Thursday, May 31, 2007

More on e-post

Maybe I'm losing it. Could be because I haven't "worked" outside the home surrounded by adults in years.

Maybe all this baby-talk/toddler-talk that I thought I was enjoying is making my brain to MUSH.

But after attempting to make my life easier what with all the paper statements and bills coming into this house, and e-post not working as well as I had expected, we (he and I) had a, um, loud discussion.

I may have used a couple of phrases in my uproar that my little toddler now repeats occasionally. Out on the porch for the neighbours to hear.

Not good.

Maybe I should go back to hurling spoons at him (the hubby, not the toddler).

Anyway. I had tried to make the water bill paperless. It wouldn't let me. It wasn't until after our "loud discussion" that I realized I selected the wrong Hydro title of the bill from the pull-down selection.


AND, although I did succeed in making one of the bank statements paperless, I read in the agreement fine print that a $2 charge would apply. I figured, since it will make my life easier having one less statement to file (or place on a pile in a room to be filed at some point later in life) I could live with the fee.

Well, hubby had a fit.

"Another two bucks? They already charge us an arm and a leg in fees" etc.

He had a point but I was so pissed off at a) my oversight, b) the fact that he didn't appreciate that this would make my life, and therefore his life by default, easier, and c) that he was right, sort of, that I just lost it.

Like I said, I could have handled it better. Throwing spoons when the little guy wasn't looking or hurling insults when he wasn't in the house, for example.

He ended up picking up the phone and calling the bank, and here's what's getting me even more:

I misread that fine print too! The charge I was referring to was applicable to people who update their bank books at the machine.

I can't even remember the last time I had a bank book, much less update it at a bank machine.

So the chick at the bank told him that there was no additional charge, and the paperless statement remains paperless.

The good news is, I got some of the bills moved to e-post.

The bad news is that Ben now knows certain phrases which I hope he won't repeat at daycare.


e-post continued

I succeeded in adding one, single, lonely bill.

What a bunch of crap.

We're co-joint on all the bills, but HE is the primary one, so HE has to answer all these idiotic questions on the forms.

You ever tried to ask mundane questions about bills to a husband who's so not interested in stuff like that?

I'd rather have a root canal.

I did manage to make one of the bank statements paperless. Although they (the bank, not e-post) charge 2 bucks for the service.

So now the only bill I won't be receiving in paper form anymore is Bell Canada.



I have decided that I need to eliminate, or at least drastically reduce, the amount of paper that comes into this house.

Ok. The paper is a necessity for some people, and I admit, I like flipping through it when I have a moment to procrastinate. Or rather, take a moment.

But almost every single day the mail person delivers envelopes of statements, most of which say the same thing every time, and most of which I check regularly on the web anyway.

So...why am I typing this post?

Because I'm procrastinating. That's why.

Too many steps to figure out how to go about this.

Although A has an account already.
And I know his sign on and pass word.
But I'd have to go to the pile of papers distributed evenly throughout the livingroom and find pertinent information in order to fill out the online forms that inevitably must be filled out.
Which means I'd have to get up off this chair.

Maybe when I have to pee, which is about every 20 minutes or so, I'll make the effort.

Until then....


Sunday, May 27, 2007

Crappy day

I am almost as worn out as the toddler is.

We have had something to do every single day this week, with visiting and playing and people and kids. So today, with the weather being crappy and rainy, we're taking a down-day.

Toddler's crashed on the couch, and I'm finally uploading some pics to flickr. Just in case the laptop decides to give up its ghost. Wouldn't want to lose those memories.

Daddy left in a huff to go to work.

He's in a huff because I threw a spoon at him.

I threw a spoon at him because I'm pissed off because the plumbing underneath the kitchen sink is busted and has been for months, years, who knows. No matter what we do it keeps leaking all over the kitchen floor. We may have to replace all of the plumbing underneath there, but will he call a plumber? No. He hates dealing with anything house-maintenance related.


I know nothing about plumbing. I figure since I do all of the house maintenance around here, he could volunteer to take on this one little project. All he has to do is call a reputable plumber or a friend who is plumber-inclined, and get the fucking thing fixed.

