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Duplo Blocks & Leather Jackets

I’ve never considered myself to be an overly soft, ooey-gooey momma type. Taking a second to note: there’s NOTHING wrong with that kind of mothering if you’ve still set boundaries, etc. It’s just simply not my personal mothering style. Carry on!

I’ve always classified myself as a Momma Bear. Raising boys, I guess that comes with the package. I love my brood, but I keep tough love on tap around here. Funnily enough, I didn’t think I’d be Betty Badass as a mom growing up. My own mom is basically southern sweet tea without the lemon twist, personified. She has basically been in training all her life for grandmother-hood… and she’s got that role in check, y’all. My boys know they’re going to get a hug and a quarter from her the minute they sense her presence. It’s a trip, to be sure.

But I digress. In spite of my momma bear ways, I’ve still got a soft spot hidden amongst all the fluff, delirium, and innate survival skills. That soft spot doesn’t often rear its head, but LAWDY MERCY when it does. Kleenex, please and thank you.

Back in, oh… I dunno, September? We moved Gabe out of his “little kid” room he shared with his brother and into his own room. The move, itself, was a feat of comedic horror. It involved moving Mason (the youngest) out of that room, which involved moving clothes, toys, furniture… disassembling furniture… nearly taking out a window and my kneecap… you know. The usual. And then came the big dogs. I ordered a metal loft bed to help with space management. The room he’s in now isn’t very big, but he also wanted a desk so he could draw and do his homework away from the noise of the house. The loft bed has a built in desk, so I really thought I was on a roll with that purchase. I’ll take, “Things I’ve Never Been More Wrong About in My Life Before” for $1,000, Alex!

I’m not even going to talk about that life experience as I’m still having nightmares (insert eyeroll here), but rest assured, it was an EXPUREEUNCE. Needless to say, I got it up not long after I swore to burn the whole room to the ground, but I don’t suggest putting a metal loft bed together single-handedly unless you’re roughly the size of Hulk.

I also put together a couple of bookshelves and rearranged the entire room — all in one school day. Yeah, yeah… I’m a total badass.

“Why is this relevant to the story?”, you might ask. Patience, young Jedi.

During the entire disaster that basically proved Joanna Gaines I am NOT, I was a swearing, sweaty, nearly broken mess. I could not wait to be out of that room and to get my hands on a Twisted Tea. It wasn’t until I finished replacing Gabe’s things with Mason’s that reality started to sink in. Reality shook my by the shoulders, though, when I put Gabe’s old sock monkey on his desk. The monkey he’s had since he was about a year old.

From out of nowhere I saw that room in a totally different light. I went from angsty and irritated to somber and emotional in just moments. The difference in the two rooms shook me to my core. My oldest spent the last night in his room just half a day before. It took a room change and stopping long enough to see how his tastes and interests have changed. He was no longer the little boy who needed stuffed animals and a song to go to sleep. He didn’t have a need for train tables or coloring books. Nightlights had long since proved unnecessary. Yet, until those things were removed from his space, they still seemed relevant. Once upon a time, they were relevant. Once upon a time, he needed those things.

Now, going in to my youngest boys’ room, I see very clearly the difference in little boy and young man. And, I’m not at all embarrassed to admit, it scares me a bit. “They grow up so fast,” is a cliche most parents (myself included) don’t often have the patience to hear.

“Why can’t they grow up faster?!”, is something that I have, on occasion, been guilty of thinking when I’m feeling overwhelmed or flustered. But, oh my goodness, the years do soar on by without a moment’s hesitation. And, before you know it, you’re replacing Tonka trucks and Duplo blocks with cologne and leather jackets.

Tonight I’ll sing my song to my littlest boys. I’ll sing because they still need it — and so do I. And maybe I’ll sing just loud enough for my “too old for songs” boy to hear, too. Because maybe he still needs it — because so do I.

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Mom Genes.

I’m a product of the eighties and brought up in the nineties.

 

I’ve seen some pretty crazy things as far as fashion goes. Designs, cuts, and fabrics all over the spectrum. I wore l.e.i. jeans from Mervyn’s, jelly shoes, butterfly clips, and white eye shadow (shudder). I lived in my Doc Martens only to alternate in on occasion my black platform sandals. I begged my mom to buy me ponchos and Juice Bar body spray and loved perusing the walls of Claire’s & Icing.

 

In short: I was a very typical, 1990’s tween girl.

