Tuesday, December 30, 2008

On the Cusp of a New Year

So it's not New Year's eve yet but I can't help feel how quickly this year has gone. It seems that time goes faster and faster when you have children. Maybe it's not that time goes faster it is just that they grow so quick you have more of a measuring stick to go by. E's done her part of kindergarten and it's strange to think that in 9 months she'll be in grade one when she hasn't even finished kindergarten yet. O will be 2 in April, E will be 6 in July and J on her way to being 4.

My husband hopes that next year will be better. Querying him on why he thought this year was so rough it turns out he keeps getting the year before (which truly was a difficult year) mixed up with this year. Though when I stop and think about this past year, it hasn't been without it's bumps. K finally settled his court case with his ex-employer in August, then the tax man decided he didn't like our deductions and re-assessed our 2005 and 2006 taxes and is denying our charitable donation and is making us pay our entire refund plus interest back. So there went all our savings. We're fighting it but who know how long it will take for them to decide in our favour or not. It's not just us, it's everyone that participated in the same charitable donation program. Completely above board but for whatever reason the Government feels they can gyp us.

We have been trying to sell our house for two selling seasons now. We've had our house in the market this last time since April and have relisted till next April. We are praying for just the right family to come and buy our house. K is still commuting to work, my work is struggling financially and we went through a yick time with the kids being sick from July through August. E had a terrible adjustment time at school and O suddenly developed separation anxiety going to bed. He's much better now but he still struggles with throwing up at night when he cries.

J is pretty much the only one that hasn't had any major issues. She's doing the whole 3 thing, not wanting to help and changing her clothes constantly throughout the day but she's pretty easy to deal with. She does have a tendency to want everything her own way so we're lucky we have other kids or it'd be so easy to just cater to her. She's that kind of kid.

We are so crammed in our part of the house now that I feel like I'm going crazy trying to organize myself. I hate not having places to put stuff. But hey, we have a roof over our head and food to eat and clothes on our back. When you break it down like that, we are pretty lucky and need to remember it more often.

What I'd like to see for the new year:

  • World Peace and Prosperity (naturally)
  • Our house to sell
  • move closer to husband's work
  • deal with MV (my store) once and for all get it settled
  • have more patience and time with the kids
  • buy a new house
  • find time for myself to do crafts and to EXERCISE
  • lose weight (who doesn't want that right?)
  • find more time with my two closest girlfriends
  • start that book I want to write
  • take up my bible more and pray more
  • get a digital e book reader
  • Get more organized

That's my list for now. I may add some more to it later.

Zeemaid

In the Mommy Trenches

Saturday, December 27, 2008

Merry Post Christmas

We had a wonderful Christmas day. Well, as wonderful you can get with a passionate 5 year old, a three year old who feels it's her duty in life to change 5x a day and refuse to wear anything mommy picks out and a 20 month old active little boy. Surprisingly, the present part went very well. Every one enjoyed opening their prezzies, mom (me) took lots of wonderful photos and for a time... all was serene and right with the world.


Maybe my expectations were too high... after all why should our behaviour be any better just because it IS Christmas day. Part of the problem, I admit, was my husband and myself. We hadn't gotten a lot of sleep. He for colon issues, me because I was paranoid the kiddies were going to get up in the middle of the night and rip open all the prezzies. It was almost like I was too excited and stressed to sleep. So neither of us slept well. It didn't make us any more patient with the kids. Usually, when it's a special day involved, I really, really try and suck it up and catch myself before I snap at the kids. Let's make it as pleasant as possible kind of thing. Unfortunately, Hubby was having a hard time sucking it up and finding that "inner peace". A fact which drove ME crazy. Stupid huh? So by 4 p.m. I was crying in the bedroom ready to send back all the presents and undecorate the tree.


How did it get so bad? Well it was a slow progression all afternoon. When E gets tired, she gets difficult to deal with, or to be specific whiny and cries and does the little thing I like to call the whine shimmy. You know... screws up her face in whine mode, shrugs her arms up and down and basically flails about while she's having a hissy to be repeated every single time she doesn't get her way or.... heaven forbid, mommy didn't hear her the first time. We ended up sending her to her room with a stern talking to. I think what finally broke me was the fact that I had just sat down and given her the talk, you know about our behaviour and trying to control our temper etc and being grateful for what you have etc... when I was leaving the room, she got up and proceeded to whine all over again. I was so mad I felt like hucking things and of course, poor hubby got in my way and he got an earful of his wrongs as well. SIGH... so I went to my room and cried and E fell asleep on her bed. I had to wake her up to go for dinner. She must have needed it because the rest of the evening, she was like a different child. We all breathed a sigh of relief.


Do you have one of those? One of those children that seem to set the whole house in a whirlwind? She's the one that's always barking, singing, jumping, chasing, growling, spinning, screaming and all around going crazy. She riles up the two little ones and can't seem to let them alone. Why do we even buy toys? No one plays with them, they just torture each other. When E's not home we all seem to breathe easier and the day just goes smoother. Isn't that awful? It makes me sad. Because if we have a hard time with her so do other people. Yet she's wonderfully creative, loves to dress up, sing and put on plays. She has an amazing imagination and loves to colour and create works of art. She has a kind heart and is very empathetic when you can get her to stop and think about what she's doing or when she sees someone else is hurting.


I guess life just has these ups and downs no matter what day it is. I just can't seem to learn how to take it in stride and not let it bother me. If I could do that, I think we'd be so much happier. correction... I'd be so much happier. Cause, after all, it was all MY fault according to hubby.


I was torn writing this post today. Do I gloss over all the negatives and write just the happy stuff or do I lay it all out like one big vomited mess. Lately my saying has been, if you're not happy, Fake it. Why ruin things for everyone else. That's kind of sad too. Thanks Dexter. (t.v. series I just started watching)


It's kind of like our camping trip, there were so many negatives and yet all the positives made up for it when you actually stopped to count the positives. Kind of like counting your blessings.


So what was wonderful about Christmas: we were woken up by E coming into our room telling us Santa had come. She would pop back in with different reports of what she's observed under the tree, without getting into anything. We heard J coming out and yelling Merry Christmas E, and running into our room Santa Came, Santa Came, Merry Christmas Mommy and O calling out in his crib in babytalk.. hey come get me.. I wanna see too.


We had a lovely present opening time. The girls loved their dolls we got them and had a fun time feeding them. O loved his cars and his car set. He got the best boy toy ever from his uncle and aunt and he actually is playing with a toy. WOW. He actually has a toy he likes. We had a lovely visit with my parents and a delicious Christmas dinner. The kids did not fall asleep on the way home and were very easy to put to bed. K and I were able to sit and watch a movie before bed and relax.


So what that it was all interspersed with grumpiness on our parts. It makes me recall certain Christmases of my childhood where I had been sent to my room and threatened by my mother that she was taking all my presents back. I even recall being so stubborn that I packed them up for her and setting them on my stool. The look on her face when she came in to talk to me sure made me feel bad, although I realize now that that look of hers was probably her own remorse for saying what she did. In the end I kept my presents, we kissed and made up... but it is still a Christmas in my memories. I don't remember what I got, but I must have really ticked my mother off. So you know what they say.... payback is a b#@!*.

So while I'm hoping that everyone had a great Christmas, I am also sorta hoping that people with kids can relate to what I'm saying. It surely can't be just us. Can it?

Zeemaid

In the Mommy Trenches

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Merry Christmas


Wishing you all a very Merry Christmas!


Happy Holidays,


From Zeemaid

Monday, December 22, 2008

It's Still Snowing


Okay, it's still snowing. I've been almost afraid to post since I got my first christmassy award from Court. After all, I don't wanna ruin my award winning set up! *L* Thanks to court for the award, I was tickled pink.


My husband is proudly telling anyone and everyone that I got an award! *LOL*

"Honey, honey, it's a made up award."

"So, it's still an award."

It did prompt me to enter my one snow photo into an online contest. Don't know if I will even get an honorable mention, but who knows.

So we did get some shopping done. Hubby rented an SUV and we headed off to the big city. Needless to say driving was an absolutely nightmare, cars in ditches, snow on the road. You know, the whole crazy people who don't how to drive in the snow because it's so rare here. It took my brother just 55 minutes to get out of the parking lot at a shopping mall. We were glad we decided to go to a smaller, less popular mall. We still had to sit in traffic a lot which was a drag. It seemed there was another big snowfall warning for Sunday/Monday so they were recommending to everyone to make sure they had their supplies on Sat. So sure enough the entire City was out in full force determined to get their provisions to hunker down and wait out the storm. *L* Anyone from someplace where it snows lots would be howling.


