Friday, April 30, 2010

A Dark + Rainy Friday Night

My week came in like a lion and went out like a lion. RAWR.

Today was a whirlwind of meetings and office time and groceries and deadlines, then my parents came for dinner and Geoff went to work and Briony went to bed.

Now it's 8 pm and the house is quiet. I'm trying not to stress about yet another round of Big Work Related Decisions. In fact, I'm trying not to think about anything work related at all. And I'm DEFINITELY trying not to freak out about the fact that this flare-up is going on a full week now.

Instead, I'm preparing to enjoy a ginormous bowl of popcorn, hot chocolate with marshmallows, various flavours of red Starburst candies, and whatever is currently saved on my PVR.

I can think of worse ways to spend a dark and rainy Friday night.

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Friday Smile

I was surprised this week with an early Mother's Day present... The cutest little new Beehouse teapot and the matching sugar and creamer. SO ADORABLE. Good job, Geoff!

It is such an English Breakfast kind of rainy afternoon, and everything tastes better when it comes from a nice teapot :)

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Thursday, April 29, 2010

Briony's First Fortune

So I have yet to master the art of working a full day AND managing to cook dinner for my family. Today, the result of a long day at the office was - BAD BAD BAD - ordering Chinese (don't worry, I quickly heated up something else for Briony).

Geoff + Briony went to go pick it up and our little charmer apparently charmed the heck out of whoever was working at our local Chinese restaurant, because Briony came home with her very first fortune cookie. She was not allowed it eat it because I'm not a fun mom, but the fortune we found inside made me smile: Your home is a pleasant place from which you will draw happiness.

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Just Putting It Out There...

One of my clients is in the market for a full-time receptionist. If you're interested (or know someone who might be), you can message me for details.


Wednesday, April 28, 2010

A Quick Smile List

I am NOT having a great day. Geoff was working last night and I was up for hours with a teething baby. I feel horrible because it is so not like her... I can count on my fingers how many times I've been up with her during the night for more than a minute or two, and last night was a little bit weird - so I know she must have been seriously uncomfortable, and I tried all the tricks in the book but they didn't help her very much.

We ended up having some good giggly mother/daughter time on the couch together but I prefer my quality time during daylight hours :)

And so today is a TIRED day. Today is a PAIN day. Today is a LONG day.

I think this calls for a smile list.

Today, I choose to smile because...

1. Our Lilith Fair tickets came in the mail this week. AWESOMENESS.

2. My bathtub is sparkly clean, and I am sooo taking advantage of that tonight. I have some Lime Margarita bath salts from Tiber River screaming my name.

3. We are now just three weeks + two days away from Geoff having an entire month off. HUGE SIGH OF RELIEF.

4. I got my course pack in the mail today for my FINAL COURSE that starts on May 10. This means that by the end of July, I'll be eligible to graduate. I'm loving the light at the end of this tunnel.

5. Geoff brought me a latte from Starbucks this morning. That is always a good start to the day!

6. I was able to pick up the new 'Master Your Metabolism' cookbook by Jillian Michaels yesterday, and I'm totally nerdy-excited to try out some of the recipes. YUMMY.

7. I had a wonderful evening catching up with Anja yesterday, taking Briony to the park and then drinking tea together. There's something incredibly special about friends you've known and loved for a long time. I'm so grateful to have her in my life.

8. My parents get home tonight from their trip out to see Aaron + Cait. They were only gone for a couple of days, but I hadn't spent time with them for a while before they left, so it feels like it's been a long time...

9. I have a massage booked for later this afternoon. That fixes *almost* everything :)

10. We found someone to help us with our estate planning. She seems super nice and we've set up a meeting with her for next week. It feels awesome to cross such important things off our list.

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So as fabulous as my day was today, my brother's tomorrow is about to be about a million times cooler as he boards a plane to LA for the premiere of his animation work... My kid brother's doing okay for his first eight months in Vancouver. Check it out.

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Tuesday, April 27, 2010


I think that working from Starbucks is pretty much the greatest thing ever. The only thing that could possibly top this would be if Katie was playing with Briony and Josy was cleaning my house right now...

OH WAIT. That's totally happening.

This must be what heaven is like. Actually... This must be what HAVING A WIFE is like :D

In any case, it *almost* makes up for my ridiculously stressful week full of teething and night shifts and fibro flare-ups and deadlines and client drama and...

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Monday, April 26, 2010

Monday Secret

This secret would have made me smile all on its own... But the story that goes with it makes it even better. Check it out at the PostSecret website.


Walking on Sunshine

I used to hesitate to talk about money on this blog. I still don't believe in sharing anything that's too personal - especially about my marriage and family - but I can't help but feel that I'm doing people a dis-service by not talking about it at all. We don't talk about money as much as we should. I think we all have things we can learn and things we can teach. And I honestly hope that by talking about it just a little bit, I'll be able to accomplish both (because we sure as heck don't have it all figured out yet).

But despite being students of family finance, we are seriously on a roll here... First Briony's RESP. Then setting things in motion to complete our estate planning. And now making some changes to my personal loan that are going to make things SO MUCH BETTER.

I came into our marriage with a dumb personal loan. It was (and still is) our only debt, with the obvious exception of our mortgage - which I put into a different category anyway, as do most financial experts. I used to hate myself for that, but the cold hard facts are that Geoff is almost eight years older than I am and had more years to get his shit together. My single loan (pun unintended but hilarious anyway) isn't huge but included the remnants of a car loan, a handful of student loans, and - most significantly - all the medical bills that weren't covered by insurance when I was having a series of surgeries during my university and 'early career building' years.

By the way, can you believe that I made $20k - GROSS! - a year working 40+ hours a week as an agency copywriter back in the day?! It's all paying off now, but STILL. That's just WRONG. And it seriously explains the loan.

So back to The Loan. It's the thorn in my flesh. And more than anything, it represents BLACKNESS to me. It represents the hardest years of my life - and the sickest, both physically and psychologically. It feels oppressive and I don't want it in my life anymore. In a perfect world, it was supposed to be gone before I got married (which didn't happen). And it was DEFINITELY supposed to be gone before we had a baby (which OBVIOUSLY didn't happen). But now it REALLY needs to go.

