Monday, April 21, 2014

Easter 2014


Nannies and Aunties from away have been requesting an Easter update! We have had a lovely four day weekend. (I suppose it is rather early to call it, but three out of four days have been great). We've managed to squeeze in a neighbourhood egg hunt, lots of visits with Nanny and Pop (Vi's great grandparents), a church concert, and of course our annual family Easter dinner aka the only time any of us eat lamb all year! Jeff even took the whole day off from studying yesterday. I think that might be the first day since Christmas that he hasn't either worked or studied (and most days he does both)! Violet and I have a low key day in store, a little Frog Pond action this afternoon, but other than that just hanging out enjoying our double digit weather (fingers crossed!).

Here are some pictures I snapped this weekend.

xo

Em

{Isleville egg hunt with our neighbourhood besties}


{two peas in a pod}


{not sure what is going on here, but I picture the song "Happy" playing in the background}


{I'm sorry, is it 1950?}

{Vi hugging her baby bro}

{street dance party}




{this photo captures Vi's essence!}










Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Pippi!



Last week Violet and I finished reading Pippi Longstocking. It was such a cute story. It had Violet belly laughing almost every night. That Pippi, such an imp! She was obviously the inspiration for Violet's weekend hairdo, although Vi was quite disappointed I couldn't get her braids to stick straight out. It is so fun to be able to read longer books with Vi now that she is a little older. I've been collecting children's classics since she was a baby and now we actually get to use them. (They were totally cute on her bookshelf this whole time, so no regrets on the early purchase ;) ).

I thought Vi might be ready for chapter books about a year ago and I asked her which one she'd like to start with. She choose Black Beauty, which I had never read. I thought I knew the story, well, I knew it was about a horse, but other than that I was in the dark. Spoiler alert: during the first chapter a young man dies and a horse is shot. Violet didn't find this as disturbing as I did, but it was the super moral undertone that really turned me off. The young boy was being reckless, he made bad choices and so he died. Oh, and the innocent horse's dealth was his fault too. Way too heavy for a four year old. Back to Fancy Nancy it was!

Earlier this winter we decide to try chapter books again. I asked the trusty staff at Woozles what they recommended as my next two choices were just as inappropriate as Black Beauty. (Huckleberry Finn -- (a) so hard to read aloud (b) race and class issues I'd rather not explain to my curious child at this point and Anne of Green Gables -- perfect in every way, but slow and boring when you are used to picture books.) They suggested Stuart Little -- of course! We started with Stuart (big hit), moved on to Charlotte's Web (again, big hit and not as devastating as you would have thought at the end) and then we branched out to Pippi. So fun! We just started reading The Borrowers this week, and I'm not as into as the other books we've read together, maybe because I didn't read it as a child myself.

What about you, do you read chapter books to your kiddos? Did you like being read to as a kid? I need more suggestions. I think she is too young for some of my faves (those mentioned above, and also The Hobbit and Narnia), but maybe not. I would love your suggestions.

Oh, also, Violet has suggested Wilbur as a good option for her baby brother's name. What do you think, Wilber or Dash?!

xo

Em

Friday, April 11, 2014

weekday reading (for the weekend)

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In case you hadn't heard our news, we're having a BOY! Jeff tried to restrain his obvious joy, holding back a fist pump and muttering something about, "as long as the baby is healthy", but he was grinning from ear to ear all day yesterday. Violet was also tickled blue when she heard the news. She said, "Mum, I didn't even have to ask Jesus for a brother, he just knew how much I wanted one." What can I say? Vi and Jesus operate on the same wavelength.

Equally exciting, today is my father's birthday. For those of you who know him, you know he really is the sweetest man around. We're having a BBQ at our place tonight, one of the first of the season. I did my best to make pecan pie last night, but I am really not gifted in the pastry department. I tried Martha's crust with butter since shortening freaks me out, but I'm wondering if it will be more like a shortbread than traditional pastry. Who am I kidding? Shortbread crust sounds amazing! Opps, back to my dad! I'm excited to celebrate with him tonight and to make him feel special. He spends all his time doing the same thing for others, so it really is the least we can do.

