Thursday, November 29, 2007
Packing to do list

Today I am going to post my "to do" list on the computer because otherwise I think it will just get lost in the stuff that is piled up around the apartment!


1) non-maternity clothes
2) Dwayne's non-work clothes
3) kids clothes that are too small/too big
4) extra sheets, blankets/quilts, towels, etc
5) candles
6) games & puzzles
7) kitchen stuff that won't be used in the next few days
8) contents of bathroom drawers and cupboards
9) reloading supplies
10) fragile items from living room
11) candle holders

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posted at 2:03 PM  

Tuesday, November 27, 2007
A little house update
Sorry, no new pictures today! There was too much building material scattered around to get a good shot and the van was blocking the view of the porch so I'll have to get some another day.

In about half an hour or so Hendrik, Riley and I are going to go and see Dwayne out at our property. We haven't been out there in several days and a few things will have visibly changed. Dwayne has enclosed the porch, installed most of the bathroom (we still have to tile the shower), the fridge is now in the kitchen, and there should be a growing pile of boxes inside as we move little by little. I am charging the camera battery while the car battery is warming up so that I can take a few pictures and post them when I get back. It starts getting dark around 3 p.m. so if I want pictures I've got to get moving!

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posted at 12:58 PM  

Monday, November 26, 2007
Commitment to Loveliness
It's been a very long time since I've participated in this nice exercise from Emma over at Charming the Birds from the Trees.

"This is a fun way to increase femininity and beauty in our lives each week without even trying! All you have to do is choose five things that you would like to work on or do during the week that will increase the loveliness in your life!"

Here are my 5 things for this week:

1) Take as many baths in the next few days as possible - we move this week and our new house doesn't have a bathtub!
2) Groom my eyebrows.
3) Book hair appointments for Hendrik and I.
4) Paint my toenails.
5) Mix up some homemade cleaner that makes the house smell sweet and fresh.

For other lovely ideas visit Emma's blog!


posted at 12:23 PM  

Sunday, November 25, 2007
It is pretty darn nippy outside today.

Fort Smith, NT forecast from

Our high for the day is supposed to be -27C! Right now with the windchill it feels like -37C (which is pretty much -40F).

We are really going to have to bundle up for church this morning and plug the car in for an hour or two before we go. When it gets this cold, it feel like your car's seats are made out of bricks. They freeze and there is no give. Your tires tend to feel a little square too. Our car's speedometer makes dreadful sounds for the first few minutes because it ices up somehow and can't keep pace with the speed the car is going.

They've changed it to a high of -22C for today but we are still sitting at -27C. I think -22C is a bit optimistic.


posted at 12:37 AM  

A Christmas Classic
Today a group of us girls are going to get together and watch Irving Berlin's "White Christmas". It has always been popular in our family and we love to sing along with our favourite songs and laugh at the corny ones.

I was so excited when Diana Krall's Christmas CD came out a couple of years ago and I saw that she had recorded the song "Count Your Blessings Instead of Sheep", originally sung by Rosemary Clooney in the film. It is one of my favourites from the movie. Here are the lyrics:

Count Your Blessings Instead of Sheep

When I'm worried and I can't sleep
I count my blessings instead of sheep
And I fall asleep, counting my blessings

When my bankroll is gettin' small
I think of when I had none at all
And I fall asleep, counting my blessings

I think about a nursery
And I picture curly heads
And one by one I count them
As they slumber in their beds

If you're worried and you can't sleep
Just count your blessings instead of sheep
And you'll fall asleep counting your blessings.

So if you're worried and you can't sleep
Just count your blessings instead of sheep
And you'll fall asleep counting your blessings.

~Irving Berlin

Blogger seems to be acting up so I'll have to add a picture later...


posted at 12:01 AM  

Friday, November 23, 2007
Pudginess, Piano and Pipe Wrenches
Our little sweet pea is finally gaining some weight! I thought she had been feeling heavier lately but wasn't sure if it was just because I had to hold her more awkwardly with my expanding belly. I weighed her Wednesday night before bed and she is 19lbs! That's up almost 3lbs from a month or so ago. Her cheeks are chubbier, her double chin is back, her thighs have rolls again, and she has dimples by her elbows. Yay!

