Friday, October 22, 2010

Sticking to my guns

I've grown very aware that I really dislike having to repeat myself. Not because the person honestly doesn't hear or understand me, but because they just aren't listening or even care to bother. Seriously; I mean, my blood pressure rises sometimes and I can feel it happening.

I am referring to my beautiful children. One in particular. She's eight, has a mouth of a 12 year old, can have the laziness of a teen (I suppose they're lazy as that's the biggest complaint I hear), and the maturity at times matching her 2 year old brother.

I can't pin all of the blame on her as I do realize I have performed as the overly pampering Latin type of mother all these years. Tending to her every need making sure she is happy and comfortable. For me it's a combination of my OCD on neatness, always being pressed for time and then my lack of self discipline. For that I mean, sticking to my guns.

We are having listening and comprehension issues, laziness, whining, crying, you name it. Could be a phase and I know I'm supposed to pick my battles, but being such a control freak I find it hard sometimes.

I knew things had to change when the other day, I overheard Bella speaking with Chris. I was in my bedroom getting ready but could hear their conversation in her room over Kristjan's baby monitor. We were getting ready to go out for breakfast and I asked her to please get dressed...several times.

When Chris asked her why she hadn't gotten dressed, she answered: "Well, mommy didn't lay out any clothes for me." The light bulb in my tiny little head popped...along with a blood vessel.

It was time for a change. A time for them to learn to earn, learn to listen and learn to take care of themselves. A time for me practice more self discipline.

Seems my kiddos absolutely love their television. Bella also loving her Wii and DS. If I was going to have to make the change, I would have to use these tools to get it done. I don't want my kids growing up feeling entitled to all for nothing because mommy did everything for them.

So tomorrow our household will be implementing the good old fashion chore chart! Here's where my sticking to my guns plays in. I have Chris on board of course.

On Bella's chart she has the choice of earning television / gaming time or cash.
I had to make the little man a chore chart too. His of course is easier, but I think with my help he can handle them. He needs to earn his television time too.

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Sneak peak

Just love taking pictures of this guy.
Sneak peak into Halloween! Bella found her perfect outfit for this year. She's going to be a go go dancer. I'll put on some cute makeup and some bling bling for the Halloween festivities. She loves her boots. The outfit really called for white ones, but I thought black would be better so that she can also wear them for school. I don't have the "wear one time only" kind of budget. Man...I want a pair of black boots!

I'm feeling better every day. I have no more pains anymore and was pleasantly surprised when I found I had lost 2 pant sizes! Woohoo! I had to get a new pair of pants for my 20 year reunion and for the first time in a very long time, I was able to say "I need a smaller size to try on please."

Food? Yes, I'll get some back on here. Promise.

Thursday, October 14, 2010

My budding artist

Bella loves art. She's always drawing and telling stories. I love her imagination.
A hungry seal thinking about dinner.

A caricature of her brother wearing a dinosaur top.

Mack the dog. She created a character called Mr. Putter and this is his dog. She has some of her drawings hanging at school and apparently has a few stories with these two characters.


After seeing the gastroenterologist I found out what my problem was. Acute Pancreatitis. Pancreatitis is usually caused from either gall stones or alcohol. I don't have any gall stones.

So I am to not have any of the drinky drinky for three months. Not a drop. During that time my pancreas should heal. After that time I am allowed that occasional glass or two of red wine with a nice meal on the weekend or that occasional beer or two on a Saturday night. The everyday glass of red wine or home brew is no more. I was told that lifestyle was now a thing of the past for me. My pancreas can no longer process such requests.

I now also know why I was so bloated and miserable. When the pancreas is ticked off and inflamed it doesn't process lactose very well.

I am six days without any funny stuff and I already feel better. The pains under my rib cage are gone and I almost feel normal again in the tum tum. Every day I feel better. I have to say that I'm not miserable or sad about the new rules. Being healthy so I can hang out here on this funny planet and with my family as long as I can is far more important than a pint or two of brew. It's been a vivid wake up call for my ass. That's an organ I have to have. I was blessed that it warned me to chill out. I better take care of it!

Now Chris has a designated driver for all of the holiday festivities this year. My 20 year high school reunion this weekend, Halloween parties, Thanksgiving and Christmas. My doctor told me that I may be one of the only people being told they CAN start drinking again on New Year's. Very moderately of course!

