Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Done and Done!

So with no taxes looming, obviously there is not much that I can think of that is blog worthy.


I finished chem 30 Monday night

And I got a 96 overall.

Yep - feeling pretty good.

Although, I have to admit - that 4% is really, SERIOUSLY, bugging me.

The parts that I AM happy about:

  • It is such a transition from when I took it in high school and failed.  I would never go to class and would regularly skip unit tests.  I have now learned that it is kinda helpful to attend AND write tests in an attempt to get good grades.
  • It was a challenge.  Not only was the class hard on my unused brain, but also finding time to study with the kids
  • Two times a week, I would walk out the door, Paul put the kids to bed and I could think of something other than diapers, dinner preparations and cleaning.  One night - after a particularly exasperating day, Paul asked if I wanted to go to class - I was shocked at how vehemently I responded YES!  It was seriously fantastic to walk out the door to do something that I genuinely enjoyed.  (As I was rewriting my notes one day with my brightly coloured pen collection, Paul came into the office, saw what I was doing and said, "Nerd it up, Poindexter.  Nerd it up!"  I did, do, and love it.
  • One day I went and was sitting beside my friend Brittany.  She is 18 and young and cute and trying to get into dental hygiene.  I looked down, looked at her and realized we were wearing EXACTLY the same outfit!  I commented to her how awesome she must feel wearing the exact same outfit as a 32 yr old mom of 4!!  I am sure she was super pumped!!!
  • I can finally graduate from high school!  Class of 2009 BABY!!!  I was short 2 credits and, even though I could write Alberta Education a letter and get the 2 credits from "life experience" - I just always thought that was LAME.  So, this was always the plan - to get chem 30 and graduate.  It only took me 14 years to do it.  As a side note, I did go to university (- haven't quite finished that either... noticing a pattern yet?  Hello, ADD!) and at this rate will be 147 when I graduate from univeristy, but hey.  Long term goals.)
  • IT WAS FREE!!  Thank you Saskatchewan tax payers!!!
But it is done. And I am mostly happy.  And I may or may not ever get over that 4%.

Now on to Physics 30 in Jan!

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

What's in your pockets?

At my class today, my teacher asked if someone in the class had a dime.  Since I neglected to bring my wallet, I emptied my pockets to see if I had one stashed somewhere.

From my pockets, I pulled out:

  • one spool of white thread
  • 2 screws
  • a piece of lego
  • a bobby pin
  • Canadian Tire money
  • An air inflator pin
  • an iPod
  • Lincoln's tooth (in a baggy so you are not TOO grossed out (top front that he just lost yesterday)
  • A Toonie from the tooth fairy, that somehow ended up back in my pocket.
No dime.  But I was pretty sure that being a mom made my pocket contents the most interesting in the class...

Now I super curious - does every mom have random stuff in their pockets at the end of the day?  What are in your pockets right now?  If you feel like leaving a comment about this - it would make my day.  I really want to know!

Saturday, November 14, 2009

Just Because This Brought Me So Much Joy...

These are the proofs for Oliver's school pictures this year...

He said, "I was trying to smile, but my face wouldn't let me!"

I have never loved a picture more, nor has one made me laugh so hard.

Thank you Oli - you made my day.

You can click on it to see all of its full glory...

Wednesday, November 11, 2009


Man, I am the worst at updates.  As requested, here is some more info...

California was awesome and... no earthquakes.  Wicked.  The shoot was super fun. but I am not sure when/if they will use the footage.  They do it with 4 different people every 6 weeks and so get an overload of material.  At first I was a little bummed that it might not be used - like maybe it was an indicator that they weren't thrilled with what I said. And what about my friends whom I had told about the shoot, and then... no Maja.  I wouldn't want anyone to think I had LIED!  And then, I realized, all that was the ca-RAZY talking, and in the end if they didn't use it, I still got a fantastic free trip to California with my sweet Hubs and Chubs (aka Saskatoon Fats, McChub...  Ezra) AND I don't have to be on tv talking ABOUT MY ACNE.  Turns out, I am perfectly ok with option #2.

Photos of the shoot:

At the Getty with the cute boys...  (Just as an FYI - Ezra really was the star of the shoot - they ATE up the chubbiness)

Now on to Lincoln - he is getting BETTER!!!!  I really started to notice a difference when I got home from church on Sunday.  And then on Monday - it was like he was himself again.  He got dressed!!!!  For the first time in 10 days!!!!  AND said he was "really hungry and sick and tired of fasting..."  haha!   I was over the moon with relief and so, so grateful that he was getting better.  I kept hugging him all day and yelling - You are getting BETTER!!  I am so HAPPY!

And then, as I was walking out of my house to an exam, Lincoln said he was super itchy.  So I checked him out and the poor kid was covered in HIVES!  I mean head to toe, can't stop scratching welt-y looking nastiness.  I went from utter elation of having him improve so dramatically to despair that he was allergic to the antibiotic that was saving his life.  It was all I could do to not sob.  I was more upset at the sight of those things than going to the hospital in an ambulance.  At that point I was still in ignorance to the gravity of the situation, but now I was fully aware of the seriousness.  And he couldn't take the drug anymore.

