Thursday, May 31, 2007

Frequent Posts

I think I've been going a little crazy with the blogging lately...I think that since school ended I've been at a bit of a loss when it comes to filling in my free time. Not that I have an abundance of that, since 12-13 hours of my day is filled with little boys and their messes and their myriad concerns, but I've been posting every day for the past week or so, and sometimes more than once. Anyways, here I am posting again. Ayden is gone! It feels like a piece of me just decided it was all grown up and walked away! He hugged and kissed Matthew and I at the ferry terminal, grabbed his suitcase, and away he went with his lovely Auntie and didn't even look back once. Matthew sobbed! To cheer him up I took him to McDonald's for lunch, and then to the park this afternoon. Having only one child is SO EASY!! (my apologies to those of my friends who have only one child--I know it is very hard!) All of a sudden I'm so patient and attentive and don't feel guilty at all! Matthew kept calling Ayden, forgetting that he is gone. Here are some pix from our adventures today!
Here is Ayden at our place before we left; he has a cutout from his 'Chirp' magazine for toddlers, which is part of a contest where you take Chirp with you on vacation and take photos of yourself with him, and enter the photos in their contest. Ayden thinks that if you take the photos, you are an automatic winner. :) He's a winner in our books, anyways!

Here are Ayden, Matthew, and Auntie Megan at the ferry terminal

Matthew and I had ice cream this afternoon at the park, because it was SO HOT!

Since the water park was closed (we gave it a shot--they don't open until tomorrow) we had our own water park fun in the backyard!

Here is SuperMan (not to be confused with Spider Man) in his cape (don't be dissuaded by the Cars print on his cape; he is definately SuperMan)

Some water fun

Yesterday, as I mentioned, it was super hot. So in the afternoon we pulled out the sprinkler and had some water fun. Enjoy the pix!



My Wucky Day

Today Ayden is going to Victoria with his Aunty Megan to go fishing and to visit. He has been counting down the days as I mentioned before, and now it is THE DAY. Brent is away for a few days and, though I put them to bed in their own room, they have this 'daddy is away' sleeping radar and they both wound up in my bed, one on either side of me, in the wee hours this morning. Ayden woke up for the day around 7:00 and wiggled with joy and declared, "Today is my lucky day!" and proceeded jumping. He has not stopped since! Last week when he found out about his trip he said "Thank you!! Thank you!! I will be SO GOOD I will never say 'idiot' anyomore!"
'Idiot' has been a problem word for him ever since he watched Shrek 2: I have not heard it cross his lips since this promise. Pretty funny! He just informed me that his clock says it is time to leave for the ferry (we don't actually leave for another hour and a half). What a wucky day! :)

Wednesday, May 30, 2007

This morning I heard some activity in the playroom and found that Matthew had gone in by himself and created a whole world of choo-choos and was very engrossed in it:

It's SO HOT here! Yesterday the sun came out in full force, and today is the same! I'm not sure of the temperature but I would estimate somewhere around 25 degrees or so. Enough to need sunscreen and a hat and to be crabby if you are stuck outside for longer than 10 minutes. Wednesday mornings we always walk to the Rec Centre for Ayden's music class (2 km one way). We walk rain or shine. I used to push the boys in the double stroller but Ayden was getting big enough that he was sort of too tall for the stroller seat and he was always wanting to hop in and out to walk or to investigate things. So I switched to putting Matthew in the jogging stroller and getting Ayden to walk. Most of the time Ayden would pout until I let him ride on the footrest at Matthew's feet. And then 1/2 the time Matthew would want to walk and Ayden would get in the stroller seat. So, to avoid all attempts at laziness on Ayden's part, today we ventured the entire trip on foot with no stroller. Of course this means I have to carry all our stuff on my back (snacks, water, extra underwear, the sling in case Matthew really can't make it, my wallet, keys, etc) and it makes me sweaty, but I figured it was time to venture out without the stroller. Matthew was in 7th heaven, and needed close monitoring at intersections and near dog poo. Ayden sat down several times in the shade for a rest and pouted because I didn't bring the stroller. It took us 45 minutes instead of the usual 25. BUT it was very successful. No one got run over and everyone walked all 4 kilometers without injury. Hooray! We had walked to the park without the stroller before, once, but never attempted this long of a trek. The downsides of no stroller are that it takes us longer, I have to carry all our stuff, and I don't get as good of a workout because I'm walking slower, but these are far outweighed by the upside of all three of us walking 4 km once a week and learning about crosswalks and cars and how to clean up after your dog (so gross when people don't) and spiders and gardens and how to stay out of them and how high does a retaining wall need to be before it is too high for a four year old to safely walk on it?, etc.
I also learned some new things about Sake. Ayden has 100 children in Sake; he is their dad. I presume Roro is his favourite child since he is the only one of his 100 children to have a name. Ayden also picked up another job: he is the sewer repair person and goes down into manholes to clean them (guess what we saw on our way home from music class today?). Also, they have a water park in Sake that is open all year round, even in the winter. Ayden is very perturbed that our water park is only open in the summer!
Ayden is also very excited and he has been counting down the days for a week: tomorrow he is going on a trip to Victoria to visit his Aunt Megan and she is going to take him fishing!! She gave him a Spiderman fishing rod for his birthday and he has been dying to use it ever since, so this will be quite an adventure!

