This Page

has been moved to new address

Fairly Odd Mother

Sorry for inconvenience...

Redirection provided by Blogger to WordPress Migration Service
body { background:#fff url("") 50% 0; margin:0; padding:0 10px; text-align:center; font:x-small Verdana,Arial,Sans-serif; color:#333; font-size/* */:/**/small; font-size: /**/small; } /* Page Structure ----------------------------------------------- */ @media all { #content { background:url("") no-repeat 250px 50px; width:700px; margin:0 auto; padding:50px 0; text-align:left; } #main { width:450px; float:right; padding:50px 0 20px; font-size:85%; } #main2 { background:url("") -100px -100px; padding:20px 10px 15px; } #sidebar { width:200px; float:left; font-size:85%; padding-bottom:20px; } #sidebar2 { background:url("") 150px -50px; padding:5px 10px 15px; width:200px; width/* */:/**/180px; width: /**/180px; } } @media handheld { #content { width:90%; } #main { width:100%; float:none; } #sidebar { width:100%; float:none; } #sidebar2 { width:100%; } } html>body #main, html>body #sidebar { /* We only give this fade from white to nothing to browsers that can handle 24-bit transparent PNGs */ background/* */:/**/url("") repeat-x left bottom; } /* Title & Description ----------------------------------------------- */ @media all { #blog-title { margin:0 0 .5em; font:250%/1.4em Georgia,Serif; color:#353; } #blog-title a { color:#353; text-decoration:none; } #description { margin:0 0 1.75em; color:#996; } #blog-mobile-title { display:none; } #description-mobile { display:none; } } @media handheld { #blog-title { display:none; } #description { display:none; } #blog-mobile-title { display:block; margin:0 0 .5em; font:250%/1.4em Georgia,Serif; color:#353; } #blog-mobile-title a { color:#353; text-decoration:none; } #description-mobile { display:block; margin:0 0 1.75em; color:#996; } } /* Links ----------------------------------------------- */ a:link { color:#488; } a:visited { color:#885; } a:hover { color:#000; } a img { border-width:0; } /* Posts ----------------------------------------------- */ .date-header { margin:0 0 .75em; padding-bottom:.35em; border-bottom:1px dotted #9b9; font:95%/1.4em Georgia,Serif; text-transform:uppercase; letter-spacing:.3em; color:#663; } .post { margin:0 0 2.5em; line-height:1.6em; } .post-title { margin:.25em 0; font:bold 130%/1.4em Georgia,Serif; color:#333; } .post-title a, .post-title strong { background:url("") no-repeat 0 .25em; display:block; color:#333; text-decoration:none; padding:0 0 1px 45px; } .post-title a:hover { color:#000; } .post p { margin:0 0 .75em; } { margin:0; text-align:right; } em { display:block; float:left; text-align:left; font-style:normal; color:#996; } a.comment-link { /* IE5.0/Win doesn't apply padding to inline elements, so we hide these two declarations from it */ background/* */:/**/url("") no-repeat 0 .25em; padding-left:15px; } html>body a.comment-link { /* Respecified, for IE5/Mac's benefit */ background:url("") no-repeat 0 .25em; padding-left:15px; } .post img { margin:0 0 5px 0; padding:4px; border:1px solid #cca; } /* Comments ----------------------------------------------- */ #comments { margin:0; } #comments h4 { margin:0 0 10px; border-top:1px dotted #9b9; padding-top:.5em; font:bold 110%/1.4em Georgia,Serif; color:#333; } #comments-block { line-height:1.6em; } .comment-poster { background:url("") no-repeat 2px .35em; margin:.5em 0 0; padding:0 0 0 20px; font-weight:bold; } .comment-body { margin:0; padding:0 0 0 20px; } .comment-body p { margin:0 0 .5em; } .comment-timestamp { margin:0 0 .5em; padding:0 0 .75em 20px; color:#996; } .comment-timestamp a:link { color:#996; } .deleted-comment { font-style:italic; color:gray; } .paging-control-container { float: right; margin: 0px 6px 0px 0px; font-size: 80%; } .unneeded-paging-control { visibility: hidden; } /* More Sidebar Content ----------------------------------------------- */ .sidebar-title { margin:2em 0 .75em; padding-bottom:.35em; border-bottom:1px dotted #9b9; font:95%/1.4em Georgia,Serif; text-transform:uppercase; letter-spacing:.3em; color:#663; } #sidebar p { margin:0 0 .75em; line-height:1.6em; } #sidebar ul { margin:.5em 0 1em; padding:0 0px; list-style:none; line-height:1.5em; } #sidebar ul li { background:url("") no-repeat 3px .45em; margin:0; padding:0 0 5px 15px; } #sidebar p { margin:0 0 .6em; } /* Profile ----------------------------------------------- */ .profile-datablock { margin:0 0 1em; } .profile-img { display:inline; } .profile-img img { float:left; margin:0 8px 5px 0; border:4px solid #cc9; } .profile-data { margin:0; line-height:1.5em; } .profile-data strong { display:block; } .profile-textblock { clear:left; } /* Footer ----------------------------------------------- */ #footer { clear:both; padding:15px 0 0; } #footer hr { display:none; } #footer p { margin:0; } /* Feeds ----------------------------------------------- */ #blogfeeds { } #postfeeds { padding-left: 20px }

