Friday, December 30, 2011

Shopping prep...

I don't have much time to blog today. I've spent my "free time" (if that's what you can call nap time around here) doing up our shopping list.
Ah, the shopping list. We each have our own way of doing one. Some just scribble down what they think they need and others, like me, have charts and graphs, store layouts and flyers ready for price matching. 

Yes, grocery shopping for me is not just something we have to do once in a while, it is a full on family activity!
We price match here. For those of you who don't know what price matching is, where have you been? It's only the best way to save time AND money! You go through your local grocery flyers, find the deals and when you go shopping at your favourite store you find the same item, show them the flyer and they give you the same price! You save time from having to drive from one place to the next and money because if you only shopped at one store you'd have to pay their regular price for that item instead of the discounted price.
Yes, shopping is not just going to get food, it takes planning, prep work, and lists! We've worked it out so that now it doesn't take us long to go shopping, but the prep time before hand sure does!
We plan our meals a week to two weeks ahead and then shop accordingly. It takes time but we feel we save money. It's not cheap feeding a family of four on one income, especially now that all four members are eating "regular" food! I think it's worth the time and energy. 
What kind of shopper are you?

Thursday, December 29, 2011

Coming to an end...

We have a tradition in our home that we don't take the Christmas decoration down until the 6th of January. This comes from Mr. Rooster's side of the family and since I love Christmas so much I don't have a problem with it at all! The longer the better!

We still have a week left to enjoy all of our festive decorations and it makes me sad to think about taking them all down. This Christmas has been a special one for me. This is B-Man's first Christmas, something I never got to do with Carebear because she was born a week before Christmas so her first Christmas we were so exhausted we didn't do much to celebrate it.

So this year was our first time celebrating a "first Christmas" with any of our kids! It was magical and wonderful. We did a lot of holiday traditions that I hold so dear!

Paper chains
Decorating the Christmas tree

Making a Gingerbread house (or in our case a Gingerbread Train)

Making hand crafts (this is B-Man's hand)

This is Carebear's hand!

It was also our first Christmas celebrating in our own house on Christmas morning. We got the wonderful job of playing Santa! The excitement of putting all the gifts under the tree, setting up the milk and cookies (eating the milk and cookies) and filling the stockings! It was magical and such an honour!

Cookies and milk that Santa ate!
We all got up and ran past the tree to eat breakfast! A tradition from my childhood. We ate breakfast and read the Nativity story (a first for us) then finally we all got to see the tree together as a family! It was so special! We opened the gifts from Santa and our stockings! The kids had set up a Christmas treasure hunt for Mr. Rooster which was a lot of fun watching him search for gifts and clues :)
Seeing the tree for the first time as a family!
It was a wonderful Christmas with lots of joyful festivities! Seeing family, opening gifts, eating lots of delicious foods! 

So that is why I'm sad to take down the decorations, it will signal the end of a wonderful "first" Christmas!

I'm excited about next Christmas though. Carebear will be 3 and so will have a better understanding and more excitement over all the festivities. B-Man will be 19 months and will be running around (my poor Christmas tree LOL).

There are so many wonderful things to look forward to next year's Christmas, but I will always treasure and remember our first "real" Christmas together as a family!

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Evil Co-sleeping and why I do it!

I am one of those dreaded co-sleepers you hear about. 
I'm not a hippy,  new aged, or "Crunchy" Mommy, I'm a Mom that finds something that works and does it. I'll try most anything and as long as it works and sits right with me, I'll do it.
You really do act differently with each child and the difference between Carebear and B-Man are HUGE! I was terrified about everything with Carebear! I think back now to how paranoid I was with her and laugh. I was a new Mom, with zero experience and a TON of advice from EVERYONE who thought they should give it! I had so many mixed messages, so much contradicting information that I never knew what to really think. 

For each study that said you shouldn't there were an equal amount that said you should. 

I learned quickly that what you SHOULD do is what works for you!

One of those areas was sleep!!
Carebear (like a lot of babies) was a terrible sleeper. She would wake up every 30 to 40 minutes each night, and we were exhausted! I had no idea what to do, or how to do it. I read lots of books, and listened to advice but nothing seemed to work.
One thing that did was co-sleeping. I would put Carebear on the bed with me and Mr. Rooster would sleep in the spare room. This also worked so that Mr. Rooster could actually get some sleep for work the next day. 

We did this for a long time and although it didn't stop her from waking every few hours, it did help me get some sleep because I didn't have to get up , walk across the room, get her back to sleep and then go back to bed. I could just settle her and then pass back out.
We got a lot of grief from family about this arrangement so we just kept it to ourselves most of the time. But it worked. We got sleep at night and that was the most important thing. 
We were told that if we co-slept that Carebear would NEVER be able to sleep in her own room or bed!
Well, in the end, Carebear from the age of 13 months has slept happily in her own room, in her own bed! We take her up, get her dressed, do her bedtime routine, put her in bed, say good night, close the door and she'll play in her room till she falls asleep, no fuss, and it takes us less than 10 minutes each night (longer on bath nights).
It's simple and easy. Nap time is the same way, no fuss!
So, I guess that co-sleeping wasn't as EVIL as we were told it was, and the end result is what most parents dream of - easy bedtime!

