Wednesday, August 31, 2011

iPhone Photo Phun: Potty Training Bootcamp

I'm linking up with Liz at a belle, a bean, & a chicago dog for some iPhone Photo Phun

We've been doing some serious potty training in our house this week.  Sort of a potty-training boot camp.  I'm, of course, the camp leader...aka cheerleader, aka drill sargeant, aka cleaner-upper of bodily functions.  I should put that on a business card.  I wonder what the official abbreviation would be...

I digress.

It's the week before Kindergarten and two weeks before Preschool and I decided that we're basically going to stay in the house, in the buff, (well, not me as I'm pretty proficient in this potty business), but we are going to work it out (pun intended). 

I've mentioned before:  Big T is not a fan of "The Poop". He does not like it; he does not want to do it.  But it's probably going on 3 years now that he's had this issue of withholding; we're seeing a counsellor for it and, frankly, I think he's too smart for this counsellor and this boot camp is the way to go.  (again, pun intended). 

It's definitely a challenge staying in the house, firstly because the weather's nice and, secondly, just trying to find things to do that don't include anything electronic like the Wii, the laptop, the iPad or iPhone, but I'm trying to ignore their begging add some incentive to our little project.

I'm happy to say that it's only been two days, but things are coming out progressing nicely. 

Little K is a master at making it to the potty for no. 1 when he's home and naked.  He's a bit freaked out by his newfound awareness that he needs to go poo, but I'm told that's normal and not to panic that he's going to also be a withholder.  I took him out today sporting his new Curious George undies (no diaper or pull-up) and he only had one accident. 

Big T I think is finally realizing what's in store for him come Kindergarten where he will be required to go to the loo by himself and I won't be there to clean him.  His friend the other day saying "I smell poo" while he sat next to Big T, has hopefully helped matters.  He's never had a problem with pee, but he fights with Mr. Poo.  (Wow, never would I have thought I would write those words...oh well.)  But he is now using his own personal, flushable wipes and he proudly displayed what he deposited in the toilet this morning.  I try not to get too overjoyed as this has happened before only for him to continue his withholding ways the very next day.  I'm hoping this time he sticks with it because he's more than capable.

So here's a little collage of iPhone photos from our last couple of potty days...

1) the current state of our bathroom 2) Big T painting in the buff 3,4) Little K giving the 'ol 1-2 to Poo
5) Bravin' the world without a pull-up 6) there's that toilet shot again 7) Naked Picaso 8) PEE!

Saturday, August 27, 2011

Bliss Interruptus

Two days ago I found myself alone in my office; the only sound a tap, tap, tap on my computer keyboard.


...that lasted all of 5.3 seconds when I suddenly remembered why I had barricaded myself in my windowless office on what most probably was the nicest day of this summer thus far, and why my mom-in-law came to take the boys out of the house so I could have some time alone.

Oh, I remembered all right.  Heart pounding, eyes as wide as any lemur's, fingers slipping off the keys of the keyboard from nervous sweating, biting my bottom lip, anxious about what awaits me and what will inevitably rule my life come September 6th and for the next 10 or so years.

Dramatic?  Perhaps. Only because I sense a lot of drama coming my way. 

I thought being a SAHM, while rewarding, was/is the hardest job I've ever had/have.  Come this September, my most rewarding job is going to be even harder as I attempt to get two boys out the door before to Kindergarten and one to Preschool, lunch packed, snacks prepared.  (I'm for sure going to need a raise - HA!) I'm going to need to gear up for mornings of "Come on, eat your need power!" and "Come and let's do your hair, get you dressed, wash your face, brush your teeth."  And let us not forget "No, you can't play the Wii" and "No, you can't have the iPad; it needs to be charged." 

I think I'm going to look upon these days as easy in comparison.  No more lounging around in our pjs 'til more last-minute more sponteniety and dare I say "inconsistency"?  (Well, maybe just a little)

As I filled up the busy mommy's calendar that adorns my fridge, I felt a bit better.  At least I am now organized (kind of) and have a sense of what's going to occur (sort of) and can prepare myself..."prepare" being the optimal word.  The goal is to prepare everything, food, clothes the night before. 

So that's it.  I'm a bit freaked out at all that I have to do before school clothes, earthquake kit, indoor shoes, etc, etc, etc, but I'm really going to try to just relax and enjoy it. 

Wow, I can't believe my babies are going to school.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Return Of The Zombie Mom

Photo credit:

Aaaaaaack!  Run for your lives.  It's the return of the Zombie Mom!  (starring: Mommy Inconsistent)

She's back and she's DEAD TIRED! 

