Monday, December 20, 2010
Anyhoo, a week ago Sat I did that. We took the boys to our first recreational skating of the season, I got out on the ice, did one lap and stupidly over-estimated my ability to stop in a way-cool manner. I should have taken it easy at first, got my ice legs back. I should have just stopped in my normal snow-plow style. But I didn't.
Apparently, I thought that all the "skills" I had acquired last year would still be there and that by some magical osmotic process I had picked up perfect skating abilities through all those hours spent watching L's hockey lessons.
Instead of executing a perfect hockey stop complete with shushing sound and spraying ice/snow, I went ass over tea kettle and broke my wrist. I threw out my arm to break my fall and broke my radius as a consequence. But yeah, I need my head more than my arm so I still think it was a fair trade-off.
So after I picked my humiliated self up off the ice I hobbled my way over to the bench. I was in pain, yes, but I really didn't think it was broken because I seriously thought a broken limb would be far more painful. I mean, I've whacked my elbow and it hurt more than that, stubbed (or likely broken) my toes, even had stomach pain higher on the pain scale. The thing was though, is that it wasn't dissipating. DH got me some ice, which actually worsened the pain and that's when the nausea kicked in along with accompanying cold sweats.
Oh, God, I thought. I seriously think I'm going to puke and I have one skate on, and one untied. The washroom is down the cobble-stoned hallway (sooo not good for skate blades), and I have a heart-stopping fear of vomitting in a public place. So I laid down on the bench and thankfully the sweats went away. In retrospect, I was probably in shock and that's just what I needed.
DH then decided we should hurry off to the hospital. I was of a mind to go home first and call a sitter; after all, we've all been to emerg on a Saturday night and know how long we can be there. But miracle of miracles, there was no one sitting in there and we were actually out in two hours!
I had to call the parents of the babies I look after and cancel them for the week. There was no way I was going to be able to change diapers and dress them for a walk to the school twice a day with one hand. I could barely dress myself! As it turns out, it was a good call. I had the babies back under my care today and even with most of the soreness gone and some mobility back, it was still a challenge changing a poopy bum.
There are some good points though. Since I can't get my cast wet, I absolutely CANNOT do dishes! And I was getting some nice attention from all my boys for a few days. (That's worn off now.)
The worst part of it is, is that I was greatly looking forward to the skiing season, as you know. The boys are having lessons the four days following Boxing Day, and I had hoped to ski while they are being instructed. Now I get to sit my ass in the stupid chalet for two hours at a time and feel miserable and sorry for myself. And I'm betting they don't have any wireless access, which would at least help a little with the boredom. Boo.
So now I have to wait until Feb to get the cast off, and then I really have no idea how long before I can ski. I'm hoping straight away. Like, drive from the fracture clinic to the slopes.
Ha ha, just kidding.
Monday, November 29, 2010
This conversation then turned to gift giving, and we both agreed that last year's "no adult gifts" policy was a little miserable, albeit a money-saver. So we decided this year that all those who will be present at Xmas dinner Xmas day at Mom's would draw a name, and we'd put a $50 cap on the gift. At least this way we're not spending a ton of money we don't have, and you get something to bring home.
Later Friday evening, mom and I went to see HP7.1. Really good, but even though I knew it wasn't going to be the full story, it still surprised me when it came to an abrupt end.
Saturday was DH's birthday, but not much time for celebrating as R had a semi-final playoff ballhockey game, we had shopping to do and L had a birthday party of his own to go to. I let DH pick the takeout dinner, and of course he picked Chinese food, his favourite.
Sunday dawned bright and early with a final playoff game for R (they lost :( ) and L's hockey lesson. I didn't even get to see R's game because I had to take L. As it turned out, it was ok, I hate watching them lose anyway.
Later on, we had to go to the inlaws for DH's bday dinner. Before we left I called N to see if Mom had talked to her yet about Xmas. As it turned out she had and N was good to go. I was so glad, because I hate the thought of my dad not getting a Xmas dinner. So we talked a bit about the gift exchange and decided that to eliminate spouses drawing their own spouse's name, the guys would draw guys' names and vice versa. This led to the question, would my brother A be attending? So N called him to ask which turned out to be quite the ordeal. First, he freaked out thinking we'd changed our minds about no gifts, stating that he and his girlfriend weren't purchasing gifts this year. N told him about our plan, and asked if he would be there. His reply was that he would likely be spending Xmas with his girlfriend (which is understandable) and that they'd already made tentative plans to be at her parents' place. When N told him about my dad coming, he seemed upset, God knows why. N said he almost seemed like he wanted to say no they wouldn't be coming, but didn't for some reason. I don't know why he didn't just say he already had other plans, it was a perfectly viable excuse. He also apparently stated that he and I weren't getting along. Really? News to me seeing as how we haven't communicated at all since N's party for my BIL in July. You would think that alone would mean we weren't talking, but that's actually pretty normal for us, to go months between seeing or speaking. Granted, we did have an argument then, but as an adult, I didn't feel that was a reason to believe we weren't "getting along". Don't you have to be in communication with someone in order for you to be "not getting along" with them? Siblings have arguments all the time, we're no exception. Whatever the truth of the matter is, if he doesn't feel comfortable being there, then he shouldn't come. And if he feels that we aren't "getting along" then he obviously is upset with me for some unknown reason, in which case perhaps he should talk to me about it. I'm not really sure how he could be upset with me when we haven't even communicated for 5 months! Whatever.
So Sunday we were off to the inlaws for yet another delightful dinner. Actually, the meal itself was for once not bad although as usual, overcooked and late. We had hoped to eat around 5, so that we wouldn't have to rush right off after dinner (it's an hour drive home). But of course we didn't eat until 6:30, as my MIL is stubbornly adamant when it comes to her meat thermometer. And she won't turn up the damn oven either! GRRRRRRR...
DH got a sweater from his Nan, and a Home Depot gift card from his parents. I got a spa gift card that I'll probably never use for no spas that are anywhere around here. Sigh. Again, whatever. And yes, I got a gift. Because his mother forgot my birthday back in the beginning of October YET AGAIN (every damn year). But she'll never ever admit to forgetting it. She made up some lame-ass excuse about "being on her back" and "laid up" whatever the he'll that's supposed to mean. Same excuse every year, it's getting old. I guess she's trying to tell me she's been too sick?? Um, since October? Not to mention all the times I've seen/spoken to her since then, and not a word, not a birthday wish, nothing. Give it up lady and just admit it!! You forgot!! Again.
So that was a reflection on my weekend, with some revelations thrown in there.
Tuesday, November 23, 2010
This morning I spent some time updating my music and playlists. Often I'll go through the iTunes list of the most popular downloads and sample them, figuring out which ones I like and such and then I
I have been dying to get the new Christmas album from the Glee cast, (one of my most favourite shows!) and I really wanted to get it in the acceptable manner, but I just couldn't justify spending $10 on my own selfish needs right now so I...borrowed it. Yeah.
It doesn't disappoint either! I think it'll be my go-to Christmas music for this year! The kids and I especially liked their rendition of Jingle Bells, and it has some of my favourite Christmas tunes on there, such as O Holy Night, and Baby It's Cold Outside.
I also looked up Katy Perry's latest album, and that's when I came across this video. I'm not one for watching videos really, but I really like this one. It has a message to it, and isn't random garbage for once with artsy-fartsy stuff or gratuitous boob flashing and hip thrusting. It also doesn't seem to have anything in it that I wouldn't want my own kids to hear or see. Even the girl that strips to her undies is not in a sexual context.
Short post today, hope you enjoy the video!
Thursday, November 18, 2010
My mood hasn't helped. I kinda feel a little bit like how I do right before my Aunt comes to visit. But it's not that time. So I'm not sure what's up with that. But little things are bugging me, and DH is getting on my nerves, as he often does when I'm in this mood. For as long as I can remember, he always takes another side when I'm complaining about something, or telling him about an issue. It doesn't seem to matter what we're talking about, work, the kids, or something I saw on the news, anything, he always takes the other side. That is so annoying!! I know that he is just trying to present another POV, but sometimes I'd really like for him to just agree with me and to sympathize, or even rant with me! Sometimes it makes me want to scream at him, "You aren't helping with my mood!"
So this morning L came downstairs and seemed in a giggly mood, which is a nice change. He was also sporting a mohawk, something he'd obviously been creating in front of the bathroom mirror before coming downstairs. I laughed and started to chase him around the house, trying to get in a few hugs and kisses and trying to enjoy his rare good morning mood. This turned into a bit of a pillow fight, in which he grabbed a few throw pillows from the couch and tried to hit me with them. Of course, I didn't let him, and got in a few light (very light) hits myself. He was laughing, and so was I. At one point, I tossed a pillow to him (not hard) and this dark look came over his face. It was like watching Bruce Banner turn into the Incredible Hulk. He screamed at me, "YOU MESSED UP MY MOHAWK!!" and whipped the pillow at my face, which actually did hurt a little.
