Rebecca Eckler is one of Canada's most talked about newspaper columnists, the author of Knocked Up: Confessions of a Hip Mother to Be, which has been translated into nine languages. Also the author of the bestsellers, Wiped!, Toddlers Gone Wild, and Rotten Apple, the first in a YA series. Random thoughts on life in the competitive world of modern mommyhood. Blog will be loved by trendy mothers who still feel, or often feel, that the most important word in "mommee" is ME!

Sunday, April 30, 2006

The Strangest Post Card

Ok, The Fiance and I NEVER check our home voice. Well, I wouldn't say never. But let's just say there have been many a times we've had to say to people, "Um, I know your party was 17 days ago. Sorry we didn't make it. We never check our voice mail."

We check our home voice mail about once every two weeks. Everyone knows that no one calls people at home anymore. In fact, when my home phone rings, I actually am shocked, like, "What is that sound? Who the hell could be calling me at home? I don't even know my home phone number! What? Who? Ga!"

We also check our mailbox about once every ten days. This is because everyone knows that you don't send mail in the mail anymore. You e-mail people. Or you call them on your cell. Or you text message them. Unless your sending a wedding invite, or a Thank You card.

When The Fiance brought in the mail last night, for the first time in about three weeks, I was super excited, almost as exicted as I get for Mother's Day (Hi fiance! If you're reading this, which I doubt, but if you are, 'Hi!' and don't forget about the most important day of the year, Mother's Day!)

Anyway, bills and other crap were in the mail. But so was a Post Card! For me! The last time I remember getting a post card was when I was in summer camp. This is what the post card I got in the mail yesterday said:

"Hi Rebecca, it's Julia writing from Aritzia! Thanks for shopping with us. I hope you're enjoying your French Terry Sweat pants! Good choice, they are very comfortable. Remember to wash in cold and lay flat to dry so you avoid shrinking them! Stop by soon, we have some great stuff in! Julia."

Ok, first, who the heck is Julia? Second, I actually don't remember going to Artizia. I certainly don't remember buying French Terry Sweat pants! What exactly are French Terry Sweat Pants?

And, truthfully, it kind of creeps me out that some saleslady, named Julia, actually remembers what I bought. But even more weird is the fact she's giving me laundry advice - on a post card.

Not to say that I didn't shop at Aritzia and buy French terry Sweat pants. I mean, I probably did. And, I guess, it was nice of Julia to take the time and write me a post card. Actually, I think it's really very nice.

It kind of makes me want to go back to Aritzia and find this Julia and say, "Thank you for the post card. It was very thoughtful of you."

And it kind of makes me wonder where the heck my French Terry Cloth sweat pants are. Because even though I probably did buy a pair, I certainly don't remember wearing them.

Thursday, April 27, 2006

Oy! My Mommy Legs

Ok, it's kind of a two-post kind of day. This is what happens when you have a very long day. I'm like, did I or did I not blog today? Was that yesterday, or was that only a few hours ago? Anyway. Here I am.

My legs! My legs! I have Mommy Legs. Oy.

It's really someone else's fault that I noticed my legs in the first place. Generally, I'm too busy gazing at my navel to notice my legs. That's a joke. Hardy-har-har.

One of my friends is having a book launch next week because she has written a book and it's going to be published (I'll write more about this book later, because it is really, really good and deserves its own post and for people to go on Amazon and buy it.)

Anyhoo, we were talking about my friend's launch, which I will be attending, and I said something like, "Oh, I just want to look good at your launch," or, "What should I wear?" or, "I've gained too much weight this winter to wear anything sexy," or something very-girly like which you can only say to your closest friends.

Her answer was, "I think you should wear a mini skirt with heels." I don't know why, but as soon as she said "mini skirt" I looked down at my legs and, no joke, I had to turn away. (It's also weird that she suggested I wear a mini-skirt, considering I've known her for 8 years and never once have worn a mini-skirt in front of her.)

I'm not talking about veins here, although I do have one or two or three or four of those (just another wonderful aftermath of pregnancy.) There are, no joke, 15 bruises and/or scratches on my legs. A six year-old girl, at a bug infested summer camp, learning to roller skate, has nicer legs than I do at this moment.

My legs are definitely Mommy Legs. Four days ago, at Neiman Marcus (Neiman Mark-up) The Dictator thought it would be super fun to push the stroller into my legs. She did this about 18 times. No, it wasn't cool, but every time she drove that stroller into my legs, I'd pretend that I was majorly hurt and that would make her giggle. It didn't really hurt at all.

And I kind of love to hear The Dictator giggle. In fact, I'd do almost anything to hear her laugh, including letting her ram a stroller into my legs. Which is why my legs now look like a joke (What's black and blue all over?)

Also, I still haven't recovered from the two slips of January 2006. I think I may be permantly bruised. Is that possible?

The first fall was at the children's pool at The Four Seasons in Maui, where I slipped on the stone pavement around the pool. I meant to tell the management about it, but I forgot. The bruise was so big and so disgusting on my upper thigh, people would come up to me and say, "Ooooooh. What happened?"

The second fall of January 2006 was the night we arrived home from Maui and I slipped, holding The Dictator, on the ice on our driveway. In order to protect The Dictator, I managed to fall on my left leg and she landed on top of me. I still sometimes limp from that fall.

And then there are the million times a day I'm running to rescue The Dictator from almost-falls, and almost-spills, when all I do is end up hurting myself, banging my legs on tables and coffee tables and stupid baby gates. Has anyone else tripped on Jumbo size Lego, or is it just me?

In fact, I really think I need to be child-proofed. I basically need a child-proof gate around my body to make sure I don't injure myself.

I won't be wearing a mini-skirt in the next few weeks, if ever again. No, I definitely have pants-only legs now, thanks to The Dictator. Oy.

Parenting Bloggers who kind of suck

Bonnie Fuller, she of Glamour, US Weekly, and Cosmo fame, has just released a book called The Joys of Much Too Much.

I will buy this book, stay up all night reading it, and pass it on to friends who are also Fuller fans. (Come on! Who doesn't think US Weekly is, like, the best publication in the entire world?)

If I had Fuller's private e-mail, I'd send her a nice note asking her to be my friend. "Bonnie," I'd write, "Will you be my friend?"

Anyway, I read a blog entry, by parenting "expert" Andrea Gordon, who writes for the largest newpspaer in Canada, The Toronto Star. Ok, I'll let Andrea Gordon have the title "expert" because she is a mother, and all mothers become "experts" after they have children, right? Whatever.

