Sunday, November 25, 2012

Dusting off the old blog...and possibly a new tradition.

I have had absolutely no desire to sit in front of my computer and blog over the last few months.  Partly because life has taken precedence and partly because the letter E is not working well, causing me to use spell check a LOT!

Life has been hectic since school started.  Lots of trips to OCTC for M with a final diagnosis of PDD NOS...more on that another day.  Lots of trying to figure myself out and what I really want in life.  I'm not that much closer to an answer; I don't know that I will be anytime soon either.

Now that December is here I feel a sense of calm coming over me.  I'm not sure why, but I force myself this time of year to stop and really reflect on what is important.  My kids, my family, health, togetherness....I could go on and on. 

This year I'm going to try and get it captured in a December Daily album.  I'm not making any big promises to myself or anyone to keep at this daily, but I'm going to try to take a picture a day, and tell a story of my December a day.  My plan is to once a week spend about an hour pulling it together.  Im using Kelly Purkey's December Daily kit, Ali Edwards December Daily Digital Overlays and a Simple Stories album with divided page protecors.  I think I have chosen simple and stress free but time will tell if I made simple choices.

I did my cover today.  It took an hour max.  I love that I was able to bring it together so fast without sacrificing time with The Bigs.  Its simple, just what I wanted it t be.

Whatever your December brings you, I hope you have a wonderful holiday season.  I'm off to work until the wee hours of the morn so that you might find fabulous for less.

Monday, September 3, 2012

Dear Michael

I'm having a hard time wrapping my head around the fact that you are starting full day Senior Kindergarten tomorrow.  It seems like just last week that I was fretting over you starting  school...period.

Taking the school bus for the first time, that just about completely sent me over the edge of over- protectiveness.  But you survived.  So did I.

And wasn't it just yesterday that you officially "graduated" from JK?  All those feelings of trepidation were soothed throughout the year with the help of some awesome teachers and EA's that helped you adjust to the class room routines.

I shouldn't be feeling so nervous for you to head back tomorrow, but I do.  I'm worried you may not have the extra support you might need.  I'm worried about socialization with the other children.  I'm mad at myself for not working with you harder to write your name during the summer.   I'm worried that no one will "Get You" like I do.  

You know what else?  I am so proud of you and every thing you have done from one year ago until this very night.
 You have started to gain better control of your coordination and learned to slowly ride your bike with training wheels.  You have learned a LOT about empathy and sharing and caring; mostly the hard way and usually involving your little Brother You have tried new food items, and even though it has taken you 5 minutes to eat a sliver of apple, you still did it.  You have learned to control your emotions a bit better and tantrums usually settle down around the 5 minute mark instead of the 60 minute mark.  And your eye contact has improved tenfold!

You like and love people easily.  And if I had to be pick one thing about you at this age that I adore, it is that.  You love to spin and twirl and run and jump and be in the general vicinity of other people.  I love that about you.  So if you can't write your name perfectly...big deal.  We'll work on it more together this year.  What's important is that you are you.  And I love you just the way you are little man.  Knock their socks off tomorrow, and always remember that I love you and I am so very proud of you.  

“Today you are You, that is truer than true. There is no one alive who is Youer than You.”  Dr. Seuss

Tuesday, August 7, 2012


Anyone there?

How long has it been since I blogged?  It feels like eons.  Truth is, I haven't had the desire to throw my thoughts out into to cyber space lately.  I have been a little bit of a Debby Downer and nobody needs to hear or read about that right?   Instead, I offer you a layout,
because that is what this blog was intended for; scrapbooking and funny Mom tidbits.

It felt good to get this done.  It had been sitting on my desk half complete for over two weeks.  I used to be so disciplined at getting the boys monthly pages done or at least a DPS of our monthly pictures.  Not so much for 2012.   I'm okay with that.  When the time is right, and when all of my creative stars align,  I will get back at it.  Maybe even on the last weekend of September when Crop and Create rolls into Ottawa.  I`ll be attending the event that  will have over 24 hours of scrappy mayhem.  Pretty excited.  Yes I am that geeky but what evs; we all know how often I get out...

Any how, that is all for tonight.  I`m off to ride Plasma Cars around my living room with The Bigs.

Nighty Night.

