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Category Archives: trying to work part-time when you have kids

Leaning out


Everyone is all abuzz about the latest book from one of America’s top female executives.

Sheryl Sandberg has published a book titled “Lean In,” outlining out women can succeed in today’s world, and how they can avoid holding themselves back.

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“Oh look at me..I am so happy and perfect. I am not afraid of success like all of you losers…Oh and I wear all white clothing and never get stains on them….”

She suggests that many women fear if they climb too high at the office then they won’t have enough time for their children.

She offers ways to get over that and “lean in” towards your career goals instead of “pushing away” from success in order to care for the children that you chose to bring into this world.

Well Sheryl…I am leaning out.

The only thing "leaning" around here is this stack of dirty laundry...and no this is not a reenactment...it's my real life on Sunday mornings.

The only thing “leaning” around here is this stack of dirty laundry…and no this is not a reenactment…it’s my real life on Sunday mornings.

I am sure that she hasn’t become one of Fortune’s list of the 50 Most Powerful Women in Business and as one of Time’s 100 Most Influential People in the World, by sitting around joining playgroups and making fun of Kim Kardashian on her blog…but still.

These women crack me up.  She says that when we stop being afraid of success we can “pursue our goals with gusto!”

The only thing I am doing with “gusto” around here is drinking and consuming carbs.  Is it not enough that you are a gazillionaire Sheryl?  Do you have to rub our noses in it? Do you have to tell us that it is within our reach to be successful but it’s our own stupid faults for being afraid of success?

I am not afraid of success…I wish I was successful.  I wish I could be writing this from Lisa Vanderplump’s mansion in Beverly Hill right now.  That would be totally awesome.  What I am afraid of is raising two monsters who will grow up being cared for by a series of nannies and after-school programs to be fat, disrespectful, idiots with no family values.

I have mentioned that I sell push-up bras part-time.”  That 20 hours of menial work has taken me away from conferences, games and having dinner with my family many times.  If my little job takes up my time, let’s try to imagine all the time that it takes for Sheryl to be a COO of a Fortune 500 company.

Let’s face facts, there’s no way that Sheryl is interacting regularly or (dare I say), as much as she should with her children, and she states in the book that she herself has grappled with guilt and concern for her children.

Her message is push that guilt and worry aside and reach for the gold! You can do it women!!

Great Sheryl – now you are even making the women who are working feel bad.  Can’t you just enjoy the view from your spacious Facebook office and your Louboutin and white sweater collection and leave us alone?

Look at my "leaning" tower of magazines that I haven't gotten to yet....(and yes instead of learning his alphabet enjoys drawing moustaches on models...so what?)

Oh Sheryl speaking of “leaning”….look at my “leaning” tower of magazines that I haven’t gotten to yet….(and yes instead of learning his alphabet Sam enjoys drawing moustaches on models…so what?)

I have chosen to bring these two boys to life and I feel it’s my responsiblity to be with them as much as I can.  I have to say Sheryl say she does not look down upon stay-at-home parents, she just secretly thinks we are all big fat losers.

I would love nothing more than to go full-steam ahead with my push-up bra career, but to what end?  We have to be real – when you choose to “lean in” and focus so intently on career, who are leaving something or someone behind.  That is just fact.

Who is watching this woman’s children? Who is tucking them in at night? Who is getting them off of the bus or watching their soccer game?  If  hired help or even a husband is doing all of that, then that is a very conscious decision that one must make as a mother.

Oh Sheryl, look at these leaning condiments...do you think they are just going to replace themselves??

Oh and Sheryl, look at these leaning condiments…do you think they are just going to replace themselves??

Sheryl says on her blog, “Together, we can create a world where everyone—women and men, girls and boys—has true choice and equal opportunity to follow his or her dreams.”

She seems very nice and positive, but this is simply not true.

I have said many times that Mr. Gaga is extremely supportive, very helpful with the children and the household chores, and is possibly one of the most patient and loving men I know.   Yet none of that takes any weight off my shoulders.  Simply because he is not a mom, he will never be a mom and that is innately the trouble with this whole debate.

We will never be equal.  Men and women are inherently different and always will be.  Maybe we would feel better if we could accept that a little bit, take off our power suits and just know that there are no answers to having it all and there never will be.

For my purposes, I am decidedly “leaning out.”  With no real Fortune magazine-worthy career to escape to….I am here for the better part of Sam and Michael’s childhood wallowing in guilt and self-pity just as much as all of the working moms are for different reasons.

This was the last time I "leaned in" for something. I was trying to listen to the weather report to be sure I heard correctly that my kids would have their 10th day off from school due to snow.

This is me “leaning in” to make sure I am hearing correctly all of the insane bullshit that mothers say aloud in this town on a regular basis….

I asked a friend (who appears to juggle 3 children’s busy activities, a household and a career with “gusto.”) if she was happy with her life.

Her answer was very interesting to me.  She thought about it and went on to list some concerns, stuff she worries about and some parenting she thinks could use improvement on.  She stopped to think about other moms she knew that seemed to be “doing it all.”

