Wednesday, December 20, 2006

Christmas Survey

Daphne sent me this email so I thought I'd post my responses on my blog. Would love to see your surveys too!

1. Eggnog or Hot Chocolate? Hot Chocolate

2. Does Santa wrap presents or just set them under the tree? What kind of Santa Claus DOESN'T wrap presents - of course he wraps them!

3. Colored lights on tree/house or white? Colored lights on our tree. Just red lights on the outside.

4. Do you hang mistletoe? I have a fake one but I haven't hung it yet.

5. When do you put your decorations up? We put our outside lights up (I think) the first week of December. Our Christmas tree and other inside decorations went up last week (Dec 13th).

6. What is your favorite holiday dish? turkey and all the fixins

7. Favorite holiday memory as a child? Waking up early and then Mom and Dad telling us "A little while longer" OR "wait, we have to go put in the fire" etc. etc. I swear, just to keep us in total suspense. And then we had to read the Christmas story together (which is a great tradition I continue now) but as a kid it was just like "COMON ALREADY!" The suspense really made it fun to rip open those gifts when it was finally okay.

8. When and how did you learn the truth about Santa? I remember sneaking out one night with my sister to the hallway after we had gone to bed. And there were my parents putting the gifts under the tree in the living room - no Santa!

9. Do you open a gift on Christmas Eve? No, I've never opened gifts on Christmas Eve.

10. What kind of cookies does Santa get set out for him? As a kid we always put out a glass of milk and oreos. (later to find out my mom would drink the milk and dad would eat the cookies...lol)

11. Snow! Love it or hate it? Would LOVE it if it arrived on Christmas Eve and then was gone again on Boxing Day. That would be enough for me.

12. Can you ice skate? Um, used to....last time I went with Vicki and it was a disaster! I was like Bambi with the wobbly legs flailing out from under me...lol :)

13. Do you remember your favorite gift? Off the top of my head...I remember getting my own recorder (previously had to use the ones at school). Mom had it wrapped inside a cardboard paper towel tube. And I remember getting molded "girl" ice skates - they were white with pink liners and had velcro so I didn't have to tie them up. Oh, and my little ponies, turtles chocolates, sour cabbage patch kids, and a pink wallet my aunt Rowelle gave me from the World Wildlife Fund. I could go on and on forever - I got so many great gifts, still do!

14. What's the most important thing about the holidays to you? The general spirit of Christmas - it's like Christmas Day just FEELS great - seeing family and visiting friends and gift-giving, listening to Carols, eating yummy holiday cookies, the pretty Christmas tree - everything is wonderful!!

15. What is your favorite holiday dessert? Home-made cookies and squares and cakes and anything that's chocolate and sweet...lol

16. Favorite Holiday tradition? Love getting up on Christmas morning in the pj's, reading the Christmas story, opening gifts with my family, and then all having yummy breakfast together.

17. What tops your tree? An Angel...my tree is all angel decorations.

18. Which do you prefer--GIVING OR RECEIVING? Receiving is great but it's the giving that really makes you feel blessed in your heart of hearts.

19. What is your favorite Christmas Carol? It's called "Mommy and Santa Claus" (lyrics on THIS POST from last Christmas) and it's on one of the old records that belonged to my parents and of which I am now the proud owner...and "They stood in silent prayer" by Charlie Pride.

20. Candy Canes? Not a huge fan, I usually buy some for my "candy cane holder" and then have to throw them out at the end of the Christmas season.

Merry Christmas Everyone!!

Friday, December 15, 2006

Christmas Cookies

Found this awesome website:

http://www.christmas-cookies.com/

For any of you looking for recipes to make your Christmas cookies.

Thursday, December 14, 2006

On My Drive to Work

I heard this on the radio this morning:

http://torontosun.com/News/TorontoAndGTA/2006/12/14/2787953-sun.html

I think it's absolutely outrageous! I understand there are many other religions, creeds, and traditions that are celebrated here in Canada. I have no problem with someone honouring their own religious beliefs...but at the expense of having to sacrifice my own?

It's already politically incorrect to call it a "Christmas" tree and to say "Merry Christmas" - God Forbid! We try to please everyone by instead calling it the "Holiday Tree" or "Unity Tree" or whatever and by saying "Seasons Greetings"...bah humbug!

And I can't blame it on the non-christian people who live in this country - many of which I've said Merry Christmas to and have returned the same sentiment to me. Unfortunately, the people "in charge" (like the judge in this case) just like to make stupid decisions, rather than focusing on the priorities like that sex offender she probably just let back on the streets to assault our children.

Can you tell I'm feeling rather upset about this?

So much for living in a Christian Nation!

I appreciate your thoughts - even if you disagree with me.

UPDATE: 12/15/06 7:16am

On the radio again this morning:
Good news: The judge who made the ruling against the Christmas tree has been met with a great deal of opposition. Opposition from the premier, the governor general, AND leaders from the Jewish and Muslim communities. (See? Didn't I say that it wasn't the non-christians who had a problem?). They all agree that it's political correctness that should be banned and that if the judge wished to be fair then she should have included decorations from other religious holidays, not banished the christmas tree.

Wednesday, December 13, 2006

O Christmas Tree

If you read Christa's blog then you already know about how we went tree "hunting" on Sunday at Adam's Farm near Shelburne (Ontario). We had planned for it for a few weeks now and I was SO excited to be able to cut our own tree this year after spending the last 9 years simply buying one from the parking lot at Zellers. We always cut our own tree in Newfoundland. Now mind you, it was usually lop-sided and had to be tied onto the wall to keep from falling over...you remember those days? But at least it was REAL!




It was a gorgeous day and it was so fun to get a nice tractor-pulled hayride of sorts. And then there was the daunting task of searching through hundreds of trees for the perfect one. Couldn't be too tall - our ceiling is only 8 ft. And it couldn't be too big and bushy cause our living room is really quite small. And then there's trying to avoid the crooked, disheveled, two-topped, branches missing Charlie-Brown Christmas tree. It's practically impossible to find such a tree "au naturel"....but then we found one. It was the right height as long as we cut off the snaggly branches at the bottom and only was side was a smidge wonky (that's the side we're putting into the corner). Everything else was great! But then didn't we go and still try and find a better one...only to walk and walk, not see anything, and then come back to the original. I think I would have cried had someone else claimed it.




Jamie started the cutting - complaining every step of the way about his knees getting wet from kneeling in the snow and about having a dull saw and all that. He ended up cutting his hand and everything. And then I offered "Do you want me to do it?" to which he immediately replied a snappy "NO!" (I guess I should have been cheering instead saying "great job! You big sexy burly strong man you!" lol)




And then after the little episode with Kristen leaving Christa behind to cut down a tree without her (see Christa's blog...lol) and I swear it took him like 2 seconds to cut down his tree. I think Jamie was STILL working on ours after Kristen was gone through the woods, cut down his tree, and dragged it back to our location.




But both couples now had their trees and we headed back to our sleigh ride, paid, got our trees wrapped up, and enjoyed some yummy hot chocolate provided by the farm. Mmmm!! My gloves still have that awesome new Christmas tree smell on them. I love that!


We left our tree in the garage to melt the ice and snow until Monday. Then Jamie snapped his ankle at work so he couldn't bring it inside. Then I realized I had forgotten to water it (dummy me). But yesterday evening between Jamie hobbling around and me prego, we managed to drag it inside and set it up.


Today I get to decorate! (I even bought new ribbon) Yay!!

Tuesday, December 12, 2006

Sad but True

Jamie found out last night that a guy he used to play softball with committed suicide yesterday. Jamie's sister called to tell him. Thing is, Jamie and this guy weren't great friends or anything, teammates for a year, but it still really hits you hard when you think you kinda know someone, they seem so happy and friendly, like life is going fine....but you just never really know what's happening in the lives and minds of people (even your closest friends and family) behind closed doors.

Jamie's sister didn't really have many details. She did say they found him in his truck enclosed in the garage - we can sorta assume from that how it happened but I really have no idea for certain. He had two pictures with him: one of his little boy and another of his dog. Strange to me that the obvious two most important things in his life still weren't enough to make him want to hang onto this life. But yet he wanted them to know they were the last "things" he held onto in those final moments.

And at CHRISTMAS!! of all times of the year!! Perhaps that's a moot point to make - I'm sure it wouldn't be any easier for his family at any other time of the year.
FYI: I always thought that Christmas was one of the most popular times of the year for suicide but according to the Centre for Suicide Prevention, this is not true.

