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Gotta Keep ‘Em Separated

5 Dec

The Christmas Season is well upon us now.  And since we are officially past Holly’s birthday, with party and “day” under our belts, we can turn our attention to what’s really important: all the stuff we are going to receive in the next 4 weeks.

Now, please, don’t get me wrong.  We are very grateful and awed that so many people love our children enough to go to the effort of actually entering a store (going online), in the month of December (December 23rd) and handing over well earned cash (swiping their credit cards) to purchase an item they spent all year thinking about (called to ask what each girl wanted).

Sorry, I couldn’t resist.  No really.  We love it.  Don’t stop…

It isn’t the types of toys that make me fear Christmas.  In fact, this year, it sounds as if the girls are going to have their best Christmas EVER (gift-wise anyway- the lack of snow situation is seriously worrying Bronwyn).  It isn’t even the quantity.  It is the gnawing, mind-devouring agony of the post-Christmas week going something like this:

G1:  That’s MINE.  I got it for Christmas.

G2:  But I was playing with it.

G1:  Well you can’t, cuz it’s MINE!

Me:  Just let your sister have it, she was playing with it, and you didn’t even care until you noticed.

G3:  Hey!  She has MY *thing*.

G1:  But you said you didn’t want it.

G3:  I did not.  I said I didn’t want to play with it now.  But now I do, so give it back.

G2:  How can I play *X* when she has all the pieces?

G1:  Well, *so and so* didn’t give you all those things, she gave them to ME.  And I want to play with them.  ALL.  Right now.

Starts crying

G1:  She HIT me.

Me:  I’d hit my sister too if she were being so selfish (in my head of course, I’d never say that out loud for real… ever… or anything….)

Me:  Don’t hit your sister.


Does this happen in anyone else’s house?  How do you deal with it?

Elaine and I can (now) fondly reminisce about our days sharing a room in the basement.  We actually (based on the Berenstein Bears’ book, I think) plastered masking tape down the middle of our bedroom floor.  My side had the door, so I made Elaine enter and exit our room through the backless closet door (which led into the laundry room).  We had to share a room, but that didn’t mean we had to share anything else.

I want my kids to grow up in a house where everything is communal property.  Not everything, of course.  They each have their “special” toys and keepsakes that they keep in their rooms, and have a 6th sense when someone else is even thinking about touching them.  But most things.  I want them to be able to open up the My Little Pony bin and play together without attaching ownership onto every comb and accessory.

I dream about a home where all the toys are there to share and be played with, instead of hoarded and purchased in 3-packs.

However, the more I poll my friends, and listen to their experiences, the more I fear this is a pipe dream.

Maybe kids are meant to covet ownership as a means to control their lives, and practice their negotiating skills.  Maybe this is a lost cause on my part: insisting on joint custody of every Barbie.

All I do know is that I can’t referee every fight and preside over every judicial hearing, or I will go crazy.

What do you think?


To-Do List: Birthday Edition

13 Aug

1.  Drink coffee in bed (note to self, get sheets in laundry in time to put back on bed for tonight)

2.  Have Bruce make breakfast (do not tell him there is no food in the house)

3.  Go grocery shopping (by yourself)

4.  Paint nails (use new Crackle nail polish that you got at the Rideau Centre this week.  Remember that when you asked Bruce which colour to get, he encouraged you to get 2!)

5.  Go golfing with Bruce (beat him… on one hole…)

6.  Eat fancy and expensive steak dinner at 2nd favourite restaurant (use gift certificate that you lost before you could give it to the intended recipient… but then found after you had bought a new one)

7.  Eat birthday cake (made by Bruce, who, after checking back of the boxed mix twice still failed to see the addition of water, so it was more like a giant Birthday Cookie)

8.  Thank Bruce for making me a Birthday Cake (and the girls for remembering that green is my favourite colour)

I don’t think I have ever crossed off so many to-dos in one day!!!

