Saturday, December 19, 2009

2009 Christmas play

We live near(ish) to a small town that has a community supper every Christmas.  We had done a quick nativity play last year and a couple songs.  It had been a "hit" with the crowd, so they asked to do "a little more next year".  There were 4 homeschool families involved by now in our little weekly gatherings, so we went to work adding some more songs to our nativity play.  This year we even had some music to accompany us via stereo! 
My girls, Kate was a shepherd, Ruth was Mary and Mei was a sheep.  They did a spectacular job, despite the butterflies in the stomach before hand.  Ruth's biggest concern was being able to discreetly remove the baby Jesus from inside her robe to put him into the manger.  Joseph was a big help, dropped the stick horse and grabbed Jesus, returned Jesus to Mary and they turned around to place him into the manger.  Needless to say, the crowd enjoyed that!  Thankfully we had prewarned the girls they MAY laugh, but because they are loving the entertainment.

We received many compliments on the children's behaviour, the play and the singing.  One man had been in Canada for 40 years and this was the first year he "felt what Christmas was really about".  That was what Christmas was about for us, and why we put on the play.  The children are already thinking about what to do for next year, their confidence is soaring!  yeah for educational fun and community service!

They always have a few door prizes as well as a lovely free meal served to you.  Ruth and Mei both received porcelain dolls. 

Mei's looks like her Nana did when she was a girl.

Ruth's is a blondie, who looks like Nellie Olsen

Can you tell this was one of our "wise men"?

My hubby was still in Calgary, but I ended off my evening with "some sugar" anyhow!

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Missing Christmas in Manitoba

How can tears come so unexpectantly just by talking about carolling and baking dainties?  I find myself overwhelmed by a feeling of loneliness and sadness of missing out on the festivities I used to so enjoy.  A bible study potluck lunch windup, school concerts, carolling and baking and hot apple cider with friends.

I promised myself to make this Christmas special in the Cariboo, but I am still so lonely for things of the past.  Maybe it is in realizing that is gone and will never be the same.  Those same feelings come when your child takes their first step, when someone gets married, when someone is about changes!

I will invent a tele porting machine and just POOF be somewhere else for a day or two and then POOF back again.  Tonight calls for hot apple cider.

Wednesday, December 09, 2009

Smart Canadians

Well, you can imagine my delight that a few weeks ago while waiting for my hubby to renew our car insurance....I found...yes, oh yes, I found....a whole shelf at the library of FINANCAL books!  So I decided to make my way through them this winter!  The first I picked for the "read out loud to your hubby as you drive to Calgary" book was

Smart Canadian's Guide to Building Wealth by Pat Foran from CTV's Consumer Alert

We have in the past read "The Wealthy Barber", "the Millionaire Next Door", "Rich Dad Poor Dad".  This book actually talks about those briefly and interviews the authors some 10-20 years later.  VERY nice, it summarizes everything.

I am loving the straight forward, easy approach to basic daily financial decisions everyone makes.  It is not a "you are so stupid" book or a get rich quick scheme. 

The first thing we are putting into practice is something to better our credit score...mind you, it is not in the toilet or anything, but we realized something through this book.  Having a credit card we NEVER use just makes the bank think "oh, they COULD use another $10,000" because that is the credit limit, so to them, we are already in DEBT that much.  I am cancelling a bunch of cards we never even use...that means phoning them and actually cancelling, not just getting rid of the cards.

It is very exciting.  He said our credit score should go up and that is good!  Yeah for us!

Sorry, this is me and this stuff really makes my world go around.  Also just found another website that looks good too.  Tells you how to make your own cleaners, budget worksheets, recipes, gifts etc.  Only found it tonight.

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

My sweet's heart to mine...

Before you, my love, I thought I had answers

I thought I knew stuff

To questions of love, life and heaven above

Then I met you, with your smile and your calm

Your softness and tears, awoke something within

The questions have faded and the answers are clear

Love, life, and heaven

Are complete because you’re here

Yesterday, today and forever my love…be mine

Friday, November 20, 2009

Seven little girls...

