Extra Day

I have a day which is mostly off from work today and so I'm going to do my best to take advantage of the extra time to get a few things done and probably take a nap.  So all I want to do today is wish all my fellow Canadians a happy upcoming Canada day. 

10x100 word count

Words required:Sedative concierge ballroom crystal varnish law spoon hand news laser
I felt like I’d just taken a sedative as the concierge greeted me and directing me to the ballroom.  Walking in I looked around; lasers played across the ceiling highlighting the crystal chandeliers, the table’s were set with literal silvers spoons and if I wasn’t mistaken all the wood had fresh varnish.  It should be against the law to flaunt your wealth so obscenely I thought as the man of the hour strode over immediately launching into a self-congratulatory speech on what wonderful news he was.   I plastered a smile on my face hoping to just get through the night.

A - You're Adorbale

As with most families, our weekends in both May and June were packed with weddings, first communions, christenings, and shows! One of the shows was the annual dance show put on by the dance school the girls have been attending for the past year. This was their first dance show.

I will leave my commentary on the dance show itself and preparation for the show for another time.  I will say, however, that the "guidelines" were a bit much, especially when dealing with 5 year-old triplets.

If you are the father to a girl, you probably understand the feelings I felt while watching my girls perform on stage.  My daughters make my heart sing each and every day, regardless of what is going on. A smile.  A giggle.  Their questions.  Their energy.  It all makes me so proud.  Yes, I am blessed.  Seeing them all "dolled-up" and dancing on stage was just priceless, however.  Totally priceless.

Video recording and picture taking were not alowed at the actual show so this clip is actually from the rehearsal, which was the day before. Their instructor(s) stood behind the curtain and directed them - that is why the girls are looking to the side at times.




Picture Day - fireworks

Just a few of my favorite firework pictures from last years Canada Day fesitivities at Assiniboine park. Always a fun night and the next is approaching quickly. 



Gymnastics Show 2012

This was year #2 for Alicenne, Anna and Emily in the annual gymnastics show put on by the local academy they go to.

I am sort of disappointed in myself for not moving to a spot where I could get better footage of the girls performing - I feel like the clips I got last year are so much better.  Oh well.

Allie is in the front row, center.

Anna is in the front, right.

Emily is in the rear, closest to the camera.

Enjoy!



Picture Prompt, Gazing Ball

“What is it Grandma?”Madelyn asked as she held the beautiful glass ball in front of the fireplace watching how it changed in the lights reflection.
“It is a gazing ball and you can see many wondrous things in a gazing ball.  You just have to look hard enough, you have to use all of your concentration and believe in it.” She replied
“Is it magic, like you?” Madelyn asked not looking up still captured by the light.
“Yes and like you” Madelyn’s eyes turned wide to her grandmother and she smiled back “Yes you’re magic; you have it in you just as I do. You still need to learn how to use it but I’ve known since you were just a wee one. Your mother bless her didn’t have the gifts we share and she was hesitant to let me teach you.”
Madelyn looked back down to the ball in her hand tears welling up once again.  For just a moment holding this beautiful ball in her hands she’d forgotten. 
When she and her mother had moved in with her Grandma about a year ago Madelyn hadn’t been told why but she’d known.  In fact she had known her mother was sick long before anyone else, except maybe her Grandma.  She had seen it, she couldn’t say exactly how but she did.
When her mother finally told her she had also told Madelyn that everything would be ok and that she would get better.  That still made Madelyn angry. By the time her mother told her she had known just as well as Madelyn had that she wasn’t going to get better, she had lied.  It was hard knowing that the last important thing her mother had told her had been a lie.
“What else could she have done my dear?” Madelyn’s grandma inquired softly as if hearing the thoughts running through Madelyn’s head. ”She didn’t know, not the way you and I do anyways.  She never stopped hoping that something would change and that she would get better.  To her it wasn’t a lie, besides I think she is ok now. I saw her in the ball.”
“You can do that?”Madelyn asked wide eyed, no matter how angry she was at her mother for lying she would give anything to see her again.
Her grandma nodded with a small smile “I can teach you if you want me to.”
“Ok” Madelyn responded moving closer to her grandma’s chair.

