Monday, January 30, 2012

family photo day

It is shameful but true, we have no family photos of us all together since CJ was born. We have planned for it, and in the life I dreamed for myself we had family photos often and they are all cool and fun and funky. In real life it is rare that all four of us make it into one frame all at the same time. It is even HARDER now because apparently at age five Max is TOO COOL to pose for a photo at all, let alone WITH people.

My mom is headed to Africa this week. She and her sisters will be visiting family in South Africa at the end of their humanitarian trip and they have put together a family tree - with a photo - of everyone on my grandmothers side of the family for my grand mothers brother. My mom took a photo of it and sent it to us and I was looking at it on my phone (its VERY COOL) and noticed that the pictures of MAx and CJ were actually just CJ. Once as a baby and one recent. I called my mom to make the change asap and we went into rapid fire photo and emailing sessions. I took a photo of Max and it was too big, so took another and sent that. Then she asked for a family photo (which we don't have) so we sat on the floor in our living room and had Max's friend who was staying over take photos with Shel's i-phone. We had to get him to take about 12 - some had people cut off and others were blurry and in the end we got two nice ones. This one I just posted is a little blurry, but it is a photo of all of us! It is nice to have one and we have now resolved to actually MAKE (and keep) an appointment with a photographer to get some nice family photos.

remind me why we do this again?

This weekend we had a foster girl from another foster home come to us for respite. We are STILL not "open" as a foster home, but respite providers do not have to be open foster homes. The little girl is a one year old who is cute as a button but TOTALLY different from our boys. She is quiet! She slept through the night! She is adorable and in love with the boys and they are just as "taken" with her.

Here's the thing with fostering. It is a HUGE PAIN! Don't get me wrong. I have loved the children who have come into our home. We have given our hearts and souls to the kids who have spent time with us and it has been a real heartbreaker. It has been impossible for us to "separate" ourselves from caring for the physical needs of the kids and keeping our hearts out of the equation.

BUT (here it comes).. There is SOOOOO much political GARBAGE that comes with the territory. For instance. The request for us to provide respite for the weekend came in a message to Shel on facebook from the other foster mother. She requested two nights respite from Friday to Sunday evening. The next thing that happens is Shel got a call from someone (I am not clear on who it was, I think the social worker) requesting directions to the house and letting her know the baby was coming on Thursday from an appointment. When the baby arrived on Thursday Shel was informed that she would be picking up the baby on TUESDAY for another appointment but this way it decreased the amount of times the baby would be "shuffled" between homes. You know, I get it. I don't think kids should be shuffled. The lack of communication DRIVES ME INSANE. After Shel get's all the details from the worker she gets a text from the foster mom asking if it is ok for the baby to stay until Tuesday. Through all of the back and forth we discovered that the plan between the current foster family, the social worker and the foster care worker is for us to provide respite for this little girl and to eventually take her into our home on a permanent basis. It would have been nice to have been consulted on the topic! THE SYSTEM IS WHACK people. WHACK.

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

It could only happen to me.

I had an appointment at the dentist today. In the spirit of trying to do things "differently" I did not cancel but actually went to my appointment.

I arrived, got settled, got my mouth numbed entirely on the bottom - both sides, and the dentist began working.

Getting needles in my mouth hurts me a lot. I am sure it hurts everyone but I think I have hypersensitive cheek nerves or something. When I get a needle it hurts right into my jaw and into my ears and I have such anxiety about it I can literally feel my heart pounding out of my chest. I try deep breathing. I try thinking of other things, but I have no luck in turning my attention to anything other than the stabbing pain in my mouth - aggravated by the dentist shaking my cheek (is that supposed to help or something?)

All of a sudden the dental hygienist says to him 'I have no water". He checked his water and had none. They went into other rooms and checked the water and there was none. The receptionist called the town office and was told that there was a water break and there would be no water for the rest of the day.

He came back into the room, covered up what he had started and sent me on my way to make an appointment to come back and finish when they had water again.

I got a trip to another town, a frozen mouth and another appointment. YAY ME! I have bad dentist karma.

Monday, January 23, 2012

things I am grateful for

I am trying to reframe my attitude. I have mentioned that last year really took a toll on me emotionally and my attitude suffered without a doubt. I NEED for this year to be a better year. I cannot control the things in life that happen around me, but I have to do something to hold onto my sanity.

