Archive for ‘H’s Shenanigans’

November 15, 2013

And let the Holiday lies begin!


Have you guys ever heard of the Elf on the Shelf ?
It’s a cute idea that these two ladies came up with to start a family tradition around the holidays.
The basic premise is that you introduce your kids to their own Elf and tell them he/she will be watching them and reporting back to Santa on whether they’ve been naughty or nice. In other words, a clever little gimmick to prod good behaviour!

We decided to give the Elf a try in our house to see how H would like it.
I would say it worked for about a day before he started not to care whether or not the Elf was watching. But it’s still cute to hear him talking about Santa and getting excited about the holidays. Our family likes the idea of the Elf more for adding a cute magical element to the holidays more than as a way to modify behaviour.
So what do we think about the “white lies” surrounding Christmas?
For us, it’s all in the name of fun and encouraging creativity and imagination.
H loves to talk about magic and flying and I love encouraging his mind to stretch beyond everyday reality.

I’ve always LOVED Christmas growing up – the food, decorations, and family traditions.
Ours involved decorating the tree together, baking and stockings and I’m hoping to start some new traditions this year such as the Elf.

What traditions do you celebrate in your home around the holidays?

November 13, 2013

On Needles


Call me a glutton for punishment but we decided to take baby M in for his four month shots and at the same time get H his flu shot.
Vaccinations can be a hot button topic so let’s not even go there, but if you’d like to read a basic overview try this .babycenter article
Both kids have up until today been amazing with the doc and I am so grateful that we happen to have a terrific ped. So I wasn’t overly concerned about the whole thing.
Boy was I in for a surprise!
Baby M was actually great and only eked out a tiny little yelp for his two needles. Could be his chunky monkey thighs helped! I managed to cuddle him back to grins and laughs within a minute.
On the other hand,when it came time for H he seemed perfectly fine and was happy to pick out his Captain America bandaid. But as soon as that needle showed up, my normally super brave boy turned Into a terrified little guy and it all but broke my heart!
I totally turned to mush hearing him scream and say “No doctor don’t hurt me!”
With the shot came crying and clinging until we left the doctors office. I eventually got him in a better place with lots of cheerful chatter, fun activities and being a little more lax on his screen time.
I definitely prefer a needle to a terrible flu but I just hope he isn’t totally traumatized.
Will his next visit to the doc be a scary event for him?
Did I screw up by not doing more to prep him?
Or did I mention it too often and in doing so somehow plant anxiety in his little brain?
The experience made me realize that as a parent you can only do so much to shield your little one from pain and how you lose a bit more of that ability the more they grow. It was easy to comfort baby M but took almost the whole afternoon to snap H out of his funk (doesn’t help he has a crazy good memory and imagination).
In saying that, it’s a lesson in helping develop the coping mechanisms H will need to help himself through “tough” times like these. We read one of his books about a boy going to the doctor and I explained that even though the needle hurt it would make him strong and help him not get sick.
Ugh! Hate needles though.

August 13, 2012

Artsy Farts

A study in black and white…H pointed to a blob on the bottom and said ‘mommy’

One really cool part of being a parent is when you see your kid’s personality, style and interests start to poke up. Kinda makes all those other crazy times (like our hospital visit late last night, or a temper tantrum today at Chapters) seem forgettable and inconsequential.

Upon first glance, H would seem like a bit of a brute.  Whether it is his sometimes surly demeanor, his loud and commanding yell, or his larger-than-most stature – the kid wouldn’t necessarily strike you as being a softy.  However, from an early age he has absolutely loved scribbling, ‘drawing’ and anything arts and crafts related.  He can literally lose himself in his ‘art’ forever (toddler translation – 15 minutes).

So while he has a definitely fondness for monster trucks and soccer balls – we wholeheartedly encourage his creative side.  As somebody who has always loved the arts and designing, I feel like maybe this side of him might come from lil’ ole me and it makes me feel kinda squishy inside 😉

Here are some awesome artsy & craftsy type toys for those who love to create!

from $8

If your kid is anything like mine, he/she has cultivated quite the obsession with rocks.  So when you take two of his loves – rocks and crayons and combine them…bam…toddler-winning!  These crayon rocks by Clementine are super-cool.

via $84.95

Most of you will know the name Melissa and Doug and associate it with feel-good wooden toys, especially those of the ‘sensory play’ type.  This easel is no exception and has all the trappings to keep your little Picasso busy for a good while.

via $12.95

Texture is a big one in our household – so anything crinkly, squishy, crunchy…you name it, H wants to get his hands in it!  This might be a bit advanced for him right now but for the older ones its a lot of fun.

via $30.95

The AGO is a great place to take your little to hang for an afternoon, especially since they’ve opened the Weston Family Learning Centre.  Take home something from the gift shop after you get inspired!  This Giant Art Jar is…exactly that.  Can’t beat it.

via $29.99

As a kid, I pretty much would have died over this.  I was often caught drawing on the walls at home, so this would have been the perfect way to let the graffiti artist in me let loose.  Let your lil Banksy go wild.

