Showing posts from November, 2019

Last Day

It's the last day of my self-styled NaBloPoMo and I have no triumphant final thoughts - I almost just went to bed without posting, and it's already after midnight. I finally slept a good chunk last night, so that was good, and had a lazy day with Eve and then went to see Frozen II with Eve's friend and her mom (a badass bitch who sobbed her heart out). Matt drove Angus back to Elmira a day early because there's supposed to be bad weather tomorrow, instead of going to get a Christmas tree with him, so that sucked a little, but he'll be home for Christmas in a couple of weeks. Thanks, as always to everyone who commented - happily surprised to see some new names, happily happy to see the old(er) ones. It's nice that some people have said "could you maybe SLOW THE FUCK DOWN with the blog posts, I can't keep up" instead of "geez, it's been a while, have you forgotten how to write or are you just choosing not to?" (I had the most overwhel

Now I Have to Sleep for the Rest of the Week-end

I hate going out on Friday nights. Friday nights are for jammies and fuzzy socks and reading in my reading chair. I hate crowds. Going to a crowded place on a Friday night is kind of my idea of Hell manifested on Earth. Buuuut, I love my daughter, and her crazy Greek friend and her friend's crazy Greek mother and the other crazy friends, and we haven't had a madcap adventure together for a few weeks, so I agreed to go downtown to the Lansdowne Tree Lighting tonight which, if I haven't been clear enough about it yet, is Friday. It helped that the the crazy Greek lady volunteered to drive my van (which is required to transport our many children and children-adjacent people). It was pretty much a magical freaking wonderland. It was also really freaking cold. Don't tell Eve, who is still trying to thaw out her toes, but I kind of felt like it was perfect that way - it wouldn't have felt as quintessentially wintery and wonder-ish if it was warmer. There was a

Day 28

I am not surly today, just tired. Angus and Matt and I went over to my mom and dad's and ate Chinese food with them. I tried to go do my information picketing thing this afternoon but there was nobody there and then there was an email with more precise times and this is all kind of a clusterfuck and now we're doing a withdrawal of services next Wednesday which is one of only two days I work, which kind of sucks, but I support the teachers and fuck Doug Ford. I know I said that already, it bears repeating. I feel like everybody has probably seen this already, but if you haven't, it is the purest thing. Angus and I have been playing it repeatedly and giggling like fools all day. There's already a shirt. I've got nothing else. I've been trying to get through one book for the last week and a half because I keep staying up too late and then falling asleep when I try to read, so I'm going to try to go to bed early. I'll let you know how that went tomorr

Colours. Oranges. Last Christmas. Insomnia. Gay Mermen.

Wow, talk of paint colours really brings the commenters to the yard! I saw Nicole 's living room again in her festive post and I think her terra cotta works a little better than mine because it's a little more muted and it goes with that brick part, whereas mine goes into the entrance which I meant to be painted a sort of soft sage but it ended up E ast Nepean green , which was appropriate to Angus's early baseball career but a little too IN YOUR FACE GREEN for a wall.  I put two of the oranges in my lunch today. One was passable and one was excellent. I feel like I have dodged the First Box Curse reasonably adeptly this year. It is a rainy, crappy day. It never really got light, and leaving school after my shift I felt like I was in a horror movie where some kind of apocalypse was about to take place - the wind tunnel effect in the entrance sent a menacing skirl of leaves spiralling up as I walked to my car. Nothing apocalyptic actually happened, although the wind d

Hair. Oranges. Colours. Ow my neck.

