The one cool thing about getting older is you give less fucks. I really could care less about what someone thinks about me. Unless it’s someone I actually like, then, of course, I’d prefer that person like me back. All of a sudden I’m in middle school again… I’m the girl in the Gap overalls my Mom got on sale at the outlet stores. See me? Right there… Yup. I vividly remember how hard it was to make friends, form relationships, and feel like I fit in. We lived in a completely different world then. All of my friends lived near me. I rode my bike everywhere, I walked to school.

Now, fast forward what seems like a hundred years and here we are.


Adults with little joiners of our own. And we are watching them forge relationships. Ones that, sometimes unfortunately, we need to be a huge part of. Our children’s childhood friendships come with extra “built in” friends for us. The friend’s parents, sometimes even their siblings befriend our other children. And then you’re not only dealing with you own family dynamic, but you’re forced to blend and mold that to accommodate other families and their dynamics. It’s a balancing act that can sometimes seem like a never-ending siege of power struggles and alpha dogs.

So here is the paradox. What happens when you dislike your kid’s friend? Or worse, the friend’s parents?

Now you’re thrown into social situations with people you would normally distance yourself from. Crazy, right-wing bigot? No thanks, I’m good. Religious, preachy zealot? I gave at the office.

But your kid likes their kid. So now you have to maintain a personal relationship with someone you would normally cross the street to avoid.

I’m just starting to feel the pressure with my oldest child. He has school friends, religious school friends, soccer team friends, and we live in an area that requires plans be made, and followed up with, that’s right, you guessed it, the parents.

I can’t remember the last text message or phone conversation I had that didn’t involve me making plans with an adult I met through my child, so he could play with their child. Ultimately, it is my son’s decision when choosing friends. I only hope that his father and I have given him the proper tools to choose wisely.

I must say, lately, I’ve been pretty lucky. My son seems to be able to sense crazy pretty quickly so he’s figured out the parents and/or children he doesn’t want to be around on his own. Which is AWESOME. Thanks buddy. But this same cycle is already starting with the middle guy, and soon the baby will have friends too. And although I enjoy having a diverse tapestry of relationships in my life I would like to have some personal responsibility about the people I want to weave in.

So although, I really don’t give a fuck about people’s perception of me anymore, I care deeply about how people perceive my children based on my actions. I don’t want to be “that parent”.

The one that people cross the street to avoid.


Life Chef

I love cooking competition shows.  I mean, I, really, really love them.  Top Chef, Knife Fight, Kitchen Nightmares, Iron Chef… that shit is the bomb.

You will often find me making dinner watching episodes from the DVR while hushing the children… “I wanna see Anthony Bourdain rip this guy a new one.  Can you just give me a minute.”

Of course, due to that fact that my whole life is based around taking care of my family and playing out little mini movies of things that might never happen in my head, I came up with an idea…. Ding, ding, ding.  Can you smell it? That’s me, thinking.  This IS your mother’s cooking show.

It started with this FB post…

“I used to really like Top Chef.
But now that I have a bazillion kids I think Top Chef is bullshit.

Now here’s a cooking show idea that we would all totally watch…. Take a world renown chef and strap a 3 month old baby on them in a front carrier, then give them a 9-year-old who needs help with 6 pages of algebra…. and just for shits and giggles, chuck in a 3-year-old who wants to “help them cook”.

Here’s my pitch ‪#‎NBC‬. I call it ‪#‎LifeChef‬

I really think this could be a cool ass show.  But replace world renown chef’s with just parent chefs… people who have kids who try to actually cook a meal.  Shit, even if you’re just taking something out of the freezer with a gaggle of kids… that’s still cooking.  I’m down.

So tonight, as I had to run off to soccer, I thought more about Life Chef, now it’s a kinda funny baby to me… and I posted more on my FB page…

“Tonight, on Life Chef, our favorite Outnumbered Mother hits up the last soccer game of the regular season with the whole fan-damily in tow.
Can she reheat the rigatoni afterwards without everyone starving to death, while wearing the baby, giving 3-year-old a bath and helping the oldest with a 3-d diorama of Ferdinand Magellan (that’s due on the 30th and she just found out about today)?

Tune in and find out.”

But sadly, tonight wasn’t my night… I can see Bravo with the sad music as my update episode plays…

“If you’re been waiting with bated breath for tonight’s Life Chef results….

I would have been kicked off the show.

Got home, heated oven, put baby to bed, got big guy in PJ’s, played a game with middle monkey and then, only then, realized I had yet to put the rigatoni in the preheated oven.

