Six Reasons Why Summer Sucks…


We are well in to the summer months now, and I don’t know how it is at your house, but here we have pretty much had enough. I am one of those parents that believes summer vacation is far to long for kids (for me), and I am seriously considering circulating a petition to cut it’s length at least in half.

The beginning of summer is always great, full of plans and excitement. The days seem to fly by fast and there are endless amounts of things to do to keep the kids busy, but some time after the 4th of July and into the start of August (the hottest month of course) things seem to fall apart. You slowly begin to hear cries of ‘I’m bored‘ that get louder and more repetitive as days go on. Boredom and chaos seem to take over and your house goes from a happy, relaxing place to a war zone complete with water-guns, and water works.

Yup, it’s true, Summer is not all games and giggles, especially for us parents.

Here are just a few reasons that summer sucks:

  • Summer means no school, which in turn means that there are children everywhere. A once peaceful trip to the grocery store means tears, screams and battles. If you are lucky enough to be able to complete this task without your own kids in tow, you are not necessarily safe from the insanity. There are still other people’s children, and they are often worse than your own. You have to dodge out-of-control toddlers as they run down the aisles and pull cookies off the shelves (this is why some smart mother invented those ‘toddler leash’ contraptions), there are the children screaming that they want a treat, and if your really lucky there are the ones that throw themselves on the ground and kick/scream/hold their breath until they get that said treat. The convenience of  shopping first thing in the morning no longer holds that same peaceful escape, instead you are faced with parents who are walking zombies, delirious from lack of sleep and children who are even more exhausted and hungry for their morning helping of breakfast (a.k.a bowl full of sugar.) Often seen stumbling around the aisles, their children 20 feet behind with a candy bar in their mouths and a scowl on their faces, these parents (and kids) are one of the reasons summer sucks.
  • Summer = extra laundry. Funny thing this is, but it is true for everyone. Although we wear far ‘less‘ clothing in the heat of the simmer months, there always seems to be more laundry to do. Swimming, outdoor adventures and frozen treats mean that hampers all over the world are filling faster. Rising temperatures mean more daily outfit changes and piles of not-actually-dirty-but-thrown-on-the-floor-anyway, clothes that need to be cleaned. Summer means hot weather, hot weather means more laundry, laundry means drying, and we all know how hot the dryer makes the house… Just another one of those reasons that summer sucks.
  • Summer means vacation, and for many families this means travel. Travelling with children, even a short distance, is like trying to round up a pack of wild monkeys. If you are dumb enough crazy enough to attempt to travel by plane with children, you had better be prepared. Long lines, security check-points, and inevitable wait times mean a need for constant entertainment. Travelling by car holds its own obstacles and is no easier than travelling by plane, except the fact that it is less public and you have the option of stepping out of the car, feet securely on the ground. Travel during summer vacation means constant questions of ‘Are we there yet?‘ endless games of eye spy, and sibling battles that have you reaching a arm over the seat to swipe at the nearest child within reach. Travel comes with the guarantee of you saying, at least once, “If you don’t stop that I am going to turn this car around” and will almost surely have you in tears at the realization that you have in fact turned in to your parents. Travel, in some form, is inevitable during the warm weather, and is yet another reason that summer sucks for parents.
  • There is an elevated cost to summer vacation that is unavoidable. Even the most savvy parent feels the strain of summer when it comes to finances. There is the cost of added daycare should you not be lucky enough to get a ‘summer vacation’ from your work, there is added costs of food to fill active children’s stomachs, the cost of clothing for dirty/wet summer play, the added costs of utilities as the sprinkler is constantly on high and the cost of you cooling off the outdoors with your central air as children storm in and out of the house. Summer gets expensive when you add in the travel and the entertainment needs, and it is one more reason that summer seriously sucks for parents. 
  • When the children are home from school and are settling in for the dog days of summer you may find that you have suddenly become a full-time Molly Maid. Water play, and fun outdoors mean dirty foot prints on the floor. Frozen treats, and daily snacks mean finger prints and sticky messes that need to be cleaned. Hand in hand with excess laundry, summer brings an added mess. During the warmer weather months you will find yourself wasting away beautiful days scrubbing the floors or cleaning up arts and crafts that were never completed. Having kids home all-day, everyday, can be very overwhelming and the mess they bring is another reason that summer sucks for parents. 
  • Finally there is the need for constant entertainment. Once the novelty of summer vacation wears off, you will begin to here things like; “I’m Bored”, and “There’s nothing to do” spewing from your children’s mouths. It is at this point that you should panic, pack a bag and call in reinforcements (a.k.a grandparents) because unless you are one of those ‘perky-all-the-time’ parents that I hate, you are in for some trouble. There is no amount off coffee in the world that will better equip you for dealing with a ‘summer bored’ child. Creativity, (and a good hiding place) are your only tools in this battle. You might want to consider stocking up on energy drinks (and ear plugs) if your children are younger, or even moving house so that you are closely connected to a park. (but it better be a good park, one that constantly changes and creates new ways to climb and play. In fact, it should be magical, and have exotic animals that the kids can ride.) Boredom and lack of entertainment are just more reasons that summer sucks for parents. 

