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Monday, January 31

A Plague on Both Their Houses!

I have two people on my hit list today.

The first is the sedistic, childless person who thought giving two year olds
a maliable substance they can tear into tiny pieces, get in small cracks or in their hair!
Thank you MR. PLAY-DOH!
(yes, I'm convinced the person who created play-doh was childless....because why else would do that to other parents....unless of course they were a grand-parent which is explicable!)

The second is the genius who created a tiny plastic person to squish the play-doh into tiny
lines which resemble hair. Tiny little worm-like pieces of junk created to be spread through-out a person's newly cleaned kitchen!


Erica at 4:31 PM

Sunday, January 30

Starving Artists....

I've been thinking recently about artists, artistic expression, creativity etc...

Our church has a lot of artistic people and there tends to be some emotional depth that comes with these types of people. (WARNING--gross generalization!) Anywho...I really like this depth and tend to click easily with artists even though
1- I am not an artist
2- they are often guarded
3 - they are sometimes socially retarded
and 4 - I am socially retarded (which may be why we click so well together as we stumble through a conversation)

The typical view of the artistic person (as I add to the stereo-type with my generalizing) is that they are tortured people. They struggle for perfection in expressing truth as they understand it, through whatever medium they choose for their art. There is the frustration of imperfect expression coupled with the pain of misinterpretation of their art. Add in sensitivity and you have the ingredients for severe emotional damage and insecurity. Those who continue to strive for excellence in their chosen art form in spite of these difficulties are truly brave. So artists are often starving, even if they have enough food to eat....

......Now let me zoom out to a global perspective for a moment....what happens to artist people in third world countries? Where people are literally starving, and survival is the highest concern, what becomes of potential artists. Do sensitive, artistic people lose the ability to create or does it just lay dorment while they tend to the needs of their physical body. Or more likely, is art irrelevant to a starving human?

......Zooming back into my little world. The place where I grew up was an artisitic desert. No dance, painting, music lessons, no poetry or even movies (arguable an artform). Moving to Winnipeg was a huge opening up of artistic ideas, and opportunities for me.
Yes, Winnipeg!
side note - ironically thought of by much of the country as a bunch of banjo-pickin', red-neck, freaks of nature was a mecca of creativity for me---with many new opportunities for growth

When I see art performed with excellence, there is what can only be described as passionate excitement that jumps inside me. Dance, painting, music, beauty in all its forms is a new world which I to join, and experiment with my own expression! (Which, unfortunately I am ill-equipt to do!)

As I near thirty I am took a ballet class....what an experience. Its a world I've nearly missed but who knows....maybe I'll learn to be a world class ballet connoisseur!

Erica at 1:54 PM

Friday, January 28

I want to PLAY.....

I think on this fine, freezing Friday I'll share my bad habits with you, and encourage you to join me in my bad girl behaviour.

My house is a disaster, I have laundry to do, and I have tons of paperwork to catch up on for my job. So....what do you do when you're overwhelmed and stressed out?
That's right!
Go play raquetball!

In the middle of this messy life, I'm taking an hour out to play. That's one thing I'm good at.
Responsibility? Not really. Routine? Never. Working under pressure? Absolutely.

I need to be under the gun to get things done and then I work like a MANIAC.
I guess there's not enough pressure yet so I'm off to play raquetball for an hour.

There is line between procrastinating and avoidance. But that line doesn't apply to me because I'm so good at BOTH!

I'm off to the Y! Ta!
Erica at 9:18 AM

Thursday, January 27

I Shot The Sheriff....

Okay, so its almost 1am and I'm pretty tired because I've been working since 7:30pm tonight, but still I think this is a pretty deep thought considering my mental state.

Here's my thought....

If you shot the sheriff but you didn't shoot the deputy, what difference does it make?
You're still guilty of murder...killing two people doesn't make you MORE of a murderer, does it?
I mean, if you kill ONE person, you're a murderer. If you're a serial killer, you're still just a murderer, its not like its on a point system. Its not like a serial killer is called murdererererer.

And if you didn't shoot the deputy, does that make you a better person? Like killing one person is excusable but TWO...sorry....NOW we have to throw in you jail. If you only kill one person, we'd have let you off with a ticket but with two murders under your belt, sorry! Its off to the big house!

