Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Happy Holidays... I'm fakin' it this year

I cannot seem to feel good about the holidays this year. It's sad because it truly is my favourite holiday but this year... I have little Christmas spirit.

This weekend, my granpa was told he has cancer. The found it on his liver and it isn't the main source of the cancer so that means it has spread. He's dying, plain and simple.

We all are dying, I know, but I feel like I've aged about 10 years in the last week. The weight of having to deal with a parent's imminent death is horrible.

He's my granpa, not my dad I know, but you see, we have each other and that's about it as far as family goes. I have always been close to my grandparents. Always. In fact, if it weren't for them, I would not have made it through an otherwise shitty childhood.

I don't talk to my mom and he isn't close with anyone else. He is my step-grandfather, it's complicated but he's been there since I was born so he's my granpa. Simple as that.

Anyway, because my "family" is so messed up, I have leaned on and counted on my grandparents for life lessons, strength and guidance. When my grandma died, I was only 19 years old. Her and I shared a studio bedroom apartment in Edmonton, before she died of lung cancer.

My grandfather was devastated when she died, obviously because she was the love of his life. It was then that we developed a ridiculously strong relationship based on our love and passion for hockey.

I know, right!? Weird. But we had always battled about our Oilers/Flames love/hate relationship. He's from Calgary and likes to bug me about the Oilers while I'm an Edmonton girl and love to rub it in his face about our 5 Stanley Cups. It's how we bond.

My granpa flew in from Kuwait to walk me down the aisle when I got married (did I mention he lived/worked there for 20 years? Yah, that's another blog).

When I got a job at a daily paper as a sports scribe, he flew home to make sure I was doing OK and let me know how proud he was of me.

When I had Oscar, he came home to meet him. Oz is named after Big Daddy's granpa but his middle name is my grandfather's.

I haven't seen my granpa as much as I should have in the past couple of years... life gets in the way. But I always think about him.

I was at the hospital this afternoon and the doctor told me I should find out what his "code status" is in case it's needed.

Do you know what a code status is? It's a DNR - Do Not Resuscitate. So you either are a thumbs up or a thumbs down.

How the hell do I approach that? I don't like asking these questions and I sure as shit don't want to talk about him dying. He's depressed enough.

So I said, "Granpa, I have to ask you a question."

"Ok, dear."

"Uhm, well, you know if you go flatline, do you want the doctors to try and save you?"

Fuck. Tactful as all hell, aren't I?

He just looked away and said, "Well at that point I won't care, now will I?"

Then he started talking about the Oilers. Because he's scared of dying, I'm sure. When I'm talking to him, I maintain a pretty calm, cool and witty composure because I don't want to stress him out.

But he started talking about his will and personal papers and things I just don't want to hear about. Ignorance is bliss, right? If I don't know then it's not real.

I had to leave. I couldn't sit there and discuss it with him. It's too painful.

So I left but he called me as I was driving home and asked me to bring him a notepad. That there were some things he wanted to get on paper.

So, here I sit. Blogging instead of getting in the truck and driving. I'm stalling because I just don't want to go back today.

I am truly struggling with how to put on a chipper facade for my kids over the next few days. I guess I just have to focus on the moment with them this Christmas and block everything else out.

Think I'll look up one of the Cocktail Deeva's recipes and fix me a pitcher of somethin' for when I get home. There's sure to be some holiday joy in there!! ;)



Friday, December 18, 2009

Love for the Twits

If you're on Twitter, you know all about the #ff or Follow Fridays. It's how you high-five your fellow twits and build your community of followers. I personally like to call them Twits because followers makes it sound like I'm some sort of cult leader ... plus I don't believe anyone should "follow" someone. Always be a leader!

Ahem. I digress.

Today, I have decided to steal the idea of @InspiredCoach of blogging my Top 5 Twits of the week. She mentioned me last week because I'm so damn awesome, and this week, I reciprocate to her because she friggin' ROCKS!! Add her to your Twitter community.

#5: @Optimom She gets it!! She preaches and teaches the value of putting yourself FIRST, above the kids, above the hubby, above everyone because you can't take care of anyone if you are struggling to take care of yourself. Personally, I think she stole this idea from me because, you know, that's how she rolls... she mischievous that way. And she says stuff like "Sweet Niblets!" when she really means "Ass Hat."

#4 @TassimoCanada If you love coffee,, you NEED to have this coffee brewing system. FYI MOM is giving one away next week so be sure to enter our contest!! I blog about coffee. I tweet about coffee. No one loves coffee more than I do, and finding this coffee system was like finding Big Daddy. Except I never thought my love affair with the Tassimo would be just a one-night thing, where as Big Daddy was suppose to be. 11 years later I figure Big Daddy might just be a permanent fixture. But I still have a love affair with my Tassimo. So there.

#3 @TBSonK97 The K-Rock morning show is raunchy. And according to the Terry, Bill and Steve show on K97, MOM is worse than they are. *blush* we're honoured that they would give us such a compliment. We love Terry, Bill & Steve. They make us laugh, they make us cringe and they make us feel pretty damn good about ourselves because we know we could never, ever be as badass as they are. HA! I wrote that with a straight face!!

#2 @SalesDiva For all you FIERCE women in business, you need to know Kim Duke. She will give you the tools you need to take your business to the next level. She's the sassy sales diva who gives you tips, points you in the direction of the experts, sends you newsletters full of useful information and gives you the kick in the ass you need!

#1 @BigDaddySaid well who else did you think would be #1 in my world?? Big Daddy is funny. And brilliant. And only smart people get his sense of humour. If you like to be entertained and engage in witty, intelligent banter, I highly recommend him. And if you prefer the opposite, feel free to follow me.



Thursday, December 17, 2009

Tasteless... or so we've been called

Yup, people luuuurve to bitch about us.

And this time it seems we've offended a Stony Plain pastor.

There was a message at our office to call him so he could tell me why he thinks the magazine is "in poor taste."

Promptly following that little gem was a message from the Spruce Grove Second Cup owner asking me not to leave magazines there anymore due to "complaints" from customers.

Coincidence? I think not.

At first, I just shook my head and brushed off the messages because I can't waste time addressing complaints that have no merit. People complain all the time about the magazine but unless it's constructive criticism, I tend to ignore it.

And then I thought about it and got pissed off.

What the hell, doode!? I thought religious people weren't suppose to judge... lest ye be judged and all that.

I really thought this was a pretty tame issue. Sure, we like to raise some eyebrows but we never intend to offend anyone with our content.

I almost decided to call him back but realized there would be nothing I could say to appease him or Second Cup. MOM is what it is - edgy, fun, brash and sassy. We dare to go where no "mommy magazine" has dared to go before.

Our content has been shocking people since we launched and there is really nothing that shocking about what's between our covers.

If your mind goes to the gutter, that's your issue, not ours.

If you get your thong in a knot because we swear, too damn bad, because I'm going to keep doing it.

If you can't take the heat then stay outta my motherlovin' kitchen!

Or feel free to keep pickin' us up so you can bitch about us.

Hey, at least I know you're reading it.

And don't worry, I know there's a special place for me and my badass attitude. It's right there along with the 1,000s of readers we have and an open bar.

Now go and be one with your self-righteousness.


Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Dear Diary, I'm not gonna bitch about the weather I've got other things on my mind...

Edmonton is in a cold snap - Friday, we were the coldest place in North America and the 2nd coldest place in the world, trailing Siberia...

Yes it's cold. Quit your damn bitchin' already.

It has been a hell of a month.

Hell being the operative word.

I plan too much and since there is only one of me, I burn out. It happens. Magazine planning, production, design, sales, writing, art direction with the photo shoots, the trip to Ottawa, working on the website, updating the Facebook group, designing media kits and sponsorship packages for the Shopping Soiree, planning the Shopping Soiree, working an 11-hour day of the event, distribution of the magazine...

And the cycle continues.

Granted I won't be going to Ottawa next month but there is always something going on ... like out FIERCE Women of the Year inaugural gala in April. Event planning, finding sponsors, putting it all together...

Fuck. WHY do I do this??

Really? I'm asking you. Because I'm at the end of a rapidly fraying rope and ready to hang myself with whatever is left.

My grandfather is in the hospital. I took him there last week, the Sunday after I got back from Ottawa.

He is so weak and ill. He is 6'2 and weighs 138 pounds. He has wasted away to skin and bones, suffers from Osteo-arthritis, can barely move and is in constant pain.

He is literally the only family member I am close to. Him and my grandma were the only one who has always been there for me. My grandma dies 15 years ago and my granpa has never recovered. He misses her terribly.

I was suppose to be out distributing the magazines today but I got a call from my granpa asking me to come to the hospital.

"Are you OK?" I asked.


When your frail, old grandfather calls you from the hospital to ask you to come and see him, you go.

Magazine, be dammed.

My grandfather needed me and I went.

I brought him hot chocolate and sat with him for a couple of hours. He's a fighter - ornery, stubborn, independent... but I think he realizes that he needs assistance and that has hurt his ego.

I'm worried about him. I hate seeing him so weak. It breaks my heart. And I'm heartless to begin with so for me to even open myself up like this is a big deal... to me, anyway.

