As long as I can remember, all I wanted to do was write. My childhood was filled with quiet afternoons writing. I enrolled in every English class I could find, was accepted into journalism school, and was lucky enough to find work once I graduated.
Journalism is an industry I take great pride in being a part of, and I always felt at home in the newsroom. I’ve had coffee with Romeo Dallaire, discussed writing with Naomi Klein. I covered Robert Pickton’s trial. I was a reporter at the 2010 Olympics.
I loved working in Vancouver as a beat reporter and photographer, I loved working in Toronto as a national and international news editor, and I loved being a columnist.
But everything runs its course, and in 2015 – when I was pregnant with my second daughter – I said goodbye to pressing deadlines and long nights, and began a new career as a freelance journalist, and blogger.
I gravitate toward stories that focus on gender and women’s issues, health, social issues and urban living, as well as parenthood and raising daughters. I write for Metro News, the Toronto Star, Today’s Parent magazine, as well as a handful of other print and online publications.
Stick around to check out some of my most recently-published articles, or drop me a line to chat about freelance work at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Thanks for stopping by, and I hope you enjoy what you read.
Most recently published articles
C-Sections Aren’t a Failure, They’re a Success (Yummy Mummy Club)
Even as they were wheeling me into the operating room, I couldn’t believe it was actually happening. The C-section the doula in our prenatal class had warned us about. The C-section she said we wouldn’t need because our bodies know how to give birth. Read story here
Kids Tune In To Adult Body Talk (Toronto Star)
As if getting the kids dressed and out the door weren’t enough of an ordeal, suddenly my 3-year-old flat out refuses to wear anything smaller than a 3T. “Hang on!” she says, raising a hand as I bring an outfit toward her. “Let me see the tag.” She inspects the clothing and furrows her brow. “This says TWO!” The clothing is rejected and a fight ensues. Read story here
This Is What Real Heroism Looks Like (Toronto Star)
A teen and her aunt want cancer patients at Toronto’s Hospital For Sick Children to feel like heroes — so they’re making them capes. Read story here
What you should never say to a C-section mom (Today’s Parent)
I’m not going to name names, but after my first c-section, someone had the gall to inform me I was lucky because I got to forego labour. It wasn’t the first boneheaded comment someone made about my C-sections but it was maybe the most presumptuous. Read story here
If you spent more than a nanosecond online over the weekend, you probably saw the video of a toddler video bombing her dad as he’s giving a Skype interview with the BBC. The first time I watched it, I laughed out loud. And then I cringed, because I’ve been there. Read story here
Valentine’s Day the Family Way (Toronto Star)
Having kids doesn’t mean parents need to give up on Valentine’s Day altogether. It just means we need to tweak how we recognize it, by including the kids and making it a day to celebrate the whole family. Read more
Kids and 911 (Today’s Parent)
The last thing Tracey Smith recalls before blacking out on her bathroom floor is the sound of her three-year-old’s voice. “I can remember my son asking me something, but I didn’t have the ability to respond,” says the Alberta mom. “And then I went out.” Smith often suffers from migraines. Usually they lay her up on the couch. This time was different. Read more
Social media isn’t without its flaws. It can sometimes seem like nothing more than a meeting place for narcissists and trolls. But it can also bring out the best in people, providing them with a platform to campaign for important causes that might otherwise go unnoticed, and giving them an almost limitless audience. Read more
Why 2016 sucked (Metro)
If you feel like 2016 was a bit of a disaster, you’re not alone. From back-to-back celebrity deaths, to a U.S. election that will put Donald Trump in the White House, 2016 blindsided many of us with an endless loop of shocking and crappy news. Grab a box of tissues, and let’s recap the absurd hot mess that was this past year. Read more
White Supremacy in Canada (Metro)
What is the alt-right, and how does it differ from the term white supremacist, skin head and Nazi? Does this movement exist in Canada, and could it gain the kind of momentum we see south of the border? Metro talked with Canadian experts on white supremacy to look at the white power movement in Canada in this eye-opening six-part series.
