Sunday, July 25

Fun, food, friends and fancy technology.

  *****DISCLAMER, possibly disturbing material on this post..... giggle......********

This has been a wonderful weekend,
Next weekend will be Drew’s and my 11 year anniversary, and because of some scheduling conflicts we decided to celebrate this weekend.
Friday we were able to go to dinner and to Capital Ex (aka carni hell) with some dear friends of ours and had so much fun. We ate, went on rides and laughed until we cried at Chip doing this: (BTW he is 6'7" and was such a good sport about this!)

Then Saturday Drew’s parents took the children and we spent the night in the city... eating at the Taste of Edmonton, walking around, listening to music and talking.

It was relaxing and enjoyable to have time together; it reminded me of why we got married in the first place. I love the feeling of being so very comfortable with someone.

The food these last 2 days has been amazing! I have eaten: Alligator, muscles, gumbo, red snapper, chicken tika, stuffed mushrooms, cooked almonds, homemade lemonade,
Nachos (with everything), leprechaun pie, eggs Benedict, chocolate dipped strawberries, mini donuts, deep fried wontons w/ shrimp and cream cheese, steak bites, bacon wrapped scallops, apple crisp w/ caramel sauce, perogys, mini burgers, ginger beef, Pad Thai, I sound as full as I feel?!?!

This morning when we were getting ready to leave the hotel (Drew was in the shower) I went to look on Drew’s iPhone to check my e-mail and up popped a message (an automatic reminder) that there was 3 days left until Joelle gets her, ahem, “monthly gift”.


I was a little stunned, not sure what I thought about this at first, so I went and asked him what this was. He said, well.. it reminds me when you, you know???

I know this might sound super retarded, but I was very flattered. I was flattered because he has taken the time to program into his calendar the days I will more than likely lose my mind and he will not be surprised when it happens.

He knows (because he found an iPhone program that warns him) that when he gets home after work I might be grumpy and dinner might not be made, or more realistically, when he gets home I will be curled up crying because the laundry feels like a metaphor for my life.

He has a pre-emptor on his phone that says “in three more days you might want to bring home flowers, and be sure to tell your wife how beautiful she is to you” even though she hasn’t showered all day.

I love that a little electronic device tells my husband that in 2 days I will have nothing in my closet that fits or looks nice. And that before I even get out of bed you might want to go get me a cocktail of Midol and juice to start the day.

What I find so impressive about this level of technology is that most months it’s still a surprise to me when I go bonkers, but not to my man... he has it programmed in his phone.

So he has learned a thing or two in 11 years. Still doesn’t put clothes in the laundry basket, or know what day the garbage gets picked up, but he knows me... and that is way better.


Daily gratitudes:

1-My mother and father in law (Dick and Diane)... you are so wonderful to me! Thank you for letting us have the pretty car this weekend!
2-I am grateful stomachs expand and not just blow up. That would have been embarrassing but not quite as embarrassing as the guy in the mesh shirt that I saw at the Taste of Edmonton... shudder!
3-The store Winners, I picked up some indoor shoes for the boys for school (ugh, back to school shopping already) that I think might fare better. They can’t be worse.

Friday, July 23

My butt hurts!

I woke up this morning VERY VERY sore. My physio guy had me do hockey lunges yesterday and this morning my body was in total revolt. 
I could hardly sit down to go to the bathroom. (and for those people who have worked out with me know,  I seldom get stiff) until hockey lunges.

They were so bad, I had to go to physio again (without an appointment) to ask how to stretch this problem area out, because none of the traditional stretches I know would work. 
PG just laughed at me, I almost swore. He showed me a stretch and thank heaven it worked. ugh...

While we were walking out of the physio place a woman drove rather close to me and the children, I had to stop walking and put my arm out in front of the children so they would not get clipped by her car/mirror I don't even think she saw us. 
she pulled into her parking spot and turned off her engine and started to dig through her purse. Our truck just happened to be parked close to where she stopped so we had to walk past her car. 

My Seth (being more outgoing like me) walks over to her car, knocks on her window (scaring her) and says Hey lady WATCH OUT!  I don't think she had any idea what he said (his speech is still rough to some people, but I knew what he said.

