Monthly Archives: June 2010

Chocolate Chip Cookies – the rules

When you are the cookie baker in the house you get to make the rules, right? Every misshapen cookie goes to the chef. Any cookie that looks like it didn’t cook right goes to the chef. Any cookie that doesn’t fit into the cookie jar goes to the chef. Plus of course the chef needs to taste each batch that comes out of the oven, correct? I mean, it’s not like we are talking hundreds of cookies here, so why, when I just baked several dozen cookies, are there hardly any left??

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Dressing for shul

I try hard not to demand too much from the boys, especially in the summer where they are supposed to be able to chill out. However, yesterday, as they were getting ready to go to shul for maariv at the end of the fast, I insisted that my son change his shorts for long trousers. There was much eye rolling. Apparently “God doesn’t really care what you wear to shul so long as you show up”. Um. No. I believe it is inherently disrespectful to show up to a place of worship looking like you just stepped off a basketball court. The night before he had ridden his bike for an hour before maariv and I insisted he showered before going – I am apparently a very demanding mom. Seriously, to me, when you go to shul, you must show more respect than when you are just hanging out at home with your friends. It doesn’t make me a hypocrite – it’s not pretending that you are different, it’s just dressing appropriately for the occasion.

While there was eye rolling going on, his friend who was hanging out with him told him that he was going home to change before shul as his mother also doesn’t let him go to shul in shorts. Score one for the mommies.

Demanding? Or justified?

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Wednesday’s Wacky Signs

(Hat Tip AGS)

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Licensed to what? A Rant

Sometimes I wonder what would happen to this world if we all had to pass parenting exams before they allowed us to procreate. Adoption and fostering are regulated. If you are a certifiable idiot they don’t let you have the honour of adopting a child. Heck, sometimes even if you are certifiably normal they find a reason to reject you.

Case in point, and bear in mind I am tired and hungry right now and don’t really care about being politically correct. I popped in to the local 7-11 which is apparently a cool place to hang out – kosher slurpies etc… On my way thru the parking lot I noticed a mama-wagon (a van) parked with the engine running, no one in the driver’s seat. Hmm. Peered in thru the window – not one, but TWO sleeping toddlers safely buckled in their car seats. The car was unlocked – I could have just opened the door, and driven away, because the keys were in the ignition.

What the hell, woman? I understand you need to run an errand and the kids fell asleep in the car. That happened to me many a time when the kids were little. And I get that you left the air conditioning on so that they didn’t boil to death, but come on – someone could have driven away with your babies!! In the 5 minutes it took for you to drop off or pick up your dry cleaning or buy a coffee – poof, kids, gone!! How is this ok?!! I watched thru the window of the 7-11 while I was paying for my coffee. She was gone for the 4 minutes it took me to prepare and pay for my coffee. As I exited the store she sauntered up to her car, gabbing on her phone, and nonchalantly drove off, taking for granted that her kids would still be there.

Maybe I am just an old curmudgeon these days, but I wanted to severely berate her for not caring enough…..

What are your thoughts?

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Post-fast foods

It’s a fast day today (17th of Tammuz). What are you planning to break your fast on? Scrambled eggs and bagels here, and coffee.

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With knobs on!

I was driving our van today, and as soon as I arrived and put the car in Park, the gear shift knob kind of exploded. The button at the side flew out of the handle, the interior spring followed suit, and then the knob fell off in my hand. What on earth??? I tried to get it back on, got my hand covered in glue that was on the shifter where the knob had been. Not good. KoD called the car dealership where we bought it, and I bounced over there, 5 kids in tow. (Yeah, we picked up an extra one on the way). The shifter works, it just needs a little finessing to get it to the right gear.

So we sat around the dealership for the best part of an hour, only to be told by the young upstart mechanic that there was nothing wrong with the knob and he finds it in perfect working order. I felt like taking him by the scruff of his neck and shaking him. Instead I politely disagreed with him, and asked him to take me to my vehicle so I could demonstrate just how wrong he was. The dude was sooo sure of himself. Ha! I showed him how that button widget thing sticks and doesn’t pop back out after the gear is changed. “Well, it didn’t happen like that for me” he says, pouting. Why would I bother wasting an hour of my time in a waiting room with 5 boys aged 8-14 if the thing wasn’t really broken? I mean, come on!!

Totally proved the guy wrong. Made him order the part. Thankfully it is under warranty. Meanwhile we have to manage with a sticky shift…I wonder what made it explode. Its not like I bench press 300 daily and don’t know my own strength. (Ok stop laughing, it isn’t that funny!)

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WWYD – Minyan

It’s summer time and the living is easy. Well, easier than getting the kids up and off to school every day. The pace is more relaxed – life is less stressful. That being said, we never forget that we are religious Jews, and our religious practice still dictates the same things that they do in school time.

I have two boys over barmitzvah, one 9 months away from “becoming a man”. The KoD goes to shul every morning, to daven (pray) with a minyan (a quorum of ten men over the age of 13). I expect the same of my oldest two – and there is a later minyan than the 7 am one the KoD goes too. There is one at 8 am throughout the summer.

How much do I push for them to go? Shouldn’t this be something that should be their choice, or should I expect it of them and do my darndest to drag their tired selves out of bed? They can daven at home, but it is so much better to daven with a minyan.

What do you do with your teenage boys in this regard? What worked for you as a teenage observant boy? What are your thoughts?

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Monsey Tales

We survived the weekend. Intact. Well, we did, the fridge – not so much. Seven kids and two grown ups – it takes a lot to feed that many people. We went from total peace and quiet, the two of us, to us plus seven kids, within the space of 24 hours. And we are sane enough to still tell the tale. Ok, I know that’s a matter of opinion, but hey, allow me my delusions 😉 . We are now back to 4 kids and two adults – the decibel level is slightly less, but the house is still hopping.

This will be the first full week with my kids here – and they are not going to day camp. The two big boys are too old, and most of the older three’s friends have gone to sleepaway camp. Not an option for my boys. The little one would probably enjoy day camp very much – but it’s not an option this summer, either. I am starting to appreciate how cheap everything was in Montreal. School, camp etc is three times the cost here. The kids will be doing Ima camp as they have done in summers gone by. Makes for a relaxing summer, I guess. If anyone has any suggestions of stuff to do locally that won’t break the bank, that would be appreciated.

We shlepped them to Costco yesterday. Heehee. Their eyes went huge as they saw the selection and the prices and the sheer size of some of the packaging. Yeah., I can make fun, especially as I did the same thing two weeks ago when the KoD took me there for the first time. But now I am a seasoned Costco veteran so that gives me seniority.

I had better go and wake up my boys for minyan – will check in with you guys at some point…

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Dear Child,

I am so thankful to God that you have a wonderful set of working lungs and a voice box that you test out often. I know that the good Lord also gifted you with a very capable and sturdy pair of legs. Do you know, that instead of yelling for a parent from wherever you are in the house, and expecting said parent to come to you, you can actually use those legs that God gave you to go and look for the parent yourself. Instead of waking the whole house up repeatedly yelling for your mother or father. Now, if you were hurt or sick, you are absolved from moving on your own to find your parent. But if you just cannot be bothered to get off your keester to go look – tough noogies.


Me xoxo

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Small stuff? Pushover?

Here’s a question. Where do you draw the line between not sweating the small stuff and allowing people to walk all over you?

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