Wednesday, November 14, 2012


The last few days have been a whirlwind of house cleaning, sewing and packing for our trip.  Tomorrow we are leaving for two weeks to visit my parents in Dawson Creek.  We all drive to Whitehorse and spend the night.  On Friday, the boys and I fly down while Matt drives down!  Sucker!  ahahah  

We booked the tickets months ago before we knew if Matt would have time off work.  Once he was approved for leave, there were no more tickets left.  I am happy he is driving down though, since that means I can fill the truck with goodies from my shopping adventures in Grande Prairie!  Matt is only down for one week and then he drives back to Faro to get back to work.  The boys and I will be down there until the 1st of December.

I haven't seen my father in 13 months but I did see my mom in the spring when she drove up for a visit.  Quite the change in me since I have seen them last!

While I am gone there will be a craft show in Faro that I have always attended.  My wonderful husband has volunteered (read: been told) that he will run my table for me since I will be away.  I have been sewing my heart out to have a variety of items ready for the show.  Plus sewing a heap of custom orders as well. 

I finally sat down last night and made myself a pair of mittens and was heartbroken when they ended up being just a wee bit too small for myself.  Tonight I cut myself out a new pair, but I am just too pooped to work on them!  I am going to take them down south with me and will finish them down there.

Here are pictures of what I have made in the last week:
Baby booties!

Fox fur earmuffs!

More booties!

Blue fox trimmed mitts.

Lynx fur earmuffs

Beaver fur hat

Ginormous gauntlet mittens! 

So sad these are too small for me!  Fuchsia seal with inlaid black seal in the shape of a raven.  Blue fox trim.

These mittens will make someone happy!
Have a great couple of weeks everyone!

Can I damage my new stomach?

My new stomach isn't that new anymore, but still new enough!

I have been asked a lot over the last year if my stomach will stretch back to the size it was before surgery and I didn't honestly know the answer.  I was assuming that it could be stretched by continual binge eating.  Right now my stomach will hold about one cup and I work hard to keep my meals to about 3/4's of a cup to ensure that I don't stretch out my stomach.  If I have even a couple of tablespoons more than one cup, it is painful.

I have been drinking fluids a lot quicker though, especially when I am exercising, and that did have me worried that I might be stretching out my stomach doing that!  So I sent my nutritionist and my surgeon an email to as about how easily it is to stretch the stomach.

Their response settled all of my fears!

Here is what my nutritionist had to say:
Your new stomach will give you that instant feedback when you try to overfill it!  If you routinely try to limit the volume of food you eat to no more than one cup, then it is not going to stretch out.  Over time if you were to increase the volume, then your stomach would stretch but probably not to the size it was originally.  If your stomach is pretty much empty when you drink the fluids then it won’t be a problem as it will just go right through.

And from my surgeon (who has actually had this surgery himself):
Kara, what you are experiencing is normal. I don’t honestly know the answer regarding the stretching. I do know that it will stretch to a degree. I do believe that chronic overeating (like if this were a daily occurrence) probably would allow it to stretch to a greater degree. I don’t believe the occasional “woops” we all do is a problem. It gets easier, but still happens from time to time. I don’t think the fluids will stretch it out. Plan to pre-hydrate before workouts – that helps.

That was a relief to hear from both of them!

Saturday, November 10, 2012

Weekend Already?

Is it Saturday already?  Where did the last five days go?

Oh yeah....  playgroup, sledding, baking, sewing, school, cleaning, coffee time, rec centre time, squash, book reading, movie watching, tea time, skating lessons, hockey, meetings, company for supper...... repeat over and over!

Our weeks are full.  But full of good things.  Activities centered around our family, our volunteer work, and our community. 

I love the life we have and love this community.

Afternoon goodness.  Cavan does patterns, I am sewing and Hunter is in the living room building with lego.

Monday, November 5, 2012

Weekend Goodness

We had such a fantastic weekend of family and friend time!

There was sledding time with friends, helping out at the arena with youth hockey, trying out new snowshoes, playground playing, lots of hot chocolate, friends over to visit, squash, movie nights, and even some housework.....  Whew! 

All of the outside time seems to have helped reset the boys with the time change since last night they were back to their usual 7:30pm bedtime and sleeping right until 7am.  I was worried the time change would have them popping out of bed at 6am or earlier.  Hopefully they are good now!

