Friday, April 30, 2010

A Question for Horse Owners

Since I already picked on horse farm owners (see yesterday’s post), I thought I would pick on people who consider themselves horse lovers.

For the record, I have never been ONE of those girls. You know the type – the girls who had horse posters on their walls, hung out in stables and begged their parents for riding lessons.

In fact, it was my younger brother who spent his time mucking out stables, taking riding lessons and going to horse camps and winning ribbons.

However, I appreciate the beauty and strength of horses. I think they are magnificent looking creatures, with soft muzzles and understanding eyes.

What I don’t understand is the behaviour of people who own horses.

If you love horses and they are considered your pet, how come you are willing to sell them when you no longer have time for them?

I realize horses live a long time – on average between 25 to 30 years. It’s a huge commitment when you purchase a horse, however, it’s your pet, your child and, as you would tell a child, if you make a commitment, you have to stick it out.

So how come some people are so willing to sell their pets?

Now, I am not talking about the people who have to sell their horses because of financial hardship. That is a totally different situation. I have a friend who thinks about the horse she was forced to give up all the time.

However, it’s not uncommon to hear about people giving up a horse because they are tired of it, because they don’t want to be bothered looking after it any more or they don’t have time for it.

And that poor horse is sold to another person and then another until, hopefully, it finds a retirement home rather than being put down.

Could you imagine doing that to a dog or a cat?

So what’s the difference?

Thursday, April 29, 2010

What’s The Point of Horse Farms?

Can someone please tell me what is the point of horse farms?

The areas surrounding Toronto are filled with horse farms. Several years ago, the provincial government of the day suggested taxing horse farms.

Living in York Region, my newspaper was filled with stories from irate horse farm owners who said their business would be destroyed if they didn’t get the same tax breaks as farmers raising cattle and other livestock and those who had crops.

So what is the point of a horse farm?

What do horses do other than give pleasure to those who own them?

I can understand horse farms that are breeding horses for racing. To me, that is a legitimate farm. But I can’t image all those horse farms I pass are all breeding horses for Breeder’s Cup or the Kentucky Derby.

I don’t believe there is a large market for eating horsemeat in Canada so unless horse farmers are shipping their animals to countries that enjoy the taste of horse, what is the point?

Does anyone know?

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Do You Want to Share?

My son is really good at sharing. He will share his dinner with his dad, his snack with his sister and his sippy cup with any cute girl who walks by.

Yesterday, both his dad and I received his cold.

So I thought I would pay it forward. Does anyone want to share?

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Catch Anything?

Yesterday I saw a man fishing in the ditch.
What was he hoping to catch?

Friday, April 23, 2010

They Just Don’t Get It

People are funny.

I was talking to a woman a few weeks back. We were chatting about a hairdresser she found who offers a great cut at a reasonable price. I mentioned I needed to go to that hairdresser but it wouldn’t work as the hairdresser – and the haircut – would cut into the limited amount of time I had with my son.

The woman gave me a seriously look and in a serious voice told me I had the right to have some me time.

I smiled and tried to explain to her that I do have ‘me time’ but gave it up for a lost cause.

Some people just don’t get it.

I have lots of me time.

I have me time in the hour it takes to get to the office and the hour it takes to get back to my little guy. I have the hours between when he goes to bed at 7 p.m. and I go to bed around 9ish.

I am not one of those people who feel they have lost themselves in becoming a mother.

In fact, a mom is what I have been waiting to become for a long time.

And since I have to go to work, and allow some other woman to raise my child, I will not lose what precious little time I have with my son doing anything other than be his ‘mumm-eee’.

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Happy Earth Day Everyone

It’s Earth Day and the 40th anniversary of an event, which encourages people to remember Mother Earth at least one day a year.

I don’t remember celebrating Earth Day as a child. I suppose we celebrated it simply by enjoying nature and respecting our neighbours by not throwing garbage on the ground and turning off our lights so they could see the night sky.

