Thursday, December 31, 2009

A holiday review

Our holiday time has been full. We stepped away from books, computers and schedules and really took time to relax. Staying up late, sleeping in, PJ's past noon. We also sprinkled in lots of time to ski, skate, toboggan, read, knit, watch hockey and play games.
We started with a winter solstice dinner that was simple and enjoyable. The girls asked lots of questions about the solstice and why we have such short days where we live. It was simple informal learning and quiet enjoyable family time.
As we moved into the holidays we spent lots of time together. This Christmas Eve we were all healthy. Last year we had sick kids.
After the girls were in their Christmas Pj's, we spent time reading and singing together.
On Christmas morning we spent time doing our devotions together and reading the Christmas story before opening presents and having brunch.
Of course we eventually got to the much anticipated gifts and stockings. Papaya wore the Santa hat all morning. She absolutely loves it.
With a few dog lovers in our midst, we made sure that there was a special treat under the tree for Jesse.
A few handmades made it into the Christmas mix. Each girl had knit socks in their stockings. They also had one handmade present under the tree. Here is Boo-boo's doll quilt.
This is Bugsy's new bag. She loves it and thinks the colors are perfect for her. Why are we not surprised at her checking it out like an ostrich? Notice the knit socks?
Papaya got a new bag too. This one only got finished on the 23rd! The original one I started got tossed because it simply was not working and I couldn't save it. So under a time crunch, I finished this in 1-1/2 hours. It came together nicely and she has been using it regularly.
Then we had ooohs!
And aahs!
And sheer delight!
Here's hoping that your holidays have created some special memories, helped you find moments to relax and drawn you closer to Jesus, who came as a babe, for our salvation.

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

picture play

I was bored! Well, not really!
More like in denial.
About 30 inches to the left of my elbow,
I have a mound of paperwork that needs attention.
Really! Who ever wants to do that? Why does it pile up so quick?
So, instead of doing what I should.
I did what felt better!
I played in Photoshop Elements for a little while.
I really have no idea what I am doing there. But it was fun.
Here is a picture of two people I love.
My oldest brother and my mom.
It was taken in this summer on holidays.
So much fun!

Sunday, December 20, 2009

a doll quilt

I had a little bit of leftover fabric and whipped together a little doll quilt for my youngest. This project was really fast and came together well. All my girls still love playing dolls and what better than a little bit of love to wrap them in.
I went completely unconventional and threw on a bright border. The blue is actually in the quilt in a few places. It seemed a little more fun than more orange or yellow.

One more handmade done for Christmas. Speaking of which, since all my kids are asleep, I have one more to finish. It's starting to feel a little last minute!

Friday, December 18, 2009

extremely relieved

I got up early and baked those cookies
Then we had 11 girls decorating about 12 doz cookies
Afterwards there were lots of smiles
Lots of sugar, icing and mess
I spent about an hour de-stickifying my kitchen

Then I had my belt testing
I was so nervous at the start
My throat was dry and I could hardly swallow
My hands were sweaty
At the end we had to sit and wait
While the master and 5 senshi's went out of the room for 20 minutes
I would like to think they were having coffee
But they came back with comments for everyone

I am an orange belt.
I expected, hoped for yellow
But got promoted one belt more than I thought to orange


Thursday, December 17, 2009

belt testing

I have my first belt testing in karate
I am a little nervous
It has been a long time since I have been tested in anything
College days are long gone you know!
Should be interesting. Maybe nerve-wracking.

To take care of the nerves,
I have arranged a cookie decorating party for the girls in the morning
I haven't even baked the cookies yet
The cookie batter is in the fridge
And since I like them much better fresh
I will get up early and bake them first thing

What are you doing?

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

the catch all

This bag will be under the tree this Christmas for our oldest daughter. I hope it will be the bag she grabs as she goes out the door. Maybe to throw in her snack, water bottle and vest for skating. Maybe to throw in her tap and jazz shoes on a Saturday morning.
The bag is quite roomy. The finished dimensions are 13x12x10" (without the straps). At first it doesn't sound big but it should easily hold the things she will need it for.
The polka dot fabric actually has blue dots on it. For some reason they seem really white to me in the pictures.
I found the pattern called "Daisy Dazzler" in the Quilts and More Fall 2009 magazine. You can find a link to the pattern online.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

a christmas wish

Papaya had a very specific Christmas list.

