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Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Emma's Box of Patience

My daughter has been asking me for a story just for her.  This was a hard one!

"When is Christmas ever going to get here?", Emma asked herself as he paced in her room back and forth back and forth.

"I'm so borreeed, bored, bored." She sat on her bed with her arms crossed and her head down. "School is on a break, dance is on a break and Mom says she needs a break. What good is a break anyway? All a break means is that I'm bored!"

Emma got off her bed and went into the kitchen. She found her mom cleaning up and said, "Mom, I'm bored."

"Really? It's only the third day of Christmas Break and you're bored already?", asked her Mom.

Emma let out a BIG sigh and said, "Yes. There is nothing to do."

Her Mom listed off a bunch of things she could do but Emma said no, no, no to all of them.

"Never mind," said Emma. "I'll find something."

"Good thinking, use your imagination, "said her Mom.

Emma went back to her room. "Use my imagination. Hmm....what can I come up with?"

"Oh! I know! I'll pretend I'm a princess locked in a closet and I'll wait for my prince to come and rescue me!"

She climbed into her closet, found a small spot on the floor where she could sit and hid behind the clothes. "This is perfect," she thought to herself. "Now I'll just wait and my magic prince will use his x-ray vision and find me!"

Emma waited and waited and waited. And waited and waited and waited. After a long while Emma decided that this wasn't a game for one, she better go get her little sister, Elise, and she could be her prince.

"ELISE! Where are you?", Emma shouted from her room. Let's play Princess and Elise!"

"W-H-A-T?" Elise shouted back from the playroom.


"W-H-A-T?" Elise shouted again.

"Why don't you go to the playroom and speak to her there Emma," her mom said sounding annoyed.

"Okay." Emma went to the playroom and explained her game to her little sister.

"Uh, no thanks. I no wanna to. I playing Little People. You wanna play Little Peoples and Elise?"

"NO, I don't! HUMPH!", Emma turned on one heal and stomped back to her room.

"Christmas Break is boring! Who needs Christmas Break anyway? Christmas is NEVER going to get here."

Emma's Mom came into her room after she heard the commotion. "What's the problem Emma?"

"I'm so bored and now Elise won't even play with me. She makes me so mad sometimes. Little sisters are no fun and Christmas Break is no fun!"

"You won't think so in a few days. Just find your patience and you'll be surprised what patience will bring you."

"What? More presents?!" Emma asked with a smile.

"You know that Christmas isn't just about gifts." Said her mom.

"I know, it's about giving, Christmas spirit, Baby Jesus and the final countdown to being good!"

"Well yes you're right about those things, but being good is a smart idea for the whole year, not just the week before Christmas. Patience brings you love and joy and your own sense of magic in your heart."

"You mean I can really have magic? It's really real?" asked Emma.

"Magic is in all of us, we just have to figure out how to use it."

"Do you have magic Mom?" Emma asked.

"I like to think so," said her Mom as she kissed her on the top of her head.

Emma thought long and hard about patience. "Patience means waiting and waiting and Mom says good things will come. I don't know what patience looks like though. How can I find it if I don't know what it looks like?"

Emma began to search her room, "Is it under my bed? Is it in my closet? Is it behind my table?" She decided to look around the house, "It's got to be here somewhere," she said.

After hours of looking and searching and exploring Emma became very frustrated and went to talk to her Mom.

"Mom, I've been looking all over the house for my patience but I can't find it! What does it look like EXACTLY?"

"Oh Emma, it is not something you can see or touch. Patience is something that is inside your heart and your mind."

"Okay, then what EXACTLY does that mean?" Emma asked even more frustrated than before.

"Hmm.. remember when you wanted to get your ears pierced and we said you had to wait until your birthday?"


"Well you waited six long months and then your birthday came and you got your birthday wish. So for you that time patience came in the form of pierced ears. It is different for everyone. For me it was waiting for you to be born, you were two weeks overdue and I thought the world was going to come to an end if you hadn't come out already! And then I got a call from the hospital to say that it was time to get you out! So patience for me was finally holding you in my arms instead of my belly."

Emma giggled.

"Patience can be the moment you finally learn that special step in ballet or tap, or when you figure out that really long word in school. For some people it's that moment when the Doctor says they are better after hurting for a long from being sick."

"Oh. Okay I think I understand. Practice means patience and waiting means patience. But why do you say, "Find your patience", if it's nothing I can see or touch?"

"I guess I mean practice your patience and you'll see it that way. I have an idea.", said Emma's Mom. She gave Emma a square red box with a lid and a white bow on top. She opened it up and inside was a white shiny lining but nothing inside.

"What's this for?" asked Emma. "There is nothing in it."

"This box is a good place to keep your patience and see it grow. Close your eyes, make a wish in your mind and then whisper it in the box. Close the lid tight so it doesn't escape. When you're waiting for something to happen, like in this case Christmas Day, and you feel like you're losing your patience, take the box in your hands and squeeze the lid on tighter and tighter. That way it will remind you that the day is coming and not to let go of the magic it will bring you."

Emma smiled took the box and went into her room. She took the lid off and whispered her wish inside, just as her mom explained. "I wish for Christmas Day to get here, to see my cousins, and family, to eat LOTS of chocolate and to open lots of presents! But don't tell mom that last part!" She closed the lid as quick as she could and put the box on top of her dresser.

Emma stared at that red box for days, picking it up and squeezing it every now and then to make sure her patience wasn't escaping. Finally it was Christmas Eve. ONE MORE SLEEP! "You can do this." Emma said to herself. At bedtime she and her sister put out cookies for Santa and carrots for the reindeer. Mom tucked her into bed and kissed her on her cheek.

"How's the patience going Emma?"

"Really good, it tried to get out but I stuffed it back in and now we have one more sleep!"

"Good news!" said her mom. "See you in the morning, but not too early right?"

"I can't promise that Mom!"

Emma fell fast asleep and dreamed of snow and treats and presents. Before she knew it she opened her eyes and she could feel that Santa finally came. She rushed out of her room and woke everyone up.

"MERRY CHRISTMAS EVERYONE!" she yelled as she jumped on her parents bed.

Emma sat and looked around the living room after the presents were all open and smiled. She was happy she had her patience with her and thought she should share it. She went to her room grabbed the red box and gave it to her mom.

"What's this for?" asked her mom.

"Well I was thinking and I thought you could use it too. You know when you say that you are about to lose your patience when you're getting mad at us?"

Her Mom nodded.

"Just shove it back in here and hold it tight, that way you won't actually lose it and we won't get into trouble!"

"I'll do my best Emma. Thank-you. I love you. Merry Christmas Baby."

"Merry Christmas Mommy."

Friday, December 10, 2010

Super Domestic Diva/Engineer!

Multitasking and busy took on a whole new meaning this week! The Christmas season is upon us and the BIG day is soon to arrive. Do I have the shopping done...NOPE! Do I have the tree up...YUP! (creatively decorated by my girls!) Do I have Christmas baking done...NOPE! (I did but we ate it.) So maybe like, or unlike, other wives and mothers I still have a lot to do! Instead of tackling the shopping I decided that finishing our spare room in the basement is far more important...and to do it without my husband's knowledge. (so shhh..he hasn't noticed yet!)

Almost two years ago we paid to have some rooms built, a spare bedroom, bathroom and laundry room. Problem being our contractor stopped at the drywall stage(he didn't like the mudding/taping/sanding junk) and we knew this going into it. We decided we could do the rest ourselves. Well a few coats of mud was put on and then left to dry...for 2 years. (I don't recommend that brand of mud by the way!) Looking at it every second day for a long time I thought I'd take matters into my own hands and just get it done already.

