Friday, July 29, 2005
Okay, I have REALLY got to do something useful in the near future when I’m here….like WORK.

But, while I’m in the process of not working, I’ve been on this morning reading and, as usual, laughing my butt off! (yes, I wish it really would melt off from laughing, but no positive results so far). If you’re not aware of Snopes, it’s a site dedicated to discounting urban legends passed around by e-mail…you know the ones “please pass this on to everyone you know. If you just save one person from sticking a straw up their nose, it’ll all be worth it!”

I got an e-mail this morning about Mars coming as close to the earth as it will in the next 200 or so years and I wanted to see if I should book August 27th on my calendar to watch something interesting. So I went on Snopes to confirm it and it turns out this actually happened on August 27, 2003 and I missed it…maybe next time…

So, then I get to reading some of the pages and I come to one called “Unanswerables”. These are e-mails that random people send in with questions to be answered by the guys at snopes…HILARIOUS page! It’s here: Unanswerables

This one was the best:

I've heard that it is impossible to take a lightbulb out of your mouth once one puts it in, without either breaking the bulb or dislocating the jaw.

Do you know if this is true? I'm counting on you - my husband is really curious, and I don't want to have to drive him to the hospital...

This is something my brother Gobbles would do…sadly. I can just see my sister-in-law on the phone…

Time until I’m back with my family: 6 hours, 30 minutes to a Long Weekend!!!

Laundry list: we folded and folded during “Without a Trace” last night

Running Schedule: not good. I went last night, but only walked…this butt will never melt.

Thursday, July 28, 2005
Baby's Named a Bad, Bad Thing
If I wasn't at work reading this right now, I'd be laughing out loud! I got the link from someone's blog I was reading yesterday and can't remember now who to thank...if it's you, give me a shout.

Makes me glad my kids' names are pretty normal...if you know me though, you know that bella's name is a little unusual for a girl.

Once again the website is Baby's Named a Bad, Bad've GOT TO give it a read!

Time until I'm back with my family: 2 hours, 12 minutes

Laundry list: I have really got to get to that...if I could see the washing machine for the pile of clothes!

Running Schedule: Going tonight...Goal: Run all the way to white house at end of block...don't die.

Wednesday, July 27, 2005
14 Reasons to Run Around With Flowers
1. Because the receptionist comes to your desk with a shocked look and says, “There’s a delivery guy here with flowers for you.”

2. Because you NEVER get flowers. Okay, you do sometimes…lots even…but none today…until right now!

3. Because they are Bee-U-T-ful!

4. Because white daisies and pink miniature roses like to be shown off.

5. Because the man you’ve been married to for fourteen years most obviously still loves you…or at least thinks about you…or at least remembered it was your anniversary (after much prodding…ahem!)…or is at least looking to get lucky…

6. Because you haven’t told absolutely everybody in the office that you’ve been married for fourteen years…

7. Because they don’t mind oohing and awing over the flowers while you run from office to office interrupting phone calls, delaying estimates and knocking down clients...

8. Because they’re in a glass vase with a raffia bow.

9. Because you thought all you were getting was an ice-cream from DQ later tonight.

10. Because instead of ice-cream, you got flowers…daisies and miniature roses…in a glass vase with a raffia bow.

11. Because you’re happy you married that guy fourteen years ago.

12. Because you know…

13. Because you’re sure…

14. Because he’s yours…


A Post For Granny
Because I know that Granny reads every day, I thought that I should update her and the blog on three of her favourite beings…updates on the fourth being can be found here.

Zeenee is making me run! She’s done it twice AND made me commit to every Sunday, Tuesday and Thursday night…for the rest of my life or until activities start again in September and we have no time…whichever comes first (my life could easily end by August with all this running!) We run in a large square, going left out the front door, to the end of the block and around. So far, my severely out of shape body hasn’t made it to the end of the block running and my legs hurt so much from stopping to walk, that I have to run again to make them feel better…ouch! Our second run last night was a little better as I ran more than I walked, but holy cow will I feel better when I don’t have so much fat chick to push around the block. Zeenee, being the athlete that she is, runs the whole way and waits patiently on the front steps calmly drinking her water as I huff and puff and whine down the last stretch a full 10 minutes after her. She is truly going to ROCK when she goes to high school in September…I think she should consider track!

