Friday, December 26, 2008

Every new beginning comes from some other beginning's end

It feels like it has been a long, long while since I posted here. I've come by multiple times each day and I've had tons of posts whirring around in my head, but I couldn't bring myself to post. After everything that happened with Leah and then my parents leaving literally right after her funeral, Ive tried not to think about anything other than Christmas. Coming here and seeing Leah's picture or reading some of the posts about her made me feel like there was no point in writing anyway. The thing is that I've never really believed that and now that my Mom is gone, it is even more important for me to write.



In my 4th year women's studies class in university we discussed writing as a way to hash out what is in your brain or maybe to understand better something you've read. Since then Ive tried to write about anything that I seem to be struggling with and I think it helps me. I rarely plan what Im going to write in advance, except for maybe a topic, and whatever comes out is real. I try not to filter myself and that's why I stated flat out in one of my first posts that I will only write the full truth here. I don't like lies and I don't want to pretend to be something Im not. So I come here and I work out my thoughts and in the process I get to connect with all of you. You have all become very dear to me and I feel an obligation to continue to write my mundane thoughts about my mundane life. Guilt about this blog has become pretty normal lately and I think it is high time I change that.



So now that I am finding myself sitting at our new desktop computer on boxing day writing a post about my blog and what it means to me, I think it is fitting to finish with a list of my new years resolutions. After a whopper of a year (finishing school; loosing my car, house, boyfriend; having a baby with no father; moving three times; learning that The Ex is engaged again; Leah's passing and my parent's move across country) I am ready for some goals! I think that I am certainly in a better place emotionally that I was this time last year but everything else seems to be the same. Well, maybe not. I am living in a much better house than the hell-hole apartment that I was getting ready to move out of last year. So that's a plus. But I am still in a massive amount of debt, Im still alone, I've still got kids to raise and feed and clothe but now without really a job. I've grown on a personal level in ways that I never knew existed and I've been tried by hitting lows that I never thought I would experience. I think I've come out a better person for it, but with the year all said and done, I cant help but look at it as a year wasted.



So to 2009, I welcome you and everything you have to offer. To you I commit to achieving the following goals; albeit with much complaint, tears and/or alcoholic beverages:




  • Are you ready for it? This is a big one......ok, I am going to write one MILLION words this year. After having a successful NaNoWriMo it got me to thinking about writing and how much I enjoy it. I really, really suck at it but that's not the point for me. I plan to be home with the kids for at least half of 2009 so why not get to those books that Ive always wanted to write. I know now after November that fiction is definitely not the right avenue for my work but I have a few other projects that I'd like to tackle. Im sure you're doubting my ability to write a million words this year because well, like that's A LOT. But I have it all planned out you see. The writing will not only include books like NaNo did! No, I will be writing all sorts of things and if I start something, get a few thousand words in and decide I don't like it anymore? That is totally cool; those words will count. My blog posts will also get tacked on there as well as anything that I write on my new blog (that I plan to start, see below). So there you have it, ONE MILLION words by January 1 2010.

  • Cut my credit card debt in half. At the moment, I no longer use my cards but they sit at a balance of about 6300. Somehow this year I want to see that number much closer to 3000. I know that I wont be able to tackle my student loan debt this year and that is ok. Ive already changed a lot of bad habits and reversed my thinking so I know Im on the road to freedom from my debts, it's just a really, really long road. This Christmas, the kids are more than happy with their gifts and I don't feel any guilt about what I gave to anyone or about the people that I chose not to give to this year. I did it all this year without compromising my budget or going into anymore debt (actually that is a lie, I bought this computer back in August on credit and I'll be paying small monthly payments for three years). I think I am doing really good when it comes to my finances and 2009 will only help me to get further OUT of debt.

  • Find a boyfriend. Ok, so this one is pretty much self-explanatory. I hate being alone and I think I am at my best when I am in a relationship. I joined an Internet dating site about two months ago and I've been talking with a lot of people. There are a few prospects but I'm taking it slow. The two men that I've met in person from the site so far have wanted a relationship but I couldn't commit to that. I have reached a point with men where I refuse to settle. I obviously know that I will probably have to bend what Im looking for a bit but there are just some things that I can not give up. So I plan to end the year with a wonderful man doing something fun while we bring in 2010 together. Having that to look forward to makes this lonely New Years a lot more bearable.

  • Find a job. I have a degree so it shouldn't be that hard to find work. I don't really care at this point what I'm doing, the point is to just do something and start bringing in some money. I've continued to work very part time hours with a research project that Ive been assisting with for about two and a half years. I know that I will continue to be a part of this but its more of a freelance type thing and the pay Isn't even really something I'd call income because I have so few hours. After June or so though the project takes a turn and we will stop collecting data and start to process what it all means a little more. This means that there are lots of opportunities for writing projects and conferences to come out of it which is fine for a side thing but I cant rely on it in place of a real income.

  • Start my second degree. I know this one sounds kind of stupid considering I'll probably just be getting into a new job and I've got the four kids and enough debt already but I really do think I can manage. I've looked into this degree program from a university in another province that offers it through a distance option. I can either take it full time in two years or part time in three because I already have a degree. I also don't need to take out any more student loan debt because the cost of the courses is manageable if I do the part time route and Im working. So yes, September 2009: start another degree.

  • Find the joy that I used to experience from being a mother. I lost this years ago in the midst of my terrible relationship with The Ex and I want desperately to get it back. I think I am taking baby steps in that department but maybe another six months will be enough to really help?
  • Finally reach my target weight of 140. I made it as low as 161 a few months ago but since Halloween I haven't been able to get even close to that number again. At the moment Im probably closer to 170 but Im a little afraid to look at the scale. Either way, 30 lbs in a year is not that big of a deal if I am serious about it. This also ties in with the next one...
  • Stop f**king around and just join the damn Y already. Ive been there twice to get this process going but I never have all the right forms or whatever. I am seriously close to just forgetting about the subsidy and just paying the full dues anyway. But if I did that, then my goal up there of reducing my debt would be compromised. The difference by the way is $40/month which after a year would be $480 less debt to my name. Obviously the subsidy is the way to go here but I just have to get on that and get organised!
  • Start another blog. I don't want to get into the details about what this one will be about or anything yet, but know that it is in the works ;)
  • See a dentist. I honestly haven't been to a dentist in over a decade and my teeth are horrible. I never once had a cavity as a kid but I know that my mouth is full of them now. My wisdom teeth are also squishing the rest of my teeth together like something fierce and its to the point now that I don't open my mouth much. I know that this is going to be a big process and an even bigger expense so I haven't been in any rush but I do need to make it a priority.
  • Network with other moms and be more social. At the moment I really only talk with (make a point to see) family members. Ive never really been one to keep friends and I know that this probably isn't good for me because I tend to go within myself and shut others out when I have a problem. Social interaction is healthy and I need to put in the effort to include it more in my life.
  • Eat Better. Related directly to my weight is my consumption of pop(soda). If I stay away from it I tend to feel smaller and happy about my weight. Whenever I give in and start drinking it again, my clothes seem to get tighter and then I start to eat cookies or chocolate and we all know how that ends. I also have the issue of possible glaucoma when Im older and so taking the steps (ie reduce sugar intake) now can prevent that from happening. The last time I had my eyes checked (about a year ago; ugh, add that to the list) the cups were a 4 with 10 meaning blindness. I have no idea what any of that really means except that I would prefer not to go blind, ya know?
  • Get organised. I know that I am happier, life runs smoother and I spend less money when I am organised and have a plan for things. If I take the time to plan my meals and my grocery list, I spend a good bit less at the grocery store. This Christmas I was able to buy lots of good presents because I started a long time ago and didn't succumb to the lure of the toy stores in December. My desk has also been a complete disaster since we moved in to this house so I think it is high time to organise all my papers and various junk. Over the last few years I've done really good with getting rid of things that I don't need around and de-cluttering our home so I plan to continue that and hopefully in a years time I wont be sitting here with a list of boxes/closets/drawers/rooms that need to be cleaned out or organised.

Ok, that is all that I can think of right now. There may be more and I may end up adding to the last over the next week but for now, this is where it stands. What about all of you, what are some of your goals for the coming year?

