Thursday, October 29, 2009

Maybe Three Isn't So Bad

The other day I was holding Sprout in my arms for a little face to face chat about some behaviours that I wanted to um, modify.

When our chat was done he told me to hold out my hand. This is fairly common around here ever since Spud read The Kissing Hand in school. He told Sprout about it and Sprout really latched onto the whole concept. I am often asked to hold out my hand so that Sprout can kiss it and then proclaim, "This is my love for you."

Pleased that he was still OK with me even after our um, chat, I did. He kissed my hand and said, "this is love." I went to put him down, but a little hand gently grabbed my face and held it while he kissed my forehead. "This is love."

Then my neck, nose, cheeks, lips and shoulder. After each proclaiming, "This is love."

It is buddy. It sure is.

Monday, October 26, 2009


We've been pumpkin picking, pumpkin carving, play-landing, church going, family bonding, birthday partying, story reading, snow driving, and picture making.

My poor computer is getting dusty.

I'm discovering that's a good thing.

BUT, not everyone has let their poor blogs wither away. Here are some of my favorite reads recently.

Melissa has tickled my funnybone yet again. It's the ultimate sitter instruction letter.

Beck has been taking classic children's stories and giving them a Halloween-y twist. These are NOT meant to be read to your kids. Unless you'd like your kids to stay awake for the next six months or so. But for adult who have to read these stories a bazillion times, well, Beck's takes are SO MUCH BETTER. Scroll down to read them all.

Antique Mommy reminded me of one thing I miss about teaching. The unexpected joy from a simple assignment.

I read this a week ago on Tonggu Momma's Sunday Linkage and it still makes me shake my head a week later. I really hate judging parents before I know the whole story and have walked in their shoes, but in this case I will make an exception. I hope they've saved up for their daughter's therapy.

Happy Monday!!

Friday, October 23, 2009

7 Quick Takes Vacation Edition

1. While in Texas we went to the Texas State Fair. It was too much fun. I even almost tried the deep fried butter but upon seeing other people eating it, thought better of it and stuck to a sausage. In fact, my credit card had such a good time at the fair that it decided to stay and jumped out of my wallet in order to do so.
I discovered this the next morning when I went to pay for my purchases at Kohl's. However, some amazing soul turned in my credit card to the lost and found. So, after Way Cooler's conference let out we went to pick it up. Our arrival coincided with the ending of the OU/UT game. There are 5 million people in the Metroplex. I think every last one of them was at the fair along with the greater portion of Oklahoma. But I had my credit card, so I happily waded through the throng.

2. We flew to Texas on Areoplan points and decided to splurge and upgrade to Executive. What a ridiculously fun way to fly. There's nothing quite like munching mixed nuts and sipping herbal tea while watching a movie in a very comfy seat. It's really ruined me for the next time I have to fly economy with kids.

3. I tend not to drink alcohol, mainly because I am very, very cheap and it's rather expensive here in Canada. I cannot bring myself to pay that much for a beverage. However, it was free in Executive so I decided to try some. Turns out, I do not like wine or beer, (really, people pay money for that?) but Bailey's in hot chocolate is quite a treat. However, I think I'll stick to my Coke Zero from here on in.

4. I watched "My Sister's Keeper" on the plane. This is not something I would recommend. Unless sobbing uncontrollably amongst fifty strangers not watching the same movie is your idea of a good time. Otherwise, this one is best watched on your own.

5. You Southern women really need to help me out. I think I drank my weight in sweet tea while down there and really don't want to wait another six years to have some again. I'd forgotten how very good it is. How does one make it at home? Please help me. Please. I'm in some serious withdrawal here.

6. Early Saturday morning I was able to shop at Kohl's all by myself. Early morning shopping was one of my favorite pre-child activities and it was very enjoyable to do it again. But it got me thinking, I don't think I'd trade it for my current early Saturday morning ticklefests with two small boys. I loved the pre-kid season and I love this one now. So very different, and yet both so very good.

