Sunday, September 27, 2009

it's not a ghost

My husband thought he'd be a help and start folding laundry while I prepared dinner. When I walked by to let him know it was time to eat I just about peed myself because I was laughing so hard at what I saw... He was wrestling with the duvet cover and I swear it took him forever to get it folded. I don't know what he was thinking but he was actually inside it.

Needless to say he wasn't amused by my laughter.

I shouldn't laugh while he's doing any chore to help me out. Don't want to discourage him from ever giving me a hand again. Sorry honey.. I just couldn't help it. xo

just a few pics

Thought I'd post a few pics of the family since it's been awhile:

Maiya in the Circle of Neglect:

Jacob in a rare quiet moment... (he just woke up... lol)

And I think one of my favourite photos.... Daddy and Maiya enjoying the sunset together from our window... xo

Saturday, September 26, 2009

eat your heart out Einstein

I've made a discovery that would make even Einstein himself proud. Sure he figured out the theory of relatively. That's child's play compared to mine that will make every mother realize she is not going insane... which is that the quantum theory of happiness is directly and proportionately relative to the behaviour of your children at any given moment in time. When Jacob has finished all his veggies and is not jumping-climbing-shouting as 3 year olds love to do, and Maiya isn't suction cupped to my boobs and sleeps through the night, I have the patience of Mother Theresa and the will of Ghandi. I can whip up a meal that would be worthy of Cordon Bleu, clean the house better than Molly Maid. And most of all.... I can get through the day without nagging my husband and perhaps even have some energy left over to entertain the thought of being Linda Lovelace. But if the kids are being naughty.... it's take-out food for dinner, and the home is doomed looking like a bomb went off. My husband's theory is simpler..... if the house is clean when he walks through the front door after work, he knows I'm in a good mood. But if it's a raging mess, no chance of Linda Lovelace... more like Linda Loveless. Sorry honey... but that's how we ended up with 2 children in the first place... lol. xo

Friday, September 25, 2009

smell of home

Despite the 7am start time, when I go to work, there is always that exciting rise in adrenaline soon as I walk through the bay doors. It's the combination of the familiar smell of axle grease, truck wash soap, bleach, and windex. And the smell of fire. I know when the previous crew had a fire because the scent of smoke still lingers in the bunker gear. That smell is addictive. And we'll gather around the coffee maker as we tag off with the other crew asking for details about the call hoping that we'll get a fire call to attend to as well. It's not that we wish that the city burn down.... it's just that we hope it's our shift on duty when it does. And each and every time I start a shift, my heart skips a beat for what the shift might bring. Ask any firefighter. It's the best job in the world. As I've said before, don't pinch me.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

the journey

Some moms worry about losing their post pregnancy baby weight. Me, I was more worried about losing my mind.

Neat freakiness aside (that's a whole other issue that borders on OCD.... lol), I was more concerned about lack of time... and sleep of course. But ironically, having children has kept me sane. Apart from running into burning buildings, I am living a healthier and safer life because of the two little lives that depend on me at home. We eat nutritious whole foods because I won't keep any junk in the house. I no longer do high speed rappelling for fun, use my bicycle to commute through crazy downtown traffic(yep... I used to bike 1 1/2 hours each way to work), or party and imbibe the way I used to during my single days. And because time is always precious, I choose to spend it wisely. I have consciously decided to let some friends go by the wayside because their negativity would bring me down.... I do not have the time nor the energy to listen to whining and needless worrying and complaints about the past or a future that hasn't even happened yet. Having children has taught me how to live in the 'now' and enjoy every little hiccup and the ups and downs that come with motherhood. I am not perfect. There are days when I think I am going to lose my mind if I have to cook one more meal or pick up one more wayward sock, or break up one more fight over toys between the two children. And I look back with longing the ability to just pick up and go where ever the mood suits my husband and I. Our camping trips into the backwoods and trekking through Europe are on hold for awhile. But we have those memories. And we are creating new ones daily with our children. My journey with them continues to unfold. xo

Monday, September 21, 2009

egg on your face

I am so happy I am not a rookie anymore. You tend to get the brunt of the 'dirty work' at calls and in station. It is a right of passage and a way to earn not only the respect of your colleagues, but it's also a way to earn your stripes and pay your dues. We've all gone through it. As a rookie you're the first one up and the last one to sit down. Anything that needs cleaning or overhauling is done quickly and without complaint (ha..... if only I could have carried that attitude about chores at home).

Or, you can be a human shield.

