Sunday, September 14, 2014

September Firsts

Featuring the lovely Miss M... First day of grade 10.

First school soccer game...  She had evaluations for city soccer yesterday, too - that should start up right after the school season ends. 

And just for fun, a shot from 10 years ago.

Happy Sunday, all.

Wednesday, September 03, 2014

Hot and Cold in the Bedroom

Nope, nothing sexy in this post.  Just a few temperature stories...

Yesterday morning we woke up to a furnace malfunction - it was 29 degrees in the house.  Even Madeline in the basement woke up at 6 am in a sweat.  It's a new furnace and under warranty still, and they came and fixed it pretty quick, but it got up to 30 before we got the breaker turned off to kill the hot air flow.  Batteries weakening in the thermostat?  Causes some havoc.  Have to change up those babies every 6 months like the smoke detectors, I guess.

Nolan gave up his nap this summer, but was sleeping in till 9, so managed fine until bedtime.  This week he woke up at 7:30, then 7... and needed a nap to get through.  I thought maybe it was the temperature, and now that it's cooler in the mornings it was causing him to wake earlier.  But then the hot-house morning he woke early, too, so... not the correlation I thought.  It's evened out the last couple of days - he wakes up at 8 am and falls asleep at 8:30.  Those are some pretty good hours.  Especially that earlier bedtime, since Sean and I are doing P90X3 starting Monday!!

Lastly, in the spring we were looking for a lightweight bed cover to replace our winter duvet, and Sean had the bright idea to just use the duvet cover without the duvet - does anyone else do this?  It's brilliant!  The perfect weight for summer, and you don't have to change up all your colors.  Not that we would anyway...

Have a great perfect-temperature night!

Sunday, August 31, 2014

Cousins, A Wedding, A Move, and Elk

We've packed a lot into these last few weeks of summer.  Nolan and I went to a little 'beach' just outside of town with some friends - a perfect little spot for the little ones.

Remember that time I took Nolan on a bus adventure downtown?  We did that again, but with the whole family.  This is us on the bus... goofy.

There was a wedding in the family last weekend, so we had a full week of visiting with out of town relatives and playing with cousins.  This was the little family shower, getting pedicures.  I'm on the right, and going clockwise, there is Theresa, the bride, Ana, in from Portugal, Colleen, mother of the bride, Laura, cousin from Portugal, Carla, and Madeline. 

Here is a rare shot of all the cousins together.

And on the big day!  Madeline with her Auntie Carla, Uncle Warren and new Aunt Theresa, and Uncle Ian.  The wedding was out at Lumsden Beach, and during the reception Nolan and I got in a good hike in and around the cottages.  I shouldn't have worn heels.

To add to the family fun, the Friesen's came to stay for a night (the wedding eve) on their way back home from holidays.  Always glad to have them here.

I'm working on a big sewing project for a friend - this is often what it looks like when I sit at the machine.

And the biggest thing for us this past week - well, all month, but this week has been 12 hour days every day for Sean - is the big shop move.  As of this morning, the old location is empty and clean and locked and left for the last time.  The new shop is still a big work in progress since the contractors who were supposed to be all done three weeks ago are still not finished.  It's hard to put things in their places when their places aren't finished!  But they will be open for business again on Tuesday, done or not, and hopefully the settling in process isn't too bad.

This afternoon the kids and I took a quick trip out to a local park where they were thrilled to feed the Elk.  We went for the big slide, but this was a treat we weren't expecting.  I like looking at the animals out there, but this time there was a lady with bags of bread, feeding them, and she gave us a bag so we could join in the fun. 

Friday, August 15, 2014

Weekend Meal Idea

Looking for something different to do this weekend?  Why not have an "Appie Meal?"  We do this every now and then and I thought I'd share because it's a fun break from normal healthy food...

An Appie Meal is when you have appetizers for your meal.  Simple.  We did this last weekend and had chicken nuggets, pot stickers, eggrolls, perogies, dry ribs, and fries.  Other times we've had mozza sticks, potato skins, an oriental party pack, and wings.  Oh, and an essential side is a big platter of cut up fresh veggies. You know, to try to add something healthy.  You'll also need fixings - sour cream, plum sauce, ketchup & veggie dip.

The concept is simple, but the kitchen is pretty non stop for half an hour...  Before you start, check all the cooking times and temperatures - you'll have to do some figuring to coordinate the '20 min at 375' with the '28 min at 450.'  This is what my list looked like this time:

450 - Dry Ribs - 10 min
turn down to 400 & add fries & egg rolls - 5 min
add nuggets & start stove top stuff - 5 min
flip egg rolls
10 more min then done

This is Nolan's plate - he tried everything!  You can see the one bite out of each of his things.  And no sauce for this kid. (Except on ribs. He devours ribs.)

If you try it, let me know what your favorite appies are!

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

Thankful x 1000

It's amazing how much you can accomplish when you get up two hours before your kids!  Today is fall program registration, so I got up so I could be on the phone at 7am to get Nolan into his Sea Turtle swimming lessons.  Only 18 minutes on hold and I got our first choice.  Nice.  And yes it's nice that Nolan sleeps till 9; but the trade off is no more naps... So maybe I should get up earlier more often.  Maybe.

So today as I was reading my Bible (without interruption!) and writing in my journals, I reached 1000 things in my 'thankful journal' - only 4 years after I started, way back on a road trip to South Dakota.  I was reading a book that I don't even remember, but it was about happiness I think, and suggested writing down what you were grateful for.  I had a new notebook (I have a weakness for new notebooks), and I liked the idea, so I jotted down a handful of things every now and then as I thought about it.  Then I read Ann Voskamp's blog and book about being thankful, and now I'm working through 40 Days to a Joy Filled Life... so many different ways to convey the same message - being thankful is good for you in every way!

What are you thankful for today?  Do you write them down? 

Friday, July 25, 2014

Fabulous Fifteen

We celebrated this girl all day yesterday.  Happy 15th Birthday, firstborn!!  Mom and Dad came out for a quick visit and we had a nice day together.  There was a last soccer practice that was called half way through for a thunderstorm, but there was enough time for cupcakes with yummy buttercream icing (thanks for the recipe, Mom!), and then a sleep over with a friend that didn't end until suppertime today.

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Summer Came!!

Welcome, Summer.

We spent a week camping at Duck Mountain right after school ended, Madeline was off to Senior Teen camp at Katepwa Lake Camp right after that and then yesterday we took her back to do her first LIT (Leaders in Training) week.  The way she greeted her friends you'd think they'd been apart for ages, not just two days...

Today feels like a little bit of normal; Nolan and I up in decent time, taking it easy, going on a park / geocaching / library adventure this morning (the pool was intended to be the main feature of our outing, but I forgot to check out that sneaking suspicion that this might be when they close for their annual cleaning).  And now, bliss, he is down for a normal-day nap.  We've had more off-normal days than on this summer, and combined with being in different places, messed up (short, late, and non-existant) naps have led to more than a few 11:00 pm nights.  That's just wrong. 

The first three days camping, it rained. Thankfully, our friends (with their trailer big enough for all of us!) were also there, so we spent lots of time over at "Mr. Harder's Campsite" as Nolan called it.  We were thankful for the trailer we were in, too, and that we weren't in a tent!

The most fun we had was on the lake - we rented a canoe for us and Nolan, and a kayak for Madeline.  Good family time, and the kids both loved their new experiences.

Sean had a guy's golf trip booked, but it morphed into a 'two families' trip.  The guys got in two games of golf, us girls had an afternoon at the spa, and it was a good weekend in spite of the long drive to get there.  Elk Ridge (by Waskesiu) is a nice place.

Nolan and E (also 2) checking out the balcony.

The boys: N in red is 5 and M in blue is 4.  Nolan had fun with all of them.

The trip overlapped a day over M coming home from camp, but aunts and uncles are wonderful and she happily spent time with Carla and Larry, taking in the Rider game and her cousin's hockey game.

There's a bit of a catch up for those of you who need to see photos of the kids... :)  Hope you're all having a great summer and getting a chance to get away and relax.

Sunday, June 22, 2014

Three Big Little Adventures

Adventure #1  Goats!! No, they're lambs... Sometimes it's hard for city kids to tell.  We went out to a friend's farm for a visit and the kids loved seeing the lambs, baby kittens, and pigs.

The ones we saw were the bottle-fed crew, and we got to help with their feeding.

Adventure #2  Nolan and I took the bus downtown.  Other than the park and ride shuttles going to the soccer game last month (a coach and a school bus), Nolan has never ridden a bus, so this was a big deal.

Our first stop was at the downtown library.  They have different toys than our usual branch!

We went and sat in the park to have our (healthy) snack, then walked through the Farmer's Market.

And then ate the cookies that we bought there.  That's why the healthy snack on the front end!

A stop for a photo in a fun tree, then off to the playground!

Waiting for the bus home.

Adventure #3  We went to the Farm Progress Show with Dad's Exhibitor's Pass on Friday.  Nolan had fun climbing up on the massive machines, and seeing in person all the machines he reads about in all the books we get out of the library.

It's been a fun June!