June 18, 2008

Wordless Wednesday - Brothers

For more wordless wednesday, visit 5 minutes for mom.

Those of you who linked here from 5 minutes for mom & are looking for a toy giveaway - Sorry! I don't know why it says that, it was there when I hit "enter" on Mr. Linky. I can't find a way to edit it... No toy giveaway today. I'll probably have one soon, though.


June 17, 2008

Pot Suckers and Candy Cigarettes

Have you heard of these?

From Maclean's Magazine: "'Pot Suckers' and 'Kronic Candy' are marijuana-flavoured lollipops... The hemp-flavoured suckers contain no THC, the key ingredient in marijuana, but legislators in other states may be following Georgia's ban, branding the sweet as a precursor to using harder drugs."

What the hell? Why?

Does pot even taste good? Please tell me because I, being a wide-eyed innocent, have never tried it.

And what do you think? Are these likely to lead kids to hard drugs?

Or are they more like these?

I loved Popeye cigarettes as a child, but they had so little influence on my desire to actually smoke that I have never even clutched a real cigarette between my virgin fingers, much less between my virgin lips. (That's cigarette virgin, people... I do have two kids, you know. Not that fingers or lips HAVE to be involved in the making of kids... But, I digress)

And, on a side note, Popeye cigarettes are now called:

So I guess someone must have complained.


You Know?

If I'd seen all the stuff Shaggy and Scooby have seen, I'd be scared all the time, too.

Just sayin'


June 13, 2008

In Which I Disagree, but I Hesitate to Say So

I'm torn.

This morning I read a blog post that really bothered me. To paraphrase (in the most kickin' run-on sentence evah), the blog post asked whether and how you should intervene when you (in your obviously superior wisdom and intellect) see other parents, who love their kids more than anything and who are doing their best, make mistakes (which, in your obviously superior wisdom and intellect, are painfully obvious to you) with their kids; mistakes that, according to this blog post, are not illegal but are screwing up these (otherwise loving) parents' kids for EVER.

Here's what I think about it: Not everybody is going to agree with how everyone else is raising their kids. I'm sure that there are people out there who are ready to point fingers and scream "foul!" at even the most perfect of parents. My point is that maybe what looks like bad parenting to you works for them in their unique situation. I don't think, as long as these are loving parents who are not abusing their children, any of us (because nobody's perfect, after all) are in any position to judge. So I guess my answer to her question is that I don't think we should intervene. I think we should mind our own business and continue to do the best we can, within our own unique, imperfect parenting situations.

So why am I torn?

I'm torn because I can't decide whether or not I should voice my opinion. I hesitate to comment when I disagree with someone. This is weird because, in real life, I rarely hesitate to voice my opinion, especially if it's different. I'm not trying to be oppositional, I just think a variety of views keeps things interesting. So why hesitate online? I guess I'm worried about opening the proverbial can of worms. I don't want to be that mean commenter that nobody likes. I also don't want to make anyone angry. So I read the post this morning, hesitated about commenting, came here and wrote out the issue, decided to share it with you... Then I decided that if I was writing about someone else's blog post I'd better comment on it at their blog as well. So I commented. (Okay, I have my can of worms right here, just hand me the can opener.) When I read the other comments at the blog I felt better about the whole issue. People are commenting in an insightful way, open discussion is going down. And it's good. So yeah. I guess it's okay to comment when I disagree.

So, what do you think...
About whether or not we should intervene when we notice other parents struggling?
And about commenting on blog posts that you disagree with? Yes, or no?


June 12, 2008

What are Your Strengths?

One of the new blogs I've been reading, a garden of nna mmoy, linked to a "positive psychology" website, called Authentic Happiness where you can take some personality tests to find out various facts about yourself, such as how happy you are, or how close your relationships are... Frances (of a garden of nna mmoy) suggested taking the signature strengths test, which will provide you with your top five strengths.

Anyway, I did the test and this is what it told me my "signature strengths" are:

1. Humour and Playfulness
2. Curiosity and Interest in the World
3. Love of Learning
4. Creativity, Ingenuity, and originality
5. Kindness and Generosity.

