January/February Update (a.k.a., I’m still alive)

January was probably the longest month ever and I accidentally disappeared from the blog aside from book reviews. Apparently those are easier to type up than life updates?

Between January being 79 days long and being super busy with life, I finally have a moment to post a life update from the beginning of 2020 today. Hurray for long weekends! I’ll break everything down into categories so I don’t forget anything …

The Girls

Norah took a month-long break from preschool in January because her part-time program was cancelled due to a lack of enrolment. She returned earlier this month to a full-time program (more on that later) and she’s doing really well! Isla got her first report card of the year back and she’s turning out to be quite the student! Kyle and I are both super proud of them both; even though they’re so different they are both striving.

Norah is all registered for kindergarten starting in the fall, so there’s a lot of emotions surrounding that! I still can’t believe she’ll be 5 in a few short months and that she’s off to school with her sister in September! Where did the time go?! Really though, she’s SO ready and SO excited to finally be going to the same school as Isla; she’s been waiting for this day since Isla started kindie, so it’s been a long time coming!

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Isla and Norah both started swimming lessons at the beginning of January! Norah was going 2x week and finished up after four weeks, and she did amazing! To be honest, I wasn’t 100% sure she was going to pass because she has a lot of energy and just wanted to swim around, but after a few reminders to listen she did awesome and got her badge. Isla’s lessons are only once a week, so we have a couple more to go before she’s done, but so far she’s looking strong.

This past weekend Kyle worked overtime one day, so we spent the day hanging out – we went and did the grocery shopping, and then after lunch we saw a movie (Dolittle) and went out and had sushi for dinner! It was a lot of fun and while they drive me crazy sometimes, it was nice to spend some quality time with just the two of them.

The Dogs

Campbell and Lars are … Campbell and Lars! Lars is growing like a weed and probably needs more exercise, which will be remedied soon as he’s going to go off to bootcamp within the next couple of weeks.

They are still getting along so well and Campbell is such a patient older brother to Lars, haha.

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Back in October I had mentioned briefly that Lars was suffering from a bit of a limp, and after Kyle and I had it checked out by two vets (the original appointment and a 2nd opinion), it turns out that he blew out his ACL somehow. (Likely playing too hard with Campbell.) We had the option to send him for surgery, but with him being so young it may or may not have worked, plus he’d need more in the future. (Read: $$$$) We opted to make him lay low and see how it healed on its own, and while he can’t put 100% of his body weight on it, you’d never think he’s injured. Lars is very much a typical Labrador retriever and acts like a doofus

Running

I took a solid bit of time off between the last race I ran and February, aside from a Mile-a-Day challenge I did in December. Race season is starting back up in a month or so, so I need to get my butt in gear! I’m hoping to conquer more 10K distances, even on the trails, so we’ll see how it goes! My shoes are two years old now, so I may or may not treat myself to a new pair soon. I just can’t decide if I want to keep wearing my current ones for the road and get trail shoes, or just get a new pair of road shoes for everything. This is the toughest decision by far because really, I can’t afford both. (Even though I really want to!)

Life

Overall, life has been pretty amazing. Kyle and I have been working together to hash out a lot of “life’s plans” and it seems to be going well! We have some big goals for ourselves and for our family, but I think we’ll definitely be able to accomplish them if we stick to the plan and life doesn’t throw us too many curveballs. (Because there’s always curveballs!)

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Last year when I finished my Administrative Assistant certificate I said I was going to reward myself with a new tattoo, and I finally got around to it at the end of January. (I finished school at the end of June, haha.)

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In a nutshell, I got a lupin tattoo in honour of my grandparents. Once upon a time they had a cabin, and the trail to get there had crazy amounts of lupins growing wild. My brother and I used to spend a lot of time there with my grandma and grandpa, and have so many fond memories with them there. Lupins seemed like a logical choice to honour them.

Work

Oh yeah – I got a job! I didn’t really plan on going back to work until Norah had started kindergarten, but a position for a part-time administrative assistant was posted for a local business and I couldn’t help but apply. The hours were perfect to accommodate drop off and pick up from school, so why not, right?

