Wednesday, February 28, 2007

Asking for help today

I decided to try and write a little something for Today's Parent magazine. They pay $200 if they publish your article on (what else?) parenting. So I thought what could I lose by plumping up something I already have (they need 750 words and I tend to write about 200) and sending it in.

I blame you guys for encouraging me to keep writing and inflating my ego so much that I'm thinking there's no possible way they could deny me. Yup, thanks for that.

Anyway, what I'd like from you all is some advice as to which of my blogs is worth working on. Which has potential? Which is your favourite? Don't forget I've been blogging for over a year so there's lots of gold to choose from. Any one make you burst out laughing? Remember that it has to be about parenting so it can't be one of my many many self-indulgent navel-gazing blogs. I really need some help if you have the time.

Email me at or just reply here. Let me know the blog date or the subject and I'll take it from there. Thanks in advance you guys!


Tuesday, February 27, 2007

This made me laugh

As a mother of a 5th grader myself, the concept of the gameshow "Are You Smarter Than a 5th Grader?", is fascinating. Short answer? No. I'm humiliated to admit that Elliott's math is already past me and his English is right on the cusp of my knowledge. I mean parallelograms and trapezoids? Come on. Dangling modifiers? Yikes. Helping him with his homework I'm stumped half the time. And the cherry on the sundae? It's in french. Woo.

It's amazing the sheer volume of information you forget once you leave grade school. You tend to retain the basics... the alphabet, how to write, multiplying single digits in your head (quick! 7x7? See!) but the rest goes by the wayside. How many people need to remember the capitals of all the provinces and territories on a daily basis? Quick! The capital of Nunavut! I know you know it's Iqaluit.

Anyway, try to watch the show tonight. It's on at 9:30pm on FOX and is sure to be good for a laugh if not humble you down to your core. I missed it last night as I was gorging myself on all-you-can-eat Indian food. What's that? The population of India? Ummmm... lots? Thank God for Google.

kxx (1.1 billion)

Monday, February 26, 2007

What I loved about the Oscars

JLo's dress
Ellen DeGeneris's hosting job... loved the photo she made Steven Spielberg take and the fact she gushed like a fan all night

The opening montage by Errol Morris
Jennifer Hudson winning best supporting actress
The fact that I got 13 out of 24 categories right

What I hated about the Oscars
Can they be any longer? *insert annoying Chandler Bing inflection here*
The nude lipstick trend. It's dress-up time, girls. Let's see a bit of colour on your lips
Jennifer Hudson's silvery shrug. At least she got rid of it by showtime
Jack Nicholson's "hair"
The animated characters in the crowd

So I watched the whole thing from the start of the red carpet stuff at 6pm until it was over sometime around 12:30am. I only took a catnap during the "deaths of the year" montage, waking up when the "winner" was announced. You know what I mean... the dead guy with the loudest applause. Hey, I forget who it was, I was half asleep.

So all in all, pretty good. No big surprises, no political statements (although I loved when the band played off Al Gore as he was about to announce... something. Insert comedy wink here) and a great host. Boring but good. I enjoyed it.


Friday, February 23, 2007

Looks like another stream-of-consciousness blog, folks...

Sorry to do this to you yet again (I seem to have writers' block at least once a week) but that's the way my mind has been going this week. Let's see...

Oooh, the Oscars are on Sunday. I'm waffling between getting really dressed up and wearing my pyjamas to watch the show. I'm leaning more toward jammies. That way I can go straight to bed at 12:30 or whatever time it'll end this year. They sure do drag that show on and on and on and on...

The kids are busy going through their 500+ markers and throwing out the ones that are dry. Good thing, too... the sound of dry markers on paper sounds to me like fingernails on a blackboard. That I can take. The marker thing? Not so much.

When is springtime going to get here? I'm fed up with this monster cold and I've already started not wearing socks and painting my toenails in anticipation of flip-flop season.

I'm loving dragon-boat practices. They're at the local wave pool and besides having to squash my corpulence into a bathing suit, it really is fun to be near the water. But it also makes me long for the warm summer sun.

Well, hope you have a lovely weekend full of fun and rest. As for me, as usual I have the kids sports to sort out, work on Sunday morning, grocery shopping, baking and cleaning. Yup, fun and rest all around. See you Monday.

