Just went backstage tol say hi to Jim, Bob and Basil, pics when I get home after the show.... Blue Rodeo ROCKS! (i really hope someone other than herb and melissa know whatim talking about!)
Email on the go, sent by TELUS
I honestly cannot believe we first met Beach Ball, then known as Sprout, a year ago today..... I remember the first anniversary of Dumpling's arrival. It felt like a year. No more, no less. Beach Ball is a totally different story. On the one hand, it honestly feels like yesterday. Time just flew by. On the other hand, the girl that stands before me today is not the girl we met last year. she has come SUCH a long way....
She was so scared. Screaming her heart out, so very very fearful of what was to come. She was OK with me at first but very soon came to resent me. She didn't want anything to do with me. All those nights in the hotel in China, poor hubs had to carry around this huge bundle of nerves and tears. She wouldn't let me touch her. But as long as I stayed away, she was actually a happy child. She loved the bath from the get-go. Even tried to drown Dumpling in her exuberance to play in the water!
She hated our house. Could not wrap her head around the designated rooms: a room for eating, a room for sleeping, a room for playing.... she has spent her entire life in the same 4 walls. We had to do some major adjustments to ease her into her new life.... But adjust she did! Did she ever!
From not speaking a sound to learning words, she's now stringing 4 or 5 together and makes herself understood. My new favorite is "Mommy pick-up me (s)kook!" But pick-up is a 3 syllable word, with an eh sound in the middle... too cute! Today, with the speech therapist, she had to ask "what's in the bag?" It was like a toddler game-show host! "Whaaaaaat's in the bag?"
The thing about Beach Ball that cannot go without mentioning is the absolute cheer joy she radiates. She is always happy. OK, not always. But we have been living with Little Miss Broody for 4 years, so BB's sunny disposition is such a joy to be around. She's so very funny. She's a total jokester.
She is also such a loving little girl. The hugs and the kisses are non-stop. "Love too" is the current way she says I love you. She must say it 25 times a day. Out of no-where, for no reason: "Mommy, love too!"
Of course, an anniversary post wouldn't be complete without mentioning the eating..... When I first posted about how much she ate, how much she seemed to enjoy it, people told me to enjoy it, that eventually, it would stop. Well, a year later, the girls still eats every bite with gusto, can be taken to any 5 star restaurant and will eat with utensils, without spilling a drop. I haven't had one food argument with her..... you cannot imagine what that does to my heart!
We had a family dinner last night in honor of the anniversary. I put her in her sister's silks, from her own previous anniversary at the same age.... I had to let out all the darts to squeeze her in there! BB wasn't built for silks!
She's been quite under the weather for a little while, was tested for pneumonia yesterday (negative) and hasn't been feeling herself, so today, just for old time's sake, she refused to let me change her diaper or even touch her, only wanted DAAAAAAAADDY! Happy Anniversary Beach Ball!
I have decided to learn to use my new Rebel. First, I read the manual! Shocking! I did figure out how to make the histogram go away from my photo-reviewing, because I don't know how to read it, so it's pointless for now.
But just because I read the manual doesn't mean I understood much! I know all the buttons and stuff, but I don't understand the basics of speed, lighting and all those fancy other words..... So I am signing up for a photography class online. My buddy Debberoo is going to take the Learn your Rebel class with me, but the timing of the classes is conflicting with the arrival of her new baby (the nerve!) so we might have to put it off for now. Either way, I am signing up for a class that starts on February 6th. So if you have ever wanted to take such a class, let me know, I'm looking for a buddy! (or two)
In the mean time, I had some fun on the weekend. playing with the different automatic settings, trying to figure out ligthing while playing outside in the snow, and just plain shooting until i felt I got some good pictures.
I've put them in an album for your perusal.....
well..... just as I start drafting my first anniversary post for Beach Ball, exalting the virtues of what a good girl she is, how far along she's come, how sunny and good natured she is.... She has decided that she will not sleep at the cottage. Everything was fine, we were here for a long time over the holidays and she didn't give us one bit of trouble. Except for the talking after we put them to bed, but you put a 4 1/2 and 2 1/2 year old in a room in the dark, you have to expect a bit of chatter before they close their eyes.
Last weekend though, even if Dumpling was fast asleep, exhausted from hours outside breathing in the fresh air, Beach Ball just wouldn't stop talking, moving around the room, reading books.... anything and everything but sleeping. Eventually, it occurred to me that all the dolls she had taken to bed lacked one thing: a pointy corner to stick in her nose. Don't ask, she's got this weird thing about sticking something "pointy" like the tail or ear of her rag cat in her nose when she falls asleep. So I procured her Lamb, with floppy, pointy ears, but it didn't help. She was still up after we went to bed, didn't fall asleep til near midnight and woke up several times, finally demanding to get up at 5 am. Then, she was a piss all day!