Anabella came to me this morning and insisted she should be able to take her stud/sleeper earrings out of her newly pierced ears so she can wear the regular ones she bought at the Stampede. You know how stubborn she is…she fought with me for about five minutes insisting that she had them pierced June 3rd and it was now six weeks later and time to take them out. I had a hard time convincing her that it was actually July 3rd and she’d only had them in three weeks! I told her, “Remember it was after you started summer vacation. We were in Claires getting them pierced and Granny was hiding at the back of the store with Zeenee because she hates the sight of blood and pain…and I was at the front of the store with you, holding your hand and trying not to faint at the sight of them poking a giant needle through my baby girl!” So she finally resigned to the fact that she’ll have to wait until school starts to wear regular earrings…and I get to wait another 3-4 weeks before I have to help her take those things out of her ears for the first time…I had mine pierced at 7 and I still remember how much it hurt to change them the first time. Not. Nice.

Budgie is just loving our swims in the river! The river by our house is, I swear, warmer than most lakes (not a good sign for global warming I’m sure), so we’ve been taking advantage and heading out for an end-of-day cooling off most nights these last few weeks. While the rest of us mincingly tiptoe in, Budgie rips off his shirt and goes barreling in like a dog chasing a stick! I think maybe that swimming could be his thing…we’ve spent so much time trying to find a sport for him that he likes. Soccer is a no. Football is a no. Hockey is a no. Maybe he could do competitive swimming. Maybe I could just suck it up and be one of those mothers freezing on the bleachers at the outdoor pool at 5:30 in the weekday mornings from May to September…maybe, but it would hurt!

So there’s your update Granny…call me with any questions, concerns, edits and ommissions. Love you!

Time until I’m back with my family: 6 hours. 8 minutes. A REALLY long time!

Laundry list: So so very much!

Tuesday, July 26, 2005
“He” called me at work today to ask me what I wanted to do tomorrow night for our 14th anniversary. Why do I always have to come up with the ideas? I've only been hinting that I'd really love to eat at Montanas again soon...or gee, there's a few movies we'd both enjoy! Meet me halfway here honey and suggest SOMETHING!

I’ve already made suggestions for the big 15 next year…The BIG 15 should include the following:

I want a surprise diamond ring. Preferably a Canadian mined diamond (complete with polar bear stamp) set in white gold.

I should be presented with the surprise diamond ring at a surprise dinner at an expensive restaurant. Preferably Diva at the Met.

Whilst being presented with my surprise diamond ring at my surprise dinner there will be a surprise violin player, with a solo in my honour. Surprise me with the song.

Before being whisked away to my surprise dinner with the surprise violin player where I will be presented with my surprise diamond ring, I will come home to a surprise black-classy-evening-gown wrapped beautifully on my bed with a surprise note telling me to “Get dressed for a wonderful evening.”

The “whisking” of me will take place in a surprise limousine rented to take me to my surprise dinner with the surprise violin player where I will be presented with my surprise diamond ring whilst wearing my surprise black-classy-evening-gown.

So…I’ve already planned next year…why shouldn’t I expect that he plan something for this year?

Time until I’m back with my family: 1 hour, 25 minutes (Zeenee is making me run again tonight. Heart. Attack!)

Laundry list: 2 whites, 2 colours…much folding!

Monday, July 25, 2005
Tag, I'm It
I was tagged by landismom at Bumblebee Sweet Potato to name 5 things I miss from my childhood.

1. Skateboarding. My best friend Lou-Lou and I were the "Skate Champions of Abbeydale Drive". Her block had the best sidewalk for skateboarding. It was a continuous tar sidewalk instead of a concrete one with the cracks in it, like the one in front of my house. Her and I pilferred our younger brothers skateboards, taught ourselves to ride and eventually learned to jump rocks (okay, pebbles) without falling to our demise, sans helmets and padding.

2. Our swingset. I used to swing for hours in our backyard talking to my invisible friend, Cindy from the Brady Bunch (this crazy lady was 7 okay!). I told her all of my hopes and dreams...none of which included working for a living (hmmm). My brothers and I had many other uses for this swingset, including draping sheets over it to make a tent and placing our plastic pool underneath and running the hose down the slide to make a waterslide. We always wanted a Slip'n Slide, but our parents never relented...we made our own fun anyways.

