Monday, October 26, 2009

Making a list and checking it twice

Word of the day: ju-ve-nil-i-ty (noun) Juvenile state, character, or manner.

You know how when you're young and madly in love with the cutest boy in your class and you spend all day doodling your first name with his last name, inside a heart?  You would spend math class getting used to writing a different last name (because who needs integers anyways?) and then geography class colouring in the hearts (after all, you only needed blue and green to colour in the maps; that red pencil crayon needed love too) and then, during history you would add the necessary swirls and curlicues and arrows through the heart.  And then you would spend all night doing the homework you ignored during the day because it was far more important to express your undying love and adequately prepare for your name change.

Well, I have decided I am far too old for such hijinx.  No, what is more appropriate for someone my age is to make faux wedding guest lists.  Actually, I did this more out of curiosity of how many family members I'll have to invite to my wedding.  (I should note that I am not planning on getting married any time soon.  I was simply bored at work.)

I have a large family.  My mom is one of six kids and my dad is one of 11.  Add in partners and cousins and cousins' partners and suddenly there are A LOT of people to invite.  With only aunts, uncles and first cousins considered, I have 75 family members to invite to my wedding.


That does not include any friends or even my bridal party, let alone my husband's family and friends and groomsmen.

Holy crap, that is a lot of people.  Good thing I'm not getting married soon; means I've got more time to save up for the larger-than-anticipated wedding I hope to have one day.

Thursday, October 22, 2009

The Words of Another: George and Michael

Michael Buble: I know this song.  Is this a Tragically Hip song?
George: Close.  It's a Jay-Z song.

-- George interviewing Michael Buble on The Hour, October 16

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

30 in 15

Word of the day: di-et (verb)  To select or limit the food one eats to improve one's physical condition or to lose weight.

A few weeks ago, during my annual physical, I was weighed.  It was not a pleasant experience.  While I try to eat well and exercise regularly, lately I just haven't been doing anything that is conducive to getting and remaining in shape.  So it is time to really truly do something.

The other thing that has been weighing (ha!) on my mind is my impending 30th birthday (boo!).  I feel like I need to reach 30 having really accomplished something or earned something or done something really cool.  So I give to you the challenge I have set before myself: I am going to lose 30 pounds by my 30th birthday.


Healthy weight loss is 1-2 lb per week, so if I can hit the 2 lb/week mark, that means in 15 weeks I will have achieved my goal.  I'm going to start on Sunday November 1; 15 weeks from that date brings me to Saturday Feburary 13, which is a full week before my birthday.  I think I can do this.  Well, I know I can do this but whether or not I do do this remains to be seen.  By writing about it here, suddenly other people know and I might actually have to be accountable for my actions.  I'm not a big fan of that which is why writing about this is all the more important.

I'll likely write about it more but this isn't about to become a weight loss blog or least I don't think it will.  I'm trying to go about this with as few rigid rules as possible and mainly stick to overall lifestyle changes that I can maintain.  And I will likely make things up as I go, depending on what works and doesn't work for me.  Oh, and there will be no diet plan, no personal trainer, no nutrionist, just me.  I know what I need to do, it's just a matter of doing it. 

Right now, I have three main guidelines:
  1. Get to the gym at least three times a week, but four times would be better.  And while there, learn to love (or at least tolerate) cardio.
  2. Be more aware of portion sizes, especially what a portion size actually is.  Simple yet difficult, all at once.
  3. Cut down on the pizza.  This will be a challenge, no question.  Right now I'm considering a No Pizza November, but that might just be wishful thinking on my part.
So this is what I'm going to try.  I'm trying not to think about winter coming up and how I'll want to cuddle up in front of a movie with some chocolate covered almonds and not move for a weekend.  I'm also trying not to think of the 10 birthdays, plus Christmas and New Year's, that will occur between Nov 1 and Feb 20. 

