Friday, August 29, 2008

Genetics, The Zoo & Courage

I thought I would take a moment to tell a story about something that happened to me when I was 12 years old.

OK, picture if you will, two 12 year old best friends at ballet class. Not just any ballet class - but the class at which the the ballet instructor announces that the shorter, muscular, just-getting-womanly-curves dancer was the ONLY person in the entire city to pass her Intermediate level-4 exam. But what also makes this a special class is that one (over-bearing) mother is measuring every dancer for the costumes they will wear in the upcoming stage show. The above mentioned mother is extremely distraught that her tall, lanky, flat-chested daughter did not pass.

OK, now skip to the scene where this over-bearing mother is driving the two 12 year old girls home.

Mother: Laura, you must be so happy you passed your exam, I am sure your parents will be proud.

Laura: Yep. I worked really hard, I am very happy. Kathy, I am sure you came close to passing. You will pass next year for sure!

Mother: Oh, I have no doubt in that, Kathy has a long dance and preforming arts career ahead of her. You can see it in her eyes and with with her wonderful dancers' body, she will pass next year for sure. Kathy has the body of a dancer.


Mother: That reminds me Laura, you may have to pay more for the costumes you need for the show. Based on your measurements, which are the largest of the whole group, I will need to buy extra fabric for your costumes. So sad that you inherited your father's big lower body and your mother's large chest. What can you do????? Genetics, I guess. You cannot do much when you take after your parents like that - I am surprised you have made it this far with your dance.


Anger building in the athletic, but curvy 12 year old. Resentment building in the 12 year old who during the measurement taking session had to listen to this cow-of-a woman make over-exaggerated shocked noises after loudly announcing her measurements - and comparing each measurement to her daughter's measurements. Suddenly a feeling of courage began to swell in this girl. She was proud of her body and of her accomplishments.

Laura: You are very right Mrs. A. Look at you. You look just just like your mom and dad.

Mother: Oh, Laura my dear, my parents live in England, you have never met them.

Laura: Yes, I have...last the Toronto the hippo pen! You look just like them!

S-C-R-E-E-E-E-E-E-C-H. Car coming to a halt 2 blocks from Laura's home.

Mother: Get. Out.

And that was the last time Mrs. A ever drove me home from ballet class!

I thought this was a good story to tell today.

I have struggled with my weight most of my teen and adult life. I have always been active, but during certain times in my life the scales have moved from a healthy weight to an unhealthy, even unsafe weight.

Back in 1999 I joined weight watchers and lost almost 80 pounds. I kept most of it off till just before I got pregnant in 2003. I was injured and could not continue my running, gym workouts or sports for an extended time. The pounds started to creep on. Then I became pregnant. I had a healthy weight gain, but never got a chance to take off the baby weight before baby number two came around. Then baby three surprised us. And the weight kept creeping on.

I am REALLY struggling right now.

I approached my doctor a few months ago and we started to investigate options to help me. I knew I needed medical help to get back in control.

We found a intensive core program offered at our local hospital. To participate, first your doctor has to apply for an application on your behalf, then you fill out a huge questionnaire and go for a few tests. Then you attend an application interview. Here, based on all the information collected, the medical doctor suggests possible programs.

Based on the information provided I was accepted into the (very costly) intensive, hard-core program. It is a year long commitment.

Yesterday, after lots of soul-searching, tears and out bursts of frustration, I called to confirm my spot in the group that starts in September.

I have the courage that 12 year old Laura had to mouth back to her friend's rude mother.

I have the courage and commitment that a mother of three wonderful children can muster up in order to not risk missing seeing her kids grow up.

I have the courage and desire that a wife has when she wants to grow old with the man of her dreams, who loves and supports her unconditionally.

I have the courage and want to succeed for myself - to better myself - to rediscover myself.

I have what it takes...and I will do it!

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Wordless Wednesday: Water Baby

Water Baby Madigan at 18 months old
Future Olympian?!?!?!?
Join WW here!

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

A Second Mortgage

I am thinking ahead - for when my two boys are in their teens - and planning on taking out a second mortgage.

I truly believe that my boys will eat me out of house - we will need a mortgage to pay our food bill when the boys reach 14 and 15.

