Well, here’s a more recent photo of the little buggers. Cute right?
Just know that I miss you all today.
and the potatoes.
and leftover turkey.
Here’s a great shot of our boys (plus their friend) on the way in to SF to see the Blue Angels. This was the most peaceful they were for the entire day!
Over the weekend we went to see the Canadian Snowbirds and the Blue Angels fly for Fleet Week. It was an amazing show from both sets of pilots. The Blue Angels are amazing and really put on an awesome show! I must say, I am really starting to appreciate some American traditions (it only took 8 years!). If you have access to my flickr account, there are more pictures there. Basically, it’s the same planes, in different formations – all under an amazing California blue sky.
I wake up at about 5:15 am every morning. My morning is regimented and completely full from the time I wake up to the time we leave for work. Every morning, the cats meow at me – then run to their dish… as if to say “hello, human with the opposable thumbs… you need to feed me.” Even though there is food in their dish.. they can see the bottom of the dish so of course they are meowing for more food.
If you’ve seen bristol (AKA fattie-bo-ballatie) you’ll know he’s not starving to death. Trust me.
I’d love to stay and chat, but I’m busy getting the cat hair off my clothes.
Michael and I went to the State Fair on Saturday. I have never had such an amazing time at a fair before! I watched a cow in labour, I saw chicks hatching from their eggs, I saw baby kittens and a ton of rabbits! Man, it really makes me want a farm! I spent a fair amount of time on farms while I was growing up, but I don’t think I really appreciated it. In fact, my parents tell a hilarious story about me when I was about 3 years old. My uncle just received a “batch” of chicks and someone accidentally let the cage open; he had about 300 chicks scattered all over the farm. My uncle swore all the time. Dirty dirty words. I guess he called the chicks the other C-word and I ended up trying to call all the chicks back using that word. I know my mother… I bet she was mortified! I was a good talker! hee
While watching the cow go through contractions, a woman approached me and said “wouldn’t you just love to give birth in front of 200 people?” Um, yes, funny you should ask – but I would have LOVED that! Maybe NEXT time I’ll have an audience. A huge, adoring audience.
The “announcer” kept reminding the crowd to use their “quiet” voices because the cow wouldn’t be able to give birth while everyone was making a lot of noise. Did she realize we were at the fair? With a roller coaster? And about a million screaming children? If the cow needed quiet, why didn’t they find a barn for her? What is she, a movie star? She can’t give birth in front of a crowd? Honestly, I don’t blame her. I didn’t need quiet, but I doubt I could have performed as expected with a roller coaster in the background. The woman that spoke with me had her son and niece with her. All three women were mesmerized by the cow in labour. The boy (age 5) was busy making gagging sounds and holding his nose! I told him to go sit by Michael on the bench because Michael couldn’t take the sights either! At one point the cow was contracting and pushing at the same time, so stuff came out of her bum (we’ve all been there ladies) and he was on point gagging and rolling his eyes all while holding his nose! Yet, he did not leave the scene. Fascinating! She never ended up having the calf while I was there, Michael was so impatient and wanted to see a movie – so we had to leave.
In order to really freak my boss out, I had a lady put a Mehndi design on my hand. Everyone is so cultural here at work, I’ve been asked 10 times if I’ve been to an Indian wedding! It looks amazing and it is so pretty that I cannot stop looking at it. I teased Michael that I loved it so much, I was thinking of heading down to have it tattooed on permanently! He almost died.
Price of Mehndi design: $20
Prince of new Tattoo: $250
Scaring your husband half to death: Priceless
I swear, unless I write it down – it completely flies out of my brain. I think it’s because the boys are gone, my brain (and body) have become quite lazy lately. I haven’t done a decent load of laundry in 3 weeks and can barely get my butt off the couch to load the dishwasher. I am finding that I am more organized when the boys are here. They force me to do stuff that I don’t like doing – but I do it because I’m their mommy.
