• Life,  Parenting

    My Youngest Turns 16

    by Holy crap, my youngest child is old enough to drive. She elected not to go write the test today, already having enough on her plate, but could have. Maybe on the weekend. But my youngest child is old enough to drive. It’s crystal in my memory holding her for the first time, her holding my finger for the first time, the sheer amount of hair (with blonde highlights) she was born with, bringing her home from the hospital, and on. It’s not so easy for me to wrap my head around the idea that it’s been sixteen years since that day she finally came into our lives. It should…

  • Life,  Parenting

    Another Child Driving

    by It seems like I enter a new era every few weeks lately. Last month, my oldest daughter (who turned 16 in May) finally wrote and passed her exam to achieve a G1 license in Ontario. She’s held off for the timing to be convenient and she was mentally prepared rather than wanting to rush into the Drivetest Centre the moment she was legally able to. Sets her own pace for her own tasks, my child. No, you should not be afraid. She’ll be a competent driver in short order and I have every expectation that she’ll actually be a good driver with a little practice. The point is that…

  • Life

    A Sad Day

    by One of the saddest days of my life, actually. No joke. My son moved out today. Oh, I’m excited for him, moving in with his friends and getting ready for school, getting ready to start his life. He’s got so many awesome things ahead of him in the next little while. But he’s left home. He doesn’t live here anymore. The only time he’ll be home is to visit. I thought I had until the end of August, but they rented a house and got the keys yesterday. Of course they want to move in. I’m just going to miss him, is all. I should post a picture of…

  • Life,  Parenting,  Pets

    You Are Not a Pet Parent. Really.

    by So I’m not sure why the phrase “pet parent” irritates me so much, far more than pet owner. Actually, that’s not true. I am sure, but that surety actually had a couple of people willing to argue about it with me yesterday, even after I offered a better word. What’s the word? Guardian. You’re not a parent, you’re a guardian. Someone is shouting semantics at their computer screen right now, but it’s not. The difference between parent and guardian is not like the difference between big and large, far and distant, or brother/sister and sibling. Parent and guardian are not synonyms, they define two different relationships. As a parent,…

  • Life,  Parenting,  Philosophy

    Life Lessons From 2014

    by We should always be learning. I’ve learned lots this year as well as others. But some lessons stand out and sometimes because they were hard to learn or relearn. I have four picks for this year, each learned or relearned or reinforced in a different way. If someone is wrong on the Internet, it’s not that important. Rather than telling someone they’re wrong on FB (or Twitter, or wherever), it’s often just as satisfying to comment out loud to yourself without posting. Humans being humans, most people are just going to resent the correction anyway. Make an exception when they’re posing a danger to themselves or others. If you…

  • Life,  Parenting

    Understanding My Kids’ Relationship With YouTube

    by   So lately I’ve been trying to watch some of the YouTube video channels that my oldest daughter is into. I watch them with her, because none of them are things I’d likely go to on my own, trying to understand what she sees in them. This is a bonding experience, I suppose, because from my perspective, the attraction to most of these is like a train wreck: you just can’t look away. Let’s be clear: not all of them. There are actually a small handful I enjoy, although I wouldn’t sit down and watch a whole bunch in a row.   Fun Stuff on YouTube Movie Sins is…

  • Life,  Parenting

    Field Trips

    by So all of my children have different ideas of what school should be, and what it means to be social, and things they should have to do. This is normal and natural, and I expect no less from them, but they are coming into an age where they can actually argue better than, “I don’t want to”. This is a good thing, but sometimes makes discussions take a little longer. I love that they are using their brains to try to get their way rather than a just flat black and white argument. But as a result of this growing brain power, both of the girls did not go…

  • Life,  Parenting

    Star Trek Re-Watch

    by As part of the Days of Geek podcast (which, yes, I know I’m supposed to release an episode of today, but I’m not nearly finished editing it yet), I’m doing a Star Trek re-watch. The Original Series. As in, the series that originally ran before I was born. I grew up watching Trek. One of my earliest memories is sitting in my father’s lap in that old green chair watching “The Immunity Syndrome”. As a three-year-old, the idea of a giant space amoeba eating whole planets was hard to wrap my mind around, but it was pretty cool. I watched every episode of the show over and over as…

  • Life

    New Additions to the Family

    by So there are new inhabitants in the house. Well, not quite in the house. More on the back porch in an old fish tank, but that’s sort of like being in the house, right? Let’s backtrack a little. Youngest and I were out geocaching1 Saturday afternoon and at one point found ourselves beside a small stream with a few hundred tadpoles lazily sunning themselves and enjoying an afternoon algae snack here and there. Of course she wanted to catch some and bring them home. We went through the usual battery of questions—where will you keep them, what do they eat, and so on—and she offered to do some research…

  • Life,  Writing

    Vacation Plans: November 2012

    by So as of yesterday, I’m on a two week vacation, not returning to work until Monday, November 12th, and I’ve got, as one or two of my kids might say, a crap tonne of stuff to get done. Aside from World Fantasy Convention in Toronto from the 1st to the 4th of November, about which more (probably a lot more) over the next few days, I have a pretty big To Do list. This includes: Pounding out some serious new wordage. For every day I’m not at WFC, I’m looking for at least 1500 words of new fiction plus a blog post as often as I can manage. Doing…