Me and Meg

If such a class exists (which I'm most certain it does) I hope a tiny, little five-year-old is teaching it. They have the sales gig down. 
At some stage we have all had a sales job and what many of us don't realize, is that, we are always selling ourselves - especially if you have kids.  The thing is, for as much as we are trying to "sell them" on the virtues of manners, discipline, listening etc.; kids are the ones making the major deals and doing it so very often.

Let me give you an example. The setting: my mother's pool. I have just plucked my three out of the water. I feel that, after three hours of swimming, a break is needed. I told them we were going inside for lunch. Here is the ensuing conversation.

Malone: Mom, after lunch can we go back out?
Me: No, I want you guys to stay inside for a little bit.
Malone: Oh, is a little bit like just 'til we're done lunch?
Me: No. I don't know. Just eat.
I make myself a salad and sit down. Barely five minutes has gone by, there is peace.
Malone: I hammered my lunch. I'm so hot, I wish I could go swim right now. Can I go down by the pool, just put my feet in? Uncle Funk is out there, he'll watch me. Swimming is good for you, right mom? It's exercise. I love exercising in the pool.
Me: No. I want you guys to stay inside for a bit. 
Malone: Can I have a bath? I just want to get my body wet, I'll be inside too, which is what you want.
Me: I'm eating, just stop right now. Put on Max and Ruby.
Malone: Max and Ruby are swimming! Oh look mom, it looks like so much fun. I can't wait to be back in the pool. Mom, are you going to swim today?
Me: Yeah, I'll go in later.
Malone: Mom, do you love having a pool? I love it. I wish I could go outside and just look at it. 
Me: Malone stop talking.
Malone: Oh, mom the boys are here! They must be here to swim. Can I go swimming?
Me: Yup.

I gave up. I relented. Sold. I bought something I didn't want to. I got pressured into doing something I didn't want to do, mainly because it just doesn't stop.

I have these kinds of conversations all the time. Maybe my biggest problem is that I engage in these exchanges. I believe kids are the best salespeople. They are unrelenting, they can quickly find a new angle to try and "get you", and they're unabashed. They don't care if you say no, they will keep coming at you and coming at you until you say yes. Their persistence is amazing.

I'm sick of being pressured by my kids. My new tactic, say "no" once and then drop the hammer on them if they don't clue in. My problem is, usually when I give them a consequence it's something stupid like "Malone, if you ask to go outside one more time we are leaving." Even though, I don't want to leave. We are not going to leave. So what I have done is put myself in a little bit of a pickle. Malone knows it too. Then I have to come up with some "reason" as to why we actually aren't leaving and give her the "you got lucky" speech. Then she runs away from the conversation cheering "yeah, I got lucky AGAIN." Shit.

I think what I need to do is when I am presented with these situations I literally have to stop everything I'm doing - no distractions. I think if I enter into the sales pitch with my total focus I can come out on top. Surely, a five-year-old can not still win a battle when we go toe to toe?
Me and Meg

What does that mean? It means I am doing Crossfit. If you do not know what Crossfit is, I"ll sum it up for you: you go to a industrial building in a part of town you have never been before, where coaches instruct you on how to punish the s-h-i-t out of your body. After a week you are left with arms that will not straighten past ninety degrees and a bladder that is constantly full because you can not make the painful journey down to the toilet seat; which is absolutely lower than it normally is. It is torture. To get a more detailed idea of what Crossfit is, check out this site: Hill Country Crossfit ( 

So why am I doing it? As usual it's Leigh's fault. Let me take you back a few years.... When I was maybe eleven years old, Leigh started working out. I remember her walking down to the clubhouse to workout (at the time we lived on a golf course and there was a little fitness centre). Now, I can not recall if Leigh always had sculpted toned arms or if her ambitious fifteen year old self pumped enough iron to develop them. The point is, her arms are amazing. Around sixteen years old, I started going to the gym with her; I had no choice. What was I going to do, be the chubby younger sister? I dabbled a little in that role, with my McChicken eating and sweatshirt wearing ways. But, ultimately I knew it wasn't the life for me. Off I went to the gym with Leigh and really learned anything I knew about fitness from her. For a solid fifteen years Leigh has been waking me up to go running - when we were younger she would barge into my room and wake me, now she BBMs me until I respond. 

Annoying? Yes. Am I thankful I have a sister who is committed to physical fitness and has dragged me along with her? Double yes. She is my motivation. So, here we are today. For the past three years I have been working out in my dungeon of a basement, hopping over transformers and stepping on blocks - it has been treacherous and unvaried. A year and a half ago Leigh and I started The Tracy Anderson Method, which we have both really enjoyed. However, I am bored. I am so over working out at home, alone, in the damp, darkness of my tiny dungeon. I need a change.I need some interaction. So I have put Tracy on hold and have FINALLY agreed to my husband's suggestion to join Crossfit. And I love it. I love being with people, I love having someone tell me what to do. I love doing workouts that last only fifteen minutes; I love getting my a-s-s kicked. 

