Showing posts from March, 2005

3 Princesses Chat

3 princesses, originally uploaded by Sabren. Kia supplying all the voices and dialogue for conversation between Belle, Aurora (Sleeping Beauty), and Ariel.

Aurora: (high pitched breathy voice) Oh, isn't it a beautiful day!

Belle: (slightly deeper voice) No, I can't see anything.

Ariel: (squeak of a voice, dreamily) I can see the ocean.

Belle: (Pouting) Well, not me!

Aurora: Ladies, ladies please, you're giving me a headache!

The American Idol Dream

Russ and I are living the American Idol dream. We drive a Ford Focus and a Ford Escape. We don't sing cheesy, Up With People, type songs while driving them though. In our defense we purchased both vehicles before Ford became the marketing whore to AI. I do have that fact to cling to.

Save the Panda's!

I was out surveying some new paper just arrived at a Local Scrapbooking Store. It was beautiful. It cost $1.79 per sheet. No kidding. You'd think they were hand-dyed by Giant Panda's in China.

March 30th Post

Loving: Kodak Portra 400 NC film, believe the hype.
Wanting: blooming, green grass and trips to the playground
Hating: Snow mold. And other words only spoken in Northern Canada.
Reading: Blogs, blogs and more blogs. Everyone seems to have one. Libraries are on the brink of extinction.

Tales from the Island Sandbox

I attended grade 1 through 3 living in Mill Bay and Cobble Hill on Vancouver Island.

Grade 1: Tiny school that only had two grades, kindergarten and grade 1. I could already read and so I was often sent to sit in the book corner while the teacher worked with the students on various reading comprehension assignments. I remember there being a lot of snakes to be found outside of the school. Boys would regularly be found running after girls with a snake in hand...there were no recess or lunch hour outdoor supervisers in those was survival of the fastest. Luckily, I could run like the wind and never had one shoved down my shirt, I had friends that were not so lucky. Sadly, I can't recall any of my classmates name or the name of my teacher.

Grade 2: Different school. It was located in a heritage home and surrounded by deep forests. Frogs were the animals to catch at this school and they could be found in droves. I remember my Grandma sewed me 3 dresses that all had matching pur…

Do's and Don'ts of Spring Break with a 5 year old

Do redecorate her bedroom, as this will make her bedroom 'cool' again and she will happily let you blog your brains out, as she wants more time in her beach party bedroom.

Don't think that life will be perfect. Expect meltdowns and hide the easter chocolate.

Do set up some sort of alarm system in the kitchen in a vain effort to control intake of said item above.

Don't let her put chocolate syrup on the ice cream she managed to beg for and get for breakfast. That will show her.

Do venture out of the house. It may give you a reason to surrender the self-imposed laundry strike you put in place on Good Friday.

Do pick your battles. If pulling something out of the storage room will produce hours of happy offspring play, for the love of Pete do it!

Don't look at the calendar...a watched calendar makes for loooonnnggg days.

Any sightings?

grandma and grandpa, originally uploaded by Sabren. Just wondering if there have been any Mom and Dad sightings...or any soon expected...

Easter Sunday

The community Easter program was today at Bearspaw Chapel. It is an annual event where we celebrate the true Easter message with the membership and invited friends in our community. The program is full of scripture, images of the Savior and music celebrating the life of Christ. It is a Sunday that I really enjoy.

Today, I especially enjoyed listening to the song, "I have not seen, yet I believe." Click on the link and have a listen, you'll be happy you did. It is a song that always moves me. Written by the talented church composer Sally DeFord the lyrics read:
They heard his voice; they saw his face
The promised Savior come to earth in days long past
They saw him heal the sick and cause the lame to stand
They watched as wind and waves were stilled at his command
And though I did not see him calm the raging seas
His hand has calmed my troubled heart
And I believe

They heard his voice; they saw his face
They heard his teachings of forgiveness, love and faith
He blessed their little …

Looooooong Good Friday

I feel like I've been up for days. It soon became apparent that something was going on with Kia. She mentioned to us that her ear was bothering her. After I took some Easter photos of her she just didn't seem her happy self, plus she couldn't hear anything I said to her. Even without her hearing aids she has a fairly good chance of hearing me when we have eye contact and I speak clearly, she just couldn't hear anything.

