Friday, January 29, 2016

Friday Favourites

Linking up with AndreaErika and Narci for Friday Favourites.

My favourite things this week are:

Visits with friends
One of my oldest friends was in town this week for a conference and was able to come over to eat supper with us on Monday night.  When I think back, although we haven't seen each other a lot in the past few years, Kirsten and I spent a lot of time together starting when we were four years old.  A lot of good times have been shared with this girl.  I didn't take any photos, but here is a good one of us from Grade 12. 

Sick days
Poor little E was sick this week and we kept him home from school on Tuesday.  He slept in and then spent some time on the couch.  Although it isn't fun being sick, there is something special about being home during the day and resting.

I made this lasagna for our supper this week. I made the meat sauce on Sunday night, assembled it on Monday night and then finally baked it and ate it on Tuesday night.

Super Bowl
After my beloved Packers lost in OT I was not very excited to watch the Super Bowl this year.  But then Peyton beats Brady (or, sorry Peyton, the Broncos beat the Patriots), and then my boy Cam Newton destroys the Cardinals and now all of a sudden I'm interested again.  It's old school Peyton versus the new QB style player Cam. 

Field Trips
I am going to the ROM today with E's class.  I've never been there so I'm excited to see the dinosaurs and everything else.  The school is always asking for volunteers for their various events and I can never go; I was glad I could take the day off to attend this trip.

Happy Friday

Thursday, January 28, 2016

February Goals

Here were my goals for January, and this is how I did:

1. Put away the Christmas decorations and tidy up the storage space. It is tidier than it was, even if it's not perfect.

2. Make eye appointments for E and me and get myself some new glasses.  Done, done and done.

3. Read my book club book.  I finished that early in the month.  I wrote about it yesterday.

4. Invite some friends over for a playdate.  We met some friends for skating a couple of weeks ago and then they came back for supper.  And I didn't take any photos :(

5. Write some handwritten thank you notes.  Done.

6. Clean out my drawers and fold my shirts the Konmari way.  This has not happened yet, but maybe this weekend; I still have a few days left in January.

My goals for February are:

1. Learn how to poach an egg.  I love poached eggs but I've never tried making them myself.

(This is from Baka)

2. Get some Valentine's Day cards for E's classmates and some to mail out.

3. Decorate for Valentine's Day and maybe even attempt a craft with E.

4. Pick up a rug for our living room.

5. Frame the paintings we got in Barcelona.

6. Plan some summer camps for E and our vacation time.  Camp schedules and descriptions come out next week and then we can register for them at the end of the month.

(oh, and organize my drawers if I don't get to it in the next couple of days!)

Wednesday, January 27, 2016

What's up Wednesday

Linking up with Shay and Sheaffer for What's up Wednesday.

What we're eating this week...
Sunday - Homemade Macaroni and Cheese
Monday - Baked Chicken Tacos
Tuesday - Lasagna
Wednesday - Leftovers
Thursday - Sausage and Broccoli Soup
Friday - not sure yet

What I'm reminiscing about...
Someone mentioned the 2010 Olympic Gold Medal Hockey Game so I went back and watched the call on YouTube.  It still gives me goosebumps! The Golden Goal.

What I'm loving...
My new glasses!  They are from Bailey Nelson.  I haven't had new glasses since before we moved to Toronto and they weren't a style that I wanted to wear anymore.  So although I will probably still wear my contacts most days, I am glad I have a pair of glasses I can wear more often.

What we've been up to...
Trying to eat healthy and exercise. Dave has been doing much better at this than I have.

What I'm dreading...
Trying to figure out what to do with E for the summer.  We have to cover 9 weeks of summer holidays, and we need to plan summer camps and our own holidays.

What I'm working on...
I'd like to go away for a weekend this winter so I'm starting to think of where we could go and whether E will come with us or if we will need some childcare.
Maybe Drake Devonshire ?

What I'm excited about...
Our basement is really going to start taking shape this month.  The electricians come in the next couple of days and then the foam insulators and then Dave can do the drywall.  Soon it will be time to pick out tiles, paint colours, flooring, etc.

What I'm watching/reading...
We are watching The Wire finally. We are in Season 2.  We are also watching Downton Abbey and The X-Files.  I am watching The Bachelor, of course!

