#MicroblogMonday – Summer’s over, back to the grind

Summer’s over, August is almost over and we are almost three quarter’s of the way through 2018. WHERE has this year gone!? Seriously.

Tadbit turned 3 (much) earlier this year. She’s funny, stubborn, independent, sweet and everything rolled into one bundle of energy. Mr Siili often remarks/asks if this is what I was like at this age. I don’t know whether to laugh or groan. We chopped her hair off in June. We are all much happier about it. For Tadbit, she hated hated hated having her hair brushed. I disliked the fight over brushing hair. And she’s pretty cute with her short hair. Even if many others thought she was a boy because of her short hair and non-pink clothes. Whatever.

Paxlet is 5 and soon to be a teen on Thursday. Some days…it seems like all we do is fight. I know I was like this with my mom around this age. Pay back is a bitch sometimes. Paxlet started preschool/kindergarten. (Yes, kids don’t start 1st grade until the year they turn 7.) He loves it! I have no worries that he will do just fine in school.

Do you remember my multiple posts the last couple of years about my kids not speaking in English and would they ever learn to speak English? It has finally happened!!! You all saw that coming, didn’t you?
We visited my family in the US in May and the kids’ language skills have just exploded! Paxlet had started to speak a bit to me in English before the trip, but during and after, he mostly speaks to me in English. He has even switched from Finnish to English, mid-sentence when he realizes he is speaking to me and not Mr Siili. There are some words he’s not sure of, but if he asks about them or says them in Finnish, I’ll repeat them or make sure to use them in my reply. Tadbit uses English now, but still a lot of Finnish also. What’s funny/cute is that she throws in Finnish words while she is talking to me as if she hasn’t switched languages at all. We’re not sure she notices the differences between the two languages fully. I love that my kids are speaking more English. And relieved my fears have been proved wrong.

I’m still doing Parkrun. I ran a new personal best this last Saturday of 32:44. That beat my old time by 2 minutes! I give credit to my running partner. She helped me keep a steady pace and to not walk even when I would have, if I had been on my own. My goal is to run 50 parkruns before October 2019. I don’t think it will be that difficult to do 29 more runs in a little over a year.
I’ll will also start an 8 week FitCamp program next week. I’m aiming to lose a couple of kilos and hopefully learn something new about nutrition that I can use in my daily life. I feel like I am slowly getting some of me back!

This summer was a hot hot one! By hot, I mean it was over 26C (78,8F) and many days closer to 30C (86F) for over 50 days. The last time it was remotely this hot for this long was in the 1940s. It was a humid too. We all just about died. LOL. I enjoyed it as much as I could, but I was more comfortable when it was closer to 20C (70F) again. Fall is definitely on its way. The mornings need a jacket and afternoons only a t-shirt.

As summer is over, we’re all back at work, daycare or school. This year is the first that our kids are going to two different places in the morning. Tadbit has a new daycare lady, which is 1km (0,6mi) away (compared to the 2 minute walk we had previous years). And Paxlet’s school is right in the middle of that distance. We’re finding a new rhythm to mornings and afternoons. I’ve also started working 6 hours days instead of 5 hours, which is taking time for me to get used to also.

How was your summer? Is life treating you well?

MicroblogMonday For more microposts, go visit Mel’s post at Stirrup Queens.