I ended up getting a call to interview a few days after I applied, and was offered the position a few days after that! I was thankfully able to get Norah back into preschool full-time, just at a different campus (the school she was going to has four locations) and nothing else really changed.

I’ve been at the position now for two weeks and I’m really enjoying it; there’s a lot to learn and do, but I feel like it’s going well. It really fell into my life at the perfect time and it almost seems too good to be true, especially with being able to get Norah into full-time preschool right away.

So that’s pretty much what’s been going on since my last update! The days are getting longer and I’m looking forward to what the warmer weather is going to bring. (Camping! Waterslides! Races! Slo-Pitch! Pool Days!) I’ll try not to go so long between updates this time.

October Recap

Hello, November! Can you believe there’s only a couple handful of weeks left in 2019? October seemed to fly by, so here’s what we got up to!

The Girls

Norah’s preschool class got to go to the pumpkin patch right at the beginning of the month! It was pretty great being able to go with her and share the experience with her; as the girls get older I think they start to value one-on-one time with Kyle or I more. Anyway, Norah had an awesome time going on a hayride, feeding the sheep, making friends with the guardian dog (of course), and picking out her pumpkin!

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We had a couple of pretty cold days, but for the most part the weather was fairly cooperative. Isla was enjoying raking up all the leaves that had fallen, so I made it a fun after-school activity for us to do with the boy I’ve been taking care of. (Dollar Store pumpkin bags, for the win!)

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Of course, one can’t talk about October and not discuss Halloween! We carved pumpkins the weekend before Halloween and Isla insisted that she carve her pumpkin on her own and she did a pretty good job!

From L to R: Norah’s, mine, Isla’s

This year Isla and Norah decided to be Luigi and Mario, which I had thought was a pretty original idea but as it turns out, there were a lot of Mario & Luigi’s out there this year! Regardless, they had a ton of fun with all the Halloween-related festivities. It started off with dressing up for Isla’s ballet class on the 29th, then for the school Halloween dance on the 30th, and finally for trick-or-treating on Halloween!

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I couldn’t decide if I wanted to put together a costume for myself or not, but I ended up stumbling across an easy Mario-related idea on Pinterest and went for it! I think I spent just under $5 on materials, and I got a lot of thumbs up for it! (Especially from Isla and Norah, because when they “hit” the box, I was able to pull power stars and mushrooms from a hidden pouch!)

The girls had an absolute blast trick-or-treating, especially Norah! I think she proclaimed that she got candy after every house, and she didn’t want to stop going door to door even when she was exhausted. We were our for about an hour and a half and they each got a pretty good haul!

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Life

October was a fairly busy month in general, with Kyle and I doing a few home reno projects updating fixtures and such, and a few family gatherings in between.

I had a quick day-surgery right before the Thanksgiving long weekend. Nothing serious, (I’m fine, it’s fine, everything is fine!) but I’m pretty well all healed up and back to normal! (Click here if you so desire to read it, you just have to ask for the password.)

I took advantage of the pretty fall colours and warm-enough weather to take the girls’ photos for our annual Christmas cards one weekend. I don’t know how much longer I’ll be able to keep making them pose for photos every year, but as long as they’re down to sit for a few minutes, I guess I’ll still take the photos! I’m super happy with how they turned out and I’ve already ordered and received our cards. I wouldn’t say I’m on the ball, but it sure feels like it!

The Dogs

We’ve now had Lars at home with us for just over a month now and things have been going really great with him! He’s such a typical Labrador, loving everyone he meets and being a silly, goofy dog. His house training is going well and so we’re slowly moving onto other basic training skills. Kyle and I are hoping to get him into obedience school eventually to really harness Lars’ capabilities and give him an extra boost when it comes to listening.

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He and Campbell have really bonded and are enjoying each other’s company, although sometimes they play a little too hard and Cam starts throwing his weight around; Lars must’ve got too rowdy because he has a bit of a limp, perhaps from a sprain, but he has a vet appointment for his next set of puppy boosters so it will be mentioned to the vet. He doesn’t appear to be in pain, but it sucks seeing him hobble around.

