Tuesday, December 22, 2009

a night owl and the theory of time

i've realized why i love being awake at night after everyone else has gone to bed. it's probably the same reason why some people love mornings ...
quietness, solitude, and freedom.
late at night, when patrick leaves for work (my equivalent of people going to bed, i guess!), i lock the door behind him and start setting up. lately i've been setting up the livingroom as a giant craftsroom - breaking out the christmas supplies, tape, and wrapping paper. i put on a christmas movie, or maybe an episode of "how clean is your house" or "supernanny" - anything really - and listen to the show while i putter away at making things.
before christmas, it was schoolwork that kept me busy (although i usually just turned on the radio while i worked on that!). sometimes it's housework. whatever it is, it's nice to work at my own pace as long as i want, without anything else demanding my time. now that i'm out of school and working evenings, i don't have to worry about waking up at a certain time. i can sleep in if i happen to stay up too late. i can nap. i can have a bath in the middle of the day.
at night, it's like space and time spread outward instead of tunneling forward. time stretches, expands, and grows quiet.
owls are wise ... nighttime is a good time to be awake.

Sunday, December 20, 2009

typewrecks: pique

i am a blog addict. i love to prowl from blog to blog to blog, reading, looking at pictures, laughing, crying, bookmarking recipes ...
however, my blog-reading is continually interrupted by the unpleasant presence of typos, bad spelling, and poor grammar.
spellcheck has done a lot to alleviate the pandemic of bad spelling. however, homonyms are toxic for spellcheck.
today's typewrecker is guilty of an all-too-common wreck:
"I decided to post a few pictures to peek your interest."
are you planning on peering through my computer screen to take a look at my face when i see your pictures, typewrecker?
peek - a quick or furtive look or glance; peep
peak - the pointed top of anything. - or - the highest or most important point or level.
pique - to affect with sharp irritation and resentment - or - to excite (interest, curiosity, etc.)

Thursday, December 10, 2009

giving myself slack

ever since i lost the baby, i've had waves of craziness. i know this is probably mostly hormone induced, but sometimes the smallest things seem like the BIGGEST ISSUES - and vice versa. i get it - i understand that my perspective is awry just now - and i know i need to cut myself some slack. but listening to your reasonable inner voice is pretty hard when you're swamped with stormy hormones and legitimate difficulties.
so this note is my reminder to myself to cut myself some slack.

dear janelle:
sometimes you're going to react in weird ways to things and your friends will be astonished. sometimes the 'you' that shows up on the outside will not be a good translation of the 'you' you were intending on the inside. sometimes you'll miss opportunities you wanted to take, and sometimes you'll make choices you'll regret and sometimes you'll just be lame. it's okay. life is hard and no one is perfect and it's even okay if you don't try to be perfect.
(for now. later, i'm going to kick your butt and motivate you into trying to be the best person you can be. these days, though, i just want you to know that surviving is enough).
there's lots of time to work on improvement. that can come later. today is just about putting one hour after another and making it to the end of the day.
put your unreasonable expectations on the back shelf. who you are is okay. the world will keep spinning, just as it is.
with love and mercifully low expectations,
your self.

now get back to class ...

Monday, December 7, 2009

Before You Call, I Will Answer

Be near me, Lord Jesus, I ask You to stay
Close by me forever, and love me, I pray
Bless all the dear children in Thy tender care,
And take us to Heaven to live with Thee there.
Away in a Manger

Listen to Me, O house of Jacob,
And all the remnant of the house of Israel,
You who have been borne by Me from birth
And have been carried from the womb;
Even to your old age I will be the same,
And even to your graying years I will bear you!
I have done it, and I will carry you;
And I will bear you and I will deliver you.
Isaiah 46

Thursday, December 3, 2009

where's the salt?!?!

