Art Gallery Part 2

26 Mar

Last week, I posted some pictures of JP’s drawings and scribbles that adorned nearly every wall-like surface in the house. 

A few days ago, while JP was visiting Gramma, Jason decided he wanted to move all the drawings to one central location.  He thought it would be a fun way to give JP a surprise.  I, of course, did nothing, but I was ready to capture the reveal with my iPad camera.

Central location = stairwell leading up to bedrooms





The walls in this stairwell are in very rough shape.  I think this was the only part of the house that wasn’t coated with a fresh coat of paint prior to our purchase.  

Oh…no wait, the only parts of the house that were hastily given a fresh coat were the living room, kitchen, and back porch area.  But this stairwell was in the worst shape.  I really don’t think there’s any point in wasting energy on a paint job because any time you squeeze a piece of furniture up or down the stairs, half the wall seems to scrape off anyway.  

Early on, I figured the kids could just plaster this area with whatever they wanted, band posters, movie posters, actual writing on the walls, etc.  The only limitations would be whatever Jason and I deemed offensive for the walls of the home we pay for.  I think that’s fair.

So the first stairwell instalment is well underway and I just can’t get enough of JP’s happy reaction!







And after this the pictures turned into a blur.  He was up the stairs so quick and he was giggling and hugging everybody.  It was definitely one of those moments where it all seems worth it!

A Glimpse Into The Future

23 Mar

I remember being a young child in bed and calling for my mom.  Sometimes I would call her and call her only to request a sip of water when she finally arrived at my door breathless and exasperated.  

To be fair, I was on the top bunk during these memories so it probably wasn’t too safe for me to teeter down the ladder in the dark, but it was also probably a little annoying.  I assume it was annoying because I’ve experienced that same annoyance.

Now that he’s in a big boy bed, JP always needs somebody to come and tuck him in multiple times.  Or to come grab a booger from his finger.  We bought a baby monitor that has a walkie-talkie feature so he can call for us quietly and we can quickly respond.  
JP used to call for us quite a bit, but he was just as likely to get up out if bed and fling himself onto our sleeping bodies.  Since he moved to a new bedroom, he rarely calls to us or flings himself on us unless he has had a serious nightmare or unless something is really wrong.
But last night, something was wrong and I didn’t even know about it until it was over.  I heard someone walking around and I looked at the clock and realized it was only midnight.  I got out of bed to investigate and found that nobody was walking around but every light in the house was on.  I heard movement in the bedrooms and felt myself getting angry.  I assumed RJ was awake and getting dressed and I was about to flip out on him for waking up when 12:00 on the clock is obviously not 6:00am (when we tell him he is allowed to wake us up).  But then I realized Jason was in the bedroom with him, tucking him in and saying goodnight.
Turns out that RJ had another big nosebleed but he didn’t freak out at all.  He got up and went to the bathroom and held a towel to his nose without calling to anybody.  Jason heard moving around before I did and went up first.  He said he was so impressed with how RJ handled everything without alerting anybody else in the house.  In the summer, a huge nosebleed would have caused an epic meltdown with lots of tears and choking and barfing (barfing from crying too hard).  RJ calmly told Jason that he thought his nosebleed happened because we (Jason and I) keep forgetting to fill up his humidifier.  After getting cleaned up, he went back to sleep with no problems.
It was kind of a weird feeling to realize that my child is becoming more independent.  I think back to my own childhood and I know I eventually stopped calling out to my mom for simple things like a sip of water.  I was able to get out of bed and get my own water.  Or my own snack.  By the end of my childhood, I was able to get up, throw up, and go back to sleep on my own, all without waking my mom.  RJ showed us a huge glimpse into the future and it was much appreciated.
Jason and I do get annoyed at having to return again and again to the kids’ bedrooms for seemingly inconsequential reasons.  But we know it’s part of being a parent.  I can hear RJ get up and pee and go back to his bed without calling to us and last night, he tried to solve a big problem on his own without bothering us.  JP will get there too one day and my unborn baby will one day be an independent little creature too.  
Obviously, we have many years left of going back to bedrooms after we’ve already said goodnight.  And while I do not begrudge my children the reassuring presence of a caring parent, even in the middle of the night, it is nice to be reminded that we will one day sleep through the night more often than not.  One day we won’t be roused out of a deep slumber to wipe a butt or find new socks because the green ones feel weird.

Art Gallery

19 Mar

Over the past several weeks, JP has made it his mission to decorate our home. He spends large parts of each day drawing pictures and making little creations.  

To be completely honest, I’m getting a little tired of things being taped to the walls and tiny pieces of paper littering the floor, but I’ve really been enjoying the burst of creativity around here.







Thanks JP for brightening up my days!





25 Weeks

10 Mar

I saw the OBGYN for the first time two weeks ago and again this morning.  Two weeks ago my blood pressure was 160/95 so the meds were increased to three times a day.  Today my blood pressure was thankfully lower, down to 135/95, but the meds are being increased to six times a day.  Doctor says this blood pressure reading is within the realm of normal but the lower number is still pretty high and both numbers are quite a bit higher than my non-pregnant numbers.  

I’m a bit worried about increasing the dose again as I’m starting to experience side effects with taking the pill three times a day (increased nausea, exhaustion, dizziness, restless leg), but the goal is to keep this baby cooking as long as possible and to do that my blood pressure needs to stop getting higher.  

After finishing with the OBGYN, I went to the lab to do my gestational diabetes test.  So you drink 8oz of orange flavoured syrup, wait for an hour, and then see if your blood sugar levels have risen too much.  At least that’s how I understand it.  It was pretty gross and made me nauseous (not a big surprise) but overall, it wasn’t too bad.  

For the first time in my life, a male lab worker took my blood, which leads me to believe that lab technician, at least in Thunder Bay, is a female dominated job.  I told him I was excited to see a male lab technician because I love seeing things that break gender stereotypes.  He laughed and said something like, right on!  He was completely fabulous and ridiculously nice and I’ve decided I want him to be our next door neighbour.

So I’ve made it to 25 weeks and I’m surviving.  I will start the six pills a day tomorrow, along with my continued Zantac three times a for heartburn, and Diclectin three times a day for nausea.  I feel like I take handfuls of pills a day.  

I’ve started experiencing severe pelvic pain (like the pelvis bone) which makes it very difficult to walk and move.  I’m not thrilled about this because this is a symptom I didn’t have with the previous pregnancies.  It’s just one more thing that adds to my depression.  But it’s ok, I will make it through…and all the kicks will be good encouragment for the weeks to come.

Next doctor appointment in two weeks, followed by the RH shot at the hospital. 



Wonderful Women Part Seven

8 Mar

March 8th is International Women’s Day. In keeping with the tradition of previous years, I’m going to spotlight several women who have played important roles in my life.

If you see your name listed and want it removed, just let me know.

March is women’s history month and these women all have their own unique history, which is part of my own unique history.

Part one can be found here

Part two

Part three

Part four

Part five

Part six

Sunday School and Beyond

Karen H: A wonderful Sunday school and youth group friend who Ive written about here.

Lydia F: another wonderful Sunday school and youth group friend who I’ve written about here and here.

Ellen C: Like a second mother, or a very amazing aunt.  Ellen has been my mom’s best friend for years and our two families have always been very close.  She has always been supportive and interested in what I’m doing in life. She gave me 13 roses and a white gold ring on my 13th birthday. I’ll always remember that because she made it into such a big deal. She has been present for every milestone in my life and is always excited to help me celebrate.

Eva M: Oldest daughter of Ellen.  We were never very close because she always seemed so much older and cooler.  My brother and i played with her younger brother and sister and she was always there, in the background, quietly watching and doing things that I thought were far above my comprehension

Elke C: We met when she was born: the youngest daughter of my mom’s best friend and one of my mom’s regular babysitting charges. Although four years younger, we were very close while growing up. With her I could act a little younger than I could with other people. We played card games and barbies and went for walks around my neighbourhood and played in her treehouse and chased her dog around. She always laughed at my jokes and made me feel like the best comedian around.

Sarah M: a Sunday school and youth group friend.  When we first met, I remember thinking she was a lot older than me (because she was a foot taller than me).  She and her mother came over to visit and I thought my brother and I were meeting our new babysitter.  We put on a show of wild silliness and Sarah just sat there smiling.  Later I found out that she was my age, but that first meeting set the tone for our friendship.  Yes, Sarah is able to converse and have fun, but she often just sits, observes, and smiles.  But beyond the quiet exterior is an amazingly strong woman who has remained upright and forward-moving despite circumstances that would bring many to the brink.

