Monthly Archives: October 2012

Monday October 1, 2012

Lynn’s Notes:

Lynn Lake, as I have said so many times, did not have the warmest climate. On the rare occasion that Katie did want to wear a dress, it was often too cold to go outside in one. At one point, Kate was determined to wear a pretty summer dress she’d been given. I let her do it. Fortunately, it fit over a warm sweater and her winter snow pants!

Tuesday October 2, 2012

Lynn’s Notes:

Our refrigerator was our timetable, gallery, and photo wall. On it were hand painted cards, personal reminders, pictures, and grocery lists — a good slam would cause an avalanche of paperwork to hit the floor. It was like an historical cache of information, documenting everything from first report cards to notes from the tooth fairy. This humble appliance was as important on the outside as it was within!

Wednesday October 3, 2012

Lynn’s Notes:

When a kid is hungry, no explanation for why one should wait will curb the appetite. A kid wants to eat NOW. Dinner time for us was always at 6 o’clock when Dad came home. Nothing was allowed beforehand because it would spoil our appetite. Many a dinner was already “spoiled” because I had to wait so long to eat it!

Thursday October 4, 2012

Lynn’s Notes:

My mother had very few pairs of high-heeled shoes, and the ones she did have were too good to let me play in. When I begged her to let me try, she took me down the hill to the Salvation Army store where we looked through the fancy second hand shoes until I found a pair that were small enough to fit me. Almost. They were red patent leather with a small buckle on the toe — far too stylish to be clacked around in by a child. My mom told me they were good quality — more expensive than the ones she could afford. This made quite an impression on me and I actually looked after them!

Friday October 5, 2012

Lynn’s Notes:

Thanks to my mother-in-law, Ruth, we have always had a costume box. Anything remotely useful was squirreled away into a trunk in the basement — whatever was in there could be sacrificed to the gods of creative expression. When it was too cold to play outside, when Hallowe’en was nigh, or when boredom set in, this box came to the rescue. When we moved even though we had too much stuff, we had to bring it with us — some things are too much fun to throw away!

Saturday October 6, 2012

Lynn’s Notes:

I loved make up when I was a kid — I still do. I had a friend whose mom worked for Avon. She gave us all her old samples — the best gift ever! When my daughter Katie came along I started to keep all of the make-up I didn’t use so she and her friends could play with it. Interestingly, Katie had little interest in such things and preferred to putter about with her dad in his workshop!

Sunday October 7, 2012

Lynn’s Notes:

This strip was done for Loretta Clarke who was one of my dearest Lynn Lake friends — and continues to be so. The two of us worked together on boards, events, and charities. We could always count on the other to show up, work hard, and clean up when the party was over. Talented, intelligent, honest, and fair, she is one of my favourite people in the world.

Having said that — we were always so busy that we rarely took the time to really sit down and enjoy each other’s company (I had my family and the strip; she had four daughters of her own and a career). One day, in the Hudson’s Bay store, we ran into each other. It was a rare opportunity. We had a few moments to spare and tried to have a conversation around the demands of my son who kept interrupting. I did this strip as a sort of apology and to let her know that I care for her and truly enjoy her company!

A couple of years ago, we took a three-week trip to Mexico together. We never tired of each others’ company for a minute — it took all that time just to “catch up”!

Monday October 8, 2012

Lynn’s Notes:

I don’t remember mushrooms being a bone of contention for us growing up because fresh ones were too expensive and canned ones simply disappeared into the stew. Mushroom soup was a staple gravy base and casserole sauce, so it didn’t count either. When actual fresh fungi were finally introduced to our palates, we were all grown up. It’s our children who have had the luxury of rejecting one of the most delicious culinary delights known to man!

Tuesday October 9, 2012

Lynn’s Notes:

Sometimes, the old chestnut command “If you don’t like what we’re having, make your own dinner!” backfired. I found the best way to make a less-than-yummy repast disappear was to offer no alternative at all. This, of course, might result in a stoic refusal to compromise followed by a midnight raid on the fridge. The one consolation was that they would eat at midnight the now frigid dinner they’d rejected at 6!

Wednesday October 10, 2012

Lynn’s Notes:

I swore I wouldn’t raise my children in front of a television. I said daytime t.v. was a bad influence and a waste of time. Then I bore children — and I blessed the channels that brought us the likes of Mr. Rogers, Polka Dot Door, and Sesame Street. I knew when these shows were coming on, I memorized their theme songs and I encouraged my offspring to partake. I learned that the media sometimes does have a message; Moms, take a break when you can and don’t feel guilty about it!

Thursday October 11, 2012

Lynn’s Notes:

I used cloth diapers for my first child and was proud of myself for doing so. I breast fed, made my own baby food, and sterilized everything. I followed guidelines and kept a diary of how much Aaron ate, when he slept, and for how long. I was going to be the perfect mom! Then when Katie was born, I relaxed — I did what felt right and was safe and made sense. I learned that there’s no such thing as the perfect mom, or the perfect kid — you just have to do what works for both of you.