Monday, June 18, 2012

Ten Years ago I picked out a card for you.

It was the last one that you would ever get from me.

I'm not sure what the reason is, but lately I have been thinking about you more and more.

Last night I cried, I mean, really cried for you.

There are a lot of days when I  wish you were here. 

I wish you could see my children, the house I live in, talk shop or politics with me.

You always knew what made me tick, even without me saying anything.

You could usually tell by my voice if i needed my "old man".

I think i miss you so much lately because I feel like I do need you.

I need a different perspective on a lot of things.

I need a laugh, maybe even a drink with you.

I miss that.  Miss sitting on a patio just gabbing, having a Brown Cow and watching the people go by.

Today it would be different because, well, because I don't really drink anymore.

You would say: "Come on J.L.  Relax, have a drink"

It would make me smile...

I miss you Dad.

I just wanted to tell you that.



Thursday, June 7, 2012

This PDD thing isn't easy. Especially the wait. Waiting for the assessment. Waiting for someone to tell us yes or no. Waiting for some direction, waiting for someone to validate what I see.

Michael, you have been such a trooper. These past two years haven't always been easy, with me trying to figure you out, and you trying to find your way through this world. You have learned to navigate and express your needs through different means and I have learned to understand those different means. What sometimes seems the hardest, is trying to explain to other people what you are saying or what you want. And the other hard part? Those days that I miss your cues, and the inevitable chaos that comes with my misunderstanding. It is those times that I feel like the process isn’t coming fast enough for me. I know in the end that no one is going to give me all the answers and all knowledge that I need but maybe it will help me be more patient on the days when I feel that slipping.

You have grown so much this past year; working so hard with all of the occupational therapist and building relationships with your teachers. They all love you so much. I watch you in the playground some days and I feel the tears come to my eyes. They are tears of happiness because I see those relationships that have flourished. And other times they are tears from darker thoughts. I worry when I see you off by yourself, I worry that you might someday be the target of bullying, I worry that you will fall behind in school, and I worry that you will be labelled. And as quickly as those thoughts come, I push them away because regardless, you are going to be great at whatever YOU choose to do. You are MY hero and I love you more and more each day.

Saturday, May 5, 2012

Happy NSD!

What is NSD, you ask?

Well, today is National Scrapbook Day!  Can you believe that a whole day is dedicated to scrapbooking?  Makes me giggle.  I haven't done much in the way of memory keeping lately, but I  managed to get two pages completed for the boys albums.  ( It may or may not have taken weeks to complete these...)

Both of the pictures are from last summer.  As you can see it really has been a while and I am far behind on my pages.  I have a 12 hour crop coming up in two weeks that I may be slightly excited about.  Twelve whole hours to myself.  That happens once a year.  So excited!

Happy NSD my scrappy friends!

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Last Saturday night I was checking in at my favorite social network sites when I noticed a message from an old high school friend.  She was writing to let me know that my best friend from high schools' mother had passed away.

Its funny ( and by funny, I really mean not so much...) how one message can send you spiraling backwards in time.  In  an instant I was back in 1988.

This friend of mine was my partner in crime so to speak.  We started to smoke together, we drank a lot some together, we went to bush parties, had house parties, hung around the War Memorial flirting with all the skate boarders.  We loved the skate boarders.  Hell, I even busted my wrist that summer trying to do an ollie.  But I digress.

I spent so much time at her house.  So much that my Mom commented tonight how she thought that it was my second home.  I didn't want to tell her, but at that time I felt like it was more home than ours.  My parents were going through a separation and our duplex on Louisbourg was not somewhere that I wanted to be.

I called my friend that night.  I hadn't talked to her in a few years but her phone number was tucked away nicely  in my memory bank.    I know when I lost my Dad and my Brother , the last thing I wanted to do was reach out to people, but I was comforted when they reached out to me.

We talked  for a while about her Mom and shared some stories about her.  I have such wonderful memories being in their home; being in their basement watching Ferris Buellers Day Off  while her Mom sat in her chair and knit.  I spent many  mornings in their kitchen and many a night at their  dinning table.  It makes my heart heart for my friend that her Mom wont be in that house anymore.

