Thursday, September 30, 2010

Friday Funnies (on Thursday)

My little man, he's funny.  He doesn't mean to be funny, doesn't do it on purpose, doesn't even know how funny he is.

I often post his funnies as my facebook status and I have had some people suggest I should be writing them down as keepsakes.

So yesterday, I went through all my facebook status updates ever (it was a long process, I don't recommend it) and wrote them all down.

But I'm horrible about keeping scrapbooks and note pads, so I thought I'd put them here.

Sit back, relax and enjoy.  These are in no particular order.

"Mommy, I have to poop.  You wanna come watch?"


"Mommy, you aren't listening!!!"
"Sorry Monkey, I was reading a letter.  What did you need?"
"I need my water bottle"
"Ok, I'll be right there"
(Monkey walks off in a huff) "I swear to God no one listens to me in this house" 


" Mama, my tummy hurts."
"Ok, drink some water.  Here you go."
"Uh, no Mama.  I need some chocolate from my window (advent calendar). Only chocolate can make my tummy feel ALLLLLLLLLL better! (huge grin on his face).  Go get me one Mama!  It is up there."


"Little Lady, you don't eat paper!  Them made from trees and if you eat trees then a tree will grow in you like a seed.  (pauses to think) Then you have sticks and leaves out your ears and you look like a tree. (looks in her ears) Maybe we can have a bird them!  You can sit on the balcony!  Mommy!!!!! (I always tell him that birds belong in trees and not in cages and that is why we can't have a bird as a pet)


Monkey to 10 month old his sister, who was playing with some of his CARS toys "Little lady, you can't have these.  You still too whittle.  But when you get bigger, you can play with them.  Well, maybe not, but you can play with my other toys.  Well, maybe not either.  I know!  You can ask Santa for some toys. Hold on, I'll get you a pencil."


I gave Monkey a hug and told him I loved him.  He looks at me with a big smile and says "Mama, I love my bulldozer.  Look at the wheels, aren't they beautiful!?"


After checking himself out in the bathroom mirror, he turns to me and says "Hey Mama!  I'm pretty handsome today!"


 "Mana, I want to make this truck" (shows me a megabloks picture)
"We don't have that one Monkey."
"Dat's okay Mama, we can ask Santa for it!"
"Oh, Santa won't be coming for a long while yet."
Monkey stops to think... "That's ok Mama, you call him and tell him to come tomorrow.He can have breakfast with me!!!! (passes me the phone) Call him.  And tell him to pack his jammies... and a toothbrush!"


"Mama, my stomach hurts.  Can I have a band-aid please?"


Monkey is walking around the house with a box on his head saying "Take me to your leader" over and over again.


"Good job peeing Mama!  Here, you get a Smartie!!!  What colour to do you want?"


I just told Monkey that he has ants in his pants.  Now he is all worried and won't put his shorts back on.  He keeps on picking them up and looking in them, looking for the ants.


While listening to Johnny Cash, Monkey walks up to the speaker and listens for a while.  "Mommy, I think this singer has a cold.  His voice is all grumbly."


Monkey is sitting on the couch at the top of his lungs, holding his ears shut. When I asked him why he was holding his ears he said, "Mommy, I singing too loud. It hurts my ears!". He then continued to sign even louder.

Monkey just came up to me and said "Mommy, I'm very frustrated! This puzzle is NOT behaving and if it doesn't start soon, I'm putting it back in the box!" Exit frustrated little man stomping his feet.


 After a visit to a farm where all the chickens had names, we came home and started making dinner, chicken burgers. When my husband came home and asked what was for dinner, Monkey man says "Penny!" (one of the chicken's names).


Wednesday, September 29, 2010

One Thousand Words

HA! This is one of my new favourite pictures of my little lady.


I wonder what she was thinking...

Captions anyone????

Tuesday, September 28, 2010


I've got a lot of things going on so I thought I would update in this entry.

1. My resolutions are so far going ok.  I spent the remainder of September making sure to do at least 15 minutes of exercise in each day.  We also started walking with the family each day after dinner until just before bed time.  The kids have really enjoyed this and it really makes those sometimes long hours between dinner and bedtime go so much faster.
Next up for October (I can NOT believe October is knocking on our door already!), I'm tracking all my exercise on a calendar.  My goal is to do 20 minutes four days a week, with one session of resistance training.  And we will continue our nightly walks.

