Happy First Day of Spring…. don’t mind the snow.

First Day of Spring…. WooHoo!! Uh then I looked out my window…. WHAT??? Oh Alberta, I just shake my head. My mother reminded me this morning that last year mother nature also thought it would be funny to have a snowy blowy spring storm on this day. Really? Seriously? Can’t we have just a little bit of hope that we don’t live in the North Pole?  Sigh…. oh well. I’m going to call a friend, put on the coffee, stay in my pj’s till the afternoon.

I’ll use this chilly blustery wintery day to once again catch up on laundry, dishes and organizing my events for World Doula Week.

Soon the sun will shine, and the grass will be green and we will briefly forget about all the piles of snow that line the ditches and driveways on the farm. Soon it will be Spring. I know for sure because Dean already has 20 calves in the field and they are one of the signs of spring, so come on mother nature……

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Super September

Well so far it’s been a SUPER start to September and tomorrow marks the 1st Anniversary of my Blog!!!! Really? Already? Wow!  A pat on the back for me! I may have not got as many posts in as I wanted to, but it is really nice to have a place to journal and share some of our silly little life.

So lets see…. what has made September so SUPER so far.

1. Kids are back in School. And yes we had an amazing summer, but I was glad to see routine back into our lives.

2. I signed Caitlin up for Gymnastics which she is really excited about.

3. Deanna made it to the second stage of her appliance. So we now have fewer trips to the dentist and the improvements have been positive.

4. I was blessed to be part of another beautiful birth of a first baby and witness also the birth of a family.

5. My girlfriend asked me to come on a totally last minute get away to LasVEGAS!!! to celebrate her birthday. And even though it rained almost everyday we were there (lol) we made the best of it, and as I browsed the pictures tonight they brought a smile to my face. Thank you so much for those wonderful memories my friend!!!  I’d do it all over again.

and

6. The anniversary of my blog. I didn’t realize it till I sat down to write this post, but then I was really excited. I hope to grow in my writing more over the years. Sometimes inspiration hits me and I can write something really deep, other times it’s just a quick post to update my craziness.

So thank you all of you for following and reading my blog, for sharing my moments and memories, and for not boooo-ing me offline… hehehe. 

Super September, lets keep up the good work. Lets keep the momentum going as we push forward into harvest on the farm and head into what I call birthday season….If you don’t remember check out my early blog.. Autumn Arrives…. My husbands birthday kicks off a series of 9 birthdays in the last months of the year.

 

May Madness….

Well I can’t believe it’s the last day of May already. For our family May had been very busy both with the kids and on the Farm.

We started out the month with a few really nice days, and right away my husband was anxious to get into the field to seed, but first we had a little celebrating to do. My baby boy turned One at the beginning of May and we had a great family dinner then a beautiful afternoon in the park complete with Farm themed cake and cupcakes. I still can’t believe my baby is one years old. His birthday was a special day and he was surrounded by love which is a beautiful thing. When there are days I am feeling blue, these are the moments I need to recall; pushing the kids on the swings in the sunshine and sitting on the living room floor sharing in the giggles of a new toy.

So after his birthday the month just seemed to fly by. When the clouds would part and the sun would come out my husband disappeared into the tractor to seed barley and canola. And when he wasn’t fixing equipment there were cows to look after and fence to fix. Even though the rain slows his progress, I welcome it somedays, cause it’s the only time in spring I get to see him.

On occasion my girlfriend and I would get a run in as well, which feels really good, but I am surprised how hard it was in May to fit in just a hour a week of fitness. I think I finally have a few babysitters at my disposal now so I can be organized to get ready for the two mud runs I’ve registered for this fall. AHHHHHHHH. What am I thinking??? I’m not a runner. But I hear its great for getting a flat tummy, so sign me up baby.. LOl.

This month I also had the honour of joining a couple as a Doula for the birth of their baby girl. We also had; Playschool Field trip and Graduation for my middle Daughter, A Doula Training workshop, Hypnobabies Course which was truly amazing information, My sister-in-law planting the garden, yard work, the trampoline out, a trip to Leduc, dealing with Deanna’s dental appliance(Which is a whole other blog post)  and my son gaining his confidence in walking. Oh yes, he is walking around the house so I know he’s officially not a baby anymore, but more a toddler now.

My oh my, no wonder I felt a little silly some days, it was truly a busy month in our house. And as June begins, I look forward to a wonderful summer with friends, new babies(even a cousin for our kids, WOOT WOOT) Camping, more running and workouts and just soaking up the sunshine. Maybe a few days of sprinkler fun and swimming pools when all the kids are here. I think I would be even happier if I could get some painting projects and reno projects done too.

I hope as you look ahead into June, July and August you see Sun and Fun too.

Spring start.