Why do I know this????

The boys came home from camp complaining I did not pack them enough food.

Let's see - they are 3 and 4 years old and weigh in at 41 and 44 pounds respectively and here is a list of what was packed for their two snacks and lunch:

1 whole jam sandwich
1 large banana
1 corn on the cob (they each asked for it!)
1 pre-packaged container of apple sauce
1 pre-packaged container of fruit cocktail
10 mini pretzels mixed with a handful of fishie crackers and 10 mini chocolate chips
4 whole grain crackers and 4 pieces of cheddar cheese and a few raisins

Their lunch bags weighed almost as much as they did!

Now, granted, neither ate their fruit cocktail cups, that seems like a lot of food for two little guys.

If this is the amount of food they are eating now - GOD HELP US when they become teenagers!!!

Heck, last week when renewing our Costco membership I discovered that in a year we spend the equivalent to one-third of my part time salary at that wonderful big-box store. Needless to say we upgraded our basic membership this year!

Well, better get working on that application for a second mortgage! Fingers crossed we get approved before the next growth spurt hits!

Friday, August 22, 2008

Quality Time with the Grandkids

My in-laws are visiting. Since they live across the country, we only see them once or twice a year.

For the last 3 days Grandpa has not been feeling well and has spent a few days sick with a stomach bug.

On Thursday he was finally feeling well again and was eager to spend time with his grandkids.

Not sure how eager he is to spend time with the kids today after a few comments from my peanut gallery yesterday.

While playing by the pool Anderson commented, "Gandpa! You have boobies, just like Mommy!"

While eating a lovely spaghetti dinner that Grandpa made DJ comments, " Grandpa, you are a terrible cook. This is really yukky!"

Insert nervous, embarrassed daughter-in-law laugh here...

Monday, August 18, 2008

Whirl Wind Wedding Weekend

Well, we have returned home from our whirl-wind wedding weekend! It was GREAT! We left Anderson and Madigan at my parent's house and headed to Burlington Ontario for David's cousin's wedding. DJ was asked to be the ring bearer.

Here is a photo summary of a few of the gazillion highlights!

We arrived in Burlington after a long 6 hour drive. DJ was a bit tired and a little unsure of everything. Personally, I left the rehearsal a bit nervous on how DJ would do at the wedding. But, luckily, all my worry was put to rest at the rehearsal dinner. DJ fell in love with the flower girl and quickly became best buds with the groomsmen. Here are two shots of the rehearsal.

We spent Friday sight seeing in Toronto. We walked around the CN Tower and visited the CBC Museum. CBC is the Canadian Broadcast Corporation. The three generations, of Davids even got to accept Olympic medals!

The highlight of our day in Toronto was dinner at the Medieval Times. It was AMAZING! DJ loves horses and we thought this may excite him...that is an understatement! We all enjoyed the show. There were handsome knights, amazing horses, sword fights and jousting. The food was amazing and the show spectacular!

Saturday was the big day! I think I was more stressed and worried about DJ being a ring bearer than I was when I was getting married! Plus, I think the actual day was more hectic than my own wedding day was!!! DJ had to be ready for 1030am for photos. When he had his tux on, well, my heart almost burst. He looked so handsome! Then we returned to the hotel for lunch and a quick swim and then headed to the church. We got caught in a traffic jam...and were almost late for the wedding!

DJ did AMAZING. He did everything that was asked of him, and then some!

After he stood and presented the rings to be blessed, he wondered from his front seat pew and came to us (um, remember we got there late? Well, we were way in the corner - so, DJ crawled on the pews around people to get to us!) When I asked him what was wrong, he loudly explained, "He took the rings. I am all done being a ring bearer!" We shooed him back to his seat. Where he amused everyone around him by playing with the silk pillow like a yo yo. The bride's mother later commented that she was bawling her eyes out over the vows, and then glanced over to see DJ playing and she started to giggle...and could not stop! So, DJ did a great job and even added some comic relief!

DJ fell in love with Teagan. After the ceremony the two of them sat in the back row of the Hummer Limo (that sat 21!) and were too cute for words! During the out door photos the kids played int he gardens and had a blast!

