Saturday, April 12, 2014

A birthday letter to my Mother







Dear beautiful Momma:

It's been four short years since I've heard your voice saying how much you love me. Next week you would turn 75. Or maybe fake 66? But don't worry, I'll keep that on the down low (read: share it with the worldwide interweb, just as you would have wanted).

True love
Your birthday is strangely all wrapped up in the day you last said goodbye but because you wouldn't want me to focus on the weight of that sadness, I will celebrate your very full, strong life instead of mourning the end of it. Taken far too quickly by such an awful disease, it is so easy to get lost in the sadness. To be honest, sometimes it's a celebration with a l'il side of the ugly cry. I can still hear you asking Sissy "What is WRONG with her?" all hysterical, while clutching your heart dramatically, whenever you witnessed the infamous Colie ugly cry, because my pain was your pain. And that is the love of a mother.

And you were a bit of a nut.

haha.

To celebrate your birthday this year, we're having a girls night (we'll miss you bro!) at the Comedy Festival (good one, right?) because that was your favorite. Well, that and gambling but you know how that gives Sissy heart palpitations. So in honor of you, I will laugh too loud and possibly blow my nose during the one moment when the entire place is completely silent. Because that's how you rolled. I'll also overdose on poutine, fake lose my keys at least 32 thousand times, encourage everyone to go to the casino, and secret eat some cheesecake at 2 am. Because there's a little lot of you in me.

Family.
Missing our (crazy) glue but sticking together. 
I want you to know I am okay. In fact, most of the time, I'm really happy. I have a lot less chances of getting shot at work now. Oh how I wished I could call you with my super spectacular new job news. But I sort of feel like maybe you had a hand in it? Life seems to be falling into place. Maybe I'm just ready?

I know, I know...you're getting confused by the errrr...switcheroos (for lack of a better word) that I've been pulling in the romance department...and yes, I maaaaay have too many balls in the air at times (hardy har har)...which I'm sure would have you on the phone daily to my sisters and brother talking about how I need to "get a grip" but...I'm finding my way, Mom. I'm living my life with passion now, and with love. I like to think you'd understand.  

PARIS!
Over the years, I've taken your locket of ashes with me to New York City, Italy, Paris and lots of smaller stops in between on this crazy road I'm travelling. Maybe Hawaii next? Sometimes I bring you along because I think you would love to be there experiencing it with me - to see the Eiffel Tower all lit up and flickering for just a brief moment, to see Times Square bustling and taste the thrill of the city in the air, and to see Italy, to just soak it all up...the art, the churches, the amazing food. I know 3 gelato a day was a bit much but hey! I was grieving. More often though, I bring you along when I feel like I need you. And I do. I still need you. 

The coolest kid EVER! He misses you.
I know you would be his biggest fan - bragging about how talented and funny and brilliant he is to all your friends
(and of course, strangers on the street)
I need you most when I'm ready to pull my hair out as a mother myself...to hear you laugh at my stories and wash away all my self doubt. To remind me that I can do it and that I'm a really good mom. And of course, to hear you moan about how you had to do it with FOUR children all alone. I know now how hard that was and that you did the very best you could. Leaving us all with enough of the crazy to make us a little more interesting and with enough love to last us long after you've gone.
Look at her now! Oh how you would laugh together Momma.
She is me.
She is you. 
So...happy happy happy birthday my irreplaceable Momma. I miss you. I hope you're proud of me. And I love you more than words could ever say. 

I carry your heart.
Colie
xoxo

I can still hear you singing this one

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Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Ten Is The Coolest Number


Happy 10th Birthday to my favorite guy. My sweet, sweet son. For ten wonderful, challenging, very fun years I've had the privilege of seeing your smile and hearing that perfect little giggle. YOU are my favorite boy in the whole world.