“Outnumbered Mother… please pack your knives, your front carrier, your paci’s, your pack N play, your son’s algebra HW, your annoying toddler, your husband, your baby, your older son, his soccer ball, your shitty attitude and go.”


Padma Lakshmi would be happy to see our 5 little silhouettes fade into the horizon.

After all, she’s a Mom now too…


I got a boatload of stuff accomplished this morning. 3 month check-up for the baby, visit with my Brother and Sister-in-law, grocery shopping. It would almost seem like I’m a productive person, which is a bold-faced lie. Better fix that before the word gets out. Productive people are class mom, Productive people head up committees… I, am not yet there.

So, after my exhausting morning, I’m pulling into my driveway to discover the new neighbor and her little dog on my lawn. No problem, I like neighbors, I like dogs. And as I look closer I see her dog is taking a shit. On my lawn. No biggie, dogs poop. And if anyone knows anything about living organisms and bowel movements it’s me.

But then she did something surprising.

As the dog finished it’s business… my new neighbor started to just… walk away. I know in big cities lots of people don’t clean up after their dogs, maybe it’s acceptable where you are reading this right now, and yes, it happens here too but it usually doesn’t happen right in front of the owner, of the property that is getting shit on. Hell, maybe she even forgot a poop bag at the house and needed to run back and get one, but that was not the case here.

After I got over the initial “Oh, no she didn’t” moment I called after her…

How’s it going?

“Oh good, and you?”

Really great… so, are you gonna pick that up?

“Wasn’t planning on it, it’s natural….”

{Natural??? What??}

Yeah, it might be natural for you to have dog shit all over your lawn but I don’t have a dog. I have lots of kids. So maybe next time I’ll send one of them over to your house when they need to go #2.

“I’ll go get a bag.”

There I go again.

Making fast friends.

Welcome to the neighborhood.


This was a monstrous year for my 3-year-old. He learned to ride a bike, and a razor scooter, he started preschool and most importantly… he is now potty trained.

The potty thing was HUGE! 3-year-old shits are basically an adult shit, and cleaning adult shits off the ass of an argumentative, moody, over tired, hulk-smash child…. well, it sucks. It was awful. We went through 3 diaper pails last year and his room still reeked of poop. Not fun times.

We had 10 glorious diaper free days before the new baby was born. 10 days of revelry, bliss and celebration. Hubby and I drank champagne (well, wine from a box) and ate onion tartlets (frozen bagel bites) and congratulated ourselves on a job well done (who am I fucking kidding, the kid finally decided he wanted to wear “BIG BOY” underwear).

See, we were going about this potty thing the wrong way. We were concentrating on the little picture… Stickers and treats, praise and happy parents. My boy could care less about those things. But finally getting to wear underwear with Superman, Spiderman, Batman, Aquaman, The Flash, The Green Lantern, and Star Wars on them? Now THAT, was motivation enough to sit on the potty!

So now, off he goes every morning to the underwear drawer to pick out his favorite undercover persona of the day. And G-d forbid if we are at the bottom of the underwear barrel and his favorites aren’t clean… “No Mommy, Diego just won’t cut it.”

As the school year comes to an end the majority of his 3-year-old classmates are also out of diapers. Which, come to find out, is the things that dreams are made of for my son. Everyday, I pick him up from school and everyday I ask what he did that day. The report I get is one I suspect that Joan Rivers would have given as a Toddler. Fashion Police, watch out…

“Farah had Frozen underwear on today but she popped her pants so Miss Suzy gave her extra orange underwear but she didn’t want those cause they are boy underwear. And Joey had Batman but not like mine because his had Batman all over them not just on the front. And Ryan is still in a diaper and I told him if he wears underwear he can touch his penis all the time.”

Wait, what? You shouldn’t be touching your penis ALL THE TIME, just when you have to go potty.

“I don’t, but Ryan can”

Sweet Muppety Christ

All I can imagine in my head is the Red Carpet at fashion week (except it’s in the hall of the preschool) and my kid is strutting down the carpet, nice and slow with a hand in his pants and he’s approached by some reporter from E! (flanked by the little girls from his class)…. the reporter puts a microphone in his face and say’s “Who are you wearing?” and my 3-year-old, drops trou and proudly displays his Superman underwear for all the world to see.

He’s totally ready for College.


It’s another night and I’m wearing the baby.

I’m not complaining. Wait, am I complaining?

I really shouldn’t be. I loved “wearing” him for 9 glorious months. It was awesome actually. If every time I strapped this child to my chest I was given a dose of my pregnancy hormones, I’d be just fine. But this isn’t a sci-fi movie. That would be a cool premise though… gotta remember to come back to that.