Friday, December 19, 2008

Second Try

This morning I meant to write a nice post about Leah that celebrated what a wonderful person she was. Instead I ended up being very negative and I really shouldn't have been. Leah was never negative and was always happy and smiling. I feel really bad now complaining about not being able to get any help when duh, she's dead. Im sure there are a lot of people out there worried about a lot bigger things then what I am and I forgot that for a moment.

So as a bit of a do-over, I just wanted to post what the priest said of Leah today at her funeral. He knew her well from all of her work at the church, so I feel confident in his perception. He called Leah a cross between Mother Theresa and Lady Diana. I don't think I need to say anything else about the type of person that Leah was and will forever be remembered as, this says it all.

Celebrating a Life

Today is Leah's funeral. I cant go because there is no one to watch the kids. Im feeling really upset about this and Im finding myself snapping at the kids almost constantly. I wasn't able to go to Leah's benefit concert before she left for her surgery, then I couldn't make any of the times for the viewings and now I cant make her funeral. I am so sick of things like this! People say things about feeling like they are a single parent because their spouse is gone a lot of the time or whatever but the truth is, most of the time you will have someone to help out. I have no one. I come from a family that would do anything for each other, no matter what. My brothers, parents and I would drop what we are doing to help the other one out, if something comes up. We do not expect anything in return and we just do it because we care about each other. It was a big shock and something I still have to remind myself of, when I realised that most of this world does not operate like this.

Its a f***ing funeral and I don't have a single person in my life that is willing to help out. This is why I do not keep friends; I probably expect too much out of them, but to me a friend is someone who is there when you need them. I would do anything for anyone. A few days ago I dragged my sick ass off the couch, packed three kids into the car and drove someone across town because they had an important meeting to get to and their car broke down. This person? I had never before met them in my life and only knew them from talking online. This is who I am and how I think people should act. Why the hell cant I find someone else out there that cares enough about other people to act like that towards me? The Ex just blocked me from facebook when I sent him a msg asking for help for today.

Its crazy because Leah is exactly the person that would have gone out of her way to help anyone that needed it. She spent so much of her life volunteering and just helping wherever she could. The world needs more more people like Leah Walsh! I found out yesterday that right before she went into her surgery, she told her parents that she had a will on her computer. It wasn't finished because Im sure it was too hard for her to get into, but what she did write was beautiful and only about the good in this world. She wrote to her friends at school about how wonderful they all were and that their differences were nothing and that they should all just get along. Then she wrote a little to her teachers telling them that they did make a difference and that their work was appreciated. She also included a paragraph to the children's wish foundation about what an amazing support they had been over the years. That is as far as she had gotten before she left, but wow. This girl was dying and she cared so much about her friends and teachers that she wanted to write them encouraging messages like that before she left.

We've also learned that my brother proposed to Leah before she left and even though no one knew, he says that she said yes. The day before Leah died, my brother bought her engagement ring and then a few nights ago he gave it to her dad. By the time of the viewing the next day, they had put it on her hand. I think it meant a lot to my brother that her parents accepted how much he and Leah meant to each other, even though they were so young. She is being cremated, so the ring will come off and Leah's mom promised Sam that she will wear it in Leah's memory.

There have just been so many sad, yet wonderful things come up this last week. I have so many little things that Id like to write about but I cant even remember all of them. She was just an amazing girl. My family has some kind-of out there ideas about life and spirituality so Im sure that colors how I see things. I also know that many of you will not share the same ideas so I am hesitant to write freely and openly. I've decided though to just be true to my own beliefs and hope that you will respect them.

Anyway, so Leah was born and immediately they found that she had something wrong with her heart. She was flown right away to Montreal and had her first heart surgery at 18 days old. At the time, they knew nothing of her condition. Every day was a miracle with little Leah and the doctors did everything they could. After this last surgery, her surgeon (the same one that she has had all of her life) came out and apologized to Leah's parents. Her mother instead thanked him for the 17 years that he had given them with their daughter. Without him, Leah probably wouldn't have lived for very long. But also without Leah, the doctors wouldn't have learned as much as they had. Her surgeon told her parents that from what they learned from Leah, thousands of people will be saved. How amazing is that?

Leah's poppy was the only one to pass away in her family up until this point. He actually died at Christmas time himself. Anyway, a few weeks before Leah left, her Poppy started to come into her dreams. Then when she would come in and out of consciousness at the hospital, she would tell her parents that her Poppy had told her it was going to be ok. She said that he was there at the foot of her bed and so her family is taking great comfort in knowing that she is with her Poppy now; a man that she loved so much.

Ugh, I don't even know why Im writing all of this. Its real and its whats in my head at the moment but there isn't really any point to any of it. The funeral is today, in an hour and I so wish I could be there for Sam as he carries the coffin of his first girlfriend out of the church. Immediately after that, my parents have to leave for their move just because they are completely out of time and have to rush as it is. They cant even stay for the reception afterwards because they have to make the ferry departure time. One of my other brothers will be there today with Sam and I just hope that will be enough support for him. I am completely messed up about all of this and I have no idea how he is holding up. I know that he feels honored that God chose him to be the one and only boyfriend to this special girl, and that God only gives us what we can handle. I also know that Leah wouldn't want us all to be upset about this and that she would be the one trying to comfort everyone if she was here.

Rest in Peace Leah, you will be missed.

If you would like to read some of the things that people have wrote to Leah and her family, you can visit the facebook group Prayers for Leah Marie Walsh

Monday, December 15, 2008

100th post

My posts lately have been very, very sad. I haven't been thinking about much other than Leah so its been hard to even come up with anything to write. You're words and thoughts meant so much to me though and I want to thank all of you for them. Leah passed away Friday night with her family. We don't know when the funeral will be but I imagine it will be in a few days.



My brother is impossible to read. He seems mostly normal but you can tell that there is this massive amount of anger, just under the surface. Im worried about him and I really think he should go up north with my parents when they move now after the funeral. I don't know how he can continue with his normal life with all of that emotion that is so obviously there. My heart goes out to him.




My family decided to go ahead with our Christmas party that we had originally planned for today. We cancelled it when my parents changed their moving plans so that they could make the stop to see Leah in Montreal. There was certainly a sad note to it all but we were able to get together one last time and enjoy each other's company. My camera was dying so I don't have many pictures myself, but my SIL sent me a couple:

My mom and I

The kids and I

Friday, December 12, 2008

Leah has taken a turn for the worst and they have taken her off of life support. My parents were about two hours away from here on their way to bringing my brother to see her when they got the call. They spent the next hour on the side of the road while my brother made the decision not to try to get to her (it would take two days because we live on an island) and instead come home and say goodbye at her funeral. Thank you to everyone who kept Leah and her family in your thoughts and prayers.

Thursday, December 11, 2008

No change

Leah with Josiah shortly after he was born
I wish I had some good news about Leah. The truth though is that there hasn't been much of a change these past few days. My brother is most likely leaving tomorrow to hopefully get to Montreal by Saturday night so that he can have a chance to say good bye. We are hoping that it would only end up being a chance to see her, but it is possible that it will be a good bye.

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Apparently Ive got booty!


The Muddled Sage gave me an award! She had two on her blog and at first I didn't know which one she was giving me but after a bit of research I decided to take this one just because there are no rules. I gave most of my blogroll an award the last time one came around so Im not going to do it again. Instead, Ill just selfishly accept this lovely piece of bloggy bling and give nothing in return. Wow, that sounds bad! I promise I don't mean it that way. :)

Sunday, December 7, 2008

Update

Leah isn't expected to make it.

On Friday, when I wrote my last entry, Leah had a heart attack. Her body is full of toxins because of the kidney failure, so they have some sort of tube in her stomach to help remove some of it. Other than that, we do not know anything else about her condition.

My mom went to talk with Leah's grandmother today and found out some more details that we didn't know before. Because my brother was so young they didn't want to tell him that Leah only had a week to live when she left for her surgery. It was to the point that they couldn't not do it because she was having heart failure every couple of days. Anyway, her grandmother today said that it looks so bad that we probably wont see her again before her funeral. As I write those words, Im just blown away by them. Not since I was a small child have I had one of my peers die and Im so shaken up over this. She is still here, and she is hanging on so we need to keep up hope.

