Wednesday, 27 February 2013

Five Facts

It's Friday!

And no, I have not lost my mind.  It is Friday for me.  Tomorrow morning my hubby and I are hitting the road.  Just the two of us.  We are only going away for two days, but, nonetheless, I am excited.  There will be no school to teach, no boys to wrestle and argue with, no teenager to constantly remind me of how uncool I am or to roll her eyes at me, no dinners to make, and no puppy to let in and out, in and out, in and out all day long. Yep, it is just going to be and my main man.  This is going to be awesome! And since March Break will be just getting underway when I get back, this will be my last post until school is back in session.  You'll survive; I promise.

Anyhoo . . .

With the thoughts of a two day holiday to distract me and it being February and all, I have absolutely nothing to write about.  It is kind of freaking me out.  This never happens.  I am never at a loss for words.  Okay, since I have clearly just written two paragraphs about absolutely nothing, this is definitely not a case of a loss for words, but rather a loss for ideas.  So, I am stealing an idea from my favourite blogger, Nat the Fat Rat, and I am going to share five things you may not know about me. Fun!  Thankfully, this is a blog and I will never know  if you stop reading right now.  So, go ahead.  I will not be offended.  (just don't tell me, please)

Five Things You May Not Know About Me


Number 1:

I can wiggle my nostrils.  Fascinating, right!  Yes, I am one, very talented woman.  When I was little, I saw someone do it, and I decided right then and there that I would be a nostril-wiggling adult. Why? I don't know.  It just seemed like a valuable thing to learn so I would stare into my mirror every night as I was brushing my teeth, and will my nostrils to wiggle.  Eventually, they did and I have been able to do it ever since.  This talent fascinates Avery to no end, and he is determined to join me in this elite club.

Number 2:When I was little, I aspired to become a cashier at Sears and to live in a mobile home.  These must have been my retirement plans because I also wholeheartedly believed that I was going to win the Miss Universe pageant someday.  With a talent like nostril-wiggling, I think I had a chance  . . . tee hee! 

Number 3:
   
My first and only foray into acting was during my university years when I played Angry Vagina in the Vagina Monologues. I know! How cool is that? I can pretty much now say just about anything in front of anyone after that experience.

Number 4:  
When I sleep at night, my toes have to hang off the end of the bed. Being the shorty that I am, this means I have to position myself halfway down the bed. I also have to sleep on my belly and use one particular pillow case because it is soft and does not irritate my face.  I also rock the sleeping world.  I can pretty much sleep anywhere at anytime.  Just ask my in-laws, who almost always find me snoozing on their couch during our Sunday visits (with toes hanging off the cushion)

Number 5:

When I was little, I could not walk on grass in my bare feet.  My mom used to set up our pool so that one end of it would touch our paved walkway in order to give me a grass-free entrance and exit.  She's the best mom ever!  In fact, I still have bare feet issues.  I am good on the sand, but other than that there are very few things I can touch with my feet.  I even wear shoes in the house! Weird!

Well, there you have it.  You now know everything about me, and I still know very little about you.  So, leave a comment about some obscure talent you have or some little known fact about you.  I would love to read them!

Happy Friday-For-Me!

See you in March.

More fun facts: I have never had a blonde hair, I lived to wear dresses, and I was the loudest kid on the street.



Tuesday, 26 February 2013

Just Another Epic Afternoon

I have said it a million times before, and I will say it another million times before I am through:

I love my boys!

I love their enthusiasm, their energy, and their imagination.

On Saturday, yes glorious Saturday, I was folding laundry in my bedroom with the windows open and the sun shining on my back. I could hear the boys laughing and squealing as they were playing in the snow.  Zoe was curled up on the couch working on her social studies project,and Mr. Level-Headed was in class for the day.  Life just felt right at that moment; like everything was in order. Lately, there has been a pervading peace permeating throughout our home. Sometimes I wonder if this is the calm before the storm or the calm after the storm (as in the storm that shall ever be known as 2012), but I quickly brush the thought aside and enjoy what I have in front of me right now: a happy, healthy family.

Anyhoo . . .

As I was folding the towels, hot out of the dryer, I heard Avery holler out to Elliot:

You have to see this!  It is so epic!

Currently, epic is their word of choice and is used to describe all their forays into dare devil notoriety.

