Wednesday, December 31, 2008

It's snowing.......again!

Well, we might beat the snow record of 1964 yet........all we needed was another 0.7 cm for the month of December and we had it. Soooooo, I do believe we might just make it, as I just looked out the window and what do ya think?!? The record is 89.7 cm and that is in Richmond at the airport, but I do think we in Maple Ridge/Pitt Meadows already have it!!!


It's been a very quiet New Year's Eve. We went to the grocery store and it wasn't as crowded as I would have thought. We watched a great Canada/US Junior hockey game on tv and Canada won!!! I had a nap this afternoon just so I could stay up late, as I am just so darn predictable and boring. I usually fall asleep on the couch watching TV, wake up just in time to see the festivities in New York or Seattle......kiss, kiss, hug, hug and I am off to bed. I think I am old.......but I can honestly say that I have been doing that since I was young!
Tonight we have the honour of babysitting......it was very last minute, but Baby is here and he is fast asleep in his crib. He is teething and gave his mommy a bit of a rough day......the plan was to take him out with them, but he really just needed to sleep. So he came for a bit of a play, and then went off to Dreamland before 9:30. Look how he is getting around these days, one minute he is on one side of the room and then I turned around and he was already on the other. Pretty good for a little guy who still doesn't crawl. He just pivots on his bum, and as of this week he can now get from lying to sitting and back again. Got another tooth last week and this week so that brings it to a total of 3, all on the bottom. He wants to wish you all a very Happy New Year!!!


Monday, December 29, 2008

It's over for another year!

It is always so surprising how we prepare for months and then Christmas is over in the blink of an eyelash. The other most surprising part of this year was the amount of snow that we got. I am sure that there was at least 50 cm, but I never did go out and measure. It just kept coming and coming and coming. Made for getting around very difficult if you didn't have a 4X4. And we got stuck in our cul-de-sac more than once even though we have one. It was beautiful, but we gave out little SUV to Baby and his family to use on Christmas Day and Boxing Day as they had to get out to Chilliwack and Abbotsford respectively. #3 was extremely grateful, as she said they really wouldn't have made it down the side streets without it.

We remained housebound and it was actually quite nice. Our van made it to the other side of town with a little bit of difficulty on Christmas, but it needs to go back and get serviced once again. Spent $529 on it but that hasn't really fixed the stalling out problem. It's just ever so fun to be driving down the road and then there isn't any power............so far it's just a matter of putting it into N and cranking it on and we really don't even skip a beat. But that's really not the way it's supposed to be,(especially when it does it every couple of minutes) so luckily I am on holidays right now and it is going back tomorrow to get fixed properly. Obviously it wasn't the just the O2 sensor......maybe it was the map sensor too!! And then again, I am not a mechanic so we will find out soon enough. I hear that I get to go out for breakfast when we take it in in the morning so I am happy about that. I just love going out for meals!!

We went to the Giants game tonight and they won, as usual. They only scored 3 goals though, so this is the first game that we didn't receive free appetizer coupons because whenever the Giants score 6 or more goals, then everyone in attendance gets a coupon for the White Spot. That really is ok, as I don't think that we can possibly even use the 10 or more that we already have. We do go out for dinner a fair amount, but that is ALOT of coupons to use before June.

I went to the Canucks/Senators game last night and that was lots of fun too. Vancouver didn't get as much snow as we did, but they did get their fair share. My cousin was in town and he phoned me from the Bayshore......when I talked to him he said that there wasn't much snow, but he must have had a water view, because there was at least 30cm. Then again, he grew up in southern Alberta, so I guess it's all in how you look at it!

Thursday, December 25, 2008

It's Christmas!!

And this is what our house looked like on Christmas Eve, about 3pm. We had just gotten home from finishing up. I am guessing that there is almost 2 feet of snow and it was still coming down like crazy. The weather outside was frightful!!
It's much better now, as the snow actually stopped around 5 and that has helped out the road conditions. Christmas Eve service was cancelled and I was truly disappointed, as it just feels like something is missing. After dinner we walked over to our friend's Open House. (just around the corner, although the mounds of snow did make it more than a 10 minute journey) It's been a fun day.....I was supposed to work, but that got cancelled too. So I was able to attend to most of the chores and that was good. Didn't finish cleaning up, but I can do that another day. My dessert is done for tomorrow night and the Wife Saver is in the fridge, ready for tomorrow's breakfast. We are off to Baby's house in the morning where we will meet with all the miracles, and then #2 and #3 are off to their in-laws for dinner and more festivities. We are going to SIL and BIL's, and that is just on the other side of town, so I am glad that we don't have far to go. The forecast is for more flurries, and sunny in the afternoon. I hope that is right, as too many people had to cancel their plans for tonight and it would be sad to have to change it all for tomorrow too. Gotta run, as Santa still needs to come and we must go celebrate the birth of a King!!

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

HO HO HO!!!

As you can see, he wasn't all that fond of the jolly old soul, but at least he didn't cry. He actually reached out to him when he first met him and Santa thought that was a good sign. Santa told him that he had beautiful eyes and that eyes were the window to his soul. Valley Fair's Santa is really good.......he had been recommended to us for awhile and we waited until the 19th of December to actually go, so there was only a 10 minute line-up. Looking a little bit cautious.....he kept looking up at him and that would have been a really cute picture, but the elves worked very hard to try and get him to smile. No way, our baby didn't want any part of it, so this is Christmas 2008!

Monday, December 22, 2008

Merry Christmas!

