Tuesday, February 20, 2018

Planning ahead

Back in late summer, I read an article in a magazine about a college application / educational counseling service called IvyWise.  Since that time, I read more about them with the idea that some early planning would be good for Sophie as we will be navigating college/university admissions in a few years. Both Vic and I made some costly and time consuming missteps in our early post secondary education, and we want the kids to avoid this if possible.   I sent some emails and had a free introductory call with IvyWise before Christmas.  After filling out their online questionnaires (one that Sophie completed, and one that I did), we had our first 90 minute Skype/phone call today with Sophie's new counsellor, Amy.  We learned a lot today about the college admission process in the US (we want Sophie to keep her options open), but Amy also is experienced with Canadian universities as well.  Amy asked a lot of great questions of Sophie and Vic and I, and for an exploratory meeting, I think had some good take-aways.

I'll post more about this as we learn more and get more of a detailed road map to help Sophie as she makes her plans over the next few years.

Sunday, February 04, 2018

Happy 14th Birthday, Sophie!

This is what happens when you blink.  Sophie is 14 tomorrow.

She invited some friends over Saturday night for a bowling party, pizza and cake.  After a couple of hours of bowling the girls asked if they could come back to our house for a bit longer.  Kate, Abby, Felicia, Cami, and Erica (Hunter was busy). 

Today we went skiing...lots of snow which made it somewhat difficult as the runs weren't really groomed.  I think this was our 6th time up this season which isn't too bad.

Vic and I also were able to squeeze in some time with Guy Greavette of Vikings Weightlifting who is helping us with our form/technique as we try to learn Olympic Weightlifting.  Things are coming along....slowly.  The photo of me is an attempt at a Snatch.  A very difficult move at the best of times.

Fynn also played hockey in Lumby and his team had a nice little win.

Saturday, January 20, 2018

Back Squat

Today we had a busy Saturday morning.  Fynn had a hockey game, and Sophie had dance practice.  After hockey, Vic and I headed over to Crossfit for the 3rd annual Crossfit Total where you get points based on your one rep maximum. 

I hit 3 personal bests today:

Back Squat 125 lbs
Overhead Press (strict) 65 lbs
Dead lift 175 lbs

I was happy with all of those numbers, as I consider how far I have come in the past year.

Sunday, January 07, 2018

A well spent weekend

We had a great weekend.  In spite of cold weather and somewhat grey skies we did a lot of fun things to keep ourselves busy and active.  I think we helped end the Christmas break for the kids on a high note.

On Friday afternoon, I had a dermatologist appointment in Vernon.  To make it a bit of a treat for the kids, we went for dinner after I was finished and then headed over to the bookstore in the mall to browse.  I picked up the new Jennifer Egan book.

On Saturday, Vic and I had an Olympic Weightlifting coaching session with Guy Greavette. We have been working with guy since late last summer. This was our fourth time seeing him, and each time we go, we always both feel like we have found his sessions invaluable in correcting our form.

Saturday night, we went to a movie with my work friend Julie and her husband.  We saw Ladybird.  Great movie!

Today we headed up to Silver Star for our 3rd ski day of the season.  It's great to have seasons passes and not have to worry about purchasing lift tickets.

Sunday, December 31, 2017

2018 Family Priority Goals

I've been putting some thought into what would be realistic goals for us over 2018.

  • 2018 will be the year I finally do a strict pull up, do a box jump in Crossfit.
  • I will nourish myself with a lot of water, protein (moderation) and vegetables.
  • I will make more time for rest, reading (even more than in 2017).
  • I will recharge my batteries by resting, massage (I'd like to at least get in a handful of massages this year).
  • This year I will open my heart to my kids.
  • I will pay more attention to my family.
  • I will learn more about:
    1. Taking care of my houseplants.
    2. Sophie's upcoming school years (courses, extra curricular, etc).
    3. Amsterdam (our holiday destination this summer).
    4. I'd like to learn some basic calligraphy.  I've all but "retired" from scrapbooking but I still have a desire to do something creative (besides photography which feels quite technical to me).
  • I will release my attachment to the past. It isn't working for me.
  • I wish for 2018 to feel strong (even physically stronger than 2017). Lighter in spirit, full of wonder, fresh and new.
  • This year I will say NO to being overextended with kids' activities.  I know I think about this every year.  I will also say YES to cutting back on line shopping.  I don't have a problem with this, but having to make returns when things don't work out makes me stressed.
  • This year I will say YES to more joy.

