Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Sometimes I Amaze Even Me!!

So, Martha Stewart I am not. Nor have I ever, ever claimed to be. Cooking, at the very least causes me copious amounts of frustration, and at the very worst has sent me to the hospital. I am an expert at putting out stove fires (not to toot my own horn, but can you do that Martha? Can you put out a stove fire without batting an eye or breaking a nail? I didn't think so...) Cleaning - well - I can do it, but mostly I just chose not to. And who here needs a wreath for every season and every holiday? Certainly not me.
However, if you want to talk about perfection...that is a different story. I am a bit of a perfectionist...a lazy perfectionist, if you will. That is, if I can't do it perfectly the first time round, then I simply don't do it. This has, over time, been the crux of many a hilarious story involving yours truly, a frustrating task that absolutely cannot be accomplished perfectly the first time around, and a "lesson" in humility and my own humanity (shocker *I am not perfect* - I struggle with this reality everyday.)
So, in August when Q mentioned that he wanted to be a shark for Halloween I thought, "No big deal...E-bay is my best friend. E-bay has everything. E-bay will have my shark costume." After a few weeks of watching E-bay, and etsy and googling 'shark costume' with no luck I thought, "No big deal...I'll talk Q into being something else for Halloween..." Right. No such luck. Ok. I thought, "No big deal, I'll make him one. How hard could it be?" I mean, I took Home Economics in junior high. I made a cute little purple reversible apron. Shark costume? No problem. Back to google for 'shark patterns' and it quickly became evident that my child is the ONLY child on the face of the earth who has ever wanted to be a shark for Halloween. Great....
So, I thought, "No big deal. I'll make the pattern." Super easy, right? I mean, I could picture it in my head, all I had to do was put it on paper. My goodness, it was going to be a walk in the park!
A month went by, and then six weeks. And I still had this perfect picture in my head of what the shark was going to look like. I had thought about it for so long that it would practically make itself by the time I actually got around to making it. You understand that I was not going to stick a cone on his back, paint some fangy shark-like teeth on his face and call it a day. This was going to be a head to toe costume. It would be effortless. It would be perfect.
I bought some pattern paper (I still have no idea what it's actually called, but that's what I call it.) I bought some pins. I even bought a measuring tape. I took all Q's measurements, added an inch to each side for the seam. Then, came the task to find the perfect material for my shark. Pleather, my friends, is my new best friend. Seriously, I can see why so many designers work with it (uh, does Zellers count as a 'designer'? Probably not...) These supplies sat in the house for another week or so until I realised it was 3 weeks until Halloween. It was no longer August. It was October. Okay, so I'm a lazy, procrastinating perfectionist.
Dudes, here's the costume. It's done. Martha, who's da bomb now, huh? Oh yes, that's right...I am. I'm kind of freaking, though...'cuz man, I've set the bar high for future costumes...

the pattern

the end result...

(p.s. don't mind Q's 'art supplies' in the background...)

Thursday, October 22, 2009

A Mailbox is for Mail

At the Post Office, you see all sorts of things. Most I can't tell you for "security" reasons. Believe me, you can count yourself lucky, because when I say "security" reasons, I mean bore you to death reasons...seriously. On a good day, my life is like 'Groundhog Day' know, the movie with Bill Murray where he relives the same day over and over and over...ya, kinda like that. The mail comes in, the mail goes out. And just when you think you've seen the absolute last piece of mail, yet another one shows up. I can tell you that one country, for "security" reasons (let it be known that here on in, whenever I say "security", it will come in quotation marks, because that is what I'm doing with my fingers when I say "security"...) sews their bags shut. Now every country does seal their mail bags for obvious "security" reasons, but sewing it shut, doesn't that seem a little like overkill. Who, I'd like to know, is the sorry bastard who has that job? And is it by hand? Because if it is, then there really is a job worse than mine!
And I can probably tell you that the strangest thing I've ever seen mailed is this:
    • Clothes
    • Toys
    • Small Child

