TVO Parents Blog

Last night, I watched Elizabeth leave my house for perhaps the last time.

She's been coming to our house once a week for ten years. Ten years! And now we've put an end to it, and I'm sad.

Elizabeth has been our piano teacher, friend, fellow animal-lover. She taught my son, until he decided piano wasn't really for him. She taught both my daughters, until last night. They've also decided they have other priorities right now. And she taught me

Like many people my age, I grew up with a father who wielded "the belt."

It was brought out for special occasions when my brothers or I were being particularly bad. I only got the strap twice. I can't remember why I got it the first time. The second time I got the belt for laughing while my brother got the belt, for something we had both done. Both times, it was relatively minor. A few swats on the backside. But I still remember how it made me feel.

They just keep coming. It's relentless. You think when your child learns to walk, talk, read, write, that the major milestones have passed and you can relax. No, no, no, no, no.

There's so much more to look forward to (the positive speak), or dread (the way I've been feeling lately). There's choosing and getting started in high school - you hope it's the right fit for your child. There's taking public transit alone - you hope they don't get lost

When I was a kid, I used to sing around the house all the time. It was especially fun in the bathroom, where the sound would bounce off the walls.

Once, when I was a teenager, my mom said, "You're singing. You must be happy." With the sullen sarcasm typical of teenagers, I replied, "No, I'm trying to MAKE myself happy."

Hmmmm....what was my problem that day? I've thought about my comment many times as I've explored what

Are birthday parties out of control?

I love our garage sale. I hate going to other garage sales, but I love holding one. Why? Because we always have so much kid stuff to unload and get out of the house.

Every June, our street hosts a street-wide garage sale, followed by baseball games in the afternoon, and then a pot-luck dinner party in the nearby park. It's a lot of fun and we get to re-connect with neighbours we haven't seen much of all winter. But by far, the most satisfying part of the day is

After making it through once already, is it worth it to become a parent again?

High school graduation is a heady time, for the graduates and for their parents.

My son is graduating this year. At his prom last week, he looked and acted like the adult he is about to become. Suit, tie, beautiful black shoes, friends, a night of dinner and dancing. We parents took pictures and gushed at how they've all changed, how mature they've become.

Grade 12 is a year of great transformation, in part because this is when these young adults decide what