Its amazing how at 10 years old you are such an incredible person, you and I have a very cool connection where you know what I'm thinking before I say anything and just one tiny change in the expression on your adorable face tells me if you are happy or scared or don't feel well. And oh how we laugh together. You have the BEST sense of humor.

Someday I hope you'll read all my blog posts and learn a little more about my shenanigans and maybe see yourself in me...and know that through all of the ups and downs, you and your baby sister are my biggest achievement, my reason for being, my whole heart.

So...in honor of you hitting the double digits - WOO HOO!! - here are 10 things I love about you, my beautiful boy:

1. You are super sensitive and while it sometimes upsets you because you feel things deeper than others do and you worry more (like me), it actually makes you more thoughtful, more in tune with others, and more caring and pure and kind. Please don't ever try to change that. People will tell you that you're too sensitive and will see it as a flaw. It isn't. It is what makes you special.



2. You love making people laugh and just between us, I think you most enjoy making me laugh. With you I have that loud, belly busting kinda laughter. I hear my mother when you make me laugh. You are a fun, funny kid. You do the best British accent ever and have some kick @ss dance moves. I like to think you get your humor from me. Probably a bit from your father too though. He can be pretty entertaining as you know from all the stories I'm sure he's thrilled that I tell you ("Declined! Declined! Approved!"). But always remember...and this part is very important...I'm much funnier than your Dad.

3. You are the most creative, talented boy I've ever known. Your artwork amazes me every single day and the ideas you come up with simply blow my mind. You are truly an artist. A creative soul. I could not be more proud. I can't wait to see what the future holds for you.

4. You pay attention. You know my favorite chocolate bar(s), the things I hate (especially Ketchup), my style of jewelry (your future girlfriend will be very lucky!), and I can say I love some little thing in a store in passing and you remember and drag your Dad out to get it for me. The latest being a comfy, warm, purple polka dotted robe that I now live in. It's like being wrapped in your tiny little arms, all filled with love.

5. You remember EVERYTHING. Every gift ever received...you know who gave it to you. Every one's birthday. Every detail of fun trips and crazy stories. Like me, you love to re-tell those stories, re-live the moments and laugh. Our recent favorite being the time I pretended to be Elf, covered my eyes, ran and slammed into the closet door while accidentally sending your sister flying into the air. Oh the laughs we've had re-enacting that little stunt. The 6 year old doesn't find it as funny. Weird, eh?

6. You cherish the little things. Cards and tiny gifts you've received from your Grammy since you were born all saved in a special box you love to look through, everything from my mom (your Nanny) remains important to you from stuffed animals she picked just for you, to old coins and antique keys, and you find special places in your room for all those memories (slightly concerned about hoarding tendencies but you make up for it with your sweet sentimentality). Nanny would be so happy to see that she lives on in your heart and I am certain that your Grammy is over the moon proud of you.


7. When you get angry or frustrated (mostly at your baby sister), you manage it with sarcasm and humor and perfect timing...like when your sister introduced her imaginary friend Liz simply to bug the crap out of you for a day and then flipped out because she couldn't get Liz buckled in the car, I heard you mumble "If I could SEE Liz, I would totally punch her in the head right now". Oh how we laughed. You still ask about Liz, but now it bugs the crap out of your sister. You kill me.

8. You pretend like you hate your sister because that's what big brother's do, and then you make her gifts and teach her things with patience and laughter, and you yell "love ya" from your room when you say goodnight. You are the best big brother ever. She's so lucky to have you.



9. When you're scared, you tell me. First you make sure that your sister can't hear because you're protective of her but you gather up the courage to admit when something scares you and you snuggle into me and listen as I reassure you that whatever the latest story those grade 4 kids are spreading around is not true and there is no "Bloody Mary" or dog that smiles at you before it kills you. Side note: those story telling kids are making me crazy/crazier.

10. You are my sunshine.

So happy, happy, happy birthday my 10 year old boy!!!! I'm letting you play hookie from school this afternoon (after you get your birthday pencil and "custom" card and b-day announcement at school this morning, of course!)...we will do whatever your heart desires and I can't wait to share this day with you.