Here: Snow = Panic

We panicked in a sense too. This was our one and only shopping opportunity to be kidless from Sat until Xmas. So we shopped and shopped. We got it all done in just 2 hours at 2 malls. What went into the shopping cart? Everything! I think we were so worried about not being able to shop and not having presents for the kidlets that we bought EVERYTHING! We just didn't have the time to take it slow and weigh we wanted to get. If it was the right size, buy it. If it was age appropriate, buy it.


Man, this will teach me to be more prepared. Every year we tend to be the ones to shop early. I like to get it all planned out so it ticks me off when my brother approaches me a week before Xmas with a super rad gift idea for my dad that he wants me to go in on only I've already bought him a gift already. My bro, likes to play it close and always seems to wait to do Christmas shopping the last pay cheque before Xmas. Like there is suddenly more money then than the rest of the time. Let's face it, we all are usually sucking the money out of our accounts even if we don't have the extra. Why not do a little bit at a time and spread out the cost instead of having to pony up the dough all at once and being stressed the whole season that you're not going to make your other bills?

Of course, this year is tougher because of the recession but I wonder how many people will actually cut back and spend less this year? Or will they just put it all onto the credit cards and worry about it next year. So many of us these days try to shop our way into happiness. We've never been rich, just comfortable or maybe it's more apt to say just making it.


I'm tired of struggling to balance the check book. I hit a low point this summer when, trying to stick to a strict budget, realized that if we wanted juice we couldn't afford ice cream. Maybe next week kids. That totally sucked. AND we don't buy junk. That's just getting the staples but prices sure has gone up, that and my 3 kids are eating more. Yii. So I can understand why some people throw caution to the wind and just say f@#! it and go spend anyways. Of course, whenever I do do that, I regret it because suddenly we are in some financial crisis and it's because of overspending.

So don't mind me if I say Oprah's favourite things show is on the top of my hate most list. Who really wants to sit and watch an entire audience of people get free stuff and I mean really expensive free stuff. I'm happy for them but at the same point I'm green. I'd like to be able to sit there just once. I'd like just once to get a free makeover, home or personal. I'd like to be on the receiving end of some of that free stuff just once. But (a) I don't live in the U.S. anywhere remotely close to where these shows are made and (b) I don't have a sob story that would even qualify me. My living room isn't the ugliest in America etc... you know what I mean. So while I'm grateful that we're all healthy and our lives are bumping along relatively smoothly sometimes I think why not me too.

Ever watch extreme home makeover? It's a neat show and most of the families on there are very deserving, they like to play up how generous the family is etc, but I can't help but think there are so many other deserving people out there too so what about them? Do you think some of those people's neighbours must be resentful to see a crap house go and an over the top dream house pop while they themselves still have a crap house? Do you think if they did less on the main family's house that maybe they could afford to help MORE people? C'mon, normal every day people don't need houses like that.


Wow, that's not where I thought I was going with this post. Bit of a downer rant there.

I'm gonna have to get myself all cheered up. We're making Santa cookies this afternoon. That is cookies for Santa. Hopefully, they will last until the 24th *L*. And when you're baking with a 5 year old and 3 year old, you need to be upbeat cause the mess is gonna get heinous. This year a happy Christmas is gonna be a somewhat tidy house, three happy children, two parents with unlimited patience (maybe some time under the mistletoe) and snow, snow, snow outside. (Please Santa bring me some more patience)

Wishing you all a very Merry Christmas.


Zeemaid

In the mommy Trenches


Thursday, December 18, 2008

It's a Winter Wonderland


Okay... so last post I said Let it snow, Let it Snow. Well, I DIDN'T MEAN IT! No seriously, it can stop now, please, pretty please, please stop.

You guessed it, it's still snowing. We are getting a record snowfall. So far we have 27 inches with more expected tonight and tomorrow. I have NOT finished my Christmas shopping. I have NOT bought my son anything and I do mean anything yet. We just weren't able to get back to the store without the kids yet and now I don't know if we are going to make it into the City.

This is crazy. It's not normal for us. We used to get more snow when I was a kid but what with global warming etc.. our winters are pretty mild, we're lucky if it snows once a year never mind like this. We are usually considered the banana belt of Canada and our weather is more like England.. you know, rainy.

Don't get me wrong, as previously stated I do like snow. It's just I really really need to get my Christmas shopping done and hubby has a commute so I worry about him on the road. He didn't go in today but he might tomorrow and I'll worry the whole day.

The Plus side... it's pretty definite, almost positively positive that it will be a... white Christmas. Hurrah. We haven't had one of those in years. Down side, Christmas dinner is at my mother's and she gets even more snow out in ER than we do and we do NOT own a 4X4.

Okay.. too many shout outs, too many italics but I'm pretty excited. Christmas is coming. It's snowing. Wow.

The lights look gorgeous twinkling off the crisp white snow. I took tons of pictures today. Of snow, snow on trees, snow on houses, snow down the road, kids playing in snow. You name it. I even managed to get a photo of a snowflake. Hopefully, it will turn out. It was so cold that as it was snowing, the snowflakes would land on my sleeve and my gloves and stay absolutely perfect. I was mesmerized. I knew what snowflakes looked like, I mean we have drawings of them everywhere, but to see a real live snowflake and realize that it actually does look as amazing as they depict it is something. Part of me, I think, didn't actually believe that snowflakes really looked how people drawn them. Each one was different and so perfect, I wish I could have kept them. I guess when you're a kid, you just don't stop to look at the snowflakes. You too busy throwing them!

I will post some photos later (I'm currently blogging from work) when I get a chance to upload some from the camera. Hopefully, my photos will have done justice to how much snow there is and just how absolutely gorgeous it all. I love the crisp whiteness of the snow and how clean it makes everything look. (I hate the dirty snow clumps in the road.) Nothing is more breathtaking than a stretch of untouched snow glistening in the sunlight, or a stretch of trees, the ones with bare branches, all dressed up with snow. We have lights hanging in our fruit trees this year and so it looks amazing when we turn them on. It lights up the whole yard.

Anyways, back to work. Hopefully, wherever you are, you will have a White Christmas, if not in reality at least in your heart!

Merry Christmas,

Zeemaid
In the Mommy Trenches
P.S. photos have now been added.
P.S. favourite childhood snow memory..... I was elementary school age and it snowed pretty heavily one day. My mom, dad, brother and I all got dressed up in our snow gear (course it was snow pants then, just heavy clothes) and went for a winter nighttime walk. We walked over snow covered roads throwing snowballs along the way. We walked down to my school and sat on the swings. I can still remember my mom swinging away like a kid. I don't remember every detail but I just remember the warm sense of fun that we had being together as a family. Both my parents worked so moments like these weren't frequent. Then later my mom made us all hot chocolate to warm us up.
What's your favourite winter memory?
Zeemaid

Saturday, December 13, 2008

Let it Snow, let it snow, let it snow


"Oh, the weather outside is frightful, but the fire is so delightful...something, something, something... let it snow, let it snow."

Okay, I don't know all the words but you get my drift. That's our yard. It snowed yesterday but by evening it was gone. It started again this afternoon and now our yard looks like this. I LOVE the snow. LOVE LOVE LOVE it. Everyone else... they HATE it. It's so beautiful. It's peaceful, it's serene, it's hours of entertainment for the kids. I just don't like to drive in it. I think I'm okay, it's just the other crazies you have to worry about. HAH! Seriously we get snow so rarely where I live that it just about causes people to go into a panic when the first flakes start to fall. Our employees call us up asking to close the store cause it's OMgoodness... SNOWING..... da da da daaaaa.... Yeah. We're lucky to get 5 inches.

So my beautiful darlings will have the thrill of a snow day tomorrow. I'm looking forward to it because it will be O's first experience playing in the snow. He missed out on the fun on Friday. I'm looking forward to getting him all bundled p into his snow suit and seeing him make snow angels. I just love all those firsts, seeing their little faces light up when they learn about something new.

Then we get to all come in and warm up with a nice cup of hot cocoa. E is already well trained. As soon as we come in from anything remotely cold activity, she asks for hot cocoa. I think her daddy's responsible for that. After all, he is the one that got her started on having to sit in front of the fire place after a bath to get warmed up and most recently he started warming up their towels in the dryer while they're having their bath. What a great dad, huh? What's a little pampering now and then. It's those little extra things that let them know we love them. Setting down routines and traditions are wonderful too. Some of my best childhood memories involve small little traditions like these so hopefully, we are paving the way for some fond memories for our children.

Downside is with the snow, if it keeps up I won't be able to get into the City to do Christmas shopping tomorrow. Always next week.

Cheers,


Zeemaid

In the Mommy Trenches

Friday, December 12, 2008

A Day at School


Well, today was a parent helper day at E's school. I managed to arrange with upstairs Nana to look after J and O so I could help out. I wasn't sure what to expect or how many other parents would make it. Let's face it, in this day and age so many families need both parents to work. It ended up pretty good though. Mrs. D wanted 10, we managed to have eight parents, 2 dads and 6 moms. So with 18 kids in the class it was a pretty good parent to kid ratio.

