Thursday, January 29, 2009

Monday Morning Dance Party

Mondays are Mondays, no matter what. 
This one is no different! 

So, to liven things up a bit...
We love to dance. Didn't say we were good at it, but love it anyway :).
So so fun. 
If you feel the urge, join along in our funky play list:....

1. My new dance-around-the-kitchen favorite - A New Hallelujah
2. 80s rock is still fun, even after all this time - Sweet Child O'Mine
3. Shameless, really - Highway to the Dangerzone 
4. Pardon the room full of dancers :) - Let's Get Loud!
. One more for the road! - Walk This Way!

PomPom Folly


I'm not sure what possessed me...
Was it the glimmering $2.50 walmart price tag?
Was it an eager attempt to bond with my daughters over "crafting"?
Was it madness?

I'm still not sure.

Whatever the motivation, we had a pompom craft factory happenin' over here yesterday morning. Valentines Day crafts. Between the glue gun, the young one pulling on my pants trying to eat the cord, and the older one thrilled because she actually got to sit on the table (consequently a few key pieces were missing!), I'm actually surprised we got all three critters done without superglueing anyone to the floor!

It was an exercise in ... ahem ... patience, to be sure (there's - or mine!?).

Here are our delightful Valentines gifts, all ready to be shared.


As you can no doubt tell, I'm not a stellar photographer. Bear with me. I'm a mom with a digital camera, but I'm shameless in my thousands attempts of learning how to use it! :)

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Thinking outside the box

Hmmm. Not sure why, exactly - but every so often something strikes me, and I think - now why didn't I try THIS before!?

There is nothing profound that will follow, I can assure you - but this winter I started asking myself Why have I never tried growing YELLOW beans instead of the standard GREEN

See, I told you it wasn't profound!

Well, maybe it is, at some level. Because I tend to do things because they've always been done that way. Change isn't avoided, just - well, feels weird. So, instead of trying to grow some un-native-to-my-prairie-soil plant, whose seed has to be flown in from who-knows-where-ville, I decided to liven things up by going yellow instead of green.

I think the yellow ones may be more tender. And I'm wondering if my toddler will eat them :). She has mightily declared she doesn't like beans :). So, we'll see.

Monday, January 26, 2009

The Law of Unintended Consequences

According to Wikipedia, the Law of Unintended Consequences goes somethin' like this :) ---

Unintended Consequences are outcomes that are not (or not limited to) the results originally intended in a particular situation. The unintended results may be foreseen or unforeseen, but they should be the logical or likely results of the action. They can be grouped into roughly three types:

 - a positive unexpected benefit usually referred to as serendipity or windfall? - a negative or perverse effect, that may be contrary to what was originally intended? - a potential source of problems.

This maxim is not a scientific law; it is more a warning against the hubristic belief that humans can fully control the world around them. Stated in other words, each cause has more than one effect, and these effects will invariably include at least one unforeseen side effect. The unintended side effect can potentially be more significant than any of the intended effects.

Possible causes of unintended consequences include the world's inherent complexity (parts of a system responding to changes in the environment), perverse incentives, human stupidity, self-deception or other cognitive or emotional biases.

Robert K. Merton listed five possible causes of unanticipated consequences:? - ignorance (it is impossible to anticipate everything, thereby leading to incomplete analysis)? - error (incorrect analysis of the problem or following habits that worked in the past but may not apply to the current situation)? - immediate interest, which may override long-term interests? - basic values may require or prohibit certain actions even if the long-term result may be unfavorable (these long-term consequences may eventually cause change in basic values)? - self-defeating prophecy (fear of some consequences drives people to find solutions before the problem occurs, thus the non-occurrence of the problem is unanticipated)

?I can assure you, none of this was going through my mind when we purchased ... the scooter.


Here, I thought we were selecting a toy used for basic motor skills, and some one-year-old fun.

But no. It was another case of the LOUC in full swing. Imagine that 5 o'clock witching hour (those of you with kids just shuddered, I know) when another rousing round of BAM! ensues.

?What's BAM! you might ask? 