I've been diligently making payments on it, even through my mat leave and getting my business started and all that fun stuff. But I am thoroughly sick of it. I know that the things it paid for - my education and career, our family car, my HEALTH - are all things that benefit my family today and that it's not as selfish as it feels. But I still want for it to be gone. And so Geoff and I sat down this week and did some math. One quick phone call to my credit union allowed me to transfer over the money I didn't owe in 2009 taxes as a principal-only payment, and at the same time I also added on 'bonus' little principal-only payments that will come out on the same day as my current bi-weekly payments. The result? My loan will be paid off in less than ten months. LESS THAN TEN MONTHS. By the time the snow melts at the end of next winter, my family will be debt-free (again, the mortgage doesn't count).

It feels good. It feels dancing around the house good. It feels even better that we'll accomplish this while still making contributions to Briony's RESP and putting money away into savings + planned spending accounts (even people trying to be debt-free need vacations, hehe).

Now let's back up for a second...

We read an article last year about how your 20s and 30s are 'debt accumulating' years and then your 40s and 50s are 'debt repayment' years. It really encouraged the reader to think about your 20s and 30s as years when you're acquiring assets and paying for a lot of 'extras' - going to university, buying a house, getting married, having kids, etc. - and to not sweat it because you have some good decades coming when you can clean it all up before retirement. The article succeeded in making us feel better for a minute. But there's a fundamental flaw in any plan that makes you feel like it's totally okay to just buy whatever you can 'afford' on credit with the attitude that you can just pay for it 'later'...

We're pretty big Gail fans here, and her approach is essentially the opposite. Plan like a pessimist so you can live like an optimist. Figure out what you can afford and only spend that. Save for the things you want. Live with the goal of being debt-free (mortgage doesn't count). Once your bases are covered, spend the excess on whatever the heck you want to.

I think that Geoff + I have developed an approach that respects both opinions. We love Gail's approach, but we also realize that we did a lot of things very, very quickly (and not necessarily by design). Doing the wedding + the house + the baby + the new self-employment thing all in the space of two years is full-on CRAZY - and we'd be the first to admit that. And life doesn't always work 100% ideally. Because of that same truth, we both hesitate to defer all our happiness and fun 'until we can afford it' because that tomorrow is not always guaranteed and I can't imagine anything sadder than looking back on your life and wishing you'd lived it differently. But BALANCE is the key. And we've made some big decisions - like keeping a very affordable mortgage - so that we have that flexibility in other areas.

So YAY for being debt-free. But we already know that our victory will probably be short-lived. It would be awesome to put money away for the next five or six years so that we can pay cash for a new car. But there's not a chance in hell that my car is going to last that long. And while we definitely do make use of public transportation + walk whenever we can, we simply need to have a car. So we know that we'll be taking out a loan for that at some point. And it sucks, and Gail would agree that it sucks, but we're not going to beat ourselves up over it. We'll just make sure that - whatever our solution is - we can afford it.

This time around, it might not be debt-free FOREVER. But if the mere possibility of it happening in the next year (however temporarily) feels this good, then I know we'll do it again - and come closer and closer to maintaining that as our standard. And maybe we don't have to do it PERFECTLY yet. After all, we're still in our 20s and 30s :)


Now it's your turn... I'd love to hear about your financial victories, or goals that you've set for yourself. What systems and philosophies have worked for you?

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Sunday, April 25, 2010

Toddlers + Teething + Deadlines... OH MY

I should just KNOW that on days when I use up my reserve spoons, I'll find myself needing them before long.

After (over)exerting myself this morning, I've been dealing with a TODDLER here all afternoon. Briony's been rubbing her eyes since 11 am and she just now - finally - HOPEFULLY - is down for her first nap of the day. It's 100% teething, which makes it so hard because it's *so* not her fault. I fear for bedtime and what this late nap might mean, but I'm very willing to risk it right now.

It's just one of those Sunday afternoons when I really wish that I had a husband who is always around on weekends. Or at least one who leaves and comes home at normal times so that a 'work day' doesn't overlap ALL of Briony's day. Fighting with a teething toddler over naps while having a silent mental breakdown over all the client work I was supposed to be doing during her nap has exhausted me today... And I know that I'm on my own for bedtime still. I'm trying not to think about that part yet.

I think I can. I think I can. I think I can.

And even if today gets the better of me, we're less than four weeks away from Geoff having an entire month off - the grand payoff for these dastardly 12 hour shifts :)

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The MS Walk (with a little help from my friends)

For the past couple of years, my good friend Mel has organized a team for the MS Walk in honour of her mother-in-law. I have always wanted to go and support them but it never seems to work out. We're always busy that day or gone for the weekend or SOMETHING. This year, the calendar was wide open - other than Geoff working all weekend - and so I signed up to participate with Briony.

It was pretty much as hard as I thought it would be. I'm sure there are moms who would scoff at the idea that going and doing a 3k walk that starts and finishes less than five minutes from your house could be 'difficult'... But it was a big deal for me. EVERYTHING is a big deal with you live with chronic disease + a toddler. Getting through one day at home alone with Briony always leaves me crying happy tears on the couch at the end of the day because it's such a massive accomplishment. And so I knew that this would be big.

So we woke up, had breakfast, and got ready to go. We got there without any drama at all, Briony giggling and chattering away in the backseat, and I even managed to swing through the Starbucks drive-through. We met up with the rest of Team Irma and Briony did great until about half a kilometre from the end of the walk. Her late bedtime the night before was catching up with her big time. Between my friends Kathy and Emily and I, we carried her the short distance to the end.

The entire team went for brunch after the walk and Kathy came with me to help get Briony and the stroller and all our assorted baby gear into the car (and then back out again a few blocks later). Briony didn't do great at brunch - it was SERIOUSLY nap time - but she managed to pretty much hold it together until we were finishing up.

The whole morning, I was struck by the enormity of our village. Not our literal village, of course, but the incredible people in our lives who will just step up and help without even thinking about it. While we were all there for Irma, it was good for my soul too. Some of us walk very difficult paths, but we are never walking alone. Irma saw that demonstrated physically today as we all walked together to support MS. But I saw it demonstrated in a thousand tiny and practical ways today. It makes me realize that I can absolutely do this - but not on my own. And I think that's how it should be.

As a special bonus, at one point this morning I realized that I was walking with the three girls who are coming to Lilith Fair with me this summer. It's going to be an awesome weekend, and I can hardly wait :)

Briony + Mr Whiskers at the MS Walk, hiding from paparazzi.

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Friday, April 23, 2010

Welcome Back, Jennifer Knapp

I'm a Christian and I love music, but I'm not a lover of Christian music. There are exceptions, of course, but I pick my favourite music based on whether or not I like it, whether or not I connect with it - and whether it's a 'Christian' artist or not makes absolutely no difference to me. That's just how it is (and I despise those labels anyway). And my library of music includes a little of both.

