Thursday, February 26, 2009

My Hair is On Fire!!

Last night, I was in a blah mood, hashing about how I don't go anywhere, do anything, blah bla bla. Then, I remembered - Holy crap! I could have died today!

The day started out normally. Went for a walk in town with my bro and SIL and had white hot chocolate at a café. Already, the day was more exciting than most, since I rarely get the car during the day. Then, once the kids were in bed, I went to stoke the furnace and MY HAIR CAUGHT ON FIRE!!! You heard right - I leaned over to poke at the embers, and of a sudden there was this weird crinkly, staticky sound and my bangs shriveled up! I don't know if it was aflame, since my eyes can't see the top of my head, but after smacking my scalp with my hands and pulling at the crinkly locks, I was convinced that I was no longer in danger. It doesn't look bad, I just don't need to go for that haircut afterall.

Then, I loaded up the kids into the car and headed to Rich's work to pick him up. We live on a secondary road (not a highway, but it's well used. Speed limit is 80, but most go 100 km/h). The truck in front of me slowed down, so I pressed the brakes and...nothing. NO BRAKES!! There I was, 3 kids in the backseat, me in the front and no brakes! Then, the cell phone rings! I'm answering the phone, trying to think ahead to where there was a big driveway or parking lot to swing into, the kids are yelling at me to turn up the radio since they couldn't hear it...AAAHH! Long story short, I pulled it into 2nd, coasted through the intersection without killing anyone, manoeuvred the car between vehicles in Rich's parking lot and came to a full, safe stop in front of a snowbank. Fiew. Safe.

I think my life might just be more exciting than I give it credit for.

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

They's Here!

They made it - one day late! R & N were meant to leave on Sunday night but a major snowstorm that dumped a foot of snow on the Maritimes closed the highways and forced them to delay their bus trip until Monday night. Dad picked them up from the bus stop this morning, and they spent a few hours with the kids and I before lunch.

Maddie and Eva were very excited. They had the whole morning planned out before R & L even got here. First, they were going to play Barbies. Then, they were going to play play-doh (purple, and pink play-doh). Or, they might do play-doh first. Or, maybe, Barbies AND play-doh all at once. Big plans!

Anyhow, we're gearing up for a great week!

Sunday, February 22, 2009

They's Coming!

I am very excited! We're having visitors this week, so I've been trying to move my schedule around to allow me some free time to spend with my brother and sis-in-law. They're taking the red-eye bus from Montreal and should be here some time tomorrow. When they visit, we cram in as much family time as we can. That usually means playing games, hanging out and generally doing nothing special in an effort to recreate what it would be like if they lived here all the time. No convincing them, though. As my sis-in-law once said, "I like knowing that if I want to have coffee at 3 am, I can just go out and get it."

One of the local women replied, "well, you could make coffee", but that wasn't the point.

I love visiting Montreal. I like Chinatown, public transportation, cafés, different cultures, the free festivals, the port, the markets selling everything from durian fruit to baklava to fresh fish and everything in between...the last time Maddie was there, she raved for days about taking the bus and the train (metro). On the car ride home, I entertained her for hours by drawing pictures of the subway.

I can't wait!

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Can't Think Of A Good Title

I'm not much in the blogging mood lately, but I've been plenty busy anyway. In the last week I've been offered two part-time jobs. I turned down the teaching job. I LOVE teaching FSL, but I couldn't really make sense out of using up two more evenings from my week. Frankly, I don't think I even have two evenings that are mine to give. The second job was being a french tour guide at the new potato-chip factory/museum. It would be very, very part-time. I think it would be fun! I might consider it, if someone volunteers as free babysitter. I wonder if it pays in bags of chips... Ahem.

Last Sunday, the girls were scheduled to sing in front of the church. Maddie was NOT happy. She whined and cried, but after I bribed her with "something special" (snowmobile ride) she decided that she'd do it. They practiced into their remote control/hair brush mics every morning, even practicing their bows and Elvis-style "Thank you very much"es. Sunday morning came and their names were called out to come to the front and sing. Yeah. No amount of bribing, threatening and sheepish grins to the congregation could convince them to get up on stage. In the end, I got up on the platform, Maddie hid behind me, Eva mumbled her way through some lyrics and I stumbled through the verses. My apologies to the parishioners.

On the doula front, I've been trying to put out my feelers. I've called and chatted with different schools, women's centres, prenatal classes, etc to offer my services. Our DONA rep will be trying to find me some clients, and I'm grateful for that. She is trying a new mentoring approach, so it's very exciting that I'd be partnering with her and learning from a seasoned doula. I'm hoping to see some results from all this. It's hard to be excited about a job when you hardly ever get to do it. I know I love it, and I know I'm good at it, but I guess passion gets lazy if you don't nurture it.