It took me four days to get to the ready to prime and paint stage. As I am in this room sanding, sanding, sanding I am realizing why dry-wallers get paid so much, and why my husband didn't feel the urge to get back at it! It is a painful, slow and dusty job, not to mention the fact that I have no idea what I'm doing, but whatever...I'm doing it! Even with drywall dust in my eyes and up my nose causing some really sticky boogers I still finished what I had to do! And then the final coat of mud was next...and this is where the fun began.

I found a BIG container of mud unopened, and of course it needed to be mixed. I found a drill with a large egg beater type attachment on it. (Well that must be what I should use to mix this pail!) Easy enough! I place the mixer in the mud about halfway down, bracing myself a little. Pull the trigger and before I knew it the room was splattered with mud, my pants and feet covered and the pail is on its side....(Huh...I guess it's a little more powerful than my hand mixer in the kitchen...note to self...a POWER tool has some power!
) Standing in awe of the mess I made in a matter of five seconds I didn't know what to clean up first. Elise pokes her head in to see what the noise is all about and says, "Oh Mommy..What you do?" "I don't know, I do not know." I answered. I get it cleaned up as best I could and grab a wooden spoon to finish least I can control that!

I worked until noon everyday to ensure I wouldn't be caught, made sure Elise was fed lunch (although she was in her glory as snacks were at her finger tips and Mommy's response to those snacks was "Whatever...I don't care!" which by the way I heard her telling her Little People that same phrase! Oops!) and supper was planned and prepared on time, laundry not piling up etc. Took the girls to dance and hair appointments, helped with homework, kept in touch with friends and family, and didn't neglect my husband at all!

I sanded for the last time today, it's not perfect, but not bad. I keep picturing the Holmes on Homes dude standing in his overalls and muscle shirt shaking his head as he inspects my work saying, "These are good people, just wanting some extra rooms...they didn't deserve this...always check out your contractors people, always check your contractors!"

Next week is painting and I just might get caught at that time with all the pesky fumes and stuff, but I'm hoping to have it done, with the bed set up ready for some Christmas company! I do have to mention that I have done all of this with my new set of gel nails and have not broken one yet! Shout out to Lindsay for keeping this Domestic Diva/Engineer beautiful/functional and at her finest all at the same time! I wish my fellow friends/moms/wives a successful holiday season and may you finish all that you have put on your to do, baking, decorating, wrapping, Christmas concerts, and maybe some home renos! Merry Christmas ladies!

Saturday, December 4, 2010

Two Mothers, One Love

In July I entered a short story writing contest, encouraged by my Aunty Lois.  I did not win but was honored to hear that my story made it into their book called Formation, along with other Canadian writers.  So here is my entry.

Two Mothers, One Love

Two mothers, though strangers, show each other that the act of selfless, unconditional love is the hardest life lesson to go through, and yet worthwhile at the same time. Together through the process of adoption they share a common ground; placing the wellbeing of a child ahead of their own.

She stood by the window looking through the clear glass, gently rubbing her pregnant tummy. With a sigh, she whispers softly to her unborn child,

"Know that I love you, and I always will. Please understand that when I made the decision to place you in adoption, I did it so you could follow whatever dreams you want to fulfill, as I was not able to help make these dreams come true. I wish you all the love and contentment that you can possibly take in. And know that my love for you is, and always will be abundant. You will for eternity be in my heart, and in no way far from my thoughts. I did this not to make my life easier, but to make sure you never had to carry a concern or burden because of my decisions. I chose your family with my heart, and feel confident that they will raise you the way I would have. The day is coming soon when you will take your first breath. I will be there to hear your voice, and give you your first kiss. I pray that you feel my love through that kiss for a lifetime."

As a tear gently dropped from her eye, she felt her baby give a gentle nudge from inside her, as though in response to her mother's wishes.

She sat on her bed looking at the picture of her daughter on the bedside table. A smile swept across her face, and a tear trickled down her cheek. She longed to give her daughter; now 6 years old, a sibling and to see her family grow. Years of trying for another baby and the heartbreaks of multiple miscarriages had led her and her husband to adoption. After a year of making their way through the adoption process the news finally came that they had been chosen as a newborn baby girl's adoptive family. Filled with as much excitement as the day she found out she was pregnant, she was overwhelmed with elation and emotion. She took a deep breath and spoke softly to the mother of the baby, that will soon be welcome into her life.

"I am and will be forever grateful to you for your precious gift. I promise I will love and treasure your daughter just as I have my very own. She will have a good life; full of love and happiness, more than you could wish for. She will grow up a strong and self-assured woman. She will know how much you loved her, and that you always will. I wish you love and happiness, that your worry soon subsides, and your heart fills with joy, just as you have filled mine."

As she wiped the tears from her eyes, the door to the bedroom slowly opened. Her daughter came in and took her mother's hand, "Mommy, let's go get my sister."

The baby feels a gentle kiss fall on her cheek. She moves her head towards the touch and for a moment, opens her eyes. She coos as she hears whispers of a recognizable voice. Her mother gently places her down in the bassinet and squeezes her tiny hand one last time. The baby falls fast asleep, and wakes to a different whisper though just as soothing. She feels yet another kiss fall upon her cheek. The baby wraps her delicate hand around her new mother's finger and fixates on the fresh face before her. She lets out a soft sigh in acceptance and snuggles into the embrace of her mother, still grasping her finger.

With the touch of the baby's hand, both mother's hearts distend with love; confirming that their wishes, though silent, were heard. A silent wish made, a silent promise pledged, forever acknowledged with each milestone passed on the journey through the baby's life. Two mothers, though strangers, forever bonded by a simple touch of a baby, and their ability to selflessly give unconditional love for the wellbeing of a child.

Polar Expressions Publishing

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

A Remembrance Day to Remember

Today was a day to remember on so many levels and was shared with my "partner in crime" in this life we know as "motherhood". It started off as a normal Wednesday morning, or so we hoped! My sister-in-law, Dawn-Marie, or as I like to call her one of my actual "sisters", had dropped off Julie so that Emma and she could walk to school together. With a frazzled look about her I questioned her on what could possibly be the matter?!! Turns out the kids had a Remembrance Day Assembly at which they would be singing and it was very important that we attend. Not knowing that the kids were performing we hadn't really planned on going. The girls headed out the door, Emma in her Sparks attire and promises of seeing them soon. The girls told us it was first thing in the morning, and we kind of thought it would be around eleven, but they insisted it was not. Dawn-Marie called the school twice to try and find out what time it was but there was for some reason no answer. So off we go to the school at 8:45, only to run into a teacher that told us it was at 10:45. Okay then. Back to my place for coffee where we discussed our next plan of attack to get back to the school with all the little ones in tow.

With fifteen minutes to spare Dawn-Marie gets a phone call from Julie that she must be in her Brownie uniform in order to march in with her troop to kick off the assembly. Normally that would have been okay but as luck would have it, the baby was still sleeping and "Bam-Bam" was still at his Wednesday morning activity not leaving extra time to fly into the school and get Julie changed. So a quick phone call to me and between the two of us, managed to get her changed and marching in on time!  PHEW!

If you can remember what it's like to have little ones you know how hard it is to keep them quiet especially during such an important event. That being said, our presence was well known as soon as 11:00 hit. Silence covered the gymnasium for the respectful moment of silence for our fallen soldiers. And a moment was all Bam-Bam could take. "BASKETBALL AUNTY!" he shouts as he points to the nets around the gym. "Yup," I whispered. "Sshhh...let's be quiet." "NO SSSHHH!" he shouts back. Trying hard not to laugh I pretend I didn't hear him.

We got through the ceremony, barely. Kept him busy with candy and a quick walk to the potty, the kids did pretty good overall. Despite Bam-Bam telling the kids to be quiet as they sang O Canada, and God Save the Queen! It was a good, successful day I would say! The girls sang with their class and did us proud, for a moment we forgot just how much of an effort it was to get there with little ones and missing uniform!