I attended the wake this evening to see my old friend and pay my respect.  I was feeling a lot of trepidation about going.   I hate funeral homes.  With .  A.  Passion.  They smell of lilies and I will never, ever, ever like that flower.  EVER.  They remind me of the losses that my family has had.  And you inevitably bump into someone that makes you uncomfortable.    I know these points are all silly and irrelevant, however they are my feelings, and they are coming from the girl who hates funeral homes so much that she left her own brother's wake because she couldn't stand to be there one more minute.  And not because I didn't love him, but rather because I did.

I had a sick feeling in my stomach the entire drive across the river.  I walked in and saw my friend and I wanted to cry.  I asked all the questions that one asks at these things.  All the ones I hated, but found myself asking anyways. ( My Apologies D.)  I smelled those damn funeral  flowers, and I saw the one person that I knew would make me uncomfortable.

I left disappointed in myself for not trying to bridge the gap.  I left sad for my friend and her sister.  I left with some more memories that I wasn't expecting to resurface but they did.  I left happy that I reconnected with my old friends but sad that I let so much time pass, and that I let my feelings of insecurities get in the way of keeping in touch with these girls, who whether they know it or not, had a huge impact on the person I am today.  I left and went for a drive.

 I drove along the water, past the marina and thought of my friend and her Mom.  I  felt like I could drive forever tonight.  I'd  like to say that on my drive I had some mind blowing revelations about life and death, but sadly I did not.  Looking at the river made me think of how rapidly things change in your life.  One minute the waters are still and peaceful, and the next choppy and rough.  ( In awe of my metaphoric analogies, aren't you?)  I think we all want the peacefulness of the still waters, but lately they seem elusive.  Tonight just  reminded me that its not just me.  


Sunday, March 18, 2012

1990 to 2012

Yesterday I was listening to satellite radio and this song came on.
1990 came flooding back like it was yesterday.

It's funny how something can stay with us for years.
A song that speaks to us, a scent, an icon.
This was, and still is, a gentle reminder to me that life is not always going to be perfect.

Everyone has their battles to fight.
Some are more complicated than others.

And sometimes it's not fighting the battle,
but getting past that image of your life that you planned for yourself that will lift the heavy clouds.

I think my rain clouds may have been lifted by this song, and by a decision to try a little harder.


Friday, March 9, 2012

Some words of wisdom.

Just because you have not eaten in 10 hours does not mean you should go through a KFC drive through.  Not only will you experience the longest wait of your life, but also, the food will taste like crap in a bag.

When you see the smallest amount of snow, you should probably go straight home,and not the long way.  That small amount of snow might will turn into white out conditions on the back roads, causing  a skunk to blend in nicely, which can only end craptastically.

When you decide to go to the store to get some ice  cream and discover one last container of your favorite flavor that you're fairly certain has been discontinued, don't buy it.  It's probably stale.  You won't enjoy it, and you will be angry at yourself for buying something that tastes like crap in a frozen container.

Block your nose when you get out of the car because the smell of burnt skunk is not pleasant.  Worse than crap.

ALWAYS resolve issues with your children.  They will not go to sleep peacefully until you do.  You will become frustrated at the people who didn't heed your advice on this, so at a bare minimum make sure you do it otherwise you run the risk of feeling like crap.

A fire, regardless if electric or wood burning will always help take the edge off.

At least I'm stilling smiling.

Saturday, February 25, 2012


  • Woke at 6:20, which incidentally is considered sleeping in.
  • U-tubed  this song that I woke up with in my head and sang it all morning.
  •  Finally watched the entire Monsters Inc movie with the kiddos after approximately 24 attempts.
  • Checked in at my favorite social network sites.
  • Read a chapter or two of this book.
  • Had some hot chocolate with the kiddos.
  • Played with Lego.
  • Daydreamed.
  • Napped for 2 hours.  (alle-frickin-luia )
  • Grocery shopped.
  • Went for a nice long drive.
  • Had soft tacos for dinner with homemade guacamole.
  • Surfed a little more.
  • Got this song stuck in my head all night.
  • Danced with J, he was seemed to help.
  • Intervened on a spaceship meltdown between two little people.
  • Tickled M and played the elevator game.
  • Read J this book, three times.
  • Stubbed my pinkie toe for the second time in as many nights trying to round up The Bigs for bed.
  • Looked at  pictures of the boys when they were wee.
  • Daydreamed and surfed some more.
That was my completely random, didn't accomplish anything extraordinary,  day.