Power Of Words

This past weekend while on my second or third stop to pick up a missed item from the store I witnessed a truly disheartening scene. While I was picking up a carton of eggs a little boy of no more than 5 was told by his father to grab a carton for him.
Being a 5 year old boy he fumbled and dropped the carton, his father’s reaction was absolutely shocking and vile.  He began to tell this young boy that he was an idiot and worthless and that he would never do anything right. I was shocked by the hatred and anger in this man’s voice so startled in fact that although I would have liked to have said something I physically couldn’t speak.
This in and of itself is a terrible thing to hear a parent tell their child but it was the look on this little boys face that crushed me as his father continued to berate him.  He’d heard these words before, he didn’t cry, he didn’t offer a single complaint just stood there and accepted what he seemed to believe was his due. My heart broke for this poor boy and it’s been in my mind ever since.
Even more than saying something to this father I wish I could have taken that little boy and told him that he is a wonderful and unique person just as special as anyone else in this world.  I wanted to take that deadened look in his eyes and replace it with the happiness that all children deserve.  
I wanted to shake this father and make him see what he is doing to his son.  Children will believe what you say to them whether or not it is said out of anger or not.  As a parent you have the power to shape how your child feels about themselves right from day one.  How you react to accidents and in moments of stress will not affect just that moment but the rest of your child’s life.
I realize chances are had I said something he would have looked at me as the offending party and still not recognized what he was doing to his child.  Often we can’t see what we are doing wrong and we don’t recognize the power of our words and our actions.  I can only hope he realizes the power he holds to make his sons life better or worse before it’s too late.  
For me what I will try to take from this is a reminder to be kind to my children.  To love them no matter what they do and to always remember the power my words hold over them.    

List It

This morning as I often do I spent a few minutes writing a list of things that need to get done.  I write lists for many things and whenever a day or entire weekend is going to be very busy, as is this one, I list what I need to do. 
It does make a big difference in keeping me organized and on track.  Although I’m afraid the available time slots for this weekend have shrunk down to infinitesimally tiny moments and I maybe overextending just a little. 
I’ve got a shopping list, a things to do list, I should really do list and a can’t avoid list just for this weekend.  My lists have sub lists.  It would be funny if it wasn’t so ridiculous.  
My youngest is having her birthday party this weekend and the only thing I can say that is actually done is having invited all the kids.  We also haven’t found a single birthday gift for her actual birthday as well as gotten anything done for our annual July 1st party which is approaching rather quicker than expected.    
Oh well my penchant for lists has helped me out many more times than not.  It’s helped me to decide what updates I really want to do next, reminds me of projects I not quite finished and keeps me from having to return to a store for a single item.  My lists do make things go more smoothly.  
I’m kind of stuck on one item on one of my lists today.  Choose new shingles, as it turns out there are an awful lot of shades of grey and brown.  Both my husband and I have spent much more time than we expected staring at the “vizualizer service” which is supposed to make choosing easier. 
It hasn’t really helped that much and we need to let the roofing company know our final decision this morning in order to get the project started on time.  It needs to start on time for a variety of reasons and so we really need a final decision.
Fingers crossed no other list items get me stuck today.

Trying different techniques...




Journey's -100 word writings

Each and every journey begins with a moment in time, a thought, a word or an idea.  Regardless of if that journey is writing a hundred words, living well or anything in between it was begun by a singular concept. Our journeys, our goals, our dreams follow us through our lives never really gone until they are somehow resolved. It is no matter if that journey gets paused or side-stepped as that journey once begun remains with us.  We can never quite fail, because of this, we always carry on. Some journeys simply take a little bit longer than others.  

Countdown until...

...Allie, Anna and Emily start Kindergarten - only about two and a half months.

...we take a mini-family vacation  - days away!

...the first summer session at school ends for me - about three weeks!

...our return to Disney  - about two months away!

I took the girls to the local feeding/ petting zoo the other day.  Here are a few pics:







Anna is still afraid of the animals = nopictures of her feeding them!

Picture day - Manitoba Places

Dalnavert Museum home to Sir Hugh John McDonald first premier of Manitoba and the son of Canada's first Prime Minister. It was built in 1885 and is in the style of Queen Anne revival.



