Monday, May 26, 2008

Success! (And I digress.)

The last time I tried to donate blood, my dumb veins were to skinny and they could hardly get anything out of them. I went with Dad, who has donated I don't know how many times, but enough times that he was chummy with all the nurses. That's typical Dad.

He can't donate anymore, of course. Now he's the guy getting the blood. So, since he can't go I figured I should see if I could pick up the slack.

Happily, my veins were big enough in my other arm and things went much better. And other than getting a little woozy, and using up two hours of my evening, I'm none the worse for wear. Hurrah!

Right now, I'm downloading Sk8er Boi for Ben. (Yes, he is an odd child.) Whenever we go to Stupidstore Ben and Sam have to push the buttons on one of those CD things that they usually have relaxation CD's on. Ben presses the button for Sk8er Boi over and over and Sammy presses the button for some piano instrumental CD playing Moonlight Sonata. Oddballs. Anyways, after it turns into a bit of a farce, switching back and forth between the two songs faster and faster, with each of them either gently swaying or bouncing all over the place when their song is playing, Ben always ends up singing the chorus all through Stupidstore and frequently throughout our house for the rest of the day.

Here are Ben's lyrics:

"Delicious skater boy.
Da da dish later boy.
She wasn't good eluff for her.
Now he's a superstar.
Delicious his guitar...
Wait. How did it go?
I don't know that song. Let's listen to it again. Wait. How come the skater girl is going to jail? Is she going to jail? How come the skater girl likes to break cars? How come? The police are angry at her."

Yup. Let that be a lesson to you. Don't smash your guitar into the windshield of a car. It's just never a good idea. Music videos... Endless scope for teaching life lessons.

Sunday, May 25, 2008

December's Favorite Posts. (It is finished.)

Mom tagged me on her blog again. Which reminded me that I'm still not done the last tag she sent my way. So, finally, I give you my favorite post from December of 2007:

Okay, actually, I'm going to have to give you a couple. I thought December would be an easy month till I realized that in December I traditionally count down to Christmas with 12 of my favorite things, which means I have to pick my favorite of my favorites. Which is much to difficult for a Sunday afternoon, plus I need to go to a Mary Kay party in 15 minutes, so I have to hurry.

Here's my favorite funny post from December.

And here's my favorite happy post from December.

And here's my favorite video post from December. (I watched it again just now. I cried. I love my family so much. I can't wait to see them in a few weeks.)

And here's my favorite "make you cry" post from December.

So there you go. After five long months I finally finished my mom's tag. Phew. She tagged me again. That woman doesn't give up does she? Hope springs eternal in the mother's breast.

Monday, May 19, 2008

How Do You Hold a Moonbeam In Your Hand?

What do you do with a child that happily helps you clean house, and when you thank him he says, "It's my pleasure Mommy!" You throw him a party. That's what you do.

And what do you do with a child who pouts when you bring out only the cutest birthday cake you could possibly imagine, that you made with your own two hands from scratch?You giggle like a maniac, that's what. 'Cause it's all part of who he is, and who he is is a weird amazing little nut job who you couldn't possibly love anymore than you already do. After all, there are some problems that just don't need solving.

More of Ben's Birthday here.

Sunday, May 18, 2008

My Baby's Turning Four

Four years ago, at this very moment, my body finally decided enough was enough and started the long process of trying to evict its resident of over 41 weeks, Benjamin Abram Willems. It seems like yesterday to me...

I was sitting on the couch after a few last ditch attempts to bring on labor (never mind), watching
Colonial House, and braiding my hair. After a particularly violent kick from aforementioned resident, I said to Glen, "This baby is now kicking me so hard I can hear it!" Twenty minutes or so I suddenly remembered a passage I had read in The Girlfriend's Guide To Pregnancy (I lost my copy, by the way, did I lend it to any of you?) just that afternoon, which explained that some women actually hear a popping sound when their water breaks. It couldn't be... Could it? Could this baby finally be coming on the night before I was booked to be induced? Could I actually be in labor?

It seemed so strange. For so long it had felt like I was going to be pregnant for ever and this whole pregnancy was just an elaborate joke. It felt bizarre to think I might actually be in labor... But I was.

Everything I had read and seen in my prenatal classes told me I had tons of time. All the information presented to me told me that my first labor would slowly progress through the stages and that real labor was still hours away. So I watched the end of the Colonial House episode, while I felt what I thought must be contractions becoming more regular and intense, and then Glen and I made our leisurely way to the hospital.
Then all hell broke loose.

Honestly, I skipped right past that whole early stage thing where you see the mommies-to-be walking up and down hallways, pausing every five or ten minutes to take some deep breathes before proceeding with their baby-hurrying walks. (Now that I look back, I expect I didn't actually skip it, it just seemed that way. I was probably in that stage for most of that day and evening before my water broke and I had no idea.) I was four centimeters by the time we got to the hospital and hit 8 centimeters within the first few hours. I know I was nine centimeters by around 1am and then everything stopped. Except the pain... And the contractions.