Fairly Odd Mother

Frantically waving my magic wand to make wishes come true.

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Thankful to have moved to a new chapter

I have a lot to give thanks for today, though one of the biggest things will not be discussed around the dinner table. But, she'll be sitting right there, surrounded by her brother, sister, two adoring cousins and the rest of the family.

I have written a little about what went on this spring and summer, when my vibrant oldest child suddenly stopped eating after getting sick in public with another friend's family. But, those months seem almost surreal now.

From a fear of food making her sick again, it became a fear of being away from me, and then a fear of leaving the house. It was sudden, shocking, sometimes violent and very scary.

We were lucky, though. We were able to get good help fast, help that is still there to talk to when we need it. We were able to put a common, much less scary name on it: Anxiety.

I have come to understand that her anxiety is probably like the anxiety that bubbles up in me far too often, but as a child, she doesn't know how to cope with it as well as I (or perhaps I have just found less visible signs of coping: grinding teeth, pacing, crying while driving so the kids can't see, shutting down to everyone around me when I need to focus, focus, focus or the world will spin out of control.)

Things are not "back to normal", though who knows what normal is anymore? But, I do know that she can eat again. She will play with friends. She laughs and explores and runs and tells funny stories, and I'm pretty sure anyone who sees her now would never know how tough things were in the middle of the year.

For all of this, I am so very thankful.

May you have much to be thankful for this Thanksgiving as well.

Labels: , ,

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Who will you support on Small Business Saturday? Here's my pick. . .

Thanks to American Express for sponsoring my writing today about small businesses. American Express is presenting Small Business Saturday, a way to honor the local merchants who are the backbone of the economy, this Saturday, November 27. They're offering statement credits to people who shop at small businesses, advertising for small-business owners, and donations to Girls Inc. for "Likes" of the Small Business Saturday page on Facebook. Join the celebration by clicking the "Like" button and then visiting the Facebook page to learn more about the program and read the terms and conditions that apply.

Long before Etsy, before I had Cool Mom Picks, before I had ever been to a craft show that featured things other than crocheted potholders, I had Oop.

Oop was a little store that opened on Thayer Street in Providence, RI back in 1990, the year after I graduated from college. It was colorful, eclectic, silly and totally unique, and I was hooked the first day I walked through those doors.

Full of local and not-so-local American craft and art from people I'd never see in the big-box stores, it was here that I found the funniest, most unusual cards and gifts for my friends and family.


It is where I drooled over Elise Moran's pretty jewelry and the super-colorful furniture by Sticks that cost way beyond what my media planner salary could ever afford. Where I would go back just to see what new things would be hanging in the windows or lying on the tables.

