The Lowdown on the Slow Down on Lansdowne #TTC

Lansdowne bus

Allow me to complain about something that impacts me directly and not so much the majority of my readership. Public transit, most notably, the Lansdowne bus (RT 47) once it hits Dundas West. In a word – embarrassing.

Oh it is not actually the Toronto Transit Commission’s fault (TTC) that transit on this route has reduced to a crawl most days, but they certainly did not help the fact (will get to that later).
First, the pain in the ass problem my wife and I face daily.

We both work downtown and are on the subway line. It makes it super easy to get to and from work and in an efficient manner. The average trip for me usually takes 25-30 minutes door-to-door. That’s amazing right?
Since we moved to our new house, our boys have moved to Parkdale PS school. Thankfully, there is a bus route right next to it, so whoever drops off or picks up, it’s very convenient. Or so it should be.
The problem is that southbound on Lansdowne once you drop below Dundas West has been under city construction for 5 years. Okay, exaggeration on that. Since the start of the summer. Every time we think it’s over, it’s extended. Right now it has been pushed to the end of October.

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Time, Where Is It Going?

You know in movies when they want to make you feel like time is quickly passing by speeding everything up? Kind of like fast forward on the PVR. That is how life is moving lately.

Nothing makes me feel this way more than watching the boys grow up in every way possible. It’s amazing and sad all at the same time. They will never be the way they were yesterday and that happens every single day.

I really love the ages that we have right now. Harry is almost seven and Charlie is almost four. It seems perfect on so many levels. They are boys. Not toddlers or whatever you want to call a three-year old. They are full on boys that have many moments of love, hate and everything in between.

It’s all going too fast. Summer was a blur. Back to school came out of nowhere it seemed.


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Thank You Howard

harry at howard wall

There are so many variables that go into the makeup of who your kid becomes. As much as you try to control the narrative, manipulate each path taken and add your two cents to each decision, there are aspects you just can’t control.

One such variable that shapes a kid and sets them on a path is where they start school. I am not talking daycare or preschool or babysitting, I am talking full day, school. Where your kid starts going to school can have a huge impact on their love of school, how they learn, how they develop and who they become. It is the starting point for who their friends are, what types of teachers they like/dislike, the start of real stress and worry and really, the start of them becoming an individual person.

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Kumon Made A Difference For Our Son


It’s amazing when you can see a real change in your child. When they conquer something by bursting right through a wall that was frustrating them. That’s what our son Harry has done in the last few months with his reading and writing.

I am also happy to share with you that one of the contributing factors was Harry’s time spent at Kumon, an after school math and reading program. For those following the journey, you know that we were approached by Kumon to try out their service for six months in exchange for an honest review on the blog.

As I mentioned before, it was perfect timing because in October of last year, Harry was struggling and getting more and more frustrated by the day. He was falling behind in class and stressing himself out over it. Young kids should not be stressing about such things.

Before even starting Kumon, we met with Harry’s Grade One teacher and worked out a plan for him to get extra help at school and what we could do at home. TLC for reading and writing was coming from all fronts. That’s why it was perfect that Kumon came calling when it did.

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Weekdays 5pm to 6pm: Just Get There

I work in a pretty typical office environment. People come and go between 8 am and 8 pm depending on what they are up to. But you know how I can pick out the parents with young kids? They all leave in a hurry. The reason, at least for me? I need to get from Point A (work) to Point B (daycare) in an hour or less.

And in Toronto, that is not an easy trick even if it seems close. By car, the trip is under 10 KMs. But if I actually did drive, it would take forever. My mode of transportation is the TTC. Streetcar > Subway > Subway > Streetcar > Walk. On a good day it takes 30 minutes. On a bad day it can take the full hour. It’s stressful. Nobody seems to be going at the same speed as me. It’s frustrating to get stuck behind dude who is walking and watching CSI on his iPad. It’s annoying when the subway get’s backed up and I have to wait multiple trains. It’s really frustrating when you are stuck inside a train and there are service suspensions. It’s not like I can call daycare and let them know. I am underground.

Katie and I have managed to avoid being late to this point which is actually very impressive. So we have not experienced the late fee that is listed in their rules. It’s a few bucks every minute or something.

Then once I actually have the kids in hand, it’s still a 10-15 minute trip home. So all-in-all, I leave work as close to 5 pm as possible and getting home is more like 6:05 pm. Yes, you should feel sorry for me.

So for those who see me grab my stuff and bolt right at 5 pm, it’s not that I can’t wait to get out of work and I am not giving it my all, it’s that I know I need to take the crazy and stressful trip to kid pick up.

What’s your story? How do you get your kids picked up on time?

Here is how I feel most days.

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