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Showing posts from May, 2011

Me and Kinsey.

I am struggling with my role as an aunty right now.  I find it very hard to wear the mom and aunt hat at the same time.  I am so envious of Kyla that she was able to be an aunt to Willis for 3 years until Kinsey was born.  She was able to establish such an incredible rapport with my little guy and it is so clear when you see them together how much love there is.
I sure hope I can do that for Kinsey.
The problem is that whenever I'm with her, I'm also with Willis and Lucia so she's not getting 100% of my attention.  It was actually the BFF, Christy, who brought this issue to light when she was home last weekend.  She also wishes she could be a better aunt....(I hope it's fair of me to say that Chrr and you're not mad at me for bringing this up sans your permission).....and I'm glad she brought it up because it really made me think.  What can I do to be a better aunt?  What makes an aunt unforgettable?  How can I establish the relationship with Kinsey that Kyla …

Autumn's Grad

While Autumn parties the night away like any young, energetic grad would do, I bide my time trying to choose from the 400 images Kyla and I took on Friday of the beautiful graduate.
We traveled out to Blaine Lake to photograph this lovely young woman, her family and her boyfriend, who also happens to be my little, bratty cousin.  Bahahaha.  There was a plethora, that's right, I said plethora of photographic spots and we could've stayed there all day had Kyla and I not had to get back for a ball game.  Special thanks to my lovely Aunty Chris for coming out and helping mind the our two little minions who are a little to young to be assisting us.
This was one of the smoothest photo shoots I've ever done, mostly because Autumn radiates positive, joyful energy and was game for whatever America's Next Top Model-esque position that Kyla would throw her into.
So here are the best of the best in accordance to me.
Congratulations on your graduation, Autumn!














a little bit of this.

When Willis doesn't listen to me, I usually end up raising my voice and repeating myself. Until he listens.  Yesterday on one such occasion he wasn't listening and I turned it up a notch.  He immediately starts sobbing and says: "Mommy, you're breaking my heart"
Where did that come from????!!!!!
***
I'm branching out into grad photos today with my cousin, Devon's gf, Autumn.  I'm kinda nervous, not gonna lie, but luckily my sister will be working with me which makes it extra fun because she is all kinds of creative.  Stay tuned to see our work.
***
My husband can speak again!  Apparently the day he had his wires snipped was the best day of his life and his requested meal of spaghetti and sauce, accompanied by a beer was the best thing he ever tasted.  Now on to tackle his list of most wanted meals for the next week.
***
I'm done discussing matters of teacher negotiations.  I hate arguments and I hate reading negative comments because I'm much t…

On being a teacher.

I became a teacher initially because I wanted to pursue my love of a second language, le français, but I've continued my career because of the students. They amaze me every day.

What I love the most about my classroom are the different faces in it: I love how each student brings something different to the group and I enjoy learning about their passions and their lives. Maybe it's because I teach in the immersion program and we have the same students from Grade 9-12, getting to know them better than you would in a random class.
And because I feel I get to know them well, they in turn become a part of my life.
My students influence me. They inspire me. They push me (sometimes good and sometimes bad). Even when I have a more difficult relationship with a student, nothing thrills me more than to see that student succeed in the end.
They make me want to be a better teacher and I have to be because it's never guaranteed that I teach in my areas.
Which I don'…

May long

15 years ago May Long was THE weekend. Although I never participated in the craziness of camping/stashing booze/freezing in the snow/staying up all night because I usually had ball that weekend, I can appreciate the stories the girls share from their much cooler escapades.
This weekend I had a chance to reunite with the girls and share some time catching up, swapping stories, mommy tips and letting our boys and girl bond as well.  Every moment I have with my friends is treasured even when it's in a mess of toys, drool, screaming, unsharing and tears.


Our May Long weekends may have transitioned from cheap coolers and rule breaking to discussions on thyroids, labour and potty training, but they are still great in my books and this May Long will go down as one of my favourites.

one year

While working last night on Lucia's first birthday video, I came across a video I had done showing Will's party. It was a tame party, at that point not many of my friends had kids which is odd to see because now there are kids everywhere!
And wow, is there ever a huge difference in Will and Lucia. No two kids are alike for sure!


Untitled from Dee on Vimeo.

So much.