I just smiled, and we kept walking

ooh ya

1-I am grateful for fries supreme, they saved my bacon today.
2-I am grateful its date night tonight.
3-I am grateful for Drew who allows me the opportunity to stay home with our babies, they are very entertaining to me. And I do know how lucky I am, because I know there are lots of moms who can't stay home and want to. 


Thursday, July 22

The only thing I don't miss

I have been home now for 2 and a half days from Chase BC and my legs are finally not itchy anymore.
In the Shushwap when you swim on the beach where the water is shallow, there is a tiny creature in/on the water called a duck mite. A duck mite is a menacing little creature that can bring even a grown man to the brink of complete madness. The duck mite bites your skin and it causes a mosquito like lump which then grows to a welt the size of your thumb and itches like crazy.
Depending on your skin, it also causes the bite to bruise, which looks horrible (and which is what happened to me).
We tried everything while we were there... sun tan lotion before going in the water, washing with zest soap, washing with mouthwash after, Calomine lotion, rubbing alcohol everything. And none of it worked!
It has taken until now for the itching to subside.  This is the ONLY thing about Chase that I do not miss.  To give you a little look see as to what I'm talking about, these are my Dad's legs after the first day of the duck mite attack:

My dad has the ugliest legs and feet in the world!  I feel that duck mite bites add a little, tiny improvement.
On an unrelated note, I did day 3 of hot yoga class tonight.  And I finally understand what the big deal is about Lululemon clothes; they are not intended for 10 year old girls... they are intended for sweating out 8 litres of water in an hour.  And when you sweat out these 8 litres of water (if you've never done a hot yoga class I'll prepare you) here is what happens... there is a steady stream of sweat off your elbows onto your mat which is why you have to bring a towel to cover your mat.  The sweat will drip into your nose when you are doing certain upside down positions as well as into your ears.  Your eyeballs will burn (pretty much constantly) because of the pools of sweat going into them and your scalp will itch like a duck mite attack.  And can you even believe that I still love it?  

My three gratitudes today are:
  1. Physio guy made me do hockey lunges this morning - which is when he added weight to my ankles, you lift your leg up and lunge outwards at a 45 degree angle and then touch your other legs knee to the ground.  And he made me do this on the front lawn of the physio building for everyone to watch me.  And then he forgot about me and laughed about it!  Why am I grateful for this you ask?  Because I'm writing that I really liked it so he won't be offended that I say bad things about him on my blog and he'll be nicer to me next time and not punish me with these hellish exercises.  
  2. I am very thankful that my hot yoga class tonight was only 26 degrees instead of the 42 that it was yesterday night.  
  3. My husbands new deodorant smells really good.

Wednesday, July 21

My pursuit for balance.

Like I had said before, my new goal is to find balance.

I am not exactly sure what happened to my balance, it might have slipped out of my pocket when I was out one day, or perhaps I left it out and someone stole it?  I am not sure where it has gone, but I do not feel “balanced” at all. I really have no idea what that even means, but I will find it again!

So while we were driving home from BC I told Drew I wanted to start Yoga again. I really love doing yoga with my brother Dawson (I am very envious of anyone in the Calgary area who could go to one of his classes, he is fantastic).  I have yet to find an instructor as good as Dawson, but a new studio opened up in my area and I went to a class last night.Class 1 of my 30 classes in a row (everyday except Sundays)

It was a hot yoga class and it was 90 minutes long, the room is kept at a brisk 38 Degrees, it was like shoving my body in the oven and then working out. It felt amazing and when it was over I was drenched, DRENCHED! I have never EVER been so sweaty after working out. The studio requires silence during the class, or I would have taken pictures. I could have easily wrung out my clothes, I was gross, but felt good. So this will be my new thing at night.

 I will also begin my own mini gratitude journal, where I will find 3 things a day I am grateful for. My friend does this on her blog, I think it’s a good practice (to be grateful).

So with that,

  1. I am grateful for my health, as hit and miss as it is lately, It could be worse.
  2. I am really grateful for true and loving friends
  3. I am grateful for my washing machine and dryer. On our way home from BC we stopped at 3 valley gap ghost town, it is a museum town and it was horrible for me to see not only what those poor woman had to wear, but what they had to do every day....there are some really amazing things that accompany that humble and simple time, but laundry was not one of them (that and menstruating...ugh what a horrible thing to do back then)


Best parts.