If he doesn't do it tomorrow I'm going to call the most expensive plumber I can find and have the entire kitchen sink ripped out and, depending on how hormonal I feel then, replace it not just with new plumbing, but also with a shiny, expensive dishwasher.


Sunday, May 20, 2007

Teething and co-sleeping

I am coping with this teething situation and the only reason I am is because I allow him to co-sleep with me.

Will teething ever end? He's 26 months old and drooling like a slobbery dog. After the second night of whining and whimpering, I drugged him with Tempra which gave him enough relief that he could at least fall asleep. Whining for three consecutive hours prior to that wasn't fun for him, for me, or for the extended neighbourhood who had to listen to it.

Today is a bit better. I found the Advil, which lasts 4 hours longer than the Tempra, and he's napping at his regular time, as opposed to 10:30 am. Made him walk with me to the store before hand, stopped at ever interesting-looking thing on the 10 min walk up to the store, picked up stones and placed them in his pocket, climbed what was climbable, crossed the street a few times, and allowed him to snack on a few smarties even.

The snuggle time on the couch watching Mighty Machines was nice too, although I was almost asleep before him.

Wiped away drool so many times until I finally just had to dig out a baby bib to place around his neck, which solved that problem temporarily.

Poor baby.

More on poop, and pee

He knows all about poops in the toilet.

But he doesn't poop in the toilet. He doesn't poop in the potty either.

So if the poops are dry enough, I dump them from the diaper into the toilet in front of him and he gets to say goodbye and flush them away. So he KNOWS where the poops are supposed to go.

Now, when we change a poopy diaper, he says "no more poops in diapers".

Waiting anxiously for warmer weather so I can stick the potty outside and have him be at least dry during the day by the end of summer.

He does however pee in the potty at home semi-regularly, and on his own. Meaning, I don't have to ask him to go. All I have to do is get him naked, or at least bare bottomed, and if he has to go, he goes to the potty. He also cleans out the potty himself, by taking the cup thing and pouring it down the toilet, and flushing the pee away.

Sometimes, when I change his diaper prior to dropping him off at his classroom at school, I sit him on the toilet there and he pees.

It is happening....

Saturday, May 19, 2007

Dumping liquids

This is becoming a favorite habit.

So I'm running his bathwater, and step out quickly to get a towel. I come back into the bathroom and there is the little dumper, pouring a 900 ml bottle of bath bubbles into two inches of bathwater.

The entire bathtub was pink, slimy, and smelled like bubblegum or something of the sort.

Good thing I buy the cheap stuff at No Frills.

* * *

Yesterday I buy him a new bottle of bubbles. I tighten the lid, and place it on the patio table. I leave to go get something, and when I come back....yes. Half the bottle of bubbles is on the deck.

I managed to salvage the other half.

* * *

What is this fascination with pouring? I'm in the habit now of saving every interesting-looking container for him so he can pour to his heart's content. In the bath, outside when the weather is warm enough, eventually at the pool.

Thursday, May 17, 2007

Random this and that

My editor accepted my article. She sent my invoice to accounting. I'm going to get a paycheck for this work. Yay.

I have phone calls to make to people who have been trying to reach me. I'm putting it off because the sun is shining and I have to pick up Benjamin at daycare.

Hubby left for a fishing trip for four days. Benjamin saw the car with canoe and trailer with fishing boat and said "I'm coming" and "I'm sishing too". His lip pushed forward and his eyes filled with tears when daddy and the guys left him behind.

The sun is shining, but it's cool out there. Maybe I will plant some more stuff in my garden. Maybe not.

I must, must, must vaccuum the livingroom. Maybe I'll do it later.

I have been eating consistently since 10 am. I've had breakfast, snack, lunch and snack. It's 10:41 am.

The food I've been eating should not make me fat or induce me with gestational diabetes. I made a Chickpea Salad a few days ago and simply stuffed the leftovers in a greek pita with some torn lettuce. Had four pieces in all.