*with apologies to robb, for still being the same

it's 1:33 am. i can't sleep. the delectable smell of fresh, hot, buttery popcorn is wafting through my apartment and torturing me.
one of my neighbours apparently has a thing for aromatic&salty midnight snacks. if it keeps up, i'll find myself knocking on their door in my pjs with eyes as big as saucers (going round and round), holding out a bowl.
please sir, may i have a little more?
this is the third night in a row. i'm hoping they only bought a box of three packages, otherwise, i'm in for another agonizing night tomorrow.
i'll be lying in bed, trying (somewhat successfully) to get comfortable and (less successfully) to forget about the mound of assignments weighing me down. then, as the first shades of sleep begin to close in on me ... the golden aroma will hover on the air. at first, it will just be a hint of thought of popcorn. what's that? sleep will ask, and fly out the door. you know i brook no rivals, she'll shrug, and disappear.
i'll bury my head under the pillows, and try to smell the laundry soap, the scent of patrick's aftershave on the pillowcase ...
but the hot buttery goodness will not be so easily deterred.
i'll count sheep. i'll try to name a place starting with every letter of the alphabet. i'll close my eyes and think of rose gardens in the sunshine. i'll try to recite all the verses i've got memorized. but it will fail! it will fail!
i'll forget everything and find myself sitting upright, smiling dreamily, breathing in the tantalizing scent of popcorn.
desperate, i'll launch myself out of bed and rummage through the cupboard. but my rational self from daylight hours has forseen this midnight scrounging, and there is nothing aromatic or salty to be found. herbal tea, stray packages of jello, and pancake mix will stare blandly back at me.
i'll turn to the fridge. yogurt, smug in its saltless state, will sit benignly on the shelf. pickles will whisper, we're good enough. but they won't be. toast will suggest, try me with butter. but it's all hollow, compared with the poppylicious butteriffic finger-licking saltiness of popcorn.
i'll drift mournfully to my blog, to console myself with the slight comfort of shared misery. then i'll go back to bed, and lie mournfully awake, until the fragrance of popcorn settles for the night.

Thursday, November 26, 2009

gingerbread toffee

now that assignments are piling up and i have lots of things due, i'm wasting much more time on the internet. avoidance is the best type of procrastination. it transforms an occasional procrastinator into an olympic gold medalist procrastinator.
one of the things i like to do is prowl through blogs. people write the craziest things. i learned how to fold a tshirt in 2 seconds (honestly, it's the coolest trick) and the fastest way to peel a boiled egg.
eventually i came across a sweet blogger from sweden who loves to cook and bake - acatinthekitchen.com - and she posts recipes as well as stories about making the food, serving it to friends, etc. i spent far too long reading through her posts, and suddenly came upon a recipe that seemed so simple and delicious i had to try it.
gingerbread toffee, ladies and gentlemen, after one batch, has become my new christmas tradition.
:) yum!
and now i have a whole new way to procrastinate ... slurp!

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

you know i love christmas ... i always will ...

listening to "christmas is all around" from Love Actually - which i actually love.
i love this time of year.
i used to hate it. before i met patrick, christmas was the suckiest time of year. i used to sprawl in the livingroom wishing for good christmases to come - the house was dark, the christmas lights were soft and glowy, snow fell thick and heavy, and mysterious packages collected under the tree. in spite of all this christmas loveliness, well, ... "all i really wanted was" ... hahah, actually jeff robichaud, usually. i wanted him to stop asking me what he should buy his girlfriend for christmas, and buy me something instead. (okay, he usually did buy me something too - he was a great friend, and i shouldn't've complained).
my sisters had boyfriends and got to go out, wear pretty clothes, and hang up their bouquets of roses to dry next to the tree. i got to babysit on new years eve and knew no one would ever kiss me at the stroke of midnight. i was the ugliest of ducklings.
i think christmases cemented my desire to be a teacher. i knew no one would ever love me and want to make twinkly christmas magic together - so at least, if i was a teacher i could take trips away at christmas time. i could travel and hole up in a hotel somewhere and read books and eat cheesies and swim, even, on december 25th!
and then i met patrick.
he transformed christmas. our first kiss - our first i love you - our engagement - all happened in one magical christmas vacation (i've still never been kissed at the stroke of midnight on new year's eve, but that's another story about too much juice and unfortunate bladder control). now, when christmas music starts to play, i think about my train ride to ontario. i think about the heart-thumping dazzliness of meeting patrick at the station. the dizzying ride on the subway. the pancakes we made for supper, then our walk in the snow when we both wanted to hold hands but didn't. the delicious smell of patrick's winter jacket. the incredible certainty that this was my one true love (and incidentally, no, i would not have to suffer through interminable christmases enviously watching my sisters be loved).
snuggling our feet under the table (sorry uncle bert ... hehe) - holding hands on the train - writing mushy notes to each other when we should've been wrapping presents - going for walks in the sweet kapuskasing cold, just to be alone and in love - not caring what we were doing, as long as it was together. it was a fabulous christmas, and now i love christmas, love remembering how we met and fell in love. i know that christmas is the time when we remember God's love for us, and His gift to us - Jesus. now that i have patrick's arms around me and his lips on my cheek, i've got my mind of off myself and my own stagnant self-pity. christmas is a light in the dark, warmth in the cold, and generosity in the face of want. it's the perfect reminder that God loves us outrageously.
as tiny tim says ... God bless us, every one!