Being the nosey and experienced mom I am, I rushed over to the window to catch a glimpse of what they were up to in order to determine if parental intervention was necessary or not.  With one quick glance, I knew everything was all right and I let out a sigh of relief. Then I started to laugh because there was Avery, inside an upside down dog crate, barrelling down our snow-packed hill.  When he got out and saw me looking at him through the window, he hollered:

It solves all of our problems, mom!  We can slide and Scout can chase us, but he can't stop us.  It's totally epic!

I gave him a thumbs up, and he smiled. 



Man, I love my life, and especially, all of those whom I share it with.






Monday, 25 February 2013

It Was in the Air (for one day at least)

Did you feel it?

The oh, so very tiny, and just a pinch really, hint of Spring?

I feel bad if you didn't catch a glimpse of it on Saturday because let me tell you, it was spectacular! It put a spring in my step and made my spirit soar. I spent the day doing laundry and cleaning up the house, with our bedroom windows open, welcoming the cool breeze in to wash away the winter staleness. The bright sunshine and the mild temperature,  drew the boys out to play and inspired me to finally take down our Christmas lights. While I was out there, I daydreamed of getting back into the garden, of getting my knees and hands dirty, and of watching my little buds flourish under the hot, summer sun. 

Sometimes, when I look around at the white world that currently surrounds me, I forget that just beyond this blanket of snow and cold, there are hot sunny days waiting for us.  Days, when we spend almost every waking minute outside swimming, playing soccer, gardening, or just sitting; days when we can slip on some flip flops and leave our sweaters behind; days when the sun never seems to tire and the only thing that outlasts it is my kids' energy; days when we prolong going back into the hot house as long as possible to sit out under the cool night sky, sharing stories and laughs around the bonfire, while I hold one of the kids on my lap, drinking in the smell of summertime that is splashed all over their skin.  

It is coming.

I can smell it on the melting snow.

I can feel it on the sun's rays as it lightens up my home.

Spring is coming.

And even though, we have at least two months before we see and feel any real changes, Saturday was a welcome reminder that She has not forgotten about us and that She is just around the corner.

Saturday morning cartoons and sunglasses
Happy Monday, everyone!




Friday, 22 February 2013

Elliot, Elliot, Elliot

It's FRIDAY!

I can't believe it is finally here.  I never thought I would survive this week, but low and behold, here I am.  This weekend, I am resting. We have a pizza party planned with the Skov's but other than that, there is nothing on the agenda. Soccer was cancelled, which means we can spend our entire Saturday in our jammies, being sloth-like, and this is exactly what my body needs right now. You see, I am currently in Operation-No-Pneumonia mode, a battle I fight and lose every winter, but not this year.  Oh, no, NOT this year. In fact, I woke up this morning with barely a cough, and I can take a nice, long, deep breath without feeling any pinches in my lungs. Hooray!  What did I tell ya?  2013 is going to be my year.

If you are on my Facebook feed, then you heard the bad news. Yes, my fridge died.  My practically brand-new, no longer under warranty, refrigerator no longer refrigerates. Ugh!  But, I am going to save my rant about this disgustingly disposable society we live in for another day. It's Friday! Fridays need to be light and fluffy. Only fun stuff must be shared on Friday. So, here it is: the most ridiculous thing I heard yesterday, and of course, it came from none other than one of my boys.  Honestly, they are absolutely foolish, and I love them all the more because of it.

Let me set it up for you.  Soccer had just begun and I was sitting on the bench in the hallway listening to all the conversations going on around me.  My friend Sheri had just dropped her daughter off, took one look at me and said:

I'm driving the boys home.  You look like you need to sleep.

I started to politely brush her offer off, but I didn't even have it in me to fight.

Thanks, Sheri!

I went home, put my jammies on and got into bed. It was exactly what I needed. Eventually Mr. Level-Headed and Baby Girl came home from volleyball practice with our big grocery order for the week. Since our new fridge is supposed to show up sometime today, we decided to just go ahead and get the groceries anyway and put the food in a cooler.

After everything was put away, Sheri pulled up with the boys.  Elliot came in and saw the cooler sitting on the kitchen floor. He immediately ran over to it and shouted:

Awesome!  Is this our new fridge?

We all stopped and looked at him.

Nope.  That's the cooler.