These are just a few of the many reasons that Summer sucks for parents there are many more that are not listed here.

Feel free to share your own in the comments section below, and don’t forget all the reasons that summer sucks for kids too(There is the boredom, messed up routine, lack of sleep, lack of gossip, swimming pools filled with piss and lost brain cells. Don’t get me wrong, I love the summer weather, just sans the kids and I’d be great.) 

For another great list of reasons that Summer Sucks check out The Insane Domain. The list posted there is guaranteed to make you giggle, and will probably have you nodding your head at the computer screen like a loser… 

Cheers!

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Lil’ C is Driving Me ‘Crazy’


It feels as if I am constantly complaining about Lil’ C and the things he is doing that drive me nuts. I feel almost guilty because lately it seems as if he is constantly in trouble. Perhaps it is just his age, he recently turned 8, and he is overly annoying lately… I don’t know… My friends 8 year old’s also seem to annoy me as well, but it could just be that I am a bitch??? Who knows… It just feels like every time I turn around I am having to remind Lil C of the most basic things, repeat myself constantly, or tell him to go away every few minutes….

Lil’ C is a good boy. He is gentle and caring, sensitive and loving, but he requires a LOT of attention. He is constantly trying to bud into adult conversations and seems to be stuck in some kind of ‘make believe’ world that us adults truly don’t want to hear about, but he feels he needs to share with us at any given moment… usually the most inappropriate ones at that!!

He is regularly reminded to tidy up, shut-up, or stop chewing with his mouth open and it is starting to drive me ‘CRAZY’ I am at my wit’s end with my little boy and I am about ready to ship him off to tim-buck-two…

I guess I am wondering if anyone else is feeling (or has felt) overwhelmed with their 8 year-old… I keep telling myself it is a phase and it will pass, but I am scared that it isn’t! I worry that he is going to be messed up because he is constantly getting disciplined for stupid little things that I should not have to remind him of daily… It is almost as if he is stuck on stupid… (sorry for the harsh example) but really it is like the lights are on and no one is home!!! You tell him something and it goes in one ear and out the other… like it has never been said before… I am about ready to give up….

Any advice???

10 Secrets of a Successful Summer and Sanity to Spare…


Kids are a joy, a blessing and a real pain-in-the-ass! Made even more the latter during the holiday’s… Yes, I am talking about “summer vacation”. You know those evil 2 months when even the teachers don’t want to be around your little demons, and you are constantly bombarded with various versions of ‘I’m bored‘ day-in-and-day-out non-stop, to the point that you just want to stop, grab the little jerks, shake them and scream at the top of your lungs….

BORED? YOUR BORED? Well MUST BE NICE!!! Perhaps you would like to do the laundry? Make lunch? Make dinner? Mop the floor for the fifteenth time this week? What’s that…? Oh you’re not BORED anymore… Hmmmm…”

or simply pack your bags and leave.

Whatever the case, there are some easy and effective ideas for keeping kids busy during the summer holidays that I want to share. These ideas will not only entertain the kids, but keep you relatively close to sanity as well… (Unless your teetering on the edge to start with, in which case I make no promises!)

The Secret of a  Successful Summer and Some Sanity to Spare:

