Friday, November 25, 2011

Catch Up Fridays

(Cathy) Hi all. So I just finished my first five days in a row working full time. Ugh! Will someone please tell me again why I (and it was me) chose this new path? I will get used to it in time. Funny thing though, the time at work flies by and I like it, however, reality hits when I come home. How am I supposed to do all that I did in the three hours I have free before I have to go to bed? I wore a pedometer last week and in nine hours at work I walked over 13, 400 steps! The recommendation is from 10,000 to 12,000 steps for an active person! What does this make me? Is it good for a loss of five pounds? Ten? In time I will figure out a new schedule. It's the cooking and phone calls and organizing that I have to reorganize. I will give myself until after Christmas to get it all working. (Sunshine) Good luck with the new shift. I suppose one way to look at it is if you are going to work, then you may as well work all day and make some good money out of it. (Carolin) That is alot of steps Cathy. I should have a look around for my pedometer I would be curoius to see how many steps a day I take.

On to another topic. What did everyone think of the Breast Cancer post? Did anyone go onto the Rethink Breast Cancer website? There has been a lot of talk on the news lately about Breast Cancer screening. I have no answer, I just wish cancer would go away. I watched a friend die of Breast Cancer. She had discovered a small lump in her breast. She did go to her doctor who told her it was nothing to worry about. Her instincts told her otherwise. She had to really bug him and when he would not get the lump tested she went to another doctor. That doctor did the test. By that time the lump had grown and it was too late. I get that testing costs money and some tests might do more harm than good. So, what is the answer? The "C" work really scares me. I watched the video like you asked Cathy. I thought it was a little over the line but that is cause I am a prude I guess. I got there point though and that is what matters in the long run.

Changing subjects yet again. This Sunday is pudding day. It's the First Sunday of Advent. Time for three stirs and a wish! I am sure that it will be a really fun filled family day. I am sure you will have a great time with your Mom, Sister and Aunts.

I haven't' got all my shopping done yet but I have made a big dent in it. It was a another busy week at work. We had 4 volleyball teams visit from other schools for a tournament on Wednesday. We will be hosting another tournament this coming Monday. And of course it is that time of year so I am gearing up for Bethlehem Breakfast. I have everything ordered or completed (I think). On Thursday school is done at 1:00 pm so after I clean up I will be heading up to the Holland Marsh and pickup 50 poinsettias from a grower.

The husband set up the Christmas tree but we have a problem. Seems the kitten (Prince) loves the tree. He climbs up to the top and sits up there and has his nap. The little one doesn't want us to put any decorations on the tree so Prince can enjoy it. I on the other hand am not to pleased. I am going to get the lights on the tree and hope that will be a deterrent for him to stay off the tree. The teenager thinks I am buying the 50 poinsettias for the house so that I can poison the cat!

Wishing everyone a warm and happy Christmas Season!

p.s. Dear Santa, I've been good this year..... really!

Have a wonderful weekend everyone!

Saturday, November 19, 2011

Rethink Breast Cancer - TLC

Just a friendly reminder!

Thanks to Rethink Breast Cancer. They are located in Toronto, ON. They have a great web site!


Friday, November 18, 2011

Catch up Fridays

(Caroline) Well look at this, its Friday and I am the one setting up the blog. I am not good at dealing with a white screen. So where to start. (Cathy) Awesome job! I went Christmas shopping with my mom. We are almost done! Just one or two little things to pick up.

Another week has gone by. Same old, same old at work. We had a 1:00 pm dismissal today. I brought Mac and cheese home with me as KD has to work. She will come for dinner later. I love mac and cheese. Just yesterday I asked my mom if she would be so kind as to make her mac and cheese for us for dinner one night. I love it with ketchup!!! ???? Mac and Cheese are two little girls (KD's daughters) But glad you like them with ketchup!