I read her blog because, well, I feel I have to, being a mommy blogger myself. I do not know Andrea Gordon at all. She may be the nicest person on the planet, for all I know. I just feel I need to say something when she critises Bonnie Fueller for being out of touch. No one is allowed to critisize my Bonnie!

I think Andrea Gordon is the one out of touch with the real world.

Maybe it's not all Andrea's fault. She's overly-earnest, which annoys me. It's the same reason I don't read the Toronto Star. It annoys me, without even trying. But I will read Andrea's blog, and Antonia whatever-her-last-name's blog.

Anyway, Andrea came down hard on poor Bonnie Fuller, in the typical Canadian way. I hate when Canadians do this.

One of the reasons I hate Canada is because of people like Andrea Gordon. Can't you just be happy that a Canadian has done well in America? N-o-o-o.

God forbid we ever congratulate or support a Canadian who has done well. Can't you just say "Congrats on your book. I may not agree with it, but you got a book out and that's coolio daddy-o?"

Can't you just be like, "I admire how much you've accomplished?" Oh, n-o-o. Us Canadians don't like anyone who succeeds.

But I'm getting off topic. Andera Gordon didn't like The Joys of Much Too Much because she can't understand a woman who, essentially, is very ambitious, super busy, career-oriented, and a mother. Andrea Gordon can't understand why any woman doesn't want to slow down and smell the roses and scratch their cat.

She says that Bonnie Fueller is not an "inspiration." I find Fuller completey inspirational.

I completely understand Bonnie Fuller. I can completely understand how she works so hard, and wants to work so hard, and also be a mother. Hello? Is there really something wrong with her because she lets her husband stay at home and loves her career? Is this not the year 2006?

"Go Bonnie, go!" is what I say. Why slow down? I think I probably think a lot like Bonnie. You only live life once. Why not try to do all you can? Why not try and be the best in your field? Why do anything half-hearted and half-assed? There's plenty of time to rest in your grave, as the saying goes.

"The full life I'm aiming for isn't about never stopping. It's about stopping a lot more and feeling okay with that. It's about sitting still and digesting and reflecting and finding the meaning in the ordinary," writes Andrea Gordon.


Who the hell wants to find meaning in the ordinary? Who the hell wants to sit and reflect? The only time I want to digest is after I eat a Big Mac and fries at Mcdonalds.

I'm the type that takes on way too much. If I could tell you - hey, it's my blog! I can! Well, let's just say I'm working on a handful of books coming out next year, freelance at least a couple feature articles a month, write a weekly column for the Globe and Mail, work-out, see friends, do this blog, watch a lot of tv, and also am a mother.

And, you know what? I like being busy.

In fact, I think most people like being busy more than they like not being busy. Be honest. Do you feel more comfortable having things to do and people needing you, or do you feel better about yourself lying on the coach, watching America's Next Top Model, and cramming your face with SmartFood?

Not that there's anything wrong with that. You choose the life you want to lead. I would never come down hard on a woman who is ambitious, just like I'd never come down hard on someone who chooses to spend their day getting their nails and hair done.

I do come down hard on women who moan, like Andrea Gordon, about how she has too much to do and she doesn't like it. Poor you. You're s-o-o-o busy.

It's the same way I felt about people I used to work with, who moaned, "I hate it here. I hate my job." Dude, get another job, then. Or appreciate what you have and that a million other people would glady want your job. If you don't like your life, change it. But don't come down hard on someone who actually likes the way they live their life.

Maybe Andrea just had a bad day or something. In any case, don't come down hard on Bonnie. She is an inspiration. She has a kick-ass career, a large family, a husband.

Anyone have her e-maill?

Wednesday, April 26, 2006


I feel the need to bitch about my bitch. Ok, that was pathetic. I know.

Ruby is my eight-pound dog. She's a Cavalier King Charles Spaniel, which for those of you who don't know what type of dog that is, it's the same kind that Charlotte had on Sex and The City (I know you know that show.)

Anyway, The Fiance got Ruby from a breeder in another city. This is because he knows how much I love dogs, and was trying to make me feel more at home in his city, where I had moved, you know, to be with him.

The Fiance meant well. Also, I had started to talk about maybe having a second child, and that freaked him out. He was probably thinking, "I'll get her a dog! That will get her mind off a second child!" It kind of worked too. Toilet training a dog is really very hard.

The thing is, I always grew up with big dogs from the Human Society. There was Spot, my favorite dog, a mutt who died suddenly after having a diabetic seizure.

There was Blackjack, a mutt, who was possible the stupidest dog in existence, but had a nice personality. He died of cancer.

Then, there was Bogey, a part beagle and very stupid dog too, who, though weighed about 90 pounds, thougt he was a lap dog and always wanted to sit on you. He was given to a very nice man, who adored Bogey, when I moved to The Fiances city, where he lived in a no-dogs-allowed condo.

Now we have Ruby, the 8-pound dog, because we moved into a house.

The Fiance liked The King Charles Spaniel, because Sinatra had one. So he was sold. I wasn't sold, because I love big dogs who I can lie on. And I wanted to rescue a dog from the Human Society, because those poor dogs. I didn't really want a small, designer dog. Anyway.

The Fiance found a breeder, made arrangements. And, $1000 and a few weeks later, we picked Ruby up at the airport. She was tiny. If I lied on her, she'd die. But she was cute, as most dogs are.

But the breeder LIED to us. Seriously. Ruby, the 8-pound dog, was turning out to be a lemon. That's what we call her actually, "lemon."She was supposed to be entirely Ruby-colored, and she is not. She also really, really likes to lick. Which is nice, for the first minute, but after 38 minutes, not so nice. Oh, and she limps.

We took Ruby to a Pet Resort (seriously, that's what it is called - a Pet Resort) when we went on vacation. I actually called them, while we were vacationing in Hawaii a few months ago, to check in. The woman who answered the phone was in shock that a dog-owner called to check up on their dog.

But, I mean, Ruby was part of the family. When I leave The Dictator, I call about 12 times a day to check in.

But the woman was friendly enough and came back to the phone saying, "Ruby is doing very well, and she's been playing with puppies because she is so small."

Anyway, when we picked Ruby up, her coat of fur looked about 120 shades lighter than when we dropped her off. They did wash her, like we asked, but I am convinced, so is The Fiance, that the breeder had dyed Ruby a darker brown (the color she was supposed to be) before shipping her to us.

The Fiacne is sick of Ruby. He gets really upset when she poos in the house. I'm more like, "But her poos are so small!," which is true, and a positive about owning a small dog.

