Thursday, 29 December 2016

Dookie - Our visit to Toronto's Poop Themed Cafe

Potty humour is a pretty big staple in the life of five year olds, and since the minions are generally polite little kids we let them away with giggling at things like giant sloppy raspberry kisses that sound like farts.  Jack has been a big fan of happy faces and emojis for some time now.  His two all-time favourite emojis are a giant Happy Face with hearts for eyes and pie-eyed grin who Jack gives a voice that sounds vaguely like something out of Cheech and Chong (named Romeo) and a smiling pile of poop (who Jack named Klum).  

When I heard that they opened a Poop Cafe and ice cream shop in Toronto at Christie and Bloor I knew both kids (Jack in particular) would get a real kick out of a cafe built around his buddy Klum. We added the poop cafe to our winter bucket list and surprised the minions with a visit there for ice cream yesterday afternoon and it was a huge hit.

First off, most of the seats are real toilets. 

There's also a display toilet but the front door so you can sit or squat while you wait for your table.

The seats have blocks when you lift up the lid so you don't fall in (Jack checked)

Kids are encouraged to try on a poop themed mask

It's called a "doo-doo head" mask, but us grown-ups know it's really a s$*t head mask
This is how my coffee came, in a giant toilet bowl mug

Poop shaped waffles are $3 each and come plain or filled with nutella goodness

We ordered the oreo ice cream sundae to share.  It was more than enough for the four of us and a big hit.

The kids had a blast and have asked if we can go back again.  I'll probably tie it to a spring or summer visit to Christie Pitts park since a cold toilet bowl full of ice cream seems like the perfect top off to a day at the park.  The food was reasonable, particularly if you're willing to share.  Our trip cost us just under $25 with tax and tip in, and was well worth the expense.  Molly says her favourite part was the nutella filled waffle, while Jack says his favourite part was the toilet bowl ice cream.  The added touches of poop emoji art, poop shaped pillows, and urinal shaped water glasses kept everything on theme without being a gross-out experience.  All the same I was a little surprised they didn't offer soft serve ice cream, but that might have crossed the cute to disgusting line.  This is a great experience for kids, adults, and anyone who likes ice cream or novelty. 

To get access to the newest posts from Multiple Momstrosity and more on Facebook click here and follow today

Multiple Momstrosity on Twitter @Sarabethbug

Thursday, 22 December 2016

Panic Song - Coping with Childhood Anxiety and Panic Attacks

Sometimes you get a glimpse into the way that other people see your children, or the assumptions you make yourself - no matter how inaccurate they may be.

Jack will fade in and out of conversations, and a lot of the time you might think that he isn't paying attention: then he'll surprise you.  He has an amazing memory, even if you think he hasn't heard a word that's been uttered, then he'll shock you by asking a poignant question, or reciting a memory, a story, or a poem verbatim.  Jack is a bit of a lone wolf.  Most of the time he's content to play with his sister, her friends, and the small slew of adults he'll bestow the honour of his friendship (seriously, there is nothing quite like when Jack selects you to be a part of his games or inner circle).  For the most part he likes school, but hasn't really bonded closely with other kids in his class, and this doesn't seem to bother him at all.  I've asked him about it a few times and most of the time he's content to "walk around and check things out" rather than play much with others.

Because of his Independence I somehow automatically, and mistakenly, assumed that Jack didn't care about the perceptions of others.  And for the most part he doesn't.  He's happy to be himself and won't bend that for the sake of social norms, which can be challenging not to intervene with as a parent, but I'm also super proud of how he isn't afraid to be himself.

Admiring his handy work on the Christmas Tree

Here's something I didn't get about Jack until last week.  He really loves his teachers and cares a lot about what they think about him, a lot more than he cares about what his fellow students think.  On Thursday night, I asked him about his weekly borrow a book and poetry book - he had mistakenly left it at his after school program.  It wasn't a problem, we'd get it the next night and work on it over the weekend.  About 20 minutes post bed time, I ran up to his room because he was hysterically sobbing.  He was worried about his bag, that he had left it, that it would get lost, that he wouldn't be able to practice his reading, and that he'd disappoint his teacher by forgetting.  He was anxious, he was upset, and he fully admitted to having a full blown panic attack.  He broke my heart when he sobbed, "Mommy I'm freaking out and I don't know how to calm down".

After half an hour of cuddling, and assuring him we would get this book back, no matter what.  I also told him that if by rare chance it got lost I would take care of it and talk to his teacher.  Eventually I was able to calm him enough that he went to sleep, in our bed.  For the most part I think I handed his anxiety and panic attack well, but I'm sure I could do better.  I did a little research, and I'm proud to say my instincts were pretty good, and that we found the book the next day.

Do's and Don't for Helping Your Child Cope with Anxiety, Stress & Panic


Take a moment to freeze the situation and help your child calm down by taking a few deep breaths.  Molly likes to pretend to smell a strawberry and blow out a candle, whereas Jack prefers just to take deep breaths, or listen to the Calm Down Song.


Minimize the anxiety, no matter how silly, because this is scary to them.


Empathize.  Show your child you understand why they're so upset.


