Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Four

She's four years old today. My table is covered in Princess gift bags, Princess wrapping paper, Princess clothes, Princess shoes, Princess movies. She keeps saying "It's wonderful, Mummy! Just wonderful! It's gorgeous!"

What happened to the baby, or the toddler? Where have the last four years gone?

Also, I just finished making a Black Forest Cake for Mary's birthday, and it looks not half bad.




When did we get from this:




To this?

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Not So Merry

I just spent the morning in the city. Frances is still sick. Sicker, really. She's had a fever hovering just below 40 degrees celsius (104 Fahrenheit) since yesterday afternoon. She's not eating, she's lethargic and very obviously in pain somewhere. We took her to the doctor, got her checked out, went for bloodwork, got some new antibiotics and are now home. The Dr. said that if her temperature stays as high as it is, that tonight we should take her to the hospital. Being a natural worrier, I tend to jump to WORST CASE SCENARIO MADE FOR TV!!! conclusions when things go poorly, especially with my children. The fact that Frances also has several scary and oddly unexplainable bruises is wigging me out just a little bit. I am trying not to freak out. I'm trying to stay calm and rational, and on the outside, I'm succeeding pretty well I think. Inside though, I am a quivering mass of worry and panic.

Anyways, Merry Christmas to you all. May your holidays be better than mine.

Monday, December 15, 2008

Sick

It's been a while, eh?

The last month has disappeared in a haze of germs and coughing. Frances, Mary and I have all been sick pretty for pretty much the whole month. Fun fun. Today we took the girls for a recheck, the Dr. took one listen to Frannies chest and sent her off for x-rays. Turns out Miss Fran has pneumonia. I feel like a stellar parent.

Anyways, other than being sick, and trying not to freeze (-46?? WTF??), we haven't been doing much. Preschool, dance and skating are taking up Mary's time when we are able to leave the house. Frances' vocabulary is developing in leaps and bounds. She is getting very good at making her desires known. She also knows some sign language, which she uses frequently.

Ian's Christmas party for work was last month, before the long stretch of sick. We had a wonderful childless weekend of party, shopping, fancy dinner and concert going. It was a wonderful refresher, and it served to remind me why I married Ian in the first place. I wish we could go out on child free dates more often that twice a year.

So, that's really all that's been happening. The next couple of weeks will be filled with Christmas preparations and baking, administering medication and fighting over toys.

If I don't update this again before the time comes, Merry Christmas to you all, and have a wonderful New Year!

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Politics and Love

So, when it comes to Canadian politics, most of the players are...well...boring and old. It's no surprise to me that most Canadians paid more attention to the American elections than to our own. There's not a lot of charisma in Ottawa. Anyways, one politician that I have always loved is Justin Trudeau, the son of Pierre Trudeau - the closest thing Canada has ever had to a political Rock Star. I don't know much about Justin, save that he is super cute, extremely charismatic, and he lives in Quebec. Also, if my dreams lately have any truth to them, he is amazing in the sack. For the last week I have been fornicating in my sleep with Justin in all sorts of exciting ways that I won't go in too here. He has my vote.

(Better Justin Trudeau than Brad Wall, eh?)

Thursday, November 13, 2008

My Favourite Quiz Result Thus Far.

Your result for Reincarnation Placement Exam...

The Pleasure Dome of Kublai Khan

34% Civilization, 74% Humanity, 44% Urbanization, 51% Danger, 70% Exoticness, 32% Chaos, 78% Hedonism.


You were a little difficult to place. You want a world that's exotic, but still very civilized and under control. And your answers indicate you don't give a fig for technology, education, urbanization and all the benefits thereof -- but you still have a great fondness for the human beings who tend to pursue these things.



Well, we have something for you that should be something of a treat. You won't get out much. But we don't think you'll mind.



In the Pleasure Dome of Kublai Khan, you are born and bred to serve pleasure all your days. Physically beautiful and mentally geared toward pure pleasure, you will spend your allotted days subjected to all manner of hedonistic play and sensual experimentation. You need never suffer a moment of pain, nor of sobriety. Cuddle up, honey, relax and enjoy yourself.



You kinky pervert.


Take Reincarnation Placement Exam
at HelloQuizzy

Friday, November 07, 2008

Halloween

Hello there,

Things have been trucking along as usual here since my last post. Mary is getting busier and busier. She now has Preschool two mornings a week, Dancing one evening, and skating two afternoons a week. We had our first skating class this past Wednesday, and Mary seems to remember everything from last year. She is well on her way to being a better skater than I am. Her language is also developing apace now that her hearing is pretty much perfect. She's so smart, and she loves to learn. We have a picture book of animals that we got her last year for Christmas, and it is her bedtime favourite lately. Every night we sit with her, and she tells us every animal in the book. "That's a Bamboon! That's a 'Rangtang. That's a Bottle-Nose-Dolphin. That's a Red-Eyed Tree Frog. Look! A Wombat!" God it's cute.

Frances is also growing and turning into a neat little person. She's still annoying from time to time, but man she's adorable. She loves people now, and has whole conversations in her own special language. When Mary was this age the noises she made very guttural (now we know she couldn't hear, so it makes sense), so I used to joke about her speaking Klingon. Frances uses long, intricate sounds, her tone rises up and down like she's actually conversing. I believe she's speaking Elven. Frances is also at the age where one discovers the joy of the temper tantrum, and man, can she throw a tantrum to make my ears bleed. She flings herself to the ground, screams, and not content with just that, she also pounds her head on the floor in rage. It's really quite appalling.

Anyways, here are some halloween pictures for your enjoyment.





Monday, October 13, 2008

Happy Thanksgiving

Words are unnecessary.





Thursday, October 09, 2008

Beautiful Princesses

Once again it looks as though I've neglected my blog. For a whole month this time! Jeez.

Things here have been interesting. I spent a week away from home, all by myself, and it really was quite fantastic. I flew to Abbotsford (Vancouver), picked up a rented car, and the next day drove my mother and her cats to their new home in Edmonton. Things went mostly smoothly with only one or two little bumps. The drive was wonderful, it was a perfect day to go through the mountains. My mothers new appartment is really quite fabulous, and in a perfect area for her. A walk away from downtown, a walk away from the grocery store, and less than a block away from major bus routes. I'm awfully happy for her, and I can't wait to visit again. I also got to do some visiting in Edmonton which was nice. I spent a few days in Edmonton, and then I hitched a ride to Saskatoon with Rico and his roommate. There was a Firefly game in S'toon, which was fantastic and most of the Edmonton crowd was there. I also ran into and caught up with an old friend who I haven't seen in about 15 years.

Mary started preschool while I was away, and she seems to be really enjoying it. She goes every tuesday and thursday morning for two hours. It's nice to get a break from her and spend some time alone with Frances, and it seems to be doing wonders for Mary. She also started dance class this week, every tuesday evening at 5:30. Once skating starts on mondays and wednesdays she is going to be a very busy little girl. She can't remember anyones name though, so she's told me that her dance instructor, her preschool teacher and three kids in her class are all named Sarah. I got suspicious pretty quick - there can't be that many people named Sarah in a town of 500...

Frances started walking while I was away, and now she is rarely not on her feet. Ian calls it a "zombie lurch" more than a walk, but she's working on it and she gets smoother every day. She still isn't sleeping through the night.

Mary is still crazy about Princesses. I really have no idea how I managed to raise such a girly little thing, but rather than resist I've decided to run with it. For the last few weeks Mary has been asking me to paint her fingers - I assumed she meant her fingernails. So, today I did it, I painted my 3 year olds fingernails. She was very careful and didn't move her hands at all while the polish dried, and she is so darned proud of her "beautiful princess fingers" that she can hardly contain herself. I couldn't get a very good picture of her hands, but here are a couple of the best -





She's still walking around with her fingers spread like that right now, about 90 minutes later.

Saturday, September 13, 2008

Employment

Wow, it's been a while, eh? Hopefully someone still reads this and I'm not just talking to myself.

Things have been good, I guess. Finances are still tough, but I have a job interview for a position which I will likely be the most qualified by a mile. It's working at a veterinary supply store in Regina, and it's really kind of perfect, as long as it pays well enough to justify the gas and daycare costs. It's a monday to friday gig, 9 - 5:30, which, like I said, is pretty much perfect. I'm nervous about the interview, I'm nervous about working again (it's been an awfully long time), but the more I think about it, the more excited I get. It'll be nice to get out of the house, to be able to afford new clothing, Christmas gifts, maybe even an evening class (I'm thinking bellydancing or Tribal).

I've been meeting more people - in the city of course. I have pretty much written off Milestone as a lost cause. I'm kinda sick of being ignored, and watching my daughter be ignored too. I won't go into specifics now, because you've heard it all before, but living in a small town blows hairy goats.

