Thursday, December 27, 2007

Just for fun

I thought I'd just post this little video. I took it last night - it is a bit dark - but I think you can see, mostly.


We are all recovering. The tree came down today - Gavin has been begging me to take the ornaments off. He loves playing with the long beady garland things. So the Christmas spirit has officially left our house.


video

Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Christmas fun





We made it through another Christmas. It was actually a lot of fun this year. Gavin really enjoyed all the presents. I struggle with a bit of a socialist conscience at this time of year. No matter how simple we try to keep things it still seems a bit overwhelming. But we are extremely grateful to friends and family who love and value our kids.

The biggest Christmas miracle this year is that we actually payed for a tree this year. It was half price and if we had waited one more day it likely would have been free (this choked Wes). But, Saturday was the only availlable day we had to get the tree dressed so we took the plunge.

We had a wonderful day. Uncle Brad and his girlfriend, Cindy, came over for waffles and a gift exchange. Then we all trucked out to Mom and Dad's and had a wonderful day with family and friends. We stayed over night so I could get the kids to bed at a still decent hour. It worked for Bronwyn, but Gavin was up to the bitter end. I was laying him down at 11:30ish. Wow - where do they get the energy.

Uncle Tom and family win the award for noisiest gift of the year award - an electric drum set for Gavin. I think that is a bit of payback for all the inappropriate gifts I have given over the years.

I won the award for most breakable gift. The little Ikea tea set I got for Bronwyn has already suffered a casualty. Oh, well at least I didn't pay a lot for it! Wes wins the award for most gracious gift. He got me a Celine Dion CD even though he doesn't like her at all and gave it to me on the condition that he NEVER has to hear it! OK - I can do that. We still have most of the ornaments still on the tree but I have promised Gavin he can strip it bare tomorrow - he can't wait!

We keep Christmas pretty simple around here. A few gifts, lots of food, a lot of fun with family, and a heck of a lot of thanksgiving for the gifts God has given us. We still are quite overwhelmed with how well Bronwyn continues to do. Our lives are rich and full and God has been very very good to us.

We hope and pray you all had a great Christmas. May God bless and keep you in the Year ahead.

Saturday, December 22, 2007

Christmas Card


I did this last year and it was a great deal of fun - well for me at least. Here is our family picture and Christmas wish for the year. If you have been checking in on our progress and would like to say a quick hi and Christmas greeting, please comment. We'd love to hear from you.
It's a sort of virtual Christmas card.

God Bless you all in the new Year.

Friday, December 21, 2007

Happy Birthday Wes

Yup it is Wes' birthday. So congrats to the best hubby and best daddy EVER (of course excluding the spouse or father of whomever is reading this - naturally they are also the best ever).

Thursday, December 20, 2007

Word to the wise - post for Bonnie



OK - so I confessed I had issues with Santa. So the other day in an attempt to explain Santa to Gavin, in away that still allows him the enjoyment but doesn't violate my personal sensibilities, I explained that Santa was like Diego. Diego is a cartoon, not real, and he is still really fun to watch and enjoy. OK - so just in case you are ever tempted to do this - DON'T!!! Apparently saying that Diego isn't real is WAY worse than saying Santa isn't real. Yowsers!! So if any of you ask me - Diego is real and he rescues animals all day long! Oh, and Jaguars make great house pets - its the truth.

Next is the tooth fairy - as you can see in the picture of Gavin (that is floss all over the floor) we are going to need the tooth fairy's help so we can afford to buy more floss.

Saturday, December 15, 2007

Ice cream dream



So Wes took Gavin out this afternoon to pick up an ice cream cake. (Mom and Dad were coming over this evening as it is Mom's birthday today). Wes told me when he got home from their trip that he had a hard time getting Gavin into the car at the Dairy Queen. Apparently Gavin announced that this was his home, that they were his friends and they liked him.

Well, really maybe the Dairy Queen really is his true home - deep down in the ice creamy part of his soul.

It is hard to argue with logic like that!