I have been cooking pretty much every night, except when we are up north.  We don't have a kitchen up there so we are at the mercy of mother nature.  There have been a few weekends that it has been pouring rain so we have gone in to town to grab a bite.  But otherwise, I've been cooking each and every night and am LOVING it.

2. A few days ago I was on my soapbox about how you should always do things that you love to do, no matter the circumstances.  I challenged my readers to pick something they want to do, used to do or enjoy doing but don't have the time anymore, and just do it.
Here is what I have been doing.
My  monkey man and I have been baking once a week, some times twice.  I love to bake, he loves to bake, yet I'm always putting it off.  My little guy is in seventh heaven.  He is even learning some pre-math skills to boot while following recipes.
This is what he made today: 
Sugar cookies decorated to. the. MAX.  Go big or go home people.  It's all about the presentation.

I have also started a project that I've been putting off since my little man's first Christmas.  Every year I tell him a story that involves Gilbert, a mouse who lives in the woods.  Through the years, he has asked to hear these stories over again at night time, so I wanted to make a book for him with the stories in them.  But I can't draw to save my life, so I've been putting it off.
I recently started needlework again and came up with the idea to create each picture with a collage of different materials and have Gilbert out of felt with some needlework for detail.  So this is what I have started as my challenge.  I'll continue to update as I make the actual collages.

Here is Gilbert.  He has no face yet, but he will.

3.  The kids toys are slowly getting organized.  I'll be truthful and say I haven't done anything since the last picture update.  I'm at a stand still because I'm waiting for some shelves to be brought up for the basement.  Good thing I'm not holding my breath. 

4. The year long challenge for sweet organization: I'll be tackling the shed next.  I'm scared.  It is a jungle in there.

I think that is everything I need to update. I'm going to try and update once a month or so, just to stay accountable.

In other news, I discovered a nifty way of keeping all those decorating sprinkles for making a mess of everything.
Line a muffin tin with muffin liners,

and when you are done you can just lift the liners out, bend them a bit and pour the sprinkles right back in to their container!

I know.  Smart.  I try.


Monday, September 27, 2010

Worry Wart

I happened to run across an episode of Hoarders: Buried Alive today.  I  never watch these shows because I start to compare behaviours of my family members to the people on the show.

My mom, she still has our baby clothes stacked in rubbermaid bins in the basement.

My father in law has tools and old furniture and pieces of wood filling both his house garage and his cottage garage.  Because you never know when you might need them.

My sister keeps magazines.  Lots of magazines.  Mostly Martha Stewart ones, with recipes and crafts she says she will reference. I don't know if she has ever actually referenced them.

Me... well, lets not talk about me.  I'm a work in progress.

Mostly though, I look at my kids.  My monkey man in particular.

He does this: (notice the line of toys in front of him?)

and it sometimes worries me.

He loves to build what he calls "gates" out of the toys he is playing with.  He needs a gate when he plays.  It started because our dog kept on stepping on his toys and he built a gate across the doorway to keep her out.  And then it became a regular thing. Sometimes they are much smaller, confining him to a square foot or less of space.  Sometimes they are bigger.  Depends what kind of a mood he is in.

It worries me even though I know it shouldn't.  Especially since I have a diploma in early childhood education behind me.  Especially since I have worked with kids for over 10 year now.

It also worries me that I can't keep a pair of pants on this kid to save my life.  Seriously, it is chilly here and still he insists on taking off his pants and just wear his underwear and top.  And socks.  He needs socks too.

People tell me I worry too much.  But at least if I worry, I will be prepared.  That is how I think of it anyway.
Plus, I tried to stop once, and I worried that I was too relaxed.

So I stopped.

See? I'm a lost cause.

On a happier note, this is what my monkey man took a picture of first thing this morning.  I love it.



Sunday, September 26, 2010


This is what my monkey man is doing right now.

He was dressed this morning, but asked to put his pajamas back on.  I should have know something was up. 

And my little lady, she's doing it too.

Sorry about the "Silence of the Lambs" type picture. I had to take it through her monitor because the last time I tried to take a picture while she was sleeping, I work her up.  And then she was a big crank for the rest of the day.  So I spared us all the misery.

And this?  This is what my husband is doing.

 Obviously I missed the memo circulating through my family about the afternoon naps that were planned.

