One of the funniest things the Rascal ever said would occur in the backseat of our car on a fairly regular basis.

“Monkey,” he’d say, turning to his big sister (using her real name, of course), “you GAWBAGE.”

“You GAWBAGE, Monkey, you GAWBAGE,” he’d say. Josh-O and I used to look at each other in the front seat and try to laugh as quietly as possible. The Monkey would cry, of course.

“YOU GAWBAGE!”

Perhaps this traumatic event from the Monkey’s preschoolhood surfaced when she drew THIS hilarious masterpiece the other day….

The girl in the green is, I’m told, the Monkey. The girl in the purple is her friend Madison. And the sad little soul on hands and knees with the blond tuft of hair is her brother, the Rascal, “picking up garbage.” The green thing in the middle is the garbage can, by the way. And there’s an airplane overhead. The Monkey’s a stickler for detail….

The girls are dreaming of “being stars,” the Monkey explains. And the Rascal’s thinking “he wants to do something else.”

From the looks of things, garbage collecting, at least as a career, isn’t in the cards for our Rascal. At 4 years old, Gorgeouses, he can read! Or, well, he can “read.”

Now, I know you like when I post the odd video of the kids, and God knows the Rascal loves performing, so we videoed this just for you. It’s THE  RASCAL READING, or, well, “READING”! Enjoy…!

Hee! Now that I have an iPhone, I’ll be posting videos a little more, I think! It took NO TIME to upload it to YouTube!

Before I leave you to get back to my insane pre-holiday workload, which my amazing managing editor, Nadine Silverthorne, generously prioritized for me (Cheaty Monkey, of course, wasn’t on the list…but this is another QUICKIE post, and I’ve missed you…), I want to introduce you to the ladies who are successfully getting me to feed myself….

These are the brilliant, creative, gorgeous ladies behind the brand new Macrobiotic Centre of Toronto — and I’m so proud to call them my friends. That’s Miss Stan on the left, Alice in the centre, and Jill (the juicing guru!). Congrats, Ladies, on your amazing new venture. I look forward to many delicious takeout breakfasts and lunches, fresh juices, brunches, dinners, cooking lessons, weight loss, more energy, glowing skin, etc., etc.,  and FUN ahead. Psssst: join their Facebook group for all the inside scoop.

Back to work!

Love!

xo Haley-O


I don’t tend to think of myself as a “mom blogger.” And honestly? I loathe the term “mommy blogger,” so I definitely don’t think of myself as a “mommy blogger.”

One reason I don’t think of myself as a “mom blogger” is that the other day this guy I hadn’t seen in a long time saw me and said, “Hey, Blogger Mom!” Ew! I am NOT a violent person, but I wanted to clock him.

I also don’t think of myself as a “mom blogger” because I just don’t write about the kids that much anymore. I write about motherhood and my experience as an individual who is a above all a mom, but who’s also a lot of other things — so many things that my head is rolling from all the hats I wear on any given day. If they must have a name for me, then they can call me “Individual Blogger” or “Many Hats Blogger” or even “Writer Blogger.” Although being a mom is a massive part of who I am, a big reason I write this blog is to assert, find, express my individuality — or at least my individual experience.

Anyway, last week I took 10 minutes to not write about emotions, and this week I’m taking 10 minutes to not write about my kids. Instead, they’re going to speak for themselves!

I’ve compiled a bunch of Monkeyisms and Rascalisms that I’ve tweeted over the last several months, and I’m sharing them right here — both as a way to document the adorableness and, of course, to blog it, like a good Many Hats Blogger. So without further ado, I bring you MY CHILDREN, in their own words…. There are quite a few gems in here, I think. Enjoy!

Love! Now, Gorgeouses, if you follow me on Twitter, you can see all these Monkeyisms and Rascalisms in REAL TIME. And if I’m not following you back and I should be, please let me know. Sometimes I find people I can’t believe I’m not following back….

And guess what? If this post seems wonky and clunky to you, it IS! And you know why? DAY 5, baby! We are on DAY 5 of NO STARBUCKS SOY CHAI LATTE. This is record-breaking, Gorgeouses. Record. Breaking. I’m feeling like crap. A lot of EMOTIONS bubbling up, a headache, a nervous cough that’s getting reeeeeeeaaally attractive, and this annoying repetition of vowels in blog posts. I’ll try to get a handle on that last symptom soooooon.