I tell you, it was like night and day. One minute we're giggling and having fun, the next minute he's demon child. And I would expect that a little if I had inadvertently hurt him, but I know I didn't, I barely tossed the pillow at him. And there were no sharp zippers or buttons on it, so I am positive it wasn't a pain thing.
I took him from the room and told him that sort of behaviour wasn't acceptable, and that was way too hard to be throwing a pillow, as we were just having fun and playing around.
How did it go from light-hearted and fun, to me having to practically yell at him?? Every morning I end up mad at him for something, usually taking too long to get ready, so I was thinking how refreshing it was that we were having fun for once. Why did he have to ruin it? It made me wonder if he has some kind of mood disorder.
When DH came down I told him what had happened. And instead of sympathizing, or offering to talk to him, what does he say? He blamed it on a hormonal surge!
And he didn't mean my hormones either. He meant L's.
I say again, WHAT??
The kid is not even 7 yet.
He said, "I remember getting that feeling when I was a kid."
Umm, ok, whatever. Maybe when you were 12!
I said that even if that were true, it wouldn't excuse that behaviour.
It's like he is trying to take another side and he's reaching for explanations.
So that made my mood dampen.
Then another child arrived. Now the other day, I was expressing to DH how this father brings his child in, who is a just-walking baby and allows her to climb into the house herself. This is all very sweet and all, and a great step towards independance, but I'm sorry, sometimes you can't allow for independance, especially when someone else's heating bill going up is the result of it! He stands there with the door open for ages waiting for her to get herself in the door!
So it was suggested that if it happened again, that I say something gently, before the snow comes and it really has an effect on the heat.
As he opened the door, I put a smile on my face and wished them good morning, and said, "Come on in (child's name), quick, quick, before all the heat goes outside!"
Now wouldn't you take that as a hint if you were the parent? I know I would!
But no, what does the dad say?
He actually scoffed,"Oh, it's not that cold out!"
Excuse me, but is he the one paying my bill? I think not. It totally pissed me off. But I tried not to show it, and asked jokingly if he hadn't turned the heat on in his house yet. He said, of course, but he didn't think he had it as warm as I did. What was that supposed to mean? That if I wanted a warmer house, then it was my own fault when other people caused the bill to rise? Or what? Because that's the way I took it. I calmly informed him that I keep the heat set at 21C. That's all.
So now I don't know what else to do. You know me, I hate confrontation, but I really can't allow him to hold the door open wide for a solid minute while he waits for his daughter to climb in all winter long. Especially when the wind is howling and snow is blowing around! I'm thinking maybe I'll have to speak to the mother about it, maybe have her say something, I don't know. I guess that is the coward's way out. Maybe I'll send out a general note asking all the parents to remember to enter and exit quickly? But that seems kind of stupid, especially since I've never done that before. Perhaps I'll just quickly meet them at the door, and pull her in myself.
Not too long after, it was time to get ready so I hustled two babies and six kids to the door to get ready. Of course, the youngest baby had pooped, but there was no time for changing at that point. Why do they always choose the worst times to poop?
Upon returning home, I picked up said baby and whisked her off to the change table, only to discover leakage that was now also all over my sweater! Gross! This baby's diaper was so full there is no way that the mother had changed her diaper this morning! Either that of she drank a GIANT bottle before coming here. And I mean, like, at least a half litre. It takes a lot of pee to make a Pampers leak.
Sigh. That was my current favourite sweater too. The one I had saved for wearing today, what's supposed to be the coldest day of the week. And I always hope to wear my sweaters twice, as it cuts down on laundry and also makes them last longer. I only got to wear it for a couple of hours.
So now I'm feeling rather grumpy. The youngest baby is whining (she's really rather a whiny little thing), the other one won't let me leave her sight (as the appearance of the younger one somehow turns her into a cling-on) but at least the girls are behaving.
I'm also stressed out because tonight was supposed to be P/T conferences. I specifically signed up for later interviews for tonight because of our crazy evening schedules, and because both DH and I want to be there. But now L's teacher needed to reschedule tonight's due to a death in her family, so DH can't come, and R can't even come to his own because his Cub troop is going to a local hockey game. And don't even get me started on how stressed I am about that. Large crowds and children on the cusp of independance make me nervous. I already emailed the leader about making sure he doesn't get to go to the bathroom or snack bar alone. Too many weirdos out there! Anyhow, I hate going to P/T stuff alone, because DH is so much more aggressive and forceful than I am. And L's teacher is a bit of a flake, so she needs to be
God, I'm a wimp, huh?
Well that's it for my rant today. Hopefully I haven't bored you to tears, or made you want to slap me for whining so much.
Tuesday, November 16, 2010
I know that returning to school as a full-time mature student is tough. Our brains don't pick up new information or retain it as well as they did when we were young. I know that you have to study more, and harder to get good grades and learn all the necessary knowledge for your diploma. I understand all of this.
And that is why when you disappear off to the bedroom for hours at a time at night to "study" or "do your homework" I look the other way. I carry on with the daily household chores on my own, look after our children on my own, and do what I can to make sure you have the time you need to complete your schoolwork. Even though I worked all day from 7 in the morning until 5 in the evening looking after other people's children and I'm bone tired and my patience has just about run out, I still carry on, because I am trying to be a supportive wife.
When you start your school day at 11 a.m. and you have completed all your schoolwork the night before, I'm sorry but that DOES NOT give you the right to sit on your ass and play Wii games until you need to leave.
Look around you. Do you not see that the carpet is covered in lint and god knows what else, and that the goddamn vacuum is sitting right there in front of your damn face because I got it out a few days ago but didn't get to it? Do you not see the mildew growing in the toilet because I'm sorry, I'm too tired at 8:30 at night to start cleaning bathrooms? Do you not see the load of dishes in the sink waiting to be cleaned from the meal that I cooked last night and once again had to listen to my kids complain about it and whine, "How much more do I have to eat?" and didn't receive even a word of thanks or praise for making it? Did you not see me gathering the sheets from the beds and putting them in the laundry, meaning, duh, the beds now need to be made up with fresh sheets? Do you not realize that the groceries are running out and that your extra time could be spent running to the grocery store and picking up a few things so I don't have to drag two whiny kids out later at the end of my long day (and probably in the rain at this point)? Are you completely blind, or just stupid?
I find it hard to believe that you are that stupid, seeing as how you are maintaining A's in college, which leads me to to the conclusion that you may be blind, but you must be pretty talented to be playing Wii without vision.
So maybe you just don't care. Which begs the question, do you not care about the state of the house, or do you not care about me? Because truly, if you sat and thought about all I do, and cared enough to try to make life just a little bit easier for me, you would at least do something.
Maybe you'll care enough when you're out of clean clothes, fresh food and you can't tell if it's the floor that's making your socks dirty, or your socks that are making the floor dirty. Perhaps you'll care if the Wii is accidentally "broken" during a cleaning mishap, or the tv was "knocked over" rendering it useless.
Monday, November 15, 2010
Yesterday the kids went to see the new movie, Megamind. R went to a birthday party at the theatre, so we decided to take L and a friend as well. L had a couple of gift certificates that he was given last year for his birthday, so he got to pick a friend to take, as it was free!
Now, after seeing and loving many of Dreamworks animated movies, I was looking forward to seeing this and quite frankly I expected big laughs from this movie.
And it was entertaining. A good way to pass the afternoon, but it wasn't...great. I laughed way harder at Shrek, Madagascar and Monsters vs. Aliens. Most of the funny parts are in the trailers, but I did give a little chuckle here and there. It got pretty slow during the middle too, almost as if they didn't know where to take the film next.
The part that totally turned me off though was this:
The villain is holding the heroine hostage on top of a building. She looks at him and tells him that he doesn't need to do this, that she just knows there is good in him (yeah that line's been overdone). He scoffs and says that is her problem, always seeing the good in people even when it isn't there, that she is naive and trusting. He then goes on to say (and I'm quoting only from memory here, but it's pretty close I believe), "Well I've got news for you! There is no Tooth Fairy, no Easter Bunny and no Queen of England!"
At that point I stopped watching and listening to glance around me horrified. Thankfully the kids didn't seem phased. I turned to DH and whispered that I couldn't believe they just said that!
