Saturday, August 07, 2010

The Great Update Post

I'm sorry. I'm really, really sorry. So much has happened in the last month, I've hardly had a chance to catch my breath, let alone find a half hour to sit down and tell you guys about it.

So I'll try to catch everything up in bullet points:

1. This is our very last night in our townhouse in Airdrie. Tomorrow we will be residents of Irricana. We had to make a whole bunch of repairs to the house, which are now finished. Several rooms in the house now have a fresh coat of paint, including the baby's room. Which brings me to #2…

2. We had to open the envelope so we knew what color to paint the baby's room. And it's…A BOY! We have no idea what we are going to name this poor kid, because, well, we both were pretty sure it was a girl. Sorry kid, if you're reading this several years from now. It's not that we didn't want you to be a boy, it's just that since girls tend to run in my family, and we already had a girl, we just sort of assumed that you were going to be a girl too. Anyway, until we decide on an ACTUAL name for this kid, we've been calling him "Hamish" because Nathan suggested it as a joke, and I immediately said VETO!, and now it's sort of become a family joke. We'll come up with something a little more appropriate, I promise.

3. We have decided to get cell phones with internet capability, rather than have a land line and internet connection - so until I figure out how you post to Blogger using an iPhone, you might not hear from me for awhile.

Well, off to spend my last night here. I'm a little bit teary-eyed, to be honest. This was our very first house. This is where we brought home our first baby. This is where we found out about baby #2. There are a lot of memories tied up in this house. But of course, I know that we'll make a ton more in the new house. Just can't quite get rid of the little lump in my throat.

Thursday, July 08, 2010

Moving to Irricana!

Holy Crap you guys. We got the house.

I kind of can't believe it, to be perfectly honest with you. I mean, this house is totally awesome. Not in a "brand-new loaded with upgrades" kind of way. But in a "10-years-old but has everything I ever wanted in a house" kind of way. Because honestly, I really didn't like any of the brand new showhomes we went to see. They don't have any personality, and they all look exactly alike.

But this house. Oh, this house. Great big kitchen with a walk-thru pantry. Ensuite with a jetted tub. Little room with garden doors off the master bedroom that will be PERFECT for a little nursery for the new babe. Double garage for Nate's tools, and nice long driveway for the vehicles. Laundry room off the kitchen. Finished basement with a spare room for guests. Solarium windows all along one wall in the living room. Separate room with a HOT TUB IN IT! A little room off the living room for all the toys to go. And a back yard, complete with a garden, a clothesline, flowerbeds, strawberry patch, raspberry bushes, and a thriving rhubarb plant. A gate that opens up to the walking path that I hope to some day be jogging on.

I am already planning to make some trips to some fabric stores so that I can whip up some curtains and pillows, and I want to shamelessly copy my Aunt Louise and make a couple of great big floor pillows for my living room for kids to snuggle in. I'm in full-on nesting mode, to be honest. I'm living on Sarah Richardson's website, and I'm trying to do exactly what she does: start with fabric, then pick out paint chips, then find furniture that fits.

So, bear with me. I'm internet researching. And shopping. And daydreaming. And shopping some more. When I have paint chips and fabric swatches, I'll share.

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

The townhouse is sold!!!!

Holy Crap! Has life ever gotten crazy!

First, we sold the townhouse. Yaaaayyy!! Woo Hoo! It was for A LOT less than we had hoped, but it's sold and that's all that matters. September 4 is not that far away, and while you CAN put a baby in a dresser drawer for a little while, it tends to be frowned upon these days. So we dropped our price and spent three days negotiating on a low-ball offer and eventually found a price we could both agree on.

Mostly because we wanted to see if we could take a shot at putting in an offer on the house that we fell in love with, before it was sold to somebody else. So we did. We put in an offer. And it was kind of low. But we were hoping that they would negotiate and meet us somewhere in the middle. You know, like we did. But they refused to go lower than their asking price so we figured that was the end of that.

That same day, the property inspector came to look at our townhouse for the woman who is buying it. And found a plumbing leak. A plumbing leak that requires cutting a hole in the living room wall. Arrggg! was about the only thing I could think to say. Well, I could think of other things, but there's a three-year-old with big ears running around here.