The Big Day
I adore you.

Love,
Your Mom
xoxoxoxo

PS: You can do anything.








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Monday, January 6, 2014

Dear 2013. A.K.A Screw self reflection. Give me cookies!


Dear 2013:

You've been a bit of a tricky one. Some days I felt courageous and brave and able to take on whatever life brought my way and some days I felt alone and defeated and ready to leap off something tall. 

Whether good or bad, I am thankful for each and every day of the past year. Well, except that one day where I walked in on my coworker barfing and ran out into the office hallway with my pants down. Oh! And those 2 months where I was completely bamboozled. I'd prefer to skip those. Wait. Where was I? Oh yes, I was being thankful for them ALL.

The truth is, I wouldn't even take away the difficult moments because it's in those moments that I dug down deep and figured out a way to keep going.

Ppppffffttttttt.

Orrrrr I lived in denial with Oreo cookie binges in bed and drank too much wine. Not gonna lie, there was a lot more wine drinking and cookie eating than self reflection and drawing on some sort of inner strength. But I do have a strange ability to always remember that even in the dark days, I have so much to be thankful for and I can usually find humor in everything. Yup. Already I can reenact the barfing trauma and laugh. I have to take a Clonazepam first, but still. Thank you to my beautiful Momma for teaching me thankfulness and raising me with just enough dysfunction to make me funny.

I missed my Mom a lot this year. And I mean lot, a lot. Time really does make the loss easier to bear but for some reason I felt like I really needed her this year. I took some steps backwards in 2013 and it kind of pissed me off. Not that she could have stopped me from making the choices I made, but when life got off the rails, I know she would have been there reminding me that everything happens for a reason. Because she believed that crap and she made me believe it too. 

I think the most important lesson I've learned in 2013 is to let go. To let go of the foolish notion that I have to be the perfect partner, the perfect mother, the perfect ex-wife, the perfect friend...the perfect whatever...because when I had moments of imperfection, I had a hard time letting go. I became my worst critic. I was mean to myself. I sometimes forgot that life is hard. It's complicated. It's sometimes messy. It doesn't always go as planned. Sometimes it takes a sharp left when you were trying hard to go right and you end up slamming your head into the window and wondering what the eff happened...and that's okay.

I am learning to accept the imperfection in myself and in life itself. I'm letting the rest go.

So, lots of learning and some amazing memories over the past year (stay tuned for my year in photographs video to pop up here ~ sometime before 2015 I swear!). Some new, wonderful, kind, generous, fun people came into my life and some incredible, accepting, loving, fun people (*fun is my favorite) that I have known for years or a lifetime, remain. I'm grateful for every single one of you and excited to see what 2014 has in store for all of us!

I have a feeling it's gonna be spectacular! Sure, that feeling may be due to the sugar high I'm currently in after discovering popcorn drizzled perfectly in dark sweet chocolate...or it may just be hope. 

With love,



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Saturday, September 7, 2013

Always bring the BIG box o' Smarties

So, I was on a road trip for work not long ago...far out of town...far, far, far...no cell reception kinda far (Rogers can suck it by the way!) and most days, I really enjoy the drive. Out of the office. Sun shining. I don't have to speak to anyone for 2 WHOLE hours each way. It's like mini retreat.

