Wednesday, October 29, 2014

I'm sorry

I wrote something hurtful about you a few years ago on this blog. I deleted it but not before you read it. I had forgotten that I ever wrote it when I gave you this link and was horrified when I saw that you'd found that particular post. 

Truth is I was still hurt and angry when I wrote it even though many years had passed and I was happy with how things turned out in the end. But yeah still hurt about how it ended. 

When you left you took my lover away yes, but I also lost my best friend and while I forgave the first, it took a lot longer to forgive the second.  

So I wrote that stupid post where I said something hurtful that wasn't even true and then when I had moved on and wanted to invite you back into my life in some small way, I inadvertently led you straight to the words that would ensure you never would. And I'm sorry Jim because I would have liked my friend back. 

I know you'll never read this but since I put the bad thing out there for the whole world to see, seems only fair to come clean about my being a big jerk to everyone as well. 

I'm sorry. You were perfect and I was a jerk. 

I wish you nothing but happiness. 

Julie

Sunday, October 19, 2014

Family Business

Well I started working for/with my husband this week. He and his two brothers own a business along with a fourth partner. Eventually I will be taking some work from g's plate and some from his brother's as well, but for now I'm helping getting the latest production run out of the door. 

Because I don't really know all that much about the business yet, I'm mostly doing repetitive stuff like paper folding and counting parts. It's mindless easy but boring stuff but if I can take if off someone else's plate that helps g a lot and I actually got my husband home at a decent time every day last week that I worked so it's totally worth it. 

I know I'll be doing more later but for now this is good enough. 

Sarah got her first report card and is doing well. She has two As a B and a C. She had a B in math before the last test but that didn't go well so she's down to a C. I'm confident that she'll be back to a B before the class ends.

Chloe had some issues with her face (bells palsy) but it is clearing up nicely. I haven't gotten her report card yet but the first one is just a progress report and not terribly helpful. 

I have finished the majority of my Christmas shopping and need to get started on our family calendar. Still so many other things to get done as well. The next two weeks are going to be crazy. Wish me luck!!!

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

What a month!

Well September has been quite eventful to say the least.  When I started this month we had just returned from our long awaited family cruise and were gearing up for a new school year.  Gunther and I were about to celebrate 14 years of marriage and Sarah was about to begin high school.

This month saw family birthdays, my parents 50th wedding anniversary, an impromptu weekend trip to the cottage, and, perhaps the most surprising, the end of my current job.

I honestly had no idea that I would only have single digit number of days left as a CSR when the month began.  Sometimes things just move so quickly and fall into place in the strangest of ways.

Turns out I'm needed elsewhere and I will be joining my husband, his brothers and their other business partner to assist in their company.  I'm not worried about being with G all the time.  I was raised in a family business and G and I were together 24/7 for the first half of our marriage without any complications.

So yeah, big changes.  And last night I signed Sarah up for a 1 week school excursion just to finish the month off with the bang.  Did I mention that the excursion was to Madrid Spain and Paris France?  So Sarah will be following in her globe trotting cousins' footsteps it seems.  I'm very excited for her.

In other news I've completed 50% of my Christmas shopping.  I know I know, but I won't go near the mall in December and well, I have a steady and good income now.  I'm not sure how things will pan out at G's work as I may only be needed part-time there.  It made sense to get it done early and my girls are easy to shop for.  Other than them there's not much to buy as most of my nieces and nephews prefer cash and I have already told my family that we won't be exchanging with the adults anymore.

I was able to stick pretty close to my budget so far and that pleases me.  First year I've actually set a limit. 

Anyhow, that's what's new with us.  I wonder what chances October will bring?

Sunday, September 14, 2014

This, That, and the other Stuff

It's been a while since my last blog.  Chloe is adapting well to school.  Sarah is as well though more reluctantly and more slowly.  Things for both Gunther and I are hella-crazy at work so it's been a busy few weeks.

We've had a plethora of celebrations this month - my sister-in-law's birthday, my parents 50th wedding anniversary BBQ, my nephew's birthday this weekend and a family BBQ coming up next weekend.  Busy daze.

The girls have started archery lessons -- well Chloe has.  Sarah's class got rained out and cancelled so she'll start next week.  Chloe will start a crafting program next week and Sarah will start a drawing course the week after.  I also need to get both girls back into Tae Kwon Do as Sarah hasn't stepped foot in the dojo since June and Chloe hasn't been since her week at camp.  That and I'd like for us to go swimming once a week as a family.  We'll see how that works out.

With all this to and fro and the late hours at work and the homework for the girls, the house is suffering.  I wish I was better at keeping it clean and it didn't always seem to be a monumental undertaking but even just staying on top of the kitchen these days seems beyond my powers.  Definitely time to try to figure something else out as our current system of "do the bare minimum and hope someone else takes it upon themselves to do the rest" isn't working out so well.  Oh well.

Things at work have changed for me.  I now get benefits (hooray) but lost my contract bonus (booo!) so we can go ahead with getting Chloe's braces started but have had to make some serious calls about spending and budget.  We foresee things getting worse in the next few months as well so belt tightening is a must.  I've let both extended families know how our gift-giving will be affected and nobody's said boo about it, but I still kind of feel like the Grinch that stole Christmas.