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Rough Morning

This morning started out like most: The kids woke up before 6:45 and went downstairs to play quietly (and not wake mom). I woke up at 6:45, looked in their empty room and called downstairs to tell them it was time to come upstairs and get ready for the day. Both called out a resounding “no”. *sigh* Mr Siili chimes in that it is time to get ready and to listen to mom. Tadbit comes upstairs a few minutes later and starts getting ready. When Paxlet comes up, his first words are accusatory and angry that I have moved his white paper. It is always my fault when something goes missing or wrong. Even if I wasn’t anywhere near the place or situation. (This time I had actually cleaned the area in question the night before.) Our words immediately become snappy, heated and not pleasant for first words on a Monday morning. Mr Siili comes and separates us and calms the situation down a bit. Once I’m ready, I head downstairs to help Paxlet look for his white square of paper that is “this big”. I find all sorts of papers and then some, but not the paper he wants, which is actually a ‘package’ with treasures/jewels wrapped in it. I vaguely remember seeing something like that, but have no idea where it ended up. I spend 5-10 minutes helping him look for his paper. No luck. However, other pieces of paper are finding their way back to the floor! Every time I turn around there is more paper crap on the floor that wasn’t there literally 5 minutes ago. Paxlet insists he needs a specific conglomerate of taped paper/plastic on the floor, but he can’t tell me why. Can’t? Won’t? Doesn’t know how? I have no idea at this point. More heated words from Paxlet and I. Tadbit is sitting at the table very quietly coloring. I eventually end up back stairs to get the hairbrush for Tadbit’s rat’s nest. I tell Mr Siili that this must be how I was with my mom at this age. And I start crying because I miss my mom. Both kids come up stairs and hug me. All arguments are forgotten and they are only concerned now. Paxlet asks, ‘why are you crying?’ I tell him I miss my mom and want to talk to her, but I can’t. His eyes are concerned and a bit teary. He knows my mom is dead. Tadbit just keeps saying ‘momma, mom-maaa’ over and over again trying to hold my hand. We hug and calm down. Then finish getting ready for daycare and work and head out the door.

This and that #5

*wiping off the dust* Hello again! As I have previously said, I’m still around, just not nearly as much. Here’s some of my current thoughts that I feel need to be said.

– Today marks what would have been my mom’s 60th birthday. I drew a little something for her, because she always told me that she’d rather we make her something instead of buying something.
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– I still worry that I’ll die young like she did and I won’t get to see my kids grow up. I don’t regret, as such, that I didn’t have kids earlier, but it crosses my mind.
– My sister had her baby girl! She was 15 days after her due date (induced and c-section) and over 10 pounds!
– We still have no date of when we’ll head to the US to see family. Ugh.
– Today is March 9th – #OwlBeKind4Thomas day. I made 8 little owls to send out into the world in honor of him.
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– It isn’t deathly cold anymore. We had over two weeks of roughly -20C. BRRRR! In addition, today is the first time in ages (this year?) that the temperature should get above freezing. The sun is actually warm again.
– I’ve started running. It’s not a fast run, but it is running. I’d probably be ‘faster’ if I didn’t stop and take so many pictures along the way. But the scenery is just amazing and different each week.
In the fall, ParkRun started here in my hometown. It’s a free weekly 5km run/walk event that is timed and operates solely on volunteers. My town is the first in Finland and the most northern one so far!
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– I’ve also started going to BodyCombay again. My old love. ❤ It feels good.
– I’m still working in the same company, but I’m in a different team on rotation. Originally I was only supposed to be here for 3 months, but my rotation contract has been extended until the end of August. This change of working tasks/team/environment has helped my mood and overall feelings. I was starting to think about moving on to a different company. Next month is 10 years that I started here.
– Next month Tadbit will be 3 years old. She’s stubborn, sweet, feisty, independent, talks if she wants to, snuggly, funny and a siren (man oh man can she sound the alarm when she’s unhappy).
– Paxlet is 5,5 years and still my baby boy. He’s challenging, independent, talks A LOT, clever and growing up way too fast. We’ve been having some issues with listening, following directions and the consequences. I hate getting to the point that he won’t respond until I yell. He starts preschool/kindergarten (esiopetus). I’m not ready, but he is. Isn’t that how it always goes?
– Mr Siili and I are still at it. 🙂 We’ve been together almost 20 years. We have our ups and downs, but I hope there are more ups, than downs. Life has definitely been more challenging since having kids.
– This summer marks 19 years of me living in Finland. Wow!

Life happens while we’re doing something. I hope you all are taking time to enjoy  your “somethings”. I know we’re trying to.
Take care and be well. – JustHeather

Blast from the past: Cabbage Patch Kids


These are my Cabbage Patch kids! There are many emotions tied to them.

