Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Lumps and Bumps

Sometimes in life we hit a bump in the road. Last week I got one.

In December I had a chest x-ray to see if I had pneumonia. I didn't. What I did have was a lump in my lungs. My family doctor reluctantly ordered a CT scan as he figured the lump was just the functioning nodule in my thyroid. Some people are tall, some people are short, I am lumpy.

The results came back to my Dr's office but he never called me in and when I called to ask about them I was told that if it was anything, they would have called me.

Umm hmmm.

Anyway, when I went in a month later for an unrelated matter I asked about the results. My Dr. said very little but he did say he would send me for a surgical consult. He seemed rather unconcerned so I was too.

I was unconcerned right up until the surgeon's office called me on a Friday (my birthday) and wanted me to come in on a Wednesday. In Canada, waiting forever is normal, so speed is bad. Plus they wanted me to bring my spouse. I think I cried for an hour.

So, we went on Wednesday and to cut a very long story short, the lump is not cancer (praise Jesus), they think it is a thymoma, but it needs to come out. Unfortunately the only way to take it out is to crack open my chest.

Yee haw.

This will necessitate a 5 day stay in the hospital, 2-4 weeks where I cannot drive and 8-12 where heavy lifting is forbidden. There are no words to describe how challenging it is going to be to live with my tactile, active sons and not pick them up or have them give me bear hugs for 2-3 months.

I am struggling a bit with this lump as it has created a bump in the road I was not anticipating. Nor am I terribly at peace with yet. I know I should be grateful that it isn't anything really serious and that I don't have eight kids or small babies and that I live in a country where I am not worried about paying for it or my insurance covering it, and I am, I really am, but I still wish I didn't have to have this done.

So your prayers and best wishes are appreciated.

Monday, March 29, 2010


So, I finally remembered to do the draw, and I used to get the numbers but I am a technical weenie and so I have no idea how to show you the screen shot from random. Anyway, the two numbers are
8- Karen C

Congrats to all of you.

I will e-mail you both and see what prints you would like.

Happy Monday

Friday, March 26, 2010

Free for You!

As promised last week, I am doing a giveaway!! I'd like to give a present to you all but I am nothing if not cheap. Even when celebrating a birthday.

In honour of now being half-way to 70 I am giving away two 8x10 prints from this site. I LOVE Dianna's photography, although I really have no idea how she finds the time to take pictures, she has seven children and the oldest is eight. Plus she home-schools. If I could mail her sleep I really would.

Anyway, I am giving away two of her prints, you get to pick which one and they can be made with or without the Scripture. My favorite is the bridge with the zinnia close-up a very tight second.

To win, just leave a comment. That's it. I'm not really into the whole "tweet for extra entries thing" mainly because I am lazy. However I do understand that some of you are over-achievers. For you over-achievers there is one way to get a second entry. Simply take a picture of yourself with purple hair and a clown nose standing in a public place (there must be large numbers of people present) holding a sign that says " I am geekier than Happy Geek". Post the picture on your blog or face-book and you, my friend, will get an extra entry.

So go see the prints, comment and then celebrate my birthday however you wish! Contest closes Sunday night.

Monday, March 22, 2010

Rocky Mountain High

I had a lovely birthday, thank-you for asking. Way Cooler was away in the states on some PhD related thing-y so a couple of months ago I decided to throw myself a party this past weekend. Can we say narcissistic anybody?

I took the boys and a beloved cousin and we escaped to the mountains overnight. Can I tell you how much I love living near the Rockies again? SO FUN. There's something magical about being in an outdoor pool surrounded by mountains so close you feel you might be able to reach out and touch them. It's even better to have your children playing in the chilly pool while you sit in the hot-tub and discuss Amy Beth's new puppy. (For all you safety types, the boys were very close, wearing life-jackets and in waist deep water.)

The boys did not know we were going and it was utterly delightful to be able to tell them we were sleeping over IN A HOTEL IN THE MOUNTAINS. For my kids, sleeping anywhere other than their beds is a never ending treat and to be sleeping in the mountains? SHEER MAGIC.

We ate our way through the weekend. It was lovely. I had finally gotten over my fear of yeast dough (narcissistic and irrational) and made PW's Cinnamon buns. They were as good as advertised although I must warn you, if you live North of the 49th parallel you will probably not be able to bring yourself to use as much butter as she recommends.

I tried, I really did, but it was almost as if the entire Heart and Stroke foundation were holding my arms back and Janet and Greta were yelling at me "Step away from the liquid death". They were still good, just not quite as buttery as they might have been. I'm sure my heart (and definitely my hips) will thank me later.

