Product X

ohwowOh my God! This is the best thing ever! Orgasmic! Better than sex, food, friendship, love. Why, it makes my whites whiter! It makes my sink sparkle! It gives me an excuse to drop money on spreading something on dishes before I wash them with more products! Oh woweee I want to clean all my friends’ homes, and dance and sing. My life had no meaning until Product X! This justifies how no one else in my household will help at all! Whoa ho ho!!! Product X, you define me!

I effing hate cleaning product commercials.

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Ultrasound craft ideas

A peek at some ultrasound art.

Trying to put the scraps from baby gift packaging to good use I made a collage for my baby’s ultrasound pictures (Her foot prints were later added too.)

I cut a piece of cardboard from one of the boxes and wrapped it with wrapping paper scraps. I then decorated it with images from gift bags before pasting the ultrasound pictures on. The piece hangs on P’s bedroom wall, a gift box lid is glued to the collage’s back for easy mounting.

Seeing as it has been over four years, I really should get around to covering them with something like a sticky laminate page. Laminating your ultrasound pictures will make them turn black because of the paper they are printed on, photocopies can be laminated though 🙂

Lil  Sugar has some ideas. I like the silhouette wall art from Simply Silhouettes the best, and the cupcake toppers are cute.

Image from Simply Silhouettes

What have you parents out there done with your ultrasound pictures? Please share 🙂

Thank you to Babywaves 4D of Columbus, GA for sharing my craft idea!

I write other stuff too! Check out HillaryDiMenna.com

Take notes!

how_rudeI understand this is a little late, admittedly I am not very up to date pop culture wise.

When Sean “Diddy” Combs’s son, Justin, heard of Beyonce’s pregnancy he tweeted, “Beyonce dated, married, THEN got pregnant… young ladies take notes”

Did Justin take notes when learning about the birds and the bees? It takes both a lady and gent. And did his dad get that memo, because Sean has fathered five kids, by different women, and hasn’t married.

I personally don’t care if someone is married before, after or ever when they have children, or how many different parent partners they have. If this guy does he could’ve thought a wee bit before sending his golden rules out to the world wide web.

He can certainly have an opinion but when he sends it out there, given his celebrity status, it becomes more than that. I assumed – wrongly I’m sure- celeb families were given media training.

What he made public was not only hypocritical (Unless the statement only applies to women as it is addressed to “young ladies”, but what does that say about his feelings towards his own mother? Or was she an older mother thus exempt?

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Table Fellowship

I may not follow many social norms, like showering regularly, wearing shoes or politely chuckling as opposed to cackling loudly. However, I like eating together as a family.

There’s research (Time Healthland, Eatingtogether.ca, Science Daily) finding the health benefits of eating together: decreased obesity, improved social skills, easy on the wallet. The Eating Together campaign site says, “Research has repeatedly shown that families who regularly share meals bond and connect more effectively, have fewer problems, and stay together.”

Post family dins.

Food is awesome on it’s own. The way it feels in your mouth, how it goes down, tickles your tongue, the way it gets in your body and just makes you feel good. If this description of eating is making you think of another awesome activity, it should, eating rocks. Add good company and candid conversation and the whole experience becomes much more than a meal. Jonathan Safron Foer wrote in his book Eating Animals, “Sharing food generates good feeling and creates social bonds.”

My nonna was all about family. She showed her love through food. From the time spent cooking it, extra time spent because of vegetarian family members (guilty), and the amount she’d feed you just to keep you at the table. When my aunt delivered a eulogy at Nonna’s funeral it sounded like a menu. I love this.

Having her first bites of Nonna’s pizza.

It is hard to find time to sit and have a meal. My lil one and I are often adventuring, but I like to include her in the food packing experience. We talk about which foods we like, which are healthy, what favourites we share and where our tastes differ. It’s a simple yet intimate activity. It’s interesting to know she thinks yogurt or almonds are jut as much of a treat as Tim Bits or a Mad Cafe cupcake.

