I’m Not Tolerating You

When did words stop having meaning? Or more so, when did we start changing what they mean to fit our agendas?

I hate when people preach tolerance. Tolerance? I don’t think it means what you think it does. What it means is that even if you are a good person, with a good heart, who lives a good life, I can still hate you for petty differences. Tolerance doesn’t equal Acceptance. Tolerance is the Invisibility Cloak of the bigoted.

Is it just me or does it always seem to be the most self-righteous people preaching tolerance. “Gaze upon me, atop my soapbox. Wrapped in my tolerance blanket. Look how I suffer your superficial differences to me with kindness and grace!” So, look how you smile at my face and sneer behind my back? A rose is pretty but the thorns will still cut your fucking hand open!

I’m not teaching my kids Tolerance. It implies that they are better than the person they deign to tolerate. I’m teaching them Acceptance. Do they have a good heart? Are they a good person? ACCEPT THEM! Are they a jackwad? ACCEPT THEM AND WALK AWAY! That may be a lesson for another day.

“When someone shows you who they are, believe them the first time.” -Maya Angelou

Accept them for who they are and choose whether or not you deserve them in your life. Are they a good person? Do they have a good heart? Everything else falls under those categories and last I heard the shade of your skin, shape of your genitals, or the other good people you love, have no bearing! That’s what my children will go into this world armed with. How about yours?

xxo

C

Top 5: New Year’s Resolutions 2017

Obviously my new year’s resolutions list has healthy food, workout more, drink more water, the usual. I’m trying to narrow down some more specific resolutions though. So for my first Top 5 List of the year I give you:

My Top 5 Resolutions (2017 Edition)

1. Don’t argue with strangers in  the comment sections. I know. I KNOW! It’s surprisingly hard though. There are so many stupid fucking people and they always feel the need to comment. It’s not my fault. I don’t even know them so I don’t know why I feel compelled to reply. Like my voice of reason is going to change their minds? Come on, me! Get it together.

2. Yoga more. So, every pregnancy relaxin (hormone) has effed up my hip joints. Like, way too loose. It was extremely painful and the pain lasted for months after each baby was born. Well, a fourth pregnancy sure as hell didn’t help that along, nor did sitting on my ass for the last year! The pain is gone, like I can lie down on one side longer than 3 minutes at a time, but the relaxin is gone too and since I didn’t stretch it throughout the transition it’s super tight. I can only sit half cross-legged! My right hip will not bend outward. Up and down is fine, just to the side is straight busted. Sooooo yeah, I’m going to yoga my face off this year! That’s just unacceptable. Plus all of the other benefits are great too.

3. Self Care. I have 4 kids. I homeschool. I don’t ask my husband for help enough. I bite off more than I can chew. I painted my nails the other day and it was the first time since before Baby J was born. I’m tired of being tired, frumpy, disheveled. That’s not who I am. This is not my body. And no, I don’t want to hear that “mom’s bodies change” blah blah blah. I know that! I can live with the stretch marks. I don’t need to be 19 again, but THIS? This isn’t me. This is exhausting and unhealthy. I want to be my best me and I can’t do that if I always put myself last.

4. Leave the house. Ugh! It’s just so much work. Is it Summer yet?

5. Organize. I am good at making a schedule. I am not great at sticking to it. I have a lot of things I want to do and accomplish this year and I need to organize my life in a way that actually works. I got a new planner (I love a new planner!) and I plan on really using it.

What kind of resolutions did you guys come up with? Anything new, or continuing on from last year? Do you like to use the new year as a fresh start?

Happy New Year!

xxo

C

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Here’s a photo of me wearing lipstick to prove how serious I am about that Self Care resolution. Lipstick people! LIPSTICK!

One

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That first year. Oh man, that first year. No matter how many times you do it, it’s a whirlwind. Love, hormones, exhaustion, schedules, diapers, outfit changes, milestone after milestone, (did I mention the love?) all coming at you from every direction. Whirling, spinning, tightening, and releasing. I made a conscious effort to savour the moments. I took deep breaths. I tried not take on too much. I chose snuggles over schedules. I chose giggles over battles. I chose one day at a time, and yet here we are, a year gone by, and it felt like a second. Like a heartbeat.