Upon hearing of suicide I always find myself searching for answers - why would someone do this? I just don't understand it. I just can't imagine getting to the point where I felt there was no other option. On the one hand, I'm so judgmental, I find the act selfish and cowardly. On the other hand, I'm so saddened by it and I don't want to be the person on the outside who's judging - I have no idea what this guy was going through, how deep his depression was, how hopeless he felt. In that way, I suppose my scrutiny is merely an act of ignorance. Ignorance is bliss in this particular case as I hope to never be faced with a situation in which I will find out first-hand how it feels to be this guy.

For this family, I ask you to pray - for peace, understanding, guidance, support, freedom from guilt. This truly has to be one of the most difficult things in life a family will ever have to face.

And if anyone out there is reading this and feel you need someone to talk to, feel you have no hope left, PLEASE know there is another way:
Contact http://www.suicideinfo.ca/
http://www.dcontario.org

Monday, December 11, 2006

Photo Shoot

Before Jen left, us girls decided we wanted to do a little photo shoot. Kristen was our photographer and we got quite a few nice shots (despite the fact that it was getting really dark outside) - I'm so happy with how they turned out. My scans aren't great but you get the idea...

These first two are my favs!


Sitting on the fence...

And then the fence broke...lmao! (I'm blaming it on the baby...he he)

Thursday, December 07, 2006

Nostalgic


















Let's just think back to the 70's in homes across our great country and remember these fabulously wonderful clunky living room adornments (most likely in style to match that floor model television): The Record playing/8-track listening STEREO!!

I always wanted the stereo my parents had and my dad finally brought it to me last week. My mom packed up their collection of records and 8- tracks. All country/western/bluegrass/gospel. And most importantly - the whole reason for my wanting this stereo - the Christmas albums!!! I would listen to these over and over again every Christmas - the stereo barely got used otherwise.

Unfortunately the 8-track player is on the blink and needs repair --- anyone out there know how or IF there's such a thing as an 8-track player repairman? I may have quite a challenge on my hands...lol :)

Wednesday, December 06, 2006

24 Weeks 5 Days


Here I am on Saturday night at Christa's house doing the 24week 5day pose to share with y'all. Baby and belly are really growing, eh? And that's my new haircut. It's pretty curly and poofy in the picture but it's a good cut - got a little bang and about 8 inches cut off the length AT LEAST - I swear it was SO long before I just couldn't take it anymore.

Tired

Ugh! What a bad day! I'm tired, hungry, cranky...like I'm the baby! (ironic). I don't want to see anyone, don't want to converse with anyone at work, just don't wanna be here at all. I feel like I can't talk half the time, I mix up my words, can't think straight, am a complete muddle-brain these days. I'm cold, I swear the nailbeds of my fingers are bluish-purply. I thought pregnancy was supposed to turn me into a firey furnace. Not happenin' - maybe my iron is low. I should check that out.

Anyways, enough of my grumblings.

My dad was here last week for 2 days. He drove here in his "big truck" to pick up furniture for my Uncle Vic who is moving back home. Sad that I didn't get to see him much cause he was really busy loading the truck and all that and then he had to turn around and hit the road. But no matter how short the visit, it's always awesome to see my parents. AND, in less than 3 weeks they're going to be here with us for Christmas anyways - yay!

Had a great weekend. Christa and Kristen invited some people over for an early Christmas dinner/get-together. It's always nice to get everyone together and just sit around and watch TV and chit chat. And, most importantly, eat YUMMY food. Christa made these crab hors d'ouevres thingies she found at Kraft Canada. Visit her blog for more info cause they were totally scrumptious. And Kristen made battered deep fried chicken. It was yummy too - Jamie went on and on about it, I swear. Kristen got the idea from trying an online recipe for KFC that didn't actually taste like KFC but then I think he tweaked it a bit to his own liking and then shared it with the rest of us. It really was dee-lish. Thanks guys!

Been having some success with the Christmas shopping and I am so happy to have the bulk of it DONE! My list:
Jamie - of course he's NOT DONE cause he's a nosy bugger and I have to wait until the last minute to do his shopping and then hide it almost to the point of me not being able to find it myself until Christmas morning.
Dad - He is the most difficult to buy for, never wants anything unless it's some sort of outrageously expensive tool or something I can't buy. He hates getting new clothes too. But he's almost done, just need to pick up one more little thing.
Mom - Almost as difficult as Dad. She always wants new clothes but finds it really hard to get things she likes. She wants "church" clothes (like sweater sets and skirts to mix and match) but it's getting harder and harder to find dressy stuff that's just normal and not either too casual or too fancy-schmancy. Anyways, almost done with her too except for helping Dad and my brother get her something.
My brother, Darren - DONE - often difficult (because in past he's wanted computer geek oriented stuff) but surprisingly helpful with gift ideas this year.
My sister, Tracey - DONE - she is the most wonderful person to buy things for. LOVE shopping for my sister because it kinda almost feels like shopping for myself. We like a lot of the same things and I always see wonderful gifts that I want to buy for her. I have to remind myself every year to stop with the sister purchases.
Erykah - Requested a Tomagotchi. I had no idea what this was but I hear they're quite popular. Got it in black, the colour she requested, even though it looks kinda boyish to me. Oh well, it's what she wanted. Gotta get a little something else to go with it.
Isabella - Dramatic middle child of my sister who I was told to also get a Tomagotchi for - BECAUSE if not she would just end up taking Erykah's all the time and causing big fights over it. Also got her a Dora backpack thingy with card games in it. Bella LOVES "Dowa"!
Olivia - DONE - got her these adorable Robeez slippers.
Richard - NOT done - loves hoodies and this is what I get him every year. Seems monotonous but it's easy.
Granny Goosney - NO IDEA - what in the world do you buy for grandmothers who have EVERYTHING!!!!???
Nan White - NO IDEA - got something but I might return it. See above comment!
Dad H - DONE - gift card = super easy! However, I just have to tell you about him so you can understand how my husband turned out the way he did about Christmas. Dad H got a new camera for Christmas from Mom H. He knew about said camera because he HAD to pick it out for himself. Now, Mom H can't wrap it up, it's pointless because he'll just unwrap it. He's continuously talking to Jamie about the camera and how it works and how he NEEDED to use it to figure it out for optimum Christmas morning photos. If he didn't get to open it til Christmas then he wouldn't know how to use it. Imagine! Now, you know why I would have to strangle Jamie if I got his Christmas presents any sooner than absolutely necessary.
Mom H - DONE - Wants a white sweater from Marks Work Warehouse EVERY YEAR!
Vanessa and Gord - DONE - got a nice gift between them for the house.
Taylor - DONE double duty - her birthday is 4 days before Christmas. But her mom always has nice ideas of things for us to get her (Bratz doll, clothes) and so it was quite easy to buy her gifts.
Grayson - DONE - Aquadoodle. Never even heard of this before but it looks super fun. The markers can colour on the aquadoodle thingy only but NO WHERE ELSE - not even the floor or walls or anywhere....lol :)
Amanda and Rob - DONE - gift cards.
Chloe - DONE ages ago when Amanda pointed out the perfect gift in the Sears catalog. And that's really the easiest option for shipping when we're here in Ontario and she's in Newfie.
Nan Laing - DONE - gift card.
My friend, Vicki - kinda DONE - but can't tell you anything cause she reads this blog...lol :)
Church Christmas Tree gift - pulled a tag on the tree at church to buy for a needy family. We have a 15-year old boy who would love a hooded sweatshirt. Should be easy enough but not done yet.
Caramel the Kitty - DONE - got him some cat grass to try. lol :)

So only a few things left and then I can wrap to my hearts content until Christmas Eve. Will need to still get stocking stuffers but those are pretty fun and easy to buy. Have started to stock up on holiday chocolate - mmmm choc-o-late!!! The boxes of Pot of Gold I bought at Shoppers Drug Mart (for only $3.99 on Sunday!!) have been calling my name but I hid them away so as not to open them - if I do open the boxes, those chocolates are NOT gonna see Christmas, that's fo' sho'! And this weekend should hopefully see a near end to it all because I'm taking the boys (Kristen and Chris) shopping for their girls while Christa helps the hubster buy gifts with her "Myrna expertise". lol :)

As for the Christmas decorations, got the outside of the house completed with the exception of our moose who is having some antler difficulties. We have red lights all around our roof, around the rail of our front porch and around the garage (with the outdoor garland stuff that looks like tree branches) - very pretty. Will take a pic to share, camera batteries died last night. On the inside, I took out some of my ornaments last night and set the table with a nice Christmas tablecloth and runner and centerpiece. Just have to wait now until we cut our tree on Sunday - that's gonna be SO much fun! I love having a real tree. Jamie's only complaint now is that the outside of the house looks so nice but we don't actually get to enjoy it, only people passing on the outside get to enjoy it. I'm sure he'll feel more in the holiday spirit when the lights are all up on the tree and all of the inside decorating is complete.

