and all those pretty things

so we are off this afternoon for a few days of camping. i just reread my last post and thought about today. right now i am sitting at the kitchen table sipping a hazelnut latte after having had almost 8 hours of sleep and realizing that later today i will be walking in the woods. what a difference a day makes. now if only my laptop battery was better (i am looking at you jennica)then i could watch arrested developement while walking in the woods thereby reaching some sort of perfection plateau...sigh. i guess the campfire will suffice and cohen can be pretty witty.

so look for us back on wednesday with maybe some video and definately some pictures.


excuse me, do these effectively hide my thunder?

things have been pretty quiet around these parts the last few days. thursday was the first day in a long time that we never left the house, not even for a coffee. i just didn't have much energy in me. i wasn't sure what to do with the day but sometime around noon i remembered that jennica lent me the first season of arrested development and so i popped it in the cd drive and sat back with my glass of grape juice and an open mind. for those of you that haven't seen this yet, you must. it brought me so many belly laughs on an afternoon where i didn't think that was possible. funny funny stuff. i am lucky the grape juice made it down everytime. there were some pretty close calls.

so last night found us at our favourite friday night location, canadian tire. there is something cathartic about that place for us, so many aisles, the smell of new car, the cleaning supply department with shelves 10 feet high, filled with brightly coloured bottles. plus it is open late.
our latest obsession has been wandering the aisles of their kitchen supplies. the stainless steel utensils begging us to ask "what is this for?". there are still one or two we have absolutely no clue about. there was a moment last night, while staring at food processors, where we said "is this what our life has come to? canadian tire on a friday night?" after careful consideration though i have decided that i am okay with that. it is a compromise between the urban/martini/boutique shopping and the superstore/back yard barbeque/suburb equation. at least that is what i will keep telling myself.

it is 7 am right now and i am sitting here at the kitchen table contemplating the day. if i had it my way it would involve 5 more hours of sleep, a large hazelnut latte followed with a leisurely stroll in the woods. i don't think that is going to happen.instead my son, whom i love dearly, has once again decided that sleeping is for wussies and is grunting over there in his chair. i will attempt to coax him with some rocking in a minute. if it doesn't work then i may drag us over to the trout lake market, squinty eyed and grouchy, a hazelnut latte firmly gripped in my right hand. well i will be grouchy, you can be sure he will be smiling and giggling all the way, which just might make this no sleep business worth it. still, five more hours would be nice.


i keep dreaming you'll be with me and you'll never go

taken at elton and jody's wedding last month
stephanie, jody (stephanie's twin sister), my brother elton, jeff

sometimes it is difficult to find the words, the letters seeming insignificant and small. sometimes the air is so thick with emotion that breathing is a chore. life isn't fair. that has never been a secret, i know. when i was four it meant that i had to share my favourite toy with the girl next door, when i was ten it meant believing that i had no friends, when i was eighteen it meant losing a boy or failing at something, a class, a job, or the ability to fit in. now adays it means something bigger, darker. it makes me long for those days of unfairness, to have them for only a moment to take away this place here where truely unfair lives.

by my age we have all had an experience. for me they read like a roster; a classmate drove off a cliff the year after graduation, my grandma at 69 from cancer, my aunt's husband, drown just off shore as she watched on their honeymoon, a coworker of an aneurism at 48, my daughter only hours after she was born. for each one the reality of death becomes clearer. the fragility of it all more obvious. two years ago i had three friends lose their parents in one year. two moms and a dad. i felt like i was being sent a message, it could be your mom next. i pleaded with whoever it is that listens that no more messages be sent. let's just set life on cruise control and make it through this decade ok, all of us. i couldn't handle anymore death.

it was not to be.

earlier today the world lost another great man and my heart feels heavier tonight because of it. jeff was killed while at work today, a scaffolding fell and now he is gone. he leaves behind his son nate who will be two at the end of october and his wife stephanie. it took only a moment for everything to change. i would give anything to take that moment back, but that is the tricky thing about moments, they only happen the once. and sometimes that one moment goes on to last a lifetime.

you will be missed jeff. as much as you were loved. may you rest in peace.