Ben was stuck and I got the shock of my life when my doctors recommended a c-section at around 11am that morning. I really thought that I was built for childbirth and would have no troubles, so the emergency c-section blew my mind a little bit. Sadly, there are no epidurals in Dorkton, so I was unconscious when Ben was born. That still haunts me a little... That I missed the moment of his birth... His first breath... His first cry...

But I've been there for all of the other firsts so far. His first laugh. His first pickle. His first, well his second anyways, step. His first time down the big slide at the park. His first little prayer. His first day of preschool... And I have to confess... I'm feeling a little blue that all those firsts are over. I'm feeling a little fragile thinking that my toddler isn't a toddler anymore. He's a little boy, and some day he'll be a big boy and then a teenager and then a man.

I'm trying to remind myself that I still have many firsts ahead of me to share with my Benjamin. His first time on skates. His first time riding a bike without training wheels. His first day of school. His first crush. His first pimple. His first time driving a car. His first time falling in love. He has so many firsts in front of him and I'll get to be there for a lot of them, and so will God. And hopefully, I'll get to be there the day he decides to follow Jesus, and hear all about his first steps into God's kingdom.
So I shouldn't be sad. But I am a teeny tiny bit. Because my baby isn't such a baby anymore...

Anyways... Happy Birthday my sweet boy! Mommy promises she will cheer up for your big day tomorrow and she loves you tomorrow.

Thursday, May 15, 2008

Ben made a new friend today.

Meet Rocky:I have to point out:

  1. He came up with the name all on his own.
  2. That rock has not been altered in any way. He found it at the park today, brought it to me, and introduced him as "my new friend Rocky". I didn't even notice his face till Ben pointed it out to me.
  3. I think Rocky looks a lot like Ben in this photo.

Here's Rocky going for a "swim" with
some of the "flowers" the boys picked for me today:Rocky swims a lot like my sister Ang.

Monday, May 12, 2008

Time Goes By

Half a year ago, when I bought our Phantom of the Opera tickets, I thought it would take forever for it to get here. But it went by pretty quickly... Not as quickly as the show seemed to, but still, pretty quickly. Here we are ready and waiting for the show to start:
We had great seats and an absolutely fab time. I went with Glen, my mom and dad, my sister, and my best friend from elementary school, Sheila. (Mom and Dad aren't in the picture because we bought them seats in the row ahead of us, so they could feel like they were on a date. Glen isn't in the picture, because he got stuck taking it for us.)

While we were waiting in the line up for the bathroom during intermission, which actually went fairly quickly too, not because the line was short, but because we were talking... Where was I? Oh yeah, while we were waiting in line, we talked about how time seems to move at such different speeds depending on how old you are, and what you are doing. For instance, when I was a little girl, every year seemed to last an eternity. Summer vacations lasted longer, and each year of school dragged on and on and on and on and on. Now, it seems like I blink, and half a year has gone by.

Three hours of Phantom, of course, only seemed to last about an hour. Then after the show time slowed right down again while we were waiting in the parking lot trying to get out of our spot. After I finally forced my way in front of a pushy teenage girl who didn't know how to take turns, it sped up like crazy again. This is because Ang and I had a lovely time tormenting her by letting all kinds of people go in front of us to "teach her a lesson". Heh heh. Being polite for spite is even better than just plain being polite. Good times. No, great times.

Anyways. Today time has gone back to normal speed and it will stay that way for a while I suppose, because I have nothing very interesting planned for the next while. (Unless you count photoshopping, because time goes into "tormenting teenagers in parking lots" speed when I'm on photoshop.) Actually, it'll probably go by really slowly tomorrow, since I'm subbing.

And now here we are at the end of this post. Did it go by fast? Or slow? Or medium? Writing it went by medium for me. Right about now, while all of you are coming to the realization that this post is going nowhere either fast or slow, I bet there are a lot of you wishing you could make time go backwards so you could get back the two or three minutes you wasted reading this. But you can't. Because fast or slow or medium speed... Time goes by.

Tuesday, May 06, 2008

On a Happier Note

I'd like to announce the engagement of Benjamin to his good friend Sophie. It was all very sudden, but of course, we're thrilled. Here's how it all went down: Sophie: So... Do you think you'd like to marry me Ben?
Ben: Ummmm... Yeah. I think so.

And there you have it. LOL.

Sadly, I missed most of the conversation leading up to this big moment in Ben's life. He and Sophie were swinging, snacking, and chatting about things like what they want to be when they grow up (Sophie: Cowgirl, Ben: Princess) and I was reading a book and only partly tuned in when suddenly, the question was casually popped and even more casually answered.

Ah, springtime... Love is definitely in the air.