Now, we're pretty sure that what they meant was there were clothes and toys for a small child in the box. I say 'pretty sure' because we didn't actually check...and secretly, I think we're all waiting for a news story out of India about a small child that was mailed by Canada Post. And there would be a quote from the shipper that said, "Well, I wasn't trying to hide anything...I declared it..." I say we're all still waiting because it was sent surface, which is postal jargon for 'by boat' which is a good 6 to 8 weeks, if we're lucky.... Another person didn't have a stamp, so she taped .54 cents to the envelope... You'd be surprised how many people drop their rent money, or their Visa payment or their pay check in the mail in a completely nondescript blank, unsealed envelope. Of course, it's usually a wad of crisp 100 dollar bills - $3000.00, once. But I think you'd all be more surprised at how many people get said envelope back with all the cash inside (us posties might be a lot of things, but we believe in honest pay for an honest day.) Wallets, and cell phones, and hotel keys (oh my!) You'd also be surprised (and by surprised, I mean disgusted) by what people put inside mailboxes. Dirty diapers, used tampons, feces (maybe dog, maybe human...I'm not about to do any 'tests'), used syringes, broken glass, a loaded gun (street letter boxes come in handy when you're running from the law...) These are just a few of the things we've seen. Nothing is more exciting than opening a bag of mail after a long weekend, let me tell ya. But I've also seen a couple of interesting companies that I thought I'd share. If you're crazy about buying online, you might want to check these places out... - super trendy, cheap clothes...need I say more? - honestly, I'd buy just because of the absolutely creative name, but discounted brand name shoes...well, twist my rubber arm... - now, I'm not one to ride a bike, something about the seat being less than a third the size of my arse, but I'm a sucker for a box with cool writing, so I googled...

And of course, my favourite, all your addiction needs rolled into one!

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Ode to Berta

I've found a task more daunting than looking for a hubby. I know, I're thinking, "What could possibly compare to that?" Well, my dear friends, let me tell you - I am in the midst of looking for child care for Q.
Let me tell you about Berta. Berta is soft spoken. She never gets cross. She loves my son as if he were her grandson (she has no children or grandchildren of her own.) She has been Q's partner in crime since he was born. She was/is literally on call 24/7 (quite conveniently, she lives two doors down!) She would arrive at 5:00 in the morning (!) while Q was still fast asleep with her little bag of surprises, and settle down with a book until he woke. I had total piece of mind while I was at work. And she's sooooooo much better than Mary Poppins because before she retired, she was a nurse in the Pediatric ICU. Not only did she love my son, but she also knew exactly what to do in the event he was choking, bleeding, unconscious, etc, etc. (total peace of mind for a hypochondriac worrier such as myself...) Berta has come to every birthday, every Christmas concert, every graduation (okay, so it was preschool and there was only one....but she was there. That's the point. And more to the point, she'll likely be there when he graduates high school and medical school too!) She shared with my son her love of gardening, dancing to the 'oldies' and baking.
But Berta is getting older. While she loves my son, taking care of an active 5 year old 5 days a week is just a little too much. Hence the search for a new 'Berta'. Geez, she's set the bar high.
Nothing like interviewing someone to love your child. Here's the clincher...I want you to love him, but not too much. You can't replace me. I want you to be firm and enforce things like manners and good behaviour, but I don't want you to be mean. I'll need you to pick him up from school, so you need to drive safely. Because I work shift work, I need you to tuck him in to bed, and read him stories, and make him a bed time snack. I need you to do all the things that I should be doing. All the things that I imagined I would be doing when I dreamed of having children. All the things I ache to do every day. But you cannot, I repeat CANNOT replace me...
I need them to start on Monday.... Damn, I wish I wasn't such a procrastinator.... I think I'm feeling a little ill..... Obviously, someone didn't win the $20 millions dollars.....

Tuesday, October 13, 2009


This past weekend was Thanksgiving here in Canada. I'm not quite sure why it's earlier than in the States...maybe we were so much more thankful that we decided to celebrate first. Or maybe we were really discovered first, so we got dibs on the celebration. Maybe when the holidays were being planned, Canada stepped out to use the ladies room when they were discussing Thanksgiving. Then, when we got back from powdering our nose everyone thought it would be funny to tell us that Thanksgiving was the second weekend in October. And because we're just so darn friendly and trusting, we believed. I'm glad we didn't step out of the room during the whole New Years debate like China did...
So, I guess it's officially fall. The leaves are changing into a gorgeous symphony of colour. I'm getting the itch to bake peanut butter cookies and pumpkin muffins with Q. Mmmmm and drinking Hot Chocolate. I'm putting away the flip flops and bringing out the wool sweaters and turtlenecks. I love this time of year. I wanna go crunch some leaves. And rake them into huge piles and then jump in them.
Sometimes when things aren't going exactly the way we want, it's difficult to be thankful. It's easy to forget how fortunate we are for the little things. I have wonderful friends who ground me, who remind me what is really important and what doesn't even matter. I have a family that loves me and accepts me for who I am. I have a beautiful, healthy little boy who is more wonderful than I could have ever imagined. I can appreciate a beautiful autumn. I am truly blessed.
This Thanksgiving I was reminded by my best friend of the things that really matter. She reminded me that if I'm not happy, I have the ability to change it. Big changes are coming...

