Friday, December 2, 2011

Believe

A few weeks ago, J.P came home from school with a letter he wrote to Santa Claus.

He was very excited for us to read it and then mail it.

Every day, he would ask if he had a reply. And each time, I would soften his disappointment, "Honey, the big man is busy this time of year. Don't worry, he will send you a letter soon."

This week, his letter arrived. 

"Mommy, I'm on the nice list! The nice list!"

"That's wonderful."

"Santa is real! He answered my letter! See? This is proof that he really does exists!"

Oh no!

I thought J.P would never believe in the man in red. Four years ago, the boys caught my brother dressing up as Santa. And my eldest shouted, "He's a fake!" It was a hilarious scene.

But it's amazing what a letter can do.

I expressed concern to Mr. O but he smiled and told me to let it be. I asked him, "Do you believe?"

He responded, "Do you?"

Hmm. Good point.

Let the magic of Christmas live on.

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

The Voice

What a weekend!

It began with a wedding celebration - my cousin finally tying the knot. It was a beautiful evening of love, laughter, tears and joy. And the whole family partying the night away.

When I returned home, I was completely exhausted. My throat felt coarse and dry.

Had I been laughing and shouting too much? Hmm. The music was awfully loud to carry a decent conversation.

Oh dear, I lost my voice.

And to top it off, I picked up a chest cold.

Can you imagine the despair and frustration I felt; just trying to communicate?

I couldn't even talk.

And when I did, my voice sounded like Marge Simpson!

Mr.O told me I shouldn't strain my voice.

But I know my boys were loving every minute of it.

No commands, no hollering, no scolding and no singing.

Just silence.

Watch out boys! Luckily, I still have the look.

No words needed here.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Some Books Take Longer To Read

"Mommy, how many pages are there in the book you're reading?"

"Oh, over seven hundred pages."

"Wow! And you're on chapter 50!"

"Yes."

To tell you the truth, it has taken me about a year to read this book.

I started it last December, and only read a few chapters. Honestly, I just couldn't get into the story.

Weird.

Could it be the new author selected to finish the epic fantasy series?

Possibly.

I usually read books in a week or in a month. A year?  No.

During the summer holidays, I picked up the novel and once again, I lost interest.

Sigh. Will I ever finish this book? This is ridiculous!

I need to get over this, and move on.

So, last week before bedtime, I would read every night.

Finally, the storyline was more appealing. And I couldn't put the hardcover down!

On Monday, I completed the whole book. Yay!

I guess some books take longer to read.

No worries, I started the next saga. I wonder how long it will take me this time.

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Unbelievable

A week ago it was Hallowe'en.

A.R dressed up as a Trojan warrior and J.P was "Harry Potter".

At seven o'clock in the evening, we took the boys along with their cousins around the neighbourhood. Oddly, the streets were quiet and it seemed not many children were out this year.

Where were all the kids?

Door to door, we made our way in the dark. Homes were decorated with pumpkins, scarecrows, spiderwebs and ghosts.

As we turned to a new street, a group of rowdy teenage boys came roaring passed us.

And to my amazement, they were all going trick-or-treating.

What? They're not even wearing costumes!

Are you serious?!

These freakish ghouls shoved their way to the front door to collect their loot.

Unbelievable.

And they paid no heed to the children; especially to my little boy who was the smallest, youngest and cutest of them all!

Luckily, home owners took notice of these scroundrels; and asked J.P to wait. They gave him extra chocolates and treats. Even taught him a new Hallowe'en song.

I was ecstatic!

As for J.P, he was oblivious to what was going on. He was happy to celebrate the most spookiest night of the year.

And gleefully shouted, "Happy Hallowe'en!"

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Stronger

I've been pumping iron for three weeks now.

Can you believe it? Neither can I.

I'm not sure what possessed me to begin but I'm not turning back on my decision.

I didn't realize how much I missed weight training. I used to be a fitness freak in my twenties; working out and playing volleyball three times a week.

After having children, I stopped being physically active. Too busy. Too tired.

Sound familiar?

Uh-huh.

Don't get me wrong, I don't want to bulk up.

I just want to get leaner, stronger.

Besides, this forty-year old mama needs to take care of herself.

