Funny Mummy: March 2012: Snips & Snails? Or Sugar and Spice?

Two brothers

By: Kathy Buckworth

Snips & Snails? Or Sugar & Spice?

Snips and Snails and Puppy Dog Tails. That’s what Little Boys are made of. What sick freak thought that up? And really? Little Girls are made up of Sugar and Spice and EVERYTHING nice? Really? As a mother of both boys and girls, my personal experience tells me that it’s not always true – at least when it comes to how they interact with Mommy.

Most girls have their Spice to Sugar ratio wildly out of whack when they hit the tween and teen years. And it’s the Little Boys who know how to turn the sugar on. My nine year old son Nicholas is the master of diplomacy when it comes to my age, my weight, and even my jokes. Oh, I know he’s just kissing up, but I don’t really care. When I compare him to my 13 year old daughter Bridget who has a knack for, well, being a girl and telling it like it is, I especially like a little pandering. While this honesty will serve her well when she has to deal with a boyfriend herself, frankly I could live without some of her input.

Some of it is definitely NOT NICE.

Bridget: Mom! Aren’t you breaking your diet?
Nicholas: Oh come on Bridget! Mom’s so skinny! She is!
Bridget: Not if she keeps eating McChickens for lunch.

Or this:

Bridget: You don’t have wrinkles everywhere Mom.
(Short pause while I silently ponder “who asked?”, and brace myself for the other shoe.)
Bridget: Just on your face.
And there it is. To the rescue?
Nicholas: But she still looks younger than Dad, right Mom?

The fact that I’m a year older than him makes that remark particularly sweet. The only way it could have been better is if Dad could have been standing right there to hear it. I’ll just publish it here instead.

Sadly, all Little Boys get bigger, and my eighteen year old son conveniently demonstrates that it’s the pre-teen behaviour you should be cherishing. When these lovely little fellows dive into the hormonal teenage abyss they decide overnight that they certainly do not want to marry you like they did when they were five, and that you are also quite possibly the most annoying and clued-out person on the entire planet.

How do I know this? As anexperienced parent, I draw on my keen observational powers. I’ve witnessed the eye rolling, the palpable condescension, and the subtle avoidance techniques he deploys when I enter a room he happens to be in (leaping over couches, darting around corners, cowering behind kitchen counters). All of this is still pretty calm compared to my oldest daughter, who, upon seeing me put on make-up before we leave the house can be heard muttering “It’s not like anyone is going to look at you anyway, Mom.”.

It’s then that I know the nursery rhyme definitely lists the ingredients of Sugar and Spice in the wrong order.Perhaps I’m being too literal. Besides, what is a Snip anyway? And why are poor innocent Snails given such a bad rap? I quite like them myself. Had some in garlic butter last night as a matter of fact. And yes, that was breaking my dietTOO, Bridget.

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Kathy BuckworthKathy Buckworth Award winning author, I Am So The Boss Of You, Shut Up & Eat, The BlackBerryDiaries Feature writer, (Travel, Parenting, Auto) Columnist for ParentsCanada, Dabble, GoodLife, DisneyJunior Blogger for Huffington Post Canada, Funny Mummy Syndicated Column CTV NewsChannel, CityLine and follow Kathy on twitter@KathyBuckworth

Written By

Kathy Buckworth is an award winning writer, public speaker, and television personality. She is the author of six books, including “I Am So The Boss of You: An 8 Step Guide to Giving Your Family The Business” (Random House). Warner Brothers Television has purchased the rights for this book. Her books have been translated into Chinese, Indonesian and other languages, and are available on and wherever books are sold. She is a columnist with Post City Magazines and contributes to the Metro News,, the Huffington Post, Zoomer Magazine, ParentsCanada, Canadian Living, the Travel Channel and GoodLife. She is the writer and host of the FamilyFocus series, and was a regular guest expert on CBC’s Steven and Chris, a regular contributor to the CTV Canada AM Parenting Panel, as well as appearing regularly on Breakfast Television, CanadaAM and CBC radio. She also delivers a bi-monthly travel segment (How She Travels) on Sirius/XM Canada Talks highly rated “What She Said” show. Kathy is a two time winner of the Professional Writers Association of Canada Award for Excellence in Humour, and is the recipient of the Mississauga Arts Award for Established Literary Arts. She was recently announced as one of Canada’s Favourite Moms by Canadian Living Magazine, and recognized by the Huffington Post as a top parenting Tweeter to follow. She has over 18 years of corporate marketing experience, with CIBC, Royal Bank, Telus and Coca Cola Foods. She is the Chief Family Advisor for Presidents Choice Financial and PCPlus, and has also acted as corporate/media spokesperson/social media consultant for many other companies such as Procter & Gamble, Maple Leaf Foods, Research In Motion, Pfizer and LeapFrog Toys. Kathy serves on the board of the Toronto Symphony Volunteer Committee, as their public relations advisor. She lives with her material (four kids) and husband (more material) in the Toronto area. She is a member of the Professional Writers Association of Canada, the Writers Union of Canada, the American Society of Journalists and Authors, and the Travel Media Association of Canada.