chapters picks

Wednesday, February 29, 2012

After my weekly Monday lunchtime yoga, I stopped off for a latte and blueberry bar at Starbucks at Chapters and got sidetracked by all the fun things in the store right now... I'm not a big fan of apologizing for poor pics all the time, but it's warranted here: I was using my poor 'ol BlackBerry. Here's what I found:

Cute eh? Happy Leap Year Day!

a menu from pinterest

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Over the weekend, I found an ebook I've been slightly obsessed with since called One Bite at a Time by Simple Mom Author & Blogger Tsh Oxenreider. She goes through 52 projects (some bigger than others) that will help you simplify your life. I'll be honest, I don't feel that overwhelmed about things in general (I know, I know, wait 'til I have two kids!), but I just love reading about organizing (I could definitely use some organizing ideas) and life tips in general.

One of the bites (no pun intended!) she offers is around meal planning. I've tried this before, but haven't really stuck with it. My main goal for doing this is to get our food spending under control. I feel like I spend a lot on food.

Tsh mentioned that she goes through her Pinterest food board for menu planning ideas, so I thought I'd have a little fun with that this week.

Here's what I did: Every week, I get a fruit & veggie box delivered to my door, so I waited for the email to tell me what I was getting in my box; then went to my food board on Pinterest to see what I could find to make as part of my meal plan. The goal here is to only get what I need for these particular recipes at the grocery store. I tend to keep a good bulk of pantry items so I also considered those items in my search.

After I found a dish, I added it to my google calendar to keep track of what I'm making. I also added reminders about other things I need to do the day before like soak beans for the quinoa wraps and the sweet potato burgers.

Here's the menu I came up with for the week:

Whole roast chicken, potatoes and 'The Best Broccoli of your life'

Southwestern Quinoa Wrap with a salad. We have some leftover chicken from last night so I'll add some of that to the wraps tonight.

Lemon Quinoa Cilantro Chickpea Salad with pork loin chops

Sweet Potato Veggie Burgers with Avocado & mixed green salad

Gnocchi With Roasted Cauliflower
Source: via Stephanie on Pinterest

I realize this all may seem a bit nerdy, but honestly I felt more organized the minute I started working on it. Now I know I have everything in the house to make these menu items so I don't have to stress about what to make as the dinnertime draws closer. Plus, who doesn't love an excuse to go to Pinterest? ;)

How about you - have you found any good tips when it comes to meal planning?

dream room

Monday, February 27, 2012

When it comes to finding a dream room, honestly I never know what I'm looking for in totality. I love certain aspects of some rooms, and certain aspects in other rooms.

I think this is the room. I have no idea why - it just spoke to me.

Yes I know that is extremely cheesy.

And it's all white & beige which is very impractical to have with kids. But I just love this room. It feels rustic and modern at the same time, while super comfy.

Man my tastes have changed over the past few years!


Friday, February 24, 2012

Last week, we took a little trip to hang out with my husband's parents in Florida. It was our first trip with Leo and honestly, I was expecting the worst on the plane, but he was great. He loved seeing the clouds and also, when we were close enough, the houses etc. below. Also, we were able to keep him happy with a few iPad apps and some rice crackers we brought along :).

If I can give any advice for traveling, it would be to rent baby stuff! We ended up renting everything we needed for the trip including a crib (Leo does not sleep well overnight in a Pack n' Play), a booster seat for eating and a car seat, so we didn't have to lug it along on the plane. The only thing we brought with us was our stroller. This was honestly the best decision we made for the trip.

Here are some shots from the week:

Family shot!

Looking cool in momma's shades
Pizza dinner at the beach to see the sun set!
Attempt at a self shot!

Checking out the waves
Swimming with Daddy

Have a fantastic weekend!


Thursday, February 23, 2012

I just read this post over at Sometimes Sweet and I thought it was a neat idea so here it goes! (By the way, her adorable little Henry is just four hours younger than Leo!).

Obsessing over:
I don't think there is anything I'm really obsessing over at the moment, but that's not to say that I haven't obsessed over something...or someone... in the past. For example, I once obsessed over Colin Farrell. A little too much. I think part of it had something to do with the fact that his birthday is the same as my husband's. I don't know what that has to do with anything, but in a weird way they kind of look alike (short, brown hair, brown eyes) and I probably blacked out and thought that maybe I was married to Colin Farrell. Ya...must have been on cheap crack at the time. Anyway, my sister worked on a film this past summer with him and it turns out that his birthday isn't even the same day. What the eff.

Working on:
I just got finished working on a sh*t load of laundry. But in general, I'm working on sewing pillows and also purging. I can't really stand having a lot of needless stuff around even though I find it's everywhere. So a few weeks ago I organized some of my cupboards, I've gone through my clothes to give to Goodwill and I'm just generally throwing out stuff I don't use (or using up what I've got before I get more).

Personally, I'm also working on being a little more patient. I'm weird in a way because I have tons of patience for some things (like waiting 10 years to marry my husband!), but for others things I'm SUPER impatient. It usually comes to other peoples' decision making. I hate waiting for others to make decisions. So ya... working on that.

Thinking about:
(me @ 16 weeks)

My growing belly! I'm four months pregnant this week and can't believe that in August I'll have another little one to care for around here. Leo will likely be entering his terrible twos right at that time so I'll be sure to be a busy momma!

(Look at that face!)

I'm also thinking about how much Leo has changed in just this past week. Mark's mom taught him to quack like a duck and sing "EIEI" from Old Macdonald Had a Farm... He's also doing some motions to Itsy Bitsy Spider and Ring Around the Rosy. He isn't walking yet, but he did take his first few steps this week too. Mark's been bribing him with cherrios to walk and it's been working! He's at such a fun age.

