Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Christmas 2010

Nothing quite like Christmas with a little guy who is stoked for it! This has been the most enjoyable season in my recent memory. Tools and tractors made it magical!

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

The Bump

In relation to my career, I'd heard of bumping before. I have to admit I always kind of thought of it like an urban legend. I didn't know it still happened or that it was a real thing.

Until I got

That's right. Someone with more seniority has decided to take my position. And apparently, they have that right. So much for job security. In this game I then have to bump someone else with less seniority than me. I got a list of eligible positions. None of them looked good to me but to keep my seniority I really had to take one. And so I have.

It feels awful to be bumped. And awful to have to bump someone else. Who thought this crazy game up??

Now I am becoming an ER nurse. It doesn't feel like a good fit for me - 12 hr shifts, heavier lifting, weekends, nights, holidays. I realize I was lucky enough to have the most amazing position earlier. But I never imagined it could just be swiped from me. The change is effective Jan 10.

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Suggestions for a Boring Day off

I had no plans when the Boy woke me up this morning. Just a relaxing day at home. After a while we decided to go check out the Mom's group in town. I'm not off on Thursdays as a rule and hadn't been able to attend at all this year.

As we were getting ready I had to run upstairs for something. "Mom, I had an accident" echoed up the stairs. What was that about? He never has accidents with #1 anymore. Off to the naughty chair, for he knows better. In fact, he took himself while I washed the floor and threw in a load of laundry. Just before leaving the house I called the Dog in. He didn't come. I tried that for 10 min with no luck. Tough luck for him, I figured. It's nice out and he can just hang out till I get home. A few minutes away from home I spotted him. And he spotted me. He started to race the car home so I followed and threw him in the house. Departure, take two.

After group we went to a neighboring town. Decided to try Chiropractic. Hey, maybe it'll help the Boy sleep better. You never know! I'll confess, the crackers scare me though. We went to see a clicker. The Boy did great. Maybe he even enjoyed it.

We grabbed some lunch at Chicken Chef, a rare treat. I figured he would fall asleep on the way home. But I should have known better. Upon walking in the house I noticed that nice fresh laundry smell. Perhaps a little too nice. And then I noticed the Blue puddle on the floor. And the Tide bottle tipped on it's side.

So I:

- did approximately 703 loads of laundry
- took the blue stained carpet outside and washed it with the hose
- and the other that I had repeatedly asked Husband to clean
- and one more for the heck of it
- washed the walls in the laundry room and entrance
- washed the entrance floor

I was planning to work out today but I think perhaps I already have.

The Boy was so busy helping the he forgot to have a nap. When I realized how late it was I decided to try a new approach. Set him up with his blanket and Mighty Machines while I had a bath. This plan failed as evidenced by the THUDS I've heard while upstairs. He says he was making a building for me. I don't know what that means at this point and am gladly procrastinating finding out as I'm sure it entails further cleaning.

Oh, and the Husband will be on his way home from work soon. I'd better get on supper!

Thank God for days "off"...

Sunday, October 31, 2010

Celebrating a Decade

I suppose it's not entirely abnormal to feel lost and confused in early adulthood. I like to do things to the extreme and so that was how I straddled that space between teen and adult. It was a head spinning, dizzying sort of time. I didn't know who I was and who I wanted to be. I couldn't balance work and school and self discovery. So I took a break. Or I broke. I suppose it depends on your perspective.

It's not a place I like to visit. Sometimes when I remember it still fills me with fears. In fact, I can't even recognize the woman I am today when I think of the scared young adult I was. They say the best way to get rid of the stigma of mental illness is to share your story. Sometimes I want to, but often I don't. Occasionally I'm afraid of what others might think. But stronger than that is the sense of my own frailty which still scares me. Who was I during those years when I danced on the brink? There are lots of bad memories, a few good, and most of them hazy. I'm not ashamed of that time in my life and I'd talk to you about it over coffee. But it does still take a toll on my emotions.

9 years ago yesterday I got serious about changing that. I boarded a plane on Halloween and flew to Ontario. Then I got on a taxi that drove me to a wonderful, albeit scary (the unknown, that is) place. Three and a half months of intense learning and reformatting. Constant encouragement and one amazing friendship gave me the leg up I had been needing. I came home and my strength deepened. My faith returned in a stronger and different form, for it had largely disappeared during that time.

Fast forward till now. Married to a wonderful, understanding and supportive man. Mom of the best little boy ever. It turns out that I love being a Mom! Enjoying my career as the nurse I thought I might never be. Although I worked hard to pull myself back up I can't take credit. Perhaps God had mercy on me. Perhaps I got lucky. Most likely it's a combination of all of the above.

