Category archive for Blog


This has been a big week in the life of our little Ellie Bean. First she discovered her ears (and spent 48 hours tugging on them in a way that made us worry she had a double ear infection), and then she figured out how to swing at the toys hanging down from her activity mat (all the while chattering away to communicate her enthusiasm for this particular pastime), and then she slept for 12 hours (TWICE!), and then she laughed for the first time (at my dad, about 45 minutes after I lamented to him that she hadn’t done it yet), and then she discovered her bottom lip and the corresponding ability to blow raspberries. (more…)

Raindrops on roses, whiskers on kittens

The purple coneflowers we planted in our side garden last year are blooming like crazy. Every time I round the corner onto our street and see them, in all of their purple coneflowery splendor, I get a little rush of happiness.

There is a new David’s Tea location that just opened in Waterloo. I went there this morning, and it was a very soothing experience, wandering around and sniffing teas, even though Ellie decided halfway through that she was hungry and tired and generally NOT INTERESTED in hanging around while I dithered over flavours. I’m currently sipping a mug of their Buttered Rum flavour, which contains coconut and vanilla (and sadly no actual rum).

Now that the postal strike has ended and the mailpeople seem to have worked their way through most of the backlog, I’ve received the two issues of Real Simple that were languishing unread in a dusty warehouse somewhere. This means I can spend a few minutes of Ellie’s naptime every day drinking a hot beverage and daydreaming about all of the various projects I will likely never attempt and yet very much enjoy contemplating, like repainting an old dresser or making a peach galette or wearing the right type of jeans for my body type.

I just ordered three pairs of baby legwarmers. I am anticipating X-Treme Cuteness when they arrive.

Baby koalas!


July 26 was the 8-year anniversary of the day Mike stood up in front of a small group of our family and closest friends and promised to love, honour, and cherish me even though I have no idea where our ironing board is. Our friend Bethany babysat for a couple of hours and we went out to dinner at our favourite restaurant in Guelph, where we discussed how much our lives have changed in the past year and then argued a little bit about the role government should play in administering social services. It was a lovely evening and pretty representative of our marriage, as was the pro tip Mike whispered conspiratorially to Ellie the other day when I disappeared into our room to get changed into (as I put it) “real pants” only to appear again wearing my purple plaid pajama bottoms: “Just so you know, when Mommy says ‘pants’ she ALMOST ALWAYS means ‘pajamas’.”

There’s no denying I’m a very lucky woman.

For sale

Lest I give you the mistaken impression that my life is now all long, luxurious sleeps and snuggly babies in feetie pajamas, I feel I need to disclose that sometimes it’s also taking 90 minutes to complete the 45-minute bedtime routine while Mike is at baseball, and staggering exhausted to the basement only to discover a giant centipede that withstood 8 smashes with a heavy book before finally dying in a fashion that was unconvincing enough I keep going back to check if it’s still dead. (Yes, I am leaving the carcass for Mike to clean up when he gets home. I AM ONLY HUMAN, PEOPLE.)

In related news, we must move immediately. Does anyone want to buy an adorable 3-bedroom home on a quiet cul-de-sac? Priced to move. Only somewhat infested with horrifying unkillable insects.

Side effects

Pleasant side effects of having a baby:

  • For some reason, I feel less silly talking to Ellie than I do when I talk to the pets. Possibly because she often smiles in agreement when I pass judgment on the wardrobes of Food Network show hosts. (Why the yoga capris, Matt Dunnigan? WHY?!)
  • People say Ellie looks like me. People also say she is very cute. By way of transitive property, me = very cute.
  • There is always someone available to snuggle on a moment’s notice. Especially lovely when that someone is wearing footie pajamas.

Not entirely unpleasant side effects of having a baby that still require some adjustment on my part: (more…)


I have a plant in my office that starts at the top left corner of a very tall bookcase, then crawls across the top of the bookcase, down the side, and then a few feet across the floor. I’ve cut it back a few times, but I tend to let it grow, mostly out of fascinated curiosity. How long will it possibly GROW? I hardly ever water it, and the room is dark this time of year due to an overgrown maple tree right outside the window. It somehow thrives in spite of this, and there is a very real possibility that the plant will eventually eat us or kill us in our sleep, which is why I named it Rick Moranis. (Well, the other reason I named it Rick Moranis is because of a miscommunication with Mike, wherein he referenced Little Shop of Horrors and I incorrectly thought he meant that Rick Moranis played the plant.) At any rate, having a plant named thusly is enjoyable for two reasons: firstly, it is oddly entertaining to refer to a plant by both a first name and last name, due to the feeling of formality it gives the plant, and secondly, when Mike says things like “Your plant is OUT OF CONTROL!” I can indigantly and coldly respond with, “HE HAS A NAME YOU KNOW.” (more…)


