Monday, March 30, 2009

Letting go...

It is time for me to let go. Time for me to sort through the closets, and collect up the baby gear, big ticket items, and other items. It hurts to see the baby items in the closet. I have been holding onto these items in hopes that my family can use them. But, really I have to let them go. I am going to wait until my cousin has her baby in June to see whether she has a boy or a girl. Once I know, I am letting go. I will of course offer the items to my family and friends, but I will not hold onto them any longer than necessary. 

It has to be done. Just like the breastfeeding is done? I will do a post on that later...

I think in order for me to move on, and watch the kids grow and become little people etc. I have to let the baby stuff go. Every time I open up their closet, I feel these feeling like should we have a 7th. Other people are having babies at my age. Have we made the right decision? Of course we have made the right decision. I have my body pretty much back and then some, (some parts not so much, but hey I have worked as hard as I COULD) and soon, very soon I would think Caroline will be out of her diapers. Her third birthday is just around the corner. I have my fourth entering Kindergarten. And Courtney, assists me when I get her dressed. She listens to simple requests and does them. She is growing up, and is fun. And it is really nice not to have a crying baby around me, or sitting around breastfeeding watching life happen as I sit on the couch and feel frustrated.  In fact I can now look at babies and say, aaahhh cute. And that is enough. Funny how that happens. 

My family has been really interesting with my growing children. Usually at this stage of the game I would be almost due with the next child. This time, nope. But we are finding interesting ways to fill our extra time now. 

 I don't ache as much anymore. I am excited to watch the kids grow.

Yesterday, a family trip to the pool. With help...lots of help! Six adults, and eight kids. It was a lot of work, but a lot of fun. Lots to look forward too. 

Monday, March 23, 2009

Various photos | camera phone

Catie, can you sleep with ANYTHING more on your bed each night?!

A gift from Aunty Amy and Uncle Tyler for her birthday (belated new boots!) She slept in them the whole night!

We found Courtney in Caroline's new big girl bed and she was just cozied all up 'reading' her book. She tries so hard to be the big girl (even though she is only 16 months old) We love how she tries VERY hard!! 

On another errand run (Do we have to go? I don't want to go...I want to stay home...grumbles...whining etc.) and here is one of Caroline's fabulous 2 year old pouty faces! And Cameron with his 'DS eyes' like blahhhhh this is all I like to do these days because I am almost 10.

Claire the Rocker!

Original Video - More videos at TinyPic

This is how we keep the kids having fun in the van when we drive around and do our errands. Sorry it is sideways, but I had to share. I will have to record it again when the rest of the kids join in! Can you tell they are kids of parents who grew up in the 80's/90's! :P

Happy Monday!


Sunday, March 22, 2009

OMG 32!

Seriously, that is the name of our run this morning. The 32 km - OMG Run (20 mile run)  It was quite the run! The sunshine was out, it was about 10 degrees. Warm, sunny and a happy run with my wonderful marathon group. That is my longest run to date. And come marathon time, we will add another 10 ish kms to the run. The full length is 42.2 km (or 26.2 miles for my American friends ;D )

We ran for 3 hours and 18 minutes, and I felt pretty darn good. Except for my knees and hips that started to ache around the 23 km mark. I pushed through, stretched out. And all was well. I feel very happy with today. Next Sunday a 'recovery' run of 23 km. The following a 29 km, and then one more 32 km. Then the TAPER runs begin. I am six weeks to the marathon. It is going to be something else, and I cannot wait to reach that GOAL! FINALLY! I have been patient and I have waited to get to this point. And now, my training will get me there. And my willpower to see me through those final 1o km. 

I am relaxed, and tired. And proud. What a great morning. 11 years ago, I would have never seen this as a possibility. Newly married, pregnant with my first. Never. And now, over a decade later, six kids and here I am. The will to run is strong! I have this desire to compete like never before. Only to prove to MYSELF that I am able. So cool. I am already planning my next marathon in October...

Friday, March 20, 2009

Happy Friday, Happy Spring!

Wow, it sure doesn't look like spring around here. It is cold and raining, but I am just happy that WINTER is OVER!

