Thursday, March 27, 2008

Galoshes, Grins and Gallons of Laundry Detergent!

Galoshes: I have been meaning to post about my most recent purchase of rubber foot attire for a while now! You know you live in a hick town when...! Since she's been able to walk Karys has always favored her rubber boots over all other shoes. So when we went to go get Daisy one day out of the garage and found that she had helped herself to the upper portion of Karys' beloved boots, we were all sad! Imagine my delight when husband-dear returned from shopping at Extra Foods one day in Sechelt and surprised me with these...

Well they obviously were not for me, but I was as excited as if they were! I love these boots and was so impressed with deary's purchase!!

So these lovely new galoshes have taken first place in Karys' shoe wardrobe and I can't argue!

Never to be out-done by my daughter, I realized that with our return to hick-ville, and all the melting snow, there would inevitably be MUD! And recently purchased boots for the previous snow season would not stand up to the mucky on slot that awaited!
So out I went with the purchase of my own set of rubber footwear stashed away in the back of my mind! And...lo-and-behold, what do I find in trusty old Wal-Mart but a mommy-sized version of puddle jumpers!! SOLD! If you ever want to feel like a kid again, I recommend strapping on a pair of these puppies and strutting your stuff! These boots have now become my number one choice - but don't worry, it's not like I've lost all city-slicker senses - I don't go shopping in them or anything!!

And in attempts to help Avery not feel left out, I couldn't resist a pair I saw when I visited our local (45 minute drive) version of Extra Foods - just call us the "gals with groovy galoshes!"
They're just so darn cute!
Grins: On to the next point of discussion, my darling number two daughter! She is such a happy little thing (except when she's not!) and I just feel so blessed with her disposition! Even though she is almost four months old it seems as though she is still in the just eating/sleeping mode! I really don't remember Karys being in this stage for this long!! And not only is she still in this newborn mode, but she is also very alert and aware of people around her! Best of both worlds! So...if she's not sleeping then she's totally awake and usually practising one of two things: smiling or cooing! I am not too sure why this intrigues me so? It's not as if Karys was a particularly grumpy baby! But Avery is so go-with-the-flow! I feed her when she wants to be fed and let her sleep whenever she seems to be tired; if it's only a few ounces and a few minutes or a full bottle and a full night's sleep, her demeanour is always the same! So I thought I'd share with you what we get to see whenever we go in to get her from a sleep: here she is Little Miss Smiley Pants!

First little peak into her room!

Changing her bity bum!

Getting ready for some num-nums!

Gallons of Laundry Detergent: Onto my last point of discussion! One that I am sure all mothers are intimately familiar with!! Now don't faint with shock or judge me to be some ??? but I am not a weekly-bedding-washer! I know, I should be and I am striving to get better, but it just never happens! I will go through a period when all things dirty are now clean and "this time I will stay on top of it all!" and then before I know it two weeks have gone by and bedding has been forgotten! So, I guess in attempts to help me remember, a certain someone has been making it necessary that I change her sheets daily! Not that I am complaining, but Avery has started sleeping through the night! And when a baby who only drinks milk - and a lot at that - goes long hours sleeping, it means she also goes long hours peeing and not being changed! So...every morning when I go in to get my bity bundle she, without fail, has peed through her jammies, sheet, and padding underneath! Needless to say, Tide has become a close friend as of late! So in ending my rant, I will never complain about a baby who sleeps 7-11-7-11, but if I could keep the bedding from getting a daily soaking, I'd just be able to get that much more of the other stuff done! Like getting these hung...

Cute wooded letters - cut from a piece of 1x8 - with fancy paper decoupaged over them, hung with twisted pieces of wraffia (sp??)! A bit different than Karys' first attempt:

Too bad I couldn't get a better close-up shot! The paper I used looks to be the same, but is totally different! K's are bright gingham pieces, and A's are muted pastel swirls!

It has to end sometime!! So I'll end this marathon post with a picture of the cutest shoes that are my personal favorite in Karys' collection!

Still trying to find a mommy-sized pair of these babies!

