Thursday, May 24, 2012

Lady Kenmore

Well the "Lady" is going.  She's had sparks come out her burners and blown fuses.  The wiring is looking a little brittle and when I called to find out about replacement parts, the girl on the other line said, "oh... your stove is from 1978, maybe you should replace the whole thing".  How sweet is she?  Just the confirmation I needed.  So that has thrown us into a bunch of shopping for a new one. There are surprisingly too many choices when you actually have to make one.  Yay for the BBQ this week!  But we can still bake and I'm trying these tonight.

I'm going with CONVECTION, I hear it's amazing!  And self clean, oh thank you Lord! I voted against the glass top because of all the canning I do, and I went with... white.  I love the look of the stainless steel and black, but I don't want to have to worry about finger prints! And I hear that white is coming back in, and the newest ones they're making are white with stainless steel accents.  So maybe I'll be with the times for once, because I'm so about that.

Makes me think of what other things I'm holding on to that I don't really need anymore.  And not just stuff, although there's some of that too,  but old habits or negative emotions, or things that drag me down and spark without warning.  My girls finished our last study before summer, and we've been talking about listening to the "God whispers" in your life.  I'm hoping to be more aware of listening and taking time to listen and be quiet.

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Missing Freddie Already

We had an extra friend for the weekend.  He was pretty spoiled, spent time in the flower beds, watched a movie, hung out with Ditto (from a distance), ate fresh grass, and was generally loved to bits.  Erin is in withdrawl already.

Saturday, May 19, 2012

Sometimes I feel so two-faced.  So caught between two realities.  Mine and the one I have seen and continue to imagine that goes on in countless lives across the globe.  I want new bathroom fixtures, and living room flooring, to upgrade and get caught up in the home improvement and decor obsession our society has, to make things look more beautiful.  But on the other side of my mind, my other face, I ache at seeing homeless children starving, kids with no shoes begging for a chance to go to school, to have a family.  I want to provide all the best opportunities for my children, that they are well-educated and well-rounded, well-read, involved in sports and music and good Christian service opportunities.  And yet on the other side of the world, or maybe on the other side of my city, there is a child who would pray for one opportunity, or just supper.  They have an unimaginable world, a painful daily existence.

How can I even care for the things I have to deal with every day in this world?  Or be wanting of more? ... When  I remember holding a dying child, a mother's heart breaking because of something so simple as clean water.  My mind, my heart, my day gets caught up in my tasks and my family's needs, and their pain doesn't negate the need for what I have to do here, or the joy I can find in planting annuals and making my yard a little more lovely.  But I feel two-faced, torn between trying to creating a middle place for these 2 things to exist.  Does it matter that I think of them and care?  Or say a prayer?  Should I care less for what is in front of me because we are so full and they are not?  I still sit in my comfortable living room and still complain, about getting groceries that I can afford.  Why was I chosen to be born here, to win the life lottery?

And yet meeting some in that poverty, they have something we don't.  Yes they are poor, but they have more community, more faith, more need to rely on a God that is so much bigger than they are.  And I can carry on in my self sufficient bubble if I choose to, barely needing to beg for something from God.  Except HIS MERCY, to save me from myself.  HIS GRACE, the need to be completely loved and fulfilled by the joy and peace I can only get from being in HIS PRESENCE.

I can't get that part of Africa out me.  Once you've been somewhere, felt something, it becomes a part of who you are.  But sometimes it feels so caught in between. So big, that how can one person make a difference?  But I see it and read stories of people who are, and want to be one of those people. 

Thursday, May 17, 2012

Yay for the Long Weekend.

Some school stuff is winding down a bit!  Just in time to enjoy a long weekend!   I was so totally amazed with Jacob's latest woodworking project he brought home!  The fam had to try it out right away.  He initially tried to make chess pieces, but I can't even imagine how hard that would be.  He finished a king, and then it turned to checkers!  Sweet!

There's been a lot of this going on lately, on our backyard "beach".  Some serious studying has just come to an end with E writing her Bio. AP exam.  I keep getting asked questions like, what is the life cycle of a "sporophyte"?, and what does luteneizing hormone do? molecular genetics, stoichiometry, phospholipid layers, pedigrees, diploidy.. words that I used to know...  things I can't remember anymore... concepts that were in my head, but no longer can be retrieved.  I guess it's not stuff I have to use everyday.  I'll accept that my brain is deteriorating.

Enjoy your weekend!

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Sewing up a Storm

Erin's been busy in her sewing class this semester.  I keep meaning to get photos of all the things she's done, and finally did.  The above one she actually made last spring and fits awesome, but makes her look totally grown up.  I LOVE this print!!  Lined the inside of my purse with some leftovers.

This one she did at home doing a remake of an old 3/4 length dress of mine with sleeves.

 A cute Cynthia Rowley pattern that was made with the top and bottom in different fabrics!
 Looks really cute with tights underneath.

Great t-shirt dress made from 3 thrift stores shirts sewn together.  
A great Pinterest idea for under $7

The brother had to get in on the action.  Can you just feel the love?
She's busy making some summery tops, can't wait to see them!
Makes me inspired to maybe do some sewing!

Monday, May 14, 2012

Mom's Day

I love the 2 that have made me a Mom.  It's the BEST job in the world!!!  We had a good day together yesterday.  I pretty much forced them to go to do a photo shoot in honor of the day. We had a family photo done with the whole Op't Land side at Christmas, but only got 1 of our immediate family, and Erin had puked about 30 seconds before it.
 We started with a  fair bit of groaning initially, but eventually it turned into some good fun. 


It deteriorated rather quickly into some of this though...

