Tuesday, 12 November 2013

My Cirque du Soleil Audition

I've always enjoyed performing - just ask my poor relatives who suffered every Christmas as my sister and I put on an impromptu pageant complete with costumes and off key notes.

Over the years I tried my hand at musical theatre, jazz dancing, and of course, the performance of my life so far - pretending to be a completely competent mother of four.

Today, I decided to change things up a bit and try to perfect my acrobatic routine. This brilliant idea came to me as I took the garbage out this afternoon. What happened is this - last weekend I took a bag of garbage out and tossed it into the container. Unfortunately it was a rim shot, and tipped the can backwards so it was laying on the floor. I had my fingers crossed that someone else (aka Mike) might notice and set it back up for me. No dice.
Note the Blue Garbage Can - this is the one that was laying
 on the floor causing all the problems.
Also note the landing with the box of booze on it - this is approx. 2 feet off the floor.

Fast forward to a couple of hours ago when I got the brilliant idea to try and right the can by reaching over and snagging it with the handle of E's scooter. After all, it was only about a 5 foot reach - what could go wrong?

Turns out it was one of those times where I wished there was a hidden camera in the garage because I'm certain I would have been a contender for the big one on America's Funniest Videos.

As I balanced myself with my hand on the wall and my feet planted behind the box of booze sitting on the step, I reached forward with the scooter and managed to hook it onto the black handle of the can. What happened next is something of a blur; however when I came to I found my left arm and shoulder firmly wedged in the garbage can, my face smushed into a used furnace filter, and my right arm cradling an empty pizza box. Nestled between my thighs was an empty Corona. Truthfully, it kind of reminded me of college - minus the raging headache and fuzzy tongue courtesy of a really good night.

Suffice it to say, clearly I am not as flexible (or as smart for that matter) as I used to be. And that call from Cirque? Probably not gonna happen.

Monday, 11 November 2013

The Poppy

Sometimes I wonder if the conversations I have with the kids actually sink in.

I'm not talking about the standard "don't fart on your sisters head", "5 is an unacceptable time to get up", or even "if your mittens are dripping water everywhere, then yes - they are indeed WET". Those scripts are already on rewind and repeat and seem to have little impact.

No, I'm referring to the important conversations. Things like the significance of wearing the poppy, Remembrance Day, and honouring the contribution made by our current and past armed forces to ensure we have the rights/freedoms we often take for granted.  Admittedly, this is a concept that is difficult for a 6 year old to process.

Image from www.warmuseum.ca

The other day my children were fortunate to participate in a Remembrance Day ceremony at their school. When they returned home that evening, all were very excited to tell me about the ceremony - and especially proud of the poppies they had pinned to their jackets. Except B. His coat was missing his poppy.

"B - what happened to your poppy? Did it fall off on the way home?" I asked.

"No. I buried it in the snow!" he stated excitedly. He then ran off to play.

At first I was mortified - why on earth would my child bury a symbol of Remembrance in the snow, and I secretly hoped he did this in our yard and not at the school.

At bedtime that evening, as I rubbed his back, I asked "Why would you bury your poppy, B?"

"So we could have poppies in the spring of course. Why should we only remember when snow is on the ground?" he replied, looking at me as if I was daft.

Perhaps I'm doing something right after all.

If you are interested in hearing the stories of our veterans, I encourage you to check out Veterans Voices of Canada  . This is an amazing project dedicated to ensuring our veterans can share their stories with generations to come. We must never forget.

Friday, 8 November 2013

DST - The Aftermath

After almost a week straight of 5 a.m. wake up calls, I have officially decided Daylight Savings Time can go to a place a heck of a lot warmer than it is here.

My kids have always been early risers - and are pretty consistent in their 6 a.m. 'rise and fight' routine regardless of the time they went to bed the night before. So when DST hits, we usually have a couple days before their internal clocks get adjusted.