Well ok, one of us is over 30, but the rest are little girls.  They are sitting in a row wearing their Little House on the Prairie-type PJ's, watching "UP" and eating popcorn.  Tonight each our my three girls has a friend over for a sleepover.  My youngest daughter, MEI,  often gets "the short end of the stick" on friendships, she doesn't have many girls around her age.  In 2003, our little town gave birth to only 2 girls...then 1 more moved in..thank goodness!  Poor Mei always had play dates where she got hit and had to share her toys, etc and has never really had a bosom buddy.  She does have one little cousin close to her age that she loves to see, but now we are three provinces heart sometimes aches for her and I wonder if she will know how to make good friendships.  God is bigger than my concerns though!

SO, tonight we have a friend for all.  Hopefully tonight they actually sleep and I get some sleep.  Last night I had that little Mei in bed with me while her two older sisters had friends sleeping over upstairs.  It was very warm and very cuddly...Mei and I.  She does not snore!  yeah!

I promised breakfast in bed, so I better deliver...

Good night to all, we can sleep when we're dead right?

Monday, November 16, 2009

Precious last gift

My Dad Allen was a last minute shopper...he would pile all us kids into the truck on Dec. 24th and head down to the "mall" which was really a Sears store and a Home hardware.  We were all given $20 (wow, this was the early 80's!!) and Dad disappeared and we took off looking for treasures for our family members.  I have a very distinct memory of loading up my purchases onto the till and realizing I had forgotten DAD!  So I grabbed a skate key chain (a key chain with a little skate hanging off!) for him and my grand total was $19.51 or something.  I had enough for a pack of gum!  Gum was $.35 back then...good times!  Mom got a sweat band for her hair...or workout...I don't know.  I thought the twisted blue/white sparkly thing was pretty...hummm, Mom didn't wear it to church like I thought she would. Tina got a Monchichi (monkey with a pink bib, that you could stick it's thumb in it's mouth).  Troy probably got marbles or something else pretty awesome, at least $10 awesome in 1980.

Well, the year of 1983, Dad needed to take his furs into Thunder Bay, Ontario and decided to make a holiday of it with Mom for their anniversary.  Guess we finally got to have a sleepover somewhere...oh the fun!  They took the furs in and Dad wanted to shop for Christmas presents for all us kids.  He was very adamant about it.  He picked out a china doll for my sister, a hunting animal type rock thing for Troy (I think) and then demanded to purchase a Cabbage Patch Kid doll for me.  They were not actually out on the shelves for sale yet, so Dad gave the clerk a story and she let him into the back to pick out one.  (shhhh don't dare tell anyone!)    He thought the one with the red pig tails and green eyes looked like my Mom, so that was the one!  I've often thought that the clerk had no idea how God was using her to bless a little girl for the rest of her life...

If I find the picture of me opening this present that 1st Christmas without Dad, I'll post it.  My daughter Ruth is 8 years old, like I was.  "Loila Joy" even has her birth certificate! just never know when you should be following that still and quiet voice in your heart...perhaps you are meant to be a blessing to others!
How something so small could turn into something so precious for someone...that is truly a gift.

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Just a little girls memories

I thank God for the gift of memory.  I thank Him that I can remember little things that bring me comfort and joy through sadnesses. It was this week that my Dad didn't come home when he should have.  It was this week that we waited and prayed.  Then the policeman had to rustle up his courage to tell us the bad Daddy was not coming home, he went instead to his Heavenly home.

There is nothing that can prepare you for an event such as this, no matter what age you are.  I was eight years old, my sister was 10 and my brother 12.  My Mom was 31 years old and left alone with her children.  I suppose it is true that life would never be the same...and it wasn't.  The innocence of that childhood time was gone. 

I cannot say that I never got angry, because I did.  As a child, I accepted God's timing as His perfect timing.  I decided I would remember, but move on and take care of the rest of my family.  Remember is what I did.  I remembered for my sister, who found it too painful and just couldn't.  The anger part sometimes come much later, but how could it last for long when God's blessing were so abundant?

Whisker rubs, tickles on the floor.  Dad in his long combination underwear, streaking around the cabin, lighting the fire and putting out the laterns.  Fishing and hunting.  Bathing in the lake.  Snuggling close to him in front of the skidoo as we sped across the frozen lakes home again...and yes, remembering the time I fell off and Dad ran over me in my little red snowsuit!  So happy for lots of deep snow!  ha ha.  Dad had a bad back from injuries and would often sleep half on/half off the couch because he said "it's comfortable, you should try it".  Oh how much fun we had climbing into an old beater truck and "going to the dump!"  oh what treasures we could find and Dad would let us keep them!  I remember bags of little restaurant style packages of jam, peanut butter and cheez whiz from when Dad was in the hospital with a broken back.  Then how he came home with leather belts he had made us all in therapy.

