Don’t Be Creepy

“Yes! You’re right, there’s your leader from day camp last week. Would you like to say ‘hi?”

Superhero socks are the perfect conversation-starter

Socks are the perfect conversation-starter

Off we went so that my outgoing five-year-old could see his leader from the previous week whom he adored.

He got about four feet away and clammed up, barely making eye contact.

“Why don’t you show her your new socks, buddy?” I suggested as a way to break the ice.

He quietly lifted up his leg so she could see his Ironman socks. She feigned the exact right level of enthusiasm, but my little guy was still acting shy. We headed back to our group of friends to continue our conversation.

As we left he piped up, “her voice sounds different.”

“Maybe she has a cold or something.”

A few moments later he was making eyes at her again from behind my legs.

“Would you like to go back over?” I asked.

He nodded.

“Alright, but this time you need to say something to Hollie otherwise it’s just creepy.”

So off we went again and he belted out a hearty “HELLO” and scurried away, giggling nervously (not creepy at all, nicely done).

It was as I trailing behind him that another friend quietly whispered in my ear, “um, that’s not Hollie, it’s Nicole.”

Of course it was, I knew it all along.

No, not creepy at all.


No names have been changed as the only identity needing protection is mine.

Who’s the Biggest Loser Now?

It’s time to face reality: I am not going to magically lose the lingering bit of baby weight. Our youngest is three now, so I’ve definitely given it enough time. I’ve tried all the popular fads: M&Ms Neolithic, The Oreo Fast, The Hershey AND the Cadbury, all for naught. The scale has not budged (in either direction, so there’s that). I’ve accepted this reality and have decided to take control of my health and fitness.

Yes, I’ve tried this before with varying results. I almost killed Bearded Husband with my bare hands when we attempted the P90X regime (and I would have done it, too, if I could have lifted my arms above my waist). Jillian Michaels can go shred herself. And Denise Austin‘s voice makes me sleepy.

That’s why I’ve decided to hire a personal trainer. I think the dividends will be worth it and I have found the perfect candidate.

Wish me luck!


Don't let the loose dress fool you - she's ripped.

I like my role models to demonstrate obtainable goals

Photo courtesy of Man on the Street, TW.

Lunchtime Made Easy

Making lunches is a lot of work.

Well, making lunches, breakfast, and dinner is a lot of work.

Breakfast, lunch, dinner, morning snack, afternoon snack – so much time preparing food. And then there’s the clean up. My knees are developing arthritis from the amount of time I’m spending at the kitchen counter. I might invest in orthotic indoor shoes.

Let’s not even start in about the grocery budget.

So where does every parent go when they are looking for meal ideas for their family? Pinterest, of course. But what I found there was not time-saving lunch ideas. Nooooo. Instead I discovered a cornucopia of pins dedicated to sandwiches cut into fun shapes, fruit kabobs, and smiley faced vegetables. Um, I was looking to do less preparation. Who are these people?

As a public service, I decided to share my own great tips for Easy Lunches On A Budget. Here’s my first instalment.

Easy Mac and Cheese Your Kids Will Love.

1. Get two boxes, you don’t want to run short. Your kids are counting on you.

Two boxes lets them know you really care

Two boxes lets them know you really care

2. Prepare as directed. But why not go with 5% cream? It adds just that hint of decadence your family 1

3. Serve. But not in those plastic bowls from IKEA. The real dishes, mom. Because nothing says “your worth it” like breakable dishware.

photo 4

4. Here’s a secret I debated about posting. But it’s too good not to share. Fresh-ground paper for a gourmet twist.

Just like grandpa used to make when he was left in charge.

Just like Grandpa used to make when he was left in charge.

Future Posts Coming Soon: Frozen Pizza – Not Just for Dinner, Bologna and You, and Sometimes Leftovers Are Your Friend.

Babies Don’t Keep

Before I ever had babies, I saw this sweet poem. Pretty sure it was done in a nice needlepoint tableau and hung above a toilet in my aunt’s home. Wait, no that’s the one about sprinkling when you tinkle. It must have been in the hallway. Maybe you’ve seen it. Maybe you even have a copy of your own.

Cleaning and scrubbing can wait til tomorrow

‘Cause babies grow up, we’ve learned to our sorrow.

So quiet down cobwebs,

Dust go to sleep.

I’m rocking my baby

And babies don’t keep.

You might even find it on a fridge magnet.


Double exclamation points make it more poignant

It’s a nice sentiment. It’s true, babies don’t keep. They change all the time.

You know what else doesn’t keep?




Your veggie drawer

Dairy products

Lunch bags

Bananas (they are a very fickle fruit)

Friends, (see veggie drawer)

Of course, babies are more important than housework, but what if tomorrow never comes? What if you just keep reading that poem every day and heeding its advice? Wait, wait, wait – what if we really did heed this advice?

Can’t scrub the toilets today, rocking my baby.

Nope, sorry, not going to vacuum, this is time I won’t get back. 

Lunches are no longer my department, can’t you see I’m rocking a baby? 

You’ll always be my baby. Hold still, I don’t want to mop.

I’d like to empty the dishwasher, but my baby will never be this age again. Ever. Ok, he’s nine, but he’ll never be nine again. This is precious time, precious I tell you. 

The Dharma Washroom

It was just sitting there, alone, waiting for a friend.

“Hey, look at me so shiny and inviting,” it seemed to whisper to me.

I debated: Should I pick it up? Or leave it? Maybe the real owner might be right back to claim it. Better to leave it. Well, it’s doubtful she is going to miss it any time soon and it’s kind of risky to just leave it perched there.

