Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Ontario and back again

The kids and I just got back from Ontario. We had a great time visiting everyone, hanging out, eating good food and all the fun stuff that comes with family. It was a fun trip. Find some highlights below! 

Today Zach turns 8. His request for dinner was Butter Chicken and Naan bread. I think we can handle that!

I'm doing well. Getting some hair. It's all sticky-uppy now but doesn't look too bad. I still wear a hat out, mostly cause it's so cold on my head without one. 

Keep praying for us. Sleep is still a struggle for the kids (and then for us of course) we're working on it but it's not easy when everyone is extra tired. 

And on a happy note, I'm writing this to the sound of saws and banging cause our bathrooms are getting redone. The tile is going up today and I love it. I can't wait to have a bath in our new deep soaker tub (although we're having a mini fight about who will bet to use it first!). 

Forgive my picture taking abilities. It's almost embarrassing how dim and weird-coloured they are. I should really take a class. Especially since our good friends are fabulous photographers and offer classes fairly regularly!

On our way. The kids did homework on the flight to Ontario but didn't crack a book after that!

Yeah for snow!
Enjoyed a morning at the Marilyn Denis show. We all got a free pasta cooker! My mom is beside me, my sister in the green and my Aunt Pam on the far side! This is the best picture too - could it be the lighting?
The boys getting ready for the big game. My brother has pictures from the game but I don't have them yet so I couldn't share.
Great Wolf Lodge water park was so awesome.
Ana got a mani-pedi for her special treat (since Zac got to go to a Maple Leafs game)
The amazing cakes decorated by Auntie Rochelle.
We got together to celebrate Zach's birthday on Saturday. 
The cake decorator!
Me and Grandpa. Look - I'm getting hair! It's short but it's there.

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Thoughts to Action

After my optimism of beginning a new year, my bold declaration of dreams, ideas and hope, and my deep-seated need to really Live this year, I find myself a bit stuck. How does that actually translate into action? The first 10 days of 2012 feel exactly like all the other days and it frustrates me a little bit.

Partly it's that I've come down with the first cold since I've had cancer (what? A cold? Now that my immune system is supposed to be back up in working order?) Not once during chemo did I get sick (outside of the actual "treatment" that is) but now I do. Weird.

But I think it's more then feeling under the weather for the past week. Partly it's that I'm not sure where to go from here. I want to keep moving forward, living well, with purpose, and now that cancer is slowly moving towards the rearview mirror I'm finding a lack of focus. I was talking to Sam about this today and he thought this year should have helped clear up priorities. And it has in the sense that I know what I don't want to spend my time doing but it hasn't really helped me know what I should do instead. And I'm also realizing that I still have to do all the regular stuff. Clean, laundry, figure out what to make for dinner every. darn. night. And that stuff isn't really life giving or fun it's just life. I'm glad to be doing it - but what else?

And then there is writing. After Zach was born I started writing a novel. A fantasy novel about lots of fantastical things. I started writing because I was so immersed in babies that I needed an outlet. Something that used they dying parts of my brain, something that wasn't about diapers, baby puke and incessant crying (I love you Zachy but you did all of those things!). I have over 500,000 words written in a myriad of documents on my hard drive. Some good, most mediocre but it forms a loose book with lots of holes. Do I go back to it? Crack it open, try again? Is this something that I want to spend my time doing. My post-cancer, you never know what's gonna happen time?

Sam thinks I should write about cancer. That's sort of what I've been doing here but I could expand, go back and relive it all. Maybe or maybe not yet.

In my deepest heart I believe that God gives us dreams. Dreams that we're scared to admit to others or even to ourselves. Something we just want to do so badly - yet saying it out loud is terrifying. But when we do it we feel right. At peace, content. Writing is sort of like that for me.

Upon reflection, that sounds an awful lot like an answer. At least to part of the question.

Now the hard part - translating thoughts to action.

Sunday, January 1, 2012

Yeah, it's 2012!

I have to say - I'm thankful 2011 is over. It was a pretty hard year for us and for many others in our family. I'm glad the back cover of 2011 is face up on my desk and the book for 2012 has been cracked open. The pages are all blank, clear, white, empty. For the most part we get to choose how it's filled up. And at the end of 2012 I hope there are a few themes that run through our book: hope, joy, health, contentment, close relationships with family and friends, along with a deeper understanding of who Jesus is and who we are together. {and I have other theme ideas too like decorating, writing, DIY projects, family trips, and on and on... :-)}

I'm not really one for resolutions (besides the proverbial lose 20lbs) and I don't have any for this year but I do have dreams and ideas and hope. These 3 things were very obviously lacking for me this year. In the thick of chemo treatment I wondered if I would ever have creative ideas or dreams, if I would ever feel passion or drive for anything again. All I wanted to do was lay on the couch, watch movies or tv and get the day over with. That fog is lifting, thank goodness, and I'm finding my mojo.

A few days ago I started to take down our Christmas stuff. The idea was just the tree, since it was totally dying, but everything else I'd leave up. Well I did the tree, took stock, realized I wasn't near tired enough to stop and plus there were needles everywhere - better keep going. Got Sam to take down the rubber maids and packed it all up, then cleaned the house! At about 4 I realized what I'd just done. I'd spent a whole day doing stuff, not laying on the couch, not my usual 2011 method of cleaning (vacuum one room, then lay down!), but how I used to be. I was excited to see the final result of a clean house (I know what your thinking - this excited about cleaning? But a clean house brings me as close to bliss as a good piece of chocolate).

At the end of that day I jokingly said to Sam, "I'm back!" And I really felt that. And I think my family feels that too which makes me super happy. So it may be obvious but today I feel optimistic. And that is exactly how I want to start this new book.