I have so many ideas and plans for MOM but I feel so ripped apart from stress and fatigue. I'm emotionally drained and really tired. And all for what?

Because I still think MOM needs to be out there. The message that "Life as a MOM doesn't mean life as a WOMAN has to end" is needed by you. Or, at least that's what I think.

To quote the egocentric Charles Barkley, I may be wrong but I doubt it.

Pick up the latest issue and let me know what you think. Oh, and be sure to check out our newest MOM blogger, Sharp-tongued MOM ... she's feisty, snarky and will make you pee your pants laughing. And then she'll make you recycle something because she's weird that way.

Stay warm... and find something else to bitch about because if the weather is your biggest complaint in life, you've got it pretty damn good.


Thursday, November 26, 2009

Christmas time... is near!

Holy jingle bells, batman!

It was pointed out to me by a fellow twit that this time next month, Christmas will have come and gone.

WTF?! I'm SO not ready this year!!! I missed the Festival of Trees (except for Lola's school performance), my tree isn't up and there are still pumpkins sitting in my kitchen.

To top it off, I'm leaving for Ottawa on Monday to shoot our next's top secret so don't tell anyone. But in order to take that trip, I've got a to-do list a mile long and a laundry pile as big as the Rockies.

It's really tough to get into the spirit this year, don't you think? There's no real snow! I'm bar-b-queing our suppers almost every night because my gawddamn oven is broken and I feel too overwhelmed with everything else that's going on to slow down and get into the season.

Maybe this trip to Ottawa will help? I'm excited to meet some of the fabulous women I've chatted with on Twitter (if you're not following me on Twitter, you should be because I'm friggin hilarious!) Anyway, I've met some really cool girls! @kellidaisy @CLBuchananPhoto @BPOrleans @YummyMummyClub @amotherworld @PartyMummy @SharonDV @CocktailDeeva @KathyBuckworth @optimom@CandaceDX ... there are so many and I'm sure I'm forgetting someone. Anyway, I'm going to meet with a few of them whilst in Ottawa so it should be good times!

It will still be all work, though. I'll keep you posted on why and what I'm doing.

As for my house, well... I'll wave my magic wand and it shall be done! For now, I'm listening to the Charlie Brown Christmas CD... always the perfect way to get into the spirit!!

Let me know how you're getting into the spirit of the season!


Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Oscar's Lunch... no ketchup sandwiches here!

There is a reason I put a lot of effort into packing my kid's lunch for school.

Back in the day, my brother and I would would go to the neighbour's house for lunch. This neighbour was a very good friend of my mom's and quite nice, actually, but the only thing she made us for lunch was ketchup sandwiches. Now, I don't know if it was a money thing or because she didn't like us, but that's my memory of school lunches.

So, every morning since Oz has been going to school, I pack his lunch with fruit, a snack bag of veggies, a sandwich and a treat. I put a lot of love and thought into those lunches, and I don't expect any special awards for making them.

But he will never have to experience a ketchup sandwich and therefore doesn't appreciate how important it is to me that he have a decent lunch.

It's weird because I will never be "that mom" who sends cupcakes to school or volunteers for field trips (I don't like kids in general so groups of them causes me great stress and an additional prozac).

But this school lunch thing is where I shine as the Betty Crocker mom.

Which brings me to another piss-off - the Hot Lunch program.

How is having Hot Lunches from McDonalds or Wendys teaching kids about healthy eating and nutrition?

I'm not saying I never take the kids there, because I have enough McDs bags in my truck that would tell you otherwise, but I expect more from a hot lunch program in the schools. Granted, Spruce Grove and Stony Plain are fairly small so the options are limited but come ON!

OK, enough ranting for this morning, I've got real work to do and another coffee to drink.

Happy humpday!


Sunday, November 22, 2009

Just another day in the dungeon

I promised myself I would take the weekend off. I swore I would.

But I can't. I simply have lost the ability to relax away from work. I think I may have a problem.

You see, there was a time when I would schedule time for myself - gym, spa, tanning, whatever. As long as it meant time for me to improve my overall image and health. Over the last two and half years, I've lost the ability to do that.

I preach "self-care" to you in every issue but I have failed to take my own advice. I believe my extreme Scorpio personality has overtaken my desire to get off my ass and do something other than work.

And lately, I've seen pictures of myself and I cringe. I think, "Why are people taking pictures of my MOM!??" Because I look like her. Blech.

If I don't start doing things differently, I will never get control of myself. Scheduling a workout and STICKING TO IT may be my only saving grace. I won't give up wine or coffee, because those are my two favourite things to indulge in, plus I don't eat sweets or over-indulge in junk food. I've just become LAZY.

So, it's time to move my fat ass off of this office chair and take my life - and my health - seriously.

I look at the treadmill every damn day - it's in the dungeon, taunting me with it's incline. My excuse? Too much to do, too much to get done, too much planning to do, I'm not even wearing running shoes for Gawdsakes!

Well, NO MORE EXCUSES!!! In the mornings, I am going to get "dressed to the shoes" (a little tip I picked up from the Flylady).

I will go on the treadmill, whether I want to or not. I will sweat. I will huff and puff. But I WILL SUCCEED!!! I did it before and this time, it's for GOOD!!


I'm tired of being unwilling to have my picture taken or seeing myself in pictures and being ashamed.

So, MOM readers, I plan to make my 35th year on this earth the year I take my life back!!

Are you WITH ME!?!

As always, your Mad Publisher,

Friday, November 20, 2009

I blame Maria aka @amotherworld for making me do this.

I realize that it's now Friday... where the heck did the week go? Since it’s TGIFF – Thank God it’s F*cking Friday and everyone is seriously slacking today, let’s have some fun!

1. Name someone with the same birthday as you. Funnies Garry Shandling and Howie Mandel.

2. Where was your first kiss? On a warm summer night in the middle of the street.

3. Have you ever seriously vandalized someone else’s property? Does toilet-papering an old
boyfriend’s house count?

4. Have you ever hit someone of the opposite sex? A few shots to the head never hurt nobody.

5. Have you ever sung in front of a large number of people? Didn't you know? I am secretly a rock singer by night.

6. What’s the first thing you notice about your preferred sex? The eyes – the windows of the soul.

7. What really turns you off? People who are fake.

8. What do you order at Starbucks? Double Shot Non-Fat Lactaid Latte. Now say that three times.

9. What is your biggest mistake? I turned down certain opportunities.

10. Have you ever hurt yourself on purpose? I like to carve designs in my skin in my spare time. And I enjoy pulling out my hair on occasion.

11. Say something totally random about yourself. I’d love to go back to school.

12. Has anyone ever said you looked like a celebrity? Yeah, a few people have said I look like Maria Shriver which I wasn’t so thrilled about… does my chin look like hers? Seriously!

13. Do you still watch kiddie movies or TV shows? I absolutely adore the Backyardians. And the new guy on Wiggles.

14. Did you have braces? Nope but I probably should have!

15. Are you comfortable with your height? I’m happy being 5’7” but a couple more inches without heels would be cool.

16. What is the most romantic thing someone of the preferred sex has done for you? Romance? What's that? I only know from books ;)

17. When do you know its love? When it just feels right.

18. Do you speak any other languages? I speak Greek. I used to speak French and Spanish fairly well.

19. Have you ever been to a tanning salon? I used to… I’d pretend I was in the Bahamas, on a nude beach or something.

20. What magazines do you read? Elle, Canadian Living, Homemakers, InStyle

21. Have you ever ridden in a limo? They are overrated but yes.

22. Has anyone you were really close to passed away? Sadly my grandparents have all passed, a few of my dear uncles and an amazing cousing.

23. Do you watch MTV? GAC – Guilty As Charged.

24. What’s something that really annoys you? People who gossip maliciously.

25. What’s something you really like? The amazing smell of coffee, first thing in the morning.

26. Do you like Michael Jackson? How else would I have learned to do the moonwalk?

27. Can you dance? I love to dance, I think I can bust a few cool moves. Give me the chance and I can shake this Greek ass!

28. What’s the latest you have ever stayed up? In my younger days, I could stay up all night. Now I’m lucky if I can stay up past 1am.

29. Have you ever been rushed by an ambulance into the emergency room? No, bite your tongue! Ftou ftou don’t give me the evil eye.

30. Do you actually read these when other people fill them out? I sure do!

31. Tag 5 people!

(FYI: In case you’ve never done a MEME, just remember to link the person that tagged you, answer the same questions, and then tag five people to do the same. Have fun!)

Stoopid MEME quiz.

I blame Maria aka @amotherworld for making me do this. But WTF, enjoy. You might learn something.

1. Name someone with the same birthday as you. Mackenzie Phillips. Fuck. Really??

2. Where was your first kiss? In front of my house. Eddie Gallagher, we were both 6 yo and he ran away after.

3. Have you ever seriously vandalized someone else’s property? No, there are enough criminals in my family, thank you very much.

4. Have you ever hit someone of the opposite sex? Big Daddy has been known to take a few but that's called foreplay in our house.

5. Have you ever sung in front of a large number of people? Yes, I cleared out a karaoke bar in the Domincan Republic singing Hound Dog to Big Daddy on our honeymoon. True story.