And I was going to class to write an EXAM.

Every question I read my head spun thinking of Lincoln.  Do I take him back to the ER?  Walk-in?  How does Le Chatellier's principle apply to...?  How can I phone the health line, ER, family friends who are doctors from here?  What is the concentrations of products and reactants at equilibrium?  Is this as big a deal as I am making it out to be in my head???

I could hardly read my eyes were so blurred from tears.

Finally I finished and got a hold of our friend Kevin, who is nearing the end of his residency in family med and calmed my super over reactive fears.  He said Lincoln wasn't likely allergic, and I should continue on with the treatment.

What a stress though.  I did as Kevin told me, and sure enough - there has been nothing more.  And he keeps getting better; and more and more bored at being at home.  He really could go back tomorrow, but I will likely keep him home until Monday just to be on the safe side.

So there - updated!!  Thanks again for all your prayers, well wishes and support.  It meant a lot to me to know so many people cared.

(And an update on the exam... I got 96%.) 

Friday, November 6, 2009


This is what I am doing instead of my taxes.  Which really need to be done, and I REALLY don't want to do.  We'll see how many posts I do before I finish them...  (this is post 4 in less than 24 hours.  Good grief.)

TLC's 18 Kids and Counting

I have a new favourite show on tv that I LOVE -  TLC's 18 Kids and Counting!!!  It is on my PVR, and I record all episodes, new and old.  When it starts, I start smiling, and the goofy grin stays on my face THE ENTIRE TIME I watch it.  To be honest, it is hard for me to explain why I love it so much, but I am going to try because I think it is so good that everybody should watch it.  (Once you get over that fact that the dad's name is Jim-Bob and the initial shock to the cheesiness-  you get used to it and then start to enjoy it.  And I mean, really love it!)

  1. It does not have extra-ordinarily beautiful people on it, but they are extra-ordinary people which makes them beautiful.
  2. It is not the funniest show on tv (30 Rock holds that title), but, like I said earlier - I am smiling the entire time it is on.
  3. There is no drama, astounding wit or intense situation.  Unless you count living with 21 people.  That would be a lot of drama for me.
  4. It is the only show on tv that I can think of that they talk about God.  They talk about their beliefs, and you see it in action.  I love that they can talk about God.  He has become so taboo that the only time you hear His name on tv now, it is taken in vain.  So this is such a great change.
  5. It seriously inspires me.  There are so many things that I see, and think, Yeah.  I want to do that. For example, I try so hard to never yell anymore because they don't yell at their kids.  Ever.  Did I mention there are 18 of them?  And they are not all over the age of 20.  They have little ones, Lincoln, Oliver, Charlotte, and Ezra's age - plus probably a couple more in the same age span.  And no yelling.  They explained it one show that they want to show by example how the kids need to learn to respond.  Love that.  But I am, by nature, a Neilson.  And Neilson's are LOUD (Happy loud, mad loud, excited loud...  My nana used to tell me "Soft and classy, not loud and Brassy."  Now I tell that to Charlotte and it has come full circle.  She is ALL Neilson - a mini Maja in fact.)  Anyway - back to the Duggar's...
  6. They homeschool.  I went down that crazy road last year and it only lasted a month, but I keep holding it in my heart that maybe I will do it again.  (And as a side note - for all intents and purposes I am doing again, simply because Lincoln will be missing at least a month's worth of school due to this nasty virus.)  I love that she does it though.  LOVE it.  The kids are so happy and the environment is so protected.  And by the the time they get old enough to be out in the world, they make good decisions because that is how they have been taught.
  7. They teach modesty to the kids.  They don't let the boys see immodesty in others and if someone is approaching who is dressed inappropriately, they say the Code Word "Nike" and the boys drop their eyes.  The girls are covered and modest and don't think anything of it.  They want people to focus on their faces, not their bodies.  While extreme, it sure makes a lot of sense.
  8. They all work hard, play hard and are live providently.  Does that even make sense?  I feel as though they are what most LDS people strive to be.  
  9. They are good, righteous, wholesome people who make me want to be better.  And I see how they live and think, "they are living the gospel better than me!!"  I need to work on that!!  (And no, they are not LDS, but holy cow they should be!)  But it is awesome to feel that way after WATCHING A TV SHOW. The ironic thing is they don't watch tv.  At all.  I think they have a 10" screen with rabbit ears that they dig out of the closet to watch if the parents are being interviewed. So many things for me to work on...
OK - so I said it would be hard to explain...  Maybe not so much seeing I could still go on and on. But don't take my word for it -check it out Tues. night on TLC (the Learning Channel).  It is so nice to see something so GOOD on tv and I want to support that kind of television.  Not just by watching it, but also by telling other people about it.  