Well hello, I know it’s been quite a while since I’ve posted anything, but I’m happy to be writing today. I had taken a short break, because quite frankly, I couldn’t think of anything good to write about. The weather had me in a funk. But in the last week, spring has finally arrived, and the green grass I have been longing to see is here.
I never used to think the seasons could affect my mood, but after six months of winter in Alberta, I needed some sunshine to rejuvenate my soul. I needed warmer weather for the kids, so they could play outside, and finally it is here.
It’s funny how I understand now why my mom always talked about spring being like a re-birth. This spring I truly feel it. I feel refreshed, excited and eager. Ready to set some new goals and enjoy what is in store for me.
With the help of a friend ( or two) I am working towards running 5km in a few different fun runs. It is the start of something great, and training with a friend is the only way to go. Plus getting up and being physically active does wonders for your self-esteem. I feel better knowing I’m healthier. I’m also enjoying Zumba as it feeds my passion for dance and burns calories at the same time!
Another goal, that I see coming closer into view is my doula certification. I’m currently on call for a client with more this summer, and I hope when the summer is over I will have the experience I need to do the reports and send away my certification package. What a good feeling that would be.
All around there are lots of good feelings at our house. The cows have calves, the grass is green, my baby took his first steps, Deanna grows taller, Caitlin is getting more independent, and I can sit back and soak it all in, plus some much needed sunshine. Thank you spring for a fresh start.

The Mad Hatter

Hats, they are so great! They can be really cute, fun, or practical. They can keep crazy hair under cover, shield the sun, or keep your head warm (In Canada we call those hats Touques) They come in many colors, fabrics and styles. My husband is a full fledged farmer, and almost never goes anywhere with out a baseball cap. I have many friends who have hoards of really great hats, kinda the way I have hoards of really great shoes, you see, I look HORRIBLE in Hats! Every once in a while I see a hat and think, hey maybe that would look cute on me, proceed to try it on, and then rip it off as fast as I can, hoping that no one saw that atrocious display. This can pose a big problem for me especially for the fact that we live in Canada, and 8months of the year requires that your ears be covered. I have yet to find a touque that a:looks cute on me, b: keeps my head AND ears warm, and c: Isn’t so Itchy I’d rather get frost bite then feel like my head is stuck in a straw bale. Grrrrrrr.

And then there is the issue of summer hats. Oh where do I begin…..   My mom found this great hat in Mexico, the kind that you can scrunch up in a suitcase and when you pull it out it looks cute and keeps the sun off, well I obviously didn’t get the hat wearing gene from my Mom. Boooo! I tried to find a hat like that in Mexico, I wore it for the week and when I got home proceeded to put it in the Sally Ann Box. Good thing it was cheap. I’ll donate it and someone else will love it.

As you can see in the picture I did find a hat in Vegas that I liked, a month later it went missing, and I mourned the loss. I kept my eye open for another like it. Skip a year ahead….. OMG I found a hat like that one. Quick buy it, actually, buy two. Yeah! I own one cute hat, perfect. Then fast forward a week, Hey Lesley-Ann, guess what I just found in the camper???? My Vegas hat. LOL. Figures. Bet if I hadn’t bought those hats, I wouldn’t have found it. She agrees with me. Too Funny. 

Well today I am packing for a winter trip and once again hats is an issue. I’m missing my pink winter touque the one of 10 I have that I actually think looks good on me. Do you think I could get away with wearing my daughters leopard print touque with the pink bows? It looks great on her!!?? Oh good she missed the non-hat wearing gene from me! Phew. Dodged that one.

Maybe I should buy one of those jester hats that are suppose to look silly and then it wont matter if I look ridiculous cause that’s the point. Oh goodness I don’t like hats, but ask me about my shoe collection and we’re more then okay!Image

Power – as in Electricity.

Well I’m not quite sure where to begin. There are so many random thoughts running through my brain, I am not sure how to make sense of all of it to put it into a post that is organized at all. I’ll start by quoting a friend….. ” What a weird week”

It seems this week has revolved around power, or the lack there of.  And in this century it is a big deal when there is no power. We had to fight two days in a row to get our kids sent home when the power was out at our rural school. Zumba was also cancelled as there was no power.

Now since we live in the country, the majority of us have a back up power sources for emergency’s like these. There is so much humidity in the air the power lines and trees are covered in Ice. It was making me nervous on Wednesday, as I had visions of Ontario Ice storms.  But like I said I am fortunate to be married into a family who understands these weather things and is prepared. We don’t have a wood stove like some of our neighbors, but my husband has a tractor run generator that hooks to our main poll to power the farm. Now before I go any further, I need to clarify why exactly we have a generator. Lol. I know Lesley-anne is laughing.  We have beef cattle and electric waterers for them, and the TRUE reason the generator gets hooked up is so the waterers don’t freeze and the cows can drink. Make sure you read that again : ) The fact that our house gets power is just a benefit of having cows.  Mind you we’ve been off and on with power since Wednesday, so we need to make sure our house doesn’t get too cold. We managed to figure out the right RPM on the tractor to get our furnace to kick in and work the stove. All other house work has been put on hold. I am only writing this blog because the cow are drinking.

