Thursday, December 27, 2007

Belated Merry Christmas

Well. Merry Christmas!!! So sorry I am late on the well wishes. I really had no Internet signal while I was gone. We were borrowing (at least we tried to) the neighbor's while we were at my Mom's but it was really patchy and I couldn't get on to check my mail or blog. I thought of you all and hope you had an amazing time with your families and friends.
I will be posting tons of pictures of our holidays and visiting all of you as quickly as I can, but we have 2 boys in hockey tournaments and 2 more Christmas dinner and gift exchanges this week. As well as my Monkey's fourth birthday on New Year's Eve.
Oh and I will have to show you all what I got for Christmas! So flippin' excited about it!

Saturday, December 22, 2007

The drive...

This started out as a post from my mobile, but now I am piggybacking a wireless signal. (shhh!!)

Yesterday afternoon:
We are on the highway to my Mom's for the holidays. We are singing fun Christmas songs and enjoying our family time. the kids are being amazingly well behaved with a minimum of potty breaks! woohoo! We have been driving for 4 hours and figured My Girly would really need a diaper change. She was dry! Daddy has her in the bathroom right now,yippee!
Oh! They are back, she did it! She pee peed on the potty! We just sang the song and I am all teary now!
Well she hasn't gone potty again in the last 24 hours, but no biggie, she will eventually:)
The kids were amazingly well behaved in the car, the trip went very smoothly I was just in awe of my terrific kids. We spent at least an hour singing Christmas songs together. My kids are scary good at the 12 days of Christmas. We are so glad to have arrived here and to be spending time with my family. Love them so much.
Hope all of your preparations are going well ant that you have an awesome Christmas.
Here are our traditional car photos.
Grumpy sleepy Girly























Juju
Monkey drawing Mommy on the window.
My boys amusing themselves. Look at all the stuff back there! We had a full roof rack too!
Mom and Dad rocking out during our sing-a-long


PHOTO REMOVED

Thursday, December 20, 2007

He's a mean one, Mr Grinch Mighty

For the last couple of years I have really wanted to get a new, fake, Christmas tree. One of the one's with the lights already attached. I have looked at them with covetous stares for a long time. Last year we went to the store and checked out a bunch and I chose the one I really liked. None in stock. They sent us to another of their outlets where they had a few of my gorgeous, full, white lighted trees. So we went. And we decided it was too expensive and left without it. We drove to Ikea and got 2 real trees, which were lovely and fun.
This year, my husband decided that we can't get a real tree because we are going away til after Christmas and it would dry out while we were gone. So we go back on a tree hunt. I find the tree I want and love and again they have none in stock. But, they have some in another store not that far away. But the tree is 300 dollars! And my dh keeps waffling and whining and complaining about the money. He is getting super grumpy! And we still have no tree.
Finally last night I told him that I guessed we could get a little 4 footer for the years that we are away at my Mom's and they we could get real trees when we are home for Christmas. So he grudgingly agreed to drive me to the store to 'look' again. He was not in a very Christmassy mood. Christmas often makes him a bit ornery:)
So we are driving along and Mr. Mighty says to me, "Maybe the trees will be cheaper on Boxing day and we can set one up when we get home."
Trying to contain my rage at this, I turn to him and say, "Well, I am sure that you couldn't be any cheaper on Boxing Day. grrrr"
Then we both laughed, me grudgingly, him out loud guffawing, and the tension was broken.
When we got to the tree section, the trees were on sale! I got to buy the tree I really wanted! And my dh was happy as a clam the rest of the night to have gotten a deal. He was humming flippin' Christmas carols in the store! The grinch's heart grew t'ree sizes that day, all for the love of a sale.
Love ya honey!

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Hockey game

Last night my husband took my eldest boy and his best friend to the NHL game. This was the Boy's birthday 'party'. Because he is now 13 we let him choose between having a few friends for a party or going to a sporting event or concert with a friend. He chose Hockey!
His friend brought a gift wrapped in the Blue and Copper, an Oiler's t-shirt and cap and they spent the evening eating junk and screaming for their hometown heroes.
Here are the boys after J gave his gift to The Boy, check out his new duds!
My 3 men off to the game in their jerseys.
SORRY, PHOTOS REMOVED

The Oilers lost in the shootout (very unusual for them!)and our boys were a bit disappointed. My son told his Dad that in every professional sporting event that he has attended, his team has lost. But in every one that our 10 year old has attended, his team has won. My eldest felt like a jinx. My dh gently explained to the Boy that he really has no impact on the results of the game. At all. :)
I am off to shop, but I will be back later to visit all of you. :)





Watching the game with rapt attention.