If you were a truly innocent, and a good person who say...accidentally shot the sheriff but then were good enough to turn yourself might realize that you were going to jail anyway (even if it was manslaughter) and then you should take the rap for the person who DID shoot the deputy to spare them a life of inprisonment. Perhaps then, in the grand scheme of eternity, one may find redemption for having shot the sheriff in the first place.

But perhaps that is the point of the song. Am I being obtuse? Maybe every one can see the deep philosophical and theological truthes within this song, and I'm the only one who thought it was silly, mindless numb-skullery.

Well, I should go off to bed now before I start getting silly!

Tomorrow night I shall deal with the deeper meaning of "I'm too sexy". That song has sooooooooooooooo many levels!
Erica at 1:50 AM

Tuesday, January 25

A Day Off....

Last week was surviving the experiment of the full-time job.
This week is the back lash of getting my house back in order, catch up on hours for my part-time job, spend extra time with my kids, and do my body a favor and make it MOVE!!! (I ran this morning and it felt GOOD!)

With all the extra pressure, I feel like climbing into a hammock in some warm tropical place and just sleeping all day.

I get breaks often as my mom and in-laws are great about taking the kids when I need to work. But I feel like it would be "cheating" to get my kids taken care of so I could just do nothing. Why is that?

Perhaps its the independent, hard (good?)working ethic of our culture.
If you're not doing something, your value quickly diminishes.
I heard on the radio the other day, some people discussing how North America is the only culture where "what do you do?" ranks among the first thing people are asked about themselves. In fact, some Eurpeans consider it a rude question.

I suppose taking a day off to do nothing wouldn't be so bad. It wouldn't make me a bad, or lazy person. It might even make me MORE productive. (But I don't want to get too radical with my ideas!)

I guess the whole day off thing is why they created Mother's Day.
Only 15 more weeks to go!!!!! Yeeeeee-hah!

Erica at 3:26 PM

Sunday, January 23

I SPY.....

We've started playing "I spy with my little eye" with our kids. Isabella understands the concept and she's quick to be witty.

However, her vocabulary doesn't allow for a plethora of adjectives as of yet.
Yet children have an innate ability to improvise when it comes to language, she has noticed that a lot of adjectives end in "y" so to describe something, just add that suffix and you're good to go!!! Allow me to demonstrate......

Isabella: I spy with my little eye....something that is "lighty". Its a light!
I spy with my little eye....something that is "curty". Its a curtain!

And so on and so on....

Its so cute.
Well, I must go now. My yummy soupy is almost finishedy!
Erica at 5:30 PM

Friday, January 21

I was thinking this morning about my daughter's reactions to not having mom with them all day. They seem very upset by it, and the care they are receiving is top notch! A day with your grandmas means McDonald's, cuddles, hugs, TWO chocolate puddings, swimming and more cookies than is good for you! Why are they so upset with me leaving? Is it just the change in schedule or disruption of what is normal?

What's the difference between mothers and others? (besides the "m")

This got me to thinking about my mom, and what it is that she is to me. Its true that when I'm with her, I am more relaxed and things seem easier. When you're with your mom, its a heart space that you can curl up in and be completely yourself. Its a safe place, where there is no need to explain the mundane because she already understands what you meant when you said......

Inside your mom's heart, you're known. The misunderstandings with other people are few and far between. Your likes and dislikes are implicitly understood. Its safe, warm, easy and relaxing. Its easy to figure out what you think when you have sounding board that can hear your thoughts and understands your thought processes so always gets the point a little bit ahead of you. Having mom around makes it easier to safely explore ideas because she's already pioneered most of the ideas but lets you go ahead and learn it on your own anyway.

Then I got to thinking, if this is what my mom is to me, and this is what I am to my kids. No wonder they are upset that I'm not there. Being a mom goes beyond hugs and kissing boo-boos, its having a heart big enough for your kids to curl up in.

(Then I started freaking out because that is a HUGE montrous task that I'm not sure I can handle! AHHHHHH!!!! Responsiblity! Pressure!! Lifelong RESPONSIBILITY!! AAAAAAA!!)

Then I realized what time it was, and I had to get to work so I had to stop philosophisizing! I'll get bakc to freaking out later!
Erica at 10:01 AM

Thursday, January 20


Its been four days since I last posted. I've been getting myself and the kids up early to get us all ready for the day. We get up, dressed, fed and off to grandma's house. Grandma drops me off at work and off she goes for the morning with the kids.