  1. Summer Camp – Nothing breaks-up the holiday, or fights off insanity, like good old Summer Camp. A week or two of overnight camp for the kids is a great way to keep them entertained, help them lean, grow and experience the world, and enjoy some peace and quiet yourself. Most cities provide ample camp options for parents through over-night ‘away’ camps, or day camp options. If cost is an issue looking into your local resources, most cities have options for camp sponsorship so you can send your children away without much cost on you. Truly though, look at it as an investment and save ahead of time… Trust me it is worth the coin.
  2. Grandma and Grandpa – If camp is not an option consider creating your own escape with the help of family members. Grandma, Grandpa, Aunts and Uncles can be a great resource if available. Plan a mini-vacation for your kids by sending them to see relatives for a week, a month, or even a day. It doesn’t even matter if they life around the corner from you, or across the street, the main goal here is to get them out of the house, and get yourself some alone time. The change of environment, and noise level, will be good for everyone. Contact these people ahead of time… In fact, it is best to bring up such plans close to Christmas when it is hard for people to say no!
  3. Share the Joy – Get together with other parents and arrange ‘summer play dates’ where you each take turns hosting the kids at your house. You may have to put up with a day of extra noisy children, but it will be well worth it when it is another parents turn to host.
  4. Aim for Amusement – Amusement Parks are another great option for keeping kids happy during the long break from school. Check out your local listings for a park nearby and gather the kids up for an outing. Amusement Parks are guaranteed to keep the kids busy for at least one day, if your children are older, and the park is close to home, consider purchasing a seasons pass. Kids never get sick of roller coasters and you will have a few hours to yourself.
  5. Hit the Beach – The local beach, park, pond or river is a great way to get the kids out of your hair and give them something to do. Pack snacks, drinks, sunscreen and a blanket and head for the water. The kids can play and you can relax. Grab a friend or relative and take turns keeping an eye on them at the water so you each get the enjoyment of not having to worry and the kids stay safe.
  6. Lifelong Learning – Sign the kids up for some sort of lessons or sport over the summer. Not only will lessons help promote hobbies and education, they will give you an hour of peace each week. Karate, music lessons, dance, or sports are great options and many are available at low-cost options.
  7. Literally Lounge – The local library is a great resource for parents. Most libraries offer free or low-cost courses, groups and activities for children of all ages. Many of which are ‘parent free’ Check out your local library to see what they offer, in the very least you will have enough time to enjoy a good book and let your mind savor the silence.
  8. Trust Tradition – When we were young summer vacation was spent outdoors. We came in for a quick-lunch and got called in for dinner. Trust tradition and kick the kids outside for the day when you are feeling overwhelmed. Have them ride their bikes, set up a sprinkler, or build a tree-house. Children are often creative, provide them with a few items and let their imaginations run free.
  9. Stock Up – Be prepared for boredom but stocking up on entertaining items. Arts and crafts, movies and board games are great ways to beat boredom or waste away a rainy day. Keep a box, or closet, of useful items handy and point it out when you hear complaints.
  10. Last Resort – If all else fails look to someone else to do the hard work for you. Daycare centers and babysitters should not be forgotten during long summer days. Hire someone, or send the kids off for a few hours each week to help break up the routine. Summer is a great time to hire a sitter as there are many students willing to work for a little pocket-money and daycare centers often provide part-time or casual discounts to tired parents. Let someone else take over and take some time to yourself.

Don’t let the strain of summer stress you out, having children does not have to mean losing your mind. Look for creative ways to keep the kids busy and ask for help when you need it. Chances are your parents remember how hard summer vacation could be and will be more than willing to lend a hand. Most of all enjoy the time summer provides for families, before long your kids won’t want your advice, so plan ahead and make the best of the warm weather.

To Give or Not to Give? Best and Worst Gifts for Teachers


Today was the last day of school for many kids around the world, for some the year is ending tomorrow. Depending on where you live and which school board you deal with, this often means pizza parties and games, summer vacation and family fun, it also means good-bye and, gifts?To give the teacher a gift or not to? That is a question a lot of parents ponder. For many, a teachers gift on the last day is a small way of saying thank-you, showing appreciation, and saying good-bye. Ultimately the choice is yours, this has always been tradition in my household, if you do decide to give a gift to your child‘s teacher there are a few tips you should keep in mind.

The Best and Worst Gifts for Teachers:

Gifts to Avoid Teachers, like all of us love getting presents but after a few years of teaching 20 children per class there are a few things they ‘don’t’ want to be given. Mugs, best teacher ornaments, and framed photo’s of your child are gifts to avoid. Look in any teachers cabinet and I am sure you will find an abundance of mugs declaring that they are #1 Teacher, or Teacher of the Year, mugs are great but 100 mugs are useless and impersonal. If you choose to give a gift at least put in some thought. Homemade or personalized T-Shirts are another gift to avoid, remember there is a large chance that you will get the wrong size, and who actually wears those things anyway… I am willing to bet it will end up on the rack at Goodwill before the summer break is over! More top gifts to avoid; live animals, stuffed animals, candles and liquor… just don’t do it!

Gifts Worth GivingIf you are going to give a gift, be sure you put some thought into it. No one needs 1000 candles, scented soaps or notepad sets, avoid the obvious and be creative. Homemade gifts might seem like a great idea, but teaching a child is different from ‘loving’ a child, your daughters artwork is only precious to ‘you’. Some great gifts to give the teacher include;

  • A charitable donation: avoid re-gifting with the gift of giving Plan Canada has some excellent gift options available that help provide education for under-privileged children around the world. Plan Canada will provide classroom education for one child when you give a donation of $15.00, Library in a Box for $60.00 and many other gift options to help educate children in third-world countries. They give you a printable gift receipt, and the donation can be made in another person’s name. It is a great way to help others and show your child’s teacher that you appreciate what they do. Another great option is to purchase a book for the school library and dedicate it to the teacher you are gifting, this not only shows your appreciation but helps children in the years to come. The school librarian will probably be able to inform you of any books on the school wish list so you can purchase one that they really need.
  • Homemade Options (if you must go there): If you simply must do a homemade gift for financial or other personal reasons, than do it with care. Children’s art work and lopsided bowls should be avoided at all costs, but potted plants and baked goods (if you can actually bake well) are acceptable. If you are opting for a homemade gift keep in mind that you usually don’t know the decor of the person’s home, and they usually have an abundance of artwork from their students already. Keep it simple, yet unique. Baked goods and food work because they are actually usable and can be enjoyed.
  • Create Memories: A great group gift option is a school year scrapbook. Get together with the other parents and put together a scrapbook of the year for the teacher to help the teacher remember the wonderful time she had teaching the students. Get creative, it’s a great way to share memories of the year without the teacher having to always have it on display. Quilting or sewing a blanket full of memories is another great gift option if you have that talent.
  • School Supplies: Teachers are always in need of school supplies for the year ahead. Put together a gift basket full of supplies to get the teacher ahead in the year to come.
  • Gift Certificates: Gift certificates are a great way to show your appreciation when you don’t know the person on a personal level. Restaurant, bookstore and movie certificates will allow the user to purchase what they like most, or simply enjoy a night out over the holiday.
  • Say it with Words: Sometimes the best gift is the most simple words. A card or hand written note thanking the teacher for educating your child can touch a soul and say more than a gift. If you are tight on cash, but want to show you care pick up a card at your local dollar store, or create a hand-written letter telling them you appreciate their work. Teachers don’t ‘expect’ gifts, so any thought at all is going to be appreciated.