He looked at it again, shrugged and laughed:

Awesome!  We're taking it old school now!

 . . . tee hee!

He then spent the remainder of the evening making plans for when we go broke and have to live in a tent, which Elliot sees as inevitable because, according to him, his mom is too lazy to get a real job and his dad is, and I quote, "a washed-up businessman".  

. . . tee hee!

What a kid!  I wish I could crawl into his brain and spend just one day seeing the world through his eyes.  I am sure it would be completely nonsensical and yet, completely wonderful at the same time.  Come to think of it, though, perhaps I do live in that very same world, and I must say, the view isn't too bad from here.



Happy Friday everyone!







Thursday, 21 February 2013

On the Bright Side

I hate being sick!  I hate not being able to care for my family.  I hate seeing important stuff like school, laundry, and groceries fall by the wayside, and I hate sleeping my days away. Our life is not that exciting, but I love every stinking moment of it, and it really brings me down when I can't be a part of it.

grrrrrrr . . .

Yesterday, in spite of feeling crummy and grimy, I made a promise to myself that I would just roll with the punches. I would not fret that my boys had only cereal and Eggos to eat or that they had packed in a year's worth of screen time in just one day. I would not freak out that our four year old refrigerator had just died and everything in the freezer had defrosted.  I would not cry that in my feverish state and with my hubby in class all afternoon, I would have to clean out the freezer all by myself in order to rid my house of the awful odour seeping from it.  I would not complain that thanks to one of my most recent grand ideas, where I allowed our dishwasher detergent to run out so that the kids could start doing the supper dishes and learn a valuable life skill, I now had to wash all those containers by hand. Nope. I was going to be cool with it all, and for the most part, I was.

I laid in bed and watched Netflix on my computer.  I got up, emptied out the freezer, and sent the boys on five trips to the compost bin.  I went back to bed.  I slept for two hours.  I woke up and put all the containers in the dishwasher and texted Mr. Level-Headed to bring home some detergent . . . tee hee! I laid on the couch and watched a movie with the boys.  I slept some more. I texted Mr. Level-Headed again to convince the repairman that we cannot wait until Monday as he originally told me, to bring home supper, take Avery to an activity at our church, pick Zoe up after volleyball practice, then help run the activity at our church because we were short a person, get a few groceries and finally, come home and give me some much needed attention.  I really have the best husband in the world!

Finally, night came.  Mr. Level-Headed put the groceries away, Zoe went on a tirade about how it had been the worst day ever (Really? I would know nothing about days like that), and the boys jumped, squealed and ran around the living room until they were eventually safely secured under all their pillows and blankets.  I dragged my warm, lifeless body to our bedroom.  I managed to get my jammies on but that was it.  As I came out of our bathroom, I saw Mr. Level-Headed kneeling in prayer. I don't know if you have ever walked in on someone as they are praying, but it is a humbling experience. I remember walking in on a co-worker once while we were away on a work trip, and the sight stopped me dead in my tracks. I had not prayed in years, and seeing this woman, who I barely knew, kneeling by her bed, unconcerned that I may see her, touched me.  In fact, it touched me so much, that when I returned home from our trip, I began to pray again, and it was those prayers that started me on my journey to becoming a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. There is power in prayer! But, that is a whole other blog post, one that I am not ready to share just yet, but if you are interested, message me, and we can talk.

Anyhoo . . .

Seeing my husband kneeling in prayer, humbled me. Being sick, all I had thought for the past two days was how this illness had inconvenienced me and how it had been really tough on me.  I had not, up to this point, thought about how it impacted my already very busy husband, who unlike me, had not even complained once.  So, I turned myself around and headed back into the bathroom, where I knelt down beside the bathtub and prayed.  And that's all it took for me to be able to put a positive spin on this most miserable day. Sure, our school week has been pathetic, we have not eaten a home cooked meal in two days, and I am pretty sure everyone is wearing their last pair of undies, but:

  • After playing four hours of Mindcraft, the boys were finally able to find a precious stone they have been looking for.  Mission accomplished!
  • I have been complaining that I needed to clean out my freezer for the past three months and now it is finally done.  Yay!
  • Betty finally kicked Don's cheating butt out of the house. (yet another Mad Men reference) You go girl!
  • We finally have dishwasher detergent once again!!!!!  What was I ever thinking!


