Crazy thought, School Yearbook, and Happy Happy Birthday

Crazy thought, School Yearbook, and Happy Happy Birthday, stories from the Carr family for one of the last weeks of the summer, fully protected with sunscreen.

I think all research and development into space exploration should be stopped. Add to that renewable energy and possibly all spending on the production and creation of reality TV. All this time, effort and money to be refocused into the development of a device that would allow us to record our dreams, like some kind of “mind-PVR”. Think about it. If we could roll out a 15 foot HDMI cable, and just lift up some skin coloured flap, at our hair line and “plug in” and see what it is that is going on in our mind at night, we may just be able to solve all the worlds’ problems.

I was having one heck of a time sleeping one night last week and while listening to Nathalie dream, I got to thinking about some of the crazy dreams, I think I have had. I say “think” because I can very rarely remember the wild worlds I have traveled to, or things I have done while REM’ing. I do know that sometimes, while just getting ready for bed, in those moments before you close your eyes, that your most creative ideas and answers to probing questions float around in your head. One of my mentors used to tell me that you should always keep a pad of paper beside your bed for jotting down the things that you come up with in this state.

I am sure, if we could somehow capture this information, more than some kind of chart and brain scanned plot on some graph paper showing increased activity, we would discover some wondrous things about our world and ourselves. Maybe, just maybe it would become the new reality TV.

What kind of student where you in high school? I have all my yearbooks from East York, and the other week, one was discovered and the girls where looking through it, trying to find pictures of me. It was from 1986, my grade 10 year and that particular year I was the background kind of student, not much of a center of attention. So other than my class photo and the stage crew picture, I think I am only found in the very background of a football game crowd shot. My sister Janey is in there a bunch, but not me.

The girls got a kick out of it none-the-less, and wanted to show it to all who crossed their path. They asked the question, “Will we have a yearbook when we are in high school?” and that got me thinking about them growing up and actually going to high school, and that was a little scary! They also seemed genuinely upset when I told them when the book came out I was mad because I was missed in the picture of the group that did the school musical, “Hello Dolly”. I was in the production, even had a line, but was not in the picture for whatever reason. I wasn’t even named in the, “Absent” section. I was able to turn it into a lesson about getting involved, and I sure hope they do… just not too soon.

This blog is a re-cap of things that both pop into my mind in any given week, and of course a log of significant events in and around the Carr house. When I write something about this part of August, I have to talk about an important anniversary, of the birthday variety. 10 years ago, the biggest little girl came into our lives, and the joy we have felt in her presence since that day is significant. When anyone who meets our girls, tell us afterwards how wonderful they are, when they describe Julia they use words like funny, old sole, smart and entertaining. I think the best complement to parenting you can receive is how well liked your kids are and the truth is we must be great parents!

I did not write a blog back in May when my oldest turned into a teenager, so I am happy to include a mention of her in this post. Jordyn is aging finer than an expensive bottle of wine, impressing us each day with her sensitivity and kind heart. 13 and 10, both in double digits. Wow, time is just racing by.

Last year in some kind of idiot savant, forward thinking decision; we purchased 2012 season passes for Canada’s Wonderland for the whole family. Nearing the end of school, when the commercials started airing, the girls where pumped about spending a lot of time there this summer. Well, one thing leads to the next, and before you know it is August and we had yet to go to Wonderland. In the last two weeks, we have gone twice, and have had a blast. Think we will sneak another couple of visits in before the park closes for this year too.

The girls are not too adventuress when it comes to thrill rides, so we can avoid the longest lines most times. This last time we went, we took one of the girls’ friends, so Nathalie was able to go on some of the more crazy rides with her. Drop-Zone was the last ride of the night and I some how got involved in the lineup, and although I am not afraid of heights, or averse to going on rides, it is not normally my thing. The ride was fun, but the look on the ride attendant’s face at the end of the drop, worried me a bit, when my release got stuck and would not let me out. Nathalie laughed and said to the attendant… “Does that mean he has to go again?” “Umm… ok?” Guess she wasn’t as worried about the safety issues as I was. So I got to double ride… and lived to tell about it….