Emma got home from school and again I told her what a great job she did and how proud I was of her. Elise gave her a high five and off she went to unwind from her day. I was in my room folding laundry when Emma comes in and says, "Mom, I'm really sad right now." Me thinking she's going to say she's sad because she won't be in school for the next five days, I quickly say, "Oh yeah...why?" Her big brown eyes well up with tears, her chin and her lip quivering she says, "I'm sad for the soldiers. The ones that died." Well open up the flood gates of your mother's heart why don't ya? WHAM! I'm in there with her lip quivering, tears flowing I grab her and give her a big squeeze. "Emma, you have the biggest heart I have ever seen on such a little girl."

I was impressed that she actually understood what Remembrance Day really means. She said that the soldiers died for us to have peace and so that we can live here. And more tears flowed from her eyes, I held her tight and rubbed her back. "Thanks Emma for having a big heart and for loving even a perfect stranger and being thankful for what you have."

She left my room and came back in with a paper that read, "Soldiers thik you" (Soldiers thank-you). "Mom I want to give this to a soldier, can we find one?"
Shivers ran up my spine as I hugged her and kissed her on the top of her head. She has always been an emotional girl, connected with others in such a unique way. I try hard to help her grow with and learn about when and how to use these emotions but today she showed me that her heart is her heart, and I wouldn't change a thing. A day that began in a bit of an uproar, ended with a life lesson from my six year old. Never forget, never forget, never forget.

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Curve Balls

When life throws you a curve ball do you swerve to catch it or swerve to dodge it? The easy way out is to dodge it. If you go in for the catch, it might hit you in the face. But, if you have the right tools and the right team behind you, the catch is always going to be worth the risk. I applaud those that go in for the catch. They may get hit in the face but will go for it again and again and when the timing is right the ball lands right in their hands.

I love the saying; "Smile at a stranger because you never know what they are going through too." ( Or something to that effect) There is always something going on in every person's life whether it is directly affecting them or indirectly. Curve balls are being thrown every second, sometimes we are the catchers and sometimes we are the pitchers. It's hard to believe but when we make a bad decision (pitching) in our lives it does affect other people. And when we see that it really has affected other people, ignoring it isn't an option anymore. What baffles me is that some people keep ignoring and ignoring until the problem has gone beyond repair, and yet they still can't see that they just might have been the initial pitcher.

Bad things happen to good people and good people do bad things. That's just an unfortunate fact in our life journey. It's hard, in the heat of the moment, to think about what our actions would do to others and cause the ripple effect. The majority of the time we have the common sense to think of others and sometimes we can be just plain selfish. I'll just do it and deal with it later. But when is later too late?

Eventually our bad decisions or curve balls do catch up with us. Do we accept responsibility for our actions or do we ignore it and hope it goes away? Most of the time when we ignore things the curve ball has been caught and thrown back in our face. Is this when we finally take responsibility for our actions or do we start to deny and blame, causing more pitching on our part.

It seems as though every decision we make big or small, good or bad does, in the long run, affect others. As hard as that is to deal with it's what we are faced with. There are a lot of people that can see the difference and unfortunately a lot of people that simply cannot.

At times it may seem that the world is stacked against you. But in reality it is NOT. You are in control of your actions, your decisions and your role in this world. God didn't make you steal that lipstick, or cheat on your spouse or abuse your child. You chose that action. Now deal with it. Accept it and think of the person that your bad decision has hurt. Did they deserve to be in the path of your destruction?

Stop denying and start dealing. Stop throwing and start catching. Easier said than done, and wishful thinking on all counts. But I've always been a dreamer that one day we will all learn how to just play nice, just like our mothers have always wanted us too.

Saturday, October 2, 2010

The Day The Women Went

I took a very long break from the blog, not to worry I still have lots to say, just haven't taken the time to say it! This summer was busy, short and long all at the same time. Weddings, holidays and a lot of hanging out by our friend's pool! Now we are back in the swing of things, school, dance, Girl Guides, and soon to be ball hockey. My head space is much calmer when we have routine and I'm happy to be back at the grind so to speak.

Last weekend there was a golf tournament here in town put on by The Cougars Women's Hockey Team. I have heard a lot of things about this tournament since we moved here, and this was the first time I had participated. I'll admit some of the stories I had heard made me a little nervous about attending this function. I vowed that I wasn't going to partake in too many "beverages" so not to be the talk of the town! Well that vow was thrown out the window by the second hole! And after the third hole some events of our "golfing" is a bit of a blur.

The truth of the matter is that all the women at this tournament were there for a good time, a break from the roles we all have being wives and mothers, leaders, employees, business owners etc. We were there to just be ourselves. As a friend of mine put it, taking off the all the hats that she wore and putting on hers!

"That's me, unedited!", she said. And that is how we all felt.

How often can we just be crazy and let loose?

Everything went out the window as soon as we drove the first ball off the tee! There was "golf cart surfing", "golf cart derby" and "golf cart car pooling"! Who knew you could put four, six or nine people on one cart! The Marshal certainly had his work cut out for him! He told our team on several occasions that the carts are only for two people at a time. He explained that the year prior there was some damage to the carts because of too many occupants. So I sat down beside this elderly gentleman and asked,

"Do I look like I'm going to break this cart, Sir?"

Because he was an older man he knew the exact answer, and that of course was, "No miss, you are very beautiful. You just can't sit on the back of the cart, that is what the seats are for."

I responded with, "Well how are we going to pick up our balls without stopping and getting off then?"

He knew there was no response to that. He tipped his hat and drove off down the fairway shaking his head. I'm sure he was having a very long day, and is certainly glad that it's over for another year. We, on the other hand, are already getting our teams together recruiting more members and counting down the days until next September!

At first I was worried about what kind of women were going to be at this tournament, and worried what they would think of me, and at the end of the day I was so happy to have been invited and to have been a part of it. I'm sure there are still some that are shaking their heads as to what they actually witnessed, but it was a really good time! We were all there for one purpose and that purpose was to be "free". Free from our "hats". Free from the "rules". And to just let out that crazy inner teenager that we all have! Some expressed themselves with costumes and I must say that the "Milfshakes" were my absolute favourite!

So I thank all the women of Tofield and surrounding areas, The Cougars hockey team and my friends for an amazing day! Letting loose and having fun was just what I needed. The wives and mothers of Tofield were let out for a day and it was, in a word... epic.

Monday, August 9, 2010

Let's See You Get Out of THAT!

Kota, our "puppy", showed us just how smart he really is. While Corey was on holidays he made Kota a dog run, and he did a pretty good job. Kota was very happy to finally be somewhat free and not tied to our apple tree, but tonight he figured out how to escape.

I was bathing the girls when Tasha our other dog started barking like crazy at the front door. Corey was playing Xbox in the living room yelling at Tasha to stop barking. When she didn't listen he got up to see what the commotion was, and when he sees Kota at the front door he asks me, "How did Kota get out?"

"Um, I don't know," I answer as I'm elbow deep in shampoo and bubbles calmly trying to wash Elise's hair as she is screaming in my ear that she "NO WANT TO HAVE BATH!"

He goes outside to assess the situation, puts Kota back in and right in front of Corey Kota escapes again, under the chain link fence, he pushed himself to freedom. Corey grabs some wire to put across the bottom of the entire length of the fence. It took him about a half hour to do this. Once he finished he looks at Kota and says, "There! Let's see you get out of that! HA!"

Corey comes back inside just about to sit down and start playing again, when Kota makes another appearance in the backyard OUT of his run.

"Uh, Honey! Kota's out!"

"What? How the......?"

Out he goes again, more assessing, some head scratching, some thinking. I made the suggestion to grab the pegs from the trailer that we use to hold the awning in place, to hook the fence down. He agrees that that just might work. So he finds them and fastens them in. We lure Kota back into the run.

"NOW, let's see you get out of that!"