7. Biscuits and Gravy is THE breakfast of champions. Forever and amen.

For more Quick Takes, please visit Jennifer at Conversion Diary. Even if you don't want the quick takes, visit Jennifer anyway. Her blog is truly one of the most thought provoking out there.

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

The trip

I'm back.

It was fabulous.

Can I make a confession? I didn't really even miss my kids. Not much anyway. I knew they were having more fun than I was, and I see them all day, every single day of their lives. I've gotten enough of them over the years to tide me through a few days apart.

And I didn't even feel guilty typing that.


Anyway, I could go on and on about my trip, (and probably will in future posts) but just wanted to pop in, say hi and tell you the highlights.

It was snowing when I left. I had shoveled. They de-iced the plane. It was sunny and 28 degrees (C) when we landed. That alone made the trip absolutely perfect.

I went here. Twice. That story is worth a post ALL to itself.

I ate here. Three times in one day. That alone will reduce my life expectancy by at least six months, but it was so worth it.

I shopped here for the first time. Got me two bras. Man, those things are comfy. Worth every penny. And if you have ever spent time at this blog, you know I do not say that lightly. At all.

I had coffee with her. And her. Both of whom are the ultimate in Southern women; friendly, warm, charming and funny as all get out. Those coffees were definitely highlights of the trip.

And then I came home to the two cutest boys on the planet.

It was perfect.

Monday, October 19, 2009

Fashionably Yours

Recently I have been downtown for several medical appointments. Both times I was alone, (Praise Jesus) which necessitated me getting there early so I could drink an Iced Capp and people watch, which to me is much better than TV. Or almost anything.

I actually didn't get there early just to goof off but because I am physically incapable of being late. For anything. Seriously, I am certain I will go up in flames if I am not at least five minutes early. Since I have no desire to leave my kids without a mother I always give myself plenty o' time to arrive at my destination.

While people watching I made some general observations about fashion. Now I must admit, this is a little bold, seeing as how I never pay more than ten dollars for any piece of clothing I own and happily wear hand-me downs from a 60 year old, but it is my blog. I can be as bold as I want.

1. EVERY single male between the ages of 20-40 who works downtown wears a dark suit with a blue shirt and a tie that had at least one pastel colour on it. EVERY SINGLE ONE. Usually I am a sucker for a guy in suit, but this, it was just a bit frightening. It was like walking into a factory of little pin-striped worker boys.

2. Short women should NOT wear a maxi dress. EVER. Unless the wearer likes to look like a five year old wearing mommy's clothes, in which case, carry on.

3. Women who haven't seen the inside of a gym in at least ten years and have a fondness for fried chicken should not wear high waisted pants.

4. NO ONE should wear generic flip-flops with a business suit. Man or woman. And yes, I saw examples of both. It was almost painful to look at.

5. Just because one wear an expensive suit and drink a fancy latte does not give one the right to
butt in line in front of the housewife at the LRT pay station.

OK, it's not a fashion observation per se, but it was ugly.

Just in case you were wondering, the medical appointments were about nothing serious, just the reoccurring drama of the lumpy thyroid. It's still lumpy, it is not cancerous and some glorious day I may develop hyperthyroidism. Never in my life have I wanted a condition so badly. Why? If I have hyperthyroidism I lose weight. WITHOUT DOING ANYTHING. Yee haw. Yes, there is the whole racing heart, cold limbs, messed up bowel stuff to worry about, but hey I'll be thin. What's not to love?

Thursday, October 15, 2009

A Canadian Geek's Guide to Texas

As I've mentioned, I have an upcoming trip to Texas. It has got me thinking about our move there. Things were a bit different in Texas than up here, but nobody told me that. Consequently I made a bit of a turkey of myself on more than one occasion. I don't want that to happen to anyone else, so as a service to you, I am offering a Geek's guide for Canadians living in Texas.