Here is some reading for your weekend (I'll go ahead and assume you're busy tonight).

xo

Em

Children's food preferences start in the womb? My baby is going to LOVE breakfast sandwiches. Jeff makes the best ones ever!

We're going to a BBQ tomorrow too and I'm bring a salad. I might try a gluten-free version of this little number. Yum!

A beautiful article about prayer  (via Cup of Jo)

Men in tights. So wrong, right?

A six hour work day? Reason number 456 to move to Scandinavia.

Jeff I told you shopping is an educational experience for children. That is why I do it. So selfless...

What kind of entertainer are you? Fun quiz!

Such a sweet little swim suit.

Thursday, April 10, 2014

girl or boy?



Today is the day!

In a few short hours Jeff and I are heading to the IWK for our 20 week scan. We are on the 7th floor, which means one thing to Halifax mamas -- we'll be able to find out the sex of our baby, today! At least I am pretty sure that is what that means. Fingers crossed.

Do you have any guesses? What do you think? Another little girl, a mini-Violetta? Or a boy?

Violet wants a boy. She would like to name him Dash so they can be like Violet and Dash in The Incredibles. We just might be up for that! I think she knows deep down that a boy may be less likely to play with her toys and steal her clothes in the future, but she hasn't articulated that, she just knows she wants a brother. Her biggest fear is that the baby will have straight hair like the kind she lusts after and the kind her best friend has. So really Violet wants a boy or a curly haired girl. Anything but a sister will gorgeous pin straight hair will do.

Jeff wants a boy too doesn't care as long as our baby is healthy. That is a fact, but I'm sure he'd like to even out the estrogen/testosterone balance in our household (which would probably take an army of men, if we are being honest).

I honestly don't have a preference. I know girls. I am one and we have one, which brings me both great comfort and great fear about bringing another little lady into this world! A boy would be a new experience and it would be cool to get to raise a little man too. I am just so happy to finally be pregnant, I don't really care what is in there as long as it is healthy. I'm not picky!

I'll let you know tonight. Eeeek! So excited. Seriously, such fun!

xo

Em

ps -- all those cute (very expensive) clothes are from j crew baby.

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

buttered popcorn chocolate chip cookies



Saturday was a very rainy day in Halifax, not that I am complaining. If the rain takes away the awful white stuff still lingering along street curbs and in parking lots, then bring it on. After our usual morning routine (marketing and ballet-ing) Violet and I decided to get in the kitchen and make a treat for our main man who spends most of his spare time holed up in his office our future nursery studying things like "equity" and "fixed income". Could anything be more boring?

Jeff is a man with simple taste when it comes to dessert. There is almost nothing he'd choose over a regular ol' chocolate chip cookie and I love that about him. His Nanny's cookies were the best, his sister's are a close second and I've managed to wrangle third place on his list of all time favourites. Hey, I have a lifetime to improve my position on this one. I'm not worried. Anyway, let's be honest people, this whole cookie making adventure was not only about Jeff. Sure we wanted to make him a treat, but Vi and I are bored with regular old chocolate chip cookies. We wanted something more. (I should clarify we are not tired of eating them, rather the process has become a little less exciting than it was 50 odd batches ago).

Enter buttered popcorn chocolate chip cookies.

There really isn't much more to these cookies than the name implies. You simply make popcorn, make cookie dough and mix the two together. We simplified this process further by using Skinny Pop I bought at Costco (yum!) and making it significantly less skinny by adding melted butter. I will note that the dough to popcorn ratio seems bananas at first. I thought I must have misread the recipe. Do not despair, the popcorn gets much smaller once you give the batter a vigorous stir -- this was clearly Violet's favourite part of the whole ordeal.

Jeff was pleased with our offering, we had appealed to his love of sweet and salty while maintaining the integrity of his favourite dish. Wife and daughter win!