And that means daily exercise, and having a good diet. After reading this article I'm convinced that weight training is good for my health.

Honestly, I want to be in the best shape of my life.

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Sentimental

Have you ever watched Hoarders or Consumed?

Two similar shows that feature clutter, and chaos that surround the lives of people.

My house isn't picture perfect but I would like it to be more organized.

So, every week we make the purge - donating household items, used clothing and toys.

Lately, I've been cleaning out the boys' closet - only to find their baby clothes.

Cute diaper shirts, sleepers, blankets, bibs and little socks.

Can you believe it?

A wave of emotion swept over me, fond memories flooded my mind.

How could I part with all of this? No!

Silly me. So sentimental!

I have to make room somehow. Oh, it's so hard to let go!

I decided to save all the Winnie-The-Pooh outfits, sleepers and blankets. A theme I chose to decorate A.R's nursery. Perhaps, one day I can give these precious items to my future grandchildren.

I was so pleased with the progress I made. The next day, I asked the boys to clean out their toy box. They worked diligently, selecting, and discarding the toys they no longer play with.

It only took an hour!

They kept Star Wars collectibles, action figures, cars and their favourite stuffed animals.

My work is done for now.

Not until, they grow up, and leave these things behind.

Sigh.

Monday, October 24, 2011

Hula Time

It's never too late to learn something new.

I've always believed that we should keep growing and keep learning.

As a young girl, I would dream of becoming a dancer. I wanted to learn jazz, tap, ballet, and ballroom but never had the chance to.

And Mr. O has been the voice inside my head, urging me to dance. He has been asking me for years.

You see, his mother teaches hula and is getting older. He asked who would continue her work and pass down her knowledge of the Hawaiian culture.

True.

So, that is why I chose to learn to dance the hula.

Every Saturday, we would practice the basics at my sister-in-law's house. The boys would learn a Maori warrior dance and the girls would learn hula.

Honestly, it's harder than it looks but it's great exercise!

Mr. O is already thinking of dancing at The Merrie Monarch Festival - a prestigious hula competition held annually in Hawaii.

No. I don't think so.

It's only my third lesson!




Wednesday, October 19, 2011

That's My Boy!

Last month, we attended Meet The Teacher Day at J.P's school. As usual, there was an evening barbeque, and afterwards, parents could visit their child's classroom.

J.P was excited to show his classroom, and present his school work. I was pleasantly surprised to read his autobiography and see his artwork.

Here's what he wrote about his faith:

I believe people can live in peace and harmony together. I believe that war will not continue. I believe that we can raise enough money for charity and those with cancer. I will believe that our friends have strong bonds that even death cannot break.


I was just as impressed as his teacher.

And here's the kite he created in honour of Terry Fox. It reads:



I can change the world by healing the wounds of the people. But if there is a wound that no medicine can heal. There is only one thing that can heal it, love.

Isn't that beautiful? Terry Fox would be proud.

That's my boy!

Monday, October 17, 2011

Wired

I'm having social media fatigue.

I need a break.

It's nice to know what your family and friends are up to once in awhile but not all the time.

And when Blackberry experienced a service outage for three days, I couldn't contact my closest friends on Blackberry Messenger for a day. But I was still receiving my Facebook updates and Twitter feeds.

I laughed when my brother stated he had to resort to live conversations - face to face.

Could we be suffering from crackberry withdrawal?

I think so.

A day without Blackberry Messenger wasn't so bad.

Have we forgotten to socialize and interact with others on a personal level? Who still makes phone calls anyway? I now receive texts from my own mother!

Everywhere we go, people are wired.

We want the latest news, gadgets and technology.

Even as I write, the alerts on my Blackberry haven't stopped flashing. Who could it be? Is it breaking news? Should I check?

Oh dear.

Friday, September 30, 2011

Writing Woes

"Mommy, what are you writing about?"

"Nothing."

"But you're writing something in your notebook."

"Yes."

"Can I see?"

Silence.

"Come on, J.P. Let's go!"

A.R gets the hint, and pulls his little brother away. J.P is reluctant and disheartened.

If there is one thing you shouldn't do; and I mean this in the nicest way - do not disturb the writer.
The truth is, I need my space - to think, to write.

