All the Pretty Flowers

June 30, 2012
I picked out some lovely plants to put in the pots on our front steps a few weekends ago, and finally got around to taking some photos to share with you. Picking out plants is a yearly tradition that my mother and I do, and this year my grandmother was here for a visit so she came along -- as did my son. Last year my son got to be with us as well, but this year he was able to explore everything :)

Unfortunately, I cannot tell you what all of the flowers are, but I love looking at them and pretending that I know how to garden.

The spoon that you see in the third photo is from the lovely shop Pretty Paris, and the blue pot that several of the flowers are in was a gift from my husband's grandparents upon the passing of my grandpa -- I will remember him always.

Enjoy your weekend!


Little Purple Hearts

June 27, 2012
I want to show you this simple little bracelet that I found hidden in a jewellery box in one of my dresser drawers. I had completely forgotten about it. I only vaguely remember where it might have come from -- a family friend after a vacation that they took somewhere -- and I have no idea how long I've had it for -- at least since my middle school years.

I don't think that I wore it much when I was younger -- I was not a bracelet person because I was usually wearing a watch...that ended last year while I was on maternity leave -- but when I found it sitting in that jewellery box this past weekend, I fell in love with it, and put it on immediately. I just had to share it with you :)

Happy Wednesday!


So Magical: Three Things I Love About Disney World

June 25, 2012
Outside Cinderella's Castle after getting my hair done on my birthday :)

1. I love how you can do anything you want and not look super lame or nerdy -- those words don't exist in Disney World: Dads walk around with goofy hats on their heads, teenagers sing along with Disney songs, and I got my hair did at the Bibbity Bobbity Boutique on my birthday.

About to watch "It's Tough to be a Bug"

2. It truly is "The Happiest Place on Earth": It is a rare occurrence to find someone that is unhappy during their stay in Disney World. There are so many fun things to see and do while you're there, and everyone has completely different experiences during their visit. I don't recall ever being a grump while I was there, nor seeing anyone that was being a grump either.

Cinderella's Step-Mother and Step-Sisters were absolutely hilarious!

3. Disney Magic: There is absolutely no way to describe how you feel when you are in Disney World. Everyone needs to experience it for themselves, and we all feel the magic in different ways. I absolutely love the fact that I can be just like a kid and meet all of the Disney characters that I watched while I was growing up -- and still watch -- and how it feels like you are in a completely different world. It truly is magical :)


Birthday Memories

June 22, 2012
At Boston Pizza on his 18th birthday -- 10 years ago!

Yesterday was my husband's 28th birthday. It seems like yesterday that I was planning his 16th birthday surprise party, and he drove to my school to pick my up after my exam was finished -- he just got his license that morning.

There have been so many other memorable birthday's -- I like the surprise ones best -- like when he turned 21 and I arranged for his best buddy to drive two hours to surprise him at a local pub -- along with many other friends. That was the day that he got Optimash Prime.

Thumbs Up!

I know that we have many more birthday's to come -- and some will be surprises...shhh...don't tell my husband -- and the years will only get better, especially with Little Boy in the picture :)

Have a happy weekend!


A Grilled Cheese Opera: Part Two

June 20, 2012
Ladies and Gentlemen, intermission is now over. Please return to your seats for the second half of The Making of a Grilled Cheese Sandwich: A Pictorial Opera in Two Parts.

Part Two: Cheese Makes a New Friend 

1. Grilled Cheese and Tomato Soup from Steff Bomb 2. Grilled Cheese and Tomato Soup Poster Print from Amanda Catherine Designs 3. Croque Monsieur - How To - Greeting Card from Beau Wylie Illustration 4. Grilled Cheese Friendship Necklaces from Cherry Dot 5. Make Grilled Cheese, Not War - Button from Allegrae 6. Unframed Grilled Cheez Print from Jill K in LA

We all know that this opera can only end in sheer happiness. I mean, really, who doesn't love a bowl of tomato soup with teeth and fish shaped crackers?

Find Part One here.


Father, Where Art Thou? Oh...There You Are

June 18, 2012
We started Father's Day 2012 with a bang, or rather, a drill...

