Tuesday, January 28, 2014


First big "YES!!!" of the day!? A school cancellation! 

I should explain that those are rare in our area! They are reserved for the true blizzardy days and if the temp (plus windchill) are at -45 degrees. This year we've had three... which is like a huge record (and tells you we've had a HARD winter!) as Jon only had one or two his WHOLE childhood... so yeah! It was special! 

We had pancakes for breakfast (attempt two on coconut flour pancakes went better... but has yet to be perfected!)... followed by a little play time with daddy before he had to leave for school! (Teachers are expected to come, even if there is a cancellation! Sad, sad... I know!)

Our friend came and built the girls a big snow hill over the weekend...

... so there was lots of playing to be done, even though it was crazy cold!

Snow time was followed by Play Doh practice, at the suggestion of little Miss. CP!

I was instructed to make each of the girls a wedding cake... and was even promised a job in the (VERY distant!!) future as the official wedding cake maker! :)

It might look pretty, but Caidrie would attest that appearance isn't everything!

During nap time the two older girls even did some painting. And let me tell you... Play Doh AND painting in one day is truly a wonder in this household! I still get near heart palpitations at the sight of opened paint jars spread across the table... but on a no school day... ya do what ya gotta do! :)

Monday, January 27, 2014

Looking for Blessings... Saturday edition

 We like to sleep in on Saturdays.... and with Alia going to school now, Saturdays are even MORE special! So when the girls woke up at 7:20 am (all three of them!) we weren't so pumped! We gave them permission to do a couple crafts, and promised we'd make them breakfast in half an hour just to sleep a bit more!

The day had just begun and I was already cranky... then I came downstairs to this!

Notes on our chairs...

And breakfast for Jon and I, made by the whole crew! 

- Alia cut and cored the apples (oh my gracious, I praised the Lord for keeping her fingers all in tact and we had another safety lesson about sharp objects!)
- Larren peeled the bananas
- and Caidrie put things in the compost pail

I found it really sweet that Alia even plastic wrapped our plates... but it was really just because Lars and Caid kept snitching chocolate chips off the plate so she wanted to keep them out!

(I made them baked oatmeal as a reciprocal "thank you!")

That should have made my whole week... but an hour later I was madly tidying around the house and getting grumpier by the tick tock of the clock. I texted a friend and said "Let's head to Winnipeg... I'm losing it!" and she responded with "Let's take our oldest girls out for tea, and pretend it's Wpg only closer!" 

Her option sounded better, so that's what we did! I sadly didn't take many pics, but having gluten free options was a definite blessing! As was cuddling with my little lady before they met us at the tea house... and seeing how grown up she's getting! We browsed the cute little gift shop and had a wonderful leisurely afternoon! 

Another blessing... Dairy Queen having their cakes and ice cream goodies half off! We stocked up... as you can see! : ) Just kidding... this is for three families. And this here is how us Canadians utilize the cold... it becomes a second (or third!) freezer! For awhile anyhow!

Quick little post... I know... but it feels good to pick up the ole camera again and take notice of the small things around me. 

Mental note : keep doing that!

Friday, January 24, 2014

Why I've Been "Quiet" Lately

It's been a long long time since I've REALLY blogged. "Really" meaning that I've  told a story that I was excited or passionate about!

Maybe it's because it's winter, or maybe it's because we're in limbo with the whole house building thing, or maybe it's because I've gained weight, or maybe it's because our lives have just changed quite a bit with Alia going to school (both good and bad!) but.... I'll say it... I'm in a rut! I don't get excited about much lately... except essential oils!

I feel like when I blog I need to take pictures to remember the time of life we were in... but in the winter it's just our same four walls, with the same people, wearing the same clothes that they do every day (because it doesn't matter that their closets are over flowing... they still want to wear leggings and their horse shirts!) and I'm not the most motivated to snap away at the same old, same old! 

So... I may sound like a debbie downer... but the moral of this post is... I haven't forgotten to write... I just don't feel like I have anything to write about! Call it winter writer's block if you will!! 