Friday, October 9, 2009

I Have a Dream

It's been a particularly grueling week. Sweeping procedural changes with little-to-no communication nor foresight at work. Contractors popping in and out (FYI: It takes one person to screw in the light, a different person to put the baseboards on, yet another to install the underlay, and so on and so forth. I haven't seen the carpet guy yet...) AND get this...they cashed my rent cheque. Oh.yes.they.did. I am livid (and I'm so ridiculously passive...I know I won't ask for compensation for my 'inconvenience') I haven't seen Q since Tuesday and I miss him like a piece of me is missing. I alternate between guilt for not seeing him enough, sadness for missing him so darn much, and anger that I have to work full time instead of being with him. Throw PMS into the mix and I am a sobbing, hormonal mess.
So, what did I do to escape the madness? What does anyone do...I bought a lottery ticket. For 20 million dollars. Let me say that again...twenty million dollars. It has become the dream that I dream for approximately 8 hours a day. Suddenly, I'm not a disgruntled postal worker, I'm a millionaire...nay, a multi-millionaire. I have a 'financial advisor' and a 'maid' and not only do I have a pool boy, I also have a pool for him to clean! (I'm just giddy with excitement!!) I have a house in White Rock on the Ocean, and a vacation property in Hawaii. I think I will have one in London too. Oh, and New York. No, Miami. No, New York. Oh, what the hey...New York and Miami, it is! But I wouldn't be living in a basement suite, that's for darn-tootin' sure.
When I am not travelling or being massaged or manicured or supervising my pool boy (again, giddy!!) I am sitting on the boards of many non-profit charities - Children and Postpartum depression are closest to my heart. I will throw fund raising galas and silent auctions and fashion shows, and maybe even open up a girls school in Rwanda. I'd adopt babies from China and Romania and South Korea! I will walk into little boutiques and say, "Oh, hello! I'm a multi-millionaire, and I'm throwing a little soiree for my millionaire friends. What should I wear?" I can't even imagine showing up at my mom's door with a realtor and saying, "Hi Mom, this is Debbie. Debbie is a realtor. Let's go buy you a house today!!"
I'd spend my days with Q. We'd go to the beach and the aquarium and Science World and we'd ride bikes and just hang out!! I'd have the chef bake him homemade cookies and pies and hot cocoa. I'd get to read him stories, tuck him in, and put him to bed every night. I'd drop him off at school and pick him up. He wouldn't cry when I dropped him off, because he'd know I'd be there waiting to pick him up. I wouldn't have to say good night on the phone every night. I wouldn't have to hear about his day, every day, on the phone. My heart wouldn't ache every time he says he misses me. We'd travel and I'd show him the world. It would just be heaven. It would be bliss. It would be fabulous.
I think I paid $2 for the ticket. And I know I won't win twenty million dollars, I mean I never win anything. Ever. I think I won a teddy bear in elementary school, only I didn't actually win it. My teacher gave it to me because she felt so horrible that I didn't win anything. But $2 is a very small price to pay for an amazing day dream, an escape. And you know, I could go without the properties in New York and Miami. I could even go without the pool boy. Time with my boy, that's all I really, really want.

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Lights, Camera, Action

Well, I can now add Kim and Aaron to the list of those who have seen me before the crack of dawn. Kim and Aaron are my drywallers/painters, and wow, they're super dedicated to the job. I mean these guys show up at 8:00am. Consistently. And, for the sake of this blog, it would have been way more exciting if they were women (come on, Kim? Aaron?) because then we could have at least had coffee, bonding over jilted man stories while the first layer of drywall dried. But nope, as luck would have it, Kim is like 75 (well maybe not, but my point is he's old...) and Aaron is maybe 19. Kim lets me in on all the little tricks of the trade. All day long. Just in case I decide to start dry walling in my free time. Now, in the event that I do, I will know how to manage my time so that by the time I've finished the fourth wall, the first will be dry, so I can paint the second coat. Yay!
Of course, it couldn't just happen that my Mr. Perfect would show up at my doorstep and I would have to do nothing but bat my eye lashes to attract him (and brush my teeth...) Kim and Aaron are done tomorrow, after which the carpet experts will install the underlay and baseboards. Then, hopefully, my sleeping pattern will return to normal, by which I mean I will still be sleeping soundly when 8 am rolls around...
The POF (Plenty of Fish - a free Internet dating site) surprised me yesterday. A message from Mr. Shutter (he's into camera's...) who grew up in South Africa, then lived in London for 15 years before moving to B.C. You know what that means, right? He has an accent!! Accents are super sexy. He said he read my profile and thought, "Wow, this is a person I'd like to get to know better." That's nice, isn't it? He's a director with his own movie company, and has a couple of commercials and independent films under his belt. He worked on some movie that was in the theaters, too...but I can't remember what it was. Truthfully, he has more in common with my brother than with me. Snowboarding and world travelling, to name a couple. But I figure that if all else fails, my bro might get a gig or two out of it.