Life of Cat

The dog keeps pacing and the click of his toenails on the tile is driving me nuts. What an idiot, every sound he’s up and running to the window. If he is so excited for the people to come home you would think he’d at least know which sounds actually mean they’re back.
Meanwhile I’ve got this wonderfully warm sunbeam to enjoy and he keeps almost stepping on my head.  Maybe he needs a little reminder I’m here. Claws meet tail. Nope that didn’t help now the idiot is chasing his tail….ugh…..only a dog is stupid enough not to realize his tail is attached to his own ass.
 Oww, ok that’s it I’m leaving, warm sunbeam or not I’m not getting trampled by this big buffoon.  Ahh the beds made, the curtains open and it’s just as sunny in here.  There’s a really comfy spot right in the middle, just perfect for a little cat like me.  Time for a cat nap.
Oh come on now dog, I don’t want to wait with you.  He’s got his nose on the edge of the bed staring at me, he hates to be alone and all I want is a few moments of peace and quiet.  Well I’m not moving and he’s not allowed up here, too bad dog.
What is that noise, of great now he’s crying.  Sigh fine dog lets go back to the carpet just stay boy you hear nothing.   Well he’s not very graceful but at least he’s lying down. Ugh big baby, ok here we go a bit of sun right between his paws that’s my spot.
Hmmm actually he’s pretty soft, and warmer than even the sunbeam.  I could sleep here as long as he doesn’t start drooling on my head. That’s a good boy finally think he’s going to sleep which means I can.  Every time they leave for 5 minutes he thinks they aren’t coming back, as is they would abandon us. Doesn’t he realize it’s their job to take care of us, although I think I’m the more deserving and definitely cuter.   

Without fail when our whole family is away we come home to find the cat and dog sleeping together. They rarely ever do it when we are home and I can imagine it results from a chain of thought (if cats think) somewhat similar to this.  It’s always amusing to watch them scramble up and away from each other as if we’ve just caught them in a compromising position, they can’t let us know how much they actually like one another.

Salt of The Earth

I have a bit of an issue with craving salt, as in sometimes I don’t just want something salty to eat but would willingly lick a plate full of salt clean. I do however also realize that giving into that craving would be a bad idea and that no one should actually attempt licking clean a plate of salt. 
I don’t cook or bake with much salt and we eat very little processed foods so I’m not at all worried that I consume too much salt.  I just believe that everything is better in moderation and although I don’t mind indulging I’d rather not get this particular craving quite so often as it often leads to over-indulgence.  
I do often find that a glass of water negates the craving or at least take the edge of it and it happens more often in summer so I think it may have something to do with not having had enough to drink.  If I ever start craving salt I always use it as a reminder to have a drink.
 Every once in awhile though it’s not simply a salt craving but a salty and sweet craving that won’t be sated until I give in.  A peanut cone from Sergeant Sundae or a peanut buster parfait from DQ, chocolate covered pretzels or a bag of M&M’s dumped into a fresh bowl of salted popcorn.
I’m getting hungry here.  I suppose we all have our special weaknesses with food and I know I’m not alone in this particular one.    Well it could certainly be worse, it could be pregnancy cravings. Those ones were fun and interesting to say the least.
The most interesting one I found was a strong craving for pickles, clich├ęd I know yet it was strange for me as I absolutely hate pickles.  One day I even decided that since I was craving them so badly that perhaps my tastes had changed and I might now like them.   As it turned out I still hated them cravings or not.  That craving remained with me until my daughter was born even though I still couldn’t stand the taste of them, funny enough she really does love pickles.
Well right now I’m craving another cup of coffee and that’s one I’m willing to just go with.