I have always been a huge fan of the concept of gratitude. When I was super religious I had a favorite scripture from a speech King Benjamin gave to his people. King Benjamin was a great king and his people loved him. He erected a tower to talk to them and in his speech he said "And behold also, if I, whom ye call your king, who has spent his days in your service, and yet has been in the service of God, do merit any thanks from you, O how you ought to thank your heavenly King!"
I tried to make it a daily practise to "thank my Heavenly King".

Years have passed since I was that religious but I still believe that being grateful is important. I have a lot to be grateful for.

Last night I sat on the couch in our living room with my boys next to me. Max was watching a video about Wolves and CJ was playing a motorcycle game on his ipod. In the middle of playing his game, he stopped and leaned over and kissed me on the arm. I said "thanks for the kiss CJ" and he replied, eyes still on his game, "Welcome!"

Such a sweet, kind soul. My heart filled with gratitude for the beautiful family that I have.

Thursday, January 19, 2012

When it is -40 C

Winter arrived this week with a vengeance. We have had a SUPER mild year so far and so when the temperatures dropped to fourty below ( which is where the celcius and farenheit scales are the same for those of you wondering) we were not happy.
At work somehow (because how do topics ever come up at work I don't know) we started talking about what happens when you throw water outside when it is this cold.
Well R said that it evaporates immediately. I thought she was messing with the girl she was talknig to and told her she was full of B.S.
She insisted she was correct and so I went to the kitchen, got a cup of cold water and went outside and threw it into the air. Well nothing happened at all so I gave R "the look" which meant - you are a lying sack of @#$ and we came inside.
Determined to prove she was right she busted out the all knowing, all powerful, google search and lo and behold, if you BOIL water and THEN throw it outside the most amazing thing happens.
Kept us occupied for at LEAST a half hour!!
Enjoy :

Reading : Beauty and the Werewolf

I am reading so many books right now it is insane. I have not read like this for YEARS.
Because I have been in school. Am I done school you ask?
I am procrastinating and I have retreated from the world in the evenings after the boys are in bed and I am reading up a storm. I am not even watching television I am reading so much - and that says SOMETHING about my reading fo sho.
I just finished a book called Beauty and the Werewolf and I LOVED this book, probably because I like a good fairytale. It was part Little Red Riding Hood, part Beauty and the Beast. The female protagonist was smart, hardworking, kind and all around the kind of woman I like to read about. The woodsman and the Wolf were not at all what you would expect from the typical fairytale which was a nice, but predictable departure from the norm. The only thing in the book that was a bit of a distraction was that I figured out the plot early on and knew who was responsible for the spell cast on the Wolf - it bothers me that I am smarter than sorcerers, wise women and others with abilities beyond my own. If I can figure it out, why can't they? This seemed to me more of an adolescent read than an adult one but I really liked it just the same.

I read to "escape" from reality. I have in the past year begun to read science fiction and fantasy books which I had never read before because I was bored with the predictability of the mysteries I had previously devoured. I am enjoying my foray into these new (for me) genres, but there are some things which I have noticed which bother me.

I have yet to read ANY book in which a female character dresses herself in "male" clothing for comfort and functionality but in the process offends some of those she encounters. Compass directions are ALWAYS north, south, east and west which makes sense from the perspective that it gives the reader some frame of reference, but in other ways it is strange that in other worlds, in other times, there would be these exact same directions by the same name.

Another thing I have noticed is that when characters in books undertake any kind of travel, they ALWAYS have jerky and cheese. REALLY? I have read about dragons, witches, boggarts, gurgi, and all manner of other kinds of creatures, but there are ALWAYS cows and cheese - and jerky!

Friday, January 13, 2012

12 of 12: January 2012

Today was a very sad day in our home as our two year old great dane had to be put down for medical issues. We are devestated to lose him and wish we had options that would guarantee his health and not leave him in potential prolonged pain without guarantee of success.
Hugo has been a significant part of our lives and a blessing in the life of our boys. We will miss him more than words can tell.