Angus got a haircut today, after growing a truly horrible head of hair for over a year. I tried not to say anything because it's his life and bodily autonomy etc. and it was a little amusing how insane it was driving my husband. He usually wore a hat, which made it look borderline acceptable, but once last summer we were in a restaurant so I told him to take his hat off, and when he did I told him to put it back on. Eve is having a tough week with multiple school-stress meltdowns. She said she doesn't really know why because she's had weeks with an equal number of tests and presentations before. I think it's just freaking November. I got into bed with her last night to rub her back and talk things over to calm her down before going to sleep and to distract her I told her the most horrifyingly offensive joke I ever laughed at. I won't tell it to you because you would have to break off all contact with me in response and I am choosing to believe that that would m

Adventures in Babysitting

When Eve was younger she used to think that she was going to do a ton of babysitting once she was old enough because she loves kids, and money. It hasn't quite worked out that way because of a few factors, the primary one being that we just don't know that many people with younger kids who are within babysitting distance. There's also the fact that she needs fourteen hours of sleep and doesn't like to stay up late. The few times she's done it have gone swimmingly, so she may have gone into this one a little cocky. My friend has a pair of adorable four-year-old twin girls and she messaged me Thursday night to ask if Eve was interested in babysitting them Friday. I was in Barrie, but I hooked them up, and Eve went over Friday evening. The texts I got were as follows: "I'm here. All good. Parents haven't left yet." "Bedtime is going kind of badly. It was supposed to be lights out at 7:20." (It was now 8:45) "They're supposed

Day 24

I am just back from a typically fabulous week-end at Zarah's, and Angus is home for a week for American Thanksgiving, so I am very tired and very happy. The GPS suggested I go the northern route instead of the highway route, and it's a little lonely at times and a little short on regular bathroom breaks, but also very beautiful and less boring. I like to keep myself alert by blasting music and singing at the top of my lungs, and there's a certain fierce, unique joy that arises from belting out an Indigo Girls ballad while speeding through a quintessentially northern Ontario landscape that you really can't get while chugging down the 401 and stopping every hour at an identical On Route station. We do Christmas shopping and downtown wandering and hanging out and running into a bunch of people that Zarah knows and usually something kind of weird happens. This time it was a pair of men who were having lunch in the coffee shop where we did and then we all ended up at the s

Girls Weekend on a couple of levels

I’m in Barrie visiting Zarah and Christmas shopping, so I know what you’re all waiting for. Doris from Bravo says hi. My boobs currently have altitude sickness. 

Not to Be Confused With a Garden-Variety Diss

I just looked up the definition of clapback and it gave me joy. My best clapbacks of recent memory were both on Facebook, which is fantastic for avoiding l'esprit de l'escalier (a French term used in English for the predicament of thinking of the proper reply too late). One was on a neighbourhood Moms group (which is a beautiful and terrible thing). A woman made a bitchy post about people who leave early from school recitals and then closed comments. This is a bit of a hot button for me - I hate that people think they can judge other people without knowing their reality, and I hate the helicopter parenting mentality that makes people worry that their own children will be hurt if every single goddamned parent doesn't stay until the bitter end of every school production (I've checked with the very small sample of my own kids and their friends, who confirm that they cared not a whit if parents other than their own saw their performances). As long as people are subtle an

After Reading One Too Many Smug Sneering Movie Reviews

I read this column  by Johanna Schneller awhile ago and it really stuck with me. It also reminded me of why I get pissed when I hear people denigrating movies like Crazy Rich Asians as nothing special, or calling movies like The Fault in Our Stars "sick lit" and automatically assuming that they are worthless. Sure, Crazy Rich Asians was a little formulaic and the male lead was a little too good to be true. Sure, there are stories about young people dying of cancer that are exploitative and melodramatic. But here's the thing - for every groundbreaking movie starring mostly white people, there are probably a hundred crappy ones. Don't Asian people or black people or Hispanic people deserve to see themselves represented in movies with clunky dialogue and ridiculous car chases and cringy sex scenes just as much as white people? And people with cancer or other debilitating diseases? So they get representation in a cheesy romantic movie - big fucking deal. Ever seen lit

Day 20

I have been on fire for remembering things that I typically forget this week. The vest I wanted to wear with my dress that I usually leave hanging on the back of my bedroom door? Remembered it. The library book that I wanted to take and read on my lunch break that I usually forget on my bedside table? Remembered it. The Christmas stamps that I usually forget to buy until the post office is sold out? Remembered to buy them. Then today I looked down at my chest and one of my boobs looked really weirdly shaped and I thought I had tucked something into my bra and forgotten about it. But I hadn't. My boob was just that weird-looking all on its own.  The universe giveth and the universe taketh away. 

