Breaks…

Today I had a “ahaa” moment.

Some people have natural and easy breaks worked into their days.  Mine doesn’t.

If you are a smoker noone questions you when you go for a smoke break.

If you are a coffee drinker few questions  are asked when you take a coffee break.

However, have you tried to just stand around and do nothing?

If you drink tea it’s kind of expected that you would sit down for a couple of minutes and enjoy it.

Here’s the thing….I don’t smoke or drink tea or coffee.  And taking a break to do nothing just isn’t me.

So….I say all of non smokers and non caffeineators…we should unite and revolt!

I say everyday we stand around or sit down and do absolutely NOTHING during the 15 minute coffee break.  And DARE someone to say something!

Of course, for me that means making myself sit down somewhere for a few minutes and not do anything….for the express reason of…not doing anything….

Supper…

As some of you know money is a tad tight right now.

So I decided that I was going to do something I saw on Facebook last week.

Someone had 7 bins, each with the ingredients for the days meals in it.

Today I went to Dollarama and bought 7 bins for $14.  I labelled them up all nice.  And I went through my freezer and cupboards.  I was hoping to come up with 7 meals I already had completely.  I came up with 14 with very little effort.  And all I’m missing is a can of pineapple and a couple bags of frozen veggies.wpid-wp-1443474341890.jpeg

So, I am feeling quite relieved that our groceries will last us for more than 2 weeks of dinners….I still have lunches to sort out.  However, I didn’t count on any leftovers from any meal so lunches should be mostly OK.

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I am very excited and relieved right now!

The Questions…

The other night Jason and I went to a movie. In this movie there was a scene where the mother was sitting on her daughter’s bed telling her she loved her and asking her if she knew that. The girl responded hesitantly. Then the daughter asked the mother a bunch of questions….like what were her team colors and team name and a bunch of other things. The mother sat on the bed with tears streaming down her face as she realized that she truly thought she knew her daughter, but she really didn’t. At some point the mother had gone onto auto pilot and had stopped putting in the work of building the relationship and maintaining it.

It made me think. Our family spends so much time in the same vicinity that we think we know each other. The question is…do we really? Or is it a facade?

So, I decided to do something about it.

I sat down with a stack of blank paper and I started writing. I started writing questions that we all ask when we are getting to know someone. And questions we ask when we care about someone. And questions we ask to help improve our relationship.

When I was done I had 8 pages of questions. I then went downstairs and made 7 photo copies. I hole punched them and stapled them together and wrote a family member’s name at the top of each.

Then I took some time and answered the questions on my set of questions.

Later, when everyone arrived home, I told them about the questionnaire. I also told them that they had until Tuesday to complete it. And of course I told them the first one done got a special reward as well as each person would get a small reward when they completed theirs.

The big reward was a movie pass. The small ones were favorite chocolate bars. The 3 youngest were excited to do it. Katie said she wasn’t going to do it….Until she realized there was chocolate.

As of today only Kieran hasn’t done his. We have already had all sorts of interesting conversations. And I have learned so much about my kids.

I really thought I knew them. And in a lot of ways I did. But relationships take time and effort. And I think somewhere along the way I forgot that we are all constantly changing. That our likes and dislikes and hopes and dreams and goals aren’t static.

I am SO glad I took he time to ask the questions. And you know what… the kids loved being asked! It made them feel important and valued and loved.

And who knew: if Kianna could learn anything she’d learn to ride a pig; if Katie could go back in time she’d stab Adolf Hitler before he could do anything bad; if Keilan could plan a one week vacation anywhere in the world he’d go to see uncle Kenny in Toronto ; Karyssa’s happiest memories are always when she’s having an adventure and making a discovery; and Jason and I share the same saddest memory….

And there was one question no one answered….what is the one thing that your parents have done that you regret the most? I guess we aren’t doing such a bad job after all…

Keilan’s New Start

Today we made the very difficult decision to change schools for Keilan.

I had thought that we would be home-schooling.  I had thought that our options for his unexpected behaviour were few.

As it turns out…we have an option we never knew existed.  He will be in a program called “Starting Points.”  They have 6 classes around the city and each class is 6 to 8 kids.  He is child 8 in his class.

We thought we had no options in the Catholic system because we weren’t Catholic.  For years we have loved our schools, but didn’t know we as non Catholics had choices too.  We’ve felt like the tolerated cousin.

This week we have felt loved and cared for.  We have seen our son’s needs being addressed and it has lifted our spirits.

This program is everything we have been trying to do for him.  They start everyday with activity.  They have a climbing wall in his classroom.  He will slowly be integrated into a regular grade 2 class.  I wish that class was smaller.  It’s 29…he makes 30.  But he will have his needs met here.  His class has a teacher and aid and woods home worker in it.  For 8 kids!

So tomorrow we go officially make him a student here.  And then probably the next day he’s back to school.  He’s been at school 7.5 days so far this year.  After tomorrow he’s missed 7.5.

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Although we’ve been working hard at home on other things…it’s time to get him back in school.  We’ve been working through his curriculum called Zones of Regulation about learning and managing your emotions.  And beat of all this class uses this too.  It’s all over the classroom.

So I’m still sad about his changing schools and leaving French immersion  (at least for now…grade 7 he could return) it is clear to me this is where he needs to be!

Super Yummy Gluten and Sugar Free Chocolate Chip Cookies…

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Everyone loves these.  They are soft and super yummy!