It's this pretty little bad boy...?

?being driven into the kitchen cupboards (and table and walls!) by this little sweet thing....?

?Whilst shouting BAM! at the top of her lungs.

I claim stupidity!!

Sunday, January 25, 2009

Songs to groove by :)...

Happy tunes :)....
I've Got a Feeling. Black Eyed Peas.
Forever. Chris Brown.

Tunes that speak to my soul :)....
It Ain't Easy. Jason Upton.
All That I Can Say. David Crowder Band.


I have always loved reading. Whether it is a good novel, a thought-provoking piece of non-fiction or even a dull text book, there is always something to be learned!!

What's on the night stand...
Hold On To Your Kids. Gordon Neufeld, PhD & Gabor Mate, MD. I'm reading this in small doses. Lots of practical insights, have a few questions about the theories he's working with. But loaded with tons of good things to think about and experiment with!

To Live Is Christ. Beth Moore. I am using this as a bible study aid for those mornings when I can get up earlier than the littles :). It is very powerful. The chapters are concise, full of wisdom and insight, and I am learning a lot!!!

Upcoming reads...
For every book you read, there are thousands you can't. Choose wisely." A librarian friend. Some of these are recommendations from others, some are titles I've stumbled on through other books/sources. Any suggestions :)? Please email me:

  1. Return to Earth. Edwin (Buzz) Aldrin.
  2. Too Small To Ignore. Dr. Wess Stafford. 
  3. Book of Negroes. Lawrence Hill
  4. Digging to America. Ann Tyler
  5. Still Alice. Lisa Genova
  6. People of the Book. Geraldine Brooks
  7. Water For Elephants. Sara Guern
  8. The Thirteenth Tale. Diane Setterfield
  9. The Tenth Gift. Jane Johnson 

Reading Reflections...
Just a few thoughts about the books I've read.
The Worship Leader's Handbook. Tom Kraeuter. So so so practical. So easy to read. Not simple to implement though!!! I wish that I'd read this years ago, before I'd ventured into the role of music leader. It would have addressed many many issues I've encountered along the way. As I near the end of my term as music leader, and not sure if or when I be involved in this way again, it gives me much to reflect on as I seek to finish well!

The Glass Castle: A Memoir. Jeannette Walls. - If you want a moving, funny, full memoir of one gal's dysfunctional, yet somehow intact, family. An incredible story of what becomes "normal" and the process of discovery of a different way of life. Had to put it down sometimes, because there is so much to this story. But it is extremely well-written, heavy topic but easy to read. Highly recommend.

The Genesee Diary. Henri Nouwen. - Nouwen's collection of thoughts, spiritual insights and struggles during the seven months he spent time with a community of Trappist Monks. Brilliant!!

Becoming Olivia. Roxanne Henke. Ooh la la. One of the best fiction books I've read in a long time. One woman's journey through the valley of depression and anxiety attacks. So real, so powerful. For those of us who've have struggled with these life issues, it gave voice to those symptoms and experiences that are very difficult to describe.

Girl Interrupted. Susanna Kaysen. Wow. One gal's stint in a psychiatric ward. For anyone who is interested in getting into the field of psychology, this would be an excellent fiction read. Insightful, beautifully written, witty - and very, very thought-provoking. That fine line between sanity and beyond becomes even more blurry.

White Oleander. Janet Fitch. As this young woman works her way through the foster care system, she becomes a woman of remarkable strength of character. I could not put the book down!!

Saturday, January 24, 2009

The sweetest words...

Me - "I love you, babes."

Little M - "I love YOU, babes."

And settling in for a Saturday rest.


Friday, January 23, 2009

I'd love to hear from you!



Books (Authors - because all their books seem to speak to me!!)...
Henri Nouwen
Richard Foster
Lisa Samson


Talking :)
Crafting - not saying all projects "turn out," but I enjoy working with my hands :)
Soaking in the tub :)

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Oh for the love of those funny forwards...

Rick was in trouble.  