With B-Man I felt the pressure again not to co-sleep and so he was put into his crib from day one! I didn't mind so much but again, just like his sister he is a terrible sleeper, and was up even more often. :(
We tried a bunch of different things but the past week the only sleep relief I get is to co-sleep with him.
Not what I had planned but you do what works.
I try to be as safe as possible, and I am such a light sleeper that even the smallest noise or movement wakes me up. He sleeps far from me, spread out on the bed with no pillows or blankets near him. He does spend the first half of the night in his crib but the second half seems to be rough on him so he's up a lot and comes to bed with me.

I'm not sure if he'll continue to co-sleep, but if he does, I don't mind. The most important part for me is getting sleep, precious, precious sleep!

I try not to listen to peoples "advice" now. We each do what we think is best for our little ones. We all have different ways of doing things, but we all do what works for us!

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

So many toys...

Christmas has come and passed and with it comes the toys! Carebear's birthday is a week before Christmas and so add a few more toys to that mix and now I can't get into my playroom!

Toys! Yes, bouncy, noisy, funny, loud, moving, silly toys! Tons of them!
But with the new toys comes something that is good and sad at the same time, the donation box!
I love donating things, and then perusing for new stuff (much to Mr. Roosters dismay) but donating things makes me feel good and helps to keep my house from getting too cluttered!

But today was a sad day as I put some of the older toys into a box, realizing my little ones are too big for some, or have bright, new shiny ones to replace the old.
One toy in particular breaks my heart because it plays a song, a song that I remember Carebear listening to over and over to the point of annoyance, and one that B-Man listens to now.
Although annoying, it's a song that reminds me of their baby years and always makes me smile.

It is my hope to have at least one more chicky and it makes me sad to think that my last little chick might not hear this song. I'm sure it won't matter to anyone but me, but for some reason, it matters. It's a sign that my little chicks are growing up and the things that they once used for entertainment are not important any more.

It's a bitter sweet moment in life to realize that your little ones are growing up and moving on...and my little ones are still so small.
Yes, it's time to donate and clear out some of the toys to make room for the new, and in some cases, just to make room.

Here is one side of the playroom right now! The cabin is inside just for the winter but will be outside in the Springtime. Sorry the pics are so blurry, we're having technical difficulties with our camera!

Thanks to all that contributed to the toys this year, each one is played with and loved, some even by me.

PS ~ Mr. Rooster and I decided to keep the toy that makes the least for now! I may record the song so that I can listen to it years from now!

Monday, December 26, 2011

Random toys in random places...

My dear daughter loves the way I clean. She thinks I do an amazing job sweeping, moping, dusting, scrubing, and can't wait for me to bring the vacuum out. She admires my technique at organizing and decluttering and don't even get me started on dishes and laundry!!
She loves it, well at least this is what I think, because she sure makes enough messes and disasters for me to clean during the day, she MUST really love the way I clean! 

I know that this is just "kids being kids" but I swear some days Carebear does things just to watch me clean up afterwards! LOL

One of her favourite games she plays is "hide the toys so Mommy can find them and put them away for me". She likes this game so much that she plays it EVERY DAY!!! 

I'm always finding little toys in random places, and have to wonder what was going through her head at the time. Did she plan on putting that toy there? Was she playing when something came up and she left them there?

 I'm sure sometimes it's forgetfulness, or maybe these spots are safe places for her treasures,  but it always makes me chuckle to myself when I discover some random toy in some random place! 

Today I found these two in my pantry, just sitting there, looking at me, no kid in sight!
My thoughts drifted to;
1) What was she doing in the pantry?
2) Why did she leave them in there?
3) Did she take anything out in exchange??

Yes, my darling daughter loves to add a bit more work to my already busy day, by helping "put her toys away" in random places!

Little does she know that as she gets older and older, she'll have to start to help put them in their proper place! :) Muahahahaa (evil Mom laugh) - yes there is such a thing as an evil Mom laugh! :) 

And yes, I know, soon B-Man will be joining this game!!

Saturday, December 24, 2011

Organized Chaos

Today I was blog searching when I came across one that really hit home with me. "DIRT"Y LITTLE SECRETS a blog about becoming an "ideal homemaker". It really got me thinking about what I do each day and how I can try to perfect it even more.

I try to keep my house organized and clean, try being the word when you have little ones. I have a cleaning list, of daily cleaning chores and a schedule that we loosely follow on my fridge that I do each day.

 One of the phrases that "DIRT"Y LITTLE SECRETS posted was one that my Grandmother and Mother always drilled into me as a child and one that I try to still follow today.

 "A place for everything, and everything in it's place." 