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Winter Wonder

Thank you to all of you who sent get well wishes to our little girly. She is still pretty sick and at times miserable, but thankfully we didn't have to take her in to the hospital. The croup part seems to have passed now. And although I hate seeing my kids sick, I definitely don't mind the extra cuddles. Thankfully the rest of us have stayed healthy.
edited to add: Check out my homeschool blog for more photos of Christmas fun and hopefully a Christmas tradition in the making.
We have spent the last couple days getting ready to leave to go to my Mom's for Christmas. Mainly that has meant wrapping presents, cleaning and decluttering the house, and fitting in as many of our Christmas traditions that we have to do here at home. Two nights ago we bundled up all the kids, got some hot chocolate and went to the Festival of Lights down in the Park. Every year a number of organizations set up gorgeous light displays in the park and at night you can drive through the magical, Christmassy land, immersed in the glittering displays. The Festival of Lights raises money for the Hot Lunch program in schools and collects food for the Food Bank. This year was the most fun we have had there, because of our little one's enthusiastic reactions! All of the kids favourite set-up is one of the simplest. A squirrel running through the forest. They have a series of about 20 squirrels in sequential poses so that as each one lights up, it looks like he is darting through trees and over picnic benches. No matter what other amazing sights the children see, the squirrels always get the best reaction!
Here is a terrible photo I tried to take from the car.
Last night we bundled up again and headed to Candy Cane Lane. This is a street in the west end where all the houses decorate for Christmas, it is like the Griswold's gone wild! Some of the houses have beautiful painted displays as well as lights. I think my favourite is one with an Arctic scene complete with Northern lights, polar bears, seals, and inexplicably, penguins. We were going to walk the street and fully take in the displays, but it was quite late and we had 2 grumpy toddlers so we decided to drive. (Therefore I have no photos) Everyone brings donations to the food bank and you can take a horse drawn carriage on some nights. The kids begged to do that, but there were no horses last night.
About halfway through there was a house with an elaborate snowman display, the man who lives there even did up his front room and had that lit up for people to look at. He is an artist and was selling a calendar of snowmen illustrations to raise money for a cause he supports. At the very end of the street is one of my favourite houses. From the time Dh and I were dating they would decorate every inch of their home inside and out. Displays in every window, millions of lights. Last year the house was dark. Dh and I were so sad and wondered what had happened to the people who lived there. I am assuming they sold because the house was dark again this year. :(
On the way home, dh decided to stop at this house we always drive by that really is the Griswold's on steroids. You can not imagine how many lights this home has. It glows like a Christmas beacon to all who pass by. This year the Canadian Diabetes Association had a table set up outside. I guess the woman who lived there and had decorated for the neighbourhood all these years, passed away in September due to complications of her diabetes. Her son bought the house and put up all her decorations again this year, as a tribute to his mother who so loved them. He gave the CDA permission to come and raise funds and collect used clothing at the house and they give out literature with Maizie's story so we can all remember her. Pretty wonderful story. I took a few terrible photos, but you really have to visit it to appreciate it. She has displays in each of the windows, all different scenes, even the basement windows. She has a reindeer corral in the corner of the lot, tons of life size Santas caroling away, an angel looking over all who pass. I had always kind of laughed at the gaudiness as we had drove by, but being there and experiencing the full effect of the intricacies left me in awe and not a little dazzled with the wonder of the holiday.
I would love to hear about some of your favourite Christmas traditions!

Saturday, December 15, 2007

Lazy, Dazy Saturday

My baby girl is sick this morning. She woke up barking and wheezing and whimpering. Now for her, more than anything, the whimpering is a huge neon sign that she is sick. She is a one tough cookie. When she falls down, she usually just gets back up and looks a bit stunned for a moment before she continues playing. She can have tonsillitis, and I would never know until I look in her mouth while brushing her teeth. She is not the whining or complaining type of girl. She is very good natured, she even smiles and laughs while beating up her big brother (who is barely bigger than her and very mild-mannered).
So this morning she has been whimpering and crying and having a hard time catching her breath. Her resp. rate was very high and I could see the in-drawing at the base of her throat. Croup hits the Mighty house once again. Ugh. Poor thing. So mommy spent the morning cuddling and consoling and bathing and exposing those vocal cords to cold air. Right now, she seems to be feeling a bit better, she was dancing with R. to High School Musical! Still wheezing and coughing, but smiling and singing and dancing. She is tough.
I can foresee a trip to emerg. in my near future, usually when the kids have croup they do better in the daytime. I don't think the very dry air in the house, car and stores yesterday was very helpful, I have a pot of water on the stove today trying to raise the humidity level in the home.
Aww, she is trying to laugh at daddy and she has a wheezy, barky laugh. wah.
I am hoping that the cold, hockey arena air will help her this afternoon, because, of course that is where we are heading right away.
Woah! Huge news! R is cleaning his room! He is actually cleaning it, I wonder if that has anything to do with Daddy standing in his doorway holding a huge garbage bag. Hey! I didn't know he had carpet in his room! Strange. Go R!
We are spending a lazy Saturday morning at home, something we never do, ever! For once we only have one ice time, and it was NOT at 6:30 am! I am so enjoying being cuddled up with my babies, crocheting the Christmas stockings I have been working on for 3 years. Seriously. I only pull them out in the middle of December and work on them and I have yet to finish my baby girly's, or Kalila's or the one for a friend that I promised to do 3 YEARS ago! I got the body of A's put together last year, but I am still working on the applique of Santa that goes on the front. I have about 4 or 6 rows left of Santa's beard. I am determined to have it all finished by Christmas eve this year. So I guess I won't be doing too much scrapbooking this week:( I prefer the scrapbooking.

