Friday, 28 October 2011

Who Needs Hallmark?

As you should all know by now, our Alice is getting hitched tomorrow.  I have therefore spent the last week  babysitting thumper and stressing out over finding the perfect wedding present for the perfect blog partner.  I believe I have finally accomplished that feat.  As part of my perfect present, I wrote Alice the follwing in lieu of a mass produced greeting card and thought I would share it with our extended Mommyland family this week in honor of our Bride-to-be.  So pour a glass of wine and hold it high as we all share a gulp to celebrate Alice becoming an honest women:)

Dear Alice:
Screw Hallmark.  I refuse to pay ten bucks for some Alice- or-Wendy-wannabe to spew bullshit about how love blooms eternal, just for said card and all my witty hand-written comments to end up under some used condoms in the trash can.  So instead I invested my ten bucks in Mommyland by purchasing this journal for you to use to record all those angry Alice rants that we love so much and, I hope you don’t mind, I have borrowed these last few pages to record my wedding wishes for you.  
That being said, before I get to the wishes I would like to take a minute to explain my choice of wedding gift.  I have come to realize that wedding gifts are not like other gifts.  While you may quickly forget about/hide/re-gift that Snuggie you got for Christmas, the green and orange veggie dip tray that you get for your wedding will haunt you for the rest of your days.  It is simply impossible (for me anyway) to get rid of anything that I got as a wedding present.  Not only do relatives and friends expect to see the trinkets they bestowed upon you proudly displayed when they visit, but I have developed this weird sentimental attachment to the stuff.  It’s as if somehow I believe that keeping that four-foot fairy statue is essential to my continued wedded bliss.  Go figure.
Anyway, this is why I have spent so much time debating what to get you.  At first I was going to get you a toaster because that is the chronically cheesy wedding gift and I thought you would appreciate your blog partner, who is not at all cheesy (insert sarcasm here), getting you the classic wedding appliance.  But then I thought no, I don’t want Alice and Dawson associating me with burnt toast and, by association cheesy, yet informative Canadian Heritage Minutes. 
Next I considered a dirt devil, since I know, as a fellow mom, how convenient and necessary these things are, but I didn’t want you to think I was subtly trying to tell you that your house was dirty.  And I really didn’t want you nicknaming my children after that appliance (appropriate as that may be considering that, if I had got it for you, you would have had to whip it out after every time we visited).
So I continued my search.  I wanted something that wouldn’t become obsolete, or shoved on some dusty shelf to be forgotten about until the day Thumper (or more likely Prince) threw a basketball at said shelf, scaring one of the nine lives out of your cat and forcing you to wear shoes in your house for the next three months in order to avoid getting tetanus shots.   So in the end I settled on a punch bowl.  I figured anything made for using with alcohol wouldn’t have much time to gather dust at your place (if only because I will force you to use it at our blog meetings).  Plus – bonus- I thought this particular punch bowl resembled a fishbowl enough for you or your friends to use during, as well as after a big night of partying.  Or you could always just buy Thumper some goldfish.  Whatever.
My point is, during the millions of days of wedded bliss that I am sure you and Dawson will have, you can use this punch bowl/fishbowl to celebrate big movie premiers, getting published somewhere besides on our blog, and golden anniversaries.  And when you do, maybe you will spare a moment to think about that crazy blog partner you had once-upon-a-time who never did figure out how to use commas correctly.  But don’t worry, if you forget I will most likely remind you via a sharp kick under the table and a raised eyebrow.  Then we will both raise our glasses in a silent salute to the best wedding present ever. 
But right now I would like to thank you.  Not only for including me in this amazing day, but for taking the time to answer a poorly written ad on Kijiji, and then actually agreeing to pursue my crazy suggestion that we do a blog together.  You have taught me so much about writing, Mommyland, and Mommyship that I feel as if a punch bowl is a very insufficient way to show you how grateful I am.  So I got you the journal too.  But seriously, I can’t tell you how much having a girlfriend nearby has meant to me. 
So do I wish that you and Dawson have a life of full of happiness, live as long as you want, and never want as long as you live?  Hells to the yeah.  Do I wish that, as you slide down the banister of life the splinters never point the wrong way?  Damn straight.  Am I going to babysit when you need to keep the home fires burnin’ with some afternoon nookie?  Maybe, if you ask nicely and return the favour.
Bottom line:  Enjoy your day Alice, and every day that follows.  May you always find patience in your belly button, love in your heart and Dawson in ‘the mood.’
Suck that Hallmark!

