Being with friends

Our oldest was beyond excited at the idea of turning twelve. He doesn’t want for much when it comes down to it and was so excited to get a new Pokémon Special Edition Pikachu card set. Even though he knew what was behind the wrapping it made him no less excited to open it. I think half the fun of birthdays is watching your children open their presents.

06oct2016_lucas-bday_19 What’s better than one Pikachu card? One small one and one really big one, of course! 06oct2016_lucas-bday_29When asked what he wanted to do for his birthday he said he would like to see a couple of good friends. Since my mother was visiting we thought it a great idea to take advantage of the wonderful weather and show her another bit of our beautiful province while the boys ran around being boys. 🙂06oct2016_lucas-bday_30Creature alert!06oct2016_lucas-bday_33Love this view! It almost looks like a tropical paradise – if it wasn’t for the big rocks (Love them!) and those conifers!
06oct2016_lucas-bday_34 06oct2016_lucas-bday_38My boys. 🙂06oct2016_lucas-bday_41 Rock-jumping-minecraft-terraria-real-life-make-belief-play on huge rocks!06oct2016_lucas-bday_43 I just love this landscape with its tide pools, low ground cover and huge boulders (reminds me of the Moors in Wuthering Heights).06oct2016_lucas-bday_48Somewhere in there are two people…
06oct2016_lucas-bday_51 06oct2016_lucas-bday_52 In the distance you can see beautiful Peggy’s Cove!06oct2016_lucas-bday_54

As evening came we enjoyed cake with both grandmothers and made our traditional family photos.

06oct2016_lucas-bday_66 06oct2016_lucas-bday_91 06oct2016_lucas-bday_89 06oct2016_lucas-bday_82 06oct2016_lucas-bday_81 Happy twelfth birthday, Mr L!06oct2016_lucas-bday_72



Solstice Strawberry Moon!

We got together with some friends on Sunday for a Father’s Day/Solstice Strawberry Moon celebration. We had a great fire and great company. The boys played soccer with the dads and the girls sat and chatted and we all laughed a lot. Eventually, it was time to go home.On the way to the car we noticed the moon rising and had to take some photos which, of course, the kids didn’t mind because when pictures start happening they know they have much more time to play!

rising moon at DsAn hour later we were in the car and on our way. But not before I made one more stop to take a quick pic. Thank goodness for phone cameras because it’s better than no camera!

rising moon on water

Our Solstice day was filled with Happy Solstice exclamations throughout the day and when we were leaving the house to visit a friend Xman found a hitchhiker on his shirt.

We let the wee one go wild and free. I just love how much the boys love even the little creatures and respect all life. ?

lacewingLater the evening with the sun still in the sky we continued the slow work of dismantling our deck. Our boys love this kind of work  helping out which thrills me because it feels good to do it together and there is such a good feeling of accomplishment from hard work.

deck workLong after the boys went to bed the moon finally showed herself. The boys were too tired to wait up because of a previous late night. They had gone to bed at 1am because Stephen wanted to play some Minecraft with the boys for Father’s Day. So after some fun playing – I am a slow learner but it’s fun! – they settled into bed at 1am and Stephen and I around 2!

I digress…So long after the boys went to bed the moon finally made her way above our trees. It was now after midnight and I almost didn’t grab my camera but knew I’d regret it since another full moon on Solstice wouldn’t happen for decades. She was as breathtaking as always and at least now I’d have a pic to show the boys. ?

21Jun2016_Solstice Strawberry Moon_01

I have to admit that there were moments on Father’s Day where great sadness entered my heart as I just lost my father in December. Many mixed feelings that will always stay with me and continue to teach me how to live and love. We did get a really nice video chat in with my step-father and mother, wishing him a Happy Father’s Day. ?

I hope you all had a wonderful Father’s Day and Solstice!! Many blessings.




throw back thursday – Pictou Lodge Resort

I have so many images that I have yet to edit and post but many of them are over a year old! I enjoy sharing our ‘goings-on’ on the blog because I love scrolling through and seeing what the year was like, what we did, where we went, and friends and family we spent time with. It’s all so wonderful for me!

I decided to create a Throw Back Thursday blog post. I am hoping this will give me incentive to edit all of those images! 