But I'm really enjoying the quiet.



Saturday, September 25, 2010

Storing Art

I've recently noticed that I need to create a permanent storage system for all of my little man's art work.  Since he was about two and a half he has been actually drawing things, and here or there, he has made some pretty cute stuff.

I tend to be a bit of a hoarder when it comes to things he has created.  My mom had bins for my sister and I and I recently went through mine and laughed hysterically for about 2 hours as I dug out my creations for elementary school.  I found stories that I had written, cards that I made for my parents, pictures painted in kindergarten and my favourite, a note book journal from grade two.  The things I wrote were hilarious.

I want my monkey to have the option of reliving these memories.  I want him to laugh for 2 hours because of the size of his dad's ears on a portrait drawn when he was 3.

But the papers are starting to take over my computer table, fridge, bulletin board and bathroom door (don't ask) .  So I need to start a system.

I've found a lot of advice online.

One really neat idea was to take pictures of all the art work and put them into a photo album.  But I want the originals.  I'm selfish like that.

Another idea was to keep one picture each month, frame it and hang it on your wall creating an art gallery.  At the beginning of each year you switch out last January's picture. But we live in a small house and don't have enough wall space for that.  We'd be done after a few months.  And while I know we could switch them out, I think that only one creation a month is a little on the thin side.  My little man draws almost every day.  I know I wouldn't be able to just pick one from a month.

Another great idea was to create a scrap book with all the favourites, adding text to remind me what the circumstances were around that particular art work.  I can tell you right now that would be good for the first few, but in the end I'd just start stuffing them in there.

I know my limits.

So I have decided to get a bankers box and fill it with file folders to divide each year's work.  I always date and name the pictures he draws, so I thought this was the easiest way for me to keep them.  Plus I have a spot on the shelves in his room to put the box.

And really, this is the option that requires the least amount of work.

And like I said before.

I know my limits.


Thursday, September 23, 2010


My monkey man has been very interested in drawing and printing these days.

Here is are two of his most recent works of art, portraits of little lady.

In this one she is doing a somersault.  That is why her feet are coming out of her head. Just so you know.

When he does these drawings, he gets his little notebook, sits near my little lady and starts to draw, looking at her frequently and then back to his work.  He really focuses.

This post brought to you by the letter A.

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

All You Need Is Love

I got feedback today asking me if I really actually like staying at home, or if I was just trying to make it seem like I do, putting on a brave face. And how do I know if I like it when I haven't worked out of the house in four years.

I will answer that here.

I am a firm believer in you have to love what you do. Whether you are a teacher, a real estate agent, a lawyer or a plumber, I really feel that in order to be fulfilled with what you do, you need to love it.

I love staying home with my kids, I love caring for my family, and I really do love keeping our home. That last one is new. I used to hate it. And I was always honest about the fact.

And I will be honest again, I don't love housework. I still hate it. There is nothing nice about toilets, kitty litter, dishes or dust bunnies.

What I love is the fact that I am creating a space for my family that is positive, calm and free of dust tumbleweed.

So no, I don't like housework, but I have developed an indifference to it. No point is griping about something I can't change.

I really do love what I do. I know there are some people that cannot feel fulfilled staying at home with the kids and taking care of the family, but I can truly and honestly say that I feel totally fulfilled.

And I do have work outside of the house as well. Three times a month I have to leave my home and supervise students who are out on field placement through our local college. These outings only prove to me even more that I love being at home with my family.

And who wouldn't want to see this every day!


Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Five Things I Just Don't Get

1. Low rise jeans. Really, I don't need to see your bottom, thank you. What really cracks me up (no pun intended) is that they started making t shirts longer so they cover up the low rise jeans crack. So now it not only takes me forever to find a pair of jeans that covers my bottom, but all these long t shirts look like dresses on my 5'3" body.

2. I used to be 5'4". I'm going to be an umpa lompa by the time I'm 50.

3. This:

This is a pile of my husband's clothes. On top of a folded laundry hamper.

4. This:

I don't know why he has a toilet seat on his head. I just took the picture.

5. What is all this fuss over Edward from the Twilight series. Seriously, Jacob, he is what all the fuss should be about. Edward is all white and pastey and well... dead. Jacob, he is just SO not.

Yes, I realize this was a movie made for teenagers.

I know.