Week's Done

Well that picture isn’t Winnipeg, nope it’s Chicago taken at some point this week by my husband who is there for the week.  Despite keeping in touch through messaging, facebook and the like I’m still missing him like crazy although my schedule doesn’t allow for much time to dwell upon it.
This single parenting thing is hard, particularly while we get through the insanity which we seem to face each year as June comes to an end.  This week has been a wee bit crazy with any day not filled with soccer filled with a million errands and things to get done.  
I’m trying to organize and shop for my little one’s birthday party next weekend and our annual July 1st BBQ. The hail we received last weekend means we need a new roof and I’ve had to deal with insurance and roofing companies coming and going.  I’ve also been selling a few items online and have been trying to take care of a few household repairs.  
For the most part everything has gone smoothly with the exception of my oldest getting lost on the way to soccer for her first game this week, and her ride to the far off second game this week starting off with a literal bang as they blew a tire along the way.   
That she got lost surprised me as she has played on this particular field countless times and it isn’t that far from our house.  It worked out and she got there in the end but as a coach having to abandon my youngest and her team to go rescue my oldest made for a harrowing 20 minutes.
All in all it’s been a bit nutty around here. The girls have been great helping me with yard work and remembering their chores but I will be quite happy as will they to see my husband home come Monday.
This weekend although I’ve managed to get most of my things to do done I still have a number of things to take care off.  Saturday and Sunday are already planned out and so tonight I’m doing a girls night.  We’re going to take tonight off from activities shopping and chores to make homemade pizza and cookies, do our nails, watch a movie and just chill out.

100 word prompt, Parks Canada

Riel House
It has been announced that parks Canada is slashing funding to national historic sites and parks across the country. In Manitoba the biggest hits are to Lower fort Garry, Riel house and Riding Mountain National Park.  It is these things our parks and our historic sites and our love of the land in which we live that make Canada and Canadians so very special.  If the government continues to cut out our history, take away our parks, slash funding to the arts, remove environmental protection and cut countless other things that make this country great then what will be left?

Picture Day - Straight between lakes

A very favorite place of mine, the small straight which connects Lake Lulu to Lake Louise in Northwest Ontario.



Just a Prairie Girl

There is nothing to see in the prairie so it’s been said, nothing but an uninterrupted expanse of farmland. Often people question why anyone would want to live here, in the flat expanse where each season has its own bit of harshness.  
Winter is brutally cold, spring brings with it yearly floods, summer is burning hot and in autumn the conditions change from moment to moment impossible to predict.
What brought my ancestors here was the promise of a new life, a new beginning along with thousands of others. They put down roots, they worked the lands and many of these families found success and the new life they had been seeking.
They found friendships and communities that worked together. They saw beauty in this wide open space with its countless lakes, rivers and streams, in the trees scattered amongst the fields and the grain elevators which dot the sky.
I have grown to love the land in which I was born and live. I rejoice in the changing seasons knowing that each day will bring something new. Someday I may leave; the call to see more of the world is there but I know in the end I will always come back.
I’m grateful for those who came before me who taught me to work hard, to help my neighbors and to see the beauty in the nature that surrounds me for endless kilometers.
Because of them I am just a prairie girl and I wouldn’t be anything else.

Hail

This past weekend has been filled with thundershowers, wildly swinging temperatures and some of the biggest hail I’ve ever seen.  From the normal pea size hail that is often seen to gargantuan hunks of ice the size of a frozen tennis ball. Most were about the size of a golf ball and rather damaging.
We happened to be on our way home when the hail began and as the pinging sound of hail grew into bangs it became a little nerve wracking.  We made it home safely albeit a little slower than usual and the hail and rain stopped shortly after.
We went outside afterward to take a look at the hailstones and we knew there would be some big ones but there were some HUGE ones.  Quite literally the size of my palm.  It was too dark out to see what if any damage the house or truck had received and so we waited until morning.
Come morning we looked around the yard, the gazebos canvas top made it although it clearly came close to giving way and needed to be straightened out. The deck and yard was littered in leaves and branches, many flowers have broken stems or are outright flattened but more damage was yet to be seen.
The truck does have numerous dents which will need to be fixed.  Thankfully the car was safely tucked away in the garage and it’s not both vehicles now in need of a repair.  I also realize after seeing the size of hail in our yard that were lucky no glass was cracked on top of the dents.
Our roof also did not fair very well against the hail and numerous shingles have some obvious damage, not sure if it will be enough to claim but a new roof is likely in our near future.  Now the eaves they’re going to need replacing without a shadow of a doubt.  The hail managed to break a few holes right through them.  I know they’re plastic but still that must have been some hailstone.
In the end it was just another storm but this one will take a while to clean up from, if it ever actually stops raining for more than 10 minutes at a time.  


