small beings

2012 Apocalypse, Celebrity Ghost Stories, and the week alone with the kids. REAL FEARS.

April 1, 2013

Guys, I survived. Well, I survived week 1 of single parenting. I have another week coming up followed by another 2 weeks alone. Dudes, I don’t care if you’re like the toughest baddest ass on the block. You WILL FEAR the week alone. Oh yes, you’ll fear it.


Because now? I fear nothing more in my life. Well, I’m pretty scared of also facing a day where there is nothing “planned” for G. Because when I don’t have either paintbrushes and rocks and shit laid out for some sort of “project”, it’s all over. Or maybe jesus took the wheel that day and delivered some sort of large box from Amazon that can be turned into a rocket ship or a house for an hour. Then, we’re good. But no plan? Holy shit, just go and hide your valuables and sanity because they are both about to go out the window.

And that was my challenge with the double kid solo week. What the hell are we going to do? I mean I’ve done every BS activity on Pinterest including the damn baking soda dropper food coloring nonsense. I did the sensory bins of stupid. I did the jars of crap that you hold and then break and then ruin the carpet. So I scheduled us. I scheduled the shit out of us.

I sent a desperate email to pretty much everyone I knew. It went like this.

Hi friend,

How are you doing? How is that thing you are working on? How is that person we talked about? Great! Now I really need you to help me give kids baths and take G to your house for an hour. Please help me with that if you care about me or my children at all. Thank you. Peacebewithyou. 

Desperate in Phoenixville,


And because I have awesome friends, I had someone here every single night helping me with baths and bedtime. Because bathing an infant with a toddler running around with a bucket on his head and a sword in his hand, is difficult. One night I even had one of my “cool” friends here to help. The “cool” friends are the ones without kids yet. However she confirmed for me after her night with us that it will be quite some time before she becomes uncool like me. Thanks kids.

You see, G is special. Real freaking special. And by special I mean, he’s 2 and a half and drama out the ass. I am walking on egg shells with this kid.


Me: G, I made your favorite lunch!

G: I no hungy.

Me: Ok, you can let me know when you want to eat.


MeL Ok great, let’s eat now.


Me: Ok, you see how this could be confusing for me Gavin.

G: AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAH!!! fire candle birthday cuppycake fire.

Me: Oh, I see. Right. I don’t know why I didn’t think about that first.

And then there is Ruby. Poor little Ruby is getting her 2nd tooth in a month. And she’s only 4 months old. She wants to be happy so bad but she is just mis. It’s a little like this.

Hi Ruby Lee!


You are so happy!


Oh, don’t be sad. Let’s sing a song.




Oh sorry, ok more song.


(G screams: MOMMY PLAY TOYS)



And then there’s the bullshit of cleaning the cat shit box, doing laundry, doing diaper laundry, doing dishes, cooking meals, emptying trash, taking out trash, getting mail, sending mail… You know, regular people stuff who can do stuff who have 2 working arms available. People like B. People who are IN CALIFORNIA VISITING THEIR GIRLFRIEND.

So B is home. But like not really. I mean he still goes to work every day and I still am home with the kids. And yes, it’s hard and yes I complain. I would complain about a rainbow of sunshine free J.crew clothes. But dudes, it’s not a one man job. And for those of you in this situation permanently? Call the cops. Someone needs to be arrested for putting you in that situation. At least get a lawyer. Call me, I’ll be your lawyer.

Day by day people. Day by day.


Queen of the dark circle.

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  • Jasmine April 1, 2013 at 9:56 pm

    Modg my kids are 16, 12 & 7 and I do not enjoy weeks as a single parent at their age. I feel for you!! Stay strong!!! B owes you a major gift when he comes back from his next trip!!!
    When he is gone for 2 weeks, he better have them pre-delivered!

  • Renee April 1, 2013 at 10:04 pm

    I remember those days! My husband worked 7 days a week, 12 hours a day for the first 3 months of my second son’s life. It was the equivalent of being a single parent except I had to endure his snoring on top of it…a bed to myself would have possibly made it bearable. Hang in there…it sounds cliche, but it does get easier!

  • Sally @ exploits of a military mama April 1, 2013 at 10:10 pm

    Oh honey, my heart goes out to you. My husband deploys or leaves for weeks of training all the time. But….I knew this when I married him and still chose to have two babies. Even though I knew what I was getting into, it’s still hard. Hang in there, mama. You will come out of this stronger than ever.