How's the Christmas season coming along for you?

Monday, November 27, 2006

Some General Info

I don't really have any SPECIFIC to write about today so just thought I'd fill you in with some general details from the week/weekend:

It was SUCH a nice weekend here so we decided it was a good time before the snow arrives to put up our Christmas lights. Of course, Jamie needed help because he's afraid of heights and refuses to get up on the roof so he went and picked up Chris to help us out. It was so funny...Jamie was freaking out at Chris half the time when he was climbing back and forth on the ladder. He'd be like "Ok Chris man, you're making me nervous. Hang on! I gotta get the ladder steady...." etc. And then Jamie actually climbed about 2 steps on the ladder and wanted me to take a picture of his great feat of bravery...he he :) See, I could have gotten up there myself but I was forbidden due to my off-balance pregnant state. Oh well, the hardest part is done now. Just gotta get the garland and lights around our railing and garage door and we'll be done. Yay! All together now: "It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas....everywhere you go!". We'll post pics of the finished product, hopefully soon.

Had Olivia on Sunday. She was a really good baby for me. She was born in March and so will be a year old when our new baby will be born. I reminded Jamie that this time next year we'll have our own little one PERMANENTLY! Kinda scary when I think of it but exciting too. Christmas will be even better then and it's already great!

Forgot to fill you in on details on my latest ultrasound results. I went to my midwife appointment last Wednesday and she told me the report stills shows "inconclusive". They speculate that there are 3-vessels now but they still couldn't achieve a good visual image. Here's the thing, as the midwife explained, there's absolutely nothing I can do about it either way besides just hope that all is well with the baby. Most of the time a problem with the cord is never detected with ultrasound and they only discover it at the birth. And then, for the most part, there are no problems with the baby otherwise. Everything else with the baby looks great - strong heart, all its fingers and toes, anatomically looks fine...so they have no reason to test further unless I insisted upon another ultrasound later in the pregnancy. I think, though, that I'll just let it rest and not worry unless another issue arises.

Wednesday I'm chopping my hair! Yes, I am! It's really long now (about half way down my back at least). Longer than it's been for a while but it's so super heavy and out of control. Reminds me of when I was a kid and granny used to tell me she could turn me upside-down and use me as a mop. So cruel! Anyways, it's gotta be done....something, not sure yet but I'll keep ya posted. I'm hoping the weight off my skull will help relieve the bloody headaches I've been getting over and over again every day. Can't hurt, that's for sure.

And I think that's all for now. Gonna go pick up my sister for lunch and go shopping at Costco. "Christmas, Christmas....Hip Hooray! Santa Claus is on his way, Santa Claus is on his way..." (I know, I know...stop with the singing already...that one's on the Smurf album...he he)

Bye for now
Myrna

Thursday, November 23, 2006

I've Heard it All

I'm sure any of you ladies out there who have been or who are prego have, like me, heard every old wives tale you can possibly imagine. You've had everyone comment on the size and shape of your belly. You've been groped (I, believe it or not, don't mind this much, of course depending on the person), you've been commented upon about your "condition" as if you're now inflicted with some sort of serious disease. You've been told all manner of silly advice about morning sickness, weight gain, stretch marks. You've been told the horror stories of labour and delivery. And the list goes on and on.

The least intrusive of all, possibly the most silly in its predictors, but just plain fun as we've ALL been there trying to place our bets: Is it a boy or is it a girl?

Hmmm....let's take a look at some of the methods of determining sex I've heard so far:

1. Heartrate: I've been told a heartrate less than 140 beats per minute, it's a boy. More than 140 beats per minute, it's a girl. I was keeping this in mind at my midwife appointment yesterday. And guess what the baby's heart rate was? Precisely 140 beats per minute....so what does that mean I wonder? lol :)

2. Shape of the infamous baby belly: If you're carrying high, it's a girl. Low and out front, it's a boy. According to Canadian Living.com this "myth" was startied in English folklore based on the fact that a girl requires more love and protection and therefore needs to be closer. A boy, on the other hand, needs more independence and stays further away from it's mother. Bah! Here's what doesn't make sense....the uterus doesn't even rise above the bellybutton at all until about 21 weeks or so. And so it's not until the very end that the baby could even possibly be "up high". Whatever!

3. How Active is the baby? So far my baby feels quite active, kicking me from the inside out, playing soccer with my bladder, rolling around, and all that good stuff. Feels very fascinating at this point. What I've been told? According to this, I must be having a BOY, of course. Boys are supposed to be more boistrous and sporty, girls more subdued and quiet. Ha! These people have obviously never met my very "subdued and quiet" nieces...Double HA!!

4. Dreams: Whatever the sex of the baby in your dreams, that's what you're having. In all of my baby dreams, it's a girl.

5. Cravings: Sweets: Girl; Salt: Boy. I've always craved sweets, particularly chocolate. This has not changed in the least during my pregnancy. Salt is yucky. Yup, must be a girl.

6. Morning Sickness: If you have morning sickness then you're having a girl. If you do not have morning sickness, it's a boy. Believe it or not there was a study done on this by swedish researchers and it was discovered that 56% of women with severe morning sickness actually ended up having baby girls. I've not been sick at all - well, one incident after lunch when I thought for 5 minutes or so that I might die - but otherwise, nothing. Still don't think I'll be painting the nursery blue on a percentage rating of only 6% above the 50/50.

7. The Ring Thing: You know the one where you suspend your wedding ring or a needle over your belly and the pendulum/circle swing indicates the sex? I think it's a girl for the circle, boy if it swings back and forth. I was convinced this one actually worked until Steph had a boy despite the needle clearly stating girl. So disappointing! But I've never had this work on me anyways, I get a different result every time someone does it.

8. Chinese Conception Chart: Apparantly this chart was developed way back in the 13th century by a scientist and it's reputed for being very highly accurate in China. I'm thinking we may possibly be in the wrong continent for this one. But it did actually work when I calculated for my sister's 3 kids - all girls! According to my chart, it's a boy!

9. Beauty or the Beast: If you lose your looks during pregnancy then you're having a girl because she's stealing your beauty. If you look great during your pregnancy then it's a boy because he apparantly doesn't need to be beautiful....? Nobody has commented about my facial appearance so far being either good or bad. They probably know better than to possibly try and tell me I look like crap. People have commented about my face shape "changing" but they've never explained if they feel it's because I'm having a boy or a girl.

10. Weight Gain: Not on me...on the hubby. If the husband gains weight, (yes, he has...Jamie's been a very "sympathetic" husband during this pregnancy - I swear he has WAY more cravings than I do..he he) it's a girl. If no weight gain, it's a boy.

11. Full Moon?: I've heard people talk about the moon cycles and how if it was a full moon during conception then it's a boy and if it's a half-moon, it's a girl. But I've never paid enough attention to know the full details of this "predictor" and I honestly had other other things on my mind "during" (if you know what I mean) than what the moon phases were.

12. Ovulation: The only one that may actually have some scientific origin. The closer to ovulation that you conceive then the greater the chances of having a boy. That's because the "male" sperm have a tendency to swim faster and therefore find the egg more quickly. If the egg is still a little far away then the male sperm tire and die off leaving the patient "female" sperm for fertilization a couple of days later.

Lucky #13: Mothers Intuition: According to one online study, about 71% of expectant mothers who had no previous medical indication of the sex of their child, guessed accurately about the sex of their baby simply according to how they felt. My feelings so far? Girl. Although when talking about the baby I almost always say, "He".

I found this test online http://www.childbirth.org/articles/boyorgirl.html According to the quiz, I have a 60% chance of having a boy.

I guess it really is going to be a surprise.

What predictors have you heard? Any of them "work" for you?

Tuesday, November 21, 2006

All her bags are packed...she's GONE!

It's a sad morning for me, Jennifers flight should have just taken off to head home to Newfoundland.

Yes, I'm really really super happy that she's gone home. She's starting a new life. A good life. She's headed to where her heart has been all along.

So just let me explain what I'm sad about:
It's about not seeing a friend you've seen almost every day for the past several years and never getting tired of them because they just bring a certain type of joy and laughter whenever they walk into a room; it's about not having my "girls" (Christa AND Jen) at work anymore with me and now it's depressing to even think of coming here ever morning; it's about missing my scrapbooking buddy, my movie buddy, my "girl-talk" (aka bitchin') buddy; it's about not having one of your best friends to share in one of the most memorable times in your life (the birth of my baby-to-be); it's about the type of real companionship that many people never get to experience in their lifetimes (I am so blessed to have several great girlfriends I feel this way about); it's about all those memories; it's simply about missing her!