Ha HA! I just looked up to see the kids dancing. My Juju is doing the Cosby! I don't think he has ever seen The Cosby Show, but he is so doing the Bill Cosby Dance, Cute!
My boys found some old Christmas crackers this morning and one of them placed a crown upon my head. I had totally forgotten about it til My eldest just came in my room, got down on one knee, bowed and said, "All Hail Mommy, Queen of the Computer." Hmm, maybe I should spend less time in front of this thing. Maybe I should be Queen of the kitchen. Or Queen of the Laundry, or Queen of the Playground. I am sure the rest of my family would prefer any of those things.
I guess I will go for now, and maybe join in the dancing and throw some dinner in the slow cooker. Have a wonderful weekend, I know I am.

Friday, December 14, 2007

Christmas shopping

Well, we spent the day Christmas shopping, last night too. Now we have spent our wad and we are all done!!! I am so excited, this will be the first year that we don't do any shopping on Christmas Eve! Costco is usually so quiet Christmas Eve that we don't mind, but it does make that day a bit hectic.
My husband spent way too much money on me and I know what I am getting. I love it, but I agonize over the money he spent. I am agonizing over the money I spent! I am not a spender, well I can be, but I am a racked with guilt spender. Oh well, Christmas only comes once a year and this is really only the second or third time in 14 years that we have actually done this. Some people go overboard year after year. And our kid's gifts are quite reasonable, so I am glad of that.
It is quite fun to be able to go out and get something for someone that you know they will love. Often, gift buying can be quite painful for me, because I always feel like I can't pick something that will make the other person happy. I feel like I will buy or make something that I think is wonderful and the giftee will be disappointed and therefore be disappointed in me. It is totally dumb, I know, but it has always been a part of my perfectionist personality. For some reason I don't feel that this year. I feel like I put my heart into the purchases I made and the gifts I made and that it will all be fine. The people I am giving to, love me. I love them. And really that is all that matters. Isn't it?

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Ahh...

Well, I didn't get out on my own yesterday, but I had a lovely morning where my dh took care of breakfast and diapers and child-minding and I stayed in my room and scrapbooked! And then we went out together for the afternoon and did some shopping. It was so nice to just be with my husband, walk hand in hand and just talk.
At dinner time we took the kids to a neighbourhood restaurant that we had never visited before and had some pizza. It was a terrific place with very friendly people and the pizza was just like homemade. Yummy! The restaurant was in the same complex as taekwondo, so dh walked them to the dojang and we finished our dinner.
After supper I bought the kids all new jammies and they looked so sweet and cozy last night as they tried them on that I had to take a picture. ( I do have two other kids, but they are much harder to catch with the camera!) Frame by Vera Lim
I feel about 100% more relaxed today than I have in weeks, almost asleep relaxed... barely coherent... :)
Today we have our homeschooler Christmas get-together and the kids are having a crazy gift exchange so we need to make a trip to the dollar store this morning. I was also supposed to bake. I haven't. I will be making a trip to the grocery store for party treats I guess. Oh and I need to pick up a hostess gift. Ugh. I wish I was a bit more organized, oh well. I can barely work up the energy to get stressed. Too relaxed...
I will have to blog later when I have something more to say. Have a wonderful day!
Oh! Wait! I have to show you what I was working on yesterday! I am making a storybook on Heritage Makers with our software that is free for everyone to use as well as the awesome Scrapgirls digital scrapbooking elements that come with our Premier Membership. Check out what I made in one morning. I am so impressed with how easy everything is to use. I especially love how the scrapbook elements are organized, I just type in a search word and all the elements that match come right up! So quick! Oh, sorry about the red borders, those are just there to show me what part will not print. I can't wait to get a few hours to finish this album, especially to make my own custom covers. How cool is that?
edit: not sure what happened with my preview of the 'At the lake layout, the journaling seems to have moved to a weird place, it is supposed to be beside the large photo on the back ground paper. oops!

