Most of what I really need to know about how to live and what to do and how to be, I learned in kindergarten. These are the things I learned: Share everything. Play fair. Don't hit people. Put things back where you found them. Clean up your own mess. Don't take things that aren't yours. Say you're sorry when you hurt somebody. Wash your hands before you eat. Flush. When you go out into the world, watch out for traffic, hold hands and stick together. ~Robert Lee Fulghum
Tyler. Kindergarten Graduation Party. Friday, June 23, 2006. PS-love your spiky hair, dude!
This dog has been a part of our life for 12 years. We picked him out shortly after we moved into our first house and brought him home when he was only 7 weeks old. We named him Brandy and he has made us laugh, cry, pull our hair out, and love him. He has always been playful and extremely full of spunk. He never did "settle down" and mellow out. We kept him anyway. He was always just Brandy. He has chewed socks and underwear. Swam in pools, rivers, lakes and mud. He has eaten chunks of our sofa set and torn wallpaper off the wall. Jumped off a truck and broke his pelvis. But we have kept him through thick and thin. Better or worse. But now we fear the end is near. He had quite a spell today, which left him gasping for air and weak. He has layed around all afternoon since. He seems better but his breathing is still ragged. We debate about taking him to a vet, but we don't need a vet to charge hundreds of dollars to tell us what we already know. He is old. He has had his day. Brandy, you crazy old dog. I know it will soon be time for you to go.
This has been one of my scrapbooking projects for the last 2 months. I have been putting this album together to show everyone back home what our year in Alberta was like. The fun. The friends. The action. While putting this project together, I could not help but reflect on this past year. Life is good. We have a nice life here. And I, in particular, have gained so much.
I was part of the workforce for 13 years. I think I was managing work and life quite well, but everything felt "rush, rush, hurry, hurry" all the time-like you were living in a blur. I left the work force when we moved here. My leaving the work force was part of "the deal". Ron travels alot, and someone has to be there for the kids. We decided that it would be me. I would leave the work force and change my focus to being a stay at home mom. This year has given me much time to see & appreciate the little stuff. To hang around school in the morning if Tyler needs an extra kiss before I leave. To read a book. To weed the garden. To chat with a new friend and go for coffee on the spot if I feel like it. To have friends over for lunch on a weekday. To take a nap. To volunteer at school. To cook healthy meals. To exercise. To look out the window and watch the rain. To organize years of neglected things. To scrapbook all day if I want. To slow down.
Nancy arrived at school on Monday morning and surprised us with these mugs. She said it was a token of the friendships our "lunch" group has developed over this past school year. I was so touched by this gesture. I love the PINK, the poodle and how it says "bonjour" along the top. So perfect.
You see, of the many worries I had about moving to Alberta, I was worried that I might be lonely. Not lonely in the sense of feeling alone, because I have Ron and the kids, but lonely in the sense of "girlfriends". Finding new people to share companionship with in a girly way. This worry has evaporated. I have found friendship among this group of 5 women. We share the commonality of having children in Madame Bonnie's kindergarten class. But our little "lunches" have allowed us to get to know each other.
To bond. To express. To share. To laugh. To be there. To listen.
I think friendships are so important for mental health-not just mine, but everyone's. Some of us have two children, some have 3, some work, some don't, some of us have husbands, some don't, but we have each other. We give the gift of friendship. And I, alone, am so very grateful to have these fun, intelligent women in my life.
Nicole, Teresa, Denae, Nancy and Maureen. Thank you so much.
Is this not the saddest face you have ever seen? It is Tyler watching the final seconds of the Stanley Cup Final as he realizes that the Oilers are going to lose and not bring home the Stanley Cup. He has turned into quite a loyal little hockey fan. He wears his Oilers jersey for every game. He knows the names of several players. He is devoted in every way his little 5 year old heart can be.
woke up to a beautiful sunshiney day. tyler gave daddy the clay plaque he made. it shows daddy and tyler cheering for an oilers game. so cute. gave my sweetie a frame that said "best dad". strong dad. kind dad. wonderful dad. fun dad. smart dad. called my own dad at home in nova scotia. so thankful every time i hear his voice. red lobster for supper with the kiddos. he wore the new shirt that he said he didn't like. gorgeous family day. so grateful and so blessed.
"We don't need more money, we don't need greater success or fame, we don't need the perfect body or even the perfect mate. Right now, at this very moment, we have a mind, which is all the basic equipment we need to achieve complete happiness."
I have declared today a scrapbook day. I am doing nothing today except scrapbook. Tyler is "amie special" today. He is taking his "goalie gear". but of course. Hunter has a math test today. Ron will return from the grande el presidente tour.