Monday, September 20, 2010

The Waiting Game

I think a lot of society gets caught up in the waiting game.

We wait to do things until other things fall in to place.

We keep clothes because we are going to lose weight some day and hope to fit in to them again.

We don't clean the car because there is one more weekend trip to take that is going to mess it up again anyway.

We wait to start learning a new skill because we don't have the money for lessons.

We put off doing things we love because there just isn't enough time in the day.

We postpone spending quality time with our significant others because the kids are still too young, they need us to much.

We don't go to the gym because we need to lost weight first to feel comfortable there.

That one is mine, and one of my personal favourites. Seriously, you can't beat that mentality.

Since the start of this year long adventure I have noticed a switch in my mind set.

I'm no longer waiting for things to happen before I allow my life to change. I don't set the standard of only being able to do things if everything else is perfect.

Life is never going to be perfect.

There are always going to be obstacles of one kind or another.

There are always going to be kids waking me up at night, meals that need to be cooked, toilets that need to be scrubbed and rolls of flubber that don't fit in to jeans from my 20s.

At least in my life there are.

Especially the jeans bit. Good golly these babies have taken a toll on my mid section!

Regardless of what your obstacles are, I encourage you to look at them and see what you are missing in your life.

What are you holding on to that is actually holding you back?

I have a challenge for you:

This week, do something that you have been putting off because the conditions just weren't right.

Start learning a new skill, even if you just scrape the top. At least you took steps toward learning it.

Do something you love doing, even if it is just for a few minutes.

In the wise words of Nike,

Just do it.




PS, don't forget to come back here and share what you have done this week! I'd love to know what everyone is doing...

Sunday, September 19, 2010

My Weekly Schedule

Since the beginning of this adventure, my weekly schedule has been a living document. It changed frequently because our schedule was changing frequently.

Now that my youngest has a proper napping schedule though, things have evened out and it has made cleaning a lot easier. I take a chunk of time in the afternoon right after she goes down and right before my rear end hits the couch in exhaustion.

I have broken everything down to 20 minute chunks that I do three times a week. I haven't created specific days for each chore. I have discovered I don't like to be told what to do and when, even by me. So I know what has to be done during the week and just make sure it is done by Friday afternoon. The weekends are off limits except for daily clean up.

Here are the three 20 minute sessions I do each week.

1. Bathroom wipe down, bath and toilet scrub, kitty litter change and vacuum/mop floor.

2. Dust everything that stands still with a damp cloth, organize any papers that might have accumulated on dining room table

3. Put clothes away, change sheets, take hampers to basement.

Daily chores

Clean and wipe down kitchen, vacuum living and dining rooms, mop dining room if necessary, mop kitchen, wipe down bathroom counter and faucets.

This schedule has kept everything clean enough that there is no more scrubbing involved so all tasks go pretty quickly. When I started this I felt like all I was doing was cleaning. I thought cleaning was all I was going to be doing ever again.

And then things started to change and everything got easier.

For those of you who are just starting out, it does get easier. Once things are organized and well cleaned, it is all about maintenance, which is a piece of cake!

Just always remember how much work you went through to get to this point. That horrid memory alone should be enough to keep you cleaning each week.


Saturday, September 18, 2010

Five Things To Do

Say you just found out people are coming over.

And say that your house is a mess.

And say that you are embarrassed at the state of your house and you don't want people to see what your house really looks like.

(This is all hypothetical, of course, because my house is always immaculate)

Here are five things you can do to make your house look tidy.

1. Fluff the couch cushions, straighten them, flip them if needed.

2. Give a quick vacuum of the main floors and carpets in the house (just seeing the vacuum trails on the carpets will make people think everything is always nice and tidy)

3. Wipe down your bathroom sink and faucet. It really makes a difference.

4. Stack all magazines and papers. It doesn't matter where you stack them, just stack them. Looks better than having the scattered all over the house

5. Put lemon slices in a bowl of water and stick them in the microwave for 5 minutes OR get a spray bottle and fill half with water and the other with vinegar and spray in the air. Both will get rid of any lingering smells from cooking or wet dogs.

Presto! Your house look presentable and smells nice. You don't have to hang your head in shame!


Friday, September 17, 2010

Taking the Plunge

There is something new in our home.

It came in this fancy box

It has many buttons. More than I know what to do with. Most of which I feel are there just to mock me.