Too tired to clean, too tired to cook, too tired to play and ...


... she's too tired to blog.

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Hug Your Loved Ones

For the past 3-1/2 years a friend of mine, Pavel Kulisek, has been in a Mexican prison accused of a crime he didn't commit.

No evidence.  No trial.  A real life nightmare.

Today the nightmare ended.

Innocence recognized.  Freedom.  Home.

It was a long, horrifying ordeal that really could have happened to anyone.  But it's over now and the healing can begin.  Tonight he is home where he should be...with his beautiful, strong wife and his two gorgeous and smart little girls.  I am so happy for them...words can't describe it.  He lost over three years of watching his girls grow, of being with his wife who he's been with since they were teenagers.  Seeing the strength of his wife, my friend, Jirina, through this has been unbelievable.  She is the strongest woman and MOM I know.  She never gave up fighting for Pavel's release, taking care of her girls, doing what needed to be done.  She's amazing.

As a parent, I can only imagine not being able to see your children.  I don't want to think of it.  As tired as I am and as much as I just want a break sometimes, I wouldn't want my life any other way.  How lucky am I that my boys are sleeping in their beds a few feet away, safe.  I am safe.  Hubby is safe.  We can all hold each other any time we want.

I am grateful.

July 2009

September 2010

Hug your loved ones tonight.

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Not Exactly Newsworthy

This guy always comes into my work, asking me if I've heard the latest, breaking did I know gold went up?  (Oh, yah, I'm totally on top of that)  Have I heard the latest on Monsanto, GMO's, Chem trails, Obama...etc, etc, etc.  He literally goes on and on and on and on get the idea.

I'm a stay-at-home wonderwoman mom.

'Nuff said?

Me thinks so too.

I may not be up to snuff with world events these least not when they immediately happen.  I'm always a couple a few about a week late in hearing the latest news of the world or celebrity gossip for that matter. 

There are a few things, however, that I know that this guy does not.

For example:

(Image credit: Spectra Animation 2006)
Toopy & Binoo are best buds and recently took a trip under Toopy's bed where they encountered all sorts of friendly monsters.

Curious George, Ted and Bill went for a hike where Ted and Bill got stuck on the edge of a mountain and George used his tracking skills to backtrack to where they started their hike.  He got help and saved the day!

Wallace & Gromit rescued a herd of sheep and their owner from a very naughty bulldog.

Max & Ruby and Grandma went to the store to see Super Bunny, but there was a big shoe sale going on which Ruby didn't want to miss out on.  She made Max wait to see Super Bunny and he almost missed him, but ended up that he and Super Bunny saved Ruby from a falling pile of shoeboxes.  Way to go, Max!

Dora and Boots have a friend named Benny the Bull and he was in a road race.  And although a few obstacles got in his way, he persevered and "Never Gave Up!"

And finally:

George Shrinks' science project went awry when his tadpoles grew faster than he expected and there were frogs taking over his house!

There's a lot more knowledge where that comes from but I'm going to stop for fear of making anybody reading this feel inferior to me and all that I know.

(uh, yah...think I'll go read a newspaper now)

Friday, August 12, 2011

Boycotting the Blog (kind of)


Shhhhhh, I'm not really here.

I'm boycotting my blog today (in a kinda, sorta way) in favour of hanging out on Twitter and, no.1, getting to know my way around that place and no. 2, getting to know other bloggers in a different way.
Before I head back over there to the place where Tweeps reside, I'll just explain that this is the brainchild of Liz over at A Belle, A Bean & A Chicago Dog.

So I've gotta run.  If you want to know more, check it out over at Liz's place.

And never saw me here. 

Thursday, August 11, 2011


I'm super excited!!  I won an ultimate back-to-school combo pack of labels from Mabel's Labels ...

... and I have Shell over at Things I Can't Say to thank.

Thanks again, Shell!

These come at a great time since Big T will be heading to Kindergarten this September and as it gets closer and closer I'm starting to freak out just a wee bit.  I'm also a bit of a label geek so I am truly ecstatic and did a little happy dance when I got the email that I won.  (See, Hubby, I told you I was easy to please)  Big T will be going to school completely labelled...I'll try to avoid his forehead though.

This will make one part of going to Kindergarten easy.  I can cross that off my list.  Here's the rest of what's worrying me about Kindergarten:

1)  Packing lunches.  Big T is beyond a picky eater.  I'm talking pasta has never touched this boy's lips.  He's not into sandwiches either.  So I'm stressing about what to put in his lunch.  I finally got him to eat a Nutella sandwich, but since it's a nut it's probably banned from the schools like peanut butter.  I know there's no-nut butters out there, but he won't eat them. 