Editors note:  As I was writing this post, Alice texts and asks me if I have a punch bowl she could borrow.  Seriously – am I good, or am I good?

Wednesday, 26 October 2011

Survivor: Mommyland - Celebrity Edition

Since CSI Mommyland ended up being so entertaining I began to wonder what other shows could benefit from a change of locale.  The one that immediately came to mind was the reality show that started reality shows, Survivor.  What would it be like if, instead of dropping random people on a deserted island for 31 days, the producers put a group of Moms alone on an island for 31 days?  Better yet, let’s make it Celebrity moms!  Ok, Shut up.  It’s been a slow week and I have been watching way too much TV, so just go with it.  Anyway, here is what I imagine Survivor: Mommyland – Celebrity Edition to be like...
(Insert Jeff Probst Voice Over Here) 39 Days, 16 Celebrity Mommies, ONE... Survivor!) 

Tsaerb Tribe                                       Anigav Tribe
Octomom                                            Kelly Ripa
Gwyneth                                             Tina fey
Nicole Riche                                       Madonna
Kate Hudson                                      Kate Gosselin
Heidi Klum                                          Angelina Jolie
Katie holmes                                      Jennifer Lopez
Britney Spears                                   Jenny McCarthy
Alison Sweeny                                  Rosie O’Donnell

Day One:  The mom’s arrive and are overjoyed at this chance to escape from Mommyland, win money for their charity and be named the ultimate mommy survivor.  Many view it as a vacation instead of a game of survival.  “No diapers, soccer practise, screaming children, or 2am feedings for 31 days, while tanning on a beach – yeah, I can handle that.  Seriously, we have the easy part – you should really go film our husbands trying to survive without us.”

But this cheery outlook soon darkens, at least for the Anigav Tribe.  Kate Gosselin quickly takes over, dictating how to build the shelter and criticising everyone constantly.  Kelly, Tina and Rosie quickly form an alliance, with Rosie promising to bring in Madonna as their fourth, while Angie, Jen and Jen are too busy sun-bathing to worry about strategy. 

At the Tsaerb Tribe, Nicole Riche is upset when she breaks a stiletto during their hike to camp.  Gwyneth quickly organizes the tribes efforts to build shelter, goes hunting, finds fresh water, starts a fire and has a gourmet meal ready by the time the tribe has finished building their three-story tree house shelter.  That evening on a supposed bathroom break, Gwyneth also manages to use her super-mommy powers to find a hidden immunity idol in the pitch dark – “After years of going on evening hunts for my kids blankies, it was a sinch.”  After the tribe has gone to sleep, she wakes Katie and Heidi, show them the idol and form a secret alliance of three to take to the end.

The next day at the first immunity challenge, the Tsaerb tribe won immunity after wrangling, dressing and transporting 8 kids from a local tribe to soccer practise.  Although Anigav quickly copied Tsaerb’s strategy of having 4 moms wrangle 2 kids each and the other four working on car seat installation, Anigav descended into chaos when Angie smacked Kate upside the head for criticising her car seat technique.  Needless to say, at tribal council the vote was unanimous and Kate Gosselin got dumped once again.

After getting rid of their most antagonistic member, Anigav came back stronger than ever and won the next challenge.  After much debate the Tsaerb tribe sent home Nicole Riche over Octomom because Nicole had been having breakdowns about how this experience brought back too many bad memories of her time on The Simple Life, and although many members liked her more than Octomom, the fact that Octomom was able to provide them with a steady supply of milk gave them an edge in challenges.

Tsaerb then got their mojo back while a rift began to form in Anigav.  Jen, Jen and Angie were getting annoyed with Rosie’s sometimes outspoken nature, but soon came to realize that they did not have the support to vote her out.  This sent Angie into full-on villain mode, where she set in motion a plan to make Rosie look bad in the other’s eyes.  She stole extra rations at night and left crumbs by Rosie’s bed, stated vicious rumors and even went so far as to sabotage her in their duck-duck-goose challenge.  This caused Anigav to lose the next 2 challenges where Jenny McCarthy and eventually Angie herself went home when her shenanigans were exposed.

After losing an exhausting challenge where the ladies had to see who could hold the most bags of groceries for the longest, Tsaerb lost their momentum and finally succumbed to Anigav.  This couldn’t have happened at a better time for Anigav as this week the losing team had to vote out two members.  With a merge looming, Gwyn was able to convince her team to finally vote out their milk supply, as well as the strongest competitor, Kate Hudson. 

