Tuesday, December 29, 2009

The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly

I feel like it has been awhile since I have given an update (or updated myself) on Brendan's latest developments as a 20-month-old. This year Brendan learned to associate and say "Santa". When asked what Santa says he promptly replies "HoHo!"

(A minor note on the photo above - being a procrastinator, I sent Ryan to wait in line with Brendan at the mall for 2 1/2 hours on Christmas eve day to visit Santa. Which Ryan understandably grumbled about considering he says he didn't visit the mall Santa as a child. In an effort to make Santa affordable to everyone since many autoworkers in Oshawa were hit hard this year, photos at the mall were free and e-mailed to individuals for printing. I must say...you certainly get what you pay for - in this case not much. I'm really resenting the cheesy Oshawa Centre border and the fact that you can CLEARLY see the mall in the background.

Back to developments.. I have been noticing good and not-so-good changes and he seems to be growing both physically and developmentally in leaps and bounds lately.

The Good

- Communication skills are improving - he has just started using two words together although not necessarily in the correct order

- He is absolutely loving baths and requests them now "BAAFF"

- Loves music - any thing from playing the piano at my in-laws to playing with his new xylophone and singing and dancing to Barney and his new little mp3 playing stereo

- Although he is resisting some foods previously enjoyed, his tastes are expanding and his favourite foods right now are any fruit, cherry tomato, cucumber, peppers. Any round fruit or vegetable are all called "buberries" to him!

The Bad

- Protesting regular activities such as diaper changes: "Brendan, can I change your diaper?" "No" this is often followed by extreme fussiness

The Ugly

- Temper tantrums in public places. Today. The library where he wanted to push around the basket that had a handle and wheels and then when it was time to go he screamed at the top of his lungs while I carried him and made my best attempt to check the books out.

- Resisting bedtime with everything he's got. For awhile he tried to play us by asking for the opposite parent when we tried to put him to bed but it didn't take long to figure that one out. Now he tests us by playing with his bottle - not wanting it, wanting it, throwing it, spitting the contents out. A number of nights recently have been ending in him wailing at the top of his lungs for 5-10 minutes before falling asleep. It breaks my heart to hear the little man sad but for the love of god - please go to sleep!

Monday, December 21, 2009

Penniless and Blessed

Today I came across a really great article. Shuns organized sports which I don't necessarily agree with but on the whole is a great article!


Living more sustainably and saving major $$$

As a single income family, we already try to cut back on a lot of unnecessary expenses and excess consumption. This is sometimes difficult, especially at Christmas time.

We had an awesome CSA foodshare this summer that was DELIVERED to our house weekly and included fresh eggs. We got a 1/2 share and had enough veggies and fruit that we were giving some of it away to neighbours and family. It was roughly $18/week for 22 weeks. I have yet to find somewhere close that has reasonable winter shares. Unfortunately here there aren't too many options besides big chain grocery stores for the winter. In Peterborough where we used to live during my university days, the Farmers Market ran all year round. Sigh...

I am happy to say that as of the end of January we will be replacing our 1980 100 AMP forced air electric furnace which is hugely inefficient and in the winter runs us electricity bills of $500+/month. EEP. We have gone high efficiency natural gas. I know.. with electric you can purchase green energy but I still think that by switching to gas we will be HUGELY saving both in our pocket and in our consumption.

This year I have tried to cut back on the number of gifts and the number of new bought gifts. I was able to find some nice things thrifting - including a present for myself..a pair of NEW Aeropostale jeans for $12 at Value Village :) With my last minute shopping it has been hard to economize this way and the number of crafted gifts significantly diminished. Many christmas recipients this year will be receiving cookies!!

Saturday, December 19, 2009

Where did the Fall go?

This is where I've been spending most of my December... yup.. the family tree farm up north. Beautiful, isn't it?