(Sunshine) Its been a busy week and a frustrating one at that. I have been working all week for another catering company in another school all week. It is far to get to but I told them that I would help them for two weeks until they found someone permanent. It's a busy place and run very efficiently. The pay is a big issue once again and I am getting so frustrated. To work our butts off for almost nothing just doesn't seem fair. Then I had an interview this week in retail for a company that I really like. They are doing a background check and then I will receive the offer letter according to the manager. I love the environment and the staff and philosophy of the company with regards to the customers and their employees. My frustration again is with the hourly wage. I can't understand how any mature adult can be expected to work for minimum wage. This job would be part time and would include weekends and summers and March break as well but at least there is room for future advancement and it could possibly become a career in the years to come. It would mean a lot of changes within my family and some of them I don't really know how to handle. Summer time will be a big problem as Miss Teen Sunshine will be working long hours and Mr Sunshine is in and out of town and not available for time with Little Miss Sunshine when I would be working. Taking her to work with me is not an option, I already asked that question. I know everyone is thinking how am I different from any other family out there. I want to know how do people do it when putting her in a day camp would be more than what I would make for the week and she and I would be very unhappy. I feel as though I am going around in circles again and again with regards to this subject. I am feeling so lost. Sunshine, what job would make you happy? I ask this because though I work 70 plus hours a week and if it is a good week I might make $8.00 an hour, on the most part I am happy. I wake up looking forward to going to work, I enjoy my day. Of course there are parts about it that are frustrating but all in all I like it. The hourly rate is the hourly rate, Ontario's minimum wage is one of the highest in the world! As a consumer we want the cheapest price for products and service but as an employee we want to make what we feel we are worth. Unfortunately, they don't meet.

On to family life, little Miss Sunshine is getting older so she could be left alone at home during your shifts. Teen Sunshine can look for a summer job that is closer to home or take the bus as many others do. Mr. Sunshine has always had a job that required him to travel. And that is not going to change. Is the compromising with your home life worth it? Keep in mind with retail you will work 4 hour shifts (all over the place), for less then what you were making, and is there a real potential for a career? Are you willing to work whenever they ask and (you will hate this) do you really think career advancement will be given to a 40 plus with baggage(husband, kids availability restrictions) or to a twenty something who will work when ever and has bounds of energy. I know you won't like that thought, really think about it. The other thing to think about is sick time. Will you have any? Or family care time. They might say that you can call in for a day off for when the kids are sick but will you still have a job and for how long? What about nights? Will you be able to get time off for concerts or after school sports? I have worked 13 years full time and when the Younger One was a year old I went part time. I was lucky because of my seniority I was able to choose shifts which we could make work with our family. I was also lucky because I had my parents and you good ladies available to help out when I was in a pinch. Hubby did not have to travel with his job so there was consistancy there. When we worked out daycare and a house cleaner verses part time; part time came out ahead. Now, after another 13 years I am back to full time. We will see if it will work; however, I still have options. I know you are thinking about all of this and it is a really hard decision!

The Christmas season is upon us, and the city's Santa Clause Parade is tomorrow night. The little one has never been to the parade and every year when we ask her if she wants to go she says "No". This year was no exception till the maintenance guy 'Jim' asked her if she was going? She said she wasn't then he asked her if she would like to sit on a float and be in the parade. Well, that changed everything. So, though she has never been to the parade she can boast she has been in the parade! She is pretty excited! I am so happy for her. She will have a great time. When I worked for a company many years ago I was in the Parade wearing the company's mascot costume. It was a lot of fun and I really enjoyed it. She is going to have a ball.

How's the Christmas shopping coming along? I am hoping to be completed by Dec 1st.

Christmas shopping, what's that?. There is no time and no money, even if there was time.

I think this Christmas will be a good time to refocus on what is important and valuable in life: no money needed!

Have a great weekend everyone!!!!!

