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    Anderson Cooper Loves Mommy Needs a Cocktail Tees

    May 23, 2012

    There was this one day Anderson Cooper called me because I sold this Mommy Needs a Cocktail shirt at Baby Brewing

    Mommy Needs a Cocktail Tee

    Mommy Needs a Cocktail Tee

    And I went on the show to discover my segment was called this…
    Anderson Cooper Moms Behaving Badly

    Anderson Cooper Moms Behaving Badly

    My 17 seconds of fame begins on Friday, May 25 on Anderson Cooper. And by “fame” I of course mean, “sales of thousands of shirts.” You should watch, if only to see the Great Haircut Tragedy of 2012. Seriously. Four years of law school at night while I worked full-time and my television debut is an episode of mothers who (gasp!) drink. It’s everything I hoped and dreamed when I was a starry-eyed 20-something. I’m sure my parents would agree.

    And you should totally buy this Daddy Needs a Beer tee for Father’s Day, since we’re talking about it now.

    Daddy Needs a Beer tshirt

    Daddy Needs a Beer

    Grandpa and PopPop too. I sacrificed my dignity for your entertainment. The least you could do is help me pay my electric bill.

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    CPSIA, or How to Lose Your Small Business and the Shirt Off Your Back

    January 22, 2009

    Baby Brewing


    The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission is charged with protecting the public from unreasonable risks of serious injury or death from thousands of types of consumer products under the agency’s jurisdiction. The CPSC is committed to protecting consumers and families from products that pose a fire, electrical, chemical, or mechanical hazard. The CPSC’s work to ensure the safety of consumer products – such as toys, cribs, power tools, cigarette lighters, and household chemicals – contributed significantly to the decline in the rate of deaths and injuries associated with consumer products over the past 30 years.

    The emphasis was added by me.  I’m sitting here at my computer trying to think of something thoughtful and coherent to write about this new law known as the Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act (CPSIA) which goes into effect on February 10, 2009.  I’m at a loss.  No, wait.  Losing is what is about to happen to me.  Julie from Mother Goose Mouse tagged me on this and when Julie asks you to do anything, you just do it. 

    Maybe you have heard about it, maybe you haven’t.  A result of that horrible fiasco with Mattel a year ago when they provided China with the lead-free paint and the manufacturers sold the lead-free paint and slapped on lead-FILLED paint on toys, Congress rushed this lead testing legislation right on through.  In fact, it received one”nay” in the House on the first pass (Thank you very much, Ron Paul).  The Senate?  Nearly as pathetic. 

    “We must protect the children.”  I find it fascinating after having read the legislation that those who passed it may not have even given it a glance.  Rather than target items that have in the past been found harmful for children (such as toys), the legislation takes a fabulously broad CYA approach.  If we require everyone to repeatedly test everything for lead, we will ensure that children will not be exposed to it.  Sounds great in theory, right?  Except now everything that could go in the mouth of a child 12 and under has to be tested for lead.  Even things that have never harmed children before.  Even things that have never had lead in them.  We are required to repeatedly test these lead-free items:  first the manufacturer and then anyone else down the line who alters the item in any way.  My shirts that are made by American Apparel?  Even though American Apparel has tested them and found no lead, I have to test them again because I alter them by screen printing.  My ink that I use?  Lead-free.  Already tested.  I still have to test the finished product.  I find this overwhelming since I’m not exactly sure how I would get lead into these lead-free tees with lead-free ink.  I guess it’s time to take the tin foil hat off my head. 

    I cannot find one case of lead poisoning as a result of lead in 100% cotton tees.  If you know of one, let me know.  How exactly is this law making kids safer if in some cases they were already safe?  The legislation is filled, however, with promises of millions of dollars to do research to determine the effects of lead on all of these things if they were to ever have lead in them.  Um, okay? Do I think toys should be tested?  Of course.  My kids put everything in their mouth when they were little.  That seems logical to me.  Raise the fines and consequences for people who break the law and expose kids to unsafe conditions?  Absolutely.  Throw out this tremendous net thinking it will keep those who need to be watched on track?  Insanity. 

    The trouble is, children’s apparel is included in this lead testing legislation.  No one trusts China anymore but because of our trade agreements, our rules have to be the same.  I have to have all of my kids clothing tested for lead which has never been in the dye in my clothing and isn’t now.  This law doesn’t make children any safer because they were never at risk from my clothing.  