I suppose in retrospect that in saying that there is no Queen of England made the whole statement a lie, or at least maybe that's what they were hoping the kids would think. But many of the kids that are seeing this film are at that age where they are on the cusp of still believing and not too sure if it's all true. Being so close to Xmas, thank God they didn't mention Santa Claus! I would think a statement like that could possibly put the question of "Is there? Or isn't there?" into their minds if it never occurred to them to question it before. And some kids were very young, like 3 or 4, so how would they understand the joke? All they would hear would be "there is no..."and wouldn't even know anything about the queen of England. I'm not going to get into a debate here about the issue of taking such a young child to a PG movie, as every family and child is different. Some can handle it, some can't and hopefully the parents recognize that. But I can see why they would take them. Dreamworks has put out many great movies such as Shrek and Madagascar, movies I would have let my 4 year old watch. So they have set a precedent with these films, and we trust in that filmmaker not to disappoint or lead us astray. I wouldn't have thought twice about taking my 4 year old, had I had one, after all, I didn't give a second though to taking two six year olds. They do give the film a PG rating, but everything is marketed to the younger set! Why do they confuse us this way? And why oh why would you go ahead and blurt out in the middle of a kids' movie that there is no tooth fairy or Easter bunny?!?!?!!
I still don't know R's take on it all as it's one of those things that you can't really bring up without giving yourself away. I'm hoping that if he wants to discuss it, he will, and out of earshot of his younger brother.
But parents be warned! You may want to take your younger ones out to the bathroom when you see the heroine get flown up to the top of the tower near the end.
Monday, November 8, 2010
My Latest Obsession
I think I've found my new shopping obsession.
Last year, as I blogged about here, I took R skiing for the first time and he loved it. It also renewed my love of the snow sport and R begged and bugged me for the rest of the winter for A) skis of his own, and B) to take him again. I wasn't about to go out and purchase new skis for him based on a one-time thing, and we never did get out again last year.
This year, I've got my shit together and we went to not only one ski swap (where you can buy and sell used ski and snowboard equipment) but TWO! We purchased skis, boots and poles for R and I both, as well as boots for L (a friend gave us skis) as well as helmets and goggles for all three of us. The helmets and goggles are not used of course, but usually at the swaps the resort has their own shops open and apparel and stuff on sale.
I also bought the kids skiing lessons, a set of four lessons, two hours at a time, four days in row right after Xmas. During their lesson I'll do my own skiing, or maybe I'll take a lesson too, I haven't decided yet.
Can I tell you, I am soooo excited for the snow to start! And now I'm all worried too. What if the kids are sick that week? What if it's raining, and there's no snow, which is a very real possibility? I didn't think to ask at the time (DUH!)
As we were shopping for the helmets, we couldn't find one for L so headed out to a somewhat local store called Skiis and Biikes. I'd never been there before, but upon entering I felt like I had died and gone to outerwear heaven! You know how much I love to shop for outerwear (or if you don't, then click the link). There were coats and snowpants of every colour, size and pattern! There were gloves, mittens and matching hats everywhere! And then, the skis, oh the the skis and assorted paraphernalia! SO COOL! So pretty. So expensive.
After finding a helmet for L, I took the sales-guy's advice and went to look at thermal underwear. HOLY! Guess I'll be shopping elsewhere for that! Then I found a pair of really thin gloves that you wear under your normal gloves (perfect for me because my hands are ALWAYS cold!).
$35? Um, no thanks.
So if anyone feels generous and wants to give me a gift card for Xmas, you know where to go!
Thursday, November 4, 2010
She is the younger sister to X. You know, the
Can I just say here though that if I was five, I would NEVER have been friends with her! And I'm pretty sure that as she gets older and becomes a teen, I wouldn't be hanging out with her then, either. She'll probably be one of those bitches that laughs at you because you're wearing last year's styles, or because your hair won't cooperate or something.
Somedays I just have to shake my head at the way she treats her friends here. She directs the play, she expects them to play that way, and if they don't want to, they're shunned. If they try to get her to play one of their games, or try to get her attention and she doesn't feel like answering she completely ignores them! They'll call her name over and over and over again until I'm freaking annoyed and have to scream at her
The Drama Queen
This one is a little strange. She's hard to describe, but I'll do my best. She's an only child to two older parents, meaning, I think that they were in their late 30's when they had her, because I'm fairly sure they're well into their 40's now.
I do believe that she is the centre of her daddy's universe. When she first started attending daycare here, it would take practically hours to get her dad to leave. The goodbyes were dragged out and extended well beyond an acceptable amount of time. Her mom is/was bad too, but her dad was worse. It's like he couldn't fathom the thought that his little girl would be upset that she wasn't with him. And if you have kids or work with kids and have ever left your kids with someone else, you have to know that dragging out these goodbyes makes it so much worse on everyone. If your kid's going to cry, they're going to cry, and you poking your head back in the door fifty thousand times isn't going to stop that.
Physically she's pretty cute too. Brown spiral-curly hair, and these awesome hazel eyes. She's still got a little baby fat lurking around, and I'm thinking that her mother is going to have to be very careful with her diet over the next few years, as, well, let's just say she's genetically pre-disposed to being obese.
Personality-wise, she has a few little quirks. To start with, it took her an abysmally long time to adjust to daycare, not helped at all by her parents. Longer than normal for mostly every single kid I've watched. When she was two, she used to eat chalk. At first, I thought it was that babies-put-everything-in-their-mouths thing hanging around a little too long. But after many times of me telling her that it wasn't appropriate to eat the chalk, she was still doing it. We moved on to time-outs, which didn't work and only lead to her hiding away in the corner to secretly fulfill her obsession. Finally much to the disappointment of the other children who enjoyed the chalk in a non-nutritional way, I had to put it away. I also started googling "chalk eating".
When she was three, she had a strange idiosyncrasy that involved anything belonging to her. She refused to bring any personal belongings to daycare (which is weird because I couldn't stop most of the kids from bringing all their favourite toys here) and this even included her bag with her spare clothes in it! This stretched in a weird way to her art work. In the same way that she didn't want her belongings here, she also didn't want to create anything here, effectively making it hers. She had a freak-out one day when I asked if she wanted to paint, which of course I never force anyone to do if they don't want to. It was strange because only a few weeks ago she was loving arts and crafts. For the next few months, me getting out supplies for art time was seriously stressful for her, even though I never made her do it. I always stressed that it was her choice completely if she wanted to participate.
After the chalk-eating seemed to go away, it became playdough eating. At least this stuff is actually edible, but still, yuck. So incredibly salty that most kids puke after eating only a little. This is still one we're struggling with some days. She tries to be sly and nonchalant, but I know she's licking her fingers.
These days her inner drama queen has erupted full force. She "pretends" to be scared of the most ridiculous things, including teary eyes and all. This causes her friends to be concerned and effectively garners their attention. She doesn't really try it out on me, because she knows that I know she's putting on a show. There's no way a five year old is suddenly afraid of box sitting on the floor of my office that's been there for years and houses nothing but office supplies. (A box? Really? And it's not like a big box either, just a plain old banker's box.) She's going to be that girl in high school who pretends to get migraines, or "faints" during gym class, or uses crutches for a "broken toe" just to get a little sympathy and attention.
I will say, however, that she is a very sweet kid. Since she got over her strange aversion to bringing stuff here, she has always been more than generous when sharing her toys, to the point of being a poster child for sharing. She's also great at cleaning up when told, and she generally thinks of the other's feelings before her own, which is pretty good for five. She's quite sensitive, so maybe that's why. She loves it when you give her a task to complete, as she thrives on the attention she gets at being singled out.
I do feel sorry for her mother though, when she becomes a teen. Her mood swings are mercurial now!
As much as the Princess is blond, this one is a dark-haired beauty. She has long, glossy, dark hair and deep brown eyes. She also has an olive complexion, to complete the Mediterranean look. This little one is a bit of an enigma. She too is an only child. Her parents are also in their early 40's and have no intentions of producing any more offspring. You'd think that like the Drama Queen's parents they'd treat her as if she shit gold bricks, but they don't. Her mother is the one I see 99% of the time, and who I get the feeling is the main parent here. She is fairly good with being firm and consistent with her and often looks to me for advice that she actually takes. (This in itself is unusual as most parents when asking for advice just want me to tell them what they want to hear, and then if I don't they usually don't bother to take my advice.)
In the past, I've always found most single children to be rather forward and self-confident. They usually talk up a storm, and make their opinions known loud and clear. This isn't to say that children with siblings aren't like this, it's just more the norm with singlets. However, as her nickname suggests, the Doormouse isn't like this at all. She's been coming to my house on a daily basis now for four years, and still won't speak to me when she comes in the door! She has barely said a handful of words EVER to DH, who she also sees daily due to the fact that she arrives at 7 a.m. It took her a very long time to even begin speaking to me when she finally did start talking at all (later than many kids). She is shy, reserved, and speaks to adults (note: adults) barely above a whisper. She is very cooperative and quick to do as she's told 99% of the time (every kid has their days, right?) and almost always defers to either Queen or Princess. She really is very mouse-like, and at times, almost a door-MAT. She isn't very assertive or aggressive. She'd sooner put her own needs aside out of fear of, well, many things. Standing up for herself, or asking for something, or telling someone to knock it off. Not at all what you would expect from a singlet of two very emotional, exuberant, out-going and often LOUD Italian parents!