Yup. So, what do you think... Sound like me? Or the me you know via the interwebs, anyway?

Your turn... What are your top five strengths?


June 11, 2008

Google Me Fun

Here are the top 10 Google Searches which have directed people to my blog, according to my google stats:

1. Homemade by Jill. Ever since I mentioned Homemade by Jill in a post, she's been the numero uno google search that brings people to my site. Thanks Jill! Incidentally, have you read Jill's other blog which she writes with her best friend, Megan: Bee-Boppin' the Boroughs? You should, it's so much fun.

2. Housewife adventures. Yes. That what we do here at Adventures of the Reluctant Housewife, Inc. Although, I think I should point out, we do it somewhat reluctantly.

3. Giveaways. Unhun. We've had a few.

4. Housewife. Why are people looking for a housewife on the internet?

5. Housewife Blog. Score!

6. Housewife Bra. They have special bras for housewives now? Do they do dishes?

7. Housewife in Bra. This one makes more sense to me. I'm wearing one right now, in fact.

8. Amature Housewife. AMATURE? snicker.

9. Chubby Urban Dictionary. My favourite. I think people who have to look up the meaning of the word "Chubby" in the urban dictionary are lame. And, people, just for your information: I am not that kind of chubby.

10. Housewife Booty. You know you want it. And because I'm the right kind of chubby... I've got more of it to give. But this housewife booty is taken. Sorry to disappoint!

And the last 5 google searches that brought people to my site, according to sitemeter and statcounter, were:

"Homemade by Jill" (my numero uno)
"Outdoor Nature Hunt" (We did one once with the kids)
"Midlifemamma" (Excuse me?! Who you callin' "midlife"?)
"Sanitizing" (What? How? Why?)
and "Housewife Bra" (unhun)

Okay, then.

What was the weirdest google search that brought someone to your blog?


Blog Question

For blog writers and blog readers.

How do you use your comments? Do you reply to questions people ask in your comments? Do you use them as a conversation spot? Do you go back and recheck comments on other people's blogs to see if they've replied to any comments you left?

I'm going to be interacting more with people in my comments... So I'm curious if you follow comments on the blogs you read.



June 9, 2008

Spider Update

You'll be happy to hear that the spider situation is more or less under control. They're not traveling in hordes anymore. We find one every once in a while but, for the most part, they're gone.


Thank you all for your excellent suggestions. They were hilarious. My favourites were:
"I would have run screaming with my kid under one arm, and never returned",
" I have no advice besides maybe moving?", and
"NUKE EM!" or "I say go chemical warfare on their hairy spider butts."

Seriously. Great stuff. Thanks for making me smile, despite the spiders and the heat.

Kisses and love n' stuff like that.


June 8, 2008

Too Hot to Move

Today it is hot. It's too hot.

I don't do the whole sweltering thing well. I hate the heat. Plus I have killer hay fever. Plus I hate bugs. Especially when they're INSIDE MY HOUSE.

I like winter. I love autumn. I'm okay with Spring.

But summer and me? We are not friends.


June 6, 2008

Oh Help!

Ew! Ew! Ew!

We have baby spiders in our downstairs bathroom. They're everywhere. We first noticed them yesterday and we've been squishing them ever since. Have you ever heard that if you kill a spider it's going to rain? Well, people, prepare yourselves for a very rainy season. The spiders and I have a deal, you see: As long as they stay out of my house... they get to live.

Just now, I opened the door to the bathroom, stuck my head in and peered around to see if I could see any new spiders. So far they've mostly been on the floor or climbing up the side of the vanity. I didn't see any on the floor, but I did notice one on the doorframe. I looked up and OH MY GOD! THE ENTIRE CEILING WAS COVERED IN CREEPY CRAWLY SPIDERS. Ah! Ah! Ah!

I might never be the same again. I need to go take a shower now. I feel like I must have spiders in my hair. I'm freaking out.