Any envy I ever had for working moms has all dissipated. I used to think it would be glorious to get up and drop my kids off while I get to go off for adult conversation. There is definitely a trade off here that I hadn't accounted for.

At the end of the day, I'm emotionally FINE!!! (vs. the stay-at-home emotional drainage of the day). However, I'm mentally exhausted! (something that NEVER happens while home with the kids) Its a bit of a trade off.

I haven't thought this much, for this long, in a long time! Phew!

I think I've had a nice experiment with the working mom deal, but I'm ready to go back to my "regular" routine. And my kids are ready for that too! This change has been quite a shock to them as well. They are not used to not having mommy whenever they want, and they haven't had their naps so they are pooped and in need of some SERIOUS cuddles!

So all you working moms out hat is off to you! You all have ONE TOUGH job!
Erica at 7:11 PM

Monday, January 17

A day job???

This week will be different from any other I've had in the last four years. I'm working out of the home for full days, while my mom and my in-laws care for my children.

I'm very excited, and a little nervous. I imagine this is how an assylum inmate might feel with a day pass. I'm leaving ABCs, pee-pee time, and "she pushed me" for adult conversation. Let's hope its all its cracked up to be!

I have no idea what I'm doing, as its the first day so I woke up at 6:00am to get ready!
I've decided that rather than being nervous about getting it right, I'll follow some good advice.
"Those who walk with the wise will become wise, but the companion of fools will suffer harm."
(Proverbs 13:20) or as I put in my blog last year......Stay away from Idiots!!!

I'll just pick the wisest person in the room and do what they are doing!

Erica at 6:53 AM

Sunday, January 16


This morning I had a breakfast date with four friends from high school.
It was lots of fun but very different from the last time we were all together.

It was great catching up, as five married ladies reminscing about crazy teenage stunts we pulled and telling each other about the lives we are now leading.

Much of our giggling and chattering was just as it was ten years ago....warm and silly, full of teasing. Some things never change.

There is something about old friends who shared adolescence with you. They knew you when you were awkward, insecure and emotionally unstable but they didn't mind because they were too! We saw each other through heart aches, puppy love, and teenage rebellion.

We share common memories, and experiences. Remember when so and so kissed so and so! What a riot!

I think high school is one of those things that shape us and make us who were are. I mean, we're all glad its over and would never want to go back there but it is unforgettable.

Today I got to remember with some good friends, and that's something pretty special!

Erica at 11:09 PM

Saturday, January 15

Two Categories.....

Any child of the 80s knows there are only two categories into which anything can be classified.
It either sucks or it rocks!

We've had a different weekend and many events fall into these two categories.
Here's how is all began...

On Friday, I got a call from my friend who lives in BC - Rocks!
Her grandma died a few days before - Sucks!
She was arriving that night in Winnipeg - Rocks!
I had a few hours before she arrived to clean my house - Sucks!
But my friend I hadn't seen in two years is arriving for a visit - Rocks!
She has to spend lots of time with family so I can't see her much - Sucks!
But we stay up late every night (morning) talking when she gets back here - Rocks!
She's out at a family gathering again right now - Sucks!
But I'm so tired from all our late-night talks I can have a nap! - Rocks!
She has to leave tomorrow - Sucks!
But we'll have a gathering of highschool girlfriends for breakfast before she goes back - Rocks!

I hope that was very clear, I know its hard for people who are very into tolerance to put things into categories that are black and white. But sometimes, having clear-cut guidelines can simplify life. But I guess narrow guidelines don't leave room for change or growth. So guess clear cut guidelines both SUCK and ROCK.......its a grey area!!!
Erica at 11:21 AM

Friday, January 14

Housing Shortage....

There is a slight housing shortage in Winnipeg, especially in certain areas of the city.....mine being one of them.

We got a phone call the other day from a real estate guy asking if we wanted to sell our house. Apparently we could sell quickly if we wanted to.

A few problems with that.....

1. We don't have another house to move into.
2. House prices in our area are very steep.
3. I don't want to move out of the area (unless its to Mexico or some sort of tropical climate!)
4. Its minus a BILLION and I don't want to move in this weather.

But other than that, its an interesting idea that I hadn't really considered (seriously) at this point our lives.

I had planned to stay in this house for another 5 years or so. Our backyard backs onto a HUGE park with a wading pool, swings, playstructure etc....

A new idea......

Erica at 2:41 PM

Thursday, January 13

My Sentiments Exactly!