On these long drives I usually do the following:
  • Blast Taylor Swift and sing my fool head off (Ppppsssshhhh. Don't judge me. That girl knows heartache).
  • Pull over at least 3 times to power snooze because the winding road puts me to sleep. FOR REAL. 
  • Slap myself in the face 52 times to stay awake in between the side of road snoozes.
  • Pee on side of road at least two times because A. the last time I stopped at the little outhouse located about an hour from my destination, I had nightmares for days!!! Let's just say someone had explosive pooping incident. Oh god. Even typing it makes me need to scrub my retinas. I always tell myself "Self. DO NOT LOOK IN THE BOWL". So I close my eyes and I back my ass up and then what do I do? I FRICKIN LOOK! NEVER look people. NEVER EVER. (Side note: Do you think it's a coincidence that directly across from evil outhouse is a restaurant called Toots? And by restaurant I mean trailer. That sells food. Which by my strong powers of deduction leads to explosive pooping. and B. have bladder size of thimble. 
  • Contemplate all major life decisions.
  • Give myself a headache contemplating life decisions.
  • Stop to pick the flowers.
So, this one day I decide on my drive to the end of the earth that on my way back I will pick me some Lupins. They are actually a bean. Weird, eh? Or a 'legume' if you will. Which happens to be one of my favorite words. And they grow all over the side of the road in Nova Scotia. I think they're beautiful and they remind me of the small little town I lived in until I moved to the big bad city and mostly, they remind me of my mother. 
http://www.dunesgallery.com
Pretty, right? 

I scope out the perfect spot for stealing picking totally free flowers. I choose a dirt road off the winding road I'm on. No houses. No people. The flowers are all mine for the taking. I park Jeffrey (my car) and hop out. The lupins line the whole road and there are all different shades and colors...I decide I will be sweet little sister and pick some for my big sis too. I abandon my car and start walking down the road all the while trying to pick the mother effers. Their stems are TOUGH. I develop new technique of pulling them directly from the ground root and all and decide we can plant them in our garden. Brilliant. 

I'm about half a kilometer (or 1000 miles for my American readers?) from Jeffrey with my arms FULL of Lupins in all colors and I'm bent right over yanking these flowers as hard as I can because seriously they are stubborn little buggers *picture this:


But with this face 


...and my @ss in the air. 

And then a big ol' truck pulls in and stops right behind Jeffrey. With a big ol' man driving. I immediately panic because my Momma taught me that basically everyone is a pervert. PER-VERT. He gets out and starts walking towards me. By now I'm about a full kilometer from my car (or 6324 miles?) and I am thinking SWEET MOTHER OF ALL THINGS HOLY!!! My keys are in my car. My cell is in the car (and is also useless because of stupid asshole phone with no signal. Really must change service providers. Dammitt Colie. This is not the time!!). You are about to be MURDERED!!!

Or worse. 

And then I remember. I have a box of Smarties in my pocket. Did I forget to mention that snacking is also what I do to stay awake? 

Smarties will SAVE MY LIFE!!!! 

I will leave a trail of Smarties when I am dragged off into woods to be murdered.

Or *gasp* worse. 

I reach for Smarties and realize that I only have about 7 left. I really enjoy Smarties. 

I hope he does not drag me very far. 

He's quickly approaching. I start to try and be rational. Surely he won't MURDER me?! He maybe just wants to help me pick the Lupins? Is that why he has that ax? Kidding. No ax in sight. But he LOOKED like an ax murderer. The ax was probably in his truck people. With the chloroform. And rope. And all the ax murder-y things. And he's driving a freaking 18 wheeler, not a pick-up truck. Although both are equally creepy when you are about to be murdered. 

Or WORSE!

He walks up and I'm shaking my 7 Smarties getting all prepared...and he says "Be very careful..." OH. MY. GOD. The murderer is warning me. Do I run? Didn't Oprah say never to leave the first location? Jesus. What did Oprah say?! WHAT DID OPRAH SAY??!!! "...Lupins are poisonous if you eat them". I reply, in between my nervous laughter and eye darting as I mentally plan my path to run...serpentine...serpentine..."Ummmm. Thank you, I'll be careful. not. to. eat. them?" And then he leaves. 

So, not murdered (yay!) and Lupins look lovely in my sister's garden. Mine remained unplanted and died. Because I have commitment issues. 

Moral of the story: Bring FAMILY size bag o Smarties on every road trip. And do not EAT the Lupins. You're welcome. 