I must admit.. I had planned on blogging atleast once/week. But life has seriously gotten in the way. I've been so busy I haven't had a spare moment to myself except for to check various blogs which I love reading. The Fall had such nice weather and then all of a sudden BAM... crazy cold and snow. The weather even made me put off Christmas shopping. So here I am starting my shopping on December 19th. I found some FABULOUS stuff thrifting today that I am so excited to give in a weeks time. Something about finding or making the perfect unique gifts is so much more rewarding than buying a gift certificate at the mall or giving cash. Not to mention the malls are crazy these days. I'm absolutely loving seeing the wonderful x-mas gifts others have been busy crafting or purchasing and posting about on their blogs.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Just another one of those nights

It has been one of those nights. Clearly since I'm blogging at 3:30am. We just broke a fever finally and my little man is finally sleeping for now. 11pm he woke up quite distraught but once I got him he seemed fine. He was boiling hot to the touch so I checked his temp. - 102F. Do you think I could find any fever medication for him...nope. Ryan suggested I put him back to bed since he was chatty and otherwise seemed fine. He happily took a bottle so had no diminished appetite. He woke up again at 1am at which point the fever was still there and I had to go out to the nearest 24 hours Shoppers Drugmart to get some medication. After I gave him the medication I could not get him to go back to sleep. The sad, sick little boy in his crib was a happy, extremely talkative energetic little boy outside of his bed. Clearly this boy just doesn't want to sleep. Therefore I sat in emotional dilemma...on the one hand I reminded myself that I have a sick child with a proven fever that needs all the love and nurturing I can give him. Yet on the other hand part of me thought that he was totally playing me since he's as happy as ever outside of his bed. It was really an emotional battle. Not for Ryan though. If Brendan is eating, talking and wanting to play - regardless of fever - Ryan is more than happy to go to sleep with his mind at rest while Brendan is fussing in the other room because "he must not be that sick if he wants to play" I think fathers must be wired differently. My emotional motherly side says make the child happy and my rational outsider viewpoint says.... most likely the husband is right.

Whoever said being a mother is easy clearly hasn't had kids.

Friday, November 6, 2009

Maybe I do have a crafty side!

May I present.. MY VERY FIRST COMPLETED BLANKET! (ignore my 70's recliner) I've always loved doing artsy/crafty things. However... most of the things I have attempted have not turned out so nice, I've gotten bored or I've quit after experiencing slight difficulty aka. knitting, crochet, even cross stitch but this... this blanket was foolproof! You'd never know it wasn't quite rectangular or the fringe isn't evenly spaced. This was a project I started in the summer for Ryan's cousin's daughter who is 8 months younger than Brendan. We got one for Brendan last winter from a family friend and absolutely loved it. The one I made has a pink fleece side with hippos on it and a flat purple side. I was complaining to Ryan tonight while I was finishing it off about how I hate measuring and I couldn't get anything even and never to let me start crafty projects again because I always end up not liking them or failing horribly. WELL let me tell you, when I finished doing all the knots I was so proud I decided I will just have to make more. You can get the directions for yourself here. These would make AWESOME christmas gifts as you can choose a million different patterns and colours of fleece.

Now for the Halloween pictures of my little skeleton. We just layered him underneath and put his coat on and left it open. He can be a skeleton every night now because his costume was a pair of $10 glow in the dark pyjamas! His hat was $1 from the Dollarama and his bucket also $1. Can you tell mom doesn't like to spend a lot on costumes and loves to repurpose yet still be unique. Believe it or not I had a ton of people ask me where I got his costume.. and my slightly embarassing response in my head was "they are actually $10 pyjamas because I'm too cheap to spend $40 on a one time use kids costume". Actual response - "from Walmart" 

Thursday, November 5, 2009

New Moon, New Start

Since being sick all week has left me bored and in bed I decided to pick up my half read New Moon book from the Twilight Saga. Brendan has been staying with my sister this week so he doesn't catch the flu. In my eyes avoidance is a far better precaution than vaccinating with a questionable vaccine.