Well, the cards finally arrived today (after a 2 week delay) and I still need to address some envelopes and print off some letters, but I think it is finally starting to come together. I have a few last minute things to get and I will, as usual, be out on Christmas Eve day, finishing all that will need to be done. I have a list that is starting to get shorter, but nonetheless, I will not be able to finish tomorrow as I am working. Sooooooo, the baking is started, the groceries are bought, some of the presents are wrapped and I have just over 48 hours..........No problem, it will get done, it always does!!!!

Thursday, December 18, 2008

I am so tired.......

.......but it is totally self-inflicted. We went to Trevor Linden night and the hockey game last night. Which was so well done and such a great evening!!! We beat the Oilers too, so that was extra special. But afterwards, I went with my friend to the airport to pick up her daughter. The flight was due in at 12:45 and of course, it was late, so that just made it an extra, extra late night. Walked through the door at 2:37 and fell into bed by 2:45. Got a couple of hours of sleep before Hubby's alarm went off and then never really ever did go back to sleep. Sooooooo, it will be early to bed for me tonight........I don't even think I will be able to stay awake for Grey's Anatomy. And I am actually supposed to go to another Christmas Concert tonight so that is questionable at this point too. I have been to two already and I really have enjoyed them. The children work so hard!! (and so do the teachers, I know that too!!!)

I can't believe that Christmas is only a week away. I am not ready.......but it is coming together. I gave Baby part of his present already as he really needed his winter coat this week. Didn't really think it was fair that he should have to wait and he doesn't know the difference anyway. Old Navy had their outerwear on for half price so I bought him a Size 2.......it's a little big but that is a good thing!!

It has been soooooooo cold out for the last 5 days and the snow was absolutely beautiful yesterday!! I hated it when the windchill made it -17 on Sunday but it makes -2 and -3 of the last few days feel almost balmy. I still don't like it, but I hear that we are supposed to get more snow on the weekend and the cold snap is supposed to last until next week. That means we should probably have a white Christmas. For us, that will work out fine as we don't really have far to drive, but that is the treacherous part about snow is the driving. Not very many people in the lower mainland seem to know how to drive in it........

My van is not liking the cold weather either. As a matter of fact, I am quite sure that it hates it as much as me. Going in for servicing tomorrow and hopefully that will fix'er up for a while. This post is starting to sound rather whiny so I think I will sign off and come back later with an attitude adjustment!! Cheers!!

Thursday, December 11, 2008

6 down, 21 more to go!

This is at the beginning of November.
And here she is a the beginning of December!
My little Roots of Empathy baby has such a great temperament and she is just loving coming into the classroom. She smiles and goos, and really loves the attention. It was fun to see how much she has grown, and the children just love it when she comes to visit them!

Sunday, December 7, 2008

On Countdown

Well, it's only 2 and half more weeks until the big day!! After spending the second weekend in a row in varying Malls around the Lower Mainland, I can honestly say that we are on the homestretch. Yahoo!!

We started our Friday night with leftovers for dinner, and #1 coming out to enjoy the evening with us at the Maple Ridge/Mission hockey game. #3 and #4 came as well, so did Baby and his Dad, and my niece was also there so it became quite the family affair. It was Teddy Bear Toss night, so it was rather fun. Only 6 seconds in and the Flames scored their first goal, so that was over quickly. Baby was very happy to sit and watch his second game of the season. It really does impress me how well he sat for almost 2 hours, just watching all the activity in front of him. Lotsa fun!!

And Saturday and Sunday have absolutely flown by! I scored dinner at Wah Wing last night so I was feeling rather blessed. Tonight was Shepherds Pie from Costco and that was quite tasty too. I have a whole lot of wrapping to start, but the Christmas season is starting to look a whole lot brighter..........now that the shopping is almost done!!

Friday, December 5, 2008

The Wonder of Christmas







Christmas is coming.....

.........Just in case, anybody didn't know. LOL!! This year seems to have gone by even more quickly than any other. It's December the 5th and we are all getting very excited about Jesus's birthday. Our house is decorated, probably the earliest ever but that is because Miracle #4 is on Winter lay-off and because there is a baby who visits who just loves all the lights and decorations. He is already 8 months old and he weighs 27 pounds 11 ounces. He measures 29 inches exactly. He is really loving all the Christmas festivities and it is so fun to watch the wonder in his expressions. His mommy is really trying to get him on a schedule and it appears to be working. He got his first tooth last week and still wakes up at least 3 times during the night, but other than that, he is pretty much perfect. He is a very, happy boy and trying desperately to crawl. For a boy that isn't quite there yet, he certainly moves around alot. I tried to take some pictures of him last night and he now sees the camera and comes for it. Makes photography just that much harder as he is always, always moving!

We have been making Christmas decorations this week and it has been fun for the daycare children to also anticipate the big day. They are very, very excited and their enthusiasm is contagious. My Roots of Empathy class was described as "antsy" the other day and that would be an understatement to say the very least! Baby Chloe made her second visit to the classroom and she is such a cute baby girl. Ever so laid back and complacent about visiting, and loving all the attention as 24 little children learn about her development. This theme was about crying and next month we are talking about caring and planning. It's been going very, very well!!

Saturday, November 29, 2008

I suppose I do.......

.......have a life that does not include the baby, but he is the most fun right now. I work, I have appointments, I see my friends and family. I go to hockey games, I watch movies, I teach Sunday School, and I prepare for the Christmas season. The days go by rather quickly and I really sometimes wonder how they go so fast. Lots of babies have been born this past month.....only one little girl and four baby boys. Last night I went to Chicago, the play, not the place, put on by one of the local high schools. It was superb, and I had a wonderful time with my friends. Today, Hubby and I finally braved the Malls and got a few things accomplished for Christmas. Still lots more to do, but it does feel good to finally get a start on the shopping. Miracle #4 put the Christmas tree up the other night and this is the earliest it has EVER been done, but it does look very pretty and Baby just loves it!! He is going to be a lot of fun this year as he just loves everything. Especially all of the lights!!