My mother is officially moving to Edmonton, she has a job and an apartment. I'm flying out to BC on October 1st so I can drive her and the cats to their new home. I'm pretty excited about having her so much closer to us, it will be so much easier for us to visit with her on this side of the mountains. I'm also giddy excited about getting to see my E-Town friends after getting Mum moved in. I am trying very hard not to be bitter about the fact that if she had gotten her shit together and moved back eighteen months ago, we would not have left Edmonton. I am a little concerned that my time helping Mum move will make it harder for me to get a job, but the plane ticket has been bought, and I'm not going to leave my mother in the lurch...so...

We are expecting frost tonight, so here is a picture from our summer vacation in the Okanagan, one with me in it, and one that I don't hate too terribly much. I'm not fond of the hot hot heat of summertime, but there are certainly some lovely memories made when the sun is shining brightly.

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Pessimism

Those of you who know me well may have figured out that I am an eternal pessimist. I try not to be, but I often get wrapped up in my vision of the worst, and can't imagine anything but that vision happening. That's where I am right now.

I have to get a job. A full time job, probably in the city. Being a one income family is not working anymore, and we are more than broke. Our bills and groceries in a month add up to more than we bring in. It sucks. So, I'm going to get a job. We talked about me getting a job here in town, most likely at the gas station. I have decided though, that if I am going to get a job, I want it to be a decent one. So, I am looking at clerical type positions in the city. I type quickly and well, and I have lots of customer service experience, so I should be able to find something in time. The problem is, I really, REALLY don't want to work. It's not that I'm lazy, it's that the thought of someone else raising my daughters makes me physically ill. The things I will miss out on, the fact that I'll only be with them two days a week while someone else gets to be with them the rest of the time, the fact that I won't be around for Mary's first day of school, for the day that Frannie decides to actually walk on her feet, I'll miss all the funny conversations, the fights, the fun. It really upsets me. I couldn't sleep last night, this morning I keep crying...I'm a mess, and so far I've only applied for three jobs. I hate it, I don't want it, and I don't have a choice. Blargh.

Also, we ate meat that has since been recalled. I'm not thrilled about that either. I am a bit of a hypochondriac (though not as much as I used to be), and when Mary had some gastrointestinal upset this morning the first thing that went through my brain was "OMG! It's listeriosis! We're all going to DIE!" I quickly calmed myself, but I'm still a little worried. I suspect her tummy problems had more to do with McDonalds for lunch yesterday and the stinking heat, but I'm still watching her like a hawk. Symptoms of Listeria poisoning can show up anywhere from 2 to 90 days, so I have a lot of time to worry. Of course, when I'm working, I guess the babysitter'll have to watch out for that, eh?

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Arranged Marriages

I have a friend in town who has two little boys. Her older guy, P, is a year older than Mary, and her younger is about 6 months younger than Frannie-Lou-Who. Mary and P have played together a few times and they seem to get along pretty well. P's Mother's name is not Charlie, but that's what we call her for some odd reason. I keep telling Mary, "Her name is R___," and Mary says "Yes! Charlie IS a Beautiful Princess Mama!" So, we call her Charlie. Anyways, Charlie shared a couple of conversations she had with P, and I would like to share them with you.

P's Musings on Relationships and Marriage.

P - Mom (Charlie is a Mom, unlike me, I am a Mum), so, when you were kids, Dad was your brother, right?
Charlie - Ah, no. No, Dad was never my brother.
P - Oh. So, dad was your brother?
Charlie - No. Let's not spread that rumour around town. Dad was NEVER my brother.
P - Oh, okay. So you and dad were friends when you were little?
Charlie - Yes, that's right. Daddy and I were friends when we were younger, before we got married.
P - So, you were Daddy's girlfriend when before you were married?
Charlie - Yup.
P - Oh! Just like Mary is my girlfriend, right?
Charlie - Uh. I guess so, yeah.
P - That's great! When Mary and I grow up we are going to get married, just like you and Dad!
Charlie - Really?
P - Yup!



P's Further Musings on Relationships, Age, and Why a Knowledge of Geography is Important when Considering Marriage.

P - Hey Mom, was Dad older than you when you were kids?
Charlie - Well, is Dad older than me now?
P - Yeah.
Charlie - Well, what do you think?
P - Mom, I don't know. Was he?
Charlie - Yes, Dad was older than me when we were little, just like he is now.
P - Huh. So, I'll always be a year older than Mary, right?
Charlie - Yes, you will always be older than Mary.
P - That's Great!
Charlie - Why is that great?
P - Because when Mary and I get older, we are going to get married! But only if she knows where Regina is.
Charlie - Why does she need to know where Regina is to marry you?
P - (Rolls eyes) Mom! Because Regina is where you go. When you want to get married you have to go to Regina.



So, there you have it. So long as Mary can find Regina, she's got a husband in waiting.

Things are going well this week in spite of the miserable heat. On Saturday evening the Prairie Players had a gathering at the farm of one of the members. It was a grand old time, though I'm thinking that I am far too old to consume as much coconut rum as I did that night. Poor Mary and Frances did not have a fully attentive mother on Sunday.

Potty training is going Very Well. We still have occasional accidents, but puddles are rarer and rarer these days, and Mary is more and more willing to go on the toilet. Yay! Our garbage in the last two weeks has been cut pretty much in half now that we are not using diapers for Mary, though she still wears a pull up at night. She is becoming even more fiercely independent now that she uses the potty, which is a blessing and a curse.

I have decided on a Project to keep me busy, but I'm not sure how it will work. I got a book full of recipe's for artisan sourdough breads, and I thought I might take a page from Goody's book and work my way through the book, baking one bread a week. My problem is that these breads require 5 different sourdough starters, and all sorts of fancy flours, not to mention some equipment that I don't have. I wouldn't have a problem with the starters if I had someone else who would like to take what I don't use and bake their own bread, but the closest sourdough baker I know is Goody, and Nebraska is a long way to ship fermenting flour, you know? Anyways, once I get a baking stone for my oven I will get more organized, I can't do much without one of those anyways.

Not much else is going on. I'm going to apply for a part time job at the local grocery store, if I can figure out how to write a resume when I haven't had a job in four years. If anyone out there can give me some advice, it'd sure be appreciated!

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

The Potty Balloon

Well hello there! I was going to name this post "Panties!" but I figured that might draw an internet icky or two here to leer at pictures of my children. There are Websites!! Targeting YOUR CHILDREN!!!!!! OMFG!!!!! (That was for you, Goody).

Ahem. Anyhoo. Potty training is going...well, it's going, and that's a good thing, right? I have stuck to my guns and Mary wears panties during the day, except when we go shopping in the city. We have good days and we have bad days, but on average she gets to the potty about 50% of the time. Not so bad. As long as I remind her to sit, she will now use the potty, but if I'm not on her, we have messes. Today was a very good day, only 2 accidents. Yesterday was a very, VERY bad day. At about four in the afternoon, I walked into my terrifyingly silent hallway and found Frances sitting in the middle of a giant puddle of warm urine, splashing happily. All the books say not to get angry or yell, but GAWD is it hard sometimes.

Ian is working a lot these days, which is kind of crummy because Christ am I lonely, but is a good thing because...well, you know how lonely I am? We are more broke right now than I am lonely. Which is a lot. The mortgage payment this month is going to bounce, we owe the town $2500 in property taxes and $300 for water and sewage. Amazing, where is this money going to come from? I have been considering getting a job, but because I am a big, dumb, uneducated schmoo, any job I get will pay next to nothing, and not be worth it after subtracting daycare and gas to get me into the city. Besides which, if I get a job, hate it, and quit, we won't have the write off for taxes come spring, even if I only work one day. I may apply for a job at a book store though, I think I would like that. If I'm going to be torn away from my darling children (who I have not yet sold to the gypsies, tempting as the thought may be), I want to have a job that I don't hate, you know?

To be honest, I'm not THAT lonely, I guess. I mean, I'm miserable, and I wish we had never left Edmonton (biggest mistake I've made in a long time, that was), but things are getting better. The girls and I spent saturday afternoon at Cenobyte's place in Lumsden, and it was extremely pleasant. Mary and her littlest guy, E, got along like they have been buddies for years, and I had a nice time chatting with Ceno and her adorable husband. It's possible that this whole working two days a week thing might actually be good for me. I may meet people. Adult people. Adult people who will be my friends, possibly even people with whom I have something in common. That'd be nice, real nice.

