Archive - June 2011

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Two Teachers
2
Fact or Hairsay?
3
Bubbles For Zack
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Words About Wonderland
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PANCAKEZzzzzzzz
6
Glue Ear Can Be A Sticky Situation
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C is For Cookie and Also Catastrophe
8
Take A Dip In Our (Cess) Pool

Two Teachers

When Avery was diagnosed near the end of my maternity leave, I gave up teaching in order to stay home with her. It was the right choice, but some days when I walk down the school corridor, as a parent, no longer a teacher, I feel a twinge of regret. I miss my grade two classroom with its brightly coloured bulletin boards and pet Hermit Crabs. Wait, scratch that. I don’t miss the crabs. They were smelly. But I do miss my students and the funny things they’d say. Like the girl who went home after the first day of school and excitedly announced to her parents, “Mrs. Thornbury is nice and she has crabs.”   In retrospect, fish probably would have made a better class pet. When my son entered grade two last fall, I felt oddly possessive. This was MY grade. What if I didn’t like the teacher? What if she wasn’t doing it right?? I feared I wouldn’t be able to stop myself from making comparisons. I imagined myself going all “Incredible Hulk”, turning green and shredding my pants out of anger and frustration, until I morphed into “that parent.” The know-it-all-in-your-face-pain-in-the-ass-parent. For the first few weeks of[…]

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Fact or Hairsay?

  Hair, why must you be so unruly? I spend far too much time, money and effort taming, smoothing and styling you. I am NOT your personal fluffer thank you very much.   How often do you wash your hair? Daily? Twice a week? How about NEVER?   Alex admits to not having used shampoo in a year.  She’s gorgeous and her hair looks great. As I showered this morning, scrubbing bubbles and god knows what else into my scalp, I wondered, “Can I forgo shampoo?”   Shelli, another shiny haired babe shared this interesting link:  The Dirt On Getting Beautiful Hair: Stop Washing It.   It makes sense, but it brings me back to the time I tried to give up deodorant. It lasted two days. Two stinky days. FYI, those deodorant crystal things do not work, but they look lovely in the garden.   If I don’t shampoo daily, I end up looking like my hair has been painted on, like a ceramic doll. I’ve heard if you stop washing your hair or at least don’t wash it as often, your scalp adjusts and eventually stops overproducing oil. But, I worry that if my hair is left to[…]

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Bubbles For Zack

Many of my friends and family who read this blog have asked how Heather, Zack’s mom, is doing. I can’t assume to know how she copes on a day to day basis, but the Heather I see is courageous and kind. She is an amazing mother and friend and one fiercely determined lady. She is moving forward one day at a time, but she never forgets to look back.  Heather was on CBC television recently speaking eloquently and thoughtfully about the loss of  a child and she continues to share Zack with us through her writing. This weekend our family attended “Zack’s Family Dream Day” at Lionel’s Farm. This is one of the many fundraising events spearheaded by Heather. This day was intended not only to raise money for Zack’s Dream Room, but to honour Zack’s memory by spending time with friends and loved ones at a place that meant so much to Zack and his family. Heather took a few minutes away from her “farm duties” and spoke. She expressed her gratitude to those who helped make the incredibly successful day a reality. She also shared her thoughts about the day, and about Zack. She said the only thing[…]

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Words About Wonderland

My son and his best friend both have June birthdays. This year they gave each other passes for Canada’s Wonderland, an aptly named theme park just north of Toronto.  Life is too short for long line-ups, hence springing the boys from school yesterday to avoid the crowds. I’m all truant like that. As a teacher, I happen to know the last days of school are fluff. Besides, I made the boys answer math questions in the car ride on the way up. We arrived at the park at 10am and stayed until closing. We definitely got our money’s worth. The kids’ energy was endless. My energy had an end, but as corny as it sounds, the joy on their faces kept me going. I welled up twice watching their excitement. I’m getting sappier in my old age or possibly, I had heat stroke.  Ten Tips For Making Your Trip to Wonderland Extra Wonderful. 1. Do NOT buy your tickets at the park. If you plan on going more than once, get a season’s pass when they are offered in the spring at the lowest rate. Otherwise, buy tickets online and print or purchase at Shopper’s Drugmart for a reduced rate.[…]