You're welcome.

1. When people say to put something up, they mean to put it away. This can be confusing if someone tells you to put it up down there, but I'm sure you'll catch on quickly. Or at least faster than I did.

2. If someone offers you tea, it will be in a glass with ice cubes. And if you are lucky it will have enough sugar in it that you could stand a spoon up in it. If you want tea as we know it, you have to ask for hot tea. But don't. Have the tea in a glass. It will make you swear off Goodhost forever. I plan to drink my weight in sweet tea while we are there.

3. If you go to someones house do not take off your shoes. Yes, I know it is weird, and yes they do spend a fortune in steam-cleaning, but if you do take off your shoes, like say for your first time at care group, everyone will look at you weirdly and talk about you. Not that I speak from experience or anything.

4. If you are ever in a group of seminary wives, do not ask who Beth Moore is. Even if you don't know. Go google her. Asking that kind of a question can cause a collective gasp that will literally suck the oxygen right out of the room. Also, you may get on a prayer list or two.

5. No one knows what a washroom is. Bathroom, yes, washroom, well, more staring.

6. Chik-fil-a is closed on Sunday. But make sure you go every other day of the week. I honestly believe that a Chick-fil-a sandwich is the reason God made poultry.

7. They do not sell Smarties in the USA. At least not Smarties as we know them. Instead of the lovely bits of candy covered chocolate that we know and love, they are those nasty rolls of compressed sugar that everyone trades away at Halloween.

8. Do not go to the state Fair on the day of the OU vs Texas game. If you do go, wear orange. Do not, for any reason wear burgundy. THIS IS VERY VERY IMPORTANT. I do not speak from experience on this one, well, we were at the fair on game day, but we were appropriately attired so we did not get rolled, but I can see how it might happen.

9. Pecan is pronounced pa-cahn, not pee-can. As I heard many many times, (many many) a pee can is something you keep under the bed. Good thing that joke never got old. Ahem.

These are just a few tips to make your first week or so a bit more pleasant than mine. Coming next, "the Joy of the Coupon."

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Post originally published November 7 2007.

Well, I found myself grumbling a lot today about the advent of winter. It's just not my favorite season. However, I have also had the indisputable privilege of listening to or being around the umpteenth showing of Madame Blueberry. As a result I have "A Thankful Heart is a Happy Heart" running through my head over and over and over again. At some point I have to pay attention.

So, because I could use this whole happy heart thing, and not the grouchy mommy who appears at our house on an all-too-frequent basis I have been thinking of the top ten reasons I am thankful for winter and I will share them with you.

10. No more mosquitoes. This is especially good because Spud has this compulsive need to pick at his bites until they bleed. Over and over again. Oh, and family members, you don't need to comment and sarcastically ask where he got that from, I know I did it too, but I kinda wanted him to inherit my winning smile and my killer wit, not the weird, compulsive need to pick at anything abnormal on his skin.

9. My deck and my garage can now double as an extra freezer and fridge.

8. I no longer have to sit on the bus and wonder if that lady is wearing a bikini top or if she is just wearing her bra. And nothing else on top. On the bus. In front of my kids. But then I realize that they probably don't make purple satin bikinis with lace.

7. I no longer have to wonder what would possess someone to wear just a bra and cut-offs on the bus. In front of my kids.

6. Wintry days are perfect for cuddling up in front of a fire with a good book and a cup of hot chocolate. Unfortunately Sprout would make for the fire like a moth to a flame, knocking my hot chocolate over onto my book on his way. But winter days are still good for thinking about a fire, with a book and hot chocolate while I help my kids paint with shaving cream.

5. Snow is pretty. So are flowers, I miss flowers

4. The steady stream of unwanted door to door solicitation pretty much dries up in the winter. The only ones brave enough are the missionaries (of all faiths) and I have sympathy for them. I might even give them a cup of coffee. But it'll depend on how well this whole happy heart thing holds up.

