Giveaway Monday

Want to win a Wii Fit?  I bet you do…well, just hop on over to the girls at Hot Moms Club and check out the contest they’ve got on their site.  Best story of why you should be the proud owner of the Wii Fit wins.  In the meantime, our grand prize winners for DS Lites were Pam Cohen and Vanessa Druckman!  In fact, Vanessa writes:
I just received the Nintendo DS today – the kids literally walked around the house in a parade carrying it up high above their heads – they were so thrilled. Thank you so much. More fun giveaways to come!

The Well Mom and Parenting Blogger Network

Today’s shout out goes to one of our newest members, Heather Cabot. Heather is a former ABC News anchor who now is the founder of the website, The Well Mom.  What I instantly loved about Heather was that she readily admits that she might not be a parenting expert, but she shares her own experiences while celebrating entreprenuers who are doing what they love while being great moms.  So check out Heather’s site and find out more about our latest member of The List.
PBNbutton.jpgOur next shout out goes to the Parent Bloggers Network. These ingenius moms offer corporations or entrepreneurs with a modest ad budget the chance to reach out to influential bloggers and have them potentially review their products. So if you’re looking to get the word out with moms, check in with the Parent Bloggers Network – they may be able to get you the buzz you’re looking for!
Want to get a shout out on Role Mommy? Join the list and then email us at beth@rolemommy.com…you never know, you could be next!

The Summer Getaway

I’m so excited that school is finally over and we can take a few road trips this summer. There is nothing like living on the east coast this time of year. This weekend, we head to Block Island and then after that, we’re off to the Hamptons, then back to Westchester and finally to Delaware for a final trip before the kids go back to school.
But before we go, guess who is in charge of taking care of all our loose ends before we hit the pedal to the medal to catch our ferry tomorrow morning? Ummm, that would be yours truly. So as soon as I drop of my daughter at school this morning, my son and I will be racing to Gristides to pick up a huge bag of cat food so that my finicky feline doesn’t starve while we’re away. Then it’s off to the gas station to fix our minivan. Of course, that’s technically a man’s job but my husband is off at work and I’m the WAHM which means I work and multi-task at the same time. I’m hoping our trusty mechanic can fix my wheels today – otherwise, we’ll be driving to Rhode Island with our engine light on – a prescription for disaster if I ever saw one.
And speaking of prescriptions, I’ve also got to load up on sunscreen, pack everyone’s clothes, bring along towels, and find where I put my tennis racket – confession: I haven’t taken it out since last August. Then I’ve got to try on my clothes from last summer and get depressed because even though I lost some weight this winter on Jenny Craig, the moment I went off, I’ve gained more than half back. Ugh. I’ll be feeling really sexy this weekend in my bathing suit…not.
Hmmm, what am I missing? Oh, that would be paying bills, a bank and post office run, and let’s not forget the fact that I still have lots of ground to cover with my clients. Note to self – head to Verizon store so they can teach me how I can use my blackberry to make my computer go wireless while I’m away – yes I bought the service but have no clue how to use it. Oh, and if there’s time, I’m hitting BordersJane Green just came out with her latest book, The Beach House and I can’t wait to snatch it up and read it this weekend!
So with less than 24 hours to go, I’m heading into the pre-vacation mad dash. Hoping to get everything done in time before we start our four day getaway. Just think what would happen if we were taking a flight – no worries, I’ll share that preparation tale when the time comes.
Are you like me and do everything last minute before you head off on vacation? And…do you have any favorite summer vacation spots in the Northeast? Let me know because we still have several weekend getaways to plan!

Role Mommy Recommends

jetsetlogomed[1] (2).jpgAs we head into vacation season, you might be stressing out over all the baby gear you’re going to need to pack up before you head out of town. Well have no fear, Jet Set Babies is here! This fabulous site offers a great service for parents – you can actually order those must-have baby items and they’ll be waiting for you when you arrive! Which means you won’t have to drag diapers and strollers and car seats with you on your trip.
So forget about buying a huge carton of pampers, your stroller, playpen, formula and a bottle of motrin for all that back pain you normally experience when you fly with your kids. Just visit Jet Set Babies and leave that packing stress behind!

Tuesday Writers

Cover-1.jpgToday we’re featuring Cheryl Lage, the author of “Twinspiration: Real-Life Advice from Pregnancy through the First Year” and writer/editor for The Parent Company family of content sites, Cheryl is a full-time, fully-fulfilled mom to fraternal twins, Darren and Sarah. During twin-synchronous sleeping and schooling hours, Cheryl hosts www.twinsights.com, a web support site for new and expecting twin parents and blogs actively at www.Twinfatuation.blogspot.com.
Cheryl’s book is perfect for a moms of multiples. A hybrid of prescriptive “how-to” guidebook and intimate diary, Twinspiration recounts with unabashed personal detail the tribulations and triumphs of a twin pregnancy and first year of life with twins. Incorporating a conversational, humorous tone throughout, Cheryl Lage provides a double dose of user-friendly suggestions, real-life advice, and heartfelt empathy.
Are you a writer who would love a shout out? Then join The List and email us at beth@rolemommy.com and you could be next!

