the nonchalantdad: sex, sex, sex, sex, sex

My wife subscribes to many magazines. Naturally, every now and then, I pick them up and look at the pictures and read some of the articles. I'm the kind of guy who likes to read everything I can get my hands on. Give me a cereal box and I will read it like it was the encyclopedia. So, I can tolerate much. I just like information. But, I tell you, lately I've been getting annoyed. The subject of my annoyance? Sex.
Now, a man annoyed by the subject of sex is an odd thing to hear I suppose. Nonetheless, I'm annoyed. It seems that our media is awash with the stuff. Now, the parenting magazines, children's magazines, family magazines, keep mentioning it. I feel like I'm in high school again. Usually, the article is accompanied by a rather sexy image of people who certainly look well rested, clear skinned, and well-coiffed - in other words, people not well associated with the apparent rigours of child rearing. These articles suggest all manner of ways to spice up the ol' sex life, re-create that elusive first date with your spouse, cook sexy meals, wear sexy clothes (even though you might have just given birth), and say all sorts of sexy things. Some of the more risky articles even give us tips on locating specific areas of the human body. I even read one in a children's magazine that coached parents on positioning.
When I was a child some of these articles would have been associated with the magazines frustratingly located at the top of the magazine rack. Not now, sex is mainstream. SEX is everywhere. You are reminded that you need to be having sex. And, if you are not having sex, you need to be thinking about having sex. And, if you are not thinking about having sex, then ..... well..... you just aren't that popular. My friend, if you are not wearing sex, acting sex, being sex.... you just ain't sexy.
Well, I've got a new article for your parenting magazine. It's called: I'm #^%&*&% TIRED. You're expecting me, after getting up at 5am, getting the kids ready for school, cleaning the house, fixing something, going to work, paying the bills, etc etc etc. By 11pm I'm thinking of a few things, and usually none of them have to do with donning some swash buckling uniform and swinging across our matrimonial bed looking for spots that start with the letter 'G'. For my wife and I, those of you who want to chase the sex up and down the street - good for you. I wish you many happy returns. But, for me, after taking the kids to go pee at midnight (my shift), I'm usually thinking of finding sleep. And, hey, if I'm feeling lucky on am average Saturday night, I might ask my sexy wife if she wants to share some ice cream... and maybe.... just maybe.... she'll rub my feet. Usually, though, it's my turn to rub hers. And, you know what? That's good enough for me.

a sheet of nori a day for energy!

this is something that I learned long ago at macrobiotic camp and both my sister and I have tried it and feel that it really does give us more energy for the day ahead! plus, as I have talked about before, your kids will love it too! I have not met a child who doesn't like the taste of toasted nori...it's really funny how that works! I find that small kids who don't question the look of it are very happy to try it...and they always find it delicious (even for babies in very small amounts).

you can purchase nori sheets just about anywhere (but here is a link to the kushi store where you are ensured that it is good and organic). we toast them right on the stove top by turning the flame down to the smallest possible flame (or it works well if you have been cooking and your grill is still hot) just take a single sheet and toast until it turns bright green and you are ready! you can also do this in an iron skillet if need be...the toasted nori will become light and delicate and very yummy! (you can see the difference between raw and toasted in the photo) eat a sheet a day and I think you will feel a difference.

while we are talking about nori, I would also like to mention that it's nice to have the nori around because if you are like us and make big batches of brown rice and you have leftovers the next day it's a great way to make brown rice sushi! just steam your rice to heat it up and fill your sushi with your families favorites (and throw a little piece of umeboshi plum inside for extra yumminess!)..all you need is a sushi mat, brown rice, nori and some vegetables! instant snack or dinner! and kids like to get in on the creating...it's good fun (and just a bit messy)

good luck and let me know if you find yourself with more energy!


togo - for kids!

