Wednesday, April 25, 2007


Here is another t-shirt Princess enjoys wearing. I got it for her last year on sale and forgot about it. We recently found it in a box when we were getting ready for the city-wide yard sale happening this coming weekend.

Isn't it GREAT!?!? Her brothers don't even mind and got a kick out of it. They have some shirts about selling sisters and blaming sisters, etc. So they know she should be allowed some too. It is all in fun!

Sunday, April 22, 2007


Does everyone like the new shirt that Princess got?? I thought she needs it:) Now if only I could add a sparkly "S" onto the end of the word "Brother"!!!

Well, it has been a while since I posted anything. I have been busy enjoying my kids being back at home! Cryptic agonized but choose not to return to public school after the Easter break. It is ultimately his decision. Stud and I tried to encourage him, told him there were only a few months left, he made it this far, yadda yadda. Still, he wanted to be home. We are looking into an on-line school for him for High School.

Some friends have commented at how relaxed I seem and how much happier I seem to be. I had no idea that it was that obvious. I did not realise that I was THAT upset. I hate pretending to feel a certain way, though. I wanted my kids home, but was trying to please everyone. Stud really wanted them to try this, Cryptic had the idea originally, I had to pretend that I was supportive of it when in actuality I wanted to scream every time the kids went out the door and walked to school. I wanted to yell "COME BACK!!!" I had to smile and act all happy and excited for them, when I knew it was a waste of time, for the most part. Cryptic needed to figure that out for himself. There are certainly positive things about it, I don't mean to imply that I am totally against it. It just doesn't seem to work for us. Princess is begging to stay home with all of us, but we have explained since she is in Kindergarten and goes only a few hours in the morning, she can continue. Cryptic is older and we need to allow him more freedom and let go a little bit, so he can make more life decisions. She is still young enough that we need to decide pretty much everything for her.

Jock took the news that he was not returning to public school very well. He seems happy to be back home and complains only sometimes of missing lunch and some of the kids. He has improved significantly in his attitude and demeanor. He is sweet to the younger kids, helpful and less sassy toward his father and I. He is hugging me often, says, "I love you" out of the blue many times a day like he used to and is just impressing us. So we shall see how this goes. I have been telling him how proud I am of him, how happy it makes me and how I missed the old Jock. He flashes me his gorgeous smile. Now we need to work on Cryptic. *sigh*

It seems when Jock has his head straight, Cryptic goes nuts on us. Cryptic likes to joke about it. He says when Jock behaves properly, just to shake things up, he will cop an attitude, argue, sass, etc. Just because he feels SOMEONE should. We don't find it funny. When Jock does, it, Cryptic shakes his head, grumbles, antagonises Jock and makes it worse, etc. Now when Jock is really trying, Cryptic is a butt-head! He stayed up until four this morning when he was told to go to bed at midnight. Kept Clown awake watching Star Wars movies, so Clown got hardly any sleep and slept funny on the couch here in the Rec Room. I am worried about his neck issues. Cryptic is having various consequences.

He takes it well. He knows he deserves it and just calmly says yes when I tell him, equally as calm in my tone, what all is going to happen. Jock was laying on the couch when I was talking to Cryptic about all that he would need to do to make up for his choice. Jock often complains that we are harder on him than we are on Cryptic and that he can do things wrong and doesn't have any consequences. I realised in that moment that Cryptic DOES get as many consequences. It is just that he accepts them without argument, knows it is realistic and he expects it all. Jock lips off, gets more chores added to his already large list, uses choice words so he gets money docked from his allowance, is LOUD, so we get louder to be heard above him, etc. This draws more attention and is more easily remembered, thus causing it to SEEM as if it happens more often. I brought this to Jock's attention once Cryptic was gone and he just grunted, but I let it sink in. I am sure if he thinks about it, he will know it is true. He would never admit that to me, but still. I made a great observation!

So I am thrilled to have my kids back home. Can't wait until Princess can be with us as well. Jock will attend Clown's weekly art classes with him, they are both very excited about that! He and Cryptic went last week to try it out. Cryptic doesn't care as much, but Jock LOVED it as much as Clown does.