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

24 weeks

our baby bean would have been 24 weeks old today.
i miss him so much.

Sunday, November 8, 2009

patrick sleeping

the room is light and cool
and you
have dived face-first into sleep
the blankets swish around you
the pillows have capsized against the headboard
your right arm splays backward
in a desperate stroke toward oblivion.
swim toward starlight.
darkness will kiss your eyelids awake
and i
will kayak the blankets about me
and drift toward dawn.

Monday, November 2, 2009

the swine flu

sunday afternoon i was working away busily, trying to create the coolest possible lesson on war poetry for my class. the sun set startlingly early - and then i remembered daylight savings time - and then i noticed i was incredibly sore. i thought it must have been from being hunched up at my desk, working on lesson plans for hours ... and suddenly my chest exploded with a hack, my head started to pound, and i realized i'd been hit ... with the swine flu.
i missed class today, and they don't want me back until thursday. so i'm trying to look at the bright side. HA just kidding, it's pretty much all bright side. i get more sleep, more time to think up some shazam lessons, and more time to snuggle with patrick.
God sends some really nice gifts, in some really weird packages.

Monday, October 26, 2009

law-abiding citizen

dad was talking about this movie and had a beautiful freudian slip. he said the aspect that he was most interested in was "the injustice system" ... :) teehee!

Thursday, October 22, 2009

my rant about thinking, experiencing, and doing.

Today in Technology-in-Education class we had to attend an online conference. There were live sessions and exhibits, all accessible through the internet. One of the sessions I attended was called "Three Types of Immersive Interfaces: Implications for Learning and Teaching."

Basically, it was encouraging teachers to immerse their students in a subject via Virtual Reality, Second Personality, and Augmented Reality. The speakers demonstrated and explained a huge range of ways this can benefit students in your classroom. I was really intrigued with the possibilities that Virtual Reality offers for learning.

One of the speakers noted that VR provides students with new ways to explore and learn "like Alice in Wonderland ... through the monitor."
(Sorry this isn't cited; I don't know which speaker made this statement.)

The idea of virtual reality being used to enhance experiences seems appealing to me, in theory. I like to use books to explore the world, and this takes it further - exponentially. But I think that exploring the world (a world) of VR is done in a different frame of mind than the frame of mind in which reading (and, I will argue, thinking) is done. The loss of the environment of quietness and solitude in which reading takes place is a very steep price to pay.

With books, you can snuggle up somewhere warm and quiet. You can think about what you are reading while you are reading it. In contrast, I find that I struggle to think and process simultaneously when i have gone 'through the monitor.' It is very difficult to think about texting while I am texting, for example. A book, however, isn't something that is happening. It is a noun, not a verb. Technology is all about verbs; and the technology IS the verb. You don't send-a-text: you text. You don't look-at-facebook: you facebook.

I know the presenters were talking about 'immersion' in a subject being possible via virtual reality; however, I don't think that the medium of virtual reality is immersive in the deeply thoughtful sense that a book can be. Of course, I realize you can become addicted to VR, play inside it all the time, choose to live your VR life over your real life, etc. VR internalizes you - wraps you up inside of it. It generates alternate experiences for you ... and that's what these presenters are saying. Immersion, "augmented reality," is educationally a good thing.