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Darkness Before the Dawn

Well, I thought I'd take this time to remember. To count my blessings and reflect on where we were a year ago! (Please bear with me as this will inevitably be a long reflective post - personal therapy made public!)Last year was a funny one - living with my Mom and completely renovating her house. Needless to say we felt very blessed to have a permanent set of Gram-hands always ready to care for Karys! And living on the Sunshine Coast wasnt bad either! But in the midst of all the busy-ness, all the fix-ups and tear-downs and visiting, we were attempting to get pregnant. And, simply put, we never knew when the right time was, especially with my cycle! So knowing our history and wanting our children close together, we thought we'd start pretty early trying for #2. By the time we got to Sechelt (Feb'07) we had already had 10 months of UNsuccess! Oh how those months dragged on, and oh how I hate to make something that is supposed to be enjoyable so regimental! It gets so discouraging, month after month having that dear "Aunt Flow" pay you a visit reminding you of your supposed fertility only to show herself again the next month. So, imagine my utter surprise when I decided to take another pregnancy test a little while after we got to my mom's place - with a faint glimmer of hope because I was (by whatever skewed calculations I used) a few days late! I know - a few days is nothing, but a girl can dream right. I wasn't going to tell Jim about taking the test though because he had enough on his plate to deal with, let alone anticipating the state of his wife after another failed test! Off I went to the bathroom, did my duty and sat...waiting...never to look before the proposed 3 minute time limit for fear of jinxing the whole thing! Time was up and because I wasn't telling Jim about this test, I had to be the deed-doer! I HATE flipping that test over to see the results! So...picked it up and...what??? Could it be??? Could there actually be a faint second line on that stick???? Oh! My! Goodness! "I think that's a second line!? Is it? Man - I think we did it!" Talking to yourself - never a good sign! But I was so shocked! So there I sat, alone on the porceline tub with a goofy grin on my face, giddy with the glee of another being forming itself inside me...maybe! Because I wasn't sure whether it was a second line, I waited for a few years...I mean days, to take the second test, and this time it was there! That second line on the stick sat there and stared me straight in the face! Ha! Finally! We've did it and we're done! Now that this is happening we'll never have to try again!

Now - what to do with this information! I knew I needed to tell Jim, but when! As fate would have it, Valentine's Day was only a few days away! What a perfect gift! What an awesome wife I was going to be! Give him the gift we've been waiting ten moths for! And he'd never expect a thing! So the day came, and I could hardly wait! We went out for dinner and I had played it up to make it look like I hadn't gotten him anything! He gave me my gift and we shared a kiss and as we were waiting for the bill to come I did it! I passed him the (clean) pregnancy test under the table! You should have seen the look on his face! "What the heck is she trying to give me under the table?!" I'm sure it would have taken him a while to figure it out, but the mile long grin on my face helped him realize! There we sat! Giddy as two school kids! Already starting to plan for what we'd do with two and how Karys would respond and when we'd tell people!
Days passed and we kept our little secret, sharing winks across the room, feeling so sneaky keeping our precious one a secret! But it was right after telling Jim that this feeling came over me! As I lay there one night in bed, I thought "something's wrong." I told him about this feeling right away, but he just told me to chalk it up to jitters about this pregnancy because it had taken so long! I tried, but my instincts kept telling me "something's wrong." One night when I told Jim of my feelings again, he ask what I meant, and the only way I could describe it was I just didn't feel pregnant. His response was "well you shouldn't. It's only been a few weeks!" Okay Mr.Rational, I'll play your game for a while, but I still don't feel right! And then it started! After about a week of giddy secret keeping, planning for the future of this precious one inside me, the spotting started! PANIC! I just started to panic! I knew I shouldn't have done that run, I am so selfish, I should have taken it easy! All the mental reprimanding I could muster I took out on myself in a matter of minutes! Telling Jim was so hard, but he took it in stride and just suggested to make a doctors appointment! Okay, I'll do it. Maybe it is nothing. Tons of women spot during pregnancy, especially during the first trimester! Think positive! Well, I did and it didn't work! The spotting turned from old to new, and it went from light to heavy and I saw the entire future of my baby falling away! I was a basket case! Crying all day long, taking out my anger on God and Jim. When he'd try to comfort me and tell me it would all be alright I'd just tell him to leave me alone! How were things going to be alright when I was losing my baby! All of a sudden it became my mission to save her! I went to the doctors and he made me an ultrasound appointment and everything was going to be okay! Positive thinking is the key right?? Well, the screen proved to be further proof: they couldn't find a heart-beat, but assured me that if I came back in a week they'd find it...if she lasted that long! But not to worry! RIGHT! So there I went, all by myself to be the bearer of bad news...again! No...stay saw it on the can will it to be okay! So there I bed...flat on my back scared to do anything! I was going to make this baby better because God surely wasn't doing anything! Man was I angry! And then...heavy turned into heavier and I started cramping and cramping turned to contactions!! Despite my year-long vigil of prayer that I would never have to go thru a miscarriage, I knew exactly what was happening. That night, only mere hours after seeing my baby on the screen in the hospital, I lost her! And with that...temporarily lost all sanity! How could I! How could all my attempts have failed and my baby be gone?! What a horrible mother I was! And...looking back, how sorry I am now to have put my dear husband and mother thru my momentary laps of sanity! I was a mess!