So what to do? Do I sit in the Medicentre for 3 hours to get a prescription or have them say she is fine. I ended up phoning her Pediatrician and having him phone in a prescription. Dr. Hasinoff didn't seem thrilled that I had called his on-call pager number and his voice was devoid of inflection and humour (Bueller, Bueller, anyone?), but oh well, he's bound to retire soon...and I just didn't want to risk an untreated ear infection for my hearing loss girl. So $1.94 later and a bottle of Amoxicillin (banana flavored) Kia is hopefully on the …

Sunshine is in a better place...

I don't know if it was the exceptionally long winter, or the fact that Sunshine just doesn't phone anymore, but the Sunshine Blog was deleted today.

It was a good run. But alas, too time consuming to continue. Thanks to all the faithful readers of Sunshine Lives, the online journal of Kari-Lynn's dead cat, who had virtually the same haircut his entire life.

It's safe to assume he is no longer haunting her basement or using Richard's basketball shoes as his personal litter box. Stay gold, Sunshine. Stay gold.

Desperately Seeking Spring


Tulips blooming, April showers, the hint of summer on the breeze, days that beg to be enjoyed outdoors, a reason to wear my spring jackets and a reason to pack up my winter mittens.


One of my regular forms of exercise is yoga, and this morning I decided to attempt a 90 minute advanced yoga workout. The first 60 minutes went by rather quickly. The last 30 minutes were painfully slow and I seemed aware of each second that passed. This wasn't relaxing, easy yoga. This was intense-balance-on-your-head and point-your-toes-to-heaven, power yoga type stuff. I was attempting to channel Madonna, but I fell somewhat short. Oh well, I showed up.

Lesson learned: 60 minutes of Yoga is good enough for this chica.

Lessons learned from boys

1) Men stink. Really. My brother's bedroom was a virtual river of stink. Sports equipment, cruddy jeans, balled sweat socks all proving an aroma reminiscent of the shrimp boats a'comin' in. This is a handy little lesson to learn early on, and makes life with future relationships less unsettling.

2) Men and woman need one another. There is a story told of my Dad; he was fixing an old VW beetle, got frustrated with the process and literally threw the car across a field. Boys are really amazing, but moments like this teach us that perhaps we need a good a mix of men and women in positions of leadership to run the world effectively.

3) Friendship and teasing go hand in hand. Knowing someone's insecurities and finding ways to mess with a friends head is an attempt to bond. Really. It may not be the best way to bond, but it can be an invitation to friendship when done correctly.

4) Boys often speak with looks. A scowl after meeting your new boyfriend means, "Dump the ne…

Bodies in the River

A friend of mine has a son with Tourettes and Aspergers Syndrome. Her son is now a teenager and a really great guy. Things are not always easy for this family, and I can only imagine the challenges they face on a daily basis. I had the oppurtunity to chat with her a bit today and it was a really great conversation.

Her son is Napolean Dynomite in both mannerism and appearance. So, for the first time in his life, he's cool in school. A wave the entire family is happily riding and enjoying. He has memorized the lines of the movie and has almost managed to master the entire dance montage from the movie. Phrases about "chapstick" and "tots" can be heard on a regular basis around the home.

She also recently attended a Tourettes Workshop, which she describes as being both helpful and interesting. Imagine being in a room full of people with Tourettes. Now, imagine the majority of the people in the room with some sort of 'tick'. For instance, one person is shouti…

Weekend Assessment

Friday - We ditched the Revolutionary, ie Kia, and headed out to the Outback for a celebratory meal with Russyl's work. They were celebrating the fact that they have filled the books for the upcoming year and it was only March. Reason to celebrate for any company. So we spent the night laughing, chatting and catching up with Russyl's co-workers.

Saturday - Russ woke up looking like death. White faced, and silent in his misery, he had the symptoms of a full blown sinus infection. He dozed in and out of consciousness throughout the day. Kia and I went out and did some shopping, did some chores around the house and watched movies. The weather was depressing, so we didn't feel much like venturing out, for more than the basics. Aubryn came over in the evening and the two girls spent the night playing fairies and princesses.

