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Showing posts from 2018

12 week Challenge: Food Prep/ Meal planning

The last time I was on a challenge like this, the meal plans were provided but I struggled with making substitutions because I didn't know what could work for a substitution and some of the meal suggestions were yucky, well not yucky but not to my taste.

This time around we are working with macros, so we can eat the foods we like and build our meal plan that way, but we have to track our macros. Not our calories, but our macros.  So this is a new thing for me, but I was able to go out and shop and now I have meal prepped for the week.  I have a plan for suppers, I have my lunches, breakfasts and snacks packed and my SIX cups of free Veggies.  SIX CUPS!!

I like veggies, but I like veggies and dip and dip is not on the menu! I guess it could be if I watch the sugar content and let it count as a carbohydrate or fat whichever is higher on the nutrition label.... but that seems like a lot of work for so little reward. 

I've figured out my macros for the day will include oatmeal wit…

Books of the Summer

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Did you know I love to read books? I





I am a life long reader! Reading is one of my passions, and sometimes I think I should have, and would have gone into publishing if there had been any publishing houses around me! But I didn't and I am teaching which I think is a better fit for me anyways but I am a reader and I will always be a reader! I LOVE books!
I am especially fond of YA books.  So every summer I take a tonne of books from the school library and I go home and read and read and read.  In the picture below you see 13 of the 14 books I chose to read this summer.  I ended up reading 16 books and listening to 3 audio books. To say this was a summer full of reading might be an understatement!  I think I loved all the books I read this summer, definitely there were some I loved more than others, but I loved them all.

I am super glad I found read Philippa Gregory because the book was great and it also gave me the opportunity to have a new series or two to start without searching…

12 week Challenge

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I'm actually going to write about this blog before I update all my summer blogs, I just feel like for my success I need to be writing my blog entries on this challenge in a timely manner as it will increase my accountability, and it will hopefully get me back into the habit of writing.

So after leaving you all in the dark, unless you follow me on other social media platforms, of what happened this summer here's a look at what I am going to be doing for the next 12 weeks.

My very good friend Tamara joined Fit Body Boot Camp around 8 months ago, and she's had amazing results, her husband got on board as well and has seen a huge change, he doesn't work out at the gym but does his own workouts at home.  Men don't seem to have the same problems with losing weight that women experience, biology sometimes does not work in our favour ladies.

I considered joining a couple times, but the only time I have been successful, like really successful at losing weight I had done it …

Chapter 7 Genetics testing

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May 30 we had our last appointment for awhile, as now we are just waiting for genetic testing to see what turns up and what we will need to do from there.  Our Genetics testing took place at the Stollery Children's hospital in Edmonton.

Now my first impression of trying to find the Stollery is that it is VERY DIFFICULT! Google maps doesn't take you to the entrance, and when you try to walk to find the entrance, at least for us, we ended up going in a restricted area that did not get us to where we needed to go. We were in the general location that we needed to be, but for all intensive purpose we were lost.

Now my first impression of the staff that work at the multitude of hospitals in this location, because there are many, many hospitals that operate out of this location, the Stollery is only one of them, is that they are AMAZING! In the restricted area we ran into a gentleman who took us through the Staff only area to the main hub and walked us right up to one of the Stoller…

Friday Five: Five things I am going to do this summer

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Welcome to another edition of Friday Five!

This Friday Five is dedicated to making five goals for myself this summer! Five things I want to do and how I am going to incorporate them into my summer.

1. Reading, reading and reading.

I put myself on a reading hiatus for June.  I did this because I was reading a lot and I didn't want to clean out my school library before the summer hit!  I also used July to focus more on my novel writing so there was that too.  For the Summer I am going to read 14 books, I have already started book number 5 so I think I am on pace to reach this goal!

2. Writing, writing and writing.

I love writing, but I find I always make excuse why I can't write, or find other things to distract me with so that I don't actually write.  But I am putting aside an hour a day to do some writing.  This is turning into an hour in the morning before my kids are allowed to get up for he day.  Teddy doesn't listen to this but he is usually willing to sit and let …

Summer Cleaning

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I just cannot adhere to Spring cleaning, our life is much too busy during the winter and spring months to take a weekend to clean the house. I mean I complete understand why people do it, but I cannot figure out where they find the time.  In my little world spring cleaning is a nice idea but it always gets pushed until the Summer holidays.

Yes, yes I get it, summer holidays are for fun and relaxing and not busting yourself trying to do things that are boring and monotonous.  This all makes sense if you work a regular job where you only get two weeks off in the summer.  No way would I, or did I, want to clean my house as part of my summer holidays.  It just wasn't happening!