Oh, I forgot to mention what we were making. Gingerbread houses, er that is Graham Cracker house. It's amazing the things that teachers come up with. We basically took graham crackers and with royal icing stuck them to the side of a 250 ml milk carton. It worked perfect. The kids loved it and even the parents loved it. Amazingly enough the kids actually were pretty good about not eating the candy or the icing. Sure, I saw a few take a secret lick of their fingers and the odd sneak of a candy but over all they were pretty good.

We were asked to bring candy to decorate the houses. Well I think everyone was worried about not bringing enough because we had waaaaaaay too much. So it was pretty much a free for all the kids to see how much candy they could actually stick to their houses and when they were covered fell to actually decorating the paper plate it was on. I think, in their secret little hearts, they were probably thinking how they were going to get to eat all that candy at home. I have to admit I was eyeing some of those candies myself. One parent actually sent candy cane stripped hershey kisses. hoo boy.

It was great though. I actually got to meet a few of E's school mates and learn some of their names. You sure get to see how different the kids are. Some go right to it and decorate like mad little hatters, others are more like turtles, slow and steady.

I'll have to take a photo of her house and post it. Unless they've all eaten it while I'm at work. Since it's E's, she's quite free with giving out the candy on it. *L* Since I don't like gingerbread, these graham cracker houses look very yummy to me. Have you ever noticed that graham wafer crackers smell really good. They taste good too but not as good as they smell.

Anyways, it was a nice day. To top it off it snowed around lunch time and it was amazing to see how excited the kids get. As soon as enough snow was on the ground they were outside like a shot. The sad thing was O was having his nap so he never got to go out. Now it's raining and so no snow tomorrow. I would have liked to have taken his picture in the snow. Last year he was just a baby still. Sigh.. they grow up so fast. I looked at his Christmas photo last year and he was only 7 months old. I couldn't believe it. He's so big now I was thinking that had to be from 2 years ago but do the math. He's 19 months now but he seems very advanced for his age. Probably because of his 2 big sisters.
My one peeve of the day. E has a new snowsuit. It was on sale but still a splurge. So it's nice right. Nice enough that you almost, I said almost, don't want the kid to wear it because it will get dirty right. Course that's ridiculous why else do we buy them clothes? (But I'm sure you know what I mean) So she wears her snowpants for the first time in the snow. Does she just stick to playing in the snow? Oh no. Not my kids. She decides to go under the deck stairs and scrounge around on the gravel there and get thoroughly muddy, her pants and her gloves. Course the poor kid got the lecture. Mom spent good money to buy blah blah blah. Stupid really. Kids should be able to play. It's a good thing they aren't hung up on getting dirty or they'd have no fun at all. Fortunately, I threw her pants in the washer right away, threw every stain remover I had at it and it all came out clean.
That's all for now.
Cheers,
Zeemaid
In the Mommy Trenches

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Are We Having Fun Yet?


E had her first Christmas concert yesterday. I have a feeling that my little star is destined for the stage one day. I know, I know, most parents feel their kids are talent and special. While I'm not certain how talented E is, she does have enthusiasm by the gallon.

Her kindergarten class sang Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer. What's amazing is that E has never memorized a song in her life. Twinkle Twinkle little something something.. that's my E. But she managed, somehow, to learn Rudolph. I think it's mostly due to the amazing work of her teacher, Mrs. D. She loves to practice and would belt Rudolph anytime, anywhere. So when it comes Christmas concert time, I dress my little concerto up in a lovely new Christmas dress her Nana had made for her, did her hair and sent her off to her class while Nana and I make way to the gymnasium to find seats.

Now I wasn't sure what I was expecting..well that's not true. I was expecting the concert to be boring listening to children stumble their way through the standard old routines. I was pleasantly surprised when the Choir began to sing. Firstly, I was surprised by how well they sang and secondly I was surprised to learn that the Elementary school even had a choir. They didn't even have a proper stage.

So it was sweet to listen to them and they actually sung Carols we really hadn't heard before. It is a little sad though to see how much effort the school system has to go through to make sure that there is no references to Christ at all.

Then finally it was my tikes turn to sing. I see her teacher and then her class march up to the platform and they lined up to sing. Well, where was E? Where was my little princess all dolled up in her pretty dress? Did they forget her in the classroom? No, the fat pudgy one at the end of the line dressed up in a red suit with a beard was E. My mom and I howled. She was adorable. That's my E. Striving at all times to be different. She wasn't content to just wear reindeer antlers. No, not E. If there's dress up involved, she's your man er gal.

Apparently when the teacher brought out the costume, E raised her hand enthusiastically. She wanted to be Santa. She was the taller and plus.. dropping her voice... she can speak really low... Ho ho Ho. Well the teacher about cracked up. So E was Santa. So much for her pretty dress but she had fun with a capital F.

So what that she likes to sing louder than everyone else. So what if she doesn't get all the words right. She has enthusiasm galore and sometimes that's all it takes. So like I said, I can easily picture her headed for the stage one day. Most likely... as a comedian.


Cheers,

Zeemaid
In the Mommy Trenches

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Are We Done Yet?


*Content warning: description of labour/delivery. Not for the faint of heart *L*

Are we done yet. I refer, of course, to having children. I chuckle as I type this. A month ago I was adamant that we were done. Finito. While I enjoyed being pregnant, I dreaded each delivery.

The last was the worst. My son was 12 pounds when he was born and yes I delivered him "naturally", screaming all the way. When I was initially in labour, sweat broke out on my lip and the nurse actually said to me, "you poor thing, trouble is, you know what's coming". Not only that, my blood pressure had been spiking and I had all the tell tale signs of First syndrome. Something very dangerous to both the baby and myself. Of course, they never keep you fully drugged either. I had an epi with the first which actually caused me to relax so my labour could progress but when it wore off..... *bleep* and my 2nd, I was too late. My husband figured I had a ways to go so he drove SLOW. Can you believe it? He's been apologizing to me ever since.

But the third... well that one was a kicker. Kicker pain that is. They'd let the epi wear off and then I knew it'd be another 20 or so minutes before the anesthesiologist would get there. (that's how it works in our hospital). O wouldn't turn and so the doctor said he'd give me more drugs and get an obstetrician in to help turn the baby etc. He left to make the calls when the nurse showed me a different breathing technique. Well I tried it and next thing you O turned and he was coming.

Bad thing was, he got stuck. They had me flipped five ways from Sunday and compressed so I couldn't breathe as they tried to manually force me to continue to push him out. Dr. B was all set to break little O's shoulder to get him out when he finally did come out. But he was so blue. I remember looking at my mom and K and seeing tears run down their faces while I'm struggling to catch my breath. What's wrong, I asked. My husband would wipe his tears and smile at me saying nothing honey, push. What would you think at that? I thought the worst... that my baby was stillborn.

Fortunately, he wasn't. He was mostly blue because of how much bruising he had undergone from being stuck and my strong contractions. He was a little short of oxygen but tests later showed that he still had enough. He ended having to stay in the nursery and had a heart murmur. His shoulder wasn't broken but he was unable to move one arm. Fortunately that resolved itself within 2 weeks. My son is now 18 months old and very very healthy but it still brings tears to my eyes when I think of it.

Phew what a long tale to make a point but I think it gives a clearer picture of why we were pretty much done having kids. That and my mom would probably have a great big cow if we had another one. She made no bones about her opinions on that front. Don't get me wrong, she loves my kids and me for that matter, she just doesn't think we should add to our stress etc.

Not that that would greatly deter us if we were set on having more... Although I do have a complicated relationship with my mom and still at 37 try and seek her approval. ARGHHH.

Anyways to get back to what I was saying. I've been having troubles with my cycles and this last one I've figured out I'm on like day 47. So that's pretty long right. I've had long cycles before but not that long. The only thing is that I know K and I have been very careful so I pretty much knew that the chance of me being pregnant was Zero. Still, it niggles at you. I told K and he thought immediately that I was joking. So several days go by. Still no period. Finally, I make him buy me a test. Turns out negative... like I thought but I have to admit I was disappointed. Before I even said anything, K looked at the test and said "it's negative, eh? That's disappointing." Well, you could have floored me. Turns out he had been thinking of it in a positive light. Maybe we'd get a brother for O. He just was more worried about my health with it etc.

Crazy,eh? Especially when we keep saying to ourselves that we are almost there, you know past the difficult baby years. We're almost done with diapers, sleepless nights, terrible twos, being tied down by nap times.