The good news is, though, that I’m eating so much better. I actually think I have low blood sugar, or whatever that condition is when you need to eat often. Because I’ve become more aware of when I need to eat — which seems to be quite frequently! This is fascinating to me. I’m, like, a grazer now. You can find me at my desk EATING now, most likely a banana, or a salad, a soup. ME! It’s crazy.

Speaking of work, have you checked out our shiny new website at Todaysparent.com (check me out at work — in a meeting — in the photo!)? This was a labour of love for me and my amazing co-workers, and we’re still working away to perfect it. My blog, Celebrity Candy, will get gorgeous within the next couple of weeks, they tell me. But I’m posting there, so checkit!

And since I’m not blogging about my children today, I HAVE to tell you the Rascal is about to get a new belt next week!

Even though I’m not a blogger mom…: squeeeeeee! I’ll be okay. But it’s amazing what he can do with that strong little bod!

Love! xo Haley-O


I wrote this post yesterday — Tuesday, December 21. But then my blog went haywire. Apparently we were “raided.” Raided. This is sooo because of the solstice/lunar eclipse. Because a) when on earth does that ever happen? and b) I’ve spent the past three days dealing with the IT guys at work, too — all of whom are flummoxed by the computer problems I’m having. I am cosmically clashing with technology. Anyway, read this now — before your computer poofs into stardust.

It’s the winter solstice, December 21, and there was a lunar eclipse last night, woahh! Double Rainbow! In celebration of this monumental event — when was the last time there was a concomitant lunar eclipse and winter solstice in your very own backyard? — I give you Random Mysterious Lunar 21.

1. At 3:43am last night, which was approximately smack-dab in the middle of the eclipse (2-5am), I bolted awake, looked at my clock as I always do when I wake up 45 times a night (thanks to a little boy who refused to sleep unless he was on top of me for three years), threw on my fuzzy pink slipper boots, a too-short black coat, and dashed out the back door with Betty White in tow. I was a little bit afraid of vampires and zombies, but I sucked it up. And this is what we saw alone together in the backyard in the starry black of night….

2. Betty White refused to look up at the moon no matter how frantically I snapped my fingers in the air so she’d tilt her head in the moon’s general direction and maybe lock eyes with it for a second and become enlightened. But no….

3. Minden also refused to become enlightened when I tilted his head to the sky…. But I still think he’s brilliant.

4. MAAARGE!

5. Josh came outside when I nudged him unapologetically awake, and he took this really creepy-awesome picture apparently while slipping in the snow….

6. Speaking of mysterious round things, check out BAKED APPLE. All you need to do is fill a cored apple (leave apple bottom in tact) with crushed walnuts, raisins, cinnamon and a drizzle of syrup, and place it in the oven covered with a little water on the bottom at 350°F for half an hour or so. I’ll post it in the kitch with more deets when I’m a little less lazy….

7. My wise friend/yoga buddy/brilliant macrobiotic counselor Alice would approve of my baked apple. I know because I just ate her surprisingly delicious “Intuition Stew,” which she was awesome enough to leave for me at the yoga shala today — verklempt. I feel so intuitive right now.

8. Alice asked me if the Monkey knew our Dreidel video may be shown to thousands of people. “Of course!” I said. “She couldn’t sleep the night before her teacher showed it to her Kindergarten class three times, and shrieked with utter glee, ‘I AM ON TVeeeee,’ and tilted her head inquisitively while asking, ‘Mama, why don’t you show my face? I want my face on there.'”

9. Justin Timberlake as a Cup o’ Soup. OMG. I can’t deal.

10. Just like her mama, the Monkey (already) loves boys. But apparently they’re not allowed in her room. Which brings us to our next mysterious round thing….

11. And other mysterious drawings…?

12. …among the many others that she taped onto her door. Never mind Bawbara — move over Debby Travis AND Martha Stewart!

13. Mysterious WRITINGS have also mysteriously popped up on her now-mysterious radiator…

14. …and on her now-mysterious dresser…

15. Please send eco-friendly children’s marker (and sticker) remover? Who’s the PR rep for that. We could do big things together here!

16. She’s talented, that Monkey…. Karen Kain and Mikhail Baryshnikov must also move over. Bring it on, So You Think You Can Dance! Bring. It. On.

17. One of my favourite parts of the Monkey’s dance show was definitely the bar work. That fifth position is tricky! (I also loved the part when another little dancer interrupted the teacher to whisper “I have a Zhu Zhu pet” in her ear.)

18. The Monkey’s brother’s favourite part was no doubt the candy-cane-Rice-Crispy-square-and-cupcake “pawdy” (trans. “party”)….

19. Mmm, food colouring. I was so proud.

20. I’m also so proud because (are you ready?) THE RASCAL IS FULLY TOILET TRAINED. Fully and FINALLY toilet trained. Turns out he had no idea that he could “hold it in.” I literally had to teach him how to “hold it in” — to do what moms would call kegels and what yogis would call bandhas. Yes, I taught my 3-year-old son kegels and bandhas, and he hasn’t had an accident since. Go Rascal!

21. I can’t keep up at all with my email. And I feel terrible about it because I rarely get around to responding to your comments. To fix this problem, I’ll be responding to all your comments in the comment section — unless I have something intensely personal to share with you.  (I’ll definitely email to say a special “hey” once in a while, though.) It’s going to be fun, Gorgeouses! So check back after you leave a comment, okay? Also, leave comments. You know, so we can test this out…. Oh, okay, what blogger doesn’t love comments?

Happy solstice! And congratulations to all of us for getting to the end of this post. Did you happen to see the eclipse? DISCUSS.

Love!

xo Haley-O


I have absolutely no idea what I’m going to write here, as I sit down to this empty screen, eyes half closed, the monkey still up watching “Star Party” — aka the Dancing with the Stars finale.

Team Grey!

I just popped an oat-bran bagel in the toaster oven — probably my last for a long time as I embark on, yes, another diet. Well, not really a diet, more like a way of life. It worked this morning when I enjoyed my oatmeal-and-almond-milk-with-syrup-raisins-walnuts-and-cinnamon breakfast and the resulting stable moods and unexhausted energy level for hours.

“You’re very quiet today,” my co-worker remarked as she passed by my desk this morning. It’s because I didn’t have that blasted morning Starbucks soy-no-water-tazo-chai latté that makes me bounce off the walls every morning. “You really know how to have a drink,” the barista told me the other day as my dreaded order rolled off my tongue dreamily, effortlessly. “I know,” I said, drooling and shaking. “I know.” Gimmemychai….

But this afternoon was a big fat FAIL when the Rascal BEGGED to go to a bookstore — with a Starbucks in it. Danger! DANGER! BEEEP! BEEEP! Moods plummeted. Patience erupted. I believe I may have even roared at one point when I noticed the dishes in the dishwasher were clean. Don’t worry, the kids were out of earshot….

Betty White (the dog) is looking at me with a “what’s wrong with you?” look on her face. I think it’s because I’m not only watching Skating with the Stars, but I’m PVR’ing it, too. And one of the judges actually just said, “you have a spiffy personality.” That same judge’s name is Dick Button. And, woah, it’s time to announce each judge’s score, and the host(ess) calls his name out unnaturally seriously: “Dick. Button.” Josh just asked me if this show is a “spoof.” No. Not a spoof.

I was also quiet at the office today because my beautiful MARRRGE is very sick.

The fact that she only weighs six pounds, and is losing weight as I type this, has nothing to do with Betty White, as I, in denial, suspected, and everything to do with something called hyperthyroidism. Apparently it’s very common in cats. But I WILL NOT send her to that radiation centre they recommended — where people in full radiation garb and Darth Vader masks give her food and scoop her poop for a whole week and just maybe pet her wee head with giant gloves. She’s almost 15 years old. That would KILL HER. Plus, I keep thinking of that guy who died on 24 of radiation poisoning while trying to save the world. Awful. And do I really want a potentially radioactive cat in my home? She’s creepy enough already.

I just have to keep her comfortable and happy. I don’t need to cure her with anything that glows in the dark and requires total isolation and (did I mention?) serious money, and the Darth Vader masks. Thankfully, I managed to find a less freaky therapy that’s a little high maintenance, but relatively comfortable for MARRRGE (3 R’s) and affordable.

Now, I’m going to send you off with something funny…. Maybe you had to be there to find this funny, but I’ll go for it anyway.