Around the time I was finishing high school and starting university, a new singer-songwriter came onto the Christian music scene and I was immediately drawn to her music - probably because it was just plain good music. I loved everything about Jennifer Knapp's music, and she pumped out three CDs in just a couple of years and toured like mad. I saw her live at least two or three times during those years. And then, in 2002, she was gone. She just totally disappeared from music.

And I still listen to her old CDs.

So imagine my delight to hear that she's touring as part of Lilith Fair this summer (not at our location... BOO) and releasing a new CD next month after a seven year hiatus.

In all her media interviews for the new album, she's been completely honest and transparent as always - and is for the first time openly talking about the fact that she's in a longterm same sex relationship. I read her 'coming out' article (here and here and here) today and was *so* impressed with how she's articulated her experiences in a dual role as a Christian and a lesbian. I was not impressed that it was the entire focus of the story, glossing over the far more interesting (in my opinion) questions about her hiatus and her new album. It makes me sad that this has turned into another 'sensational' story for the media... She appeared on Larry King Live tonight as part of an episode about whether Christianity and homosexuality can co-exist. And I just watched a pastor call her 'perverted' to her face on CNN. And then compared her to a pedophile. Shudder.

My point is not to begin a debate on Christians and homosexuality. I don't want to get into it, and you honestly won't change what I believe about it anyway. My point is that I can't wait for her new album to come out in a couple of weeks.

Welcome back, Jennifer Knapp. I wish your reception was a little bit friendlier. Now I hope we'll all surprise you by purchasing so many copies of your new album that we'll make it your best-selling album ever. I might buy two :)

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End of an Era

We sold our baby swing and exersaucer today. What a strange feeling. On one hand, it's exciting to have them out of my house (and hopefully some other no-longer-used items will follow over the next few days). On the other hand, it's kind of the end of an era for the Wright family.

I'm not sad about it exactly... More like pensive or nostalgic, I guess. I absolutely loved having baby Briony in our family. And now I love toddler Briony every bit as much. Actually, truth be told, I think I love toddler Briony even more. And I will keep loving every new stage that our family grows into and through and out of again. They're all kind their own kind of magical, don't you think? :)

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One Moment With Briony

We just caught Briony talking in her sleep about shoes.

First, I think it's hilarious that she talks in her sleep. She's been doing it for a while and it makes me giggle every time because it's just so funny to me that she's so small and yet TALKING in her sleep.

Second, this shoe obsession is just getting stranger and stranger. This week, I put the wrong shoes on her THREE TIMES. I know because each time, she said 'no' and then tried taking them off and showing me which ones she wanted me to put on her instead (always the silver ones with the big flower on the toes). And we've been hearing 'I love shoes!' around this house almost as much as we hear 'I love cheese!' - and she seriously loves her cheese.

Would it be strange to set up a savings account for baby shoe purchases? :)

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Being a Grown-Up... SIGH

Over the past couple of months, Geoff + I have been doing our best to take all of Gail's advice to heart. We weren't really messed up to begin with, but just sucking it up and tackling those few financial areas that needed a little bit of spring cleaning feels good. REALLY good. Good enough that I seriously recommend this book to any of you who have been eyeing it up in the bookstore - and probably even more so for those of you who have no idea who or what I'm talking about :)

So you know that one corner of your house that's particularly cobwebby and you avoid like the plague because you just KNOW that it's not going to be fun to do? Yeah. That's totally our estate planning. But as Gail loves to say, 'It's the grown-up thing to do, so grow up and do it.'

Which brings me to the purpose of this post...

Have any of you in the Winnipeg area had a great experience with a lawyer who could help us?

When you went through the process, what was your biggest surprise?

What advice would you give about key questions that Geoff + I should be discussing ahead of time?

And just for fun (and because I can't even remember the last time I did an anonymous blog poll)...

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Friday Smile(s)

1. Geoff, Briony + I celebrated Earth Day yesterday by taking a completely unnecessary roadtrip to the US to shop. I'm mostly over the guilt. And the tiny bit that remains is being drowned in sugar and red food dye. Because the geniuses over at Starburst have FINALLY realized that the red ones are the only good ones, and they're started selling bags of ONLY RED FLAVOURS of Starburst. I was like a kid in... well... a candy store. And my clients should all be warned that everything I produce in the next 72 hours is likely to be extra-sugary.

2. Geoff and I can't stop laughing at this video...

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Looking Ahead

I'm sitting here trying to organize our lives a little bit. I'm behind on updating the calendar, meal planning, and all kinds of fabulous wife and mommy things. As I update, I'm realizing that I have some seriously awesome things coming up...
- The MS Walk this Sunday
- A birthday party... or three (that I know of so far)
- Another massage... or two ;)
- Another Mac workshop to make me more awesome at work
- Our first 'Young Adults with Arthritis' meetup
- My first attempt at cardmaking with a bunch of other moms (okay, this might not be 'seriously awesome' but I'm attempting to make mommy friends and this is apparently something that mommies do?!)
- A spa + yoga weekend at Hotel Fort Garry with my best friend
- Another trip to BC to spend time with family and friends

This is all happening in the next month. And I still need to add in some playdates and coffee dates and other little things before we leave. Oh, and I'm sure that Geoff is planning something super-fabulous for Mother's Day. HAHA.

This is shaping up to be an incredibly busy couple of weeks... And Geoff is working through most of it. Hope we're up for it! YIKES.


Wednesday, April 21, 2010


Sometime during this past week, Briony figured out 'I love...' and it's been a veritable lovefest around here since then. Some more frequently heard declarations include 'I love eee eee (monkey)!' 'I love Foofa!' 'I love cheese!' and 'I love swings!'

It's important to note that these exclamations are SHOUTED. And often randomly. And she looks at us as if she's letting us in on some big secret, not understanding that we are absolutely aware of EVERYTHING that Briony loves in this world.

Around the same time, she also started with the hug attacks. That's what we're calling them, because I'm not really sure how else to describe what happens. Briony just randomly stops what she's doing and comes at us yelling 'HUG! HUG!' and then flings herself at us as forcefully as she can muster. Immediately on impact, she'll go limp and just nuzzle into your neck (sometimes whispering 'hug! hug!') and stay there for as long as she needs to. And then she gets up and continues with her playing as if nothing happened.