I think that pretty much covers everything that went on in October for us! Keeping with the general rule, November is shaping up to be relatively busy as well, so here goes nothing!

What are some highlights from your October?!

September Recap

The first month of school is done! Did you survive? We hung in there the best we could but I think we’ve found our rhythm and are back in the groove of things.

Isla started grade 2 this year and after the first week of school she was finally placed in a classroom. (Because of a large amount of new students it took a while to shuffle everyone around.) She was happy to get the teacher she was hoping for and so far she’s really loving her classroom.

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The classroom she’s in is a grade 2/3 split, so I’m hoping she does okay. Her teacher seems wonderful and has been teaching for quite a while, so I’m confident Isla will be able to absorb everything that’s being taught with no issues.

The most exciting school-related event, however, was Norah starting preschool! She’s been dying to go to school practically since Isla started kindergarten two years ago, so when she learned that she FINALLY gets to go twice a week, she was ecstatic!

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She looks forward to going and needed no convincing that school is an exciting place to be. And she’s already learning so much! I hate comparing Isla and Norah, but Norah definitely has more “learning” to do than Isla did at this age, so preschool is definitely benefitting her a lot more.

In addition to going back to school, Isla returned to ballet classes this month and is happy to be back in the studio with her dance friends. She also started rehearsals for the Nutcracker performance that she’ll be in come November, so that’s exciting as well. Norah so far isn’t in any extracurriculars, but I’m leaning towards something like soccer or baseball come the spring. The kid needs to MOOOOVE so I think a sport would be better for her than something as structured as dance or gymnastics.

Of course, there was also the Dirty Feet trail race I ran near the beginning of the month. My legs took a solid week to recover but I think they’re back to normal now ;) I’m not sure what my next race will be – I haven’t even ran since then – so whenever I find the time/energy to do that we’ll go from there.

Kyle and I also got in a dinner and a movie just this past weekend! My mom had the girls over for a sleepover, so we got to go out for dinner and then we headed to the theatre with a friend to watch Rambo: Last Blood! The movie was everything I expected it to be, and then some, so I give it two solid Bowie Knives up, lol.

September, unfortunately, wasn’t entirely celebrations and excitement. Near the end of August we learned that Sam, our German Shepherd, was suffering from a pancreatic disease called E.P.I.. Generally, it’s more common for older dogs to contract the disease, so Sam’s case was highly unusual, but it explained why he was so skinny and not gaining any weight. Sadly, the medication to help his pancreas regulate his food digestion was a cost that was unexpected and something that we wouldn’t be able to maintain, especially on top of the semi-annual bloodwork he’d need. After a long discussion with the breeder we received Sam from, we decided that it would be best for Sam to go back to her. It was something that definitely wasn’t an easy thing to do, and I still miss him terribly, but I know he’s getting the care he needs by someone who can afford to do so.

The girls handled his departure extremely well (me, not so much), and I’m so ridiculously proud of both of them for being so grown up about the situation.

All that being said, we didn’t want to remain a one-dog house for too long, so Kyle and I began the search for another puppy. We had many discussions over what kind of dog to get – we thought about another shepherd but were still in shock from Sam’s issues – so we opted for a “Good Ol’ Labrador retriever.” We searched the mighty Internet high and low and eventually stumbled across a litter that was ready to go, so one sunny, Saturday morning we dropped the girls off at my mom’s and the rest is history …

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Meet Lars! He’s the chillest little chonkster and the girls are so happy to have a puppy in their lives again. I’m pretty smitten too, potty accidents aside, lol. And Campbell loves having a friend to play with again – he’s been SO good with Lars and it’s great to see him perky again.

So, that’s September in a nutshell! Lots of ups, a couple of downs, but overall it was a decent start to a new school year! October has the potential to be an interesting month, but we’ll see how it goes!

What were some of the highlights for you in September?!