Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Christmas Day

Posted by: Blue

December 25, 2011 will mark the first Christmas Day in 28 years that I have not spent the entire day with my family.

If it is quiet enough, my partner and I plan to sneak over to my mother-in-law's for some turkey and pumpkin pie.

Monday, December 19, 2011

Holiday Gift Giving and Racism

Posted by: Blue

Shoplifting calls have skyrocketed in the past few weeks.  Everyone wants to give something to their family for Christmas.  Some people just steal the presents instead of paying for them with their hard-earned money.

This weekend was cheque weekend.  The drunk tank had a steady line of cruisers waiting to deposit their detainees who were full of Holiday Cheer.  I personally tanked 3 people. 

Two of them were celebrating their birthdays (separate events). 

The other one was having a family reunion and had come from up on one of the Northern Aboriginal reserves with the rest of the family to bring her daughter in for medical appointments.  She was screaming the entire way to the tank that we couldn't take her away from her daughter.  I calmly told her that we could, and we had, and that her daughter would be fine with Child and Family Services for the night.  She called me and my partner racist.  My partner, who is half Native, told her so, also explaining that his wife was full-blooded Native and was the daughter of a Chief and that we were not in fact racist, but that we could not leave a five-year-old child in the care of adults who were so intoxicated that they could not stand.

I went on to tell her that I believed that she was the racist one for jumping to the conclusion that because I happen to be white and also happened to be doing my job and caring for her child because she couldn't be bothered to stay sober enough to guarantee that her daughter made it to the hospital the next day, that I was the racist one.  I told her she should be ashamed of herself and that maybe she should rethink the events that brought her to the tank that night while she was sobering up in the concrete cell. 

She was quiet for the rest of the trip.

I love people and I try to have a lot of patience, but even the most loving parent can turn into a horrible person with too much alcohol.  Alcohol and drugs change people.  Everyone who I deal with who is intoxicated is an entirely different person if I run into them and they are sober.  Most of them apologize for how they were when I was dealing with them last.  I am always willing to forgive and to treat them how they are treating me at the time.

Saturday, December 17, 2011

Christmas Miracle

This year, while The Boy is on Christmas break, Blue is on Day Shift and then he's off.

I'm thankful that while the kids are at home during the days over the holidays I don't have to yell whisper at them to be quiet because their dad is sleeping.

To me it feels like a real Christmas miracle.

Wednesday, December 7, 2011


Posted by: Blue

There are 236 neighbourhoods in our city of approximately 700 000.  Of those 236 neighbourhoods, 14 of them clustered together at the centre of the city in approximately 6 square km's (2.3 square miles or 1482.6 acres) have been the location of 75% of the murders this year to date.

This means that 75% of the murders this year have occurred in an area equivalent to 1.2% of the land mass that the city covers.

Friday, December 2, 2011

Parent Teacher Interview

There's nothing better than seeing your handsome uniformed husband squished into a little elementary school desk attentively listening on while your son proudly displays his artwork and achievements.

Thursday, December 1, 2011

Missing Daddy

Waffle was missing her daddy today. She asked me what he was up to and if he was fighting with someone. It's funny to see her figure out what his job is all about.

Blue and I both have the same cell phone and on these spiffy phones we can send each other photo's and video's inside our text messages.

Waffle sent Blue a picture of herself and a video saying, "I love you daddy!"

She's trying to understand why he's sometimes here for days at a time and sometimes gone for, what seems like, days at a time. Why some nights he's sleeping here and some nights he doesn't come home.

Last week she had a nightmare at 4:00 in the morning while Blue was on shift. She came upstairs and jumped into my bed shaking and crying. I sent Blue a text letting him know and before you knew it he was on the phone with her reassuring her that everything was fine.

Today he sent her back a picture of him in his uniform and cruiser car. She was very excited.

It's a nice feature that gives her a little glimpse into his world when he's out on the job.

I'm sure that this is a confusing transition for a 4 year-old.

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Our Reality

Every once-in-awhile I am struck by the gravity of Blue's line of work. I stumble through my thoughts wondering how on earth I have found the inner strength or peace of mind to deal with this change, with this life, on a daily basis.

I was driving to work (yes, I got a part-time job) yesterday while Blue was at home sleeping and it hit me. My husband is no longer my own. My children's father is no longer their own. We share him. His heart is fully mine yet, given the opportunity, he will put himself into harms way over and over again to help those in need. I would hope that most people would be the same whether they wear a uniform or not. There are amazing stories of civilians stepping-up and coming to the aid of the deserving and undeserving alike. You never know when you will be called upon to intervene. The difference, and the reality that often gets to me, is that, for Blue, this is every day. Every. Day.

The occupational hazards of Blue's job are being spat on, kicked, punched, stabbed, shot at....

This is our life now. We kiss him and say our "I love yous" as he's leaving for work and I pray that he has a good shift but when he gets in to work and puts on that uniform you never know what will happen. He has a duty to serve and protect and he will see that through even if it means he could be hurt.

I suppose I'm wading through all of this right now because he was at a call the other day where shots had been fired. I didn't think much about it at the time...until I was driving to work. It hit me all-of-a-sudden that this is our reality now.


Wednesday, November 16, 2011


Posted by: Blue

Two days ago, I was temporarily assigned (TA'd) to the downtown division for the night.  I took a false alarm commercial hold-up alarm and then we were assigned to a disturbance at a nearby restaurant.

We arrived on scene to find a beligerent male who had tried to pay for his meal with a credit card.  The transaction was declined and the male became agitated when the manager asked him if he remembered his PIN.

Long story short, this guy had stolen a credit card from his newly deceased roommate and decided to go out for a night on the town. 

Identity theft and idetity fraud are a little tricky to write-up, but my task was made even more difficult as the accused kept pestering us to use the bathroom every few minutes.

After the third time in the bathroom in less than 20 minutes, he had the audacity to ask me what was taking so long and why he wasn't on his way to Provincial Remand yet.  I told him that if he could hold his bowels for more than 4 minutes at a time, I might be able to finish briefing my Sgt. and get on with my reports.

The accused looked me square in the eye and said "It's that damn 'Paki' food.  It gave me diarrhea.  I'm never going back there."

I told him that he was most assuredly less than welcome anyway, as he had stolen his meal that night and then made an ass of himself first with the staff and then with my partner and I.  I then proceeded to explain to him that the family restaurant which he had ingratiatingly attempted to defraud with a credit card belonging to the estate of a recently deceased friend and cancer patient was in fact East Indian in race, and it would behove a gentleman in his position to keep a civil tongue in his head as I was getting tired of potty-training at the moment.

He told me that he was glad I was doing my job so well and that it was just what God wanted me to do.  He said that he had it all planned out, because he had been evicted of late by the "landlady from hell" and he was looking forward to staying in the "Remand Hotel".

I told him that I was glad that he was excited to go to jail, but that it was the taxpayers of the Province sending him there due to his crimes, not God.

Some people just don't get it.

Monday, November 14, 2011

When He's Gone

Day shifts are nice because Blue is home in the evenings.

Night shifts are also nice because Blue is home (and awake) for part of the evenings.

Evening shifts are hard because Blue is only awake in the early afternoon...which can end-up being awkward. Don't get me wrong, when I'm also home at the same time it's nice to sit and have a cup of coffee with him or make him a big breakfast. I just find that when he's gone for the evening I have a hard time caring about things. Dinner? Meh. Bathtime? Meh. Storytime? Meh. Staying awake past 9? Meh.

Tonight it was thrown-together baked spaghetti and X-men cartoons. The kids loved it. I felt like a horrible parent.

I think that I need to try a bit harder to stick to a routine when Blue is on evening shift or else we are going to end-up eating cereal in front of the t.v. for a week straight.

Friday, November 11, 2011

Lest We Forget

Posted by: Blue

For my American readers who may not know, today is Rememberance Day in Canada.  On 11/11/1918 at 11:00 a.m., the guns of WWI were finally silenced after a peace treaty was signed by the countries involved.

Today, we remember our veterans and those who fought and died for our freedom.  In honour of the countless men and women who we owe everything to: a poem.

In Flanders Fields

In Flanders fields the poppies blow
Between the crosses, row on row,
That mark our place: and in the sky
The larks still bravely singing fly
Scarce heard amid the guns below.

We are the dead: Short days ago,
We lived, felt dawn, saw sunset glow,
Loved and were loved: and now we lie
In Flanders fields!

Take up our quarrel with the foe
To you, from failing hands, we throw
The torch: be yours to hold it high
If ye break faith with us who die,
We shall not sleep, though poppies grow
In Flanders fields

Written by Lt. Col. John McRae; a Canadian soldier on the front lines in Ypres, Belgium on May 3, 1915 during WWI.

Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends.
John 15:13 KJV

There is nothing more to say but "Thank God for our veterans".

We Will Remember Them

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Day Shift: Tour # 5

Posted by: Blue

My partner was back today.  I started by jumping.  By noon there was no sight of lunch, so I quickly stopped at a coffee shop to meet my wife, brother and kids for a java.

The two female Filipino servers argued over which one would serve me at their register.  I had walked up to the one closest to me at the counter when I heard the further one yell over "Hey, send him here!  You always get the officers!" 