Years passed and I moved away, but I'd stop by Oop's new locations whenever I went down to Rhode Island: the small store tucked away in the Providence Place Mall and then, last winter, in downtown Providence across from Craftland.

This week, I found Oop's latest location: in the spankin' new Legacy Place shopping area in Dedham, MA. Isn't it fortuitous that it is even closer to me now?


And after writing for Cool Mom Picks for the past few years, I had to smile at how many products we've covered that I saw in front of me on my last visit to the store. No wonder I love my job so much---it reminds me of that day twenty years ago when a little store opened my world to what amazing things were out there to be discovered.

So tell me, what is your favorite small business? Feel free to leave their name and website address in the comments.

Are you a local? I also listed one of my favorite local toy shops--they gift wrap!--on Cool Mom Picks along with the rest of our staff.

Small Business Saturday

I was selected for this sponsorship by the Clever Girls Collective, which endorses Blog With Integrity, as I do.


Monday, November 22, 2010

Ubisoft's 12 Days of Giveaways: With Just Dance 2, I'm either the Ladies Dancing or the Lords a'Leaping

This post is part of a sponsored series from Ubisoft, celebrating "12 Days of Giveaways." See below for how you can enter up to 12 times to win fun and family-friendly video games.

Back in August, for one fleeting moment, I was a dancing queen.

You remember, right?

It was BlogHer 2010 in the Ubisoft booth on the Expo Floor. Battle of the Bloggers was taking place on the Just Dance 2 stage, and I had somehow won the semi-finals dancing to Beyonce's Crazy in Love.

So it was on to the finals, to dance to The Rockafeller Skank by Fatboy Slim. It was close, oh so close, but I didn't win. Though I did manage to get all of my limb-flailing and lip-biting on film for all to see.

Ever since seeing these videos, my kids have been bugging me for a copy of Just Dance 2, and they are leaping out of their skin knowing that one is on its way to our home Right Now. (the first didn't make it in here on time, but I've been assured a replacement is on its way; back away children) And just as soon as I can get goofy film of my family dancing? You can bet I'll post some video up for all to see. I'm fair like that.

(UPDATE: ok, I did get video of my husband and brother-in-law dancing to Jungle Boogie, but in the interest of preserving my marriage and family relations, I will not post it here. Instead you can read about my latest feelings about Just Dance 2 here)

Want your own copy of Just Dance 2? Leave me a comment below and tell me which song you'd pick first if you win.

CONTEST IS CLOSED! Congratulations to commenter #37, Greenlancer who will get to try out Proud Mary very soon.
Thanks to everyone who entered to win!
Can't wait? Just Dance 2 is also available on both Amazon and Toys-R-Us, though Amazon squeaks a dollar off the price.


Want more ways to win great games for the whole family? Visit each of these blogs during our 12 Days of Giveaways from now through December 3! Find their post from today and leave a comment to enter to win.

Please visit these participating bloggers for more chances to win games, including Just Dance 2 (Wii), Battle of Giants: Dinosaur Strike (Wii), Petz Fantasy (DS) and Petz Nursery (DS)!

I was selected to participate in this sponsored series by Ubisoft and Clever Girls Collective. I received a video game (it's on its way!) and compensation for my participation in this program. We believe in Blog With Integrity.

Labels: ,

Friday, November 19, 2010

Kitchen Catchup

I'm sure my loved ones, and my Twitter followers, are tired of me talking about Kitchen Reno 2010. I act like the first person to ever deal with the hardships of No Stove! No Kitchen Sink! And, the kicker, Why Did I Ever Get Rid of a Microwave?

Laura Ingalls is smirking at me from somewhere out there.

But I thought I'd share some recent photos for those who care about this sort of thing. I'm a bit giddy with excitement, especially since I now have a working stove and a kitchen sink! Also, my wood floors are showing again which makes the room look less "workspace-ish" than in these photos.




A few notes: Above the stove will be a big honking vent that had better work like the dickens since this is a huge reason we did this remodel (we had to move the stove to an exterior wall). Next week, the wall will be tiled and the awful painted faux tile will be gone forever!

