Tag Archives: kids

Slaying ennui with Graham Greene and bored games

“I’m bored.” Those were the first words out of my daughter’s mouth after I picked her up from the babysitter. I can understand the feeling. It’s -25C outside with the wind chill factor. “Everyone else at school was hyper – I was grumpy,” she started off with a grouch. She was on the edge of […]

Marrying toothbrushes provokes the morning yell

The morning yell is inevitable. It happens for different reasons every day – dawdling, sleeping in, being distracted – but it is inevitable. My daughter is physically incapable of getting ready on time without the morning routine escalating crazily into the morning yell. To wit: I walk into the bathroom – she’s standing in front […]

When a wooden spoon is a threat

When I was a kid I would sometimes wonder, in certain situations, why grown-ups didn’t do something. Now I’m asking myself, should I do something. My daughter’s friend, S., had a sleepover with us last night. We went to a movie, did a little bit of shopping, made breakfast together this morning – simply had […]

Joy found – and lost – on a winter’s walk

My daughter keeps asking me to go on “our winter walk.” What she really wants to do is recapture a moment we experienced last year. It’s now etched in her memory. And she wants to replicate it. It was like this: the snow had fallen gently all day, covering the trees, the houses, the sidewalks. […]

My daughter needs a role model. I’m going to take a bath

It’s one of those in-between days. Midway between Christmas and New Year. One celebration ended, another yet to begin. So let’s take a break, take a breath. Or take a bath. Which is what, for the first time in months, I was able to do the other day. No, no, not the kind that my […]

Protecting my kid from a madman

What happened in Newtown, Connecticut is horrible. But it’s not something my 8-year-old daughter needed to know about. We’re a newsy family. The TV is usually on with a 24-hour news station running in the background. And my daughter is a fairly aware and mature kid. She looks forward to Tuesday nights because her favourite […]

Getting excited about the first snowfall

The snow hasn’t landed yet so it’s easy to wax poetic. About how it blankets everything in the city in a cleansing shroud of white, muffling the sounds of sirens and streetcars and vans and trucks and cars. How the footprints of hundreds are erased for a few minutes and you’re the first to mark […]

In anger, all we want is to be heard

I like cleaning – sometimes. My kid doesn’t – ever. Right now, she is up in her bedroom crying loudly and alternately grumbling under her breath. “I hate doing this. I hate doing this.” (At least she’s not saying, “I hate my mommy, I hate my mommy.”) Then I hear the occasional bang. The lead-up […]

Pen or PC? It’s in the writing

I have to admit I’m writing this blog at my computer. Using my keyboard. Perched on my lap. This does not make me feel any less like I’m writing. Composing. But it would give Julius, the kid at my daughter’s school who quit the newspaper because he couldn’t write by hand, great cause for glee. […]

The making of a political junkie

The party room was buzzing. It must have been 1972. Election year. Alastair Gillespie was campaigning to win the riding of Etobicoke in Toronto for the second time – he’d gained it first in 1968 and again in 1974. This is the first memory that I can pinpoint in time by counting out election years: […]

Why we confuse our kids on Halloween

There was a Canadian woman in Northern Ireland who was well-known in the neighbourhood for taking her kids out trick-or-treating on Halloween night. It’s not a tradition in that country the way it is in Canada, so this was thought a bit odd. Her trick-or-treating sparked conversations – about how different she was. About how […]

I’ll always have Paris

Disneyland beckons. If my daughter has her way, that’s where I’m going for our next holiday. Personally, I’d prefer Paris. Dingle, Ireland would do nicely. Heck, I’d be happy with a week at the cottage. There are stranger reasons to go to a place. One of the funniest I’ve ever heard came from an older […]

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