Monday, January 29, 2007


Snow Drops that is.... Apparently 'Snow Drops' are the first bulbs to come up and the rest should start within the next couple of weeks... How cool is that???

Here is Toria a couple of weeks ago in the snow - she helped me shovel the entire driveway! T.G. the snow melted within a couple of days. It would've been better if it melted when it fell but I guess I can't get greedy ... besides I've been told that the exercise was good for me.

And here is Toria this past Friday. It was a beautiful day. I must admit that I did wear a jacket but Toria was so busy running around she took hers off. Check out the red ball flying through the air...

Friday, January 26, 2007

Things that make you go Hmmm.

A conversation betweeen a Neighbourhood mom and Tomas:

NM: "What's your favourite computer game?"
T: ""
NM: "Do you race on that game?"
T: "Yes, but when I get home today I'm going to play BEER.COM"
NM: "Oh really????"

ME (very calmly): "Err, Tomas where did you learn about" (I have never heard this before but I had a pretty good idea what the answer might be)

T: "That's what it says on the back of Dale Earnhardt Jr.'s race car. And on the front it says 'Budweiser. King of Beers'".

NM (with a (thankfully) rather amused expression): "Of course."

Thursday, January 25, 2007

Nap Time.

Wow. It's been a long time since I could say those two words. Nap. Time. Alas, that is what time it is right now. I got the call from Tomas' teacher right after recess that he felt like puking and could I come and get him. Turns out that he is very tired (he hasn't been falling asleep until after 9 while being in bed well before 8pm) and he got teased at recess because he has all of his baby teeth. I think because he is so tired he was very sensitive to the teasing. Anyway, he is now resting in his bed.

As for Toria - she had an overly active playdate this afternoon. A really nice boy and an equally nice mom but a boy who is into everything and moves from one rough active game to another in the blink of an eye. There were puddles of water all over the floor ("We're doing an experiment") to broken plastic 'unbreakable' straws to monopoly money, marbles, and glitter glue mixed in with the water on the floor. At least his mom made him TRY and clean up. And Toria really likes him - between the two of them they seem to create their own power source.

UPDATE: Tomas is playing on his floor with his cars and when he heard me walking down the hallway he leapt into his bed and under the covers... except he was sideways and his feet were hanging off the bed! On the other hand Toria is asleep.

I am multi-tasking: I'm waiting for Todd to finish reading my blasted Parksville Camping article, pondering how much effort it will take to clean up the play-date disaster, AND typing this blog.

Wednesday, January 24, 2007

Yep, still here.

8:19 kids are in bed. Are they asleep. Not likely. But they're in bed and that is what matters most, right?

Monday night the kids and I were at swimming lessons and Todd phoned and said "Hey, I've got tickets to the hockey game TONIGHT - do you want to go?" Well, Tomas pretty much swam the length of the pool in 3 seconds flat and was dressed before I could say "Sure". Toria was also excited but she mainly likes eating the popcorn at the hockey games.

I should tell you that we are very fortunate in that Todd gets leftover tickets to the Box so we sit in luxury. Which brings me to my next story - next week Tomas' Beavers group are going to the hockey game and they're sitting in the regular seats. Tomas is not sure about that! He is thinking that maybe he could just invite the Beavers to the box so they could hang out there.

I've gotta dash - Todd is at the driving range and I need to finish that @#$@##! Parksville article.

Friday, January 19, 2007

Parksville article update.

A while ago I mentioned that I'd been asked to write an article for the local Island RV Guide for their March issue. 3000 to 3500 words. For a $50 RV part gift certificate. I've been told that the going rate for magazines is $1 a word or for less-established down to 30 cents a word. This works out to 1.6 cents a word. Nonetheless, I'm not a professional writer. Hated English. Almost failed english so we mathematician-types can't be choosy when writing.

