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The Writing Mother

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Red Writing Hood...
The Suicide of Reason in Canada
Pajamas Media
Call me crazy ...
30 Hours in 30 Days
Third Wave Feminism
Grrr.
I'm angry.
Personal DNA
New way to Google yourself

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Monday, May 29, 2006
Kindergarten approacheth...
Tonight we had the first parents meeting for kindergarten. Of course I was not going to cry, my son has been in day care for two and a half years. Of course I wasn't going to get emotional. Of course I was strong.

Of course I started to get totally teary eyed the moment I ment the teacher. She's just everything you want a kindergarten teacher to be, she's friendly, outgoing, warm, obviously patient, caring.

And she likes structure. My son is a structure child. He thrives when structured. His favorite question is "and then what is going to happen?" My little planner.

Kindergarten is monday to friday from 8:30 - 11:50... that's not even three hours! But it seems that there is so much packed into each morning. I have to get a snack together every. single. day. for M.

I may have gotten myself roped into heading up the fundraising committee of the Parent Advisory Council.
  The Writing Mother
  posted at 10:40 PM
  0 comments



Sunday, May 28, 2006
What I'm reading...
You may or may not know that I'm a total book junkie. I have had to implement a book limit on myself for fear of divorce. The book count in this house is nearing 800. I kid you not.

One book I started and could not bear to finish recently was The Mommy Wars. You can read my review here. In a nutshell, it was a book for rich, liberal and highly educated moms. I'm not rich, I'm not a liberal and while I may fancy myself to be smart, I am not 'highly educated'. I couldn't take another page... off to the second hand store with that one.

I've picked up a couple of books that I'm in the midst of:

The Martha Rules by Martha Stewart
I am actually quite enjoying it. I'm just not a big fan of hearing Martha's voice in my head. But I'll keep reading.

The Cure for Death by Lightning by Gail Anderson-Dargatz
This is my bath and bed book right now... I am half way through and I am really enjoying it. At first I didn't realize that it was written by and took place in Canada... I'm not a fan of Canadian authors. I find them ... too Canadian... I just can't explain it. But this one is a nice surprise. Good, round characters with depth.
  The Writing Mother
  posted at 8:21 PM
  1 comments



Friday, May 26, 2006
15 DAYS!
Fifteen working days left...

THREE WEEKS....

I almost can't contain myself!
  The Writing Mother
  posted at 2:16 PM
  0 comments



Thursday, May 25, 2006
Writer Beware!
If you are a writer, check out my post at The Writing Mother.
  The Writing Mother
  posted at 3:49 PM
  0 comments



Monday, May 22, 2006
What to do when...
... an Agent requests your non-fiction book proposal.

  1. Thank God that it's on holiday Monday so you have all day to contemplate this.
  2. Realize that your kitchen and dining room... not to mention your living room need to be cleaned.
  3. Immediately turn on the TV and vow to watch Regis and Kelly every single day of your upcoming Maternity Leave
  4. Refuse to open the Word doc containing the proposal until your office is clean.
  5. Freak out *just a little*.
  6. Blog.
  7. Read all your favourite bloggers.
  8. Look at the agent's web site 30 or 40 times.
  9. Make more coffee.
  10. Look out into the backyard and wonder if this might be the perfect time to go weed and put some more soil down.
  The Writing Mother
  posted at 10:25 AM
  1 comments



Thursday, May 18, 2006
So. Very. Tired.
I am not sure what is wrong, but I'm so tired that my eyes are almost crossing. It is laborious just to breathe at the moment. This whole 'work thing' is really getting in the way of my sleeping.

Something tells me the soccer, swimming, working, writing, studying, course-taking and pregnancy are all catching up on me. I just crave sweet, undisturbed sleep....
  The Writing Mother
  posted at 2:04 PM
  1 comments



Tuesday, May 16, 2006
Dear Sideline Soccer Coaches...
To the Grampa of the Tall Girl:

Your grand-daughter does not want to play soccer. I feel like a big Nazi making her learn to kick the ball properly. I've tried to make it fun, I've tried encouraging her, I've tried every thing I can think of... she begs to come off the field so she can play 'faeries' or 'let's be birds' on the sidelines. I will continue to try and encourage her because that's why I'm here. You are not helping by barking at her from the bench and telling her to stop goofing around. This is U6, goofing around is fun.