Here is where I got the recipe. I love Joy the Baker!

xo

Em









Friday, April 4, 2014

weekday reading

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Normally I like to post my weekday reading list on a day other than Friday. We are all too busy to read articles online on a Friday night, right? Right. Jeff has a work commitment tonight (a fun one, don't feel bad), so it will be the Violet and Emily show on Roome St. I can almost guarantee in will involve watching Frozen for the seventieth time, but hey, I'll take the snuggles where I can get 'em! We have a low key weekend in store, which is just what the doctor ordered and you wanna know the best thing? I can see blue in the sky. It might be optimistic, but it feels a little more like spring. Finally! My snow rage was getting out of control!

Have a lovely weekend, friends!

xo

Em

I grilled halloumi last night and we had it with a simple salad, but this salad sounds amazing. Leave it to Yotam.

I know I should "leave my kid alone", but at the same time I want to coat the sidewalk with marshmallows and blow glitter in the air as she walks so her life is safe and beautiful. So hard to give kids freedom (at least it is for me).

Butter is back? Where did it go is the better question?

Speaking of butter, this is not the Domestic Goddess's year. I'm still on Team Nigella!

April is Autism awareness month. I loved this mum's story about her love/hate relationship with the disorder.

My dad hates peas, so as an act of rebellion I might make this green pea hummus #livedangerously

Would you mix your salad with your bare hands? Tips on avoiding common salad mistakes.

Our future nursery is super duper tiny (smaller than your closet, I would put money on it) but I've been thinking about using wallpaper on one wall and I love these. I think my favourite is Into the Wild.


Thursday, April 3, 2014

unabashed photo dump

So it would appear we have missed sharing Christmas (fun, but hormonally charged), Valentine's day (Bicycle Thief cake eaten out of styrofoam take out containers, bien sur), Vi's birthday (super sparkly), my birthday (super wrinkly) and Saint Patrick's day (as if we do anything on Saint Patrick's day, let's be honest). Feel caught up? Maybe these snaps will help:

Thanks for indulging me.

xo

Em

{did you miss me?}
{pretending to be Daddy - nailed it!}
{little reindeer -- thanks Susie!}

{resident breakfast maker extraordinaire}
{rang in the New Year with these ladies -- such a fun wedding Leah!}
{that face}
{Vi asked me to lay on her sheepskin rug so she could take my photo...}

{someone is FIVE - yes I cried}
{Bun in the oven outtakes} 
{baby's first selfie}

Tuesday, April 1, 2014

I'm back!



At least I think I am. I'm back for now. How's that?

So, I never planned to take a four month break from blogging. It was kind of rude of me to just bugger off, wasn’t it? It just sort of happened. It obviously isn’t a coincidence that I stopped blogging around the same time I found out I was pregnant. Part of me wanted to share my experience with fertility treatment and going through the first trimester with you, but I didn’t think I had the strength to be open about the process if something didn’t work out or worse, if something went wrong. The thought just seemed too much to bear. So I took some time, read other people’s blogs, read more novels (code for watched more Netflix, obviously) and tried to be relaxed which I have discovered goes against every fibre of my being.

I’ve had some sweet emails reminding me that maybe I should start blogging again, and my sweet husband tells me the same thing all the time. Until today I just wasn’t feeling it. I didn’t feel like I had anything to offer. I've been feeling so anxious and nauseous and tired but also so elated that some nights its all I can do to crawl into bed. I do, however, love being creative. I love the challenge of thinking of new ways to present the little things that make life special. I love taking millions of pictures of my favourite girl and sharing hundreds of them with my friends and family through this blog. Also, I know you want daily updates on how my bump is growing…maybe a live belly cam…

I promise not to do that. I pinky swear, in fact.

This is an exciting time for my little family and I want to share it with the ones we love most. So, I hope I haven’t stayed away too long. You’ll have me back, right?

xo

Em