The Dictator, we think, likes Ruby. Or at least she likes taking all of Ruby's toys and throwing them in the basement. Basically, I think The Dictator likes torturing Ruby, because Ruby is the only one in the house smaller than her.

I've grown the love Ruby-the-lemon-8-pound dog-who-limps. Even though we paid for a pure-bred dog, and that's not what we got. And we've already spent a couple thousand dollars on her, because her baby teeth weren't falling out and there was talk about giving her a leg operation, which I've turned down, because she doesn't seem to be in pain. She just limps.

The Fiance regrets getting her. But Ruby kind of did the trick. She, too, is a full time job. I couldn't imagine having another child, plus The Dictator, plus the dog.

And though in the 10 page contract we signed, from the breeder, we are allowed to give her back if there were any medical probelms in the first year. But, really, she's been with us for a few months now. I could NEVER send Ruby back. It would be like sending The Dictator back to the hospital and saying, "Well, you know, she cries a lot and makes a mess everywhere, and sometimes she likes to hit and bite me and she still doesn't sleep through the night.. She's a lemon! Can I have another please?"

Could you imagine?

Tuesday, April 25, 2006

Check it out! What's up with Abdul?

Ok, this is nearly as important as anything mother-related. Yup, I'm talking about American Idol.

I am an Idol-head. Is that what we're called? I'm not sure. But I am sure that Paula Abdul is losing her mind or has got her hands on a doctors prescription pad and is taking stong pain killers.

Ok, I'll admit, I actually like Paula. Sure, her boobs are always so strangley positioned, and sometimes her hair...well, Iet's just say, she always looks kind of interesting in the way you look at a celebrity and ask, "You have a stylist? Really?"

And, sure, her sentences never make any sense. In fact, The Dictator can put together sentences that I understand more than I understand why Paula is saying. But, the boobs, the hair, and what came out of her mouth, is always so fascinating, I looked forward to seeing her.

Also, I loved that whole "Did she sleep with that contestant whose name I forget?" drama of last year. She's such a cougar! Growl!

But tonight she cried! Yes, she cried in front of millions and millions and millions of viewers, because Elliot Yasmin sang. I couldn't believe it.

In fact, I was so stunned I had no idea what to do but scream out to The Fiance who was making dinner, "You must come in right now and see this! Paula is crying! She's crying! She's crying. Oh my god, she's crying!"

Not that Elliot was bad. He was pretty good. But to make her cry? Yikes. He's good, but he's not that good, who are we kidding? As if the rest of the world didn't think Paula was already losing her mind. Anyway, I'm still in shock which is why I'm writing like Paula speaks - in nonsense.

But here is why I'm so addicted to American Idol, the good, the bad, the ugly.

1) Am I the only one who finds Randy so annoying to the point I'm screaming at the TV, "Shut up dude! Shut up!" I rarely ever agree with him, and if he says, "Dogpound," or, "Check it out," or "Dude," one more time...argh! It's so obvious he has an inferiority complex next to Paula and Simon. Check that, dude.

2) The only judge who I actually agree with 95 per cent of the time is Simon. I kind of have a crush on him.

3) I know some people, but I'm not naming names (Kristen), have a huge hate on for Kelly Pickler. No, she's not the best singer there, but like Jessica Simspon, I kind of like her personality. Most people do not appreciate blonde ditzes, but I do. They make me laugh and smile. And, yes, I bought all the Newlyweds DVD's. But that's another story. I love how Kelly keeps mentioning her "daddy in prison." My Daddy is in prison too. (I'm joking! But for a minute there, you actually felt for me, right?)

4) For some reason, all the contestant's butts look big when they take camera shots from behind. I don't get it. Why is that?

5) I'm voting for Kat McPhee. Yes, I have the McPhever. At first, the way she looked into the camera, like she really was thinking "I'm making love to the camera. I'm making love to the camera," while she sang, annoyed the crap out of me. But I love her voice. Also, Rachel Bilson, the actress who plays Summer on The O.C is voting for her (they went to school together.) If Summer likes her, how could I not?

6) I always wonder if I'm taller than Ryan Seacrest. I probably am. I think he's so good at his job. Really. I think keeping things moving is harder than most people think. When I get married, I'd like Ryan Seacrest to be the one who moves the speeches along.

7) I like Paris. I don't love her, but I like her. The Fiance likes her, so whenever we watch Idol together, I'm like, "Hey, your girls on now!" But she's never worn an outfit I like. Either she looks like she's trying to be a flight attendant, or someone heading to a Bingo Hall (not that there's anything wrong with Bingo. I like it) But who styles the girl? Really. Awful. Awful. Even if she got tips from Paula, that would be an improvement.

8) Ace was hot. But I'm glad he's gone. I'm actually surprised he lasted as long as he did. He's hot, but he's actually not a very good singer at all. I miss Bucky. Actually, I just like saying his name. Bucky, Bucky, Bucky.

Can you believe Paula cried? Yikes. (Oh, and I'm also voting for Kelly Pickler too.)

Monday, April 24, 2006

Anti-Children People - Hate 'em

Ok, I was debating naming names, but I'm going to name names.

I'm leaving Scottsdale Arizona tomorrow, to go back to the real world. Argh. Anyway, I went back to this cool, funky store in Scottsdale, called 42 Saint.

I shopped there last week, and bought about $800 (US) worth of cute clothes. I went back yesterday to see if there were any last-minute finds (Why is it when you're on vacation, you feel like it will be the last time you ever shop again? It's ridiculous.)

Anyway, The Dictator and I went to 42 Saint and I found this wicked pair of white jeans. A saleslady put them in the changeroom for me, while I continued to browse.

The Dictator, of course, was being her usual charming 2 year-old selve and touching everything. She was not sticky or anything. I swear. She was clean and being cute.

But - oh no! - The Dictator touched the glass case with all the sunglasses in them. And the owner of the store - 42 Saint - a cute twenty-something male who actually made purple nail polish work, said to me, "Um, can she not touch the sunglass case? It's on wheels. And, you know, kids and fingerprints."

I looked at him like he was crazy. It's one thing to tell me to "be careful, case is on wheels," but to add, "Kids and fingerprints?" Geez, have you not heard of Windex buster. There I was, about to try on a pair of pants that cost $100 US dollars, and this owner dude was all, "Fingerprints no-no."

Personally, if I owned a store and a kid came in, I'd let said Dictator touch the glass. Why? Because it would be worth it to make a $100 US sale, that's why. For a hundred US bucks, I'd get out the piece of paper towel and wipe of a mini-hand print and even throw in, "Cute kid you have."