  • Mrs. Plank April 1, 2013 at 10:11 pm

    You know what I think? As long as they are alive you are doing just fine. When I became a sahm I started bath times at 3. Because I needed an “activity” and a bath is just that. Don’t put so much pressure on yourself friend. And if all else fails and you need an hour of sanity there’s always Sprout and Caillou.

    Hang in there. Ill send wine.

  • Kenya April 1, 2013 at 10:19 pm

    Wow… Shall I send boxes of wine along with an au pair?

  • Jenalee April 1, 2013 at 10:24 pm

    Showers, they are an activity and you don’t have to be as worried as with a bath. Like you can walk away for a second, of
    R sit in yesight and nurse. When my 2 year old is being crazy I let him play in there….also when I’m alone at night I give 10 month old a quick bath and put him to bed, then let two year old shower….Much easier than screaming at two year old as he drowns 10 month old.

    • Katie R-G April 2, 2013 at 7:28 am

      This^^^!!! We do this for meltdown time too. My 2 year old loves showering and it gives me a minute to breath.

  • krista @armywife-style April 1, 2013 at 10:29 pm

    I know how you feel (x a bunch of weeks), my husband just got home from an 8 month deployment. Shit is no joke. And now that he’s home he’s still so busy I’m like “Oh I forgot you are home, you can eat a hungry man for dinner, it’s that or roast toddler, your choice”
    I’m a big of 6 babysitters, Molly, Gil, Oona, Nonny, Deema and Gobi, they are excellent.
    I will tell you that you get into a routine, where you don’t need the husband or other people to help.
    Good luck.

  • Nikki V April 1, 2013 at 10:31 pm

    Is it sad I wish my husband would leave for a week? lol I swear he’s my 3rd kid! Have you tried Hylands Teething Tablets for Ruby, they are a life saver here. I think they’re cheapest on Amazon or at Walmart.

    • Sara April 2, 2013 at 7:18 am

      I second the hyland tablets. They’re magical. And once my daughter was older, if she was random whiny, I’d use them like a placebo. She’d think she was getting ‘medicine’ but it was really a baby altoid.

  • Lauren @ T&G April 1, 2013 at 10:32 pm

    Having people come over is key. One week, my husband AND my mom were out of town, and I was like frantically calling my dad to come over, even if for 15 minutes. So that I could like wash bottles and pick the laundry up off the floor. The worst part is that when they finally go to bed, you’re so exhausted from not having one damn break all effing day that you don’t have the energy to do anything except watch tv and maybe dick around on your phone for a bit.

    But, you’re fine. You got this.

    On a side note, I belong to Baby Boot Camp. Every day, us moms meet at the park with our kids/strollers and work out. At the end, the older kids get out and play with each other and you get to vent to other moms about how your husband chews too loud or how your in-laws gave your toddler meth for a snack. Anyway, the whole process takes at least 2 hours when it’s all said and done, and it could put a huge dent in your day in terms of keeping your kids busy. I highly suggest trying to find something like that in your area if it’s available.

    • Katie E. April 2, 2013 at 9:33 am

      I second this. Find a random meet-up with other moms if nothing else.

  • Stephanie April 1, 2013 at 10:36 pm

    Just tell B that when he leaves for two whole weeks, he has to fly me out there to help you. 😛 I’ve been a nanny for what feels like a bajillion years, and I have an actual college degree in that shit. Seriously. (Bachelor of Science in Home and Family Living) <– How is that even a real thing??? hahahahaha
    Despite all of that, I still do NOT envy your position. Two kids at that age is effing hard. I'm sending all my good vibes your way!

  • christy April 1, 2013 at 10:38 pm

    Thinking of you dear. Just say the mantra “it will get easier” 10,000 times while your crying and hiding in the bathroom. And get wine. lots of it. Because as mothers, we NEED it. Peace, love.

    • christy April 1, 2013 at 10:40 pm

      Btw, Stickers and Bubbles. You can never have enough.