The first girl laughed and sent me over.  I smiled at the second one.  It was nice to be somewhere that people wanted to see you.

Half an hour later, I was in a heated argument with a cab driver, trying to explain in an escalating volume and tone that he did in fact have the responsibility to meet with police as requested when people had been complaining about his dangerous driving, all the while competing with his interjections and disregard for what I had been calmly trying to tell him in the first place.

By the end of the cab driver story, I had met a very pleasant elderly couple, called the cab company to submit a complaint for them, and had a dripping wet, Police cell phone with a broken screen returned to the police station by the above mentioned cabbie (long story).

Best part of my day was seeing my family for 5 minutes.  Everything else today just seemed to be stupid and frustrating.  I came home today very happy though.  The 5 minutes trumped the other 9 hours and 55 minutes.

Now it's time for days off.

Day Shift: Tour # 4

Posted by: Blue

Yesterday, my partner took the day off to go to his son's hockey game.  That meant our shift was short.

I drove down to the district South of us to pick-up a temporary partner.  He offered to jump first.  We got stuck taking care of the property from a string of vehicle break-ins.

We logged property all day long. 

We caught the guy, so at least it was worth it.

Friday, November 4, 2011

Day Shift: Tour # 3

This morning, my partner and I attended a Suspicious Circumstance call.  Initial information was that there was an unknown male in front of the complainant's house "possibly stealing internet".

When we got there, the male was sleeping in the front seat of his black VW Jetta, no laptop in sight.  I knocked on the window and prepared for the worst, trying to peer through the dark tinted windows.  Even as the first call of the day, my partner would be typing an impaired driver until the end of the shift.  They take forever to process.

The male woke up, and was startled and sleepy, but sober as a judge.

It would seem that the nighshift had already had a run-in with him, and towed his car for having invalid insurance.

It would also seem that they had it towed to a different address... but how did it get here now... with him inside of it...?  Such a strange thing.  It was almost as though he had another tow truck tow it two blocks over, away from his home... Unless... He wouldn't have driven it would he?!  That would be illegal!  Again!  After the other crew gave him a break instead of impounding it; allowing him to tow it home!  That scallywag!  Knave!  Rapscallion!

We tagged him again.  And seized his plates.  We would have impounded it, except that upon further investigation, we realized that the insurance on his actual car was fine.  He just had the wrong plates on the vehicle; a ticketable offence, but not towable.

Our entire shift went to a course last week on vehicle inspections.  We have the power to pull any vehicle to the side of the road and inspect it for safety purposes.  It is generally possible to tow approximately 65% of the vehicles on our roadways for failing to meet the safety requirements necessary (according to our Vehicle Inspection Unit's statistics).  Since the course, I have been itching for a chance to find some vehicles to practice on.  I suggested to my partner that we try with a grin.  He rolled his eyes and told me it was still early and dark and cold.

Maybe tomorrow, when I am in the jumper seat.

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Day Shift: Tour # 2

Posted by: Blue

Today was traffic court.  For my partner.  He told me to find something better to do with my time than sit around waiting for him.

I took the car a few blocks over and met for breakfast with another half of a cruiser car, a school resource officer, and a guy out of a specialty unit in one of the districts to the South of us.

I like breakfast.  It's my favourite meal to eat at a restaurant.  But our household is on a tight budget with the new career and the new cut in pay that comes with it.  I just had a water.

Now, just so you know I didn't do nothing all day, the rest of my day was filled with:
  • Info on a Warrant: Probation Officer called it in.  While enroute, the suspect left the dispatch location.  Another unit picked him up.  We showed up, with another unit and the supervisor.  The unit who had found him had court in twenty minutes.  I played "paper/rock/scissors" with the third unit to see who would process him on the warrant.  They lost.
  • Suicide Threat: Other end of the city.  Mom called concerned about her daughter.  Daughter was fine, just mad at mom because mom was threatening to stop paying her bills.  We told her not to text her mom things like "maybe I'll just kill myself" just to get her mad.  Then we called Child and Family Services from the car to notify them that this mother might just need a little bit of care as she seemed to be overwhelmed with her children as a single parent.  When we returned to give her some resources and phone numbers, she slammed the door in our faces, telling us "not to bother her with that stuff".
  • Wellbeing Check: Assigned as we were cruising by right after clearing the Suicide Threat.  Suddenly cleared before arrival by dispatch, sent back across the city for a high priority Domestic Dispute.  Cleared again by dispatch five minutes later and half-way there, put back on our Wellbeing Check.  Arrived shortly thereafter, female complainant gone.  Security guard on scene advised she had been "tripping out", running around naked.  They kicked her out.  She left on the bus.  We checked all of her known hang-outs, no luck.
  •  Traffic Stop: On the way back to the station to type all of our paper.  The driver passed a bus in the oncoming lane while it was picking up passengers, narrowly missing an SUV directly in front of our cruiser.  I was going to tag her fiercely, but my partner convinced me to give her a warning because of her sterling driving record.  I conceded, and just wagged my finger for a while before telling her to thank my partner for the break.  She did.  Sincerely.
  • Report Writing: By the end of the day we both had a few reports to write, including a couple from yesterday.  I finished 12 minutes after quitting time.
It was a bit slow today.

Tomorrow we will see how the weekend is going to start.

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Day Shift: Tour # 1

Posted by: Blue

Today was a good day.

I checked my online pay stub.  There's an extra $300.00 worth of overtime coming my way this pay period.

Our uniform supplies such as pants, shirts, and shoes operate on a points system.  While in recruit class, there were points sitting on my account that I couldn't redeem until graduation.  Now that I've been out for a few weeks, I decided to go shopping.  There are currently twice as many points on my Stores Account as there were during academy.  I took a chunk out of them today and picked-up:

- Four monogrammed mock-neck t-shirts for wearing under the duty shirt.  These mean not wearing ties, even with our jackets on.
- A new pair of slash gloves for back-up.
- A plainclothes holster (more easily concealed while working in "civvies").
- A plainclothes badge (worn beside the gun while in plainclothes so that people in the grocery store don't hit the dirt when you're buying milk).
- A duty sweater for cold mornings.

The sweater is my favourite apprehension.  It looks kinda like this:
(Image courtesy of: http://www.chiefsupply.com/4458-Liberty-Uniform-V-neck-Police-Sweater-Navy.aspx)

But without the ribbing, and with shoulder flashes.

I also checked my time bank, and found that I had an extra 10 hours credited to my overtime bank somehow during my transfers in and out of academy.  I'm assured it's not a mistake.  Pretty sweet to have an extra day off.

To top-off my day, I got home to my wife cooking chili.  One of my favourites.  I had 3 helpings.

Friday, October 28, 2011


Posted by: Blue

Two shifts ago, my partner and I took a statement from a homeowner on a Break and Enter that had occurred while he was at work.

Total cost of the stolen items was close to $10,000.  The thieves took a white canvas bag with red lettering on the side from the house to carry the merchandise out.

Today, while on course, I ran into a detective from our division.  He and his partner nabbed one of the culprits the next day.  He was carrying a white canvas bag with red lettering and the detective recognized it from my report.


Wednesday, October 26, 2011


Posted by: Blue

Last night, a call came in about several youths damaging a building downtown with spray paint.

The assigned unit came over the radio stating that a bank at the corner of the two busiest streets in the city had been damaged to the tune of "WE ARE THE 99%".

Ironically, it was unknown who "WE" was.  Perhaps the numerous cameras in the area will be able to shed some light.

Friday, October 21, 2011

All Smiles

Today is a good day. Nay, a great day.

The Boy doesn't have school today, so I got to sleep in. Which, on any normal day, is reason enough for rejoicing. Today would be wonderful if we were to just stop there...but it just keeps getting better folks.

Right now I'm having my morning java and blogging in bed while the kiddies are watching cartoons downstairs. Ah, a quite house and a cup of coffee always make for a good day, but it still keeps going.

After I'm done here I'll be getting the kids and I dressed and fed and then we'll be heading over to our city's convention center, finding a spot (hopefully) with a good view and watching Blue graduate from police academy! I'm so excited. I wish I could post pictures of Blue in his dress tunic. Just imagine something spiffy like Prince William on his wedding day and that'll give you a good idea of what the recruits look like. Very sharp.

Afterwards, the kids will be going to their aunties for the night so Blue and I can go and enjoy his grad dinner with friends and family. An evening out all dressed-up with an awesome reason to celebrate with loved ones...it doesn't get much better than that!

See, I told you today is great day!

(now I'm just praying that the 50 recruits will be able to stand at attention for 2+ hours without anyone falling over!)

Wednesday, October 12, 2011


Blue just found out today that he won't be having to go to station duty right after academy (like some of his other classmates)! He is posted to a division that specifically requested him! That means that he could be there for the next 5 years (which is an odd thought for us since we've bounced around so much for the past 5 years). He's overjoyed knowing that he'll be back in his patrol car cruising the streets in a week and a half.

So proud of my officer.

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Lovers' Quarrel

Posted by: Blue

The other day, on the last shift of my tour, we were dispatched to check the well-being of a female at an address of a 911 hang-up at a rooming house.