Now we are 7 days in, and I have almost resigned myself to the fact that 5 is the new 6. Also, there is not enough coffee in the world to get me through this.
Or by screaming children … 

This morning, in sheer desperation, I wrote the following message on the stove:

Clearly I am in a stupor, otherwise I would have scribed this on something that other people in the house actually look at … but no, I chose the stove. I may as well have scribbled it in the leftover lint that dusts the top of the dryer … no one else looks at it either.

Sigh. I'm gonna grab me a Gin and have me a pity party today. Anyone want to take my kids for a sleepover?

Thursday, 7 November 2013

6 Year Olds CANNOT Be Trusted

There's nothing quite as humbling as becoming a victim of unexpected exposure.

A couple of weeks ago we dropped E off at choir, then headed back outside to enjoy some fresh air and activity until she was done.

About 20 minutes later, B decided he needed to use the bathroom "Really, REALLY BAD", so I took him back inside the church to use the 'facilities'.

Because the men's room was occupied, and he was squirming more than Rob Ford* at a press conference, I suggested he use the ladies room. After dragging him by the ear much convincing, he finally relented and came inside the washroom with me. While there, I decided that I could probably take advantage of the situation rather than having to return 5 minutes later.

As soon as he was done, I begged told B to wait patiently by the sink with his back toward me and proceeded to 'settle' myself. No sooner had I made seat contact, he stomped over to the door, grabbed the handle and flung it open, then ran into the main foyer leaving me literally with my pants down.

At which point I was grateful for three things:

Number 1
The woman seated directly across the hall from the washroom kindly averted her eyes and saved her laughter for later.

Number 2
All the squats I've been doing over the past two years have obviously paid off. I was able to waddle cover the 7 feet from the toilet to the door whilst my pants were at my knees and my lily white arse swung wildly to and fro in what I'm certain could be deemed as record time.

Image Credit: Mike Talma (you can see my pathetic attempt I erased before asking him for help)
Good thing I was wearing my fancy red boots and skinny jeans that day.
Also - what the heck is with my arms?!?
Number 3
I managed to hold in my sneeze until AFTER I scooted back to the toilet and sat down (those of you who have children will understand what I mean)

The moral of this story?

My red boots look hot and might help me turn into Wonder Woman when faced with a challenge. That, and 6 year old boys suck.

*If for some reason you live under a rock and don't know who Rob Ford is, I suggest you google him.

Monday, 7 October 2013

Shop Local

Shop Local.

It's a phrase and sentiment I hear often. Show your support for our small, community businesses. Spend your money in shops and stores that are owned and operated by members of our community, who in turn, support local groups through donations, sponsorships, and gifts in kind.

Yes, I look on the back of programs and patronize businesses that have sponsored events I happen to attend. I will go to the local coffee shop when meeting friends, or purchase my jeans from the local clothing store. I will go back to the local hardware/home&garden store to purchase those items I need to maintain my home/lawn. Whenever possible, I utilize a local floral designer for those occasions where a bouquet or arrangement is needed. I buy my groceries at the local grocery store - even though I probably could get many of these items at a reduced cost from somewhere else. If they don't have something I am looking for, I will make the drive to another store that is well known for their amazing contributions to our community - even though it is part of a chain, it is still 'locally owned and operated'.

The thing is, these businesses don't receive my support because they are 'local'. They receive my support because from the moment I walk in the door, I feel like I am welcome there. That I am important. That they are going to go the extra mile to make sure I walk out that door happy - even if they are unable to provide what I am looking for. For the most part, I encounter this in most local, and indeed many other businesses I enter - and it keeps me coming back repeatedly.

Which is why it burns my a$$ I am always taken by surprise when I walk into a shop and suddenly become invisible. I might get the obligatory "hello, how are you today?", but from there on in there is zero conversation. It is an interesting experience to spend several minutes looking at items, sometimes picking them up and examining them, even holding an item of clothing in front of myself to see what it might look like ... aaaaaannnnndddd .... nothing. I once spent a full twenty five minutes in a small shop, touching things, wandering around, even looking at items on the counter - only to observe the clerk spend the entire time on her cell phone. I didn't even get a 'Thanks for coming in' when I said goodbye and thank you on my way out.

