Sunday, July 4, 2010

I think I’m driving my kids crazy

How old do your kids have to be for you to stop worrying about them? 20.. 30?
I’m pretty sure I am driving them crazy always being so concerned about them. Is there a support group out there for parents who just can’t let go? Aren’t we supposed to let them fall on their own asses? That’s how they learn.
I don’t want them learning life lessons the hard way! I wanna cushion their falls, lessen their blows. I can’t remember; did our parents do that for us?? I think I found myself on my ass a few times throughout the years.
Today, I resolve to let go of my grown children. It doesn’t mean I can’t throw a few dollars their way…or provide a bit of advice when asked. But I think I’ve reached their maximum threshold for advice and opinions. I may have spoken one or two times too many about excess weight, about health and nutrition. And I know I gave them enough advice about money and saving it. They’ve been far too patient with me. Perhaps I should now return the favour by letting them make these decisions on their own. In fact, how would I like it if someone started giving me unsolicited advice; they might say I walk my dog too much, they might tell me I’m overly concerned with nutrition….well, actually no one can be overly concerned with nutrition; but that’s a different subject for a different day. They might even try to tell me not to worry so much about my children!!! I sure wouldn’t want that. So, why would my kids like it. Yes, today I resolve to mind my own business. Whatever will I think about all day long?

Thursday, July 1, 2010


Fear prevents us from doing lots of good stuff. It's been a long time since I posted anything on my blog. The longer I go without writing, the more I 'fear' writing; 'how can I write anything after so long? won't people think I'm wierd?' do I have to stay on topic?. Who's even reading this blog? Who cares how long its been as long as you have something interesting to say. I find many people in this same situation. The girl laid off from work who can't seem to make herself go to an employment agency, the older man who's wife left him years ago, but won't accept a friend's offer to set him up.'s the culprit.
Perhaps we find the motivation when we're good and ready? Today I finally printed off two letters I had written back in April; one to Rosie O'Donnell and one to... wait for it....Howard Stern! Going with my gut on this one, I'm asking for their honest opinions...well, and then their help. I have quite the portfolio of famous cartoonists and authors to date, who have written to express their appreciation of Flying Solo. Heck, if I don't get published, at least I'll be able to say I gave it a good shot, and the cartoons were good enough to get all that attention. I wish I could brag here about who has written to me. I really do, but to respect their privacy, I will resist the urge.
Oprah hasn't called me yet...but then I've only blogged about her, and I mentioned waiting for her call in a newspaper interview. I have yet to send her a book. Harpo Studios said they don't take unsolicited material anymore. But heck, there's that fear again. What's the worst thing that could happen?!
It's a very quick time here on this least in the form in which we live at this moment. I used to think that there was no point to anything because time didn't seem to exist. But if let's say there was nothing before this and nothing after this (at least in the existing form) then all you have is Now. Why waste it?

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

The Fonz!

I haven’t written in a while. It sure is hard to stay ‘up’ all the time, isn’t it? The days fly by as you drag yourself in to work every day, and the evenings…well, between walking the dog and cooking everything from scratch, who feels like doing anything other than reclining in front of the t.v. for an hour….before bed.
It isn’t because I haven’t had anything to say. In fact, it is quite the opposite. There’s always something to share. For example, the other day, I was standing in my reception area at work, when my cell phone rang. Luckily it was in my pocket…I hate having to make a run for it. I answered it with a bit more of a question in my voice than the usual…’helloo?’. “Is this Rebecca?” the man on the other end asked. “Yes”. “It’s Henry Winkler here”. “Is it true?” I asked, with a bit more of a question in my voice than usual. “Yes, it is true”, he responded. Anyone who has read about me knows that with every one of these types of calls (yes, there have been some), I remain as calm as can be as I am waiting for the ultimate call…from Oprah and Gayle about my cartoons for the divorced and widowed and of course, Gayle should appreciate, for the lone parent!
Going back to ‘The Fonz’....we had a lovely chat. I have to say that he is quite a gentleman. He’s just put out his 17th book for children about a little boy named Hank Zipzer , who has dyslexia. He’s very proud of his books; you can tell. Henry Winkler has no time in his life for Flying Solo; at least not now, but it sure was nice to hear from him in person.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Lonely but healthy

The house is empty and quiet... and messy, but that's besides the point. Music, that's what's missing. I need some exercise. I'll dance around the house while I tidy up. Do you have any idea how important it is to keep active? And I don't mean walking around a shopping mall! I mean regular brisk walking or a half hour of shaking your booty in the house, or even in public if that's your desire. Whatever your pleasure, remember to get daily exercise. You must stay in shape.

I have recently faced a medical scare and I realize that whatever happens to us, we will fight it a lot better if our bodies are fit and strong. And a fit and strong body usually means a fit and strong mind.

I've been a bit of a health nut for the last 25 years. I never reached the extreme, but I tried to limit my meat consumption, I eat tofu and fish once a week, never touch white flour or white sugar, and I force myself to eat veggies. Eating veggies isn't as hard as you think. We've lost perspective on serving sizes. For example, a huge steak that should feed four is gobbled down in one sitting by a single person. A 'serving' of vegetables is a handful of lettuce or ready made coleslaw, a bit of red peppers, brocolli shaved into the bowl, snow peas, oil, honey, garlic, and a few walnuts or pecans. And voila, a healthy and delicious salad.