    And wait ’til you hear about the testing.  I have to send completed items to be tested.  So if my “I’m better than a puppy” comes in pink, blue, organic cotton and white with brown ink, I have to send in four completed tees in each size.  They will charge me for each component (tee and ink) for all four.  They are going to charge me $75 four times to test the same ink on four different shirts.  Did I mention that my ink company has already tested the ink and that the lead contained it in was so incredibly small that it didn’t even register?  That American Apparel has to do these same tests before they send their cotton tees to me?  They will send me certifications that the shirts comply but the law says I have to retest.  So now I have to send full shirts out that will or will not be destroyed as a result of testing, at a cost of $150 per shirt.  To put it in perspective, I will have to pay $1,800 just to test the “I’m better than a puppy” tee (that doesn’t include the onesies and the long sleeve tees).  Maybe I shouldn’t have offered all those colors in all those different styles.  Maybe I shouldn’t have given my customers so many options.  The law is retroactive so everything I have sitting around has to be tested.  I find myself with a couple of this color in this size and a couple of this color in this size.  When I say a couple, I mean that over six sizes, 16 styles and different colors, I am sitting on around 500 tees.  Let’s not get into the fact that $900 of that testing on those four shirts for just ONE STYLE of the “I’m better than a puppy” is for ink that has already been fully tested once and DOESN’T EVEN REGISTER THE LEAD, LET ALONE GET ANYWHERE NEAR THE LEAD LIMIT. 

    As a student of the law, I can tell you that there is no shortage of legislation regarding consumer protection.  I’m a firm believer that toys and other items that are or could be harmful to children should be banned.  Rails of cribs that kids can chew on?  Shouldn’t have lead.  But passing legislation that basically says anything that can ever go in the mouth of a child 12 and under must be tested for lead is ridiculous.  Requiring people to re-test after a manufacturer has already tested is ridiculous and a waste of money.  Requiring people to be tested by a previously approved testing facility mandated by the government makes you wonder if you are in the wrong business.

    In this economy, Congress has successfully pissed off a wide range of people.  Wait until all the Green people realize that old toys will have to be thrown into a landfill rather than be recycled because any sale of them will violate this law.  How about those of us who loved to scour consignment stores because it is better suited for our budget and we don’t NEED new every single time?  Love yourself some Etsy?  Every single one of those people making stuff for kids will most likely be shut down by the cost prohibitive testing (which most likely will already have been done by manufacturers anyway). 

    But, Internet, while excessive and unnecessary government intervention is screwing me, there is a rainbow for you.  That rainbow is the HUGE sale at Baby Brewing.  All of the kid and baby tees, regularly $16, are now $6.  I figure it is better to cut my losses now rather than either wait for Congress to have their heads removed from their, well, okay, who are we kidding?  If you could hook a sister up and pass the word along to your friends, I would really appreciate it.  Come on.  Everyone you know is having a baby.  It can’t hurt to stick a tee in a closet for a baby shower or a preschooler party you forgot you were getting stuck attending. 

    If you want to read more about this travesty with the CPSIA (and all of the industries that will effectively be shut down), others have done a much better job of explaining it in a way that does not ramble or seem like a rant.  I’m off to cry myself to sleep. 

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    Auntie needs everyone to shut up about Mother’s Day

    May 9, 2008

    It starts. Mother’s Day is around the corner and suddenly everyone feels the need to quantify what a mom is worth and to worship at her altar. I used to think that Mother’s Day is bunk and that we should be worshiped on a daily basis, but let’s be honest here. At least we get one day a year. So we are tortured because invariably the kids will get sick or be cranky or fight and no one will properly perform and no one will get the memo that if Mother’s Day is about mothers, then why the hell are we spending it with our children, like we do the other 364 days of the year.

    And then there are my child-free friends. I don’t even like to bring Mother’s Day up because I know how annoying it can be for the people without kids. Either by choice or by circumstance, it’s still annoying. I remember when I was single and people would wish me “Happy Mother’s Day.” Personally, I thought it was odd. It didn’t really offend me. I thought it was just weird.

    What do you think?

    So, in honor of all my girls who will be tortured by Mother’s Day, I planned to give you the latest in hilarious tees from Baby Brewing…

    Auntie Needs a Cocktail

    I have them. I just can’t get them up on Baby Brewing due to technical problems whereby I am tortured. So if you want one and you just can’t wait, go over and order a MNAC shirt in the size you want (they are the same font in the same size) and put it in the comments that you want an AUNTIE shirt instead. Available in black or brown, s,m,l,xl,2xl and in women’s sizes in black (16-18, 20-22, 24-26, 28-30) and also in black and brown tanks in s,m,l,xl, 2xl. We are calling it the ghetto rollout. But you girls deserve a little something for the crappy weekend too. WOOHOO!!

