Sunday, February 28, 2010

Mommy Dating

I never realized I would be back on the dating scene. After all, I am married with children. Ever since we moved to Fairfield, I was determined to meet other cool moms with similar interests and parenting styles.

I managed to meet a few really cool ladies from the Mothers of Multiples Club. While I don't attend all the meetings or events, it's been a great way to get information, sell used toys and clothes (and vice versa), and to meet new people. While all moms have something in common -- children -- there are still a lot of things to factor into a good friendship.

Today I was in Ole Mole Southport picking up some take-out. There was a woman there also picking up an order and she had her toddler in the stroller with her, who was passed out. I was envious of her daughter's ability to sleep on the go and engaged in a discussion.

My usual pick-up line is something like "how old is your daughter/son?" When I told her I had twin daughters around the same age, the flood gates opened up and she asked me on a play date. A little too soon I thought to myself. Turns out she recently adopted this little girl, which is totally awesome, and was looking for other mommies in the area. At the end of the conversation I wasn't left wanting more. It just wasn't clicking; there was no chemistry. I think she was too old for me too. But she asked for my phone number. What was I supposed to do? I ended up giving my email and phone number. She seemed like a nice woman, but I just don't think it will work out.

Here are my criteria:
1) Location, location, location -- Getting out the door with one or two toddlers under toe is challenging even for the most organized person. If you live more than 20 minutes away from each other, the chances significantly decrease that you will actually be able to keep up a face-to-face relationship.

My one close friend lives in Wilton and I would say that is about the cut off. I am dying for her to move closer, like across the street, so I can come over in my PJ's at 8am with the girls. My other close friend lives in Norwalk, which is closer since it's right on and off I95, but she works full-time so we have to arrange weekend play dates and get togethers. I wish she was around all the time so we could see each other more. But she is bright and talented so I am sure she will be in business for herself someday soon.

It's hard because sometimes you meet someone really cool, or have a friend with a child the same age, but location and toddler schedules keep you apart. One woman I met with twins lives in Seymour. We met at a Target in Milford once, but the distance makes things hard. My other friend lives in Hamden and while we have gotten together several times since our children were born, it's not like living in the same town or two towns over. She has made her own group of local friends and even started a really cool mommy group on I wish I could attend more of her activities.

2) Age -- I never thought age would make a big difference, but it does. I have found that I tend to click more with mommies who are within five years of my age. Same goes for the kids ... you want the children to be able to interact on some level.

3) Parenting Style -- I walked into a new Moms group that was organized through my former pediatrician's office hoping to make a connection. When everyone had arrived, there was a nice group of about 12 mommies. As I made conversation and listened to what other mommies were saying, I quickly realized that I wasn't going to make any lasting relationships. They were talking about their natural births, herbal medicines and how they did yoga the entire pregnancy. While I completely respect other people's choices, they do not reflect my own beliefs. So I grabbed a bunch of cookies and left politely after about an hour. I never spoke with any of them again.

My mom once told me to treasure this time because you have the opportunity to pick your mommy friends. Soon enough the girls will be in school and the dating pool will open up again. Only this time, your kids will be picking their own friends and you will be blindly matched up with mommies you may never have ever asked on a first date.

Saturday, February 27, 2010

Eating Clean

I picked up the book Eating Clean and am trying to fight my sugar habit. I never really realized how addicted to sugar I am. Between Sweet Rexie's and Crumbs, I have been really gorging on sugar. Nothing seemed to taste quite right without maple syrup or a few packets of Splenda in it, so I knew it had to stop.

Today is Day 5 of Eating Clean. It is based on six smaller, protein packed meals and basically the philosophy is to eat "clean" -- meaning all natural, non-processed food choices. You can have sweet things, in moderation, so long as they are flavored with natural sweeteners like Agave Nectar. There is a belief in the power of supplements like bee pollen, flax seed and wheat germ, so I am also giving that a try. I will say the first two days were really hard. I had headaches and craved soda and candy. But now I am fine. I swear I have more energy.

I have always valued the importance of health and try to feed my children healthy, fresh food options. Of course it's not possible all the time, but I do my best. And it's frustrating when you make something fresh for them and they toss it on the floor or poke it around like it's a gross bug on their plate, but I keep trying. I want them to enjoy desserts and sweet treats, but am trying to avoid the traps like a Munchkin every time I go through the Dunkin Donuts drive through. I definitely don't think sugar is the enemy, but we need to have a truce.

Cabin Fever

We have cabin fever -- along with the other hundreds and thousands of moms in across the U.S. (well maybe it's not so bad in L.A.). Winter here is dragging, as usual, and just when you think the snow is gone and the grass is around to stay, we get dumped on again. I find that March is the hardest month because technically spring is supposed to begin, but it doesn't really start until my birthday, in April. It is, however, a nice gift.

The girls turned 20 months yesterday. I am on a downward path toward the terrible two's, even though I feel like it started around 13 months. Tempers and attitudes are playing out over the course of the day and I am doing my best to play both referee and ignore the whining. But at the end of the day it's all worth it as we are rewarded with several cuddle sessions and kisses.

We had the stomach flu two weeks ago. It started with Isabelle and then Zoe caught it a few hours later. I was spared until five days later, while my husband fresh home from a business trip also came down with the awful, awful bug. I really wouldn't wish it on my worst enemy. Vomiting and stomach pain, aches, chills and sweats. When I finally came down with the symptoms, all I could think of was how my poor little girls endured the same. They also ended up with a raging diaper rash from the end of the bug (will spare you the details). Not fair. They were like little cuddly, wet noodles for two days. We watched our fair share of Elmo and Yo Gabba Gabba. Foofa is Zoe's favorite. She has a little stuffed animal version of the character who she sleeps with at night.

My friend asked me yesterday if I had picked a date for the girls' birthday this summer as her friend who has a child the same age already "called" a date for her son's second birthday. I can't even think about a party right now. I feel like I am drowning in Desitin & Triple Paste. The women in my family were blessed with incredibly sensitive skin.

I think we will have a Yo Gabba Gabba themed party, but something simple and at home. I am sure that is what the girls would want anyway.