Sunday - Russ still sick, but went to church anyway. It's spring tomorrow and I was cleaning snow off my car, for what could be the 200th time this winter…

Tour of Lendrum Elementary

Lendrum Elementary School operates under a Total Communication Program.It is a small school where tolerance, understanding and respect for others is emphasized.The student population at Lendrum includes those whose needs can be met within regular programming parameters, as well as those who require adaptation to the regular program due to hearing impairments, multi-sensory handicaps, physical handicaps, or varying degrees of emotional and academic deficits.The school believes in, and provides, a secure and supportive environment based on mutual respect, cooperation and acceptance.Students are encouraged to make responsible decisions and to develop independent learning skills.Kia would not qualify for the hearing loss program as her hearing isn't above 71 decibels, but she could be in a regular classroom at the school. The teachers and assistants in the hearing loss program seem run ragged. They currently have a student from Lebanon who has no english and very little sign. They req…

My Insane Day

7:30 - Russ wakes Kia and me up before he leaves for work.

7:45 - Kia sits zombie like on the couch; staring at the black TV screen and not eating her cereal.

8:15 - We are dressed, lunch is packed, hearing aids in, FM charged and ready and we head out to school. Kia has a field trip to the Provincial Museum at 8:45. For which she will be very hungry.

8:30 - I arrive at the church to set up the tables for the March 17th Mad Hatter Party. Calee and Carol are there and we got to work. The tables will be set up into one long table large enough for 50+ sisters. We had teapots and teacups filled with candies and other goodies spread haphazardly down the length of the table.

8:45 - The table is set and it is looking great. I still have 30 minutes to help get the cultural hall ready. Kari-Lynn has also arrived and we continue putting finishing touches on the table and the room.

9:15 - I head to Lendrum Elemtary for a tour of the school.

9:30 - Candy, the parent support liason from the Glenrose, me…

Random Thoughts for Wednesday

- I'm really glad I no longer have a dayhome and I really admire people who do.

- There aren't many words that begin with the letter x. It really is an undervalued little letter.

- Russ and I are trading vehicles tomorrow. It always feels weird to trade vehicles. Russ keeps trying to convince himself and me that they're both ours, equally. Come on, that's not true. The line in the sand was clearly drawn upon purchase. He drives the Escape, I drive the Focus. He sleeps on the right side of the bed, I sleep on the left. I eat white meat, he eats dark. These things will never change.

- Croissants smell unbelievably edible when one is hungry and packing a carload full of fresh, buttery croissants to church for the March 17th party.

- I really do not enjoy (okay, loathe entirely) salamanders, lizards, frogs, and/or stick bugs and so Kia will not have the joy of caring for classroom pets during spring break. I observe them on a somewhat horrified level and cannot fathom why any…


joy, originally uploaded by Sabren. Joy
My Girl.

Picky, picky, picky...

Most readers of this blog know how picky my dear husband Russ is. He does not eat fruit. Nada, zip, zero. He will drink apple juice. That's about as good as it gets regarding fruit consumption. He only eats certain vegetables. Corn, peas, green beans, lettuce, carrots, celery, onions (sparingly), and nothing else. Seriously.

So tonight we had some friends over for supper. I love having other people over because it gives me a reason to cook things that Russ and Kia won't eat. Things that I can't eat all by myself. So I made a tomato, cheese and basil salad, lemon salmon and roasted baby potatos. The other day when the missionaries came over I made a huge fruit salad. And they helped me eat every last bite (missionaries are starved for fresh fruit salads...apparantley they are rarely served at members homes).

I highly recommend this to anyone expecting company. Make the things that you enjoy but rarely have willing candidates to help you eat it on a regular family meal night. …

Church Notebook

I keep a church notebook these days. I jot down ideas and impressions, quotes and scriptures I would like to search more indepth in my personal study time. I have been reading through the pages today and two principles seemed to pop out and join in my mind.

Unity and Sacrament

We discussed the Sacrament a few weeks ago in Sunday school. Going into why we have a church, why we partake of the sacrament and the meaning of this principle individually and as a congregation. Today in Relief Society we studied "The Blessings of Unity" by David O. McKay.

