Tuesday, November 30, 2010

By popular demand...

Alright alright - so you want the rest of the recipes I mentioned ... here you go - here are a few from my Christmas Treats arsenal...

Chocolate Peanut Butter Balls
1/2 cup margarine
2/3 cup peanut butter
2 cups icing sugar
6 handfuls (3 cups) rice krispies

Mix together into 1/2-1" balls (the mixture can seem dry - you need to wash your hands, roll up your sleeves and really get in there and mush it together - then roll into balls). Once all rolled, use spoon to dip balls into melted chocolate and drop onto waxed (or parchment) paper - then freeze. (Key here is to not make your balls too big - because dipping them in the chocolate makes them even larger - you want a 2 bite max treat)

My tip: don't use just any chocolate here - go to the Bulk Barn and buy some Merkens dark chocolate wafers. Merkins is the BEST chocolate to use for molds and this type of thing - great wax content (which means shiny finish) and yes, the dark is yummier than the milk chocolate for these balls. Also looks prettier. And no, Nestle is not better, or even on par - go MERKENS.

Cherry Surprises
1-3/4 cups icing sugar
1/2 cup margarine (you can use butter in a pinch - but margarine works better - just don't think about the ickiness of it all)
1-1/2 cups fine shredded coconut
1 tsp orange juice
3 dozen maraschino cherries (red or green or both - but not the pieces - you want full cherries)
Vanilla crumbs (can also use graham cracker crumbs - but vanilla oh so much better)

Dry off cherries with paper towel - you don't want them dripping in syrup. Mix ingredients together. Take 1 tablespoon and shape around cherry to form balls. Roll in vanilla crumbs. Freeze well.

White Chocolate Christmas Fudge
12 ounces white chocolate (can use any white chocolate - but again I reco Merkens)
1 can sweetened condensed milk (Eagle Brand - yum)
1/2 cup dried cranberries
1/2 cup chopped pistachios (green)
1 tbsp grated orange peel

Line a 8" square pan with foil with ends extending over sides. Microwave chocolate and milk in large bowl on medium until almost melted (or melt on stove - I prefer this method). Stir until chocolate is completely melted - add cranberries, nuts and orange peel. Spread mixture into prepared pan. Refrigerate 2 hours or until firm. Store in fridge up to 3 weeks - do not freeze (although I have and it's fine - but whatevs, this is what my recipe says).

For the Homemade Turtles - there isn't a recipe - just go to a local bulk store where they sell chocolate molds and pick up some turtles. Then, using Merkens chocolate (melted) - line a thin layer of chocolate on the molds, add softened caramel in the belly and pecans in the legs - then top with more melted chocolate and freeze. Pop out of the molds and voila - homemade Turtles. I DO NOT make these - these are my Mom's obsession and she fiddly-asses around with them for a few weeks to make a few batches to share out. Very time intensive and not on my list of "to make" at holiday time (I just steal hers... ha!).

Happy baking peeps!


Monday, November 29, 2010

Churchlady Shortbread

Christmas baking has always been a thing in my house. Growing up my mom really set the bar with an impressive array of treats every year. Cherry Surprises, homemade Turtles, Peanut Butter Balls. It wasn't so much cookies as it was a conglomerate of treats... and my friends growing up would always look forward to their share in the treats.

But shortbread were never part of the mix - at least not a consistent part. I remember my mom making the roll-it-out dough style shortbread - I loved cutting the shapes out and "helping" at this. But the cookies - meh... they were okay but give me a Peanut Butter Ball any day of the week.

That is - until we discovered the Churchlady Shortbread. Mom started buying her shortbread from one of the local churches - they had a bakesale but you could also order some of the treats (nothing like making the old women of the church really work for their money). The shortbread were $10 (I think?) for a large coffee can container. We always ordered 3 containers. 1 for me - 1 for mom - and 1 to share on cookie trays.

No wonder I always gained 10 pounds at Christmas...