Your child’s teacher has worked hard to provide the best education they can throughout the year. Whether you decide to give a gift, or opt not to, a simple Thank-you is always a great way to show you care.

Do you send gifts to the teacher? If so, What kind of gifts do you give?

And You Thought ‘YOU’ Were a Bad Parent….


I had started out writing a list of Tips for a Successful Summer vacation with the kids when I stumbled across the following question posted on a website and I HAD to share it here. This is for all the parents who feel like they are not doing their best at times, all the mothers who question if they are ‘bad’ parents, and all the times that parents have wanted to, or actually did, lose their cool… You are ‘Parent of the Year‘ compared to this:

My wife and I adopted a child in a foreign country over 8 yrs ago. We have been experiencing a lot of problems with this child from her telling us she hates us, her cursing at us, bad behavior at school and at home. Can we give up our parental rights to her even if she is not a legal resident of the U.S.? My wife has serious health problems and I am currently having several emotional problems due to the problems caused by our child.

WTF??? Is this guy serious???

This is not a stray cat, or pet goldfish we are talking about!!!
This is a child!

A child that these people made a conscious choice to bring into their lives, probably after much Consideration. Never mind the fact that international adoption is a difficult procedure that usually requires various complex procedures, interviews, complicated paperwork and a whole lot of cash!!! You don’t just give a child away after “over 8 years” because they are acting out… This couple puts any other ‘bad mother’ (a.k.a Britney Spears, Kate plus 8, and Octa-mom) to shame!

The worst part of this is the fact that; not only was responding closed on this question, meaning I was unable to tell this couple exactly how low and pathetic I thought they were, but the responses that followed were people who were understanding and sympathetic…. WTF is WRONG with ppl???

If I announced the equivalent of this on my Facebook in regards to my child I am almost sure that not only would I have NO friends or contacts left, Child Services would most surely be knocking down my door with hours of my post!

I was horrified when I read this absolutely disgusting question, but I was even more horrified to discover that the issue they are inquiring about happens “all the time”. I learned through some simple research that many children who have been adopted from foreign countries get sent back days, weeks, and even years later!

I heard about one couple that actually put their adopted daughter on a plane back to Russia with a note attached to her jacket. The note simply read: “Here, we don’t want her anymore!”

Something is seriously wrong with people…. This is not Walmart, there is no refund and even Walmart wouldn’t do an exchange after 8 years!!!

I get upset enough when I see ads offering ‘beloved family dog needs a new home. Rufus is 14 years old (or 5, or 9)…’ it’s not right to give away a pet that has been part of your life that long, let alone a child with feelings and emotions.

What did these people think when they made the choice to adopt? Did they think that because the child was from a less prosperous country that she/he would hang on their every word and treat them like Gods??? This child has no idea that they were rescued from bad place, that they were given a chance at a better future. They have no idea that their parents are supposed to be their hero’s. Even if they did know all that, they are children. Children are jerks, they are rude, and bad and they get into trouble. Just like getting a puppy… you have to expect that it is going to piss on your floor a few times at least!

My son rolls his eyes at me, he talks back sometimes, and he just generally pisses me off, that doesn’t mean I am going to ship him back up the old birth canal, or package him up and send him back to the manufacturer… This is not some electronic you got at Best Buy that comes with a lifetime warranty… this is a human being with feelings, thoughts and life….

I don’t know what this couple decided to do. Honestly I hope they did find a way to ‘Get Rid of’ the child (as the post was so compassionately titled) because they don’t deserve to be parents, they don’t deserve much in my books… Sure our kids drive us crazy, and once in a while we all consider sending them off to Timbuktu, but children bring joy, love, honesty, and compassion to our lives. They teach us lessons we would never otherwise learn. They show us the beauty and gift of life, a gift this couple should never have received in the first place!!

Honestly I have NEVER been more disappointed in a parent before, and if this couple ever happens to stumble across this post I hope they read it and feel like the pieces of s**t that they are.