My brother's boss offered to pay for a flight for him to Montreal to see her but my parents declined the offer because we don't know anyone there other than Leah's parents. With a dying daughter they don't need to be worried about my brother and where he would sleep and all that. So instead we are hoping that she will at least hang on until next week when my parents can drive my brother there. They leave on Sunday for their move anyway and planned to go right through Montreal so as long as she can hold on, my brother will at least get to see her one more time. Oh my God, One more time? How can this even be?

I remember when my grandmother died I spent a long time afterwards hoping that everything was a dream and that I would wake up and she would still be here (I was 8). I feel the same way now. Oh God, please let her come home.

Friday, December 5, 2008

We need your help




My youngest brother is 17 and is involved with his first girlfriend Leah. Leah has an extremely rare heart condition where only three people have been diagnosed with it. The other two didnt make it past the first few years of life and Leah wasnt supposed to either. Despite all odds she has thrived and led a mostly normal life.




A couple months ago, she flew to Montreal for some heart tests which revealed that she needed another surgery. Her pacemaker had to be replaced and there was something else too, but I dont know the details. Anyway, she flew back a couple weeks ago for her surgery and has been in an induced coma ever since. Her heart has just not been strong enough to handle waking her up yet.




Yesterday Leah's kidneys failed and he had to have her heart shocked three times last night. Her sister flew up last night as well to join her parents and be with Leah. My brother was just told this morning and I havent spoken with him yet. I know he loves this girl so much. Leah is just the sweetest most precious girl you could ever meet and this is really hitting everyone hard. We dont know if she will hang on much longer.




Please pray or whatever it is you believe in for Leah and her family. Pray that she makes it through and that her heart becomes strong enough to let her have a normal life again. Im just trying to believe and trust in God, but Im also feeling very low right now.
Those pictures were taken when Leah left for the airport to go have her surgery.

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Christmas DVD Giveaway

This is again a shameless attempt at a second entry into Mommy Daisy's contest for a Jim Henson Christmas DVD. So everyone follow that link and go enter!!!! The contest closes tomorrow so hurry, hurry!

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

And the Winner is....!!!!

Random Integer Generator
Here are your random numbers:4
Timestamp: 2008-12-03 04:22:33 UTC

Which means Astarte wins my PIF!!! SO Astarte get in touch with me at cherishblog@gmail.com with your address and Ill get it sent to you in time for xmas!!!

Sunday, November 30, 2008

Ive made it...almost

Once I hit publish on this post I will have successfully finished NaBloPoMo. As for NaNoWriMo, I still have about 6500 words left to write. I have wrote over a thousand words since yesterday morning so I think I still have it in me, but I am down to 6.5 hours left. The kids will be in bed and should be asleep in a few hours leaving me with 3.5 hours to write 6.5k. I sure am cutting this close.

I was going to post when I finished so that I could say that I was successful for all of my challenges this month, but Im honestly not sure if I will make it and I didnt want to take any time away from my writing closer to mid night.

As for my 15 minutes/day of moving more, I have been keeping up with it and finding some really neat ways to do it. The other day, I boxed with the kids on the Wii....so much fun!!

See you on the other side

Saturday, November 29, 2008

Hmm, there's not much left to talk about

..so why not do a PIF?!
This is what I receieved in the mail the other day:

I won this PIF a few months ago and even though the lady that sent it has emailed me a few times, I've lost the link to her blog :( I dont think it would be right to reveal her real name from the postage either, so hopefully she will come by and leave her name in the comments. But thank you mystery lady, I love the gift!

So now onto my PIF!!! To enter just leave a comment about your favorite Christmas family tradition on this post before Tuesday (Dec 2) evening-ish. I havent bought the PIF prize yet but I am thinking it will probably be something to do with the upcoming holidays.

PIFs are so much fun! yay!

And just because I clicked on the wrong picture and dont know how to remove them, here is another one of Josiah in his crib...

Friday, November 28, 2008

Just made it

I am so close to the finish line and I cant believe I almost forgot to post tonight. I usually leave a window open with my blog in it to remind me but even that didnt work tonight. Ive been so busy with trying to get my word count for the novel (17900 to go!) that I havent had much chance to write anything. Rayden has been sick all day too and is actually sitting beside me right now (its really late) watching some little kid show. He just cant sleep. Ugh, I need this day to end. So goodnight all!

Thursday, November 27, 2008

More Firsts

A few weeks ago, Josiah had cereal for the first time. It was a Saturday evening while the other kids were with their dad and Josiah and I were visiting my parents. I wanted to share the moment with someone and since my parents are leaving in a couple weeks, I thought this would be a good time. The date was the 15th so Josiah would have been 4 months and 6 days at the time. Since then he has had it mostly every other evening because he just gets sleepy suddenly so I have to put him down without his cereal.

This picture was his very first bite, with my mom holding him. He did really well, except that I made it too runny and had a hard time keeping it in his mouth! Even now though, he goes nuts when we run out at the end of the feeding just because he wants more. This kid likes to eat!

I freecycled Josiah's bassinet last week and Ive gotten a little sick of him always sleeping in my bed or the swing, so I put together his crib today. This is his first time in it and I don't think he was really sure what was going on because I had just gotten him up from a nap.
But then he laughed and giggled and everything was good. Hes doing really well now with just about everything. His schedule is pretty set and I can tell what he wants most of the time when he is upset. He can play for a few minutes at a time either in his playpen, jumpy (exersaucer), or bouncy chair. He likes to sit in the kitchen with me while I cook and chew on my measuring spoon set or his keys or whatever his little hands can get on.
Im getting a little sick of the breastfeeding but I don't feel like Ive given it enough of a chance yet to actually think about giving up. I have a can of formula as back up if I ever need it, but as of yet, I haven't. Id like to get to a year with the breastfeeding, but Im not sure that will happen. As long as I keep thinking about the cost of formula, I think Ill be fine though.
Anyway, I just want to say Happy Thanksgiving to all of my American friends out there. I hope your day was relaxing and absolutely wonderful!

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

fifteen minutes

I have taken Mommy Daisy up on her challenge to get moving for an extra 15 minutes every day from now until the end of the year. I don't really make a point to move each day as it is, so Im starting from the basics here. Today I ran up and down the stairs for awhile and then danced around with Rayden. It was fun and he thought I was a goof. I don't think it will be too hard to do because it is only fifteen minutes but just thinking of something to actually do will be the issue for me.

In other news, Ive been working on the Novel (5 more days to write 21 000 words, eek!) and Im writing a lot about dating. Now I was going to have something really big happen with the current guy character but I didn't know what. I was going to have him die or cheat or something, but I just couldn't figure it out. Now though after the email from M, Im finding myself wanting to make this character pay. I am totally transferring my personal life into this novel and its turning out kind of funny. The guy character that Im doing this with was never meant to be a big part in the novel but he is turning out that way so I think he is going to disappear sooner than he wants. I just have to think of a really fun way to get rid of him. I only have so much more time to fit in another big guy character and I need this one out of the way first. Maybe this stuff with M came at a good time! Writing a book is exciting!

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

How I have spent the last hour

I just got an email reply from M. I sent him one last night after a short msn conversation yesterday afternoon. This is the email he sent today:

"I'm sorry, you're not going to like this but not long after I returned home I was set up on a blind date by a couple of mutual friends of mine and hers. We hit it off and have been on a date since and have plans to go out again on Wednesday. Albeit neither one of us wants to rush into a relationship, I cannot deny that I am dating. Where this goes I don't know its too early to tell for either of us but I have no interest in seeing anyone else.

I don't know how to say this without coming off harsh but I have to be honest I don't think we have a chance even if I wasn't dating someone now. I don't know what it is, I just don't have that feeling for you at least not the way you do for me. I thought I did once but I know we're not meant to be."


The first thing I did when I read this was cry. Then I called my mom and talked for an hour. Now Im here...and that's pretty much the order that I deal with everything in lately.

I want to be upset and mad almost but I know that is silly. His message was very direct like I asked him to be but it still stung. I had a suspicion that he was seeing someone and I wanted to know for sure...and now I know. What more do I want? Im upset that he told me he had the same feelings for me but never really did. I've known that there was no chance anymore with him but I didn't want to give up hope. There is no getting around it now. He very clearly does not want to be in a relationship with me anymore.