Friday, November 28, 2008

His First Portrait

Taken on November 23rd, 2008.......and being such a big boy!! The general sitting went fairly well and exactly one hour after this was taken, he was fast asleep in his mommy's arms. He didn't really want to smile, but I do LOVE this pic as his expression is rather priceless. He just got his first tooth yesterday and that is probably one of the reasons he sucked in his bottom lip.

Friday, November 14, 2008

Monday Night Football

Monday nights have turned into a favorite for me. Because it's Football night at one of the local pubs, and Baby's dad goes to see all of his friends and Baby and his mom come for dinner and a little play. It's my night that I have guaranteed Grandma time and I just love it. I get to feed him dinner and get him ready for bed and we just have a really nice evening. Being a Grandma is just the best job on Earth!!

Friday, November 7, 2008

27 pounds 5 ounces.......


......at 7 months old! He is almost 29 inches tall and he is such a big boy! He fits size 24 month clothes already and went into a Size 6 diaper this week. Now if he would only sleep through the night, it would probably be a perfect life.........but that is asking for a miracle right now. He eats 3 meals a day now, still likes rice pablum the best but is okay with his vegetables too. Doesn't really care all that much for fruit. He did learn how to roll from his back to his stomach last night and was very proud of himself. (he's been going from his stomach to his back for awhile now) Babbles a lot but only says dada and baba. Sort of does pat-a-cake but it's a bit of a fluke when he actually does accomplish it. Still no teeth, but working very hard at getting them. He's at a really cute age right now, but I think I say that at every age. I am slightly partial to him!! My cute baby boy!!

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Trick or Treat!

Isn't he a cute little teddy bear? We took him to the Mall and that was entertaining to say the very least. I have never seen so many dressed up children in the same place in my whole life! We didn't even care about the treats, we just loved to look at all the costumes. There were hundreds of children there.........and yes, it was raining, but they literally lined up to go to each store, single file, one by one, some two by two........

It did stop raining long enough for all the kids to get out in the evening and we only got 51 children. Gone are the yesteryears of almost 200........everyone I talked to said that the numbers were down, I know where they all were. At the Mall!!!

We celebrated Hubby's birthday......twice in the last few days. I do feel bad for him as the day after Halloween is not the best day to have a birthday. But he got spoiled with 2 dinners, some fun gifts and a cake after all. Hubby loves his sweets!!! To top it all off, it is my dad's birthday on the same day and we haven't even got to him yet. A trip into Coquitlam is definitely on the agenda!!

I have my first Roots of Empathy session tomorrow and I spent most of the evening prepping my material. It's been ready to go for the last couple of weeks, but did I had some last minute stuff that needed to get done. I just love all the materials, every time I go through it, it is more fun and more exciting! The 26 books are amazing!! And the baby toys are pretty cool too!

Thursday, October 30, 2008

Pumpkin Patch


We finally made a trip to the pumpkin patch before the rain started and we had a wonderful time. Baby loved looking at the animals, especially the horses, and we took the token picture with the pumpkins.
It's been a busy week. All of the children are very excited about trick or treating and we have had fun preparing. We made it to Art Knapp's in Port Coquitlam yesterday and they loved the hay maze and the bouncy castle.
I went to the Canucks/Bruins game on Tuesday night and it was a real sleeper. Newspaper forewarned me in the morning.......I am just glad that the company was so great! Tonight was Pay-per-View and most of the miracles were here for dinner, and a really good hockey game. Baby was entertaining too as he has quite the personality these days. He has discovered his voice, and mimics a lot of sounds......so cute!! He is almost seven months old......it is going by way too fast!

Saturday, October 25, 2008

Google

Have you ever googled your name? It's actually rather interesting and most of the sites have absolutely nothing to do with you, but it is a surprise how many come up. All of mine have to with my work or the Fun Runs that I have attended, but over 15,000 came up when I googled my name. It was a rather entertaining way to spend some time this morning.......

We went to the Maple Ridge Flames/Grandview Steelers game last night and it was a great game. Grandview had 50 shots on goal and the Flames still won the game. #3 and her husband won some tickets at a fundraiser a few weeks ago so they treated us to some really good entertainment. Baby came and he was so funny as he watched the play, end to end for almost 2 periods. He didn't mind the big horn and was most indignant of us when we covered his ears when the Flames scored........he didn't like being restrained.

It's been a lazy Saturday, thus far. We slept in, I am slowly tidying and doing laundry......and have been catching up on emails and paperwork. We will probably go to church tonight as #1 has asked if we are going and plans on coming too.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

My Roots of Empathy baby

Isn't she beautiful? She is only 7 weeks old and so I am late in starting my program (we were supposed to begin this week).......but what can you do about it? Not much. Roots babies have to be between 2 and 4 months old and little Chloe won't be 2 months until the beginning of November. I had my family visit last night and it went really well. She is a third child and her mom is super relaxed so this should be a lot of fun for all of us. I will present to a Grade 2 class and so far everyone has been super helpful and supportive. We are all really looking forward to it!

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Happy 1st Anniversary! One day late.....