To the disappointment of Anigav, the merge did not happen yet.  They were forced to compete in one final immunity challenge involving building snow forts (with snow flown in from the Antarctic) and eliminating the members of the other tribes by hitting them with snowballs.  Anigav lost despite their advantage from Rosie and Madonna’s skills from A League of Their Own due to Kelly being injured after taking a snowball to the eye. 

Back at camp after the challenge, JLo convinces Tina, Rosie and Madonna to vote out Kelly next due to her injury.  In return, she promises to back them in the upcoming merge.  Despite last minute scrambling on the part of Kelly, and assurances that she can still compete with an eye patch, the tribe sent her packing.

After pulling of an amazing come from behind win at the challenge and receiving a reward of spending a day with their kids, the Tsaerb tribe was feeling great.  Gwyn reassured her group that despite being close in numbers for the merge, she was sure they could pull ahead because she believed she could swing her good friend Madge over to their side.  Feeling very confident, they headed to what they were sure was a merge.

Was the merge really around the corner?  If so would Gwyn be able to get Madge on side?  Or is Anigav stronger than they seem?  Find out in the finale of Survivor: Mommyland, Celebrity Edition, next Wednesday in Mommyland.  


Friday, 21 October 2011

The Book of Mom-some

I just read the Book of Awesome, which, need I say it, was awesome.  However, as the author of this witty tome was male and (as far as I know) had yet to procreate, he was unable to include in his work the many awesome mommy-related moments (to which I apply the label of Mom-some), that, in my opinion are the best kinds of awesome moments.  Sure, scraping all the lint off an overflowing lint trap (which is an actual entry in the book of awesome) can bring one a certain satisfaction, but how does that compare to sticky baby kisses?  I rest my case.
So I decided to take it upon myself to fill this void of Mom-someness.  Because, let’s face it, Mommyland is a whole other world where the regular, mundane awesome things are often eclipsed by super-fantastic, tear-inducing, melt-your-heart super Mom-some moments that deserve to be recognized in their own right.  Such as:
When you tell your kid(s) to do or stop doing something and they actually listen
Maybe it was your tone of voice.  Maybe all those time-outs are finally starting to pay off.  Or maybe you are just so freaking amazing that your kid knows better than to mess with you.  Oh the power!  That’s right, you said it, and he did it.  You did not have to get off your ass or put down your cup of coffee.  You did not have to throw yourself between two sprawling, yelling, wrestling tiny tots and take a finger to the eye in order to stop the mayhem.  A word was enough.  You my friend are ... Mom-some!
When the baby waits until he is with your spouse to have a crap
We have a rule in our house – if a kid craps on your time, you have to clean it up.  That’s right, you smelt it, you felt it, you clean it.  So when you just so happen to time it so that 10 minutes after passing off the baby to your husband the kid lets one rip, sit back, relax and at know that that is one dirty diaper you don’t have to deal with.  Mom-some!
The feel of chubby arms around your neck
 Sure you hug your kid all the time but that cannot compare to when they really hug you back.  I mean, grab on, shove their face down on your shoulder, almost strangle you with the insane strength of their puny baby arms kind of hug.  In my opinion there is no more heartfelt “I love you – thanks for cleaning my smelly bum” moment than this. Mom-some!
What is that sound?  Oh yeah, it’s peace and quiet.  I almost forgot what that sounded like.  Now excuse me while I go curl up on the couch and catch up on some Ellen.  Mom-some!
When your kid(s) sleep in
You wake up and all is quiet.  No one is screaming or yelling “MOMMY, WAKE UP!” You crack an eyelid and there is no one starring back at you sucking their thumb and demanding breakfast.  You open your other eye and glance at the clock.  8:15. SWEET!  If this is the first time this has happened you may tip-toe down the hall and crack open the baby’s room to make sure they are still breathing, but once you have confirmed that your baby hasn’t been kidnapped and is in fact still roaming through dreamland, you run down the hallway with a goofy grin on your face, dive back under the still warm covers and revel in the fact that the sun is up and you aren’t.  Hey, you might even have time for some early morning nookie.  It doesn’t get more Mom-some than this!
When a kiss fixes everything
Whether it is a case of scraped knees, bumped noggins or simply sore egos, when a kiss from mom dries all the tears and brings back a grin, take a moment and celebrate the fact that you just fixed someone’s entire world.  Yes, your love is that powerful.  How Mom-some are you??!
When your kid(s) ask for more vegetables
What was that?  You want more broccoli?  Sure!  How about some cauliflower with that?  Who cares if this is the first vegetable you ate in a week – it still warrants tweeting the following:  “MY KID IS EATING VEGETABLES!  I am amazing, I am super-mom, and I AM MOM-SOME!”
This is by no means a comprehensive list.  The life of every mom is filled with Mom-some moments, but the sad thing is many of them pass by unnoticed.  We are so privileged to be moms; yes, it is easy to forget this fact when your ears are still ringing from the piercing shrieks erupting from your little bundle of joy, but the fact still remains.  There are many women out there who are unable to experience the joys of motherhood, not to mention all the men out there who will never know the joy of feeling a life growing inside of them.  What are a few poopy diapers compared to that?  So grab on to each Mom-some moment as they come, enjoy it, celebrate it, and know that you are more than awesome – you are MOM-SOME!