A dinner at a friend’s house nearing ten years ago left me inspired. They’d go around the table and discuss the good parts of their day and the bad parts. It was so cute and therapeutical to me. Patience and I do this before bed now. It’s nice to have dinner in your safety net and let it all go. Like in my old yoga classes (looks like I won’t be seeing those again for a while, unless affordable babysitting is included.) where they would say, don’t worry about tomorrow, and let the past stay in the past; start new. Why not start new with your day’s final meal? It all ends at the table.

My favourite local restaurant is a great example of yummy, healthy food in a communal setting, The Table. Don’t live in Oshawa and have your own favourite spot? Let me know 🙂

I got the title Table Fellowship from Foer’s afformentioned book. He used it when taking a look at Michael Pollan‘s use of the term.

This post was inspired by Bloggy Mom’s Writer’s Workshop where we used a random sentence generator to start or end our post. I got, “It ends at the table!”

I write other stuff too! Check out HillaryDiMenna.com

If you ever thought I was cool, this will fix that

This is a remarkably stupid “fiction” piece, though based on a true story.

This week’s Bloggy Mom’s Writer’s Workshop said to write what you don’t know. I have no clue how to write a fictional tale, even this is based on a lady that pissed me off at P’s dance recital. Next time maybe I’ll be more serious and be less self-indugant with my really bad sense of humour.

This smile is why it’s OK

With her beau on her arm and spawn at her feet, Nerd Girl entered the building. What she was met with was pure chaos, generated by millions of human bodies. Pushy moms, bedazzled dancing stars-to-be, Nerd Girl’s anxiety was on the rise but she kept her cool. Her brood was the only cool assembly there after all. Seeing a familiar face in her daughter’s dance instructor she asked, “Where can we find solace before she performs?” The instructor instructed, as she does frequently given her position, to go to the gym. Nerd Girl led her family to safety.

But for how long?

Huddled together the awesome couple kept to themselves, others would simply sniff them and move on.

A  woman made a beeline for the couple. Without moving any other part of her body her mouth let out an angry, “This is a change room!” Then her lips did a remarkable thing, they retracted inward, making a straight line like the mouth of a Muppet. Ah yes, it was the evil Muppet Head. Similar to a Negamonster. Before anyone else could respond to apologize for not knowing the gymnasium being used as a waiting room doubled as a change room – as no one was even changing – she hurried out of the room. Our beautiful monster of a heroine tried to call out to her, to let her know manners make the world a happier place, but her angelic voice fell on deaf ears. Something snapped in Nerd Girl’s brain, and she followed the evil Muppet. Her calls of, “Excuse me,” were ignored. So she jogged up to the beast again explaining they did not know. In fact, an actual employee of the business told them to go there. Muppet Head rotated her head to the side and smiled a condescending Muppet smile, “Mhmmm.” How was a smile being used against our fearless heroine? Smiles were meant to be a good thing!

Nerd Girl went back to her lover and told him to wait outside, she was going to face the beast alone. She bravely sat near the gym door; eyes wide and wise like those of an owl. She spotted her prey with a friend, also not an employee but at least a helpful parent, who was making a sign to designate the gym as a change room. This seemed much more logical to Nerd Girl. It was not that she wanted to linger in a change room, nor did her other half; they were doing what they were told. Nerd Girl approached and again apologized, she tried her best to do so rudely. The reasonable woman said it was OK, that it happens every year. Why was this not better organized? Who knows, Nerd Girl is merely the younger mom with tattoos.

Nerd Girl looked Muppet dead in the eye, “The way you spoke to us, so rude and short, you embarrassed us.” Muppet started a lame apology but that wasn’t enough for our now crazed heroine who was babbling. “You humiliated my husband.” This magic word, though a lie, calmed the beast. More apologies, as the reference to a faux husband, tumbled out.