My cousin made a caramelized onion dip that is so good I may have had it for breakfast the next morning. Along with a bun or two. If I make it to 70 it will be a miracle. (At least according to the heart and stroke foundation.)

Stay tuned this week, as soon as the snafus are all ironed out, I will be having a give-away. Happy days for you!

Friday, March 19, 2010


Today is my birthday!!!!

AND I had a lovely give-away post all set up and ready to go, but we hit a technical snafu.

Tangent alert - - I LOVE the word snafu. I also like the word turnip and Chukanut. Try saying Chukanut three times fast and see if you don't feel a bit happier. If you don't then you may have issues with the grumpy. Just sayin'.

Anyway, I am celebrating my birthday today and trying not to think about the fact that I am half-way to 70. As a certain sister of mine keeps reminding me.

Not that 70 is old. NOT AT ALL. (Don't want to tick off the old people nearly 70 year olds that read this blog.

So, I off to make merry and on Monday (or so) will have a gift for you all! Or one lucky you.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Dear Hubby O Mine

Dear Way Cooler,

I know that lovely brain of yours is filled with all manners of important PhD kind of stuff. I totally understand that sometimes it is hard to remember EVERYTHING. So, since you are a visual learner here is a brief reminder of some of the equipment found in our house.

This is a couch. It is useful for sitting upon although truth be told I do prefer the floor. Because I am weird like that. However, its primary function is to provide a comfortable seating area for our guests.

This is a hanger. Isn't it pretty? Your grandma hand-covered it and gave me a bunch for a shower present. Its primary function is to hold coats and jackets in our front closet.

So, to sum up, this

Goes here

not here.


The Geek.

Monday, March 15, 2010

And Now You are Four

Dear Sprout,

Tomorrow you turn four.

That's CRAZY.

People keep telling me to enjoy these days as they go so fast. It's really a bit unnecessary as I am totally aware that 5 minutes ago you were a squalling, fussy baby and now you are this slender preschooler with a dazzling wit and killer smile.

Your zest for life blows all of us away. To you, a stranger is just a friend you haven't met yet, every object higher than you is for climbing and silence means an opportunity to share. And share and share and share some more.

This year you've amazed us with how much you have learned just by watching and trying. You knew all the letters of the alphabet and their sounds right around your third birthday and recently started to write things. Without me ever instructing you. You just got tired of watching Spud-y "do school" and you wanted to too. You spied a two wheeler at a gym time one day, climbed on and you were off. No matter that it was really too big for you, you jumped on like you were born to ride. There isn't much you can't conquer.

You love a good time. All the time. Even when being disciplined you sport your trademark grin, complete with one cocked eyebrow. Living with you is one big party.

You are mischievous, full of personality and ALL BOY.

You make our family complete.

Happy Birthday Buddy.



Friday, March 12, 2010


Thew other night I was rushing to make dinner after swimming lessons. The boys were sent upstairs to get their jammies on while I ran to my downstairs pantry** for some pasta.

Seriously, I DO know better than to leave those two unsupervised. Maybe the chlorine fumes were causing my brain to short circuit. As I was running up the stairs to check on my browning meat I heard a "thump, thump, thump". Which in this house isn't all that unusual of a sound. Because I have two VERY ACTIVE boys (one with my clumsy gene) falling down the stairs is a twice weekly experience. It is truly is a wonder that we've not yet broken any bones. And now that I have typed that, I will be posting pictures of their imminent casts next week.

Sure enough there was a sobbing boy at the bottom of my stairs. Without a stitch of clothes on. Also a more regular occurrence than the pre-child me would have deemed possible. Some days I really do feel as if I am running a nu*dist colony.

So I scooped him up, turned down the heat on the meat and headed to the couch for a cuddle. Part of me wanted to know why he was falling down the stairs wearing only socks and part of me was shouting "don't ask - you'll be sorry"

I ignored the voice. Becuase I am stupid like that.

"So buddy, what happened?"

"Spud and I were playing swords and he went to grab mine and I went down the stairs."

Warning bells were madly going off yet I continued.

"Swords? With what?"

Any guesses from those of you with boys?

Yep. The built in kind.

Which lead to me using the word pen*is for the 438th time this week and yet another talk I never once in a million year envisioned as I bought sleepers and planned out the nursery.

**Yes, I do have two pantries. Way Cooler is a we are big believers in stocking up on sales and buying in bulk. If we were stuck at home we could live for weeks on the cereal alone.

Wednesday, March 10, 2010


Today it was cold. Or colder than we've had. Cold enough to stay inside and be thankful for the beautiful weather of last week.