When we went out last night, it was snowing. (Yet again!)

Rebecca looked up at the snow falling from the sky, and started to shout as loud as she could "GOD! HEY GOD! GOD! DID YOU SEND ALL THIS SNOW DOWN HERE? GOD! GOD!"

She kept shouting and waiting for an answer, so eventually I jumped in. "Yes, Rebecca God sent all this snow here."

And she replied, (very matter-of-fact) "Well, He can have it back".


Erica at 2:06 PM

Wednesday, January 12

Subtle Nuances....

I don't think my daughters are completely grasping the subtle nuances in the Cinderella story.

I heard them this morning asking each other if they want to play Cinderella, so I thought I'd listen in.

Rebecca: OK, I'll be Cinderella and you be the step-sister.
Isabella: OK, I'm the lovely step-sister.
Rebecca: Good morning step-sister.
Isabella: Oh Good morning Cinderella, I love you.
Rebecca: I love you too. Let's have some tea.

I think there is something about the story that they may have missed. But rather than explaining the step-sister character's inherent evil nature being necessary to create conflict in the plot.........I just let it go.

There is something nice about believing that everyone is nice. Perhaps I'll preserve their innocent nature as long as I can. But if they fail Grade 12 English, I shall trace it all back to this moment that I failed to explain plot crises!

Erica at 4:11 PM

Tuesday, January 11

She has Complidence!

From the time Isabella could speak, she has used big words! I remember when she was barely 2 years old, she told me she had complidence (confidence).

I saw some evidence of that complidence last night at the Y!

The "big" kids (4 and 5 year olds) were climbing up the play structure at the Y and going down the big slide. Isabella is too small to be able to lift herself up the sections that the kids must climb to get up into the playstructure.

Instead of giving up, she climbed into the first section and approached the big kids to ask for help. "Peese! Peese! Could you help me climb?" she asked.

So one five year old grabbed her arms, and a four year old got under her little butt. They heaved and hoed until they managed to pull her up to next level. Once she was on the next level, I could hear her little voice shout, " I DID IT!!!"

I burst into fits of laughter! Yeah! She did it! That four and five year old need hernia operations now but she made it up to the top! ha ha ha
It was so cute.

After about 3 or 4 times up the top, the big kids were getting tired of this game as Isabella is quite heavy. So they got wise, and taught her how to use a stool to boost herself up. So adorable.

I sat and watched her interact and negotiate with kids twice her age, with complete confidence! She is awesome! I'm really proud of her.
Erica at 3:50 PM

Monday, January 10

A Fine Line........

While cleaning up my daughter's room this morning, I found myself in an odd predicament.
I wondered, "how much of what I'm doing is cleaning and when have I crossed the line, and I'm just playing with her toys?"

So I figured out a scientific formula, its all very professional, mature and grown-up of me really, to be figuring out formulas, wouldn't you say?

1. Picking toys up off the floor ------ cleaning!
2. Putting the toys into their proper containers ----------cleaning!
3. Putting the clothes on the dolls, before putting them in containers------WARNING! This is the line--------YOU ARE NOW PLAYING------Not cleaning!

ha ha ha

But in my defense, they have some very cool toys now that I didn't have when I was a kid.
Polly Pockets are cool man! And they come with matching outfits and accessories, now if that isn't calling my name, I don't know what is!!!

Erica at 4:41 PM

Sunday, January 9

My Windshield

The other day, when we were driving on the perimeter our windshield was hit by a rock coming off a big semi. It made a small chip, which is annoying. As it has been heinously cold here, we've had the defrost on full-tilt. Long story short, we now have a HUGE crack through the entire windshield which is getting longer and longer...kind of like this story.

Anywho, I was thinking what a huge inconvenience it is to have to replace the windshield now, not to mention the extra (unecessary) cost.

A thought came to God is like my windshield. (bare with me)

Obeying God's laws and living right can often feel like caring for my windshield, its a pain in the butt, its inconvenient, and costly. But if I consider what life would be without my would be much worse. It would be cold and windy and dangerous, that little rock could have done a lot more damage if it hit me in the eye! I need the windshield when I am driving to protect and keep me from discomfort and danger.

Just like I need my invisible God to keep me safe and comfy by living in the way that I should. God's laws are sometimes hard and I feel like a chump for not doing things the easy way but I know that there is protection in doing what I am supposed to do.

