Thursday, January 31, 2008

heads up stressballs


So apparently the top three things that prematurely age your skin are:
1. Stress
2. Smoking
3. Sun exposure

Well the second two things are a given, but the first? Wow. That's motivation to take more hot baths and relax!

Wednesday, January 30, 2008

2 things

I had heard it would happen and now it finally has. During my pregnancy I barely lost any hair and now it is coming out in chunks. It's disgusting and it's driving me crazy. Poor Noah always seems to have my hair on him or in his clenched little fist.
I hope it stops falling out soon or I feel like I'm going to end up bald!
On an entirely different note:
I am watching the recap of last season's LOST and I cried. Charlie was probably my favourite character. I can't wait for this season to start again.

Tuesday, January 29, 2008

Easy eats

Whether you're a new mom, a poor student or just short on time, here's a meal you may like that's easy and cheap!
I fried up 3 italian sausages (I always take them out of the casing because I find the casing gross and hard to cut) and then added a can of diced tomatoes and 1 1/2 cups of water and a few shakes of basil.
Once that boiled I added a box of macaroni and some extra pasta I had in a box. Let that simmer for 6 minutes and then I added 2 cups of baby spinach. Stirred it all together and then added the cheese mix plus a couple handfuls of grated old cheddar cheese.
DELISH!
It was yummy and...pretty healthy I think. :)

This dish was modified from this recipe.

Sunday, January 27, 2008

reads

Reading update:

I've read a whole whack load of Jodi Picoult books. They are all somewhat the same in that there's law and a court involved and usually young people getting in trouble. Currently I've just started "My Sister's Keeper" which I've heard RAVE reviews about so we'll see if I like it anymore than her others.
I also did read "A thousand splendid suns" and I've made my decision. I won't be reading any more of Khaled Housseini's books. They ARE well written but the stories he writes about are just too tragic and ... hard I guess. I don't generally read books to get depressed but his books just make me too sad. I realize that there are people out there who have these hard, tragic lives...but honestly, I don't really want to read about them. Does that make me a horrible person? Maybe I just don't want to think about the reality that others live in, day in and day out. I don't know...but that's my position.
As for The Birth House, I couldn't get past the 2nd chapter so I put that one down and returned it.
I got my last book on hold; "This is your brain on music" and that will be a vastly different read than the other novels I've been reading.
C'est tout.

Mr. Peepers


This is Mr. Peepers. He was given to Noah from our friend Shelly. I like Mr. Peepers a lot - he's so cute and definitely trendy. I hope he's one of Noah's favourite little toys.

Saturday, January 19, 2008

shopping

I think I have a new addiction; online shopping.
This site doesn't help my addiction AT ALL.
I love it.
It picks out the best of the best of everything (practically) and then links you to the site where you can browse through all their other lovely things.
Just check it out.
Do it now.

lifestyles of the rich and famous

For real? Check this out!

Sunday, January 13, 2008

transition zones

After talking with a friend today I remembered a "poem" I had read and copied down into my journal during my time in New Zealand.
When I got home tonight I went looking for my journals and it was interesting to read my thoughts and experiences from such a formative period in my life. Sometimes I was a bit embarrassed by my thoughts, feelings, and actions during that time and sometimes I was amazed at what God taught me and how I grew during this time.
I did find the "poem". It's not really a poem at all but prose (I think). I thought I would type it out because I still really like it - 6 years later.
Fear of Transformation
Sometimes I feel my life is a series of trapeze swings. I'm either hanging onto a trapeze bar swinging along, or for a few moments, I'm hurtling across space in between bars.
Most of the time I'm hanging on for dear life to my trapeze bar of the moment. It carries me along at a certain steady rate of swing and I have the feeling that I'm in control of my life. I know most of the right questions and even some of the right answers. But once in a while as I'm merrily swinging along, I look ahead of me into the distance and I see another bar swinging towards me. It's empty and I know, in that place in me that knows, that this new trapeze bar has my name on it. It is my next step, my growth, my aliveness coming to get me. In my heart of hearts I know that for me to grow, I must release my grip on the present, well-known bar to move on to the new one.
Each time it happens, I hope and pray I won't have to grab the new trapeze bar. But in my knowing place I realize that I must totally release my grasp on my old bar and for some time I must hurtle across space before I can grab onto the new bar. Each time I am filled with terror. It doesn't matter that in all my previous hurtles across the void of unknowing I have always made it. Each time I am afraid I will miss, that I will be crushed on unseen rocks in the bottomless chasm between the bars. But I do it anyway. Perhaps this is the essence of what the mystics call the faith experience. No guarantees. No net. No insurance policy. But you do it anyway, because somehow to keep hanging on to that old bar is no longer an alternative. And so for an eternity that can last a microsecond or a thousand lifetimes, I soar across the dark void of "the past is gone, the future is not yet here".
It's called transition. I have come to believe that transition is the only place that real change occurs. I have noticed that in our culture this transition zone is looked upon as a nothing, a no place between places. Surely the old trapeze bar was real and that new one coming towards me, I hope that's real too. But the void in between? That's just a scary, confusing, disorienting "nowhere" that must be gotten through as fast as possible. What a waste! I have a sneaking suspicion that the transition zone is the only real thing, and that the bars are illusions we dream up to avoid the void where the real change, the real growth occurs for us. Whether or not my hunch is true, it remains that the transition zones in our lives are the incredibly rich places. They should be honoured even savoured. Even with all the pain and fear and feelings of being out of control that can accompany transitions, they are still the most alive, most growth-filled, most passionate, most expansive moments in our lives.
And so, transformation of fear may have nothing to do with making fear go away, but rather with giving ourselves permission to "hang out" in the transition between trapeze bars. Transforming our need to grab that new bar, any bar, is allowing ourselves to dwell in the only place where change really happens. It can be terrifying. It can also be enlightening, in the true sense of the word.
Hurtling through the void, we just may learn how to fly.