Why I won’t Xmas shop online (Toronto Star)
I’ve gone retro with my Christmas shopping this year, and I’m not talking about the types of gifts I’ve bought. I mean I shopped in-person, exchanging cash for gifts-in-hand. We stood awestruck in the presence of Santa, and actually had fun. In fact, it was so refreshing to go offline that I think I’ll do it again next year. Read more
9 gift ideas for kids who have everything (Today’s Parent)
Grandma and Grandpa want a list of what your kid wants for the holidays—but the last thing you need is more toys to fill up your already-crammed playroom. Try these ideas instead. Read more
How to survive Vancouver’s annual polar bear swim (Metro Vancouver)
Thousands will welcome the New Year by taking part in the annual plunge into the chilly waters of English Bay. We laid out the do’s and don’ts of this epic Vancouver tradition. Read here
Metro reached out to current and former members of the military to get their take on whether stores should or should not put up holiday decor before Nov. 11. Read more
Wee ones and the web (Toronto Star)
Baby Joey Marie Choi is only halfway through her first year of life, and already she’s an Internet celebrity with a tickle trunk that would make most cosplayers jealous. She’s been dressed as singers Sia, Beyoncé, Game of Thrones hero Jon Snow and even Eleven from Stranger Things — all while blissfully asleep. The photos are so excruciatingly adorable, they’ve been shared all over the web. Read more
Social media and competitive parenting (Toronto Star)
It happens almost daily: I log in to Facebook. I scroll through my feed. And I’m bombarded with photographs of babies from my mom group eating solids or sitting unassisted. Then I look at my own 6-month-old daughter lying like a blob and I feel a twang of panic. Shouldn’t she be reaching for toys and popping teeth, too? What’s wrong with her? Read more
Media and mental illness (Metro)
There are several terrible truths surrounding the stabbings of two teenage girls in an Abbotsford high school. The first and most tragic being that a young girl is dead and another injured. The second being that the young man allegedly responsible appears to have had no motive. Whether mental illness played a factor is still unclear, but that hasn’t stopped many people from jumping to that conclusion. Read more
Don’t call me “mommy”(Toronto Star)
Recently, I overhead a conversation between friends in which one told the other that I have a “mommy blog.” It’s a term I’m familiar with, but had never considered it might apply to me, and I found myself offended without really understanding why. “I don’t only write about motherhood,” I thought to myself. “And even if I did, why does my blog need to be qualified?” Read more
Metro News ran six stories about miscarriage ahead of Pregnancy and Infant Loss Remembrance Day, which aims to destigmatize miscarriage. These are the stories.
When innocent comments sexualize kids (Toronto Star)
I’ll admit to having done something super cliché when I found out one of my best friends was expecting a boy after my daughter was born: I started planning our kids’ wedding. At their first play date — and let me emphasize that they were just little blobs lying on a play mat — I may have referred to him as Isla’s “little boyfriend.” Read more
Two parents weigh in on controversial topics in this Toronto Star series: Yay or Nay to Elf on a Shelf; Forcing kids to share; Swearing in front of our kids; Paying for chores; and Enrolling kids in violent sports.
I have this secret stash of selfies on my laptop that I wish I could post online except they show too much nipple. Or more nipple than I’m used to showing off to Facebook friends. They’re pics I’ve taken of me breastfeeding, snapped in secret because I wanted to capture the moment for posterity, even though I figured it was maybe a weirdo thing to do… Read more
Too old to breastfeed? (Metro)
There’s a large faction of people out there who are pretty grossed out by the idea of breastfeeding toddlers and preschoolers. Opinions range from: “It’s weird and makes me uncomfortable” to “it’s tantamount to pedophilia.” The latter opinion veers well into the realm of crazy. The former, well, I used to see the point there. I now know better… Read more
Why we gave up being landlords to be Airbnb hosts instead (Toronto Star)
They leave us Israeli dates, Dutch cheese graters, homemade Brazilian treats and toys for our kids. Little thank-yous for hosting them in our home, even though it’s not really our home, but an apartment we built in our basement and converted into an Airbnb suite. To say we didn’t get that treatment when we were landlords is an understatement… Read more
Babylicious welcomes tykes into T.O. eateries (Toronto Star)
Tabülé on Queen St. E. is packed with media moms and their babies. We’re sitting at tables chatting while the kids, strapped into high chairs, suck back food pouches. All the kids, that is, except my 3-year-old. She’s squeezed the contents of her pouch onto a plate and is licking it like a child raised by wolves. She’s eaten almost nothing, and has declared herself “full” and “done.” … Read more
