Thursday, December 29, 2011


I was able to take a walk today. It's been since Christmas eve and I'm missing them terribly. I am seriously thinking my kids would be fine for 30-45 minutes in the afternoon so I can keep them up!!

Christmas was "leisurely" as one of my friends put it after I filled her in on all our comings and goings and that word really captures it. We had lots of places to be, but only one per day. Leisurely.

Here are some long-awaited daily walk pictures:

Thursday, December 22, 2011


It's really Christmas week?  Three days before Christmas?

Currently it's a balmy 30*, the sun is shining, I wore a vest and sweatshirt on my walk today and there is zero snow on the ground or in the forecast. Weird.

Yes, I finally got out for a walk today, I planned my break well, but I didnt plan for the kids to be home and me not to be able to get out! Dang. Luckily my sister in law is in town, and the kids wanted to visit their cousins, and grandma was willing to watch the kids while we went on a walk. No pictures today, sorry, I know you're bummed, but I was talking the whole time! You know, with an adult.
About something other than "how were the kids today" and "can you believe that person we just had on the phone?" so I was a little preoccupied. The walk was nice though, along the canal near my in-law's house. I should try to walk the canal more often, its very pretty, and quiet. And it goes on for miles!

Tuesday, December 20, 2011


Santa's workshop was busy wrapping today. We still have a wee bit of shopping to do for the kids (like their "main/big" present) but otherwise I think we're done, and if they don't get a "big" gift its no big deal, they are getting plenty of other stuff.

It's such a struggle tho. What to get them, why to get it for them, is it about how much we spend or is it about getting them something they want or getting them something they need or .... Sometimes I wish it was more of a "you'll get what you need and you'll be thankful" kind of atmosphere. Where we didn't always just get them what they want because we can, but made them wait until Christmas or their birthday or until they helped earn it. You know? Maybe that could be a goal for 2012, make 'em wait. Ha! There's my 2012 Theme "Make 'Em Wait".  Hmmmm.

I will say since we have started to budget and talk more about the things we are buying and how we are spending our monies and including the kids in some of those conversations their wants have gone down considerably and instead of saying "I want XYZ" they actually ask for it which is very refreshing.
But, do you know what I mean? The stories our parents or grandparents tell about having to wait until Christmas for new shoes or socks. Having to wait until the crop was sold before they could get a new hat? (Most of us) have it so good. So easy. You want it, go get it. You need it, buy two just in case. Wait? HA! Why wait?  I've actually experienced some waiting this past year. Come to find out, I'm not good at it! I waited for a new phone (and I got that early because My Honey couldn't stand my whining) and right now I am waiting for new jeans. Have I mentioned how I have ruined two pair in the past few months? A few less trips to the snack box at work will fix that, but I don't like to wait for good food to cook in the microwave. Wait. So I am waiting until Christmas, I put jeans (with blingy pockets) on my list.
One 12 hour shift then off till next week.

Monday, December 19, 2011


Whew! Now if I can just make it through Christmas.

We went to a family Christmas party on Saturday afternoon, a visit from step-family Saturday evening and had family spending the night Saturday night so it was a party-filled day. Sunday I expected more overnight guests, but a head-cold kept them home (sure missed you) but it worked out pretty good because an ear infection and secondary bacterial infection in her eyes is keeping Hannah down and out for today. Bring on the antibiotics.

The rest of this week is FULL. We have a tad bit more Christmas shopping to do. I have a short overtime shift on Tuesday and a 12 hour shift on Wednesday (and then I am off until next Tuesday yay!), we have a Christmas program to go to for the kids' church-thing Thursday night and, of course Christmas Eve and Christmas Day family activities; our family gift exchange, the in-laws gift exchange, my mom's gift exchange and a Christmas open house at my sister in laws. I'm kind of looking forward to having Thursday and Friday off to just be. It's my intention to get all the Christmas shopping done tomorrow and work on wrapping on .... Wednesday night? Yeah, that seems right, then I can kick-back on Thursday and Friday.

Unfortunately the kids are out of school, which is nice, but I'm not sure how to work in a walk each day. I did get some fresh air today tho when I went with Bubba and Grandpa to shoot his new .22.  I might have tried out several pistols and a .22 rifle too. It was pretty fun, I think we'll probably have to add an "ammo" line item to our budget.

Friday, December 16, 2011

Yay! A walk today

Now if I can just get dinner cooked!

Friday practice

We had a small crowd this morning which meant we didn't have much wait time in the lines for our drills which means we did a lot of skating!

