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Showing posts from June, 2013

Top 15 Tips My Parents Taught Me

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Family The Today Show did a series called, “Top Tips My Parents Taught Me”. Apparently Savannah Guthrie ’s mother taught her how to make a bed with crisp hospital corners. I’m kind of jealous. The older I get the more I appreciate a well-made bed. Unfortunately, Andre could care less about that and making the bed is a constant point of conflict for us. If we apply the last person up makes the bed rule, he’d be making it 99% of the time since I have become an early riser . And he has protested... Anyway, that’s a topic for another post. Instead in this post I am going to list, in no particular order, tips that my parents have taught me about life.

A Peek Into the Life of a Working Mom: Urban Life

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" Out of the mouths of babes... " Matthew 21:16   Living in the city with a toddler means that we spend a lot of time at playgrounds . Indeed, the parks in Pittsburgh are some of the cities richest treasures. My daughter loves the Pittsburgh city playgrounds.   My daughter enjoys the parks so much that   last week when I took too long to get ready she looked at me and said, “Mommy, this is ridiculous!” Where did she learn to say “ridiculous” at 2.5? Apparently, her father.   Later that week, I overheard him tell her “You’re a big girl, this is getting ridiculous!” after she pooped in her pants for the second time in as many days .   Children absorb what we say and learn lessons about how to conduct themselves based on what we teach them. While ridiculous might not be the most appropriate word choice for a toddler, I had to respect how she used it in appropriate context and had just the right inflection to communicate her point. And since instead of going to

A Peek Into the Life of a Mommy Blogger: Seeking More "Likes" on Facebook Page

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For bloggers, social media influence is essential. We live to have our posts read. Indeed, I hope that my posts help to inspire other working moms and let them know that I am with them in the struggle.   For that reason, I have been steadily trying to increase my number of Facebook followers. I am close to passing a milestone, "600".  I'd be honored if you'd help me out. If you use Facebook, please stop by my page and click "like". I'll be eternally grateful! Don't be shy. Feel freel to share this post with your friends! :-) My facebook page is located at: http://www.facebook.com/chatonsworldpage         Chaton Turner shared a Tweet with you:             Chaton Turner @Chatonsworld I only need 11 more "likes" to have 600 "likes" on my blog Facebook page. Perhaps today wil

A Peek Into the Life of a Working Mom: Kenny Chesney Comes to Pittsburgh

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I have been pretty faithful to my Saturday morning runs for the past few months and it has felt good. There is something really empowering about being up before most people, including my family, and touring the city by foot. Sometimes, I run with a group, but most often I have been running alone.   As a working mom, I value my solitude and I enjoy the endorphins that come with running. The " runner's high " is real!   This morning, the sun was shining, the humidity was low and it was getting hot. However, even though I enjoy it, I didn't really want to run this morning. My bed was warm, Andre was in it, and sleep is very seductive.   Still, I got up, laced up my sneakers and I powered through it. And eventually it started to feel really good. As I ran, I noticed that there were a lot more people up and about. There were pick up trucks and cowboy hats everywhere. There were little girls in cowboy boots . There was music playing in the air. It was as if

Working Mom Tip: Great Books for Kids

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Every working mom wants to raise strong, respectful, honorable kids of good character. We also want to raise kids who will always willingly and happily do their homework and their chores.  The homework and chores may be tough, but there is help for you to raise kids with good character.   We love reading to our daughter and have since she was born. Having her sit on my lap as I rock her in the chair and read to her are one of my favorite things to do. We also like whenever the books we read reinforce the lessons we try to teach her.

A Peek Into the Life of a Working Mom: Working Mom Guilt

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Toddler when working mom leaves the house “It plagues me. I feel intensely guilty for working … You have to be able to provide for your kids. But I feel like it’s a weird modern phenomenon that you always feel guilty for it.” -- Melissa McCarthy, actress, mom to two girls under 6 Recently, a friend confessed that she has been feeling really guilty about leaving her toddler when she goes to work. He has been crying and saying, "mommy don't leave me!" Nothing tugs at the heart of a working mom like hearing her child plead for her to stay. As the mom of a toddler I have learned that they can be unpredictable. You can be on a roll and then out of nowhere she'll be distraught when I leave for work.  Once I came home for work because I forgot something. When I left to return to work my daughter cried harder than I had ever heard. I felt terribly and wondered whether I was doing the right thing.

A Working Mom Reflects on Father's Day: Happy Fathers Day!