The most important thing I'm going to do, though, is not beat myself up or be too hard on myself if I slip up or if I don't end up reaching my goal.  I want to lose 30 lb, but maybe my body doesn't want me to.  Maybe I need to be a certain weight or size or whatever to be at my prime operating capacity.  Who knows?  When this is all over, I guess I will.

Movie Fail

Word of the day:  hi-lar-i-ty (noun) Cheerfulness; merriment; mirthfulness.

Wicker Man, you are a terrible movie.  Yes, I had a pretty good idea you would be awful because you star Nicholas Cage, but I watched you anyways.  However, I need you to know that I did not watch you because I wanted to see a creepy, twisted, serious movie; no, I watched you to laugh at you.  And laugh I did, because you were as terrible as I thought you would be.

First, we must address this issue of Nicholas Cage.  Really?  REALLY?!  He's the best you could get?  Was your kid sister's hamster not available?  How about an old gym sock?  You know, even Tom Cruise would have been better because he at least has more facial expressions than "possibly constipated".  Can we also talk about his name: Edward Malus.  Edward is just fine, but Malus?  Is that some combination of "male" and "phallus"?  Are you trying to make some overreaching statement about men and manhood by naming Mr. Cage's character after a penis and making him into a pretty big dick?  I hope not, because that would be stupid.

But you insisted and Nicholas Cage starred as Edward Malus and here we are, one horrible movie later.  You know, I can't even go through you chronologically because that would imply some kind of logic in your story and there really isn't a lot of that.  So I'm going to start with what bothers me most: where the hell did Edward get the damn bike?  I mean, he spends the first third of the movie running around the damn island then all of a sudden he's got wheels?  Not only that, but he later feels the need to bikejack a woman?  Isn't one bike enough?  He has to pull a gun on someone?  For a bike?  Come on, that's just being a big fat jerk, that is.   See, I don't care how the doll got burned; I just care "Why's he have a bike?  WHY'S HE HAVE A BIKE? Why's he have a bike?  Why's he have a bike?"

And was it really necessary to put Edward in a bear suit?  Everyone else on the island opted to wear masks but it just so happened that the dumpy barmaid had a bear suit?  Although it was nice of Sister Ugly to have the bear suit as it conveniently gave Edward a way to blend in with the parade of women content on burning some symbol of manhood so they could get their honey back.

Yes, Wicker Man, that is what you are about, isn't it?  An island full of pseudo-hippy women who worship some Earth Goddess and control the men and need to sacrifice a man to get their honey back.  I don't care if you are a remake, that is a terrible idea for a movie...but we already established that you're awful so allow me to continue.

I'm sure you were hoping to create some kind of dramatic tension when you revealed that Edward is allergic to bees when he is on an island of crazy bee ladies who would probably worship the bees if they weren't too busy worshiping the Earth Goddess, or whatever.  I'm going to assume they worship her as you are apparently about worship and ritual and sacrifice (to get the honey back) even though you only have one sacrifice.  But back to the bees and Edward's allergy.  I'm still a little confused as to why he ran into the bee fields after getting buzzed by a few.  I mean, if the little bastards can kill you, wouldn't you run away from them?  As my beau put it, running into the bees is bee-tarded.

Of course, it would have been more than okay if you had ended the movie right there, with Edward being stung to death.  Although if you had done that we would have missed Ellen Burstyn looking like the bastard love child of William Wallace and Dame Edna.  Doesn't she just look peachy?

I guess I could get upset with you, Wicker Man, for showcasing so much violence against women but when it's Nic Cage punching them out it's just so hilarious.  I don't know what I like better: when he kicks Lee Lee Sobieski across the room or when he sucker-punches the chick while dressed in the bear suit.  Watching Nicholas Cage "fight" is like watching Flava Flav and Brigitte Nielsen kiss; you know it's fake and it's a little disturbing but you can't turn away because it's so riveting and when it's over you laugh and say, "That was pretty awful."

However, my dear Wicker Man, if you did not exist, then we would not have the clips below.  And these are some of the best scenes ever captured on celluloid.  For that, I will thank you.  And because I have these clips I will never have to watch you again, for which I am also thankful.