In closing
When the previews first came on the television for “Here comes Honey Boo Boo” both Nathalie and I stared at each other, mouth open, saying in unison, there is NO way we are watching that crap! Cut to a month later, and we have actually watched a couple of episodes, some all the way through! Now for judgment purposes we are not fans and don’t have a “rush home to watch” mentality with it, we look at it more like a train wreck, that you can’t look away from. In this week’s episode not only did the train crash, but there was a couple of cars and a 4 wheeler in there for good measure too. The best, though made it to Nathalie’s FB timeline in the form of a picture of the TV screen, in an “I can’t believe it moment”. The picture is of a sign above what looks like any common general store in the south US except for the spelling. “Kuntry Stoe”. We could not believe our eyes, and if we hadn’t rewound the show and snapped the picture, we might never have. Still makes me laugh when I think about it!

Well off to check some sign speelin’ of my ohwne!

Thanks for reading and have a great and safe week!

A Rainy Day Monday, Naked Naomi, Birthdays and Mothers

A Rainy Day Monday, Naked Naomi, Birthdays and Mothers, the long lost Carr blog has finally been found and now up online wrapping up week 18.

When Nathalie was little, her doll of choice was her Cabbage Patch Kid, Naomi Adeline. Now if you are quick in you head with math and are in complete touch with pop culture, you would be able to figure out that when the worldwide phenomenon of the cute little doll hit it’s stride in the mid 80’s, Nathalie would have been around 14 or 15 years old. So the doll was way more like a future investment item than an actual toy, but nonetheless, it was hers.

When we had girls, and they too received Cabbage Patch Kids for Christmas one year, it seemed like a nice idea to bring Naomi out of her resting state, and let the girls play with her and love her as much as their Mom did and that is just what we did. The girls have been playing with her on and off for a while, but there was always something missing, and I am happy to report that a couple of weeks ago, during a trip to Oma’s they raided her doll clothes, and finally dressed the naked Naomi. Not sure whatever happened to the clothes that she would have been sold with, OR if she spent a whole lot of time, without clothing while in Nathalie’s possession, but she has been bare for a long time that I can remember and I am happy that she has now been covered up.

Rain Rain Go Away
A couple of weeks ago, I laughed as I wrote my Facebook status updated, referencing a Pathetic Fallacy. You see I was a little down, and waking up in the morning to wet weather was frustrating, only to be standing in it for the regular morning duties of Kiss and Ride. For just a second, I had a Disney movie moment image flash in my head, when the hunky lead (that’s me!) has to trudge, reflectively through the wind and rain, with the sad music playing hoping beyond hope that the sexy female lead will appear in a warm car with her magic umbrella, only to find out that the car approaching was a jealous ex-boyfriend, who only slowed enough to hit the puddle just right, so as to give me a good splash.

Gym update
Well I would not say that we have fallen off the gym wagon, but we have jumped off and on over the last few weeks a couple of times. Both Nathalie and I have had knee and or shoulder issues, and in some cases, time issues and as a result we are not as regular visitors as we had been. Having said that, we are still proud to say that we have kept our good eating habits, and attempts at regular water hydration, and as such, have maintained the weight loss, and not gained anything back. We are still very committed, and will be back on the gym track this week.

Truth be told, I hate to see graffiti. However, I will confess here right now that in my 42 years, I have written on a wall in a public place, twice that I remember. The first was during what must have been our first Jim and Nathalie “couple” road trip when we where dating in 1992 or 1993 to Boldt Castle. Such a romantic image, this beautiful building, on one of the 1000 islands’, originally built as a testament of a husbands love to his wife. In one of the yet to be renovated rooms, thousands of “declarations of love” adorned the walls and with all that love floating around, Nathalie and I wrote our names and professed our love for one another.

The second instance of petty vandalism came much later in life, on a birthday trip to Mother Tuckers, for my Dad’s 70th, when we marked the special occasion, by adding our family name to a free brick near the closet, like many had done before us. In both cases, not even close to being trend setters, just another name on a wall of names. Certainly, a bit of a long story to get around, to my original point, that I don’t like graffiti, but I felt I had to share.