Friday, February 24, 2012

This is the post that has been written and re-written in my head more times that I care to share.  Its time to get it off my chest in some small way.

When my son was  an infant, I labelled him serious.  It was difficult to get him to smile, laugh, make eye contact.  He seemed to be developing normally otherwise.  I figured his personality would be more like mine; quiet until he was comfortable, then goofy when he trusted you.  I was pretty much on cue with that.  He seemed to learn things fast.  I thought he was a genius at eighteen months because he was reading along with me, counting, lining his red cars in a perfect row from smallest to largest.

He hit two and I braced myself.  I was waiting for something terrible to happen that never really did.  Sure he had tantrums but not anything monumental.  I could handle them.  He was given time outs in his room because he wouldn't sit on the floor.  He didn't understand that he had to stay in one place.  No big deal, he went to his room.

Three hit and I started to worry about school.  His vocabulary seemed to have stalled.  We were not having two way conversations that most kids at that age were having with their Mom.  I brushed it off.  School was more than a year away and in a year there is a ton of development.

Three was not fun.  And by not fun, I mean it didn't think I was going to survive.  We had wild tantrums in the street.  Hair was pulled, arms were bitten, shins were kicked.  No communication as to why it was happening,  but I could gauge pretty accurately from external cues what was going to set him off.   Not walking in the direction that he wanted to walk in, a different bedtime routine, his brother taking his toy, leaving a location he wasn't ready to leave.  All sound normal for a toddler who is desperately trying to control his world.  What I also noticed was my huge inabilities to reach him during those meltdowns.  I couldn't soothe him, I couldn't explain why we were doing what we were doing in a way that he understood or accepted.  I couldn't get him to look at me, I couldn't soothe him when he hurt himself, I couldn't break his attention away from the repetitive play that he was involved in.  I knew something was there but I wasn't sure what.  I always saw my Sister looking at my at different times with questions in her eyes but she never asked the question because she knew I wasn't ready to give her an answer.

On the night of his fourth birthday he was in his room, standing on the rail of his brothers crib and jumping off of it onto his bed.  There was no fear there, no comprehension that he could hurt himself   He never understood danger.  My Sister was in the room and gently asked me if I thought something was there. I started to cry and say yes I think there may be something wrong.  I cried because I knew she saw what I was seeing but never once  used the words different or wrong.  She used the words special.  I had seen her watch him over the years and I knew she saw the same things I did.

At his four year old check up his pediatrician watched him and listen to what I had to say about his development.  He made a referral to a specialist that deals with developmental and attention disorders.  I remember sitting in the specialist office, willing myself not to cry but looking for a little bit of validation that I wasn't going crazy, that maybe my son needed some extra help.  He put his pen down, looked at me and said,  " Mom, what do you think is wrong?"  The tears came because it was my opportunity to get a little validation.  I had gone online and done some research.  I had nailed down some of his behaviors and attributed them to something on the Autism spectrum.  He listen to me, let me cry, and redirected my thoughts.  He felt that it was possibly Aspergers  or a Pervasive Development Disorder.  He immediately put in a referral to OCTC for a physiological assessment to determine the root cause of M`s development delays.

I have cried A LOT over the past year for many reasons.  I don't want my son to be labelled.  I don't like it when people tell me that Aspergers is the excuse de jours  for behavioral problems with children.  I don't like it when  people tell me that it will be really unfortunate if he doesn't have anything wrong with him and that I have taken it to the level that I have because now all of this will be in his school file.  I don't like it when someone who is supposed to love us sticks their head in the sand and avoids the issues.  I don't like being the only one to advocate for my child. I don't like feeling alone. 

He had his first appointment at OCTC today.  Not with a psychologist but with some different therapist that could recommenced strategies to help him during the long wait for his assessment.  The resources that they will provide is astounding.  Speech therapy, dietitians, social workers, occupational therapists.  Nothing short of amazing.  I`m taking what ever I can get with no pride getting in the way.  He deserves everything, this kid of mine.  All I really want for him are the tools that he needs to grow and succeed.  I don't need my child to be a doctor or lawyer.  I will never put that sort of pressure on him.  I am not the competitive Mom that has their child enrolled in so many activities that they forget what it is to just play.  I have walked away from different opportunities for myself over the past year because the timing is wrong.  I put myself on the back burner frequently because that is what I believe I should do.  He needs me to advocate for him and that is what I plan to do.