So, it's been one whole year! Don't they look lovely? I would like to say that they are on their way to a celebratory dinner but that wasn't the case. It was the original plan........but you know how it is when life gets in the way.......
They are on their way to a celebration of life for a very dear friend, who wasn't even quite 26 years old. Fought a valiant fight, but lost his battle to colon cancer on October 7th. They will celebrate their anniversary another day, and I am sure will never forget their very first anniversary.
Here's our therapy! He stayed with us while his mom and dad went to the service and then went back to the reception to give out smiles and hugs. The original plan was for him to have his shots, but they got post-poned and he came back and spent the evening with us anyway, and was a perfect little angel. Still making us smile every day!

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Mothers and Daughters

Here we are at the beginning of the race, just before I was ready to go at 7:35 am.....
..... And here we are about 3 hours later! Miracle #1 had just finished her half-marathon and I had been waiting with Hubby for her to complete. She started her run at 8:00 and we were celebrating in the sunshine by 10:30. It was a great experience and we are feeling rather accomplished. It just makes me want to try harder for next time!

Monday, October 13, 2008

Marathon

We did it!!! This picture was taken in Kelowna, after seven and a half hours of Darlene walking her very first 42.2 km marathon!! I am so very proud of her......she started training in May and has admittedly done a little more than she should of but that is her Type A personality. She wanted to finish in 6 hours, and it took her an hour and half longer than she had thought. But she made it! And the smile on her face tells all!

As for me.......I bailed. I was going to do the 21.1 half km and realized that about half-way through September that I was not properly trained or prepared. Not to mention that my orthotics were making my body re-align, and I wasn't finshed yet. Getting new orthotics just 2 months beore a marathon is not so smart......maybe it would be ok for some people, but not so good for me. So I ended up walking the 10 km, and had a very enjoyable walk, didn't really have a very good finishing time, but still enjoyed myself thoroughly! I am wearing my medal proudly, as that is the very first medal I ever received!!

And Miracle #1 actually ran the entire half-marathon in 2 hours and 17 minutes!!! She started a half hour after me and passed me on the 5 km marker, and I am immensely proud of her!! She is not really too impressed with her time, but this was her very first time that she has done this and I personally think that she did really, really well!! She says she would like to do it again, and that is great!! We had a fun weekend, quite a whirlwind trip to Kelowna, and it is nice to be home.

Thursday, October 9, 2008

Sleeping.......

........is very important. Everyone needs it, some people need more than others. Ever since Baby was born, he has dictated when his mommy is allowed to sleep. Well, he slept almost 11 hours last night, and do you think that his mom could too? NOT!! It just doesn't happen that way. #3 phoned me this morning and she was quite concerned. They both fell asleep in her bed at 11, she woke up and moved him into his own bed around 2, and he was still sound asleep at 9:45am, lying in the same position that she had placed him in in the middle of the night. I told her to go in and make noise and tell him it was morning, and I was sure that he would stir. After all, it was almost 10, time to be up and about anyway. He did wake up with a smile and some chatter and all was well. First time he ever did that and we are all very, very pleased. Doesn't mean that he will do again, but it was about time. And she was a typical mom and immediately rushed to his cribside when she woke up and had to check if he was still breathing. Us moms, we are just all the same!

Saturday, October 4, 2008

Friday, October 3, 2008

Only 4 ounces!

Baby got weighed today and he only gained 4 ounces in two weeks! He is finally slowing down and for that we are all so happy. He will be 6 months old tomorrow and that has gone by way too quickly! He is such a blessing to our lives and it is hard to believe that we had a life without him. He weighs 25 lbs 5.5 ozs, is 28 inches long and fits into 18-24 month clothing. His shoes are a Size 4 but are rather snug so that's also because he has very, very wide feet. He is wearing a Size 5 diaper but they are rather snug too, and that's because of his thighs! He started eating rice pablum this week and inhales his 3 tablespoons, so perhaps he should have a little bit more. Is sleeping a little bit better through the night, but still doesn't go more than six hours. I told his mom that I think he just gets lonely as she doesn't usually feed him, he just needs a cuddle. The drool is incessant, to the point that is very difficult to get a picture of him without a shiny chin. He spent the afternoon with us today and that was very, very fun!

Went to the Giants game tonight and they beat the Seattle Thunderbirds 10 to 2. It was a great game and we have managed to watch the Giants score 17 goals in the 2 games that we have been to this year. I went to a pre-season Canucks game last week too and they have now won 6 in a row. I realize that this is very premature to get excited about but it's definitely good!!

My sister mentioned to me that I haven't been blogging very much but I really don't feel all that newsworthy these days. Life has settled down quite comfortably, the children are nicely settled into their September routines. (oh right, it's October already!) My youngest is 3 so I don't want to say that life is boring but it has gotten rather easy for now, at least work-wise.

Hubby's brother turned 52 last week and had a heart attack on his birthday so that was a bit of a worry. He is fine for now, but has a lot of things to change in his life.......let's just hope that he does! I think that he and his family need a lot of prayer right now.

On a happier note, my sister turned 50 last weekend and her daughters had a lovely surprise party for her. It was fun to get together with the fam!

Saturday, September 20, 2008

25 pounds 1.6 ounces

So we did a quick little weigh-in at the Health Unit yesterday and that is one big baby boy! Only five and a half months and as much as his mommy likes to worry that he is too big, the nurses just love that he is as big as he is. Hard on my back, but cute as a button! I would like to believe that he recognizes me when he sees me but he is such a smiley little guy that everyone gets a grin. We babysat him last weekend and he just knows when his mommy leaves as he does a great little angry cry.......probably lasts about 15 minutes and then he is fine. I spoiled him rotten and held him for 3 hours when he slept and I thoroughly enjoyed it!

Monday, September 15, 2008

He can sit up!