Kota sits and waits for us to go back in, I walk to the window and boom, out he goes AGAIN!

"Uh, Honey! He got out again!"

"Geez...(bleep, bleep, bleep) dog!"

Now Corey grabs a board and two big bricks from our fire pit. Puts it in place with meaning, and with a kick at the ground and a point of his finger he says, "THERE, now let's see you get out of THAT! HUMPH!" and off he walks into the house.

I sit on the deck and watch. Kota moves the brick out of way with one flick of his paw, manoeuvres his head over the board and under the fence. Now this took a little more doing on his part but he got out no problem.

"HONEY! He's getting oooouuuuutttt!" No answer.

"COREY! He's out now!"

"NO he's not, WHATEVER!" he answers as he thinks I'm joking, well hopes that I'm joking.

"YES! YES he is!"

Jokes over, now he's mad, not finding the humour in it as I still do! It's hard to keep my facial expressions under wraps and laughing at that moment would not have been a good idea, so I chose to go inside, grinning from ear to ear. He gets him back in, moves the brick to the outside of the run, this time doesn't say a word to Kota and walks back into the house. Muttering some sweet nothings, I'm sure, under his breath.

Finally Kota is secure in the run, but is in the process of moving his body across the fence to find out if he can get out somewhere else, so we are crossing our fingers that he won't figure out that the rest of the fence is just as flexible. It's only a matter of time though.

And so Kota I take back all the times I called you a dumb dog, cause clearly you are pretty smart!

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Big City Driving

I clearly have been moulded into the small town way of life, laid back, voluntarily waving at people I don't know, no traffic to fight and no road rage to deal with. Today I had to drive through the city to take Emma to her annual check-up in St. Albert. And every year I feel more and more like small town folk. I've never liked big crowds or lots of traffic but it seems as though the city is not getting any smaller and drivers are not getting any nicer. Despite all the campaigns out there for safe driving it seems they are making an opposite reaction in the big city.

Today I learned that keeping a cars length between me and the car in front of me is only an invitation to others to cut in front of me, and not keeping a safe distance. I also learned that stopping abruptly trying to avoid being t-boned by a cab driver, will cause the cab driver to also stop abruptly but proceed to make obscene gestures and yell at you because you avoided an accident and possibly death that he would have caused. He also taught my 6 year old some words that caused her to ask what they mean, and honestly I really couldn't give her the proper definition other than...(never mind, it's a bad word do not repeat it!).

I am not a slow highway driver, I do speed but not enough to warrant a ticket, but in the city I tend to stick to the limits because of all the cameras and radar traps, I just don't want to pay the fines. And this especially goes for construction zones! But the words SPEED FINES DOUBLE mean nothing to city drivers, and quite frankly if you adhere to the limits be prepared for major road rage. I would like to thank the city driver for schooling me today in the construction zone. I sure learned my lesson when you came up on my rear end so fast and then swerved around to cut me off and slam on your brakes. That was just awesome, my kids won't have seat belt burn over that one at all. I'm sorry I didn't bet the memo that 95 was the new speed limit for construction zones. The workers must be so relieved that we can go faster so that they will be splattered all over the road instead of just in one spot.

Granted I am a small town person and have been for 4 years now. We don't have to fight traffic and we don't even have to wait for a traffic light! The only things we wait for are trains, crosswalks and the seniors in town when they make a right or a left turn. At first this used to bother me, and now I welcome it. But to brush up on my city driving maybe I'll practice some of the gestures in town and see what kind of reaction I'll get! Or I'll just take some anti-anxiety medication for each drive into the city.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Is It PMS? Or is it really ME?

I'm going to open right up here and discuss my flaws that I have come to realize I actually have during that great time the medical world has dubbed PMS. For me, there is only about a week out of every month that I feel somewhat "normal" and the other three weeks I will blame on my cycle. I could just chalked it up to the three weeks being my actual self since it consumes more of my time, but then I would just look and sound like a bitch, and well if you don't live with me, then I'm not, I'm quite pleasant to be around! (or at least that's what I like to think!)

The physical pain of PMS isn't really my issue, it's my mood swings and hormones that I try to keep under wraps. Since I've been in my 30's I've noticed that these trips down the pre-menstrual highway have become a lot more bumpy and unpredictable, almost like a train derailment. You know things are bad when the simple sound of breathing makes me want to turn my head and hiss at the person that is near me making the annoying sound they must do to stay alive! Don't get me wrong, if they are across the room, I'm good but if they are sitting beside me or behind me it's like nails on a chalkboard. I know this is bad and it's even worse that I can't vocalize my problem! I would love to say, "Must you breathe so loud, I'm trying to write a very important blog entry here!" But I'm grateful that I haven't passed the point of no return just yet and made the mistake of vocalizing what I'm thinking. I know that my time will come though when I hit the journey of menopause, because by that point I really won't care what I sound like!

Another one of my not so favourite sounds is chewing. I'm not talking about rude chewing either, because then I could say something. Nope for me it's just normal chewing of the food with a closed mouth, it could be crunchy food, soft food, or even soup! For some reason the sound is amplified like I'm sitting in the front row of a Marilyn Manson concert. I have been so annoyed sometimes that I have removed myself from the table and went to eat in another room! That's right I said it for all to see!

I am an emotional person by nature, but when the hormones are turned up on high I am all over the map. Laughing one minute, crying a half second later, then angry, and back to laughing. Commercials are the worst for that trigger! No word of a lie, one time there were a sequence of commercials that made me do this in a very short time span. The DQ commercial for the flame thrower burger where the dude takes a bite then goes to talk and flames shoot out of his mouth; makes me laugh every time, then the CIBC commercial where the dad is giving his daughter away at her wedding and gives her a big fat cheque too; leaves me bawling, then the Always commercial that ends in "have a happy period", yup ANGER; then the Cadbury commercial with the clucking bunny, total laughter! If that's not an emotional roller coaster, I don't know what is! And my poor family that had to witness that, I'm sure they were searching for the Midol for me, but I happened to be out of it that day.

My vocabulary becomes very limited as well. My husband will lovingly ask, "What's your problem?" and I lovingly answer with the stink eye, "NOTHING." To which he replies, "Oh." He'll try again, and ask, "So, how was your day?" And then I don't try and say with a hiss, "FINE." Then you see the light bulb go off in his head and he knows what time of month it is, and quietly moves on. The kids ask, "What's for dinner Mommy?" I answer, "NOTHING!" "Why?" they ask scared that really aren't going to eat for the next few weeks. "Because the only thing Mommy wants to see, smell and consume right now is chocolate, and that is not good for YOU, get nothing!" Emma has been in the family longer than Elise so she gets it already, just walk away and Mommy will stop. But Elise still has a few years before she gets it, and will continue on the quest of" what's for dinner?"

Eventually they get fed, and we sit at the table like a family and talk about our day. I have" nothing" to say because it was" fine", and the sound of them breathing and chewing at the same time causes me to explode internally or like I said before leave the room entirely. Sometimes family dinners are not the way to go in our house, as the Swanson Frozen dinner people claim they do. They may keep my kids out of trouble and off of drugs later on in life, but for now, in the Jack household, they are giving them more ammo for their weekly therapy sessions. I do hope they don't do drugs, but if they do, I hope I find them, and then maybe Mommy will be easier to live with!

Monday, June 28, 2010

Do You Work?

Recently I was asked by a woman if I worked. I could end the blog here and you could probably fill in the blanks as to how I handled this question, but seeing how I "don't work", I have the time to let you know exactly how it went down.

I was grocery shopping in the middle of the week, in the middle of the day with both girls in tow. One screaming that she wanted to walk and not be in the cart, the other "helping" me shop by loading the cart with all the "healthy" food she could find. Not really a moment where I felt like chit chatting with strangers and not a good moment to be asked questions by the Wal-Mart credit card person who was trying to get me to fill out the application as she followed me down each aisle. At first I politely ignored her, but she was a persistent little bugger and decided that she would be" helpful" by asking questions as I shopped and she would fill out the application for me.

