Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Darryl

10 Great things about my husband who birthday it is this week

1. He's smart, usually smart over all of our heads.
2. He is great at most all sports, I bought him a baseball glove for his birthday and him and Lucas are enjoying playing catch outside
3. He looks very handsome in his work clothes. He's always been handsome, but now that he wears dress shirts and pants to work, I get to see it every day
5. He loves most food and he's willing to try most anything. If we are ever somewhere and I get food I don't know if I like he is willing to try it first and let me know.
6. He is great with a computer. I have all the technical support I need.
7. He is great with my family, and they love him just as much. We travel with them, spend lots of time with them, and he never complains. When I work in the evenings, he takes the boys to mom's house and has dinner with them.
8. He's so punny. No that's not a typo. He makes puns all the time. Sometimes I groan, but I'm always smiling inside.
9. He steps up. As I only work part time I do more of the domestic duties: cooking, cleaning and parenting. But if I'm feeling overwhelmed or that he isn't pulling his weight, I let him know and he steps up.
10. The most important, he is a great father. Not just a great father, but a super amazing fun father.



Happy Birthday Good Looking =)

Jenn

Monday, August 30, 2010

Nathan's Drumming Skills

I don't know if he's going to make it as a drummer, but here's a start. =)

Till Tomorrow

Jenn
video

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

The other side of the coin

I often (well almost always) talk about my kids on this blog. I often write letters telling them how much I love them (which I do) or post pictures of us having fun (which we do). But I would never want anyone to get the wrong impression. I love my kids like crazy, but parenting can be very hard work. I mean yes, someday's it is easy and fun and they do everything I ask, but other days (like today) they push limits and complain when I do let them do something and generally drive me crazy.

So if anyone reading thinks it's lollipops and sunshine all the time, I promise it's not. I can be hard. And although I love those kids like crazy and usually we are all good, there are times when it's hard and frustrating and everyone is crying.

Till Tomorrow

Jenn

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Emma Update

So we have been working with Emma based on the recommendations from the Dr., and are seeing some progress. Not sure how much of it is the medication she is on, but happy to be seeing things slowly improving.

We took a video of her a couple of days ago and although she didn't destroy anything in the house, she cried and cried and howled and howled. Breaks my heart to see her in such distress. But today we took another video of her after leaving her for an hour and she was much better. No crying or howling.

Things also seem to be getting a bit better with her paw. We got her a brace so when we take her for walks we can use it. But we have been taking her swimming a lot (thank god we live close to a clean river). And she is consistently walking on it.

Hopefully we are moving in the right direction.

Till Tomorrow

Jenn

Friday, August 20, 2010

Birthday Party!

Today we had Lucas party for all of his friends. As he is lucky enough to have his birthday in the summer and we have a big yard, the opportunity is always there for a backyard party. This year I did some research and tried to find lots of fun games we could play. We invited all of his friends over and had some good cheap fun. It was nice as my Mom took Nathan so I was able to participate in a lot of the games as well. So here is some of the highlights from the afternoon.

The first games we played was a treasure hunt. It went really well. It always takes a while to organzie it, but the kids love running around and trying to solve the clues.

Next was the Fill the Milk Jug game, I really thought this one was fun. At one side of the yard we had a bucket of water and then using sponges we would fill up the sponge with water and then run to the other side of the yard and fill up a milk jug. It was fun running back and forth and the water element always makes things fun.



Then we had a little free time, while I brought down cake and treats and drinks, then the cake and the snacks were eaten.

After that we played a Marble Toes game, where you put a bunch of marbles in a pool and the kids have to grab the marbles with their toes and throw them out of the pool. The bigger kids certainly have the advantage here. =)

Then we did a water ballon toss and a obstacle course. Lastly was opening presents, and more free time until the parents came.

All in all I think it was a good party. The games were good for all ages and most of it was stuff I had around the house.



Till Tomorrow

Jenn

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Plan of Attack

One of the big drama's in our life this summer has been Emma and everything that has been going on with her. It all stemmed from her separation anxiety. So while we are conservatively treating her wrist, we are working on her separation anxiety. Today we went to see a veterinarian who specialized in dog behavior problems. It was really helpful to meet with someone who is an expert in these issues. She identified many things with Emma that were not evident to me, her owner for the last 8 years. At one point she was talking about her being relaxed. She identified signs she was demonstrated that she wasn't relaxed.

So here is our plan of action for Emma:

1. Increase her medication
2. More exercise, swimming
3. Yawn, when she is showing signs of being tense, be relaxed, yawn
4. Protocol for Deference : she must sit for anything
5. Video her
6. Protocol for relaxation
7. Massage her when she's calm
8. Play classical music for her when we are away.