Mr. Man woke up "not feeling well", but miraculously, as soon as school was cancelled and a few video games were played, he felt better . . . tee hee!

Picture this along side a counter filled with Rubbermaid containers . . . eeeek! No wonder I caved.  


Mr. Level-Headed's idea.  We put bowls of snow in the fridge to help keep the few things left in our fridge cool.

Look at how clean my freezer is!

All in all, I really had nothing to complain about, and the best part is that today is looking even brighter: my fever has broke and the repairman is coming.  

Hallelujah!



  







Wednesday, 20 February 2013

Sick Day

It is so ironic that the day I make a shout out about how much I love homeschooling is the day that I get sick.  It was bad!  I kept feeling worse as the day rolled on, and Avery sensing there was a wounded member in our pack, jumped at the opportunity to claim the alpha position. He yelled, he whined, and he flat out refused to do his work until this mama found his weak spot and went for the kill. Yes, I pilfered his bag of goodies that Grammie gave him the other day and told him he could have one treat after each completed assignment was inspected by me. This made him mad, but his love for all things sugary won out and he caved. Oh, and just so you know, this was not bribery, this was positive reinforcement.  Being a good parent is all in how you word things.  




When the boys finally finished their work, they headed outside to play in the snow.  It was a beautiful day, and when they came in they were all sweaty, red-faced, and worn out. Exactly how this mama likes to see them.  Unfortunately, Scout did not fare so well.  The snow balled up on his long belly fur, and he came in looking like an abominable snow puppy.  The poor thing!




In the end, I became sicker and our day eventually came to a close . . .  thank heavens! I have never been so happy to see Mr. Level-Headed walk in the door. Unfortunately, I am still feeling crummy today and we have run out of candy. This could get ugly, folks.  Wish me luck!

Oh, and don't even get me started on the foolishness of our school district's failure to cancel school, my lack-lustre attempt at rebellion and my eventual surrender . . . eeek!  I should just stay away from all forms of social media when I am sick.   


Happy slush/rain/snow . . . ugh . . . just another day in NB kind of day!

Tuesday, 19 February 2013

Is It Worth It?

The other day, a friend of mine asked me how I felt about homeschooling.  The minute she asked me, I chuckled and paused.

I don't know.

I guess I haven't thought much about it because I am too busy doing it.  Truth be told, though, I miss sending them off to school.  I miss having the entire day to myself.  I miss how clean and organized my home was when they were in school. I miss meeting up with Mr. Level-Headed for lunch dates in the middle of the week. I miss all the activities I was involved in when they were in school.  At one point, I was doing karate three times a week and playing soccer in the evening with the kids.  It was an incredible two years!

But, my boys were suffering, one boy in particular, and so things had to change.  It was hard giving up my "me" time, but I enjoyed it while it lasted, and I know it will come around again.  

For now, I am knee deep in hands-on parenting once again.  My bed is always covered in piles of clean clothes at the end of the day.  The dust bunnies are building forts in every corner of my house, and sometimes, if I am motivated enough (and that is rarely) I can squeeze a half hour run in my day.

But as tough as it is, I am happy.  Sure, those two years were lovely and I look fondly back upon them often, but THIS is what life is about: getting your hands dirty, making mistakes, dragging your exhausted body to bed day after day, and spending every waking minute with those that matter most.

Homeschooling is the most frustrating, the most difficult, and yet most highly rewarding thing I have ever done in my life. I actually love it!

I love watching my boys play together and grow closer and closer each day:


I love watching them learn, especially those times when we close our text books, they get their hands dirty and create something they can be proud of:








I love being there to witness those moments when they master something that once was hard for them.

Elliot's biggest struggle is writing, but here he wrote a paragraph in ten minutes.  His paragraph had a topic sentence, was logically laid out and included varied sentence structure. I was so proud of him!


And I LOVE coming across all their inventions, their maniacal plots, and their booby traps:


Avery managed to set up this Nerf gun so that when you opened their bedroom door, it shot you. The crazy thing is that it worked!  But it also broke the coat rack that it was hanging from . . .  grrrrr!


Yes, for now I can honestly say that I love homeschooling and that it was worth hanging up my karate gi, my soccer cleats, and my mop to have my days filled with surprises, excitement, and these two boys:



That being said, two years from now, when I send them along their merry way to middle school and high school, I will be the one dancing in her slippers and housecoat at the end of the driveway shouting:

It's the most wonderful time of the year!