I completely disagree.

There is something very precious and very still about a book. A book is incapable of verbing. It doesn't say anything or communicate unless you pick it up and read it for yourself. When you leave it alone, it doesn't turn itself off, hibernate, or suspend. It just is.

We are the bosses when we read books. We do all the verbing. We pick them up, we put them down, we turn the page, we drop them when we fall asleep. We fold their pages and save our places and drip coffee on them. They just are.

To quote Marshall McLuhan, the medium is the message. And I don't want to send the message to my students that technology can do the doing for them. I want them to do the doing.

Doesn't Virtual Reality provide an opportunity for students to do the doing, in ways and places they couldn't normally do it?
I would have to say no. It doesn't. The VR creators have done the doing, and students do the experiencing.

I argue that experiencing is entirely different from doing. In "experiencing," the student is a recipient of external stimuli. In "doing," the student generates action from within himself/herself. I'm not saying that "experiencing" is negative in itself, but I am saying that I believe it should not (and cannot) replace "doing."

I want my students to DO. I want them to become good friends with their own minds, to understand the way they form thoughts, ruminate, reflect, and think. I don't want them to be simply savvy manipulators of technology to get the right answer.

I want them to be able to think independently from within the blissful solitude of a quiet mind.

I want them to be able to imagine more than a Virtual Reality, to be creators of thoughts and not just information-gatherers. No wonder students have problems with plagiarism ... it's more common to find someone else's thoughts than to think for oneself. No wonder students see one another as obstacles and variables to be manipulated ... that's life in VR.

My mission, as an educator? To teach my students to think, to really, deeply, think.

and that ... is my rant.

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

dna ... it'll get you every time

i was working on my assessment assignment tonight. i pulled my big comfy easy chair up to the computer, grabbed a glass of water and a tub of that absolutely delicious Exotik yogurt - pina colada, yum! - and settled into my writing rhythm.

my writing rhythm involves reading everyone's blogs and the blogs they link to until i suddenly realize i'm going to be sick i'm so tired. then i start writing because my assignment is due tomorrow.

so i was enjoying my yogurt, prowling through matthew and chera's wedding photography, and doing my best to ignore the vague feeling that there was something i was supposed to be doing. after a while i settled into writing my assessment assignment, and the four pages (plus a chart!) arranged themselves into a coherent unit. i read a few emails (my sister and aunt were feeling witty) and pushed my computer desk out of the way, only to spy my yogurt, still sitting out on the trunk. (what? maybe that's what i'd been feeling i was supposed to be doing.)

hmmm ... is it okay to eat yogurt that's been out of the fridge for two - or three - hours?
...(contemplative stir) ... yep, delicious.

it was at this moment that i realized how much like my father i am.

i grew up watching in awe - and horror - as he sliced the mold off the cheese and ate the good half. he tasted meat that had been in the fridge past its expiry date (expiry date? try dare-me date - it's not green yet). the rest of us nibbled on golden slices while he scraped the burnt blackness off of toaster collateral damage, leaving a film of crunchy fuzz in the sink. i remember one particularly stomach turning moment when he realized the milk in his coffee had turned. nonchalant, he downed it in one swig.

i was sure he had seen (and tasted) much worse growing up on the farm. after all, it takes a special kind of tolerance to drink hot milk straight from the cow. maybe curdles wouldn't taste so bad after that?

after tonight, i'm starting to realize it wasn't necessarily the farm. maybe it was just the same weird sense of stubborn curiosity that i've inherited. the curiosity that makes me taste warm yogurt - just to see if it's still good - or just because i can.