***END RANT***

Technologically Speaking


MSI laptop computer

Image via Wikipedia

I need to be honest, I never ‘actually’ realized how much my life revolves around my computer until recently. Yes, I am aware that I spend a large amount of time online doing “one thing or another” but I what I was not aware of was how much I rely on the internet for entertainment. My computer was out of commission last week and I have to say I was a bit more ‘lost’ than I expected to be. A large amount of my day is spent online, reading, writing, or simply socializing with other. As well as learning many new and interesting things. I expected some withdrawal, of course, but I can honestly say that ‘some‘ withdrawal quickly became an understatement… at least at first anyway. Life (a week and a half)without my computer was hard, but it taught me a few things; things about myself, my life, and the world we live in….

What I didn’t learn online:

  • I am a basket-case without an internet connection – The first few days without a computer were a complete and utter shock to my system. I sat at the desk where my computer had been and simply stared at the empty space that had once held my beloved laptop. I was lost, I admit it, sad as it sounds I truly did not know what to do with myself while not online. Much time was spent simply staring into thin air with the slight hope that somehow, someway, this was all a bad dream. There may even have been a few tears shed…
  • It is very difficult for me to function without Google – I never realized how much I rely on Google to handle my day-to-day issues. There were questions my children asked that I couldn’t answer, phone numbers and addresses that I was unable to find. Dinners that bordered on ‘prison food’ standards from lack of recipes, medical issues and strange symptoms that could not be diagnosed, and a number of other tasks that never got done all because I am a Google whore! Yes, I said it… Loud and proud… I Google EVERYTHING!!
  • I can almost guarantee that I suffer from adult ADHD – I love reading. In fact, most of my time online is spent reading one site or another on various topics of interest, but how often I actually finish reading a site is a question I fear I should not answer… The beauty of the internet is that information is created for fast consumption. I can easily get the point without having to go very in-depth, reading a book on the other hand requires attention that I seem to have lost at some point in the recent past!
  • My kids are quite annoying – When I have nothing to distract me, my children are actually quite annoying to deal with… This ‘in your face, look at me non-sense’ that seems to have started the minute my laptop left the house, was all a bit much for me to be honest with you… and though our ‘family time’ was fun, it was truly exhausting.
  • My house is a mess – Once my eyes adjusted and were able to take in what was around them, (instead of being set to see through the glare of the screen) I realized that my house is a ‘pigsty’ I will say that in the days that the computer I got far more housework accomplished… I wonder if there is a connection!
  • It is really nice outside – Once you get up and get out in the sun, it is actually quite pleasant… Some would even say “Summer-like” but that would be impossible… I mean time couldn’t really pass me by like that now could it???
  • My family is actually amusing – Once I recovered from the initial shock I suppose I actually started to enjoy the disconnection from the world. I spent time with my family, enjoyed the outdoors, read a book (well parts of a book anyway) and even picked up a pen to write.. I can not even remember the last time I wrote with a pen! I learned that my family is actually somewhat amusing at times, and even a bit fun!
  • Boredom makes me miserable – Despite the fact that I got over the computer being gone, despite the fact that I even embraced it being gone by the end, I still learned that when I get bored I become a ‘bitch’. I require constant amusement and no one can provide that like my trusty little laptop…. People have their own emotional needs that just don’t work in my favor!
I must say, though I didn’t like not having a computer, I did appreciate the extra time I had when not online. I used the phone instead of Facebook and actually heard friends voices for the first time in a while. I got a lot done…. And you know, once my computer was back I didn’t even miss it all that much! Now that it is here and I am sitting on it I decided that I would make myself a pact… Though I love my computer and there is soooo.. much on the net that I want to see and read, I also want to enjoy my life, my family and myself… Thus I will not sacrifice time in real-life, for time online!
Take time each day to enjoy the world you live in, learn to appreciate the simple things in life. All that is online will be there later, those that are in your life may not….
– K8 
Cheers!

The Ongoing Outrageousness that is Our Life…


My God, time has been flying by the last few days. With the sun shining bright and the weather getting warmer my life has been an endless outdoor adventure and I have found little time to do much else. Let me update you on the happenings of our household….

With the weather being nice as it has been the last few days have been spent exploring the city we relocated to in January. We have not had a chance to get out and see where we live due to hectic schedules, lack of funds and poor weather, so this last week has been rather enjoyable for me. We have taken to hoping on the subway with no set destination, we choose a subway station to exit at and we set out to explore. This blind travel has taught me many things about the city I now live in. Toronto, Ontario is a ‘huge’ city with a population of over 2.5 million people there is no such thing as silence. It is also a beautiful city to both visit and live in. The thing about Toronto that amazes me the most is the beauty it holds all around it. You can be walking along a busy city street and you simply need to turn a corner to get a “small town” feel. You can wander down quiet residential streets, with tiny shops and friendly people and within moments you can step back into the chaos that is “big city” living… It truly is a diverse place to live. There is a ton of greenery in this city and amazing outdoor adventures and areas to explore. With ample amounts of trails and forests, a thriving beach front, and even a great island (easily accessible by ferry) Toronto is the city of never-ending exploration.. Every time we step out the door we are off on a new adventure. Even when we are tight on fund there is some much for us to see and do here… I am starting to feel like I am home.