Monday, December 10, 2007

May pages and Make-up

So today as I was making these..... (click image for credits)
A. was doing this....
Doesn't she look lovely with her make-up on? That girl loves mascara! I guess I should maybe pay better attention to her. Ack! She gets into everything. I had to throw her in the bath to wash off all the stinky perfume she found as well as all the makeup.
I had a pretty blah day I have to say. Dh came home for the night last night, but we didn't get to be in the same place at the same time because our eldest had a hockey game til 11pm! They won! This morning dh left for work again at 4:30 am. I didn't know when he would be coming home to stay, and my kids were more whiny today than yesterday before they saw him. blech.
But today he called and said he is done his job, he was too tired to come home tonight, but he will be here tomorrow! Yay! I get my dh back! My kids get their daddy back! Tomorrow I am sleeping in, then I am getting up, doing makeup, getting dressed up and heading out of the house without my kids. I have no idea what I shall do, but I will not be at home with my kids. I so need a little mommy time-out! I love my life and spending time with my kids, but everyone deserves a day off once in a while:)
I told my dh that I would be home.... sometime.

Sunday, December 09, 2007

Snow play

The weather finally warmed up a bit today, it was only about -5 C, so I bundled up the kids and sent them out to play. I came out with my camera and took a few photos, since I have been neglectful in that area lately. I think I have been secretly waiting for my new camera and shunning my old one!
R, my ten year old is out with his uncle today. Uncle Ryan picked R up for hockey and they have spent the whole afternoon together, walking the dogs, going for lunch. I am sure R feels pretty special, it is not often any of them get to spend the day with their Uncle, and he is a pretty awesome guy. Uncle Ryan and Auntie Chantelle don't have any kids, but they have two terrific dogs, so all my kids think that their house is the best to visit. They get to share the spotlight with their two favourite furries, Mommy is too mean to get a dog at our house.
I threw together this layout this afternoon using a template freebie from Amy's Blog, click on image for credits. I think I might stick this one in my Heritage Makers storybook I am making to chronicle 2007 . See this post for April and October.
I had to share this photo of A. This is what she looks like when she starts to talk, I don't know if it comes across to you as well as it does to me. But she does this thing where she tilts her head and closes her eyes for a second as she starts to talk to you as if she can barely stand to spend the few moments to speak with such peasants as you. It always starts with a big sigh and then she slowly and deliberately tells you what she has to say, just in case you are too dumb to understand. It makes me laugh every time. Thankfully it makes everyone laugh!
(frame by Two Sister's Designs @ scrapartist.com)
Have a wonderful Sunday.

Saturday, December 08, 2007

Heavy Heart

I sit to write this morning with a very heavy heart. My heart is filled with sadness for many who are suffering with grief or illness as we head into this holiday season.
I found out yesterday that my cousin's son and daughter in law buried their baby yesterday. I don't know many details, but their baby, Grace was stillborn at close to full term. Of course my heart is broken for them and for C., my friend at My Resurfacing that I have spoken of before, who's due date is approaching, who's baby Callum was born still at 34 weeks. Through her I have found so many other women who are suffering similar losses and every time I read one of their stories, my heart is ripped open a little wider. I pray for peace and hope for these families. The hope and assurance that I will one day hold my baby in heaven is truly what got me through the darkest moments of grief.
Some of my blogging friends are worried about loved ones who are suffering with cancer, my heart goes out to you. (My heart is aching for you Badness) This horrid disease affects every family it seems, I have lost some very close relatives to it and to diabetes, and my mil is a breast cancer survivor. I pray for strength and healing for your relatives and strength and peace for you my friends, as well as lots of time with your loved ones.
One of my close girlfriend's husband lost his Grandfather this week to cancer, her boys played with mine as their parents went to the hospital. Last night she was sharing with me how God was merciful to Grandma in allowing the Grandfather to go through the very last stage of death quickly and relatively peacefully. My friend is a nurse and she was telling me that sometimes the last gaspings of death can be quite prolonged and noisy and can be disturbing to the family. As Grandfather went into this part, my girlfriend said that Grandma seemed disturbed by it so she prayed it would pass quickly and my friend was thankful for God's mercy in this area.
It seems like every day I am confronted with the stories of strangers in tragedies and my heart is repeatedly broken as I think of the grieving families left behind. There was a woman and her four children from Prince George, all killed when their vehicle hit a semi. My heart goes out to her family and to the driver of the truck who also must be grieving. It seems so senseless and awful, I just pray that God will comfort the family and friends, offer them some hope in this hopeless time.
My mom's friend suffered a tragedy in his life last month. His wife's son has been very troubled and was at the end of his rope. He went out in his car and was involved in an accident where he and the other driver were both killed. The other driver was his mother. So this poor man lost his wife and stepson in one horrific accident. All I could think was, "Why God?" Then I reminded myself that there is no why that I need to know. We have choices we make and sometimes the consequences are horrific. I am so sorry for these losses. God, please offer comfort to this man and his family, some easing of their suffering, some hope of a better future. I guess God has answered this in a way for him as he has been spending time with his new baby Granddaughter this week.
I do not tell you about all these people who are suffering with grief to depress you. But I have been reminded over and over again to look beyond my snug little life to those who are in need around me. It is easy for me to be caught up in the joy of the season and forget the great pain of those I come in contact with. It is easy for me to get caught up in what I perceive as my own 'suffering' as I go through my day to day life, complaining of little annoyances, being irritated with my children (who are my greatest joy and blessings) or circumstances.
I don't want to forget to savour each moment with my family and friends. Life can be so fleeting. Children grow quickly. Tragedies take place in the blink of an eye. Healthy children and parents are blessings to be thankful for.
And, as a woman who believes in the power of prayer, who believes in a loving God who has all of us in his hands, it is my duty and privilege to spend time on my knees for those who are suffering and in need. Don't let me forget all those who are mourning and those who are ill, I am thankful that God is reminding me of those who need His love and making my heart soft to their stories. To be very honest, it had been a long time since I actually spent time in prayer for people outside my immediate circle. I often thought about it, but didn't actually get around to it, so caught up in my own life and selfish needs and desires. I am truly thankful that God is opening my heart to those around me again, my achy heart a constant reminder of the pain other's carry.
I used to be very sensitive to others in that way, very empathetic. But years of struggling with postpartum depression and leading a self-centered, selfish life had deadened me a bit to the emotions of others. I think I prefer being this way. I cry a lot more tears, but they feel so cleansing and real.
I feel like I am doing a real hack job on this post, I really felt like sharing what was on my heart, but it is not coming out right.
Please hug your family and tell them you love them. Remember how fleeting these moments are, the good and the bad. Please give a hug or say a prayer for someone who is suffering or in need, I know you already do:)