I started reading New Moon months ago only to become uninterested and put it down. It seemed like perfect timing to start reading it again right before the new movie comes out this month. Although I thought the first book was wayyy better than the movie. I think the movie coming out sometime mid-month might just out do this book - or I hope so anyway.

In other exciting news.. I have decided this year we will make the most out of our health benefits. Ryan's plan covers massage and naturopath doctors so I will be going to both! Since having Brendan 18 months ago I haven't quite felt 100%. I don't know if it is from the new stress of being a parent or changed eating habits (I never felt healthier than when I was pregnant and eating very well, taking vitamins, getting appropriate amounts of exercise). Once Brendan was born I felt like I didn't have the time to eat healthy the way I had while pregnant. I would just scarf down anything quickly while he was napping for 20 mins - truth be told I probably lived off grilled cheese for the first 3 months. Now he is starting into that picky kid food stage where he prefers finger foods like grilled cheese or fish sticks which has made it even harder on me to eat well. I don't know if I've mentioned it before but I breast-fed Brendan solid for 8 months. During that time I lost all of my pregnancy weight gain and then some. When I was pregnant I only gained 25 lbs. Brendan was a month early. I haven't been able to gain any weight back. Surprisingly.. because the way I've been eating has been a far cry from healthy and balanced. I have been eating way more meat which I am not happy about and I really do notice a big decline in the way I feel but I have needed the extra iron in quick doses. I'm hoping the naturopathic doctor can help me to get back on track so that when we are expecting baby #2 I am in great shape nutrition and otherwise.

Monday, October 19, 2009

Books, Books and More Books

Recently I have become addicted to a book trading website - BookMooch!. This website allows users to trade books they no longer want for points. These points allow you to "mooch" books from other people. So far I have sent 2 books (one to Italy and one to the US) and it didn't cost me too much. I have already recieved the Time Traveller's Wife which I am so anxious to read and am waiting on another book for a Christmas gift. Whoever came up with this site was a genious! Now I just need to find the time to read them and get them back on my list to give so I can recieve some more good reads!

Brendan got a box full of kids books from his cousins. I have decided I will read every book in the box to him between now and Christmas. There have to be some that he likes. Right now he is far to busy to be interested in reading with me but I'm going to read them to him regardless, even if he just plays while I read. This morning I made and canned homemade applesauce from the apples Brendan and I picked a couple weeks ago. It felt really nice to get back to cooking and baking. We have been eating too much convenience food lately which has left me feeling less than healthy and energetic and my eczema rediculously worse. So my fall resolutions... back to the basics..more me time.. get organized for Christmas

Friday, October 16, 2009

Getting Back in the Groove

I realize that I haven't posted on here in oh so long. We've been so incredibly busy since the wedding but I'm BACK!

Re-cap of September:

- My first month back home not working. Yay!

- Our first month trying for baby #2..unsuccessfully but fun anyway :)

- The long weekend we went 5 hours north to the family cottage. Brendan wore his life-jacket that we got him from a yard sale for $2 this summer the whole weekend and loved it!

- Brendan's first haircut (see below!) we went to a kids chain called Melonheads - what a great first time experience! He sat in an airplane shaped bucket seat and played with toys and bubbles, there was a tv on the wall playing cartoons, the hair dresser cut away at his hair while he played, at the end he got a free ride on their resident rocking horse and a certificate with his picture and first lock of hair.

Yeah.... my kid wouldn't wear the cape!

- I joined a local mom and baby group on Facebook and did a mall outing and met lots of other moms and babies. Mostly boys and mostly younger than Brendan. This made me realize that there really aren't too many stay at home moms out there. After talking to many of the ladies I came to the conclusion most really don't want to go back to work, some dreading it but really don't feel that they have any option otherwise. I feel incredibly priviledged to be able to stay home with Brendan and that it is a choice. For whatever reason, I still always feel the need to mention to other women who inquire about my decision to stay home that I do have a university degree..unfortunately they are always surprised to hear this. I hope that in the next few years there will be a shift in thinking and that the stigma now associated with women who stay home to care for their children as being less educated or lazy might be put to rest. Dr. Phil the other day had a show on Stay at Home Moms vs. Working Moms and concluded that working moms have better socialized and rounded children?! I do understand the benefits of daycares for social interaction but what about the stay at home mothers who go out and do activities with their children and teach them manners and other important socialization skills one on one? Apparently in Dr.Phil's books that counts for nothing. sigh.