I had a whole blog post typed yesterday, but I ended up discarding it because I was complaining about something that makes me sound like a jerk, and thankfully I realized that before I hit the publish button. There are just some things that I think I should just keep to myself, or maybe just grumble to Mike, because he loves me and as my husband is legally obligated to listen to me even when I sound like an idiot. At any rate, I will share something that will likely still make some people hate me, but it is so new and exciting to me, I just can’t keep it to myself.  (more…)


Before Ellie arrived, I think I was aware (at least on some level) that the only thing predictable about this whole parenthood thing would be the complete and total inability to predict any aspect of it from one moment to the next. I don’t think I ever could have realized, though, just how dizzying the highs would be, how terrifying the lows would be, and how the whole process would be completely devoid of creamy middles. It’s like a rollercoaster. Or rather, it’s like how I THINK a rollercoaster would be, because I hate any sort of ride that reaches speeds any faster than I can achieve on my bicycle, and on the rare occasions I have visited an amusement park in the past, I have wiled away the hours eating funnel cake, holding purses, and wishing I wasn’t such a chicken. (more…)


So there is a baby. She’s been here almost 3 weeks, in fact, but I’m just getting around to this now because although I have become quite adept at doing a number of things one-handed, typing a blog post one letter at a time wasn’t something I was too eager to accomplish. Even now, the baby is awake on my shoulder, making this a bit more difficult than I had anticipated. She’s awake far more often now than she was for the first week or two, and although she is generally a very happy sort of baby, I’m finding it is requiring a bit of adjustment on my part, because I know what to do with a sleeping baby (snuggle it, obviously, and look admiringly at it, and tell it quietly that it’s the cutest baby ever) but I don’t have the first clue what to do with a baby that is awake. Especially if it is awake at 3:00 in the morning, like this particular baby was last night, when she has thus far been a pretty good sleeper and we had gotten used to a nice quiet night-time routine of uneventful feeding and sleeping. (I have discovered already that parenthood is very much about continually adjusting expectations. I have also discovered that parenthood is not, or at least should not be, about wearing v-neck t-shirts, because that is a sure-fire way to end up with barf in your cleavage.)

Anyway, she arrived at 11:11 on April 28, weighing in at a nice average 7 pounds 3 ounces, and while her arrival was a little difficult and generally pretty unpleasant she has, since then, been a pleasure to be around pretty much 90% of the time (for the other 10%, see above re: 3:00 a.m.) as she is a very easygoing sort of baby in a way that I believe confirms her paternity pretty conclusively (not that there was every any doubt in my mind, but it is still nice nonetheless to see that she has at least one of Mike’s most wonderful character traits). Of course, there’s always someone who sees or hears how nicely she is adjusting to life on the outside, as it were, and feels the need to tell us to not bother enjoying it, because it is just going to get SO MUCH WORSE, which frankly is a phenomenon that we find more than a  little bit mystifying, but I guess I will just have to shelve it in my brain with all the OTHER things I don’t understand, like calculus and why people feel the need to put peas in perfectly good soups and/or pot pies.

Before we had her, people told me reassuringly/terrifyingly that in many ways our lives would change dramatically, and in many other ways things would stay remarkably the same. I think that is a pretty accurate assessment of the situation. In a lot of ways, her arrival into our family and our lives has totally rocked my world, and in other ways it kind of feels like she was always meant to be here. I hope she feels that way too.

Treasure hunt

I have a secret confession to make: if there was any scenario in which it would make sense for me to do so, I would seriously consider packing it all in to become a famous archaeologist. The idea of hunting for glittering reservoirs of long-lost treasure fills me with such excitement I don’t even know how to explain it. I have watched the movie National Treasure more times than any one person should really watch such a terrible movie (and it really IS terrible, but it stars Nicolas Cage, who is at the top of my Celebrity Free Pass List, for reasons I don’t understand and can’t explain) (or at least he WAS at the top of that list, until he got arrested last week for domestic violence) (but I’m too heartbroken to really comment on that at this point) and every time they unearth the treasure (spoiler alert!) I actually get goosebumps. (more…)