So I just don't know. Maybe if I can get my blood pressure in check, lose some weight, just maybe we might try again after O's 2. Wow. What an idea. It's either that or our close friends have to have a baby (You know who you are LC & KC) and it will be out of my system for good because I'll get to cuddle theirs. Let's cross our fingers on that one.

How many do you want?

Cheers,

Zeemaid
In the Mommy Trenches

Monday, December 8, 2008

So Much to Talk About

Ever have one of those days? There is just too much going on, too many things you could talk about.


It's been like that for me for the past couple of days. I've just been too busy to get online and post anything. Kid's will do that to you... keep you busy.


The hottest topic, here in Canada at least, is the NDP and Liberals forming a Coalition supported by Bloc Quebecois. Now I don't care who you voted for. Last I looked, we live in a Democracy. The majority of Canadians voted in the Conservatives just this past October so there should be no way that the opposition parties should be able to form a coalition to force the Prime Minister to step down. Why? Because they've lost confidence in Harper. Why? Because we're supposedly headed for the worst recession in years and Harper is doing nothing to help alleviate it.

First of, just because the U.S. is having problems doesn't mean that we will. Weeks before and after the Federal Election I have heard economists say that Canada is doing just fine. Our banks were stricter in their guidelines and practices etc.. so we won't see a lot of the same bankruptcy issues going on like in the U.S. That yes, there will be a fall out from the U.S. having difficulties but Canada's economy is strong. Now we have Stephane Dione saying economists are afraid for our country etc and is trying to stir up fear in Canadians. That guy is so boring to listen to talk to.

I agree that there may be a time when such a coalition is necessary, but I would say this is not it. #1, we just voted in the federal election. #2: they've barely given the new gov't a chance to settle in and get to work before they start in the whole no confidence thing.

I also don't understand who two separate parties, with different ideals and platforms could possible unite. How would they work it....NDP gets to bring in x amount of policies in return for the Liberals bringing in x amount of policies? Makes no sense to me.

The kicker is that even celebrities from the U.S. are putting their two bits in. Specifically, Donald Sutherland. I saw him on the news and he said they were successful in getting rid of Bush so hopefully Canada will do the same with our prime minister. Right, they got rid of Bush. I seem to recall that Bush has served two terms and was not "gotten rid of".

As you can probably tell from this post, I'm not that up on politics but obviously I do have an opinion. I think you have to weed through all the crap and get back to the basics. It's not like Harper has been caught doing something illegal.

My two cents,

Cheers,

Zeemaid

*P.S. This post is not meant to reflect negatively on the U.S. in any way and I can sincerely say that I feel for those of you who are struggling financially etc. right now because of the recession.

Thursday, December 4, 2008

I Shrug My Shoulders


I shrug my shoulders. So what. Everyone shrugs their shoulders, I know. For me though it's one of those little things I do when I'm annoyed at my husband. It's not a silent up yours or even a "whatever". It's a I'm annoyed but I really shouldn't be or I'm annoyed but this is it's not worth fighting about so I'm gonna keep my mouth shut kind of shrug. Wow. Who knew we had so much in our body language, right?
It could be a "whatever or up yours" kinda shrug but it's not. It's just what I do instead of saying all those things you really shouldn't say. Kind of like counting to 10 before you open your mouth and put your big ol size 10's in it. Now I have heard of couples that drive each other crazy with these little quirks and instantly get all fired up when they see their spouse do it but I don't think K even realizes that I do this. If he does, he has enough tact to just let it go. (He does fire up at eye rolling though. How many times have you had to say "What.. I wasn't rolling my eyes, I just happened to glance up that's all" *L*)

What do you do when you're annoyed? Do you just let him have it? Is he happy? Are you happy?

Now I am all for justice. I hate to lose an argument when I know I'm right and I mean when I am actually right not just think I'm right. If I have the facts in hand, I want people to know the truth. I want to be vindicated. Course that's not my job. That is actually God's job. But darn it, I want vindication now. And that goes doubly so for my husband.

However, it doesn't always feel good winning. Especially when it's at the cost of a lot of arguing with your spouse. He may bow down and say I'm right but what have I really accomplished? Have I not perhaps done more damage by pushing the issue? I'm not saying that you have to lay down and let him walk all over you, stroke his ego 24/7 etc. Not at all, but is it really worth arguing over who does more housework, who ate the last piece of pie, who made the bed last, who does more laundry, care for the children more, has a harder time of it... etc. etc. etc. Does it really matter, are we not a team working together towards one common goal?

Recently I gained a valuable tip on re-reading Little Women. Marmee was trying to help Jo with her temper and shared how she, herself, is angry every day of her life. What she would do was close her mouth firmly and even sometimes just leave the room for a minute until she was over it. I liked this idea for I am often angry with my children. It served as a reminder to me that we as the adults are to check our emotions. We're so caught up with ourselves and our feelings these days that we forget that it's not healthy to our children to just let it all out all the time. We need to learn to deal with emotions properly in order to properly teach our children how to deal with them.

So, when I'm angry it has helped for me to remember this. Pressing my lips together actually does help to remind me that I need to have patience and stops me from being quick to anger.

The other tip I learned from this book was to be the first to apologize. If he won't do it, don't wait. Don't let resentment and bitterness brew between you. Be the first to apologize. More often than not, both parties were in the wrong. By doing this you are helping smooth the way to better communication and even a better marriage. How often have you said sorry and he's immediately backed down and apologized himself?

This post does not in any way advocate men's dominance over women etc. They are actually... dare I call them principles (?) that you can lay down in any relationship that you may have. This world would be a better place if people would relax and try to get along more.

So, I shrug. What do you do?

Cheers

Zeemaid

** to any one reading this... sorry if I come off preachy in this. I really tried not to but I wanted to put my thoughts to paper so to speak and am not sure how much sense I'm making.***

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

I'm still waiting



I'm still waiting for O to settle down and get back into his regular sleep pattern. It will be almost two weeks since he's started this sleep issue and no amount of tactics can seem to mend the problem. We had one successful night on Sunday. K had no problem putting him down and when we awoke at 7:30 a.m. we were both high fivin each other that he'd actually slept the entire night.

So we were pretty much counting on a repeat performance on Monday. Nope. It took several attempts to just get him down and then, of course, he woke up screaming during the most intense part of a movie we were trying to watch. So, I finally had to tell K and our friends to go ahead and finish the movie without me because I knew that it was going to take awhile. I ended up sitting in his room for an hour, trying not to fall asleep, before I could make an exit. Then at 4 a.m. I ended up sleeping in the rocker in his room for the rest of the night.

Thanks to those with the suggestions and/or comments. While previously, I hadn't thought he was having night terrors, last night he definitely was having one. I couldn't settle him down for at least 10 minutes. I'm not sure if he knew me because he did let me hold him he just wouldn't stop crying and wouldn't even take a bottle. The second time he woke up was purely separation anxiety. He wants to know we are there. No idea where this is coming from. He has from birth been the easiest baby to put to sleep. I have worked evenings since he was about 7 months old so that's nothing new. The only new thing is that I have recently cut back one night a week and suddenly I'm home an extra night each week.

We did have him babysat once by a family friend whereas usually he's babysat by nanas and papas. Oh and upstairs Nana and Papa went to Vancouver a week ago. Which does sort of coincide with them going. He was difficult to put to bed the night before they left but slept through. He hasn't slept through since. Fortunately, they are coming home tonight.

UPDATE: I just called home and Nana and Papa had just gone upstairs. O didn't have much to do with them at all. Which means, according to my sixth sense mommy knowledge, he's mad at them for being gone so long. Normally he'd be all over Papa. He's definitely a "papa boy".

I remember when I went away for 2 weeks when my nephew was a baby he was so mad at me he wouldn't look at me the whole evening I got back. I was crushed because he was my favourite little guy.

So hopefully now that he's seen them, maybe it will help his sleep. I don't know. I'm grasping at straws at this point. As you can imagine, particularly from my last post, that we are running the entire gamet of the rollercoaster of emotions. I'm getting a little better, more resigned to just toughing it out. If I have to, I'll sleep on his floor. At least I'm getting some sleep. So even though I didn't get to bed until after 12:00, slept from 4 to 6:30 in a rocker and have been managing the whole show at home, taking kids to school (walking btw), picking them up and now am at work, I am still managing to end my day off positively.

At this point... that's a good thing, no that's a ruddy miracle.