Family Pics

You have seen a preview of some pics that were taken By Chantelle Slocombe - but here are the rest.  She is so good and I am thrilled with them!  I am hoping that there is an awesome one of everyone that is still going to come...  (just as an FYI - the last family pics we had done, I was pregnant with Charlotte, so we were a little overdue for some new ones!!)

Paul and Me 
(yes, that grammar is correct - I think...)




Oli - Boli or Bolsifer
(or Small-iver, but he doesn't like that one too much)

(Chuck - but mostly she gets MAD when you call her anything but Charlotte)

The Ezi-nator

The Group

Thursday, November 5, 2009

More About Linc

I do have other children, I swear.  But it seems like most of my blogs are about sweet, sweet Linc.  He really is that sweet though and this is another post dedicated to my first born, the apple of my eye.

As some of you have heard Lincoln has been SO SICK.  For 8 days, he has had a high fever, sore throat, cough, severe body aches, and has generally felt like complete and utter garbage.  As he put it, he said "I am so sick, I feel like I might die..."  Ohhh... my poor buddy!

So I have been the ever diligent mom.  Stopping what I was doing to give him a cuddle if he needed it, popsicles if he wanted, medicine, back rubs - pretty much anything that turned his fancy he got.  He would say so often, "Mom, thank you for being so good to me while I have been sick.  I promise, when I feel better, I will make you breakfast in bed."

Man that kid - you see why I melt a little.

Back to Linc.  So he has had a cough since last Wed. (and yes, I am certain he has H1N1 and no, he has not officially been tested), but since Sunday it has become a more persistant cough.  And he had complained a couple times that it was hard for him to breathe, and his heart rate and breathing was up.  Not thinking too much of it, I tried my best to make him comfortable.  It continued, and finally Wed. night I thought I would finally take him into the walk-in clinic.  He didn't want to be there after waiting for 1 hour, and told me again that it was hard to breathe, and that all he wanted to do was go home and go to sleep.  He was even crying!  I felt so bad for him, that I went to tell the desk clerk that was having a hard time breathing and this moved him up the line.  After 20 more minutes of agonizing wait, we finally got in to see the Doctor.  He listened to his chest, and sent him immediately over for a chest x-ray.    When we got back about 10 minutes later, he ran in from seeing the x-ray with an oxygen tank and pulse -oxygen meter.  He measured Lincoln and he was at an 84 which apparently is NOT good.  He phoned an ambulance, and told us that Lincoln needed to be at the ER where he could be properly helped.  I was in SHOCK.  Lincoln just had a cough!  Ok, he did have H1N1, but this guy was saying that he now had pneumonia, that part of his lung collapsed and that he had seen kids with higher levels of O2 crash, respiratory distress...


So - off we go in the ambulance.  Wheeled out of the clinic on a stretcher.  With masks on.  It was so surreal, I could hardly even register that it was that serious, let alone real. Although when they took his pulse-oxygen in the ambulance it was in the 70's - so it helped re-focus me as to what was really going on.  I tried not to think about that line from About a Boy that "while it was really serious to be driving behind an ambulance, driving that fast was fantastic..."  It was serious and scary and this was LINCOLN!  (But it was my first time in an ambulance, and maybe that part was a little cool. - )

After about 4 hours in the pediatric ER, and once his fever was controlled, his oxygen levels stabilized to 92 - enough to go home for the night.  We are on high alert though - if his conditions worsens at all, if he is not getting better in 48 hours, if he throws up his antibiotics we are to come back immediately.  He does have a secondary infection from ILI (influenza-like-illness officially) - pneumonia and part of his lung had collapsed.  Poor, poor, sweet Lincoln!  I felt terrible that I hadn't taken him in earlier.  That I had blown off his telling me "that it was hard to breathe" as just part of this flu.  When we got home, I held him and told him I was so sorry.  And promised not to blow it again.  (Not till next time anyway...)  This is my sweet boy, and it is crazy to realize how serious it was.  The walk-in doctor phoned today, asking how he was feeling and re-hashed the previous evenings events with me.  Today, he was even more upfront about how scared he was for Lincoln.  It had really, really scared him.  When I think about how Lincoln had been so tired in the waiting room, and that he had been begging to go home to go to bed, crying that he was so sick... it makes me sick to think about the possibilities.  And beyond grateful that I finally took him into the clinic when I did, and for doctors, and diagnostic equipment, and for vaccines so others won't have to go through this...

So it was pretty crazy and very scary.  But I hope now that he will get better quickly.  He is on some crazy antibiotics that make him gag, but hopefully he is on the mend.  Thanks to all of you who have called and for dinners.  We didn't need them, but it is so nice to be thought of.  Thank you, thank you, thank you.

Saturday, October 3, 2009

And Then There is Oli...

For those of you who made a comment on Sweet, Sweet Linc that perhaps the reason why Lincoln is such a sweet, tender boy is because I am his mother - I would like you to know that it is more likely that Lincoln is as sweet as he is DESPITE me, not BECAUSE of me.

