On the move


Even though the Littlest doesn't walk yet, that doesn't stop him from getting around... fast! He is not one who likes to sit still for very long. I can't imagine how much busier our lives are going to get when he finally does start walking... and running!

Tyler is feeling under the weather, so for the last two nights Soren has been my only dinner date. Yesterday we had blueberry banana pancakes, and tonight we had home made macaroni and cheese with ground beef. He sits in his highchair while I make dinner, and then I set out two places for us at the table. We each get a big glass of water - his with a straw, which is his favourite thing these days. He drinks SO much more water through that straw than he ever would in a sippy cup. Who knew? I didn't know he would even be able to figure out how a straw works!

These pictures are from this afternoon before dinner. The pups were so jealous that Soren figured out how to get outside!! It's hard to get pictures from the front now, since I always feel like I am chasing behind him!

Party planning!


image from here

Soren is turning ONE soon... so I'm planning a party! I can't quite believe a year has gone by, but I guess I still have a couple weeks left before I have to say that I have a one-year old. For months I was thinking about having a big party and making each and every decoration that I have seen on Pinterest, but that's not happening anymore. Somehow I don't have the time or energy to think up crafts after working a full day. Hopefully I can manage to bake a cake, and have the house looking half decent by the time guests are arriving at the door.

We've been engulfed in a world of rain for the last few days, which is starting to feel a bit blah. Today we decided to head out for a walk with the dogs around 5:30, and stupidly didn't really think about the rain situation. When we were halfway through the walk it started POURING and we had to take shelter in an elementary school that still had it's doors open. As we were huddled in the doorway with the stroller and 2 dogs, a woman came out and offered to drive us home. So nice! Our second stupid decision was not accepting the offer! It was coming down so hard I figured it would pass in a few minutes and we could head home. We huddled in the doorway (and inside after a janitor let us in) for at least half an hour before being bored enough to run home in the rain. I think the Littlest enjoyed it from his warm and dry vantage spot inside his stroller:)

I have a feeling this week is going to fly by... hopefully we will see some sun in the future. I'm ready for summer!

Friday faves - Books, Bikes, and Coffee!


Short weeks are the best. Tuesday feels like Wednesday, Wednesday feels like Thursday, and then suddenly it's Friday already! It's been a good week, but as always I'm happy for the weekend to arrive. The forecast is calling for rain, so I anticipate some baking, story reading, and cuddling time with the Littlest. I saw this book at a friends house a few weeks ago, and knew I had to get a copy! The illustrations are amazing, and the story lines are really cute. There is also a Paris book, New York, Stockholm, Tokyo, and quite a few others. I think it would be a nice collection to start for Soren.
In adult reading, I picked up a couple books at the library this afternoon that I am excited to start in on. I was in a book club for about a year, but somehow the club kind of fizzled. It was fun, and nice to get together with a fun group of girls once a month. We were a very informal book club, which may have led to its demise. We were not organized enough to plan the next book, the next date, or decide who was hosting. I read the book Room a few months ago, and found it fascinating. It was a bit sad, but so interesting to think about how we perceive the world around us.
I have been failing at my Resolution to work out three times per week. By the time Soren is in bed it's 7:45 or 8, and it's tough to drag myself to the gym. If I do make it there, it means that I've chosen to ignore the laundry for another day or put off cleaning the bathroom. By the time I get home, after 9, I'm unlikely to jump into a household chore. Which means the house is a mess... which I hate. It's a tough cycle, and I feel like I'm craving exercise after a long day of sitting at the office. While I was on maternity leave it was so easy to be active, because I barely ever sat down! We went for hour long walks at least once a day, and I was constantly on the move. I'm thinking about riding my bike to work a few days a week, which will hopefully help my sluggish feeling. I'll aim to look like this girl, complete with fresh flowers tucked in my handlebars!
image from pinterest.com
I am so happy that an amazing coffee shop opened up in Winnipeg, and even happier that it is within a stone's throw of my office. Tyler and I had a coffee date on our lunch hour one day this week, and it's hands down the best coffee place in the city.
image from Parlour Coffee
All this talk about books, coffee, and rain is making me want to curl up in a big cosy sweater. Not always the thing to do in May, but I know there are lots of sunny hot days on my horizon. In a couple months I'll be begging for sweater weather, when our window air-conditioner is not cutting it in the extreme prairie heat.

I love the colour of this sweater, and how it could bridge the gap between winter and summer. And for $21.97 - how could you go wrong? I might have to head to Forever21 sometime this weekend!
Linking up for High Five for Friday! Have a wonderful weekend!