Now that I have a teaching job and all of my summers are off I have to find things to fill the days.  If I could just ignore the cries of "what can we do?" "I'm bored" "Can I watch tv" and get lost in all the books I am trying to read this summer (there are 14 titles) then I co…

Happy Fourth of July

Happy Fourth of July!!!

I love the Fourth of July holiday! I have so many great memories from my summers in California with my dad celebrating the Fourth with our neighbours and friends. 

So even though I am living in Canada and I am proudly a Canadian Citizen, I will wave my American flag today celebrating all that America has done and will do in it's past regardless of the who is sitting in the Oval office at the moment!

via GIPHY

Another Surgery

Since my third baby was born my body has been in revolt.  It has been revolting against it's current state and causing me all kinds of problems that I had never even imagined.

Truly, when I entered into puberty and the whole menstration cycle began, it kind of began without any pomp or circumstance. I didn't have abdominal cramping, I didn't feel sick, I was hardly moody at all.  I got a tiny leg cramp, I thought it was from gym class, so I went to the washroom and was disgusted and excited at the same time. 

But that's how most of my periods worked.  They were like clockwork, I was a full 28 day cycle and the only thing that threw me off that cycle was pregnancies.  But even pregnancies weren't so bad until the birth of my third child.

Now I am not blaming my third baby, but I think it's more than coincidental that my body start rejecting the natural state of things at the same time my periods began after nursing this cutie!

I know, get to what happened, expla…

Why is it always Daddy?

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There is a meme that is making it's way around the internet it goes something like this"
I carried you for nine months was in labour for hours couldn't sleep properly for almost a year and your first word is Dada.
I completely laugh cried when I saw this, because it's so true, and as those children get older it seems they are always asking for Daddy. Especially, my baby.  I will admit though that my middle and oldest are momma's boys, just not in the bad can't function without me way, but they prefer mom, so why can't the little one just give me a little of that wanting?
Yesterday's blog mentioned how I was writing more and building my writing skills as well as my photography skills, so that's where this blog comes from.
Teddy and I were home alone, husband and Lil Man had gone out for the morning to husband's work and that left Teddy and I to hang out together. Oh the tantrum he threw when he had to stay home and have quality time with mom, ye…

Still here, just not writing much

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I know this does nothing to boost my readership, and that is both frustrating and understandable at the same time.  I don't want to just put fluff on my blog, I am honestly trying to build a brand for my blog, something that I can say is my own, but I find my hands are just in too many things, I am good at a lot of things but not an expert at one of those things.

Maybe that's what it is, I am putting too much pressure on myself to be creative with my blog, with my life, that I am not celebrating what my life is and what I have to offer.

So I am making a change, this blog doesn't have to alter the world for anyone person, it's already altering my world. Focusing my writing skills, to make them better, focusing my photography skills to make them better so that is what I am going to do.

I also gave up reading for 6 weeks, 6 weeks I will not pick up another novel, and so to fill my time I used to spend reading I am going to be writing.  I've been working on a novel and…

Chapter 6: So many assessments

Both Chandler and Leigham went to pre school and it was such a good experience for them that I really wanted Teddy to experience pre school as well.  The school districts in Red Deer offer a pre Kindergarten program for students who may have some delays in specific areas and it is open to students who do not have delays but there is a price attached to it.  Either way this is a great program and I had signed Teddy up for the assessments prior to us knowing his diagnosis, but his diagnosis helps him get into the Pre K program so I will take it.

In March, Teddy had both of his assessments completed and both his assessments came back as he had some delays in all areas.  The areas they assess are receptive language, expressive language, gross and fine motor skills and awareness of self.  Obviously, with Teddy's diagnosis of CMT, he would have delays in the gross and fine motor skills and I expected a few delays in the expressive language and possibly in the awareness of self.  We don&…

Truthful Tuesday: Regression and getting a foot hold again

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I was really starting to feel like my old self.   My husband and I were communicating, work was going well, I didn't feel burdened by outside pressures and things looked like they were coming into focus.  I was able to start looking at my future and I was feeling confident, secure in the way it was heading. 

Was I where I wanted to be? Was the journey over? No, but that oppressive, I'm never going to get there feeling had shrunk into a quiet whisper in my head that I could watch say what it was saying and I was feeling detached, like it wasn't me, but some weird movie my head wanted to play and thought I should buy into.

Then if you've been reading my other blogs, the Chapter blogs, you will have seen that we've been dealing with my youngest sons walking issues and haven't really known what has been causing it but we were chasing down all possibilities.