i don't know what takes hold out there in the desert cold

well that went so much better than i expected. i was so nervous going there. you would think i was nervous about my son being jabbed with a sharp needle and the aftermath that would inevitably bring but i wasn't. well not mostly. mostly i was nervous about the confrontation i might have to face. i was wrong though...again. it turns out the nurse is friends with our doctor and she didn't mind one bit that we had chosen to delay a couple of the vaccinations. in fact i would almost say she understood (shudder).

she suggested that i feed him while she gave the needle (one in each leg) and so we did. the first one his eyes went wide when the needle went in but he only let out a small squeak and then the needle was out and he was fine. marko and i laughed. wow! that was easy we thought. then we switched sides and the second needle went in. this time he wasn't as understanding. it turns out that he thought the first one was a mistake but the second one was clearly intentional and he was not impressed. but still the wailing only lasted a minute and then he forgot what it was he was crying about. and so i never cried and we made it out alive with only two shots and no broken hearts. thank goodness.

well don't you know that it's a fool who plays it cool

so this morning it was the usual, up at 5 wide eyed and alive and i thought "oh no, it's permanent!" and grudgingly dragged myself up and over to the crib where i smiled and uttered good morning. it seemed as though the fate of my morning was settled. so i fed him and changed him and sang hey jude for a bit (it's one of his favourites but why i started singing a beattles song in the first place i will never know, maybe it got stuck in my head after reading some gossip about jude law on one of those trashy blogs?). then much to my amazement he closed his eyes, tilted back his head and fell asleep. i doubted the authenticity of this "sleep" and so i stayed up to make sure it lasted. there is nothing worse than waking after 15 minutes of sleep. by 6 he was still out cold though so i cuddled in next to him and fell back asleep. the next time i opened my eyes it was almost 11! oh glorious monday! i guess he just likes to party on the weekend.

tonight while we were having our bath i was running the washing machine. it is one of those front loading ones with the window in the front so that you can see all the suds. every since we moved in here galena has been suspicious of the thing, often peering from the door frame and then backing away slowly when she sees the spin and hears the whirl. on more than one occasion it has caught her completely off guard and sent her running under the bed, wide eyed and alert. tonight though i learned that cohen is not like galena at all, he loves the machine. it is better than any mobile/toy/face or combination within. as we splashed and blew bubbles at each other he became transfixed by the spinning. his eyes glazed over, his stare unwavering. the thing that was really great though is that every now and again the machine stops spinning, a coffee break if you will, and in those moments he would stop looking and immediately look at me with his lower lip extended in a pout his eyes starting to squint ever so slightly. he was getting poised for a fit. but just as the tears started to surface the familiar whirl of the machine filled the room again and he grinned and giggled and then locked his eyes back on the robot. we kept the game up for a good 20 minutes. i think tomorrow i will just sit him in his chair in front of the machine and listen to him laugh and cry all day long. this parenting stuff is easy.

tomorrow we go for his immunizations. tonight i am putting it out of my mind. logically i know that every kid (almost) does it and that it is "no big deal" and yet still that offers me almost no comfort. thankfully i have an appointment at the end of the day so marko is coming with me. i am going to need the support both emotionally and verbally as we have decided (in conjuction with our doctor) to delay two of the four shots until he is one. i know we are going to experience some serious resistance from the health unit nurse. no one resists resistance quite like marko though. i am going to savour it, as this may end up being the one and only time that is actually a good thing. wish us luck.


maybe you'll rest sometime, i wish i could

so cohen woke up with the birds again today and once again he wasn't interested in going back to sleep. i took it a little better this morning because i saw it coming. yesterday was an ambush attack, his energy striking me out of nowhere. if i had been wiser i would have retired earlier last night, that way when i woke to his giggling and it was still dark out i would have had enough sleep to fight off that nauseous feeling that comes when you haven't had any. not that i am complaining (although it sure does sound like it) as i know i have had it easy so far. it is shameful how easy really. so if he wants to play peek a boo and laugh at me that early then so be it. i have learned my lesson and i will sleep right after i am finished this. then hopefully in the morning i will be laughing too (although it would be okay if he went back to sleeping in!).