Monday, May 05, 2008

How Nice

The last two times I tried to schedule a birthday party for Sam I had to cancel. Both times the boys had fevers or flu symptoms a day or so before, so for the safety of the kids that were coming, I called all my friends and told them we'd try again once the boys were feeling better. That's just the kind of girl I am. It's sad that Sammy never got a party here in Yorkton, but sometimes you have to grow up and be an adult.

Today my boys were both exposed to Hand, Foot, and Mouth Disease, because another parent decided their child's birthday party at the mall playland where I work was more important the the health and well-being of other children. Instead of bothering with rescheduling, they brought their sick (feverish and rashy) kids to playland, and then didn't even bother calling after they found out from their doctor this morning what the fever and rash were caused by.

So I took my kids with me to work, as I usually do, this afternoon. An hour after we'd been there I got a phone call from one of the other moms who had been at the party yesterday afternoon. A considerate person who thought it might be a good idea to warn us. Too late.

Now I can't see anyone in my family for probably for around a month. Ben's birthday party that I have been planning for months, booking a venue, sending out invitations, and buying things for is canceled until further notice. We have no place to stay in Saskatoon this weekend because we can't stay with my family, or any of my friends with kids, and Glen's family has company coming in for a big event. (I have Phantom of the Opera tickets for Sunday so we still need to make the trip into Saskatoon.) And somehow I need to break the news to my sweet little almost 4-year-old that there will be no party this weekend, no Gramma and Grampa, no Noah, no playing with a new semi-truck, no nothing.

Isn't it nice though, that the other party got to go ahead?

Sunday, May 04, 2008

Dumb and Dumber

SOUTHAMPTON, N.Y. - Police say two new parents left their baby alone in a car while they went to watch the Kentucky Derby at a New York off-track betting parlour.

Southampton Town police say the two-month-old was left unattended for more than 20 minutes during Saturday's race.

Police say the mother later told officers she thought the infant was safe enough because the car's heat was on.

The car was left running in a busy parking lot outside the Suffolk Regional Off-Track Betting Corp. branch in Southampton, on Long Island.

The parents were arrested on misdemeanor child-endangerment charges.

You know what gets me about this? A few years ago I was at Winners in Regina with my sister Ang and my friend Ang. I was waiting just outside for Ang (friend) to come and pick us up, while Ang (sister) went into the store to shop. Ang (friend) had our two boys in the van with her and was driving around to keep them happy while Ang (sister) and I shopped. I know I was out by the door at least five minutes before I noticed the sound of a baby crying. Assuming it was Ang (friend) in the van, and that one or both of our kids were crying and that she needed help, I started walking around the parking lot looking for her. I didn't see the van anywhere though. I couldn't figure out where the crying sound was coming from. As I walked back to the store I passed close by a minivan and found the source of the crying. A baby, alone, strapped into its carseat and screaming its little head off. (It was crying so loudly that I could hear it clearly from the inside of a closed van parked around 30 yards away from where I was standing.)

As I was standing there wondering what to do, a woman approached me and started yelling at me for leaving my baby alone in a vehicle. Once I explained that it wasn't my baby we scanned the parking lot and discussed what we should do. (While the poor little baby continued screaming in the van.) After about ten minutes of standing around waiting for the parent, and at about the point where I started to cry, she called the police on her cell phone. They took our names and the license plate number of the van, and said they'd send someone over.

At this point, we came up with the bright idea of paging the missing parent over the store PA system. Brilliant. We should have thought of it earlier, but we didn't. The other woman went into the store while I stood for another five minutes or so crying with the baby crying in the van beside me. At this point Ang (friend) pulled up with our children and I climbed into our van to explain to her what was going on. After a few more minutes, the woman who went in to page the mother came out and just as she was getting back to the van the mother of the baby FINALLY arrived.

Where had she been? Shopping in Winners along with her 5ish year old daughter. Why had she left the baby alone in the van? It had just fallen asleep when she left it, and she didn't want to wake it, and after all, she was only running in for a few minutes.

Oh. Great thinking. I know what it's like, shopping with little ones, and I know how crappy it can be to have them barely fall asleep and then have to wake them up, but come ON! Rather than wake your little one, you leave it alone and unprotected in a parking lot just off of the trans-Canada highway? Because shopping at Winners is THAT important? How about this for a brain-wave? GO HOME! Winners will still be there tomorrow. I promise.

I know it was at least a 20 minute (probably closer to 30 actually) shopping trip because I never saw her enter the store while I was standing outside the doors waiting. (I would have remembered her cute little daughter, if nothing else.) I know we were waiting for her by the van for fifteen minutes at the very least, plus there was the five minute search through the parking lot, and the talk with Ang (friend) in the van... The police didn't arrive before she left, and even though
there were two witnesses and we gave them the license plate number, which would have been enough information to track her, I was never contacted and I never heard another word about it.

I wonder how often things like this happen and never end up splashed across the international news. I bet that couple from the States wishes they'd left their baby alone in a car in Regina instead of New York.