For example:

At church on Sunday, Oliver came running up to me while I was still lingering and chatting in Relief Society.  He had his usual paraphernalia with him that he had done in primary that he was excited to show me.  Since Canadian Thanksgiving is looming (I assume this is the reason), the kids were asked to draw a picture of what they were thankful for.  I am sure there were children who drew lovely pictures of their families, or of healthy bodies, or some other lovely thing.

Oli told me proudly that he was "grateful for Zombies!"  Indeed - the two "people" in his picture had x's for eyes, and arms sticking straight out.  My child was the most grateful for the undead.

Yes, that was a proud parenting moment.

And I realized that it was because the night before I had introduced them to the music video Thriller and Lincoln, Oliver and Charlotte were working hard to master the epic dance moves of the late MJ.  

So all of you who thought I was a good mom now stand corrected; any inherent goodness in our kids is all because of Paul - his genes and his parenting.

But their moves...

they get that all from me.

Monday, September 28, 2009

Just a Mom...

I was at church yesterday when I had a conversation with a woman I didn't know very well. She is at a stage in her life where she is quite miserable, so this is by no means reflective of her, or her comment. But it is the generalization that warrants this post. Her question to me was:

"Are you just a mom, or do you do anything else?"

Just a mom????

Are you kidding me?

I have heard this question before, but this time it really hit home as to how truly one dimensional it is. I think she was wondering if I had a paid job that I did as well.

But Paul is in medical school - and I am quite sure, even though he also does not get paid, is never asked,

"Are you just a med student?"

I answered her with my tail feathers ruffled that I was far more than JUST a mom.

I am taking a class (and kicking butt and taking name in it), I am taking piano lessons, I am running, I have four children who need/demand/want me, a husband who I try to support with a happy home and few pressures (except for the deck - another story entirely), I babysit one day a week, I am in a book club, I am involved at Lincoln's school, I am active in my callings at church... Here I am justifying to the anonymous world of the internet that I am more than just a one dimensional person.

But as I write the things that I do and that occupy my time, I am realizing that if all I was was a mom - than I might be far better at it. It might mean that I was putting all of my very best possible effort into one of the most difficult and important jobs in the world. I am raising my children to be good citizens; happy responsible adults who love God, people and the world around them.

If that really was "all I did" wouldn't that be enough???

Friday, September 18, 2009

What an idiot...

When I check my blogroll to see who has posted, I always go to my own blog. Which means I am looking at my own blog every single day! And I have to be honest - how my blog looks drives me mental most of the time. I feel like I change the appearance of my blog on a weekly basis - almost more than I post. But I like being able to change it whenever I get sick of seeing the same old thing!

Now knowing this about myself, I really wonder why, at 16, I thought it was SUCH an awesome idea to GET A TATOO!!!!!!!!

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Growing Pains

My goals this semester are intense. I am expanding my mind and downsizing my body. And my report: It is painful!! The whole everything! My brain is not used to this business of sustained exertion, and for that matter, neither is my body. UGH. All good Ugh, but Ugh all the same.

Monday, September 14, 2009

Sweet, Sweet Linc

Lincoln is a very sweet boy. He is tender and thoughtful and wants to be a good boy. BUT he is OBSESSED with Lego. I mean obsessed. Since we no longer watch tv/computer games and only do one movie a week, this is how he fills his time. He makes very elaborate space ships, and space stations. He will spend quite some time working hard on a new design, and then give it to his brother to play with. He talks about what he is going to build next, shows me the features on the projects he is working on, takes them to bed with him... He LOVES lego. But, he feels he doesn't have ENOUGH lego. Paul and I are trying really hard to cut back on our spending, so we have talked about how Christmas is coming up and he should think about which set to ask Santa for. For about 2.5 weeks, it was almost out of control how desperate he was about getting more lego. He cried, begged, pleaded... he NEEDED more lego. FOR TWO AND A HLAF WEEKS! He was driving me crazy!!!! So we started doing an allowance. We have always had a chore chart where the kids are responsible for the number of chores as how old they are, but we weren't in a super routine and only really did it a couple times a week. Now, we told Lincoln that for every sticker he gets $0.10. He collects every Saturday. First, we take out tithing, then we divide the remaining into 2 jars; mission and spending. This really is a painfully slow way to get a lego set, but Paul and I feel like we need to teach them to save, to work hard, save for a mission... etc. So that is the plan. He has now been saving for a few weeks and feels like he is in control - and can buy that lego set when he works hard enough. (And more to the point, he no longer asks for more Lego.)

He came home today all on fire after learning about Terry Fox. "Mom, were you alive when Terry Fax ran partway across Canada?" Did you know he had a prosthetic and did it on one leg?" " When I grow up, I want to be just like Terry Fox" and then, (this is the part that gets me):

"Mom, in 2 weeks when we have the Terry Fox run, I want to give all my money to help the people who need prosthetics. I just want to dedicate my life to helping others."

Man, I love that little boy - even more than he loves his Lego.