The signs of spring are budding all over the place, and our lawn is really green! (Thank you rain!)

Have a great day!

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Middle of the Week

The three big kids are at day camp today. I have my three littles at home. Nice quiet time, except for the usual stuff. Like getting into the taps/containers and water. Every one of my kids have gone through the stage of filling up cheese packages, containers and baggies with water. It is Caroline's turn...and Coco is learning a lot from her siblings. She doesn't have to say anything. She grunts (both fingers in her mouth) and points. She gets whatever she desires. Now that Courtney is over 16 months she sure is developing THE BEST personality! She is smiley, she makes us laugh. And she tries to sing a long to the DVD of 'Mama Mia' when the kids watch it OVER and OVER and OVER. I know we already have another dancing queen! It is really cute actually. The fun part is when all of the 'big girls' meaning Claire, Carly and Catie (and sometimes Caroline) stand on the ottoman, and jump off just like the women do in the DVD into the water. I love how their sense of fun and adventure is developing. Watching them all grow up is fascinating and lovely. 

Claire passed a swim test yesterday at swim camp, and now is able to swim in the pool without a life jacket (no lessons, just self learner--except for the lessons when she was really little) makes us so proud. She offers to help us in the kitchen. She tells us she is going to be a Baker. We tell her to go for it! 

Carly, is almost out of a life jacket! She really wants to learn so that she can get out and swim too! We love how hard she tries. And we love how gentle she can be with the little ones.

Cameron, he is swimming like a fish too. He was doing this last year already. He cannot wait until August! Either can we. He loves hanging out with his best girl J. They are so cute together. He spends a LOT of time there. They say they will get married, so you'd both better wait until you are 25 at least LOL. Cameron also gets along very well with Catie. They do so nicely together. I love seeing that brother sister bond develop. 

Catie, well she thinks she is going to high school in September! (maybe too much High School Musical?!) we keep telling her, no KINDERGARTEN. LOL. She cannot WAIT to turn 5 this September. She is so small still that she can fit into the back basket on our double stroller. She loves to hide, and get into things! 

Caroline, still in her diapers. Can totally go to the toilet, but won't. She is almost three, so I just have to be patient, and I KNOW she will do it on her own time. She also still is the loudest of all of the kids. She also has the best pouty face I have EVER seen. I will have to post a photo! She also has transitioned to her big girl bed with not a problem. We are so proud of her.

Coco, our dear little Courtney. She tries so hard to be a big girl. She is practically walking down the stairs on her own. She climbs, she gets into our cabinets. She can grab knives off the top of the island already (oh dear!) like I say she grunts a lot. She plays well with the others. The others help her a lot. Sometimes good, sometimes not so good. She gets carried around a lot. They take off her footwear. They take her sippy cups and drink her stuff. They take her food. They love her very much. She is very drawn to her big brother Cameron. I often find her on her Daddy's old rocking chair in their room 'reading' books quietly.  She often brings books to me with a grunt and we 'read' together. 

Anyways, life has been crazy busy. At times I feel like I am flying by the seat of my pants...pulled like crazy in every direction. Our house is very loud, to the point where sometimes our ears crackle at of the noise, and the screams. Cliff and I barely have a moment to ourselves. It has been a time of transition for us. It gets easier in some ways, and in other ways much more difficult. We do do do do do do do. And do some more. Life with six kids. 

I feel bad for not connecting even with my own family, and with my friends who I feel like I have deserted, and not kept in touch with. Phone calls are difficult because of the noise factor. And of course at night the last thing I really want to do is talk. I am thankful for twitter, Facebook and email for re-connecting with family and friends. And even then, it is hard to keep up with all of our demands. I often have guilt about not spending more time with my family. But as I have aged, I realize too that I have a family and I need to direct my attention on them more. I am trying not to feel guilty, and just seek balance in my life. Stay positive, keep smiling and keep moving forward as I get nearer and nearer to that next decade. Seeing my FIL pass away early makes me want to take life by the horns and go for everything! Not live a life of fear, which is how I think I lived for many years. I am taking steps to get past my fear, and just focus on trying new things. Stepping out of my comfort zone, and just being me. The authentic Cathy.