6. What’s the first thing you notice about your preferred sex? Eyes.

7. What really turns you off? Not having any wine.Or coffee. And pretentious people.

8. What do you order at Starbucks? Cinnamon Dolce Latte.

9. What is your biggest mistake? There are no mistakes, only lessons and experiences.

10. Have you ever hurt yourself on purpose? Yes, every night when I drink wine, my liver dies just a little bit more.

11. Say something totally random about yourself. I don't trust many people and therefore my "friends" are far and few between.

12. Has anyone ever said you looked like a celebrity? Angelina Jolie. If she were blonde. And chunky. And had blue eyes.

13. Do you still watch kiddie movies or TV shows? Fuck no. Unless Family Guy counts because that's a cartoon, so...

14. Did you have braces? Funny you should as because YES, just had them removed a year ago. And not because my teeth were crooked either, I had 2 baby teeth that had to be removed. I think that's when my drinking problem started because I was teething at the same time as my daughter and it hurt like a motherfucker.

15. Are you comfortable with your height? Sure! Mentally, I'm 6'6 so it matches my larger-than-life personality.

16. What is the most romantic thing someone of the preferred sex has done for you? Romance is for girls. I am not a girl. In that way.

17. When do you know its love? When he buys you dinner first.

18. Do you speak any other languages? I speak Jackass, simply because most everyone I meet speaks that language so it's important for me to be able to understand them.

19. Have you ever been to a tanning salon? All. The. Time.

20. What magazines do you read? MOM Magazine.

21. Have you ever ridden in a limo? Yup.

22. Has anyone you were really close to passed away? Someone I was in love with died suddenly when I was 21. My grandma died almost 15 years ago.

23. Do you watch MTV? No.

24. What’s something that really annoys you? People who claim to be all spiritual but are really full of shit.

25. What’s something you really like? Work. Really. I love what I do.

26. Do you like Michael Jackson? Learned all my best moves from him!

27. Can you dance? Uhm yah. Better than you, probably.

28. What’s the latest you have ever stayed up? Prior to kids, all night. Now, 10 pm.

29. Have you ever been rushed by an ambulance into the emergency room? No, I drag my sorry ass in there.

30. Do you actually read these when other people fill them out? Depends on whether or not I like the person.

31. Tag 5 people!

(FYI: In case you’ve never done a MEME, just remember to link the person that tagged you, answer the same questions, and then tag five people to do the same. Have fun!)

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Edmonton's Notorious Cromdale slated for demolition

That was the Edmonton Journal headline I read as I was trying to fall asleep tonight. Yes, I keep my BB with me at all times, even in bed, and I find that reading the news is a great way to fall asleep.

I can't even begin to tell you how many conflicted emotions I have about the Cromdale Hotel.

Most of my childhood memories involve that rat trap in one way or another.

We lived in a house directly behind the Cromdale when I was about four years old. My mom worked there as a waitress and it was at the Cromdale where she met the man who would be instrumental in making the rest of my childhood something I'd rather forget and have had to bury in order to survive. He is the reason my adult life has been filled with nightmares, anger and hate.

Good ol' Cromdale.

I remember sleeping in the car outside the Cromdale, waiting for him & my mom to finish drinking.

When we were old enough to be left at home, 7-8 years old, I remember phoning the Cromdale and paging my mom only to be told by the person on the other end that they didn't page anyone. Even at that age, I remember being cocky and pulling attitude with whoever answered the phone, saying, "Listen, let me talk to Mike or Stan (the owners at the time) because he knows my mom!"

Sometimes, she would call me back. Most times, she didn't.

There is not one year of the 15 years I lived at home that didn't involve that place in one way or another.

Walking to Klondike Days, we would have to walk right by the Cromdale to get to the grounds. I remember thinking that if we could just get past that block, we'd be OK. Even taking the bus to school was frustrating because anytime the bus stopped in front of the Cromdale, I always wondered which scumbag would get on.

The number of times my mom came home from that bar, bruised, bloody and battered are too many to count.

My mom left her soul in that place, I'm sure of it.

The Cromdale was always there, attracting the lowest of the low: hookers, strippers, drug dealers, low life criminals. If you wanted to get into that life, the Cromdale was the place to network.

I've been in the lobby, I actually had a drink for my 18th birthday with my mom, sort of a "bonding moment" for us. When I came home from college on the weekends, if I ever wanted to find my mom, I would stop in at the Cromdale to look for her.

I always felt like I was better than every single person in that place. Like I couldn't be bothered to make eye contact with them or associate with them because I was never going to be like them.

It was a filthy place. I hated it. And yet I have mixed emotions about it being demolished. I mean, it needs to go, that community will never achieve the goals they have if that building stays, even if it has been condemned since 2004.

But for me, the Cromdale makes the demons of my past real. It is a landmark that will always be in my memories. It is something tangible to associate all of the bad stuff with.

Maybe demolishing it will help me release those demons, I don't know. But I can still see the inside of that bar. I can still see my mom sitting in a booth, not much older than I am now. She was 36 when I turned 18, so, yah.


The mere mention of that place has dredged up all of these feelings.

I couldn't even relax enough to sleep, I needed to get this off my chest... release it to the universe.

I hate what the Cromdale stood for and now, it will stand no more.

But the demons that place have created for me, will live on forever. Or until I can afford a damn good therapist!


The community remember and the community that is now, 2009, are completely different.

Since I couldn't sleep, I did a little bit of research about the Cromdale and found this organization, CRUD (Community Response to Urban Disorder).

They are a group of people who are making changes and taking back the community from the drug dealers and prostitutes. I can only hope that they continue to be the voice of the people who live in that community because, for the most part, they are good people.

Check them out at

As for me, I feel like this could very well be a huge step in my healing process. Because as deep as I bury those demons, they're still there. They need to be demolished, too.


Tuesday, November 10, 2009

It's over...

Ok, so I've officially entered my mid-30s.



I don't feel any different or look any different.

I've never panicked EVER about my birthday so yesterday was truly unusual for me. When I turned 30, I embraced it knowing that I was confident in myself and knew myself better than I did when I was 20.

I didn't phase me. Not. One. Bit.

But 35... wow. If it weren't for my Twitter friends I may have literally crawled under the covers and stayed there for the entire day.

But they were encouraging and positive, so that helped me see the light!

35 isn't old. What the hell was I thinking?? I can look at this as a fresh start for myself! A time to renew my mind, body and spirit! Turning 35 can be my very own "New Year," my BEST year!

So thank you to all of my Twitter friends, you know who you are!

Cheers! To another year!!


Monday, November 9, 2009

Good by early 30s...

Today is officially my last day as a 34-year-old.

I don't even know why it matters to me, I've never looked at my birthday that way before but for some reason turning 35 seems to bring with it a whole new mentality. Maybe it's time for me to be mature, settle down and focus on what is important in life.

By "settle down" I mean put aside my childish mentality, my selfish "Me, ME, ME!!!" way of thinking and start thinking about how my actions affect those around me.

35 sounds old. It sounds like an age where you should be secure in your life and have a wonderful daily routine. It sounds like an age where my house should look a certain way and have a certain feel. Our house feels cluttered and blah. We've never had an interior designer help us and it certainly isn't "mature" the way it feels when I visit my friend's homes.

If I'm lucky enough to live to be 70 this means I'm HALFWAY THROUGH MY LIFE!


That's a lot of living to pack into another 35 years. And yet this first 35 have gone by so quickly.

Is this my midlife crisis?? Is there a hot young gardener in my future? BAH! I have a hard enough time with Big Daddy I couldn't imagine having to worry about keeping a hot young stud on the side.

But seriously, I feel like I have ONE LAST DAY to get my shit together and grow up.

I just looked around the dungeon and realized it's gonna take a whole lot more than one day to clean this place up. Or change my life.

I guess it starts with this one day.

My final day in my early 30s. From here on in, I'll be in my mid-30s. If I died tomorrow, Lynda Steele would be reading from her anchor desk at Global TV saying, "A woman in her mid-thirties was killed today after falling into a wood chipper. Her husband claims to have found her that way."

Fuck. Me.

Mid-thirties sounds like I should be much more polished and mature than I am.

I don't know, people... Maybe I should just embrace the A5-35 rub and roll with it.

I'll let you know how it goes.


Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Dear Santa,
I have been a bad girl this year. I haven’t been able to get out to see all of our
advertisers this year so if you could do me a HUGE favour and bring them something extra special, I would be forever in your debt.

Thanks in advance!

Tamara Plant
Publisher, MOM Magazine

Dear Tamara,
You’re right, you have been a bad girl! But I see here the biggest reason you’re on the naughty list is that you have failed to do any laundry, make supper or clean your house. Shame on you. So, my answer to your request to thank your advertisers is a big no!! Get your act together before my big night or all of the advertisers will get a big lump of coal with your name on it!

Tsk, tsk, tsk.


Hey you fat bastard!
I already know that I have been slacking off around my house and I do NOT need you to point it out. If you can’t do this one damn favour then screw you!

PS I thought fat people were suppose to be jolly!

Hey! You’re one to talk, chubby! Big Daddy and I have been communicating so I know all of your dirty little secrets... do you really want to start this battle? Apologize or that lump of coal goes to every one of your advertisers!!