Today, school children host events and awareness sessions, the City of Toronto hosts cleanups and entertainment and companies offer incentives to help people go green. The CN Tower is getting into the act by lighting up the tourist attraction in green at dusk. Of course, I think they should be turning off the lights rather than making it green, but that is likely just me.

Happy Earth Day everyone.

Now get outside and enjoy all Mother Nature has to offer.

On another note:
Thank you to Mommy's Sippy Cup, who presented me with the Honest Scrap Award, my second time receiving this award this week.

I don’t think people need to read another 10 things about myself so instead I point you to my last blog entry…

Mommy's Sippy Cup is deserving of the Honest Scrap Award. She often makes me laugh and I particularly like the name of her blog – and the picture that goes along with it. My sippy cup would have liquid chocolate in it.

Thank you again.

Wednesday, April 21, 2010


People with monotone voices shouldn’t be on the radio.

For the most part, our local radio commercials are pretty funny. Many make me laugh – or groan – out loud. Some are painful and embarrassing.

A few should just be taken off the air because the narrator’s voice puts me to sleep – while behind the wheel.

If you aren’t an actor and you simply read off a bad script in the same voice without infliction and talk on and on without pausing for breath and stopping at periods, you obviously should not be anywhere near a microphone.

It actually makes me want to reach into the studio and slap that person and anyone who hired him.

Another really boring person who shouldn’t be on the radio is one of the reporters from New York’s Bloomberg Market Minute.

Financial reports are boring enough. They don’t need monotone boy making it worse.

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Well, You Don’t See That Every Day

I followed a helicopter home last week.


The helicopter was being pulled by a 250-Dodge Ram, which isn’t a large pickup truck. I guess I was surprised a helicopter would be pulled by anything at all (wouldn’t it just fly to its location?), never mind being light enough to be pulled by a smaller pickup truck.

I wasn’t the only one to stop and stare. I noticed many drivers slowing down and turning to look.

So you know, a helicopter is transported on a flatbed trailer with its blades tied down with light rope.

Monday, April 19, 2010

Honest Scrap Award

Thanks for longtime friend and Moments of Clarity blogger Mundanemomma for giving me the Honest Scrap Award.

Here are the rules:

#1. Brag about the award.

Well, why be original when you can misquote actress Sally Field – ‘You like me, you really like me.’

#2. Include the name of the person who gave the award to you and link back to that blogger.

Her penname is Mundanemomma at Moments of Clarity

#3. Choose a selection of blogs that you find brilliant in honest content.
#4. Show their names and links and leave a comment informing them that they were prized with this award.
Humes Party of three

Fighting off Frumpy

Lady Mama

#5. List at least 10 honest things about yourself.

1. I don’t like to talk about myself. I think if you read my blog, you’ll glean a lot of information about me from it but I don’t like to provide information in this sort of forum. However, I like to read about others.

2. I am a journalist and an editor. I have written, assigned and read many stories about cyber crime, bullying, stalking, and predators. As such, I particularly don’t like posting info or pictures about my little guy. Facebook, particularly since it has changed its privacy policies, frightens me. Too much info people!

3. I really want to be a non-working stay-at-home mom. However, I am willing to freelance edit and write and stay at home.

4. My brother once called me untrusting and I was offended. Unfortunately, he is correct. However, not trusting people has saved me – and my family – more than once.

5. I am fiercely loyal and have high moral standards for myself.

6. I am directionally challenged and have no idea how to get to places I used to live. GPS was created for me.

7. I am a strong person.

8. Motherhood is the best job anyone can have.

9. I have a stepdaughter who brings great joy and happiness – and comic relief – to my life. I am lucky that she wasn’t one of THOSE teenagers who I wanted to lock in the basement and not release until she was 20. Actually, she went to the basement by choice and she will be 20 this year. Time flies.

10. I am a good listener and secret keeper.

Friday, April 16, 2010

There Was A Time…

There was a time...
...When I used to be fashion conscious.

