Thursday, March 29, 2007

Note to self

*when one takes their dear child to water babies, and said parent wears their suit to the pool under their clothes to save time, it is always best to put underwear in the bag with the towel, and child's change of clothes.

Who knew?

So much for running an errand after swimming, what with the girls swinging free?!

My water baby

I love the water. I love swimming, I love paddling sports, surfing is tough but fun (I think I have only managed to stand on a long board for a few moments before I toppled over with a smile plastered across my face), the only thing about water I am not good at is water skiing. The ability to get up on those damn skis escapes me. Scuba diving, skin diving, just hanging out in the water - I am there. Walking near the water, staring at water, mesmerized by water. I was always the first kid in the pool, and the last one to come out, often hours later wrinkled upon beyond that of a prune.

When you become a parent, you discover many of your biases, again and again. I don't want Brandon to be afraid of the water, or not know how to swim. So, I have been eagerly awaiting when we would start Water Babies at the local aquatic centre.

We started on Tuesday, and this morning is adventure #2. Brandon took to water like a fish (yay!). It was also the first time we have been around a lot of other kids. We have friends with kids, and a few babies, but we were with 8 or 9 other babies and parents. It was cool. Amazing to see the range of sizes and tempraments. Funny that the babies were all really good in the water, but to my endless amusement, there was a toddler in another lesson that cried and whined and quivered through the whole experience. I hope Brandon doesn't have meltdowns like that at the pool - this is why we are starting early to hopefully avoid that find of fear!

It was a learning experience, being truly responsible for someone else in an "event" setting, not just the safety of our house and those we care about it (not sure if I have articulated this well). I didn't know the whole routine, and thank you Nej for that bag of spare diapers, because I didn't know about the Lil'Swimmers, but they sure do the trick! And then there is the showing up with your suit on and just getting rid of that extra step right from the get go. I also carried Brandon in his sling, and threw a backpack on, struggling and wiggling all the way in. Made changing interesting - laying towels down to keep him clean, standing next to him to make sure he didn't roll of of the bench, a lot of juggling and josseling, and it seemed the other parents were able to get out a lot quicker than us newbies.

This time around I will bring Brandon in his stroller - it didn't occur to me that it would be the ultimate mom-saver trying to change, and change your child even if you are in a family change room. Tuesday was interesting as I juggled him trying to get my bra on. I am giving him a few moments to sleep since we were up relatively early (for us, not the rest of the known world) and then away we go!

Sunday, March 25, 2007

A whole year.

Last night we celebrated our first anniversary of making it legal.

Where has the last year gone? I may have mentioned previously but I think we have pretty much reinvented most things about ourselves in the last months. We've got a baby! We have newer cars (and we have 2 of them), we painted our living room, and we upgraded our pots and pans! And this is just scratching the surface of the changes, but essentially our core has stayed the same, just the window decorations have evolved. There is also just more of us now.

I got a little spoiled for our anniversary with a few surprise hours at a spa and I now have happy toes painted a rich and sparkly burgundy. We went for dinner at the revolving restaurant in Vancouver. I didn't know where we were going, although I did know we were going to use one of our coupons (which always makes me happy, I am so wired in to using coupons to save money right now). I have never been here before - for all the years I seemed to be in Vancouver more than my little town in the burbs where I grew up, I never really did go to a lot of fancy, or even nice restaurants. Pubs suited my budget in those years.

I would actually recommend this restaurant for visitors, for romance, for something breath taking. The views were amazing, and like our wedding, the rains finally ceased and the skies opened up, showing the blue sky and rewarding us with a sunset. It felt strange to be childless, and it was nice to be all swanky in nice clothes, eating good food, and just reveling in each other's company. I know I am waxinb poetic, but it is the first time we have been out for a nice dinner since before Bubs, so it was a big deal, we were also celebrating us, which was also pretty cool.
I even held off calling home and talking to my mom about Brandon until we were in the car on the way home!!!!

Saturday, March 17, 2007

an excuse for a guinness

According to an Irish bloke.. today is amateur day for the folks who figure they know what beers to reach for and have a good time. I think today is a lot more fun than New Years - there is so much less riding on it, you get to wear green (always a bonus), and there are lots of festivals going on which include some great music. One of my favourite bands is playing tonight and I have nothing but fond memories of bouncing up on and down on the floor at the Commodore, outdoor concerts, and the many many other venues where I have had the opportunity to see them live, and finally, the last time, with my man. Not in the cards to go tonight (Brandon is still too young to go out for that long, and well, they are sold out), and next year we will catch the parade.

I see a guinness in my near future - slainte!

Friday, March 16, 2007

Thank You.

My whining about good reads and chick-lit paid! I have garnered some great recommendations of books to read from some fabulous ladies. THANK YOU. I can't wait to dig my teeth in to these!

It has been yet another quick week, and the highs have overpowered the lows. There are always moments in your life where you wish you could trade shoes with someone else, but I love that saying - "when life hands you lemons, make margaritas" (errrr, I think that was lemonade but I am improvising.. not that I am going to touch the hard stuff until I am done with b'feeding, but I look forward to some fruity or tangy margs when the time is right). Attitude is everything and I figure that every one is entitled to their moments, some longer than others, but there reaches a point where you just have to get over life, and realize that life is life and you gotta roll with the punches or sink in the storm.