I will fill everyone in on more news soon, but must get to bed. I was very good all last week about getting to Curves, walking, etc and want to continue. Yesterday and today were the first time that I did not do anything really physical since last Sunday when all six of us took Brom up to the school grounds and played catch, freeze tag, soccer, etc. We had a blast and I was active every day since. So I want to keep up with that, as well as start and eat better like I was back in January.

I will close with a few photos from last Sunday up at the school.

Hope everyone is doing well!

Saturday, April 14, 2007

Forgot something

Hi Everyone! Forgot to share something with you all that happened when we were in Alberta a few weeks ago.

As some of you know, I was born in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan in 1969. When I was two and a half, we moved to a town near Edmonton, called St. Albert. When I was seven we moved back to Saskatchewan. I lived on 80 acres west of Saskatoon until I left for University in Regina in 1988. The year we left St. Albert (1976), it became a city.

I had not been back to the neighbourhood that I lived in for 31 years!!! The few times I have been near there, there was never time to go look at the house or school or anything.

When my parents came to see Jock play hockey a few weeks back, they took us out there!!! All these years I had envisioned the school I went to and the hill I used to toboggan and crazy carpet down. I pictured the fence near the school and the sidewalk next to our house that led back to the alley behind all the houses. I was desperate to go back and see if it was just like I still pictured in my mind all these years later.

IT WAS!?!? I COULD NOT believe it! The house is a different colour, but I picked it out from all the other houses. I remember driving away from there and being so sad, but excited to go to this mysterious place called Saskatchewan, where they told me I had been born. The only thing that changed in that time, besides the house colour, were the trees! They are now everywhere and HUGE! When we lived there of course they had all just been very small and young. It looks very nice.

We drove to the school and I was certain that the hill had been big and amazing only in my seven-year-old mind. Dad had barely stopped the van, when I pushed past the kids and ran to the side of the school that the hill is on. SURE ENOUGH! It is a HUGE hill and goes way down into a field and then there are trees at the other end of the field. I remember it seemed like I would slide WAY down and it was a long walk back up. Well, NO WONDER! I even remember one time this boy trying to take my crazy carpet from me and being very annoyed, but not knowing what to do. I was absolutely shocked that everything looked just the same so many years later. I was certain that my child's mind had remembered it in a different way than it actually is. It was just fascinating and thrilling to me that it is JUST like I imagined it and recalled all these years. Every time I would think about it, that is what I pictured! I wish I could have gone IN the school. I remembered the gym being down some stairs and to the left when you walked in the main doors. Sure enough, it was clear that the gym was down beside the hill and built into the hill. So pretty clear that you had to go DOWN to get into it once you entered the school.

It was so amazing to show to Stud and the kids. There were only two problems that make me sad...

1) Jock was not with us. He was at the Water Park in West Ed Mall with his team. Of all four of the kids, so far, he is the one most interested in Stud and I's past and our childhoods. He would have gotten something out of it. In fact when we told him later, he was pretty sad that he missed it. That was our only chance to go, though. Cryptic is not at all interested in that type of thing and is quite bored by the whole deal. I remember when I was a kid, I LOVED for my Dad to drive us all through the fields where he grew up and point out where he played with his cousins and which Uncle owned which quarter sections etc. I LOVED IT! I would try to picture my Dad as a little boy, playing in the dirt on the windblown prairie. Jock must be like me:) AND HE is the one who missed it all:( Clown and Princess were quite excited, though. They ran over and exclaimed about the hill and were jealous that I got to play on something so awesome:)

2) We forgot our camera in our van at the hotel the hockey team and my parents were staying in. THERE ARE NO PHOTOS OF MY CHILDREN ON THE HILL THAT I PLAYED ON!?!?!? *sigh* Ok, I am fine. I can go back one day, but what I would not give to have a photo of my kids standing on that hill, or standing in front of the house I lived in.

So there you go, just wanted to share. I don't know if the time on here will be when I started this post, or now, later on Saturday night, when I came back to it. All of us cleaned and organised today. We have a yard sale coming up in two weekends and need to get rid of all kinds of stuff. We spent the day doing that and then Stud and I went out to see "The Reaping". We just got back. It was certainly interesting. Kind of predictable, but I don't want to say anything to ruin it for anyone.

