Category Archives: everyday

100 Words

Mel from Stirrup Queens has a site called Bridges.

Bridges is an awareness consortium of compassionate bloggers who are using writing to educate, tell a story, bring awareness, and build community.

Today, September 11th, marks the 7th anniversary of one of the most horrific events in history. Mel has asked for our experiences of that day in just 100 words. I had a hard time describing that day for me in just 100 words but once done I realized 100 words was all I needed. Here is my story.

Sgt was in the Immediate Reaction Unit; my heart sank with the knowledge that soon I would be getting a call from him telling me he had to go. The call came, his voice was a mixture of emotions but the one that stands out the most for me was the excitement. 14 years he had been training for this. 12 years I had been telling myself this day could come. People ask me how I do it, love a soldier. I always reply: “It’s not what he does; it’s who he is.” I’m damn proud of who he is.

Every half hour today, from midnight to midnight, there will be a 100 word memory of that day. 55 powerful stories. Please stop by and read each and every one.

You won’t be disappointed.

Murphy’s Law or Why I Hate Deployments

Sgt left last week for a sandy place I like to call “the ‘ghan”. Sgt like to call it “the sandstorms, duststorms, people who hate you shithole.”

Everyone else calls it Afghanistan.

This is not a regular deployment for us. We don’t need another one of those, four is enough thanks. He’s gone for a short trip to deliver a product to some of his co-workers, set it up, show them how it works and how to repair it if it breaks down. I have no idea what this product is because he can’t discuss this part of his job and I’m OK with that.

Needless to say the day, the DAY, he left things started to break. Or get loose. Or get sick. It started Monday morning when I figured the carpet needed to have the vacuum run over it. With two St. Bernards it’s something that should be done everyday, sometimes twice a day, and I had neglected it over the weekend. I plug in the cleaner, hit the switch and immediately smell burning rubber. “This can’t be good.” I think and sure enough it’s not. After taking apart the head I find the reason behind the burnt rubber smell.

Burnt rubber.

The rubber thing that makes the bristles go around (yes that’s the technical term) is in two pieces because it has melted. No big deal, I have a replacement rubber thing. After replacing the rubber thing, cleaning out the bristles and putting it all back together I sit back and look proudly at my accomplishment. Who needs a man around to fix things huh?

Then I turn it on.

Strangely I smell burning rubber again. Quickly I shut it off, gather up Graeme and head into the Canadian Tire in town to buy a new vacuum.

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One of our lambs got out of the pen yesterday. It so desperately wanted to be with it’s mother it popped over a 4 foot gate. No small feat for this husky fellow.

I needed to get this lamb back in with the others so we can finish them on grains before they head off to market but he seems to know of this plan and refuses to cooperate with me. I left him with the ewes for the evening and told Nic that tonight we had to get him back into the pen.

Nic takes this sort of thing seriously and refuses to give up. He’s a tenacious teen. Just what you need when you are trying to catch a lamb that doesn’t want to be caught. Not what you need when he wants to got to a bush party with his friends. (The teen, not the lamb.)

It took Nic about ten minutes to get this lamb and it was luck that caught it. The flock was heading back out into the pasture and Nic spooked the lamb. Instead of running to catch up with the others this brilliant creature thought it would be safer to hide in the barn. The barn where all the other lambs were being kept.

Plain old shit luck, it’s the only way to catch one on it’s own.

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Sgt’s due home in a few days and I can guarantee that before he gets here one of us with become sick or injured in some way.

What do you think the ailment/injury will be Internets? And who will it affect? I’m taking wagers now and the closest guess will get a little something.

One Year

On August 3 we celebrated Graemes first birthday.

It’s hard to believe that one year has come and gone. It feels like Graeme has always been with us. He has been in my heart for as long as I can remember so maybe in some way he always has been.

 Newborn

This photo was taken on the day before the packers/movers were coming to move our family 200kms. Graeme was just 2 days old. We were posted once again and Graeme took it all in stride. Infact he slept through most of the hustle and bustle.

Birthday Boy

Before the cake …

Mmmmm Cake 

and after cake.

How quickly the year has gone by.

A Picture is Worth a Thousand Words

Thank you all for your comments on my last post. I did send out an email to the Donor Sibling Registry user basically stating that for Graemes privacy I did not feel comfortable sharing photos but would be happy to share developement milestones, medical info, etc. I also offered to send her the childhood photo of our donor if she did not already have it.

When Sgt and I started the whole diui process we had several criteria we were looking for in our donor, looks was not top of the list. We had a list of about 20 candidates. From that list we narrowed it down quickly by looking at the medical histories of each donor and his family. If the donor had any type of pet or food allergy he was crossed out. (Seasonal allergies were not an issue because I suffer from mild seasonal allergies.) If there were serious family health issues, again he was taken out.

Once we were down to about 8 donors we checked to see if there was a childhood photo. If there was none he was crossed off the list. From the 8 we were now down to 4. Our first choice had just two vials left so he was eliminated. Our second choice had 2 confirmed pregnancies and a son of his own. His photo looked very similar to Sgt as a boy and he matched all of our stats ie. height, weight, hair colour/texture, eye colour and blood type.

Unfortunately I miscarried twice while using this donor.