To the Grandma of the Short Girl:

It was 30 degrees celsius out last night at 7 pm. That's very warm, especially for little kids running around and playing soccer. Your grand-daughter is a doll and very energetic. When I tell her to drink water, it is so she doesn't get dehydrated and pass out. I have no evil plot to make her have to pee so that you have to walk the 100 yards to the bathroom. You are not helping when you come over and tell her to stop drinking water. You're also not helping when you completely ignore me while I try to explain the precious fluid balance in the human body. Go back and sit on the bench. And yes... as soon as you got 20 feet away I told both the kids on the sidelines that they should drink some more water.

I love the soccer.
  The Writing Mother
  posted at 8:40 AM
  1 comments



Monday, May 15, 2006
Posting on my OTHER blog...
I started a blog about Writing and Mothering some time ago, and have been very lax about posting. But I have a post up there now.... just incase that sort of thing floats your boat.

Sparks your Doobie.
Rings your Bell.
Honks your Horn.
Rattles your Cage.
Yanks your Chain.
  The Writing Mother
  posted at 10:11 AM
  0 comments



Sunday, May 14, 2006
Remember...
... when I said I hated her? I have totally changed my mind. I love her. I think she rocks. She is my new favourite character.

(It's Grey's Anatomy... keep up.)
  The Writing Mother
  posted at 9:06 PM
  3 comments



Happy Mother's Day!
For Mother's Day, I decided to take my almost-five-year-old to a horse show. I am not really one who necessarily needs to be 'pampered' on Mother's Day... I'd just like to do something that makes me happy, and going to a horse show makes me happy. So I drove us an hour south to the show (perfect timing, my son had a nap for the drive) and found many people I hadn't seen in over a year.

And within 20 minutes of arriving, my son was having a lovely asthma attack. I should have known better, our whole family has been been fighting one big nasty Cold (yes, capital C) for about two weeks.

What does that mean? It means that he's predisposed to having an asthma attack when an allergen irritates already inflammed bronchial-something-or-others. (Quick, polling closes soon! Get your votes in for me for Mother of the Yearrrrr!)

In my mind I was thinking about the 20 months or so that it's been since he had an asthma attack. So long, in fact, that all the medication we had for him has expired. His allergens are horses (if he touches them and then his face) and dust and shavings/sawdust (if he inhales them). We used to live on a nice little farm-type place, but had to move in fall 2004 because of these allergies.

But... but... but... we'd been around horses since then and I thought he was adjusting.

Nope.

(Mother of the Yearrrrr, I tell ya!)

Luckily, there happened to be a doctor right there at the show (what can I say, showing horses is for the rich) and she listened to his chest and wrote us out the two perscriptions we needed, plus an aerochamber to administer the puffers properly. She just grabbed a piece of paper and wrote all the info on it... then the challenge became to find a pharmacy that was open on Mother's Day Sunday. Turns out I had to drive about a half hour north to find the closest 24/7 pharmacy (By the way, the Hemi drives very smooth on the highway at about 160km/h) with a child that was dozing off... something that might have been ok had I not been concerned about his oxygen level.

By the time we got there, he was only slightly wheezing (boy - allergen = less wheezing) and I was back to driving the speed limit.

So, we're all good on the puffers again and my son is totally fine.

Happy Mother's Day!
  The Writing Mother
  posted at 8:40 PM
  1 comments



Saturday, May 13, 2006
Definition: Ineffective Protestations
A security officer removes a Greenpeace protester carrying a banner at the EU-Latin America summit in Vienna.

Honey... they weren't looking at your sign.
  The Writing Mother
  posted at 6:27 PM
  0 comments



Ten Random Goals
  1. Take a web design course at the local college.
  2. Incorporate new company. (total cheater... I'm doing that today)
  3. Land a column on something OTHER than my niche subject.
  4. Send non-fiction book proposal out to five more agents and five more publishers.
  5. Finish fiction manuscript. (I've been putting this one off because there's no direct pay off for the work. Read: I'm lazy.)
  6. Take a cover shot.
  7. Design and publish my new company web site.
  8. Keep family at $0 debt while on maternity leave.
  9. Hit target weight by the end of the year.
  10. Reorganize office & books

(editid to coreckt speling miztake)

  The Writing Mother
  posted at 2:41 PM
  3 comments



Friday, May 12, 2006
Things that make me happy
During the course of a day, I have to admit that I focus a little bit too much on things that make me unhappy. Yesterday I made a concerted effort to focus on the things that made me happy instead. What a difference.