Hmm.

An issue I need to address with Mr. O.

But I do whatever I can. Even if it means jotting down my thoughts and ideas on a piece of paper. Or working in the family room.

What can I say? September has been a busy month, filled with appointments.

I guess the only solution is to write late at night, or blog on the go!

No?


- How do you cope with a busy schedule? Where do you write?

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Fun at Ontario Place

Today may be the last day of summer but luckily, we were able to take advantage of the beautiful weather on the weekend. A day trip to the big city is always an adventure!


A visit to Ontario Place means plenty of fun on amusement rides. J.P took his first ride with his older brother on the Cyclone Speedway, then Free Fall and First Flight rides. We loved seeing his reaction to all of them. Priceless! If there's one good thing about going to Ontario Place during the off-season, there are no line-ups or big crowds. You can go on as many times as you want!


Can you imagine having a water park all to yourself? The water was cold but the boys didn't want to miss out on all the fun at Soak City.


It was the perfect day to be sailing in Lake Ontario, or strolling along the marina. The cool, shimmering waters took my breath away.


We headed over to the IMAX 3D Cinesphere to catch the afternoon showing of Hubble 3D. I think we were tired from all the walking, fun and excitement of the day. It was nice to take a break. However, our little boy was worn out, he fell asleep during the movie!

It was a lovely day at Ontario Place. Thanks to my brother for the free Play All Day passes!

Friday, September 16, 2011

J.P's Crush

An intimate conversation with my youngest son on Monday morning. It caught me off guard but nonetheless, I loved his sweetness and candor:

"Mommy, there she is!"

"Who?"

"Emily."

"Oh, she's very smart."

"I know, and beautiful too."

Huh? What did my little boy say?

I looked at J.P in disbelief; and he beamed as Emily walked by.

My boy has a crush! No! He's only eight!

"Mommy, I held out the chair for her in class."

Nice. My son is a gentleman. I taught him well.
"I even told her I liked her." That I did not teach.

"What? Why?!"

"Well, this is my last year here. I'll be going to A.R's school next year."

Oh, too bad. You'll miss her.
"But honey, you're way too young to have a girlfriend."

J.P nodded his head, "I know. I only like her as a friend."

Whew! Now that's a relief.

The school bell rings, and I give him a hug and a kiss. I watch him fall in line with his classmates.

As I turn to leave, J.P calls out, "Bye Mommy, I love you!"

Yes, that's more like it. Don't forget about me. I love you too.

Monday, September 12, 2011

Summer 2011

Oh, summer! Where did you go?

Won't you stay awhile longer?

I'm back to the normal routine - waking up early, making breakfast, packing lunches and taking kids off to school.

Could this be a bad dream?

Shall we sit and reminisce the good times we've had?

Like the time we took a family trip to Ottawa, and celebrated Canada Day. Guess who came to visit on that long weekend?



There were large, enthusiastic crowds waiting on Parliament Hill to catch a glimpse of the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge. And we were in the middle of it. Upon their arrival, cheers erupted and chants of "Will and Kate" greeted the royal couple. There was no doubt that royal mania hit Ottawa!

The month of July was also busy with day trips to Balsam Lake, family picnics, play dates with cousins and watching summer blockbuster movies.

And how could I forget my beloved garden. It provided me with so much pleasure. The perennials I planted did not disappoint. Here's one of my favorites - summer phlox.



In August, we spent the weekends at the beach. Frolicking in the water, playing in the sand and basking in the sun. What a life!

I even managed to do all the back to school shopping ahead of schedule so I could plan our camping trip.

And that is where we ended our summer holiday. Camping at Silver Lake Provincial Park. A hidden gem in Ontario.


My boys were so happy to go camping again this year. They love sleeping in a tent, roasting marshmallows over the campfire and gazing up at the stars.

What more could we ask for?

It was a great summer!

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Flowers In Bloom

Thank you Frankie Flowers but I'm hooked on gardening! I practically read your Get Growing book every night!

Just when I thought I was done weeding, digging and planting. I found myself going back to the garden centre. I couldn't resist picking up this lovely hydrangea.



I also found this ornamental shrub in my backyard. Mind you, I never even planted it! I believe it's Abbotswood Potentilla.


