Panel of older moms discuss their experiences on national television show

Canada AM Panel

Between The New Family, Toronto Life and Canada AM, there’s been a lot of discussion in my world about being an “older mom.”

The reality is, however, that becoming a parent later in life is an increasingly more common occurrence. As women struggle with financial responsibilities, career goals and the inherent challenges of biology and fertility that age brings, the definition of “older mom” will continue to shift. While my personal situation is atypical (having raised a child to adulthood and also raising young children), my experience in being an older mom to elementary-aged children is not.

As a result of the Toronto Life and The New Family articles and podcast, the conversation on this topic continued on Canada AM (You can read the full Toronto Life article here:The Mid-Life Moms Club).

The segment made me reflect upon some of the both positive and negative aspects of parenting at an advanced age. Here’s some of the pros and cons of having children when you’re over 40 (or in your late 30’s).


  • I’m more calm and confident in my abilities
  • I’m more self-assured and less anxious
  • More financially stable/more money available
  • I’ve had the experience of already raising a child so know what to expect and am able to provide advice to first-time parents who are uncertain
  • Life experience has made me wiser and I don’t feel like I have something to prove
  • Career is more established when you’re older with kids
  • People judge me and think I’m crazy
  • Less energy than I had when parenting at a younger age – I get tired more easily
  • Going through menopause and middle-age while dealing with young kids or teen angst can be challenging
  • Generally speaking, older parents will have less time to spend with your kids and may not be able to be an actively-engaged grandparent due to age-related illness
  • Kids may not get to know their grandparents (my younger kids never met their paternal grandparents)

Did I miss any? :)

Watch the full segment here and let me know your thoughts:

Canada AM: Becoming a Mom at 40+

What are your thoughts about becoming a mom later in life? Has this been your experience or do you know someone who has taken this untraditional route? Tell me all about it in the comments section below.


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Family Money: Compare and Save in 3 Easy Steps

by Samantha on October 31, 2015 does the financial leg work so you don't have to

*Sponsored post*

For most busy parents, time is money. We all know that there’s a shortage of free time when you’re trying to navigate the basics of life: working, taking care of kids, shopping and driving children to various lessons via mom’s chauffeur service.

The concept of actually sitting down and planning – whether it’s for the future, for the present or for everything in-between is daunting, to say the least. The big decisions – such as deciding where to invest, how to get the best rate of return on your savings account and figuring out which credit card gives the best perks, rewards or rates – seems too time-consuming to investigate. After all: who has time for spreadsheet comparisons when someone’s having a meltdown in the corner while their sibling is making a huge fuss about the fact that you gave them broccoli with their dinner?

We all know that Professor Google is a great resource when we do finally take the time to try to find out information but, that too can be daunting. Remember what they said about “too much of a good thing?” Therein lies the problem.

Where does a frazzled mom or dad start when they want to get the goods – really get the goods (perhaps at a discount) – and fast?

Furthermore, how does a frazzled parent get dollars to doughnuts comparisons of said products in time to pick up the kids from soccer practice?

Life is expensive, free time is short an nerves are shot. For these reasons alone, parents are stressed.

Stressed that they’re not making the right financial choices for their present and future family lives (think budgeting for tonight’s dinner and planning for next year’s vacation).

Stressed that they’re not getting the best deals, rewards and loyalty points that will make tonight’s dinner and next year’s family vacation palatable – both literally and figuratively.

Stressed that they’ve not save up enough for their kids future education, their own personal retirement or the unexpected financial crises that seem to affect all of us at least once in our lives.

I recently became aware of a website that does just this – it takes the legwork out of the important financial comparisons that frugal families need to do, and does so easily and quickly as well. is a one-stop shop and comparative website for all things money-related, including credit cards (including reward cards and details), banking products, mortgages, insurance (including Life, Travel an Automobile), and more. Think of it as a “virtual financial assistant” who is part bookkeeper, part savvy shopper and a quick an effective study on the best ways to get the most bang for your family buck.

The site is great, as it’s independent – that is – it’s not affiliated with any particular bank, financial institution or lender, so the information provided is completely objective. Free to use, consumers can easily log on and get the most relevant and up-to-date information on the latest personal finance offers, guides, tips and advice that is best suite to the consumer’s particular needs. There is also a vast resource of informative and easy-to-digest and plain-language articles on a variety of related financial topics – a great help for those of us who don’t really like reading the usual dry, boring financial fare found so often online. is simple to use and one of the great things about it is that it continually updates the best rates and offers available in the market so that you don’t have to. That’s right – simply make a few clicks to customize what you’re looking for and the site will return the answers to you in the time it takes you to click a mouse (or touchpad). The site even has mortgage calculators, savings calculators (find out how much you’ll be able to set away for the family by simply plugging in a dollar amount and timeframe) and a single location to compare auto/travel/home/life insurance rates. No more trying to figure it out by hitting numerous sites and opening multiple tabs.

