Friday, June 24, 2016

Coming Attractions...

Well, you know you haven't blogged in awhile when you have to go back to your blog and read some of your past posts to know where you left off. As I said in my Rachel birthday post last week, there hasn't been anything big keeping me from blogging -- I just haven't found/made the time to blog. It makes me sad but at the end of the day, I'd rather go to bed with a good book in an effort to re-charge for the next day than blog.

However... all that said, I miss this space something fierce. I miss documenting our lives. I miss interacting with all of you. I just plain miss it. So I want to catch up. And I want to re-connect with all of you. So this is my attempt to get back on the blogging wagon.

Here are some of things I will be blogging about over the next couple of weeks month :)

We've been doing a lot of walking. I love that I've discovered that it doesn't take all that long to walk to our pool. Or the closest mall :) I just love all the trails our city has to walk on. And I've even participated in a few official events. As has the rest of the family!
The photo of Rachel comes from here.
 
Rachel turned FIVE! How is that even possible?!?! We celebrated our girl in the most fun way and I can't wait to tell you about it.
I got to live my old life for a day...

Hanging with the kids at the pool on a PD Day.

I'm one step closer to my life being as I envision it and I can't wait to share that with you. (Oooohhh, the suspense!)

I no longer recognize my own yard...
Our house took one more step towards being perfect :)

We experienced a Blue Jays game with my parents and fourteen of my other relatives!

Awesome selfie photo from my cousin, Robyn!
 
It's almost my one year anniversary of owning a FitBit and I want to share some thoughts on that.

I explored the Chocolate Trail and it was amazing, again!
It's almost summer!!! After today, there will only be three days left of school. Whoooo hooo!!!

So yes, there is a lot to fill you in on. I'm looking forward to getting started on it.

Happy Weekend and see you next week!

Friday, June 17, 2016

Happy Fifth Birthday Rachel!!!

Dear Rachel,

Today you are FIVE! How did you get from our little baby Rachel Roo...
...to this???
Rachel, you have so much personality. You are friendly and loud and funny and sweet and curious and assertive and enthusiastic about life.
July and August 2015

You have loved going to school this year. You have lots of friends and I can tell that your favourite part of school is creating things at the art centre! It has been so much fun seeing your reading take off this year. You love to read books and you are learning so many words. I also like seeing you try to sound things out to spell them.
August and September 2015
 
You like to help around the house. You clean up the playroom so nicely and you like working in the yard -- watering flowers or picking dandelions. You like to help put laundry away. Funny Bunny is still your favourite stuffed animal and he and Target Blanket go with you to bed every night.
November and December 2015

Rachel you love all things girly. You love pink and bows and jewellery. Oma put some make up on you at Christmas and you thought it was the best thing ever. You always want to wear "a dress and tights" and we sometimes get into fights about appropriate clothing for what you are doing. I can already tell your teenage years are going to be fun :)

January and February 2016

Sometimes your personality leads to disagreements with Mommy and Daddy. You like to be so independent and grown up and don't like it when we try to put limits on what you do or steer you in a different direction. That sense of knowing what you want will be good for you eventually, even if Mommy and Daddy are pulling their hair out a little over it now!
March and April 2016

Rachel, your big brother Sam is still your best friend. I love how well the two of you play together. You want to be just like him and run after him and his friends on the school playground. You are willing to do whatever he wants to do and play baseball and Legos with him. I love how much you two love each other and I hope your relationship stays that way.
 
April and May 2016

Rachel Katie, I love you to the moon and back and you have brought so much joy to our lives. I hope you have the happiest fifth birthday ever!

Love, 
Mommy

To read about Rachel's surprising birth, click here.

I'm sorry I've been MIA on the blog recently. It was an unplanned absence and there was no one thing which contributed to it. I am planning on getting back into regular blogging next week, including some catch up posts. I've missed this little space and reading up on all of your goings on. See you next week :) I hope.

Thursday, May 26, 2016

My Budding Flower Photographer

The other day Sam and Dave were at T-ball and Rachel and I had the evening together. We went for a walk and then Rachel wanted to help me water my flowers before we went inside. I had the camera out, as usual, and then Rachel grabbed it and started taking some pictures. "I like all the beautiful flowers, Mommy," she said.
Those of you have been reading here for any time at all already know that I love flowers and I love taking pictures of them. Miss Rachel is definitely following in my footsteps. And here are some of her pictures.
The Sweet William and tulips growing around our trees.
Peony closeup
This is a planter of snapdragons and lobelia. The snapdragons have yet to bloom.
Bleeding heart and pulmonaria
Just the pulmonaria.

Rachel has a bit to learn, and it probably would have helped if the camera wasn't set on "landscape" mode, but I love seeing her perspective as captured by her.

