Saturday, February 18, 2012

Complete this Tweet - by Joy

My kid has taught me......

to appreciate sleep, whenever you can get it.

laugh at myself and others. A sense of humor is key.

more about trains than I ever thought I would know.

that Curious George is the boss!

forgive.....forgive......and forgive.

that life is an adventure.


that a kid can't get enough Chocolate Milk.

that bedtime should always begin with a book.

that you can't lock the bathroom door- EVER!

that you will need a vacation AFTER a vacation.

to care less about a messy house.

to appreciate the Blessing that is known as PBS.

potty training doesn't happen in a weekend.

consistency is key.

sometimes Birthday & Christmas gifts cost WAY to much money.

that no-one will ever love you like your child.

and unconditional love does exist..........

Joy Adamonis is a stay at home mom to an energetic 4 year old boy named Landon. When not cleaning,organizing, cooking, teaching manners & all other motherly duties, she enjoys scrapbooking, couponing, dinners out with friends, traveling and spending time with her husband & son.

Thursday, February 16, 2012

Birthday - small business style! - by Aimee

Since opening a small business I've learned just how much impact even one sale can have so I try to do my part and support other small businesses whenever I can.  I've shared with you in the past about some wonderful crafty moms that helped with my Christmas shopping and now I wanted to tell you how my parent's birthdays were made a little more special by adding some local charm.

Once a week I try to get out and do something special with my two boys.  It gives me a chance to really spend some quality time with them out of the house (AKA not doing laundry or dishes in between turns in a board game we're playing) and since I also try to multi-task, a few weeks ago we spent our afternoon together making their Nana a birthday present.  I've heard folks talk about Clayground in East Greenwich so I decided we should go check it out.  There was only one other family there when we arrived and the woman working there quickly got us set-up and explained how things worked.  The boys each picked out the piece they wanted to paint and the colors they wanted to use.  I then took a deep breath and sat with them and realized that when given the right atmosphere, my boys can actually work on projects peacefully and thoughtfully.  I had been worried that they would reenact 'bull in a china shop' but it was far from that - they were very careful and respectful and for once, the picture I had in my head of what the afternoon would be like, was actually what it was!  We then handed their pieces over to be glazed and fired and picked them up a week later.  Needless to say, their pieces came out beautiful and Nana was very impressed!

But what birthday isn't complete without a cake??!!  I usually bake and decorate cakes for family parties.  I'm not a fantastic baker and the decorations are usually good for a laugh or two but I enjoy it, my family looks forward to it, and it fits into our budget.  But time just wasn't on my side last weekend so I decided to pick something up and hopefully embellish it a little to at least give it a sense of 'home-made'.  And then I drove by Allie's Donuts and my decision was made - I would treat my family to a donut cake.  I have fond memories of Allie's donuts from when I was little and knew my parents would appreciate the walk down memory lane.  The price is affordable, they can do any design, write any message, and it is delicious!  As soon as I brought it out and placed it on the table, I knew by the looks on their faces that I had made the right decision!  And for anyone who hasn't tried Allie's yet, it's only minutes from KT and well worth the trip!
And yes, that is one giant donut!  And no, you can't have just one bite.   And yes, you will get $1 off admission if you bring me a donut!

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Power to the Mom - by Lauren

A friend of mine posted this as her Facebook status (from Athleta) and I thought it was really inspiring.

Get up.




Work it out.

Stretch it out.

Get out there.

Get them out there.

Run the house.

Run the company.

Run the dishwasher.

Protect yours.

Include others.

Amaze the world.

And look amazing.

It's life.

A crazy happy life.

We can't wait to get up

And do it all again.

Power to the She.

 -Athleta magazine

It inspired me to write my version:

Get up at the crack of dawn.

Go drink massive amounts of coffee.

Run after a 2 year old to get him dressed.

Breathe before you lose your mind trying to leave the house in a reasonable amount of time.

Work on potty training.

Stretch the hamstring you pulled chasing said 2 year old.

Get yourself somewhat acceptable looking to leave the house.

Get him out of the house without a fight.

Run all your errands.

Run after 2 year old loose in Target.

Run the dishwasher and then realize it was empty.

Protect your couch from jelly hands.

Include others in your daily chaos by posting on Facebook .

Amaze the world with the amount of wine you can drink.

And look like a nominee for What Not to Wear.

It's life.

A crazy happy life.

We can't wait to sleep

And do it all again.

Power to the Mom.