  1. My husband who can laugh, even when I've just given him the dreaded sinus disease that's been plaguing our household, and who stayed home yesterday with my sick son and still got work done.
  2. Coffee still in the pot when I get in to work (as opposed to finding it empty)
  3. Kicks from my baby (not necessarily related to #1, but maybe)
  4. Winning Contests!!
  5. My son telling me he loves me
  6. Brand new Tupperware (I have a new bin! For my potatoes! And a cookie tin!)
  7. Brand New Books!
  8. Southern Butter Pecan creamer for my coffee
  9. 27 days of work left before maternity leave!
  10. 50 weeks of maternity leave (YAY Canada!)
  11. The fact that getting a divorce improved my relationship with my ex-MIL
  12. Finding a name for my new company and having the domain still be available
  13. My Grammar course at the local university (learning to love misplaced modifiers!)
  14. New sunglasses
  15. Tanning! Because it's almost Summer! (more specifically, Pryzma tanning beds that are safer and allow you to tan better in a shorter time. And before everyone goes all "but, but" on me. I'm a red head. If I don't develop a base tan, I burn. Burns cause cancer, not tans)
  16. Having written. Every once in a while I like writing, but I love having written.
  17. Debating. (followed by Debating and winning! and followed by Debating and learning!)
  18. Good Blogs From Writers I Admire ...
  19. Having. All. The. Laundry. In. The. House. Done. Did you hear me? DONE.
  20. Editorial meetings that land me more $$.
  The Writing Mother
  posted at 8:28 AM
  3 comments



Wednesday, May 10, 2006
Getting Ready for Summer
As I'm done work on June 21st (first day of summer!) I have started planning Things To Do with M. before the baby arrives in August. So far we have:

Calaway Park (must buy cheapo passes before May 23rd)

Zoo (need to renew in August)

Heritage Park (need to renew now...)

Major Man's buddy... oh, what shall I nickname this buddy... let's call him: The Other American.... so The Other American is coming here in July. Just in time for the Calgary Stampede. For The American Duo (as they shall be called), the Stampede = drinking and partying and a chance for The Other American to 'hook up' with some hot Canadian chick.

Little does he know that all the 'hot Canadian chicks' I know are all moms. And married. But have no fear... The Stampede is full of 'cowgirls'... aka, girls who roll out the jeans and the belly shirts and the rolled up cowboy hats to play cowgirl for nine days. With all the alcohol, there will be some 'chick' in this American-friendly town who will dig the midwest accent and fall all over The Other American. (I don't believe he'll care if she's a 'good apple' or not...)

I did remind him, though, that the highest birth rate in Calgary is exactly nine months after the Stampede, so he'd best be careful.

It is. Really. Proven fact.
  The Writing Mother
  posted at 8:18 PM
  1 comments



To Do List
What a cute little blog I found!
  The Writing Mother
  posted at 6:28 PM
  0 comments



Monday, May 08, 2006
Ok, you have to admit that this is funny...
Don't get me wrong... I LOVE Americans. I married one. But I love dumb Americans as much as I love pie-eyed peacenik Canadians.

This particular video is on those dumb Americans we love. It's called "which country to invade next".

The best part is when the respondants are asked to mark out various countries on a map.
  The Writing Mother
  posted at 7:43 PM
  1 comments



Forty Lives: One Destiny
Hat tip to Muttering in Manitoba:

Forty Lives: One Destiny

Just go there and look at the photos of those who lost their lives on United Flight 93. Their biographies should not be missed.

Like Deora Bodley.

"She was always thinking big and going after big game," said Chris Schuck, who
taught Bodley as chairman of the English department at La Jolla Country Day
School near San Diego, Calif.
As an 11-year-old, she wrote in one of her
journals, "People ask who, what, when, where, how and why. I ask peace."

Bodley, was a junior at Santa Clara University, where she majored in
psychology. An insightful writer who was fluent in French, she coordinated
college volunteers in a literacy program at a nearby elementary school.

Kathy Almazol, principal at St. Clare Catholic Elementary, said Bodley
had "a phenomenal ability to work with people," whether it was the children she
read to, her peer volunteers or the school administrators and teachers.

"We have 68 kids who had a personal association with Deora," Almazol
said.
Bodley wanted to be a child psychologist because she saw the problems
children faced growing up.

