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Mothers and Home Depot

Posted by Mattie on Oct 15, 2010 in Motherhood

I just got home from Home Depot. I spent almost 2 hours looking for fixtures and matching light bulbs. You can use this for that and that for this. They need to have a special customer service person that deals with mothers and only mothers.

We have so very little time and so many other things to do. As soon as I walk in there, I feel like 100 pounds has just been dumped on my shoulders. I guess I could send my husband, but external light fixtures need a woman’s touch.

Sure the handy man knows what to do or where to go or is afraid to ask. But not me! As soon as I walk into Home Depot, I want someone to take me by the hand to every aisle that I need to be, none other. I don’t mind walking. I don’t need a chariot.

Then, I want to know everything there is to know about the products that I need. Then, I want to leave as fast as I got there. And, I do not want to come back to return merchandise.

Thank goodness my kids are in school now. I used to do my chores with my kids and that was an insane experience. I always brought home the wrong product!

Now, I need an electrician…

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Mothers and Canadian Thanksgiving

Posted by Mattie on Oct 12, 2010 in Motherhood

Another Thanksgiving has gone by. It is a nice holiday at a good time of year, setting the stage for Christmas. I use this holiday as a summer wardrobe cut off. By now I need to start putting away that summer mode and dress for the new season.

I grew up in Montreal, so dressing for the season is what we do. I currently live in North Vancouver, which means dressing for a season is optional. But that is mostly the weather’s fault. Enough about fashion.

Since I am first generation Canadian, we never really appreciated Thanksgiving dinner as a family holiday. It was a three-day weekend. A freebee. Coming from a large Greek family we did big dinners for Christmas, New Years, Easter, and on a regular basis. We didn’t need a reason to make us all sit together to eat. We did it as a custom.

Now that I live across the country from where I grew up, I miss that. I am not sure that we would still have those big dinners. Each family has gone its own way. I miss those first generation years.

Now that I have my own family, we still don’t do the big Thanksgiving dinner, except it is not that big. My husband is an immigrant from England so he never had to say thanks to the pilgrims. All in all my kids are in my own childhood boat. I don’t think they missed it when they were younger as they didn’t know the difference.

Once they got into elementary school and the teacher would ask who had turkey this weekend? They would ask me what did we eat for Thanksgiving? My reply would be something like “steak or hamburgers”. Slowly, I figured we needed to get into the Canadian tradition of saying thanks.

Since my mother has moved here, she likes to do a proper Thanksgiving dinner. Except the kids are young and none of us really like leftovers. So my mother and I have decided we will do a whole chicken. The kids won’t know the difference. And, I won’t have to deal with the leftovers.

They funny thing is that when we finished dinner, my husband said to me; “That was good turkey.” I guess it really doesn’t make a difference as long as we all eat together.

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Mothers and Ice-Skating

Posted by Mattie on Oct 10, 2010 in Womanhood

Today I took my kids ice-skating. Although, it is not my favourite thing to do. I do like to skate with my kids. They huff and puff all the while the skates are being put on. If only they were old enough to tie their own skates. But, I guess once they start tying their own skates, they probably won’t want to skate with me anymore. A Mother never wins.

Skating is a funny sport. Mostly because it isn’t easy the first few times kids try to learn. Since I grew up in Montreal and we skated at park in the winter the way kids play in parks in the summer. I feel kids miss out on a winter activity if they never learn to skate. So we skate, whether they like it or not. And, every once in a while I get a good chuckle every time they wipe out. Only when they are not looking, of course.

But they do like it. Once the actual skating begins. The cool air on their face, the wind in their hair. Except kids wear helmets these days, so they never really feel the wind in their hair. I am all for helmets, but the wind in your hair sure feels nice.

There is so much complaining before and after. I am too tired. Which of my friends is going to be there. They’re too tight. My hands are cold. I am bored. When can we go home? Can I have a treat? Hmmm….

Complaining drives me nuts. I know when I don’t respond they eventually shut up and accept their circumstances. But why, why do we have to go through this ritual over and over again.

When I was a kid, we skated at Beaver Lake, in Montreal. Our toes were frozen, our skates were either too small or too big. Nothing was perfect and we all were so happy to be out having fun. We never complained. My parents would never put up with the crap I put up with.

But then again, my parents never skated with us.  I guess I know deep down that one day, my kids will look back and hopefully appreciate all the friggen time I have spent with them.

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Mothers and Costco

Posted by Mattie on Oct 6, 2010 in Womanhood

I just got back from Costco and I think this is the best place on earth! It is amazing for a mother to shop here as everything I need is in this warehouse. Within an hour and a half I can have everything that I need for the month. And a kitchen sink!

What I love about Costco is the efficiency as well as the prices. I can have my photos developed while I shop for chicken and underwear. The parking is enormous so I don’t have to feel squished between cars. And there is always a spot no matter what time I get there. No pressure.

The only thing that bugs me about Costco is the actual shoppers. I never wear open toe shoes, as I am afraid some aggressive person who is short on time is going to decapitate my toes.  Then, I have all of the hungry people who want every free sample in the store and leave their buggies everywhere while they decide if they liked the sample so that they can get another. Move over or move along.

The cashiers are so fast that it is hard to tell if they have done anything wrong. Since everything is scanned, it would be my mistake, no theirs. I always try to budget under $300, but it is so hard when every item is at least $7-$12. Lucky we have an extra pantry and fridge/freezer to store everything.

I consider Costco to a surreal shopping marathon. It is physical work to load everything into your trunk and then into your house after spending a lot of money in a short period of time.

But once I get home I have everything I need, except for dinner.

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Mothers and Blogging

Posted by Mattie on Oct 4, 2010 in Womanhood

Some one asked me why I like blogging. Well, there really isn’t one reason. I like writing. I would have kept a journal except my handwriting is awful and keyboards are awesome. No more calluses on my middle finger.

I think it all started when I couldn’t stop talking to myself and my children got old enough to walk into my bedroom or the bathroom (I like talking to the mirror), and asked who was I talking to? And, as they got older, why was I talking to myself?

I told them that I was just thinking out loud. Sometimes it is easier to think that way, when so many things are going on at once. The truth is that I was starting to boil over and needed to release some of my stress.

Once my talks to myself started to calm me down, it allowed me to laugh at current situations, as well as myself. I realized that I am not alone in this boat. Why not share my experiences so that other mothers don’t feel so alone. And, maybe start to laugh at them selves, as well. None of us get it right all the time. Most of us need to just get through the day without losing our minds.

Survival and humor is the motivation behind this blog. Hopefully you will laugh at the madness that we all go through on a daily basis.

Here we go…a day in the life of a mummy gone mad.

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Mothers and Hangovers

Posted by Mattie on Oct 3, 2010 in Womanhood

I went out last night. I think I had three drinks but I don’t really remember past 3. I suspect that I had more to drink than I ever had. I remember having fun. I remember going to the bathroom and then I remember laying in my bed …what the fuck was I thinking?

Have I lost my mind? When I was younger, much younger having a hangover was funny. Who cared? I lied in bed all day Sunday and then went back to work Monday. So the cycle not only began but also continued. My only responsibility was too myself and so what if I slagged off.

The feeling of my head exploding over and over again is no longer amusing. I bet getting older has slowed my metabolism and not only do I not bounce back, I bet that I have gained 3 pounds.

Then there is that caffeine effect. The more I drink, the more I stay away, just as I want to sleep. So I have I feel everything from my stomach sucking the life out of me, my head exploding all the while I am spinning out of control in space. Sleeping off this madness would be nice, but those days of passing out are over. The punishment of getting older is that you have to be awake during your hangover, no free pass.

Lying in bed all day Sunday is not longer a possibility, as my kids need to come and say good morning at 7 am. And, they want to know what is for breakfast. Breakfast? I think that I am going to throw up!

All day long my kids wonder what is wrong with mummy? Is she sick? Do we have to take her to the hospital? They look very worried.

I don’t make it a habit to get drunk, but sometimes it is fun. Mothers work hard and they need a release. Unfortunately we have little eyes watching us and learning from us, so we have to be presentable most of the time.

I decided to tell my kids that this is what a hangover looks like. Sure everyone likes their wine, but too much will hurt you. And I, like any other person in the world has made a mistake and here I lie with the consequences.

So listen up kids. Have fun with moderation or pay the piper.

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Mothers and Velcro Shoes

Posted by Mattie on Oct 1, 2010 in Motherhood

The other day I went shopping with my kids to buy new shoes. School has started and they need new running shoes that fit. Buying shoes should be fun for ladies, but these kids are so picky.

After finalizing the agreement of going shopping, which entails cooperation and no candy what so ever, we were off with the understanding that shoes will be bought today.  Now that they are old enough, they should be able to get through a relatively short shopping experience without having to be bribed. Relatively short happens to be in their hands. I will make sure that the shoes fit, they have to agree upon the style.