Lauren Jordan is a part-time stay at home mom.  She has been married for 7 years and is the mom of a very energetic, hilarious 2 year boy!  She hopes to some day get a full night of sleep.

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Sorry Honey, Mommy’s Neurotic - by Rhiana

I come by my anxiety honestly.  I was told a story about my great grandmother; On a return trip from Florida via train she took the keys to her house out in Washington DC and held them in her hand for the rest of the trip just so she would be ready when she got to her house.  She lived in Rhode Island.  We joke that my grandmother was “born nervous and then anxiety set in“.  And my mother… well let’s just say the apple didn’t fall far from the tree.  Next in the lineage is me.  I admit I am completely neurotic. Completely. 

When I think about  McDonald’s play place all I see is a giant petri dish of germs.  In fact I nick-named it the 'meningitis factory'.  This past week my friend asked me to go bowling.  I just laughed.  I mean to stick my feet in those shoes… there just isn’t enough hand sanitizer in the universe to get me through an afternoon of bowling.  So this kind of neurotic behavior affects my son because my perceived “grossness” of these places negated opportunities for fun play time.

Anxiety doesn’t have a rhyme or a reason, it pops up in all sorts of fun random places.  Participation in a play date with lots of people in a large public place like the Zoo never happens.  I get overwhelmed in large crowds.  I get overwhelmed when there are lots of people in a small space.  I get anxious  when I am in a room full of people I don’t know well.  And I know that my anxieties affect my child.  I noticed all these things happen to my little man as well.  It crushes me that I have passed this on to him.  I hoped since the anxiety level decreased with every generation and he would be completely normal.  This is one of those times where I wish he wasn’t so much like me. 

The good news is after almost six months in pre-school he is really well adjusted.  He sought out friends and created friendships.  His confidence increased ten fold.  His “acclimation” time decreased.  All very, very good signs that my son’s grandchildren will not hear crazy stories about their neurotic grandfather.  Their great-grandmother on the other hand, well…that is a whole different story.


Rhiana Menning is a wife, domestic goddess, and mother of one four year old boy affectionately known as Captain Chaos. 

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

1 Year Old!

Believe it or not, Kite Tails is 1 year old today!  I know I'm making a big deal about this but in the world of small business, 1 year is huge!  It's hard to find very accurate numbers but 30-50% of small businesses fail in their first year and up to 95% don't make it to five years!  Those odds are not good!  And as you've all heard, the economy isn't great right now!  But the funny thing is that the weather, more than the economy, has made this first year challenging!  For a business that thrives on cold, rain, wind, snow and high humidity, the beautiful 4 seasons we've had this year have not been in my favor!

But despite all of that, it's been one heck of a year!  Here is KT by the numbers:
839 fans on Facebook
932 people receive our newsletter
53 birthday parties have been celebrated here
27 families have purchased 3, 6 or 12 month play passes
and most impressive - over 2000 kids have come to play here!

But the 'coolest' thing this year has been all of your milestones!  It's been great to watch your little ones start to crawl and walk, speak their first word and put together sentences.  From baby bumps to becoming a 'mom of 2' (or 3 or 4!), it's been so fun to watch it all.  Some kids have walked in the door too shy to even look at me and now they come running in, throw their coat and shoes down, get to playing, and come right up to the counter when it's snack time!  We've had little ones who have taken their first parent/child class with us - the first class they cried to get out of the room and now they're disappointed when we have to take a week off!  It has all been wonderful to watch and I'm so thankful you're willing to share these special times with Kite Tails!

I'll be the first to admit that we still have a lot to learn and are always looking for better ways to serve the KT community.  I think my little Matthew, who is 4 years old, said it best when I told him Kite Tails was one.  He said:  "Now Kite Tails can learn to walk!"  How true it is!  We're standing up but will probably wobble and fall down a few times but will keep trying again and moving forward!


Monday, February 6, 2012

Good Enough!

When Mike and I first moved in together, I quickly realized that handy was not one of his many attributes. Pictures are always hung crooked, painting is done by me, and when we went house hunting Mike wanted to buy a house that "we need to do nothing to." I want to rip up the ugly 1980s blue carpet and put down floors and he looks at me like I am crazy. Sink drains stay clogged for weeks and our fire alarm still randomly goes off because of some faulty wire issue (It yells “Fire! Fire!” such a great thing for a 2 year old to repeat while out in public). Putting together furniture or toys requires taking days off and many instructions (and a lot of begging) and even then pieces are often backwards or parts leftover.  EJ got a train table for Christmas and Mike actually took a vacation day from work to put it together in anticipation that all would not go smoothly.

