The Tweedles

Friday, September 28, 2007

One of the BEST comments ever!

From my wonderful friend Michelle.

michelle said...
Hey.I know this is in no way related to your Poo-Particles-In-The-Nasal-Passages story.... but....HAPPY BIRTHDAY!!!!There. Now I've Facebooked you, emailed you and posted on here. I've officially happied the crap out of your birthday... tee heelove ya!!


Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Stories from Korea.

Right now it's really late and I can't sleep, so rather than toss and turn I thought I should write.
Lately I've been thinking that I need to record some of my Korea stories for posterity. In truth I am trying to write a long story, recording the whole experience from start to end, however I have run into a few roadblocks. First I've decided to write everything in the present tense, which is difficult. Also it's emotional for me. I discovered some things about myself and about people in general while I was there, and it shook me to the core. I still lament over some decisions I made while I was there and wonder if the outcome could have been better. Anyhow I digress I have a great story for you tonight.
In my opinion for a story to be great it should have one of 3 things. There should be cute children, bodily functions or me going red in the face. This story has them all!
So while I was teaching in Korea I was the only foreigner at my school who would teach the "Puppy Class" which were the 36-38 month old children. I thought that they were the sweetest little kidlets around, and they really and truly liked me and I was more than happy to teach them everyday. The class was comprised of 10 students and I taught them at the end of my kindie shift, and I was their last teacher of the day. In order to make everything smoother I let them play a little more and there wasn't so much teaching happening as playing in English. Which I thought was more than appropriate since they were 3 years old and had been at school for nearly 7 hours. We played modified games of "Red Light Green Light", "Duck Duck Goose" and various singing games that I would make up. Then in August our stingy boss was convinced by us that he should buy the school some play doh for the kids. It was great because it was stifling that August and the kids were listless by my class and it was hard to really motivate them to play an active game. So we often played with play doh, as did many of the other teachers, both Korean and foreign.
Then one particularly hot August day one of the little boys came into my class late, smelling his fingers as the children often did, reveling in the play doh-ey smell. He crawled into my lap, which was empty because I was hot and wasn't in the mood to be climbed all over by hot, sweaty 3 year olds. However I allowed him because he was notoriously clingy and I didn't need a battle at that time, and the other kids were happily playing with my play doh, and didn't fuss that I was playing favorites.
So as this little Korean angel sat in my lap, one hand playing with my hair and the other sniffing his little fingers he looks at me and says in Korean: "teacher, smell", and jams his fingers under my nose. I oblige assuming that they would be play doh-ey and went ahead and took an exaggerated sniff to amuse him. But noooooo, it was not play doh that assaulted my sensitive nostrils. It was much, much more heinous. Fearing the worst I asked him in Korean: "What is that?" He looked up at me, smiling his goofy smile, which smushes his face up, making his eyes perfect little half moons and says (in Korean): "it's poo!"
Suppressing the urge to jump up and dump this little deviant off my knee so I could run out of the room and scrub the poo smell off of my offended nose; I ruffle his hair and made some comment about him being a bowl of cherries and order him, in Korean, to go and wash his hands, with soap.
For the rest of the class all I could think about was that I have done it all as a teacher now. I had smelled the pooey fingers of a student, and I just knew that his other hand was also contaminated, as was my hair. I also lamented that I had to teach for another 5 hours, knowing I had tiny poo particles in my hair.


Monday, September 24, 2007

This is the video for "Believe" by Suzie McNeil. It's the Olympic inspired version. It really makes me want to make sure that I'm in Vancouver in 2010 to cheer on all of the Canadian teams.


Friday, September 21, 2007

Loonie Trumps the Greenback

November 25, 1976 was a historical day in Canada, it was when the Canadian dollar closed higher than the American dollar. Nearly 31 years later, September 20, 2007 the Canadian dollar again is higher than the American dollar. At one point during the day the Canadian dollar was $1.0002 American dollars. However by the end of trading the Canadian dollar did drop to $0.9981 American dollars.
The article quotes Canadian strengths from our exports to promote the jump in the dollar, but I honestly think that it's from the drop in the American dollar. As the war wages it's sucking America dry and weakening it's dollar, which makes the Canadian dollar appear stronger.
(This article backs my theory. Interestingly it is a Canadian source whereas the first is from an American source.)
Now while I would LOVE to gloat, it's really not that great for Canada's economy. Canada does best when it's around $0.80ish to the American dollar because then exporting from Canada is cheaper and a lot of our economy is export. I understand that I am no economist but I did grow up in BC in an area who's main industry was lumber, and growing up I could see the effects of the rising and falling dollar on the local economy. It was really apparent as I was bussed to school passing the local lumber mill, or waiting at the bus stop watching the logging trucks lug on by. When the economy was strong there was a neverending line of logging trucks and the mill had lots full of fresh lumber and the whole area around the mill smelled of woodchips. (Which to this day still reminds me of home.) However when the economy was struggling there were less trucks to entice to blow their horns; the mill lot was full of old lumber and the sweet chippy smell was less intense.
So while yesterday was a great day for Canadian Pride, and really nails home to Adam and I that this is the best time for us to buy a house as large amounts of money will be crossing the border down to us, it does worry me a little. It's best for Canada's economy for our Loonie to be slightly under the Greenback, because that is when we're strongest.