When I was given his diagnosis, of CMT I thought my heart was going to break.  Guilty thoughts washed over me…

Chapter 5: How our life is changing

Man do things ever change and flip you on your head when you receive news you weren't expecting! I know stating the obvious, but even though we logically know it will happen it's still super frustrating and shocking when it happens.

So three statements the doctor made when we were there that started us on a path, Disability Tax Credit, FSCD funding, and AFOs. I am so, happy (?!?) that I have had the jobs I have had because none of these terms or acronyms were foreign to me.

Disability Tax Credit and Benefit are two things we will apply for, it's likely we make too much money to see any return in the benefit section but we will be able to use all our costs as tax write offs now.  Which is a small thing, but we are now going to be incurring more costs, with more medical trips, more medical supplies and such so anything to help us counter that will be hugely beneficial. I have the forms I need and I just need my doctor to fill them out so I can submit them to the government.

Chapter 4: What is CMT

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So CMT is the diagnosis Teddy got, but what in the actual does that mean? 

Well from what I have gathered and learned CMT is a hereditary condition that affects the peripheral nervous system, mainly in the feet and lower legs and hands and upper arms, but there are many different variations, and different ways CMT may become present in your genetic code. CMT is the most common of the neuropathy disorders affecting 1 in 2500 people.  So let's go through some of the ways it can be passed down and some of the different variants.

CMT can be and is usually passed from parent to child.  This can mean that one parent may pass on the mutated gene to their child, this is in a autosomal dominant.  Another way is both parents have an abnormal gene which causes the mutation of the gene in the child, thus in a recessive fashion.  You can also get CMT inherited in a X linked way, so the gene is located on the X Chromosome.  You can also have no apparent history of CMT in your family and the ge…

Chapter Three: Visiting the Neurologist

Teddy has what the Physical Therapists called drop foot. When you google drop foot the three main causes are cerebral palsy, muscular dystrophy and diabetes. I was certain that cerebral palsy was not his condition, I was pretty certain diabetes wasn't either, but not 100% certain and most muscular dystrophies, the most common ones anyway, don't present until age 4 and Teddy had been like this since he was walking at 18 months. But it was still terrifying.

We received a letter from the Glenrose Rehabilitation hospital in Edmonton just after Valentine's day, they stated it would be approximately 4 month waiting period before Teddy would be seen by the neurologist there.  My only concern was 4 months away was June or July and I wanted to make sure he was seen before the doctors took their summer holidays. 

My phone rang with an Edmonton Number on February 21st.  It was the Glenrose and they wanted to book Teddy's appointment, they had February 28 or March 13th available. …

Truthful Tuesday: Finding Supports

It is so important that people find the right supports for them. I will often use my natural support system but I have troubles telling some people my troubles and I really struggled with telling a lot of people in my natural support circle about my troubles.

This happened for two reasons, I couldn't or wouldn't identify what I felt was the problem.  My marriage being in a terrible place was devastating, so many things about my marriage seeming to fall apart and me being in a constant state of unhappiness was eating away at me, I didn't want to face it and it seemed shameful that I had let my relationship get this far.

That feeling of shame is terrible to have to go through, I wasn't the only guilty party in this, and try as I might I couldn't get my husband to engage with me in a productive manner.  Could I get him to get upset and angry, sure I am good at provoking him, but this is not effective. 

I think the other part is, you see people on Social Media and they…

Chapter 2: Physical Therapy

While we were in Nova Scotia, we told people we had to leave by a certain day because of this upcoming appointment, which was true, we did need to make it back.  There was a doctor there and he kept telling me nothing was wrong he seemed fine with his walking, but I felt he'd say whatever he needed to have us stay another day or two.

The trip to Nova Scotia was wonderful, my boys were great and they played and frolicked and made so many memories! But then we came home and it was back to reality.

While waiting to see Dr B, Leigham and Teddy brought me all the children's books in the waiting area to read.  Some of those books are super old and you can tell from their content that they were written in the seventies. I almost felt scandalized reading one book. I wish I could remember it better to put the title in this blog. Finally, they led us back to the patient room.

"Ah, how is everyone today," Dr. B greeted as he came in.

"I'm bored," moaned Leigham ha…

Chapter 1: Why are his feet curling like that?

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I loaded the boys into my white Dodge Caravan, buckling Teddy into his seat and telling Leigham to buckle up in his booster seat.  It's a fight most days, because Leigham goes in the door that Teddy's seat is beside and Teddy gets upset but today they know they are going to see the Chiropractor, so today they are happy to comply.  Usually, the chiropractor is just a mommy thing so for them it's a treat.