She said , “You know now that I think about it I can’t think of one mother I know that would answer that question by saying, ‘Yes, I think I am doing a great job.”

Isn’t that sad? Isn’t it the crux of everything? That we will never be fulfilled either way?

And do people have to keep writing books and talking about it in circles?

LEAVE US THE FUCK ALONE SHERYL!! YOU ARE FREAKING US OUT!!!

Can’t I just watch Real Housewives of Beverly Hills and eat 500 Cadbury mini eggs in peace?

Now off she goes to sell 80 million books and rake in some more dough because basically we are so desperate for answers we will read anything.

Sigh.

You know things are bad when I miss “50 Shades of Gray.”

IF YOU LIKE THIS POST PLEASE SHARE ON FACEBOOK THIS WEEK!! I GREATLY APPRECIATE IT;)

XO, LADY GOO GOO GAGA

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A Meaningful Life


Here’s a little back story on Lady G.

I went to a prestigious New England prep school for highschool, where my horizons were broadened and I found a great appreciation for learning.

I went on to college, various internships and jobs in television production, PR, marketing.  Ultimately, Mr. Gaga and I ended up in Connecticut. I worked for a nonprofit doing program development, fundraising and grant writing.

Doing good works was not part of my plan. It’s not exactly what I thought was my cup of tea.

I found it a challenge, yet also found it fulfilling and worthwhile.  I felt good about working a 12 hour day to benefit sick children.  I felt much better about that than I did working a 12 hour day for Viacom.

When I was pregnant with Sam, the nonprofit shut its doors and I ended up home with a one-year-old, by default.

Something else that was not part of my plan.

While also rewarding and fulfilling in some ways, I have struggled to find myself and find meaning in life as a stay-at-home mom.

I have found it difficult to consider my children my sole reason for being.  I have shuddered to think that I was put on this earth to raise 2 children, grocery shop and keep the toilets clean.

Very early on I started working a mindless part-time job just to keep myself sane.  Let’s say for the sake of anonymity I sell push-up bras.  I help women to look good and feel good.  It’s fun. It’s harmless. Meaningful? Not so much.

This week I went to the CT Forum to hear a panel discussion on leading a meaningful life.

The panel included smart important people who were doing great things in the world.  One of the panelists was Tim Shriver, who besides being the son of Eunice Kennedy and Sargent Shriver, is the chairman of the Special Olympics.  He also went to Yale undergrad, and then to about 65 other schools to collect various degrees, and has 5 children, looks like a Kennedy, and is brother-in-laws with Arnold Schwarzenegger.

Around the time that Tim racked up yet another degree, I could be found doing very important works like emptying the dishwasher twice a day and organizing Legos.

Around the time that Tim racked up yet another degree, I could be found doing very important works like emptying the dishwasher twice a day and organizing Legos.

He was so dynamic when he spoke about the meaning of life, and how important it is to give back and to be someone who makes change in the world.

He has done so much and in the midst of it all his hair is always that perfect Kennedy hair that gives you hope and makes you feel all is right with the world.

It made me think about what I do.

You know…sell push up bras….clean the occasional toilet…..make dinner.

Hmmm.

Another panelist was a man named Larry Brilliant.  He has among other small tasks, headed the philanthropic arm of Google, cured 3 million people of blindness, and eradicated small pox.

The man is a genius, so I understand that I could never even dream of accomplishing anything that he has.

However the fact that while these people are changing the world, I am earnestly attempting to teach my husband and kids how to change the toilet paper, I literally cannot keep track of the socks of the 4 people who live in my house and  I have looked at my 2nd grader’s homework and found it overwhelming….probably indicates a slight problem.

“What am I going to do with my life?  You don’t understand because you have a purpose and your life has meaning….” I said to Mr. Gaga the next day with despair.

“Your life has meaning too, with your family.” he answered simply.

“That’s it? That’s my whole life? Just being a mom?” I asked incredulously.

“Yup.”

“What? That can’t be it! I don’t even think I am doing a good job with that…they watch SpongeBob and swear.” I said throwing myself onto my bed with dramatics.

“What will my tombstone say? Here lies Lady G, she sold push-up bras and called kids assholes on her blog?  And what about when the kids leave? What will I do then??”

“It will be time for us to be together, and enjoy life.” he said with a smile, imagining us probably on a beach somewhere loving each other.

All I could see in my mind were the creepy old people in the Cymbalta ad.

“WHAT?? NO!!!! I hate that plan!!! That’s a horrible plan!!!!

I stayed home emptying the dishwasher for 20 years for this?

I stayed home emptying the dishwasher for 20 years for this?

“Ok, great!” Mr. Gaga answered sarcastically, “Then go get a job you crazy bitch!”

(He didn’t say “crazy bitch” but I could see it in his eyeballs that he wanted to. He generally is very nice and patient, but can only take so much.)

Well, you will probably be working and the kids will be gone, and I will be home with like 5 cats….I guess I will just stare out the window and pet the cats all day.” I said with disgust.

“We are not getting cats….I hate cats.” he said firmly.