Off to bed. Church tomorrow and then we will try and go up to the Tulip Fields! Check here to see what I am talking about. We have not gone in five years! Clown was a wee toddler and fell in a puddle and Stud freaked out and vowed we would not go back. I have convinced him that the kids are at an age where they now handle it better:)

I will leave everyone with a photo of my baby sleeping on the couch the other afternoon...*sigh*. Is he the CUTEST!?!?!?!

Tuesday, April 10, 2007

Just stuff

We had a weekend of freebies. Was kind of cool!

Saturday morning as Stud and I went to the last soccer game that Princess would play in until fall (if she plays then as well), we stopped by Starbucks for our morning coffee before the game.

When we drove up, there was hardly any line. I think there were two vehicles ahead of us. The vehicle in front of us took a ridiculously long time acquiring their purchases. By there, there were a lot of people behind us. When we reached the drive thru window, Stud just said something about, "You sure are busy!" and smiled.

So when she handed us our drinks, she said, "This is on us, guys."

We were stunned. It had not been that big of a deal. Still, who says no to something free?? What a great start to the day.

Easter night, we went out to eat. Some years I cook a big Easter meal, but since we don't live near family, it is a lot of work and no one really cares. So we started eating at the Olive Garden after church Easter morning. Just a new tradition we started. Stud did not want to go there with all his make up on and his hair and beard all stiff and with all the gunk from being Jesus. Princess was most unhappy and he promised her we would go for the evening meal instead.

We got there and were seated right away. It was clear that our server was very new and we were patient when it took him five minutes to take a simple order. Princess and Clown always share my meal, Jock wanted spaghetti and Stud just wanted the soup that came with the bread. Some milkshakes, hot chocolates and a pop for me. Simple, right??

Apparently not!

GOOD GRAVY as Stud says. Seriously, this guy repeated it back to us I am not sure how many times. He asked Stud to wait a few times, as he wrote and wrote and checked things off. I was a server years ago. I know how it is. But the place was pretty slow, it is not like they were "Slammed" as we used to call it. It was such a simple order.

Fine, we get it ordered and sit back. Immediately Jock starts in with his attitude. Whining about something, who can remember what. After about eight minutes, the guy brings a few of the drinks and says the others are coming. Fine. By the time we had been sitting there for twenty minutes, our order comes out!?!? Just a few minutes after Jock and Stud finally got their milkshakes and Jock's was wrong anyway. The guy had repeated to us a few times, just to make sure and he STILL did it wrong. And yes, it was him. Not who made it.

We still had NO BREAD, no plates, no alfredo sauce for the bread, NOTHING. So as the person is bringing out the food for us, wondering if she is at the right table, we tell her we still have no bread and no plates for the bread once we do get it. So she goes over to our server, who was waiting on some other people and asks him what she should do with the food, why don't we have our bread yet?? He waves her away and she leaves.

About five minutes later, he brings out some bread. He goes to leave and I say that we would like some plates. He put his hands together and looked very impatient and asked me what for. I said, "For our bread. And did you forget our sauce??"

Again, he gives me attitude. He asks what kind of sauce and I felt like smacking him and telling him, "The same kind that I repeated to you FOUR time when we placed our order!!!!!!!!"""" GGGGGGRRRRRRRRRRRR!!!!!!!!

So he finally brings out the sauce exactly when they bring the meal!??! *SIGH* THANK GOODNESS the manager was going around asking how things were. She asked us and I spoke for us. I said I hated to complain, but it was clear he is new. She said relatively, what is the problem. Told her simple things seem to fluster him and explained about the bread, etc. She was SO COOL! She was horrified that we had no bread or plates and no sauce for the bread, etc. She got things fixed right away and came out a bit later and told us the meal was on them, not to worry. I felt bad and said no no, that was fine. She insisted. It was kind of funny, because I had just been telling the kids stories about my days as a server and how stressful it can be, and on and on. How my manager had to deal with rude patrons and how some people go around and complain about anything just to get a free meal and how we learned to peg them as soon as they walked in, etc.

So we got two free things in one weekend!

Also, we heard from our good friend who helped put together the Easter Production. He said that people are still raving about it. He has heard things such as, "Best in Twenty Years" and "I was weeping through the entire thing". I am not sure of the number yet, but many people accepted Christ this weekend. The kids are bursting with pride that their Dad was Jesus in a production that had such an impact on people. I am also very proud!