Sunday, October 18, 2009

The Words of Another: Scott Feschuk

But Palin refused to be a slave to oratory or grandiloquence or basic syntax.  She liberated the English language from the rigid orthodoxy of meaning, because in America even words should have freedom - the freedom to appear wherever they'd like, almost as if emerging by chance or random draw.
-- from Maclean's, Oct 26 issue

Saturday, October 17, 2009

October = awesome

Word of the day: Oc-to-ber (noun) The tenth month of the year in the Gregorian calendar.

October has been a good month so far.  It's only the 17th today but lots of good things have happened.

October 1 - I officially became a full-time employee of Rogers Publishing.  The relief that this brought - not to mention the benefits, vacation time and Rogers employee discount - was huge.

October 6 - my boyfriend's twin nephews arrived!  I love babies (as can be evidenced over my cooing and gooing at any tiny human I see) and the arrival of two brand new people was just awesome.

October 10 - two very awesome and amazing friends of mine, Laura and Paul, got hitched.  It was a beautiful wedding for two beautiful people and, even though my ear infection antibiotics kept me from imbibing, it was still a whole bunch of fun.  See, aren't they cute?

October 16 - Where the Wild Things Are FINALLY opened!  I haven't seen this movie yet but I've been impatiently waiting for it to arrive and now that it's here...I don't have solid plans to see it (yet) but I'm pretty sure I can finagle my beau to accompany me.  Seriously, doesn't it look awesome?  (And the inclusion of The Arcade Fire doesn't hurt either.)

Oh October, what will the latter half of you bring?

A change 17 years in the making

Word of the day: change (verb) To become different.

There are two men in my life that I will never cheat on: my boyfriend (of course) and my hair stylist.

I seriously love my stylist, Sergio.  It's so nice to walk into the salon and say I don't know what I want except that I want to look cute and to know that I will walk out looking cute (and maybe even borderline hot).  And he also give the most amazing shampoo-cum-head massage a person could ever want.  He knows it's my favourite part of the whole haircut experience and I like to think he gives me an extra-long shampoo.  But seriously, I get goosebumps.

Sergio gave me yet another fantastic haircut last night and we made a serious change to my style: I now part it on the right.  I have had a left-hand part in my hair since I was 11 or 12.  It was all because of Carolyn Waldo and a Sears catalogue from the early '90s.  Carolyn Waldo had released a clothing line with Sears which I loved and in several of the pictures of her, she had shoulder-length blonde hair, parted on the left and with bangs.  I promptly got my hair cut like that because it was so awesome.  I also drooled over the most amazing clothes she was hocking, which consisted mainly of tights and tunics (some were even off-the shoulder - scandalous for a 12-year-old!) and brightly coloured sashes to wear as belts or hair bands.  (This is perhaps why I have eschewed the return of the belted tunic and tights look; I am scarred by my love of it 17 years ago.)

Now, I have scoured the good ol' interwebs for pictures of Carolyn's most awesome clothing collection and could not find anything to showcase the superb duds or her fabulous hair.  But I did find this from the kids collection she did:

I remember this too and I remember seriously wanting that zip-front bathing suit.  I did have a two-piece suit similar to the one shown, but mine was solid lime green up top with a black zipper and black bottoms with a lime green band.  It was pretty amazing.

But Carolyn's influence over my own hair has ended.  I'm pretty happy with the new right-hand part I've got going on. 

(Okay, I'm still trying to find pictures of Carolyn and the clothes I loved but my Google Image search is coming back with a variety of unrelated images, including Michael Ignatieff.  Seriously?!  Alas, no pictures.)

Friday, October 16, 2009

The Words of Another: Terry Pratchett

'Yes, yes,' said Bethan, sitting down glumly.  'I know you don't.  Rincewind, all the shops have been smashed open.  There was a whole bunch of people across the street helping themselves to musical instruments, can you believe that?'
'Yeah,' said Rincewind, picking up a knife and testing its blade thoughtfully.  'Luters, I expect.'