When I was a rookie we responded to a med call classified as 'difficulty breathing'. The patient had a stoma with a breathing tube where a tracheotomy had been performed and he had trouble clearing it due to congestion. When we arrived he was coughing through this hole in his throat to try and get the phlegm to clear. Cough and cough he did until the 'muck' was launched and airborne. My Captain decided to grab me and use me as a human shield to stop to phlegm from hitting him. Except I was faster and ducked at the last second and my Captain got a little gift in the face.

I have to admit, I was never great at following rookie rules but in some instances like this it pays to be a bit of a rebel. Saved me from getting 'egg' on my face... lol. ;)

Monday, September 14, 2009

living together

I know my children inside and out. It's a symbiotic and intimate relationship. Their body language and idiocycracies are easy for me to read simply because I am their mother and because we spend so much time together. And they, in turn, are able to read me. Jacob knows from the narrowing of my eyes if I am not pleased with naughty behaviour. And I swear even at her young age, Maiya kisses me when I am sad or upset. We feed off each other.... if I am stressed the kids start spinning out of control.... so I try to stay mellow when things get crazy at home. Jacob is a sensitive child and when he spins he is just trying to get some attention. And in that moment I need to be wise and forget about the million and one things I need to do around the house and stop whatever I happen to be doing and just give him a hug.

At work, it's much the same. Minus the hugs... we tend not be the most touchy feely kind of people. Regardless, there is a level of intimacy that develops simply from working and living together in the same close quarters. At calls we move about doing our jobs with very little need to speak to each other because we each know what needs to be done. We know when to back off and give space if someone is having a rough day and we know who can take harder ribbing and practical jokes. We know about each other's spouses, children, hobbies, likes and dislikes... down to our favourite pizza toppings, cars, dogs, and movies. We know what grosses each other out, what makes us laugh and what to do or not do to piss each other off. One observant crewmate knew that I was pregnant before I did simply by noticing how much food I was scarfing down.

Again, this is one of those posts where I have no idea where I am going or what point I am trying to make. I think I am really, realy missing the guys at work though I know once I get back to work I will be homesick. Mostly at night when I want to snuggle with my children instead of share a dorm with a bunch of snoring and farting men.

Sunday, September 13, 2009

another bestest weekend

With the baby getting most of the attention these days, I love it when I can reconnect with my first baby.... Jacob. He is one of the greatest joys of my life and I remember clear as a bell the second he was born and I looked at him and I laughed out loud because I was so happy to finally meet him. I will have to dig up that picture. If I could capture that moment of pure bliss for a minute everyday I would be the happiest person alive.

This weekend my husband was working overtime and not home till late until the evening. So on Saturday, with both children in tow I set off on our morning trek to the bakery etc. But in the afternoon, I asked my parents to watch Maiya during her nap and I took Jacob and off we went exploring the city. We found a great little street festival and Jacob was just thrilled to be able to walk around and take in all the sites. There was a gentleman making animal balloons and you should have seen the smile on Jacob's face when he got two of them! The thing that I love about my son is that he will never whine or cry when we are out browsing. He saw a ton of those cheap toys and candy from street vendors and I could see him look at them longingly but he never once asked. He would oooohhh and ahhhhh and say he liked them and continue on. We came across another vendor with a display of Hot Wheels cars and I could see Jacob lingering and I said he could have 'just one'. His little face lit up and in that moment I could have bought him that entire collection. Jacob looked them over carefully and ended up picking the Hot Wheels ice cream truck.... lol. We went home and I made dinner for my parents and they bathed the children and it was one of the most perfect days.

Today I was on my own with both children and with Jacob in the stroller and Maiya on my back we walked a half hour to an outdoor art show and petting zoo. And as much fun we had with all the exhibits and children's activities, the best part was crossing this pedestrian overpass bridge just as the stock trains were passing underneath.
I let him walk on the bridge and he stood stock still in awe for 20 minutes as the trains passed beneath him. He looked so small yet so self assured and I wish I could have let him stay there until the very last train passed but alas, it was time to go because he could barely keep his eyes open. And there was not a peep from Maiya all day. This little dolly of a girl will stay perched on my back and look around contentedly and when sleepy, just place her cheek on my back and sleep.

