June Blogger Spotlight — parenting BY dummies
June 4, 2012 ~
The title of her blog may be parenting BY dummies, and her nom de plume may be Dumb Mom, but make no mistake, this mom is sharp. A lighthearted blogger with a passion for humor and education, Dumb Mom is a champion of imperfect parents everywhere and a resource to her readers. She’s also a long-time Kumon Parent – a smart choice for the June Blogger Spotlight.
Tell me about yourself — family, interests, etc.
I am the mom to three energetic Dudes ages 10, 7 and 4, and a mostly adorable baby dog daughter. I’m married to a man I met on my very first day of college. We are native Californians living under duress on the East Coast. When it’s not the middle of the winter, I’d say this place is growing on me.
Why did you start the blog?
I discovered the world of blogging thanks to my non-mom mom-blog-stalking best friend. She used to read mom blogs and then tell me about them. After I recounted a particularly horrifying story about a trip to Ikea with a five-year-old, a toddler and a newborn, she convinced me that I had enough good material to start my own blog. The rest is history (which you can read on my blog if you want!).
What’s your inspiration to continue blogging?
For me blogging has become a community. I love being able to share my stories and get instant feedback from other moms who’ve had similar experiences. Plus I feel that parenting BY dummies provides that for other people as well. Plus, writing and being funny are sorta my thing; I can do both on my blog, and my husband doesn’t have to listen to all of my jokes anymore. Total score for him!
If someone only looked at the parenting BY dummies once, what would you want their impression to be? What would you want them to take away from your blog?
Funny and, um, funny! I make it a point to infuse humor in every post. I mean sure, some of them are just lighthearted, but there are plenty of pee-your-pants stories on there too. For me, I don’t enjoy the Debbie Downer genre of blogging so I don’t want mine to be that either. Complaining and whining are what I hear all day in the real world so I’m over it when I sign on for a little blog reading. I want people to know that if they come to pBd, expect to leave with a smile. Oh and good pictures. I take lots of good pictures.
We’re dedicating the month of June to helping families avoid the summer slide. How do you keep your children motivated to learn?
Grrrr. This is hard. Come summer, I really just want to sit by the pool and hit the lake and generally spend all day exhausting my children so they don’t have the energy to drive me insane. BUT. As a former teacher myself, I know how important it is for them to stay up on their skills so we work in a little learning every day. We play a lot of educational games (usually ones that involve physical activity). My kids are big technology heads, so we make them earn their Wii and iPad time either by doing some reading or by playing an educational game before they turn over to the leisure stuff. Plus, my son is in Kumon, which plays a huge role in keeping him math-ready during the summer.
What’s your favorite part of summer?
The sun. And the fact that I can send the kids out into the yard for peace and quiet. And exercise, of course.
Do you have any activities to share with our fans that keep kids busy and engaged? Fun, creative or educational activities?
We have a lot of rainy day activities around here because my kids seem to lose their minds when precipitation hits. We play letter detective (I hide a letter and they search the house for it), and we play this game we made up called Who Would Win a Battle. It’s easy and only requires your imagination. One person says, “Who Would Win a Battle? Spiderman or Superman?” Then, the other players have to say who they think would win and why. It’s amazing how long this keeps my children engaged. And how many fights I don’t have to break up.
Tell us more about your experience with Kumon.
My oldest son is a Kumon Student! He started during 3rd grade when the timed multiplication tests were starting to wreak havoc on his confidence. Since starting the program he has gone from literally sitting at his desk each night crying his eyes out, to coming home and proclaiming he’s the best math student in his class! I won’t say that he’s really the best math student in his class, but I will say that his confidence has grown in leaps and bounds, and that’s what matters the most to us.