-- from The Light Fantastic

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Feel the burn

Word of the day: phys-i-cal  (adjective) Of or pertaining to the body.

I finally dragged my lazy self back to the gym last night after too many weeks of not going due to pest control issues, ear infections and telling myself I will work out in the gym at my boyfriend's condo then ending up on the couch watching Jeopardy and Buffy.  But I made it back tonight and it felt good.  No, not good...goooood.  Good the way Barry White would say it good.  I weight-trained the shit out of my muscles.  So GOOOOOOOOD.

I would be going back to the gym tonight but I have been invited out for sushi and really, who can say no to sushi?  But I do need to start going again regularly and not just because my ass is getting too big.  I sleep better when I work out regularly and it just makes me feel healthier.  Of course the weight loss is also a lovely side affect (effect?  I get those two mixed up) but I decided long ago that I can't work out just to lose weight because it just won't work out for me.  I will lose weight, which is fine, but I also want to lose inches and get better muscle definition and not have back pain. 

Although maybe, just maybe, if I work out enough I'll be lucky enough to look like this:

Um, yeah.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Shopping is hell

Word of the day: meas-ure-ment (noun)  Extent, size, etc., ascertained by measuring.

I think the reason I love shopping for shoes and other accessories is because I can generally find them in my size.  Despite my wonky proportions elsewhere, I have been blessed with normal-sized feet; I generally wear a size 8 1/2 or a 9, which I can usually find in shoe stores.  As for earrings and necklaces and bracelets and scarves and the like, even if I don't buy or wear them with regularity, I know they will always fit me. 

I know there are tons of people out there - both female and male - who have difficulty finding clothes in their size when they shop.  It just feels like I'm the only one I know who actually experiences this.  Maybe it's because most of my (female) friends fall in the size 4 - 8 range, so if they go down to a size 2 or up to a size 10, they can be pretty sure clothes in most stores will fit.  Me, I often feel like I should be shopping at Tents'r'Us. 

Remember that episode of The Simpsons, where Homer gets super fat on purpose and starts wearing muumuus?  I feel like I can relate to that more than I really should.

I have recently stumbled upon another blog that is honest about the whole weight/weight loss/being fat/not wanting to be fat thing (her name is Jennifer too!) and she recently posted about women's clothing sizes.  I know that I really shouldn't pay attention to the size on the tag but it can weigh on a person's mind.  Even if something fits me perfectly, just knowing it's a certain size that I'm not happy with is enough to make me hate it and never want to wear it ever again.  Fortunately, I don't buy these things.  Unfortunately, I don't buy these things.  Really, if something fits perfectly, who the hell cares what size it is?  Well, I do. 

I've been exceedingly lazy of late and I've got my gym bag packed and sitting by the door so I'll be back at it tomorrow after work.  I feel incredibly unhealthy and out of shape right now so maybe that is adding to my clothing gloominess.  Life would just be so much easier if I was rich and could have all my clothes tailor-made. 

But since I work in publishing and therefore am not even slightly rich (at least not money-rich) I'll do my cardio and my weights and work towards feeling better about myself and I'll continue to not let my worth be measured by the number on the tag of my pants (shudder) or the number on the scale (SHUDDER).  To be honest though, I've been trying to do this for the better part of 15 years with little sustained success. 

Guess I've got to keep trying, right?  It's a good thing I like tricep dips.

Go higher than high, go lower than deep

Word of the day: mis-cel-la-ny (noun) A miscellaneous collection or group of various or somewhat unrelated items.

Sometimes I have a whole bunch of random thoughts running through my head.  They don't connect to one another nor do they follow any kind of order.  They just are.  And since I'm currently lacking a pensieve I figure this is as good a spot as any to empty the miscellany in my head.

Pat Sajak has the most ridiculous hair.  Sure, he's an annoying little man in general, but that hair is something else.  How does one stay in television for as long as he with hair like that? 