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Thursday, February 22, 2007

This is the title of my blog

This is the text of my blog.

Signing off,

kxx (can you tell I don't feel like blogging today?)

Wednesday, February 21, 2007

Haiku movie reviews

Okay, so Scott and I have finally seen all the movies up for Best Picture at the Academy Awards. They'll be given out on Sunday night and as a pop culture vulture, it's my Super Bowl. As a public service, here are my reviews. And to amuse myself, they're in haiku.

The Queen
Poor Princess Di died
The Queen was royally pissed
Helen Mirren rocked

The Departed
Lots of spies planted
Jack, Matt, Leo, Marky Mark
In a dance of death

Little Miss Sunshine
Olive is a star
Her family is all nuts
Rick James meets road trip

Many stories meet
In an obscure, bizarre way
Nude Asian girl. Whaaaa?

Letters From Iwo Jima
How did Clint Eastwood
Direct this in Japanese?
Neat but still boring

Our favourite movie was Little Miss Sunshine but we both think The Departed will win. It was the most accessible. Nevermind the brutal violence. I just want to say for the record that these aren't my genre. I'm an unapologetic romantic comedy fan. Case in point, my love for Music and Lyrics which I saw last night. An excellent teaspoon of sugar to make all the previous medicine-like movies go down.

A last review:
Hugh and Drew in love
May, December but still cute
Eighties tunes? Perfect!


Tuesday, February 20, 2007

I never did show you the photo we gave Scott for Valentines

Sorry for the quality but it's a photo of a photo. You know how that always turns out.

Oh, and ignore Henry's buck-toothed grin. He's doing that on purpose. The poor photographer couldn't get him to smile honestly no matter how hard she tried. And notice my hammerlock on him. He was seriously being an ass and I had to restrain him

Audrey on the other hand was a true "model". When she'd start to smile a fake smile, the photog would call her on it and she'd belly laugh in order to get something more natural. Watch your back Tyra Banks.


Monday, February 19, 2007

Well, somebody's off her meds

Poor Britney Spears. She's apparently lost her mind and is now fixing to mix it up with yours truly. After stealing my sound and my money, she's now stealing my image. Woman, what more do you want from me? What's next? A third child and a solid, happy marriage? You'd better watch your step, bitch.

I'm calling my lawyer...


Friday, February 16, 2007

A word of advice: Don't carry a half open box of Junior Mints in your purse

Scott kindly gave me a box along with a Cherry Blossom and some Twizzlers as part of my Valentines booty. Since I'm not much of a chocolate lover, the Cherry Blossom is still here and I had about 5 Junior Mints out of the movie theatre sized box. I closed it and put the rest in my purse to share with the girls at work. The perfect snack for the day after my deep cleaning procedure at the dentist, by the way.

Anyhoo, I made it to work with them, shared like a good girl but still had about half a box left. Again I "sealed" it and returned it to my purse. Fast forward to the bus ride home. I reach into my purse and grab my mp3 and find a minty smear across the display screen. Uh Oh. But being of the if-I-ignore-this-it-never-really-happened school of thought, I mentally shrug and reach for my book. Chocolatey smear on the spine. Realization dawns. My stupid box of stupid Junior Mints spilled open in my stupid purse and the stuff inside is getting all full of stupid chocolatey minty goop. Is there any wonder why I'm not a chocolate fan?

When I get home I assess the damage: Junior Mint guts on my wallet, puffer, aforementioned book and mp3 and about five minty bodies mashed and stuck to the silky lining of my suede bag. Sweet. Literally.

So lesson of the day boys and girls: Don't eat junior Mints. I mean, don't leave an open box of Junior Mints in your purse. Or messenger bags for you boys. Sigh.


Thursday, February 15, 2007

I'm trying to take the crunchy with the smooth

Crunchy: Dentist's appointment at 10:10. My stomach is in knots since I loathe going and they're doing something called a "deep cleaning" that requires 2 visits and copious amounts of laughing gas on my part. I'm seriously terrified. I can't believe I need this as I'm a rabid flosser just to avoid these procedures. Whatever.