Return of The Bobblehead


I got a couple of early Father's Day gifts on Friday from Allie and Anna.  They made them in school and I love 'em!

 




One in Five Hundred Thousand

My posts, as they have been for the past week or so, will continue to be less frequent for the next few weeks.

I am taking three graduate level courses this shortened summer semester in an effort to complete the MBA program by August.  And the three classes are fairly heavy: Intermediate Accounting, Advanced Corporate Finance and Strategic Management.

Presentations and team projects have been, as expected, a significant part of the program and this semester is no different.  I have to do a 20 - 25 minute case-study presentation next Thursday night.

So...with the time I have NOT doing school work, blogging is not at the top of my list - especially with the spring/summer weather upon us.

I do have some video almost ready, though.  Stay tuned.

Sarah showed me a video clip on Yahoo which is currently trending about a couple in Pennsylvania who had identical triplet (boys).  The doctor says in the video "...one in five hundred thousand chance..."

I guess I'm not sure how or why some of these births make the news and others don't...I said to Sarah that around the time our girls were born, there seemed to be a few that made the news.  But not ours.

Time for bed.  Sarah and I have an extremely rare night out tomorrow night.  One of my nephews is tying the knot.  A local wedding so we will not be staying overnight.  Good thing because Sunday will be a busy day for this family!

Ready for Summer Fun

I’m antsy and ready not only for the upcoming weekend but the beginning of the summer holidays and vacation time.  With only two more weeks of both soccer and school days it isn’t long before lazy evenings gathered around the bonfire, wandering the parks and weekends at the beach become the norm.
The last few weeks of June are always quite packed, windups and exams, tournaments, birthday parties, end of school celebrations and BBQ’s and lots and lots of planning.  I’m planning for summer vacations, day excursions, and all sorts of special little events.  My plans are filling my mind today and I’m quite ready to kick off the summer with a little bit of fun and I’ve got quite a list of options.
From picnics, to carnivals, stampedes, weekends away and countless day trips my list of things to do will greatly exceed the time available but we’re going to try our hardest to pack as much into the summer as possible and we are starting first thing tomorrow morning.

Space Wolf, Crazy birds and more...






The First Law of Motion

The first law of motion is that which is in motion tends to stay in motion and that which is at rest tends to stay at rest.  Some kind of force is needed to change the motion or lack thereof. 
The force needed to bring a self imposed challenge; a dream or a wish into motion is what takes the most force.  Although that starting force is often hard to find once it is in motion it will likely stay in motion and so the biggest challenge in life, is not in completing a self-imposed challenge but in beginning it.   

Picture Day - Everyday Wildlife

 
We certainly see a lot of wildlife around our yard, the deer are an everyday thing, as are countless small birds and squirrels.  Rabbits we see fairly often and if what I saw from my living room window this past weekend is any indication baby rabbits will be around soon as well.  We also have a pair of mallard ducks living in our ditch. I suspect they may be the same ones from last year as each year as we only ever see a single pair and always around the same spot. The Canadian geese have also taken up residence across the city and it seems there are goslings everywhere. Many other creatures are regularly spotted but too fast to snap a picture of or only come out at night, red foxes, racoons, owls and even the occasional peacock which has wandered away from the zoo.    

 

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Interruption.

Tonight's post has been interrupted by my class and Boston Celtics playoff action.

GO CELTICS!

Exploring different styles...