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This guy right here. Baby J. He’s such a little character. Dubbed (by me) The Happiest Babe In The Land, he has no shortage of smiles. He has his crusty moments (currently cutting 4 teeth!) but the smiles, the giggles, they are plentiful. He’s our little Good Time Charlie!

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A year is so short a time to change so much. Every week he’s a little different. Every growth spurt matures his tiny face. A moment ago he watched, wide-eyed, from his swaying bucket seat, now he’s into everything. EVERYTHING! He’s really hitting his fresh toddler stride right now. Touching, climbing, pulling things out, pushing all of the buttons, pulling all of the strings.

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I’m not one to compare my children in a ‘one vs the other’ kind of way, but I do think it’s funny to see who they act the most like. In looks? He’s O. Fairer, yes, but O in the eyes, ears, mouth, and nose. His attitude though? E. E all the way! The Tank is our woo girl, but also the sassiest little sass monster you’ll ever meet. Baby J is her mini. The two of them are always running around together, screaming, dancing, and carrying on. He loves all of his big sister’s nonsense. They laugh the biggest and cry the most outrageously. You know the cry I’m talking about. That real open mouth one. The one that sounds a little like a siren, like they want to make sure you heard it, but it sometimes turns off abruptly when they get what they want. Uh-huh…

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Baby J is the sweetest last babe a parent could ask for. He’s a solid snuggler, a great hugger of late. He’s just figured out the open-mouthed drool kiss which is gross to a non-parent but oh so sweet to us seasoned vets. His laugh is so pure and smile so bright it does make me feel like I’m doing okay in the Mama department. It’s inspiring really. To love life so purely. What’s that quote, something about sun shining out of your face?

“If you have good thoughts they will shine out of your face like sunbeams and you will always look lovely.” Roald Dahl

That’s what I wish for you my sweet babe. That your thoughts are good more often than not, and that you have the strength, the magic, to fight the bad ones when they come. For they will come ever so often, such is life. I’d love to keep them from you forever but that will do you no favours. What I can do is build you up. Fill your cup. Make your life beautiful and magical for as long as I can. I don’t want you to build walls, I want you to build paths. I wish you a long life to explore them. Great friends to hike them with. Wondrous love to keep your heart, and warm hands to hold on your journey. And when you’re out in the great big world, remember my Baby J, my little, my last,

I love you hotter than the sun my love.

Don’t forget to text me back!

Happy First Birthday

xxo

C

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Goodbye Baby, Hello Threenager!

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Baby G is no more. She is, officially, a Threenager. It’s been about 5 days and she’s already changing so much. Her sentences have really expanded in the last few days, and her pronunciation has sharpened. To some that may sound trivial, but most parents know how drastic that can feel. These are the years when a toddler can go through a cranky, achy, feverish growth spurt and come out the other side 100 years older! (Or so it feels.)

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She still seems so small to me though. She’s always been a tiny sprite. Fairy-like, bouncing from petal to petal, riding the breeze. Maybe it’s just because O and E are beasts! G is small but she is a force to reckon with. It is the batting of her beautiful wings that starts many a tornado.

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G isn’t our loudest, but she is our most animated. Ever the actress she is prone to the angriest tantrums (read: semi-hilarious rage planks) but with big emotions comes big love and big joy. Big smiles and big hugs. She loves pretend play, whether it be with toys or siblings. G is also weirdly good at pantomime. If she offers you a pretend snack from an imaginary plate, you believe it! She would be an excellent Lost Boy. Bangarang!

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You know those great kid-adventure movies from our childhoods? The Goonies, Hook, The Challengers (Canadian content!), E.T, basically any movie where they get on their bikes (hockey stick on the back possibly included) and just ride off on an adventure that would make their mothers sweat? Yeah, that’s G. She’s one of those kids. She’s Mickey arm in arm with Data, skipping down the hill to the Lighthouse Lounge without a care in the world! I hope she never loses this sense of adventure. I’ll sweat it out if I have to.

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G keeps me on my toes. O and E are different, but similar in many ways. G is in a league of her own. Sometimes I think she was built solely to put E in her place. She takes no shit from her big sister. E’s personality is huge. She is loud and chatty and exuberant and bossy. G is a scrapper. She will not be quieted, spoken over, ignored. She will not be taken advantage of. I love that! Although those traits sometimes drive me nuts, I know they will serve her in life and I know that they teach E some valuable lessons on sharing, kindness, and team work.