Sooooo - long story short. The poor old lady that used to make this scrumptiously delicious shortbread... stopped making it. I don't believe she passed away (although I'm sure she's no longer with us this many years later - bless) - but she got old enough that she wasn't into making shedloads of cookies at Christmas anymore.

It was a travesty. We were distraught. And so what did we do?

Oh that's right - we tracked down the woman and called her and begged her (daughter who answered the phone) for the recipe...

No really - they're THAT good.

And so - I can now make all the ridiculously good shortbread I want. And so can you! Here's the recipe...

Whipped Shortbread (aka Churchlady Shortbread):
1 pound of butter (softened)
1 cup icing sugar
1/2 cup cornstarch
3 cups flour
1 tsp vanilla
+ Sprinkles! Don't forget your sprinkles!! :)

Add butter + vanilla to food processor - whip. Add icing sugar - whip. Add cornstarch - whip. Add flour - 1 cup at a time - whip whip whip. It should be about the consistency of whipped cream at this stage - fluffy and yummy (taste it - soooo good!). Now - using a cookie press (or just dollop onto a baking sheet if you don't have a cookie press - but really? Who doesn't have a cookie press? I recommend the Wilton press!) drop cookies onto ungreased baking sheet. Add sprinkles (yum!). Bake at 300 degrees Fahrenheit for 8-12 minutes.

My tip? Put your cookie sheet on a higher level than you normally use in the oven - and check your cookies at 8 minutes - that's all I ever bake them for. Because you DON'T want brown bottoms or edges - shortbread never looks "cooked".

Melt in your mouth perfection...


PS - Best way HANDS DOWN to eat your shortbread? Straight from the freezer? Trust me...

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Let's put it to a vote...

Okay - here's the backstory. After happening across a wallpaper design that I fell in love with, I began planning our half-bath/laundry room makeover. Because it's a small space, I knew it could take a rather bold design. And because it also did double duty as a laundry room, I wanted to add some beadboard wainscoting to amp up the "mudroom" appeal...

So after LOTS and LOTS of months of procrastination, I decided to finally pull the trigger and make the order. After getting a rather large quote from the original store I saw the pattern, I decided to search out some online options. I ended up finding a fabulous deal from a Californian online wallpaper shop - well, what started off as a fabulous deal...

(This is where I learned the #1 lesson of ordering online. Don't let UPS deliver you a package originating in the States. EVER. You will get charged a $40 customs broker fee + whatever ridonkulous taxes/charges may be levied. So yeah - here's your free lesson - ALWAYS ask what the shipping method will be and if they say UPS run very far away from that transaction.)

Anyhoo - so the UPS charges aside, I still sort of came out on top from a cost perspective...

Until I opened the package. And realized they had sent me the wrong wallpaper.


So onto the phone - I filed my complaint and tried to determine how they were going to fix this - I wasn't paying for more non-refundable shipping etc etc etc. Turns out while the order fulfillment error was clearly on their end, the pattern I had ordered was no longer being made and couldn't be shipped. (And yes this infuriated me, and trust me you don't want to hear how that conversation went - but I have accepted it now and we need to move on people. MOVING. ON.)

So I've perused their site a lot - and picked a few options - but really can't decide because I don't love any of them as much as my original choice... so here's where you come in! I want opinions!

Here's the original design that I had ordered (because I have a thing for blue recently) (clearly, as Katie's room proved) (and also worked really well with white beadboard/trim + choc brown accents - because those design plans aren't gonna be changing)...

This is the original - a duck egg blue background that was slightly irridescent and absolutely lovely in person. *Sigh* Yes, I'm still a little bitter it's not available...

So here's the options - please weigh in on which # you'd choose as a replacement...

1. Replace with same design, but different background colour. 
It comes in a few colourway options - but I think yellow is the only other that even slightly appeals to me.