“So do I!!! I would never want a cat…but I think that when you are alone all the time with nothing to do that’s what happens! That’s the point! Your life is so boring and empty that you forget that you hate cats and you turn into a crazy cat lady.”

He just stared at me.

cats

How can I raise two children successfully and be fully invested in that, and still find a way to preserve a piece of myself, while simultaneously keeping Mr. Gaga around?

Does anyone have the answers??

This is probably why I have the tendency to be Lindsay Lohan…..just sayin.

It’s just not as easy as Tim Shriver’s hair makes it look.

PLEASE CLICK THE LINK BELOW …IT WILL MAKE ME FEEL LIKE I HAVE A PLACE IN THE WORLD….XO, LADY GOO GOO GAGA

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What I Learned 2012


As I looked back over my blog entries for 2012 I realized that it has been a long and interesting year.

I have learned a lot about myself and more importantly about all of you and what you find interesting and what you can relate to.

My most-read post of the year was my letter, “Dear Beyonce” which was posted after she rented an entire floor of a hospital in New York City to give birth to her child.

I actually received a lot of hate comments for that one, as well as praise.  If you review the comments you will notice some insane Beyonce lovers chimed in…..

Was this post so popular because those of us who are mothers like to warn new moms what to expect?

Or is it sadly that we have become a celebrity-obsessed culture that reads US Weekly as regularly and whole-heartedly as generations before us would read Time and Newsweek?  That we are just so obsessed with every minute detail of the lives of the rich and famous that we tune in to read about anything diva-related?

Sadly, as an avid US Weekly reader, I think it’s the latter.

In the beginning of last year, I was grappling with how to work and maintain my household, my sanity and not let looks go completely down the toilet.

This is me making a quick run to the grocery store after getting home late from work.........

This is me making a quick run to the grocery store after getting home late from work………with blatant disregard for my moustache and camel-toe…..

In the spring, I hadn’t much headway in the looks department, but I had at least stopped working as much so I had time to sleep.  I shared how I still am trying to catch up on sleep I lost when I was breastfeeding.

I also, shared a tale of how I was sleeping so soundly that I didn’t wake up in time to save my poor brother from seeing my boob hanging out of my shirt one morning.

I have mentioned before how my boobs have really become deformed since the children destroyed my body from head to toe….my poor, poor brother.

I am pretty sure this is what my brother saw – except I have a lighter skin-tone and I wasn’t holding that stick…..Also – my wife beater was from the Old Navy, not her fancy cow one….

I am pretty sure this is what my brother saw – except I have a lighter skin-tone and I wasn’t holding that stick…..Also – my wife beater was from the Old Navy, not her fancy cow one….

This spring, as 50 Shades of Grey hit the shelves, I learned a lot about trends in America for women.  First, I was shocked to discover that apparently everyone just has oodles of time to sit home and masturbate all day while they fantasize about being handcuffed and beaten.

Who knew?

breakfast bubble

Then, just as I was recovering from this news, I had to find out that women right and left were chowing down on their own placenta.  

As if that wasn’t offensive enough, “ways of feeding American children” reached a new low when Alicia Silverstone was all over the news demonstrating how she chews up food and spits it into her child’s mouth.

This kind of weird parenting could result in children that are complete freaks.

They could end up being total cry babies, that whine and complain about everything….

This was the behavior that basically every child exhibited on my son’s baseball team this summer.

Oh and while the boys roam the fields looking for mushrooms and shit their pants while they are running to the wrong base, their parents could care less.

It was absolutely astonishing. Hopefully next season will be better!

This dad of one of the players, put his IPhone in his pocket for a minute, looked up and realized that his son was in the outfield picking flowers and had shit his pants, so he quickly started got on his phone again......

This dad of one of the players, put his iPhone in his pocket for a minute, looked up and realized that his son was in the outfield picking flowers and had shit his pants, so he quickly started got on his phone again……

After baseball was over, we went on a crazy “vacation” with my in-laws, and then went to the beach for the rest of the summer, which was lovely.

Then we started to get ready for back-to-school, which is when I noticed how offensive the Pottery Barn Kids catalogue was…..

In the classic Pottery Barn style which aims to make us feel badly about our homes, bedding, and lives….the PB Kids version, now aims to make us feel bad about our kids lunches and what we put them in……

Please note that the sandwich has been fashioned into some sort of exotic daisy and a dipping sauce has been made available as part of Blair's very balanced meal....

Please note that the sandwich has been fashioned into some sort of exotic daisy and a dipping sauce has been made available as part of Blair’s very balanced meal….If any kindergartener had any doubt about if Blair’s mother loved her or not…I think it will be quite clear after this lunch is revealed……

In October, we were yet again devastated by a storm.

You would think we would be prepared since the last storm, but we weren’t.

So I had to brave the stores searching for batteries and water.  It wasn’t pretty.

Don't be fooled, under that pillow this lady was hiding 75 packages of D Batteries and 8 flashlights.

Don’t be fooled, under that pillow this lady was hiding 75 packages of D Batteries and 8 flashlights.

We survived with minimal damage, but I hosted my Thanksgiving run and raised money for victims of Storm Sandy in New York.