Friday, November 11, 2011

Catch Up Fridays

(Cathy) Hi all. Every year on Remembrance Day I try to participate in some way. This year I was home so I watched the ceremonies on the television. I cannot make it through without crying. The Silver Cross Mother always breaks my heart and this year was no different. How I wish life were different. Hopefully, one day.
(Sunshine) I am glad that we have a dedicated day to reflect and remember. There is talk about it becoming a statutory holiday in the future. I hope that this happens as I know that it is a difficult day for so many people.
This year again our older son played, "The Last Post" and "Rouse" for a local elementary school's Remembrance Day's ceremony. We are so proud! That's really special. (Carolin) Remembrance Day is a very special day. The little one's school does such a moving tribute to the lost and all who have sacrificed for our freedom. Sunshine, I don't agree (surprised); I don't think it should be a holiday. I don't think the government, banks and postal workers should have the day off either. I feel if it was a holiday it would end up losing its powerful meaning. Because the kids are at school they are learning about the sacrifice that was made for them. I know most of them are bored but perhaps as they grow up there will be a nugget that they will keep in their heart about what was lost so they can be free. If we had a Statutory holiday most of us would be doing many other things then what the day really is for. I agree with Carolin, if it were a holiday so many people (kids) would not even give the day a thought. This way we have their attention each and every year.

On to another topic. Yesterday, after careful consideration, I cut off all of the old relaxed hair on my head and wow is it short and curly. I love it! I feel so good and when I look at myself in the mirror I see someone I have never met before! Hubby really likes it too!! I can't wait to see it. I love the way your natural hair looks.

Oops, I just looked at the time. I have to go and pick up the Older One from school. I will be back!

This week has been very busy. I put a lot of miles on my car looking for a job and handing in resumes and meeting with people. I was given an offer to start on Monday in one of the high schools and I went and met with the manager and the girls who work there. It is a really nice operation but I declined the job because of the distance. It took me over half an hour to get to the location and it is so far north that driving those country roads in winter would be very challenging. If I was offered more per hour I would definitely consider it but at that hourly wage it just doesn't make sense. I think that I need to stop stressing about finding a job and start enjoying my time off. Christmas is coming and I am lucky to be home. It's so hard to change my mentality and to be OK with staying home now that I have been working again for over two years. I feel guilty at not bringing in an income but at the same time it angers me to know that in certain industries adults (even with a plethora of experience) are being paid minimum wage or something close to that for an honest days work. In the food service industry in particular, unless you are at the top, you are paid a very meager salary. I blame it on the government. Minimum wage has to increase across the board so that employers are forced to pay a higher wage. Every job in society is important and is to be respected. Emergency personnel who work all sorts of hours should be given more money but the rest of the population who do the day to day jobs, we all deserve a decent salary. I think it is best if I don't comment. Well, I have many thoughts with that, especially as a unionized employee who has not had a wage increase in over ten years.

The little one and I had our hair done today using my Wagjag coupon I bought a couple of months ago. $19.00 for a wash, deep conditioning, cut and style. Not bad eh! Hubby said you did something with a coupon at a salon. Was it at a salon you have been to before? Will you go back? Did you cut off all of your hair like I did?

I have been in Christmas mode lately, I copied all my CD's on the computer and is one step closer to getting them on my iPod. I have been in conversation (text) with the sister in law getting the husband's side dinner get together organized. And I heard that just 20 minutes north of us had SNOW! I of course am still wearing my hoodie. I wonder how much longer I can push it before I need to get the winter coat out. All I can say is at 4:45am it is very cold out! 

Have a great weekend everyone!

Lest We Forget. Remembrance Day, November 11

The poppy serves as a symbol of remembrance for those who died defending their country or in the name of peace.

 In Flanders Fields

 In Flanders fields the poppies blow
 Between the crosses, row on row,
 That mark our place; and in the sky
The larks, still bravely singing, fly
Scarce heard amid the guns below.
 We are the Dead. Short days ago
 We lived, felt dawn, saw sunset glow,
 Loved and were loved, and now we lie,
 In Flanders fields.
 Take up our quarrel with the foe:
 To you from failing hands we throw
 The torch; be yours to hold it high.
 If ye break faith with us who die
We shall not sleep, though poppies grow
 In Flanders fields.