Riley is turning into quite the little musician. She loves to stand up against the piano bench and reach up and play the keys. It's so cute to watch and she is so proud of herself.

Hendrik took to "fixing" his truck yesterday with a hammer and a pipe wrench.

I love my sweet babies!


posted at 10:31 AM  

Thursday, November 22, 2007
This afternoon the kids were both feeling mellow and were happy to play with their toys in the living room which gave me a chance to get some packing done.

I filled up 3 huge plastics bins:
1) ice skates, in-line skates, cross country ski boots, fishing tackle, football, basketball, mosquito netting, accessories for our double stroller, badminton racket, etc
2) bags, smaller luggage
3) life jackets, floatation suits

I was also able to clear a pretty big laundry backlog from the laundry area. If all goes as planned I should be able to get a couple of more bins packed today with out of season outerwear, boots/shoes, snowmobile helmets, sleeping bags, etc.

Riley is napping and Hendrik is "fixing" a toy truck so I am off to pack up our VHS tapes, Cd's, Intellivision & games, and Super Nintendo & games, but first I should probably tackle cleaning the aquarium and filter, etc., so I can pack that up and get it over to my dad.

I spoke too soon! Riley is awake already...

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posted at 3:52 PM  

Wednesday, November 21, 2007
It's feeling crowded around here. There is stuff everywhere and I feel like I'm in one of those little puzzles with all the little squares and you have to shuffle the squares around until you make the right picture. Thankfully, I found homes for some furniture that will not fit in our house right now and I have also made some progress with the laundry and downsizing a few things. There is still a lot to do but now that a few "puzzle pieces" have been shuffled around, it feels much more manageable.

Hendrik was an absolute sweetie today. He was so good and so helpful. He had a blast helping me with the laundry. He loves the blue and orange buttons that light up (and beep!) on the new washer.

Riley had a bit of a rough day. Her eyes look a little off today. I'm not sure if she's teething or fighting a cold or what. Just not her usual self. Mostly happy, but not the typical constantly happy girl that we are used to.

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posted at 11:51 PM  

Tuesday, November 20, 2007
Slowly (or not so slowly!) going crazy...
Update: Thankfully the hunger strike didn't last too long. Once he started eating he became much more reasonable. The rest of the day actually didn't go too badly. :)

We dropped the fish off at his new home and he is now happily ensconced in his new environment with many new fish friends. Catching him was a bit of a task but we succeeded after only two attempts and I managed to only get a drop of aqaurium water in my mouth despite the bru-ha-ha. Yuck.

Toddlers. They can be so cute. They can be sooo whiny. This morning has had me dreading what the rest of the day holds. So far Hendrik has been so miserable that I don't even know what to compare him to. He's refusing to eat, aside from a piece of cheese and a bit of juice earlier. There have been tantrums and flailing and incessant whiny requests for things we don't have or that I can't understand. Maybe he's getting sick, I don't know. Thankfully Riley is chipper today so I don't have crying in stereo.

I found a home for our plecostomus yesterday.

I am glad that he has a new home. Not many people are interested in such a large fish. Ours is at least 8 inches long from head to tail. He was tiny when we got him but after cleaning up after our giant goldfish for half a year he caught up with them in size. Now that the goldfish have passed on, he is all alone in the tank. We were hoping we could find someone that would want him as we are going to be limited for space at our new house and our tank takes up quite a bit of room.

The guys at our local water treatment plant are going to adopt him for their fish tanks. I'm taking him down there later on today. Now I just have to figure out the best way to catch him. They are armoured fish and have some spines so I'll have to be careful. I'm going to try emptying most of the water out of the tank first and then try to get him to swim into a bucket. If that doesn't work, I'll try picking him up with rubber gloves. I think I'm going to end up covered in aquarium water either way. Fish, much like toddlers, don't take too kindly to being prodded to do things they don't really want to do.

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posted at 12:47 PM  

Saturday, November 17, 2007
It's always Martha, Martha, Martha!
Have I mentioned that I love Martha? I really do. Every single project or recipe that I have ever tried from her website or one of her magazines has turned out. Not a single flop amongst them.
There seems to be a sort of unwritten guarantee of success when it comes to Martha Stewart.