Concentrating on my health and what I put into my body helps me stay busy and feel less lonely. I just conjured up what I hope will be a yummy treat in just a few minutes. The music was playing, my booty was still shaking and I began to get creative. I cut up a pear and some apple into a baking dish, added frozen blackberries and raspberries (basically whatever fruit I had on hand). I broke up a natures valley granola bar as finely as I could, added some raw oatmeal and a bit of maple syrup. It's baking in the toaster oven as we speak. Who has time to be lonely when you're conjuring? Your mind is focused on doing the healthiest things for your body. And it doesn't have to stop at a fruit cobler. Make a few items for the week. Research healthy foods, like quinoe! It's fabulously healthy and delicious. It takes 15 minutes to cook. Shave some brocolli into it and have it with your favourite main dish. You can even add a few raisons. Look it up, it's full of protein.

You don't have to choose lonely, you can choose healthy instead. Believe me, it works!

Saturday, February 13, 2010

Saving as a single parent

How easy is it to save money as a single parent? It's almost impossible, but, in my opinion, you should do everything you can to save.

So, how do you tuck away money when you're a single guy who has to take a woman out now and then? By the time you're finished paying child support and picking up your half of soccer, and any other activity your child's involved in, your rent is due. And then, well, there isn't even enough to take yourself out for a bite. The problem is, though, without a little bit of savings, sudden emergencies can leave you in a panic. Your car breaks down or your prescription changes on your glasses. Or, if you're an older parent, your child comes to you and wants help paying for a wedding.

Let me tell you my story. I lost everything in the divorce... just like many single parents. Well, I shouldn't say everything. I have a few nice pieces of jewelry. Having those few nice things helped me not crave anything material. I didn't need to get a new pair of pants every few months, or new shoes, or a coat. I shopped at thrift stores. And yes, you can find some incredible things there! Half the woman in my offices look like a million bucks dressed in thrift store finds! If I wanted to take my children on an outing, it would be somewhere free.

The point is, don't think for a second that those lattes and biscottis every afternoon aren't adding up. Do the math. Keep a bag in your car and get a receipt for every item you buy. Add up those receipts at the end of the month, and see how much it comes out to. Cut back on spending those dollars, and voila, you can pay for an oil change, a brake job, and, if you keep at it, even your daughter's wedding. It's a matter of discipline and sacrifice. Forgo the frivolous for the valuable. That's my two cents.

I understand how tough things can be, believe me. And I know how important it is to treat yourself. It's just that it is the greatest feeling not stressing when that big ticket item comes knocking at your door.

If you have any questions, I'd be delighted to elaborate or help.

Sunday, February 7, 2010

young people with no coats

A few years ago, I stumbled upon a young man hunched down on the ground at a bus stop. I decided to go get gas and see just how cold it was out there before figuring out what to do about him. He seemed so cold. As I pumped my gas, the wind howled, and I realized we were in the thick of it. Rather than take my usual way home, I turned the corner to see if he was still there. Sure enough he was in tears as his bus had not yet arrived. I turned into a parking lot, opened my trunk, and started pulling out gloves, jackets, scarves, and ran to him. Ever since then, I keep supplies in my trunk. Last week, I was driving home from work, and there was a young man walking down Hunt Club Road. Hunt Club has no protection and it was windy that day. He had no coat on. It was too late for me to stop, so I turned all the way around the entire neighbourhood and went running after him in the street with a scarf and jacket. I looked like a crazy woman running in the street flailing a scarfe, but what the heck. What was up with that???!!! I asked myself. The very next day, I'm in my car again driving to go see my children who were visiting from out of town. Still in the suburbs, I notice a young man sitting at the bus stop, once again wearing no coat, no gloves, no hat! I still have stuff in my trunk...I yelled out the window, Can I give you a jacket and scarf? I thought for sure he'd be a punk. But so very politely, he answered thank you very much. He made no excuse for sitting at the bus stop on the coldest day of the year with no coat on; I didn't ask. I'm not sure how many more of these young people I will find this winter, but suffice it to say, I have re-supplied my trunk!

Saturday, February 6, 2010

Ottawa Citizen article published!

Did anyone happen to catch the story on Flying Solo in the paper today? I was interviewed about a week ago, and the story finally came out! I hope that this little bit of publicity will help get word out about Flying Solo. The cartoons not only leave people feeling less alone, but bring humour into otherwise difficult situations. I did create this series to help people who are divorced, widowed, or single parents, after all!

Check out the article online:

Hopefully more stories in the news will come!

Saturday, January 30, 2010

Second post

I'll eventually stop counting my posts...The Ottawa Citizen interviewed me this week for a story. The interviewer recognized that my cartoons were depicted very fairly between both men and women. It used to be that women got the raw end of the deal in often leaving them pennyless. It got so bad that the judicial system has now swung the complete opposite way, and it is now often the men who sit in basement apartments, paying child support to women who live with their new partners in nice homes and many together with their new partners make all the decisions about the children. The custody agreements are enforced to a T by the new happy couple, leaving the Dad no option to even keep his child for an extra half hour on his 'access'. It's because of these stereotypes, and the unfair portrayal of men and women after divorce that I make sure my cartoons are drawn fairly for both sides!

Thursday, January 28, 2010

It's only the beginning

This site is not going to be primarily dedicated to talking about life as a single person. I really hope to be talking about all kinds of things we encounter in my day to day lives. Although,being single is a subject that is dear to my heart. Whether through divorce or the loss of a loved one, we all at some point in our lives find ourselves alone. I do also really want to have input from married people. Afterall, you're taking a glimpse into the life you know could await you. Why not talk about it.
My Ex husband was really ill recently. We almost lost him. I can't tell you how scared I was. He's remarried now, and his wife put me on the list of people who were allowed to go in and visit him. We're proud to say that we all get along so well. We've maintained a friendship throughout our entire separation and divorce. I'm not saying it was always rosey...but we did it for our kids. I did it for myself too.
I'd love to hear your thoughts.