When there's something "news worthy" I'll be sure to let my faithful few readers know!!

In the meantime... here are a couple pictures I stumbled on from two years ago! They are oldies... but oh how they make me smile!!

Caidrie is now wearing the shirt that Alia was wearing in this picture!! 

My littlest lady dancing with me as we worship in the kitchen!

Sigh... I know that time goes fast... but it sure is easy to forget that fact when the day is spinning, and wild, and loud, and chaotic!

I need to stop and LOOK for the Lord's blessings around me... I've gotten out of practice and it's time for my camera and I to do a little "looking for His love" together. And there's never a better time to start than winter... because does anyone need an extra reminder when it's brutal, freezing, and barren out there! 


Tuesday, January 14, 2014

Essential Oil Safety - Can Essential Oils Be Taken Internally?

For all of my "essential oil friends" here is a FABULOUS article re: this IMPORTANT topic from a company that I fully trust! Take a look when you get a minute!!

Plant Therapy - Can Essential Oils Be Taken Internally?

Monday, January 13, 2014

This is what happens...

... when big sister (a.k.a. Mama Cat) keeps an eye on her sisters while Mama and Daddy get a couple extra half winks of sleep on a Saturday morning!

When asked why she wrote on CP with markers...

... she responded with a "well I couldn't glue strips of paper on her face for whiskers..." matter of factly.

When you put it that way... true that, mama cat... true that!

Thursday, January 9, 2014

I am Canadian....

This video clip was played COUNTLESS times when I was dating Jonathan. I mean come on... dating a Canadian was pretty cool, and there was something about this clip that just made me "fall more in love" every time I watched it! Though I should have clued in back then that yes indeedy... the fact that I had no idea what a "chesterfield" was until watching the clip would signal some pretty big changes to be had upon moving to a new country!


This has been a hard road. Harder than I ever expected or prepared for. Those close to me know a bit about my journey here... and the uphill battle (at times!) that it's been... but I can say, that after 8 1/2 years... finally... FINALLY... this PLACE is feeling more like HOME.

I am Canadian now. I'm thankful that I'm also still American... but now I am no longer an (outside) American living in Canada. I might have a different background than those around me... but I am now a true part of this country and this culture.

I didn't realize how much this citizenship would mean to me! I really only went to the ceremony because I would have had to start the long (and expensive!) process over again if I didn't. BUT... both Jon and I were blown away by how honoring it was!

It was a BIG ceremony... with over 80 people getting sworn in... but from the minute it started, it was a treat!

There were many many cultures and countries represented (I was one of two Caucasians)... each person with a different story to tell... each being welcomed with open arms by the officiating judge and those assisting him. He made me (us!) feel SO invited, accepted, appreciated, and a true part of this great nation. It honestly just shocked and surprised me! It was quite different from the FIRST "welcome" I got as a new bride with a trailer full of belongings moving to new territory!

I teared up on several occasions as people around me went forward to get their certificate. 

One lady was so elderly that she had to have assistance walking to the front to get her certificate... but she did it... and returned back to her seat with a smile!

And no... usually my hair does not look like a built in bike helmet! Jon said my hair was "special" that day... though he assured me that's a rarety and not the norm! :)

People have come from violent war torn lands... poor impoverished surroundings... and have undoubtedly filed some things away in their minds that they would rather forget... but now, they are part of a safe, just, fair country. The cheers and applause of those in the room made it clear that many saw it was a privilege to be thankful for, not a right!!

I LOVE being a Canadian now... but it's times like when Alia rattles off French words from school that I'm reminded of how American I am! I must look quite silly as I flip around in my French/English dictionary to find the words she's wanting me to guess! :) 

But a couple things are for certain...

... I'm proud (and undeserving!) to be this man's wife...

At the Old Spaghetti Factory for a celebratory lunch after the ceremony

... it IS pronounced Zee, NOT Zed...

... and I WILL be learning French to impress the little smarty pants right off Alia, a time or two! ;)