Thursday, December 13, 2007

Tis the Season

I must admit that I often feel the responsibility to write something a little bit more weighty than just our ramblings and small family events. I don't know why - I guess I have a sense of needing to contribute to the greater good somewhere - you know out there (ya I never found it either). But I often find myself at a loss. This is primarily because I am not much of a thinker these days. Some might say I never was - but they would just be rude!

So I sat down to write something that could uplift and encourage. But something happened (aside from the lack of activity upstairs). I read a bunch of blogs and discovered all sorts of pictures of Santa with little sweeties sitting on his lap. Wow that guy gets around. So as a result this blog is going to be more of a confession.

I don't know what to do with Santa.

I just can't get my head wrapped around it. We were brought up to not believe in Santa. We still got gifts from Santa and watched all the shows etc. but we were told it was Mom and Dad. I still remember sleeping on the living room floor in front of the stockings determined to be awake when they got filled up. I never did get a glimpse - sleep always came first.

Wes is fairly pro Santa but I just don't even know what to do with it. If I could I'd just go along with it - but somehow I just don't like lying to my kid. I know that this isn't considered lying by most people because it is a societal ritual, but I didn't grow up believing in it so to me its lying.

My problem becomes more substantial because my kids don't live in a bubble. All of the kids they know believe in Santa. I assure you I am the only person I know who has these hangups. So how do I teach my kid what I believe without violating the customs and traditions of others?

I want to be very clear that I have absolutely no problem with the decision of 99.9% of our friends and family and society who do choose to foster a belief in Santa. I truly believe it is important to honour your traditions and to pass on to your kids the things that had value to you as a child. For me it is just a very personal dilemma.

I do however, have absolutely no hang ups in wishing you all the happiest of Christmas seasons.

Monday, December 10, 2007

Snow much fun




OK so lame title. But we were at Mom and Dad's after church yesterday as usual. Claudia and Shibu and family were also there (along with Jon and Cindy and the usual suspects). The kids all went out to slide on the little hill in Mom and Dad's front yard. They had lots of fun. Connor from across the street came over and joined in too. Gavin was so thrilled to see him.

The kids are doing great - we have all been pretty healthy for a week or so - yeah!! We had a seriously lazy day as we were running around all weekend.

Gavin had a melt down today because he wanted to go visit Max but I said we could check tomorrow. I just wanted the kids to have a really slow low energy day today. Tomorrow is just a very long wait!! It is so great having a playmate for Gavin right across the street. He just loves it.

I have included a little picture of Bronwyn's Sunday school class. I usually don't stay because they are in the capable hands of Fiona and Ellen. But I found Mel doing the class and elected to stay and help for a bit. They sure are sweet. I understand Fiona has been spending a great deal of time with her Mom. We have been thinking a lot of Ellen and our hearts and prayers are with the Davies family.

Tuesday, December 04, 2007

Winter is here



The Christmas festivities have started, the snow is here, the cold is here too (yuck). Gavin keeps saying he wants to go to Chrismes (Christmas). I am a bit of a humbug and would probably rather go right past Christmas. But we all do things we don't like for our kids right!

We had a very busy weekend. On Saturday we went to Joan's in Airdrie for their Festival of Lights celebration. There was fireworks and a train ride for Gavin. Val, Rick and Megan joined us. It was great fun. Joan even had a gingerbread house for the kids to build. Very sweet - ha ha.

When we got home the house was really cold. Wes realized that he had accidentally turned the heat way down. So he turned it up and we went to bed. In the morning the house was actually colder. For those of you who are not in Calgary right now it was around -23c Sunday morning. He realized that the pipes that go under the addition he just added were frozen. Yeah! So we went off to church and to Mom's after for dinner. Wes went home and worked on the heat. He got it up and running but at 8 pm the temp in the house was still only 15c. So we stayed at Mom and Dad's for the night. It made for a long commute for Wes but it also allowed the house to heat up again and we are home thankful for warm houses!

You know we forget how lucky we are. My Grandmother's people settled in Southwest Saskatchewan and it would have been very very cold in their homes. You'd have to keep a fire going all the time just to make the house livable. That means collecting and chopping lots and lots and lots of wood by hand. Can you imagine?

