Sunday, December 9, 2012

December Pictures!

Eli's contribute to the Christmas tree decorating ~ a cookie!

Yep, Eli ~ passed out in the Costco grocery cart!

Ruby's new 'classic' pose. ...Where does she get this stuff?

My $8 SCORE! A microphone for her 3rd birthday! We've been singing along to youtube videos!

Plan 'B' Snowman Cupcakes

Behind the scenes at the new grocery store's loading bay!

See! I'm NOT exaggerating when I say I might suffocate in the chest high mountain of clean laundry! Folding party anyone?

Dang fresh air at the park! Wipes 'em right out!

This is one of my FAVOURITE photos! ... She pulled out this gold toule from one of the Christmas totes. I have used it in years past for a tree skirt but I have a new one... she couldn't resist being a bride! ... And what bride doesn't have a pet lizard named, "Albert?"

Gluten Free Homemade Chocolates with Nana!

Getting ready for her party! ... She wouldn't take off the socks Grammie had just knit her!

In Mummy's Cowgirl boots!

Princess Birthday Moment!

My heart is melting!

Puttin' away totes... er playing 'choo choo train' to keep the kids amused momentarily!

One gorgeous gal! Thank goodness Daddy has shot guns!

More of Mummy's cowgirl boots!

This one is an oldie from the fall... we were making wine and she thought it looked like a witches brew in a cauldron! Not sure if this is a repost but I don't care it's CUTE!

I have a couple of video's I keep meaning to post... we shall see if I get there!

Happy Birthdays!!!! ... No presents necessary, 'cuz I scrubbed a rhinoceros

It's been a while I think but life has been going FULL throttle the last three weeks! Nick and I are exhausted! Slight reprieve this week and then onto Christmas celebrations and clean up. Ugg ~ where IS that live in nanny/housekeeper when you need her???

Had a visit from my mother in law! She made chocolates with Ruby and they coloured and 'scissored.' She played cars with Elias and watched Ruby's swim lesson! But I was sad that we sent her home and she not only had her car break down but then got sick! SORRY Nana!

Also had a visit from Nick's Dad, Step Mum and Sister! They brought pressie's and danced with the kiddies. Granny made awesome 'pirate' hats out of gold toule. Ruby has enjoyed her play dough set emmensely! Thank you!

Nick went in for the big snippy snippy the last week of November. And was a TOTAL baby about it for days afterward!!! I of course in classic Kate style had ZERO sympathy. :)   ... Yes that's right, zero, zilch, nada, niet. NOTHING, I pushed two water melons out a garden hose honey, so I'm not caring about your frank and beans one bit. Moving on...

As soon as he came home from the doctor's office he got sick with strep throat and Elias had an ear infection, so I took him to the doctor's office. Doctor confirmed the ears were red and then chatted with me about my options. He said, and I quote, "I'm not for or against treatment with antibiotics. Statistically speaking treatment WITH antibiotics lessens discomfort by about 12 hours, but that is all."

Ok, thinking in my head about the week Eli was born and Ruby was so fevered she couldn't sit up, her eyes were spinning in opposite directions (kid you not), she was speaking in tongues and vomiting bile. SCARIEST 'exorcist' shit I've ever encountered! NO exaggeration.

Elias was NOTHING like what Ruby had been through, so I opted not to use antibiotics and just wait it out. He had a small perforation in the ear drum which had allowed it to drain so he wasn't in a lot of discomfort. Thursday he was pretty much himself, Friday he napped with me for 2 hours. Then went down for another two hour nap...when he woke up he had green pus coming out of his ear!!! YUCK. PANIC! Emergency room! Second trip and he's not even a year and a half old. :S

Amoxicillin and fluids. Saturday night, he was still screeching and the sheer amount of drainage was frightening. Plus his nose wouldn't stop bleeding. Emergency Room Trip #3... Luckily we saw the same doc. Ear was 50% drained and the nose was bleeding because the skin had started to deteriortate inside his nose. Ya, treatment ~ try shoving vaseline up a 15 month old's nose 3 times a day!