Last night was rough having to say "goodbye". I tried to prepare my mind all day that it was just a "see ya later", that I could pretend it was sorta like she was taking an extended vacation and I would see her again really soon. We went to Jen's house, ate supper, sat around chatting, etc. and then it was time to leave. Jen walked Jamie and I to the door and we hugged, I totally kept it together and then she says, "Ok good, we have to fight the tears" and with that statement I just couldn't hold it in any longer. I just started to cry SO much. Jamie say his goodbye and left at this point, we hugged again, and I was out the door. I cried most of the way home. Thought I was fine until Jamie said something about me being upset and then I started to cry again. Ugh! You wouldn't know but I was never going to talk to her or see her again. And I'm usually not this emotional at all (I'm sure prego hormones aren't helping) so I'm not even sure what to do with myself.

So anyways, I just hope all goes okay with the flight home for Jenny and that she settles into her new job with ease, that she enjoys this new time close to her family in Newfoundland. Hopefully it won't be long before Chris gets to join her after they sell the house and get everything "up here" straightened away. I really do wish her all the very best and even though I miss her, I'm glad she's made this decision.

And besides, starting this afternoon, she's really only a phone-call away...right?

Thursday, November 16, 2006

Dollaramma Drama

Forgot to tell you about this little incident that happened to me a couple of weeks ago when I visited one of the dollar stores here in Brampton.

Warning: If you're queasy, uneasy, or easily grossed out, you may not want to continue reading.

I get off work earlier than Jamie and we were meeting each other to drive away in our new SUV. So while waiting for him I decided to go to the dollar store and scout out the scrappin supplies and shop for Operation Christmas Child.

Jamie called, I was checking out and I told him I would be just a couple of minutes. As I'm leaving, about to walk through the out door, an older lady is coming through the IN door. Suddenly, she trips on the ledge just inside the door, falls forward into the little porch area, and hits her head on the sharp STEEL facing of the second door entering the main store. OUCH! She immediately gets up on her knees and puts her hand to her upper left forehead. I say "Are you ok?" and then crouch down next to her.

I tell the cashier she needs to call 911...she's looking at me like I'm a dummy and so I raise my voice for emphasis, "YOU NEED TO CALL 911!". Cashier girl still dilly-dallies, probably worried about the impatient customers in line, and instead calls for her manager.

I look back at the lady and she pulls her hand away from her forehead. She's wondering if she's bleeding. Of course she is! Majorly bleeding! Blood has been oozing through her fingers and now it's dripping down her arm and onto her coat. I look at her forehead (this is a gross part for those of you who didn't listen to my previous warning) and there's a gash from her left temple going above her eye and ending mid-hairline. The skin is broken and peeled back exposing the white bone underneath. Poor little spanish lady...all she can say in English at this point..."Oh MY GOD! Oh MY GOD!"...she keeps talking to me pointing to the place where she tripped, "No good! Oh MY GOD, I trip...no good" and I nod at say "I know...it's ok." I grab for the new facecloths I just purchased and help her hold them to her head. Now there's blood on my hands too.

Manager shows up in between here - keep in mind this is really only a minute passing - and she sees I'm serious about the 911 thing as this lady is really hurt. She's talking to the operator, telling what happened, telling her the woman's age (66), asking me if she had been unconscious at any point, etc. She hangs up. She gets me another cloth and latex gloves - too late for the gloves I'm afraid...what's a girl to do? Say, "Sorry lady, no gloves, can't help you"...I coudn't! In that moment, it didn't even cross my mind.

The lady who's hurt says "My husband" and I assumed he must have been parking and coming behind her. He was. He walks in the door - a full 4 ft. of him, I'm almost as tall as he is and I'm kneeling down. But he's MAD as a bull...I'm looking at him in complete amazement as he throws down his hat, starts yelling at his wife in spanish, then saying in English, "I don't believe this!". I get that he's frustrated...maybe she's super clumsy or something...I can tell she's trying to explain but not making much of an impact on his lack of concern. And that's when I said, "No sir, you don't understand. She tripped, it's not her fault." That's when she shows him the laceration, he suddenly shuts up and becomes loving husband and helps her hold her hand to her head. He doesn't say much else but the occasional translation to me of what she's trying to say, asking if she's okay, I can tell he's feeling really bad about his prior outburst - he should be.

I'm just kneeling and waiting, telling her "It's ok", asking if she feels okay, if she feels sick, reminding her to keep pressure on her head and then I hear the sirens. Thank God! The ambulance was fast!

EMT's ask me what happened, ask if she had passed out at any time, if she's had any seizure activity - nothing. They ask her husband about her medical history. I ask them if they need me for anything further. We're all in a tiny porch and there must be nothing worse for EMT's trying to do their work to help someone while being crowded by unimportant spectators. They tell me I can go. The Dollaramma lady takes my name and number just in case. The spanish lady pulls at my jacket tail and keeps saying, "Thank you! Thank you!" I give her a quick hug and send out a little prayer. She's in good hands now.

I walk away. I'm worried the rest of the night about this lady but I leave her in Gods hands knowing he's the best caretaker there is.

I'm reminded that God uses us all sometimes when we are available for him. I wasn't even planning to go to this specific dollar store but there I was. I've been in similar situations as this. Blood/medical stuff doesn't bother me. God knows this. Maybe this is how he uses me from time to time - to help a little old lady with her head cut open in the dollar store. Maybe it's insignifant in the broad scheme of things but I still feel good. I hope Spanish lady feels good too.

Sunday, November 12, 2006

Baby Steps

We're gradually getting closer and closer to having the house organized for when baby arrives. I really hope this "nesting" thing lasts long enough to get everything done (what are the chances?) Small things off the very long checklist include:
- Cleaned out my "scrapbook room" which will become the nursery.
- Picked up paint chips from Home Depot to decide on nursery colours. Will post my ideas for the nursery later.
- Moved all of my scrapbook things to the guest bedroom.
- Decided the guest bedroom was too crammed and then moved the scrapbook table and supplies to the basement.
- Organized all of the boxes that were scattered in our unfinished basement. Darren's things are under the stairs, Christmas things in the "hallway" next to the stairs, my bins of craft stuff, camping supplies, and partylite boxes squeezed in between wherever.
- Jamie shopvaced the entire concrete basement floor (Boy, what a LOT of dust...yuck!)
- Cleaned out my closet (a while back) and now have the guest bedroom closet FULL of clothes I need to sort through to either a) give away or b) keep and hope to fit into after the baby arrives.
- Installed blinds in the baby-to-be bedroom.
- Cleaned out the downstairs hall closet, put away summer shoes, and organized the junk that had accumulated on the shelf in said closet.
- Finally bought mats for the front hallway.
- Bought and mailed the fabric to my mom for her to design and sew the baby's crib quilt and curtains.

Still remaining on the list to try and complete in the very near future:
- Choose colours and paint baby room (possibly complete with a mural inspired by my creative friend, Daphne, who just did her son's room with lots of superheros...check out her blog from my main page).
- Get rid of the computer from OUR bedroom (I hate having the computer in the master bedroom) and finally move it into the guest bedroom.
- Sort all of that clothes.
- Wash baby clothes I've already accumulated from my sister and sister-in-law.
- Set up TV in the basement so I can scrapbook and enjoy my favourite shows all at the same time.
- Change around our bedroom because I'm really bored of the current furniture placement.
- Sew dark lining in the drapes in our bedroom to keep the light out at 6am.

And then comes Christmas and a whole new To-Do List.

And then comes the baby and nothing on MY To-Do list will ever be done!

Wish me luck!

P.S. Have to go for a follow-up ultrasound tomorrow morning. They need to confirm something they couldn't quite see with the umbilical cord the first time around (they speculate the baby may have a 2-vessel cord, supposed to be 3-vessels, but results not yet conclusive). Won't get results until Nov 22nd but I'll keep you posted. Keep me and wee babe in your thoughts and prayers please.

Friday, November 10, 2006

Operation Christmas Child

With Christmas just around the corner comes the time of the year for Operation Christmas Child. Christa already mentioned briefly in her blog but I'm going to give you the details. This is my fourth year organizing involvement in this project here at my work and I love it! It really is a wonderful charity, it is simple, inexpensive, AND a very tangible way to get involved and help kids all around the world who have been greatly affected by war, famine, poverty, and disease. Many of these kids have never received ANYTHING, many of them don't even have family, and my heart goes out to them. Sometimes it's hard to know what to do to help but I believe this is a start...

Here's the letter I sent out to my coworkers:

Hello Everyone,

I've just checked the official countdown website http://home.valornet.com/sabruf2/countchr.html and we are now, believe it or not,
80 Days until Christmas Day! *(It's now actually only 44 Days til Christmas...wow!!)*

And now is the time of year to send my email regarding Operation Christmas Child a.k.a Shoebox gifts.