Enroute, my partner ran the address.  Over a dozen domestics in the last month.  A few different people mentioned.  Sometimes the female was the complainant, sometimes the male.  These were "frequent fliers".

We arrived, and proceeded to bang loudly on the door.  No answer.  Jefferson Airplane could be heard playing loudly on the other side of the door and the light shone through the bottom of the door.

We went back to the cruiser and messaged our Sgt. on the computer, asking permission to force entry into the apartment.

The Sgt. read the comments and a few minutes later messaged us back: "k.  you have permission to force entry to check the well-being".

I grabbed the pry bar from the trunk, though I wasn't sure I would need much muscle; the door appeared to have been breached countless times in the past, and it bore the scars of previous efforts.

We knocked one more time with no response and then my partner gave me the nod.  The door popped open like a wet cardboard box.  We peered in.  I couldn't see much from my angle, but I did see my partner roll his eyes and shake his head.

We walked in.  The lovers were sleeping on the couch with their heads each on opposite armrests.  She was naked (or at least topless, I didn't investigate below the sheets).  He was sleeping with a contented smile in sweats and a t-shirt.  It was clear whatever "distress" was originally present was now passed.

I glanced into the kitchen and found the stove burner glowing red-hot with two hot-knives sitting on the cooktop.  The handles were wrapped in duct tape to prevent burns.  Safety first I guess...

The couple was woken with some effort and sluggishly explained that they had been arguing about music.

We asked the female if the male was okay to stay there.  She said "Yeah.  I think he's okay now... nah... you know what... take him outta here."

"Is he on the lease?"


"Does he stay here regularly?"


"Alright, c'mon.  Let's go."

He got up, put on his jeans over his sweats and reluctantly came with us, looking rejected and sad.

We got out to the car and I asked "So you had a fight and then you made up and smoked a little weed together and then had some lovin'?"

"Yeah," he responded with a laugh and a sheepish grin.

"And now she wants the couch to herself hey?"

"I guess so," he replied, a little more forlorn.

"How 'bout we take you somewhere to sleep for a few hours and you can grab your clothes and things in the morning?"

"Yeah.  Thanks a lot guys.  You guys are alright."

We tanked him.  He talked about blues music the whole way there.

Sunday, October 2, 2011


Life has been normal. Well, as normal as it can get being married to a cop.

We've adjusted to shift work well, gotten used to The Boy being gone to school all day and are finding ways I can get out more while Blue is on shift.

Part of me wants to have crazy stuff happening so I could pump a few more posts out, but it's been quiet. Which is good.

Blue is enjoying his job. I'm enjoying having him around more. The kids are enjoying happier parents.

In one week he'll be finishing up his last shift and then heading back to Academy for two weeks to prepare for his graduation. We're all excited to see him marching around in his dress uniform.

He's done so well during his field training. I know he wouldn't in a million years come on here and write this, but I would...he's an awesome cop! Everyone likes him and he's already had a few requests sent in for him to join a specific division. He's found his niche and he loves it.

I'm so proud of him, I'm sure I'll be a blubbering idiot at his grad.

Thursday, September 22, 2011


Posted by: Blue

This past Sunday, while on evening shift, the Sergeant gave us an early leave to go for wings and a brew.

The four of us had a round of each and then headed off home.

Unbeknownst to us, three blocks away was a shooting just as we were leaving.

The suspect vehicle was described as a black Dodge Ram.

One of my shift-mates was driving a dark blue Chevy Silverado.

The helicopter picked him up on camera and sicced the night shift crew on him.  He was followed all the way accross the city to a few blocks away from home where he was taken down in a high-risk traffic stop.  Guns drawn, keys out the window, proned-out on the ground, whirlybird circling the entire time.

It was all the talk at Monday shift briefing.  He didn't think it was as funny as we did.

Monday, September 19, 2011

Manipulating the System

Posted by: Blue

Two nights ago, I arrested a gentleman who was on charge for beating up his girlfriend.  The girlfriend had returned to stay with him after his release from custody, along with her two young children.

The only way he was released from custody prior to the trial was to agree in front of a judge that he would live at a specific address (with his foster parents), not have any communication whatsoever with the victim, and if he did move, he was to notify the courts of his change of address prior to moving.

The 911 call came in as 2 young girls who were hiding at the neighbours house after their mother's boyfriend had smashed a door in the apartment.

The mother had left the girls in the boyfriend's care.  He was gone when we arrived, with only his roommate left in the house.

The girls were frightened and didn't know where their mother was or how to find her.  After searching for other family members that they could stay with to no avail, we dropped the 8 year old and 12 year old off at Child and Family Services.

Mom phoned 911 drunk and hysterical, suddenly worried about  her children's safety (though she didn't seem concerned about them being in the care of the man who had beat her only a month before).  I told her she could attend to the CFS location to speak with them about her children's well-being.

We swung back to the house and found that our suspect had returned.  He was arrested for Breaching x 2.

He tried every trick in the book to avoid going back to jail.  Yelling, screaming, begging, pleading, arguing, reasoning, faking illness, counter-accusing his "ex" girlfriend, threatening our jobs, telling us his mother had died and that that was why he was doing all these bad things.

He was locked-up to await a hearing scheduled for today.  Maybe the Judge will buy his stories.

Last night, the queue was quiet.  A low-priority domestic was sitting waiting in the line-up.  I clicked on it on the laptop.  The address jumped out at me.  It was originating at the jailhouse.

Our accused was now calling his foster father and telling him how police had attended and not allowed him to get a jacket when he was arrested, dragging him out of his dwelling and leaving the door open for anyone to walk in and steal.  Apparently his "ex" girlfriend had taken his cell phone and jacket.

My partner called the foster father and explained the real reason his son was locked-up and the fact that his son was in fact arrested outside his residence, his apartment was left in the care of his esteemed roommate who was told not to let the "ex" girlfriend back into the house, and that when I noticed our accused had no shoes on, I made an extra effort to retrieve the specific shoes that he requested from the front entrance of his home.  There was no request for a jacket and no reason for one as it was easily room temperature outside. 

There were a lot of questions, but in the end, the foster father sighed, and thanked us for our time.

I think I have a new pet project.  I wonder what angle he will try to work tonight.

Monday, August 29, 2011

Dogs for Drunks

Posted by: Blue

Last night at around 5:30 a.m., my partner and I were called to the General Hospital to pick up an intoxicated person and bring them to the tank.

Upon arrival, our subject was gone; he had sobered up while waiting and staff had let him walk.

While we were getting back into the cruiser, I was approached by a large mutt in need of a brushing.  He seemed harmless.  I reached my closed fist out.  He pushed his face into my hand for a pet.

No collar.  No tags.  Couldn't see a tattoo or a chip.  Hospital security told us they had been waiting on animal services all night.

My partner voiced on the radio: "November 105, Can you change our call to an animal call and show us enroute to the "jail" on Centre Street please?  One in custody."  The dispatcher stifled a laugh as she replied: "November 105, copy."

The pooch rode in the backseat quietly with his big ungroomed head poking into the front seat through the small window in our plexiglass shield.  I tried to get him to chew on my partner's epaulettes, but he wasn't listening.

The 24/7 shelter took him in and promised to try to find him a home.

I told my partner we probably got a better deal.  The dog seemed trained and was less likely to soil the backseat than a drunk was.

Saturday, August 13, 2011

Happy Wife

I had just crawled into bed when I got the text. Normally I go to bed before 10 but tonight I found myself wide awake at 11:30.

You awake?


Gonna swing by in a few.


Just for a kiss.

I bolted out of bed and threw on a sweater while scrambling down the stairs. I had yet to see Blue in his car all geared-up. I stood by the window and waited. He was just a few streets over looking for a guy wanted for a domestic.

Ten minutes went by. My heart beat a little faster with each set of headlights that shone down the road. I looked around at the other houses hoping that no one was watching.

The cruiser pulled-up in front of the house. Blue was driving. His partners face illuminated by the computer screen.

He walked up to the house and I couldn't help but have a huge grin on my face. He looked so...serious and professional in his uniform. His new earpiece gave him a bit of an 'FBI' bad ass look. Blue is 6'5" and his boots probably add another inch to his height so when he's completely outfitted he looks like the type of cop that you just don't want to mess with.

He came inside and I got all sheepish. I didn't know if I should hug him or stand back. I was embarrassed with how much I was smiling. He's happy and comfortable and succeeding and it all shows.

We had a quick kiss and then he was off again.

 I watched him get into his car and pull away. It was so strange to see him in his new normal...in his element. He's used to his uniform and his vest and his gun. He's used to his cruiser and his radio and his touch screen computer. He's used to the stops and stares. I'm only used to hearing stories and washing his uniform and being flexible with his shifts so it was strange for me to get an itty bitty glimpse of him as a police officer.

I loved it. I quite literally went to bed with a smile on my face.

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Bong Squad

Posted by: Blue

This morning, at the tail end of night shift, my paartner and I were dispatched to a call about a suspicious package.

The complainant had found what appeared to be a can or bottle wrapped in plastic shrink wrap with what appeared to be hoses attached.  The plastic wrap made it difficult to determine the exact nature of the package.

Exercising extra caution due to a string of arsons in the past few days in the surrounding area, we called our Sergeant.

The Sergeant called the Duty Inspector.

The Duty Inspector called the Bomb Unit.

We were relieved shortly after the call to the Bomb Unit by a day shift unit, including one of my friends from academy.  We left before the Bomb Unit arrived.

When I woke up before shift this evening, my friend texted me.  The mysterious package had been x-rayed with no suspicious results.  Upon further examination once it was determined to be non-volatile, the package was found to be a home-made bong.

At least the Bomb Unit got a good training run.

Saturday, August 6, 2011


Posted by: Blue

I went for a tour of our downtown station.  That location is our HQ and acts as a hub for a lot of our centralized units like the Court Disclosure and Arrest Processing Unit.  It also houses the unit that interfaces with the national records system: CPIC.

CPIC has all of the warrants that are currently in force that have been issued in the city.

There are currently approximatley 35 000 hard copy warrants in the system.

Population of the city: approximately 666 600

Per capita warrants: 5.26 warrants for every 100 people

Wednesday, August 3, 2011


Just read about the officer that was fatally shot in Rapid City, South Dakota yesterday.

Officer James Ryan McCandless, age 28.

Blue is 28.

They were both on duty at the same time.


My condolences go out to his family, his friends and his fellow officers.

Sunday, July 24, 2011

Take it in Stride

Shift work.

It was the one thing that I feared most when thinking of how our lives were going to change. I thought that the erratic work schedule would be my downfall. I could deal with the danger. I could deal with long hours (Blue did plenty of overtime as a carpenter). I could deal with the craziness and the anonymity of being a police family. But shift work? I don't think so. I wouldn't ever see Blue. He wouldn't ever see the kids. We wouldn't ever spend time getting together with friends again. I wouldn't be able to rely on him for anything...at least that's how it played out in my head.

Truth be told, it's gone swimmingly. Blue kept telling me that we would be spending more time together as a family and that I just needed to give it a shot. I found it hard to believe but I tried to stay optimistic and now he can give point his finger and give me the ol' "I told ya so!" I feel like we have so much more quality time together. Because Blue has four days off in a row in between each shift we are getting things done around the house and the kids are able to get more focused attention from their dad. Instead of needing to pack all of our R&R into two days on the weekend we can space things out.

So far we've only had two hiccups with sorting our new hours out. There was one stretch of days where Blue booked-up his time off with friends and camping and helping some guys out and didn't spend any time with us. That sucked. We argued and realized that the kids and I need more face time with him on his days off. The other time was when I woke him up a bit too early after an evening shift (which ends at 2:30 in the morning). My fault.

Because The Boy is on summer break and the only routine thing that I have during the week is church I'm finding that I'm quickly losing track of days. I often think that it's a Monday when it's actually a Friday or Saturday. I usually go over to the calendar to see what day of the week it is just so that I can sort myself out.

One thing that I told myself going into this life was not to expect Blue to be home right when his shift ends. Days: 7:00 until big question mark. Evenings: 4:30 until big question mark. Nights: 9:30 until big question mark. This way I don't get my expectations up and suffer the disappointment of missed family dinners (note to self: keep a bottle wine handy). I'm trying not to plan anything for him to attend during his stretch of shifts and, for the most part, let him unwind on his first day off.

I've heard it from a number of other police wives and I would have to agree, I'm becoming more independent and learning how to take things in stride. It's good. I think for too long (especially during the baby years) I was glued to Blue. I would get so disappointed and down when he wasn't home for dinner and working on the weekends. Now that I know we have four days together in between each shift I'm able to let-go.

With all that said, it helps that we don't have babies in the house and that I'm not working. I don't know how you wives do it with trying to keep little kids quiet while daddy is trying to sleep!

Monday, July 18, 2011

The Honeymoon is Over

Blue answered a call for a domestic the other day.

It was between two men.

They were married.

It was an argument over husband number one's beer getting on husband number two's hair extentions.

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Safe and Sound

The light began to peek through the curtains by the time Blue crawled into bed. I hadn't noticed that he had worked through the whole night. I must have been really tired.

I rolled over and turned to see him.

"Everything okay?" I croaked.

"Ya, just waiting at the hospital with someone" he mumbled back.

"Love you." He slid his hand in mine.

"Love you too."

We were both asleep within seconds.

I don't really care what time he gets home from this job, as long as he gets home safe and sound.

Sunday, July 3, 2011

Enjoying Summer

Enjoying some of our beautiful weather while kayaking with The Boy.

Friday, June 24, 2011

Second Shift: Stickers and Ballons

Posted by: Blue

Today was the first arrest that I was involved with.  I charged and cautioned a 43 year old male for Uttering Threats.  They all tell me that I'll remember my first arrest for the rest of my career.  We'll see.  I found the whole thing relatively uneventful.  I guess because I would have expected the same reaction that I might have if I found-out that I was being arrested.  He just calmly turned around, put his hands behind his back, and my partner cuffed him.  Later, at the station, he fell asleep in the cell while waiting for the paperwork to go through the Sergeant.  As we walked in to serve him his court and ident dates, he yawned, glanced them over, and said "OK.  Thanks guys.  Hey, so are you just gonna turn me out in front of the station?  Or could I get a ride to my sister's house?"

We asked where his sister lived.  She wasn't far.  We drove him down to a drug store nearby and released him back into the wild.  The whole call was quite unremarkable.

On the other hand, the thing that I think will stand-out in my memory from today was a light tap on my shoulder from an older woman.  She wanted me to come and say something to her grandson who was  outside of the store where we were picking-up coffee.  I happily joined her after the clerk waved me through with a free coffee (a perk that I really could get used to), and was introduced to Quinn, a 7 year old boy with a smile on his face. 

Quinn's grandmother nudged him, and he smiled bigger, and said "Thank-you for doing your job to keep the city safe."  His grandmother said "We'll keep praying for all of you."  I said "I can never have too many of those."

I don't think I'll ever forget that.

I gave Quinn one of the balloons that was in my vest pocket, and two stickers.  He smiled bigger, and then he came over to the cruiser to meet my FTO.  Frank smiled and asked him how old he was and if he wanted to be a police officer when he grew up.  I didn't quite hear his response, but it sounded like he said something about it being a toss-up between a police officer and a hockey player.

As the two walked away and I saddled-up in the driver's seat, Frank volunteered, "You're getting full marks for Community Relations."  I have another officer to thank for that.  Raindog, I tip my hat.

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Second Call

Posted By: Blue

I try not to contradict my wife whenever possible, but I would like to point-out that on Sunday evening, I was actually attending my second call.  My first call was here, and I'm sticking to it.

First call of my first actual shift was a sudden death (SD).  Great way to start out.  Guess it was gonna happen sooner or later.

Dude "expired" on the toilet (how cliche).  He was apparently a bit of a loner.  He called in sick Wednesday and Thursday.  Family didn't find him until Sunday.  The Medical Examiner Investigator thinks he may have actually called in sick for Thursday a day before, because he was pretty far gone. 

We advised the family not to take a look at the body.  He wasn't himself.  My Field Training Officer (FTO) took down all the relevant info while I took everything else in (the sights, the smells... the tastes... He really was decomposed.  It hung in the air.).  I had been worried about my first dead body, but as it turned out, I felt confident and at ease.  We returned to the station and my FTO wrote a lengthy report.

The remainder of the shift was relatively quiet.  We ran a few plates, attended a family disturbance, and a noise complaint.  I wrote a short report on the family disturbance, but the noise complaint was deuced (cleared with no report) with just a few comments on the computer.

And so ended my first shift.  Now I'm on four days off.  I start a six day stretch of day-shift again Friday.  Looking forward to it!

Monday, June 20, 2011

There's a First for Everything - Part II

A few more firsts that have been noteworthy:

1. First special occasion (father's day) where I had to share my husband with the city and spend dinner at my mom's with the kids.

2. First time I kissed Blue goodbye and gave him the old "Stay safe out there" line.

3. First time I received a text from my officer while he was on duty letting me know how things were going.

4. First time I went to bed by myself knowing that Blue was out on the streets, keeping the city safe.

Blue is still sleeping. I'm sitting at the kitchen table with the kids while they eat their breakfast making sure they keep quiet. We only talked for a moment when he got home early this morning but it sounds like he had a really good first shift...and a crazy first call.

Saturday, June 18, 2011

All Smiles

We were all smiles around the dinner table last night.

Seconds after walking through the door Blue had his shinny new badge out, showing it off to the kids and I. He had just finished meeting his Field Training Officer and his Sargent, packing-up his Academy locker and unpacking everything into his district locker.

Blue wrote his final test on Monday (he got a great mark, btw)  and ran the PO-PAT on Wednesday (shaved a bunch off of his original time too). On Thursday he was issued his 'piece' and on Friday he was given his review from his platoon Sargent (a glowing review I might add).

Blue was pounding his fist on the table in emphasis over how excited he is about a number of things and Waffle was pounding hers right along with him (although I'm sure she had no idea what he was talking about). The Boy wanted to sit beside him at dinner because, in his words, "Daddy's a cop...he's cool", and I eagerly ate-up every little bit of info he shared about the division he was placed in.

I know that there are hard, tired days up ahead and a very sharp learning curve looming over our heads but it's nice to feel this excited and optimistic about Blue's job. It's nice that he finished that portion of Academy at the top of his game. It's also nice that other's seem to see how well suited he is for this work. I'll let him blog more about it later since I don't want to steal all of his thunder...but I'm just so dang proud of that guy!

Monday, June 13, 2011

Blue Man Group

I was walking the kids home from school around noon last Friday. The sun was shining, it was a beautiful day. Waffle was having a piggy back and The Boy was zooming around, minding his business on his scooter.

We were one block away from our street when I started seeing a lot of blue...and not the good kind. Freakin' gangs. There were roughly fifteen young guys standing in the front yard of a derelict house. The same house where shots were fired a few weeks ago. I've seen people hanging around that house before but it's hard to imagine that anyone actually lives there. Maybe no one does. Maybe it's a convenience store of sorts.

I tried not to lock eyes with anyone. A whole other group of the blue guys were walking up the sidewalk to the home. A million scenarios came rushing through my mind, a normal occurrence when your arm hair stands on end and your spidey goes off. After the kids and I passed, a truck came roaring down the street with a few more sitting in the back, hooting and hollering.

I picked-up the pace.

Ugh, East District.

Monday, June 6, 2011

Highs and Lows

(This post is inspired by John Rambo's Wife's most recent post just to give a bit of a random update since it's been so quiet around here.)

A number of years ago I lived in a house with a bunch of other girls (who, before moving in, were complete strangers to me). The house was very plain, nothing fancy. Whenever I'm asked to think back to my favorite place in the world I always think about the back porch that was attached to the kitchen of 81 Livingstone. It was our dining room. We had a huge table that sat on the covered porch and we ate all of our meals at it. Each night we all gathered around the table and talked over dinner about our days, the highs and the lows. It didn't hurt that our neighbour's daughter would choose that hour to practise her incredible opera singing. It also didn't hurt that the house was in tropical Australia.

Highs and Lows became kind-of a game for us each night. We would share our stories, however personal or deep or funny or embarrassing they were. With each story we grew closer and closer to each other and after a few months we felt like a family.

(All of that was just a back story for why I'm calling it "Highs and Lows") So today I'll share a high and a low with you but I'll let you guess which is which.

Blue got his schedule and his first shift is less than two weeks away.

Blue and I were on our way out to a wedding a few days ago when the transmission in our truck blew.

There. Highs and Lows. Feel free to share yours.

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

The 11th Hour

Posted by: Blue


Less than 4 weeks left.

I will officially be posted to field training by the 21st.  I'm not sure just yet how my shifts will look, but I am hoping for "B-side" (the second set of shifts who are on when A-side is off; see 4-10) .  I hope that my marks will grease the wheels in that direction.  I've made some good friends who all seem to be headed for B-side, including some excellent instructors and training officers.

I've got to admit, I'm feeling slightly apprehensive about being on the street for the first time.  I will have my gun, badge, OC spray, and ID card issued on the second-last day of classes.  Then within a few days, I am off to my second call.

We have had a few very interesting lectures in the past few weeks, including two officers who had been involved in lethal-force encounters.  Both officers had shot and killed their suspects.  One was 8 weeks out of the academy.  A sobering thought.

Last week we had some training with fighting and use-of-force.  One of the days we were given blue-guns (a working pistol by the same manufacturer as our service pistol that shoots blanks and Simunition rounds), and we ran through a number of encounters from suicidals to knives to compliant people to shoot-outs.  It was the first time any of us had pointed a gun at another human.  It was also the first time that I found myself picturing a person dead by my hand.  I hope and pray that I never have to take that life.

On a lighter note, this past weekend was a long one for us.  I went camping with some friends from academy.  We probably all should have been studying for tomorrow's test, but we couldn't help ourselves.  I brought my leaky old boat with my faithful 1972 motor, and we managed to catch our lunch one day.  Two big Pickerel (Though I think any of you Yankees reading might know them as Walleye).  It rained most of the weekend, but we made the best of it.  I love these new friends and comrades.  One thing is certain: I know I can trust each and every one of them with my life.  That's a reassuring feeling.

I'm really interested, given my impending street-baptism, to hear some stories of your first days out there, and what it feels like to "go live" for the first time.  Hope you're all having a good day.


Wednesday, May 11, 2011


Poor Blue. He's doing his Stress Inoculation at Academy this week. I've never seen him so exhausted.

I keep getting texts from him saying things like, "So-and-so just threw-up" or "So-and-so just broke their toe" or "So-and-so just broke their nose" or "So-and-so was just carried out on a stretcher" or "The ex-football player just knocked me out".

Poor Blue.

Although, I can see how it's helpful. They need to know that when they are at their lowest and ready to give up there are still reserves of energy and they can pull through. I'm so proud of him for even being able to show-up for another day of hell.

I was exhausted just listening to all they went through. I'm sure he'll post about it soon.

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Well Hello There Officer...

I had to stop by the Academy yesterday to drop something off for Blue. I walked down the stairs just as he was coming out of the gym, in his uniform. He gave me a big smile.


There were some other officers hanging around so I was trying to keep my face to a decent colour. I'm sure you can all guess what the 'problem' is, but for those of you who need it spelt-out a little bit better, here it is.

Blue looks damn fine in his uniform. And I mean fine.

I get to see him again tonight at Academy. There is another Family Night (sans kids) and this time they are dealing with how best to support your officer. I'm really looking forward to the evening. I mean really. Really.

What is it about the uniform that's so....hm....appealing? Do you other police wives swoon at the sight and jump at the opportunity to see your men looking all dapper in their work wear? Or is it just that this is such  a new thing for me?

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

First Call

Posted By: Blue

Today, during a vehicle stopping training exercise, my training partner and I were in our cruiser in a large grocery store parking lot, when we noticed someone waving us over.  Our driving instructor said "Well boys, although you're still in training, you're still cops."  We drove over to the citizen and rolled down our windows.  It was a hit and run.  There was an elderly woman who backed up into him a short time ago, flipped him the bird, and told him to "fuck off".  We parked the cruiser and our instructor got out.  Just then another cruiser that had been dispatched rolled up.  The two officers took over.  We cleared on a deuce (no report), and sluffed the call (left it for another crew).  If we had been on duty, it would have been a terrible way to deal with a call.  Under our circumstances, it couldn't have gone smoother.

Although there was nothing that came of our encounter, and our instructor actually did most of the talking, it sure didn't stop us bragging to our classmates that we were the first crew to respond to an actual live encounter.  We are officially the two most experienced officers in the recruit class.

Saturday, April 9, 2011

Same Old - Same Old

I'm so happy for Blue. I don't think that anyone is as proud and excited for him as I am. I love seeing him come home from work with a smile on his face. I love that he looks forward to the next day. I love hearing all about what they're learning and doing.


With his life becoming so exciting, I've started to feel like my life, well....er....isn't.

I've been a stay-at-home mom for almost 6 years now. I get together with friends, I'm involved in our church community, I do the odd thing here and there with the kids but none of those things feel very exciting. They are all normal to me. I like them but....hm....I'm just not sure how to put it.

Traveling is exciting to me. Going to Haiti last year was over-the-moon exciting. Boxing is exciting to me. I used to box (just for a little while...just enough to get the boxing-bug) at a local club and I enjoyed it so much. It was different and unexpected. Blue and I went on a hiking trip last year. We got a bit rained-out but it was a huge challenge, both mentally and physically. All of the things that I can think of that I'd like to do cost money or take time, both of which we seem to be a bit short on these days. Boxing. A puppy. Going back to school. Hiking. Rowing/Kayaking. Camping. Traveling. Boxing. A puppy. Did I mention boxing?

I feel as though I'm living vicariously through Blue, trying to live a bit of his excitement.

Does anyone else ever feel like this?

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Use of Force

Posted by: Blue

On Monday, twelve of us were pepper sprayed.  We spent the morning on drawing out our OC spray, practicing in a static environment.  Then at 1300 hrs, we were "exposed".

My goodness.

What a terrible thing for someone to invent to use on another human being.  I felt like I was going to go blind.  Seriously.  They told us over and over before we were sprayed that it would feel terrible but that we could fight through it, but when that Oleoresin Capsicum hit my eyes, I thought it was all over.  Somehow I managed to find the volunteer "suspect", and give him a flurry of knee strikes while telling him to get on the ground.  When he finally proned-out, I was able to draw my training gun and give instructions, and then somehow recite the circumstances where an intermediate weapon is justified.

When I finished my tasks, an instructor took my arm and led me into the academy building, down the satirs and into the showers, but not before tripping outside and walking into a wall inside.

The water did nothing but temporarily soothe the burning.  The tearless baby soap that I poured into my eyes was useless.

Finally, after 20 minutes of splashing cold water on my face, I bit the bullet and dried my face, accepting the burning until the effects wore off another 25 minutes later.

It is the most pain I have ever experienced.  I have cut the tip of my thumb off on a table saw, cut a gash in my leg from ankle to knee with an inner-tube valve stem, exposing my ankle bone, and stepped on a rusty nail that punctured an inch into my foot.  Those were nothing compared to pepper spray.  I hate pepper spray.  The only thing on earth that might cause more pain and discomfort than pepper spray might be giving birth sans-drugs with two shattered femurs.

Tasering, on the other hand was like a quiet stroll on a warm spring day in the park compared to the OC spray.  Not that it didn't hurt, but it was over as soon as it started.  We were all drive-stunned on Wednesday.  Our Service didn't have authorization at the time to give us the full 5 seconds of "riding the lightning".

I'm planning on requesting to re-do the tasering in six months when the next recruit class is doing their taser "exposures".  They should have authorization by then.

Thank God that we are on to computer week.  No significant chance of grievous bodily harm or death.

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

There's a First for Everything Part II

1. First Urban Tactical catalogue brought home. Blue drooled the whole time while reading it.
2. After perusing the catalogue, Blue started talking about a 'Go Bag'. Oh yes, he's caught the Go Bag bug.

3. I now understand why police wives joke about their cops having more accessories than Barbie. It's all starting to make sense now...

4. Blue's first target practise sheets were brought home and are now displayed as artwork on our walls. No, it was not my idea. No, I'm not happy about it. (Funny story though: Blue showed off his days work and explained how his first day at the range went. I admired his good aim and then went about my day, getting dinner ready. I happened to walk down to the basement to grab something. Something looked different. My content expression slowly turned into a look of disgust as I realized the sheets had been pinned onto our basement walls...right beside our TV...and we had people coming over! I walked back upstairs to ask Blue to take them down and explain that, 'no, target sheets are NOT artwork'. As I got into the kitchen The Boy zoomed passed me while frantically yelling, "Mom, where's my police gun!??!" Soon after I hear him yelling "POW-POW" while practising his aim. Blue wouldn't take them down. Ugh.)

Friday, March 25, 2011

Dear Blue

Dear Blue,

I was stopped at a red light the other night at a busy intersection while driving home. The radio was blaring to keep my sleepy eyes open but I wasn't tuned in. My mind was wandering to other things when I heard the sirens and, soon after, saw the lights. A cruiser was going code down a busy street. It was gone within seconds leaving me still waiting for the green but a smile crept up onto my face. I pictured you in the car, patrolling the night, keeping your city safe. Pride swelled in my heart for what you are undertaking, what you are becoming; an unsung hero. You will be punched, yelled at, spat on, and called horrid names. You will run to what others will be running from. You will see this city at it's worst, the shame and the depravity, but you will keep on going, day after day, with little praise and accolades. You understand the challenge of leading this life, the toll it can take, but you've decided to walk it with your head held high doing the best damn job that you can.

My train of thought was broken by some horrid noises coming out of the radio, Ke$ha. *shudder* I switched the station. The Tragically Hip were playing which reminded me of you once again and the smile returned. The light turned green and I was off, rushing home to spend time with you.

I sure do love you.


Tuesday, March 22, 2011


Posted By: Blue

So I knew that the city I live and work in had a good police service when I applied.  I just don't think I realized how good I would really have it if I did get on.

We were told the first few weeks to hold our heads high, as we were amongst the few and proud.  At first I thought it was mostly rhetoric and, dare I say... propaganda?  But as the weeks have rolled on and we have had instructor after instructor praising our service, I am definitely getting the opinion that there was never a need for the Brass to lecture our staff about promoting morale by towing the party line.  These cops really do love their jobs and their city.  They love their pay and their vacation time.  They love the fact that we are one of the only cities in North America with a mandatory 2 officers per car.

Our standard shifts are the "4-10" shift (basically supposed to work-out to four ten-hour shifts per seven calendar days).  We rotate with one stretch of days, then evenings, then nights. We have the opportunity to work 5 on, 4 off, with one overlap day per rotation.  That means that every fifth day, there are twice as many cops on duty as any other day.  It gives us the opportunity to do fun stuff like help the detectives, or jump into plain clothes and do vice, or work in stolen autos.  The list is endless.  If you really want, you can use the fifth day to finish paperwork or just take it off with banked overtime. 

And don't get me started on overtime!  Man, there are times when we are going to court and sitting for twenty minutes, only to hear the case has been plead, or that we will not be needed.  That means, if we are there on a scheduled day-off, we are entitled to 10 hours of time in-lieu-of, plus 15 hours of pay.

To boot, we have 3 weeks of paid leave to start (and it quickly builds with years-on), plus every time we work a stat holiday, we get another day in-lieu-of.  Then there's actually sick time.  Three weeks of it per year accumulative.  Man, when I was in construction, I would go into work puking just so I wouldn't miss a day's pay.  Talk about an upgrade.

Now I'm interested as to what kind of scheduing everyone else does?  Care to share?  For instance, the firefighters and paramedics in our city have a 4 on, 4 off split shift (12 hours/shift).  They are currently thinking about going to a 24 hour shift, then 2 days off, then another 24 hour shift, then 5 off (I think that's how it goes...).

Thursday, March 17, 2011

St. Patty's Day

I wish it was green outside today. It would be more fitting. The Boy rolled out of bed and hardly had a second to open up his eyes before he was already getting out the green construction paper.

The snow is coming down hard and fast, falling atop the already massive piles of snow in my front yard. Sigh. Spring, where are you?

Regardless of the winter weather we are still having, the inside of our house is all St. Patrick's Day. Shamrock crafts - check. Irish Stew - Check. Guinness cooling in the fridge - Check. Everyone wearing green - Check. Mumford and Sons blasting on the stereo - Double Check! Irish Soda Bread - Almost check.

I'm trying to get the kids to embrace their Irish roots. The Boy has been obsessed with Shamrocks for the past week. I'm Irish/Italian and Blue is British/Scottish. We're a feisty bunch.

I didn't really grow-up celebrating St. Patty's Day but since having kids I've enjoyed starting little traditions or partaking in different holiday's/celebrations/festivals. I think it's important to have family traditions, things for the kids to look forward to. It creates a sense of togetherness and belonging.

Is there anything special you do or are doing today?

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Family Night

Well, our first Family Night was a success!

I showed-up with the kids a little early (which, apparently, everyone else had thought to do as well). After making sure my hair wasn't tossed around and my hands weren't shaking too badly we braved the cold and walked into the building. The first few moments were probably the most intimidating. All of the recruits were standing just inside the front doors, waiting to claim their arriving friends and family. All eyes fell on the people walking through the doors and it was clear there were many, "Ah, so that's so-and-so's spouse..." looks going around. I think Blue's class was eager to meet some of the spouses and kids they'd been hearing stories of for the past few weeks. I was introduced to some of Blue's group. Two of the girls came up and gushed over The Boys cowboy boots he was wearing.

We were then ushered into the gym for a brief run-down of how the evening would go and then broken-up into groups and shuffled around to different rooms to hear different presentations.

Our first presentation was from the Firearm's guys. The Boy was excited because he got to hold a Glock and put on a Kevlar vest. After that we went to hear all about the Use of Force training and see some of the 'tools' they use. I think the coolest thing that I saw all night was a knife that they use during simulation training. It's called a Shocknife and it sends an electric pulse around the edges of the blade so that when you're 'cut' it makes it feel as though you've actually been cut. It was a pretty interesting looking tool. I liked the Use of Force guys...you could tell they love their jobs.

Next was a demonstration from the K-9 Unit (which the kids loved), Vehicle Operations Unit, a tour through the Police Museum (very interesting!) and finally a presentation from the Bomb Squad. After all of that we had a few moments to grab a drink and mingle about. By that time (9:30pm) the kids were starting to implode so I didn't really walk around and chat with anyone. I got a picture of the four of us (with Blue in his uniform) and then we left.

The recruits were allowed to invite family and friends to that event so it was pretty crowded and hard to see who was with who. There will be a few more family evenings intended for immediate family members only so I'm hoping to connect with some more people then. I did end-up chatting with one lovely woman but I had no idea who she 'belonged' to. Hopefully I'll run into her again.

One thing that I appreciated was that there were NO statistics or scare tactics. One guy had a list of books that would be helpful to read if anyone wanted access to them. A few of the presenters mentioned how important family support was and to keep your officer doing the things that he enjoyed doing before becoming a cop, but it was mainly an information evening for everyone to see what your loved one has been up to or will be up to.

I'm glad that I can now picture the rooms Blue is spending his days in and the people he is spending them with.

One comment trickled down through the grape vine yesterday. A female officer made a comment to Blue about me and, I must say, it made my day. I know that I need to be more confident with the fact that I am likable, but meeting new people seems to be one area that I have a hard time getting over. I'm just happy that Blue is 6'5"...he's good for hiding behind. (Kidding)

Tuesday, March 8, 2011


Foray - An initial attempt (especially outside your usual areas of competence)

Tonight is Family Night down at the academy. There will be a bunch of different units 'performing' for all of the kids. Blue will be in uniform. There's a mingling time with refreshments so all the 'other-halfs' can be introduced and all the officers can show-off their children. Blue's mom and step-dad are even coming down to join in the fun. 