But everybody eventually mended. House remained a dive bomb, and I was beginning to STRESS until I made arrangements for Ru to go to a friend's house after preschool. She was so CUTE! At first she didn't want to go. And when I pressed her as to why, she said, "I don't know.... do they have a bathroom?"  SPLIT a gut! (Internally of course) I try very hard not to laugh at her most sincere insecurities! UBER cute though!

Was able to accomplish quite a bit with her out from under foot and was excited to see my folks who were coming up to celebrate!

Ruby's birthday was the 7th. I took the kids on a 'field trip' with our local toddler group, we went and toured the new grocery store. We looked at all the different fruit and the fish monger took out a crab and lobster to look at. Then we went in the back and Ruby was SUPER excited to see the cardboard get squished in the compactor! We were given a Gluten Free Ginger cookie and then we dashed over to the local golf course to see the gingerbread house display! 'Twas FUN! Ruby did a 'scavenger hunt' and had to find the 5 pictured items in the sea of gingerbread houses. She had a blast!

Quick trip to Costco for party food ~ Elias fell asleep in the buggy, I'll post a pic. Home to get started on the cake! ...My mother in law had borrowed from her sister a stand up teddy bear cake. I researched decorating ideas on the net and found a great snowman.... I rolled out the fondant for a black top hat. Carefully read all the instructions on using the pan, made cake, then made MORE cake because I didn't have enough to fill the pan. Let it cool, and took off the mold, only to have the cake inside the 'head' part not be cooked and so the whole bloody thing fell apart! ... And then I fell apart. ... My parents arrived a bit late to a DISASTER! I had used every pot, pan, spatula in the kitchen. I'd exploded a bag of icing sugar all down the fridge, I dropped just about everything I touched all because I was stressed and tired.

Finances are tight, with 4 birthdays and Christmas this month. The truck needing fixed and the bill being OVER the quote by a whole trucking lot! Sheesh!

Plan 'B' .. I used the snowman cupcake tin and then iced the damned things at like 11 pm. They turned out great! The party was AWESOME! She had SO much fun! Thank you to everyone who came!

Nick and I went out for dinner that night as his birthday is the 10th. He took me out for Vietnamese 'Pho' which is basically a soup, spicy if you like. He ordered the 'hot and sour' which I liked better than mine although mine was equally tasty in a simple broth with rice noodles, thinly sliced beef, scallions, sprouts and some fresh basil and lime. Then he bought me an ice cream from McDonald's and we went on a quick wine tasting at the new beer and wine store along the dyke. We ended up getting home before Ruby went to bed because we were both just SO exhausted ~ but it was nice to get out all the same!

Sunday Mum and Dad went home. But they had brought up a desk for me to paint on ~ which I am THRILLED about! Ruby missed them as soon as they left :(

A 'new' concept I'm supporting right now is the 'no presents necessary' theme.... The last few birthday parties Ruby's been invited to have stated 'no presents necessary, just come celebrate with us!' on the invitation. I made sure a wrote the same on Ruby's invitations. We still got a few presents for which I am thankful for but in all honesty it truly wasn't necessary. I feel like we live in this world of extreme excess and unnecessarily so. Why add to it? Ruby doesn't need anything and most of her friends are much the same ~ arent' we lucky and blessed to be able to say that? What better way to teach our children about the value of friendship, good company and the awesomeness of 'wholesome' parties, than to just dress up nice, play with the mountains of toys we already have, eat copious amounts of cake and give out a goodie bag too? In essence, "It is better to give; than to receive."  I like this new 'theme.' I'm going to stick with it!

And the rhinoceros you ask? Well I was scrubbing the bathtub like I do every week and that includes scrubbing the bath toys.. nothing more rank than scuzzy bath toys in the tub that your children chew on.... We have very limited amounts of bath toys because I dislike them. Well I dislike stepping on them, tidying them, scrubbing them ~ you get the drift. But whatever makes it there I clean and alas there was the rhinoceros. I couldn't help but catch the oddness of the moment as I'm scrubbing this toy rhino's arse I thought to myself, "I wonder how many people in this world can actually say they've scrubbed a rhinoceros' arse?" Anybody?.... LOL! Let me know! I'd LOVE to hear that story!