2. Keeping blue + flower theme - still very graphical with a slight nod to vintage.

3. More blue, more flower, more vintage-feel with a shimmery detail.

4. Different flowers, more organic design. Heavier on the brown accents.

5. No blue at all - but eco friendly paper!

6. More vintage - these are called "field poppies" - awww!

7. Keeping with the blue - but instead a damask pattern...

8. Bolder, more graphical - but not sure how it would translate with brown accents.

9. Much more modern - another "shimmery" style paper.

10. A bit more understated, but would pair well with beadboard + brown accents.

I look forward to all y'all's perspective here. You know sometimes how you look at something so much you can't distinguish which you'd prefer anymore at all? That's where I'm at. I look and look and look, and think I have a preference. Then look again and think, nope - I HATE that one.

So please, weigh in. With an opinion or without - just give me a vote...



Saturday, November 27, 2010

Christmas in the Village

Santa apparently came to Brooklin last night - we went to join in the celebrations... except it was bloody freezing and Santa was expected to come "later"... which no one seemed to know exactly what time that was.

So we took our free Tim Horton's hot chocolate and left...


Friday, November 26, 2010

Never underestimate how much they listen to you...

Maddie: These carrots are mushy! I don't like these carrots!

Me: The carrots aren't mushy, they're fine. You like carrots - eat them up.

Maddie: NOOOOOOOO! They. Are. Mushy! I don't LIKE these carrots!

Me: Maddie! The carrots are FINE. Now stop it and eat some potatoes instead.

Grown up chat for a few minutes, whilst pointedly ignoring the whining and moaning of the 3 year old at the table because that's the only way she'll actually eat/try any of her food - arguing with this kid just doesn't work.

Maddie: Mumma.....

Me: What's up honey?

Maddie: I want more FINE carrots. Please have some more FINE carrots?

Me: ???? [then realizing a few minutes later she's responding to my "your carrots are fine" comments]: Oh right - yep... *scoops more carrots onto her plate* Here's some more FINE carrots. Mmmmm. Yummy. "Fine" carrots!

Maddie: MMMMmmmmmm! Yummy! I like FINE carrots Mumma!

Me: Yes boo, I know you do...


Maybe I'm not as important as I thought I was...

I left my Katiebear for a whole 7 hours today. I had a thing to do in the city, which required me to be without bebe - and so with the help of my mom and the Hubs - I left at 7:30 this morning and didn't return until after 2pm. I think I was stressed about 80% of the time I was away....

Yes I realize how much this makes me sound like a crazy newbie mom - and yet, I admit it because it's true.

I was stressed because she hasn't really taken a bottle as of yet, and all I could think about was how much she'd be crying and sobbing and starving the entire time. Oh - and missing me of course.

So what do you think I arrived home to (after driving 140km/hr across the 407 to get home in record time)?

Silence. Everyone (except my mom) asleep and happy(ish). Apparently Katie did scream a lot. But also had lots of happy moments. And apparently she didn't sleep much at all the entire morning. But she was asleep when I got home (and in fact is still asleep as I write this) (yes, I didn't go wake her up immediately) (yet) - and apparently she took 3 full ounces at one go. At around noon.

Which means she held out for over 4 hours hoping I would come rescue her.... and when she realized it wasn't happening, decided she was hungry enough to take a few ounces.

Don't get me wrong - this makes me happy. I'm glad she wasn't miserable the entire time. And I'm hoping this means she'll be more open to the occasional bottle.

But I also can't wait for her to wake up so I can give her lots of snuggles and tell her just how much I missed her.


Wednesday, November 24, 2010


I'd forgotten just how hard a baby makes getting anything done. Actually - as I write that, I realize that's not totally fair. Christmas 2007 Maddie was just a wee 2 month old. And they sleep. A LOT. They're also happy in pretty much anyone's arms. Which means getting a few consecutive hours here and there to decorate and bake and shop and do all the other stuff required to get ready for the holidays is not so difficult.

