a peek inside the fishbowl

Posts Tagged ‘teens

Speaking of gifts… did your parents send you care packages while you were away at college or university? In my post about life with one less kid around the house I mentioned that I have found a tiny bit solace in sending care packages to the eldest while she’s away at university. I thought it might […]

31 Oct, 2017

Living with one less

Posted by: andrea tomkins In: parenting

As you may know, our eldest daughter is in her first year of university. (You can read about that right here. Grab a tissue.) Our youngest is still at home. She jokes that she doesn’t have anyone to roll her eyes at when we are Being Total Parents, but I have a sneaking suspicion this […]

“When you eat an orange, eat an orange.” I don’t know who originally said this. Some sources attribute it to an unnamed Zen master, others, to Vietnamese Buddhist monk and religious leader, Thich Nhat Hanh. Regardless who said it, this philosophy is one I try to live by and instill in our kids. It reminds […]

06 Mar, 2017

A new chapter unfolds

Posted by: andrea tomkins In: Misc. life|parenting

As I mentioned in this recent post, our firstborn is off to school in the fall, which will leave us minus one child here at home during the school year. If you follow me on Instagram you probably saw some photos from the different universities we visited awhile back: I can hardly believe it. Sigh. […]

22 Dec, 2015

Last minute gift ideas for tweens and teens

Posted by: andrea tomkins In: Oh! Things!

A Fishbowl reader was looking for last-minute gift ideas for tweens and teens this week. I pointed her to this past post, but I wanted to add a few of my personal faves here too: Texting gloves so they can text without their fingers freezing (Here’s a pair from MEC.) Blanket scarves – apparently it’s cool to bundle […]


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  • andrea tomkins: It was gorgeous and we had amazing weather. It went by too quickly... as it always does. :)
  • Peter G.: You know you are in a good place when even the dog is smiling. Looks like it was a lovely and likely deserved getaway.
  • Nora B.: So nice to see photos of J&D's beautiful cottage. A wonderful place to get away for a little while from our crazy world!
  • Luis: Never buy a Maytag appliance I have had mine for two years now and the washer and dry suck. Washer leaves soap on clothing and dry doesn’t dry.
  • a peek inside the fishbowl » Blog Archive Wedding anniversaries and pandemics - a peek inside the fishbowl: […] This is what we did for our anniversary last year, by the […]
  • andrea tomkins: Thank you Sally! It was so peaceful... very restorative. I look forward to our camping trips every year!

The Obligatory Blurb

My name is Andrea and I live in the Westboro area of Ottawa with my husband Mark and our dog Piper who is kind of a big deal on Instagram. We also have two human daughters: Emma (20) and Sarah (18). During the day I work as a writer at The Royal Ottawa Mental Health Centre. I am a longtime Ottawa blogger and I've occupied this little corner of the WWW since 1999. The Fishbowl is my whiteboard, water cooler, and journal, all rolled into one. I'm passionate about healthy living, arts and culture, family travel, great gear, good food, and sharing the best of Ottawa for families. I also love vegetables, photography, gadgets, and great design.

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