Saturday, September 12, 2009

Happy New Years!

When September rolls around, I go from being really sad that summer is gone (and completely terrified that another Saskatchewan winter is upon us) - to utterly thrilled at the new year! Although I know it technically isn't a new year, it feels way more like it than January 1.

With that in mind, and thanks to an 8 hour drive home from Glenwood, I was able to plan, set some goals and get excited about the coming months.

1. Take piano lessons! I have started/stopped so many times I have lost count, but now I have Lincoln doing it with me so there is no stopping allowed. Since I am already threatening him within a inch of his life to practice, it is the least I can do. Really, the timing is perfect.

2. Take Chemistry 30 (grade 12 chem). Holy dinah this one scares the crap out of me! I never passed chem 30 in high school - but I like to think that it was because I NEVER went, missed a couple unit tests, etc; not because I COULDN'T do it. But now - all bets are off! What happens if I go to every class, do all my homework and actually write the tests... and still do poorly! That would be a disaster! So I am basically studying every night because my fear is all consuming. I read my notes while I am eating lunch, blow drying my hair, "watching" the kids on the tramp... This has resulted in my being the ultimate nerd in class. On the first night I thought 80% would be awesome. Then I heard how some people are gunning for a 90% to get into competitive programs. That really pushed me over the edge. Now I have to get 100%!!

3. Run 10 km in 60 min by the real New Year. That is a REALLY fast pace for me, since my current speed would rival the tortoise, with the endurance of the hare. NOT a great combo.

4. No tv for all of September. Paul and I can watch a movie once a week and the kids can pick a movie once a week. But nothing more. It has been more than a little weird. What? Else? Is? There????? Thankfully goal #2 is taking up some time, but wow. Have a little more free time now... You may see I post a little more often...!!!

Friday, September 11, 2009

Funny Pauly

Paul went to Walmart last night and brought me home some candy. He pulled out "17 Again" and yelled EYE candy!!! hahahahaha

EYE candy!

That guy makes me laugh.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Hello Hotness

I just saw "17 Again" and now have a cougar crush on Zac.

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Good times...

So pretty much everyone who knows me about The Flood (not the Noah's Ark version, but our very own Christmas Day surprise.) For such a small amount of water (about 3 inches) it did a surprising amount of damage. We have gone through all the stages: packing up the entire basement, the massive demolition (floors, walls and ceilings), building new walls, electricians, plumbers, drywallers, mudders, tapers, painters, more electricians, flooring guy, construction of massive quantities of Ikea (thanks to my dad for coming to our rescue), and finally - just when I was starting to feel like maybe I had a handle on it, all of our stuff that was in storage came back yesterday. ARGH!!!!!!!! This is the project that will never end! For those of you who remember the old me; you may know that once upon a time I was organized. I used to really be on top of my game. Now I went from the majors to little league... and I am at the bottom of my division!

But in the end, it will be dealt with. The boxes will be unpacked, the entertainment unit will have doors on it, the desk and office will be a nice space to work, the bathroom will be done, my house will finally be clean again... and when that happens it will end up being the best Christmas present ever. Until then though, it is just a MONSTER PAIN IN THE ...

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Quilt Giveaway

This is a beautiful quilt by a friend of mine. AMAZING! Love how talented she is! Quick - check it out before it closes tonight.

Monday, May 18, 2009

Whole Lotta Crazy...

So it is really no secret that I am a little nuts. Many of you would suggest that "little" isn't quite enough to aptly describe the Ku-Ku, but that is ok. For the most part, my crazy is funny - a quirky side of me that I am well aware of, but doesn't really affect my life. Enter my INSANE fear of earthquakes. I am wholly and completely terrified of them. There have been many days where I wake up and think, "I am so glad I live in SASKATCHEWAN because there is NO CHANCE of there ever being an earthquake here." (Such is the benefit of being completely land-locked in the middle of the prairies in Canada. Yup - no chance of an earthquake here! Ok - did you hear that crazy? I LOVE living in Saskatchewan because of no earthquakes??? Yeah - Yikes.)

To explain: when I was 14, my siblings and I were visiting my Nana and Opa in Palm Desert. It was AWESOME! We hung out at the pool everyday and it was the closest I have ever been in my life to having a tan. We were there for 3 weeks and I was in heaven. We saw Geckos and went shopping, went to Disneyland... I felt like we had truly had the "full" California experience. Then on a Wednesday before we were to leave, there was a tremor. It was only 4.1 - enough to give us a little shake and an even bigger thrill. It was AWESOME! WAY better than Disneyland! We had so much adrenaline and couldn't believe our luck at being able to tell all our friends that we were actually in a real earthquake. Then about an hour later, the mobile home started shaking with the fury of a deranged parent! Stuff was flying out of cupboards and the freezer and my bags were packed before it was over. It was 6.3 and we were only 5 miles from the epicenter AND San Andreas Fault. They believed this quake had a 25% chance of causing "The Big One". Umm.... hello? I wanted out of there!!!!!!! I had HAD it with California and vowed to never, ever cross the state border again.