Saturday, February 14, 2009


Tuesday night - another ethnic cooking class! This time, we were asked to get up and help cook the meal, so it was much more interactive than the first class. It was German night. We made schnitzel "wienerart", apfelstrudel with vanilla sauce and potato salat. She split us into groups, and we each made one of the dishes.

Our group was the potato salat. She brought a bag of NB potatoes and filled up a huge pot with potatoes straight from the bag and asked us to boil them whole, with the skins on. Sounds fine, right? The thing is, NB potatoes are unwashed and some were as big as two fists. We asked if she wanted us to wash them first, but no. Should we peel them? No, it tastes better with the skins on. So, with visions of botulism and parasite eggs, we boiled the dirty whole potatoes. In the end, the potatoes took over an hour to boil, and the water was mud. And you know what? They tasted awesome. I think the boiling killed any critters. :)

The potato salat also had cut up salami in it. Our group cubed the meat, but it was only after everything was said and done that we noticed that we had forgotten to take off the wax "skin" from the sausage before cutting it up. We discreetly picked wax paper from our salat!

Still, best potato salat I ever tasted.

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Little Things, Big Conclusions

We had lunch with a couple from our church on Sunday. They work for the local bible school, so we met them at the campus cafeteria for chicken lunch. We got to talking, and come to find out, they used to live an hour away from my hometown in Quebec! They were even regulars at the bible school my dad attended 20 years ago.

I asked them why they went into the ministry, and that led to my sharing with them about the Philippines. She told me that if and when God decides it's the right time, things will happen to let me know. First, one thing will pop up, then another, then someone might say something, and all those little things will add up to a big conclusion.

And, then, Eva ran into a steel chair and got a huge blue bruise on her face. So much for deep conversations!

This weekend has been a big one for thinks. I dreamed of Davao. It's been on my mind a lot. Does that qualify as a little thing that adds up?


I'm feeling heavy today. Not weight-wise, but like I'm carrying too much on my shoulders. It's not any one thing, really. It's more of a combination of all the little things. The two little ones are sick with fever and colds. It's harder and harder to find babysitters, and yet, I am in need of one more often now than ever. My evenings are overloaded. We have several needed trips planned, but little room in the budget for them. There are a few unmentionables that won't make it to the blog world out of respect for others' privacy...

So, I'm feeling it in my body. My jaw is tight, my shoulders droopy and my mind is sleepy. Blah.

I was at a meeting last night and I met up with a friend I haven't seen in a while. She shared her worry about a mutual friend of ours. I've been concerned about this mutual friend for a long time, now, and since last night, more so. I got home around 10 pm, and lay awake for a long time. That's unusual for me. Since the kids were born, I'm an excellent sleeper.

What to do, right? Where is that fine line between sticking your nose in someone's business and doing the intervention thing? Sure, there is prayer, and I've been doing that. When is it time to get up off your knees and DO something? It's frustrating. I'm tired.

Sunday, February 8, 2009

Happy Birthday Maddie!

I guess there is no avoiding it. Children grow up. Maddie turned 5 on the 4th, and yesterday she had her first "big girl" party. She got to choose the guests, they came bearing gifts, and thanks to the warmer weather of -6 degrees, they played outside! That was my favourite part!

Maddie, blowing out her 5 candles. On the first try, she left 3 still lit, so I yelled out, "Three boyfriends!" Everyone looked at me weird, so I guess that's not a custom they observe in this province. Just as well. She's not allowed to date until her thirties anyway! :P

The kids played "Tape the Parts on the Snowman", "Spray Paint the Snow" and sliding. They came inside for cake and icecream, opened presents, played in Maddie's room and gorged themselves on Sweet Tart Sour candy. Busy, busy, busy.

After all the excitement, Mad fell asleep with her new Glow Bear tucked under one arm. She'll always be my baby.

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

The Latest

You turn your back for TWO seconds, and the whole place falls apart. He's such a boy.

I think it's Love....sigh...

The snow was too deep for Graedon to play in, so we brought it inside.


The tab on the battery cover of our remote broke a while ago. Richard got tired of the batteries falling out, so he fixed that problem! Not with duct tape (man's best friend) - nope! With screws, à la Frankenstein. When we want to change the batteries, we just have to unscrew the screws. Ta da! Problem fixed.