But I was just a customer, not the owner. So I looked at the owner of 42 Saint and said, 'You know what? I can get those pants anywhere. See ya."

No one tells my daughter not to touch a stupid sunglass case. I was so irrate that I actually wanted to take back all the other clothes I bought last week. If I knew he was so anti-child, I would have never bought the clothes in the first place. (The Dictator was not with me the first time.)

But I didn't take the clothes back. Why? Because I loved the clothes, that's why. But I'm never shopping at 42 Saint again. I have pride, you know.

Anyway, I was kind of thinking that if anyone else out there had anti-children stories in stores, I won't shop there either. In fact, all moms should share their rude sales people stories, and maybe that way, saleslady and store owners will be nicer when you're just trying to buy a pair of pants and you have to take your child with you, because you are alone with child.

Trust me, I'm pretty sure I'll find another pair of pants I love. At a store that actually treats little kids as they should be treated - as future customers, of course.

Thursday, April 20, 2006

Mean Girls (the early years)

I wrote a few weeks ago about how kids satrt noticing what other kids wear around age 2, after The Dictator wanted a Dora Knapsack like all the other kids in her music class.

Today, I realized that girls become mean at age four.

That's right. Four.

How do I know this? Because today, hanging out at the Club, in Scottsdale Arizona, where I'm hanging with The Dictator, I saw Mean Girls (the early years) in action.

Kayla was about 5 years old. She had long beautiful brown hair and brown eyes. She was hanging at the kiddy pool with her friend, Meagan, who was about four years old. Meagan was, as the fiance says, "a piece of work."

I would describe her as a spoiled brat, but she was also very pretty and very outgoing. And then there was The Dictator, two years old. For some reason, 5 year-old Kayla took a liking to The Dictator and said, "I'm going to play with you now." To which The Dictator said, "Yah!" Then they jumped around and Kayla gave her a ride on her back in the pool.

Well, this just put Meagan in a foul mood. "You can't be friends with her and me," said Meagan. Then Meagan turned to The Dictator and said, "Who do you want to be friends with? Me or her?" pointing at herself and Kayla. To which The Dictator responded, "Yah!"

She respnded "Yah!" because The Dicatator is too young - thank god! - to understand the politics of girl friendships and had no idea what Meagan was saying.

Meanwhile, the mothers were tanning and gossiping and relaxing. Which I didn't have a problem with, because I was trying to do the same thing. However, if I was at a pool and it was my daughter saying, "You have to pick which one you want to be friends with," I would have at least said something like, "You can all be friends," or broken out into song like, "What the world needs now, is love sweet love."

I mean, if girls these days are mean at age 4 and 5, what does that say about what they're going to be like when they're 13?

On the one hand, I was happy that The Dictator held her own and continued playing with them, but on the other hand, I was like, "I'm not sure if I want The Dictator hanging around such girls."

Or maybe I'm just overreacting. I know that BFF stands for Best Friends Forever. And I also know that when I ask The Dictator who her best friend is, she always says, "Water is my best friend."

I know that "water" will not always be her best friend and that one day, sooner than I want, she'll be making and breaking friendships in less than five minutes. Sigh.

Tuesday, April 18, 2006

Loser Tagger

Obviously. this tag went around a few times and just got back to me. I get it! It's just like a game of tag! Genius!

I don't know why anyone would get annoyed with tagging. It's so fun! And you really get to know way-too-much-information about other bloggers, which means friendships or not. Just please like me after I do my Tag on weird goes:

1) I can only eat the brown and red M and M's. I don't know why. I just can't eat the other colors.

2) I have to sleep with my feet by the fiances head. I don't knw why. I just do.

3) I have a very unhealthy relationship with The L-Word. I'm so addcited to the show the fiance has started to ask me if I'm a lesbian.

4) I smell everything before I eat it. I don't know why, I just do.

5) I love diet Pepsi. I have never finised an entire can of diet pepsi though. I don't know why.

6) I Love Eggs. I do. I could eat eggs every day...I'm not sure that's so weird. Oh, I just realized in a yoga class that my left foot is so much bigger than my right. When the hell did that happen?

Tag. You're it!!!! (Anyone who reads this and hasn't answered Six Wierd Things about you! Do it for your next blog!)

Genius Dictator...not so much

I’m always very careful to not walk around telling people The Dictator is a genius.

I once did one of those IQ tests for babies and The Dictator was….a genius! Actually, no, she wasn’t. She was just “slightly below average” when it came to IQ for her age, at that time, just over a year.

But everyone knows you can’t really trust IQ tests, especially ones on the Internet, and that they’re just a way to kill time, unless you get a wickedly high score, in which case you can say you’re a genius.

The Dictator was "slightly below average" and that's definitely not something you want to walk around saying about your offspring. Anyway.

I’m really very careful to not walk around saying The Dictator is a genius, because I hate people who are constantly telling other people how super bright their child is because they can sing songs at age two. I mean, most kids can sing songs at age two. Hello? You don’t really have a genius.

I’m also very nice when I see parents of other kids who seem to be kind of advanced. At the kiddy pool today at The Four Seasons in Scottsdale, Arizona, there was a two year old, who could literally hold his breath under water and swim like a fish.

The Dictator, who is about six months older than this child, can sort of blow bubbles and can walk around in the kiddy pool, but she certianly can’t swim!

“That’s amazing!” I said to the father of the 2 year-old fish. “That’s amazing!” I know I made this father proud. Every parent feels proud when another parent comments on how advance their kid seems.

Last year, when we were vacationing at the Four Seasons in Maui, we headed to the bar to listen to some live music. The Dictator got up on the dance floor and started to shake her bum like Shakira. The Dictator always does this when she hears music, but so do most kids her age. (Dancing does not make your baby a genius. All babies like to boogie!)

An elderly woman came up to me and told me my daughter was “clearly a natural” when it came to dancing, and she couldn’t believe that I wasn’t a dancer myself, because where else would The Dictator have learned to dance so well?

(It was most certainly not from me. I’m Jewish, which means I have no rhythm when it comes to dancing, not that that stops me from dancing. It just stops me from dancing well.)

I told this nice woman The Dictator learned to dance the mumbo from her Dora The Explorer DVD. Of course, this elderly woman had no clue what I was talking about. Why would she? But her compliment made me feel proud. Maybe I did have a "cleary natural dancing baby!')

Yesterday, in the car, The Dictator, out of nowhere said, “R is for Rowan.”

“Yes! You’re right!” I said, stunned. How did she know that?

Then The Dictator said, ‘R is for Ruby my dog.” (We have nine-pound dog named Ruby.)

