Friday, July 27, 2012

friday links!

jamie's family is visiting right now.
they got in late tuesday night and the boys have been loving the attention and each morning they ask to wake up "Nana & Popi & Auntie Erin". it's sweet.
the boys have also been enjoying and exploring daddy's new iPad. i think noah may be addicted. we may have to crack out the timer to regulate usage. but for the most part it's been fun to have a new "toy" around. it's amazing the amount of apps there are out there! if anyone has any recommendations {for mamas, kiddos or daddy's}, i'd love to hear about them!

friday links!

i have scoured the interwebs watching adorable pregnancy announcements and looking at cute photography ways to announce pregnancy, but this is probably the cutest video i have ever seen to announce a pregnancy.

and my friend, beth {the same awesome friend who came to visit me!}, sent me this video via twitter and i gotta say, she knows me well. i loved it. kids who tell stories + people who make them a reality = awesomeness.

last week i wrote about making life lists, and then this week i found this great free printable for making a visible life list - more like a bucket list, but you can use it however you choose!

i just can't get enough of reece's peanut butter cups. just....YUM.

i will be 35 weeks pregnant tomorrow. just started feeling like my feet were getting a bit tired and puffy, but not really noticeable by how they look, more just how they're starting to feel. anyway, i didn't bring any of my heels with me to uganda, but these? i love. and want. i'm slightly obsessed with wedges.

sunday is jude's birthday party and i'm excited! we'll have a bunch of kids and some friends {and family!} to celebrate with and the boys ask every day how many "sleeps" 'til the party. no doubt there will be many pictures taken, delicious food eaten and probably a blog post about it all.
enjoy your weekend, folks!

Friday, July 20, 2012

friday links

hello friday! how did you get here so quickly?

4 more days until my in-laws come for a visit! we're all really excited and our guest house {i know, right? we have a guest house. crazy.} is freshly painted and mostly done being cleaned.

i started picking up a few things for jude's birthday party {next sunday!} and making lists of things we'll need and eat. he's very adamant that he is having a monster truck birthday party so i'm going to do my best. the main thing is the cake, right? most three year olds aren't too concerned with games, i don't think, so mostly it'll just be friends and family and yummy food {i let him pick out some candy today; he picked "bananas in pajamas" and gummy worms} and probably some sort of monster truck play area set up with ramps and whatnot in our sandbox. good times!

right now i'm attempting to read my bible and spend time with Jesus and let him calm my heart and speak to my soul before jude's nap is over and noah's quiet time ends. 

but first, some links for your perusal:

i stumbled across this article and loved it. it's more than just making a bucket list. and i love making lists. now the question is, do i get a small notebook for each list? or have one notebook that contains all my lists? {i love notebooks!}

this is such a cute idea. i love that you can do this craft with bottle caps like we have here {from the glass bottles} or in the ones on the plastic bottles back in canada. my kids would love this!

yesterday the boys and i {okay, mainly just me, but the boys were there and started, i just helped them finish} coloured some flags and the olympic rings to get into the olympic spirit! i used this fantastic website to print off the country flags and some are up on our wall. some have yet to be coloured. i am thinking of also making some sort of cookie or cupcake olympic rings similar to this.

and speaking of sweet things, how amazing does this recipe look? rocky road. mmmm. the boys would love this. okay, i would too. but shhh.

and lastly, i spent a good hour or two last night researching car seats online last night. you see, back in canada, we have a kia spectra 5 that still belongs to us. we have no desire to upgrade to a bigger car just because we'll have three kids when we return {for various reasons}. so i've been trying to find the most narrow car seats on the market. it's kinda like one of those crazy brain-teaser puzzles. there's an answer {i think}, it just takes a bit to figure it out.
i think i have found my solution and will probably blog about it when we get back {as i can't really try anything out just yet or give pros & cons, it's all in theory.} but if you've fit three car seats {technically we will only need 1 car seat and 2 booster seats, and also i can only buy canadian car seats or ones approved to be used in canada, just FYI} in the back of a smaller car, i'd love to hear from you!

that's all for now, friends.
happy weekend!

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

one blessed mama

i'm not sure if it's some sort of instinctual pregnancy thing {like nesting} that makes me want to scoop up my children and love on them in a way that seems to say,

life is going to change for our family. it won't just be the four of us anymore. someone else is coming into our lives and he's going to require a lot of my time and energy but that doesn't mean i'm going to love you any less.

noah's been more cuddly lately. or maybe i've just been more attuned to his needs. whatever the reason, tonight while we cuddled in the dark with no power he had some questions about the baby and i braced myself for questions like, will you stop loving me? or why weren't you happy with just us? but they never come. instead questions like, will you read to baby b, too?

yes, i answer. he'll listen to the same stories i read to you and jude.

and when you and daddy got married, was i not born yet?

i say, no. you weren't born yet. you and jude came a few years later.

i love how my sweet noah is so tender-hearted. so interested in babies and kids. so thoughtful in his questions. so accepting of this new life coming into our family.

at dinner time, jamie shows the boys his wedding ring and says that the ring means that he's married to me.
jude pipes up with, one day, i'm going to marry you all by myself!

i am one blessed mama.