3. Way Cooler no longer has to mow the lawn giving him more time to watch hockey play with his kids.

2. Tobogganing. Because there is nothing like careening down an icy hill on a thin piece of plastic (with no steering) in -20 degree weather to say, I'm a crazy Canadian.

1. And the number one good thing about winter, it only lasts for 4-5 months!

Sunday, October 11, 2009

Happy Thanksgiving Canadian Style

Post originally published October 12th 2008.

Monday is Thanksgiving here in Canada. For my American readers, there are a few differences between the two holidays. Here are the observations of a geek whose lived on both sides of the border.

1. It's colder here, thus harvest ends earlier, so we are thankful earlier. At least that's the official explanation. I think the real reason is that we get being thankful out of the way before winter hits and we turn into a nation of whiners.

2. It's not quite the same extended celebration. It is a more low key holiday than it's American counterpart.

3. No good sales the day after. Oh Black Friday, how I miss you.

4. No pilgrims.Other than that, pretty much the same. Including numerous pre-school projects involving turkeys and children dictating what they are thankful for. When I went to pick up Spud's artwork I noticed a group of moms gathered around the various turkeys and they were snickering a bit. Most of the lists were pretty sweet. Kids were thankful for family, friends, food, pets etc. Then I looked at Spud's turkey and I began to understand the snickers.

Spud is thankful for:
1. Larry Boy
2. Movies
3. Cowie.

Cowie? What the heck is a cowie? So I asked Spud.

Turns out Cowie a small stuffed cow he got in a Happy Meal once.So Spud, let me get this straight. I threw up for nine months straight while carrying a nine lb breech baby, have a four inch scar for the rest of my life, spent four months calming a colicky baby, changed 6000 diapers or so and gave up sleep for the first year of your life and you are thankful for a 14 cent toy given to you by a soul-less corporation in order to further hook you on it's trans-fat laden crack?

Alrighty then.

So I tried another tactic,"Spud, I'm thankful for you.""

OK Mommy. Can I watch a movie now?"

Happy Thanksgiving to me.

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

I'm Rather Hesitant to Stick a Title Here

Hey there.

Is it just me or is this blog getting rather dusty?

I am very hesitant to classify what I do on the blog as "writing" but I am having a bout of writer's block. It HAS been busy around here, but when I do get a chance to sit and blog, I stare and stare at the computer screen. Or I type stuff that makes me want to hang my head and cry.

The other day I had 30 minutes free just to blog. I got down the following in that time.

Two weeks ago it was plus thirty. It was amazing. Today it is topping out at 1 and is currently snowing. Which is the opposite of amazing.

The exact opposite.

Yep. It took me half an hour to write five pitiful sentences about the weather.

Yee haw.

So, if you notice some re-runs in the next week or so, I'm just trying to keep this blog from becoming the weather network.

I'll be back.

I hope.

Monday, October 5, 2009

Calling all Southern Belles

At some point this fall (how's that for vague) I am going back to Texas for a few days. Way Cooler has to attend a conference of homileticians and I am tagging along thanks to Aeroplan points.

While he is at the conference I am on a personal quest to eat my way across the Metroplex.

Yes, my weekend doesn't sound quite as fun as Way Cooler's but I'll just have to deal with it.

One of my favorite things in Texas was Southern food. I mainly ate southern cooking at potlucks and Luby but that was enough to give me a deep and abiding love for soul food and everything Southern fried.

So my Southern friends, where is the best place to find the following?:
Biscuits and gravy
Peach cobbler
Green beans cooked with bacon (which is the way God intended for them to be cooked)
Sweet tea
Chicken fried steak
squash casserole

I think we have the BBQ situation under control, our first stop after getting off the plane will be Cousins. We plan to eat until they roll us out at closing time. But for the rest, help a Canadian out. Where do you get the good stuff?