I hate bugs.

How long till they're gone?
How can I get rid of them?



The Day of the Bus

Last Wednesday, Hubby was off completing some very important Hubby business. He needed the car and no car for me meant that I had to get Buddy to school on the bus. Hubby and I went online and figured out which bus the kids and I needed to take. The route left from a bus stop near our house, switched buses once and dropped us off near Buddy's school. The trip, which takes us five to ten minutes by car (depending on traffic), was going to take 35 minutes to complete by bus.

Wednesday morning, I rushed the kids through their breakfast because we had to walk over to a nearby convenience store to pick up some bus tickets. Getting the tickets was a must because they're $1.10 cheaper per trip than paying in cash and, more importantly, because I live mostly cash-free, I didn't have any change for the bus.

We left the house at 9:15am and trudged towards the store, while Monkey wailed, "I want DRIVE, Mommy! Drive! Whaaaaannnnn! Drive!"

I explained (very patiently, I think), "We don't have a car today. That's why we have to take the bus."

Half way to the store, Monkey said, "Mommy, I need pee!"

I told him we were almost there and picked up the pace while Monkey started to do the pee-pee dance. We arrived at the store and I asked the man behind the counter if they have a public washroom. He took one look at Monkey, who was by now doing the pee-pee tango, and he reached under the counter and pulled out a key. He started towards the back of the store and indicated that we should follow. We followed him to the back, past some drinks coolers, around a corner, and down a hallway. He unlocked a door and showed us into the nastiest little bathroom I've ever seen. It was FILTHY. I closed and locked the door and hissed to Buddy, "Don't touch ANYTHING."

I tried to hold Monkey over the toilet, but he wasn't having that: "No Mommy! No do that!" So I sat him on the seat and he peed for, like, 100 years, or so. At one point, he grabbed the toilet seat to steady himself before I could stop him. Ew!

I shushed Buddy (who was asking in his loud, loud voice, "don't they ever clean in here, Mommy?") while I debated whether it was better to risk using the sink, or if it was better to wait until we got home to wash Monkey's hands. Because Monkey touched the toilet seat (argh! argh!), I decided to err on the side of washing. We vacated the bathroom, bought our tickets and left the scene.

We arrived home at about 10:30am. We needed to leave to catch the bus at 11:20am (must hurry! Fast! Fast!). So, I got Buddy's snack ready, sanitized the boys (yucky toilet germs! Argh!) and fed them lunch. We were out the door on time but, as we were walking towards the bus stop we saw a bus go by. I said, "Shit! I hope that wasn't our bus!" (Confession time: I said "Shit!" a lot this day... Mommy gold star for me!).

At the bus stop, I checked the schedules and decided that it must have been the other bus that stops there. So, we waited... And waited... And waited... And waited. The bus didn't come for 20 minutes, which meant that we definitely missed the one we were supposed to be on; it must have been early. We rode the bus to the stop where we were supposed to switch buses. I sat the kids down on the bench and checked the schedule. I was dismayed (yes I was) to find out that this bus only comes every 30 minutes and that we'd missed it. The next one was scheduled for 12:41 - 11 minutes after Buddy's school starts for the day... "Shit!" I said, "Shit! Shit! Shit! We'll have to walk."

So, I grabbed the kids by the hands and headed off at a lively trot towards the school. The walk took 15 minutes, with Monkey and Buddy almost running to keep up with me. But we made it on time - only just on time. The kids were already lined up to go into their classroom, which meant Buddy was too late for outdoor playtime (poor Buddy!).

I gave Buddy a kiss goodbye and Monkey and I rushed toward the bus stop to catch the bus back home. As we were walking, we saw a bus go by. "Shit!" I said. "We just missed the bus... Again!"

"Again!" Monkey echoed.

