Category - family

1
Is This Too Much Bubble Wrap?
2
The First Day of School — It Gets Easier
3
The Post Where I Reveal The Absolute Best Toy Ever
4
Summer Snipe Hunt
5
Magical Meal Moments…mostly
6
Partners In Parenting
7
Our Favourite Ride At Disney World
8
The Sweetest Voice
9
Interview Your Child For Posterity
10
Mother of the Year

Is This Too Much Bubble Wrap?

If you say you’re not at least partially panicked and freaked about your kids’ safety, then you’re a pants on fire liar. That, or you’re way more calm, cool and collected than I am. Can I please be you? If I could wrap my children in a protective layer of safety and security — like some kind of Teflon kiddie coating, but without the carcinogens, I’d totally do it. I’m at my happiest when my kids are wearing their helmets — not necessarily for biking, but just you know, around. Sebastian is clearly a big boy. He needs less and less protection from his smother, er mother. But this doesn’t mean I won’t stop reminding and nagging. Thankfully he’s a good sport about it. “Look at you mum. You’re growing as a person.” he’ll joke. And then I’ll make a remark about my big bum and we’ll laugh, oh how we’ll laugh (as I’m quietly sobbing and cursing the Frito Lay company in my head). I don’t think he feels suffocated and I really am trying to loosen the reins and trust that we’ve taught him well. But hot damn it’s hard. I partially blame having a serial child killer[…]

Read More

The First Day of School — It Gets Easier

  Blogs across the cybersphere today are bursting with tales of parental pride and angst. The first day back at school brings sentimental reflection and tears—showers of maternal (and yes, some paternal) tears. I cry every single year on the first day of school. Happy tears, but also some from worry and that overwhelming sense of protectiveness and love that parents know so well. This year? No tears. Not one drop. When we got to school this morning, my son saw his friends lined up behind their new Grade five teacher and he said without a moment’s hesitation, “Bye mum!” as he ran off to join them, barely looking back. Was I sad about that? Hell no. The kid was excited to be back at school. No tears over here. In fact, I fist pumped. Then we went to find my daughter’s class. Grade two. I taught second grade for nearly a decade and I find it hard to reconcile the memories of the children I taught over the years, with the image of my seven year today. She is so different from them, yet exactly the same in many ways. My daughter’s teacher is perfect: young, energetic, gentle and[…]

Read More

The Post Where I Reveal The Absolute Best Toy Ever

It’s not a board game. And it’s certainly not a video game or a motorized thing-a-ma-jig. You won’t it find in any store. It often comes in pairs and your children will treasure this endlessly stimulating source of joy and laughter for hopefully many years to come. If your children are lucky enough to have grandparents (or a special aunt or uncle) in their lives, you know how special it is. My kids light up whenever we tell them we’re heading over to see them. How lucky we are to have both sets near by — these people who are genetically programed to love my children; to look out for them and after them. Ahem, built in babysitters *parental fist pump* Not everyone is as fortunate. We know this and we appreciate having our parents in our lives every day. My kids don’t quite understand how blessed they are, but they sure enjoy spending time with and learning from their grandparents. So my number one pick for the toy that is sure to bring a smile to a child’s face is a loving grandparent — the kind that gets down on the floor to play and enjoys spending time with[…]

Read More

Summer Snipe Hunt

  You’ve likely been up to your water wings in summer fun; swimming, tubing, star gazing, firefly catching, marshmallow toasting, hopscotching, bubble blowing, Geocaching, slipping and sliding and just exploring the great outdoors. But have you tried snipe hunting? Before you imagine the Thornbury clan decked out in coveralls with a deer strapped to the roof of the mini-van, let me explain. The boys trying their hand at paintball this summer. FYI, paintball pellets pack a sting, but boy did they have fun! The origin of the term the ‘Snipe Hunt‘ is based on a practical joke where inexperienced campers are told about a bird or animal called the snipe along with preposterous methods of catching it, such as running around the woods carrying a bag or making strange noises. Real snipe (a family of shorebirds) are difficult to catch, so much so that the word “sniper”is derived from it to refer to anyone skilled enough to shoot one. Source Last summer our son went out east to New Brunswick to help his uncle and family set up the cottage they bought on a shimmering lake. My husband went too. It was an ideal boys’ get away. They swam, they[…]

Read More

Magical Meal Moments…mostly

The cheerful chatter, the sweet sharing, the ardent appreciation of your creative efforts in the kitchen — meal time is the cornerstone of a family, and the most magical time.    Haha. Just kidding. It’s exhausting. Nobody is clambering to eat the healthy dishes I’ve slaved over, except for maybe the two begging dogs who are slobbering under the table, getting hair on my pants.   Meals are a balance between casual conversation and intense negotiations. “How was your day? Just eat two more bites!” And let’s not forget reminders like, “Too much! Slow down. Hurry up, its getting cold. Chew! That’s too big, you could choke. Drink your water. Please don’t stab the table with your fork. Elbows off the table. Elbows off your brother. This is my chair, THAT is your chair. Just eat, no more talking.” Left behind are leisurely dinners by candlelight, savouring food and adult conversation. Family dinners are loud and messy. Just like life. Milk will get spilled. Peas will roll onto the floor. Ketchup will end up in somebody’s hair. Kids will pick out the onions. Parents will eat the leftovers from their children’s plates. And someone (usually me) will rest their forehead[…]