*gross pockets*

i love my dad. i'm glad i inherited more than just his charm and devastating good looks. xox :)

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

one more good thing

today i realized there is one more good thing about patrick being my nightshiftknight. not only do i get to stretch out in bed as much as i want ...
i now get emails!
we've started emailing each other again. it feels like when we first met - i get such a rush when i open my inbox and there he is.
it's easier to keep in touch this way. because our schedules don't mesh so well, we don't want to waste our cuddling time with blah conversations about paying the power bill or things like that. so we've started keeping an online calendar, and emailing each other.
that way, cuddling gets all the gloriously kissy attention it deserves, and we still manage to keep all the bits of our life safety-pinned together.
given the choice, i'd definitely pick a matching schedule instead of an opposite one. but for now, emails and mad cuddling are doing their bit to fill in the gaps.

happy apple

i had to snag this adorable picture from my sister in law. here is her sweetiepie jelena munching away on an apple. she is one of the cutest, funniest little kids ever. the way she says "ooooooo!" melts her uncle patrick's heart. we can't wait to see her this christmas.

ps i blog when i'm avoiding schoolwork.

Monday, October 19, 2009

high school high

i was back in high school today! i went for observation, to meet my teacher and the kids, and to get comfortable in the school.

high school is so different from junior high - in a million ways, but especially in the freedom that the teachers allow the students to have.
some freedoms are steps that they've earned (like getting to read worksheets on their own, instead of having them read aloud).

and some are freedoms that they get because they're older and can live with the consequences.
these ones, i must say, surprised me a bit. in good way, mostly.
the teacher didn't make a big deal about students who came in late - didn't say anything to them about it, just passed them the work they missed, let them get settled, etc. i asked what the school policy on lates was, and he said it's a point system; the students get points for good attendance, and those points can earn them certain exemptions later in the year. so those who are late know they are only shooting themselves in the foot.
definitely different from junior high.

AND!!! two of my classes have a smartboard! seriously fun. i'm looking forward to using it.

i had a great time in the afternoon with one class. they were working on group work, so the room was buzzing and humming with conversation. i went around to each group and asked the students their names and something interesting about themselves. some were funny, some were serious, some didn't think they had anything interesting to say. but i learned almost everyone's name, just by doing that. i'm definitely going to do it with my other two classes, so i can get them down pat. it's so much easier to call on them by name than to point and hope the right one is looking.

i was really nervous yesterday. i had my first serious vicious heartburn attack ... i think it's because i was so apprehensive about school today. i was in so much pain it definitely took my mind off school - maybe that was my body's ulterior motive. also, i haven't been sleeping well - or much - since patrick started working nights, so maybe functionality decreases with the lack of sleep.

anyway, today was great and i came home and snuggled in bed with my night-shift-knight and slept for five delicious hours. now for the homework marathon ...

Sunday, October 18, 2009

the american sentence

The American Sentence was a poetic form established by Allen Ginsberg. It's like a haiku, but without the line divisions. From my extensive research (prowling through a few websites I googled ...), apparently Ginsberg liked the idea of a haiku in English, but felt that the line divisions turned the creation of a haiku into a process of counting, not creating.

So, the American Sentence is a one-line poem, made up of seventeen syllables. I think I'm going to use this poetic form next week with my grade 11s and 12s, to get them started writing poetry. It's simple and short. And even if it still is a process of counting, it's pretty fun.

It's also particularly useful if you want to sound melodramatic:

The fish you gave me leaped out of his bowl; he died of too much freedom.

Her heart is like a blushing red apple with worms digesting the core.

The night was soft with whispers; the trees melted into their own shadows.

I think it should be fun.

Saturday, October 17, 2009

how marcella sees it

today i took ashlin and marcella with me to sell cupcakes at the market. they were game to get up early, bundle themselves in about seven layers, and come with me all the way to hubbards.

as we were walking from the car to the community barn, a flock of birds swooped from tree to tree. marcella looked up at them, and shook her head in that resigned, regretful way old people have when they realize times are changing.

"i think birds have forgotten how to fly in vees," she sighed, "i never see them doing it these days."

:) i love my nieces!

Monday, October 12, 2009

while the cat's away ...

the mice will play!