The TTC has increased the fines for rudeness while riding the Rocket.  I would be more okay with this if there was actually some enforcement and if people actually paid the fines.  The number of people I see with their feet on the seats or who don't give up their seats to the elderly or infirm are more than I care to think about.  But I never see anyone get busted.  And how will the TTC compel people to pay the fine?  Ban them?  Or just lock them in the bathrooms at Yonge & Bloor until they cough up the cash?

Everything cannot be gourmet.  Because if everything is gourmet, then nothing is gourmet.  And no frozen potatoes are ever going to be gourmet.

I really want to be on Jeopardy.  I think I would do really well, too.  Not because I think I'm some genius or something but because I'm pretty good at trivia-type things.  But if I did get on the show and did really badly, I wouldn't want anyone to know.  And I would be really disappointed in myself.

I haven't kept a journal since I was 21.  I really want to start writing in a journal again but I'm scared.  That's because, back when I was 21 and journaling, I was also going through my first and worst round of depression and my journal was filled with lots of awful, horrible, hurtful, unhealthy, unhappy things.  And that experience has stayed with me.  Now I'm scared that if I start journaling again, I'll devolve into that person again.  And I really don't want to ever be that person again.  

I will never ever EVER be able to understand how anyone could ever hurt a child or hurt an animal.

Every time I leave the city for more rural surroundings, I find it increasingly harder to come back.  It makes me wonder how much longer I will last in the city, even though I have very good reasons for staying in the city. But the fresh air, the quietness, the night that actually looks like night, the trees and the seemingly endless fields are a powerful draw. 

Chocolate-covered almonds will forever be my Achilles heel.

Friday, October 9, 2009

I do

Word of the day:  mat-ri-mo-ny (noun) The state of being married; marriage.

Tomorrow I will attend my third wedding of the 2009 season.  Prior to this year, I had not been to a wedding since my cousin's nuptials in - oh man - I think it was 2002.  That seven-year gap represents a time when all my family that was going to marry young had married young and all my friends hadn't decided it was time yet. 

There have also been a steady stream of former classmates and colleagues and acquaintances getting married, as seen in my Facebook news feed as more and more pictures were posted.  It's really made me start to think more about my own wedding and I've found it interesting that I don't really care to daydream about it too much.

It seems my priorities lie in the marriage, not the wedding, which I'm fine with.  I do want to get married one day.  Sure, a wedding is expensive but it's also a wonderful and fun celebration to share with friends and family.  (That sounded a little corny but I don't care.)  And I've already thought about some little things, like the kind of centrepieces I'd like and the colour of my bridesmaids' dresses.  I know I don't want anything lavish or big or over-the-top.  But I also know that the guest list won't be all that small because, with family alone, I'm looking at 50 guests at least.  Then add in my friends and the friends and family of my betrothed and the numbers would grow hugely I'm sure. 

One of the really great things about so many recent weddings is seeing what people have done.  One couple planted a tree after the ceremony; another paddled away in a canoe.  At my cousin's wedding on Labour Day, there were no favours on the table; instead the couple made a donation to Mothers Against Drunk Driving.  I know a few weddings that have/will feature(d) handmade goodness.  The wedding I attended in June was logistically awesome: everything happened in one of two spaces and they were both connected to the hotel we were staying at.  The fact that the rest of the wedding was awesome too was also pretty great. 

I think the best part of all the weddings I've attended or seen photos of has been the intimacy of them all.  Sure, if I wasn't there I can't really speak to that but the impression I get is that the weddings were on the small side, were simple yet elegant and were focused on the marriage rather than the wedding.  It's really nice to see people moving away from expensive and lavish and garish and look-at-me-outdo-my-best-friend nonsense. 

I hope that every couple that has said "I do" has a long, happy marriage full of love.

You say "O", I say "Don't care"

Word of the day:  peace (noun) The normal, nonwarring condition of a nation, group of nations, or the world.

So Obama won a Nobel Peace Prize. 