What kinds of activties does your kiddo get up to?  How do you like to encourage their interests?

August 12, 2012

Hipster Toddlers

toilet paper circle scarf

I stumbled upon a pretty great site recently when I googled ‘hipster toddler’ after I became concerned that I was raising a ‘b-ipster’ (baby hipster)….

Signs that prompted me to question whether I was raising a ‘b-ipster’:

1. Child has epic meltdown because he wants his fedora (and not his newsboy hat nor his baseball cap, god forbid)

2. Child can’t string a sentence together yet enjoys both drawing tattoos on himself as well as the application of fake tattoos however only if they are ‘gulls’ (skulls) or basketballs, and only if said tattoos are applied en masse all over his legs/arms.

3. Child’s favourite colour is black…(but which he, for some bizarre reason, insists on calling ‘lellow’)

4. Child has already mastered (at the tender age of 22 months) the art of giving an ironic stare coupled with a smirk.

5. Child dislikes authority.

Anyhoo….my overall thoughts after checking out the Hipster Toddler tumblr is that while no, H is not a ‘b-ipster’, he definitely has a unique little character and personality that seem to be coming out more and more each day.  He definitely keeps the laughs going on strong with his silly antics and his funny sense of style.


October 18, 2011

First Birthday Bashola!

made out of scrap paper

Baby H is officially no longer a ‘baby’.  We had his Halloweenie-themed first bday party over the weekend and of course, he had the biggest meltdown of his life at the beginning!  After a few minutes of warming up to all the freaks dressed up in costumed garb he realized it was going to be the time of his life!  And let the good times roll…

dj lance, superboy & batgirl celebrating our first year as a fam 🙂

I’ve gotta say this past year has been many things:  hilarious, frustrating, too short, too long, annoying, enlightening, enjoyable, sleepless…but most of all this year has been the most rewarding of my life.  H is a total ham and cracks me up all the time.  He is also one of the most impatient and stubborn people I’ve ever met in my life.  The year flew by and hubby and I are looking forward to everything coming up ahead while trying to savour the moments!

When you throw costumes, parachute/balls, a Justin Bieber pinata, an Uncle in drag,  tons of cheesy dollar store decor,  yummy food (and okay, a lil alcohol) in the mix you end up having a pretty darn tootin’ time.  H was all smiles and loved his first taste of cake.

H with some of his pals...cuteness

smores on a stick...will post easy peasy recipe

loot bags are always fun

photobooth fun

skully cuppies

yaaaa! partayyyyy

September 25, 2011

Dinner Party + Baby = Disaster?!

Suspect armed with drool and considered dangerous to dry clean only garments

So things have been a little hectic around these parts, hence the lack of posts!  I’ve been meaning to get this one up for over a week now and seems like every time I try, Baby H is causing some sort of ruckus 🙂

Since he is now acting (and looking!) very much like a toddler, I can’t really get away with calling him Baby H anymore.  He’s got nicknames up the yin yang but for now the one that sticks is Beastie, because of his antics and his devilish smile.

Anyhoo – we were celebrating a friends’ engagement recently and decided to have them over for dinner. Since we have transformed most of our living space into a rec room for Beastie we figured a menu comprised of appis would be a great idea – hand held, bite sized, no cutlery (or table for that matter) needed.

When you have a super active lil guy on the loose you have to roll with the punches.  Gone are the days of sitting back, casually enjoying wine (which, by the way, used to be left on your glass/steel coffee table near the edge without a second thought) for an hour and then convening at a table for a leisurely multi-course meal.

Our appi-dinner party went off splendidly since we:

A) Prepped everything ahead of time – our meal, Beastie’s meal, cleaning up the place, cleaning up ourselves, cleaning up the kidlet

B) All serving dishes were kept high and out of reach.  Made a bit more legwork but avoided any disastrous pulling down of trays/plates

C) Kept copious amounts of good wine flowing so that the excited screeching of Beastie, while appreciated by us parents, could be dulled a bit for the newly engaged couple

I think the most important thing is to keep your sense of humour and realize that things can’t be perfect with a kidlet cruising around trying to grab your guests’ necklace/hair 🙂  Our guests remarked that they didn’t see us both sit down once together at the same time!  This is true but honestly we had a great evening despite the seeming craziness of it all.