My dad climbed into the attic and dug them out for me. I’m so excited to see them and know that they are in great condition. I always knew they were there, but I never really had any need of them until my Tadbit came along and loves dollies (and Lightning McQueen, Olfa, Anna, Elsa, cats, cows, etc). I can’t wait until we go to the US next year.

Charlie Caleb is on the left. His name was Charlie Randy, but I didn’t like how it sounded with my last name, so I sent in his birth certificate to get it officially changed. Charlie is fe-male. It depended on my mood and what I dressed them/it up in. Those are it’s original clothes (and shoes I think).

Heidi was made by my mom. I didn’t appreciate her (the doll and my  mom) enough when I was younger, but my heart aches with love now at how much my mom loved me.

Back to work

The kids and I survived our 8 weeks of summer holiday. We even thrived during some of that time. But it sure was challenging some days. I then had one more week all to myself, with the kids back at daycare and Mr Siili at work. It was bliss. I was lazy, cleaned a tiny bit, got my hair done, ate lunch downtown, slowly.

I do wish some of the days had a been a bit easier during the summer. Paxlet will soon be 5 years old. He is in a phase of not listening to us. We say something nicely/calmly several times and  he doesn’t acknowledge us in any way. When we raise our voice or yell, he say “yeah yeah” or starts crying. I know he’s a little boy with big emotions, but this is draining! And little Miss Tadbit (2yr 4 mo), she copies EVERYTHING her big brother does. ‘Peat and Repeat’ comes to mind. A a much better description of them than ‘monkey see, monkey do’, although that is valid too. She’s full of personality. And even the annoying things she does at times are still pretty cute, just because she is still young. I love my kids an insane amount, but they are challenging for me at times.

On my first day back at work, I barely manage to remember my computer password. Then I was still deactivated in the system, which thankfully only took a few minutes to solve. I had over 300 emails to go through. And basically just took my time getting back into the swing of things.

After work, as I was on the bus home, when I saw my bus in the lane next to us! I had hopped on the wrong bus! Thankfully it was easy enough to hop off at the next stop, take a 2nd bus, which brought me back around to my intended bus line home.

Then, at the library, a man working there did a double take at me and wondered/asked if I was the same woman who was with her 2 kids during the summer who spoke to said kids in English. (My hair color had changed since I was last there and I wasn’t with kids at this moment.) When I said it was me, he asked why I was speaking to them in English. When I replied that I am American, a little light bulb went off in his eyes. I’ve been asked this question before and I find it interesting. Either I look very Finnish (which I’ve been told I don’t do a bad job of it) and/or my Finnish language skills are so good that they think I’m a Finn (maybe, possibly, depending on what I’m talking about). However, I don’t think this specific guy heard me speak Finnish. I’m not sure what to think about this. Mostly I’m just amused.

So, the kids are back in daycare. I’m back at work. And life is back to normal again.

#MicroblogMonday – Told you so

I hope there is a day that someone can say “I told you so” in relation to my son, and probably daughter, speaking English. I just feel so deflated and disheartened when Paxlet doesn’t speak English. I know he could, if he wanted and tried, but he doesn’t want to and only randomly tries, so he doesn’t speak it well. Tadbit seems to be going the same way. She has been wowing us with many new words a week lately, but all in Finnish. In fact, if I tell her/use the English one, she disagrees with me on it! LOL

The kids are in Finnish daycare all day, have a Finnish dad and only me for English. Once they are in school, there are city run programs for multi-lingual families, but we’ve got another 1,5 years (only?! ack!) before he starts preschool/kindergarten (at age 6).

I never thought about languages this way. Nor that it would be so difficult to get my kids to speak my mother tongue.

I don’t really have much to offer or ask for. I’m just mussing and hoping (again) that things will change in the future.

MicroblogMonday For more microposts, go visit Mel’s post at Stirrup Queens.

#MicroblogMonday – This and That #5 aka Mind-dump Monday

Welcome to the next year, everyone! I hope 2017 is kind to you and that it lives up to your expectations.

Sorry for the long post today, but this has all been percolating in my brain for some time.

I learned about my good friend’s daughter’s diagnosis of depression last week. It’s sad to see it affect someone so young. She’s only 7. If you have any book suggestions or resources where they can look, I’d love to be able to pass it on to them.

I’m glad Xmas is over. Such a build up to the event and then it’s over in an evening/morning. Many years it feels as if I stress and stress and it doesn’t really go like I planned or thought it would be in my head. This year was no different. Both kids were mildly sick (fever and snuffly-coughs), so we didn’t make it to the cousins for Xmas. It would have been the first time, ever. We didn’t have a tree, but we did have decorations we made and lots of Xmas food I made. I don’t know what exactly it is I expect of or from Xmas, but I was bummed. However, as I drove to the cousins’ house to drop off/pick up gifts, I cried and worked out my stress and frustrations. Xmas is about being with family. This year it was going to be with the cousins, instead of at my in-laws (or my own family, which has been waaay too long). When that didn’t work out, I was upset. But then it dawned on me, I have my own family now! A family that I have longed for and wanted for so long. That realization helped me calm down and mostly remain focused on what I wanted from Xmas this year: to see my kids (and Mr Siili) happy and loved. It worked.

I did get to Skype with my family on Xmas eve (their morning). It was great to see them all in one place at one time. I still missed my Mom.

I’ve been feeling quite down on myself lately. I feel like I am not good enough. At many things. Being a mom, wife, worker, person. It sucks.

I got my Mirena IUD, had a week of nothing and then I started spotting/lightly bleeding, which has now lasted for 2+ weeks. Yay.

For 3-4 weeks leading up to Xmas, I had excruciating back pain. I’ve had back pain off and on since I was 14 and a passenger in a car wreck. This time, however, it was bad, very bad. Many days a paracetamol would only take the edge off. The pain was bad enough I went to the doctor for it. She prescribed me a week’s worth of mega-pain meds and some muscle relaxants (I only took a couple day’s worth). After the week of mega-pain meds my back was fine for a day or two and since then the pain has crept back. I head to the physiotherapist tomorrow morning. If he can’t help, I’ll head back to the doctor in another couple of weeks to see what happens next. I’m tired of back pain.

I need to stop eating so much sweets. And not just for the holidays, but all times.

When I was at the post office before Xmas to mail my cards, there was an addressed post card that didn’t have a stamp. Someone dropped it and didn’t notice. I felt bad that the receiver wouldn’t get their card, so I paid for the postage (,80 cents).
Then the next day, I found 24 euros worth of stamps on the ground. There was a receipt in the bag with them, showing that they had been paid by a debit card. I returned the stamps back to the store in hopes that they would be able to return the money to the card. I’m assuming it happened like that because the store never contacted me to come get the stamps. I would have felt guilty every time I used one of those stamps if I had kept them without trying to return them first.

I love my kids! Even if they drive me bat-shit crazy at times.
Paxlet is so smart, inquisitive and observant about the world around him. He loves his little sister. He tells her “Sä ot mun pikku sisko” (You are my little sister) and it melts my heart every time. Yet, he whines and moans about everything I do or don’t do. (Why is putting one’s clothes on such a difficult task sometimes?)
Tadbit is the cutest and most stuborn drama queen there is. We’re going to be in trouble. For now, it’s just cute when she dramatically pouts when we tell her to not hit the cat, take a smaller bite or not throw things. She’s consistently saying 2 words together and more and more 3-word sentences every day. She also growls. I think she might have gotten some of that from me.

Our house NEEDS to be de-cluttered. I need to just give up on the idea of trying to sell things on FB and donate the stuff. We need it out of our house more than we need the money.

We crafted quite a bit during December. But those were kid-friendly crafts. I finally got my sewing machine out yesterday and did some adult crafting! I made two reusable veggie-fruit bags. I had only been meaning to make these for a couple of months. They are from all recycled material. I can’t wait to try them out next time I go food shopping.

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And that’s some of what has been in my head. How was/is your first Monday of the year?

MicroblogMonday For more microposts, go visit Mel’s post at Stirrup Queens.