Saturday, December 31, 2011

New Year's Resolutions/ Goals

News Year's Resolutions/ Goals

I just got back from a new year's party and tucked my girls into bed. It is 9pm and I will definitely be sound asleep before the new year arrives. I am still wearing my garish 80's get-up, nasty hair spray and blue eyeshadow and I can hardly wait to have a hot shower and curl up with my journal. I can't help but become introspective on New Years Eve. I like to curl up and reflect on all the things that taken place over the past year, the highs as well as the lows, and plan for the new year. That being said, this is my list of goals for 2012......

1. Project 365. Last year I tried this and failed miserably. It was partially due to the fact that my camera died the third week in January and I didn't get a new one until the end of March. A week later I gave birth to my second child and completely fell off the wagon all together.

2. Loose 20 pounds by weighing my food and eating a specific amount of calories a day. Once I have achieved that I will start using weighs to build and define my muscles. I KNOW that it is possible I just have to be consistent and focus on what I want in the future rather than what I want in the moment.

3. Have a weekly meal plan so that I know what I am making each day and what I need to buy at the grocery store. I really don't like trying to figure out what to make for dinner at 4pm.

4. LIVE ON AN ACTUAL BUDGET. I have never yet succeeded at this time, but if we are going to buy a home and survive in one income we are going to have to learn how to.

5. Do whatever is necessary to get Claire to sleep through the night. My sleep deprived body has had enough.

The end. Goodnight and Happy New Years!!!!!!!!!!

Saturday, December 24, 2011

On the cusp of Christmas

Here I sit in my new flannel pyjamas, reminiscing about Christmas Eve as a child. For as long as I can remember, my parents would load us into a sled and pull us to United Church where we would attend a Christmas Eve service. It wasn't anything special, but I always loved singing the Christmas carols and eating the tasty snacks afterwards. The church was old and drafty and you could see the rafters through the unfinished ceiling. The basement where we had refreshments smelt like mold and old clothing, but we loved it nonetheless. When we had gotten home and had climbed out of our scratchy stockings, we got to open one present (which was always pajamas). I always like to take a long hot bath before I climbed into then. While my parents prepared the hot oil fondue, us children would lay underneath the Christmas tree and listen to Amy Grants Christmas album. We always concluded Christmas Eve with a much anticipated chocolate fondue. Hmmm it makes me all warm and fuzzy just thinking about it.

Our Christmas Eve was quite simple this year, for number of reasons, but it was still thoroughly enjoyable. We didn't have a fancy fondue since didn't have enough time to shop for the ingredients on our way home from the Lower mainland, but we did have garlic sausage, cheese, triscits (thanks to Earl and Charlotte), pickles and veggies. After dinner, Amelia had her bath. I gave her some shaving cream mixed with food coloring to keep her busy while I tidied up the house.

We all opened a present each, put on our new jammies and then took a family picture. We lit candles, sang a few Christmas carols and then read the girls the storey about Jesus's birth from a children's Bible. Once they were sound asleep I made myself some peppermint tea, ate almond roca and worked on my December daily album some more. I am a little behind, and I have run out of 4X6 photo paper, so it will remain undone until my next trip into town, (hopefully on boxing day since I love to stock up on clearance Christmas decor), but I promise I will share it with you on my blog soon. This is a picture of Amelia and I scrap booking during one of Claire's naps.

Anyways, it is time for me to go to bed. A very merry Christmas to you!!!!

Monday, December 12, 2011

December Daily Week 1

I've been itching to post my December daily layouts for about 12 days now and today I finally sat down and tackled it. Here is what I so far....

Hope you are having a delightful Christmas season!!!!

Opps I realized I haven't finished all my journaling.. hence the unfinished sentences.....

Saturday, November 26, 2011

Money, debt and possesions....

"Keeping up with the Joneses" used to be a catchphrase I never identified with. That changed the year we moved to our first posting with the RCMP. While I was delighted to discover that that the majority of families were the same age as us, I was baffled at how well off they appeared. As I glanced around their homes I couldn't help but notice their fancy leather couches, huge flat screen TVs, their matching bedroom sets, and beautiful dining sets. All I could think about was the fact that I bought my 70's couches from Value Village for eighty dollars, that our kitchen table was a hand me down from Nathaniel's mother, that our vehicle was basically an antique and that I didn't even own serving dishes. I know that it may sound a little silly, but I got stressed at the very thought of having "those" people over, least they see my humble furnishings. I had never experienced such feelings before, never compared myself to others or assumed that I should have what others have. Why did that change? It is a question that I have been wrestling with for some time and have not yet resolved. In any case I often feel the need to explain myself - you know - the reasons why we don't have numerous flat screen TVs (or even one for that matter), two brand new vehicles, a hundred million toys for my children, expensive couches and so on.

Firstly, I don't think that all that stuff is necessary. Secondly I think there is tremendous value in living within ones means. I've realized that the majority of people who have all those nice new things don't actually own them - the bank does. I don't want unnecessary debt. I would rather accumulate things over a long period of time as my taste changes and as my bank account permits. Thirdly, we live in a culture of excess, and we are constantly made to feel as though we need "stuff" to feel happy and fulfilled. I admit, I buy into this lie frequently, but I am trying REALLY hard not to. That being said, I do WANT nice things. I have gigantic lists of all the things I want to buy. But, I shouldn't let that list consume me or take away from other priorities. Priorities such as tithing, giving, saving and being accountable.

For the first time in over eight years of marriage I have been able to start buying things for my home and wardrobe, and as a result I have become more selfish. It is true that the more you have the more you want. In our early years of marriage Nathaniel and I lived at my parents house to help them out with the mortgage and keep an eye on my two younger siblings (who were still in high school at the time) while my parents lived and worked at a retirement facility in Surrey. We stayed there for two years, and it was such a blessing since Nathaniel had just started a job working as a grader at a sawmill and I was attending University. Our rent was really inexpensive and after two years we had saved up enough to put a down payment for our first home. At that point we were dinks (double income, no kids) but we had a hefty mortgage and we were saving our remaining pennies for our trip around the world. We sold our home (when the housing market was at its peak) and invested our profit with the help of a financial advisor. It was a intelligent decision and the stood a good chance of earning more for us than it would simply sitting in a savings account. After we had sold our home, Nathaniel proposed that we tithe from our profit. I was not as enthusiastic about the idea as he was, but I knew it was the right thing to do. So needless to say we took an uncomfortable sum of money and put it into an account and labeled it the "God account". In the years since, the Lord has lead us to give money from that account to various ministries and people. I know that it would have been more fun to go on a shopping spree with that money, but instead we surrendered it to the Lord and have seen it used in powerful, life changing ways. Since then, Nathaniel put me in charge of paying tithes each month since it is something that I struggle with more than he does.

When we returned to Canada after nine glorious months of gallivanting, Nathaniel applied to the RCMP and returned to his job at the sawmill. I started working at a safe house for women and children leaving domestic abuse. Nathaniel and I started trying for a child shortly after that. My family were happy to have us stay with them again and I was thankful for their support when Nathaniel had to go to Regina for depo for six months. Our daughter was only four months at the time, but thankfully I had gotten enough hours to quality for maternity leave. In addition to that, I had saved the majority of my paychecks in case I needed extra money while Nathaniel was away. I never ended up needing to use any of it and we were able to reinvest it after Nathaniel graduated. I think that was the last time we put anything into savings. So that brings us to our current situation. We have ridiculous low rent and cheap living expenses but we haven't saved a dime and we have been spending like crazy. It's rather embarrassing.

It is really important to us that we make good financial decisions. We want to be a good stewards with the finances the Lord has blessed us with but over the past year I don't feel as though we have been . In fact I feel like I am struggling with money again. I have been really inconsistent with my tithing as well as giving. I have a long list of reasons why I haven't been tithing as much but really they are just excuses to cover my selfishness. In 2 Corinthians 9:7 it says "So let each one give as he purposes in his heart, not grudgingly or of necessity; for God loves a cheerful giver." Dah! In Mathew 6:19 it says "Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy, and where thieves break in and steal, But store up for yourself treasures in heaven..." I need to keep the eternal in perspective instead of constantly dwelling on my fleeting existence and the material comforts I think I need. Christmas is coming up and my greedy little mind has been composing lists of things I would like, but instead I should be thinking of how I can bless others. Isn't that was Christmas is all about? Celebrating the great gift that God gave us when he sent his son to earth for us and the reminder that it IS better to give than it is to receive.

Sunday, November 20, 2011

Christmas cards

It is usually about this time of year that I start thinking about our annual Christmas letter. Today I started playing around with photo shop and this is what I came up with so far......

I would love to have a picture of our family in the snow, but it is ridiculously cold here right now (easily -25 most days). We have been keeping the wood stove stocked around the clock and I pulled out our winter duvet yesterday. Our home is decked with pine boughs, lights, garlands and wreaths. I can hardly wait to set our tree up.

Friday, November 18, 2011

Do you ever wonder...

Do you ever have days where you question whether or not you are giving your child the best possible childhood? Whether or not you are spending enough time with them - teaching, instructing, playing, and disciplining. I do. On a regular basis. I spend a great deal of time feeling guilty actually. At the end of the day I ask myself - what did I do to enrich my daughters lives today? Most days I don't feel as though I have done anything particularly fun or interesting. I am no longer in survival mode, but I always find cleaning my home more appealing than playing with my children. I am embarrassed to admit that, but it is true. I truly want my children's days to be full of good things... imaginative play, nutritious snacks, laughter, adventures outside, and creative endeavours but I don't always have the energy or the time to make it happen.... or do I? It is said that you make time for the things that really matter to you. So what are my priorities? What REALLY matters to me? This is the question I find myself asking. Whether or not there are dishes in the sink, should not be of any consequence! There will ALWAYS be more dishes, but the time I have with my children is fleeting.

Instead of worrying about the mess and the noise I need to focus on enjoying my children. Lately I have started to try and focus on doing things that I genuinely enjoy so that my time with them is not half hearted. For me, that means making forts, baking cookies, building Lego towers, chasing them around the house giggling, playing tickle games on the carpet, racing cars down the hallway, going for walks in the woods, singing songs, and painting. I have to remember that soon this precious time will be over and my children will more concerned about spending time with their friends than with their momma. Right now I am their world - their sun and their moon and I need to cherish that fact.

I remember once hearing a mother say that at the end of the day she couldn't remember if she had even taken the time the look her children in the eye and tell them that she loved them. So often I find myself in autopilot just trying to get things done, make sure the children are fed, clean, rested and that dinner is on the table. It is often not until the children are bathed, dressed and in there beds that I have a moment to reflect on the day. So, recently Amelia and I have started thanking Jesus for all the good things that took place. She quints her eyes tight and smiles big and then bellows a huge Amen. Then I tell her I love her and give her a big smooch. It is the perfect way to end the day.

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

A delightful stranger

I picked up a hitchhiker yesterday afternoon after driving by him and his dog numerous times. I saw him for the first time when I went to a friend's house for a play date around ten in the morning and then again when I went to an epicure party at a ranch down the road. I thought for sure someone would have picked him up by the time I headed home, but no, he was still sitting on the side of the road looking as miserable as ever. A quick calculation reminded me that he had been out in the cold (-8 degrees) for at least five hours. His dog was shivering beside him in a blanket and I couldn't help but feel empathy for two of them. Nathaniel had taken Amelia to a church potluck twenty minutes outside of town and I didn't know when he would be home, but I really felt the Lord prompting me to help this guy out. I was nervous when I did a U turn and headed back in his direction, but I had a peace in my heart that the Lord was in it. I asked him where he was going and he said he was trying to get to Kamloops. I found out that he had spent the past twenty six hours outside and had slept in the shack across from the general store. I was appalled. There are no hotels in our community and there is only one restaurant which is not open on weekends. When I realized that he would be spending the night outside again if I didn't invite him to come and spend the night at our house. The sudden relief in his eyes was instantaneous. I couldn't help but think "OH my goodness, I can only imagine what the other officers and their wives would think if they saw me letting a scraggly, bearded man and his pit bull into my car". But, I did it anyway.

After he had thawed out and had a hot shower he didn't waste any time tuning our neglected guitars and filling our home with the most delightful guitar music. It reminded me immensely out the sort of music that Loretta's husband Micheal plays. The sound was a combination of rag time with some punk style blue grass mixed in.

Thankfully my husband didn't seem to mind our rather bedraggled looking guest when he showed up two hours later. He simply told me that he trusts my judgement and trusts me. Oh how I LOVE that about him. Lex (our guest) turned out to be a fascinating young man from Virginia who has been traveling for about five years.He had been touring the states with a band called profane sass and that he had decided to travel to Canada when they decided to tour California. He recently hitched a ride on CN rail across Canada and has since been exploring B.C. He was only twenty two years old although I never would have guessed it with the amount of facial hair he had going on. I had assumed he was in his mid 30's. He was quiet, mature, soft spoken, intelligent and unafraid of adventure and hardship.

His presence was immensely refreshing and he reminded me of simpler times when Nathaniel and I were travelling around the world. In the morning we sent him off with a bag lunch, a sleeping bag we no longer needed and Nate drove him to the next town where he would have a better chance of catching a ride.

Friday, November 4, 2011


I just finished reading a book called "Skinny Bitch", and while it was intense, vulgar and disturbing it was also incredibly informative and straightforward. To put it lightly, it rocked my world. So much so, that I am seriously considering giving up store bought meat for the rest of my life. I really enjoy and appreciate the taste of meat. I have been eating it my entire life and have never really given much thought to where it came from or how to was processed. A couple of years ago I started buying free range chicken eggs after Nathaniel told me about the time he did some temp work for a chicken factory. Now that I am aware of the horrific, inhumane, torture that animals endure so that we can buy their flesh it at an affordable price,I am disgusted and hell bent on changing my ways. I think that the majority of people would become vegetarians if they knew what took place in most slaughterhouses.

I always had an idea about how cows, chickens and pigs met their demise, but I never knew exactly. Now that I KNOW my conscious will no longer allow me to buy supermarket meat again. I can't even begin to describe what happens in your typical large scale operation. I actually felt like throwing up after reading an explicit chapter on slaughterhouse practices. While I don't think that becoming vegetarian is the answer to my dilemma I do plan on changing my ways. My plan is to eat only animals that either my husband has hunted or from small companies that specialize in free range, ethical meat production. There is one such company down the road from us and I have heard nothing but excellent reviews about them. Last year we got 1/4 of a organic free range cow from them. Apparently (this may sound a little odd) but they play classical music to keep the animals calm, prevent animals from witnessing the death of other animals and only process a few animals a day.

When people hear that my husband hunts they think of "oh how awful" and "how can you kill such lovely creatures" but I can assure you, that the animals that fall to his bow or gun have lived good, healthy lives and die swiftly. The same cannot be said for the majority of animals who end up in tidy little packages in the store. You might feel good about the meat that no longer resembles an animal - all traces of fur, blood and feathers removed, but I can assure you that animal was miserable, lived in its filth, could hardly move for most of its life and died horribly. Are you still hungry? I hope not. I know I am ranting but I can't help it. Not everyone can hunt for their meat, that is not practical or sustainable in our modern day society, but we as a society can demand changes and force companies to change their ways.

Perhaps one day I will become a vegetarian, but for the time being I will be vigilant about where and how I purchase my meat and try and educate others so that they do the same. I hope this resonated with you in some way.

Saturday, October 29, 2011

Yummy things and a busy toddler

Nathaniel bought a LOT of apples last time he was in town, so I decided to turn a few of the less than spectacular ones into applesauce. Amelia loved turning the crank on my apple corer/peeler/slicer and Claire gummed on anything and everything within her grasp. Homemade applesauce is the BEST and incredibly easy to make. you simply cut a peeled apple into small chunks and then boil it on the stove with a couple of tbsp of water until it turns into a thick mush. It makes great organic baby food and is a healthy delicious snack for big people too.

After that Amelia and I made some sugar cookies. I had found a recipe for them on pintrest last week and since I am no longer putting Amelia down for an afternoon nap I needed something to keep her busy. Her body knows that it is tired and acustomed to a two hour nap most afternoons, but if she is preoccupied and having fun she doesn't whine as much about it. Bedtime has become more tolerable for Nathaniel and I as a result.

Friday, October 28, 2011

It has been...

During the day I often think of things to write about. Sometimes I compose entire posts (in my mind), but by the time I get around to actually typing them, I have forgotten most of them or are no longer inspired. So in a nutshell.....

I could have talked about what it is like to have Nathaniel's grandmother stay with us. She has been here for nearly two weeks and will most likely stay until mid November when the snow comes.

I could have gushed about the fact that my little Claire is crawling around the house and trying to pull herself up onto furniture. She will be seven months old on November 1st.

I could have talked about what it felt like to put on my wedding dress this afternoon. (Amelia and I were playing dress up).

I could have talked about how much I love pumpkin spice whoopie pies and that I just polished off my last one today. They are my new favorite autumn treat and I fully intend on making a HUGE batch each fall.

I could have talked about the horrid dog that tried to attack Chester (my dog) at the park and how protective I became.

I could have talked about how tired I am and the fact that Claire woke up over a dozen times last night (nothing out of the ordinary) but some days it leaves me feeling more exhausted than other days.

I could talk about how I'm feeling indecisive about whether or not I want to spend Christmas with my family in the Lower Mainland.

I'm sure there were a lot more things I could have written about, but that is all that comes to mind at the minute.

Wednesday, October 26, 2011


I had been admiring this work of art I found on pintrest for some time and decided to try and print it on my new printer. I copy and pasted it to a folder on my hard rive, re sized it and then increased the image dpi to 300. It worked out quite well.

Speaking of feathers, for which I have a particular affinity, this afternoon my husband handed me a letter from my dear friend Loretta, and nestled within its pages, was this delightful gift....

She often send me feathers from her chickens, and I always appreciate it. It makes me feel like I have a piece of her countryside paradise.

Monday, October 24, 2011

September and October

It has been a fun and busy fall and as a result I have neglected to blog. To save some time on uploading I decided to just make a collage of pictures and share the highlights.

Watching my sunflowers bloom * making upside plum cake * digging potatoes out of our garden * Roaming through the Chilcotin countryside * visiting with Allan and Julie * trying out costumes on the girls * Claire sitting up * having smores around the campfire in our yard * goofing around

Making a leaf garland from felt * Making turkey apples * Enjoying a visit from my parents and brother and sister in law * puddle jumping * brussle sprouts * feeding the local horses * watching Amelia ride her bike * playing with* making and eating pumpkin spice whoopie pies with Holly*

Family photo shoot pictures

I finally have the link to the pictures from our photo shoot and I thought I would share them with you. Here is the link

Let me know which one you like the most !

Saturday, October 15, 2011

Sneak peek

Can't wait to share the rest with you...... (here is a sneak peek)

Thursday, October 13, 2011

My girls

At two and half years of age my Amelia loves.....

1. Picking flowers
2. Rolling down hills
3. Feeding horses
4. Baking cookies with her momma
5. Having "tea parties"
6. Putting stickers on her "helper chart"
7. Doing EVERYTHING by herself
8. Eating chocolate fudgesicles
9. Saying "yeah sure", "I guess so", and "No problem".
10. Riding the tricycle her dad found at the dump

At six months old my Claire loves.....

1. Sucking on oranges
2. Rolling around on our new soft rug
3. Bouncing in her jolly jumper
4. Attention from her older sister
5. Having bubbles blown on her belly
6. Crunching things in her hands
8. Nursing
9. Riding on my hip in the mya sling
10. Having a bath or shower (her whole body wiggles with delight)

Saturday, October 1, 2011

She sits

..... and she LOVES it!

I'm consumed with baking pumpkin spice whoppie pies, sewing felt garlands and dejunking my house, but I will resume blogging one of these days.

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Curls, plum cake and other random topics.....

I made an upside down plum cake the other evening. I had torn the recipe out of a Martha Stewart magazine a couple years ago and have been looking forward to making it for some time. Ripe plums are only available for a small period of time in the summer so I seized the opportunity before they were gone. I didn't have any raspberries so I used blueberries. It was delicious. I could have eaten the whole cake myself. Normally I don't allow myself to eat anything after 7pm but in this instance I had to make an exception. Here is a link to the


I tried something else new the other day. I love having curly hair, but don't have the time, nor the interest in curling it with an iron. Furthermore, my hair refuses to hold curl, so any effort I do make is often thwarted. Nevertheless, I continue to search for ways to overcome such obstacles. The other day I found a great video tutorial on pintrest that explained how to get curls without heat, or much effort. So I tried it. Here are a few photos. They are a little embarrassing. The top curls turned out well, but the lower ones were quite loose so I will have to tinker with the technique o get it to work for my long hair. I ended up wearing my hair in a side braid which I quite liked.

On another note entirely, my dear husband came home from a week long caribou hunt in the mountains, tanned and smiling ear to ear. He got what wanted and is happy as can be.

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Coming up on eight years......

It is hard to believe that Nathaniel and I will be celebrating eight years of marriage this October. Seeing as though we live in the sticks, going out for dinner will not an option, so I decided to find something that we could do as a family and still commemorate the occasion. Three years ago, Nathaniel and I celebrated our fifth wedding anniversary with a photo shoot and we loved it. Ever since then, I have wanted to do it again.. Click here to see more. I wish we could have had another photo session with that photographer, but alas, she now lives a whole province away.

I hoped that I would be able to find a photographer of equal caliber in Willaims Lake and was delighted to find this photographer's website in Williams Lake. I'm hoping to get some great shots of us standing in front on an old barn, on hay bales and in the fields. Our time in the Chilcotin is coming to an end and I think these photos will capture the precious time we have enjoyed in this beautiful country. So much has changed in three years. Nathaniel has a new career, we live in a different area, different home, have two children, a dog and a reliable vehicle. Crazy!!! I wonder what our lives will look like in another three years time?

Wednesday, September 7, 2011


I love to read and I have loved reading as long as I can remember. My mom has an adorable picture of me fast asleep at the age of 6 or 7 with a book half covering my face. When my mom needed to discipline or motivate me she simply took my book away. When Nathaniel and I traveled I think I read over 40 books, possibly more. It was wonderful! Now that I am a mother I do not have as much time to read but I still love it as much as ever and it provides a delightful little escape/treat at the end of a long, monotonous day. A good book is a hundred times better than a movie and I often recall scenes or situations from books far more often than I do from movies.

Here is just a FEW of a few of my favorite books: (meaning I have read them numerous times)
"Gift From The Sea": by Anne Marrow Lindberg
"Echo in the Darkness": by Francine Rivers
"Woman Power" by Dr. Laura Schlessinger
"The Birth House" by Ami McKay
"The Mask of Motherhood" by Susan Maushart

There is a long list of books that I would like to read - at some point in my life. At the moment I am interested in getting my hands on the books "The Hunger Games" and "The Room". I am also interested in checking out some classic literature by author's such as Mark Twain, and Edgar Allan Poe.
I was reading a post written by one of my favorite bloggers "Clover Lane" and she had shared a paragraph from a book she had recently read called "The Hand That First Held Mine". It resonated with me and I decided to share it with you as well. I Here it is....

"We change shape, she continued, we buy low-heeled shoes, we cut off our long hair. We begin to carry in our bags half-eaten rusks, a small tractor, a shred of beloved fabric, a plastic doll. We lose muscle tone, sleep, reason, perspective. Our hearts begin to live outside our bodies. They breath, they eat, they crawl and-look!-they walk, they begin to speak to us. We learn that we sometimes walk an inch at a time, to stop and examine every stick, every stone, every squashed tin along the way. We get used to not going where we were going. We learn to darn, perhaps to cook, to patch the knees of dungarees. We get used to living with a love that suffuses us, suffocates us, blinds us, controls us. We live. We contemplate our bodies, our stretched skin, those threads of silver around our brows, our strangely enlarged feet. We learn to look less in the mirror. We put our dry-clean only clothes in the back of the wardrobe. Eventually, we throw them away. We school ourselves to stop saying 'shit' and 'damn' and learn to say 'my goodness' and 'heavens above'. We give up smoking, we colour our hair, we search the vistas of parks, swimming pools, libraries, cafes for others of our kind. We know each other by our pushchairs, our sleepless gazes, the beakers we carry. We learn how to cool a fever, ease a cough, the four indicators of meningitis, that one must sometimes push a swing for two hours. We buy biscuit cutters, washable pains, aprons, plastic bowls. We no longer tolerate delayed buses, fighting in the street, smoking in restaurants, sex after midnight, inconsistency, laziness, being cold. We contemplate younger women as they pass us in the street, with their cigarettes, their makeup, their tight-seemed dresses, their tiny handbags, their smooth, washed hair, and we turn away, we put down our heads, we keep on pushing the pram up the hill."
- Maggie O'Farrell, The Hand That First Held Mine

Can't wait to check that book out!

Thursday, August 25, 2011


My little Amelia LOVES picking berries, so today we visited a little rasberry patch down the road and picked to our hearts content.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Island Life

We just returned from a wonderful vacation on Vancouver Island. It was a great way to end the summer and it got us really excited about the prospect of living there next Spring. It has been over 10 years since I have lived on the island, but I can't help but feel like I am home the minute the ferry pulls into the harbour. The pace of island life is slower, more relaxed and everything is kissed with the salty ocean air. I LOOOOOVE a market called Combs, which is known for the goats that live on the roof, the beaches in Tofino and Victoria, cathedral grove, the raw, rugged coast,Sointula, the camping spots along upper Campbell lake where I spent much of my childhood, camp homewood on Quadra island,Coombs market, Esperanza.... I could go on and on.

Initially I had reservations about the trip, as the mere thought of spending sixteen plus hours in a vehicle with two small children is enough to give me a panic attack, but we decided to travel at night and the trip was virtually painless. Our girls slept 90% of the time and Nate survived on red bull, coffee and bags of sunflower seeds. Our first stop was in Sointula, which is an island off the northern part of Vancouver Island. We have some great friends who were vacationing there for the summer and it was wonderful to reconnect with them for a couple of days. We spent a great deal of time on the beach, ate fish n chips, took leisurely walks, marveled at each other's recent offspring, went fishing, got stranded in a boat, watched whales (I SAW MY FIRST KILLER WHALE!!!!!!), and chatted away the hours. It was blissful!

We spent our remaining days catching up with Nathaniel's family in Port Hardly. We hadn't seen them since Nathaniel's graduation from depo and we owed them a visit. Amelia was only nine month old the last time she met her grandma and gram pa and it was special watching her get to know them. Nathaniel's mom was thrilled to finally met our little Claire. We got a chance to visit Nathaniel's sisters, get Amelia's hair cut at a salon, eat ice cream, go swimming, look for glass beads on the beach, pick loads of blackberries, huckleberries and thumbleberries, eat out, enjoy the ferry, hold crabs, and do some trail running. I feel rested, refreshed and now I need to tackle the laundry. Love Jocelyn

Sunday, August 7, 2011

I'm going to attempt to make some delicious chocolate curls tonight. If they turn out well I will be using them to decorate the decadent chocolate mouse dessert I will be "attempting" to make for Nathaniel's much belated birthday party.

Thursday, August 4, 2011

A bike ride

After dinner, I tucked Amelia and Claire into the double chariot and hooked it up to my bike so that I could take them for a ride. Normally my girls are pretty fussy at the end of the day and I thought some fresh air would uplift our weary dispositions. My pretty little cruiser has only three speeds, so even a slight hill can be an arduous climb; especially when lugging two children, but I enjoy it immensely. I climbed the long hill that runs past our home, listening to Amelia comment on the wildflowers, saying hi to the neighborhood horse, and singing "twinkle twinkle little star" off key. I glanced back to see how Claire was managing and she was happily leaning against Amelia with big eyes, her chubby feet kicking wildly. Ahhh this is wonderful, I thought to myself as I glanced around me. The sunlight was warm on my skin, but not too hot, and the air was filled with lazy, drifting dandelions.*bliss* I was headed towards home when I noticed a friend of mine watering her garden. She is an incredibly gentle soul, kind, unassuming, genuine, intelligent and fascinating. She has had a great many adventures in her life and she continues to live life to the fullest. In so many ways, she reminds me of my dear Loretta. She noticed me on my bike and asked if she could join me. She went into her garage and pulled out an antique bike from the early 70's. She dusted it off and with a few wobbles, joined me on the road. We both smiled giddily like schoolgirls and peddled up and down the road until I realized I need to get the girls home for a bath. It was such a delightful way to end the the day and I was smitten by the fact that Diane had chosen to join me, especially since it had been years since she had ridden her bicycle.

Saturday, July 30, 2011

my days are filled with........

My days are filled with..... finger painting. singing "twinkle little star". hearing "I want to do it". cuddling. administering time outs. washing hands. giving reminders to use the potty. nursing. making snacks. daydreaming. playing "tea set". baking. lots n lots of laundry. baby talk. twirling. scolding the puppy. sweeping. smiles. tears. tickles. baths. kissing owies better. tucking in. glancing over my shoulder at fresh spit-up. cooking. tidying. playing. and loving.

Friday, July 29, 2011

Little mason jars filled with goodness!

I was browsing on pintrest the other day when I stumbled upon a delightful recipe for mini pie's made in mason jars. Here is the link if you want to to make them. I made a dozen little pies( rhubarb, peach and nectarine), attached some cute tags, and gave them to my friends and neighbors.