Cheers,

Zeemaid

Another note from In the Mommy Trenches

*I "borrowed" this photo from mommy at my mommy's place photostreatm. http://flickr.com/photos/58386103@N00/2469359261/ I'm not sure what the whole etiquette thing is for borrowing photos etc. I try not to borrow things that people are using in their blogs etc because hey, let's try and be a little original here but sometimes it's just hard to find something that fits. So hopefully, no one out there is annoyed and if they are, let me know and I will gladly remove it. I'd like to get one of those mugs though and this t-shirt from www.CafePress.ca
although I think it should say... I'm not stupid, just Sleep Deprived *L*

Thursday, November 27, 2008

A Dark Day

I lost my temper. Let me just get that out of the way as I am sitting here, at work, filled with remorse. I am sure I can find many excuses for doing so. I'm sleep deprived, O would still not sleep through the night. I was stressed at the moment.. the hood fan going, O crying and pushing at me as I am trying to dish out supper and prevent him from burning himself on the oven, E is crying, kicking and screaming and thrashing the walls on the stairway in her time out spot. I disagreed with K about the time out, thought he was being ridiculous about it. He had just literally walked in the door and already he's losing it and handing out time outs. Now, when I'm trying to get dinner on the table so I can go to work after. Plus, that kind of whiny crying makes me go crazy. I want to pull my hair out.

But the fact remains I, the adult, lost it. Said some things I shouldn't have to both my child and my husband. My husband walked out, he was so mad. Of course, he didn't go far, just went to the shop and sorted out the recycling but I was still a little worried but more still mad. Dinner didn't end up being served by me (I was so close to dumping the entire meal in the garbage, fortunately maturity prevailed). O sensed the tension and suddenly mommy was the only one that would do and it didn't include sitting at the table. That suited me, I grabbed his bottle and cuddled him on the couch till he was satisfied. He kept looking at me as to make sure I was still there. Not sure why but I guess kids are just more in tune with things that you think.

So stubborn me didn't eat supper and left as soon as it was my time to go with a quick goodbye. Part of me is still mad but part of me, the bigger part, knows that sometimes you have to just suck it up and get over it. I know when I go home my husband will have forgotten all about it while I may still be a little resentful.

Yet another difference between men and women. Women have minds like a microchip, we remember every little thing that goes on, every look, every word that was said. Men, forget everything and quite honestly most of the time have no clue as to what you are talking about. "Gee honey, what argument did we have about the laundry?" This is actually a good thing. You see K will have gotten over the fight and put it from his mind but me, 5 hours later will still be simmering about the "injustice of it all". Yeah, yeah, a little over dramatic but that's us women, drama, drama, drama.

That doesn't mean that I don't wish it all undone. Can't help but think what a sucky way for K to come home and have the whole house explode around him. We're supposed to be on the same team but sometimes it's just hard for us moms to step back and let the dad parent. K backs me up every time and even though he was extremely pissed at me, he still had E come and apologize to me for her behaviour on the stairs. So kudos to him for that.

One thing I have learned in the past 10 years of marriage and 5 plus years of parenting, is that you have to forgive, forget and get back on that horse and keep on working at it. I am not the most patient person in the world, as can be testified by this post today, but I do see the fault and I am trying to get the better of it. Some days are just better than others and I can thankfully say that these days, like today, are getting less.

So tomorrow, I will dust myself off and get back in the saddle. Thank God, my kids and husband love me and are very forgiving.

Zeemaid
In the mommy trenches

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Just When You Think You've Got It Figured Out.

Just when you think you have it all figured out, life throws you a curve ball. O, normally a dream baby sleeper, has suddenly decided he doesn't want to sleep by himself. He has been for almost a week now, subjecting us to daily night terrors of screaming, getting up almost every 2 hours and not going down easy at all. We took him to the doctor's thinking he must be sick. Nope. As the doctor said, there is no easy solution.

However, last night K found a giant hive on his leg and today when he got up from his nap he had two massive hives on the backs of his calves. We took him back to the doctor's and he says either he's having an allergic reaction or he has something viral causing it. We are hoping that this, whatever it is, is causing the night time problems. We are about to go batty because neither of us is getting uninterrupted sleep. I have done some research online and have found it a re-occuring theme for 18 month olds. The suggestions (which are few and far between) range from letting them cry it out to putting them into a big kid bed.

Yeah I can just picture that, putting O in big kid bed and then having to deal with him getting up a hundred times. And crying it out doesn't work with him, he cries so hard he pukes. We've had to change his sheets 3x in one night. YUCK!!!

We've given him some antihistimine tonight and while it was difficult putting him down, he is now asleep and hopefully stays asleep.

I seem to recall when J went through this at 18 months. Our solution at that time was to put E in her room. They now share a room. This won't work for O because J wouldn't be content to stay in her bed while E was somewhere else. She doesn't like to miss out on all the fun.

It just makes life more difficult having to stumble around through it sleep deprived. It does not make for a patient mommy I can tell you that. I just about lost it yesterday afternoon when E came and told me she had lost her tooth. I had let her take it on Monday to class. She took good care of it but I, got busy, and forgot to take it out of her backpack. So yesterday, she took it out at school and was playing with it. Somehow she lost it. I cried and cried and cried. I was so upset. It was her first tooth. It doesn't look like we will be able to find it either. K was pretty upset too.

Well, we will see what happens and see if I ever get some sleep.

Cheers,

Zeemaid
In the Mommy Trenches

Friday, November 21, 2008

Favourites?


Do you have a favourite child? I don't. Or, at least I don't think I do. Subjectively, I can look at all 3 of my children and feel that I love them all equally.


Having said that, I find so often that I cater to E (the oldest) first. To clarify, she's often the one that gets first pick whether it's snack, movies or even what colour of cup she drinks from. If we have two cups and one is pink, I usually give her the pink one. Why is that? Is it because I've been with her 2.5 years longer than J and so I'm more in tune with her wants, likes and dislikes more? I don't know. It's either that or I know she will kick up the biggest stink if she gets thwarted. Not to say E gets her own way all the time. Since I am aware of it, I do try and make sure I'm being fair to J. (O's not really on the radar for this yet because a) he's a boy and b) he's still fairly little).

Take J's birthday for example. Her birthday is coming up soon. We have been having the hardest time shopping for a present. What does she want? She's turning 3 and so all we've actually heard her say is she wants one of those small laptop type computers. Fine. That's easy. But what else? We walked down the toy aisles rejecting idea after idea because the toy would be so cool that E would want one to and we could foresee sharing issues. In other words, E would take over. How stupid is that? J can't get a cool toy because of E? For Christmas, we have literally bought two of everything.


So finally, we decided to buy her a dollhouse for her birthday. I'm realizing that even this is a compromise. It's a cool toy but it's one that's obviously going to be shared between the girls. Lucky O will never this problem. Of course, lots of boy toys are pretty cool too but I can tell you we probably will never not buy him something because of his sisters.


Is this playing favourites?

In analyzing this little phenomenon, I have come to the realization that up until J turned 2 and a half, she didn't have a preference. She has now found her little voice and is finally speaking up and letting me know what she wants. Up until this point, it was easy to cater to E because J just didn't care if she got the blue or the pink cup. I think supernanny would call that "accidental parenting". You know where you set up a precedent that you really didn't mean to and now have to fix. Yii. Poor E, yet something else she will have to adjust to.

Cheers,

Zeemaid
In the Mommy Trenches

All I want for Christmas... is my two front teeth?

E came to me today utterly excited. "Mommy, Mommy, I have a loose toof". My first instinct was to ask whether she had bumped her mouth on anything as all three of them had been creating a racket on the stairs. I checked out her mouth and yup, it was loose alright. My baby girl is on her way to loosing her first tooth. Tears instantly sprung to my eyes as I gave her a big hug and told her in a somewhat watery voice.. "how exciting, you're losing your very first tooth." She quickly agreed with me and excitedly spent the next ten minutes by my side as I cooked supper telling me about her day and how she first discovered it was loose at school.

It was a lovely moment. I was able to continue my supper preparations and still spend a few minutes alone with my girl. Something we do not get to do very often anymore since J stopped her afternoon naps. It was sweet to see how excited she was over losing a tooth. Her first thoughts, of course, was sharing this with daddy when he got home and sure enough as soon as he walked through the door she told him. Daddy got down on one knee so he'd be at her level and still with his bags in his hands, coat on and the door still open behind him, he checked out her tooth. He congratulated her, gave her a big hug and as our eyes met over her head he made a sad face at me. I tell you it brought tears to my eyes again. How silly am I? I never cried when I dropped her off at kindergarten for the first time, yet I cry over her first loose tooth?

It's such a big milestone. Symbolising the advent from babyhood into childhood. All too soon we will be facing many more of those milestones. I just pray that I will be able to face each one with grace and wisdom.

Will I cry when J gets her first loose tooth. Maybe, maybe not. I love all my children with all my heart but there is a special bond with the first one. They are after all the only child you will give birth to that you get to have that one on one, 24 hours a day, seven days a week kind of time together.

Cheers,

Zeemaid
In the Mommy Trenches

P.S. Of course, E is all excited about a visit from the tooth fairy. How on earth did she figure out so quickly that you get a present from the tooth fairy. Do they absorb this stuff by osmosis?

