Wednesday, May 28, 2008

On this day 5 years ago...

A Happy Boy was born.

First Year

He made such an exciting entrance into the world and has been entertaining us ever since. Everyone commented that he was the happiest baby in the world, and we agreed.

Second Year

Happy Boy is still happy, with the added bonus of becoming an excellent climber. Yay.

Third Year

Oy, the curls!

Fourth Year

Such a good big brother, such a happy, funny boy.

Fifth Year

The amazing sense of humour. The sweet sensitive side. The crazy, boisterous boy. The jumping jumping jumping. I love it all.
Happy Birthday Happy Boy!

Thursday, May 22, 2008

Green Thumbs Needed [Edited!]

I stumbled across these "Gardening Bags" on the Ikea website today:

So... do you think you could actually plant things in there (like tomatoes, herbs, etc.?) If so, how cute would that be at the edge of the patio?

Also... how? Just fill it up with dirt and go to it?
EDIT: I went to Ikea and bought 6 of them ! They're totally cute and they have a plastic insert to put around the top to keep it round. Laural is right - it takes a lot of dirt. Each one takes 1/2 bag of drainage stones and 1-1/3 bags of soil. The best part: they were on sale for $2.49 each! With the container, the stones and the dirt, each one cost $9.47 to set up (13% tax included). I wanted big pots to do my vegetables this year and I think these will be great!

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

My Favourite Workout

Last year around this time of year I started walking to and from work. It was a pretty good workout that was easy to fit into my schedule. Back then I had a nanny, which meant I could leave early, secure in the knowledge that Lisa would get on the bus on time and the other two would carry on with their days.
What a difference a year makes. The nanny is gone, two kids now need to get on a bus, the other to daycare and there's no way Homer would be willing to take all of this on himself while I enjoy my morning walk.
So, Plan B still involves this great set of stairs. I run to the stairs, go up and down 3 times (working up to five times, but for now three seems to be my limit), then run home. The whole ordeal takes less than thirty minutes, I feel well worked-out and it can fit into almost any day.

I love this workout because:
1. It's quick
2. It's effective.
3. I can measure my progress (# of flights done, time of each flight)
4. It starts out easy and has some easy bits in between the hard bits, therefore the only real willpower required is for about 3 seconds at the top of the stairs.

Friday, May 16, 2008

I could spit on Marky Mark*

Mark Wahlberg is HERE filming a movie. HERE WHERE I WORK! I can see his trailer from my window. It's the new Max Payne movie. Ludacris is here too, but whatever.

I'm not usually star struck, but oh my gawd... it's Marky Mark!


*I would not actually spit on you Mark. Not ever. MWAH!

Thursday, May 15, 2008

A mini-rant will have to do.

You know, I had a whole rant ready to go. Then I nixed it. It was too personal. Too directed at someone I don’t even know who has upset me time after time over the past few weeks. A fellow blogger.

Don’t worry, it’s not any of you. This blogger doesn’t read or comment here.

Here in university-land I deal with a lot of student leaders. Year after year I watch hard-working, nice students work their way up the ranks of student government. At the lower rungs, they are involved in charity work and advocacy, performing good deeds across the land for no pay and little credit. Once they reach a paid executive position, however, there is often a shift. These dedicated servants gradually become egotistical, power-drunk snots who like to give themselves inflated importance. Their behaviour is reinforced by students still working their way up the ladder who need their support and university administrators who manipulate and stroke their egos to get what they want. They get nominated for awards they don’t deserve; they get praised for hard work they haven’t done; they are given descriptors like “bright” and “innovative” as they take credit for work done by people who actually are bright and innovative. I’m not saying all student leaders follow this path (some of my favourite people in the world are former student leaders), just that it is a phenomenon that happens often.

Anyway, that story is kind of related to my original rant. It's about noticing a shift in style that is not flattering. About forgetting what got you to where you are now. I’m done now, but feeling only moderately better.

Monday, May 12, 2008

More Wonka and my muses

Not much time to post these days. As I write this, my auditor is in the next room trying to figure out how my organization can pay the man more money. Good times.

Mother's Day was fine. I was busy, both as a mother and a daughter. We did our big family celebration at my mom & dad's. I offered to bring the cake to celebrate the May birthdays, my dad's and Bart's. I attempted to fuel the Charlie and the Chocolate Factory obsession just a little more:

Wonka's Chocolate Waterfall Cake, featuring Augustus Gloop.

It looked a little better in real life. Bart was thrilled.

In lieu of anything too barfy, here are my three favourite things about being a mom:




Monday, May 5, 2008

When you wish to be swallowed up by the chocolate

So I think I’ve mentioned before that Bart is a huge fan of both the Charlie and the Chocolate Factory and Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory movies. He’s seen each of these movies many, many, MANY times in the past two years or so and references them often:

*Before putting a piece of gum in his mouth he’ll stop and declare: “I’m the world chewing gum champion. I’m not afraid of anything.” (every. single. time)

*When Lisa is being particularly bossy, he’ll rap her on the forehead and say, “Yep, she’s a bad nut.”

*When playing any game, at some point he’ll say, “You lose! Good day sir!”

*If he asks for a treat from the store, he always requests a Wonka Bar (any chocolate bar). He carefully unwraps the bar, looking for the Golden Ticket.

*He loves to play Charlie and the Chocolate Factory. The game involves piling up all the couch cushions, then he dives in wildly flailing his arms and legs while someone (usually me, as the others tired of the game ages ago) says, “Augustus is drowning. Augustus! That is not a good thing you do, my child!”

*His superhero action figures regularly play with his Augustus Gloop action figure. Augustus will also play with Barbies and trains.

It’s all pretty cute most of the time. We laugh and play along, because it’s harmless and seems like a funny obsession for a 4-year-old. However, this weekend, the fixation turned not so cute.

Our next door neighbour is very nice, but a little odd. His property is immaculate, and it should be given the amount of time he spends working on it. His gardening clothes consist of tight red track pants with a red and white football jersey tucked into the track pants. He wears dark green socks over the pants with red gardening shoes and has bright yellow knee pads. He’s not a tall man. Okay, so do you have a good picture of the neighbour?

On Sunday, Lisa and Bart were in the front yard playing and Bart needed a kleenex. I stepped inside to grab one and when I came back out, the kids were at the edge of the lawn talking to the neighbour. I called Bart over for the kleenex and he declared in a loud, booming voice, “I’m just talking to the Oompa-Loompa!”

Oh yes he did.