There seems to be a fair amount of outrage and confusion and doubt about this.  I'm not going to comment on this on either side because I really don't know enough about politics or the Nobel prizes or anything like that to make any kind of intelligent argument.  What I do think, though, is that people can be as outraged and confused and doubtful as they want; they won't change anything.  It's not that they don't want to change anything.  It's that change takes time and no one is going to be interested in this long enough to try and make any changes.

Twitter and Facebook feeds will be full of indignation, people will blog away their frustration and tomorrow something else will come along and we'll all be consumed by some other unfairness.  (Yes, I'm cynical.  Deal with it.)  Maybe some people will be happy about this.  All I know is that I really can't bring myself to care one way or another.  Maybe it's because I'm still recovering from my ear infections and I need to focus my energy on that.  Or maybe it's because I'm neither American nor European and I don't really know what winning a Nobel prize means for Obama, other than a bunch of money and his name in the paper for a few days for something other than destroying America by bringing in health care. 

This whole post is rather ill-informed (I'm not even bothering with the Wikipedia page about the Nobel Peace Prize) but if some Europeans want to give this to Obama, go for it.  If it's their money, no problem.  If it seems to lessen the achievements of previous winners who had actually done something to work towards peace, well, let's go lynch those awful people who gave Obama the award.  And then we can form a Facebook group like "Petition to Revoke Obama's Peace Award!!!!!!!!!"  or "Obama Hasn't Done ANYTHING for Peace!!!!!!!!!!!!!!" or something like that.  You know that all those exclamation points will make something happen. 

My generation is smart and capable and involved but if it can't be done in 140 characters or less, it just doesn't seem to be worth the effort.

The best thing that will come of this is it will get people talking.  And I don't mean arguing over whether or not he deserved it but actually having a dialogue about world politics and the current lack-of-peace situation and how that will affect us all.  Obama has his prize and that's that.  Talk about it, sure, but don't harp on it and get drunk and then hop on some soapbox and rant to the bar crowd about the unfairness of it all.  Be interested, try to get informed, form an opinion, be able to defend it without insulting everyone else and respect those who may not agree.  And when some celebrity dies tomorrow, you can go focus on that.  

(Hey, maybe this is the Nobel committee's way of apologizing for hating on American literature.  Now that the President has been honoured, they're pretty much covered.)

Sunday, October 4, 2009

What do you REALLY mean?

Word of the day: doubt (verb) To be uncertain about; consider questionable or unlikely; hesitate to believe.

I’ve never been able to take things at face value.  No matter how simple, how straightforward, how obviously one-dimensional, how completely superficial, I always have to dwell on things and mentally dig down beneath the surface to come up with some deeper (often non-existent except to me) meaning. 

This can be a problem.

I think the biggest reason this becomes a problem is because I’ve been pretty lucky to fill my life with people who aren’t one-dimensional and superficial.They’re all smart, successful and interesting and add quite a lot of good to my life.(This is good for me overall, as I’ve had some pretty awful people in my life in the past.)  But when I surround myself with people like this I really have a hard time just accepting what they say and do.

Like when someone is having a bad day I wonder what I might have done to cause or contribute to it.

Like when someone does something wonderful for me I wonder how I’ll pay them back and if it will be enough.

Like when someone makes a general comment about something that that pertained to me and I take it as a dig at me personally.

Like when friends or coworkers around me are talking in hushed voices and I wonder if they’re talking about me and what awful thing I might have done.

Like when someone tells me s/he loves me and I wonder “Why?”

Like what I have to add to the lives of those around me is bad.

I don’t know if this makes me some kind of reverse narcissist or a paranoid lunatic or just someone with a really bad self-image but it’s not a fun way to be.  It makes me wish I had a switch for my brain and I could just turn it off when I start to get like this, all analytical and determined that there is something more.

I know there are people out there who care about me and want me in their lives and who are truly good and genuine and honest and wonderful.  I'm not trying to slag my family and friends, not at all.  I love them all very much and I'm incredibly grateful for them.  This is just something I seem to do and can't figure out how to stop.