Monday, August 04, 2008

Subconscious

I had a bizarre dream last night. Well, maybe not too terribly bizarre if you take into consideration the amount of times I have watched Dr. Horrible's SIng Along Blog in the last week or so. Anyways, I dreamed that I was at a....thing... an award show perhaps. All I know is that it was televised, and there were lots of famous people. I had fantastic seats, but I was there on my own because Ian was at home watching the girls. At one point Nathan Fillion walked past, and no one but me knew who he was. I jumped up and yelled "that's Nathan Fillion!" and waved. He smiled and waved back to me, but no one else noticed. Then, Neil Patrick Harris walked past, looked up at me, and said "Hi there Jenn!" Then NPH walked over to Nathan and said "I need to talk to this fan." NPH came back to me and struck up a conversation like we had been best friends all our lives. Then things got odd, and I was making out with NPH. I remember I kept saying that Ian was watching on TV, but NPH told me that he would never notice. Then I told him that I thought he was gay, and he said that he had said he was gay as a cover, but really he wasn't. Then more stuff happened that I can't really remember, and I ended up marrying him and having his baby via invetrofertalization because he really was gay, and while he enjoyed kissing me he didn't want to have sex.

Odd, I know. Of course, NPH is the first famous boy I ever had naughty dreams about in my life. I adored Doogie Howser M.D. when I was in my early teens, and had a raging crush on NPH then. Dr. Horrible has just reminded me of how much I adore him, I guess.

Anyways, back to the real world. We took the girls to Buffalo Days, Regina's annual summer fair. It went far better than we expected for many reasons, one of the largest being the fact that we showed up Sunday morning when they don't charge admission. Yay! That was twenty dollars in our pockets. The girls were amazingly well behaved, Mary had a blast and was absolutely fearless on the rides, and us adults enjoyed ourselves too.

Ian has a lot of time off right now, the long weekend has worked out nicely with his summer schedule. We have thrown caution to the wind and put Mary into real panties now, no more diapers and pull ups. So far we have had no luck whatsoever, and lots of messes. She still refuses to use the toilet, and while I hate to sound like a broken record here, I'm at my wits end. Nothing at all has worked, we've tried every suggestion in the book. Now I guess all we can do is be consistent, keep at her and try my hardest not to loose my temper.

Other than that, not much is going on. Today I made hamburger buns, my first attempt at buns, and they turned out perfectly. Tomorrow we are cleaning house, and possibly going to the swimming pool. Next week I'm going to try to convince Ian that we should go to Craven and buy some farm fresh veggies.




Friday, July 25, 2008

Did you know?

As of yesterday I have been married for four years. Huh. Crazy. I bought Ian Season one of Dexter (wow. What a show!), and he is buying me an exercise bike (I asked for it, so it's okay).

Ian's birthday is Monday, so for a joint anniversary/birthday par-tay we are going to see Batman tomorrow, followed by a steak and beer. Then I'm taking off on my own to go GAME!

Four years, a new province, two children and four cats. How time flies.

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Summer

Well hello there! It's been a while, eh?

Summer is going okay so far. We had a wonderful time in the Okanagan at the beginning of July. The trip there was very long. We drove to Calgary on day one, which really isn't a bad drive at all. It turned out to be about nine hours because we did need to stop a few times for the girls (who were remarkably well behaved). The driving is pretty easy, prairie pretty much the whole way. We did drive through the highest point east of the Rocky Mountains which is, believe it or not, right here in Saskatchewan. We spent the night at Ian's aunts place and headed out in the morning. It was a nice visit with Aunt Sue, she's got a lovely little home and was a wonderful host. We ended up staying much later in the morning than we intended, so we didn't get the early start we had hoped for. The second day of driving was...well...hot. By time we got to Banff it was well over 30 degrees out, and the drive through the mountains was brutal. It got up to about 43 degrees, and our air conditioner does not work; the only time we had cool air was when we could coast downhill. We didn't get to my uncle's place in Peachland until almost 7 that evening, but thankfully they had just started supper, so we got to eat.

The time in Peachland was wonderful, though we now realize that vacationing as an adult is not the same as it was when we were kids. Our time was all about the girls, we worked very hard (and often didn't have a lot of fun) to make sure the girls had a good time. We did get to my favourite winery on the Naramata Bench as well as a beautiful lavender farm in Naramata. I know for a fact that we will do our best to get out again next year, and every year after that. We hope to find a relatively cheap tent trailer to make the trip even more fun (fun. right. camping with small children.) and affordable.

My uncles place is really amazing, indescribable really. The main house is huge and goregeous, there are a couple of guest houses as well as a trailer and ample camping space down at the beach. The property is beautiful, there are golf carts to get up and down the incredibly steep hill to the beach/park area, and the swimming pool...well...it's the nicest pool I have ever swum in. It's an infinity pool, saline (so no nasty chlorene smell/sting), it has a beach entry for the little guys to play in, and a "grotto," which is a little waterfall with a spot you can sit behind it and look out over the edge and down to the lake. I wish I had a better camera, and a better brain. I hardly took any pictures.

The trip home was rather eventful. Half way through our week in Peachland we got a panicked phone message from Ian's Aunt Sue. Something had come up and we couldn't stay with her on the way back, she wouldn't be home. Um. We were at a loss. We couldn't afford a hotel in Calgary, and even if we could, it was Stampede, there was no way we would be able to find a room. We finally decided that we would drive home through Edmonton instead. That meant a 13 hour day of driving through the mountains. Surprisingly, the drive was better than the one out - the weather was much better, and the highway was less busy and nicer all around. We spent a day in Edmonton, visited Ian's family there, and headed home. Boy was it nice to get to our house. The cats and house survived, and we were all happy to sleep in our own beds.

Since we got back we have done very little. Relaxed, avoided the rain and thunderstorms, straightened up the house, tried to get on top of the awful weed problem in the yard. Frances has started to walk, which is pretty impressive, though she does still prefer to crawl. She's so proud of herself when she takes a couple of steps it's hard not to laugh. She stands there, beaming and bouncing up and down, her little chest all puffed out. She is also learning words - she can say Hi, Mumma, Daddy, uh-oh and up. She's still pretty horrid to be around from time to time, but she's finally developing a real personality.

Anyways, here are some pictures of our holiday. The last three were taken by either my fabulous cousin Sarah, or her equally fabulous husband, Captain Fun.



We've done the trip to Alberta a hundred times, but for some reason we decided it needed to be doccumented this time.





My family at a rest stop in Banff National Park





Miss Mary on the patio by the pool.




The beach.




Dad and Frances.




The whole gang on Canada Day.




View from the patio, over the pool and beyond.

Friday, June 27, 2008

Family Vacation

We leave tomorrow for a trip to Peachland, in the Okanagan. My far too wealthy uncle has a beautiful summer home (compound) there and has the family out every year for Canada Day. We are going to stay for a full week, and I can't wait. We have a small kink in our plans mind you, and that is that Frances is currently suffering from a low grade case of the measles due to her vaccination last week. Yesterday she had liquid (and boy, do I mean liquid) poop, and a frighteningly high fever. The bum problems and the fever seem to have gone, but she is still extremely spotty. The nurses all say that as long as the fever is gone she should be fine, and she's not contagious. I must admit, I'm not thrilled about a 16 hour drive (in 2 days) with a sick baby and a toddler who is extremely possessive of her own window. Wish me luck, and pray for me.

Anyways, I'm off to visit with my good buddy, Ogopogo. See y'all in a couple of weeks!


Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Enneagram Test

A bizarrely accurate enneagram test stolen from Miss Cori.



Your result for The Quick & Painless ENNEAGRAM Test...

4- the Individualist


you chose BY - your Enneagram type is FOUR (aka "The Romantic")


"I am unique"



Romantics have sensitive feelings and are warm and perceptive.



How to Get Along with Me



  • Give me plenty of compliments. They mean a lot to me.

  • Be a supportive friend or partner. Help me to learn to love and value myself.

  • Respect me for my special gifts of intuition and vision.

  • Though I don't always want to be cheered up when I'm feeling melancholy, I sometimes like to have someone lighten me up a little.

  • Don't tell me I'm too sensitive or that I'm overreacting!


What I Like About Being a FOUR


  • my ability to find meaning in life and to experience feeling at a deep level

  • my ability to establish warm connections with people

  • admiring what is noble, truthful, and beautiful in life

  • my creativity, intuition, and sense of humor

  • being unique and being seen as unique by others

  • having aesthetic sensibilities

  • being able to easily pick up the feelings of people around me




What's Hard About Being a FOUR


  • experiencing dark moods of emptiness and despair

  • feelings of self-hatred and shame; believing I don't deserve to be loved

  • feeling guilty when I disappoint people

  • feeling hurt or attacked when someone misundertands me

  • expecting too much from myself and life

  • fearing being abandoned


  • obsessing over resentments

  • longing for what I don't have



FOURs as Children Often



  • have active imaginations: play creatively alone or organize playmates in original games

  • are very sensitive

  • feel that they don't fit in

  • believe they are missing something that other people have


  • attach themselves to idealized teachers, heroes, artists, etc.