It's not that my life now is without hardship or that I've "arrived". I dip into depression from time to time. I struggle with various thoughts and behaviors. Memories from my past invade my dreams and drive me to anxiety. Sometimes. But now I know my triggers. I'm way more comfortable with who I am. My coping skills are much improved.

Sometimes I wish I knew how to use my life and my story to help other people. That's something I'm still figuring out. But for now I'm living my life, thankful to be where and who I am. Not ever taking it for granted. Realizing that the garbage in my past actually formed me to be better. And stronger.

Still realizing my fragility.

Sunday, October 24, 2010


Thump. Pitter, patter, pitter, patter.

I look at the time. It's 2 AM.

"Mommy. I'm broken."

"What? Where are you broken"

"In my bum Mommy"

I take him back to his room. Snuggle with him. Sniff. Oh dear, smells like some business was done. This is a function he can control. If it happened without him meaning to, well then of course it must be broken.

Clean up time. More snuggles. More sleep.

Sunday, October 10, 2010


I have a post rattling about my brain. The more I ruminate on these thoughts in my mind, the more complicated they become. I need time to sit and get it down on paper or puter in some kind of logical and carefully worded order. It's coming. Perhaps in sections.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Fall Goals

I see, since my absence, that I've lost all of my followers. Time to re-vamp my blog!

In a few days it will be officially be autumn. I spent my summer working a lot. It's going to change now. We've accomplished most of our immediate financial goals and it's time to slow down and enjoy life. Time to make time for regular workouts and healthy meals. Time for massages and trips to the city just for coffee. Time to sleep and take naps. And time to experiment with cooking and bone up on the cleaning.

This fall is going to be a great new start! It's September after all. Isn't that when most things start up again?

Monday, September 6, 2010

Fall on the Farm

The summer has passed in the blink of an eye. I took a break from blogging and the gym and spent time with the family and at work. We accomplished Potty Training (most of the time) and got the landscaping done. We spent many hours playing at Nana's farm and playing in the water with friends. We explored Tinkertown and a local town fair. We spent lots of time with old friends and forged new friendships.

Today the Boy, Nana, and myself went to the Mennonite Museum for Fall on the Farm. First stop was the Candy Store to sustain us on our journey. We watched the blacksmith heat and pound some metal. We climbed the windmill and watched them grind some wheat. The steam tractors were out and a kind Engineer invited the Boy up to see the fire and turn the steering wheel. We petted rabbits, goats, and donkeys. The Barrel Train was lots of fun! All this plus chicken butchering and fresh pickles!

Exploring all of these things with a toddler makes it all new and fun again. I just love re-discovering life with him!

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Birthday Celebrations

I am so lucky to have both of my parents around. Last month both of them celebrated their birthdays. By being smart enough to carry the camera I got lots of awesome pictures without me being featured in any of them.

Check it out!

My sister was home for Mum's birthday. We invited her sister along as well. First we went for delicious Italian food. Too many choices on the menu!

But oh, so yummy!

This Gooseberry light on fire right after I took the picture. What better way to kick off 55 than with a fire?!

Then we went to my sister's condo for a rousing game of Scrabble. We let Mum win. Followed by Carol, and Jen. I brought up the tail end.

It was an awesome evening!

We celebrated Dad's 57th on June 26th at the neighborhood coffee shop - the Back Porch. My Grandparents came too. We dined on fruit, cheese, and baked goodies. The coffee was hot and strong. Bacon, sausages and eggs followed.

The Birthday Boy!

If there is a party, my Grandparents are sure to crash it!

The Boy "smiling" for the camera

(I love the facial expressions in this photo)

The whole crew. Grandma is in this photo somewhere....

Sunday, June 6, 2010

Fun with Family

We got back from our road trip to Calgary a week ago already. Our time there was bittersweet. It was great to spend time with family and we really enjoyed meeting baby Rachel. She did well during the time we visited. Amazing considering that she's functioning on an essentially two chambered heart!

From a medical perspective, it's pretty cool the way her body has adapted around her defective heart. From a personal perspective it's just tragic.

The Flames House in Calgary is a pediatric palliative care center. I can't rave enough about the place. It sucks to have to be there but if you find yourself in a situation like this... what a blessing!

The Boy and I did find ourselves some fun. We went to the zoo, rode the C-train, and giggled past midnight on the mattress on the floor in a kind person's basement.

Here are some photos:

Air hockey with Auntie Jen. Also, it looks like he has big hips. This is an angle I've never seen of him....

The horses in Calgary are really tame. And odd looking. Giddy up!

The coolest swing of all time. Even Mummy wants to snuggle in and suck her thumb in this kind of cozy!

Extreme wheelchairing

Definitely cousins!