With the help of family, I bought my husband a drill for his Father's Birthday -- his birthday is later this week, so we combined the two and bought him a nice big gift. He's been needing a new cordless drill -- with more power -- for quite some time. So I picked one up, and placed it in a place where he would see it as soon as he woke-up. He was so excited :)

After having lunch with my husband's family to celebrate Father's Day with his own Dad, we headed to one of the local pools for a swim with our son. He absolutely loves going to the pool, and we always enjoy taking him. We try to get there at least once a month, and today was the perfect day.

After the swim, and a nap -- at which time we let Dad watch some golf -- we headed over to my parents house for supper to celebrate Father's Day with my Dad. My husband and son had a great time using the footstool as a little car -- driving it up and down the hallway -- and they had fun playing chopsticks on the piano as well. A great end to a fantastic day!

Little Boy made some Father's Day art for my husband while he was at daycare. My husband has it hanging up on the fridge. He's a lucky guy to get art as a gift on Father's Day -- and so it has begun...

Did you do anything special on Father's Day?


At Peace

June 15, 2012
It took my husband and I about one year to get pregnant -- from the time we started to the time that we found out, it was almost exactly a year. Now, I know that there are people out there who have had to wait, or are waiting, a lot longer than a year to get pregnant, but it feels like forever when all you want is that little bean growing inside your belly, and it seems like everyone around you is getting the thing that you most desire.

I remember anxiously purchasing pregnancy tests and anticipating the answer -- which was always negative -- for the first few months, and then I entered several months of sadness. It wasn't until I sat down and told myself, and my husband, that if we were meant to have a child then we would, and if we weren't meant to have a child then I was okay with that. I knew that there were other ways to have children, and I was more than willing to open up my heart to a child that needed it if I was unable to do so with a child that my husband and I created -- although I know that a little piece of sadness would always be there in knowing I couldn't give birth.

It was after this peace that I made with myself that I got pregnant.


A Grilled Cheese Opera

June 13, 2012
And now, ladies and gentlemen...The Making of a Grilled Cheese Sandwich: A Pictorial Opera in Two Parts

Part One: The Cheese Does Not Stand Alone

Part One of the opera does not end in tragedy, but in pure deliciousness!

Find Part Two here.


Silent Sunday

June 10, 2012

Silent Sunday


Weight Update: A Before & After

June 09, 2012
During pregnancy, I gained almost 50lbs -- that included the water and my little baby. After giving birth, I lost almost 15lbs immediately, and then I hovered around 160lbs for quite a while until the effects of breastfeeding finally kicked in. When I finished breastfeeding, I weighed 150lbs without any exercise or attention to what I was eating.

Before: I weighed 160lbs & After: I now weigh 140lbs

Three weeks ago, I began my journey of weight loss, and I am proud to say that after weighing myself today -- I only weigh myself once a week -- I am now 140lbs! It is so very exciting to me to be able to start wearing some of the clothes that I haven't worn in almost two years -- especially the summer dresses.

"How did I lose so much weight in such a short amount of time?" you ask?

While a lot of people would say that that is a lot of weight to lose in such a small period of time, I must tell you that I was drinking a can of coke a day along with either a big bowl of ice cream or salt n' vinegar chips. And while I haven't cut them out completely -- because I still like to pour myself a small glass of Coke or eat a small scoop of ice cream at least once a week -- I am not getting as many empty calories as I once was, and my body has reacted to that.

This past week, I lost one pound, and that is what I think is going to continue to happen throughout the rest of my journey. The first two weeks were a big shock to my system, and I remember my doctor once telling me that if I were to cut out Coke from my diet, I would lose 5lbs instantly.

I know that there will be good weeks and bad weeks. Weeks where I get lots of exercise and really watch what I eat, and weeks where I'm not as active and maybe don't lose as much as I would have wished -- I must say that I had to psych myself up about losing one pound:

"Good grief, LC, it's one pound! Let's keep on keepin' on!"


A Little Science: Ice Cream in a Bag

June 06, 2012
I was looking for some fun summer experiments to do with the children at work, and I found this really fun recipe to make ice cream in a baggie. It seemed simple enough, and almost too good to be true, so I tested it out at home first to make sure that it would actually work.

