Sunday, October 28, 2012

There's a party in Heaven

There's a party in Heaven today for two little girls that asked Jesus to come and live in their hearts.  One of the most precious sounds I can hear as a mother is the first cry of my baby.  But I believe that a VERY close second would be those words spoken with a little bit of a lisp, "Oh Jesus, won't you come live in my heart?"

It all started with yesterday.  My very quiet girls were downstairs...painting the walls with nail polish.  This morning, when it was discovered, Clark and I decided the consequence would be no TV for a very long time.  Well, long in little girl time anyway.  So, today we listened to music.  Specifically worship music.  Then we got to Carman.  Have you ever listened to The Champion?  It makes me cry every time. 

Abigail listened to the opening strains and said "I don't like it, it's scary." 
I told her that it was a good song.  It was a song about Jesus having a fight with Satan. 
She then said, "Mommy, who's going to win?" 
I told her that Jesus wins, and because He wins, we can be with Him in Heaven if we ask Him into our hearts. 
Abby thought about it for a second, then said, "OK Mom, let's pray."  Annika asked if she could pray too, and now my little girls will get to see Jesus in Heaven someday.  What a great day we had today.

Thursday, October 25, 2012

A rant of sorts

Two things. 
  1. We were spoiled when we lived in Taber.  Our garbage was picked up every Tuesday, except if there was a holiday, then it was on Wednesday. 
  2. I like schedules.
Ok.  I understand that in the big city of Medicine Hat, the days of garbage pick up have to change after every holiday.  That makes sense to me.  What doesn't make sense is:  One week, our garbage will be picked up at 7 AM, the next week it might be 11 AM, the week after we're looking at 9 AM. 

WHY is it not the same every week?  I would think that the garbage people (what's the politically correct term these days?)  would have a schedule of what streets to do when, kind of like a checklist, and in my world, that should mean that the garbage would be picked up at approximately the same time every week.

As you were.

Monday, October 22, 2012

The best thing about fall.....

is watching your children jump in the leaves.  On Saturday, Clark suggested that we take the kids to a park to look at the leaves.  I misunderstood and thought he meant JUMP in the leaves, because that's what we used to do when we were kids. 

We found a very leafy spot in Kin Coulee and tumbled out of the van to jump in leaves.  Some nice person even left their rake there so we could make a huge pile. 

The kids had a blast.  Clark said that jumping in leaves was a much better idea.  I asked him what he had meant when he suggested our outing, and he said "I thought we'd just sit and look at them."  He didn't jump into leaf piles as a child.  Poor kid.

Tyler was not a fan of the leaves.  I think it had more to do with how cold it was that day and not really the texture.  I'm sure next year he'll be more excited.

The girls had a blast.  It makes me wish that we had trees in our yard.  Then, I think about how glad I am that I don't have to rake all of them up, and I get over it very quickly!

One word of caution.  It is not a good thing to make a huge pile of leaves and then check your pockets only to find that you had dropped your keys INTO the huge leaf pile.  It makes for a bit of a stressful time.  The power of prayer and a little girls sharp eyes, the keys were only lost for about 10 minutes.
The best thing about fall is watching your children jump in the leaves.  The better thing is to jump into a leaf pile yourself.  There's nothing like the smell of leaves.

Sunday, October 21, 2012

I shudder to think

It was a bittersweet week for me last week.  My BFF, Chantal, and her husband came down for a quick visit.  It's always nice to see them.  They are about to embark into parenthood, so I gave her ALL of my clothes that I had lying around and didn't want anymore.  You don't realize how much clothes accumulate over a 5 year period until you put them all into the living room.  I gave her all of my boy and girl clothes, since they don't know what the sex will be first, and it's good to be prepared.

I had two HUGE totes of the girl's clothes sitting out in the garage, and so we decided to go through those first.  The first one we made pretty quick work of, then it was on to the second one.  I went through the top, and noticed that there were little black pellets on some of the clothes.  I asked Chantal if she thought they were mouse droppings, and she said maybe...but really, how does one know?  We sure did after we got halfway down the tote and saw a pink onesie that had been chewed through and burrowed into to look like a little nest. 

