Friday, 31 March 2017

Thank You For The Music

March has marked a rough month sleep wise in our home.  There have been growing pains, stomach aches, and nightmares; most frequently popping up the night before mom or dad have a big work meeting, because that's just the way life is sometimes.

Most of these middle of the night scream serenades wake up the entire house, which means we have not one, but two little ones who are awake and want to crawl into bed with mom and dad.  This is where our spare room comes in handy.  We've been tired, and we've been grumpy as a result, but I'm thankful for a flexible work schedule that allows for the minions to sleep in a little so I can walk them to school on the mornings following a particularly rough night on nightmare mountain - even if it means more night shifts plugging away on my laptop.

As I dropped the kids off at school this morning (last night there was an epic nightmare about a fire monster) I realized that Molly has stopped kissing me goodbye at the school yard. I'm guessing she feels a little too grown up for that now.  I still get a hug, but nothing more before she runs off to greet her friends.  She's also requested an alarm clock so she can wake up, get dressed and ready for school without the assistance of mom, which is fantastic - I mean we want to raise our kids to be independent adults, but it also stings a little.

A picture snapped by a friend years ago of Molly asleep in my carrier on a hike

One of the things I'm finding about having multiples as your only children (or having only children I imagine) is that once a phase is over it's gone forver.  We couldn't wait to get over diapers and full-time daycare costs, but I'll admit I miss the feeling of a baby falling asleep in my arms, those kisses from Molly at drop off, and the way that Molly used to call Wheat Thin Crackers Hayden Crackers.
Both kids still run to me with open arms and big hugs whenever I pick them up from school or aftercare, but I know that those days are limited too.  It helps a little that Jack is really affectionate and in a little less of a hurry to grow up than his sister

So as we continue to have our bed invaded by little star fishes on a regular basis I'm trying to savour it instead of begrudging it.  I'll cuddle them, stroke their hair and watch their little cherub cheeks while I can.  I mean a full night sleep would also be great, but for now I'm going to enjoy today, and maybe take a nap if I can.

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Thursday, 23 March 2017

There's A Hole In My Bucket: Our Spring Family Bucket List

The minions really loved knocking items off of our winter bucket list and it definitely inspired us to book stuff and get out and move, even when we were tempted to just curl up and binge on some Netflix.  We didn't do great on our list, but we got out there and tried a lot of new things and knocked 14 of the 30 things off.  Since some of the items are still doable for spring we moved a couple over to our spring bucket list that we worked on collectively as a family last night.

This list is designed to get us out there and enjoy everything that spring has to offer; I'm hoping that we do better on this one than we did on our winter one!

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.  I'll be adding check marks and writing posts as we cross stuff off our to do list.
An oldie but a goodie picture of little Molly enjoying the great outdoors

  1. Attend a Maple Syrup Festival✔
  2. Plant a garden✔
  3. Go and see Beauty & the Beast in Theatres✔
  4. Go and see Boss Baby in Theatres✔
  5. Go Camping in June✔
  6. Go to the Victorian Tea House for a family tea (we hosted our own tea with Nana for Mother's Day) ✔
  7. Explore three new playgrounds or parks✔
  8. Visit neighbourhood gardens for ideas✔
  9. Go and see the cherry blossoms in High Park✔
  10. Fly a kite
  11. Try using a scooter
  12. Ride our bikes (learning to ride a bike)
  13. Complete a nature themed scavenger hunt
  14. Go on three hikes✔✔

    A moment from an autumn hike
  15. Draw a giant rainbow using sidewalk chalk✔
  16. Make Toronto beautiful with a park clean up day
  17. Enjoy the sun and lay on the ground to watch the sun and the clouds
  18. Do family Easter egg hunt✔
  19. Make a flower crown out of dandelions
  20. Jump in muddy puddles
  21. Go to a baseball game with daddy✔
  22. Go to an outdoor flea market or craft market
  23. Go to garage sales✔
  24. Throw stones in the water✔
  25. Go for a walk along the water on the lake and beach
  26. Make a spring themed rainbow dessert
  27. Bust out that BBQ for some grilled food✔
  28. Visit a farm
  29. Go to the Zoo ✔
  30. May the 4th Star Wars Themed Event✔

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Tuesday, 21 March 2017

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 month, for your reading pleasure that haven't made it to the blog.

1. J: I work for now Me: What do you do for him? J: Some stuff, but mostly I just hold his

Jack meets Darth at a Marlies Game...It was emotional & he didn't want to get too close, you know cause of the mind strangling and such.

2. M: That sign says to walk like turtles Me: It says that cars need to go slow. M: That's confusing, can we still pretend to be turtles?

3. Evil moment...when u can't help but smile because ur child finally steps on the he's left on the ground & finally gets it

4. J: Mommy what do Daddy short legs spiders look like?

5. J: I'm & I'm casting a spell on u. Ur a Me: That's the best you've got? J: Just wait it will get to you

6. At the playground me: can you please take it down a notch? J: where else am I supposed to use my outdoor voice?

7. Watching w/ sitter J: Beryl gets disappointed with people. Sitter: Why? J: Because she fails, No one likes it when people fail.

