Tuesday, April 30, 2013


We got our first Barkbox in the mail yesterday. Barkbox is this cool, monthly goodie box that I recently subscribed to for Sam & Gracie. I found out about Barkbox via the Dogster newsletter. They had a promotion so I took the discount and signed up for a 6 month subscription, to see how it goes.

I was super impressed by the quality of the treats and toys that were in our box. All of the treats were grain-free and a couple of them were certified organic (which is important to us because our guys are on a grain-free diet). Their box contained a Jolly Pets Monster Ball and an Aussie Naturals Knotty Bear which both dogs tried their darnedest to destroy without any success. I put some dehydrated liver treats into the Monster Ball and Gracie must have spent 30 minutes trying to figure out how to get them out (before Sammy got involved). They had a tonne of fun and I admit, particularly with the bear, neither of these are toys I would have picked for them but they really enjoyed them. I avoid buying stuffies for them because they normally get quickly disemboweled but I think that Knotty Bear is going to last a while.

High quality treats and toys aside, the customer service at Barkbox was amazing and I love that a portion of their profits goes to puppy related charities.

This is not a sponsored post but I really really liked it (and Sammy and Gracie did too!) so I wanted to share.

Monday, April 22, 2013

mean people suck

A couple of weeks ago, I saw a post by the amazing Julie Cole, on the YummyMummyClub site.  Please, click the link and go read the page.  It won't take you long.

I was saddened but not entirely surprised to read about her horrible experience with a commenter on her site.  Trolls are everywhere and have been online as long as the internet has existed.  Folks like this, who leave mean, anonymous comments on posts like Julie's are really cowards and bullies.  I bet you a million dollars that whoever left that comment, would never have the nerve to say those things to Julie's face if they met her in person.  Somehow though, it is easy to be cruel when there are no real consequences.

When kids harrass / stalk / bully each other online, adults often acted surprised.  I think that a lot of the time, kids who participate in this behaviour, think it's okay because they see examples of this behaviour in every comments section of every webpage they have ever visited. 

This is no different than the kid who is picked on, abused even, at home (by a parent or a sibling) and who lashes out at school against other kids.  They are following an example that they have seen played out in their own lives. 

I think it's important for all of us, not just those of us who have kids in the house (I don't have any kids in my house) to be good online citizens.  I'm not saying you have agree with everything you read but if you're going to disagree, offer an alternative opinion that is thoughtful, not mean.  It is easier to be cruel and snippy than it is to take your time and express a different point of view in a rational way. 

We don't all have to get along all of the time but I think we can certainly be kind and considerate to each other when we're disagreeing with one another.

Friday, April 12, 2013

sunshine on a rainy day

I recently listened to Marc Maron interview Dave Grohl about his Sound City documentary and got thinking a lot about Fleetwood Mac.

I was 10 years old when their classic album Rumors was released.  You could not escape those songs.  They were constantly on the radio, the sunny tunes, the biting lyrics.  Hearing Dave talk about Sound City inspired me to go back and listen to Rumors again, for the first time in a really long time.

Hearing those old songs transported me back to 7th or 8th grade.  At lunchtime, we used to go to my friend Shari's house.  Her backyard was spitting distance from the school yard.  We could go to her house, climb up the tv antenna and get into her room.  Shari's dad had the stereo system wired through the entire house, there were speakers in every room and the turntable was built into an end table in the living room, very cool to my 12 year old self.  We would put on her mother's copy of Rumors and dance around the living room until it was time to get back to school (we were usually running out the door toward the school when the bell ran).

This sunny little memory of the late 70's broke through the dark, rainy, icy morning for me and distracted me from worrying about the large, ice-covered tree branch that is swinging wildly outside my window right now.

Happy Friday kids!