*squeak squeak*

well, of all the creatures in God's green earth that i could conceivably be compared to, mice are probably at the bottom of the list.
however, patrick can purr and he's reasonably furry, so i think i can leave the title as is.

when patrick leaves for work at night, i'm usually pretty tired and think i'm ready for bed. then i go into our room and realize i'm going to have to get into bed all alone and lay there without anyone to talk to or snuggle with, and suddenly i'm not that tired any more.

the first thing i do is turn on some music, then run the water to wash the dishes. (when i'm making patrick's lunch, he's still here and i think i'm sleepy. so i leave the dishes. then, after the bedroom-sigh-notsleepy-music fiasco, i decide i can do the dishes after all. and i'll be glad i did them, in the morning.)

so i do the dishes and listen to music, putter around the house and get ready for bed - again. i pop online and check out facebook or read some blogs.
tonight, i started with patrick's blog. then, i was beguiled by heidi's blog ... and then kennyo's, ashley's, and mark's ... (i realize i am a class one creeper, but the macdonalds & company are very funny and nice people).

now i'm ready for bed and full of cute stories to think about as i stretch out and fall asleep. (that is the one and only good thing about patrick being gone at night ... i can stretch and stretch and stretch and still not push anyone out of bed).

adios, sayonara, goodnight!

Friday, September 25, 2009

a very lucky woman

ever since we moved, patrick has shown me over and over what a lucky woman i am. one day last week, he walked me to class. this week, i was on my way home from school, and he was there to walk home with me.
this morning, he had planned to walk me to school again, but dan and katie came last night so we stayed up really late hanging out with them. so this morning, i told him it was just fine if he stayed in bed, he said yeah, that's what he wanted to do, so i got ready and left.
i was walking along, listening to my ipod. the sky kept leaking drops of rain - it wasn't raining, exactly, but drops were coming down in fits and starts. since i was alone on the sidewalk, i wasn't really worried about anyone overhearing me singing along with the music. after i crossed bayview, more than halfway to school, i glanced back over my shoulder.
standing there, panting his heart out from the run, was patrick!
i was totally surprised, and he gasped "you forgot something really important! it's under my sweater!" i felt in his hoodie pockets for my puffer - my book - what had i forgotten?
"me!" he exclaimed, putting his arms out.
it was the best hug ever.
my husband is the nicest man in the world. he had run more than half of the way to school. then he walked me the rest of the way to class, kissed me goodbye, and went home.

Friday, August 28, 2009

a long journey

i feel like i'm getting back from a long journey. the kind of travel that couldn't be called a trip, the kind that leaves you changed inside - farther away from yourself, somehow, and older.
l.m. montgomery would call it an epoch - such a solid, old fashioned sounding word for "a particular period of time marked by distinctive features, events" (dictionary.com), the distinctive features and events being, of course, the loss of our baby and murky sorrow.

our baby brought us gifts. strange, i thought we were giving him life, but he gave us so much more than we gave him. he gave us the sweet wild happiness of first finding out we were pregnant - that was amazing, fun, dazzling.
then we had the happier joy of sharing the news with everyone, and shared joy is definitely multiplied. it was so fun telling people, and watching them light up and get excited with us.
when the pregnancy was threatened and the doctor put me on bed rest, our baby still kept giving. we hadn't known how loving and tender and thoughtful the christians here could be ... but we received letters and phone calls and emails, and emily even came over and made us supper. everyone shared their love and helped carry our sorrow.
when the baby died, we were so blessed as to have robb and angele visiting. this was one of the nicest, strangest gifts we received ... sharing the joy of being with them at the hardest, most mind-blowing time of our life together.
so, baby: we miss you every day. we miss the happiness you brought and left behind you. we miss the gorgeous way your heart beat and made ours race. we miss the way you reminded us minute-by-minute of God. you gave us so much joy, and when you left you took the very sunshine out of the sky. sometimes i can barely breathe because i miss you so much.

thanks to all of you who carried us in prayer - and to those loved us by sharing your own stories of sorrow and comfort.
september: back to school and a new start. i don't know whether to love or hate every day that takes us further away from our long journey.

