Sunday, August 31, 2008

corrections and thoughts...

okay, so I have made some mistakes in my last couple of posts:
1. in the book Pajama Time, the words to the little ditty are really: jamma, jamma, jamma, jamma, P! J! [trust me, i think I now have the whole book memorized!!]
2. contrary to what I said yesterday, I didn't read the whole book in one sitting - more like three quarters! regardless, I was re-reading both yesterday & friday's posts and I was confused. thought I'd set it all straight!

I figured out how to reverse the mirror image on photo booth, so here is yet another picture of me peering over some recent DS paper, upsy daisy stamp set & some in colours [all SU!]. aw shmuck. I can't get to load...will do tomorrow!

I've also been thinking lately about joy. as in joy vs. happiness. I am trying to sort out all my thoughts and usually writing here gets all the bugs out. well, not tonight. LOL just too many thoughts? who knows. regardless, it will have to wait.

happy labour day, chickies!!

Saturday, August 30, 2008

it's cold, dude.

okay, so I officially froze my arse off today while sitting outside manning the garage sale. the garage sale that was suppose to get rid of all the stuff and put some coinage in my pockets. yeah. well, it wasn't awful - got to meet some neighbours, hang out with the kids, make enough money to buy booze and read a book [oh, and susan stopped by with kids...and by kids I mean seth and THE CUTEST BABY!! at 4pm I was warm, as the wind died down and the sun shone brightly on me. I actually took my scarf off!

regardless, it was a fun time and hey, I got to read a book. the book. LOL okay, not THE book, but the next book review book!

Take the Risk by Ben Carson, is totally NOT a book I would have bought. would I still buy it? well, I've read it, so I guess I don't have to, but I would lend my mom's copy to my husband and share it with y'all! and before you all panic, I did read a book in between this one and the last one...murder mysteries just don't qualify as books to write reviews about [it was a Lisa Gardner book, if anyone is looking for a creepy psycho-thriller]. and for those of you that know that I generally obsess about africa and the state of the world, humanity and justice, I am also reading "a long way gone: memoirs of a boy soldier" by ishmael beah [that review will come soon!] BUT, back to ben carson, the man is a neurosurgeon. I totally wanted to be a brain surgeon when I was a teenager...just never mastered the whole science thingy. and he's not just any neurosurgeon. he is one of the world's top pediatric brain guys. let's put it this way: he's known for separating conjoined twins...the ones that are joined at the head. so the guy knows risk. well, I sailed through the stories he told about the risks he's encountered and his formula for assessing risk [which is very good & helpful, if you are looking for some decision making guidelines]. then I got to the part about "taking yourself out of the middle" - okay, TOTALLY got my attention. it was more about taking risks and assessing decisions when you take your own emotional energy away from the decision. above all, that is the part I took from the book. is ben carson's story amazing? without a doubt. will his writing style drive you nuts? perhaps. is it a worthwhile read? absolutely. I totally had a perspective change when I read it and there are words now that I have that can describe the decision making process I tend to favour. so, if it gets passed your way, take a read.

Friday, August 29, 2008

a funny ty story

okay, so ty's new favorite book is called "pajama time" and it's this quirky little board book that rhymes. anyways, I go to read it tonight and I was doing the little song-ish part before I started [it goes like: jammy, jammy, jammy, jammy...P! J!] and ty says, "mom, pee is a bathroom word." and I agreed, yes it is. okay, so that is the prelude to the reading of the story when I get to the little song-ish part when I read, ty starts saying it with me: jammy, jammy, jammy, jammy Poo! J! totally made me laugh. try telling a 3 year old that P is a letter AND a word!

we've been running a garage sale this more day! it's been great fun meeting all our neighbours and just hanging out outside in this last bit of summer. school started for teachers this past week and although i am feeling pumped for monday, it's just a bit stressful getting all the things organized and ready for the big day. nate's kindergarten teacher called this week and they are staggering the entry, so that nate starts wednesday with a small group and then all the kids go on friday. hopefully all will be well and he'll be okay with it all!

although I feel like I've been really introspective and philosophical as of late, I have NOTHING for you tonight. just know that I am, as always, grateful for your comments and that I am half done a new book that I am LOVING!

sleep tight...

Sunday, August 24, 2008

"those" times

so I've contemplated telling this story, or maybe I've just been distracted and forgot, but I was reminded again today of the impact one person can have in just a moment. this is maybe only the second time in my life this has happened. let me tell you the story of the first [then maybe it will all make sense].