Marla D: the young wife of my youth group leader.  I loved being in her presence because she was always so calm and serene.  She radiated peace and made people feel comfortable and at ease.  At age 12 or 13 when I first met her, she was a young wife with a young baby.  I didn’t really know too much about her own personal hopes and dreams at the time, but she proved to be a terrific role model for little old me.  I saw what she had (a sweet little family) and I wanted it too.  One day, in the summer, I caught a glimpse of Marla’s legs as she hoisted her skirt a bit higher so she could step over something.  It’s actually pretty weird that I’ve retained this memory but I remember Marla didn’t have shaved legs in that brief glimpse.  I was amazed.  I thought, this sweet little wife and mother is actually a complete bad-ass who doesn’t care about societal norms.  And I was right.  I don’t know about Marla’s legs at present time, but as I’ve grown to develop a peer relationship with her as opposed to teacher/student, I’m continually impressed by the level headed wisdom that Marla pours into the Universe.  She is definitely a bad-ass, one that I’m blessed and amazed to call my friend.

Donna C: I saw her around school when I was younger, but she was a couple grades younger than me and I never really gave her a second thought.  In my eyes, she was just a sweet little girl.  When that sweet little girl grew up, I got to know her better as she started attending my church and eventually became daughter-in-law to my mom’s best friend.  To me, while we weren’t incredibly close, Donna appeared to be very intelligent and driven to accomplish her goals.  She has grown into an amazing woman who is passionate about teaching, gardening, living green, and parenting.  

Kelly R: another Sunday school and youth group classmate.  We weren’t very close but we had a lot of fun in group settings.  I loved goi to her house for youth group activities because it was huge.  And the yard was huge.  And her large family seemed so relaxed and fun.  One day I was looking through my dad’s family tree and I spotted Kelly’s name.  It was a really weird moment wherein I just stared at her name on the page in shock.  When I was quite young, my friends and I always thought it would be hilarious and awesome if we discovered we were somehow related.  Finding Kelly’s family in my family tree was like a dream come true.  Granted, we weren’t the closest of friends, but it was still surreal.  To this day, I’m still finding people I know in my family tree.

Tessa M: another Sunday school and youth group friend.  We had a lot of laughs together though we were never super close.  Tessa seemed rebellious and unapproachable.  She wore stylish clothes and perfectly applied makeup and she was abrupt and confident and oh so much cooler than me.  

Shawnee P: the young wife of the second youth group leader, after Marla’s family had moved on to their next adventure.  I remember attending the church meeting where members were voting about hiring Shawnee’s husband.  One of the biggest issues was Shawnee’s age.  The way people worried, I expected to meet a flighty young sixteen year old.  She wasn’t actually sixteen (obviously) and I’ve never asked her how old she was.  When the youth met her, it didn’t seem to matter anymore.  She was young enough to fit in with the teenagers and old enough to be a teacher and impart her own brand of laid back-hippie wisdom.  That’s not supposed to be an insult, Shawnee told us her family was a bunch of weird hippies.  Eventually Shawnee’s family moved from youth group leadership to another adventure, but I still have fond, albeit strange, memories of her.  Like the time she said, “Guys, I’m pregnant and that means I just can’t stop burping.  You’ll just have to get used to it.”  We did get used to it Shawnee, and we thought it was hilarious.

Part Eight Tomorrow

Who gets to take home the cozy fleece blanket?

8 Mar

JP is feeling much better this morning so let’s get down to business.

On this, International Women’s day, five amazing women entered my March giveaway!



I wish I had a blanket and book to give each of them!  I know four of these ladies personally and they are definitely amazing.  I’m just assuming the fifth lady is also amazing.

Get to it JP…







Can you see the name?



Congratulations Jolene!!!

I think you will love cuddling up with my mom’s fleecy blanket and reading about women’s history!  Or reading about anything!  Or maybe you’ll even want to wrap yourself in this fleece while you’re talking to the city on cbc radio!   You could make all your coworkers super jealous!!

I will be touch with you shortly Jolene!

Stay tuned for this year’s instalments of Wonderful Women.

Delay

7 Mar
There will be a delay in pulling the winning name for the giveaway as my littlest buddy is at the ER with an ear infection 
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