I have been feeling so overwhelmed lately.  Maybe it's the onslaught of summer and all the things that must be done to a yard/garden/house to prepare it.  I don't know. I just feel so....soo.....débordée.  That's a good word, french of course.
So I'm sitting here on my one "free" night and by "free" I mean no ball, no husband, no kids (b/c they're sleeping), and of course I'm finding my head spinning. What should I do first? All these projects, so little free time. I tried getting some of my outdoor work done, but by the time I got Will to bed it was already getting darker, so that was out of the question.  The house was already clean, so I didn't have to do that.  That leaves my computer projects that I never get to work on anymore.  I haven't made a video in ages, I'm so behind.  On top of that, I have Lucia's first birthday coming up that I want to prepare something special for.  Ya, ya, she's only turning one, she won…

To chew or not to chew.

My husband recently (while I was in Scotland) had jaw surgery.  Not the best timing, but we knew he had to jump on the chance when he was given a date or he'd be waiting for ages.  This was a major surgery, breaking his jaw, inserting plates, moving it forward.....and the kicker having his mouth wired shut for 2 weeks.  He has to purée, strain and then eat everything through a syringe.  Definitely not appetizing.
You think he would enjoy it though, this was the guy after all who would argue with our resident dietician/nutritionist/whatever (my sister), saying that there should a pill developped containing all essential vitamins, nutrients, etc. etc. to simplify/quicken the eating process.
I'm pretty sure, given the chance, he'd be willing to chew just about anything right now.  That idea is sure out the window.
I never thought one could miss chewing and enjoying the different textures of food. All Dan can think about right now is what he'll eat.....so I tried to come …

Bl-acation

As you haven't already guessed, I'm taking a little blog vacation.  I think all the mommy diaries and Scotland entries have worn out my creative or expressive energy and every time I sit down to think of something to say, I come with nonsense. And that's what my brother's blog is for.
So until I can come up with something smart, witty, interesting, funny, or even remotely entertaining to say, I'll just lay low and enjoy summer's homecoming.  We're playing ball this weekend in our first tournament with the new team and in between that I'm working away at the garden, getting it ready for next weekend's planting.  Lots to do and lots of time to think. So until I have something better to say, I won't say anything at all, cause that's what my mommy taught me.
Cheers.

Scotland, the last day.

This morning we, and by 'we' I mean Kyla and Robbie, woke up feeling the effects of too much ale. Cozy English Pub + Rubber arms + Off terrain vehicle and hangovers, not such a good idea.
Luckily we were staying at the most charming B&B in the geographical centre of Britain, and the lovely owner offered us a hearty English breakfast and anything you could think of for a speedy recovery. If ever you find yourself in Haltwhistle, Northumbria, England, do stay at Chare Close and definitely do attempt to try all the ale at the Black Bull. The food was also phenomenal there.
We were picked up by Gary from Hadrian Wall adventures at 9:30 and were ready for a full day of fun.
I learned so much today. Gary was a very well informed guide, passionate about history and hard to keep up to.
Today I walked where Romans walked, sat on their benches and touched their money. We visited the active archaeologic site of Vindolanda and saw writing tablets from the first century. As old as Jes…

Scotland day 5: not Scotland any longer

This morning was started off perfectly with a walk down the Royal Mile to Hollyrood Palace (Queen's residence here). Bright blue skies, medieval buildings and tons of history surrounding me- doesn't get much better.
We had a train to catch at 11, which we took to Alnmouth, Northumbria, England to see the Alnwick Castle which has some crazy history dating back to the 13th Century. It is a huge castle by my standards with a beautiful botanical garden which rivals Buschart Garden in Victoria.
The biggest draw to me was that Harry Potter first two films were filmed there. Hogwarts, anybody? Imagine the first broomstick training scene? Yup, we learned to fly brooms there- along with a bunch of 8 year olds, but whatever.
I think this possibly was the highlight of my trip.
We then hopped a train to Haltwhistle which is the Carnduff of England. Scary small town with a fabulous pub, the Black Bull, where we are currently enjoying many pints of cask ale.....







Scotland Day 4: On our way back to Edinburgh and the stops in between.