And then…back to the house we love…our realtor called us back and said that the relocation company the people are working with wanted to know what our top line price was. So we told them. And then they wanted us to put in another offer, in writing, with them as the vendor and not the current owners of the house. Which has us completely confused. But we did it anyway, because we REALLY WANT TO BUY THIS HOUSE. That offer deadline is Wednesday at 9 p.m. I'm not sure if I will have any fingernails left by then.

In the meantime, the plumber has come and fixed the leak, there is a giant hole in my living room wall, and the buyer's realtor will be here at 9 a.m. tomorrow to verify that the leak is all fixed. Then the drywaller will spend the next three days fixing the big hole in my wall. And hopefully sometime tomorrow we will find out if we get the beautiful house in Irricana.

I need some wine. But I can't have wine. I need some cinnamon buns with cream cheese icing. I think that will do nicely…

Tuesday, June 08, 2010

Let's hope it turns out this well…


"Yes Gracie?"

"I'm just so excited." (pronounced esscited)

"What are you excited about?"

"Well………I'm excited for the baby to come out of your tummy. Is it going to be soon?"

"It's still a little ways away yet Gracie. Right now it's June, and we have to go through all the days in June, all the days in July and all the days in August before the baby comes out of my tummy."

"But then it will come out?"

"Yes, then it should come out soon after that."

"And we'll know if it's a sister or a brother?"

"Yes. That's when we'll find out."

"I think it's a sister. And you know what Mommy?"

"What Gracie?"

"It's going to be so much fun because then I'll always have someone to play with me. But don't worry. I'll ask her what she wants to play, and we'll take turns, and I'll share all my toys. I'll be a NICE big sister."

Monday, June 07, 2010

Gotta stop dreaming

Okay you guys. I need a distraction. I have to stop thinking about the house that we love but will never, ever get to live in because HELLO! it's the most awesome house in the world and we will never sell our house before this one is snapped up by someone else. So, I'm going to plant flowers. And make some banana-chocolate chip muffins. And clean out my closet. And read Gracie as many stories as she asks for.

And go the the corner store and check my Lotto Max ticket, just in case…

Friday, June 04, 2010

Long time, no write…

I love my blog. I really do. I love coming here and writing and sharing and just getting my life down in black and white. But you sure can't tell by looking at it, can you?

You see, Gracie has a sixth sense. Every single day, I come upstairs and sit down and start writing a blog post. I honestly do. And then, exactly 15 seconds later, Gracie calls me from somewhere else in the house. "Mooooommmmmyyyyy, I neeeeeeeeed yooooouuuuuuu!" And I yell: "What do you neeeeeeed me foooor?"

The answer is always different. Sometimes she has to go potty, sometimes she's decided she's hungry, sometimes she desperately needs the toy on the very top shelf that she can't reach, and said toy is dangling precariously over her head. Seriously. Fifteen seconds earlier she will be playing happily, totally engrossed in what she's doing. But as soon as I sit down at the computer to try to write something, my presence is always urgently needed.

For example, I started writing this post on Wednesday. It is now Friday. FRIDAY! It's taken me two days to get just this far. I have all these things floating around in my head that I desperately want to write about, but I just can't seem to find a half hour to myself to write about them.

For example, have I mentioned that our house is for sale? And has been for months? No? Whoops. Well, we put our house up for sale, and a gazillion people have come to see it, and not one person has made an offer. Not one! And we're getting a little tiny bit frustrated. I personally would like to start nesting in a baby's room now. You know, put up the crib, start washing the baby clothes, stocking up on diapers and other baby stuff - but there's just nowhere to do that here.

Plus, we've absolutely fallen head over heels in love with a house in Irricana, and would desperately love to make an offer on it, if someone, for the LOVE OF GOD would just make an offer on our house already!

Also, a very wonderful woman named Cheyenne is launching an online store of baby and children's vintage items that are TO DIE FOR, and I've been designing a logo and things for her. The store isn't online yet (because she's waiting for me to get my butt in gear!), but she does have a blog where's she's showcasing some of the items that will be on sale. You should go there. You will love them! Go there right now!

I'm going to go work on her website right now…

Friday, May 07, 2010

The Best Cookies Ever! Or, please stop with the snow…

Okay, so several days ago I promised to give you my cookie recipe, and then promptly forgot. I'm sorry. I've been very busy this week blowing my nose and whining about the damn snow THAT JUST WON'T STOP. Seriously. It's May now, and it's been snowing all week. I've about had enough. My couped up 3-year-old who loves to go outside had enough two months ago. We have not been fun to be around this week.