I have watched two employees dress mannequins and wrap scarves on hangers while I wander around the store. And I wonder, is my business really that important? I understand that my lack of designer duds perhaps gives the impression that I can't afford to shop in that particular establishment; however I can assure you that is simply not the case. I would have gladly opened my wallet had I simply been asked, "is there anything we can help you with?".

Perhaps I expect too much. Maybe I catch people on 'off' days, or they are simply preoccupied and fail to notice the customer in the store. I get it - things happen. So I'll give it a second chance. Sometimes my experience is much better, sometimes it isn't. And I won't go back.

One thing is certain, these experiences make me appreciate those businesses that go the extra mile even more. The sales clerks that initiate conversation the moment I walk in the door. The grocery store employee that sees me looking at a wall of produce and takes the time to ask if they can help me find something in particular. The employee who goes and looks in the back, even though they are 99% certain they no longer have an item in stock.

If you are in Red Deer area, or even passing through - make sure you check out these great local businesses ...

Peavey Mart - Lacombe
Kavaccino's - Lacombe
Upper Level Clothing - Lacombe
Calyx Floral Design - Central Alberta & Area - based in Blackfalds
Blackfalds Family Foods - Blackfalds
After the Grind - Blackfalds
Great Strides - Red Deer
SOBEYS South - Red Deer

There are of course, many, many more - but I can honestly say I have never gotten anything but amazing service in each and every one of these businesses. And I sincerely appreciate that.

What are your thoughts? Are my expectations too high? How do you decide which businesses to patronize and which to skip? Where have you had amazing customer service?

Thursday, 3 October 2013

(cue): Doorbell

Is there a secret code that says when the kids are behaving at their worst some random person suddenly shows up on your doorstep?

This seems to happen to me a lot - which is not to say that my kids behave terribly a good majority of the time, it's just they seem to know when an unexpected audience is waiting in the wings.

Tonight was no exception.

We have been implementing a bedtime routine for the past month, and so far, most of our evening distress has thankfully subsided. It works out great for both the kids and me.

For whatever reason, the boys were on a tear tonight and not listening whatsoever. Normally they would get a long back scratch and snuggle before bed; however I informed them that because of their behaviour, they would only be getting a hug, kiss, and tuck in. Of course, this resulted in much screaming, wailing, and sounds similar to what you would make if one of your limbs was being ripped off.

(cue): Doorbell

I told the boys to stay in bed and went downstairs.

The woman was moving away quickly from the door. She seemed somewhat surprised when I opened the door and said hello. Turns out it was a candidate for the upcoming election.

To her credit, she said she didn't think anyone was home (which is the nice way of saying it sounds like you are in the process of dismembering someone but there is no blood on your shirt so I'm confused).

We talked for a few minutes, and she went on her way.

When I returned upstairs, I noticed B with his face smushed into the window and arms spread wide as if to say "save me".

I think it is safe to say that after hearing the sounds of torture and seeing the almost naked boy trapped upstairs, she will either not be returning for a follow up visit or will be calling Children's Services.


Credit: Snark Ecards

Tuesday, 24 September 2013

Uhhhhhhh .... What?!?



(Mom, this means you ...)

Tempted anyways, aren't you?

Can't say you haven't been warned ...

For the rest of you sicko's like me, carry on ...

I'm pulling out of my 'blogging funk' by sharing a picture of what I happened to see when I looked in the mirror tonight ...

Thankfully, now I am not the only one with that image burned into my mind for eternity.

That is all.

Wednesday, 10 July 2013

I'm Out!

Source unknown - if this is your image
please let me know so I can credit you.

It's Wednesday. Hump day. All downhill from here, right?

Except it's not. I haven't even touched the 'eighth wonder of the world' laundry pile, the kitchen looks like a tornado hit, and if I want to find out where the kids are, all I have to do is follow the trail of fruit snacks, taco chip shards, freezie wrappers and melted pop rocks which have taken up residence on my floor.