I had to comment because I just found about the togo for kids! (yes!) we are big fans and you may have seen our togo in the background of many of the photos on nonchalant mom...did I say how much we love it! so far it has been through the ringer, it is always part of the massive tent that we make in the living room AND my kids jump over it (...on it) regularly, it's also been sneezed on (you know what I mean!), spilled on and much worse (I know...you are just making a point to never come to visit!) but the togo somehow still looks fantastic! so from my lips to your ears...these are a super choice and they look GREAT in your futuristic, swanky, hang out pad...I'm only kidding, I think they are great with almost any decor! here is the basic information and you can get more information from the ligne roset website - the Togo comes in two sizes: baby togo, for ages 2-4 or dolls.. ($485) and mini-togo, for ages 5-12 ($680) it sounds steep, but they are great!



I recently got an email from fiona at kindergallery and when I took the jump to her website I was amazed to see a wonderful idea, expertly executed and I couldn't wait to tell you all about it! kindergallery came on the scene last year and will open your doors to a number of artists that will amuse and delight! and I think these supreme artists using a variety of mediums will offer a great void in the decor of kids rooms, for their certain, very special fantasy sense as well as the fact that they are a sheer joy to look at! kindergallery is located in australia (shucks!) but I think if you beg them they can work with you no matter where you are....make kindergallery a special stop for you when you want to take a moment to breathe and smile!


the Nonchalantdad: You too can win the lottery!

A friend of mine informed me recently that he was being offered the cover of a prestigious (if unnamed) magazine. The people behind this magazine cover victory had sent him a cursory email announcing that he was
what they wanted. Of course, the email was brief and vaguely written - and the biggest suspicion that this was all a ruse came in the form of the name of the magazine. The magazine was named very strangely after my friend's name. He pretended that he was honoured - even though he was amazed that this 'magazine' chose him, without any effort on his part, over the thousands and thousands of other massage therapists in existence.
Which reminds me. The people who run these scams are getting smarter (or more stupid) depending on how you see it. It used to be that you could just count on an email from an 'esteemed friend' in your inbox. The email almost always beckoned you with a tragic story that you just could not ignore, and then tried to gain your confidence by luring you into doing something that logic told you was outrageous. I enjoyed the names they would come up with for these emails. But, even funnier for me were the position titles of some of the people behind the email pleas. My favourite one was a gentleman who was writing to me from a Central African bank. He was offering me a chance to share with him a ludicrous fortune laying dormant in an account of person wrongfully killed. His title was 'Administrator, Adjustor, Communicator, and Decision Person'. Yes... 'Decision Person'. Of course, I immediately wrote this gentleman back to tell him how impressed I was with his story. I was so excited that he found me out of the millions of people on the planet he could have gone to with this story. I gave him all my personal information and even told him where to find my soul in some anonymous locker at the local airport....hmmm.
Now, I've been getting announcements from various lottery committees in certain European countries announcing my winning of contests that I didn't even know I had entered. How exciting, I thought. So far this past week I have won 3 major awards worth somewhere like 500 million Euros. I wrote them emails explaining that as soon as I got my soul back from my friend the '...Decision Person' at that bank in Central Africa I'd fly over and collect my earnings. What a LUCKY fellow I am! My children could now grow up to be proud of me for doing absolutely nothing.....
My son is 5 now and he has shown a great interest in answering the home telephone - which can be amusing when it is not exasberating. My wife and I have explained to him how the telephone works, how and when to answer and what to say and not say. The lesson isn't always heeded. Generally, though, he is good. However, there was the small problem of those pesky telemarketers... the people who are always trying to sell you something. There were a few problems when he'd forget what we'd told him and in his excitement at the phone ringing he'd answer. It wasn't serious, it just made in slightly annoying to then have to follow through with the call - a call you'd rather have let the message machine answer. Then, it dawned on me. Perhaps the very person the uninvited telemarketer needed to speak to was my 5 year old son. So, in order to bridge the gap between my son's excitement to answer the telephone and my annoyance at having to endure a telemarketer I let him answer the telephone while I am with him - and only when I give him the green light. It is a system that seems to work well for him, and helps the family rid the house of pesky telemarketers. Because, if a telemarketer seems to hate anything more than an irate adult, it is an inquisitive child... especially a child with boundless curiosity.
So, now if we encounter a telephone telemarketer I let my son do all the talking. The conversation usually lasts about 2 minutes ... and I always monitor the conversation. The telemarketer asks the questions, or tries the speech. But, with my coaching, my son keeps them on their toes.... until they lose their footing that is. I ask my son to ask them where they live, what their names are, what their favourite colour is, who their favourite cartoon character is, and what their favourite food is - things like that. For the final insult to patience, I whisper to my son to start counting to 100. By about the number 24, which he has slowly and methodically arrived at, I can hear the phone hang up on the other end. The tables are turned then, the exasperation is now theirs and not ours. And, that is how the phone call always ends. My son thinks it is amusing, I think it is safely monitored, and the telemarketers are becoming less and less of a nuisance.
Now, if only I could find a way to get my son to help me get rid of those pesky people at the so-called Lottery Commission in Europe.... you know.. the ones who want to give me the millions of Euros for nothing. If only there was an email equivalent.


