Monday, January 5

Loving my full house! :D

Last night April, Davy and Judy arrived from Texas bringing the total number of people in our house to 13!! :D  We have a big house so there is plenty of room for them but tomorrow will be interesting as I have to get Jack up, fed and ready for the school bus by 7:50!!  Hmm.  May need to do a little planning!

Alicia's birthday is today so no doubt there will be some sort of frivolity and fun.... and probably wine.  Wine's nice! :D

Thursday, January 1

Happy New Year! :D

Wishing you all the best of fortune and health for the coming year.  We had a fun night last night with friends, playing Pictionary and eating too much yummy food!  This morning I have stated the intention of doing Yoga every day for 365 days!  One day at a time, right?

Today I did this quick Yoga workout

It is actually only 6 minutes or so, so nice and quick but a good start!  I followed that with 10 minutes of meditation (with Millie climbing up and helping herself to nurse, Jackster fighting Zombies on Minecraft and the dog chewing aggressively on her toes.  It's a trick, but I managed at least 30 seconds of mindful breathing! :D

And now, I think, a Friends marathon should begin! Thank YOU Netflix!

Tuesday, December 23

Day Twenty Three Fine fine fine!

Today's Act was at the bookmobile.  Man I love that place!! :D  A quick library stop with people who are SO friendly and helpful!  They find books for me they think I will like, they are just awesome.  We've done act of kindness here in the past, hiding dollar bills in children's books.  This year was a lot simpler.  Basically I handed them the cash and asked them to apply it to the next person who has library fines.  I have felt the pain of library fines and would like to help! :D  Not terribly exciting and no pic to share, but there ya go, that's what I did!!  :D

In other news we baked the gingerbread ready for decorating today, I cleaned all the dog paw prints off the basement floor and stairs ( I wish it would just FREEZE already instead of making the back yard a mud bath for the dogs to wade in ) and I did a boat load of laundry.  Tomorrow I'm not planning on doing much other than decorating the gingerbread houses and family game night.  Simples.  :D

Hope you had a great day!

Monday, December 22

Day Twenty Two. Trader Joe's

We had a two thirty appointment today, which I thought was a coincidence because it was at the Orthodontist...  (tooth hurty....!) and of course there were a "couple of little errands" that I needed to run as well. ...  (The grocery store, Michael's craft store ( AGAIN! ) Trader Joe's.... ( AGAIN! ) and Target, always Target.  Jackster needed to buy some gifts so he raided his "Pinky pank" and brought all the cash he had.  I, being the morning person, rather than an afternoon or evening person, that I am  thought it would be perhaps better to leave early and run our errands BEFORE the Ortho rather than after so we could go straight home in time for me to do chores and clean up a bit.  Har har. We did a rather amazing job though I do have to say.  We left the house around 12:30, Millie was wearing clothes (albeit no mi' as we had lost them somehow) and Jack was dressed with socks AND shoes ( though he wore his coat UPSIDE DOWN and we found out at bedtime he had worn his jeans OVER his sweats all day long... )   **insert long suffering sigh here**

Anyway, we left at 12:30 and we live a good 15 minutes from the stores.  We went first to the grocery store to buy candies to decorate our gingerbread houses (if and when I ever get around to baking the things!) .... the kids had great fun selecting candies to decorate with and Jack always loves putting the things on the scale and printing out the labels.  I remembered back to last year when it was very hard for him to remember three numbers to type in and now he did it with very little trouble.  Yay!  I let them get whatever they chose without whittling about amount or price.  They are sensible and only got what they thought they would need and I really appreciated not having to overly monitor the situation!  After the grocery store we headed to the Mall to Michael's and Trader Joe's.  I parked up by Traders and left the kids in the car whilst I ran in to Michael's.  I "needed" some cording so we could make some essential oil diffusing necklaces.... someday.... Lord only knows when I will have time to do that.... but we have what we need should a sudden blizzard ensue and we were stuck in the house for a month or so.  On my return to the car the kids indicated I could go to Trader's alone too... alrighty then!  Much quicker that way!  I sped in and picked up one or two things ( soup, oats, an Orchid plant and some truffles....)   I had decided to do our Act of Kindness there today and the Orchid and Truffles were going to be it! :D

Trader's have lovely flowers and I considered a bouquet but settled on a plant, something more lasting.  I figured if the recipient didn't want the hassle of keeping an orchid then they could always pass it on to someone else, doubling the act of kindness! :D

The orchid and truffles....!  Looks fancy, no? :D 

Once I'd paid for the items I wondered who I was going to give them to.  An idea rather quickly occurred to me as I left the store.  A huge line of cars had formed as people were trying to leave and enter the parking lot.  I spotted one car with a lady at the wheel.  I approached her car tapping on the passenger window and indicating she should lower it!  ( Obviously I looked kind and happy, not in the least intimidating!)  I passed the flower and the chocs through the window and wished her a Merry Christmas and saying she had been chosen to receive our random act of kindness!  She was so happy and wished me a Merry Christmas and a big Thank You!  I was pretty happy with it and hurried back to the car... where I twisted my ankle and fell in a wet heap in the parking lot right by my van.  I was thinking the kids would wonder what the heck happened so I suddenly POPPED back up in a sort of TA DAH movement knowing also that the woman I had just "blessed" was watching too!!  I'm such an arse!!   Ah well.... no lasting harm done!!