All my life, people have told me that I’m smart. But if I’m so smart why do I persist in doing something this stupid?

Friday, October 2, 2009

I shall be shod

Word of the day:  sea-son (noun) A period of the year marked by certain conditions, activities, etc.

Autumn is my favourite time of year.  I love the cooler weather, the refreshing breezes, the brilliant colours as the leaves change, the chance to bundle up in cozy sweaters during the day and snuggle up under piles of blankets at night.  And Halloween is included in autumn, of course, and right about now it starts to smell like Halloween outside.

I only have one fall fail: I have to wear shoes.  All the damn time.

Don't get me wrong, I love shoes.  I own far more pairs than I really need to (seeing how I only wear about 50% of them) and I often slow down whenever I pass a shoe store.  But I am really, truly, honestly most happy when I am barefoot.

Being barefoot is just so wonderful.  The cool, damp feeling of backyard grass, the warm scratchy feeling of beach sand, the coarseness of rocks, the sharpness of gravel, the smoothness of hardwood floors -- I absolutely adore the way they feel on my bare footsies.  I like the way my painted toenails look.  I like the ridiculous sandal tan I get every summer.  I like the unencumbered joy my feet feel when they are loosed from their socks and shoes and given free reign over any and all terrain.  (Except sidewalks.  Shoes on sidewalks are required.  Because EW.)

Not only have I been wearing full shoes all week but I'm also back in socks.  Socks I can tolerate better than shoes, mostly because I wear thin socks with silly prints on them, which make me happy and still allow my feet to feel whatever is being walked on.  But socks don't work so well in backyards so shoes must go on.  And because I'm back in full shoes I'm also in full blister glory.  Ugh.

Even though it's October I'm still hoping for a few more sandal days before I'm forced into the shackles that are my shoes.

Thursday, October 1, 2009

The (lack of) pitter patter of little feet

Word of the day: off-spring (noun) Children or young of a particular parent or progenitor.

I think I've written about compromise before and how I struggle with what I want out of life and what I think I can get out of life and where I'll have to make my compromises. (I'm too lazy to look at past posts to figure out if I have posted on this before so if I'm repeating myself, sorry!)

I've always thought that one thing I could never compromise on was children; I must have them and that's that. While I would love to have kids one day I've been thinking about it a lot lately and I've started to realize this just might not work out for me.

One thing that I can't do anything about is biology, namely the fact that once a woman is over 35 she has a significantly harder time trying to conceive. This combined with my own fertility issues means I've pretty much got to start trying for babies in the next year or so.

This leads to my own set of criteria for having kids:

1 - Marriage is required. I know there are plenty of women out there who have babies on their own, whether by choice or by circumstance and they do a bang-up job of raising them. And I'm not faulting them for any reason. Heck, my mom is a single parent so I know what it's like. And it's for that reason that I want to be in a committed, secure relationship before I have children. I don't want to do it alone.

2 - Financial stability is pretty important. Life costs money and I haven't exactly done the best job of keeping my finances in order. So I've got some debt to pay down. Then I would have to start saving for the aforementioned required nuptials. Then I'd have to make sure my husband and I were financially ready for little'uns. That's not an easy thing to do, especially in a city as expensive as Toronto.

3 - We would both have to want them. I don't want to force my husband into fatherhood; he'd have to be as ready for it as me. It's a big step and a big responsibility. Despite Hollywood's best efforts to prove otherwise, babies are not just the latest "it" fashion.

It's not like all these things have made me change my mind about having kids. If it works out, great. But I've recently (i.e. yesterday during a rather boring meeting) decided that I can compromise on motherhood. If I don't have kids I think I'll be okay with that. Maybe later in life I'll investigate adoption. But what is important is that I cultivate a strong and happy relationship with someone who I care for and want to spend time with and want to eventually be legally bound to. This is what is really important to me and what I hope to one day have.

If children get thrown into the mix, I will of course be ecstatic. But if it doesn't happen, I think I'll be okay.

My mom, on the other hand...