But today the sun is shining and my head has stopped producing tons of snot, and I'm finished whining. For the time being.

So without any further ado, here is the recipe the world's best cookies:

Chocolate Drop Cookies

2 cups sugar
6 tbsp cocoa
1/2 cup margarine or butter
1/2 cup milk (I use rice milk now, and it works just fine!)
1/2 tsp vanilla
1 cup shredded sweetened coconut
3 cups instant oats

Combine sugar, cocoa, butter and milk in a large saucepan and bring to a boil. Add vanilla. Remove from heat and stir in coconut and oats. Drop by teaspoonful onto wax paper until chilled.

That's the official recipe that I got out of the 4-H cookbook a zillion years ago. Here are some things that I learned over the years that make them turn out better:

1. Make sure that you bring the mixture to a boil over low heat. Very low heat. Like, the very lowest setting on your stovetop. It takes forever for it to melt together and boil, but if you do it too high it scorches the mixture and then your cookies taste burnt.

2. Toast the coconut first. Spread it out on a cookie sheet and put it under the broiler for a minute or two, just long enough to turn it a little bit brown. Trust me.

Monday, April 26, 2010

Excuse me while I sit here and eat cookies

See these cookies? These are the best cookies on the whole, entire world.
And I haven't eaten them in about four years. Crazy, right? Why would I not make my favorite cookies for four years? Well…

They have milk in them. And I can't have milk. Now, in my impetuous youth, I used to make them ALL THE TIME, ignore that I was allergic to the milk they contained, and just live on antihistamines for a week. Not terribly smart, I know. But these cookies are SO DAMN GOOD that it was totally worth it.

But then I got pregnant, and I couldn't have the antihistamines. So I tried making them with soy milk. But instead of turning out like nice, chocolatey lumps, they were liquidy blobs that didn't ever set, just sort of oozed all over my kitchen table.

But last week, my mom requested these cookies for her birthday in lieu of birthday cake, and suggested that I try using rice milk instead. And as you can see, the results were FABULOUS! These last two cookies? They are the last two of the THIRD BATCH I have made (and eaten all by myself) in the last two weeks. I could blame my very round stomach on little Kicky McGee in there, but the slightly fatter thighs and butt? No one to blame but myself and my lack of willpower.

Let me know if I've tempted anyone enough that you'd like the recipe, and I'll post it here tomorrow!

In other news: Kicky McGee moved! And I am almost completely pain-free these days. I stopped taking the Advil a couple of days after my post about the pain, just because I was too worried about taking it, despite several reassurances from several different sources that it would do absolutely no damage to baby at this point in my pregnancy. It was hard. Very, very hard. But I was coping. And then baby finally decided that sitting in the very bottom of my pelvis was not particularly comfortable, and got his/her butt off of my nerves - literally!!!!

Friday, April 09, 2010

The envelope please…

So, it turns out, they really WILL give you an envelope, if you ask nicely. I honestly didn't think they would do such a thing. I was joking when I asked, but the technician didn't laugh hysterically like I thought he would, and the next thing I know he's writing it down and sealing it in an envelope for me.

So now the sex of baby #2 is sitting in an envelope on my nightstand in my bedroom, calling my name. And it is requiring me to summon amounts of willpower I didn't even know I had.

I mean, this isn't just "I'd really like a piece of that cheesecake, but I shouldn't," willpower. Or "my legs hurt and my lungs are burning, but I only have half a kilometre left to go" willpower. Or even "you don't need that epidural, you just have to get through a few more hours, and then it's all over" willpower.


I don't know how you fight that. Maybe I'll go find some cheesecake. Cheesecake solves everything, right?

Wednesday, April 07, 2010

To find out or not to find out. That is the question…

Today is my 18-week ultrasound. You know - the one where you get to find out if that's a boy or a girl in there, sitting on your S5 and R1 nerves and keeping you up at night. Or is that just me?

Anyway…early on in this pregnancy, Nate and I decided that since this will be our last baby, maybe it would be fun to have this one be a surprise. We knew that Gracie was a girl, and started calling her Gracie for months before she actually arrived.

But since we've already been there and done that, and we have only one last chance to experience one of life's best surprises, maybe this time we should do it. And we were pretty resolved…until last night.

We were sitting on the couch discussing keeping it a surprise, and then the conversation morphed into: "maybe they could just put it in an envelope for us, so if we really wanted to know later, we could."