This came to mind, while visiting a bathroom stall at work, with certainly no shortage of doodles’ and word dribble to occupy your mind when you are otherwise occupied. A couple of weeks ago, I conceived this entire piece in my head, after spying this little ditty. “If God was a woman then we’d all be sandwiches”. I mean this guy is so right, and I am so glad I had a chance to peer into the mind of a genius. I hope the sarcasm is obvious in my statement… I just don’t get it!

Jordyn’s Hair
It must be hard to be a girl with respect to expectations, and how you see yourself specifically with your appearance. Yes, men have issues too, but there has always been too much emphasis placed on what you look like when you are a girl. Well the other week, Nathalie was having a Mommy moment with Jordyn, and talking about her hair, and her overall displeasure with it and exclaiming, “I hate my hair”. Nathalie was quick on her feet and responded with a, “Don’t ever let me hear you say you hate anything about your body! Your body has parts of me and daddy and all your grandparents – do you hate us?” Jordyn quickly answered with a clear and resounding “No!” I am so glad that first Nathalie will always get those tough talks, and second, that Nathalie always does such a great job in cutting to the truth and to help our daughters love themselves for who they are.

I would a little remiss if I did not cover off some of the significant birthdays that have happened since my last post, and considering this is the busiest time of year for such occasions with us, there have been a few. On the 4th of April, my brother-in-law Earl turned 42; my other brother-in-law Guy turned 50 on the 18th, Nathalie turned 42 on the 23rd (more on that in a second), the girl on the corner, turned 73 on the 24th and on May 3rd, my sister turned (older) and my adopted nephew, Cayce, turned 16. My apologies for anyone else I’ve missed… and Rylan… I know you’ll be turning 16 on the 26th – so Happy ‘early’ birthday to you!

April 24th, 2011
Easter / Birthday Swim
Yes, April and May are what we call Hallmark months, and I am so happy to tell everyone, all reports from the birthday celebrations are all positive. Speaking personally of the party to mark the anniversary of my wife’s birth, it was a super nice night, highlighted by a birthday swim. YES my wife wanted the pool open, for her birthday, and so, we cranked up the heat and that is just what we did. I will let you know how if it was worth the fun we had when the gas bill comes in!

When talking with a friend a while back, who lost her mom a couple of years ago, she said that just about every big holiday, or family celebration that happens after a loved one’s passing, is going to be hard. Stands to reason I guess, for the first year or more, you’re still grieving and dealing with the loss and when your emotions are heightened by family gatherings or an event like Mothers Day, you just are more tuned in. Today, in the summer heat, while sitting on the porch, my mind flashed back to Mothers Days’ of the past, and I also saw images of my mom dancing at my wedding and of all things, her face on Christmas morning, opening gifts. Yes it is hard, but it is getting easier. (My Mom blog from September)

I am fortunate to have a good relationship with my Mother-in-law and I look forward to time with her. Today on Mothers Day, she shared with my a bit of a philosophy and perspective on mothering and I was very grateful. She said, “When you are given a child, they are a blank canvas. They become whatever you paint on them”, and I thought first how true that was, and then second I thought how wonderful of a painter she is, to have done such a wonderful job with every brush stroke of love and caring she put into Nathalie to have painted such a wonderful person for me and my girls.

In Closing
So what is it that makes it a perfect day for you? I have a friend at work that answers the question, “How’s it going?” with, “Upright and breathing!” and I laugh, thinking that that would be one way to go. If you break it all down, the perfect day is one you have the same number of exhales as you do inhales and that is just fine I guess, but to me, today would be a great example of a “Perfect Day”; Sun shining, kids playing in the pool, music loud and in the background and guests at our house enjoying a few laughs and some great food. Top that with a little bit of the pride that comes from accomplishing a few things around the house that I have wanted to do for a while, oh yeah, and ice cream and this WAS the perfect day. Mark it down, Mothers Day, 2011 a perfect day in my books!

Hope your day was perfect as well!

Thanks for reading and have a great and safe week.