  • Emily April 1, 2013 at 10:40 pm

    Yeah… you’re a boss. You go with your bad self. I have this to look forward to this summer, on my own with my two (both girls, so not quite as tough as you have it, apparently according to everyone ever). Well, only 5-days at a time, but for six weeks. Thanks for sufficiently preparing me for the nightmare. Good to see you’re still alive. (I gotta get me some of those “cool friends” you speak of… so I too can scare them out of procreating…)

  • Jennifer April 1, 2013 at 10:49 pm

    I feel for you. I have one 3 year old and work full time. My sons father started working second shift and I (not that I’m as fortunate as you, because when he’s home, the only thing that he does is make the three year old more hyper) cannot for the life of me figure out how to care for a toddler, work 40+ hours a week, make sure he gets to daycare and they actually teach him something, try to get the little man to understand that 3 year olds poop in a potty, not their pants, keep my house clean, make sure there is laundry clean, and oh yeah, I almost forgot, we have to eat at some point. It’s hard. I secretly curse every ‘super mom’ because I’m exhausted. EVERYDAY. Don’t stress. You’re not alone on this journey of motherhood. And we sure as hell deserve a lot more credit then we get. And yes, damn pay raise.

  • Kendra April 1, 2013 at 10:50 pm

    I totally get this. In the way that only the mom of a two year old boy and 12 week old girl, could. Solidarity, sister. I’m far too exhausted to comment any further…

  • Carolin April 1, 2013 at 10:56 pm

    You are doing awesome! More awesome than I would do!

    The offer for the play date still stands and based on your email signed from Phoenixville we’re only 45 mins apart. I’m in Bethlehem. We have a play set in the back yard and a 2 year old (not to mention two stupid dogs) and a sandbox.

    Keep your chin up and keep chanting: I can do this! I can do this! :)

  • Lisa McP April 1, 2013 at 11:43 pm

    Have you ever considered an Au Pair? I’m an “army wife” down under in Australia, and I think I’m going to get an Au Pair for the next deployment. So– the low down is they are likely a student (age 18-30), typically have had 2 years of college. They typically enter the US on a work/holiday visa. They come and live with you for 4, 6, or 12 months. You pay them about $150-175/week plus they eat your food, and they work 25-30 hours a week for you, plus do light cleaning, and evening babysitting. It varies, but that is the gist.

    I mean, not just for the weeks B is away, but for the next 6 months- until you are settled into your new 2 kid family. Lots of information and stories online- definitely worth a looking into. Xx

  • Jackie April 1, 2013 at 11:52 pm

    Lady, I have one 16 month old and I can barely deal with him switching from two naps to one.

    In my eyes, you are Mother Theresa (if she were to swear and have negative thoughts, of course)…I mean you cook meals, do household chores AND respond to mail!?! I think you need to convince B to get you a personal chef and maid, pronto!

    And for whatever it’s worth, you look amazing, and your kids are freakin’ adorable!!! And let’s be honest, from one type-A, perfectionist, overachieving, controlling mom to another that’s the shit that matters……Oh right, and everyone’s health, of course. 😉

  • Carrie April 2, 2013 at 1:21 am

    You’re hysterical. I wish you had more time because I enjoy your rants. Stay strong!

  • Kallie April 2, 2013 at 2:33 am

    Does everybody REALLY need a bath EVERY night? I’m totally serious. No kiddo ever became a pervy serial killer from a skipped bath or two during mom’s stress Hell. It sounds like it’s a major headache for you, so don’t do it on the daily. Febreeze ’em if they stink. <- not serious that time.

    • Kait April 2, 2013 at 8:10 am

      My husband was gone last week too. My kids are a little older than yours (7, 6, 5, 5, 4, 3) and my house went to hell last week. I didn’t do laundry or bathe the kids or feed them anything healthy. Homeschooling went to hell too. We pretty much colored and watched cartoons.

      So you basically look like supermom right now.

      Cut yourself some slack. The kids are alive and the house is still standing so you’re doing amazing by any standards.

      • Kait April 2, 2013 at 8:11 am

        I don’t know why this replied to Kallie’s comment instead of posting as a new comment. Sorry Kallie.

    • Jennah April 2, 2013 at 8:14 am

      Agreed. I know people have routines and all, but mine is 1 and still only gets 2-3 baths per week (barring some sort of additional mess). I sometimes feel like a terrible mom bc of it, but it helps her skin not dry out and gives us one less thing to do every night.

      • Amanda April 2, 2013 at 10:07 am

        I agree. At G and Ruby’s age they don’t stink much. I’m sure the funk they do produce can be smeared off with a baby wipe!

