Monthly Archives: September 2011

Thursday September 1, 2011

Lynn’s Notes:

I loved my children, but talking to toddlers all day fried my mind. I so desperately needed the company of grown ups, I’d go shopping just so I could exchange a few sentences that didn’t contain “Poo-poo” or “Don’t wanna!!” If Elly had a chance to work- even for free a couple of times a week, I figured she’d take it, even if it meant paying someone else to take Elizabeth. A mom’s gotta do what a mom’s gotta do.

Friday September 2, 2011

Lynn’s Notes:

Homework was a subject that riled us all. If Aaron had something to do for school, there’d be a stalemate right away. He might get out all the equipment. He might even start. But within a few minutes, he’d be miserable. I don’t know how many times we sat and did his work with him- lesson by lesson, page by page. When some kids graduate to the next level of their education, their parents should get a promotion, too!

Saturday September 3, 2011

Lynn’s Notes:

I remember the misery of having to do social studies while everyone else watched “Gun Smoke” so, I was pretty understanding, when my own kids found the extra work to be a chore. Aaron had the habit of telling me just the amount of truth I needed to know- especially when it came to how much homework he really had. This is another actual quote from my son. He did all of his work that night… and I got a “daily” out of it!

Sunday September 4, 2011

Lynn’s Notes:

This has to be one of my favorite Sunday pages. Aaron often came into my room early in the morning and talked to me while I was half asleep. Katie had no reservations about running outside in the buff. Combine these two elements and I had a good gag. I had fun with the illustration- most of all I loved doing the expressions on the faces of the characters. Facial expressions and body language are as important as the punch line and I erased Michael’s sly smile several times before it was right on!

Sunday comics like this one were fun to read when they came out in the paper. I would read this strip as if I were a stranger who’d never seen it before. If it made me laugh again then, I knew I had a good one!

Monday September 5, 2011

Lynn’s Notes:

We started to get real homework around grade three. At first it was simple things- like read a story or complete an art assignment. This was easy. I actually liked homework. Perhaps it’s because we had no TV and, yes, it rained a lot in North Vancouver…or perhaps I truly enjoyed doing something extra. I confess- I was one of the kids who really enjoyed school and all the challenges that went with it!

Tuesday September 6, 2011

Lynn’s Notes:

I never learned this until my kids were grown: never tell them something is “fun” if they don’t want to do it. Say it will be “satisfying” perhaps. Say it will be a “relief” when it’s over- these things make sense. The things that made me get down to work (when I was not in the mood) were threats, bribes and coercion. Then, when I had no choice but to do whatever it was I had to do…I sometimes actually enjoyed it.

Wednesday September 7, 2011

Lynn’s Notes:

When I couldn’t support myself and Aaron as a freelance artist, I accepted a job at “Standard Engravers” a packaging company in Hamilton, Ontario. Aaron attended the Dundas daycare, courtesy of the Canadian welfare system, for which I’ll be eternally grateful! Before his first full day there, we went for an introduction. He was so excited about the toys and the company that he left me immediately and blended in. There was no separation anxiety and I think I was just a little hurt by that!

Thursday September 8, 2011

Lynn’s Notes:

My friends told me about their toddlers’ reluctance to be left at the daycare center, but Aaron was a social kid who couldn’t wait to get into the stuff and the food and the excitement of new surroundings. Later, when Katie went to a sitter while I worked, she was also happy to have my friend Marian’s attention and never made a fuss! These strips show what sometimes happens to others.

Friday September 9, 2011

Lynn’s Notes:

I did not feel guilty for leaving Aaron at the Dundas daycare centre. Not until he was sick! Nothing makes you feel negligent and helpless like a call from the daycare to say your child is sick and calling for you. I was lucky to have an understanding boss. Looking at my reflection in the rear view mirror, I remember thinking- “To heck with all the powers they come up with in the comic books- a REAL superhero would be someone who could be in two places at once!”

Sunday September 11, 2011

Lynn’s Notes:

Caring for offspring was something I could grasp, but feeding was often contentious. Once they had tasted sweet stuff, fried stuff and Cheezies, nutrition went out the window. I bribed, teased and created live theatre around spoons full of meatstuff and veggies. I made my kids stare at plates of cold casserole. I told them they’d never grow big. I said they’d get nothing else until the next day if they didn’t eat what was in front of them and I’d take the plate away.

The trouble was- we lived in a friendly neighbourhood. More than once, I found Aaron and Katie in the lane, sniffing the air and wondering which neighbour deserved a mealtime visit. The fact that they could get a snack next door was something I grew to accept and in retaliation, the neighbours’ kids were often fed by me!

