Wednesday, December 21, 2011

the big 3

My oldest son turned three and got his first hair cut and his first big boy bed!!!

Monday, December 12, 2011

christmas tree on our steps

While my family snoozed and dreamed someone dropped off a live Christmas tree on our steps.  The 6 foot pine tree was just laying on our steps early Sunday morning.  We actually have a fake tree because with two kids and a Ukrainian Christmas all the way in January, it is just easier for us.  What a sweet surprise though. We don't know who or when this happened or why.  But to whoever you may be, thank you.  Now I am going to cut the branches and make a beautiful arrangement on our front porch.  In fact I have been looking around for some nice branches to do just that.  Thank you!

Sunday, December 11, 2011

library shelves and crawling

Finally we built a little library for our kids in their room.  Instead of buying the shelves at Ikea I had the wood cut at Home Depot and my husband did the rest.  My toddler loves it.  He is a few days away from turning three and he loves to look at books and sing his ABC's (as well as "bad, bad day" from Despicable Me movie ).  Some of his favourite books are the Berenstain Bear's "The Bike Lesson" and "The Big Road Race" and Dr. Suess' "ABC".  He knew all the alphabet letters before he was two all from reading the "ABC" book.  We didn't really try to teach him, it was just something he naturally was interested in.    

On another note, my 8.5 month old is finally crawling.  He went from lying down on the rug, to sliding around on the floor like a snail and now crawling.  Oh!  How quickly he went from being a little baby to a little boy!  Too quickly for our liking.  In fact I was taking a photo of the book library when my baby started to crawl.  Now he crawls over to the library and pulls the books down.  

Thursday, December 1, 2011

blue, green and tantrums

Lately I haven't been able to get enough of colour, so for the Christmas season our outdoor decorations are all blue and lime green.  This year I wanted to be able to see a wreath on our front porch from the street so I assembled something matching our colours.  I wrapped a simple twig wreath with an old IKEA boxwood garland, added sparkly blue plastic branches from Micheals along with three lime green balls from Wallmart.  I used a wire to hang the wreath at the exact height that I wanted.

On our plum trees my son and I hung blue and green plastic balls.  It was hard for my son to hang the balls with his large mitts, but it was fun watching him work outside and smile at me and give me the thumbs up.  It didn't take long until the toddler temper tantrum appeared but that is to be expected.  Blue, green and tantrums is the theme for our Christmas season.

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

crochet hat and youtube

It is now -20C here and we love to go outside for walks.  Nor rain, nor snow can keep us inside (usually), so I have been making hats for my kids.  I am a beginner for sure so I made a simple crochet beanie with ear flaps with a single crochet stitch.  I am a very visual learner so the YouTube videos on crochet have helped me tremendously.  Woohoo to YouTube!

Here are some of the videos I used to guide me along:

1. How to crochet for a beginner by naztazia.  This is great if you don't even know how to start or what a crochet hook is.
2. How to start a crochet hat by expertvillage. I find them pretty simple and slow enough to follow for a beginner.  In fact I used the rest of the tutorials to help me make the hat.
3. How to make a pom pom by LionBrandYarn.  You could also add a tussle for the top instead of a pom pom.

What is a little difficult is figuring out what size the crown should be, so it took me 3 tries to get to the size that I was happy with.  The first try looked like a wavy mess.  The second time the hat was just too big.  The third try was ok, but at the end my fingers were pretty sore.  I know that size charts must exist but I didn't bother finding one.

To make the ear flaps, I just decreased each crochet row by one stitch.  The ear flaps look pretty sloppy in comparison to the rest of the hat, but that just doesn't bother me at all.  I like the slightly imperfect look.  This way my baby son will know I made it for him.

Sunday, November 20, 2011

Flowers by Odilon Redon

Very rarely I want to put up other people's art on my walls. Usually I like to frame family moments, my kids art or something personal. However I would love to stare at this painting all day long in my living room. It is simply called "Flowers" by Odilon Redon. It is so beautiful and layered, simple and complex. I don't really know why I love it so much. It just makes me feel so comfortable and content. It's just so beautiful to me.

This is only the second time I have felt so allured by art. The first time was when I saw Salvador Dali's "The Persistence of Memory" in an art book. It influenced all my high school art projects. However I could not stare at it all day long as I could at the "Flowers".

Friday, November 18, 2011

soup and snow

Snowfall always makes me want to get the furry blankets out, the slowcooker out and make soup.  My older son is not a fan of food but somehow he eats brocolli and calls them little trees.  This week I made little tree soup with squash.  The squash sweetened the soup quite a bit.  It was super yummy.  I had some pork and beef stock leftover from slowcooked ribs and some frozen blended squash cubes.  Along with some milk and cornstarch we had yummy creamy soup that my almost 3 year old slurped up.  It was a beautiful sight, seeing my son enjoying his soup and watching the big snowflakes fall outside our window.

P.S. Quote from our toddler to daddy this morning:
"Daddy, when you grow up to be a baby, I will change your diaper."

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Best Halloween Ever

Yes, it was the best Halloween ever.  I got to see my little boy, who is now 2 and a half, run around in a cardboard box that H and I cut up and painted to look like a firetruck.  I remember years ago seeing a firetruck, not fireman, costume on Live! with Regis and Kelly.  It just stuck in my mind and all year long our son has been making loud siren noise that actually sound very authentic.  Well, what better costume for a boy like that than a firetruck for Halloween.

In retrospect, it was about a foot too long but seeing him struggle and be determined to get up the steps to trick or treat was so great.  It made us laugh.  It made us get a little teary eyed.  This year is the first time he really participated and knew what was happening.  We didn't quite explain it to him in detail, but he got the gist of it, especially when it came time to eat the candy.  He certainly remembered that I said he could have his treats after we got back.  Seeing him enjoy his candy was fun, even though there had to be some major teeth scrubbing afterwords.  His excitement was so real and we couldn't help ourselves but smile as much as he did.

Our baby boy got to be a monkey and hang onto H the entire time.  His eyes were big and he was happy being out and about in our neighbourhood.  I kept thinking, I can't wait until they both run from door to door together and afterwords laugh their heads off as they compare their loot and trade their goodies.  That's what made our Halloween the best ever.  I have a feeling this is also going to be the best Christmas ever. 

Thursday, October 20, 2011

This is the beginning...

Before I start I am going to say that I am going to write from the heart.  I am going to ramble on and think out loud and not edit my posts.  It is going to be as raw and unsophisticated and chaotic as my life, despite my constant struggle for order and organization.  It is going to be me recording my life in the present.

So here we go.  My life has turned upside down when my kids came into this world.  I felt like I had so much control before they came.  Then I lost sleep and life spiraled into a Monday to Friday existence where I barked orders, did the mandane playground visits, performed meal time tricks to convince my son to eat and counted down to 5 o'clock, that's when my husband came home.  Then one day a little order started to replace the chaos, the kids got a little older, I started to get 3 hours of sleep in a row and I started to forget my crazy life.  I wanted to make sure to record the moments that were so beautiful that it all made having children worthwhile.

Yes, there are moments that make you so happy you can't believe it.  And yes there are many moments that are so difficult you can't believe either.  So this is living in the moment, with my husband, my almost 3 year old son, a seven month old son and a cat.  This is the beginning of the house of m.