What are your plans this Memorial Day Weekend? (We have a few suggestions.) I am looking forward to a few lazy days hanging around the house after spending the last week traveling with my family. Our trip to North Carolina was a success — the kids did mostly alright on the plane (more on that at the bottom), the beach was gorgeous, and we got to spend tons of time with far-away family. But I love this place and it’s always a good feeling to pull into town after being away. Have a great long weekend, everybody! To kick it off, here are some fun links from around the web:

Emma Watson will star in a live-action version of Disney’s “Beauty and the Beast.”

How to make toast for a toddler.

Lena Dunham wrote an essay about breaking her addiction to saying “sorry.”

One of my favorite songs on Adele’s new album (I mean, they’re all perfect…) just got the gorgeous video treatment.

Take Mom to a movie this weekend. “The Meddler” is finally showing in town and I’m excited to go see it with my favorite meddler. “Mother’s Day” is still in theaters, too, I guess. But that looks kind of terrible, right?

On the heartbreaking difficulty of getting rid of books.

You’re pronouncing “Ikea” wrong.


OK, so, flying with two small kids. It was…not relaxing.

A few years ago, I flew across the country alone with Kate when she was just a baby. As we were leaving the plane at the end of that flight, several other passengers told me what a great baby she was and I remember thinking, “Or maybe I’m a great mom who read, sang, tickled, rocked, juggled, and just generally pulled off a flipping five-hour parenting miracle. But sure, call the baby great.” Well, that’s how I felt again this time. The girls were good on the flight out to North Carolina. Really, they were. But the flight home was rough.

It got off to a bad start. While we were waiting to board at Raleigh-Durham, my husband got stuck in a freakishly long line for Five Guys at the other end of the airport and the girls became absolute hellions — ignoring me, running around the terminal, crawling under chairs, asking strangers if they could try their sandwiches. I was mortified and near tears thinking about getting on the plane with these monsters until a kind TSA officer (a grandmother herself) scared those two little brats straight. She sat them down, gave them each a dollar bill and sternly told them that she would take the money back if they didn’t start listening to me. Then she didn’t even correct me when I told them she was a police officer and would put them in jail if they ran off again. So, thank you, TSA lady. I think I love you.

Unfortunately, the kids forgot all about the threat of jail time once we were on the plane. They tore off their shoes and socks and DEMANDED to remain barefoot the entire flight, even in the bathroom, which they both needed — NEEDED — to use at completely terrible times. Seriously? Now? I’m pretty sure the back wheels are still on the ground. They were incredulous when I told them to just go in their diapers. (Sidebar: Could you be cool and not tell the Mother of the Year Award committee I said that?) They didn’t like our selection of DVDs. The books we brought were old news. Their ears popped. They sucked up every apple sauce pouch in the entire world and asked for more. And while Wendy’s advice had worked well on the flight out, my husband and I decided the best thing to do on this rough return flight was to drug them. So the sometimes barfy kid got Dramamine and the cranky, overly tired toddler got melatonin. They spent the rest of the flight asleep (passed out?) on my legs, which hurt like hell after a while but there was no way I was moving.

The woman across the aisle from us was incredible. An inspiration. She was like this perfect new mom who had read all about flying with babies. When the plane took off, she grabbed that baby of hers and shoved him on her boob. Once we were in the air, she attached this homemade felt board thing to the seat and let him play happily with cute little sunshines, hearts and other shapes that stuck to the board. She brought out this educational-looking sound maker thing that elicited giggles of baby delight. I think the kid actually learned his colors on this flight. Bravo, Mom.

Meanwhile, back in our toddler opium den, I creepily watched the good mom over there, played with my sleeping girls’ hair and wondered if the drink cart was ever coming back.

Bottom line: Being prepared helps. Drugs help. And when someone tells you how great your kid was on the flight, just say thanks. We both know who the true hero is.