As you may know, the Rascal has a favourite stuffed animal that he calls Doggy. There’s the background.

So this morning the Monkey was brushing her hair (“it’s gold now, Mama!) and marveling at the freshly-brushed softness. “TOUCH IT TOUCH IT IT’S SO SOFT TOUCH IT!” she insisted. When she got to the Rascal, she bent her head down and said:

“TOUCH IT. JUST TOUCH IT! Touch it and you’ll forget about Doggy!”

O.M.G. funny!?! I think it’s brilliant. You had to be there?

If it’s not funny, it’s a lesson for shampoo advertisers everywhere:

“Hair so soft you’ll forget about your binky….” Do you love it? You heard it here first, Gorgeouses! Hee!

NO, Josh, this is not a fake show. Skating with the Stars is, sadly, FOR REAL!

One more thing before I go to bed. I’ve been writing nonstop articles over at Todaysparent.com — hence the shortage of posts here. It’s been crazy! Also, be sure to look out for my two-page personal (“humour”) article in the January issue of Today’s Parent Magazine! Eek!

Love!

xo Haley-O


One problem with blogging is that people think they know you — I mean, the whole you — based on the posts you write. It’s happened before that people have made assumptions about me based on this blog. And while I now have no problem with that, it’s still not the whole truth. It’s all true, of course, yes! But you’ll never get the whole truth from twice-weekly, or even daily, blog posts. Or even seeing someone in real life, for that matter. People are sort of different every time you see them, don’t you think? I may dislike someone one day and LOVE them the next. Everything’s fragments.

And still you come back here and you read, I guess, the truth of this moment. And how much do I love you for that? Because it does get lonely behind this screen sometimes.

So today I give you A BUNCH of truth fragments in one post, and then maybe I can take the rest of the week off because I am tired. That’s probably the whole truth right there. If you see me in real life, go right ahead and assume I AM TIRED.

Checkit!

1. At the end of my much-interrupted 6am yoga practice this morning, I lay down in savasana (or corpse pose), and Rascal stood over me and asked, “Mama, are you dead?”

2. He also asked if he could lie on my back while I was in a seated forward bend — nose to knees. I let him, of course. And he’s a feather. I felt nothing.

3. The Monkey is obsessed with Netflix’s preview of The Swan Princess, which is basically this song….

I’m telling you, plunk your kids down in front of that video, show them how to make it play again, and go make dinner, or read a novel (the whole thing), shave your legs…. You deserve a break.

4. Rascal says “rorot” instead of “forgot.” And he says it a lot — reminding me never-too-often of him….

Rrrrroobydoobydoo!

5. He also calls my Macbook a “puter” (pronounced “pewdah.”)

6. Because 2 cats and a dog aren’t enough, we’ve adopted a new member of the family. Meet “Pixie Hollow”:

7. I may only be blogging here once or twice a week, but I’m blogging over HERE up to FOUR TIMES A DAY, sometimes even in a British accent.

8. I only APPEAR outgoing. I’m very very shy and uncomfortable at blogging events……

9. The Monkey’s been obsessed with drawing hair lately…. (Click to enlarge.)

10. Speaking of hair…, the Rascal wants his hair cut. But I say “no,” because there’s nothing like 3-year-old bed head. There just isn’t….

11. Betty White is apparently a very long dog. This jacket is size MEDIUM. She’s a tiny dog — there’s no way I’m getting her a large….

12. I’ve said this before, and I’ll say it again. He…completes me….

Love!

xo Haley-O


I love the number three. Right now, as I think of the number three, a vision of the swimming pool at my in law’s country house surfaces in that hazy space between my temples — the monkey taking another step into the cold, sparkly water: “Mama!” she proudly exclaims, “I’m on the THREETH step! I’m on the THREETH step!”

Threeth. I couldn’t bare to tell her the word is “THIRD.” “THIRD.” Because the word should totally be “threeth.” Totally. “Threeth.” Don’t you think?

Wait, so it was somebody’s birthday today!!!!!


Woahhh! How’d that get there. Oh. I guess it’s dinner time. (Heh. Isn’t he GORJ?)

So it was someone’s THREETH birthday today!

Even if I DID put pictures of my kids’ faces on this blog, I’d never be able to catch his. Not today. He’s been too busy playing with the best birthday present EVER (if I do say so myself). It cost a little more than I wanted to spend — but it was so worth it. Look at his little hand. He’s so into it!