He forgot his wedding anniversary.  His wife was really angry. 
She told him "Tomorrow morning, I expect to find a gift in the driveway that goes from 0 to 200 in less than 10 seconds,

The next morning Rick got up early and left for work.
When his wife woke up she looked out the window and sure enough there was a box gift-wrapped in the middle of the driveway.
Confused, the wife put on her robe and ran out to the driveway, and brought the box back in the house.
She opened it and found a brand new bathroom scale.

Rick has been missing since Friday.

Aint's she a beauty!?

By this, I mean the shawl pattern, not the actual model, though the model is a lovely gal :).

This is the project du jour. A funky little project to busy my antsy fingers while I indulge in some Law & Order quiet time in the evenings (okay, L&O is not exactly inspirational bedtime material, but I've loved loved the show ever since I was a KID and Matlock was no longer aired!!). 

I have beautiful red wool for the project, have reached Line 14 already, and will let you know how it goes! 

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

My Little Piece of Earth: Tomatoes

Beefsteak -- Hybrids -- Romas -- Reds -- Yellows -- Better Boy -- Early Girl

Any of these names sound familiar :)? Well, if you've gone tomato-plant shopping recently, you'll know what I mean. More options than a Payless store full of shoes!!! In our present deep freeze, I can only DREAM of the warm spring evenings when I will browse the nurseries, select stocky looking plants, and come home and nestle them root-deep in warming soil.

And until then, I intend to do a little research :).

I always get overwhelmed when I go plant shopping, because there are a bazillion options (well, narrow that by about a million because of our zone 2/3 area!) and I don't know what to look for so I just randomly pick something that looks --  well -- tomato-y, and call it wonderful.

This year, I swear I'll do it differently :). I'll let you know how it goes....

Until then, here are a few pointers to help the selection process:

Beefsteak/Supersteak - great slicers for sandwiches and those great bbq burgers! Big Beef is a great new hybrid
Early Girl/First Lady - juicy, tangy, compact fruit; available varieties provide a range of plant sizes
Better Boy - Larger fruit than the Early Girl
Hybrids - can blend the "best of both worlds" - large, meaty tomatoes with more disease resistance and/or earlier yield
Yellows - lower acid taste; novelty
Romas - less seedy, firmer, fruit; great for canning, sauces and salads

Staking vs. Bush - Bush are more compact and require less support than the staking variety; however, that certain special tomato might be worth the extra staking effort!

Great questions to ask - what do I want to use these tomatoes for? Do I prefer bush or staking? Can I get a hybrid with the qualities I want in a tomato with the added benefits of scientific adjustments :P?

More info can be found in the T&T Seeds Online Catalogue

Oh yum. I can't WAIT until that first sun-ripened tomato sandwich!

Monday, January 19, 2009

It's true. Perspective IS important!

The difference between a mountain and a molehill is your perspective. 
 ~  Al Neuharth ~

Today is the first day - in my entire life - that I am wearing glasses held together by duct tape. In a flash of inspiration on the weekend, I actually ORDERED a NEW PAIR OF GLASSES, just knowing that these ones were on their last ... arms. And I was right. In the middle of romp-on-mommy time yesterday evening, my youngest crawled onto my head and there was that sound. That "knitch" sound and I knew that my 4th pair of glasses were a done deal. But since I planned ahead on the weekend, I should be walking straight again in 5-7 business days (yeah, in Canada, apparently, we no longer have 1-hour-optical solutions :)!)

So, I am getting a life-lesson on the importance of perspective. I am discovering that a perspective-gone-awry can lead to serious injuries - headaches, misjudging distance, stairs can be an issue :P, entrenched wrinkles (from all the extra squinting) - and just the overall fuzzy view of life.

Kinda like when my internal perspective is off. A skewed view can result in strained relationships, internal angst and - more headaches :).

For those who may not think that perspective is essential - try walking around with lopsided glasses. You might change your mind!

And kudos to planning ahead!! 

Friday, January 16, 2009

Cabin Fever!

Wow. I'd give just about anything to sit in the sunshine and play in the sandbox right about now! This prolonged -40 bit is gettin' old FAST!