Sigh....I am home, and doing mounds and mounds of laundry....bigger sigh...

Ethan is walking around telling me how bored he is, and how much he wishes he was back in BC
I wish we were on Grandpas boat, I wish we could play on the beach, I wish we could go tubing again....
Surprise Ethan, I wish I was still there too.

Like always, I felt a little emotional on the drive home. I could feel my old compadres anxiety, and stress waiting for me at the Alberta border. I wish they would go on a long vacation themselves and get lost while trying to return home, but alas, they were there waiting for me. They didn’t even care to hear about the wonderful time I had just had, they are very selfish that way, they just pick up  where they left off...making me feel awful. Once I crossed over the border they resumed their positions on my shoulders and back, they could at least eat a salad, or go on a diet.

I really love it in Chase, and it always amazes me how much this little town feels like home.
I feel the most at peace with the mountains, and trees, and water, ooh how I love the water.

I was surrounded with all my cousins too, aunts, uncles, mom, dad, brother, and sister-in-law and wonderful friends.I had such a nice time. Here are a few of the best parts.

Kelsey and Dave. Honestly could she be any more beautiful?

I loved the decorations! It was so fun and classy. The colors were amazing.

My cousins.
My cousins are the most gorgeous things in the world!

After the wedding (the next day) we were back on the lake, where we all love to be!

My dad actually drove the boat so fast it blew my boys hair into these little 80's dues.
Nora loving life.
Our little piece of heaven
We might not have it all together, but together we have it all!


Saturday, July 17

I'm in heaven!

I love this place!  I don't mean to rub it in to everybody who is still stuck at home doing the mundane blah blah blah... Mine and Drew's goals for this trip was to find balance.  So my parents let us have a night off and we went off to dinner!  It was one of the nicest dinners I've ever had!  We were at Quaaout Resort just outside of Chase, BC. It is a beautiful reservation that has the best golf, the most beautiful beaches and the most fan-frickintastic restaurant I've eaten at in years.  

We were served Bannock to begin with (Amazing)...

My entree... New York tip's with caramelized mushrooms and onions, Risotto and veggies.  

Of course, with a side order of a 1/2 pound of Crab legs!

In my defense, yes this is enough food to feed my entire family.  But if you know my mom and how psychotic she is with Weight Watchers, all I have eaten for the past two days is lettuce, rice crackers and water so I needed some type of substance before I withered away... OK maybe that's an exaggeration.  But it was worth every calorie I ingested.

Tomorrow is my cousins wedding; and I assure you with the collection of my family personalities I will have enough stories to post for weeks to come.  


Friday, July 16

Departing on a family vacation; a comedy of errors.

Sigh...we are here... this was one of the longest days of my life.
I thought I had done a lot of the "getting ready" the day before we left, satisfied that Drew would only need to throw things into the truck and we would be able to just zoom off...pft..

Wednesday morning started like every morning, 7:30 the kids are up and are very excited. They love BC and are ready to go.
We get up and get showered, Drew loads everything in to the truck and we are ready to head out the door by 9 am..
We both agree that we are not going to make breakfast, so we will just get breakfast sandwiches for the road.
We drive to subway, Drew goes in and I realise I need to get a Drink. I get out, walk across the street to Safeway, get my warm milk and walk back to the truck.
I go into Subway to get the keys from Drew and I open the truck, and remember I was going to pick up juice boxes and granola bars; I lock the truck again and start walking back to the Safeway.
I was half way there and realised I had the keys and Drew is going to need to get back into the truck with breakfast.
I walk back and give him the keys. I turn around and go back to Safeway, get juice boxes and granola bars and Drew meets me on my way out.
TA DA, we are off.....

Ooh crap I forgot my wedding ring in my room, Honey? Can we turn back to the house,
Got my ring, got back in the truck, head to the library to return our over due books
Down to the end of the street,
We forgot pillows,
Turn around, got the pillows,
Back to the library
Drop off Books, and now we can go...
Forgot to deposit money,
back to the bank, money in.
Now we are off... its 10 am now
Everyone is eating, seems happy, listening to music.
Mom, can we watch a movie?
Sure guys,
movie #1 in , plays for a bit then skips
movie #2 in , won't play at all
movie #3 in Grrrr Drew this is not working, the DVD is broken.
We are now in Red Deer which is only an hour and a half drive so far.
We both agree that we are NOT making a 12 hour drive without a DVD player
We go to Costco to find a new portable DVD player... nothing there
We decide to go to Best buy, much better there, we found two good players and a few movies...
we are back in the truck. Everyone loaded in and.....
Mom I am hungry, is it time for lunch?
Sigh...Sure guys....We get lunch, and gas, and Drew has the DVD players mounted...