The hug attacks have us on our toes because the surprise sneaky ninja hugs could end very badly if we don't catch her when she goes limp. In any case, it's hilarious - and one of my favourite Briony things so far.

That and watching her yell 'I looooove swiiiiiiings!' as she giggles from up in the clouds.

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Monday, April 19, 2010

Love and Other Disasters (or How to Stay Married to a Chronic Babe)

This post was prepared for inclusion in the Chronic Babe Blog Carnival... Which I was totally late for. Not sure if it will be *officially* included, but thought it was worth sharing anyway since I wrote it! This week's theme is 'Love, Illness and Other Confusing Things.'

Learn more at


Some people begin a relationship with their eyes half-closed, coasting along and basking in the perfection of love and life.

We are not one of those couples.

When Geoff married me, he knew exactly what he was getting himself into. Okay, maybe not EVERYTHING... I still think he was caught a little off guard by the intensity of my love for bad 90s power ballads. But he knew that I was sick - and when he married me, he married me + my disease. For better or for worse.

I wish I was one of those wives who could do it all perfectly. I really, truly mean that with every ounce of Type A personality in my being (and that's a lot... trust me). I long to be the wife that I feel my husband deserves.

But I'm not that girl. I'm a girl with arthritis and fibromyalgia and chronic fatigue. I hate it, but that's who I am. I'm a girl who often finds herself so exhausted at the end of the day that I fall asleep on the couch. I'm a girl who can't always follow through on what I said I would do, because flares can be so unpredictable. I'm a girl who gets really excited about walking to the park, but then panics once I get there because I realize that I'm too tired and in too much pain to walk home.

And I'm not going to lie. It's a stress in our relationship. I often think that - without my disability - we would never fight at all. It's not that we don't love each other, or that we're not trying. It's that we speak different languages sometimes. My husband speaks the language of healthy, 'normal' people. And I speak the language of chronic illness. Neither is right, and neither is wrong. But there are days when we desperately need the services of a translator.

And so, I present to you my guide to being married (and - let's face it - STAYING married) to a chronic babe:

1. Check in often.
Don't be an ass about it, but be sure to ask how she's doing - even on days when it appears that things are going well. It lets her know that you care and that you're aware, and it eliminates all the guessing games. It's sometimes very difficult to judge how she's doing just by looking at her - chronic babes are actresses out of necessity and have honed their craft over years and years of practice. She might not always volunteer information about how she's feeling because she's scared of sounding like a whiner. And she might be 'faking healthy' in front of other people just to avoid awkward conversations with people she's not comfortable discussing her personal health challenges with. By asking, you significantly reduce your risk of saying something truly stupid or expecting too much of her. It allows you to function as a team. And teamwork is key to a chronic marriage.

2. Develop a disease vocabulary.
I find it incredibly difficult to verbalize every symptom I'm experiencing or how each one is making me feel on any given day. My husband is a nurse, so he's used to asking patients about their pain relative to a ten-point scale. I have developed my own ten-point scale of yuckiness. For me, the scale encompasses pain, fatigue, depression, and all my symptoms rolled up into one. When he asks me how I'm feeling, I don't always need to launch into a big detailed explanation - I can just say '8' and he knows that I'm having a tough day, or '3' and he knows that I'm doing okay. There are probably an infinite number of different ways to 'measure' or communicate the current status of your disease, and I encourage you to find one that works for you - or maybe even one that makes you laugh.

3. Let her make bad choices.
NEWS FLASH. Life with a chronic illness is not exactly a picnic. It's full of doctor's appointments and new meds and balancing diet and exercise and worrying about more things than you can probably imagine. Sometimes, your chronic babe will choose to use her energy to do something just purely for FUN. Sometimes, that fun thing might cost her a lot and land her in bed for a couple of days after. That's her prerogative, and the last thing she needs is for you to point out that she might be taking a step backwards my participating. Trust me, she is intimately aware of the consequences of the decision she's making. But sometimes living life takes precedence over chronic illness - and sometimes it should.

4. Make a plan.
Take advantage of a good day to talk about how to handle the bad ones that are sure to come. Find out what stresses her out most when she's sick, and figure out if that's something you could help with on her bad days. Find out what makes her feel better, so you're not just standing around wondering what to do when the next disaster strikes. She's not always going to be able to communicate these things (or communicate them NICELY) on her sickest days. But she'll be forever grateful for a husband who knows to clean up the kitchen while she's soaking the worst parts of her pain away in a bath. And making a plan helps you step inside her world just a couple of minutes. Living well with a chronic illness means that EVERYTHING is calculated. I don't get up from the couch and walk upstairs to pee without first planning to make that trip as efficient as possible. Before I move a finger, I've already figured out exactly how I'm going to get up, what I'm going to take with me that needs to go upstairs anyway, what I can bring downstairs again to save myself another trip, what else I can do while I'm already standing... It would literally blow your mind to spend two minutes inside mine. Planning is the key to success.

5. Become an expert.
I think I can confidently speak on behalf of all chronic babes and say that we don't want you to think 'sick' every time you look at us. But taking the time to learn about our disease(s) communicates to us that you care. And being knowledgeable enough that we can talk to you about what happened at our latest doctor's appointment is a strange but surefire way to say 'I love you' to a sick chick. It doesn't mean that it's all you need to talk about - in fact, that would be TERRIBLE - but it means that the quality of those conversations will skyrocket. And that leaves more time and energy to just be married - which is the ultimate goal after all. I desire normalcy in all its forms and believe it or not, talking about my disease - instead of turning it into the elephant in the room that is never acknowledged - helps make it more normal for me.


I'm dedicating this post to Geoff, for knowing what you were getting into and choosing to love me anyway. I love you for so many reasons, but maybe most of all for making the decision to join me on this adventure. And to Briony, my baby girl who didn't have a choice but is growing up with a chronic mommy. It's not always going to be easy, but there's a heck of a lot of love in this family and it will get us through. I promise.

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Sunday, April 18, 2010

Spring Cleaning

My house is over-run with baby stuff. It's all good, but I can't stand to look at the stuff we're not actively using any more... So to make a long story short, I'm too lazy to do a garage sale so I'm planning to post a crapload of stuff on Kijiji this week. If you're looking for baby stuff, let me know!

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Saturday, April 17, 2010

One Moment With Briony

Briony often asks about people she likes who aren't around. When Geoff is at work, it's 'where's dada?' - ALL DAY LONG, which I suppose is probably kind of sweet. When we're both around, it's often 'where's baba?' (my mom).

