Elfin' Magic

I was nestled all snug in my bed again last night, about to drift off to much-needed sleep, when it hit me: Oh, sh–! I forgot to move the elf. 

Covers off. Slippers on. Back downstairs to reluctantly make merry mischief.

Many of you have been there. Every one of you who has an Elf on the Shelf, aka, Santa's Narc. My kids named ours Elfy (clever, right?), but when they're out of earshot, I call him the same thing all parents call theirs...

Bloody But Unbowed

I did something kind of crazy today. Bordering on suicidal. I went and played soccer for my women's pick-up league, in spite of the baseball sized hematoma covering my right shin and foot.

For those of you not familiar with the sport, soccer is a game that requires nonstop use of your feet, which could possibly be why the Europeans call it football.  So there I was, running on my bruised foot, THUD! Dribbling with my bruised foot, THUMP! Passing with my bruised foot, THWACK! Kicking the heck out of the ball over and over and over again with my bruised foot, WHACK! WHACK! WHACK! And all I could think was, what the hell is wrong with me?

Teach Kids Gratitude and (Maybe) Someday They'll Thank You

This post originally ran on Patch a while ago, but I'm reprinting it here in honor of Thanksgiving...

help children be happy with what they have, michelle sassa, feminine mystake
We’ve nicknamed my daughter “Ms. More” because, since the day she was born, she's always angled to get more than she has. If I agree to let her have one cookie, she immediately wants two. Before I’m even done reading her a bedtime story, she’s already asking for another.

Recently, I was discussing plans for her 8th birthday with my husband when he remarked, “It doesn’t matter what you do. She won’t appreciate it anyway.”

Mom's Out of Order

You know it's going to be a bad day when a nagging injury wakes you at 4 a.m. and you limp into the kitchen for an ice pack only to find water dripping down the freezer's shelves and all the ice cubes clumping together like kitty litter. But I did what any normal, half-asleep housewife would do–I threw a towel over the puddle and went back to bed, hoping the whole mess would somehow work itself out by morning.

When Did Halloween Become the New Christmas?

Some years, Halloween falls on a weekend so all the little ghouls get to start trick-or-treating at noon. But this year, October 31st falls on a Friday and my kids are bummed that they have to go to school. Roo and the Duke actually asked if they can stay home that day.

I had to explain that, no, Halloween is NOT a national holiday like Christmas or Labor Day, so people don’t get off of school or work for it.

My First Lockdown. Holy $H–!

So there I was at my son's parent-teacher conference this Wednesday, two minutes into hearing how superawesomeamazeball the Duke is doing. I was feeling good and gooey with pride since, clearly, I'm the tree the apple didn't fall far from. And that's when the announcement came over the loudspeaker–


Worse Parents Than You

Right as this school year was getting underway, I came across a news story about a mother who showed up to school pick-up insanely drunk. And instead of feeling bad for her child or sympathethic towards the woman's troubles, my first thought was, "Wow, next to her, I sound like a pretty good mom."

First Day Back! Yippee! (Sniffle Sniffle)

Third Grade Here We Come!
All the social media sites are abuzz with posts and pics about the first day of school. Shots of boys and girls in their spiffy new clothes and shiny smiles, accompanied by shouts of Hooray! and Yippee! and #firstdayofkindergarten or #mybabyisinhighschool! 

After a loooong summer with the kids underfoot, the excitement is understandable. But I couldn't help noticing there have been quite a few posts from parents feeling unhappy, depressed, even in denial, peppered with sad face emoticons and hasthags like wheredidthetimego? 

Summer Reality Check

Sigh...Summer is in full swing and I just want to sleep late, go to the beach, ride bikes and get lost in the magic of an ice cream cone.  Remember when we were kids and playing was our only job?

My New Hero: Alysia Montaño

Weekly 'What Th–"

Now that my kids are off school for the summer, I've been burning the candle at seven ends trying to finish my second book and do freelance work in between swim dates and the incessant demands of home life, while attempting (laugh) to find time to exercise. All the early mornings, late hours and juggling have made me more than a little cranky.

Then one night while procrasti-writing, I come across a news story about her:

Andy Lyons/Getty Images

Rules of a Feminist Father

The supportive father of a 20 year-old girl from Cherry Hill, NJ was photographed wearing a t-shirt displaying the rules for dating his daughter, and the pic has gone totally viral.

Put Up Your Daisy Dukes

These jorts have about as much fabric as a handkerchief.

One of the big stories going around the net right now involves an 11th grade girl from Canada who was sent home for wearing short shorts and went on to protest the school's dress code, causing one heck of a stir.

Goldilocks And The Three Butts

I've been in my house for 12 years, which means all our toilets are starting to go. Tired of having to plunge malfunctioning bowls, my husband recently asked me if I could buy thinner toilet paper. Apparently all that cushiony softness we were paying extra for was clogging the loo and he wanted it to stop. It's bad enough my three kids each use ten squares to do the job of two.