I'm nervous. I've been thinking about this night for two weeks now. I guess part of me is excited to see what Blue has been up to and have some faces and places to put to stories he's been telling me, but I'm mainly nervous. The Boy has been counting down the days. Waffle yelps out, "Mama, Mcademy!" whenever anyone says the word 'academy'.

I bought a new shirt. I went and got my hair cut last week.

I have a hard time meeting new people. I have a hard time with crowds. I have a horrid time meeting new people in crowds.

I've spent a lot of time moving out of my 'comfort zone' this past year, putting myself out there to know and be known, to like and be liked. It's something that I've always struggled with and I'm finally starting to move past it....kind-of. I've come leaps and bounds from where I used to be, but the idea of being in a situation that is so totally foreign to me with so many strangers to talk to makes me nervous.

So tonight is my first foray into this whole police wife thing. I'll let you know how it goes.

Fake it 'till you make it, right?

Thursday, March 3, 2011

TPB Statement

Blue had some homework today. He needed to practise taking a statement. His homework was to find a family member or friend and take a statement on the last TV show that they watched.

Obviously, I was picked.

And what was the last TV show that I watched that has now been recorded, in statement form, for Blue's "higher-up's" to read about?

An episode from Season 4 of Trailer Park Boys.

Oops. Sorry Blue.

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

There's a First for Everything

Some firsts that have been noteworthy (for me, at least):
  1. First load of my policeman's uniform washed and dried.
  2. First test done and out of the way - Criminal Code 24/7 for the past week and it's only just the beginning.
  3. First time I woke-up to Blue's dreams being affected by his police work (I suppose I should say 'learning')...he was yelling-out drills in his sleep last night.

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Chess and Checkers

Posted by: Blue

You know, the more I think about it; the more I learn about this new job of mine, the more I think about it as a game.

Now don't get me wrong.  I don't mean to imply that it's the kind of game that my kids play on their Playstation, or the kind you might host at a dinner party.  On the contrary, it's a game of life and death;  justice and injustice; crime and punishment; victim and criminal.  It matters everthing that we, the Good Guys, win the game.

The more I learn about the law and about prosecution and defense, I realize that criminals and their lawyers are playing games every day.  The difference seems to be that we, the Good Guys, know the true stakes (or maybe the bad guys know too but just don't care).  We know the devastation of lives after a robbery or a rape or a murder.  We live through the fallout of abuse and violence every day of our careers.  The overwhelming sense that I get when learning from the senior officers at academy, is that most of the time, when prosecuting the criminals and bad guys, you know, you KNOW that the person is guilty.  You KNOW that they have taken a life, or beaten their wife to within inches of death, or abused a child, or even so simply were travelling over the speed limit.  You KNOW.  There is little or no doubt in many of the cases.

The argument for the defense then becomes one of procedure or of infractions.  The argument becomes one of fundamental rights of the accused.  The argument becomes: "Did the officers complete their duties to the letter of the law?  Were all the I's dotted and T's crossed?"  The argument becomes technicalities and loopholes.

Now, there was a time in my life when I would have said that if someone was guilty, they should simply be locked-up and the key tossed.  No screwing around with "bullshit" loopholes or technicalities.  I still believe that the guilty must, and will pay, but I have begun to understand the role that rights and freedoms play in society on a deeper level.  The guaranteed rights and freedoms that we have here in Canada under our Charter of Rights and Freedoms are absolutely necessary to protect the innocent.  If they were simply thrown away when a police officer guaranteed on oath that a person was guilty, there would be no point in establishing those rights and freedoms.

The difficulty has always been that those freedoms can also become a refuge for the guilty if the officers who are bringing them to court have not executed their duties in a manner that upholds the law at a level that is above reproach.

I think that as I have sat and listened to stories, lectures and case law, I have begun to develop the sense that this game that we are playing isn't checkers.  It's not just a lazy, whimsical thing.  This is chess.  There are rules.  There are details.  There are strategies.  If I'm not playing every day at the top of my game, I lose.  And when I lose, the guilty go free.  It's a sobering thought.

But if it's had any effect on me, it has been to strengthen my resolve to play the best damn game of chess that I can, every day of my life.

Bring it on, defense lawyers.  I'll be ready.

Thursday, February 24, 2011


Posted by: Blue

Today, after handing my Primary Officer a Special Report for the Chief, I headed back down the hall and up the stairs to rejoin the class in the computer lab.  As I left, I heard my Sergeant call me back.  I jumped back down the stairs.

My Sergeant wanted to mention that last week during a Problem Based Learning exercise (PBL), he had taken an exceptional notice to my leadership and grasp of the material.  He said he was impressed and that I should keep-up the good work.  I thanked him for his encouragement and again dismissed myself.

I haven't stopped grinning since I turned about-face.  Encouragement is a real motivator.

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Change of Heart

The Boy: Mom, I changed my mind.

Me: About what?

The Boy: I don't want to be a firefighter helicopter pilot anymore (which he's wanted to be for 2 years now).

Me: Well, what do you want to be?

The Boy: I want to go to daddy's school and become a police officer.

*Since this conversation he's been practicing everything he thinks a police officer knows how to do...but mainly it consists of walking several paces from a window and turning around, fairly quickly, and shooting a suction dart at a desired area (he closes the blinds half way so it becomes more of a challenge).

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

V is for Valentine

Valentine's Day went pretty much as I had expected it to...uneventful. I would be lying if I said that a small part of me didn't want some sort of showy event, but to be honest, I'm fine with just staying home. As long as Blue actually remembers that it's V-day I'm happy.

I made sure that I gave him plenty of hints for what I actually wanted. "Blue, aren't those nice cards that the kids got from their grandma? I sure do like those cards. They were so happy to get a card for Valentine's Day."

Blue got home from Academy carrying a card and my favorite chocolate bar (Lindt Ecuador Dark). I was happy to see that the man can take a hint. The card was perfect. Short and sweet. All I wanted was a card...and a glass of wine. What I didn't want was to feel horribly sick, which I did. I ended-up crashing in bed just after 9. Blue was memorizing the Criminal Code and I was supposed to be making sure he wasn't messing up, but I couldn't keep my eyes open.

So that was Valentine's Day. Blue cuddled-up with homework and me, sound asleep beside him.

Saturday, February 12, 2011

Walking Tall

I've noticed, just in the past day or so, that Blue is walkin' tall (although, at 6'5" this comes fairly naturally). His shoulders seem to be back a little further. His head seems to be held a little higher.

While driving in the truck today I decided to ask him about this. I broached the subject about the slight shift and once he thought about it he realized it was true, he did feel a bit different. I offered my two cents for why this might be.

1. You aren't griping about your crappy boss all the time.
2. You're learning about stuff that you're actually interested in.
3. You're happy to be changing careers.

Blue agreed with all of these observations but then said that it was still over and above all of that, it was that he feels liberated to progress. I liked what he said.

When you're beaten down for so long and your talents are stifled/unwanted it's like someone closed the blinds on life. It's hard to notice when the sun is out. But when someone actually notices your potential and comes along side of you to help you be your best and is eager to see you succeed, man, that's when the sun shines its brightest. You feel as though there is no limit to what you can achieve.

It's good to see him happy and smiling when he gets home at the end of the day.
Yes, Blue has been walking tall. He feels supported by everyone around him; friends, family, officers, fellow recruits, heck, even the Use of Force guys that are trying to kill him three days a week.

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Day 2

Posted by: Blue

After cutting the lock off my locker with a set of bolt cutters generously provided by one of the Use of Force instructors (apparently The service buys better, harder-to-pick pad locks than I do), I changed into uniform, informed our class supervisor of my shortcomings, and received my punishment: a short presentation on the necessary conditions to release a person from custody. Not a bad assignment.  Plus, the new lock I got has a combination.  Not a key.

First inspection and drill today. It was fun. Didn't take long to teach us rookies the basics of standing "at attention", "at ease", and "easy".

Tomorrow morning is voluntary "caveman" workout with the Use of Force instructors.  Sounds like fun.

Same Dad

The Boy had been sitting on a chair watching the sidewalk in front of our house like a hawk. Daddy was going to be home soon.

The back door slowly cracked open and The Boy went running to the other side of the house. Blue came up the back lane. The Boy rounded the corner and stopped dead in his tracks.

Where's the uniform? Where's the cop car? He was confused. He thought his daddy was supposed to be a cop now, so why did he look like the same ol' daddy?

He turned and walked away...a bit disappointed.

Monday, February 7, 2011

Day 1

Posted by: Blue

Today, I rode the bus to academy.  I was there early.  Too early.  Doors were locked.

We met the chief today.  He shook each of our hands, and welcomed us, and handed us our epaulettes with badge numbers embroidered in gold.  I've seen him on TV, and liked his charisma.  I liked him even more in person.

Our instructors introduced themselves.  We met our platoon Primaries.  We stood around during brief breaks in the first day routine, looking awkward in our new uniforms, and speculating about the next 19 weeks.

At the end of the day, after lectures from the Chief, Inspector and Staff Sergeant about the high expectations for our performance, attention to detail, and diligence, we were dismissed.