Sunday, December 2, 2012

Do I really demand too much?

For the third time this year an acquaintance has gently reminded me that I demand too much of myself. I find this odd. ... Do I? Do I really? .... I am shrugging my shoulders, as I know no other way to be.

Life hands you lemons, you make lemonade. Those in my most inner circle know that I'll gripe, and whine, and snivel, cry, sob and dry heave in existential wonder before I'll make the lemonade... but I still just make a sour face and do it.

Would I LOVE to have a handful of children? Yes. Do I LIKE having to give up my car and hop on a bike 4 times a week? No. Do I LIKE having a husband gone 50% of the time? Yes er No, er sometimes? LOL! He makes such a mess!

But in all honesty I just don't know how to not do what I'm doing. I try valiantly to get the kids out of the house for an activity EVERY morning, Monday through Friday. We're only out from 9-11:30, so we can make it home for lunch and Eli's nap. But I find that if I don't take the kids out, the house is just that much more of a disaster and the kiddies are BORED. I'm BORED and they're underfoot and things go sideways...

So yes that means I'm up before 6 am, showered and flipping eggs before 7am. Kids dressed and out the door for 8:40. Sometimes I can get the beds made and/or the dishes in the dishwasher before we leave. Most often NOT. But I don't stress about it anymore. The mess will be there when I get home and no one ever drops by spontaneously...mostly cause I don't think I know that many people in town yet!

I make lunch, tidy up the kitchen, put Eli to bed and try and play with Ruby for a half hour before I get started on some other household project/chore.

Yes, I have a schedule on which chore gets done each day;

Monday ~ Gymnastics in the am, swimming in the pm, empty garbages and recycle, vacuum downstairs
Tuesday ~ Preshool for Ru, Diaper Gym for Eli, Walk the dog, Garbage to curb, clean bathrooms
Wednesday~ Library in the am, swimming in the pm, sort laundry, scoop cat box, vacuum upstairs
Thursday ~ Preschool for Ru, walk dog, pump through laundry and play with Eli at home
Friday ~ Put laundry away, vacuum whichever room is disastrous
Saturday ~ Family time! Scoop cat box, play with dog, finish whichever chore I never started....
Sunday ~ Is a tricky day, either we're on it and so we can relax, OR we're scrambling to make up lost time!

Other than that I attempt to wet dust, clean window sills (it rains here a lot so mould can grow if one is not careful) and wipe out the fridge once a month.

Heck if I'm able to scrub out the fridge, dust the fan blades, and vacuum behind the couches twice a year I think I'm doing pretty good! No?

I don't spend too much time watching tv, there is never anything good on anyway. Plus I LOATHE commercials. I am addicted to facebook, which I'm making a conscious effort to only check twice a day... it's not going so well. I'd LOVE to read more, paint more and sing more. Even take an exersize class or learn to play an instrument.

I don't know, I just feel like I can't go to sleep at night knowing I wasted a day. Don't miss understand, when we don't make it to the library, I don't sweat it, I just pull out a craft for Ruby to do.

Or on days like today when both my guys are on antibiotics and Ruby woke up on the wrong side of the bed, I danced to Christmas music in my jammies until well after noon. Mainly because no one could stand not touching me for whatever reason. ... So there I was, hair all floppy from sleep, breakfast, snack, snot, pus, blood, apple juice and Lord knows what else crusted on my nightgown, but we danced because my kids needed me to dance.

Eventually I popped in a 'Rudolph' DVD and was able to sneak away for the 10 minutes I needed in a shower. After that I fed them lunch and when Nick came home I tried to put Elias down to sleep so I could start cleaning up the breakfast dishes at quarter to two .... but my baby wiped his nose on my shoulder, coughed in my face, smiled a sleepy grin and nuzzled his head into my neck, while his chubby hands clutched onto my arm. ... So I drew the blinds and crawled into bed with him for a nap! It was heaven!