 And some other brilliant pose ideas, (don't mind the cleavage)
 The kids wanted to get the "Father's Day photos" out of the way too while we were at it. 
 These 2 (Erin and Kevin) are NOT very cuddly!
The quote of the day, "She didn't want to hold my hand when she was 3, I don't think she does now either"
So true!!  She's an independent one!

 I totally have an assistant for you though Tara... he set up some "parent poses" and then said, nearly everytime, "OK, now kiss" and snapped the shot!  It was some pretty harsh, hot lighting at 1 in the afternoon!  Bibble needs to fix these, but he's not home.

 Erin's shot of Jacob, "contemplating life" and trying to get his amazingly LONG eyelashes!

Jacob explaining the Titanic pose he'd like to shoot, it's NOT going on the blog!

To all the Moms, and those praying to be Moms, those without Moms, and the many many orphans who need a Mom (love this week's read after Time magazine's shocking cover), to the single Moms who do so much, and all the women who make this world a better place because they love like a Mom.

Monday, May 7, 2012

the Boy Man

He's 14 today!  The day he was born I was standing in line at the grocery store.  The girl working the cash asked how I was today, and I said, "I think I am in labor".  I've never seen anyone scan items so fast in my life! Walmart cashiers should take note!! My mother scurried us home, having been waiting for 10 days for this boy to arrive.  Sort of seems his personality, "it's pretty cozy in here, I think I'll just stay for awhile longer".  I told KD to come home from work, but not to rush.  I wasn't going in til I had to, and didn't want the option of any drugs.  By 6:30 we were waiting at the train crossing near the hospital for an endless line of cars.  I walked into L&D and they quickly assessed I looked not so bad, though the nurses were almost making bets on the 10 pounder in there, so didn't rush too quickly.  I got settled and checked to be 8cm.  Well then it all happened fast and furious and within the half hour, the nurse was yelling in the hall for a Dr. to come from anywhere.  Let's just say he wasn't amused, and she was the one to deliver Jacob at 7:54 pm,  9 pounds 8.5 ounces of all boy! 

You make us smile every day!

Sunday, May 6, 2012

I listed our outside playground on K town's classifieds and had 2 phone calls within the evening.   We once sold a truck in several hours.  By last night it was taken all apart and gone this morning.  I'm kind of sad, or maybe just a bit nostalgic.  Kevin built it for the kids when we moved in, and there have been so many hours and memories stored up there.  Tea parties on top, and water slides, water balloon fights and forts, and endless sandbox creations.  Last year I asked the kids if they were done playing there, and Jacob wasn't quite.  It's nice to have around for other kids and nephews who come visit.  But in my spring mode of purging and makin' an few extra bucks, off it went.  He's grown up and changed so much in the last months, I knew he was done.  He's 14!!  I can't believe somehow I blinked and I'm middle aged and feeling like it!  Next time I blink, where will I be?

I have this slide show that runs in my mind sometimes.  Memories that in that moment I have thought of freezing them in time, to re-remember, especially on a lazy, sunlit evening.  They play in my head recreating the scene, but mostly the feelings I felt in them.  They are all good moments, like strumming guitar on the back porch of our farm house watching E pulling baby Jacob in a wagon down the long drive, the barn back lit with the setting sun.  The laughter and joy in the special moment of taking our last big family photo together at Duck Lake.  E making that 2'3" jump clean round on horse back, KD smiling at me from down the end of the aisle.  Boys filling up the van and laughing in the back, just like last night. Dance party when I turned 40.  Sitting on the porch at Sundre watching the sun go down and feeling God so thick and healing in that summer.  The super full moon shining on a fully blooming cherry tree!!  Him holding my hand.

Friday, May 4, 2012


Love this photo (and apparently it's NOT staged, how cool is that?)...  it's a team we won't soon forget.  A great, amazing group of young women, and awesome parents to go along with them.  Erin had such a privilege to play up with these girls this year.  They played awesome and ended up 6th at Provincials, taking a set off the #3 ranked BCO Elite, and almost beating them in the cross over.  Their downfall was only 1 sub, while the other team had 7 more amazing players ready to give extra steam when our girls tired out.  It'll be amazing to see some of them play next year, as all of them have been signed to college or university teams (except the 2 grade 11s).

Jacob's team also played last weekend and had a totally fun and bonding time.  Really cute coach too!
They ended up 12th of 24 teams, so pretty good considering a late start to the season.  We love hanging out with them.  The boys absolutely make us laugh!  Boston Pizza with 18 boys, fun times!

Slowing Down...

Some months it seems the TO DO list never gets any shorter, it just turns from one season's activities and chores to the next.  Things are spinning fast and furious, and looking ahead to the calendar, even into July it makes my heart pitter patter out of whack, looking for some relief somewhere.

Today I have to just leave it all behind and enjoy the day.  It is the first day in awhile I could do that.

I took my camera on my morning walk, makes me sound like I do it every morning, poor Ditto will attest to NOT.  I love living where we do, so close to being  able to see a bit of nature right out the front door.

apple trees starting to bloom

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

I Can't Believe My Baby is turning 14...

... on Monday!!

Me:  "So Jacob, do you want a theme and some awesome decorations and stuff?"
Jacob:  "I am turning 14, we are just going to chill"
Jacob:  "And I want to buy a cake"
Me:  "So, no choo choo train cake?"
Jacob: eye roll
Me: "So what do you want for your birthday... from your parents?"
Jacob: "You guys are just such good parents"... this in a TOTALLY serious tone!!
Me:  "So our love is enough then?"
Jacob: "Well maybe your love and $20"

Man I love that kid!!

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Happy May Day

With my husband's Swedish heritage, I've gotten to know that May Day even exists.  I hope we can do this sometime today:

maybe, put some braids into our long blonde hair, and throw flowers petals around.