So this is my 900th blog post here at The Urban Daddy.
A lot has happened in the time it has taken me to write 900 posts here. 3 children, 8 years of marriage, a lot of education and thankfully, my writing has improved too. I’ve noticed that people actually read stuff I have written and I’ve started a professional tax / management / social media blog which has just over 100 posts on it, so I won’t bore all of you with that kind of yucky stuff here.
This post was actually ready last Monday, but I decided to wait until Thursday so I could capitalize on the Thursday Thirteen theme, but along the way I got my ass thoroughly kicked by a flu which has been slowly rolling through our household. My son Stewie started with it - received an anti-biotic – and still 5 weeks later coughs like a chain-smoker. Then my wife and daughter got hit around the same time, Boo had horribly goopy and runny eyes and had trouble sleeping at night. My wife, the woman who laughs off strep throat, had it and tried to rest where possible but both of them still cough and sniffle 4 weeks later.
As for me… It killed me. I’m on day 8, 5 of those days without a voice which has never happened to me before, and for three of those days my head is stuffed and I cannot hear out of my left ear. It throws off my balance. But the coughing is the worst and at times I felt like I was going to herniate another disc in my back. I think my abs might be in better shape after this, to be honest, but I’ve been pretty useless for over a week – fever, chills, sweats, exhausted… I’m so done with being sick.
So instead of letting another day fly by, I am tossing up this post, which is a list of the 13 most memorable posts to me, on this blog. I hope you will take some time and check back to some of the earlier ones to see how much has changed along the way.
So please sit back, turn the calendar back to 2004, and be prepared to read the 13 most memorable posts to this Urban Daddy of his first 900 posts.
1) This is my first post on this blog. Have to start somewhere, right.
2) Linus was born and we missed a major world tragedy in the process. Had to write about it.
3) The re-birth of my blog and my first angry rant at the TTC and other stupidities. I got great feedback on this post and it gave me confidence to be myself online, to blog smartly and continue to point out how much I detest stupidity.
4) My first Thursday Thirteen from way back in 2006. (Loved the templates back then).
5) Owie!!! Our kitten arrived and back then it seemed like a great introduction to the family. Now my kids look at that kitten, then look over at the adult-sized cat on the couch and wonder how that happened. “Did Owie eat that little kitten?”
6) I reposted this speech from the United Nations, an organization I believe is corrupt, useless and anti-Israel and by doing this I pretty much came out as being Jewish – something I had not really done before just because I didn’t feel like fielding comments from bigots and racists. Since that powerful post, and I hope that you do read this post, I have posted more and more as a means to educate people and to continue to stand up for what is right, just and fair.
7) Child #2 Arrives! Hello Stewie.
8) First post about me… I guess in always hiding behind a name, it was easy to never post about myself, but this post changed everything. Since this post, I even got a name; Warren.
9) I posted about the day I completed my graduate school for my MBA which I started 3 days after Linus was born. Work… School… Children. Exhaustion. It was a great ride, a ton of work and an opportunity to finally leave the government for the private sector. I owe my wife and family a ton of gratitude for putting up with me studying while at the cottage, late nights at the kitchen table and for being downright cranky and surely during the process. I also got a ton of A’s and a couple A+’s which I had never achieved before so that was sweet too.
10) This was my first “overheard on a Monday” post where I realized after a couple years that if I arrived at the office before 7:30am, that I could listen to my two neighbours talk about their weekends. I used to tune them out and get right to work until one day I realized they were talking nonsense, something about double-reverse osmosis, so I called them on it – brought in my wife the chemistry teacher to back me up, and from there I had gems for my blog like no one else. These are must read posts, as well.
11) The First Urban Daddy Official Canadian Coffee Shop Rankings. I’m on year 4 currently and have received feedback and Twitter love from all the main chains, Country Style, Starbucks Canada, Java Joes, Tim Hortons and Timothy’s.