My 19 week ultrasound next month to find out if we're having a boy or a girl!

Listening to:
Please see part two of "Thinking about".

(By the way, this video is horrible!)

Grapes and tea. In general, I'm getting back on track after being away on vacation. There I ate some yummy seafood pasta, steak, pizza, a burger and chips.

Right now I've been wishing that everyone understood the true value of eating whole foods and using green cleaning supplies on a regular basis. I guess that could be one thing that I do kind of obsess over. I made a lot of changes several years ago to change the way I eat, change the way I clean and change what types of things I put onto my body. My husband says I come off snobby sometimes, which I honestly don't mean to do, it's just that in my brain it makes logical sense to be this way. Sure I still eat certain things and do certain things that don't fall into this category, but on the whole I have worked hard to decrease the crappy toxins in my life (and there's still so much room for improvement!), that for some reason, are allowed to be in everyday things. Just something that I'm constantly wishing and thinking about.

Well I guess that's what's currently going on around here!? What are you currently doing?

chair swap

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

(still need to figure out those darn cords!)

I decided to do a bit of a chair swap yesterday. I moved my new basement office chair to my upstairs office because it's the room that gets the most light for picture taking, and I really like the look of the chair in there now! Oh what to do? I think I'll keep it up there for now since it's on the main floor.

This is what was here before - I think it's a change for the better, no?

new pillows.

Monday, February 20, 2012

Before I took off for vacation, I made six pillows (made from two different fabrics) to put up in my shop.

I had fun working with the fabrics I got from Spoonflower although I'm still pretty disappointed with the way the darker colours I ordered came out in the wash (which is why you don't see any dark colours here!). I'll have to figure out what to do with those.

Until then, you can get more info on these pillows on my FB page; I've decided to offer them over there first before I put them up on etsy.

Have a great day!


Sunday, February 19, 2012

We got home today from a week in Florida and the house is a mess. I could have sworn we cleaned it before we left.... I guess that's what unpacking and a million loads of laundry will do to you.

Oh and I took this pic the week before I left. I'm 15 weeks now (14 in the pic I guess) and I already look like I'm 5 months pregnant. I guess the second really does show up quicker! Damn (lack of) abs ;).

Happy Family Day to those who have the day off!

Update - I guess I'm 16 weeks pregnant now, not 15, so apparently your brain fries a bit faster in the second pregnancy as well. Thank goodness for BabyCenter!

it's all for the kids

Thursday, February 09, 2012

I've been seeing the cutest kids clothes around the 'nets over the past little while. Here are a few things that really caught my eye:

Adorable coat

Source: via Samantha on Pinterest

black and grey goodness

Sweet grey garb

cozy stripes

Source: via Shay on Pinterest

there are no words for this cuteness

winter wonderland wear

sweet gold slippers

10 things

Monday, February 06, 2012

Just for fun, I decided today was a good day to share 10 things about myself here on this little 'ol blog that you may not have known about me:

1. I lived on a dairy farm until I was nine (and then again on a different dairy farm for a year when I was 15) and now don't really drink milk (I drink the odd latte because, well, they're good even though they make me feel a bit icky after...).

2. I have a serious soft spot for chips, popcorn, candy and buttered toast.

3. I probably eat about two huge bowls of popcorn a week. I air pop it and eat it with olive oil and salt.

4. I haven't owned a microwave for about five years - I do miss it sometimes, but when it comes down to it, it hasn't been bad at all.

5. I have to make my bed every day.

6. Reading a book is a bit like being on drugs for me (not that I was ever on drugs!!!) - I always have to have a book on the go, otherwise I feel like I'm going into withdrawal.

7. According to my husband, I like things "a certain way." This is true I guess. I always have to rearrange the dishwasher and I kind of like things in straight lines and angles.

8. I was born with a cleft lip and worry about my babies having one as well (or cleft palate!).

9. I watched too many action movies as a child and frequently expect crazy things to happen when I'm out. I expect bombs to go off, banks to be robbed, cars to crash... you know, that kind of stuff.

10. The day I met my husband, I was dressed like Sporty Spice for a scavenger hunt during frosh week. We didn't start dating until two years later (I think he was a bit scarred by my outfit).

Ok that's it! And just because I like to have photos around here, I thought I'd share a super-cute photo of a reading nook I found today:

Happy Monday!

around the house - new stuff in the basement

Thursday, February 02, 2012

Slowly but surely we've been adding things here and there to the basement to make it feel a bit more homey. (It's so tough to take pics in the basement - even with all the lights on and using a tripod! My camera is a bit sick right now though too so that might have something to do with the darkness... I digress.)

We started a little gallery wall with a framed photo gift of my sister-in-law and her family (these are the best gifts!) and some Goodwill frames I picked up and sprayed black...

My little desk nook is getting it together. I found a chair at Homesense that I liked - simple but comfy and perfect for the space. Come to think of it, I found the lamp and the bulletin board there too!

I picked up the little cups at Chapters for my pens, rulers and odds 'n sodds. I put some chalk in the crystal mini-vase for the chalkboard on the other side of the room. I'm also sewing in the basement so I'm keeping my scissors and pins here too!

I think I'm going to put this fabric on the bulletin board. And see that weird framed thing under the bulletin board? It's some sort of old metal stencil we found during renos of our house so I framed it!

Finally, the biggest reveal of all - Leo's play area! It has kind of taken over this side of the basement which is fine. I like having a spot that Leo can go to to hang out and it's been a great spot for all the kids we know. I try to have colouring pages on the table so anytime kids come over, they have something to do.

That's it for now y'all! Happy Thursday!
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