1:30!!!! I am not even joking

We are finally off! We drive about 20 minutes.
Mom, I have to pee..

Of course you do... we make 3 pee stops before 3 pm..

A very LONG day but we do make it, at last, 9pm.

Worth every headache.

Wish you were here ;)


Tuesday, July 13

Double Agent

Today was nuts. It was really cold (12 Degrees) and raining. What is even crazier is that we went to swimming lessons outside in it.

True Albertans! We only get 2 maybe 3 months of “summer” and we will not waste one day of it!

This afternoon I was packing up everything to get ready for our summer vacation in Beautiful British Columbia when the boys were playing downstairs.

Gabe and Ethan came barrelling up the stairs to me, obviously very very excited.

Mom, mom we found this down stairs!  (it was one of mine or Drew’s old Uniform jackets)

Look what it says mom, what does it mean? (It had EMS across the back)

I said, It means Emergency Medical Services (confused).

Still unbelievably excited, Gabe and Ethan are hanging on everything I say with bugged out eyes... and what does that mean mom??

It just means that we use to work on the ambulance and help people (still confused).

Devastated, heads hung, and turning to walk away from me Gabe says “guess that means that Dad is not a double agent then huh?”

I chuckled.


Monday, July 12

Did somebody say "Plastic Surgery"?

This morning when I woke up I rolled over and turned on my radio, I love listening to music and I find it a nice way to wake up. It is like a buffer before my craziness begins.
This morning on the radio the two DJ’s were talking about plastic surgery, more specifically breast reductions and why some people feel it’s a good idea and why some don’t.
If anyone knows me I clearly am pro plastic surgery because a few years ago I underwent a breast reduction myself.

Now to some this is a sensitive topic, I do not find it a big deal to talk about but I clearly am aware that I am unusual....

The reason I am writing about this is because one of the DJ’s made the comment that she felt that a large percentage of women get it done because women “want what they don’t have”
Hearing that actually made me sit up in bed and call in to the radio station to talk with her about this.

Want what you can’t have?...She actually said “It’s like curly hair, you want it when you have straight hair??”

To this I responded “it is not at all like curly hair... curly hair does not weigh 10 extra pounds (and that is the amount I had taken off)”, yup I had it done because I want what I can’t have, a few things I want are:

-To no longer have grand canyon size grooves in my shoulders from the weight of these bad boys

-To be able to wear clothes with actual buttons, and to not have to buy those clothes 3 sizes bigger then I actually am just to fit over these things

-One of the main things I would like to have is a conversation with a man (and some women) where they look in my eyes and talk to me.

-I really wanted to not have a sore neck and back.

-I would love to own a bathing suit, as selfish as that is.

-I really wanted to golf, to be able to hold a golf club and actually swing without having 10 pounds of mass between my arms.

-Would love to walk upright, that is a joke, but I definitely hunch

-I would love more than anything to not spend $230 per bra and them only last 2-3 months.

And last I really wish It did not look in this picture like my friends mom has 3 heads

I am glad I got it done!!!


And for your viewing pleasure... my favorite SNL skit of all time!

Sunday, July 11

Kids Kids Kids

I am the primary President at our church; it’s my latest gig and I have been doing this for 15 months now.

What that means (for those who don't know) is that I voluntarily coordinate the Sunday School for children ages 18 months to 11 years old.  I organize the teachers for the classes, and my Councillors (assistants) and I plan activities.  It sounds worse than it really is... most days.  Some days it really is that bad.

There are about 80 kids (depending on the Sunday), and about 20 staff (teachers) .  Most days are fairly stressful, but I enjoy it and I appreciate the learning.

Because of the nature of the calling (again it’s all voluntary, I don’t get paid a cent) I am interacting with children A LOT, and with children comes things children say.