Smooth: I decided to take the rest of the day off work. Hopefully I'll get home by noon and I'm getting right into my fugly sweatsuit and Padraigs. I'll be way too traumatised to do my job without whinging and I may even be swollen. No one needs to see that.
Wish me luck. Hopefully I won't need it.


Wednesday, February 14, 2007

Happy VD!

Well, no doubt about it. Scott loves me. We've spent 18 Valentine's Day together and he always makes me feel loved even between Valentine's Days. He's awesome. Look what I woke up to this morning:

Never mind that he used my newest lipstick in "Soft Cinnamon" to write it. The sentiment isn't lost on me. The man rocks. Have the greatest Valentine's Day ever. I know I will.


Tuesday, February 13, 2007

Observations on a cold morning

The alarm went off at 5am. The guy on the radio said it was -34C with the windchill. The little voices inside started screaming. One saying: "What the hell are you doing? Turn that thing off and stay in bed! You could sleep for another 90 minutes! It's way too cold out there! It's cold in here too! Even the floor is cold! Don't put your warm feet on it! The other voice says: "Get up you big fat pig! You lazy, corpulent, slug! If you don't get up RIGHT NOW you'll feel guilty all day! Besides when you are done with exercising, you'll be able to lord it over people all day! GET UP!! That voice always wins, thank God.

Random 5am thoughts:
*Padraig slippers are the best ones known to man
*The crescent moon is absolutely magical and my favourite stage of the moon
*When it's really cold, the snow almost squeaks when you walk on it
*Thank God for engine block heaters
*Your voice sounds way louder (and waaay better) singing Justin Timberlake in the car at 5:15am than at any other time of day
*Not a lot of people are on the number 96 bus at 5:15. Where are they going so early?
*The elliptical machine is the best thing since chicken nuggets. I can read a magazine, listen to music and watch tv all while getting a cardio workout. Genius
*I love doing boy pushups. They make me feel strong. I can do 30 now
*The sun is starting to rise earlier. At the beginning of the month it was still pitch black when I got home. Now there are these really cool pinks and purples in the sky. Nevertheless, sunrise would be so much more appreciated if it happened at noon
*Oooh, another sing-along! "Finally" by CeCe Peniston
*You know, I should blog this stuff when I get home...


Monday, February 12, 2007

I'd like to introduce you to the newest members of our happy home

Ladies and gentlemen I give you our 2 fish, Betty and Tiny Steve. They've lived all weekend and I thank goodness for that. Right now they're in simple bowls and I have serious doubts as to their longevity. If anyone has any tips to help us with that, feel free to post them.

What's with the names you ask? Here is the conversation that preceded their christenings:

Audrey: Mummy, what kind of fish do I have?
Me: A betta.
A: Okay, I'll call her Betty.
Me: Sounds logical. What about you, Henry? What'll be your goldfish's name?
Elliott: Maybe you should name it something to do with the sea.
Me: What about Jacques Cousteau?
Elliott, Audrey and Henry: WHO?
Me: Nevermind.
A: What about Nemo?
E: What's the name of that guy who just died?
The one who liked animals?
Me: Steve Irwin.
Henry: But my fish is too tiny to be a man.
Me: What about Tiny Steve?...
And thus the legend was born.

Hopefully they'll live out the month. I'm off to do an internet search to find out how to best take care of them. Happy Monday!


Friday, February 9, 2007

Busy Friday

The kids have today off so I do too. We have lots to do today and most duties involve the car. Scott usually takes it to work Fridays so first things first, we had to drive him to work.

Next thing we have to do is bake Valentine's cookies. I usually go nuts and make enormous sandwich cookies. One for every kid in all three kids' classes, each personalised with recipient names. This year as I'm now a working woman I'm just going to make pink heart shaped spritz cookies for the party and buying those cheap paper Valentines like normal mothers. It's very freeing not to feel the need to Martha everything up because I was a SAHM.

After the cookies, it's off to take care of Scott's Valentine's gift. He usually says no gifts then at the restaurant springs something on me. To me no gifts means no gifts for goodness sake. I always feel so bad. This year I'm doing the springing so the kids and I are off to the photo place to get a professional portrait done of the kids. Of course I'll throw one in of myself. It is Valentine's after all.