She was worried that we wouldn't have anywhere to put our stockings. The stockings that are hung every year on the railing/banister of our stairs. So she wrote a quick wish and gave it to her Dad.

In the spring we had replaced the carpet in our living room and upstairs. However we never put our banister back up because my husband's busy field season was upon us.
The "wish list" from our daughter was the incentive he needed to get started on the project again. I figure it is better the kids encouraging him, then me nagging. So, with the help of a friend, who is a contractor, from church they hauled out the tools and started to tackle the project.
Here is what it looked like for the last 7 - 8 months.
Here the bottom plate and main post are getting set in.
Then a days work is almost done as they, okay friend, place the last spindles. The work isn't really done. The railing is just primed white and we need to decide exactly how we are going to paint it. Any suggestions?Here is our "Chief Inspector". She had her magnifying glass out and was a helpful little girl to the gentlemen that were working.
And here is the answer to a little girls wish.
The stockings are hung by the stairs with care,
in hopes that St. Nicholas soon will be there.

Thursday, December 10, 2009

another one done....almost

I am trying to tick the things to do off my Christmas list.
This is one of those projects.
And it is almost done.
This is my last pair of Christmas socks to knit.
I will be glad when it is done.
After that only a few more small sewing projects and I should be done.

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

a few little smiles

This afternoon I tried to clear my head a little bit.
So I took my camera and headed outside.
Sometimes with photography things work out just right.

And for reasons I can't even totally explain right now, I LOVE the above picture.
It is straight out of camera. I love the colours, the mood and the expressions.
I took a few others.
This one picture absolutely cracked me up though.
Really, who has a dog that blinks for a picture?
I got the proper shot of them both looking, but this one is so cute.
Should run, my kleenex box is calling!

daughter's observations

"Mom it looks like you want Christmas to come pretty bad!"
"Why's that?"
"Because your nose is red like Rudolph's!"
Haha, I seem to have a comedian in the making.
Good thing they make us laugh.
As for right now,
regardless that I am physically attached to my box of kleenex,
I think I am going to bundle up,
go outside
and get a little sun.
Anything has got to beat being stuck inside feeling yucky.

Monday, December 7, 2009


I am stuffed....
Not with food,
But in the head
This is my second head cold this winter.
I normally don't get sick and I definately don't get it twice.
I've gargled
Taken Vitamin C
Even Cold FX
Washed the hands
All that jazz
But it didn't stop me from catching it from the hubby,
Think I need to head to bed early.
Guess it is better now than Christmas.

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

mini recital

There was a few little girls and a boy
In a little recital
In a little ballet studio
In a little town Bringing smiles
On a cold winter evening!

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

new advent tradition

Here's our newest tradition.
I splurged a little and bought this advent truck.
It has 24 drawers in it.
To count down the days until Christmas.

Our girls were very excited this morning.
With 3 girls and 24 drawers the math works out perfectly.
They will each get 8 turns opening a drawer.

Each drawer will contain a little something.
Maybe a chocolate or eraser.
Maybe a bible verse about the Christmas story.
Maybe a little task of kindness.
I only have 6 days done,
even though they don't know that yet!
The drawers are small too only 4 cm x 4 cm.
Any ideas would be great!
Then this afternoon we put on music
and they spent time painting some Christmas decorations
made out of a baked dough.
Messy but fun! The perfect day!

Monday, November 30, 2009

a wonderful surprise

Today I was meandering around the downtown of our small town.

I was trying to get all the "mail-away" gifts bought so that I can get them in the mail this week. I had been gone for quite awhile. Doing shopping with no kids, really isn't much of a chore. I got to taste mocha fudge and consider bakeshop cookies. Look at books. Stroll.

Once I was done though I was ready to go home and have a coffee. I didn't want to stop by the post office and groaned when I saw the line for the post office counter. So when I checked my mail and found a parcel card, I ALMOST left it there for tomorrow. Then I thought it is almost December and the lines won't get any shorter.

Boy was I glad that I waited. For inside my package was this lovely cowl from Renee. I entered her Pay It Forward blog awhile back and am the very lucky receipent of this handmade cowl.
I did a little shriek and put in on right away! There is no such thing as self control at moments like that! I love it! It goes with my black jacket and will go with my brown jacket too.