Today, Geoff + Briony + I were out for a walk and she looked at us from her stroller and asked 'where's other dada?'


Memo to Self: Don't cheat on Geoff. And if I do cheat on Geoff, definitely don't count on Briony to keep the secret ;)

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Still Thinking

I read a book this week that's been on my nightstand for months and months while I've been busy with life and work and everything else. And that's a shame because it was the best book I've read in a long, long time.

Yeah, that's right. I said it. It was THAT GOOD.

If you haven't already, go pick up a copy of Still Alice. It's stunning and beautiful and you're going to think about it for the rest of your life in a way that makes you a better person.

Still Alice is the story of a fifty-year-old Harvard professor who finds herself dealing with a diagnosis of early-onset Alzheimer's. What makes the book very special is that it's written from the Alzheimer victim's perspective, and it's written by a first-time author whose day job as a neuroscientist allows her to tell Alice's story with a depth of understanding and compassion that kind of blew my mind. It made me cry so many times... For Alice and her family. For people like Alice and their families. For the parallels I saw between Alice and my father-in-law. For the parallels I saw between Alice and my mom. And just because I'm a giant suck.

You can read more about the book here.

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My Baby Will Be Edumacated

Today was a big day in Briony's life. She doesn't realize that, of course. But isn't that always the case? :)

Geoff and I finally managed to get all our ducks in a row and visited our financial institution today to set up her RESP. I can't even tell you how happy it made me - both to finally be doing it, and to know that we're taking steps to help make sure that she'll be successful. Because I've told Geoff in no uncertain terms that no matter what happens to me, our baby girl is going to get post-secondary education. I don't care what she studies, but she's going to do it. It's something that is critically important and absolutely non-negotiable as far as I'm concerned. Fortunately, Geoff agrees.

Anyway. It's done. And you know what the very best part was? I made her first lump-sum contribution. Me. LINDSAY MARIE WRIGHT. It might not sound like much, but my job in this family is to take care of things like groceries and clean, fashionable clothing - not to make significant financial contributions.

I was almost in tears when we got back to the car because I was just full up to my eyeballs with a foreign emotion that I can only guess might be called SELF ESTEEM.

I did something good, something that will help our family financially - and I was able to do that because of all the work I've been balancing these past few months. All those sleepless nights and high levels of stress are actually physically worth something. They are worth Briony's education. And I can't think of any better reason in the world to be working.

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Friday, April 16, 2010

One More Friday Smile

...and then I'm done. Seriously. But this is IMPORTANT.

God (aka the Associated Press) announced that they are officially changing the spelling of 'Web site' to 'website.' This might not sound like a big deal, but I've been fighting clients over this one forever and ever. I have lost YEARS off my life. Well, minutes FOR SURE. The two-word usage - with a capital letter of all things! - is ugly and stupid. The one-word usage is obviously better. But there are always those stick-in-the-mud clients who just always need to follow the rules, and this rule causes me to break out into hives.

I don't know why 'because I'm the writer and I said so' wasn't good enough... But now I have the AP to back me up.

Just let me say this one time and then I'll be done: I TOLD YOU SO.

Ah. There. That DOES feel better :)

Now I'm going to go start my weekend early, JUST BECAUSE I CAN. I have a napping baby girl, banana bread in the oven, water boiling for tea, and an amazing book that's beckoning me to return... And no deadlines until Monday afternoon :)


Another Friday Smile

Kerri at Six Until Me - a fabulous blog about living well with diabetes - and her husband welcomed a baby girl into the world yesterday morning. I saw the news on Twitter this morning and I bawled, well, like a baby. Her health challenges are different than mine and so was her road to welcoming her baby girl, but I could so totally relate to the excitement, the fear, the anticipation, the worry, and the thousand emotions attached to being a chronic babe doing the mommy thing... And I can't wait for her to experience all the joy of being a mommy to a beautiful baby girl. SO EXCITING. It just goes to show that a chronic illness will only take away as much of your life as you allow it to.

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Friday Smile

WARNING: This is totally a book nerd Friday Smile.

One of my most favouritest books ever is being turned into a movie next year. Casting details started to leak over the last month - and while I don't think they're all *perfect* I am very happy. Now to wait an entire year to watch it (all the while holding my breath that nothing gets wrecked).

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Wednesday, April 14, 2010

A Funny Thing Happened On My Way To The Top

Tonight was an appreciation event for the caregivers who look after our little ones at the moms group that Briony and I have been attending (I've actually volunteered to be on the committee for next year, which probably tells you how well it's been going for us). I ended up having a work-related conversation with another mom there, and it has me reflecting on my work week so far.

Yesterday, I had a client decide to remove me from a project. It wasn't personal at all - pure business and money. And I'll admit that my first reaction was hurt slash anger and frustration. I think it was just habit... Ten years of clawing and scratching your way through your career can apparently turn you into one of those abused animals who keeps attacking out of habit even though you've long been rescued.

Was that too dramatic? Ah, well. Allow me to explain, and then we'll return to the story.

There are certain industries where your progress is somewhat orderly. Not so in advertising. Less so in small agencies. I received very few promotions and made very few advancements that weren't entirely self-driven. As in, I would schedule a meeting with my boss, tell them all the ways that I was awesome and helping to make them rich and successful, and then present a proposal for a new job that I'd invented for myself. And they would give it to me, and I'd work like a crazy person to stun them with my ability and determination and put the next step of my grand master plan into action. Because I was going places, dammit.

And then a funny thing happened.

Her name is Briony. And giving up my life of full-time agency work to spend more time with her was one of the easier decisions I've ever made.

If I'm really honest about it (and why not be honest - it's MY blog and you're here choosing to read it), I'm not very surprised that my freelance business has been successful. I've been fighting for my own career for a decade. Now, I'm just doing it for ME instead of for other people. But while the game is essentially the same on paper, it's entirely different now in reality because my priorities are so different. I still care about my career - A LOT - and you can take the girl away from the office but you sure as heck can't de-program her tendency towards workaholism... But from now until forever, everything is less important than my family.

And so, my hurt slash anger and frustration melted away as I realized that this news left today almost entirely open for Mommy + Briony time while Geoff was at a professional development conference. And because my house was cleaned yesterday, I really had nothing even remotely as important to do as spending time with Briony.

And so we giggled. We coloured. We played. We sang. We danced. We practiced walking. We talked. We looked at books. We tickled. We NAPPED (oh glorious!).