This summer marks a bit of a milestone too. Sweet K will turn 2, and there will be so much more freedom in the great outdoors! For the past 3 summers, we've had babes to tend to - which doesn't much lend itself to getting outside quickly or easily.

It often required far more motivation and planning than I had energy for :).

I guess it's also right about now that we make all those nasty new years resolutions - we'll see how it goes, say, come July!
But for now, it's summer time dreamin' :)....

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

ode to summer time

these days, with the wind chill clockin' in at balmy -30-something (hey, and that's warm compared to the -48!!! they are forecasting tomorrow!!), it is imperative that we remember - summer is a'comin'!! i feel funny writing about this, considering i just posted about how much i love snow and winter and sparkles and yada yada. but every gal has their limits. when words freeze before they leave your mouth - you know it's just too plain cold out there! 

so. today at lunchtime, little M & I had a conversation that revolved around all the dreams we have cooked up for those warm summer days. sweet K finds herself along for the ride!! here are a few mirages on the horizon that keep us going....

 - the beach. nothing like cleaning warm, gritty sand out of a diaper. :) but there's nothing like that sun-kissed feeling either. vitamin a (or c or d or whatever it is that we're supposed to absorb from the sun!) therapy. slathered in coconut-smelling sunscreen. 
 - going for walks. right now, our little pooch is outside for a grand sum of 5 min. every day. he's very efficient when it comes to having to get out and go to the washroom when it's so cold that snot freezes. he even walks on two legs!! (the front ones!) i am soooo looking forward to wagon rides and stroller walks, but even MORE SO, strappin' on the ipod and taking Diggy for a walk!
 - camping. last year we invested in a mondo-tent. it's huge. thank you canadian tire! our girls love it! and, sweet K will be walking by that time (hopefully!!) and it will be fun to be outside (and easier to set her down on her feet instead of her bum!). 
 - heading to the park. okay. i'm not sure WHERE they get it from, but it's a well-known fact that KIDS have ENERGY! nothing like an hour on the jungle jim to make the bedtimes a little easier. and hey, where other moms gather, and snacks and juices flow aplenty, there is ADULT CONVERSATION! 
 - gardening. veggies - i can't wait to plant a little container garden for each of the girls. cherry tomatoes (of course), peas and maybe some carrots, just for fun :). we'll have plenty of garden produce, and i want to plant some of these mini pumpkins for the girls and i to craft with in the fall. AND raspberries and strawberries, and FLOWERS OF COURSE!
there is so much to look forward to, and the dreaming also sweetens this day. a cozy home day, with hot tea, quiet time and a great novel. who could ask for anything more!?

Sunday, January 11, 2009

Snow fall

The Snowfall Is So Silent
The snowfall is so silent, 
so slow, bit by bit, 
with delicacy it settles down 
on the earth 
and covers over the fields.
~ Miguel de Unamuno ~

The snow is falling ever so gently here on the Manitoba prairies, and I LOVE IT! Trapped in a snow globe, I always feel --- and I love the rush of a fresh start, a clean journal page, a story just itchin' to be written. And now, snow angels. Kids love to make snow angels :).

And I do love snow. Weird, I know.  

Always have. Good thing, too, because I am born and raised in Prairie-land, and like it or not, we get our fair share of snow around here. I have always been facinated by snowflakes and their artisitc beauty. (Yahoo!! I am not the only one! Check out SnowCrystals for someone who has made it their life work to study crystal formations and photography! Stunning!!)

I love the dazzling beauty. But, even more so - I find myself drawn to the One who has made it all.....

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Oh yeah - we went to Las Vegas!!

I may have mentioned that this year's festivities, in part, took place in Las Vegas.
You know - flashy lights, a little warmer, casinos :).