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Facebook and Reunions


FACEBOOK. I have always considered myself to be a fairly technological gal. When the internet first made a big splash in the 90's, I bought myself a computer and promptly learned all the ins and outs of chatting online. It was great. Suddenly I was a confident and witty conversationalist. What a perfect setting for those of us that sometimes put out foot in our mouths. Until online chatting went RT, we actually got a chance to think about what we were going to say before hitting that send button.

Having said that, I got married and in my view marriage and chatting online DO NOT go hand in hand. Why else do men and women chat online in chatrooms? To meet members of the opposite sex! Or not opposite as the case may be. There is always the exception of gamers etc... who are online gaming. I went online to chat with guys. Yeah, I made some great girl friends online but primary interest was hey.. the guys. I got married, there was no reason for me to chat online.

Then came children. That lengthy online pregnancy journal that was updated almost daily soon was only updated once a week, then once a month... you get the picture. Life is just too busy to keep up online.

So when I finally can lift my head up from all the chaos, I am dazed by all the new rages. Facebook, Twitter, Flickr, RSS feeds... say what? That facebook stuff is not for me, I say. I'm content to just be blissfully unaware of it and continue my shallow little internet life. Not too deep, just on the surface of technology. Who would I facebook anyways? My friends and family are all around me.

Then the rumours of the next high school reunion start and my sis tells me that her husband's entire reunion was planned online through Facebook. I'll admit I'm curious. I don't even really want to go to the next reunion but I sign up anyways just to see who's on there. So I set my profile, carefully joining the appropriate groups just so I'm sure to be seen. I see a few people from school but, (and here's the kicker) I don't even request any friends. I sit back and wait to see if anybody notices me and if any of them requests me as a friend. There is very little action at first and then one by one I start to get more and more friend requests. Unfortunately, the first was from a brother of a friend and I did NOT want him on my list but what can I do, I don't want to offend the guy.

The funny thing is.. that out of 14 friend requests only ONE sent me a personal message. I started get these friend requests and I thought hey cool but then there was no conversation, no how's it going, haven't seen you in years type thing. Nothing. Not only that, I had one who I know did not like me in school (I dated his friend) and he sent me a friend request. What's up with that? My husband says, "honey, it's been almost 20 years." Yeah, I know but if you didn't like me then would you suddenly develop fond memories of me now? I don't think so. I said yes.

I think it's the most bizarrest thing that people would WANT to add me to their friend list but not actually connect with me. Does that make sense to you? It doesn't to me. You could say, why don't I send messages myself and you'd be right. I could do that but this started out as a little experiment. You see it's been 19 years since high school. I went to the 10th and had an okay time but I just couldn't seem to connect with anyone.

Part of the reason for this was that I had spent my grade 11 year in Europe and when I came back I had changed a lot and found it difficult to relate to my old friends. Add to this that my husband worked for one of my old friend's husband and had taken them to labour relations over a dispute. By the time the reunion happened, I had just gotten married and she apparently had not gotten over it. So the whole click of friends I used to hang out with, gave me a somewhat cold shoulder.

There is like maybe one person I actually see on a somewhat regular basis (if you can call every couple of months so, regular) and for the rest I could really care less. I felt saddened by this thought because I know so many other people that look forward to seeing their old friends. If someone from school actually tried to connect with me, then it might actually refresh my memory a little and make me want to go.

At the moment, I am leaning towards going but I'm still not ready to commit. Should I go?


Zeemaid
In the Mommy Trenches

Friday, November 14, 2008

Romance and Passion


I haven't had much of a chance lately to work on my story. I did pull up a page the other day and liked what I had read. It's suprising, isn't it, that we are own worst critics. When I am writing I struggle over every sentence. I know what my story should be about I just falter in getting it down line by line. I keep searching for a better more clever way of saying what is quite often just the mundane. Yet, when I look back at it after some time away, I realize that it's not bad writing. I would almost not recognize that those words came from me.

Sometimes though, I feel that I should give up my reading. If I put as much time into my writing as I do my reading, I'd be published by now. I LOVE to read. I am passionate about reading and many days if it wasn't for reading, I don't think I'd make it through these mommy days sane. My husband is always teasing me about how much I read. Sometimes, I can finish a novel in two or three days. No, my kids are not neglected but sometimes my housework is. I just am creative in how I get my breaks. When we are having quiet time and my daughter picks a movie, I read. When I'm stirring soup in the pot, I read. When I'm going potty.... I read. *L*

I will be very sad the day that my two youngest stop napping because it will probably be the end of afternoon tea and a book. Occasionally, I do feel that this is a problem in my life yet when you are so ingrained in these kinds of habits, it's hard to imagine giving them up. I digress though.

The reason why I thought maybe I should stop reading was that sometimes you get caught up in other people's stories that it's hard to think of your own. Kind of like watching too much t.v. makes your imagination rusty. I may actually be curbing the creative flow in me. Do you think that could be true? I wonder.

The other thing about reading that is starting to bug me is the sex. Don't get me wrong, I have a wonderful sex life with my husband (yes, honey you can gloat) and I'm definitely not disappointed in that area. It's just that sex in novels are so over the top. We're talking the average novels here, too like Nora Roberts etc. When I was younger I would read harlequins and dream of the day when a man would passionately pull me into his arms and devour me.

Now almost 10 years married, the passion is actually better than it ever was in the beginning, but there is no way my husband is ever going to throw me over his shoulder and stride off into the bedroom and ravish me. I'd feel silly and more likely to be concerned about his back. Neither is he going to let's say throw me over the "edge" with just one touch. (Sorry Honey).

If that happens in your relationship then I say WOW, you go girl! But from what I gather from most women I know, they don't experience that kind of romp in the hay. Many women lead very satisfied sex lives but do they really live it romance novel style? (If you do, let me know)

Do we really need these vivid sex scenes? Does it not make your life seem somewhat inadequate? (Who really does it 5 times a night?) Can your man really live up to the standards set in these novels? So why is it that we feel we need to read this stuff or have it written for us in this way. Is it just that the writer is using creative license in putting more colour and feeling into it? You tell me?

For me, I want the romance of it, the wining and dining, the two lovers meeting, overcoming the obstacles together and finally getting together. I really don't care if they wait till the last page to have sex. All I want is to witness their first kiss, that's romantic in my book. Save the rest of it for the bedroom, their bedroom. The one we're not usually invited in. I rather go live my own sex life thank you very much.

Cheers,


Zeemaid

In the Mommy Trenches
***BTW the picture I used in this post is from a book called "Claiming the Highlander" I couldn't figure out who the author of the novel is but I "borrowed" the picture from.. www aromancebook.us Thanks.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Just My Opinion


We had dinner with friends the other day, KC and LC. It was a lovely dinner btw and it was very nice when after we put the kids to bed we got to sit around and talk. We all have some history together that goes back at least 15 years. So it was fun reminiscing some of the events in our lives. Sometimes when we get together we focus on the negative and only the negative things that have happened. However, while we did touch on the negative, we did a lot of remembering of some pretty funny stuff that happened. (you had to have been there). So it was nice. Nothing like good friends to share with.

Anyways, I digress. We had gotten talking and I had mentioned some opinions I had regarding a couple of kids movies we had seen lately. It was then that LC said maybe I should do movie reviews. What a great idea. I have owned a video store for the past five years and it never occurred to me to review movies before. Just the idea of having to review movies every week was overwhelming. But why not just kid or family movies.

So that's what I'm doing. I've started up a new blog and I'm pretty excited about it. I've been trying to get in as many reviews as I can so if people do read it, they have more than just one film to check out.

It's as difficult as I thought it would be. Not only do I have to come up with a plot synopsis (I do try not to copy the back of the DVD case) but you also have to come up with interesting descriptive phrases to describe the movie. By my third review I felt like I was being very redundant. My kids, I am sure, are not thrilled with mommy as I tried to write my reviews up today. Just because they look like they are occupied with their toys doesn't mean that I can possibly take some time to myself. It's the old nobody needs mom until she gets on the phone trick!

If anything its an exercise in putting my thoughts down on paper (or screen) of what I thought about it. I am sure it's good practice for when I eventually do get to write my great Canadian novel. You just never know.

BTW LC managed to get me a copy of some novel writing software (THANK YOU SO MUCH) so hopefully, I will get the time and a chance to use it.

Tomorrow is back to school. We just had a blissful four day weekend. You know I didn't realize how much I missed not having get up and be somewhere in the morning. These last two days have been just lovely. I even managed to sleep in a little because the kids were busy playing this a.m. So I just know that tomorrow is going to be difficult. With all the rain we've been having I've been driving but I feel bad because there's this single mom down the road without wheels and she has no choice but to walk. I give her a ride when I can but between her kids and my kids, we don't all fit unless nana looks after two of mine. So I hope tomorrow is nice enough to walk so we can walk together.