 



Monday, 18 February 2013

And The Winner Is . . . .

I can't believe today is the day I get to announce the  winner of our giveaway. 

Now, before we get down to our giveaway business, bare with me as I do a quick run-through of what is becoming a weekly event in this part of the world, the Sunday Snow Storm.

When you coop four Websters and a Skov up in a small house for any amount of time, it is inevitable that a competition of some sort is going to break out, but yesterday, we went over-the-top even for us.  Yesterday, will go down in history as the first ever Shenanigans Inc. Olympics. It was ridiculous!

It all started out when the kids decided to tie each other up and see who could break out of their bonds the fastest.





And the winner is . . .

ELLIOT!

Yep, Elliot broke out at 1 minute and 30 seconds, Avery had to be cut out at 2 minutes because he started to freak out, and Zoe did it in 2 minutes and 30 seconds.

tee hee!

I love my kids!

Then, because two wee Websters were walking away with bruised egos and felt an overwhelming need to redeem themselves, Elliot was challenged to an arm wrestling match.

And the winner is . . .



Elliot!

The winner of this match was . . .


Zoe!

And this one . . .


Zoe!

Of course I had to jump in on the action.  This battle actually lasted awhile, but in the end, the winner was . . .


Zoe! 

grrrrrrrrrrr!

Then both boys thought they would try and take Mr. Level-Headed down.


Nope.  That wasn't going to happen.


tee hee!

With the feats of strength completed, we moved onto to not one but two board games.  Avery won Seafarers of Catan, after his mama made a controversial move and traded him a brick for a sheep, which allowed him to build one final city to win the game.  Oh, the Websters were ticked!  Our next board game was the Harry Potter version of Clue, and and the winner was . . . Zoe!  Avery and I always guess way to early, Elliot gets lost along the way, and in the end it always comes down to Zoe and Mr. Level-Headed rushing to Dumbledore's office with the correct answer. Why do we even bother!

At the moment, the standings for the first ever Shenanigans Inc. Olympics are:

Zoe - 4 wins
Elliot - 2 wins
Avery - 1 win
Mr. Level-Headed - 1 win (I guess we could make that 3 wins since Zoe and I refused to challenge him in an arm wrestling match)
and
The Mama - 0

Ugh!

The Skov loses again.

Now, for what you have all been waiting for! I just have to say that I have the best readers in the world! I know this blog is silly, sometimes self-indulgent, and almost always sappy, and so I feel I must thank you for putting up with me and playing along. You guys rock!  Oh, and I had so much fun hosting this giveaway that I am sure we will be having another one in the near future. We need something to boost our spirits amidst all this snow.

Drum roll please.

And the winner is . . .





Karen Vickers!!!!!!!!

Congratulations, Karen! Message me and I will make arrangements to get your lovely, homemade cards to you.

Wasn't that fun!

Happy Snow Day, everyone!




Friday, 15 February 2013

Dropping Bombs and Cross Stitching


These are a few of my favourite things . . . .

Since we have yet another quiet weekend ahead of us, I am itching to get crafty.  I am itching to do a project.  Lately, I have been working on my cards and the month before Christmas I was a sewing fool, but I want a different kind of project now. I saw a friend of mine knitting a pair of mittens the other day at soccer and I began salivating. Oh, I wish I could wield a pair of knitting needles like it is nobody's business, but I can't.  I have tried, and I just can't seem to make them work or create anything other than a scarf.  Nope, knitting is out.  So, I got it in my head that I should do a cross stitch. I haven't cross-stitched since University, when the girls and I would all cram into a tiny dorm room, watch Melrose Place, smoke cigarettes and cross-stitch. Eeeek! Did I just drop that bomb?  Well, it is out there.  Yes, I used to smoke in University, and truth be told, I loved every gosh-darn minute of it.  Crazy, right?  Yes, it is.  And disgusting.  And it is the one thing that I have told my children that if they ever do, I will beat them until they are black and blue.  It's my job.  I do the stupid stuff in life and they learn from my mistakes.  Sounds good to me!

Anyhoo . . .

Where was I before I dropped that bomb?

Right, cross-stitching!

