Daphne TV

I keep meaning to tell you all about this.  Once a week I’m doing a “long form” video project.  It’s on The Pulse Network.  Basically it’s radio online.  I was approached by Kevin Straley who was running the Boston affliate when I produced Dr. Dean Edell.  Kevin then went on to run XM radio.  Now, he is helping to get the Pulse going.   He wanted to know if I would want to do an hour show. It’s a start up, you know that drill.  It’s based near Boston so my show is done via skype out of my little office off my dining room.  Big production!

But, I’m enjoying it as it is like radio, a medium I loved, miss and always planned to get back to.  Sometimes I have guests and sometimes it’s just me talking about the news of the day, fashion, showing Cool Mom vids, whatever.

Here is the link to last weeks show which was pretty good.  Or so said my most regular viewer.  That would be my mom ( refer to “you can’t trust your parents” vid) You can watch it live 10am pst every Tuesday morning.

Let me know what you think.  You don’t have to watch it in one mouthful.  A few min here and there.

You Can’t Trust Your Parents

Though it’s hard to choose, I am 90% sure that Annie Hall is my all time most favorite movie.  It worked on one level when I was kid seeing it for the first time. Then, as I got older and got all the adult jokes, it worked on another level.  I have seen it about 35 times (yes, I have seen Gone With the Wind more, but Annie Hall has bit more relevance and realism).

One of the many great lines is when Woody Allen’s character, Alvie, says to his friend played by Tony Roberts, “Everything our parents told us was good for us is bad: Sun, milk, college.”

This is another reminder that we can’t trust our parents, which means our kids can’t trust us.

Momversation: What’s in Your Family Emergency Kit?

I try to be an anti-alarmist.  I was afraid this topic might tilt toward the “let’s all be scared” variety when it was proposed on Momversation, but it’s a bit more nuts and bolts. Jessica (with her cute blow out) had some ideas I had never thought of. Rounding up our LA girls trio today is Heather.  So, expect earthquakes and crime to be top of our mind.

See how you rate on the preparedness scale.  Who do you grab?

Let’s see… where are the D batteries for that flashlight?

Kids on the Floor

Eating in restaurants with children is a subject that is near and dear to my heart; obviously because my husband (www.chefmarkpeel.com) is a chef and restaurant owner.  This means that my kids and step kids have spent, and will spend, a lot of time in restaurants.  I see it as a great Eloise-like upbringing, but I know my stepsons don’t always think so.  Often when the cupboards are bare at dinnertime, I have said to Oliver, “We can go to Campanile for dinner or I can heat up this bagel for you.”  Nine times out of 10 he would take the bagel. Restaurants aren’t a treat when you’ve been in them your whole life, I guess.  My little ones are happy to go with dad to work.  In fact, they are a little bent when we don’t take them.  “Mommy is meeting a friend for a cocktail” doesn’t seem to work so well.  I usually say something like, “It’s going to be so boring. We are going to talk and talk and I won’t let you run up the stairs (as they do when the restaurant is closed).”

If I am taking my kids out for a dinner I would rather give my husband’s place the business.  Also, we get a discount (not 100% as my husband says that wouldn’t be right. Of course not! Who said ‘comped’?  I didn’t!). Most of the staff knows my kids by name so if I have to go to the bathroom I don’t worry about Vivien sitting by herself as every server and hostess knows her.  If I have Rex with me (aka More of a Handful) then I can say, “Can you put me in the back where there are fewer or no diners?”

Which leads me to this vlog:  My other strategy for restaurant eating (see here for tips from my life pre-Rex) is to get a corner table. Recently, though, I have found other parents I dine with aren’t in total agreement with this policy.  It even greatly upsets some.  What do you think?


The combing the hair thing in the morning is so much drama.  I know how much it hurts.  When I was 8 my mom could only hold me down once a week and by that time I looked like Cousin It.  I have to make sure Vivien’s hair is sort of an order as she know has to wear it in pig tails ( or braids, but for some reason she hates braids) because there is a lice outbreak at her school.  Ha, good times. cheers

I spray the stuff on her head, use a wide tooth comb, go in small batches.  I sometimes worry I’m torturing her like that Toddlers and Tiara mom who waxes her kids eyebrows.  Everyday there are snarls.  Conditioning the hair the night before helps, but only a bit, and since she is getting over an ear infection I’ve let the hair washing go for a few days ( also supposedly lice loves clean hair)

Any suggestions or helpful hints for this issue are appreciated.

Should I just go for dreds?

TV is good

This falls under the heading of “times I know I’m not a great mother”.  Well, yes, that can be a big basket full of errors.  A veritable overflowing canvas bin of broken toys that you are not allowed to throw out.

But, dang, how did pioneer moms get through their duties before TV?  Oh, right, they use to beat them. Actually, probably because the kids had chores themselves.  Okay, but back to our spoiled, jaded 21st century life…

Holiday with Strangers

This isn’t as dated as it seems since I recently got some “New Years” cards.  They can be cute and charming, but after Jan 1, I’m over it.  The information in New Years cards doesn’t stay with me in the same way as the ones that arrived pre-Christmas and have fallen off the mantle 12 times.