So we have been usimg candles and flashlights during the night just in case. And last night we got a shocker, literally. At 3am we were jolted out of bed to sounds of popping and zapping and the light flickering everywhere. It was similar to a house being struck by lightning.  I quickly turned of the lights and calmed the kids. Dean ran outside to the generator that had been off and started it up. But that wasn’t what scared me, I smelt burned wires, and my fear of fire began to rise.  Deanna said she smelled smoke. So a frantic run to Dean to shut down the power, and a search through the whole house presumed.  NO FIRE! THANK THE LORD! We could relax.  But boy it stunk. We soon discovered that one of our surge protectors couldn’t handle the amount of electricity and it fried the TV, our Wii, and desktop computer. Just another thing to deal with. We are not sure if insurance or the REA will cover any damage, so we will just wait and see. Our neighbors  said it was like someone had run into the side of their trailer. They lost a microwave and stove.  Now something to note about all of this; both Dean and I realized how reliant on power our society is. In dealing with the TV satellite, he wanted to call Shaw, only to discover that the brochure had no phone number to call; It quotes “visit shawdirect.ca for information” . REALLY!!! Wow. That’s how much we are dependent on power to run computers, so we can get information. We can’t even pick up a piece of paper and call someone. How soon before Phone books are a blast from the past?

We survived, we are all okay and our house is okay. Like Dean said the TV is just stuff. It can be replaced, it just costs money.

Our year has been full of “replacement”. Most of Deans farm equipment has had parts replaced for various reasons, and more then normal this year. It’s just been one of those years, every time we turn around, something else needs to be fixed. I had high hopes that the end of the year would be better, with harvest over and such. You know that saying “In like a Lion, out like a lamb”  well is there such thing as ” In like a lion, out like a lion? ” Thats how I feel  this year. I’ll be happy to see 2013 and hopefully a fresh new year. It’s been a strange week, and a strange year. All little things, but little things add up.

And despite all this, I feel I am the happiest I have been in a long time, I am where I need to be and I have wonderful friends and a great family. Even with all those little things going askew, I am thankful for what I do have.  I leave you with another quote ” Embrace the perfection of imperfection”

 

My Turn

I’m not writing this post to invoke sympathy from friends or family, or to pour out my woes and feel sorry for myself, but as an observation to how life plays out.  Those sayings about what you put out  there comes back to you and karma and such, I think there is some truth in them. I have tried to live my life with those thoughts in mind. Treat others the way you wish to be treated, trying not to burn bridges, don’t judge someone unless you’ve “walked a mile” in their shoes, remember there are always two sides to every story etc, etc and so on. And I think I have done an okay job, I am not perfect, but I always try to make an effort.

Well tonight, yet again, I am sitting at home alone, listening to my girls (who are suppose to be sleeping) arguing about what book to read next and to my very tired baby “complain” about being put in his bed so I can get a few minutes for me.  Now neither of these things are terrible, reading in bed is okay really, and it’s not like Conner is screaming his head off, but after another day by myself  looking after the kids, these noises sound like nails on a chalkboard.  Today again I am a Harvest widow. My husband has been out in the field all day and just informed me that he’ll eat his supper when he’s done, so I don’t need to bring him anything. Yesterday after supper I took all the kids for a quick drive to see him, just to get out of the house and have a break. I know my fellow moms would understand when I say at the end of the day it can be hard not to snap when one of your kids calls…. Mommy! By 8pm that word sends shivers down my spine sometimes, and I have to remind myself, “it’s just because I’m tired and it’s been a long day. I really do love that word” : ) My friend told me once there was a FB post about how bedtime should be at the beginning of day when mommy’s patience hasn’t been used up yet. How true is that hey? I am capable of handling it though. I’ve proven that to myself in the last four months, but it’s certainly nice to have some help. I’ve got tonnes of support that I can call on anytime I need too, so it’s really not as bad as it may seem here. PS the house if quiet now. All three kids sleeping like angels.

So I bet your wondering where this is going. Well it seems like ever since we had our baby boy in the spring,  I have been running this show alone. I know that’s not how it is, but with Dean in the field from morning till after dark and a new baby and two other kids, it gets overwhelming sometimes. It’s better now that Conner is older, he’s still demanding, but before I know it he’ll be running around too. In my husband’s defense, it’s just the timing of everything. Spring, and Fall are a farmers bread and butter. For as long as I’ve known him this is  how its always been, the daily schedule at harvest, but I haven’t been home full time till now to notice how much I miss him when he’s gone all day and then all evening. It’s hard doing the parenting thing all by myself, and then I realize…….. huh this must be how HE felt.