Last night, we had a repeat performance. Except this time, we didn't kid around. I don't want her waking up Dumpling, so at 10 pm, when she was showing no signs of slowing down, we threatened her with the worst threat to this toddler: close your eyes or go in the crib in our room...... 10 minutes later, she was strolling around again, so off to the crib she went. Miraculously, she was asleep when I went to bed an hour later, but she was up at 4 am, begging to be let out of the crib to roam around. I don't know what he did/said, but hubs eventually got her coaxed back down to sleep, but this is not fun....
I don't know what it could be. the routine is the same, we come every week, it's predictable, she has her stuff, her blanket, her rag cat, but for some reason, she just won't go to sleep. And she only does it here, not in the city....... aaaarrrrgghhhh!
I'm too old to be raving all night.
PS: on a cinema note.... hated There Will Be Blood..... too long, extremely boring. Well acted, beautiful cinematography, but really..... boring. Hubs didn't like it either.
Last week, hubs and I found 2 hours in the afternoon when we were both not-working and the babysitter was home, and we went to see Juno. Loved! OK, there is something a little wrong with loving a movie about teen pregnancy, but seriously, well written, funny, excellent performances, just all around, and excellent movie.
A few weeks before that, I had gone to see PS I Love You, which was a real girly, tear-jerker of a flick. Cute, but predictable. Though any movie that uses The Pogues' Fairy Tale of New York simply cannot be bad.
Now, without giving away incriminating details, lets just say I know someone who has the "horrible job" of voting for some awards, so over the last few days, I have been able to watch some movies that were considered for nominations from the dis-comfort of my couch. You see, I thought I had a strained back. After a quick visit to the doctor, a weird assessment of the pain (front to back bending impossible, side to side a non-issue) and peeing in a cup, I found out in fact I had a kidney infection and am now taking antibiotics and waiting for it to clear up and stop hurting like mad.
To pass the time, I have watched several movies. Loved Charlie Wilson's War. Really enjoyed Atonment, though hubs left the room after hald a hour - Brit early 20th century pieces are not his thing. Made the mistake of devoting 2 hours to The Bucket List...... Also saw Enchanted, which I had seen in the theaters as a pre-screening for Dumpling. I have now let her watch it, she loves it. The cartoon princess becomes real, which is simple Da'Bomb for my little Dumpling. Watching I am Legend as we speak. Not my thing, but it's a good way to pass the afternoon.
In an effort to stock our stores with the coolest, best design products, I follow a lot of links online.....
While this particular link proved to be curious and fascinating, I'm not totally sure I should be ordering these.....
But seriously, my favorite has got to be this one... I love plushies, I follow all the craft links to people making cool Crochet TV Dinners and knit hamburgers, but this.... not too sure....
I have no problem with the Disney Princesses. Yes, the movies are cheesy, the old ones are full of terrible stereotypes, but in the end, I have no problem with them. Dumpling's first obsessions were Cinderella and Snow White, old school. How many times did we play "eat the bad apple"? And when she used to watch Cinderella in French, there is one scene where the mice are helping her sew the gown and pull and tug, in French, they say " Ho hisse" (heeve ho). She would wait for that one scene, and after that, she was done, she didn't care about the prince or the ball, she just wanted to hear the mice say Ho Hisse!
I'll take Mulan over The Wiggles any day, and as much as I enjoyed the Dora phase, Ratatouille and Toy Story are much more enjoyable on a long car ride, to me anyways. In an ideal world, we wouldn't be watching anything, but actually, I don't believe that. I think it's OK for my kids to watch some TV and some movies, provided they have been screened by my first. Theses days, the heavy rotation is Charlie and Lola, Bo on the Go, Backyardigans and Curious George.
I do try very hard not to let "branded products" permeate our lives. We have princess underwear and we have pretty much every Dora board game ever made, but like AmFam, I balk at Princess Cereal.
Lately, I have been fighting another battle. Keeping High School Musical I/II from entering my house. That's right. She's not 5 yet, and somehow, the tweenster phenomena has infiltrated the pre-K class. At the beginning of the school year, the little girl in our car pool would talk endlessly about HSM. Dumpling had no clue what she was talking about, and I would quickly turn the conversation over to something they both knew. I thought it was just the one girl. I quickly found out how wrong I was..... I figured out how 4 year olds came to even watch HSM: older siblings. The particular kid in our car pool is actually the oldest in her house.... which is weird. But the other girls who are very into HSM have an 8 or 9 year old sister. I personally thought HSM was more for the tweenster/teenager crowd, but in speaking to my 14 and 16 year old nieces, I was quickly informed that they would NEVER watch such a kiddy movie, and that in fact, 8-10 year olds were the target audience.