OMG I am SO sorry!!! You’re right. Especially if you know about that time I... um, well, you know! So... yah. Um. This is awkward. I’m sorry. Can you ever forgive me? I really need to do something special for our advertisers because without them, there is no MOM magazine!!! Please reconsider. I promise to be better next year. P.S. Big Daddy is one to talk...

That’s more like it. I will try to let your advertisers know how much you appreciate them. p.s. Big Daddy deserves a raise. He’s funny!

Friday, October 23, 2009

Not Criminally Responsible law is really starting to PISS ME OFF!

It's no secret that I have been supportive of Tim's Law and Carol deDelley's fight to change the NCR law.

I have kept the story of Tim McLean's brutal murder front and centre in the magazine and online for a reason. The Not Criminally Responsible law has GOT TO CHANGE!!

This law first came to my attention - and the attention of most Canadians - after Tim was beheaded, cannibalized, had his body ripped apart in front of multiple Greyhound bus passengers while the RCMP stood by and did nothing. It was a "Preservation of Life" policy that prevented them from doing anything and since Tim was already dead, they couldn't very well storm the bus and kill Li.

So, Li was eventually found Not Criminally Responsible, which means no one is responsible for Tim's murder.

And now, in the news is the story of the BC father - and I use that term loosely - who murdered his three kids while they slept. He wrote the words "Forever Young" and "Gone to Neverland" in soy sauce as a message to their mother.

Well that same goddamn NCR punishment is being thrown around.

630 Ched reported: He told the court that the girl fought back, putting her hand up and crying out "I'm sorry, Daddy, I'm sorry," and then pulled his hair as he slashed her neck.

"I told her to go to the white father," he testified.

Now, I'm not a lawyer, I'm not a psychologist but I am a mom and I swear to GOD if anyone did that to my kids there is no way in hell I would want that NCR verdict passed.

NCR is bullshit. SOMEONE is responsible for murdering those kids. If not their dad - who admitted to killing them - then WHO!?

Carol's fight to change this law has seemed to have stalled, not for her lack of trying but for lack of anger and empathy by the general public.

When Tim was murdered, the story was heard around the world. People from all over the globe were sending messages of support, starting Facebook groups, they were outraged!!

And now? Well, the petition for Tim's Law has stalled at 800+ signatures.

Why? What are YOU waiting for? Are you waiting for some crazy fucker to come and do to your kids what they have done to Carol's and to Darcie Clark, the mother of those slain children?

Get pissed off! Help Carol make the change that NEEDS to be made to the Not Criminally Responsible law.

It's a bullshit law and you know it.


Saturday, October 10, 2009

Thanksgiving Weekend?

When did it get to be turkey weekend??

Holy shitballs, I've blinked and summer is over, winter is here!! Ok, so I saw a couple of the bloggers say wonderful things about what they are thankful for so.... never one to re-invent the wheel, I decided to post my own TGIF list (Thanks Given In lieu of Flowers). Don't judge, I just made it up.

Okie dokie so here goes...

To all of you who continue to read/advertise in MOM Magazine, THANK YOU!

However, to all of you who have nothing better to do than bitch about our grammatical errors, potty-mouth content, and Big Daddy ... well THANK YOU for continuing to pick us up, even if it is only to bitch

Among those whom I would like to personally thank is my new assistant Christine for keeping me organized and picking up the slack!

No one is happier about our expansion into Calgary than I am!

Kraft Dinner. The supper I am most thankful for because my kids will eat it!

Shiraz. Merlot. Reisling. Zin. Chardonnay. I think you get the point!!

Gee, I have to mention coffee, too, because without coffee, I would be one bitchy girl. Ok, even bitchier than I am normally.

In the spirit of the season, I guess I should mention the in-laws (even though I SWORE I'd never mention the old folks again!!) but I am lucky to have them because they take the kids whenever we need them. And that... is truly a blessing!!

Very big cups. In which to put my coffee. Fragment. Sentence. Get over it. I'm not perfect and neither is the mag.

I hate Facebook because it has become a toxic breeding ground for catty bullshit. In it's place I have discovered Because we do. Follow me there and don't ask to be my friend on Facebook. I am greatful for the Twit.

Namaste. Ommmmm. If you're not within you're without. Don't you dare tell anyone that I'm into that stuff!!

Grenache Shiraz. Coffee. My kids. Big Daddy (with all his faults, I love him still) *i think I just threw up in my mouth*

Now go be one with your turkey.

And have a WONDERFUL Thanksgiving!!


Thursday, October 1, 2009

The last time I was this late, I was pregnant.

And I was just as unhappy.

This anniversary issue of MOM will be available on Tuesday - yes, I know, you've been waiting and waiting... due to circumstances beyond our control we're late.

It happens.

Friday, August 28, 2009

Back-to-School Blues

Yes, yes, it's the most wonderful time of the year and all but holy HELL is it stressful. The Oz man starts Grade 2 this year and Lola will be rockin' the Pre-K so you think I'd be chompin' at the bit to get rid of the little monsters.

Well I am and I'm not.

For anyone who knows me personally, they know how disorganized I am. I forget to fill out forms, I was suppose to register Lola for dance classes, I haven't even thought about what to pack for lunch yet, there's a mountain of laundry that just WON'T go away even though I ask my fairy godmother every night to make it disappear, my house is a mess, I'm SO behind on this issue because I've been so damn sick PLUS I just don't give a damn.

I feel about as overwhelmed as I have ever felt. So trying to organize 2 kids for back-to-school is not something I am enjoying.

Am I the only mom who actually has to schedule a shower for the day??

If I don't do this, I don't shower. If I don't schedule coffee breaks, I don't take one. If I don't block off an hour for housework, I don't do it.

Sunuvabitchballs I need to be ORGANIZED!!

So many hokey "New Years Resolutions" are pumped up in January but I say Back-to-School is the start of my new year.

I'm goin' to Staples and buying a family planner so that I can structure our days. I did this last year and it worked out really well... I don't know why I stopped??

Anyhoo, this chaos sucks. If I feel this stressed I can't imagine how the Oz man must feel about starting Grade 2. It's like getting a promotion every year - you may know some of the people, most will be new and you have to adjust into a routine.

Bah. When did parenting get so hard????

If you need me I'll be pushing that "Easy" button till my laundry goes away.


Saturday, August 22, 2009

Releasing the Lockerbie Bomber

About six years ago, Big Daddy and I took Oz on his first big trip. We went to visit our friends in Scotland for two weeks, and it was such a beautiful country that I tried persuading the Big guy to relocate. It didn't happen.

Our friends, Jane and Gary, lived in Dumfries, 20 minutes away from Lockerbie, the town over which Pan American Flight 103 exploded killing 259 people on board and 11 people in town. Jane, a RN, remembered the event, telling me they rushed to the scene to help. She described the chaos, the panic, the terror, the blood, the sadness and the horror.

I hadn't heard of this tragedy - it happened in 1988 when I was in Grade 8 and was too wrapped up in my own personal drama to care about what was happening in the world - but when Jane told me about the memorial dedicated to the people who were killed, I knew I had to pay my respects at the site.

It wasn't something we expected to see on our vacation to Scotland and I'm sure Big Daddy only went because I insisted but this was the most memorable part of my trip to Scotland.

The gravestones were imposing and impressive. The view was breathtaking and serene. The air was thick with energy and spirituality, and I was drawn to the memorial knowing I had to pay my respects.

I read the names of each person who was killed on board that flight and on the ground in the small town of Lockerbie. It truly was a place I was meant to see and now, six years later, I know why.

The only person who was convicted of blowing up Pan American Flight 103 was released yesterday on "compassionate grounds" because he has cancer.

Boo fucking hoo.

Abdel Baset al-Megrahi recieved a hero's welcome when he returned to Libya and was hugged by Moammar Gadhafi, who released this statement:

"To my friends in Scotland; the Scottish National Party, and Scottish Prime Minister, and the Foreign Secretary, I praise their courage for having proved their independence in decision making, despite the unacceptable and unreasonable pressures they faced. Nevertheless, they took this courageously right and humanitarian decision," he said.

Right and Humanitarian decision? I'm sure it was the right and humanitarian decision that was made when that bomb was placed in the cargo area of Pan Am Flight 103.

I'm sure it was compassion that fueled the decision to murder those people.

My blood boils at the thought of this dirty fucker being hailed a hero by people in Libya. There were young men who threw flower petals at his feet and praised him.

This was a bullshit decision by the Scottish government. Yes, bullshit. There have been rumblings that it is an oil-based decision to release the cancer-ridden al-Megrahi. The government denies it and I could care less what the motivation is behind his release.
WTF is wrong with people? Did the Scottish governement not see this coming? Anyone with any common sense knew what would happen. So what? The guy has prostate cancer? Hmmm... who the fuck cares? It's a slow painful death he deserves after what he did, not a comfy bed and hugs from a vicious Libyan leader.

I'm sitting here listening to my 3-year-old princess Lola play with her dolls and sing, "You have to believe you can fly!" She is so innocent and sweet that if someone ever hurt her - in any way, shape or form - I wouldn't be as forgiving as the Scottish government.