I will close on this note. I forgot to mention a hilarious (yet accurate) observation that Clown made while we were at the water park in West Ed.

I was trying to climb up the many staircases to one of the slides to go down it with he and Cryptic and Princess. Jock and Stud were off on their own at this time.

I am TERRIFIED of heights. As in, totally...I dunno. I don't have many fears. Am fine with bugs, bats, snakes, mice, spiders etc. Heights never bothered me until I was about 19 and spent a day at Niagra Falls. It didn't even really bother me that much at the time, but I noticed that since then, I am petrified.

I LOVE water slides and was dying to go on this one. I was trying to think about just getting to the top and then not looking anywhere but on the slide and then just letting go and having a blast. The kids were so excited. If you look in the photo here , you can see the light tan slide is about the tallest. We were attempting to walk up the stairs to it.

I suddenly realised about halfway up, that I could not do it. It did not help at all that I was not in the greatest mind set since the last time I was at a waterpark/wave pool, was my brother's last day alive. I did not know at the time that my parents had him at the ER and that he would die that very night, while I lay at my brother's house trying to sleep and knowing that something was very wrong, but not knowing what it was. We had enjoyed an incredible day that day and I remember even wishing my brother was with us and thinking how much he would love to be in that water. I had not been to a water park since and it was quite emotional for me. I hid it well, though. I am sure Stud had no clue and won't until he reads this.

Anyway, add that to my fear of heights and I was not in a good place.

I stopped and Cryptic and Princess continued up the stairs and were soon out of site. Clown waited for me and I told him to keep going, I was going down and would wait for them at the bottom. He insisted I continue. I told him I could not, I am sorry, quickly, go catch up with his brother and sister and I will find Daddy and Jock and meet him soon. He begged me and I was so torn. I wanted to do with him but I was honestly terrified.

He looked me in the eye and said, "MUM! COME ON!! This is RIDICULOUS! You know this is an IRRATIONAL FEAR!!"

LOL That cheered me up! It was so funny. I did not even know he knew that word! LOL I know he is right too. That made it worse. He kept saying to just watch his feet and not look out into the park, just look at his feet as he walked in front of me. I tried a few more steps and just couldn't. By then, he had to come down with me, we had wasted too much time. I found Stud and Jock and they took him and all was well. I still feel so bad, though. I did end up doing a few of the lower down ones and had a great time, but man! I hate fears!

Ok, better get to bed. Went to my Home School Support Group meeting tonight and then went shopping at Target. A friend is due with her first child soon and I needed to get him some more goodies:) I love to shop for babies!

Good night!!!

Sunday, April 08, 2007

Happy Easter!

Well, we have had a nice day thus far. I got up at 5 with Stud and hid the baskets and eggs. He had to leave to go to church and get dolled up to play Jesus in the annual Production.

The kids slept until about 8, and we found baskets, eggs and goodies. The Easter Bunny always makes maps and makes it fun to hunt for the main basket full of toys and candy. Last night I was SO TIRED, I just wanted to put the baskets at their spots at the table. Jock was begging me to draw maps!!! A few more years and we can let the younger two in on the "secret" of Santa and the EB, etc. It is SO MUCH harder when they still believe, but sure is worth it. Jock and Cryptic found better things to do yesterday and had no interest in dying eggs or decorating cookies. This was the first year in their lives that had happened. So I was hoping that meant that I could get away with no maps this year. I had planned to draw up elaborate and fun ones a few days ago, because I know how tired I always am the night before and I need to wait until everyone is in bed before I can get all the goodies ready. Not surprisingly, I never did find the time to be to be well prepared.

So, I threw together some lame maps and the kids found everything within a few minutes. They seemed pleased, however. Jock was whispering to me about how cool it must have been growing up on 80 acres and asked if Grandad drove the tractor around to hide the eggs in the pastures:) The kids were commenting on how I had told them how often I hunted for Easter stuff with snow all around. They find that fascinating!

The boys kicked up a stink about what to wear. I bought Clown a darling outfit the other day, but he asked me if I have the receipt because he does not want me wasting my money and I need to return it because there is NO WAY he will EVER wear it:( *sniff* So I basically let them put together their own outfits and Clown was in tears that I would not let him wear a toque to church. He is mortified with how I cut his hair and is in denial that it had grown out. Still feels the need to hide it and is convinced that everyone is concerned with his hair! DRAMA! So far, in my parenting experience, boys are much more dramatic than girls. We shall see if things continue this way or if Princess joins her brothers in their...moodiness.

