I slept in a little bit this morning since Eli seems happy to flop around in his crib in the mornings until I come and get him. Thank you Eli, it’s much appreciated.
After making him a bottle and setting him on the floor I made myself a delicious pumpkin spice latte (see http://www.afarmgirlsdabbles.com for the recipe). Rhys and Amelia are off watching cartoons, the sun is shining, I’m wearing a cozy knit sweater…all is well. I love this time of year.
The kids are enjoying school a lot. We attended the annual back-to-school BBQ this past week where we are able to see their classrooms and meet their teachers.
Amelia has made new friends (which isn’t a surprise at all). She excitedly pulled me around her new Grade 1 room and showed me where her backpack, jacket and lunch kit go. She showed us where she sits and where her folders are placed. We saw the reading corner and the whiteboard. She was beaming with pride the entire time. The initial report from her teacher is that she’s a very eager child who seems to be taking learning very seriously. Good. Amelia is happily settled.
Down the hall to Rhys’ room. Waaaaay down the hall. He’s so far away from the Kindergarten rooms! How’d he grow up this quickly!?
He sits right at the front of the room and decorated his desks name tag with a big city construction scene. He also showed us where all of his stuff belongs and…low and behold…he’d forgotten his lunchbox that day! Typical. We met his teacher whose a younger guy and, thus far, he seems like a perfect fit and Rhys is so pumped to have his first male teacher. It turns out that Rhys is in the Grade 3/4 split class which I was unaware of (James said that it stated that on the report card last year but I have baby brain so…). Rhys will be able to work on some Grade 4 level math and reading, among other things, which he and I are quite excited about. I’m looking forward to seeing how this year goes for him in this classroom. He’s also made a new friend who is from France! James and I were able to meet his parents who live close by. They said they’ve already heard a lot about Rhys and I think our boys have quickly bonded over soccer.
We are settling in to a routine quite nicely. The kids are keeping up with their chores and I’m slowly finding a rhythm to my days with just Eli at home. It makes me happy to see all of my kids learning and enjoying themselves.
The kids were both gone all day on Friday. Ammie went for her first ever field trip to Boonstra Farms. She milked a cow and fed it to the kittens. I’ve seen her with kittens before…I felt sorry for them.
They got home and were promptly whisked away by my mother-in-law for a weekend at the cottage.
My friend and I went on a little road trip out to Gimli yesterday. It was beautiful and perfect. We listened to Bon Iver most of the way.
Baby has been kicking and rolling around quite a bit. I’ve been looking into baby-wearing and decided on a style of wrap that I will be able to make myself. I’m starting to get excited to meet this little one.
The weather here has been dark and drizzly for most of the weekend. I’m currently spending some time with Karla Adolphe’s melancholy album ‘Honeycomb Tombs’. The thunder is clapping overhead and my plants are getting watered.
James is sleeping off a night shift full of drunks.
All is well.
I took the kids to one of those parking-lot fairs over the weekend. I didn’t tell them where we were going until we pulled-up and they could see all the rides. They kept asking if we were really going there, as if I was playing some sick joke on them. I guess James and I had been so broke for the past few years that we never really did anything uber fun and totally frivolous with the kids…or if we did then it was pretty few and far between or paid for by someone else. But things are turning around and we are able to treat our kids to a little bit more these days. Ammie was pretty much vibrating with excitement the whole time. A fair is a silly place to spend a pile of cash. You fork over an arm and a leg and get a handful or rides in return, rides that only last a few moments and they you’re done. But when you see your kids faces pass for the 10th time as they loop around on a little dragon roller-coaster and they still have the goofiest smile going, and they run up to you yelling, “THAT WAS AWESOME!!” and then they talk about it for hours afterwards, it makes it all worth-while. Actually, it makes everything worth-while.
Skills was one of my favorite things about summer camp. The opportunity to try new and unusual sports or activities was always exciting to me (still is). Starting in Jr.High my siblings and I were shipped-off to Camp Cedarwood for one week out of our summer. It was there that I learnt how to Kayak and since that time it’s always held a special place in my heart. I walk through MEC and longingly gaze at the beautiful vessels sitting there just asking to be guided through the rippling waves.
