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Win Two Family Four-Packs of Tickets to the Colorado Garden & Home Show

“It is never too early to think about the growing season.”

Thus proclaimed my husband who is obsessed with growing The Great Pumpkin.

[photopress:EnchantedGarden_1.jpg,full,pp_image]He is not alone. More than 70,000 green thumbs and home improvement enthusiasts are expected to celebrate the arrival of spring and attend the 50th Annual Colorado Garden & Home Show Feb. 7-15, at the Colorado Convention Center in downtown Denver.

Families visiting the show will step into a fantasy world when they are greeted by a 25 ft. tall by 32 ft. long pirate ship, pirates and cannons that come to life staged in the “Secret Garden of Pirate’s Cove” Entry Garden presented by Bank of the West.

The show transforms 400,000 square feet of the Convention Center into a virtual marketplace of ideas and experts for improvements on your home. It’s a one-stop shopping and learning event

Local Impact of a Good Idea Gone Bad

Guest blogger Olivia Omega Logan is the local owner of the home-based infant clothing company, Baby Candy, and mom of two little inspirations. She is also the founder of Congrats from Colorado, a network of over 35 juvenile product manufactures all located in Colorado. With the onset of CPSIA, Olivia has created a blog that encourages small manufacturers to support each other and fight for their business’ survival. Appearing on several local and national news stations, radio shows and in newspaper articles, Olivia hopes to bring awareness to the issues surrounding the CPSIA and the wonderful companies that may be lost.

As a local small business owner within the juvenile product industry, the acronym CPSIA has rung in my ears for many weeks now. It stands for the Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act. And for many in the industry, it stands for good intensions gone very bad. The act was established to protect children from high lead levels in children’s products, namely toy with lead-based paint.

However, for me and for many local and national mompreneurs, it mean extremely high testing costs on inherently safe products (by August, annual testing could cost more than my actual revenues) and possible bankruptcy (www.NationalBankruptcyDay.com). Our dreams of entrepreneurship are fading as fast as some New Year’s resolutions.

The recent inauguration of President Obama was a family event for us. What a beautiful day for our country! My daughter (also named Malia – and similar in resemblance) was so excited that another girl named Malia gets to live in such a big house. I spent this historical day testing my 100% cotton T-shirts for lead in the hopes that I can become CPSIA compliant before the Feb. 10 deadline and hold onto my business for just a little bit longer. As moms, our dreams of being entrepreneurs, creating a foundation for our families, providing for generations to come, being all that God has called us to be, living the American dream is being stripped away by something so ridiculous.

Hot Topic: Spring Sports

The snow has barely finished melting but spring keeps arriving in my mailbox, with offers to sign my kids up for all sorts of sports. Spring sports sign ups are happening – What are your experiences with soccer, t-ball, flag football, etc? How “scheduled” are your kids?

Still a Cow Town?

When I announced to my former co-workers in New York that I was moving to Denver, I was pleasantly surprised by their reactions. Even though many of them were born-and-bred New Yorkers who would never think of leaving the city, several commented, almost wistfully, “You know, if I ever left New York, Denver would be one place I might go.”

If you know how New Yorkers feel about their city, then you know that’s high praise indeed.

It shows how perceptions of Denver have changed, even just in recent years. I recall hearing from Aimee Greeblemonkey that when she invited her east coast friends to her Denver wedding, they asked if cows roamed the streets. In all seriousness.

Uh, no. This is Denver, not Bombay.

Now, there definitely is more wildlife roaming around here than I was ever accustomed to seeing in and around the Lincoln Tunnel. When I came out for a house-hunting trip, there were seven deer in the front yard of the first house my realtor showed me. I stood stock still and just looked at them.

“Are you okay?” my realtor asked.

“Oh yeah,” I nodded. “But I just realized how far away from New York I am.”

Since then, I’ve spent many hours

Hands-On Mom?

“Dear God –” my mom prayed when I was 2 years old and she was pregnant with my middle sister.

You might think she prayed for a certain gender, for a healthy baby, for an easy delivery. But her prayer was along different lines:

“Please make this baby not persnickety about its hands the way Lori is.”