Because of these fantastic adventures I have not been able to accomplish much else, blog posts included… Though a lot of interesting things have happened:

We made our first attempt at moving L into a big girl bed… This attempt failed miserably. I have one of those great “convertible” cribs that save you a ton of cash in the long run. This ‘super’ crib converts from a crib to a toddler bed and then to a double bed later down the road. It is a quality piece that usually costs a pretty penny (around $350 Canadian) but the frugal shopper that I am, I managed to score this amazing solid wood crib for $50 bucks!!! In turning it into a toddler bed the process is rather simple, you simply need to remove 4 screws and lift off the lower side. Easy as pie… Now getting your child to adapt to this simple change is often the challenge.. L was ecstatic at first. She was content for hours climbing in and out of her ‘big girl’ bed and even had her nap in it peacefully without an issue. She was even more content when she woke up and realized she could just climb out and come find Mommy and Daddy… which she did, with a big smile on her face! But sometime around 6 O’clock in the evening L decided she wanted nothing to do with this amazing new bed, and fought tooth and nail at bed time… 4 hours and a whole lot of screaming, crying attempts later the rail was (not as easily) placed back on the bed, converting it back into the crib that comforted her to sleep in seconds. Attempt one… unsuccessful! We will try again later in the month.

Besides L and her ongoing antics, Lil’ C has been doing well. I must say I have been a very proud Mama lately with numerous compliments on how well-behaved he is, and his latest school tests which have resulted in all A’s. Yep, I must say I am ecstatic! The funny thing is I was starting to get a big worried about Lil’ C. At 7 (almost 8 years-old) my son was starting to seem a little slow (‘Not the brightest crayon in the box, or a few fries short of a Happy meal, kind of slow) Constantly forgetful Lil’ C lives in Lala land where everything is perfect and the roads are made of chocolate… Every sentence he spoke seemed to get stupider and stupider… until lately, I don’t know he just seems to have matured overnight. Don’t get me wrong, we still have moments when we look at him like a little mad man and wonder “what the hell” he was thinking when he opened his mouth to speak, but those moments are getting to be a lot less common in the recent weeks. We have not had to remind him to brush his teeth once in the last 2 months and all his school work is showing that he is learning well.

I think I am most proud of his marks. Before our recent move to the city, the school had shown worry that he was not learning at an age appropriate pace. This was especially true when it came to his reading, it worried me a lot. Lil C loves to read, and like his Mama he is constantly writing stories, journals, or poems… He has even recently stated that he wants to start his own Blog (Note the huge smile on my face) But up until the move his writing and reading was well below what you would expect from a Grade 2 student… and no amount of help from me seemed to be doing any good. Yet since relocating to the city things seemed to have changed… Lil C’s first math test home from his new school was scary… He managed to get a rather unimpressive 9 out of 43!! I was devastated… In fact I even cried… Until I looked at the test and realized a few things: First the questions on this test were “Hard“… It shocked me to see the complete difference in level between the new city and our old town.. C had never even seen math like this before, let alone attempted to complete it on his own.. and Secondly the answers themselves were only wrong because his numbers were switched around… Now at first this realization was scary… Dyslexia is a very difficult thing for anyone to deal with, but after talking to his teacher and monitoring his writing this was ruled out…

Quickly going over the order of numbers with him and a little practice this issue has been almost totally solved. Back to the first realization I set out to show Lil C how this “big boy” math was done (Thank God for Google… Math has never been my strong suit. They say a person is either good at English or Math, rarely both… English is more my cup of tea.) Once I had shown Lil C the process and basics of this math his little world changed.. You could almost see the light bulb turn on in his head! I won’t lie, It was not fun and games.. I can honestly say that it is a good thing I never became a teacher, because there was swearing, a bit of yelling, and at one point a pencil was broken out of frustration… but he finally got it all figured out…

Since then every Math test that has come home has been adorned with a great big A and a fancy “Good Job” sticker, as have all the other tests that have come home for me to see… Science, Math, Social Studies and Language test are proudly displayed on our fridge.. The $1 incentive for each A he brings home has been a big help (and is also starting to cost me big bucks) 

So Yes I am a Proud Mama at the moment with an amazing Genius little boy. His reading skills have raised by over 16 levels (books are marked by letters or numbers and Lil C has gone up from a 9 to a 30 in the last 2 months… It truly is amazing) and his writing skills are noticeably better now than they have ever been. My brilliant boy is well on his way to becoming an award-winning writer at this rate. The difference is unexplainable, as is my happiness in light of it, I truly am starting to feel like this was a good move.

Lil’ C is also very happy. Most of his days are spent outside playing with all his friends. He has more freedom here in the big city than he ever did in our old town… and he loves our little adventures and all there is to explore.

And so… you now know why I have been slacking. I have had good excuse… But since today is a colder day I figured I would catch you up on our exciting adventures and all the changes we have had… Rest assured that my blog is not the only thing that has suffered… I must end this post now as I have an entire house that desperately needs to be cleaned!!!

