Wednesday, April 30, 2008

green thumbs

I caught the gardening bug.
I have been obsessing about the garden for quite a while now.
It all started when we decided to hire a "professional" last year.
Not really something I would normally do, as I'm a do-it-yourself-kinda-gal, but big daddy convinced me that it would be so much easier to get someone to plan and execute the landscaping.
Besides neither one of us is really experienced when it comes to gardening- our last two places before this house didn't have a garden.
Gotta love loft and condo living...ah the good old days....
And this time last year we really didn't have the time to deal with it.
So we went ahead and let someone else plan and plant everything last year.
Long story short, I hated it and it totally wasn't what we had in mind.
several thousand dollars later.....
I pulled out a bunch of stuff and my parents (who are amazing gardeners) helped me re-jig things a bit.
I picked up some end of season plants and shrubs and hoped for the best over the fall and winter.
It was a really tough winter and a ton of things didn't make it, and unfortunately our "gardener" skipped town so I don't have any receipts for any of the plants that died.
News to me that most nurseries guarantee plants for at least one year, sometimes two.
No big deal when its just a few, but I'm talking 8 emerald cedars ($100 each!) and bunch of other stuff.
So big daddy and I spent the weekend planting, pruning, fertilizing and making numerous trips back and forth to Home Depot and our local nursery.
Lulu pitched in too.
and by pitching in I mean totally got in the way....but she was adorable none-the-less.
So after a full year of being frustrated and feeling ripped off, I am happy.
Happy about what we planted.
As a family.
So what if we were exhausted and filthy all weekend.
Now we can look at our yard and know that we planted every single thing and we get to watch them grow.
or not.....I'm keeping the receipts this time!
Sometimes it is in fact easier to just do things your self.
Well that is except maybe painting the trim and exterior of the house.
Now that's definitely something best left for a professional.

Friday, April 25, 2008

princess tea party

So I had every intention of writing a nice long sentimental post about how special my sweet (now three year old) Lulu is to me.
Also a brief account of the past year and what it has been like living with a two year old.
But once again, I'm a bit pressed for time (what mother isn't?)
I will say that I don't know that I agree with the term "the terrible two's" because they were anything but.
It was a very sweet year with a very sweet girl.
Not without its challenges of course, but fun none-the-less.
I hope three is as fun.
So a bit of a re-cap of the big day, which was yesterday...tisk tisk...didn't even post a birthday post on her special day.
What kind of a blogger mommy am I?
But I did manage to throw Lulu a princess tea party with some of her little pals.
My mom came into town to celebrate with all the little girls (and two lucky boys...) and Lulu was thrilled.
The weather was perfect and we managed to spend the afternoon outside.
Everyone was so sweet and so excited.
I loved watching Lulu with her favourite little school friends.
It was adorable.
So happy birthday Lulu.
I can't believe you are already three!

Would love to write more, but you are currently crawling all over me pretending to be a kitten and meowing and trying to lick my face.

and oh, the answer to your question this morning at 6:30 a.m.
"Am I still three today?"
is yes. xoxox
love mom

Saturday, April 19, 2008

missin you

Well almost two weeks of being a single parent are coming to an end tonight...
Big daddy is en route home after being in L.A.
Would love to write a big long mushy post about how much I love him and missed having him here,
but truth be told- I'm beat.
But we did miss him, despite having a busy busy time while he was away.
especially his little lady Lulu.
She kept pointing at all the planes in the sky today and asking if that's the one Daddy is on??
Lots of pointing seeing as we are on a bit of a flight path....
very sweet though.

anywhoo he should be here any second as he just emailed me from his crack-berry saying he on the way from the airport.
we love you big daddy & we are soo glad you are home!!!!
P.G. & Lulu xoxoxoxox

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

wordless wednesday

I'm not sure who came up with the wordless Wednesday concept- but I'm running with it today.
yummy chocolate chip ground almond meal cookies.
and yummy lulu.

I guess not an entirely wordless Wednesday.

Friday, April 11, 2008

on the menu

If I knew then, what I know now....

I have spent so much time worrying about what Lulu eats.
Does she eat enough?
Is she getting enough variety in her diet? enough protein? (the child really isn't a fan of meat)
enough fibre? enough fruit and veg? enough water?
She isn't what I would call a picky eater, but she definitely knows what she does and doesn't like.
Her favourite meal at the moment is edamame, brown rice (with bragg spray), tofu, miso soup and avocado.
She requests it almost daily.
oh and she likes a sip or two of green tea with it.

aside from Terroni she always asks to go out for sushi when it comes to choosing a restaurant.
I can't believe that we often let our two (almost three) year old decide where we eat out..
For breakfast it's cantaloupe, honeydew melon, strawberries with cottage cheese, sliced almonds and a bit of honey and a dash of cinnamon and either a blueberry flax waffle or french toast.
on busy mornings she's happy with a bowl of oatmeal and an orange juice and half a banana.
She loves broccoli with shaved parmesan cheese, steamed cauliflower with olive oil, capers, celery, roasted red peppers, and olives. She calls it her favourite cauliflower salad that I make.
Yay, she likes my cooking!!
Homemade soup and whole-wheat wraps are always good.
Hummus and pita, grapes, carrot sticks, almonds, dried cranberries and apricots, cheese and crackers, apple slices are often the snack of choice.
Last night she had papardelle pasta with home-made spinach pesto and pinenuts and it was a hit.
She wasn't into eating the mixed cherry tomato salad with fresh basil and balsamic vinegar.
but she did lick the Maldon Sea salt from each tomato.
Tonight she had couscous with chickpeas, apricots, roasted almonds cucumbers and smoked tofu.
Couldn't convince her to eat the slow cooked chicken that went in the tagine.
Too bad it was excellent- though admittedly a bit on the spicy side.
ah well....
She loves her pesto pizza or marinara pizza on Fridays with a glass of her all time fav Sanpellegrino-Aranciata.
I confess I love it too.
though we do try to keep that special for Friday nights only.
I remember as a kid being allowed to have pop and chips (or cheesies, or doritos...yummmm) on Friday night and it was such a treat.
So the point is, that I'm so happy that she is really starting to expand her palate and try new things.
It took a while, but I feel like we have arrived.
Maybe I can finally stop stressing so much (even if we think she is a vegetarian)
The petite-gourmand at last!