"What is your name?"


"Oh, no your legal name."


"Okay, what is your date of birth?"

"I can't remember it was so long ago."

"Hmmm....okay well, do you work? What is your occupation?"

And that is when I could no longer play got ugly.....and fast.

"Yes as a matter of fact I do, and you are interrupting me as I do it! My occupation is, Mommy as I stated in my name. Imagine that, my name and my occupation are the same damn word! I work from 6:30 am until 10:00 pm every single day including holidays. Holidays require a double shift, and if someone is sick I'm pulling an all nighter! I do dishes, laundry, clean bathrooms and toilets, make meals, vacuum, kiss the boo boos away, scare the monsters back to where they came from, and wake up the next day to do it all over again. My income is less than you make here, but what I lack in income I am rewarded in love and hugs from these two right in front of you. A little word of advice my dear would be that you rephrase your question to Do you work OUTSIDE the home. You just may get a better response, and when someone ignores you that means they aren't interested in your credit card!"

"Right.....sorry about that....."

I am not going to start a war over who is more overworked a working outside the home mom or a stay at home mom, I believe we are equal in our endeavours. I'm sure both kinds of moms are a little envious of the other, one would like to be home more and the other would like to get out more. But my days get just as busy as the next moms and they all sometimes mesh together. The credit card lady caught me on a really stressful busy day and I'm sure I could have handled her differently. But I did not, yes she was just doing her job but so was I. My job requires me to be an annoyance to my family, her job requires her to be an annoyance to the public. Either way we were both annoying to each other.

Saturday, June 12, 2010

My Army

Something we can all relate to in our lives is some form of loss or tragedy, no one wants to experience it, but at some point we all have to. That is the common denominator, how we deal with or work through that loss is entirely up to us. We cannot control our future, but we can control our actions. We chose our own path; is it one of further destruction or one that we can learn from? The harder road is the one we take where we actually have learned from. It takes more work on our parts, more heartache in some cases but in the end the most rewarding. For some it is the road less travelled.

Choosing to be the victim, for me, seems to be more work. You smile less, you laugh less, you are not your true self. You lose yourself , and ultimately lose out on life. We all deal with things in a different way, some take longer than others to move on, that in itself is neither right, nor is it wrong. What is wrong is when you become a "toxic" energy and in turn start to take others down with you. Others that were there in the beginning to help dust yourself off, and help you take a deep breath, put one foot in front of the other and move forward from the past. Those that helped comfort and support, lend an ear, give a hug and wipe the tears. Those that try to show you that you are stronger than what has happened, you, as a person, are stronger than the situation or the other person that hurt you. I believe that we all are blessed with these kind of people in our lives, whether we know it or not, there is someone there that wants to help and wants to see you help yourself.

I truly am blessed with an army of people from family to friends, and friends that are family. I feel that some I have taken for granted, though not on purpose, just could have shown a better appreciation for the role they play in my life and my family's life. I find that I have guarded my heart to new relationships as I'm sure we all have for obvious reasons. I am the one to push away or step back, and I am the one to just trust the future.

As tough as I try to portray myself, I really am not hard as nails. With an outpouring of love and support from my true friends and family, today I woke up with the sun shining through my window, trees moving freely in the wind, and the birds singing their songs welcoming a new day. I decided that yes, it is a new day, the past is the past, and there is always a tomorrow. I learned this week that there are two fantastic women willing to get to know me and wanting the best for me. As I do for them, and that ultimately I am thankful for what has happened, because from a bad situation and toxic relationship sprouted two more soldiers in my army. I look forward to good times, good conversation, much laughter and a positive outlook for things that have happened and things that are to come our way.

I know I do not say thank-you enough to my circle of family and friends for their constant love and support, so I say it now. Thanks for backing me, lifting me up and just loving me for me through the good times and the not so good times. Without all of you I would not have the great life that that I live.

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

My Childbirth Truths

I've been thinking about the birth of my girls, and yes, two of the best days of my life so far, goes without saying, but also two of the strangest days of my life. Since I was a little girl I KNEW I wanted to be a mom, I just didn't know exactly how it would feel to deliver them. You can read all about pregnancy /childbirth and typically what to expect, but until you have gone through it, you will never truly know.

I never had the pleasure of going into labour "naturally", both times I had the opportunity to have my body pumped with synthetic hormones to trick my girls into thinking that it was time to come out. There is this gel that was used for Emma, that was stuck up my unit, which was to make the uterus go into contractions. We waited for many hours for this action to take place and all that happened down there was an annoying sensation that my ovaries were on fire, and that I wanted to stick ice cubes up there to turn down the heat. Next came the hormones pumped through my veins. That brought on more action, and I was told do walk around the halls to help move things along.

With your first baby, things tend to be slower in the delivery department, your body hasn't done it before, it knows that it has to, but isn't too sure which way to shoot the baby out. There are many" techniques" that the nurses will give you to help open up your cervix and get it to dilate to the winning number of 10 cm. I did laps around the hospital, sat on an exercise ball and rolled around the room, nothing was making Emma come out any faster. So more hormones were given. That brought on contractions hard and fast, but still I would not dilate. I was in a lot of pain, but could not get the ever loving epidural until I was in the right "window" of opportunity. So instead they gave me "laughing gas". It made me laugh alright, at the idea that this stuff would take the "edge" off. It was making my visitors high more so than myself.

Finally I was ready for the epidural, (and if you are a woman that did this without this form of heaven -on- earth, you are my hero, a little on the Extreme Sports side, but still, my hero!), they brought the forms in for me to sign so I wouldn't try and sue them if the dude slipped and put me in a wheelchair for the rest of my life. I said," I promise I won't sue you, you are like my new best friend if you can make me comfortable." The best part was being told to hold still between contractions, (uh, right, I'll hold still but you have like 2 minutes to shove that huge needle into my spine and make my world a happy place for the duration of this miracle of birth.) He made my day in two deep breaths, my body was numb from my armpits down, I was peeing in a bag and finally giving my husband looks of "love" instead of "you are never touching me again".

I fell asleep for little catnaps of 20 minutes here and there and finally I was ready to push. And push, and push, and push, for 6 hours straight. The epidural had worn off and it was time for more, the Dude came back and did his wonderful job of making women in labour comfortable.( I bet he has like a gazillion "friends" on Facebook!) More pushing, pushing, pushing and nothing.

We had to call in more Doctors to help get her out, some complications presented itself, so another team of specialists were lining the room waiting for Emma. There must have been 10 or more strangers in the room all watching the action coming from the lower region of my body. And when you hear women tell you that once you've had a kid all modesty that you had, will be out the window; it's true. It was like Old MacDonald's Farm by the time she finally came out of my body. " With a snip, snip, here and forceps going there, here a push, there a pull, everywhere a scream heard! OHHHHHHHH, Old Mac Catharine had her first baby....E-I-E- OOUUUCCCHH!" We heard her cry and all was well, I was tired, so very tired and have been ever since. But it wasn't too bad since I went on to have Elise. (Although when it was time for Elise, I had the Epidural Dude ordered and ready to go by the time we parked the truck!)

This time, my husband did not help me out, as per mine and his request. ( Seems as though seeing how my "stuff" can morph itself from "pleasure zone" to "baby landing strip", didn't sit well with him.) So my sister "in-law", Teresa, was my coach. Corey was allowed in the room until it was push time.

