Tuesday, November 26, 2013


When I was pregnant, a friend of mine suggested that I sign up for a "new mama" group at a local place called Amma Parenting Center.  I didn't know much about it, but eager for advice, I went online immediately and signed up.  I never looked into the details, didn't know what I would learn, but if a mom thought it was a good idea, I figured I should listen.

Smart idea Kara, smart idea.

Amma has classes that start nearly every week so you can start a class shortly after your child is born.  I started when Mollie was just 2 weeks old.  

A group of brand spankin' new mamas. Some brand spankin' new babies.  And a whole bunch of exhausted, confused, happy, scared, stunned faces.

We spent the next 6 weeks getting to know eachother, crying to eachother, learning from eachother, and  reminding eachother that we were not alone. 

I don't know what I would have done without the support of my Amma Mama friends. 

And now, our babies are all 1! And they're walking! And playing! And so we decided to get together to celebrate.

We have come so far! It's been a crazy year and those first 3 months were insanely hard. Thanks to my Amma Mamas, I knew I was never in it alone.

Amma babies 1 year ago....

Amma babies at their 1st Birthday party...

Wednesday, November 20, 2013


So, my family does not celebrate Christmas because we are Jewish.  I have many Christian friends, I love them very much, I think Christmas sounds like a lovely holiday, but we do not celebrate it.
No biggie.
It's an extra day off work to enjoy some Chinese food, a movie and relaxation.
No, I'm not sad that I don't celebrate Christmas.
No, I've never been sad about it.
No, we don't put up a Christmas tree.
Nope, not even a white and blue one.
No, those are not intended for the "Jewish families to celebrate Christmas" as so many people have tried to convince me.
Yes, I do eat Christmas cookies when my friend Stacy makes them.
Why? Because they're delicious and if there's one things Jews do celebrate...it's delicious food.

Because we do not celebrate this holiday, there are some things that I will never understand. And will always need to phone-a-friend to explain the reason for various Christmas traditions. Just because I don't celebrate the holiday doesn't mean I should be ignorant about it's meaning.

Last night...the phone-a-friend Stacy was brought in to explain the meaning of Carmen Christmas.
Look at the stocking on the far right
And we decided...it was a typo.  She could find no reason why the stocking would say "Carmen Christmas".  Is that true? A typo?

And the most recent "Thing I don't understand about Christmas"

Why might someone want to decorate their toilet like Santa or Mrs. Claus?  I mean, sure, it's a good deal, 60% off. Woo hoo.  But I don't really want to dress my toilet us as anything but...uh, a toilet.  Seems like it does a pretty good job just as it is.  As a white porcelain bowl.  I don't think Santa wants what is goin' in there. 

I'm just sayin'. 

Maybe I'm missing something.

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

12 monther

Inspired by a blog that I follow, I thought I'd tell you a little bit about my sweet little girl at age 12 months.

Mollie Cate is just over 12 months old and oh, what a personality she has.  I don't think I realized how much personality people have, right from the start.  Mollie is sweet, and lovable. She loves tight hugs and kisses on the cheek. She will try to kiss you back but she just opens her mouth and tries to suck on your face.  She just learned how to blow a kiss and it will melt your heart. 

She is sassy. Very sassy. She will tell you what she wants, and what she doesn't want.  

She has some party tricks.  She claps along to 'If you're happy and you know it', she knows all of the hand and body motions to 'The Wheels on the Bus' (i.e. wheels with her hand, bumping up and down & the wipers back and forth).  She knows how to hide her face when you say 'peekaboo'. She knows the sign language signs for milk, food, sleep and all done. 

Mollie has two main facial expressions: skeptical and happy.  The first expression comes directly from her father. 

She babbles "dada" all day long. It started as "dadadada", an ongoing chant.  It has evolved into "dada" as she points at an object.  This object may be a random man in a store, a vase, a diaper....they're all "dada". Jeremy thinks that all of those things just remind her of him. I disagree.

She is feisty and she can hold her own. The boys at daycare know they can't mess with MollMoll. She is not delicate.  She's sweet but tough.

Moll's interest include: her dog Stanley, cookies, corn tamales, cell phones, her small red wagon, whole green beans and shoes.  Mollie is not walking yet, but she took her first steps on November 13.  She took three little steps forward into our arms and Jeremy and I screamed so loud we scared her into thinking she did something wrong.  Nothing wrong little girl, just growing up too fast.

She loves her red wagon. Love, loves her red wagon.  Every night she takes her cow dressed in a tutu, and Monkey wearing a Mollie shirt out of the wagon and climbs in. I think she would prefer to sleep in her red wagon. 

MollMoll has an awesome tush.  She's going to hate me someday for writing this, but the girl has the most amazing little tush.  Her teachers at daycare taught her the "Jump Jump shake your booty" song and she can do the booty dance on command. It's amazing.  It's viral video worthy. 

The girl is sweeter than pie if she loves you.  She's cold as ice if she's scared of you.  She dislikes the amazingly sweet music teacher at daycare. She is mildly obsessed with my friend Debra. 

She naps with her tush in the air and sleeps so hard her knees and cheek are red in the morning.  She has never been the world's best sleeper, nor the world's worst sleeper.  She's an average sleeper. Average sleeper but an above average eater.  That's my girl.

So that's a little bit about our girl.  She's a pretty cool kid if I do say so myself. If she wasn't my daughter, I would want to be her friend. 

Linking up with my friend Kristin today!

Thursday, November 14, 2013


Thanks to my amazing parents, we were able to take a little trip out of town last weekend with our friends.  We purchased a trip at a benefit for the local Children's Hospital. After Mollie's trip to the hospital last year, I was willing to donate my life savings to these people.

So we purchased a trip to the Napa Valley in California.

And it was lovely and amazing.

And I brought home a souvenir.
Very tall chef
Yes, I purchased a very tall chef in Napa.

Why you may ask? Well, because it's not every day that you see an extremely tall wooden chef statute.  And when you find one, it seems like something you should own.

I mean seriously, doesn't Marcel (that is what we named him) just make you laugh? The 'stache. The spots on his apron. The fact that he is actually, literally, half my height.  He's awesome!

And so I informed Jeremy that we needed to buy the extremely tall chef.
He looked at me and his eyes said:
How in the hell are we going to get this thing home?
Why do we need a very tall chef?
I know she's going to expect me to carry this thing for the rest of the trip.
Where are we going to put the very tall chef in our child-proofed home?
This is a total waste of money.

And then he shrugged his shoulders and handed me the credit card. He too understood that we needed the very tall chef.

And so we purchased him.  And he was too tall to fit in our suitcase. And I took him out of the box to try to fit him into the suitcase, only to find that he wouldn't fit and then the box fell apart. So we had to hand carry Marcel all the way back home.
Through check in.
Into the TSA security lines.
Hand inspected by the TSA.
Rattled and almost decapitated by the carry on baggage conveyor belt.
Carted through the airport.
Rested under our seats during the flight (he was so tall that he had to sit next to the window seat)
And finally...safely home to reside under the cow artwork in our kitchen.

Feel free to visit Marcel, the very tall chef, anytime.  Maybe he will whip up some cookies for you.  A very wise purchase.