It was such a good day. All compliments of one cancelled contract.

And while I'm back at work tomorrow, I'm more sure than ever before that it has all been worth it. I had more sleepless nights working at ad agencies than I did as a new mom. BY FAR. And this new, hybrid life is everything I hoped and dreamed it would be. I really can have both. Just not always on exactly the same day.

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Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Save the Date

It's official... We've set the date for our first ever meet-up for young adults in Winnipeg who live with arthritis, fibro, or a related condition. If you're in your 20s/30s and fit the bill (or know someone who does), please get in touch with me for all the details. It's happening on Saturday, May 8 and it will be super-informal - just grabbing coffee with a bunch of other people who GET IT.

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Monday, April 12, 2010


I am excited like a little girl on Christmas Eve about the very idea of having my house cleaned tomorrow...

Just had to get that out of my system.

There are very few things in this life that I enjoy more than the feeling of a sparkly clean house. And I have never in my adult life experienced that without is costing me very dearly health-wise.

Tomorrow will be a good day.

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Briony + Grandma

My very favourite photo from our Easter weekend with my parents...

This kid *loves* her grandma (aka 'baba'). They're best buddies, and it makes me so happy to watch them together. When we're not together, I hear Briony asking about her many, many times a day.

The thing that no one warns you about when you're pleading with God for your mom to become a breast cancer survivor instead of another sad statistic is the weight of the emotion you'll feel at every single milestone for the rest of your life (or hers). And sometimes in perfectly ordinary moments.

Today, it was re-watching the video of Briony walking back and forth between us in my parents' living room yesterday. I can't even imagine those moments this weekend without my mom there... I don't want to. If I even think it, my thinking turns to ugly sobbing.

I don't know how my family got so lucky, but I'm grateful for it EVERY SINGLE DAY.

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A Sign of the Times

In case you've ever wondered what it looks like for someone to Lose It...

This photo represents the culmination of Geoff working full-time, Lindsay working *more* than full-time, Katie being away for a few days, Briony teething, my grandma starting chemo, and all kinds of other related drama.

What is it? I'm glad you asked.

This, friends, is what it looks like for an entire bottle of Advil Liquigels to get knocked into the dishwasher and then run through a compete cycle. It's hard as rock and all melted together. I can't figure it out except that I was multi-tasking like mad and trying to cross a ton of things off my list right before bed when Geoff was working nights. But you'd imagine that I would have HEARD it fall. Or seen it. Or SOMETHING.

Talk about art representing life... :)

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Nosy Neighbour

Okay, so I'm trying to solve another neighbourhood mystery... It's not really that fabulous of a mystery because we live in the most boring neighbourhood in the world. Seriously. The worst thing that has happened in North River Heights in recent memory is that one of our treasured Academy Road restaurants lost their chef last week. It was in the paper for about a week and everyone is talking about it. (Us included... It's probably our favourite place to eat out.)

And sometimes kids from other parts of the city come here to steal our cars. But we have an obscenely disproportionate number of police patrols around here, and they usually catch them. There was an *attempted* break and enter on our street last year and there were dozens of cops here in about two minutes. We're talking about dogs and everything, with the entire area blocked off - and then multiple police visits and line-up photos and all kinds of Law + Order style drama (no Chris Noth, unfortunately). I'm not exaggerating. You can't make this stuff up.


There's a couple on our street who had a baby. We think so anyway... Everyone kind of hibernates in winter so it's hard to know exactly. But the guy who we assume is the dad pushes a baby stroller up and down our block every day now. And that's the thing. It's every single day, and it's seriously just up and down our block. For HOURS sometimes. At first, we didn't think anything of it - other than that the baby must be colicky or something. But he never goes around the corner or takes the baby on an actual walk. Just up and down the block.

Our current favourite theory is house arrest with some kind of ankle thingamajig that allows him to go a certain distance from the house. Or two ex-girlfriends who each live one block away in opposite directions and have restraining orders against him. Don't even get me started. I'm losing sleep over this one. And I still haven't solved the mystery of our across-the-street neighbours' bizarre little revolving door or visitors.

SHEESH. I don't have time to work full-time outside of our home and get all this Nancy Drew work done!

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Monday Secret

I think that this is the closest I've ever been, and I feel like I'm getting closer every day...


Monday Smile

I saved my Friday Smile for today because it was just too awesome... A Toronto radio station has switched over to an ALL GLEE format for today only, to promote the new season that begins tomorrow. So fun! You can listen online here.

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Sunday, April 11, 2010

Tears of Joy

OH MY WORD have I ever been emotional this weekend. (I can sense electronically that you're planning some smartass 'maybe you're pregnant' comment. I hope you can also feel me kicking you electronically? Did it hurt? Really? Well, I meant it to.)

My official diagnosis is:
all the normal 'my baby is walking and becoming independent' emotions
all the normal 'SO PROUD of my baby' emotions
some extra little 'PHEW! there's nothing wrong with her' emotions
tiny little 'sad that I missed it' emotions
bigger little 'can't believe Geoff still hasn't seen it' emotions

We were *so* ready for her to walk (obviously). But I'm still mourning the loss of our baby girl, while wrapping my head around the idea of having a little girl living here with us. Oh, and trying to keep her awake for another hour past her bedtime so that Geoff can hopefully see her in action tonight still.

It's shocking how quickly she's progressing in her walking ability. I don't know anything about baby development, but I guess it was to be expected - she's not like an eight month old who flukes into figuring it out. Briony doesn't do anything until she's ready. It's not her style. But WOW, was she ever ready now!

This mommy thing is a ride, isn't it? I knew it, and I expected it, but I keep on being surprised by the intensity of it all. There are so many different kinds of tears. But at their very core, they are all tears of joy.

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Make an on-line slide show at

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Saturday, April 10, 2010

It's Official

I have a baby girl who can walk.

And as predicted, I totally missed it. Briony and I are at my parents' place this weekend and I left for two hours this afternoon to hang out with Erin. I got back to discover that my mom, my sister, and my dad had all been witness to Briony's very first official steps.

Fortunately, she was more than willing to share a series of replays with me - all the way up to 10 or 12 steps straight into her mama's arms. I am SO PROUD of my baby girl. And she is SO PROUD of herself. The look on her face said it all... Such amazing parenting moments. I can't wait for Geoff to see on Monday :)

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Friday, April 09, 2010

Bye Bye Baby

I'm at work all day today. (At work for real, not working from home.) Briony's at home taking some tentative steps between hanging onto Katie's fingers and whatever object she's aiming for.

