Seven years of blogging; or, have I really been doing this since 2007?

Wordpress's anniversary award

WordPress’s anniversary award

After more than a month of not posting (thank you to Tessa, daughter who even at 7,457 kilometres distance can still get me to do what I’m supposed to be doing but are not) I got a little award thingy in my blog mail—see above.

I am, I stress really am, working on my fatigue by sitting with it in guided meditation, and slippery brain, and self-massage with skin care and compression garments, and lymphatic openings and exercise. I know I said I would post more often, but I am exhausted, and I honestly don’t have anything interesting to say. Sorry Tessa.

So, for this post, which WordPress marks as an anniversary, I’m going to re-post my first entry to this blog. It had a far larger audience than I now have, because I was the Mom Blogger for Canadian Living magazine then, and eyes were reading from across the country. In this post I introduced myself to them:


Mom blog: All about Jacquelyn, the mom blogger


Posted on  by itsbecauseisaidso


Hello. If you are reading this, you are the witness to the very first words of’s Mommy blogger. I am thrilled to be here – winning the reader poll to become the Mommy blogger is on my Top Ten List of Achievements, along with giving birth to my three incredible children, beating back my son’s leukemia, being nominated for a National Magazine Award, hanging on to a marriage for 19 years, quitting smoking, and the rest are state secrets.
One thing you’ll learn about me is a secret is a secret. And a state secret is even more sacred. Don’t ask me how old I am.
I am a mom (I prefer mum – my kids call me “Mummy” not “Mommy”) (when they’re not calling me Goofy-Head, or Boss, or Mummy-Dearest, or Slave-Girl-Mummy – this is only allowed from my six year old). I have three kids whom I am currently in negotiations with regarding their privacy, the parameters of their exposure in my blog, any possible compensation – this is where I start laughing hysterically and negotiations predictably break down. The cat, Angel, who is nothing like her name, lives here, as does Nibbles the hamster.
When things were getting very stressful in our home a couple of years ago, the kids thought it would be good to get a hamster. They actually thought it would be way better to get a dog, but I’m not that crazy. I was crazy enough to be talked into not one hamster, not two, not three, you get the idea. We had six hamsters at the height of our love-in, in five cages. We were told that sisters could live together in the same cage. Miss Jellybean and Princess Lou Lou shared a cage for quite a while, until one day we thought Jellybean had escaped. But how could she escape when the door was near impossible for us humans to open? Realization dawned ugly when we spied a wee half-square-inch of Jellybean-coloured fur. Hamstericide!
Suffice to say, Jellybeans’s piece of fur was carefully wrapped and boxed and shrink-wrapped and triple Ziploc-bagged and put in the freezer alongside Hammy Yu-Gi-Oh, Crazy Connie, Victor and Ooch, to wait for the spring thaw for appropriate internment. We got a few more hamsters, among them Nibbles and Bunny. Sisters. Did we put them in the same cage?DID WE PUT THEM IN THE SAME CAGE????
Read my next blog to find out.

Illustration courtesy of Juli Waller at

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Now, I will aim for an original post in less than a week. Promise. 😉


Guest blogger: Tessa

mom hair
tumblr_bald shot
Seriously, how does my mom rock being bald like this? I think that before she started chemo we were just scared. We didn’t know how she would be and of course we assumed the worst because with cancer everything seems to be the worst. So we imagined how bad it could get, how different she would look, how we would totally lose the mom we were used to… But now that she’s almost finished chemo she’s still mom. Look at her, she’s gorgeous. Yes, she was sleepy but not every day. She felt sick, her hands and feet were awful and red burning and uncomfortable, and it was bad, but not the worst. I guess most things in life are luck-of-the-draw. We got unlucky with cancer but we could have had it way worse, and a lot of people do. I know that a big part of why cancer seems so much less scary now is because of how strong my mom is. Everyone says it but I don’t think a lot of people understand that strong isn’t having something bad happen and saying “it’ll all be good”. It’s waking up at three in the morning when your daughter sleepwalks to invite her to sleep in your bed in case she ends up sleeping through her alarm the next day. It’s making dinner, it’s telling your kids that you will really be okay and live til you’re eighty, and it’s taking off your hat in the movie theatre when you have no hair, because it doesn’t matter.
If I had any other mother I wouldn’t get out of bed in the morning, but her strength is contagious. It’s there every day, just look at her.