Tuesday, May 29, 2007

Ahhhhhhhhhhhh...mommy time

Last night I went to dinner with a close friend to celebrate passing my licensing exam. Awesome! Brent stayed home with the kids (hers too) and put them to bed while we went to a restaurant and had YUMMY FOOD and talked for four hours. Suddenly I feel like a grown up again! It was fantastic to go OUT and just talk uninterrupted with a very good friend...sometimes a break is just what I need! Work is a break and I enjoy it very much but there is something even better about just hanging out with a friend eating good food and laughing a lot and sharing the good, the bad, and the ugly together. :)

Monday, May 28, 2007

Mini Hitler and moeemoeemoeemoee

While Matthew was sleeping this afternoon Ayden fell and cut a tiny, tiny scrape of skin just below his nose, and to calm him down it really really needed a bandaid. So we were out in the front yard for 2 hours with a little boy we call "Mini Hitler" or "Aydolf" making all the neighbours laugh.

Also, today for the first time Ayden (disguised as Aydolf) ventured out of our complex on his bike and joined a group of 'big boys' for a 5 minute chat on the various and wonderful attributes of Spiderman. I know it's not cool to put pix of other peoples' kids on the internet without their permission but I took this photo from far enough away that you can't identify anyone. The one in red is Aydolf:


On another note, has anyone else noticed their children turning into incessant chatterboxes as soon as they become verbally adept? With Ayden I just thought he was a chatterbox by nature (there is a strong verbal diarrhea gene on Brent's side of the family--though you wouldn't know it from Brent would you?) because he could (and seriously still does sometimes) talk for FOUR HOURS without a break. Well, I'm realizing that maybe this wasn't a personality trait but more of a developmental stage: either that or I have two chatterboxes on my hands. Matthew does NOT SHUT UP!! He gets so excited about whatever it is he wants to tell me that he's constantly stuttering "Moeemoeemoee mom mommy mom moeemoeemoeemom moee..." and then telling me what it is he saw or wants to discuss. This may sound cute from a distance but it is shortening my life span with irritation!! I've timed him, and sometimes he stutters on the Moeemoee for up to 45 seconds. And he uses it at the beginning of EVERY clause! It is worse when daddy's home because it becomes "Moeedaeedad mom moeedamodaee daddy da da da moeemoeemoee" and sometimes a few "Ayens" thrown in for good measure. Mwaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa! At this point I'd rather pluck out my nose hairs one by one just for fun!
Here are the boys riding bikes together this afternoon:

Saturday, May 26, 2007

End of the Road BBQ

Tonight we had a celebration barbeque for all the people in my Paramedic Academy class. We are done! Only one other classmate and myself are completely finished that final, licensing exam I told you about last week, but we are all finished school and precepting, so it was cause to celebrate. It was great to see (almost) everyone again--we had an amazing group of people in our class and we've missed seeing each other. Though we certainly don't miss going to school! We had the BBQ in our backyard, and were very thankful the sun peeped out right at the beginning of the party after threatening to rain all day. We had 17 people in our little house and little backyard, which was loudly pronounced "HUGE!" by all my classmates, who live West of us where real estate prices escalate bigtime. We had spouses and kids here too, which was so nice because we got to meet each others' families after a year and a half of hearing about them (good and bad!). Brent and I performed our traditional roles of "Chef" and "Hostess who talks a lot and ignores all things culinary" and everyone had a great time. One of my classmates is a professional magician so he busted out a magic show for us after dinner and wowed us all and made us laugh, which was quite a treat. He charges 700-$1000 for a 1 to 2 hour show so we were priviledged to be treated for free :)
Now all Ayden wants to do is magic tricks like "Watch my chip disappear," etc (as the chip crumbles behind his back from his hand to the floor), and we had a hard time keeping Matthew out of the magician's bag of tricks. If you ever have an event you want entertainment for, this is your guy--he's not weird or dark at all; he is an entertainer with excellent stage presence...anyways, if you have a chance check him out! www.jamiedgrant.com
This guy has done shows for Cirque du Soliel cast & VIP parties, Jimmy Pattison's Christmas party 2006, and he won 3rd prize in the Ripley's Believe it or Not contest for a trick he invented. Man, am I moving up in the world or what? :p
Anyways, it was great to see everyone from class again and introduce them to my family. We love hosting get togethers at our house and every time we do one we say "we should do this more often!"
Be prepared! We may invite you to one soon!

On a side note: I was 4th in line on the BC Ambulance Service seniority list for a full time position, but I found out this week that the full time position they posted in March was cancelled. It takes months for full time positions to be posted, seniority lists compiled, and hiring to take place, so likely I won't be eligible for full time until late into next fall...this throws a monkey wrench into the financial plans as far as us surviving while Brent is away at RCMP school. I don't know what to do!! I've now re-applied to closer, busier stations as a part timer, and also to Vancouver post as a part timer, but I'm pretty worried. For me to make enough for us to survive while Brent is gone, I really don't think I can be in Squamish. Things in my job move as slow as molassas so I can't rely on being out of Squamish before Brent leaves...pray for me while we figure out a solid plan B as far as work is concerned! Thanks!!

Wednesday, May 23, 2007

Adoption

I read this little allegory on someone else's blog (someone else who is in the adoption process, though through a different path than we travelled) and it kind of kicked me in the pants for my last post. I also saw a YouTube video on a friend's blog about a little boy who only lived 99 days and it made me feel petty for not being grateful for the time that I have with my boys. I know you guys understand about blahhh days and all, they are a part of life and of raising kids, but I wanted to share:

DIFFERENT TRIPS TO THE SAME PLACE
by Diane Armitage

Deciding to have a baby is like planning a trip to Australia. You've heard it's a wonderful place, you've read many guidebooks, and feel certain you're ready to go. Everyone you know has traveled there by plane. They say it can be a turbulent flight with occasional rough landings, but you can look forward to being pampered on the trip. So you go to the airport and ask the ticket agent for a ticket to Australia. All around you, excited people are boarding planes for Australia. It seems there is no seat for you; you'll have to wait for the next flight. Impatient, but anticipating a wonderful trip, you wait, and wait, and wait. Flights to Australia continue to come and go. People say silly things like, "Relax. You'll get on a flight soon." Other people actually get on a plane and then cancel their trip, to which you cry, "It's not fair!" After a long time, the ticket agent tells you. "I'm sorry, we're not going to be able to get you on a plane to Australia. Perhaps you should think about going by boat." "By BOAT!" you say. "Going by boat will take a very long time and it costs a great deal of money. I really had my heart set on going by plane." So you go home and think about not going to Australia at all. You wonder if Australia will be as beautiful if you approach it by sea rather than air. But you have long dreamed of this wonderful place, and finally you decide to travel by boat. It is a long trip, many months over many rough seas. No one pampers you. You wonder if you will ever see Australia. Meanwhile, your friends have flown back and forth to Australia two or three times, marveling about each trip.Then one glorious day, the boat docks in Australia. It is more exquisite than you ever imagined, and the beauty is magnified by your long days at sea. You have made many wonderful friends during your voyage, and you find yourself comparing stories with others who also traveled by sea rather than by air. People continue to fly to Australia as often as they like, but you are able to travel only once, perhaps twice. Some say things like, "Oh, be glad you didn't fly. My flight was horrible; traveling by sea is so easy." You will always wonder what it would have been like to fly to Australia. Still, you know God blessed you with a special appreciation of Australia, and the beauty is not in the way you get there, but in the place itself.

