Saturday, December 26, 2009

Merry Christmas

I'm sitting here enjoying two of my presents - a milk frother and a MacBook Pro. The milk frother was from my mom, and I've made a mocha latte, two egg nog lattes (with KahluĂ ) and a chai latte, and I absolutely love it. This is not going to help me lose weight but is going to save me a fortune at Starbucks and other fancy coffee places. The laptop is from Santa and I am in love - with the computer and the guy who gave it to me.

Christmas this year was one of the best in a while, despite it taking quite some time to get into the spirit of the season. Ryan was in California teaching a course for two weeks leading up to Christmas (he came back a week before Christmas) and it just felt like I had 800000000 things to do, and not nearly enough time to do them. But by 3:00 on Christmas Eve we were headed to Mass, and I just thought to myself, "By the time we leave here, everything will be closed. If I don't have it now, I'm not going to have it for Christmas and that's just too bad. So be it."

So. I made sure I had everything I needed for Christmas dinner and breakfast and Christmas Eve dinner on Dec 23. All three girls were participating in the children's mass on Christmas Eve this year, so we had to be at church for 3:00 for one last practice. I put a beef stew in the slow cooker around lunch time, got everyone bathed and dressed and got to church just slightly late. Friends joined us for the service, all three girls were beautiful and well-behaved angels (seriously - they were dressed as angels for the nativity story). Sam did a reading and did a great job - she looked so big and so grown-up (you know, for a seven year old) and read beautifully. After Mass we came home, changed and ate our beef stew (new recipe, quite yummy) and then opened our presents from each other. We checked the NORAD Santa tracker, then put the girls to bed and finished the preparations.

Hailey woke us up by running into our room and yelling, "It's Christmas! It's Christmas!" at reasonable hour (7:40, if I remember correctly). We opened presents, and Ryan and the girls spent quite a bit of time playing various Wii games. I started dinner at some point, with no real plan as to what time we would eat. It kinda went like this - I put the stuffing in the slow cooker and figured it could just stay there until everything else was ready. At some point, I put the turkey in the oven and said, "Okay, I guess we'll eat in about three hours." I made mashed potatoes, cooked some acorn squash, browned some buns, made gravy and set the table with Christmas stuff that I don't think I've ever used. It was awesome. The whole time I was just enjoying cooking and thinking, "Well, this should be pretty good, and hey, if it sucks, we have frozen dinners in the freezer." I was able to just relax and have fun with the cooking and enjoy the day and the meal with my famiy. It was very peaceful and relaxed and everyone seemed to enjoy themselves immensely.

We decided after Rylee was born that we weren't going to run all over the province trying to get to everyone at Christmas. We celebrated with my parents and sister the weekend before Christmas, and will celebrate with Ryan's family tomorrow. Now we're building our own traditions, and I think we may have started some this year that I'd like to keep. The dinner in the slow cooker on Christmas Eve worked well, because we needed something that we could leave alone for about 3.5 hours and have ready as soon as we got home. It might not be beef stew every year, but for as long as the girls are involved in the 5 pm children's mass, I think we'll stick with that.

Dinner was also great. I did pretty much all of it, and actually really enjoyed doing it. Ryan did the vast majority of the shopping, which I think he enjoyed. I liked using my Christmas dishes and serving utensils and tablecloth. I have other Christmas things that didn't get used this year, but maybe next year. The fact that it was just our little family was nice, too - very low stress because I wasn't worried about impressing anyone or what anyone would think or how my kitchen looked (it was a disgrace by the time we sat down to eat) I think that now that I've done the whole thing, I could do it for others, but it was nice to not have to worry.

Overall, I think that's what made the day so wonderful. It was peaceful, no stress. I hope that whatever you celebrate this time of year, it was/is/will be peaceful and joyous.

Saturday, September 26, 2009

Oh daddy dear you know you're still number one

A photographer took this picture of my beloved and our baby (who will be THREE in a few weeks) at my cousin's wedding. I had to share.

Sunday, August 23, 2009

Everything's better down where it's wetter

I went for a dive under the Bluewater Bridge in Sarnia with Ryan and some people from the Sarnia Underwater Club on Friday night. For the first time ever, someone took my picture underwater and I thought I'd share it. Here I am!!

Monday, April 6, 2009

Knowing my fate is to be with you

I haven't watched American Idol in quite some time, but I hear that this week they have to sing a song that was released the year they were born. This sounded interesting, so I did some research, and I would like you all to know that if I'm ever in a contest where I have to sing a song from the year I was born, you can expect three things:

1. I will sing ABBA's "Waterloo",

2. I will belt it out at top volume.

3. I will lose the contest.

I'd love to hear what my friends/readers would sing from the year of their birth. Wikipedia has a list of hit singles from each year - check out the year of your birth and tell me what you'd sing!

