Well, I am running on not much sleep. The new addition to our family kept me up most of the night.
Yes, you read correctly. The reason I could not post (aside from it being a chaotic time of year anyway) was that I left on Friday for my home country.
I drove to Vancouver, left the car in extended parking and flew to Calgary. Two of my brothers picked me up and I spent the weekend there playing with my nephew. He will be six months old on the 20th and the little (HUGE) guy weighs over 22 lbs! And can I just say he is CUTE!?!? They gave me a 5X7 photo of him dressed as Tarzan, holding a stuffed monkey. I wish SO BAD that I could post it on here, but alas. They are firm on no posting pics of him. Goofs. Teehee You may recall that I went up there this past June when he was born and helped them out with him. Man, has he changed!
Our oldest brother and a good friend of his from high school (who had come with him to Calgary) drove me to my parents'. Was nice to chat and catch up with them. Mum and Dad were at a potluck with one of their grief groups when I got there, so I called my other brother, Sean (the only one I would not see since he is staying in South Dakota for the holidays) and spent a few hours on the phone with him. My oldest brother had to drop me and drive to Northern Saskatchewan. He is a social worker up there and had to be at work Monday morning of course.
Was lovely to see my parents again! I have not seen them for a year, when we went up last Christmas. They are doing much better than they were this time last year. They let me listen to my brother's radio interview about his book on the CBC. Sean was sent a copy and I want other people to get to listen, but we are not allowed to make copies. Sean just lets my parents have it. Was very cool to hear him, he did a great job!
Monday morning, we packed up their three week old foster baby and they took me to my friend C's house. You may recall from posts last January that C came for a visit. She had NO IDEA that I was coming and thought that she was just going out for coffee with my parents. Needless to say, she was pretty shocked when I showed up and my parents dropped us at the Mall. We borrowed a wheelchair at the mall and I spent the day with her, shopping and wheeling her about. She was concerned it would be hard on me as it was almost a year ago when I saw her and bring back flashbacks of pushing my baby brother in his wheelchair. I did much better this time and we had a great day!! The best of all was seeing her.
That night Mum and I went to another of their grief groups while Dad stayed home with the baby. I had gone last year also and it was nice to see some of the people again. Most of them have lost spouses, but we are all there to help each other. I don't know, and my parents agree, how they would have survived the death of my brother without these wonderful groups!
Tuesday was my parents' 42nd Wedding anniversary. We spent the day shopping together and had a great day. We went out to eat that night at one of our favourite restaurants and had a great talk. We all cried a little bit as we spoke of my baby brother and laughed remembering times with him. It was very healing for me. I was not strong enough to go this past summer for the one year anniversary of his death, but was felt stronger now and had a real need to be with my parents.
Yesterday morning, we went out to near the town I grew up three miles North of. The very town that my brother's latest book is set in. One my Mum's best friends breeds dogs and my parents helped pay for a puppy for our kids for Christmas. Here is our latest addition:
This was the surprise I was talking about, Jude! Isn't he PRECIOUS!?!?
His name is Brom. We think. Not definite, that is another story. He did SO WELL. He was taken from his mother and in a box in the kitchen of the house. We visited and had some tea, then I put him in the bag I bought for him and took him to my parents' house. My little brother's dog played with him and he tried to nurse from her. She set him straight! Was so cute.
From there, he was taken to the Saskatoon airport. I had to get an Iced Capp from Tim Horton's and when I sat to drink it, I noticed the wee lad had upchucked a bit in the bag. Likely from nerves (what a day already for the poor thing!) and being carried around. That would make me sick too!!!
On the plane, I worried that he was dead. He was SO QUIET and good. A woman who works in the pet industry and was on a business trip gave him a free bag of puppy treats. Everyone gushed all over him and he just sat in his bag, blinking around at the people. We stopped in Edmonton (hi JUDE!!) and stayed on the plane. I let him onto my lap for a bit and a steward brought him some water. Then it was off to Vancouver. Once I got the shuttle to the car and got him settled, I brought him onto my lap. I actually started crying, I was so moved by how brave he was. I had not heard a peep from him yet! I was crying a bit and feeling foolish, kissing him all over his little face and telling him how brave he was, being taken from his Mum and flying/driving all over the place. He cuddled with me for a bit, I gave him more water and some of his food. I put him back in the bag on the floor on the passenger side and as I was backing out, he started in! Just a few whimpers. HOW CUTE! I felt bad for him, but man does it sound cute!
He slept most of the drive home and was sound asleep crossing the border in Washington State. Sillygirl, if you are reading this, I always think of you every time I am in that area. Vancouver, and driving South to the border.
So there we go. The kids were totally shocked. Stud videotaped them seeing him for the first time and it was CUTE! Clown's jaw dropped and he kept on repeating, "NO WAY!! NO WAY!!!"
He did pretty well, got me up about six times during the night. He went potty each time and drank some water some of the times. Finally at about 6:30, I laid with him on the couch, but by then he wanted to play. I played with him a bit and then took him down to Jock's room two minutes before his alarm went off. I set him by Jock's face and when he sniffed Jock's nose, he jumped and looked shocked! LOL I felt bad, but right when he saw the puppy, his face lit up and he grabbed him and they cuddled for a few minutes:)
Brain says he is quitting public school so that he can stay home with the puppy. I said no, he isn't. He begged and begged and I nipped that right in the bud. Princess carried him up to the school in her jacket, I didn't have the camera with me, but took of picture of he and Clown right when we got back from dropping Princess.
As if there was not enough excitement around here with the holidays!
Stud was awesome when I was gone. Getting the kids to school, cleaning, cooking, doing laundry, getting Princess to the salon to get her hair done and then on to her ballet recital, sending me and my family photos AND video of it, getting Jock to hockey a few times as well as his band concert, getting them to church, and somehow getting his full time job done as well! I am VERY impressed and VERY appreciative. He is getting some awesome Christmas gifts, that is FOR SURE! LOL
Ok, I need to go find more school work for Clown to do, he has finished what i set out for him. I also have to get ready to bake seven dozen cookies for a cookie exchange I have tomorrow night. I will publish comments from my other post soon. Still have not caught up on e-mail.
I loved seeing some of my family, but it sure is good to be back here with Stud and the kids!!!