So...after a midnight trip to emergency they confirmed the obvious and told me that "there was nothing you could have done, many embryos simply don't make it." But this wasn't "an embryo"!! This was my baby, and she was there this afternoon, and now she's not! Don't you understand!!!!!!! I saw her!!! And I guess that was the solace I had to cling to...I saw her! I got a glimpse of my dear one this side of heaven! Thank you Jesus for that glimpse! Now that's not to say that I didn't have my share of anger toward God for taking her home to be with Him instead of letting me raise her first. Looking back, seeing her on the screen was what made it so hard to lose her, but was also what made me so thankful. I got that rare opportunity to see our baby before she left us to go to a better place! And although there were many tears shed on both our parts, Jim and I are so thankfull for our darling #2! We have a baby waiting for us in Heaven! A child we were blessed with for a few weeks. She is ours, we've never had to discipline, never had to say "no," never had to hear her cry! That is the peace which got me through! That and Mr. Rational (Jim) reminding me of God's perfect timing and pleasing plan for my life! Although I viewed her due date as fate trying to reclaim October as a month to enjoy (instead of dread because it was the month my Dad died), it also ended up being the month we had to pack up and move a 30 acre farm. And even I knew that having a new-born in the midst of moving would have been challenging to say the least! So, we mourned, we thanked God for our mutual support, we named her Eden, and we got a tree! We got a beautiful magnolia tree and planted it in memory of her...Eden! And when it blooms we are reminded of her and the hope of meeting her one day! Until then, we enjoy the blossoms! And, of course, our darling #3 that we were blessed with conceiving only a month after! Thus the dawn had arrived!

Thank you Jesus for fulfilled promises and for forgiveness in times of doubt!

Monday, March 24, 2008

Picture-posting Newbie! (have patience...I'm learning)

And the end of a busy weekend calls for a post!! Well, try as I might, Karys was still much more interested in the chocolate aspect of Easter than the fact that Jesus rose from the dead. But I did continue to insist that the reason we were getting all these treats was because Jesus wanted us to be happy, celebrating with Him the fact that He came back to life; thus, the Easter Bunny comes to give us treats. Far-fetched, I know, but a mom's gotta try!

So Sunday morning arrived and I think I was more excited about the girls' easter dresses than they were - obviously! But they are just so darn cute! Avery's was a hand-me-down from Karys and I was planning on giving in to the fact that Karys would not have a dress this year, nor did she need one, because a dress isn't necessary to celebrate Easter. However, I wasn't about to stop my Mom when she called from Costco asking what size of dress I thought she should by for Karys!!

Church was enjoyable and a nice way to stop and reflect on the true blessing Easter is for those who believe. And, seeing as how Karys has declined all attempts to join in on sunday school, I am actually able to sit thru a service these days! After church was the obvious nap for all but the Easter Bunny (yours truly). As I scurried around getting the baskets ready and hiding all the treats, I began to feel the joy one gets in giving/doing for others. I think I almost had more fun getting things ready for Karys than she had hunting - a time I also took to reflect on the years my Dad was our Easter Bunny and how much joy he must have taken in that job title!

Baskets, chocolates, stuffies, and bunny ears ALL courtesy of the Dollar Store - where everything is just one dollar! Gotta love it!

Once Karys woke up she got right into the finding of treats and was so surprised that this bunny had hidden "so many"! We enjoyed a few of her treats before heading over to Oma and Opa's for a great family dinner and ended the evening coming home and lounging on the sofa - all four of us!

So today is when one gets to deal with the aftermath of a holiday full of treats - trying to get real food into a 2 year old before the treats become a fixation takes true creativity! As I sit here typing Avery is still sleeping (fed her last night at 11, she woke up at 7am, fed her again and still she sleeps!), and Karys is reading to herself - something she doesn't enjoy doing very often, but something I love! She sounds sooo cute when she tries to remember what the pages say in certain books! Right now she's quite taken with "Green Eggs and Ham" and how that guy "no likes geen ham...eee nend (the end)" Off she runs to replenish her book choices!!

In other news, Jim has work this week, something foreign but very welcomed, so us girls are adjusting to not having Daddy around. I know we are a very fortunate couple to have as much time together as a family as we do, so when work does come up, we are fine to have to say goodbye in the early morning hours, knowing that this time will surely end! As glad as I am to have a hubby who is self-employed, I think I wouldn't mind living the life of one whose hubby has a 9-5! But it might get boring pretty fast! All that certainty!! Nevertheless, my days are pretty much the same - trying to get all done that needs to be done! So far, I'm way behind!! But due to the fact that it snowed another 2 inches last night, I can cross "go for a walk" off my list! You coasters have no clue! The sun is out, but when there's still 3-4 feet of snow left on the lawn to melt, I begin to wonder if we'll ever see grass! But I guess I'd take sun/snow over the rain!

