Archive for April, 2008

Nothing Certain

Wednesday, April 30th, 2008

Back and forth, back and forth, the question of whether we will build a new house this year just keeps swinging back and forth! We didn’t think we’d be able to afford it, but now based on my dad’s costs on his new house that he’s finishing up right now, we might be able to make it work! So we are in the final stages of getting our blueprints done up. Here’s “our house” from the front:
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Ahh, what a beauty. So once we have prints in hand, it’s time to start gathering estimates to see if this dream will become a reality sooner than later. It is in God’s hands and I am still totally content to stay where we are. If we do build, I’ll be happy too! I know we are not planning to live in this trailer forever. Knowing that, I’d really like to get going on our house so that we can start paying down the mortgage now and be done sooner! If you think of us, please pray that we’ll get this all figured out. I’ve watched Dad build many houses over the years but the learning curve of self-contracting is STEEP just the same.

Chalk Another One Up For Breastfeeding

Friday, April 18th, 2008

The scare on Bisphenol A has got me thankful once again for my decision to breastfeed our boys. It’s no surprise to me that plastics have the potential to contain harmful chemicals, but I know we don’t usually suspect it to be in something that our kids come into such close contact with. I suppose I have a faith that people are looking out for the well being of my children even if they aren’t looking out for me. Studies are now showing that BPA is a hormone disruptor and is found in some plastics containing the recycling number 7, apparently that includes a lot of baby bottles. What’s creepy to me is that the sippy cups I have in my house don’t even have a recycling logo on them, so I don’t know if they contain BPA or not. Of course I’m airing on the side of caution and giving them the boot. I found some sippy cups at Superstore that are made of polypropylene (number 5 recycling logo), which is apparently does not contain harmful chemicals and is safe. Hopefully they don’t discover something deadly in PP plastics next!

By the way, just because something is labeled with a seven doesn’t mean it contains BPA, but it might. Nalgene bottles do (so I’m reading). Plastics labeled with a seven are a mish-mash of different things that just don’t fit into any other category of plastic. You can read more about labeling here.

…and Chloe makes nine!

Wednesday, April 16th, 2008

I am sooooo excited to announce the arrival of my niece Chloe! She was born on Sunday evening to my sister, Jude and brother-in-law, Rob, in Vancouver. She is healthy and doing awesome. Her big sister Anna is VERY proud and I’m sure having lots of snuggle time if this picture is any indication :)
chloeanna.jpg
This precious little one was such an answer to prayer for my whole family, as well as many others whom I’m sure have been praying too. Jude and Rob have been through quite a few miscarriages over the past few years but still felt God leading them to try to have another baby and it is such a testament of God’s faithfulness that they finally have another babe to hold in their arms. I know she will grow up in an awesome home and I’m just so excited that she is finally here! My parents are now proud grandparents to NINE beautiful grandchildren, and there’s one more on the way in September!

What a NIGHTMARE!

Monday, April 14th, 2008

Monday mornings are special lately because I get to go to swimming lessons with Wyatt. He gets a lot of love, but since he’s the second baby to make an entry into this family I’m sure he doesn’t get as much attention as Markus did. So swimming lessons are a little slice of life dedicated to one-on-one time with little Wyatt. We had a ton of fun in the pool but when it came time to get ready to go the fun ended. I had Wyatt on the bench in the the change room. He was all dressed and ready to go, I just needed to change. He’s really sturdy sitting up already, so I kept an eye on him while I got dressed. In a split second I saw him leaning too far forward and in what seemed like slow motion he tipped forward off the bench and onto the floor. My heart SANK as I saw disaster unfolding and was unable to move fast enough. I scooped him up as he started wailing and tried my best to console him, meanwhile praying like crazy that no permanent damage had been done to his tiny little head. As his cry lessened I became more aware of the other moms in the room and was sure they were all thinking about what an awful mother I must be to allow something like this to happen. When he was finally calm enough to set down I quickly finished getting dressed and booked it out of there. I overheard two moms on my way out, saying,
“Poor little guy…”
“Yeah, but you know what? That could happen to anyone.”

Thank you for extending grace to me, mother who I don’t know. I hope the others felt the same way and that I can keep reminding myself of the fact that it was an accident and that I’m not the world’s worst mom.

it rained today….

Tuesday, April 8th, 2008

I can’t wait for some more rainy days!

Stopping to Smell the Roses

Monday, April 7th, 2008

Life’s greatest joys are often not found in a few big moments, but in the small, everyday moments. Things that could easily pass us by, but if we take time to recognize them, can fill our lives with so much more joy. Here are some of my little everyday things that light up my life.

Waking up next to my wonderful husband.
Baby kisses.
A steaming cup of tea in a big mug with a white inside, so I can see the beautiful colour of my tea.
Fairly traded dark chocolate.
Falling snow.
A heart to heart with my dog Tia. (A sweet memory to me now)
Baking apple pie, and of course eating it.
Watching the stars.
Freshly picked strawberries.
Decluttering.
Starbucks dates with Clay. (Not an everyday occurance, but sweet nontheless)
Watching “Whee-o of Dune” with Markus. (Read: Wheel of Fortune :)
Grocery shopping at Sobeys.
Walking in the rain.
Listening to Coldplay or U2.
A long, hot, uninterrupted bath. (Haha, definitely doesn’t happen everyday!)
Going for walks with Markus and Wyatt.
Dreaming about how I will decorate my dream house.
An overflowing bookcase.
Pens. Markers. Crayons.
A real letter or card in the mail.
Markus singing.
Wyatt’s delight in his big brother.