Saturday, August 29, 2009

Friday, August 14, 2009

T-Minus 1 day!

Sooo my big wedding is tomorrow. Lately I've been going a little crazy with the planning and find myself wishing that the wedding was just over - as awful as that sounds. All of the plans I had in the beginning...most of them I put into action but many of the final details have just been decided by me going with whatever was easiest. A decision I do not think I will regret. Man this wedding planning is hard work! Exciting news on the food front. I have been harvesting a lot from my garden these days. 1 summer squash (another on the way), a handful of grape tomatoes, spring greens, radish, calendula, and herbs. YUM. My CSA food share has been more than filling in the rest of our fruit and veggies and Ryan's meat from last fall's hunt is just about finished.

Ryan picked up our tree favours earlier this week and they turned out far better than I had expected. We ended up paying a little extra but the farm wrapped each tree very nicely in a burlap sack and tied a dark purple ribbon around the top. Just have to finish printing out our instructions for the trees. I am hoping to get a final budget for our wedding posted after the wedding a la 2000 dollar wedding blog style.

Tonight we are hosting our rehearsal dinner at our house. On the menu:
BBQ Chicken
Baked Potato
Corn on the Cob
Homegrown tossed salad
Caesar Salad
Key Lime and Lemon Meringue Pie
Strawberries from our foodshare

I'm really looking forward to relaxing on that beach now...

Thursday, July 23, 2009

And He's Up and Walking!

Finally... Brendan has been making fairly successful attempts at walking for the past week. He is almost 16 months old now. Ryan walked around 16 months and I walked around 13 months so he's bang on given his genes! His walking is resembling more of a run. He has learned if he goes slowly he is more likely to fall before reaching his goal. We keep on encouraging him. :). He has also made some attempts to use a spoon to eat his food.

The last two nights we have made some pretty healthy meals that Brendan has happily eaten. The first night I made some sticky rice (we found that this is the best rice for him to eat with his hands as it clumps when he grabs it) with black beans, peppers, and onion. I am going to add tofu to it next time, I think. He ate it up. Last night I made my own version of the maceroni and cheese from Deceptively Delicious by using brown rice pasta, 1/4 cup of pumpkin puree (very healthy!) instead of squash or cauliflower puree and adding the left over black beans from the night before. Brendan, Ryan and I all enjoyed it. The best part was it only took 15 minutes to make, including prep time and cleaning up after myself as I went. I like many of the recipes in this book and am always looking for ways to add nutritional content to foods that Brendan enjoys. I am delighted to report that he absolutely loves veggie pizza!

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Sewing Project for the Wedding

I am thinking about making my own napkins or table cloths for the wedding...but I do not have a sewing machine. I actually know very little about sewing machines and want to buy a fairly basic machine that will be good for small projects. I know that some good quality ones can be upward of $600. Clearly I don't have this kind of money...

Anyone have any suggestions on where to get one at a fairly good price? Brand name suggestions would also be greatly appreciated!!!

Monday, July 13, 2009

Honeymooning in Bruce

In the midst of wedding planning we have also managed to plan a wonderful 4-night 5 day honeymoon in the Bruce Peninsula. When I was younger my parents used to rent a cottage in Sauble Beach on Lake Huron nearly every summer. I loved going there. I haven't been in quite a few years though and Ryan has never been. His one criteria for a honeymoon was a beach... mine was staying local and saving money while having a romantic experience. As you can see above. Sauble Beach has one of the top ten sunsets in the world!...truly amazing. I don't even feel bad in the slightest that we will not be going to some far off grand destination for our honeymoon. Ontario can be quite beautiful and it is all about spending time alone with eachother. Best of all... we're supporting Ontario tourism in this economic recession. I love it!