Saturday, July 11, 2009

bed rest and the baby bean

last week we had an awesome visit from chad and leanne and their adorable little darling, jelena. we had so much fun with them (and seriously not enough sleep) and can't wait until they come back again. which they might do early next year ... when our baby is due.
unfortunately, i'm having complications with the pregnancy. i'm on bed rest for a week, and i'm exhausted with all this laying around. it's SOOOOOOO boring. and after two weeks of contsant rain, the sun is bursting out in all its glory ... while i wimp about it, trapped in our apartment.

okay, there are bright sides to all this. everyone has been so kind and supportive, and i've had phone calls, emails, and visits from friends sharing their love. joey came to visit me three times this week, and nieche and crystal came too, with all their kids, on thursday. mom and dad and aunt jeannette came over last night. emily called and wanted to stop in, but being a genius and self-saboteur, i had accidentally unplugged the phone. so here's hoping she doesn't get discouraged from trying again :).

and one added bonus is my wonderful doctor. she got me in for an ultrasound right away, and this time we got to keep the picture :). so here is our little baby bean, tiny as can be and fighting for life ... but still there :).

thanks to everyone for praying. my Saviour is giving me strength. xo.

Thursday, June 25, 2009

the sissy has an ultrasonic day

as it turns out, i'm a sissy. well, to put it more accurately ... a cyst-y. today i found out that i've got a cyst, and that was what had turned me into a wimping (and rather worried) mama-to-be. i've been having a lot of pain the past few days, and i was beginning to fear that my baby (babies?) had hunkered down in my fallopian tubes ... :S.
needless to say, after a few anxious days, today's ultrasound was a big relief.
after a painful walk through a gorgeously green and sunny halifax (hooray for the rain, now that it's gone!), patrick and i sat nervously in the ultrasound room - eyeing the ultrasonic wand with something other than joy and delight. what were we about to discover ... was this so-new pregnancy about to end in sadness? was i going to ever be a mother at all? or, worse thought, was i going to be the new octomom?
all the trepidation disappeared, however, when the doctor showed us a beautiful, healthy, thumping little grain of rice on the screen. when i heard patrick gasp, i could barely look away from the screen to look at his amazing face - we gripped hands and watched our little baby thump thump thump its existence with all its might.
the doctor took a few pictures, did some measuring, and then reassured us about my cyst (apparently everything is okay ... i've just got to stick the pain out for now).
we left the hospital in relief - joy - awe ...
in four weeks, we get to go back and look at the little bean/pickle/belzoir all over again. :). i'm so excited to see how much our baby grows!

Thursday, June 11, 2009

birthday pies and bike rides

june 10th was dad's birthday. i promised to bake him a cake, but when i was in the grocery store, i saw pie shells and remembered how much dad likes pie. so instead of a cake, i made him two birthday pies!
this was all fine and dandy. however ...
patrick and i are selling our car. it needs an inspection and we've taken the insurance off it. we got bikes to get around town, but when it came time to take the pies over to mom and dad's place ...
undaunted, we packed each pie into a reusable grocery bag with wide flat bottoms (the kind you get when you eat too much pie). then we slung the bags around our necks and the pies hung down in front of our bellies (the kind you get when you eat too much pie). then we had the most bow-legged bike-trip over to mom and dad's ...
people looked at us like we were crazy (we probably were) and i hardly dared do a shoulder check in case i upset the pie. patrick got tired of having his hung around his neck, and moved it to his handlebar. i groaned inside everytime his knee went up - bonk, up - bonk ...
but at long last, the pies arrived safely (a little jiggled - but intact).
the ride home was much more fun. the night air was warm and soft, and traffic was so light we even rode side by side and held hands for a bit. coming home after a bike ride is so much more satisfying than coming home after a trip in the car ... and i think patrick loves it because i can't backseat drive - i'm too busy riding my own bike to give him advice ;)

Sunday, May 24, 2009

How Well Do You Know Your Husband?

1. He's sitting in front of the TV, what is on the screen?
big bang theory, a downloaded movie, or scrubs

His answer: scrubs, big bang theory, or ugly betty

2. You're out to eat; what kind of dressing does he get on his salad?
caesar or poppyseed

His answer: caesar

3. What's one food he doesn't like?
... i haven't found anything he doesn't like yet!

His answer: dang, i don't know.

4. You go out to eat. What drink does he order?
water or hot chocolate.

His answer: rum or water.

5. Where did he go to high school?
kap and thunder bay

His answer: kapuskasing district high school and hillcrest high school.

