It’s a Time Warp, Clever Girl, and a Web We Weave

It’s a time warp, clever girl, and a web we weave, the stories from in and around the Carr house for the last weeks of the summer and the first of the fall.

I don’t know why a lyric from the popular Rocky Horror Picture song, “Time Warp” jumped into my head today, other than I suppose I was thinking about getting older and life in general. The line is, “Time is Fleeting”, and although the sentiment is somewhat true and the next line sums up lots about my life, (madness takes its toll), the truth is, if time is fleeting, I think it’s only fleeting with a little f.

This may seem contrary to some of my blog posts in the past, when I have complained about how fast time travels, especially during a vacation or the a hot summer day, but I think life gives us a natural mechanism that helps with perspective, and I never realized it until this week. You know when sometimes the clock will take what seems days to reach 5 o’clock, the kettle will take forever to produce a couple of dribbles of hot water or don’t forget about the pot you are watching that never boils. This yang to the time moving to fast yin, is what gives our life balance.

Case in point, I was thinking just this week, that it seems like forever ago, that I started teaching and that how a simple conversation so long ago, changed my direction in life – the yang. And yesterday morning a pop up reminder of a yearly calendar entry, announcing my God Child’s birthday. It was 18 years ago that Brett was born, and I remember it like yesterday – the yin. Happy Birthday to Brett-Man, and I am so proud, of the strong, confident and smart talented man you have become.

Duck off
When I was in my teens, I will admit I learned how and when to swear. I don’t remember ever getting in trouble for doing so, but I am sure I must have. We used to cleverly reverse the first letters of a two-word statement, as in, “Too mucking Futch” and sometimes get away with inappropriate statements at certain times. I remember hanging out with a good friend and his aunt and uncle having a conversation about that, and his aunt jumping into the conversation, attempting to pull off the reversal, and blowing it in front of us impressionable teens, and us just laughing about it for days.

Jump to an evening a couple of weeks ago, with Nathalie and I sitting on the couch downstairs, and the girls upstairs fighting about something. Having witnessed a number of these types of exchanges up close, both of us, from our comfortable seats watching TV, did nothing to interject. They ALWAYS sort it out themselves. That is until we heard the little one, get increasingly upset, and end with a very loud and clear, “Don’t touch me, just F@#$ OFF!”

Now, never ones to hide our own language around the house, it is clear that we are both somewhat to blame for Julia’s choice in words, but of course, this was the wrong way for a 9 year old to express her displeasure with her sister, so up goes Nathalie. After the top stair announces Mommy’s appearance with a little creak, the scream from Jordyn says it all, “She’s coming!” The next very important parental question has to be, how do you yell at a child that is trying hard to make you laugh? With her head burried under her pillow, and her butt straight up in the air, like an ostrich in the sand she says’, “Please don’t hurt me Mumma!” Well, maybe next time we will discipline.

Itsy Bitsy
Time for another true confession from me; although I am crowned Daddy super spider killer around these parts, the truth is, I only kill the spiders that the girls actually see. I have wished, and shooed and talked many arachnids into leaving on their own accord, without the need to inflict any harm, and have never been caught.

Being the first to awake most mornings, means I am the first in the shower, and one morning the other week, I ran into a little buddy I named Sam, in the shower. I felt giving him a name and an identity would cause him to listen and I pleaded with him to leave the shower before Nathalie found him. I explained that if he were to just scoot around the corner, he would likely remain unseen and therefore keep safe. Other than dropping down an inch or two a couple of times (scaring me a little), and moving around in a little circle, he seemed to not want to heed my warning.

I kind of forgot about Sam, until I was having a talk with Nathalie that night. I asked, how her shower was in the morning. Puzzled, she said, “fine”, then followed it with, “all but the spider that scared the crap of me, but it’s OK I killed him!” I make a shucks face, and she says, “What?” So I say, “I told him to leave and I was so hoping he was going to listen to me”. After the punch I got, I will re-think my approach in the future. RIP Sam.

In closing
We have always been generally positive people around the Carr house. Never had the need to make dally chants or in mirror affirmations, but this week I discovered that at least one of us, has felt the need to make some posters. Some of what is posted, in the way of positive messages, are lyrics from Justin Bieber songs, like, “Never Say Never”, or a simple, “I love my family!” but the statement that first worried me and later warmed my heart, was not from a song or a movie. I am guessing it was inspired by a news report she heard at some point.

Moom's Room
The Writing on the wall

“Never kill yourself just because you think you are not pretty”. I was concerned obviously with the statement at first because it worried me that a 12 year old would even use the words, “kill yourself”. However, in context the fact that she is telling herself, and all who enter her room, that it is not right to allow anyone any power over your feelings, and for that, I have to shed a tear of pride, because my little girl, thinks like an adult.