It is funny - when we were at the graveside where Grandma was buried - I was completely awestruck by the landscape. Grandma was buried beside her people. It was neat to see the tombstones of our ancestors, but the land was truly the most barren I have ever seen. It was early August and HOT. It was dry as a bone. As you stepped little puffs of dust rose from the ground. There were hills as far as the eye could see - few or no trees - and just rugged shrubby bushes and grasses. Wow! This was where her family had come to farm? I was shaken.

It was so surprising to me because of the way Grandma spoke of her family's home. She talked of her childhood home as the most amazing place. She knew they were poor but didn't care.

I guess we all feel that way about our growing up years. They really are a magical time. I truly hope my kids feel that way - although they won't be able to talk about the prairie winds and the prairie storms. For now they are city bound - but hopefully they will love their memories too.

Friday, November 30, 2007

Time sure flies

Wow - I just looked at the date - November 30th. Did that catch anyone else of guard?

I have been sick this week. I was really sick in the early part of the week. Wes stayed home Tuesday to help with the kids - guess who I'm nominating for husband of the year? I am doing somewhat better now. My poor kids have had to put up with a Mom that doesn't have a lot of energy though.

I had an interesting conversation with my son in the middle of the night. He came to our bed about 2 am. I asked him why he needed to come to our bed. He said there were ghosts in his room. I asked where he had learned about ghosts. He told me something but I have no clue what it was - I suspect it was from TV.

He then asked for water. I asked where his water was, he told me in his room. I got up to get it, but first I turned to him and said - I don't know if I want to go in there - you said there were ghosts. He replied - no. I said - Well, I don't want to see ghosts so I'm not sure I want to go in there. He replied - No ghosts in there.

Isn't that just convenient.

I have attached this little video. I was able to catch the tail end of the concert they put on with their trumpets or as Gavin calls them - the music making thing. It isn't as cute as the start of the parade - but at least I caught some of it.


video

Monday, November 26, 2007

Busy busy busy




We had a busy weekend. As a result we had a stay at home and do nothing day to day - Mommy enforced it!

Saturday we went to Heritage park with the family. It was good fun if a little cold. It was the first day of their twelve days of Christmas celebrations that they do every year. Gavin enjoyed it very much - Bronwyn slept. I took pictures but I some how lost them on my computer - don't ask! Thankfully Cindy also took some and sent me a few - but none of the sleeping beauty.

Sunday was busy as usual. So we were pretty worn out today.

I just have to tell this one little bit - Gavin was point out a hippopotamus to me earlier today and I just had to giggle at the way he says hippo. He called it a "hippothomas." Ha!!

Bronwyn is a real little copy cat right now. Both of our kids sing out loudly at church. It causes a great deal of laughter in the general area.

Saturday, November 24, 2007

We are still here






I know it has been ages since I have posted. I honestly can't tell you where the time has gone. But I am here now!

Our life hasn't been overly complicated lately. Our focus has been serious potty training, so we don't go too far from home. The good news is that Gavin is doing great, except for the poop thing. But, I am sure with time that will come.

On Wednesday night we had a bunch of Wes' family for supper. Wes' cousin Darren and his wife Karen and their new baby Dylan were in town visiting Wes' other cousin Lyle and his girlfriend Jae Lynne (how did I do on the spelling). They all came along with Wes' brother Brad and his new girlfriend Cindy.

Dylan is such a beautiful little baby and very engaging. We really enjoyed getting to meet him.

We see so much of my family (I'm not complaining) that it was super great to see some of Wes' family too.

The kids have been keeping me on my toes. I often think of fun little stories I'd like to share but you know by the time I get around to sitting down I have forgotten.

I promise I will do a better job at keeping up with the news - this week just got away on me.

Monday, November 12, 2007

Our update

We are still just plugging along. The kids seem to finally be over their colds and other health issues. So we are all feeling a bit of relief. We aren't getting out as much as we would like even though the temperatures haven't dropped too low yet. It was just so windy today!

I thought I would share a couple of cute things since I have nothing to say really.