I'm amazed that Chantal and I were so calm.  We took the rest of the clothes in the tote outside in the freezing wind and dumped the contents onto the deck.  No mouse emerged, so obviously it was long gone.  However, I still get chills thinking about it.

Saturday, October 20, 2012

Saturday Snapshot ~ The Albino Pancake

If anyone has ever been to my house for breakfast, and I've made pancakes, then you will know that I typically burn my first pancake.  I finally got smart and started pre-heating the frying pan, and so now I make wonderful first pancakes.  Today's pancake took the gold though.  It was perfectly cooked, but before it could turn brown.  An albino pancake.  Have you ever seen anything so beautiful?

Friday, October 19, 2012

You were right, I was wrong.

It's a good thing Clark doesn't read my blog, or he would know that I am going to admit that he was right and I was wrong.  Kind of.  Let me explain. 

When we found out Tyler was going to be a boy, I immediately started thinking up boy names.  It's what we do, I come up with pages of names that I like and Clark finds something wrong with all of them.  It's amazing to me that ANY of our children even have names. 

Anyway, when Abigail was born, (boy, this is going to be a really long story, isn't it?) I didn't want an A name.  My sister and I both have the same initial, and I was determined that our children would not be the same way.  Well, guess what?  The only name Clark liked started with an A. 

So, when Tyler came along, I decided that we should do an A name, and it just so happened that I had the perfect one.  Alaric.  The name comes from my favorite book series of all time - The Legends of the Guardian King.  *On a side note, if you click the previous link and read the introduction, you'll see that the main character's name is actually Abramm.  One of his middle names is Alaric and he goes by that for much of the fourth book, and it kind of stuck with me.* 

Anyway, I LOVE that name and had my heart set on Tyler being an Alaric.  Clark took one look at me and said no.  I think the exact thing running through his mind was "What is it about my pregnant wife that she comes up with ridiculous sounding names?"

A little part of me was sad about that for a very long time, until the other night.  I was channel surfing downstairs when the Vampire Diaries caught my eye.  Not because I was going to watch it or am remotely interested in vampires (they are right up there with zombies in my book), but because of the episode guide.  There's a vampire hunter on the show named Alaric.  And, while I know this might sound strange, I would have wanted Tyler to be named after the Alaric in my book, instead of having people ask me if he was named after the Alaric in the show. 

So, to my husband, you were right to veto Alaric, but not because it isn't a nice name, because it is!

Thursday, October 18, 2012

When you were two.....

Wow, I can't believe it's been three years since this little girl graced us with her presence.  Being the middle child probably isn't easy, but Abigail makes it look like it's a piece of cake.  She's so laid back (most of the time) it's sometimes easy to forget that she's around.  Here's my list of things I wanted to remember from her past year.

Dear Abigail,
  • you starting talking...and talking...and talking....
  • you were IN LOVE with your was a struggle to get you to give it up
  • you were so IN LOVE with your soother, that I gave it back to you when we started potty training as incentive for you to not have accidents.  It worked quite well.  Giving up the soother finally worked well too.  If you had an accident in your underwear, we threw a soother out.  It got to the point where you did it yourself without me having to tell you.  Now, you're soother free!
  • You can say Grandma and Grandpa and Moogie quite well, but you still call your Morfar "Far".
  • You call your sister "Ka", but you can call her by her name if you so chose.  I guess it's faster to say Ka.  She is probably your best friend.