Teresa was a great help, she put up with my complaining, my moaning, and my moments where I thought I was being funny while high on morphine. But really, I was being funny she just didn't get it until a couple of years later. I had seen the movie, The 40 Year Old Virgin, and while he is getting his chest waxed, through the pain he screams, "OHHHH KELLY CLARKSON!" So after a painful contraction I yelled the same! (She hadn't seen the movie nor did the nurse that was in the room, so "looks" were exchanged between the two of them and I was written off as high, not funny! )

Corey made the comment, "Why are you moaning so much you just had an epidural it should all be good." To which Teresa answered for me, "It's like you have to poop really bad and can't! You have to hold it in no matter how uncomfortable you are!"

"Oh." And that is when he made his exit. (smart!)

Once I was able to push Elise out, things went much smoother than with Emma, no snipping, no forceps just some long pushes and out she came. Tired again, but like I said before, I've been tired ever since.

After these precious little miracles are born, your body goes through some changes that will be "unknown" to you, let alone the people that surround and live with you. My hormone balance was so out of whack that I cried if Corey didn't say "hello" in the right tone, or I wanted to rip his nose off if he was breathing too loud while sleeping. Every minute was hit or miss with the tears or laughter or anger, but don't worry, you'll balance out in about 6 to 8 weeks! 

Through it all, of course I'm happy to have had them, but NO, we are not having more babies. With every sneeze, cough or jump, I am reminded of the "labour" I went through to bring these beautiful girls into the world, and I admire my stretch marks as trophies to a job well done. My body will never be the same nor will my life. Although, I am blessed to have healthy kids, and blessed that with each "time out" I give them, at the end of the day, I also get an "I love you Mommy." And that my friends was worth showing my "womanhood" to the world, and crying over spilled milk, or maybe it was the milk that engorged my breasts, due to pain or just how unbelievably HUGE they were! But that is a whole other chapter!

Monday, May 3, 2010

Stress Turns Sweet

It's been a quiet week for blogging, but a hectic week none the less! Still on the "potty mission", and that is just never ending, well the laundry is never ending! We can put a man on the moon, but we can't make potty training a breeze,(well maybe someone has, or at least they claim to, if I pay them $47.95, they'll tell me their secret to training in just 3 short days! Yup, my lily white a** you can!!!) As you can tell we aren't quite there yet with the potty, but I hope it will be before she's 20! So enough bathroom talk, I thought I'd finally share something else......

I had to bring the girls with me to hip hop, Corey had ball hockey and I can't miss any classes, it's crunch time and I have a lot of practicing to do! The girls were so excited to see Mommy's version of what groovin' looks like, and I was just excited to get out of the house from potty lockdown.

I gave them both the "talk" all the way to class,

"Be good. Don't run around, don't scream, just sit and watch, okay? Do you both hear me?"

I hear, " Yes Mom!" from just one little voice in the back seat.


(giggle) "YETH Mommy.....I no run 'round..." (giggle)

I swear she was crossing her fingers behind her back while she said that because she so did NOT hear me!

Warm up begins, music pumping, bodies moving,( mine cracking), and you can just see Elise's "inner devil" come to life from her toes to the top of her head. She gets up watching me, watch her, I give her the stink eye, she looks away, and shakes her little booty. Small gestures at first and then all out, she got so excited she did what she thought was going to be a somersault, but turned into a flip, and she whacked her back. To her rescue I go to make sure she could breathe! All good, she shook it off. Again I tell her to sit and watch. I join back into the warm up and off she goes again, shake, shake, shakin' her groove thang!

We start the stretching portion of our warm up, (not my favourite part for so many reasons), and Elise decides that this would be a great time to join in again. She's trying to copy us and did a pretty good job, until , she fell on her head. So she figured that it would be fun to climb all over me in the middle of some kind of leg stretching deal. ( It hurts without a toddler on your back let alone with one moving all over you!) I try to move her back to her spot by Emma who is being soooooo good, but as soon as I did that she was up. I decide to just ignore her and let her have fun. Ignoring Elise is just not possible......

Now it's time for push-ups! Elise gets on my back. The other ladies in the class start laughing, "Ha Ha, let's see how many you can do NOW!" I managed to do 9 "girl" push-ups. And then onto bicycle crunches. Now she's on my stomach and I'm hitting her in the back with my knees with each one, she says, "Mommy, no hittin' that's no nice!"

"Then go sit with Emma and you won't get hit!"

Of course that isn't part of her plan. We begin some sort of butt lifting thing and now I'm bouncing her off my stomach and she decides it would be a way better ride if she just jumped up and down! I think she knocked the wind out of me a few times!

Finally we're done and, I again, place Elise back in her spot by her sister whom is still being really good! We begin our routine and I thought I'd hear Elise protest and tell Niki to turn it down, as she does to me on a regular basis. But she didn't, apparently we were in the right environment for loud music, and my living room is not. She watches us for the first run through, and then after that it was a free for all. She was running from one end of the studio to the other, looking at herself in the mirror, just about got taken out by one of the dancers, all while screaming and laughing her little head off. I finally put the not- so- nice mommy voice on and get her to sit. She's none to impressed but does manage to sit for a few more minutes, and then the whining starts, "Are you done yet Mommy?"

"5 more minutes Elise, just 5 more minutes."

Emma asks me if I'm going to get a sticker when I'm done, (she gets one for tap and ballet) I said,

"No Mommy doesn't get a sticker."

Elise was having no part of that, and starts yelling at Niki, "My Mommy get a ticker! That no nice!" Thank goodness she couldn't hear her over the music, I tell her it's okay, I don't want one. Finally class has come to an end, it was so stressful, I should've just stayed home!

On our way out to the truck Emma says, "Wow Mommy, you're really good!"

I laugh, "Thanks Emma."

"I really liked it when you did like that and then like this," as she makes the gestures of the moves as best she can as I'm running with them to get the h-e -double hockey sticks out of there.

Again, I laugh, and thank her. She says, "Mommy, I think I'm proud of you like you do to me!"

And then, I smile....and the tears well up.....and I stop the mad rush to the truck.....give her a great big hug...."Thank-you Baby."

The anxiety of the recital is still fresh on my mind, but as long as Emma is there watching and proud of her Mom I know I can get through it. All the stomach cramps and feelings of nausea, dry mouth and sweats will be worth it in the end. I'll take her being proud of me while I can because not too far into the future, her pride may turn to embarrassment during those hormonal years. And "if" or "when" it does, I'll remember the day she said she was proud and hope that she does too.

Saturday, April 24, 2010

Extreme Sports - Mom Style

Just when I THOUGHT life would coast for just a minute, Elise decided to step things up and get rid of her diaper! I tried a couple of months ago and she reminded me who was in control, and that folks, was NOT me. When asked by Emma's dance teacher week after week if Elise was a "Big Girl" yet, she always answered, "NO!" Seemingly annoyed more and more by the question, my niece decided that she would answer for Elise one day and said, "Nope, not today, maybe on Wednesday."

Many Wednesdays came and went until last Wednesday. Elise said, "Mommy, I want panties!" I didn't think about the "prediction" at first, and when I realized what day it was, I kind of got a shiver up my spine, that's weird.....I had to share it with the dance teacher, and her response was to remind her to ask Julie for some lotto numbers! (NO DOUBT!)

We have had to venture out of the house a few times,( as much as I have wanted to stop the world on its axis until we have this all figured out, Emma must dance and we must eat) so on those occasions I've considered this Extreme Sports -Mom Style!

Like any sporting enthusiast, I have all the right equipment for these "outings", the potty, turning the back of my SUV into a personal oasis, for my "Big Girl" in training. A fold up potty seat, for the public washrooms so we don't lose her in the BIG toilets, and of course 62 changes of clothes for those just- in- case moments. She thinks it's pretty funny to go "pee" in the back of the truck as do passersby as they do a double take, just to make sure that they really are seeing what they are seeing. A couple of moms at ballet commented on my own port-a-potty system, but hey whatever works right! The pee MUST make it to the potty! And while "going" in the Costco washroom we made a few ladies laugh at the potty party we had after Elise made a deposit! I'm sure it was strange to hear clapping and cheering coming from the stall over, believe me it's weird to do it, but again, whatever works! Thank goodness my mother- in- law was there, as she explained what the big deal was!