I have to admit, I'm dying to know. But there is something to be said for waiting until he/she is born. I mean, if this birth goes anything like the last one, it might be nice to have a big surprise waiting for the finish line.

Maybe they COULD just give us an envelope…

Tuesday, April 06, 2010

Dear Superstore: You Suck!

Yesterday, I did something not altogether smart. Which is a nice way to say that it was stupid. It was really, very stupid.

I took Gracie on our big grocery shopping day with no Pull-Ups on. Just underwear.

Now first, I should explain that every two weeks I do a big day of grocery shopping, and then try not to step foot in the place for the next 14 days. I find that I stick to my budget much better this way, and also, who wants to go grocery shopping every other day? So I start out at No Frills and buy 75% of the stuff on my list, then I go to the Superstore to get the stuff they don't have at No Frills. You should also know that it takes me hours and hours to shop because: 1) Gracie and I can't have dairy so I have to read every single label of every single thing that goes into my cart and 2) I have to bring a three year old with me.

It started out really well. No Frills is a small little grocery store, the kind that doesn't really have a public bathroom, just the employee bathroom that they will let you use if you are running down the aisles with a child yelling "I HAVE TO GO POTTTTTTYYYYYYYY!" at the top of her lungs. Which I did, no less then four times while shopping there yesterday afternoon. Seriously, you should have seen it. Big, fat, pregnant me, holding a 35-pound 3-year-old and pushing a full cart, running down the aisles as fast as I can while Gracie broadcast to the whole store that she really needed to pee RIGHT NOW! But she made it! And I was so proud of her! It was awesome! My daughter was finally potty trained! Woo Hoo!

And then we went to the Superstore.

Clearly, the person who designed the layout for the Superstore in Airdrie had no children. Or had never had to shop with small children. Or ever been around children. Ever.

The Superstore is, well, super-sized. It's huge. And the one and only bathroom is at the front of the store, and only accessible AFTER you have gone through the tills and paid for your groceries. I had never noticed this. To be honest with you, I've never needed to go to the bathroom there until after I was finished shopping, so how would I know? But there you go. The first time Gracie had to go, I was stopped by an employee who wanted to see the receipt for my groceries in my cart before we could go in. No receipt, no passage through the tills. I mean, I can see their point, but seriously - I had a squirming, wiggling 3-year-old doing the potty dance here. Do you really think I'm trying to skip out without paying?

The nice lady stood there and watched my cart and let Gracie and I go through. The next time Gracie had to go, we were at the very back of the store, as far from the bathrooms as a person could possibly be. Despite my best efforts, the kid couldn't hold it that long. And the very nice lady who had stood with our cart was long gone, and the next guy wasn't as nice. Gracie had to sit in her wet pants until we got done shopping.

So, today's lesson is: Never, ever take Gracie to the Superstore without a Pull-Up. And Mommy is stupid.
The End.

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

"I was so tired that I…"

I had a nap in my car yesterday.

Seriously. I actually had a nap in my Jeep Liberty. Parked right in front of my house. Where the neighbours could look out their windows and see me.

I hadn't really slept much the night before (see my last post regarding PAIN), and it had been a busy day in Calgary, and on the way home Gracie fell asleep in her car seat. And I was SO TIRED. Like, so tired that I had to turn on the air conditioning and turn up the radio to keep from falling asleep before I got home. And when we finally arrived home, it was windy and cold and raining just a tiny bit. Which meant that if I took Gracie out of her car seat and transferred her into the house, there was NO WAY she was going to still be asleep by the time I made it to the front door. And I really, really, REALLY needed a little nap.

So I parked the Jeep, turned it off, and closed my eyes. And I actually slept there for a good 20 minutes.

Anybody else got any good, "I was so tired that I…" stories?

Friday, March 26, 2010

Pain, pain, go away…

Wow. It's been a reeaallly long time since I've written here. And sooooo much has happened. Well, I guess not so much. Just one big thing. Pain. Lots and lots of pain.

Those of you who are on Facebook will be familiar with my whining by now. A few days ago a wrote a super-long blog post detailing everything that's happened to me over the last almost three weeks. And then, I decided that nobody wanted to spend THAT MUCH TIME listening to me whine. So I'm not posting that one, even though it took me an hour to write.