  • become antiauthoritarian or rebellious when criticized or not understood

  • feel lonely or abandoned (perhaps as a result of a death or their parents' divorce)



FOURs as Parents


  • help their children become who they really are

  • support their children's creativity and originality

  • are good at helping their children get in touch with their feelings


  • are sometimes overly critical or overly protective

  • are usually very good with children if not too self-absorbed



Renee Baron & Elizabeth Wagele

The Enneagram Made Easy

Discover the 9 Types of People

Harper
SanFrancisco, 1994, 161 pages




You liked the test?

so S P R E A D I T ! tell everyone!!!
(use Quick-Paste below)


you wanna know MORE?

so check out, what Wikipedia says about your type...



...even more you'll find in Google


or do you prefer to









You are not completely happy with the result?!

You chose BY


Would you rather have chosen:

  • AY (EIGHT)
  • CY (SIX)
  • BX (NINE)
  • BZ (FIVE)

    Take The Quick & Painless ENNEAGRAM Test at HelloQuizzy

  • Tuesday, June 24, 2008

    Good News

    We just saw the Ear doctor for Mary for the last time in a while, yay! He has finally removed the giant, rock hard plug of ear wax that has likely been in Mary's ear since she was a wee thing and he is confident that she can now hear as well as you or I. This is very good news for a variety of reasons, not the least of which being that I don't think I can handle pinning her down as she shrieks and sobs while the doctor pokes around in her ear anymore.

    One week from this moment I will be keeping my date with Ogopogo. I'm giddy with excitement.

    As promised, here are some pictures of my wee equestrian.



    Friday, June 20, 2008

    My Horse, Money

    Well, it's been a while. I've been lollyblogging yet again. It's not that I'm too busy, I just don't have much to talk about here anymore. I mean, there's only so many times I say the same thing without sounding like a broken record.

    I'm Lonely
    I'm Sad
    I hate my life sometimes
    I think we made a big mistake moving away from Edmonton
    My children drive me crazy but are occasionally cute.

    It's the pity parade, over and over and over again.

    Anyways, things have actually been better the last little while. We had some wonderful visits with Star when she was in town, driving through to and from Winnipeg. I got to go to Edmonton for a very short visit, but I got a whole pile of visiting and socializing done. It was fantabulous to see all my friends, I sure miss them. I miss everyone so stinking much...but that's not what this post is about, right?

    Anyways. The visit was wonderful. There was a Prairie Players meeting Wednesday night, which was aggravating in the extreme, but I was reminded that there are a few people in this town that I actually like. All I need to do is call them up and I will occasionally have people to chat with right here at home.

    The weather is fantastic right now, warm and sunny. We bought the girls a sprinkler thingie to play in on the lawn. I took a bunch of pictures yesterday and they are incredibly cute. Unfortunately, Ian doesn't think that The Mart will print them for me because the girls are nekked in pretty much all of them.

    Today I took the girls to a petting farm about 50 minutes north of here, in Lumsden. It was fabulous. Frances was mostly unimpressed, though she freaked out when the donkey sneezed. Apparently donkeys sneezing are incredibly frightening. Who knew? Mary loved every second of our time there. She kept telling me "Mummy, you love it here. I love it! I LOVE THE ANIMALS!!" She was very cute. Oh, and, Mary rode a horse for the first time in her life! It was very exciting as she is absolutely horse crazy these days, she even has an imaginary horse that she has named Money. She was an absolute natural. It was just a squat dwarven horse, but Mary had absolutely no fear. The gentleman who ran the place was as amazed as I was and he even asked if she had ever ridden a horse before this. He said that normally kids her age get frightened after a minute or two, but Mary stayed on the horse for about 5 minutes or so and could have kept going. Unfortunately my camera batteries died after only two pictures (which I will post here soon). Both Mary and Frances were amazingly well behaved all afternoon, and it was an all around Good Day. Yay!

    The next week will be spent organizing the house. We leave for our vacation to the Okanagan in a week. I can't wait! Hopefully the weather will be nice.

    Anyways, that's all for now, I guess. I shall leave you with a picture of Frannie enjoying the sun.

    Tuesday, June 03, 2008

    Negative Nellie No More

    So. I realize that I may have been a little negative the last several times I've posted here. Things really aren't that bad in spite of disgusting miserable babies and stupid small town assholes. Todays post will be about the good things that I have enjoyed over the last few weeks.

    1. Return of my libido after a very, VERY long hiatus. Enough said there, I think.

    2. Birds. The birds that have been attracted to my feeders are amazing and a delight to watch. The other day I had a whole flock of American Goldfinches, and they looked like giant yellow and black butterflies flitting from branch to branch in my trees. I've seen more different species in the last month than I have in my whole life, from a tiny Ruby Throated Hummingbird in my apple tree to a goofy looking Pileated Woodpecker. I also have an owl living in one of the big poplars in my back yard, at night I can sit on the deck and listen to him hoot - it's a wonderful relaxing way to end the day.

    3. Frances is finally better, hopefully for good this time. Friday morning and early afternoon was awful and I spent much of my time in tears. She woke up from her afternoon nap and was 100% better. It was really quite bizarre.

    4. I made new friends (I hope). I got out to Lumsden to see Alan, Jon and I was able to meet Cenobyte B, her adorable husband and her two gorgeous little boys. Mary got on famously with her three year old, and there was only one point during the several hours we spent in their back yard that we had to separate them for fear someone was going to clock the other. It was a fabulous afternoon, the girls had fun, I had fun, and I felt better afterwards than I have in a long time.

    5. I'm going to be playing in a Kingdom Come game! Yay! I'm eagerly obsessing about the game and I can't wait to get the evil show started.

    6. Mary is so cool. I know, it's kind of dorky to describe a three year old as cool, but she really is. She's sweet, loving, and gentle, and while she often drives me crazy not a day goes by that she doesn't make me smile. She adores Frances and loves to boss her around, and even when she's mad at her sister I can see her concentrating on not hurting her. Her imagination grows every day, and I am constantly amazed by the stories and games she comes up with. I really am blessed to have such a wonderful little person in my life.

    7. Ian. He works so hard, and I know he does it so that I can stay home with the girls, and to provide for us. He drives me bonkers (Mary must get that from him), but he is almost always patient with my moods and I know he loves me. It's nice to feel secure like that.

    8. Bread. I have found the best bread recipe yet. It makes two perfect loaves for sandwiches and toast, and home made bread is not only cheaper than the store bought stuff, it tastes better too. To top it off, this recipe is super easy to make, even if it's a little time consuming.

    9. We are going to Edmonton for the weekend in less than two weeks. Yay! We aren't going to have a lot of time to visit, unfortunately. We're driving up on Friday, home on Sunday.

    10. We are spending a week in the Okanogan at the end of the month. Double Yay! All my family will be there, including cousins I haven't seen in years and all their babies. I can't wait to see the gang and show off the girls.

    There, life isn't so bad, is it?

    Friday, May 30, 2008

    On and On

    Frances is still sick. Still. It's now been three weeks since she first got ill, and there is no sign of it getting better any time soon. I spent my day yesterday trying to get advice from some sort of medical professional. I know exactly what the doctor will say if I bring her in - she's got a virus, nothing they can do, these are the signs of dehydration, if she shows any of them bring her back. I KNOW all this. What I want is for someone to tell me how long is it safe to give her gravol so she doesn't barf all over everything (which she does if she doesn't get gravol twice a day)? How long can I give her pedialyte? What can I do for the brutal diaper rash? How long can I expect this to continue? What the HELL? How long does this have to go on before we are concerned about more than just dehydration? WHAT THE HELL? How do I keep sane when my days are filled with diarrhea all over everything, miserable sobbing baby, more diarrhea, vomit, and more misery? HOW DO I STOP FROM LOOSING MY MIND??? Ahem. But no one will tell me anything other than take her to the doctor. I am unwilling to spend the obscene amount of money it now takes to put gas in the van to take Frances to a doctor who will just tell me what I already know. Why can no one help me? I spend my days vacillating between tears and rage, with a little despair thrown in just to make things fun.

    Anyways. A friend is coming down from Saskatoon tomorrow, and I was supposed to meet him at another persons house who I don't know but would really like to know. Unfortunately I can't now. I am doomed to a friendless, diarrhea filled small town life. Loneliness, sick children and Ian will be my only companions. I feel sorry for myself, can you tell?