It's been a stressful week - heck, if I'm honest, it's been a stressful month - so instead of busting my butt cleaning house and taking care of s&^! like I usually do, I'm having a cocktail - or two - instead.

Except here's the thing. When I don't take care of s&^!, I get exhausted just looking at all the s&^! I'm not taking care of. I feel overwhelmed. I feel crabby. But mostly, I feel like I am failing to provide an amazing environment for my family.

My son provided me with a better perspective this afternoon though. As we were walking through the parking garage on our way out of the hospital, he suddenly stopped. I watched as he stood there with his eyes closed, shoulders rising as he slowly inhaled the scent of stale air, exhaust fumes, and dirt. Then he smiled, looked in my eyes, and said with delight ...

"It smells AWESOME in here ... why can't our house smell like this, Mom?!" His brother and sister were in full agreement.

I guess I can live with a little mess, piles of stinky laundry, and a crunchy floor for a little while longer. It's not like it's concerning my family in the least. In the meantime, I'm sending the kids to live in the garage. It smells better in there.

Bottoms up!

Tuesday, 25 June 2013

In the Dark

I lie awake

listening to the tap drip
testing my faith.

The sound gives voice to my worry
my fears

my regrets
my 'what if's?'.

Consuming me.
Devouring me.

I yearn for light
for the responsibilities of the day

that allow my soul some refuge
distracting me

from the questions I don't want to answer
the realities I don't want to face.

The future that may exist.
Or may not.

The tap won't be broken forever ...
it can be fixed ... right?





I taste the salt of my tears ...
it's not just the tap leaking tonight.

Each of us weeping

in the dark.

I've GOT to get that damn tap fixed.

I am submitting this post to the Yeah Write Weekly writing challenge - head on over there to check out some amazing posts by some fantastic writers :)

Tuesday, 11 June 2013

Where Oh Where Can Your Little Brains Be?


For the past few weeks I have been complaining that I simply don't understand what has happened to my children. It's like they have lost their ever loving minds!

We are in the final few weeks of school, and they have completely forgotten the morning routine - you know, that super difficult one that involves eating, brushing your teeth, and getting dressed. I understand it may be perceived as somewhat complicated; however to be fair, we've been doing this for 10 months now and I haven't 'changed it up' just for fun. So why do I have to repeat each step at least a million three times and endure the cacophony of sobbing and squeals of "I don't know what to do next?!?" each and every morning?

Then, when they return from school, it starts again. They feign exhibit complete surprise when I point out the mudroom, their coat hooks, and shoe baskets. Somewhere in the school time vortex, an entire portion of our house simply disappears from their brains! Their eyes fill with blank stares wonder as I describe how to hang up their coats and - gasp - put away their shoes. Every single day.

Next comes the inevitable merry go round musical of "I'm hungry", "Dinner will be served in 20 minutes", "I don't like that", "I'm starving", "Why can't I just eat now?", "You're sooooo mean", and so on and so forth. It's no wonder I'm halfway through a bottle of Gin by the time dinner gets on the table!

And don't get me started on outside time. We have some simple rules in our house with respect to the outdoors. You wear a helmet and shoes (and preferably clothes as well) when you ride a bike or scooter. Shovels are for killing gophers, not digging up the grass. Put your things away when you are finished with them lest they be run over by a car or lawnmower. Easy peasy.

Nope. Not at my house.

This afternoon while I was visiting with a neighbor who had stopped by, B proceeded to dig several holes in the backyard - presumably the ones already immaculately dug by the gophers were not sufficient. I was finally able to wrestle the shovel away, but not before a humiliating demonstration of how I am no match for a six year old strength wise.

Then, later this evening, we had a guy show up to help us locate an electrical line we had buried several years ago. The kids went nuts. E was riding around the driveway at top speed on her scooter, apparently oblivious to my nagging reminders to "put a helmet on". The boys each grabbed shovels and practically wrapped themselves around the poor guys legs as they eagerly watched him locate the line. B got bored and started digging holes in the grass again. I begged him to stop in between yelling at E to put a helmet on or her scooter was going to the dump. Then Z started crying because I wouldn't let him start digging up the flowerbed to expose the now located line, exclaiming "You never let me do ANYTHING!!!!"