My brother is now the director of that camp and this past Saturday I had the chance to take one of the kayaks out onto the water. I went by myself (racing my brother out and around and back to the beach) and then took Rhys for a little spin. I was only out for a few minutes but it was long enough for my little water-loving heart to yet again attach itself to this sport. Oh, if only I were 18 again I would sign myself up for camp staff and spend my whole summer out on the water. Sigh. Maybe I’ll join the Winnipeg Rowing Club in a few years…
I’m closer to 30 than I am to 20…it’s true. This has become more and more apparent to me this past year as I’ve journeyed to the age of 27. Things like my ever-growing preference for buying jeans from Reitman’s with word’s such as ‘comfort’ and ‘classic’ in the description of cut rather than ‘skinny’ and ‘extra-low’ and ‘young-supple-body’ have made it obvious that I’m growing-up. I now enjoy healthy helpings of fried onions, goat cheese, wine and various tasty cereals that are high in fiber instead of Slurpee’s (haven’t had one this summer) and Lucky Charms. Gone are the days of late nights without bags under my eyes….gone are the days of late nights in general. You know you’re growing-up when you not only say that you’d like to go to bed at 9:00 but you do go to bed at 9:00. I’ve found that I can no longer have coffee in the evenings without feeling the effects at 2:00 in the morning in which I’ll inevitably then stay awake thinking of all the bills that need to get paid and appointments that need to get made. I now have a preference for button-up shirts that will hide my little roll of extra skin, a reminder of both bundles that I’ve carried around, instead of logo t-shirts that let everyone walking past know that I’ve got an opinion about something or someone or that I’d rather be a vampire. My eyes have already started the ‘I can’t believe kids these days’ roll, more evidence of the drift from the desirable early twenties when you’re no longer on the receiving end of these. Heck, I’ve even started buying Christmas gifts mid-summer! I must be growing-up!
I’m not sure if most of the things are due to the fact that I’m growing-up or that my kids are growing-up. While it’s probably a combination of the two, part of my slow realization that I’m now more woman than girl has been brought about by Rhys starting school. I ran into a friend a little while ago that was saying she had a hard time believing that ‘we’ are old enough to have kids in school (she doesn’t have any kids). It’s true, I’m not the norm these days (in the circles that I run with at least). I even look around at the people who I graduated with and just now are most of them getting married and having their first child. James and I will be celebrating our 6 year anniversary soon…just after our son becomes a student. I might be alone in the ’27 with school-aged children’ category and yes, there are days where I feel quite young to be dealing with a 5-year-old, but I have to confess that I feel a certain sense of relief to see myself growing-up. I’m happy to be leaving the self-conscious, self-focused twenty-year-old ‘the world is my oyster’ mindset behind and opening-up to a more mature understanding of myself, my job and my life…granted this is a continual and ongoing process. I find that I am becoming more and more satisfied with tilling the little plot of land God has provided us with (figuratively and literally) and falling asleep halfway through the paragraph in a good book. As I’ve inched my way closer to 30 I’ve begun to feel my heart blossom and I’ve witnessed this slow opening of my hands to what He would have me do.
I’ve heard it said that when you are in your twenties you discover all of the little bits and pieces about yourself, when you are in your thirties you are figuring out how they all fit together, and when you are in your forties you behold the puzzle and live it. I’ve never been thirty or forty so I can’t really say if this is accurate or not but I have very much felt that my twenties have been all about tromping through the jungles of my heart. There have been months, years even, where I’ve journeyed through the dark and lonely and dangerous places but I’ve also experienced the opposite; beautiful and wondrous to behold and discover. It could be that I’m nearing the end (or at least this leg) of this great expedition and am coming out on the other side with a deeper understanding of who I am. I still don’t know how everything fits together but I’m finally starting to feel comfortable in my own skin. I’m starting to appreciate different things about myself…like them even. I’m starting to acknowledge that I am good at certain things and that there are other things that I am not good at, and that’s okay.
No, I might not be able to party until 2 in the morning wearing a hot pink tube dress throwing back drinks with names that sound more like romance novels than something you should be consuming but I’m 100% okay with that. 100%. I’d much rather be baking in my kitchen or sewing at the table or curled-up on the couch reading an Amelia Bedelia book to my children.
I’m growing up and I’m okay with it. I love that I can sit with my husband and think back through our years together and feel like there is a history there. My children love asking questions and hearing about us. Being young or appearing young is such a desirable thing these days but I think it’s a bit overrated. Sure I’m slightly jealous of the fact that 16-year-old’s don’t have to watch what they eat for fear of a sudden onset of IBS but hey, now I’ve got some funny stories…..right?
One of James close friends got me hooked on Arcade Fire, a husband and wife indie rock group from Montreal. I can’t get enough of them. They’ve got a different sort of sound, using obscure instruments that you normally don’t find in today’s music; glockenspiel, French horn…ripping pages of a magazine for percussion. Very interesting stuff. Have a listen.