I don’t share my Smarties

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I have absolutely no shame about this. I keep a stash of chocolate that I don’t share with anyone. Especially not the kids, ’cause I don’t want them to get cavities and stuff you know. Every mom needs this stash of something just for her. A stash of her favorite thing that she should eat without feeling guilty. This time I got Smarties from Dollarama. 

I kept it in my coat pocket. Yesterday when I walked the girls home from school, I sneakily ate those candy coated little bits of heaven while muahahaing inside. I felt like such a rebel.

“Ha ha ha. I am eating Smarties by myself and you guys have no idea!” Evil Me said inside my head.

“Mommy are you listening to me?” Asked Twin 1.

“Of course I am honeybun.” I smiled innocently at her, Evil Me muahahad again.

If you want to keep your sanity while dealing with all the craziness involved in raising children you need to treat yourself often.

If you are married to a Desi guy you need to indulge yourself in some secret luxury everyday. While you slave over the kitchen on the weekends while he does nothing (Desi men don’t help with house work) you can secretly gloat over the fact that you didn’t wash his 10 pairs of jeans. You just threw them in the dryer with lots of fabric freshening sheets. Oh yes I did.

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“Muahahahaha!”

 

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I spent the vacation in my blue flannel pyjamas

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This is the only way to spend a winter vacation with a house full of rowdy kids. Wearing flannel pyjamas ( God bless the inventor of flannel). I planned on not taking them off (except to wash them). However husband refused to be seen in public with me wearing them, so I had to change to attend a couple of dinners and a wow birthday party. I think I could have pulled it off at the birthday party though, I mean Mickey Mouse was wearing his red pyjamas I don’t see why I couldn’t wear mine. Okay maybe they weren’t pyjamas, but they looked it.

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Since I already am a super mom(not bragging or anything) I became ultra super mom and baked an endless supply of cookies, brownies, apple pie, cheese cake and banana bread. My teenagers face-palmed as I took endless pictures of my creations. I was going to put them up all over facebook, but one of them had a delete-happy trigger finger.

I am now ultra super over weight mom.  Yes I had one cookie too many. I suspect that the cheese cake helped.

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Thanks to the ice storm we had great scenery and the hills were awesome for sledding. I hogged a whole sled to myself. I was the only forty-year old woman sledding down hills in the park.

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Nope no pictures of that! Next time I will convince husband to take a picture of me zipping down icy hills.

I did absolutely no writing at all. I did however keep the angry woman in my head under control. She really wanted to tie and gag the kids then lock them in the garage after the second day of the vacation. It is amazing how many things five kids can find to fight about. She was also tempted to hit the husband over the head with  a rolling-pin after his third day of vacation. It is amazing how much time husband can spend in front of the computer oblivious to the pandemonium his kids create.  I tied her up, gagged her and locked her in the garage.  I will let her out after I finish cleaning the gargantuan mess made by two heathen teens, three rambunctious under tens, one incredibly sloppy husband and a very lazy, blue flannel pyjama clad me. I know her fingers are itching to type out a story.

Spelling Bee

Twin One:  I asked Patchy (our cat) two questions and she got them both right!

Me:  Wow she must be a smart cat.

Twin One:  She is. I am smart too.

Me:  Yes I think you are pretty smart.

Twin One:  I can spell Birthday. I learnt it myself b-i-r-t-h and then d-a-y!

Me: (In the most impressed tone possible) Wow. That is great!

Twin One:  You know what else I can spell?

Me:  Tell me.

Twin One:  I can also spell  dog pooh. D-o-g  p-o-o-h!

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(Bee sticker photo courtesy of Twin One)

Where the Wild Things Are

Today is Maurice Sendak’s birthday. I have five wild things. I live where the wild things are. Wild Cauliflower has some Palestinian friends, they’ve been enlightening her on some of their customs. They ululate when they are really happy. I had no idea what that was, so Cauliflower demonstrated in the car while we were parked outside FoodBasics surrounded by other people sitting in their cars listening. Wild things can often be very embarrassing, but I like being where the wild things are.

Mother’s Day Weekend

On the first night of Mother’s day weekend my family gave to me,

The chance to go out and watch Iron Man three!

On the second morning of Mother’s day weekend my family gave to me,

Two twins fighting and the chance to go out and watch Iron Man 3.

