Friday, February 13, 2009

Sweet Valentine

I know I promised belly shots and I didn't forget. I just forgot that I had this batch of pictures ahead of the belly batch. So next post...really!

This has been a week of sweets and treats.
It all started with a trip to the candy boutique with huge swirly lollipops in mind. Kaitlyn and Ethan were watching 'Are we there yet, world adventure' and the kids in the show went to a candy making shop in Spain. The treat they chose was of course swirly lollipops.

We found what we came for and in the flavours and colours we wanted too. (And please do not mind my 'u's in both those words. I am Canadian, Mr. Spellcheck, that is just how we do it here)
The kids are now dancing around the living room pointing to these pictures and listening to "lollipop, lollipop, oh lolli-lollipop, ba,da, boom, boom, boom....on tape. It sounds so old and so rough, but it is so fun!

Colouring was next on our Valentine's list of things to do.
I drew up a quick doodle for the kids, whipped off a bunch of copies and then passed them out. Above is the one that Emily (my 10 yr old sister) coloured.
Then we moved on to cards. Once again doodled and then copies made and folded.
Colouring and gluing was next. 

We intended to mail these off to friends and family but the only recipient of these home made cards ended up being Dave. Ethan shoved his in an envelope and stood by the door waiting to mail it to "daddy, daddy, daddyyyyyy.."
Into the mail box by the door it went.

We did manage to get a few of the colouring (there goes Mr. Spellchecker again) sheets mailed out to little friends and have a stash left here for when little friends come to visit.
If any of you are interested in a copy I can make an downloadable copy for the next post.
I hope you all have a sweet Valentine's Day!

Thursday, February 12, 2009

The toaster tale

This is the story I have about my toaster escapade. (Some of you who follow me on twitter might remember me mentioning this)

Dave approached me with our air mile points a few weeks ago and the idea to use some of them to get an air compressor finishing nailer.
I asked whatever for.
He said to nail stuff.
I said it sounded dumb and that hammers work pretty good and went to bed.
Then the next morning I woke up and checked the compressor nailer thing out online and realized it was pretty cool and could actually do a lot of neat things.
I felt rotten.
 Then I called Dave and apologize profusely for what I had said the night before and told him he should order it.
He said he had decided we didn't really need it and was going to order a new toaster instead.

Now I felt really bad. He really had wanted the compressor thing and had done a bunch of research. 
A toaster!
Come on!
I begged him to go with what he really wanted and forget about the toaster.
What was wrong with our toaster?
Sure it was really old and the springs were a little over active.
You just had to be near by to catch your toast as it flew out or it would land on the counter or floor.
And maybe if you didn't stand by to make sure it popped when you wanted it to it would eventually spit out a charred hockey puck but hey, it was one great old toaster. 
I knew it well and it knew me.
OK, and it was starting to get a little fickle with where it decided to toast and you often had to rotate the toast or waffle halfway through so it would be browned on all sides but really, I knew how and when to do it.
Dave said he was done with the old thing and his mind was made up. He had ordered a new toaster.
After we got back from our last trip out to AB there were three UPS tags in the mail and a note to contact them to pick it up within the week if we wanted our package.
I had a pit in my stomach.
I really loved that toaster. It had been there from day one for Dave and I. It was like giving up that ancient can of broccoli soup on the top shelf. (Another story completely)

A few days later I finally took the slip and headed out to the UPS depot. I was sad, almost mourning the old toaster. I kept on trying to rationalize in my mind that the new toaster would never live up to the old one. Sure it might toast bagels and thaw things but it probably wouldn't need me to stand by like the old one. 

I needed to get a grip. Dave wanted this for us. A fresh start.
I must be happy!

I went into the depot with my slip and handed it to the guy. He looked it up on the computer then went off searching through stacks of boxes. After a while he came back and asked for the name on the account. I told him and also mentioned that it was a toaster so he knew what size to look for.
He came back with a tiny box. It had the wrong name. I told him I was pretty sure a toaster wouldn't fit in that box and sent him back looking again.
Finally he came back out with a big grin on his face.

Carrying this.

The ware house guys all broke out laughing their heads off and one remarked. "Now that is one way to get your wife to pick up your parcel, tell her you are getting her a new toaster, ha, ha, ha......"

I was relieved!
And happy, and mad.
Dave sure pulled one over on me, but I totally deserved it.
I am NEVER meddling with his tool and gadget wants again, EVER!

P.S. The other night he took me shopping and we chose a pretty new toaster together.
Oh, and I promise belly pics next post.