Monday, October 5, 2009

Ghosts of Boyfriends Past

I'm pretty sure I've referenced this before. The past two months have been filled with continuous reminders of boyfriends past. (Which, might I point out is so unfair, Scrooge only had to deal with ONE night...) But if they're not visiting me in my dreams, they're calling me or texting me, and my resolve is growing thin. Thing is, my dreams, for the most part, are filled with the boyfriends I'm still attracted to. They aren't the boyfriends that I went running for the hills from. They're the ones who I had 'unfinished' business with. And the boys that are calling me, ya.....same thing....
One in particular. I mean, this guy is amazing. He makes my heart go pitter patter. We agree on most things and what we don't agree on, we're content to disagree. He 'gets' my sense of humour, he 'gets' my faith. He makes me laugh, he makes me feel safe. He's supportive, he's respectful. We've been friends (and nothing more) for nearly three years. So, what's the big deal. right? What's holding me back? Take the plunge and don't look back. Except for one little thing...he's married. I think i just heard a collective 'Ohhhhh....'
Of course, I know deep down that this isn't really a dilemma at all. There are no options here. He is Mr. Married, and so I must just move on. It's soooooo hard, though. I know that I am being tested. This, Mr. Married texting me all day long "Good Morning, Sunshine." (ugh, I'm Sunshine. How perfect is that?) And he's surprisingly intense after almost six months of silence. Nothing. And then, boom....
He's the lure. He's the (hopefully final) test. Get past this, and hopefully it will be made clear that my ways have changed and I am not looking for random trysts and sordid love affairs. I am looking for a concrete, pure relationship. It seems as though I am soooooo close, and yet so very, very far away. Whom ever said good was easy.....

Saturday, October 3, 2009

Get this....I have followers!! Besides my mother and my best friend!!! I remember the first time someone who I didn't know followed my blog. I was ecstatic. I wanted to throw a party, with cute little invitations that said, WELCOME ANONYMOUS!!! Instead, I called my mom.
Blogging really is a surreal experience. My journal is online! I remember once I let my boyfriend at the time read my journal. That turned out to be a huge mistake because I had mentioned how I was crushing on this guy named Darius who played a keyboard. Oh he was so super cool. My boyfriend didn't think that was very cool...
And then, tonight, I realized something I hadn't before. People comment on my posts. They comment! I have comments! Oh, I felt like Sally Fields when she was accepting the Oscar for Places In The Heart, "I can't deny the fact that you like me, right now - you like me!" (not the one where she went on the anti-war tirade, that would just be weird...) They have words of encouragement (as does my mother, which is a constant bone of contention with her, that I don't listen. But, come on...mother's are a little biased. It's their job, they can't help it. I'll admit that Q will show me a drawing of himself with his arms coming out of his head, and his body completely not proportionate, but I don't ever point it out, I just say, "Oh honey, I love it!!" because that is my job.) There is something about a complete stranger validating your words, agreeing with you, cheering you on that is just exhilarating!
It can be a little disconcerting when you look at other blogs and they have hundreds of followers. Of course, they must have an unusually large extended family. Or maybe they've made up other identities. But they say things like, "Hello Lovelies" and "How are my Loves today?" and well, that's just not me. It's not that I don't care about you, my followers (!!) it just sounds a little phony. Silly me, I forgot phony sells...
But thank you all for following my blog, for reading my thoughts, for commenting on my stories. It really means the world to me. It absolutely makes my day to make your day...even just a little bit. Tell your friends! At dinner, tell your unusually large extended family! Tell your dentist, "Mpfh thwuspd dkdusile single dating mommy..." Tell your boss (dude, I told mine!!) Tell the guy who flips you off in traffic, "Oh ya, well you, mister, need to read single dating mommy dot blogspot dot com (all one word)!" Maybe one day I WILL write a book, and I will dedicate it to you (really, I promise...) unless I have a boyfriend (or God willing, a husband!!) because then it would probably be more appropriate to dedicate it to him...but maybe not. I don't know yet, geez, get off my back...I haven't even figured out the plot yet, or the characters (*cold sweat*) Truthfully, it will most likely be dedicated to my mom, who always, always believes, even when I don't.

Friday, October 2, 2009

At Least I'm Real

You have no idea how long it took me to figure out how to do this... Awesome message. Don't think it would make me use Dove products over any other, but it sure makes you realize that what we take at face value isn't always what it seems. I'm sure that if I had a team of 20 and a photo shop expert, I too, would be beautiful. Pass on the message. You could be beautiful too! (haha, I mean...uh...don't believe everything you see....)