12) Boo is born! Insert huge sigh of relief that this one is a girl, and please book the vasectomy appointment…
13) My absolutely most popular post ever. On the Ontario election. My views on this post were 10000% more than any other post, and some of my comments were tweeted along the live election feed of CP24. I felt engaged. Now, however, that total mocks me, as I get closer and closer to it, but it will be a long time before I can reach it again.
Thank you for being along for the first 900, and I look forward to many more posts and some great comments and contributions from all of you.
My many posts on the Canadian Live-in Caregiver Program.
My series of posts on IVF, highlighted below for their critical importance in this day and age;
- Thursday Thirteen: 13 Weird Eating Habits (urbandaddy.wordpress.com)
- TD Canada Trust Panel Discussion: Parental Leave and Finances… Which came first? (urbandaddy.wordpress.com)
- Brotherly Advice: Don’t Piss off G-d. (urbandaddy.wordpress.com)
If you are observing Yom Kippur, I wish you an easy fast, and if you are seeing this after the day has finished, then may you be inscribed in the book of life for another year.
Note: This is a scheduled post done before the day… I’m probably still in synagogue starting to get hungry while asking for forgiveness.
So what does this all mean???
Let’s start with the traditional greeting for Yom Kippur;
“gamar hatimah tovah” — “A good completion to your inscription (in the book of life).”
“gamar tov,” – “A good completion.”
“shanah tovah” – “A good year.”
“tzom kal” – ” Have an easy fast.”
Yom Kippur is probably the most important holiday of the Jewish year, and not a happy one, so saying Happy Yom Kippur is not applicable.
A little more about Yom Kippur: This holiday is observed by the most amount of Jewish people, even those who do not observe the other customs or holidays and during this day, we refrain from work, we fast and attend synagogue services for the day.
The name “Yom Kippur” means “Day of Atonement,” and on this holiday we atone for the sins of the past year. On Rosh Hashanah, the Jewish New Year which arrives just before this holiday, G-d inscribes all of our names in the book of life and on Yom Kippur, the judgment entered in these books is sealed. Yom Kippur is, essentially, the last appeal, or last chance to change G-d’s judgment, and to demonstrate repentance and make amends with those you have knowingly or unknowingly hurt or offended during the year.
Yom Kippur is a complete 25-hour fast beginning before sunset on the evening before Yom Kippur - called Kol Nidre - and ending after the sun goes down on the day of Yom Kippur. There are some lesser known restrictions on this day aside from work and eating / drinking, such as wearing cosmetics or deodorants, wearing leather shoes - canvas sneakers are very common - and engaging in sexual relations are all prohibited on Yom Kippur.
As always, any of these restrictions can be lifted where a threat to life or health is involved. In fact, children under the age of 13 and women who are in childbirth or are breastfeeding are not permitted to fast, even if they want to. Older children are permitted to fast, but are permitted to break the fast if they feel the need to do so.
Most of the holiday is spent in the synagogue, in prayer. Services begin early in the morning and continue until about 3pm. People then usually go home for an afternoon nap and return around 5pm for the afternoon and evening services, which continue until sundown. After sundown families and friends get together to break the fast and enjoy a meal together.
- Yom Kippur: A Day of Atonement (mtholyoke.uloop.com)
- 1,464 hospitalized during Yom Kippur (timesofisrael.com)
- Yom Kippur Greeting – May you be sealed in the Book of Life גמר חתימה טובה (hebrewdailyphrase.com)
- Tips for Fasting on Yom Kippur (coffeeshoprabbi.com)
- Yom Kippur: Tips for Easier Fasting (israelnationalnews.com)
Stewie: “Did you know G-d is everywhere?”
Stewie: “He’s killing you right now.”
Stewie: “It’s his job. He’s killing everyone right now.”
… Pausing for chewing of food…
Stewie: “Linus. Put your fist in the air.”
Linus puts his fist in the air.
Stewie: “Oh, great! You just punched G-d. Now he’s killing your more!!!”
So Tuesday was back to school for Linus and Stewie. Linus entered the ever-pivotal grade 3 and Stewie into grade 1. The boys are back at the same school but this year, the school is in a new, bigger, badder, stronger location.