    Saturday, May 24, 2008

    The Arts

    Ian had to get up early for work this morning, around 6:30 or so. Apparently Mary got up at the same time. Ian decided to be nice, he let me sleep and while he was getting ready he fed Mary and changed her bum. Then he left for work. Without letting me know that Mary was up and about. A couple of hours later Mary came into my room bearing a glass of water just for me (she can get to the water cooler and use it all by herself now. Yay. Isn't that super?). I told her I was getting up, but she patted my hand, tried to tuck me in and told me to sleep. At this point I got suspicious. I got even more suspicious when I spotted the green permanent marker all over her face and hands. Swallowing my dread, I got up and stumbled to the kitchen. The fridge was wide open, a chair in front of it. An apple was half eaten, as were several cookies. My hutch, my beautiful natural wood finish hutch was COVERED in green sharpie ink. I flipped. I yelled, and then I realized that I was very close to beating the small child cowering in front of me, so I picked her up and put her (locked her) in her room so I could calm down and do some damage control. There is nothing to be done for the wood, the ink won't come out. Ian thinks that he can sand it, but I'm not so sure. I've recovered from my anger, but I still see a little red when I look at the green ink. Mary spent an hour and a half in her room, I told her she could come out when she apologized to me, and it took her that long to decide she was sorrier than she was stubborn.

    She also had a raging temper tantrum at lunch today. She refuses to eat anything she considers baby food, which is pretty much anything that Frances eats. Now that Frances has graduated to finger foods, Mary's list of acceptable foods (always small) is shrinking. Today I made noodles, but because Frances was eating them, Mary freaked and refused to eat "baby foods." Needless to say the screaming went on for over an hour, and Fran was happy (though somewhat bemused by the carry on) to eat all her noodles and some of Mary's.

    I love being a parent. Really. I do.

    Thursday, May 22, 2008

    From Away

    Can someone please tell me what exactly I need to do to have the people in this stupid town include me and my children? Please? I'm relatively sure they aren't doing these things intentionally, but man I'm getting pissed off.

    It started with play school, do you remember that? I went to the meeting, told them about Mary, gave them my phone number and said that I would be bringing Mary the very next class. I showed up, and no one was there, I showed up the next class, no one was there. It turned out that the teacher was ill and they forgot to phone me. She was very sick and they weren't sure when she would be back, so I asked them to call me when she was so I could take Mary. Months later I ran into one of the ladies and she mentioned how they were all sorry I decided not to bring Mary to preschool. Excuse me? So I asked, surprised, if the teacher was well. Oh yeah, she had started back less than a week after I had spoken to the mother in charge of everything, and no one bothered to phone me. I was annoyed.

    Two, maybe three weeks ago, I called the contact about soccer, I wanted to get Mary involved. The woman I spoke too said that they weren't sure that they would even be having soccer this year, they didn't have enough people willing to help out. I said I would be happy to help out if they needed me. The woman took my number and said that I should expect a call. I asked her to call me even if they didn't need my help and soccer was going to happen. She promised to pass my name and number along to the phone person, but if I didn't get a call that meant that soccer wouldn't be happening this spring. I didn't get a call so I assumed that they didn't have enough helpers and that it wasn't going to happen. Then, today, I go to the Co-op to pick up some milk and there is a sign that soccer is starting on the 21st (last night!). The sign wasn't up on Saturday when I was there last, and not a soul called me.

    What the hell?? Is it because I am From Away? Most people have been friendly, if not terribly welcoming, but seriously. All I want is for my child to get involved in things around here, to be able to play soccer, go to play school, make some friends, I don't particularly care if they include me or not. That's a lie, I would like to have some friends, to be able to get out of the house without forcing myself on people, but that seems more and more unlikely as time passes. The play helped a bit, but I've not socialized with anyone from the play since it ended, aside from saying hello when we bump into each other in the street. I'm lonely, and Mary is lonely, and I don't know what to do to make it better.

    I knew moving to a small town would be tough, but I had no idea that people would be this...well...unfriendly.

    Sunday, May 18, 2008

    Let it end

    So. Frances is better. Like, 100 percent better. She is happiest sitting in her highchair shoveling cheerio's and chopped up banana's into her mouth. It's all good.

    Mary....well, Mary is not so good. The liquid explosiveness started in earnest yesterday. This morning she barfed prodigiously on the couch. I should have known. Actually I did know. She was laying listlessly on the couch, and suddenly she sat up. I looked at her, narrowed my eyes and said "Mary, honey, do you need to throw up?" She looked at me, whimpered, and exploded. After she was done she looked at the mess in alarm and said "Oh dear. Oh no. Oh dear, Mama, I sorry." Ugh. I much prefer baby puke to toddler puke. Finally, something I prefer about babies. She seems to be feeling a bit better now, though she is still pale and sad looking. So, there is no end in sight, I am trapped in a house that smells of diarrhea and vomit, it's beautiful and sunny outside on this long weekend, and I'm not enjoying the weather, or getting any yard work done. Ian has escaped to work, and I have never envied his job more than I do today.

    Wednesday, May 14, 2008

    Hell Week

    Yeesh. The last several days have been pretty awful to say the least. Here's the synopsis.

    Friday
    Starts as a day like any other. Halfway through the day Frances offers up a...surprise...in her diaper. I think "Hmm. I wonder if she's finally teething." I deal with two or three more surprises (which are rapidly becoming less surprising) and carry on with life. She's still cheerful and playing, so I don't worry too much.

    Saturday
    The day starts with an overflowing diaper. Frances is still cheerful, but not all that interested in solid foods. That's okay, she's sick, so I just give her bottles. Late at night after the diarrhea turns her bottom into hamburger (diaper rash is no fun) I decide to phone the 1-800-dial-a-nurse number. The nurse suggests I take her to the doctor. It's late at night and Fran is sleeping peacefully, so we put it off till morning.

    Sunday Morning
    We get up to yet another overflowing diaper, and I hop into the van and take her to the city to see a Doctor at the medicentre. While in the waiting room Frances wiggles, laughs, flirts and is generally adorable. She flirts with the Doctor and happily goes to his arms when he picks her up. He says we have nothing to worry about, she's still socializing, drinking her formula and well hydrated. Go home, don't worry. So, I do that.

    Sunday Afternoon
    The diarrhea gets worse, every hour, in fact. She stops eating, she stops smiling. At 5:30 or so we get her to drink some formula which she fountains all over Ian. I call my dad and step-mum. Michael has successfully raised three of these little buggers without killing any, so I figure she might have some good advice. The two of them hop in the car, pick up some pedialyte (which we cannot get here in Milestone) and head out to visit us. Michael manages to get Frances to drink a couple of ounces of pedialyte while Mary drags my Dad around the house showing him things. ("Look Grandpa! The kitchen! A fridge! The stove, careful, hot! Come with me. The TABLE! My CHAIR! Baby's chair! Come with me. The LIVING ROOOOM! COUCHES!")

    That night I manage to get a couple ounces more of the pedialyte into Frances at about 10:30. When she wakes up at 3 AM, she refuses to drink any at all. We try some formula just to get something into her, and she barfs all over poor Ian again.

    Monday
    We wake up. Frances does not. I go into her room to find her white as a ghost and rag-doll limp. I worry. I stress. I try to get her to drink something. She refuses. I call the 1-800-Nurses number again, and the nurse suggests I take her to the hospital, like, NOW. So I do. I spend monday in the hospital while she gets fluids via IV. It is unpleasant, but not as bad as it could be. She is so sick that she doesn't even cry while they poke her in several places to get the IV in. By the end of the day she is drinking pedialyte on her own and keeping it down, so we are discharged.

    Tuesday
    A good day. Frances is miserable, but feeling well enough to let me know exactly how miserable she is, which is a good thing. She drinks a lot of pedialyte without vomiting, she only has 3 episodes of diarrhea all day long. I give her some formula before bed, for which she is pathetically grateful. She doesn't vomit. She sleeps well, even though I do not. She must be on the mend, right?

    Today
    Not so good. Leaky diarrhea diaper first thing in the morning. Two more bouts of diarrhea in 2 hours. Vomiting. Refusing to drink pedialyte. Now Mary is complaining of not feeling well and refusing to leave my bed. I have gravol suppositories for Frances, but have you ever tried to shove something up a struggling babies bum all by yourself with no helper to pin said baby down? It's a beautiful, warm, sunny day outside already, but I'm stuck inside a house which smell vaguely of diarrhea and vomit with two sick children. Motherhood rocks. Frances is sleeping right now, thank God, but she'll be up soon, and it'll start over again.

    Pray for me, my friends, that I might once again see the light of day without looking through a haze of germs and puke.