Wow, how did I turn into 'that' girl?

I can feel the love!

How cool is it that Amanda gave me an award?

So neat!

The Rules:

1. Put the award up on your blog

2. Add a link to the person who awarded it to you

3. Nominate at least seven other blogs

4. Add links to these blogs on your blog

5. Leave a message for your nominee on their blog

Nominees:

The Muddled Sage

The Creamery

Swistle

Mommy Daisy

Miss Grace's Disgrace

Indigo Girl

Complimentary Chocolate

Autobiography of a Material Girl

I know that's eight but I just couldn't choose! There were so many more to do too..

Monday, November 24, 2008

questions

What do you do when you find the man of your dreams, only to find out that he doesnt want you? M is everything Ive ever wanted in a man and yet he does not want to be with me. I feel the same way about this situation as I do about having a daughter; It just doesnt seem right, or possible. I thought that my wanting a daughter so badly and having four kids would kind of mean that I would have a daughter. I still dont understand why I will never be allowed that. Growing up, I just assumed I would meet my Mr. Wonderful and we would be together. Since then Ive been through a few really bad relationships so I knew that the fairy tale was actually a fairy tale but I still never thought that I would be in this situation. How can a guy that seems so right for me be so wrong?

Everyone else that I have ever dated has had some good things and some bad things and I had to decide what was important to me and what I didnt mind giving up. M has everything though. He is seriously perfect for me except that he doesnt love me. I just dont understand how that can be. Ive blamed myself for every little mistake Ive made over the last year since I met him and wondered what I did wrong. But that is silly. I know it's silly to think that Ive done something wrong. Most likely Im just not the person he is looking for, and not that there was something I actually did.

Ugh, I know Im rambling, but this is the kind of stuff that goes through my head when I think about him. And I think about him a lot. Knowing that he is back in town now scares me a bit too. What the hell am I going to do if I run into him? Man, I am not good at this stuff. I just keep asking myself, or God or whatever why this is my life? Why cant I have it easy and just have this man love me? Just Why?

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Christmas Cards

Ive been playing with a few different poses for our Christmas cards this year but most of them aren't working out very well. We decorated our tree yesterday and Ive put up a few other things around the house today so since the house was looking so festive, I wanted to try to get a good picture. Here are some of the rejects, and one of just Josiah in his Santa suit:

Saturday, November 22, 2008

A Second Chance

Ive been thinking about this post for the last few weeks but I haven't been able to actually pull my thoughts together enough for them to make sense. I'm not even sure how to put into words what I've been thinking, really. The thing is that I think I'm finally feeling like myself again after years of just ...what? living? Somehow that doesn't seem to fit, but its the closest that I can come up with.

A few months back I wrote a post about feeling very overwhelmed in my life to the point of not wanting to be a mother anymore. Since then, Ive been able to refocus on my kids and my self and I think we've learned a new way to live. Before I would scream and yell more often than Id like to admit, I was physically rough with my kids, I would cry at random and I had very little ability to cope with any change. Looking back, I don't know how I actually came back from such a state.

I think between my being over worked with school, work, kids and trying to make a broken relationship work, I got lost in it all and ended up just barely holding on. Then The Ex and I separated and I eventually learned to get used to that. Last November I found out I was expecting Josiah and that his dad was a loser. In April I lost my car; the end of May, I lost my boyfriend; and in June I lost my house. Come July I gave birth to my fourth child while living at my parents house. Its no wonder that I reached my ledge and quite frankly, I almost jumped.

Today I actually enjoy being a mom again. I'm still single and being alone is really difficult, but I'm not letting that get in the way of my happiness. I don't overly book myself with activities and things to do, but I keep myself challenged so I don't feel like I'm just wasting time. I still get overly upset sometimes but it happens way less and its not as bad as it used to be. I'm just happy that Ive gotten this chance in my life to stop and be still for awhile with my boys. I can only hope that I've learned enough from this last couple of years so that things only get better from here.

Friday, November 21, 2008

Another way in which I suck

If you take a little look over there to the right you may notice that my NaNo word count is a little low. Here it is 3 weeks in and Ive only written 17 000 words. There are 9 days left to write and I have to come up with 32 000+ words in that amount of time. I think I can still do it but it puts more pressure on me than I wanted when I first started this.

My problem is that I have started four separate novels over the last three weeks. One of them is only about a page or so in and I decided that it just wasn't coming out right, so I left it. The other two that I have abandoned, were great stories but they were just kind of hard to write. This last one that I am working on now actually has a lot of potential and it is surprisingly easy to write. I wrote 4200 words in two hours the other day and it didn't seem like anything. I also keep a notebook with me so whenever Im stuck waiting for something I start writing a scene that I think will be coming up soon. Then when I get the chance to write, I have somewhere to start off with.

So far, this last story is working out really well . I just hope that I can find enough time to sit down and type it over the next nine days to hit my 32 000. Wish me luck!

Thursday, November 20, 2008

budgeting with no income

So at the moment Im not working and I have no spouse to help bring in any money. Ive got the four kids to support and a huge mountain of debt. How the hell do I handle that?

First of all my numbers (kinda):
Im not actually going to tell the internet the actual dollar amounts of my budget, but percents should work.

Housing, including all related bills 50%
Food 18%
Car 8%
Debt Repayment 12%
Everything else 2%

The housing is high, I know but when you're poor there isn't much you can do. You all know the difficulty I` had in even finding a house so I don't mind paying the extra just to have a place to live.

The food is killing me and I with I could cut this down further, but I don't really know how.

My car is quite low because I don't have a car payment and I try not to drive much. Gas in Canada is a lot more expensive than it is in the US so it can cost me up to $60/week when the prices are high and I have a lot of errands to do. I enjoyed a nice $27 this past week though!

The debt repayment number only includes my minimum payments on my credit cards and payments to two other major debts. This does not include any payments to my almost $80 000 in student loan debt.

Everything else has to cover birthdays/xmas/emergencies/whatever. Trust me 2% of my very limited monthly budget is not much.

So how about you, is my budget startlingly different? Have any ideas on how I can make it work a little better, or better yet how I could get some more damn money?

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

tagged

Mommy Daisy tagged me for a six random things meme. Ive done one of these recently but since its NaBloPoMo, Im not going to pass up a chance at a topic. I don't have too many readers anyway so Im not going to bother tagging the same people again, but if you want to do it consider yourself tagged.

1. I let my kids watch way too much tv. When I first got my own place, I decided that I wouldn't have a tv but my dad brought me one about 6 years ago. Since then the kids and myself have become almost addicted to the darn thing with it being on from the time we get up until at least when the kids go to bed. I try to turn it off or at least mute it in the evenings so that Im not sucked in to some stupid show and waste my evening. It has gotten so bad that Chris cried today when I sent him to go play with his toys instead of watching tv. How horrible is that?

2. I love getting mail. It doesn't matter if its through regular old snail mail or email, I still love getting it.

3. I go through cycles of loving peanut butter to hating it. I end up eating so much of the stuff that I get sick of it and don't touch it again for months. Then the cycle starts again. Right now, Im starting to get sick of it and hopefully Ill be giving it up soon because nothing can add inches to your hips like a spoonful of peanut butter.

4. I love to sleep. My bed is my favorite place in my entire house and yet I almost never make it. I have way more sheets/blankets/pillows then I'll ever need and yet I never bother to actually fix them and make them look nice each day. I cant think of many things better than getting into a crisp and cool, freshly made bed. I know, its weird

5. I went to school for 6 years (16 consecutive semesters) and still feel like Im incapable or under qualified to work. There is a guy in my local NaNo group that works as a graphic designer. He has had zero training in it and just picked it up because it was "funsies," as he called it. I on the other hand spent $30 000 to get a diploma in the field and then worked all of about maybe 50 hours in it since I graduated 4 years ago. Ive designed a web site for my mom that I was never paid for and then my university student's group hired me to make up a few logos. If I had stuck with it, Im sure I could be doing a lot more of it right now and make more money staying home with the kids. Of course though, I let it totally slide and now I don't think Id remember enough to do much with it.