Today I was looking for a recipe for an Hawaiian themed church potluck tomorrow. I headed over to her site and found this recipe for Hummingbird Cupcakes. (I'm short on time and energy so I didn't make the dried pineapple flowers for the tops.) The cupcakes are great though! I made them without the nuts just in case of any allergies.

On Friday I also picked up the December issue of Martha Stewart Living. I eagerly await it's arrival every year. It's my must have issue. Usually I skip November's issue because Thanksgiving has already come and gone for us in Canada. By the time December's issue hits the newsstand I pretty much have Martha withdrawal! I even asked to have the magazine put aside for me as only 3-5 copies of each issue are sent to our town. For those of you who are city folk, that is probably a little bit unimaginable.

This Gingerbread Town-Square Cake looks beautiful and sounds delicious. The Gingerbread Bedroom Mobile is also a cute idea for little ones.

On a sadder note, Martha's mother, Martha Kostyra, passed away on Friday at 93. She often made appearances on Martha's shows and was always such a cheerful, bright addition to the show. I'm sure she will be greatly missed.

posted at 11:59 PM  

Friday, November 16, 2007
Overdoing it
This afternoon the kids and I walked downtown to run some errands. They were cozy and warm in their Croozer and I was glad to get the exercise. About a minute into our walk a ligament that joins my leg and pelvis started to hurt. (This has happened with both kids so far and by the end of my pregnancies I'm lucky if I can walk without hobbling at all.) It took us about 10-15 minutes to get downtown.

We went to the drug store and picked up wipes, diapers for nighttime & naps (otherwise we try to use cloth), formula for Riley, vitamins for Hendrik and the new Martha Stewart magazine for me. Then we headed to the post office to mail a package and pick up a package. Our heat driven fan arrived today. It will sit on top of our wood stove to help circulate heat in our new house.

When we got back home Riley was asleep and as soon as the Croozer stopped Hendrik asked to "keep driving". I agreed and told him I would just take the diapers, etc into the house. I thought it would be nice to walk along Park Drive, a dirt road just across from our apartment. It isn't maintained in the winter but usually there is enough snowmobile and vehicle traffic to make it drivable - at least for a car. I felt like I was plowing snow the whole way. The snow wasn't as packed down as I thought it would be and the stroller sunk down in the snow as I pushed it along. I thought about going back after about 5 minutes of walking but that would have meant going uphill. I didn't like that option and figured it would be easiest just to keep going and then join up with one of the other roads and walk home on pavement. In hindsight, it was far from easier.

By the time I got to the end of Park Drive I could barely walk. The ligaments in my legs were sore and my belly was feeling strained too. I still had at least half the distance left to walk home. I had to go at a snail's pace. I wondered if I would actually make it home or not without having to sit down on the side of the road somewhere. I had left a note for Dwayne telling him where I had started walking so at least if I didn't show up in a reasonable amount of time he could come looking for me. We did make it home, finally. I think I probably looked like an 80 year old walking down the road. It took me an hour to get home. Normally that walk would probably take about 20-25 minutes. I won't be doing that again.

I am shuffling around tonight. It hurts to lift my feet off the floor. Actually it hurts just to sit still. Oh well, we all got some fresh air, the kids got their nap, and I got a dose of reality. There are just some things that shouldn't be attempted when you are 6 months pregnant. I am not superwoman!! :)

Did I also mention that I managed to frostbite my cheeks despite my efforts to cover up my face? I didn't even notice until I got home. My cheeks are all splotchy and mottled now. It looks lovely. :p

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posted at 11:59 PM  

Thursday, November 15, 2007
An Amy Butler portfolio for the "I love Paris!" swap
Here is a project that I completed for an "I love Paris!" swap that I am participating in over at Swap-Bot. I have had this fabric printed with a map of Paris in my stash for a few years now but hadn't figured out a use for it yet. This fit the bill. I think I will make one for myself now too! :) I hope my swap partner will like it.