And so for the last 4 days, my life has revolved around my almost three- year- old and the potty, and my latest blog entry is reduced to this.....I apologize!

I don't know how many times I have asked her, "Do you have to pee? Do you need to use the potty? Are you wet?" "How about now,..... now,........ now Elise,........ how about now?"

I am annoying myself let alone her, and most recently she answered, "NOOOO Mommy! Jeepers!"

Or my personal favourite so far, "Elise, going to the potty is a "poopy" job, but someone has to do it."

"Then YOU do it Mommy!" said after day two when I thought she had given up, but she didn't, she has persevered, each day drier than the last.

My quest right now is to convince her that poop goes in the same place, and not her pants. By day 4 this is still proving to be a problem, bribes of chocolate, a new toy, money, a vacation in the Bahamas, a day at the spa, are just not working. I know she'll finally let go and do it, in the mean time I've come up with some rules:

1) Elise is in control

2)I am NOT in control

3)When in doubt refer to rules number 1 and 2.

I must go and see if a potty break is in order! Until next time, my friends, wish us luck that we finally get our "poop in a group" and that my next entries are a little more profound than potty adventures!

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Public Washroom Adventures

Kids are great aren't they? Who knew that when you had them, it would be a very long time until you were able to use the bathroom by yourself, or just how much fun you would have while using public facilities! Oh the adventures we've had over the years and oh how many more are to come!

Going to the public bathroom when your kids learn to talk is a phenomenon all of its own. The sights sounds and smells take on a whole new meaning in their little minds. Am I right? We try to quickly go in do our business and be on our merry way, but with my kids that hasn't happened just yet.

Before grocery shopping I had to go really bad, and was running through the parking lot to get to the bathroom, holding Elise in a football hold and dragging Emma by the hand almost flying her like a kite! As I am emptying my bladder Emma has to make her own color commentary, "Wow Mommy, you just keep peeing and peeing! Too much coffee again?"

I hear a snicker from the stall beside me, and I answer, "Yup, I guess so!"

It was Emma's turn and she comments on her own success, "I peed just as long as you this time Mommy! Maybe I'll even poop and I'll be the winner!"

More snickers from outside the stall, "Emma, going to the bathroom isn't really a competition there are no prizes for doing your business."

"Yes there is, you give Elise a chocolate every time she goes!"

(Touché.) "She's just learning and that's what I did with you, the party is over once you figure it out."

"Hmmmm....well I think it should be a party every time!"

"There isn't enough chocolate in the world to satisfy that dream Emma."


There have been many a comment on how much it stinks sometimes, and Elise voiced her opinion on the matter not too long ago. While waiting for Emma we hear "noises" from another stall, and even as an adult I still laugh at that, but manage to keep it to a minimum, until my baby said,


 ( Her famous tag line for when she does the ever so polite art of butt noises.) I do my very best to NOT let the girls see my reaction as it will start an uproar on all of our parts. Got myself under control, and then Elise looks under the door and yells,

 "Oh! Hers poopin' mommy! She's got a stinky butt, stinky butt stinky butt!"

I grab her arm and pull her from under the stall, apologize to the woman, and quickly make our escape so that I can just unleash the laughter and snorts to go along with it!

"But Mommy! We didn't wash our hands!"

"It's okay, I have hand sanitizer in my purse, let's go!"

I look forward to the days when going to the bathroom is just that, going to the bathroom , but the immature side of me loves that we, as a family, can make memories everywhere we "go"! So let's hear your funny public washroom displays, I KNOW you have them!

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Moments of Pride

Three events, although separate, had the same outcome....

For me, writing is fun and a hobby. For years I was just putting my stories in an email and sending them off to family and friends. I didn't think much of my stories, just used them as ways to keep in touch. I have been told by many people that I need to write and share it with the world. I didn't really pay much attention to the praise, as the compliments came from my family and friends, and thought, well they have to be nice me! I have a very bad trait of not believing in myself, one that I do my very best NOT to pass onto my girls. I constantly tell them to "Believe in Yourself"! (So much that I painted it on Emma's wall!) And so I tell myself the same thing and do my best to listen! I am currently working on the "new" me through many different ways and I know that I must lead and guide my girls by example.

My friend Lindsay, helped me out just a month ago and gave my name to the publisher of the online magazine called , she had a look at my blog and asked me to submit. I was pretty shocked, ecstatic, scared and sick to my stomach all at the at time. Together we came up with my submission and voila! my story is out there for the world to see. A very proud moment for me, as I was recognised as Catharine, not just Emma and Elise's mom! A moment when I Believed in Myself.

Which leads me to my oldest daughter Emma. She is a very shy and sensitive soul. She takes much caution in everything that she does, making sure that she does things right the first time in order to please. When things go wrong or she gets hurt in some of those processes she tends to give up for the time being and address the matters at another time. Through the years I found this to be frustrating , and was worried about her future in this great big world. (People tend to get eaten up when they've shown so much vulnerability, especially girls.) She has inspired me on many occasions with her will and determination, and taught me to" relax", she'll figure things out on her own time.

We've been asking her if she is ready for her training wheels to come off since last summer and the answer was always no. She decided that last Sunday was the time to do it. You could see the excitement and fear in her eyes, as her dad held her up and gave her instructions. My cousin and I were cheering her on, snapping pictures, and giving her encouragement. She tried and tried, scared of falling, but still wanted to figure it out. After about an hour, she walked away from it, again, I was disappointed that she was "giving up" but knew that she would tackle it again later. And she did, this time it was me holding her up and giving her the" pep" talk. It wasn't long and she was on her way, riding and balancing and trusting herself that she could do it. She was so excited as she rode, screaming and giggling, "Look Mommy! I'm really doing it!!!! I did what you said and believed in myself!" Right there I realized that I won't have to worry about her future, she has it figured out at the ripe old age of five. I pray she continues on with her will and determination and that she will remember how she felt the day she rode her bike without training wheels, for it was a day that she proved to herself, and the world, that she can do anything.

And finally, my cousin had her own milestone, that we celebrated. She is an amazing young woman in her 20's, full of love for life and all that it brings, and you just can't help but smile when you are around her. She holds a special place in my heart, a soft spot really. Emma is her biggest fan too, her patience with my kids was in short, remarkable! We made plans for her to come here and visit for the weekend, she recently suffered a broken heart and, I wanted her to have fun and forget the stupid boy that, for a short time, made her doubt herself and her ability to be loved.

We had a fun filled jam packed weekend and she made a decision to go on a date with a new fellow, but wasn't sure she was going to go through with it. I encouraged her to go for it, and with a new hairdo, a nervous stomach and a rockin' outfit she was off. (She took life by the horns and let it ride!) The woman I know and love is back to believing in herself and knowing that love is out there, and that she will find it. Who knows who her "Mr. Right" is, but when she finds him he better sit down, hold on, and be thankful to the ones before him that let her get away. Life with her will be exciting, non-stop, and full of a love that will inspire those that we secretly envy.

We three women, though at different stages in our life held a common ground. One full of pride, and confidence and moments that we all shared together. I had my "15 minutes of fame", Emma learned to ride her bike and my cousin learned to get back on hers. Moments where we let go and believed that we could accomplish the specific goals that we had set before us. We didn't cure cancer but in our own ways we gained a little more confidence, and coming from a woman that has just learned how to gain confidence instead of fat, it was a week of momentous strides!

Thursday, April 15, 2010

3 Easy Steps My A**!!!!!

Due to the recent "shut-down" of my link to this blog on Facebook, I am now regretting not going through with post secondary education! I've been able to coast through life without having a degree or student loans to pay off, but it seems as though a simple copy and paste system is too much for my brain to handle.