Off to start my own, I am good enough chant!

Thanks, for reading and have a great and safe week.

Laughing while driving, Customer Service and Birth Control

Laughing while driving, customer service and a great form of birth control, the week that is and was week 15 in the life and times of the Carr’s.

I love driving with the girls in the car. Aside from the fighting times, of which there are some, the girls play and laugh and talk in the most fun way. Today, I had to do some running around, so quite willingly turned it into a complete Carr family outing and somewhere on the 401, I almost drove into the wrong lane laughing at my daughter. Julia asks, out of the blue, “Mommy or Daddy, what is a Chelsus?” Nathalie and I look at each other, a little confused, and say, “Not sure Julia, say it again!” Julia, I can see in my mirror, is thinking: “What are they, new?” and proceeds to over enunciate, “Ch-elll-ssss-ussss”. Thinking it would be better to go a different direction, I ask, “Julia, use it in a sentence”, then she pauses and says, “Well, it is from a song we are doing in choir for Christmas and it goes, in a Chelsus day o. What is a Chelsus?” “You mean, In “Angels We Have Heard on High”, the line – In Excelsis Deo?” You are too cute Julia! BTW, it is Latin for, “God in the highest.”

Birth Control
When our kids were young, I would always offer them out as birth control to our young newly married friends. Of course, I was always joking because our kids have always been incredibly low maintenance and easy to handle in any situation. This is from the ones who have watched them, not from a too close to it, tad bit invested proud daddy, but nevertheless, a night with them would not likely cause you to second-guess having a child. The only reason I bring it up, is a bunch of weeks ago Nathalie mentioned to a school friend, who was having baby sitter issues, that we would be happy to watch her three girls, if she were ever stuck.

Well, this weekend our friend is going to enjoy a festive holiday party with her husband, and she will do so, knowing that her little angels are safe and sound for the night hanging out with the Carrs. Now, they are 6, 4 and 2 so not necessarily at the “large handful” age, and so far it is fun watching them all run around chasing shadows and making noises and playing so well with our girls. We are only an hour into it at this point, so I will let you know if the visit turns into birth control or not, and if I will be scheduling my snip-ship operation on Monday.

Customer Service
I have talked many times about our feelings on customer service and the simple steps you need to take when giving it. It comes down to giving the customer what they want yes, but it is a little bit more. It is doing so without attitude! This week we decided that on a non-cooking night, we wanted fish and chips and we are lucky to have a very yummy place close to us. Arrive delighted to find out that with every adult entrée, you get a kid’s fish and chips’ free. The one problem was that Julia only wanted soup and poutine, so when we ordered her the soup and fish, she was a little upset. Not a big fan of a pouting girls, I proceed to walk up our server, and asked her to make the fries on one kid meals a poutine. “Well I can’t do that, I don’t have a button for it, and have no way of punching it in” says our waitress, somewhat apologetic.

Because you don’t have a button is NOT the right answer, so I didn’t let it go. She suggested, she could upgrade the fries with my meal for $2 and I said great, BUT don’t give me those. Just throw the gravy and cheese curd on the kid meal fries, I will still pay the extra, but give me my fries plain and all will be good. A short time later, our meals arrive, and just like I feared, I get a lonely piece of fish, and Julia gets the biggest bowl of poutine I have ever seen, and when the lady brings the kids meal out on the next trip, she proceeds to dump the 10 french fries from that plate to a second one and presents it to me as if giving me a gift.

I am mad at this point. So I told her that I wanted a full order of fries for me, and that I only wanted the smallest of poutine for my daughter, then she turned and left in a huff and returned, with a bigger portion of fries for me, drenched in attitude, and just a little bit of indignance on the side. I did leave a tip, because that is just the kind of guy I am, but let me tell you I didn’t want to. The lesson in here for us all, is just because you don’t have a button that allows you to do something, find another button that is close enough and creatively modify and understand that in the end, if the customer ok with paying more for their a-la carte order, and leaves happy it is all good.

In closing
I love it when I sit down to write my blog, that I already have an idea or two to write about, and this week, when I opened the document containing my musings from the last couple of years, the first words I see are “Chuck you Farley”. You see, just as I was getting set to hit the big “submit” button on last week’s little ditty, I overheard a conversation going on between Nathalie and the girls in the living room. Now in retrospect, I should have written down more details other than just “Chuck You Farley”, so I could remember in what context the statement was being used, to whom it was being said and the all important who said it. Suffice to say, I do remember it was Jordyn that uttered the all-important question, “Who is Farley anyway?” Nathalie and I exchanged a glimpse, a smile then a laugh and both silently decided that we would leave it alone, and not teach the girls at this point in their lives, the art of changing first letters in words, to hide swear words. That would be just too mucking fuch for an 8 and 11 year old!

Thanks for reading and have a great and safe week.