Let guilt get in the way of helping your child cope.  You're doing the best you can. Make this about them, not you.


Help them figure out potential solutions.


Dismiss worry as a bad thing.  Worry has a purpose.  It protects us.


Help them bring their thoughts from "What If", to "What Is" in a logical way.


Simply give them a get out of jail free card for anything that stresses them out.  As parents it's easy to want to protect our kids from everything that upsets them, but this isn't doing them a favour.  Help them create mini goals to conquer any fears.  Celebrate them achieving the little steps they take.

To get access to the newest posts from Multiple Momstrosity and more on Facebook click here and follow today

Multiple Momstrosity on Twitter @Sarabethbug

Thursday, 15 December 2016

Oxford Comma - Sharing my writing on other publications

It's that time of the month again when I share some of the writing I've been completing for other publications.  There's seriously some pretty fun stuff that I got to write this month.

Nowadays as my full-time job I write and ghostwrite articles for online publications, organizations and blogs, in addition to providing public relations services.  While I can't really share my ghostwritten articles on this platform, cause then I wouldn't really be a ghostwriter would I, I can share some of the other stuff I have been working on.

I can't begin to explain how thankful I am for all of the support I've had over the years for my writing, and for life as a parent.  It means a lot!

As for Multiple Momstrosity content, don't worry, the minions are still up to their usual antics, and I have plenty more to write about on that front - particularly with the holiday break coming up.  Click on the links for the topics that interest you most, and if you enjoy what I wrote please share, like, and follow, and keep parenting and reading on!  If you have any ideas for a story, a playground review, or article on any front, feel free to share it with me!  I'm always looking for new sources of inspiration!

Image Courtesy of Pinterest

Parenting Writing

Image Courtesy of YouTube

Entertainment Writing

To get access to the newest posts from Multiple Momstrosity and more on Facebook click here and follow today

Multiple Momstrosity on Twitter @Sarabethbug

Tuesday, 13 December 2016

There's a hole in my bucket - Our Winter Bucket List

Last year winter was pretty warm.  This means it was cold enough out that we spent a lot of time indoors, but warm enough that we never managed to make it out sledding.  Like many things in life we find that if we don't write things down, fail to put them in our calendar and plan for them they never happen.

SAD tends to visit our family most years, so getting out and staying active is a must!  After our first snow storm this year, and the building of our first snowman we all sat down and built our holiday and winter bucket list.

Feel free to steal ideas from our list, and if you have any must see / must do suggestions please let us know so we can keep adding to our own list.

Molly named our first snowman of the year Miss Tenderheart

Winter 2016-2017 Family Activity Bucket List

(I've put a check mark beside the ones we've managed to complete)

  1. Build a snowman ✔
  2. Go sledding (for tips on tobogganing with toddlers click here)✔
  3. Go skating
  4. Visit the distillery holiday market ✔
  5. Attend a Marlies Game ✔ 
  6. Visit Santa ✔
  7. Build a snow fort
  8. Visit the Chill Ice House Lounge
  9. Check out holiday lights in our neighbourhood
  10. Go visit Santa Street Inglewood (Mount Pleasant and St. Clair)✔
  11. Make and decorate gingerbread men✔ 
  12. Visit the Kitchener holiday light tunnel (click here to learn about it)
  13. Throw snowballs at targets in our backyard (nope but we threw snowballs at mommy one day)
  14. Eat maple syrup snow
  15. Go tubing at Horseshoe resort✔
  16. Go swimming in an indoor/outdoor pool in the winter✔
  17. Go to Great Wolf Lodge in Niagara Falls for an indoor water day (click here to read my tips for the best possible stay)✔
  18. Visit Centennial Park Greenhouse for their holiday flower display (bonus points if we make it to the candlelit event before Christmas)✔ (bonus points awarded!)

    Molly finds a leaf on the ground at Centennial Green House last year
  19. Visit the Allen Gardens Holiday Flower Display
  20. Ontario Science Centre
  21. Maple Sugar Bush activities (late winter)
  22. Make marshmallow snowmen and eat them
  23. Drink hot chocolate✔✔✔
  24. Drink hot apple cider
  25. Go to a play together✔
  26. Go to the poop cafe (this one's for Jackie)✔
  27. Build a snow dog (Molly's suggestion)
  28. Go to an indoor playground✔
  29. Have a kid themed high tea at the Victorian Garden Tea Room in Etobicoke
  30. Make a snow candy cane (Jack's suggestion)

To get access to the newest posts from Multiple Momstrosity and more on Facebook click here and follow today

Multiple Momstrosity on Twitter @Sarabethbug

Thursday, 8 December 2016

Words of Wisdom: My kids in 140 characters (or less)

We spend a lot of time with the minions and I'm fortunate enough to record the things that they say and do so I can look back on it and laugh. Some of it makes the blog and other smaller moments don't. One of the brilliant things about Twitter is how it's the ultimate parenting "elevator speech", because you have to keep it short. Below are Tweets, conversations, parental musings and things that the minions have done or said over the past two months, for your reading pleasure that haven't made it to the blog.