Instead, I will give it to you in a nutshell:

After going to the emergency room in the middle of the night, going for an ultrasound to make sure that I didn't have a blood clot in my leg, going to the chiropractor several times, and finally being able to see a doctor at my medical clinic, here's what they've all together decided:

Baby is sitting directly on top of two major nerve endings in the bottom of my pelvis, giving me severe sciatica, and nobody has any idea how to make it any better. In fact, they're pretty sure it's only going to get worse. Sorry about your luck! Maybe try some physiotherapy?

It doesn't hurt so bad if I just keep walking. No sitting, no lying down, just walking around, all day, never stopping. But eventually, a person gets tired. Especially a 36-year-old pregnant person who also spends her days entertaining a 3-year-old, and teaching a class of kids aged 2-5 two mornings a week.

So eventually, I have to lay down. Except that then, the crippling pain just starts shooting through my leg, and after about 10 minutes of it, I can't stand it any more and I have to stand up again. I spent three whole nights doing that: dozing 10 minutes at a time, and then getting up and walking around. And after three days I was so exhausted that I could barely function.

So I did something desperate: I remembered that the ER doctor said that it was perfectly safe to take Advil in the second trimester, and that that would likely be the only thing that would bring me any relief. So, I gave in. I put Gracie in the Jeep and cried most of the way to the Shoppers Drug Mart a few blocks away (because driving was almost unbearably painful), and I bought me a bottle of Advil.

And I'm ashamed to admit that I've been pretty much relying on the Advil ever since. Of course, I can't keep this up. It's very dangerous in the third trimester, and that isn't all that far away. So obviously I'll need to find better ways to cope with the pain, and soon. But until then, I'm ashamed to admit that I've been rather enjoying getting a little bit of sleep, and a little bit of pain relief. With the Advil, the pain is totally tolerable, and the only thing that bothers me is that my right leg is numb from the knee down - and it feels like I'm standing barefoot in a snow drift.

Without it, well, I don't want to think about it. I can make it to September 4, right?

Tuesday, March 09, 2010

This may be the cutest thing I've ever seen her do

So, I went upstairs to run her bath water, and when I came back downstairs, I found her like this:

I think it's bedtime now, not an hour from now. What do you think?

Friday, February 26, 2010

Countdown to September 4…

So, I don't think I can keep this a secret any longer. Partly because it's now the worst-kept secret on the planet, and partly because I only have one pair of pants left that I can do up. And they are sweat pants. I'm trying not to think about it.

So, without any further ado…I'M PREGNANT AGAIN! And rather excited about it. Except for the actual birth part. Not too excited about that. I delivered an 8 pound, 10.75 ounce baby with nothing but laughing gas just over three years ago, and I STILL REMEMBER HOW MUCH IT HURT. But I'm trying not to think about that, because boy, did I get something wonderful out of it.

And I just can't wait to cuddle something this small again.

Monday, February 22, 2010

Shiny, happy people

Please excuse my absence. I've had a bit of a bad few weeks. Sick kid, broken pipes that wrecked the roof in my living room, grumpy kid in desperate need of the GOOD allergy medicine from the naturopath that was on vacation, and grumpy mommy who spent much of last week feeling like throwing up.

And you know, I just don't feel like writing when I'm in a crappy mood. Because I know that I will sit down and complain to you nice people, and, well, I'm pretty sure you don't come here to hear me complain.

So…I'm feeling much better now. Gracie's feeling much better now. Everybody is much happier. And I'm ready to write shiny, happy things that make us all feel better.

Like Gracie's third birthday! Which, I have for some reason forgotten to write about. It was such a great day. The best birthday she's had so far. Mostly because now that we've got her on the good allergy medicine from the naturopath, she no longer cries the entire time people are at our house. And she actually enjoys playing with other kids, which is something pretty new around here. It was sad that all of her other cousins were sick and couldn't come, but Gracie and Olivia had the best time together!

Happy 3rd birthday my Gracie girl. May you always want a brown horse cake with Skittles on it, and may you always love wearing your Tigger suit.

Tuesday, February 02, 2010

Right after we read "Love You Forever…"

"Do you love ME forever Mommy?"

"Yes, sweetheart, I will love you forever, I'll like you for always, as long as I'm living, my baby you'll be."

"Why will I be your baby forever? I'm not a baby!"

"No, you aren't a baby anymore, are you? You grew and you grew and you grew, just like the boy in the story."

"But I was a baby? And I was in your tummy?"

"Yes, you were!

"Why was I in your tummy?"

"Because when a Mommy and a Daddy want to have a baby, that's where the baby grows until it's big enough to come out."