after having a brief mid morning nap today i decided that i felt like getting out and doing something. well if i was being honest i was struck with a need to participate in some commerce, that is i wanted to shop. i hate to use that word, it feels so dirty. i didn't necessarily want to buy but to look, to wander, perhaps if time alotted even meander. i debated going to metrotown or downtown but neither seemed appealing. strange how the superstore somehow did though? so i trekked down to marine drive and wandered the aisles for a couple of hours staring at labels and trying to decipher their elaborate pricing scheme. i went alone and left my boys home to fend for themselves. i think that sometimes when i am here i step in too much, try and do it all and so it is nice to leave them here alone without me meddling in their way.

so of course the superstore was a wholly unsatisfying experience. but that's ok i knew it would be, it is part of the superstore deal. i only had a couple of people smash their carts into mine as a way of asking me to keep moving and received only about half a dozen nasty looks, so all in all not too bad. i bought some salad dressing, wait no let's call it a vinegarette and it was the highlight of the trip. pear honey they call it, no artificial flavouring or preservatives they claim. i have high hopes. we all know where that leads. i think i will just look at the bottle for a few days and imagine how great it is that way when i actually taste it i will still have the memory of anticipation to wash out the bitter taste of regret. i can hear marko's voice in my ear saying sheesh it is just salad dressing...but is it?

i love you in the morning and in the afternoon, i love you in the evening underneath the moon

so today we slept. i mean we really slept, perhaps more than any one has ever slept before. well ok that may be an exaggeration, a habit of which i think i am prone to, but none the less there was a lot of sleeping and i am simply making sure that point is known. last night however, there was not nearly as much sleeping as one would hope. i think that goes a long ways to explaining todays activities. i don't know why but cohen felt it necessary to whine from his crib every 2 hours last night and no amount of singing, rocking, or feeding was going to put him back to sleep. he was a man with a mission and that mission was to drive his mom a little crazy. the mission was accomplished.

i silently willed him to fall asleep and lucky for me my wish was granted sometime around 10 am at which point he fell into a deep slumber that lasted most of the day. it was around noon that marko and i decided to join him in bed for a family nap that carried on well into early evening. i couldn't believe my eyes when i awoke and saw the clock. some days are meant to pass without hurrah. today was one of those days.

so i found myself thinking about photographs this afternoon, more specifically what your photographic style says about you. i would hate to think that i am one of those "type" of people who have to find some deep philosophical meaning in everything. sometimes it is fun to ponder though. take me for instance, you may have noticed that i have a tendency towards macro photography, that is i like things up close and personal. if i had a better lense i would get even closer. i like to take the large and see it small, to disect the detail. but there are others who stand back and see the larger picture. they take the shots of the skyline, i take the shot of one window in one building, the horizon reflected in it's pane.

so does this say anything? the obvious answer would be that i only see the individual, i don't see the larger picture, how we all connect. but i am not sure that is true. maybe it is in the detail that i am trying to connect us. this philosophizing is a fairly inexact science i think. but it still makes me wonder if i shouldn't be taking more pictures from "back there" so that one day i can look back and say that i saw the space and where we all fit into it. this is as close as i got today, which i must admit isn't very close at all. i am working on it though.


i find the things that you do will make me feel alright

there is this moment early in the morning when we wake up for the first time, it is usually around 5:30, that cohen will stretch really long with his eyes half open, his limbs loose and heavy, his mouth wide in a yawn. usually i am half awake and grouchy, my head feeling dark and gloomy, but in that moment i smile every time. i think it is because i can see all the years ahead of us when i will wake him up and he will stretch like that and make that grunting sound, the sound of pure satisfaction. he is showing me the future one yawn at a time and from here it doesn't look so bad.

we went out without him last night. both of us. we hadn't done that before and suprisingly i wasn't nervous at all but i am sure that was because we left him with grandma. i survived my childhood with her and came out in one piece so she came with good references. when we got home, just after ten, they weren't around. we thought it was funny that she would take him out for a walk so late and worried that maybe he was crying and she fell on the last resort of a walk. we were wrong though. we knew right away it had gone well when we saw the two of them come through the door both with huge smiles on their faces, giggles coming out of their mouths. something tells me that those two are going to end up pretty good friends.