On the second afternoon of Mother’s day weekend my family gave to me,

Three older children screaming, two twins fighting and the chance to go out and watch Iron Man 3.

On the second evening of Mother’s day weekend my family gave to me,

One gone out with friends husband, three older children screaming, two twins fighting and a chance to go out and watch Iron Man 3.

On the Sunday of Mother’s day weekend my family gave to me,

Pancakes doused in syrup, one gone out with friends husband, three older children screaming, two twins fighting and a chance to go out and watch Iron Man 3.

On the Sunday evening of Mother’s day weekend my family gave to me,

A fridge depleted of groceries, a poop filled litter box, fifty loads of laundry, innumerable dirty dishes, crayon decorated walls, Cheerios covered carpets, one seriously in trouble husband, five brawling children and I don’t even remember seeing the damned movie.

On the Monday after Mother’s day weekend my family gave to me,

An empty house full of serenity.

This is what I got Sunday morning.

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And two hand-made one of a kind bracelets made from fuzzy pipe cleaners and beads obtained from Dollarama.

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This is some of what I dealt with when everyone was finally out of the house.

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There were twice as many dishes in the sink and on the counter, and some were extracted from underneath beds and desks.

What were you treated to on Mother’s day?

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All pics courtesy of moi.

Spring Cleaning

I need to stay away from the internet if I want to finish writing my book. I’m on chapter 8, and I also wrote the last chapter and some stuff in the middle. That is also how I read novels. I often read the middle and end first just because.

So I am trying hard to resist the temptation of Facebook and reading blogs. It’s very difficult. I tried to  read some stuff on writing and I wanted to bang my head against the wall when I read this: Revision and self-editing.   I hope it helps any of you who are in editing stages. I clicked on the links which although maybe very useful I found to be well, very difficult to follow. Since I am not at the editing stage I hope to forget all about it for now.

Unfortunately I can’t sit and write all day because apparently family members need to be fed and the house can’t clean itself. There are lots of things for kids to throw garbage in when they are tidying up. Don’t forget to check all your vases when doing the spring cleaning.

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I like vases. All shapes. All sizes. All colors.

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I do not like what I find in them.

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The start of a Guinness record holding rubber band ball. I am not adding the picture of some ‘organic’ material I found. It was either a dead animal or the remains of a school lunch sandwich from before last year’s summer vacation.

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This is how I know one of my twins got hold of my camera.march 26 014

There are other things besides spring cleaning that keep me from writing that NYT best-seller.

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This is one of them.

What distracts you from doing that great thing you were born to do?

(All pics courtesy of my camera and my willing feline model)

Reading to Children

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I love reading to my children. Uhh..I loved it with kid 1 and 2. By kid 3 it was more the guilt and with 4 and 5 my life depends on it. They tie my hands and threaten to ingest large amounts of sugar and coffee if I don’t tell them a bedtime story.

We have a great collection of books and the kids love trips to the library for new ones. We got a new book in December. I sort of won a contest on a blog, not really won sort of won. So Mike Allegra, heylookawriterfellow, sent me  this beautiful book he wrote. Sarah Gives Thanks is a great book. The story is touching, informative and it teaches kids to never give up. It is inspiring and it is true. My kids loved it and I think every parent should add it to their kids’ collection.

Another tear jerker book I love is Love You Forever by Robert Munsch. If you don’t have it or haven’t read it, get it and read it to your kids immediately. Besides these I adore the wacky ones, anything by Roald Dahl and Dr. Seuss are must haves for your children’s book shelves. They are just so much fun to read.

Reading to young children helps turn them into readers for life and you can find many studies that link reading to success, so get bedtime stories into your schedule!

What do you enjoy reading to your kids? Which book do they love to hear over and over?

Lost in Translation: Part One

  Did you ever play that game Chinese whispers? I don’t ever remember playing it. To compensate this childhood deprivation God has blessed me with a husband and kids who live Chinese Whispers. You don’t get it? Let me demonstrate. Introducing the cast:

Slovenly Teen: 15

Only Son: 13

Middle Child: 8 (I also refer to her as ‘sweet child o mine’- she is the only one I want to admit is my actual offspring)

Twin 1: 5

Twin 2: coincidentally also 5

Husband: Peter Pan

Me: 18 till I Die (Bryan Adams rocks..eh)

Random Situation 1:

Slovenly Teen, the reigning champion of sleeping in, is still in bed on Saturday evening..no night..of course I am not exaggerating! Whatever gave you the idea I exaggerate?