Now that I am thinking, I believe Renee had already posted about this and I might just have been drooling back then too.

Anyway I look at it, I am happy!

Thanks so much!

Please forgive "self-potrait" photography! Haven't quite mastered the trick of that yet!

Saturday, November 28, 2009

mortifyingly funny

My child! She never ceases to amaze me. Doing and saying things in places that I rather she wouldn't.

Today we were at the hairdresser. All three girls needed a cut. Long past due since they hadn't had their haircut since the middle of summer.

Boo-boo was done her cut and watching Papaya finish up her cut. Someone said something funny and the hairdresser laughed.

It was a little thready laugh with a slight beat too it

Which Boo-boo immediately echoed by the same "Heh-heh-heh-heh-heh"

Which made the hairdresser laugh again.
Which made Boo-boo echo again.
Which made others in the hairdresser shop burst into laughter, including her mother.

It was so entirely funny. After I regained my composure I tried to explain that I didn't think she was mocking her, just repeating a new sound. But I quickly felt like I might dig a hole big enough to get into so I stopped.

Mercifully, the next time she laughed, Boo refrained!

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

a child's view on grandparents

While I was driving Papaya home from swimming today, she started to make a comment about how her Opa like lots of butter, actually too much, on his toast. We then talked about how he also likes lots of peanut butter with his butter. Papaya commented that she thought that was okay when she was younger, but now that she is older, it's pretty gross. (Just a reminder she isn't quite 8!)

However, all that said, she reminded me that Opa's are good for some things, like rice with brown sugar and cinnamon, as well as cartoons! She has always thought that his lap is pretty comfortable for curling up on. Especially to watch those cartoons.

I asked her, "What about Oma's?"
"Well she is good for peppermints," came her quick reply.

Monday, November 23, 2009


Tonight the girls and I had an interesting conversation at supper. They were lamenting. Struggling a bit. Feeling the pressure to grow up, when they have hardly had the chance to be a kid.

Apparently, a couple of kids have said directly to them, that they think they are too old to play with barbies and dolls. They have also perceived this in general from a few others.

The thing that is crazy is that my two older girls are 7 and 9. Pushing 8 and 10. Yes, they can spend hours dressing, caring and making elaborate games with their dolls and barbies. They still play dress-up and polly pockets. But isn't that what childhood is about?

I think our girls are creative. They read feverishly. They spend hours outdoors and find interest in many things this computer generation passes by. Too be honest, in many things I pass by.

They teach me to slow down.
Enjoy the moment.
Look and listen.

I wonder what happens when a society tells our children "Grow up!"
"Hurry up!"
When children as young as 10, 11 are reading "Twilight" instead of "Pippy Lockingstocking"

It leaves me sad that our society would want to rush them through this preciously short stage of what?

Saturday, November 21, 2009

boo-boo's 5th birthday party

So our little girl is turning five. Her actual birthday is next week but a weekend party was much easier to plan.
She decided that what she really wanted was to decorate cupcakes. At first she said cookies, but with a little hint she thought cupcakes were a fine idea.
She didn't want all her friends to come dressing up as a princess, prince or fairy. She wanted them to come in their regular clothes. So to accomodate the messy decorating, Mommy made everyone an apron they could take home. It was really an inexpensive project. We already had the pink duck fabric and we picked up less than half a metre of the car fabric for the boys.
We spent about half-an-hour decorating cupcakes.
Lots of icing. Lots of candy.
Lots of smiles.
Then my older two girls organized games for the kids. Any one need party planners? I might just have two up for hire.
They played musical chairs.
Pin the tail on the bear. As well as bean bag toss, treasure hunt and they spun the bottle for turns while they gave gifts. What a blessing our older girls were today!
In all, it was a great day for a great girl.
She is our little bundle of energy who grabs life by the tail, plays hard and climbs high.
Just today we found her standing on top of the bar stool trying to get something from the closet. Yesterday, she climbed across the washer to get something from the cupboard up above. Seems hard to keep her feet on the floor most times.
Yet, she's the one who often says, with a hug, "Momma, I love you too much!"
Melt my heart, I love you too my little sunshine!