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PANCAKEZzzzzzzz

PANCAKE POACHER..CAUGHT IN THE ACT!   Some mornings it takes a good hour for me to fully regain consciousness. In the meantime, I slog through the a.m. routine in autopilot; Get up…get dressed…wash face…feed dog…rouse kids…and stumble toward the kitchen, with one eye on the coffee pot and the other on the clock, trying to determine how late we actually are. (Depending on how far apart the coffee maker and clock are, this can be relatively painful).    As I check my email, a morning ritual which takes no more than a few minutes (I’m not that popular) I contemplate breakfast. Ah breakfast that sweet, welcome break to the nightly fast. When my brain and body are a little more sluggish than usual, cereal with bananas and yogurt and a teaspoon of Salba is the best I can muster. But, if I’ve been on the ball the week before, I can reach into my freezer to retrieve some freshly frozen blueberry pancakes, thus earning respect and adoration from my breakfast lovin’ children. If you’re making pancakes or waffles for the family on the weekend, triple the recipe. Flash freeze extras on a cookie sheet (so they don’t stick together), then[…]

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Glue Ear Can Be A Sticky Situation

We’ve been down the ear tube road (or should I say canal?) before. I wrote about it here. It was a success and Avery’s hearing and speech improved immediately and dramatically. Now two years later, the initial tubes long since gone, Avery’s speech has taken a nose dive. We had her hearing re-tested and she failed, but not by much. We decided to put the tubes in again and the ENT doctor suggested the adenoids be removed as well. Adenoids may obstruct the Eustachian tubes, so removing them may prevent “Glue Ear” from reoccurring. Under normal circumstances, the patient is sent home the day of the procedure, but I asked if we could CHOOSE to stay the night? Sleep apnea, seizures and potential heart issues made coming home immediately afterward a scary prospect. The doctor thankfully agreed that having her monitored for the night would be wise. So last week we checked into Sick Kids hospital. Some of us were more excited than others. Clearly Avery has NO fear of hospitals. Perhaps her brother has played a part in her feeling safe and secure around the medical profession? Avery was taken to the OR without complaint. She simply waved and[…]

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C is For Cookie and Also Catastrophe

“I don’t bake, I bakery.” This is a line I use often and for good reason. My cookies crumble, my loaves are listless, my cakes are lopsided and my pies…well, I gave up on them ages ago. I “bakery” them. Thank you Costco for your behemoth pies that serve 24 people, if you indeed decide to share. *coughs and wipes pie crumbs from chin* It’s also more expensive to buy ready-made. Plus who knows what preservatives and lardy bits are hidden in store bought goodies? So, in an attempt to be more budget conscious and increasingly healthful-ish I’ve been baking. Are you laughing? You’re totally laughing. And you SHOULD be because watching me work a sifter or rolling pin is laughable. Picture flour everywhere, sink piled high with greased up cookie sheets, dough on the floor and on the dog, swearing, lots of swearing and sometimes, smoke.  However, I’m proud to say I have mastered the art of oatmeal cookies. In fact, my last batch was not merely edible, it was downright tasty. How amusing that my son was beyond excited to offer a cookie to his friend. “My mom made these,” he announced with pride. And then there’s my[…]

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Take A Dip In Our (Cess) Pool

Yesterday it was a sweltering 40 °C, so after school the kids were excited to come home and cool off. I made them virgin strawberry daiquiris with swizzle sticks and paper umbrellas and we clinked our glasses and toasted to the summer ahead. Then my sweaty children put on their swim suits, lubed up with SPF and took their slippery selves for a dip in our brand new pool!!! Exciting, I know. You were probably super jealous just reading that. You may also have been thinking, “Wow, how can they even afford this aquatic luxury on their stupidly tight budget??” Ok fine, this isn’t our pool. I don’t know these people. But I want to…  THIS is our new swimming pool. You are welcome to come take a dip with us any time, Hilly Billy style! But here’s thing, kids don’t CARE about luxury or keeping up with the Jones’. Give them a bucket, some water and a hose and they’re coolio. So move over kids, mama’s comin’ in! Cannon ball!

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