I was so focused on my handsome little guy I kept forgetting there was a wedding taking place around us! I think I took 12 photos of DJ for every photo I took of the lovely bride! I took over 350 photos throughout the weekend! Cannot wait to scrapbook this event!

At the reception, DJ was in top form. He was constantly entertaining everyone. During the first dance they had a bubble machine...yep, you guessed it - DJ started chasing and clapping at all the bubbles...everyone was laughing and clapping! I have so many funny stories to share!

All night long DJ danced and had a great time. At 12:45am we carried him screaming and crying out of the reception...he wanted to stay and dance more...he was asleep before David drove out of the parking lot!

It was a fabulous weekend! One I will remember for a long, long time, and I hope that DJ will remember it.

Congratulations to Tara and Chris...may you have a life long romance together. Best wishes!

BTW - my Google Reader is now into triple digits...and I so desperately want to read all the wonderful posts my wonderful blogging friends have had over the last few days...but sadly, I have no time. My in-laws are in town for another week and I am working extended hours this week since I have live-in sitters! I promise to read as many as I can and leave as many comments as I can...I have missed you all!

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Wordless Wednesday - Potty Training

Madigan is 18 months old.

Madigan is the third child. She has 2 older brothers as role models.

Wonder if she is ready to be potty trained?

Yep! She is peeing against a tree...and each time she does it she demands I change her diaper...and nine times out of ten it is warm from just going pee!!!!

A hug that melts icicles

DJ came walking into the front room. He looked a bit defeated. His body language told me right away something was wrong. He and his brother had been playing very nicely for quite some time. Running around, giggling and laughing. But now he was distressed.

Come here Buddy. What's wrong?



Yep. Everything.

Do you need a hug and quick cuddle?

Yep. (scrambles onto my lap and snuggles in)

So, what's causing you grief, Lovebug?

Well, I need some couragement Mommy. My whole life is full of icicles.


Ya...Anderson and I are playing icicle course and I keep running into icicles. It is soooooo hard.

Icicles, hmmmm, icicles... Oh! Obstacles....Can I help you out?

Well, I think a good hug is all I need to beat all the icicles in my life Mommy. All done. Thanks! Bye!

As DJ jumps out of my bear hug. I am happy that he has rebounded and is now his energetic-self. Suddenly, I am hit with a wave sadness. Right now, a mother's hug can melt any icicle he may face - and that is a good thing... I can only hope my hugs and "couragement" can help him through all and any icicles he may face through his life.

Monday, August 11, 2008

Our Much Loved Noisy -Puter

A few weekends ago the kids got to sleep over at Nana and Pepe's house.

Upon our return to pick them up I gave each child a big hug and exclaimed, " I missed you sooooo much!" I asked Anderson if he missed me, he brushed me off and put up with my hugs and kisses. He was not too happy that it was time to go home.

When we arrived back home, Anderson ran into the computer room and inquired, "Does our -puter still make noise?" I replied yes. He then asked, very politely, "Can I pleeeeeeease play Nick Jr. com?" I said yes, and opened the appropriate web page.

As I was leaving the room, I hear, " Oh Noisy -Puter, I missed you soooo much; I missed you as much as Mommy missed me!"

I later found out that the sound card on my parent's is broken, and my computer-junkie-3-year-old could not get his -puter fix!

Thursday, August 7, 2008

Thursday Threesome

I have a threesome of things that I would like to brag about. My Thursday Threesome is about three things I am super proud of right now!

1) Diana at Forgetfulone was so kind as to recently present me with a wonderful award. Diane writes a wonderful blog full of insight, honesty and informative tidbits and inspiring scrapbook accomplishments that have all made me a regular reader and bloggy-friend.

I am so happy that my posts make her smile, and not run away screaming or even worse, shake her head in disbelief! In all seriousness, I am so honoured that she would present me with this award. Thank you Diana!

2) Nissa at Nissa's Niceties presented me with a great award and a wonderful compliment when describing the Lunatic Fringe. I blushed when I read it!

