Friday, May 25, 2007

Back to normal...kinda

It's almost a week since we moved our household belongings fifteen minutes to another house, but it will be several weeks before the house is in order.
So I'll post some pictures later in June. My mom surprised us with a visit last week and stayed through until yesterday so it was very helpful to have her doing all the stuff to keep the household running in a normal routine.
We have lots of plans for our house, including ridding several walls of wallpaper and giving other walls a fresh coat of paint. Our fenced-in back yard needs work as well and we are really enjoying the view of the river and the whole area. So far all the other neighbors we have met have been very friendly which is a big difference from our previous homes.
On a more personal note, I'm feeling fine and most days I can keep on going without taking a nap/rest. I'm scheduled next week to see my midwife for the first time, so I'm hoping that visit goes well.
Other than that, we have our son's fourth birthday in about three weeks, which will coincide with a week visit from my husband's twin brother. My husband will take vacation so the two of them can pal around together.
I'm not used to having a life, so bear with me.

Saturday, May 12, 2007

Life updated

Where do I start? Life has picked up to an increased rate which can only be described as "hurtling".
We closed on our house this week as many of you know. So we today we spent time cleaning the kitchen, taking down unwanted blinds, curtains and cupboards.
Here is a picture of the front of our townhouse taken Thursday evening after we received the keys from the lawyer via our agent. Being our fifth wedding anniversary, we celebrated in style. Kinda.
We brought a picnic dinner of Subway sandwiches to eat on the dining room hardwood floor as we investigated our new purchase. It was so nice to see the flowers in bloom next to the front door. The last time we had seen the house was mid-March under snow and ice. The next picture is taken from our front steps looking over the rest of the condo area with the parking lot in the far distant. All the condos face inward to the common green area.
Moving day is set for next Saturday with most of the packing done, just the stuff we are still using plus odds and ends. Behind the house is a large grassy area which leads to the banks of a small river which is suitable for canoeing and kayaking. It appears to be a quiet neighborhood helped by the dead-end street. So far everyone who has passed by us on the paths has been friendly and today I briefly talked with one of our nextdoor neighbors who seemed nice.
Hopefully we can get away from noisy, inconsiderate and often stupid neighbors. Since our married life has begun in Canada we have been plagued by terrible experiences with unruly neighbors. Buying a house in a quieter area was one way we thought we could fix this ongoing issue.
So this time we're hoping God has blessed us with friendly and considerate neighbors.
Coupled with the home-buying and moving experience, we also have been blessed with another experience, a pregnancy. I'm almost 7 weeks if the doctor's calculations are to be trusted. :)
My due date is January 7th, 2008 which gives me plenty of time to get the house in order and ready for a new baby.
Our almost four-year old son is thrilled and asks everyday if the baby is still growing. Then he wants to know how the baby is going to come out. Ahhh, the difficult questions of life. I tell him that at the hospital the doctor will help me when the baby's ready. Seems to make sense right now.
I'm currently on two waiting lists for midwifery groups. Hopefully, the Lord will open a position with one of the offices. Some of you may not be aware, but I was under the care of midwives in Pennsylvania for my first baby, who ended up being delivered C-section. So now I am in a special group of women which limits which hospitals I can deliver with the midwives. Who knew?
My sister is also expecting and is due at the end of July. And my twin nephews turned one last month, so our family is not hurting for babies to love. My mother is of course delighted, actually ecstatic is more like it.
We are very happy, albeit a little surprised by how quick this came. We were planning on trying this summer, well...guess we'll have other things to do this summer. :)

Monday, May 07, 2007

Flickr update

I just updated my Flickr site. Click here to view.

Sunday, May 06, 2007

What is up with this cat?!!

Nico is in heat for a third time since early March.
What is her problem??
We're going have to get her fixed without letting the vet take us to the proverbial cleaners. Should be interesting...

Thursday, May 03, 2007

I'm a Temporary Permanent Resident

On Tuesday morning, I had an interview appointment with Immigration Canada to determine my status in Canada. Not knowing exactly what to expect, we arrived early for our appointed time in a downtown government building(which happens to describe most of the city!). After waiting for about 20 minutes in a room with several other people, a woman with dyed curled hair, and a French accent appeared at counter completely enclosed behind glass. The only openings were for passing items under the glass and rows of holes drilled to provide for communication.
My name was called fairly quickly and I came to the counter alone. First things first, paying the remainder of the fees. Using our credit card, she gave me a receipt for the paid landing fees. I guess that meant I was approved. No, they probably would refund your money if they later found you inadequate.

Next, she asked for my passport and then asked for my husband to submit his photo id. After she confirmed he was who he claimed to be, he was allowed to return to his seat to be with our son. I submitted the pictures which I had had taken the day before at a large retail outlet. The photos were a little dark and the immigration officer was concerned they might be rejected, so she said one of her colleagues would retake the pictures at no extra charge. She then asked if I wanted the Permanent Resident card issued in my married name or maiden name. Having just gone through the hassle of getting my American passport changed to my married name, I felt like saying, "umm, if my passport is in my married name, wouldn't I want this card to match it?". But of course, I just said, "Yes, I would like it to be issued in my married name."

For several minutes, she typed various keys on her computer, making strange faces and hmmm sounds. Then she brightened, held some paperwork in her hand and said she had four questions to ask me. I think I've written them down correctly, but #3 and #4 might have been put into one, which means I can't remember the fourth one.
Q1. Do you have any other dependents who are not Canadian citizens or permanent residents?
Q2. Have you ever been convicted of a crime or offense?
Q2. Have you ever been refused admission into Canada?
Q4. Have you ever been asked to leave Canada?
None of the answers to these questions provide new information to the Immigration office, but apparently are necessary so that they can have you sign that the statements are true and correct.
With that, she left her desk and disappeared around a corner for about three minutes. She reappeared and said, "Congratulations. You are a Permanent Resident". I thanked her and she then slid my passport and paperwork confirming my status and a follow-up sheet of information under the glass. I was then ushered down a hallway to an alarmed door where her colleague took me to a photo room and re-took the needed photos. After that, I was excused and free to leave. I think the total time spent in the building was about an hour or less. So in about a month, I should receive the photo id PR card which is valid for five years. After three years, I can apply for citizenship, which is strongly being recommended by my husband. :)