At the bus stop I noticed that there was a number you can call to check the bus schedules and to find out when the next bus is due. I called the number and an automated voice informed me, "The next bus is scheduled in 25 minutes." Then, I noticed a bus go by in the other direction. I watched it longingly as it disappeared in the distance. I considered walking and I considered waiting and, looking at Monkey, who was chillaxin' gratefully on the bench, I decided to wait. Monkey wandered around the bus stop, looking at flowers and peering into the small group of trees next to the stop. He declared the trees were a "scary, scary woods!" and the flowers were a "princess garden!". Someone had written the word "Monster" on the bench. I, recognizing a photo-op, had Monkey sit next to it.

Monkey, checking out the letters...

And hammin' it up for the camera.

Finally, the bus arrived. It was exactly the same bus I'd seen go by in the other direction. We rode it to our first stop, switched buses (after a 7 minute wait) and arrived home at 1:47pm. We needed to leave at 2:20pm to catch the bus back to Buddy's school to pick him up. I hurriedly ate some lunch and gave Monkey a snack. We left home and, this time, we actually caught the bus. We arrived at Buddy's school 15 minutes early and hung out, watching the ants on the walkway, until Buddy's class came out. As soon as Buddy came out, I grabbed the kids and hurried towards the bus stop. As we were walking, we saw a bus go by. "Shit!" I said, "We just missed the bus again!"

"Again!" Money echoed.

We got to the stop and I called the number, only to be told "the next bus is scheduled in 30 minutes." I decided, since it would be the same bus anyway, that we would take the bus in the other direction, rather than wait or make the kids (who were both tired and cranky) walk. We crossed the street, and I called the number to check when the next bus was scheduled. The automated voice told me, "the next bus is scheduled in one minute." "Great!" I said. "The bus will be here in a minute."

"Great!" Monkey echoed.

We boarded the bus and rode it to the end of the line. The bus driver watched us for a few minutes then told me, "M'am, we're here." I told her that we wanted to go back the other way. "Well, okay," she answered, with a slight roll of her eyes. And we headed off (vroom! vroom!). A few stops later, the bus driver looked back at us and said, "Just a warning: A million high school students are going to get on at Centennial High School." Sure enough, at the high school the bus filled with students. It was like the bus on Ferris Bueller's Day Off. I kept expecting someone to offer me some gummy bears that were "nice and warm and squishy" because they'd been in her pocket.

Only, it was more crowded than the Ferris bus because people were also standing up in every available space. We were the only non-high school students on the bus. Finally, we squeezed and pushed (kids EVERYWHERE) our way out at our stop and waited for our second bus. The kids picked clover while I threw a conniption fit every time they went too close to the road ("Stay on this side of the tree! On THIS side of the tree!"). We arrived home at 4:15pm. I made the kids another snack and we curled up on the futon upstairs to wait for Daddy to come home. We were completely exhausted.

Number of dollars spent getting Buddy to school on the bus: A full page of bus tickets - $9.00, plus tax.

Number of hours spent getting Buddy to school on the bus: 9:15am to 4:15pm - 7 hours.

Not having to take Buddy to school on the bus everyday: Priceless.


June 4, 2008


Okay then... Nobody knows what I was talking about when I put "Hello Polly!" into my yearbook write up back in 1993...

Except possibly for Gerbil, who correctly guessed that Polly was pining for the fjords.

"Hello Polly!" refers to a Monty Python sketch about a man who is trying to return a parrot to a pet shop. The parrot is dead but the pet shop owner insists it's not, it's simply pining for the fjords.

No parrots were harmed in the filming of this skit.
At least I hope not... I mean, I wasn't actually there, you know.

My best friend and I had a tape (this was before CDs) of the best of Monty Python that we used to listen to while driving around in the car... We were very cool. I was even more cool because I referred to it in my grad write-up... It's right there for prosperity.

Gerbil, for correctly guessing where "Hello Polly!" came from (although you didn't offer up your favourite Monty Python quote), if you'd like an eye-ball alien I'll be happy make one for you. I just need to know your colour preference & mailing address.

The rest of you, I really enjoyed your guesses. Thanks for playing along! And thanks for all of your birthday wishes!

And sorry for being so confusing with my "cryptic comments which no will ever understand..."