“You’re right again!” I said, thinking, “Oh my god. Maybe I do really have a genius. She knows ‘R’ is for her name and R is for Ruby’s name. She’s totally a genius!”

Then The Dictator said, “R is for Daddy!” Doh!

She should have quit while she was ahead. Genius? Not so much. But good dance? Cleary. In fact, I kind of think it's just fine by me if she turns out to have a low IQ but is a great dancer. Yup, I'm completely fine with that.

Monday, April 17, 2006

Interesting People

Don't you love meeting interesting people? The kind of people who you just want to talk to for hours?

Well, I met a couple yesterday who I can't stop thinking about. I met them at the kid's pool at The Four Seasons in Scottsdale, Arizona. The In-Laws were staying there, so The Dictator and I have been hanging out with them.

Anyway, The Dictator met a friend, Amelia, in the kiddy pool. At first, I thought that the elderly couple watching Amelia were her grandparents. They looked at least 65 years old and were talking about a friend's 70th birthday party. But then Amelia called them "mommy" and "daddy."

Whoa, I thought. Really? I got into a conversation with Amelia's father, who was hilarious (How could you not love a man who was drinking margaritas at 11 a.m. and doing the crossword?)

He told me they adopted Amelia from Vietnam about three years ago, when she was nine months old. He told me she was left on a doorstep. I found it pretty fascinating how open he was about adopting her, and how she was found. And Amelia, who was extremely well-spoken, bright, and polite for a three year-old, obviously lives a charmed life in New York, vacationing all over the world at Four Seasons resorts.

I guess really what fascinated me the most was this couple's age. I wanted to know what was behind their adoption story. Why they decided to do it at such a late age, when most of their friends are probably grandparents. Don't get me wrong. I think it's fantastic. And they obviously love Amelia and she'll have a great life.

There was another couple, a young couple, also at the kiddy pool yesterday, with their adopted daughter from Guatemala. Their baby was so super cute too and I also wanted to know what was behind their story. Why did they decide to adopt?

I suppose I don't really know what the etiquette is when it comes to couples who have clearly adopted. Maybe it's just the journalist in me who always has questions, questions, questions.

I couldn't find Amelia today at the kiddy pool. I guess they went back to New York. And I'll never know the answers. But, still, I can't stop thinking about them. I can't stop thinking about adopting.

Sunday, April 16, 2006

Thief! Thief!

The Dictator had her first run in with the law. Yup, that's right. The Law.

The Dictator stole a pair of shoes and a doll from BabyGap.

Nanny Mimi, The Dictator, one of my friends and myself all went to this mall in Scottsdale, Arizona, yesterday. Before we left, I was super-excited about this excursion.

"Shop and drop," I kept telling The Dictator. "That's all we are going to do today. Shop and Drop. Shop and Drop. Are you ready? Can you say, 'Shop and Drop?'"

"Shop and Drop," The Dictator would repeat. "Ready!"

"Good girl," I'd say, patting her on her head. Sometimes, The Dictator is so easy to train. Anyway.

We had stopped in the BabyGap, because there was this straw hat I've become obsessed with. Rather, I've become obsessed with The Dictator wearing this straw hat. Baby Gap had one left, which was on a baby mannequin all the way up above a stack of jeans.

(Why are the baby mannequins so much scarier than adult-size manniquens? And how do you spell mannequin anyway?)

The Dictator was in her stroller, The Baby Gap salesperson was on a ladder, trying to reach the straw hat, and it was pretty much a nightmare. As you could imagine, I wasn't exactly paying attention to The Dictator. I mean, I really wanted that hat for her.

After all that trouble, the hat - sigh - was too big for The Dictator's pint-size head. Frustrated, because I wanted the hat and it didn't fit The Dictator, and also because Nieman Marcus didn't take Visa and I was all ready to shell out big bucks for a Miu Miu white purse, I left Baby Gap in a bit of a huff. My "Shop and Drop" day wasn't going so well.

Halfway across the mall, I looked down only to see that there was a pair of shoes and a monkey doll in The Dictator's hands. Gaa! The Baby Gap tags were still on them. The shoes were about four sizes too small for The Dictator. And she already owns the doll she had stolen.

"Oh my God! You have to take them back," I said to Nanny Mimi, handing the "hot" items to her.





My friend thought we should just forget about it and take off but a) I'm no thief and b) the shoes The Dictator had five-fingered, were way too small. I mean, if you're going to steal something, at least steal them in your own size. Or at least that's what I told The Dictator. Joking.

Nanny Mimi ran back to Baby Gap and gave the shoes and the doll back. I'm grateful no alarm bells went off. Although, it would be kind of funny to call The Fiance and say, "This is my one phone call. The Dictator stole a pair of shoes from Baby Gap. Bail us out!"

I just love how toddlers want something in a store, and so they take it, like they have no worries in the world, like, 'La la la. I like that monkey doll. I'm going to take them. La la la."

Now I'm all paranoid that this experience will be the one I look back on in 14 years and say, "Well, she started out stealing from Baby Gap, and it just went downhill from there."

Thief! Thief!

The Dictator had her first run in with the law. Yup, that's right. The Law.

The Dictator stole a pair of shoes and a doll from BabyGap.

Nanny Mimi, The Dictator, one of my friends and myself all went to this mall in Scottsdale, Arizona, yesterday. Before we left, I was super-excited about this excursion.

"Shop and drop," I kept telling The Dictator. "That's all we are going to do today. Shop and Drop. Shop and Drop. Are you ready? Can you say, 'Shop and Drop?'"

"Shop and Drop," The Dictator would repeat. "Ready!"

"Good girl," I'd say, patting her on her head. Sometimes, The Dictator is so easy to train. Anyway.

We had stopped in the BabyGap, because there was this straw hat I've become obsessed with. Rather, I've become obsessed with The Dictator wearing this straw hat. Baby Gap had one left, which was on a baby mannequin all the way up above a stack of jeans.

(Why are the baby mannequins so much scarier than adult-size manniquens? And how do you spell mannequin anyway?)

The Dictator was in her stroller, The Baby Gap salesperson was on a ladder, trying to reach the straw hat, and it was pretty much a nightmare. As you could imagine, I wasn't exactly paying attention to The Dictator. I mean, I really wanted that hat for her.

After all that trouble, the hat - sigh - was too big for The Dictator's pint-size head. Frustrated, because I wanted the hat and it didn't fit The Dictator, and also because Nieman Marcus didn't take Visa and I was all ready to shell out big bucks for a Miu Miu white purse, I left Baby Gap in a bit of a huff. My "Shop and Drop" day wasn't going so well.

