Archive - July 2013

1
If You Give A Kid A Pancake…
2
Pony Prank
3
Six Super Ways To Make Summer Sizzle
4
John Cicada
5
Summer Snipe Hunt
6
Miscarriage
7
STRESS BUSTERS FOR CHILDREN
8
Our Family Computes
9
Puzzled
10
Mum, Mum, Mum, Mum, Mum, Mummy, Ma, Mum…

If You Give A Kid A Pancake…

….they’ll eat it.    And if the kid happens to live in my house, they’ll probably eat five.   And if they eat five you’ll feel satisfied that you’re filling them up, especially if one of your kids generally eats like a bird.   And if you add veggies to the pancakes, you’ll high-five yourself and sleep better at night knowing that your anti-veggie children have unwittingly ingested a healthy serving of vegetables that day.And THIS is why I’ve been making triple batches of fluffy pancakes and adding a variety of fruits and veggies to the batter. My kids not only enjoy them for breakfast, but also eat them cold as a snack — great to grab-and-go on busy days, road trips and any time your brood is feeling peckish (not a chicken pun despite the photo above).    But what to add to your fluffy pancakes? Any combination of: grated carrots, apples, berries, zucchini, cucumbers, sweet potatoes… totally up to you. Sweet vegetables work best for traditional “breakfasty” pancakes. Veggies like green onions, broccoli, spinach (leftovers from a stir fry dinner perhaps) are tasty, but stronger in flavour and make a more a savoury pancake.  Recipe: “Fluffy Pancakes” Yes,[…]

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Pony Prank

  My brother and his family just moved into a spectacular new country home. A horse fence surrounds the field where the former owners kept their herd, but the horses have been replaced by dogs, a cat, and the occasional meandering deer. Jokingly I said to my brother, “If you were a GOOD uncle, you’d get your niece a pony. Just a little one?” Since the horse barn has now been converted into my brother’s workspace (his business is booming) sadly there’s no room for horses. Not even a little one. Imagine my surprise today to see two little ponies running through the field outside the kitchen window. Ponies!!!!!! The kids and I ran out to greet them with a friendly, “Hello neighhhhh-bour!” The ponies from a neighbour’s farm broke loose and appeared in the yard, grazing between the trampoline and the swimming pool. They got spooked and ended up on the lawn near the front door. I was tempted to lure them inside the house with a carrot. But instead I took photos and oohed and awwed at their cuteness and then shooed them back toward the field. The owner eventually came to fetch them. Then I texted this[…]

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Six Super Ways To Make Summer Sizzle

Minus the 44 degree scorchers when your skin basically melts off your skull, summer is my favourite season. Fresh air, green grass, picnics and plenty of time frolicking in the sun and sand…. how can you go wrong? (Again, minus those alarmingly hot, humid, tornado-threatening days that reek of imminent armageddon.) As soon as the sweaters come off and the t-shirts and shorts go on, we head outside to soak it all in. Well, as much as one can soak in wearing 50 sunblock. Six Summer Activities That Make The Season Extra Spectacular: 1. Splashing…in the pool, at a splash pad or at the beach, fun with H20 is one of the best parts about summer. It’s also the only time of the year you can tell someone to “go jump in a lake” without causing a rift. 2. Snapping photos….Avery takes her Kid-Tough digital camera when we go on hikes or a walks around the neighbourhood. You never know what or who you might capture on film. #PintSizedPaparazzi 3. Strolling and Rolling… summer is the season for getting out and about. A walk with grandpa along the pier or a trike ride to the end of the drive-way all[…]

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John Cicada

  Any opportunity to pick up an insect and my daughter takes it. Grasshoppers, worms, moths, ants. Last week it was a wasp. The fact that it stung her hand didn’t stop her from picking up a bumble bee the very next day. Yesterday at the park Avery and her dad met a sickly cicada. They named him John. Here’s what happened when they tried to rescue it. I wonder if Buzzfeed will pick it up? 😉

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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[…]

