Wednesday, 31 October 2012

Happy Halloween 2012

Happy Halloween everyone!
Halloween is such a fun holiday. I really like the dressing up and pumpkin part of Halloween, but I'm not nearly as thrilled about the blood, gore and scary violent part. Mr. Q and I delivered a bunch of flyers for a bottle drive we did earlier this month for the food bank, and passed some decorations that were really terrifying for him. There are so many freaky decorations out there. Maybe not freaky for me, but what 2 year old isn't going to be terrified of some scary werewolf creature with bloody fangs and claws reaching out for him. I'm sure people just don't think about little munchkins having bad dreams.
We had a fantastic time getting ready for Halloween this year. The kids always get so excited about carving pumpkins for Family Night, but then they are so chicken to touch the guts.
Fun times.
 Miss A actually touched a couple of seeds, so she is getting braver than in past years.
 Miss C was happy to scoop out the seeds, but she really wasn't interested in grabbing them at all. After her big sister touched a seed, she also tried touching the icky insides.
 The kids wanted out pumpkin to have scary teeth. I'm not sure if we were successful on that one, but we sure had a blast attempting it.
I made this pumpkin & brought it to my Zumba class last night. I think I'll take it again tomorrow to get one extra night out of it. Matt's fancy wood carving tools get pulled out every year at Halloween. So glad they get some use at least once a year.
Miss C dressed up as Little Red Riding Hood this year.
 What a cutie!
 Mr. Q was a beggar/homeless man. I needed a quick and easy costume for a party we went to on Friday at Galaxyland, and that's what we came up with. There is definitely something to be said for costumes that don't require a lot of work.
 Miss A was a ladybug. She kept telling me that she dressed up as a coccinelle. That's French for ladybug. She loved her painted-on eyelashes best.
I'm sure she's going to love playing with real makeup when she's older.
We took the kids trick-or-treating down our block and one small cul-de-sac. We left at 7 and got back at 7:30 or so. We passed 26 houses and of those, only 10 or 11 had their lights on. They got enough candy. I was glad they didn't come home with pillowcases full like my siblings and I used to when we were kids.
They were in their glory. I can remember, as a kid, laying all of my candy out and seeing how much of each type I got. I showed them my methods. I'm such a weird-o.
I love how Mr. Q's beard is being washed away by candy drool here. lol

Hope you all had a fantastic Halloween!

Wednesday, 10 October 2012

Harvest Time

For a Saturday in October, it really was a beautiful day. We went to my sisters home to help with the potato harvest. They have a big garden and always grow enough potatoes to share with us (and many others), so we wanted to help with picking them.
Some of out kiddos really wanted to be playing with their cousins rather than helping out.
 Some were helpful without much prodding. :)
And one little guy was right in there and stuck it out the whole time. I was proud of him.
Here's the haul. It took less than 2 hours from start of picking to having it stored in the root cellar. We were a great team.
Yesterday, Mr Q & I harvested the carrots from our garden. He was a great helper, yet again.
This little guy has a great work ethic... or maybe he likes spending time with mom. Maybe both. :)

He is scared of worms and spiders. He kept running to the sidewalk & saying, "Mom, I saw a worm. Get it."

I love growing our food.

Saturday, 6 October 2012

Aaargh Matey! A Pirate Party for Miss A

A few months ago, Miss A requested a princess pirate party for her birthday. I wasn't too sure how to blend princess and pirate, so I just went with the pirate theme and made sure there was a pink sparkly jolly rogers on the invitation. She was happy with that! I was inspired by these invitations I saw on Etsy, and my super talented friend Lori helped me make something similar.  The party was from 3:30-6pm, so I had to have everything ready at home so I could pick up 4 little excited party goers from school. My in-laws came over to watch the younger two children, so I'd have more room in my SUV for extra booster seats. In all, there were 13 kids at the party, which was a fair bit of chaos, but they were kept fairly busy, so it went well and there were no injuries other than Miss A starting off her party by being head-butted and getting a wicked bleeding nose. There were also a few moments (when the kids were all pretending that the girls bunk beds were a pirate ship and almost all the kids were on the top bunk) that I got a little nervous, but all was well. Thank goodness!
The highlight of the party for Miss A was opening her presents (At least she was honest, haha) and then the treasure hunt. I handed the little buckaneers the first clue and let them figure it out from there.

The kids divided up the treasure with some help and got to take home their chocolate gold doubloons and dress up jewels. 
They had pizza & fruit to eat and Pirate Pops instead of cake. We put a candle in the head of Miss A's pirate pop as we sang happy birthday to her, but of course the camera was nowhere to be found at that point.

I love planning fun parties for my kids. I love them all everyday, but it's nice to have a special day just for themselves. If I had to pick one of Miss A's defining traits, it would be her compassion. She has a tender heart & I love her for it. Happy 6th birthday Miss A!

