Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Crafty and Busy!

Spring is here and we are enjoying it immensely! 

The kids play outside every day with a large group of their friends.  Sleds are flying down the icy hills and all are enjoying the giant snow hill for a while longer.  I have been lounging in the sun on the back deck with friends- the freckles are coming out in full force now!

And I have been back at the crafting!  I didn't do much with my hobby since last summer.  All of my spare time was spent getting ready for my surgery (exercising and prepping meals to make my life easier upon my return), then there was my surgery and recovery.  Finally I am feel nearly back to my crafty self and I am loving it!

In the last week I made six pairs of baby booties, two pairs of baby mittens, three pairs of earmuffs, and am working on a pair of ladies mittens right now.  It feels so great to be back at it!  Plus, tourist season is right around the corner!  My crafts sell really well here in town, both to locals and tourists.  My goal this summer is to save enough from crafting to do the usual of replace my supplies (and buy a few more), but also to put away money to go towards the supplies I need to build a greenhouse for next summer!
A few of the afternoon crew!



A bunch of booties!
 

Earmuffs!  Lynx, Arctic Fox, Fox

Baby mittens!  These were a custom order this week.

Sunday, March 30, 2014

Fun for Boys: Making Superheroes Fly

I had a great idea for a new way to make our superheros fly.  Normally, they are just thrown into the air or through the air aimed at a sibling.

Today I took about 10 minutes to make some yarn ziplines in the backyard and then made some yarn harnesses for IronMan and Captain America.  I rounded up a couple of hooks to attach to the harnesses and done!  Boys are now entertained.


Harnesses and hooks!

IronMan gets his send off.

We do have the perfect yard for this new game.

Captain America zooms through the air!

Unhooking and moving to the next set of lines.
Second level and more ziplines.

Friday, March 28, 2014

Adventure!

Two flights + one new to us car + 2400km of driving + visits with friends and family along the way + "Let It Go" on repeat = a mama on the brink of insanity.

That is how the boys and I spent our spring break!

Friends of ours were selling a small car down in Prince George and we decided to buy it to drive around here in Faro to save miles on the truck and fuel costs too!  I used aeroplan points to fly the boys and I down to Prince George and we left Matt behind in Faro since he had to work.

The trip was a blast!  I went to university in Prince George and I got to spend a couple of days catching up with friends I hadn't seen in over a decade.  There was also family there I got to have a huge turkey dinner with too!

We drove up to Dawson Creek to spend a couple of days with my parents and more visiting with friends and family.  After that it was north to Fort Nelson to see my brother, sister in law, and my three nephews. 

Finally, we made one long haul from Fort Nelson right through to Faro (about 1300km) in one day.  The boys were excellent travellers and I had such a fun time hanging out with them this trip.  We had great conversations, sang a lot, counted different types of vehicles, and enjoyed the fantastic scenery that northern BC and the Yukon have to offer.

Thank you to everyone that let us stay with them, fed us, and met up with us for visits!

And now....  a crap load of photos.  

Dalmatian Puppy and Marno the Marten waiting for our flight.

Future UNBC students in the making!

My beautiful friend Lana met up with us for lunch!
I used to be this lovely lady's Brownie leader and now she is graduating university!

11 years ago Elaina, Mike and I graduated!
The boys and their Great-Auntie!

My cousin and her family!  She cooked the best turkey for us.

Mike teaching the kids about computer games.
I miss these two dorks.  They haven't changed a bit!

The Pine Pass looked menacing, but the the drive was fabulous!

Met a friend from high school for lunch!

I wanted to keep this little gem.  I have known her mama since I was 12.

The boys catching up with their buddy in Dawson Creek!

I love my Auntie!

More Auntie love!!

My cousin and his husband!  Cutest newlyweds ever!
Dog doors are fun!

Grandma and crazy boys.

MY NEW NEPHEW!

Cavan says we need a new baby.

Four not-so-little Hunter Family offspring!

Peace and quiet!

Liard Hotsprings at -15C!

Frosty and perfect.... until it was time to get out!

Why hello there, Mr. Bison!

Ipad in the dark.
Amelia Catcha Car is home in Faro!  The boys assisted in the naming.

Wednesday, March 5, 2014

Spring Is Coming!

Spring is coming!  Well, at least I think it is coming.  It has been cold here lately, but so bright and sunny every day.  With gorgeous weather like this, I have no clue how anyone could be miserable.  How can you not smile and enjoy your day when the sun shines so hard through your windows that you can even let the wood stove go out.  

The temperatures have been around -30C at night and up into the teens during the day.  But by this weekend, it looks like we might see highs of -2C!  Absolutely perfect spring weather. 