A 5 month old? Well, that's a bit of a different story. I got a lot of our indoor decorations up on Sunday (after the Hubs got home) - and the tree has been put up... but still not decorated. And my poor mantel sat half-decorated for several days.

It was making me itchy.

So... after everyone went to bed last night, I indulged in a little one-on-one time with my lovely mantel (it's a corner fireplace, meaning it's large and a bit awkwardly shaped and... just never get a corner fireplace - trust me).

But now I can rest easy that at least this one corner of the living room is DUN.

(Also, please ignore the stockings - I have PLANS y'all... which may involve crafting... or may involve spending some hard-earned $$ at the local craft show this weekend - we'll see...).

In the meantime though.... twinkly lights!
And yes, clementines are a perfectly acceptable form of holiday trim - 
in fact, at Casa Vallier we call them Christmas Oranges!


Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Five Months

Dear Katie,

5 months. We're almost half-way there baby! What is there to say about this month? You're awesome. You have so much patience (I think I could learn a thing or two) - you watch me make dinner, you watch me check emails, you watch me play with your sister - as long as you're in the thick of it, you're a happy camper.

The sleep continues to be up and down - some nights you give us the 8 hour stretch, other nights (more recently) it's been an every-two-hour thing. Growth spurts, colds/congestion - they've all been working against us. If I'm to be honest though - I don't mind the early morning wake-ups - the 4am snuggles back in my bed. I danced the same slow dance with your sister against everyone's advice and I'd never ever give up those sleepy nursing cuddles. That's our time - when everyone else is still sleeping and we're both half awake and snuggly.

But with all that eating has come the chunk.

Oh the baby chunk - your legs have those rolls that just keep going and going and going. And forget about a wrist - you have a crease instead. I love nom-nom-nom'ing your cheeks and feet and pretty much every part of you - and you (of course) find this hilarious. You smile and let out one of your treasured hehhhhhh's - the rare low-voiced giggle that we can go for days without hearing. You're one tough crowd missy - and it's never the same thing twice that makes you laugh. Don't worry - I'll continue to work for it. Cuz I'm the funny one, and that's my thing okay?

The best part of a good giggle (or even big smile) is your dimple. As your cheek gets plumper it gets more and more pronounced and I love it. We have no idea where you got it - not a single dimple on either of us - but you have one smack dab in the middle of your left cheek and it's freaking adorable!

Milestone of the month? You started with the hanging bouncy chair thing - you like it fine, but will only really bounce if someone's watching you. Show off...

Another milestone I wish we could check off is your starting to take a bottle - but alas you continue to fight it. I've finally found a bottle that you don't scream about - but you just chew on it and look at me like, "Seriously? Are you still trying this shit with me?" I'm leaving for the better part of 8 hours on Friday - you're gonna be hanging with Daddy and Bucky - be nice to them, okay? Or at least, try not to scream too much.

"Okay lady, I guess we're doing this photo thing again, huh?"

"Wait! What is that cool jingly thing you're waving madly above your head?"

"Damn lady - you be heeee-larious!"

"Okay, I'm over this photography session and gonna start wrecking the place..."

Love you my little Katiebear.... my Kates... my snugglerumpskin... my bugalootwo.


Monday, November 22, 2010

Our new tradition

I could wail and whinge on about the tough tough extra super hard weekend I just had being single-mom to two RASCALS who didn't give me a moment's peace... but I think I've done enough whingeing this month, non?

So instead I'll give you the cheery bits - I jumped the gun and broke my mom's rule about decorating before the first weekend of December - screw it - I love Christmas. I love the music. I love the decorations. The twinkly lights and yummy cinnamon scented pine cones. I love Christmas baking. I LUUUUUUURVE shortbread (especially my ultra yummy melt-in-your mouth church-lady recipe that I should get around to posting about some day). So our tree is up (well, partially, waiting until tonight to actually dress it). Most of my doo-dads are up around the house, and the mantle will be dressed up after a quick trip to the local Supercentre for some fresh cedar.

