This Changes Things

Cpl. Nathan Cirillo - picture taken shortly before the tragic events of today unfolded. Thank you to Guillaume Hache for sharing this with us.

Cpl. Nathan Cirillo – picture taken shortly before the tragic events of today unfolded. Thank you to Guillaume Hache for sharing this with us.

Today, October 22, is a day that Canada will never forget.

History was changed and made.

A man lost his life as he stood proudly in his uniform. It was a senseless act of terror such that our country has never experienced before.

Today a country was changed.

Much will be written about today, about this man, about what this means for us as a nation. Many tears will be, and already have been, shed as a reaction to what happened today. People are mourning the loss of life and the loss of a nation’s innocence.

Today changed me as a mom.

My son recently joined Air Cadets and I’ll admit that I was viewing it as a great opportunity for him to meet other kids, to learn new skills, to learn some discipline that comes from a source other than me! The implications for the future beyond the potential for him to get his pilots’ license hadn’t really occurred to me. Until today.

Today I realized that one day my son may choose a career in a branch of our military. At 13 he stands almost as tall as myself – maybe an inch

My Son.

My Son

shorter. He can rest his chin on my shoulder when he hugs me. He is starting to look like the man he will grow up to be. And I realized that some day I could lose him simply because of his uniform. I was moved to hug him and as I did, the tears flowed as I grieved the events of the day and said goodbye, in my heart, to the little boy who has grown up.

Today my country was changed. A family was changed. This mother was changed. Will we ever be the same? No. Our country will always mourn the loss of our innocence and sense of security. A family will always mourn the loss of their father, son, friend. I will always miss the little boy who has grown into a man in front of my eyes and wonder at the speed of time.

Today has changed everything. It has changed how we see the world around us. It has changed how we see ourselves. It changes how I see my son. And now the hard work begins – working to make sure that those changes move us towards good, to make sure that we don’t lose ourselves, to make sure we don’t allow the enemy to win, to make sure that I don’t hold on too tightly allowing fear to win.

Thank you to the men and women who responded in this crisis. Thank you to those who put themselves in harm’s way to protect our nation. Thank you to Nathan Cirillo for your service. And thank you to my son who is teaching me to be a better mom simply by being himself.

“God keep our land, glorious and free…Oh Canada we stand on guard for thee.”

canada

 

 

Passions

We all have them. Things that get us excited and make the blood flow just a little faster through our veins. They can be many things or a simple few. They may be long term or they may be just for a time. Here are a few of mine both current and past:

Babywearing

This is both a lifestyle choice and a passion for me at this point in time. It may or may not be fleeting, based solely on circumstance and stage in life. Whatever the case may be, I love it!! I cannot imagine our life without babywearing. There are so many aspects to it that make it something that gets me excited – the closeness it provides between mom and baby/toddler, the convenience of being able to do things with both hands while keeping child close at hand, the beauty of the carriers and wraps that have developed as a result of others’ passion for the same. This is something that, if you ask me about it, I could go on for hours about! But I won’t. At least not in this post!

Babywearing Demo - September 2014

Babywearing Demo – September 2014

Breastfeeding

Yup. I said it! I am passionate about breastfeeding. Liam and I are going on 22 months of it so I better be passionate about it or I just like to be held captive by a young human for long periods of time each day! This isn’t something that I expect will be a fleeting passion although my hands’ on involvement will obviously not be forever! The day will come when Liam is no longer nursing but my passion and enthusiasm for it will not wane just because he’s no longer interested. It will just look different.

Photo credit: Peggy Knaak, Sunbeams and Freckles Photography, Kamloops, BC 2014

Photo credit: Peggy Knaak, Sunbeams and Freckles Photography, Kamloops, BC 2014

Shoes. Boots. Footwear.