Wednesday September 14, 2011

Lynn’s Notes:

Having Elly do a regular column posed the question: “about what should she write?” Since she was an avid reader (with little time to read) a column about books and local library news would be right up her alley. This was also something I could easily research. I looked forward to talking to our library staff and finding out what THEIR jobs were like.

Thursday September 15, 2011

Lynn’s Notes:

Aaron was very much at home at the Dundas daycare center. As I said, I was grateful to what was then called “welfare” for helping me to keep my several jobs and be a mom at the same time. He was happy with the routine and when I came to get him, he often had to do “one more fing” before he was ready to go.

Friday September 16, 2011

Lynn’s Notes:

When The Dundas Valley Journal accepted my first cartoons, I was thrilled. To see my work in print in a local paper was wonderful. For a while, I did this for free and it was one of the best learning experiences. I was working at a packaging company in town, freelancing for McMaster University as well as doing cartoons for the DVJ. As far as an education in graphic arts goes, this was a course well worth taking.

Sunday September 18, 2011

Lynn’s Notes:

We were living in a log house and having renovations done. A number of workmen, strangers to me, were coming and going at the time. One night the phone rang. The receiver was on my side of the bed. I answered, expecting it to be the Dental “on call” service, but a man’s voice said something I couldn’t quite understand. I had been in a deep sleep and wasn’t prepared for a conversation. “What??” I said. He repeated whatever it was but I still couldn’t understand. He said something vaguely suggestive, but I wasn’t able to pick up the thread. He eventually gave up and asked if I knew who it was. I said I did not and he seemed surprised. At this point, I just wanted to go back to sleep, but he asked again if I recognized his voice and I said I didn’t. Satisfied that he’d remain unknown, he hung up.

The next day I was convinced it had been one of the guys who was working on the house. One, in particular, was a bit of a wild card and I wondered if it had been him. It amazed me to think how vulnerable and anxious I felt, even though the call had been clumsy and short. Somebody was “watching” me in an unhealthy way and it made me nervous and wary until the project was over and the strangers were gone. I tried to imagine what someone who had been seriously threatened would feel and how long, if ever, they would take to get over it.

Tuesday September 20, 2011

Lynn’s Notes:

My friend, Audrey, was as nonchalant as could be when it came to delivering her baby. It was her husband who panicked! When she said she thought it might be time to leave for the hospital, Mack ran out to the car with her overnight bag and almost forgot her. Then he backed into a post on the way out of the driveway. Audrey ended up driving to the hospital and checking herself in. We laughed when she said she’d told the orderly to put Mack in the wheelchair for the ride to the room!

Thursday September 22, 2011

Lynn’s Notes:

My first ex husband always wanted a Porsche. Although we never bought one (a house came first) we went often to look at them. It occurred to me at the time that this was not the kind of vehicle in which one could fit groceries, nor would I fit if I were 9 months pregnant. I was being practical… and Porsche and practical aren’t usually found in the same sentence!

Saturday September 24, 2011

Lynn’s Notes:

When I was about to have Katie, it was important to spend as much time as I could with Aaron to reassure him that even though a new baby was coming, he was still the first, and was very special. I told him he would be a big brother, that he’d be the older one and be able to teach his new brother and sister all kinds of things. What he remembered most, however was that his friends said he might get presents!

Monday September 26, 2011

Lynn’s Notes:

I was introduced to the Lamaze method of childbirth when I worked at McMaster Medical Center. Dr. Murray Enkin was head of Obstetrics. He initiated practices which at the time were considered far too innovative! Murray believed childbirth was not an illness, that fathers should be allowed in the birthing room, and that midwives were a practical and welcome addition to his team. What was he thinking?

Tuesday September 27, 2011

Lynn’s Notes:

Star Wars (one of my all time favourite films) was a phenomenon when this strip was done. Every store carried something relating to this wonderful fantasy and Aaron was caught up in it, too. What he wanted was a pet and he said if we got one, he’d call it Luke Skywalker. To me, it sounded like a good name for a housefly!

Thursday September 29, 2011

Lynn’s Notes:

No matter what, your baby is the most beautiful thing on the planet. I remember looking at mine as soon as they were out of the chute and thinking “miracle!” Red, blotchy and crying, they are the culmination of 9 months of concern, protection, discomfort, worry and joy. They are also a grunt to produce. I often thought that if it was an easy process, we might not love them and want them as much as we do!

Friday September 30, 2011

Lynn’s Notes:

Aaron did ask why we didn’t have another baby and my explanation was that we had sold the crib. In a way it’s true. If you have even the slightest positive thought about having another, you store the stuff. With this in mind, however, I have friends who kept everything “just in case” and are now offering cribs and jolly jumpers to their married, adult children!