Saturday, February 21, 2009

All-Acadian, northern lady-an, a real Canadian girl

Really, I've just been dying to use that as a post title :)

Tonight I played hockey at 8, and had a lot of fun even though we lost (again) and I didn't score any goals (again). We voted tonight on most improved player and most sportsmanlike, and I think I have a good shot at most improved. I'm not sure when the results are made public.

After hockey I drove very slowly home on an expressway that was so covered in snow you couldn't see where the lanes were. It's been snowing since Wed or Thurs. Ryan left Tues. I haven't been shoveling the driveway and obviously, neither has he. Tonight I decided it's time, so after playing hockey, I shoveled the driveway.

Now I'm having a beer. It doesn't get much more Canadian than this.

And we'll have fun, fun, fun

Everyone in my family is sick except me. I still have a wicked cough, and who knows, probably something else too, but I'm too busy to be really sick right now. Monday was a holiday, Family Day (thank you Mr. McGuinty, I still think you're a weenie but I appreciate the long weekend in February), so this was only a four day work week to begin with. I only worked (at school, anyway) one and a half days.

Last Saturday Ryan finally succumbed to the flu. He was dizzy, achy, feverish - flu-y, really. It made for a lovely Valentine's celebration (he tried to force himself to be well all day, and finally passed out on the couch after dinner). He remained sick for the rest of the weekend. On Monday, Sam and Rylee developed fevers again, and by Monday night were still not well, so I booked the next day off. By morning Sam was a bit better, but Hailey was worse, so it was good that I was home. Tuesday morning Ryan left for California. As he left he said he felt much better and that his fever had finally broken, so I was happy for him. Wednesday morning Sam still didn't feel good, but I told her to try going to school for the morning and I'd see if I could get a substitute for the afternoon. I managed, and took both Sam and Hailey home at noon. At this point I suspected pink eye because both of Hailey's eyes were so bloodshot, but as it turns out, I don't think that's what she had. Thursday I managed to put in a full day at work but by the time I picked Hailey up she was complaining that her tummy hurt but she didn't want to go to the doctor on call because she didn't want to miss swimming lessons. She fell asleep on three very short drives that night, and finally fell asleep on my lap while I talked to my mom on the phone. Sam also fell asleep on the way home from swimming, then tried to curl up in the La-Z-Boy and fall asleep when we got home. I made her go upstairs, put on jammies and brush her teeth. By the time I got off the phone with my mom (around 8 pm) Rylee was the only kid still awake. I should have known at that point to book a substitute for Friday, but I thought maybe they just needed some extra sleep and that would take care of everything. Friday morning I asked Sam how she felt, and she said good, but after 10-15 minutes of arguing she still hadn't gotten out of bed to start getting dressed. I gave in, called my principal and took yesterday off too. By 9 am I had a doctor's appointment for all three kids for that morning. We picked Hailey up at school (she was well enough to go, and it was Toy Day - who wants to miss Toy Day?) and headed to the doctor. I fully expected to be told it's just a cough, caused by a virus, you just have to let it run its course, but instead was told Rylee has an ear?throat?both? infection and Sam and Hailey have pneumonia. So they're all on antibiotics now, and I'm hoping that medication + a weekend of resting will get everyone healthy enough to allow me to work next week. Ryan is still in California until next Saturday, but my dad has offered to come help me out next week if I need it.

And Ryan? Poor baby. Every day/night this week, he's told me he's still not well, still coughing, still achy. Yesterday he finally got medical attention and it turns out he has acute bronchitis. No antibiotics, but some kick-butt cough medicine that will hopefully FINALLY bring him some relief.

In the meantime, Ryan bought me a gift card to try out a day spa here in town. The card had to be used within four months, and he bought it last fall, so he finally booked the appointments for me because he wanted to be sure I actually went. Unfortunately, he booked them all while he's in California, which will present some child care issues, but dang it, I'm going!! I rescheduled one because it conflicted with swimming lessons and I couldn't get a babysitter to take them to swimming, but last night I went for a manicure. My nails are lovely now. Next week I get a pedicure, a hot stone massage, and something else, I forget what. I have also booked a babysitter for tonight so that I can get out to play hockey. Gotta take care of me, too!

Anyway, that's what's up here. I feel bad that I skipped my annual Ystavanpaiva post, talking about how fabulous my friends are. Rest assured, my friends, I think you're all fabulous and am grateful to have you in my life.

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

I don't remember, I don't recall...

the last time an illness knocked me out of commission for three days!

It was probably inevitable. All three of the kids have been sick at some point in the past week or so, and I have ended up doing most of the caring for the sick children (please note: I did not say ALL. Ryan did some too, they just seemed to get sick when Ryan had prior commitments)

It started on Fri Jan 23. We had Rangers tickets and Sammie and I were supposed to go. However, after school, she was in bed instead of helping to clean the toy room. I told her if she was too sick to clean up she was too sick to go to the Rangers game, thinking surely that would get her out of bed, but she just went back to sleep. She developed a fever, and we realized that she really was sick. So Ryan stayed home with Sammie and Rylee, and I took Hailey to the game.