1. M: why does live forever? Dad: cause he's magic, like a M: but he isn't going to suck my blood, right?

2. M:There are Zebra quarters in my head. Me: You mean cerebral cortex? M: yup!

3. M: why are they beating him up? Me: that's called crowd surfing. He likes it. M: Are you sure? (she doesn't believe me)

4. M: Mommy what is Me: No. M: But what is it? Me: Do you want ice cream? M: Sure.

5. J: Can I eat the crazy squares? Me: what are you talking about? J: this cereal.

crazy squares, naturally!

6. Walking down the street & see some guy light up a smoke. M: You're smoking secrets & ur gonna die! Me: shrug

7. When you find out your daughter has been telling all of her friends she has a , but she doesn't

8. J: I'm delicate & that makes me furious, ROARRRR! (guess emotions are on the curriculum this week)

9. Make muffins this morning for the kids. Then M cried because I didn't wake her up to help

10. M: Remember when I was sick & we walked J to school? U piggybacked me & I cried. We should do that again. I like piggybacks!

11. Me: I'm going to yoga class M: But who's going to look after us? Dad: I'm standing right here

12. Me: What month is it? M: Chewbacca Me: That's not a month M: Oh. It should at least be a week

13. Me: Your substitute swim teacher is good looking. M: He's like candy. I want to eat him up. Me: Where did you learn that? M: yum yum yum

14. M: Why does Ryder have so many dogs? Having more than 2 or 3 just doesn't make sense! It's just weird

To view my last three Twitter round-ups click here and here and here.

To get access to the newest posts from Multiple Momstrosity and more on Facebook click here and follow today

Multiple Momstrosity on Twitter @Sarabethbug

Monday, 5 December 2016

The Climb

For pretty much as long as I can remember I've had a very complicated relationship with my body and food.  I began my first diet in grade seven after a school bully punched me in the stomach for being fat (I weighed less than 100 lbs at a time) and was praised by everyone when I managed to get down to 85lbs.  The dieting just kept going from there.  When I was 15, I was mortified when I accidentally wet the bed because I was feeding myself practically nothing but water for a 72 hour crash diet.  For most of university I managed my weight by living off of Slim Fast as two squares a day and a somewhat human sized dinner.  For the most part that worked for me for a number of years (as much as being very unhealthy nutritionally but managing to maintain the numbers I wanted on the scale goes).

Grade 8 Me

Since that time I've yo-yoed quite a bit and am significantly heavier than I was when I was sucking back diet shakes and not much else. For a brief period in my late twenties I lost weight by working out 15 hours a week.  When Chris and I decided to have kids I figured it was a good time to re-evaluate my relationship with food, diet, and my body.  I met with a great nutritionist who helped me see food as fuel, and not as the enemy or a caloric number that I needed to be at war with.  I lost eight percent of my body weight and started trying to have a baby.

The battle of the bulge continues post babies, but with a healthier attitude.  I exercise very regularly and try to make healthy choices for our entire family.  Chris and I made a conscious decision not to complain about our bodies in front of the kids and talk about healthy food for energy and growth, as well as exercise.  We try to raise the kids in a body positive family and not projecting our own body issues onto the minions.

Recently the scale climbed 15lbs over only 10 days, during a time period where I was monitoring my food intake very closely.  I got worried and rushed over to the doctor's office to find out what was happening.  My body image has been really fragile lately, pretty near the Slim Fast days of shaky.

Me in University

The other night we were getting ready to set up our Christmas tree.  As we were sorting through ornaments and other decorations Molly walked up to me and told me I was like Santa Clause.  I laughed and asked her why.  She then pulled up my shirt and said, "Because of your big belly" as she grabbed at my stomach.  I felt the tears starting to well up and hit the eject button, running upstairs so I wouldn't cry in front of her. I didn't want her to  know the shame I felt over how my body was betraying me, or how unhappy and scared I was over the lack of control I had over my weight. Once I had collected myself, explained to Chris what had happened, and after I had re-applied my mascara, I returned to the festivities and tried to act like nothing happened.

A few times that evening she tried to grab at my body and I pushed her away.  I was hurt, upset, and mad at a five year old who had no clue what she had done. On one hand I was thankful that these comments were for me and not hurting anyone else, but on the other I was horrified at the prospect of being "the fat mom" for life.  The next morning I talked to her about people's looks and what is and isn't appropriate to say.  I didn't bring up the Santa comments.  I think and hope she gets it.

All weekend whenever she acted up I was a little less patient, a little less kind, and finding it hard to forgive her. None of this was her fault and here I was punishing her. Not in words, but in actions. In holding back and holding onto issues that have absolutely nothing to do with her.

She is such a kind girl and would never intentionally say or do anything to hurt someone, myself included, which is part of the reason why I went upstairs to cry.  She would have been gutted if she knew she made me cry.  I was treating her like she was the bully who had punched me in the stomach for being fat.

As I work through this health issue; this parenting issue; I will teach my children to be kind and compassionate and hope that they get it. Maybe some of it will rub off on how I treat myself.

To get access to the newest posts from Multiple Momstrosity and more on Facebook click here and follow today

Multiple Momstrosity on Twitter @Sarabethbug