With families around here averaging 4 kids, it's understandable that the younger siblings would end up watching with the older ones. The kid in our carpool saw it with her cousins while staying at her grandparent's house. But here is the thing. The mother then bought it for her. For her then 4 1/2 year old. Who is now completely versed in the entire thing. She can rattle off every word to every song. I know. Because she turned 5 yesterday and had a party at school and someone gave her the CD. And this morning, when she got into the car, she asked to listen to it. I was curious to see if my instincts were right on this one, so without showing Dumpling WHAT I was putting in, I told her we would listen to her little friends music, just this once.
First of all, the idiot-savant of HSM proceeded to introduce every song with "this is the song with the pretty girl and the other girl, and the main boy" or "in this song, the girls and boys hold hands" and finally "this song has only boys. it's stupid. I like the songs with the boys AND girls".... The music is sooooo sugary-pop, and clearly, there are no objectionable lyrics or anything.... but it's a movie about TEENAGERS in HIGH-SCHOOL. My kid is in PRE-K!
When we got to school, I gave the kid her CD back and thanked her for bringing it, but that from no-on, we would keep listening to the music her mommy and I had agreed on at the beginning of the year (Dan Zanes, Wiggles, non-children's stuff). But I know for a fact that when the mommy picks them up, she is going to put it on. And it bugs the crap out of me. Because this is one Disney line am I not going to cross, not in pre-K.
I have been jonesing for some good tv lately, and decided to give the Sarah Silverman program a try.... oh my! the Tab episode..... funniest sh*t I have seen in a long time! Clearly, not a show for everyone, but I am having a ball working through the episodes....
When I get bummed out, like I have been feeling these past few weeks, I take on a DYI project. Feeling frustrated? Bang on something! Feeling angry? Destroy something! Feeling blue and down? Throw some orange and magenta on the walls! Since I have banished orange and magenta from the blog, I decided to throw it up all over the walls of the guest rooms at the Kibbutz. The details are over at Ubercrafty.
(In case you decide to skip the long narrative over there, let me just point out that those are TWO different rooms! I haven't completely lost my mind!) Also, mom and dad... Surprise! "your" room has been painted!
Now, onto a more serious topic... something that has been on my mind for a long time, ironically, probably since I first blogged about the Kibbutz... Back in the day, oh, 2 years ago now, when we first purchased our cottage, I got a troll dissing me. I don't remember the details, but it was mainly about the size of our second home, and basically, about the fact that we have money and how we chose to spend it..... Since I have been blogging, there have been very few taboos around here. I have blogged about every aspect of my life, my husband, my kids, my in-laws, heck, I've blogged about my period! But for some reason, whenever I blog about something remotely to do with our finances, I thread very lightly..... Even mentioning that we went to China in first class, with paid tickets, not on points, seemed to be taboo.... I didn't want to attract the attention.....
As some of you are aware, a troll struck a very good friend of mind yesterday. No need for links, either you know or you don't know. There was even a second comment about yet another friend's vacations.... The woman is a TRAVEL AGENT! If she's not going to take fabulous vacations, who is? And you know what, even if she wasn't a travel agent......
Here is the thing.... I live a more than comfortable life. We are on easy street so to speak. Why should I be ashamed of that? Why should I not blog about buying a Kate Spade bag, or staying at a 5 star hotel when I travel, in first class? Anyone who has read me knows I still buy my stuff on the sale rack at the GAP because up until I married, I didn't have money. So I do know the value of a dollar. I go to work, I run a company. I could sit at home and go to yoga. Scratch that. I could sit at home and make yoga come to me, like every other yummy-mummy on my street. I could hire a nanny to move in and take care of the children so I wouldn't have to bother with them. But I don't. So when I do go out and splurge on a pair of shoes, or a dress, or a cottage, I want to blog about it. And I don't want to attract the ire of trolls!
My second daughter just started nursery school this year. Same school my first daughter attended, mostly all the same families. But this year, there is a little girl there, the daughter of one of the richest families in the country. A well-known family, a family that has businesses and charities named after them. This little girl gets brought to school every day by her assigned nanny. Her sibling has a different nanny. The nanny doesn't walk over to the school. They are driven, by a driver, who is not assigned to the parents, only to the children. Everyday, I am sort of stunned by it. Not because of the expense, but to me, if you are going to be that rich, wouldn't you want to free yourself up and spend every second you can with your kid? But see, that's the thing... that's just ME! And I'm not going to hold it against them! Are they supposed to apologize for being rich? They are generous, they give away plenty, so who am I to judge? (Though I must admit, watching the nanny and bodyguard/driver go apple picking with the kid was pretty freaking hilarious! I wanted to blog about it at the time, but I realized, it wasn't my place.)
So here is the thing. I have money. Some of my friends have money, some don't. If someone wants to blog about their shoes, their vacations, their handbags, they should be able to, without fear of judgment. Because the alternative is communism... that's the only way to be fair to everyone... yeah, I didn't think you'd go for that......