2018 Family Priority Goals - update on 2016 goals/2017 progress

Last year, I don't think I created any Family Priority Goals for 2017.  That was too bad, as I do find that when I can write goals down at the start of the year, they tend to have more likelihood of success.

Here were my goals for 2016:
rThings that make me happy:
- learning new things (Learning to play the piano).  I have had two classes in piano. Certainly harder than it looks.  The kids are taking up most of the weekly piano lessons but I do intend to keep practicing.  Just learning where the notes are is hard enough for me right now.  UPDATE Dec 31/17:  Beyond those 2 lessons, I gave up.  

 - taking photos of our life (Working on what this might look like.  I think I would like to take photos of birds in 2016 -- in addition to the usual subjects I photograph).  This is going along okay.  Nothing earth shattering, although I think I would like to save for a new portrait lens for this year.  The photo below is for a "green" assignment my photo club has going on right now.  Reminds me of spring.  UPDATE Dec 31, 2017:  I didn't do too much photography in the way of birds.  A telephone is what's needed. I did get a nice portrait lens for Christmas 2016 which was put to good use, but not on birds.
 - telling our stories (blogging, etc).  This is slow going.  I was such a good blogger for years, and now if I blog once a month, I am doing well.

 - keeping fit (I don't know exactly what this will be, however, I have told Vic I want to do another 10 km in the fall.  I have also started to intentionally increase my weights in 2/4 weekly fitness classes). This is probably the goal that I am most excited about.  The running is not really coming along for me (weather is usually my excuse).  But, I have been keeping up with my 2 x a week CrossFit Lite classes and I love them!  I even have gotten Vic to come with me for a few of them.  I can see this being the biggest change for me in 2016.  I am actually started to get some arm muscle.  UPDATE Dec 31, 2017:  This goal had the biggest, most life enhacing impact.  Not only did CrossFIt Lite take off for me, I ended up completing the Fundamentals class which led to Vic and I being regular (4-5 times a week Crossfitters), plus we took 3 Olympic Weightlifting coaching sessions last year.  

 - s new places
- seeing the kids achieve more than they could have imagined (this is ongoing.  Sophie has her Grade 1 Piano exam next week. The goal: to complete and pass the exam in January 2016.  So far that is the only goal set).  Sophie did complete her exam and did very well - honours!  Her piano teacher and I have decided that we will delay the next exam (Grade 2) until June 2017 to allow lots of time for her to really learn the material.  UPDATE Dec 31, 2017:  Sophie completed Grade 2 and is on track for completing Grade 3 in June 2018.

Monday, December 25, 2017

Christmas Day 2017

A chilly Christmas Day in Salmon Arm.  About -9 degrees celcius and feels like -15 with a bit of wind.

The kids were up just after 8am.  So nice to sleep in after weeks and weeks of early morning between work, weekend activities (hockey), etc.  We opened presents, had breakfast (eggs and bacon) and lots of coffee and Baileys.  Later in the afternoon, we bundled up and went for a walk.

Tomorrow we head to my mom and dads for a few days to visit with relatives.

Christmas Day has been peaceful and quiet...just the way I like it.

Wednesday, November 15, 2017

Not feeling too well

On the eve of my 50th birthday, I'm recovering from another bladder infection. My second in about 4 weeks.  Now my doctor isn't sure if it is a bladder infection as the last culture wasn't positive, so she thinks I may have interstitial cystitis.  Right now, I'm just relaxing at home on another round of antibiotics (which may be for not if this isn't an infection) and a drug that acts as a painkiller for the bladder.

On happier news, both of the kids have been really on a strong streak in school with each of them getting As or high Bs on a number of their tests and assignments.  It makes me feel good knowing that the extra work I have been putting in showing them how to study and prepare for tests, quizzes and exams is paying off.