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Pucker up and frame it

Bored to tears and feeling so cooped up has led us to some interesting revelations.
Kaitlyn had been asking for a few days in a row to have a pink cake and a pretend birthday party. On her list was a cake for each of us and tea, we compromised and settled on two cakes and tea.
After rummaging for the food coloring and not finding it I told the kids the baking would have to wait. A trip to the store was needed. They whined and I procrastinated. The thought of bundling the kids for such a short trip did not seem fun so we sought out different options.
Not options I would now recommend unless you really like sour stuff.
We found the Kool Aid. It works for hair and play dough so I thought, why not?!
We now know why not.
We added some Kool Aid to the icing too (extreme pucker power) and the kids got to town with lemon-lime and cherry-raspberry. 
With candles lit and songs sung the party was a hit. Then we ate the cake. It really isn't that horrible but none of us made it through a whole piece. My mouth was watering and my cheeks and lips puckering. Kaitlyn decided she would rather look at the cake and Ethan was quite pleased to just eat the icing. A ton of tea was then consumed.
A+ for fun, B- for taste. Now I understand why sugar is such a crucial ingredient when mixing the drink.
Next up on things to do? When at a loss of what to choose I decided to ask Kaitlyn and Ethan what they would like to do. Kaitlyn exclaimed, "Let's frame it, just like Mr. Maker!"
Of course to frame it we needed frames and since Mr. Maker has home made frames we tackled making our own.
The final frames now hang at child's eye height above their stools.

With the kids down early Dave and I were able to do some catching up on House, How I met your mother, Scrubs and Big bang theory. I just cannot sit still and watch, I get antsy so I decided to multitask. Dave is great at this, he dozes on the sofa and watches with half and eye open. (MA(my mom-in law)---I wonder where he gets that from?)
I tried to paint and watch with half an eye on the show. I could watch a few reruns. I kinda tune out when I get into a piece. (this one is nearly done, touch ups and a few details need to be added)
It is something I just decided to do to capture memories. You know how we all keep a little box stashed somewhere with baby clothes or shoes or blankets or toys. I am terrible, I have big boxes and when I think of some of the things in them I wish I could preserve the memory in an in your face kind of way. 
This is why I love open shelves in a closet over drawers, I need to see it to know what is there.

This boot painting is step one. I hope to have a wall full of pieces like this eventually. Maybe a painting of the wisp of hair sporting that first baby bow, or a close up of an ankle with the hospital id on it. A pair of mitts or Ethan's muddy Airwalks. I am not entirely sure what direction this will take but when something jumps out at me I will put it on canvas. 
Where I will hang them I don't know either. I think we need an art overhaul here anyway so maybe the boots will go in the front hall or bathroom.
I am just going to stop now, it is  past midnight and I am starting to feel rambly, nightyo!

Sunday, February 1, 2009

Bidding farewell and life thoughts

Once again we made the trek out to Alberta. The second trip in four weeks to say our farewell to another of Dave's grandma's.

This was another woman who had lived a long life and left behind a huge, continuously growing family including 15 great, great grand children. Amazing. She was much loved and will be missed by all.

While we traveled the kids tuned into a few movies, crafted and read books while Dave and I tuned into podcast after podcast. Some were techy, some were on sports and then some where on relationships. (from focus on the family)

I don't know how many of you follow the focus on the family broadcast or podcasts but I used to tune in daily before kids. Now I just catch it once in a while  but I definitely plan to catch more.

The episodes we listened to were about conflict in marriage, divorce and the difference in marriages now compared to marriages before the tech age. The marriage of gen-X ers. (born from 1961 to the end of 1980)

I realized after listening to this that Dave and I really fall into all the stereotypical problems that gen-Xers have.  The neat thing was how they talked about dealing with the issues we face.
One thing that struck me  the most was that we should put the marriage on one level and the issues on another. Big oops for us.
Whether it is lies or failed promises or annoyances or way bigger issues we need to put them outside the marriage and deal with them as a couple. What got me was how to do this.
They suggested throwing a pillow on the floor and pretending it is the issue (what the fight is about) and then standing back as a couple and discussing and dealing with the issue. By putting ourselves outside the issue and tackling it together we are supposed to be able to conquer it better.
We'll see how this goes.
Another thing they talked about was the pain cycle. When a man does something that hurts the woman she starts off hurt and then gets angry. Then she gets resentful and bitter and then doesn't want anything to do with the guy. All because of something stupid that he has done and hasn't dealt with. This is when we are to step back and deal with the issue together. Both parties have to be willing to work on it though.
I haven't quite figured out how to do this yet, I keep cycling. I know that for the guy he goes through something similar when he is hurt too. 

I think the toughest part of dealing with our pains is sitting down and actually talking it through with our partner. Forgiving and trying to repair the relationship is painful too because we don't want to get hurt again. It is sometimes easier to keep our guard up and keep the pain of past hurts while we try to protect ourselves from future hurts. Forgiving (though not forgetting) is opening up and letting the guard down. That is almost painful in itself.

What I wish is that Dave and I could just be in puppy love again. It is not that we don't love, we have  a very deep love for each other but there are so many things that seem to affect the day to day. Schedules with the kids, meals, house cleaning, stupid other things I don't want to mention out loud that we both do and then trying to find time to be alone together seem to take such a tole.
I dream that someday I will look up into his eyes and my heart will explode like it did when we were first together. Right now it is just so tired and I know his is too. 
However we do both have the fight in us to keep things together. We both know this is a season of life and that the seasons are always changing. We remind each other of this we through pillows on the floor to discuss.
Someday ( as we sit in our creaky old rockers on the porch) I hope we can both look back and think of all the stupid stuff we dealt with while young and have a grand old laugh about it. (of course while we gave into each other's eyes with that special twinkle)