He's just getting bigger and cuter all of the time. We went for a walk tonight and then after we came home he sat unassisted for the first time! (ok, we put pillows behind him, but that was just precautionary!)

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Alaska

So we are home, and we had a wonderful time on our cruise. This is just one of the pics that I took and as I was starting to upload, the batteries went in my camera so I am waiting until they recharge and I will post more. The colour of Tracy Arm is quite hard to describe and this picture really doesn't do it justice, but I think you can probably get the jist of it. The little ice cubes in the water get bigger and bigger as we get closer to the Sawyer Glacier but it is rather fascinating and surprisingly entertaining to watch floating ice all afternoon. This was on the third day, in between Juneau and Skagway and it was sooooooooooo cold!! I am so happy that we brought winter coats, and was interesting to watch the many people who didn't. Alaska is very wet and very cold, and I knew that from talking to my friends who have cruised there but we were very lucky and only got one day of rain. The little sales girl in the candy store told Hubby that she had just graduated and was looking very forward to moving to Portland, as Ketchikan was a great place to be from.......but not to live. They get 330 days of rain a year, and that is way more than the lower mainland. As we cruised back into Vancouver Harbour on Sunday morning, it has been a real treat to enjoy the warmth and sunshine again!

Sunday, August 31, 2008

Baby Update

So he is officially 24 pounds exactly! He can roll over from front to back and is really close at going the other way too. He is drooling like crazy and last night his cheeks were really flushed. He gave his mom a really great sleep on Thursday night and actually went 8 full hours, but made up for that the next night when he was awake every 2 hours. He likes his thumb, finds it a few times during the day, but isn't really so attached that it is always in his mouth. He loves people and smiles alot, especially for the ladies. He especially likes all of the little children!

Saturday, August 30, 2008

Alaska-bound!

We are leaving on an Alaskan cruise tomorrow and I am really too tired to think of anything witty or profound to say. I still have so much to do to get things ready as I have Baby and his family moving in to take care of the daycare when I am gone. It is much easier to just close it down and lock the door, but this works way better for all of the families that I work for. And #3 is really appreciating making a little bit of extra cash while she is on maternity leave.

I still have a bunch of crafty things to cut out for Fireside Kids in the morning so I think I had best get at it while the last load of laundry is in the dryer. Hubby has started to pack but I think I will wait until morning and then just throw it all together. The nice part about leaving from Vancouver is there isn't any flight to catch and from the time we board the ship just after noon tomorrow, we can officially relax and enjoy our beautiful skyline. So I guess if I don't get much sleep tonight, it won't really matter as I will have a whole week to catch up. Sooooooo, we are officially outta here!!!!! See you all in a week!

Thursday, August 28, 2008

Grandma's little helper


When I took my training course, I left Baby and his mom in charge of the daycare. They did a a fabulous job and they had a lot of fun with it. Here's my little helper, just after a visit to the park!

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Roots of Empathy

I just finished a 3 day training course to become a Roots of Empathy instructor. It will take me another 9 months to get certified but it will be worth it in May when I complete the actually delivery of the program. For information you can go to their website at www.rootsofempathy.org but it will give me some purpose and direction for the next school year. Because I am always looking for purpose and direction! I love my job......no, I like my job, I love my children. But I do get tired of always being the smartest person in the room. I crave adult conversation and validation and this will help me. It won't totally fulfill it, but it will help. Ironic as it is, as it is still with children, it will give me a morning out, once a week to do something a little different......a little bit less predictable......and a little bit challenging. I love change, and this seemed like such a perfect fit. Like it was made for me.......cuz I really do think that it was.

I first read about Roots of Empathy in The Province a few years ago and I know I have also read magazine articles and local press coverage since then. At the time, I investigated taking the instructor program and it cost $800 and it was only held in Toronto. The key point person that I talked to was actually more impressed that I could probably find her babies to work with in the classroom than having me actually help with the delivery. I was intrigued.......it was a possibility, but the timing didn't seem right at the time. So in June, when I spoke with my teacher friend about it, as it was just wrapping itself up in her Grade 4/5 classroom, I listened again with great interest and passion. She was able to get the me the name of the District contact person and everything just fell smoothly into place. I commuted to Mission for the last 3 days and had an intensive and overwhelming training program with some of the greatest, most intelligent, empathetic women I have ever met. The majority of them were social workers, but one Drug and Alcohol counsellor, one Aboriginal Liason officer and one self-employed child care provider rounded out our group. The program was made for me, I know that when Mary Gordon, the founder was thinking about who could instruct this program, she was thinking about me! School District #42 and the Ministry of Children and Families were good enough to provide the funding, (which according to one of the ladies, was $2000) and I am very inspired and honoured to be doing this!

Sunday, August 24, 2008

Rejection

So I started out on Friday night by being rejected at the Blood Donor Clinic, for the third time in the last year. I was thinking that 3 strikes and I really am out but ended up chatting to a young lady who comes 5 or 6 times a year with her husband and is rejected every time. Never gives up and figures that one day it will happen. #4 goes quite often too and maybe I should just keep trying with him.....they take his blood every time and he is so faithful at going. My iron is always too low, every time that I go, that is the same dilemma. And this time I ate my Cream of Wheat faithfully, which I really think tastes like sawdust. The young lady at the Blood Donor Clinic says she makes hers into a pancake, and adds syrup......she claims it isn't too bad that way. Hmmmmm.........