Apparently I was born fussy. I have always disliked having dirty hands. It doesn’t stop me from doing much because I can accommodate — gloves are my friends.

I am always attuned to whether my hands are clean or dirty. Mostly they are clean. But if I handle garden tools, take the kids to Chuck E Cheese, unwrap a package of chicken, pet a dog or hold my son’s hand for any length of time, I am keenly aware of their sullied nature. I do not touch my face, clean dishes or clean clothes until I wash my hands and restore my inner harmony.

On my own eve of motherhood, my prayers (unsaid because I was just happy to finally become a mom) would have been the reverse of my mom’s: “Please, God. Give me

How Did You Know “He’s Just Not That Into You” Contest!

[photopress:HJNT1.jpg,full,pp_image]Valentine’s Day is a time for many lovers to rejoice and for singles to ignore. Hate it or love it, we all agree that the path to true love is not always smooth.

Mile High Mamas is teaming up with the sure-to-be hit movie He’s Just Not that Into You to bring you a contest that will allow you to vent your lovelorn frustrations. We want to hear about the time when you got dumped or realized “He’s just not that into you.” All entries will receive general admission passes to the movie’s pre-screening on Tuesday, February 3rd. Three winners will be republished on Mile High Mamas and they and a guest will receive reserved seats at the pre-screening.

I have not always been the very epitome of romantic idealism you see before you (just work with me here). In college, I had a crush on a guy we’ll call Rett Meaty (name has been changed to protect the not-so innocent). Rett was hunky, funny, completely clueless and had women fawning all over him. He worked on campus at 4 a.m. and a girl in his complex drove him every day. “No worries,” she would say. “I’m awake at 3:30 a.m. anyway to go running at the track.” The track that did not open until 5:30 a.m.

But he wanted me. Or at least I liked to think so. We hung out regularly but there had been no romantic professions. Rett worked hard to get through school but was really poor. At one point, my mom sent him $20 to take me out to dinner. Imagine how thrilled I was when he came back to exclaim, “Hey, thank your mom for that money. Now I don’t have to donate plasma this month.”

Clueless.

I decided I would give good ol’ Rett one last chance. If he asked me out for Valentine’s Day,

One Book, One Denver to hold various free events; what are your favorite children’s books?

I am a huge advocate of reading. One of my earliest memories is snuggling up in my yellow canopied bed, pinning my little brother down, and reading Alice in Wonderland to him for hours.

Upon further reflection, he may not share the same fond memories.

I started attending storytime at the library when my daughter was six months old. It was initially more of a lifeline to get out of the house and socialize with other moms but it soon became part of our weekly routine.

That’s why I was thrilled to learn that the Denver Preschool Program (DPP), in partnership with the Denver Office of Cultural Affairs and the support of Kaplan Early Learning Company, have presented the first ever preschool-aged book selection in cooperation with the ongoing One Book, One Denver program.

[photopress:chairformother.jpg,thumb,pp_image]Basically, this new initiative aims to inspire parents, grandparents and other caregivers across the Denver community to take an active role in their children’s academic success by reading together. To help families foster a love of reading early in a child’s life, several community reading events will be held for the inaugural selection A Chair For My Mother by Vera B. Williams. Denver Mayor John Hickenlooper was one of many on the committee that chose this year’s Preschool One Book, One Denver book, which is a Caldecott Honor book.

For additional information and a calendar of events on Preschool One Book, One Denver that includes a meet-up with the author Vera Williams, please visit their Web site.

What were some of your favorite books as a child? What books have your children enjoyed throughout the years?

Just call me STOKED

[photopress:catherine.gif,full,pp_image]I don’t like labels. Never have. Even as a kid, I hated being known as The Shy Girl. At one point I tried hard to change it and in fourth or fifth grade I was given the principal’s award for “Outstanding Citizenship.” I really had no idea what it meant at the time except that, “Great, now I’m going to be labeled a CITIZEN.”