Guilty Pleasure


So, I'm not that into TV. I like watching some HGTV shows, the occasional drama, and maybe a Bachelor every once in a while. I don't really get into very many shows to the point that I will watch several episodes in a row. However, I recently discovered Gossip Girl and I am in love! Yes, it's pretty trashy and yes it is about high school students...which is a little sad in itself considering I will soon be 30. But there is something about the show that I absolutely adore. I'm not going to say I only watch it for the fashion, because while that's partly true it's not my only reason. I just like it:) A great night for me involves a glass of wine and an episode of Gossip Girl. I will continue to drool over the outfits and wish I were summering in the Hamptons (at age 17).

p.s. - I am a total Blair fan!

playgrounds & meal planning


I am feeling a bit behind on everything... which is weird since I got an extra day off this weekend. I was hoping that I could write a post tonight saying that the house was clean, laundry was done, and fresh muffins were baked in preparation for easy breakfasts. None of that happened, and I'm feeling a little disappointed in myself.

We spent the morning at the Natures Playground at Assiniboine Park, which was wonderful! It didn't look anything like this photo, because it was completely packed full of kiddos. Soren loves watching at of the kids run around, and I'm sure he wishes he could do everything they do. We also walked past the duck pond and he LOVED the ducks!! He was dying to actually get in the pond, probably thinking it was a lake like the one he played in yesterday.

I'm trying to come up with some menu items for the week ahead, which is one of the tasks that I hate the most. I don't mind cooking (and I love baking) but planning what to eat every day is always a bit of a struggle for me. So far I've come up with Chicken Stir-Fry for tomorrow night, and then maybe chill on wednesday or thursday. It's supposed to rain all week, so warm comfort food will probably be good. Oh! I just remembered a recipe I wanted to try - tacos al pastor that I saw over on the blog Its the Little Things. When I saw this image I knew I had to try it!! Maybe meal planning isn't that bad, after all!
image from its the little things

The first sunday of the summer


We went to the lake today, and someone just had to go in the water! It was too cold for me, but the Littlest had no problem putting his toes, and his bum, in the cold water. It was a beautiful sunny day, and the dogs were going crazy running in and out of the lake, especially when they had 2 dog 'friends' to play with from next door.

It's nice to get out of the city, even if it's just for the day. I have a feeling we will be spending a lot of Sundays at the lake or at the beach, since Soren seems to be content playing in the grass and sand for as long as we will let him. I love seeing him spend time with his grandparents and aunts as well. I want him to be able to spend time apart from us, and grow into his own little person. So far he seems pretty adventurous! He's getting used to the feeling of the grass, and did not hesitate to crawl right into the lake, squishing sand between his fingers.

The best part of this Sunday? Our weekend isn't over yet! Happy Birthday, Queen Victoria! Thanks for giving us an excuse for a long weekend in May.
 Soren LOVES sitting on a chair like a 'big person'. It can entertain him more than any toy.
 Wow Grandpa! This sure is fun!!
 Much better now that my pants are off!

 I didn't have much luck keeping the hat on him. It's very cute though, thanks Lauren!

Cheers to a long weekend!


It's the first long weekend of the summer, which is always something to cheer about. If the weather's nice we will hopefully head out to my family cottage for Sunday or Monday. We have dinner with friends planned for this evening, and I think that's about it for the plans. I'm looking forward to spending an extra day with the Littlest.

This week Tyler and I marked 7 years together! We started dating on May 15, 2005, which seems like a million years ago. It's strange to think that I was only 22 then... which leads me to think of my upcoming, not looking forward to, BIG birthday. Yikes. I tried to find a picture of us from when we first started dating, but I had a lot of trouble. There are quite a few of me... but practically none of the two of us. This one was taken at a friends wedding where Tyler was a groomsman. Little did we know then... :)

In seven years we have lived in three different houses together, gotten engaged, gotten married, bought a house, added two dogs to the family, gotten pregnant, and added the best little guy to our lives! I think there are quite a few other things that should probably make that list too, like graduating from university, starting careers, and taking a few great trips. I imagine that the next seven years will be quite a lot different than the past seven years, but I'm looking forward to it!
 Another early dating picture, and then one of our first fur-baby!
I'm linking up again with Lauren for High Five for Friday. Happy long weekend!!

The littlest gardener


This is what we did today, after daycare and before dinner. Second day of daycare went great! Soren met the other little girl who goes there, and apparently they got along great.

Helping my dad garden...
This mud looks like it might be tasty!
 Let me just help myself.
 Tastes weird!
Oh! It's terrible!!
 I'm so silly...
 Time for my dad to take me inside.