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Tuesday, September 18, 2007

"How much is that baby in the window?"

As you all know I have never been quiet about the issues Adam and I had to get pregnant. Luckily for Adam, it was all me. I had the issues and it really and truly sucked, as much as I laughed about it, making jokes how I could feel the needles catch on my skin as I pulled them out of my belly; the whole ordeal sucked. Every time I found out that a cycle didn't work I would be devastated. Then every time one of my friends had a baby I would be a wreck for a week or so. As much as I was elated for them, I was devastated and imagined a life of needles and more failed attempts, because I knew I would not give up. Anyhow fast forward to now and I am 18 and a bit weeks pregnant. I still have anxiety that something will happen and I won't end up with a baby in my arms. I get really anxious when I haven't felt him move for a couple days, although I know it's normal. (I have never claimed to have rational feelings about any of this getting and being pregnant thing.) So here we are now. I'm pregnant, Adam has a great new job and we're looking at our options for insurance through his new employer. We can have the same insurance that we had at his old job, but it only covers 50% of infertility visits, procedures and drugs. From what I understand a visit to the clinic is $200, and when I am on the injectable drugs I need to go 2-3 times a week. Which is really really expensive if you have multiple failed cycles.
When Adam was telling me all of this I was really upset. It upsets me that I have to struggle to have a baby, and now we will have to pay so much to get pregnant. It's really not fair when I think of all of the people in this world, or even people who've I've encountered in my life who can just have a baby and not understand the importance of that baby. It's not fair.
Then to add insult to injury I read this article. I want those women to be grateful for what they have been blessed with.

Anyhow just something on my mind.


Tuesday, September 11, 2007

If this doesn't bring a tear to your eye, you have a black heart.


Holy Moly! We're Grown-ups!

Or otherwise titled as, "Holy Crap We're Buying a House!" or "You Want How Much For 1600 Square Feet?"

So Adam and I have been looking at townhouses for a long time now. We would go and visit our favourite often, languishing at the stairyness and flatness of the floors. Drooling over a bath tub big enough to bathe a whole family of walruses. Yearning for a double garage wide enough for even me to pull in and out of. However that house was expensive and the practical side of me just couldn't see how we could make it work and still maintain our standard of living. Not to mention jumbo mortgage (anything over 417K) rates have totally tanked, so we would have to wait and see what the market did and hope we could find something in our price range, ie under 417K (after downpayment). So every other weekend or so we would go and check out the new developments and see what they had and what the prices were. We were always drawn to the same builder who's layouts we liked the best, but this builder was staunchy in their stance that they have to increase the prices with each release to ensure that their current owners would feel secure that they weren't losing money. They were so determined to continue to raise prices that soon they weren't selling anything. So Adam and I waited, hoping that they would eventually break and offer a whole pile of incentives or drop prices.
They never did.
Adam did some research and found another builder, and we went and checked out one of their newer sites. They houses would be available next September and they were nearly 150K less than the other builder. However Sept. is too far away and we do not want the baby to be in our current house longer that necessary. We like the Feb./ March move ins that we were seeing a lot of. So we went to this builder's other location (which is next to the other builder who we "visited" a lot.) To our dismay they only had one house left. But to torture ourselves we walked though the show home and LOVED IT! It was practically everything we were looking for. A nice bright kitchen, not in the centre of the house. A perfect main floor with plenty of space for us and a large area for a baby play area, (aka baby cage.) A bathtub large enough for a family of walruses, a huge garage, and a den for guests and the treadmill. It was lovely. But it was the last one.
As we left we decided to talk to the sales people and they told us how to have the place reserved and what the down payment would have to be and how we would qualify for 30K in incentives. (20K from the builder to buy the place and additional 10K from them because of who Adam's new employer is.) So Adam and I left, feeling excited that this place and plotting how we could make it work. We knew that the time line was tight, but we could make it work. When we got home, we laid out the whiteboard and assessed all of the other places, along with the ones available in September. Then we played devil's advocate for all of them. And sure enough the one we loved the most and was the best choice was the one we had seen that day. So the next morning bright and early we went back to the sales office and gave the first part of the down payment to reserve the place for us. We would then have to be preapproved for a mortgage. And just now I found out we were. So we're going to buy a new house! And move in the same month that the baby is born!
I'm so effin' excited I might throw up!