In honour of my husband's uncle, MIA December 1941.


Sunday, November 6, 2011

Catch Up Fridays

(Cathy) It's Friday again! Que bonita! Me pregunto si es possible escribir todo esta "blog" en espanol? No? Ok. I hope I spelled all of that correct and the grammar was ok too. If it was not, please feel free to correct me. That's how I will learn. I am finding that the spanish is coming back to me and when I speak spanish with my colleagues at work they seem to understand me, so I will continue to watch, "Las Aparicios" on TLN. It's really good! (Carolin) I love you Cathy but you are really ODD!
I wonder how Carolin and Sunshine did this week? I am sure they had a great time and it was a success! Well, we didn't kill each other. All went well Cathy, always stuff to do. Sunshine was a great worker and it was amazing having her there to help. We got it all done and the customer was happy and that in the end is all that matters. I must say though I am tired, my body is tired, my brain is tired. Feeding 500 teachers is tiring! Firstly, Carolin was a GREAT MANAGER AND BOSS. She has a really amazing operation. I admire her so much for having the courage to just go for it. She took a chance, believed in herself, put in the hard work and she succeeded. Way to go Carolin! I agree!!! You can compete with the big guys no problem. On my way out I expressed to her that I was so impressed that I wish the operation was mine.

How many kids did you ladies get for Halloween? I think we had about 80 kids, adults and dogs trick or treat at our door. It was fun but too short! I did miss the old days! I'm glad it didn't rain. I was home alone (and it was great) we had maybe 18 kids. We had next to nothing left so I believe we had about 150 or so kids. We were out trick or treating for about three hours and it was a fun and warm night.
It was a typical week for me. Just routine. Sometime this weekend I will go and tidy up the yard. All I really do is clean up the containers and bring in my little statues and signs and lamps. I like to leave the seed heads and stalks for the flora and fauna that visit during the winter. Does Merryweather also enjoy the seed heads when she comes to visit? But of course!

Well, as it's Friday we are having pizza for dinner. Big surprise. You would think that they get tired of eating it every Friday. I now I am bored with making if every Friday. It's easy though so I cannot complain too much. Only Fridays, you would be bored of Pizza if you made it everyday like I do and not just one or two but 6 to 10 of them. Now that's boring I love pizza anytime, any day.
The convention is done and now on to the next project. The annual Bethlehem Breakfast. Yes ladies you have heard me whine about this breakfast for 12 years. I am seriously considering hanging up my volunteer hat after this year, it's time for some fresh blood. I find it somewhat frustrating as I try to do something different each year (same basic structure) and it feels to me my ideas are turned down. I had a live Christian singing group, "Carried Away", all lined up to be our entertainment and it would only cost $200.00! I was told, No, cause they are more for adults than kids. Yes, I know that and that is why I wanted them. Guess who buys the tickets and decides if the family is going or not, the adults!!!! Live music is entertaining to kids regardless of what they are singing and if we get the adults engaged then its a win win for all. So guess what we are doing for entertainment this year? Come on guess? You got it as of this date we have NOTHING! $200.00 sound like an amazing deal. I can sing???

Also feels since we have a new principal it is getting more bureaucratic and top heavy. Everything has to go through layers of red tape and purchase orders have to be created. So in the long run not much gets done and it is boring. I no longer have the patience to deal with this kind of 'business'. As I said to Sunshine this week I don't think I could handle working for a 'company' anymore as they zap all your motivation and creativity and it takes forever to get anything done.
I agree and I feel more and more like that everyday.

I am inquiring about poinsettias to purchase for centre pieces and then sell them. I think I will just do it with out telling the powers that be and when all is done and it looks great they can take the credit! It is always hard to stand back and watch the injustice. I always feel though that I will always do what is right and proper and continue to be happy with myself and my choices. Carolin, you will always make the right choice and always remember that what counts is how you live your life!!!

Have a good week everyone!

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

It's November First

Is it spring???

or is it fall???

My garden cannot decide!