Isn't it pretty?

I think it's laughing at me.

Someone called me this afternoon.

It took me until ring 652 to realize it was my phone. And then they were gone.




Did you hear that?




I'm putting it back in the box until I'm more equipped to deal with this.

If you don't hear from me soon, please send help.


Thursday, September 16, 2010

New Friends and Progress Pictures

Yesterday, after I posted about our trip to see the donkeys, I emailed the Donkey Sanctuary to let them know about the post and to ask them a few questions about our trip.

Kim was nice enough to email me back with all the information I requested, as well as the names of all the donkeys that were in the pictures. So I wanted to share with you the names of our new family friends.

This is Amigo. He seemed like such a shy guy and just peeked at us while we were brushing and loving Summer. When we approached him he would tap his feet (a sign they are nervous) so we just let him watch.

This is Tibet. She was so calm and let us come up to her while she was resting and pet and talk to her. She is such a sweetheart.

Angus was on the field side of the fence. Andrea took this picture and I just love it. He looks so content looking across the field at all his friends.

THIS is Summer. This little lady totally won our hearts over. Especially my little man. We started talking to her and brushing her and when my little man wanted to move on, she followed us where ever we went, wanting more. I think little man could have stayed there all day brushing her side. I think Summer would have stuck around as well!

This is a mother daughter pair, Speckle and Juanita (who has the fly mask on). I took a picture of these two because when Alexander saw them he excitedly said "Mama, look! The donkeys are hugging! They love each other!" And it does look like they are hugging, doesn't it?

This is Earl Grey. He was itchy! He spent a lot of our time there at the feeding trough, so we didn't get to know him too well.

Those are our new friends, as my little man calls them. He poured over these pictures all day today, talking non-stop about his visit with the Donkeys. Needless to say, we'll be visiting again soon!

In case you missed it yesterday, here is the link to The Donkey Sanctuary of Canada .


To keep you updated on the toy clean up that is currently going on in my living and dining rooms, here are some pictures. If you missed the before pictures visit this blog entry

I have to admit, all the books that were on this shelving unit are currently in a big laundry hamper. I haven't figured out what to do with them yet, but their removal makes such a huge difference in how the space looks (even though it is still a huge mess).

This still looks like a bit of a disaster, but what is in the bins is finally organized. Plus, I moved the bins with the toys the kids play with often in to this shelf so they don't have to drag them through the two rooms.

I have finally labeled all of the bins so everyone knows what goes where. Funny thing, little man pays no attention to them what so ever, but when my husband saw them, he was very happy. Now I can't complain about him just stuffing the toys where ever they fit.

I had these big plans to take pictures of the contents of each bin, print the out, laminate them and stick them on each bin with velcro.

Then reality hit and I grabbed some sticky notes, a pen and some tape and drew my own pictures.

This was a real big thing for me. Usually the big task of getting the real pictures and making them look all pretty would have been enough for me to stall and procrastinate this job away. I didn't realize this until I had finished labeling. And while it doesn't look all that pretty, it is functional. In the real world (and at nine o'clock at night when I'm putting the toys away), that is all that matters.


Wednesday, September 15, 2010

The Donkey Sanctuary

We went to a very special place today. A very special place.


It is called the Donkey Sanctuary of Canada, located in Guelph, Ontario. They rescue abused or neglected donkeys, as well as donkeys who have owners who no longer want them or can no longer care for them. They take these donkeys in and keep them at their wonderful farm.


It is a Donkey Haven.


It is also a place for people to visit and not only enjoy the company of some very sweet donkeys, but to learn about these extraordinary animals.


While you are there, you are permitted to wander through the barn and barn yard, brush the donkeys, tickle them behind the ears, talk to them and love them.


They teach you a few guidelines when you walk in the sanctuary, such as approach a donkey from the side so they can see you, talk so they can hear you, and never ever stand behind a donkey.


They have great volunteers that have a expansive knowledge base, can tell you stories about pretty much each donkey and oooze love for each and every one of them. You can tell they enjoy spending their time at the farm.

Please take the time to look at their website:

Check out the different donkeys and their bios, read about the organization and take a look at the education section with printable information for different age groups.

Pass this website on to other animal lovers. It raises awareness, and that is such an important part of what they do.

I'm going to go dream about donkeys now.