My premise for this vlog doesn’t seem far fetched when you consider how popular reality shows are.

Happy New Year!

Daphne the explorer: Tree Down!

Oh, that agonizing decision…when do you take the tree down?  I meant to put this up a couple of weeks ago when I did it, but I accidently packed it in the garage with my ornaments and tinsel.  My alter ego the gal who watches too much kid TV explains it all.

I finally just took it down while Vivien was at school one day.  Yes, it did not go over well.  But, that sucker had to come down.

Bone head mom

I might as well have yelled “fire” in a crowded theater.  Here is the story…

Once a week I volunteer for Vivien’s class when they go to their school library.  By every week I mean every few weeks as we are at a public charter school that is underfunded and rents space, so we are often kicked out of the library if the landlords need it. It’s a great little library and our librarian is a dad who volunteers tons of time to sort, organize and label books, coordinate parental volunteers.  He is the kind of parent every school needs ( hundreds of).

For my daughter’s class another dad and I show up to read the class a story and help them pick a book to check out  for the week ( or two months depending upon the next time we get in the library).  Afterward we sort and re shelve books.  Rather I do, some parents don’t, I’m not naming names, but it hasn’t gone unnoticed. (arched eyebrows)

The other parent had read the book the last few weeks so I was eager to read this week.  Let’s face it, that’s the money job, right?

” I need a ringer” I said to Librarian dad.  He picked something about a dragon that was fun and I can’t remember the name because I got so in the zone while telling the story.  I had a little bit of opening night jitters, but I really sold it to the K-1 crowd.  I had them eating out of my hand!  Only a few inappropriate interruptions of non-sequiturs ( you know when a kid says something like, “my grandfather has an ax”.  That’s nice kid, I’m reading a story about a dog)

Well, flush with my bang up job of reading I moved on to helping them pick a book. I knew Vivien was proud of her mom and she was being such a good girl I helped her first.  Ha, whom I kidding, I always help her first.  When I was sorting before the class arrived I noticed two books with unicorns.  I filed it mentally, “must tell Vivien about unicorn books”.

Now, here comes the bone head mom move. I said ALOUD

“Vivien, there are two books about unicorns”

UNICORNS she and her 3 best girl friends yelled.  But, here was the problem.  I MENTALLY noticed the books, I didn’t PHYSICALLY put them away.  As I scanned the stacks I did need to also assist some other kids.

“Where are the fairy tales?”  one little girl asked.  Check, found that. Meanwhile, their teacher is starting to do the countdown.

“You all have 2 minutes to find your book and line up.”  I am finding NOTHING about unicorns.  Now, I have introduced the concept of scarcity to these little girls and Vivien and her best friend, who had walked in holding hands were now at war.  I had found a book about moons or bunnies or somethng and tried to sell it to Vivien in lieu of unicorns, she took the bait, but so did her BFF so there was a conflict about who would get it.  Another girl said they should do “eany-meany”, but they had a fight over that which caused BFF to go and hide under a table as Vivien shouted,

” I don’t want her to count on me.”

“Oh, Librarian dad”  I summoned.  “Where are the unicorn books?”

“Hmm, I don’t know.” It was hard to scan the books, repair a friendship over the din of “stupid, stupid” that was running through my head.

“Vivien’s mom” asked a little boy “where is a shark book?”  Scan for sharks and unicorns.

“Here it is”  Librarian dad found the first one.  Vivien tossed the other book aside and grabbed it.

“I want one too!”  yelled BFF.  Fortunately, the other two girls, who are about 6- 9 months older and possess a whole other level of maturity, had found books about butterflies and pirate girls, yes, I did sell them on them and it worked. Phew.

“Here is the other one”  my white knight said.

“Line up!”  The teacher commanded.   Just as I handed the boy a shark book.

“I got this one.” he said toting a book about turtles toward the door.

Vivien fell in line behind her BFF.  They were smiling.  I gave her a kiss and off they went to class.

As I sorted I said to library dad.

“Wow, what a blunder!  Why did I tell a group of 5 year old girls that there were unicorn books when I wasn’t totally sure where these books were?”  I knew the answer.  I wanted to be perfect mom.  The mom who volunteers, who cares about her kids school and also brings joy and happiness to her daughter.

“Yeah”,  Library dad said.  “That was pretty stupid.”

I know there is no name calling in school.  But, he was right.

Rex and his Car

Great part about the start of the year is there are so many new toys to play with.  To the kids their toys are just as, actually more, important as our big kid toys.  So would if they were marketed as such?  Or perhaps juxstapose a commercial for the desired block of plastic with the experience the parent has with it.  That is what I explore here.

Back in my day we had a metal car with pedals that was left out rusted and developed sharp edges that we cut ourselves on.  Oh, the good old days.