Posts Tagged ‘kids’

Hello Toronto, nice to see you again.

Toronto PostcardSo we recently headed into downtown Toronto with the kids for a visit with my brother. He’d moved to a new condo and we were dying to see it. The three year old hadn’t been on a train before, nor had she been to the city so this was an epic day for her. Along for the ride was my mom, the seven year old (who loved imparting many words of supposed wisdom of his many trips into the city), myself and the three year old.

Once settled on the train I noticed with dread that we were seated in the section with all the emergency exit signs and pulls. Of course the kids noticed all the brightly coloured, green pulls as well. What ensued was me making a threat that if they were pulled, a policeman would come and put them in jail (okay, I know that’s harsh, but you should have seen the gleam in their eyes as they stared at those emergency handles). The rest of the train ride was uneventful, just the usual stuff like the 3YO refusing to hold my hand as we were disembarking, thus stopping the flow of traffic behind us which resulted in me just hauling her along crying.

We arrived at my brother’s condo which is in the heart of a gorgeous part of the city and on the thirty-seventh floor. Spectacular view-the kids were very impressed. We then headed out for lunch. And oh, I miss this so much about the city…being able to step out your door and WALK everywhere. We had a lovely lunch and wandered around and then went back to his place for a while before heading back to the train and the burbs…

I used to go to school downtown Toronto for two years and I never realized just how much I miss it. DH (from Toronto originally) and I used to go all the time. Since kids…not often. I had a moment while we were walking outside that just gripped me out of nowhere and it was that yearning for my ‘other’ self. The one I rarely think about. The twenty-something, pre-kid-pre-mortgage-version of myself. And even though it was just last decade, it seems as far ago as my childhood. I love my life now, truly I know how blessed I am. But do you ever get those moments where you remember who you were before the truly adult version of yourself?

The Second Time Around

old-82901_640I drove myself crazy before and the first few weeks during the release of THE BILLIONAIRE’S CHRISTMAS BABY.  Why?  Reviews.  I drove everyone around me nuts.  I had a nightmare that the night my book was to be released, I’d wake up to five 1-star reviews.  I questioned why I had ever entered writing, why I would willingly put my work out their for public scrutiny.  I never realized how insecure I could be.  It was terrifying.  But I had to be a big girl and come to terms with the fact that not everyone in the playground was going to be my friend.  Not everyone was going to like me.

It reminded me of when I was in grade one and too shy or nervous to talk to anyone at my new school.  So I’d stand by the fence at recess and count down the minutes until it was over.  It took me a year to make friends.  But I was six, and I’ve come a long way since then ;-)  I’m not shy or introverted (though if I’m at a big party I’d still rather people-watch than make conversation with people I don’t know).  I would never want my kids to feel shy and to let their own insecurities stop them from fulfilling a dream (luckily I don’t think this will happen to either of my kids, who take after their father-the life of the party).

This time?  Yeah, I’m nervous again.  But I’m also a little tougher, a little wiser.  I’ve decided I’m a writer and I’m not going anywhere.  There will be readers and reviewers that don’t like my books.  But there will also be readers and reviewers that do.  I’ve connected with so many wonderful people and have had emails from so many lovely readers.  Every wonderful review that was posted filled me with excitement.  I want to be an example for my kids, to show them that it’s okay to put yourself out there, regardless of the results.  It’s okay to take chances, it’s okay to keep trying, it’s okay to face criticism.  All of that really does make you stronger.

In my upcoming book, my heroine has suffered some huge losses in her life-and taking a chance at loving someone again seems too painful, too risky.  But Holly needs to come to terms with the fact that in order to really live, she does need to love.  And love can be risky, and without guarantees…lucky for her I’m guaranteeing a happily ever after for them ;-)

So this second time around, I’m going to gather up that courage that I’ve forced upon my heroine, and I’m going to be calmer and more Zen-like.  I’m going to take a little bit of the control-freak away and just go with the flow…

…and I’m going to work on that next book-or maybe clean the house.  Nah.  Wine!

My favourite time of year…

I’m so happy we made it to autumn.  This is my absolute favourite time of year.  Cool mornings and evenings, crisp air filled with the smell of freshly fallen leaves.  Oh, and kids back in school :-)

DS started grade one at a new school last Wednesday.  This was huge for him (and me).  I think I may have been more nervous than he.  It took me an hour to pack his lunch (don’t ask) and all the while I kept thinking how fast everything flew by.  I could have sworn my little guy was just a baby a few months ago.  Now, he’s off to grade one.  He had a great first day, loved his class, and his ‘big kid’ school.  HUGE relief!  I still have the almost-two-year old at home with me, so the days are packed.