The next day Hailey woke up and said her tummy hurt. I suggested that maybe she was just hungry, or it was the result of too much sugar at the game (she ate most of a bag of cotton candy) Ryan was in a curling bonspiel that day, so I took all three of them to gymnastics (after asking Sammie how she felt, hoping she'd say she was still sick so I could sleep in!) At gymnastics, Hailey finished her class and said she was cold (which was Sam's first symptom) and her tummy hurt. She ended up falling asleep in my arms, and throwing up the minute we walked in the door from gymnastics. I spent the rest of the day checking temperatures (Sammie still had a bit of a fever, too) and checking on a sleeping Hailey to make sure she was still breathing. Sunday both girls were mostly better, and by Monday they were fine to go to school.

Ryan had a day off on the Wed, so I called home after school to remind him to turn the oven on and put dinner in. I expected to get the machine, thinking he'd be working in the basement (he's in the process of finishing our basement), and told him so when he answered. He said he'd done very little work in the basement because the babysitter had called and said Rylee was throwing up. He'd spent most of the day cuddling with her and cleaning her up when she threw up. She threw up again through the night, so I took the next day off as a family care day (bless whoever came up with those!) She seemed fine that day, no fever and no more throwing up, so on Friday, which was a PA day, I took all three of them to the sitter and went off to work.

So that night I was on the phone with a friend trying to make vacation plans when Rylee started crying. Ryan was on the couch with her and asked her if she was hurt, but she just kept crying, until she threw up. I hung up, we cleaned everything (I cleaned and changed Rylee, Ryan cleaned the couch) She threw up again the next morning, right after I said I didn't think she should go to gymnastics. She threw up again while I was gone with Sam and Hailey, so I took her to the doctor on call and sat with her on my lap for about two hours before we saw the doctor. I think that was the final straw.

On SuperBowl Sunday I woke up feeling not quite right, but not terrible. However, as the day went on, I felt worse. I could barely focus at church, and by the time we got home, I could hardly function. I tried giving myself a stern talking-to, saying, "You're not sick, you're just being lazy because you don't want to make the Key Lime pie," but the truth was, I could hardly stand upright. Sammie and Hailey pretty much made lunch for themselves and Rylee (Ryan was out buying last minute supplies for our SuperBowl party).

That day was also our priest's last day at our church, so Ryan went to the farewell celebration (I was in no condition to leave) He didn't get home in time to take Sammie and Hailey to hockey, so I did, and took Rylee with us, too. We realized we didn't have their sticks, but couldn't find them, so I figured they were in Ryan's car and maybe he was meeting us at the rink. We drove over and didn't find him. I asked if there were extra sticks, but no luck. We drove home, where Ryan told us he had just sent the sticks to the rink with friends of ours. The friends showed up back at our house shortly after, followed by another friend who was coming to the party. I sat down on the couch, barely aware of what was happening around me. My friend suggested I looked like I needed to go to bed, and I decided he was right, so I walked upstairs and did just that. That was around 4 pm, and I didn't surface until about 7:30. I walked downstairs with about 5 min to go in the first half, and most of our friends left at halftime. I then fell asleep on the couch, and finally went to bed around 9:30.

At around 11:30 that night, I heard Rylee crying. I heard Ryan walk into her room, then heard a curse word. I got up and joined him in the girls room, where I saw that Rylee had thrown up. Again. I cleaned her up, Ryan cleaned the bed up and we decided to put her in our bed for the night. At about 3 am I realized that even if I felt better, I wasn't sleeping well, so I should probably take Monday off. I woke up every time Rylee coughed, thinking she was going to throw up in my bed, but she never did. I stayed home yesterday, and since Ryan didn't have a call, he was here, too. We also kept Rylee home, just in case.

Last night I was on the phone with my sister, the nurse, who recommended one more day off. I decided that was good advice so I called in sick for today, too. This is the "I don't remember" part. I seriously don't remember the last time I even took one sick day, let alone two.

I do feel better today. My chest still hurts from coughing, but a long bath helped the aching in my hips (caused, I'm pretty sure, by all the lying around) I didn't sleep well again last night, because I was worried about Ryan missing his 8 am meeting and not getting up in time to get the girls off to school/daycare. However, I woke Ryan up at 6:05, and he left in plenty of time for his meeting, and the girls all made it to the bus stop/daycare - we were even early for the bus. I told the sitter that I'm home today if she needed to send one of the girls home, but so far, so good. So since I came home from dropping them off, I have acccomplished the following:

-checked email, Facebook and the blogs I read
-finished my book
-had a cup of tea while watching a show I recorded last night
-had a long, hot bath (with a new book)
-spent three more hours in bed, most of that sleeping
-written this blog post

Now, because I actually feel a little bit hungry, I'm going to go downstairs and have some toast and tea. I am giving myself permission to do nothing but get better today - as far as my students are concerned, I've been off for the last three days. I still feel kind of fuzzy-headed, so I think more relaxing is in order. Also more water, and maybe some food.