In December, I have taken a lot of time to reflect on life and the world that we live in after the absolutely heart-breaking school shooting that happened here in Connecticut.

We have a lot to think about and change to make sure that our children can grow up safe and happy and healthy.

But when I had a spare moment during the holidays, I did have time to make fun of people who decorate their vehicles with antlers and noses.

What does this even mean? Your vehicle is a reindeer? Does your car pull a sleigh? Will your car fly on Christmas Eve?? Why are you doing this?? WHY????

What does this even mean? Your vehicle is a reindeer? Does your car pull a sleigh? Will your car fly on Christmas Eve?? Why are you doing this?? WHY????

In closing, it has been a great year for Lady Goo Goo Gaga, and I hope to continue learning and growing and sharing my stories.

Thank you all for reading every week!! And for CLICKING ON THE BANNER BELOW!!!!

Please leave me a comment letting me know what was your favorite post of 2012….BESIDES “DEAR BEYONCE!!!”

Happy New Year!! XO, LADY GOO GOO GAGA

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Christmas Tree Take 2


So this December I am thankfully not working as much as I was last year at this time.

I am working enough that it is still difficult to squeeze in all the holiday cheer.  I am taking the kids to see Santa tonight and they are going on the North Pole Express Friday night.

Saturday I am working – so I thought I would give Mr. Gaga another chance to get a Christmas tree without me.

Last year we almost filed for divorce around this time – so it’s serious.

He has strict instructions to:

1- Take children to Christmas tree farm

2 – Pick out a Christmas tree

3 – Tie tree to vehicle

4 – Get back into the vehicle and return home

Do you think he can do it???

Let’s revisit what happened last year………..

IT’S A WONDERFUL LIFE….FOR MY HUSBAND

(reposted from 12/2011)

So because I have been working more than usual and can barely get my chores done, when Christmas decorating, baking, cards, shopping, wrapping, etc is added to the mix ……forget it.

I have thrown my hands up in the air – and started to delegate a lot to Mr. Gaga.

Also – I have had to let some things go.

Some activities I simply cannot do.

The parent volunteer sign-up sheet for my preschooler’s class went right in the garbage – along with the order forms and catalogues for the pie and wrapping paper fundraiser. (sorry PTO – maybe next year ….but let’s be honest….probably not)

Traditionally, we go cut down our tree the same day as my parents, cousins, aunts and uncles, brother, etc.

We spend the day at the farm tailgating.

This is Mr. Gaga at the Christmas tree tailgate party, contemplating which tree to get.....

This is Mr. Gaga at the Christmas tree tailgate party, contemplating which tree to get…..

Let me be clear in case you find this an odd tradition – my husband would tailgate at funerals if they let him.   Any excuse to start an open fire and stand around it for hours on end talking, drinking and eating…..

This year – I just couldn’t find a day that worked – so I gave up and told Mr. Gaga to go without me last Saturday morning.  I told him to go early and come home in the afternoon, that way he could put the tree up – and start dinner.  I would get home around 7, we could eat dinner and then trim the tree as a family.

Mind you – this was at the end of a long 50 hour work week for me and Sunday would be the start of another one – so we really only had this small window of time to decorate the tree and have some family time.

Do you know when I got home at 7:15 PM…… hungry and tired, looking forward to dinner and a glass of wine and Christmas cheer……..

Mr. Gaga and my tree were NOT HOME YET.

Do you understand what I am telling you?

Not only was the tree not UP WITH LIGHTS ON IT…..

…….it was not FUCKING HOME.

Do you know at the end of “It’s a Wonderful Life” when George Bailey comes home and wants to kill everyone – and he kicks all the presents and says “Janie will you stop playing that lousy piano?” and then he goes up the stairs and wants to throw the piece of the banister on the floor…..that was me.

I wanted to kick everything and murder my husband.

I trudged into the cold, dark house.

I turned on the lights.

The chicken I had put out that morning to defrost (that should now have been in a fajita) was on the counter sitting limply in a defrosted pile.

The morning coffee cups and breakfast dishes were on the counter.

The morning newspaper was strewn about.

The sink was filled with dirty dishes and……

wait for it……

the dishwasher needed to be emptied.

I went ballistic.

Instead of calling and yelling at Mr. Welch – I called Mr. Gaga and told him he was a motherfucker…..then I went out into town looking for a bridge to jump from……

I slammed all the pots and pans and started making dinner.
I swore out loud for twenty minutes calling my husband every bad name I could think of.
And then I did what George Bailey would do in my position.
I cried.
When my husband came home Sam was asleep already – which further sent me into a tirade.
I informed Mr. Gaga – that because he chose to stand around looking at a fire pit and eating sausage and peppers for 14 hours – now Christmas was destroyed.
Poor Michael still had hope – so after I cooked and ate dinner by myself – because NOBODY WAS HUNGRY BECAUSE THEIR FATHER GAVE THEM HOT DOGS ALL DAY…..
I tried to put the lights up with Mr. Gaga while not speaking to him and simultaneously sending him hateful vibes through the pine needles.

What’s the big deal? Why are you crying? Are you crying about coming home to raw chicken on the counter and a messy house or is it because I am an idiot?

Michael waited patiently to hang the ornaments, snuggled on the couch in his PJ’s.  When we finally finished putting up the lights, and were ready to hang ornaments, I looked over at him and he was fast asleep.
This broke my heart.  I reminded Mr. Gaga once more that the kids will never be 4 1/2 and 6 again – and they couldn’t decorate the tree this year because of him and that he single-handedly destroyed Christmas for all of us.
I finished decorating the tree by myself until midnight…..crying.
Is this just a horrible Christmas tale or what?
This seems to always happen to me!
I am so frantically trying to create happy memories for myself and my kids every year, and every year it ends in disaster.
I am determined to have Christmas cheer!!!!
I am Clark Griswold.
“You’re doing too much – just stay home and empty the dishwasher and decorate the tree. Nobody’s husband is doing everything with the kids, cooking chicken, and emptying the dishwasher….forget it.” my BF lectured me.
“So you are saying this is all my fault for going to work?” I yelled.
“No – I am saying that you have created chaos by working all these hours – so just don’t get mad when nothing gets done.  It’s just not going to get done until you get home and do it yourself.”
What a horrible answer.
Sadly – she’s probably right.
All I know is that I can’t do it all alone – and I especially can’t do it all alone at Christmas-time.
I think Mr. Gaga got the message. He has been helping much more and I eventually started speaking to him on Tuesday…….
Tis the Season!!!!
Please click on the banner below to give me a vote for funniest mom in America:) Thanks!! XOXOXO LADY GOO GOO GAGA

“Having it All”


As the election approaches there is a lot of talk about the state of women in this country.  I was lucky enough to be invited by my mother last week to the CT Forum, which is an organization that hosts panelists to discuss topics and ideas in a live, unscripted venue.

The topic was “The State of Women,” and the panel included Ashley Judd and Gloria Steinem.  Besides just watching the event, my mother had gotten us seats at a pre-show cocktail party and dinner where we could mingle with the celebrity panelists.

Although we were supposed to be taking all of these women’s issues very seriously, I had watched enough Oprah shows to secretly hope to throw back a martini with Ashley Judd and get to the bottom of what it was like to grow up with Wynonna and Naomi.

Although I was looking forward to it, this Friday night excursion couldn’t happen on a worse week.  I had booked myself to work everyday for 6 straight days, and Michael’s Halloween birthday party was Saturday afternoon.

Oh yeah, and I was working all day Saturday and would get home an hour before the party begun.

I spent the weeknights leading up to the party at the grocery store, filling pinatas, decorating and making spider cookies so that come Saturday I would be somewhat prepared.

Listen, if anyone ever wants to argue the point that I am not a good mother, I think it’s fair to say that all I have to do is show them this photo of my tarantula cookies to prove otherwise……(thank you Rachael Ray)

Needless to say – as usual,whenever work takes over, my house was completely trashed and laundry was to the ceiling.  I would need to do some cleaning before the party, or parents would be afraid to leave their children at my house!

By Friday, I was completely exhausted and overwhelmed.  I had to leave the house early to drive to work over an hour away in Fairfield County. The people I was working for were not happy that I had to leave early to head back so that I could go to the CT Forum event in Hartford.

Now on top of party stress, the house stress, the work stress, the exhaustion…..add to that…….the MERRITT PARKWAY ON A FRIDAY AT 5 PM.

If you have not experienced the lovely travelling conditions in Connecticut consider yourself lucky.

Oh, did I mention I was on the second day of my period?  That’s the day where if I am not by a toilet on the hour – I look like I have been in a slasher film from the 80’s.

2 hours later, I missed the entire cocktail hour.  I was ready to cry.

I knew my mother was going to be disappointed/mad, and also I really had wanted to corner Ashley and stare at her.  I was beyond annoyed as I peeled into a parking lot and waddled out of my car.

The dinner party was held at the Wadsworth Atheneum, which is essentially a small museum that I didn’t know my way around.  I desperately needed a restroom.  I entered the building where the party was being held.  I ran through the lobby and an abandoned ballroom.  I saw people filing into two dining rooms getting seated for dinner.

I wanted to find my seat before everyone was seated but there was no way.  I needed to change my tampon ASAP.

I  turned down an empty corridor and saw a small little door with a “woman symbol” on it.  Thankfully, I shoved the door open and found myself in a very small little bathroom with just 2 tight little stalls in it.

As I looked into this small space this is what I saw:

Finally something fun happened in my life!!

I got to change my tampon next to Ashley Judd!!!

That made up for the fact that I didn’t get to drill her about her mother and sister like I had planned.

So after dinner we went to listen to these amazing women discuss many of the issues plaguing women today.

There was lots of great discussion, but in particular I was most interested in the topic of “women having it all.”

Here I was on the brink of a nervous breakdown from trying to DO IT ALL!  So I was interested in everyone’s answers to this question.

Can women today really have it all??

I don’t think so.

Mr. Gaga helped me incredibly, as usual, with the party.  On Saturday morning I left him home with a to-do list of things to do, which included cleaning up the house, putting up a tent outside and decorating it, setting up fog machines, tying up pinatas…..the list was endless.

He fully supports me going to work and takes the kids to their games and parties when I am not available.  I have even been known to dump them off at his workplace.

While I know I am lucky to have a supportive husband, it doesn’t mean I can “have it all.”

I am the one making the “to-do list.” I am the one going to the store at 10 PM buying 16 perfect pumpkins to decorate.  I am the one in the craft store looking for little skull candies to decorate 75 cake pops.

I am the one up all night worrying while Mr. Gaga snores.

I am the one envisioning this cake and wondering if Michael will like it, and how I will get the black frosting out of his white vampire shirt…..

So maybe I didn’t actually make this cake all by myself…..

But I had to think about it! I had to find it in a Halloween desserts book!! I had to hire someone to create it!!!

This is what mothers do!  Mr Gaga, God love him, would hand out Halloween Oreos and call it a day.

So can we have it all? Can we even do it all?

I know I can’t.

Or if I can I sure as hell don’t look good doing it.

Because guess what? If I go to work, and I make it to the CT Forum with my mother, and the party is a success, and my house is clean……chances are I have let my own needs go by the wayside.

This means I haven’t had time for the gym, sleep, dying my gray hair or waxing my moustache.

I sure am glad that everyone appreciated the Halloween party……                                                        This is what I look like as a result , so I hope you are all happy.

I feel a bit duped by my mother’s generation.

They said we could go to college. They said we could be “the boss.”

They said we were just as smart smarter than the boys.

They said we could have a career and a family.

They told us that we could do it all.

They were so high on marijuana excited about the new freedoms for women in the 1970’s, that they believed the sky was the limit!

They thought that the glass ceiling would be gone and everything would be perfect for us.

“You can have it all,” they would whisper in our ears, as they tucked us into bed.

And we believed them.

There was no doubt in my mind when I saw Geraldine Ferraro campaigning for vice-president that a woman would someday be president.

I absolutely believed that I would go to college, have a career and have a family.

That would be what I did.  It would just work.

But it really doesn’t always work!

And even if it looks like it’s working, we are filled with guilt and doubts.

These are feelings that men can never take over for us, no matter how much they are helping.

Let’s face it……even the best Dad in the world isn’t a mom.

I just don’t know if it’s possible.

But Gloria’s answer to this was perfect!

“I just want to say, why aren’t men asked about having it all?  Until men are asked about having it all, it will mean that women are doing it all….”

Ok Gloria, well-said but I still don’t know the answer.

Do any of you women out there feel like you can do it all or have it all??

If so, share your secrets with me!!!

And in the meantime – while we are all trying to conquer the world is it too much to ask for someone to make us a goddamn tampon that lasts more than an hour??

PLEASE SHARE THIS ON FACEBOOK AND SEE IF WE CAN CONQUER THIS DILEMMA WITH SOME GOOD OLD FASHIONED SOCIAL MEDIA!!!!! 

I LOOK FORWARD TO HEARING ALL OF YOUR SECRETS:)
XO, LADY GOO GOO GAGA

A Clean Break


When I got laid off ages ago, I had a 9 month old baby and was pregnant with my second child. It seemed that the best option at that time was for me to stay home for a while taking care of my children.

It was during this time, when I was clearly overwhelmed, tired and confused that I fired the cleaning lady to cut costs.  I  figured that I could take care of the housekeeping since I would be home with two babies with nothing else to do but clean.

Little did I know that housecleaning is a full-time job in itself. 

Little did I know that when you are home with kids you have to clean the kitchen alone, 3-5 times a day. 

Little did I know that when you add to that the laundry, going to the grocery store and cooking dinner, and just the necessary picking up of toys so you don’t actually fall and break your leg, the entire day is gone. 

Little did I know that if I could carve out a spare minute in the day I might want to take a nap or a shower and that any frivolous extra cleaning would be too much.

Little did I know I effing hate cleaning and I don’t want to be a housecleaner. 

Come to find out – I want more from life than mopping floors and vacuuming.

So, maybe dusting, scrubbing grout, or cleaning the windows fell by the wayside a bit.  Maybe the kids put fingerprints on the walls and scribbled on the refrigerator and I didn’t get a chance to wipe it off.  Maybe they press their mouths and hands on the front glass door and I don’t think to Windex it afterwards, maybe the spill Cheerios and I know some goes under the couch but I don’t feel like moving furniture……

Before you know it you are living in a shit-hole.

And P.S.  – in the midst of the life of a stay-at-home mom – with the feeding and the nursing and the diapers – I don’t actually give two shits if there’s dust in my dining room or a stray cheerio under my formula-stained couch.

And P.P.S. – I didn’t go to college to sit around and wipe butts and empty the dishwasher – and I actually don’t really feel like cleaning the windows or cleaning the top of the refrigerator. 

Even when I would put my best foot forward – and really try to keep up with the housework – what actually would end up happening is that the mess would never go away. Despite my best efforts – my housecleaning duties and chores NEVER get done completely.

