Saturday, January 21, 2012

Hitting the slopes

I am one proud mama yet again.  Owen has accomplished another first - skiing. 

The school has a ski club where they go to a local ski resort and ski for four weeks.  Lessons, rentals and transportation are included.  Owen wanted to try it, maybe because he likes watching the sport on TV or perhaps because he would get out of class for a few afternoons.  I wanted him to do it because as good Canadians, we have to embrace winter and participating in sports is a great way to do it.  Plus I could volunteer with the school and have some ski fun too.  He did very well!  His eyes shone with his accomplishment and he chattered on about it all the way home. 

The reason it was such as success was the awesome instructors and volunteers at Packenham.  This guy stayed with him for an hour and a half, full of patience and encouragement as he negotiated the skiing thing.  Wow!  There was lots of attention to detail from all the staff at the resort.  They understood his needs and worked with him.  That doesn't always happen with kids with special needs.  We are so lucky. 

Seeing the thrill in the eyes of your child as he conquers something new is priceless.

Friday, January 20, 2012

I Own The Library

Well, that may be a bit of an exaggeration.  I do seem to have paid the library enough that if it were in shares, I would be a major stakeholder.  Procrastination has its downside.  In this case, it is a big pile of fines thanks to overdue books and DVDs. 

I used to say that that I didn’t mind.  What’s a few bucks here and there for public literacy?  I’m a big believer in reading of all kinds for every age so taking the kids to the library has been something we’ve done almost weekly since they popped out of the womb.  We check out a stack of books, magazines, some DVDs and the odd Wii game and stagger home with our loot.   Now, if you know my kids, you can guarantee that at least some of the books will end up deep in the scary recesses of the under-bed-world. Yikes!  Maybe that novel will be put in a bag that is in a box that is in a cupboard in someone else’s house to be unearthed when they move.  So at some point there will be late fees.  Lots of late fees.  How much? Let’s see… my back of envelope calculations are 11 years times 52 weeks times and average of $3 per week of fees…  carry the stupidity…. equals…. about $1800.00!  Ack! 

Forever positive (dammit!) I have to factor in the up side to these expenses.  In the younger years my kids had endless hours of entertainment by patient librarians of story time programs and glittery crafts.  And I didn’t get sued over the toddler-dropping-the –video-almost –on-the-patron-below-through-the-stupid-gap-in-the-second-story-balcony incident.  (Handy hint – always carry a backpack for library projectiles while herding 3 year olds through the library.) So there is some value for the money.

Oh yeah, and my kids love the library.  They love books, even if they are not brilliant readers.  They love being curious and finding out about things in the library.  Going regularly has made them feel at home there.  So even if I am not an owner, I love being a part of the library family.


Monday, January 16, 2012

My dirty little secret


Some women have an obsession for shoes, jewellery  or dresses.  For me, it would appear I have a thing for socks.

This occurs to me as I scoop up the discarded foot coverings around my room and put on a FULL load of sock laundry.  Is this normal?  Um, don’t answer that. 

How could I have a full load of socks?!  Well, it’s January in Ottawa and it is cold.  I’m tall and my feet are big.  Apparently the blood is too lazy to circulate all the way down there and those dogs get icy.  So this is what typically happens: 

I’ll put on a black pair, only to find they are too thin.  Hmmm, maybe if I double up.  After wearing them for a half an hour those four socks go into the laundry and some striking thermal pair comes out.  Except that they have a hole in the bottom but I can’t find another pair so I wear them anyway, …for about  half an hour then get tired of feeling the floor through the hole and scrounge for another pair.  (I can’t toss the sock with a hole because those buggers were expensive and it will only take a couple of minutes to sew, if I ever get around to it).  Time to raid my husband’s stash.  Hmmm, too big and floppy.  He might be offended if I put them back unwashed.  Check under the bed.  Oh!  There’s that pair I thought I’d lost, or at least half of the pair …. dig, dig,  …  found it!  I’m set, until bedtime.  I must wear socks to bed through most of the winter but they have to be the right socks so that my feet are not too hot nor too chilly.  Sports socks usually do the trick, until about 2:00am when I am suddenly too warm and toss my socks off and fling them by the side of the bed.  Exhausting. 

Along with sock laundry comes sock matching.  I’m sure there is some mischievous god out there that loves to hide and separate socks.  A typical load of laundry will produce 3 pairs of socks and 15 unmatched ones.  Why?!!!  The solo foot coverings go into the “Poor Little Orphan Socks” box until I make my husband match them or my daughter raids the box and makes a family of sock puppets. 

By February, I start my countdown.  Only 120 days until sandal season. 

Sunday, January 1, 2012

Welcome 2012!

As usual, we ring in the New Year in a quiet and anti-climactic way.  I don't mind, actually.  Usually the holidays have been busy and someone is sick by the time the year wears out.  This year that would be DH with migraines and DD with a snotty cold.  So watching TV after eating a yummy meal with vino to match seems like a great way to wind down.  This year, Owen stayed up straight through to midnight.  He was determined to do it.  We watched Cars 2 and various sports highlights then he bounced around as the clock counted down to bad bands on TV.  We popped some champagne that we had stored for a while and it was flat.  Rather fitting for a lack-luster holiday really. 

So, forever optimistic, I am looking forward to a new year of more.  More effort in general on my part to steer things in the direction I want them to go instead of drifting with the tides.  I am easy going by nature but this leaves me living a random life of happenings.  I want to participate more, do more, be more, as they say.  I am disorganized enough that I haven't really thought through what this means as yet but procrastinating less may be a part of it.  Perhaps it will come to me as I drive on the great province road trip to see my folks tomorrow on my own with kids.

We kick started our new year's morning with some yummy muesli from a recipe by Michael Smith.  It was a variation of this one.  Of course I still needed a few cups of coffee to jump start the day, but still, I'd like to think it was more of a good start than usual. 

So, raising a healthy glass of water to a new year of more awesomeness to you all.  Cheers!  (We'll see how long this really lasts. Stay tuned for my next post on how failure is under-rated.)