Before you marry a person, you should first make them use a computer with slow Internet to see who they really are.
— Will Ferrell
Here is something that I watched (and thoroughly enjoyed) with Daddy-O today.
Let me know what you think!
Did you agree? Did you laugh? Please tell me you laughed!
Are you happy?
Are you married?
Are you happily married?
What do you think makes a marriage last?
Everything in moderation, including moderation. ~Oscar Wilde
Saturdays are pretty casual at Chez Peady, but we have a few things we tend to do on any given Saturday when we are in town.
I have a regular Saturday morning Zumba class, which I would never (ever, ever, EVAR) miss, unless I was physically not present. I missed last weekend because I was away celebrating a very important birthday and though I missed baltering with my bestie, I am so glad I was able to be present to present the presents.*
The Things are not currently enrolled in any extracurricular activities on Saturdays, so they tend to have a fairly relaxing morning. They might read or have a bit of TV or CPU time for a little while and, after a while, typically the topic of cleaning will be brought up by Daddy-O and they vanish like, well – like clean in a kids room!
There are a million great reasons to tidy a Thing room. In that there are a million things that need to be picked up off that darn floor and put away, donated or tossed.
And yet, today just didn’t seem like the right day to push it.
Thing 2, clearly got wind of a forthcoming fumigation because she decided to sleep in. It was an avoidance tactic, obviously, but I know my kiddos and it was also a clear sign that she was feeling stressed about stuff. It’s funny, you know, stuff can really bog a person down. Even a teeny Thing-like person.
They are always so relieved and relaxed once the annual pre-Christmas purge happens, but there’s no need in stressing them to the max in order to create calm. It sort of defeats the whole purpose of the exercise.
Thing 1, was happy to hang out with Daddy-O and play some computer games while I went off to Zumba (which was awesome, by the way) to dance away my stresses. He has an interesting set of avoidance skills, himself, mind you. He can organize his books for hours, but the closet floor will remain carpeted with a week’s worth of clothes. It’s enough to make a mother consider a rather pricey investment in that caution tape the police use to keep people away from crime scenes.
No. Today was a day of doing as little as possible and doing it with enthusiasm.
Usually, Saturday’s lunch is left over pizza from Friday Family Fun Night, but last night’s was so yummy the Things ate the whole pie! It was a simple Pepperoni & Cheese pizza and they were hungry Things! So, leftover pizza was out.
It seemed the kind of day that a fun lunch was in order, so we came up with the following meal. Brace yourself. No really. I mean it. Go eat some kale and have some cucumber water to prepare yourself for the forthcoming information.
This is a Peanut Butter, Banana, and Nutella sandwich – on WHITE bread!
With BBQ chiptonite on the side.
The Things were thrilled.
I didn’t even know there was white bread in the kitchen. I never buy it. I suspect it was purchased by mistake. But seriously, if you were a kid who typically eats lots and lots of healthy meals (especially on school days, by the way, because it really is important) wouldn’t this make you happy?
BB looks like she might be saying, “Awe you sewious, wady?!”* (BB photobombs are the bomb, no?)
So, I guess what I am saying is …
*Is it any wonder ESL students get confused?
**This is the way BB has started speaking. We have no idea why she started speaking, at all, actually, but the voice – hoo boy. The Things do a voice and well, this is what she sounds like. It’s “adowabow” and extremely irritating at once. BB often gets up to shenanigans at Chez Peady, but her breakfast capers are what drive the parents the absolute most bananas on any given day. Especially if BB speaks prior to the coffee pot *beep*.
We have had a lot of event filled weekends this Fall and, as a result, have fallen out of our Friday Family Fun Night rituals.
Last weekend we were away from home (again!) and when we arrived home on Monday after an exhausting drive on a very foggy, driving snowy, blowing snowy, swirling snowy, rainy snowy, SNOWY snowy, Cobequid Pass, we decided that we would reinstate the Friday Family Fun Night tradition and have a weekend of very nearly zero obligations.
We are trying to keep it simple, remember?
In keeping with the manifesto, I made a very simple plan.
MYO Pizza – which everyone loves!
To make it even simpler, I made all the pizzas using ready made pizza crusts.
The Things shared this happy-making Pepperoni & Cheese pizza.
Daddy-O chose a more classic Pepperoni & Cheese with veggies (red pepper, red onion, mushroom).
I was very excited to try the Kinnikinnick ready made gluten free crusts that friends in the know suggested.
I am thrilled to report that the pizzas turned out great and that the crusts themselves are quite delicious.
