Wednesday, April 30, 2014

Sunscreen, WTF?!

This question comes via Tweet from :
@DearAnnAbler my kid & I love 2 be outside. Hubby says she’s getting too #tan - ALWAYS wear #sunscreen. Is this a "real" problem? Who's right?
- Sarcastic Mommy 

Dear Sarcastic,

Who’s right? Well, let’s see…is George Hamilton still alive and well? Yes. In fact, “George Hamilton tan” is the second option in Google’s drop down search menu, so I can only assume his tan is the reason for his autofill fame. Apparently, what doesn’t burn your face right off makes you stronger. And more marketable. Orange-Americans have really made some progress.
Some “experts” suggest keeping kids indoors between 10 am and 2 pm, when the sun is at its brightest. These are probably the same pricks telling you to limit your kids’ screen time to ZERO, while you have the little ones all caged up. Well, pick an organ, people! You can have our brains or our skin, but not both! Clearly, these people are terrible bores, and represent the interests of the wooden block and Lego lobby. 

If I seem a little upset, it may be due to the fact that I actually attempted to do some research on sunscreen for this post, and the results are the following: reapply often AND it might kill you. Have a super Summer! Because the jury is out, I’ve decided to focus on what’s most important, and that is how to get you to be right, and win this argument with your husband.  So, if you are looking for a big fat “I told you so” moment, just show him this article entitled Your Sunscreen Might Be Poisoning You. Argument over. Sarcastic Mommy #FTW. Plus it's from a TV doctor so it's all #truefacts.

So slather on that sunscreen if that works for you, or clothe your kid from head to toe, or let the sunshine in, or fasten a fashionable umbrella to your child’s head, because nothing says, “I make great decisions” like this look here:

Now please don’t make me think this hard again, and have a super Summer!

~ Your Ann Abler

Monday, April 28, 2014

Driving Miss Crazy

Dear Ann Abler,

I watched my wife make a 17-point turn and kept my mouth completely shut. The. Whole. Time. To recap: 17-point turn. Mouth shut. Whole time. I’d like to convey to her that she should be really proud of me for not making any comments, especially seeing as how her driving skills just about caused all the synapses in my brain to spontaneously combust and send me to an early grave. I think I’ll remind her of my impressive restraint later this evening to see if it puts her in ‘the mood’.

It’s a good idea, right?

Mr. Mouth Shut

Dear Mr. Mouth,


You’ll thank me later for the lack of injury to your groin area.


Saturday, April 26, 2014

Mommy blogger stat lover

Dear Ann Abler,

Like many moms out there I have a blog. Unfortunately, I check stats on blogspot more than I put out new posts. It’s just so satisfying to see a new country on the world map turn that pretty shade of tea green. It’s a calming color and also makes me feel like an important world leader. When I’m not checking stats, I go on Twitter and tweet links to the three posts I’ve written so far. I’m thinking of having my 4 year old write my next post. Am I on the right track?

Derailed mommyblogger

Dear Derailed,

While it may feel muy bien when you see someone in Bolivia reading your blog, it’s no bueno to get caught in a cycle that silences your creative voice. You might want to shove me in the shallow water before I get too deep* (*Shout out to Edie Brickel). 

Now that I think about it, you might be on to something…maybe you’ve discovered that your true passion is watching countries light up on a map like they are game show contestants buzzing in. Perhaps you picture world leaders hovering their hands over the buzzer saying, “no whammies, no whammies, stop”. Wasn’t Press Your Luck a great gameshow? But I digress. 

Back to expert advice giving, you should make the map your end goal, and not rest until each country is colored with tea green. Why not start tweeting the link to your blog and add a hashtag for every nation? Something like, “Hey there #India, #checkitout”. Or “Gente of #Guatemala, #mommyproblems, riiiight? <linktoyourblog> ”. Show them you are totally down with their country by showing your cultural fluency. “Bon jour people of #France: #scarves #butter #escargo #voila #French #fries <linktoyourblog> #oolala

Now, say two hail mommies, and refresh your page. Most importantly be sure to give a #shoutout to @dearannabler.

