Monday, December 24, 2007

ZOEY

I've posted before about our dogs that we got when we lived in BC. Floyd was a black lab, total spaz, goofy, and loving. He died this past summer. It was very hard for all of us, we got Floyd the same day we took possession of our house in BC. A few months later, we got Zoey. She's half-wolf (both parents were half-wolf, I'm not really sure what that makes her). Zoey is a beautiful dog, very timid, doesn't like man-made stuff, and an excellent watch-dog. She's tiny for a wolf-cross, only about 65-70 lbs. Since Scott was taking the girls for a week over the break to visit his family a few hours from Toronto, I asked if I could take Zoey. It works out well for all of us. I'm not all alone, Scott doesn't have to worry about her when they are away, and the girls know that both Zoey and I are going to keep each other company. I thought that Scott was going to bring Zoey on Boxing Day. He told me that a couple of days ago. He shows up today to get the girls, and who does he have with him? Zoey. That's great, I'm happy about that. Problem is, he didn't give me any time to get the house ready for a dog. He also told me that he 'just' ran out of food. Great. The girls left and thank goodness our grocery store is open until 6 tonight. I went and got Zoey some food and treats. She is THE pickiest eater I have EVER seen. I got a couple of different foods for her, but I also know that she loves 'people' food best. In BC, when we fed the dogs, Floyd would gobble his up within a minute and Zoey would take an hour to eat her food. That's just how she is.
Another small problem is my sister and her family who live next door. My sister and her business partner own my house and she's told me any time I have asked that we are NOT allowed to have pets. When she finds out that Zoey is here, she's going to flip. Thing is, I don't really care. They have pets (2 cats), that's fine. If my sister finds out, I'll just deal with it at the time. I will be honest with her and tell her that I didn't want to be all alone, and Scott could not leave her alone for more that a day or two. I can also tell her that this is a bad time of the year for me...it was 2 years ago that I was at my 'bottom' and I was introduced to AA. It is a hard time for me. I have come a long way, I know that, but it does scare me when I think about it. Part of my 'bottom' was knowing that I was alone for a week over the holidays. I enjoy being alone, I do, but it's nice to know that I have some company while the girls are gone.
Anyway, I'm very happy to have Zoey here with me. She's a good dog and I missed her. If I get my digital camera working any time soon, I'll take pictures and post them.

Saturday, December 22, 2007

Happy Holidays!

Happy Holidays to my friends in Blogland. Not 'Merry Christmas', 'Happy Holidays'. It's against my religion to say 'Merry Christmas' and those who do say it offend me.
Michelle, I'm joking!! Merry Christmas AND Happy Holidays!
I have taken a bit of a break from writing this blog. It's not that I'm tired of it, I really didn't have anything new to say. Life is busy, work is busy, home is busy, rush rush rush. I've been reading other blogs and trying to comment when I can, but haven't had the energy or new thoughts for a post.
Poor me...I'm going to be all alone from x-mas eve until New Year's eve. My babies are going with their father for an entire week. All alone.
I have all of next week of work, exept I will go in for a couple of days on my own time. That means I likely won't get there before noon. During the week I'm up before 6 and at work around 8:15, after dropping the girls off at daycare. Weekends are my time to sleep, especially when the girls are not with me. Originally, Scott asked me if he could take the girls for x-mas. Since I'm Jewish, it doesn't really matter to me. The girls and I had our Hanukkah with my family. It was great, they got tons of stuff. I told Scott he could pick the girls up x-mas eve, around 4pm. He is going to Chatham, about 3 hours from Toronto, to visit his family and stay with his sister and her family. Since next weekend is his anyway, I told him that they could stay with him on the Thurs as well. He's taking them Tues and Wed, then has Fri-Sun, that made sense to keep them Thurs. I asked him to bring them back Sun afternoon. Then I found out that I had to work on the Mon, Dec 31. I asked for the day off, but that's a 'no'. I asked Scott if he wanted the extra day, to bring them back on Mon afternoon. Now, that's the plan. Although it sucks that then entire time I'm off work the girls will be with him, it feels good that I'm doing something good for them.
Christmas night, I have been invited to my ex-brother in law's for dinner. My sister's ex husband invites my sister, their kids, my mom and her 'friend', and me (plus my kids if I have them). There's an entire soap opera right there. My sister's ex is gay, he has a boyfriend who lives in San Fransisco. Yep, soap opera.
Kids are yelling for me. I will try to post later.

Thursday, November 22, 2007

A lovely work day...NOT!

I often wonder where I fit in, in my family, at work, and life in general. It's not in a 'poor me, nobody likes me', but rather a feeling that sometimes it wouldn't matter if I was there or not. I know that's not the case with my daughters, they need me as much as I need them.
At work, I've sort of developed or created my own position there. There are the lawyers, the assistants, and me. There are 3 lawyers and 2 assistants. The assistants were friends before they started to work together at our firm. Part of the problem is that my 'space' is in the back. Not really out of the way, but more separate than the other people. I don't hear the conversations and jokes that occur with the others. Most of the time, I don't really care. I've got my own work to do and I'm not distracted by other people talking.
There is one assistant, 'A', who I'm not totally fond of, and I think the feeling is mutual. We tolerate each other, and help each other when we need to. Because the 2 assistants ('A' and 'K')are friends, conversations often get hushed when I walk up to them. 'K' is pregnant and has about 3 weeks left at work. 'A' very recently got engaged. For the most part, we keep our personal lives just that, personal. We know basic stuff about each other, but it's not a gossipy kind of place at all. I like that because I really dislike work gossip. Today there were a couple of times that I asked a question and basically got a 'none of your business' response in a very rude tone. That really pissed me off. Seems like everyone else knows and all I did was ask a confirmation question. I went back to my desk, did some work. I had to go get some stuff and had to see 'A', the one who said it to me. She did apologize, but it was more of a 'sorry I snapped' than anything else. By that point, I was too pissed off to care. I started to say something, god forbid I ask a question there, but I stopped. I have learned not to be impulsive with the things I want to say. Shortly thereafter, I heard whispers going on. Pissed me off even more. As I am technically finished work at 3:15 and it was 3:30, I decided it was best for everyone if I left. I put some stuff in a bag to take home, and just walked out of there. Felt good, just leaving. By tomorrow, things will calm down. But, I have learned, once again, not to ask questions. If I'm to know something, 'they' will tell me. Some things are just not worth the time or effort to stress over.

Saturday, November 17, 2007

Why do I live here?

My ex, Scott, and I, moved to BC in 1996. At the time, we were moving there to start a new life, which we did. We got married, had 2 beautiful daughters, a house, and 2 dogs. The whole time we were there, my mother, at least once a week, would let me know how much she missed me and wanted us (me) to move back to Toronto. I loved our life in BC, for the most part. It's a beautiful province and the people are different (in a good way). I made life-long friends there, some of which I think of and miss every day. Anyway, when our married finally ended, moving back to Toronto seemed like a good idea. My mom was always saying things like 'if you lived here, I could help you out more'; 'I miss the girls'; 'we could open a business together'; 'we would get to know each other more', etc. You get the idea...move back and life would be great. As it was, Scott was very verbally abusive towards me, so when the marriage ended and the idea of moving closer to my family sounded good. The girls and I live next to my sister and my mother is 10 minutes away. There are good and bad things about it. We're in a semi-detached home, so we always have to be quiet because my sister's family is quiet. We have dinner together every Sunday night, it's been like that for many years. Most often, that's the only time I see my sister and my mother. My sister is the most private person I know. She doesn't talk about anything of substance. I talk to my mother a couple of times a week, but life is busy. She's always saying how she wants to spend more time with the girls, take them out, and be with them. There's a catch, though...it's only on her time. I've asked her a couple of times to babysit while I go out. Most times she can't as she's busy. I'm thrilled that my mother, 68 years old, has a much better social life than I have. She has a companion and they do everything together. They are exactly like a married couple in love, except they don't live together and he's gay.
This year in particular, things are very busy for me. I'm working full time, and I always have the girls, except every other weekend. I'm also active in my AA groups, but they are noon meetings so I do that during the day. I'm the VP of the daycare Board of Directors. The girls are both in programs (Martial Arts, Brownies, the usual school stuff). I rarely go out, even the weekends I don't have the girls. I don't isolate, but I also don't go out during the week.
When I got the schedule for the daycare Board meetings, I told my mother and asked her if there were any nights she had free, she could spend extra time with the girls (the meetings are once per month) . I know this Tues there's a meeting and she's with the girls.
I was asked to speak at another AA meeting. My neighbour, Eric, goes to different meetings, he goes at night. I was bugging him that he didn't come to hear me last week (it went very well, by the way!). He said next time he Chairs his meeting, he's going to ask me to speak. When you chair a meeting, you run the meeting...get the people who read, get a speaker, and run the meeting. So, he asked me last night if I would speak at his meeting Dec 6, it's a Thurs. I called my mother and asked her if she was available to babysit that night. She freaked at me. Really. She said she doesn't have time at night, she's very busy, and she is NOT here to babysit my kids while I go out. She really reamed me out. Well. That was a lot in a short conversation. I told Eric that I would speak, but I have to get a sitter. I started to get upset at my mother. Yes, I know she has a life, she's not a babysitter. However, to my defense, she's always telling me she wants to spend more time with the girls. Since they are at school during the day, it leaves the night for her to spend time with them. What happened to 'if you lived here...'? I rarely ask my mother for anything, often if I do I get the same response...'I can't afford it' or 'I'm busy that night'. I haven't asked her for anything material in more than a year. I was very upset by her reaction and vowed that I won't ask her again to babysit. She can see the girls once a week, since that's the time that everyone has put aside for dinner.
She ended up calling me back to apologise. I didn't hear my phone, but she left a messge telling me she was sorry. I didn't call her back, so of course she called me back. I was still upset, but told her it was fine, I would get a sitter.
The more I thought about it, the more upset I got about it. Why did I move back to a city I disliked? I hate the weather, there's too many people, no mountains, and just too busy for me. It's also not as safe as Maple Ridge, where we lived in BC. The reason we moved back was to be closer to my family. Well, we are a lot closer to my family, but it doesn't seem to make any difference. I actually talked to my sister and my mother more when I lived in BC. I know at some point we have to move from this house, probably at the end of the school year. I was going to try to stay in this area, but realistically, it's not my first choice. It's close to work, and the school is great, but there are other good schools out of the city. I can worry about the job once we decide on a place to live.
My mother called me again this morning. She apologised again. She said that I'm a good person who only does good thing for other people and I didn't deserve to be talked to that way. She said some of what I was thinking. We moved her so we could see each other more. We don't. She said that she's going to make more of an effort to spend more time with the girls. That doesn't mean that I want her to babysit all the time. I know it's going to be a long time, if ever, that I ask her to babysit, but I don't think she'll be as rough with me. I also told her that speaking at an AA meeting is important, and I was going to do it anyway. I was asking her first if she was available to spend time with the girls, not to use her as a babysitter.
One of the main differences now that I'm in AA is that now I can let things go once they happen. I don't have a resentment because of the way she yelled at me. I'm not moping and thinking that I'm going to move far away. It's over and done with, for me at least.
We still have to wait to see if she is available for Dec 6, the original reason I called her. Funny how that just dissapears when other stuff happens.