Now I need my invisible windshield God to provide $50 for a deductible to fix my car windshield! Which is totally do-able!

Erica at 1:17 PM

Friday, January 7

Frankie says Relax....

Today was freezing outside but that didn't bother me or the girls. We took a day to just "chill". We stayed inside and just played, we looked at photo albums, popped popcorn and watched a movie together.

Around 1pm, Rebecca looks at me and says, "Mom, don't you think its time we get dressed?" hee hee hee

My little type-a personality girl didn't like the idea of staying in our pjs all day, I mean how will anything get done? I told her its a relaxing day and we'll just stay in our pjs and hang out. She didn't think so, she said, she'd just go upstairs and dress herself and I could stay in my pjs. So we did....

As the French say, "Chaqu'un son gout!" (we each do our own thing!)

That's the kind of day its been, slow and easy...perfect for pjs...or not! ;)

Erica at 6:09 PM

Thursday, January 6

Still Got It?

Last night I was at the Y and it was time for our group to go swimming. The last class went over on their time so there was a bit of wait. Not wanting to freeze my tushy whilst waiting, I sat in the hot tub until it was my turn.

In the hot tub were two young men, around 17 or 18. I noticed as I was getting into the hot tub that their stomachs suddenly shrank and their chests puffed out. Hee hee hee.... I was the only female around so (aside from being gay) I think they were sucking in their widdo tummies and flexing their itty-bitty pecs for little ole me. I laughed to myself, and thought....not bad for an old married lady with two kids.

After the class, I go get dressed and I'm thinking I've still got it! Then as I'm leaving the locker room I catch a glimpse of myself in the mirror. Oh my word!!! Its SUPER-NERD!!! I'm dressed in my huge puffy parker with a big thick navy blue toque all around my face, wearing pink and black gloves. I think being HOT in a Winnipeg winter is a hopeless cause.

I see on t.v. they have a couple reality shows searching for the hottest models in the world. Runway, swimsuit, covershots.....pppphhhhh! If they want a real challenge, send them all to Winnipeg in winter and say, "go outside and be sexy. Good luck".

Good gracious! The contestants might have to depend on personality and wit and we all know THAT'S not entertaining!
My point?
Winnipeg in winter is NOT sexy!
Erica at 8:35 AM

Wednesday, January 5


Well, its minus fifty degrees with the windchill today. That is pretty freakin' freezing if you ask me! I think a day like this calls for hibernation, animals have the right idea.
Anything below freezing, you just sleep through it. Sounds good to me!

I wonder what people on other continents where its always hot think of us. (If they can even fathom what -50 feels like!) Either they think we are totally out of our heads for living in a place where you can actually loose appendages by freezing them off! Or they respect us for living in such a harsh climate and being so hearty and spirited that we haven't killed ourselves yet! NO! No! no! Its not that bad!

I must look at the advantages of living in Winnipeg, even in the winter.
Its too cold for.....
crime (even the criminals don't go outside, the car theft numbers have dropped off considerably, its safe to walk in the streets, you could even run around naked and no one would touch you....except the coroner when they find your frozen corpse! What are you doing? Its minus 50! Put some clothes on, you freak!)

Okay, my mind is starting to wonder, I should end this post. PS...if you didn't see the bikini run in the news yesterday, let me just tell you. There are some people who ran half clothed in Winnipeg yesterday. I either admire them or think they are freaks!

Erica at 8:09 AM

Monday, January 3

RE-, RE-, RE-.....

Its a new year! Christmas and New Year's are over and done. Its time to move on the re-ordering the mess, re-moving junk, re-considering goals, re-cleaning and re-organizing!

In the process of taking down Christmas decorations, we decided to move the living room furniture and do a cleaning job under all the furniture. (The moving furniture part was D.J.'s idea, the cleaning part was my idea! ;)

There is a point in any large undertaking when you look at the mess around you and wonder if it wouldn't just be easier to move than to clean and put it all back in order. I call this point, the point of no return or DISASTER POINT!!!

So, we are re-organizing the kid's toys, the furniture, the decorations, the Christmas storage stuff! What starts as re-organizing one room has spread to the entire house.

So once the re-ordering, and re-organizing are complete, I think I'll re-tire, and re-lax and maybe even re-ad a book.
(OK that last one didn't work with the re- theme very well but at least it wasn't re-dundant!)

Erica at 1:02 PM