Last trip before the ortho was Target and we all went into the store.  Can you believe we were in and out in less than 15 minutes COMPLETE with all of Jack's purchases?? :D  The dollar section comes in mighty handy when you have only 8 dollars to spend!!  Quick stop at the ortho for a minor repair and then home to attempt a clean up, nurse a toddler, read some book and make a rather delicious dinner that everyone loves!  Jack had FIVE helpings ( though he IS a growing boy! )

Only a couple of days to go now!  I hope this blog has inspired you to maybe try an act or two of your own.  I forgot to say as I was checking out of Trader's I explained to the guy behind the counter what we were doing.
"How do you do that?" he asked.
"Um....???"  I didn't explain.
"I mean, is it some sort of organization???"  he went on.
I told him that anyone can perform an act of kindness at any time! They don't have to cost money, they don't even need to be much of an effort.  Return someone's shopping cart for them. Help carry groceries.  Shovel someone's sidewalk.  Bake a neighbor some cookies.  ...  it's easy and honestly, you'll feel so good about it, you'll find opportunities for kindness everywhere you turn after a while.  Try it, it's catchy!

Sunday, December 21

Day 21 for the birds

Today was.... um.... interesting...!  I may or may not have defied the universe and went ahead to take three kids and three dogs to the dog park resulting in a chipped tooth for me and some poor guy taking a tumble and almost ALMOST rolling into the water at the park.  Not to mention a little girl who cried THE ENTIRE way around, the mud the blood and the beer.   ... well the mud anyway.  I tried to salvage the morning by taking us all to Runza for hot chocolate only to find out that the main part was closed and only the drive through was open and I'd come in the wrong angle for the drive through.... blah blah blah... we went to U Stop for cocoa instead and headed home pretty beat.  Hubby had arrived before me having been out with his bud.  He'd lit the fire and put on the kettle for tea.  He also provided me with chocolate and told me he couldn't see the chip in my tooth.  He is a Good Man.    The day improved as I warmed my cockles, read my book and nursed my youngest.  Hubby later took Jess out to do a little more shopping and they stopped by the bird seed store on the way home where Jess did our Act of Kindness today.

We love the heck out of this store, the people are lovely and though the seed is more expensive, it's really good quality and fresh.  We've never had one complaint from the birds!  (hah!)  I love to feed the birds, I find it so satisfying.  They come right to our front window and we can watch them for hours.  Anyway, Jess just gave the money to the man behind the counter and explained it was an act of kindness and she wanted to pay for the next person's seed... or at least some of it!  Anyone who feeds the birds is good people in my book!

After I took some time to finish wrapping my gifts ( did ya hear that??  I'm DONE wrapping gifts and it's only the 21st!! ) and a light dinner, hubby and I went out for a drive to look at the Christmas lights.  We figured out a few years ago that the kids don't really enjoy it so it is pointless to make them come.  They are happy to stay home and wait for our return.  Even Millie, when I said Daddy and I were going for a ride at first said "ME!!" so I said, "Ok!  You want to come for a ride to look at Christmas lights??"  ... and she said "NooooOOOO!"  LOL!!  She hung home with the big kids instead!  Hubby and I toured the lights and swung by Starbucks for the obligatory Peppermint Mocha and got to spend a little time enjoying the music and the scenery.  

Now... Hook is playing on Netflix, the kids are sleeping and I am going to do a couple of last minute bits and pieces and it's off to bed for me too!  Night!

Saturday, December 20

Day 20.... Give a kid a Cactus day!

Rex and I always do our shopping on a Saturday morning.  Usually early early early to beat the crowds and to allow us to then have the rest of the weekend "free"! :D

This morning we had planned to leave about 7am, go to the bagel place, have some coffee and plan our "attack"!  ... so naturally we woke up at 8:45.  And then faffed about.  So that it was 9:30 when Rex called and found out the hair appointment he thought he'd missed yesterday was actually this morning.... at 10....  Gah.  I had him pour my cuppa tea into my to go mug and he and I said bye to the kids and hustled out.  3 minutes down the road and I realized I had left me tea at home...   4 minutes out and I realized I hadn't had breakfast!!  Great start!! :D

We made it to the appointment only a couple of minutes late and I face timed with my kids whilst I waited!!  I hate to run out on them first thing in the morning if we haven't really had time to say howdy!! :D  "Morning Jess!  Watch your siblings for me! Thanks for making Tea, see you later!!"