Dad gave us lots of love and hugs and surprises...usually puppies or kittens he found and just had to bring home.  Some kids were afraid of my dad's big beard, but I knew how soft he really was.  I remember tears when he had to put his dog down.  My Dad loved Christmas and surprising us, he even got on the roof to stomp around with bells like Santa...too bad my brother ruined that surprise!  It was so much fun digging in his pockets for peppermints when he quit smoking...although it was hard to sneak one without getting a whisker rub first.

He was a great cook...lots of pepper on his eggs and lots of ways to fry up meat...salt and pepper and lots of up kids!

How sweet it is to have beautiful memories of my short eight years with my Dad Allen, but even sweeter the promise of meeting again in Heaven.  My Dad found a peace that he couldn't explain when he understood what Jesus had done for him...and how suiting that my Dad died at the same age as his Jesus...33.

How thankful I am for all those who stopped their lives when our stopped...who brought food and paid bills secretly for us.  Who prayed for us and the teachers who understood when a little girl quietly sobbed in class.  For teachers who prayed us through and always showed love.  How thankful I am to that little Mennonite church/school who wrapped their protective arms around our family so we could heal. 

God's healing and love is so perfect.  There is no description for it.  But once you have felt it, you know.

Adversity can distress us or bless us

The way we use adversity
is strictly our own choice,
For in God's Hands adversity
can make the heart rejoice ~
For everything God sends to us,
no matter in what form,
Is sent with plan and purpose...
for by the fierceness of a storm
The atmosphere is changed and cleared
and the earth is washed and clean
and the "high winds of adversity"
can make restless souls serene ~
and while it's very difficult
for makind to understand
God's intentions and His purpose
and the workings of His hand,
If we observe the miracles
that happen every day
We cannot help but be convinced
that in His wondrous way
God makes what seemed unbearable
and painful and distressing,
easily acceptable
when we view it as a blessing.
Helen Steiner Rice

Allen Edwin Imbery
Oct. 1950 to Nov. 1983

Saturday, November 14, 2009

A country bicycle ride

It was the last day Gregg would be home for 2 weeks, so the girls wanted to go for a bicycle ride.  Out came our bikes and we were off!  You may want to know that this is in November, thus the outerwear!

Mei is still using trainingwheels (thanks Uncle Troy for spending hours fitting them on!) but they hardly touch the ground anymore.  The one detriment of ranch roads is the cattle have two options...pick up speed and fly across, or stop and walk your bike over.

Ruth decided this was scarier, so she opted to fly across the rest.  Mei's training wheels don't allow for that, so rather than risking some broken bones, we drag her bike across.

The "neigbours" dog, Meka, a cousin or sister to my Dad's dog was very excited to have some entertainment.  Mei and I had turned back earlier, so we stopped for a peppermint break (see the pink one in her mouth) and to give Meka some attention.  Bad dog wouldn't go home...hummm wonder why?

We took a lot of video, but I don't know if I can upload that kind of stuff.
We were very proud of our girls, going up and down a fairly large gravel hill, mastering using the brakes, etc was a big thing for Mei.  Next summer we see ourselves doing a lot of this kind of thing.  Nice when the kids are all at an age where this sort of thing is possible without a "baby".  Our life has definately moved onto another stage, and it is a good thing.  We will have so much more time to spend doing family activities before our oldest leaves the nest...yikes!  It was sad to leave the baby phase, then the toddler, but never sad to leave the diaper phase!  ha ha

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

The most wonderful dream!!!

You know the dreams where you just never want to wake up?  The kind that give you an overwhelming feeling of love, peace, joy and happiness?  I HAD ONE!  I do not get these often, most often I am saving the world and wake up so tired.

Last night...