Here's the house.


Sunday, September 02, 2007

Adam's blog.

Hey did you know that my genius husband has his own blog? I think he is a brilliant writer, he's very clear, succinct and interesting. (I don't think I'm being biased either!) Anyhow go and check him out, say hi and come back here and tell me he's brilliant but you still love me.

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This post coming to you as fuzzy black lines.

My glasses are in the other room, and well it's hot and I'm pregnant. Okay, also lazy. Moving on.
First when did I become so blind that I need glasses to see the computer screen well? Damn aging process! Oh well at least it's just a little fuzzy vision, no other things that I am scared of. (arthritis, diabetes all the stuff my grandpa had)

Anyhow today my dear sweet husband bought me two pies, a lemon one and a chocolate one. They were good, I had some of both. My argument was that the baby NEEDED them. Adam couldn't argue. Hmm pies. I have noticed that I have the appetite of a sparrow. It's rather odd and a little disturbing. I can eat half a sandwich and a cup of milk. I guess this is a good habit for me to continue. Perhaps it will after pregnancy also. I'm also a little disturbed at my total and complete distaste for meat. I can eat a little in stuff, like a sandwich, or a ham and pineapple pizza, but the thought of a breast of chicken on a plate makes me a little pukey. So I've ordered some rice protein powder since all I have is soy, and I had to swear off soy while I was getting pregnant. And now I learn that it can interfere with hormones during pregnancy also. Okay. No soy for me, well except soy sauce and miso, 'cause I would not be able to live without miso. (also they are fermented so they aren't as harmful apparently)

So I have been working on this theory that we humans are like dogs, and pure breeding has made us a little volatile. (Pure breeding as in not mixing ethnicities.) I've come up with this when I was diagnosed as being a carrier of Cystic Fibrosis. Whoo hoo! As it turns out I have the worst form of the mutation in my genes, which is the most common mutation. It will never harm me as I am only a carrier, however if Adam is a carrier there is a 25% chance that the baby would have the disease, and a 50% chance that the baby would be a carrier. So Adam was tested and after a week of waiting we were informed that he is not a carrier. So now the baby has a 25% chance of being a carrier and a 1 in 241 chance that the baby will have the disease (from a misdiagnosis on Adam not being a carrier). So I am happy with these odds and moved on. (For the record I didn't really freak out, the genetics councillor that I was talking to was excellent and spelled everything out to me really clearly.)
Anyhow my theory. There was an issue at all because Adam and I are both Caucasian, if either him or I weren't it wouldn't be an issue since this disease is mostly a Caucasian thing. Hence the inbreeding of us white folk*, like Dalmatians. Remember when the movie 101 Dalmatians came out and there was a surge of Dalmatians as a result? Do you also remember all of the reports of viscous Dalmatians as a result of being over bred? It reminds me of this situation, like I said if Adam or I weren't so blindingly white my being positive would have been a non issue.
Oh and lets not forget that the inbreeding isn't only a Caucasian issue, there was a whole list of potential genetic issues that could arise if both parents were of the same ethnicity. Unfortunately I don't have this list in front of me, but it was interesting how every ethnicity had it's own problem. But from my understanding if a Asian woman and an Eastern European man were to have a baby they would have less chance of passing on any genetic disorders because it would be less common for them to both be a carrier of the same issue. Am I making sense? So with the popularity of chihuahuas there are more problems with hips and other issues, but if you were to have a mutt they are generally healthier since it's less likely that a problem would be shared by both parents.
So there you have it, humans as dogs.
Also don't you just think that a blended ethnicity baby is so pretty? Some of the most pretty people in the world are "mixed". It's not to say that my baby won't be pretty, I'm sure s/he will be, but this baby will also have a host of other issues, like looking like the sibling of Casper the ghost. (This baby is going to have really fair skin, like transparent fair.)

*I hate being called white. I'm not white, my skin is not white. It's not appropriate to call people by colours so why is it okay to call me white? I get irritated when I have to check a box on some form and it lists the options, white, African American, Asian, Indian etc etc. No one else is a colour! Okay rant over.

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