We are staying at bed and breakfasts for the 4 nights. The first two will be spent the closest to Sauble Beach so we can unwind from the wedding and sit on the beach. This B&B is the most private but also has a nice area outside for a nightly fire where guests can mingle (see below!) The other two B&B's will be further up the peninsula and are eco-friendly! The first one is an Edwardian style home (Same as ours - only much much larger) and we'll have a whirlpool tub and our own private balcony. The last B&B we'll stay at is a farm house that serves local and organic food :) For our meals, breakfast will be covered, we'll have a light lunch - maybe some picnics on the beach or wherever we are and then splurge for some fancy dinners. We usually do this sort of thing on all our vacations.. breakfast in the hotel..pack a lunch and have a very nice dinner. It will definitely be nice just the two of us.

So far our list of activities includes:

- Sunbathing on Sauble Beach
- Golfing
- Hiking the Bruce Trail (we plan on seeing the grotto). Likely we'll do outdoor activities every morning. We usually do when we vacation.

- Touring various historical light houses

- Taking a boat out to see the shipwrecks off Tobermory

- Visiting the Southampton Market

- Going to a drive-in movie (something we always used to do before Brendan)

- Buying some local artwork - a tradition my parents used to do on their anniversaries from Niagara-on-the-Lake or various places they travelled. This is something I'd really love to do with Ryan.

- Finding a live band to enjoy


Sunday, July 5, 2009

Big Wedding Update

The wedding is in a little over a month and I haven't posted any updates lately.

Firstly, we have been getting many compliments on our homemade invites. Ryan and I spent two whole days crafting them and then several weeks gathering up the addresses, writing personal messages for some and addressing the envelopes. We ended up paying probably the same as a basic wedding invitation made. I can definitely see why most brides leave this to stationers. Never the less... we were quite happy with them too.

Ryan wrapped the ribbon on them so that they looked like little gifts.

Other exciting news.. we got a trial version of our cake in time for Canada Day. For those of you that remember, I was planning on making my own cake but those plans went out the window when I got a job. A collegue of my mom's who just happened to take the same decorating courses as I did is planning on starting up a business on the side and is going to give us a great deal on the cake. Here is the mini version! (chocolate inside - Ryan's request - and thinly rolled fondant on the outside because some people don't like the taste/texture of it but I like the look)

We have picked out the music for the ceremony and I'm quite happy with it. The procession will be the same song that my parents used at their wedding which is meaningful. Also, we asked my grandfather to do one of the readings which he happily agreed to do and then mentioned that he had been hoping to maybe sing a solo at one of his grandchildren's weddings and we happily agreed to having him do so :)

On the attire front, I bought a pair of shoes! My mother wasn't too thrilled they do not have a high heel but really I just wanted something where my feet wouldn't kill me by the end of the night AND most importantly something I could wear again. I have been dying to wear them to several outings this summer but refrained from doing so because it just wouldn't be right. This is a good sign that I will indeed wear them again.

And now, off to sort out Ryan and Brendan's outfits for the big day!

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Happy Canada Day!

Oh Canada!!!

From this half of the year on, I plan on blogging way more. I have been so busy with work I have little time for much else. This is part of the reason why I posted this beautiful picture of dawn in the country taken just 20 mins north of Oshawa at 6am one morning while I was driving Ryan to work at a site nearby. I have decided that unless I get the super awesome contract job I have just applied for, isn't worth it to work full-time, away from Brendan and with little time to garden, bake, blog etc. which I really enjoy. 

Latest developments with Brendan:

- Running around behind a walker is his favourite activity. Close seconds are swimming in his kiddie pool, playing in his sandbox (a birthday gift from Ryan's sister) and climbing stairs or anything else he can climb

- His vocabulary consists of - Mama, Dada, Baba (bottle), Car, and Nana (for Banana). He has been trying to repeat many words we say to him.
- He has become the biggest fan of his daddy and sometimes wants nothing to do with his mama!. See evidence below!