As Stewie put it, “Our whole old school could fit into the gym of the new one!!!” Yes it could, son.
This new school location also brings a lot of traffic and a plea for parents to walk kids to school instead of driving them which meant my wife – who is back teaching at their school - was leading one of the walking buses at morning drop-off. She had on her trendy fluorescent orange safety vest and was more than prepared to walk the students from the street drop-off through the park and to the school.
On the way through the park on the first day, Stewie saw a woman walking a bunch of dogs – 7 to be exact – and he let everyone know how cool he thought that was when he blurted out at the top of lungs; “Hey!!! Wow. Look. She has a LOT of dogs! 7 of them!!!”
LOL. He kills me. This is the same boy who a couple of years ago wanted a piece of fruit – then fell asleep in the car – and when he awoke the first thing he said was; “Heeyyyyyyyyyyyyy! Can I have my fruit now?!?” He is animated and never forgets. It’s like he’s on standby, absorbing everything and anything until he notices something interesting then he blurts it out. Of course he’s also the boy who on a 4 hour car ride will talk the entire 4 hours…
So after 2 days of school the boys seem to be having fun. Linus has a locker for the first time ever and Stewie… Well… Stewie is not having that great of a time so far because for the second year in a row he doesn’t feel that there has been enough work given to him or teaching done by the teachers. LOL. He’s totally going to say something. He needs work. He expects work. Last year he commented to his teacher that he was bored because all they were doing is colouring and at 4-years-old he felt it was beneath him to colour while in school. He’s there to learn! He can colour at home. Yipes.
Another problem the boys are going to face this year is that Stewie has 2 teachers who taught Linus and already one of them has called Stewie by the wrong name. Another one called him LinuStewie as she realized she was calling him by the wrong name and corrected it. Stewie, you see, already has the plan for rectifying this problem as he told us tonight that he plans on calling that teacher by the name of his other tacher in order to teach her to get it right. LOL. You confuse my name and I’ll confuse yours.
I totally know what it’s like to called the wrong name or to be judged by my teachers based on an older sibling. I had to walk in the footsteps of my older sister who was about as opposite from me as one could be. She was quiet and very smart. She got incredible grades and was the perfect student. Me… Not so much. I would regularly get tossed out of class for talking or laughing, I used to copy homework from my friends before class and for a major French assignment I copied 12 pages out of a French novel. I had no idea what the pages read and my teacher totally knew that and she hammered me on the assignment and destroyed me on my presentation.
I suspect what prevented her from tossing my ass out of school was that my sister was sitting with an average of somewhere near 99% in French so she cut me some slack.
I had MANY teachers say to me; “You’re her brother!?! Really???”.
Yup. More social, and less focussed. That’s me.
So I’m not surprised to hear already that after 2 days Stewie is getting compared to Linus and boy are his teachers in for quite a shock. Linus is full of energy, he bounces from person to person with a smile on his face and he completes his work when he’s interested in doing so. Like his daddy he gets distracted when he’s unchallenged or bored and then he gets attention for being silly and disturbing others… Poor kid.
Then there is Stewie… Very focussed, very serious and incredibly driven. Stewie goes to school to work – day 1 or day 100 – and you had better not talk to him or be silly because that’s a quick way to get on his bad list. Stewie has a strong respect for justice and if you’re doing something wrong, Stewie will tell you. Him and his brother are night and day. If Linus’ teachers are expecting Stewie to be a distraction they are going to be surprised and they expect silliness or incomplete work they will learn quickly it’s not the way Stewie operates.
Boo started school Thursday morning and was preparing us by reassuring us every morning that “Am I going to school today? I won’t cry!”. She will, I’m pretty sure but the school said they can handle it.
On her way to school she blurted out this gem; “Am I having dance class today?”
Me: “No, sweetheart. Not today We’re going to school now.”
Boo: “Am I going with mummy after school to get my unicorn?”
Me: “Yes, dear”.
So how did back to school sound in your household?!?