You will need:

2 tablespoons of sugar
1 cup of half & half -- or light cream
1/2 teaspoon of vanilla
1/2 cup of salt -- coarse salt or table salt
large Ziploc bag -- gallon size
small Ziploc bag -- quart size

First I measured out the cream, the sugar and the vanilla, and mixed it all together in a measuring cup. I then poured the mixture into the small baggie and sealed it up.

Then I put two ice cube trays worth of ice along with the salt in the large bag. The salt is very important because it helps lower the freezing point of the ice, making it so the cream mixture will freeze and turn into ice cream. Check out the science behind it here.

Once I had the ice and salt inside the large baggie, I put the small baggie inside. Then I shook it all up! I quickly learned that my large baggie had a hole in it, and I had to do the shaking over the kitchen sink -- the price for buying cheap bags.

After shaking the bag for what felt like forever -- it's a good workout for the arms -- I noticed that the cream mixture was finally starting to freeze. It was pretty cool, actually. I was super excited that I had made ice cream just from shaking a bag -- if only everything was that easy...spaghetti in a bag?

I carefully rinsed off my little baggie so the ice cream wouldn't melt -- because there was salt and water all over it -- and put the ice cream into a bowl. It was absolutely delicious, and it made so much more than I expected. It tasted just like ice cream from the store, only a little more work and a lot more fun :)


It's Been 14 Months?!

June 04, 2012
Little Boy turned 14 months old -- or 1 year and 2 months -- last Friday. It is amazing how much has changed in him since he turned 1 year old.

So fashionable: stripes, polka dots, and plaid!

1. He absolutely cannot get enough of being outside. He loves swinging on the swings and sliding down the slide at the park, and playing with a ball in the backyard.

2. He has gone from being unsteady on his feet to walking on small stones in the park, sand in the playground, and grass in the yard.

3. He has started listening to directions like "close the drawer, please" and "put it back, please".

4. He has gained more words. Not only is he able to say the classics like "mom", "dad" and "dog", but he's started saying "up", "again" and "all done". It just amazes me each time he says something new.

I know that there is so much more to come, and that the days will only get more exciting. I love being with my Little Boy. I love seeing all of the changes in him, but I also love knowing that he will always need a cuddle from his mama.

Happy Monday :)


Weight Update: The Food Journal

June 01, 2012
 Your BMR + calories burned - calories eaten = calories saved that day.

When I asked a friend of mine -- who is a body builder -- how to go about losing weight, he sent me a link that led me to this website. At first I was shocked to find out that I needed to save 3500 calories in order to lose one pound of weight. It seemed like a lot of work just for one little pound. A. Lot. But I quickly started learning about food journaling in order to keep track of how much I was actually eating.

I had heard about keeping a food journal before, but I never thought much of it. What I discovered on the first day of trying to lose weight, as you see in the image above, is that I am great at maintaining my weight, but not so much with the losing it. I have never had to lose weight before, and so it has been an entirely different world to me.

I quickly learned that I should be watching the portion size of my food, and what types of food I should be eating in order to stay full longer, lose weight, and stay healthy -- which is the most important thing. I have realised that I don't need to eat two tacos to be satisfied, one is enough, and although I become hungry a couple of hours after eating supper, I have started eating fruit and drinking a glass of water instead of eating ice cream and drinking a can of coke.

"Don't you miss the sweets?" You ask.

To be honest, not really. I guess it is just my time to do this, and I'm not going to stop until I get to my pre-pregnancy weight. I'm able to say no to certain things, but at the same time, I am able to say yes to them without going crazy. Yesterday afternoon, I ate two pieces of licorice, but, after that, I was satisfied and I didn't want any more. Last Saturday, I cut myself a small piece of cake, and after that -- you guessed it -- I was satisfied.

I find it so strange that I have such amazing will power at this moment, but, like I said earlier, I think it's just my time to do this, and my body and mind are working together to make it happen. Last Saturday, when I stepped on that wretched scale, I had already lost 3lbs. It felt so unbelievably good, amazing, fantastic, wonderful -- insert happy word here -- to see a different number, and know that my hard work is paying off. 

I'm not suffering, I'm learning how to take care of my body and become me again. I also know that I lost three of those bad boys that you see in the photo there. It's gross, I know, but it really helped me to visualise how much weight I actually lost.

I feel good! -- insert James Brown song.

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