6. I love my eyes and my lips. Ive never really thought of myself as pretty but those are the two features that Ive always been ok with. Well, except for when I take off my glasses, then all I can see are my dad's eyes on my face...that's just weird.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Another giveaway

I know that most of you probably already read Mommy Daisy but since I have very little else to write about tonight, I thought I'd link to her latest DVD Giveaway and in return earn a second entry. You never know, it was the second entry that won me the Thomas DVD last time!

This particular contest is for A Shaun the sheep DVD which is a spin off of sorts from the Wallace and Grommit movies. My kids love those movies and so I thought it would be a good one for them, and maybe for your kids too!

So go now and enter! Hurry because the contest closes tomorrow!

Monday, November 17, 2008

The state of the boob

I didn't realise until after I read all your comments on my last post that I didn't give any sort of an update on my boob. After two days of being really careful to make sure that Josiah drained it as often as possible, I didn't wear anything tight and that the lump was actually going away; everything cleared up. The fever and headache lasted until Friday/Saturday-ish and the lump was gone Thursday. The pain left somewhere in there too, but I don't remember when.

Its crazy but Wednesday night I was actually afraid to go to sleep because I kept picturing Josiah screaming beside me for hours and me not waking up because of the fever. Or what it I actually died and the kids just thought I was sleeping the next morning and just left me there while they played until someone happened to come by! Man, my thoughts were a little crazy that night I tell you. But all is well now and hopefully that will be the last time I go through boob related illnesses.

Sunday, November 16, 2008

wednesday: the day from hell

Wow. Ive been a cheat lately. Those last like 5 posts were a whole lotta nuttin' and now I feel a bit embarrassed to have posted them. I wanted to post every day for NaBloPoMo but with this killer week that Ive had there was just nothing left of my brain. Sorry. Moving on...

Wednesday morning I had to go write this big test for a job that I had applied for with the federal government. Obviously a government job would be nice because they pay well and there are benefits and whatever plus this particular one has summers off. So even though Josiah is only 4 months old, I thought I would try for it anyway and see what happens. So ya, back to the Wednesday morning. I got everyone up an hour earlier than we normally would and got everyone ready and out to the car. We didn't eat breakfast because I thought that since it was early enough we could grab some bagels or something from a drive though without having to worry too much about line ups. Problem was though that we got about 10 minutes away when I realised that I had forgotten Josiah's milk that I had expressed for the babysitter to give to him. After turning around to get it, we ended up being 20 minutes behind schedule, making the line ups and traffic that much worse.

Anyway, it was all going to work out (just barely) when I pulled into my brother's driveway only to have my car completely die. It wasn't like it just quit or whatever, I mean like all power going anywhere was gone. So in a panic I ran into my brother's house to get him to see what he could do with it and deposit two of the four children. After much trying, my brother just gave up and handed me his car keys so I could make it to the test and he would catch a ride to work. That was obviously so nice of him and way beyond anything he needed to do for me. I was grateful. But I still only had 15 minutes to get there (20 minute drive) and two kids to deposit with my mom. I also had to pick up some papers that were to be photo copied and brought with me.

Ya'll still with me? Ok. So I convinced my mom to come meet me at the test centre with my papers and she can take the kids from there, saving me a trip out of my way. I get there with like 2 minutes to go and she pulls in after me, only without my photo copied papers. Well, let me just tell you that I was not a pretty sight at that moment. I cried and generally just lost it. The stress of the morning was catching up with me and the papers were just the last straw. Anyway my mom convinced me to go in and see if they would let me write the test anyway and she would come back with the papers after she dropped the kids off at school. Thankfully they were ok with that inside and I went on to write the test in only 2 of the 4 hours. Again with the family member going above and beyond what they needed to do that day for me.

So after all that was said and done, I was still without a car and had to wait at my brother's house for most of the day until my dad could give me a ride home. When we got back to my house though, I realised that my house key was still with my car key back at my brother's house. OMG all the way back to his house we went; Im not sure if Ive mentioned this but he lives about 20 minutes away. So ya that sucked. But I got home with all the kiddies, spent about an hour trying to tidy it a bit and get at the mountain of laundry (that had piled up from the previous week of being sick) done. Rayden got dropped of from school by my mom and I started to make supper. For some reason though I started to get really cranky while making supper, it was like I had just had enough of that day and so I was taking it out on the kids and the fact that they needed me. I hate it when I get like that. I know that Im being stupid about it and that its not their fault that they need to be fed/changed/consoled/whatever at that moment, but I still do it. Argh!

By the time we were finished with supper though I found myself on the couch with like zero energy and I started to realise I was sick. I was freezing, light sensitive, tired, irritable, achy, had a head ache and my boob was killing me. Thinking about it I realised that I had had all those symptoms since that morning but they had just gotten worse and worse without me understanding that I was sick. That was until it hit me horribly and it was all I could do to get the two little ones to bed. I sent the older two to bed an hour early just because I couldn't stand the sound of their voices anymore. Nice, hey? It was a little after this point that I updated you all on the state of my fever and boob before passing out at 9 with a fever of 106.8.

So ya, that was the end of a very long, very crappy day. I am so happy that it is over and that we all survived it. I don't know how I did on the test yet but my car is fixed and in my driveway again. The house is cleanish but I still have a mountain of laundry to do. The week continued like that but Im still recuperating and cant get much more than that out of my head.

Saturday, November 15, 2008

What the hell am I supposed to write?

Um ya, Melissa and I are sitting here doing nothing really but eating junk food and chatting. Be back tomorrow for that long awaited ACTUAL post.

Friday, November 14, 2008

...

Ive been so busy this week that I barely have enough time to collect my thoughts let alone write one. Tomorrow the kids go with their dad for the evening and even though I was supposed to have a party, Ive cancelled it. So that just means that Ill be spending the evening on my computer working on my Nano novel which is dangerously behind schedule. Hopefully Ill actually get a post out during the 23 hours they are gone!

Thursday, November 13, 2008

sick, boobs, stuff

Dont you just love NaBloPoMo? I was laying here on the couch yesterday feeling like death and trying to figure out what to write! So thats why you all got that lovely message about the state of my boob. To keep with the theme of things, Im still not going to do a real post today, but instead Ill just ramble a little. Enjoy.

My temp went as high as 106.8 last night but I refused to go through the process of getting a babysitter and going into the emergency room. So instead I took tylenol and kept a warm cloth on my boob to keep it draining. I think I was able to avoid a full blown infection though because today I am much better. I still feel like Im going to fall over at any minute but Im surviving.

Yesterday was a heck of a day, even before the whole boob pain thing but Ill have to update about that tomorrow. Right now I have to tend to Josiah who is awake AGAIN! I just need a little time to sleep today but its just not happening.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

104.6

I think I have an infection in my breast

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Contests and such

Mommy Daisy is having another Dvd give away so before you do anything else go and enter

Melissa is asking what everyone thinks of her idea for a PIF so go check that out too

And as for me, the plain white box will finally be mailed tomorrow because all of the kids will be with babysitters for awhile and I have to drive right past a post office. Woo hoo for finally getting this taken care of! I got am email last night from a lady whose PIF I won back a few months ago and she just sent my package off yesterday too! So now when that arrives Ill be able to do another PIF myself and Im thinking it would be silly to do anything but a Christmas theme.

On another note, Im getting ready to send out my xmas cards (and by getting ready I mean I still need to buy them, get pictures done, and compile my list of addresses) and Id like to send them out to you guys too. I don't know if that seems a little weird but I think it would be fun. So if anyone is interested in receiving an xmas card from moi send me a quick message with your address to cherishblog@gmail.com

Monday, November 10, 2008

More random thoughts brought to you by NaBloPoMo

I have this insane need to always be working on something new, even though Ive almost always got too much going on as it is. This week alone, I have a 4 hour test for a government job that I applied for, Michael's 2 year old development check and my girl's night party. On top of that, Im trying to squeeze in extra time with my parents, clean up the yard, get a bunch of stuff with my car fixed, switch Josiah to a crib, arrange a big family picture with 15 people, catch up my NaNo word count and post here everyday. That's a lot of things to keep straight in my head when Im here changing yet another diaper or wrestling with my four year old to eat his supper.