Wes and I often call Bronwyn "dirty shirt," because she is always in the thick of it. If her brother is doing something she muscles her little way into the middle of it. The other day Gavin was sitting with me and Bronwyn was coming down the hallway ahead of her dad. He said excitedly, - here comes dirty shirt.

Gavin answers for Bronwyn frequently now. For example, the other day I was in the kitchen getting breakfast organized. Both kids were hanging around. I asked Bronwyn if she wanted yogurt. Gavin said - yes, her say that.

Our neighbours had a baby boy last Friday. We are so excited for them. I think there is a new couple moving into the rental next to us near the end of the month. Apparently they are trying to have a family too. This could be quite the hopping block soon.

Wednesday, November 07, 2007

Haven't felt much like blogging



Sorry I haven't been blogging much lately. Frankly I just haven't felt in the mood.

The kids are still cute as buttons and still by times driving us crazy. We haven't done much on the exciting side. It seems the kids have sick for a month! We are also on baby watch. Our neighbours (Max's parents) are expecting another baby and are now overdue.

Other than that life is just plugging along.

Thursday, November 01, 2007

Candy




Last night we struggled our little pirate into his costume and started convincing him he was to go out and trick or treat. I explained as I was setting our candy out - that other houses had candy too and he was to go to their doors and say "trick or treat" and they will give him candy in his bag. He looked at me and said - but we have candy here.

Finally, after a fair bit of wrangling and fussing we got the kids out the door. We did about 8 houses on our corner of the street. We came back to the house and I thought we'd come in but Gavin wanted to go to "another neighbours house." I think after about the 3 house the lights went on and he discovered that he was getting candy from these neighbors.

We dropped Bronwyn off and continued on to do more damage. It was really fun - he was pretty darn cute - even if I am his mommy. The little spider in the picture is Max, Gavin's buddy from across the street. And just so you know that Bronwyn didn't go out bare legged - this was just for the photos.

Last night Bronwyn for some reason was not willing to go to bed. She was full of party. We ended up taking her to bed with us as she played and bounced around between us. At one point she stood up in between us and I said firmly - Bronwyn it is time to go to sleep. She lifted her finger to her mouth and said - shhhh. (Grandma taught her that).

Both of my kids have head colds. I feel like they have been sick for weeks. I am frankly really tired of it. But they are both still in pretty good spirits even though they are drippy, runny kids.

Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Saturday, October 27, 2007

The big birthday bash




Today was the big birthday bash. The birthday isn't until Wednesday but we celebrated today. I think the birthday boy had quite a nice time. He seemed to enjoy himself. He is almost three! Wow.

The real hero of the day is Daddy. I got a very bad headache last night that just kept escalating. Wes helped me with the cake last night along with working on Gavin's Halloween costume.

This morning I was still in pretty rotten shape. Wes got the kids up, started cleaning and organizing and let me recover. I managed to pull it together in time to help clean and get all the food ready. But, the party wouldn't have happened if Wes had not stepped in and taken charge. What a great husband I have.

We also had our first snow of the winter earlier this week. Gavin, who is feeling better, was thrilled. Bronwyn isn't so sure she's a winter girl yet.

We are looking forward to a healthier and more productive week!

Monday, October 22, 2007

Older pictures





I took some pictures on Thanksgiving weekend with my brothers camera and they just sent a few on earlier today. They turned out alright even though I had it on the wrong setting.

Gavin is still sick. Crossing my fingers that today he shows improvement.

Saturday, October 20, 2007

Another saturday

Shheesh - what a week. Gavin has been sick all week. My doctor's office was close the last part of the week so I was waiting to see if he would just get better. I finally dragged him to a walk in clinic today. They aren't exactly sure what he has - the doctor suspected strep throat (AGAIN!) and started treating for that. We'll know for sure early next week. I didn't take him to a clinic earlier as I am just not comfortable taking Bronwyn to a walk in clinic. We waited so Wes could watch her while I took him.

The rest of us are fairing pretty well. Just tired and frustrated. You can add cranky to the list but only for Mommy. Daddy and Bronwyn aren't cranky. Gavin is only as cranky as a little very sick boy should be.