I can only imagine how the parents of the victims of Pan Am 103 feel.

Sunday, July 26, 2009

Dear Diary: Cankle lipo? Are you freakin' KIDDING ME!

I know I suffer from the same basic insecurities as the next mom but the thought of getting any cosmetic procedures has never really been on the top of my priority list.

Yes, I got a boob reduction but I really did have back issues (although I was more than happy with having my boobs put back where they belong) and yes, I had lasik eye surgery but that was only after I had to get braces but that was due to having gone into the dentist with a full set of teeth only to leave TOOTHLESS because he saw that I had 2 baby teeth (it was my first trip to the dentist in 14 years, how could I know?)

Anyway, I'm talking more mainstream cosmetic treatments like permanent makeup or botox or lipo. Not my thing but that's my opinion (for now).

Anyhoo, I normally don't care if someone wants to get a treatment done. Who am I to judge? However when I got this press release I shook my head and wondered if I'd had one too many glasses of wine before reading this.
This press release is real - seriously.
Cosmetic Surgery Procedures, from Cankle Lipo to Pec Implants
Hi Tamara,

These days cosmetic surgery can be used to enhance almost any part of the body, I'd like to offer you top cosmetic surgeon to comment on the newest procedures their patients are requesting, leaving tummy tucks in the dust!
Toe Facelift: Patients are having toe fat removed in their big toe or adding fat to the balls of their feet to help them endure block after block in Jimmy Choo! Also surgical shortening of the second toe, prevents long second toes from hanging over the edge of an open-toe
Belly-button Modification: Ever wished you could turn your outtie into an innie? With unbilicoplasty, you can! Depending on how your umbilical cord was severed when you were born, you can have your ideal belly button in no time.

Cankle Lipo: If you've ever seen thick ankles that look like a continuation of calves, you know what a "cankle" is. Some women are genetically predisposed to have more leg and ankle fat, and fatty deposits in the ankles are among the most resistant to diet and exercise. Doctors can now use liposuction to sculpt a more shapely transition from calf to foot.

Pec Implants: Pectoral implants for men, while still a niche procedure, were up 203% between 2007 and 2008. When weightlifting and exercise don't produce results, some men compensate with boob jobs for boys.

If you'd like to set up an interview please let me know, I can set it up today!

Wow. Is this what women have been reduced to?
I'm surprised but not really. How pathetic is it that cosmetic surgeons have to constantly come up with new things for women to feel bad about?
Surgeon: "Wow, are you really happy with your fat feet? Honestly, how do you expect anyone to love you if your feet look like Cinderella's ugly, fat step-sister Anastasia and Drizella? Oh honey, Prince Charming will never find you with a glass slipper!"
You: "Well, gee, I never thought about it until now but I guess you're right!"
Me: "What a gawddamn jackass you are with your waxed eyebrows, ass implants and shiny face!! You can suck my fat toe!"
Or something like that.
The point is, I see so many women (myself included) who can't seem to love themselves at this moment. I'm not 21, nor would I ever want to be 21 again. Was I hot? I think so but at the time I felt fat, unattractive and plain. When I look back at those pictures I think, "DAMN! I was smokin' hot! Whatta sexy bitch!"
So maybe I'm not perfect now, but I am learning to accept that I do not have to wait to be society's ideal of what is "beautiful" because I'm pretty damn awesome the way I am right now.
Cankle lipo? Toe lifts? Belly-button modification? Pec implants?
What next? A real Stepford Wife clinic?
I only hope Lola, my 3-year-old daughter, is smarter than to get sucked in by all of this Top Model bullshit. But it will take change. And change starts with you and with me. I, for one, won't let the fashion/beauty/hair industry dictate to me how I should look and feel.
And neither should you. Be able to think for yourself and be strong enough not to get sucked into feeling like you're not good enough because someone else says so.
You're not that weak. And if you are, then toughen up buttercup because you're teaching a whole new generation of girls to be weak, too.

Friday, July 24, 2009

Dear Diary: Where did our mags go?

I've gotten more than a few emails about the July Aug issue not being at the spots listed on our website. So, I called up our girl Christina and said, "Whaddup!?"

Or something like that.

She has distributed the majority of the magazines so if you go to a location and find none, it means they've all been picked up!!

Wow! Who knew we were so popular!

That's great news, though and I'm not complaining. Just pleased as puddin' that our readers are so loyal!

On that note...

Press time is looming for the next issue! Already!

Prepping for an issue is a LOT of work but thankfully I love what I do so I can do it without toooooo much complaining!

I'm excited about our next issue because it marks our SECOND ANNIVERSARY!!! Can you believe it! MOM has been around for 2 years! I feel pretty damn good about that, too!! :)

It's been a rocky road but I'm one helluva driver! Just ask Big Daddy... he's gonna blog about a certain "incident" on the go kart track. Don't believe him. He's just being a Big Baby! :D


Thursday, July 16, 2009

Dear diary, we need to talk

Imagine my surprise when Big Daddy came home and asked, "Would anyone be upset if they read your blog?"

My ears perked up and I said, "OMG! No! Why!?" knowing damn well that there would be one person who would be pissed. "Did your mother read my blahg!?!"

"What did you write about," he enquired, knowing full well it couldn't have been anything good.

"Uhm, nothing."

"Then why were you so concerned at first and now you're saying it's nothing."


OK, the thing is, I use everyday life as my muse for blogging whether it's parenting, marriage, family, friends, work... whatever.

Do I think anyone I write about will be offended? No. And I sure as shit didn't think Big Daddy's mother would care because a) what the hell would she be doing reading my blahg seeing as his 'rents don't seem to take any interest in what I do and, b) who knew she was that computer savvy, for the love of GAWD!

Let's clear some things up, shall we, dear diary?
The MIL and I have never gotten along, that's not a secret. In fact, there aren't many MIL/DIL relationships that are based on a foundation of love and friendship.
That doesn't excuse my blatant disregard for her feelings by referring to her as an "old bag."
She's not that bad, really. She did give birth to the greatest guy in the world so that counts for a lot. She's just set in her ways, isn't used to someone as obviously sarcastic, abrasive, tenacious, fierce and ferocious as I am. She's a strong woman in her own right. We don't have to get along or like each other. We just have to find a way to not let our personal feelings affect everyone around us.
So, she's royally pissed and I think even Big Daddy's Poppa is too. You see, they don't like the idea of me posting things to the public to see, especially if it's about them. I can understand that...
I'm quite empathetic, you know.
Big Daddy went through the posting and pointed out things he thought would have upset her. No point in rehashing it, and I'm not backtracking or regretting the post but our mini vacay to the Stettler Steam Train may be in jeapordy because she's that pissed. So is Big Daddy.
Fuck. I hate having to do the "apologizing" thing when I don't feel that I did anything wrong but for the sake of keeping the peace, I will make this pledge: no more MIL/FIL anecdotes.
Now, for my kids sake I won't cancel that trip and I hope that she can understand that I meant nothing by it, except to use my situation as a way to relate to other readers.
Anyway, I would hate to have my insensitivity ruin that trip tomorrow. On some level, I hope she just chalks it up to me being a bitch and shakes her head, thinking, "That damn Tamara! She's so annoying!! But, that's who she is."

Dear diary, spending time with the inlaws

Each year, Big Daddy and I take the kids and his parents somewhere for a few days to "get away" from it all. It's also our way of thanking the old folks for watching the kids whenever we need them too. They play a HUGE role in our kid's lives and, despite the fact that the MIL and I do not get along, I believe my kids need a solid relationship with their grandparents.

My grandparents were instrumental in my life, instilling values, etiquette (yes, I do have manners believe it or not!), and showing me a life outside of the innercity.

So, regardless of what relationship I do or do not have with the old bag, er, I mean Big Daddy's mom, I would never, ever deny my kids the joy of having grandparents who love them! She is a strong-willed Norwegian who is used to having her way, when she wants it, how she wants it and anyone who says otherwise better be prepared for a battle.

We've had more than a few.

Since we've had kids, things have gotten worse because she doesn't like my parenting style - I swear in front of my kids, I will discipline them no matter where we are or who's around to see it, I am very strict and don't put up with bullshit or disrespect.

Of course, she hates to see her "babies" get in trouble so when I say, "NO GAWDDAMN WAY can you have a cookie before supper!" she ignores me and puts a plate in front of him. I swear she does it just to piss me off.

I have told her multiple times, "You raise your kids, I'll raise mine. Oh, wait. That's right. You DID raise your kids. Now leave mine the hell alone!"

Yeh, dinners can be tense and it's cause for me to double up on the prozac that day if I want to make it through with out strangling the old bat, er, her.

Big Daddy's poppa is another story all together.

He has welcomed me into his family right from the beginning and didn't flinch when we told him we were getting married on A-Channel's The Big Breakfast, unlike a certain MIL who threatened not to go.


Anyhoo, Pops has been great. He gets me, probably even more than Big Daddy does. He sees that I'm not as terrible as I prefer people to think I am, and he laughs innapropriate sexual innuendos at the dinner table. I love him dearly and he is one of the few men in my life I trust.