Last July we made our yearly visit to Pictou Lodge Resort. We all love the resort and look forward to the next year’s visit before the current one is over!

There is so much family that comes along that there is always someone to chat with, play with or swim with! It’s a ton of fun for kids and adults alike!

Fun playing basketball with the cousins.17Jul2015_Pictou_25 The ladder toss game is the first things the boys run to.18Jul2015_Pictou_63 These hammocks are placed throughout the resort and we just love them. It’s the perfect spot to just chill and watch family play the games.18Jul2015_Pictou_73 The boys were really keen to try the new paddle boards at the resort. Instead of standing they decided to sit on the boards and use the kayak paddles to maneuver. I think they would have stayed on them all day if they could!18Jul2015_Pictou_90 18Jul2015_Pictou_98 18Jul2015_Pictou_111 18Jul2015_Pictou_119 18Jul2015_Pictou_173 A lot of swimming was had at the salt-water pool. We laugh every time we go to the pool because it’s most often busy with just our family. One year we took a family photo and there were 97 people! 97! Wow!18Jul2015_Pictou_211 For the first time ever we saw a blue heron during our visit! We saw it fly overhead when we first arrived and I was thrilled to see it stayed around long enough for me to take some pictures of it on the beach. I swear I did not saturate the greens in this one bit. Aren’t they amazing? Love that bird too!18Jul2015_Pictou_229 You just cannot go to the beach without skipping stones!18Jul2015_Pictou_271 Finding skipping stones is hard work! 18Jul2015_Pictou_275 The boys are big into Nerf and so this cool piece of driftwood happened to make its way home with us. I think that particular stone may have too. Eventually you have so many stones and sticks around the house you forget where they came from!18Jul2015_Pictou_285 This fire pit was a new addition last year and we were all too eager to put it to the s’mores test!18Jul2015_Pictou_32418Jul2015_Pictou_331 18Jul2015_Pictou_332 There’s always at least one marshmallow that catches on fire. I’m not sure it’s all by accident, either. 😉18Jul2015_Pictou_350 These are the best vegan marshmallows. So so good!18Jul2015_Pictou_333How often do you get to play checkers like this! If you go to the Pictou Lodge home page there is a video ad where you can see us playing checkers! We had a good laugh when a relative told us about it. His kids happened to be in the pool portion of the ad. Yes, there are a lot of us. 🙂
18Jul2015_Pictou_354 The sunsets. My goodness. This one is just a hint at what you get. They can be just amazing. 17Jul2015_Pictou_47On the Saturday night a hefty portion of family get together for a sing along complete with instruments. It is now the boys’ absolute favourite part of the weekend. Plus, they get to stay up super late!
18Jul2015_Pictou_36118Jul2015_Pictou_379These orb weavers were very cool – and very busy with their dinnertime ‘guests’. 18Jul2015_Pictou_456 Goodnight Pictou Lodge. Until next year…18Jul2015_Pictou_475

Happy New Year!

We had a wonderful day yesterday, a lovely Solstice and Christmas as well.

A dear friend of mine bought us this beeswax cancel for Solstice. Every year we say what we are thankful for and look back on last year’s wish list and make another. It just goes to show the power of intention because most of our wishes from last year came true and we hadn’t even looked at the list we made last year until this Solstice!

solsticeI finally got around to finishing my fire cider (all bottled and with a kick!) and doing the third round on my bee balm glycerine. I just love the colour that the glycerine is turning!fire cidrebee balm glycI don’t do much baking. I actually hate baking. But I love this cookie press that my mother used to use to make us cookies as kids. It’s dear to my heart and quickly becoming our own tradition.