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As a working mom, I often write about how I am overworked at work and at home and don't get all of the help that I would like.  While those things are true, this Fathers' Day I have to acknowledge that Andre is an amazing father and one of the great joys of my life has been watching Andre father our daughter... He was there when she was born doing everything it took to bring her into the world. From that moment on, he has been engaged and protective of her. He mastered swaddling because he understood that sleep was essential for baby and mommy. He quickly learned how to change diapers, feed her and clothe her. He has mastered the art of pony tails. A Devoted Father He has even changed her diaper in public restrooms all over the country. One of the funniest times involved the three of us visiting my alma mater, The University of Virginia . The toddler needed a diaper change. I was willing to wait until we returned to the hotel, but Andre thought the poopy diaper n

Working Mom News: 95% of People Don't Wash Their Hands

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  “The expression of wonder stands for all that cannot be understood, that can scarcely be believed.” --Stephen Greenblatt.   After learning that  95% of Americans do not wash their hands properly after using the bathroom this morning, while watching the Today Show , I now understand the above quote.... As a protective mother, a germaphobe and someone who works in healthcare, I live in a world where I am a bit obsessive about hand washing.  While I recognize that not everyone is as obsessive as I am, like Andre for example, I believe that most people care about cleanliness and work to ensure that they are spared of spreading the worse kind of germs--the feces kind.   Potty Training Leads You to Dirty Places    Indeed, a few weeks ago my daughter and I were at the park in the bathroom.  Potty training definitely tests my limits when it comes to dealing with germs. I generally avoid public bathrooms, especially those in parks, grocery stores and gas stations unless

Working Mom Tip: Free Family Fun

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Pittsburgh is a great place to raise children. There are numerous parks, festivals and program, especially in the summertime. I just learned that there is a program called "KidsPlay" at  Market Square this summer on Tuesdays from 10:00AM-11:30AM. KidsPlay will feature fun  educational programs and activities complete with crafts and special guests. The activities are designed to enrich and entertain the little ones and are geared toward pre-school aged children and welcome families, caregivers , schools, day cares and camps. One week, children can plant their own tree. The next they can see how cartoons come to life and even touch a real fire truck.    KidsPlay at Market Square: Does anything beat free family fun? Working moms, send your child down to market square with their caregiver, take a half day and enjoy the festivities yourself, or tell your day care center to bring the kids down. It's free. It's fun. And it's totally Pittsburgh!   Th

Working Mom Tip: Save at The Pittsburgh Children's Museum!!! (#PGHKIDS)

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We have a membership to the Children's Museum and it more than pays for itself. Indeed, it is among the best money that I have ever spent.  In exchange for the cost of the membership my daughter has made countless memories and experienced a million smiles!   The Magic of the Children's Museum

A Peek into the Life of a Mommy Blogger: The SmarteRita "Get Waisted Challenge"

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Summer is a time for cookouts, cocktails and good times. However, those good times can wreak havoc on your bikini body. So, a girl has got to be careful about how she decides to celebrate the sunshine.  I try to use this blog to educate working moms about products that can make their lives easier. While I am not advocating drinking alcohol , most of the working moms I know enjoy a good cocktail. And for that reason, and because I enjoy a good, calorie friendly, cocktail myself, I decided to accept the SmarteRita "Get Waisted Challenge".   The SmarteRita "Get Waisted" Challenge

A Peek Into the Life of a Working Mom: Why I Love Saturday Morning

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True confessions, I have not been faithful to getting up at 5:30AM. Doing that was a really tough grind, especially since I usually go to bed at 11 or 12. Still, I think that my thoughts about rising early have influenced my sleeping patterns. I usually get up at 6:30AM without prompting, which is much better than I used to do before I attended Spark and Hustle last year and met all of those women who get up at 4:30 AM.   I admire those women. I am in awe of those women. And I am more than a little intimidated by those women...   My early rising carries over to the weekend. And has led to Saturday mornings being my favorite time of the week.  I prepared a video to tell you all about it. Check it out! (By the way, don't judge my appearance too harshly. I made the video right after a run!)

Bet on Your Baby Giveaway! (#giveaway)

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“Bet on Your Baby” is a new show that ABC , in partnership with Luvs, is airing on Saturdays 8/7c! Here’s the premise, every parent thinks they know their baby well, but are they willing to bet on it?  Bet on Your Baby is a new show where parents play fun games with their toddlers, and try to “bet” on what baby will do next! If they guess correctly, the family wins $5,000 in college tuition money, and the chance to play for $50,000! I caught the show a few weeks ago and concluded that it’s pure genius. Who doesn’t like cute kids doing things that frustrate their parents?!   GET FREE DIAPERS

Working Mom Tip: Family Fun (The Triple B Farms Strawberry Festival)

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Spring in Western Pennsylvania means sunshine, nice weather and festivals!  As a working mom, I love festivals because they are organized activities that are instant family fun ! Below is information about a Strawberry Festival  at Triple B Farms.  There's nothing like outdoor fun to make you appreciate Spring. We'll be attending next weekend. If you see me, please say 'hello'!   The Triple B Farms Strawberry Festival The Strawberries are Ready! Buy Fresh, Buy Local , Eat Healthy! Join Triple B Farms Strawberry Festival for the annual Strawberry Festival - The weekend of June 8/9 and June 15/16 Family Activities include:

Working Mom Musings: My Concern About Working Moms Being the Primary Breadwinner

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As mentioned in a few other posts, the Pew Research Trust has reported that the percentage of women who are primary breadwinners is steadily growing. I for one am concerned about those moms.   Anti-discrimination laws changed the workplace, but not the home Working women have made more progress in the workplace because the anti-discrimination laws changed employment practices and policies that kept women out the workforce and largely underemployed.   While we have more work to do, things have gotten considerably better. Progress at home and in our private lives is a different story. I am one of those women who is the primary breadwinner.   What I have learned is that while we have taken on more responsibilities at work the paradigm at home has not changed. So long as both parents work outside of the home who earns more money doesn't tend to influence who is in charge of the home. The assumption is that working mothers manage our careers, primarily care for our child

A Peek Into the Life of a Working Mom: My Appearance on PCNC Night Talk

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As I mentioned in a previous post, tonight, I appeared on Night Talk, a talk show on the Pittsburgh Cable Network Channel. I was interviewed by Ellis Cannon .  We discussed the  report the Pew Research Trust recently published stating that working moms are the primary breadwinners in 40% of American households.  We had a robust conversation. Ellis disclosed that he is the kind of husband who cleans the house and does laundry and I disclosed that I am failing at potty training . All in all we had a grand time. I really hope to do it all again sometime soon. Here's hoping!   Me at WPXI Related articles Upcoming Television Appearance: What Does it Mean Now That 40% of Moms are the Primary Breadwinner in Their Household? (chatonsworld.blogspot.com) Working Mom Musings: Is the American Family in Jeopardy Because Women Work??? (chatonsworld.blogspot.com) What We Don't Talk About When We Talk About "Breadwinner Moms" (blogher.com) Net Worth TV Announc

Working Mom Musings: Is the American Family in Jeopardy Because Women Work???

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Some believe that since 40% of working moms are the primary breadwinner the American family is in jeopardy.  I disagree. The Results from the Pew Report Were Not Earth Shattering It's somewhat surprising that the Pew Research report has generated so much comment.   First, statistics can be spun to tell almost any story that you want. As someone once said, “there are three types of lies—lies, damned lies and statistics”.   Second, the statistics reported did not indicate that “women have taken over” and definitely did not indicate, “the end of men”. From a statistical perspective, 40% isn't a majority. So it’s not like the majority of homes have women who out earn their partners. Indeed, they included single parent households in the statistic, which skews the data somewhat.   In some ways, this report is the equivalent of Chicken Little running around and saying that the sky is falling. So why the buzz??? Still, it is news. And here is why. Even if you accoun

Upcoming Television Appearance: What Does it Mean Now That 40% of Moms are the Primary Breadwinner in Their Household?

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As I mentioned in a prior post , recently, the Pew Research Trust recently published a report stating that working moms are the primary breadwinners in 40% of American households. This report brings to light some interesting issues. What does this say about pay equity and the relevance of the ongoing conversation about women in the workplace?   What does it mean for the future of the American family? Also, how, how, how are these women managing to do it all?! Check out Night Talk on Thursday! Tune in to NIGHTTALK on Pittsburgh Cable News Channel (PCNC) on Thursday to hear me discuss these issues with Ellis Cannon . NIGHTTALK is live weeknights at 8 p.m. on PCNC, the cable arm of Pittsburgh ’s NBC affiliate, WPXI-TV .  FIOS:                      Pittsburgh Cable News Channel—Channel   9 Comcast:              Pittsburgh Cable News Channel—Channel   35 Related articles Study Finds Moms Primary Breadwinners in Four of Ten Households With Children (shoppingblog.com)

A Peek Into the Life of a Working Mom: My Weekend

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With Doc McStuffins  "If life happens when you're busy making other plans, for working moms magic happens on the weekends." Like all working moms I cherish my weekends . Not to sound trite but, raising my daughter has been the greatest joy of my life. And this weekend was full of lots of toddler and mommy memories? I also managed to have some time of my own... Going to happy hour on Friday made me feel like a kid again... I remember my first job out of college. I was barely twenty-one. I was a sales representative for a candy company. Even though I had a company car and an expense account , attending happy hour was what made me feel most like a real working woman. As a working mom I don't get to attend happy hour very often. However, this past Friday night Savoy Restaurant was hosting a free  happy hour for Curran Automotive. Also, my mother was in town and she and my brother and lots of my friends were at Savoy too. So, I put on my white jean

Museums Offer Free Admission for Military Families

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Museums Offer Free Admission to Military Families through Blue Star Museums Program   May 24–September 2, 2013     Summer Hours Announced   Pittsburgh , Pennsylvania …Admission to Carnegie Museums of Art and Natural History will be free for all active duty military personnel and their families from Friday, May 24 , through Monday, September 2, 2013 as part of the Blue Star Museums Program. Carnegie Museums of Pittsburgh Members always visit free. Regular parking rates apply. Carnegie Museums of Art and Natural History offer 50% off admission for active military personnel year-round for up to four people per military ID. Admission to fee-based Carnegie Museum of Art and Carnegie Museum of Natural History programs, such as Culture Club and pre-registered events are not included.   Carnegie Museums of Art and Natural History are two of the more than 1,800 museums participating in the Blue Star Museums program, a project of the National Endowment for the