Thursday, September 6

First Day of School: Nursery School

I have felt a little bit sorry for Sarah. She doesn't go to daycare. She doesn't have any children to play with when the twinnies are at school. So Dan and I decided to sign her up for nursery school. She was very excited.

Today was the "big day". Our littlest one started school (2.5 hours twice a week).

Before Sarah and I left for the nursery school, I took Sarah's photo...just like I did when her big sisters went to school last week. Sarah was thrilled with the attention.

At nursery school, Sarah met two little girls that she seemed to like. This pleases me beyond belief. I hope my little girl is happy.

Sunday, April 1

Take A Pill

The other day, Sarah came into the kitchen as I was taking some penicillin. Thinking that I was sneaking one of the children's Flintstones vitamin, she asked if she could have one of my pills.
I explain to the little cherub that I was taking medicine that would help to make me feel better.

Sarah asked, "Will it make you stop yelling?".

I replied, "No, darling, that is a little blue pill that I am so desperately in need of". I giggled, and then handed her a coveted Flintstones vitamin.

Saturday, March 31

Status Update

A busy month. Business trip to Halifax. A "summit", and various other-work related demands. March Break. The Experimental Farm. St. Patrick's Day Parade. The maple syrup farm. I've been in overdrive.

My New Year's Resolution was to teach the children about the world around them. Each month, we learn about other countries. So far, we've done Scotland, El Salvador, and China. Dan and I have not done a super job, but we've made an attempt.

Also, I have focused on teaching the children about farming. We have already started some cherry tomatoes, normal tomatoes, peppers, cucumber, strawberries, herbs, and pumpkins. I'm a little bit worried. I have lots growing and no where to plant these crops (I already have six flower gardens). I haven't even started the corn! I've decided to worry about that later...

The twinnies got their report cards the other day. I demanded an interview with the teacher, which surprised both Dan and the teacher. Turns out that most parents don't freak out when their children get straight As. Anyway, I went to the interview, and the teacher said that my children were at the top of the class. Brilliant in both language arts and math. Far beyond every other student with their general knowledge. And that they are bored. Perfect. I was just saying that I was running out of things to obsess about...

Oh. And I have one child who is eating weird things. Like the living room tables. And cords. And it's not the littlest child. Sigh.

Saturday, March 10


I'm loving the weather this "winter". Just today, I saw 17C in the forecast on the weather network.

In February, it was warm enough for the children to go "scootering".

In March, it was cold enough to build a snowman.

We'll probably be at the beach in April. Or we'll be moaning about a blizzard.

Thursday, February 9

Just Three More Years

My brother, Duncan, was a better parent than I was. Even though he had no children of his own, he knew exactly what I was doing wrong, and he always  had some advice (or judgement) to pass along.

Duncan once said to me, "Who is in charge, you or the three year old?!". He thought I was kidding when I said "The three year old". He started into his holier than thou, boring old rant. You know the one. It begins with "When I have children of my own...".

I nod my head, suppress my smile, and look like I give a damn about the Parenting for Dummies by Duncan lecture. I keep telling myself, "My day will come, my day will come".

And it did.


My brother had a baby girl of his own.

The baby is tiny, and beautiful, and healthy, and perfect. Duncan is in love.

And I'm happy.

Because in three more years, I am going to say to my little brother "Who is in charge, you or the three year old?!". And he will want to punch me, and I will laugh and laugh and laugh!

Tuesday, February 7

Picture Perfect (Yeah, Not So Much)

I wanted some photos of Sarah. Nice ones. With her smiling. Sarah didn't feel so inclined...

This was the best I could do:

Although I do love:

I've decided the fault lies with the subject and not with the photographer.

Monday, February 6

My Last Sleep In Day Was January 3...2005

Friday: I wake the children up at 6:30am so they can have breakfast, get dressed, and be ready to catch the bus at 7:30am. Like every school day, they refuse to get up and cry "It's dark outside! It's still night time!"

Saturday: Bethie wakes up at 6:15am. She immediately wakes Katie up, and the two of them start rearranging the furniture in their room until I come in and yell at them to BE QUIET!!! At which point, Sarah wakes up, too.

Sunday: All three children are up by 6:10am. I demand to have more sleep, so they tip toe downstairs and feed each other icing and sprinkles until I come down and yell at them. Then they act shocked that I am angry they ate junk for breakfast. They, apparently, had no idea that this was unacceptable.

Monday: By 6:45am, I am losing my mind because they still won't get out of bed. I explain to the little darlings that if they can get up early on the weekend, then they can get up on time on the weekdays. The twins respond by rolling over towards the wall.

The only solution that I can think of is to put them to bed by 6:30pm. It'll be dark outside. Dark = sleeping...right????