Then we're going to visit my friends at work. Actually I want to show my incredibly good-looking and well-behaved offspring off to my co-workers. It'll help that the kids'll be all scrubbed up and dressed well for the photo. There's a method to my madness.

Next it's off to the pet shop to buy the bribe, I mean reward for Audrey and Henry. I promised them both at the start of the month that if they could keep their rooms clean they could have a fish. Frankly I thought they'd tire of the whole thing but surprisingly enough they did it and now I'm obliged to buy them both goldfish. I also stressed that if their rooms got messy again I'd take the fish away and now they know I mean what I say so I'm predicting some dust-bunny free days in my future. I love it when people bend to my will...


Thursday, February 8, 2007

"She never let the truth get in the way of a good story"

My boss Dianne said that last week and it had me in stitches. I've got no blog to go with it but I had to share with the class.

Talking about work, I mentioned once that I eat the kiwi skin and they made me feel like a mutant. A few years ago I realized that my family did me a disservice by never peeling the hairy fruit. As far as I knew we were normal. Then I get with "normal" people and see that I'm a total freak.

To me the skin is what makes a kiwi taste like a kiwi. It's got a very tart flavour and neat texture that counteracts the sweet squishiness of the fruit. Deeelish. But apparently I'm like a monkey that eats the banana, peel and all. Something to watch closely with curiousity and a little bit of revulsion. In all my travels outside the family, I've never met another human being who eats the kiwi skin. There's got to be another person out there somewhere. Please identify yourself and we can be monkey-freaks together.


Wednesday, February 7, 2007

So what are you doing for Valentine's Day?

Scott and I have had so many Valentine's Days we've lost count. I've gotten everything from a red thong rolled up and stuck on a fake green stem to look like a rose (classy...) to a surprise trip to Paris, France complete with a treasure hunt to find my ticket (classy!).

After kids and life have taken their toll, a meal out without washing up or begging anyone to eat just one more bite of their cauliflower cheese is just what we need. So we're going out for dinner. We're going to my favouritely named Indian restaurant Cumin and Goan. Get it? Cumin the Indian spice and Goan meaning coming from the Indian state of Goa? Cumin and Goan? Coming and Going? It's so clever and plays to my goofy sense of humour.

We've never actually eaten there before, I fell in love with the name before I even set foot inside. Hopefully they do a chicken vindaloo which is my favourite dish. It's so spicy it tends to temporarily turn my insides to liquid. Crying, runny nose and other more unfortunate symptoms. Yum. Voluntary intestinal distress. It's what's for dinner.


Tuesday, February 6, 2007

I was fine until the kids came home...

Henry's crying in his room, Elliott just proclaimed that "this day sucks" and Audrey's irritatingly reading over my shoulder. I'd do anything to be back at work.

I have so much to do at the end of the day it's not funny. It's so much that I just end up watching tv and getting on the computer and doing nothing. In an ideal world, I'd come home from work, clean up the odd untidy spot then cook a delightfully complicated dinner which would be enjoyed by everyone. I'd help with homework and everyone would be happy and content and when bedtime came we'd all slip lovingly into blissful sleep.

But this is the real world. When I get home from work I have 15 minutes before the kids come home from school. I run around like a lunatic trying to simultaneously empty the dishwasher, clean up, put away pending laundry, pick up loose papers and have a little snack. When Audrey and Elliott get home I've done absolutely nothing. I get on the computer and try to blog in peace but there is homework to help with, grumpy tired school-hungover kids to deal with and supper to think about so it takes forever. Then someone is upset about not getting on the computer or getting on and it freezing (thank you Mr. Gates) or some such nonsense so I have to start with the firm voice. Then the yelling. Then I'm in a pissy mood and we end up with an afternoon like we have right here. Oh, and who can forget slaving over a dinner that everyone pokes at? Good times.

Well, I'm tired of having Audrey read this over my shoulder (and having to edit my curse words) so I'll leave off for today. Tomorrow I'll have something more insightful to say instead of whining and complaining and pouting. We'll get back to your regularly scheduled blog then. Enjoy the rest of your day.