Truth is Stranger than Fiction

I’ve often heard the term truth is stranger than fiction and so I put forth several stories of odd injuries two are truth one is fiction, can you tell which one is fictional?
Story One:
Many people dislike mornings and for me those first few groggy moments often lead to small accidents stubbed toes, dropped items and one memorable morning even a broken nose. In my bedroom across from the foot of the bed was the dresser with the alarm clock sitting atop. One morning the sound of the alarm blaring through my sleep addled brain led me to crawl to the end of the bed reach over the distance between bed and dresser while on hands and knees and miss.  Having apparently slept on my one arm it was numb and so when I reached out with the other hand leaving my numb arm to take all of my weight it collapsed.  The other arm which was reaching for the alarm caught up on the dresser and so with no hands to break my fall I landed on the thin carpet over our cement floors nose first with a distinctive crunch.  I’ve snored ever since.
 Story Two:
For the last few months of my senior year in high school I also worked as a cook full time.  Going to school all day and then to work all evening often meant that by the end of my shift I would do things without thinking about the safe way to do them.  One evening I’d been asked to put out some rat traps by the back door before I closed up as something which had so far eluded the smaller mouse traps even stealing the bait off them had been finding its way into the storeroom during the night.   So being tired after a long day I set the trap and then, after having set it mind you, attempted to bait it.  Now if you’ve ever had a standard mouse trap snap closed on your finger you will know it’s not a pleasant experience. A rat trap is simply a bigger and stronger version which is perfectly capable of snapping a human finger.  Which it did to me as it snapped closed on my index finger.  The resulting panic to remove the trap also scraped most of the skin of that finger.  After weeks in a finger splint it remains crooked to this day and I will never use a rat trap again.

Story Three:
Children don’t always make the best choices when it comes to safety such as walking in a construction site barefoot.  A friend and I were walking through the biggest construction site we had ever seen having a grand old time until one miss-step landed my foot on a board which had a nail facing up on it.  I suddenly found myself looking down at the tip of a nail coming straight through the middle of my foot the shiny and now reddened tip peeking through the top.  My instant reaction was to yank my foot upwards and off the nail.  The resulting hole began leaking blood although less than one would expect from a through and through hole in the center of their foot.  Knowing we had been playing in an area we were not allowed to play in I snuck my way home and to the bathroom where I cleaned off my foot covering the top and bottom of the hole with band aids not telling anyone and hoping it would heal.  I’m sure my parents noticed the band aids I wore on my foot for the next few weeks but they never did find out that I’d impaled my foot on a nail and it did heal although a mark remains there to this day.       

The Grass Isn't Greener

Everywhere you look in our neighborhood there are beautiful green lawns, well maintained and blooming gardens against the backdrop of natural beauty found in the forest and wooded areas which can be found in patches all over.  It is nature at its absolute finest a perfect mix of both tamed and untamed.
That is until you get to one particular house on our street.  I won’t say specifically which neighbors but trust me it’s not hard to tell as they have apparently decided that any yard maintenance at all is too much work.
They have never been much into gardening and while I don’t see a problem with that after all some people just don’t care for gardening they have at least cut the grass on occasion. As each successive summer has come about their yard has deteriorated more and more. This year their yard has been particularly bad and now rather than just a minor nuisance it has become an eyesore.
They are young perfectly healthy adults who just don’t seem to care. In a neighborhood which focuses on outdoor life and prides itself on natural beauty it sticks out like a sore thumb.  The grass has now reached about two feet in height and is made up almost entirely of weeds.  I’ve always tried to just accept the nearby mess and tell myself that it only serves to make our own yard look that much better. 
Except it really doesn’t.   
Since they have apparently decided not to make any efforts at all to control their weeds or even trim their grass more and more seeds fly from their yard into neighboring yards making everyone  else’s attempts to keep their own lawn healthy and weed free that much harder.  
I’m finding it particularly frustrating this year because we have been putting in quite a bit of effort to get our yard into good shape having done a complete over-hall of our backyard.  We also are no longer able to buy the products we’ve previously used for defeating weeds so that has also been a bit more of a challenge.
Why they can’t at least run a lawn mower around the yard every couple of weeks is beyond my comprehension.  I don’t care if their yard isn’t perfect after all most yards including ours are not but still…….well there is that one neighbor actually.
Anyways our neighborhood is blessed with so much natural beauty and it’s quite a shame for it to be hampered like this.  I’ve considered while cutting our lawn just walking my way over and doing theirs as well or anonymously gifting them a bottle of weed and feed and hoping they get the point.  I would at this point actually say something to them about it but how to go about it tactfully eludes me.
So I'll just rant my way through my frustrations and keep hoping that sooner rather than later that they'll actually pull out their lawn mower one these days. Hopefully they don’t read my blog and well if they do, cut your lawn please.