Me: “Wake up goddammit! It’s almost Sunday, look at the filthy mess in this room, I am not cleaning up after you, you over grown gargantuan sloth. You get up right now and wash those dishes, I wash them all week. The least you can do is help out on the weekend, you good for nothing massive waste of carbohydrates. What kind of example are you setting for your younger sisters? All right that is it, I am throwing our all your junk….here it goes…did you hear me?”

What Slovenly Teen actually hears:

“My poor exhausted precious pearl! You have worked hard looking swag all week. Baby you need a rest! Now don’t you dare try to get up and put things away, no no no! Mama will do that for you, my darling angel! Just right after I get your good for nothing sisters to wash the dishes and clean up your room I am going to cook your favorite …now what do you feel like? Lasagna or chicken cacciatore? You are so beautiful it is unbelievable and just for being that good-looking I think I’m gonna bake my baby a cake! Here honey let me put your beats on your ears for you…you just relax and continue snoozing the day away sugar-plum.”

Random Situation 2:

Xbox addicted Only Son had been playing since 4 pm and it is now 7 pm  The twins are fainting from severe lack of Tree House. Yes I insist on keeping one and only one TV!

Me: “You need to turn that game off now! You have been playing for five hours now. Other people in this house need the TV you know! If you don’t turn that goddamn thing off right now, you won’t play for a week. I don’t care if you have ten friends online, if their mothers are ok with their sons turning into a bunch of zombie gamers, fine with me. Are you listening to me? ”

What Only Son hears: “Most precious only male child and carrier of the family name. Continue on your quest of becoming the greatest gamer in the history of mankind and bring me pride. You have only been playing for half an hour and I know it will take hours of hard work to perfect your great skill at killing underage players online violently and mercilessly. I take great delight in every kill you make. It makes my heart sing while you comment loudly, with strange verbal embellishments,  into that expensive mouth piece earphone thing set that I most happily agreed upon buying. Play on noble son, play on.”

Random Situation 3:

Twin 2 greatly frustrated while I am busy in the kitchen, comes to me with the complaint that her Xbox addicted brother has still not turned off the game.

Me: “Okay, just let me finish up what I am doing and I’ll come and have a talk with your brother.”

Twin 2 to Only Son: “Mom said you better get off that goddammit game right now or she is going to break it into gazillions of pieces and throw them off the roof. And then you are going to get a spanking. DO IT NOW!”

Random Situation 4:

Peter Pan  husband is on the internet. I have issues that I need to discuss.

Me: “The groceries are almost finished you need to go shopping, and I was wondering what to cook for dinner. Do you want to have traditional stuff tonight or something non-desi? Did you know Only Son’s dentist appointment is next week? There is a sale on at the mall, I think we should go. You have got to talk to that daughter of yours! Her room is a mess, you need to get more involved with the kids, I can’t do everything you know! There is something wrong with the vacuum cleaner and the cat, they are both throwing up hairballs. Do you think I have started looking..old? You need to get some exercise, you sit too long at that damn computer, the twins have vaccinations due.  Middle child brought home an open house circular from school and…”

What husband actually hears: “Blah blah blah blabbidy bloo blah blah blabber blabber blabber blah blah blabbidy bleep blah blah blah…”

Husband: “Okay”

So what does your family hear when you are trying to communicate?

(All pics from Google Images)