When I got home from work this morning at about 1 am Max and Hugo had been sleeping together. Shel took this and sent it to me.
 Sitting on the couch before we left for the vet
 Checking out a squirrel in the tree with Shel. Where is a dane to sit if it isn't on the couch?
 CJ does not want his photo taken (after we got home from the vet CJ bit me!) It has been a long time - over a year since he has bitten. Poor kid is having a tough time tonight.
 Looking out the window as the boys go with the neighbours. Max kissed him "lots and lots" before he left.
 Trying to take a photo with Shel. She asked if I wanted one and I said no, and thought I might regret it. I already do.
 Sign on the wall in the vet office. According to this Hugo was already in his 20's although he did not act like it!
 Sign on the wall as we entered the vet office. I thought it was a funny sign, but I was looking for reasons to be distracted. It worked for about 7 seconds.
 Picking up the boys on the way home. CJ ran away from us so we picked him up as we drove away.
 We heard something under the car so got out to check what it was, but couldnt find anything. (The car was turned off while we all lay on the ground)
 The only thing we managed to put together for dinner. Didn't feel like much of anything.
Empty Bed.

The house was really quiet last night.
I hate today.

Friday, January 6, 2012

If I was...

  • If I was a month, I would be October - but only if I lived somewhere far enough south that the end of the month wasn't freezing cold like it is where we live currently.

  • If I was a day of the week, I'd be Thursday.

  • If I was a time of day, I'd be late at night probably around eleven thirty.

  • If I was an animal of the sea, I would be an angler fish.

    • If I was a direction, I'd be West.

  • If I was a planet, I'd be Mars.

  • If I was a piece of furniture, I'd be a recliner rocker.

  • If I was a sin, I'd be lust.

  • If I was a liquid, I'd be mercury.

  • If I was a gemstone, I'd be an Emerald.

  • If I was a tree, I'd be a Baobab.

  • If I was a bird, I'd be a Greater Painted Snipe .

  • If I was a tool, I'd be a leatherman, but the thought of being a "tool" makes me laugh a little.

  • If I was a flower, I'd be a Carrion Flower because it's just wierd - not because I smell like something dead.

  • File:Amorphophallus Wilhelma.jpg

  • If I was a material, I'd be cotton.

  • If I was a kind of weather, I'd be a Lightening Storm.

  • If I was a musical instrument, I'd be a didgeridoo.

  • If I was a colour, I'd be be green .

  • If I was a word, I'd be "Sussurus".

  • If I was an emotion, I'd be gratitude.

  • If I was a fruit, I'd be a leetchee.

  • If I was a sound, I'd be the laughter of my sons.

  • If I was a body part, I'd be hands.

  • If I was a song, I'd be LA Song (This was VERY HARD to decide!)

  • If I was an element, I'd be Tantalum.

  • If I was an auto-mobile, I'd be a

  • If I was a food, I'd be Thai Mango Sticky Rice

  • If I was a taste, I'd be Umami.

  • If I was a scent, I'd be vanilla.

  • If I was a place, I'd be Deception Pass State Park.

  • If I was a mammal, I'd be a 

  • If I was a phase of the moon, I'd be waxing gibbous.

  • If I was berry, I'd be a raspberry .

  • If I was a book, I'd be 'The Lorax" by Dr Seuss.

  • If I was story, I'd be ... wow. I don't know how to even answer this one. I have NO idea what story I would be.... Shoot. I have to think more about this one.
  • 2012

    I was more than happy to see the end of 2011. To put it mildly it was NOT a good year for us. As I sat down to compose a family letter for the holidays I was so discouraged with the happenings of the year that I eventually put the draft letter away and didn't finish it. Finding much to be grateful for was hard. I also noticed the impact it had on my blogging last year. Since I began blogging more than five years ago, last year I posted the least. I didn't want to fill my blog with the things in life that were going wrong, partly because it seemed too personal and partly because I didn't want my blog to be a complaining place that people avoided because it was such a downer.
    As 2011 drew to a close and 2012 dawned I was relieved. It was something concrete that allowed me to feel as though a chapter was closing and a more hopeful chapter was opening.
    Then on January 1 my grandmother passed away. On January 2nd we discovered that our two year old Great Dane puppy may have bone cancer. I've put my enthusiasm for the new year on hold again. I honestly don't know how I could survive another year like the last one.
    I am in such a mental slump I don't know how to get myself out of it.