"Can you have another baby in your tummy?"

"Yes, I think so. Do you want a baby to come out of my tummy?"

"Yes please. I want a sister."

"Well, maybe you'll get a sister, but maybe you'll get a brother. We don't get to pick. When the baby comes out, it's a big surprise whether it's a boy or a girl."

"It's a big surprise? Like at Christmas when Daddy's present was a surprise and we couldn't tell him what it was?"

"Yes, just like that!"

"But…I want to pick. I want a sister."

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Why, why, why, why, why…

She's such a good kid. She's such a good kid that I hate to ever, ever complain about something she's doing because, well, she's such a good kid!

But good God, for the love of all that is holy, could somebody please tell me how you make the never ending WHY questions stop? She started with the questions a few weeks ago, and in those few shorts weeks I have gone from "Super Earnest Mommy Who Tries To Make All Every Day Situations Into A Learning Experience," to "Crazy Lady Who Will Buy You Some Skittles If You Just Stop Asking Me Why A Horsie Is Called A Horsie!"

Seriously, here is an actual conversation we had today:

"What are you doing Mommy?"
"I'm doing laundry."
"Why are you doing laundry?"
"Because the clothes are dirty, and we need to make them clean."
"Why do we need to make them clean?"
"Because we can't wear clothes that are dirty and smelly, silly!"
"Why can't we wear clothes that are dirty and smelly silly?"
"Because that's yucky! And we like to be clean. Don't you like to be clean?"
"We like to be clean? Why do we like to be clean?"
"Because it doesn't feel very nice to be dirty…"
"Why doesn't feel very nice to be dirty?"
"Are you hungry? Would you like some oranges for a snack?"
"Why are you making oranges for a snack?"

It's like this all day long. She follows me everywhere I go and asks me endless streams of questions in an infinite loop. I mean, I'm certainly glad she's a smart and inquisitive kid, and intellectually I know that this is just a phase that she's going through. But seriously! How long does this phase last? Because I think I can make it through a couple more months, but much longer than that and I think my head is going to explode.

Friday, January 22, 2010

Look! She doesn't even do the cheater push-ups!

The other day, my friend Julie posted on Facebook that she needed people to give her some motivation to exercise, and I joked that I should send Gracie over to her house.

Because that child of mine is sure to grow up to be someone's personal trainer. She loves to exercise. In fact, the first thing she wants to do when she gets up in the morning is exercise.

"Come on Mommy! It's time to do our exercises!"
"How about we have some breakfast first, so Mommy has some energy to exercise."
"Oh - Kay," she says, head bowed and heading to the breakfast table in total disappointment.

Once breakfast is over, she will tolerate me cleaning up and doing a load of laundry, but then it's get your butt to the Wii Fit time. Seriously. It's pretty good for me, I think. And probably my butt.

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Pick something else

When I was in my early teens, and had reached the age when everyone started asking me what I was going to be when I was done high school, the first answer I ever gave was: A Teacher.

I LOVE kids, and it seemed like the dream job to me. I figured I could spend most of the year teaching and spend my summers writing the children's books I had floating around in my head. And then, when I was older and had kids of my own, I would always be home for them when they were on school vacations. To me, it seemed like a no brainer. Teacher. Done.

But when I started telling people that's what I wanted to do, there was not one person who told me it sounded like a good idea. Not one word of encouragement, not one person who thought I should.

"You'll spend your life dealing with unreasonable parents!"
"You don't want to be around other people's little monsters all day, every day, do you?"
"You'll spend your evenings marking papers instead of having time to yourself."

Even my grandmother, who was A TEACHER, tried to talk me out of it, giving me a little speech I will never forget:

"Good God girl! When I was your age, there were only two jobs a woman could have. Teacher or nurse. You live in a time when you can do anything you want. Anything! PICK SOMETHING ELSE!" The last sentence was spoken so loudly and forcefully that she actually spit on me. I never said I wanted to be a teacher ever again.

Fast forward 20 years, and I'm now a volunteer teacher for Gracie's little playgroup. Every Tuesday, I get to dance around to The Wheels on the Bus, read stories to a sea of cute little faces looking up at me while they eat a snack, and then help them all make a little craft. And you know what? I love every single minute of it.

I can't even put into words how much I love being the Tuesday morning teacher. I love being around small children. They make me happy right to my core. Whenever I see a little one, I break out into an involuntary smile. I don't even mean to, it just happens. I give them the widest smile I've got, and I almost always get a smile back, and maybe even a little wave.