Many of you already know how this works. Operation Christmas Child is a project founded by the Samaritans Purse, a non-denominational christian organization founded in 1970 to provide emergency and international relief to victims of war, poverty, disease, and famine. The "shoebox gifts" began over 13 years ago with an emphasis on giving to children. The project involves filling a shoebox with new items to be sent to needy children all over the world. Here's the general outline once again with a few minor changes this year:

1. Come see me for your brochure complete with instructions and Boy/Girl label which you will need to stick to your box when you are done. *For you, visit the website for info http://www.samaritanspurse.ca/occ/ *

2. Find a Shoebox (or any box) - or many people last year used small plastic shoebox sized totes or photo boxes you can find at the dollar store or Walmart.

3. Boy or Girl - Is your gift for a boy or a girl? Choose an age (2 - 4 years, 5 - 9, or 10 -14).

4. Begin Collecting Items to fill your Shoebox. This is the fun part! Your neighbourhood dollar store is probably your best place to shop.
Items can include:
- Toys (Doll, ball, yo yo, slinky, cars, etc.)
- Toiletry items (comb, toothbrush/paste, washclothes, soap bar inside a plastic bag, etc.)
- School Supplies (pens, pencils, crayons, writing pads, colouring books, etc.)
- Candy (Last year, you could include gum, this year they have changed it to include HARD INDIVIDUALLY WRAPPED CANDY ONLY)
- Others (socks, tshirts, hair clips, sunglasses, hats, etc.)
Remember DO NOT include:
- Liquids (these can freeze or spill)
- Food items (candy mentioned above is okay but chocolate, for example, can melt)
- Breakables (ceramic figurines, glass cups, mirrors)
- Used Items
- Harmful or "Scary" Items (war figures, toy guns, sharp objects)

5. Pack your Box. You can wrap your shoebox in Christmas paper if you wish. Make sure you wrap the lid separately. You may also include a photo of yourself or your family or a letter to "your" child. When you are done, stick your Boy/Girl label on top of the box, check off the appropriate age, and secure the box with an elastic band or two.

6. $7 Shipping/Handling Cost PER box: Please keep in mind these boxes are travelling to all corners of the world and the organization needs this money to send your gifts. This means a packaged shoebox will cost you approximately $17-$22 in TOTAL. Your dollar store items will cost you between $10 - $15 plus your shipping fee of $7.

6. Drop off - at my work, everyone brings them to me and I drop them off. *For you,
Visit the website http://www.samaritanspurse.ca/occ/dropoff_locations/ for the location nearest you.

MORE OPTIONS:

1. You can make a cash donation to the organization. Remember that any amount over $10 is tax deductible.

2. Other gifts: Samaritans Purse also provides many other services for needy families around the world. There's a catalog (or see online) where you can purchase items such as Mosquito Nets ($9), Hot Meals for a week and a half ($10), Family Survival Kit including bottled water, blankets, cooking items ($65), Medical Supplies ($100), etc.

I have been asked "How do you know this organization is legit?", "How do you know where the money goes?". These are very valid questions and I've asked them myself. I have done quite a bit of research about the "Samaritan's Purse" organization and I am very confident that our donations and shoebox gifts are indeed reaching all over the world to children in need. If you would like to research for yourself, financial statements, auditors reports, etc. are all listed online at http://www.samaritanspurse.ca/occ/. You can also visit me for a video (from last year) or a new DVD (en route to me) to see gifts being delivered. It's amazing to watch the children so thrilled by such a small shoebox filled with items most of us take for granted. *This video is also available to watch online*

Thank you so much in advance for your participation. Feel free to contact me if you have any further questions or concerns.

Sincerely
Myrna Hynes

Just something to keep in mind. Christmas is a time of giving and I believe that God greatly blesses us for the work we do to help those in need. For this and any other involvements you have in your church, school, community, or business - THANK YOU!

Monday, November 06, 2006

Happy #29 Daphne!!

Saturday, November 04, 2006

A Couple o' Things


Here is the latest and greatest picture of me at 20 weeks 5 days prego...standing at the top of our stairs, still in pj's at 2pm on a saturday afternoon, trying to tell Jamie how to operate our digital, boobs hangin' quite heavy, and baby growing and kicking and squirming (that's the fun part!).

So far, I have to say pregnancy has been quite good to me. I feel great other than not sleeping so well a lot of the time and feeling slightly tired. But otherwise, in the past 4 weeks, I've only had puffy swollen feet a little bit, heartburn once, crampy "period" achiness for an hour or so, and the occasional but seldom bout of emotional outbursts consisting of tears, impatience, anger, sometimes all of the above. Maybe I'm not doing so good after all...lol :)

In other news, JENNIFER IS LEAVING US!! Yup, she got a call on Thursday with the good news of a position at the bank back home in Newfoundland. She's very excited. I'm very excited for her. She and Chris both really want to move back and I don't blame them. This is a great opportunity and Jenny, I wish you all the best! On the flip side of that happiness is me feeling completely devestated - I'm very sad and depressed at the idea of not having Jennifer around. I work with her, see her on the weekends, scrapbook with her, talk to her about everything. It's crazy to think of her being so far away and I will miss her immensely! (I will stop now in avoidance of teary outburst as mentioned above).

And thirdly, we got a new SUV - lease was up on our old Escape so we got another one just yesterday. Jamie is SO excited. I think he took a picture of every single angle (inside and out) to email his father. Here "she" is:


Have a great weekend everyone!
Myrna

Tuesday, October 31, 2006

Happy Halloween

Happy Halloween everyone...didn't dress up in the office this year but I did wear black and orange and pinned a spider brooch on my shirt...I think it's fun to join in and celebrate the day.

Here are some pics from the girls pumpkin carving on Friday night:

This first one is of all 5 of us girls...Amanda, Christa, Me (holding poor little Tristan in what Jen calls the "Michael Jackson crotch hold" pose...tsk tsk!), Steph, and Jennifer.














And these are some of the finished products. Sorry, some of the pics are a bit blurry.











And then we decided that a picture of Baby Tristan INSIDE a pumpkin would be the cutest thing - turned out he felt it was really the most cruel thing and cried the entire time. AND THEN, we had a bit of a predicament getting him out of the pumpkin because his shoulder got stuck and we had to "deliver" Tristan again (we tried to reassure him that it was just the same as when he was born but again he wasn't convinced). So, we decided we would be nice and then just put him ON TOP of the pumpkin and Christa got some cute shots.

Friday, October 27, 2006

20 Week Ultrasound

I know they're really hard to pick out but I wanted to share anyways. I was so excited to see the baby on the monitor at the ultrasound clinic (so much clearer than on the pictures). Just amazing to see the heart beating and the baby moving all around in there and all that. Jamie said he was just trying to see if it was a boy or a girl, even though we're keeping it a surprise. lol.

Pictures #1 and #2: Baby Face Pics. I've turned them on the side so you can see the image a little better. In the bottom pic the small white circle you can faintly see in the eye is the iris.




















Picture #3: This is the baby face down. You can see the spine and the shape of the head.















Picture #4: Baby Foot. I'm obsessed with baby feet so I was so happy to get this pic. Just after this one was taken the baby reached down with its hand to grab its foot. So cute!

Wednesday, October 25, 2006

Cartoon

Saw this cartoon in the weekend paper and laughed so hard because it really reminded me of Jamie and I. Thought I'd share. You might have to CLICK ON IT to make it bigger to read, I couldn't get it to post any larger.

Thursday, October 19, 2006

Don't Like Em

Reader Discretion Advised:
Strong opinions expressed in the following email. My apologies to offended readers who disagree (feel free to leave a comment).
Sincerely
Myrna




I know they're all the craze right now.
I know they're supposedly super duper comfy.
I know how Faith Hill was on Oprah saying how she thought they were ugly but she just loved them and that's when it all started.
I know they come in a variety of fun colours.
I know they are approximately $35 CDN for the real ones but only about $9 for the knock-offs.

I know all of this but:
I still think they're ugly.
They still look like my grandmothers green garden shoes.
Still kinda remind me of the pink ducky-boots I got teased about wearing when I was a kid.

I can handle:
The black ones in small doses.
Wearing them in the privacy of my backyard while pulling weeds or hanging clothes on the line.

I can't handle:
Wearing them in public places, not even the grocery store (I am fully aware that I may eat my words on this one).
The pink and purple and neon green ones.
Especially when they are worn to the office with "dress" clothes. Not cool!

And that's my vent for today...thank you for your time and attention in this matter.

