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Kids Today

Recently I have found myself in conversation with other parents discussing the parties that seem to happen at the park near our house.  We have to walk through this park to take our children to school which is adjacent to the park.  In the warmer months the parties at the park are constant, if it is a good weather night you can hear the teenagers laughing or shouting all around being noisy teenagers.  The biggest thing about these parties in the park is that they don’t just involve happy go lucky teenagers.  They also involve lots of drinking, some screaming and occasionally a fight or two breaks out. The aftermath of these parties is broken bottles and trash in the park and on the school yard.

Sadly some of these teenagers once attended our children’s school, and they seemed to have forgotten how sad they were when they couldn’t play on the basketball court because of broken glass. We don’t let our children play in the park in bare feet because we never know what we will find buried in the sand.

When talking to other parents we always seem to get stuck on what can we do about it? Other than call the police when the parties go on and on, really there isn’t much we can do, or can we?

I am sure I get this line from my own parents, but honestly do the parents of these teenagers know where their children are?  I for one hated that I had to check in with my parents back in the day of no cell phones. I had to call when I got to my friends house, or check in if I was running late. I must have known where every payphone in Ottawa was and had a pocket full of quarters just in case.  So what can we do, really?

We can make sure that our own children do not become the teenagers having a party in the park. We can start by teaching them now that this is unacceptable and offering them instead somewhere that they can bring their friends and hang out. No, there won’t be any alcohol for minors but we do hope that by giving them a cool and safe place to be they will make the right choices when they are older to not hang out and party at the park.  We can teach them now that it is not acceptable to be out until 3am as a teenager. We can teach them responsibility and proper behavior so that in the next few years when they do become teenagers, they may just remember what we have said.

In addition to that we need to take responsibility for our children as teenagers, we need to know where they are. It is so much easier today with cell phones than it was 25 years ago, you can know where your child is, you can make sure that your child is at home at 3am or at his/her friends house, we do have the means to do it.

Let’s take back the park. Take back our children as teenagers. Teach them now while they are young.

Such a great brother!! Played with his sister at recess again today #love Birthday Girl!!! Six today, oh my...

Categories: Kids

There once was a Boy

There once was a boy, who lived in Montréal. When he was ten when his father passed away. When he was thirteen he got special permission to leave school and go to work. He started working in a Bank, he was the runner. He went from office to office delivering files and mail. Without this job there would have been no food to eat. This same boy, although thirteen, had no front teeth. He was hit by a car in an alley in Montréal and although money was given from insurance it was better used for food instead of teeth.

One of the biggest reasons I wanted to become a photographer at a young age of twelve is because there were very few photos of my parents,  and then again very few of myself and my eldest sister. You just didn’t spend money on photographs it was deemed frivolous, or for the elite. I chose early on to be the one to document our family. It was a gift I was given and I feel I have used well over the years.  My Dad as one photo of himself and his younger brother when they were quite little and a photograph of his parents when his Mother was pregnant with him and last but not least a photo of his whole family. That is all.

When one of my Dad’s sisters saw J this past July, she commented on how much he looked like my Dad when he was younger. She asked if I wasn’t shocked. I replied, how could I be, Dad has no photos of himself, do you?? She does apparently have photos of him, but has not offered them up.  Another Aunt-in-Law in going through photos found one of my Dad and realized that he should have it and brought it when they met up for a celebration this past summer.

This is my Dad.

This photo was taken in July of 1951, a few months before his thirteenth birthday. His last summer before he had to quit school and go to work.


And this is J. This past summer, August 2011 at the age of eight. He wouldn’t smile for me even though he knew I wanted to try to replicate the photo. I didn’t have a cat or a dog to sit on his lap, in fact we are at Saunders Farm enjoying summer and letting the kids just be kids.

He and my Dad came from the same mold. The same stock. They act alike, they think alike and when things get really crazy, they finish each others sentences.  There are no questions of who J takes after, it is not me or Hubby, it is his Grandfather, through and through.

I couldn’t be more proud that J will grow up to be just like Dad. I know he will and does have his own quirks and traits, but in truth, if he going to take after someone why not someone who has worked hard for 61 years. Someone who has been there for me, no questions asked for 41 years.  I couldn’t be more proud of both of them.


Categories: Family, Kids, Photography

Back to School 2011

J and Apple headed back to school. J last week and Apple this week. So we had two first days to celebrate.

Unfortunately J wasn’t in the mood for photos, I think he was a bit nervous for first day. At his school they have to all cram into the gym and find their name on a list under the teachers name, not the best scenario to start the new year. He has to go not knowing who his teacher is or who is in his class. It can lead for a very disappointed first day. Thankfully, it all worked out and the new Principal is looking to changing things up for next year.  There has to be a better way to start the school year off.

Apple on the other hand knew who her teacher was going to be and went in to meet her last week. So she was ready and primed for the first day.
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Off she went without a look back to Mom and Dad who were waiting by the fence.  Then she listened to her instructions from her teacher, with the look of… ok just tell me so I can go and play, thanks.

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As Hubby said before we left for school yesterday, ‘this is it, all of our kids are at school and they will never again have the freedom they have had, they will always have to be at school or at work forever.’ Of course I did respond that they could become millionaires and take care of Mom and Dad in their old age and never have to work again… there is hope…

Categories: Kids, School