Monday, February 5, 2007

Super Bowl? Super Hype

I used to watch it back when I lived in Montreal but I've been so disappointed with everything about it that I stopped. I prefer the CFL anyway. Three downs RULE.

Anyway, as usual, the best parts of the show... I mean game... is the half-time show (Prince, in a lackluster performance, I heard) and the ads. Since I missed the whole thing because Scott and I were watching "Little Miss Sunshine" on DVD (hilarious), I decided to take in the best parts online with no interruptions by the pesky game.

So, I give you Prince's performance and all the Super Bowl ads. My fave is the Kevin Federline ad. There's nothing I like better than a "star" that knows how to make fun of himself. Enjoy.


Friday, February 2, 2007

I knew it would happen one of these days

I got a speeding ticket. My first one ever since I started driving in 1999. I've never even gotten a parking ticket before.

I knew it would happen... I'm VERY aggressive on the road. It's interesting to me because I'm relatively level headed, calm, unstressed and happy in life. But put me behind the wheel and all bets are off. I become an impatient, cursing, angry beeyotch that I don't even recognise. I even call people names. This town has one of the largest populations of elderly in Canada and they all seem to be going 10kms under the speed limit directly in front of me. I tend to call them "Mémère" and "Pépère" (the french terms for grandma and grandpa). Put I never say it kindly. It's usually spat out in frustration like in the following sentence: "FOR FUCK'S SAKE DRIVE LIKE YOU'RE GOING SOMEWHERE, MEMERE!!" Also, try to picture me gripping the wheel with two hands, pulling and pushing on it. A favourite anger move of mine. One day I'm going to yank the whole column out, I swear...

So anyway, today I finally got nailed. The officer was in an unmarked car and I was just screaming at yet another Pépère to get out of my bloody way and passing him extremely aggressively and there it was. The lights in my rearview. At first I thought he was responding to an emergency and wanting to pass me. Then I realized the emergency was me. I thought I'd be scared or even cry when this finally happened but it was so cool. My first thought was "damn, I should have brought my camera".

The guy was really nice and even apologised a few times. He showed me the radar gun that said I was going 80kms in a 60 zone. He explained that usually it's $180 and 4 demerits but for me it'll be $40 and no demerits. Thank Christ. Scott would flay me.

We smiled a lot, apologised a lot and wished each other a good weekend when it was all over. How civilised. It was like we were two old friends meeting over coffees. Too funny.

It was an interesting experience to be sure, but one I don't want to repeat. And I honestly tried to be good on the way home but I swear all the Mémères and Pépères are conspiring against me. I just had to pass one or 2. It's not my fault. They force my hand. What's a beeyotch to do?


Thursday, February 1, 2007

Oscar extravaganza

So in case you weren't on the edge of your seat on the day the Oscar nominees were announced, go here. The only category that I like to voice an opinion about is the Best Picture. For years my best friend Kathy and I have been trying to see all the movies in the category so that we can make an educated prediction. Even though she was in the States at the time, we always saw the movies at about the same time and talked about them by phone. A few years ago she moved to England, unable to see all the releases and the whole process became totally unfun without her. Last year Scott consented to be my new movie companion (and it was actually fun) so now it's ON.

I like this because it forces me to see movies I'd not ordinarily see. I'm a romantic comedy fan and strangely they never seem to make the Best Picture cut. Shocking. Anyway, over the years I've been forced to see political movies, talky movies, subtitled movies, Middle Earth tributes and war movies. And most of them I actually liked (except for the Middle Earth stuff... I was completely baffled). So even I can grow...

Anyway, this year our selections are Little Miss Sunshine, Babel, The Queen, Letters From Iwo Jima and The Departed. I'm anxious to see Little Miss Sunshine and The Queen. I'm hoping to be pleasantly surprised by the other 3. The Queen is the first one and we're going tonight. I love packing in 5 movies in a month. The telecast is on the 25th so the press is on. My babysitter is happy ($7 per hour), the kids are happy (treats after dinner) and Scott and I are happy (5 date nights this month). Can't wait.

I'll keep you posted about my faves of course and have my second annual Oscar special blog the Monday after. And don't be shy about weighing in and letting me know what you think. Just remember that this blog is called Karenworld and all of my readers must bend to my will.