Take a look at my Swan Lake and Altissimo climbing roses.





Look, there's room between the tomatoes and hydrangea. Let's plant Columbine! I love it when the flowers are in bloom!


With all this gardening, no wonder Mr.O thinks I'm crazy. I talk flowers, dirt and mulch all time! Maybe I should start a gardening blog.

No?

Monday, June 20, 2011

Supermarket Mayhem

My boys are well-behaved in school, in church and in restaurants.

They also do extremely well in formal settings like weddings.

But when we take them shopping - it's a disaster!

Arggh!

Why must they run around amok in every aisle? Chasing each other other, laughing out loud and paying no attention to other shoppers.

I just don't understand.

I pull aside my eldest boy, and give my youngest a menacing glare. Somewhere in the pasta section, I begin the lecture.

Blah, blah, blah.

A.R's blank stare says it all.

Will this supermarket mayhem ever end?

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Happy Gardening

"Mommy, gardening is hard work."

Wise words from my little boy who is supposed to be pulling out weeds, picking up twigs and debris.

Instead, he's exploring nature than gardening.

"Look there's a worm! There's a beetle!"

I catch my breath from digging, and squat beside him. We stare at the insects, and play in the dirt for awhile. J.P reminds me to take a break, and enjoy the outdoors.

However, our rest was short-lived. Mr. O and Mr. L, our friendly neighbour, cut down the two diseased fruit trees in the backyard. It was a big job - and even bigger clean-up! The boys pitched in to collect branches and sticks. They did such a great job that we rewarded them with some ice cream!

And luckily, it only took three days to get rid of the wood piled up at the side of the house. Free firewood, anyone? People happily picked up lumber to use for camping, or for their wood-burning stoves!

And I'm glad to see the trees gone. Now there is plenty of space and sun in the backyard. The possibilities are endless - should I plant an ornamental shrub or tree, or create a vegetable or a rose garden? Hmm.

But first, I'll focus on my perennial garden. I've finished extending my flower bed; divided and moved a few plants. Mr. O and the boys finally put up the garden arch that has been sitting in the basement for three years! And I've selected and planted new perennials. Here are the plant tags that I've saved and catalogued:

Chrysanthemum and poppy.


Clematis and butterfly bush.

Hopefully, I can post pictures when the flowers are in full bloom. Right now, the garden is a work in progress. There is still so much to do.

And summer's almost here! Oh no!

Happy Gardening!

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Spring Cleaning

It only took one look and I knew what I had to do.

I just hated the clutter that was accumulating in every corner of our home. Do we really need all this stuff?

No.

I think it's time for some spring cleaning.

Every room was dusted, vacuumed and polished. And closets, cabinets, drawers and pantry shelves were organized.

Clothes, household items and toys were packed for donations.

Oh, Martha Stewart would be so proud!

But no time to rest, I'm off to the backyard to tackle my poor, neglected garden.

Sigh.

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

This Is For You, Mom

It's official, I'm going to start training - to run.

Call me crazy, ambitious but I'm determined to prove the naysayers wrong.

It's about time I made the leap from couch potato to runner. Mind you, I did say running a marathon was on my bucket list of things to do.

On Mother's Day, I didn't have to look far to find inspiration - there's my mom.

Despite her ongoing battle with breast cancer; she remains positive, motivated and dedicated to her walking. She makes fitness a big part of her life. Her courage and strength has inspired me to do something more - not just for myself physically but for her as well.

She often talked of doing a cancer walk/run fundraiser to show her appreciation for all the wonderful support she has received these last few months. In June, she will finish her six-month cancer treatment. Why not do this for her?

So, here I am, making a commitment to get in shape and to run for a cure. And I'll be documenting my journey with you. The highs and the lows of training.

I hope you can be on my side to keep me focused. I know it will be a long, arduous road ahead but if my mom can endure all the pain, and suffering so can I.

This is for you, Mom!

Thursday, April 28, 2011

A Royal Wedding

Poor Mr.O. He's tired of all the news coverage of the royal wedding.

Not his cup of tea. Pity.