Nerd Girl now fit in. It was not the equal amount of money she dished out as this other woman, or the commitment of having her daughter attend each practice and recital. It was that she was “married.”

Nerd Girl was ashamed that she resorted to a lie but her fury had to stop at some point. She was becoming unreasonably mad and was going to punch that Muppet face so hard that Muppet would become a bobble head.

Nerd Girl is openly not very emotionally stable. But was this incident especially psychologically menacing because Muppet was so rude? Or was it because the picture, out of many taken, that was used in the program excluded her daughter? Or was it the flashback to when she signed her daughter up and she had to tag along with another family for a tour because no one seemed to notice her as the mother of  a child?

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Nice things! (We can have them) Blankets, crafts and my new baby

Some neat lil things.

So I wanted to get something special for my newest buddy-to-be who may be born by the time you are reading this 🙂 The blanket and patch were purchased from two lovely shops on Etsy.

To Raelyn Love, Patience, Hillary and Baby Bear (Uncle BB)

I love this blanket! The best part is probably the stitching I did to sew the patch on (Sorry guys if the stitching comes out )

I wish I folded the corner up before giving it to Mama and Papa to show off the comfy, green inside. The shoe print is coolio and I kinda wanted to keep it for myself but guilt would consume me with every snuggle. Check out RockerByeBaby for lots of cute stuff – like their skull owl rattles.

Pic from RockerByeBaby

The patch is from zJayne, an eco-friendly shop that uses 100% recycled products. The patch was made from recycled t-shirts. I’m going to get a patch for my lil girl’s blanket, they’re too neat not to.

Next up is … one of our more successful crafts. Oshawa’s Robert McLaughlin Gallery is asking people to personalize postcards with their Summer favourite creative project. We do a lot of collages at our house, they are my long time vice. They’re easy and don’t require as much skill as I like to think, regarding my own. I’m sure there are top notch collage artists out there. Collages can be time  consuming if you need  a break from the kiddo. Messes can easily happen but a few moments peace can be worth it,what’s an extra glue stain in the grand scheme of things?

You can see by my rolled flowers I take this stuff seriously, no big deal. My favourite creative project, this summer, has been gardening with my cat. P’s has been “I like love.”

And now … I present to you … BABY BEAR aka BB the Cat aka the love of my life.

You are in awe aren’t you? I know. Did you know I was this cat crazy? I thought I did but this love is pretty intense even for me. I’m glad you’ve met him and that I got this out of my system. He was adopted through Animal Rescue Krew, ARK

xoxo

I write other things too! Check out HillaryDiMenna.com

Bitchfest – Ten Years of Cultural Criticism from the Pages of Bitch Magazine

Bitchfest Ten Years of Cultural Criticism from the Pages of Bitch Magazine edited by Lisa Jervis and Andi Zeisler

Picture from Amazon.ca

I bought Bitchfest from a lovely political bookshop on Commercial Drive in Vancouver whose name escapes me at this moment of course. I re-read it recently and found a collection of parenting essays. I love learning from a new perspective as much as I love going, “Ya! I know! Thank Bowie someone else does too!” I others do too – you’re reading my ramblings, right? So pick up a copy and give this collection of articles a read. If you want to skip to the aforementioned essays go to Chapter 5 Domestic Arrangements

The Paradox of Martha Stewart by Jennifer Newens

Double Life: Everyone Wants to See Your Breasts – Until Your Baby Needs Them by Lisa Moricoli Latham

Queer and Pleasant Danger: What’s Up with the Mainstreaming of Gay Parents? By Margaret Price

Mother Inferior: How Hollywood Keeps Single Moms in Their Place by Monica Nolan

Hoovers and Shakers: The New Housework Workout by Sarah McCormic

Interested in Bitch Magazine? Click here!

For my local readers neither the Oshawa or Whitby libraries carry this book.

I write other stuff too! Check out HillaryDiMenna.com