Now let me say that I have always beat to my own drum when it comes to fashion. I have always worn what I want, but it at least followed the style of the day. I had the bad hair of the 1980s and ’90s, the big glasses, the giant earrings and the ugly clothes, which, sadly, are making a comeback.

Today, while I wish I had more money to spend on clothes, I am surrounded by people who think they are fashion gurus and are not shy about their views, making such blatant statements as:

• Women who have blond hair and are over 30 are trailer trash because they obviously dye it and it looks ridiculous. (For the record, I have two aunts who both have yellow-blond hair. They have never dyed it and they are 45 and over 50.)
• Women who dye their hair all one colour are trailer trash. I have to dye my hair so now what?
• Girls under 30 have no right to wear red lipstick, they look like trailer trash. Are you seeing the pattern here?

Any way, these types of people drive me crazy because I do not think fashion is black and white.

Fashion is shades of grey and is all about interpretation and wearing something that makes you feel and look good.

However, dealing with people like this makes me want to go in the complete other directions, which, I know, is ridiculous.

There was a time …..
...When I baked nightly.

I would get a recipe for work that didn’t come with a photo, go home, make it and take photos of it for the paper.

My coworkers were happy because they often got samples. I would bake cookies and brownies and bring them in to share. I would have tea biscuits nightly.

Then I had my little guy. And after he goes to bed, I get ready for work, have a shower, read and go to bed myself. No baked goods to share. No tea biscuits for me.

There was a time….
...When I would read many books in a course of a week.
I can now read a magazine in the course of week, a book is a month or so.

There was a time…
...When the green monster would rear its ugly head every time I heard the words ‘I’m pregnant.’

The monster didn’t stay long and I eventually was happy for whoever was lucky enough to be pregnant, but still it appeared and made me feel badly for a bit.

Then I was lucky enough to become pregnant myself. My son arrived and he has brought me constant joy.

So there may have been a time when I had extra money and time, now I have little-boy giggles, pee on the floor, impish smiles, cute laundry, hugs and open-mouth kisses, peak-a-boo and constant happiness.

Monday, April 12, 2010

Don’t Panic…Yet!

I was panicking all the way to work this morning.

I was listening to the radio and one of the main stories was about Ontario's new harmonized sales tax (HST) and how it was going to effect, or not effect, renters.

In the 2009 budget, the Liberal party announced residents would get the HST, which combines the eight per cent provincial sales tax with the five per cent federal government’s goods and service tax (GST) offering a 13 per cent HST on a number of items.

According to the province’s website, 83 per cent of Ontarians will not be affected by this change of tax.

Things such as basic groceries, prepared food under $4, the HST will not hit newspapers and famine hygiene products.

However, electricity, gas, Internet fees and professional services such as hair cutting will be beginning July 1.

When I arrived to work, I looked up the above-mentioned website and felt panic subsiding a little bit.

I can still buy fruit without worrying about the HST, however, the cost of getting to work is going to be even more expensive than before. Daycare prices won’t go up but my utilities will.

Where does the government think this extra money is coming from?

My salary hasn’t gone up in years and won’t be going up any time in the near – or far – future.

OK, the panic is creeping back up.

Damn this government.

Damn the people of Toronto Centre, who elected a Liberal member of parliament (MP) in a recent byelection rather than voting in a person from any other party. This would have shown the Premier Dalton McGuinty government that Ontarians are angry with the HST and are willing to go to the polls to do so.

Friday, April 9, 2010

Thankful Friday

It’s Friday. I had things to write about yesterday but as I was off with a sick baby Tuesday and Wednesday, I was so busy I didn’t have time to write.
So I thought, seeing as I am so thankful it’s Friday, I would list the other things I am thankful for today.

Fridays mean a relaxing day at the office where I can get some writing and planning done for the following week.
Fridays also only one day before I am home full time with my little guy.

Fun assignments
Next week I am going to Marble Slab Creamery in downtown Toronto. I am going to create my own ice cream flavour, which will be available at the store for the month of May. In June, I will find out how many people enjoyed the flavour of ice cream I created. I also get to interview the owner of the creamery to learn all about ice cream. How exciting and fun is that?