Growing up with her mother in San Diego --
her parents divorced when she was 2 -- Deora, which is Gallic for "tears,"
always seemed older than her age. She traveled with her father to Switzerland
when she was just 3 1/2 and often flew to the East Coast.
Schuck remembered
reading one of her middle school homework papers and being struck by her
honesty.

"You'd read her work and say, 'Am I that honest and truthful
with myself?' " he said.
As a high school student, she had enthusiastically
traveled to area high schools to discuss sexually transmitted diseases and AIDS
with her peers. She also volunteered with the Special Olympics and a local
animal shelter.

"She was just burning way too bright," said her mother,
Deborah Borza.

She recently found a journal entry written by her
daughter when she was 13.

"If I would just live for the moment," the
entry went, "and make every moment count, maybe the future would work out. Maybe
that moment would be a doorway to the future."
  The Writing Mother
  posted at 5:54 PM
  0 comments



Sunday, May 07, 2006
It's a beautiful day....
Yes, a beautiful spring day...

And I'm sick. Capital S Sick, actually.

I decree that there shall be no blogging today. I'm afraid I'm not really capable of thinking clearly enough to form opinions.

But because it's soccer season:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QZkB-hQMSVE&search=referee
  The Writing Mother
  posted at 11:55 AM
  1 comments



Friday, May 05, 2006
How my 4 year old REALLY learned the F-word.
I used to have a fairly foul mouth. It came from several years of training horses and muttering under my breath and was exasperated by a year working at a feedlot with 18,000 head of cattle and all male co-workers.

I could swear like a m-f, yes I could.

I could also castrate about 200 bulls a day, so there.

Once I had my son, I knew I'd sorta have to clean up my language. I didn't really want my son walking around at school saying, "no, bitch, I didn't do my homework." So I cleaned up the verbage at home. Because of this I've developed looks that say exactly what I want to, without actually saying them.

But I digress.

Much to my dismay, last summer my son learned to use the F-word. It's not as though he could use it properly in a sentance or anything (although it was tempting to teach him how to say 'effin' liberals') but more like a word used for shock value alone.

He only said it once around me. And yes, I smacked his mouth. Not hard... just with enough of that shock value to get through to him.

But apparently he had become very good at using it at day care whenever he was mad at a teacher. The believed he had gotten it from one of the other kids, a particularly sad case who had a crap family life. White trash mom and white trash dad sort of kid that you look at and want to take home and scrub his grubby little body down and give him a hair cut and feed him candy because he gets none of that at home.

But I think he might have learned it from me on a beautiful sunny spring day.

On said day, I decided to walk from our house to the local bookstore to try brainwash my son into loving books as much as I do. (it's working, by the way)

We came to a crosswalk, waited until it turned to walk and started across. Suddenly, a man turning left at the intersection (whose signal was not on) suddenly veered across the intersection and - seeing us - slammed on his brakes.

He stopped INCHES away from my left knee, with my hand on the hood of his car. My son had been on my right side and in defense, I had flung him a foot behind me, while still holding his hand... though he was now sitting on his butt in the crosswalk.

I slammed my hand down on the man's hood, proceeded to pick up my son and stomped around to the driver's side door.

This small man with thick glasses and a handicapped sign hanging from his rearview mirror rolled down his window about two inches.

Not quite enough space for my fist to fit through unfortunately.

I screamed a stream of foul-mouthed obsecenities at him with my son clutched on my hip. I jabbed my finger at his window and called him ever name I could possibly think of in my shaken brain. My son was completely silent, obviously sucking in my diatribe like only four year old sponge-children can do.

The man did the only thing he could have done, he squeaked a sorry out the window and drove off as I stomped over to the curb, clutching my son. Only then did I cry. Several people had been stuck at the light while this was going on and rolled down their windows to ask if we were alright. I nodded and continued to walk towards the bookstore, knowing I needed to sit down, hug my son and drink a strong coffee.

And that, I believe, is how my son really learned how to use the F-word.
  The Writing Mother
  posted at 12:22 PM
  0 comments



So, so wrong...
This post by Bad News Hughes may be the funniest, infantile, idiotic post I've ever read in my life. But I laughed so hard that I cried.
  The Writing Mother
  posted at 12:13 PM
  0 comments



Thursday, May 04, 2006
Bothered by the United 93 movie?
Why?

First, the families of U93 victims support the movie. Here. Here.

Second, 10% of the profits were being donated to a memorial fund. Again, with full support of the families.

Third... there's the argument that it's so. horribly. wrong. to benefit financially from a movie about such a tragedy.