So I thought it would be fun to share with you a few of the interactions I have had recently and  over the past 15 months.

Today one of my teachers came up to me to inform me that a little girl in her class had gotten into a bit of trouble for inappropriate behavior.  I asked what had happened and she told me the little one had been farting on all of the other children while she was trying to teach... She was not impressed but I snickered.

My husband Drew subbed for a different class today and while teaching the children about being good examples a little girl said to him, ”my mom and dad yell at each other a lot, they probably will get divorced, they are not good examples”.  

A few months ago, sometime after I had broken my ankle, a little girl was not happy about being in Primary, so when I asked what I could do to help her, she wound up and booted me in my broken ankle and said to me with a very angry voice and a horrible scowl on her face “I am not very happy with you today!”

The same little girl once grabbed the microphone during our little class and YELLED into it “you cannot make me be good, I will not do it!”

A little boy was giving a talk on immortality, but misspoke and kept talking about how important immorality is.  (This one made me laugh so hard I cried)

I asked once during a lesson why we were sent to Earth, and a little girl said very loudly, “so we will DIIIIIIEEEEEE!”

Children make me laugh so hard.

To end the night, we went to Drew’s parents house for dinner, and we were watching Seth eat and he started to do this..... Do not judge me, he was safe, it was an IKEA children’s knife. But fairly clever, and funny.


Saturday, July 10

Random Thoughts

I love summer. I love swimming lessons, I love the kids being home.

I do not like the hot weather at night keeping the boys up till 11-12-1 am in the morning, it makes for a not so happy next day. I am learning I need more sleep as I get older and without it I turn into a bear. Quite literally I morph into this nasty, mean creature who scares most everyone (including myself) and growls when you are too close. My children have begun staging small coups, and bombard me with Nerf bullets when I walk down the stairs in the morning, ensuring a smile and a nicer start to the day.

On a brighter note,

Physio guy has been working on my ankle and back a lot, and for this I am super grateful. Even though I think some of his antics seem mean and barbaric, I am noticing a huge improvement. I am running almost every appointment and am finding it easier and easier to run.

Some of my not so favourite things are...

Physio guy has been making me cry every visit as of late with his IMS treatments, IMS stands for jab needles repeatedly into Joelle’s muscles and do this about 20 times in her back and about 5 or 6 times in her legs. But thankfully he is funny, so we laugh through most of it.  He has also been making me lay on my side on a table with my ankle just slightly over the end of it, he wraps a strap around my foot and hangs 20 pounds of weight from it. This little ditty I call the “make you vomit technique.”

Also in my regime is being bungeed to a stable and heavy object (normally a stationary bike) and then having to walk in all four directions. Crazy but effective.
Ooh the last thing he does that I really *cough* love *cough* is when he drills his elbow into my back with his entire body weight and does this for a few minutes at a time, to which I always respond “EAT A SALAD”.
But then when I think it can’t get worse PG lets me balance on the Bosu ball and shoot hoops, and that’s when I know he still has a heart, albeit small and cold, but it’s there ;)

As much as I make fun of it all, it works, and I am doing much better. 

I think I would like to work there one day as an assistant, cleaning and helping and making people laugh.

A few weeks ago there was a little girl there and she had to do an exercise that caused her a tremendous amount of pain. This poor little creature was screaming and yelling and I could hardly handle it. I asked PG if I could go and sit with her, he hesitantly said yes so I just went over and talked to her and taught her how to breathe through the pain. No different than the labouring moms that hire me, but it worked and it made me feel good. It was nice to feel useful.  

On a completely unrelated note, I saw a woman with a full beard today.  YIKES!


Thursday, July 8

Gabers you are 7!!!!

To my little man Gabriel,

Today it is your Birthday and we sing to let you know, 
That you will be king for the day, whatever you say goes!!! (Stolen from a Barbie movie and now we sing it to the children)

                                                             Happy Birthday my boy!