This has always been slightly amusing to me. Being handy is not something Mike has time for or even enjoys. So it is even more amusing now that our 2.5 year olds most prized possession is his toy hammer and his two most favorite people are Bob the Builder and Handy Manny. I have written about his hammer, “Pat”, before but it is truly his most favorite item.  He sleeps, eats, drives in the car, goes potty and plays with Pat.  If Pat is missing it is like crisis mode in our house and everything stops until Pat is located.

EJ asks Mike all the time to show him his real hammer and tool box.  His favorite thing to do with Mike is hammer a nail in the wall. EJ loves tools, tool boxes, tool belts and "fixing things". He always wants Mike to show him how or "fix things” with him. If Mike hangs a picture he stands right under him, captivated.  If Mike changes a light bulb or checks the smoke detector for the fiftieth time, EJ is right there asking to help.

It is only a matter of time before our toddler will become handier. I will have to start asking EJ to hang pictures, screw in nails and assemble things for me. He will surpass his teacher very shortly. And honestly, I don’t think Mike cares.  I think it will be a great relief for him to have someone in the house that actually enjoys doing these things and does them correctly. Couple more years and maybe I will actually get my hard wood floors.

This week, Mike told me his new slogan for his work around the house is “Good enough!” He hung our flat screen to the wall and both the TV and the cord covers are slightly crooked but he said we should just be grateful he even figured it out.  EJ’s two heroes have mottos like, “Can we fix it? Yes we can!” and “You break it we fix it!”  Unfortunately, his dad’s motto is slightly less convincing.  


Lauren Jordan is a part-time stay at home mom.  She has been married for 7 years and is the mom of a very energetic, hilarious 2 year boy!  She hopes to some day get a full night of sleep.

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

You will succumb!

Even if you promise yourself you won't do it, you will. At some point in your child's early school years, you will succumb. Perhaps by acknowledging this, it will make the pill less bitter to swallow. You WILL compare your precious offspring to other children his age and desperately want to know and be reassured as to where he ranks. The one that will get you, I'm sure, is sight words...or reading level...Kindergarten buzz words! Each year, guidelines and recommendations seem to become more stringent. Kindergarten children are now expected to recognize and read 90 words before they enter first grade. 90 words! Meanwhile, some children begin Kindergarten at just barely 5 years old, and some that have been cut off by admission date rules are nearly six. If you think that eleven or so months make no difference, compare your child's work in September to your child's work in June ( a nine month span!) Even if you do not have a school age child right now, reading this has made you worry a bit, right? Well, I just want to say to you, RELAX! I am presently on the fourth round of this Kindergarten mania, and here is the truth: Your child will read. Not one moment before he is ready, not any sooner if you demand/desire/beg/plead! 

My first child entered K at 4 yrs, 9 mos. (grandfathered in to the current age rules) She was the youngest in her class. Listening/ helping her try to read or even sound out words in FIRST grade was so painful. I have always been an avid reader and couldn't comprehend how my sweet daughter, who was so much like me in every other way, could not grasp the concept of reading. Then one day, in second grade, it just clicked for her. A light bulb went on! She got it! She understood..and she loved reading! By third grade, she was reading Harry Potter books, soaring through her 30 book challenge at school, and, more importantly, reading because she loved it!

My next child had earlier success, because he can memorize anything. Not necessarily comprehend what he is memorizing, but spitting it back mechanically was nearly effortless. Ok, we got this...we learned...we are super parents! Wrong! This kid is in 6th grade now. Hates to read. Sees it as a punishment. This is the kid we backed off on!

Third go-round. He was slow to catch on. In fact, number 4, a school year behind him, was hot on his tail. She begged for "word cards" like his, and quickly caught on. Earlier this week, number 3 grabs a book that I think is beyond his level and asks if he can read it to me. I am amazed that he reads it without faltering. Meanwhile, parent conference this weekend shows that number 4 is close to a full grade level ahead.

Moral of this story...patience, reassurance, and positive reinforcement are your best weapons in this battle. Trust in God...the rest will come!

Jennifer Oliver Nunes is a mother to five wonderful, crazy children and is happily married to an equally wonderful, crazy man. She spends her time trying to balance her family's hectic schedules and activities and praying for her checkbook!