It’s Not All Mary Poppins

Tea and Pee and ME, first!

1021836___caffeine__I am at that “certain age”, and by and large I think I look pretty fine for all my years. The wrinkles I genuinely don’t mind — evidences of a life well lived — the gray hair I cover, and the various bodily creaks and groans I get seen to by my RMT daughter. (Hee!! Well worth paying her train fare to visit.)

However, the weight? The thickening of the body? That I don’t like so well, and the weight, she does creep on if you don’t pay attention. So I do the obvious — avoid the junk and put a little activity into every day. (Sadly, chasing toddlers doesn’t seem to be sufficient all by itself. I can’t think for the life of me why not. Booo.)

I also have a weight-maintenance strategy (shared, as I happens by Mir): “tea as food substitute.”

When I get that sudden “MUST EAT” urge, I indulge in a little self-talk: “You’re not hungry, you’re bored. Have some TEA!”

So I do. Cup after cup of the stuff. The first one or two in the morning are black and caffeinated, the rest are herbal. Mint, rooibos, raspberry, spice… So much choice — even though they all taste the same: water. Beautifully scented water, but water. I don’t care. What I’m after is HOT and calorie-free.

(I’m drinking even more this week, seeking some form of heat. Minus 28C with a windchill of -39C (-18F and -38F). Even inside, I need two layers and a sweater. Boooo.)

But for every action, there is an equal and opposite reaction. With all that input, there has to be an output. And so there is. Lots and lots. Copious. Many trips up the 15 stairs. Many, many trips. 15 steps up, 15 steps down. (Which is another way in which lots of tea contributes to weight maintenance. And — I live in hope — semi-decent thighs??)

Problem is, I live in a home knee-deep in toddlers, many of whom are toilet trained. Toilet trained, thus also going up those 15 steps to the bathroom.

Going up them slowly. Sooooo slowly. One-step, one-step, sometimes stopping to check out a piece of lint or take a wee breather or simply stare blankly into space. I could harry them up the stairs, “Hurry UP! I have to pee, too!”

But that takes time, time I may or may not have, so I prefer just to pound on by them. Leap like an aging gazelle over their trundling bodies, whip into the bathroom, claim that premium space with my butt. “Ha! I got here first!” By the time they’re finished all that lint-picking and space-gazing, I’ll probably be done, anyway, and if I’m not?

There are two potties in this house, and one toilet. Let them figure it out…


January 16, 2009 - Posted by | health and safety, Mid-Century Modern Moms, potty tales, power struggle | , , , , ,


  1. Haha! Way to go! (hee, hee… “go”, get it? Groan…)

    As soon as I started reading this, I had to go put on the tea kettle…

    Oh, me too!:-)

    Comment by rosie_kate | January 16, 2009 | Reply

  2. I am pregnant and recently found out that tea and coffee, even if decaf, are a diaretic. So, just by drinking it, it’ll make you have to go! By drinking volumes of it, I’m sure it triples the outcome! So, for me, prego, I need to drink 60 oz of water and try not to drink tea and coffee (which I also use to keep warm!). Instead I’ve been drinking (calorie laden) hot chocolate to keep warm. Even more calories because when drinking hot chocolate…it must have a good size blob of Fluff on top!

    Decaf coffee and black tea are diuretics. I don’t think mint, spice, or fruit teas are. Now you’ve got me curious, I’ll be looking into it! I don’t like hot chocolate — too sweet!

    Comment by Patti | January 16, 2009 | Reply

  3. I’ll sometimes just heat up a mug of water even if I’m not thirsty- just to hold it in the cold! Lots of herbal tea choices here too- and not diuretics.

    “Most herbal teas are not diuretics, i.e. they will not affect the body differently than a cup of hot water.”

    Well, there you go! There’s a certain justice in that, since most of them taste like hot water, too… Thank you!

    Comment by Jill in Atlanta | January 16, 2009 | Reply

  4. Good to know about the herbal teas…I just haven’t found one I like yet. Too fruity.

    Heehee. You like sweet, I like salt: it’s the differences that make the world an interesting place! There are lots of non-fruit herbal teas, though: peppermint, chamomile (which I’m allergic to), anise, dill, fennel, thyme, verbena… if it has leaves, seeds, or roots, you can make a tea from it! I’m partial to one called Bengal Spice, which is made from cinnamon, cardamom, ginger and vanilla. It has a lovely aroma, and really warms you going down.