Halfway across the mall, I looked down only to see that there was a pair of shoes and a monkey doll in The Dictator's hands. Gaa! The Baby Gap tags were still on them. The shoes were about four sizes too small for The Dictator. And she already owns the doll she had stolen.

"Oh my God! You have to take them back," I said to Nanny Mimi, handing the "hot" items to her.





My friend thought we should just forget about it and take off but a) I'm no thief and b) the shoes The Dictator had five-fingered, were way too small. I mean, if you're going to steal something, at least steal them in your own size. Or at least that's what I told The Dictator. Joking.

Nanny Mimi ran back to Baby Gap and gave the shoes and the doll back. I'm grateful no alarm bells went off. Although, it would be kind of funny to call The Fiance and say, "This is my one phone call. The Dictator stole a pair of shoes from Baby Gap. Bail us out!"

I just love how toddlers want something in a store, and so they take it, like they have no worries in the world, like, 'La la la. I like that monkey doll. I'm going to take them. La la la."

Now I'm all paranoid that this experience will be the one I look back on in 14 years and say, "Well, she started out stealing from Baby Gap, and it just went downhill from there."

Monday, April 10, 2006

Oops...She did it again!

Britney Spears must be the most watched mother in the world at present.

Again, she made news this week when her baby, Sean Preston, somehow fell out of his high chair. Doctor was called in. Britney finally went for a second opinion at the hospital after Baby Sean seemed agitated a week later.

Of course, child welfare then had to stop by her home, as they do in these sorts of situations, pop princess or not. (Though it does make me wonder why so many other cases of serious child abuse go unnoticed.)

A couple months ago, Brit The Mommy also made news when she was photographed driving with her son in her lap.

Brit's argument was that The Papparazi was on her butt and she wanted to get away from them.

I feel for Britney. I do.

We all know how hard it is to be a mother. Imagine being a mother with thousands of photographers on your ass all day long. In fact, try it out. Imagine every decision you make when it comes to your child, that a photographer is watching you and those pictures of your screaming child would be published.

When one of my friend's son was a baby, she was making something hot in a blender and some of it sprayed out. Like a good mother, she went immediately to the hospital to get her son checked out. Of course, the doctors asked her quetsions like, "So what happened?" "Does he get hurt often."

The cutest, though, was when the doctor said to the baby, "That must hurt," and this two year-old answered, "Yeah, it hurts like a bitch." (Trust me, my mother friend was shocked too at her son's language. But it is kind of funny.)

The point is, children sometimes do get hurt. And sometimes it's our fault, even though we don't mean it. Like the time, I was lifting The Dictator up and down on an airplane and I conked her head on one of those mini tv-screens that comes down. Yes, it was my fault. But I didn't mean it. I was mortified. I still feel guilty over it.

Or the time, I was holding The Dictator and I slipped on some ice and we both went down.

I imagine Britney didn't take her son to the hospital immediately because she worried that if the press found out - which they would have - she'd be a dead woman. And she would have been.

Unfortunately, her plan kind of backfired, because now she looks even worse. "What? You waited so long to take your son to the hospital??????"

Britney knows what it's like to constantly be watched and photographed. Which is why it was completely insane of her to drive off with her baby in her lap. She must have known, or at least had the thought, that the photographs would be published. It's completely insane of her to not know, at this point, that every move she makes will be noticed.

According to the reports I read, Britney wasn't even holding the baby when he got hurt. The Nanny was.

I think we all need to let Brit be a mother now and stop watching her every move. Not because I'm not interested in Brit (because, scarily I am, I really, really am) but because that is what would be best for Baby Sean.

Mommies Rule!

Do you ever feel that people look at your differently once you've become a mother? And you look at life so different?

I don't know if "respect" is the exact right word, but I think it is pretty darn close.

I know some women in my Yoga class, when they find out I have a two-year old, are more willing to talk to me and show me the ropes. I'm not The Competition for them. No siree. I have a toddler, which means we're in this thing called life together. Having a toddler = good person. Just being a skinny girl = bad person.

Yes, there is a great divide between mothers and non-mothers. I don't care what any says. How many of us have lost friends after we gave birth and started raising a baby? How many of us don't even get e-mail spam from some of our former close single friends?

We're not blameless. But it's hard to care about a friend who has had her heart broken, for the gazillionth time, for the same reason she always gets her heart broken, when your child is puking and you haven't had a solid sleep in days. Likewise, why would any single friend really understand why you're getting so upset because your child didn't get into the Mommy and Me Music Class at 11 a.m.?

I used to write a girl-esque column for a Canadian newspaper. Half the stories I now look back and go, "Gaa? Did I really write about that?" If an editor asked me to go out and write about speed dating or the water bra or my new cool pants, I'd laugh it their faces. I'd think, "Who the hell cares about that stuff?"

Didn't you hear the news? Girl "I'm-so-Sex-and-The-City" columns are so, so out. Mommy columnists are in.

I started a Mommy Column in the Globe and Mail about one month ago. I'm so ahead of the curve. By about a month.

Aaccording to an article in The New York Observer, at least, this is true. And if it's happening in New York, Canada will, of course, follow. One of New Yorks most well-known sex writers, Amy Sohn, who I've been a fan of for a long time, is now stopping her Sex beat and writing about "Motherhood." Why? Because nine months ago she had a baby. She will now take on the Mommy Beat, writing about $800 strollers. You know, the stuff we care about as mothers.

I completely get her "career change." I read Sex-and-the-City columnists now, who've been writing about the same things for way longer than Sex and The City was even on the air, and I think, "Is this really what you think about?"

Sure, I used to write about designer jeans. Now I write about designer children's jeans. There's a huge difference.

I'm guessing only mothers understand what I'm talking about.

I can't help but think, with the trend of all these mommy columnists, we're going to take over the world...hahaha.

I knew it was only a matter of time....

The Arrival of...Moses

For a brief moment yesterday, the second I saw The Dictator and when The Dictator saw me, I was reminded of the day she was born and the overwhelming emotion.

After eight l-o-n-g days of not seeing The Dictator, she finally arrived! When she saw me, she beamed, giggled and threw her arms around my neck. It felt awesome.

One of my best friends, who has four kids, also just came back yesterday after travelling with her husband to Vietnam for 8 days.

"Oh my god, I missed them so much," she said, when I asked if she missed her children. I could only imagine. I mean, if I missed The Dictator, one mini-human as much as I did, and then had to times that feeling by four, I don't think I could do it.

Anyway, I'm feeling happy, happy, happy.

And perplexed.