Coach worked our back hand today, which might be like switch-hitting in baseball. It works the weak side. Makes your brain work a lot. I actually tried to turn my stick around to play it off the easy side, my forehand.

The challenge is the curve of the stick. When we are on our forehand the stick curves around the puck, on our backhand it is opposite so it takes a little more finesse and paying attention

My partner for the passing drills was one of our new players (whose name I know) so we were pretty evenly matched which was really nice. We passed for a long time, backhand to backhand, to get comfortable with it. Then did a skating drill where we ran the puck up the boards, evaded "the opposing team" (buckets) by hitting the puck into the boards off our backhand then passing it to the coach, he passes it back to us and then we hit it off the boards again and then we attempted a shot. It was a really good drill and used everything we learned, not only that it went fast since there were so few of us and we got to go through it a lot of times. Then we changed sides and did it off our forehand. Good stuff.

Great start to a fun-filled weekend.

Thursday, December 15, 2011


Well, boo. No walk yesterday because the cable guy was fixing something. No walk today because I work until 3 and then have to get the kids. Biggest boo? It's sunny today.

So, here is a picture of my knitting. I'm getting pretty good at...... Squares. Impressive huh?

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Awesomeness. - insert rolling eyes -

Friday is going to be the Best. Day. Ever. Or not.

Bubba is struggling with reading at school. Only that isn't really fair to say, he can read, he just isn't interested in reading what the school wants him to read.  Our school district uses a program called accelerated reader to track student reading. Books are categorized by points and kids are required to take a test on each book they read. They are awarded points based on their test scores. Points are tracked, there is a (very low) goal for each student and at the end of the term they get a reward. That's the short story.

The long story involves story-type books that my son is not interested in and tests that are 10 (ten, yes only TEN) questions each that he takes and barely passes so he doesn't get the full point value of the quiz. Here we are, 2 days before the end of the term, and he is about 4 points shy of the MINIMUM (and we're talking bare minimum) of points. Not to mention the tears and frustration and anger and out-and-out pissed-off-ness of the past few weeks. Currently he's not allowed to shoot his new .22 he just got for his birthday, play with the neighbors, or watch TV because he has to read, read, read, read, read. It's not a pleasant atmosphere around these parts. Problem is, its all too familiar.

You were waiting for that weren't you? He's a mini-me academically. And it pains me. I DON'T want him to go through school like I did, not caring and doing just enough to get by unless I was really interested in the subject. I DON'T want to ground him all the time for under-performing because that shit didn't work on me. It didn't motivate me, it pissed me off and I just found a way around it (enter step-dad.) I will say we are handling his restriction different, if he gets the points he is good to go, he's not grounded until the end of the grading period, just until he gets the points. Anyway, its killing me a little.

So, Friday the kids who have met the minimum point requirement are going on a field trip to the ice rink to skate. The thing Bubba is totally into right now is skating and he's not gonna be able to go. (See, I'm tearing up thinking about it.) He will get to stay behind at school and read. It's gonna be so hard to drop him off in the morning. But I can't keep him home, its not the right thing to do.

Damn, parenthood sucks sometimes.

Girls rule, boys drool

Monday night league was a lot of fun! It was all about playing. I liked putting the stuff I've learned together.

We had 10 on our team and decided to play drop-in style, which may be similar to a pick-up game of basketball; someone comes off the ice, yells a position and you skate out for that spot. It was a little unnerving since I don't play defense very often, and I've never played center, but it was all good practice.

The league is open to women and novice men. The coordinator thought she was short a few players so we had a few guys that were not novice playing too. I thought it was a really good mix. And I was really comfortable since half my team was ladies I play with on a regular basis.

Im not sure which team won. We didn't keep score (well, I didn't) but I will tell you I took several shots (and missed) and, the highlight of my night? I knocked one of those not-so-novice men down! It wasn't intentional, I think our feet and sticks got all tangled up, but still, everyone cheered because he went down and I was left standing and laughing!

Good times. I'm looking forward to lots more.

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

On my walk

It's also crunch time at school. Bubba has to get some books read and some tests taken by Friday. I had to run his book to him today so I thought "why not walk it down to him?"

Here is what I saw:

Party time

From My Honeys work party Sunday night.

Monday, December 12, 2011

2011 Holiday Chaos

And so it has begun. Technically in November with Hannah's birthday, but now the "something every night and/or weekend" begins.