Our book club meets tonight and this month we read All the Lights we Cannot See.  This will definitely be one of my favourite books of the year.  It is about World War II but it covers different aspects of it than I've read before - occupied France and a young German solider.  It is written in a way that I like and keeps me engaged - short chapters that alternate between stories.  Definitely recommended reading.

What I'm listening to...
There has been an absence of birds in our yard this year. I used to see a cardinal at least once a week, but I haven't seen any.  I have heard some birds singing the past couple of mornings so they are out there somewhere.  I'd love to put out some bird feeders but we have so many squirrels (and raccoons) that those critters steal all of the seeds.
The only birds I've seen this winter

What I'm wearing...
A lot of grey and black, and that's okay. I add in my orange blazer and a colourful scarf every once in awhile. 

What I'm doing this weekend...
Taking the day off on Friday to accompany E's class to the Royal Ontario Museum. 
Skiing on Saturday and skating on Sunday; taking advantage of winter!

What I'm looking forward to next month...
Valentine's Day, Family Day holiday, the Oscars, more skiing.

What else is new... 
 I finally saw Star Wars and it was great.  It was really well done, I liked all of the characters, I'm excited for the next one, and I caught onto most of the throwbacks that they threw in.
What is your favourite Valentine's Day treat... 
Anything with pink and red heart sprinkles and icing.  I'm definitely going to make these cookies again, and maybe some cupcakes.

Thanks for checking in!

Tuesday, January 26, 2016

Let's Talk - January

Here is a new link up series where we talk about different things each month... 

This will usually be on the last Monday of each month but this month it is on Tuesday because of scheduling reasons.  See the list of what we'll be chatting about this year.

This year, instead of making some general resolutions, I'm going to set monthly goals that centre around being organized, connecting with friends and family, and our health.  You can see my January goals here.  I will follow up with my progress as the end of each month.  

Usually resolutions are centred around More and Less:

healthy eating, exercise, family time, organization, sleep, water, playdates, kindness, prayers

yelling, alcohol, TV, work, social media, wasting time, negativity

Regardless of all of the improvements that we could be making, I think it's still important to take it easy on yourself.  It is sort of cliched but it still works, "to everything there is a season" (Pete Seeger or Ecclesiastes, whichever you prefer).  Sometimes you will be really good at spending time with certain people, and sometimes you'll go awhile without seeing or talking to them; sometimes you'll hit your stride with organizing your life, and other times everything will seem like a struggle.  If you keep it in mind that "this too shall pass" you'll both appreciate the good seasons, and also feel better about the bad seasons. 

I'm looking forward to both improving myself but also being comfortable with who I am. 

Monday, January 25, 2016

Weekend Recap

 We are getting into a bit of a routine for skiing and this week we got there in lots of time and didn't forget anything.  Next week we may attempt a coffee/hot chocolate by the fire in the lodge before starting our day.  It was cold but we were ready to go.

All the layers.

Beautiful day with lots of snow and sunshine.  Best conditions so far this year. 

After E's lessons, we took him up on the chair lift with us, and then Dave took him one more time.  He's pretty good but you can't help but picture him flying into the woods when he gets going too fast. Then we headed inside to get some lunch before going home.
E had been invited to a friend's house for the afternoon so Dave and I got to go to the movies!! We saw Star Wars in 3D.  Dave saw it last month but this was my first time seeing it.  It was good and it was a treat to go out for a movie date.

Why is the theatre always freezing?!

So needless to say we were all tired on Saturday night, E went to bed as soon as we got home, and then Dave and I watched a couple of episodes of The Wire.  We are into the second season now. 

On Sunday morning, we followed our usual pattern of pancakes and TV.  I planned our menu for the week, Dave got ready for his run and then E and I went to church.  After lunch Dave went out with some friends to watch football (Go Anyone but the Patriots Broncos!) and attend the Raptors game.  E and I walked over to the neighbourhood park to skate.  It was nice to be able to walk to this little rink and the neighbourhood volunteers are doing a great job!
Because we walked I didn't bring a chair for him to hold on to, but he doesn't really need it.  Slowly but surely he makes it around the ice and is learning how to keep his balance. 

Also encouraging him to get up on his own, although I lent him a hand most of the time. 

Yay for being outside!