Till I write again,

Zeemaid

"Just another day in the mommy trenches."


Monday, November 10, 2008

Halloween Is Over HURRAH!



I think only the parents of small children can truly appreciate how much we eagerly look forward to these fun holidays and just as eagerly breathe a sigh of relief when they are over.

First you spend the whole week explaining to them that "no, it's not halloween yet". You're still cheerful at this point, making Halloween decorations, gleefully letting them use sparkles on their bat crafts so they're more eerie, being charmed by how cute they look in their costumes.

We look for fun family activities to take them to so we're doing things as one big happy family. So we decide to forgo our usual hour long drive to go the pumpking mountain (which is really just a market with a mountain of pumpkins out front) and decide to take them to a local farm where you pick your own pumpkins. Sounds great. We show up early to beat the crowds. It was a rare sunny Saturday so it turns out we were a little too early as the kids had to wait for them to get themselves set up (even though we were there just a 1/2 hour after opening.) This is, of course, AFTER we've $30.00 to just get inside. Okay, so it's a farm and the kids got to look at the animals and got a pony ride but really, $30.00??????? I know a farmer has to make a living too but it was pretty hard for us to shell out that kind of money when that didn't even include the pumpkin. We had to pay another $4.00 per pumpkin for that privilege. On the other hand the kids did enjoy it and we did manage to pick out three relatively nice pumpkins.

The funny thing to note was the Pacific Produce truck that pulled up while we were there (this was, of course, while we were waiting for the wagon to take us to the patch) to deliver, and get this, a load of pumpkins. So we didn't even "really" pick the pumpkins. We just sorta picked them up out of the patch. *LOL* Okay, that's what the farmer's wife meant when she said that she was hoping some pumpkins would magically appear. Truth be told we had a weird spring and summer so nothing grew really well this year. But the irony was priceless.

So we made it through the week tempers in tact. We even made it through the big day to the evening with little trouble. The trouble arose,however, once we actually started trick or treating. Did you know you have to NAG your kids to go from house to house trick or treating? I mean aside from the usual reminders "what do you say.... thank you".... blah blah blah. I had to coerce, push, prod and all but pull my oldest to continue on to the next house.

Not that she didn't want to be doing this, she just had in her mind what house she wanted to go to. Now us parents, we like to do things all orderly. Let's go down this side of the street first, when we get to the corner we'll cross and then come back up. Sounds simple, Right? A good plan, right? Well not to a five year old who apparently wanted to go to the "trick house", which as we figured it out was on the other side of the street. We should have just gone across the road and gone there but oh, no, we had to stick to the PLAN. Because, of course, by the time we got to the "trick" house we found out that that was the house that sold this year and the "tricky" people no longer live there. BIG disappointment. So my kids really didn't end up with much candy at all. If we weren't looking for the "trick" house, then E would refuse to go to any houses that were "boring". Homes without decorations, just lights.

The cute thing was my son, O, who was a puppy this his first halloween, trick or treating that is. He really tried to say thank you and trick or treat in his baby voice so it was adorable. And J, after warming up at the first house, was pretty bold in going up to each door and saying her line. Too precious.

After all the fun, we put O to bed and left him with his Nana while we took the little ones up to a bonfire at my brother's. We did the whole fire works thing and everything. E had lots of fun because there were other little kids there. Poor J fell head first into her black mud hole. She was smeared with thick mud from head to toe. Her poor abby cadabby costume was covered. I had to strip her down to her leggings only to find that Ihad left the spare bag with clothes for them at home. So I ended up bundling her up and sitting with her for the rest of the evening. She was that SAD at getting her costume dirty.

The funny thing about my kids is that they are very much into routines. We rarely break them and keep them up late, honestly, it's too much of a treasure to have time to ourselves for us to mmiss their bedtimes. Given that we found out just how hard it is for them. It's going on 9:30 and my brother is lighting of fire works when E, the five year old, suddenly tells my mom that she wants mommy and to go home in her own bed. Wow. J thankfully went to Nana so I could take care of E. Well, no matter of coercion would work, I could not convince her to stay for five minutes longer. She didn't care about fire works, hot dogs or playing. She was tired, she was done in and that was it let's go home to bed. So we did. She fell asleep in the van and the first words out of her mouth when we got her inside was "where is my bed". AND no they did NOT sleep in the next day. If only.

All in all we had a pretty good halloween. I like to hope we learned a few things though. Like being flexible. You don't have to stick to the plan. If we had of deviated from the plan and gone to the trick house first, we might have had more fun (and gotten more candy ;)~ ). Life is what you make it after all.


How about you? Were your youngsters happy trick or treaters? Were you relieved when it was all behind you for another year?
Cheers from the trenches,

Zeemaid

Thursday, September 18, 2008

kindergarden... stressed already?


E started kindergarden last week. She's doing really well. No real problems going, pretty excited each day to be going to school. However, she's not making the transition from pre or should I say play school to real school very well. She has met a boy (yes at such a tender age too) who likes to play the "shark" game. Which mainly consists of one or more of the boys roaring like sharks (really do sharks roar?) and chase the rest of the kids. Something my daughter enjoys immensely. It's the highlight of her day. Getting her off of the shark high though is another thing.

The first day of the "shark game" she had a tantrum leaving. Crying, screaming, running away the whole nine yards. E was promptly escorted home. Well, maybe not so promptly, I had one mom holding O while I lost track of J completely trying to manouever my 50 pound 5 year old into a listening position and an upright lets walk back to the stroller position. No easy feat I assure you. I broke into a sweat and it was just as much from the exertion as it was from the embarassment factor. I have yet to see one other mom or dad having to deal with THEIR five year old's tantrum in the middle of the school field. Well E got the lecture of her life and informed that we would not be playing after school at the playground if that was how she was going to behave.

The next few times go just fine so I'm thinking great lesson learned. That is until today. I knew from her behaviour this a.m. that all was not going to be well in E world today. She was emotional and easily frustrated and staring the WAAHHH thing whenever we said no. I felt sorry for poor Mrs. D. today. On top of that, O sliced his thunb. He managed to get this little porcelain baby buggy off of his dresser, broke it and cut himself. It was a deep cut and it bled and bled and bled like a fawcett. We finally got him bandaged up but he was pretty teary for a while. So I elect to skip walking to school today, rang nana up to sit and drove E to school myself.

Pick up should have gone smoothly because it was just me and J but oh no, I had gotten into conversation with a mom about school pictures and E wanted to go play on the playground, said boy was already there. Well, I told her just a minute and she started to lose it. crying and acting up, her teacher saw and came over to talk to me. She basically stated that E was sweet and liked to be helpful but she argues a lot and doesn't transition well from different things to next task etc. Which I'm not surprised at. In the middle of this I still have E crying and asking to play, at which point I told her that she couldn't play anymore because of her behaviour. It was just as well because given that she couldn't wait 1 minute to go play there was no way she would have left easily today. It probably would have been worse, as it was I still had to firmly hold her hand and escort her to the van. Knowing that if I so much as let go, she'd bolt and run. Yes, I just love them when they're like this.

So............ I go home and have a good cry. I was totally embarrassed not to mention furious at her behaviour. I sat down and explained to her that playing on the schoolground is not what school was about etc. I don't know if she gets it but I hope she does.

It pretty much bothered me all day. I can't figure out why it is that she's behaving this why and what I can do to fix it or how I can handle it better. Talking it through (like the teacher suggests) doesn't help when she's in the middle of her fit. She can't rationalize. She tells me she can't help herself when she's like that.

I don't know. It bums me out because I don't want her to have a tough time at school and I know how hard kids can be. I don't want her to be labelled as the cry baby etc... or to lose friends because she won't share or is too bossy. There is only so much instruction you can give when it seems like they are not giving you 100%.

A lot of it stems from her being tired. When she gets tired she always is more emotional and more unreasonable. I don't know how to transition her when she's like that.

It doesn't help that when times are like this that K gets more negative. He then swears up and down she has a behavioural problem and needs counselling or something and everything I talk about is just how bad she ALWAYS is and how hard it is for him getting them to bed by himself etc when I know that he's had a good routine going. It seems like if he has a hard week or two then all of sudden it's been like that always........ very frustrating. I don't want to label my kid negatively and he's very much when it's bad it's always bad, when it's good, she's amazing.

I don't know........... any suggestions?

Thursday, August 28, 2008

What were we thinking?


We've just gotten back from a weeks worth of camping. No, pardon me 5 days worth. We only managed to survive 5 days in my parent's brand new travel trailer with water and electric hook-up. (So the microwave wouldn't work, something about 110 or 220 voltage, I don't know).