Don't Wanna Talk About it

Jamie didn't want to have this discussion but I felt it was necessary. I suppose it really hits home for him since he lost his mom when he was just a little boy. The thought of another similar event in his life was too much for him to want to think about. However, I couldn't help but get these feelings of impending doom, like something could happen to me and I needed to prepare Jamie just in case. I felt a little silly bringing it up. But it really could happen and I don't want to be that naive. And here's kinda how the conversation went:

Me: Jamie, we really need to talk about if something happens to me when I'm having the baby.
Jamie: I don't want to talk about it.
Me: Well I really think we do need to talk about it just in case.
Jamie: Stuff like that doesn't happen in this day and age.
Me: Maybe not very often but it CAN happen. I don't want to one of those people who feels it could NEVER happen to them. So if you don't want to talk then just listen to what I have to say.

I proceeded to tell him the following things I had in mind. I said:

"First of all, I don't want you to get so depressed and lay on the couch feeling sorry for yourself and just hand off our baby to someone else to raise. It would be so easy to tell the grandmothers to take the baby and raise it because you can't handle it. But that wouldn't be right. You can do it with or without me. And you'll need help, don't be afraid to accept it. Of course you'll need my mom and your mom to come and help any way they can but I don't want you to ship the baby home to Newfoundland (except for a temporary summer vacation) just so you don't have to deal with how difficult it will be."

"Secondly, I know you'll be feeling like you don't know what you're doing. Especially if we have a baby girl, you'll be feeling like you're inadequate and need to find a new mommy right away. But, I'd honestly appreciate it if you took at least a year to find someone new. You need time to mourn and adjust. And you don't need to feel like you have to be the dad AND the mom. Just be the dad. Be the best father you can be and between the grandmas and aunties and friends, our baby will have lots of "moms" to fill in until you meet someone else."

And I'd like you to still go to church. This is where he just kinda looked at me and I knew exactly what he was thinking to which I replied, "And not just at Easter and Christmas". He grinned cause I hit the nail on the head. "I mean really going on a fairly regular basis like we do now. It doesn't have to be my church, it can be your church, wherever you're comfortable. But, our child needs to know about having a relationship with God and the importance of religion in a family. "

And I think that's all I said, probably more jumbled and not exactly in that order but you get the idea. I asked him if he was okay with all that and he nodded yes. And then I started to get all teary-eyed so I got up and walked away. I'm really not good at crying in front of him at all.

But I forgot to tell him this one last thing: PLEASE don't name our child Baxter!!

(yes, this is one of the names he keeps bringing up)

Now that it's off my chest, I feel much better. Now, I just have to leave it to God.
Am I crazy for feeling the need to talk about this? Did any of you ever experience this kind of sense that something bad could easily happen to you?

Tuesday, October 10, 2006

Time to Give Thanks!

Happy (belated) Thanksgiving to all!

It was an awesome long weekend which began with my hubby bringing home flowers for me on Friday evening. It was such a surprise. He said he knew I would love them because they were the colours of fall (mostly orange) and I LOVE fall colours. He was right, they are beautiful and they made a really lovely centerpiece for our dining table for thanksgiving dinner.

Thanksgiving dinner was hosted by yours truly - with Jamie doing MOST of the cooking. I must take some credit, of course, for helping peel veggies, mixing bread pudding (duff, as Jamie calls it), preparing the gravy, setting the table, etc. But he did honestly prepare the turkey and take care of most of the cooking stuff...and then the girls helped as always...Christa made stuffing, Jen and Tracey made yummy cheesecake desserts. Phew! Cause although I LOVED the idea of having everyone over, I really didn't feel like cooking. And if I must say so myself, everything was rather yummy! Our guests - my sister and Richard and the 3 girls, Jen and Chris, Christa and Kristen (who arrived later after hunting for the day), Blaine (Christa's brother), and my brother - all seemed to enjoy it too. Thanks everyone for coming!

And what else do I have to be thankful for besides a group of fabulous family and friends to spend these special times with:
1. Jamie and I starting a family of our own with the new baby on the way.
2. A nice house that keeps getting more and more like home with each added touch.
3. A heavenly father who supplies all our needs even when it seems like we're broke all the time.
4. Knowing we are really among the wealthiest in the world even when it seems like we're broke all the time.
5. Health and strength
6. Employment
7. Good food *Chocolate* almost being in a category on its own.
8. Good fun - smiles, laughter, and all of the warm fuzzy feelings that go along with it.
9. All of the gazillion little things I love about life right now - like the changing colours of autumn, having time to scrapbook after a busy summer, Jamie noticing how my belly is being to "pop out" and seeing him smile because of it, the bugs going away, our first cute little trick or treaters soon to be at the new house, making Christmas lists, taking walks with Christa in the cool air, etc. etc....I could just go on forever.
10. Did I mention awesome family and friends...whom I love and adore beyond anything and everything?

Hope your Thanksgiving was an occasion marked not only by turkey but also by time of reflection and gratitude and fellowship.

Friday, October 06, 2006

Sometimes Life Stinks

My Uncle was telling us about a stinky situation he encountered during the summer. He and my Aunt couldn't help but notice the pungent smell of a certain little black and white creature permeating their backyard day after day. This, of course, is not necessarily unusual for city life as "forest" animals find themselves needing to adapt to the ever-growing urban sprawl. Raccoons and skunks and opossums are regular backyard visitors - but it's the skunks who have been cursed with that undeniable signature odour.

And when the odour didn't eventually start to fade, my uncle investigated and found the little intruder huddled beneath the bushes against the fence in his adjoining neighbours backyard. And so, he called the local animal control.

Animal control came and said they couldn't get the skunk because it wasn't in HIS yard and his fence was blocking her access. So, like anyone desperate to relieve their nose, my Uncle basically says, "Oh yeah, watch this!" and proceeds to tear his fence apart against the back.

The little skunk didn't even spray them. Just sat there huddled and scared under the bushes. The animal control lady had a towel (not sure what that would prevent) to try and protect her against the spray should the skunk decide to let loose. But, he didn't. The lady pulled him out with that little noose thingy they use and put him in a cage.

My Uncle and the Animal Control girl couldn't help but notice that the little skunk looked rather distressed. It was weepy eyed and just plain down-and-out. My Uncle said it looked like the skunk was crying, Miss Animal Control said he was probably really ill and no longer had any control over his gland function. And that's why it couldn't help but continue to spray even though not particularly threatened. A skunk will not spray on purpose unless absolutely necessarily because, apparantly, they don't even like their own smell.

And as I'm hearing this story, my mind immediately begins thinking of how bad that little skunk must have felt - scared and huddled all alone under the bushes, not knowing where to go. Perhaps it had a disease like Trimethylaminuria and was shunned by all its skunky friends and family and banished from the forest. Perhaps, THAT'S why it was crying. Perhaps (at least in my head) hiding in the backyard of a human was the only place the little skunk had to go, it's last hope in being "rescued" and being rid of its lifelong misery.

And then, when Miss Animal Control put the skunk into the back of her truck, he once again (involuntarily, I like to think) released his musky scent. A final goodbye.

Tuesday, October 03, 2006

16 Weeks


Well I have to say I do feel a smidge weird about posting this pic of me with my belly exposed. But, I suppose it's not really much different than pics of me in my bathing suit. And so far I really don't see that I look much different than the normal me in my bathing suit, belly "pook" and all. lol :) I'm told that skinny girls (a category into which I do not fit) tend to "show" much sooner. As for me, baby is just growing into the not-so-flat belly I already had.

Anyways, so far I hadn't taken ANY pics at all of my growing baby belly. And after looking at prego pics of Terri Hann (Martin) on her website, I was inspired to finally take a few of my own. I realized that later down the road I would be really disappointed to not be able to look back and see what I looked like on my journey to becoming a new mom.

Sorry if anyone's offended at seeing me with my boobs hanging out...he he :)


UPDATE: added a few minutes later when Jennifer tells me that I should post this one because the different angle makes it look like I'm actually pregnant. (Please excuse the blinding flash of me taking pics of myself in my bathroom mirror...lol) Here it is:

Grayson's Birthday Pics

I'm a little late and unfortunately my camera died and I didn't get any pics of the cake. But here they are, pics of Grayson's little party:

Under the coffee table to get the balls for her new tent (you know the ones that are enclosed and filled with those little balls that kids...and possibly some adults...just love to roll around in.)

Didn't I tell you how scrumptious she is, even when all messy with watermelon!

Wow! A pink car! Immediately she says, "Daddy open it!"


Doesn't want to open more boring gifts - just wants to play with her new pink car...who can blame her? lol :)

Tuesday, September 26, 2006

Do you have the sithers?

Thought it was funny so I put it as my title: "Sithers" Otherwise known as: the hubster asking me for the SCISSORS. lol...I'm such a fun-maker.

