Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Mall Madness

A break from shopping for new running shoes - which I got!

Just Fun on the Weekend

Leftover decorations, too bright to take down just yet, from that great anniversary party a few weeks back.
New glasses and a new smile for my toothless wonder.
Fun Sunday night at a restaurant in walking distance, the walk being most of the fun. Notice the newest obsession for the kids, Strawberry Shortcake figurines that they saved up for and bought themselves.

Just fun.


Monday, September 26, 2011

Watching them Go

That's the easy part. I drop them off, every other day for Rosie, and I know that they're happy, they're pretty much where they want to be. It's the next part that gets me, the what now??

I know this sounds crazy, I should a wildly happy woman, freedom! And it's not so much that I miss them, it's just figuring out who I am now when the house is quiet and the laundry is (almost) put away, dinner is planned and the breakfast dishes can wait until later.

So I write. I'm trying to keep moving, and mostly that's been my fingers across the keyboard. It's daunting having so much time to write. This week especially, with Rosie gone three days for the first time. Actually, just writing this now I'm wondering what the problem is, it sounds great! But there needs to be more. I'm getting back to yoga this week, and I'm going to take a crack at running. I know I have horrible balance and terrible knees, but a friend and I are taking off Wed morning with her twin babies in tow thanks to a new jogging stroller. Then home I'll be, feeling good from some exercise and fresh air, and ready to get back to writing. I can't wait!

Another decision I've made (this all seems so personal but it helps to get it down) is to give up submitting to writing contests for now and just go for getting published (whew, bandaid ripped off!). I had relied on contests for so long because I work well with a deadline, but I think by finishing a piece and sending it out and then starting another project, I'll feel like I'm actually getting ahead. I told Scott that my first rejection letters will be celebrated as a new step in the right direction.

So tomorrow I'm off with Rosie to buy some running shoes as I currently own none, the closest thing being a pair of Columbia hiking shoes that Scott is pretty I had when we started dating. So, sometimes change is good. Or in this case, a little bit of change and a whole lot of moving.


Monday, September 19, 2011

Quiet Rain

I'm moments from leaving to pick up both kids from school. It's Monday which means everyone will be home tonight. I've spent my third day at home, writing, reading, eating lunch alone. My ears are sore I think from so much quiet. CBC radio helps with that when I take a break to wash the breakfast dishes. Today went better. More writing for writing, no aims to be perfect, just to get back into the habit of getting words down, lots of words, practice. I've also made a promise to myself to read short stories on these days as well, leave whatever novel I'm reading for night time.

Soon the kids will burst in with me, wet and filled with a second wind. Dinner will be spaghetti and homemade bread, peach crumble for dessert.

I sound sleepy because leaving a day of writing and a quiet house feels like waking up after a nap. But I'm looking forward to seeing them and hearing about their day.

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

First Days

Monday morning was Rosie's first day of school. Full day, all day she was away from home. The results were smiles and squeals, stories of Joseph who wouldn't stop following her around, Jacob who asked all day if he could hold her hand, yogurt everywhere in her lunch bag (being the one and only food she attempted to eat), and that William and she chased each other around the play structure for a little while during one of their recesses. The rest of her stories weren't so believable, like the giant cow (real cow) that lives in the classroom, the one with a pink bottom. Hmm.

Yesterday was spent at home with me, getting groceries, baking galore and playing school while Rosie called me by her teacher's name, all day.

Today. Door of school opens and her teacher walks out to squeals and jumps from Rosie possibly equivalent to those heard by groupies gathered this week at TIFF. Joseph stopped chasing her today and was happy to play together in the sandbox. She didn't have enough time to eat again today because she was talking so much to Claire. I told her, how about you eat more and talk less? To which Rosie answered, that's what the teacher said. Hmm. At least there was no spilled yogurt. Oh, and she learned to do the macarena while singing the months of the year. I kid you not.

William told me that at recess, he and Rosie have been introducing each other to their news friends, I love that. William says all the grade one boys run around playing 'bad guys' while chasing each other and pushing and grabbing. He says he runs alongside telling them maybe not to play that game. Hmm.

All I know is that after more than a week of really rushed, dare I even say crappy mornings, I woke up this morning to William going on about how much he loved school and couldn't wait to get back. He loves the French (bad English go away, only French! he says), it's as if an entirely new world has opened up to him. On the way home in the car yesterday (the only negative so far, not being able to walk) William was telling me he has deux garcons and une fille for his amis, not bad huh? He was so excited to have 'a sentence' that went back and forth between us. So glad we made the switch to French school, so worth it.

My two days alone have consisted of writing almost two thousand words. I love the first 250, plan on scrapping the rest and restarting. Feeling a little down about that tonight, seeing how out of practice and rusty I seem to be. It's so hard to love something I've written one day, only to hate it the next. Not to mention how weird it feels to eat lunches alone with only a book. Not that I'm complaining about that. It's still only week two, I always give myself until Thanksgiving for things to feel really comfortable and underway. Just glad the kids are happy, Scott's classes are starting somewhat smoothly for him, and I'm getting something done and enjoying a bit of quiet.