Speaking of mommy’s… my mom emailed me and said Brody ate a hot dog, a hamburger AND baked beans at a BBQ they went to over the weekend. If you know Brody, you know this is an amazing feat! This is a child who can last for 3 days on a fruit loop and a cheerio. Not a bowl… one. I am hoping that my parents have cured Brody of his unwillingness to eat. What can I say? The kid is exactly like me. I remember spending a summer at my great uncle’s house – his wife wasn’t a good cook. We had things like boiled chicken. I fed myself with vegetables from the garden. I had eaten so many peas that my (#2) was green! My trip to their house was cut short by a death in the family… I almost cried with relief when I saw my parents! It wouldn’t have been so bad had my uncle lived in town – but he lived on a farm. It was a nightmare. Not the trip… just the food part. That was the summer I spent haulin bales of hay. I now know why no one messes with a farm kid.
I spent the weekend lounging around. I had a paper due and a final exam for my math elective. Did I ever mention how much I hate elective classes? I think you are forced to take them so you’ll have something to complain about, something that will bring your GPA down to a whole number. I had a pretty good GPA before this stupid math class, but considering I didn’t get good marks – I’ll probably be put in the special ed class for the rest of my courses. I don’t really like math. I do like that I know how to do some stuff – mathwise – but I can do without the actual class. I wrote my paper (in my health care class) with my eyes closed. It was on Quality of Care and I just spent the past 3 years supporting Care programs at work. Uh… only 700 words? But I have like 10,000 more I could put down… you know, if you needed it.
My close girlfriend T had her gorgeous baby over the weekend. Her husband gave me the low-down but I’m waiting for the ‘real’ story. I’ll give her a few days to recover, considering she gave birth to a toddler. This was the biggest baby! He weighed in over 10 lbs and close to 2 feet long! goodness! I joked with Michael that the baby was probably already eating red meat with a knife and fork. Might I mention that he had the most perfectly coiffed hair for a newborn. It was very CEO. He’s a beautiful baby and I’m so proud of her. If you are reading – you need to call!
So that’s been about it. Other than we are painting the boys room and taking their bunk beds apart. The new design will be awesome! I can think it out… without being forced to put everything back together all at once! We are painting horizontal stripes on the wall! I’m hoping for “level” lines.. but at this point I’ll take what I can get!
Obviously I had forgotten how sore a body could be after a two hour horse ride. I feel like I pulled a bus in a competition yesterday. My sciatica is killing me and my things thighs are pulsing with pain. I forgot what it felt like to ride a horse… I especially forgot about the day after the ride! Sitting in a car for 8 hours isn’t helping – so I’m trying to loosen my muscles while Michael makes a marathon trip from Idaho Falls to Reno. They have a Cabela’s store there and he’s bound and determined to make it to the store before closing time.
It is currently 98 degrees and that’s about how old my body feels… My dilemma is that I really hate the gym – but I obviously cannot continue my life with a body that is aging as fast as mine is. Ok, I’ll stop whining. We are going to spend a couple nights in Reno. Neither of us have ever stayed there and I don’t want to be home just yet. We have about 161 miles left before I can book a massage and a pedicure (HA). Between the sore muscles and my sciatica – I deserve a massage! We spent about 1/2 an hour in the hot tub last night hoping it would ease the pain in our bodies from riding horses… but it was too hot for both of us and we couldn’t find a thermostat to turn the heat down. Needless to say, the spa didn’t help – so I’m booking a massage. The hard decision will be deciding on the length of the massage. heh.
When we left Alberta it did not take us long to get to Bozeman, Montana. It is beautiful there. Exactly the type of place that brings you peace and serenity. We stayed the night at the Super 8 and drove around after dinner checking out the local scenery. It really is a beautiful place, lots of trees, mountains and “granola” people. You’ve seen them before, they are tanned from being outside all summer, most have dreadlocks, all wearing some technical gear. We had dinner at Famous Dave’s BBQ. It was really really good – but that may be because we’d eaten fast food (blech) for the past 5 days. No no, it was good.
As we were driving to Coutts (the border crossing) I really had a hard time because I felt I didn’t fit in to Canada anymore. Which is tough for me because I’ve never really felt at home in California, I always relied on Alberta for that “home” feeling. Then driving out of the province I became really sad because I realized that I’ve been gone too long and nothing seemed familiar to me anymore. I walked into the CIBC in Milk River to exchange my Canadian money back into US currency and almost started crying.