Monday, 17 October 2011

Things I Wish I Knew Before Being on a Reality TV Show

That’s right people.  Your Wendy is a TV star!  Well, I don’t know if being on a Canadian cable TV reality show would make one a TV star, but at least I should qualify as TV space junk.  I told you TV was going crazy!
As my episode has now aired, I am finally allowed to blog about my experiences in front of the camera.  But first let me say that although the show will have aired by the time this is posted, it has not yet aired at the time I am writing this.  Therefore, while all of the crazy shit I am about to tell you totally happened, I am not sure how much/which parts of the 18+ hours of filming we did will be included in the 22 minute final product.  So please know that even if you did not see some of what I am about to describe to you, it definitely took place.  And if you did get to see these events unfold, all the better; maybe you will finally believe that I actually did get banned from Boston Pizza... and the park... and the grocery store... I could go on, but you get the point.
Our adventure started back in April when, ironically enough, I was writing my TV is Slowly Going Crazy post.  One evening my husband came to me with a newspaper article in hand about a new TV show that was looking for couples to participate.  Knowing me as he does, he then used a combination of reverse psychology and flattery to convince me to write the essay required in order to get an audition.   Apparently I am a better writer than I think I am because the casting agent called us next day.   Either that or they were just desperate.
The show itself takes regular people (supposedly me and Edward) and presents them with two different investment opportunities.  Before you fall asleep, I`m not talking boring old stocks and bonds, people.  I am talking horse racing, wine collecting, comic book selling, and celebrity charity event opportunities.  We picked one and invested our own money in it, while the host of the show (a semi-famous ex-dragon you might know) invested his money in the other investment.  The cameras then followed us and the entrepreneurs through the next 30 days, at the end of which time we found out how much money everyone made.     What more could you want out of a TV show?  It even has a catchy opening theme song!  
So bust out some popcorn and margaritas and settle in cause here comes the Things I Wish I Knew Before Being on a Reality TV:
1.  My go-to babysitter was going (back) to work – Damn you Alice for wanting to be all productive and not in debt.  Couldn`t you just feed your kid Kraft Dinner and shop at Value Village like the rest of us?  If you had only forgone your career I would not have had to creep the contact information of the people I met in the line at Tim Horton’s just to send out mass emails begging for a babysitter.  I would like to formally apologize to all those whom I annoyed by sending out an incessant barrage of increasingly pathetic babysitter requests.  I hope that my new-found TV space junk status will make you want to give me a second chance.  I would also like to thank those 2 friends who had pity on a friendless, relative-less out-of-towner and took on the task of babysitting my kids (we all know what a dangerous task that can be).  I thank you from the bottom of my heart; and don’t worry- you are not the first people my children have tricked into putting them in the fridge, and I am sure you won’t be the last. 
Unfortunately, there were at least two occasions for which we could not arrange to have someone watch the kids.  Hence how my children ended up at our on-camera lunch meeting with the entrepreneur we chose.  For those of you who may not be familiar with the calamity that results when you attempt to confine a 3 & 1 year old to a 4ft area for more than 5 minutes, let me explain we were lucky that the only incident that took place was when Simba suddenly disappeared under the table in a manner reminiscent of Wile E. Coyote falling off a cliff.  If you watch the footage closely you will probably see the little puff of smoke and everything.  As you can imagine, this caused me to immediately jump in the air throwing Prince off my lap and sending French fries flying through the air in order to retrieve my other,  now accordion-shaped, child from under the table.  So the next time someone begs you to babysit for them, take pity and help them out or else they may also end up with a child that resembles a musical instrument. 
2.  Never let a makeup artist put lipstick on you against your will.  And do not try to make conversation with your makeup artist while they are ‘making’ you.  Otherwise you may accidentally insult said makeup artist by telling them what a cute grandchild they have when the child in question is in fact not so grand, and you WILL end up looking like the whore of Babylon.   Oh, and while we are on the subject of appearances, always make sure that your outfit looks good from behind – you never know when your husband will make a dramatic exit and you will be forced to chase him down, thereby revealing your mom-bum to all of America.  I swear it was the pants, people.  I actually have a very nice ass.
3.  Prince is allergic to Amoxicillin – If only I had known this tidbit of medical data prior to shooting, I would have made sure that he wasn’t prescribed this medication 2 days before we were set to shoot the kids scenes, thereby rendering him very itchy by the time the big day came.  Aside from constantly having to reassure the crew that he did not have chicken pox, and shoving mittens on his hands between takes, it worked out pretty well in the end.  He ended up receiving the Gemini award for his performance of a non-itchy child in a reality show and he is now in talks to be in the next Tom Cruise movie. 
4.   My husband is a Drama Queen – Apparently I have been forcing Edward to watch too many episodes of The Bachelor.  The very first day of filming he pulled a total Gia move and stormed off set, not once but twice.  I am still unsure what happened to so upset the man who doesn’t bat an eyelash at having his living room destroyed by pint-sized hoodlums.  But if you look closely at my face when he leaves, I am pretty sure I am smiling because I totally expected Ashton Kutcher to jump out from behind the door and tell me I had just been punked.  But let’s look on the bright side – I may not have got to meet Ashton, but Edward is now up for a role on Days of Our Lives.  And sorry Ashton, but I’d rather hang out with E.J. Dimera anyway.
Due to the already exceptional length of this post, I do not have time to tell you about all the many other things I learned from this experience.  For example, never quote country songs when there is a camera pointed at you, wait to drink the free wine until after you do your on camera interviews and don’t drive a Benz if you want to convince people you need more money.   But don’t worry, I won’t let all this fame and fortune go to my head.  At the end of the day I am still the same ol’ Wendy who has to change poopy diapers for a living.  Now I just have to fend off the paparazzi while I do so.  Ah, being TV space junk is not all it’s cracked up to be...