I began to try and herd the kids into the house to get ready for bed. By now the boys were trying to fight each other with shovels, and E was sobbing on the front step because she had finally found her helmet. I begged. I pleaded. And in a moment of sheer exasperation, exclaimed "For the love of God, can you please just turn your brains on for 1 minute?!?"

B threw down his shovel, stamped his feet, and shouted "We.Don't.HAVE.Any.Brains!"

Well now, I guess my suspicions have been confirmed.

Case closed.

Now, head on over to the Yeah Write moonshine grid for some other great reading this weekend :)

Wednesday, 29 May 2013

Rainy Day Treats

It's raining ... again.

I could have chosen to crawl back into bed this morning, and laze the day away watching new episodes of "Arrested Development", but B & E are at home and would probably rat me out to the teacher tomorrow, so I decided to catch up on some baking instead.

Baking doesn't happen very often in our house - usually only at Christmas. B & E were thrilled and had a great time adding ingredients, stirring, and whining about who got to do what. Good times.

When we finally finished, they went upstairs to wreck the place to play on the computer. Soon, they had launched into a full scale Christmas Carol Sing a Long, and despite my desperate pleas to cease and desist, they only got louder and more persistent.

image from posterrevolution.com

So now it is 3 o'clock in the afternoon, and my counter is full of muffins, cookies, and other wonderfully sinful things to eat. I can feel my a$$ growing just looking at all of it.

The kids are still upstairs, belting out Jingle Bells for the thousandth time - while I'm writing my blog and throwing back shots as I look at the clock and wonder how much longer until bedtime. Well that's not entirely true - there's still a good chance the rain will stop and I'll have to take the kids to soccer, so the only shots I'm throwing back are imaginary ones - but damn they are good!

Sigh. I love rainy days.

Tuesday, 28 May 2013

Anatomy 101

Last night it became clear I am failing at teaching the more subtle aspects of anatomy. Don't get me wrong - they know their major body parts and can quickly point out their weenis' (in between giggles of course) when asked. I'm talking about those not often talked about parts of us - like our knuckles, eyebrows, cuticles and the like . . .
Source unknown
(Just in case you thought a weenis was something else)

My oldest son wants to be like his Dad, so he only wears his ginch to bed at night. This drives my younger daughter crazy.  Every time he struts into the room wearing nothing other than his tighty whitey's she reminds him to "put some clothes on" in a voice remarkably similar to Howard's Mom on The Big Bang Theory.

Last night, she had had enough.

"Z, I can see your belly button AND your boobs! Put your robe on!" she hollered.

"I don't have boobs" Z stated smugly as he stuck out his tongue, "I have pimples."

"Z, those are actually called nipples" I gently reminded him.

"DUUUUHHHHH .... " my daughter teased "cause THESE are your pimples" she said with a note of triumph in her voice while pointing to the pupil of her eye.

We spent some more time talking about the parts of the eye, including the pupil.

However, following my very graphic and disgusting description of what a pimple actually is, they both swore they never wanted to be teenagers - ever.  Suits me just fine. I'd rather skip that too.

(Mental Note: start stockpiling gin ....)

Monday, 27 May 2013

It's The Little Things

I am a very happy girl tonight.

No, it's not just because I successfully pulled off the switcheroo of the century by replacing the Fruit Loops with Fruity Loops and getting my kids to actually eat them.

It's not even because I stumped them during the argument over whether or not Pluto is actually a planet or a micro-planet. I maintain Pluto is a dog - apparently a very unpopular position indeed.

It isn't because it is once again raining - giving our earth the much needed moisture so my grass will grow and my trees will not require my hauling the hose around 4 acres to water them.

No, it's the little things.

Today, a cousin who I had lost touch with found and commented on my blog. I haven't spoken to him for probably 15 years, and although I had kind of kept up with how he was doing through my Mom who is in touch with his Dad, I wasn't even sure where he was living anymore.