cookie pressChristmas Eve is always an exciting time and never passes without reading The Night Before Christmas from this beautiful book! night b4 xmasChristmas Day proved to be so mild that I was thrilled about not having socks on my feet! Snow is a beautiful thing but I gotta say, bare feet are pretty awesome too!xmas in sandals There are always Christmas Crackers to pop! Oui Oui!french XmanThe boys received a few games and we all had a great time with this one. Qwirkle rocks!qwirkle Even our little Gypsy received a gift. *I think she likes it!* whispered*gypsyOn the 27th we had a storm and the boys took no time in throwing on their layers and getting out there!snowsnow playCandy cane precision.candy caneWe had a wonderful new year celebration just the four of us. The boys stayed up and we rang in the new year together with some Minecraft fireworks that L made. He even made seats for us to sit in to watch the display. I can barely build and they do this! We took a screen shot in front of the banner that Xman made. Here we are in our MC skin glory!MC family portraitMC fireworksOf course today we had to toast to a wonderful new year! The boys have sparkling peach apple juice and we have mimosas. Yum! cheersI am all ready for January! I even painted a calendar for this month and plan on doing one for every month this year. They are sized to fit perfectly into my Leuchtturn1917. Love it! If you want to download a copy for yourself just hop on over to my art blogBujo PageMC fireworksHere’s to a wonderful 2016 and more posting! 🙂


Hello! It’s been too long!

Yes, I see the last time I posted over here was in July. My goodness!

Truth is that I hate editing photos and I would rather being doing other things. But, one of the main reason I have this blog is for family that lives in other places and for us, as a keepsake. So today I grabbed some photos from the past month to show what we have been up to.

I have a bunch of photos to edit from our summer vacation but they are on my big camera (my real camera as I call it!) and it’s just a matter of sitting down and editing. It’s always hard when you try to edit your own pics and decide what to show when you want to show it all! Maybe later this week–it’s only been four months after all!

We got back into the swing of lessons and some winter prep with herbal concoctions. Plus I got some time to do a bit of other things with the boys and for myself.

There are a lot of photos:

Busy with herbs. Tis the season!prep fire cidreherb infusionssmudgeLove our sunsets!sunset at Shubie Happy!boys jump shubieThe season for knitting!yarnyoga socksWe have spent many a day outside enjoying the fall weather.pixie cupsmushroomsmushroomred leafPretzel making!pretzel makingpretzelsThe Lunar Eclipse was a big deal for us. The boys stayed up late to watch. Totally worth it!
eclipsesclipse morningThe moon the morning after the eclipse.moon eclipes morningLessons!fortMore fun outside.bball stuckbballLove all of the colours!leavesTrying to catch the leaves as they fall.
catching leavesChipmunk!
chipmunkFeeding the chickadees is a favourite pastime of ours. It never gets old!feeding chickadeesWe love the hemlocks at our local park. So big and beautiful!path of trees hemlockWe went to a friend’s house and picked cranberries in her back yard! How cool is that! Thanks, Dawn! xxpicking cranberriescranberriesLove Dawn’s yard. There is always many a treasure to be found.salamanderMy bit of time to make some fun art. (more on my blog)my doodleart girlBirthday Lego making together. 🙂bday legoNew socks!pikachu socksMore outdoor fun!steve levitatingjumpHalloween fun!witchesSplatoon Inklings! I had to take a quick pic as they rushed from house to house!InklingsBrains!brainshalloween candy Who doesn’t love Pop Rocks?!pop rocksWeekday mornings. Someone always end up getting rolled up in the yoga mat – yoga sushi!xman sushilessonsMinecraft Lego table making!lego tableIt’s always a lot of fun outside. The boys loved raking the leaves and even went out to do it of their own accord. This may be why…it’s fun to bag them…or fun to play with the bag!leaf funThey also decided to whittle the hammers they made a while ago so that the handles were rounds and then filed smooth. Love this stuff.boys and wooden hammersWith all the leaves we collected I decided to frame them. I love how they look. framing leavesNighttimes consist of games of all kinds. 🙂scrabbleeye see youHome made bread. Oh man, that’s good.
challahEek! The Eyes of Cthulhu!chthulhuOne of our bridges is being completely redone without closing it down. Amazing, right? the big liftHe loves tamari almonds and loves making them almost as much!
tamari almond preptamari almondsThese are a couple of big camera pics – as in the real thing and not my phone. Love these guys.

06Nov2015_Boys and leaves_03 06Nov2015_Boys and leaves_17 06Nov2015_Boys and leaves_10Hope you’ve had just as wonderful a fall season as we have. Yesterday we got our first taste of snow. It was a quick one and nothing stayed on the ground but still exciting and beautiful.