As a teen, I imagine she'll suddenly come out of her shell and be rebellious. I'm thinking she'll spend most of her childhood being the good girl that she is, reach high school, and become goth, or today's equivalent of the rocker/smokers that used to hang out at the back doors of the school. Or maybe she'll continue to be the sweet Catholic girl she is now, saving her virginity for marriage and never uttering a single blasphemy. I know her mother hopes so!
So those are my three girls. I don't think I could have asked for three more individual girls! They not only look completely different from one-another, they also have three very distinct personalities. Maybe one day I'll profile my boys, if this didn't bore you to death!
Monday, November 1, 2010
Monday, October 25, 2010
As we were out shopping on the weekend, I was thinking about all the specialized parking spots. Of course, there have always been handicapped parking spots, and more recently in the last ten years, spots for parents with young children, or spots for expectant mothers.Saturday while we were at the bank I saw a sign for parking for senior citizens. Now what is with that?? I can certainly see why we need spots for handicapped people, and I can appreciate the closer spots for parents with young children, but now we have spots for seniors? Come on.
For the most part, seniors are adults aged 60 and up. In some places it's 65, others it's 60. Do we really need to reserve some of the best spots for these people? Granted, some seniors have mobility problems and for them, I am most willing to let them have the closer spots. But as far as I know, most of the people in this group already have handicapped parking signs. The seniors that are not mobility-challenged don't need to have spots reserved for them. They can walk like the rest of us poor schmoes and like the rest of us poor schmoes, they probably could do with the exercise. The same thoughts go towards expectant mothers. If you are headed out to the shopping mall, chances are you're in for a lot of walking anyway, so a few more metres to your car is not going to kill you.
I know this all sounds really contrite, but at some point it's going to be getting ridiculous. One day, we may see signs like this:
- Parking reserved for 40 year old virgins, because they can't catch a break otherwise.
- Parking reserved for people whose asshole bosses watch every second they take of break time, and who only have a half hour lunch to run around and accomplish the 48 million tasks they need to accomplish during the day and have no time after work because they're too busy running kids to sports and other events so every second counts.
- Parking reserved for people who weigh over 300 pounds, because they can't move their fat asses any farther than they have to. (Hopefully this doesn't offend, but if it does, sorry, but this is MY blog.)
The list could go on and on. Our society has an oxy-moronic attitude towards health and exercise. On one hand, we are being told that as a society we are becoming less fit and more obese. We are being encouraged through various media to get up and get moving.
On the other hand, marketing and consumerism tells us to take the easy road. Everything is constantly being made easier to use, with less effort. And now, we are being handed parking spots closer to the door for rather mundane reasons.
Here's my idea. Reserve some parking spots at the back of the parking lots. Here's what their signs will say:
- Parking reserved for people who want to live past 65.
Friday, October 22, 2010
Next week I was supposed to be off. I was supposed to be going on vacation to Florida, where we would visit Disney for the first time (for the boys). It didn't work out. And now we are stuck with Air Miles airline tickets that my dad graciously gave us and having to fake an illness soon so we can get a doctor's note to get the air miles (and some money) back. There's no other way, trust me. However, since I am a terrible liar and I feel guilt waaaaayyy too much, I am sending DH to the clinic tomorrow or Sunday to make up a story about being sick all night or whatever.
So I am bummed because I keep thinking about how this time in a few days we would have been having the time of our lives. I've got to stop that.
I wish I could tell you all the reason why we can't go, but I can't for now although those of you that know me best will already know. Things just haven't been progressing like we had hoped.
I was paying bills today and that also bums me out.
Every. Single. Time.
But the bill situation and the other unmentionable situation are linked directly and I don't know why I mentioned that but there you go.
So now, something positive. I must remember that despite my situations, we are all healthy, we have a roof over our heads, warm clothes and food to eat. We also have friends and family that love us.
So for next week, I told all the parents that I was "open" once again, and that they could send their kids if they hadn't made alternate arrangements. And can you believe that every single family is sending their kids at least a few days?! I guess no one made alternate arrangements. Perhaps they were all waiting for me to cancel my plans, or they were just planning on calling in sick to work for the week, I don't know. So while I am glad that I will once again be making some money, I am still sad that I won't be getting a vacay.
Now for the positive part. As it turns out, I will get to go on a school trip to the zoo with L, since DH is off for the week (his break from school which is why we chose that week originally for a holiday) he will look after the other kids that day *hee hee doing a little dance*. We also don't have to miss the Beavers/Cubs trip to the farm next week either. I was also supposed to be going on a school trip with R, but that one got cancelled :(
DH has been EXTREMELY busy this week with studying. Here's the part about being the supportive wife. It's hard. So hard. He hasn't been around much at all. Most mornings he has left by 8 or even 7, and hasn't been returning until the boys are in bed. They've barely seen him. Then last night, he went to a school friend's cottage for the night to "celebrate the end of exams and relax."
Well, must be nice for him.
I am really really trying to not be a bitch about this. Really I am. I am trying to think of it from his POV and I'm trying to be happy that he has some friends and is being social, because we both suffer from that equally (the lack of friends and consequent lack of social life). But seriously?? I am under just as much stress and pressure as he is here. When he is gone, I have to pick up the slack. I am dealing with kids almost 24/7 (not counting sleeping hours, I guess, although technically even though they are old enough to be sleeping through the night I am still responsible for them). I am suffering from all the same stresses regarding our finances, the "situation" and the consequences of said "situation", the vacation ordeal and day-to-day stuff. So when do I get my "relaxation" and celebration? Huh? Does it ever occur to him that I need away time too? It's not like he's said I can't have away time, it's just...I don't know...he didn't even ask me if it was ok if he went away. He just stated it.
"I'm going away."
So next week, he sure as shit isn't going to be sitting around on his ass playing Wii or going to meet the guys for drinks. He is going to have a list a mile long of things he needs to do, or he's going to hear about it. And I'm starting that list today.
Incidentally, I am getting away for a small amount of time on Sunday. A couple of the moms from Beavers/Cubs and I are going to the movies to see that one about the couple that gets custody of a baby. Some comedy. I can't remember the name of it. At this point, it could be a documentary on the Civil War for all I care, as long as I get to get out of this F**ing house without kids!!! So I get a few hours at least of away time.
Well, at least today is Friday, that is something to be happy about. And I don't have X today, so there's another positive. I don't have him until next Wed, yay!
Thursday, October 14, 2010
I have the worst luck with having a crap. (You're about to close this window, aren't you? I'm not going to describe anything, don't worry. But go ahead and close it if you don't want to read more.) Its all because of my stupid schedule. At 6:00 am I get up every morning. By 7:00 I am greeting the first child that comes through the door. Then it's on to making lunches, making breakfasts, greeting more children and possibly (if I'm lucky) eating my own high fiber breakfast. I need the fiber because, well, you know what this post is about.
At some point during this busy morning, my body will start to call out to me to attend to certain needs. It's not often I can gratify those needs. Take today, for example. I finally have a bite to eat, look at the clock and stupidly assume I may actually have a few moments before the next kid shows up. I go upstairs, sit down and, damn, was that a knock?
Yes. Yes it was. I hoist my pants back up and run down the stairs trying to not look like I am extremely frustrated about this person showing up waaaaaaaay earlier than expected and crap-blocking me.
So I admit the new little person who is indeed, new. She is crying and wailing for her mama, so I can't possibly just dump her and run to, well, have a dump of my own.
So I wait, and my colon is saying, "Really?"
Not long after, I am having to take the children to school and upon return I once again check the clock. My colon is saying, "Yes, please do." But alas, the time shall not be now, for another child is due to arrive at any moment. My colon says, "Excuse me, but I've also got something due to arrive at any moment!" I anxiously peer out the window, trying to catch a glimpse of any car coming down the street, trying to time it out - even if they were at this moment driving down the street, I could still possibly have a whole minute to attend to business. I mean that's plenty of time isn't it?
My colon is now threatening me with legal action.
These people are late! Where are they? Don't they know I need to use the bathroom? How would they like it if I showed up at their house while they were mid-dump?
After the arrival of said child I try again to sneak away from the children for a moment's peace. I sit down and there is a cry from downstairs, "JENN!"
Ok, I wish. I hastily do what I can with the three seconds I have before chaos ensues, and go back downstairs. My colon is not very relieved but has been slightly appeased for the moment. It grumbles at me, and I rub my tummy soothingly.
Later, the children are finally in bed for a nap, and although they aren't yet quiet I know that at least they are safe and separated (so they can't maul each other in my absence) and I can finally sit and get down to some business.
Grabbing my iPod, I head to my favourite retreat and relax on the throne.
Nothing is happening. My colon is saying, "You made me wait this long, so now I'm not going to cooperate! Hah! So there!"
However, I am finally getting to relax a bit so I stay where I am in hopes that my colon might change its mind. Just as I think things might be starting to move again, the phone rings.
