ACW Episode 304 – Keeping the beat


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Not long after I got back from taking care of my parents last winter, this happened. Princess was having trouble sleeping, and she was worried about her heart stopping. She said she felt really anxious and kept getting a tightness in her chest, and said she could feel her heart skip a beat every now and then. We had it looked into. She’s fine. The anxiety is most likely a result of teen hormones flooding her system. The tightness is due to the anxiety, and the occasional skipped beat looks to be a premature ventricular contraction, which is perfectly normal. Still, it was a couple months before Princess’ anxiety subsided, and while she was anxious, so was I.

To paraphrase Elizabeth Stone, having a child is like watching your heart walk around outside your chest. And that’s just as amazing to see as it is terrifying.

ACW Episode 303 – Finally!


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Finally, I am back to work. At least I hope so. My schedule keeps going crazy, and I have not been the best about sitting down to work on the webcomic. I am trying to get back to regular updates. I’m even looking at posting things other than just the webcomic! But we’ve had a LOT going on, and so I am struggling right now to get back in the saddle again.

This week’s episode happened a couple months ago, not long after I got back from taking care of my parents after my dad’s heart attack. For whatever reason, Princess suddenly needed me to be “Mommy” again, and I was more than happy to oblige. But Princess is now an inch taller than I am, and I really, REALLY, shouldn’t be trying to pick her up. My back, like the rest of me, is forty-eight years old.

I already have the next episode pencilled, so here’s hoping I get to work on inking it tomorrow! You may see some style changes in how I draw the webcomic. I got a new Surface and I’ve been uploading and updating all my software on it. I haven’t managed to migrate all my original brushes and preferences from the old Surface yet, but I decided I needed to get back to posting rather than worry about little things like that. Plus, I kind of want to experiment with the look of the webcomic, see if I find a new way to handle inking and pencilling and such.

Anyhoo, that’s all for today! Enjoy!

ACW Episode 299 – The Apples and the Tree

Cynical Woman webcomic!

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Sooooooooo… I’m a little behind schedule.

My apologies for the delay in getting this episode posted to the web. The first month of the school year has been hectic to say the least. So far, we’ve had 6 weeks of cross country practice, two 5K races, an all-day service project at a local convent (yes, I spent a day at a convent; the sisters were very nice), a Girl Scout recruitment meeting, a Girl Scout troop meeting, and Girl Scout service unit meeting, two sick kids, one sick mom, and one Hubster out of town on a business trip. Plus the usual homework, housework, and other daily chores.

Did I mention I crocheted seven Pokemon this month for my Girl Scout troop to hunt for in my yard?

So, we’ve been busy. I am trying to get back to a schedule where I work for at least an hour every day on the webcomic, but it’s a bit tough to do during cross country season. Practice is four days a week, for two and a half hours, after school. That doesn’t leave us much time in the evenings to get stuff done. And with the start of the school year, my mornings are taken up with Girl Scout work (which has to be done) and exercise (which desperately needs to be done). If I’m lucky, I find a bit of time to wash and fold the laundry and clean the dishes.

And I tell you all of this as a way of explaining that yes, I am going through a sort of mid-life crisis in real life right now. Well, I wouldn’t really call it a crisis. But I have been looking back a lot to the days when I was younger and my time was my own to do with as I pleased. And yes, it’s still my time to do with as I please, but how I choose to spend it now is vastly different from how I used to spend it. I no longer spend my time on me. I spend it on my kids, on my friends, on volunteer work. And I don’t think that’s a bad choice. Just a very, very busy one.

Anyway, enough chit-chat. I’m posting this now and getting back to work on the next episode. Hopefully episode 300 will be up within a week! If not, you know what’s going on. Life, that’s what’s going on 🙂

Episode 283 – Parents, don’t let your babies grow up to be assholes


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This actually happened, although the backpack in question belonged to another young lady, not Princess. Regardless of who’s bag it was, I still get pissed off when I think about it. I expect a certain level of civilized behavior from kids, and the older they get, the more I expect. So when I see a kid acting like a huge jerk, I do not shrink from calling them on it. And when a parent lets me know they tolerate that kind of behavior, I don’t hesitate to call them out either.

Honestly, the first job of a parent is to keep their kids safe and healthy. The second job, though, is to civilize those little savages. And to be honest, I think the civilization process is a huge part of the keeping safe process. Because I am not joking – one of these days I will kill one of these kids.

ACW Episode 269 – Sleeping Beauty


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Kids are so much fun to draw comics about. And so easy. They offer so many real-life instances for inspiration.

Princess does not wake up easy. Even as a toddler, she would sleep hard for hours at nap time (ah, those were the days) and then wake up all bleary-eyed and groggy. Not much has changed now that she’s a pre-teen.

When I started work on this cartoon, it immediately reminded me of some of my favorite “Bloom County” comic strips. Nobody draws groggy, sleep-deprived people like Berke Breathed does. I even pulled out some of my “Bloom County” books for inspiration and spent all day reading comics. That was not a waste of time at all. Nope, no-siree-Bob.

ACW Episode 255 – Mo’ Money!


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The conversations I had with Pixie this past weekend regarding chores were not nearly this pleasant. I swear, that kid has mastered the stink-eye. Of course, it has no effect whatsoever on her terrible, horrible, EVIL mother.

To quote Bill Cosby, “I brought you into this world, kid…”

Letters from YO MAMA – Calling home sick

Dear Small Child,

This is YO MAMA speaking. I love you very much. But you stayed home sick from school EVERY DAY last week. Your father tried to take you back to school on Friday, when we knew you felt fine, but you cried and moaned so much he had to bring you back home. To me. And every day that you were home, YO MAMA (that's me) could not go ANYWHERE. Not to the gym, not to the grocery store, not to the craft store to buy yarn, not even outside to go for a walk. As a result, YO MAMA is now STIR CRAZY. Totally, and completely STIR CRAZY.

This weekend, you ran around the yard, played, went to karate class, had fun at a 5-hour long Girl Scout meeting, and did all sorts of cool things. And you never once cried about how sick you felt. So today, when you got up, your father and YO MAMA told you, “YOU ARE READY TO GO BACK TO SCHOOL!” And naturally, you started crying again.

But your father took you to school anyway. And you've been there a grand total of 90 minutes. And you've already been to the nurse's office, and the nurse has already called YO MAMA to let me know that you are crying about an upset tummy.


You are at school today, and you are going to stay there. And you are going back to school tomorrow. Because YO MAMA is so worn out and so stir-crazy from being stuck at home taking care of you all last week that there is NO WAY IN HELL she is going to pick you up from school and bring you home. Instead, YO MAMA is going to stay right here, on the couch, watching bad horror movies on TV while she sips coffee and draws webcomics.


I love you. Have a wonderful day at school.



ACW Episode 247 – Swim test, anyone?


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File this one under the category of “things that really happened.” The lifeguard at our pool is the son of our next door neighbor. I’ve known him since he was about 6 years old. Now he’s in college and taller than I am.

Of course, Princess (who is only 11) is going to be taller than he is very soon.