Thursday, May 28, 2009


As a mom, I feel like most of my life is spent preparing, serving, and then cleaning up meals. Breakfast, snack, lunch, snack, dinner, and possible bedtime snack. It never ends!!
When I was a kid, I didn't get snacks. We ate dinner at 5:00pm precisely, therefore, an after-school snack wasn't necessary. Yes, we were starving by the time we ate dinner, but that's the point, isn't it? Then you actually eat what you're supposed to! Of course, during school we had a small snack at recess time, an apple, or a cookie, and in the summer, I'm sure we must have had a snack in the mid-afternoon, although it was almost always a piece of fruit, or a fruit-juice popsicle.
But I NEVER had to have a morning snack, or a bedtime snack. It was my mother's thinking that if we were still hungry at bedtime, that's too bad, we should have eaten our dinner!
Why is it that kids these days have to eat constantly? I never even heard of a morning snack until I started into my career in childcare.
As a home childcare provider now, I feel obliged to give the kids these snacks, but I know that if it were my own child home alone, we wouldn't be having them. On the weekends, the only reason we might have a snack is if the meal time is going to be delayed for some reason. I will confess that sometimes, I don't give the kids a snack at all (the ones I look after). They are busy playing, having fun, and it gets past the usual snacktime. Then I figure, oh well, maybe they'll all have hungry tummys for dinner tonight. I think a lot of it has to do with poor planning on the parents' part (not planning enough to have a meal ready in short time when arriving home from work) and also the fact that most parents give in to their children too much these days. They are afraid to say no, and have to listen to whining. Especially when it comes to food. Who wouldn't want a yummy chocolate chip granola bar instead of waiting 20 more minutes for a plate full of healthy meat and veg?
I've learned that yes, young children need food more frequently, as I look after a variety of ages. But as they get older, I don't think they need as much. I know this totally goes against what all the dieticians say - more frequent, smaller meals is best - and I don't want anyone to think I'm offering advice, just my opinion. I don't even expect anyone to agree with it, it's just something I needed to say.
That being said, I really think that we should all be giving up the granola bars and crackers and going for the fruit and vegs instead. And I also think that we shouldn't be giving kids a snack simply because it's scheduled in. There is something gratifying in feeling true hunger, and waiting a few more minutes to tuck into a satisfying, healthy meal. Shouldn't we be teaching our kids that? Not calling kids away from their activities to snack around the clock. It's no wonder childhood obesity rates are rising.

Friday, May 22, 2009

Wedding Attire

I think I complained a wee bit too much. Once again, stupid Canadian weather changes its mind. Today it is freezing. Back to pants and sweaters and a jacket weather. Sheesh.

Today we are gearing up for our big weekend. My little sis is getting married!! It's so exciting! The boys are in the wedding as ring bearers, as well as my niece, M (2.5 yrs). My sis has been so great about everything. I thought she would be a bridezilla, but she SOOO has NOT been! She let us pick whatever we wanted to wear, which is going to be pants and a top if you can believe it. My other sis is 8 mos preggo, and was absolutely not going to be caught dead in a dress or even a skirt. So we picked pants, and tried to match as best as we could considering one of us is wearing maternity wear.

Here is the shirt and pants the boys are wearing from Gymboree. They are also wearing a cute pink tie but I couldn't find a picture of it on the Gymboree website.
Keep your fingers crossed for good weather for us tomorrow!

Thursday, May 21, 2009


I don't want to complain too much about the heat, but seriously, it's hot! I don't understand our stupid, effed-up Canadian weather! Two days ago we were all freezing, and now we're boiling! No wonder we're all sick all the time; no one's body can get used to that!

But we did have such a long winter, so I am trying to just enjoy being sticky and sweaty for once. And there are some advantages. The house was so hot last night (as I'm far too cheap to turn on the A/C in May!) that hubby and I played Wii bowling in our undies. Lucky I don't post pictures, eh? You can all imagine us as two gorgeous Calvin Klein-esque models, hee hee...

And then there is the other advantage... the kids and I all get to wear our new summer clothes finally! Isn't that a great feeling, putting on brand new clothes? Seeing yourself (or your kids) in something you've never worn before, unlike those damn winter clothes you've worn a THOUSAND times over! And the laundry piles get smaller too, with less clothing being worn, and less bulky at that.

Ahhhh, summer...

Tuesday, May 19, 2009


This weekend, we purchased a Nintendo Wii system. I finally gave in. I always wanted to be one of those parents that didn't let their kids have a gaming system until they were teens, due to the rise in childhood obesity. But I gave up. And in all fairness, the Wii has more physically active games, which is part of why I bought it. I have also secretly wanted one for myself anyway for quite some time now.