I admit I've caught royal wedding fever in the last few days. It stirs up fond memories when I was a ten year old girl. I recall waking up at four o'clock in the morning to watch Prince Charles marry Lady Diana Spencer in 1981.

That spectacular event left a vivid impression on me. The glass carriage, the wedding gown, the tiara, the pomp and fanfare. This is the stuff that little girls dream of - a real life fairytale.

But as you know, there was no happily ever after.

Sad but true.

In these troubled times, it's no wonder to feel cynical; grief and despair. Even scepticism. Is the monarchy still relevant in the 21st century?

Only time will tell.

Like the rest of the world, I'll be watching bright and early on Friday. And hoping for some magic, nostalgia and true love.

A little good news wouldn't hurt.

No?

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

The Battle of the Books

Did you know I have two little bookworms? Every night, they pick out a book, crawl into their beds and do some reading.

And lately, A.R has been bringing two books to his bed. Sometimes, I'd catch him reading till midnight.

"Why are you up so late?"

My son said he had a list of books to read since he joined the Battle of the Books. I told him I never heard of it, and he further explained that it's a wonderful program between public libraries and schools in the region of Durham to encourage reading for all students.

Little did he know that the Battle of the Books is also a competition held every year throughout the Durham region. And that he actually joined the school team! For the past month, A.R and five other members of the team would practice answering questions about the books they've read. No small detail overlooked.

On the very first day of competition, A.R was very nervous. I told him not to worry and that he'll do fine. And sure enough, they came home first in the Junior Semi-Final, and the following week, first in the Junior Final.

A.R's school was off to the Junior Regional Championships!

Last Thursday, Mr. O took my son to the competition. There were six school teams; and said the competition was intense. As a spectator, my husband couldn't handle the pressure. However, he was so impressed with all of the kids. Certainly, it was a battle of wits. A.R's school missed two questions during the Regular Battle but was perfect in the Lightning round. They finished fourth this year, and we're so proud of them!



After the match, my son announced he'll be back for the Battle of the Books 2012.

What a bookworm!

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Behind The Smile

I live a simple, quiet life. And I consider myself blessed to have a wonderful family, friends and a lovely home. It would seem my life is perfect.

But it's not.

In fact, I've been feeling miserable these past few months. I'm sick, tired and weak. And I am not enjoying 40 so much. There are days when I don't want to get out of bed; I don't want to write, to think and to feel.

However, I get up, I smile and bravely go my way. I do my best to make life happy and normal for my kids.

Luckily, I have this little space I can turn to. It's my saving grace. Here I can find some comfort, peace and happiness - even for a brief moment.

For now, I keep active with the family - gardening, soccer and skating are on the list. Anything to forget my troubles.

I'm certain I'll resolve these health problems soon. I'm seeing my doctor again next week. Hopefully, he can put me out of my misery.

Until then, I smile and wait patiently.

Monday, April 4, 2011

One of the Boys

A little each day, I feel distant from my boys.

Let's face it, I'm not interested in Nintendo, Wii and computer games. In fact, Mr. O has taken up the hobby of playing Pokemon just so he can stay connected with his sons.

As for me, I am having trouble making the connection. And lately, I feel so out of place.

So alone.

Wasn't there a time when my boys wanted to be with me? What happened?

Now, they are constantly with their father, following his every move.

But I wasn't going to give up on my kids. Surely, there must be something I could do with them.

Let's play some soccer! What a great idea!

We headed to J.P's school, and discovered we had the soccer field all to ourselves.

Yippee!!!

I was goalkeeper for my boys' team. Who would have thought?

It was hilarious to play against Mr. O. especially when A.R used his fancy footwork to score the winning goal.



No more worries here. I guess I'll do whatever it takes to be one of the boys.

Monday, March 28, 2011

Spring

Spring is here.

And the birds are busy building their nest above our bedroom window. Each morning, I hear them chirping, fluttering and colliding against the window pane.

These birds return every year, my alarm clock of the season.

Wake up! Wake up! Wake up!
A new day has begun.

Can I stay in bed a little bit longer? I've been hibernating.

Did March Break come and go? I could have sworn I had the kids all week but it seemed like an eternity.

Like the birds, my boys wake up at the crack of dawn and shrill all day long.

The very thought of spring brings renewal, rebirth and change.