I digress, I sent in a rough draft this morning to make sure that I was on the 'write' track and I got a response that it is great and they're going to break it up over 3 issues Mar/Apr May/Jun and July/August. Personally, I think it will be sucky if you can't get the whole picture all at once but who am I to say? All I want to know is - will I get 3 $50 gift certificates? I'm holding out for a La Fuma Recliner: Otherwise I'm likely to end up with $50 worth of toilet chemical and what fun is that?


Last night Tomas knew Todd was coming home at 7:00 as I was going to a meeting at the school for 7:15. Tomas was in his bedroom playing, looked at the clock [6:56] and yelled "Dad better hurry he only has 4 more minutes".

Later (after Todd arrived at 7:03) he went to check on Tomas and found him laying on his bed counting... 79, 78, 77, 76, 75 ... backwards from 100!

As for Toria she is winning the hearts of her male admirers. If you ask her who her best friend at Jr. K. is she will always say "Evan". Why is he her best friend? "Because he makes me laugh". She asked me to ask Evan's mom if he could come over for a play date.

Yesterday I asked Evan's mom if he might like to come over. She smiled at me and shook her head. "Uh, Evan is usually adamant about staying away from girls. He has an older and younger sister and thinks they're all icky but I will ask him, just in case."

This morning Evan's mom came to me and said "I was shocked but when I asked Evan if he wanted to go to Toria's house for a play date he said 'OK, but only Toria. She is the only cool girl. No other girls'. They're coming over next week.

Monday, January 15, 2007

Grumpy... now cheery

Written January 15, 6pm
I'm grumpy. I think it is fair to be grumpy. I had a root canal this morning. AND it is not just like having a cavity. It sucked - I had my mouth open for 3 hours! (And it wasn't even 3 hours of talking!) Ugh. Oh well. It is done now. I had to be up at 6 and leave the house by 7 and am totally tired tonight. This probably adds to my grumpiness factor.

When I got home the mail lady brought me my mail which included a delicious package of chocolate-covered-Macadamia nuts from Hawaii. I love Macadamia nuts. Except my jaw is so sore from holding my mouth wide-open that I couldn't open it to eat a chocolate covered Macadamia nut. I had chicken-noodle soup. It doesn't compare. Even right now those chocolate nuts are staring at me across the kitchen beckoning me.

And, have you heard that Victoria is expecting MORE SNOW. Enough is enough. It's taken a week but we have*almost* got rid of the snow we have from last Tuesday. I DON'T WANT ANYMORE SNOW.

It is 6pm. My children go to bed at 8 but I am ready for bed now. Do you think if I put them to bed now they would sleep?

Written January 16, 2:30pm
OK, I'm now cheery. The kids watched a movie last night (yeah, yeah, I've got a big guilt trip on the TV-watching factor but last night I didn't care). Then they happily went to bed at 8pm. All was quiet until Toria leapt out of bed at 6:00 this morning, then 6:30 and finally 7:00. 7:00 is our 'get up time' for the kids. She came into my room yelling the clock has a 7 in the first place then dot dot zero zero. Time to get up. She was so cute you couldn't help but smile. [If she went to bed at 8pm and woke up cheery at 6am can you imagine what would've happened if I'd put them to bed at 6pm. EGADS. She would've been up at 4:00am!]

The temperature is +6 on my outdoor thermometer the snow is almost all melted and the BULBS are starting to sprout up! Yes ma'am, I can see the start of flowers in my back-yard. Hallelujah!

And I ate chocolate covered-macademia nuts for breakfast. And they were delicious.

Sunday, January 14, 2007

Loot Bags

Tomas and Toria both attended birthday parties yesterday. Tomas' was at the bowling alley for Glow Bowling followed by pizza and cupcakes. Toria & I were asked to go to the movie "Happily N'ever After" for her friends' party. [First off - it is a horrible movie, there is a reason it has a 3% rating on Secondly, did I mention that I had to pay for both Toria and I - I'm OK paying for me but am I also supposed to pay for my daughter - what is the protocol on these things? AND we gave a gift].