    Tuesday, April 29, 2008

    He's a Wanderin' Man

    Wesley came home! It's amazing, I had completely given up hope and accepted that he wouldn't be back, and here he is! Yesterday afternoon I wandered through the living room and glanced out the window. There was a cat across the street drinking out of a puddle and I asked Ian if it looked familiar. "That isn't Wesley," he said. I was already out the door, and lo and behold, it was Wesley! I had to corner him in a neighbors garage to catch him, but as soon as I picked him up he started purring and cuddling. The other cats were a little puzzled to have him back and they spent most of the rest of the day with their noses shoved up his bum, but Mary was thrilled to have him back. She kept talking about him and petting him, and it was the first thing she said to my Mum on the phone. I'm taking him to the vet on Thursday just to get him checked out, but he seems to be fine, if a little scrawny (and amazingly muscular). What a guy.

    Hey, you should read this, it's awfully neat. The letter from Charles Manson is bizarre and kinda creepy in a non-sensical sort of way.

    Friday, April 18, 2008

    Stupid Old Men

    So, did I mention that no matter how old people are, they still seem to enjoy indulging in "DRAMA!"? I am so glad the whole dinner theatre is done, mostly because of the "DRAMA!" and not having to deal with it any more. As most of you may know, in small towns there are giant cliques, and it is next to impossible to penetrate the clique. Oh, they're friendly and nice enough, but you know, you just know, that no matter how nice they are, you'll never, ever actually be considered one of them. I had forgotten that fact, stupid me, until it was brought back with bone crushing force on Saturday evening. You see, I have spent a great deal of time with these people for the last several months. I've gotten to know them, they've gotten to know me. Yes, there are a few people who I don't particularly like, but no matter where you go there will be people who rub you the wrong way, and I'm rather certain that the feeling is mutual. Anyways. Saturday night, about half way through the first act, I made the mistake of glancing up at the sound booth. Now, this is something that I have been warned about from the very beginning. If you look up there, expect to have the old guys who do lights and sound try to screw you up. Anyways, I looked up there and one of the guys was up on his feet, waving his arms around. I panicked, just for a moment. What was wrong? What was he trying to tell me? Was my fly undone? Was my boob hanging out? What was it? I quickly realized that he was just screwing with me and I carried on, chuckling internally and feeling sheepish for being caught by them. At intermission I was sharing the story with a couple other young newcomers who have become fast friends of mine. I started my story with the sentence "Those stupid old men up in the sound booth caught me..." I tried to continue, but someone sharply interrupted - "What did you just say??" I repeated myself, grinning good naturedly. I was rudely told "One of those men is Bernadette's husband, you know!" I replied, slowly, confused "yes, I know that...anyways...I accidentally looked up there and they were really screwing with me today..." Once again I was cut off. "I know for a fact that you can't see anything up there when you're on stage!" Shouts Bernadette. I blink, appalled that she's actually angry with me. I try to explain "but...you can...and they were waving..." I stammer. Yet again, I get cut off as Bernadette storms out of the room and Shannon gets in my face "Just drop it!" and follows Bernadette. Patty follows the two of them, but storms back in the room a few seconds later to find me with my mouth wide open, completely stunned. "Drop it right now, Jennifer!" she shouts in my face and storms back out. At this point I am practically in tears. I didn't think I was being offensive at all, especially as these people know I call my children "miserable little wretches", I call my husband an asshole, I call the director a crazy old lady right to her face and everyone laughs. My friends are stunned too. At one point I can feel my face doing that thing that Mary's face does when she's trying not to cry, but I manage to pull myself together before going on stage for Act 2. The next night, Bernadette and Patty refuse to be in the same room as me, and Bernadette's husband, who I actually like quite a bit, does our pre-show ritual with everyone in the room but me. Did I mention that Bernadette is in her early sixties, as is Patty? So, I've moved on, but I sure don't feel all that welcome anymore. I'm still a little stunned by the whole thing. I tried to explain that I didn't mean to be rude or hurtful, that I actually like Joe and Barry, but no luck. Anyways, that's not the only thing that has gone on, especially with Patty and Bernadette, but it's the biggest and most upsetting. Maybe I'm crazy, I'll accept that maybe I went over a line, but I also feel that the reaction to what I was saying and the refusal to accept any explanation or apology is a tad of on overreaction, you know?

    Phew. That was a long paragraph, hope you managed to stick through it with me.

    In other news. Yay to the union in South Africa that is refusing to unload guns, ammo and grenade launchers bound from China to Zimbabwe and the hands of Mr. Mugabe!

    Boo to Avent, whose bottles I've been using for Frannie because I thought they were safe, but turn out to be the worst culprits for leeching BPA into baby formula. Stupid (and I call myself stupid affectionately and respectfully, so please, don't get all offended. Just Drop it, okay!) me for thinking that because they were expensive that meant they were safe. I guess they're going to be sorry now that their bottles have been banned by the Canadian government. I suppose I should switch to glass, but I can't help but think the damage has already been done in the last 10 months of drinking from the bottles.

    Hurrah for giving up on potty training and accepting the fact that Mary'll be in diapers when she's 13 years old.

    Tuesday, April 15, 2008

    Golden Showers

    I'm livid. Absolutely seeing red angry. Mary had to go to bed early because I could barely stand to look at her, I'm so angry with her. I have been trying a new tact to get her potty trained. I bought a seat that goes on the actual toilet, I bought a bunch of really pretty little stickers, I put up a chart beside the toilet. I've been gabbing non stop about the wonderful stickers she will get if she does something - ANYTHING, on the potty. Tonight while I was bathing Frances Mary sat on the potty for about 15 minutes. Of course nothing happened, and she announced she was all done. I asked her if she was sure, she said yes, and I let her go while I got Fran out of the tub. Mary was naked at this point as she was next for the bath. Not ten minutes, TEN MINUTES, after she got out of the tub, she pissed about a gallon all over the hallway floor. I honest to Christ don't know what to do with her. I know, I know, everyone says it'll happen when it happens. I KNOW. But it isn't happening. She's over three years old. She has no interest what so ever in using the toilet no matter what I do. I yelled at her tonight, I called her a bad girl, I feel like a terrible mother but I am literally at the end of my rope. At this rate Frances will be potty trained before Mary is. Is there something wrong with my child? Is there something wrong with me? She can't go to preschool without being potty trained. I can't trust her to go even 30 minutes without shitting herself, let alone 2 hours twice a week.

    On a positive note, the string is gone. It passed naturally Saturday evening.

    The play is finished too, thank God. It amazes me that women in their 60's can act so bloody immature. Yes, there's a story behind that statement, and I'll share it later on, suffice it to say, I've managed to make an enemy or two in this wee town of Milestone. Yay for me.

    To end happily - here are some pictures of Frannie Lou. In the first she is enjoying my birthday cake, can you spot her two teeth? In the second she is enjoying our NEW WINDOWS! Yay!


    Saturday, April 12, 2008

    Oh Momentous Day

    It's my birthday! Whee.

    Mary ate string. It is half out, half in. I've seen the effects of eating string on a cat first hand. I am concerned.

    Only two performances left to go!

    I intend to drink a little more than necessary after the performance tonight.

    Must go eat toast now.

    Friday, April 04, 2008

    1 down, 7 to go

    Last night was our first performance that really counted. The first evening of dinner theatre. It went SO well! I was amazed, especially after that terrible performance in North Battleford. I had fun, something which was definitely missing in N.B. The audience was amazing, they laughed and were clearly enjoying themselves and the play. It makes things so much easier when you have a good audience to feed from. Oh! And the food! Good God, it was incredible. They bbq'd roast beef for the main course, the whole town smelled heavenly. The salads were fantastic, and the desserts were amazing. The whole town contributes to the meal, every house in the phone book gets a call and is asked to make either a salad or dessert for one night. I have been conscripted to make a salad called "Of Rice and Men." It looks absolutely disgusting, but people seem to like it.

    I have some hope on the Wesley front too! A friend of mine says she saw him over on her side of town Wednesday night. She called him and he responded by giving her a dirty look, meowing, and disappearing into a bush. If it was him then it means, well, it means he is alive and may be coming home sometime. I'm trying not to be too hopeful, I don't want to be disappointed, but my spirits were certainly lifted. So long as he stays away from dogs, cars, trains, and the open prairie where coyote's and foxes and great big owls hunt, he should survive, right??

    Wednesday, April 02, 2008

    Ninja in Pink

    Still no sign of Wesley, even on top of the hot water tank. While I was at rehearsal last night Ian got a call from someone who saw the signs that I posted all over town and thought they had him. They brought the cat by, but alas, it was not our Mr. Wyndham-Price. Everyone seems very positive about him returning one day, but I guess I'm a pessimist at heart, cause I just can't imagine him surviving even one night out there.

    Other than the missing cat things are going surprisingly well. While I was away Frances started to crawl on all fours, as opposed to the "dying man's crawl" that she had been doing up to that point. She still drags herself across the floor from time to time, but she's finally discovered the coordination to do the real thing. She's gotten awfully cute too, I know I was only gone for a few days, but she's much easier to take (and like) since I got back. I don't know if it's just because I missed her, or if she hit some major likeability milestone while I was away.