Sunday, November 11, 2007

Me? A speaker???

I was asked to speak at my Mon noon meeting. I've been on the committee for a few months, becoming active in the group. I'm secretary there, means I stand at the front and say the announcements and hand out chips to those who have earned them (first year of sobriaty, 1/3/6/9 months, plus a chip for anyone who has a desire to quite for the day).
Beth, a woman who has been in the program the same lengh of time as me, has asked me to speak at this meeting. I knew the time was coming when I'd be asked, just didn't know when it would be. Being asked to speak is a fairly big deal. It means that you go the the front of the room and share your story, your experience, strength, and hope with fellow alcoholics. There's usually about 50 people or so at this meeting. Since it's the first time I am speaking and sharing my story, I'm a tad bit nervous about it. What could I possibly say that may help someone else? I don't really know what the answer is, but I'm going to give it my best. I have learned so much from other people sharing, it's really what AA is all about. I know one thing I really want to say: the alcoholism really is a disease, and it's not something you can help doing. It doesn't mean that you are a weak person, it means that you are sick and need help. I've learned over time that AA meetings are my 'medicine'. I have a thyroid problem, I've been on suppliments for years. It's a sickness. In that respect, AA cannot cure me, but it can maintain me.
Wish me luck tomorrow. I think I'll be okay as long as I speak from the heart.

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

It's time for a new post!

My life has been very busy lately, or still, depending on how you look at things.

Work is going very well. When I first started working at the family law office, I felt like Benny from 'LA Law'. He was a mentally challenged worker who did all of the menial stuff around the office. Can I get this file, photocopy this, put these papers in order, etc. It wasn't the other people who made me feel that way, it was me and the way I felt about myself. Don't they know who I am? Don't they know what I've done? I then realized that I was making myself feel that way. Yes, I have a BA, yes, I have worked in companies where I've travelled, had company cars and visa's. Yes, I've run my own business and also worked for family for many years. All of that doesn't really matter. What matters are the things I am doing NOW to support my family. I have to do it all. I do get some support money from my ex, but on the whole, I support us. Usually at work I'm very busy. I was initially hired to do the filing, it was a part time job a few hours a week. Over the past year, it's developed into a job where I'm paid for 5 hours a day, but put in an average of 7. I feel proud of what I've done there. I've turned that filing job into much more, and I'm given more responsibility there all the time. I'm now Account's Recievable. That in itself is funny to me, I failed math in a big way. I hate math and numbers. But, I am good with people and I'm good at getting them to pay some of the money they owe. Lawyers are expensive (mine is $450/hr!), and it adds up quickly. It's not unusual for someone to owe over $5000 in a month. Anyway, in addition to that, I've been given several 'put together' projects. I now am comfortable putting together court documents in triplicate from scratch. I was also told today that I'm getting another program for my computer that everyone else has. It's the main program for documents and putting together things for court. It's weird there: there are the lawyers, and the assisstants, and then there's me. I'm the odd-one out. Again, that bothered me at first, but now I'm getting used to it and I kind of like it. I don't have a job description and I am being given other opportunities to grow there. I've made myself an important part of the 'team', the finished product. Today one of the lawyers asked me to help her find stuff in a file. As I do the filing, I know where everything is. They have learned that they only need to ask me anything about a file and I know where it is. Sure, I'll never be 'president', I'll never save the world there...but, I do contribute in a big way and I've made myself an important part of the team. For me, right now in my life, that's enough. I'm thankful that I have this job and have been given the opportunity to make it grow. I, for one, don't mind going to work everyday. I'm not sure how many people can honestly say that.

Thursday, October 11, 2007

Tagged

I was tagged by Tweetey. I've never been tagged before, so I now feel like I'm 'part of' the blog world. Thanks, Tweetey.
Seven things about me...

1. I'm a recovering alcoholic. That's the number one thing in my life, the recovering part. Some of you might be upset that it comes before my kids. I have learned the hard way that without my sobriaty, I don't have anything else. First thought of the day (after 'crap, it's too early to get up') is thanking my higher power and asking for another sober day. Last thought at night (after 'I should have gone to bed earlier') is thanking my higher power for the gift of my children and having a sober day.

2. My two daughters are my life. I love them for who they are (exept when they don't listen, when they whine, cry for no reason, fight, and stay up too late). They both have exceptionally good hearts. Leah was a 'what, I'm pregnant?' It was totally the wrong time, and I was told after Heather not to have more kids. I can't imagine life without the two of them.

3. I make an effort to see positive in everyone. Sometimes it's very hard. I tend to stay away from negative people. I teach my kids that you will attract what you are. If I am a positive person, I will attract positive people.

4. I haven't had sex in about 4 years. I don't really care. I've never had wild, amazing sex. I can't miss what I've never had.

5. I still find it strange to be living in Toronto again. I grew up here, spent the first 30 years of my life here, spent almost 9 years in BC and have been back for almost 3 years. I wake up expecting to see the mountains and a huge backyard. I don't. I see concrete.

6. I honestly get dissapointed when I check my lottery numbers and I haven't won. I don't buy tickets often because of that.

7. I can't stand surprises and presents. I am a total 'snooper'. It really bugs me when someone starts to say something but then says 'never mind'.

I'm now supposed to tag 7 other people. To be honest, I don't really know 7 people who read my blog, so I can't.
I can attempt to tag:
Michelle
Lisa
Inmatz Wife
Ryan

Those are the blogs that I read most often and who might somewhat know who I am. I'm not tagging Tweetey because she tagged me.

Saturday, October 6, 2007

October 5, 2004

I was out with some friends last night when it suddendly dawned on me that our official 'Separation' date is Oct 5. Luckily, I was out with a bunch of single women, so when I announced that it's been 3 years since we've been separated, we all did a huge 'congrats' and high 5's around the table. It's nice to be with people who appreciate the joys of being separated.

That got me thinking about legal stuff. Since I work in a legal office, I see stuff every day. I've seen lots of files where I've seen the divorce application go into the courts then the divorce order come back; parties are divorced, close the file, put it in storage. I looked into my own file and realized that we don't even have an Application in yet. There was so much stuff going on when he scooped the girls that I didn't even think about it. We talked about it once a while ago when I mentioned to him that we are no closer to divorce than we were the day we separated. Really, unless you're going to marry again, the divorce is just a piece of paper.
I mentioned a while back about the current court Order that is in place. Currently, that is the only legal thing we have. There are a couple of clauses that I want changed and Scott agrees with them. After going on for several months trying to get him to either pay his lawyer or get her off the record, he finally told me the other day that he wasn't going to do anything. Yep, he is sick of the legal stuff and doesn't want to have anything more to do with it. Ha! As if it was that simple! I drafted a new consent Order and letter to his lawyer, showed it to my lawyer and we're going to send it next week. Enough of the crap. This is going to end up costing him a lot more money that if he had simply followed through with what I asked him to do and he agreed to do. Lawyers charge for everything. 'Good morning' can cost you $50. That's not why I'm doing it, although I do have to admit that it's a nice side benefit. I want this thing done. Enough is enough. Scott still has not paid me the costs awarded to me over a year ago. Worst of all, I asked him if he would please contribute to some the things for the girls. Brownies, martial arts, art class, etc. His response was that he couldn't now because he didn't have the money. Yah, I told him I expected that answer but just wanted to see if I was right.

I expected to feel something when I realized it's been 3 years. Honestly, I felt relief that the marriage really was over and has been for a long time. As a marriage certificate is a piece of paper with a lot of meaning to it, a divorce certificate can mean just as much to some. I once told a friend who was getting married that marriage is the same, but different as before. I think the same goes for divorce. Those of you who are divorced will know exactly what I mean.