We get to sleep in. My little guy and I have to get up at around 5 a.m. Monday to Friday. On the weekend, he gets to sleep in to what would likely be his normal wakeup time of about 7:30 a.m.
Weekends also mean there is no real rushing in the morning. We play in bed, we don’t rush out of our pajamas, we play outside, we play inside, we read, we colour, we have fun.


It’s supposed to be in the double digits and sunny this weekend. Bring on spring.

Friends and family
We are off to visit an old friend and then have a sleepover at my parents. It might mean pancakes with real maple syrup in the morning and a long, hot shower while the baby plays with Nana and Popa.

My boss did a nice thing for me. I received a thank you letter for an article I wrote about pottery and another that offered thanks to freelancer, Maria Tzavaras, who wrote a piece about heritage trees. I received word that Maria and I won best online series for a three-part series we did at Christmas. I ‘met’ a woman who made my day when I apparently made her’s.

It’s been a good week, sick baby or not.

Monday, April 5, 2010

Just Show A Little Respect

I appreciate the fact ‘times are a’changin’.’

However, I also think respect and courtesy shouldn’t disappear or hide when you are among friends.

We have a basketball net at the end of our driveway. The neighbourhood kids use the basketball net. (I think the kids should ask if it’s OK to use it rather than just start playing, but apparently I am alone in this view).

So this weekend, the baby and I are playing in his new favourite toy – my car – when I hear a basketball being dribbled down the street. I watch as a neighbourhood teen and his friend start shooting hoops. I also watch as they move the net to a position more to their liking.

As the baby and I exit the car, I see one of the boys hanging off the net. Now the basketball net is one of those portable ones. It isn’t meant to withstand danglers, particularly tall and skinny ones or short and fat ones.

I say hello to the boys at the end of my driveway and ask them to be careful with the net, which they confirm they will be.

As the baby and I head off to the park, I see the ball heading toward the cars and I also see one of the boys pick up this long pole from our property and lower the net.
When we come back, the boys are gone.

Yesterday, my husband noticed the backboard, made out of plastic, is broken, a giant chunk of it lying on the net’s base.

I am annoyed.

If you using something that is not yours, treat it – and the owners – better than you would treat your own things.

I understand the initial reaction when something unpleasant happens is to run away. We all have that feeling. However, one hopes the better part of you steps forward, admits you have done wrong and offers to replace the thing you have broken.

This, of course, didn’t happen.

As I didn’t see the event happen, I can’t accuse the neighbour of breaking the net. However, I think we can go to his house and ask if he knows anything about it. If he says no, we will have to leave it at that. If he says yes, we can talk about respect.

Times are different. Respect, courtesy and doing the right thing should be one of those things that never go out of style.

Thursday, April 1, 2010

This Blog is Carbon Neutral

carbon neutral coupon with

This, That and The Other Thing is now carbon neutral.

I found this feature at Kaffeine Addict while scrolling through the bloggers who have left comments at SITS.

Kaffeine Addict’s headline – Make you blog carbon neutral! For free! – caught my attention. I wasn’t sure what it was about so I read the Kaffeine Addict’s post and went over to the linked site –

According to that website, the initiative started in Germany by the Make it Green program, with a goal of reducing carbon dioxide emissions.

The program plants a tree for every blogger who signs up her blog, neutralizing that blog’s carbon footprint for the next 50 years.

There are a few things you have to do including planting the button on your blog and emailing your link to

It’s a neat idea.

I am posting a story next week at written by my freelancer, Maria Tzavaras, about a program in Ontario called the Ontario Heritage Tree Alliance (OHTA).

According to OHTA, when you cut down an old or heritage tree, you not only loosing a tree that has seen a community’s history, but the potential to reduce more of a carbon footprint.

It’s the leaf count on a tree that matters. A small tree may have 50 leaves, while a large tree has 50,000.

So while I feel great my blog now has a tree in its name, there is much we still need to do to preserve this wonderful world for our children.