Friday, April 25, 2014

Fancy Feet

Dear Ann,
A friend of mine told me her husband rubs her feet and recites her poetry each night while she’s nursing the baby to sleep. How can I convince my husband to do the same?
-Jealous in Jersey

Dear Jealous,

First, how long has your friend lived in this commune somewhere outside of Portland? Or is it the Land of Make Believe? Do they also sleep atop musical rainbows that stream Cat Stevens and Van Morrison?

Second, back here on planet earth, focus on the things your husband does do, like make the baby laugh, sometimes scoop the kitty litter, and sometimes put the seat back down. Tell your friend you hate her and her perfectly massaged feet and doting husband.  If you can figure out how to get your husband to do this on the daily, well.....this advicetainment column is yours. I retire.

Say 1 hail mommy and get a pedicure sometime this year. 

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Tortured Artist

Dear Ann,
My toddler has started painting and I’m convinced she’s an artistic genius. Ok, I know she’s probably just average, but even as I write this, a little voice in my head says, NO SHE’S REALLY TALENTED. I have this aching desire to share her work on Facebook. Stop me, please. I’d like to keep some friends that don’t have kids.

-Bragging Rights for Artistic Genius

Dear BRAG,

Your dear Ann Abler respects your restraint, but I can also show you how to override it. Now, I will agree with you that your child is without a doubt a genius—as is true of all children of my must-be-genius readers. I understand your desire to share her flair. Why should your childless friends get to share snapshots of countless cocktails and wide-eyed cats without a smidge of remorse? Get over the momguilt, and get in on the over-sharing action as well! 

I have a solution to satisfy your desire to upload these masterpieces while still maintaining - if only on social media - a shred of your pre-baby intrigue. Just say YOU did them. How fabulous! While your perfect genius child naps, you are perfectly finding the time and energy to dabble in abstract expressionism. I applaud you. Let the likes roll in! If any of your adoring friends/fans comment asking about your inspiration, let your toddler do the typing. I was inspired by “ndasjkbjka.” How exotic and intellectual you look! This toddler, she’s good for something besides leaving hummus handprints on the couch.

Now, say 3 hail mommies and buy some high quality paper for your artist to work on. It’s more believable that you did it that way. 

Monday, April 21, 2014

Problems at the Pump

Dear Ann,

Yesterday I checked off several tasks on my To Do list. I was even starting to feel a little self-satisfied as I filled up my car with gas and wiped down all the windows. Then I drove off with the gas nozzle still in my tank, and ripped the hose right off. I was really enjoying feeling good about myself, so who or what can I blame for this snafu?
~ Miss Gas & Go

Dear Miss Gas & Go,

First off, congratulations! This slight oversight must mean you have better things to think about than putting that nozzle back in its place. I mean, just think of the masses of mediocre minds that put the nozzle back every darn time. How predictable, really. You, on the other hand, have miraculous mental meanderings that might make you look like a total space cadet to the untrained observer. Luckily, I am here to assure you that you are no astronaut.

Rather than shift the blame, why not make it your claim to fame. You think Steve Jobs always put the nozzle back? Doubt it. Leonardo Da Vinci? Never. You are in good company, as sure as my logic is air tight.

However, if you still prefer to blame another to make yourself feel better, there are a plethora of potential culprits who are just as guilty for this filling station faux pas. Were there any children with you? I can almost guarantee that they were distracting you with their blathering on about, “my tooth is loose” and “is that thing still supposed to be attached to our car?”, etc. Was your cell phone ringing? You can blame the caller. Was there a catchy tune playing at the gas station? Blame the band. Were you having a pretend argument in your head with your boss? What an asshole…stick it to the man. Perhaps it’s a combination of the above, in which case, it’s ladies choice. Say one Hail Mommy and go on and brush your shoulders off.


p.s. However you decide to spin it, just remember, tragedy + time = comedy (and on a side note, tragedy plus comedy equals time, according to the always awesome PattonOswalt).  
p.p.s. Next time you fill up, maybe just treat yourself to full service.

Saturday, April 19, 2014

Do I really "like" my toddler?