So yesterday, armed with my birthday, gift cards from Fabricville, I went searching for a cross-stitch and I was utterly disappointed.  I'm really not into the winter scenes, the tiger faces or the busy Italian streets . . . eeek!  But, I did not let that get me down.  Armed with a renewed determination to find my cross-stitch, I went to Indigo books (yet another birthday gift card that is burning a whole in my pocket), and much to my dismay, they had NOTHING!

 No cross-stitch books?  What is this world coming to?

Thankfully, I bumped into a like-minded crafter, who happened to be buying a knitting book.  Again, I began to salivate, and told her all about my love-hate relationship with knitting. She consoled me and then asked about the projects I had on the go.  I told her all about my cross-stitching woes, and like an angel, who was sent down from the Heavens to boost my spirits and lighten my way along the path to cross-stitch nirvana, she imparted a secret, THE secret.

No one uses books anymore.  All the patterns are on the Internet AND many of them are free.

I could have kissed her right there in the middle of Indigo, right on the lips.  (and no this is not another bomb that needs to be dropped . . . tee hee!)  But I restrained myself and thanked her profusely.

The Internet!  This had never even occurred to me because the last time I cross-stitched, the Internet was just getting going and really was not user-friendly.  So, although I was frustrated that I was going home empty handed, I was hopeful that I would find a pattern of awesomeness on the Internet as soon as the kids went to bed.

Nine o'clock finally came.  We read our scripture, said our prayers, doled out our kisses, and I was out of there!  I grabbed my jammies, brushed my teeth, and hopped into bed with the laptop.  Mr. Level-Headed joined me and asked what I was doing.  I told him all about my grand plans and the heavenly messenger that was sent my way . . . tee hee!  Then, we got down to business.  Not valentine business like the rest of the world, but searching for cross-stitch patterns kind of business (that Mr. Level-Headed, he is one lucky man).  Tired of scrolling past more winter scenes, more tiger faces, and even more busy Italian streets, I found a site called Subversive Cross-Stitch, and I was intrigued.  I opened it up, and immediately, I knew I had found cross-stitch nirvana.  This site was filled with pages and pages of brightly coloured cross-stitch patterns, some with hearts, some with tiny birds, and all of them bearing a message with the F-bomb right there in the middle of all their cuteness.  Mr. Level-Headed and I laughed, and laughed and laughed.  I am talking about tears rolling down your face, belly-aching, laughs.

They are so you!  

And here is where I drop another bomb:

 I, Krista Skov-Nielsen, a loving wife, a doting mother of three, and a devout Latter-Day Saint woman  LOVE the f-word.  

And truly, when I say, LOVE, I mean LOVE.  I LOVE how it rolls off my tongue when I am in the midst of the deepest turmoil, I LOVE how Mr. Level-Headed laughs his butt-off whenever I let one drop, and I LOVE how it makes me erupt into fits of giggles whenever I hear other well-intentioned, straight-laced people like myself, slip one out. It is truly my favourite word!  

Now, don't get me wrong.  I do not use it all the time. In fact, I really try not to use it, and I hate when people just throw it out there, flippantly, and use it in everyday speech. No, this word needs to be treated with respect.  It needs to be carefully guarded and reserved strictly for those all too real, way too heavy, human moments that leave you stripped of all strength and self-control.  And it is in these moments, and only these moments, that I LOVE to utter it.  

Now, some of you may be asking yourself: 

How can she call herself a devout Latter-Day Saint if she swears like a long shoreman?

Well, you have a point. Can I call myself a devout follower of Jesus Christ when I have so many obvious faults? Can I truly call myself a Mormon when I jokingly muse that in heaven I will be the one wearing a muumuu, drinking coffee, smoking cigarettes, watching soap operas and dropping the occasional F-bomb?

I really hope the answer to all of these questions is yes because I believe it is.  Religion and faith are not reserved for those elite few who have achieved perfection in this world.  In fact, if that was the case, religion would not exist.  We all have weaknesses.  We all have limitations.  We all make mistakes, and God loves us all the more because of them.  And contrary to what you may think, it is those who go to Church, who know this.  They know they are weak.  They know they make mistakes, and they know that they can't make it in this world without Him.

