Monthly Archives: June 2012

Excitement All Around

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In my post earlier, we had received the Princess’ Kindergarten package today.  She was already at daycare when we got them so I didn’t have the chance to tell her.  I called Hubby on my lunch and we decided that we were going to take her out to dinner and tell her then.  When we told her she was shouting at the top of her lungs.  She was telling the waitress and anyone who would listen.  But the one thing she could not let go of was her want and need of a backpack.  Nevermind the wealth of knowledge she would be acquiring or the friends she would play with, it was the backpack.  She was quite clear that she wants a pink princess one and she wants us to get it as soon as possible.  I am so glad that she is excited for school, it makes me feel better for putting her in.

A New Milestone

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My little Princess

Our family reached a new milestone today.  We received our Welcome Package to Junior Kindergarten this morning and as of September, Princess will be in full-day school.  While I am so proud and excited for her, I’m also sad.  My baby is growing up before my eyes and I just want to hold her and hug her and tell her how much I love her.  In the short 3 1/2 years since the day she was born,

I have been there for her first poop, step, word, doctor’s appointment, boo boo, vacation, laugh, sentence, and nightmare.  I birthed her from my body, nursed her at my breast, rocked her in my arms, wiped away her tears and now I will have to let go of her hand as she goes to school.

I am so very proud of the little girl she has grown into.  She is very much the light and joy in me and her father’s lives, and we are so thankful to have her.  After everything we have come through in the last 3 years, I don’t know if we could have done it without her smile, voice and presence.  She took 2 twenty-something’s and turned us into parents, adults, and better people.  While I am crying whilst writing this before leaving for work, they are not just tears of sadness, but tears of joy.  My baby is now a big girl.

My Big Girl

Tell Me About Yourself Award

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I’ve been so graciously nominated by a fellow blogger, Lydia, for the Tell Me About Yourself Award.  I want to thank her so very much for nominating me and frequenting my blog as I thoroughly enjoy her’s.  Here are a few tidbits about me and then the 10 blogs that I have nominated.

 

 

 

  1. I love ketchup.  Gross I know, but it is by far my favourite condiment.  I have it on almost everything.  My parents will gladly tell anyone who asks how much ketchup I would consume as a child.  Hubby will tell you how much I consume now!
  2. I have over 200 books in my house.  I love literature and all its glory.  My Nan had a small library and everytime I would go to her house, I would sit and stare at it.  I would run my fingers over the spines of the book and read them.
  3. My favourite music is classic rock.  Give me some Bob Segar, Queen, Joan Jett, Meatloaf and CCR and you will see me bust a move.
  4. Malificent from Sleeping Beauty used to give me the worst nightmares as a child.
  5. My favourite movie is The Rocky Horror Show and as a kid I always wanted to be Columbia,  maybe it was my childhood crush on Meatloaf.
  6. I used to be in 4-H and showed dairy cattle at local fairs.  My first calf was named Rush Hour Rachel.
  7. I’m a Daddy’s girl through and through.  We even have our own handshake.
  8. My nose has been broken twice and I cannot stand to have it touched.
  9. I have a tattoo on my bottom that I did as a competition with a good friend when we were looking for a townhouse during our second year of university.  We super sized our MacDonalds meals, each ate 2 tubs of Ben & Jerry’s Ice Cream and got matching tattoo’s on the fluke on our butt’s.
  10. My husband and I have nicknames for each other, Muffin (him) and Cupcake (me). It started out as how we hate nicknames.

Here are the blogs that I nominate, and they are in no particular order.

“Do you not like to support your community?”

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This is what I was asked by a young man on Bloor Street while I was trying to get home after work.  He was no older than 21, mohawked, pimpled and wearing superman shorts, he jogged up to me carrying a file folder.

“Just so you know, we’re going to talk,” he smiles.  Oh no, I really just want to get home, however because I worked as a telemarketer in my university days, I agree to at least listen.

“Okay.”

“Do you sponsor a child?” he asks nonchalantly.  I think to myself, does my own count?

“No I don’t.”

“Have you ever considered it?”

“Not overly.”

“Do you know someone who does?” I nod as I do.  I think at this point he is beginning to sense that this is a dead on, but he is optimistic.

“Did you know for only $1 a day, you can provide a child in Peru with housing, food and an education?  That is less than daily ATM fees.”  I argue with him that my hesitation to sponsor a child is from first hand accounts I’ve heard from people I know that work for these kind of companies that a large portion of the money goes to the business and not these kids in need.  His face grows stern and his pessimism grows.

“Do you not like to support your community?  I bet you don’t even donate to charity. It’s really not that expensive, you could afford it.”

I explain to him that yes, I do like to support my community, however, contrary to his belief, Peru is not my community.  Toronto and Canada are my communities.  I also contribute to charities.  I am a firm supporter of child literacy programs, local food banks and shelters.  This past weekend, I donated over 10 garbage sized bags of clothes and shoes to a local clothing drive in Toronto.  I had 42 diaper boxes of girl’s clothes that I had saved from when the Princess was born and of those 42, I kept a tote of clothes for any future children I may have and have 17 boxes left to give to friends and family that already have or are having girls.  The rest, on top of clothes that Hubby and I no longer wore, went to clothing my fellow Canadians and Torontonians.

“C’mon,” he argued.  “It’s not that expensive.”

I explain that I cannot consent to this right here and now as this concerns money, and I must consult with my Hubby.  I don’t need to ask his permission, but as this is a financial decision, it has to be a mutual one.  He had enough and walked away from me sighing, but then smiles quickly as he sees the next person walking down the street.