Friday night we had an extra kid for Bubba's birthday, went out to dinner and all that. Saturday we shipped the kids off for some quiet time, which equaled Christmas shopping, dinner and a late show. Good thing we had pre-purchased the tickets or we might have gone home early and went to bed. Sunday was a work Christmas party and so that ends the weekend.

This week we have something damn-near every night. Monday I go play some hockey with the women's league... Oh yes I did. I signed up for a women's league! It should give me some great game-play time with others way better than me! Tuesday is all kinds of busy, ice skating lessons for the kids, out to dinner then quick to the school for Bubba's winter program, then home quick to drop off the kids with grandma and then off to My Honey's pool league.  Wednesday the kids have a church activity. Thursday we kick back and Friday we start a weekend of family. And then we're into winter break. I'm trying to pace myself today and tomorrow getting ready for the family-bit. I have laundry and some cleaning to do and I'm debating a walk today since the sun is shining for the first time in a week. Seems worth it, but I know hockey will kick my butt tonite and I don't want to be totally broke for tomorrow .... but a little walk around the block wouldn't kill me, would it?

Sunday, December 11, 2011

Walk on the wild side

We drove up to Mission Ridge today for a walk. The kids were away so the adults went to play. We took the dog too she had a good time with her canine friend.

The air quality is about five thousand percent better up there and we even had some snow flurries. Back to the air quality: wow. Fresh. Icy. Clean. So nice. I can see myself going back up there for more.

Saturday, December 10, 2011

Saturday walk

I needed some celery for a soup so I walked to Safeway! Brrrrrrr it was 23* I think and a grey morning. I'm already tired of the grey and we are just beginning.

We had a little birthday party for Bubba at DQ last night and he receives his new .22 rifle from grandpa and dad. He was pretty thrilled. They have plans to go shooting tomorrow.

Friday, December 09, 2011

Friday hockey

What a practice today! Good stuff. We started with some fast laps around the rink, a little breather while the coach gave us directions for the next drill.

My favorite was zig-zagging through the cones up the boards to the blue line, round the top cone, pass the puck to the player in the corner, zig-zag across the blue line, round the end puck, receive the pass back, run it to the net and take a shot. So much good stuff in that one drill. The cones simulate opposing players, rounding the cones worked on our tight turns, sending and receiving passes - essential! And of course taking a shot. We can't practice that too much!!

Now if I can figure out how to deal with the aches in my hip flexors.... Hurts so good.

Thursday, December 08, 2011


Brrrrr! Chilly today, but I did it and I was rewarded with a peek of sunshine.

Wednesday, December 07, 2011

On my walk today... Duh

Just ten degrees makes such a difference! 34* is much more bearable. I'm lucky to live where I can take a walk right after work this time of year and lucky to get done at 1:00 most days - although, the getting up at 2 am is totally killing me. I can't wait to be done with this shittin-ass shift in January. So. Ready.

In other news I m ready to give my children to a needy family for Christmas. I know I shouldn't joke like that when there are families who would give their right arm, left knee and their entire life savings for a chance at a kid, but I am sick-sick-sick of fighting with them right now. Everything is MY fault. NOTHING is fair. And I "didn't do it s/he did" is making me nuts right now.

These walks are god for working out the kinks before they get home!

I also found a new app for editing my photos. I have been using instagram and today I tried camera plus or some such thing.

Tuesday, December 06, 2011

On my walk today

Yeah. Not so clever with the post titles am I?

It was a balmy 23* today. Still okay for a sweatshirt, vest and hat. Everything was a little washed out since it was kind if a foggy overcast morning.

Monday, December 05, 2011

Morning walk

It was a wee bit chilly on my walk today, 27*. I did it tho. Here is a bit of what caught my eye.

Saturday, December 03, 2011

On my walk today

Nice up hill walk today. I saw the empty canal and then a rose. Both had seen better days. The other picture is of an imprint of a leaf on the ground.

Friday, December 02, 2011

A little Friday hockey

Practice this morning was a blast! We did a few one-on-one drills which was really fun and such useful stuff for games. For some reason I spent a fair amount of time on the ice (as in on my butt). Maybe my skates are dull. Maybe I was working really hard. Or maybe it was a dork-day. I will never know. But aside from all that it was a really great practice!

I worked with one of our youngest but really good skaters. She took it easy on me but pushed me just enough. I never felt like she was trying to out play me - which she most certainly can- and she has a real gentle spirit. Just what I needed today.

Our drills were great and so interactive with each other. Learning to take away the puck without getting a penalty, having someone skate alongside or behind you trying to get the puck. A lot of passing and a tad bit of shooting.