Love you kiddo.

“So be sure when you step, Step with care and great tact. And remember that life's A Great Balancing Act. And will you succeed? Yes! You will, indeed! (98 and ¾ percent guaranteed) Kid, you'll move mountains.”
― Dr. Seuss

Monday, February 20, 2012


A blogging one that is.
Most things are going on the back burner for now.
This is where I need to be.

Enjoy life my friends. 
It really is fleeting.


Monday, January 23, 2012

Christmas 2011

I didn't post much about our holidays in December, mostly because finding fabulous for less was keeping me on my toes.  Getting home each night after a hectic day usually meant unwinding with the family and the mad dash to bedtime.  Then came year end inventory.  Oh how I loathe thee.

I digress,

Christmas was in fact great.  I make it a point every year to be prepared, if not done and ready to enjoy the season before we hit December.  Yes I am THAT person.  I have to be THAT person with my job otherwise I will turn into some sort of female version of Ebenezer and we don't want that to happen do we?  I hear so many people that work in my industry just so grumpy and fed up by the time we get to Christmas Eve that it is just plain sad.  Not me my friends.  I'm that chipper one in the corner belting out Christmas Carols that doesn't care if you can hear me or not.  Chipper because my shopping is done, my home is decorated and I may have a few dozen cookies baked.

You can throw something at me now if you like....

But seriously, it is the most wonderful time of the year so why not be happy. I'm grumpy far to many other weeks of the year, I don't need to be for those four weeks. But I also don't have any time for anything else because I gave all my chipperness away in the 14 hours that I was awake.  No scrapping, not allot of visiting.  Just home and work...home and work.  I'm okay with that too.

But now that it is all over I have  slightly more time to do things I scrapping.  Tina gave me some papers to work with waaaaaaaaaaaay back in October and guess what??  I scrapped!!!

The first one is some funny pictures that were captured on Christmas day.  I love them all because we all looked like we were having fun.

Huge fan of scrapping the 3x4 right now.  so easy to create a collage in Picasa and send to your developer.  You can fit way more pictures on a single 12x12 layout.

Me and the bigs with Santa.  My kids wont go near him alone.  Also, I forgot to put a title on this one so I made the teeny tiny chipboard the title just above the picture.  It says "Have you been good?"  I thought it was appropriate enough...and easy.

And then lastly, one about Scout, our elf.  The boys LOVE him, especially M.  I have been so impressed that he hasn't tried to touch him for the last two Christmases.

I have one or two more Christmas themed pages that I want to do.  As much as I love to scrap the everyday, I love to scrap the holidays.  They are part of our memories that I want to remember.  In the mean time though I'm reading this in my limited spare time:

So far so good.  I got a little emotional within the first three pages of reading it, but that story is for another day.  I'm looking forward to the moments that I can curl up with it.

Have a great day!

Friday, January 13, 2012

December Project 12

Ahhhhhhhhhhhh all done this challenge for 2011!!!

I have to admit I feel a little relieved.  I didn't think I was going to get them all done this year but I did and I'm happy.

Funny thing, I started out this year with a plan  to stick with some basic products and a journalling plan and I  veered away. 

The only thing that stayed consistent was my FB updates.  If I continue on with this challenge in 2012, I think I am going to continue with the updates as my journalling.

Since I like everyday scrapping I think it fits perfectly with monthly recap pages.

So here is the sketch:

Loved this one.

4x6 photos...check

All of them lined up in a row...check, check!

Pretty pink Jilli Bean papers from Tina's to work with...Check, check and check!

Here is what I came up with:

I wish that our skin tones were not all blown out but that's what happens with cheapo point and shoots.

Big news though...mama got a new camera.

A Nikon D3100.

I am still learning how to use it and I think I will be going for some lessons.

I know how to change the settings but I am not applying them correctly...AGH!

I honestly cant wait to really know how to use it though.

That's it for back in a few days with another layout....Shocking!!!

We are hunkered down here enduring what is seems to be the Apocalypse of storms...Im sure I'll have other stuff to share!