Wednesday, November 30, 2016

Media Wednesday

Our last book club selection of the year was What Remains by Carole Radziwill.  This was my pick as I had heard good things about it.  Some of us in the group like to read at least one non-fiction book per year, although others prefer strictly fiction books.  This was sort of a compromise since it reads like a novel although it is a true story.

Carole grew up in a small town in New York State (Suffern, as a matter of fact, where Carrie went to Aidan's cottage for you Sex and the City fans), and worked for ABC news as a producer. There she met her husband Anthony who happened to be cousins with JFK Jr.  When John John married Carolyn Bessette, the four of them were the best of friends.  Anthony had cancer for the entire duration of their marriage and eventually died after five years.  He died three weeks after John and Carolyn died in the plane crash.  

I was originally interested in this because I loved JFK Jr. just like everyone else and was devastated when he died.  I'm not sure if this was going to be a sort of tell-all about the Kennedys but it wasn't at all.  John and Carolyn (and briefly Jackie) are characters in the book, and their loss is a central theme, but it is mostly a memoir about Anthony's cancer and their life around that.  I thought it was really well written and insightful about how people deal with cancer and death.  The Kennedy angle was an interesting background and I grasped onto any mention of them.  Parts are quite sad though, and so heartbreaking when they realize John's plane is missing and they are trying to track down what happened.  

We will be choosing our books for next year, so check in next week and I'll share our selections.  

Tuesday, November 29, 2016

Weekend Recap

What a busy weekend!!  We really packed in the activities.  On Friday however, Q and I had a little nap.  He had been napping in his crib but then woke up so I moved him over to our bed while I read a book.  

On Saturday morning we got up bright and early to make our way to Plant World to pick out our Christmas tree.

This was the extent of Q's participation.

Picking a good one!

Then a tour around their Christmas displays.  I always like to get something, so this year it was a gold metal tree (not this wooden reindeer).

I think E is old enough to have his own tree in his room this year!  This is the one we picked for him

After we got home, E and I went to Sportball.  It was "bring your parent" day so I participated with him and we learned football.  We are excited!!

Dave had the Christmas lights out when we got home so E jumped onto the ladder to help out. 

In the afternoon we went to a funeral for a little baby.  It was a sad service as you can imagine. We told his parents we wouldn't forget him so I wanted to make sure I mentioned it here so I will remember this was the weekend we celebrated his short life. 

I hugged my baby close when we got home (I am not crying in this photo, although that's sort of what it looks like and you may think so given the events of the afternoon). 

On Sunday morning, I slept in for a little bit and then it was up and off to church for the first Sunday of Advent, Hope.  After the service, E put his "wings" on and flew to the car. 

After lunch, and some cleaning up, we suited up, got a coffee and rode the subway downtown to do a little holiday exploring.  We stopped at City Hall, the Eaton Centre, the windows at Saks/The Bay (new this year!), and Yonge-Dundas Square.  We took lots of fun pictures!

We're downtown! (Cue all of the songs about being downtown)

The beautiful tree at the Eaton Centre, the pictures do not do it justice. 

Outside to see the windows. 

Then guess who we ran into?!?

The polar bears at Yonge-Dundas Square.

Then we walked over to our friend's condo. We have been friends since we were four and she recently moved to Toronto.  We had a nice visit and delicious meal

E has made himself at home with his snack of grapes.

I took this to send my mom when I was there, I guess I should have checked the background, oops, open dishwasher!

Thanks for making it to the end of this massive post!

Monday, November 28, 2016

Let's Talk - November

Today's topic is Christmas Traditions.

For the past couple of years we have hosted a Christmas party for our friends and neighbours, this will be our third year. It is one of my favourite new traditions.  We love seeing everyone, some of them we only see once a year so it is a special time.  

We send Christmas cards.

We get a real tree from Plant World.

We always go to church on Christmas Eve and the singing of Silent Night with candles has always been a favourite, particularly for remembering those who aren't with us any longer.

Another fairly new tradition is putting together our Rockefeller Centre puzzle before the end of Christmas Eve.
My family has always had lobster, and Dave's family likes it too, poor Dave is the only one who can't eat it.  We got oysters on Christmas Eve for the first time last year and I think that will be a new favourite tradition too. 

I think the most important things about traditions is that although is fun to do the same thing every year and make things special for that reason, we also need to remember that if we miss out on something for some reason that we don't get too disappointed about it and not let it ruin our whole holiday season.  Christmas should be more than a list of things that we need to do in order for it to be complete.  Christmas is more about the special times you spend with your loved ones, no matter what you're doing (or eating).

Our Christmas lights went up over the weekend - let the decorating begin!

Linking up with Andrea and Erika.

Friday, November 25, 2016

Friday Favourites

Linking up with AndreaErika and Narci for Friday Favourites.

Hanging out with moms and babies is a favourite.  I went to The Drake for Highchair Hangouts on Tuesday.  Q did this the whole time, which was quite pleasant.  The sandwich I ordered was amazing! If you are at the Drake for lunch order the eggplant sandwich, you will not be disappointed. After lunch I did some Christmas shopping at The Drake General Store.

I caught this little smile this week.  

On Wednesday it worked out that I could take E to T-ball.  I had just put lip glass on his dry lips and it stung so that is why he is not really smiling.  I have since cured (for now) his poor dry lips with this oil.

My sweet husband surprised me with these flowers, card, cupcakes, and Tiffany charm on Wednesday.  He gave me a Tiffany bracelet with E was born so now I have this charm to go on it. 

E has said he wants everything for Christmas - everything he sees on TV and everything in the toy catalogues that have come in the mail.  A friend at work said that her mother used to have her cut out what she wanted from the Wish Book but could only pick things that would fit on one piece of paper. So I took this idea for E.  This first pile are the things he didn't actually want and he still had to keep narrowing it down.  He did con me into letting him have two pieces of paper, one for Santa and one for the grandparents. 

Look at these two!  Q is napping and E is playing quietly by himself.  Definitely a favourite moment of my day. 

A friend of mine made us this tasty soup with lots of good stuff in it - kale, lentils, carrots, etc.  It was really colourful although this photo doesn't really do it justice. 

The Christmas decorations come out this weekend!! I'm looking forward to getting our house in order.