    Mary's doing very well too. Today she helped me clean up the house (well, main floor of the house) and vacuum. She does miss Wesley quite a bit, and every once in a while she will get very solemn and announce "Wesley run away. Not here." It makes me sad.

    But this picture always seems to cheer me up. I call it "Ninja in Pink Against a Blue Wall."






    This is the expression on Frances's face all day long lately. Much better than the screaming face, eh?

    Tuesday, April 01, 2008

    Home Now

    Hello everyone!

    Well, the drama festival is over and done with, and thank GOD for that. It went rather poorly, in case you were wondering. The hotel was AWFUL and filthy, there were men jackhammering all day just outside our dressing room, the group that performed the night before rewired the entire light board, and the performance was terrible.

    My trip to Edmonton went well though. I got to see many people that I miss and love and I got to see several babies. I did miss the girls something fierce, but I was able to speak to Mary on the phone every day.

    I got home to sadness though. Ian didn't shut the door on Sunday and one of the cats ran away and hasn't been seen since. I'm trying to stay positive, but I know what happens to house cats who have never been outside when they do get out. I have my doubts that he survived the first night, what with wild animals, dogs, trains, and cars. I'm pretty devastated, and I'm trying very hard not to blame Ian. It's not his fault. But I can't help but think that I can't even be gone for 5 days without one of my pets dying or disappearing. It's disheartening, you know? Anyways, last night I ran off some pictures and lost signs and put them up on all the bulletin boards in town. I haven't got a lot of hope, but I had to do something. I managed to hold it together till bed time, and while I was brushing my teeth I just lost it and started bawling, I'm awfully attached to my cats.

    Tuesday, March 18, 2008

    The Play

    It went fantastically! I can't believe how fun it was, and even though there was a couple of missed lines, it went better than ever! Why on earth haven't I done this before?

    I can't wait for the next performance.

    Thursday, March 13, 2008

    Ears

    Gosh, I can't believe I didn't mention this earlier.

    Mary went to the Audiologist on Friday, and guess what? Her eardrums are both ruptured! I felt like a grade A mother when the tester showed me the results. How could I not know? Don't you think that having an ear drum rupture would hurt something fierce? How could I have missed it? I've gotten over most of my Bad Mother Guilt, I'm mostly glad that we know now. It likely happened quite a while ago as she also has mild to moderate conductive hearing loss. From what I gather, that means that her ear nerves work well, the message just isn't getting to them due to the buggered ear drums. It is most likely the cause of her language problems too - she just doesn't hear us properly. So, we are now waiting to her from the Ear Nose Throat doctor so we can get started on fixing the problem. Tubes for the near constant ear infections that I had no idea about, skin grafts to fix the holes in the ear drums, who knows? Hopefully we will get a rush on the appointment with the ENT, there's only 3 in the city and they are all very busy, but the family doctor has asked that Mary be seen sooner rather than later because of her language issues. In the mean time we will continue going to the speech pathologist and working on her pronunciation that way, though I'm not sure how much it'll help. I mean, if she can't hear us properly we can repeat the proper way to say a word till we're blue in the face and she still won't get it, right?

    Wednesday, March 12, 2008

    DRAMA!!

    So, I'm in this play, right? It's the local dinner theater, and we're performing in a festival/competition too. Our first performance in front of an audience is in 6 days. SIX DAYS. And. AND. There is a person, in the play, who still, STILLLL does not know her lines. Hardly at all. At rehearsal today, she actually could not remember her characters name. She introduced herself (in CHARACTER) with another characters name. I could puke. I could just puke.

    That is all.

    (oh, and it's not me. I know all my lines.)

    Tuesday, March 04, 2008

    Mostly Normal

    Gosh, what a busy week it's been. We traded in the Taurus for a far more fuel efficient (but nowhere near as nice) vehicle. A KIA something-or-other. It makes it much easier for Ian to get to and from work, we aren't spending over fifty bucks on gas every couple of days. I've driven it a couple of times and it's okay, I suppose, though it does feel awfully low and rattly on the highway.

    Thursday past we went in to the city for a fun day full of specialist appointments for the kids. Mary saw the Speech pathologist first, and it went quite well. She had fun, the SLP girl was very nice (and from Milestone too, no less). She agreed that Mary will need follow up appointments, even though she knows a great deal of words and is able to make all the sounds that she ought to at this age, she's just not consistent with the pronunciation. After Mary was all done we grabbed a quick lunch and headed off to the pediatric outpatient department for Frances' appointment with a physical therapist. I don't remember if I've mentioned this earlier (I probably have) but Frances just won't sit. She rolls, she stands with support, she gets up on her hands and knees and is very close to crawling, but she doesn't sit. I am of the opinion that she just doesn't want too, but the pediatrician was a little concerned, so off to the physical therapist we went. Frances was amazingly cheery for a girl who missed her nap and doesn't like strangers. The physical therapist LOVED her and said that while Frances doesn't need to come back, I could bring her back if I really wanted. I gather she's not used to happy babies in her fun little room, apparently preemies are a whole different breed of baby when it comes to social interaction. Anyways, the general consensus was that Frances is just fine, she just doesn't like to sit, thus she doesn't get to exercise the muscles necessary to sit well. The therapist also thought that Frances was a little slow realizing that she was falling and by time she figured it out, she was already flat out.

    Oh! And I saw the Dr. about my blood tests yesterday. I'm not diabetic. I'm just fine. Except for the fact that my cholesterol levels are very high for my age. Huh? Is that the residue from living in the city and eating all sorts of take out and crap? Cause I'll have you know that I have been trying very hard to eat healthier since we moved here. It's not difficult what with the lack of McDonalds in a 50 Kilometre radius. So, I'm not really sure where to go from here. The Dr. said healthy eating and exercise. Exercise, which is far easier said than done when one has two wee people and it's minus fricken thirty degrees outside. Not to mention the fact that I despise exercise with a white hot passion. I guess I'll have to figure something out though, maybe find a decent exercise DVD at the library? I don't really know.

    This week Mary is off to see the SLP again on Thursday and she's getting her hearing checked on Friday. We have lots of rehearsals for the stupid play as our first performance in front of an audience is on the 18th (ACK!). This week is the final week for skating as well, which makes it a very busy week. Tomorrow is the dress rehearsal for "Carnival," which is a sort of party/show that the skating club puts on. It's going to be a long night at the rink followed by a long night on stage rehearsing. Friday is the actual Carnival, and it doesn't start till 7:30 - which is Mary's bed time. Should be interesting. Saturday is games at the rink followed by a supper for which I need to cook an angel food cake. I was going to do it from scratch but the recipe calls for 12 egg whites, and what the hell am I supposed to do with 12 egg yolks anyways?? So I got a boxed mix, I'm ashamed to admit. The weekend culminates with a cabaret for all the grown up folks Saturday night. Mary and Frances are spending the night with my Dad in Regina so Ian and I can imbibe and celebrate being adults without worrying about having to get up bright and early in the morning. Of course I have rehearsal and cast photographs Sunday morning anyways. Sigh.

    Wednesday, February 20, 2008

    Alphabet Song

    Me: Mary, why don't you sing the Alphabet Song?

    Mary (musically): A, B, A, B, A, C, U, Something (she actually said "something"), A, (mumbles), U, V, Mary, Frances, Twinkle, Twinkle, Prubble, Monster, P, R, Alphabet, Whale, 2, 3, 1, A, B, ZED!

    Me: ...

    Mary got a harmonica as a party favor from her friends birthday party. We have become a musical house. She stole an empty plastic container, a wooden spoon and a rattle and along with the harmonica, she puts on shows for me. She's a multitalented girl, her shows include all her musical instruments as well as singing and dancing....and she always bows and says "thank you, thank you" when the show is over.

    Of course between tantrums and just general whining it seems I rarely get to see that side of her...

    I'm off to the doctor tomorrow for an interesting appointment. I have all but convinced myself (thank you internets!) that I am diabetic, now I just need the doctor to confirm the sad facts. Mary will be spending the day with the local babysitter lady, which should be interesting for both her and me. Frances will come with me to the doctor and mall, It will be nice for me to spend some time alone with the younger child for once.

    Monday, February 11, 2008

    Why She's Not In A Snowbank

    How on earth can I stay angry?