If you read this tonight you can pray we all get a good night sleep. We need one! I took a nap with Gavin this afternoon and slept for over 2 hours. The scary thing is that I am still exhausted.

Bronwyn is just full of pickle juice these days. She is walking lots and so proud of herself. She stands up and pushes her chest out and looks at you with an imposing expression. It is like she is saying - Wow am I big or what? She is sitting on the little couch reading a book and chattering a bit. Gavin has been so low key and lethargic that I think she has decided it is her turn to shine.

She is coming my way now. It is so funny she walks like John Wayne.

Saturday, October 13, 2007

Anniversary and 47



Today is our anniversary - roughly 6 year ago (I think) - Wes and I tied the knot. We are planning on going to a movie tonight while Mom and Dad watch the kids - how crazy is that!!!

We normally don't exchange gifts for our anniversary. But this morning Wes gave me the best gift ever. He let me sleep in until 10:30am. That was so great. I have been so tired lately (and no, for those of you who are wondering, I am not pregnant). The kids haven't been sleeping well and I have just been getting more and more worn down. So the extra sleep this morning was amazing.

Other new things in our house are happening too. Bronwyn is walking more and more. Gavin is knocking her over more and more. Bronwyn shakes her head no when you ask her ANYTHING. Are you a good girl - she shakes her head no. Gavin says No all the time too but well he's three. He also often says - No, not yet. Where has he heard that?

Lately when I ask Gavin a question like - Why did you do that? or What do you want? He answers with a shrug - 47. I am a bit worried that he has discovered the secret to life or something - because I can't figure it out. But boy oh boy 47 is a versatile number it seems to explain a lot of things.

Today is the kind of beautiful fall day that I love. Sunshine, crisp air, crunchy leaves, one kid that won't sleep, another that is vegging a bit, and a husband on the roof (don't ask).

I'd like to wish our little Internet heart baby friend Gavin a happy birthday, he is one today - quite a milestone!

Well, I hope you all enjoy your fall days too.

Sunday, October 07, 2007

Thanksgiving weekend

It is Thanksgiving weekend and we are stuffed with turkey and other goodies. Why do we celebrate holidays with food? I don't know but it sure tastes good.

We are so thankful for so much in our lives. We are thankful for our kids, for our families, for our friends, for our Country, for our jobs, for our health... The list just goes on. We are particularly thankful that our friends Kim and Ben welcomed their new little girl Ryan (hope I spelled that right) safely.

Saying you are thankful can sound very trite. It is the sort of thing that sounds empty compared to how it feels. God has been very gracious to our little family and he has blessed us more richly than I had ever imagined. There is no way to communicate this. Perhaps I could ask you to sit and reflect and count your blessings for a minute. I'll wait.

See that feeling - that is how we feel!

Thanks!

Monday, October 01, 2007

Bird sightings






Yesterday, in the afternoon Wes and I took the kids to Fish Creek park. There is a spot where the river is really calm and there are lots of rocks. There is just a bit of a steep embankment to get to that spot. So I don't take the kids by myself, but because Wes was there we took them.

We were playing by the water when Wes said - Look an eagle. We all stopped and stared (there was a Russian family near by too). It couldn't have been more than 20 feet off the water. The thing was massive. It was a bald eagle too.

It was so close that we could hear its wings beating! It was absolutely amazing. I don't think I have ever seen an eagle so close. It perched on the opposite side of the creek at the top of a large cliff. I took a picture but my point and shoot camera doesn't have a very good zoom. I cropped it in closer with photoshop but it is pretty rough. But you can tell its an eagle.

WOW!

Isn't it amazing when we have a chance encounter with a very special sight? Last week when I had the kids in Fish Creek park we saw a baby snake - I wasn't quite so excited by this!

Sunday, September 30, 2007

Morning conversations




This morning in an effort to get both kids to sleep a bit longer we brought them to bed with us (well brought Gavin - the little weasel of a girl was already there). Gavin was insisting on having his chocolate milk. Yes we give him chocolate milk - we put just a tiny bit of choc. syrup in his milk. We couldn't get him to drink plain milk.