Monday, October 4, 2010

Taking in the new weather

Ah, it's nice to be able to hang outside without your undies becoming drenched and sticking, your makeup melting off and your white shirt becoming see through from all the raging heat. We are like a bunch of jail mates finally able to play in the court yard. Let this cooler weather hang on. Please!
My cute little man exploring.
Hey! Where are your shoes dad?
Thought this little guy was pretty. They are very cool looking.
This summer has been riddled with wasps. They are nesting everywhere. You knock down the nest, the next day they are back. We all have to be very careful because if there is a safe spot, they have built a nest. Here's one in the corner by the back door. Notice how all of them are looking right at me. Like they are saying "Bring it on!"

Hmm, we'll take care of you guys. Can't have you nesting everywhere while the kids romp around.


Our weather these past few days has finally become less humid and cooler. It's such a delight after a summer of insane heat. I love what little fall we get and I definitely love the cooler weather. We may not be able to swim anymore, but I love the clean crisp air, opening the windows at home and being able to bundle up.

We decided to take a little road trip this Saturday with the kids. First we stopped by the Vegfest downtown. There were natural food and craft vendors, music, food, artists, animal adoptions and lots of animals running around.
Bella got her first face painting done. The artist was surprised when Bella asked for black and white, but then seem inspired as she added glittered frosting on the eye brows, in her hair and gave her some bright pink lips to finish. A pretty view of the University across the way from the festival.

After the festival we drove around a bit and did some exploring. We visited a friend's garden shop where they have a lot of exotic plants then went by Whole Foods. I love Whole Foods. It's not near the house at all and since we were so close, we had to stop by and pick up those items we love and just can't get anywhere else.

Their red quinoa, their awesome chicken, feta and spinach sausage, French lentils, aged Parmesan and their rocket. The rocket I get at the grocery store doesn't have the robust flavor as the organic. I absolutely love it.

After a lovely day out we came home and fired up the grill. The kids played outside while we grilled up some zuchinni, oranges, red bell peppers and those kick ass sausages. I tossed my rocket with some orange juice, salt, pepper and a little olive oil and covered the plates, then topped with grilled goodies and some Parmesan. Yummo with a glass of red wine.

A little cooking

I really didn't make anything new and wondrous in September really. I had a medical issue come up mid month which resulted in me having to live off of broth for a while. I'm still taking it easy. I was making food for the crew and soup for myself. A lot of chicken salad, sandwiches and pasta for them.

I had a morning where for almost 4 hours straight I experienced great pain in my right side below my rib cage which also hurt in my back. I attempted to see my doctor but instead went to the ER. Of course, by the time I make it to the hospital, my pain had mostly subsided. After blood testing and ultrasounds they found nothing wrong with my gall bladder, but did find I had acute pancreatitis. Not dangerously high, but above normal on the "normal scale."

I was instructed to omit the booze, any soda, any spices and just hang with broth for a while to rest my system. After seeing my main doctor, more blood tests and more ultrasounds, I still have my little pancreas enzyme issue, but all organs look fine. I am now scheduled to visit a gastroenterologist this Friday for further checking.

I was allowed to slowly get back to my normal diet (within reason) and I was allowed a little wine here and there. I've since been a bit gun shy for another "attack" and have cut my portions way down and even still just have a little broth for meals every now and then.

It's been scary. Only good part is I've lost some weight! One of my favorites. Roasted cauliflower. I should have let them cook a bit more. I love the charred bits.
To accompany my sweet cauliflower I made a very flavorful dish from Martha's site called Cinnamon-Spiced Moroccan Chicken. Very easy and very tasty.

What happened to September?

I have to say, that was a stretch! A whole month without a post. I am so sorry to have been absent for so long. I could go on and on with the excuses, but you've heard them all already. You know, work, work, work, busy at home and this time I was ill and constantly at the doctor's office. I'll spare you the details.
Something more important happened in September. My beloved Bella's 8th birthday! Grandpa and Grandma came down for a few days to celebrate. Bella received wonderful presents (still working on those thank you cards) some yummy cup cakes and got to go to Sea World the next day.