Driving through Red Deer is quick, the Chiropractor is downtown by the Safeway and takes about ten minutes.  Traffic is light this July morning since it's one, summer and two, after  nine.  We arrive at the Chiropractor and I take the boys in, holding Teddy's little hand tightly and we walk and he stumbles over the air.

"Come on Teddy, get up," I chide as he stumbles again, his walking has always been this way, it's like he doesn't know how to lift his toes over the cracks.  One day I fear I am going to wrench his arm out of his socket when he fal…

Truthful Tuesday: Depression and Disengagement

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I would say a lot of my feelings were from a longing to feel loved unconditionally and I felt I was missing that so my homesickness and increased desire to see my friends and family had to do with a lack of feeling loved in my own house.  I am in no way saying this is what was happening on my husbands side, but because we had let Silence become a bedfellow in our marriage we couldn't see or hear the others cries for love.

This disengagement happened over a long time, and it was both of us.  I am a talker, and I like to talk out problems and I can be a visionary where I see where we need to be but I don't always have a clear path to get there so I tend to just bulldoze my way through.  My husband is more of a thinker, he doesn't always know how and he doesn't like to express his feelings, he likes to think them out and then find a path to a solution.  The problem is I would overwhelm him with my communication and then he would stonewall me and not engage with me and wou…

Six on Saturday: Six Charities I'd like to work with this year.

I've decided this year that I want to show my boys about giving back to others.  So I have been looking into charity organizations that we can work with as a family.

1) Ronald McDonal House: I think this would be an awesome opportunity for my boys to give back to families that are going through a terrible time and this way they can help out.

2) Women's Shelter: this one is more of donating some things to the Women's shelter to help my boys understand that everyone needs help from time to time and that it is important that you treat everyone as you wish to be treated.

3) Parkland CLASS: This is an easy one for me, I love helping out my old employer, I believe they do good things for the people they serve and I like to have my boys help out with their carnival so they understand that just because someone has a disability it doesn't mean that you have to be afraid of them or treat them differently than you would treat anyone else.

4) The Mustard Seed: This organization pr…

Friday Five: Top Five Marian Keyes books to read!

I am a huge fan of Marian Keyes!! I own all her books and I follow her on social media, I brag about her writing to everyone who will listen! She is amazing and if you haven't read her before here are my favourite Marian Keyes novels and a brief summary of them for you to try!

1) Angel: Taking a holiday in Los Angeles to get away from the doldrums of life, the antics our protagonist gets up and the realization that the grass isn't always greener

2) Watermelon: What do you do when your husband announces he is leaving you on the labour and delivery bed?  What do you do when you realize its true and not some terrible bad dream?

3) Anybody out there: *This is an ugly cry book* Dealing with life after a tragedy, how one foot in front of the other isn't always the fastest way but it is a steady pace.

4) Rachel's Holiday: Life of fun and games, no responsibilities until your family tells you, you have a problem, then it's how do you keep yourself through the embarrassment…

Date Night with Prince T

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A new strategy we are employing as a family this year is to buy our children less stuff and spend more of doing things with them!! BEST! IDEA! EVER!

So for Christmas we told all our family to only buy them activities or passes to things we could do, like movies, Jump 360, Treehouse, the zoo, Royal Tyrell Museum, things we could do make a day or evening out of that the kids would build memories and maybe stop wanting so many things.

Adrian took Lil Man to his Rebel's Game and I got to take Prince T!  It was such a fun night! He had so much fun and it was nice to get out with just him! 

Here are some of our pictures from that night!
 Waiting for Dad to get home so he could take mom out on a date!  Pre Date Selfie!! Date Selfie, mom was also getting a massage!!
Best date Night!!

Wondering Wednesday! Family engagement

In my latest reading we read on different strategies to use to engage families of elementary school children, they ended the module with this question.

List and describe three strategies found in the readings that can support families in helping their children's learning in elementary school. What are the implications for your own actions, strategies, and/or practice?

The three strategies I would like to focus on and bring more into my teaching arsenal include guided teaching for parents of specific skills for their children (APTT), home visits, and purposeful, meaningful and consistent communication home with parents. 

These three strategies were shown to be highly effective. It tears down that we versus them mentality and the whole idea that they should "know" what to do because it's elementary type school work.  These strategies would be super helpful to me as a parent because my child is in French Immersion and I don't speak French fluently.  So to be able to go…