So the fact that he made time in his busy life to find and reconnect with me totally made my day - and I am so looking forward to catching up.

This got me to thinking.

Life gets busy.

We get caught up in kids activities, household chores, work, school, our health ... the list goes on and on. Things start to fall by the wayside.

It might be that one (or 3!!) room in the house that we need to hide - the door closed so others can't see how we just toss things into it to sort through/deal with later because for whatever reason we just can't get our poop in a group.

It might be that time with friends is sacrificed so that we can attend soccer games or support our kids in whatever activity/hobby they enjoy.

It might be letting relationships with our family - particularly those we may not see very often - simply drift away ... our times together becoming a fond memory rather than a living, growing relationship.

Today I am thankful for my cousin. He has reminded me that even though things get busy, and we may have lost touch, we are still family - and it is never too late to pick up where we left off. It's never too late to change the course we are on, or who is walking the path with us. Yes indeed, I am thankful.

Well, for that, and Gin. I'm always thankful for Gin, but particularly so after that whole intense Pluto discussion. Definitely needed a drink after THAT one.

Image from memejelly.com
It's our last life, so let's live and be awesome!

Friday, 24 May 2013

Reality Check

As I registered my kids for summer camp last night, I was surprised and pleased to run into a former colleague. Naturally, one of her first questions was whether or not I was enjoying my time at home.

I chose to be honest.

"I'm not sure, even after two years, that I have this whole 'stay at home mom' thing down yet" I admitted.

It's hard for me to admit this. When my oldest daughter was growing up, I desperately wanted to be at home with her; however circumstances did not allow for this to happen. After the other children were born, there was still within me a strong need to work - to contribute financially to our family. However as our situation changed and life happened, the opportunity to remain at home with our kids arrived. My dream could finally be realized!

When I eventually made the decision to stay at home, I was excited to embark on what I anticipated my life would now be. I could have a nice, leisurely shower each morning without worrying about getting out the door to work. I could do educational activities with the kids. I could spend an hour each afternoon either reading a book or starting to write one. My house would be spotless and healthy meals would be prepared each day. Heck, there might even be meals pre-made in the freezer, to pop into the oven on those super hectic days. The yard would be mowed. Toys would be organized and put away when they were finished with. Laundry would be done and put away each week. The kids would be thrilled to spend time with me - we could play, do craft projects, and sing songs.

BOOM! Reality check!

My nice leisurely shower usually takes less than 3 minutes and only happens every few days because:

  • Lingering in the warm water is significantly more stressful when you can hear shrieks of terror (or glee) coming from the other side of the door.
  • It's hard to relax and enjoy yourself when three faces are pressed into the glass asking "why is there hair 'there'?", and "does it feel like the hair on your head Mom?", along with "Can I touch it?" and the obligatory whine "But why not???"

My educational activities with the kids include (but aren't limited to):
  • Exposure to curse words in other languages, some of which don't even exist yet (I'm a visionary).
  • Proficiency in counting backwards from 3.

My hour of afternoon reading or writing:

  • This is usually the time I spend frantically going through countless stacks of paper and other discarded items on the counter looking for the school consent form that was due yesterday or the bill that needed to be paid last week.
  • Is spent researching the most effective way to get rid of the urine smell caused by boys who can't aim.

My house is spotless and healthy meals are prepared daily. OK, let's be real.

Source unknown
  • There are definitely pre-made meals in the freezer. We are fully stocked with frozen pizza and microwaveable dinners I am happy to report. 
  • I 'make the rounds' to each toilet in the morning and regularly throughout the day to ensure that little presents are sent away before starting to smell. Usually Occasionally I forget to check the basement toilet. My apologies in advance if you need to go down there. 

The yard will be mowed regularly:
  • This does happen regularly . . . only because no one - and I mean NO ONE bugs Momma on the mower. WINNING!

Toys are organized and put away when they are finished with:
  • The toys are all organized according to 'where they land' and their relative position to being stepped on.
  • My house looks like the toy box went on a bender and subsequently spewed everywhere.