I'm getting a little a head of myself. We borrowed my parent's trailer, had it towed by my brother to a wonderful (albeit only visited via online website) little campsite on the beach. The site turned out to be the size of a postage stamp and the little 2 foot slope to the beach we were assured of turned out to be a two level 6 foot drop. So we had to be creative with parking our vehicle. Otherwise, the place was lovely. So we didn't sleep well, so E started throwing up again on the way there and remained sickish for the next 3 days. She didn't eat so she didn't have anything else to throw up. So she threw several hissy fits a day from her disruptive sleep and begged to go home each night to her own bed but was equally just as happy we were still camping in the morning. So O didn't like to stay with us and insisted on wandering off willy nilly entire time, us having to run like mad to make sure he didn't fall over the drop. So he screamed his little head off every time we tried to put him in the play pen. So I fell over a log (backwards) while holding my son, hurting my back, AGAIN. So, the firewood was wet and we couldn't get a decent enough fire to cook a hotdog the first night. So, the bathrooms smelled bad, really bad.

What we did have, was a wonderful sandy beach area where my kids loved to dig. Just around the corner was a gorgeous sandbar where O could run to his little heart's delight, wandering into shallow pools and hucking gobs of sand through the air. J seemed to grow up over night as she excitedly accompanied mommy to the bathroom and stayed outside the stall and checked things out and reported back to me intermittently of what she's discovered, suddenly dropping the mummy and daddyism for the more grown up mum and dad. E and J could play for an hour at a time in the driftwood fort someone had made just down the beach. Barbeque chicken never tasted so good as it did there. We went for walks to the store and savoured ice cream bars while we sat on the wooden swing overlooking the ocean. We had campfires, where my J was introduced to the glories of toasted marshmallows and as she solemnly told my husband the next day.. Dad, I just love the campfire!. As could be told by the remnant "goop" on her face and legs. Then, we managed the miracle of miracles and got all three down to sleep in a strange place and actually got to have grown up time by the fire. We even got to play scrabble a couple of times. Your's truly winning hands down. Of course, he says he won the first game (we didn't keep score that time).

And the bathrooms? They cleaned them 4 times a day. Turns out the smell must be from the well water. I've never been to a place that cleans their bathrooms 2x a day never mind 4 x.

So despite all the negatives, the headaches, I would have to say it was worth it. Life is always going to be somewhat uncomfortable but really it's only us grownups that realize it. The kids, it's water off their back. They are not even aware of it five minutes after it has passed. For them, they won't remember screaming at me because she wanted to stay five more minutes, they'll remember getting to play in the fort, run on the beach rescuing starfish and playing in the sand. Life would be a lot easier if we had more of their view of life.

Monday, August 18, 2008

Things are Looking UP

*** A post I had drafted August 18th but forgot to go back and publish. ****

Finally, we seem to be on the mend. We still have periodic explosions and puke fests but they are getting fewer and farther between. The main thing is they are happier and seem to have more energy. Now if only the poor parents could dredge up some more energy.



Unfortunately, my poor employee got the bug and phoned in sick yesterday. I knew she was really sick then because she's got very good work ethics. So I all but started to cry because there was no else to go in and my poor babies had been begging to go somewhere and we had already promised them a trip to the beach if it was nice.



In the end, we decided to open up late. After all it was Kidsfest weekend and how busy would it be in the morning? We debated on going to Kidsfest but it was kids kids and more kids and really only targeted to E and J. O would be stuck, miserable, in his stroller.


So we took the kids to the beach instead and had a great time. We found a quiet spot with lots of sand and the kids dug and ran to their hearts delight. E scampered in the waves, made a friend and they both spent an hour running up and down the beach "rescuing" poor starfish stranded by the tide.

You know you done good when we're walking back to the van and little J says, "I had fun mom". Why oh why don't we take more time for moments like these?

Friday, August 15, 2008

Feeling Sorry for Myself


Remember when I said I was feeling more positive? Yeah, right. That went out the window about 3 days ago. We are now approaching day 11 of the flu. To top it off, my two youngest now seem to have hand, foot and mouth disease. The odd thing is that they still are throwing up. Just when I think we're taking a turn for the better, one of them starts upchucking again. By this point, we've almost gone through an entire box of diapers (from the diarrhea) and I have washed my hands so many times my skin burns every time the water hits it.

And........ typical kid style they like to have interrupted sleep all night, get you up at 5 a.m. and then have a nice 3 hour nap at opposite times I might add, so there is no possibility of my having a nap. I have to do about 4 loads of laundry a day from all the poop and puke explosions, we've steam cleaned the couch cushions 3 times now and have had to spot clean the living room carpets at least 4 times. Fortunately, a few of the worst moments were on the linoleum, easy cleanup.

So I'm tired and heartily sick of sick kids. When I went to get dressed this morning, knowing that I'd have to wait to grab a shower when the baby is napping, I lost it, I jumped into my bed and hid under the covers and had myself a good old pity party. Along with the tears came the thoughts of what an immature and selfish mom I was. Here my children are sick and I'm indulging myself in the ol woe is me's. I'm so tired I can't think straight plus I have to work this evening. My business partner is away on holidays so there's no one else to cover for me and I have been struggling with nausea all week. I don't actually get sick, I just get the joy of feeling like I'm going to. My patience is at an all time low and I don't even have the energy to deal with the fights. I stop myself because I know that I'm not going to handle it very well. Like my well known theory is, if mom isn't happy.. no one is happy.

But what can you do, you shrug it off, get dressed and carry on knowing that along with dispensing some well needed hugs and kisses along the way that the end is near, there is light at the end of tunnel. I have to keep reminding myself and my children, mommy loves them, mommy's sorry she's grumpy, she's trying. Oh Lord, am I trying!

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Thank the Good Lord for My Job

I didn't think I'd ever be so happy as to go to work today! My children, yes all 3 of them, are STILL SICK. Just when you think we're on the mend, they start yakking up again.

The up side is that I got almost 6 1/2 hours sleep last night, I mean straight, in a row, non-interrupted sleep until 6:00 a.m. when I woke to Miss E rustling around in the kitchen. She had gotten sick and was looking for a cloth to clean it up, bless her heart. So mommy to the rescue once again. Of course, it being 6 a.m. I was not up for stripping the entire bed and was thankful that she had mainly gotten sick on her bedspread so I rolled that off to side promptly produced a spare blanket and told her to go back to bed. She pointed out one teeny remaining wet spot on the sheet and I told her to sleep on the other side of her bed away from it. She sleeps in a Queen sized bed afterall AND I didn't want to wake her sister. Less than an hour later, they were all up anyways.

So I've been cleaning and washing and cleaning and washing all day long. O has started to throw up again and his diaper could make a grown man cry. So although I had a twinge of guilt leaving them with hubby, I was more than a little relieved to be getting out of that infested pit of sickness.

However, O also suddenly developed blisters on his heels so I'm very worried he's got hand, foot and mouth as well. The crap will definitely hit the fan then. We're supposed to go camping next week. Cross your fingers......... get out the bleach and starting sanitizing.

Oh and I burned the potatoes. O had gone down for his 4th little catnap (normally he's a good sleeper) and the girls were zombies on the floor watching a show (about all you can do with them when they're lethargic) and I had supper on the go, stopped to read something online next thing I know I smell something burning. Do I get up and check? No. I think it's just the potato water spluttering out of the pot onto the element. So when I do go to check the potatoes, I find them completely boiled dry. I'm no gourmet cook but I do know how to cook regular food, mashed potatos along with it. I have never boiled anything dry like that in my life. I mean not when I was sitting right there. Talk about dumb. Poor hubby gets left with the pot too. *LOL* okay so most won't think that's funny, but it kinda is to a tired momma who's been handling most of the tough stuff all weekend and then some.

Saturday, August 9, 2008

Update on Me

Despite the fact that my kids are sick at the moment, I am realizing that I am much more positive than I used to be. My headaches have finally subsided. I only get them once in while now and usually can relate it to my period, lack of sleep or something like that.

I finally got my progesterone cream and after only 1 week of using it, I'm back to a 28 day cycle. I swear the very next day after using it for the first time I was more upbeat. I had had a really really bad day the day before and it was actually my husband who reminded me to start using it. I had even reached the point where I had started to do some research on depression and was preparing for opening the discussion with my husband. (He doesn't necessarily agree with taking meds for it). So, I've put that on the back burner for now. My mood's not 100% yet (when will it ever be?) but it's getting better so I figure I will give the cream a chance to work and see what happens. After all, considering I've struggled with weight and infertility for years I bet I've been unbalanced (hormonally *LOL*) for years.

So we shall see how it goes. Hopefully the days of whiny blogs are over. Let's make room for some positive life experiences! Now if only I could get a consistent good night's sleep.