Friday, 5 October 2012

Autumn is the most beautiful season

I love fall. I can remember driving downtown Edmonton a little over 6 years ago and picking our daughters name based on the beauty we saw in the river valley.
Other topic:
Right before Matt & I went to Seattle this summer, there was a huge storm and our basement flooded. Water from our neighbours drain pipe flowed right into our basement bathroom window well filling it and flooding in. It soaked the walls & insulation, flowed across the floors and soaked the carpet.
 At least it was rain water and not sewage, right? I keep telling myself that. We dried it out with fans as well as we could, and went on vacation anyway. When we got home, there was a huge mess (and mould) to deal with. We hauled drywall and insulation to the dump. Of course, our insurance wouldn't cover it, so we had to do it ourselves. What good is insurance anyway?
 Mr. Q has been a great 'helper' following daddy around with his drill. Daddy's drill that is. I'm grateful to have a husband who is willing to give it a try, even if he isn't an expert. You can learn how to do pretty much anything on YouTube.
My little sweetie, Miss C started pre-school in the middle of September. She attends at the same school that Miss A attends and she loves her teachers. There was a week, that she cried every time I dropped her off (and she nearly broke my heart in the process...) but she is back to happily running in to her classroom when I drop her off.
 After her first day of school, she came home saying, "Mom, I looove Miss Kim!" That made me feel great to know that my daughter felt comfortable with her teachers. There are 17 four year old kids in her class and 3 teachers. The teachers are all wonderful. Two of them even came to our home the week before school started to meet Miss C and get to know me a little. It made me a lot happier to send her off on the first day, knowing who she was spending the day with.
We walk past Miss A's classroom after we drop Miss C off at pre-school. I couldn't help snapping a pic of her one day as we passed by. What a cute little student she is!

My Zumba classes also started back up again in the fall. I had taken the summer off to spend more time with my family, but I was really excited to get back into the swing of things. I bought some signs to help advertise my classes. I think they are working too! In addition to my lovely ladies who have been with me from the beginning, we have had a huge boost in the number of people coming out. I really do count myself lucky to have such awesome students, who have become friends to me over the last year.

I read a quote once that said: "There is no such thing as gratitude unexpressed. If it is unexpressed, it is plain, old-fashioned ingratitude." -Robert Brault

As this is Thanksgiving weekend, I really wanted to list some of the things I am thankful for.
 I have a totally wonderful husband to adventure with. I'm thankful for his love and patience. He's a good man and I love him.

I've got 3 fantastic kids who make me laugh. They are great kids who are friends with each other. I love them and am truly thankful to have each of them in our family.
I'm thankful for tickle time in mommy & daddy's bed.

I'm thankful for the toothless smile the Tooth Fairy gave my daughter with her tiny note.

I'm thankful for a warm home, for good food, for parents & siblings who care, for great in-laws who are always willing to help out, for great music & for good friends to enjoy myself with. For the beautiful tree across the street that was glowing one morning when I got up (picture up top).... and so much more!

I am truly blessed. Happy Thanksgiving everyone!

-More about Miss A's fantastic pirate party to come.

Tuesday, 4 September 2012

School Time Stings

Last week, while walking to our car near Miss A's school, the kids and I were swarmed by wasps and Miss C and I were stung. She, on her finger and I on my forearm, the back of my thigh above my knee, my ankle and my neck. All on the left side of my body. Those little suckers hurt. Miss C was stung first, so I ran to her rescue. They were all over her, on her head, all over her clothes. She was, understandably, freaking out. I had no idea what you're supposed to do in a situation like that, so I yelled to the other kids to run to the car, and I started swatting them off Miss C. I didn't know what else to do. Of course, they got mad and started stinging me too. I quickly gave up on trying to get them off her and told her to run too. I was being swarmed and stinging like crazy at this point, so I just told Miss C to RUN!!! We ran towards the car, which was parked at the other side of the school. When we got to the car, the kids all hopped in but I couldn't get into the car, because I was still covered in wasps. My rolled up capris had wasps in the folds, I could still hear wasps that were stuck in my hair. It was pretty awful. I used a map from the car to swat wasps that were still attached to my pants and shoes. All while listening to my little sweetie screaming in pain. I wouldn't wish that on anyone.
When we got home, we coated her sting in a baking soda paste and gave her some Advil. The poor girl fell asleep from sheer exhaustion from crying so hard. It was sad.
 Miss A was very sweet and wanted to do something to make her feel better when she woke up. We decided to make her a Barbie car. Miss A painted hers silver and we spray painted the one for Miss C with some leftover spray paint we had sitting around. The cars are lacking wheels, so we just called them boats. I love how Miss A wanted to have feathers sticking out the back of hers. All I did was spray paint the red one, hot glue them together and cut out the holes, the girls did the rest when Miss C woke up.
 They are still playing with those cars now, though some of the jewels have fallen off.
 On another topic, today was Miss A's first day of Grade 1. She has been looking forward to it. I have been looking forward to having a routine again, though I have loved having the kids all home for the summer. Now that Miss A is in school M-F all day long, I will miss her, so will the other kiddos. Miss C was very excited to see that Miss A's pre-school classroom is directly across the hall from Miss A's classroom. She was so excited this morning. I hope she continues to love learning through her life.
 Have a great school year Miss A!