No extended vaycay this year... for sanity's sake
This year, we're taking the inlaws on the Stettler Steam Train for a day trip. I'm looking forward to it for a couple of reasons:
a) there's no multiple-day, all-day visits
b) there's alcohol service on the train (woot!)
c) it sounds like a fun adventure that my kids will surely enjoy!
That's tomorrow.
On Sunday, we're taking the kids on a road trip to Drumheller for a few days. Oz has a fascination with dinosaurs and we only have a few days we can spare to get away so this is perfect.
I really prefer lots of long weekends during the summer anyway instead of one long trip in the middle of a busy tourist season. Lots of long weekends means every Friday off during the summer. It's my treat to myself - and my family - for putting up with me throughout the rest of the year.
Wish me luck tomorrow... we are all driving together to Stettler so.... I may just bring a flask or 6 with me for the ride! LOL kidding... I'll have my crackberry and will be posting Twitter updates from the trip.
Hope you enjoy these lazy days of summer!

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Dear diary, I have issues. Many of them.

Oh holy hell, the shit almost hit the fan this morning!!

I woke up at 4 a.m. and went to make coffee when I COULDN'T FIND MY GAWDDAMN COFFEE GRINDER!!!!

Seriously. I almost had a panic attack!! I was this close from calling my housekeeper and screaming. "WHERE THE HELL DID YOU HIDE IT BITCH!!!?!??"

Thankfully, I spied with my little eye a coffee grinder sitting beside the coffee beans. Uhm, it was 4 a.m. people!! And it doesn't normally go there. It goes right beside my prozac in a little cupboard by my coffee cups.

So... yah... not only would I have lost the most important person in my house (I love Cindy, not only because she makes my house clean for one day every two weeks but she's really awesome!! Not a bitch at all... unless she hid it on me on purpose in which case ... oh hell, just IV the coffee into my system this morning!!)

Anyhoo, I met with Kim Berube yesterday to chat about all things magazines and share some ideas. She's looking for the elusive balance in her life that we all struggle to find. You should see this woman - polished, poised, great skin, 8 feet tall (well it seems that way seeing as I'm a mere 5'5), perfectly dressed and looks the part of what I think a publisher should look like.

Me, I showed up in sweats and a t-shirt, mainly because I was picking up magazines and on my way to do distribution, which is a little tedious if I'm wearing heels however I was wearing my heeled Crocs, so... does that count as fashionable?

I didn't think so, either.

I've been thinking about a LOT of things lately

Mostly the past (because it's tough to think of the future unless you're dreaming about it, and I've been thinking ... not dreaming). I digress, I know, bear (bare?) with me! It's 5 a.m. and I'm just starting cup #2!! In fact, hang on I gotta add some of my coffee sauce (International Cream, not Baileys. Sheesh! Even I have limits!!)

Where was I... right. oh GAWD that's good!! yum!

Sorry. The past. Right. So I may or may not have mentioned that I grew up in the inner city in Edmonton (by the Stadium/Coliseum area for those of you familiar with my hometown). I have four brothers who I never see, one because he lives in Vancouver, the other three because we have nothing in common. My mom is around somewhere, I don't know where and I really have no interest in knowing, harsh as that sounds it's my reality. Never knew my biological father, never cared to find him, either. There was a string of boyfriends that my mom had until she latched on to one for a major portion of my life. He was an abusive asshole who's obituary I look forward to reading.

Cold, I know. But that's my life.

About a month ago I had a Dr. appt. downtown, which is fairly close to the old 'hood, and when as I got closer to the Dr's office, I started to have an anxiety attack. I have no friggin CLUE where that came from! I'm usually a pretty tough chick, not fazed by much but my heart started beating faster and faster and I started having to consciously control my breathing.

I have a lot of bad memories of growing up. And lately, for some really strange reason, I've started to question a lot of things about myself. Mostly whether or not I deserve what I have.

Last night, Big Daddy and I were watching an old episode of Law & Order SVU and the bad guy at the end of the episode - who I personally think just had really bad issues that he hadn't dealt with - was left alone. With no one. No one who cared about him.

"Sometimes I think that could've been me if I hadn't met you," I told Big Daddy. Granted, I had had more than a few glasses of wine and have a tendancy to see myself in almost any movie/TV show I watch, usually in the lead role because, well, that's how I role! LOL

I always include my friends and put them in the supporting roles. OMG I just literally had an AHA moment!! I've done that because my friends have been the most important people in my life since I was a kid and I've always considered friends more important than family (with the exception of Big Daddy, Oz and Lola of course).

Bah! Digressing again. Sorry. I'll try to stay focused.

I was the loyal friend with the crappy family, Chris Chambers in Stand By Me. In Young Guns, I was loyal pal and super cool outlaw Billy the Kid. In Harold & Kumar: Escape from Guantanamo Bay I was Kumar because he's pervy, funny and... uh... inappropriate! LMAO

My life after leaving home and before Big Daddy wasn't so bad. Recently, Lola found my diary from when I was 19. Thank GAWD she's only 3 and can't read because there's some pretty pathetic things in there. But I read it, parts of it, and was reminded of all of the things I did back then.

Nightclubs, one-night stands, stupid things you do when you're young. Never drugs, though, and I am proud to say I am the only member of my family who has never seen the inside of a jail cell! Woot! Woot! for me! :D

I went through all the highs and lows of being young

At 15 I moved out but still finished high school (finished, not graduated), lost my virginity at 17 to my first love, had an abortion on my 18th birthday, had my heart broken, my grandma (the only person I was truly close with and was a positive influence in my life) died when I was 19. I went to college in Calgary from 19-20, left there and came running right back to my comfort zone in Edmonton because I couldn't completely break ties with my mom at that point. Someone I loved dearly died a week after my 21st birthday. At 22, I got my dream job at a daily paper as a sports scribe in Kelowna.

Getting that job in Kelowna was a major turning point in my life because I needed to be away from everyone: my bar friends, my mom, Edmonton, my life there. I wasn't running away, I was chasing a dream. My dream was to be one of the first female sports writers who kicked ass!! That was 12 years ago, so the trend towards female sports scribes was not as huge as it is now. It was a big deal to me! I got that job a couple of weeks before I turned 23.

I loved my life there but I was always afraid I would be found out as a fraud. As someone who didn't deserve to be successful. And I kept going back to Edmonton.

When I met Big Daddy, I was more than ready to leave Kelowna. It was perfect - he lived in Edmonton and I wanted to move back. I gave up my career - not for him (as I blame him when I'm mad at him) but because I was afraid of success. I really wanted to go to a major daily, Vancouver, Edmonton, even Calgary, I didn't care as long as I eventually ended up on a sports show like TSN.

Sometimes on the way to a dream you get lost and find a better one

I found that saying about a month after I met Big Daddy. To me, it was a sign. A sign that I was on the right path and going where I was suppose to go.

We're coming up on our 10th wedding anniversary and it's the longest I've chosen to be with someone. Our kids are amazing and I love watching them because I see a miniature version of Big Daddy and me. Lola bosses Oz around, they argue, Lola stomps off, huffing and slams her bedroom door. Or they will laugh about the most ridiculous things and giggle hysterically. I am in awe of them!

There is a point to me laying all this shit bare (bear?)

I'm not embarrased about the things I did or what I did or how I did them. All of my experiences make me who I am today. There's nothing anything can say about me that I don't already know; I'm stubborn, tempermental, I take prozac, I drink too much wine, I swear too much, I think it's funny when someone trips or hits their thumb with a hammer (because I do it, too), I don't have time for catty bullshit, I can't stand people who don't have a backbone because I can't tolerate weak people. People either love me or hate me, there's really no in between. And I'm OK with that.

Lately, I just don't know who I am anymore. Am I as strong as I really think I am? Do I make a difference doing what I do? Am I wasting my time working so much and not spending enough time with my kids? Should I take more time to get my nails/hair done? Is that selfish of me?

When I look in the mirror I don't see the person I used to see
and that is depressing

I need to change something I just don't know where to start. Do you ever feel like "what's the point?" Why should I take that first step to change myself because tomorrow I'll still be fat/unhappy/wah wah friggin WAH!

I guess no one can make those changes except for me. It is time to reclaim my sense of self. To feel good about myself again. To stop doing all the things I do that I know are bad for me and start doing the things I used to do that I loved. To start smiling again!! To stop hiding from myself.

I guess I've reached that breaking point and it's do or die time. Not literally but you know what I mean.

Dear diary, this has been very therapeutic and
the tears I've shed while writing this have been cleansing for the soul.

Wow. It's 6 a.m. already. Guess I should make some coffee, jump in the shower and see where this new path takes me. Because I'm a kickass mamacita who has nothing and no one to FEAR!!

Thanks for listening!


Saturday, July 4, 2009

Finding support in the last place I'd look

So the latest edition of MOM went to the printers yesterday (yay me!) and it's gonna be a gorgeous Saturday in Spruce Grove, Alberta. I'm gonna make me some coffee (big surprise there!) and watch the sunrise because it's 4:24 a.m.!

Who the hell in their right mind gets up at 2:47 a.m. on a Saturday!! A puppy owner, that's who!

Happy woke me up to go outside (which is a nice change of pace from the first couple of days he was here) but I have this terrible habit of not being able to fall asleep once I've been woken up.