If I didn't have all this going on though, I would feel like I was wasting my life away. Im used to being busy and even though Im taking this year off (or less, cross fingers!!), I don't actually want to take it off. I have no idea how people do actually take time off and do nothing.


So anyway, what I wanted to get at was that Im so busy all the time doing so much crap that Im here writing thousands of words every day for NaNoWriMo and NaBloPoMo(um, and msn...) using this:

This is my 14 month old laptop that is missing no less than 6 buttons. Many, many more have been ripped off but they were easily re-attached. These 6 however could not be fixed and Ive been typing like this for months. Im missing both shift keys, "g", caps lock, "\", and backspace. SSSSOOOO, whenever you see a capital letter or a G, remember my broken little keyboard and how hard it is to type on!

Sunday, November 9, 2008

NaBloPoMo

Is everyone else enjoying this little treat of NaBloPoMo and all those people who keep updating their blogs on the weekend? Ive got a few favorite blogs that don't tend to update as often as Id like to read them and so imagine how tickled I was today to find that two of them had posted! Both Linda and Julia are amazing writers and I just cant seem to get enough of their blogs. I read them everywhere they write and Im always excited to get a new post in my reader.

I found both of these amazing women by way of other favorite bloggers Swistle and Linda, respectively. Im wondering now though what other awesome blogs Im missing simply because I haven't found them yet. With so many out there to explore, how do I ever read them all?

So my question to you is who do you read? What are the blogs that you just cant live without or that you think the whole world needs to read? Id love to find some more, even if I cant keep up with my blogroll as it is!

Saturday, November 8, 2008

I really do own a mirror

I don't think I need very few words to explain this one...
I looked in my bathroom mirror yesterday and noticed that I had a freaking uni-brow! I had no idea! Im not one for the perfectly shaped brow look and I prefer to just pluck the middle a bit. This however has not happened in a long while, apparently. So I tried some new wax strips that Ive had for awhile and they worked pretty well. Ive used wax before but never on my face and I have to say that Ive never been impressed. I think I might actually prefer this method for my brows though. It took maybe 2 minutes tops and I don't think the results are too bad.

And uh, Im sick and apparently quite brave to post these pictures online. Can you believe that these were the good shots?

Friday, November 7, 2008

Count Down

According to my calculations Christmas is less than 7 weeks away. That's kinda crazy if you ask me. Ive got a lot of my shopping done because I was relying on getting sponsored by the local women's shelter. I didn't think Id need to buy much and its not like I even have the money to buy much, but things have changed. Today was the day to register for the sponsorship but I couldn't get through and so now Ive lost the chance. Im a little scared that Ill have to provide the entire Christmas for four kids and now with only 7 weeks to go, I don't have much time to make it work.

My parents leave 5 weeks from Monday and they've always been really important in my life. My mom is my rock and Im scared to lose her. Last year was my first Christmas while single and I was very depressed but my Mom is who helped me through it. I don't know how to face this year without her. There are the silly little details like where Im going to go for Diner that day (the kids always spend the afternoon and evening with their dad), but the big stuff like knowing that I cant just go see them when it all gets to be too much, that's whats hard. They will still only be a phone call away and with our web cams we can still see each other but I don't know how Im going to go a year without giving my mom a hug. Im 25 years old and Ive never gone more than a few months without seeing my parents. How am I going to last a year or more?

I think I could handle it if I had someone else to help me, someone else to become my rock. I have no one in my life right now and that makes things terribly lonely. But on top of that feeling is just knowing that I have no one to help me when times get rough.

Knowing that I still have the 5.5 weeks with my parents is bitter sweet. One the one hand it gives us some extra time to make sure we spend as much time together as possible. On the other though it gives me 5.5 weeks of worrying and being scared of loosing my mom. My dad is 53 and not a healthy person so I worry that he may not come back after the four years. What if they leave and I never see him again?

Sometimes I get mad at myself for thinking these things and other times I feel like they are legitimate. Im 25 with four children of my own. I should be able to deal with not seeing my parents for a year but instead it feels like my whole world is falling apart.

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Just in Time

I was just turning off my computer for the night when I realised that I hadn't posted yet today. As simple as that and I almost ruined my NaBloPoMo goal! I did realise though and after running upstairs to give Josiah a quick feed, Im back and searching my noggin for something to write.

I have a few ideas but its 11pm and Im tired so Im just going to make a quick couple of comments. First, I was in a mood today where I felt like doing something but totally didn't feel like doing anything either. Make sense? No? Ya, its weird. I think Im PMSing and that always makes me weird. Anyway, Im getting off topic. What Im trying to say is that I totally caved and brought the mug-wumps to the good ol' golden arches for some lunch and playtime. We don't have any indoor play areas in this city so this is really our only option during the winter and I hate it. Today was actually really warm outside but I just could not face a park or even our own back yard so we went there. I got to sit and look at a paper with Josiah while Chris and Michael played for about and hour and a half. Michael has always stayed out with me and watched his brothers playing in the play area but he is finally old enough to enjoy it himself. He kept coming out and saying "wee" and then "more wee" meaning "I went down the slide, Mommy! Watch, Im going to do it again!" I love toddler-speak.

Ok so long story short I noticed after I ate that the cartons for the burgers now show the dietary info that used to be online and in a pamphlet. My burger had 29g of fat alone! According to the carton, that was only 45% of my daily recommended amount. But that didn't make any sense so I looked closer and wouldn't you bet, they had based it on a daily diet of 2000 calories. Im not totally up on what this number should be for the average adult, but Im thinking 2000 is a little high. I know that 1500 is a good number but that may just be for when you're loosing weight. Either way, 2000 seems like a lot and a bit of a marketing trick if you ask me.

Then I looked at Chris's wrapper from his happy meal burger and saw that his was also based on a 2000 calorie diet. Now there is no way that a child needs 2000 calories no matter who they are! Its no secret that this food is not health food. Im all for healthier options but for McD's to be promoting themselves as healthy is kinda nuts. Adding apple slices as an option for happy meals is great, but being sneaky about the nutritional value of their food is so wrong. People that understand what they are reading are at such an advantage over those parents that dont necessarily know what those numbers all mean. They could see 9% of their daily recommended amount of fat and think that it isnt all that bad, but if you really look at it, its so much more!

Ive tried to cut take out from our lives quite a bit over the last 6 months and Ive succeeded for the most part. When we do have it though, Im always appalled by how lousy it really is. The food tastes like crap, makes me feel gross and doesn't do much for my wallet or waistline. Even if it is a place for the kids to play, Id rather not do it anymore. So after we left there, I finally went to the Y and got all my info for joining. I will go ahead and actually join when I can get in without the kiddies for a tour and to set everything up. That will probably be on a day when the older ones are with their dad. I would be happy to actually start going tomorrow but I just have to force myself to keep my encouragement to go until I can actually go. Im horrible for social situations and I avoid many new experiences because of this so actually talking myself into going into that gym without feeling like I know what Im doing is just terrifying anyway.

Ok, that's enough rambling for one night. Its getting closer to 11:30 now so Id better post this and get it over with for the day.

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

There's really no point to this post

Im sick so wah! I have no desire to post today and probably wouldn't have if I wasn't trying to do NaBloPoMo. I stayed up way too late writing my novel and drank lots of caffeine so I had a hard time sleeping even when I did finally get to bed. Josiah is extra sensitive to caffeine when I drink it too so I usually stay away but ended up having some Pepsi with our pizza last night. Then I then kept drinking it. No wonder I've gained weight!

Yesterday was Michael's real birthday and Im going to do a post about him one of these days but I don't think I have the brain power for that to be today.

I know that Ill probably be reading enough about the election in all of your posts but let me just say WOOOOO HOOOOOO! Ive secretly kinda hated the US for the last bit but I think you have restored my faith in your decision making skills! Even though my own country is a bit doomed, Im at least happy for all of my American friends today.

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

down, not up!

My dress arrived today. I had just walked out the door to run some errands when I saw it in the mail box so I was disappointed to have to wait to try it on. When I did finally get home I rushed right into my bedroom and tried to throw it on only to find that it was too small. I noticed at first that it made my hips stick out really weird but then I couldn't even get the zipper to go up past by boobs.