Earthquakes became something I thought about from time to time. When the garage door opened in my parents house in Calgary I quietly freaked. As I did when a freight truck drove too fast down the street, Apparently there is a massive fault line in Utah and every time we visit family I am always aware; listening for crickets because that night in California was SILENT. I finally went back to California a couple summers ago with Paul and the kids and my Loco was just as fervent. I would think about earthquakes several hundred times a day, wondering "what would I do if I was in an earthquake right now?? What about now? And now? I would question the safety of the roads and buildings I was in... Are you getting the picture yet? Yup - TOTALLY nuts!!

Anyway - so this film shoot is in California. And I was actually doing ok about it; looking forward to it even. I focus about how fun it will be and how great it will be having some time with Paul. We were there for 3 weeks 2 summers ago, and we weren't in any earthquakes or tsunami's (don't get me started about those...), so it will be fine (and this is what I keep telling myself) AND THEN THERE WAS AN EARTHQUAKE IN L.A. LAST NIGHT.

That may have sealed the deal guys! I don't know that I need to tell my acne story that bad!

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Fun quiz - thanks Andrea!

You are most like:

You are Green

The feeling of spring follows you. Newness, surprise, beginnings and growth. Your fresh perspective gives others much to consider.


Take this quiz: Which Crayola Box of 8 Color Are You?

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

I Heart ProActiv

Funny things happen in my life and sometimes the weirdest things occur as a result.  The best example of it is an impending commercial I am going to be on.  Yes... I am going to be gracing the little screen with my presence and telling the story of my skin on a ProActiv commercial!  It all started on a late night whim when I saw an infomercial for ProActiv and I was hooked (as I often am with infomercials - they are just so convincing!).  When I finally got my order in the mail, I was so excited to start using it - I have had mediocre skin since my awkward teenage years and was so looking forward to promised perfection!!!  I read the entire information brochure in detail and was anxious to get started.  There was a part where it told you to take before and after pictures and write your story for some free product.  Since I am always up for "free" I took the required photos and started using the product.  Turned out I didn't need to use the "60 day money back guarantee" because I fell in love with it!!  So I mailed in my pictures, waited for my free product and thought nothing more of it.  Then I got a very random phone call from the people at ProActiv asking me to tell them more about my experience.  As I was still babysitting, I was thrilled for an adult convo and diversion, even if it was talking about my acne!  By the end of the conversation, Tamra said, "You have informercial written all over you and we would love to fly you to San Francisco to film you!"  

Stunned silence....


The commercial is set for July (my MIL Clare is going to watch the kids and can't do it until then) and Paul and I will fly down for a whole week of near childless bliss!  (I think Ezra, aka "Saskatoon Fats" will be crashing I mean joining us.)  Heaven thank ProActiv!!!! 

Now if only I could lose 30 lbs of  "having 4 babies chub"...

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Going Public

For a while I kept my blogging secret.  Not even my mom knew about it, and my mom knows about pretty much everything.  The Blog was called "Just for Laura" because she kept harassing me to start one.  Not too sure why... but I am glad she did.  I was extremely hesitant to start because I wanted it to be funny, well-written, darling, awesome pics of everyone and everything... basically perfect.  And since I knew logically that was NEVER going to happen, I didn't even want to start.  Enter Laura.  She is very good at persuading and promised she would never tell anyone else about my secret little blog.  (Yes, I see now how silly it was to think Blog on the INTERNET could be secret - haha.)  And that it would only be her reading it so it wouldn't matter if it wasn't perfect.  Made sense, right?  Why not!  True to her word, she didn't tell anyone.  But as I left comments on other people's blogs that I read, it would take them (me unknowing) to my ever imperfect blog.  (Stress level increasing, stress level increasing...  Deep breath... deep breath)  But I guess I kind of got over it (which I am certain Laura knew I would) and now am thrilled to have comments from friends about the silly things I think about.  Thanks for reading, your comments and now I would be happy if you come back, as long as you don't expect it to be perfect.

Take that Crazy!  I am so going to defeat you one day...!

Sleeping Angel

I am a huge proponent of "letting kids cry-it-out" when it comes to teaching babies how to sleep.  People know this about me and often will call for a pep-talk or how-to right before they attempt it with their own babies.  I KNOW that it is for the best.  The theory is that you are parenting and teaching them a lifelong skill.  It takes discipline and commitment and denying yourself from running into the room and scooping your precious infant in your arms to make his sadness go away.  You have to believe in what you are doing or you will absolutely fail and both you and babe will be MISERABLE!  

That being said, I dread 6 months.  And I dread it for the full 6 months.  For the first half  year of their lives, my kids have always slept with us; nursing at will at the all night diner.  I am perpetually exhausted for this duration.  But it doesn't usually bother me because I know that it is so short lived.  Then at 6 months, I let my beautiful baby cry.  Because if they get to the point where they can sit up on their own, it gets WAY worse.  