I plan on getting the Wii fit at some point. It scares me when I do any kind of physical activity just how out of shape I am. When I first started taking the kids to school in the mornings as well as the afternoons, I was exhausted. And it's only a ten minute walk. Now that is very sad. Of course, I console myself by saying that not everyone has to mind 9 children at the same time, so part of the exhaustion is stress.

But when I run, I almost always hurt my ankle (it twists somehow). And the feeling of the fat all over my body flopping up and down is disgusting. Then there is the part that scares me the most - my heart. Sometimes it seems to speed up, and skip beats. It's hard to describe. I had it checked out about a year ago, by having an ECG and also wearing a Holter Moniter for 48 hours. Nothing was found, and the doctor said that lots of people have it, and it generally isn't dangerous.

But still, it scares me, especially since during times when I'm straining myself (like pulling a very full wagon of three toddlers up a steep hill) it becomes worse.

So, time to get into shape. Several hundreds of dollars later, sigh...

Friday, May 15, 2009

What's That Smell?

For days now, every time I go into the laundry room, I have been assaulted by this dirty, earthy, smell. It has been getting somewhat stronger as the days go on. At first, I thought it was the dog food (this is where Vader eats), and I cleaned his food mat under his bowl to no effect. I even went as far as to stick my head into the food bag to take a deep whiff. But that wasn't the smell I was smelling.

Of course, when I mentioned it to DH, he doesn't smell anything. He thinks I have a supersonic nose; I'm ALWAYS smelling things he doesn't. But even he has to admit that my over-active sense of smell has come in handy, especially when it comes to car diagnostics.

So my quest continued. I went and got a step stool to stand on and look over the washing machine to look behind it, but all that revealed was my affirmation that I'm a very bad housekeeper (the dust bunnies and lint was unbelievable, but, who needs to see back there anyway?).

I washed every lingering article of clothing and towel that collect on the laundry room floor (how do these get there anyway? - it's like a fungus that keeps growing back, this pile, even after you think you've got it all.) But still, the smell remained.
I smelled inside the washing machine, because sometimes if you don't leave the door open to let the moisture dry up, it starts to stink (I have a front loader). But the washer smelled like detergent.

FINALLY, I think I've figured it out! This smell, this stench. Above the dryer, is the vent for the fan. I've never quite understood what exactly the reason is for putting an exhaust fan in a laundry room, but it has actually come in handy on those days when I've had to lock the wet dog in there. Inside the outside portal for the exhaust vent, lives a family of birds. They nest in there every year, due to the broken flap on the outside of the house. They've recently had babies, as I've seen the mom bringing worms in and heard the little peeps. Cute, I thought. Now I think otherwise.

STINKY!! It must be them, as the smell can't be pinpointed to an exact location (I'm like a hound dog), and seems to be in the general area around the dryer.

So now I can't wait for these guys to grow up and move out, and next year we will definitely be putting up some sort of barricade.

For now, I guess I'll leave the fan on. OH! So that's what they're for! :)


I have fought many a fight over guns. I don't like them. I am one of those moms who doesn't want her children to have guns as toys. However, it seems that all my efforts are for nought. It doesn't seem to matter what you do, but it is nearly impossible to keep your children from playing with guns, especially boys.
"Mommy, can I pleeeeeeaaaaaaase have a gun; I won't shoot anyone, I promise!" L begs me in the dollar store.
"Pleeeeeeeeeeease; J (his best bud) has one, and H too!"
"Ohhhh, that's not fair!"
Life's tough kid.
I was careful when the two boys were younger to stick to cute animal animated movies, with loving themes. They only watched Treehouse (the preschool channel) and programming for preschoolers, and even that was limited. But lo and behold, they still were introduced to "shooting" people. Then came the guns made out of Lego, or even a stick outside was used as a gun. My wonderful SIL bought L a giant Transformer Optimus Prime that transforms into a giant gun that shoots foam darts. Thanks. So much. For that.
Next year she bought him a Batman plane that shoots out red plastic discs, and is held like a gun, trigger and all. She smiles sweetly at me, and tries to justify it all. Of course, once they open the gift, you can't be that terrible mean mother who takes it immediately away.
And then came the squirt guns, and super soakers. So it's inevitable, I should stop fighting, I'm losing. Maybe I'll go out tonight and buy them a bazooka and have done with it.

