Category Archives: babies

Bad Parenting Day

Today was probably one of the worst parenting days I’ve had in a long time. My husband just accepted a new job last month and it required relocation so while we decide where we want to live for the next two years we are living predominantly in hotels.

We have four daughters ages 2, 4, 10 and 16 and right now we are staying in two attached double queen rooms.

Our girls are going into their eighth week of being quarantined and everyone is sick of streaming services, school work and being stuck inside. All of this coupled with the fact that their schools closed abruptly and their parents moved them a few weeks later is taking a toll on them.

Yesterday was a really good day. I remember sitting on one of the beds with my daughters as we all laughed and chatted thinking about how wonderful that day was. The two and four year old laid down during rest time, they didn’t scream the times I told them screen time was over and they ate the food that was presented to them. The ten and sixteen year old did all of their schoolwork and listened to me when I was teaching them without incidence.

I remember thinking that maybe we had finally settled into a groove.

I had confidently started congratulating myself for all the sleepless nights, the countless grocery trips, hours of food prep, homeschooling the older girls at the drop of a hat when the schools closed, giving our children consequences for their actions and standing firm with them, limiting screen time and all sorts of other things that I consider hard work.

Today, those thoughts were nothing but a distant and disposable memory as I counted to three for the thousandth time and chased my two year old around with underwear.

Neither of the youngest would keep their clothes on and they ran back and forth between the rooms getting into things and screaming. An hour into homeschooling I was ready to call it quits but I plowed through and only had to leave the room twice to get away from the complaining and crying over school work. The older two argued with everything I tried to teach them and then proceeded to either refuse to do their work or simply pretended to do it while doing other things.

Around 1:00 I stared in dismay at the clothing, snack wrappers and actual food from lunch strewn across the floor mere hours after housekeeping had visited us. I started to pick things up and remembered that I needed to start the slow cooker meal that I had planned for dinner or it wouldn’t get done in time. I dropped the pile of toys back onto the floor and moved towards the refrigerator to start dinner and immediately my four year old showed up wanting me to hold her.

Holding my daughter with one arm and pulling things out of the refrigerator to prepare dinner with the other I heard raised voices from the other room as the older two girls got into a fight over a white, fuzzy blanket. As I rushed towards the doorway to their room to break it up with the four year old on my hip I trip over the two year old who was looking for me to wash her hands.

I realized that the two year old was covered from head to toe in chocolate and silently screamed because it didn’t seem possible to me that the tiny, gluten free, toddler granola bar I had given her had enough mini chocolate chips to make the mess I saw then.

I put the four year old down and picked up the two year old to deposit her in the bathtub which caused the four year old to start screaming because I put her down. The two year old had also begun screaming because while she was down for a hand wash she hadn’t requested a deeper clean. Simultaneously, I heard screams coming from the girls’ room and registered that in my delay the ten and sixteen year old’s argument has escalated into a full on brawl.

Frantic, I picked up the crying four year old with my other arm and hurried into the room to break up the fight. In the midst of this the phone rang and it was the hotel asking if everything was okay and that they’d been getting some complaints.

The older two thought this would be a good time to share with me that Covid-19 and the resulting quarantine haven’t actually affected me and their dad because he has an essential job and all I’ve had to do extra is home school them. They went on to inform me that they and their age group/s are the ones who have been affected the most because they had to leave their social lives and friends.

I sat there in a stunned silence and wondered which of the things it was that I did wrong to raise children who would be so callous and uninterested in their parents’ feelings. I started to explain all the many ways my life has been changed and affected by social distancing and quarantine and stopped when I realized they weren’t listening.

Was it just yesterday that I was feeling a sense of camaraderie with them and that I was crowning myself parenting queen? How could yesterday be so good and today be so bad?

I started to remind myself that after every good day of parenting there are some bad ones waiting for us. I’ve been a parent for sixteen years and I know these things already but no amount of knowledge can make those feelings of being a failure go away.

Before I free fell into mom guilt, a panic attack or even a week of raw depression I had to remind myself that my children are probably proving to be more normal than anything by their recently shared perspective because the majority of children are self-centered. Children spill things and make messes, they yell and they deny good things like bubble baths for no logical reason.

There’s something about a bad day of parenting that can cause us to really come down on ourselves in an unhealthy way. It’s good to remind myself that the reason they are the way that they are is because they’re kids so that’s what they’re going to act like.

If I’m really being honest, the fact that I had one good parenting day this week is amazing and I can’t hold every other day to that standard.