Alternate Reality Dwellers

Thursday, April 3rd, 2008

Spring is upon us and I’m itching for a few new things to wear. Thanks to The Tax Man (thank you Corner Gas for introducing us to the man himself) we have a little extra spending money right now so Clay gave me his blessing to go shopping. NICE! I really want to go to the Gap but shopping at Midtown with two little munchkins and no hubby around to help is a bit daunting so I thought I’d just go to Superstore with the boys today to check out the Joe clothes. Last season they looked pretty atrocious on the whole, but at first glance the spring clothes looked like there could be some cute finds hidden within.

I was wrong.

Capris? Just a weird fit, and I’ll give them the benefit of the doubt here since I’m short and things like this don’t usually fit me right.
Skirt? Uh….no. I wish I had pictures to show you but none of the things I tried on are on the Joe site.
Dress? No shape.
Shirt? In what universe is a floral printed flour sack flattering?

Perhaps in the alternate reality of “high fashion” and walking the catwalk these things are considered fashionable. To me they just look plain ridiculous. I’m actually glad I didn’t find anything I liked though, since the quality of the Joe clothes leaves something to be desired. What nice things I’ve gotten from there in the past always wear out WAY too quickly. I’m keeping my fingers crossed that I have better luck at the Gap.

I’ve Got Gas! (?)

Thursday, April 3rd, 2008

Yeah, really nice title right? Just a heads up for all you Saskatoon dwellers that after the gas prices got hiked up to 123.9 today I stopped in at Canadian Tire gas bar on 8th and their posted price was 121.9 but they were still selling regular gas for 118.9 at the pumps. The guy there told me that when the prices go up they raise their posted price but keep the price on the pumps low a little longer to give people a chance to fill up at the old price. Good to know! I know in the grand scheme of things it’s really only a difference of a couple of bucks but it feels like you’re getting a great deal :)

Learning To Be Content

Tuesday, April 1st, 2008

I don’t know if anyone else ever saw this commercial but I think of it every time I see people drowning in debt and hope I am never in the same situation. (For the record I’m not endorsing the advertising company, please don’t go get a home equity loan like they’re trying to tell you to do!).

I am learning to be content. I’m learning to appreciate what God has provided in my life instead of longing for the things He has not. In our society this is anything but easy. We are trained to believe that if we want it, we should have it.
A new car? You deserve it.
Those cute shoes? You need them now!
You owe it to yourself!
You’re worth it!
Why save for tomorrow what you can spend today!

Okay so I’ve never heard an advertising campaign use that last slogan but they might as well. Society makes us believe that debt is not only acceptable but necessary. How else are you going to get what you want? Can’t wait until payday? Get a cash advance on your paycheck! Credit card offers fly at you from every financial institution imaginable boasting low balance transfers and high credit limits. I haven’t worked for pay in over two years and I still get credit card and loan offers sent to me. One last week asked if I needed some extra cash and proceeded to offer me $15 000! Wow. Thanks but no thanks. If I don’t have money for something it makes logical sense that I shouldn’t be buying it. Doesn’t it take money to get stuff? And if I don’t have money, I shouldn’t be getting stuff. How can something so simple be so incomprehensible to most people? Why are there so many people in debt up to their eyeballs, barely able to pay their finance charges?

They only thing I can think of that is good debt is a mortgage on a house you can afford. A house is something most people won’t be able to pay cash for and is a good investment. We mortgaged our house in the city when we lived there and it was the most wise financial decision we could have made. It was good debt because we paid less for a mortgage payment than we could have for rent, and we made almost twice as much money as we paid for the house after only 3 years. With the sale of our house we had money left over after paying off our mortgage and buying our current home.

homesweethome.jpg

Isn’t it cute? ;) The truth is we bought this place because of its land value. We paid less than the lot is worth and hoped to build a new house here this spring and move the trailer off. After we moved I was thankful to have a roof over my head but definitely thought of this place as temporary. I wanted a new house come spring! Then a few months ago my thinking began to change. God has been teaching me so much about contentment and thankfulness. When we’re honest with ourselves, we realize we can’t afford to build a new house right now. And we definitely can’t afford to sell this place and buy something else! Our home may not (okay, IS not) the nicest on the block. But however humble it may be, it is ours. We owe nothing to anyone and I can’t even begin to tell you how good it feels to be debt free! We have money in savings for emergencies and a savings account for a future house. I’m sure that a mortgage will be in our future sometime or another, but right now we can’t afford it and I am happy to stay here in the home the Lord has provided for us and continue to save for our future home. This one is warm, cozy, surprisingly roomy, and has a bathroom we can actually turn around in! We live in a small town, which is exactly where we wanted to be when we started having kids. We have enough room for the four of us, and I’m sure could fit one or two more in here if need be ;) Whatever the Lord has in mind for us is ultimately better than anything we could dream up and I’m so thankful that He takes the time to reveal these things to us.