I just love weekends filled with fun like this.

The mamas fly down the hill!

Hurray for hot chocolate!

It's Hunter to the rescue!

So much fun with friends!

Big steps!

All ready for the snow!

And they are pros right off the get-go!  Here they are running full out.

And always a lot of laughs!

Sunday, November 4, 2012

A Black Widow in my Grapes!

The day before Halloween I got quite the surprise.  I took a bag of grapes out of my fridge (they had been there for a week) and dumped them into a plastic container.  I was getting them ready to take to playgroup for the little kids to snack on.  Next I rinsed them a few times under the tap using my hands to hold the grapes in as I poured the water off.  Then I was snacking on a few of the grapes WHEN A BIG BLACK SPIDER CAME CRAWLING OUT!

Now, I am not afraid of spiders.  They don't really bother me, but this one crawling out of my grapes gave me the heebie jeebies!

I quickly put the lid on the container and put the entire works outside into our lovely -24C temperatures.  I was going to kill him!  But then I knew I needed picture of him.  So I brought the container back in, bravely lifted up the lid and snapped a quick picture before the spider crawled out.  Then back outside it went.
Well hello spider!  Good thing the grapes didn't make it down to playgroup!

The picture wasn't great and my friends on facebook were appealing to my inner science geek to figure out what kind of spider I had found.  So a few hours later, once I was sure he would be dead, I brought the container back into the house and took his frozen carcass out to photograph.

Turns out I found a black widow spider.  Wow!  It was really easy to identify with the bold red markings under his abdomen.  A friend sent me this link to the Canadian Food Inspection Agency about black widows traveling up from California in the fall on grapes.  I looked at the package the grapes had be in, and yes, they were from California!

Most definitely a black widow!

We named it Bob and it is now in a jar.

The best conversation had about the spider came from Michael in Whitehorse.  I have a deathly, irrational fear of moths and I said I would rather be around the spider over a moth.  This is what he said about that:

That's so weird. Let's assess the comparative threat level.

Black Widow Spider: Not dangerous if left alone, but capable of causing painful death with one bite. Threat Level 9 out of 10.

Moth: A fuzzy relative to the butterfly. Flits about, causing no direct harm to any human ever. Commits suicide by repeatedly "flying into the light" Threat Level -1000 out of 10.

ahahah  So funny and true.  But I am still scared of moths.  Deathly afraid.  

So check your grapes thoroughly and maybe you will find a new friend too! 

Friday, November 2, 2012

One is the most wonderful number!

I never thought I would see this on the scale, but this week I made it!

Thirteen months ago there was a three up there and now there is a one.  120lbs in thirteen months.

Today it was even better at 198.8.  Bit by bit the scale keeps moving down to reflect a healthier me and I am so happy that I went through with the surgery.

The kids have never commented on my weight loss until this week.  Here is my conversation with Hunter:

Hunter:  Mom, your bum is getting skinnier.

Me:  Yep, it is!

Hunter:  I don't like it.  I want you back to the old you.

Me:  Why?  Now that my bum is skinnier I can run fast and chase you!

Hunter:  Yeah, that is why I want the old you.  You can catch me now!

So my next goal is to weigh less than Matt and that is about ten pounds away.  After that it will be my original goal of losing 150lbs and being down to 169lbs.  I see that finish line is sight!

Thursday, November 1, 2012

Halloween Fun!

We had a great Halloween with the boys again this year.  All the usual fun of pumpkin carving, community party and hitting up the houses for loot.

This year we tried something a little different with the boys in dealing with the large amount of candy they received.  People in Faro are very generous on how much they hand out to the kids.  Our boys didn't go to a lot of houses and still had their bags overflowing!  We told them that if they left out a big pile of candy for the Candy Fairy, that she would leave a toy in return.  The boys thought this was a great idea and bought right into it.  They were screaming with glee the next morning when they found Ninja Turtle figurines sitting out for them where they had left their piles of candy.  So that reduced the loot to about half.

I wore my beard hat and was a lumberjack!

Having fun at the community party!

Very happy when we managed to squeeze their snowsuits under the costumes!

Practicing at home first!

Pumpkin fun!

Our traditional puking pumpkins!

Pumpkin cake and cupcakes that I made for the community party.

Heading out for loot!  It warmed up for Halloween and the windchill was only -11C.