Jordyn Armour is refreshing with her authenticity and honesty when it comes to parenting and writes about anything parenting related, using sarcasm and humor to tie everything together. She is a stay at home mom to four girls and runs survivingmommy.org , Instagram @surviving_mommy and Twitter @survivingmommy_

When Our Children Throw Fits

I rewarded my four year old for throwing a fit today, at least that’s what it would seem like. We were driving in the car ten minutes after she had woken up and her little sister was given the stuffed Unicorn I found in the backseat.

This really upset Penelope who had asked for this specific unicorn yesterday. However, I had no time to procure another stuffed animal at the moment and she would just have to deal. She began to scream after my explanation as to why she couldn’t have it.
“If you continue to scream you WILL go back to bed when we get back home,” I finally exclaimed, realizing that she may simply be too tired to stay up.

Penelope had been throwing a fit for five minutes at this point and in my experience the longer the fit goes on the more unreasonable the child becomes. To my utter surprise and complete joy her fit subsided in less than 30 second and all that was left was a scowl on her face.

“I would be scowling, too,” I thought.


You see, Penelope had a rough bedtime routine last night because it was the second night of us helping her to break the habit of magically requiring sustenance at the very mention of bedtime. Then, she woke up screaming at 5:30am because she had a nightmare about a giant spider coming after her to eat her and on top of that I woke her up an hour earlier than she’s used to. Lastly, this unicorn should have been given to her; after all, she requested it the day before and I was so busy that I forgot to get it out of the car for her.

To sum up: Penelope had been put to bed with hurt feelings over her new bedtime routine, been awakened by a terrifying nightmare, was forced out of bed early and she was then unjustly treated with the unicorn situation. Anyone would act unreasonable.

Five minutes later when we arrived home I looked at her angry little face and I said, “Penelope, you made such a good choice to obey Mommy and stop screaming even though you’re so tired and rightfully upset. Thank you! I’m going to give you a surprise now for your good choice!” You should have seen her face light up and she chose veggie straws for her surprise.

Often, I think we hold children to impossible standards. Just like us, children have bad moods and it’s our job to teach them how to express their emotions in a healthy and acceptable manner.

Jordyn Armouris refreshing with her authenticity and honesty when it comes to parenting and writes about anything parenting related, using sarcasm and humor to tie everything together. She is a stay at home mom to four girls and runs survivingmommy.org , Instagram @surviving_mommy and Twitter @survivingmommy_

New babies = What Sex Life?

Having a baby is the most miraculous thing that a couple can experience.

When you held that baby in your arms for the first time and they looked into your eyes you knew this was the best thing you and your partner had ever done.

The love that you felt for each other and this new life in that moment was greater than any love you’d ever felt.

Four months later when you’re surviving off of less sleep than you ever imagined possible, you can’t remember the last time you went on a date and money is tighter than it’s ever been it’s hard to remember how that moment felt.

New babies shake up your entire routine and require your constant care and attention. But if you don’t take care of yourselves and your partner in the process it’s going to be the biggest mistake you’ll ever make.

Even when the baby goes to sleep at a decent hour and sex is a possibility you realize that you’ve both been fighting so much lately that it’s not even something you want to do. Or maybe you’re just so exhausted you’d rather sleep than put energy into sex.

What do you do when the best thing that ever happened to both of you seems to be the very thing that is driving you both apart?

You have sex.

Don’t feel like it? Do it anyway. Sex is a need.

This is both the best and the worst season you will go through as a couple and if you’re not having sex you’re both going to become so irritable and frustrated that it’s going to continue to push you farther away from each other.

It’s easy to fall into the trap of thinking that the good days are gone but they don’t have to be gone forever. Reclaim the heart of your lover because that’s who they used to be and that’s who they can be again.

Even if it doesn’t come naturally at first, you’ll find that sex can start to mend that which seemed broken.

No matter how much you don’t like the other person for reasons that you just can’t explain you’ve got to do like Nike and JUST DO IT.

Whether it’s been four months or four years: Start now.

Get out the whipped cream.

Have sex in the shower.

Give each other massages.

Light a candle.

Do something new.

No matter how you’re feeling, jump back in there and start doing it as often as possible. It may seem awkward at first but if you push through that and keep at it, it will become natural again.

You have the power to make it better than it was before and this is the best gift you can give to yourselves and your child.

Jordyn Armouris refreshing with her authenticity and honesty when it comes to parenting and writes about anything parenting related, using sarcasm and humor to tie everything together. She is a stay at home mom to four girls and runs survivingmommy.org , Instagram @surviving_mommy and Twitter @survivingmommy_