I got up to get him his milk and he followed me. Bronwyn started to cry and her daddy said to her - no, you stay here and go back to sleep.

I added - Bronwyn you can listen to your father.

Wes said - Gavin you sleep too. You too can listen to your father.

Gavin answered - What d'you say?

Well, fair enough he can't listen to us if he can't hear us.

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Walking, dentists, sleeping and other happenings


I caught a tiny bit of Bronwyn walking on video. She is very reluctant to do it when I can catch it on video. I guess she'll never have a career in show business. It is very exciting watching her explore and try new things. This is such a great and yet scary age.

I went yesterday to the dentist for the first time in - well - I'm not going to say!! The material point is I went and had a very thorough (long) exam. The dentist told me that my teeth are in very good shape considering how little I go to the dentist and considering I don't floss.

OK - so not to get cranky or anything - but who does floss? I am sorry but I know one or two people who have dental work, crowns etc, who have to floss so they do - but no one else does. Maybe it is just me - maybe I'm the only one who is sloppy about flossing.

On a much happier note, both kids slept through the night last night. WHOOO HOOO. I have just changed all the bed sheets yesterday. I said to Wes this morning that I should change the sheets everyday maybe that would help. But, well I don't floss every day, so why would I change the sheets every day.

I put Gavin to bed last night and we forgot his blanket. When I brought it in for him he snuggled it up and said - Hers my best friend. I said - oh is blankie your best friend. He said - yah, her name is (long pause) layI (doing my best to spell that as he pronounced it). I said - oh blankie's name is LayI. He nodded and said - Yeah. I said - Oh, well there is two surprises. I didn't realize blankie was female nor did I realize she had a name. I guess we can always learn something new.

video

Monday, September 24, 2007

Monday again



Where does the time go!
It seems like life has just slipped into fast forward. It is funny,in the summer we are so busy doing things and yet the days linger on. This time of year everything is just a blur.
Bronwyn has just started walking - very tentative and short bits but definitely walking. I am going to try catch it on video tape. It is just so hard to predict when she will do it. She is not inclined to preform for the camera.
Gavin is getting big! I just can't believe it. My favourite thing he says these days is - mimber (remember). He'll say - I am going to see Pops, mimber. It is super cute. I am clinging to the super cute moments these days to remind myself what a lovely little boy he is. He has decided to assert himself and life has become a bit more difficult than before! Wow. But he is still a wonderful little boy, Mommy is just a bit more tired at the end of every day.
Wes and I sat down and watched a movie last night- both of us together - in relative quiet. It was a real treat.
I am hoping to get an opportunity to get some family photos soon - if I manage to get some I'll be sure to post them.

Sunday, September 16, 2007

Life is funny

Just the other day I was complaining that I had nothing to blog about. Not two days later and I have so much I could say that I don't know where to begin. So I'll just tell one cute little story from our weekend.

Saturday we drove out to our friends Kim and Lindsey's new farm. We wanted to get some rocks for a project in our back yard and they have lots - so we drove up there and collected some. We met Kim and their two boys Aiden (5) and Liam(2). So now for the cute stuff.

I said to Aiden - Do you know who this little girl is? He replied - That is Bronwyn. I nodded and he added - I helped save her? I prayed.

Not much to add after that eh?

Friday, September 14, 2007

A beautiful day



I can't believe what a beautiful day it is here. I love the fall. It has always been my favourite time of year. Its funny because spring is really the time of renewal and fresh starts but that is how I feel about fall. Maybe because we spend the first 20 some odd years of our lives (25ish for some - ahem) going to school in the fall.

Fresh air, fresh starts. OK so winter is coming and its getting dark earlier - but tell me you don't still get excited come September??

Well - I love it!

Gavin wakes up every morning saying "Snow today!" I am not that enthusiastic for snow - but his Grandma told him that his birthday usually comes after the first snow. So the sooner is snows the sooner his birthday. He frequently asks me - You want to go to my birthday?

Well - I better go see where my daughter is. She is quiet and stealthy and before I know it she's into something or on something or under something! Best go track her.

I'd like to wish you all a lovely warm, sunny, crisp fall day!