And a couple of days ago, my countertops were installed. I kissed them when I finally saw them. That's normal, right? This is Spyder Soapstone and I love, love, love it. I haven't oiled it yet, but this is the color wet which should be pretty close to what it'll look like oiled:


And, in case you forgot, here is what my old kitchen looked like just a few short weeks ago.

More photos to follow soon!


Thursday, November 18, 2010


It's November which can only mean that my Reader has exploded with people keeping up with some abbreviated form of I'm going to write a blog post every day for the month of November.

I guess the idea is that daily writing is important to perfect the craft of writing, which I could probably use, but I honestly don't get it. Especially when the daily post is I don't have anything to say but I needed to put something on my blog before midnight.

I love the other November daily writing exercise which has to do with starting a novel and writing every day during the month until it is complete---I think this is a neat idea with real merit. But, the daily blogging thing makes me weep when I open up my Reader and see how many posts I have not read, will never get to read, especially with the holiday crush already upon us.

The one good thing about this daily blog posting is that one of my favorites, Halushki, has come out of retirement to write.

Me though? I'm going to lay low for a while longer until the month is over. The internet is already noisy enough.


Thursday, November 11, 2010

Breaking down the dance barrier for boys

My son is now a dancer.

Here's how we got there:

My girls started at a new dance studio this year since their former teacher retired. When I was signing them up in August, my son D announced he wanted to take "breakdancing".

As if fate was smiling down on him, I learned that this studio was testing out a new class: Hip Hop for Boys, ages 5-7.

Looking around the waiting room at all the class photos on the wall, it is clear that, at least in our part of the state, dance classes are almost exclusively filled with girls. Only one boy smiles out from those photos, year after year.

And back in August, the studio's owner told me she needed five boys to run this new Hip Hop class, and so far had only two committed students. It didn't look good.

Not knowing if D would even do a dance class, I agreed to let him test out the first class. He was one of eight little boys who showed up that day.

Today,there are about 14 boys in that class. Word of mouth has spread fast and there is now talk that there may be enough boys interested to do two classes next year.

How did this class go from zero to 14 so quickly? It's the teacher of course. Mr. D is a big man with amazing moves and a Drill-Sergeant's voice. A Drill Sergeant who smiles often, never yells in anger and seems to genuinely like all the kids who line up in front of him for an hour a week.

I have never, ever seen 14 little boys listen and watch so quietly and politely, especially at the end of day on a Friday, when most of them are probably dying to just run around and scream like banshees.

On the first day, there were probably as many fathers as mothers in the waiting room. I have no doubt this was because the dads were thinking my son wants to do what? and had to see this for themselves. Many of these dads come back, week after week, because the class is too much fun to watch from behind the one-way glass.

Along with stretching and practicing specific moves, each boy is called to the middle of the room, alone, to do his own freestyle. At that very first class, every single boy got out there and danced, alone in front of strangers, for about thirty seconds.

D's "freestyle" looks like a cross between self-flagellation, the Worm and 1980's hair-band thrashing. I've never seen hip-hop like it, and yet I've never heard Mr. D tell the boys to change what they are doing in their freestyle. There is no "right" or "wrong", and so there is no chance to fail or be ridiculed.

But, this is only one class. In all the other classes, I've only seen a couple of male faces. My son pronounced the other day, Ballet is for girls, hip-hop is for boys so he is by no means gender-neutral now that he is taking a dance class.

But, maybe this kind of class will help make people more comfortable with letting boys express themselves in a way outside of traditional sports. After all, I'm pretty sure Justin Timberlake and Usher didn't learn their moves playing soccer or hockey.

Labels: ,

Wednesday, November 03, 2010

Wordless Wednesday: Leaping

We've submitted our application:


I'll know in a short while if we will be public-school-sanctioned homeschoolers. Or virtual schoolers. Or oh-my-goodness-what-have-we-done-and-do-you-really-need-our-immunization-records-you-do-realize-you-can't-catch-anything-through-the-computer schoolers.

Labels: , ,