Stud and I need to nap this afternoon. He did AWESOME as Jesus. Was very convincing. We heard comments such as "Phenomenal" and one woman came up to me and said, "Your husband's eyes just GLOWED. It was INCREDIBLE!" We had many unbelievers there today, so are hopeful that we got through to some of them:)

The older boys were holding back laughter. Hard to take seriously when you know it is really your Dad in that get up! I could tell they were proud as well, however. As I type this, he is showering as much of the gunk off and shaving off that horrid beard!

Enjoy these few photos and I will attempt to catch up on your blogs this next week:)

Have a wonderful weekend!

Saturday, April 07, 2007

Back from the Great White North!

And was it WHITE! Snowed often while we were there, which was just beautiful of course:)

We left on Monday, March 26th and arrived home around supper time on Wednesday, April 4th. Jock's team did very well, won three out of four games. He scored a goal during the first game when my parents were there, of course that was most exciting.

It was SO entertaining to watch my mother watching her grandson. I thought *I* was protective. I guess you need to toughen up, always seeing your son knocked onto the ice and smashed into the boards. Comes with the territory. I get quite frantic when he is laying on the ice for a long time and the game is stopped, but other than that, I have come to expect it of course. It was clear that my Mum has not seen a loved one play hockey in many years! My older brothers had all quit by the time they were Jock's age and that was over 30 years ago of course. I don't think they had reached the level of checking yet and it was not as physical as Jock's level.

Some boy checked Jock and Granny was convinced it was an accident. When we told her it was indeed on purpose, she was determined that we seek the boy out later and have him tell Jock that he is sorry! LOL THEN! I almost fell off the bleachers from laughing! A boy checked Jock into the boards right in front of us. Mum almost jumped out of her seat and yelled "HEY!!!!!!!!!!!" very loudly. Jock told us later that he heard her from out on the ice.

The kids spent the night in the hotel with my parents and Jock was also able to go on various "team building" escapades with his team-mates, so that was nice. We had a great visit with the friends we were staying with. They are incredible hosts and showed our kids an awesome time, not to mention feeding us lovely tid bits such as puffed wheat cake, perogies, butter tarts, ice cream and all manner of treats!

One wonderful surprise came on Thursday night. Stud, Jock and I had spent the afternoon and evening with the team and had gone out to dinner with them. Cryptic, Clown and Princess had stayed with our friends and had a picnic at the river, and a nice afternoon and evening together.

We got back from the restaurant to watch Survivor with everyone. When we walked in, a familiar person was sitting on the couch! NTFrog, who comments on here often, had popped down from the Northwest Territories for a visit. She and I have been great buds since grade two, when we were seven years old. She married a Canadian and stayed in the country. We try to get together with the husbands and kids every summer, but it has not worked out the past few summers. It has been at least two years since I have seen her and I was so tickled! What a wonderful surprise!!! She and our hostess had planned this a few weeks prior! I met our hostess (R) when we were about eight or nine at Bible camp up in Northern Saskatchewan. I always told them about each other and then when we were all about 12 or so, I took NTFrog to the camp I had raved about and the two of them clicked and we have all stayed in touch! Was a great reunion:) We went shopping on Saturday, ate at the Olive Garden and had an awesome time! I would like to post a photo of the three of us on here but I have not asked R yet and NTFrog requested that I not do so. So I will respect that:) I may convince her yet:)

We spent a day here and also saw "Meet the Robinsons" at the Theatre in the Mall. It was pretty cute and the kids had a good time, which is what the goal was of course. If you look at this you can see how amazing this mall is:) I have been there three of four times (I got married and left my country before I had much Independence and could explore and do things on my own) and have still not seen half of it, I am sure.

Maybe Stud will let me post a photo of him as Jesus. He has to be at church by 5 tomorrow morning, they need to spend at least two hours trying to cover up all his tattoos with make-up before they crucify him. We don't think Jesus had tats!

I think we are ready to dye Easter Eggs now.

Have a great Easter everyone. Will try to make it around to all of your blogs soon!