Giveaway Monday

Today, we’ve got two great giveaways…one from Role Mommy and another from Sports Equation.
If you’re ready and quick to comment, you may be the lucky recipient of a Nintendo DS and a Crosswords DS game.  I’ve got two to give away but what I want to know from you is what’s you’re favorite thing to do with your child?  Do you like riding bikes together, doing art projects or are you more a Guitar Hero afficionado?  Share your story with us and you can be a winner.  If the comment function gives you trouble, email us at beth@rolemommy.com.
Giveaway #2 comes to us from Sports Equation, a brand new company that is preparing to launch with their Major League Baseball Math Learning Card program. As they get set to release the product in stores, they’d also love to get some feedback from Moms with Kids in the 6-11 age group. So if you’d like a great giveaway for your kids and want to be a part of their focus group, send us an email at beth@rolemommy.com and we’ll send it out to you.
Sports Equation Program 3.jpgAs the Major League Baseball season heats up during the Summer, Sports Equation‘s products provide a fun, timely summer learning activity to keep Kids engaged in practicing math during the 2 month break from the classroom. Great learning activity for encouraging increased, meaningful dialogue between kids, and their moms and dads during long Summer trips in the car, or while taking a break at the pool or beach.

The Helicopter Parent

Two weeks ago I wrote about the fact that I became dangerously close to becoming a stage mom, after taking my daughter to what seemed to be an audition for her favorite Nickelodeon show but turned into a fiasco.
Well this week, we had something way more traumatic happen. I question whether I should talk about it but something tells me if I don’t get this off my chest I’m going to burst. You see, this week the letters arrived. If you are a parent of a “gifted child” what that means is, the letters announcing that your child has been placed in a special gifted program for the next two years started arriving in mailboxes all across my neighborhood in Westchester this Monday and Tuesday.
I first heard that the letters were being sent out by a good friend of mine who didn’t receive anything in the mail and decided to call the Deputy Superintendent to see if her child made the grade. And unfortunately, she was devastated to learn he didn’t.
The moment I dropped my friend off at her house, I raced back home, dropped my laptop bag and monster purse and instinctively honed in on the pile of mail on our coffee table. Bill, bill, real estate query, magazine, junk, no letter. No letter. I thought to myself, “oh, maybe it just got tied up in the post office,” but deep down knew we were never getting a letter. Our last name starts with the letter F and kids with the letter G, M and O already got their letters. I didn’t say a word to my daughter and just kept it bottled up for one more day.
On Tuesday, I worked from home and the moment the postman arrived I greeted him at the door and grabbed the mail. Con Ed bill, Visa bill, junk, pennysaver, invitation to a birthday party, and no letter. I was crushed. I couldn’t understand how my child, who has been told on repeated occasions how amazing she is didn’t get accepted into this program but I decided not to take it one step further and call the district office.
That was until my daughter came home. She instantly found me typing away in our sun room and asked the fateful question. “Mommy, did I get a letter today? Because there were some kids in school who were bragging about getting letters and I’m sure I should have gotten a letter too.”
And that’s when I had to break the news. “No you didn’t get a letter. I don’t think you got into the program.” And she melted. As the tears started flowing down her cheeks, she insisted I call the Superintendent’s office to find out if they made a mistake. And I did what any parent would do. I called them. And I found out that not only did my daughter not make the program but she missed out on being accepted into the program by 1 point in reading and 1 point in math.
1 Point!!!! A stupid, stinking point kept my child away from being put into a program that three quarters of her friends have made. And I was livid. How could that have happened? Since she’s only in the third grade, we didn’t want to pressure her when it came to test taking and her teachers never gave us any indication that she was having problems. So we left her alone and let her academic talents blossom. And little did I know that as she was excelling in art, chess, crochet, gymnastics and ice skating, her test taking skills needed a little work.
I know in my heart that no matter what the numbers say on those standardized tests my daughter is capable of incredible things. She is determined, independent, articulate and can argue a point better than most lawyers I know. And you know what, she’s also a great writer. Not because I write too, but because over the course of the year she has presented me with poems and essays that have made me laugh and cry over the fact that my 9 year old is following in my footsteps.
I faced rejection many times over as a child and was hoping my daughter wouldn’t have to confront not making the grade this early on in her life. As I wiped away the tears from her face and gave her a hug and shed some tears myself, I gave her the advice my own mom gave to me when I was kid. She will show them all. Sometimes when you don’t get what you want, you try harder to prove that you’re not only deserving of a letter but are gifted and talented in ways a standardized test can never measure.