It turns out to be one of the parents calling me to inform me I needn't pick their child up from school today, they are going home with a friend. Good thing I answered the phone, that's need-to-know info.
I settle back into the bathroom again, and damnit, the phone rings again. This time, it's my dad, and he and I have a heart-to-heart. By the time the conversation is finished, my colon has packed its bags and is moving to Alaska. Or Hawaii. I don't know, it didn't leave a note.
I sigh as I look at the toilet.
Perhaps tomorrow I'll have better luck.
Tuesday, October 12, 2010
Last week was not a good week. There were a bunch of things that happened, one of them being that we found out that we can't actually take a trip that we were so hoping to take. Regardless, that's not the part of the bad week I was going to write about. Just something that added to it.
I look after a bunch of kids, as you know, and there is one child in particular that has been a bee in my bonnet (or wasp in my pant leg, since this IS the new millenium and as I'm not Amish I do not wear a bonnet!) We'll call him X. X has been with me since he was almost three. He is now 9. Ever since L could move independently, he and X have clashed. X has "had it in for him" for his entire life. Almost like it's been his personal life's goal to make L's life as miserable as he can. He teases him, fights and argues with him, provokes and taunts him, and just generally does everything within that vague circle of allowable limits that he can do to pester him. And there's the odd time that he gets physical with him too.
At first, in the early years, I chalked it up to #1) immaturity on X's part, and #2) jealousy felt on X's part at having to share my other son R. I always thought that he didn't like that R loved L more than him, or something like that. I also always tried to be objective; to hide that mother bear instinct to immediately rage at and throttle anyone who dared to make my child cry. I tried to see L as another kid I cared for, without special treatment and to allow him to find his own way through it. I tried to give him his own chances to stand up to X or to find acceptable coping strategies and conflict resolution. I've never wanted to say, "It's all his fault" (X's), because I fully realize that it takes two to argue or fight.
I had hoped that X would grow out of it eventually. I mean, every kid has to grow up and mature at some point right? I see it in many of R's friends, and R himself. They are growing past the petty fighting and bickering. They are all starting to be able to see beyond themselves and to look at the "big picture". They can put themselves in another's point of view without having to be reminded to do so. They are starting to see when to let things go, and what's worth fighting over and what's not. As a side note, I am LOVING this age! Nine is wonderful! R is (mostly) compliant, helpful and generally a joy to be around. But apparently that doesn't apply to all nine-year-olds.
So here it what happened last week. It was a beautiful afternoon, and I had quite a few children under my care after school. A 15-month-old, a 26-month-old, one 4-yr-old, three 5-year-olds, my own two (6.5 and 9) and X. To say I was a little taxed in my patience is being generous. It started off by L, X and the 4 and a 5 year old making some sort of obstacle course involving the slide, and several pieces of equipment in my backyard. Well, actually it was L who was making it, the others were watching. L was getting frustrated as the 26 mos old kept trying to steal away some of the obstacles, so he was already ramped up. I was being run off my feet, as usual, getting snack, sorting fights, and looking after the youngest. My patience was also rather short due to a severe depletion from having my newest little one visit that morning (she cried and cried if that says anything, poor thing.) When L had finally completed his course, he claimed he would be the first to try. Fair enough. The one who made it should be the one to try first. Laws of the playground. The 4 and 5 year olds (brothers incidentally) agreed and were waiting patiently for their turn. X however, decided that he was going to go first no matter what. It didn't matter that L was screaming at him "NO!" or even that the brothers were also telling him to wait. It didn't matter that L was climbing up the slide (the starting point of the course) effectively blocking X from going down and beginning. It didn't matter that L was extremely upset, in tears even because he knows X so well and knew that he would do his darndest to get what he wanted. I don't even know what the attraction was for him. It wasn't even challenging to a much taller 9-year-old. But the fact that it was of no great feat to "beat" this obstacle course, or that he was playing with children much younger than him instead of seeking out R didn't make a damn bit of difference to X. He was going to go no matter what, and go he did. He hopped around L and completed the course in less than two seconds, cheering as if he'd won a gold medal at the Olympics while L screamed at him and the brothers shouted that he was being annoying and unfair. At that point, they refused to "play" with him, which you'd think would be enough of a lesson (peer pressure can be powerful!) but not for X. He continued to be his obnoxious self and tried to be as intrusive and annoying as possible, hopping through the course as the others were trying to complete it and just genterally getting in the way.
And what did I do during all this, you may ask? Nothing, aside from a few verbal warnings to X to quit it. And herein lies part of my dilemma. I've always felt and run my daycare by being an observer. I have always tried not to jump in and solve the children's problems for them. I think they need to learn how to deal with them on their own. So if there is fighting, but no one is being hurt, I don't usually jump in. Part of that is also that I can't stand the whining and tattling, so I ignore it as best I can. I guess I shut down a little too much.
I'm sure the mothers out there are going, why didn't you stick up for your son, and help him? Put X in time-out or something? And the answer is in a few parts. Part one, see above. Part two, I'm soooooooo tired of it! I'm so sick of the fighting between these two that I just don't want to hear it anymore. I don't want to deal with it, so I don't. I know, it's selfish of me, and mean, and last week I would have said I didn't care anymore but this week I'm seeing a new light and I've learnt my lesson. I'm getting to that part. And part three is that I just don't know how to punish a 9 year old. Time outs are for toddlers; for children that have not yet learned to control their tempers, like my 26-month-old. I rarely have to punish any of the other kids EVER, so I must be doing something right, right? I have no authority to take away cherished possessions or privileges, which is how I punish my own children. The privileges at daycare are limited. They don't have computer time, tv time or video game time in general (occasionally but not often enough for it to make a difference to take it away). So how do I punish him, other than telling his parents and leaving it up to them? Which is fairly ineffective, as I've seen.
But I must get on with this story. That's right, my friends, it's not over yet! The climax is yet to come. And then I will reveal my true dilemma.
At some point, the fighting was forgotten (as it seems to go with boys) and the four were somewhat playing together again. This time it was my ever-hated-least-favourite game of all that they play, sword fighting. Or some sort of weapon. They gather up all the plastic sporting equipment (bats, golf clubs, lacrosse sticks, etc.) and run around the yard using the two play structures as "bases" and the sporting equipment as weapons. This is why I hate looking after boys. They are so violent all the time. I fought against this sort of play for so long. I became tired of the fight. A part of me realized that it's genetically ingrained in boys to play this way, to work through their long buried hunting instincts by playing aggressively. There needed to be some outlets, such as this game, or the real fighting escalates and they start wrestling, which I hate EVEN MORE!
So now, I let them. But at some point during the game, as I was talking to one of the moms of the sweet little girls I look after, L hurled or either his hand slipped off one of his "weapons" and of course landed on X. X immediately began to cry like a baby because of course he should, I mean he's ONLY nine, right? The crying was extremely forced and whiny, which I can't stand so I mostly ignored him. My standard statement is, "If you guys are going to play that game, someone ALWAYS gets hurt, you know that, so I've told you don't cry to me about it! If you don't want to get hurt, don't play that game!!" The mom just chuckled and we continued our conversation. I'm not sure how the fight began, but the next thing I knew, L was attacking X by running at him. X defended himself and then proceeded to attack L. The mom alerted me to this fact and I, like the amazing childcare giver that I am,
OMG. I am the worst mother in the world for letting this happen.
I immediately bid her goodbye, grabbed L and the baby and made for inside, telling X to sit his butt down on the deck and not move from that spot until his mother arrived. L's nose had been badly bumped by X's knee and was bleeding. I didn't want to apply pressure, because I was scared it was broken. So I put a kleenex under it, and a bag of frozen corn niblets over it, and made L sit there for 20 mins like that while I obsessed that my child would be damaged for life and it was ALL MY FAULT!
When X's mother finally arrived to pick him and his sister up, L didn't hesitate to let her know just what her son had done. I elaborated, explaining generally how the afternoon had gone and that they had ended up in a physical fight. I downplayed the fact that it was all X's fault, and allowed that some of it was L's fault too. I never want to be one of those parents who thinks that their child can do no wrong. I also never want to make anyone else feel like they're a bad parent either. I can't imagine arriving at daycare or the school to pick up my kid and being told that they alone had caused and instigated a fight, that essentially they were an evil little shit-disturber! Dealing with this sort of thing (telling parents about the bad stuff their kids did) is one of the worst parts of this job, mostly because I put myself in their shoes too much.
X's mother asked me, "Did you punish him?" Ummmmm....not sure how you want me to do that? Any ideas lady? I sat him on the deck, which is where he thankfully stayed, but that's about it.