Kiwi Crate fun

This morning was full of excitement as the boys opened their first Tinker Crate by Kiwi Crate. I cannot even recall how I heard about these cool kits but shortly before I ordered this one a friend had just received their first box and their daughter loved it. So we took a chance.

I ordered the Tinker Crate for ages 9-12. One for both boys. They shared well as they took turns putting together the kit with the directions.

They got to make a Zoetrope and isn’t that the coolest first project!! We’ve been wanting to make one but just haven’t gotten around to it so this was certainly a treat.

03Feb2015Zoetrope & Snow_01The kit comes with everything you need to make it, except scissors. So it’s perfect.

03Feb2015Zoetrope & Snow_02There are marbles that go below the base of the zoetrope to help it glide along smoothly.

03Feb2015Zoetrope & Snow_03The kit even comes with pictures to place in the film holder and they are numbered on the back to make sure they go in in the right order. It also comes with three blank sheets for making your own!

03Feb2015Zoetrope & Snow_05We had to show a couple of videos just for fun. The kit also notes some tips such as shining a light on the zoetrope as you spin it so that you can see the moving image better. It helped with the videos too.

Xman read through the whole Tinkerzine, a magazine that comes with the kit which explains the history of animation from the Lumber brothers to Edison. He was completely enthralled.

03Feb2015Zoetrope & Snow_06 03Feb2015Zoetrope & Snow_04L loved putting together the kit but once he’d played with it a few times he was itching to go outside and dig a tunnel through the big pile of ice and snow that came down yesterday. I can’t blame him. Super fun childhood memories for me!

Eventually we got to our lessons and the boys were the first to use my new yarn bowl. It arrived yesterday with the Kiwi Crate and they were excited to try it out. Is it awesome and on sale and the shipping is very reasonable. It is an early birthday gift from my husband. 🙂

You should get one. 😉

03Feb2015Zoetrope & Snow_09

L making his hat.03Feb2015Zoetrope & Snow_08 03Feb2015Zoetrope & Snow_07X making a scarf.

03Feb2015Zoetrope & Snow_11

L really wanted to go back outside and dig and Xman joined him with a ladle and a pie cutter to help cut through the ice which worked quite well. The ladle got bent a bit but all in fun, I say. The boys stayed outside in -11C plus windchill for over an hour and came in tired and sweaty. Time for a snack and warm chocolate mylk!

There was just a bit of ice on the windows this morning…

03Feb2015Zoetrope & Snow_10

Luckily, not all of the windows got the freezing rain on them. I was able to take a picture of the boys having a great time clearing away the frozen snow from the back door. Thank you, boys! 🙂

03Feb2015_Zoetrope & Snow_12





Today we celebrate Brigid, the goddess of water and fire. It is now about halfway between winter and spring and as the sun is in our skies longer we start to notice the days are longer.

As part of our lessons today, we talked about Brigid (Saint Brigid is her Christian name) and read a story from Circle Round and then made Brigit soup and goldfish crackers. L decided to call the soup Fire Soup as the ingredients are like the colours of the sun and Brigid is the goddess of fire. The crackers, since I didn’t have fish cookie cutters and simply scored them into squares – someone should really make tessellated cookie cutters by the way – are now called Fire Crackers. Cool, right?

…and it was all sooo good!



A busy but good day

Yesterday was a darn cold day. We didn’t go out for the trail walk as planned due to the road conditions outside of the city. We did, however, go to Chapters so that the boys could use some of their holiday money to buy more Lego, Minecraft Lego. But, we had to finish our lessons first and I have to say, it was smooth going!

I happily wore the hat that I just finished knitting the night before. So warm. Love it!


Our lessons include handwork. X is knitting a scarf on needles and L is using one of the loom kits. He is so adept at it. If I can get him to do even 15 minutes a day he will have it finished in no time!

L hat

Xman and I did some time-telling practice with this fun little book I picked up a while ago. The pages are magnetic as are the little pieces so it’s quite fun! Xman is pretty good with telling time but when it comes to analog without the numbers it takes a bit of practice.

clock clock practiceI took some time during their copy work to prepare some kale chips – so good!


And these cookies…oh my goodness you just have to try them – so many good things to be found.

