My sons have been running summer lemonade stands for years. Their first was on Canada Day 2005 when they were four and one. There were no signs, just two very little kids sitting at a green IKEA table, the top scattered with paper cups, a pitcher of over-iced, weak lemonade, and a jar of change on the ground beside the bright blue chairs.
It was incredibly hot and, for an hour, I stood holding an umbrella over their heads. Sales weren’t big that day, but they did learn a valuable lesson in marketing.
I've lived through enough March Breaks to know we parents sometimes set the bar too high. We get ideas on Pinterest and Facebook and we are determined to make this the BEST MARCH BREAK EVER.
As someone who has now survived (and thrived) through ten March Breaks, take it from me - the kids don't remember the perfectly painted crafts or the carefully planned outings so much as they remember the little moments of laughter and how you let them sleep in a fort made of blankets and cushions - a fort they created on their own.
It was not a conscious act on my part; I did not set out to reclaim these memories of my childhood. It was a gift.
It was a typically typical trip to the park. They were off—running, laughing, pretending, fighting, making up—and then off and running again. I was on the bench, reading, occasionally glancing up to watch their antics or when they wanted my attention. “Mummy, look at me! Did you see that? Are you watching? Look what I can do.”
I don’t know about you, but I’m at the point where I’m afraid to turn on my computer. I used to pop onto Facebook while having my morning coffee to see what was happening with my friends, but now my news stream is filled with crappy stories that leave me with a pit in my stomach.
A year and a half ago, we brought home a new member of the family on a bright, sunny Saturday morning. Her name was Ella, and she was a 7-week-old Golden Lab puppy.
We had never had a dog before, so I wasn’t sure what to expect, but I had seen enough commercials and happy puppy videos to know that there would be laughter and cuddling and joyous naptimes and enough Instagram moments to start an entire new account.
When my boys were seven and three I came up with the bright idea to sign us up for a 5k run through our local zoo.
In my head the scenario played out something like this:
My older son and I would run 5k through the zoo while my husband and younger son waited to cheer us on as we crossed the finish line and then we would all spend a lovely day at the zoo creating memories that would last a lifetime.
On one point I was correct. We created memories that day but none of the warm fuzzy stuff I thought I’d be creating.
In the "I thought nothing could surprise me anymore" category I came across this article today at Time Out New York. Staff writer Jillian Anthony did an informal poll through her social media channels and it turns out 39% of people are masturbating at work.
My first son had a tumultuous journey coming into the world. Everything that could go wrong with my labour and delivery did and he quite simply didn’t want to come out. When he finally made his entrance, he looked around for a few minutes and then fell asleep. He was, in fact, such a great sleeper that my husband and I got cocky and would pat ourselves on the back for being such amazing parents. “What’s so hard about this?” we asked as we chuckled. This pattern continued as he grew.
Just this morning we received a cheeky pitch from a company that makes and sells skin whitening cream for the intimate areas of your body that include, but are not limited to, (and this is taken directly from the website:)
Parents often try to balance the ‘gimmes’ of the holidays with giving back. We want our children to appreciate what they have while teaching them about what other people don’t have. We want them to understand that life isn’t about what you have, it’s about how you make others feel. And we want to do all this amidst the frenzy of Black Friday shopping, toy commercials, and our kids writing out lists of what they want for Christmas. Sometimes lists that are longer than they are tall.
Nobody expects to get in a car accident. I know I certainly didn’t when we left the house on a sunny Sunday afternoon to go to my mother-in-law’s house to celebrate Mother’s Day. But less than a kilometer away it happened.
Ten years ago I was dropping off my son who was only three – too young in my mind – to begin his first day of school.
Even with the staggered start the scene was chaotic. Cars parked in the kiss-and-ride area, kids unwilling to go into the schoolyard, grabbing onto their mom’s coat with a steely grip, while others ran around the fenced-in playground yelling and playing.
Back-to-school for our family means back to busy. I have two boys going to different schools, both with two very different schedules. Add in my older son who trains in a specialized sport four days a week, my younger son who does an extracurricular activity twice a week, and, you know, that whole pesky business of my husband and I having to work. Most nights are a bit of a gong show.