Monday, October 1, 2007

Mommy & Leah Weekend

Leah and I had a 'Mommy & Leah' weekend this past weekend. Heather is in Brownies, she loves it and lots of her friends are in it. This past weekend was the Brownie Camp Weekend. They left on Fri evening, came home Sun. At first, this sounds like an amazing opportunity for friends to get together, bond, and enjoy the great outdoors. The girls and I got to the pick up place at the appointed time. Somehow, a lot of the girls were already paired up with whom they were going to sit with on the bus. Heather felt left out. Having felt this way for most of my life, I can relate to that feeling. It sucks. I talked with Heather, told a couple of the Brownie Leaders about why she was upset, and they found some girls for her to sit with. Anyway, after sending a crying Hetaher on a bus with the Brownies, I had to get into the moment and concetrate on Leah. We went to the video store, renting Barbie and the Island Princess, a new movie she really wanted to see. We had our own fun over the weekend. She had a 'Toys R Us' gift card from her birthday last month. After watching the Barbie movie, Leah and I went to 'TRUs' and I let her pick out things that SHE wanted to get. I emphasize that, because Leah doesn't always get things that SHE wants. I've seen it all too often that Heather will convince Leah that she wants things that Heather actually wants. It's quite the manipulation game. After Leah picked out things that she wanted, we went for a walk, then went home. we ended up going out for dinner, and, as both of us were tired, she was sleeping by 8pm and I was in bed by 9. Yep, me, in bed at 9pm on a Sat. Oh well, it felt good Sun am having a great sleep for a change. Sunday we did some shopping, and then my mom took her, along with my niece and nephew, to my mom's friend's house where they were having a Sukkot party. Jewish sort of thing for celebrating harvest and stuff. Anyway, while they were there, I was told that Leah got into a fight with 2 boys. Yep, my little Leah, petite, shy (HA) picked a fight with 6 year old and 11 year old boys. I actually have to give her cred for it. She was playing with a ball and they took it away from her. She asked for it back, they didn't listen, so she kicked and scratched them. Oh yes, she growled at them as well. When they got back, my mom told me about it. I asked Leah why she was punching, hitting, kicking, biting, and scratching at the boys. She told me that the boys took her ball. She siad 'Mommy, I didn't bite or hit them'. Hard to get really mad at that. I did explain that it wasn't appropriate behaviour, blah, blah. She knew that already, she says. They just made her mad.
Anyway, Heather came back from her trip, she had fun and brought home lots of rocks (don't ask, I have no idea why she brought rocks home).
By Sunday night after dinner with the family (same old, but my sister was slightly better this week), they girls were back to their usual fighting/loving ways.
They are both good kids. I have to keep reminding myself that with me as their Motehr and Scott as their father, they are bound to be messed up more than a little bit. Ah, the joys of seeing resessive jeans passed on...

Sunday, September 23, 2007

This Post Has No Title

We live in what is considered to be a very desirable area of Toronto. The houses sell for well over 1/2 million. We're pretty much mid-town, one but to the subway. Almost all of the parents' are professionals earning more than the average Canadian. The thing is, the houses are older and most are semi-detached with smaller yards. Our yard, for example, has no grass. We have a cement pad at the back, partially fenced, a nice garden, and a big trampoline.
The girls and I live next door to my sister and her family. They are in one side of the semi, the girls and I in the other. Some people would say 'wow, that must be great' being so close to my only sister. In some ways it is nice. We have dinner every Sunday and all we have to do is walk next door. When I was in my deepest, darkest time before I joined AA I called my sister and she was literally there for me in seconds.
The problem is, on a day-to-day basis, I never really see her. My sister, R, is a very private person. Her kids are 'different', especially my neice, A, who is now 16. She's the only 16 year old I know who will ONLY take her written drivers test if it's in Latin. Last week she decided that she was going to graduate a year early from high school and now she's applying to MIT and Yale. Really, that's her.
I find it very difficult going there, not really talking about anything for fear of one of them getting upset that I'm prying into their lives. R is usually doing one of a few things: work, on her cell, emailing on her blackberry, or taking her son to hockey.
Sometimes I find out from the neighbours what is going on in her life. It's weird, but I accept it. It used to really upset me, not being a 'part of' her life and the lives of my only neice and nephew. It still does upset me a bit, but now I can just leave her house and her ways behind me. I realize that is itsn't 'me' she does that to, it's her way and the way of her kids.
R told me a few weeks ago that she and her husband are separating. It's her second marriage, but now she has a great relationship with her first husband (the father of my neice and nephew). The first husband turned out to be gay, so that might have something to do with their marriage not working out. Anyway, R told me about the separation, mainly because she is using the lawyer that I work for and I would find out from work. I really don't know anything else about it. Don't know why, don't know what's happening with her kids going to private schools, and the expensive cars she drives, or the house they are living in. Small problem...she and her business partner own the house that the girls and I are living in. If they move, we will have to move. On top of that, the business partner's daughter was living here and she recently moved.
Now I'm not terribly fond of Toronto, so I don't mind too much if we do have to move away. The problem lies in the life we have built here. The girls go to school litererally around the corner. I work nearby, and my AA meetings are close and convenient. If we move, it will be away from the core of the city. There are too many scummy areas, and horrible neighbourhoods.
I mentioned to my mother that when we move we'll move from the city. She doesn't understand that because to her Toronto is the centre of the universe. She never understood why we moved to BC and why I loved it so much. Any area of Toronto that we could afford rent would be a horrible area. The area we are in is way too expensive. Reality is, we are only here because my sister had this house ready to rent when the girls and I moved from BC. I'm not upset about it, actually not really thinking too much about it. It will be what it will be. I'm not going to stress about it, and we will find a place to live when we need to, and it will be a new home for us.
I guess I needed to vent about things. It bothers me that my sister is the way she is. It bothers me that I don't own my house. It bothers me that I cannot ask my only sister questions about herself and the life of her kids. I accept that, it's one of the things I have learnt since becoming sober. I don't have to agree or even respect other people and their lives, but if I ACCEPT those things, I am a happier person. And really, isn't that what it's all about? Accepting. I think if more people accepted the world would be a happier place. I know I am.

Sunday, September 9, 2007

Having Fun!

















Lots of stuff going on here....

These are some pictures of things we have been doing. The day after Mandi got here, Aug 31, we went to the Ex (CNE, Canadian National Expabition). We got the girls all-day play passes and they went on tons of rides. They had such a great time and I was content and peaceful watching them have fun.

Heather, Mandi, Heather's friend Emily, and Emily's dad went to Niagara Falls for day. They had a fabulous time. I'm glad Mandi got to see it. It really is a shame to come all the way across the country and not see the Falls.

Also this past week was the first day of school. I took a picture of Heather with 2 of her close friends, Samantha and Mia. They are in the same class this year. It was Leah's first day of real school. You can see from her face how happy and excited she is. Does a mother good to see her children so happy.

We've been enjoying our stay with Mandi a lot. The girls were so happy to see her. Luckily for Mandi, they spent this past weekend with Scott so we can both have a bit of piece and quiet.

Girls come home tomorrow am, then it's back to school again for them.

Tuesday, September 4, 2007

Lots more to come.......

There has been so much going on here, I haven't had time to post.
Mandi, our good friend from BC is visiting us for two weeks. We've had a great time so far, and there's still lots more to come.
Heather started Grade 3 today, had a great first day.
Leah's first day of SK (senior kindergarten) is tomorrow.
I have been taking pictures, but haven't downloaded them onto the computer yet.
When I have a few more mintues (yah, right, like that actually happens) I will post more and post pictures.

Saturday, August 25, 2007

'Stuff'

I often wonder if 'normal' people think the same things that I think. I've talked a bit about perception and how mine is warped. I had an example of how my thinking is changing a few days ago. My next door neighbour, Eric, is in the program. I'm great friends with his wife and his son and Heather were in the same class for two years. We live in semi-detached houses. My sister is the other half of my house. Eric's next door neighbour (their houses attached), I'll call her S, is sort of a bitch. I was friends with her when we first moved to Tornoto almost 3 years ago. To make a long story short, we are no longer friends. Eric and his wife Barb can't really stand her. It makes it difficult, being close neigbours. Anyway, Eric and I were talking about S and how she has changed for the worse over the past couple of years. She has had the same man for almost 2 years. She's divorced, 2 kids. Eric was saying that no matter what, he cannot be friends or even pleasant to her. I disagree. In my view, if S were to come to me and talk to me sincerely about things, I would have to forgive her and accept her. If I don't, I'm not working my program. I said as much to Eric, and he actually agreed with me (for the most part). For now, I will stay away from S, but be cordial when I see her and say 'hello'. If I can't do that, then I cannot even begin to live in today and deal with yesterday.
It's difficult to be near a person with whom you once shared a history with and now do not wish to. I have some old friends who I just don't keep in touch with because of stuff. Everyone has 'stuff', I think it's what you learn from your 'stuff' that makes the person who they are. Sometimes it's hard to let go of things, but I'm realizing that often ife is better in the end, after the 'letting go' stuff.
When other words fail, 'stuff' is a good one.

Monday, August 20, 2007

Yesterday, Today, and Tomorrow...

YESTERDAY TODAY AND TOMORROW…

There are two days in every week about which we should not worry, two days which should be kept free from fear and apprehension.

One of these days is Yesterday, with its mistakes and cares, its faults and blunders, its aches and pains. Yesterday has passed forever beyond our control.

All the money in the world cannot bring back Yesterday. We cannot undo a single act we performed; we cannot erase a single word we said. Yesterday is gone.

The other day we should not worry about is Tomorrow with its possible adversities, its burdens, its large promise and poor performance. Tomorrow is also beyond our immediate control.

Tomorrow’s sun will rise, either in splendor or behind a mask of clouds – but it will rise. Until it does, we have no stake in Tomorrow, for it is yet unborn.

This leaves only one day – Today – Any one can fight the battles of just one day. It is only when you and I add the burdens of those two awful eternities – Yesterday and Tomorrow that we break down.

It is not the experience of Today that drives us mad – it is remorse or bitterness for something which happened Yesterday and the dread of what Tomorrow may bring.

Let us, therefore, live but one day at a time.



The preceeding is a poem that is read in almost every AA meeting in Toronto. When I first came into the 'program' I couldn't hear it without crying. I still have my days, but for the most part, it grounds me and reminds me what is important for today only.
I use the concept of this with my kids, especially Heather. I think she gets 'it', which for me is a huge thing.
It reminds me that the things that I have done, in addition to the things that other's have done, are not worth dwelling on. If I can forgive myself (not everything, mind you), I should be able to forgive others. It also reminds me that I don't have any control over people, places, or things. That was a tough concept for me to get, but once I did, wow, what a difference it made.

