I have been remarkably off balance lately, in just about everything. I don’t know if it’s getting used to the new routine (school, dance, Sparks, more dance, skating, life group, leading courses, #headdesk), or simply me finding my place in the new routine. I’ve found I’m in a place where I feel like I’m spending a lot of my time rotating people in and out of the door and kind of just…facilitating other people to go out and be awesome. I’m finding myself left in the dust a little bit, and as much as I love seeing my family grow and stretch I know that I need to be doing that too. It’s just a matter of figuring out how and where and in what ways.
Apparently in wrestling all of this to the ground I’ve lost my bloggy voice. I have a lot of things I want to share though so I’m going to try to catch up a bit!
I’ll start slow and share some pictures from the last few weeks. It’s been pretty fun!
Sam still firmly loves all things animal.
He’s also very proud of his new medic alert “dacet!” which you can see in this picture. It has giraffes on it. He’s delighted.
Sam and I have made some trips out to the farm lately (Canadian Agriculture Museum to be precise). It’s got so that pretty much every day he asks me “Go see Sosies? Tows? Sheeps? Chicken?”
Totally amused by the ducks playing in the water bucket.
Admiring the rabbit with his friend Ava, who very thoughtfully colour-coordinated with Sam.
Angela gets full credit for this picture because she had to hold both kids up so they could reach!
We’ve been trying hard to enjoy the last few nice, warmish days of the year by heading to the park when we can….it’s getting cold fast!
Sam’s pants are a bit of a teaser – I’ll share a post about those in the coming days!
We’ve also been trying to find time to spend with some of the really close friends we don’t get to see as much. Anika and Maliah are in different schools now (booo)….
….and Karan went back to work so Sam’s almost daily playdates with Aidan are not happening so much anymore. Fortunately Sam’s mornings at Montessori are with A so he does get to see him a little bit…but it’s not the same, for sure.
Last weekend Brandon went on a hiking/camping trip so I took the kids to go visit Upper Canada Village.
We had a really great day – I had never been there but what a fun place to go!!! It was beautiful with the leaves, and Anika in particular LOVED seeing all of the old houses and hearing about life in the 1800s.
The interiors of the houses were a little lost on Sam – he’s a bit young to understand that he really can’t touch things, and he can’t really follow when the people were trying to explain quilting or chair making in the 1800s. But he loved being outside, and would happily sit on the porches while we went in and had a look.
He was also delighted to find out that there was a working farm at one side of the village, complete with not only “tows”….
….but also 5 little piglets who were happily running around and would let the kids pet them and feed them chunks of lettuce!
Probably Sam’s favourite part of the trip! Anika, bless her, liked the dressmakers and was THRILLED to tell them that she knew how to sew too. She also was really interested in the doctor’s house and grasped right away how people would have bartered for services.
It really has been a lovely fall so far, if busy. We wrapped things up this weekend by attending a lovely wedding for some friends’ of ours, Lisa and Stephen. They totally deserve their own post though, so I’ll share more about them and their special day really soon. But here’s one shot of Anika, doing the flower girl thing!
I am hoping to share more in the coming weeks….stay tuned!
Today is our 10th wedding anniversary.
I know! I feel like such a grown up! Brandon and I were sitting in our hotel this morning before breakfast, doing some math. We figured out that in our marriage we have:
* lived in 4 houses (our apartment in Waltham MA, Kerri’s mom’s place on Laurier when we first moved to Ottawa, Alta Vista towers, and now here).
* had 3 children (Anika, Oliver, & Sam)
* had 4 cars (a volkswagon jetta, a 1999 Rav 4, a 2006 Rav 4, and my
* lived in two cities (Boston and Ottawa)
* spent time in four countries (Canada, the US, Fiji, and France)
We got distracted at that point, talking about other places we’d like to go and things we’d like to do. But there are some fun things there – a lot of awesome memories connected to all of those things.
The good stuff isn’t the only thing that makes our marriage great though.