I am not exactly sure how you all of a sudden became 7 seeing how you were just born last week, or at least that is how it feels.
I remember that day clearly, it was a very good day. I believe your birth foreshadowed your personality. Peaceful and calm.
Everyone who knows you loves you, and that will never change.
You are a wonderful boy, and I am thankful you came to this family.
I hope you always feel loved, I hope you learn lots and remember (you only really learn by making mistakes, so make lots!)
Get as much schooling as possible, but know street smarts matter more.
Be eager to help everyone, but never forget your Family comes first!
Always be best friends with your brothers and sister, one day Dad and I won’t be around, and you will need each other.
If you don’t like who they married-pretend to.
Wear colours, it always looks better.
Laugh so much that you cry and your face and belly hurt, it will always make you feel better.
Get a good job so you have choices.
Have and keep good friends.
And last, they were not called the 10 suggestions!

Pray daily, Work hard, trust God

Love Mom

Also I would love to give a huge shout out (or slap in the back of the head) to the woman who sold me the baby doll at the garage sale today for my daughter.
You promised this thing was broken, and you lied!! It not only cries incessantly, it also giggles like chucky and farts and burps. You have now won top spot on my “to egg” list!!

Ooh the world is right again.

Lastnight I co-hosted a baby shower at my house, it was wonderful. Drew had put up a gazebo on the deck, so we all got to sit outside and visit while eating way too many delicious creations made by many loving hands.
We laughed and talked and had a wonderful night. When most everyone left from the shower some of my girlfriends stayed and we were joined my another, and the laughs continued  until very late....Ooh how the world feels right again!


Wednesday, July 7

So much for feeling pretty!

My Father in law stopped by tonight unexpectedly to pick up some tools Drew had of his. It was so good to see him again, they have been out of town for a few weeks.
He thanked me for the nice thing I wrote about him on Father’s day.
We gave him his gift because he wasn’t here on the actual Fathers day, it was a wonderful visit.

I asked if he had seen my new blog with all of the pictures yet?  He hadn’t.

So I went over to the computer and pulled it up so he could see.

He stared at it for a bit and said, “which one is you?”

They are all me Grandpa.

Well, this one is for sure, pointing to one of the pictures, but not this one. This one can’t be you.

I am laughing really hard now because THEY ARE ALL ME.

He says, no this can’t be you this woman’s face is too skinny!


Tuesday, July 6


J is for Joelle now looks on the World Wide Web how it looked in my head!!

Thank you Drew and Caylee... I love it!


Friday, July 2

I Am Not My Body!

“I Am Not My Body” has become my new mantra, I heard it a little while ago from a woman who was in a plane crash and had her whole body burned really bad. She followed it by saying she is grateful for that trial (her plane crash) and It really moved me that this amazing woman could see such an awful and painful and I am sure sometimes embarrassing thing as good.

I have found when I am feeling exceptionally sad or mopie about my sore ankle/back, or when I am feeling unhappy with my waist line, I repeat it to myself hoping for the same gratitude she feels.
Sometimes it works better than others. 

So tonight I took the kids out to go pick up a few things and when we got home I was emptying the shopping bags from the store, I placed the box of “feminine hygiene products” on the counter and my oldest Ethan says to me pointing in my direction,

Good choice of air freshener mom

Obviously confused I looked around and said “What?” (because we don't use air fresheners in the house)

The Air freshener, good choice.

I saw where he was pointing (the box), ooh you like that kind do you?

Ya it’s the best, it does a great job, I saw it on a commercial.

Giggling to myself, ooh ya? How does it work so well?

Every time you walk by it, stuff shoots out into it and it makes things smell really nice.

Glad I got the good ones then.

Ooh how I love my boys, and how embarrassed he will be one day when he is older and reads this.

Thursday, July 1

Strong and Free!!

                                                      HAPPY CANADA DAY!!!

I love Canada, it is such a beautiful place. 

I thought for this special day I would tell you the top 10 things I love best about the True North!! (in no particular order)

10-Canadian music is amazing and diverse now, no longer are we forced to only have Ann Murry Represent us on the radio.

9-David Sazuki, Snow, clean air.

8-Canadian Film/ Television. Not only Shows that are coming out of this land, but places to film the stuff and our actors/actresses!

7-Tim Hortons

6-14 GOLD MEDALS!!!!!!

5-Cowboys and Rodeo

4-Health Care, my Dad was smashed up pretty bad, ICU for months, intubated, Blah blah blah...ZERO DOLLARS!! It has some faults, but over all we care for everyone.

3-If you wear a Maple when traveling the world, people like us.


1-We have the biggest back yard of anyone, and it's beautiful!

Have a great day!