Wednesday, December 31, 2008


It's a small tradition, and a new-ish tradition, but we eat Chinese food every new year's eve together. Until the bits are older we probably won't really do any NYE celebrating, but this is something special for us to enjoy together.

Tuesday, December 30, 2008

More family fun - this time a birthday

My eldest nephew turns 25 on Jan 3, but we celebrated his birthday today because it's his last day in town. He lives in the states, and this is the first time I've seen him in 8 years! He's changed :)

Monday, December 29, 2008

Hairdresser to the stars

James, Katie and Jonah were playing hairdresser (which thankfully only involved the spray water bottles from the Pixos set instead of scissors or other scary things). James styled Jonah into a faux-hawk, then took this picture. I love how his eyes are almost exactly the same colour as my sweater behind him!

Sunday, December 28, 2008

Show me the coffee!

Yes, I'm still obsessing about my under-filled cups of cappuccino. This Tim Horton's is close to my parents house, 4 hours from the various Tim's that I generally complain about. Obviously a chain-wide issue...

Saturday, December 27, 2008

Where a kid can be a kid...

We had a few hours to spare today while my parents were working (and my brother and his wife had to rush home), so we had lunch at Chuck E Cheese. Decent pizza, and ski-ball, my favourite game ever!

Friday, December 26, 2008

Boxing Day

Spent boxing day with my family (well, and driving 4 hours to get to my family). My brother and sister-in-law played Monopoly (monotony) with my kids. Not my favourite board game but they had fun, then we had a big dinner and tons of presents.

Thursday, December 25, 2008

Merry Christmas

The stockings are stuffed, the gifts under the tree and I am beat. Merry Christmas my dear friends.

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

T'was the day of the night before Christmas

Daycare was closed today, so I brought the bits first to my office, where there were crafts and snacks set up in the boardroom (and even a visit from one of Santa's elves with some little presents for the good kids, but none for the bad employees :) ) We left there around 11:30 and headed for C's work. He couldn't leave until 12:30, but there were tons of things for the kids to do at his office complex while we waited - balloon animal making clowns, face painting elves, crafts, juggling demos and a very nice looking Santa (who we didn't visit, but I got a huge laugh at the kids with full spiderman face paintings sitting on his lap for a nice portrait!). The kids had a blast getting small designs painted on their cheeks, playing with their balloon animals, and learning to balance on boards over top of cylinders (be still my heart).

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Scratch one off the bucket list

Making a quilt has been on my 'list of things to do before I die' for years, to the bemusement of some of my friends. Finally (and largely because of some fabulous frog fabric) I decided to bite the bullet and try making one. I've been reading this blog for a couple of months, and darnit she made it seem doable. So... I sketched out a rough pattern, basically a bunch of 'nine patches' alternating with solid blocks, and sewed it up. I can't sew straight to save my life, and surely it'd be easier to sew a 1/4 inch seam allowance if I knew what a quarter inch looked like (you people can't just call it a 5mm allowance???) but the end result, while far, far, far from technically perfect, is pretty darned cool! I quilted it by stitching the ditch of the big seams, then diagonally along the big blocks and coloured little blocks. I even bound it, though the binding really sucks. In all I am fabulously pleased with myself. It's a lap quilt size more or less, measuring about 48 x 60, and features tons of different frog fabrics, perfect (hopefully) for my frog-loving father in law to use as his naptime blankie :)

Monday, December 22, 2008

Gingerbread house

Two little monkeys with their gingerbread house. Constructed from a kit, but lovingly decorated by Katie and Jonah. Now where to put it that two curious kittens won't lick the candies?

Sunday, December 21, 2008

How I've been spending my free time lately

Picture taken by Jonah. This is what I've spent the majority of my spare time doing lately, sewing a special project on my ancient machine (and now the bobbin threader is only working sporadically, oh freaking joy). Fingers, toes and everything else crossed that I can finish it before Christmas...

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Licking the bowl

One of my favourite things to do when I was a kid (heck, still is!) the bits cleaning up the sucre a la creme bowl...