Usually, I can read myself to sleep if I check out the news on my imposter berry (yes, I sleep with my BB, only because it has an alarm clock on it! *sheepish grin here* Ok, sometimes I do check FB or Twitter when I'm up at some ungodly hour :)

I digress.

I couldn't find any decent thing to read and my pal Perez hadn't updated his blog since I'd last checked it out, so off to Twitter I went.

I saw an update by Kim Berube, publisher of Real Woman on the Run in Lacombe, which is the polar opposite of MOM, and I decided to check out her blog.

Gotta tell you, I was captivated. Real Woman on the Run has never been my cup of tea. In fact, when Kim and I were at the AMPA conference in March, she nailed it on the head when she said, "People who like my magazine are usually offended by yours while people who like your magazine think mine is dry and boring."

Ah, it's funny 'cause it's true! Kim plays it safe and me, not so much but we both have our audiences and that works for us!

I digress again but bear (bare?) with me it's 4:32 a.m. and I haven't had coffee yet.

Anyhoo, I checked out her blog and came across a very recent post about her being frustrated about her business, not having any more cash to invest and honestly considering quitting (by the end of the post she had found a little more drive and I think *hope* she is sticking with it).

A history lesson here: Kim and I launched our mags at excatly the same time! We used the same printer but had no idea who the other woman was until I saw her magazine and contacted her for a meeting.

The point is, Kim verbalized what I have been feeling for almost a year. She's going through the same ups and downs as I am but I never would have guessed it because she seems so composed, polished and confident.

It's weird, really, because in my next Diary of a Mad Publisher, I write about being frustrated with the progress of the business (you'll have to wait until the issue hits the streets to read about it).

So, for the last 2 hours I have been reading most of Kim's blog entries. Fascinating.

For the longest time I have felt very alone in this business because I have no one who can relate to what I'm going through. It's not like owning a store or operating a MLM business, indepenantly publishing a magazine is frustrating because there isn't a tonne of people who can relate to the trials and tribulations of this particular type of entrepreneurship.

Wah, wah, wah, I know. I'm not complaining, actually, I'm kinda rejuvenated because I know there is another person out there who is feeling the same way about the same things I am!

So, it's 4:41 a.m. and my Woodwick candle is crackling and making me feel somewhat sleepy. But, I know myself and I know that once I go back to bed I will just toss and turn and think about all of the things I should be doing.

Instead, I think I will ... oh who the hell knows. I can't think. I haven't had coffee and I don't like making plans.

I do know that I'm taking princess Lola to the Farmer's Market today and then to Wabamun for the festivities out there... maybe I should try and get some sleep?


Monday, June 15, 2009

What a gong show!

I know it's been a few weeks since my last post but dealing with the death of our dog has been harder on us than we ever could have imagined.

I've never had a family pet so Gazza played a huge part in our lives. When we talked about our family it was always: mom, dad, Oz, Lola and our Gazza dog, too!

Right after I posted about his death, we had a bit of an incident. While Ron was digging Gazza's grave, he hit and punctured a gas line. We have 5 acres of land so what are the freakin' odds??

Anyway, while I was actually writing that blog, I heard him running upstairs yelling for me. He's the calmest person in the world but I didn't really care that he was in such a panic because I was BLOGGING and really EMOTIONAL!!

After he called me again, I posted the blog, went upstairs and wondered WTF that smell was. And that's when he told me he hit a gas line.

This all happened within a half hour of finding our dead dog. Our kids were upset, I was an emotional wreck but our neighbours were incredibly sweet, even though I kept apologizing in advance if Ron happened to blow up their house.

The fire trucks and gas company came, asking Ron, "Um, sir, what were you doing digging a grave in the middle of the night?"

And then they wondered what he hit the gas line with because it's unusal for anyone to be able to puncure a gas line.

We ended up not getting into our house until 1:30 a.m.

The next morning when Oscar and I were talking about Gazza, Lola piped up and said, "Excuse me mom, but do I have to explain this to you?"

Oz and I looked at each other, wondering what wisdom she was about to bestow upon us. "Don't you understand," she said? "The fireman came last night to take Gazza so that he could live with them."

It was the sweetest, most saddest thing I'd ever heard.

If you've ever lost a pet, you know how hard this has been for us. I used to hear about those movies like Marley & Me and think, "How dumb. Dog's dead, get over it!!" I know, I know, heartless and lacking in empathy!!

I don't believe in replacing a family pet. It's like replacing a husband (of course if Sheldon Souray came along a week after Ron kicked it, I would be easily tempted to hit that!).

But we have decided that our house is lonely without our dog and so we are getting another Boxer puppy. He will come home at the end of the month and we are really looking forward to having him in our family.

Gazza will always be a huge part of our lives - we buried him underneath a tree in our front yard and the kids often go to see him before they go to bed. I used to tell him, "Who's the biggest dog in the world?? Gazza's the biggest dog!!" and he would twist his body and get all excited and jump on me.

I won't forget him and I am a better person for having him in my life.

xoxoox Gaz.

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Dear Diary, I am devastated,

Tonight, Big Daddy woke me up to the sounds of, "Gazza's not moving."

Usually I thank my lucky stars because usually my dog wakes me up 3 0r 4 times a night, he's worse than a kid! But tonight, when Big Daddy said Gazza wouldn't wake up, he wasn't kidding around.

My dog was dead.

Laying in the grass, comfortably dead.

Big Daddy discovered him less than an hour ago and I am crushed. I can't imagine what my kids are going to feel when they wake up and their dog is dead.

Gazza has been with us almost as long as Oz has been here. He turned 6 this year in March just when Oscar celebrated his 7th birthday. We've taken him for granted over the years much like you take anything or anyone you love for granted, expecting them to be there forever.

When I came downstairs to the "dungeon" I half expected the little bastard to follow right behind me as he usually does, clicking his toenails on the floor, nudging to get past me.

My poor, sweet. loyal dopey dawg. I loved him and rarely told him so. I was looking forward to a summer of hiking with him, and playing in the yard.

I will miss my dog and think of him always.

My heart is broken.


Monday, May 25, 2009

Dear Diary MOM's going south

That's RIGHT! MOM Magazine is officially expanding to Calgary!

We have had tonnes of interest in the magazine from the women of Cowtown, how could we possibly deny them any longer? This gives me even more excuses to escape to Calgary on a regular basis! Woot! Woot!!

I am currently looking for potential advertisers who want to reach that demographic so email me for more details.

Also, this summer marks a whole helluvalotta events for MOM starting June 5th at Social Script in Spruce Grove. This party will be one you SHOULD NOT MISS!
$5 gets you in the door and a free drink PLUS enjoy a snazzy fashion show, dancing, prizes and KILLER discounts!

June 20
Big Daddy's BIG Appetite
Servings in Spruce Grove
Get your Father's Day meal ready for his special day all while enjoying maragritas, games, prizes and FUN!
Tickets available at Servings in Spruce Grove or by calling me at 780-940-8337

July 25
Naughty Girls Only Pajama Party

Boudoir Photography, Pole Dancing, a Penis Pleaser party presented by the Travelling Tickle Trunk and SO much more!!
Tickets available June 15

August 13
MOM's First-ever Foursome!
Join us for a golf night like you've NEVER experienced! Duffy's Challenge takes the yawnnnn out of golf with a laid back atmosphere and family-friendly greens.Here's the deal:This is not serious golf. This is not a serious tournament. This is just a FUN day to get together, smack some balls, and have some fun!
Prizes, food, FUN!!! This is a 18+ over, mixed event, 9-holes and BBQ.

September 25
2nd Annual Scavenger Hunt
Teams of 2 compete in 30 different stops in and around the Edmonton area then RACE to the finish line!
More details to come.

So, as you can see... it's kinda busy for us at MOM but we want to keep you interested.

If you are interested in particpating in any of the events, please contact me or JOIN OUR FACEBOOK group

Also, if you are a business that would like to advertise or distribute MOM please contact me directly and I would be MORE than thrilled to chat with you!

For now, I'm taking the rest of the day off to play with my little girl! After all, this is what being a mom is really all about!

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Summer Getaways...

I'm in awe of the women out there who look like they can balance it all. I have a really tough time getting my shit together for the day, let alone planning for a family vacation.

Lots of the moms I know, camp. They love it! Personally, I don't get it. You're transporting your family from the cozy comforts of home to the confines of a camper. Why? And they don't just do this once or twice, they do it MULTIPLE times a month! There's so much prep work involved plus, the thought of peeing outside is enough to make me go, "Nuh uh!"

I have a hard enough time planning the meals for the week and executing that little event, I can't imagine taking it to the wilderness and having to cook over an open flame.

Getting away from it all takes planning. And organization. Two things I am not good at. How I ever get the magazine done is beyond me... I probably would do a helluvalot better if I were more organized.

My ideal getaway involves anything last-minute.

Big Daddy: "Wanna go somewhere?"

Me: "Hmm.... production doesn't start until next week... why, yes. Yes I do!"

Big Daddy: "Vegas ok?"

Me: "I'm packed BABY!!"

See? Super simple! No fuss, no muss, no kids!