Friday, December 07, 2007

'Pots that isn't chicken AND Storybooking!

"Mommy, I have 'pots. My 'pots isn't chicken."
My 2 year old girly has spots. Spots that look suspiciously like chicken pox. The chicken pox that I fought a huge internal battle with myself over whether or not I should immunize against. Especially because it meant giving her 7 shots at one time. I told the nurse to go for it, she had her 7 shots. Her DTaP-IPV was behind because I could never get into the health clinic and she was past due for MMR and varicella (plus whatever else they do now, I think HIB, HP, pneumonicoccal and meningicoccal? ) so they wanted to do them all at once. It was totally against my better judgement but I let them do it.
So my girly is one of the few (I think 20%) that gets the varicella vaccine and still gets chicken pox. I hope hers is a mild case like the health nurse said it should be. And I hope my Monkey boy doesn't get it as well. Ugh.

(warning, shameless self-promotion to follow)
Scrapbooking samples
In other news, wonderful, incredible, amazing news I have a new Mom based business that I want to share with you all. Heritage Makers! It is a memory booking/storybooking/scrapbooking site where I can help you put your family photos and memories into beautiful, custom made, hard cover books to preserve them for a lifetime. I can set each of you up with a free account to try it out if you like. I am so very excited about the whole thing as I have been scrapbooking for a while and have really wanted to put my layouts into gorgeous hard bound books, especially for gift giving.
The best part is that you don't have to know anything about scrapbooking to make the most stunning memory books. All you have to do is upload your photos and pick a design and throw your photos into it.
If you do scrapbook already, or you want to try your hand at it, you can upload your own, finished layouts. Or, even better, you can use our software, right on the site as well as our thousands of digital scrapbook products made by Scrapgirls, to make your own custom layouts! You can also upload your own digital scrapbook products to use.
It is free to have your own account and to use the terrific software on the site! If you want to have a project printed, I can help you pick a package that best suits your needs and gives you extra value. We don't just have storybooks, check out our cards, posters, and family fold-outs as well.
So whether you are a complete beginner or a seasoned digital scrapbooker you can make wonderful storybooks to immortalize your family's memories and enjoy over and over again. Please come and check out my site and contact me so that I can set you up with a free account and tell you about all our special offers. I signed up when I realized that for the price of printing all my layouts out at Costco and buying a $10 album I could instead have my own hardbound storybook, including custom designed covers!
And Heritage Makers is one of Oprah's favourite things. Look for us in an upcoming O list in Oprah's amazing magazine.
Yippee! Can you tell I am excited about this! Every member of my family is getting a Storybook for Christmas! I gotta go get busy:)
For your free account email me at mightymorphinmama (at) gmail (dot) com or click contact me on my site.

Heritage Makers Yearbook

Here are a couple layouts that I will be putting in my yearbooks that I am having made for gifts with my Heritage Makers site. Click on image for credits.












Thursday, December 06, 2007

Retro Dinner

I found this recipe while blog hopping today on Katie's Blog. I thought that my children just might eat it so I made it for dinner tonight. Yum!