Happy 30th Birthday!

Bye Bye Baby

5 Aug

This past weekend, I looked at Bruce and said, “let’s get rid of Josselyn’s crib already”.

He agreed, but it wasn’t until last night that I finished all the mattress swapping/bleaching/rearranging that was needed to actually put a bed in Josselyn’s room.

We had one in the garage.  A cute little white sleigh bed that Bruce bought for Bronwyn when she was about 3 months old.  So we cleaned it, and hauled it into the house, and set it up, and…

Josselyn climbed into it, and fell asleep.

I wish I had a picture for you.  It was adorable.  At one point she called to me that we had forgotten to brush her teeth.  I hauled her out of the bed and she brushed her teeth for 3 seconds and then climbed back in.  I didn’t hear from her again until the morning.  Well, there was one cry-out in the middle of the night, but no freaking out, and no escaping!

The older two tried to convince me that they could get her out of bed themselves in the morning, “you know, in case you want to sleep in?!”.  Thoughtful, aren’t they?

I have been reading a little bit lately (in the blog world) about other mommies who are worried about this new stage.  They wonder what they will do now that they don’t have babies.  They can’t decide whether to have more children.

I just do not relate.

It isn’t that we DO.NOT.WANT.ANY.MORE.KIDS.  but we don’t.  And instead of feeling like I am missing out on something, all I can think of is how great this summer has been with 3 kids who all (mostly) toilet, eat, and walk themselves.  Joss doesn’t quite fit in that description, but that is mostly my doing, not lack of skill on her part!

I love that they don’t nap.  I live off of spontaneous trips to the beach.  I am excited that no one will die if lunch is late by half an hour because we decided to stop at Walmart on the way home.

And I LOVE that no one needs help eating corn on the cob.  Or corn on the log (Bronwyn) or cob on the corn (Holly).  They crack me up!

Between the freedom to have fun whenever and wherever, and the blessed, blessed heat, this has been the greatest summer ever!  What’s the next milestone for us?  I’m not sure.  Going back to work?  All 3 kids in school all day every day?  No more CARSEATS?!?

I wonder which will come first…?

Honeydew meets Honey-do

22 Mar

Sorry about the lack of bloggery yesterday.  Would you believe that I just forgot?  I blame our Pastor’s wife.  I am currently enthralled in a series she recommended and now am incapable of living my life outside these books (pun fully intended for you, Steph!).

Today I actually checked off everything on my “To Do” list except the one thing that was on there when I woke up!  For those of you who care about these things, that one thing was to clean the calcium deposits out of our toilet in the hopes of correcting its lazy flush problem without, you know, draining the field bed or something drastic like that!  So, you can sort of understand why that didn’t get done, right?!

But I did make snack for Pioneers (cut up fruit, including honeydew melon, sour cream dip made with Greek yogurt instead, and banana muffins), go grocery shopping, return a purchase at Canadian Tire (where I picked up an AWESOME new Spring wreath for the door- now THAT has been on my “To Do” list for years!), buy Holly new rubber boots (apparently her hand-me-downs from Bronwyn had holes in them- not a good feature in a rainboot…), and figure out how to work the big overhead projector at the church using the VCR (!)- Hanna Barbara Great Adventures of the Bible anyone… anyone?!?!?!  Pause while the nostalgia washes over me…

Anyway, I thought I’d round out this post with some more pictures of our trip:

Bronwyn playing with trains in the chapel

Holly and Bronwyn showing off their puppet creations


Ryan and Elaine with Aubrey chilling in the knitting circle

My parents, with Joel, probably playing a board game

Keeping entertained in the car

Pretending to blow out candles on her birthday cake

Josselyn just loved Steph's new dog, Bella

Who aaaarrrrreeeee you?

5 Mar

WordPress (like most blog platforms- even the free ones) have site stats that you can look at to see how well your blog is doing.  This can be addicting.  Especially when you announce that you will be blogging every day for a month (and you have a large family) so your stats have skyrocketed and you are left to wonder who all these people are who have suddenly taken an interest in your boring life.