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

this kid

this crazy monkey. my almost 3 year old.

this morning he ran to the bathroom {hooray for boys who potty train quickly!} and i heard him yelling,


then a minute later he runs out and says,

mom, i told the poopies to get out, but they wouldn't. 

he cracks me up on a daily basis.
my life is full of laughter if i'm willing to open my eyes to see it and roll with the punches.

Friday, July 13, 2012

lucky friday links

i'm not superstitious. at all, really. but it is friday the 13th. i think i like that it's friday the 13th mostly because it doesn't happen too often.

2 more sleeps until jamie gets home!

this morning we had some friends over and played and read books and danced to disney songs. i love that i have a couple really sweet friends here. i am so thankful for how God's shown His love to me in this way over the past year.

we all had a little lay-down after they left, then cleaned up and now the boys are sitting watching the lion king. i'm thinking about what to make tonight. i was planning on doing my usual friday night = pizza night but i have no cheese. might be pb & j or whatever else i can scrounge up.

last saturday we went to mishmash but my bagel lady wasn't there. nor was the tortilla chip lady. sad times. so we'll try again tomorrow.

i posted this picture on facebook the other day and a friend commented that soon enough i'll have 3 little musketeers! crazy.

here are some fun friday links for ya!

i don't even remember how i found this link, but when i did, i almost died a sweet, sugary death as i imagined how delicious this dip would taste. yum. dessert. dip. make this. i made a tiny version of it for myself the other night. it was perfect. if you can't go camping, why not have some of the benefits? :)

and then there's the whole phenomenon of fruit & vegetable chips. here's a fantastic site that give tons of options {beet chips? kale?} with possible seasoning combinations.

and this? i am absolutely and completely in love with. every child's {and maybe a few adults, too} dream backyard hideaway. and they made it all. did you have a tree house in your backyard growing up? a fort? we had these oversized bushes on the corner of our townhouse property that had an empty space in the middle for us kids to have secret club meetings or create booby traps in. sweet memories, right there.

and this is a blog i'm crushing on right now. she's cute. and she sews. {just like how i will one day. right? right.} and it's a pretty blog. check it.

and these? genius. they're cheap and chemical free! i think they'd be perfect to give in a little "get-well" porch fairy gift. and also just to have for you and the kiddos when you've got the sniffles. if i can find the essential oils here, i might try and make them here. otherwise they're on the "to-do" list in about a year's time.

and for my Toronto friends and readers, you need to go here. please. just go. now. {donuts. chicken. need i say more?}

enjoy your weekend!

Thursday, July 12, 2012

fun and free resources for kids at home!

this morning involved
listening to disney songs and feeling our bodies move to the music.
exercise {for me} on the stationary bike and reading under the tuscan sun.
a brief quiet play time for the boys in their room {and a subsequent mess of cars, blocks and books covering both their beds.}
a relatively unmessy but definitely poopy accident by jude.
laundry {both washing and folding}.
a free, fun and educational activity that suited both my boys' learning levels.

this free printable can be found here  {a fantastic site. check it out!} and is all about matching colours and words in an ice cream store!
i decided to split the activity into two - noah's involved matching popsicles to the correct colour word and he really enjoyed sounding out the colours and trying to find words that matched {or at least matched the first letter}.

noah decided he wanted to tape his popsicles down after matching them to the correct words.

jude's sheet involved matching up the right ice cream scoop to the cone with the same colour on the top. i hadn't planned on this happening, but both activities fit where the boys are at exactly.

and jude decided that he wanted to glue his scoops onto the sheet.

this was a really simple and easy activity to do with both my kids and teaches about colours and fine motor skills {or at least, it ended up doing that as both wanted to affix their "cold treats" to the paper}.
and they focused on an activity.
for all of about 10 minutes.

some other great resources for fun learning that we make the most of in our house are:

we give books - a free, online library of books that you can read to your kids just like you would a book. not as great as holding a book, but when libraries are limited {as they are here} it's a fantastic opportunity to read, read, read! my boys' current favourites are big, red lollipop {the same book we took out at a library in guelph and loved back then, too!} and max's chocolate chicken.

starfall - i mentioned this in another post, but it's a great, free website that teaches kids all about letters, phoenetics, and reading in a simple but fun way. i think it's cute to see noah maneuver the mouse and click away and hear him echo the sounds of letters.

robert munsch's free audiobooks - when i found out almost all the robert munsch books are available as audiobooks for free online, i immediately set to work downloading all of them. now it's noah's most requested thing to listen to during his afternoon quiet time. i love that he knows so many of the books i grew up reading and it's super cute to hear him reciting along with the story.

then of course there's the millions of fantastic websites and blogs that can be found by googling or looking on pinterest. my next plan is to make up some quiet time bins or bags for noah and jude that i can vary throughout the week. stay tuned for some fun ideas for that!