As I changed back into my "civvies", I made-up my mind to do my best all through training to be at the top of my class.  I hung up my dress pants neatly in my locker, put some study material in my bag, and locked my locker to go home.

Trouble is, the key to my locker is still in my dress pants.  Locked inside my locker.  First inspection is tomorrow morning.

I've been practicing lock-picking all evening on a couple of spare padlocks.  Think I've got it down-pat...


Today's the day. THE day. THE. DAY! We've finally made it after 15 months of waiting.

Blue becomes a cop today...well, a cop in training at least. His hair is cut and his boots are polished (about 50 times over). He popped out of bed at a ridiculous hour, sleep was simply out of the question. He's left his truck full of beloved tools at home and has replaced it with a bus and a backpack full of books. He couldn't be happier.

Good luck Blue.
I can't wait to hear all about your first day!

Monday, January 31, 2011

Cops and Robbers

Waffle set-up a coffee shop in our living room yesterday. She even had a drive-thru window for those of us who were too rushed from cleaning the house to sit down and have coffee and a doughnut. She was taking orders, filling said orders, taking money and giving change like a pro. She was excited to be serving everyone a cup of coffee but made the mistake of putting all of her play money right by the drive-thru window.

The Boy pulled-up in his pretend car to order a cup of coffee. Waffle turned her back and the money was scooped-up and quickly carried away in greedy little 5-year-old hands.

Well, 'Coffee Shop' soon turned into a game of 'Cops and Robbers' since Blue was sitting on the couch watching all of this unfold. He jumped up and chased The Boy all over the house. Obviously The Boy was tackled to the ground, read his rights and carried off to jail (beaming and giggling the whole time). The money was returned to Waffle and she carried on serving tasty treats.

Can you guess what The Boy's favorite game is now?

Friday, January 28, 2011

Nighttime Prayers

The Boy: Mom, we need to pray.
Me: Okay, what do you want to pray for?
The Boy: I want to thank God that daddy is becoming a cop and that he's going to get the bad guys so our city will be safe.

Too cute.

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Just a Glimpse

Yesterday Blue got a glimpse into what his next year will be like as an academy recruit. He went to the recruit building for his sign-in and then to the academy for his orientation. Before he left in the morning he was so excited (and slightly nervous) he couldn't sit still. Pacing around the kitchen table he kept looking over his list making sure he had everything he needed.

I was looking forward to all of the material we'd be receiving; pamphlets, books, binders, sheets, all filled with juicy tid-bits for my information-hungry mind to eat-up. Anything that helps me to understand this new life my husband is entering into is a good thing. Anything that will help me support him better is a good thing.

Yesterday was also the day that I received a few books I'd ordered on-line (my first ever on-line book order!). John Rambo's Wife pointed me in the direction of, I Love a Cop: What Police Families Need to Know by Ellen Kirschman. I've already dug into the first couple of chapters and although there is a lot of information that doesn't apply to us right now I'm sure it will be good to read and file away for later.

It was good for us to have this little glimpse before we jump all the way into the police world. After dinner last night Blue and I sat on the couch all cuddled-up, he was perusing one of his many academy binders and I was sitting with my laptop doing what I do. I'm sure that will become our regular view for the next nine months.

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

And what do YOU think about it?

We kept the fact that Blue was trying out for the cops to ourselves for quite awhile, telling only very close friends and some family. Eventually though, when Blue had made it far enough into the process, it became common knowledge to most of the people we associate with.

People would excitedly ask Blue all sorts of questions about the job change.

How long is training?
When do you start?
What do you want to do when you get in?
Are you excited?
Do you get Tasered?

They'd go on and on, eating-up every little bit of information.

Then, more often than not, they'd turn to me and with a 'you poor thing' look in their eye and they'd ask, "And what do YOU think about it?" They were sharing in Blue's excitement and 'sharing' in my depression and anxiety, except that I wasn't depressed or anxious. It was as though they were expecting that I hadn't really given it much thought, or if I had thought it through, that I thought it was the worst idea known to mankind.

I kept on getting this reaction from people time and time again and I wondered why. I mean, I know I'm  blonde and all, but I AM capable of thinking through these major life decisions and discussing them with my husband. It's not like Blue would just up and decided to be a cop without EVER talking to me about it. And do you really think that he would go for something that I'm totally against? I guess maybe they did.

The truth is, Blue and I had spent hours upon hours talking about this change, weighing it all out. Blue had gone and talked to a detective that is currently on the force to ask him some questions about what life is like working as an officer. We both read some books about policing and we went over to Blue's "uncle's" house, who was on the force for 20 years, and chatted with him and his wife about their experience with the job. We got lots of good advice. Blue and I spent a lot of time calculating the possible affect this would have on him, myself and our family as a whole. 

I felt like we were entering into this change as educated and prepared as we could be so it always came as a surprise to me when people would ask that question (like that) and give that look. To be honest, it was always a worrisome look. It made me feel uneasy because I would second guess myself. I thought that maybe I shouldn't be as excited or supportive of this change. Maybe I'd overlooked some crucial piece of information.

Maybe they knew something I didn't...

Monday, January 17, 2011

Lookin' Like a Cop

Just like a kid in a candy store.

Blue came home with his arms piled high with backpacks, duffle bags and boxes all filled with police gear. You should have seen the grin on his face as he opened everything up and tried it on.

The kids and I were at a little coffee shop this morning while Blue was getting outfitted. A cop walked in and The Boy flipped out, straining his neck to get a good view. Waffle kept saying, "Mommy, look, a police officer!!" I told them that's what their daddy would look like when we got home.

Blue walked out in his full-on gear and The Boy got all sheepish. He didn't quite know what to do, excited and a bit apprehensive at the same time.

It's weird to think that in just a little while all of this will be Blue's normal.

Sunday, January 16, 2011


Blue is getting outfitted tomorrow morning. He can't stop smiling.

I think that reality will finally set in when he sees himself standing there, wearing that uniform and looking like a cop.

Two more weeks of carpentry and then it's a whole. different. world.

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Enjoying the Lull

We are heading out to a big cottage with a few other families to enjoy some of the down time we have before Blue starts Academy. We thought it would be nice to spend time together as a family without any distractions right before we tackle this huge change. I can't wait to get out there, relax and take a breather.

It has a hot tub. I'm happy.

Wednesday, January 12, 2011


We had just taken off and were on our way out of Ft. Lauderdale, putting even more distance between us and the island. I took out the fashion magazine I had just purchased before boarding with the hopes of taking my mind off of the only thing I could think about...

Willflure. A little girl the same age as Waffle. She was, by far, the cutest child I had ever held.

The plane was empty.
I started to cry.
The pictures in front of me only made things worse. I was leaving, they were staying. I was going back to my home, my vehicle, my food, my clothes. She was probably just waking up. Her older brother just getting her dressed in dirty clothes on a dirty floor. She was probably hungry, but there would be little or no food that day.

Blue and I traveled down to Haiti last year. It was the first time we'd seen anything like that. You try to prepare yourself for what you're going to see or hear or smell, but there's no amount of preparation for the way your heart just sinks into the bottom of your feet.

We met a little family while we were down there. The dad was gone and the mom had four children to care for. Her house wasn't a house. It was a shack filled with dirt and mildew. She's since had another child...

I gave her a few granola bars and she looked at me like I was a saint. I couldn't take it, I had to look away. She kept reading the french on the packaging, over and over, "Chocolat! Chocolat!"

Today I'm thinking about Haiti and that family...about Willflure.

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

There Will Be Blood

I was doing some work in an office at the church we had been attending. I opened the door and walked through, turning around and grabbing it in order to prevent a slamming sound. This left me facing the door and I realized that I was standing right beside something that hadn't been there before.

My eyes fell on his pale face. I knew his story. I knew what happened.

If I stop, if I slow my mind just enough to clear some space I can think back to when it happened. I can feel the adrenaline, the knot in my stomach, the hairs on my arms stand up. I can relive my panic.

I didn't cry, I didn't yell, I didn't gasp. After all, that was someones loved one (someones young loved one) and I didn't want to be disrespectful.  I did walk calmly to the washroom and stay there for awhile, pacing back and forth, deciding what I should do. I was shaking and breathing hard. Blue was waiting for me. In order to get back to him I needed to walk back beside the open coffin.

I have a 'thing' with bodies. I also have a 'thing' with blood...and broken bones and things that should be  inside the body being outside of the body. They freak me out. I get all squeamish and uncomfortable. It's not that I've had a bad experience, or maybe it's that I've had no experience, but it's something that I just know about myself. We took some pre-natal courses when I was pregnant with The Boy and I couldn't even watch the video's of mom's delivering their babies. Blue was totally fine with it and there I was, the pregnant lady, hiding behind my husband. I know it's so pathetic but I just can't help it.  There are a few professions that I could never in a millions years tackle, policing is one of them. Too much blood, too much gore.

I ended-up leaving the Ladies Room and making my way back to the office. I turned my head and kept my eyes down and then booked it out of the church. I was shaken-up for a long time afterwards.

I admire people who have jobs that deal with these things on a daily basis.