Thursday, September 29, 2011

81 Years Young

Nan celebrated her 81st Birthday on September 23rd. Last year, the family had planned to have a big shin-dig but, unfortunately, Nan ended up in the hospital. So that didn't go as planned.

Last Saturday night everyone got together at Nan's house for a surprise get-together and some yummy food. Nan's house was super full - it's a tiny house - and it was just like when I was a kid and everyone would go there for supper on Sunday evening. Great Memories.

Nan was extrememly happy to have her "crowd" all around her. With her having so many health problems lately and yet some more bad news I received yesterday, I'm happy to try and spend time with her.

Sarah, Charlotte, and I with Nan White on Saturday night. Glad you had a great birthday, Nan!

Monday, September 26, 2011

Fun Free Fall Printables

If you have a preschooler, like me, who desperately wants to go to school and loves to do "school-work" then you'll love this free printable from Homeschool Creations.

Click here for the Fall inspired worksheets - about 21 pages in total and enough to keep my 4 year old occupied for a couple of hours of quiet time at the dining room table. Hip Hip Hooray for quiet time!

There's also a link for a Kindergarten-aged printable. Some of these activities are great for Sarah too!

Now if only I could find something that would keep Charlotte occupied for that long. She's definitely in the "occupied for 5 minutes max" (approximately the time it takes her to empty her toy box and leave the contents all over the floor) age-range.

Happy Fall!

Sunday, September 25, 2011

Angels Among Us

It wasn't until my Grandfather passed away. Up until then, I don't know that I ever really thought about it. Of course, I'd heard the story over and over again of the angels singing of Christ's birth, of the angel that rolled the stone away from Jesus' tomb. But to say that I ever really believed in their true existence in this life? No, I'd have to say I'd never thought of it until that night.

My Grandad was quite ill. He'd had a stroke several years before and now he lay in his bed on a Sunday night, broken and weary and ready to go home. On the days leading up to his death, I would visit and he would, with great frustration, point to the corner of the room and say, "Don't you see it?" and then sigh and close his eyes again in disappointment that he was the only one.

I was fascinated and frightened. But I had no doubt that I was in the presence of an angel that only my grandad's eyes could see the "beauty" of. As they did for Lazarus, I always imagine the spirit of my Grandad being carried away to heaven by angels.

I think of all this now in the wake of another death. Facebook is buzzing with "Thoughts and prayers to the family" and "Our condolences" and such things that people say when a loved one passes away.

But it's the "God needed another angel" or "She's got her angel wings now" that really truly bothers me. I don't know how this could be helpful or encouraging. First of all, God needs nothing. He is God, afterall. And secondly, angels are not people. People are not angels. Nor do we become angels. Angels are a separate creation made by God and for God. They guide us. They protect our children. We are not them. Thirdly, perhaps it's the popular vision of the cute little cherub with a harp that makes us want to tell others of what their loved one is now transformed into. Biblically speaking, this cannot be accurate, as most references indicate people who see angels responding by falling down on their faces in fear. That doesn't sound very cute at all.

I must apologize if you are one of the people who have used this angel reference in the past. I am certainly not targeting anyone in particular. I am just bothered by the inaccuracy of the statement. And I've read it just one too many times lately.

As the song goes, "If I die young," and they "bury me in satin", I would prefer for people to think of me as being in the presence of a loving saviour, walking hand in hand with my Grandad on the streets of Gold, and finally getting to see the angels up close, because that is one thing I want to know the secrets of, but not because I've become one.

What are your thoughts on angels? Or have you thought of it at all?

Friday, September 23, 2011

First Steps

A Mom wants to be the one waiting, with arms outstretched, as baby takes those first staggering steps.

I missed Sarah's first steps. Jamie was heading back to Ontario for work the first year we moved home, and I tagged along for the ride. Mom called to say that Sarah had started walking. She was nearly 13 months old. And I couldn't wait to get back home to see her.