We’ve been through some tough stuff together too. We lost Brandon’s mom way too soon. We lost Oliver way too soon.
But fortunately our marriage isn’t defined by the bad things either.
Our marriage works because we are committed to each other; to our families; to God.
We are willing to change and to evolve together.
We are willing to talk about the hard things, and laugh at pretty much everything.
Is it perfect? No. But there’s not a step of the last 10 years I would do any differently.
Love this guy.
(And not just because he planned a totally secret anniversary overnight getaway – in which he arranged for the kids to be looked after, took us for 3 hours of spa treatments (!!), took us to an awesome hotel and to a lovely dinner (!!!!!), and then gave me some gorgeous earrings (!!!!!!!!!!). I am feeling like the luckiest girl in the world at the moment! And for those who are concerned, this was last night. I didn’t stop to blog .
Here’s to the next 10!
So remember a loooong time ago when I told you I was making this?
Yeah, me neither. But look, I finally finished it!!
I really really love this sweater. I love how it knit up; I love how it looks on – it’s going to be so useful for the fall. I’m really delighted with it.
I also still completely adore the colour….it’s just perfect.
I find I really go through seasons with knitting – much more so than with sewing. I generally try to do my sewing in the afternoons, when the boy is napping, and keep the evenings more for knitting….but that totally does not work when I have a deadline I’m working towards, or when I get all fired up about a project (never happens; don’t know what you’re talking about. Ahem.).
But as soon as fall starts to kick in I absolutely start itching to knit – there is nothing in the world more exciting than a “new” knitting project to start – I really love it. So being able to block this sweater and have it done just as the weather is starting to turn….the timing is perfect. By about Thanksgiving the timing will be exactly right to cast on my next project. Can’t wait!!!
In the meantime I’m totally going to enjoy this one. I love it
For those who care about such things, this pattern is Narragansett by Thea Coleman. I knit the size 34 but I have a really tight tension so I knew the finished product was going to be closer to a 32-33 post blocking (which is true! And also totally why you should swatch). I made a few small modifications – I did an extra inch or so on the armscye to get it to fit me properly, and I also made the sleeves 12″ from the armhole instead of the suggested 8 – I tried it at 8 initially and the sleeves hit right in the crook of my elbow and looked funny. Maybe I have long arms?? No idea. But anyway, that modification worked fine for me, and I think looks pretty close to the original. Totally make one – it’s fun; just interesting enough; and quick (despite the fact that it took me more than 6 months to complete. Am slow.).
Well, we aren’t quite done with the back to school around here. Little Sammo started this morning – two mornings a week at the Montessori that Anika went to last year.
He was very excited. He had his indoor shoes in his “Bee Packpack” (along with his epipen, a change of clothes, and some “Sam safe” snacks).
It’s such a lovely school – and it was so nice to be able to leave him somewhere where I know the teachers; I know the environment; I even know a lot of the kids. (There were a bunch of the little girls that started cheering “Anika’s coming, Anika’s coming!” when they saw me….sorry to disappoint ladies!)
By all accounts he had a great morning – he put his dishes away in the bin nicely after snack time; he did his craft; he worked on his circle shapes. He played with the other kids and he sang me songs he’d been working on all the way home. He can’t wait to go back tomorrow.
I fully expect him to hit a wall and be like “Woah, wait….you mean I have to go back here AGAIN today?!” But I really think it’s a good move for him to have some time with some other kids, and it’s going to be lovely for me to have a morning or two a week to myself.
Anika was probably more excited than he was!!
Dance started last night; both kids have started school; Brandon is registered for a couple of hockey teams….the year is off and running!
First, a brief update on yesterday. In short it was TOTALLY AWESOME and she had a great time. She made a friend on her bus coming home who is in her class, and she was a complete ray of sunshine all night last night – a very large (and welcome) departure from the last couple of weeks! So I think it will all be great.