Course this is compounded by the house falling apart around us.  Both tubs leak -- mine is completely unusable, the kitchen is falling apart and the dishwasher is seriously crippled, the window install still isn't finished (this is G's fault) and there is lumber lying in all the rooms and a saw in my kitchen.  There are cracks that need to be fixed in the basement and oh-so-many other little things that need attention.  $$ $$ $$ -- and something we seem to have even less of -- time.  Oh well.

Add to this some physical discomfort this week -- muscle pain and an ingrown toenail -- and watching yet another of my coworkers leave and I'm feeling a bit (o.k. a lot) down in the dumps.  But as they say.. this too shall pass.

I have no real complaints and for that I am grateful.  Life goes on and overall it's a good life.

Not much of a blog I guess but there you have it.

Best,

Julie

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Back to School -- The Crazy Pills Edition



My girls have gone back to school.  Chloe is 10 years old and in grade 5, Sarah is 13 and in grade 9 -- High School.

And yet, and here is where I'm going all Mugatu, our school systems insists on treating them like babies.

To wit, Chloe's teacher sent home a Communication Letter informing me that I am to sign off her agenda every night.  She will write down her homework from the homework board and the French teachers will circle either the happy face of the sad face to indicate whether she was willingly speaking French today or not.

That's right, I'm to confirm that my child has done her assigned homework AND acknowledge that she has been good or naughty every.single.day.  Did I mention that she's 10?  Did I mention that she is in grade 5?  That's right, grade 5.  She dresses herself, brushes her own teeth and hair, showers and wears deodorant, she walks to and from the bus stop by herself, makes her own lunch and fills her own water bottle, packs her own backpack and yes, for the most part.. does her own homework.

Now I have no objection with signing progress reports, I don't balk at signing tests and report cards and I will acknowledge letters sent home with a written response, but I will not, repeat NOT sign a non-special needs 10 year old girl's agenda daily.

Not gonna happen.

But least you think that maybe this a one off thing, let me walk you through yesterday.  Yesterday was Sarah's first day of High School.  Only it wasn't really a real day because only grade 9s were invited to attend least the precious snowflakes get too overwhelmed with having to share the school with their peers.  And just to make sure they didn't get lost in the school, parents were invited to join their lovely children for the morning to help them find their classrooms and meet their new teachers.  Grade 9.  I'm not shitting you.

We were then invited to attend a parenting seminar.  I chose to get my ass to work instead.

But that's not even all.  Turns out that my school system has set up a website where I can monitor my children's grades 24/7 -- no more waiting for them to bring tests home or read report cards no no no.. I can invade my children's classroom with just a userid and shared password so that they can have Mommy and Daddy riding their asses about their grades as soon as they happen. 

Isn't modern parenting grand?

Monday, September 1, 2014

Cruising Carnival Breeze for The Plus Sized Passenger

I am a large woman.  I wear a 4X and am 5'5" and shaped like a pear so I have an ample tummy and behind.  This means that I don't fit in a lot of places other people do.

When I first booked our family vacation on Canival Breeze back in March, I figured I had plenty of time to get thinner.  I didn't.  So it was with some fear and trepidation that I boarded my American Airlines flight (thank God they didn't make me buy a second seat!) to Miami last weekend.

Let me also say that I had taken certain precautions by locating a super plus sized life jacket.  You see we had booked excursions - para-sailing, glass bottom boat and dolphin encounter -- and I wanted to be able to join in.  I was too nervous about the para-sailing so just booked myself in as a rider but even so, I worried that their not having suitable life jackets for me might stop me from joining the rest of my family so I lugged that giant Canadian Tire life jacket with me just in case.

I don't know about other Cruise lines, but let me tell you if you're stumbled across this blog because you are obese and worried about cruising, you can rest easy aboard the Carnival Breeze.

First off, the bathrooms.  Yes the toilet is bolted to the wall instead of mounted on the floor but it is very securely mounted with no cracked caulking or scary creaking noise when you sit down.  Trust me this is a very big deal when you're a bigger person.  The showers are big enough and there are two in the cabin so if you're not agile enough to climb over the tub rim (second shower) you can still use the other shower which barely has a lip.  Also the shower heads can be used as hand-helds so you're sure to get access to all the places you will need to rinse.

As for dining, the dining room chairs are armless both in the main dining room and on the lido deck. There are some wicker chairs that were a bit tighter of a fit but those were on the least used deck and were still comfortable enough.  Plus there were other chairs on that deck that were more accessible.  A lot of the meals we ate on the Lido deck where you line up buffet style but if you find standing difficult you can also get free room service and/or eat main mails in the dining room where they will serve you.

Our bed was comfortable and plenty wide enough for myself and my normal sized husband.  The room while cramped (it is a ship after all) was definitely roomy enough for the 4 of us though only one of us could be in the hallway at a time.

As for the excursions, I needn't have worried.  All of the trips we took had large enough life jackets for me and while I chose not to para-sail, I probably could have gone had I wanted to.

Finally for the entertainment, the room where the shows were held had both theater seating and bench seating so people of various sizes could sit comfortably.  Also there were plenty of elevators at our disposal so never a need to use the stairs if those are problematic.

The only time where size could have been an issue was waiting in lines (to check in, to go into ports, to come back aboard, to disembark.)  If you fear these will be problematic then I urge you to contact Guest Services and they will help you out.

Oh I forgot to mention, G and I also got couples massages and there was no issue with me getting up on to the massage table or worrying about it collapsing beneath me.

So if you're plus-sized and worried about Cruising, don't be.  And I hope your trip is as wonderful as mine was.

Bon Voyage!