God knows who I am.  He knows the path I have travelled.  He has been there to celebrate my victories, and He has been there to pick me up and brush me off when I fall, which is a lot.  This is what religion and faith are all about: believing in God, believing in His unconditional love for us no matter how weak we are, and believing that no matter how wide we allow the divide to grow between who we are and who we can be, He will always be there by our side, cheering us on and encouraging us every step of the way.

So, the answer is yes.

I, Krista Skov-Nielsen, can be a loving wife, a doting mother of three, a devout Latter-Day Saint Woman, and a lover of the F-bomb.

PDF: Curses
You can find your subversive cross-stitch here
And I really hope that none of you think any less of me because of it.



Why, do I feel this overwhelming need to share EVERYTHING?

 . . .  tee hee!

Happy Friday, everyone!











  








Thursday, 14 February 2013

Happy Valentine's Day!

Happy Valentine's Day!

You may be surprised to learn that the girl who goes over-the-top in just about everything in life enjoys a more simple and subtle approach to Valentine's Day: a handful of pink, heart-shaped valentines adorning our walls and windows, homemade cards, cheesy Valentine surprises for the kids, and a big smooch for my main squeeze (who is taking me away for a night in two weeks . . . woohoo!).  Top that off with the sugar cookies (gluten-free, of course) the boys and I plan on baking this morning, and I think we've got ourselves a pretty awesome Valentine's Day.  




All the kids' treats have funny sayings on them like: 

You're soda awesome! (the Coke)

You are one pop-ular kid! (the popcorn)

You are extra special! (pack of Extra gum)

You melt my heart! (the M&M's)

I found this idea on this blog, if you are looking for a quick, but cute Valentine's Day gift for your littles.  Elliot is going to freak when he sees the pop and the popcorn!  I think this day could possibly trump Christmas in his books.




What are your plans for Valentine's Day?

Wednesday, 13 February 2013

What I Fear Losing the Most

What a fascinating concept.

or in my case, write about . . . tee hee!

Yesterday, as I was preparing my first assignment for familyshare.com (woohoo!), I came across this quote on Pinterest (and yes, being on Pinterest was part of the job). It really hit a chord with me because I had spent the entire day trying to figure out how I could capture all the awesomeness of our day. Nothing special happened. In fact, I wasn't even in the greatest mood and I had to sneak off a couple of times to squeeze a little cry out.  Why?  Well, let's just chalk it up to being a woman and that, sometimes, I feel life very intensely. I can't say I was sad because there were so many times yesterday my heart brimmed with joy, but maybe that was just it.  Sometimes when we are so close to exactly what we have always wanted, we also become acutely aware of just how fragile it all is. And I think this is why I had to cry, to release the fear of losing all of this someday and to have it all become nothing but a fading memory.

Like I said, nothing spectacular happened yesterday, but right now, the ebb and flow of our days are truly magical.  They are peaceful, and they feel right. 

I woke up and while Mr. Level-Headed was in the shower, I went out and made his and Baby Girl's lunch.  Then I threw supper together and dumped it in the Crockpot.  (A dear friend of mine shared this secret of success with me years ago, and it makes all the difference in the world.  Supper needs to be made in the morning.  Trust me!) I kissed them goodbye as they made their way out the door into the cold dark morning. Then I straightened the kitchen up and went back to my room, where I said a prayer, read my scriptures, made my bed and wrote my blog post.  This is my favourite time of the day! The day has just begun, the house is quiet, and I am all alone with nothing but my thoughts, my photos, and my laptop.

Then, the boys woke up.  They each came in for a snuggle before they headed off to the shower.  I finished my post and made our breakfast.  Then, as I got my shower, the boys began their morning routine, which includes reading scriptures (They are half way done the Book of Mormon. I am so proud of them!), making their beds, and cleaning up their bathroom. When they were done, they ran to the basement for their half an hour of screen time.  This is their favourite time of the day!

When I finally emerged from my room, coiffed and ready, I noticed that Elliot had stacked all of our homeschool books on the table.  He is finally getting into the groove of this crazy homeschooling thing, and nothing could make me happier!  Then I called the boys up and we started school.  The boys worked on their cursive, spelling and grammar, while I made pizza for lunch.  The house smelled divine!

After lunch, I taught the boys their math lesson.  Avery's lesson was on probability and included playing dice games.  He was over the moon excited!  Elliot's lesson was on organizing, plotting and interpreting data.  Needless to say, he was less than thrilled . . . tee hee! Then they read and practiced piano, while I cleaned up the lunch dishes.