And Sam….oh Sammo. He misses her terribly, and it’s coming out in little (and kind of hilarious) ways. Yesterday when we left the grocery store he INSISTED that he needed to sit in her carseat. So there he sat, with straps going up over his ears, all the way home. He desperately wanted to go by her school, where he waved frantically out the window and yelled “Hi Ahka! Yuv you Ahka!! Miss You!” Then we got home and he was standing on the driveway when a city bus went by. The boy basically LEVITATED, shouting “Ahka home! Ahka home!” This prompted a long discussion about city bus vs. school bus.
Anyway! Before we left at the end of August, we were invited to a birthday party for an absolutely lovely little girl. She was turning 4, and I wanted to make her something fun but I knew that in between packing and unpacking and repacking I wasn’t going to have a lot of time. I decided to make her a Lil Blue Boo Racerback, and for kicks I thought I’d break down the numbers for you.
So here’s the scoop:
Just barely over an hour, and that’s with the added drama of needing to change printer cartridges and convince my serger to BEHAVE AND WORK PROPERLY ALREADY. (That would shave about 15 minutes off the top, right there). Basically, you should totally pick up this pattern and make one of these because they are easy and fun and totally doable during naptime.
I used the free printable here to do an iron on for the front of the dress. Really easy!!!
Hey blog readers! I know I know – I vanished, and I’m sorry. There was a lot of life happening in the last few weeks of summer – parties to plan, trips to take, school to get ready for – lots to catch up on, but first we need to talk about this:
and also this:
Grade 1 today. First day at a new school; first time taking the bus.
I will tell you for free that the end of the summer has not been the easiest for Anika and I. She has a lot of attitude and entitlement these days, and she’s taking a lot of insecurity and uncertainty out on me. I know that much of it is age appropriate and whatever but….it’s still hard to take. And age appropriate or not, it’s not okay and it’s my job as her mom to show her why it’s not okay. Repeatedly. Over and freaking over again.
We had some great times this summer too. She swam like a fish….well, a slightly lethargic goldfish maybe, but she’s getting there. She rides her bike all over the place now – the two wheels are something she only conquered at the beginning of the summer. She’s made a ton of progress on her reading.
She graduated from Montessori.
And now Grade 1.
She was pretty nervous this morning, but I watched her steel herself and get on the bus, even though she didn’t know anyone. I watched her sit down in her seat, right behind the bus driver. I watched her drive away. I met her at school when she got off the bus (I needed to make sure she got to her teacher okay) – and she gripped my hand so tightly it just about cut off the circulation. We stood and met her teacher. She knows a boy in her class, but none of the girls, and she’s worried about that. I tell her it will be fine and she will meet people. I know that doesn’t make it immediately easier though.
She said “Goodbye mom, see you after school” and she got into line with the rest of the class. I watched her face start to crumple a little, and I watched her hide her face in her hands. Then I watched her take a big breath, turn and smile at me and tell me to say goodbye to Sam for her.
My heart is supposed to break a little with stuff like this right?
I’m counting the seconds till she gets home.
The kids and I are on the road this week – visiting my mom and dad, while Anika attends art camp. Good times! But no sewing machines. You see my dilemma.
Since you, my lovely readers, were so very supportive of my soccer playing exploits earlier in the summer, I thought you might be interested to know how things are going. Yes? To provide an appropriate update for you I gave Anika her camera during one of our recent games and asked her to document. AWESOME.
Now, first you should understand when you ask Anika to photograph something, sometimes you get pictures that look like this:
But she actually took some really great shots for us too. I’m leaving the totally skewed orientation of the pictures in place because seriously, how cute is that? Also, I love the five-year old perspective on these shots – soccer, at the field level.
(I succeeded at shoe tying. Hooray!).
In short, I am a solid work in progress. I am less afraid of actually touching the ball. I am still terrified before the games start but I’m settling into them okay. I’m genuinely sad when I have to miss one – and unfortunately I’ve had to miss the last bunch of them. NOT OKAY. I am really hoping to be able to play on Friday….but that might be our last game. Boo.
I had fun. I might even do it again. Awesome!