David O. McKay seems to introduce a formula.

Seperate Individuals or Parts / Acting as One = Higher Purpose

So it got me thinking about the sacrament. So bear with me, as the understanding is not quite as eloquent as I would like it to be but it is a profound A-HA moment in my life.

We partake of the sacrament individually. Each one of us contemplating our own divine role and personal goals in relation to Christ and His Gospel. The act of…

What do you want?

Do you ever ask yourself this question? What is your answer? What is your answer when it is based on the work you can do, and not based on a lottery win or some other immediate influx of cash?

I sometimes don't have an answer to this question that is satisfying to myself. I want my family to be healthy and cared for. I want our needs met. Yet, I sometimes live vicariously through my families experiences. I feel so much joy from Russyl's successes and Kia's accomplishments that I neglect my own.

Needless to say, I'm feeling like I've lost some of my direction. I need to get back on track with my personal goals. I'm unconcerned with timetables and instead focus on the journey.

I came across some quotes that helped and inspired:
Don't let life discourage you: Everyone who got where he is had to begin where he was. R. Evans

Decide what you want to be - pay the price and be what you want to be. John A. Widtsoe.

It's not what you were, it's what you are toda…


Buddy, originally uploaded by Sabren. Our old fat pig, of a wonderful dog, Buddy. For Scott.


RCMP, originally uploaded by Sabren. Driving home from the Glenrose was a touching journey. As we came down Groat Road and passed Hawrlek Park you could see streams of Red and Black. Mounties and mourners, dressed in somber black, walking from the memorial service in the area.

They stood on every corner. It made me think of how much these brave men and women sacrifice on the job. They seemed to be standing there and reminding us all that they lost 4 of their friends and beseeching the passerby to not forget them.

It was very touching, and I just don't want to forget how moved I was by their display of remembrance for too many friends tragically taken.

My Roots

russ and Keeks, originally uploaded by Sabren. I adore this photo of Russ and Keeks. I feel blessed having them in my life.


Moderation in a world of excess is difficult to achieve. We are targeted to be the consumer of everything. And when we feel over run with 'stuff' we need to have a bigger space or somehow neatly organize our junk into plastic bins. I like what flylady has to say about that: Clutter cannot be organized. I get it, but it's really hard to live it.

I've been wanting and whining for a new camera for quite a long time. Everyone who is anyone has a bigger and better camera than me, or so I pout. Their camera's do things that mine can never achieve. A different camera would be more acceptable for photo shoots and impress my audience. The money is there... All these things are true. The fact is, I don't think I'm ready for the latest and greatest. I'm still learning so much from my ancient Pentax.

I feel connected to a history when I use it. Like I'm somehow linked with the struggling photography lovers of yesteryear. I like that my Mom used this camera. That …


Viewing 71 (at least)

The movie is at the part where Pocahontas comes into the room where John Smith is being held captive by her people, awaiting his execution.

Pocahontas: It would have been better if we'd never met. Then none of this would have to happen.

John Smith: Pocahontas, look at me. I'd rather die tomorrow than live 100 years without knowing you.

Kia: Beeeeppp, wrong answer!


Goal Setting Fireside

Weird phone call tonight. Bro. Miller phoned to ask me to be the key note speaker at the youth fireside in April. The topic is goal setting. I'm supposed to speak to 65 youth on goal setting. I immediatley started thinking about why I was asked and what on earth I had to offer, not to mention why I said yes. Apparently, so was Russ.

Russ: (turning towards me with a look of complete puzzlement) Ya, but, why you?

Me: (no kidding, why me?) Is that a vote of confidence?

Russ: I'm just asking. I mean, they have people wwaaaaay more qualified in the ward to teach...Like Anne Mackay (who is the president of the Alberta Psychiatrist Board) so why you?

Me: Ya, I wondered that same thing. I know they are getting tired of using the same key note speakers. By doing so the youth are not being introduced to the new families in the ward. So, I think I was on a short list of names who would say yes. But I also feel I have one strength in this area. The only thing I can teach them is the value…