Le bebe goes to daycare


I just finished reading the book, Bringing Up Bebe, by Pamela Druckerman. It was great! Obviously, I don't believe that EVERY french parent instills impeccable manners in their children, or that EVERY American parent lets their kid eat chicken fingers for every meal, but overall the book was entertaining. It made me think about what traits I really want Soren to have, and which ones are nice, but not a necessity.

The part of french parenting that I most agree with is the idea that parents have their own lives, separate from their roles as parents. French women put time and effort into the people they were pre-baby, which is difficult to do sometimes. It's nice for me that a lot of my friends don't have kids yet, because when I go out with them we typically don't spend all our time talking about babies. That said, I love hanging out with my 'mom' friends, whom I can discuss sleeping patterns and breastfeeding issues with. Everything in moderation, I suppose. It's interesting to note all of the differences between the two cultures, regardless of which end of the spectrum you fall on.

Soren had his first day of daycare yesterday! It went really, really well. He was the only baby there (only one other little girl goes there now), and the daycare woman told us over and over again how sweet he was. He slept, ate, played, and went to the park. When Tyler picked him up at the end of the day, he cried! I don't think we could have hoped for anything better. I still feel a little badly about not spending every day with him, but if I can't be there with him at least I know he's having a good time.

First Mother's Day


For my very first mother's day, we hosted a Mother's Day Tea. The weather was absolutely amazing - you couldn't have asked for a better day. We had iced tea, champagne, cupcakes, brownies, coffee, sandwiches, hats, great company... it was fabulous! Although, we both realized that preparing for a party is a LOT more difficult with a very active 11-month-old. We thought we would have plenty of time this morning to prepare before guests arrived at 1, but we were definitely scrambling. Luckily, the dude had a really long nap from 10ish until 1, otherwise we would have had nothing to serve.

Soren gave me a beautiful skirt that he picked out all on his own, with a little help from his dad's credit card. He also gave me a beautiful planter and watering can that he decorated with the help of his Grandma. She made a little book with pictures of him making the craft, which was adorable. It's amazing to think that I have only been a mother for 11 months - it feels like much longer. I love that he is really into giving kisses these days. He gets so proud of himself after he kisses me! He is such a happy baby, I must say that so far motherhood is exactly what I envisioned it to be, only better. Happy Mother's Day to all of the great moms everywhere, especially to my lovely mother and mother-in-law.
Home-made Ice Tea... I am going to be making a lot of this as the temperatures warm up!
Blueberry Scones, Carrot Cupcakes, Strawberries, Date Squares, Lemon Loaf, Egg Salad & Tuna Salad sandwiches. And also DELICIOUS glutten-free brownies from Trader Joes. I wish they would open Canadian locations.
Champagne and Coffee... all you need for a great brunch!
Great wrapping job - Soren!
He was pretty excited about un-wrapping. Maybe practicing for his upcoming birthday?

Lots of lovely hats. Also a little peak of the pergola that Tyler built himself this past week. Where did I get this handy-man husband from?! He also built the stairs! I'm liking this new hobby... and thinking of all the bookshelves he could build, or maybe a long harvest table?

Saturday Morning


Yea for Saturdays!! I told the Littlest that I might hold him and cuddle him ALL DAY LONG, just because I can! He wasn't too impressed with the idea... he was actually squirming out of my arms as fast as he could at that moment. We are sitting here enjoying our raisin toast and berries, and looking outside to a beautiful blue sky.
It seemed like a long week, and I am definitely ready to move on to the next. Soren starts daycare on Monday, so next week will be an adjustment for us but I'm not going to think about that today.

Today, we are going to play outside, go for walks, and get ready for a Mother's Day Tea that we are hosting tomorrow! We're crossing our fingers that the weather stays nice tomorrow, so that we can take advantage of the extra seating areas out on the deck. Tyler has been working around the clock to spruce up our backyard, and I will have to post some pictures soon. It's very impressive!

A few other things about the week - I went and saw the Hunger Games. I cannot believe that millions of kids everywhere were lining up to watch kids killing kids. The movie was ok, but I was really taken aback by all of the violence and the premise of the story. Perhaps I should have read the book first...

Soren turns 11 months today! Happy 11 months - little guy. I love you so, so much!

I think this picture was taken right after his first bath at home, probably around 4 or 5 days old. He had a lot more hair at that time!

Good things about work


There are definitely some good things about work - like after work drinks! I went to a new wine bar after work today and enjoyed a 'flight' of wine. Great idea to get 3 small glasses to try, along with descriptions of each one. 