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Sanity Savers when you're extra tired

Here's what works for me when:

*toddler didn't sleep through the night,
*toddler won't nap today,
*it's raining, and
*I have a headache (or any other symptom that reduces my patience level to minimum)

1. Clean something. Specifically vacuum cleaning is recommended, but mopping will work nicely too. The trick is to do something that requires you to keep moving. If you take a breather on the couch, you may never get up again. And with luck, the whiny kid will enjoy "helping" with the broom or duster or vacuum cleaner. You can take turns.

2. Bathe said toddler PRIOR to supper. Put him in trackpants so he won't get the pjs full of doghair and then let him play or watch a video. (Or stick him behind a gate and let him whine it out while the droning of the vacuum cleaner tunes out the whine. Hey, you do what you have to do to make it to bedtime...)

3. If you suspect he will fall asleep significantly earlier than is desireable (you do after all still want him to sleep through the night and not wake up at 3 am) then prep some yoghurt with berries, put some cheerios and raisins in a bowl, slice up an apple, give him some milk, and hope to prolonge the quiet/awake time until at least not too much earlier than the regular bedtime. Leftovers work too. The point is to make sure he does have something in his tummy. Try not to miss that precious window of opportunity where he will go to sleep a tad earlier than usual, like say an hour prior to the regular bedtime (rather than three hours prior).

Note: none of the above is a guarantee that it'll work. I have found that it does most of the time for our situation, but there are days/nights when meltdowns occur and the entire plan goes up shit's creek. Those nights I simply take the cranky toddler to bed with me, even if it's only 7 pm, turn off the light, and get an extra hour or two of well-deserved sleep myself. It'll be up to daddy to move the child from his spot when he arrives from wherever he was.

Saturday, May 12, 2007

Mother's Day

I'm not big on any commercialized celebrations. But he grew this plant, and made the paper flower (with help!) at school, for Mother's Day. My little 2-year cute.

Spring in Toronto

Today it feels more like fall. I'm wearing a fleece jacket. Yet yesterday we were feeling heat and humidity. Ben was in diaper and t-shirt. Go figure.

Friday, May 11, 2007

Final Draft

So I finished the final draft. I have just over 1000 words. I sent it on to the guy who will look it over, and hope it comes back with not too many changes. Either way, I'm about two weeks ahead of schedule. We'll see what happens. I'm nervous and excited both at the same time!

Writing from home with a toddler in part-time daycare is interesting at best. Although he does still nap, I can't count on naptime to happen or to remain quiet and without distraction. I also find myself in a slump in mid afternoon so writing during naptime is not something I'm very good at. Maybe doing research or editing, but not really being creative. Mornings are definitely better for me.

So I have to discipline myself to do it while he's in daycare. Which is a bit of a challenge as some of the habits I formed while he is out of the house had to be changed. Like, grocery shopping. Last week I had to shop on a Saturday. Don't like that. Prefer to do it on Thursday or Friday mornings. But the reality is that I have to take advantage of the quiet mornings to write my stuff or to make phone calls, and the groceries will just have to wait.

Luckily I live in an area that has plenty of little stores within walking distance where I can pick up odd items to help us get through the rest of the week. Besides, Ben likes shopping at the delis. May as well make him do it with me and get him walking and tired.

Things are looking up.

Tuesday, May 08, 2007


Every night I sink into bed with the sombering thought that tomorrow I'll get to the stuff I didn't get to today.

This morning I got to some stuff I didn't think about last night but has accumulated in the back corner of my mind reserved for the never-ending to-do list.

Like washing the outside windows. Well, was more like take the hose and spray it down and water the front garden while you're at it kind of thing.

* * *

We got a new vacuum cleaner. A Miele S4000 and it has an airtight HEPA filter. The old one was a Beaumark brand without a filter and it was noisy and heavy. Did I mention it didn't have a filter?

The dog hair was/is still driving me mental.

This new toy, my special, little, new, quiet, filtered vaccuum cleaner is sitting in the middle of the livingroom floor beckoning me to start sucking.

Except there is so much clutter and crap everywhere I can't possibly begin. Why won't to any good anyway.

And with the nice weather we've been having, I have not felt like staying indoors and putting away clutter.