    Comment by Patti | January 16, 2009 | Reply

  5. I don’t like the fruity herbal teas, but I love mint tea, which is another kind of herb. Also ginger tea, and sometimes Tension Tamer, which is a blend that includes peppermint, cinnamon, ginger, AND chamomile. I also recommend a variety we discovered in France – Tilleul, which is tea made from flowers or leaves of the linden tree. Nice.

    Oh, and flowers! I said ‘leaves, seeds, or roots’ to Patti, above, but forgot flowers. You know, I don’t think I even know what a linden tree looks like. I’ll have to check it out. Can you get Tilleul here?

    I couldn’t drink the Tension Tamer, though, because of the chamomile. In fact, I don’t know whether I’m allergic to it any more, since it’s been years since I tried. However, the last time I did, I had no sooner swallowed the first mouthful than I immediately — within seconds — hurled mightily. Somehow, I haven’t wanted to try chamomile again… Good thing there are so many other lovely herbal teas to try!

    Comment by lynn | January 16, 2009 | Reply

  6. If you go to and go to the day care pages and do a search for “policy statements” you can read how the state of NY wants providers to handle their own bathroom needs. I just love that they decided this required a written policy. On the other hand, the regs are sort of anal so I guess it all makes sense.

    They certainly are anal — all 156 pages of them. Phew. Most of them are dealing with very common-sense things (so much so it seems sad that you even need to say it, but I know, these things do need to be spelled out for some people). But common-sense enough that anyone with a little… well, common sense… wouldn’t have too much difficulty adhering to them. There are a few things that strike me as silly — does a parent have their child visible to them at every second during the day, including naps? But mostly, it’s just sensible (if nit-picky) stuff.

    Comment by jwg | January 16, 2009 | Reply

  7. Now I need tea. Sigh. Oh well, I’m on a new health kick (life change, hopefully) due to the recent health scares, and I think herbal tea will fit right in.

    And there are SO MANY lovely herbals! We have a “Tea Store” right here in town that is such fun to browse. (And they sell online, oh you in the frigid north!) Anything you could possibly want, they’ve made a tea of it. Good luck with the life changes. Just about anything is do-able, one small step at a time!

    Comment by Tammy | January 17, 2009 | Reply

  8. I cant believe how cold it is for you, if it drops to 5 below here, everything stops and panic ensues!

    I’m not a tea drinker amd must confess an addiction to pepsi max, bad for me, my teeth and a bad example to the children but I love its cool sweetness!

    Pepsi, huh? Haven’t touched the stuff since I was, oh, 26 or so — but I always did prefer it to Coke. (Now I don’t like either. Bet you’ll never guess why… too sweet!)

    Five below is mild. MILD. At five below, people are wearing sweaters and jean jackets, maybe a down-filled vest. (Which to us is outerwear. Waistcoat? Would you call it a down-filled waistcoat?) Five below is spring.

    But our temperatures are probably mild to Tammy up there, who lives a few hundred kilometres north of me. And certainly our winters are significantly shorter, for all the whining I do about how long it is!

    Comment by jenny | January 17, 2009 | Reply

  9. peppermint tea, i’m pretty sure, is a laxative. i love tazo tea–zen, and winterberry are my current favorites!

    Tazo is sold by Starbucks, isn’t it? I pretty much loathe Starbucks: their coffees are too bitter, and their blender drinks are too sweet, so, when I’m stuck at a Starbucks, I usually go for a tea. I’ll have to try those two, next time I find myself there.

    Comment by Dana | January 17, 2009 | Reply

  10. Thanks for the great post! I am drinking green tea as it relaxes me and I know that anti-oxidants will be flushed away from my body. It can help lose weight and boost your metabolism. Hmm.. I never tried rooibos, must have it I guess.. 😉

    Comment by Garden Hose Bib | January 19, 2009 | Reply

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