I LOVE LOVE LOVE shoes!! And BOOTS!! And I am seriously considering getting a part time job outside of the house to help fund my love of both shoes and wraps (for babywearing). My tastes, as I am getting older and more experienced, are refining which really means they are getting more expensive. I won’t be buying cheap shoes or boots ever again even if that means I own fewer. I would give up my 6 pairs of pretty awesome boots for 1 pair of AMAZING Fluevogs in a heartbeat if I could. Don’t know what Fluevogs are? Check them out here: Fluevog Shoes.

Books

I LOVE books! I love everything about books! I love that a person can open the pages of new book and enter a world that is not their own. I love the feel of them, the smell of them, the sound of them. The soft swishing of a page turning is a sound like no other. Some of my best times have been spent alone in a book store wandering the aisles discovering new gems. Those times have only been overshadowed by the fact that I cannot afford to bring all the books home with me and I must therefore choose. It is almost like asking a mother to pick her favorite child. Impossible. I love all kinds of books – almost all kinds of fiction (no fantasy, sci-fi or vampire books for me) and many types of non-fiction. My favorite gifts as a child were books and to this day, one of my favorite gifts is a gift card to Amazon or Chapters with a large goodly balance on it with which to buy a few new friends to add to my collections. I read my books over and over and over. They never get old.

Babies

I LOVE BABIES!! Since I was a little girl I have loved babies. Pretty sure I will always love them. The wonder of them, the potential of them, the unwritten stories that they represent….LOVE THEM!!!

Grandson Jasper & I just a few days ago (he was 2 days old)

Grandson Jasper & I just a few days ago (he was 2 days old)

Creative Arts

Music. Sewing. Papercrafting. Writing. I love these things because they feed my soul. They are outlets of expression. They are feeders of my heart. They allow me to both give and receive in ways that my soul requires to remain healthy and whole. But they are also the source of much angst and anguish for me as I am a perfectionist who is learning to let go of some of that when appropriate. Better to be creating imperfectly than to not create at all.

A cool bag I created to haul my stuff that I can use while babywearing (passions coming together!)

A cool bag I created to haul my stuff that I can use while babywearing (passions coming together!)

People

I am passionate about people. I want to help them, to see them live whole and fulfilling lives. I want to see broken people fixed, hurting people soothed, wounded people healed. I want to know them, to understand what makes them tick and to use that knowledge to help them be better people, to help ME be a better person. People have long fascinated and frustrated me. The psychology of people fascinates me. This is one passion that I am not quite sure how it is going to manifest itself in my life as time goes on but it is one that I want to see grow and develop. I see glimpses of how it may play out as I muddle my way through each day but I fear it may be a long time before a clear picture of this develops in my life. It does lead to overload and burn out at times as does my passion for the creative. Something I am working on because the people in my life should not suffer because of the creative in my life nor should the creative in my life suffer because of the people in my life.

Some of the people I love to know!

Some of the people I love to know!

These are just a few of the things that I am passionate about. Some very specific. Some with room to develop and grow more specifically. Some are deep. Others more shallow or less philosophical. But all get me excited and cause me to want to go on and on about them! 🙂 I can’t do that right now though…the day calls as does another passion – COFFEE!!!

Catching Up

Phew! I can’t believe it is October! WHERE HAS THE TIME GONE?!! No, seriously! Where has it gone? Wasn’t it just the beginning of summer and the start of school was months away?? How is it possible that we are three weeks into school, that the leaves are turning color, that the summer clothes are slowly finding their way into the back of the closet??

I can’t believe everything that has been happening around here. Mostly good. Some tough stuff. Some not so good. But life continues on….and it’s time for me to get you caught up on what we’ve been up to.

July was a month without big kids – they were away at their grandparents’ in Ontario and then off to summer camp for a week. I have to say, this was the best summer camp week ever! They went together for the first time ever (someone please remind me why I thought it was a good idea to send them separate weeks all these years!!) and came home with mutual stories to tell and memories made. I need to remind them of those days – they were actually FRIENDS for a few days, maybe even a couple of weeks, after that week as they reminisced about those glorious 5 days at camp!