So off I go to: unload, clean up, defrost, mix and sweat! I am going to attempt another batch of play-doh today - anyone have a fool-proof recipe they'd care to share! My last batch turned out like over worked, marblized bread dough! I'll leave you with these pictures - Karys attempting to play with the doh, Avery's newest hobby (despite all of Jim's attempts against it!) and me and my girls! Have a great day and take some time to reflect on our blessings - there are many, we just need to open our eyes wider!

Love the hair-do Care Bear!

Such a cutie!

Me and my girls!
(sorry for the picture placement - this computer hates me!)

Friday, March 21, 2008

Bunnies and Crosses

So, it's Easter, yet again. And I find myself contemplating the significance of this holiday! Amidst all the bunny ears, chocolate eggs and pastel baskets there lies the true meaning of Easter - Jesus' sacrifice for my sins, His death on the cross!

Although the pictures of easter egg hunts, fancy dinners and pretty dresses are all well and good, it is this true meaning of Easter that tends to get hidden underneath it all. And it's the same thing with Christmas - I need to, amidst all the superficial commercialization of this holiday, teach my girls (and remind myself) of its real significance! Jesus died for me! And as humbling and somber as that is, in two days I get to rejoice in the other truth of this holiday..."on the third day, He rose again!" My God is a living God! My sins are covered with the blood of Jesus and His death has brought me eternal life! How blessed I am! How loved I am! And it's not just me - Jesus' death is a sacrifice for anyone willing to accept it! His love is for all who want it! I hope and pray that as we indulge in the frivolousness of this holiday (because who can say no to chocolate) that its true meaning will sink deep into our hearts and with utter humility we can say "Thank you Jesus - for dying - for raising from the grave - for loving me!"

Thursday, March 20, 2008

Just Do It!

no...not like in the Nike ads. "Just do it" like in my head these past few months as I attempted to resist the prodings to start up my own blog! (Attempt failed...officially)!

So -here I am and here's my blog (I can't believe those words were just typed by my fingers!)
Aptly titled in hopes to document my ramblings and experiences as I journey thru this life God has chosen for me! I am (by way of a six year university career) an English teacher, but this by-no-means says that I am perfect in spelling/grammar, nor do I want to be at this point in my life! As a mother of a 2 yr old and a 3 month old, I will type these entries as my mind sees fit! And if that means short-cuts thru spelling/abbreviations, then so-be-it!

So...a bit about me...I am married to my wonderful husband who keeps me sane and attempts to keep me rational. But lets face it - he's way better suited for that job and what would life be like without an over-emotional element. I am also a mom, as I mentioned before, and that quite frankly even still scares ME! *start tangent* As experienced in the few classrooms I have taught in, claiming to be a teacher sends red lights flashing off in my brain that read "liar...liar" because I really don't feel like what the title "teacher" conjures up in ones mind. I am me and that's the same with being a mom...when I say that, those same red lights flash in my mind!*end tangent* But hey, I went thru the whole labour and delievery thing, so I know that they're mine! I have two beautiful girls and I could not ask for more...seriously, I am DONE, no more babies out of this body...please Lord! No, but honestly, my girls are everything to us! We really wanted two girls and that is what God has blessed us with! It took us a while to get them, but I will save that story for a time when I can figure out how to send you there at your own will - you know...when the letters turn a different colour when your mouse goes over them, and then you click, and are transported to the proposed page?! no clue how to do that yet, but we'll get there! Back to my girls, Karys is 2 and Avery is three months.

They were born just 5 days shy of 2 years apart (does that make sense?) Basically, I am just glad that #2 wasn't born on #1's birthday because then I'd never hear the end of it! It's bad enough that the poor girls were born in December...imagine my utter shock when Jim (hubby) said "it would be kinda neat if they were born on the same" NO! So not only were we married in December, and Christmas is in December, but now our two babies have their birthdays in December. I'm voting for 1/2birthdays - you know, come June we say "Oh, Karys, today you're four and a half, let's have a party!!" That way celebrations and gift-giving is equally divided throughout the year!? Whatever! Spoil them - you only live once!

Anyhow - now you know, I'm a wife and a mom. But I must officially relunquish my title of "Great Dane owner" as of tomorrow:( And as sad as I'll be to see our Daisy go, I know that I just do not have enough time for her! What a dog! She's great, and sure to make her new Vanderhoof owners very happy! (I must stop thinking about it now, because I have been having second and third and fourth etc. thoughts about selling her...we looked for her for over a year...she's what we always wanted...she's great with the girls...she's company for a walk...she'll be stressed out being moved into a new home...that grass IS always greener on the other side hey?!)Humbly, I live...and learn!

So...that's a bit about me! I'll save why I live up in this tiny hick town - away from friends and all things familiar for a later post!

Until then, I'll sign off as: "Still-learning-how-this-blogging-stuff-works-but-glad-to-have-posted-a-picture" Christina B