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posted at 4:05 PM  

Wednesday, November 14, 2007
I realized that I haven't taken any new photos of the kids for about 2 weeks now. That seems like a really long time to me in this age of digital cameras. I think it is because our house is in such a state of disarray right now as we get ready to move and as I try to downsize our things. I don't like seeing clutter in the background of pictures and I think that it has kept me from taking the usual amount of photos. No more excuses! Grandmas will be looking for updated photos by now I am sure. :) I also want to take a little video of Riley clapping - a new skill for her!


posted at 2:08 PM  

Tuesday, November 13, 2007
15 minutes
Despite the feeling of productivity yesterday, I didn't actually get all that much done. Today was even worse. I've decided that I am going to break out my timer and work on a few chores for 15 minutes at a time. Maybe then I can get to some sewing that I've had sitting in my living room for the past two weeks!

15 Minutes of:
Tidying the kitchen
Folding laundry
Cleaning the bathroom
Reading with the kids
Tidying the living room

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posted at 7:40 PM  

Handmade Holidays

Sew Mama Sew! has a month of tutorials for November called "Handmade Holidays". There are some really great projects and most of them are quite simple to make (yay!). Have a browse around for ideas or tackle one yourself. :) There are new projects daily.

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posted at 11:13 AM  

Monday, November 12, 2007
Feeling productive!

It is a beautiful, bright, winter day outside today. The trees are all covered in a light dusting of snow from yesterday's flurries.
It is putting me in a Christmasy-productive-packing-playful sort of mood. A slightly strange combination admittedly but it should make for a fun day!

Dwayne is out at Bell Rock putting the flooring down in the bathroom, finishing the battery bank, and starting the skirting around the bottom of the house. The kids and I will likely drive out for a little visit sometime this afternoon to see how things are going and to bring out a snack.

The kids are eating and watching "Madame Blueberry" and I think I will take advantage of this time to do some less kid friendly activities like mopping the floors.


posted at 10:30 AM  

My baby is growing up!
I am a little sad. Riley is growing so fast! In just one month she will be a year old. She is learning so much and trying new things all the time. However, she is starting to leave her baby ways behind. I think she is slowly but surely weaning herself. I know my milk supply has not been great lately due to my body being taxed from being pregnant but I thought that she would continue to nurse for quite some time. Hendrik was still nursing at nap time at 18 months! At this rate, Riley will be done with nursing by the time she's a year old. Thankfully she is a cuddly little girl, and even though she may prefer a bottle these days, she does like to snuggle up to her mommy when she has her bottle or when she is tired. I'm so proud of her and happy that she is growing and developing so well but at the same time I'm going to miss her baby ways too. :)


posted at 12:01 AM  

Sunday, November 11, 2007
Je me souviens.

In Flanders Fields the poppies blow
Between the crosses, row on row,
That mark our place; and in the sky
The larks, still bravely singing, fly
Scarce heard amid the guns below.

~Lieutenant-Colonel John McCrae

I painted this crude image my 2nd year away from home while at university. In the province I was living in Remembrance Day hardly seemed to be remembered at all, which I found ironic as it hosts our nation's capital. Unless you worked for the government life went on as usual - school, work, etc. I remember finding it so strange to have classes that day and stranger to find that Remembrance Day wasn't mentioned at all. There were people wearing poppies here and there but that was it. I couldn't figure it out.

I had grown up with Remembrance Day being a big deal. In our territory it was a holiday. Most of the town, or so it seemed, would gather in the morning for the annual Remembrance Day service. The local cadets would participate, as would the Girl Guides and Boy Scouts. At the end of the service everyone would walk down the main road, following veterans, members of the Rangers, Royal Canadian Legion and R.C.M.P. to the cennitaph. It is typically very cold and windy on November 11th and although the walk is short it is not comfortable.

That, I think, is a good thing.

If we can imagine the discomfort and suffering that men and women of our country went through, and continue to go through, to secure our freedom we will appreciate their commitment and sacrifice that much more.