Part of me wants her to wait for me. Part of me just wants for her to be successful, and to figure it out whether I'm there beside her or not, and understands that the first steps I actually see her take will be her 'first steps' in my memory - and that's absolutely okay.

This mommy thing feels so complicated some days. And yet, when I think about it, there's nothing I can do about it. It's the simplest thing in the world because - really - it has nothing to do with me. This is *so* outside of my control. She'll walk, and she'll walk on her own terms and in her own time. She has sure as heck proven that these past couple of months. I can't control it, and I should get to work on accepting that because my ability to control anything ended at 6.40 in the morning on November 16, 2008.

But you can bet that I'll be cheering my heart out for her the first time I see those steps. As far as I'm concerned, nothing's official until mama says it's official :)

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Wednesday, April 07, 2010

Go Go Go

Today, I was forced to put on real pants and go to work like a real grown-up.

I'm kind of kidding. I enjoy the days when I get to be Professional Lindsay, they're just extra busy. Not that I'm not professional when I'm working from home... Whatever. You know what I mean.

Today, Briony was up EARLY again. Blech. I had a half-hour of Mama + Briony Time before Geoff came home from a night shift. We had a few minutes together as a family before he took over so that I could start getting ready for my day. Then Katie arrived to take over Briony duty so that I could leave for work and Geoff could go to sleep. She stayed until he woke up, and then he watched Briony for the rest of the afternoon - allowing me to hammer through a few in-person client meetings and grab lunch with my friend Chuck (the creative director at the agency where I had most of my meetings today).

Still with me? These are the days of our lives :)

I came home to a super cranky teething baby girl, and we powered through dinner before deciding to distract her with a walk to the park to play on the swings - and I swear she cheered up the second we put her in the stroller. We stayed out until bedtime (and gave her a bottle on the road), and she CRASHED once she was back at home and in her crib.

I'm going to declare that it was a good day. It was made even better by the fact that I managed to wrap up work by 10 pm today (ugh... I KNOW) so that I could watch the American Idol results show on PVR. Which would have been a fun little ending to my day if I hadn't accidentally come across the results of the show about ten minutes into watching it. I WAS SO MAD. Both about ruining the surprise and about the result, but happy with the resolution. And that's all I have to say about that, just in case I ruin it for anyone else ;)

Oh, and GLEE on OPRAH made me extra-happy. Other than the part where I had to watch Oprah for an hour. Is it me, or is she more annoying than ever? I used to be able to watch her sometimes, and now I actually avoid it. But anything for my Glee kids... It was glorious. And it's making me even more excited for next week than I already was.

And now it's the end of a very long day. Cross your fingers along with me that Briony will not turn our two early mornings into three. I think that three probably constitutes a 'streak' of some sort, and it only takes 21 days to form a habit... SHUDDER. I cannot survive on this schedule for much longer.

I am very much looking forward to tomorrow. My mom is coming for Tiber River pedicures in the morning and then sushi for lunch. It's pretty much guaranteed to be a good day :)

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One Moment With Briony

Overheard during breakfast this morning...

Talking to herself in her high chair:
Where's the Baba? I like Baba.

'Counting' her Cheerios:
Three... Two... Three... Two... Four...
(maybe not a genius mathematician, hehe)

Touching a row of three Cheerios, accidentally touching the second one and sending it flying onto the floor:
Where's Two? Where'd it go? Uh oh...

After Geoff replaces the second Cheerio:
Hi, Two!

Geoff (touching Briony's feet): Toes!
Briony: No, SOCKS.

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Tuesday, April 06, 2010

Team Irma

Briony + I are signed up to participate in the MS Walk on Sunday, April 25.

I'll be walking alongside a group of friends in support of a wonderful woman named Irma Bergen. Irma is the mother-in-law of my good friend Melanie (and connected to our family in a list of other ways that tend to happen when you're from a small town like Niverville). It's scary how much MS can steal from a person, and how it affects an entire family. We need to find a cure. And I think it's super important to let these families know that they're surrounded by people who are walking alongside them.

I hope that you'll consider supporting our cause. As a member of Team Irma, I'm trying to raise $125 this month. Click here to make a donation in any amount - nothing is too small. That's the most amazing thing about these types of projects... All those tiny little donations add up to accomplish so very much. (Of course, I won't turn away a non-tiny donation... hehe.) Thanks in advance for your support, on behalf of the Bergen family.

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You're Welcome

I am now apparently sending out random unsolicited advice to local businesses who are missing critical PR opportunities. And I'm not even trying to drum up business - I just genuinely feel bad that they're missing out on opportunities that seem blatantly obvious to me. They could seriously spend ten minutes (and ZERO dollars) to do something that would help retain existing customers. Why would you work for years to build a customer base and then sit on your hands and watch them leave?!

Not sure if I'll be getting a 'thank you' or a 'crawl under a rock and die' from this morning's email... But I just couldn't help myself.


Monday, April 05, 2010

It's A Bird... It's A Plane...

It's JOSY!

And she's coming a week from TOMORROW!!

To CLEAN MY HOUSE and make it shiny and gloriously germ-free!!!

Hang on a sec. I need to sit down. I'm dizzy from that overuse of exclamation points.

I am so hopeful that things will go well and that we'll be able to schedule regular Josy Days... The plan is to have her come every other week, just to do the main areas of the house. I can't even tell you what a giant relief that would be. I seriously feel like crying. I'm making good progress in letting go of my feelings of inadequacy about not being able to do it all. I really can't... I know. It was news to me too.

And it was yucky to think that I need to pay two other women to come and do things like play with my daughter and scrub my bathtub... But Katie allows me to work (and to occasionally schedule some time on my own, with friends, or with Geoff). And if all goes well, then Josy will allow me to spend more of my non-working time giving quality energy to my family.

Next week is a trial, but it feels pretty much win-win when at the end of that trial, my worst case scenario is that I'll have a squeaky clean bathtub that I didn't have to clean myself :)

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Monday Secret

I couldn't find a Post Secret postcard that I really connected with this week, but I dug up an oldie that I'm sharing again instead... Enjoy!


Stop It, Lindsay!

UGH. I need to stop trolling real estate listings. I'm only frustrating myself because 'bigger and better' is not only incredibly unnecessary, it's also incredibly expensive... And I am coming to the realization that I love things like drinking Starbucks and traveling to new places and always having at least one pair of jeans in my closet that fit me *perfectly* and knowing that Briony can go to university someday too much to also be in love with a perfect, pretty, larger-than-necessary house.