        My daughter is 7 and she doesn’t bathe every night. Mostly because I’m lazy. Yes at 7 she could bathe herself but I’m also an enabler….

        I’m just glad she’s able to make her own dinner – one less thing I have to worry about.

    • Melanie April 2, 2013 at 2:33 pm

      Yes! I was just thinking that – my four month old gets a bath every few days at most. He doesn’t get dirty!

      • Ramie April 2, 2013 at 4:38 pm

        I have 4 year old twins and we do a bath every evening and have done so from very early on. Yes it’s part of our routine, but it’s also a place where they stay and play happily for a significant amount of time giving me a little break. It’s really more about me and my “free time” than their cleanliness. 😉

        Also recommend 1-2-3 Magic for G. It’s all about discouraging certain behaviors, i.e. whining, which at 2 years old is just gonna happen but if you start counting to 3 now, by the time he’s 3/4, he’ll know what it means. Works for my girls. Good luck!

  • Marge April 2, 2013 at 4:51 am

    There’s always one of you in the crowd. Lame

    • Kallie April 3, 2013 at 11:36 am

      And mean is ragging on someone’s choices just because they’re not identical to yours. Seriously? She’s trying to give herself and her kids a healthy, happy situation and you’re shitting on her for it because she’s not as tough as you want her to be? SO WHAT IF SHE GETS HELP. Save your self-righteous poison for the crap moms beating their kids and cooking meth, not the ones who are just trying to get through a crazy week. Honestly. Hey everyone reading the comments? Rae is a better person than Modg. Let history show. ….happy now?

  • Stacey April 2, 2013 at 6:58 am

    Is it just me or does G look like he is letting Ruby know some “rules” in that pic

  • Stacy April 2, 2013 at 6:58 am

    My husband is about to leave me for a “conference” in Palm Beach, Florida. He’s staying at the fucking Ritz. Really, he did try to see if I could go with him to get a break BUT when you had twins instead of the single 2nd baby there isn’t even enough people to divide the kids up for a few days. At our preschool “conversation” aka a conference for my 2 year old, they said she does best with structure and crafting activities. Which is great information……for someone who has time to set all that up!

    Anyway, I’m sure you’re doing awesome. It is tough shit. I feel the crazy coming in my head all the time. Surprisingly, I bet lots of people think you have it all together. When I have all my kids out at places, usually the gym, I get stopped and people tell me I have it all together. They just don’t see the crazy train, and I guess luckily for me since I have a 2 year old and 4 month twins mostly people just feel sorry for me when I’m out in public.

    To me, night time is the worst. What we decided to do is have our babysitter come and help me a few nights a week. She comes from 4:30-7:30 after school. It’s worth every penny and hey, it’s a person to talk to during the day. Maybe something to look into for the next travel weeks?

  • Lisa @bitesforbabies April 2, 2013 at 8:38 am

    CONGRATS for surviving!! I seriously don’t know how I would have done it…I probably would have asked EVERYONE I know for help too 😉

  • Emily April 2, 2013 at 10:01 am

    I’m a single Mama of a now 6 and 3 year old (my ex and I split when my babes were 3 and 4 mos old). I felt as though I was in the trenches so to speak for that year or so after he left. Aside from the other thousand monstrously life changing things I’ve learned about myself and how this world works as a result of my divorce, asking for help and accepting it with grace was one of them. The pendulum has swung too far on this go-it-alone-DIY-nuclear-family aspect of our culture. We simply can’t do this alone nor should we! We need one another. Not only do we as adults need the reprieve, but the kids do also. Watching my two little ones build meaningful relationships with their “aunties” and “uncles” (my good friends) has been such a positive side effect.

    Kudos to you for scheduling and receiving help during this week of crazy! I hope your upcoming ‘flying solo’ weeks are filled with many visitors, friends and playdates.

  • Jennah April 2, 2013 at 10:30 am

    I thought I already commented this, but maybe not bc I don’t see it…anyway.

    Do you babywear at all? Like in an Ergo, woven wrap, or Moby? I love my woven wraps for when mine is fussy and I see them coming in even more handy when I have 2. You can give Ruby the snuggles she needs while also PLAYING TRAINS!! or whatever with G. Plus, they fall asleep when wrapped/worn a lot of the time!