Taco Soup
1 lb ground beef
(I think diced onion with the beef would be nice too, but I had none)
1 pkg or 1/4 cup taco seasoning (I used a couple tbsp of Epicure taco seasoning)
48 oz tomato juice (I used V8, cuz that is what I had)
12-14 oz can of kernel corn (I used mixed veggies, again what I had)
16-20 oz can kidney beans, rinsed (I used black beans)

Brown beef and add taco seasoning. Throw in the tomato juice, corn and beans. Bring to a simmer. Serve over crushed corn chips (I used tortilla chips and served on the side for my picky kids) and garnish, as desired, with cheddar cheese and sour cream.
This received rave reviews from the harshest food critics ever, my kids! Thanks for sharing Katie.

Triumph of the Bad News Bears

Last night was a pretty exciting one in our eldest son's hockey season. His team, affectionately know as the 'Bad News Bears' finally won their first game of he season! They started the year with a bunch of small 13 year old boys, most of whom knew very little about hockey. Some could barely skate. They were losing games 13 - 1. Over the last 3 or 4 games they have really been pulling it together and on the weekend they only lost 6 - 5, my son scoring his first goal of the season! Last night they won in a deciding victory, 10 - 4! I think the parents were just as excited as the kids, what an awesome esteem boost. Now they know they can win, I think that is pretty important. They went through a time where they honestly believed that there was no way they could win a game.
Now they know better, and they played like a team. They passed, they spoke to one another on the ice, they made amazing plays. It was very exciting to watch!
My dh is supposed to come home tonight. I so need him to come home tonight. I am losing my mind. I feel like I am unable to deal with the children very effectively anymore. I am losing my temper much more quickly that I would like. The kids are whiny and disobedient. I feel like whining myself. Dh has been working out of town for more than a month and it looks like he is not going to come home tonight. They want him to stay til the job is finished on the fifteenth. When I heard that my heart sank. I felt like I would not be able to cope, especially through another busy weekend of hockey.
But, my God is good. His strength is all I need, and He will help me even for something so little as a busy weekend on my own. And He is so good to have given this work for my husband now. It was a very lucrative contract for my dh and it being extended these few days means that I get my dh home for the Christmas season! He won't need to work til the new year, and I am trusting that God will provide abundant work for his company in January.
So I can deal with another few days on my own. I will try very hard to not make my dh feel bad for being away and to have a thankful heart. I am going to try to knock some things off of my to-do list and prepare for Christmas, so that I can enjoy my time with my dh and our family to the fullest.
Oh! If you pray, please say a little one for my 10 year old. He has croup, quite badly :( Even though it is the middle of the day, his breathing is quite laboured. He always amazes me when he is sick. He rarely complains and he seems to have a sunnier demeanor than usual. When he was small he would get terrible ear infections, but we would never know until he got an eye infection. I am sure God let him get an eye infection every time so that we would treat his bursting ear drums and what must have been significant pain. Not a whimper, no tugging on the ear, nothing to alert us that his ear was so infected that the ear drum was usually moments from bursting when we arrived at the doctor for conjunctivitis. Anyway, he is a bit whimpery today, so we know he is pretty sick. I pray he is better soon and that it ends with him.

Update: well I failed miserably on the not whining to my dh about him staying at work. He called and told me that the woman he is working for came up to him and said that all the other contractors wanted to go home and would he please stay on to help finish the job. When he started to tell me that he said that he would stay there to help them out, I said, "I.. uh.. just.. no.. ugh... argh... why... AAHH!" and I hung up the phone. Then when he called back I was just too mad to listen, so I yelled that at him and hung up again. Now I feel bad. I could not even explain that I felt so awful that he didn't just say that he wanted to go home too. That I wanted him to be my hero instead of a hero to his client. I get all the practical reasons for him to stay. I do, I get that he is making contacts for future business to come his way, I get that he is making money so we can get ahead, I get that if he does this then he gets to spend a few weeks at home at Christmas. But I just want him here. I want him to choose me. I know that he really is choosing me for the long term by doing this, but at that moment I felt otherwise. Anyways, I am just a big whiner who misses her husband. Wah! He said he would come home to sleep tonight though, so I feel better about that. I guess I should get my housework done then:)

Wednesday, December 05, 2007

(almost) Wordless Wednesday

My favourite part of cold winter evenings, snuggling babies in cozy jammies!

frame by Two Sisters Designs @ scrapartist dot com

Tuesday, December 04, 2007

Does this make me Crah-zay?!