Friday, 14 October 2011

Does Anybody Have a Delorean I Can Borrow?

Where are Michael J. Fox and Christopher Lloyd when I need them?  I don’t know what has been going on lately, whether someone has been messing with Daylight Savings Time again or if the world has just started rotating faster, but I can no longer find time.  For anything.  From exercising to brushing my hair, everything that is non-essential (and lots of things at are essential, like pooping) no longer fit in my schedule.  Unless someone can hook me up with a time machine fast, I am worried that the next thing to get trimmed from my schedule will be putting on pants.  And that would really suck because of all the time I would have to waste explaining to the police what I was doing at Wal-mart in my skivvies. 
 I thought, as moms, we were supposed to have more time on our hands as our kids got older, not less.   Last month when Prince started preschool I naively assumed that I would have 4 hours, 3 days a week to spend writing posts, cleaning toilets, and finally unpacking the last of the boxes from our move last year.  But no.  What with the 14 minute drive each way to his school, the time it takes to get Prince dressed, packed and otherwise presentable, and the fact that Simba is going through a rebellious napping phase, I figure that I have actually lost 2 hours of time from my schedule. (Note:  naptime is supposed to take place while Prince is at preschool - I thought I was a mommy-genius for this scheduling manoeuvre ... but once again my plans have been foiled by pint-sized procrastinators).
As a last ditch effort before petitioning the United Nations to insert more hours into the day, I have closely examined my schedule to try and pinpoint areas in which I can save time.  Here is what I have come up with:
1.  I will no longer wait in traffic.  Last week when I went to Alice’s wedding castle (yeah, she was telling the truth people – it is pretty awesome) it took me 40 minutes to go 5 city blocks.  There was no accident, Robert Pattinson was not in town, and, miracle of miracles, there was no construction.  There were just way to many effing people trying to get the hell out of the city at 4pm on a Tuesday.  I refuse to waste my time thusly anymore.  From now on, when confronted with traffic I shall affix one of those magnetic sirens to my roof (which I plan to acquire through Kijiji), bust out a megaphone (which I plan to acquire likewise) and have Simba scream into it until people drive up on the sidewalk to let us pass so they no longer have to listen to the racket that I am forced to listen to when stuck in traffic for 40 minutes with a screaming 18 month old.  
2.  Cooking meals.  Why in the world have I been spending hours preparing meals for my family to have said meal either thrown on the floor or inhaled without chewing?  If that is how the fruit of my labours is going to be treated than screw simmering, mashing, roasting or any other of those other labour and time intensive cooking methods – frozen pizza it is!  My family will never even notice the difference.  Let’s face it – they would probably consider it an improvement – my cooking really sucks even when I do spend time on it.  Julia Child I am not.  Damn it, I ain’t even Ronald McDonald.
3.   I will no longer wait at the doctor’s office or in checkout lines.  I have had an epiphany.  All those hours I have spent desperately trying to amuse my children while waiting for a multitude of ridiculous things has been in vain.  After a recent doctor’s visit when I simply did not have the energy to stop my children from screaming, wrestling and basically making the other people waiting seriously consider sterilization, I found out that if I let my children run wild, people are much more willing to let us go first just to get us the hell out of there.   Now I take my kids to the doctor’s even when I don’t have to – apparently someone needs to let the government know about this method of shortening wait times.  
4.  Cleaning.  No matter how much I clean, the next day (or, more often, the next hour) it’s dirty again.  This goes for all kinds of ‘it’s’ – clothing, floors, dishes, toilets etc...  I figure, since we are not even unpacked yet from the last move, we will just use this house till it gets too dirty and then move again.  In the long run, this will probably be less work than cleaning 14 (thousand) times a day.