Maddie also LOVES Christmas. "I love your decorations Mumma!" is what I heard about five trillion times yesterday. Which? CUTE - right?

She wasn't so much into the actual decorating as she was in running around all sugar-high and happy about the transformation of our living room. "Santa's coming!!!!!!" she'd scream. I tried my best to explain that he wasn't coming tomorrow or anything. It didn't matter. She's All. About. Santa.

So after dinner, once the Hubs was home and fully doing his part in assuming all child-rearing responsibilities for the evening, I thought - this is a great time to introduce our new tradition!

The Elf on the Shelf.

I ran across this adorable thing during my recent shopping bonanza at Chapters. It's a little toy elf doll that sits and watches down over your child and reports back to Santa nightly on their good (or bad) behaviour. He's magical - so you can't touch him or he'll lose his magic and won't be able to report back to Santa. Oh - and he's in a different spot every morning (because of his nightly trip to the North Pole of course!).

So not only can we totally use this as a "be good - the Elf is watching" behaviour-check, but it's also fun for Maddie every morning to come down and look for where the little Elf is watching from today. It comes with a story book about this new little Elf and all the "rules" that comes with him - it reads very lyrically and is beautifully illustrated. Oh and at the end of the book you name your new Elf and commemorate when your family adopted the tradition. Such an ingenious idea!

We named him "Rocky"


I wasn't compensated in any way for this glowing recommendation - it's just something we bought and love...

Friday, November 12, 2010

The Good, The Bad and The Ugh....

The Good:

  • Katie is back to sleeping 8 hour chunks at night. She did a little stint there where she was waking up at 11ish and then every 3 hours after. It's mind-blowing that I actually did that almost every night with Maddie for 1.5 years. Fuckme I was insane..
  • Yesterday was Rememberance Day which is the official date by which I cannot start decorating for Christmas before ... and now I have the all-clear! Our house will slowly be Christmas-fied over the next couple of weeks and I can almost smell the cinnamon sprinkles on my gingerbread Starbucks latte.
  • Along with the holiday decorating I have two very cool projects percolating in my noggin' - nothing earth shattering or ground breaking, but if either turn our half as good as I envision them, I'll be happy to sharesies some pics with yous.
  • Maddie's really into playing dollies these days and so my background noise daily is now the chitter-chatter of various personalities while they argue or dance or play tag or get ready for the big ball. Invariably there's something said that makes me smile and I keep meaning to get it on video so I can post for the world to see and embarrass Maddie's future 15-year-old self. As Maddie tells me daily, "Mommy - I'm usin' my 'magination!"
  • We're spending this weekend at my in-laws new house on the lake. The Hubs helped them move a few weeks ago and is beyond excited to get Maddie out on the dock with her new Barbie fishing rod. I foresee me drinking copious amounts of hot chocolate inside while I attempt to start reading my new book purchase (the new Jane Green - nothing groundbreaking or mindbusting, but enjoyable for this nursing mother who is grasping onto her last few brain cells with all hands).
The Bad:
  • Maddie is slowly, deliberately instituting a new practice of torture in the way of the "I have no ears, I am deaf to all requests for rationality. I will only SHOUT all my DEMANDS at you UNTIL YOU COMPLY". She has broken us. I can only aim to please during these tirades.
  • Katie's still fighting the bottle like the bull-headed little monkey that she is. I finally found that the Playtex drop-in bottles with latex nipple won't make her scream and cry in protest, but she still just chews around on it and looks at me with disgust. Unfortunately (for her) she gets her bullheadedness from me, so we dance this two-step daily. But yeah, she's winning... for now.
The Ugh:
  • Our furnace starting making a weird smell last night - like that burny smell your hair dryer makes right before it stops working. So we turned it off and lived in a 65 degree house for 18 hours until the technician could come take a look. Turns out a dirty air filter can cause your furnace to overheat and burn shit up and make a weird smelly smell. Air filters are the Hubs' department - so he owes me $66.67. I will take it in foot massages... (I realize this is actually good news, because buh - furnace fixing fees are not in our budget right now - like, AT ALL - so yay to the under $100 fee to find out we're lazy morons. YAY!)