A Commencement, some anger and a little bit of vomit.

Sarah was right in saying that my attending the graduation ceremony on Friday was somewhat anti-climactic.  I finish up the MBA program in August so there is still some work to be done.

I'm glad I went to the graduation however.  And even more happier that Sarah, Allie, Anna, Emily and Sarah's mom Sheila were there too.  Sure, the process of bringing three 5 year-old girls and having them sit through an event for "adults" was a trying experience.  But, they got to see the place where their daddy has been going to for MANY nights after work.  The girls got to see the place where daddy was while they were being tucked away to bed.  The place where daddy was when Allie would say "I miss daddy" to Sarah in a boo-whoo kind of voice!  Thanks for coming guys!

Friday (the day of the graduation) was nice weather-wise too.  Saturday was a wash-out, though.  We stayed home most of the day as a family with the exception of a trip to the local Target for a mini-shopping spree followed by bread sticks and pizza from the in-house Pizza Hut they have.

In other news...Sarah & I spent most of today following Allie & Emily around with a puke bucket.  No Anna, though (yet) - thank God.  They are all sleeping soundly right now - Sarah & I hope a restful night of sleep will help their resilient little bodies bounce back in the morning.

Even though the girls' tummies were upset, we were able to keep our plans of visiting Abigail today.  She should be turning 6 tomorrow.  They all picked out a balloon for Abigail.  Allie a pink dolphin.  Emily a butterfly and Anna picked a Snoopy balloon.  We also cleaned things up a bit and planted some nice flowers for our little angel.

While we were at the cemetery today I kept hearing an air horn but didn't give it much thought until Sarah told me it was coming from some kids who were "hanging out" at the cemetery.  I was not happy. AT ALL. Unfortunately both Sarah & I left the cemetery filled with anger.  We actually stopped the car and I told the young man (punk) in so many words to wise up.

A mass is being held for Abigail in the morning.  Our little angel.  Taken from our arms but not our herarts. 

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Soccer - Love and Hate

I tried playing soccer one year when I was young and I absolutely, completely hated it.  Despised it didn’t want anything to do with it and frankly was quite terrible at it. I didn’t get the rules, I wasn’t a great runner and I was such a klutz that if I actually managed to touch the ball I was more likely to step on it rather than kick it. After that one try I vowed I would never have anything to do with soccer again.
That’s why years later I’m so surprised to find I have such a genuine love for the game.  I certainly never expected to begin first assistant coaching, now coaching and being asked to join the association’s board.  For someone who once hated the game I seem to be involved in an awful lot of soccer.
When my oldest first asked to try soccer in kindergarten I had my doubts but said ok. I may have hated the game myself but I firmly believe in letting my kids determine for themselves what they enjoy.  That first year I will admit that I didn’t expect her to enjoy it, in fact I expected it to go over about as well as it had with me.
Well I was wrong she loved it and she was looking forward to playing the next year. Instead the area we lived in was unable to put together a soccer program and she wasn’t able to play that year or the next. By the time we moved I thought she had forgotten about soccer but she hadn’t.  She was ecstatic to find a well developed soccer program and begged me and her dad to sign her up and so of course that’s what we did.
She’s played every year since and now plays year round both indoor and outdoor and over the years as I‘ve watched her grow as a player I’ve become more and more fascinated by the game.  I’ve learnt the rules I’ve cheered her on and I’ve began to get involved.
Then my youngest began to ask if she could play, hoping that it wasn’t an attempt to emulate her sister we signed her up and discovered that she too seems to love it. So when this year’s outdoor season began and my youngest needed a coach I stepped into the role and I realized that I actually do enjoy the game just as much as my girls do.
I suppose it helps that my kids not only love the game but that while my youngest is still developing her basic skills my oldest has begun to really excel at the game.  Watching your child succeed at something they have a passion for is rewarding in and of itself. She plays goalkeeper arguably one of the most challenging and dangerous positions to play and she does it well.
For someone who started out loathing soccer I’ve made quite the turn around, although I still occasionally step on the ball now I can actually kick it to.