happy valentines day!

it was 6:00 pm the night before valentines day and we realized that sander needed to have valentines day cards for school...(ooops..we didn't do this last year in montessori school?!) so, have no fear, computer graphics are here! we whipped up these cards super fast (he picked out the picture and the font and a little wing ding, he likes the ying/yang symbol right now!) we all decided that 'be my valentine' was the way to go, and as we like to say in our family...tA-DaaAAAh!


here are the basics:
you will need quark or inDesign, pick out a photo and add the wonderful valentine message of your choice (we used bauhaus font)...I am sure that other people know where to get a better wing ding, but we couldn't find a heart in our short deadline (bedtime), so we opted for a ying yang, give it a red square background and print into heavy matte paper. glue red construction paper onto the back, cut out (maybe in heart shape?!) and whola! your kids can help with cutting, gluing, looking for images (my kids love that part the most! they want to use them all!), we also added some cut-out hearts that we glued on to each card...

this was much more fun that going out and buying cards, grandparents will flip over these home-spun keepsakes! and if you don't have a computer...cut-out cards are so much fun...you just need to plan ahead a bit! good luck and have fun!


new space!

I have to admit...I am a little nervous to show you this, but I wanted you to know why I have not been posting much lately! (and maybe your orders may have taken a little longer than our usual snappy service) we moved our space down the street and we REALLY love it!! happy as clams, we are back to work but still searching for some things! (we also found some treasures in the move too...) as you can imagine organizing is not one of nonchalant mom's 'passions' but we are getting there! and we've come a long way from our guest house in 2004!! ...with spring/summer arriving quickly from everyone we are gearing up and ready to go!

this is dana in our old space packing boxes...


my favorite blog! bkids....

if you are wondering where I get my inspiration from you will be happy to know about bloesem kids! or bkids as she calls her spin-off blog from wildly popular design blog 'bloesem'. bkids creator and voice is irene hoofs, yes, those dutch really have it! I will follow irene anywhere! and she can take you along too...it's a spectacularly edited trip into truly amazing design for kids...bkids is my homepage and I visit any time that I have a moment.

once in a while she will write an in-depth blog about a subject; be it very special books for kids (that obviously have a serious design angle), a trip to amsterdam (that made us want to make the trip with our kids), knitting (her special hats and booties!) and so much more!

and she has enlisted special help from her friend arounna khounnoraj who craftily executes creative projects for kids that we never miss! I love this weeks, which is a 'found object mobile!' it was really fun and my kids went crazy for it! so click on her blog (often) and you will be inspired to create and just look at good things for kids! thank you irene and arounna! and don't ever quit!