 


For the LOVE of GOD. Someone get that little girl outta there!! WHERE are her parents!??!



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Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Do you know where YOUR undies have been?

In a little over 2 months I will very happily stand beside one of my very best friends as she and her sweet love tie the knot and I am over the moon excited...aside from one little glitch. My cute little black bridesmaid's dress is a wee bit too little now. See, the thing is, I was measured for it when I was in a dark place - and then I got happy and healthy. Good, right? But now - - can't. breathe. in. dress. No jokes people. And breathing is important.

So, I can get the dress on - rather painfully - but after about 2.5 minutes of shallow breathing, I am about to pass out.

Actual conversation while stuck in dress:

Colie
posted toDubs
Sweet mother of all things holy. Cannot breathe in bridesmaid dress. No joke. Is very painful.

Am in big trouble.

Too late to ship back for bigger size?

OINK.
Like · 
  • Colie: In fact, not only is breathing impossible but to get it zippered up, I had to shove and squeeze all upper body fat down to lower half of dress and is now oozing out below waist of dress. Bad. Very bad. If you see me binge eating chips (or anything else) in my office, you have permission to slap it out of my hands and punch me in head.
    March 3 at 9:02pm · Like · 1
  • Dubs: Hahahahaha. That is quite the mental image! I am sure you are exaggerating, but maybe we can have a mutual agreement on the chip binging, and you can punch me too. The only problem is I am an expert secret eater. Particularly when it comes to chips!
    March 3 at 9:04pm · Unlike · 2
  • Colie: FYI - may be wearing dress to work Tuesday. Am home alone and appear to be stuck in dress. If you don't hear from me tomorrow, please send help. Thankyouverymuch.
  • Dubs: Hahahaha, well surely that will stretch it out a little? Do you need me to call 911?
  • Colie: Sadly, the material appears opposed to stretching. Ummm...not yet...but remains a possibility...


And here are just a few of the solutions offered by my lovely friends to solve my little problem:

  • Duct tape me into the dress (this one is still under consideration)
  • Some weird tea to boost my metabolism - which is apparently so delicious it made another friend barf! Ahhhhhh...I think you all know my thoughts on that. The tea is OUT.
  • Oil up body with cream to create slick skin for slipping on of dress...I actually thought about trying this until we remembered how wrong it could go:



  • Some kinda magic patch I stick on my body with plastic wrap. Seems a bit too kooky, even for me.
  • And some crazy fools (you know who you are!) recommended I eat healthy ALL the time (Read: cut out my Smarties binges!) and you know, EXERCISE. Pppppfffttttttt.
And my idea:
Body sucking in contraption(s).

I tell future bride that I'm thinking of taking the dress into Victoria's Secret* to try on with nifty body sucking in contraption I saw there...thong on bottom...super body suckage on top.

Bride to be: (with look of horror on face)...but you can't actually try on underwear.
Bride-smaide extraordinaire: I always try on my underwear before I buy them. How else can I tell if they make my butt look cute fit properly.
Bride to be: Shut up. If people try on underwear, that means someone else's vagina may have been in my underwear!???!
Bride-smaide extraordinaire: Honey - MY vagina may have been in your underwear.
And then we I laaaaaaughed.

So yeah, gonna give the sucking in contraption a go. Perhaps I'll even double up. If that doesn't work - it'll be duct tape all the way.

*Pretty sure I was hypnotized when I walked into Victoria's Secret store. That joint is magical. MAGICAL, people. It smells so good and their bras make my boobs look 22 again. I don't care what Victoria's secret is, I love her.

Leave me a comment and share your ideas. I have 65 days to get my @ss into the dress. And don't even think about that exercise foolishness. I went for a walk tonight and it's official - - I'm not a big fan. My idea of exercise is hiking to a pretty picnic spot and stopping to make out and eating snacks along the way. Even better if someone is carrying me to picnic spot. So yeah, exercise is out.

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