When I woke an hour later, I sent Nick down for a nap. Ruby and I played with play dough she was given for her birthday. It's just before 9 pm and the house is finally in some sort of order, I'm still in snot covered clothes but my kids know they are #1. And that's the only way I know how to live.

As a question of general interest; does anyone else (after a day like today) realize just before bed that they haven't actually been out of doors? In that moment I panic and get a sick feeling in my stomach, so I send the dog out to pee and stand on the back deck in the darkness breathing two gulps of fresh air before I end the day. The peace of mind it brings is neurotic I know, but I never said I was anything but weird.


Sunday, November 25, 2012

Family time.... Decisions, Decorating and Dollars

October was a rough month! House insurance, truck insurance, truck needing repairs, vet bills.... and on and on it went! GACK!

So Nick has been pulling overtime this November like nobody's business, just trying to make sure we don't fall behind. I've been on a strict budget, buying nothing but the essentials... Mrs. Freakin' Frugle! Uggh!

And of course Christmas is coming, Ruby's Birthday, Nick's Birthday, and the new year which means paying for more extra curricular activities... which means more $$$$$$$.

After tallying it all up I'm paying $480 per month for preschool, gymnastics and swim lessons. SHEESH! I make sure to do as many 'free' things as possible like the library or Strongstart. But HOLY COW! These kids are expensive!

I've always wanted three kids, I still want three kids. I have NO desire to be pregnant again any time soon. In fact I am enjoying rediscovering some freedom and my thinning waist. So Nick made the "Executive Decision' to go in for the big 'V.' aka 'Snippy, snippy.'

I thought it was a bit premature myself but then I tallied up the monthly expenses and have realized that the quality of life I'd like for my children would be diminished if we keep adding to our brood. It does not however curb the bittersweet sadness that I'm feeling as tomorrow's procedure approaches. I am sad that I didn't slow down and enjoy the kids more,as babies.

With Ruby I was too afraid to enjoy her because I wanted to make sure everything I did was, 'right.' And with Elias we had so much additional emotional trauma happening, the uncertainties made it impossible.

And so I am sad. In the thick of it one feels as if it will go on forever, bleary eyed and just surviving through each day. And then just as suddenly it's all behind you. Not 'over' as the children are simply in another chapter of growing, but the baby/toddler days flew by far too quickly. The snuggly, delicate, 'can't be put down '~ 'don't WANT to put you down my angel'~ days I wish I could relive. But alas I cannot, so I am learning to enjoy each and every minute. To let the laundry sit another hour while I read books, or colour or paint, or play with trains and cars. I learn not to care that I make the beds only to have people follow me from each room wrestling and flattening my freshly fluffed pillows.

I am encouraging the wearing of the Christmas Tree skirt as an 'invisibility cloak,' and trying not to sound exasperated when my Ruby girl asks for me to bring down the Party Lite Christmas Church one more time so she can peak at the candle inside... Life is GOOD! It is rolling along too quickly and costing more money than we thought we'd ever spend! Nick jokes that I spend it faster than he makes it ~ which isn't far from the truth these days!

So we find fun 'free' things to do. Like exploring the Lazo Marsh and feeding the wild birds by hand. Or standing out in the cool weather watching the Christmas Parade.

Can't wait for her 3rd birthday. She picked out the invitations and handed some out to friends at preschool. We went to the dollar store and found some great crafts and gift bag stuffings for the party. Nana Brenda brought up a 'Bear' cake pan, which sits up just like a panda bear. I'm thinking I'll ice it like a 'Care Bear.' Only a few more weeks until her school 'concert.' And then Santa! Slowly getting the house decorated, the ages of the children now only add to this magical time of year. Here are some photos!
Outside the Library

Reading the library books at home ~ clothing is optional there.

Gettin' ready to play outside!

UBER cuteness at Ruby's Diner!

Playing with her favourite cherry tree.

Wonderful plastic top hat!

Bollywood Princess!

Cousins sleepover!

My late night solo dinner while Nick was away


Frosty is mesmerizing!


Lazo Marsh

Look closely at Ruby's hand

First Courtenay Christmas Parade!

First Candy Cane! ... This was the best pic I could get