Last week we did a five minute workout. Yes it was hard and crazy, but it was only five minutes. Luckily, entering into my third week of training, my T-Rex arms have subsided and the toilet is back to it's normal height. Summer is around the corner, if you are struggling with your fitness regime and are prepared to suffer, I highly recommend you check out your local Crossfit. At least for awhile. Plus, Ryan likes it, and he might be back this way come September for TIFF. This time, I'll be ready.

image via:
Me and Meg

I've spent the week trying to explain to Malone why I have tattoos. I have two. Sometimes, because they're both so amazing I have trouble picking which one I like best. The tropical fish by my crotch is the winner though. Yes. I got a fish tattooed on my body and chose the middle of my hip flexor as the spot. It's really ugly with bubbles coming out of its mouth. I was eighteen; I went with two friends, both who had something picked out ahead of time. I got to the parlor and buckled under the pressure, what the hell was I going to pick? So I picked a fish. I think I might go and get "idiot" tattooed underneath it. Then people can stop asking me why I 
picked it.

The second one is a star on my foot. I'm okay with it-sometimes. Every now and then someone will say "did you pick the star because each point is a member of your family"? Shit, no. I did it on a whim on a date-completely random.
Here's my conversation with Malone about them:
Malone: why do you have that permanent mark there (pointing to the fish)?

Me: I don't know.
Malone: it's permanent that means it can't come off, right mom?
Me: yes.
Malone: did you do that when you were a teenager or adult?
Me: teenager, it was a mistake. I wish it wasn't there.
Malone: yeah, I think it's stupid, I'm not going to get one, even when I'm a teenager.
Me: good Lones. Don't do it.
Well, it looks like I have taught Malone another valuable lesson from a mistake I made.
Imagine this with bubbles coming out of its mouth. Yes, it's this bad.

Me and Meg

Be honest ladies, when did these become an option:

I understand if you are wearing a certain ensemble and need some help for the night, fine, rock a pair of Spanx. But daily? I just don't know how you can feel like you are making it happen with these big ol'undies on? I am not suggesting you have to look hot for your man. I'm suggesting you look and feel hot for yourself. Does that sound really lame? Maybe not having thread up your crack makes you feel sexy? Hmm. I'm not convinced. Thongs are not the only option, I understand there are times when you just want to rock a fullback brief. Why not go for something like this:

Why don't we ask Leigh, she loves fleshy tone, nasty fullback underwear. She just got back from her workout...

I think what is most disturbing is that Leigh is going so far as to wear them swimming:


Me and Meg

Meg wants to have a fourth child. I'm all for it. It's good for business, and she can finally shut our mother up who says "I had four with no help". Meg will be able to say that too, and that excites me. Why hasn't Meg done it yet? Well, she wants a bigger house. Fine. Lately though she's been saying that the age gap is going to be too big. Billie's going to be three, Jax is already seven. I looked her at her confused.

 My response: "you're thrity-one, have another baby". Meg's been talking about getting a dog lately, and got a little dewy-eyed over watching Kai play with rabbits? Huh? Now I know she's in real trouble. You get a dog when you're broody or bored. Or you're kids have talked you into it. I told Meg, you need to have a baby. I reminded her she hates dogs. Next thing I know she's going to come home with a pet hamster. 

If you don't know, Meg has a penchant for small critters,click here:

 We had a conversation over the weekend, about celebrities and babies. Here's what ensued: 
Me: "Meryl Streep has four kids, I think". 
Meg: "she does, she has had such a great career". 
Me: "I wonder how much of an age gap there is between her kids?" 
Meg: "I am going to google it right now, if there is a big age gap between them,I will have a fourth". 

I must say, I was really impressed with Meg's logic. Does everyone who has such weigthy life-decisions to make use this same tactic? Between Meryl's four kids there is a nine year age gap. This means Meg is having a fourth baby. I am now asking her each morning if she's pregnant. I think she really likes that. Cheers, cheers L.

Me and Meg

I have no choice but to take-up another cause. My new battle frontier: The Dry Cleaner.  Why? They're trying to shovel kak into my mouth and I won't stand for it any longer.

The blouse vs. the shirt. Scratch that. A woman's shirt vs. a man's shirt. Gender pricing. Sexism at the Cleaners. I don't want to get crazy about the semantics of it all. So let's call it bullshit. Yes, even though I stay at home cleaning in an apron, wearing dresses, sometimes I do wear "blouses" (I hate that word - along with panties).