Baby and his mom came over Friday night and we went for a nice walk while his daddy had gone to the football game. He is just getting cuter and more personable every time that I see him. He really likes his stroller and inevitably falls asleep every time but it made for a really nice Friday evening. I went to a Come Play With Us! Conference yesterday and I am really glad that the Keynote Speakers were good, because the workshops were just okay. Maybe after 20 years of attending ECE conferences, I am just hearing the same thing too many times over........but it was still fun to network, and I even won a door prize. Lots of new finger play activities! And I also got a catalogue for SPECTRUM which was good because they had lots of fun stuff that I haven't seen before......but then I haven't been to Creative Children in awhile either. I was very reserved and didn't spend as much as I could have, and winning the felt activities sure helped with that too.

Came home to a freshly vacuumed house and Hubby had made a lovely dinner; then we went to church and had a lazy evening watching the last of the Olympics. It's over today and Canada did pretty good, considering they were shut out for the first week. Came back with 18 medals this week, according to today's newspaper. It's very dreary out today, we were thinking of heading to Birch Bay but I don't think that is gonna happen. It is weird to have a Sunday that there is not a single activity planned for, but I do have a ton of paperwork that is calling my name. I am off to a course in Mission for the next 3 days so there is lots to get ready for the week too!

Friday, August 22, 2008

Four and Half Months Old



I love my pedorthist!

Isn't that a great word? He told me that he went to school for 6 years to learn how to do what he does........and that is to examine people for orthotics. I picked mine up yesterday and they are quite the contraptions......2 pair, actually, and they are both very different. One pair is a full foot to go into my running shoes, and the others are half of a foot to fit into my dress shoes. I also have one leg that is one whole centimeter shorter than the other. I always knew that one leg is shorter, but I didn't know by how much. I think that is a lot, but he didn't and either did my chiropractor. Nothing that a little heel lift can't fix!

So now that I am all straight and aligned, I am ready for my half-marathon in October! NOT!!! Now I have to go back to Square One again and get my hip working properly in alignment. I have had my heel lift for a couple of weeks and the pain in my left hip has been rather intense, as I straighten out my body in the way it should go. Now that I have new orthotics, I hope that this is an easier transition, because it is less than two months away! Like my chiropractor told me though, it's not that I cannot do this, the object is to be pain-free the next day!

It's been a busy week, lots of social time, lots of fun with the children. I went to a funeral yesterday for a man who lived to be 84. It was a wonderful memorial.........and we can all only dream to live such a wonderful life! A life well-lived, according to the pastor, and that is very, very true. He loved his God, and his family and he served them well. I can only hope to live to be 84, and to be that loved and well-respected. He is in Heaven now, with his wife who died 2 years ago, and with his saviour, Lord Jesus!!! How cool is that!!!??

Monday, August 18, 2008

Shopping all weekend!

That's pretty much all we did this past weekend. Ended up at Lougheed Mall on Saturday, then we headed to Coquitlam Center, and then even to the hockey card store. Baby was not impressed that the Pitt River Bridge was backed up on our way home but #3 was sweet and had bought us pizza for dinner. So at least the adults stomachs were taken care of, and Baby was accomodated, but he still complained from PoCo to MR. So cute, and as soon as we passed Superstore, he was lulled to sleep and that was the end of his complaining. He does like his carseat now, but he only falls asleep if we are moving.

Got home, went to church, #1 came back for leftovers and a visit and we made it a fairly early night. Sunday started with me greeting at church, then a big Costco shop and then a couple of the miracles and I headed off to Bellis Fair. Border line-ups were minimal, even though the radio said it was an hour, it was half of that. We ended up leaving Baby with his daddy and #3 did very well leaving her son for 6 hours and 50 minutes. She was on countdown as we came in from Mission as she was missing him terribly. Came home and he was sound asleep and his daddy said he was very, very good. We did well in the States as we had been looking for some good deals on baby shorts as our baby has grown into 18 month size already and all of his summer duds were getting too small. We had looked on Saturday, but to no avail. Sunday was much more productive and #4 was really happy with his bargains as well. It was an all-round wonderful weekend and the hot weather has disappeared now too, so it will be a welcome break to let the rain fall and water the grass and gardens........

Saturday, August 16, 2008

Weekends......

......are so relaxing! We started our Friday off really great by heading to Mediterranean Night at Meadow Gardens, for #1's belated birthday celebration. It was the first chance that we were able to get all 10 of us together. Yes, I said 10, because #1 brought along her friend. Usually we are 9, but it was nice last night to be 10. Unfortunately, Swan-E-Set was closed due to a tournament which meant that Meadow Gardens was extremely crowded and they had lost our reservation. "Next time, take the name of the person who takes your reservation, so it won't happen again." is what I was told. Well to be honest, this has never happened before and I don't really expect it to happen again, and obviously whoever should have gotten in trouble, didn't. We had a good night and I was glad to head to bed at midnight when everyone all left! The miracles all came back for some wine and visiting, so it made for a late night!

I had some errands to do this morning, and Hubby and I had a wonderful breakfast at the White Spot. It was crowded too, but they were very efficient. Baby and his mom just came in the door and we are headed to the Mall, so it is going to be a very fun day! We do all love to shop!!

