Have a New Partner? When & How to Tell the Kids??

So, you’ve been dating someone for a while – perhaps several months, perhaps years – and the million dollar question is when and how to start blending them into the family??  It can feel daunting, for sure. 

In my case, I’ve been dating my boyfriend for years.  He has a couple kids.  We’ve been discussing how it should go for a while now but we were both a little scared to rock the boat I think – or maybe it was just me! 

My kids are well adjusted to their current family arrangements – a two family home, with a mom and a dad.  No boyfriends, girlfriends or step anybodies to add to the mix.  And that has been a good way to roll for a long time! :)  

It’s been over five years since their dad and I split up and so, in my case, there was no risk of introducing anyone new too soon!! 

Although, from all the reading I’ve done, and from various therapists and parents, the general...

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Are You Living or Dying?

How have your past several weeks been?  They’ve been intense for me.

It feels like a time for integrating a new way of living into my day to day life.  

The universe has my attention on health and where I find joy and love.

I’ve had, what seems like, a lot of friends and loved ones have serious health threats or crisis’s this year.  Near death emergencies, serious surgeries, minor surgical interventions, all mixed in with some of the absolute best times of my life.  The contrast is stark. 

It also has me appreciating and savoring the highs in life even more than I ever have.

This has all got me pondering that quote in the photo above. 

Every day is a choice isn’t it?  You’re either busy living or busy dying. 

And we all know that life is unbelievably short sometimes. 

So, let’s agree to find as many bits of joy and love and fun as we can in a day, in a week, in a year. 

In a life.

Promise me, that...

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Your Ex wants to change the co-parenting schedule: How's your Blood Pressure Now?

How do you react when your ex wants to change something in your co-parenting routine? 

A several weeks ago, my ex emailed, to bring up the idea of changing the co-parenting schedule.  This was a surprise to me.  I could feel my body tightening as I read the email. 

And my immediate reaction, was to just tell him to go fuck himself cause the schedule is the schedule – there’s nothing written anywhere that it ever has to change.  PLUS, I’d asked to change the schedule a few years ago and he’d just written the idea right off, so I sort of wanted to reject his idea just out of spite. :)  

I was also in the midst of a lot of deadlines at work, so this was just not something I wanted to deal with at all right then.

It got me thinking – how do you react to your ex when he/she bring up a topic that surprises you?  When they want to change something that you weren’t expecting? 

Does your body tighten?

Can you...

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Parenting Moment!! And Yes, I cried :)

So, a few weekends ago the kids and I went to Montreal to visit with my sister – who is currently living up North – so the kids are hungry for more time with her!  We’ve been doing an annual visit with her in Montreal for quite a few years now, I’m not sure how many off hand, but the kids look forward to it and love the whole experience!  Montreal is awesome isn’t it??  Endless adventures to get yourself into :)  Even for kids!

Anyways, we were having a great time, and found ourselves in the Botanical Gardens in Montreal after a late breakfast on Sunday.  This had been something that was discussed with the kids and everyone seemed good to go! 

However, the minute we had got past the ticket counter and started walking around, one of my daughter’s says ‘when are we having lunch, I’m hungry’ and my son says ‘I’m too tired to walk, let’s go back to the hotel’…

...

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Stop Searching – You are the One You’ve Been Waiting For

I was on a retreat a month ago that changed my life forever.

It was called ‘Seduction of Spirit’ and is put on by the Chopra Center, which was founded by Deepak Chopra.  

I’ve been a HUGE fan of Deepak Chopra for over 20 years – I still vividly remember the first book I ever read of his, it was called How to Know God, and while it blew my mind at the time, it also rung so deeply true to me.  Like when your soul knows it to be true, it resonates.

And ever since, I’ve kept reading his books when they interest me and I’ve seen him speak a few times when he’s come to Ottawa.

I have a Civil Engineering degree, so I’ve got a naturally scientific mind and I’ve always loved the way he blends science with spirit & mind/body concepts. 

ANYWAYS, this retreat was primarily a meditation retreat – with lots of doses of yoga and talks with different mind/body teachers and researchers.  It was also in Sunny...