It’s really nice to know that I have a viable option for those nights when I just need to keep it simple.
Doesn’t that look delightful?
Mine had the Kinnikinnick crust, pepperoni, mozzarella cheese, red pepper, red onion, mushroom, pickled jalapeño slices, and gluten free turkey sausage.
It was glorious!
After everyone had full tummies it was time for us to settle in with the evening’s planned entertainment. We opted to skip a movie in lieu of the excellent Bullying Awareness schedule on the Family Channel.
The cast of “The Next Step” hosted the evening and introduced some of our favourite shows – “Austin & Ally”, “Girl Meets World”, and “The Next Step” – all of which were featuring bullying storylines tonight as a part of their Stand UP to Bullying campaign. All three shows led to much discussion about friendship and bullying and how important it is to stand up and speak up and to never, ever be a bystander.
We especially loved “Girl Meets World“. It is so well written and I love how they keep managing to tie “Boy Meets World” storylines and characters into the show. It’s just so well done!
The Popcorn Pix feature presentation was another trip into bullying territory, with “Contest”. It was very good, but pretty harsh in many ways, as well. Very serious subject matter, obviously, and they hinted at some very heavy elements of being the bullied one. Overall it was very good. Definitely not for the younger ones. Thing 2 is 8 and she was snuggled up pretty close the whole time. Still though it’s such an important topic and we really cannot talk about it enough. No one can. Keep talking!
So, how was your week?
Did you have a good one?
What will be on your agenda this weekend?
What about your plate?
Did you take in any Bullying Awareness Week programs or events?
Do you have an open dialogue with your kiddos and the young people in your life about bullying and mental health and how to get help if the need arises?
I am exhausted.
I need sleep.
I must sleep.
I am sure I’ll have lots of words another night, but right now I’ll just leave you with this.
Are you NaBloPoMo-ing?
Is it totally kicking your butt?
How do you prioritize your day so that you have time for your life, your kids, your volunteering, your Parent-Teacher interviews, your meal preparation, your healthy eating, your fitness, your cake, your job(s), your family?
Help a mother out.
Leave me your best tips for surviving the time crunch of everyday life in the comments!
If you leave a great one, I might even invite you for a Friend Nap.
For as long as I have been making school lunches, I have been leaving little notes in the Things’ lunch boxes.
Long before they were the avid readers they are now, I would print simple messages of love and encouragement on sticky notes. I am a believer in environmental print*. Kids are smart. They don’t need all the rules memorized before they put theory into practice. A little heart shaped slip of paper speaks volumes. A speedily scrawled smiley face on a paper napkin can make a kid’s day – especially a day that is in dire need of levity. You remember those days, right? We all have them.
Sometimes it’s a silly doodle. Sometimes it’s a riddle. Sometimes it’s a hint about a special after school activity.
Other times it’s a reminder, cleverly disguised in witty prose.
Here are today’s notes.
And they love me anyway.
Do you write notes?
Do you leave notes in your children’s (or partner’s) lunch boxes?
Are you a poet (and totally know it!)?
Are you a writer or a printer?
When is the last time you wrote a letter or a note on actual paper for someone else to read?
Do you value the skill of cursive writing?
Or are you all g2g lol and ttyl 24/7?
Why not leave me a note in the comments! *wink*
*Don’t believe me about the environmental print? Try this experiment with a teeny kiddo** who is not yet reading in the traditional sense: Show them a favourite item (National Brand cookies or the cover of a familiar book, for example.) with writing or a logo on it and see if they recognize it. They will. That’s *reading* when you are not yet a reader in the traditional sense. Kids are awesome!
**Umm… not just any kiddo, to be clear. Make sure the kiddo is yours or you might totally freak the kid and his/her parent/guardian out!
***The Things don’t call me “Ma”, but I called my Ma, “Ma”, when I was little. Also, we are still working our way through the entire “Little House on the Prairie” series and well, it’s just fun to sign some notes that way!
Were there tacos?
Was it Tuesday?
Of course there were tacos!
We really do have tacos a lot at Chez Peady. It’s okay though because everyone loves them.
We have tacos every week. Typically on Taco Tuesday, but if we miss a Tuesday we have been known to have a Taco Wednesday or Friday. See also, Sunday through Saturday. I mean really, is there a day when tacos are not a good idea? No. I don’t think so.
I have pretty patient people in my family, especially when it comes to food, so they are on board with my plan to never grow bored with Taco Tuesdays!
That’s why I often change up the topping ingredients and even the kind of tacos we have.