Monday, September 12, 2011

Early Days

Of course, this morning went off without a hitch and I can't post the pictures to prove it because my laptop with the pictures is in need of a good fixing, hopefully tonight. But I can tell you that for Rosie's first day, the Real First Day of School I'm calling it, there was sun and smiles all around.

But now I'm here in this big old quiet house, drinking coffee at my computer while listening to Sarah Harmer and marveling at her lyrics which are like poetry to me and inspire me to no end.

So I thought I'd start with a blog and be grateful for another beautiful day and that I may eat my lunch outside, alone with a book for a little while. Grateful for happy kids at school, grateful for an amazing anniversary party this weekend that we had for Scott's beautiful parents, and grateful for a supportive husband who has made me promise to write during these days alone and not to touch the laundry or other chores.

Grateful for the words that I dream will fill up these days and months and years that are only just beginning to open up before me.

Tuesday, September 6, 2011


This picture probably highlights one of the better moments of the morning if you can imagine. William didn't want to go, although the teacher told us (the patient, patient teacher) that after we left the school where our son was screaming at us to stay, face up to the window, that after that, he was fine. He met us at the end of school, at the same window, positively beaming. He told us tonight there were just too many new things but that he's looking forward to going back tomorrow. I can hear him up in bed in the room he shares with Rosie, testing her on the names of his English teacher and his French teacher, promising to teach her all the French he learns. He's a happy kid tonight, already counting up to fifteen in French. Yup, he's good and now I get to finally relax and enjoy the newness and excitement of the week. But first...

..insert the muttering of mild profanities under my breath here.


Monday, September 5, 2011

Flip Flopping

School starts tomorrow and I'd be kidding myself if I didn't admit how nervous and apprehensive I am. It's William's first time at being there five full days and who is this teacher, person, I'm about to hand him over to? Rosie's home with me for another week until her days start next Monday, she goes in for half an hour this Wednesday just to check things out and she can't wait. Besides this, we've never been inside the school except to register and William wasn't with us. We did a lot of fun things after dinner this past week, treaty things for the end of summer holidays, and one night we went to the new school to let them explore a bit, peek in some windows, and play on the play structures. William's bravery astounds me. There were a few, 'I don't wannas' tonight, but nothing that's worrying me. I think it's the lack of time I'll have with him this year that is causing my butterflies tonight. That, and the hoping, desperate hoping, that he'll be happy. He's getting to an age where he's keeping things inside. No more screaming fits for the neighbourhood when he skins his knee, instead he'll walk away from me muttering, 'I'm fine, I'm alright'. So I'm not expecting him to tell me exactly how he's feeling, and I know he'll be okay. It's just what happens. But I except we're all pretending a little tonight to ignore the lazy summer days we've loved together and play it a little cool.

We spent today playing at a favourite local market, traveling through muddy corn mazes, buying cards (in a contraband Shopper's Drug Mart) in order to go back home shivering in our hoodies, to have hot chocolate, Scott's delicious homemade kettle corn and playing Crazy Eights and War until dinner time. After dinner, sausages, corn and fresh tomatoes, we had a Super Mario championship, followed by bath and bed, one final singing of the summer's theme song, the Cat Came Back, in it's entirety. Kids are sleeping, William's lunch is made, time to go downstairs to see Scott and what he's carving tonight.

It sure helps not having to walk through this alone.


Thursday, September 1, 2011

Love & Rainbows

Wow, it's been a long time since I've written here. I've missed it but I'll admit I haven't known where to start. Since I last visited here, we've had the best trip to Ottawa where Scott had a conference at the Museum of Tech and we all stayed with Aunt Paula and Aunt Claire. It was a week of talking and swimming and eating and walking and walking and walking and riding buses. Through the streets of beautiful downtown Ottawa to see the changing of the guard and the locks, through the market for chocolate covered licorice and beaver tales, through museums and stores looking for souvenirs like William's beloved double-decker bus. It was a week of growing confidence around cats and monkey bars and learning how to smoosh crab apples just right under our heels. Best yet, it was visiting and getting closer to our aunts who we love dearly. To be greedy and have them all to ourselves for a week, without having to share them with ten other relatives as is often the case with family get-togethers. To really get to know them and appreciate every bit of their generosity and coolness which can sometimes be tricky to keep up after days with young ones running underfoot and a muck. After a week in town, we hijacked Scott from work and took him away to the trailer for a cozy night of smores and hotdogs which we had just eaten before the storm started. Sleeping and playing Battleship inside a trailer was novelty for sure.

I'd been thinking a lot lately of the things we didn't get to do this summer, a trip to Centre Island, more camping, copious trips to the creek. But after this trip, it's impossible to think of anything but the things we did do, got to do. And that makes the upcoming start of school a little less bittersweet and makes us a little more ready.