Friday October 12, 2012

Lynn’s Notes:

I loved making up names. When I thought up the word Grubberware, it immediately conjured up the idea of a party where toilet brushes, rubber gloves, plungers, and other unattractive bathroom cleaning stuff would be displayed and sold. This meant I could draw toilet-related stuff (which was rather discouraged) and possibly get away with it. I guess there’s a part of me that will always want to bug the guy in charge.

Sunday October 14, 2012

Lynn’s Notes:

Having a syndicated comic strip into which I could pour my frustration saved my sanity. In fact, this was a common occurrence with my kids — this simple situation was enough to drive a parent crazy. I got a huge amount of satisfaction from drawing screaming kids with their mouths wide open and tears flying from their eyes. Exaggeration is the key to making art come to life; to be able to turn life into art was a godsend… and that’s no exaggeration!

Monday October 15, 2012

Lynn’s Notes:

My mom had a big yellow mixing bowl, which was used for just about everything. She was an excellent baker — when she made cookies, the dough was as good as the hot-out-of-the-oven cookies themselves. It wasn’t enough for me to have the spoon, the mixer blades, and the spatula — I had to try and lick the bowl as well!

Tuesday October 16, 2012

Lynn’s Notes:

After reading Tom Sawyer, I was convinced that spooks really did come out at night. My dad was no help; he loved to tell ghost stories. The Brothers Grimm book was a favourite of my grandfather’s. Between the two of them, my brother and I were reluctant to go out in the dark until the year that my grandma gave us flashlights for Christmas. We used these to expel ghosts from corners, creeps from closets, and bugs from the bed sheet, until the batteries ran out!

Thursday October 18, 2012

Lynn’s Notes:

Home sales parties always involved a lot of work for the hostess. Because we were all too familiar with the local bakery, homemade goodies were a must: squares, cookies, fruit-filled tarts, finger sandwiches, and other dainties — the ladies who made the best turn-overs got the best turn-outs! When it was my turn to host, I was in a panic. Not having my mom’s cooking skills, I couldn’t hope to compete. Still, ladies came to my house… perhaps out of curiosity, perhaps out of compassion!

Friday October 19, 2012

Lynn’s Notes:

Like most people, I hate to do housework, but once I set my mind to it, I’m a dynamo. I want everyone to go out of the house so I can pull furniture away from the walls, dump things out of cupboards, and leave my cleaning stuff where I need it. I start with the bathrooms — which I like the least, and I finish in the kitchen where chocolate and other hidden reward items can be reached. As a young mom I figured I had about an hour in which to enjoy a clean and tidy abode — before the kids came in and turned it upside down again. It was always worth the effort.

Saturday October 20, 2012

Lynn’s Notes:

Our front door lead directly to the back door, which meant we had a “shotgun hallway” — if somebody put a shot through the front door, it would exit out the back. This created a perfect flue. When both doors were open the draft sucked everything down the hall and into the rooms on either side. This was an efficiency of filth if there ever was one. I began to vacuum on calm, rainy days only.

Monday October 22, 2012

Lynn’s Notes:

When we had people over, my kids often sat quietly at the top of the stairs hoping for worthwhile gossip or a chance to sneak into the kitchen and swipe some goodies. I knew they were there. I could easily have shoved them off to bed, but as long as it wasn’t a school night, I figured, out of sight, out of mind. This liberty came to an end when Aaron, after a huge ingestion of pop, decided to burp the alphabet. The hallway created the perfect amplifier. He was in bed by the time he got to “P.”

Monday October 29, 2012

Lynn’s Notes:

One year Rod made me a set of false teeth that went over my real ones. They were so realistic that you couldn’t tell they were fake. After the kids were done with their door-to-door trek on October 31, the adults would carry out a Lynn Lake tradition called “trick-or-drinking.” When costumed revellers would show up at your door, you had to invite them in for a drink — and if you couldn’t guess who they were, you’d have to wait until the following morning to find out!

Tuesday October 30, 2012

Lynn’s Notes:

The night I went trick-or-drinking, I wore a white-blonde wig, a Dolly Parton-style outfit, and my false teeth. In a British accent I’d learned from my mother, I greeted our wary hosts who repeatedly begged me to tell them who I was. I was one of the few revellers that night who got to do the big reveal the following day.

Wednesday October 31, 2012

Lynn’s Notes:

When we moved to North Bay and there were many neighbourhoods to canvass on Halloween, we knew that one of us would be carrying Katie home. One night, I saw a friend pulling a wagon behind her as she accompanied her costumed children and I said, “Whoa! Is that to carry all the loot they’re gonna get?” and she said, “Nope…it’s to carry THEM!”