So now my dilemma. I have debated for years about what to do with this child. My sister N has told me several times to "fire" him. But it's more complicated than that. Firstly, it's difficult for me to say, "I'm sorry, your child has no place in this daycare anymore due to his behaviour." Part of it would be sort of like admitting defeat, telling everyone that I can't handle the children the way I should be able to. Plus I would hate to be on the receiving end of that statement, so I can't do that to someone. Secondly, he has a younger sister who is great to look after, is very good friends with two of the other children, and would surely follow him to whatever new daycare his family found. Thirdly, his family has been with me for 6 years now, so how do I now, after all this time, say that's it? Why didn't I say something sooner? Fourthly, if he goes, I lose income and have to replace that income for not only him, but also his sister. And lastly, since I have known his family for so long, it would be so awkward. His mom is not exactly a friend, per se, but we have had many friendly conversations and "bitch" sessions, as well as I've been over to her house for tea a few times and I've used her out of desperation for my own babysitting needs or tight spots I've got in from time to time with the daycare. (I don't mean financially I just mean not being able to pick up her kids, my kids or whatever).
She emailed me today, telling me she had been thinking about it a lot, and didn't know what to do and did I have any ideas or thoughts?? Of course I do, but how do I express them without hurting her feelings? How do I tell her that she better straighten her son out today, or that's it? Oh, and by the way, leave little x here. We like her just fine. Part of me wonders if she herself has been looking for an out. Maybe she found cheaper daycare, or can find cheaper daycare and is looking to me to tell her to go, saving her the trouble of firing me. Or maybe she doesn't like me anymore. Who knows?
What I do know is this. Part of this is my fault. I should never have stood by and let them "fight it out". I am damn lucky (and so is L) that L's nose wasn't broken. At least I'm pretty sure it wasn't. I will be vigilant from this day forward to immediately jump in and break up any sort of argument or fight between the two of them. And I won't hesitate to let X know he is treading on VERY thin ice.
Your thoughts? Please?
Monday, September 27, 2010
Take for example, tonight. I was putting R to bed, and as is the routine I was reading to him. Yes, he's nine now and can read to himself, but we both enjoy it and it's a nice end to the day (we do the same with L, DH and I switch back and forth between the two when we can). The usual lights-out time we aim for is 8:00, give or take a few. I was anxious tonight to watch House, one of my favourite shows. So I was trying to get it all done before then, but at the point that I said goodnight, R complained vehemently. We hadn't actually finished a chapter, and when I said I wanted to watch my show, he looked at me with glassy eyes and said that it made him feel bad.
GOD! The guilt! That I would put my own selfish needs to watch a show before him...So of course I stayed, read more of the book and missed my show. Oh well.
Then there's Mother Guilt. And I'm not talking about the same mother guilt as above, the kind when you feel guilty for every action you take in regards to your children because you feel like you're f*ing up their lives royally and feel bad for it. I'm talking about Mother Induced Guilt - my OWN mother. I'm not sure how I end up feeling guilty about the things that are wrong in her life, but I do. I guess it's because she's done so much for me in my life (raising me, taking care of me, feeding me, clothing me, giving up things to buy me stuff, being there when my own kids were born, you know, small stuff like that!) and I'm not there for her when she needs someone. It's not really possible most of the time, due to the (geographical) distance between us and time constraints. But this coming weekend I have chosen to spend my birthday weekend with the boys at their Scouting camp (DH is going too as he is a Beaver leader, and the parents are allowed to come for Beavers) instead of going to my mother's as she suggested. This decision was made partly because I still want to spend my birthday with my boys (as much as I don't wish to celebrate turning 37), we wanted to go camping this summer but never got to, and another friend/mom who said, "Awwww, come on, it'll be fun!!" Yeah, sure, spending a night in a cabin with 50 other people and one (?) washroom sounds like a
So I feel guilty about that. That once again I'm not going over to see my mom. Here's the funny thing - She has one Friday a month off. That Friday happens to fall this week (tomorrow). My birthday is Sat. She had said she was going to come see me on the weekend for my birthday, however since I've chosen to go to the camp, she obviously won't. Then I asked her about her off Friday. I asked her when it was, and she confessed that it was this week. I asked her if she would come over then, but she has to take the car in, and then she is going out to celebrate a friend's 70th birthday. So why am I feeling badly about not seeing her when A - it's my birthday and B - she's choosing to celebrate a friend's birthday over mine? Don't get me wrong, I'm not bitter about that, really, I'm not. I'm happy she has friends, and I know she really needs those relationships. Plus I am still harbouring guilt (again with the guilt) about not going to see her on her birthday this year due to a cotttage trip, so I kind of feel like I deserve it. But I just wish I could stop feeling guilty about it!!
Let's not even get started about the other kinds of guilt I feel. Guilt for having a crappy looking garden in the front of my house that doesn't look even close to as nice as anyone else on my street, guilt for throwing out things in the garbage occasionally that should have been separated for recycling, guilt for using non-environmentally friendly cleaning products, guilt for not taking my kids to the dentist, guilt for not taking them to (take your pick here), guilt for not paying more attention to the dog when he was around, guilt for not donating enough to charities, guilt for not being able to go on field trips or volunteer in the classrooms etc, etc, etc.
I once read a book about motherhood and the pressures that mothers feel in this day and age as compared to say, the 50's. It had a lot of info about guilt. It said that we need to rephrase in our heads anytime we feel guilt for things. For example, when you think, "I feel so guilty for dropping him off at school upset," you simply rephrase "I regret dropping him off at school upset" and if it makes sense to you phrasing it that way, then you take steps to change that. If not, stop the guilt and accept it for what it is. Guess I need to remember that.
Thursday, September 23, 2010
I spend hours perusing websites, dreaming about this product or that, adding things to my shopping bag and mostly never buying them.
I guess in that case it makes it a rather harmless hobby. But I worry that my frequency of pushing that purchase button is becoming, well, more frequent.
I recently had to purchase a uniform for R, who has this year finally decided to join Cub Scouts. Man oh man was I happy about that, as a part of me loves nothing more than seeing my children in uniform. What is with that? I don't know what it is, the conformity, the "matchy-matchy-ness" or just how darned cute they all look, but I love uniforms. I wish my kids went to school where they had to wear a uniform.
But I'm getting off topic.
So I had to go on the Scouting website to purchase the necessary items, which led me to perusing the not-so-necessary items. I ended up adding quite a few extras, like the travel mugs, the extra patches to sew on to their newly purchased blankets (for around the campfire), some zipper pulls, and a little stuffed beaver (for L) and a wolf cub (for R) on a key chain for their backpacks.
You see? I'm so bad.
But I do love that lovely package when it comes! The best ones are the ones that come straight to the door, but I'm good with the ones that come to the oversize mailbox (when they put that key in your regular mailbox, it's so thrilling!) or the ones that I have to go pick up at the postal outlet. Opening it up is like Christmas. Seeing all the things you purchased in reality, and not having to drag whining kids to the mall! Such a bonus!
I frequently look at my other favourite websites, Lands End.com and L.L.Bean.com. I also love Chapters.ca and Toys R Us. I often add things to a shopping bag, just to see how much it would all add up to in the end. Usually that's what stops me from pushing that buy now button. And I never have websites keep my credit card number on file, mostly for the reason that for me to make the purchase means I have to haul my lazy ass upstairs to get my wallett and credit card out, which is as much a deterrent as the huge number staring at me. This is my mistake with iTunes. My credit card is on file, which makes it oh so easy to just download new apps/songs/videos straight to my iPod.
Dangerous I tell you!
But come Christmas, my online shopping "addiction" is justified! Woohoo! I have very limited shopping time, worse now that you can't pull one over on the kids (they're just too darned smart and observant!) so I can't shop with them. And DH and I practically fight over who gets to be the one that gets to go get the gifts, seeing as how we can't go together. So I just boot up the old computer (ok, who am I kidding, it never gets turned off!) and shop to my little heart's content. Most of the online shopping sites will offer free shipping at some point, so you have to watch out for that.
Anyone care to share their favourite online shopping websites?
Friday, September 10, 2010
Wednesday was the day. The day we had to put Vader down, our "puppy" of 13 long years. I talked in a previous blog about the fact that he had a bad heart, and mostly about the expense of it all. So here we are, almost 5 months later. That was five months of very expensive heart medication! We managed to cut back on how much he needed, which saved money of course, but it was still pricey.
So the decision to finally do it came a couple of weeks ago. His cough was getting bad again (which signaled the fluid in his lungs was building up again), and he was having more fainting episodes, which was something the medications were initially helping. We knew the vet had said he would deteriorate, despite the meds, and we honestly thought he wouldn't last this long.
DH was distraught. He cried and sobbed all night long, the night before he took him. Then we had to get up and tell the boys what was happening that day. They already knew it was coming at some point, but they didn't know when. L cried a lot. R cried for less than two minutes and was over it. I wasn't surprised; he was never very attached to Vader. L cared for him more, so is missing him more. I cried a little, the day of. I find I miss him at certain times of the day. Like when we come home from being out (and he would come greet us at the door) or at lunch time (when he would come out from wherever he was sleeping and wait patiently under the table for all the food to drop from the messy children.)