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Evil Mother

Sometimes, I'm a really bad mom. Did you ever have a time when you just want to laugh at (not with) your kids and poke fun at them, even provoke them a little? This evil little part of you creeps to the surface and rears it's ugly head; you know, that part that's about 6 years old??? Sometimes I just have to let it out, I can't help it. I think when you go a little mentally insane temporarily, it helps to keep that from being a permanent condition.
Anyhow, we were walking back from our morning school drop-off, and L was riding his bike. He still has training wheels, and while maybe about 50% of boys his age don't, I'm not in any hurry to take them off for him. That would be a huge lesson in frustration (both his and mine from having to hear him scream, he is NOT a persistent, go-getter-keep-at-it-till-ya-drop type of kid). So instead, I raised them up about as high as they'll go, so that he teeters from one side to the other, and hopefully, learns to balance in the middle without too many accidents. He's been doing really well, but for some reason this morning, and only on the way back from school, he started to struggle. He began to fight the bike, first leaning one way, reefing on the handlebars to straighten up, then the other way. The more he fought, the worse it got, till it looked like he was riding sideways, leaning waaaaaaayyy over to one side. It looked ridiculous. and he became more and more frustrated, starting to whine and cry and curse and swear (well, in his own limited swearing vocabulary, thank god - "STUPID BIKE" "I HATE THIS DUMB THING!!")
I, on the other hand, was walking behind him becoming more and more annoyed at him because why the hell can't he ride the damn thing like he did five minutes ago? What is his problem? Just ride the effing thing like a normal kid, and stop being such a wimp!!
Then I lost it. It was either this, or start screaming at him till I ended up taking the bike away indefinitely. I started to laugh. He just was so ridiculous. And I know it was mean, and wasn't helping matters, but I couldn't stop. It wasn't a quiet giggle either, it was a loud, maniacal laugh; so much so, that the other kids were looking at me like, "What is this woman's problem?"
Thank God there were no other parents around. Who knows what they would think. Probably that a white unmarked van was about to show up out of which would hop two guys in jumpsuits toting a stretcher.
To top it off, when he burst into tears at his mother's unbelievable cruelty, I walked away from him saying, "See you later, L." Poor child. It will be a miracle if he doesn't end up in therapy.

Monday, May 11, 2009

Misconstrued Comments

I figured it was time for a new post. I wish somehow that I could take my computer with me, and write the random thoughts that come to my mind. Sometimes I compose blogs in my head, as I'm doing the dishes, or walking the kids to school, or putting the laundry away. But of course, by the time I get around to going onto the computer, logging on, etc, I forget what it was I wanted to write.
But today, I remembered something. I wanted to write down some funny things the kids said. I'm sure most of you won't find them funny like I did, and I guess you had to be there, or know my kids anyhow, but I at least want to write them down for myself so I can look back on them.
So yesterday we went to the library. L had brought his toy stuffed Koala with him, and we were discussing this fact jokingly. DH had said, no Koalas, no Cows allowed (R's favourite cuddly toy) and continued on with the no shirt, no shoes no service spiel:
DH: ".....and no bare feet in the library"
R: Completely seriously" Yeah, L, if you have the feet of a bear, you can't go in the library"
Us: "Bwahaha hahahaha!!"
The other thing took place in the bathtub. The boys were in there for their Sunday night cleanse, and I was in the bedroom sorting laundry (yes, I was bathing the children AND sorting laundry on Mother's Day; but that's a topic for another blog). I overheard one of them humming that song "Love Game" by Lady GaGa. You know, the one that goes something like this; "...I wanna take a ride on your disco stick. Let's play a love game...."
R:"Mommy, what's a disco stick?"
Me: Really I don't know, but I have a general idea of what the song is infering. So I went into the bathroom to answer. "I have no idea! What do you think it is?"
R: "I don't know."
L: " I know!! It's one of those pogo sticks, that you jump on, with a disco ball on the end of it!"
Hmmmmm, pretty creative thinking for a five-year-old.
R: "Nooo!!! That's not it!"
L: "Yes it is!!"
R: "No it's not!!"
You get the idea. After a few minutes, and I had left the room:
R: "You know like those guys that dance, with a stick, and a hat?" HUH???No idea. " Well, maybe it's that stick, but then, how would you ride on it? And why would you want to?"
Me: laughing quietly to myself in the other room, imagination running wild. I wonder constantly about when is a good time to bring up sex. He is 7.5 now. He is also a smart kid. I definitely don't want him to get the wrong ideas about it like I did from kids at school. When that first conversation comes up with his buds, I want him to know that that is wrong, or this is right already, and not be left out of the loop. But, I also don't want to kill his innocense. I've always just kind of waited for the questions, knowing that I would probably be the one he queried, and that I would answer as honestly and simply as possible. So when would I expect to get these questions? By all means, I am not looking forward to them, I just don't want him to be the last one to know either. Hmmm...