Simply select the financial product that you’d like to compare, refine your search, click “compare” and watch the results table load, showing you a comprehensive comparison of the best rates, perks and offers available. If any or all of the information revealed piques your interest, no worries – you can find out even more information by easily completing a call-back request from the specific company that you’re interested in learning about.

It couldn’t be simpler.

If you’re busy, tired, hesitant or just plain put off by the prospect of having to spend many hours of groundwork gathering information to make the best money-related decisions for your family, check out this site and spend your time – and money – wisely.


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PODCAST: Parenting in Four Decades!

by Samantha on October 29, 2015

What's it like to raise kids in very different times? Listen to The New Family podcast and find out


What’s it like to parent kids in four decades?

Sounds like a strange question, but it’s one that I can answer.

You see, I’ve done it – and continue to do it with my four children, who range in age from adulthood to elementary school age.

Confused? Surprised? Intrigued?

Read The New Family article where I provide details and listen to The New Family Podcast where I’m interviewed on the topic by The New Family website founder, Brandie Weikle.

the new family

On the podcast, I had a great discussion with Brandie, who provided me with the opportunity to discuss a variety of topics related to my unique parenting journey. Some items that we spoke about include:

  • Parenting in the digital age – how technology has change how we parent in today’s world
  • Becoming a mom in your 40’s – and society’s acceptance or lack of acceptance for this choice
  • Inappropriate and rude comments related to being pregnant at an older age, including discussions on body image and questions regarding fertility and IVF
To download and listen to the episode in iTunes, click here:
To download and listen to the episode via Stitcher radio, click here:
It’s definitely a unique story and has certainly been a trip! Lots of ups an downs and many learnings along the way.

If you haven’t already, please subscribe to this great podcast series on iTunes and give it a rating, if you’re so inclined.

Can’t wait to hear what you think of the episode! Leave me your thoughts in the comments section below.


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Can you be shamed for being sweaty? Apparently so, according to some

sweating woman

We’ve heard of “body-shaming,” “slut-shaming,” “fat-shaming.”

Now there’s apparently a new type of humiliation that’s making the rounds, likely at a Starbucks near you.

“Sweat-shaming,” as it’s called, is the experience of being shamed for being, well, sweaty, because we all know that that’s a bad thing.

And because this blog is all about kids and parenting, let me tie this in within a familial context:

Do we now have to worry about not only our dear children being bullied at school for a number of reasons, but be aware that they may be “sweat-shamed” as well? More importantly, are we going to let our kids grow up to be adults who jump on the latest bandwagon in order to capitalize on trends, to the detriment of those who have actually experienced real shaming? In my humble opinion, “fat-shaming,” “slut-shaming” and “body-shaming” are real things; “sweat-shaming is not.”

It all started with this article:

“Sweat-Shaming” – A Woman’s Workout Humiliation

According to this piece in the Washington Post, this woman ventured into a coffee shop while sweating profusely, after finishing a gruelling workout. She was called out (apparently) about her dripping-with-sweat presence in line by a not-so-nice woman in line behind her. This hurt her feelings. Accordingly, she conveyed her pain in an article for the Washington Post.

“Her intentions were to disapprove how I looked. This was sweat shaming.” -Amy Roe, whose profuse sweating was commented on by a fellow Starbucks customer

Following her admission of the humiliation and shame that she felt, there were a number of other, similar incidents that came to light, with more people admitting to being the victims of “sweat-shaming.” I listened to this podcast, from Canada’s public broadcaster, CBC, that interviewed  yet another woman who too, had been “sweat-shamed.” You can listen to the full interview here:

CBC The Current – Sweat-Shaming Episode

While the unsolicited comment from the person in line at Starbucks represented bad form, equating it with behaviour that is very real and very damaging is, in itself, damaging. People who have been the brunt of being teased and shamed for not falling into the prescribed boxes are facing very real battles, daily. To add “sweat-shaming” as a struggle that is on par with being shamed for not having the perceived “right” body type, or being judged for behaviour of a sexual nature detracts from the awareness that needs to occur for these real shaming incidents to stop.

Anyway, if it’s not already clear, I don’t think that “sweat-shaming” is a thing. Not now, not ever.