3. Skiing. I was fortunate enough to learn to snow ski when I was about 12. Our whole family eventually took up the sport and we used to go out almost every weekend in the winter time. Sunshine, Lake Louise, Fernie, Kimberley, Big Mountain...we skiied them all. To this day I can't figure out how my parents ever afforded buy equipment for three kids and themselves, pay for lift tickets for five AND take us for a ski holiday almost every Christmas...we were lucky kids! Skiing is something we'd love our get my kids into, but with lift tickets costing around $80/day, not to mention equipment and transportation this sport has been left to the wealthy elite.

4. Time for reading. When we were kids there was time for just about anything and I filled a lot of my days with reading. Nancy Drew, Judy Blume, S.E. Hinton...I would pick up ANYTHING and read it. I remember the first time I picked up a copy of the Readers' Digest while camping at the age of eight. I've read every issue ever since and still devour each one in about two hours the very day it comes in the mail. I still get easily lost in a book (my husband says he could have an affair right in front of me while I'm reading!), but I have to carefully schedule in reading time around the kids now. The good thing is, as they become older I can make them all do quiet reading and join in!

5. Freedom. Especially on summer days and weekends, Lou-Lou and I would set off bikeriding about 9am and my parents wouldn't see me again until dinnertime. We would visit other friends, catch lunch at someone else's house, go riding way out by the train tracks...and nobody worried. Certainly, this is something that my kids DO NOT get to do. We are now in the age of scheduled activities and play dates. I'm sure this is why they have 5 million dollars worth of toys, don't play with any of them and have the imaginations of cucumbers.

So that's my list. I'm supposed to tag others to do the same, but seeing as I don't know many other bloggers enough to ask such a thing I'll tag my CHSIL (chic hip sista-in-law)yuppies procreate and let the rest of you readers (all two of you) decide if you'd like to do it...let me know if you do!

Thursday, July 21, 2005
Eye've Got Something to Report...
Budgie had his three month eye specialist appointment today at Childrens. “He” got the day off to take him and I had to work. Don’t even get me started on that one…mothers should be able to be there for ALL appointments! I didn’t even dare ask after taking a week and a half off for holidays recently. All the kicking and screaming and crying and whining I’d have to hear from the FOF was just not worth it…I’ll go with Budgie in Sept/Oct to the next appt.

Budgie has Amblyopia, more commonly known as lazy eye. It was discovered when he was in Kindergarten by the school district’s testers. We had never noticed that he had any problems with seeing. I guess all of his life up to then he’d just used his good right eye for seeing…the bad eye never wandered or looked different and I guess his brain just compensated. Funny, when the testing lady gave me the letter after class that day she said, “He’s either seeing nothing out of that left eye or he’s screwing with us.” My response? “He’s screwing with you!” He’s always been a little bit of a monster (little? Okay, bigger than little) and I figured he was just having a game with them. Good job we got it checked out for real…the little guy was nearly legally blind in that eye! (enter coke bottle glasses, but only on one eye…the other is clear)

After patching for over a year (but only seriously for the last 6 months – another kicking, screaming, bullying, cajoling, bribing ordeal in itself) his eye went from over 200 down to 80…so at his last appointment his eyes were 25/80, a huge improvement! This time they only saw a small improvement over last time, but at least we haven’t gone backwards at any point.

He called me at work after the appointment to give me the news:

Hi Mommy!
Hi Buddy, how was it?
Did your eye get better?
Yep, but only a little bit.
Did they put you on those machines and measure your eye?
What? Measure my eyes?
Yeah, did they?
Mommy, you already know how big my eyes are. You don’t have to measure silly!
Okay then. Can I talk to Daddy now?
No sorry. Daddy is not available at this time. **click** (he hung up on me!)

Do you see why I thought this kid was screwing with those eye testers? He is freaking evil!

Time until I’m back with my family: 1 hour, 40 minutes

Laundry List: Done, done and done!

Wednesday, July 20, 2005
We're Peacekeepers!
So does anyone have any suggestions for kidnapping a 28 year old, strong guy? I need to hide him from the army, so they can’t send him to Afghanistan now or at any time in the near future.

First I read that Canadians should expect casualties of our soldiers serving in Afghanistan. They are serving in areas where US soldiers have been maimed and killed by suicide bombers, car bombs, etc. EXPECT CASUALTIES?! No, no, we're peacekeepers. PEACEKEEPERS!!! You know, those friendly Northeners who say "have a beer, eh!". As a whole we don't take ourselves very seriously, but THIS is not funny! We're Peacekeepers...we don't shoot, we bring aid, we're the NICE GUY!!