Skin in the Game

I had a doctor's appointment by referral today - a family doctor that does dermatology, because I had a couple of moles that my doctor thought should be looked at but dermatologists in this city tend to be booking a couple of years out. It was across town in the afternoon so I was a little anxious about the driving, the parking, the shirt removing, the getting back home in rush hour - I think that covers it. A little anxious, but less anxious than I would have been a few years ago. We call this growth. The drive was fine. I found a parking lot close by, and then was briefly confused because it said note your license plate and pay at the meter and I couldn't find a meter. It turned out that I was parked in a tiny adjunct part of the lot that was quite large and involved several levels, but walking to find the meter brought me closer to the doctor's building, not further away. This is in stark contrast to that time my doctor was still downtown and I was trying to get to an

World Trivia Night X

Friday was World Trivia Night, which I realized while I was there is the tenth anniversary of my meeting Lynn  (HI LYNN) in person for the first time, which also means we have been doing WTN for ten years, which also means I have been blogging for ten years (and a couple of months.) Sometimes I mildly resent the importance placed on round numbers - why does everyone want to lose ten or twenty or thirty pounds? Why can't we just lose, like, seven pounds? Or thirteen? "Nice round number" is actually a set phrase for something that represents "a particularly noteworthy quantity of something" and it makes me feel sort of defensive of the other less-nice less-round numbers (which are what? mean flat numbers?) In spite of this, a ten-year-anniversary for meeting one of my favourite people in the Ottawa blogging scene, and the motley crew that I see once a year at WTV and enjoy enormously, and for starting my blog, which was done with great trepidation and very li

My Life is Awesome

This was our annual weekend trip to Collette's dad's cottage, six of us, about an hour away from Ottawa. I'd say we've been doing it for about ten years. We leave Saturday morning, drive to the cottage and drop our stuff, do lunch and Christmas shopping in Newboro and Westport and then go back to the cottage for Susanne's amazing seafood fondue, drinks and games. Some thoughts I had this time: -It is strange driving the route that takes us right past the turnoff to where Matt's Nana and Grandpa used to live and we used to visit regularly. They haven't lived there for years now and we've lost them both, but I can drive the route without even thinking about it. -I have been bitter (if you hadn't noticed) that the snow came so early this year, but the roads are clear now and the driving though the snow-covered fields and trees was very beautiful - I feel like there is maybe a lesson here, one that I'm trying very hard not to learn. -If you a

Five Dollar Caesars



Forgot to post tonight. Sorry. 

Surly Thursday: Shove Your Patronizing Snow Joy Meme Up Your Ass (not really)

You know the one, right? Honestly, everyone who has posted this is a friend, and I'm not actually angry at them, because on the face of it, it makes perfect sense - snow is going to happen, so why not try to find the joy in it? The problem is, it's terribly simplistic. People aren't angry at snow because they're inherently cranky or miserable. For a significant portion of the population (seniors, people with mobility issues, Reynaud's syndrome GOOGLE IT), snow represents an actual hardship. It makes walking harder. It makes driving harder. None of these problems are going to be banished by thinking "oh, snow is so pretty, I will henceforth cease my uncivil grumblings!"  I actually unfriended someone on Facebook last year because there was one more bad storm that coincided with a pretty bad mental health crisis and her chortling at Ottawa from warmer climes was the last straw (yes, I acknowledge that that was, in fact, down to me being cranky and

Wordless Wednesday

What it looks like when my daughter comes into my room to discuss Important Things.