  • You've started copying your older sister in temper tantrums.  You like to say "I'm mad, Mad, MAD!"
  • Every time Annika goes to something, you want to do the same thing, so you say "Me too!"
  • You love to sing.  Your favourite songs are "This Little Light of Mine", The Winnie-the-Pooh Theme Song, and "Jesus Loves Me"
  • You can open the door to your room by yourself now.
  • Your sister likes to take toys from you by substituting them with something else.  If you're playing with a Barbie that Annika wants, she'll give you a teddy bear.  You let her.
  • Guess what you've starting doing with your baby brother when he has a toy that you want?  At least it makes for less fighting over things.
  • When we ask you what you want for supper, you ALWAYS say "fries".
  • You love to go swimming, but if we go in the deep end, you hang on very tightly and say, multiple times, "Keep me safe."
  • You are brave and like going down the waterslide.  By doing that, you help your older sister to be brave as well.  Thank you.
  • You prefer wearing dresses to pants.  Then you ask if you're a pretty princess.  The answer is always going to be yes.

  • You love drinking slurpees.  When we leave the 7-11, you always say "Bye slurpees, see you tomorrow."
  • You like to call sprinklers "sprinkles".  You also call the wrinkles on your fingers from being in the water "sprinkles". 
  • You don't quite understand when you talk about someone, you should use the word she (or he).  You always say her.
  • You like rocks and pine cones.  You name them.  All of them.  Skippy.  It makes it easy for me to remember their names!
  • You can't say snow yet, you call it Mo.
  • You've stopped napping.  I'm a little sad about that.
  • Your hair is long enough for me to do fun stuff with.  I love french braiding your hair.  You don't like having to sit still.
  • You love Jesus.  You might only have been two, but you were a good teacher for the rest of us in how we should always go to Him first when we have a problem.  I remember one summer day I had a horrible sunburn on my back and wasn't feeling too good, but had to clean the house anyway, and you followed me from room to room saying, "Let's pray to Jesus so you can feel better."  I pray that you always run to him first.

  • You are the BEST at giving compliments.  Out of the blue you'll say "I like your shirt Mommy."  Thanks for making my day over and over.
  • When your Daddy and I are talking about you and we say your name and you hear us, you say "Me?"  If you're out of the room and you hear us talking about you, you'll yell "What you say?"  It never fails to make me laugh.
  • You're funny.  When we laugh at you, you get mad and say "Stop laughing!"  That usually makes us laugh harder.

    You are a joy to have around and we are so thankful you are in our family.  Happy birthday baby girl.

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Cute Things Annika Says (Part Thirteen)

And another installment!  I really don't know how they come up with this stuff! 

I was putting a ponytail in Annika's hair this morning, and I told her to sit down on the floor so I could do her hair more comfortably.  She kinda squatted in front of me and put her arms over my legs so they were supporting her. 

While sitting there, she said, "This is the hot life.  That's Hawaiian for 'this is pretty cool.'"

I didn't know that, did you?

Annika and Abigail were playing dolls this morning.  This is what I overheard.

Annika:  Abigail, let's take our dollies to Africa.

Abigail:  Are there rides in Africa?

Annika:  No, those are in the United States.  They have American rides there.

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Cute Things Abigail Says (Part Six)

Oh, this girl comes up with some of the funniest (and sweetest things).

Yesterday we were having lunch at the table.  Abigail was looking out our living room window and noticed our neighbour, Mr. Fred, was outside.  She said, "Oh, there's Mr. Fred!  He looks so handsome today."

I thought it was cute and so I went outside and told him what Abigail had said.  Turns out that he had been having a really crappy morning, and it made his day. 

She's so good about complimenting people just out of the blue.
Abby thinks that she should always be the first one from the van to the house.  However, she has a big sister who is faster than her, and she's always the last one out of the van.  Guess who usually makes it to the front door first?  Well, today was no exception.  Annika was at the front door when Abigail finally got out of the van, and the first thing Miss Abby did was stomp her foot and say, "Impossible!  She shouldn't get to the front door first!!!"

I LOVE her use of big words!  Yay for vocabulary!

Monday, October 15, 2012

And the winner is.....

I'm shocked that more people didn't want these cards.  They are beautiful (and were made with love).  Without further ado, the winner is......

Congratulations Jelea!  If you can't wait until November when you see your sister, send me an
e-mail with your address and I'll get those cards out to you this week! 
Thanks everyone for entering, stay tuned, I have another giveaway scheduled for this week (or early next!)