Meet-a-Blogger Monday

And the winner of the “Seriously folks, how much do you want to know?” readers poll is—Jen. And she has gotten back to me and lo and behold, she’s a blogger and a crafty girl and an Etsy shop–owner. She also writes a mean intro, so I’m not going to rewrite her and paraphrase her, I’m letting her take it away!

First off, sorry I didn’t respond quicker. Your email was in my spam and I didn’t notice it.

I live in a small city, one small enough that everyone lives in each other’s back pocket. As a transplanted Toronto girl, I still have to get used to that.

I have a blog ( but it’s not very entertaining. The impetus was to have an online journal for far away family and friends to read, so when they email me and ask, “How’s things?” I don’t have to write the same stuff all the time. And I swear in it because I have a potty mouth in real life.

A friend had me set up an Etsy store ( for my purses [editorial note: Jennifer makes bags, wallets and purses from recycled juice boxes, record sleeves, old books—they are amazing, and gift-giving season is right around the corner, so check her site out], if you’re more willing to post something like that.

My bio? Ew. I earn money off the English language and other people’s poor grasp of it. In other words, I write, edit and tutor. I’m a Ryerson Journalism grad, which probably explains everything. I read blogs like yours because great writing begets great writing and it’s nice to know I’m not alone in Momland. I’m kicking my middle age in the teeth by training to be a fitness instructor. I make my kooky bags and accessories out of recycled materials (Jammers, record albums, and books mostly). I’m a married mother of three (a girl, 10, and two boys who are 8 and 5). And I aspire to have the calm, wisdom and grace that my Etsy-building friend possesses.

Keep on keeping on. You do a fantastic job.


So, there you are, the winner. I’m starting another contest Thursday, in my Things I Love Thursday post. The prize is a copy of Desmond Morris’s new book Amazing Baby ($40). Check back and enter!

Meet-a-Blogger Monday

Mom Blogger JacquelynHello! Welcome to Meet-a-Blogger Monday here at Because I Said So! When I tell people that I write a blog, they often counter with “I’ve always wondered what kind of person writes a blog!” I try to keep from answering, “Oh, you know, a socially maladjusted, merlot self-medicating, don’t-need-a-shrink-but- gosh-let-me-type- until-my-fingers-bleed kind of person!” So, think of this as a blog social, each Monday for the next little while, and I’ll hook you up with some neat people. The only real requirement is that she or he be a parent and be familiar with the Because I Said So! mystique.

I’ve been reading We Are THAT Family for month and months, and the writer, Kristen, is a complete howl. She still has her husband, and they go to rodeos, do home improvement projects, her kids communicate on masking tape, the same kids have CSIed the house, she has fun craft ideas, and has no problem laughing at herself. That’s key to me!

I invited Kristen to write a Continue reading

Meet-a-Blogger Monday

Mom Blogger JacquelynHello! I have a new feature for you, invented by me (and probably a hundred or more other bloggers in the blogoshere). When I tell people that I write a blog, the reaction ranges from “really!” to “oh, that must be so cool” to “I’ve always wondered what kind of person writes a blog!” I try to shake off the reply, “Oh, you know, a socially maladjusted, merlot self-medicating, don’t-need-a-shrink-but-gosh-let-me-type- until-my-fingers-bleed kind of person!” So, the idea I had is to introduce you to fellow bloggers who have busy blogs, lives and fun ways of writing about them. Think of this as a blog social, each Monday for the next little while, and I’ll hook you up with some neat people. The only real requirement is that she or he be a parent and be familiar with the Because I Said So! mystique.

No more stalling. Please say hello to Jill, the woman behind The Diaper Diaries, in whose blog carnival I have been participating: Continue reading