I am thankful that I can maintain for the most part a happy disposition, that I can laugh when times are stressful, I can run when I want to get away. Thankful for this time in my life. I know it will always be busy, but there are so many interesting things going on right now. My life is very colourful and full. Like restaurant service. I am much more productive when I am really busy. And when it slows down, I become slow and not as productive. As I have said before I would rather be very busy, than very bored. As I tell my kids a lot, boring is as boring does! Get interested in SOMETHING and go for it!

My life is full of laughter, crazy times, loud kids, whispers, inside jokes, taps on the legs, twists of my hair. Laundry, picking up stuff. Kissing owies, kisses, and hugs. I feel very fortunate to have this life that I have.

I am also thankful for the man behind the scenes Cliff, who helps me become the person I want to become. He is always there in the shadows. I often get asked, how do you do it all. And believe me, I am no super mom. Seriously. I have a very modern, supportive husband. He cooks, he changes diapers, he bathes kids, he cleans, he takes the kids out when I have shoots, he cleans toilets and mops. He loves us like nobody can. And that is how I do it. He believes in me, and for that I am grateful. 

My crazy amazing life! Who knew life could be this exciting. Truly there are so many facets to life that I am just beginning to realize. So many opening doors, and I have to think which one to open first! 

I have been training hard for my marathon, and lately I have been running a lot. I am busy with my fitness pretty much every day. I feel better when I exercise. Exercise to me is mandatory. I am happier, and that makes for a happy family. It is my time to release the stresses of the days and weeks. Helps me to cope better. I think about what I want to work on next, or solve my life problems when I am exercising. I am about 8 weeks from the race. This Sunday I will run 32 kms. The longest run ever for me. I am so excited! 

Sunday, March 15, 2009

Scared | Road Rage

It is times like these, that make me scared. We were travelling in our big van, going to get me a snack after running my 29 km run this morning. I ran for 3 hours and I was really hungry. So, Cliff was driving, and a big black van was really tailgating us. So, Cliff tried to switch lanes, he was closer. He motioned for the guy to move over, take the lane. He got closer. Cliff was swerving, to the left, to the right. Road rage. It was scary. Guy pulled over, on another street. We kept driving, heading to get some gas before treats. Van follows us into the Safeway parking lot. I yelled at Cliff get in the van! he is here!! He was looking for our van. And us driving a big passenger van, really makes us stand out! So, quickly, without gas off we go. Low tank of gas. Very low. Another reason to keep your tank full. We drove, to stay away. He turned, we turned the other way. We started to get a little scared. I had my cell phone in hand (another good reason for a cell phone) ready to dial 911. I was feeling threatened, and we were all getting scared. All of my most precious cargo on board. My family.

We kept driving. We took the back route back home. And as we headed towards the RCMP shop, there was the black van. In the round about. Cliff got a good look at him, but not the license plate. I couldn't read it either. It pays to pay attention. We went straight, right up the road to the RCMP. Black van went straight through the round about. We parked there looking. Wondering. It was over (so it seemed)

Most likely a misunderstanding? Cliff was doing nothing wrong. We were driving, Cliff tried to move the van out of the way. That is all. Man in van, takes it the wrong way? Was he trying to harm us? Scare us? Just nothing? I am not sure. All I know is that I felt that we were in danger. So did we all really. My Momma powers kicked in. I was scared, and strong. Thankfully nothing. Danger? Possible danger averted? Hands shaking. Legs quivering.

Kids all scared. We calmed them down. Cliff calmed me down. He peeled me off of the roof so to speak. All I know, is that we handled it the best way we could today. And when we reached to safety and comfort of home. We hugged, and I handed out hugs to my family. I told my kids I loved them. Extra hugs, and reassurance for the kids who now fear black vans. (And me too really) You just never know. 

Especially here in BC. Shootings everywhere, almost every day. Not like the days when I grew up. Yesterday in the city, another fatality. The same city we drove through today.

Moral of this story: I take nothing for granted.

Today, taught me that only my family is important, and every day is a gift. You never know when that might change.