I am rather eager for spring to arrive; my to-do list for spring is getting mighty long.  I am looking forward to another summer of gardening (we are still enjoying canning and veggies from the freezer thanks to my garden last year) and also my first try at backyard chickens!  It looks like by-laws are in the process of being changed here in Faro to allow for residents to raise a few hens.  Yippeee!  Matt and I have been looking at ideas for making a little insulated and heated chicken coop for the backyard.  It is going to be a fun undertaking!

And then there is another season of camping!  And quadding!  And fishing!  And hiking!  It is going to be another stellar summer. 

But first, I get to enjoy another Yukon spring.  Our 7th Yukon spring.  It just keeps getting better.

Dreaming of a little birdie supper.

Ice fishing!

Cavan was not impressed that we hadn't caught a fish yet... it had been about 5 minutes since putting our lines in.

Bliss!  Hot tea, a bucket seat, a fire, and being outside.



Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Bum Watch Week 16: Time for a Break

CAUTION!  ME!  NEARLY NAKED!  
THROUGHOUT THIS ENTIRE POST!  
RUN AWAY NOW IF YOU NEED TO!

For the last 16 weeks, I have documented  the highs and lows of recovery from my reconstructive skin surgery.  If you are new here, I have lost a lot of weight over the last two and a half years thanks to the tool of gastric sleeve surgery.  I used to weigh 320lbs.  Thanks to that tool and a lot of hard work I have completely changed my health around.

320lbs.  I was literally as round as I was tall.  My hips were 65" and I am 65" tall.

320lbs.
 Sixteen weeks ago I underwent a lower body lift and an inner thigh lift with Dr. Timothy Katzen in Beverly Hills.  At the time of that surgery I was 190lbs and I had 27lbs of skin and fat removed.  Recovery hasn't been all that easy and I had four spots open up and turn into wounds that required daily treatment with antibiotic ointment and being covered in gauze.  Turns out I am just a slow healer!

Day of surgery and 190lbs.

My old stomach and butt skin!

Miserable with 8 drains, catheter, and pain medications that made me incredible sick.

Over the last couple of weeks though, I have gone from feeling like Frankenstein's monster, to feeling nearly human.  Wounds have closed over and I am no longer treating any of them!  That sure makes the morning routine a lot easier!  I have been monitoring my daily swelling and noticed that it wasn't changing too much from morning to evening.  I have been wearing a full compression suit (aka. the batsuit) that covered me from ankle to chest complete with straps over my shoulders.  It is a miserable contraption, but it has done its job well.  The compression it gave allowed my scars to heal flat and it kept my swelling in check.  Yesterday though, I went without it.  Instead, I just wore a core compression wrap and last night I had zero compression on.  It went very well!  The only spot that is swelling is my waist and it only went up an inch during the run of the day.  Success!  It feels odd to not have the full suit on; my body has just become used to wearing it and clothing now feels very rough against my skin.  But the freedom of not having it on is so wonderful.

The bat suit.


I have some goals now that I am working towards.  I would like to be 160lbs for summer.  It is my dream weight because it will mean I have become exactly half my size.  Never did I think that would actually be possible and now it is just 10lbs away for me.  Ten pounds...  that seems like nothing when I have already lost 150lbs.  And I want to be strong again.  I am a full on weakling after four months of not doing much other than sit on my arse.  Thanks to weekly massages, the tail bone pain I have been suffering from is actually improving.  I have an xray scheduled for it next month and a chiropractor appointment as well. 

I am looking ahead to summer and realizing that it is going to be fantastic.  I am going to be healed up enough to truly enjoy it.  And enjoy it without the constraints of extra skin.  The flaps of excess skin were miserable, especially when it was hot.  The cost of this surgery was very high and we paid for it all out of pocket, but I have zero regrets.  This process has been completely worth it even with my wounds.

Months ago a friend asked me how long I was going to post photos of myself up on my blog for the internets to see, and I told her until I was healed.  Well, I feel I am healed.  I will still post updates for sure, but it might be a quite some time before I post some new nearly naked photos of myself.  It is time to move forward.

I have been blessed throughout this entire process with friends, family and internet strangers that have encouraged me, laughed with me, and inspired me.  I have found it very freeing to share my experience fully on my blog.  I have used this writing and picture sharing to work through some very hard mental blocks and insecurities.  Nothing has been easy, but it has all been worth it.  Thank you to everyone who has been there for me in person and online. 

So, this week's photos!  The last for a while.

Today I opted for my new hot pink undies.  Size medium.  I love it.

I don't miss the extra skin one bit.

With undies on, my bum looks pretty great.  Thighs still swollen a I believe and we will see what they look like at the one year mark.  I love my new shape.

I have a waist.  And hips.  And curves.  And hot pink undies.  And a new belly button.

This wound is done with treatment.  There is no depth to it and it is now just scabbing over and drying out.

Left hip wound is done!

My new freedom!  No batsuit and just core compression.  Bliss!