This post is sponsored by VolunteerSpot.com.
I love 3:00 p.m. Not because that’s when “Judge Judy” is on, but because 3:00 p.m. is time the school bus stops on the corner and drops off my boys. I always wait by the front door, eager to hear about what they learned and who they played with during their eight hours away from me. Then, as soon as they walk inside the house, my precious little babies heave a big sigh, drop their backpacks on my foot and greet me with the sweet, sweet words: “Yo, can I have a snack?”
Okay, it’s not really that bad, but after a full day of school, they’re a little bit fried. Seriously, Jack looked like Reverend Jim from “Taxi” his entire second grade year. So that’s why I’ve always let them relax after they get home from school and do whatever they want. Watch TV, play on the computer, run around the cul-de-sac with their buddies—anything to let off a little steam before dinner and homework. I think of it as the equivalent of a Happy Hour after working all day in an office.
But now that they’re older—fifth and seventh grade—the after-school activities have begun in full force. We now have scout meetings, sports practice, playdates, honor society meetings, etc. and it tends to be really confusing to someone like me who isn’t exactly “competent” at keeping ever-changing schedules straight. I’m also not very skilled at reading the hundreds of Reply-All emails from the parents involved in organizing such activities. (“Not very skilled” = “Deleted them in a fit of rage.”)
That’s why I’m always pushing activity show runners to use VolunteerSpot.com, a wonderful online organizational tool founded by friend Karen Bantuveris. VS has free sign-up sheets and email reminders that are super helpful when it’s your turn to do things like bring the after-school soccer snack. (OMG, those little kids get vicious when they don’t get their juice boxes.) They help you coordinate any after-school volunteer type of activity so you don’t show up at ballet practice with 100 hot dog buns that were meant for the baseball concession stand.
And if that wasn’t enough good news for your school year, VolunteerSpot is celebrating Back to School with a HUGE sweepstakes where you can win more than $20,000 in prizes for you and your school! The current theme is “After School Cool”– some of the great prizes you can win for you AND your child’s after school group include a $500 Amex card (to fund uniforms, a trip, a celebration), Care.com FreeTime credits, and Cabot Creamery gift packs with enough artisan cheese to snack up the whole team! Plus you’ll be automatically entered to win a $1,500 grant for your favorite school!
‘Back 2 Cool Sweepstakes’ | After-School Cool: When You Plan, You Win!
After-school activities play a vital, positive role for children in fostering their interests, values and growth, and those activities take lots of coordination. Now is your chance to be After School Cool in the VolunteerSpot ‘Back 2 Cool’ Sweepstakes event and win amazing experiences for your afterschool groups, your school and you!
You can win one of these awesome After School Cool prizes for you and your school, and you’ll automatically be entered to win the grand prize in our Big ‘Back 2 Cool’ Sweepstakes – one of 3 – $1,500 Grants for your School and an iPad for you! Remember, share this giveaway with your friends and others at your school, and you can increase your chances of winning. Look at what your school and you can win:
Prizes You can Win for Yourself:
- $150 Care.com FreeTime credits* (5 winners)
- 2 Kiwi Crate 3-month Subscriptions (2 winners)
- $75 Cabot Creamery Gift Box (15 winners)
- $100 Gift Certificate to Afterschool.com (1 winner)
Prizes You can Win for Your Favorite Afterschool Group:
- $500 Fun Grant from Care.com (an Amex card to fund a trip, a celebration, uniforms or equipment)
- $250 Soap.com Gift Card to fund supplies or snacks
- $300 Kiwi Crate Class Activity Package
Just for entering, you’ll receive:
- 30% savings on a Care.com membership
- 25% off 1st month subscription to Kiwi Crate
AND you’ll be automatically entered to win a $1,500 Grant for your favorite School in our BIG Back to School Sweepstakes! (3 winners)
Dear Mouthy Housewives,
My new friend is selling one of those jewelry lines. Stella and Bella or whatever. The jewelry is not exactly my taste, but I feel bad not buying anything. She hasn’t pressured me at all, however I don’t want this to jeopardize a new friendship. Should I just buy something?