2)  Getting him out the door EVERY SINGLE DAY!  Last year Big T went to Preschool three days a week, Mon, Wed & Fri and he was always whining..."I have to go to school AGAIN??"  Getting him out the door just may be a nightmare challenge.

3)  Keeping him awake 'til bedtime.  There are still days when Big T needs a nap.  Not every day, but on those days, especially if we've been really active, he's pretty bagged.  So being at school from 9am-3pm every day, he's going to be so wiped he'll want a nap probably around 5-o'clock.  If he stays asleep 'til 7 the next morning, I'd be laughing, but this child has only ever needed 9 hours of sleep a night.

4)  Potty time.  Probably my biggest worry.  Big T has - shall I say - "issues" surrounding poop.  As I've written about before, he just does not like to go and holds it.  He has a certain way he sits on the ground, floor, whatever, when he's holding it.  Of course he can't always hold it all and I just fear him being teased because as we all know, kids can be cruel.

I know it will all work itself out though and all in all I'm excited for him and all that he's going to experience, the new friends he will make and how much he will learn, and now the cool labels that will adorn his belongings.

Sniff, baby's growing up.

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Dear John Letter To Guilt

Dear Guilt,

Up Yours! 

I know, harsh words, but ya know what?  I'm not bothered.  You've been around far too often and it's time you knew you're really unwelcome.  You've taken just too many liberties and I'm over it.

Like the other day...I felt you when I layed on the couch, exhausted, while the kids had to amuse themselves for a change.  I WAS EXHAUSTED!

Today is the day I'm saying "NO" to you.  Today Big T wanted a break from his 'lil summer camp and I'm obliging him 'cuz "I" don't feel like the run-around either.  Today the boys are watching tv...a lot of tv...they're playing on the computer, the iPad, whatever.  (and we may even go to the dreaded mall!)  By the kids doing this, I am able to sort through the mountains (yep, plural) of laundry and paperwork that have grown all over our house.  I've got socks on my kitchen table for Pete's sake.  And no, I don't know who Pete is and I'm not bothered about that either.  Stop changing the subject.  The point is that no matter what, I will not feel you today.

As much as I'd rather be off having a pedicure (have you seen the state of my feet?) I'm going to get organized today 'cuz that is for me too.  Cluttered house, cluttered mind and all that.  Oh, yah, and I'm writing this post while they watch tv in their bedroom...what do you say about that?  I say guilt-schmilt!

So pack up your shit, Guilt...out the door with you. 

(maybe see you tomorrow though...sigh)

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

The Stealth Squad

This post is dedicated to Diaries of a Grumpy Grateful Mom for introducing me to geocaching...can't believe I'd never heard of it before!  Thanks to her, my family & I had so much fun tonight! 

Geocaching...this is how they describe it on their website: 

"Geocaching is a real-world outdoor treasure hunting game. Players try to locate hidden containers, called geocaches, using GPS-enabled devices and then share their experiences online."

So that's exactly what we did tonight after dinner.  I kind of had to force my boys out of the house where our tvs, computers and iPhones reside, but after we found the treasure we were seeking, everyone was in agreement about how much fun it was and we're looking forward to our next treasure-hunting adventure.

Here's how it went ...

At the start of our hunt...scoping out the terrain.  It was determined that sandals will NOT be the footwear of choice for future missions.

It's supposed to be under a rock...One, Two, Three..LIFT!

Oooh!  We found it!!

Our Booty!

I've gotta say...I think I'm addicted!  Uh-oh, there's that addictive personality coming out again!  Blame it on that Grumpy Grateful Mom.  It wasn't even difficult explaining it to the boys that they weren't to take anything home but leave for someone else to find.  And it was so cute watching them be all sneaky while we put it back.  We really were The Stealth Squad. 

So I too am giving an unpaid endorsement to the sport (is it a sport?) of geocaching.  It's a great family activity, especially in the summer!  Who knows, we might even hide our own stash of something ... WAIT JUST A MINUTE!  I'm thinking this might be a good way of getting rid of all those annoying toys around the house...hmmmm.

Saturday, August 6, 2011

The Contents Of My Purse

I don't know about you, but I've always been kind of fascinated about the contents of someone's purse, bag, wallet, man-bag, fanny-pack, etc.

Perhaps I'm just nosy, but I think what a person carries around in their bag says a lot about them.