Today was an exciting day for me because we got to tour a castle.  Eilean Donan, a MacCrae stronghold perched beautifully on a little island in a valley.  Apparently it used to be for defending from Vikings attacks and since has been rebuilt and restored   It also was used in many movies, including Made of Honor with Patrick Dempsey and that big red head from Grey's.  The castle was beautiful and we also got to enjoy a piece of Millionaire's Shortbread which just happens to be a dessert my mom and grandma make at Christmas.  Shortbread covered in caramel topped with chocolate. Yum!
We also spent the afternoon in Fort Augustus which is just at the tip of Loch Ness.  It is a picturesque little loch town where we, of course, enjoyed a couple of pints (Rob isn't right until he's had a pint. or two)  We spent most of our time watching them use the Caledonian Canal (engineering feat) but mostly we had beer.
We learned a lot driving through the countryside back to Edinburgh a…

Scotland day 3: we hike and we hike.

Today was a great, refreshing, exhausting and just generally fun day.  We started it off with a hike up to Neist Point which is the western most point of the island.  The day turned out beautiful and we definitely worked off our big Scottish breakfast that we had earlier.  My calves paid the price but it was definitely worth it for the views.
The drive through the country side was particularly pretty and I was able to draw a lot of similarities between life here and how it is in rural Saskatchewan.  Nothing but hard working people, living off the land.  There a quite a few differences, however, with the sheep having the right of way on the roads here.  Yup, it's illegal to stress out or rush a sheep if he happens to be on the road in front of you.  Interesting.  We also spoke a lot about the history in the region with Bonnie Prince Charles and Flora McDonald, also there was a lot of discussion about the Jacobite rising.  Very interesting stuff, but mostly because I just finished t…

Scotland Day 2: We travel to Isle of Skye

Ah, the Isle of Skye.  Even the name sounds lovely, doesn't it? 

I really enjoyed our trip today. We left Edinburgh around 9am and ended up at our Bed and Breakfast at 6:30 with many lovely stops along the way.
We have a fantastic tour guide with our Rabbies tour who has the gift of storytelling and is an encyclopedia of historic, geographic and geological facts. I think I've learned more today than I did in all my years at University. I am definitely a hands on learner.
The stories ranged in subjects from Mary, Queen of Scots to Rob Roy, to whiskey drinking to William Wallace to Robert Burns. They were so interesting and have definitely sparked a learning bug on my part.

We stop in glens, at lochs, at castles and random places to sample whiskey, making the bus ride go by quite quickly.

We ended our journey in the capitol of The Isle of Skye, Portree: which is a small harbour town with excellent seafood and a cozy feel.

Tomorrow we shall explore the island by foot and bus, bu…

{this moment}

{this moment} – A Friday ritual. A single photo capturing a moment from the week. A simple, special, extraordinary moment. A moment I want to pause, savor and remember.

a perfect meal with my siblings.  Sometimes we don't need to speak to just enjoy each other.  I want to always remember this meal.  Great food, great beer, Black Magic Woman playing in the background which makes me think of my dad.  Just a perfect day surrounded by people wanting to experience the world from so many different cultures and worlds.  Perfect.

Scotland : Day one. The day of no sleep

There was once a time when I spent day in and day out with my brother and sister.  They were my world and my closets friends or enemies, depending on the day.  Like all, we had to grow up and go our separate ways, but we still remained close.  The last time we spent this much time together was 10 years ago when we attended World Youth Day in Toronto (which was a fantastic time).  Now here we are again, the brat pack, travelling and revelling in each other's company.
We've arrived safely in Scotland after a loooong, sleepless flight from Calgary to Glasgow.  In Glasgow we swiftly determined our boundaries (which is necessary because we know VERY well how to piss each other off) and that we should only drink beer out of our left arms because of various arm injuries to each of us. The train ride from Glasgow was pretty with random castles and sporatic groupings of sheep.  It is so lush and green here!
Surprisingly after going 30 some hours without sleep, I'm doing very well. …

Méli, mélo

Not gonna lie, it was awesome doing Mommy Diaries, but it's nice to have my blog back :)  Therefore I have tons to say and no real point so I'll just ramble. Because I can.
***
We leave tomorrow for Scotland!!!!! The schedule is finalized, tickets are booked and I really could care less if it rains or shines because I'm GOING TO SCOTLAND!!!!!!!!  I'm pumped to spend 7 days straight with my bro and sis, which hasn't happened in probably 15 years.  Hopefully we won't make each other crazy.  Although, we all know our weaknesses so as long as they don't mess with me if I need quiet, it'll be good.  No wait, it'll be epic!  What am I most looking forward to?  I want to say uninterrupted sleep but I'm really going to miss my kids, so I would say instead the visit to Alnwick Castle which is the castle they used as Hogwarts in Harry Potter. 
I am really hoping that each night will provide me with WIFI and some down time so that I can upload my pictures…

Mommy diaries: the end.