I could definitely write a sappy love post to my Rascal. There’d be no shortage of words or sweet nothings. THAT HAND. But I’m a little fahklempt right now. THREE(th). Tired from making this day as awesome as possible for him. Feeling like being quiet.

So here….

Celebrate with us (we had cupcakes).

Rascal, you’re three. You’re my little buddy. My sidekick. My little MAN with your mucka and your moe. I just LOVE you. I cover you with sloppy kisses, you KISSER you. And you whine at me and whine and whine when you’re tired. And you’re so HIGH MAINTENANCE. But it’s worth it for the LOVE and the way you replace your Ls with Ys and the way you drool sometimes when you’re really into what you’re doing or what you’re saying. So full of LOVE you are. And you DO love your mama. You love your mama more than anything, and what a gift it is to be loved more than anything, and I thank you. I love you with my whole heart and soul and every cell and nucleus and atom of my being I love you. I LOVE YOU, my baby.

Sweet Rascal, Happy Birthday.

Love Mama.


As many of you know by now, I am a woman of extremes. One day I’m letting it go, and the next, today, I’m reining it in. What is up with my karma, Gorgeouses? I have some major, major karma to deal with. I mean, obviously, it could be worse — like, Oedipus (dude had some bad Karma), Anne Boleyn or George Costanza…. But this is definitely a karmic situation. And I’m not talking this Situation, for the record….

Looove. Seriously. Not in a Clive Owen kind of way.

I just struggle. I really struggle with the day-to-day stuff. My problem is that I just want to do whatever I want. Period. I struggle between my intense desire to do whatever I want and my severe desire to live an ideal life. I get completely overwhelmed by the idea that there may be a balance between these two extremes — freedom and restriction — but, I know, there is freedom in restriction, and that there is so, so much restriction in, erm, gluttony….

Woahh, this is getting to heady for us.

Take my puppy Betty White, for example. She knows exactly what she wants or needs to do. She’s perfect at it if you think about it — running in the yard, eating when she’s hungry, attacking me with kisses while I’m driving…. She’s definitely one of my idols when it comes to my karmic situation. Not this Situation, for the record….

Looove. Seriously. Not in a Javier Bardem kind of way.

Before we continue our very important conversation here, can we talk about Mr. Bardem’s serious hotness in Eat, Pray, Love for a second? Omigosh, SWOON. Hold on a sec, here….

Paaaaaaauuuuuse………

Sure, I’m one lucky woman. Not as lucky as Julia Roberts, who got to spoon Javier Bardem….

But she did it. Or, her character, Elizabeth Gilbert did it, or at least wrote the book about it. Elizabeth Gilbert — the same woman who reminds me that no woman, none of us, really knows what she’s doing these days. We have oodles of choices, and, having no oodles-of-choices predecessors, we struggle with what to do with these oodles. Here, let her say it herself….

No wonder, amid a sea of Eat, Pray, Love haters (I know you’re out there), I love Elizabeth Gilbert. She and I are, like, the same person: neurotic and struggling among the extremes of pleasure, restriction and relationships, and we are a wee bit obsessed with yoga, writing and eating. Fast forward to the last few minutes of the video….

Oh, heady again.

…When all I meant to write about was Betty White at the dinner table….

(Underbite.) She’s out of control!

(Tongue. Also chili.)

And he! He stole my favourite lip gloss!

(Bottom-teeth gap.)

And this. Between me and my macbook….

(Withkerth.) — You have to say that one out loud to understand it.

Out of control. Or, in Canadian speak, OOT of control. I’m starting to talk like that, Gorgeouses. For real life, eh? (“For real life” is actually Monkey speak for “For real” — FYI.)

Sighh. Anyway, I think I’m going on a diet (ish). And I’m doing Ashtanga yoga again — an hour or so every day but Saturdays and moon days.  Because it’s one or the other for me. I just feel like there’s freedom in it. In not having to choose all the time…. Dammit.

One day I’ll write the book on my karmic roller-coaster journey among extremes. And I’ll call it Dogs at the Dinner Table. It has a ring to it, right? On the cover, a picture of me and Betty White in downward-facing dog pose…. You can read it on your Kobos (my latest obsession. see twitter).

Next Page »