Some days are just blahhh

You know, there are some days when I look around and think, 'How is it that every other mom on the planet seems to like being with their kids so much?' Every other mom I see has such a great smile on her face, and she's so patient with her well behaved children, and she's happy. There are days (like today) when going to work sounds like the best news I've heard all day, and I feel like there is something wrong with me because there are moms out there who stay home full time and do great. And there are moms who work and parent, and seem to do it well. Sometimes, my kids are boring. Sometimes it is just too much effort to teach them socially acceptable behaviour and to keep them out of the peanut butter jar (my kids get into the peanut butter instead of the cookies) for another 6 or 9 or 10 hours!!! And then the next day, and the next day, and the next! Sometimes I don't CARE about the owie I've already kissed fourteen times!! Sometimes I get so TIRED of my name "mommy, mommy, mommy, mommy!" that I want to puke. Am I a terrible person? And the urine. I really get tired of the urine. There is pee on the toilet seat every time I sit down, often on the floor near the toilet, sometimes in Matthew's bed in the morning, sometimes on me, and often in the bushes at whatever park we are visiting. The other day Matthew had a park peeing incident where he was aiming for the bush and got out of control and it got on his shirt, so he overcorrected and it got on his pants, underwear, shoes, and leg, then he overcorrected again and got his arm...meanwhile my hands are soaked in pee because I'm frantically trying to HELP him aim at the bush....this incident was very funny.
Ayden said something humourous today:
'Mommy, do you like being a girl?'
'Yes! I like it a lot, it is very fun being a girl.'
'Oh. I wouldn't like being a girl. I just don't understand them.'
Now who, I ask you, would be teaching him that? Very funny.
And the fff poo is funny. And I like the hugs. They also do this little bum wiggle dance while singing 'bum bum!' that makes me laugh. Matthew loves water and it is amazing to see his joy and fearlessness while swimming. Ayden loves to sing.
I guess they're not that bad, after all. Some days are just tough. ;)

Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Ffff poo

Remember how Matthew uses the world 'poo' for food? Brent decided today that he would try to teach him how to connect the 'f' with 'ood' (or at least 'oo') to make it a little more food-like. Matthew can say 'f' but has not yet connected it with 'oo.' The result was Matthew valiantly declaring "Ffff poo!" I laughed so hard that I'm sure we'll get ffffpoo for months to come, because now it is deemed funny.

Playtime

Somehow Ayden figured out that a mayor is someone who rides in a car with a driver. This morning he kept calling Matthew 'the mayor' and driving him around in this impromptu car. I don't know that I've even mentioned the word mayor, let alone explained it to him, so I'm not that sure where he got the concept from. However, here is a picture of 'the mayor' and his driver. They have their own secret gibberish language, too, which of course Matthew is oblivious to. It is amazing how they negotiate interactive and parallel play according to each others' developmental level. I'm so glad they have each other to play with.


From here they moved on to harrassing the cat. Oh, the poor, poor cat! We got her when Ayden was eight months old so she has thankfully never known life without a child, or she would never recover! Ayden used to give her 'kisses' when she was a kitten, which included a lot of slime and some hefty leaning. He progressed to yanking mitfuls of her fur, to cutting her whiskers, to pulling on her tail, and, when he learned to run, chasing her. Here is an old photo of one of their calmer interactions (Ayden was 2):


Here she is on her own:


Nowadays she has two rugrats to protect herself from. She does quite well most of the time, and can sleep through almost anything (you can tell she knows the boys are nearby because her ears are always swivelling towards them, cautiously gagueing whether it is safe to continue sleeping or whether she should rouse herself to escape). Her favourite place to sleep (the back of the couch) is also one of their favourite places to play, so this cautious sleeping/ear swivelling happens a lot. Sometimes she puts up with their attention and sometimes she's just not in the mood, which she handles with a gradual increase in nonverbal communication: some tail twitching and ear laying, and then a swat with no claws, and then THE CLAWS. Sometimes she is in a playful mood and will initiate playing with the boys, and other times she's just crabby and will scratch them unprovoked. This morning she was minding her own business, irritably watching the birds at the bird feeder and licking her chops. She's dreaming, because she has never caught anything wild in her life, save occasionally one of those large bugs that looks like a cross between a mosquito and a daddy longlegs. Anyways, the boys simultaneously looked at her (from the mayor's car) and got these Calvin and Hobbs mischevious looks on their faces, and they got out of their car, climbed on the couch, and started petting her fur the wrong way. This is very irritating for her and they know it.