After skating and groceries we hung out on the couch and watched several episodes of Daniel Tiger's Neighbourhood.  E had a cough all day and I could tell he was tired so he went to bed very early with medicine, Vicks, and humidifier.  He didn't even ask for a story. 

Then I watched some TV, made some suppers for the week, and folded laundry.

Ingredients for meat sauce for a lasagna. Not shown, the bacon, because why wouldn't you include bacon in lasagna?!

Have a good week everyone!

Friday, January 22, 2016

Friday Favourites

Linking up with AndreaErika and Narci For Friday Favourites.

Our tulips are still going strong and adding some colour to this winter.

I love eating oatmeal for breakfast, and I found a new favourite combination.  Peaches (frozen), coconut and almonds.  Very tasty!

This is a cute video of kids commenting on American Woman and Hotline Bling.  Some of these kids have some personality!

We went to our favourite neighbourhood pub yesterday for supper after E's eye appointment. 

E says, "Order me the dino buddies and I'll play golf".

I know there has been a lot of controversy about the Oscars but I am excited about two of my favourites actors are nominated - Rachel and Leo!

Happy Friday!

Thursday, January 21, 2016

Healthy Eating

I read something the other day that when you want to be healthy and lose weight that exercise is only 20% and eating is 80%.  I can't remember where I read it, so I can't back this statement up with any sort of authority, but to follow up on my post yesterday, here are some "rules" for eating I made up a few years ago that I'm going to try and employ over the next few weeks (as an aside, these rules were in a notebook I had when E was first born and I had to keep track of breastfeeding and dirty diapers.  There were also lists of things to do and packing lists for our trips that first year.  Memories!  End aside):

Eat only things that have some nutritional benefit.  That basically means don't eat processed food, etc.

No butter on bread or toast.

Drink only water, milk or coffee with milk (no sugar or cream in coffee).  Drink lots of water.

No cookies, cake, or chips.  Permitted treats are plain popcorn and small dark chocolate squares.

No beer or mixed drinks.  Wine only and limit number of glasses.

Breakfast choices - Ryvita crackers with natural peanut butter, fruit, protein shakes, eggs, oatmeal with nuts and fruit.

Lunch - Eat smaller portions. Bring healthy snacks like fruit and nuts so I won't come home starving in the evenings.  If eating out, replace french fries with salad, or no side at all.

Supper - Make food from scratch, limit high calorie sauces, cheese, etc.  Eat meatless meals at least once a week.  Eat a lot of vegetables.

Limit nighttime snacking, drink tea or hot water with lemon and ginger instead.

See also this post about my review of the documentary Fed Up and some other healthy eating choices.

Wednesday, January 20, 2016

Fitness Routine

Okay, enough of this hibernation that has taken hold of me since Christmas, it is time to make a plan and put together a workout routine.  I have a lot of excuses for not working out yet:

Our basement is under construction so I haven't wanted to work out in the dust.

It is too cold to run outside.

It is too dark and cold in the morning to get out of bed before I have to.

I'm waiting for the yoga studio to open by my house.

and the most accurate excuse of all, I don't want to.

To that, my reasonable self replies:

I can workout in the living room, and I've asked Dave to set up his bike so I can watch TV while exercising.

It's not always too cold, Dave does it all the time.

I can also work out in the evenings.

The yoga studio will open soon, but even when it does, that won't be the only workout solution so I still need to get into the habit of doing other things.

Too bad. 

I'm taking a page out of Jillian's book to get motivated to work out, see her blog post about that here.  My favourite tip of hers is to schedule your work out time.  When you know it's coming up, then you're less likely to back out. When I knew I was going to run every other day in the summer, I was able to plan ahead for my run even when I knew I had an early morning meeting or an event in the evening.  

I will also start small, so I'm going to plan week by week and changing it up each day.

Today - Evening - Dave can take E to swimming and I can come home early.  Supper will be ready in the slow cooker so I will have at least 45 minutes to work out before they get home.  

Thursday - Morning - Bike - Workout with weights and kettle bell

Friday - Evening - Countdown Workout

Saturday - Morning - Skiing 

Sunday - Afternoon - Skating or run outside

Monday - Evening - Bike while watching The Bachelor

Tuesday - Morning - A workout from my Women's Health magazine that I got in my stocking. 

Now to put these in calendar so I can keep these appointments with myself.