Finally, it was piano time.  I dropped them off at their lesson and returned home to start working on my new writing assignment.  Then before I knew it, it was time to pick them up again.  I brought the boys home and they decided to go out and play in the snow.  Just then, my mom called and so I curled up in bed and talked to her for an hour.  Now, it was time to pick up Zoe from piano (the bus drops her off).  

As soon as Baby Girl entered the house, the craziness picked up.  She may not be the wild child of our house, but she is definitely a catalyst for the wildness.  Everything seems to get louder and busier the minute she returns.

Initially, I had planned to have an Indian curry chicken dish for supper, but while I was talking to mom, she reminded me that it was pancake Tuesday. So, I put the chicken in the fridge for tomorrow, and tried a new gluten-free pancake recipe (our first recipe was less than successful). It was a hit! As we slurped on our strawberry smoothies and scarfed down our syrup-sloppy pancakes, we laughed and shared stories about our day.

When supper was finished, the boys and I decided to go out and have a snowball war, while Baby Girl studied for her social studies test.  The night was perfect!  The sun was just setting behind the hill that overlooks our house.  The air was crisp, and you could smell the water in the air from the rain showers we had earlier in the day.  The snow was wet and easy to clump, perfect snow-ball making snow.  The boys and I threw snow at each other, we hid in the forts they made earlier, and we made daring escapes down the hill on our sleds.  One of these escapes, involved me sliding backwards down the hill with Scout on my lap . . . eeek!  Long story! When I returned to the top and after the boys tried to recreate my epic (their words not mine) slide, we made snowballs and stored them in the forts to ambush Mr. Level-Headed with when he returned home from school.

Eventually our mittens became soaked and our toes became too cold, and so we returned to the house.  I finished up the rough draft of my assignment, while the boys ate popcorn and watched some Batman cartoons.  As I was cleaning up the kitchen for the gazillionth time that day, I saw Mr. Level-Headed pull into the driveway. Ugh!  Of all nights, he came home early.

I greeted him at the door and whined that he had spoiled our plans. He laughed.  Baby Girl was finally done studying and came out to tell him all about her day.  Then the boys rushed up the stairs, shouting about our snowball war and the forts they had made and all about their Xbox adventures. 

This is how we greet Mr. Level-Headed everyday. It must be a little overwhelming, but he never complains.  He laughs, he nods, and he assures us that it sounds like we had a great day. 

While Mr. Level-Headed unpacked his bags and hung up his work clothes, the boys sat down to paint the clay bowls they made the day before for our study of Ancient China. As soon as they were done, we scooted them off to get their jammies on and to brush their teeth, and we all slipped into our bedtime routine.  

Each  night we meet in the boys room, where Mr. Level-Headed reads a scripture and explains it, while the boys hang upside down in their beds and Zoe cuddles with Scout on the floor. Mr. Level-Headed always looks up at me, smiles and asks:

Do you think they get it?

Sure.

And I can't help but smile back at him.  

Then we all kneel together and say a prayer.  I kiss the boys goodnight and Mr. Level-Headed gives them their knuckle-bumps. I say goodnight to Zoe, who then packs up her bags for the next day and continues to tell her dad all about her volleyball or soccer practices.  I turn off the lights in the main room and head to bed.  As soon as Mr. Level-Headed and I are in bed, I finally ask him how his day was and he always answers in the exact same way:

uneventful.

So, then I go on more about my day.  I vent my concerns and my frustrations and elaborate on any grand ideas that I may have conjured up.

Then I turn out the light.

Don't forget my kiss!

Do I ever?

Nope.

I love you, Babe.

I love you, Beautiful.

Goodnight.

Goodnight.

And we each roll over and fall asleep.

I know this can't last forever.  The ebb and flow of our days will eventually change.  The kids will grow up, and we will grow old.  Don't get me wrong, though, I am excited for the time when it is just Mr. Level-Headed and I once again, but I really like where we are right now.  And so, I take a million pictures each day and I spend my mornings writing down everything no matter how foolish or how insignificant it is because it is all this, with all of them in it, that I fear losing the most.















Go on, take a look at your photographs, what do you fear losing the most?

And don't forget to like, share, comment, or retweet this post to get your name in our draw.  There are only three more days left.