Listen to my discussion with the fabulous women on Broadscast about this topic, here, and let me know what you think of this trend:

Broadscast – Sweat-Shaming and Other Things

And if you’re not already a subscriber to this great radio program, subscribe now!



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How to have fun and stay active with the kids in spite of your exhaustion

Active Kids

Whew! Just looking at this picture tires me out! How about you?

If you’re like me – or so many other parents out there – the ability to keep up with your kids is a challenge to say the least!

With the trend towards parenting by the over-35 crowd, it’s no wonder that there’s a collective feeling of exhaustion that exists amongst those parents who just want to put their feet up and chill in front of the TV. The stress ratchets up a notch or two when your child insists on a physically-challenging activity that may not only tire you, but injure you as well.

Thankfully, there are options for those who, for whatever reasons, be it age, physical limitations or otherwise, are not able to literally keep up with their kids. Read on for simple solutions that won’t put a damper on the fun.

 Five Tips For Tired or Older Parents

1) Set your own goals – You’re NOT 25 and nor should you behave like you are, or expect to keep up with those 10 or more years younger than you. Yes – the young, energetic moms and dads may be able to physically race after their kids but you, dear parent, are likely more financially stable, more patient and less worried about the minutia of day-to-day life. For these reasons alone, march to the beat of your own drum and leave the (literal) running around to those who have the energy to do so.

“March to the beat of your own drum and leave the (literal) running around to those who have the energy to do so”

2) Get in shape, within reason – Physical fitness has been proven to provide the stamina and energy required for running after active kids. Do something that is healthy but not stressful on your body. Keeping tip number one in mind, set your own goals and make plans to be healthy within the range of your own abilities (not anyone else’s). Consider yoga, walking or low-impact cardio activities that will get your blood pumping without causing any physical pain or damage.

3)Think “quality” not “quantity.” – So, you’re not up for another three hours of touch football following your two-hour hike through the local trail? No worries – it’s not about how much you do with your child, but rather how memorable and fun each activity you do with them becomes. In other words, it’s perfectly fine to hike with your child for half-an hour as opposed to two hours. Similarly, play that game of touch football but end it before you start feeling those physical strains, aches and pains.

4) Encourage non-physical activities – Fun and games doesn’t always have to include running, jumping, climbing or dancing. Make some new memories with your kids that don’t include a physical element. Do what you did when you were a kid: play board games, cards, go for walks or lie down outside and gaze at the stars on a clear night.

5) Meditate and be thankful – You’re in a place where so many would like to be – you’re “mom” or “dad” to a child/children and there’s nothing more amazing than that. It’s all about quality, not quantity. Use mindfulness to help you both appreciate  the positive things in your life (like family) as well as to calm your mind when the stress of parenting gets to be a challenge on various occasions.

And yes – I am both an older and a tired parent. Read all about it here:

What Makes a Family?

What do you do to keep up with your kids? Tell me about it in the comments section below.


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IN THE NEWS: Smartphones in the Classroom: Yes or No?

September 2, 2015

As kids return to school, educators and parents are split on the use of popular technology tools in class As the kids return to school, the topic of technology use in the classroom is one that will once again be discussed amongst parents and educators alike. In a time where kids of all ages carry […]

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ROUNDUP: Top Back-to-School Tips For Parents

August 31, 2015

A selection of the best strategies for anxious parents about how to manage back-to-school season Anxious about your child’s return to school? You’re not alone. This time of the year, parents everywhere are stressed! Is it any wonder? There are so many things to consider: What new clothes does my child need? What about shoes? […]

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IN THE NEWS: Picky Eater? Don’t Sweat It!

August 28, 2015

Follow these simple tips when packing your child’s lunchbox School lunches can be a headache for parents who have the good fortune [*sarcasm*] of having a picky eater on their hands. Worrying about whether your child has eaten during school hours, or envisioning them hungry and miserable is the fear of many parents. As we […]

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What Makes a Family?

August 26, 2015

The “1,000 Family Project” sheds light on the changing face of the modern family What makes a family? What does the concept of “family” mean in today’s world? Once upon a time, the the only societally-accepted norm for the family structure consisted of a mother, a father a few kids and a white picket fence. […]

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IN THE NEWS: Your Baby Monitor Can Be Hacked

August 1, 2015

Who’s listening to your baby? Parents urged to take precautions with monitor technology   Who’s listening to your baby? Are you safe? Is your baby safe? The intersection of technology and parenting continues to expand as we increasingly rely on digital tools to make our roles as parents easier. We use tech more than ever to […]

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