Whenever I'm around little kids, the worries of the world melt away. I feel lighter, happier, and I can't stop smiling. I like listening to the long winded stories of "and then…and then…and then…" I like it when they bring me their treasures to show me. I like asking them a question in the middle of a story, and hearing a chorus of: "it's a kangaroo!!!!"

I'm having so much fun that sometimes I wonder if maybe I should have stuck to my guns when I was younger, and done what I wanted to do. Of course, I don't regret my time working in newspaper. If I hadn't gone into journalism, I would never have met Nathan, and we wouldn't have gotten married or had Gracie. And it goes without saying that I loved all the years I spent working with him too.

But I sure do love being the Tuesday morning teacher.

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Ta Da!

So, what do you think?

First of all, this isn't the best picture. With the lighting in my kitchen, I'm having trouble taking a picture that doesn't make the wall look slightly green. It's really a kind of sand-ish color, with gold undertones. And honestly, I must admit that I liked my red kitchen better. But we want the house to sell quickly, so we thought a more neutral color would probably be the way to go.

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Up to my eyeballs in primer

Sorry everyone. That whole new year's resolution thingy didn't work out so well, huh? Except for one. I got a new client to do some work for, so that's kinda taken up my time.

Also, we have decided to paint the kitchen, the entryway, the half bath, and maybe even the living room. Which I'm supposed to be doing right now. We are doing this so that we might have an easier time selling our house when we list it at the end of the month. Because apparently, other people don't like bright red kitchens and forest green entryways. Who knew?

Anyhoo, better get back to painting. Tomorrow -- pics of the finished product!

Tuesday, January 05, 2010

The only resolution blog you'll read that DOESN'T include weight loss

I'm not really a New Year's Resolution kinda gal. There's just something about the freezing temperatures and hardly any daylight that makes January kind of bleak, and not at all conducive to having the energy to start something new. Honestly, before I had Gracie, I spent most of the winter curled up on the couch with a good book and a bowl of popcorn.

But a month ago, my Mom introduced me to the wonders of Extra Vitamin D, and I tell you, I've got more energy than I've had in YEARS! (Seriously, fellow Canadians. You have to try it. 3000 units of Vitamin D and you'll feel like a new person!) And with this newfound energy, I'm thinking what the hell, why not try a few of these resolution thingies.

So, I give you Denice's New Year's Resolutions, 2010 Edition:

1. Blog More Often. In the last two months, seven different people on seven different occasions have told me how much they loved to read my blog, you know, back when I actually used to post a couple of times a week instead of a couple of times a month. And, when I actually find the time to do it, I really LOVE this blog. So, I'm going to make more time (read: spend less time reading other people's blogs) and do some more writing here.

2. Find a Way to Make Some Money. I love being a stay at home mom. It wouldn't be an exaggeration to say that right here, right now is the happiest I've ever been in my adult life. But… I still feel guilty every day that I'm not doing anything to contribute some income to the family bank account. We're certainly not starving to death, but we're on a pretty tight budget, and that is entirely my fault. So, I'm going to start looking for things I can do from home to generate a little extra income. (Anybody wanna buy an ad on my blog? Seriously - anybody? BlogHer? Federated Media? I've got, like, 30 people per week!)

3. Read More Books. A do read a lot, it's just that what I've been reading lately is Bloggers. And I love my bloggers. I'm not sure what I would do without my daily dose of Dooce, and Amalah, and The Pioneer Woman and the Farm Chicks. But I'm kind of craving something that takes a little longer than 5 minutes to read, and so, I think I'm going to start breaking into that large pile of books that I have bought over the last five years or so, and actually read them.

And I was also thinking: wouldn't it be fun if I had a little Denice-isms Book Club? Who wants to read with me? I'll pick a new book each month, so you've got a whole month to read it, and I'll post what I thought of the book at the end of the month, and you can all leave your comments and let me know what you thought. What do you think? Who's with me?

The first book I thought I would read is: The Secret Life of Bees, by Sue Monk Kidd. Now, I'll admit, the one and only reason that I want to read this one is that I have a bit of a thing for bees. (I'll tell you more about my bee-aficiando ways when I write about the book at the end of the month). But I'm guessing that it's actually about people, and not bees. But there's bees in the title! So I'm holding out hope.