So how come I spent so much time on my ass? I really think my skates are a bit dull so I turned them in to get them sharpened and I think i was trying some new stuff, or trying to improve on what I can do so I was distracted, by learning and trying new stuff.

All in all I am not disappointed with practice at all. Not at all. AND let me tell you something else I have learned; I have learned that it's never gonna be right (perfect) the first time. I have realized how much practice really matters and that if you just stick with something you might actually kind of by accident get better or maybe even good at it.

On my walk today

A little wood. Some from an orchard pruning some from a raspberry patch.

Had a great hockey practice today, too. Good stuff I will post about it later.

Thursday, December 01, 2011

This guy (gal?) was very friendly.

On my walk I thought about:
How good it is to get some fresh air, I really need to make it a focus every day. Not just the walk from my car into work!
Work - blah, work.
My kids - oh they were trouble yesterday. Thankfully My Honey rescued me!
The dog - she is in heat, she didn't get to go on the walk today
Music - Nickelback has a new album out. Some of the lyrics make me giggle in an AC/DC kind of way
Orcharding - I'm not sure how to explain my connection to the trees around here, but there is one
My new phone - anyone know how I can upload photos onto my blog without having to connect it to the computer? (iPhone 4s)
Taking more pictures - I read something the other day about photography, how it can sometimes reveal something about you or whats going on inside .... These photos don't really speak much to me, or about me. They weren't actually what I would have photographed with my "good" camera; I would have taken a picture of the whole orchard and the bits that are being pruned. I would have taken a picture of the whole horse. And maybe a house.
Welcome, December. I am glad you arrived with mild temperatures.

Monday, November 21, 2011

Good Times

Hannah's birthday was great.

McDonald's is so the way to go!
That mess? - Not it!!!
A few things went ignored since there were TOYS, but all in all, a great party :)

Sunday, November 20, 2011


Strange, were we there at the same time?

I went to a musical on Saturday afternoon with my sister and all our kids because our niece was in it. Way to go Madi, she was a shining star - the one with the biggest, brightest smile. I think that girl loves to be on the stage.

What a fabulous production! Just enough going on all the time to keep all the kids involved, way, way talented kids, super great orchestra. I enjoyed myself a lot! But yes, weird to be at the school on a Saturday and not for detention ;)

I did think, as I was entering my alma mater, of things that had gone on during my HS years. Things that had transpired on those very steps over 20 years ago. The musical I was in over 20 years ago. The people I had known, the crap of HS. But more I was thinking of the kid that recently drown.

I had a really shitty work day last week. One of my calls was an office staff person at the HS saying they needed an ambulance. All she knew is that they "pulled someone from the bottom of the swimming pool." The whole room stills when a call like that is being dispatched. I think we are all in a state of hopefulness that it isn't as bad as it sounds, and the ones who pray, pray. I asked her to have someone go to the pool area and call us back so we knew exactly what we had. She called back and I happened to answer the phone again, this time she was shaken. "They're doing CPR, get someone here fast!"

The patient turned out to be a 14 year old boy. He had drown. He didn't make it. There are a lot of elements to this call that I ... well, they're just interesting, I guess. It's a small community here, everyone knows someone who was somehow involved or goes to the school or works at the school. Not only that, it reminds me of losing one of our classmates. My heart goes out to the family and his friends. The students that found him, the teacher that was in charge. The administration. Everyone. The lady I sent to the pool who never would have seen what she saw if I hadn't asked. I can't undo anything I did, and I wouldn't do it any different next time, but it still sucks. It's gonna hang around me for awhile.

On the total flip side tho, we have had a great weekend. Busy. Very busy, but great! Cupcake day at school on Friday, LK coming over Friday night. Fresh snow to play in on Saturday, the musical on Saturday afternoon, 50/50 ticket sales at the hockey game on Saturday night, going out with my sisters later and we are getting ready to head to McDonald's for Hannah's birthday party now. Whew, oh and one more thing, tickets to see Ron White tonite! THAT I am excited for!!

Thursday, November 17, 2011

From the week/end

It wasn't in time for my birthday, but we got our first snow yesterday. I'm not quite ready for it yet. BUT, maybe I will get my snow shoes and cross country skis ready just in case.

Oh yeah! That's what I was talking about. Jell-o shots in a variety of flavored vodkas.
Lemon with whipped cream vodka was my favorite.
(Yes, that is an entire cooler of them)

Sunday, November 13, 2011


What a great weekend!
Friday started with work (boo) but it was an alright day. Friday afternoon I picked up the kids from Grandmas -- That's not really what you want to hear about is it? How about some HOCKEY?