Friday, May 21, 2010

Thursday, May 20, 2010


I'm almost ready to head out of the house. The Boy and I are taking our first road trip together. Nana and Papa are coming to. Our destination is Calgary. My brother lives there. With his beautiful wife and family. Literally, as soon as the Boy awakes from his Slumber we are outta here!

You may think we're heading on a vacation. The truth is that my niece is going to be born. Tomorrow. Her name is Rachel Amariah. At the routine 20 week ultrasound they discovered that things weren't quite right. Now, through extensive and detailed testing, we expect that she won't live long. Nobody knows how long or how short her life may be.

I've witnessed amazing strength as my family deals with this news. Her parents have wrapped her in love from the beginning. There are no rosy thoughts of miracles, etc. They are facing reality. Decisions have been made and plans are in place so that when Rachel comes they can just focus on her. Such anguish. Such love. Yet such peace.

It's bittersweet. Rachel has already taught us so much. We will love to to bits now and forever after. I was thinking today, God, why the bittersweet? Why not JUST bitter or JUST sweet. It feels like torture to love something/someone only to lose them.

But I realized something. If there was just bitter or sweet, the bitter would overwhelm the sweet. I'm afraid I would just see the ugliness. So we have to have the sweet with the bitter. Otherwise we'd have a world full of jaded or incredibly happy, sheltered (and this might be worse than jaded) people. It just keeps things in focus.

See you tomorrow, Rachel.

Thursday, May 6, 2010


I have to admit that I sometimes feel like the odd Mama out, here in this town. This town which is slowly becoming "my" town again.

You see, I love my job. I find meaning and purpose in caring for people outside of my own family. My heart is caring. I like my patients and, usually, they like me. I work with a fabulous team. I get lots of positive feedback about my performance and enjoy being part of a team.

Most of the Mums here take great pride in staying home with their children. I'm not sure that I have met any that work outside of the home. I certainly believe there is no more important job than raising your own children. Sometimes I wish that would be all I want. To stay home and watch my Boy grow up.

But I don't. I want to work part time. Not full time, just part. The thing is, I'm happier when I get out of the house. I have more patience and more fun with my family. There is a fine line. At times I have picked up too many shifts and run myself near ragged. Then I become the Mama Monster and that isn't cool for anyone.

It's interesting to move back to my old hometown. I can't say that moving back has felt like coming home. It's starting to feel more comfortable. But sometimes I feel like I just don't fit in all that well. It's getting better with time and I assume it will continue to. I'm just gonna continue doing what makes me happy.

Friday, April 9, 2010

Spring Break and Photos

I've been working a lot lately. However, I took last week off just to be with the Boy. Fun was on the agenda. We went to Brandon and enjoyed the Royal Manitoba Winter Fair. We saw horse shows, the Superdogs, and the Kubota tractor that leveled the sand after every performance. The latter was the most exciting part for Isaiah.

The puddles on the driveway have dried up now, but they sure were fun!

Lots of silly time

And a brand new, shiny raincoat!

I managed to spend lots of time with friends and consume large amounts of coffee. The windows got cleaned, inside and out, with the help of the Husband. The fish filters were pulled out and cleaned. I finally caught up with laundry. It has, for the record, gotten away from me again.

I loved just chillin' with my Boy. He's growing up and it makes me happy and sad all at once. The daycare he is at now is awesome and I can see the influence of the older Boys on his language and play. He no longer giggles for a positive response to my questions. This week it turned to "yeah". And just like that my Baby disappeared! He talks full sentences most of the time and is a pretty happy kid. We're only up about once a night now. Eventually he will sleep through the night! Of that I am sure.

What a great week!

Friday, April 2, 2010

The Blog Life

Of COURSE I'll keep it up. My brother and sister read it ! And if nobody else does, it would still be worth it. They don't "do" Facebook.

Wednesday, March 31, 2010


I don't blog much anymore. I have more followers on Facebook and not that much to say. The question is, should I keep it up?

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Tales from the Tub

Here is what I learned today while soaking in the tub and reading "Today's Parent"

- it's recommended to medicate your child before taking them to the ER. Apparently medical professionals don't need living proof of a fever.

- kids will remember the time you take to play with them, not how clean your floors are

- if you save $50 every 2 weeks for 50 years you will have $35,600 assuming you earn 3% annual interest

- kids in home-based daycares watch 2 more hours of TV daily than kids in structured daycares. 2.4 hours vs 0.4 hrs a day! Trying to minimize screen time for the Boy, who eats, lives, breathes, and dreams Mighty Machines is one of my current battles.

- Poop tested from colicky babies showed double the inflammation as compared to non-colicky babies, similar to adults with Irritable Bowel Syndrome! I say bring on the Acidophillus.