Facebook decided that since people were sharing my link on their own pages( thank-you for that!) and people were clicking it, they need a piece of the action too.( Granted it's a free site so why not. )

I, at first thought they were censoring me,( which, I still think they sort of are,) but no, we need to link hand in hand and "share" so everything will be fine. I follow the directions on the "Wizard" portion of "connect with facebook" . In 3 Easy Steps I'll be on my way!  Should have been easy enough, I gave birth to two kids, this will be a walk in the "copy & paste" park!

Well either I'm a stupid "Wizard" or Facebook is because it won't let me get past step two.

"click to download file" (click!)

"open file?" (yes!)

A blank screen pops up, and I wait, waiting, wait, extra boxes, no bars to look at just a page that is blank. Hmmmm..... okay let's start over.

"click to download file" (click..)

"open file?" (yes..)

Same blank screen, and more waiting, waiting, extra boxes, no bars to look at just a page that is blank. HHMMMMM......I MUST be missing something, try again.

"click to download file" (CLICK.....Mother Trucker CLICK!)

"open file?" (YYYYEEEESSSSSSSSS...........!!!!)

Like I'm at the horse track waiting for my horse to win I sit in anticipation, talking to the screen,

"Come on, come on, come on, go, go, go!"


Same blank screen, nothing to look at, but a blank flippin' screen!! AAARRRRGGGGGGGHHHHHH!

I click another button, "upload later" and continue through more EASY steps of copy this and paste that on your site....okay simple enough. I navigate through both sites copy and paste, copy and paste, copy and paste......SAVE.....

"File saved". (that's right, take that!)

Would you like to test?

Why yes, yes I would......(click!)

To my amazement, I see the ever-loving Facebook icon on my blog! I did it!

Click on the "share" button like a good girl, because life and apparently Facebook, are all about sharing!

Waiting, waiting, cheering that my horse crosses the finish line this time.....

"website content has been reported abusive by Facebook users" okay!"

NNNNNNNOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!!!! It's not OKAY! I will not click OKAY!

Now that I am completely frustrated, I shut it down and walk away, I'll look at it again later,( gave myself a time-out.) Later came, and later went, same outcome, more frustration. And so my friends we cannot play nice and "share" on Facebook. At this point it is NOT good for my mental health and I choose to stay in my corner before I throw an all out tantrum on the floor! Or I may break into the vodka right now, but Corey won't be home until after the children are in bed, and I have to drive to hip hop. (Although the vodka may enhance my hip hop moves......) no, no, I just will not try and "share"!

I will "blog on" and let you know when there is a new entry, so you can read on. Thanks for all your support and for enjoying a "look" through the window to my life, and finding amusement because you can "relate" to my everyday shenanigans!

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Bringing Sexy Back

For my husband's birthday back in October I decided that I would be his present to unwrap. I've been working out religiously with Jillian and it was time that he reap the rewards of my new found physique!
(oh and if you are reading this and you gave birth to me or you gave birth to my husband, please proceed to the blog entry "A New Religious Experience", and remember that we did go to church recently!)
.....Okay so, my lingerie wardrobe consists of 100% cotton night shirts with spaghetti straps trimmed with lace, the color of pink and Disney prints on the front, and to really get racy some have a slit up the side! ( I know, so fantastically hot right?)
I figured that maybe it's time to spice things up a bit and add some red to my repertoire. I recruit my shopping partner in crime and off we go with the kids to the Big City to find my husband a present!
Just by habit I go straight for the cotton nightgowns, (there were new colors and prints! Red with white polka dots!) YES!
My girlfriend, politely pulls me in the direction of the not -so- mom side of the store.....oh....(I thought this part was only for women that haven't pushed a 7 or 8 pound human being out of their "hoo ha"!)
I was quickly assured that it is okay, this is what he will want to see me in! Putting all of my trust in her, we pick out a little something, and another and another. - Apparently all these parts go together to make one outfit!
I proceed to the dressing room, look at all the pieces and put it together like a puzzle. The top is a black bustier and the bottom piece is something called a garter belt.


I force myself into the bustier, and slip on the belt. Standing back looking at myself in the mirror, I ask through the door,

"Ummm, am I supposed to look like a stuffed sausage in this?"

"Let me see, I'm sure it's not that bad."

"Okay, here goes...."

"Right. Well let me just go see if they have the next size up, your boobs should not look like one."

Off she goes and finds the size, I put that one on and it looked a little better, certainly not a free flowing night gown, but not bad! I take it off and am ready to buy it, trying to hurry before I lose my nerve completely. But we aren't done yet, we need to add stockings to the ensemble! 10 minutes later I think I have what I need and finish the sale.

This is going to be the best $ 78 he has ever spent for his birthday!!!

We make it home and I am so excited to surprise him with the unexpected, feeling really good about myself, that's right, two kids and the stretch marks to prove it, I'll BLOW his MIND!

Being coached on how to put everything together I decided that I'll have to do a practice run, before the big reveal. I set the kids up with coloring and lock myself in my room. I carefully lay the pieces out on the bed, admiring my purchase, and then start to sweat. What was I thinking, I can't pull this off, (okay stop, yes you can!)

I put the stockings on first, and as I'm pulling them up my legs, I make a mental note to shave, pretty sure the hair is not supposed to poke through the black silk. Right.

Next comes the belt, oh boy, which way is it supposed to go....oh that's right the clasps go downwards. Check!

Now to attach the stockings to the clasps, no problem. After struggling with the rubber claps for about 10 minutes I remember that I was told to attach the stockings first and then put them on as one. So off go the stockings and belt and I start over.

Finally, I got them together, (not without a few curse words), I am suddenly exhausted, and try to muster up the energy for the bustier. I put it on backwards so that I can do up the bazillion clasps and hope for the best as I try and turn it around to the correct position. Finally it's all done up, my fingers hurt and I am really sweating now, thinking that someone should put out a DVD for housewives that don't quite know the art of building a lingerie outfit, I'm sure it would be a best seller, or maybe I am the only one that has no clue!

Turning the piece around proved to be a show in itself. Because of all the sweat it was stuck at the sides of me, so that means the cups were under my arm on one side and the clasps were digging in on the other, my boobs had stretched and pulled to the side with the fabric, I look in the mirror and think - yup, I'm gonna blow his mind for sure! I sat down on the bed to take a rest for a bit and finally tug one more time and finally got it into position. Placed the "girls" in the correct cups gave one more hoist up and admired the final outcome.

 Huh......all that work for this?

Okay, I'm going need something else, something else, something else. Oh I know, boots! I can wear my shiny black knee high boots....yeeeaaahhhh baby!

I rummage through my closet and pull out the boots, sit, or try to sit on the bed to slip them on. All done up I stood up and took a step, tripped on the bag the lingerie came in and fell into the closet.

CRASH! Ouch, that's gonna leave a mark!

The kids hear the commotion and run to the door, "Mom! Are you okay, what are you doing?"

"I'm fine, something fell, I'm just wrapping your dad's present."

"Oh, can we see it?"

"NO! I'm almost done, go finish coloring!"

I pull myself up and laugh, yup ,I'm really gonna blow his mind!

Now that I'm all put together I figure I'll try out some "bedroom eye" looks in the mirror. After trying my best looks for a while, again wonder if there is a DVD for housewives on the art of seduction, because clearly I need help! I call my girlfriend for moral support as I am ready to just throw in the towel and find my best cotton nightgown and be done with it. She brings me back to that place of confidence and I feel like I can actually do it without him laughing at me too.

My conscious effort to "Bring Sexy Back" was appreciated and every now and then I look at the outfit and giggle -reminding myself that sexy is a state of mind, and I can blow his mind in a cotton nightgown, a binding uncomfortable number or in a pink fuzzy housecoat, he loves Me not what I'm wearing!