Plus, my oldest boy stated barking like a seal. In deference to all the germ-a-phobes out there I kept him home.

And Way Cooler works a 12 hour.

Not at all a recipe for a good day.

Yet it was. Really good.

Nothing fancy happened.

Muffins were baked, games were played, (Oh chutes and ladders how you bore the pants off of me) smoothies were swirled, and tickling was done.

At one point Sprout caught me mid-tidy and exclaimed " Mommy I really want to play Tic Tac Toe with you. That would be great."

It was.

There is something about the ordinary that comforts. Soothes. The scent of fresh-bathed boys and a clean floor can be intoxicating in all that it represents. Healthy kids. Clean water. A sturdy house.

Even Way Cooler's absence reminds me of the gift of a husband who works hard to make a difference at a job he loves.

I have been in a funk as of late (the reasons they are many, personal and really rather boring) but today was balm for a weary soul.

Sometimes ordinary is all that I really need.

Monday, March 8, 2010

To Dream, Perchance to Sleep

I'm doing something I've never done before. I escaped from the house for the afternoon and am now busy blogging in the library. I have two hours and no distractions. I'm hoping for more than 7 sentences. But we shall see. I am also really wanting a nap as I was awake for a good part of the night re-starting Voyager's systems so that I could save it from an imminent Borg attack.

Yes, I probably should stop reading Star Trek novels before I go to sleep but then it would be something else. Like my mother would be kidnapped and only I could save her. While wearing a flapper dress. Sometimes an imagination is a good thing, sometimes it is not.

In the past ten years I can count on one hand the number of times I have woken up and not been in the middle of some drama. This puzzles Way Cooler to no end as a dream is a rare occurrence for him. His biggest peeve though is that when I wake up and we've been arguing in my dreams I cannot always separate dreams from reality and have gotten mad at him on more than one occasion for something my subconscious made up.

(Please do comment if this happens to you as well, as I'd like Way Cooler to think that I am normal. Or at least headed in the direction of normal.)

This whole dreaming thing really isn't my fault, it's hereditary. One of my mom's favorite stories is the time she was awoken to my dad shouting "Cover me" and then leaping out of the bed. Unfortunately for my dad, the hay bale he was leaping over was directly in front of his dresser. The bruises lasted for weeks. He said he had a hard time falling asleep after that as the bed was shaking too hard from all the silent laughing coming from the other side of the bed.

So what about you? Dream much? What's the weirdest thing you ever dreamt about?

Friday, March 5, 2010

Spring, Cake and a Rodent or Two

It's Friday.

You know what that means!!

1. Way Cooler has a rare weekend off. While I do LOVE his job and there are many advantages to shift work, it is a real treat to have a weekend together. I do NOT have to sit alone in church this weekend. Yahooo!

2. We attend a large-ish church and I have found that when you go in and sit alone, you stay alone. People will avoid your row LIKE THE PLAGUE. I have no idea why. My solution has been to find someone else sitting alone and sit with them, but sometimes there is no one when I go in.

3. We are getting Spring a little early around here these days and the whole city seems to have a little bounce in it's step. When I pick up Spud from school people are lingering outside, rather than clutching their children and scurrying off to the warmth of their cars. It's hard to do community when it is cold.

4. Hey, did you know that if you make a bunt cake, it is not a good idea to treat it like Angel food cake and hang it upside down on a funnel? Yeah, me neither. Turns out of you do that, you will be piecing your bunt together like a puzzle and hoping the glaze covers a multitude of sins.

5. The cake is for my dad's birthday celebration and I have this overwhelming urge to stick a geranium in the middle of it. (If you haven't watched my Big Fat Greek Wedding, well you really need to. Then you will understand.)

6. I have given up chocolate for Lent. This was a very, very bad idea. Currently it is not making me any more reverent. Just cranky. I may have to work on my attitude. This will be hard without chocolate. Lent 2010 may be remembered in our family as the year that Mommy went a little bonkers.

7. My kids have discovered the joy that is Chip and Dale on Youtube. I thought I'd share the "joy." I just keep saying, well at least it is not a talking cucumber.

For more quick takes, see Jennifer at Conversion Diary!

Monday, March 1, 2010

A Brief moment of Patriotism

I was fully planning to post last night.

But then we watched the closing ceremonies.

And between laughing till I cried, (really, flying moose?) and rolling my eyes at Way Cooler's running commentary*, there really was no time.

But let me say this,

Canada Rocks.

Thanks for the party Vancouver.

*Way Cooler and I sit at VERY different points on the political spectrum. He loves nothing more than to try and push my buttons. However, we are agreed on one thing. Stephan Harper is really the world's largest Ken doll.