I have no idea how old I was, but I do remember I was working the merch table for a carmen [dude, remember HIM???] concert, so really, I must have been 17 or 18 because I was the BOSS of the merch table -I used to volunteer for a production company EONS ago and I was the go-to girl on concert nights..merch, security, the whole 9 yards. now, doing merch for concerts is a b*tch because the world of the band is one that thinks they can treat people like crap on a stick. no literally. band guys are totally NOT nice to the common folk. the ACTUALLY band guys are usually okay, but the "for-hires" not so nice. as the BOSS of all things merch, you get to see this first hand when you work concerts. needless to say, I remember very vividly a guy named kim [yeah, still remember his name]. he was carman's band guy - the guy who had to coordinate all the merch people from city to city. I had a moment with this guy. not a sexual-ickish-ewww moment, but a connection moment. kim was the kindest, most patient man I ever had the pleasure to work with in a concert environment [and he smelled really great!]. I walked away from the carmen concert with this moment that really, to me, was a moment where I was in contact with a person who was authentic and a true reflection of christ. and, indeed, I remember his name 18 years later.

well, heading home from SLC I had a similar moment. not one that was so impactful, but a moment nonetheless. I was standing in the security line and I started talking the guy behind me in line. he was tall, cute, bald and he was carrying a television camera. I was, for once, I struck up a conversation. well, we got all the way through security together [like a 15 minute ordeal] and when it was all over, he came and found me and asked me my name and shook my hand. then he was gone. I have no idea what caused me to start talking to this guy [his name is Christian] and maybe that is part of it - I almost NEVER talk to strangers. and I have really no good idea why this even made such an impression on me. he was heading to new orleans to shoot some footage on post-katrina. maybe in this moment it was because I thought for a second that I am not "that" old. that I can still have conversations with cute guys and not be dismissed or whatever. regardless, I have sorta been thinking about this a lot and just praying for him when I think of it.

both of these moment get me thinking about my own life and my interactions. am I "that" moment for someone else? and what am I doing in that moment? am I being the complainer? the b*tch? the one no one wants to really be with? or am I being a true representative of what I believe? kind. compassionate. gracious. grateful. content.

and what about those times that are not moments, but relationships. how much more important to be authentic.

Friday, August 22, 2008


patience and I have issues. I wish I could be the person who could tell a good "patience" story and be the hero at the end of it. I wish I could tell you that I sing the little "music machine" song and I no longer lose my patience with poor customer service people and phone solicitors. I am not that person. however, I believe that being a patient person is a good thing, a virtuous thing. but contrary to popular belief, I am not really a patient person. at least in my head I'm not. but what does it mean to be patient? well, I looked up the word "patience" in the dictionary and this is what I found: 1. the quality of being patient, as the bearing of provocation, annoyance, misfortune, or pain, without complaint, loss of temper, irritation, or the like; 2. an ability or willingness to suppress restlessness or annoyance when confronted with delay; 3. quiet, steady perseverance; even-tempered care; diligence

in looking at the definition, I think even further of my inadequacies. I read it and just think of driving on the yellowhead at 8 am on a friday morning and I am the antithesis of all things patient. in that moment, stuck behind a dump truck and blocked in by idiots, I am provoked, annoyed, pained, complaining and generally I lose my temper. or, I think about trying to get out of the house with 2 kids who are pretending to zap me because they are batman and spiderman and in that moment I am not able to suppress my restlessness and annoyance when confronted with that delay. or I think about trying to potty train a little boy named ty and I know that I am not the picture of a quiet, steady perseverance, let alone even-tempered. then I threw the word into the on-line thesaurus and synonyms of the word "patience" are words like "fortitude", "perseverance", "composure". these are words/concepts that are strong character traits. these words describe who I would like to be.

I remember some time ago - like seriously before I was married, maybe even before John & I were dating, I prayed that God would give me patience [maybe it was because I had met John, liked him and totally wanted to date him!]. yeah. bad thing to ask for. in asking for patience, turns out I was asking for opportunity to practice patience! turns out though, that the more you practice, the better you get at it. okay, so in my head I feel impatient and restless all the time, but funny enough, although I feel rather inadequate in the patience department, I know that I am practicing it daily and in that practicing, some of the character of God is perhaps becoming something I reflect better than I realize.