Ezra has had some issues with asthma and RSV.  I have put off letting him cry because I wasn't ready.  Besides, he is such a good baby - I couldn't bear to have him sad.  (Also the guilt of knowing full well that any bad sleep habits are exclusively my fault since I trained him that way since he was born.)

So I knew that time was fast approaching.  I realized the other day that Ezra was already 7 months old.  I was struggling getting him to sleep naps (at 20 lbs, he is WAY too big for the swing) and he no longer would nurse to sleep.  He never went to bed at night before 10:30 and he was starting to strain those abs trying to sit up.  I knew it was time and my heart sunk.

The first night I gave him an evening bath, and made sure to do a routine so he would learn to depend on cues that bedtime was coming.  I sang to him and cuddled him and nursed him and loved him.  Then I put his in his crib (yes the one he has hardly ever been in), turned out the light and walked out the door.

He cried for 5 minutes.  And then REALLY revved it up.  I was so sad and felt so awful.  After 20 minutes he volcano puked all over his clean bod, jammies, sheets.  So much for that!  We quickly re-bathed him and I brought him back into bed with us.  I felt awful, but I also knew that it would only get worse as he got older.  

The next night I tried again.  This time he cried for 7 minutes and was out cold.  A couple hours later he whimpered for about 30 seconds, and then proceeded to sleep through the NIGHT!  He woke up at 7:30 this morning cooing in his crib!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!  I could hardly believe it.  The longest he had gone without nursing (day or night) was 3 hours...!  Imagine my elation and how big the girls were (ok, don't imagine that...!).  Even with that success, I still worried about nap time.  I wanted him to be in the routine of night before I tried the day - but then how was I going to get him to sleep?!?!  So, fretfully, I nursed him, sang to him and laid him down fully awake and left the room.  A few minutes later after being distracted, I realized I hadn't heard a peep from him.  I went to check on him and sure enough - sound asleep.  

So it turns out Ezra is super star and I had nothing to worry about.  Not that I would have done it any earlier though... l wouldn't change the first 7 months of snuggling for anything.  But I am just so relieved and grateful that now that he is bigger and needs to learn how to sleep on his own (since I couldn't do it for him anymore) that it was such an easy transition.  Yeah for letting them cry and bigger yeah that he didn't really have to!!!!!!

Wednesday, April 1, 2009


This is what Paul found when he got out of the shower this morning.  After telling him for the last few days that I wasn't feeling well, and was super tired, and after his insisting that I take a pregnancy test... I finally got this out this morning.  (BTW - 2 lines = POSITIVE.)

Paul called me in and said, "Have you seen this?? Me "Why?"
Paul - lifting the pregnancy test for me to see...
Me - "Oh My Gosh."
Paul - (Laughing, shaking his head) "Holy Crap, Is this for real?  I can't believe it.  What are we going to do?  We are so done!"
Me - "There is no way... But how could it be wrong?"
Paul - "I have no idea what to say..."

Me - "Well - I can only think of one...  April Fools!"  

Hahaha.  I wanted to let him think it all day, but he has a big exam on Friday that he really needs to be able to focus on.  So ladies, get a pregnancy test from the dollar store while you are pregnant, take it, and keep it in the wrapper until a future date when you want to mess with your husband's head...  Guaranteed good time!!  

It was fun to see what he would say though.  When my brother Stefan, found out his wife JoDee was pregnant with their 5th (the oldest, twins, were 7) he didn't speak to her for 3 months!  Thankfully Paul was a little better at receiving unexpected news.

Monday, March 16, 2009

Oh the Heaven

So I am in Heaven.  I don't know if you have ever tried Skor Bites, but they are OH-SO-GOOD!!!!  I had a slight addiction with them and may or may not have needed a 12 step program, but then I couldn't find them anymore.  Anywhere.  It was always on my grocery list and just moved on to the next list, week after week.  I finally thought about contacting Hershey to find out why they were always sold out and it turned out they stopped making them.  I felt so strongly about them that I decided to write them a letter imploring them to bless the world with delicious nuggets again.  This was several months ago.  I was so sad!!!  The world no longer had the perfect treat!  I truly mourned them.  Then the other day, I walked into Walmart.  And there they were, like a beacon, shrouded in the glow of luminescent light.  I hurried over and proceeded to EMPTY THE BOX (maybe they only had one box they found in the back, underneath a mattress so I wasn't going to take any chances.)  For the rest of my trip in the store, I walked around with the biggest, goofiest grin on my face.  Honestly, anyone who looked at me cocked their head in wonder - probably as to what I was up to.  It was all I could do to not tell everyone I saw "They are BACK!!".  Thank you Hershey for making my world a happier, (albeit fatter) place.  

*NB - The Skor Bites that I came with are now gone... and I went back to buy some more, but alas - they are SOLD OUT AGAIN!  When you see them, buy many, many bags  - you will be so glad you started your "year supply" with these amazing treats, although if you are anything like me, they won't last until next week...