I felt so discouraged and wondered if I had possibly gained some weight back so I climbed on my scale only to find that I have gained a whopping 7lbs in the last two weeks! Holy Hell Batman! Ive always bounced around with my weight but that is a really big jump for such a short time and it has me worried. Ive totally let my diet go and I haven't exercised in awhile so it really isn't a mystery as to where the lbs came from but still. I thought I could slack for a little while and maybe just stay where I was instead of losing; I didn't think Id actually gain.

So now Ive got those extra 7 so get rid of as well as the 1 that I still had to lose to hit my 50lbs mark. My target weight is now 28 lbs away and that feels like an impossible goal at the moment. I know I need to re-evaluate and re focus on my weight loss goals and not give in to the feelings of failure, but that is seriously hard. According to my calendar, if I were to get serious again and lose 2 lbs each week, I would have my 28lbs gone by the first few days in February. That seems doable. If I were to go a little slower and loose 1 lbs each week, I would hit my target weight in the second week of May. This also seems doable. I don't want to pressure myself to loose too much in too little time because I know I wont stick with it but Im also so sick of being overweight. It took 3 years to get to that 49lb mark and right before I actually hit the 50, I ended up hitting a snag. I want to feel that victory and I want to feel the even bigger one of hitting my target weight.

I know that weight isn't the best way to measure any of this either, but it helps to have an actual number that you can see and work with. I have no idea how many extra inches I have on me and so saying I want to loose 4 inches off my waist isn't really accurate. I could guesstimate but that isn't really productive.

I think the first step is to pass on anymore Halloween junk and get back on track with eating properly. The exercise has always been an issue for me and I tend to find excuses not to do it. My excuse now is that I don't want to drag 4 kids into the Y to get the membership forms that I need to fill out and I never have a good time to go there without the kids. So I just haven't been there to get them even though i started talking about it over a month ago. If I had just done it then, I could have at least started there and the kids and I could go every day if we wanted to.

Ok enough of a rant...I should actually be working on my novel

Monday, November 3, 2008

Lets discuss babies, shall we?

The other day I noticed that Josiah was scouching (is that a word?) himself over to the side of his little blanket/toy contraption and grabbing onto some of the lower toys to munch on. At first I thought it was just a fluke but he keeps doing it. Yesterday I even started handing him things and he grabs them no problem and brings them to his mouth! He still cant really control his hands much yet and frequently drops things but the process keeps him amused for a long time.

Both the rolling over of last month and now this has got me wondering if he has more skills that Im not aware of? Being my fourth I think Im spending less time physically playing with him then I did with my first so maybe Im just not paying as much attention as I used to. The alternative is that he is just so damn smart and is figuring out all these things with little help or encouragement from me.

Speaking of Josiah, Ive been contemplating beginning solids. Ive always started my kids early and looking back I don't know if it was always the right decision. I think I mistook growth spurts and changes as hunger and thought I needed to start solids at a much earlier age then was probably necessary. With Rayden it was 2.5 months and with Chris it was about 3 months. With both of them their starting solids coincided with my giving up breast feeding and starting them on formula. I was convinced that I just didn't have enough milk for Chris and I still believe that I didn't but why on earth did I think he needed to start solids at the same time he started formula?

Michael was around 4 months which was the recommended age to begin them when I first became a mother. In the last few years though the common thinking is to wait until 6 months. Im on two minds about this though. First, I feed Josiah completely on demand and so if he is hungry, he eats. I don't feel like he is not getting enough but I DO sometimes feel like he is always eating. He will be 4 months old this coming weekend so Ive already almost past the ages that Ive started all of my others on it. Also, I was looking forward to giving him his first food on Christmas day, to make it extra special.

This may be TMI so be warned! Ive always resumed my monthly flow the month after my babies were born even though I breast fed. I read somewhere recently that it only resumes after solids are introduced or if the baby is formula fed. I have no idea if this is true but for whatever reason mine hasn't come back yet and Id rather not get that any time soon. Im 25 and have a lot of years ahead of me for that and since Im done with kids there will never be another break from it. OMG, what a horrible thought!

Ok so getting back to the point; when is the best time to start solids? Also what order do you think is the best when introducing foods? I know I tend to get a little excited and want to introduce everything right away but I don't think that's a good idea. I usually start with rice cereal and work through all the single grains, then the mixed grains and so on. My kids have all been fans of the jarred peas too so I usually give them those as a first vegetable. I think though that this time I want to make my own baby food so I have so many more options than I did before. I think I can probably make organic home made baby foods cheaper than I could buy the regular stuff so that's always a bonus. Beans also seem like a really neat way to go but Ive never fed my babies beans so Im a little clueless.

You know now that Im thinking about this, feeding is kinda like cloth diapering. Its really confusing when you first get into it but with just a bit of research and hands on experience, Im sure it will all become a lot more clear. Suggestions and tips however are always welcome!

Sunday, November 2, 2008

Day two

Its day two of both NaNoWriMo and NaBloPoMo and all I want to do is SLEEP! Yesterday really sucked the big one and I only managed to write 1568 words of my novel (which will be called Purple Marmalade). I did post here and I almost made my word count so it was a successful day in theory, but I had planned to do so much more.

Even now, I should be all pumped to go and be writing madly but instead Im browsing the Nano forums and reading blogs. My head feels heavy and my eyes are trying to close on me. The kids will be home in exactly 6 hours and Josiah is currently napping; what more could I ask for?

Part of the problem is that I don't like my story already. I didn't really have a plot at all when I started and Ive kinda formed something but I don't like it as much as I thought I would. Im writing chick lit and the fact that Ive never read a single novel in this genre is starting to show. Im not much of a fiction reader to begin with and Im certainly not a writer so ya, its not great.

So far Ive decided that Ill be writing in first person present tense (such a challenge for me!) and my MC will mostly be people watching in a women's only gym. Im going to do something with her perceptions of the regulars at the gym but I haven't really gotten that far yet. I need something interesting to keep me going. Im a really fast writer so I know that given a half hour each day Ill meet my word count, but I need to be INTERESTED in what Im writing to make that happen.

At least Ive got day two for NaBloPoMo crossed off my list for today!

Oh and as a side, my old bf comes home TODAY! I have no idea if he will become a regular character around here but Ive decided to give him the boring, yet practical title of "M."

Saturday, November 1, 2008

And we're off...kinda


Today marks the beginning of NaNoWriMo. Many people started their novels last night but because I was set to get up with the kids this morning, I decided against it. I will be starting at 5pm when they go with their dad. It is currently about 4:15 and Josiah just woke up from a nap so he will probably still be awake and you know, needing me at 5, but we'll see what happens. I dont have to get up tomorrow until Josiah and I decide so I plan to stay up late writing and hopefully get 10k in before the kids get home tomorrow at 4.


And because Im kinda crazy that way, Ive also decided to do NaBloPoMo which is basically just writing a post every day for a month. Last month (I cant believe its November already!) I did something like 21 posts (8600 words!) so I dont think it will be too much of a challenge. I may just end up telling you all how many words Ive got on the novel or something.


Ive added the widget to the side of my blog so that you can see what my word count is at and cheer me along. Happy November people!!

Friday, October 31, 2008

As promised...

Oh Hi! I thought I might actually post those pictures of my house that I promised so long ago.

So, this is my front entrance...Ooooh, exciting!



And here is my much-more-exciting living room:



and my super retro kitchen that hasn't been updated since the house was built:


Notice how I didn't even clean up before I took these? Nice.

Finally, these are the boys' bedrooms. Im not going to post any of my bedroom just cause that is weird and these pics actually show more of their toys then anything else. So this is Michael's room:

It will eventually also be Josiah's room when he outgrows sleeping in Mama's bed.

And this is the big boys' room:



They want their walls painted blue and red, like spiderman. Im not going to get into that until after xmas though so until then, their room is just plain.

Thursday, October 30, 2008

Marshmellows should be counted as diet food

Also: I need to get Twitter

Wow, just...wow

So the last few days have been a crazy roller coaster of everything. There was the NaNoWriMo kickoff party for my area that was held last night in a little cafe downtown. It was really fun and I cant wait to go back and hang out with these people again. Im beginning to wonder if Ill be more interested in going out once a week down to that cafe then actually writing my novel.