most of the comments i get about patience from people is in the reaction I get when I tell people what I do for a living. the conversation is usually like this:
them: "a teacher. what do you teach?"
me: "yeah, I teach jr high special needs"
them: "wow, tough job. you must have a lot of patience"
and at this point I cringe. and then I think about my prayer and I think about the job I do with kids. maybe they are connected. maybe in that moment that I choose to persevere, when I choose to be even-tempered, when I choose to suppress my annoyance at their lack of ability, when I demonstrate fortitude and composure when I am screaming in my head - I am choosing to practice patience. when I choose to read with a grade 9 boy who still doesn't know that t-h-e is always the word "the" - I am choosing to practice patience. and when I walk into my classroom and create a safe and caring learning environment with my example, I get to practice patience and fortitude and hope and perseverance. and in this, I am so fortunate that I have these opportunities.

just in reflection of this, I am almost tempted to pray this prayer again. maybe instead I will pray not for more opportunity to practice patience but to demonstrate it on a more regular, consistent, daily basis. maybe I will pray that I can wait in silence when I am restless and annoyed with colleagues or family members. maybe I will pray that I will not be provoked or irritated with little things like traffic and toys on the floor or dishes that don't seem to know when to leave the dishwasher. I know, however, that with any of these prayers that God will give me opportunity to hone this skill. mmmm. so maybe it's a no-win situation. or perhaps for those of you that interact with me a win-win situation.

Sunday, August 17, 2008

so I had an idea

LOL yeah, always the ideas, rarely the follow through! but susan got me thinking with her friday fun day [what do you call it again???] I love books, I love reading so maybe I should do a biweekly, unscheduled book review. although i have a HUGE stack of books by my bed that I was suppose to read this summer, there are a few that I have, and that I'd love to share. SOOOOOO, here we go. the first review!

The Shack, by William P Young

[we'll see if the graphic worked or if I'll be cursing this grand idea!]
well, this book was recommended to my by my friend erika. we were killing some time at the mall in SLC and we decided that the book store was a safe place to cool off and hang out. she saw this book on the front display and told me it was a good one and that I should read it. to be honest, personal recommendations can go either way...what I love may not be what you love and vice versa. and being an ex-employee of a well-known christian bookstore here in town, I am very skeptical of most all christian literature. however, I have a few exceptions and so since not all is bad, I bought the book. erika was telling me how many people who have read it have claimed that it was life-altering [totally didn't help the cynic in me!] so as I began to read, the skeptic/cynic needed a boff in the head for her bad attitude!

so, I read it twice. not the whole thing, but parts. let me explain.

this book is totally cool. really. it's fiction/theology/realism all rolled up into one. it is the story of mac, a man who has lost his youngest daughter in an act of extreme violence. then one day, he gets an invitation to go back to the place where his daughter was murdered - and the invitation is signed "papa", the name his wife uses to address God. I don't really want to give too much away, just in case you decide to track down a copy and read it, but mac has an encounter with God, in the shack, that changes his life. I couldn't put the book down when I first read it, mainly because whenever I read a book for the first time through, I just want to know how it ends. I had to go back and re-read just because there were theological parts that hit me deeper than I had imagined. there is a section in the middle where mac is having a conversation with someone [can't remember if it was papa, jesus or sarayu] about the human need for hierarchy. in return, the term "circle of relationship" is used - a concept that I am wanting to explore further [when I read it again after I get it back from my dad!]. it also talks a lot about trust [something I have big issues with]. anyways, it got me thinking about things that I rather not think about.

but, I digress. I thought this book was exceptionally written. it is thought provoking and interesting. it may just sit in my top 5.

Saturday, August 16, 2008


okay, so I can't figure out how to make pictures smaller on my new computer. I am very frustrated. grrr. so, if there are any mac users out there, email me and tell me what I'm doing wrong!

on another note, the boys and I went up to st paul this week [2 nights in a camper was a good time!!]. we had such a great time with coralee & lance. nate "drove" the tractor with lance and LOVED it!! ty was totally out of sorts and didn't want anything to do with tractors, but hey, nate was the same way 2 years ago.

went for a walk this evening. felt good to get back into the groove. I am going to walk the st albert half marathon in september, so the training has begun. realistically, I need to be 10lbs lighter before then, so whether I feel like it or not, crunch time is now. all my goal setting seems to go by the wayside when I feel like crap, so I don't know if it's even worth my time...[totally pms'ing today], but here are the goals: 5 weeks until marathon day. I need to walk AT LEAST 5k every second day until then [just to bank kilometers on my shoes] and then 10+ km every other day. in addition, I need to support my training with a shmuck-load of water. and then there is my nemesis. food. I like to eat. I like to eat sweet, sugary things. maybe the whole no-plan is the way to go. maybe I need to get back on weight watchers. maybe I need to just track my calories. maybe. all I know is that i am rather disgusted with myself right now and above all, my bad attitude needs to change. I am discouraged. disappointed. disgusted. irritated. and THAT is what needs to change. so, really, it's all up to me. love that. [not!]