Laundry will be done and put away on a weekly basis.
  • We all have beautiful closets in our bedrooms. Some even have clothes in them.
  • We have re-purposed our pool table and games room for use as a walk in closet and dressing room. It's a little awkward when we have parties, but hey, they came to see us, not the state of our house, right?

The kids are thrilled to spend time with me doing fun things:

  • We play a lot of hide and seek. They hide because they are in trouble, I seek because I yearn for revenge.
  • I start counting down to bedtime around 9 a.m. most days.

Yup, I'm living the dream! It's not the dream I had anticipated, and it's a heck of a lot harder than I figured - but I am grateful nonetheless. Because let's face it, if things were perfect, I would never be able to appreciate the humor in things like this: 

P.S. - popcorn is a food group, right?

I'm stepping outside of my comfort zone and submitting this to the Yeah Write Moonshine Grid for the weekend. Click on the link below and head on over to read some amazing writing from some wonderful people :)  Happy Weekend Everyone!

Tuesday, 21 May 2013

My Favorite Things

In honor of my daughters 20th birthday, I decided to come up with a list of some of my most favorite moments over the past 20 years. Of course there are hundreds more, but because I'm getting old and usually my moments of remembrance occur when I get up for a pee in the middle of the night and vanish by morning, these are what you get . . .

20.       The way you sound like a Star Wars fighter machine when you sneeze.  Pew Pew Pew … (Clearly I’m not up on my Star Wars lingo – but I know you know what I mean)

19.       You have a killer ‘throwing arm’ – it impresses me every time I see you throw a baseball or football.

18.       The way you interact with little kids – you are enthusiastic and make them feel special.

17.       When you were three and Grandma was showing you the old chicken house, you looked inside, saw an old cow skull, and said  very seriously “Grandma, I think your chickens are extinct”.

16.       When driving through the mountains, you were in awe of all the “Hindu’s” (Hoodoos)
A Drumheller Hoodoo
15.       The picture you drew when you were in Kindergarten that showed me lying on the ground with a wine bottle in my hand and surrounded by empties that was captioned “My Mom likes to drink wine”.

14.       When you were 5 and we took you to Costco, and you laid in the cart and hollered “Help! Someone let me out of this cage!” the entire time we were there.

13.       Your childhood dream to be a ‘window washer’ just so you could hang off tall buildings like Spiderman.

12.       When you decided to participate in the High Jump at track and field but didn’t realize you couldn’t dive over the bar.

11.       When you sing, my heart soars. I miss hearing you every single day.

10.       When you were 6, you told me you figured you could only handle living with me until you were 12, at which point you were going to ‘make it on my own’.

9.         Trying to explain to you why you couldn’t keep 25 bumblee bee caterpillars in your closet corner – and the subsequent attempt to explain why they were ‘all shriveled up like that’.

8.         The day you tried for hours to ‘catch’ a gopher just so you could have a pet.

7.         The way your eyes light up when you are telling a story, or flashing a smile.

6.         During the last baseball game of the year (age 8), you belted out the “Star Spangled Banner” for the entire duration of the third inning. A proud Canadian indeed ;)

5.         Watching you jump off the moving ride on mower and sprinting across the yard because you saw a spider.

4.         That time you went to school and told everyone that we went to a party on the weekend, and I brought 'Cocaine'. We worked VERY hard at sounding out the word "Kokanee" from that moment forward. 

3.         The look on your face when you bit into a chocolate and discovered it was filled with Brandy.

2.         On your first day at your new daycare, you told all the teachers that you needed to behave or “my Mom will find someone to adopted me”.

1.         And my most favorite is when you wrap your arms around me and say “I love you Mom”.

I’ll love you forever,
I’ll like you for always,
As long as I am living –
My baby you’ll be.

Thanks Robert Munsch for the words I will
always sing to my beautiful daughter :) ...
and reminding me that it is ok to drive across town
with a ladder on my car and do a B&E as long as I give 
my big girl a snuggle and a song ;)

Saturday, 18 May 2013

Today You Are 20

Today you are 20 ...