Our time there was good. And hey, getting out the door is a lot easier without snow suits!!
But getting there. Oi Veh. Let me share the tale....
 1. Bad customer service - my phone call/ticket information is apparently usually an inconvenience.
2. We arrived at the airport with time, however I got scolded by the agent because we were only 2 hours early instead of 3. She was supposed to issue a ticket for Kezia (who flies free but apparently has to pay taxes, which, of course, is something we learned AFTER booking the tickets - even though I had an AC rep on the line while BOOKING the tickets and she didn't tell me a thing) - and it took an hour for her to tend to my request alone. She had no idea what she was doing, she kept leaving the desk for like 10-15 MINUTES at a time trying to get answers, AND AC reps informed us numerous times that this is their BUSIEST time of the year so we shouldn't be so frustrated. WELL. Out of 10 desks, there were only 4 on staff. 1 was for executives only, so she never helped anyone. The other was for baggage check-in, so she sat there without serving customers too. The third was helping to solve a united airlines glitch and the 4th was "helping" me. The 3rd DID try to help after Jon came over and vented, but #4 told her that she should go back to her task and mine could wait (again, it was my fault for following the AC phone reps instructions and arriving at the airport in proper time, but not her fault that she didn't know what she was doing. Her name was Lorna :(.) #3 helped solve the problem, and after much finger tapping and sighing on my part, we were on our way.
3.We rushed through security and customs - only to find out that our plane was delayed. Actually, we didn't know. We were waiting by the gate and our boarding time AND flight time came and went. No announcement. So, Jon finally asked and oh yeah, our plane was 45-60 min. late. Good - except that it was supper time and we were supposed to have had enough time for supper before rushing through security. Fine. There was a deli - but they were on coffee break for half an hour and couldn't take money for a sandwich. THEN they charged $7 per sandwich (of course, you find this out AS your are purchasing your sandwich - 2 pieces of stale roll with deli meat, some mustard and fake cheese - because they don't post the prices!). THe AC rep assured us that all flights in Denver were delayed because of weather so we shouldn't have any trouble making a connection. Oh yes, the "connection". In Denver. With 2 babies, 5 carry-ons, 2 very-tired parents --- annnnd it's 9:30pm. SO, on the plane I ask the United flight attendant about all of this. TWO TIMES she gave me the gate number, but didn't see anything about flight delays. That meant we had about .... 20 min. to get OFF the plane .... THROUGH THE AIRPORT .... and TO THE NEXT PLANE - With 2 babies, 5 carry-ons, and 2 very-tired parents. We land in Denver, got off the plane and start heading through the airport. Jon refuses to move frantically, since it is their problem and they will have to get us on some flight anyway.
4. So, we head to the gate. We hear, over the intercom, our flight information at a DIFFERENT GATE - and our airplane is LEAVING --- BOARDING CLOSED!!! -- but maybe, maybe there are TWO flights to Vegas. Who knows. It's a busy place. However, we arrive at the gate that we were instructed to go to, except that airplane is STILL BOARDING --- FOR HOUSTON. OH HOUSTON, we have a PROBLEM. So, we back track with 2 babies, 5 carry-ons, and 2 very-tired parents, and get to our gate JUST AS THEY ARE SHUTTING THE GATE DOOR. NOOOOOOOO!! They take pity on us - not sure if it was the babes, the gray hair sprouting everywhere on the smell of sweaty armpits, but whatever. They stopped the plane, got us on, and off we went.
5. Sigh. We land in Las Vegas, and the airport is HUGE. HUGE. We finally find Jeff, and finally discover that our car seats did not make it to the airplane that we did. They promise to courier them over in the morning. But, this being the busiest time of the year and all, they showed up around supper time! So, we go to get our car rental. However, the line-up is 1 hour long, even though we have a reservation, AND it is 12 Vegas time, meaning 2 in the morning for our girls!!! Jeff figured that we'd have no problem getting one in the morning, but we did, so we didn't end up with a car rental after all.
I am happy to say that we flew west jet on the way home, and it was paradise. We arrived in plenty of time, walked in, were greeted by friendly staff (even though one of our bags was 6lbs over the limit) and landed in Winnipeg in less than 2.5 hours. We took the night flight, which was very nice. The airport is quieter, there is less stress, and people in general are very sleepy and very mellow :P.
I am also happy to say that there are NO PLANS FOR TRAVELING IN THE NEAR OR DISTANT FUTURE. At this point, I would rather poke my eye out. Almost. It's twitching furiously, anyway!!!