My dream included my three daughters, so that was a bonus.  BUT I was getting married.  The part of my brain that was still making sense, thought "oh no, Gregg is dead"...but NO, he was my bridegroom!  I was marrying my beloved all over again.  Gregg had given me cash to go and purchase a wedding dress, get my hair, nails, everything done!  I was so excited! I was in a huge huge glamorous "mall" with fancy shops full of beautiful gowns.  And I would get to try them on!  One dear friend, Stepf, flew quickly to wherever I was and helped girls were there occassionally and helping their Mommy get beautiful.  I tried on a brillant deep blue gown, then a deep rich red one, and a white one with a little black edging on it....oh they were so beautiful...I can hear the rich fabric rustling in my head as I type!

I woke up feeling very special, very precious, very loved and almost feel healed....
God is good.

Today 15 years ago, my beloved asked me to be his own...and I say YES YES YES .... forever YES!

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

What is Real Life?

I am sitting around today.  My head is hurting.  My lips are cracking, perhaps swollen and feeling like sandpaper.  My right side of my neck is painful and swollen as well.  At least my tummy doesn't feel like returning it's food.  I am thinking about little bits of life in general...little bits, here and there.  In no peticular order.
1.  I want to start cutting out that quilt for wee Alex, but it's so hard to commit to a pattern.  Decide to make a deadline of it today.

2. Christmas presents for cute neices and nephews.  I now have 4 nephews, 5 neices and one ? on it's way.  So I am looking at what was bought for the younger ones ... thinking, "will their parents approve?"  "was this a waste of money?"  "will they just throw it away?"   I've decided to give it because we wanted to give it, and they can do as they please with it, and I'll try my hardest to be OK with that.  They are cute kids.

3.  Where oh where to go and stay and play and have fun on a family vacation to the Pacific Coast of BC?  Search around on google for way too long, now my eyes are tired, my head aches more, and I have lots of info, with no decisions made.  At least I have more info.  Think about learning styles:  how much my learning style NEEDS information to make a decision, but has a hard time making decisions because we always think we just may have missed something that would have been EVEN BETTER!!!
Decide, I need to relax.

4.  Going to make meatballs tonight.  That will be yummy.  Decide that is a good decision.  Girls will love me.

5.  Wonder why humanities tendancies are to make everything look better than it may be?  Why do we franctically run around cleaning up when someone drives into the yard unannounced?  Why do we post only the pictures where our behind's don't look fat.  Why do we want to see the ones where someone else's behind looks fat?  Just to make ourselves feel better about what?  Decide this is so dumb.  I'm not buying into it.  My house is the way it is.  Because I am the way I am.  I will make you tea, make you cookies or muffins and we will sit and chat and perhaps fold that laundry or dry those dishes.  Then we'll continue to enjoy our moments together.
Decide: my goal is to make my blog to be more real-to-life.  Life does have extreme UPS and Down's and everything inbetween.

Today I am inbetween.  I am still in my pj's...waiting for 2 little bathing beauties to exit the bathtub so I can get in myself.  My head hurts, I will drink more tea and apply more lip moisturizer.  That is real life. Today. For me.

Saturday, November 07, 2009

Ruth's Giraffeeee goes a hiking!

As we meandered down the trail, we came upon this adorable Giraffee, in Pooh's Thoughtful Spot...

" What a lovely day for a little paddle down the river..." said he

Friday, October 23, 2009


Standing on top of the world

My first born found her way to the top of the waterfall at Crater Lake.  I sigh, knowing that like the water trickling over the waterfall, so are my moments with her.  She is growing up and I am unprepared.

Better late than never?

I am wondering if I will continue with my blog. I actually just remembered I had it and have quite enjoyed a walk down memory lane reading my old posts. Can't believe so much has changed in my little world.

We now live in BC. On the same ranch yard as my folks. In an old log cabin type house with a wood stove and horses outside to mow my "lawn".
We are homeschooling all 3 girls, grades 1, 3 and 7.
I now am Auntie to 4 nephews, 5 neices and one more ? on the way in January.
My hubby no longer works at a hospital, but does construction/renovations in Calgary with his father.
I do not have a church.
We get mail deliver on Monday, Weds, and Friday.
We have 25 laying hens.

Life is definately changed as I knew it. Doesn't mean it is bad, just means it is different and takes some adjusting. I love having time to read all those books I had wanted to. Being able to spend endless hours with my girls is so precious. Smelling the fresh air and watching them run around makes my heart swell.

A cheery outlook is always welcome.