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Miscarriage

This story is about a baby conceived, but never delivered. It’s about the thrill of finding out you’re pregnant, and then disappointment you feel when suddenly you’re not. It’s about miscarriage, but it’s also about chickens and abysmal record keeping. Random, but related. When my husband and I found out we were expecting our first child, we were overjoyed. I knew I was pregnant only days after conception. I just knew. A pregnancy test confirmed it and I went to the doctor for a blood test to be sure. We told our families right away because that kind of excitement just can’t be contained. We made plans, discussed names, researched strollers. I couldn’t wait to share the happy news with my class of grade two students, but I decided to wait the obligatory three months—which never came. At nine weeks I miscarried. We went through the usual panic—trying to fix it, trying to stop it, trying to save it. Of course you can’t stop nature’s course. Mother Nature is stubborn. She does what she wants, when she wants, for reasons only she knows. My husband called my work to say I would be off the next day. I needed a[…]

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STRESS BUSTERS FOR CHILDREN

Stressed may indeed be dessert spelled backwards, but it’s anything but sweet. It’s just the opposite — it’s sour. Or is that bitter? Whichever one, as my friend would say, “Stress can go suck a bag of ducks.” This handy new catch phrase was born from an Autocorrect. I have no idea what it means, but I try to use it at least once a day because it makes me laugh. And laughter is the best stress reliever, right?   I have a tendency to let stress build, but I’m working hard to learn how to manage it successfully and I’ve written about the steps I’m taking to kick my Worry Wart Ways.  Lately I’ve seen burgeoning signs of stress/anxiety/worry in my eldest child. Nothing terribly alarming, but significant enough to pay attention.  “Fifty per cent of adults diagnosed with mental illness reveal its start before the age of fourteen. It is imperative for parents, caregivers as well as teachers to recognize stress in early stages and support the child affected.”  My son seems to worry like his mother. Is this something for me to worry about? (I am aware of the irony here.) Perhaps it’s merely a phase. Either way, we’re[…]

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Our Family Computes

    A family that blogs together, stays together? Maybe. Mom blogs. Dad blogs (sometimes). Son blogs. Daughter types her name and her spelling words. Her blog is surely imminent. 😉   I’ve been on my own this week. Hubby has been away at a teacher conference and I’ve been home with the kids — for their first week of summer vacation. Days spent at the beach, road trips and summer adventures have been put on hold. Yes it’s summer, but as a work-at-home mom, I still need to meet deadlines and get the job done.    Balance. That’s what I strived to find this week…   Family helped out and I am grateful. As well, my son played with his sister every morning so I could check off a few things from my to-do list.    And the newest tactic — one that seems to work for all of us — is “working” side by side. While I work on my computer, the kids work on theirs, all of us together. Not gonna lie, there were constantl interruptions…comments and queries such as, “Mum, how does this look’!” and “Listen to this!” or “How do I save?”and “Holy sh*t. I[…]

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Puzzled

Rain, rain, go away, come again another day…and bring Tylenol. And four extra sets of hands. And a bag of patience. And a box of pinto grigio. Yes I said box. And a bucket of ice cream. And a bag of something salty — anything, I’m not picky. It’s summer, it’s soggy, and the natives are growing restless. Thankfully my kids are rather creative natives. This morning I found them in my daughter’s bedroom doing a puzzle. I didn’t question their methods. I simply took a photo and reversed quietly out of the room.

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Mum, Mum, Mum, Mum, Mum, Mummy, Ma, Mum…

  Like a blonde, curly haired broken record, my daughter gets stuck on repeat. Actually, she must repeat in order to learn. Genetic testing has revealed that our child is missing specific genes linked as the cause of mental delays specifically related to memory. Children learn by mimicking and remembering. It takes Avery much longer to commit a concept to memory, so she must repeat. Repeat. Repeat. Repeat. Repeat. She’ll watch the same television show over and over. This includes Max and Ruby. *stabs parental eardrums with pointy stick* She also repeats phrases and songs, the ABCs, names of the people she knows and places she’s been and many, many other things. We understand the importance of her rehearsing these concepts. Strangers do not. It’s somewhat amusing to watch the reactions Avery gets when she says, “Bye man!” a dozen or so times to the same guy at the grocery store. Most people will actually return or at least acknowledge each one. Bless their patient hearts. I try to redirect her though, to spare these busy people the last six or seven farewells. Most of the time these repetitions are necessary. Though sometimes she repeats herself out of habit or because[…]

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