What pisses me off about this whole “wearing the baby” thing, is that it’s my husbands fault.

NO…. not like that. Get your mind out of the gutter.

Okay, put it back in the gutter, have a dirty thought for me, and now, come back to reality.

It’s my husband’s fault because the baby likes to sleep on his chest. And my hubby, CAN SLEEP ANYWHERE!!! THROUGH ANYTHING!  It’s a gift, and I’m totally jealous.

So, the big boys are at soccer practice with Daddy and I’m wearing a baby. The baby. My baby.  At least I finished making the rigatoni first. It’s super hard to cook while wearing a baby.


I know I’m not alone in this. I know the statistics, I have lots of Mommy friends who’ve experienced the same thing and I’m sure that you, sitting there reading at home, will be nodding your head in agreement at some point of this post.

Yet, even with that knowledge, this topic is still hard to talk about.  It feels wrong and shameful and selfish in so many ways. And that is what is so fucked up about it. The taboo. The unknown X-factor that is super scary. The knowledge that it can go from manageable to a mental shit show in the blink of an eye.  Postpartum depression is real, it really happens and I am still completely terrified by it.

I’ve heard people refer to postpartum as “the baby blues”. Nothing pisses me off more. It sounds so trivial, so minimized. Like it could even be the name of a chord progression in a song. I realize that some people are too stupid to understand medical terminology…. so “the baby blues” sounds perfectly fine to them. But I don’t think I’ve ever met a woman, who’s fought with the demon that is postpartum, refer to it that way.

My youngest son is almost 3 months old. So it seems to me that I have dodged the bullet this time around. Which is probably the only reason I’m even venturing into writing about it. Because otherwise I’d be in the bathroom crying right now.

Here’s a disclaimer that I feel I need to point out. I am not a parenting or mental health authority, by any means. I’m just a gal with a computer, a big mouth, too many kids and a shit-load of thoughts running through her head.  If you need help, ask for it. Call a doctor, or a friend, hell, you can even send me a message, I’ll point you in the right direction.

After my first son was born I was a fucking wreck. I’d never stayed at home before, I’d always held a job. A job where I was able to use my brain on a daily basis, and interact with other adults. Now, I’d given birth and became a stay-at-home housewife overnight. Rote behavior was my new best friend. Wash laundry, fold laundry put away laundry. I imagined this is what postal workers must feel like… and knew the madness behind the repetition. I was so ashamed this was happening to me. People kept asking if I was alright and I kept lying through my teeth. Completely sure it was all my fault with a smile on my face and a lie in my eyes. And my son, this beautiful, perfect child whom I felt I didn’t deserve. I couldn’t stop staring at him, convinced that my husband was the only reason I had been so fortunate. Looking back I can’t believe the tricks my brain played on me. I ended up self-medicating, trying to get that inner voice to shut the hell up. It was awful, and it got really ugly before it got better. Embarrassing ugly. I’m not proud of my behavior. I alienated friends and family. Although I never endangered my son, I endangered myself. If it wasn’t for my husband’s determination, things would have been very different. I owe him my life.

When I got pregnant the second time I was petrified. I had a glorious pregnancy and vowed to myself I wouldn’t let my brain get the best of me. But that isn’t how postpartum works, unfortunately. You can’t will yourself into good mental health. There is no recipe for what causes it. Sometimes it just is. And after number 2 was born, I found myself falling down the rabbit hole again. Scared shitless that I was powerless.

This time around I consulted my Doctor. I wasn’t embarrassed like I’d been the first time around but I was worried. Really worried. I couldn’t go back to the person I was before, I wouldn’t. My Doctor put me on an antidepressant and it did help. But the thing about antidepressants is that while you don’t feel sad, you don’t really feel… anything. I’m a pretty passionate person, so this was a real shock. No ups, no downs, not to mention no orgasms. You’re just… kinda numb.

But the antidepressants were a very good call. After about 6 months my Doctor and I weaned myself off and my hormones had regulated themselves back to normal levels. I felt really good. Great even. But the time on the medication had helped me to put on some weight that I had a very hard time taking off. Still, I would have done it again in a heartbeat.

You can just imagine my fear when we decided to have a third baby. Beyond fear…. real, true, fucking panic.

But here I am. Another awesome pregnancy under my belt (and thighs, and boobs). A beautiful baby boy smiling in my face and that postpartum monster is nowhere to be found. I have no idea why?

Believe me, I’m just too busy being thankful (and making lunches and washing dishes and folding laundry).

If you are lost in the sea of postpartum depression please know you aren’t alone. And you shouldn’t be ashamed.

And it will get better.