Dear Ann Abler,

I give out more likes on Facebook than I do hugs to my toddler. Is this normal? In my defense, he really doesn't seem to be putting material out there that could go viral.


Dear #Momfail,

Until your baby starts building a better "brand" for himself, he can continue to expect low likes, both online and off. Help him understand that this is a competitive marketplace of memes, images, and pithy platitudes. Perhaps you can work on some trademark poses (e.g. peace sign, tongue out, sunglasses, etc.), or show him how hipster babies have cornered the market on cuteness. Try dressing your toddler like this kid below, and see if that elicits any emotion in your chest or head area.

No? Try this one:

Still nothing? When all else fails, break out the overalls - they make all babies look adorable. That should trigger the hugging impulse.

Say two hail mommies, and order some sushi tonight!


Thursday, April 17, 2014

Kiddy Claws

Dear Ann Abler,

I really avoid cutting my toddler's fingernails because he fights me at every step. Right now his little pinky nail gives the impression he is a cocaine addict. That's bad right?

- Nail Biter in Nevada 

Dear Nail Biter,

What's bad is that YOU could get scratched by your little monster's kiddy claws, so unfortunately, my patented avoidance techniques will not work this time. Go see if you have any fine or medium-grained sandpaper laying around and let him crawl around on all fours on it. If you're in a hurry, tell him there's a treasure under there. If you have a dog, feel free to re-purpose this suggestion with fluffy, and kill two birds with one stone - or "feed two birds with one seed," as my hippie friend likes to say. 

Say two hail mommies and give yourself double points! Then, just sit back, relax, and wait for your visit from Child Services.


Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Snack attack

Dear Ann,
I eat a lot of goldfish crackers. A lot. Is that sad?

Dear Fishy,

Only if they’re on the floor. For more than five seconds. Five second rule, yo! Say two hail mommies and check out the cupcake flavored ones. Go Fish. You’re welcome. Ciao.

Sunday, April 13, 2014

Elmo v. Grandma

Dear Ann Abler,

My toddler prefers FaceTime with Elmo over real time with Grandma. Is that a problem?


Face-off in Florida

Dear Face-off,

Your mother in law sounds like a boring old hag. Tell her to get off the couch, don a funny hat, and sing some songs. Your child is a sartorial genius and does not give out unwarrented affection.

Take a shot of tequila in the bathroom, say four hail mommies, and order a pizza for tonight. You've had a hard day choosing appropriate apps for your precious prodigy.


Friday, April 11, 2014

Your older kid can come in handy

Dear Ann Abler,

My baby fell asleep in my lap, so I called my seven y.o. daughter over to bring me a beer. Should I have asked for a glass of red wine instead? I hear it has antioxidants or magic in it. But beer has hops and something...

- Nap Lap Night Cap

Dear Nap Lap,

You should have asked for two. She might have been out of ear-shot the next time you needed her. If you feel inspired to live your life by following the advice of old French advertisements, then here's one you might like:

Say two hail mommies and chug the beer when the seven year old says, "mommy." It's a modern mother's drinking game.


p.s. You can always read up on beer and breastfeeding at La Leche League, if you are into facts.

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Touch Down

Dear Ann,
By the time my husband gets home from work, I feel too tired for any physical action with him. Also, after having my toddler on me all day, I feel a little “touched out.” What can I do to regain my sexual side?
-Out of Touch

Dear Out of Touch,

Feeling “touched out” is a totally real thing, but it’s not just your toddler that’s doing it. It’s all the dishes, laundry, diapers, toys, and floor cheerios you are touching as well that are physically wearing you out. I advocate that men get a 6 week postpartum checkup too. In order to be cleared for sex they must read and abide by your dearest Ann Abler’s forthcoming pamphlet, “Laundry is the New Foreplay.” If your husband put in an hour of housework while you lounged goddess-like on your toy free couch (stuff them in the cushions if you must) I guarantee that amorous feelings would arise. Educate your husband on the libido inducing effects of clean-sink-dishes-put-away and bed-made-with-all-yes-all-the-pillows. Already have one of those husbands that does the housework? Wine instead of whine, my love, and jump his bones. Say six hail mommies and don’t forget the birth control. Ciao.