Remember back last September (yeah, who am I kidding, right? who can remember yesterday even?) when I wrote this and then this. Anyways, he came back in the office today. I didn't speak to him. He just came in to pick up a typewriter for repair and then was off again. But I was just so excited to see him. Totally made my day, believe it or not.

Know what also made my day? My midwife appointment. Wanna know why? Cause my hubby decided to go with me and we got to hear the heartbeat for the first time ever! It was so exciting. The midwife is doing her thing with the doppler and Jamie and I are just grinning at each other from either side of her. After having apprehensive moments lately about being in the stage of not really feeling or looking pregnant, it really was the most beautiful sound ever. But then my midwife kinda subtly gave me heck about my not so great picky-eating and the beautiful moment ended (however temporary, still messed up my joy in that moment...the joy has since returned).

And then despite having to work late, I have something else that totally made my day. Boy, I really did have a good day, didn't I? I walk in my house at like 6:15 and there's the hubster with the couch and love seat and cushions all pulled out in the middle of the living room and he's vacuuming like a madman. And then I go in the kitchen and supper (spaghetti and meat sauce) is COOKED and waiting for me. Yup, today I love my husband. Tomorrow, we'll see how it goes. lol :)

Monday, September 25, 2006

Olivia's Christening





I'm BACK...

Ok, so it's really weird that I haven't been blogging I know. Normally, I love this "journalling" thing so much that I'm totally on top of it, at least a couple of entries a week. These past 3 weeks, however, have been craziness!! Jenny was off on vacation which meant more work for me to do. And because (shhhhh!) I almost always blog at my desk in the office, that meant no blogging pour moi...suffering. severe. withdrawals. from making the whole world wide web aware of my life story.

I missed telling you about two of my nieces-in-laws birthdays....Happy Birthday Chloe and Happy Birthday Grayson! Born within 4 days of each other on Sept 20th and Sept 24th respectively, they are both 2 years old this year. Unfortunately we don't get to see Chloe on her birthdays because she's back in Nfld but we did go to Grayson's party on Sunday. I have some pics. She's so petite and simply scrumptious. tee hee!

And my niece, Olivia, had her christening on Sept 13th while mom and dad were here visiting. I have lots of pics from that event too. I'm finding my camera (could be the photographer perhaps) taking really dark shots lately. The church was really well lit for the christening but it still seems like a lot of my photos have really dark backgrounds. Not sure how to fix that. Will post later.

Did I mention that I'm really really super glad Jen is back to work today. I'm glad she's back in general too, we literally have barely stopped talking all morning. So much to discuss after 3 weeks.

Congrats to my college bud, Kerri, and her hubby Ryan, who welcomed a new little bundle of joy on Sept 8th. Baby girl Alannah is adorable!

Pregnancy Update: Nothing new except I am slowly but surely growing out of my regular clothing. I have just a couple pairs of pants and a couple of skirts left that fit and I keep wearing them over and over again. But I kinda feel weird starting to wear maternity clothes at this point because I don't "look" pregnant. Know what I mean? Anyways, I do have some maternity clothes that have been very graciously donated to me from family and friends. I'm taking all the hand-outs I can get to fit because it's absolutely startling how much maternity clothes costs to buy new in the store. Of course I'll have to get a few pieces but I'm trying to refrain from spending too much. My next midwife appointment is tomorrow so I'll let you know how that goes. Hoping to hear the heartbeat this time so we'll see. That'll be SO exciting! If not, I have my routine ultrasound appointment made for Oct 26th. I just can't wait!

And I think that's pretty much it for now. I'm sure I'll think of lots more to tell. And keep in touch for the most recent pics.

Friday, September 15, 2006

My Couch is Calling Me

Well Mom and Dad are at the airport now and will be flying back home to Newfoundland in about 1 hour. They arrived last Wednesday night, kind of a last minute decision. Unfortunately I wasn't able to spend as much time with them as I would have liked because I couldn't take any time off work. But, it's okay, we made the best of our evenings together. They took turns staying with my sister and I and we had one weekend to spend together. Gotta do as much as you can when you don't get to see each other all that often. Hope they have a good flight back. Good thing that storm has passed now. Mom would have been freakin' out if not.

The week at work has been absolutely crazy since Jenny is home in Newfoundland as well. That means I have two desks to work on. I seriously cannot wait to just get home and lay on my couch and put my feet up and do diddly-squat!!

Mom thinks my pregnancy is showing a little bit...he he...she says I have "a little pook" lol :) Personally I think the "pook" has always been there and I'm just at the point now where I can no longer suck it in. Know what I mean? But before long I guess I'll be seeing a real change in my growing belly. I'm so excited to get to the point where I actually look pregnant. I think pregnant women look so cute. But I know when I get to that point I'll probably be feeling like an ugly beached whale. Oh well, just gotta think of the final outcome and it's all worth it.

I was so excited about scrapbooking for a bit this weekend but it seems Christa has ditched me in favour of cooking cod fish....lmao! I suppose I can forgive her since it's such a yummy meal.

And now I really gotta leave this place (i'm finishing up at work and typing this) and go home to my hubster. (Who, by the way, really hurt his back and is probably very stoned on pain killers and muscle relaxers right now).

Bye for now :)

Monday, September 11, 2006

We Remember

It's hard to believe this tragedy ever happened let alone that it was 5 years ago! I still remember hearing the news of the first plane hitting. We listened in disbelief, crowding around Ron's desk to watch CNN and theorizing about what happened - an accident perhaps? And then watching the second plane hit in horror - I will never forgot that image. How the families directly affected have gotten through this terrible loss is beyond me, I simply cannot even imagine. To the people who were there and watched with their own two eyes, to those families who lost friends and loved ones, to the firefighters and police officers who gave their lives, to the volunteers who searched for days on end to recover missing people and who now suffer from cancer and respiratory illnesses as a result, to all of those people, please know you are in all our thoughts and prayers today.

I saw this drawing online by Hannah Beach. The tower on the left is saying "Oh no! I can't take it any longer." while both are crying and holding hands. It really struck me as I'm sure it will you.

Tuesday, September 05, 2006

Happy Birthday Tara!

Full Day

Erykah begins her first FULL day of school today. Grade 1 is a big step, maybe more for me than for her. Now she'll have to eat lunch at school and have 2 recesses and take the bus with the "big" kids. So scary!

I was explaining to someone this morning - when we were growing up in Newfoundland, when parents sent us off to school, they knew everyone. They knew all of the kids and all of the parents, they knew the teachers, the principal, the janitor. When my sister sends Erykah off to school here in the city, she doesn't really know anybody. (Although Phew! Luckily Erykah's grandma is a teacher at her school in one of the older grades - a relief that she has someone there for her just in case). But still, it's like a whole other world - sending a 6-year old to a foreign place full of bullies and strangers and hall monitors to fend for herself. I don't like the thought of it.

I was reminiscing about Erykah's journal from last year and it makes me remember the wonderful things about school. She's learning so much, has learned to print and spell some small words, enough to write a sentence or two. My sister showed me the journal and I understood why mom always said when she needed cheering up, she would read my school journal. The entries are simple and full of spelling mistakes - the mistakes that show how hard she's trying to "sound out" the words (not knowing yet that some words really do spell differently than they sound until you learn the "tricks"). Each entry has a little drawing and the description below. For example, the "My mommy is having a baby" entry. OR the "I'm going to the ballpark tonight with Auntie Myrna" entry. And my ultimate favourite: the "Hmmm. How did Danielle's blue pencil get in my pencil case?" entry. So cute.

And now begins another year of learning so many new things. I called Erykah and Taylor both last night and wished them a good day and talked about their new backpacks and asked about their new school clothes, etc. They seem happy to be going back so I'm trying to be happy too amidst the worry.

What in the world am I going to do when I have my own kids?

Monday, August 28, 2006

Never Cry Wolf

Frustrating...

She's like the fable "The boy who cried wolf". And one of these days, something is really genuinely going to be wrong with her and then nobody is going to pay attention, no one will care, no one will listen, and not one single person is going to believe her.

Those of you who know me, probably know exactly who I'm talking about.

Those of you who don't know me really well, probably know someone who is exactly like this.

And doesn't it put ya right smack dab in the middle of a moral dilemma? It's one of those situations where I have no idea how far sympathetic human kindness is supposed to go. Should I take the time each and every day to ask "How are you feeling?" or "What happened?" only to spend 15 depressing minutes listening to how horrible her life is, how terrible the health of her family, how devoid of joy the world around her has turned out to be? Should I pretend to be interested? I suppose I shouldn't pretend, I should genuinely be concerned - if for nothing else, for the state of her mental health. For we have all learned that almost all of these ailments are nothing short of a sad effort to gain attention.