It’s Always a Good Time

I yelled at the kids to go to sleep early one Saturday night in the summer vacation so we could get up early and be out of the house by eleven at the most. I woke up at 11:21. Everyone was up before me. No one realized that they could not actually leave the house if I was still snoring away. So I had to start yelling again as soon as I woke up. They just wanted to let me sleep in, isn’t that sweet? The day I need to wake up early, they finally let me sleep in. My kids make sure my vocal cords get plenty of exercise every day. The thing is I don’t really dream of being an opera singer.
After ranting about the height of negligence that my kids and their father have been endowed with, I started making brunch and packing picnic food. I had marinated the chicken the night before. Good thing I have an obsessive compulsive disorder with organization. Unfortunately this does not go good with my absent-mindedness. But that is life. Isn’t it ironic, don’t ya think?
Picnics are loads of fun with five kids. I pack enough stuff to make you believe I was going away for a month. 5-year-old twins mean you need lots of extra clothes and towels. You never know who is going to decide to get carsick. They’ve been trained to give a 5 second warning so I can catch it in a plastic bag.
So I make an Olympic record for the best time in the ‘make breakfast, feed kids, pack picnic, yell at kids to get ready, close all lids on toilet seats, feed cat, and push everyone out the door’ event. We get in the car and as soon as we are in the kids start fighting over seats. No one wants to sit at the back with the twins. I can’t blame them. Who the hell enjoys catching vomit in a plastic bag?
We had to stop to buy buns and drinks. And coal. And lighter fluid. Because husband does not have any sort of obsessive compulsive disorder and efficiently tunes out when I start listing off ‘things to do’. So I sit in the car while he buys stuff, and try to ignore the kids who are arguing about who will sit where on the way back. I receive a phone call from husband, “I can’t find the buns”.
By 1:45 we were sitting outside the second grocery store because husband could not find coal at the first. After 25 minutes he comes out smiling. Success. It took two people 25 minutes to find lighter fluid. We finally move on. On the road husband realizes someone’s door is not closed right. At the first red light we all open and slam the doors really fast, green light we drive on but one door is still not closed right.  Change radio station because no one likes the song. Yell at kids to stop yelling at each other. Next stop light, door open, door slam, door still not closed thank you ma’am. Kids still yelling at each other about whose door is not shut properly. Teenage daughter only has enough strength to hit her brother in the back of the head and that is all. For anything else her hands seem to have no life. Have to change radio station every two minutes. Husband wants to know why all the songs sound exactly the same. We pull into someone’s driveway and husband gets out to close the door shut.
Teenagers are now commenting on all the ‘swoggy’ people they see on the way. As if they are full of swag themselves. Change radio station.
At the lake finally, more bickering among offspring. Who will pick up what and why they get to pick up that particular object. Deciding on the perfect spot takes about 20 minutes, but by now I have started to tune everyone out. It is such a beautiful day. Warm and sunny. We are finally settled, I just want to get in that water. I walk in and my longed for peace is replaced with horror. The water is freezing. God dammit!
“We don’t even have to try it’s always a good time..O o o ..”
(All images are from Google Images)

 

Juggling

Before I had kids I was able to do everything on time and life was pretty organized, goals were attainable. If only at that time I had known I should be writing. Now things don’t go quite so smoothly….

And this is often how I feel. I look even worse. But that is life. I have a habit of writing things down to the point of being slightly paranoid, so I don’t forget. Things like make breakfast, feed the kids, wake them up first, send them off to school, start breathing normally again. Eat breakfast, feed the cat, feed husband, wash dishes, go to the washroom and other stuff that I tend to forget. When I am not procrastinating I write things I have to do on the Google calendar and believe it or not it keeps me quite organized. I try to prioritize and then stick to it. A lot of things get done, of course somethings get neglected. Like wasting time on facebook, falling asleep on the sofa while watching Tree House and reading through weird news on Yahoo or irrelevant tweets on twitter that I never seem to get the hang of. I know it is a big sacrifice.

Deschanel (Canadian Press)

Zooey Deschanel’s dress flops on Emmy carpet

This was an important bit of news.

So this post was one of my planned things on today’s schedule according to my calendar. I also read some blogs and found this at Words From the Woods. Cat is really great and has good tips for writers. She is also on Agent Query Connect where she helps out writers in the dummy stage. I am one of those dummies.

This is an older post but it had a bit about balancing schedules and every one can use good tips. I find writing things down in order of importance is best for me. The Google calendar helps keep it organized and makes it look less confusing and overwhelming. I also try to keep it at an achievable level. I was reminded of this when I read “The End of Optimism” on heylookawriterfellow. He also has advice and interesting posts on burros. A ‘burro’ is what Latin Americans called small donkeys. Now I will be forever doubtful when I eat a burrito.

Anyways you shouldn’t get over-excited and plan on things you won’t be able to complete. You will just get depressed when you can’t manage to get them done. So plan things in a way that gives you enough time to actually get them done.

This is not what your writing schedule should look like or you will look like this:

So remember you are human and not the Flash. Set reasonable goals to accomplish, and have a stash of chocolate handy when you do or even don’t reach them.

What do you do to keep your self organized and make sure you get things done?

(All images form Google Images. Google I love you, truly I do)