I'm feeling much better about everything. It's nice to have a plan from someone who's seen Emma and who is an expert in dog behavior.

Till Tomorrow

Jenn

Monthly Newsletter: Lucas is 5






Dear Lucas,

Today you turned 5 years old and that seems unreal to me. When I think about the number it makes me feel sad and kind of old. My oldest child is already 5. Where has the time gone and how can I make it stand still. But when I think about you and the person you are, 5 is great and awesome and makes me feel proud. I love to be around you and I love the person you have become. I am so proud to send you out into the world, as I know you will be good and kind.



So lets summarize some things over the last couple of months, and talk a bit about this things I think are the most awesome about you. Summer has been fun. You have been working hard on your swimming and your reading. Swimming we have been doing lots of it in the lake in Kelowna. And in Oma and Opa's hot tub. It's amazing how a year has changed your ablilites. You are also working with Daddy in learning how to read. You are great at sounding out all of the letters in a word and trying to put all of those sounds into a word. You are a smart cookies and I love it when your vocabulary comes out. A couple of months ago you were describing a song and said you liked it because it sounded so peaceful.



You are such a nice kid. You worry if I get mad at you, you want to do things right. When I get upset you always ask if it is with you and if it is you try and rectify it. When you finished school this year, your teacher wrote you this very nice letter about what a good kid you are. You care about people and your friends and your family. The other day the salmon was all gone at dinner and Nathan started crying, your Dad and I didn't have any left, and you did. And although you love salmon, you gave it to him because he wanted it so much. You are also good at helping around the house. It is a normal occurrence for you to clear your plate without me having to ask. And you don't cause a stink when I ask you to clean your room or help to clean up the playroom, or another mess you've helped to create.



You are certainly growing in your interests. Gone are the days of trucks and Diego and Cars. And in are the days of Spiderman and Star Wars. You love to play video games and eat oatmeal. You can be picky about food, although will often try things at someone else's home and then report to me after that "oh now I like red grapes". You like pasta and meat and cheese and mashed potatoes.


You love your Grandma and Pop, all of your 3 super fun Aunts and Grammie. You love playing with your brother and share alot of similar interests with Darryl. It's amazing to watch you and Darryl together. You can see there are different times when you both look at each other with "ahhh". Like I can't believe Daddy can do that, or if Daddy is looking at you thinking " I can't believe Lucas can do that".




You continue to love music, if we don't have it playing you will often request it. And you have great taste in music. You love Queen and Prince and Glee and the Weakerthans. You will sing along with Lady Gaga and the Beatles.


Lucas you are such an amazing kid. I don't know how I got so lucky. Lucas I didn't know it was possible to love another person so much until you came into my life. And the more you grow and the more I get to know you as a person the more I love you and the bigger my heart gets.

love mommy

Monday, August 16, 2010

Daddy-less Weekend.

This weekend Darryl flew home to surprise his mom for her birthday. I heard it was a great surprise, although I'd love to see pictures if anyone has them. =) He had a great weekend with his family and his best friend. He ate well, chatted lots and laughed lots.

But the boys and I had a really fun weekend too. We have some special treats that we do when Darryl goes away. So on Saturday night we watched a movie and ate popcorn in bed. The only kicker was I didn't see how long the movie was so we were up much later then expected. Then Lucas slept in the bed with me. Another night Nathan cried out

On Sunday we got a lot accomplished. We went to the park, then did groceries, then came home and played outside. It was quite hot so we turned on the sprinkler. I got some good pictures.








Till Tomorrow

Jenn

Monday, August 09, 2010

Emma and Carpal Hyperextension Part 2


We met with the veterinarian again today for a progress report on Emma. Her splint actually broke at some point on our trip so we took it off her yesterday afternoon. She had been putting a little bit of weight on it but spent a lot of time walking on three legs. It was better then it was a week ago, but still not healed all the way. Plus when she walks on it you can see her wrist bend all the way down. So it looks like she does have the carpal hyper extension.

So the question is what to do next. The only option is really surgery. So the Dr. told me more about the surgery. The surgery does not fix the problem. Emma will always walk this way no matter what. The surgery will help to prevent arthritis occuring as quickly but it won't stop the arthritis nor will it make her walk better again. The other part of the surgery is that we can have it done at any time. It's not something that needs to be done right away.

I did do some research on the internet and there are a couple of companies that sell splints that are more flexible then what she has been wearing. They are splints we can take on and off. We can use it when she walks but take it off at night.

So I think the plan for now is to have Emma wear the splint and see how it goes. Part of me is sad that Emma won't ever be a crazy running dog like she was. Another part of me is glad to have all the information about the 3000$ surgery so I don't feel like putting my happiness above Emma's or vice versa. Anyway so that is the story... for now....