Felt like a complete widiot the other day, grabbed the set of car keys without a house key on it. So, off I went grocery shopping for dinner, did some banking, went home and couldn't get in. No folks upstairs, baby that was getting fussy, oh yeah, I was batting a 1000. Drove myself back up the hill to call my DH, and he laughed at me. Hard and long. I had to laugh too, it was a pretty widiot move on my part. A snap decision was made for me to head back down the hill, grab some dessert, and then meet back at home. Passed each other on the hill, and then I ended up in the longest drive through wait of 3 cars I have experienced in a long time. I would have turned around if I wasn't boxed in - that was when Brandon decided that he was done with being in the car and started to wail. Up went my window as I tried what I could to soothe him and get moving again.

Today I had a fabulous outting with a dear friend (whom has her own little bump) and it was such a high - it was like the mutual admiration society. I wonder if the changes I see in her, you could see in me when I was 24 weeks along. Watching someone you love blossom in to a mother is a gift.

And, we got great news about our boy. Last week things didn't look so good in terms of his shunt, however, with the miracles of science and a programmable shunt, a few hours can change everything and with this weeks follow up appointment we are in a completely different place than we were last week. Brandon is doing awesome. Some days he isn't the best sleeper, some days he isn't as smiley as others, but all in all, he humbles me. He has such a great nature (and I am not just biased) I am sure that I am learning as much from him as he is from me. I am sure that as a result of being a mom, I am becoming an even better person. There are so many moments that touch my heart. And when I talk about it, and reflect upon it, as being 1/2 of a couple and now that we are parents, we are a team and we look out for each other, and our own. Damn cool to be able to do that. Can you believe we will have been married a year next weeek?? Where has the time gone?

Wednesday, March 14, 2007

Polar Opposites

Lucky for me, I ended up with a few new books (which is rare, since I normally buy used ones or hope that books get paid forward to me as I pay books forward, or I grab loaners from friends) in the last few weeks. I was pretty excited since I had grabbed books that I really wanted to read, rather than books that appeared to "fit the reading bill" and time would tell once I dove between the covers.

Well, the books ended up at opposite ends of the sprectrum. I started with this book by the dynamic duo Preston and Child, and it was a fast paced page turner that kept me on the edge of my perpetual seat. It was a great book/read. I like their writing style, and I also think that it is cool that Preston's brother was the one that wrote the Hot Zone, a non-fiction book that I must admit scared the hell out of me (and then some). Actually both books to differing degrees reminded me of how much we live in a world of trust, social contract, and faith. You really have to believe that most people out there have their own best interests at heart, which by extension means that they are trying to create as little negative waves as possible because of the potential to have a rippling negative effect on their lives reflected back on them.

Then I picked up back to back novels by the next writing combination of Michael Slade, one of which was a book about the second world war in Europe, and the other was a different take on the war in the Pacific. I found the first one riveting, but a harder one to read. Back in my university days I did a course on the Holocaust and it was a chilling, bone numbing experience of just how dark human nature can be. This book reminded me of some of that, but to be aware of the darkness is also to be aware of the lightness of the human soul as well (witnessed by books such as this, which is still one of the most inspiring novels I have ever read). All of the Slade books are dark, but very well researched and very well written. They also take off from a base here in BC, and it is always a thrill to recognize your home town(s) in novels.

In between these two thrillers, I figured that I would dive between the covers of a chick-lit book. I had picked up Bushnell's Four Blondes at a great steal. I thought that after such an intense few novels, something light and fluffy was in order. I could not have been more wrong. I am sure that this is not the quintessential good chick-lit example, but it is complete and utter trash. Even at 5 bucks I think I got ripped off, and it is even a hard cover. After reading the first short story (I am not much of a fan of a short story, the longer the better generally for me) I dropped the book in disgust and went for the second Slade book. Well, now that the rest of my new books have been read, I am trying to get the rest of my way through this one, especially since it really isn't that long. The terms vapid, shallow, pulp writing keep coming to mind. I am disappointed because I am a big fan of S'inthe City, but this is no where close to what I expected. Between this one, and the Sh0paholic (which also didn't do much for me) I can't say that I am a big fan of chick-lit at this point. I am more than willing to try out more if there are some good suggestions out there.

Personally, it was an awakening moment as I realized my own literary journey has taken a few more turns. When I was a kid I loved the Nancy Drews, the Black Stallions, then came all those harlequins and bodice rippers, then all of the literature that I read and continue to read in between the other stuff, and then just plain old romance, to modern day books, to the suspense, some law, some thriller, and crime novels that I am now attracted too. I've really enjoyed books like the Lovely Bones and the Secret Life of Bees, or the Red Tent... but I wouldn't classify those books as chick-lit... which right now I can't say is going to top my list of great reads (however I will keep an open mind since you really can't judge a book by its cover and you just have to try and figure it out and see if the shoe fits for your own reading style).

Saturday, March 3, 2007


Today is a fine looking saturday.

I booked a massage therapy appointment for first thing this morning, which was fabulous, and then treated myself to a starbuck$. Hung with my man and boy, Brandon went down for a nap without a fuss, cleaned the bathroom from top to bottom (oh the mundane stuff that makes life better) so it sparkles and even smells clean, and now I am frittering away a bit of time.

Later on, I get to try out curling for the first time. It is all I can do not to wear plaid, tuck a hip flask of rum in my pocket, put a ballcap on, get in our truck, and head out to throw some rocks. Wait, that sounds like what we are doing! Aside from playing hockey and seeming oblivious to the cold at times, I would say that this is a pretty quintessential Canuck thing to try at some point. Will be interesting to see how it goes. Then, to top things off we are off to watch Ken play hockey. Then perhaps, a beer. Sounds like some kind of hat trick if you ask me!