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Saturday, April 03, 2010

I Am NOT The Biggest Loser

It's true. Our final weigh in happened on Friday morning and my team finished in the middle of the pack (again). I'm totally okay with that. My goal for this round (beginning the second week of January) was to lose 8 pounds and I lost 8.5. How can I be disappointed? It is not a big number, but it's big progress - especially when I give myself some credit and factor in being as busy as I am *and* dealing with arthritis + fibro + chronic fatigue. I'm actually kind of proud of myself.

I've updated my little weight loss ticker on here to reflect my progress since September 2009 - and my overall goal weight for December 2010. There are no immediate plans for another round of Biggest Loser-style competition, but I don't think that matters to me. I'm going to keep doing what I've been doing. If I hit my goal by the end of this year, that's awesome. If I don't, it's no big deal. If I continue to eat well and exercise in a way that's healthy and respectful of whatever my body is able to do on any given day, then my weight will sort itself out and whatever weight I am will be the weight that I am supposed to be. I honestly believe that. This 'extra' weight isn't 'extra' at all - it was necessary to grow a healthy baby. And now that I don't need it anymore, it is slowly coming off again.

Can you believe that LINDSAY actually said that? And MEANT IT? I think we should all pause for a second and celebrate that bit of progress.

There are so many positive things that have come out of these two rounds of competition for me:

1. I've started focusing on myself again. It's not just about weight loss - it's about making time for myself and taking care of ALL of me. It's about what I eat and how active I am, but it's equally about MAKING time to read a book or go for a walk or buy jeans that fit or have a bubble bath. I'd lost some of that after becoming a mommy, and I feel like I'm finding it again.

2. I'm starting to feel more comfortable in my own skin again. I still look in the mirror and see a chubby girl, but I'm hating that reflection less and less. I'm starting to appreciate my body for what it has done for me (and Briony). It's not perfect, but it's strong and capable and my respect for my body is growing every day.

3. I'm really beginning to see that I CAN DO THIS. And on the weeks that don't go according to plan, I'm okay. It's not about a weekly weigh in, it's about long term goals and making myself healthier. If I gain the odd pound along the way before losing it again, that's okay. It really is.

4. I've taken steps to take better care of myself. Part of improving my overall health was addressing some of the things that were holding me back. I'm back on meds for depression and anxiety and it's going really well, I think. I took care of an eye problem that I should have taken care of YEARS ago. And I started to see a physiotherapist for a stress incontinence issue that started after I had Briony and kept me from being able to exercise (sorry if that was TMI, but I'm learning that I can't be embarrassed about it). I still can't take up running again, and I might not ever be able to, but it's getting better - and it makes me feel like I'm in control of my body again. This was a critical step in this process for me, and one that I only finally took in February.

5. I'm seeing the first tiny signs of how these changes are all adding up to help me be a better wife, a better mommy, and a better friend. Not every day... But I can already see how being happier with myself allows me to be more available and more present in what's going on around me. Just the promise of that is pretty strong motivation to keep going with this.

More thoughts to follow on this topic, I'm sure - because this is a journey and it's far from over.

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Happy Easter!

You know it's officially Easter at the Wright residence when I've finished making nests :)

If you haven't tried making them before, you have to. They're the easiest thing EVER. You're basically just making Rice Krispie cake - with crunched up shredded wheat instead of Rice Krispies - and then forming it into little 'nests' instead of pressing it all into a pan. Add some mini eggs, give them an hour or so to harden a little, and you're done. These things fly off the plate everywhere I bring them. I can't wait until Briony's old enough to help - or to care :)

We really weren't sure what to do for her to celebrate Easter this year. I didn't want her to have chocolate, so I found and filled this little bucket with Easter goodies - a couple of books, some socks, some new Little People, and a bunch of plastic eggs filled with little snacks that she's allowed to eat. We're giving it to her tomorrow and we'll see how it goes over... It's so much fun that she's starting to notice holidays, but it will be even more fun when she understands what's going on.

How do you celebrate Easter with your kids?
Or how did you celebrate when you were a kid?

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One Moment With Briony

You know you have a toddler when...

Briony says: No.
Translation: No.

Briony says: No, please.
Translation: Yes.

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Friday, April 02, 2010

Ordinary Moments

I love mornings at home with Geoff and Briony. I love everything about them. I love it when we're all on the couch together in our pyjamas, Briony with her bottle and the grown-ups sipping tea and talking about the day ahead. Every once in a while - in the middle of one of these perfectly ordinary moments - I can feel my breath catch in my chest, realizing that even though there's nothing really special about this morning, we can only live it once. It's never going to be *exactly* the same again.

Everything is moving so fast. People tell you that it will happen this way, but you have no concept of how quickly time can fly until you have a child. My baby girl looks visibly bigger and older in the last couple of weeks. Geoff swears that she grew up during the three days he was gone to work and didn't see her this week. I think he's right. And even though my days this week each stretched on FOREVER... They're gone. I can't believe it's the end of another week already.

It's overwhelming sometimes. I think it's particularly profound as we realize more with every passing week and month that our family feels complete without the second baby we both always just assumed we'd have. I boxed up most of my maternity clothes this morning to drop off with a friend who needs them, and packed up a bunch of baby things for another friend and a consignment store. We're not getting rid of everything - a thousand people have all warned us that we should wait a few more years to be absolutely certain - but I think that just knowing that our family might be complete now makes the passing of time so significant for us. We are truly living each moment, each day, each stage one time.

I sometimes wonder if that's why I've been such an emotional mommy - because I'm living the 'first time' and the 'last time' at the same time. I'm a little frightened about what the *real* milestones are going to be like. HELLO first day of kindergarten... I'm trying to wrap my head around the implications of dropping off my first baby for her first day of school and letting my last baby go at the exact same time. I should buy shares in Kleenex now to make paying for her university a breeze. GAH! University!... ;)

As I sweep the floor for the millionth time, anticipating the day when we no longer have a crawler in our house, I realize that the day Briony walks will be the end of an era for our family. I think that's why I secretly love that she hasn't started yet. It's keeping her a baby for just a little bit longer, and it's like God knew that I needed that time to snuggle my baby and enjoy the fact that she's not quite independent yet.

I've been mulling this all over in my heart this week, and then I visited another blog this morning and came across a wonderful video that summed up everything that I've been thinking about. It's absolutely beautiful.

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