My site stats for March, so far, have shown an average of a hundred hits a day.  They don’t show you who is viewing your page, just that there have been so many visitors.  Granted, my mother could be clicking on this blog a hundred times a day, but I doubt it.  For two reasons:

1) She’s very busy.  So busy, in fact, that I  can’t even get a hold of her in the evenings.  I compensate by calling her during the day.  At work.  During office hours.  She has one of those jobs that comes with a desk, and a door, and her own phone extension, so she can’t really get…away…from…me…. (that is me trying to get my voice to face in print… not easy).

She tries.  She says she’s busy, and that she has lots of work to do and all that.  But I don’t believe her.  So I talk and talk and talk, and sometimes she answers.  I don’t think this is because she’s not listening, but more because she’d prone to water in her ears and has a hard time on the phone.  At least that’s what she tells me…

2) She doesn’t read things twice.  Not not EVER but not usually.  This could explain why there are literally thousands of books in my parents home.  You might not notice if you only ever see the main floor, but upstairs?  A whole other story.  My mom has floor to ceiling bookcases in her bedroom- packed with books.

And that is not all.  Oh no, that is not all.

There are also boxes of books in the closets.  I suspect that they are there from when we moved… nearly 8 years ago.

My dad bought her a Kindle for Christmas.  He also bought her 4 matching, blue Snuggies.  But that is another story.

I think we can say, with confidence, that the number of hits to this site are not just a case of a mother’s pride in the achievements of her offspring (although, after this post, I might be banished to the bottom of her bookmarks).

So, anybody want to reveal themselves?  Send me a note, email, Facebook message, or comment at the bottom.  Thanks!  And happy reading.

11 Resolutions for 2011

16 Jan

I have been pondering this post for… well… over 2 weeks already, and all I have is the title.  Since I wasn’t really feeling this concept, I am changing it up a bit.

Instead of 11 resolutions, I am going to make 12 life changes.  Each month I want to commit to doing something every day for 30 days.

I can’t say I will keep at each one every day for the next year, but some might stick longer than its month.  I hope so!

January: luckily, I have already started this one.  I am exercising daily for 30 days.  I aim to be leaner, trimmer, and stronger by the time February rolls around.

February: for this month I have decided to devote myself to reading my Bible every day.  I know that it is a shorter month, and that I won’t be getting my full 30 days, but I hope it will jumpstart my reading for the whole year if I do it early.

March: I am going to pledge to blog every day for the month of March.  I chose March for this one because I hope to have a lot to write about;  upcoming spring, March Break etc.

April: for April I chose to dedicate myself to drinking more water.  So for this month I am going to drink the recommended 8 glasses a day.

May: Let’s call this dental hygiene month.  My dental habits are not stellar and I would like to improve that.  This one is for you, Joan!

June: I hope to run every day for the month of June.  I may switch it with May if the weather is awesome.  I reserve the right to do that!

July: for this month I am going to attempt not to buy anything superfluous.  Which might be hard since it is the month of Bronwyn’s birthday, but we’ll see how it goes!

August: I want to set aside this month to do something fun with my kids every day.  Whether it is a walk, going to the beach, or playing cards;  something that is not already part of our routine.

September: this one will be “healthy eating month” which isn’t something I will DO, exactly, but I pledge to not eat any junk food for the whole month.

October: I am going to call this Organization Month.  I want to organize a different part of my house every day.  Even a bit of decluttering will do.  Just something every day.

November: I am going to redo my exercise routine from January.  This way I can be fit and trim for the holidays.

December: tbd

Alright, I am afraid I have forgotten an important one that I had intended to include, so I am leaving December blank in the hopes it returns to me.  Also, if anyone has any ideas for things to do, I’d love to hear them, and maybe even use them!