Then. THEN. I read today that our government wants to send our fleet of Sea King Helicopters over to aid in the peacekeeping efforts. What? What?!!! These so called “helicopters” are famous for falling out of the sky without notice. They are older than my mother’s Beatles records and the tin they’re made out of isn’t fit to be recycled into tuna cans! The only help our military will get out of the Sea Kings is if they fall out of the sky on the enemy…but that’s not very good for peacekeeping is it?...AND we're we even have an enemy?

This young man I want to kidnap has recently been trained in the fine art of BOMB DISPOSAL and is on call to go to Hell-ghanistan! Why can’t they send him up to Alert, in the Northwest Territories where he can protect the Inuit from wild sled dogs?

This young man is my baby brother…Uncle Freddy Fortine. He is coming home to visit today for two weeks.

I have 14 days to make a plan…

Time until I'm back with my family: 1 hour, 8 minutes (then I get to see Freddy!)

Laundry List: Zeenee did it...and the vacuuming...and washed the floor...and scrubbed the bathroom. Uhm, luckiest Mom alive anyone?

Tuesday, July 19, 2005
My Life is in the Crapper
So we are in the process of ripping tiles out of our bathroom in preparation for a newly renovated john. We have a REALLY BAD mould problem in there (Lower Mainland dwellers always have this problem) and we’ve been worried about everyone’s health surrounding it. Did you ever see that episode of CSI where the weightlifter dies of a mould infestation in his house…when the coroner pushes on his eyeball all this black goo comes squishing out of his eye…that thought is plaguing me, I keep imagining chest pain means my heart is turning black and I refuse to cry, as I don’t want to wipe black tears off my face…needless to say it freaked me out and we bumped bathroom renovations to the front of our “things to do that we never have enough money for” list.

Besides ripping out all of the walls and starting again, we are replacing the shower with a nice corner unit and installing a new toilet and pedestal sink.

We are taking off the “I can’t believe anyone ever thought that white with brown semicircle tiles were cool” 30 year old tiles (stuck to every wall!) and replacing that with, well, just paint. Zeenee was showing me a picture of her and her best friend ‘Nita. I asked her what they were doing eating in our bathroom. Seems they weren’t in our bathroom, they were in ‘Nita’s kitchen! They put those ugly tiles in everywhere three decades ago! Must have been a sale.

Also, we are removing the CARPET from the floors and replacing it with either ceramic tile or lino. What is with people installing carpet in bathrooms and kitchens? Did they get a good deal? Did they think it was easier to clean urine out of carpet than mopping it off of lino? (boys anyone?) Were they afraid they couldn’t get a good match in lino to those lovely brown and white semicircle tiles?

So this is my life for the next four to fifty weeks ("He" and I are doing it ourselves - eek!). I'll post pictures of before and after. Can’t wait to have a livable, healthy space again.

Mind Clutter
* My bladder must be smaller than a peanut…either that or I go to the bathroom so much at work because I'm bored.

* One of my bosses has been glaring at me since I got back from holidays and doesn't strike up conversations like he used to…is he upset with me or mentally ill?

* My "New Improved I'm-giving-up-all-sugar-for-life" diet isn't going well. Unfortunately there is sugar in coffee, coke, chocolate, honey-orange glazed hazelnuts, Jelly Bellys, mini Toblerone bars and those donuts the copier guy brought as an apology for supplying us with a crappy machine.

* My fingers type thin air constantly as someone talks to me, yet I only test at 70wpm…you'd think all the practice would pay off better.

* My brother is coming to stay with us tomorrow and I have to go home and sandblast the house to get it clean…all in one night…plus tidy the kids rooms…plus take the tiles off the walls in the bathroom to take to the dump on Saturday…plus water the lifeless green aparitions I call plants…I might try to sleep at some point also.

* Speaking of the dump, we're renting a truck this weekend to get rid of the clutter in the backyard that is making our house look like it should have wheels and a hitch.

* My arms hurt from cutting down 3 bushes in our backyard last night with 200lb pruning shears. Maybe this is how Arnie feels after a good workout…kind of like Arnie, but with a gut and a large bum.