Here's Matthew saying "Mommy, ouch! Scratch!" (yeah, well, don't bug her!)


When she swatted at them, they started poking her, and teasing her with pointed fingers, driving her nuts! It was very funny to watch them play with fire like that, shrieking and giggling. She eventually ran away to the garage, where she has a little hideout and easy access through our cat door. Poor, poor Paige.

Saturday, May 19, 2007

The Teeth

We have this joke about "the teeth" which really needs a picture to do an explanation justice:

I hope my friends don't mind my posting this picture!
In this next photo we taught Matthew 'the teeth:'

Too funny

Friday, May 18, 2007

Poonami

Have you heard of Tsunami? Flooding? Volcanoes? We had something akin to a natural disaster this morning in our house. We call it, a poonami.
Matthew got up an hour or so before anyone else in the house (I guess the morning wanderer has not completely left the building), and since he is now toilet trained and sleeps in his underwear, he felt the need to go. He came downstairs to use his little plastic potty in the living room (don't ask me why the four other toilets in the house were not satisfactory, nor why he didn't come ask for help), but unfortunately the removable bowl of the potty had been removed and left in an alternate location the day before. I can imagine his consternation as he was at his wit's end as to how to locate said bowl before his poop made an appearance! He didn't. It was quite a runny poop, really. I guess he then didn't know what to do, because his footprints covered the entire 700 square feet of downstairs laminate flooring (thank you, thank you, thank you that we have laminate floors). You could track him to the front window, the couch, the toybox, Brent's backpack where he helped himself to some crackers, the kitchen, the table, the back door, the other couch, etc. Then the footprints (though much less poonamish at this point) went up the carpeted stairs, down the carpeted hall, and into the carpeted playroom, where he sat down.
Yuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuck!
Brent discovered this at 7:50 a.m. and he has to leave to catch the bus at 8:00. Guess who got to clean up the poop? You guessed it. It took me an HOUR AND A HALF because it was all dried and caked on at this point, and because it covered approximately 900 square feet of our house. This morning I earned the right to have him clean my butt when I am old and feeble. I will be living with him and he will be changing my diapers. Period.
This situation was howlingly funny and I just had to share it with you. Tonight before we go to bed I will be checking to make sure that stupid bowl is in the potty! I may even place it outside his bedroom door!

Story Time

Once upon a time there was this little girl named Melissa. When she was 8 and 9 and 10 years old, she used to watch this show called "Rescue 9-1-1" on television, and she would make her brother watch it too. He didn't like watching the scary parts or the bloody bits, but she made him watch it anyways. It was a show about 9-1-1 emergency calls with reenactments of the medical emergency involved, and the heroic response of the paramedics and/or firefighters involved. Often there were reunions of the dispatcher, paramedics, and patients on the show. It was very cheesy and sentimental, but, boy did Melissa love that show!
When she got older Melissa thought she might like to be a paramedic as well, but she wasn't sure. Most paramedics were men. She wanted to go to university, but you couldn't study paramedicine at university. She wasn't sure it was the job for her. So, she studied a few other things, travelled a bit, and tried to decide on a career that would be satisfactory. When she was 19 she took an industrial first aid course to boost her resume for summer jobs, and because it looked fascinating. When she was 21 she got a summer job as a first aid attendant, and she got hooked. 'THIS is what I want to do for a job,' she said. So, she applied to become a paramedic.
Once she was hired, the ambulance service offered to train her more, and she jumped at the chance to learn more fun life saving stuff! Then, she had a baby. So she had to drop out of the training they offered her. It was sad, but her baby was definately worth it!
Three years later they offered to train her again! She jumped at the chance again! And a long year and a half after beginning, and hundreds of hours of studying and practising and lectures and exams she finally, finally finished. A tiny bubble of an idea that started when she was eight was now a reality. And boy, was it FUN!

Thursday, May 17, 2007

I PASSED!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

THANK YOU for your comments and prayers, and for the help this week. I passed my exams!! Woohoo! 60-70% of people who do these exams fail them and have to come back and do them again, they're THAT hard. I passed!! All the hard work paid off, all the prayers helped (I felt quite calm once I arrived, which I KNOW was Jesus!), and I made it. 8 exhausting hours. What a day. NOW I am a real, live paramedic, not just a pretending one like I was before. Phone me up! I can save your life now! WOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOHOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!
XOXOXOXOXOXOXOXOXOXOXOXO to life right now!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Arrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr

My exam is tomorrow @ 8 a.m. sharp and I'm in a constant state of extreme panic. Arrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr!