OK, back to my story. Toria & I leave the movie theatre and head to the bowling alley. We pick Tomas up. We get into the car and Tomas checks out his loot bag. Turns out he received 2 ring pops (and a free pass to the recreation center).

"Toria", he says, "let's share. I'll give you something from my loot bag and you give me something from yours."

"Sure." she replies, as she takes his ring pop, places it in her loot bag and passes him a bracelet.

Tomas looks at the bracelet and goes "Huh?. No Toria, I want candy".

"Sorry Tomas but I only have a bracelet, a notepad and a necklace. You can have the bracelet".

.... you can only imagine what happened when she refused to return the Ring Pop and he was left holding a purple bracelet!

Thursday, January 11, 2007

Smart kids...

Tomas is getting too smart for his own good. I was talking with Todd to determine if we should give the kids a special snack of either I C E C R E A M or P O P C O R N.

And Tomas yells - "I want Ice Cream". What happens when you can't spell around your children anymore? Should we try and learn a foreign language?

Here's my eldest smart one....

And my youngest smart one...

In warmer weather (last week) here are the kids playing in our backyard. Toria is driving the boat (AKA: the rock) and Tomas is fishing in the creek (we've never seen a fish there but lots of leaves).

Wednesday, January 10, 2007

Don't get that excited mom.

This is a message to my mom - she read that I've been asked to write an article and left a message on my answering machine asking for the juicy details (i.e. how much$$$). It's too late to call back (11:20pm her time). It's for a local Island RV magazine ( and if they decide to publish my article I'll be paid $50... in RV parts!

The reason I was asked is because I responded to a request for Island RV pictures with this picture of Todd & Toria. (Actually, I *think* this is the picture I sent in (I didn't keep a copy of my sent mail) - when the lady replied she said she really liked the picture of my husband and daughter...)

And while I'm at it - here is a picture of ME (also taken during our first Island RV-trip): An official Birkenstock-wearing, Tree-hugging Islander.

Monday, January 08, 2007

One more thing...

Christmas cards still haven't been written. I am SOO sorry. Thank you so much to everyone that sent us a card. It is so wonderful hearing from you. I was going to work on the cards this weekend but we have a friend visiting from Edmonton. Then next week (besides having a root canal. Serious. I'm not just saying "I'd rather have a root canal then write Christmas cards". I really am. Monday.8am.) Oops. where was I? Oh yes (clearly by someone who has never read my writing) I've been asked to write a THREE-THOUSAND-word (as in a '3' with three zero's behind it) word article on our first RV trip on the island. I only pray that the editor has better grammar than I do. So, that's next week.
I'm targeting Easter Cards.

Good news.

Today has been a good day. School started. Tomas is excited because they got their 'thin tip markers' at school today. They kissed their fat markers good-bye.

The tree branches were finally cut-down. Huge. When a branch is dangling 80 feet in the air you lose perspective. Actually it was a top to a tree and was 15" across. HUGE. The guy rode a bucket halfway up the tree then climbed the rest of the way... with a chainsaw dangling from his belt. Hmm. Oh well, all ended safely.

I finally have the house clean and the laundry caught up. If I stopped procrastinating and typing this blog I may even get the bills paid.

I cancelled my cleaning lady. I know, I know. WHAT THE *&^%%(*&^ WAS I THINKING?? I'm thinking that Molly Maid's prices are ridiculously high and since the good cleaning lady had a heart attack and they've been sending the crappy cleaners I have to reclean what they 'cleaned' anyway. Stay tuned. I'm sure you haven't heard the last of this yet. (I'd give it 3 weeks before I start whining about cleaning again!).

Ugh. I also have to go and make my grocery list. We're down to leftover lima beans and brown lettuce. I hate grocery shopping. I've been blogging about my grocery shopping dislike on a friend's blog so I won't repeat myself here. I've been procrastinating (I'm good at that!) with the excuse that I don't want to take the kids but Toria starts school tomorrow and I get 2 hours of child-free-grocery-shopping time so there is no more excuses. Maybe I'll just start using the grocery store's delivery service. Anyone ever tried grocery delivery??