* Going to the river and dipping your toes in for a half hour after pruning your garden is sooooooo theraputic…especially watching your girls laugh at their little brother who wades in up to his neck…no fear that boy.

* I wonder if the girl next to me ever suspects that I'm not doing my work a lot of the time…accounting doesn't involve this much typing…Doesn't matter, I can get everything done in half the time I spend here…just don't tell anyone or they'll give me more mindless work or *gasp* filing!

Time until I'm back with my family: 3 hours

Laundry List: Zeenee is doing a great job of keeping up whilst on summer vacation!

Friday, July 15, 2005
Pretty In Pink
Do you like the new look? I LOOOOOOOOOVE Pink!!!

Growing up as a redhead, I was always told I couldn't wear pink or red. Well, this year I finally rebelled and bought myself no less than 5 different pink shirts! I discovered I look pretty good in less good than I look in my wardrobe staples, blue and black. As Zeenee said when I bought the first pink blouse..."Cool Mom, pink is the new blue!"

Friday Stuff
Ze Bills!!! Ze Bills!!! I feel like the Hunchback of Notre Dame! Leave your job for 2 weeks and come back to 48 stacks of 5 million pieces of paper! I do accounts payable, so I have been costing, entering, discounting and printing for three days straight….and there’s no end in sight!!

At least it’s not me that owes Home Depot $2500 or Bell Mobility $5000/month…I would need a CEO position to pay for it (or my own construction company)! I’ve always thought that if I had the money from just one month’s worth of bills from this place, I could retire happily…mmm retire…

“He Who Can No Longer Be Named” bought a new lawnmower last night. Ours crapped out just before our holidays and I urged him to go get one last night and mow before we became the scourge of the neighbourhood (have you ever seen the rate of grass growth where we live? Which I can’t tell you where that is!). “He’s” the type of shopper who has to check five hundred places for price, check the internet for details, think about it for 7 years and then buy something. Sometimes we’ll go out to buy something and come home empty handed because “He” just couldn’t bring himself to spend the money quite yet. I swear he wastes more money in gas to and from Canadian Tire than he saves on sales!

“He Who Can No Longer Be Named” and I have had three days off without the kids. They’re staying in another city (can’t tell you where, but all three of my loyal readers know) with their Granny and Poppa. It’s been kind of neat. We’ve eaten supper late, left the dishes a couple of times, surfed the net, watched silly reality TV shows. But last night I ran around like a headless chicken cleaning and laundering and gardening…I felt normal again…normal but childless. Tonight is our last night of freedom, so we’re going to catch a movie with my brother and his wife…”The Longest Yard”…probably not a wise choice, but who watches only Academy Award quality movies?

Time until I’m back with my family: 7 hours until back with “He”…1 day and 7 hours to kids

Laundry List: I only had two loads last night. I haven’t had that little amount of laundry in 13 years! I have time to wash curtains! (but I won't)

Wednesday, July 13, 2005
Watch out for black helicopters circling overhead...
I'm really depressed about this blogging thing since "someone" told me I shouldn't tell people when/if/where/how we're going on holidays, shouldn't post pictures of the kids, shouldn't specify what time of the day we're all sleeping, etc. So, to my loyal readers (all three of you), please restrain yourselves from stealing my identity, my fabulous credit rating, my Ikea art collection and the rotting leftovers in my fridge.

Here is a new updated picture of my family, sans Zeenee who was probably sleeping over at a friends house when it was taken.

Oh and my holidays were maybe great or maybe not...I can't specify.

Time until I'm back with my family: No comment.

Laundry list: have my permission to steal this.

Monday, July 04, 2005
Starring Hubby as Goldmember
So that sunburn that my husband got last weekend at bella's tournament is wreaking havoc on us all...he is peeling enough to make a snake envious! We were sitting in the ABC Restaurant having breakfast on our way to Kelowna the other day...imagine my disgust at glancing over the table at him and seeing a large piece of skin sticking up from the top of his closely shaven head!!! Eeeeeeeeeeeewwwwwwww!!!

Then he peels a giant piece off in the car and does the Austin Powers/Goldmember thing where he pretends to eat the skin, forcing the kids and I into fits of screams...very funny honey!

Needless to say, I can't wait until the "Lepper" is fully finished with his molting...I'm having trouble eating around him!

Friday, July 01, 2005
Our Home and Native Land
Happy Birthday to the country I'm very proud to call my home!