If this plan succeeds, I will finally be able to catch up on my backlog of laundry and PVR’d Ellen’s.  However, like so many economic stimulus packages, while this may look good on paper, in actuality it will probably result in legal troubles and a lot of little people going hungry.   Therefore, if anyone has a Delorean at their disposal, I beg you, let me borrow it.  I promise I won’t mess with the Space Time Continuum – ok, I may make a quick detour with Alice to find a teenage Tina Fey in order to befriend her and have her cast one of us instead of Lindsay Lohan in Mean Girls.  But other than that, I promise only to use its powers for good.  Meaning I will use it to make sure that I bathe on a regular basis and remember to wear pants.  Not that a Hoverboard wouldn’t come in handy though...

Author's Note:  If you do not understand my blatent references to Back to the Future you are either not old enough to have children (and hence be reading this blog) or were in a coma for the majority of the 80's. Either way, go watch the trilogy - if nothing else, it will give you a (fairly accurate) idea of what the world will be like in 3.5 more years.  Personally, I am looking forward to the self-drying clothing... it will save on laundry, you know.

Monday, 10 October 2011

Facing the Giblets

Sometimes it really sucks living far away from your family.  Ok, basically it is just on holidays when you are forced to cook your own turkey that it really sucks.  The rest of the time I am kind of grateful that my crazy Aunt Sue can’t just drop by to hand out condoms anymore “just in case you ran out dear.”  But on holidays I would gladly trade all forms of birth control for a relative who can cook.   
As I currently don’t have so much as a third cousin in the vicinity, this year, for the very first time, I was forced to cook my own Thanksgiving turkey.  Sure, this may not sound like a big deal, but to me the point of Thanksgiving has always been to be thankful that someone else had to cook that gi-normous meal so that I would be able to bask in the glow of my turkey coma afterwards instead of cleaning up for three hours.  Yet once again, Mommyhood cracked the rose-colored holiday glasses to reveal the devastating truth – It is now my turn to take up the Thanksgiving mantel or else have the holiday perish for future generations.  I don’t know if I am ready for this kind of responsibility people.
But, ready or not, Thanksgiving was coming.  So with hope in my heart and a cornucopia on the table I went out and bought (ok, got for free) a twenty-two pound behemoth of a Turkey, because, if I damn well had to do this whole Thanksgiving thing, I was going to do it right!  A pumpkin pie, a box of Stove top and a can of cranberry sauce later I was feeling mighty fine.   Then I remembered the giblets.
I really don’t understand the purpose of giblets.  I especially don’t understand the purpose of storing them inside a turkey.  Why not just sell them separately and save me the torture of having to shove my hand up a half-frozen dead bird's ass in order to retrieve something that looks like what an alien would give birth to?  So what if some people like to use giblets in their stuffing?  Why not just can your giblets and access them the way we were meant to get at our food – with a can opener?  Or better yet, just bag your giblets and put them in the freezer section.   Honestly, I don’t care what you do with your giblets, but don’t put them in my damn turkey!
I will spare you the details of the giblet extraction that took place.  All I will say is I am very thankful this Thanksgiving for Ziploc freezer bags and tongs.   After this stint in (what felt like) turkey gynocology, I admit I was forced to crack open a bottle of wine even though it was only 1pm.  Hey – don’t judge me - if you can manhandle giblets without being forced to drink, then you are made of tougher stuff than I.
With the giblets gone and wine in hand I stood back to view the perfection that was to be my first turkey.  Then I realized it was upside down.  Minor detail.  Upon flipping it over, I discovered the painful truth – I had a disabled turkey!  I had already thrown out the packaging by this point so I was unsure if it had been raised in the aftermath of the nuclear disaster in Japan or whether it was simply maimed by a rouge tractor on the farm, but my turkey only had one wing!  I felt so bad – think of the bullying it would have had to endure from the other turkeys – and to think I had ever criticized its giblets!  Well, I was determined to make my Charlie Brown turkey feel special by making it the centre piece of the best damn thanksgiving dinner ever!
With fire in my belly and the giblets in the garbage, I set to work.  By my hand potatoes, turned into whipped mountains of buttery goodness, gravy flowed like post-natal menstration* and vegetables of all kinds bowed to my every whim.   The cranberry sauce practically jumped out of the can, so eager was it to be part of this feast.  Finally, all was ready. 