Image courtesy of wikipedia

8. Hairdresser: What do you want your cut to look like? Both Children: Pull out of heroes from

To read more blogs on my kids on twitter click herehereherehere, here, and here.

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Thursday, 16 March 2017

Everyday I Write The Book: Sharing My Writing On Other Sites

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, I am particularly excited about the research I completed on the psychology of waiting in lines and why we hate it so much as well as a look at some of the bizarre baby names celebs select for their offspring.

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, the kids always keep us guessing.  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!



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Wednesday, 8 March 2017

Butterfly Kisses - Our Trip to the Niagara Butterfly Conservatory

We're in the dog days of winter, when we're all looking forward to the promises of spring and summer.  I am already planning our spring and summer vacations (but more on that later).  Last year we started an annual mid-to-late winter tradition of going for a weekend overnight in Niagara Falls. 

This year, after our adventures at Great Wolf Lodge, we went to the Niagara Falls Butterfly Conservatory to add a little bit of colour to an otherwise grey Monday.

Molly was skeptical when we told her that the butterflies inside were the same size as this sculpture

We weren't sure how the minions, Jack in particular, would react to 2,500 butterflies flitting around their heads, but the trip turned out to be a huge success!

Admission is free for kids five and under, so the timing was perfect for a first visit.  Kids six and older pay $9.45 plus tax admission, while those 13 and older pay $14.55 plus tax.

Lush greenery and zebra stripes

Butterflies eat oranges and bananas, who knew?

Winter and spring hours are Sunday to Friday 10AM to 5PM and Saturdays 9AM to 5PM.  In the summer the conservatory extends their hours to 7PM and 8PM some nights.

Rock Landing

Exploring the warm paths

The staff are very knowledgeable, accessible and patient (even when you ask them numerous questions about poisonous frogs, butterflies, and eating them).  We were taught ways to get the butterflies to land on us, how to be gentle and move them off of the pathways. The kids learned gleefully about the butterflies, were happy to hold them, and Jack shocked us as being the most intent on having all of the butterflies "taste" his hand with their feet.  I highly recommend this as an educational destination for little ones who love nature!

The Butterfly Whisperer 

Don't Move, Even When It Tickles
Looks like pretty feathers
A New Friend Landing
Tip for anyone who wants more butterflies to land on them: show up wearing bright colours!

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Thursday, 2 March 2017

Footloose - Motivating Kids With Rewards

When I was in middle school in the late 1980's/ very early 1990's name brand clothing was EVERYTHING, particularly at my suburban Etobicoke school.  My parents didn't subscribe to the same brand of cool as my classmates and most of my clothes were hand-me-downs from my preppy older sister.  My parents priorities were getting us fed and saving for post secondary education for three kids, so they'd never drop the same amount of coin on a Club Monaco sweatshirt, or whatever else was the flavour of the week, especially since I was still growing.

One day I came home to a pair of brand new women's Nike Air runners in the front hallway of our house.  They were my mom's, but just the same I was smitten, we were practically the same shoe size after-all.  After hours of me playing dress-up with my mom's shoes like I was five instead of 13 and begging for her to let me wear them to school, just once, my parents cut me a deal.

I've always been the least athletic of my siblings and my dad was always looking for a way to inspire me to find something active to fall in love with.  My parents told me that if I jogged, an intended purpose of running shoes, at least 25 times over the next two months the shoes would be mine.  I was motivated and I ran, a lot, because I wanted those shoes!

In just over six weeks, I "earned" the shoes.  I went for maybe three other jogs that year, all in my new kicks, and most of them related to my dad hounding me to go for a run and practically begging me to "Just Do It".  As an adult I get how frustrating this must have been for my parents, and I understand why they did it.  Falling in love with a sport can lead to a life-long healthy habit.

The best kid response to my new running habit

I didn't run again, aside from gym class, for years.  I took up running "for reals" in my first year of university as a measure to combat the freshman fifteen and then again in my mid-twenties when I ran my first 10KM (a Nike Sponsored run - I guess they still inspired me, over a decade later).  I picked up running again in January this year for the first time since before I was pregnant, and I've fallen back in love with it, only this time Nike isn't involved.

On the parenting front we've had trouble motivating Jack to work on his writing.  He'll barely sit through the Occupational Therapist prescribed five to ten minutes a day and a lot of the time he's just going through the motions to get us off his back.

Last week I came across a sold out Lego Toy he wanted and I bought it for him, but he could have it under one condition - he dedicate some real concerted effort on his writing and reading every single day for a week.  This toy, sits on top of a shelf in our living room and Jack can look at it and hold it, in all of its packaged glory, for one minute each day after he successfully completes his reading and writing assignments. His writing has improved dramatically, and it's only been a week.  It doesn't hurt that we write out words that are meaningful and important to him like Captain Underpants, Batman, C3PO, and Hulk, On Friday he'll have earned his toy and I can't help but think back to those running shoes.

I have no clue what next week will bring, and if or when I'll buy another goal toy to "dangle the carrot" right away to keep the progress going or not.  Maybe I'll tell Jack that he and I both need to start saving our money, something tells me I owe my mom a pair of retro Nike Airs.

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