As I headed back to work, I knew Charlotte would soon be walking. She was already standing alone and walking along any piece of furniture she could get her hands on. One evening when Daddy was home for supper and playing with her on the floor, she kept standing up over and over again, and taking just one little step before falling down again. So cute!! (so technically, I didn't miss her very first step...yay!)

One day last week, Marg took this video of Charlotte, arms like ballasts, taking 3 or 4 wobbly steps across the living room.
And then she gets occupied throwing her sweater ...evidently, she gets easily distracted, like her Mamma :)

I'm so glad to have the video to keep and share...Enjoy!

Monday, September 19, 2011

Welcome Baby Jenna!

My dear friend Christa (from Christa Hann photography), hubby Kristen, and big brother Jesse, welcomed a brand new addition yesterday afternoon at 12:11pm.

Christa was actually not due until October 7th but went early with Jesse and expected the same this time around. And it's worked out well because her brother is getting married on October 8th! And that was cutting it close!

Jenna Elizabeth weighed in at 7lbs 6oz and is doing very well. Her Daddy texted this morning that she is a hungry little hippo and has been eating lots.

Miss Jenna - sorry for the fuzzy photo, I copied it from facebook which was the photo Kristen texted me last night. I'm sure you'll see LOTS as soon as Christa is able to wield her camera :)
Christa will be getting out of the hospital today and is looking forward to getting settled away in her own bed in her own house.

Congratulations Christa and Kristen - you have your baby girl and I couldn't be happier for you! I only wish I was there to hold her.

Monday, September 12, 2011

Frilly and Ruffly and Pink...Oh my!

Miss Charlotte got the awesomest (sorry, I know that's not a word) most adorable birthday gift ever!

I've wanted one for months now. And then opened the gift to find this frilly pink tutu from Auntie Vanessa!!
There was a time when pink frills made me cringe but having two daughters has changed my outlook on fru-fru somewhat.

And doesn't Charlotte just look absolutely adorable?! How can you not like pink frills when you see these?

Saturday, September 10, 2011

Time, Where Did You Go?

It seems the passage of time, more specifically the swift passage of time,  has been a constant theme of my blogging and facebook statuses lately. This week, in particular, I'm not liking this swift passage of time. Last week, a year had passed since Charlotte's arrival. And that means I have to return to the real world and to my real (paying) job.

If you know me, then you know my year "off" on mat leave hasn't really been a year off. I've kept quite busy. Of course, all Mommies keep busy with two children at home but I've also been quite invested in our family business and spending as many hours as possible (sometimes spending hours that were not possible) in our store and bakery.

When I first went on maternity leave I vowed and declared I was staying at home, I was NOT (I was very adamant) working a single day, I was enjoying my time with my two children, I would not be convinced to spend time involved in things that would take me away from my year off with them.

And after about 10 days, that all went out the window...

Apparantly, I don't know how to do (or not do, in this case) all that. Perhaps I'm just fickle.

Now, here I am. The year is over. I'm completely and utterly devestated. I am filled with guilt. I had always envisioned myself as a stay-at-home Mom. I thought I would succeed at that "job" the same as I have succeeded with the rest of my endeavors. But I have not.

I have not done enough. I have not read enough books. I have not given enough hugs. I have not played enough peek-a-boo. I have not dressed enough barbies (this one is hard to regret, I am much more inclined to Tonka trucks). I have not pushed enough swings. I have not gone for enough walks to the beach. I have not coloured enough pages. I have not. I have not. I just haven't done enough.

On Monday, I will go back to work in an office by myself. I will produce invoices, fill out receipts, write proposals, develop community programs, attend meetings, answer phones and emails. Get paid. And come home to someone else (a more capable someone else, in my opinion) taking care of my children. She seems to do more than enough.

Time is a tough one. There is never enough of it.

Alexander Pope said, "For he lives twice who can at once employ, the present well, and e’en the past enjoy." That's the best I can do.