  • Jess April 2, 2013 at 10:36 am

    I hate to even ask, but are you still doing Whole 30 eating?? Is this even possible with your schedule. I also second, triple the shower if you can get him in there. I let my three year old “toss” his toys if he is in the shower to get him in there. When I’m alone, one kid gets one bath the first night, and the second gets a bath the next night. Too hard to do that many baths day after day by yourself.

  • Rachel April 2, 2013 at 11:56 am

    2 weeks alone is lie, cheat, and steal territory. Would you consider hiring (cheap) help – a high school student for afternoons, or using disposable diapers to get you through those days?

  • Lindsay April 2, 2013 at 12:29 pm

    MODG – I have never commented here but I started reading your blog when I was pregnant. I now have a 2 week and 3 day old little girl (she is our first child) and I would just like to say THANK YOU. Thank you for being the kind of mom who doesn’t ONLY talk about what a blessing a new baby is and how being at home with your child(ren) is the best thing in the world. Don’t get me wrong – I know my little girl is a blessing and that having 8 weeks of maternity leave is a blessing and I am so blessidy blessed. There are people who will never have what I have, and I am thankful every day. BUT, I also think that not enough moms talk about how hard it is to have a newborn in your house and be responsible for feeding them from your gigantic, leaky boobs every 1-3 hours and console them when they are shrieking their adorable little head off when all you really want to do is sleep (read: cry). So…thank you for being real. It makes me feel like I’m not failing. You’re not failing either.

  • Theresita April 2, 2013 at 12:52 pm

    Eeek! So proud of you MODG! You totally need some wine, and candy from Trader Joe’s!

  • tara April 2, 2013 at 2:04 pm

    Oh my god that picture of Ruby crying is so cute and hilarious at the same time! Glad you have had some help!

  • lindsey April 2, 2013 at 3:13 pm

    You crack me up. I am about to have my 3rd baby any day and my husband is at work 24/7… just wrote a similar post on my blog …. now that I’ve read yours I realize that I wrote a PC version of the truth. Your version is the real truth!

  • Lluvia April 2, 2013 at 8:59 pm

    aaaawwww…They are both so adorable!!
    Looks like you have this!!! Girl, mine bathes every other day and she’s 3!!!! In my defense, she has extremely dry skin, so her doctor has recommended baths every other day, until she’s a bit older. But I do love her baths! I get to clean the bathroom and master bedroom, while she bathes and do laundry which is also on the same floor, and nearby, where I can check on her regularly. She loves baths, and I get to do other stuff.

  • Shannon April 3, 2013 at 10:28 am

    It’s called venting, Sara. Life changes and so do the people living them. Her life may have been more exciting to YOU when it was all about the martinis, but now there are diaper genies. People grow up. I’m sure MODG wouldn’t trade her current life (as crazy as it may be at times) with her “martinis” life for anything. Keep on keepin’ on, MODG!

  • Gracie April 3, 2013 at 12:58 pm

    Ruby Lee is unbearably cute. Good job accepting help. Hey, what are your thoughts on current housewives situations? I’m sure you have time to watch/write about it for my entertainment. Keep on keepin’ on, guuurl!

  • Carolyn April 3, 2013 at 3:50 pm

    I googled “successful napping for babies” and up popped your napping post from a few years ago. Your kiddos are adorable and you are hilarious! Added you to my blog list. Yay! Also… regarding this current post… my husband will be taking a few work related trips this year and I’ll be all alone with my now 3 week old son. He’s a pretty good baby but give me about a month until husband leaves for 3 days and enter anxiety! I’m already concerned enough about making sure Jackson is still breathing but being alone… I just don’t wanna think about it… and I only have one!

  • David April 4, 2013 at 1:05 am

    I was the only househusband I knew starting back in 1981, ending in 1988, with four kids. At one time I had 3 kids in diapers. And just to show you how much fun it can be on occasion, I remember one time successfully carrying my first child (age 18 mos) down the stairs with a basket full of dirty clothes (his) as well as a diaper pail (also his), got to the bottom of the stairs, reached one leg over the baby gate, unhooked the baby gate, set it aside using my foot, finished going down the stairs without dropping baby, clothes hamper, or worse (the diaper pail) and with my spare thumb and finger, unlocked and opened the front door. So, yes, sometimes it seems that you only have a spare thumb and finger for yourself and others, but hang in there—it was loads of fun and will be for you too.