Pixie cookies

Lessons done and off we go to get the Lego. I have to say, Minecraft and Lego really is the perfect combination…

l lego X lego

While the boys Lego’d it up I took a bit of time to check out these new arrivals and put that Dreamscapes book to good use right away!


*if you do get the pattern for the hat here are a couple of corrections:

Row 17: *k5, p6, k5, p1* to end
Row 18: *k3, p10, k3, p1* to end

A busy and fun New Year’s Day!

As I previously posted, yesterday was the first snowfall of the season and we were all very excited as the big flakes floated down and muffled the city sounds. So beautiful indeed!

After lunch, the boys went outside to play a bit while I busied myself indoors – after taking some quick pics of them, of course. The snow was a bit sticky but it made trying out the new slide no less fun!

01Jan2015_NYE Fun_01 01Jan2015_NYE Fun_03Mooooon. 🙂

01Jan2015_NYE Fun_02

After a dinner of home-made pizza (so yum!) I sat down with the boys and they broke out their new felting kit and string art.

Xman had a bit of help from me placing the pins into the cardboard for his string art. It’s a tricky business getting them straight, I know, from my own string art creations when I was a kid! We didn’t get all of the pins in but it was a good start.

01Jan2015_NYE Fun_04

01Jan2015_NYE Fun_05

I was quite impressed with L’s determination with the felting, especially this being his (our) first time with needle felting. He became quite good with the needle and by the end I knew I didn’t have to keep a close eye on what he was doing to make sure he didn’t felt his fingers!

01Jan2015_NYE Fun_06

The boys are totally hooked on Kirby since they borrowed a wii game from their friends. L decided to forego making a critter with instructions from the kit and make a Kirby instead. Not bad. Not bad indeed, especially for the first time. I’d say L is pretty pleased! =¬) (face made by L)01Jan2015_NYE Fun_07

And then today, for post-breakfast snack…popcorn! This time with some coconut oil and salt. Oh my goodness!02Jan2015_NYE Fun_08



Maskwa Trail

The weather around here lately has been mild but very rainy meaning many a day spent inside during this holiday season. I am sure the boys didn’t mind as they got their share of playing Super Smash Bros and Minecraft (along with some cool Minecraft figures for L), reading new books, playing holiday songs on the keyboard (Xman is addicted), practicing new magic tricks and learning to play Forbidden Desert – super awesome game by the way.

Yesterday, winter came without snow but definitely with low temperatures. So we all bundled up in long johns, pants and then snow pants, neck warmers and hats and hoods, oh my! and met some friends for a trail walk in -10C with an even colder windchill. Brrrrr!

Even the boys didn’t complain about bundling up for a walk in the cold – a sure sign of being indoors for too many days!

We met at Blue Mountain – Birch Cove Lakes Wilderness Area at a trail opening near the Maskwa aquatic club. Guess I note that for my sake so I can remember the name. Age has it’s not so great parts – too many things zooming around in the brain! 🙂

We had a great time climbing up the steep trail ways, picking icicles (and bringing home the moss-covered ones which, to note, didn’t even melt in the car on the way home!), throwing rocks into the frozen area of the lake, and traversing planked walkways over semi-frozen ponds. As always, there was so much to look at for us all and I stopped a few times to take some quick pics.

Surprisingly, we all stayed toasty warm and left feeling energized from being in nature and breathing in the crisp, fresh air. Totally worth the bundling!!

Love love love moss!

30Dec2014_Maskwa Trail_03 This walkway was a bit slippery in one spot and wet clothing is no fun so we were extra careful for our first trek.

30Dec2014_Maskwa Trail_01Good friends make for good company!

30Dec2014_Maskwa Trail_06Love the ice formations on the twigs and rocks!

30Dec2014_Maskwa Trail_0530Dec2014_Maskwa Trail_04Cozy family.

30Dec2014_Maskwa Trail_07

Frozen mossy-ness. The boys were punching holes through the ice as they walked, watching the water burble up through the holes. 30Dec2014_Maskwa Trail_10

This was a wonderful trail experience and we will definitely be visiting here again come freezing temps or warm, sun-filled days (which will return some day)! Happy trailing!