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    Somebody do me a favor and hide the Amex card again

    March 13, 2008


    I need you to just not ask my why I am doing buttons related to brides.  All I can say is that Kimberle and The Babysitter will be happy.  My husband?  Not so much.  And while I was making this one, The Boy stole my glue stick and dug all the glue out.  But isn’t it the cutest thing ever? 

    Matron of Honor

    While I made this one, The Baby decided to wash his hands in the toilet.  There was extensive discussion regarding what was actually in the bowl when he started his little bathing, but his brother swears he FLUSHED the poop before his brother went on in.  Then these came in the mail.  Can you even imagine placing your martini glass on this cute little napkin?  When I went outside to pick up these boxes, The Baby decided to walk down the stairs.  Except he can’t walk.  And certainly not down stairs.  When he hit the landing, he was pissed.  Thank God for carpet.  The Boy?  Downloading Go, Diego, Go videos from YouTube on my phone and sending them to all the people on my contact list.  That and he rearranged all the icons on the front page.  I would change them back but I have no idea how to do it.  He tried to explain it to me but it was too complicated. 

    Mommy Needs a Cocktail Napkins

    When these arrived, Michael from my new wireless merchant service place was trying to give me excellent customer service by visiting at my place of employment.  Which is my living room.  It used to just be the basement, but I am now trickling up the stairs.  As Michael discussed discount rates and fees, The Baby began to unload Michael’s briefcase.  He called him “Dad” and stole his pen.  The Boy began jumping from the crates of shirts onto the top of the back of my chair.  every once in a while he missed.  And landed on my head.  The Boy then began to push The Baby around in the Little Tikes car at about 40 miles per hour.  It was only a matter of time before the big wipeout occurred and everyone was crying.  Michael?  Still trying to explain the process.  Me?  Offering Michael hard alcohol.  He graciously refused.    I decided not to hold it against him.

    Mommy Needs a Cocktail Postit Notes

    And aren’t these the cutest little hostess gift?  I’m hoping I can keep them away from The Boy.  And his father.  Those boys are FA-reaks when it comes to post it notes.

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    I guess it all depends on who you call “Mommy”

    March 1, 2008

    This guy is annoyed because the XL Pink Mommy Needs a Cocktail shirt seems too small.  I am in the middle of my elaborate explanation of how I have designed a new tee because I want to have shirts for EVERYONE.  This guy is listening intently.  He’s holding up an XL.  He’s putting it down.  He’s holding it back up.  He puts it down. 

    “I’ll take it.”

    K:  Look, we have a very liberal return policy.  If it doesn’t fit her, just email me.

    “Oh, it’s not for a “she.”

    Well…..alrightly then.

    Props to my friend Wendy who helped me sell everything not tied down today.  We’ll be living through day 2 tomorrow (me and The Cake Lady) at the DC International Wine and Food Festival.   Trish found us today. 

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    It’s all an illusion of proper parenting

    February 27, 2008

    Tonight The Cake Lady and I were sitting on the couch, talking about, well, I can’t say it on the internet because I really don’t need those kinds of hits.  She paused for a moment.

    CL:  Isn’t it SO nice that your husband is upstairs watching our boys?

    What I love most about The Cake Lady?  Other than the fact that she was helping me put ribbon on the 9 million shirts I am taking to the DC International Wine and Food Festival this weekend?  Her naivete. 

    K:  He’s not watching those kids.
    CL:  But he is up there in that room with them.
    K:  And the room is only 10 X 10.  Yet still, shockingly, he has no clue what is going on.
    CL:  You are joking.  What is he doing up there?
    K:  He has his earplugs in and he is listening to some ridiculousness that he purchased online.  Like Animal Farm. 

    As a side note, I asked if he remembered that Animal Farm is like an 80 page book so that it was basically like buying an episode of Dora the Whora, but he said he didn’t realize that until AFTER he listened to all 27 minutes of it.

    CL:  He’s listening to a book?
    K:  And has NO idea what is going on.
    CL:  In that small room?
    K:  With the door closed.

    Not three minutes later, we heard The Husband bounding down the stairs.

    D:  Did you people leave in a nudist colony in California?
    CL:  Oh, no.  Is he naked again?
    D:  They both don’t have any pants on.  They were sitting on the end of the bed so all I could see was from the waist up.  Apparently they took their pants off.
    K:  What did I tell you? 

    The best part. They probably took their pants off 45 minutes before. For what reason? No one knows. Who wants to even go there?

    (oh, and if you are still waiting for all your free stuff I’m supposed to send you from past contests (HI, MELISSA!!), I’m going to send out all that stuff on Friday. You kids are so nice for being so patient!)

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