cohen and i had a bath together tonight. it lasted so long that both of us looked like prunes. i always hate to take him out because it is quite clear that it is his favourite place to be. he kicks and splashes, nose dives and sits with the water half way up his belly grinning and laughing and singing. it has quickly become my favourite time of the day as well, there is no phone, no computer or toys, just him and me and contentment. we took pictures of bathtime tonight so look for the big smiles soon.

speaking of pictures, i uploaded over 50 photos to my flickr account tonight so make sure you head over and have a look. some of them have appeared on the blog but most are new to you. i also finally organized the tags so now you can weed out everyone else and bask in the glory of the 7000 pictures i have of cohen. ok maybe not that many but give me a few more weeks and it should be close.

i almost forgot but i should mention the new look. i decided it was time for a change and so i went for it, hopefully it meets with everyones satisfaction. i also thought it was time to change the name since it really is about cohen now. i had trouble deciding on one but i thought that finding cohen went nicely with looking for galena and so it stuck. plus, it is true i am finding him, little by little everyday. it never gets boring.


oh the places we've been, the people we've seen

so where have we been these last couple of weeks? mostly around the neighbourhood, visiting with relatives and smelling the flowers. here is a pictorial recap of the events that have filled cohen's days and taken me away from the blog.

going for a walk to the community garden with grandma (my mom is now officially grandma to everyone since i am offially mom...sometimes life is just like that!) the sun was setting but cohen was comfy in his pajamas checking out the view.

and perhaps being frightened a little by what he saw!

taking lot's of naps with dad. this usually happens when they are playing a game but dad falls asleep and then cohen get's bored with playing by myself and falls asleep too. i found them like this after it seemed much too quiet in the room!

we had some friends from the building over for a visit. the babies are becoming more aware of each other and it won't be long before they are rolling around on the floor together. sosi is the little girl on the left, she is lori's daughter, next to her is fin and then atticus who were both born 3 days apart back at the end of march/beginning of april, then of course is cohen and last is sean who is the oldest of the bunch and will be 2 in october. as you can see from the picture they each have their own distinct personality!

this is the trio that will one day form the lee building gang (especially now that aja and reid are moving into a bigger place and staying..yeah!). it will be interesting to see who ends up the leader of this pack, it is still much too early to tell but atticus seems to be the charmer, fin the strong athletic one and cohen the deep thinker...together they could get in to some serious trouble!

we also had marko's aunt rada come visit us. she lives in croatia but was here visiting her son on the sunshine coast for 10 days. we were lucky enough to have her come stay with us one night. she loved hanging out with cohen and although he played shy he did let her give him a bath and tons of cuddles. it is too bad she lives so far away!

cohen's aunt laisha also came for another visit as she is down here teaching at ubc for a week. while she was here we went out to uncle elton's place for a visit. cohen got lots of hugs from everyone!

and gave his signature peace sign to the camera

and then got a little tired and whiney (but i still think he looks pretty cute!) of course i am sure that minutes after this was taken he was back to laughing, he is an emotional rollercoaster after all!

although i doubt being choked with a soother by his well meaning cousin kyla brought about too many smiles.

no, it sure didn't (i guess it is safe to say he can't sit up on his own yet!)

then we went out to see grandma's new apartment in tsawwassen. it had a huge backyard with lots of nice grass and so of course we had to sit out on the blanket and look up at the trees. it made me feel sad once again that we don't have a yard here. it just isn't the same going to the park...hopefully one day.

sitting outside is one of cohen's favourite things to do and it almost always leads to big smiles like this

he also spent lots of time kicking back and eating his fist...mmmm fist.

generally looking cute

and of course celebrating having been here with us for two months today. he has gotten so much older, in body and spirit. every day he does something new and amazes me and every morning i look at him and think that i love him a little bit more than the morning before, even when i think that is not possible. i can't believe how fast the time has gone and at the same time i can hardly remember a time without him. so i guess it happened, just like that, i became one of those sappy sachrine dripping "mommies". there is no shame in that. it was inevitable and besides, i wouldn't have it any other way.

welcome to month three little tiger! now that is something to smile about...