Sunday, January 27, 2013

Happy Birthday Brendan, by Brendan and Mummy

In his own words...
I woke up in the morning and played playmobil with Tadhg. Then I opened some presents upstairs on Tadhg's bed. I got a lego x-wing fighter, a pirate island playmobil and some books from Uncle Phil.
 My mum took a picture of me and Charlie. He wrote 'me and Brendan' on his T-shirt. I got some lego ninjago and more lego star wars with snow troopers on Hoth, and a game called Rummycub and some drawings and some science stuff.

Mum made a smurf birthday cake for me. I invited Jeremiah, Charlie, Theo, Liam and Abigail, Hannah, Esme and Ira and Evan.
 I blew the candles out. Then we went out to play.
 I had a good day.

This is me building my lego.

 And that's it for words from Brendan, he's gone back to play with one of his presents. It was a lovely day, with minimal fuss, lots of adult company for us too. I'm loving this phase of being able to huddle with adults in the relatively peaceful kitchen while letting the kids take over the rest of the house. All the play was peaceful (at least peaceful enough to not need any parental intervention!) Tadhg decided to have a bath at one point and so didn't have any clothes on for a while, after some extended quiet time a bunch of kids came downstairs all dressed up, some had a go at decorating a T-shirt, one child and a group of parents played a game of rummikub, the cake was a hit, the sun was shining and it was a balmy -12C when we went out to play.
Happy Birthday to our lovely Brendan, who has proudly told anyone and everyone that he is now 6 at least 20 times today. What an awesome 6 years we've all had so far!

Monday, January 21, 2013

Forgotten draft

I'm going to publish this a long, long time after these photos were uploaded. somehow this draft got lost at the bottom of the drafts list. It's nice to see these now as we are in the throes of house selling and our house no longer looks like our own. Sad time. So here goes. Winter a year and a half ago! 

Saturday Skiing

With winter setting in we were thinking more about getting out and enjoying it. One family we've met through volunteer head lice checking duty at the boys' school are members of Nakkertok Ski Club and it sounded great when they told us about it. It has a really good social/family environment and their philosophy regarding the Learn-to-Ski program and kids is excellent. In a nutshell, it is all about moving and playing and not so much about talking.
While the kids are taking their lesson, I volunteer by teaching an adult class. I have six skiers ranging is skills but it has been a lot of fun. This is me with the Peaceful Polar Bears. 

Here is Brendan just behind the sign with his class of "Barking Beavers". Although it is a bit of a struggle to get out the door, the boys love it once they see their friends and start skiing.

As mentioned earlier, it is all about moving, keeping busy and playing. Something which suits Tadhg as this is what he does anyway, all the time!

Hard to believe but this is Tadhg (second one in from the left) and the rest of the "Parading Penguins" class looking all orderly and calm.

Catching snow flakes in between activities... I think.

This is the Parading Penguins heading out across the Stadium.

The boys on skis. Our new family activity. I'll have to ask my Mom and Dad what Scott and I were like as kids skiing at the end of St-Regis street. All I can remember is the fun part of going up and down the hills.

Sunday, January 20, 2013

sew finally

I've finally started sewing again! I've spent months moving my fabric stash from one place to another and back again, then a couple of weeks looking at the new sewing machine and flicking through some great sewing books from the library, then a week rearranging furniture because I just could not start sewing without an organized space... and, now, finally, at long last, and with many thanks to our friend for having her seventh birthday just at the right time, the sewing machine has been whirring and the kids have been having a go.
And I'm loving it. Baby sewing next!

Some almost finished pieces. The one on the red eventually became a little stuffed cushion.

Happy guinea pigs- I'm trying out a few options before hopefully doing some sewing with the little ones in Brendan and Tadhg's classes at school. This helped me work out how to organize it to make it easier on the day.

Our almost-5-year-old friend spent a good hour and a half engrossed in her sewing. When all the others had gone off to play knights and dragons she took her sewing with her and told them all she was playing and that she was the queen who was sitting sewing in the palace.

A little girly bag for a little girl. I can't remember the last time I did a zip with a lining. Man, did it challenge my pregnancy affected brain cells.

Brendan's gift for Hannah- "the boat doesn't have a sail because the lightning struck it and the wind blew it away."
 Spot the waterfall too.
And Tadhg's sewing also for Hannah (with a little help from mama to make a yellow 7)

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

bright new year

All in all it's been a tough year but with a wonderfully slow-paced and enjoyable last few weeks. With Steve at home, boys loving the snow, Siobhan comfy and the baby growing well, and with the house pretty much settled, there hasn't been much to do other than enjoy the peace of each day. We've been filling our days with lots of drawing and writing on the new craft table, reading upstairs and down, cooking, baking and eating, slowly sorting out desk spaces, bookshelves and cupboards, pottering about and listening to music, sledding, building snow forts and playing outside with neighbours, having friends join us for meals and walks, and of course soaking up the fun of christmas.

It makes my heart skip every time I look up and see the boys busily happy and getting along well with each other or playing with their dad. And when they suddenly have a bright idea and come running to us with requests for help. I try my hardest to oblige and not stomp on their enthusiasm even if, to me, it doesn't feel like the right time to break out the glitter glue or make scrambled eggs! One of my favourite times of each day is lying in bed in the morning and listening to the boys playing and speaking kindly to each other. (They seem to be most tolerant and kind in the first hour of each day.)

Although these are the moments I want to remember, it's not all peaceful and beautiful- we've had our fair share of bickering kids, grumpy parenting, protests over outdoor clothing or whingeing when screen time is refused. But these days the bickering is mercifully minor, I suppose because in general we have slowed down enough to release some of the stress and tension that had been building up throughout the year. We're looking after ourselves and each other much better and there is a lot more patience kicking around.

Brendan's plan for today is "colouring, playmobil, outside, colouring, playmobil, outside..." Although he has just spent half an hour writing invititations to his birthday party and has run upstairs to get dressed so that he can go and deliver them.  So I'll post this now, with a few photos from the last few days.

Happy New Year to everyone. Wishing us all lots of love and happiness and peace in 2013!