I was complaining about this – years ago – to one of Mr. Gaga’s aunts. 

Mr. Gaga’s aunts and mother typically spend 11 hours a day drinking coffee, smoking cigarettes and playing scrabble, so there’s lots of time to chat.

When it's not their turn - they have time to chat and dole out parenting tips.....

“I just feel like I clean one room, then I go to the next room and clean that, and then when I go back to the first room it’s dirty again.  I can’t ever get anything done, my house is perpetually trashed…it’s impossible.”

Aunt Cathy looked at me and said in her raspy voice :

“You know I used to be like you – and I used to drive myself crazy keeping the house clean.  One day I was cleaning the curtains and my sisters called me to see if I would meet them at the park with kids.  I told them that I had planned to clean the curtains and I couldn’t make it. ”

They said “Cath – your kids will remember that you took them to the park – they won’t remember how clean your curtains are.”

Aunt Cathy took a deep drag from her cigarette and exhaled a huge cloud of smoke and stared at me….”I never cleaned again.”

And sadly for Mr. Gaga and my kids- after Aunt Cathy told me that story I never cleaned again either. ( Thanks Aunt Cathy – when you explained to me how unimportant cleaning was – that was the best day of my life!!!)

Well – I mean basic cleaning if I can; and I clean my toilets daily because I have two boys that seem to squirt pee everywhere except inside the actual toilet.

So – essential cleaning – but never will I stay in the house on a nice day when I could bring Sam to the park or skip a playdate or a trip to the library.

Cleaning is really not my cup of tea. 

My brother (who happens to have a cleaning lady, and a relative who comes over and has been known to clean the inside of their refrigerator and do their laundry!!!!  and has one magical baby that doesn’t make a mess and is only in the house a few hours a day) – finds my lack of cleaning offensive.

A couple of weeks ago I asked him why he thought he was a better parent than I was.

“Well – I guess because I care more about living in a clean environment than you do…” he said.

“Shut up!! What’s dirty in my environment?” I yelled.

“Well your toilets for one….”

“I CLEAN MY TOILETS LIKE EVERYDAY!!!! You don’t understand my life.”

But it got me thinking….maybe he’s on to something….having other people clean his house and then taking the credit for it and judging other people’s dirty homes.

I have been working a lot lately – I am not really technically a “stay-at-home” mom all the time any more……

I pretty much went back to work …..and I FORGOT TO REHIRE THE CLEANING LADY!!!!!

O.M.G.

What an idiot I am –  I have to find a cleaning lady!! I can totally carve out some money out of my budget for this important service!!

It’s only fair to the kids and Mr. Gaga that they live in a clean home, and fair to me that I not spend every minute of my life scrubbing a toilet.

I was thinking about it on my way home from work yesterday. 

I thought – well I will definitely get a cleaning lady at least every two weeks.  That will only be about $150.00 a month, and well worth it. 

We have no big expenses coming up – Sam is almost done with preschool – HOLLA!!!!! and so it seems like it should be fine to spend money on this…….

But then again – I could hold off for a little while and if I save the $150.00 a month for three months that could go towards a dose of Botox which is badly needed or a pair of really nice shoes…..hhhmmmm…

I could feel my foot sliding into these already.....It's about time I treat myself - I deserve it!!

I was mulling this over as I pulled into the driveway……

I went around back to talk to Mr. Gaga about my great new plan – and to say hi to the kids who are usually playing on their swing set. 

This is the scene I was expecting to see:

The inside of my house may be a bit messy - but my kids and my grass and my sky are definitely this perfect!!!

 But instead I found this……..

I ran inside.

“Ummmm…..what is going on outside??” I demanded of Mr. Gaga.

“Oh – yeah – that…..Well it seems that the wood was rotted and the whole thing snapped while the kids were swinging. So I had to take the whole thing apart.” he calmly answered. “I guess we will have to get a new one.”

“A new one? A good swing set is like $3000!!! ” I whined.

“I know – it sucks.” he replied.

“But I want shoes!!!” I cried.

He rolled his eyes.  “I was just so happy that nobody was hurt, that could have been really bad – the whole upper beam just snapped.” he said shaking his head with worry.

“Yeah, yeah – that’s totally scary……I need new sunglasses too by the way….and shoes…….and a cleaning lady……” I whimpered and threw myself on the couch.

“What if God forbid someone else’s kids were here and they got hurt?” he asked.

“I don’t want someone else’s kids here – I want a cleaning lady, and shoes!!!”  he left the room disinterested in my antics.

I turned to the kids who were watching Spongebob.

“Children – are you upset about the swing set?”

“Yes – but Daddy said you would get us a new one,” said Michael not taking his eyes off of the screen.

“What if you could have a clean house but no swing set?” I asked nonchalantly, “Which would you pick?”

“Swings!” they both answered.

“UUGGGHH” I leaned back on the couch and stared at the ceiling…….and noticed the cobwebs in the corner of the room……

So when do I ever get to have a clean house or a beautiful shoe on my foot??