Then there was the news that my parents are definately moving to North West Territories. At first they weren't sure if they would still be here by the end of November, but now we know that they'll stay until about the 15th of December. This is nice because it allows us to have a bit of an early Christmas before they leave. Im super close with my mom so her leaving is going to be really tough. She'll be doing her doctorate degree while she is up there as well so she has to fly to the US like 12 times over the next couple years and doesn't think she can afford to fly here much. It doesn't look like she will be moving back in any less than 4 years either. My kids wont even know who they are when they get back, Owen especially. Sigh.


From that sad news to the happy news that my last bf will be moving back here on Sunday. His boss has decided to open an office here and so he is coming back to work there. I wasn't expecting him back until xmas so this is a nice surprise. The weird thing though is that I have no idea if Ill even see him. I know what you all said about forgetting about him but that is easier said than done. So anyway, he is going to be back in the city and on one hand Im happy, but on the other I don't know what to think about it.


The kids were also sick at the start of the week and are just now back to normal. We weren't able to do much of what I had planned this week because of it. So now that they are all better we finally carved out pumpkin tonight. There was fighting and crying, but in the end they were happy with how it turned out. Ive learned that I am horrible with a knife though so they are lucky it turned out at all!



I think the last big thing this week is that Ive been waiting for money from the government. In my province there is a new program where for every child that is born after January 1/08 the parents receive $2200 during the first year. This was only started a week before Josiah was born so they were really backed up with all the births from the first 6 months of the year by the time he came along. Anyway, I received a letter two weeks ago that said the payment had been processed and would be deposited in my account. Problem was, no money showed up. So I called and eventually the woman was able to track down the money for me. Turns out the check was never processed and so she was processing it for me right away. Funny how something that was only supposed to take 6 weeks is going to end up taking 4 months. At least the money will be here now, but Ive been expecting it for the last couple months and it is so hard when you don't know when exactly something like that will come.



On top of everything else tomorrow is Halloween and we just now found Rayden's costume. That has been a stress for awhile because I haven't had a minute to go dig through the storage area in the laundry room and his closet to try and find it. At least that is settled now. I have a bit of treats to hand out but we don't plan to be home for most of the night so I don't have much. I don't want to disappoint the kiddies that have to pass the house though so I may end up just putting a bowl of whatever outside for them. This is the first year that we have a house for Halloween and Im not sure how to deal with it. We always just went through the building in years past so I didn't really have to worry about the weather but this year we are going to my mom's house and all around there with my brother. Oh my, I guess its not a big deal. I just have to remember to get everything ready in the morning so that Im not stressed at the last minute.


Ive noticed that the last few weeks my posts have been so negative. :( Im not sure exactly how to change that around though. Maybe that's just how Ive been feeling overall lately. Hopefully when I get working on that novel and all these surprises stop coming at me, I might get back to a bit more normal outlook.

Happy Halloween everybody!!

Monday, October 27, 2008

Boo! Jamie's turning two!



So Saturday we celebrated Michael's 2nd birthday. He wont actually be two until next week but I wanted it Halloween themed and this is how it worked out. First, Melissa and I had been talking about the party for a while now and so one night last month we got together until 2am and made the invitations for the party. They turned out awesome!!!
And yes, I am aware that the name does not say Michael, but Ive never really been all that secretive anyway.
We had lots of Halloween inspired food like Mummy pizzas and swamp sludge. One of the activities that I planned for the kids was to decorate their own cupcakes with Halloween candy. Let me just say OMG FUN!!! But also: MESSY!



Michael actually started out wearing a costume but he poured his drink all over himself and refused to put on another shirt. He went as a birthday suit so he wore suit pants and a button shirt with beads around his neck and streamers stuck to him. All the costumes were great and I um don't happen to have one of mine....yes, that's *cough* what it is. I *cough* must not have taken any. Either way, I went as Super Mom so my costume included a cape and a big "S" on my shirt. I also wore a big belt with an "M" on the buckle and mommy-type stuff hanging from it. I had a duster, spatula and a baby. I threw the costume together about an hour before everyone got there, but it is definitely a good one that you can do so much with. My cousin was a sumo wrestler:And she even let Rayden try on the suit:
Melissa came as Wilma and Violet was Pebbles! They were so cute! Ive got another picture of them with my brother and it would have been a really great one if he had been dressed as Fred.
You can see bam bam in this next picture, along with all the other kiddies:
And when it was all said and done, I sat on the couch with my feet up and treated myself to a little computer time. I didn't even clean up until the next day...

Yay! Finally something FUN in the mail!

Not too long ago I won Mommy Daisy's Thomas the Tank Engine contest.

The DVD arrived today!!!

The kids were obviously VERY excited

And wanted it played RIGHT AWAY


This is only a preview before Thomas even makes an appearance and they are already drawn in! Chris hasn't taken his eyes off of it yet and Michael is alternating between an open-mouthed lost look on his face while he watches and playing with his new firetruck from Melissa.
SO MUCH FUN!! Thank you Mommy Daisy!

Friday, October 24, 2008

rough

Aaaahhhh! Michael's 2nd birthday party is tomorrow and I have a huge to-do list for it. I think I could manage getting it all done in time except that I am so unbelievably tired today. I dont know what is wrong with me but even knowing that the party is like 22 hours away isnt helping me get myself going.

Ive had about a bajillion ideas for blog posts but never feel like writing. I was actually falling asleep the other night trying to get through everyone else's posts.

Im having a bit of trouble with the lady that lives in the basement apartment here and I know Ive got a bit of a fight ahead of me to fix it but I just dont want to deal with it.

like everyone else right now Im stressed about money and worried that I am spending too much. I know all too well what can happen and how quickly when you cant make your bills so Im afraid.

NaNoWriMo starts in a week and Im worried Ill have too much other crap going on to actually be able to do it even though Ive been planning for months.

Sorry about the crappy, depressing post today guys. Im sure Ill be back tomorrow after the party with lots of pictures.

Sunday, October 19, 2008

excuse me while I rant a little

Well P is at it again. Last month I sent The Ex a message on facebook asking what he planned to get the kids for xmas so there wasn't any overlap. I included in the message what the kids wanted and what I thought was a reasonable split of the items. I obviously would spend more because they spend xmas morning with me so I am responsible for Santa. Anyway, instead of responding, he blocked me. So we never discussed it again.

P just sent me a message dripping with attitude about what they have decided to get the kids. For Rayden they got him an ipod which is what I asked them to get him but they got him the cheapest one possible. Because I didn't hear from them last month about this, I already planned to get him one and a much nicer one than what they picked out. So I told her this because now that I have my budget all figured out and I know what he wants, it was all going to work out perfectly. I have no clue what else I could get him for the same price that he wants just as much and it is really pointless for him to have two of the same thing. But she refuses to change her plans.

So now I can either still get him the much nicer one that I had planned and have him have two or just leave it and let them give him the crappier one. It is great that they would give him something that he really wants because he is usually treated as less than the other kids (because he isn't biologically The Ex's). But they spent three times on Chris as they did on Rayden and acted like I was stupid to suggest an alternative gift that was slightly more expensive.

I just took a break from writing this because she kept sending more texts and now this has turned into a full on fight. She likes to point out that The Ex and I are not a family and will never be. Im just like "Duh! I gave that shit up long ago." She is so insecure about their relationship that it really gets in the way of us parenting our kids. The worst part is that if they had replied last month everything could have been avoided and we wouldn't have had to talk today. She said that she contacted me as a courtesy to let me know what they got but um, isnt that what I tried to do last month? And how the hell is it a courtesy if you aren't willing to work with me to make it the best for the kids as possible? Man exs are hard enough, throw in their jealous girlfriends and there's no winning.

Ive tried to handle this situation the best I can. Michael and I pray every night before bed and every night we thank God for P. She is important in my kids' lives. She will be their step mother in a couple years! I even invited her to Michael's bday party next weekend at our house but she is so resistant. Hopefully one day she will get over this and be a positive addition to this parenting thing.