It was a rather long and stressful day. This is our first experience with having to put an animal down. And not the last, I'm sure. We still have our guinea pigs, so that will be another death we will one day have to face. And I don't doubt that one day we will get another dog (although it won't be soon, and I'd really like to avoid the puppy stage if possible.)
On a completely different note, I'm sorry I haven't blogged for a while. I also haven't been reading other blogs either, so if you are one of the ones I follow, I will be catching up on your adventures soon! And since I haven't been looking, I realized today that I have two new followers, which is very exciting!! Welcome! Now I feel all this pressure to write something good. I hope I don't disappoint you.
Tuesday, August 17, 2010
So I was at the police station about to get my criminal record check done and I noticed that in the van parked beside me, a dog was shut inside. The windows were up, and the sun was out. Now I know it's not the hottest day today (25C is supposed to be the high, so it was probably about 23 at the time) but that is still hot enough for the vehicle to heat up rather quickly.
I always feel sorry for animals shut up inside cars. They can't open the window or door to cool off, and plus they are wearing a fur coat! How would we feel in that situation? Everyone knows not to leave an animal in the car during a sunny summer day.
It's not the first time I have seen this. Nor, I'm sure, will it be the last. But I've never had the guts before to really do anything about it. I'm not a trouble maker, or shit-disturber. I'm really rather a wimp. I avoid confrontation at all costs. So the thought of approaching some stranger and having words with them over this issue makes me feel a little sick and weak-kneed. Even if it is in defense of something completely defenseless.
And so my conclusion was that this time I wasn't going to be a wuss about it. I was going to "woman up" and do something about it this time. I went inside the station, and approached the desk.
Friendly-looking officer - "Can I help you?"
Me - "Well, you see I came in for my record check, and there's a dog completely shut up inside a van beside me..."
Officer - Stoney silence.
Me - Feeling rather awkward and uncomfortable.
"So, err, I was wondering if you could
Officer - "He'll be alright, no one's been in here that long."
Me - Feeling incredibly stupid and meddling by this point. I mumbled something about how I just felt sorry for the animal and went on my way.
So that's my heroic effort and how it went down. Never again will I try that. I felt so idiotic. Not to mention I'm sure the guy who owned the van heard every word and probably felt pretty smug about it. He was probably thinking, stupid cow, who does she think she is anyway?
So I'm wondering if everyone else would have done the same, or left it? Would you have carried it further, or slunk away with your proverbial tail between your legs like me?
Sunday, August 8, 2010
Now, everyone is entitled to their own opinion, of course. And I have no misconceptions about the internet world. I FULLY realize that anyone and everyone can read what I write. That is why I try to retain some anonymity if possible.
But seriously, if you are going to comment on my blog, especially if it's a negative comment, please try to be clear, concise, and above all, CONSTRUCTIVE. Tell me how to make it better, but don't be all cryptic and elusive about it. Tell me what parts you are referring to. If you want a response, let me know.
I also think, don't be a chicken shit. If you want to tell me something, then at least leave an identity of some sort. Some way of letting me respond would be nice.
I leave comments on stranger's blogs all the time. I don't leave negative comments for a few reasons. One is that if something on someone's blog offends me, I just don't read it. There's too much out there to be bothered with something I don't like.
Another reason is that I feel it takes a lot of guts to put stuff out there. As I said, I know anyone could read what I write, and most of what I write is personal and comes from the heart. I do care what people think about me, and so for me, that takes a lot of guts to write a blog. It took me ages actually, to even tell people that I had a blog. So keeping that in mind, I don't write negative things to others. Like my mother always said, "If you can't say something nice, don't say anything at all!"
Friday, August 6, 2010
Lo and behold there sat my ex-boyfriend!! Unbelievable! It's always kind of weird to see someone you know on tv, especially someone you haven't talked to for about 15 years!
I yelled to the boys, "Guys! Look! I know that guy!"
Boys: "Which guy?"
"The one playing the drums! He used to be my boyfriend, waaaaayy before I met Daddy!"
Boys: "Him? BWAHAHAHAHAHAHA!!"
Ok, I'll admit that time hasn't done him many favours. He's not one of those men that gets better with age...Poor guy. He's gained
He used to be really cute! Kind of...Doogie Howser-ish. He had a baby face, green (or was it blue? I know they weren't brown...) eyes and blond hair that was so soft when you ran your fingers through it....Oops, sorry, getting carried away there. I'll stop here with the physical descriptions...
He was the only guy I ever dated that smoked. He also drove a bad-ass black Camaro. It was his baby, and he only let me drive it once, when he was too drunk to drive it himself. Man was that fun! The car driving I mean, not the part about him being drunk. That part happened waaaaayyy too much. So much so, that I think maybe he had a bit of a problem back then. He was my bad boy phase. I went to more parties with him, snuck into more bars and drank way more than with any other boyfriend. And the fact that he was a drummer was a HUGE turn-on. There's just something about the drums that I love, and to this day I am still fascinated by anyone that can play them. I only wish.
So what happened, you say? (Or maybe not, you probably could care less.) Well, since you asked, he broke up with me on VALENTINE'S DAY! Seriously. What douche-bag breaks up with his girl on V-day? At least do it the week before. Geez.
But it was a good thing. The guy drank every penny he made, was way more interested in drinking and smoking with his buddies than seeing his girl, and had a very strange aversion to his own body fluids. Yeah. Nothing like shattering the moment by freaking out over you own ejaculate touching you. Problems.
Despite the ill-timed break-up, we remained in touch for a bit afterwards. He even came and visited me a few times in my college dorm...Yes, it was that kind of visit. But I wasn't the kind of girl by then that needed "more". I was in that phase of my life where I fully recognized the advantages of, well, satisfying one's own urges with no strings attached. So it worked to both of our benefits.
So now that I've walked down memory lane with you, I'm left wondering... What is it that makes us want to get in touch with people from our past? I now have this urge to get a hold of him, call him up or email him * and see how he's doing. I want to know things like if he's still teaching drumming, what he does for a living, does he have kids, or is he married.
*I'll admit here that I have actually tried to look him up on Facebook before.
Perhaps it's the innate tendency to show off, to brag about my life (not that there's much to brag about aside from my beautiful boys), to prove *snicker* that "I'm over him". That makes me laugh, but I think in a very small way it may be true. Don't you even kind of wonder if all your exes are "over" you, or if they're sitting around day after day pining for you, wishing they had had the good sense to smarten up and marry YOU?
LOL. Even my sister said something to that effect when I frantically called her this morning, yelling at her to turn on the tv, quick. She said, "Maybe he's on there, playing away and thinking at the same time, 'Gee I hope my ex-girlfriend Jenn see's this' " LMAO!! I seriously doubt the thought even crossed his mind.
Well, I'm off to do some
Friday, July 30, 2010
Ok, how nasty is that?!
I was innocently taking my laundry down yesterday, being the
I think you could have heard me scream ten houses over. All the boys outside with me turned to see what I was freaking out about. And being boys, of course they all wanted to touch it and save me from it...
What is wrong with boys today?? L offered to whack it with the plastic golf club, but I declined, citing that I did not wish to rewash the garment in question due to bug-gut splatter. And I didn't want to "shoo" it away with said plastic golf club, for (my intense) fear that it would fly at me. Or anywhere near me.
As luck would have it, one of the parents came along at that point. She is a brave police officer, and she even wouldn't touch it! She did, however use the badminton racket to "shoo" it, at which point it flew from one garment only to land on another. She "shooed" it again, and finally, off it went on it's merry way.
So what was it, you may ask?
Well, I didn't look it up or anything, but I'm 90% sure that it was a cicada bug. They make that odd buzzing noise you hear intermittently in the trees during this time of year. We used to find them dead in our pool sometimes when I was a kid.
Sooooo disgusting! I may never hang laundry out again, to heck with the hydro bill.
Tuesday, July 27, 2010
R had baseball yesterday, and I have never missed a game. But yesterday was a "clinic" day, which means that instead of playing a game, they had a big practice where they visit various stations to practice different skills. This is boring to watch, so I had DH take him on his own, and L and I stayed home.
About 20 mins after they left, the phone rang, and after I looked at the call display, I rolled my eyes, thinking DH was wanting to know which diamond he was on. So I was pretty shocked when I answered and he said, "We've had an accident."
Before I could start to freak out, he said that they were both ok and that I would need to come get them, as the car was now undriveable. Just how big was this accident?
After I got the location, I hung up and started scrambling to leave the house. My head felt like it wasn't attached to my body. I had washed two of our booster seat covers that day, and for some reason, I felt the need to reassemble the one that wasn't put back together yet before realizing I didn't need it. What a waste of time. All I could think was that I needed to see my baby, my son. I needed to put my own hands on him, see him with my own eyes to know that he was ok. It's not that I thought my DH was lying, or exaggerating, but it's that motherly instinct. I needed to see for myself.
As we drove the 15 mins that it took to get there, I was thinking the whole time about making it there in one piece. I was extra careful, extra vigilant of every potential threat to us.
The accident occured on a stretch of road that was posted at 80km/h. It was at the bottom of a long hill, so as I was cresting the hill, my heart in my throat and my stomach twisting in anxiety, I could see the now long line of traffic backed up. There were two lanes on our side moving very slowly, and nothing coming the other way. I could see in the distance the flashing lights of many emergency vehicles, firetrucks included.
FIRETRUCKS??! I hadn't realized that this was as bad as it was.
It was completely surreal. To be approaching an accident the way I was, stuck in the throng of cars, yet instead of being annoyed and curious, I was actually anxious to get there faster. I needed to get through in the worst way. It felt weird knowing that I was pretty much the only one who knew what was going on, what had basically happened.
I debated for a minute or two about how to get closer, finally opting for driving down the other side of the road and parking in someone's driveway. I'm sure I got many dirty looks, but I could have cared less. Besides, there was nothing coming towards us, the cars and emergency vehicles had it completely blocked off.
I threw the truck into park and yelled to L to stay put. Luckily he listens, and he was just as concerned as I was about his dad and brother. Although strangely enough, his main worry was that Daddy was going to have his license taken away, despite my reassurances that he was not going to suffer that fate.
I ran the rest of the way, tears clouding my eyes. I know they were needless, but I just had to calm the hysterical mother/wife side of me, reassure myself they were both fine.
R was still sitting in the backseat, looking calm but stunned. He was quiet, and said he was fine, but he was rather pale at the same time. Our truck was bashed in in the front, but the passenger section was ok. DH's airbag had deployed, and I can't for the life of me remember if any windows were broken. I think not, although there was a lot of glass on the ground, but that was mostly from the other two cars, especially the middle one. It was completely munched. Squished. Totalled.
So from what DH has said, he basically sneezed at the wrong time. I think a lot of things happened at the wrong time. The sun was at the wrong angle, the car in the front (there were three involved altogether) decided to turn left into a drive, it seems as though the second car probably slammed on their brakes, and DH sneezed as this was happening, causing him to crash into the back of them which in turn sent them into the person turning left. Or maybe both the front cars were turning left, I don't know. All I know is that DH swears one second it seemed there weren't that many cars around, he wasn't following too closely or being distracted by anything, and the next, BAM! He's slammed into the back of this car, the airbag has gone off, the truck is filled with this airbag dust, and the seatbelts have done their jobs.
As luck, or divine providence would have it, an ambulance happened to be passing by on the opposite side as the accident occurred. They of course, stopped immediately and assessed all the passengers of the vehicles. Despite the fact that the middle person's car was devastated, she was perfectly fine, save a little whiplash. Still, they told her to stay put (even though had she wanted to, she could have climbed out her window) and the firefighters used the Jaws of Life to open her door and retrieve her. Both front vehicle's passengers were taken by ambulance to the hospital, and they asked if we would like one too. However, we opted to go on our own, seeing as how the injuries were minor and it would probably have meant paying several hundred dollars to have that privilege.
The hospital was insanely busy. One woman waiting in triage said she had been sitting there for an hour (without even having been seen by a nurse yet or registered) and had seen about seven ambulances come in! So let's make a long story short here, and I'll just say that we waited for basically five hours before we were finally seen. At some point during that time, I took L home, got some supplies, fed the dog and dropped him off at a friend's house so he didn't have to be subject to all the fun of hospital ER's.
All in all, everyone was ok. Even the people in the other cars (as we heard via the cop). DH has a sore neck (of course) some very nice bruises from the seat belt, and a sore thumb joint, where the steering wheel rammed into his hand. R has a nasty friction burn along his neck where the seat belt was laying, and some bruising and marks around his waist area. The marks on his neck I feel are my fault. I had allowed him to be out of his booster seat in that vehicle, as he seemed tall enough for the seatbelt to lay correctly as long as he was sitting up. He was complaining of discomfort from the booster, which is why I allowed him to stop using it. In our other truck, he still has to use it, as the seatbelts don't come low enough without the booster. But now, he is going back into the booster. I don't care if he's almost nine. The nurse scared the heck out of me when she pointed out the fact that the mark from the belt lays along his jugular. She said he was very lucky to not have had it cut into that vein. Just the thought makes me shudder!
So parents, leave your kids in their boosters, despite their protests that their friends don't have to use them, or that they are uncomfortable, or that the law says that once they are eight they don't legally have to use them anymore!
Sunday, July 11, 2010
Anyhow, I'm not blogging today to apologize for not blogging. I wanted to try to clear my head about something. It's pretty trivial, you'll probably think, but it's still bothering me.
Yesterday I was at a bbq/party hosted by my sister, N, for my BIL's 40th birthday. There were quite a few people there, and the surprise portion was pulled off without a hitch. Instead of gifts, everyone was asked to bring a dish to share, and that worked really well. My sister provided the hotdogs and hamburgers, and my brother, A, volunteered to man the bbq.
Now my bro is 9 years younger than me. There is a world of difference between us. Sometimes I wonder if we're even from the same family. As he was bbq-ing the burgers, he passed me one, and I rejected it, telling him that it wasn't fully cooked. I could see that part of it was still slightly gooey, still a tiny bit pink. I am very conscious of undercooked meat and the bacteria that they may contain. I know that not every single piece of beef contains E-coli., and that not every piece of chicken contains salmonella. But who wants to take that chance?
So as he took back the patty, I also said that I needed a new bun. I wasn't going to take the chance that undercooked meat juices may have transferred to the bun, that's called cross-contamination people! Maybe you think I'm paranoid, but that's fine. As long as you agree that there is the slightest chance that a small vomit-and-diarrhea-inducing-bacteria may have fallen from the burger onto the bun, then I'm not going to play those odds!
A started an argument with me about this, telling me, ME!! that I needed to "do my research"! W.T.F.???!! Where does he get off? Isn't it common knowledge that improperly cooked burgers can make you sick? He had some strange, bizarre idea that "it's not the bacteria in the meat that makes you sick, it's..." and here is where I end quote because I can't remember for sure what he was trying to say, but it was such a strange and foreign idea that I think my brain rejected it. It had something to do with being left out, and making other germs though.
I know, it doesn't make sense.
The argument became more and more heated, with my mom trying to jump in and (thankfully) trying to support my argument. A was trying to argue that if there was bacteria in the meat, you would get sick whether you cooked the meat or not. Not true. Why on earth does he think that? Why does he think that "they" tell you to cook meat to certain temps? To kill any unwanted germs in there, that's why!!
The clincher of this issue, the part that pissed me off most, was when he said, "Whatever, I'm not going to argue with you."
People, if you ever want to piss me off for whatever reason, you're having a bad day and want someone to suffer with you, or I made you upset for something I did another time, or you just plain have it in for me, then the surest and fastest way to piss me off is for you to pick a fight with me (and it doesn't have to be about anything major, it could just be a harmless debate) and then end it with that statement.
Whatever, I'm not going to argue with you.
My DH does that. Often. And it NEVER fails to enrage me all the more. Why bother arguing in the first place if you're "not going to argue" with me? Just tell me I'm right, and have done with it.
So back to the purpose of this post. I am trying to figure out why this argument upset me so much. I dwelt on it for the rest of the afternoon/night, and even this morning I woke up thinking about it. I really shouldn't care. A and I see each other, at best 4 or 5 times a year. We don't communicate much at all otherwise. We don't phone each other, or even email. Even if I post on his FB page he rarely responds. We are both at very different stages in life, and will probably remain that way until we both have married children. He isn't even married yet himself, although he does finally have a steady girlfriend.
He and I are so different. We have different views on life entirely. He is the youngest child of our family, and was spoiled rotten. He was also the only boy. I am the oldest of the three girls. I'm not sure if these things matter, but they seem to in our family.
Outside of our family, if I ever met him on the street, or through a friend, I would NEVER be friends with him. Other than his sharp wit and wicked sense of humour, I would find nothing redeeming about him. He has unrealistic ideas of the world, and strange ideas at that. He is immature beyond what is acceptable to me, and stubborn and pig-headed. He has that sense of entitlement to him that irks me, and that my friend Lisa blogged about here.
So why was this argument bothering me so much?
Here are my theories:
- I was concerned about his devil-may-care attitude that may lead to the sickness of all the party-goers, children included (yeah, that's probably not it.)
- I rarely see him and so the fact that we were arguing during one of these rare times upset me all the more (hmmm, maybe.)
- I was right, and he was wrong, and I want the world to know it! (this one's very likely)
- He said the magic words to piss me off for all eternity (and I'm not going to repeat them again).
- His whole pig-headed attitude and immediate assumption that I needed to get my facts straight made me second-guess myself, when I shouldn't be, so that pissed me off (another likely one.)
- I wanted to smack him silly, and didn't get a chance to. (BINGO!)