And a special birthday.

I can't believe my eldest son turned eleven years old.

Sigh.

Where did the time go?

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Tears of Joy

On Monday evening, I received a phone call from my brother. The moment I heard his trembling voice, I became very concerned and asked him what was wrong. He began to recount the details of his day and said that he and his lovely wife had been approved for adoption.

I was ecstatic! However, I was confused with his reaction. I could hear him weeping on the phone. Isn't this what he's been waiting for? I slowly repeated the good news to see if I had heard him correctly; he confirmed it was true. Then what was the matter? I realized he was sobbing tears of joy. I guess it's been an emotional journey for my brother and sister-in-law. Finally, after two and a half years, they're one step closer to becoming parents. I can only imagine the sense of relief, and elation he must have felt at that very moment. I know it's been a long, difficult process for them but at least, they will soon have a little one to call their own.

I expressed my happiness, and congratulated them. I proudly announced the wonderful news to family and close friends. After all, I'm going to be an auntie, and my boys will have a new cousin.

My brother was overwhelmed with emotion but he summed it up beautifully, "Today I feel unspeakable love."

As do we, dear brother.

We wish both of you all the happiness in the world.

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Little Dreamers

When a talented ten year old girl sang her version of Lady Gaga's new song, "Born This Way" on You Tube; it not only caught the attention of the singer but she became an overnight sensation.

A few days later, my brother messaged me and asked, "Can I be A.R's manager?"

I laughed and said, "Yes". However, I stated that I want my son to finish his education first. He attends a French Immersion school; he takes guitar lessons, sings, dances and loves to draw. I told my brother that I want my boys to be well-rounded. And to my surprise, he praised me for doing a good job so far.

Mr. O and I know A.R is talented, smart and charismatic. And we're very proud of his accomplishments.

The truth is, I just want my son to have a normal life; to be happy and have a wonderful childhood.

Not thrust into the media spotlight.

Besides, what's the rush? My son still has room to improve and grow. We know he has big dreams but I think it's best that we let him work hard, and decide what he wants to do with his life. And we'll support him wholeheartedly.

As for my dear brother, he will just have to wait until A.R is older.

And to Maria Aragon, keep singing your heart out! She's definitely a star in the making, and an inspiration to all little dreamers.

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

The Life of A Tween

The telephone was ringing off the hook on Friday evening.

Almost every hour!

Apparently, it was A.R's classmate; he needed help with his Nintendo game.

Mr.O and I are used to quiet and uneventful evenings. Usually, the boys are reading, playing games and listening to music.

We are not accustomed to being inundated with phone calls - especially directed to our eldest son.

Mr. O was flabbergasted. I was amused.

You begin to wonder, what's next? Facebook? School dances? Girls?

Oh no.

A friend of mine poked fun at me, and said I was raising a "heart-throb". I laughed at the notion, it was ridiculous. Not my boy!
Is this a sign of things to come?

You bet.

Welcome to the life of a tween.

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Guess Who's 40

I've been dreading it for weeks.

My husband stated I've been depressed.

No. I've been in denial.

Sigh.

I'm forty years old! How do I feel? Numb? Speechless? Silly me. What's all the fuss?

I'm reminded of a quote by George William Curtis, "Age is a matter of feeling, not of years."

Despite having streaks of grey in my hair, and not being quick on my toes as I used to be. I still feel like I'm sixteen.

I don't try to hide my age. I'm quite comfortable in my own skin.

I'm even told life begins at 40. Really?

So, rather than having a big and lavish party, I chose a simple and quiet celebration with my family.

We ordered pizza, chicken wings and of course, had cake. I was in the company of my loved ones, and cherished every minute of it.



And I especially loved the homemade card from J.P. Priceless!
What could I possibly want? Life at 40 is grand.

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

The Calm Before The Storm

Brace yourself, a major snowstorm is coming!

Oh no!!!

Let's be honest, if you live in Canada, you can expect plenty of snow and freezing temperatures around this time of year. No surprises here.

And if you haven't noticed yet, did you know that February is the coldest month of the year?

Brrr.

Nice, eh?