Home is Where the Carnage Is

I realized last night that I might be in a bit of a manic phase, but the really annoying kind where I'm actually very tired but I still have trouble resting. After noticing with pleased surprised that my feet were doing quite well despite working and walking on the treadmill more often, I spent all afternoon Sunday in the basement on the cold hard floor cleaning and organizing (do you want to see the picture of my gleaming steel shelves with their gorgeously arrayed cans of soup and coconut milk and black beans? I WILL SHOW YOU AGAIN) and yesterday my feet and back were extremely cranky. So I came home after work and put them up like a sensible person, right? HA ha, no, I am dumb. I made dinner and made chicken stock and cooked a bunch of bacon for a recipe. I went upstairs to watch tv before bed and decided to go through the t-shirts in the closet ("decided" is actually my body getting jacked by my stupid brain, so my forebrain is thinking 'sit down, you idiot' a

Put it in Your Pantry With Your Cupcakes

I was just in my group chat with Nicole and Hannah (HI NICOLE AND HANNAH), which makes any day better, even a craptastic November day on which I am tired and my feet hurt and it started snowing at 3 p.m. and isn't supposed to stop until 6 a.m. The discussion ranged far afield from where it started, as is customary. At one point I said that our friend Beck's newsletter made me feel close to her because she likely felt the same about her gift list posts as I do about my year-end book posts - they're so much fun and also so much work. This reminded us of when Hannah did the hilarious post about People's Sexiest Men Alive issue (she said Richard Gere was a bit of a dick about vegetarianism and Buddhism and yet his stated goal of avoiding cruelty didn't keep him from singing in Chicago! I LOVE THIS). Hannah then said she could take a stab at reviewing the list again if she even recognized any of the names, or if they weren't all so young that it felt inappropriat

Day 9

This is what I did with my afternoon:  That's it. That's the post. 

The Mandela Effect

This is partly nablopomo desperation and partly genuine interest on my part as well as curiosity about how many people know about this. I had heard about a phenomenon where certain people swear that the Berenstain Bears were, at one point, the Berenstein Bears - people who swore they had books with that spelling. I am one of the people who did think, with a high degree of certainty that the -stein spelling was correct. I think there was one other thing too, but I can't remember what it was. Anyway, I just did a Facebook quiz on Disney movie images and it referred to the Mandela effect, which I had not heard this called before, and at first I thought it was referencing mandalas and I was extremely confused. Apparently this collective false memory effect is called the Mandela Effect because one of the examples is people who think Nelson Mandela died in Prison long before he actually did die, not in prison (sorry, I tried to think of a way I could make that sentence even more awkwa

Well, it's Friday

If it hasn't become apparent because you are less obsessed with the minutiae of my life than I like to imagine my loyal blog-readers are, I am indeed attempting to blog every day in November, although the official NaBloPoMo has, I believe, gone the way of the dodo. I have done it every year since my first year blogging, which I just now realized is exactly ten years ago, and it would feel wrong not to at least take a stab at it. I think I only missed a few days last year when we were in Mexico and I couldn't get anything to post, but my frustration was amply soothed by camel-riding, sailing and an abundance of passion fruit margaritas. I always feel like I have ample draft ideas stored away for November, and then when I look for them they are either non-existent or not nearly as clever as I imagined when I jotted them down. So on days when I'm feeling uninspired, if Eve doesn't say something witty and bloggable and nothing cool happens I'm stuck casting around for

Surly Thursday - Could Be But It's Not

Sorry for the inside joke with myself. Eve's Junior Kindergarten teacher (also Angus's, we all adore her, Catherine M., may her name be praised) when it was time for the kids to get ready for home played an alphabet game where she'd hold up a card with a capital letter on it and the kids would figure out what name it stood for, and if there were multiple kids with that first letter to their name and they guessed wrong, she would say "could be, but it's not", and the child it was would go to their cubby and start getting their coat on etc. Today was chill. No early band, no school for Eve because she's still sick, just a few errands to run and then a birthday dinner tonight. I went to the library, went to Indigo, went to see a friend who sells skin care products, then was shopping for pajama tank tops in Marks Work Wearhouse when my phone rang. It was my mom. My mom is a wonderful woman who has given me more than I could possibly describe. She played wi

Who is the Smartest Child in the World?