So Gwyneth had her second baby and she named him Moses. I like the name Moses. Not as much as I like the name Apple, mind you. And Moses Martin does have a certain ring to it.

But while I felt that her choice of the name Apple for her first born was an honest decision. I kind of feel like Gwyneth chose the name "Moses" to get people talking, not because she loved the name for her child. And that sort of bugs me.

Apple and Moses. "Here are my children. Apple and Moses," "Moses and Apple! Stop bickering!," "Get dressed Moses!"

I have to keep saying this over in my head because her choice of the name Moses just doesn't ring true to me. It's like she thought she had to pick a unique name or something and that she knew the world was waiting with abated breath to see what she would call her child.

Moses. Moses. Moses.

Maybe it will grow on me.

Sunday, April 09, 2006


Ok, so The Fiance left me in our rented house in Arizona this morning, to go back home to work (ha ha) and The Dictator and Nanny Mimi don't arrive until tomorrow.

So what did I do today all by myself? Some retail therapy? Yoga? Spin class? Take a walk? Dip in the pool? Get my nails done? Get my WORK done? Get a facial? Sunbathe? Take a nap? Talk to friends I haven't spoken with in a while?

I mean, really, how many times, once you have a child, can you say, "Oh my god, I'm all alone. I can do anything I want."

I didn't do any of the above.

I did absolutely nothing and hated every moment of it.


Because the silence is, was, still is, freaking me out! Being alone now makes me utterly depressed. I've been down all day. Within two minutes after The Fiance left, I felt more alone than I've ever felt. Ever.

I used to love being alone. I used to love living alone. Once you become a mother, you think you need some well-deserved "alone time" and you probably do, but then once you get it, it's like, "Now what?"

I could have done so many things today. Instead, I watched the first season of Lost, the television show I couldn't fit into my already booked-solid television schedule, so I bought on DVD box set at Target the other day.

And I felt....lost.

I feel lost without people around me now, specifically The Fiance and The Dictator. I don't know how to deal with completely relaxing anymore, and not wondering what The Dictator is up to, or dying to call to check in on her 124 times a day.

I don't know how to deal with doing nothing, rather enjoying doing nothing anymore. It's funny, too, because all I could think of to make me feel not so alone (after calling The Fiance and The Dictator 173 times in two hours) was to blog.

And so here I am.

And I kind of do feel better. (Thank you.)

I took a spin class earlier this week, for the first time in months and months (I'm on a yoga kick now.) And it was just like...getting on a bike. I remembered how to do it. Will I remember how to enjoy being alone?

I know I liked being on my own at one point. I loved traveling alone. I loved being in hotels alone. I even loved staying home on Saturday nights alone.

And now...well, here I am. Alone. Hating every silent second of it.

I can't wait for The Dictator to arrive.

Having a child really does change you.

Friday, April 07, 2006

Choose Your Battles

The Dictator started a new class today. It's two-hours long. It's unsupervised.

Supposedly, she did great. She said, "Bye bye Mimi," and walked in. Just like that.

It went great, aside from The Dictator not having a "Dora the Explorer" knapsack, which all the other little girls had, and she wanted.

The Dictator did have a really cute box that Mabel's Labels sent The Dictator with some of their goodies - check out the side of my blog to look at Mabel Label's stuff - it is super cool.

Nanny Mimi explained to The Dictator that her box was "unique" and that seemed to placate The Dictator, especially when all the other little kids liked her yellow box.

Anyway, the age is TWO that little girls nowadays start noticing what other little girls have (for any expecting mothers out there, or those with toddlers younger than 2 - be forewarned!)

To The Fiance, I was like, "So, we'll get her a Dora knapsack." The Fiance was like, "It all starts now. First she wants the Dora knapsack, then she'll want the Ferrari."

I was like, "Well, what do you care? A Dora knapsack I can buy in Kensington Market for, like, $6.99!" So then The Fiance was like, "It all starts now," sighing and all, for effect.

So, I was like, "You want to choose this one thing not to give her? Because you can, but it seems silly to deny her a $6.99 knapsack. You have to chose your battles."

I don't care what any parenting book or "expert" says. I do think it's all about choosing battles. I choose not to battle over a knapsack, but maybe I'll decide to battle when The Dictator is nine and wants 12 pairs of jeans. (Which, of course, I won't be able to, because I own at least that many pairs of jeans myself. But I have seven years to figure it out.)

But you know what I mean. There will be bigger battles than a Dora knapsack.

While The Dictator started a new class today, so did I. I've been taking new yoga classes all week. There's nothing like being an "adult" and having to join new classes. I feel for The Dictator, I do.

It's hard at any age to walk into some place brand new - for me, walking into a Yoga studio in Scottsdale, Arizona, a place where half the pages in all magazines feature ads for plastic surgeons, and even the yoga instructors are wearing Prada shoes, was nerve-wracking.

But more about my Yoga in Scottsdale next week. I have to find a Dora knapsack. And maybe a little treat for myself for showing up to class all by myself too!

Have a great weekend!

Thursday, April 06, 2006

Horror Stories

So, as most of you know, I've been away from the Dictator for four days....only three more to go until I see her beautiful face. Monday, The Dictator comes with Nanny Mimi (who will hang with us for a week) in Scottsdale Arizona where I am staying for the month (And The Dictator will stay with me for the remainder.)

Of course, I get regular updates. Like today, for example, I was told that The Dictator showed up to her "music class" wearing a ridiculous outfit. (I have spies everywhere.)

Supposedly, The Dictator arrived with green pants, an orange vest (where'd she even get that?) and a striped shirt. Gaaa! (And I'm saying this from afar.)

I discussed this issue with The Fiance over lunch. "Well, she always looks good when you dress her," he said. "What do other people do?" What he meant was, do other nannies dress the kids or do the parents lay out the clothes for their nannies to put on their kids?

I had no clue. Usually, Nanny Mimi dresses The Dictator. She usually looks ok to me.

So I called my good friend who also has a nanny. "So do you lay out the clothes, or do you let your nanny choose what he wears?" I asked.

"Usually, she'll dress him. But sometimes I'll say, 'Dress him cute' and her definition of 'cute' and mine is obviously very different."

I know, I know, I shouldn't care that The Dicator showed up to her music class looking like a clown. (That wasn't my word. 'Clown' was my spies word.) I know it doesn't matter what she wears. I know all of this already.

And I usually wouldn't care so much that The Dictator was dressed like a clown, except, well, she also clocked someone. Yes, that's right. The Dictator slapped another two year old in class.