Tuesday, May 15, 2007

Surprise Sleep Solution

Those of you who know me well know that I'm pretty relaxed about where my kids sleep. I like the idea of co-sleeping, especially when your babies are young and you have to get up in the night several times, or when they are older if they need the extra touch. I still always tried to get the boys to start in their beds and nap in their beds so they would eventually shift into all night in their own room and their own bed. That said, I also think this does not work for everyone, nor has it always worked for me. If it is not working, it is time for a change, and all habits can be changed with a little work and attention. Anyways, Ayden has always spent SOME time in our bed; this past year it was only the last hour or so of the night and he was rarely a problem.
Of course, Matthew had always slept on his own in his own crib before we adopted him, and he is a fantastic sleeper and rarely wakes in the night. That made me feel guilty because here Ayden is in our bed and Matthew isn't. Then Matthew started waking at anywhere from 4:00 to 6:30 a.m. and roaming the house--and eating anything he happened to come accross, or putting balls in the toilet, etc. I was at my wit's end because he would wake up without letting us know he had woken so I couldn't even try to supervise him! I (I would say we, but let's face it people, Brent sleeps like a log and isn't even aware anything happens in the world between midnight and 7:30 a.m.) tried several solutions and finally hit one that worked: I put a nightlight in our room and left our door open and presto! we had another bed buddy. Guilt resolved! Extra cuddle time! Hooray!
Only it started to get a little crowded. And Matthew has allergies, so he breathes very loud while sleeping, and sometimes snores. So it wasn't working after a few months so we had to make a change. I didn't know what, exactly, to do about the morning roaming or how to convince Ayden it was time to stay in his bed ALL night...At around the same time (a few weeks ago) we decided to put the boys together in the same room, mainly because they kept requesting to sleep together. I took a few days shuffling furniture around and finding a configuration that worked, and then we gave it a try.
First night, no night visitors. Next night, no night visitors. THIRD NIGHT IN A ROW, no night visitors!!! Wow, cool. They don't seem to keep each other up at bedtime and they both stay in their beds until 7:30 or so. Who knew? All they needed was to bunk together. And now I don't have to feel guilty about anything. :) Bonus: we have our bed back. Ahhhh....(until the next baby comes along, that is).

Monday, May 14, 2007

Beautiful Day

We took a trek to the park today because the weather is so nice! Matthew walked all the way there, approx 3/4 of a km, and all the way back with no complaints. This was our first official long outing without the stroller, which was nice except for the part where we had to carry all our stuff again! I brought the sling in case Matthew pooped out but he didn't need it at all. Great outing!

Here are the boys just before we left, being goofy:


On our way we passed a grove of trees which had dandelions in full fluff mode, which Ayden and Matthew call 'wishes.' We spent five or ten minutes making wishes and spreading fluff.


Here is Matthew at the park


This one is a little dark but I couldn't resist because it is very characteristic of Matthew the jokester. Ayden refused his picture being taken after the very first one so that is why this post stars Matthew:


I hope everyone gets a chance to enjoy part of this beautiful day!!

The Third Hurdle

As most of you know I have been going to school to upgrade my paramedic license for over a year now. Classes have finished, I passed my final exams, and completed my clinical precepting days. My final hurdle in this impossibly long race is an EMA Licensing exam which is this Thursday. I'm so stressed about this exam it is rediculous. It is an eight hour practical and oral exam, and definately without passing it my career would suffer, though I try not to think about that!! I'm just hoping to get through this week without getting crabby with the kids; it is not their fault I'm in school! Well, I can see the light at the end of this school tunnel and soon will leave it all behind!! Thanks for all your support & prayers & thoughts!!

Saturday, May 12, 2007

Tricked the Kiddies

Ha ha! I just wanted to mention how crafty I was...the kids @ the birthday party were so excited to have junk food! Little did they know the pineapple, cantaloupe, and melon are all healthy, the hot dogs were soy dogs, and the hot dog buns were whole wheat. Only the cake was junky! Even that was homemade so pretty okay--the frosting had preservatives, but the rest was okay. Oh yes, and we had popcorn but it had no butter or salt so that was healthy too! So crafty.