Theoretically, we're going to Disneyland for Lola's 4th birthday but, once again, that involves planning. My impulsive nature wants me to just wing it but the "grown up" in me (and I use that term loosely) thinks I need to make sure I have my shit together.

I'm torn! Torn, I say!!

This summer, I would love to spend more time with the kids. My goal is to schedule time into the week, specifically for that. But summer vacations seem so... overrated.

I prefer lots of one-day excursions to the corn mazes or the Prairie Gardens. Too much time alone with the family drives me to increase the prozac dosage!

Yeh, it's gonna be a good summer with no planning.

What are you doing??


Saturday, May 16, 2009

Are you a Smokin' Hawt mama??

In preparation for the next issue (good GAWD why do I do this to myself???!!!) we're asking readers to send in their favourite pics of themselves doing their FAVOURITE summer activity!

Now, the response for this has been pretty good but I am concerned about all you moms who have msged me about the shoot and want to send a pic of you drinking!


Are you saying - no correct me if I'm wrong here - that MOMS DRINK!!!???

But doesn't that go against the moral code of being a MOM!?



Ok Seriously, it does surprise me a teensy weensy bit that there are other moms out there who enjoy the drink as much as I do! Hell, I'm just happy I'm not the only one who admits it!

Now, back to the shoot. Send us your best - or worst - pics of you doing your fave summer activity and I will do my best to make sure it gets into this issue. ALL of the pics will be posted on the website, so buyer beware.

If you live in Edmonton or surrounding area and want us to shoot you, feel free to message me.

For all of the out-of-towners who LOVE us, just send 'em our way!!

Looking forward to getting YOU between our covers!!


Thursday, May 14, 2009

In the May/June issue of MOM, I wrote a Dear Diary about Twitter/FB and RECENTLY, as in just this moment, I have discovered that FB has added a page where I can connect with our readers without having to add you as a "friend."

I don't have any friends on FB anyway - except Big Daddy - but I love connecting with the readers! Here you can have discussions with other MOMs about anything you want! Topics you want to see in the magazine, complain about Big Daddy, ask us questions... anything!

Thats our fan page... check it OUT!

Gotta run! (not literally because I run like Sid the Sloth from Ice Age!)


Tuesday, May 5, 2009

My MOM is cooler that yours

Ok, so I've had it.

I'm tired of the lame-ass assumptions that MOM is a parenting magazine or is compared to the other shit that's out there.

All you have to do is take one little peek between our covers to see that MOM is not like the boring, dry, regurgitated puree that you're used to. Even the so-called "innovative magazines" that claim to be all about YOU and your life, really aren't.


The word MOM doesn't have to be associated with June Cleaver, yet people still do. I'm baffled by this but I guess I shouldn't be. Most moms I meet still like to come across as

Saturday, April 25, 2009

Deadlines and more alcohol

First, if you haven't done so already, check me out on twitter: MOMmagRocks

Second, the mag went to press yesterday but not without a few glitches (BIG friggin' surprise!)

This issue has forced me to get back on schedule - which is a good thing - but it happened at the expense of my family. I spent the last two weeks literally glued to my chair working on ads, design, writing... if it had to be done, I had to do it.

Now, I can relax for a few days, get reaquainted with the kids and maybe - just maybe, mind you - catch up on some sleep before the next issue demands my attention.

I've had tonnes of interest in the magazine from other areas of the country! They like what I am doing and recognize that it is a unique twist on an old concept. HALLE-freakin' LUJAH!!

Someone out there other than me, gets it! I was beginning to think I was alone in this process but am glad to see there are people out there who are smart, too.

If you're one of the smart ones who read the mag and the blahg, FABULOUS! If you're not, and read this just to find something to complain about, here's something for you to ponder: "Don't tell me about rules, dear, wherever I go, I make the gawddamn rules!" opera diva Maria Callas

And on that note, cue the music!


Monday, April 20, 2009

deadlines and alcohol

Ok, OMG!

The window of opportunity to get this next issue to press has been SO tight!! But holy crap does this issue ever ROCK!!

I know, I know, I say that EVERY issue but MOM continues to kick MAJOR ass!!!!

Our cover is off da hook! Our content smokes! Our design is faboosh!

I'm so pleased! Can you tell?!

Now I only have 2 1/2 days left till press but I wanted to give you a quick update.

If you aren't a member of our Facebook group, get on it!!! We've had some pretty fan-freakin'tastic contests that you've missed out on because you're not there!

I'll chat more later... gotta run!

Friday, April 10, 2009

dear diary, two weeks till press time!

How the HELL did I lose track of time?! It's April 10 and I need to send the files to press April 24 in order to have my street date of May 1!

Big Daddy and I are going to Vegas April 28 for his 40th birthday and I'm super pumped HOWEVER if something goes wrong while I'm away, it means I'm screwed. SCREWED I tell you!!

I'm also dissapointed in the ad sales. Our numbers our wayyyyy down and I think that is due directly to all the gloom and doom of the gawddamn media!!

I saw an article on about

Sunday, April 5, 2009

dear diary, i need an assistant!

No this isn't a help wanted ad, I'm not actually hiring anyone but when I can afford to do so, I will let you know!!

I just put together my to-do list for tomorrow and I want to go back to bed and cry. PMS is a bitch that way. I get sooooo overwhelmed by all of the things I want to do and then when I start to organize it and look at how I have to accomplish it, I think WTF!!! Why do I do this to myself?!

I have a couple of big projects in the works and realize that maybe - just maybe - I have to learn to delegate. Hmmm... delegate. Such an odd and foreign concept to me. But it may just be the answer to saving my sanity and my marriage.

I mean, look at this for Gawds sakes!! It's Sunday afternoon and I'm blogging about all the crap I have to do this week. Gawd forbid, I actually tear myself away from the computer to clean my house! LMAO! Now why the hell would I do that?!?!

Seriously, though, I need to start getting up early again so I can accomplish more... I'm pretty productive at 4 a.m.

Fortunately, I have some fabulous girls working with me so maybe - just maybe - I can throw some stuff their way.

On another note, Spring looks like it's here (about f'kin time, too!!) so I am adding a personal to-do list to my day and even programming it into my Imposter Barry. Tanning, nails, showering... these are all things a girl should really do!! And, what the hell!! I think I'm gonna do it!! Uhm, kidding about the showering thing, though... :D

In the meantime, I am looking for some "volunteers" to do some stuff... let me know if you're interested!!


Saturday, April 4, 2009

dear diary, I was in awe...

For the past three days, I have been at the Alberta Women Entrepreneurs conference at the River Cree.

It was basically a gathering of business women to network, listen to amazing speakers and learn how to be innovative and successful.

I can't say it was the best use of my time but it wasn't a total wash.

Personally, the hilight was a phenomenal speech given by Ben Barry, the creator of the Dove Campaign for Real Beauty. You know that campaign - it's the reason we all LOVE DOVE!

He is YOUNG!! 26 to be exact! His story is amazing but I'm not going to tell you right now...

Anyway, he was so inspiring and fabulous that I had to show him the magazine. He LOVED IT!!! Because we do what he does - only on a much smaller scale but with the same empowering message!!

Also, I truly enjoyed listening to Eveline Charles, CEO extraordinaire of EvelineCharles Salon and Spas... I had heard things about her prior to meeting or hearing her speak. Things like: She's a bitch, she's a piranha, she will eat you ALIVE, she has no time for anyone who is "beneath her"... I'm sure you've heard the rumours.

But, having never met her I was curious about her story and what she had to say. As I listened to her speak, I realized we had very similar personalities and similar drive and passion for what we do. Now, I admit, I've been called a bitch, too, among other things but I truly beleive that those who do the namecalling are weak and jealous.

I had the chance to chat with Eveline after her speech and was thrilled that she took some time to look at the magazine and offered to follow up with a phone call to chat further. That is one phone call I am looking forward to!!

Another "piranha" who was there was Venture Publishing CEO Ruth Kelly. The rumours about her are similar to those of Eveline Charles. However, having worked for Ruth I could see why and where those rumours came from because she IS tough and she can cut you into a thousand little pieces with her comments. God knows, she did it to me. But you know what? She didn't get to where she is by mothering her staff or playing nice with the boys. She did it by kickin' ass and takin' names. But there is another side of her that, if you're perceptive enough and smart enough to recognize it, is caring and thoughtful. If she weren't, I don't think I would've been able to approach her for mentoring with my magazine. But when I did, she took time out of her INCREDIBLY busy schedule to help me. Some of her advice I took and some of it I filed for future reference.

I digress.

The point is, the conference was "meh" and I would have like to see more hands-on training in smaller groups.

Oh, and Debbie Travis was there!! She closed out the conference talking about sex and alcohol. Seriously, I think she's a dirrty girl the way she was handing out dating tips like "Have sex on the first night!" and how she enjoyed "Drinking lots of wine and lots of coffee to recover!" I loved how real she was!!

Well, it's Saturday and I haven't seen my kids for EVER so I'm taking the Oz man with me to deliver magazines. Quality time with the boy! Oh, and I think Monsters vs. Aliens is on, too, so we might take that in...

What do you have planned for the weekend?!

Be safe, regardless of what it is!