I wish you all a happy Today!

Thursday, August 16, 2007

I am not missed

I mentioned in a previous post that the girls are in Grand Bend with their Grandma and Papa this week. They have been gone since Sat, and it's now Thurs. They come home this Sat night.
I miss them, but I'm also getting stuff done around the house (somewhat, I am spending too much time on the computer). I'm supposed to start work at 9, the past few days I've been at my desk working by 8. I can't even drop the girls off at daycare until 7:45.
I've been talking/emailing them every day. I haven't really talked to Leah, she's much too busy for that. I called tonight and spoke with Heather for a bit. She met a friend there last year from Ireland, and the girl is there again. They are having a sleepover tonight. I talked to Heather for a few minutes, then she let me talk to Victoria, her friend, for a bit. I asked to speak with Leah, but I could hear her in the background saying 'hi Mommy, I love you but I can't right now because I'm busy'. Cute. It's very comforting to know that they are both having a great time, but is it too much to ask them to miss me just a little bit? I guess so.
Once again, I see how blessed I am. The girls are having a great time, are being well taken care of and are spending time with family they don't see too often. Good for them, I say.

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Freedom from Kids

The girls are in Grand Bend now with their Grandma and Papa (Scott's parent's). Scott was supposed to pick them up Fri night, but he was working out of town and didn't get much sleep so he asked to pick them up Sat am. He came over Sat am, the girls were ready to go and I wanted him to drop me off at my AA meeting because of the time factor.
We had to tell the girls about Floyd. We all went in the house and sat on the couch. It was hard, Heather started to cry right away, and I was crying as well. Leah wasn't really sure what it meant, but she knew that we were upset so she got upset as well. We tried to tell Leah that Floyd wasn't coming back, and she said she did understand, but I'm sure it will take a few times at Scott's seeing Zoey without Floyd until it sinks in that Floyd is dead. It was hard, but I'm thankful that we did it together. It is one of the very few times that we have agreed to do something and did not fight about it.
Heather is totally into her Webkinz, and a few weeks ago I got the black lab one for that occasion. After we told the girls, Heather ran up to the bathroom and locked the door. I got the Webkinz and knocked on the door. I told her how much I loved her, how much Floyd meant to our family and how much we were going to miss him. Then I gave her the lab Webkinz. I told her that I was going to name it Floyd and she was happy about that. I had Floyd set up in Webkinz World with his own room by the time they were in Grand Bend.
I have talked to them pretty much every night. They are having a great time. Grand Bend is on Lake Huron, it's beautiful there. They are swimming at the beach every day. Leah is putting her whole head in the water, and Heather is also doing well with her swimming.
I miss them, but it's only been a couple of days and they don't come home until Sat at some time. Heather has a birthday party the Sunday, so I got her the black lab as well, as per Heather's instructions.
Before the girls left, I was thinking about all of the things I was going to get done while they were away. I was going to go to an AA meeting every night, meet up with friend's and go for walks at night. Well, I did go to a meeting Sunday night, and I am meeting a friend for dinner tomorrow night. As far as the walks go, my foot is still very sore. I called the dr today, but results were not in as of this afternoon. I'm almost scared to find out what it is because it's not broken.
I have spent more time on the computer reading other blogs. I find it very interesting that I can just go from one blog to another by clicking on links. It's going into personal territory, something I still have trouble with. Even at work, I'm told to look in someone's office for files and if I can't see it right there, I can't really look. Weird for me because I am such a 'snooper'. Guess I'm changing in that dept as well.

Thursday, August 9, 2007

Updates...

A lot has gone on the past little bit. I updated about my foot, and will do so when something else comes along.
Anyway, Scott called me today. He had to put Floyd down this past Tues. He said that Floyd was not doing well and he was in a lot of pain. Scott was with him the entire time, even when the vet put him (Floyd, not Scott) to sleep. He said it was 'rough', which for Scott means that it was one of the most brutal things he's ever had to do. I've only seen Scott cry once or twice in all of the years I've known him, and it sounded like he was crying when he told me. He said Zoey, our wolf-dog, knows there is something wrong and doesn't know what to do with herself. Surprizingly, we are going to tell the girls together when he picks them up tomorrow night.
That brings me to another thing. He is going to take them to Grand Bend to visit his parents for a week. Scott won't stay there, but he will be there for the weekend, then the following weekend to pick the girls up. I debated a lot over letting them go. I have no problem with his parents, in fact, they are super nice. His step-mother is amazing, I really like her. When we went to court when Scott scooped the girls and was going for custody, his father didn't even really look at me but his step-mom said hello and gave me a hug. Scott was supposed to get some legal stuff done, but on his side, he did go to the courthouse and try to get it done. He did not recieve proper direction, so it couldn't be done. I have, once again, put the girls first and thought what was best for them. For them to miss a week of daycare to spend time with their family in the woods and a beach, that it best for them. Pat on the back for me. Sometimes the angel halo is nice (hahaha).

I WISH I had a fracture!

Well, the pain in my foot is still there. Had the x-ray this past Tues, and saw a sports med doctor today. I don't have a fracture, but there is sign of a bunion. The doctor today had some ideas...it's probably not an injury caused by trauma (meaning it doesn't appear that I fell or something). It's possibly gout, or some other rheumatic disorder. I didn't even really think of that. There is a history of arthritis in the family and I've been borderline Lupus for years. He mentioned a couple of other possibilities, but I can't even pronounce them, never mind spell them or remember them.
I had lots of tubes of blood taken and the Dr will call when the results are in. I'll update when I know more.
It would be much simpler if I just had a fracture somewhere. The process is much simpler, cast, crutches or cane, a few weeks of pain then it's over. With me, nothing is ever that simple!

Monday, August 6, 2007

Feet and Weekend...

About four years ago, I tripped while I was carring a then-9 month old Leah. I thought I pulled a muscle, went to the doctor. He said 'you pulled a muscle, stay off of your feet for a few days'. I didn't, I had 2 little kids. Fast forward about 3 months...the pain in my hip didn't go away. I thought if I kept waling on it, it would get better. Insead, it got a lot worse. Still didn't go check it out, because he already told me to keep off of it. Finally, I did go. See my leg kept locking, meaning that after a few steps my leg would just stop, with lots of pain, and wouldn't move. Weird, but true. To make a long story short, I had fractured my femur, the bone that keeps your leg attached to your hip. It was a horizontal fracture that was about to snap, meaning hip replacement. I did have surgery, have 3 pins in my hip now, and was in a wheelchair for more than 3 months to let my hip heal.
You'd think I'd learn. Fast forward to about 3 weeks ago. My left foot started to hurt. I limped, started to limp a lot. It's swollen and I can't really move my toes or my foot without it being very painful. I know why it took so long, my family dr is away for another couple of weeks and I know there is always a long wait in the clinic. I simply did not have time for a possible fracture. By last Fri it was way worse. Finally, I got a friend to pick the girls up Fri and I went to a walk in medical clinic. Three hours later, I hobbled out of there. The doctor wasn't exactly sure what was wrong with it, but I do have to have an x-ray tomorrow because it may have a hairline fracture. He said to stay off of it. My uncle owns a surgical store, so Sat I went down there to get 'supplies'. I now have a cane, crutches, tensor's, you know, the usual things that people do Sat of a long weekend.
Regardless of that, the girls and I did have a good weekend. Heather went for a playdate Sat. Leah was kind of grounded for not listening, so aside from our outing to get my supplies, we were home. Yesterday we went to my uncle's house to swim and for dinner. Today I took them to a splash park. We had fun! I am trying to stay off of my ankle as much as I can, at least I am using a cane at all times.
I go for the x-ray tomorrow, I'll write more when I have a clue as to what is wrong.
Nobody ever said that my life is boring and without just a little bit of drama!

Monday, July 30, 2007

Friday, July 27, 2007

Things I'm Grateful For...

Throughout a lot of my teenage and adult life I was depressed a lot. I didn't realize it at the time, but looking back I was a depressing, negative, boring person. I don't mean that to be a downer, but lets face it, I was a downer. I went through a lot of stuff, had an abusive marriage, lived in a place 3000 miles away from my family and long-time friends. I hit a bottom that even in AA is a 'good one'.
Since being in AA and recovery, I'm learning how to change my way of thinking. A lot of the disease of alcoholism is perception. For example, you may say to me with a smile on your face 'hello, Eileen, how are you today?' I may hear 'F you, Eileen, you're a bitch.' That's pretty much it in a netshell.
Anyway, often when Heather or Leah start to be negative about stuff I start them on a 'gratitude list'. They get upset because we can't do some things other families do, like travel and go to 'fun' places. I am not driving right now. They see their father 4 days a month. Other stuff as well that is typical of 4 1/2 and 8 year old girls. Heather is more dramatic than Leah is, so I have the conversation with her more often. We start with 'we can breathe'. We can talk, walk, write, read, we have a great house to live in (yes it's a rental, but it's still our rental), they have two parents that love them, we have family close by, we have lots of friends, etc. Then sometimes we get into silly stuff, like we have a great gelatto place close by, there aren't any boys in our house, we don't watch sports on our tv, we can watch 'Barbie and the magic of Pegasus' 100 times and still like it. You know, normal stuff that other families do.
I'm truly blessed that by the time the conversation is over we are all laughing and having fun.
I'm not 'preaching' about AA by any means, it's just that without it I wouldn't be the person I am today and beable to laugh and have fun with my daughters.
I AM blessed....I'm going to make sure I read this next time I feel even a little bit of 'poor me'.
Before you go to bed tonight, make a mental gratitude list and see how much better your dreams are! Trust me, it does work!!
Happy Weekend.

Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Moving on....

Leah is starting at her new daycare this Monday. She has been at Mothercraft for the past 2+ years, with the exception of the time she spent with Scott after he 'scooped' them. The daycare at Heather's school has one of the biggest wait-lists ever. We have been on the list for 2 1/2 years, ever since we moved here. The school, Maurice Cody, is around the corner from us, it's so close. Heather got into the daycare last March on a 'contract' spot. That means a kid left during the year and they had a spot for a couple of months but not for Sept. Anyway, one day I got a call that Leah got in. Siblings have priority, so Heather got in as well. Leah is starting this Monday, then she has a month to get adjusted before school starts.
Mothercraft has been amazing for Leah. She has learned so much and the teachers are amazing. There is one male teacher, Rick. I think I've written about him before. He decided to take this week as a vacation week, so our goodbye with him was last Friday. Leah and I got him a card, she drew a nice picture and I wrote some stuff in it. Without question, Rick has been THE most positive influence on Leah, including her father. Rick is amazing. He genuinely cares for the kids, he's funny, and he's great (Michelle, he has a girlfriend that he's had for years...just because I mention a man doesn't mean that I'm interested in him :)).
Our goodbye was so hard. I started to cry when I saw him. He read the card that Leah gave him and he started to cry. I told him how I felt and how much I'm going to miss him in Leah's life. He told me how he felt, which was so nice...he said I'm pretty much the strongest women he has ever met, how he admires the stuff I have gone through and how I have come out of it. By the end we were both bawling. I think a large part of me was also remembering when I left BC and knew that there were some people I was not ready to leave, people I still needed in my life.
It is hard when positive things happen to say goodbye to other things. People and places that have had such a major impact in my, or my kids, life... It is a hard thing to do, but I realize that one more phase of Leah's life is starting next week. We have the rest of the 'goodbyes' this Friday. I'll let you know how they go...

Thursday, July 19, 2007




When I was a little girl, my sister and I had some professional photos taken at a park called Edward's Gardens. When my sister's kids were around the same age as we were at the time, she took them to the same tree and fountain and had pictures of them taken. Now, my girls are the same age, so this past week we took them and a professional photographer to Edward's Gardens for their pictures at the same tree and fountain. One problem: it's now a different fountain and there wasn't any water in it. Oh well, it's the thought that counts. The tree, by the way, is massive now. And, these are my photos. I just hope the photographer doesn't 'missplace' them (dig, dig, Michelle)!

Tuesday, July 17, 2007

I am SUCH a nice Mommy!

Scott was telling me that it's his best friend's daughter's 6th birthday party this weekend and that the girls were invited. Normally, I would tell him that it's my weekend and tough crap for him. I didn't. I told him he could take the girls for the majority of the day, eventhough it's my Sat. Why??? Certainly wasn't for him, that much I'm sure about. I did it for Heather and Leah. I know that they need their father in their lives, and Cassidy is their friend.
I've really been trying to think of what is best for my daughter's first and to try to put my feelings aside. It's hard, because their father is such an idiot. I'm not just saying that, he really is. This post is not about how I feel about him, it's about my personal development and doing what is right for the girls. Putting them first is one of the most important things I can do for myself and for them. Don't get me wrong, they are not spoiled little brats. I discipline them, get mad at them, and generally do what most parent's do. The difference I'm trying to make is to put their needs infront of my own. We really didn't have too much planned this weekend.
I go to an AA women's meeting almost every Sat. The Sat the I have the girls, my mother comes to watch them. This Sat we were invited to an AA picnic/bbq on Centre Island (an Island in Toronto). I just found out about it tonight. Sounds like lots of fun. I may just go without them and enjoy myself there.
Bottom line....I'm nowhere near perfect, and never will be, but I do want the girls to grow up knowing that I didn't do everything to limit their time with their father. I may not like him as a person, but he is their father. I have to deal with that and know that one day they will thank me for it.
The End!

Sunday, July 15, 2007

Roger Waters...

I went to see Roger Waters tonight at the Roger's Centre. It was AMAZING!! I've been a Floyd fan for years. I have seen Pink Floyd 4 times, I have at least 10 CD's, The Wall was the first movie I ever bought (and I still have it), and I named a dog Floyd. I think that qualifies me.
My neighbour, Eric, this morning was playing basketball with his son, told me that a radio station was having a Floyd weekend, and that Roger Waters was playing tonight. I said, 'Wow, I want to go'. Anyway, after checking with his wife (we are great friends), Eric and I decided that we would go and get tickets from scalpers. I've never done that before, but lots of people do so it can't be too bad. We got to the stadium, had a limit for us of $100 each. Went to a few scalpers, ended up 'bargoning' for tickets that were not half bad. We get to the gate and are told that there is a problem with the tickets, we have to go to another gate. To make a long story short, the tickets were not good (someone had cancelled them). We sold them to another scalper for $80, then went back to the ticket place and bought real tickets for $50. The seats were way high up and Roger Waters was hard to see, but really, with the screens it didn't matter. They were actually good seats. We were high up, but centre. Soon we forgot about the scalper thing, we agreed that the important thing was that we were seeing the concert and it was great. Afterward, we talked to a couple of scalpers and told them what happened. We don't know if the guy who sold us the tickets even knew they were not good. Chances are someone knew, traded them plus money for better seats and walked away. The scalpers are a 'business' where all of them know each other. Doesn't matter. We loved the show, Roger Waters was great. The music was out of this world. It's been years since I saw a concert and this was a great concert to see. Certainly made a difference seeing it sober. It also helped that Eric is in AA as well. The people beside us smoked a few joints and were downing beer. I think we probably got a bit stoned from all of the smoke. It was kind of funny-sitting so far up and smoke rises...
From not having too many plans this weekend while the girls are with Scott, this has turned into one of the best weekends!
There are few things in this life that make me truly, honestly, genuinely happy...this was one of those things...

Thursday, July 12, 2007

BC Friends

I've talked a bit about my life in BC. Scott (the ex) and I moved to BC about 10 years ago. At the time, I was 30, had a great job at a family business, all of my family being in Toronto, where I had spent my entire life. My father died when I was a teenager, and my mother's idea of 'roughing it' is a 3-star hotel. I never spent a lot of time in the wilderness. I found out that I really loved it.
Anyway, we moved to BC, both got jobs, and settled in a smaller community called Maple Ridge. It was 'country', especially for someone who grew up in a big city like Toronto. We bought a house. We got 2 dogs, then had 2 kids. We camped, hiked, and generally spent a lot of time outdoors. I also made a lot of great friends.
In life, one is always meeting new people. That's what life is all about. Sometimes you meet people you just 'click' with and they come to mean a lot to you. I have some friends from my life in BC that are like that. My old neighbours were like that. A mom, a (deadbeat) dad (who is no longer in the picture), and 5 kids. One of the daughters and I became very close. We were like siblings, friends, mother/daughter...family. Her name is Mandi. Another close friend is Cindy. Cindy and I clicked like few other people and I have. We became so close, we still talk at least once a week, and we also keep a 'messenger' window open all the time. Because of the time difference we don't get on the computer at the same time as often as we'd like to, but we 'communicate' several times a day. One other close friend is Michelle. Michelle and I met by chance, I was interested in my own business and it turned out that Michelle was into the same thing. Our kids were roughly the same age and they became friends as well. We had lots of talks about stuff and got to know each other very well.
Once Scott and I separated and I decided to move back to Toronto with the girls, I had 3 weeks to put my BC life in order. One of the hardest things I've EVER had to do was to say goodbye to my BC friends. Some I couldn't, it was too hard and the tears wouldn't stop long enough for words. Leaving Toronto was never hard, because I always knew that I'd be back for visits. Leaving BC was much harder. The girls and left Oct/04 with promises of visits, cards, phone calls, and emails. For the most part, I have kept in touch with those I wanted to keep in touch with. The promises of visits have not happened, but it's more expensive to fly Toronto/Vancouver than it is to go to England. It's hard to believe that it's been 2 1/2 years without seeing these people.
I got an email from Mandi, who is now in her early 20's. She has been talking about visiting here for a long time. She was booked to come here, but it was Jetsco and she lost the money and the visit. Anyway, she now wants to visit end of the summer/early fall. Leah turns 5 Sept 13, and Mandi wants to be here for that. Mandi was exceptionally close to my girls, especially Heather. Mandi was one of the first visiters at the hospital with both girls. She was there almost every day until we moved. I can't believe she's finally going to visit!
I am so thankful for those friends and more I have not mentioned. I feel that it's such a special gift to have friends like that, and to be so far away and still keep in touch is a wonderful feeling. These people have also been there to support me in my difficulties the past couple of years. How could I get through things without Cindy and the emotional support of the other friends I have mentioned?
One great thing is seeing how their lives have changed and improved. I am so happy some of things...Michelle meeting the man of her dreams and finally getting married to him. I'm sad that I wasn't there in person to see it, but I am so thrilled for her. Cindy's husband found the birth family he never knew about and now has a relationship with a family he didn't know. Mandi has a great new job, her mother is finally happy after living years with an abusive ass of a husband.
Most of all, I'm thankful for these friends who still want to keep in touch with me. It's one thing for me to miss people who were in my life on an almost-weekly basis, but it's another thing for those same people to miss me as well. With communication the way it is now, we may not be able to see each other in person as much as we'd like to, but we can email. Thanks to Michelle I have this blog. I know few read it, but at least some friends so.
That's it for now. I'm feeling good about these friends!!!