Our third choice had everything the first donor had except his blood type did not match either me (A+) or Sgt (O+). After a brief talk Sgt and I agreed that we planned to be open about using a donor if we had a successful pregnancy so having a different blood type* should not be an issue. We did not want to keep it a secret and have him come home from Grade 10 science class wondering why his blood type was different, who his ‘real daddy’ was and was his mama a ho.

*It was a good thing we had that frank discussion before using our donor because Graemes blood type (AB+) does not match anyone in the family.

What would you do?

I received and email the other day from another Donor Sibling Registry user. She asked if I would share photos of Graeme with her because she’s thinking about using our donor.

I haven’t emailed her back yet because I will not be sharing photos but I do want to know what qualities she is looking for in her donor. Is she basing her choice on how the donor offspring look or is that  secondary? If she is basing it soley on looks then I personally think she needs to do a bit more thinking before choosing.

If you have a donor conceived child would you share photos with someone wanting to know more about the donor? 

Show and Tell

Show and Tell

Today I thought I’d share one of my favorite things about summer.

Sheets

I love the smell of laundry that has been line dried. In our old home I did not have a clothesline. Our yard was too small to put one up so I would resort to hanging items out on our deck on a fold-up drier. Although it helped save me $$ on our electic bill every month it just wasn’t the same as hanging everything out on a traditional line.

When I’m out in the sunshine hanging out laundry I think of the women in the past and how many, many years ago an entire day would be dedicated to washing. If the women had daughters they would be kept home from school to help with the chore unless you were one of the wealthy and could send out your items to a place in the city.

There were a large number of laundries in cities because of the importance of keeping linen white, but most women did laundry at home and it was backbreaking labor. Clothes had to be soaked, boiled and beaten, then rinsed and wrung out by hand, and dried in the fresh air. Washboards and sticks made doing the laundry a little easier, but it was still a very time-consuming task. Leftover soapy water was given to the poor, because soap was still too expensive for most people. In addition to the regular laundry, a “Grand Wash” took place twice a year. It was a symbolic ritual, lasting three days. Some say that that it represented Hell, Purgatory, and Paradise. The “Grand Wash” was a symbol of purification, the triumph of clean over unclean.

Because laundry day was such a huge undertaking clothing was only washed once every two or three months. Could you imagine if we only laundered that often? I want to hug my Maytag when I think of those poor ladies.

At the end of a long day nothing is better than crawling into bed and drifting off to the scent of sheets that have dried in the sunshine knowing that I did not have to spend and entire day (or three!) to enjoy them.

How to Catch a Baby Take 1

First let me say how much I am loving Mel’s Show and Tell! I’ve found a huge list of blogs to add to Bloglines and take time away from all of those important things I have to do. Like raising kids and cooking dinner.

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Sunday the boys thought it would be wise to try and “capture” Graeme in a trap.

Love Ewe

Life has a strange way of getting in the way sometimes. Every morning I wake up and think “Ill get a post up today.” and before I know it it is 9:30 pm and I’m struggling to keep my eyes open. I don’t know how some people manage to get by on little sleep. I am not one of those people.

Graeme is now nine months old. Nine months! How did that happen? Time is flying by us at amazing speed. For 6 weeks he’s been pulling himself up and crusing the furniture and walls. He is close to walking now. He’s working on perfecting his pincer grasp and loves to yell at everyone.

Graeme and the ladies

Three weeks ago we brought home 10 pregnant ewes to live in our back garden. We should be seeing lambs any day now. Our favorite part of every day is heading out back to check on them. Rain or shine out we go. Graeme bounces with excitement while getting his shoes and hat on and will shout at me if I’m not moving fast enough. Once we get out to the barn area he stands against the fencing and shouts HEY at the ladies. HEY is his favorite thing to say. Mama and Dada rarely escape his lips but HEY is very popular.

For several weeks now Graeme has been getting up to nurse at 4 am. I wondered what happened to my sleeping angel-boy but realized he was waking up because he was hungry. When his latest teeth started coming in there were three nights I was up every hour. EVERY HOUR people! Even as a newborn he wasn’t up every hour. Sleep depravation is a horrible thing no wonder they use it as torture. I spent my days walking into things and mummbling incoherantly. Pleasant.

A few weeks ago Sgt interviewed for a job in Ottawa. His 20 years with the military is creeping up and he is looking into his options. At this point we are both tired of the lifestyle we have been living for almost 18 years and want to put that part of who we are behind us and move forward. I had a huge post composed in my head about the inner struggle I was having about this big change and once again sleep won that round. That happens when you’re surviving on a few hours of rack a day. I hope to post my feelings about it one day soon but for now Graeme and I are headed upstairs to grab some lunch.

Break

I’ve uploaded a whack (really now … what is a whack? is it like a gaggle?) of photo’s in the Flickr album. Some of them make me laugh, some make me sigh and all make me wish time would stand still for a little while.

We’re heading out for a few days during the spring break. Not that it looks anything like spring around here right now.

We are off to a friends farm to help get the sheep into the barn for sheering. I haven’t done any sheering yet and I’m really looking forward to it. Our ewes should be here the second week of May, just a few weeks before the lambs are born so I need to know how to sheer them before the births. Just like trimming the hedge before childbirth. Ha ha.

This break is just what our family needs right now.

See you in a few Internets.