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New Year, New Mom (Not Really)


8new year's resolutions 20

Hello, 2018. I’m afraid we haven’t gotten off to a very good start. This was going to be the year I turned things around, and became the brunette version of Carol Brady, minus a few kids and a housekeeper. This year I would calmly solve all my kids’ problems, keep up the house, serve healthy food, and, in all my spare time, focus on diet and exercise. Well, it’s two weeks in, and already I’ve broken most of my New Year’s resolutions. In fact, the only thing I can really boast about so far is that I’m still brunette.

Here’s a look at the lofty goals I set in 2017…and how they’ve all been crashing and burning in the New Year.

Mommy is an island of Zen. The 2018 version of Mommy was supposed to be an unflappable goddess floating on a cloud of warmth and serenity, spreading peace to all she passes. Instead of yelling, I would blanket my little angels in gentle wisdom and love. Of course, doling out wisdom is a little challenging when your kids are re-enacting the Hunger Games over a Tootsie Roll pop one of them found under the couch from last Valentine’s Day. Sorry kids, here comes 2017 Mommy, and she’s a lot more Roseanne Barr than Carol Brady.

Mommy is a domestic diva. More like Alice than Carol Brady, I was going to bring in the New Year by finally getting to those home improvement projects I’ve been threatening my family with since last New Year’s. I’d go through the kids clothes and toys and get rid of all the stuff. Once I could see the floor I’d clean it. Dressers would be orderly. Papers would be organized. Things would be shiny. So far: I found one of my daughter’s missing socks in my work bag. Score!

Mommy is Julia Child. Or some other chef born after 1912 that I would know if I ever watched the Food Network or cooked things that weren’t Mac ‘n’ Cheese. So far my attempts to spice up our weeknight menu have been slow-going, although I did get both kids to eat broccoli the other night, which felt like a parenting win. Until the next day, when I realized we were overdue for a grocery trip and shoved an entire McDonald’s apple pie in my daughter’s backpack for her afterschool club snack. Hey, apples are healthy, right?

Mommy is a buff goddess. Let’s face it: 2017 was a rough year. The kind of year you want to curl up on the couch and binge watch Stranger Things while binging on candy you’ve confiscated from the kids. I made myself a promise to cut out the sugar and bring on the fruits, veggies, and exercise. So far it’s going great: I’ve been snacking on peanuts and oranges at the office, and walking 1-2 miles each day. And, no, those aren’t cookie crumbs falling on the keyboard as I write this…

Mommy is the queen of homework. No more rants about Common Core being a Russian conspiracy. No more realizing the night before my daughter’s science test that I don’t have the password for the science website. Yes, homework is my kids’ responsibility, but I’d be there to lend a hand, check an equation, and make sure everything is handed in on time. My grade so far: I’ve emptied out their take-home folders (almost) every night this week!

So, I’m not gonna lie: 2018 could be going better. But, it’s still early. There’s still time to get my act together, add some order to my life, and maybe even throw in a load of laundry. I may not have Carol Brady’s perfect hair or more perfect housekeeper, but I’ve still got a shot at being a new and improved version of me this year. Or at least figuring out which channel the Food Network is on. Until then, I’ll keep trying to be the best imperfect mom I can be. Only 11 more months to make those 2019 resolutions!

Check out my upcoming book, American Mom: A Celebration of Motherhood in Pop Culture (Sterling 2018) — a beautifully illustrated, perfect gift for Mother’s Day, baby showers, birthdays, and more!


  1. I haven’t the energy to set lofty goals for myself. The only one I know I’ll succeed in doing is buying and reading your book. So, bring it on!

  2. we all make resolutions we know we cannot do. we can hope!

  3. A time for reflection and as commenter Dan says, “Hope”.

    You sound like an Unflappable Goddess to me.

  4. I am not sure how I landed in this blog but I am so thankful I clicked! This is a fantastically accurate post about most mom goals. And I don’t mind being a bit more Roseanne;-)

  5. Hands up, sista! I’m with ya! I’ve been trying to paint a bathroom cabinet for weeks. After the normal household cleaning, it just hasn’t happened. The healthy cooking…sometimes. Then sometimes we eat fast food all day. You’re doing better than me with the walking! I’m trying to figure out how to work from home by blogging and repurposing furniture so that I can be at home with my little girl. I’ve started my own blog and have been going strong with that for a few weeks now. However, right now I know that I’m losing sleep because my little girl WILL wake up at her normal time even though we could sleep in tomorrow. The joys of motherhood!

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