WHEN AUNT CATHY??? WHEN?????

I know you probably don’t feel bad for me because I don’t have a new $600 pair of Gucci sandals…..but for the love of God did you see that broken swing set????? Please click the banner below to make me feel better 😉 XO, LADY GOO GOO GAGA

Waiting for the other shoe to drop….


Wednesday morning I quickly open my eyeballs when I hear the sound of the phone ringing.  I look at the clock. It is 7 am.

A phone call at 7 am can never be good.

Unfortunately, a long time ago, I dropped one of my cordless phones down the toilet – and never replaced it.   Now, when I need to answer the phone downstairs either I have to run for my life or miss it.

I jumped out of bed and ran for my life.

It was my best friend’s mother – who has been quite the bearer of bad news lately.  My stomach turned as I reached for the phone.

“Hi, Lady – when are you working this week – I want to meet up with you….”

I breathed a sigh of relief.  A work-related question is manageable.  Not ideal at the crack of dawn – but ok. 

The kids came meandering into the kitchen (a full half-hour before their alarms were set to go off) and I started their breakfast while I made small-talk with BF’s mom.

Suddenly, the doorbell rang.

It was now 7:15.

WTF?

I hung up abruptly and started to go towards the door, with my kids on my heels.  They were yelling that they wanted to answer the door – while my mind raced through all the possible scenarios that could go down when I answered the door. 

I yelled “I will answer it!!” as I approached the door – and as a final act of desperation – my son grabbed the back of my tank-top to try to pull me back away from the doorknob.  The straps of my shirt went askew and my boobs started to pop out.  I grabbed my boobs and looked up at the semi-circle of glass at the top of the door to see …..my brother!!!

I couldn’t make this shit up if I tried. 

I just finished blogging about how this poor guy saw my boob last week !!

He was dropping something off before work.  It was now 7:20 am.

The day progressed.  I had plans to meet for a playdate at a park with a preschool friend of Sam’s, and then hit the grocery store and then be back to grab Michael off of the bus by 2:00.

It was a nice day – so park time went a little longer than planned and then I raced to the store, (which was Stew Leonard’s so it wasn’t very easy to do.)   I grabbed a piece of pizza for Sam to eat in the car on the way home and made it home with 20 minutes to spare. I shoved some cold cuts in my mouth and put the groceries away.

I was about to go pick up Michael from the bus and bring him directly to CCD when the phone rang.  It was the nurse calling to say that Michael had been in a scuffle during recess that caused him to hit his head on the ground and resulting in a huge egg on his temple.

Great.

As I spoke to her I opened my email quickly, I had 5 minutes until the bus would arrive. 

This is what I saw:

FROM: FIRST GRADE TEACHER (9:30 am)

RE: MICHAEL’S SHOES


Hi  Mrs. Gaga,

Michael’ s shoes are starting to wear down in the front and he said he’s tripping over it.  Do you have extra shoes or boots at home that you could bring for him?
I could also cut the piece of the shoe that is hanging off (but it is quite large and is the part that covers his toes).
I might just use some packaging tape for now..
Let me know what you think!
Thanks!
 
Needless to say this email was being read as Michael’s bus was turning the corner.   The email was sent in the morning and I had never checked my email! So now my son had to walk around with duct tape shoes all day!!  

Now because I haven't checked my email and spent my time picking out prepared foods at Stew Leonard's all day - My child has to walk around like a homeless person....Mr. Gaga is going to kill me.

 
I essentially hung up on the nurse and fainted from the shame of the situation. I ran out to the bus.   I could not imagine that I was so oblivious – such  a bad mother that I missed this.  That his shoes that I bought a mere 4 MONTHS ago from NORDSTROM were so destroyed that teachers send me special messages begging for replacement shoes!! 
 
I am not a complete derelict – it’s not like I got him crappy shoes from the 5 and dime!!   I mean I’m not trying to be cheap – but I would like to get a mere 6 months out of a pair of sneakers – so I really hadn’t paid much attention to his shoes. 
 
The irony was not lost on me that this was happening a week after I essentially abandoned my family for two weeks to work in Manhattan.  So maybe I am just not as on top of things as I should be……but still.  I think I would notice if my kid’s shoes were falling apart.
 
When Michael came off the bus I was shocked.
 
This is what his shoe looked like:
 
 

I mean I'm not saying I send my kids to school in Louboutins but this is ridiculous.....

 

The teacher had decided against the duct tape for some reason – so Michael just walked around with a huge airplane wing hanging off the side of this shoe.

I have never been so mortified.  His teacher must think I am insane, but I swear the shoes were normal when he left in the morning…..

I must master this whole working while simultaneously caring for others thing…..It’s really not as easy as it looks…..

First she made me wear broken shoes, then she stopped bathing me .....now she doesn't feed me. Things haven't been the same since she went to NY for work....

PLEASE CLICK THE BANNER BELOW TO VOTE FOR ME….WHAT?  I WENT BACK TO NORDSTROM AND GOT THE KID SOME NEW SHOES……JUST CLICK IT……XO, LADY GOO GOO GAGA

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