We’ve had fish tacos, beef tacos, turkey tacos, chicken tacos and vegetarian tacos and each of those can have a variety of toppings and healthy additions, such as chickpeas or black beans. Every time I change something up they eat it up. No complaints. I love these people. Seriously.
Today, I was very busy* trying to play catch up with life (and Twitter, foolishly!) after a weekend away, the added stress of Parent-Teacher interviews last night, grocery shopping had to get done, and I also knew I would have an extra Thing after school today, which was great, but I had to get stuff done, you know? So I was not feeling fancy. Not at all.
I was feeling all apologetic as supper was being prepared because it was going to be a pretty plain Taco Tuesday. (I mean, sometimes Taco Tuesday gets pretty awesome, ’round here!)
Thing 2 was sitting at the table (Doing a science experiment. As one does.) and I mentioned that it wasn’t going to be a very fancy meal.
She said, “You mean we are just having plain tacos?”
“Yes.” I replied as I popped the taco shells into the oven.
“Like, just beef and nothing else?”
She sounded more than okay with that, so I turned to confirm and she had the biggest, happiest, smile on her face.
She was positively giddy at the idea of simple tacos.
Then Thing 1 joined in with, “I love plain tacos! You mean there’s no beans in there?”
Nope. No beans.
They were so happy to have plain tacos.
Kids really get it.
I hope someday I will be as wise as they are.
I try so hard to keep things simple, I really do, but every now and then I am so thankful to be reminded why.
Why do adults complicate things?
Do you ever find yourself in a situation – that by it’s very nature is simple – and you somehow have to make it more complex?
Do grown ups all have some odd Rube Goldberg syndrome?
*Uh oh! The B word!
**Yeppers, I actually say that word.
Oh, you knew it was bound to happen.
Here is my go-to recipe for fudge.
2 cups Brown Sugar
1 cup Margarine (or real butter!)
6 ozs. Carnation (canned) Milk (Yes. Really. I know. I know. Just trust me.)
Boil for 10 minutes at Med. High Heat
Remove from heat and add:
2 Cups Icing Sugar
Vanilla (about a teaspoon – or to taste)
Beat for 2 minutes with elecric mixer.
For Chocolate* Fudge add 1/3 Cups of Cocoa
9″ x 13″ pan
All the usual rules apply. Score the fudge before it cools completely to make cutting the little squares easier.
Now go forth and fudge-ify!
Let me know how it turns out!
*We have made this into a Mint Chocolate as well, by swapping mint extract for the vanilla.
I am away from home and posting from my phone. This is a first!
This might also be a big fat failure, but I am working with what I have.
On the one hand, I really wish I was at home typing on my Mac Mini with all my creature comforts. On the other hand, I’m lying in bed in a cozy guest room, jammified, with TV on, typing on my iThing, after tucking the Things into their cozy guest room. It’s hard to complain.
It’s been a nice weekend. We came to celebrate a birthday and we did.
Family, whether it’s “yours” or “theirs”, is important and should be honoured. It’s in the manifesto!
The Things love birthdays and very sweetly contribute handmade cards or pictures and like to have a say in what the present might be. We all agree that this year’s was just right.
Tomorrow we will be on our way back home to work and school, but for tonight we’ll just be here now.
Flip through channels.
Who buys watches from TV, anyway?
I am a fan of fundraising.
I have this cockamamie dream that one day I’ll reach the pinnacle of my career as a volunteer and become a philanthropist extraordinaire and spend the remainder of my days making people’s lives better.
It’s a lofty goal. I admit it.
Oh, but what a great story that would be.
I’ll keep dreaming and doing my part to make the world a better place one little act of kindness at a time.
In the meantime I am so glad there are organizations like WWF Canada making steps towards reversing climate change and keeping our planet, our one true home, safe, so that my children (and yours!) will have a home for a very, very, very long time.
On Monday, I received the latest “Panda Mail” from WWF Canada and one of the featured pieces was called “First Dates with David Miller”. This is a three part video series wherein Canadian celebrities go on a first date with former Mayor of Toronto and current WWF Canada President & CEO David Miller and chat while riding around Toronto in an EV (Electric Vehicle).
You could go ahead and let your imaginations run wild, but I think it would be best if you checked out the silliness for yourself.
But I will share one.
Yes, that is Kid In The Hall, Mark McKinney.
I wonder if he tried to crush David Miller’s head.
So that was fun, wasn’t it?
I thought so.
Now I can’t get this out of my head!
How *can* you deny an electric car?