Monday, July 9, 2007

I'm getting old(er)

I'm over 40 now, actually I'm 41 1/2. Yes, it's scary. I always thought 'by the time I'm 30 I'll be..?' Didn't really make that one. But wait, there was hope...'by the time I'm 40 I'll...??'. Well, that didn't really happen either. Single at 30, single at 40, with 2 kids and lots of stuff inbetween.
I'm noticing my age more these days. After talking to other women, I"m not alone in this.
I noticed a couple of months ago that I wasn't seeing as cleary as I normally do. I've worn glasses for years, can barely see without them. It's getting worse. I tried to thread a needle last week and couldn't. Ouch.
A few years ago I had a wicked bunion and had it 'removed'. That's a nice way to say that I had my bone shaved, my toes broken, and a pin stuck into my foot. No prob. The surgery was very painful, but after while (well, many months), it was a lot better. Didn't think of it again.
About 4 years ago I fell while carrying a then-baby Leah. To make a very long story short, I fractured my hip, a horizontal fracture in the femur...I was told I needed surgery that day and if I put pressure on my leg the bone would snap and that would mean hip replacement. I had the surgery, spent a few months in a wheelchair, did many months of rehab, then didn't really think about it. I have 3 long pins in my hip, around 6 inches or so. Anyway, over this past winter I realized that I was in a lot of pain a lot of time. My foot (right) where I had the bunion was killing me, thought I had broken it. Went for x-rays and turns out I have arthritis in it. Talked to the dr last week, he's going to get me into a specialist sometime in 2008. Okay, so now my hip (left) is really sore. In the winter I can feel the pins in there. Stairs are still a bitch, and this is 4 years later. Asked the dr about that and he examined me. I'm going for an xray of my hip, but he said it's likely one of two things...the pins have moved or I have bursitis. I'm not sure which one is better. My foot, he said, if it gets worse, can be fused together so the pain isn't there when I move my foot or toes.
I'm kind of laughing about this. I know it's far from funny. I've often heard of women going to ??? once they hit 40, but I thought it was just words. With me and a lot of women I've talked to it's not...It's REALLY happening.
I'm going for blood tests and xrays, so hopefully I will find out soon what is wrong. I've come to a conclusion about that, finding out what is 'wrong'. It doesn't really matter what the label is, but the label does sort of make me feel better. I can't walk because my right foot and left hip hurt...'oh, that's okay, it's arthritis and bursitis'. There, I feel better already, don't you?!?

Wednesday, June 13, 2007

Floyd

When I moved to BC 10 years ago (wow, time flies!!), my then-husband and I bought a house and because he really wanted a dog, we got one. I was never really a pet person, but I was willing to try it. Fast forward...we ended up getting a black lab and I named him Floyd (after Pink, of course...I've seen them 4 times live). A few months later we were driving to the mountains and saw a sign that advertised wolf/malamute/sheppard pups. Along came Zoey, the most timid and strange wolf-dog ever.
We had the dogs before we had kids. When we had kids, before they were brought into the house, they were put on the ground in their car seats for the dogs to smell them. I loved those dogs, and it hurt like hell when the girls and I left BC without them. Didn't miss the ex. Anyway, the ex moved here (Toronto) and brought the dogs with him. I don't see them much because he is doing the driving across the city for pick up and drop off of the girls.
Floyd is now 10 and he's getting old. I haven't seen him in a few months, but the girls and Scott tell me that he's still the same goofy, wild, Floyd, but he's sick and has been for a while. Scott has made the decision to put him down. I don't disagree with that. In fact, without getting into a whole thing, I think we treat sick animals much more humanely than humans. Scott has been talking about it for the past month or so, and Heather knows about it as well. She drew a picture for Floyd, saying 'we'll miss you'. He told me tonight that he's going to bring the dogs here next week for me to say goodbye to Floyd. I'm so mixed about it. I know it's the right thing to do, he is an active, bonzai dog, but he's old and sick. I'm so thankful that I told Scott that I would like to say goodbye and so far he is going through with bringing him here. If I could have the dogs here I would, but my house just is not equipped for that, especially big dogs.
This is the first time in my adult life that I have loved a pet that is going to die. I'm sad, but still thankful that Floyd (and Zoey) gave me the kind of unconditional love that I never knew existed. I am looking forward to seeing the dogs again, but knowing that it will be the last time I see Floyd is going to be hard for me.
I will update later.

Sunday, June 10, 2007

After working at my lawyer's office for about a year now, as a 'casual', as of Friday I am officially an 'employee'. Fabulous news for me and the girls!
Since I was sick last year, I have been on Social Assistance. It's very hard being 41 on assistance. They have been very nice to me, but really, living in Toronto, there is no way to survive just on that. I recieve $450 from Scott in child support. They deduct that. I get money from Child Tax Benefits. They deduct that. I work, they deduct 1/2 of what I earn. The 'shelter' money is less than $600/month. How, in Toronto, mom and 2 children, do you find a place to live for that? Impossible! Anyway, the good news is that I will be on payroll and get off of Social Assistance. I will have medical/dental benefits (although not 100%, you cannot have everything), and job security.

On to other stuff.........
The associate (Malorie) who is helping me with my order/agreement spoke to me Friday. The draft that I have done is good, Scott wants some changes that we will incorporate. Malorie told me that she will not work on it until she has some assurance that Scott will be able to execute it once it's done. Because he hasn't paid his lawyer, he cannot get ILA (indipendent legal advise) from her. Malorie is looking out for me and doesn't want me to spend the money until she knows. I spoke to Scott and told him all of that and told him that summer plans would have to wait. I am biting the bullet and paying for this, he is getting things that he wants without signing, I'm putting an end to it. I did tell him that I was footing the bill for the girls because that is what's best for them.

Why is it that ex's have to be so difficult? I have spoken to other people, and also working in the family law field, I see it. Not to say that I have not contributed to this, but I'm trying to put that past me and moving forward. I have a lot of empathy for those whose ex's still 'annoy, harass, belittle' and generally are a pain in the ass. The 'annoy' etc. is in several separation agreements that I have read. How do you go about enforceing that????

Saturday, June 2, 2007

I'm discovering a big blog world out there

Over the past few days, I have been actually following links from the blogs I normally read to other blogs.
I have found links to several people in AA recovery that blog. Amazing what this world is! I'm going to check them out, see what they are like. I had a bit of a hard day last evening when Scott picked the girls up for the weekend. I am drafting the agreement/order and had asked him to look it over to see if we are on the same page in terms of stuff to agree on. He is such an ass, that's for another post later. Anyway, point is, I was trying to think of all the AA program stuff to help me deal with it because I was very upset and angry. I got onto the computer and started to look at some blogs, then followed links. What a cool blog world. Soon, I was calm and actively reading some of them. Once again, thanks to AA program and people.
I won't go on about that, just that it's a wonderful way to live!

Thursday, May 31, 2007

I try to be a positive person. When I was younger I was sick a lot, complained a lot about different things, and accordingly found myself getting short of friends. Who wants to be around negative people and negative energy? I've learned a lot the past couple of years, one of the most important things is to stay positive as much as possible. See the good in people. Make a gratitude list...sometimes as simple as 'I can breathe' is enough to snap me out of negativety.
I had a chat with Heather about that last week. She was bummed out because she's never been to Niagara Falls, Disneyland (or world), or left Canada. By the end of the conversation she was feeling much more positive because I reminded her about the things that she DOES have and has done. Very few 8 year old/grade 2's she knows have climbed mountains, had a huge petting zoo and pony rides in their backyard, caught a 20+ lb salmon, lived in another province, double-pearced ears, and a mother who (temporarily) died her hair brown, then bright pink. She wasn't feeling as sorry for herself after that conversation. Makes me feel a lot better that I can handle these situations in a positive way.
The last couple of weeks have been a challenge for me. I'm happy at work, but I don't have a 'real' job there. I'm 'casual', meaning that I'm not on regular payroll. No job security. I am trying to rectify that situation. My job was to be very temporary casual, but it's turned into more. The day to day challenges with the girls and having to do everything myself is sometimes overwhelming for me. How can I make the exact same thing for dinner that they loved one day and hate the next day?
One of my major 'challenges' these days is Scott, my ex. Problem is, he isn't truly my ex yet. I want that *** piece of paper that makes it legal that we are no longer married. I shared a few posts ago about how a couple of amazing women at work made the piece of papaer for me. Not legal, but very sweet of them. We had been getting along okay, but we've been trying to work out a more formal and legal Agreement to move on with stuff. To make a very long story shorter, he hasn't paid his legal bills, his lawyer won't do anymore work for him, and he flatly refuses to pay a dime towards an Agreement. I'm very tempted to leave things as they are in the Court Order from over a year ago. He has access alternate weekends from Fri to Sun. Period. That's it. We were working on and incorporating things that we both wanted in this Agreement. He has an extra night. Instead of bringing them home Sun night, he brings them home Mon am. I 'gave' him 2 weeks in the summer. I 'gave' him a flexible night during the week to take them for dinner...he has NEVER exercised that, by the way. What do I want? The current Order states that I must attend AA daily, must go for urine drug testing 3x a week, and some other stuff. As things are now, I don't want to have to go to AA daily or drug testing that often. I am blessed to have 5 AA meetings in 2 buildings that are directly in my 'bubble' of life. I will talk about my 'bubble' another time. Anyway, it's so frustrating for me. He is in agreeement of the the conditions and terms of the Agreement, but won't even contribute to the cost of it. I'm torn right now between telling him he does have alternate weekends and thinking of the girls and letting the girls have more time with him (not him having more time with them). Same thing but different ways of thinking of it. One is for the girls, other is for him. I think of what's right for them.
Time will tell what route I go. Perhaps for this weekends visit they will come home Sun night, and I'll take more time to think about the summer visit.

Saturday, May 26, 2007

Crazy, Stupid, ? I'm glad I'm not 8!