*Editor's note: Your gravy flowed like what?? I don't think I'll be having gravy at Wendy's anytime soon. -Alice
I ushered my (non-extended) family to the table and presented them with the fruits of my labours.  As Simba threw his food gleefully about with reckless abandon while screaming at a pitch only mothers and dogs can hear, and Prince proceeded to eat three helpings of stuffing and nothing else, I realized that to my kids, this was just another Monday night dinner.  And what I truly needed to be thankful for was that my parents (and Edward’s parents for that matter) were not here to witness it, because if they had been, the only thing they would have been able to come up with that they were thankful for this year was living so damn far away from this craziness.  Let me tell you, when you have a male version of Shreeky from the Care Bears seated next to you at the dinner table it is kind of hard to appreciate the flavourfulness of your handicapable turkey. 
Anyway, as I sat amidst the chaos that was my Thanksgiving dinner I realized that Thanksgiving is highly overrated.  Maybe it would be more special if we were farmers and actually had a harvest to celebrate.  Maybe it would have been better if I hadn’t been forced to cook a turkey in 30 degree (Celsius) heat (thank you global warming).  Maybe, if we had relatives to distract the children, they wouldn’t have decided to coat their heads in cranberry sauce.   Who knows?  All I know for sure is that next year, if no one will come visit us, I am going to start the tradition of giving Thanksgiving presents, which I can use to manipulate the kids into behaving through dinner.  And hey, what kid wouldn’t love to get a box of giblets?!  Waste not, want not, people.
Happy Thanksgiving!

Friday, 7 October 2011

Wendy’s Wisdom: On Messes...

I don’t know why, but for some reason people seem to want my advice.  Maybe it is because they now know I have superpowers.  Maybe it is because Gwyneth Paltrow (a.k.a. Megamommy) won’t answer their emails.  Or maybe they just really like Peter Pan.  But whatever the reason, I feel like it is my duty as a dedicated blogger to answer the queries that are sent my way to the best of my abilities. 
As I have written so often about the messes I have been forced to clean up, I thought I would dedicate this first instalment of Wendy’s Wisdom to Messes – the mortal enemy of Mommies everywhere.  That being said, I have taken the liberty of makeing up some fictional queries so as to better demonstrate how I would solve some common household conundroms.  Again, let me state that all characters appearing in this work are fictitious. Any resemblance to real persons, living, dead, or somwhere in between is purely coincidental.  I swear people, I have not been spying on you through your computer. So, without further ado:

 Tattoed in Toledo writes: “My 2 year old somehow managed to get his hands on a pen and drew all over his face and scalp.  Shampooing hasn’t helped and I don’t want to use anything stronger on his head.  What should I do?”
Wendy’s Wisdom:  Have him wear a hat.  Then connect the dots on his face and give him a beard.  He will be the most popular kid in his kindergarten.
Tie-dyed in Toronto writes:  “My 6 month old is the messiest eater ever!  Bibs are no help – he still ends up with food down his shirt, on his pants and even smooched in his socks.  What is the best way to get the stains out of his clothes?”
Wendy’s Wisdom:  Try Scissors.
A Patron of the Arts in Pitzburg writes:  “My daughter just went all Picasso on our new beige faux suede coach!  Help!”
Wendy’s Wisdom:  Flip over the cushions.  Then call your grandma and see if she can lend you her plastic couch cover.  Tacky? Totally.  Necessary?  Hell ya.
Mrs. Clean in Kelowna writes:  “I don’t know why kids prefer to color on the walls, and I also don’t know how to get rid of the mess!  What would you do Wendy?”
Wendy’s Wisdom:  Paint.  Or just make your kid keep coloring until he has covered the entire wall.  Whatever’s easier.
Lactose Intolerant in Louisiana writes: “My daughter spilled chocolate milk all over our white carpet!  How do I get rid of the stain?”
Wendy’s Wisdom:  Rearrange your furniture or buy a mat.   Or train your dog to lay there when company visits.   Or if you don’t have a dog, douse the rest of the carpet with chocolate milk till it matches, though the funky smell may tip off your guests.

Yes, I know, my housekeeping skills constantly amaze me too.  As the specific questions sent in did not allow me to divulge all of my housekeeping wisdom, I thought, in closing, I would share these golden nuggets so you can all have a house as clean as mine:  “Poop always comes out in the (2nd or 3rd) wash,” “You’re never too old for a bib,” and “When in doubt, throw it out.” 

You’re Welcome.


Wednesday, 5 October 2011

Random Acts of Weirdness

Apparently a side effect of motherhood is random acts of weirdness.  Last night as I lay on my son’s bedroom floor, thinking about how rough the poly-blend material of his carpet felt against my cheek, I realized just how ridiculous I looked at that moment.   Who would understand why I was lying face down on the floor next to my son’s crib at midnight, holding a facecloth and trying not to breathe too loudly?   Even my awesome blog partner Alice would need to hear an explanation for this one, though I am sure that in the end she would be grunting sympathetically (yes, us mom’s often grunt as a form of communication– it is something we have picked up from our children).
Anyway, this got me thinking about some of the other ridiculous/crazy/weird moments I have found myself in recently.  For example, yesterday morning around 10am you would have found Alice and I wearing tiara’s and matching princess shoes, holding hands and dancing in a circle while singing ‘Part of Your World’ from the little mermaid.  Are we Bat-shit crazy?  Yes.  Do we secretly wish to be princesses?  Totally.  But was this performance necessary to keep our children from self-destructing and destroying Alice’s house.  Hells to the yes.
 A few weeks ago, if you had snuck into my backyard, you would have found me in the kiddie pool with my kids, fully dressed and pretending to swim like a mermaid, which is not easy considering the pool is only 4 feet wide and I am 5’8”.  In my defence though, it was 40 degrees Celsius at the time, I hadn’t showered in three days and was sick and tired of doing laundry. But yes, I am pretty sure this is one of the reasons my neighbours don’t speak to me. 
It’s even worse when I am forced to act like a kindergarten-teacher-on-meth in public.  Like yesterday when Prince begged me to sing “The Wheels on the Bus” LOUDLY while we were walking to the park. But that wasn’t as bad as on the way home when I had the Sesame Street theme song emanating from my ass (thank you iphone – I apparently need to rethink keeping my phone in my back pocket).
Then just this evening when Edward came home he found me and the kids lying flat on the living room floor, seemingly starring at the ceiling.  While at first he was scared that we had finally succumbed to my bad cooking, everything made sense when Prince yelled out “BEEP, BEEP, BEEP – Time to get UP!!”  Yes, we were playing naptime, which I highly recommend BTW.  Just make sure you ‘sleep’ with one eye open because your children will eventually jump on you, thereby forcing you to play ‘doctor’ as you check for internal bleeding and try and figure out a way to force your stomach back down your throat where it belongs.
My point is, do not judge mother’s on their random acts of weirdness.  Trust that whatever crazy shit we are doing is necessary for either our sanity or our children’s.  Either that, or we are simply too exhausted to realize that our shirt is inside out, in which case, just smile and keep moving because we really don’t need to be embarrassed any further by you pointing it out.  Though if we aren’t wearing pants, you should probably let us know.  Thanks.