Wednesday, May 25, 2016

What's Up Wednesday

I like writing (and reading) these What's Up Wednesday posts because it's a good way to give you a peek into our lives. Coincidentally, I also like reading "Currently..." posts. And Day In The Life posts, but I digress...
 
image from here

What we're eating this week... Random food. I'm highly unmotivated to cook, or menu plan, so I've basically been making it up as I go along and making lots of trips to the grocery store for one ingredient. It's a little annoying.
This weekend we belatedly celebrated my birthday with a low country boil, 
and, as you can tell, I ate more than my fair share of shrimp. Yum!

What I'm reminiscing about... Last summer when I didn't have to work. We had so much fun and I'm sorry that we won't be having any lazy days at home this year. Sniff.

What I'm loving... Our warm weather and all the lovely, long walks we've been taking outside lately.
We walked to a local mall this past Saturday.
It was a gorgeous day to go for a walk and we walked 12.5 km (8 miles) there and back. 
We did have the Chariot for the kids but they actually walked a significant portion of the way there.

What we've been up to... Yard work. I bought 102 annuals on Friday night and they need to be planted.
One down, 101 to go...

What I'm dreading... I don't know that I'm dreading anything right now.

What I'm working on... Well, really, we're working on our yard. I need to weed the front bed before I can plant flowers in it, but first I really need it to rain (which it is supposed to do this week) so that the ground is a little softer.
I weeded half this bed on my birthday (three weeks ago now) 
and now I need to do the other half...

What I'm excited about... Yard work. Are you sensing a theme here? Ha! I'm excited to get our yard in shape after winter and we did make good progress on it this past weekend. However, there is still more to do, and I'm looking forward to it.

What I'm watching/reading... The Walkable City: From Haussmann's Boulevards to Jane Jacob's Streets and Beyond by Mary Soderstrom. This book has been inspiring me to walk more.
 
What I'm listening to... The birds chirping outside my window. Now that the weather is warmer our windows are open all the time. I love it!

What I'm wearing... On Monday I wore my new shorts from Old Navy and I'm looking forward to wearing them more this summer. They're so bright and colourful! Yay! I'm also enjoying wearing t-shirts and bright necklaces. Oh, and sunscreen, I'm also wearing sunscreen.
Rachel and I were twinning in our sandals, 
red-orange shorts, and white shirts!  

What I'm doing this weekend... I don't actually know... Hmmm, I'll have to figure that out soon.
 
What I'm looking forward to next month... My parents are coming to visit next month for Rachel's birthday and all of my mom's side of the family who live in Ontario are going to a Jays' game. I'm sooooo excited for that! And the kids have a couple of days off school in June and, rather than find childcare for them, I am taking a couple of vacation days to spend with them. Yep, I'm using vacation days to stay home with my kids when just a year ago, that was my life.

What else is new... We got a water softener last week. That's kind of fun :)

Bonus question:
What are you looking forward to this summer?
Last time I did this, I was looking forward to a little birthday trip. Due to the hotel stays costing twice as much as we had anticipated, we decided not to do that trip. And another trip we had talked about for this weekend also fell through due to other reasons. All this is to say, I'm really looking forward to our long road trip this summer.

And that's What's Up this Wednesday. What's up with you?

Tuesday, May 24, 2016

Project 366: Days 135 Through 141

May 14, 2016 -- I recovered Rachel's rocking chair last weekend and then I spent some time sitting in it and reading A House In The Sky by Amanada Lindhout. Read this book. It's not an easy read but it is worth it.
May 15, 2016 -- Since it was a cold, rainy, snowy (!) weekend, I spent some more time sitting in a chair and reading. Anna and the French Kiss by Stephanie Perkins is a much lighter read, but definitely fun!
May 16, 2016 -- I finally had the chance to use some of the fancy salt Tessa and Janice brought us back from France.
May 17, 2016 -- I went for an evening walk and enjoyed the sunset.
May 18, 2016 -- I started reading The Walkable City: From Haussmann's Boulevards to Jane Jacob's Streets and Beyond by Mary Soderstrom. It encouraged me to walk Sam and Rachel to Sam's tennis lesson. It was a 8km (5 mile) walk which took about two hours there and back. By the way, Sam's tennis lesson was only half an hour.
May 19, 2016 -- I love watching Sam play T-Ball. He just LOVES it!
May 20, 2016 -- We kicked off the long weekend with ice cream before dinner. Sam appropriately chose Baseball Nut!

Wednesday, May 18, 2016

I Hope You Dance

I never thought I'd be a "dance mom." Tutus and plies and first position are (pretty much) outside my realm of knowledge, even though I've taken two adult beginner ballet courses. (The fact that I've taken two beginner courses ought to explain something!)
But Rachel has a lot of energy and dance seemed like something to check out, so we did.
And Rachel loves it. She loves leading other people through her dance warmups. She loves wearing her dance outfit.
She spent a couple of no school days at dance this year and all of March Break at dance camp. And she's going back for a week this summer. She just loves everything about dance.

Last week Rachel had her final session ever of preschool dance. In the fall she'll be signed up for the first level of ballet and next spring she will participate in her studio's dance recital. I'm so excited to see how she continues to grow as a dancer.
And I'm learning to embrace being a "dance mom!" After all, it appears that I have a "dance daughter."