- there is such a thing as a "sleep doula"

- lots of kids don't sleep through the night. different techniques work for different parents and different kids.

- some people think sleep patterns are partly personality. some people have also come to the conclusion that infant and toddlerhood are fleeting and that instead of spending time feeling guilty and resentful about night wakings a conscious decision to enjoy that time with your child makes all the difference in the world. "I spent moths agonizing over how to help my child learn to sleep when I could have been enjoying the hours of cuddling," one Mama says.

- most girls 11-13 want more involvement from their Daddy

- only half of all boys are potty trained by age 3

So there you have it. It's an educational experience.

Sunday, February 7, 2010

This n' That

I haven't written for a while, so while the Boys chill on the couch and watch the Superbowl I shall get things up to speed. Dad, Tim, and my boys are hanging out. Dad is cheering for the loser, whoever that may be at any given moment and so his team is sure to lose.

We're just over half way through winter, I think. This winter has been way easier than last and has been, for the most part, pretty easy. Lately I've been finding myself unreasonably anxious at times and I remind myself that spring is coming. The days are getting longer, the sun is feeling warm. There are some little changes coming down the tubes that occupy a lot of my thoughts. Nothing big or life changing.

My toddler keeps life exciting. I often say it's less work to go to work than it is to stay home with him. He's incredibly verbal and picks up concepts in no time. Sleep is our ongoing issue. On average we're up twice a night. Otherwise he's pretty easy going and fun loving.

The Husband is gearing up for his first course towards his Masters of Counselling. I think it's going to be a stretching, growing kind of time for him from which I expect good things. He is planning to get involved with the Behavioral Health Unit at work and thinking beyond to his retirement years. He can have a full pension at 46!

My work is starting to feel comfortable. I love my job and my coworkers. I wouldn't trade it for anything. I never believed I would find such a good fit for myself.

Life is a pretty comfortable kind of normal. We're growing, loving, and learning. Our house feels like home and our community... well that's starting to feel maybe a little bit like home too. We're planning a trip to visit family in May. We're going to spend as much time with Baby Rachel as we can and love my brother and his family with everything we've got. A small trip to Minneapolis in June to see U2 in concert will be it for the summer. We have lots of landscaping to do!

And that pretty much sums it up!

Sunday, January 24, 2010

My Niece

How complicated life can become in such a short time. I have learned a lot about the Baby my Brother and Sister-in-law are planning to welcome into their lives this coming May. A routine 20 week ultrasound revealed some concerns. Further testing revealed that I will have another niece, but also that she will be a very sick little girl. Among other concerns she has Dandy-Walker Variant, Hypo-plastic right heart syndrome, heterotaxy, and truncus arteriosis. It all boils down to a whole bunch of unknowns. It is likely that this beautiful girl will be held in her parents arms, surrounded by love as she goes into the arms of Jesus.

However, nothing is sure. She may live for 5 minutes. 5 days. 5 weeks. 50 years. We will have a better idea of her outcome at birth, but her heart conditions are serious and possibly "incompatible with life".

Her Mommy and Daddy love her. Her extended family loves her. I think we love her more fiercely than we would have otherwise at this stage in her growth as we realize how limited our time with her likely will be.

It will be a long road til May. And after that, only God knows.

Sunday, January 3, 2010

Reflections and Resolutions

Wow. It's 2010! That sounds much more futuristic than it actually is. A new year always prompts me to think about the year that I've left behind. I would say I'm more prone to thinking about the past than I am to making lots of New Year's resolutions.

Last year, in brief, was a year of changes. We've been packing the changes in in the last couple of years. We moved into our house in January. In April the Boy was hospitalized with respiratory issues. Then a few weeks later I secured the best Nursing job I could ever have dreamed for. We bought a second vehicle so that I could commute to work. This also opened up new possibilities for me to connect with others back in the city and in my new town. I gained a much needed 10 pounds. Since summer my life has become a nice kind of normal. There was so much good, and in the same breath, so much heartache. Life always seems to be such a mixture.

In the year ahead I have a few goals and wishes. I want to stay healthy in mind and body. It will mean more workouts at home and pursuing healthy friendships. I want to step outside of my comfort zone and create relationships, getting more involved with my community. I want my home to be warm and welcoming, nurturing and safe. I want my relationship with my Husband to grow stronger. I want my child to be healthy, potty trained, and in a big kid bed. I want to work on expanding our little family. I want to brush the dog more regularly and keep the fish tank cleaner. I want to have a strong back and find a new, amazing physiotherapist.

What did I just say about not making many resolutions? Oops.

But that shouldn't be too much to aim for. Should it?