Sunday, October 07, 2012

A Thanksgiving giveaway

It's Thanksgiving tomorrow.  I have a whole bunch of stuff to be thankful for.

My husband.
That it's our anniversary today and we've been married for 6 years! 
My kids.
That I get to be a stay-at-home mom.
Pink rice salad.
Fall colors.
Snow that falls on the ground then promptly disappears.
That it's my Dad's birthday tomorrow!

I could probably go on and on and on and on.

My very good, darling friend Flo is a whiz at card making, and she has graciously made a set of 8 cards for me to give away to a lucky reader.

These wonderful fall cards are a perfect compliment to the changing colors outside!
They come with three different pictures.

 A pear:

A leaf:
A flower:

The package includes:
2 happy birthday cards
3 thank you cards
2 thinking of you cards
1 just a note card

This contest will run until October 14th and is open to anyone in the world!  All you have to do to enter is to leave me a comment about something that you are thankful for.  Please make sure to check back on the 15th to find out if you've won or not!

From my family to yours, happy Thanksgiving! 

Saturday, October 06, 2012

Saturday Snapshot ~ The 6th Christmas tree

It plugs into your computer using a USB port.  How cute is it?  Thank you Target!

Thursday, October 04, 2012

In denial over fall

I have to admit, even though it was VERY cold and rainy yesterday, I wore shorts and flip flops.  I can't seem to wrap my mind around how we were just in a climate where the weather was 20 degrees warmer than it is right now.  What's wrong with this scenario?  Oh right, I'm here instead of there.  I told Clark we should just pack the kids up and take them to California for the rest of his holiday.  He doesn't go back to work until Tuesday, it would be plenty of time to get there and back!

Today I bit the bullet and wore jeans and socks and running shoes.  Insert sad face here.  I did make my favourite fall meal though.  Insert kinda happy face here.  Two things I love about this recipe.  1:  It's made in a crockpot.  2:  If it's noon and you decide you want to make it for supper that evening, there's still plenty of time to do it.  (Which is what happened to me today.)

Doesn't that just look yummy?  OK, maybe not too appetizing, but let me reassure you that it is very good.  The recipe actually calls for just corn, but when I was making it this afternoon, I found that I didn't have any corn, just mixed vegetables.  It changes the flavour a little bit, but it's still good whichever way you make it.  Here's the recipe!  The changes I make are reflected in the bold.
4 slices bacon, chopped (I usually add 6 to 8)
2 medium onions, chopped
2 stalks celery chopped  (I usually add 6, it seems to balance out the onion)
2 medium potatoes, chopped (3)
4 cups corn kernels, fresh or frozen (mixed vegetables work just as well!)
4 cups chicken stock
1 bay leaf
1 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. black pepper
2 Tbsp. butter or margarine
2 Tbsp. all purpose flour
1 can evaporated milk OR 1 1/2 cups whipping cream (I have never used whipping cream, I just use the milk)
1 cup grated Cheddar cheese
Cheddar cheese
Chopped fresh parsley
1.  In a large nonstick skillet over medium heat, cook bacon, onions and celery for 5 minutes or until onions are translucent.  With a slotted spoon, transfer mixture to slow cooker.
2.  Add potatoes, corn, stock, bay leaf, salt and pepper to slow cooker; stir to combine.  Cover and cook on LOW for 8 to 10 hours or on HIGH for 4 to 6 hours, until vegetables are tender and soup is bubbling.  Remove bay leaf and discard.
3.  In a saucepan over medium-high heat, melt butter.  Add flour and stir to make a smooth paste.  Slowly add milk, whisking constantly to combine.  Bring mixture to a boil, whisking constantly until thickened.  Remove from heat and stir in cheese until completely melted.  Gradually stir milk sauce mixture into slow cooker.  Cover and cook on HIGHfor 20 to 30 minutes.  Serve garnished with additional Cheddar cheese and chopped fresh parsley.
Recipe taken from the cookbook Canada's Best Slow Cooker Recipes by Donna-Marie Pye