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

the miracle of learning

it's amazing to watch your child learn a new skill.
this past year if we were in canada, noah would have been {probably} in junior kindergarten at a public school. he'd probably have learnt how to count higher than he can now, more social skills and possibly how to read small words. however, since we were moving to uganda, i decided to take on homeschooling. i figured, it's just j/k. how hard can it be?
we've been pretty lax this year. reading lots. doing crafts. playing games. noah really likes starfall, a website that teaches letters and sounds and then moves on to reading and it's all quite interactive. mostly we've just been enjoying life together and learning about day to day stuff like dressing yourself {he now completely dresses and undresses himself every morning and night! which also brings us to the dilemma of multiple outfit changes a day}, making the bed, folding laundry and helping with kitchen duties like setting the table and cooking & baking. i was amazed the other day when noah helped me fold all his own clothes - from shirts and socks to underwear and shorts!
sometimes jamie and i have worried that perhaps i'm not structured or organized enough with his curriculum {which is...not really a curriculum at all, to be honest} and when the evil monster called Comparison pops up and we see what our friends' kids are learning or can do we think, uh oh. maybe he's behind. even though i know he's a smart kid who picks up on things quite quickly.
and then it happens.
he starts to see words and recognize them.
and he's now asking how to spell certain words so we sound them out and he just writes it down. usually just remembering the letters from his head.

this is his "STOP" sign that he wrote on his own and then asked how to spell "STOP". i was so impressed that he figured out the 'O', 'T', and 'P' all on his own.

this is noah's "zoo" that we sounded out together. {animals include a sloth, a wooly mammoth, an elephant and a giraffe}

later on noah asked to spell out the word "wild" and eventually gave up {after writing two "M"s} but i'm encouraged with his interest in words and spelling and amazed that it really does just happen

my question for you is, do you correct your child flipping a letter/word around {like in noah's "zoo", the "z" is flipped and looks like an "s"} or do you wait until later when s/he is more confident with writing? when and how does correction fit into learning? is it dependent on your child's temperament {easy going or highly sensitive, etc.} or is there a general rule of thumb that should be followed?
for me i've just encouraged noah and at this point i'm not worrying about him flipping his letters around. i'll probably write out words for him to see and continue to show him, rather than tell him how to write the letters properly. 

Monday, July 9, 2012

books we're into

since we have summer weather year 'round {why yes i am boasting about that although i have zero to do with the weather here} we aren't feeling the need to make the most of every single summery second. which is actually kinda nice.
so we really like books around here. i often say to people when they ask what i miss from home, sidewalks, parks and libraries. yup. we love books.
luckily in kampala there are a couple book stores that have a great selection of kids books so i pick up a new one every now and then. plus i've also found some second hand places that sell some fantastic older books.
if you have kids, you know that they'll go through their favourites which of course have to be repeated seventy million times every day. and usually multiple times at bedtime. of course.

so here's what we're into at the moment:

Dr. Seuss' Green Eggs and Ham
i'm not sure who first pulled this one out, but every time we read books, this one is a must these days. this morning noah "read" the whole thing to jude which made my heart go all squishy from all the cuteness.

Dr. Seuss' Fox in Sox
of course this book is a favourite. and impossible to read through without making a single mistake although that's my goal every time i read it. {hm, maybe i do have a bit of "type A" in me...}. the boys have picked up on one line "goo. goo. gluey gluey." and make sure they say it every time we use glue in crafts.

The Snail and the Whale
this is such a sweet book about a snail who wants to see the world and a whale who lets him hitch a ride. the illustrations are lovely and it has such a delightful rhyme to the story.

Mater and the Ghostlight
i picked up this book back in canada for a roadtrip we were going on with the boys. it's still a favourite and the boys like to say a lot of the lines in all the right voices from the pixar short film. super cute.

Jesus must be really special
this was a book that was sent over from our church in toronto when they celebrated their 50 year anniversary. it's about a really sweet family who loves Jesus and i never fail to feel like a lousy parent when i read it. {jokes. sorta.} but the boys like it. so that's enough for me.

Pete the Cat
jamie's family sent this book over for noah's birthday and the boys still love it. even jude will "read" it to himself. there are tons of activities you can do with your kids that are related to this book. {just look on pinterest!} and while i was looking up this book on amazon i saw that there are other pete the cat books which looked super cute!