Friday, August 15, 2008

Middle of August

So after a truly crazy day of work, this is what God gave me to look at!! It's not the greatest picture and it doesn't give the truest of colours, but it was so beautiful last night when I ventured outside to get some warm air. As much as I love my central air, I was turning into a popsicle last night when Hubby and I were watching the Olympics, so I went out to see how really, really hot that it was. The news reports weren't lying......it was rather warm out!
I had a nice little chat with some neighbours who were also enjoying the sunset, and we commented how we had all seen the raccoons who had been visiting us in the last few weeks. The children and I were all outside on Wednesday and even though the mommy and her two babies were very, very cute.........they were also very, very bold. Each step backwards that we took, the raccoons would come one step closer to all of us. Now, I was outside with seven little children under the age of 7, so my strategy if they decided to charge us was a little bit vague and unsure. One of the dads drove up to pick up his children and they weren't afraid of the truck, nor of his approach. It concerns me enough that we didn't even venture out yesterday at all, as I don't really like the idea that they are still wild animals and could very easily hurt one of the children that I care for. Interesting...........as it was way too hot to go outside yesterday anyways, but it won't stay this hot forever.
It's been a good week, but sad too. One of my friends lost her father this week and as much as we all rejoice that he is in the arms of Jesus now, it is still sad for her and her family. She was his angel here on Earth as he has been in hospital for the last two years and she was a wonderful daughter, who went every day to feed him and visit with him. I also took a week-long shift last Spring when M went to Alabama and I truly enjoyed my visits with this gentle, kind, loving man. He was sooooooo grateful for all that I did for him and the other patients in Baillie House were very entertaining to say the least. My one friend says that her objective in life is to never get too sick to have to end up in The Home. But I really liked it there, and Mr. M, for the most part said he did too. Never, ever did he complain......his mind was still sharp as a tack, it was just his body that didn't want to work any more. After his last stroke a few weeks ago, we all knew that it was just a matter of time, but it is still very, very sad for all of the family. We will miss him!

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

22 Pounds 13.4 Ounces

That is a very big boy! And he is just over 4 months old. I would post a pic but Blogger is being a little bit un-cooperative right now. And there really is a lot of recent ones on here anyway.

Baby went for his four month shots yesterday and pretty much smiled through them all. I guess it helps to have his chubby little thighs. It was all good, he brought his mom and dad over for dinner and we had a nice evening watching the Olympics and letting him sleep. He still sleeps an awfully lot. I guess that is why he gains half a pound a week. On just breastmilk!! The public health nurses are always so surprised and very pleased.

His daddy is scoring lots of brownie points with me these days. #3 went to Feist with her girlfriends last week and he took care of his son for six hours, all by himself. I phoned once and he informed me that everything was completely under control. Takes the bottle of pumped milk without any hesitation.......as we all say, he likes his food too much to rebel. But I just remember when mine were little, they just always such fusspots in the evening. Not so much for Rolie Polie Nolie........he isn't as content, but not really fussy either. Likes his mom a little more, but then he really is only 4 months old. Out of sight, out of mind! His mom claims that she misses him way more than he misses her, and for that she should be truly grateful.

And then on Sunday, #3 had soccer practice for a couple of hours so Baby and his daddy went up to Langley Farm Market and did the produce shopping, and then they came back home and swept the floor and vacuumed the house. Impressive, I say, very impressive!!

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Flexibility

So the one thing that I think that I have learned the best about being a mom, and about being self-employed, is how to be flexible. Things happen. Things change. Children get sick, and they do the unexpected. One of my little guys dislocated his elbow last night. I guess his brother "flopped" on him. They are 2 and 4 and they were being typical little boys and the big guy got the best of the little guy. Who saw this coming? Probably no one as that is how fast it happens. His mom and dad feel so bad and I feel especially bad for the older one as his privileges are pretty much non-existent this week. Personally, I think he feels bad enough as he had to watch his brother writhe around in pain as they waited for the ambulance to come, had to watch the paramedics work on his little brother, and then watched him get taken away in the ambulance. Now if that isn't traumatic enough, he isn't allowed to watch tv or play computer games for a week!! Now a week to a 4 year old is pretty much eternity, so that is going to be tough. He does come here 4 days a week, and I was told that I should also follow through on his punishment, but I just don't think that is feasible. We will see.......

And yes, I do feel bad for the little guy too, as he went though a lot of unnecessary pain. The dr was going to let him leave the hospital without popping it into place......told them it would do it all on it's own when it was ready. Now that is cruel!! The parents were insistent that he pop it, so he did and now this morning you would never even know he was hurt. It's going to take some doing just to keep him calm. All I know is that 3 children came without hats so we won't be going to the park as planned. And the climber at the playground doesn't really seem like the smartest place to be when you have just dislocated your elbow. Soooooo, I have to flexible and change it up, and I believe that we will be doing a lot of crafts today. Such is life.......and having to be flexible!

Monday, August 11, 2008

In my opinion.....

........I don't think that men over 60 should be mowing their lawns without a shirt. It happened last week and I saw another one today. I think it should be against the law!

Sunday, August 10, 2008

Televisions....

Now for anyone that knows me well, knows that I have never really loved television......as a matter of fact, I really never, ever even watched it for the first 20 years that I was married. Everyone else in my family did, and I joined them sometimes to catch up on news and to see what they were watching. I watched the kids movies, and then it was Party of Five and 90210.......Hockey Night in Canada.....The Transformers.........Survivor, Big Brother and a whole lot of home renovating shows. The tv was on and I just joined in so I could see what all the fuss was about. Now, I do like hockey, it is probably the one thing on my list that I still watch.
And I have even added a few favorites of my own. I like Eli Stone, and Grey's Anatomy, House and John and Kate Plus 8. I did like Ugly Betty when it first started but now I think it is gotten a little bit too far-fetched. I like tv.....I still don't love it, so you will all find it quite amusing that we bought a 50 inch plasma television yesterday. Because it was raining and we were bored and we went shopping. So on a whim, totally unresearched we made a $1599 purchase that I am totally mesmerized with. All of the miracles are rather impressed by it too. They were all over to have a peek, and help lift it in and help put the old one in the den. I think I love it!