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Fickle, fickle girl

So if you haven't seen Charlotte lately, (or at all) she is a mini, mini me.  Seriously.  She looks exactly like me and fortunately/unfortunately we also have the same personalities.  Add to it the fact that she is 2 and you can guess how well we get along most days.  Lately, I have decided that I am not going to butt heads with her any more - but look for ways I can say yes (without losing the top-dog status - but make her think she has a say)!  So this has been going on for a few weeks and I am thrilled to report that I no longer want to sell her!  Instead of screaming at me today, she told me (randomly) "I love you Mommy.  You are my best friend!"  (Hallelujah choruses in the background...)  I am shocked and warmed and loved and over the moon!  I have figured her out!!!!  Tonight, as she was getting ready for bed I wanted to "review" so as to not forget my new status.  I was giving her a cuddle and loves and said, "who is your best friend, Charlotte?"  She chirped right up and said "Kiah - not you Mommy, and she is not your friend.  She's mine."  


Saturday, March 7, 2009

$100 bet

So my family is doing this $100 no sugar thing.  You can't eat any sugar or you have to put in $100 to give to the winner.  Sadly, after 5 days I was out because I TOTALLY forgot and licked a lollipop!!  A LOLLIPOP!!!  So not worth it.  GRRRR!  What can you do?  I have post-baby brain and CANNOT be trusted to not forget something.  (OK - that may have been a double negative, but who's counting...)  Anyway the bet has now evolved into reading scriptures daily, working out for 30 min 4x a week and saying your prayers.  So I am thinking Paul and I are going to do it - and make it separate.  $100 for no sugar, $100 for the other stuff.  While I am at it though - I am thinking that I want to make $100 for a lot of different things.  Like making dinner every night for a month.  It would be WAY cheaper to give me a $100 reward at the end of the month than to order pizza once a week and better for us...!  And laundry.  I think that should start costing $10 a load... to stay on top of it.  And while I had the dayhome, I paid a cleaning lady to come in 2 x a month - does that mean now that I am doing her job, I can get paid for it too??  Man at the end of this I am going to be making BUCKS DELUXE!  

Genes and Weird Science

Out of the kids in my family, as far as looks go, we mostly all got my dad's genes.  Four out of the 5 kids have blue eyes (dad), again 4 out of 5 got thin, mostly useless hair (thanks again, dad); we all have a "Neilson" look that makes it fairly easy to tell we are siblings.  Nothing obvious from my mom's side, except we all have her hair line.  At the top sides of our foreheads, it gets really, really thin.  Like baby hair that never grew out.  While I was looking in the mirror today, I noticed I am starting to get a few grays in that area.  But unfortunately the option of plucking is not there since it would look like male pattern baldness instead of just gray.  Bald or gray?  Can't say I like my options!  Couldn't I get her thick, gorgeous hair instead of the hairline??  Wouldn't it be awesome if you could just order your genes old school style like Weird Science and just scan all the elements you want into the computer!  Sign me up!

Thursday, January 29, 2009


So little Ezra has been sick.  Sicker than he has ever been (ok, it is the first time he has been sick) and he acts like he has discovered that it isn't just a land of boobs and tickles, but that it is a cruel, cruel world.  Poor babe!!!  As I have been nursing him through it, I have been grateful for the antibodies he is getting through me and hoping beyond hope that it would pass quickly.  The problem with antibodies, I am discovering, is that you have to have them to pass them on.  Enter sick Mommy.  Because No One should have to be sick alone.  And Charlotte, who loves to kiss and sing about an inch from his face now coughs like a seal.  Without covering her mouth.  It is only a matter of time now for the rest of them.  So it turns out I am on the same page as Ezra - it is a cruel, cruel world, but I know it will be back to happy times soon enough.  Until then, I am going to bed!

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

The Rink that Saved Winter

Paul put a rink in the back yard.  BTW - our house is still a DISASTER from the flood, and while I wanted him to do the rink, what I wanted more was the house clean.  But in an effort to be a non-bossy wife (something I am working on), he did what he wanted and I kept my mouth clamped.  While it was flooding, I was secretly FREAKING out!  While you are recovering from a flood, do you flood another area ???  The water was running for FOUR hours!  That is a lot of water pooling perilously close to our house.  Then I worried about the ice being bumpy - it was snowing while he was doing it.  If we were going to do this, I wanted to make sure the kids could at least use it...  Every 10 minutes, I would ask how it was going (so cas), insisting "we" go look at it - feigning super excitement, masking my fear like a pro.  It was ridiculously cold, and so it only took a day for it to freeze completely.  And NOW, we have the BEST RINK EVER in our back yard!!  I love Paul for making it a priority and doing it regardless of the house.  It gets the kids outside while I CLEAN (even better), and they are loving learning how to skate.  It is so tempting for me to wait to have fun until I do something (usually involving cleaning).  But that showed me the error of my ways.  I even went out there with my skates for some winter fun and it turns out that I love winter in Saskatoon.  YEAH FOR PAUL!!