Tuesday, June 2, 2009


I cannot lie.. I am missing being a stay at home mom a lot. As I mentioned in my last post, I gave up cake decorating twice a week to spend time with Brendan since we only get 2 hours/day to see eachother. On the other hand...I also enjoy working and spending my days with adults having adult conversations. The two jobs I interviewed for which both sounded really promising didn't come through. For both I was the second place candidate. I guess it wasn't meant to be. I've been reading through many many job boards and sending out resumes with not a lot of luck. My contract at my current job is up at the end of this month so hopefully something good will come along before then. But I really don't know...

The wedding is fast approaching. We got our quote for the alcohol from my brother (he owns a bartending company) which isn't nearly as expensive as we had budgeted for AND Ryan's parents have offered to pay for the alcohol which is pretty nice of them. So far we are on budget. I am hoping to get a nearly complete budget posted soon. I'm getting a little stressed out from all the planning and I think I will be really happy once the wedding is over and I can relax.

For now I leave you with some photos of what we've been up to lately:

Sunday, May 17, 2009

Working Gal

I feel as though I have been absent for a little while in the blogging world. This week was my first week in a summer job with an organization I've worked for in the past and was it ever exhausting! Unfortunately, my new position involves an hour commute to work. Luckily I am against traffic both ways which is nice and it is somewhat relaxing to have that time to myself to gather my thoughts and clear my head. Although I do not love my job in this department as I did the previous department I worked in the summer before Brendan was born, I am happy to be back in the same organization, greatful for the experience in my field and have been applying for some year-long contract positions within the building. Last week I had two interviews (my boss has been more than accomodating giving me time off work in the first week to interview for other positions). Both interviews went well and sound fairly promising but competition is fierce and in this economy I really consider myself lucky to have even secured a summer position. So many of the people I know are without work right now or as young professionals entering into the workforce do not have much experience in their field and therefore cannot find any employment in the field in which they had hoped to work.

As far as smooth transitioning, this week did not go as I had hoped. I found when I got home from work I was so exhausted that on the two nights where I usually have cake decorating, I couldn't get organized enough to make it to the class and all I really wanted to do was spend the 2 hours I could with Brendan after not seeing him all day. Note daily schedule below...

6am - Wake-up --> frantically get dressed, wash face, put make-up on, make the bed
6:30am - Brendan wakes up/gets dressed/eats breakfast
6:50am - Load up the car and drop Brendan off with my sister
7:05am - Leave for work/eat breakfast on the road
8:30am - Start work
4:45pm - Leave work
6pm - Arrive home exhausted
8pm - Brendan's bedtime
9pm - Ryan's bedtime (I usually spend that hour with him)
9-10pm- Get everyone ready and packed for the next day/shower/clean up

On Wednesday, our daycare provider gave us 2 weeks notice, saying that Brendan wasn't happy there because he couldn't interact very well with the other kids as he isn't walking or talking a lot and the other kids range from 2-5. Consequently he was proving to be a lot of work for her and she would prefer to watch only older kids.. so that SUCKED. But obviously I want the best for my son and for him to be in an environment where he is happy. Luckily my sister is not working and she said she would watch him for as long as we needed and Brendan is quite happy there. I think this will work out better for us anyway.

To top it all off.. I was sick as a dog from Mon-Thurs and now Ryan has gotten sick. We're spending our long weekend recovering. We also had a nice visit with my brother and his girlfriend last night.

Hopefully next week will be better.. much better if I get good news from one of the positions I am hoping to get!

Thursday, May 7, 2009

Brendan's Birthday Festivities

So I didn't make the cake after all!
We have been fighting off some sickness.. high fevers and coughs = not too much fun 'round these parts lately.

Last Sunday we celebrated the little man's birthday by hosting a BBQ for close friends and family. The little guy loved his gifts. Brendan enjoyed a homemade Turkey burger and a slice of store bought, sugar-loaded vanilla cake. I was really planning on making him a carrot cake for his birthday but Ryan and I were at a marriage preparation class all weekend (a requirement from the church in order to be married) and so my sister convinced me to let her buy him a cake from the store. The marriage prep course was not religious in the slightest and both Ryan and I walked away from it feeling that it was incredibly worthwhile and helped us to talk about things that we hadn't yet talked about after 4 years of being together, living together, and looking after a baby and toy yorkie (that needs almost as much attention as the baby). I think that it has strengthened our relationship and opened our eyes to areas of improvement and healthy conflict management. Also noteworthy...Ryan has done a significantly larger share of the household tasks since attending this course!!

I am knee-deep in job search/interviews/small contract work offerings. I should have more to say on this after next week.

On the plant front, I need to plant some more tomato seedlings. I don't know what happened but I am left with one little tomato plant. Lately my plants have been basking in the nice weather and sun on our front porch. I even leave some of the larger ones outside overnight now.

Thursday, April 30, 2009

Happy 1st Birthday to My Little Man





Today is Brendan's 1st birthday. I cannot believe a year ago he was just hours old. We are having a little BBQ with close friends and some family this Sunday to celebrate. I cannot wait to see him dig into the cake I will bake for him.

I thought I had at least a couple years before the "birthday excitement" starts but unfortunately... the birthday boy decided to wake up for good at 5:30am..joy. I am really happy though that I get to spend the day with him..just the two of us. We are going to go to public swim later on this morning and then hopefully to the park this afternoon.

At 1 year, some of his most recent developments are:

- Sleeping 12 hours through the night!!!!!!!!! (About 2 weeks ago he started sleeping from 8pm to 8am. I honestly never thought I would see the days of getting 8 hour sleeps again. A downside to this is how much harder it is for me to get out of bed now)

- Trying to push objects that he can stand at

- Waving at himself in the mirror and when people (live or on tv) wave at him

- Finally understanding the word no.. but also how to manipulate us by giving the quivering lip

- Saying uh oh - though he doesn't use it right

I'm sure there are more that I am forgetting... but I thought I'd post some of his very first pictures of my then 5 pound boy

Saturday, April 18, 2009

Wedding Update

So.. The wedding is less than 4 months away now. I hadn't really been keeping track but yeah! Someone better light a fire under my ass now. So much to do still!

This past week I feel that I got a whole lot done.

- Finished off the guest list (106 people!)

- Narrowed down my colours: Peach, Green, Gold and Purple

- Got my flowers all sorted out with our local flower lady who operates out of her basement. She did the flowers for a friend of mine's wedding. We are doing the reception flowers on our own. For all the bouquets etc. for the wedding party the cost came to $350 including delivery...I plan on doing up a budget in the near future to highlight all the amazing deals I have been getting.

- Arranged to meet with the organist who has offered to provide her services free of charge! I've known her for quite some time from the church my parents went to since I was born!

- Got fabric swatches for the bridesmaids dresses. We are having my mom's seamstress make the dresses at a very reasonable price. I have decided to let the girls choose their own styles and they will all be in the same green stretch satin material. Gold shoes!

- We have been having some trouble deciding on a honeymoon destination. We are only planning on going for a 4-day weekend, likely in September, because we feel a week would be too long to leave Brendan and hard for Ryan to get off work. Ryan wants to go to a beach and drink but I really don't want to do something like that and it is hard to find an all-inclusive for only 4 days. Places like Mexico and the Dominican have also made me apprehensive these days with all the recent misfortunes of Canadian couple travellers. I would love to go to NYC or somewhere in New England. I have thought about Quebec City too. I'd love to hear any ideas anyone might have of somewhere budget friendly, close by and where I won't go crazy with nothing to do. I know the point of a honeymoon is to spend time alone as newlyweds but honestly, I think I would go crazy secluded with just booze, a beach, and a hotel room.

Monday, April 13, 2009

Happy Easter!

There were plenty of new developments this Easter. Brendan sprouted a second tooth and the first one is growing like mad. He climbed his first stair at my mom's house and he started blowing bubbles into the water during his bath today.He was spoiled with gifts from family. Mommy and daddy got him some new bibs. Bigger ones. He wont eat from a spoon often anymore so we needed the bibs with the food catcher. We tend to get him practical gifts for every occasion because we figure he isn't old enough yet to really get it and he enjoys the wrapping way more than any gift we give him. I guess this will probably change next year! Also, a couple weeks ago, Ryan's sister sent us a carload of toys her kids no longer play with and therefore our original Easter present idea of new toys - he seems bored with the old stuff - went out the window. Brendan wouldn't go down for a nap at all at our Sunday Easter Lunch with my family so inevitably this happened....I know I know...Valentine's bib!

On Saturday we went up to Muskoka to Ryan's parents place to celebrate with his family. The weather was gorgeous and we enjoyed a bonfire outside in the afternoon and a lovely dinner. Ryan's sister brought bubbles up. Brendan really liked them and we enjoyed dying eggs with Ryan's nieces. We had some sleep issues here too.. both in the morning and afternoon Ryan or I had to take him out for a car ride to get him to go down for his nap. Guess it was all the commotion.

All in all...Easter was a hit with this little boy!

Thursday, April 9, 2009

Living the Domestic Life

After nearly a whole year of living the "domestic" life being a SAHM, I realized that there are things I love about this lifestyle and also things that I am less fond of...

  • Being out and about during weekdays. There is something so satisfying - I don't know what - about being able to go shopping, walking or really anything during typical "work hours". This just gives me an added sense of freedom

  • Getting to spend all day with Brendan watching him learning and growing into a little man.

  • Taking pride in my home - in its cleanliness, in my abilities to make a comfortable and safe home for my family.

  • Taking evening courses. These help me keep my sanity and give me a much needed break from the homestead while learning new things at the same time.

  • The odd day when Brendan sleeps in and I wake up at 9am to the sun shining through the window and Brendan happily making noises from his bedroom to let me know he is awake. Being able to lay in bed and enjoy the morning sun is a rare pleasure that many working people do not get except for maybe on the weekends MAYBE

  • Having time to cook, read, craft, and garden

Work (I call this work because these are things I enjoy less and yet I have to do. Although I realize that many people love the thing they call "work". I just didn't think it would be appropriate to call them something more negative)
  • Sometimes lacking the recognition for all that I do because they are so-called every day chores.

  • Taking on nearly all of the household duties which are often cumbersome and neverending because it just makes sense for me to do these things because I am at home.

  • Spending every waking hour with Brendan. I listed this as a joy or benefit but it is a double sided coin. As much as I love him, I also love the time away from him and sometimes find myself overwhelmed on days where he doesn't sleep much or is cranky due to teething or lack of sleep.

  • $$$. Unfortunately this position doesn't offer a nice salary or benefits or an end to the work day. Prior to Brendan I was for the most part financially independent and had a little extra to spend on whatever I wanted. These days money is a little tighter and as most moms do..I find that any extra money in the budget is spent on Brendan. It will be nice when I get back to making some money.
Some of my cakes below: The first one was my very first cake for cake decorating using the star tip. This is the kind that is used to make most character cakes (Disney, etc.) I made a simple rainbow and wrote Ryan on it. The cake was vanilla and had vanilla icing filling. I gave the cake to Ryan to eat for work.

The second cake, obviously more aestetically appealing, I made for my best friend's (and maid of honour) birthday yesterday. The cake was chocolate with a vanilla pudding filling. I used the left over icing from the rainbow cake (darkening some colours slightly) to make this nice "spring looking" cake. I really practiced my flowers and even did a flower border around the base of the cake.