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Seeing Beyond the Shitty Situation

Let’s face it – as your marriage ends and you start your new life as a family with two homes, the shitty situation seems enormous, almost unmanageable, and whether or not you can actually climb over a shit pile that huge appears doubtful a lot of the time.

It’s true.

And for a long while you may not even be able to tell which way is up and which way is down, and if you’ve made any progress out of all this shit at all.

It sucks.  It really fucking sucks.

So, what can you do?

Believe it or not, you have choices. 

What will you do? 

I hope you’ll see beyond the shit.  To your version of a great life. 

Where you have someone to unconditionally love you and be your cheerleader in life.  To raising well adjusted and resilient kids.  Having the freedom to travel and vacation more often.  Those are just a few of mine :) 

Let that dream be your fuel, when you don’t think you have anything left in the tank.

And...

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Co-Parenting in Action: The story of the Printer

This photo is of my ex’s printer, in my front entrance.  The story of how it got there is why I am so grateful for my ex and his willingness to co-parent as reasonably and lovingly as possible, for the sake of the kids.

Last week, one of my daughter’s came home from school and announced that she had a project she HAD TO FINISH that night.  To complete the project she needed to print off a few things. 

Doh.  My printer has been out of ink for AGES.  So, printing anything off wasn’t going to be as easy as pie.

So, I tell her this, and she immediately says – we can just go to Daddy’s place and print the pictures off there.

:)  Not wanting to put words into my ex’s mouth (..like presuming he’d say no and that we should just go out to buy new printer cartridges), I figure I’ll txt him and see if this is possible.  Cause I figured it probably was the easiest way to get things printed. 

Since he...

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Get Unstuck by changing Your Perspective (Hint: Getting out in Nature Helps!)

Let’s face it – we all have days when we just want to keep our head in the sand, pull up the blankets in bed and stay there all day.  When it all looks too daunting to bother.  This is always when we are in dire need for a change in perspective.

Whether we want to admit it or not :)

Since this weekend is Thanksgiving in Canada, I’ve had my fair share of being outside and enjoying the leaves changing colour recently.  Going for a hike or just walking around a park, it’s amazing the way the landscape changes based on the season, and fall is one of my favourite seasons!

The enormity of it all always blows my mind – the look offs with their vistas, the beach looking out into an endless ocean.  The smallness of you and me.  It’s breathtaking.

Get your head out of the sand, out of your own problems, and look around – nature is spectacular!

And for me, it is a continual reminder that the world goes on – through good...

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Separation/Divorce & Parenting: Sleep is Key to Success!

Sleep.  Yes, I’m serious.

No matter where you are on your Separation/Divorce path right now, your life will improve with more sleep!  Just try it.

Your parenting will also improve with more sleep.  It’s a win-win.  It’s almost like magic.

On my worst days, which are usually around the end of the week, when I’m completely exhausted from work, and I’m kicking myself for not getting as much done as I had planned at the beginning of the week.  And I also need to dig deep, to somehow find patience for the kids, this insanity is always because I’m low on sleep.

And getting enough sleep is certainly a struggle with a million other priorities, absolutely, unquestionably.

However, I have actually consciously gotten a solid 8 hrs of sleep a night, for say, a week at a time, and my life improves.  And so will yours.  Try it for a week.  Even just commit to a certain number of nights a week, where you’ll make...

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Separation and Divorce: An Opportunity to Declutter Your Life!

When you're in the early months or years after Separation or Divorce – decluttering and minimizing your life is a must!  Your life depends on it.

When my ex and I had first separated several years ago, I remember feeling completely overwhelmed by the way my family life had changed in such a short period of time.  I had never lived on my own before, and while I’d call myself very independent, it was amazing to me how much I had to learn or relearn to completely run a household on my own.  Not to mention the mountains of emotional baggage I needed to sort through at some point.

At my most overwhelmed, I remember making a mental list - while I lay on my bedroom floor - of all the things I HAD to do to keep my life running.  The bare minimum.  Just the things required to ensure that what was left of my life wouldn't implode.  I had to work.  I had to feed the kids.  I had to do whatever was required to ensure the kids were...

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