As part of Heather's 8th birthday, I had promised that she could invite 3 friends to sleepover. She's had sleepovers before, no biggie. She wanted more. Being a girl, I knew if she invited 2 friends, it would be 3 kids...bad idea to have odd number of kids, so I told her she could invite 3. Plus Leah, but that's because Leah was to have her own 'sleepover' in my room.
The sleepover turned into seeing 'Shrek 3' after school yesterday. Okay, fine. The parents of the 3 gladly paid for their kids. It turned out to be one of the mom's and her other daughter who is more Leah's age, so there were 6 kids plus 2 moms. It was actually not as bad as I thought. The 8 of us bussed it there, watched the movie, and only spent $20 on popcorn and candy (I brought water for all). The movie was good. I love Shrek. The girls liked it as well. After the movie, we took the bus home, stopped off at the corner pizza place, ordered and came home. Fastest pizza delivery in history. Anyway, fast forward....the other mom took her younger daught and went home. Leah was in the tv room and then climbed into her tent that was set up in my room.
The 4 girls took both Heather's and Leah's mattresses off the bed and set them up on the floor. There was major talk about who would sleep where. At 10, I asked them to stop playing and told them I was turning the light off. More talk about who was sleeping where. I asked each one if I could hug them and kiss them good night, they said 'yes' so I did. To make a long story short, 2 wanted to go home (neither did, although one called her parent's twice). It was 12 by the time they were all sleeping. Actually, I don't even know if they were all sleeping because I went to bed. It was late for me, I'd had a long day.
This morning all is okay, they all survived. We're just getting ready to go to the school fair now.
Have a good Saturday!!

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Goodbye Tamagotchi...Hello Webkinz!

Webkinz are the newest craze for kids in Heather's school. I didn't know what they were at first...WHAT?!? you want to spend $15 on a STUFFIE?!? When Leah got her tonsils out a couple of months ago, Heather went with a friend and her family to see Robert Munsch at Chapters. The store had Webkinz and Heather called me, begging me to allow the purchase of one. I did so, but wasn't happy about it. Skip forward a couple of months... Heather had her birthday party this past Saturday. She recieved 3 Webkinz, in addition to the 2 I had already bought her. Who goes on Webkinz every night once the girls are in bed? ME. That's right, I went on to check it out before Heather did, and also so I could help her if she needed it. Well, she teaches me stuff (although I have won 2 Cash Cow trophies!). This virtual world is amazing. It IS fun. She started off with one room, now she had about 10, and 2 outdoor yards. Eachof her 5 friends has their own room, plus a couple of playrooms, bathroom, kitchen, diningroom, etc. I only wish I had a house half as large as these virtual pets have.
Heather has a birthday party tonight. The girl, Shannon, has the same birthday as Heather and they have been friends for 2 years now. A couple of weeks ago I got Heather the unicorn to give to her at her birthday, well, that's the one that Shannon got for Heather. I talked to Shannon's mom and we agreed that since they have the same birthday, they could recieve the same Webkinz.
I finished work a bit early yesterday so I went downtown to the Eaton Centre (NOT Eating Centre, as my kids call it...they don't even know what Eaton's is, or was :) ). My puprose was to purchase a small 'add on' for Shannon and her new Webkinz. What do I do??? I purchase yet another Webkinz for Heather to replace the unicorn we are giving to Shannon, AND I buy them each the brand new Trading Cards. The new on-line trading card thing isn't even open yet and she already has the beginnings of a collection going.
I'm all for kids being on computers and being on-line. It's a skill they need to have in todays world. I was often caucious of Heather being on-line as I don't want anything bad to happen to my computer (oh ya, her as well). There are some not so nice sites out there. The great thing about Webkinz World is the fact that it is a safe site, and I can minimize the other windows so that window is the only one showing. Even better, I enjoy it as well. It's a fun, safe, and educational world there. Hey, I sound like an ad...do I get paid for this??

Tuesday, May 1, 2007

effin

As a funny 'aside' from the rest of the stuff, I wanted to share something that Rick and I were talking about the other day.
Rick, I believe, is in his 50's. Very nice guy, down to earth and great sense of humour. I was talking to one of the other teachers about something, and I said that I was 'pissed off'. Rick, who was at the other end of the room, came up to me and asked me what I said, he said 'you were WHAT?' I said I was 'pissed off', then I said 'oh, I said that too loudly, didn't I?' We laughed about that and then he started to tell me about a book he was reading. He said there was a lot of swearing in the book, but they also said EFFIN and spelled it that way. He said 'e-f-f-i-n'. What do I do??? 'EFFIN?' Loudly. Then I got it. Hahahaha. We had a good laugh over my slowness. Now we sort of jokingly spell the first couple of letters of things to each other.

Good Things CAN Happen

After my previous post, and wondering about good and bad things, something really good happened today. I try to let things go, to let my higher power do what is right for me and my family. Sometimes I agree, sometimes I don't.
At the last minute today, I went to a meditation meeting. It's literally across the street from work. I talked about that before, how work/Leah/meetings are all so close to each other...it's ideal for me. Anyway, at this meditation, I was thinking about letting things go and sort of 'going with the flow'. I left the meeting early, feeling the need to get outside. I checked my phone messages and there was one from Heather's daycare asking me to call. She didn't go to school today, she was sick and hung out with my mother, so I knew it wasn't anything bad about her. I called Peggy (manager of daycare) and she told me that Leah has a spot there, and since siblings are priority Heather has a permanent spot as well. We've been on this waiting list for over 2 years. There was vertually no chance of them getting into it. It has one of the longest waiting lists in the city. I couldn't believe it. At Leah's current daycare they recently sent a letter asking parent's to let them know if their child is staying or leaving for next year. They have a long list as well, it's infant to kindergarten. One of my biggest dilemas for next year was Leah and if Heather didn't get into that daycare. Leah is fine to stay where she is for JK (there's junior and senior kindergarten here-kids start at 4 yrs). Now, because of this phone call, Heather and Leah are in the same school and the same daycare. Being a single parent, I also qualify for subsity, meaning I don't pay for all of my daycare. It is a bonus, as it's so expensive.
I was a bit worried about telling Leah about it, she loves her daycare so much and she has close friends there. Not to mention how I feel about them. Many of the teachers, and the manager there, have known me throughout my 'ordeal' and have been extremely supportive. There is one male teacher there in the JK room, Rick. He is amazing. We joke all the time, but he is the most positive male influance in Leah's life (yes, including her father).
Once again, I'm floored by letting things go and not stressing over them. It does not, by any means, mean that life is perfect. It means that I do trust what I believe to be my higher power to do what is best for me.
Pretty neat stuff!

Monday, April 30, 2007

Driving in Toronto? ... NOT!

I got my driver's licence reinstated today. It's been a year. In Dec/2005, I was arrested for DUI. It was at the time that my 'bottom' was truly visable to me. In Ontario, there are manditory minimum sentances for DUI. First, I spent the night in jail. Next, I lost my licence for a 3 month suspension period. Then, I was fined a year losing my licence, $1000 fine, and a 'Back on Track' program that people convicted are required to complete. Actually, the day I was arrested I truly didn't have that much to drink. Anyone who knows what the numbers mean would be shocked. I blew 340, and I should have been comatose. I wasn't. Judge said that may indicate there is a problem. Duh!
So, I completed the program (3 components to it, takes about a year), have not driven in a year, and am paying my fine off. The next part...Interlock device in my van for a year. Doesn't sound too bad, you blow into a breathalizer each and every time you start the vehicle. I can live with that, as I don't drink at all and it will always blow '0'. Problem is...it costs $125 to install and it's $100/month to maintain. Crap. I don't dispute the sentance or fine, but it never ends. The thing is, I have straightened out my life. I am the best person and mother I can be. I am working as much as I can to support us. I think there should be a clause that says that if I am in AA and maintaining my sobriaty I shouldn't have to have the interlock. Or the gov't should pay for it. I think that's fair, don't you? Hahaha.
On another post, a woman listed a bunch of 'things' and each had a 'fine' attached to it. After honestly participating in this, I don't think I should be the only one in 'blogland' with this interlock. Mine was one of the lower 'fines' , and I thought I was bad until I read some of the other 'fines'. Just goes to show you that perception is sometimes difficult to view.

Saturday, April 28, 2007

Going back to high school

My high school had it's 50th reunion today. The school, NOT my class. I was toying with the idea, if I should go or not, so I emailed some friends from high school that I still keep in touch with. I talked to my kids about it as well. One friend, Ramona, emailed back and said that for sure she was into going. Heather was interested in going as well, so that meant that Leah was as well. Ramona has 2 kids that are more or less the same age as mine are. We ended up meeting there this afternoon. There were so many people there, the school was packed. I did see my sister there, I saw her this morning when she left to go there. Living next to her, I actually do see occasionally outside. It was okay, but I was very dissapointed to see that very few of us from 'the Crowd' were there. Ramona and I started to talk about our lives in high school. In the caf, the benches looked exactly the same (then I found out that they WERE the same!). We had a fairly close group in high school and we did call ourselves the Crowd. It's so funny to think about it now. We were such geeks! We were the 'good' kids who didn't smoke, didn't do drugs, didn't drink, and didn't have sex. The majority of us went to university, and many of my friends were honour students (I was not one of them). Ramona and I were closest of friends in school, and over the past 20 years we have stayed friends. Even when I lived in BC, whenever I was in Toronto we saw each other. Our kids get along, especially our oldest...both girls and only 5 months apart. The weird thing is her oldest, Olivia, looks exactly like Ramona. I'm told that Heather looks just like I did. Watching them play together brought back so many memories, although we did not know each other when we were 7. It was like watching ourselves as little kids. Weird, but neat. One thing we commented on was at the school how the kids who attend it now are so territorial about it. I guess we were at that time as well, but it was strange asking where things where when we graduated from the same place before those kids who attend now were born.
We had planned on coming back here for a playdate and dinner, but Ramona's husband had made plans for them without checking first. It was fine, we had our visit and the kids played at the school. Once we got home, Heather called one of her friends. The mom called back, we ended up going for gelato nearby, then Heather invited herself for a sleepover there. It's her first one at that friend's house, but it's all good. Heather loves sleepovers and this friend and her family are very nice. I got to know the mom a bit tonight, and she is nice, honest, and a caring person. Heather's friend, Stephanie, is 1 month younger than Heather. Andrea, her little sister is exactly (almost to the day) one year older than Leah. Sitting back now, the day flowed nicely. We were busy, saw old friends, and spent time with new friends. I think that's how a Saturday should be. Hope you had a good Saturday as well!