But I'm not complaining, this is nothing compared to the winters I grew up in. The frosty weather would begin in early November and end in late March. And the snowstorms were much worse back then! I tell my boys the winters were long and harsh.

Now it seems, winter starts in January and ends in late March.

Hmm. Take your pick.

So, if you've already grown weary of this cold blast, don't despair. It's going to be a snow day, a winter wonderland!

No?

Then, by all means, dream away.

Preferably lying on a white, sandy beach on a beautiful sunny day.

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

The Boy and The Blanket

It seemed like a typical laundry day - collecting, assorting and then retrieving articles of clothing in and out of the washer and dryer machines.

But I never thought I'd get sentimental.

While folding A.R's laundry, I came across his beloved Winnie-The-Pooh baby blanket. I held it briefly, reminiscing how I used to sing to him, and how I'd tuck him in his crib.

Oh, those were the days!

Sigh.

As I continued to fold the rest of his clothes, it suddenly occurred to me that my son is now ten years old, and still sleeping with his baby blanket!

Huh? How can this be?

Images of Charlie Brown and the Peanuts gang danced in my head. Particularly, Linus.

Hmm.

So, instead of placing his favourite comforter back on his bed, I hid it in his drawer, hoping he wouldn't take notice.

I was wrong.

Before bedtime, there was such a kerfuffle upstairs. A.R came down and asked, "Mommy, where's my blanket?"

I smiled, and said, "Honey, you're ten years old now. Do you need to sleep with it?"

A.R laughed sheepishly but the look on his face said it all.

"It's in your drawer."

I guess my plan to sever ties between boy and blanket was futile.

Perhaps, I should let him grow out of it on his own. If not, I still have three more years to think of a better plan.

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

A Beautiful Winter's Day

How do you mend a broken heart?

Well, you think about your family, your children and the blessings that you have. Quite simply, life goes on... you just move on.

And that's exactly what I did last weekend. It was such a relief to get out and spend some quality time with my loved ones.

Last Saturday, we had our first snowstorm of the season. We canceled A.R's guitar lessons in the morning, and stayed home. By lunchtime, it stopped snowing. Mr. O took out the snow blower, and quickly cleared the sidewalk and driveway. He said the weather was nice, and suggested we take the boys tobogganing. What a splendid idea!



As you can see, it was a busy day at the neighbourhood park. Young and old were careening down the hill in sheer delight. Did you think I'd pass up the opportunity to relive my childhood? Believe me, I took many turns down the slope!


For most of the afternoon, there was an overcast sky but the sun finally came out. I was content to watch the kids toboggan; and thrilled to take pictures at the bottom of the hill. This is my favorite photo of the boys.


A week ago, I was inconsolable.

But there is hope - all I needed was my family.

And catching a glimpse of this view made me feel grateful....what a beautiful winter's day!





~ Thank you for all the sweet and kind comments in my previous post. Your prayers, and thoughtfulness have been a comfort to me these last few days. ~

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Sadness and Loss

I'm an emotional wreck.

Seriously, I'm a mess.

All I can say is that it began with joy, love and celebration.

Could I be dreaming? Am I really expecting once again? Could this be true after so many years of trying? If so, it's a miracle!

A home pregnancy test confirmed positive. Mr. O and the boys were excited to hear the good news, and J.P said he'd be the best big brother in the whole world.

And for six weeks, we basked in the happiness and excitement.

Then the unthinkable happened.

No!

I was spotting for more than three days; each day I was praying and hoping that everything would be fine.

But last Monday, all my hopes and dreams were shattered.

Honestly, I never knew I'd feel this way, I'm stunned.

And my heart aches.

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

A New Beginning

A new day. A new year.

A new beginning.

And that's how exactly how I feel.

Although I haven't made any New Year's resolutions, I feel hopeful about the many challenges ahead.

I know there will be decisions to make, plans to arrange and most importantly, I hope this change brings joy and inspiration.

Now that the kids are back to school; I'm still recovering from post-holiday celebrations - sadly the Christmas decorations are still up, and the goodies are almost gone.

But I am in no rush to put away the decor this time around.

Instead, I take a deep breath, and tell Mr. O if he's ready to take the next adventure with me.

Welcome 2011!

It's beginning to look like a bright, and promising new year!