Wow, I am just wrung out. I have nothing to say at all. I had so hoped that when the craziness of November was over, my inspiration would come back. So far? Nothing. Oh well.
It was an insane weekend, we had 8 iceslots in 4 days, 4 cabin fever crazy kids, 3 sets of out-of-town guests, 2 snowstorms, 1 class of 4 year olds to teach Sunday School, and I am still minus one husband.
I got a phone call at 11pm on Friday night from a pay phone. Normally I would not have even answered, but I did. Now this was the end of Nanowrimo month and for the previous week I had not done a stitch of housework because I was crazy busy writing. My house looked like bombs had gone off in it. Actually it looks like that again today.
Anyway, 11pm, Friday night, phone call. It is my mom's boyfriend, he and his cousin are in town for the night to see the hockey game and they can't get a hotel room. Can they come and stay with me? Seriously? I was in shock but managed to stutter sh-sh-sh-sure. Instantly a plan of attack for the mountains of housework that needs to be done in the next 20 minutes comes to mind. I got my 13 year old out of his bed (he had only been in there a few minutes...) and made him take all the clean laundry out of the family room and into my room. (yes, after those hours I had spent folding the week before I had a new mountain to deal with.) I sprayed the bathroom with cleaner. I quickly picked up the main floor and tidied the kitchen. I vacuumed all the floors, mopped the kitchen . Put sheets in the wash and made up the bed. I was still on my hands and knees scrubbing the bathroom when the doorbell rang and the guys were at the door with pizza. At 1 am!
I was really surprised that he had called me, because he has only stayed here a couple times even with my mom here. We are just kind of learning how to be around each other. But it was fine and his cousin from NB was a super nice guy, so it was great to meet him as well.
Saturday morning I had to be out of the house by 8:15 with all the kids to take B. to hockey practice and a team parent meeting. We get there and just like on Tuesday, the times were mixed up and there was no practice. argh! I had left my house guests with a pot of fresh coffee and instructions to the toaster so I could get the boy to hockey. I won't be winning any hostess awards! So we had the hockey meeting anyway and that was fine. I took the kids back home and the boys changed from hockey gear into taekwondo gear and I wrestled the little ones back in their snow gear and into the van. I yelled at the ungrateful little wretches who are my oldest boys because we were running late. I had asked them a half an hour early to get ready to go so that we could leave on time to get there. They argued with me that it was not time yet!?! And then they ignored me for their computers while I kept yelling for them to get ready and help the little ones to get their boots and such on. By the time I got two little ones buckled in I was almost in tears and angry that the big boys did not seem to appreciate the effort it takes to get them to all their activities and how hard it is on their younger sibs sometimes.
So we get to the dojang and there is no Taekwondo. argh.
Back home to eat lunch and then do it all over again for hockey two more times.
Sunday morning comes and we are at it again. Hockey practice that the boy needs to be at for 8:30, I had to get the other 3 and myself ready for church first and then drop him off before we headed to church to teach Sunday School. Another terrific family dropped the boy off at church after practice, so that was awesome. After church we had a couple hours off before hockey started again.
My poor little monkey boy, he so hates going out. He is a real homebody and he craves schedule. All the running around really gets to him and when I say it is time to get ready he starts to fight and whine and cry and throws himself limp on the ground. Have you ever tried to fight a limp preschooler into outdoor gear and then into his carseat as he fights like a tiger? Not so fun. On numerous occasions I have had to wrap his coat around him and carry him in my arms into the van and fight him into the buckles. I feel terrible for him but he does need to cooperate sometimes and there are some things that we have to do. Needless to say, it is exhausting for both him and I. ugh.
Sunday night my Dad arrived for his regular visit on his way to work at Diavik. It is always wonderful to see him and it was so nice that he was able to stay with the little ones while I took the boy to his 9:30pm ice times.
Yesterday it snowed all day and it was really going last night. The roads were in awful shape and by the time I got the boy to his hockey practice last night I was almost in tears. This is my first winter driving and although I am doing quite well, it can be a bit scary at times.
Well right after that my cell phone rings. Unknown number. I usually don't answer those, but I did. It is my Mom! She is calling from Calgary where she has been trying to get a flight home. She will arrive in the city at 1am and is wondering if I can come and pick her up at the airport because she can't get all the way home tonight. The airport is almost an hour away from my house, on the highway and it is blizzarding. I did something I don't ever remember doing. I said no to my mom. I was totally afraid to head out in that at 1 in the morning, I was actually afraid of driving back home from the arena. I had planned on taking my dad to the airport in the morning as well, but now I thought I couldn't do it.
So my poor mom had to take a cab from the airport, the shuttles had stopped running by then. $70! I felt awful and I could tell she was annoyed. But she was nice about it this morning after she thought about how she did not really want me out driving in that anyway. And she was even gracious about having to sleep on the couch because my Dad was already staying in the Boy's bedroom (aka the guest room, my son is so sweet about letting people stay in his room)
I have daughter guilt now, especially after driving Mom to the airport just before lunch and the roads were pretty good. Oh well, better to be safe, I would hate for something to happen to me because I didn't listen to my better judgement. I have a total fear of something happening to me while my dh is out of town and my kids being alone:(
I love watching my kids in all their activities and I am so pleased that they can participate in them. But occasionally all the driving and getting preschoolers dressed in eighteen layers and then wrestled into car seats gets a bit much for me. Especially when it seems like the boys have no appreciation at the privilege it is for them to be able to participate and the work and money involved on our part. A thank you once in a while would be nice. And I would really appreciate if there was no complaining about actually going to the activity!
This afternoon I wanted to hibernate from the snow and I think we all needed a break. So on the way home from the airport we stopped at the movie theatre and went to Mr. Magorium's Magic Emporium. It was so awesome! Loved it! and so did the kids. We had the entire theatre to ourselves, so the kids got to relax and be themselves and the little ones got to wander a bit. But man does it cost a lot to take 5 to the movies these days!

