Tag Archive | Canada

Joy in July

July is, of course, a month that starts out with a bang with Canada Day and July 4th. It is also my mother’s birthday and full on summer activity. We went to the Zoo, entered in the County Fair, and I even made a Dragon. July is always a busy month.

This July we had family come to visit. Nana and Baba drove up with the cousins. So there was lots to do with them. 

Beach trips.20170730_113832

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20170723_132541Baking and ice cream making.20170730_205050

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Visits to the park.20170727_121540

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It had been a while since all the kids were together. 20170728_215230

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We were invited to a birthday party at a park!IMG_20170716_185230_219

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Of course there was LOTS of time to get to know Neko-chan better. Seriously I am in love. And so you will be inundated with pictures of fluffy amazingness. I just wish you could feel her through the pictures. SO SOFT!!!20170726_085520

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We visited with Cousin Robbie. Still a family favourite. Echo even got to sit on his bike! He wears all the safety equipment in this helmet optional state.20170710_184225

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Of course we watched some soccer games.

Aidan

Aidan

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And walked to the YMCA … A LOT. Ken had a business trip in July and the YMCA being so close was a life saver.20170724_113302

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Emanuel and Echo even won a colouring contest

Emanuel and Echo even won a colouring contest

Trinity and Emanuel have continued in their Karate adventure. IMG_20170727_192510_458

We even saw some produce from our garden.IMG_20170711_125555_800

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Found a Canadian penny on a walk!!20170712_123407

Bought ice cream from a passing ice cream truck.. a first for all of us!20170711_145817

I found time for Tim Hortons… of course!20170722_134506

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Ken and I joined forces to create a lovely chalkboard in the front entry. He does an amazing job with ideas I come up with!20170709_163333

We even managed to squeak in school!IMG_20170718_103122_561

And did I mention I am obsessed with my chinchilla? Cuz…IMG_20170710_143514_920

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It was a great July!IMG_20170708_143810_491

I Worry…

And I wish I could categorize it as a super power. I have always been somewhat timid, it has just increased drastically since Ken openly acknowledged his severe depression had relapsed. 

I come from a family of people with anxiety… close family members who I won’t name since I did not ask their permission, some even officially diagnosed and medicated for it. I have had conversations about how it is “in the genes”… how we could be know for it, and how we manage to make it work for us. 

My worry solidifies in plans, in back up plans, in back ups to back up plans. I categorize and re categorize everything. This includes my own health. I am always trying to be proactive. Living in the US without Canada’s universal health care has had me in a position of careful self management for periods of time.

And I have succeeded in spades. Working out up to 6 times a week has me active, removing high fructose corn syrup has my stomach aches down to a minimum, I limit my contact use, attempt to get enough rest, walk all summer and spend my time productively. 

But I worry… I worry about the dental visit I will have to finally have after an undisclosed period of time and the fall out from that. I worry that if I drop the ball on any of the above things I will trickle down to a massive physical breakdown (even though I know one less work out a week or that extra can of pop isn’t a final nail in ANY coffin). 

But it goes beyond that… I worry about Ken. I mean… ALWAYS worry about Ken. Is he healthy, is he happy, does he feel in control of his mental health? Have I done enough to assist him in his work to remain healthy? Can I do more?

Of course I also have a healthy dose of “Mommy Guilt”…. that feeling like you will never do enough for your kids. I question my parenting skills, my homeschooling, my ability to provide and discipline and love all at the same time. Will they reflect back on their childhood and see that they were loved and I did my very best for them? 

Don’t get me started on my worries about where I live and the goings on on a grand scale. What a world we live in right know.

So, I worry. And I plan, maybe over plan a little… and I love and I live and I do my very best. 

My master plan is to find a way to make my worry work for me. If it is worthy of worry it is worthy of work. This month I added a 3rd workout class to my schedule (don’t worry I still don’t exceed 6 days a week, I rather changed an elliptical run with R.I.P.P.E.D which I love… I am not THAT crazy after all). I have to wait to face the music at the dentist so I upped my dental care regime to at least keep peace of mind that I am not creating a bigger mess. The kids – well I just do my best and change things up from time to time. December is a month to celebrate according to Zander… so we are! Who says education has to be boring and lack in colouring pages? Not me!!!

And now for the biggest worry of them all (and I admit it, my own worries take a back seat when it comes to Ken’s health, it can just become so all consuming that I am still learning to let him worry about him and me do me.)… KEN… My greatest love, my dearest companion AND my largest worry. 

What can I do? Well, nothing more than I already am, so how to cope? Conversation, crochet, chocolate (cuz what doesn’t get a wee bit better with some quality chocolate?) and awesome company every so often. Yup, online and in person, I am surrounded by some of the most amazing and supportive people who get my crazy. (Or at least pretend they do)

So yes, I am a worrier, I just have yet to let the worry consume me. So if you have a conversation with me that is very wordy and full of circular discussion (like a lot of these blog posts) just realize I am talking through my worry, my neurosis as Ken likes to say. I put my worries out there so they feel less huge, less soul crushing. If someone I trust can tell me it is a tiny worry, well, maybe I can believe it too?

Do you worry? I would love to hear how you cope. Or, if you need me to, listen to your worries so you can feel heard. We worriers need to stick together, if nothing else than so we can enjoy chocolate, crafting and conversation… some of the best “C” words out there! 20171204_170413

Happy Canada Day!

July 1st is our yearly opportunity to be very visible and very Canadian. This year was a little different… Emanuel was still away at the Scout Camp with his friend Aidan until the evening. So we did our usual photo shoot with a twist.20170701_094925

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There was a meet up with our homeschool friends for some swimming or club (kid’s choice) with Nate and Bella as well. 20170701_105006

We TRIED to head to the zoo but apparently it was the day to go. So instead we turned around and headed to our favourite beach. Since the weather was a little on the cool side and cloudy it wasn’t packed. We didn’t spend much time in the water but really enjoyed the sand.

With Maple the Leaf

With Maple the Leaf

20170701_13072020170701_13300120170701_13370520170701_131403After the beach it was home for showers and then off to collect our absent Canadian. On the way there we stopped at our 3rd Tim Hortons so far. This one is rather close to the Novak’s house. I actually meet what I assume is an owner of one of the franchise. After a lovely conversation about the new stores and my coming from Canada to Minnesota he comped us 40 Tim Bits!!! So I left that store with 80 Tim Bits, an Ice Cap and a wonderful experience.IMG_20170701_162643_194

Snoopy!

Snoopy!

After a visit with the family and delivery of their Canadian goodies it was off to McDonald’s (Echo’s request after the aborted trip to the zoo).20170701_185250

We rounded off our Canada Day with a table of Canadian sweets. Ken made traditional and mint Nanaimo Bars (we had to order the custard powder off Amazon), Maple Cookies sent by a friend, and Tim Bits. Not bad! Next year buttertarts?IMG_20170701_211904_989

We redid our group photos on the 2nd to get a full group shot.20170702_095901

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Not bad for a Canada Day that wasn’t able to be celebrated IN Canada.20170701_095149

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