Cheers!

Keeping Kids Busy… And Yourself Sane Sans Sunny Days!


Well It’s Cloudy In The Morning Gonna Be Raining In The Afternoon,
If You Don’t Like This Rainy Weather You Better Pack Your Bags And Move,
But If You’re Running From It Brother The Only Road That I Can See,
Is The Road That Leads To Nowhere And Nowhere Is A Fool Like Me…
Save Your Dimes And Nickels Save ’em For A Rainy Day
It Ain’t Gonna Keep The Rain From Coming,
But At Least You Know You’ve Paid Your Way
Rain, Rain, Rain Keep a Falling. – Willie Nelson


It is May 17th, by no mean is it summer yet, that I understand, but I think I was expecting better weather than this… It has been cold damp and rainy here for ‘days’, and I am simply fed up!

I have come to the simple conclusion that Mother Nature is a permanently PMSing BITCH! Just when you think you are safe to pack up the winter clothing she comes at you like a lion attacking its prey…

We have had a glimpse of warmer weather here and there over the recent weeks, and what a teaser that was… Just when I felt the joy of wearing flip-flops and tank tops, the skies turned grey and opened up upon us. For days now I have felt the dampness set into my bones, the cold wind cut at my skin, and the puddles soak through my soles. I hate cold, I hate rain, and I HATE mother nature.

I will admit, rain is much better than snow. If you have lived your life in Canada, (as I have for my entirety) you will gladly accept rain over snow any day… I know this might come as a shock to some, but way up here in the ‘North Country’ we don’t ALWAYS have snow… Nor do we live in igloos with pet penguins, and the impending fear of polar bear attacks lurking over our heads at all times. We don’t all say ‘eh’ and not all of us obsess about hockey…. But that’s another post for another time…

Anyway… This wet weather means that my kids are constantly indoors driving me crazy (well, crazier anyway) and so I decided to share with you my tips and tricks of

10 Things you should have on hand at all times to keep kids busy during bad weather:

  1. Arts and Crafts Supplies – Construction paper, glue, glitter, stickers, and scissors are must haves for any mothers cupboard. Children can entertain themselves for hours given the right tools of trade. Keep these items on hand an easily accessible for rainy days and let their creativity take over. These items can be purchased relatively cheap from your local dollar, or discount, store and kept organized in a large Tupperware bin or container. Check out this list to gather ideas of items to buy.
  2. Board Games – Trouble, Sorry, Monopoly and The Game of Life are all great ways to keep kids entertained indoors. Stock-up on good clean family fun when you see it on sale, and store them in a closet in-case of emergency. There are great games for any age group, and most can be found at your local department store or online for fair prices. If all else fails grab a deck of cards and teach them to play go-fish!
  3. A Few Good Movies – Nothing keeps kids quite on a rainy day like their favorite movie characters. Let them park in front of the television with their PJ’s and pillows and enjoy the piece and quiet it brings. You can purchase or rent DVDs at your local shopping center, or subscribe to Netflix for a small fee, allowing your kids unlimited t.v shows and movies from the comfort of your home, without the trip to the rental center.
  4. Simple Snacks – Be sure you always have simple to prepare snacks on hand. Children tend to eat more when they are bored so help them fill-up on nutritious foods by providing easy to eat snacks like fruit or nuts. Keeping these out on a table or in an easy to open jar will deter them from grabbing at the sugary snacks that are ready-made and generally available on hand.
  5. An Imagination Station – A tickle truck full of dress-up clothes can be a fun and entertaining project for curious children. Put together a box of old clothes in all different sizes and pull it out on a cold indoor day. Be sure you have a camera on hand to capture the cute and creative outfits they come up with.
  6. Books – Encourage reading by having a large selection of books on hand at all times. Select books of different levels and types, factual and fantasy. Having a wide selection will encourage children to read and learn no matter their mood.
  7. Video Games – Despite expert advice, I keep video games on hand for times when I require  peace and quiet. Video games can be a source of entertainment for older children, and an outlet of learning for younger ones. Not all video games are violent and not all of them lead to juvenile delinquency, there are a large assortment of video games available that will aid in your child’s learning and development ,so grab a few from Wal-Mart and let your kids have some fun.
  8. Writing Tools – Having paper and pens on hand for your child to follow in your ‘writing’ footsteps will encourage them to get creative. Children have wild imaginations, once they are old enough to read and write on their own sit them down with a pen and paper and have them write some stories. For younger children, take some time to write their stories out for them… You never know you could have the next best-selling author on your hands!
  9. Educational Toys – Every thing your children do can be a teaching opportunity, be sure you provide your children with toys that will not only entertain them but help to educate them as well. Technology has created ample amounts of educational toys that claim to aid in child development, do a little research and ask around before spending, but find a few that your child likes and allow them to learn and play at the same time.
  10. Other Children – I know what you’re thinking “who the hell wants to deal with more children on a rainy day?” but nothing keeps children entertained like other children. Get together with a girlfriend and make a plan for rainy day play dates, you get to enjoy quality time with grown-up while the kids keep each other amused.