    Sunday, February 10, 2008

    Ouch

    Three is kicking my ass. I hate three. I would like two back now please. How can a child change so much in a month? Was she always like this, or has something changed overnight? She's crabby, contrary, bossy, and occasionally downright mean. I ask her if she wants something and without fail she says no, until I put it away or stop asking or just say fine. Then she wants it. She needs it. She shrieks for it. No matter what I suggest, no matter what I do, it's wrong. I am often told to "Go away!" I still see glimpses of my sweet girl, giving me cuddles, playing with Frances, begging me for kisses....but it's happening less and less often. Please, tell me it gets better. Please tell me my only hope isn't to wring her neck and run away to Guatemala. Please?

    PLEASE??

    Friday, February 08, 2008

    Meh

    Yes, I have been neglecting this blog. In fact, I would be surprised if anyone actually reads it anymore. I don't know why, but lately I just can't be bothered. Everything in my life is pretty much same-old same-old, you know? Let's see. Since my last update I have... rehearsed for the play, taken Mary skating, fed children, cooked meals, baked bread, listened to the radio, changed diapers, given baths, done laundry. How exciting is that? We've had some seriously crummy weather, and it looks like we will be getting more real soon. I think I made it to the city once or twice. Ian had a wisdom tooth pulled. Ian works far too much and is rarely home these days. We are getting rid of most of the channels we get on TV which cuts our bill more than in half. We are trying to find a car that is better on gas for Ian to commute to work in that doesn't require us to give anything more than the Taurus, we can't afford to pay for a car.

    Mary still isn't potty trained. I'm still waiting to hear from the Speech and Language people - at this rate Mary'll be 12 before we see someone. Mary is mostly delightful and fun to have around. She's such an incredibly loving and imaginative child, it really amazes me sometimes that I had a hand in getting her to a point where she is able to express her personality so well. Last night she had a 2 hour tantrum (not so delightful and fun) before bed that had me weeping with murderous rage mixed with sickening guilt.

    Frances is getting bigger and cuter all the time. She's cheerful and sweet, and because I've been dragging her to the rink and to many of the rehearsals she is getting better with strangers. She still isn't terribly fond of old men though, which is a pity because there are lots of them in this town and they all adore her. She still doesn't sleep through the night. She is more and more mobile now - she doesn't crawl yet but she rolls around the house like a champ.

    The cats are good. The outdoor cats that I feed survived the -52 degree weather.

    I've been sick for about a month, I'm almost constantly nauseous which isn't much fun. No, I am not pregnant again, thank Christ. The news has had me in a state of almost constant outrage, what with babies freezing to death in their diapers and t-shirts, a young Canadian child soldier being tried for the murder of an American soldier in Afghanistan and the Canadian government doing it's best to ignore the whole thing, people fighting endangered designation for Polar Bears because it will prevent American trophy hunters from spending their money in the Canadian north, and once again hearing how I am poisoning my children because I give them formula rather than breast milk. The play is going well, we are working on the second act now which I am finding much easier to commit to memory for some reason. I am giddy with anticipation for the end of March when we perform at the competition in North Battleford....Though I am more excited about my trip to Edmonton afterwards than anything else.

    Tuesday, January 22, 2008

    Huh?

    What? Huh? Are you telling me it's actually been 2 weeks since I posted here? Huh. Go figure.

    I've been busy! It's kind of amazing, really, but I have been really busy, and actually getting out of the house, sometimes even without children! The play is really keeping me hopping, and I love it. I've met some very cool people (yes, there is such a thing as cool people, even in rural Saskatchewan) through the dinner theatre, and I really enjoy socializing with them as well as working on the play. Just this Saturday we had a drama workshop which was fantastic. Carrie from Free My Muse Theatre in Yorkton came out and spent the whole day with us. It was long, and by time I got home I was exhausted, but it was really fun. We worked on our production a little bit, but much of what we did was vocalization and improv. Carrie was fabulous, and at the end of the day she made me a little weepy. It also brought those of us who were able to make it a lot closer together.

    Mary is still skating, and doing amazingly well! It's like she decided that with a new year comes new skills (did she level up? It's entirely possible) and she skates like a champ now. The rink is another place to get out and socialize for me, and for Mary too. We often stay a little while after her lesson so she can run around like a maniac with the other kids, and I can drink some tea and chat with my friends (I have friends!).

    Back to the theatre group...we rehearse three times a week, and it's really nice to get out. I've brought Mary and Frances to a couple of our Sunday rehearsals when Ian is working, and everyone is very supportive and helpful with the girls. It doesn't help much that Frances hates people, of course, but we manage. Speaking of Frances, I just can't get over how very different she is from Mary. At this age Mary loved everyone, and was more than happy to abandon Ian and I just to socialize with a random stranger on the street. Frances however shrieks if anyone strange even looks at her, and unfortunately her opinion of strange includes my poor father and occasionally Ian. I suppose it has a lot to do with our lives when they were young. We started taking Mary to Boston Pizza every Thursday night when she was 4 weeks old, so she got used to being passed around from person to person at a young age. Frances is a real Mummy's girl though, and she isn't really happy unless I'm holding her, or at least within sight of her.

    The weather here has been brutal. Living a block away from the bald prairie does not make life easy. The other day we had a wind chill warning and that wind just whips up our street. It was minus 45 at one point. Brrr.

    Anyways, that's it for an update...I'm keeping busy, making friends and getting happier. I still miss Edmonton, but it's not on my mind as much lately. It helps that I know when my next trip to visit will be and I have something to look forward too. For those of you who read this and have responded to my post about my visit, I'll get back to you, I promise, I'm just having some email issues right now.

    Bye!

    Wednesday, January 09, 2008

    Bandwagon Jumping

    I hate all the hooplah around New Years and I especially hate new years resolutions. This year, however, I decided that there was no time like now to make a decision about my life. So my resolution for 2008 is to stop being a consumer. I can't stop all together, but I can give it a good try. Really, I decided it for totally selfish reasons - if we stop spending all our money on absolute crap then we can save it for things that are really important to us. Then I saw "The Story of Stuff," and I realized that there was more to this non-consumer thing than I had realized at first. I was absolutely outraged and poor Ian has had to listen to me ranting about "planned obsolescence" and "perceived obsolescence" on a near constant basis for the last couple of days (when I heard that Warner Brothers will no longer release DVD's, only Blue Ray....well....It's fair to say I was frothing at the mouth about it). So today, I put this up on my fridge -




    It's a start, right?

    Then last night we watched a documentary on CBC called "WalMart Nation," and I was absolutely sickened. Oh yeah, I've always known that WalMart was bad news, but I ignored it. I shop at that store all the time....How can I not....Formula for Frances is TEN dollars cheaper at "The Mart" than anywhere else. Ditto for diapers, and cat food, and kitty litter. No one can compete price wise. I pondered my dilemma all night and at about 3:30 (after Mary woke us up and before Frances woke us up) I came to a conclusion. If I don't buy that plush hot pink hippo at Walmart that sings and wiggles it's ears when you push it's foot, well, maybe I can afford to pay a little more for formula. If I don't go to Walmart and drop $300 on God only knows what crap, I can afford a bit more for diapers and cat food. We were actually planning on buying Ian's glasses (God, he's getting old the poor thing) at Walmart, but we have changed our minds. We are going to do our best to boycot that awful place.

    On to other topics. Do you know how fun it is to have a three year old with (as the doctor put it) severely infected tonsils and a very bad ear infection? Can you guess how much more fun it is when you have a 7 month old baby with diarrhea. This is my life right now, although the diarrhea seems to be abating (thank Christ!). Poor Mary is absolutely miserable and in pain, and poor Ian is freaking out. His tonsils nearly killed him when he was about 24, and he wants to rip Mary's out tomorrow to avoid her going through the same. We also have a referral to a Speech and Language Pathologist for Mary. She's really not speaking a lot of English, and enough people have commented on it (including the Doctor) that I decided that it's probably a good idea. My brother had terrible problems with language when he was her age, mostly due to his tongue tie (which Mary had too) and severe recurrent infections in his ears. We've never noticed ear infections with Mary before this, but the Doctor did say there was a bit of scarring in her ears so it's likely that this isn't her first. In happier news, we finally have an actual Family Doctor. Yay! I really like her, she's fantastic with Mary, and while she isn't taking new patients my Step-Mother called her and demanded she see Mary a while ago, and now we are all in.

    We started serious practice on our play this week, and eep! They want to go "script free" on Sunday, and I am not ready! It's like the lines go in one ear and out the other...my brain is a sieve. The practices are every Monday and Wednesday night, as well as Sunday afternoons...hopefully working with the others will help things stick in my brain. Oh! And we have a date for our show in North Battleford - It will be on March 27th. I'm thinking that on the Friday after the show I may run over to Edmonton to visit for the weekend - sans husband or children too! I really need to use that Spa gift certificate I got for my birthday last year, and this may be the perfect opportunity. March 27th, just over 2 months away. Pardon me, I need to go puke now...