Thursday, February 2

And Then There Was February

I've been busy. January just flew by, and it looks like February will follow suit. Between work and home and the minor concussion that I received after bouncing my head off the cement stairs, the entire month is a bit of a blur.

I did, however, manage to start working on some projects that I am interested in. First, I want my children to realise that there is a big wide world out there beyond Ottawa's city limits. Each month, I decided to teach them about a new country.

I thought it would be fun to start with Scotland. I hung up a map of the world with an arrow pointing to Ottawa, and another one pointing to Scotland. Then I wrote some words relating to Scotland (like heather and haggis) and stuck those to my Word Wall. I even coloured the Scottish flag and stuck that on the wall. The grand finale was a "Scottish Dinner" to celebrate Robbie Burns Day.

Yeah, turns out I suck:

Dan cheered everyone up by producing grilled cheese:

This month, we're learning about El Salvador. They're going to love it!

I also started the first bit of our Victory Garden (the children are obsessed with WW2). Although most of our vegetables will be started indoors in March, we planted some herbs because we were too excited (ummm, actually Dan was not the least bit excited...he just humours us!).

I discovered this today!

And last, but most stressful, Dan and I have lost our minds and bought fish.

We named our fish Bella, Shrimp, Kitzy Fishy, and Chirp. They are all still alive, so I'm pleased. But I don't particularly like Bella because she harasses the other fish and I spend a lot of time trying to get Bella away from the others. Because I have control issues. Sigh.

Sunday, January 8

Into The Future...

I'm afraid of dying.

Ever since Melissa died, I think of dying every day. I'm terrified that I will be hit by a truck...and vanish. Vanish from my children's lives, from their memories, from their hearts.

I worry about their lives without me in it.

I worry about them being "haunted" by my memory. What snapshots of me will they remember? What will they hold close? What will slip through their fingers? What will they be left with?

I'm scared that they will face hard times, that they will be on their knees, and I won't be there to help them up. I won't be there to catch their tears.  I won't be there to cheer their successes. I won't be there to hold their babies. And they will resent me, or God, or their father.

I'm "haunted" by my grandmother. There is so much that I don't know about her. So much that I will never know about her. Her favourite song. Her favourite place. What she thought about various things that happened in her life. Things that I never thought to ask her...

I sit in my cozy kitchen as I write this. The afternoon sun is pouring in. Music is on in the background. The children are playing happily in the living room. Everything is...nice. All I can think is that too soon this moment will be "a long time ago".

One day, my daughters will read this blog, hoping to gain insight into their lives, and into my life. I hope that they find what they are looking for. I hope they find evidence that I adore each of them. That they are the best things that ever happened to me. And that every day is made wonderful simply because I am able to be in their lives. And if I get hit by a truck tomorrow, I hope that I have imprinted their hearts sufficiently that they just know that my love for them doesn't stop when my heart does. It's forever.

P.S. Just for reference, my favourite song is "Baby Blue" by George Strait.

Thursday, January 5

The Year of Nature

I live in suburban Hell.

All the houses look the same. White front doors, two cars in the driveway, and a tree on the small patch of yard out front. Each house has a 7' fence, cordoning off their own little plot of land. It's a relatively new development, so there are only a few gardens. When I stand on my porch with my back touching my front door, I can see 64 sets of windows that over look me. SIXTY-FOUR!

It drives me crazy that the other four people that I live with have no issue with this suburban Hell. The cookie-cutter approach to life works wonderfully for them. Just do what everyone else does. Don't call attention to yourself. Your value is measured by what others think of you. Keep your mouth shut and your head down.

I have had enough.

In 2012, I am going to help my children to be less suburban. I have decided to teach my children about Nature. I want them to learn that their food doesn't actually come from the grocery store. I want them to learn how plants grow. What they need to survive and thrive. I want them to learn about farming. I want them to see a cow being milked, a pig in a sty, and chickens. Not like at a petting zoo. It's important for me that my children are exposed to agriculture. I told myself that I will do anything in my power to assist my daughters in understanding the world around them. Having compassion for, and an interest in, wildlife. I felt happy, and thrilled a little at the prospect. Kinda nervous about finding a farm to visit, but eager about us examining Nature.

And the Bethie ask for a fish.

She wants a fish to love and watch and occasionally feed, but otherwise ignore. She wants a fish so I have one more soul to worry about, one more soul to pick up after, one more soul to feed. ain't cheap. Well, the fish are, but all the stuff you need to maintain the fish are really expensive. Dan said that I need to buy a minimum of a 10 gallon aquarium. I'm not at all sure how much a gallon is, much less ten of them, but I'm guessing it's gonna be bigger than a fish bowl.

So, I'm off to check out fish. Because, apparently, having a fish is my first step down the road to "Nature". Not quite how I imagined it...