Saturday, August 9, 2008

Does he look like a pre-school teacher?

I am a very proud mom!!! Miracle #2 is now the new pre-school teacher at Rainbow Pre-School! How exciting is that?!?!!!


Thursday, August 7, 2008

In His Big Boy Carseat Already!

So he went for a trip to Chilliwack on Sunday, and this is what he did! He loves it now that he is higher up and can see out. Still rear-facing, but he's 22 pounds and he fits in this one a whole lot better. $300 for a baby carseat, and he was in it for four months........I am really glad that his mom says that he won't be an only child. His dad says that he will, and his mom disagrees. Time will tell!!!
This is just so darn cute......he looks like he is faking, but he really is asleep! It was taken seconds after the last one.

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Turning 31.......and also 4 months old!

She had a lovely time with her aunties on Sunday.
New t-shirt!
Four months old already!!

Monday, August 4, 2008

BC Day

Well, the house has been vacuumed and picked up, the grocery shopping has been done, the spagetti sauce is simmering and we are awaiting the arrival of the family. Auntie and cousins have gone to Playland today, and the miracles are either working or relaxing. And here we sit. Hubby is watching tv, and I, as usual am stalking people on Facebook and answering emails.

It's been a wonderful long weekend!! Saturday started with a six year olds birthday party at Whonnock Lake, some shopping and cleaning up and dinner from Me'n'Ed's pizza, courtesy of Miracle #1. So yummy, their pyrogy pizza is the best pizza in existence! Baby and his mom and dad came by so his daddy could wash the car, we went to church and then my auntie and my cousins arrived from Calgary. We have had lots of fun visiting, and getting to know the children (who actually remember us very well from last year), and we all had a good time at the church picnic yesterday. Seemed like a low turn-out to me, but maybe we were just all so spread out. My cousin's children are 11, 8 and and 6 and extremely social so they all had a very good time.....except for the very end when a little bully decided to push our 6 year old off the slide. Twice!!! You would have thought we would have all learned the first time, but the little bully was very apologetic the first time, and we really believed it was an accident. Unfortunately, when it happened again, we sorta all figured it out. Too bad, so sad and we all forgive Little Bully.......I really do think he was only 3 or 4. Tough little guy.....I actually feel quite sorry for him. Our little guy is very reslient and holds no grudge.......I just love him so much. He's quite a unique six year old anyway, and so funny. As he left this am, he came back to give Hubby an extra hug, and said, "I just love your LEGO soooooo much!" We all had a good laugh, and off they went!!

Sunday, August 3, 2008

Happy Birthday Dear Miracle #1!!

Thirty-one years ago today, I became a mother. A teen-age mother. I had just graduated from high school, everyone else had great dreams and aspirations for me........and I had changed all of their plans. Because, I truly had made one of MY dreams come true. All I ever wanted was to be a mom. That was my dream job. It still is, always was, and I love being a mom. I think that I love being a grandma even more, but I still love motherhood.

Now, it has really never been easy!! Being a mom is the hardest job I have ever had, it is the hardest thing I have ever done, and it is still the job that will give me the greatest pleasure. I am a control freak........not something to always be proud of, but none-the-less, very true. It has taken me a long time to come to terms with that, but I know that I am. I like things done my way. Now, I know that it can't always be my way, but for the last almost-30 years, I sorta get it. Hubby says no to me......my dr. says no to me.......my boss has said no to me, but not too many other people actually do. The children all have tried, but it doesn't really work for them. I say no a lot. I have said no alot. I still continue to say no alot. It's just that other people don't really say it much to me. They try, they fail, we move on. (It does really help that I work with children......and I am the boss!)

No one has tested me as much as my first miracle. She is the one who has taught me more than any of the other miracles, combined. She is the one who used to remind me of myself, more than any of the others. Not so much any more. She has grown into the most beautiful 31 year old that I know. She is a brilliant scholar, overcome diversity, learned from all things that life has to offer and I love her more than I can ever express. She was my baby, I was fortunate to stay at home and raise all my miracles to adulthood, and I was there for absolutely all of her life, and will continue to be there. I was there for her first words, for her first shots, for her first steps, for her first day of school, for her first day of university, for her first love, for her first heartbreak, for her first death of a loved one, for her first trip to New York City, and for all of the other stuff in between. I know that we both still have a lot more living to do and our mother/daughter relationship will continue to grow.........but nothing makes my heart smile more than when the phone rings and I hear, "Hi, mom." I love you, my baby girl!!! You make me proud!!!

Friday, August 1, 2008

Bosco

Here is our favorite little boy, trying so hard to be a big boy!! Grandpa found him some really cute Reeboks in Burlington for a skookum deal so he is proudly showing them off. Bosco is his black lab who wasn't so sure about him when he was born, but sure loves him to bits now. Baby loves his great big dog too, the feelings are very mutual. Every time Bosco is near him, he just grins! And Bosco thrives on the attention.
Here is what Bosco does a lot of. He is very placid, but when you first meet him, he is way too hyper and way too excited. #3 was throwing a ball for him the other night and I was foolish enough to be watching with Baby and the rest of the the family. Luckily, I wasn't holding the little guy, because Bosco turned and ran head-first into my kneecap. Owie!! It has turned into a lovely bruise and Bosco felt sooooooo bad. If it didn't hurt so much, then I would have felt more sorry for him, but he hung his head immediately and came to give me kisses. It was very much an accident. After icing it and calming it down for 2 nights, it has turned various shades of purple and green, and now it doesn't even hurt, but it sure did when it happened!
My beautiful bruise by Bosco! I hope that his head didn't hurt as badly as my knee!