Wednesday, January 9, 2008

blog recommendation

I've found a funny blog that I quite enjoy reading. If you don't mind a few cuss words here and there check out Local Girl for a comic-style blog.

books

I'm excited. Jamie went out and I got him to drop by the library to pick up some books that were on hold for me.

3 books.
1. The Birth House by Ami McKay
2. The Pact by Jodi Picoult
3. Nineteen Minutes by Jodi Picoult

I have 6 other books still on hold for me. I'm STILL waiting for A Thousand Splendid Suns. It was all ready and waiting for me at the library but apparently they shipped it back out before I had a chance to get in and pick it up. I'm annoyed because now I have to get back in the queue (that is a really weird word to spell, by the way) to wait for it. I'm #16.

I love a good novel. But my problem is that if I really get into it then that's pretty much ALL I DO until I finish the book. It's a bit consuming sometimes.

On another reading note, I have taken up the challenge to read the Bible in a year. Okay so I'm a bit late starting but I've read Day 1 and will have to double up a few times this month to catch up. I think I need this structure to be able to get into the Word on a regular basis. Otherwise I'm like a fish out of water - flopping around, aimless and gasping for air. Yep. That's me alright.

Friday, January 4, 2008

yumm-o


There's just something about my Decaf Tall Non-fat Latte from Starbucks. It tastes so good and I don't even need the extra "fat" in my latte.
I just love it. Mmm...I want one right now.

photomentary

Today I wanted to document my day with photography but it didn't last long. I got too busy and things got a bit hairy with Noah so it all ended shortly after noon.
I will try this again some other time.

Thursday, January 3, 2008

reads

Update on books I've read:

Haroun and the Sea of Stories was a delightful book to read. Full of made up words and places it was like Dr. Seuss for grown ups.
I don't know how she does it was good but a little sad to read - I also thought it was a memoir until I got about half way through and realized the main character's name was different than the author's. Oops. An eye opener to how having kids changes your priorities (and rightly so).
The Girlfriend's Guide to surviving the first year of motherhood was honest, witty and sarcastic. Funny too. There were many paragraphs or one-liners that I wanted to type out and post on this blog but then they got to be too many and I got too lazy.
I have another book to pick up at the library but I'm not sure which one. Maybe I'll get there tomorrow.

4

4 generations of Stricklands

ideas for entries

I have two ideas for blog entries that I'd like to do in the next week or so;
1. A day in the life of a new Mom; complete with thoughts and ponderings as well as a loose version of a time log.
2. My day in pictures; where I just document my day with my camera. I might try and do that tomorrow.
If only I could get the quality of a digital SLR with a little Point And Shooter. Speaking of which I can't find my little Olympus camera for the life of me. It disappeared after we moved.
Hmmm....

Tuesday, January 1, 2008

growing up

I'm back from Toronto. Back from Christmas festivities. Back from Winter Conference. Back from living NOT at home for the past week and a half.
It feels nice to be back.
This Christmas was different. It wasn't really fun but it was good. I think I've always looked forward to Christmas because you get to be a kid again but now celebrating Christmas with a kid is a little bit more work and effort. Like I had to be a responsible adult or something weird like that.
Winter Conference was extremely different. The first day and a half I wanted to NOT be there. Stuck in a hotel room. With a cranky 2 month old. Not fun.
But after Noah got settled and started napping again and we were in one location for more than 24 hours a bit of normality settled into our lives again. I was able to enjoy some sessions, even walk through the Eaton Centre with Noah in the Baby Bjorn and even go out to dinner a few times with friends!
I did, however, spend New Years (the last 30 minutes of 2007) in my hotel room, in bed, by myself, watching the countdown on tv.
It was okay because Noah was sleeping and I was tired anyway. I had prepared myself to be in the hotel room anyway. While it was still a bit disappointing and I almost had teary eyes as I left Jen's hotel room with a very tired little boy (who wouldn't fall asleep amidst adult conversation and a bit of laughter), in the end ... it's okay.
I'm glad that I truly can say that it's okay that that's where I spent New Years. I don't want to be bitter and being a parent continues to stretch and challenge my self-centeredness so I'm trying to embrace that and look at the good things - for instance that Noah was sleeping and not screaming. That's a VERY good thing. :)
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