Moomin's Lift-the-Flap Hide & Seek book
i grew up reading stories about the moomins who live in moominvalley and loved the books. when i happened upon this book at a store here in kampala, i knew i had to introduce my boys to the moomins. the fact that it's a lift-the-flap book makes it fun for the boys. there's even a character called the Fillyjonk who has three children and the boys say that maybe they should call me Fillyjonk since i'll have three kids when this baby is born. kids are so funny. {luckily the name hasn't stuck.}

this book is one that jamie and i both dread when the boys pull it out. it's got so many words and at bedtime, let's be honest. sometimes you just want a quick "Hop on Pop" book to read before having some downtime. but regardless, the boys love this book about a little train who wants to be a "flyer" between chicago and new york, but can't manage to stay on the tracks.

and my kind friend kelly has lent me Mr. Poppin's Penguins to read with noah but we haven't started it yet. perhaps today we'll start. noah loves reading and we've already read our way through several chapter books together.

there are many others but those are just a few of our favourites at the moment.
what are your favourites?

Friday, July 6, 2012

friday links

it's friday!
last night jude woke up with a fever and so i brought him into bed with me {since there was ample room without jamie - missing him!} for who knows how long until he was ready to fall back to sleep in his own bed.
this morning he still wasn't entirely back to himself so beth watched him while i ran a few errands with noah. so we spent the rest of the day playing and cuddling and watching cartoons. we filled our bellies with delicious pizza for dinner and then the boys went to bed. beth and i filled a couple of basins with hot water and soaked our feet while we watched friends and polished off an entire bowl full of the most amazing homemade kettle corn. {courtesy of joy the baker. of course.}

oh! and beth took some amazing maternity pictures of me yesterday! it was fun and i am so happy with them! i've never had maternity pictures taken before. and it'll be so great to look back on these pictures and see this home, here in kampala.

some friday links for ya!

my kids aren't typically "early" risers {although to this night owl, 7am does come awful early.} but i really like this article on some creative solutions to having kids who rise early.

and it's about time. i need this. it's a round up of online tutorials so you can teach yourself how to sew! i'm saving this bad boy for when i return to canada and have a sewing machine again. i think it's one of my life goals. learn how to sew.

i'm trying this easy art project with the boys. either this weekend or next week. it's so cute! {and easy!}

and these two? yum. cold drinks on a hot day. is there anything better? this one is for when you crave sugar and chocolate and this one is for when you  need something packed full of vitamins and fruit! they both sound delicious. i think i'm going to try and make the second one. for more than one reason.

have you guys heard of PicMonkey? love this site. seriously easy and gorgeous picture editing. fun and free! winning!

happy weekend! tomorrow we're going to my favouritest place in kampala, MishMash. and we'll possibly be going on sunday as well as they're starting up a family day with face painting and balloons and free kids meals - oh my!

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

two {on the third}

so i have this friend here. she's awesome. her son is 11 months old. she recently gave me four huge plastic bags full of baby clothes ranging from newborn to twelve months. plus some blankets. amazing.
and then we bought a bumbo and a baby rocker off of her.
the boys think they are for them.

and today i found these canadian balloons left here by a visitor from canada. only two days too late. oh well. we had fun with them today.

and today jamie also left for the philippines until the 15th. i miss him already.

Monday, July 2, 2012

3 things about being a canadian in uganda

1. canadians are known for frequently apologizing. living in uganda has doubled {at least} the amount i say "sorry". now all i can think of is george costanza saying, "you can stuff your sorries in a sack, mister!". *

2. i love our four seasons in canada. {or two. if you call them "winter and construction.} seriously! i do! but living in the land of eternal summer has it's perks. like if it's rains on a weekend, it doesn't matter. it's not like it's taking away one precious day of vacation. it's just another day. and chances are, it'll clear up in about 20 minutes and be shining away like the most perfect beach day ever.

3. meeting other great canadians {and americans!} here has been such a blessing to me and my family. when you're living in a foreign country and you meet others who understand what you're coming from and what your current reality is, it's truly a wonderful thing. 
yesterday we celebrated canada day with my lovely friend aletha and her family as well as my amazing friend beth who traveled to uganda simply to hang out with us {!} and a new friend {whom beth met on the plane} from poland, marta. we ate, we laughed, we did sparklers. it was fabulous.
happy canada day to those in canada and around the world who celebrated and an early happy fourth of july to all the amazing americans i know!

linking up with the lovely Elaine for Miss Elaine-ous Mondays!

* the reason that i say sorry more here is that ugandans often say "sorry" to show empathy, not necessarily when they've done something wrong. for instance, if noah bumps his head and comes crying to me i'll almost always say, "sorry." i don't even know how to stop saying it. "sorry rehab", maybe?
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...