Till Tomorrow

Jenn

Sunday, August 08, 2010

Kelowna 2010

Well another summer vacation has come and gone. Whenever coming home from Kelowna I always get the sense that summer is over. Although we still have lots of summer to go, it is still a bit of a let down. This was another successful vacation. Although the weather wasn't as good as it was when we were there a couple of weeks ago, it was still lots of fun. Emma didn't enjoy herself as much as she normally does, but she rolled with the punches. I'll post an update on her tomorrow after we go see the vet.




Here is Emma at the water park. There are lots of big trees there, so she could come with us and sit in the shade.

The yearly picture of the kids on the bear statute.

Lucas, Nathan and I warming up after playing in the water park.
Lucas's favorite thing at the waterpark was the slide. You don't really go that fast, but he loved to do it.

My 3 favorite boys playing in the hot tub.


Oma and Opa have a couple of woodpeckers around there house. I know this may sound crazy, but I don't think I'd ever seen one in real life. Here he is eating ants out of the ground. He was bigger then I expected too.




A couple of picture of Lucas and I in the lake. Lucas continues to be a really good swimmer. Although it took him most of the week to really swim in the cold lake, once he was out there he did a really great job. But then it was fun to go "deep" (with a life jacket on of course.) I love that he loves to swim like his mom does.

We love to go to Kelowna for the beaches and swimming. Here are Lucas and Pop in the midst of playing with a beach ball. One of my favorite memories of Kelowna this year was about my dad. Later in the week, Mom and Dad drove out as they needed to be out of their house for a bit. We were eating lunch out on the deck with them (as we eat every meal outside when we are in Kelowna) and Mom mentioned a time when Lucas cried over the dessert that Mom had made. That made Dad laugh so hard his whole face turned red. We were all laughing so hard at him laughing it was making all of us cry too. It was a funny moment.



Oma and Opa are really great hosts. And luckily they really love us and the boys. Another one of my favorite memories from the trip was one evening we were all sitting around chatting and we were recalling some of the funny stories from when Mom was growing up and Oma and Opa's life here in Canada. Some of those stories are so priceless, they would make a great book.

Till Tomorrow

Jenn

Thursday, August 05, 2010

Hand Shuffleboard

Even though I've (obviously) known Oma and Opa my whole life, they still surprise me. This summer when the weather was not good one day (I know surprising in Kelowna) Oma and Opa brought out a hand shuffle board game. You take the wooden discs and slide them down and try to get them into holes at the other end. Lucas was very good at it, although I think the faces he made really helped him. Nathan and I were both so so, and Darryl (as he is naturally good at most things) was very good at it too. Here are some good pictures.









Till Tomorrow

Jenn

Best of Friends



These four boys are the best of friends. Luckily their parents are really like each other too, but by some stroke of magic they all get along as well.



I feel so lucky to have them all in my life.

Till Tomorrow

Jenn

Sunday, August 01, 2010

Emma and Carpal Hyperextension.

On Thursday I left Emma for a short while to try and get her use to being alone. I took the kids to the day home, stopped at another store and then came home. When I got home one of our neighbors were waiting outside and Emma was limping. They asked if Emma had been limping before today. And no she hadn't been. So I did a little investigating and saw that the screen in Nathan's window was ripped. Nathan room is on the second floor, so we are thinking that she came looking for us and jumped out the window. In that jump she must have hurt her leg/paw. So next stop was the vet. They examined her and determined it was her wrist that was the most painful. Then they x-rayed it. But found no fracture in her bones. They sent her home with some painkillers and told us to ice it. For the rest of the day she wouldn't weight bear on it at all.

The next morning, although we were hoping it would be better. It wasn't. The doctor called back after discussing Emma's symptoms with a surgeon, determined that the most likely diagnosis is carpal hyperextension. What that means is that Emma has torn all of the ligaments in her wrist. They way they fix this with surgery. For the moment we are putting her in a splint, to see if that helps. Which I hope to god it will as surgery is expensive. With the splint she has been able to walk on four legs again, which she is happy about. And I am not carrying her up and down the stairs, which I'm happy about.

For the moment she is starting to act more and more like herself. Goes to the door when someone comes, this morning she wanted to go for my run with me, so those are good signs. But that won't heal the ligaments. We are going to see what happens after a couple of weeks with her wrist, but have also read there can be some success with wearing a splint/brace for longer then the 2 weeks, so we may try that and see if it works. In the mean time here is a cute picture of her and her leg.

Keep your fingers crossed for us, that the splint will help.

Till Tomorrow

Jenn