Sunday, January 4, 2009

Say it ain't so.

One of the joys - and .... challenges :) - of living with a chatter box is the unending amazement at what little M will say next. Really. Some of the things that come out of that little person truly astound me. They make my laugh; they make me think.

This Hallowe'en, we had the opportunity to have "Walter the Jack-O-Lantern" sitting on our table. With Oct. 31 come and gone, it was time to move an old and somewhat moldy Walter to his new and rightful home - the garage. Little M was dismayed with this, but after showing her his lovely green-and-black-collage insides, she agreed - it was time for ole Wally to go. Fast forward. We are sitting at the table, enjoying our gals-only lunchtime banter. I made some unusual sound (which, for me, is not often so unusual :P), and Little M asked me what was wrong. Uh - I say - I am getting old. In her sweet 2.75 year old way, she asked, in all seriousness -are you going to get moldy too? Arrrgh.

One day, wilst sitting at the aforementioned lunch table, Sweet K was giving her mama a hard time over her lunchtime menu. Little M asks what is wrong. Your sister - I say - is not cooperating. To which she replies - Why am I not surprised. !!!

On a less-than-stellar day - and I have those more often than I care to admit - I was showing my frustration over some of Little M's theatrical antics. She was lying on the floor, on the narrow path between the kitchen and the dining room table. Mommy, are you mad. No. Are you sad? NO. Are you happy with K? Yes. But are you frustrated with meeeeee? Not anymore :).

Mommy, are you talking to me or to yourself? Funny thing - I was talking to myself!

After a long day, I actually made it to the TV. Hey - when that's all the way downstairs, and you're not even sure there's anything good on (we're the only people probably left in North America that don't subscribe to cable OR satellite, but we honestly don't feel like we're deprived!!) - that can feel like an accomplishment. It had been alllll quiet when I left upstairs, but when I turned on the monitor, I could here Little M quietly singing to herself - A waaaay in a maaanger noooo crib for a bed. The little Lord Jesus lay down His sweet heeeeead..." I tell ya, the sweet singing of a toddler can cure just about anything!

Little M's feisty spirit gets her into trouble sometimes. Especially these days, when we're focusing on kindness towards others (especially mommy!) and sharing (especially with sister!). But I love her vim and vigor. It challenges me, teaches me, humbles me. Every day is a day of learning!

Friday, January 2, 2009

Was it only three years ago....

Back on December 21, before the rest of the mayhem of December unfolded, we celebrated M's THIRD birthday! Officially she's no longer a toddler, and in actuality has been a "little girl" for quite some time. Mature for her age, she keeps us entertained with her non-stop chatter and challenged with her ... passionate expressions :). I may have mentioned those before!
But, on Friday, December 19, we hosted her first "friends" birthday party! What fun we had :). As a result of time spent at Sea World, M wanted a DOLPHIN BIRTHDAY PARTY. A quick search of the internet reveals some pretty elaborate festivities! Since I lost my shopping list, since Dollarama was closed (thanks a BUNCH!), and since I didn't want to staple yards upon yards of blue fabric to my walls (yes, some people do that for a dolphin birthday party!!!), I had to be ... innovative. Creative. And quick about it, too!!

Gettin' ready for the par-tee!
Here we are, getting ready for the par-tee! Baking buns (whoever said that many hands makes light work has not worked with kids in the kitchen!!), the mobile from our light fixture and the pretty blue table cloth that Daddy had to pick out (since Dollarama was closed and all!!)
And the cake. Oh the dolphin cake.
Everything has to have a story, right!? Well, it is Thursday night before the party. And time to decorate the cake. And time to finish the laundry and pack the bags to Las Vegas and get the kids in bed and get the house ready for the morning. When, in our balmy MB -40 climate - our furnace breaks. Yup. Stops pumping heat. Quits. Finished. So, whilst placing an emergency call to MB Hydro, I am decorating M's bday cake. Thankfully, I had crafted the sugar-cookie dolphins earlier in the day!! It was a flurry of icing sugar and food coloring, but I finally got it done.
Oh, and the furnace was repaired - but only the NEXT DAY! Thanks GOODNESS for space heaters!!