It’s a hard feeling for me to express with words. I almost feel like a part of me has died. The Canadian part that I love so much is slowly deteriorating and that makes me really sad. I’m married to a man who doesn’t want to live outside the US…
Anyway, we drove to Gardiner, MT today and went horseback riding in the mountains. It was amazing. Michael’s bum is really sore and the last ½ hour of the trip was almost unbearable. I haven’t been on a horse in about 15 years (maybe less) so to get back in the saddle (HAH HAA) and head out for a 2 hour tour was daunting. I always seem to get the horse that wants to be back at the barn and had a few instances of uncertainty with my horse. Lucky for me, the horse was a ‘he’ so I was able to sweet talk him into being a good pony. Mares and I do not get along – so I was thankful for boys.
The views from the saddle were amazing. We even enjoyed a light rain midway through the ride. Michael was in heaven! The guide Lydia was great; she’d just graduated high school and was heading to college in August. Her dog “shepherd” was great too, a friendly collie cross that enjoyed five to six – 2 hour hikes into the hills per day. While the horses were being saddled, the mules on the farm broke free and the owner Ralph sent the dogs out to round ‘em up. Shepherd stayed by my side with his ears perked – waiting to hear if he’d be needed. I could tell he loved his life – so nice to see in a dog!
Michael and I agreed that we’d love to live in Bozeman, MT. Finally, a place we both agreed upon as a potential homestead. (look at me talking all cowboy). I hate being so far away from my family, I really dislike California and am wanting a better childhood for my boys than California can provide. Of course, every Canadian who reads this will say “better than California? Never!” Because as a child, everyone I knew felt that California was the golden land. I know better.
I got a bit of sun today and believe it or not – I am not sunburned! If I’d spent hours out in the sun in California, I would have been the color of a tomato! We are heading into Idaho Falls for the night, Michael and I need to spend some time in the Spa tub after our horse trip today. We might not be able to walk tomorrow if we don’t! Michael took lots of pictures of me on the horse, lots of pictures of my back! Ha! Lydia also took a photo of both of us on the horses, so I’ll try to post that tonight. I keep forgetting that I’m still in school and have homework due today. Sigh.
I’m also trying to get Michael to not rush us through these precious days we have off. He seems bound and determined to race home at the speed of light – but I need to enjoy a few days off… away from everyone and everything.
The visit with my family was very short. They had a plan and we wanted to start making the journey back to California. Bob was going to take all the kids to Drumheller to see the dinosaur museum. Initially, my mom and dad were going to take Harper with them but she wasn’t having that at all! She’s a lot like me, both of us inherited our opinions and attitudes from the same person (ahem…). She’s got an irish temper and the red hair to match. She wants what she wants when she wants it. 🙂 I may know someone just like that… (ahem).
I was fine leaving the boys, Michael was a little choked up. I knew this trip would be amazing for everyone involved and I put my faith in the fun and adventure they were about to embark upon. Michael was being a typical daddy… selfish and wanting his boys by his side. I understand that. In fact, since we’ve left the boys I’ve noticed more kids and pondered past memories of our boys. I’m acting like they are gone forever. Anyway, we all took off – the boys headed towards dinosaur (and little boy) heaven and us toward Montana. I was fine.. until we almost got to the border. More on that later.
As usual, the visit was too short and I spent most of the time inside my head wishing we’d move home to be closer to them. Closer to my brother and the kids. Closer to my parents and grandparents. Even thinking about it now chokes me up. We enjoyed a greasy meal from KFC, organic jelly beans and fruit loops. I’m getting closer and closer to mother of the year. That night, the boys and my brother decided the boys would sleep in the trailer and we’d head to the motel. Harper decided she’d sleep in the middle between the two boys. I cannot even imagine what that night was like for them. Evan and Harper are still at the stage where they move around a lot at night – Brody sleeps like a log. I’m sure many letters of the alphabet were made that night with the three kids each forming one part of a letter. The letter H comes to mind… and W. 🙂
Dad and I spent the evening together, doing something we both love… gambling! Of course, I risk the 100’s of spam messages trying to post by saying the “g” word – but I’ll take my chances. Michael likes to play cards as well – but he was too tired to come with us. Mom isn’t a very good gambler… playing her 20 dollars then wanting to leave. We rolled back to the hotel at 2:30!!! I was on vacation!