Read More

Partners In Parenting

My husband and I are partners in every way. Well, except for banking—I “chequed” out of all the financial stuff years ago. Though I feign interest, he and I both know I’m thinking about Mad Men or what might be happening on Facebook while he’s explaining our bank statements.   But that’s okay because I am in charge of other important things—like groceries. Somebody has to menu plan and use coupons. It bores him to tears, so I do it.    Like I said, partners — each with specific roles and duties, like a well-oiled machine. Speaking of which, he deals with all things automotive, while I take care of the laundry. He’s actually banned from touching the dryer. The man has shrunk one too many pairs of my yoga pants.   When it comes to parenting, we share duties equally. Sometimes we employ the “good cop, bad cop” routine. I’m always the good cop because I can’t stomach the bad cop shtick.When Avery was first diagnosed and we got a glimpse of what we might be dealing with, we realized that one parent would need to stay home full-time. We both knew it would be me. Not that my[…]

Read More

Our Favourite Ride At Disney World

When we asked our kids to name their absolute favourite Disney World ride, they unanimously agreed… The Hollywood Tower at MGM Studios was the winner! If you think our six year old would be terrified and far too little for such a ride, think again. She was the dang ring leader. When we up rode the rickety elevator for the first time, we did so together as a family. When the ride came to a stop, and the shrill screams of the riders (mostly my husband) subsided, it went silent. People were obviously catching their breath, and possibly swallowing down bile. And then amid the dark quiet a tiny voice cried out, “AGAIN!!!” My husband’s response to our daughter’s passionate plea was a solid, “Nope. Never again.” So we ditched that nauseated chicken and lined up and rode again. Several times. Yes, I felt queasy. In fact, I lost all blood flow to my upper body and my organs jellified at some point.  But, I’d do it again.  I love that my kids are fearless. That’s one of the most glorious benefits of childhood. Adventures aren’t obstructed due to pragmatic reasoning. Exhilarating experiences aren’t missed because of “what ifs?” or “maybe[…]

Read More

The Sweetest Voice

  No matter how often I hear my children’s voices–and I hear them often since I gave birth to two chatterboxes–I’m never deaf to how sweet they are. Not the words necessarily, but the actual sound; the unique pitch and tone that make them easily identifiable in a crowd. Didn’t I read something about that and penguins? Oh nature, you rock my world. As we sorted through Christmas ornaments last week the kids sang carols, in the way kids do–loud and out of tune. My son sang in a prepubescent high pitched trill that only dogs can hear. While my daughter hummed in tone than can only be described as the lowest on the register. Granted the girl has a cold, but wow. Coupled with her inability to carry a tune we jokingly referred to her as “The Monotone Baritone.” Out of tune and off pitch, it was still music to my ears. Listening to them talk to each other, uttering phrases they’ve clearly heard from me, like mocking birds, makes me smile and reminds me that little ears hear all. *mental note: quit cursing* As I walked my girl through the school parking lot she chattered away, repeating herself,[…]

Read More

Interview Your Child For Posterity

Age 5 “What Are They Thinking?”   I originally interviewed my son three years ago. I asked him the same questions last year and again today. I plan to do it every year or so (with Avery too, once she’s able) for a sweet look back at what my kids were thinking once upon a time…   1. What is something mom always says to you? 2009 – “Be careful!” (So true. I’m obsessive actually. Poor boy’s gonna have issues) 2011- “Stranger Danger!” (Oh dear, clearly I am an over-protective control freak!) 2012 – “This laundry isn’t dirty!” (Why do they put perfectly clean clothes into their laundry hampers? Oh yes, to drive their control freak mother insane.)   2. What makes mom happy? 2009 – When I help my sister. (Aww.) 2011 – When I take care of Avery because if I didn’t, your life would be way harder (I am so lucky to be this boy’s mum.) 2012 – Clean rooms. (True. A messy room does a cranky mother make.)   3. What makes mom sad? 2009 – When babies cry. (Not true. As long as it’s someone else’s…I’m fine.) 2011 – If I get hurt or if[…]

Read More

Mother of the Year

When Heather lost her three year old son Zack, she didn’t stop being a mom. Though her heart was broken, Zack’s brothers needed her more than ever. So she embraced them and loved them as mothers do while she made a plan to keep a promise; the one she made to Zack and to herself as they said goodbye. She vowed to keep his memory alive and to have Elmo, Zack’s comfort and joy, speak his name. And that’s just what she did. Heather tirelessly raised money to create a room (two rooms in fact!) in Zack’s name at York Central Hospital. She also persevered until Kevin Clash (the puppeteer who IS Elmo) knew how much Zackie loved him. Kevin knows and he was touched. And Elmo did speak Zack’s name. Heather is healing with her family and she continues to tell Zack’s story, not only to keep his memory alive, but to help other families deal with the pain of losing a child.” Heather and I became friends online. We bonded over our special needs kids and soon discovered we had many other things in common. When my daughter was in hospital shortly after Zack died, Heather kept tabs on[…]

Read More

All images and text are copyright © 2019 Forever In Mom Genes