M - birth - 3 years
Right from the get-go, M has been a fire cracker! Wow. There's no wake-up call like that infant crying from the back seat on the way home from the hospital! Somehow, we found our way through those early months, and pretty soon new became manageable,manageable became normaland normal became -

! She has brought so much joy (and a few tears!!) to our hearts! What a spunky little gal!

My sweet little girl!
Little M - you are such a GOOF! Our lives are so much brighter because of your presence, our prayers so much deeper, our laughter so much more frequent! A bit belated, but then again this December has been a little wonky!
Happy Birthday, little one.
We love you!!

Thursday, January 1, 2009

Happy New Years Day!

I would like to start the year off right - by creating a list of completely unreasonable expectations and not anticipating on keeping a single one :). But, alas, I will not bore anyone with the hundreds of things I'd love to change about myself, and switch to a more entertaining topic instead.
Like, where on earth did the month of December go!? Oh yes, now I remember. It whizzed by in a sea of lost shopping lists (don't even get me started!!), birthday party mayhem, a heater that went on the fritz (the NIGHT, of course, before the big birthday bash, at 10pm between cake decorating and packing bags...), Christmas celebrations and a trip to Vegas. Yeah, I threw in that last one for fun :).
Approximately 2.5 weeks ago, I freaked out in traditional Leah-style, desiring to eradicate the month of December from the calendar year. However, we survived to tell the tale. Let me share a few highlights with you :).
We celebrated M's 3rd birthday. Somewhere, sometime between December 21, 2005 and December 21, 2008, my beautiful first-born daughter stretched from a tiny little infant (8lb, 2oz) to a witty, expressive, talkative little girl. I will do a whole post on her birthday, which was simple in comparison to some elaborate events I read about online (you find out all sorts of things when you google "dolphin party"!!!)
But I cannot begin to convey the stress that results when Dollarama closes at 9pm during holiday times. C'mon people! When Walmart is open 24/7, you can at least extend your hours to those brief windows of time when the rest of us are able to get away for a few quiet moments!!
Anyway, Thursday night before the party, the day when I'm running around like a maniac trying to get laundry done, suitcases packed for Las Vegas, children tended to, birthday party stuff ready --- the furnace breaks. Yup. When it's -40 loveliness outside, it's 10pm at night, and the timing juuuuuuust isn't great! So, at 10:03pm I am simultaneously on the phone with the gas company and decorating M's dolphin birthday cake. Who says moms can't multi-task :)?
Long story short - the furnace couldn't be fixed that night. The birthday party rolled on without a hitch. Some young fellow came the next day and fixed the furnace (we did warn him about the houseful of children under the age of 4!), which was very nice, we got our bags packed AND we flopped into bed at a delightful 2amAnd we think that 11:30 feels late!!!
Friday, December 19, we celebrated M's birthday with her little friends. What fun a birthday party can be! It turned out very well, all things considered.
The next few days were full of preparation. We celebrated Christmas with family, got a few last minute things done and then...
VIVA LAS VEGAS! A family member had invited us to share holiday time with them in Vegas. So. We went. Traveling with babies isnot the same as traveling with adults, but we all lived to tell the tale. Sort of. I think I lost a few days of life due to stress, but we flew in, flew out and enjoyed our time in between. I will save a whole post for our Vegas extravaganza. There is much to tell :).
And then, finally, we landed. We came home. We settled in. We took time to look through presents, stories, laundry :) - and breathed. Oxygen is very important, so I hear, and I find that when life is harem-scarem, I forget to do that. Helps to clear the head and heart :).
Next year, stay tuned for Advent: Unplugged. !! I long for an Advent season that is less dramatic and more conducive to reflection, worship and appreciation.


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