Friday, January 05, 2007

Customer Service

Let's talk about customer service and the LACK OF IT.

First off, Davey Tree Service.
December 8 - I called to get a quote on having some branches pruned after the great snowstorm.
Dec. 11 - I received a quote. It was a reasonable amount & could be done by DECEMBER 15
Dec. 14 - major windstorm with major damage in the area and I'm pushed way down the queue.
Jan. 2 - receive call that I'm the 2nd job for Jan. 3rd.
Jan. 3 - wait at home ALL DAY. Try phoning - "Yes, you're next", they reply.
Jan. 3 - 5pm - I phone again "It's dark out. I imagine you're not coming". "Correct. We ran into some problems, the truck chipper broke", is the response. I indicate that I should have been phoned earlier at the time they knew this was a problem.
Jan. 3 - 5:30pm - receive call that we're the 2nd job on Jan. 5. and they should arrive between 11 & 1.
Jan. 5 - 1:30pm - No one is here - I call. The first job is taking longer then expected & they are 1 to 1 1/2 hours away but are working in my area.
Jan. 5 - 4:00pm - The arborist phones and says he is sorry but his crew is STUCK IN THE MUD and we are now scheduled for first thing Monday morning.

Do I rant? Do I rave? No, I calmly explain that I've been waiting at home for 2 days. My children have been in the house for 2 of their Christmas vacation days so we could watch them climb our 80 foot tree. Why wasn't I scheduled for first thing Thursday morning when I was bumped Wednesday night? I'm not impressed. I'm frustrated.

The arborist says "I'm sorry. I didn't know you were waiting. They didn't tell me." (I'd been talking with the main office who even told me "It's an awesome sight to see".)

AHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH, I wished I'd ranted and raved and the arborist had made even more-lame excuses so I could've yelled. Instead, he just apologized.

And even bigger complaints of customer service goes to End of the Roll. I ordered an area rug. Waited 4 to 6 weeks for delivery. Phoned to find out the status. Was shuffled around. Finally spoke to the manager. He said that the carpet had been discontinued and I should come look for a new one. When I asked for my SIZEABLE deposit back. He told me that it was returned when they told me the carpet was discontinued. GUESS AGAIN. No one told me the carpet was discontinued AND there was no refund on my credit card. The most appalling part of this was that in a 10 minute conversation with the manager NOT ONCE did he say 'sorry'. It was this guys fault or that guys fault or my fault or blah blah blah. Step up to the plate, accept responsibility and at the very least apologize. (I finally got my deposit back).

OK, thanks for reading me rant and rave. C.

Thursday, January 04, 2007

Happy New Year

What a fantastic holiday. All the grandparents came as did my sister and her family, we had good weather and great times.

The kids had a great year and loved playing with their 16-month-old cousin, Weston. Toria was like a little mother hen and Tomas a big-brother - he kept giving Weston cars so the two of them could race. They'd chase each other and laugh and giggle until one of them came crashing down on a car.
Of course, Santa was good to them. Tomas received a Slot Car race track set. Toria had asked Santa for a princess with a dress and batteries. She received the dancing (batteries needed!) Princess Genevieve from the 12 Dancing Barbies movie. Weston received the TMX Elmo - very funny.

Todd was a world-class chef and we had amazing food each night and as if that wasn't enough he also took to making gourmet breakfasts in the morning. Top notch husband. Here are the ways to eat turkey:
Dec. 25 - Traditional turkey
26th - hot turkey sandwich leftovers
27th - world-famous turkey salad (my sister claims that Todd's turkey salad is the only reason she came for Christmas this year)
28th - Thai spicy noodle soup made from the turkey broth (this may be the only reason that I eat turkey on the 25th is so that I get the yummy soup made from the broth)
29th - turkey is all gone so my parents took us out for supper. We had fish.

I'll try and post some pictures later but the kids are now awake and looking for breakfast.