Wednesday, 30 December 2015

runneth over

Another grand adventure under our belts and we stuffed ourselves to the brim with laughter.

We are back in New Denmark after a 10-day road trip to see some of the famjam during Santa time, and we packed a lot into those days.

On our whirlwind adventure we: 

  • Slept on cots in our house in Saint John 
  • Had a sudden hellish stomach flu (me)
  • Met up with a handful of friends (Nance only for most of them. See list item b.)
  • Watched an important basketball game. Go, Rush!
  • Played tipsy ukulele with my brother. Nod to Angela for her fab recorder skills.

  • Played Anomia and pictionary competitively...against children. Cutthroat. 
MS note: actually having anomia does not make the game harder.
  • Made our way to the city of pizza corners!
  • Embraced the bounty of trails Halifax has to offer. We three miss living near sprawling parks like Point Pleasant or SJ's Rockwood. Just seeing Abbey on a beach for a few minutes made me tear up. I have to admit, though, our snowy potato fields are pretty good playgrounds too, even if you have to keep watch for coyotes.
  • Shopped a little, but mostly gawked slackjawed at all the traffic, people, and shiny things
  • Pretended we were everything from spaceships to British pigs and tickle monsters
  • Visited with family (or tried to steal kittens, depending on your perspective) and watched tenacious adults struggle with 3D character puzzles for hours. I got a text after midnight showing Tinkerbell in all her 3D glory. When did kids' toys get so tricky?
It's been far too long since I spent quality time with some of dad's clan. Feels like home.

What else? We:
  • Learned about the barbarous trading world of Shopkins
  • Went to see Tina Fey's Sisters movie. Almost turned around and went back into the same theatre for a second viewing. So funny. 
  • Got soul refreshment in the piles and heaps of giggles that emanate from three-year olds, especially in the presence of nose thieves and toe snatchers
  • Acquired peace of mind by trading in tiny car for transportation with all wheel drive - take that, Klokkedahl Hill.

84 degree angle

  • Oh, and we have 800 movies to watch thanks to the best brother-in-law ever! Winter just got cozier!

That's the short list. Top mentions go to sharing meals and stories with our siblings and being with a very happy little boy sometime before 7 AM on Christmas morning. Moments that matter.

On the MS side, I am moderately symptomatic, but nothing too out of the ordinary. I know I have not been getting adequate rest and hope that things get back to normal now that we're home and can gradually get our house in order again. Very much hoping to lose the nagging leg pain, but it doesn't impair my function, so there's that. Silver linings. 

I loved every moment of our holiday hijinks, minus the stomach bug while sleeping on a cot, but it's also good to be back so we can unpack and start making this house feel like home. The adage that home is where the heart is has never felt truer. Home is with my little family, wherever we land.

merry ho ho

Oh, did I mention we're doing an 80km walking holiday in Ireland in August? Maybe I did. Prepare for lots of whining about walking. Who am I kidding, I don't even update enough for "lots of" anything. ;)

Wednesday, 9 December 2015

walk this way

I took Abbey to a park this morning - we have a few hours of driving this afternoon, so I wanted to burn off some puppy power beforehand. As I popped out of the car and headed towards the few stairs that lead to a field, I stumbled. The boots I had on aren't made for snow. Two quick recovery steps to the left. Phew, righted, or so I thought. Two more quick recovery steps to the left.

It wasn't lasting. I didn't fall. I didn't hurt myself or anyone else. The scary part of those four seconds was that I was feeling fine. Rested. Present. Happy. And, just like that, I was reminded how MS can drop in for a quick chat out of the blue.

Now, I really want to blame it on this sinus thing that's brewing. No grip on my boots. Tired. But I am fairly certain none of those were to blame. I find it difficult to describe having MS when people ask. Some people lose mobility with MS. Some have impaired vision. While I have had affected ambulation and problems with my peepers, I mainly seem to get random weirdness that even WebMD doesn't cover [see previous post]. How do you describe this buckshot scatter of symptoms to people and help them understand? And is it worth sharing just how strange our bodies can be?

Tuesday, 8 December 2015

life in a box

I filled in one of those personality tests recently and one of the questions was about déjà vu and whether I find history repeating itself foreshadowy.

Here we are, again, at the beginning of December, packing our worldly possessions onto bite sized pieces. Or, feasibly carrying sized boxes. It turns out that on a pleasant Sunday, as one sips coffee and contemplates life - or watches The Muppets, whatevs - one can be booted from one's comfort zone when a stranger pulls up out front and pounds a SOLD sign into the frozen earth of the front yard. That is the current sitch.

The house we were renting sold. We were given a month's notice once we tracked down the landlord to ask if there was something we should know. Unfortunately that month is December, a month packed full of travel and, y'know, Christmas. Soooo, back to the land of boxes and tape.

Thanks to a friend's connections, we were very fortunate in finding a new place to rent quickly - not everyone will rent to people with multiple pets. Very few would rent to us if they saw Abbey in all her boisterous glory. The owners of the new place, however, are animal people and had cats and dogs themselves. There's even a fenced in dog yard surrounding the back door.

So, where will we live, you ask [let's pretend you were curious]?! Well, we are moving to the even teenier town of New Denmark. Population somewhere between 400 and 1100, depending on your source.

We have started moving ourselves, one truckload at a time, and have made a lot of progress. I am happy to report that we'll have help with the rest of the large items. We moved two mattresses ourselves and learned that 90 year old houses can be tricky. For example, the stairwells are at supernatural angles that can make mattresses expand to triple their width and weight somehow. Fascinating, really.
It is a cute house and I look forward to making it home in the upcoming weeks, but boy what I'd give for a time machine right now. Or a magic wand. Where's Samantha's nose when you need it?

The distance from town will mean that I won't get to see my darling wife every day at noon. But rather than focus on the few dark clouds, here are a few of the highlights: there are miles and miles of snowshoeing trails. We won't have random dingdong dashing because we only have one neighbour. It's waaay easier to eat better when you have a decent drive to get to a store. The dog is going to be blissed out with her huge playground out back (read: someone's snowy potato fields).

One of the tough parts of a sudden move is my opportunistic friend, MS. I don't have the option of sitting back and relaxing, so I have been a little more symptomatic than usual. I have the strangest, grossest sensation of constantly feeling like there's a hair on my tongue at the back of my throat, even though there's nothing there. Ick doesn't begin to describe that. To make life slightly comical, my upper lip feels like it's bouncy. When I talk, there's a very noticeable vibration in my top lip as my lips meet. Bizarro. And, loathe not to live up to the blog name, my feet feel like someone else's again. Numb soles. That sounds more emo than intended.

I am taking care of myself. Trying to get to bed early. Meditating. I took a few days off of packing to be with Nance while she's on the road for work. Forced stoppage. It feels impractical not to be home packing but this is the smarter move. Today, rather than wrap dishes or bag shoes, I grabbed a fancy coffee, bought a new hat and brought Wonder Dog to a park. It was a stunningly beautiful time. Sunshine, snow, happy dog. Big smiles.