Well that went by quickly!
It has been so much fun reading your responses and comments to the questions posed in the Mommy Diaries and I have to say thank you to everyone who submitted.  I know that some people found this easy while others had to step far out of their comfort zones for me.  So a million thank yous and high fives to you.
This activity was good for me.  It pushed me to look for the good in every person and to find a way to express what I thought about them without sounding like I'm just putting random words together. That was the hard part.  The easy part was sharing these beautiful mommies with you.  Everyone deserves to be appreciated, applauded and loved and that was my goal in doing this.  It's hard being a parent and we often put so much pressure on ourselves without even realizing it and for me I think it's become important that I draw on the experiences and strengths of these great people around me when I feel like I'm not doing a good job.
The mo…

Mommy diaries: Candace

Meet Candace:  I didn't feel right not involving her.  She's one of my closest friends and I think she's going to be a fantastic Mom.  Candace is currently awaiting the arrival of her first baby, come the end of July.  I love being witness to someone being transformed into a mother and really, don't we become one the minute we learn that we are with child?  So it only makes sense that we celebrate a mom-to-be as well. 
Candace is the most loyal person I know, she puts family and friends first and would do anything for you.  She goes out of her way to make sure you know that she cares and without a doubt will be a loving and devoted mother.  I can't wait to see her baby.  It's something else when a friend goes into labour and its absolutely my favourite moment in life when we get that text and we all wait to hear the news.  I can't wait to experience this with Candace & Mike, they will be wonderful parents.
I admire Candace's ability to love my childr…

Mommy diaries: Tara

Meet Tara: she is a friend that I met at work and have really enjoyed getting to know.  She is fun loving, positive and a very uplifting person.  I really enjoy being around her and am sad but happy for her that she'll be moving back to MJ in the fall to be closer to fam.  Totally understand that. But will still miss her and her beautiful daughter. 
I admire her ability to be happy all the time!  I'm sure she'll say I'm full of it, but really, she always seems so cheerful and smiley.
I enjoy our coffee dates with Tara and Elaina. I always leave smiling.
I am thankful for the chance I had to get to know her.  Although she's moving and I likely won't see her often, I'll still stalk her on FB and feel like I am close to her.
I think other moms would enjoy the positive vibes she sends out.  She makes you feel good every time you see her and it's evident that she loves being a mom because she is doing such a wonderful job.
This is Tara:

Mommy diaries: Elaina

Meet Elaina:  we both started teaching at Cross at the same time and have been friends ever since.  Elaina is hardworking, motivated with usually a whole wack of activities on her plate.  Nothing slows her down and she takes projects on with open arms.   
Speaking of projects, when I first sent out the Mommy Diary email to my friends, she was 3 days overdue and obviously not ready to share her journey.  But willing she was and sure enough she was at it almost immediately, carefully documenting what she wanted to say about her new role in life.  
I love seeing Elaina as a mom.  Not only is she disciplined in her readings and learnings on different techniques and products but she glows with this newfound love.  And let me tell you, she's naturally going to be a wonderful mother as I'm sure she'll approach this endeavor with as much finesse and passion as she does every other project in life.
I admire Elaina's willingness to give.  She's is constantly reaching out to oth…

Mommy diaries: Alynne

Meet Alynne: a most treasured friend who has been in my life for almost 20 years.  Alynne is like a sister to me and I love everything about her.  We've been by each other side through some interesting life experiences and I'm glad to have such a great friend to share my moments with.  Maybe she feels like a sister because she lived with Dan, Kyla and I before there were babies and responsibilities, maybe she feels like a sister because my family adores her and treats her like she is one of us.  Or maybe it's just because of the love that she constantly gives.  Alynne is so warm and caring and has open arms for anybody.  She is a fantastic and devoted mom, who unabashedly loves her boy with everything she is.
I admire her ability to stay true to herself and put her family first.  She's made a lot of decisions that have truly shown that her family is the most important thing in her life.
I enjoy her sense of humour.  She always has me laughing and has a way of reminding m…