Unfortunately though, I have learned to ignore the daily ailments. I turn a blind eye to the fake coughs and the "oh so terrible migraine headaches" (trust me, I have migraines and I wouldn't be functioning like that if I had a migraine so I'm sorry, but it's hard to believe you), the moaning and groaning, the numerous diseases (and when I say numerous, I mean numerous), the extreme depression, the "mine is worse than yours" syndrome, etc. I could go on and on.

I wonder how all of this started? Childhood perhaps? Was that the only way she ever got any attention - when she was sick? Was someone always telling her she was no good and now that's what she believes? What does a person gain from this type of behaviour?

And seriously, one day something's going to go very wrong. There's going to be a real problem to deal with and then when I don't believe it, I'm going to feel so guilty. I'm going to feel like I should have listened, should have helped out. My conscience is plagued with the thought of it. I'm sure it'll pass...sad to say...but in the meantime, just had to get my thoughts out and allow you a moment to delve into my evil "should really have an easier time being nice" psyche.

Tuesday, August 22, 2006

First Midwife Appointment

...was yesterday morning. It wasn't in fact a REAL appointment, nothing physical involved. It was more of a chat to introduce, for the midwife (Shirley, in this case) to explain their philosophy and share how the clinic works. Of course, she gave me the shortened version based on the fact that I already have some experience (3, to be exact a.k.a. my sister's 3 girls) with the midwifery clinic.

Shirley and I discussed my crazy heart-shaped uterus. She has had many clients with uterine anomolies and just had a woman deliver her 3rd child with a bicornuate uterus. The woman had to have a c-section for her 1st and 3rd child but delivered naturally for the 2nd. I told her that my family doctor had already sent in a referral to an OB/GYN in Brampton. Of course, I haven't heard from this doctor yet. But that's probably a good thing based on the fact that I've now learned that this particular doctor does not like nor does he cooperate to work with the midwives. He is old and very stuck in his ways and therefore very quick to intervene with medical interventions rather than first using some more natural methods. He is quick to perform a c-section and does not believe in VBAC (Vaginal birth after caesarean). This was the thing back in the day but isn't necessarily the practice now, as many mothers are able to deliver naturally after having a c-section based upon their individual circumstances. She informed me that it was absolutely my choice, that the doctor I was referred to is certainly a wonderful doctor and caregiver who is very cautious. But given the choice, I feel that he is not the one for me. I choose to stick with the midwives and they will in turn consult when needed with an OB who is cooperative with their clinic and practices. After all, I am at quite a high risk of needing a c-section and we have to make sure to do what's best for the baby and for myself. I am so confident in the care the midwives give and am happy they will be the ones to take care of me pre- and post-natally even if I do require surgery during birth.

We also had a discussion about genetic testing. This is a simple blood test and an ultrasound performed at 11 weeks. The results determine possible predisposition to certain birth defects such as downs syndrome. The results can give a false reading. It may come back negative and you still have a baby with "problems" OR it could be a positive in which case they want you to continue with further genetic counselling and diagnostic testing such as CVS or amniocentesis. Here's my opinion on the matter: I advised the midwife that I would NOT be undergoing genetic testing. My reasons? First of all, the test can be false meaning a whole lot of stress if you get a positive result. But most of all, EVEN IF I DID get a positive result I absolutely refuse to have further invasive testing. The most popular seems to be the amnio (which takes a sample of the amniotic fluid surrounding the baby). In my research, I have found that there is between a 0.5 - 1% chance of having a miscarriage after this procedure, a risk I would not be willing to take. Thirdly, let's just say I did have the amnio and it WAS determined that our baby had some sort of "defect" (there is a possibility that these results could still be wrong, by the way, it happened to a friends friend causing her much unnecessary stress), the next question presented to me would be "would you like to abort?" and the answer to this would be an adamant NEGATIVE. And therefore, I do not believe this is the right route for me and will not even being the process of genetic testing. I will take my chances and pray that God chooses to give me a healthy and happy baby. And if not, then I pray He gives us the strength as a family to cope.

In the way of general ultrasounds, I will have one at about 18 weeks. If all is well, this would probably be my one and only ultrasound (not counting the one I had at 6 weeks during my trip to the hospital). Jamie and I have discussed finding out the sex but I really don't want to know at all. It feels like I'd be ruining the surprise. Jamie, on the other hand, is a bit of a nosy-boots so this decision may still be open to some discussion.

And how I am feeling? Physically, I'm pretty good although I have a cold right now. Just had my first pregnancy migraine, haven't had one for a while so I hope this is the last one for long while. Emotionally, (I talked to Christa about this yesterday) I'm feeling very unattractive. My skin and hair always feels oily, I'm breaking out like CRAZY, I'm too tired to care about actually doing my hair so it's ALWAYS up in a twist or a granny bun or a ponytail or a knot of some sort. And I guess I should just suck it up cause I hear that in a couple more months I'll be feeling VERY frustrated with the fact that I'm too big to fit into my regular clothes but will feel too ridiculous to wear maternity clothes since I won't really be showing enough for people to really tell I'm pregnant. This could be quite a rollercoaster ride.

But in all seriousness, despite the doctor visits and the worries over my weird uterus, despite the breakouts and the tiredness, the headaches, or whatever....I am lucky, what I am going through is NOTHING compared to many women and I feel SO VERY BLESSED. I am blessed to have a wonderfully supportive husband as well as family and friends, I am blessed to have gotten pregnant quickly, I am blessed to be in a good health, I am blessed to live in a country where prenatal care is so readily available, I am blessed to feel the changes going on in my body as a new life is growing. I am blessed! God is good!

Monday, August 21, 2006

Nothing but Grapes and Sunshine

Ok, so I know it's probably really cruel to tease my husband. But in my defense, he is the worse (well, maybe second to Chris Samms) for teasing people about stuff. Therefore, making fun has become an integral part of our relationship as shown in the following example:

We are watching T.V.
The commercial for Sunmaid Raisins comes on.
Sunmaid's current slogan is "Nothing but Grapes and Sunshine".
Jamie: "I didn't know raisins were grapes"
Me (with the smirky dumbfounded look on my face): "What do you mean you didn't know raisins were grapes?"
Jamie: "I didn't know raisins were made from grapes"
Me: Uh yeah (a.k.a *Duh*)...raisins are just shriveled and dried up grapes...like the slogan says.
Me Again: Laughing "Where did you think raisins came from?"
Jamie: I dunno, I just thought raisins were raisins.
Me: But where did you think they came from? Like did you think they grew on a tree? he he he
Jamie: Stop it, you're not very nice.
Me: Seriously tho (but I'm still laughing), "Did you think they were like a nut of some sort?"
Jamie: I thought maybe they grew on a bush.
Me: Like a raspberry bush? Instead, it's a raisin bush? HA HA!!! I'm writing about this in my blog.
Jamie: NOoooo, that's not fair!
Me: Oh, but I just can't help it, it's so funny!
And then we're both laughing, me hysterically, him trying to pretend he's upset and holding back a grin.
So here I am....making fun of something completely innocent that any of us could have easily taken for granted. Unless you're a geek like me you probably don't question things like "what are raisins?" or "What is tapioca?" (for which I've previously written a blog, you can read the entry here). And now you know the answer to both.
Sorry babe, but you'd do the same to me...*smile*...and it's not so bad, I'm sure you're not the only one.

Wednesday, August 16, 2006

Friends Never Say Goodbye

And yet here we are this past Saturday night saying Goodbye once again to Joann and Chris as they continue their career adventures to New Jersey.

Congrats DR. CHRIS WARREN, by the way, on the PhD AND on the new job position. SO absolutely proud of you!

The move they are making is a great one. A big step on the way to a promising future. Even though New Jersey isn't too far away and even though I don't currently see them A LOT it still feels like I'm really missing them already.

Here's a picture of the 3 of us girls - Myself, Vicki, and Joann on the fabulously comfy Ikea couch.














Joann and Chris,
Thanks so much for the great time on Saturday night - yummy snacks and yummy dinner, great conversation and lots of laughs!
Here's wishing you a safe vacation back home in September, a productive move to your new apartment in New Jersey, and all the success life could possibly bring. You guys are awesome and you deserve every happiness. Love you, miss you already! And I really hope Jamie and I can visit you in the near future when you get settled away in your new home.

Friday, August 11, 2006

BABY!



Congrats!! to Jason and Steph on the birth of their son, Tristan Jason, born at 9:13am today weighing in at 6lbs 1.5 oz.

Stephy called Christa about 5am this morning to say she was going to the hospital cause she "thought" she was in labour. lol....4 Hours later, she has the baby! I'm absolutely flabbergasted at how quick that was (I can only wish!). What a lucky girl!

I wish them all the best with the new addition and many joyful days ahead.

I just can't wait to meet Tristan!