My husband’s  shirts cost $1.29 to be laundered and pressed. (I charge $4.50 so he's getting a really good deal at the Cleaners). My shirt, which looks the same, (ahem, slightly smaller) costs $5.00.  I was told it's because the "form" the shirts are pressed on is a men's form, and my "blouse" has to be hand pressed.

Really? The manufacturer of the "men's form" hasn't been asked to make one to a fit a woman's shirt? We're going to stand for this? My deodorant costs more, so do my razors among countless other items. Why is that?
Along with wiping capri-pants off the face of the Earth, I'm going to now challenge Dry Cleaners everywhere to make a woman's shirt the same price to clean as a man's.

Me and Meg
Billie WILL dress like a Girl. 

Billie thinks she is a boy. 

I realized the chances of her being a tomboy were quite high, what with two older brothers and all. I have absolutely no issue with that, except for where clothing is concerned. I want her to be a tomboy in girlie clothing, is there such a thing? I was hoping she would want to run around, get dirty, climb trees and wrestle all the while wearing a cute dress with her hair in beautiful pigtails. It would seem, she has a different plan. Last summer I could dress her in anything and she was down with it; it was actually a point of pride as I could hold it against Leigh (who at the time was having trouble getting Stella to cooperate with certain items). 

Now, Stella is walking around in gingham blazers and chinos, while Billie has taken on the more stubborn approach her cousin formely adhered to. I am not giving in. I just purchased her a new spring coat; it's girlie but not over the top. I also grabbed a few rompers in floral fabrics - we will see how she handles those. As I type this she is watching Transformers in her Optimus Prime costume. We went shoe shopping last week and she had the audacity to pick out these bad boys: {INSERT PIC HERE} She knows where I stand on licensed goods: undies and pyjamas only. 

I had to talk her off the ledge when she realized we were leaving the store and her Super Hero Squad Crocs were staying put. On a postive note, she did want to wear a hairband last week; but she also spends the majority of her nights playing mini-sticks with brothers - that's a whole other can of worms. Bottom line, I'm not ready for her to dress like a boy. CHeers, Meg Wismer

Jax and I were alone in the car the other day when he exclaimed "mom I just saw a castle up on that hill, it was blue." Knowing the area I knew he was referring to a church. I said to him, "I know what you are talking about, it is actually a church." I paused and then thought "I wonder if he knows what people do at church?"  Obviously I asked him. "Jax what do you think goes on at church?"
 "When people die you go to church for the funeral" he responded. Hmm.

Clearly, Wizz and I do not frequent church. When I was little we attended Sunday school, but from the age of six, I have probably gone to church (for service) maybe a dozen times. Every once in a while our dad would make some proclamation about being a failure as a father for not instilling the importance of attending church, so we would be dragged off. We would attend once and then that would be it for another year or so. That suited me fine. I am not one for organized religion. This also angered my father. How could I make such a statement when I had not read the bible? I was uneducated.

I'm a bit ambivalent about it. Part of me feels like I have a responsibility to take him to church so he can experience it and see what he thinks. At least that way he would know what goes on. I don't need him asking "who died" every time someone says they went to church. What I've realized is I have to open up the religion discussion. I am going to shop around, maybe we will hit temple this weekend and head over to the synagogue next.
With Easter coming I have an opportunity here; our kids think Easter is when the Easter bunny comes and we eat chocolate, that's it. The fact that Jesus rose again (I think, right?) is not even on their radar.  Not sure yet if I care.....

Me and
Not from drinking. I'm hung over from my trip. Maybe it's jet lag. But I think I'm hung over from being alone and having freedom. I returned from South Africa last night and the harsh reality that climbed all over me was extremely jarring. I wasn't in the house twenty minutes and Malone thought she had gas, then looked at me and said "I think I pooped a bit in my pants". At the same time Freya took off her diaper and peed on the couch while Stella laid crying on the floor because I trying to get her to take a Hello Kitty costume off and put her pajamas on. 

 I stopped right there. I looked to the heavens and said to myself: "what the f*ck is wrong with me"? I couldn't believe the chaos. The major issue is I felt like somehow my energy, my presence alone was responsible for the girls behaviour. It would have been deeply upsetting to a person who has half a brain; luckily I'm too stupid to get terribly upset or hard on myself. I simply opened up a bottle of champagne (that I promised I wouldn't open until Stella's birthday, I also said no drinking for at least a couple of days) and toasted my return to my spazzed-out life.

 I've had the t.v on all morning; I have got to ease myself back into this mothering thing. Freya woke up at 7:30. She was the last one up. That is unprecedented. If I think about, I bet not one of my siblings will ask me to watch their kids when they go away; I think they're all too scared I will screw them up. I may be the smartest person after all. 

 Cheers, cheers.

 P.S. Go to Cape Town.