Really.

Have you watched:

Schindler's List
Saving Private Ryan
Fahrenheit 9/11 (which, oh, by the way, made $204,114,517.00 and Moore did not donate any proceeds to charity, the company he sold the rights to did, though)
Bowling for Columbine
Pearl Harbor
Titanic

No one makes movies in Hollywood just for the joy of making movies. They do it for profit. If we relied on people making movies for the sake of charity... many important stories would never be told.
  The Writing Mother
  posted at 8:13 PM
  3 comments



Memo to Soccer Dad
While you are over on the sidelines whining because your son has to take turns with the ball... while you are berating your five year old for not remembering which net is his... while you arguing with the coach (aka: me) about which field we are on... while you are commenting about my son's inability to kick properly .... ("what, did he learn everything from his mom?")

Please remember:

I am taking the time out of my day to coach these children while almost 6 months pregnant and I think that they are ALL wonderful, cute and precious kids that deserve praise... yes, they deserve praise just because they run. Just because they try.

And YES I will continue to praise BOTH TEAMS for their efforts. It's called sportsmanship, buddy. Just because you show up to practice in track pants and I can barely squeeze into mine, doesn't mean that you are a superstar.

And yes, there are kids that are faster, kids that are quicker, kids that are bigger. But keep in mind that they are kids. The point of U6 (under six years old) Soccer is to make sure that they are having FUN.

So while you may sneer at my games, and you may think that me giving them "magic stickers" for their shoes to teach them how to kick properly is lame... let me remind you.

I'm the coach, asshole, so back off.

Oh, and while you are on the sidelines bitching... next time make sure you aren't bitching to my son's grandmother. Idiot.
  The Writing Mother
  posted at 11:12 AM
  0 comments



Wednesday, May 03, 2006
Don't Forget
President Bush released the following statement today after the announcement that Moussaoui will spend the rest of his life in prison:

Bush: One year ago, Zacarias Moussaoui pled guilty in federal court to six counts of terrorism, including conspiracy to murder innocent Americans. He openly rejoiced at their deaths. This afternoon, the jurors in his sentencing trial concluded that this man should spend the rest of his life in prison.

Our thoughts today are with the families who lost loved ones on September 11th, 2001. Our Nation continues to grieve for the men, women, and children who suffered and died that day. We are still deeply touched by the memory of rescuers who gave all, the passengers who ran a hijacked plane into the ground to prevent an even greater loss of life, and the frightened souls who comforted one another during their final moments on earth.

The end of this trial represents the end of this case, but not an end to the fight against terror. The enemy that struck our shores on September 11th is still active, and remains determined to kill Americans. We will stay on the offensive against the terrorists. We will end their ability to plot and plan. We will deny them safe haven and the ability to gain weapons of mass murder. In these four and a half years, with good allies at our side, the United States has killed or captured many terrorists, shut down training camps, broken up terror cells in our own country, and removed regimes that sponsored terror. We have many dedicated men and women fully engaged in this fight - in the military, intelligence, and homeland security; law enforcement personnel; and federal investigators and prosecutors who gather the evidence, make the case, and ensure that justice is done. They are doing superb work every day to remove this danger and to protect our country.

We have had many victories, yet there is much left to do, and I will not relent in this struggle for the freedom and security of the American people. And we can be confident. Our cause is right, and the outcome is certain: Justice will be served. Evil will not have the final say. This great Nation will prevail.

The western world should never forget this day. Watching the video still brings me to tears, this video, with the voices on the tape crying out ... it's like no time has passed.
  The Writing Mother
  posted at 5:35 PM
  2 comments



Tuesday, May 02, 2006
Who's the smartest man around?
Why it's Dilbert of course! Well, technically it's Scott Adams who has a funny post up on his blog today about the Income Gap.

I keep hearing pundits whining about the growing gap between the rich and the poor. I have difficulty empathizing with that viewpoint for two reasons:

1. Poor people can vote.
2. There are more poor people than
rich people.

In theory, those unhappy poor people could vote to tax the living piss out of the super rich. Why don’t they do it?

I know you’ll say the system is rigged in favor of big money, and the voters are manipulated into voting against their own self interests. That’s all true of course. Still, if you’re looking to place blame, it has to be on the low income people who
don’t vote. If ever there was an appropriate time for the phrase “It’s your own
damned fault,” it’s now.

  The Writing Mother
  posted at 9:16 AM
  8 comments



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