Both children tucked in bed and as exhausted as I am, I can say it was truly a great weekend to be a mother. xo

Friday, September 11, 2009

September 11

I cannot even begin to reason why the events of 9/11 happened to begin with. It saddens me to think that there are people who willingly set out to hurt others. It is hard to comprehend. I was almost in New York during that time.... I was planning to visit a firefighter friend to celebrate the fact that I passed my exams and firefighter physical but I canceled at the last minute. I wonder which part of the city I would have been when the Towers came down. I did fly out shortly after to visit Ground Zero and attended the funerals of some of the firefighters who, on that morning, were just doing their jobs. I was humbled and also awestruck by the attendance of emergency service workers from around the world. The streets were filled with a sea of blue uniforms standing at attention and saluting as the processions went by. I could not keep a dry eye. My thoughts and prayers to the families who are still missing their loved ones. I know that time may not heal the wounds but I hope that it may dull it a little. Take care and God Bless.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

nasty nits

Ewwwwwwwwwww. There was an outbreak of head lice at Jacob's daycare. 4 children were sent home. Thankfully the little critters spared my son. There is nothing that gives me the heebie jeebies more than head lice. Just thinking about them makes me feel all weird. I don't know why I'm such a wimp because at work I've seen it all: maggots feasting on wounds, cockroaches in the most inappropriate of places, body lice, boils and carbuncles the size of a child's fist, mummified skin that looks like leather....... I think I'm not horrified because I see that stuff on other people. But the thought of nasty little biting creatures living in my son's beautiful head of hair totally freaks me out.

I know mosquitoes love my little boy. Hopefully those head lice don't and stay far far away.

Friday, September 4, 2009

my poor babe

Jacob was chewed to bits by a hungry mosquito. He was bitten on the elbow, the side of his chin, and his eyelid. Poor little guy looks like Quasimodo now. His eye is swollen shut and the side of his chin has blown up. And his elbow is just plain itchy. I don't like giving my children any over the counter meds so I put him in the bath with baking soda and it has calmed the 'itchies'. Before bed I'll make him a chamomile compress to go over his eye.

He just looked so sad..... so my husband was lovely and set Jacob up on the couch so he could watch his Cars dvd on the computer since we still don't have a television. Took his mind off the bites and he cheered up even though he is doing everything he can to not scratch his eyelid.

He is still adorable.xo

And what was nice is that he wanted to snuggle with me which is so rare these days for my growing boy and so I am trying to hold on to these moments. I was supposed to go out tonight for a trainer's send-off with my CrossFit friends after I put the kids to bed. I was looking forward to a bit of social activity since it's been ages since I've been out but really, when I think of it, being at home with snuggly children is priceless.

Thursday, September 3, 2009

return to work

Ack. Just received an email from my Platoon Chief asking me to nail down the date for my return to work. I have officially just a little over 2 months before I go back. But I have some holidays to carry over so that will put me back around Christmas. I have been itching to go back forever and now that I'm getting close I am a bit nervous. I'll be rusty that's for sure but after a shift or two and a good housefire I'm sure the kinks will work themselves out. As strange as it sounds I miss the smell of axle grease and smoke.

Time to start thinking of weaning Maiya.... I know she's more than ready.... she ate half a steak yesterday. She's in the big leagues now.

kiss me baby

Maiya has learned how to kiss. And it is adorable. At bedtime she will crawl on top of me and plant a big sloppy wet kiss right on my lips. She'll crawl as fast as she can to catch her big brother to kiss him sending Jacob scurrying in all directions trying to escape.

There is nothing sweeter in this world than a baby's kiss. And what makes it even sweeter is that it's my baby's kiss. xo

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

sticks and stones

There is always one person at school or at work that is a bully. I have had my dealings with one or two jackasses at work but I'm a big girl and can handle it. Just a sad fact of life. But I was shocked when I met this 4 year old boy at my son's daycare. He is one of those children that just likes being mean and mouthy. And I want to give this boy a big hard pinch on his ear he is so horrid. The first time I saw him he came up to me and said "I am going to slit your throat". Thankfully the teacher was close by and promptly timed him out. Next day he said he was going to shoot my eyes out with lasers. Now, if he is saying this to me, an adult. I can only imagine what he is saying to the other children. Jacob came home with some pretty colourful language that he learned from E. My husband and I were not impressed of course and dealt with it. We do not let Jacob get away even with a mere inch of inappropriate behaviour. We tell him that boys who spit/hit/scream/lie have no friends. It struck me as odd when I saw E. at the daycare teasing mercilessly one of the children including Jacob, and E's mother was laughing along with her son. For the life of me I do not understand how some people are allowed to breed.

Forget pinching E. I wish I could just give his mother a slap.