How is it possible that the newborn baby with a wide eyed stare has now become such a beautiful  woman?

That the strong willed toddler who knew what she wanted is now the woman who refuses to give up or give in?

That the giggling girl has evolved into the woman who engages others with her smiles and laughter?

That the bright eyed pre-teen with a passion for being on stage has become a woman who can captivate her audience - whether onstage or not?

That the heartbroken teenager is now the woman who comforts and cares for those whose hearts are wounded?

In honor of this very special day, I would like to remind you of this ...


              You are BEAUTIFUL.

                            You are AMAZING.

                                          You are LOVED.

Happy Birthday my beautiful daughter!

Tuesday, 14 May 2013

Mom's Wise Words

I've come to the conclusion that I don't actually have children living in my house. I have for years affectionately referred to them as my 'weapons of mass destruction'; and I'm starting to think my Mom might have been on to something . . .

You see, my Mom always told me when I was not listening and/or was misbehaving to "be careful, because what you choose to do now will come back to haunt you ten times worse when you have your own children". At least I think that's what she said ... truth be told, I wasn't really listening ...

I'm realizing she had a point though. Because things are at least ten times worse with my own children - or so it sometimes seems ... (Well, unless we take into account that whole infamous ziploc bag flour fight of 1984 with my sister ... seriously, who knew the bags would explode so easily?!? And that flour is so hard to clean up?!?)

Case in point - we did a lot of outside work these past couple of weekends. We have 4.5 acres - so when I say a lot of outside work, I really mean it. As I'm sure is true for most of you, when outside work is being done, inside work is generally not - unless you are some super human and can do both at once, in which case, please call me immediately - I will pay you an amount beyond your wildest dreams to come and live in my house. No really, I will. (Call me.)

That isn't to say the house was a total disaster, but it definitely hasn't been kept up like when I was hibernating stuck inside during the winter months. It was all good until Saturday, when some pre-programmed search and destroy code was remotely activated (in honor of Mother's Day I'm fairly certain) and all heck broke loose - culminating in the simultaneous clearing of each and every shelf of its contents in my office, emptying the rubbermaid bin of Lego all over the basement, and half eaten yogurt tubes stashed like land mines in various locations around the house. 

Then, in a stroke of pure luck genius, a kitchen chair was pushed over onto the floor with such force that an expensive decorative bowl was launched into the air from the resulting vibration, shattering into 'a thousand million pieces' throughout the kitchen and down the basement stairs. (I'm throwing 'thousand million pieces' in as an ode to my own Mom, who once exclaimed that this was how my Uncle's brand new cassette player would end up if he didn't quit sneaking up on her and secretly making recordings. My sister is laughing out loud right now. My Mom on the other hand, probably isn't ... it's always been kind of a sore spot. That and the STOP sign she ran in Blackfalds when we were 5. Who knew something like that would be so memorable for a little kid?!?)

Part of me hopes that Mom was right - if you behave badly as a kid, you will pay for it later with your own children. Sweet revenge if you will - much like the look of victory on her face when we told her we were pregnant with twins ... 

But then I lay awake at night thinking about how terrible active and exuberant my grandchildren could be - and because the kids are talking about having big families (who doesn't want to dream of having 10 kids when you are 6), there will be lots of them running around and Lord knows WHAT could happen?! It would be like my field of gophers - only I probably couldn't shoot a pellet gun at them to make them go away ... or maybe I could, because 'what happens at Grandma's stays at Grandma's', right? Especially if you give them cookies in exchange for their silence. Ok, I wouldn't really shoot at them - the kids I mean, that would just be cruel. The gophers on the other hand are fair game.

At any rate, it's a good thing my little weapons of mass destruction come in cute little packages that always remember to tell me how much they love me when I put them to bed at night. Because I sure do love them, despite their efforts to drive me crazy. Just like my Mom loves me even when I tease her a little bit ... right Mom? 


Yeah, I might be getting what I deserve ;)