Sunday, August 10, 2008

the bad mom club

okay, let's have an honesty chat. no seriously. today goes down as one of the bad ones. now, I love my kids, I really do and so much of today was based on just sheer exhaustion - me & the kids. I am not too sure where it went south, because we were having a pretty decent afternoon. we'd gone to the collingwood market after church, then to DQ for a treat lunch. then, we came home and they boys went on the slip-n-slide. really, a good afternoon. then they came in and were playing and there were toys flipping everywhere. all I asked was that they cleaned up. really, a reasonable request, I would think. yeah, not for nate and ty. oh no, I ask WAY too much! yeah, they laughed at me. so the bad mom yelled [nate yelled back...boy that kid has some lungs on him!]. the good mom started putting toys in a recycle bag because obviously they don't really want them. then nate really screamed. ty got the message and started cleaning up. nate started hitting me, so good mom was steady freddy and walked him to his room for a time out. ty & I finished the clean up [in hind site, nate totally got off the hook]. then they went back outside and played. then came in and I dried them off. I told them to get dressed for bed [it was 630 by this time]. yeah, well obviously that was unreasonable as well because they proceeded to yell and holler and bad mom yelled back and sat on the floor and cried as the boys laughed. yeah. they laughed. somehow I got them dressed and put them in their room for a mom-time-out. I cried some more, then went and tucked them into bed. ty said "sorry mom for being sassy" and kissed me. nate, just asked for a tuck in. at that point, I was just happy that they were going to bed.

now, I know we all have bad days with our kids, but this one wasn't pretty. I need more sleep. so do they.

I am off to bed, I work for a few more days at the bakery...and tomorrow I am so excited to be having lunch with suz & kath. and it's my open house/catty party/garage sale gig tomorrow. I need a project!!!

the backtrack, the bet, and other misc. things

okay, so I was looking for a quote for John back in my January posts, and got thinking about January. I was following weight watchers on-line and actually had lost 4lbs. I keep wondering why this time it's so tough. turns out I've been eating almost the same [okay, so this weeks eating has been the pits, but overall I haven't been over my calorie limit], but I haven't really been walking or doing anything active. now, I do have some good excuses [tired from salt lake, sick, working at the bakery] but really, they are all excuses. I have 3 weeks until school starts and I want to be 6lbs lighter. so we are on the +/-6 plan as of right now. I do have boot camp again on tuesday night and I want to do at least a 30 minute walk everyday for the next 3 weeks. do-able goals? I think so.

one of my motivators is that I made a bet with my friend Chris. whoever loses the most weight by christmas day wins the bet - $200. plus, if we both win/tie, then we are just going to go on a shopping spree together. let's be serious. I want to buy a size 10 pair of jeans. and I want to "OWN" those jeans.

okay, so the kids are downstairs...wearing their halloween costumes from last year - playing dress up. I need to prep for my open house tomorrow. so I am going to shut this one down.

oh, and the quote was: do not "try" or "hope" for results. either do it or don't.

Wednesday, August 06, 2008

sleepy little bunnies

we've had some late nights at our house. this is what my sweet bunnies are doing at this very moment:

Monday, August 04, 2008

sneak peeks

so, my camera on my computer takes reverse images, so all of these convention samples/peeks are reverse! the little set with the square scalloped images are the new Ronald McDonald house stamps - they match with the new square scallop punch!!

it's good to be home. and although the boys didn't come to the airport as planned [nate got sick and with my delayed flight, we thought it wouldn't be good to have the kids make the trip], they both ended up in bed with us. I had such a good time in slc with e - seriously a great time, and although sad to leave her again, it really is good to be home. I will try to post more stuff/pics/sneak peeks this week!

Sunday, August 03, 2008

in denver

okay, I will blog "for real" tonight when I get home. but, I am in denver with George, my new soft-faux-boyfriend. a little "colorado" starbucks bear. uber cool. also here with susan, aaron & crowd...good times. our flight is delayed...but of course. delayed flights seem to be the flying experience of choice today. alas, mere hours until I am home again, able to sleep in my own bed. okay, so my brain is fried out on here are my airport pictures for today: