Wednesday, October 31, 2012

c'est l'halloween

How many mini-chocolate bars equal a big chocolate bar?

Don't answer that question.

I tried to buy treats I am not a huge fan of, but then I realize I'll eat almost any treat if it is around. I should have just gotten the stuff I love!

Violet went to a Halloween birthday party this weekend. There really is nothing cuter than babies and toddlers in costumes. Well, pets in costumes are pretty darn cute too! Violet dressed up as a cupcake. When she was given a cupcake at the party her mind was basically blown, "Mummy, I am a cupcake eating a cupcake!". She then proceeded to tell that to every grown up who would listen.

I'll post pictures of the real deal tonight or tomorrow, but here are some cute ones from her weekend warm-up.

Thanks for the great party Sophia!



You know those days when you just can't get a good shot:

{no eye contact}

[slightly creepy expression}

{fake smile/no eye contact}

{sad cupcake}

{Vi got a carving set as a party favour -- cool idea huh?}

Monday, October 29, 2012

Vi and Em take on the weekend

I miss my husband -- but for now the CFA owns him -- until December it is the Violet and Emily show

Who wants to play?

{early morning smiles}

{shopping for birthday presents after dance class}

{Nana made us bunting -- one perk of a broken hip is a crafty Nana!}

{guess what we made?}

{the sous chef}

{chocolate covered pretzel pumpkins -- before we ran out of green m&ms}


{I am so unmotivated to cook for two}

{Sweet Jeff did join us for his and hers boiled eggs on Sunday morning}


Friday, October 26, 2012

clear eyes, full hearts, can't lose

Mitt Romney stole my catch phrase!

Actually, Mitt Romney and I stole the phrase from Friday Night Lights (which I have never seen; I heard the phrase from my husband who was trying to inspire Violet during toddler indoor soccer). For some reason no one seemed to mind when I did it...

I kind of forgot about my weekly "things that make me happy post", but I figured now is as good a time as any to reserect the idea.

I've also added a few links for you at the end of the post. Some of my favourite blogs do this at the end of the week and I always look forward to it. Let me know if you like it or not.



{mini & maxi halloween inspired nails}
Some people would pause before painting their toddler's nails black. Those people probably balk at the idea of using a flat iron on a child or giving them sips of diet coke. I don't think those people would like me very much.

{red tights}
I asked Jeff to pick me up some tights at American Apparel this week. I tried the Joe Fresh variety a few weeks ago and they lastest exactly one day -- less if you take into account the fact the got a run in them the first morning I wore them.

Sweet Jeff didn't know the difference between tights and leggings (fair mistake, I do use the terms interchangeably). He came home with two pairs of overpriced leggings. Even though he returned them that night they wouldn't give him his money back. Isn't that brutal? I got new tights and now Jeff has an American Apparel gift card. I foresee a Christmas sock full of brightly colored cotton!

{ground turkey on a pizza}
What next hot dogs? I saw a recipe for pizza with ground turkey, roasted red peppers and goat cheese -- sounds good right. We invited my parents over and gave it a try. It was good -- sausage would have been better, but it wouldn't have been as healthy I suppose.

{feed me!}

Violet asked me to take this picture of her. I was trying to teach her to put her napkin on her lap when she ate. She did not think that was a good idea -- instead this was her suggestion...

Have a great weekend and check out these links:

Lena on Obama

I'm glad it is not just me (though I am short and I still can't do one)

this made me cry  

I'm for sure making this on the weekend

cutest ever pantry storage

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

come on in: living room

Come on in! 

Did I tell you about my living room? For the last year it has had a very wet wall. See that fireplace? It was surrounded by a peeling wet wall until about two weeks ago. From what I gather the moisture was from a chimney reno gone wrong -- yikes. The awesome thing about renting is that the work was done and there was nary a bill in sight! The crappy thing about renting is that the problem took, oh, almost a year to be dealt with. I may or may not have told my landlord Christmas would be ruined if the walled didn't get fixed. That is honestly how I felt!

Nothing if not dramatic...

So, what do you think? Would you like to have a coffee with me in this room? That is an actual invitation, not a hypothetical question by the way. Prefer a cocktail? We have a bar, but I want to paint it before I show you. (If you come over I won't hide if, but I don't want to put in online yet.)

I love the light in this room, and the floors and the rad couch we got on kijiji. It isn't mid-century style it is actually from the middle of the last century! We bought it from a very old lady deep in the South End. It's from Denmark, you can imagine my delight.

I seem to gravitate toward blue when it comes to home decor.What colour do you think I should add as an accent? I think yellow maybe, but I haven't found anything yellow that would suit yet.

As always, advice is welcome.



ps -- seriously, when are you coming over?

{slowly rebuilding my (our) library}

{cute couch for a kijiji find no?}

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

only words can express

{it was a no-photo kind of day}

This morning as I was getting ready for work, I poured myself a bowl of cereal just like any other day. I turned around to refill my coffee cup and "pouf" the milk was gone. I looked everywhere, but I could not find the milk. This is impossible, I thought to myself. How can you lose 4 litres of milk. Minutes later (I don't know how long, but an absurd amount of time) I found the milk. It was on top of the fridge. 

And the rest of the day went something like that.

It wasn't a bad day, just an off day.

I should have known not to try something new for dinner, but we have so many vegetables in our crisper and these broccoli and potato nuggets looked so good. I started off well. I prepped all the veggies, I even took pictures of my work in the last of the day's natural light. I was excited to have a nutrious meal to serve my family and a new recipe to share with you. Then I heard Violet.

"Mum, is my tongue orange?"

"No, why? Did you have something special for a snack at Susie's?"


Then I saw the ink pad. 

Last weekend I showed Violet how to make different things with her finger prints -- you know, a catterpiller or a snowman. She loved it.

"Violet, did you lick the ink?"

"No, I was just doing a tongue print."

There was orange drool all over her latest work of art.

I scanned the label -- non toxic. Probably not the best before dinner snack nonetheless.

By the time I cleaned up the little and prepped the rest of the meal, my beautiful light was gone. I can't get a decent picture with the lighting in my house -- everything looks orange, not unlike my daughters mouth.

I miss June with its promise of summer and 10:00 sunsets. 



Sunday, October 21, 2012

the weekend Violet wore striped leggings and forgot her manners

{who me?}
What a weekend. I swear there was something in the water because Violet was a complete imp morning, noon and night. She didn't listen or cooperate without being threatened within in inch of her life (read: without being warned she would lose one of her bedtime stories). Holy frustrating batman.

I'm pretty sure she was doing on purpose, just to test me. I think I saw a twinkle in her eye whenever my blood pressure began to rise.

My mother reminded me that this too shall pass. I glared at her, which basically disproved what she said.

In other news I decided to dress Violet in stripes all weekend. I love stripes and I thought if I focused on the stripes instead of the child we may get along better. It didn't work, but she sure looked cute (just don't tell her that*).



*thanks for recommending this article Shelia!

{in a snit}
{romance novel cover for tots}

{she's cute, but don't tell her}

Thursday, October 18, 2012


{books then bed -- kiddos do it right}
Violet is asleep, Jeff is off studying and there are, as always, a million things I could be doing with my time. I have marking to do, chores that are unfinished and a best friend who I owe a phone call to, but I have decided to be completely indulgent. It is 8:11, I am in my nightie and I have my book beside me. I will read and then sleep. It will be glorious. To do lists be damned.

I seem to always be overcomitting myself and then running around a bit like a chicken with its head cut off. I'm not the most self-aware person in the world, but even I can recognize that deep down I must like being busy. Either that or I must not like being idle. Why else would I agree to do so much and then try to bake cookies on top of it?

I guess if my hyperactivity comes from a healthy place it is probably fine. My friend Keira and I were talking about character traits the other week and she pointed out that "good traits" can come from unhealthy places and vice versa (I am totally paraphrasing, this was one of our hallway conversions so don't hold Keira to this). For example, say I really like being around people, is that because I am super social (healthy place) or because I can't be alone (unhealthy)?

Interesting. I hadn't really thought of it that way before.

I think that sometimes my propensity to buzz around comes from an unhealthy place. Why can't I just rest, be quiet, relax and indulge in the bliss that is doing nothing? I don't have an answer to that, but I do have a good book and a pile of dirty laundry I am basically giving the finger to.

What can I say, I am doing it for my mental health.



Wednesday, October 17, 2012

one of those weeks {and it is Wednesday}

{oy vey}

So last night I made biscuits to go with leftover soup from the weekend -- sounds nice right?

The recipe I tried called for a Tbsp of salt

That is a lot of salt

Did I question said recipe? Not for a minute

The biscuits were beautiful, a mile high

They tasted like a salt lick

Into the compost, the lot of them

Later last night, sweet Jeff took turkey sausages out of the freezer for our dinner tonight

What a helpful husband

Then he forgot about them

I found them this morning

I love the smell of room temperature turkey sausage in the morning


Second dinner time fail of the week (and this was on Wednesday morning)

Needless to say we had breakfast for supper tonight

God bless the scrambled egg



ps -- I am not trying to be a poet -- the period on my keyboard stopped working and Jeff (and more importantly his computer) are out studying for the dang CFA -- not that I feel sorry for myself {cue sobbing into tear soaked pillow}

Monday, October 15, 2012

as of late: the october edition

{post-dance hair do}

{finally a broccoli soup I can get behind}

{just two gals chatting at a party}

{he likes his with maple syrup and toasted nuts (she prefers a healthy dose of brown sugar)}

{banged up but still smiling}

{not our Christmas card}

{apple crisp before}

{soup season}
{filling up all the white space at Nana's request}

{apple crisp after}

{a gift from Papa}

Sunday, October 14, 2012


{super cute even with a few bumps and bruises}
See that face? Don't let if fool you, she is (in the words of Buck 65 via Mark Harris) full of beans and big ideas.

Tonight as Violet said her prayers she said something that stopped me in my tracks. She said, "I am thankful that my skin is not brown."

Did that just happen?

Prayer over Violet. Mummy needs to make sure that God knows you didn't mean that (as if, right?1?). Immediately, I sprung into a diatribe about racial equality. I used words that I am not sure I understood and I am positive Violet did not. This lasted at least five minutes before I took a breath.

I can't believe she just said that, I thought to myself. I knew we should have spent more time at the pool.

Violet looked at me and said, "Mum, I'd just rather have purple skin, I don't like brown."

She doesn't like brown. True. Nor does she like black, green, dark blue or pretty much any color other than fuchsia. Oh, so this was a comment about colors of the rainbow, not race. Gotcha.

Violet gave me a, "you are crazy lady" look and turned over.

I think I am crazy. Time for bed!



Thursday, October 11, 2012

reading aloud

{books I can't wait to read to Violet}
Violet had a mid-week sleepover with her Auntie Lou last night, as a result the morning felt like an eternity rather than a blur. I drank my coffee while it was hot. Wonders never cease. With all my spare time I came across an interesting article while I ate my breakfast. It was about reading aloud.

My dad used to read to my siblings and I when we were growing up. We read Huckleberry Finn, Swallows and Amazons, Stuart Little, Anne of Green Gables, The Secret Garden, The Hobbit and most of the Narnia series. We even had Narnia nicknames -- dorkiest family ever! After we finished each book my mum would organize a little theme party. She made a raft in our living room and we drank ginger beer on it after Huck Finn. We went on a walk in the woods wearing hooded towel suits after The Hobbit. My mum even made Raspberry cordial (no alcohol) when we finished Anne of Green Gables. So fun. Between the ages of 13-20 I was mortified that these events took place, but now I think it is awesome. Impressive parental effort no?

Anyway, the article I read this morning laments the lost art of reading aloud between adults, not adults to children. Parents have to read to their kids, or so the article states. 

I love the idea of being read to. I think it is romantic and harkens back to a simpler time, like before watching movies on a laptop in bed was considered romantic (because that is romantic right?). I bounced the idea off my friends at work and they were less enthused than I was. I can only imagine Jeff's response. Maybe if I offered to read Sports Illustrated...

So what do you think? Romantic or cheeseballs?



Wednesday, October 10, 2012

giving thanks

{lots of be thankful for}

 We decided to host Thanksgiving dinner at our place this summer when we were in PEI. Eager to get my grandparents over to the mainland we made them promise they would eat turkey at our place this year. They obliged us and so we prepared to host dinner for eight at our table for four.

Jeff was eager to brine our turkey and so we soaked our 14lb bird in salted and sugared water for over 12 hours. I was less enthused. The thought of poultry festering in a plastic vessel overnight wasn't doing it for me this year. I've brined a turkey before with my friend Jayme in Calgary. At the time we didn't have a cooler so we filled the crisper in her fridge with salt water! Now, that is commitment to turkey!

Jeff took Violet to church and then to the pool so I could prep and cook sans interruption. When I pulled the turkey out of the cooler it had an oddly human feel. The skin had become more transparent than usual and I could see the poor bird's muscles (that is what we eat right? muscles? sick.) I rinsed him off in the sink in much the same way I used to rinse Violet off at the cottage. It felt really weird. Wrong and weird, but I love turkey dinner so I persevered.

As I bathed our dinner the most disgusting thing happened: I got a feather splinter. Yes, a feather splinter. I love that we got our turkey at the market, but if it means seeing remnants of feathers I'm not sure I can stomach that much closeness with nature. If I get avian flu you will all know why.

The dinner went off without a hitch. I manged to fit all the food on each plate and all the people at the table (except for Violet who was relegated to her pink desk in the corner, which she loved). I thought the turkey was a teeny bit salty, but no one else agreed (it is possible they are just scared of me). Nanny made two pies (one for Jeff and one for everyone else -- for real), a perfect ending to a great meal.

I really have to work on taking pictures while I cook. I pride myself of being a good multitasker, but I can never seem to capture every step of the process. I took a few pictures of the bread I baked, one or two shots when everyone sat down to eat, but once my turkey coma began to set in I was out of commission as a photographer!

Nonetheless, here are a few pictures from our weekend, including a magical father-daughter-granddaughter hike at Hemlock Ravine. We have a history of such hikes which started when Vi was still in a baby bijorn. This year she walked almost the whole hour. She complained, but she did it!


{Ellen's bread works everytime}

{even as rolls}