I don’t want to put out the impression that I do not care for the starving children in the world, because I do.  As a parent, it’s almost impossible for me not to.  However, I have a child that requires me to feed her, and clothe her, and house her, and provide for her.  My own government won’t assist my financially, let alone people from other countries.  She is my responsibility, those children are not.  It makes my heart ache to see them on the TV, with their bellies swollen from kwashiorkor, flies swarming around their mouths and the squalor they live in.  If I had the resources to feed all the children and provide for them, I really would.  But I cannot justify giving money to care for another child when I have my own to care for.  Some of you may be thinking, “It’s only a $1 a day.”  You are absolutely right, it’s only $352 a year.  But that is roughly 2 weeks of childcare, less than a month’s worth of groceries, 4 month’s worth of Hydro, and/or transportation costs for our family for a month.

I would also like to point out that there are children in Canada and the United States that do not get enough to eat, or have daily access to housing or running water.  Abuse and neglect are still rampant, drug abuse and violence are an everyday occurrence, and in some northern parts of Canada, the suicide rate is 11% higher than the national Canadian average.  To me, those are issues that are closer to my heart than those in other countries.   I cannot help everyone in the world, no matter how much I would love to, but I can help some people.  I just choose to help my community.  A motto I follow is “In order to help others, you must first help yourself.”  I once explained this to someone who didn’t quite understand my point of view.  I argued that in most life-threatening situations, they always tell you to put the oxygen mask on yourself before helping the person next to you.  You can’t help someone if you are endangered yourself.  The same can be said in this situation.  So to the young man who approached me, let me say this;  Your selling techniques need work, and just because I didn’t sponsor a child, I’m not a bad person.

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Studio Mothers: Life & Art

Sometimes creative angst gets the better of us. How often do you find yourself thinking “I don’t have enough time,” or “My work’s not good enough,” or “I’ll never reach my creative goals”? Here are four simple ways to avoid those minefields and stay focused on what really matters: your creative work.

1. Turn rejection into affirmation. With practice, you can reframe rejection so that it actually affirms your creativity, rather than causes injury. Here’s how. Simply put, you can’t get rejected if you haven’t had the courage to send your work out into the world. And you can’t send your work out into the world if you haven’t reached a level of completion and polish that makes you believe your work has legs. And your work can’t have legs if you haven’t put yourself at your desk or easel or studio bench and actually done the work, for however…

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Swift Justice indeed!

Jill of All Trades...Expert of None!

Wow, I heard about this story yesterday and had to go out and see what I could find on it.  I believe this is the first time I’ve heard of a case like this, where the guilty party was relieved of the potential legal charges so early in the process. This is justice at work, in my opinion.  They checked the 911 tapes, they examined the daughter, and they talked with other people to gauge the Dad’s character.  Of course he was enraged when he found a man raping his 5 year old daughter…of course he completely lost it and attacked the man to save his daughter…

What do you think?  Swift justice or hasty decision?

This is the story, written by Nina Rai on 20 June 2012 in San Antonio, TX.

An enraged Texas dad, who found his five-year-old daughter being raped from behind a barn, rushed there and pummeled…

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My Child’s Culinary Journey

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Enjoying Dinner

Enjoying Dinner

The thought of feeding children sends some adults running and screaming for the hills. Between flat out refusing some food items or throwing temper tantrums, meal time can be a handful. The Princess has had her ups and downs, but her culinary journey is an interesting one.
I was born and raised on meat and potatoes. My Dad hated what he called “freaky food” which basically encompassed anything besides beef, chicken and the vegetables we grew in our own garden. Latin, Asian, and European foods were out of the question. It wasn’t until I went off to university that I was able to begin my food journey, albeit late and hindered slightly by my own trepidations.
My Hubby however is Italian and Polish and his Italian Nonna could cook with the best of them. I had to step up my game. To impress him when we first started dating, I went out on a limb and cooked lasagna from scratch for the first time. What a better way to impress and Italian with Italian food?
When the Princess arrived, I was determined that she would try all foods, at least once. But her food journey started before she drew her first breath. I hate pickles. I mean loathe pickles, however when I was pregnant, I would easily eat a jar a weekend. Then I craved peanut butter and jelly sandwiches and then macaroni salads. I did have a complete aversion though. Eggs. I loved them before I was pregnant, but from conception on, I was repulsed by the look, smell and taste. Watching people eat them would send me running for the bathroom. I still cannot eat them and neither can the Princess.
From the moment she started solids, she could eat! Almost anything you put in front of her, she would gulp down with gusto. Whether it was Fajita bean soup or oranges she dipped in Tzaziki (it tasted delicious to her), she showed no fear of food. When we go to restaurants, she is always willing to sample off people’s plates. She has eaten Veal Carpacchio and Grilled Octopus and Squid, water chestnuts and Pad Thai. I’ve only ever had water chestnuts!
We recently went out for Thai food for Father’s Day and the Princess ate up her spring rolls and Chicken Asparagus. I have to say I’m so happy that she isn’t a picky eater, but I cannot take the credit for this, her Daddy gets the pat on the back for this one.

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Eagle-Eyed Editor

I’ve got to hand it to English — it’s a democratic language. It uses words from all over the world and from different eras. It grows constantly, because new words are added all the time.

The origin of some words is pretty obvious. Judo, karate, kimono and tsunami come from Japan, while Germany gave us noodle, nix, snorkel and spiel. France offered us ballet, garage, liberty, pleasure and marriage. From the Caribbean, we’ve taken hurricane, barbecue, canoe, hammock and mosquito. (I’m not a big fan of mosquitoes — can we give those back?)

I always think it’s interesting to know the origins of words and commonly used phrases. Ever heard of the word defenestration? This word is guaranteed to stump almost everyone since it’s so obscure, and it’s hilarious to hear people try to guess the…

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