Keep Your Crown Jewels Away From Me
To read the answer, just click on over to BlogHer.
Dear Mouthy Housewives,
We live in a neighborhood where everyone decorates the outside of their house for Christmas. We never do because we go out of town and aren’t that into spending money on something that doesn’t matter to us. However, recently a couple of neighbors have passive-aggressively made comments about how bad it looks to have our house dark on a festive street. Should I cave in and hang up some lights (which I can’t afford to give either time or money to) or just ignore them? I don’t want to cause trouble.
Am I Gretchen the Grinch?
To read the answer, click here…
You know how much we love giving advice. But we Mouthy Housewives have to take a little hiatus. With all this heat our hair has gone haywire and we are beginning to look like the Richard Simmons quintuplets and that’s just not an appropriate look for the important task of helping you solve your problems.
Plus, the hot weather is just frying our brains, despite the fact that Marinka worked out a deal for Chris Brown to fan us and feed us ice cold grapes 24/7 as part of his community service requirements. Man, why can’t Ryan Gosling ever be on probation?!
Please enjoy your summer! We will probably spend most of it flying to and from London to help look after the royal bambino. Those first-time moms need a lot of guidance. We will miss you terribly, and as a coping mechanism, we will most likely have to partake in lemon drop shots and dirty dancing with Prince Harry. But we’ll still be over at BlogHer Moms with our weekly dose of wisdom, so visit us there!
Goodbye for now,
The Mouthy Housewives
Dear Mouthy Housewives,
My best friend’s husband texted me the other day out of nowhere (I don’t even know how he got my number!). At first I didn’t think anything of it, but then he started getting flirtatious. I did not flirt back and made sure I mentioned my fiancé more than once so the conversation could steer in a different direction (I mentioned wedding planning, house hunting, and his name).
I didn’t want to over-think it, but then he asked me if I minded that he was flirting with me and asked me to not tell his wife about the conversation. I of course told him that I rather he didn’t flirt because his wife is a good friend of mine and I don’t think she would appreciate it. I told my fiancé about the conversation and showed him the texts because I don’t want to hide anything from him. He was obviously pretty upset and doesn’t want me going over to my friend’s house anymore (especially when her husband is there); I also don’t feel comfortable going over there now either.
The dilemma I’m facing is whether I should break this news to my friend. They’re married and have a 1 year old baby. I don’t want to start drama especially when there is a marriage and family involved but I feel like I would want to know if my fiancé/husband was doing this to me. If her husband is texting me, then what else is he doing with other women that his wife isn’t friends with?? If I don’t tell and she finds out later on I feel like it might make matters worse but if I do tell her, then I think she will still be mad at me regardless. I feel like it’s a lose / lose situation and our friendship will not be same after this. What should I do?
Don’t Shoot The Messenger
You are between a rock and a hard place, my friend. There’s a wide spectrum of flirtation, so it’s a little hard to advise you not knowing if your friend’s husband wrote that you looked hot at the block party last weekend, or if he sent you a pic of his privates. HOWEVER, the fact that he specifically asked you not to tell his wife about the texts is super creepy. Bottom line is, you are not going to feel okay about any of this unless you tell her. I feel for you, I really do.
This situation sucks. Did you save the texts? It would help if you could actually show them to her. You can’t expect that she will immediately decide her husband (and father to her child) is a horrible person who she must leave immediately. Still, she’s probably going to feel threatened and defensive, and you need to let her know that you don’t hold her responsible for her husband’s actions, and that you hope it was just a misstep on his part and that you can all get past it.
I’m not sure his flirtatious texts to you are an indication that he’s doing this (or anything else) with other women, but it is a sign of extremely risky behavior on his part. No matter what, it made you uncomfortable, you didn’t reciprocate, and you did nothing wrong. Don’t let either of them try and turn this back on you (I’d bet good money that at least one of them will do exactly that).
Hopefully, this will just be a brief bump in the road for your friendship.