To my tiny sprite, my adventurous pixie, I wish you a lifetime of warm breezes to ride on. A plethora of adventures and good people to enjoy them with. I hope you feel loved and give love freely. I hope you keep  your fire and fight and use them appropriately. I hope you soar. I will be here (sometimes sweating) to catch you if needs be and provide you a safe place to land.

And even though you just said that “daddy is my best fwend not youse!” I love you hotter than the sun my love.

Happy Birthday

xxo

C

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E 5.0

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E turned 15 5. I’m not sure who gave her permission, but she did. She’s changing so much and so fast, every single day. Growth spurts are rolling through, sometimes overnight, that change her. Little by little, into someone new but ever the same. her little shoots are gaining length and strength, a few buds have sprung up, even a tiny leaf or two have opened. As always, it’s my job to quench her thirst and ensure she has adequate sunshine, but my privilege to watch her grow.

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5 brings with it new skills, new understanding. She’s grasping new concepts. She’s devouring new materials. E loves “school work” and by that I mean she loves crafts! She even enjoys the worksheets and printing practice as long as she can go fast. She loves to go fast. She has little patience for waiting around. Not for her, slightly bigger, brother to catch up, or for her (woefully slow) parents to get ready to go. She is, however, very helpful and doesn’t mind lending a hand to get you going. E has been ready to “giv’er” since before she was born. A tiny babe, jazzercising in utero, to the noisiest/chattiest toddler I’ve ever met. She’s always had something to say and has always been on the move. She likes a fast scooter, fast feet, and a fast mouth!

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E has always been her own little person and 5 has already brought more of that big personality to the surface. She is quite sassy (don’t look at me like that, I can’t control genetics!) and gets in quite the little mood when she doesn’t get her way. Sometimes I look at her and think “Who spoiled you? Who told you that you could have whatever, whenever? Me? I think not!”. She’s a sore loser and (possibly) worse winner. She’s competitive which will serve her well, but sometimes causes arguments with her siblings. She rarely stops talking. She opens her eyes in the morning with dreams on her lips and snuggles into bed with a lively retelling of the days events. She could be a beautiful story teller one day. I imagine her encircled by listeners as she regales them with Robert Munsch level enthusiasm. Or maybe she’ll play rugby for Team Canada, I wouldn’t even be surprised.

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I have so many hopes and dreams for my E. I dream of her being happy, most of all. I hope she is content with her life, that she fills it with true friends and warm family. That her heart is full. I don’t know what that will look like in 20 years, in 30. Right now, all I can do is try my very best to make her feel that way. To fill her up with joy. To keep her safe, and make her smart, but let her soar even when it means she might fall. Parenting: The Never Ending Balancing Act.

So to you my E. My Tank. My daughter. Who pushes my buttons, boundaries, and patience. Who fills my heart with joy and my life with laughter. To you I promise to try my very best. To water you daily, and let the sun shine on your face. To enrich you soil. To step back when necessary, and watch you grow.

I love you hotter than the sun my love.

Happiest of Birthdays.

xxo

C

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Right Now

I am sad.

 Right now I’m lying in my bed, a restless 4 year old by my side. My tiny son breathing gently in his bassinet. My little girl is sleeping soundly in her room. My giant 6 year old is sleeping too. My husband is playing video games downstairs and I hear him laughing and joking with mumbly voices in his headset. I am grateful to be safe right now. I am grateful that my family is here with me. That my children are sleeping soundly. That the scariest thing they’ve experienced is a day without screens for acting up. 

Tomorrow I will wake to the sound of tiny voices. Laughing and bright. Telling stories, showing me things, asking what we’re having for dinner (because they still haven’t figured out the breakfast/lunch/dinner system). And I will get busy. And I will laugh with them. Smile with them. Breath with them. I will be caught up in my life, in my gratitude. 

But, right now? It feels like the world is falling apart. The “what if’s” are creeping in. This world is convulsing in pain and I can feel it in my bones. 

So for right now, 

I am sad. 

C