Yippee! I Got An Agent!

Some news is so big, you just want to scream it from the rooftops. Stuff like, "I lost my virginity!" or "I'm getting married!" or "We had a baby!"

Cherry-popping aside, those other life events are okay to broadcast because it's universally known that people will be happy for you–or act like they are. Then there's the kind of news I recently got which is more personal, and requires people know you or the situation well enough to know exactly how big that news is for you.

WEEKLY "WHAT TH–": Not Your Daughter's Barbie

Lately, the folks behind Barbie have been going hog wild trying to find ways to keep the disproportionate plastic icon modern and relevant. Exhibit A: the new Sports Illustrated Swimsuit doll. She made her debut posing in the mag's 2014 Swimsuit Issue and quickly flew off the shelves of Target...

Ban Bossy? Or help my daughter be The Boss?

I am a sucker for anything pro-women, much to my man's inner eye rolling. So when I heard about the new campaign to Ban Bossy being launched by female heavy hitters Sheryl Sandberg, Girl Scouts CEO Anna Maria Chávez and former secretary of state Condi Rice, I was all like, "Woo Hoo, you go girls! Where do I sign my fem-lovin' self up?"

You Go, Beyonce Girl! Way to own being Ms. Bossy Sauce!

What's in an Effin Name?

Is Jimmy Kimmel onto the next celebrity trend, naming babies after curse words?

A few weeks back, Jimmy Kimmel announced on "The Ellen Degeneres Show" that he and his wife are having a baby. And while he joked about going all Kardashian and naming the kid either Karate or The Riddler, it was his choice for a middle name that I found hilariously inspiring.

Running Away Money

excerpted from the book, "The Feminine Mystake," coming soonish...

“Always have some running away money.”

This was the slice of optimistic advice I got from my Aunt right before I got married. A mother of four, she’d been married for two decades to a guy she caught making out with her babysitter. In her car. While she was out working to support the family. She left him so fast there were tire marks on his penis. 

WEEKLY "WHAT TH–": Sex Checks for Soccer Chicks

Did you hear the one about the Iranian women's national soccer team? Turns out, four of its top players were really men, so now everyone in their pro league has to undergo a mandatory sex check to confirm they are in fact female.

World's Best Worst Mom

Those who know me from afar may have formed the impression that I've got my act together. I shower at least once a week, occasionally show up in an outfit that matches and doesn't include yoga pants, and my reasonably well-behaved kids turn homework in mostly on time, robotically saying please and thank you. I am, after all, a Virgo, the zodiac sign best known for the annoying trait of being perfectionists to a fault. So when I do screw up, people around me are blindsided.

parenting screw-ups, world's worst best mom

And my most recent faux pas? Boy was this one a doozy.

Chocolate Covered Oreos. A Cheap, Easy Way to Say I Love You.

A Valentine's Treat for the Baking Inept

michelle sassa,the feminine mistake, Cheap easy valentine's treat
Nothing says, “I love you” like chocolate. Nothing says, “I love myself” like a crowd-pleasing confection even the baking inept can bang out in ten minutes with stuff you have in the house.
I needed to send in a treat for my twins’ Valentine’s Party at school, and since it was also Show ‘n Tell day for the letter “O”, Oreos immediately came to mind. I had Nestle morsels and a box of candy hearts left over from last Valentine’s Day (they never go stale) so I was off and running. Chocolate Covered Oreos. Sweet, simple, genius. Without really trying.

WEEKLY "WHAT TH–": Plastic Surgery App for Girls

"Hey girls! How would you like to play DIY Doctor and perform liposuction right from the comfort of your own living room?"

Does anyone need further proof that the apocalypse is upon us?

I'm A Moron. And an Oxymoron.

Welcome to my blog.

I grew up under the shadow of a little old revolution some of you may recall as the Women's Liberation Movement. Which no doubt explained my boyish, cropped Dorothy Hamill haircut and the fact that I gladly let my brothers burn my Barbie Dolls to a crisp using leftover 4th of July fireworks.

The book that's to blame for this blog
The book that burned a billion bras. It's also to blame for this blog.
My pro-women's lib mama raised me to be strong, independent and as fierce as any man. Then, in my twenties when I informed her I was going to grad school to advance my career, her response was, "Why? You're just going to have to give it up when you get married and have babies."

Forget the New Year's Resolutions. Have an Attitude Adjustment Instead.

Let’s all resolve to stop whining and start thinking positive before I smack you.

It’s resolution time again, and everyone I know is concocting their admirable, if not impossible, goals for the New Year:

“I’m going to lose 50 pounds. By February.”

“I’m going to climb Mt. Kiliminjaro. Twice.”

”I’m going to stop drunk online shopping.”

Whew. All these lofty goals make me wanna veg on my couch with a bag of chips and a martini, surfing the net for sales. This year, I’m proposing a simpler change: how about we all make a vow to stop whining and start thinking positive?