The rules that come with this award are:

1. You have to pick 5 blogs that you consider deserving of this award for their creativity, design, interesting material, and also contribute to the blogging community, no matter what language.
2. Each award has to have the name of the author and a link to his/her blog to be visited by everyone.
3. Each award winner has to show the award and put the name and link to the blog that presented her/him with the award.
4. The award winner and one who has given the prize have to show the link “Arte y pico” blog so everyone will know the origin of this award.
5. Show these rules.

So I'm passing this award on to:

Little Elvis' mom at Pregnantly Plump. I totally love her blog: she and I seem to have so much in common, starting with our equally adorable 18 month olds! Her wonderful photo and video montages ROCK! Go check her out!

Kathryn at Seeking Sanity is one amazing mom and blogger. Her honesty, sense of being and wit draw you into every post. It is like you are watching and enjoying life, right there beside her, her hubby and her three gorgeous little boys!

Amanda at Shamelessly Sassy is, well, sassy, brilliant, witty, edgy and simply wonderful!

Mishelle at Secret Agent Mama is a brilliant photographer - I would so buy a coffee book of her photos! She ROCKS!

Alf at I Shot a Man in Reno knocks my socks off - every post is funny and true - where else can you get grass-growing update photos and awesome lessons of life in the great west? Alf keeps me in stitches and while we could have played on the same soccer pitch in high school, I am sure she was too cool to hang out with the likes of me!

3) Finally, I am proud of a project I just finished. We are attending wedding of the century in 9 days and for weeks I agonized over what to give as a gift. I am sure I will get tons of blogging material leading up to, during and after this wedding, so I will not yet go into any details - but lets just say that with DJ being a ring bearer and the wedding being out of town, this wedding is costing us a fortune!

Normally I would not share a photo of upcoming wedding gift, but I am certain the bride is too busy and occupied to visit the Fringe. Plus, I want to show-off my handy-work!

I found a neat picture frame on sale (actually bought two so I could have one since the sale price was AMAZING! ) I inquired about the colour scheme and flowers for the wedding...then in a few days completed a small personalized cross-stitch for the bride and groom. I inserted it into the cool multi-picture frame and VOILA - home-made wedding gift!

I am quite proud of how it looks and I am proud that I only spent a third of what I figured a proper wedding gift would cost - I figure the time, effort and love that was placed in every stitch should increase the value!

Here is the finished product that I am very proud of...what do you think? Is it an acceptable wedding gift to give my hubby's cousin?

So, what three things are you proud of today? Take inventory - it makes you feel pretty good to brag a bit! Go for it!

Wednesday, August 6, 2008

Wordless Wednesday - Anderson's First Real Haircut!

Mommy has always trimmed Anderson's hair herself.
Anderson looking cute!

The BEFORE photo

Giggle giggle!

Trim trim!


The AFTER photo!

Handsome and cool!

Watch out girls!!!

Monday, August 4, 2008

August 4, 2002

Six years ago today...
I got all prettied-up...
drove myself and my bridesmaids to Srathmere...
got dressed with the help of my mother and my best friend...

had my father walk me down the aisle...

to proclaim my love and respect for a very special man...

who decided to not leave me at the alter...

and we were pronounced man and wife...
we celebrated our union with our family and friends...

had a bit of fun...

toasted our happiness and love...

and walked off together.

I love David more and more each day. My respect for him as a person, a friend, a lover, a confident, a father and a provider of all things knows no boundaries. David has taught me how to be more accepting, caring and how to value myself for the person I am today, the person I was yesterday and for the person I will be. He has helped me realize my limitations while encouraging me to push my boundaries and be all that I can be. His love is unconditional and non judgemental. His love is never-ending and so greatly appreciated and reciprocated.

My relationship with David is strong and simply wonderful and perfect in every way. I will love him forever and forever - and then some.

I thank him for taking me as his wife - with my faults and all. I thank him for making me a mother to three special and precious children. I thank him for teaching me what love really is and what happiness involves. I thank him for always being there for me and the kids. I thank him for saying yes when I asked him out! I thank him for making my world perfect. I thank him for being.

I love David and I will love him forever!

Sunday, August 3, 2008

52560 Hours Ago...

David was sporting new socks my parents gave to that he would not get cold feet!
My dress was hanging in the window of my hotel room.

Tomorrow would be the big day!