Toddler book-shopping

I recently took advantage of a "mom's night out" sale at the local Chapters - as frugal as I am, there is nothing better to me than a brand-new book. Stiff spines. That new book smell you get. And since I'm a re-reader of novels, I so don't feel guilty buying a new book for my "library".

But this isn't about shopping for me.

(Well, I did buy one for me - but just ONE)

The rest of my purchases were for the girls. $200 worth. (And that's with the 25% discount).

(Yes, we like our books)

But this isn't about my book-shopping habits or trying to justify the amount I spend on books... It's a shout-out to all my fantabulous friends on Facebook who gave me so many suggestions and new authors to take a look at.

You see, aside from the odd book here and there, Maddie has been making do with her current bookstash that essentially hasn't changed since she was a baby. That's not to say all her books are baby books - she was given a shedload of Disney Golden Books in her first year. And Dr. Seuss. And some Curious George. And let's not forget the recent Princess book obsession.

So she's good - but her bookcase is getting mighty full. And with her new fondness of the longer stories (that's not to say we don't break out a Sandra Boynton "Going to Bed" book for old times' sake every once in a while) - but I'm getting a bit sick of Disney stories. Especially the roster of Cinderella, Peter Pan and Snow White that she favours. Because really? There's only so much Disney you can take.

And so I picked up some Jillian JiggsAlexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day, Each Peach Pear Plum and yes, another Disney Princess book.

Of course, Katie wasn't left out - she got a new Karen Katz, I Love You More, Ten Little Fingers & Ten Little ToesGoodnight Moon (yes SHOCKINGLY we didn't have it) and several others.

But thanks to all the reco's I received, there are so many more I'm excited to look for now:

  • The Pirate & The Penguin by Patricia Storms
  • 10 Big Toes & A Prince's Nose by Nancy Gow
  • The Gruffalo by Julia Donaldson
  • Lost and Found by Oliver Jeffers
  • Where the Sidewalk Ends by Shel Silverstein
  • Don't Let the Pigeon Drive the Bus by Mo Willems
  • Barnyard Collection by Doreen Cronin
  • Fancy Nancy by Jane O'Connor
  • And of COURSE some more Robert Munsch - too many to list...
I love the simplicity and sweetness of the board books but oh, the memories some of the toddler books give me. I practically well up when I read her my old "Monster at the end of this book". And as I looked at the Robert Munsch titles in the bookstore I swear I could smell my old school library. I was such a little reader as a kid - I loved getting to pick out books in that half hour or whatever it was they would give us. And I swear that's when my compulsive shopping habits began, because I would just pile books high into a pile and check out the maximum amount every time because I could never decide on just one. 

So yes, baby books are fun. Toddler books are exciting. I can't wait to give both my girls their Christmas stockings this year...


Monday, November 8, 2010

You might want to work on the bluffing...

20 minutes after I put Maddie down for her afternoon nap...

*boing*boing*boing* <--this is the sound of someone jumping on her bed

Me [busting into her room like a narc cop in a highschool girls washroom]: WHAT are you doing?

Maddie [sitting down quickly with wide innocent bambi eyes]: Nothing Mommy ... [silence] ... I was just bouncing on the bed.

Something tells me she's not going to be a world poker champion anytime soon.


The new Santa rules

Last year's Christmas was a little less fun than we'd like it to be. With us all fighting holiday colds (well, the Hubs failing the fight and managing to catch pneumonia), me being first trimester pregnant (tired, hormonal and nauseous) and about one TRILLION presents under the tree - it was a hard day. So hard in fact, that we had to take a break from opening presents. Yes, you heard me. Take.A.Break. It was the glazed look on Maddie's face while unwrapping and her zero enthusiasm over the gifts that gave us a clue that she might be just A BIT overstimulated.