Now, I would NEVER go ahead and look in someone's bag without asking, but I have actually asked...but not complete strangers (I'm not a freak!), but a girlfriend, for example.  I usually get a wierd look, asked why I want to do that, and then they oblige me.  So far there hasn't been anything wierd in any of the bags...just the ol' boring stuff, wallet, lipstick, phone, maybe the odd tissue.  Nothing to write a blog post about.  (But I'm doing it anyways)

Back in my single days, I kind of took pride in the fact that I was very organized and carried a lot of stuff I might need "just in case".  I was the go-to girl.  If you were in desperate need of something, there was a good chance I had it in my purse.  A Tylenol?  Got it.  A bandaid?  Got it.  Condom....haha!  Okay, there was one thing I wasn't prepared for.

All I can say is that the contents of my purse has changed DRAMATICALLY since becoming a mom.  All sorts of wierd stuff ends up in there.  For example, this is my purse after today...

This actually isn't too bad.  There's lots of useful things in there. 

You've got your tennis ball for any impromtu tennis match you might partake in. 

If a sudden dump of snow happens, despite it being the middle of summer, there's the snowboard/ski lock you'll be needing. 

A rock for skipping merrily into the lake you just happen to be sitting next to while eating your fruit leather, followed by some Jelly Bellies 'cuz it's 1pm and you still haven't had hardly any breakfast, let alone lunch.   Oh, and there's the spoon I'm going to need to scoop up said Jelly Bellies from the bottom of my bag.

I see the instructions for that Bubble Launcher piece of crap toy that the boys just got from their Grandma.  That's pretty important to have in there.  It doesn't matter that the toy is absolute shite, doesn't work with or without instructions, leaks all over and is the biggest waste of money.

Look!  A little green marble.  Who doesn't need or want a marble with them at all times? 

Wallet...check.  Cell phone...check.  Shades...check.

Aaah, the essential Starbucks Iced Via sample.  No cup and no ice, but that probably doesn't matter since there's a Starbucks on practically every corner of every street in every city around the world.

Let's not forget about Papa Smurf sportin' a telescope and the baby from Toy Story 3.  Smurfs just make people happy and there's that 3rd baby I'm not going to have.

The piece de resistance that every mom should carry...4 Hotwheels cars.  These are essential to combat the whining that will surely ensue once the car enthusiast in your family starts to freak because he didn't bring one single car with him to the park and he NEEEEEEEDS one! 

So there we have it.  Guess the only thing this says about me is I'm a mom and a sucker for carrying around other people's things.  Why there isn't any Tylenol in there is beyond me since these days I probably get more headaches than I did when I was single.

Now I'd just love to know...

What's in your bag?

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Watch Out For Addictive Behaviour!

I started this blog as I think most mommy bloggers a way to vent about my day, to keep a record for my kids of our times together when they were young, but mostly because I needed something...ANYTHING, for myself...just for ME, a creative outlet in a way.

And now I'm starting to freak. (No, Hubby, not be a freak...geesh)

Blogging is fun, but it's addictive, as I imagine most addictive behaviour is or starts out as.  I've never considered myself as having an addictive personality...until now. 

To make matters worse...or better, depending on who you talk to...I created a Twitter account!

 (What have I done?)

For those of you out there who have heard me diss Twitter...I know!  I know!  I am now eating crow...or whatever kind of tweety bird the Twitter bird is.  (I'm so confused)  I notice so many mommy bloggers are tweeting that there must be something to it and I hate being left out of the loop. 

So there.  Call me a hypocrite.  It is what it is and I yam what I yam (oh, do forgive the corny Popeye pun), which I suppose what I am now is a Tweeter?  A Twitterer?  A Twit?  (Hey, now!)

Aaaack, I have no idea what I'm doing, but you can watch my new addiction me figure it out here if you've nothing better to do.

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Laundry Room Blues

Okay, this post will most definitely be categorized as a rant.  It won't be positive...less than jolly...there might be swearing (or suggested swearing at least!)...most certainly sarcastic.

I've just gotta know...what the EFF is up with my laundry room?  Upon walking into it, I turn into this:

It has a mind of its own.  I think it's out to get me. 

It's like an episode from that show Hoarders...or whatever the eff that show is called.

I try..I really try, but no matter what I I try to keep it tidy...a day after I organize the recycling, empty the laundry basket, clean out the paint brushes in the sink and put them away, it's back to looking like the killing fields of Cambodia - okay, that's inappropriate...not the same at all.  But I'm ranting here.  (And I didn't say it was going to be a rational rant.)  How 'bout my laundry room is more like your local dump?  When in doubt, dump it in the laundry room.  Bikes & helmuts?  Strollers?  Swimming gear?  Old, broken toys that we say we're going to throw out?  And garbage...oh, so much effin' garbage!  No place to put it?  Nonesense!  Shove it in the laundry room!