Ayden's Birthday Party

Wow! What a fun birthday!! Luckily the sun was out today so the birthday events included outdoor activities! Ayden had a great time, as did his 7 friends and 1 brother...We experimented with our first "drop your kids off" party this year, and it was a great success. All the kids had a blast so the wildly disastrous house and the frazzled parents were worth it! :)
Here are some photos of the highlights:

I'm FOUR!


and I'm TWO!


Tiger cake courtesy of mommy & requested by the birthday boy


Look at the slug!!


PWESENTS!!


Ayden got a siamese fighting fish as a gift--he named him "Flaffy," v. cute


Happy birthday!


Cake time!

Thursday, May 10, 2007

Four year old farting fun

Ayden and I just spent ten minutes coming up with wacky adjectives to describe farts...though the way we were saying them is adverbish...I don't know which to classify them as, though I should, but we had a giggly blast:
"Sometimes farts are stinky"
"And sometimes farts are yucky"
"Sometimes farts are trucky"
"Sometimes farts are bird feedery"
"Sometimes farts are barbequey"
"Sometimes farts are skyey"
"Sometimes farts are shredded wheaty"
"Sometimes farts are watery" (this one made me laugh big)
"Sometimes farts are leafy"
"Sometimes farts are microwavey"
"Sometimes farts are picnic tabley"
"Sometimes farts are bushy...ouwwwwwww, mommy, that would hurt!"

Wednesday, May 9, 2007

One More Peepoo

Matthew has added another "Peepoo" to his vocabulary: Peek a boo. That is officially FIVE meanings for the word 'peepoo!'

Tuesday, May 8, 2007

Happy 4th Birthday, Ayden!!

Today is Ayden's 4th birthday. Wow! Four years already! This time four years ago I was lying on my side in a bed waiting for OR time. One more hour and Ayden was born! Today being a weekday we reserved this Saturday for kids' party time, but we have been trying to make this day extra special for Ayden, and will be going out for dinner tonight. I'll add photos of the dinner after we get back. Here are some of the activities we have done today:

Ready to travel to the park! Ayden got to choose which park to go to in honour of being the birthday boy! Ayden is showing how old he is with his fingers.




Playing at McCloughan Park





On the way home from the park we stopped by the corner store and got popsicles, always a great hit!! "Mommy, it looks like Mafew is bleeding!" "It looks like you're bleeding too!"



The sandbox! Hours of fun, and some time for mommy to make lunch...there are rules, though; one of which is that Matthew is not allowed to actually sit IN the sandbox, and all of Matthew's actions must be approved by his highness, Royal Ayden. Luckily Matthew is so happy to play in sand that he doesn't care about having to follow Ayden's rules.




After all that running around, guess who crawled into his bed and had an uncharacteristic snooze?



In our family we have a tradition of taking a photo of the birthday boy at the exact time he was born. Here is Ayden at 4:39pm today, exactly 4 years after he was born!




Swimming lessons!



Here we are at supper at the Spaghetti Factory, requested specially by Ayden




Happy birthday to the sweetest 4 year old I know. XOXOXOXOXO!