* * *

Right now, I'm staring at a steaming hot cup of coffee and waiting for the tape to finish taping. I want to watch last night's Y&R which is playing today on another channel. It's my one little guilty pleasure. Sit, drink coffee, watch Y&R and relax for a bit. I think I deserve it considering I had a toddler helping me spray the windows (among other things) all morning.

Did I mention he's on his third outfit, and it's only naptime??

Can't wait for the permanent summer weather to stick around so I can dress him in less.

Friday, May 04, 2007

Toddler shoe shopping

Actually, the title is deceiving. Benjamin was fine. He was well behaved and enjoyed trying on two pairs of sandals, with and without socks.

It's the stupid chick with the ladder I would have liked to smack around a bit.

So we're at the end of the aisle, back where the wall is, trying on shoes. I placed Ben's shoes and socks which he wore to the store aside, next to one aisle, and the boxes of sandals we were contemplating buying on the other side.

A lady was halfway down the same aisle browsing the women's shoes.

There were two of those seat things with the mirrors that customers can sit on situated in between the lady browsing and us.

While watching Ben walk around with the one pair of sandals, I see in my peripheral vision a sales woman pushing a ladder on wheels. She's coming up our aisle, but is still beyond the browsing lady.

I figure most people have enough common sense to stay out of the way of a toddler trying on shoes, so I don't give it another thought.

As Ben changes direction and walks off in the perpendicular direction to the aisle we were in, I get bumped from behind.

Yes, you guessed it. The chick with the ladder.

Not only did she bump me ("sorry, I didn't see you there"), but she rode over Ben's socks and shoes. She also barely made it past those seat things that were there for the customers to sit on should they be so inclined.

I just turned aorund and said to her: "can't you go the other way"?

She mumbled something about not seeing us or our stuff there. Apparently, an adult, a toddler, shoes and boxes of sandals are invisible. Not the mention the two seat thingies (what are those called anyway?) she had to maneuver around.

I just packed up and left without the sandals.

Too bad really, since the sandals fit and were a decent price too.

I'm really pissed off.

Thursday, May 03, 2007

My problem with the phone

I hate the phone.

I hate making phone calls and I hate receiving phone calls.

Some of that stems from the days when I was a flight attendant and we used to get called day and night to come and work extra flights. There was never enough crew to operate all the flights they scheduled. Or delayed. Or had mechanicals. And flight attendants aren't regulated by Transport Canada the same way pilots are. Crew rest is not something that was necessarily respected. So that phone rang. Incessantly.

Some of my friends who worked with me at that company have developed the same allergy against phones. It's nice to see I'm not the only one.

Then there is the problem of not hearing very well. I feel apprehension when the phone rings and the call display states a number, or name, I don't recognize. What if that person has a bad line, or the connection has static? What if he (it's usually a he) has a quiet voice? What if they speak too fast, or mumble?

None of these problems mattered much up to now. Because of call display I could choose to ignore the phone, which I did most of the time. Unless it was hubby, or my mom. Or someone I knew.

But now, I'm a Freelance Writer Working From Home and I receive business calls on our residential line.


Note to self: change the voicemail message to something more generic.

The anxiety I go through. The dreams/nightmares I have anticipating a bad connection, or misinterpreting important information.

I am a stress case.

Yet today, things are looking up.

First of all, I managed to make contact with actual, real people who returned my calls. I had planned on making phone calls today and although I imitated my toddler's delay tactics (aka procrastination) I forced myself to JUST DO IT while Benjamin was in daycare.

It was then or never.

He even went down for a nap, although not without a fuss, at more or less the planned nap time.

So then I spoke to a nice guy who left me a message over lunch and who even suggested he would send me some text he produced for a pamphlet he designed.

This would be really helpful for me. I can take information from that and incorporate it into my article.

One thing I noticed is that although I had a nice list of questions prepared for the interview, I found that our rather casual conversation didn't flow in the direction I wanted it to.

I have to practice this skill some more.

But all in all, I'm happy with my accomplishment today. I set out to do something, did it, and am now able to contribute to my article some valuable quotes.

I'm excited.