What’s the moral high road in this situation?

How does one decide what to do?

I want to set a good example for my kids, after all.

What to do, what to do?

“Mommy, I all done!” chirped a little voice, shaking me out of my reverie.

It’s just a quarter on a toilet seat, get a hold of yourself woman. I reached to pick it up and stopped again. Cue the inner dialogue:

It’s on a toilet seat. All money is gross anyways.

Gateway to scrutiny

Gateway to scrutiny

It’s in a public washroom. So?

At a fast food restaurant. Still

Again I reached to pick it up, thinking I’d let my young son pocket it. And then it became clear to me. This was a social experiment. I have a psychology degree, after all, so I am quite familiar with creating artificial situations to find correlations no one really needs to know about. Someone had left the quarter in plain sight on the toilet seat and was waiting for some subject to claim it. Well, it wasn’t going to be me.

This is just like “Lost” but in a public restroom. Did JJ Abrams relocate to Canada? What’s the end game? Will a polar bear jump out suddenly and hand me my fries and pop? Where’s the black smoke? I don’t think I can handle time travel. HOW DO I GET OFF THIS ISLAND?

Before the paranoia had a chance to (fully) set it, I firmly decided that it was best to go home less twenty-five cents, but with my sanity mostly intact. Plus, I wouldn’t want to over think it or anything.

36 Reasons I’m Late for Everything

Once upon a time I was a punctual person. Actually, I mostly still am. Okay, sometimes. Alright, alright, occasionally I arrive on time or even a smidge early. But it’s not my fault. No, really, it’s not.

I have thirty-six reasons to prove my innocence.


36 Reasons I’m Late for Everything

  1. Toddler needs help putting his coat on
  2. His sleeves are bunchy
  3. Decides he doesn’t need his coat
  4. He does need help taking it off
  5. Actually, a coat sounds like a good idea
  6. They’re bunchy again
  7. Zipper won’t go up
  8. Zipper is too high
  9. Too low
  10. Too high
  11. I didn’t let him do it himself
  12. He can’t do it himself
  13. Too low
  14. His socks feel “scrunchy”
  15. His shoes are too loose
  16. Too tight
  17. One is too loose, the other is still too tight
  18. I didn’t let him open the front door
  19. He needs to close it and open it again
  20. Twice
  21. Forgot his water bottle
  22. He doesn’t want to wait outside
  23. He can open the door himself, remember?
  24. He can’t open the door himself
  25. He’s doing the Potty Dance
  26. He denies needing to pee
  27. Still denying…
  28. Under threat of no gum again ever, agrees to use the potty
  29. I didn’t let him “see it” before flushing
  30. Needs to get the soap himself
  31. I didn’t let him open the door. Again.
  32. He can’t do it himself
  33. Actually, he doesn’t need a coat
  34. Forget that, he does
  36. I’m the worst

    Accessories are preschooler kryptonite

    Accessories are preschooler kryptonite

Refrigerated Evil

I was multi-tasking like a pro. Serving lunch, putting away groceries, folding laundry, chopping up veggies for dinner – wait, what happened in the veggie drawer? The slime! The smell!

No problem, for this gal. I rolled up my sleeves, slid another grilled cheese sandwich to the hungry 3-year-old and deftly removed the produce drawers from the fridge.

“Mommy will be right back!” I sang as I carted the oozy vessels of soggy cucumbers and dried out broccoli to the compost bin.

I went to get the little guy a drink and noticed just how grimy the shelves at the bottom of the fridge were. NO PROBLEM! I carefully lifted them out and left them to soak in the laundry tub. Now to tackle the frames. This was turning into a much bigger project than I had anticipated, but I would not be deterred. By now it was nap time so I could really focus on removing all debris and questionable items from the fridge.

I was merciless. An almost empty bottle of ranch dressing – gone! You, too shrimp sauce from 2009. Don’t look at me that way, yeast in a jar, we both know I won’t be baking any bread from scratch.

I’m almost done and then I can watch Veronica Mars while I eat some Oreos start organizing photo books.

This gross, but weirdly satisfying job was wrapping up nicely – all that was left was to replace the various components.

And then, in a flash, my productivity slammed to a halt.

As I pulled open the door to return the bins to their sparkling clean home, the entire fridge door came off in my hand.

It’s the closest thing I’ve ever had to an out-of-body experience. I stood there, gaping at this big, white door that had acquired magical abilities. Or it was demon-possessed.

It’s okay, it’s okay. Let’s just prop it up to keep the cool air in. Then figure out the next step. 

Have you ever tried to lift a fridge door that is full of jars? Trust me, it’s heavy. I leaned it against one leg and carefully took out all the 179 condiments from its shelves (Pilates, guys, it works). Next, I had to rig something up to keep the cool side cool and the hot side hot. I was very motivated since cheese was on sale and it’s possible I had bought approximately eight bars.

Fridge triage

Fridge triage

Things were looking up. Now it was time to figure out what was going on, so I turned to my good friend, Mr. Google. “Why did my fridge door fall off in my hand?” generates a surprising number of helpful answers. I concluded that none of the necessary procedures could be accomplished by one person, so once the boys were in bed that night, Bearded Husband and I fixed the fridge. It took a couple of attempts, possessed refrigerators doors are very temperamental when it comes to things like “alignment”, but we did it.

Stay tuned next week for “The Time 1/3 cup of Butter Exploded in the Microwave” and “Once I Dropped a Pork Roast on the Oven Door.”


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