Another great thing about work is shopping on my lunch hour! Today I was lucky and got to meet up with my husband and the Littlest for a visit. First, we went to a children's store and got him a pair of 'Tiny Toms'. Sooo cute!! I love them, and am considering getting myself a matching pair. I like the red ones though. After shopping we went to a little restaurant for a very quick lunch. Soren spotted a muffin as soon as we were in the door, so he was thrilled. That kid is a crazy muffin guy. I also tried to nurse him quickly, which was awkward. I kept thinking people from my office were going to walk in... even though we were covered up. Mixing baby time and work is kind of an interesting balance. I don't want to bore my colleagues with baby stories all day, or make them think that I can't handle my job. For the most part, when I leave the house in the morning I feel like I am switching off the 'mom' me, and switching on the 'work' me. I love switching back to the mom me when I get home at the end of the day!! 
After Soren went to bed I headed to Old Navy and Joe Fresh to look for a pair of cheap jeans. I am convinced I can find a decent pair without spending $200... but I think I've been looking for almost a year now! From the amount of time I have spent on this quest, I should have just paid the $200 in the first place. I bought a couple of things (no jeans), and then logged on to the Old Navy site when I got home. There is 20% off Online purchases only today, so I checked how much the pants I bought would be online, and realized I could save myself $12! Anything you order online from them you can return in store, so there's really no risk. I bought the exact same pair of pants online, again, and I'll return the pair I got in-store. I finally picked up a new nail polish (Essie Lilacism), so I am off to paint my nails! 

Practice Cake


We went to Tyler's parents house for dinner to celebrate his mom's birthday. She brought the cake out and let Soren 'practice' for his upcoming birthday. He was mesmerized by the candle, and immediately tried to grab at the cake. I didn't let him eat any, though. I'm saving that for his official party! I made the cake - a coconut buttercream - which wasn't as good as I was hoping. The icing wasn't sweet enough for my liking, and I think I would have preferred more of a coconut flavour in the cake. Oh well, I guess not all recipes can be amazing! (the letters are supposed to spell 'OLIVE', although it may not be clear from the picture)
I can't believe how quickly the week-end has flown by, and it doesn't even feel like we did that much! Rupert had a bad experience at our regular dog park a couple weeks back, so we were hesitant about taking him back there. I felt like going for a walk this morning, so we headed to a different park that I hadn't been to in ages. It was beautiful! The morning was misty and a little foggy, and the air smelled so good from a rainfall last night. The park we were at was pretty quiet, and the dogs had a blast running around. Soren loves anything outdoors, so he was thrilled to sit in his stroller and 'talk' to us and point out every tree and bush he saw. 

I'm still feeling a little upset about working full time, but I'm not nearly as upset as I was a few weeks ago. This will be Tyler's second week at home with Soren, and then he will start daycare next week. I'm glad the two of them got to spend some extra time together, and I really think Soren has enjoyed it. 

Thank Goodness it's Friday because...


...I get 2 whole days to spend with my most favourite person!!! Last weekend we got to spend lots of time outside, which was lovely. This week-end I am going to enjoy my long breakfasts with the littlest, happily chase him up the stairs, and be thankful I am at home with him when he's grabbing the dog food for the millionth time. And then before I know it - it will be Sunday and we'll start the week all over again.

On Saturday we went to the park and walked through the Leo Mol Sculpture Gardens. The flowers are not in bloom yet, but it was still pretty to look around.
 I love this smiling face! I also love that the weather is warm enough to be outside in just a t-shirt.
My two favourite guys... enjoying one of the first BBQ's of the season. Soren LOVES BBQ's, especially hot dogs. This changes all the time though, a few weeks ago he was obsessed with hamburgers. Baking is one thing he never passes on... we would know something was wrong if he refused to eat a muffin!
I think my favourite thing about being back to work is wearing heels. While on maternity leave I didn't spend the days lazing about in my pyjamas, but I also never had the opportunity to wear heels. It didn't really fit in with going to the playground or baby rhyme time. I am in need of some SERIOUS shopping!! I think I've gone through all of my decent outfits in one week!
image from here
My other favourite thing about work is going out for lunch, and drinking lots of delicious coffee. I went to a cute little french bistro today with two colleagues for a relaxing, long lunch. It was great to catch up on work - but outside of the office. Sometimes a change of scenery is much needed during long days in a cubicle!
photo from Pinterest... I couldn't find the original link
Cheers to the weekend! And linking up with Lauren @ From my Grey Desk Blog