Friday I went to work at 3am (yeah, I know that sounds early, but hey, only 6 more weeks!!) to find my new JERSEYS!!! With my name on them!! I was so excited! One red, one white. I put one on to wear around for the day. I couldn't help myself. Silly, I know, but that's what all the jocks did in high school on a game day so I figured I could too. :) I actually ended up putting on a different Banshee shirt I had. Still, its game day, gotta support the team, right?

Our first game was at 7:30 Friday night.  Several of us were there around 7:00 to get ready. Let me tell you, the energy level in the locker room was HIGH. Several gals were saying how they had been stressed all day. I wasn't stressed so much as high-strung, excited. So excited!! Especially since I had a JERSEY! With my name on it!! We talked, changed, laughed and did some jello-shots! Gotta love my team!! Our coach came in and made position assignments; for the first game I was playing wing.

We had 12 gals on our team (which is a lot) so we had three wing-pairs and two defense pairs plus one set of centers. Lets see, to explain what that means - We play with 5 on the ice, two wing, two defense and a center. Every couple minutes we switch out. Usually there are two sets of each, wings, defense and centers, but for the tournament, due to the number of players we had three wing sets so we sat out an extra shift. Not a big deal, but it can make for a long wait. But it was so much fun! AND -- AND?? -- AND!!! I made a goal. Re-read that, wait, I will just re-type it - I. MADE. A. GOAL!!!!Seriously, no one was more surprised than I was that the puck went into the net! It never should have, but did and I will take the stat!

During the second period, I came flying down the ice, I really don't remember how I ended up with the puck but that's not the part that matters, and all of a sudden I was within shooting range, and the ice was wide open. I'm pretty sure I heard someone yell "take a shot" or "shoot it" or maybe I just thought "what the hell" it doesn't really matter, I just did it - because you miss 100% of the shots you don't take, right? The damn puck hit the pipes and then it bounced in. I could not believe it. I'm pretty sure the goalie was shocked too. But it was a goal and it was scored, unassisted, by me. Little ol' me. I'm still in a bit of shock. My coach (the one who has pestered me to play for so many years) was sooooo excited! That made it fun too.  We ended up losing the game, but, as it turns out, I scored half of our points for the whole tournament.

Saturday morning's game was at 9:15, I played defense which was new and weird and we tied 0-0. Our last game was at 4:30 and we lost that one too. It was a hard fought game though, I feel like we really rose to the level of the opposing team. I did attempt a couple shots, and got in the way of a couple and totally missed a wide open opportunity to dump one in. That will stay with me for a long time. The puck was "in the crease" (the blue half-circle right in front of the net) I was right there, RIGHT. FRICKING. THERE. and failed getting it in the net. Oh the pain. And another time I was in the wrong place, the puck hit my feet and failed to get in the net. Oh the misery. I really felt bad about that one, I saw it coming and didn't even think to jump. Man, oh, man.

My Honey was at all three games so he was good to talk to after and re-hash the good and the bad. I need to work on being less afraid. Apparently I have speed. I can go fast, but I get afraid and slow down way too soon. Me, speed? Fast? Huh. The kids and some work friends were there for my goal-game. Some other friends were there for the last game. Good times.

And weaved throughout the whole thing was my birthday. It was on Saturday so it was a fun day. It started with breakfast in bed, then the game, then out to lunch, a little nap, another game and then we dropped the kids off at the grandparents and had ourselves a little date night. We went to the arena and watched the really good teams play. That was fun, I have so far to go!

I'm sure I will think of a ton more stuff, but that's all I have for now. Super great weekend! Super. Great.

Friday, November 11, 2011

It's a hockey weekend!
My hockey weekend!

I play tonite and two games on Saturday and I'm pretty excited about the whole thing. I even got my jerseys with my name and number on them (70). The other girls worked on our jello shots last night so that will help un-fray my nerves. I've actually told some people when I'm playing. My dad and his wife will be here. And some friends from work. And.... I'm a little nervous.

But I have a jersey.
With my name on it!
It's gonna be a great weekend!

Monday, November 07, 2011

My girl, my kids

My Girl DW has done it again. Captured perfect images of my kiddles:

Thats pretty much him

Thats pretty much "them"

This is pretty much her!
Many thanks to her :)
You're mahvelous Darling.
As always

Monday, October 31, 2011


From the parks

To the flora, fauna

And the orchards

It is as beautiful here in Fall as it is in Spring