August found us dealing with major changes – job changes for the husband, relationship changes for a few family members, a family wedding, a residence change for a family member and beautiful weather. It wasn’t an easy month, but it wasn’t a bad month. It just was life. We enjoyed ourselves at times, we shed tears at other times. I think it’s safe to say that we experienced emotions in all their vastness and the many ups and downs that it can take you on. No sooner were we adjusting to one change when another would come along. I actually felt like a pingpong ball being tossed from one end of the table to the other with no chance to regain my equilibrium in between.

September came along and before we knew it this whole adventure we decided to embark on was starting. EEK! We’re actually doing this homeschooling thing!! Now I gotta be honest with you. I had high hopes for this “GRAND ADVENTURE”! HIGH hopes. But I was realistic – I knew it was going to be a transition. But let me tell ya! I had no idea just how much of a transition it was going to be for all of us. WHOOEEE!!! It is only by the grace of God that I have not eaten my young this month and thank GOD they have had the grace and maturity to realize that their mother is simply on a crazy train and that there is no need to run away, that the train will arrive at the station sometime soon and all will go back to normal.

FOR THE LOVE OF ALL THAT IS HOLY DO NOT START SUCH AN ADVENTURE AS WE HAVE WHEN YOU ARE PMS’ING!!!!

That’s all I have to say about THAT!!! 😛

Okay, no. In all seriousness, it’s been a tough go but it’s not been a bad one. I wouldn’t change our decision to home school based on the last 3 weeks. We’ve had some pretty unsuccessful days if you measure success by amount of work completed. But if you measure it by how many children lived to see another day? We’re ACE-ING this one!! 😀 Or at least I am! HA! It has been a much greater transition than I anticipated though. And it continues to be a transition as we learn to work together and around each other. Let me tell you, when you can’t even get alone to pee without someone (usually a toddler) walking in on you or pounding on the door because you’ve, for some crazy reason, locked it, well, you tend to go a little bit nutso. Or a lot. Yea. A lot might be more appropriate! Ah but things are slowly coming together and we WILL get through this too!

In other areas, we’ve all started new activities – I am heading up the childcare for the Wednesday morning group at our church and the kids are helping with the childcare (totally convenient, I know!). Isaac is going to Air Cadets and is growing through that. Emily is taking a bit of a break after several years of being very busy with choirs etc. Tim is working at a new job and we’re all enjoying the more normal hours. Liam is, well, he’s being adorable…usually. Teething is happening. And OH MY WORD!!!!!!!! I had no idea this child could be so, well, HORRID!!! I love him and it’s a darn good thing because HOLY COW he’s been CRANKY!!! Yes I am using CAPITALS – it’s really been THAT bad!!! He’s cutting his 2 year molars and they are not being kind to him therefore he’s being unkind to us. This will pass but in the meantime it makes for some long long days!! Poor little guy.

I’ve been working hard on my Stampin’ Up! business again and seeing some good results from that. It’s been fun to create projects that customers love and to see their eyes light up when they realize that they are capable of creating beautiful things that others will appreciate. Of course the admin in me loves the planning and stuff for the in home workshops, the classes and the fairs coming up. Now I just need to find the time to get all the projects completed that I really want to!!

And there you have it. A brief “here’s what’s been going on” for us. There’s other stuff going on, things behind the scenes or inside my heart & the hearts of my family members that I haven’t mentioned here. I’ll be sharing some of those things over the next little while. There are activities and changes coming up that are both exciting and scary. There are potentially new roles that will be taken on and new ideas explored. It’s all very exciting to think about how we as a family are going to grow both in numbers and in our own hearts and minds over the next few months. I’ll share as much of the journey with everyone as I can….I just hope there’s time enough to tell all the stories!

God continues to be very good to our family. I am so very thankful.

A few shots from the last couple of weeks…..

2014-09-11 11.33.40

Horseback Riding with my Girl

Book shopping with Mom - Start them young!!

Book shopping with Mom – Start them young!!

Family dinner out - Big boy didn't need a booster seat!

Family dinner out – Big boy didn’t need a booster seat!

Babywearing Demo - September 2014

Babywearing Demo – September 2014