This wasn’t the best of summers, so I am happy to see it go.  Radiation for my dad ended the last week of August, and in December he will hopefully get the all-clear.  He’s looking good, so that’s a nice indicator that he should be fine.  We managed to squeeze in one last trip to the beach before school for the kids, so that makes me feel a little better that the boring summer for the kids ended on a high note.

As for my writing…well it’s been a challenge.  For the first time in a long, long time, I’ve really struggled with productivity.  The whole summer was filled with chaos, lack of routine, and those daily trips to the hospital.  And it’s taken it’s toll.  I feel like I’m finally getting back into the swing of things.  And boy do I need to…

I’m gearing up for a huge year-I’m working on a super secret project (I can’t believe I’m actually writing that), as well as finishing up a proposal that should have been done a while ago, and I’m waiting to hear on a proposal that was sent in during the summer.  My first book releases in November!  As soon as I have the title I’ll share…

Now that routine is back, I’m starting my 5am wake-ups again…and I do love them.  The trick to making them work though, is by being asleep by 11pm.  I know that this 5 am slot is my time, without any of the interruptions and unexpected duties that the day inevitably brings.  And it’s nice to know that some word count has been done by the time DD and I are walking DS to school.

Here’s to a happy, healthy, productive autumn….with plenty more blog posts!

Whatever happened to…

those lazy days of summer?  I haven’t seen one!  This summer has been filled with so much running around and juggling that lazy is the last word I’d use to describe it.  But we’re getting through it.  We’ve even managed to get out to a bunch of our favourite kiddie places, including the close-by Provincial park.  Kids love it (there are animals that they can visit and terrorize) and trails where we can try and get some good walking done.  Of course, we usually stop at Tim Horton’s to pick up a coffee, so we can actually have enough energy to walk :-)

My dad’s treatment is going well, and he only has 3 weeks left of radiation.  The days have been filled with trying to juggle the kids, the hospital, housework, and oh, yeah, writing!  But we’re managing.  And we’re planning on celebrating with my dad on his last day of radiation.

I must confess though, I’m SO looking forward to September…

 

A state of emergency was called…

My coffee maker broke yesterday.  We had a house full of people and there I was, pouring the coffee when, SNAP, the handle split from the glass carafe and it crashed on the counter top.  Hot coffee spilled everywhere.  But that wasn’t the tragedy.  It was broken.  BROKEN.

State of emergency?  Well, yes.  Without coffee, children won’t be fed, dressed, bathed.  Chaos will erupt.  Word count goals won’t be met.  In essence, the house will cease to run.

So, bright and early, I got out my trusty little Italian, stove-top espresso maker  (yup, it was purchased in Italy, over a decade ago at a little ‘mercato’ in my father’s village) and brewed a delightful cup of Illy coffee…And then I grabbed the kids and hightailed it over to the mall where I purchased a gleaming, new, pretty-looking coffee maker.

Now, I’m not known for my skills of assembly or instruction manuel interpretation (my eyes cross over and the words suddenly look foreign), but I got this baby set up in record time.  And now, I’m sipping my second cup of freshly ground Ethiopian coffee…oh, and writing…

I promise, no more posts on coffee…

Bribery isn’t always wrong…is it?

My plan for getting writing done while away this week is to put DD down for a nap, and then take DS out to the little coffee shop in town.  The coffee shop is also a bakery, which all plays into my plan…

I have purchased a stack of colouring/activity books, a Cars 2 sticker book, new markers, new pencil crayons…all in the hopes that DS can entertain himself for at least one hour while I try and get some writing done.  I have also promised him a yummy treat every day at the coffee shop as well.  We’ll see if he can remain silent for longer than 5 minutes…

Pass the coffee, please.

Yawn…so how do you function when your sleep is cut up into small portions because your children (ages 5 and 16mos) should be sleeping through the night, and yet for one reason or another are up?

Our first child, started sleeping through the night more often than not by the age of 2 months-WOW.  We were spoiled and didn’t even know it because we were busy adjusting to life as new parents lol.  DD, our second child, has still not mastered the art of sleeping through the night and it’s slowly killing me…

Now, they have started taking turns.  One night it’s DD.  The next night it’s DS.

And then this morning, as I was pressing snooze on my alarm, wondering why I came up with the ‘brilliant’ idea of waking up early to write in the morning, I heard the pitter-pattering…actually no, more like the loud thumping of my son’s feet (I don’t know how someone who weighs like 45lbs could be so loud, but anyway…) in the hallway.  I ask him what he’s doing awake at this time of the morning (this is 5:15 am-remember).  So he says, “well, you wake up at this time, why can’t I?”  So I, of course tell him to go back to bed, using the “I’m a grown-up,” line.  I need to guard this time like a precious gem.  Seriously, now even my obscene waking hours are being threatened?

Ahhh!!!!

Well, it’s a good thing it’s one of my favourite times of year in Canada…Roll up the Rim!  I will be frequenting Timmy’s this morning…

 

 

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