So after about a million meltdowns (on all our parts) and a living room that looked like a Toys R Us exploded in it, we took stock and decided to institute some new present-giving "rules" this year. And don't worry, the grandparents have been well notified, so it's not like I'm breaking the news to them on this blog!

Main rule? Each child can receive no more than ONE toy from each set of grandparents. Books, clothes or donations to their RESP's - well, have at it. But actual play-toys? Limit is one. If the limit is exceeded? Then extra toys will be promptly donated to the local toy drive.

It's not about being scroogy on our parts - it really is about the amount of toys that we have in our house already. (Oh, I know there are parents out there reading this, thinking HELL YA!) I actually look around and am at a bit of a loss as to what we're even going to get the girls this year. They have so much - which is a great, wonderful, first-world complaint to have - I KNOW.

But this brings me to the point of our new rules - it has to stop somewhere, right? I really don't want the expectation of that kind of...err... materialistic debauchery every Christmas - because, whoa -- it's just too much.

And so... the new Santa rules are born. We'll see how it goes. Both my mom and the Gramma V have skirted the rules by giving Maddie a few toys "just because" recently.

Of course they have, right?


Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Snapshot of my day

As I sit down to write this I listen to Maddie running around behind me, playing "dollies". She has an Ariel and a Belle doll who seem to fight constantly, while she plays referee and doles out time-outs like candy - is this a foreshadowing of my future?

Katie slumbers upstairs in her crib - I listen to her breathing over the monitor (I make snorers) - the steady white noise of it punctuated every little while with a sleepy cry. I look up and listen to see if the cries will turn into anything - they don't (this time) and she falls back to sleep. Maddie stops playing long enough to tell me, "I don't think Katie's awake yet Mommy."

I am doing errands (well... and blogging - but "documenting our lives" as I like to call it is sort of an errand too) - banking, grocery lists, checking emails. My life is on my laptop. And usually around 5pm it can be found open on my kitchen counter, with either a recipe site or my Google Reader up. I read while I cook - dangerous stuff, especially for an accident-prone cook.

In my head a running list of "to-do's" cycle through. I ponder the dining room table, piled high with stuff. Stocking stuffers and Christmas decorations haphazardly hidden in reusable bags from my craft show shopping last weekend. Halloween decorations and costume makeup that needs to be put away in the basement to be used again next year. More Rubbermaid bins gets added to my shopping list.

Maddie pushes her kitchen stool over the counter where her Halloween candy bag is sitting. She thinks it's funny to "sneak" candy and I don't have the heart to tell her that she's not really "sneaking" if she's doing it while I'm standing right here. This is her fourth piece of candy since she woke up from her nap - I know I'm going to pay for it tonight when she experiences the sugar crash but I'm also just wanting her to blow through it as quickly as possible, so it's finally gone.

Dinner tonight will consist of reheated leftovers. A lazy mom's dinner, but when the Hubs is at a work event until 8:30 I look for short-cuts to survive the single-parent-stress. Maddie pushes her stool over to "help" me dole out the servings and rice goes everywhere. It's times like these I wish for a dog.


Tuesday, November 2, 2010

No YOU'RE a princess...

Halloween afternoon was (as always) a rush of pumpkin-carving / dinner-making / final-costume-touch-up-making. I've already promised myself that next year will be an "order pizza for dinner + get Timmies for the walk" kind of night.

Maddie loved the pumpkin carving even less this year than she did last year..
This is called "look of disgust".

Her princess outfit - before it got covered up with her winter jacket. Oh Canada!

The traditional shot of her walking with Daddy

This house deserved it's own photo - see that scary freaky lady on the right? She's an animatronic scary zombie witch who pops out every few minutes. Yikes...

BFF L with her little one (who is keeping one eye on the scary zombie witch)


And in case you're wondering what little K is up to...
Well, guess who learned to bounce! this weekend?