The important part is we got to spend a nice evening with good people and Beastie got to be a good little host.

tomatz for the zuke bruchetta

Thai Chili Chicken Croustades

Zucchini Bruschetta


Thai Chili Chicken Croustades – sounds kinda schfancy but actually really simple!

Zucchini Bruchetta – a nice variation on one of my fave appis

Honey Herbed Lamb – Ontario lamb was tastier than the usual New Zealanders we get

Samosas – we cheated here and picked up from a local joint, veggie and then some beef and they were delish

Spinach Raspberry Salad – we succumbed to cutlery here

Ice Cream Sandwiches – homemade chocolate chip cookies trapping some yummy vanilla bean ice cream in between…can’t lie, I ate two.

Though we love dining out with Beastie I’m happy that we figured out a way to entertain in our home while keeping a relative state of zen-ness throughout the whole affair.

What are your experiences with entertaining in your home with a toddler/infant?




September 14, 2011

Sugar Beach

pink brollys existing outside of a drink

Sometimes its fun to rediscover a little patch of the city you thought you knew…Here we are taking a lil break at Sugar Beach…or what was formerly known as a parking lot.

taking in the view


August 30, 2011

When The Cat’s Away…

with CGM

Crazy Granddad

So it has arrived…we will be embarking on our very first overnighter away from Baby H!  I’m excited for the break but obvs a little nervous.  H will be hanging with his CGP’s – Crazy GrandParents 🙂  Hey it was a self-appointed nickname! They are CGP because really, they just love him so much!  They’re insane.  He loves being with them as you can see!

So to prep for this trip I put together fact sheets…Sleep, Food, Emergency and Daily Schedule.  I know, right?!  Speaking of crazy…Honestly, I know that whatever they do H will be fine with his CGPs.  I think its more to aid me and make me feel less antsy about the whole thing.

While putting together the factoids I really came to realize how much time I spend with H and how well I (think) I know him.  It seems like I can anticipate and read his little signals and that our days run smoothly (for the most part) since we’ve got such a little routine going.  Though things change so rapidly at this age, I definitely love being able to be there for all those little moments.

At the end of the day though, as much info as I could pack into excel, I feel lucky that we have people in H’s life who care for him as much as we do and I think he will be thrilled to have some time away from Ama & Dada!

So mamas out there…have you left your LO with sitters overnight yet?  How did you prepare yourself/them?  How old was LO when you left them for the first time?  Would love to hear others’ thoughts!

Ohhh and ONE MORE DAY to enter the Giveaway sponsored by Life Choices!  Click Here to enter 🙂  Good luck and keep your eyes out for the next review/giveaway coming up this week.

August 16, 2011

Ever Been to the Bowmanville Zoo?

  Took an impromptu little trip to Bowmanville Zoo and Baby H was just loving being around all the animals!  His faves were the crazy goats crowding around trying to eat everything in sight including his toesies 🙂

Great little spot if you want free parking, lots of shade and not too much walking. A nice alternative to the Metro Toronto Zoo which can be a bit much for a baby who won’t sleep in the car/stroller 🙂  We got to see all the requisite animals and the lion feeding up close as well as a super cuddly baby cheetah!  Don’t ask me what that animal in the middle picture is…we think its an anteater of some sort but it was uber creepy/fascinating. Anyways if you’ve never been…you should check it out.




July 6, 2011

Food Truck Eats

before the crowds

pulled pork & brisket Buster Rhinos Southern BBQ

catfish taco and lobster sammie

Canada Day weekend was lotsa fun – nothing like seeing friends & fam and BBQing til you can’t stand the smell of smoking ribs anymore! (if that is at all even  possible).

We checked out the Food Truck Eats event at Distillery District Saturday morning.  We anticipated it drawing a killer crowd so we got there before 11 when the food would start to be served.  Boy were we right!  Instead of the anticipated 500 people showing up, over 3000 eager Torontonians got their eat on.

Awesome weather and one of my fave spots in the city combined with yumminess everywhere made for a great lil saturday morning treat.  We didn’t get to sample everything because lineups became ridonk, but we did get to try the goodies above along with some fan-frickin-tastic grilled cheeses (one of my absolute fave foods) from Gorilla Cheese :  the best IMO being the marscapone, strawberry, hazelnut spread served on raisin toast!!!! Ahhh! Just thinking about it makes me drool.  Also tried the viet sandwiches and some of our group got to sample the gourmet popsicles.

Totally led me to dream about opening up my own truck!  Would make it super cute and troll around the city serving up smiles and some yummies!!! What would YOU serve if you had a gourmet food truck?!


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