Oh, did I say it happened after a day?  Who am I kidding?  It happens in the blink of an least as soon as I turn my back.  I'm so very afraid each morning of what is going to await me.  And there's no one to blame (or no one who will accept the blame).


So here's what it looked like this morning...

And here's how I wished it looked:

Maybe if I think hard enough about the latter pic, I can actually make it materialize.  Law of Attraction and all that.

Can you imagine how you'd purposely get yourself dirty, throw your kids in the mud just to spend time in that glorious laundry room?  No...imagine a maid doing your laundry in that glorious laundry room while you have a massage, a facial, a pedicure .... sigh ...

Okay, I'm done.  Rant's over.

For now.

Monday, August 1, 2011

My Big Plan

So as I'm on my hands and knees, my glamourous blue rubber gloves with the floral cuffs adorning my hands up to my elbows, cleaning the bathroom floor, Little K walks in and says to me:  "What are you doing, Mum?"  In his defense, it's not surprising he's asking me this question because it's something he rarely sees.  Please notice I said "rarely".  So that doesn't mean never.  Just almost never.

This gets me thinking about one of my goals in be the best mother-in-law in the world.  I have a sneaky 'lil plan; I just don't know how I'm going to go about achieving it yet.  One way I think I can achieve this highly coveted status is not by cleaning my future daughter-in-law's bathroom, though I guess that would make me pretty amazing.  No, her fabulous husband can do that.  And by "fabulous husband", I mean one of MY fabulous boys, which I'm going to help create.  I need to teach them how to clean, how to LOVE cleaning, how not to complain about cleaning, to clean with a smile on their face and to know that cleaning is not only woman's work.  Quite a task I've set for myself.

The question is:  When do I start on my evil ingenious plan?  I've taught them a few things here and there...have had them vaccuum or wipe up a spill, help clean their room, but they're still itty-bitties afterall.  Sometimes it's just easier for Hubby and I to do it ourselves. (I know!  I'm sabotaging the whole thing!)  I just get so tired of hearing myself talk about cleaning, cajoling my boys into doing it without much success.  What I want to know is:  When do I put a mop and bucket in their hands and say off you go and you'll thank me for this later when all the girls are beating down your oh-so-clean and dare I say fresh-smelling bachelor pad.  If my boys don't thank me, their sigificant others surely will.  And then of course once they have said mop and bucket in hand, how do I make them head off in the direction of the loo, willingly and with a sure-mom-anything-for-you attitude?  ('Cuz that attitude exists, right?)  There will no doubt be an insane amount of whining wheeling and dealing involved.

I'm really going to have to think this through because I'm thinking that Hubby and I may not be the best role models for the boys when it comes to keeping a tidy/clean house.  Don't get me wrong...we clean up...I'd be really insane if we didn't (as opposed to just a little bit insane?)  This is a "do as I say, not as I do" situation.  I used to be a good and consistent cleaner back in my single days when it didn't take half the day to pick up the crap toys on the floor before you even pulled out the vaccuum. 

All is not lost though because I know good cleaners run in my family.  My Dad was the youngest of a bunch of kids and his mom was pretty great at raising him to be a good husband...(well, at least in the area of keeping up the home.  He sucked at the faithful husband part.)  But he was a good cleaner/fixer-upper, those sorts of things.  My brothers don't shy away from a good cleaning either.  And Hubby?   Um, when it gets bad...really bad.  However, when he's in his cleaning mood, he is pretty thorough.  (See, Hubby?  This really is a compliment.)

I think my lack-luster attitude about the deep clean goes back to after having Big T and reading that you don't want to over sanitize everything...helps build a better immune system, etc.  I let out a big sigh of relief and maybe even a loud "Hoo Haw!" with a click of my heels thrown in.  To say I was relieved would be an understatement.  Afterall, I didn't want my child to be sick all the time.  I had a great uncle who used to say "You have to eat a ton of dirt before you die".  Makes sense to me.

Whoops!  Looks like I've gone on a bit of a tangent.  Back to the question of when to begin with my boys?  I remember my Mom writing names on the calendar for which kid's day it was to do the dishes.  I think I was about 11.

So I'm looking to hear from some of you fabulous moms out there who might be able to give me some great tips on this subject and help me in my not so meniacal plan.  Especially those of you with older children. What worked?  What didn't? 

I couldn't resist setting these shots up...look how my 'lil dudes obliged me.  A good sign perhaps?