So seriously, go hug your family. 

Friday, March 13, 2009

One heck of a week

This week has been a very crazy one. All weeks around here are crazy, but this one really just wore me down. 

I am just glad that Friday is here. I mean, the weekends are crazy too. Thankfully Cliff is around though. I have a shoot tomorrow, and I have a huge run on Sunday morning. Another 29 k'er. Those are exhausting, and so I have to just deal.

Anyways! I wish you all a Happy Friday!


Wednesday, March 11, 2009

I don't feel like myself

I seriously don't feel like myself with my dark hair. Why oh why do I do this?! I just want to go back and get my blonde back, but after spending WAY too much to get it this way I just will have to wait. I even asked my kids and they said I look better with my light hair. I think that blondes have more fun (well atleast me anyways!) I think I look older like this. I don't know.

Anyways, tonight I am off to hill training. Eight blasted hills! Long HILLS! So, I need to prepare for that!

Sunday, March 08, 2009

I forgot...

I forgot to SPRING FORWARD this morning, and then I missed my running group. This morning was a 29 km run. So, I came home changed all of the clocks. Pouted for a bit. Cried a bit, then I gathered my stuff and headed out of the door. I ran 31 km today. My run took me 3 hours, and 17 minutes. But I did it. All by my lonesome. I know I will be ready for next weeks 32. If I could run today, under crazy circumstances, hills and obstacles. I will be able to run the 42.2 km May 3rd. Without a doubt. This run today made me stronger!

Thursday, March 05, 2009

Cathy | Self Portrait

Here is a self portrait assignment I was working on today. 
It is hard to shoot self portraits especially with my very short arms! 
We submitted them in black and white, but I still prefer  the colour version. 

I hope you all are having a sunny, beautiful day! Even if it has to be in your mind.

Cathy xo

Out of TV Land

Sorry, these published backwards! So, did you see it? 

Meet Fiona Forbes on my right, and Michael Eckford on my left! They were just as charming, funny and down to earth as on their show Urban Rush! They made me feel completely comfortable and at ease! is your turn! I was waiting to sit down on the familiar to me yellow Urban Rush couch! My segment was about 7 ish minutes, and it went by REALLY fast!

Really cool to have a couple of 'Smart Cookies' in the greenroom. Remember Carly filmed a little segment for them, well Sandra (the Savvy Spender!)  was her host. Small world. So, I re-inroduced myself to her, and I asked her for a photo op! Why not, it is not very often you get to meet somebody who has graced Oprah's stage! Wow! The other smart cookie was Robyn (the Cash Councilor) she was in make up. SO awesome to be on the same show!

And of course, me with that darn slate! I stressed for days over this thing! So, I figured it out. I even got to pick which colour I wanted. I chose pink of course. Oh, if you are wondering why Cameron was not in school, well we decided to give him some 'life experience' instead of school. Are we the coolest parents Ever?! LOL. He had a great time, eating something like four pastries/cookies off the greenroom table! He met Michael, Fiona, and the Smart Cookies too!


I am back, no wait...I have been back since Tuesday, and today (well late yesterday evening) between bites of my Subway sandwich tonigh I downloaded my photos from my trip to the Shaw Studios/Urban Rush set. I have been busy with my marathon training program too. Last night 7 km steady, tonight 7 big bad hills and about 13 km later we were done! Whew. Next week 8! Anyways...sorry to side track like that. It has just been so crazy!

It was a wonderful experience, and I made some pretty wonderful people. Here are couple from that surreal day! 

Cathy xo

Monday, March 02, 2009

Cathy | Into the TV tomorrow

As my kids say, I am going into the TV tomorrow. 

It is true, although I will be ON TV tomorrow. Yes, I was invited to be a guest on the local TV show called  'Urban Rush' (based in Vancouver, BC Canada.)

I cannot believe that I will be seated on a couch across from Fiona Forbes and Michael Eckford talking about my boudoir photography! Talk about surreal! Unreal!

I am so excited, and so nervous!

The details are posted here, if you are in the Vancouver area and want to watch me.

I will try to update a bit tomorrow sometime!

Cathy xo