Snarky Mommy's 5 Fall Faves

Over My Dead Potty book coverToday's guest: Snarky Mommy (Amy Sprenger) Her latest: Over My Dead Potty

The scoop: If your potty training checklist includes training pants, flushable wipes, plastic tarps for covering furniture, a stack of US Weekly magazines and a case of wine, then this is the book for you.

The author of "BABY BUMPS: The Almost, Barely, Not-Quite True Story of Pregnancy, Bed Rest and One Bat Shit Crazy Family" and the award-winning blog "Snarky Mommy," Amy Sprenger is sure to have you howling with laughter and cringing in sympathy as she slogs through the toilet training trenches.

From unsuccessfully convincing her six-week-old baby to pee in a toilet to Cloroxing her own excrement-encrusted leg, Sprenger rolls with the punches and takes readers along for the ride.

Our thoughts: Aside from having the best. title. ever., it's one of the most hilarious books we've read in a while. Be prepared to laugh your ass off!

Giveaway: 2 e-copies. Just leave a comment to be entered to win. We'll select the winners after 12pm PST on Sunday, November

Where you can read more about Snarky Mommy: Her website, Facebook, Pinterest and Twitter.



Ironically, fall reminds me of my pregnancy with my first baby, Jack. In the beginning of October 2006, I had emergency surgery in the 20th week of my pregnancy to sew my cervix shut. My doctor strapped me to my bed for the next four months and I had only my TV and a window for entertainment. The view from my bed for the entire fall was of the tree across the street and I watched as it turned from green to yellow to orange to brown. I still look out that window from time to time, see that tree and am instantly transported back to the horrible fall full of bad daytime television and our never-ending home reconstruction project. Of course, the horrible fall turned into an amazing winter with the full-term birth of our healthy son. (You can read that whole saga in my first novel, Baby Bumps: The Almost, Barely, Not-Quite-True Story of Pregnancy, Bed Rest and One Batshit Crazy Family. )


Nothing says fall quite like apples and I love making (and consuming) apple crisp. My kids also like making (and consuming) apple crisp, which is cute, but takes twice as long and means three times as much clean up.

Here's the recipe how we make it our house:

10 cups all-purpose apples, peeled, cored and sliced
1 cup white sugar
1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
½ cup water
1 cup quick-cooking oats
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 cup packed brown sugar
¼ teaspoon baking powder
¼ teaspoon baking soda
½ cup melted butter
2 children fighting over who is able to stand RIGHTNEXT to Mommy on step-stools
1 child prostrate on floor screaming because she got shoved out of the way when trying to stand RIGHTNEXT to Mommy
1 glass wine (red or white) Directions
: Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degree C). Use nice Mommy voice to remind children not everyone can stand RIGHTNEXT to Mommy and everyone will get a chance. Tell 3-year-old she can not touch the oven; tell 5-year-old if she continues to shove her sister off the stool, she will not get to eat any apple crisp; tell 7-year-old to stop touching his sister.
Place the sliced apples in a 9x13 inch pan. Explain to 7-year-old that while you’re sure his knife skills are excellent, you will not be handing paring knives to anyone under the age of 30. Ask 5-year-old through gritted teeth to stop coughing on the pan of apples. Step over 3-year-old, who is still crying on the floor about the injustice of not standing RIGHTNEXT to Mommy. Mix the white sugar, 1 tablespoon flour and ground cinnamon together, and sprinkle over apples. Try to make sure each child has a turn to put an ingredient in the bowl. Pour water evenly over all ingredients. Pour wine into glass, but do not consume as 3-year-old has to go potty. Admonish the other two sous chefs not to touch anything when 3-year-old insists, “Mommy wipe me!” Physically hold 3-year-old at sink to ensure she washes her hands. Wash your own hands twice for good measure. Return to kitchen and find 5-year-old with her face in the pan of apples “smelling them.” Weigh chances of contamination, but consider them nil after heat of baking.
Combine the oats, 1 cup flour, brown sugar, baking powder, baking soda and melted butter together. Referee resulting fight after 7-year-old grabs the baking powder out of turn. Consume wine in one gulp, then crumble ingredients evenly over the apple mixture. Consult clock and decide it is definitely not too soon for a second glass of wine. Pour another. Calm hysterical 3-year-old down after she claims injustice in amount of helping allowed. Look up to see 5-year-old leaving the bathroom without washing her hands. Physically lead her to the sink and show her where the  soap is kept, because she has clearly never used this bathroom in her life. Wash own hands again because, eww, you were just in the bathroom and who knows what those kids have touched?
Place pan in oven after screaming, “GET AWAY FROM THE OVEN! I HAVE TOLD YOU A MILLION TIMES TO STAY AWAY FROM THE OVEN!” Bake at 350 degrees F (175 degrees C) for about 45 minutes. Consume second glass of wine while listening to children whine, “When will it be ready?” every 15 seconds for 45 minutes. Serve with ice cream to two of three children after one was sent to bed without dessert privileges for punching a sibling in the kidneys. Eat half the pan alone after children have gone to bed.


I recently made the most ridiculously awesome Apple Pie shots for a pub crawl we hosted with friends. The recipe calls for heating a gallon of apple juice and a gallon of apple cider with six cinnamon sticks. Once it reaches a boil, turn off heat and add a bottle of Everclear. Oh yes, Everclear. The whole bottle. We're kicking it college-style up in here. Pour mixture into insulated thermoses and serve as shots. (Please note, when friends ask what is in this toasty deliciousness, smile demurely and claim they're really weak and girly. Your friends will curse you the next morning after consuming multiple shots.)


My favorite fall activity is avoiding the cold. As we live in Chicago, fall goes one of two ways: 80 and sunny or 30 and raining. There is no in between. Last year, I wept with joy one Saturday when I realized my daughter's soccer game was at a field directly next to the parking lot. I sat in the warm car and when she scored a goal, I jumped out and screamed and clapped. After giving her big thumbs up, I got back inside the car. Seriously, there was no reason for us to both stand around in the cold and she was staying warm running around. I sacrificed my nether regions to push this child out, I'm not sacrificing my toes to frostbite in October.


I love to eavesdrop on other people to steal snatches of conversation for works in progress. I'm currently writing my third book, "Yes Mommy" about the month I stopped saying no to my kids. yes, (I am an insane person.) I often write at my local Starbucks and with the weather getting cooler, people spend more time indoors, which results in even more conversations for me to listen in on. Last week I heard one college girl say to another, "He's Czech and Mexcian, so we call him the Czechixan!" if I can't find a way to work that into some upcoming work, I don't deserve to call myself an author.

Thanks, Amy!