This little painting was my response to a day where there seemed to be no response around me. It just felt wrong. So I observed the occasion myself in my residence room. Je me souviens.


posted at 12:50 AM  

Thursday, November 08, 2007
Lots to do!
It's getting closer and closer to moving for us and I am suddenly realized how much packing I have to do! I plan to work on a bit everyday. Naptime and once the kids are asleep in the evening are probably going to be my best bets for most of the apartment. Here's my plan for today:

- Fold & put away clean laundry, downsize clothes One out of 2 rooms anyway!
- Tidy living room
- Vacuum
- Play "I capture you!" with Hendrik
- Go for a walk
- Dust
- Pack VHS tapes
- Pack another box of books
- Downsize in kitchen
- Take superfluous stuff downstairs

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posted at 10:30 AM  

Wednesday, November 07, 2007
I have finally started packing. It seems a little premmature on the one hand but I don't want to leave things to the last minute (as usual) either. I've started with our books as we are not likely to be reading much in the next several weeks. I've been cataloguing them in a spreadsheet on the computer as I go along so I know exactly what we have. I'm also making a note of the box each book is in to save rummaging through mountains of boxes later. We don't have enough bookshelves (or room!) to display all of our books so I figured that this is probably the best route.

Next I think I will start on the VHS tapes we rarely watch but keep because they are kid friendly. Then it's on to all my regular clothes that won't fit for another 6 months at least!

It feels good to be doing something visibly productive. :)

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posted at 11:39 AM  

WFMW - The Backwards Edition - Organizing sippy cups and bottles
Around here we have a fair selection of sippy cups and bottles. They are all the same brand so the parts all interchange with one another. However, they still are an awkward thing to store. They tip over easily in the cupboard and then there are all the little valves and lids and food storage seals and nipples to store. Any suggestions?

Go to Rock in My Dryer for the full WFMW Backwards Edition list!


posted at 11:32 AM  

Friday, November 02, 2007
One of those mornings...
This morning Hendrik woke me up all excited to go to his music & movement class. I got he and Riley changed and dressed and was about to put them in their jackets and warm clothes when I looked out the window. Dwayne had taken the car, and thus Hendrik's car seat with it, to work. The van was in the driveway but only had the two front passenger seats in it as it was used to haul building supplies earlier in the week. I called Dwayne at work just to make sure. It was just as I thought and the van was low on gas as well.

Dwayne offered to come and get us and the we could drop him back off at work on the way to class but by the time he would have got here, the kids got loaded up, we got him dropped back at work, I got the kids unloaded and out of their winter clothes at the Rec Center, the class would have been half over and I didn't think it was fair to interrupt a 30 minute class 15 minutes in.
Poor Hendrik was very disappointed but has recovered rather well as toddlers tend to.

To top all of this off, while I was getting everyone ready Riley fell off of our bed. Thankfully, our bed is quite low and the floor in our room is carpeted but still...

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posted at 12:06 PM  

Thursday, November 01, 2007
Pregnant belly!
Here is my belly at 6 months! :)


posted at 10:50 AM  

You don't have to be crazy but it helps!
Today is the first day of NaNoWriMo 2007. I have been following this site for a few years now and have contemplated participating several times but never quite got up the nerve. This year I decided to give it a go. I think I may have completely lost it! We are hoping to move to our new house in the very near future, I have 2 little people to chase after, and a to do list a mile long but I'm really feeling the need to do something somewhat creative. This involves no cost, no time consuming set up or take down every day, no safety risk to the kids or to me, and allows me the chance to let my imagination run wild without having to worry about someone grading my work. I don't know if I'll actually make it or not but it's worth a shot!

For those of you who are wondering, NaNoWriMo stands for National Novel Writing Month (say NAN-no WRY-mo)and it is a self-induced contest with one's self (and others if you choose) to see if you can write a novel in the month of November. To qualify you must have written 50,000 words at the end of the 30 days. The novel is never read or judged by anyone on the site, you simply submit your document to a verifying word counter on the site. There is no official prize.

I honestly don't have a plot so I am just winging it. I don't know what the finished product will look like. It will probably never be reread by me or by anyone else. I by no means consider myself to be anything resembling a writer, it's just something new for me to try.

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posted at 10:00 AM  

About Me

Name: Jenny
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