You see when we were first married, I had a business and I had started dancing very regularly. Then we had a baby and I continued to run the flower shop, pursue my dance passion, be a mom and wife. Since dean farmed and he was busy at parts of the year, we naturally fell into the stay-at-home dad routine. And it worked, it really did, he loved his little girl, we managed alright, but I was gone a lot. Eventually I would sell the store and work a bit less, but by then I was part of a professional dance troupe and had started teaching classes. Then Caitlin came along and I worked part time after she was born. I was fortunate to bring her to work with me, and  I still danced in the evening, often leaving Dean with one or more kids. I don’t ever remember him complaining once all those years, he never protested, he always just helped make it work. What an amazing man! Well I realized last summer, that it just wasn’t working for us anymore. Caitlin cried when I went to work and I was so tired that driving to dance and teaching was exhausting. It was time to start subtracting. It was MY TURN to be the stay-at-home parent.  I knew I made the right choice when we had an incredible summer and then God confirmed that I was right where I should be when we found out we were expecting again.  So after all those years of me being the one who worked all day and then having evening commitments, it flipped around, and now it’s my turn to take over the role my husband did so well for many years.

And even if I feel like complaining, I will try not to, he never did and I will just remind myself, that now it’s my turn. Karma’s a bitch right? , but in this case I’m actually thankful cause she kicked me right to where I should be, and probably where I should’ve been a long time ago.  When the kids are older, there will be time again for me to dance and work (if i want), but right now they need me here, Dean needs me here, I need me here. I’ll be thankful also that I am part of a family fortunate enough to be a stay-at-home mom. For I know there are others who do not have that luxury.

You Should be Dancing….. Yeah!

For those of you who remember, that phrase brings to mind a man in a white pant suit. Yes great song, and yes “I” Should be Dancing….. literally!

Tuesday nights for  many many years have been my dance night. I would truck off to Airdrie to rehearse with the professional Bellydance group I am part of.  Yes I am a bellydancer too, another role to add to my list,  and I have the closet of costumes to prove it! On Tuesday evenings, the amazing Suzy Q, and wonderful friend,  of Shimmy Dance Productions would lead us in shimmies and undulations and glorious choreographies. Not only is it a great workout for body and mind, it is also my sanity time, a retreat with the gals.  I developed many wonderful friendships with the other dancers, and although the drive was long, I always had a fabulous time there.

Now recently, another great friend of mine started fitness classes at the school by our house. This is great, as they are close to home  and twice a week.  A little less driving for me and still a great workout. Over the summer she did her Zumba certification and so now it’s ZUMBA twice a week.  ARE YOU kidding me!!!! THAT”S SOOOOO AWESOME!!!!  I love Zumba.  I used to go to a studio in Red Deer when I had time, and Natalie’s  Zumba classes rocked the house. Rachel’s classes are just as fun and I am so excited that its right around the corner. Oddly enough Rachel’s classes are on Tues and Thurs. So now I have two wonderful classes I could attend on Tuesday nights. Great! But lately there have been many factors in my life working against me going to dance.

1. My growing family of three kids – with each one comes more demands on my time, and harder and harder to leave all of them with my husband Dean, or babysitter. I have in the past packed the kids up and taken them with me to Airdrie, but with two kids in school and a baby who likes to nurse 24/7, that’s not so realistic right now.

2. Money- well it’s just a little tighter around here as I stay home instead of working. Justifying the gas money, or cost of class can be hard, but it is my physical health after all. Also paying for a sitter has to be considered too, so…….

3. Child Care – Besides the cost of paying for a sitter, evening dance classes mean night time routine up to the sitter, and believe me some-days putting my kids to bed is a hour long drama filled adventure, with cups of water, pj’s that don’t “feel right” and triple hugs and kisses ( I don’t mind that one actually). Needless to say I don’t really want to pay a sitter to fight with my kids for bed. If the Dean is home, then it’s not so bad, which brings me to….

4. My husband farms – And right now its harvest. So as I write this, he is still running the Combine, and will be till after dark. I am a ” Harvest widow” as my mom would say. Now I’ve had this battle in my head and debated it with many friends, but I  need to always remind myself, that Harvest is where the income comes from. It’s our bread and butter.   The short weeks of the year that I am left to fend for my self, come the rewards of having a roof over our heads and food to eat.

So right now I will not complain and know that one day my kids will be old enough to leave at home while I go shake what MY mama gave me. In the mean time I will think of all you ladies in Airdrie and the ones at the school and maybe I’ll put on my own Zumba class in my living room. If fact a friend just got Wii dance, maybe I can borrow it for a few weeks until the crop is off.