I don't like the hitting thing. I know, also, that it's their age. "At least she was the one doing the clocking," The Fiance said, trying to calm me down.

But that's not what I was thinking. I don't want The Dictator to hit other kids! I don't want her to be dressed like a clown when I go out of town! I definitely don't want her to hit other kids WHILE dressed like a clown.

I don't want The Dictator to be known as "that girl who dresses like a clown and clocks other people."

See? This is what I've been telling The Fiance. How can a mother relax on vacation while worrying about stuff like this?

Wednesday, April 05, 2006

Mommy Crises Secret

If I live to be 120, I'm having my quarter-life crises right about now. I'm too young to be having my mid-life crises, and I'm not sure there's a word for "trying to find myself at age 32." If that's what I'm trying to do.

There's something I haven't told you.

About two days before I left for Scottsdale, Arizona, where I now am for a month, I got punk red streaks in my head. Yup, punk red. I'm so 1982.

I mean, it looked really good on the hairdresser, who was doing my hair. Of course, she is about 22 and half-Cambodian, so already way cooler than I'll ever be, have been, am.

Anyway, I've always wanted to do it. So I did it. I'm 32. I don't have to work in an office, I don't need to ask my mother's permission ("Mom! It's just hair. It will grow out!") I just felt, shaking it, or me, or something, up a bit. And, I've already done the tattoo thing, dating a rock star thing, and the belly buttom peirce thing

In any case, I love the hair.

The Fiance hates the hair. I don't care that he hates the hair. I figured he would. What I can't stand is The Fiance looking at me every three minutes and saying, "Ohhhhhh, you're soooooo alternative." Really.

I'll be like, "Hey, you want to see a movie tonight?" And he'll be, "Ohhhhh, you're soooo alternative." Or I'll say, "I'm going to Yoga," and he'll say, "Ohhhh, you're so alternative."

Maybe the red-streak thing is a Mommy-Crises thing. I think it is. I'm fighting the whole, "You're a mother now. No more fun for you! No more wild and crazy experiences!" thing.

Good thing The Dictator is only two and can't threaten to take away my allowance.

Tuesday, April 04, 2006

The $140 (US) Jeans Part Deux

So, we were driving yesterday to dinner, when The Fiance said, "So, I've been thinking about those jeans."

My heart sank. "Crap! Crap! Crap!" I thought. "He's not going to let me buy them."

"What? You think they're too expensive for a two year old, right?" I said.

"No, it's not that," he said, which was so good to hear, because I had already have decided that I am going to buy a pair, a size or two larger than needed, for The Dictator.

"I just don't want her growing up thinking that brand names are important. I don't want her to know what Gucci is at age four," he explained.

I thought this was perfectly valid. Luckily, The Dictator is just two, and thinks that popsicle sticks are the next best thing to empty boxes. She does have a Dior shirt, a few Burberry items, and one Dolce and Gabanna shirt, and, really, she has not a clue and rather be naked.

"So, I'm going to buy them, right? Because she's only two and has no idea what brands mean," I said, just wanting to make sure that I wouldn't have to lie and say they were on sale. I was getting those jeans.

"Right," said the Fiance.

So I'm buying the jeans tomorrow. And that's that (Oh, and I also saw a mini pair of Vans for toddlers - remember Vans? - so cute. She's definitely getting a pair of those!)

Moving on to how the Mother In Law won't let me speak to my child. Ok, I have to be nice because she's a very lovely person who loves The Dictator probably more than me. Ok, that's not true. But you know what I mean.

I've been good, only calling Nanny Mimi three times a day to check on The Dictator. I really want to call every 30 minutes, but I know that Nanny Mimi would kill me, so would The Fiance.

But when The Dictator visits her grandparents almost every evening for two hours, and I call, The In Laws will be all like, "She's eating a treat right now. She can't come to the phone," or, "She's playing the piano. She can't come to the phone," or, "She's watching TV. She can't come to the phone."

Fifteen minutes ago, I just heard the, "She can't come to the phone" line from the In-Laws, and, I swear, I screamed, "I don't give a $%*^% what she's doing. She's my $#*% daughter and I want to *#%$^# speak to her right *#$%#* now!"

Ok, I didn't say that. Because they're my In-Laws. But, through clenched teeth, I explained I didn't care what The Dictator was doing, I wanted to hear her voice.

I mean, really. I miss The Dictator to death. To even hear her say, "Hi mommy," would be good enough. Too busy? WTF? She's two! She's never too busy to do anything, especically too busy to talk to her own mother!

Next time The In Laws call and ask to speak to their almost 40 year old son, I might just say, "Sorry, he's having a treat. He can't come to the phone." And see how they like it.

Monday, April 03, 2006

Pressing Questions

Ok, two pressiong questions.

First, do bikinis and helmets match?

Second, is it too much to spend $140 (US) on a pair of jeans for a two year-old?

So, we're in the house we rented in Scottsdale, Arizona. It is amazing. Aside from the first second we arrived and stepped into the backyard. I almost got hit in the face with a golfball.

That's right. The house we've rented backs out onto a golf course. Sure, everyone always says how great it is to live on a golf course. But is it? Is it really? I mean, sure, it would be if there weren't, um, bad golfers, who hit balls into people's backyards.

The second the real estate agent was showing us the pool in the backyard, and I'm standing there, thinking, "Ahh, life is good." When, yup, a golf ball flies by my face. One inch from my nose!

In any case, I'm really worried about my nose. My nose doesn't have good luck. Not at all. When The Dictator was two months old, I was so tired that I walked into a wall and nearly broke my nose.

Then The Dictator, you know, learned to kick and play, and, for some reason, is always headbutting me in the nose, or kicking me in the nose with her sneakered feet. My poor nose.

I'll be lucky to have this nose in one piece for, well, the next year.

I'll tell you one thing America does right though. Children's clothing. You would not believe what you can buy for children in America.

Yesterday, I was shopping and I saw a pair of True Religion jeans that would fit The Dictator perfectly.

"Do you think $140 is too much for a pair of jeans for Rowan," I asked The Fiance, who, luckily, is quite clueless when it comes to the pricing of kid's clothes.

He was like, "Sure. Buy them. Whatever."

But, sigh, even I knew that that was still extravagent. But they were so super cute. So, after spending all night, and I mean all night, thinking about whether to buy them or not, I've decided I'm going to get them. I mean, really, how many days can I say that I survived almost getting hit smack in the face with a flying golf ball? (In my mind, this excuse makes perfect sense to buy these mini jeans.)

Exactly. Now if only I could find a matching helmet so I can sunbathe in my Burberry bikini.