Friday, December 19, 2008

Another long crawl home

This time with both traffic and craptacular weather. Don't worry, I wasn't taking pictures while driving, there were plenty of completely stopped idling in the snow moments with which to play shutter-bug. I'm mighty sick of this transit strike I tell you, mighty sick. Plus tonight I was au seule, C stayed in the city.

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Just wow

I can't remember the last time I paid this little for gasoline (though the news tells me it was about 3 years ago). This is way under half what I was paying over the summer, and suddenly this 'economic downturn' has a real silver lining!

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

The Brownies go Christmas carolling

It wasn't exactly what I had expected (20 girls going door to door carolling). Instead, it was more than 75 girls, on a trailer, the little ones all but drowned out by the older ones (Pathfinders, I think in the 13 to 15 range, OMG I'd have to kill myself rather than parent volunteer that age group!) All that said, Katie had a blast, and that's what matters.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Cardmaker - the next generation

The bits made some cards and ornaments to give to the nice lady at our tiny rural post office. This is Jonah's card, he did the art and stamping, I did the assembly :)

Monday, December 15, 2008

Bus strike

Ottawa is in the midst of a massive bus strike, all public transportation cancelled. Shouldn't be a big deal since I have both a car and a parking spot downtown but OMG the traffic! It took over 3 hours to get home last Thursday, the daycare people were livid. Friday we didn't even attempt a trip in. Today was a wee bit better, just a two hour trip home, but I left much earlier than normal. Who knows how long this might go on ...

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Christmas card outtake

Big J won't pose for our Christmas card picture this year (having had his wisdom teeth taken out 3 days ago *might* be a contributing factor) but the little ones, and kittens, obliged. This is one of the 'outtakes' since I don't want to display the chosen shot just yet :)

Saturday, December 13, 2008

Our tree

Finally got the tree up today, about 2 weeks later than I'd normally put it up. Just haven't felt all that Christmassy this year.

Friday, December 12, 2008

Sweet self portraits

Home today because of the bus strike, so I taught little J to use the timer on my camera with a mini tripod and let him go to town. I love his big green eyes peering into the camera from so close up!

Saturday, December 6, 2008

The Polar Express

We travelled to North Conway to take the bits on a magical train ride on The Polar Express (based on the book, and movie, of the same name). We've been looking forward to this trip since we booked it back in August, but hadn't told the bits anything about it until we actually got here. It was magical. We spent the day enjoying the amenities at the resort, then doing a little shopping at the huge outlet malls in North Conway.

Then after a lovely dinner, we boarded the train (dressed in our pajamas), destination:
North Pole.

Christmas carols were sung, hot chocolate and nougat filled chocolates were served by waiters in white coats and hats. Arriving at the North Pole, we were guided along a path, up a hill by dozens of red coated elves. Inside a dome the elves put on a little show and then the big man himself, Santa Claus, took a few minutes from his schedule to give the first gift of Christmas.

On the ride back to NH, each person aboard was given a magical bell from Santa's sleigh, so we would all have our own souvenir of our trip to the North Pole. The kids loved every minute of it!

Friday, December 5, 2008

Family Road Trip

Heading to New Hampshire today, 6+ hours on the road but a lovely mini-vacation waiting at the other end.

This shot is driving through Montreal. Scaaaaaary...

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Baby Shower

Just a simple gathering in the boardroom, balloons, pizza cheesecake, a couple of 'for mama' gift baskets and one very surprised coworker.

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Little hats, big memories

Decided it was time to pass this pair of little hats on to another pair of little bits. My own cuties wore these when they were 6 months and 2.5 respectively. Make by Baby Gap, I loved these hats so much when I first laid eyes on them! Very hard to send them away with all of those memories of my tiny bits attached...

Monday, December 1, 2008

More than half her life

I reflected, as Katie sat in the chair waiting for the ophthalmologist, that she's worn glasses more than half her life now. Wow. Chances are she'll wear them always. Dr figures her strabismus will be corrected by the time she's around 13, and at that point he figures she'll be near-sighted enough to need glasses. It's a good thing she looks completely adorable in specs.