After the hair appointment it was on to the grocery stores which we at full swing and full capacity!  Everyone seemed to be in fine spirits though and it's not like we were in a big hurry!    I decided to do  my Random Act in the grocery store and thought I would buy some flowers for someone today.  Whilst I was checking out the flowers and plants I spotted a young girl (perhaps 8 or 10 years old) and an older boy (maybe an older brother or possibly her young father) and they were checking out the floral display.

The girl was pointing at various things and off she went into the refrigerated section with all the flowers.  I asked the man who was with her what she was up to and he said "looking for something for Mom"  :)  Awww...!  She came out of the fridge with a small bunch of yellow tulips and her brother / dad said ..." uummm....."  !  I left them to it and went a picked out a pretty pink Christmas Cactus.  I have one that flowers every year at this time and it's lived for years now (if I can do it anyone can!  I have a black thumb!  Plants tremble at my name!) and my Mum has one that's over 40 years old!  Christmas Cactus plants are a good investment in my opinion!!  Anyway I picked one out and also a package of pink gum... because... gum...!!  I paid for it all and popped the receipt back into the wrapper of the plant and went to track down the two I'd met earlier.  I found them soon enough and caught the girl's attention.

"This is for you!" I said.  "It needs some water and some love but should last you a long time and will make some pretty flowers!"

She was so thankful I was really touched.   She seemed genuinely pleased and seemed to be very happy about the gum too! :D

Anyway, there ya go... today's act!

After that Hubby and I went on to more stores... I went to Michael's and was able to pick up a bottle of glitter glue, get to the check out ( no line! ) and out again in only 3 minutes!  Now, if you ever shop at Michael's you will know why hubby totally missed me walking out the store as he sat in the car looking for me!  He was imagining I would be an age!  I've NEVER been in there without a line before!!

Trader Joes next... and wine sampling!  Great idea on an empty stomach!  Honestly what must they think of me in there!!

Panera Bread for lunch then home to my babes one of whom was COVERED in tomato soup!

Tonight we sat and watched The Santa Clause movie... somehow watching a movie with a 15 year old, a reluctant 12 year old, a crazy 2 year old, 3 dogs and 2 cats is not as relaxing as one might hope.  Dogs want out, dogs want in, baby wants attention, baby needs diaper changing, baby needs to poop, dogs want to sit on you, dogs want to wrestle with each other, 12 year old wants hot chocolate, hubby wants coffee, baby wants milk, baby wants to make you pretend to drink a cup of epsom salts she's poured for you as long as you then go "PooOOOooeeee" and make spitting noises.... over and over and over again....

So, yeah, we "watched" the movie and then put the kids to bed.  (I should be clear that Jess of course puts herself to bed...!! LOL!  )

Now it's time for hubby and I to have a little peace and quiet and the animals have all worn themselves out too.

Night all!

Friday, December 19

Day Nineteen. .. Not at all staged.

Tonight's post really IS going to be a quick one....  LOL!!  Hubby is waiting for me to watch a movie with him.... soooo... here goes! :D

Ok, but first I have to show you the neat pancakes I made for breakfast this morning.....

Cool eh?? :D I made the snowman one for Millie but in true Baker form she refused to eat it because it had a face.  Jack refused to eat a Mickey Mouse one some lovely lady made for him at a restaurant once when he was about Millie's age!! LOL!!  Oh how we laughed!!

So we had a very leisurely start this morning.......    waaaaay more TV than I will ever admit, thank the lord for Netflix and streaming Curious George that's all I can say!  I did provide ample snacks ( and way too much chocolate and ice cream), toys and books....   !!  Eventually I got myself moving, and made two big batches of Gingerbread dough whilst listening to a podcast of Serial. ( not heard of it? find it, download it.  It's awesome!)

Millie helped me stir..... sort of.....

You will notice her clothes on the chair behind her.....   *sigh*

Tonight Jess and I went to the Stage Theatre here in town to see our friends in the production of The Best Christmas Pageant Ever.  It was such fun and so well done.  We like to read the book every Christmas since our friend Alicia introduced it to us some years ago.  It's just so funny.  We decided to do our Act of Kindness there and after we'd collected our tickets we approached the snack bar and basically bought candy for the next 14 people in line!! :D  Fun fun fun!! :D

So, see, I can be quick!!

No cat pics tonight... he's outside, silly sod.  BUT here are some dog pics... you know... for whatever reason! :D

Lucy LOVES when Lilly comes to stay!! :D

Yogi under the table chewing on something noisy..!

Night all! :D