“ Don’t say you don’t have enough time. You have exactly the same number of hours per day that were given to Helen Keller, Pasteur, Michaelangelo, Mother Teresa, Leonardo da Vinci, Thomas Jefferson, and Albert Einstein. ”
Yesterday we drove in the pouring rain to Fort Saskatchewan so Hunter could dance in the year end recital for her ballet school. We had initally planned to skip it because we are so tired of the extra-curricular schedule,but the office manager phoned to let me know that I hadn't picked up my tickets yet and that Hunter was getting an award. So we decided to go (I did not tell her so it could be a surprise) and our little dancer was awarded a small trophy for "effort, hard work and enthusiasm" in her Grade 2 ballet class. So proud of her. I feel so incredibly lucky to have this fun, intelligent, happy, loving child for my daughter. She is such a great kid, but it makes me so warm inside when other people tell me what a great kid she is. Especially when I go to a parent/teacher meeting at school and her grade 4 teacher tells me what a "treasure" she is. I am so proud of the way she is growing up. Sometimes I wonder what I did to deserve this wonderful child.
Last night Ron took the kids out for a bit of shopping. Nicholas was visiting yesterday with his new goalie gear, and Tyler was positively green with envy. There were a few tears shed, so Daddy decided to take Tyler out shopping for some goalie gear and Hunter was going to receive cash in the same amount for our trip to American Girl. They went to Walmart, Toys R Us and Canadian Tire before finding what they were looking for. So the little goalie is happy now. He came into my room this morning fully suited up(despite vomiting a few times in the night), rolling around singing "O Canada" in a crazy mixed up version of French and English.
While they were out shopping, I ran out and did a little shopping of my own. I went to Please Mum where a 50% off sale was happening. I picked up for Hunter an orange skirt and top, and matching pink skirts and tops for her & Charlotte. We will give Charlotte's to her for her birthday when we go home. When I arrived home, Hunter came to show me a very wiggly tooth. She actually let me pull it out for her, but I told her that the tooth fairy was out of cash and was giving her an oufit instead. More than a fair trade, don't you think?
It's Saturday and Ron has gone to get his Jeep detailed for the "Presidential Tour" happening this week. He just called to tell me that he was at BUBBLES. Haha. Now, I could not resist asking if BUBBLES was there, where was Julian and Ricky, did they serve rum and coke, etc. I'm sorry, but a business named BUBBLES is just crying out for some TRAILER PARK BOYS remarks.
Tyler is on the sofa watching TV. He was sick a few times last night, so we are keeping a low profile today. Hunter just tumbled out of bed. It's 8:31, and I haven't done a single thing yet today with the exception of blogging. I 'm tired. I slept on the corner of Tyler's bed last night so I could be there when he was sick. Not the best sleep. Now off to eat some Fiber 1 for breakfast.
I was awakened this morning by a smiley boy who happily announced that I could go back to bed for "two hours" because he was making a "surprise" for me and that I could "go to the washroom or either watch TV, but stay in my pyjamas in the bedroom." I hated to burst his happy bubble by reminding him that it was a school day and we had to get up and get going. So I never did get my surprise, but I think it was breakfast a la Tyler.
So cool that at five years old, he knows that nothing makes me happier than almost staying in my pyjamas for two hours.
This morning I woke up with a huge pain in the neck. Ouch. Hurts to look up or down and turn sideways. Not sure what I did but I cleaned out a couple of closets this weekend, so I must have lifted something the wrong way, not realizing I was straining something. I hope it will be better tomorrow.
The kids had so much fun last week attending the International Childrens Festival here in St. Albert. Childrens entertainers brought in from all over the world to share their talents in theatre, music, acrobatics, rhythm and culture with our children. It was fantastic to see such a child-focused event. Tyler's class attended the Rhythm and Music Tent to see a 40 minute French Canadian song and dance show. It was fun to see him trying out square dancing. Afterwards, we went to the face-painting and balloon animal tent, followed up by a couple turns in the bouncing tents. The next day his class attended a live performance in the Arden Theatre by an Australian Theatre Company called Gecko. The show, "Hidden Dragons" contained lively martial arts sequences, billowing silk and dream sequences. Tyler loved it. An appropriate choice for his age group. Hunter's class attended a paper-making session, a show called, "Sharon, Keep Ya Hair On" by an Australian story teller, as well as free time for face-painting, balloon animals, tattoos, etc. Hunter was invited after school by Alexandra to walk around the Festival for some more fun. Nothing could have made her happier.