Fast forward a bit to the 2000’s. Gone were the days of baggy jeans (thanks, I’m sure, to Rachel Green) and in waltzed a more hip pair of bottoms: low cut jeans. Low-cut jeans weren’t a new thing — they were pretty popular in the late sixties and seventies. But for those of us not born in the Flower Power days, they were new and they were what everyone wanted. Everyone except me and anyone else born with mom hips — regardless of whether they had kids or not.

rach

 
For a while, low-cut jeans were all you could find unless you wanted tapered-leg, boob-holstering denim. Obviously, being a teen girl and not an eighty-year-old woman, I wanted nothing to do with tapered-leg anything. So I took my chances and wore low cut jeans — for better or for worse.
 
Low rider denim ain’t for everybody, y’all, and they certainly weren’t for me. I found myself even more awkward than usual in the butt-crack bearing britches and took to wearing excessively long tank tops under every shirt I owned. Tucking in? Think again. These were not jeans that took tucked in shirts into consideration. You either wielded that plumber’s crack/thong with pride or you blocked views and drafts with your neon pink, French tip manicured hand.
 

I am one of the former, for sure. You won’t catch this three-times a momma in low cut ANYTHING. Or, at least, not on purpose. I am an avid believer in high-waisted jeans and thick ponte leggings. I wear shirts so long that some might confuse them as short-ish dresses. If you catch me wearing a tee shirt, you’ll also note that I’m wearing a tunic style tank top underneath. I’ve got no shame in my mom fashion game, y’all. No. Shame. At. All.

History repeats itself to those of us who choose to hide those high school yearbooks from our kids. Pretty soon we’re going to be subject to hormone-raged tweens and teens leaving very little to the imagination where their backside is concerned. I’m not ready, guys. My kids aren’t ready. And, no, I’m not relying on the old stand-by, “Boys will be boys”. I hate that phrase as it puts forth the idea that little guys (and grown ass men) are only capable of Neanderthal-esque tendencies.

With that said, I’m doing my best to ensure that my boys are confident in their own masculinity but also hold to respectfulness and mindfulness of women and young ladies in general. Even at their young ages, we are doing our best to instill in them common courtesy and a “hands off at all times” policy. We’re not messing around and they know it.

Nevertheless, they are little boys which brings me to an entirely different issue: potty humor. Potty humor is very much a thing, which means that butt crack humor is very. much. a. thing. You boy moms know my grief, I’m sure. I don’t even try to hide it anymore. I feel I can confidently say that if my five and nine-year-old boys laugh when someone passes gas, they’re going to laugh at a random buttcrack in Target. I mean, really, Jiffy Lube mechanic guy, if you don’t want a five-year-old to laugh at your hairy buttcrack, keep it covered.

 
Thankfully, low-cut jeans took a back seat to mid-rise, boot cut jeans pretty quickly. I still catch myself guarding my backside with my hand on occasion, though, even though I’ve since moved on to high-rise skinnies. But(t), alas: low cut jeans are making a comeback. Former wearers of the pant can be found all over Facebook and Twitter in either utter disgust or in total excitement.
 
lego drop box
 
 
If it were up to me, low-cut jeans would stay forever locked on the sets of Friends and Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants, a distant, slightly embarrassing memory that we can regale to our kids. A scary campfire story-type thing, if you will. I guess, however, this is really all coming from someone who does not and will likely never fully understand “fashion”. Don’t get me wrong — I can dress myself. But my clothing style is definitely more classic-casual. I’ve only recently started stepping out of my comfort zone. But a huge factor for clothing for me is COMFORT. If I’m having to constantly pull down, pull up, push up, button up, or cover up, then it ain’t for me. Being a mom to three boys? Comfort and practicality are key.
 
I’m not talking sacrificing on-trend for practical, though; I’m not buying my wardrobe from a ’95 Sears catalog. In fact, I get most of my things from Target or Old Navy (because: budget). But I am talking decency and modesty. Because I’m a mom to all boys, I don’t want them to grow up thinking women have to be frumpy to be classy, but I equally don’t want them to grow up believing that women are only sexy or attractive if they’re baring all constantly. Obviously, they’re going to form their own opinions in their own time. However, I’m a firm believer that living by example is key. A frustrating process, but key, nonetheless.
 
Jumping off the soapbox, I am curious to see how long this on-again-off-again trend will fare this go around. Honestly, though — I think I’m even more curious to see how long the corduroy jumpers I saw at Target a few weeks ago will last. If anything should have stayed in the 90s (besides JNCOs and white eyeshadow), it was corduroy.
 
Anything making a comeback fashion-related that makes you wince? Comment below!