Our prime minister did something really cool this week, and I’m not talking about shirtless photobombs. He tweeted a beautiful pic of his wife nursing their son, Hadrien. The caption read, “Let’s support mothers who breastfeed anytime, anywhere.” He was throwing his support behind World Breastfeeding Week… Read more
A gift guide for new mothers and moms-to-be. Hint: they really just want to hear “thank you”, and to get a nice long break. Read more
Kids and food allergies (Toronto Star)
Any new parent will likely agree to at least these two universal truths: you want to do what’s best for your kid, and what’s best is often subjective. Most people will tell you just to go with your gut, but what happens when your gut is the problem? This is the conundrum for any parent who has a food allergy or intolerance. They’ll tell you that feeding their own kids can feel like playing Russian roulette… Read more
They hem our pants, scrub our stovetops, walk our dogs and yell, I mean encourage, us to do that one last horrible sit up. They are the people who help run our lives, and most of us would be lost without them. Because they work so hard, and because the point of the holidays is to bring happiness to others, they certainly should be on our Christmas shopping lists… Read more
Want to rent on Toronto Islands? Get ready to schmooze (Toronto Star)
Ever have a fantasy about ditching your city life and setting up shop in one of the cosy cottages on the Toronto Islands? It’s quiet, you can watch the sun set from the beach, and you’re only a 15-minute ferry ride from downtown. Best of all, there’s no traffic. Paradise, right? But with fewer than 300 homes on the Island, stock is limited. And unless you know someone who knows someone whose brother’s cousin is an Islander and can vouch for you, homeowners may not be willing to hand over their keys… Read more
Men who take their wives’ last names (Toronto Star)
When Trevor Morrison took the unconventional step of taking his wife’s last name, he also broke the news to everyone in an unconventional way: by letting his wedding officiant introduce the newlyweds as “Mr. and Mrs. Morrison.” Trevor, 28, a student at London’s Western University, admits with a laugh that it was a huge shock to his unsuspecting parents… Read more
I can’t believe I’m actually writing this column because this has been said so many times. But, given the recent breastfeeding-shaming incidents at a Winnipeg mall and on a United Airlines flight, I guess it needs to be said again: Breastfeeding is not gross. It’s natural, it’s important and it’s really difficult. So it’s shocking to me that mothers are being shamed for doing it in public — and by other women. I nursed my daughter for 12 months. Sometimes I covered up, sometimes I didn’t, but I was always modest – as our most nursing mothers… Read more
Something pretty amazing in the world of social outreach happened in Toronto last week, and it’s caught the attention of homeless advocates across the country. A 106-bed shelter for women and children was slated to close at the end of March, but a developer stepped in and offered space in a boutique condo in a trendy neighbourhood. The news was celebrated around the city, especially in the community of Leslieville, where 50,000 people signed a petition demanding the shelter stay open… Read more
It’s Pink Shirt Day in Canada — a national day to raise awareness about bullying — so let’s talk. Bullying education has come a long way since I was a kid. Students today learn that bullying takes many forms, from the physical to emotional, and they’re taught to recognize and address these various forms of abuse. It’s a conversation we need to keep having, as it’s easy for children — and adults — to ignore the types of bullying that don’t leave bruises… Read more
I’m your average Canadian — polite, apologetic and law-abiding. I like that rules are in place to maintain order and fairness. But there’s something wrong with a legal system that punishes Good Samaritans — and by extension the people they are trying to help… Read more
The new (baby)face of feminism (Metro)
There’s a new face to feminism these days. It’s a youthful face, made up of girls fighting for women’s rights before they’ve become women themselves. Consider Malala Yousafzai, who has just become the youngest person to receive the Nobel Peace Prize. She was only 11 years old when she became a vocal activist for the universal right to education. Her rallying cry for children’s and girls’ equality is aimed at policy-makers. But, by virtue of her age, she’s inspiring fellow children… Read more
Let me inundate you with even more Jian Ghomeshi analysis, because I think it’s important. In fact, I think it’s a matter of life and death. So before we turn the page, hear me out. Jian Ghomeshi has been charged and the case is in the courts, but this isn’t the time to turn our backs on the story. If we do so, it will end an important dialogue about sexual violence, and that puts women in danger… Read more