Monday, December 03, 2007

Novel excerpt.

Okay, I am laying it all out on the line for you guys here. I honestly did not want to even look at my novel again for a long while, never mind share it with anyone. But I promised an excerpt, so her it is. Very rough draft full of run on sentences. Thanks for reading:)

Kate awoke curled up against Michael's body, her head resting on his arm and his other arm wrapped around her waist. She smiled as she thought of those large, calloused hands and the way they rasped gently against her soft skin. The way he stroked her entire body with them until she was shivering with pleasure, how they fell asleep still entwined in each other's arms. Then she heard the sound that had awakened her in the first place. Coughing, more like barking, coming from the nursery.
She slipped into her robe and quickly made her way across the hall. She could hear the wheezy, rasping breaths coming from her little girl, she picked her up and Sarah started to whimper. Her breathing becoming even more laboured as she awoke and started to cry. Kate reminded herself not to panic as she quickly carried Sarah into the bathroom and shut the door. She turned the hot water on full blast and pulled on the shower. As the room filled with steam she sat on the toilet seat rocking Sarah and singing quietly to her, stroking her sweaty brow. Kate reminded herself that she had done this before, sat in this spot rocking her other children, helping then to calm down and calm their breathing as the steam opened up their tiny airways. They had all been fine, this was no different. Croup caused their already tiny throats to become inflamed and swollen, partially blocking their airways. When they awoke in the night coughing and struggling, they became afraid and then they would cry causing even more respiratory distress.
Sarah seemed calmed by her mother's caresses, but her breathing was still very laboured. Kate lifted Sarah Grace's jammie top and looked at her chest. She could see Sarah Grace's delicate skin sucking in between her ribs and at the base of her throat with every breath. Her little girl was still in quite a bit of distress, so Kate turned off the shower, grabbed a blanket and took Sarah out on the front porch. She snuggled them into the swing and wrapped the blanket tightly around them as she held Sarah and let the night air work it's magic. On many different occasions she had taken the boys to emergency when they were in this kind of distress and more than once, the act of taking them outside to breathe that cool air, had done the trick before they ever got to the hospital.
Occasionally they had needed more care, often a inhaled steroid to bring down the vocal cord inflammation, one time Jonah had actually been admitted to the children's ward with a particularly bad bout of croup. They just couldn't get his oxygen levels high enough to release him. Katherine was really hoping that tonight would not be one of those instances. She hoped that the cool air would help her daughter to breathe easier and they would both be able to get some sleep.
They rocked there for a long while, Katherine almost nodding off a few times. She silently prayed as they swung, prayed for Sarah Grace and for all who slept in her home. She thanked God for all her blessings, feeling guilty for how she had been feeling lately. How ungrateful she had been. Asked God to help her feel content, to take away the restlessness that had been plaguing her for months. She peered into the starry heavens, looking for what, she did not know. Then she looked down.
She watched her baby girly with a smile as she calmed and her eyes grew droopy with sleep. “Thank you God”, she breathed. Kate rocked with her fuzzy, pink bundle for a few moments longer, enjoying the warmth and softness of her youngest daughter. Then she carried Sarah Grace back in the house and up the stairs to their room. She tucked her in with Daddy while she got the vaporizer from the closet and filled it up in the en suite sink. After she plugged it in and added some Vick's Vaporub to the reservoir, she crawled into her snug nest with her baby and her husband, wrapped her arms around them both and closed her eyes.
Sleep was evading Katherine as she went over and over the events of the last weeks in her head. It was a bad habit of hers to think too much at bedtime. Often, when she was young, all the embarrassing moments of her life would come to her at night. In her almost asleep state she was vulnerable to the negative inner voices that told her she didn't fit it, she didn't belong, she wasn't good enough. She had learned to keep them at bay by journaling. If she had anything on her mind she could write it down and then she didn't have to think about it any more.
More recently though, the journaling had ceased to be an effective deterrent. She was growing more and more ....... restless, for lack of a better word. She couldn't really put a finger on what was going on, but it scared her. She wanted more than anything to be a loving and caring wife and the mother that her children needed. She wanted to be the woman God intended her to be, but she knew that she was falling far short. And she was tired of feeling like a failure in her own eyes.
As she lay beside those two incredible gifts God had placed in her life, she struggled to find an answer, a solution to her discontent. A why for these feelings. She knew she should lay it all out before God, but she was afraid to bare it all, to actually take out all those feelings and look at them in the light. She was afraid of what lay hidden in her own soul.