Sunday, May 6, 2007

Sheattle fest

Yesterday The Bads (Torie, Sam, & Bennett) and we (Melissa, Brent, Ayden, and Matthew) travelled to Seattle to visit the Sawchenkos (Jen & Andrey). It was another mini fest: three families out of six! We had a great time! I forgot our camera but hopefully Torie or Jen will email me pix of our day and I can post some. We went to a park that sits by the ocean for a few hours; the kids had a blast on the playground and Matthew was in 7th heaven when a train whistled by just before we left the beach. We then stopped by for mexican groceries and cooked up a big mess of fajitas-yummy!! It was great to see our friends for another mini fest in Seattle (the nerds have evolved Seattle into Sheattle: the title is not a typo). As ever, Matthew's presence confounded the border guards and we spent some time in immigration on the US side, as well as 45 minutes in line for the border. But 20 minutes of lineups, questions, and $6 later we were back in our (borrowed--the van is on the fritz!) car on our way to Sheattle fest. On the way home the Canadian border guard asked us "Is he adopted?" and I just about laughed at him (are you dumb?), but Brent later explained that one of the first things border guards are trained is "make no assumptions" and Brent should know because he spent a summer as a border guard and every time we cross the border he has many stories to tell of his stint as an enforcer. Some of the stories are repeated every time we cross. ;)
Matthew is now eligible for Canadian citizenship but we just have not had the time to get our papers in gear and mail them off! I guess we should get on that so crossing the border isn't such a hassle anymore, plus we can then change his legal name from Thanawuth Luangpotha to Matthew Thanawuth Smith Vose.
We also stopped at Carter's and bought Matthew a replacement security blanket, since his other one is getting raggedy and smelly (he sucks on it to sooth himself to sleep). His 'old' security blanket is the second one he has had; he brought a lovely yellow one home from Thailand with him but sucked the life out of it. I washed it every day near the end and wanted to save it for him in a box with his baby stuff so we bought him several new blankets (which we call 'Bee'--Matthew's version of 'blanket') but he didn't like two of the replacements and wasn't happy until we found the second Bee. Bee #2 is now biting the dust, so a replacement Bee was in order. Bee #3 is quite nice; he seems to prefer Carter's all the way. How can a baby know the difference between brands? But it is true; all other brands have been rejected and all 3 Bees have been Carters' Bees.
On the way home from Sheattle fest both boys yelled and shreiked until our ears rang and I pulled out the portable DVD player. How did parents survive long trips before the portable DVD player?!?!?!! Then they demanded gum until they fell asleep at 9:00pm, Matthew happily intertwined with his new Bee and Ayden anxiously rubbing my thumbnail for 15 minutes. Ayden's version of a Bee is to rub the thumbnail of his proximal parent until he relaxes; recently he has discovered that he can also rub his OWN thumbnail when anxious or tired which takes the pressure off us! Kids are so funny!
Three cheers for the Nerds! Missed you, those Nerds who were absent! xoxo

Friday, May 4, 2007

Birthmoms again

Someone emailed me this week regarding "Birthmothers Day" and I thought it was pretty neat, so I thought I would share it with you:

Mother’s Day is a long time celebrated tradition. Have you heard of Birth Mother’s Day? Birth Mother's Day is not well known or recognized by society. It is celebrated on the eve of the Mother's Day. It was started by a group of ladies; from Seattle Washington in 1990. Their purpose was to educate society of the importance of birth mothers and to also honor and recognize their significant role.

This particular day was chosen to symbolize the fact that the birth mother is the adopted child’s “First Mother”. She is the one whose blood nourished the child by way of the umbilical cord that joined him to his life source, his “First Mother”. Her very existence is forever connected and intertwined as an integral part of her child’s being.



These women have trusted another mother to complete the process of nurturing and caring for their child. To be a mother is to love, nurture and care for a child. The roles of mothers in adoption are indeed very different as they relate to child’s life, but both are equally valid.



Any woman who has given birth and is not parenting her child knows the reality that Mother’s Day can be one of the most painful days of the year, second only to the birthday of the child she is not raising. For most birth mothers, Mother’s day comes and goes with no cards or flowers; often not acknowledged by those who hold their precious gifts of life.

To quote from Rita Laws' Definitions of Four Adoption Terms, Real parent: any parent who is not imaginary. Adopted children have two very “real” mothers. Two different mothers, two different kinds of love!



However we choose to honor birthmothers in our world, let’s all remember the important thing is that they also be honored and celebrated as "mothers".

Peepoo

As I've mentioned before, Matthew says "Peepoo, peepoo!" when he needs to use the potty (regardless of whether he needs to pee or to poo). Well, a funny spinoff of this is that he uses the word "poo" for poop, food, can I get through, and I have boogies (aka I need a kleenex). Well, we have taught him to say please when he asks for something, and when he says please it sounds like "pee!" Hence, when he says "Pee poo!" we have to run the gamut of "Do you need to pee? Do you want some food? Do you want to get through? Do you have boogies?" Every time. Of course, sometimes there are gestures to go with the peepoo, so it is easy to guess which one is which, but most times there are no gestures. Too cute!

Tuesday, May 1, 2007

Paysh?

Matthew has a very cute quirk. When he wants to go to the bathroom, he usually tells me (or Brent) "Peepoo! Peepoo!" while dancing around anxiously. Then he wants you to rush over with him, watch him get ready and sit down, and then he looks at you like 'why are you still here?' and asks, "Paysh? Paysh? Mommy, paysh." He's asking for me to give him some space. As in, privacy. Very very cute!