Someone named William James Sidis, according to Google. Enrolled in university at the age of 11. IQ of 250-300. Probably really fun at parties. I went to the ceremony for awards for last year at Eve's school this morning. Eve wasn't feeling well but she dragged herself out early because the band plays before each grade's awards. I always have trouble taking a decent picture at these things. I have no good excuse, except that she's like the third student and by the time she's up I haven't really seen many other people do their thing yet. The principal even told everybody to take their time because they've earned it, and they didn't need to rush across the stage or rush the picture-taking. I still only got two shots where she was still fixing her hair and trying to position the paper correctly. I was also trying not to block the student photographer who was taking everyone's picture - this was new this year, and maybe they got a better shot than I

Endoscopy Rundown Or Stomach of Darkness (The Horror! The Horror!)

I read until late, so I didn't sleep long because I had to be there early, but I slept straight through from when I fell asleep until I woke up to my alarm. The drive was fine - we're always a little nervous having to do what we call "Escape from Barrhaven". Matt dropped me off at the main entrance and went to park. I asked at the information desk where to go and it was easy to find. I checked in at the desk and got a bracelet. Matt found me a few minutes later, and then a woman came and asked the woman at the desk if she was in the right place for a colonoscopy and when the woman said yes she said "that's too bad", which reminded me of Swistle's endoscopy post. The other two guys in the waiting room for an older and younger guy, and the older guy was keeping busy by recounting every medical disaster that had happened to everyone he ever knew, even peripherally. Guy with an enlarged prostate - they set the laser too high and his intestines went

(Dis) Orientation

I have an endoscopy on Tuesday morning. I've kind of been in denial, and when I cautiously let myself poke my head out of it, I was surprised to find that I'm nervous, but not brick wall nervous. Does anybody else have the brick wall? I mean, there's "I don't really feel like going to the gym today, but I"ll push through" and then there's "I want to go to the gym, but there's this brick wall". There was the time Matt was out of town and I had to take Eve to the Carleton University basketball game and I knew there was no way to get out of it but I was brick walling hard and I basically sobbed all afternoon and it was almost insurmountably hard (just getting there, of course, once I was there everything was basically fine, although none of the other parents talked to me because apparently I have some giant invisible-to-me writing on me that says NOT A VALID BASKETBALL MOM. And it seriously is basketball-specific, because I've never had

Doing the Right Things for the Wrong Reasons

Scene: Our kitchen, 6:30 p.m. Matt is just home from a baseball meeting and picking up a few groceries. Eve is on the couch with her laptop working on her physics project. I am carrying garbage bags of clothes down for Diabetes to pick up tomorrow. Lucy is racing around with her purple dog because she's ecstatic that we're all in the same place. Me: "I dismantled the clothing mountain in the closet and left twelve pairs of pants and about twenty shirts for you to go through". Matt: "Okay."   Me: (gently) "...and I donated everything with a 32 waist." Matt: "Ouch." Me: "Don't feel bad. They were all very old." Matt: "But I have to lose weight." Me: "Ugggghhhhh, we've talked about this multiple times, our daughter is sitting right there, can we NOT with the 'I need to lose weight'?" Him: "Okay. But the thing is, I need to lose weight." Eve: "I forg

Let's Talk About Sleep Apnea!

Since Steph was good enough to ask her question (does air blowing into your mouth from the CPAP make you thirsty) in front of blog and everyone,  I figured I would answer it the same way (to be helpful to as many people as possible, of course, NOT because I am a whore for an easy post idea). I was trying to find a subtle way to say that I feel like there's a slight misperception that only overweight people have sleep apnea without sounding defensive - I am certainly overweight at this point, but my sleep doc says I have a palate the size of the average eight-year-old and I've probably had obstructive sleep apnea since puberty. I did a bit of research and found an article from a neurology institute, the first sentence of which is "sleep apnea has long been thought of as a fat old man's disease" - guess they were less concerned with diplomacy. Apparently there's actually an increasing trend of women who are not overweight having sleep apnea. Regardless o