Sunday, April 06, 2008

water for elephants

Just finished this book a couple of weeks ago and thought it was worth mentioning.
Water for Elephants by Sara Gruen, is a story about a 90 year old man remembering his days with a circus during The Great Depression.
It was really moving and really made me stop and think about what it must be like to get old.
I was a big fan of the HBO series Carnivale and the setting kind of reminds me of that particular show, only there was no creepy guy with dark black evil eyes.
I find the 20's & 30's such a fascinating time in history and this book really takes you back to that era.
anyhow I really enjoyed it and hopefully Big daddy is too as he is currently reading it- this is a rare occurrence that we read the same book as we have totally different tastes in literature.
Something tells me he won't be reading The Boleyn Inheritance...

Anyone have any other great reads they can recommend?

Saturday, April 05, 2008

little bird

The greatest part about spring is how it totally transforms people.
Everyone seems to be walking around in this happy state and we all can breathe a collective sigh of relief that the long hard winter of 2008 is finally over.
The birds woke me this morning at six a.m. and not Lulu for a change and it was so lovely.
I'm glad they're back.
I just hope they keep it down a bit tomorrow morning.
With spring and the change of season comes lots of things to do and activities to attend.
Which is great in some ways, but already I'm feeling a tad overwhelmed by so many things going on and happening all at once.
In addition to pre-school, ballet and library reading program Lulu's dance card is quickly filling up.
And mine for that matter.
It seems as though everyone wants to come out of hibernation at the same time and plan get togethers.
I must say I'm not really big on the whole play date thing.
Once in a while is fine, and in fact quite welcome.
But I really don't like over loading Lulu or myself with too many things in a week.
I like having a day or two to spend with just Lulu and no one else.
Does that sound selfish?
Besides, she is really content on her own and doesn't need constant interaction with other kids 24/7.
I know I certainly don't.
She has actually started asking for some "alone time" which I think is fantastic.
I think it's important to be comfortable on your own.
We have some friends who are always on the go. As in, non-stop.
they have activities planned for the kids for everyday of the week and always have a house full of other kids.
Weekends they are out the door by around 8 a.m. rain or shine.
I seriously couldn't handle that.
Anyhow they are really sweet and I don't want to sound judgemental, but man...they seriously never stop.
It often makes big daddy & I feel like we don't do enough and a bit guilty.
But then I watch Lulu's behaviour and realize that it's good that she has down time (and plenty of it)
and that her main source of amusement is simply books, paper, crayons, and some other favourite toys.
Then again, she also finds a tiny pebble, stick or a pine-cone lying on the ground amusing.
Maybe we don't have a ton of cool plastic noise making toys for her to run around with but at least I can feel good about providing her with enough space and time to let her imagination be her most important source of amusement.
Which for me is the greatest gift I could give her
(and well, if I'm being

Wednesday, April 02, 2008

born yogis

Knock knock
Who's there?
Yoga who?
Yoga to try this; it feels goooood!

Downward facing dog

Cobra position

Warrior II

Triangle Pose

From a very early age Lulu has been a bit of a yogi.
Not entirely sure why.
It's not like I practice that often in front of her.
Maybe once a week- if that- and at a yoga studio, not at home.
When she was around 5 months or so we did a mommy/baby yoga class together.
But at that point the only position she could really do was Cobra.
When I was around six months pregnant I dragged big daddy to a New year's midnight yoga class, which was amazing.
Or at least I thought so...he almost fell asleep while in Mrtasana aka Corpse pose.
In fact he did, because I could hear him snoring next to me.
He was a good sport though.
I kept up with yoga throughout most of my pregnancy, or at least until I could no longer do a forward bend.
Yoga is one of those things that whenever I do it, I always think to myself that I really should do it more often.
Kind of like some other things....
errr... any-who... as I was saying,
It makes you feel good.
It feels great to just focus on your breathing and on all the muscles that we so often forget about.
especially when in the throes of being a busy mother.
carrying these little creatures around takes a toll on the ol' bod.
It's kind of like therapy, massage and working out all rolled into one.
At least that's been my experience.
Besides, I would be lying if I said I wouldn't love to have a nice firm yoga bum.
Firm everything for that matter.
So I hope Lulu keeps up with this passion for yoga.
I only wish I had more shots of her favourite poses
Tree pose and how could I forget her absolute fav?
Child's pose.


Tuesday, April 01, 2008


Well I know Easter is over...but I just threw away all the Easter eggs and leftover chocolate
(okay...more like ate all the leftover chocolate) I needed something to eat while watching Oprah's Big Give.
Let's just say that I was "giving" into my craving for chocolate.
And besides, Lulu really won't miss it.
I'm such a terrible mommy- eating my child's Easter bunny and telling her that it melted and is all gone.
Her dentist would be happy though.
So we packed up all her Easter crafts, paintings, bunnies & baskets and put them away for another year.
I can't believe how much art a kid can accumulate.
Do I keep it all?
I just can't bare to throw out any of her "master pieces".
I have a big plastic bin dedicated to her stuff and it's already full.
I'm glad she's into painting and crafts but at this rate we will need to rent another separate storage locker for all her artwork.

Good thing eggs are perishable.