Tuesday, December 25, 2007

Christmas tunes

After reading The Idea Girl's blog about favourite Christmas songs I decided to post mine. This season - and I think every season - it's been O Holy Night. But a new one this year is O Little Town of Bethlehem. Specifically the first and third verses:

O little town of Bethlehem
How still we see thee lie
Above thy deep and dreamless sleep
The silent stars go by
Yet in thy dark streets shineth
The everlasting Light
The hopes and fears of all the years
Are met in thee tonight

How silently, how silently
The wondrous gift is given!
So God imparts to human hearts
The blessings of His heaven.
No ear may his His coming,
But in this world of sin,
Where meek souls will receive him still,
The dear Christ enters in.

I think the lyrics combined with the tune help me imagine and ponder the ancient and complex plan that was fulfilled in the birth of Christ over 2000 years ago. Amazing.

Sunday, December 23, 2007

blue baby

This is what "not buying presents for each other" looks like.
I left Noah's room with Jamie holding Noah to get something and came back to find a present on the change table. It said, "To Mommy From Noah". I had NO CLUE what it was. I opened it up to find this gorgeous little blue iPod Nano. SO CUTE.
What a tricky (but stinking amazing) husband I have.

Saturday, December 22, 2007


Baking up a storm - I love Christmas baking!

Thumbprint cookies. A new recipe for me this year and I think this might be one of my favourites!

Cheese Stars. This is the fourth year I've made these and they are definitely a Christmas tradition and favourite. Especially with a glass of red wine!

Kris Kringle Cookies. Packed with white chocolate, cranberries and pecans, this new recipe is sure to be a favourite - as long as you've got a sweet tooth!

I'm missing a picture of the chewy ginger cookies. This is the second year I've made them and I love them. Perfectly round and crinkled and chewy...mmm....so Christmasey.

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

good reads

I'm on the hunt for some new and good reads.
Here are the books I've put on reserve from my handy public library:
The Birth House by Ami McKay
Haroun and the Sea of Stories by Salman Rushdie
The Girlfriends Guide to Surviving the first year of Motherhood by Vicki Lovine
The Modern Mom's guide to Dad's by Hogan Hilling
I don't know how she does it by Allison Pearson
A Thousand Splendid Suns by Khaled Hosseini
This is your brain on music by Daniel Levitin

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

when the going gets rough

Why doesn't anyone tell you how hard parenting is? Is it that they DO tell you but you just are too naive to listen? Or believe them? Or is it that because you're basking in all your pregnant glory that no one wants to tell you what you're really in for?
Is that what, "Your life is really going to change." REALLY means? Sleepless nights? Sleep deprivation? Endless crying? Heartbreak and frustration and confusion and doubt?
Parenting is by far the hardest thing I have ever done/been through and I'm feeling tired.
I love the little guy so much but dang it's hard. And I'm just hanging on here praying that it gets easier.

Sunday, December 16, 2007


Just knowing it kills germs is enough to make me want to vacuum every single day.

the real meaning of Christmas

The other day I was explaining Christmas to Noah. When it came to presents and why we give gifts I got a little stuck. The more I thought about it, the more saddened I was with how much getting "stuff" has taken over what Christmas is all about. It's become all about giving your list of things you want and people making sure they don't get you something you already have or getting you something someone else is going to get you and gift receipts and buying presents and ENOUGH presents for some people because you know they're going to get you lots of presents and mad rushes in the mall and sales and commercials that make you think you NEED an iPod, Nintendo Wii, new pair of jeans from Old Navy, video phone, new car.
It's sad.
I'm glad I got to explain to Noah (even though he didn't understand at all) the true meaning of Christmas because it was a good reminder for me. It was good to refocus on something that isn't going to be outdated, too small or broken in a year or two.

Monday, December 10, 2007


Well this is it. Our first Christmas picture as a family. I'm actually quite proud of it. I set up the camera on our tripod and hit the timer and ran to join Jamie and Noah. After about 5 or 6 shots we came out with this one. Not too shabby!
It's a bit surreal to look at this picture and think, "This is my family. My husband. My son. Our first Christmas together."
I guess this is the first of many more Strickland family Christmas pictures to come.
I'm not sure if you ever can be fully ready to begin your own family...but I think I'm as ready as I'll ever be.

Sunday, December 2, 2007

childhood dreams

When I was a kid I always wanted to be a singer or an actor. Or both.

I used to make up songs and tape them on this little Fisher Price tape recorder we had that came with a microphone.
If I could open my mouth and sing and have it sound like anyone in the world I would have the voice of Mariah Carey. Today I was listening to "O Holy Night" and got shivers when she jumped like 3 octaves and hit the clearest note you've ever heard. It was beautiful. I still almost cry when I watch a musical or a soloist. My heart lurches and longs to be up on stage.

My sister and I would make up plays (I would actually write scripts) and recruit all the kids in our townhouse and we would perform them for our neighbours. (We would actually go up and down the hall way, knocking on doors and inviting people to come to the foyer and watch our stellar performances) Later on I would audition for major parts in every single church play we had. I did have quite a few major (and minor) roles and later on joined the drama team at our church.
The same thing happens to me (I almost cry and my heart lurches) when I see a play and someone is giving a monologue or a particularly intense scene.

But I doubt I will ever be a professional singer or actor.
And if I had to choose between the two I would definitely be a singer.
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