This loathing of labels, as you can imagine, has done nothing but given me multiple labels throughout my life. I’ve been wishy-washy, noncommittal, lazy, even snooty to some people. I went through this period in college where I was really intrigued by angels. Word got out to my family and pretty soon everyone was buying me books about angels, angel earrings, angel figurines, pillows with angelic embroidery. It really made me squeamish because this meant I had just been tagged… you guessed it… as an “Angel Collector.” Heaven forbid. I had to do some quick damage control and make it known that I wasn’t really into angel STUFF. Just, you know, the angels in THEORY. This was where the snootiness label came in.

And yes, there is some truth to the wishy-washiness, too. I can’t really decide whether I’m FOR being a hair dyer or against it. Or if I’m FOR being a Ghost Hunter enthusiast or kind of impassive about the whole thing. I recently mentioned to a co-worker that I was reading up on Buddhism and I immediately felt a box closing in around me. Was I going to be one of THOSE people in her mind? I imagined that she would now believe that I burn incense in my free time… as I write to my senators and congressmen, asking them to fight for the legalization of marijuana… all while in the Lotus position. True or not, why must I be LABELED as such?

Well. The damage was already done. I had put my fear of labels away long before the Buddhism thing, filed them under “No Longer Important” when I decided to campaign for Obama. For the first time in my life, I quit caring what anyone thought about me and followed my heart full throttle.

Win Two Family Four-Packs of Rodeo Tickets to the National Western Stock Show!

Every January is the same: The National Western Stock Show comes to town and we get sick with The Plague. But this year will be different. Not only am I plague-free but little did I know my reoccurring illness has left me bereft of a slew of fantastic activities for children.

And cowboys in chaps for the mamas.

The entire third floor of the Expo Hall at the National Western Complex is dedicated to entertaining and educating children. The area also features rabbit and poultry displays, as well as Feed the Animals displays, which offer visitors the opportunity to feed baby animals at specific times during the day.

Also located on the third floor, Children’s Ranchland offers numerous interactive displays of animals and agricultural facts to bring a balanced agricultural message to the participants.

The Stock Show’s Activity Pavilion features Backstage with a Rodeo Clown, Stick Horse Rodeos, Stick Horse Grand Prix, Children’s Tractor Races and Horseshoe Pitching and Roping Contests. The area is open from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. for children’s activities throughout the run of the show. Be sure to check their website for the most up-to-date Activity Pavilion schedules.
[photopress:Activity_Tent_1_1.jpg,full,pp_image] We will be offering two family four-packs of tickets for the rodeo. The first is for Wednesday, January 21st at 2 p.m. and the other is for Friday, January 23rd at 2 p.m. To enter, simply email us at giveaways@milehighmamas.com by January 20th at noon. Also, make sure to include the word “rodeo” in the subject line (or chaps if you really want to get in good….) and please let us know which day you are able to attend.

Mama Blogger of the Month–Amy of Tales from the Crib!

[photopress:Amy.jpg,full,pp_image]We are thrilled to have Amy of Tales from the Crib as our Mama Blogger of the Month. She is a mom of two boys and has recently taken up an important cause for one brave little girl.

1) Tell us about your little family and the overabundance of Y chromosomes at your house.

Shawn and I have been married for 7. 5 years, and have two boys: Jackson is 4.5 and Holden is 2. I’m a very girly-girl, and I come from a family filled to the top with women. My boys are the only boys on my side of the family. When we found out we were having a boy the first time I simply couldn’t wrap my head around what to do with a boy. I knew pink and dolls and dress up, not blue and trucks and trains. But oh man, the minute Jackson was born, I was hooked. We were thrilled when we found out Holden was a boy as well. My hubby is a pretty environmentally friendly kind of guy, so of course he liked the recycled aspect of having another boy as well – clothes, gear, nursery, etc! It worked out perfectly.

I hate to say that our boys are “stereotypical” because I don’t like to place specific gender rolls on them, but they really are both “all boy.” The love trucks and trains and cars and superheroes, and well, you get my point. I can’t walk two feet without stubbing a toe on something with wheels. That’s how it goes around our house, and I love it! Boys love their mamas, and in my case, they are also quite crazy about their Daddy, too. We are very blessed.

2) You have recently taken up