Keeping children amused during this bad weather does not need to be difficult, a stock pile of entertaining items, as well as some creativity can keep children entertained for hours. Stock up your cupboards and curse Mother Nature, but don’t stress about your kids driving you nuts because with these helpful tips you’ve got it covered.

Do you have any tips for keeping kids amused on a rainy day?
Feel free to share them in the comments section, or email submission to:
chasek8@live.ca


I Hate Children….. On ‘Yes, I just said that….’


.Check out this humorous post on parenting:

http://ijusthadtosaythat.blogspot.com/2011/04/i-hate-children.html#

Speaking in Tongues… Momfinitions


Communicating with children can be difficult on a good day. Making the choice to have children means learning an entirely new language, consisting of words that after often made up on a whim. It

means learning sign language, and being creative in your expression and understanding. Parenthood can be related to travel in a foreign country where the simplest communications can become complicated chaos.

ParentsConnect.com posted a great article called Momfinitions that defines some useful words that have yet to make it into the dictionary. You can check out their site here, it is a great place for parents to talk, learn and connect with each other, and it provides you with a good giggle when you need to relax. 

Here are some my favorite Momfinitions from their post, as well as a few of my own. Many of which put a PG spin on some recognizable terms, and all of which are guaranteed to give you a good laugh… (It’s one of those ‘it’s funny cuz it’s true’ kind of moments) 

When you are done giggling, feel free to add your own…..

  • Booty Call – A call from the bathroom letting you know it’s time to go wipe someone’s butt.
  • Sleevekerchief – What you use to catch your child’s snot when there is no tissue around.
  • Diapergami – The secret parenting fold that turn a nasty diaper into a tidy package ready for the trash.
  • Keything Ring – What your key ring becomes in a teething pain emergency at the grocery store.
  • Boobifier – The act of using one’s boob as a pacifier.
  • Wuice – The watered-down juice at the bottom of your child’s sippy cup after you have refilled it throughout the day.
  • Unhappy Hour – The hour between 5 and 6 pm when every mother in America is desperately trying to entertain whiny, hungry children while simultaneously fixing dinner and tidying the house.
  • Peemergency – That moment, after you have loaded 10 bags of groceries and 3 kids into the car and just got on the highway, when your child announces that he has to go potty. Right. That. Instant!
  • Invisaowie – An owie so small that you can’t even see it, but it still requires a band-aid in order to stop the crying.
  • Snooze Control – The act of handing your child the remote control so they can tune to Nick Jr allowing your to get a few more mins sleep.
  • Toppler – A topless toddler, usually the result of an unprepared mother forgetting to bring along a change of clothes.
  • Boy-o-sphere – That strange, stuffy, puppy-breath kind of smell that permeates in a boy’s room, especially after they have had their door closed all day. Is it the laundry? Their shoes? You can’t quite place where it’s coming from, but you’ll know it when you smell it.
  • For Flying Peter Pans – A saying you use instead of profanity, when in the presence of small children.
  • Pootie – A pouty little baby face.
  • Peed Racer – What a dad becomes when he realizes there is a dirty diaper to be changed.
  • Peenial – A child’s denial of their need to urinate.
  • Thumb-dumb – The moment you realize, that unlike a pacifier, you can not take a thumb away.
  • Pundeled – The inevitable fact that as soon as you have your child fully dressed in their winter gear they will have to go to the potty.
  • Auto Re-say – The need to constantly repeat everything you say at least 12 times a day.
  • Dead-time – That glorious moment when you actually believe your child has fallen asleep without a fight, only to hear the pitter-patter of little feet along the floor.
  • Tubby-tears – A phase that all children seem to go through where they scream and cry in the bath tub.
  • Waddle Feet – Letting your child walk around with his shoes on the wrong feet because it’s easier than the fight it will take to change them.
  • Slug Hug – When your toddler hugs your leg and wipes her nose on it at the same time.
  • Snop – The snotty, slimy back wash left on your cup after your toddler takes a sip of your drink.
  • Ca-moon-a-K-shun – Your toddlers inability to clearly pronounce words, making everything sound cute.
  • Know-it-doll – A little girl who seems to have all the answers.
  • Sleaky – That awful moment when you realize your baby’s diaper has failed you.
  • Rottle – A bottle that has been hidden under the couch for an unknown length of time.
  • Entertelement – One of those days when you ignore all limits and simply use the television as a tool for amusement.
  • Mom-over – The art of making yourself look normal for a night out without the kids.
  • Wondry -Wondering when the last time you wore clean clothes was.
  • Shower-Power – A mothers amazing ability to shower, get dressed and be ready to go in a matter of minutes.
  • Snare – That look that you get just before your child throws a temper tantrum in the middle of Walmart.
  • History – Reading, and re-reading, the same bedtime story every night for 3 months straight.

 Special thanks to: ParentConnect.com for such a humorous post on parenting.