I now know how Mr. Potato Head came to be.


For the love of potatoes.

You know how kids are. They go through phases where “this is my my most favourite toy ever!”, and nothing else will do. L has one of those – it’s her Lamby. It looks like this guy, except it’s now a permanent shade of dirt grey and probably full of more germs and bacteria than I care to admit to.

While she hasn’t given up  her Lamby (and I doubt she ever will), she has found a new love. A potato. Sadly, I wish I were referring to Mr. Potato Head, but I’m not. I’m talking a plain old dirty potato. She found one in the potato bag the other day and has had it ever since. She carries it around with her, she puts it into her pot and stirs it to make what I can only imagine is potato soup (which I then have to pretend to eat a bazillion effin’ times a day), she lays on the floor and hugs it and cuddles it, she asks to take it to bed, and she cries when we try to put it back in the potato bag.

WTF. Seriously. It’s a potato.


I fear this might end up being her first science lesson.

Will she freak out when the skin starts to get all wilted and squishy? What will she do when it starts growing eyes? I could put it in water and show her how it grows, but I think she’s too young to understand that – she just wants to cuddle the damn potato! What will she do when it starts to rot and I have to toss it? Will she notice if I replace it with another potato? If I steal it from her, does that make it a “hot potato”?  Holy hell, I can’t believe this is even an issue…

I’m feeling this way about a goddamn potato. I can’t imagine what’d I’d be feeling if it were a pet!

This must be how Mr. Potato head was invented. Some freakin’ parent realized their kids pet potato was about to rot and give them diseases, so he made it into a toy. That’s got to be the only explanation.

Speaking of Mr. Potato Head, did I ever tell you all the story about how he almost murdered my Mother? That’s a whole other blog post…

(If you haven’t already, I’d love it if you could vote for me on Top Mommy Blogs. Like, I’d love you enough to share my chocolate bar with you….maybe. Just click the Top Mommy Blog button to the right –> and that’s it! One click = one vote. You don’t have to do anything else.)


Hypocritical Health Hurdles – the 2nd visit.

I’m a little behind on filling you all in with how my second visit with Registered Dietitian Sarah Dunphy-Morris went.

I had my second visit with her on Friday, August 30th. This was the day that I gave her my 3-day food log, and was nervous about what she’d say about it.

I logged everything I ate on Thursday August 22nd, Saturday August 24th and Monday August 26th. I had to pick three days that were not consecutive and included at least one day that fell on a weekend. Having a visual for every cookie I ate, every latte I drank (with shots of chocolate in them of course), and every breakfast I skipped was kind of an eye opener. But I followed the rules and didn’t try to modify a single thing for those three days, because she needed to see an accurate starting point in order to make better recommendations.

Our second visit was approximately 30 minutes long, and I would say it was kind of divided into two halves. The first half of it was going over my food diary, and the second half was education based – teaching me about label reading.

When I sat down in her office on Friday morning, I was prepared for the judgment. My hackles were up and I was ready to defend every crappy thing I ate. I didn’t have to though, as once again there was no judgement and I wasn’t lectured. We sat down together and she went through the list with me, simply asking for clarification on what I had written down. She asked about approximate portion sizes for each item consumed, and the times of day that I consumed them. For example, she confirmed that it was actually butter on my dinner roll and not margarine, asked if it was milk or cream in my iced lattes, and whether my pasta was white, whole wheat or rice. I was also pretty vague on some of the things I wrote down. My “glass of juice” could have been any size, so she made me clarify how big the glass was I was drinking from. For all she knew I could have been drinking out of a bucket, just like the drinks they serve on the beaches in Thailand.

Buy all the fixings for your drink in a bucket, fill up that bucket with the stuff provided, drop a straw inside and the bucket becomes an instant drinking glass!

Buy all the fixings for your drink in a bucket, fill up that bucket with the stuff provided, drop a straw inside and the bucket becomes an instant drinking glass!

Once she had all of the details clarified, she explained that now she would be able to enter all of this information into her computer program that analyzes everything. The results of the food diary will be given to me on visit number three, once she’s got the data and the cold hard facts in front of her. I’m actually kind of glad that we’re taking baby steps, because I think if I was overloaded with information and changes all at once, I’d start to become overwhelmed and quit.

The second half of our visit was all about label reading. I learned to compare two similar products and pick the one that is the overall better choice. I now know to look at the portion sizes and make sure they are comparable to each other, and to look at the % daily value. I also learned the 5% and 15% rule – Keep the “bad” things under 5% and the good things above 15%. Well I’m paraphrasing a lot, but basically if things I want to cut back on (ex. sodium, sugars, trans fats) are under 5% of the daily % value on the label, then it is considered not too bad. If things I want to increase (ex. fibre, vitamins, calcium) are above 15% then it is considered good. But if it had 20% daily value of sodium, and only 2% daily fibre, and not a lot of other good values, then I might want to compare and make a better choice.

I was only half looking at labels before. I would look at two crackers, and see which had more fibre, which had less sodium and pick the better of the two not knowing anything about percentages. Now I have some more to look out for at the grocery store.

So basically from the labels I have to look at 5 things:

1) Serving size. Compare the serving size on the label with what I ACTUALLY eat. I probably eat 3-4 times what the portion size says I should have.

2) Calories. Pretty self explanatory.

3) Percent daily value. Tells me if there is a little or a lot of a certain nutrient in a food.

4) Get less of these things: Sodium, Cholestorol, Saturated and Trans fats.

5) Get more of these things: Fibre, Calcium, Iron, Vitamins (A and C the most I think).

This image from the Government of Canada is very similar to the one I was given.

This image by the Government of Canada (Health Canada) is very similar to the one I was given.

Overall, I think things are going really well so far. This week my homework is to read the labels when I grocery shop and let her know anything that has surprised me, or any changes I made in my purchases because of my findings. I’m taking baby steps, but I think that will be better in the long run. Small changes are easier to manage than big ones, and so far I’m doing alright. If I had to change a million things at once, I’d probably cry and quit.

This, I can do.