6. What size shoe does he wear?

His answer: 7 or 8

7. If he was to collect anything, what would it be?
books! or old movies or old computer games ... i think.

His answer: pogs. heheh. no i'm kidding. books.

8. What is his favorite type of sandwich?
any :)

His answer: i don't know. i'll eat any kind of sandwich.

9. What would he eat every day if he could?
sandwiches and salads and soup

His answer: salad and perogies

10. What is his favorite cereal?
apple cinnamon cheerios

His answer: honey nut cheerios - i'd also take those high-fibre cereals, they're equally good.

11. What would he never wear?
high heels

His answer: i'd say a dress but i've probably worn a dress before. leather pants.

(i had to put this picture in ... it was from a photo scavenger hunt "male wearing a female's clothing")

12. What is his favorite sports team?

His answer: i don't have one.

13. Who did he vote for?
he didn’t

His answer: don't vote.

14. Who is his best friend?
me :) or chad!

His answer: janelle.

15. What is something you do that he wishes you wouldn't do?

His answer: snore? just kidding! the laundry. ... i don't know.

16. What is his heritage?
french canadian and irish

His answer: french and canadian

17. You bake him a cake for his birthday; what kind of cake?
rainbow swirl cake

His answer: one of those rainbow cakes with icing that you make.

18. Did he play sports in high school?

His answer: ha! no.

19. What could he spend hours doing?
playing old computer games, writing, or reading

His answer: virtually anything. writing, playing computer games, reading, watching movies, neglecting housework, sleeping.

Saturday, May 23, 2009

a sunshiney weekend

friday morning i got up nice and early to go to peggy's cove with girls from my esl class - nayoung, seohyun, and bailey - and joey, who did the driving honours in her adorable new blue car. it was a beautiful day - clear and bright, and almost hot, even at 830 am. we were the first ones at the cove, so we had it all to ourselves for most of our visit - it was great! we ran around, took pics, and admired the ocean ... it was definitely showing off :)
then we dashed back to the 'fax so bailey could work at 1030.

can't visit peggy's without a picture of the lighthouse.

joey picked my nose. ew!

the girls had a blast getting cool pics (with the traditional post-office ... er, lighthouse).

i just liked this window.

the sky was blue, the view was lovely ...

killing time while seohyun ran to the car for fresh batteries ... this turned out to be my favorite pic!

today was beautiful again, so i took ashlin, marcella, and laurie to the dingle. we picnicked, played, ate ice cream, and explored the little beach. the girls found three starfish and saw a limo full of wedding people.
ashlin and marcella didn't want to wade into the water to pick up a starfish that was a little ways out, so laurie volunteered. when she came out of the water, her eyes were huge and she stuck her arms out and shivered. "it's freezing!" she said. "come snuggle with me," i told her. as she made her way toward me, she looked at me, pouting a little, and said (as serious as can be) "i think i'm sea-sick."
quite the landlubber :D

when we were on the way home, marcella suddenly worried that the cat would eat the starfish. ashlin brushed her fears aside, saying "we've got them in mcdonald's cups. she'll never suspect that!"

you never know ... maple is an astonishingly clever cat.

Thursday, May 21, 2009

the dingle

the weather was perfect today - sunny and hot, with enough breeze to make everything bubbly and happy :). joey and i packed a picnic lunch and went to the dingle for an idyllic hour. we talked and read and looked at the gorgeous houses across the northwest arm.

there's something so summery about a picnic blanket and kicked-off shoes!

the water was silky, and kept being rippled by merry little breezes :)
we sat down near a cluster of starry flowers. it felt deliciously springy and fresh. i'm certainly not looking forward to a summer cooped up inside the office. three cheers for becoming a teacher and enjoying a summer vacation in the not-too-distant future!!

the eggplant

following the trend of giving houses names (think ingleside, if you read l.m. montgomery), patrick and i decided to christen our apartment The Eggplant.
we're working on a gorgeous purple and gold sign for our front door - eggplanty indeed!
i'm happy today - it's a beautiful sunny day, the temperature is soaring to 28 degrees, and i'm heading out with my sister for a picnic! i'll try to take a picture or two to post.
hope your day is spectacular too :).