Monday, April 23, 2007

Gratitude...

Today was a busy day. My ex brought the girls home at 7:30 this am. He finally remembered to bring their bikes back, which is good because the weather has been great (exept for this afternoon). He walked my older one to school, it's faster to walk the block than to drive. Leah and I took the bus and subway, as usual. I worked for a few hours, then went to my AA meeting. This meeting that I go to on Monday's is a sort of special group. I have just become secretary of the group; that means I welcome people, do announcements, and hand out chips (coins for periods of sobority in the first year). It's pretty neat, especially since I go to many meetings I know lots of people. Today I was chairperson for the meeting. I pick people to read stuff and choose the main speaker. Today I chose my neighbour, Eric, to speak. It got me thinking about all of the 'coincidences' in my life. When we moved back to Toronto a couple of years ago, all I could think of was how we were right 'in' Toronto. I see things differently now. I can see how things work out for a reason, and it's damn interesting to see. Out of all of the places in this huge concrete mountain/jungle, I share a driveway with an AA member, long before I am one myself. I live next to my sister, our houses are attached (she owns both sides of the semi). My younger daughter goes to a great daycare that is close by. We do take the bus and subway, but it's very close in Toronto terms. There is a church next door to the daycare and another church one street south. Between the 2 churches there are 5 meetings a week. I work a block away from this as well. That is unheard of in Toronto. I am not going to get into religion by any means, but part of AA is beliving in a 'higher power'; something or someone who is higher than you or me. The concept itself is great. I cannot control things, I have no control over people/places/things, but something has to. I love it! When I had no idea what was going on in my own life, this 'power' was planning all of this. I can care for my children, work, and attend AA all in the same area. One of the best things is my work is very flexible with my schedule. As long as my work gets done, I can leave when I need to. Today was one of those days where I did have to leave for my meeting, and then I had a phone appointment at 2:30. At the scheduled time for my appointment, I let them know I was leaving and went downstairs so I could have my call in privacy. No questions asked from work. How wonderful. Don't get me wrong, it's not the perfect work place, but it is a good one for me. I really can't think of too many places that would allow me to just leave when I had to for over an hour 3-4 times a week.
I hear of so many people that have long commutes to get to work, work late, don't see their kids much and are so tired at the end of the day. The other great thing I did today...I was finished my am work, so left a few minutes early. I went to Leah's daycare for 10 minutes to say hello, and she 'read' me 'Goodnight Moon'. How many parents do that in the middle of the day? I am truly blessed. When I'm in a yucky mood, I must remember to read this again. Remind myself to count my blessings and write a long gratitude list. I do try to keep this list handy, but often I do forget about it.

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

It Helps to Work for a Lawyer

I work in a lawyers office. Not just any lawyer, my family (divorce) lawyer. I started there a few months ago after I got the girls back. My ex, Scott, had decided one day after an overnight that he was not going to bring the girls home. He changed their schools and daycare and denied my access for about 3 weeks. I wasn't totally blameless in this, I had joined AA by that time and had begun to take control of my disease, but he didn't know that. Anyway, not the point. At the lawyers office, I do all of the filing, plus a bunch of other stuff. I was working away today and the ex phones me on my cell. We're trying to get to a final agreement with the kid stuff and things are going back and forth. We sent his lawyer stuff a few weeks ago, I think a very fair offer for him. I'm giving him more access time with the girls, and being flexible with time as well. There are provisions in there in case either of us get sick, or either one of us is concerned with the other in terms of caring for the girls. I am a recovering alcoholic, but that doesn't mean I always will be recovering. He has a huge history smoking pot, growing it (in our backyard in BC), and he also drinks a lot. He's been known on many occasions to drink 15 or so beers in a night, plus the other stuff. The wording is such that it protects the children. After asking him many times to deal with this and get it over with, he still had not talked to his lawyer about it. He was also Ordered to pay me some costs associated with last year's court. He paid almost half and I haven't heard anything since then. He called me today while I was working to tell me that he was going to be looking over the stuff that we sent him 3 weeks ago, and then he'd talk to his lawyer. I told him that the divorce itself was going nowhere, and it would never happen if he didn't do something. See, I'm big on the piece of paper and the symbols. He didn't care if we got married, in his eyes we already were. I wanted the rings (yes, 2 of them) and the paper that said we were married. Well, that's changed now. I still wear 2 rings...one is a family ring with my and my daughter's birthstones, the other is an amythist ring I bought myself when I achieved my one year medallion in AA. I'm sure you can see where I'm going with this...I want the piece of paper that says I'm divorced! After I got off the phone with the ex, I told my co-workers that I was going for a break. I came back, and after they asked how I was I told them all I wanted was the piece of paper that said I wasn't married to him any more. The two assisstants are so sweet...they made one for me. As we work for a family lawyer, all of the things are right there in the computer. It's not legal by any means, but after they 'presented' it to me they told me I should put it up and look to it as a goal to achieve. Exept for the legal Seal and being signed by a judge, it is the same as it will be. They were so thoughtful. It's nice especially since one is married and trying for a baby, and the other is almost engaged.
I was trying to upload a picture, but it wasn't working for me today. Oh well, it's the thought that counts. That's how I felt today, it doesn't matter that the Order isn't official, it's the kindness and thoughtfullness that counts. I truly hope you have people in your life who as thoughtful! I feel much better now that I've written this.

Saturday, April 14, 2007

Happy Saturday.

The Bar Mitzvah was today, it was very nice. My nephew did his Torah part and was very good. All who participated were great. My kids were amazing. They were almost well behaved.
The lunch after was unbelievable. My sister has always been the creative type. She was always the one in school who got top marks, had great jobs and a nice family. She also makes a lot of money. Don't get me wrong, she works VERY hard. I'm just not too sure what she does. Mostly she buys houses and upgrades them to double the price of them. She's become a realtor to sell her own houses. Anyway, one of the things she has done a few times is make a video for important occasions. She made one for my wedding, and for my neices Bat Mitzvah, and she made one for her son to show today. Now, I don't mean just a little home video, I mean she goes all out for these things. My nephew is a hockey guy, plays it, watches it, and lives it. My sister, being who she is, is the manager of his team and goes to ALL of his games. She is the only one who is allowed to carry his stick. He's goalie, and he's got lots of equipment. For the video, she took clips from the time he was an infant to the rehersal this past Thurs night. Part of the video was a hockey part. She got the 2 guys from 'Hockey night in Canada' (Don Cherry, etc) to announce that it was Michael's Bar M. She also took clips from other players' talking about players' and how amazing they were. They were all made to appear as they were talking about my nephew. It was awesome. Don't get me wrong, I wouldn't trade places with her for the world, but I do admire the things she can do.
The other thing that is done at a Bar M is the candle lighting. There are 12 candles it, and generally close family and friends are asked to come and light one with the Mitzvah kid. What was amazing about this one is the fact that my nephew sung songs without any music about the people who were to light the candles. Our's (the girls and I) were to the theme of Brady Bunch, all about a lady with '2 girls of her own'. The wording and songs were all so appropriate for everyone who went up there. It was great. The restaurant had 2 floors and what they did was have the adults on the main floor and the kids upstairs. My sister and her family also like to gamble and play cards; her husband was a blackjack dealer on a cruise, that's how they met. The placecards to let us know what table we were at were done as pictures of cards, the tables had the actual cards on them. The kids upstairs were all given poker chips and there were tables with real dealers. Tons of gifts for all as well, not just the winners. I guess the point is, there was so much effort and details put into this thing that you couldn't help but to have a good time.
On a final note, I have decided that my girls will have Bat Mitzvah's. They both want one, but their father is not Jewish so they are both. I went over to my sister's after and watched as Michael opened his presents and cards. He scored over $11000, not including the gifts and gift cards. Wow, not bad for a days 'work'. I'm wondering if it's too late for me to have one (yes, I'm pretty sure it is).
Hope your Saturday was as great as mine was. I could watch that video again (I did at my sister's after we got home), and again.

Friday, April 13, 2007

I have beautiful daughters!




My nephew's Bar Mitzvah is tomorrow. The family is very excited about it, 150 or so of my sister's closest friends and our relatives. It should be fun. A few months ago, my sister talked to me about our part in the Bar M, our part being my daughter's and I. There are certain things that are done during the service/ceremony that honoured people are asked to do. I don't speak or read Hebrew, so that was out of the question. Anyway, we decided that Heather, who is almost 8, will represent us by opening the arc where the Torah is kept. Very cool duty. Anyway, we had the rehearsal and photos last night and the Canter (the guy that sings) said that Leah is too cute not to do anything. He made an executive decision that she could open the arc with Heather and my aunt. Again, very cool. There is a rule that one is supposed to be 8 to do stuff, guess the Canter didn't care. The girls were so cute during rehearsal.
While there, I was taking some pictures of them by a stained glass window. My uncle then pointed the window to me and he told me that it was dedicated to my great grandparent's who died many years ago. It was so neat, I had no idea and was taking pics of the girls. It was neat to see my last name there on such a beautiful piece of art and realize that my grandfather dedicated it to his parent's.
I'll write more about how the Bar Mitzvah was over the next couple of days. We have a busy weekend with that, the long lunch after it, and we are going to the Science Centre Sunday with some friends. Can't wait for work Monday so I can relax. I'm going to attempt to post pictures from yesterday, hope they turn out okay!