Here we go…

I am a fan of not many cheap shoes and few good shoes, because they have growing feet and they have growing feet. After taking about 15 – 20 minutes to find a style that they liked, it now became impossible to find shoes for school age children with friggen laces! They have the fancy ones that look like they have laces, but they don’t tie up. There were more shoes (over size 12) with Velcro than with proper tie up laces.

Call me old fashion, but how are kids suppose to learn to tie their own laces if they don’t have any? How are kids supposed to be vibrant, when they can slip on their clothes without any effort like a senior citizen? How are kids going to take care of themselves and feel good about their personal achievements when they don’t know how to tie their shoelaces?

I can’t believe how ridiculously hard it was to find a good pair of shoes with proper laces.

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Mothers and Tolerance

Posted by Mattie on Sep 29, 2010 in Womanhood

The other day I wanted to go to an exercise class and my kids were home. They didn’t want to stay home alone and my mother didn’t want to baby-sit.

So, I decided to take them to the class. The class is actually a gym so there is plenty of room for them to hang out in the back, play their Nintendo games and not bother any one. Let me just explain before I continue that kids are not allowed at classes for liability reasons. My kids are old enough to behave. And that’s is good enough for me.

I decided to get to the class just as it was beginning, just in case my kids were itching to get bored.  As soon as this older lady (probably in her 60’s) saw my unassuming kids she muttered “kids” under her breath as though there is something wrong with them.

I was so surprised that not only was this hag bothered by the sight of my kids, other women came and moved their handbags away from where my kids were sitting. What did they think? That my kids were going to go through their bags like preschoolers or maybe steal from them.

I was floored at what I had witnessed within 5 minutes of arriving at the gym. How does anyone expect children to grow up and respect their elders if their elders treat them disrespectfully? Aren’t we as a society suppose to give people the benefit of doubt before we hang them?

I explained to my kids that they had done nothing wrong and that some people are just not nice. We stayed and my kids enjoyed watching the class. I enjoyed having them there, as they did not bother me or anyone else.

I would have enjoyed my class better if my weight would have accidentally slipped out of my hand and hit that hag on the head! But I guess I need to set an example of tolerance.

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Mothers and the NOISE!

Posted by Mattie on Sep 28, 2010 in Motherhood

The worst thing about being a mother is the NOISE. That awful sound that kids make when they are tired, wired and bored. I can change poopy diapers all day long. I can even deal with getting in my car 20 times a day, just to drive 5 kilometres.

But when my kids start bickering, squealing and thumping around the house, I feel like I am going to loose my mind. I feel like some one has thrown my head into a washing machine of symbols, violins and drums. I feel like the thin straps of sanity holding me together are deteriorating and snapping one by one!

I can only attribute this to the fact kids are inside the house TOO much. I try my best to kick them out, but it rains here a lot and in the summer it is too hot. The best place for fresh air is in the forest with its natural canopy to shield them from the rain or hot sunshine.

But who wants their kids roaming around in the woods by themselves? With sickos waiting for a kids to slip up. Not me. I know that I am overreacting, because the stats tell me so. But how could I live with myself if something happened to my children?

So we use electronics to keep our kids busy today. They have learned how to embrace technology in a way that I will never achieve. So I guess that is my justification.

Sometimes we go to the mall. At least the kids are moving.

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Mothers and Mornings

Posted by Mattie on Sep 27, 2010 in Womanhood

Good Morning!

Every morning I creep out of bed. I get my socks and bathrobe on to maintain the body heat I had in bed. Not only do I not like to get out of bed in the morning, I especially don’t like the cold feeling of getting out of my warm bed to take on the cold harsh world of getting my kids to school.

The first thing I do is slowly and quietly go to the kitchen to get coffee. We prep it the night before, so that it is ready when we wake up. I know that isn’t the freshest way to drink morning coffee. But when we look at the pros and con of fresh coffee versus immediate caffeine gratification. Fresh loses.

I am always hopeful that my kids are still asleep. The thought of dealing with anything before I am completely coherent can destroy my day before it even begins. I bet you think that I am exaggerating, but until you see me first thing in the morning without my coffee, you have no idea of the madness that lurks inside of me.

I have this chair in the living room that I go to with my coffee. I sit still and slowly let the caffeine do its job. While sitting there I zone, or maybe we can call it meditating. I reflect upon the day’s agenda and any other thing my mind needs to go over. I call it free time for my head. Thoughts may come and go without any interference from me.

The funny thing is that I sit so still that when my kids come downstairs, they can see me, but they don’t even notice me. I wonder, do they need their “alone time” also?

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