That is such an important phrase to me because I think that it's key to keeping a house organized. I often look at different places in my house that seem to have 'clutter' and try to figure what is cluttering up that spot and how can I find those things a better place to rest instead of that one pile.

Sometimes I have success, other times (like the top of my fridge right now) I don't have the much success. LOL
I like a home that feels welcoming and like you can just walk in, sit down and relax, and I hope that for those of you who have been to my house you feel that way. I think being organized helps to create that feeling.

I have a long way to go and sometimes I doubt I'll ever feel like my house is 100% organized and clean. I find myself constantly scrubbing something, sweeping somewhere or going through a drawer to organize!

I wish I could invest a large amount of money in bins! I LOVE bins, but have never had enough money to invest in a bunch (except for my Christmas stuff). Oh cdnkaro if only I could have your problem and have too many bins! That's my dream!!
That and shelves! I need more shelves! I'd love to have everything in bins on shelves! LOL Now that's a dream!!!

I love being a homemaker! It's been a dream of mine to be a mother and homemaker and I do what I can to make our home run smooth and relaxed. 

Thanks  "DIRT"Y LITTLE SECRETS and fourunder4plustwo (cdnkaro) for the inspiration and motivation to organize the chaos!

Friday, December 23, 2011

So many cookies...

I have never made so many cookies in one sitting! I found this amazing cookie recipe on for soft oatmeal cookies. I bought a ton of instant oatmeal a while back and needed a good use for it. Well this seemed like a good use!

I made the first batch and added raisins! They turned out amazing and for the small amount of 'on hand' ingredients they required they made over 4 dozen 2" diameter delicious cookies!!

I was thrilled but felt there just wasn't enough cookies...hmmm

So I made a second batch but I had run out of raisins! I searched my cupboards but couldn't think of something that would taste good till I realized I had a ton of apple and cinnamon instant oatmeal!! So I made over 4 dozen apple cinnamon oatmeal cookies and they are freakin' amazing!!!

Such a simple recipe and such good cookies!!

I think Santa will approve this year! ;)

Soft Oatmeal Cookies


  • 1 cup butter, softened
  • 1 cup white sugar
  • 1 cup packed brown sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 3 cups quick cooking oats


  1. In a medium bowl, cream together butter, white sugar, and brown sugar. Beat in eggs one at a time, then stir in vanilla. Combine flour, baking soda, salt, and cinnamon; stir into the creamed mixture. Mix in oats. Cover, and chill dough for at least one hour.
  2. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F (190 degrees C). Grease cookie sheets. Roll the dough into walnut sized balls, and place 2 inches apart on cookie sheets. Flatten each cookie with a large fork dipped in sugar.
  3. Bake for 8 to 10 minutes in preheated oven. Allow cookies to cool on baking sheet for 5 minutes before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely.

Nutritional Information open nutritional information

Amount Per Serving  Calories: 218 | Total Fat: 8.8g | Cholesterol: 38mg

Thursday, December 22, 2011

Food Families

Carebear has quite the imagination and today she proved just how extensive it is!

Today as we were eating lunch she was munching on a piece of Bologna when he hear her saying, "Mommy, Mommy." I look, thinking she's talking to me and much to my surprise she has chewed her Bologna into two pieces and made one 'Mommy' and one 'baby'. She was playing with them and making them have a conversation. She played Mommy and Baby for a while before eating both pieces with a happy grin on her face. LOL

This is our Bologna family

I thought this was a cute thing to do, and it continued later in the day! I was privileged to meet The Pita Family, and later The Apple Family. 
She had all sorts of food families today and they all had long conversations about the days events and then were eaten!

Thursday, December 15, 2011

This little piggie...

Today I was rooting through my sock drawer looking for something warm to wear, when I came across something deep in the bottom that I hadn't seen in years! At first it shocked me to see them, since I thought I must have thrown them out, but alas, there they were!
My Toe Socks!!!

Do you remember toe socks?
For those of you who don't remember, they have been the craze off and on since the 1970's but my fine pair were all the way from England and bought in 2004! Oh ya, they sure brought back memories! LOL

I wore them all day and loved every memory inducing second of it! Carebear just looked at me like I was strange (a look I'm all too familiar with) and Mr. Rooster joined her! LOL

I didn't care, it was fun to wear my toe socks! It reminded me of the crazy Mother Hen I used to be! I've worn and done some pretty interesting thing in my day, and used to be pretty fun and crazy, but if my kids ask, I didn't do any of it ;)

and yes..the toes say "flirt" :)

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

And finally....

This time of year is crazy for most people but in our household it's just a bit extra crazy! Carebear's birthday is one week before Christmas and so it's been a buzz around here with things to do, add NO SLEEP since little B-Man is on a sleep strike, let's just say Mother Hen is about to pass out! Oh and now both chickies are sick with a cold! Yay!
Even now my eyes are glazing as I try to type!
It's been nearly a week since I intended to write this blog post and yet even now the hours are passing and another day may pass before it's actually up and on my blog!

But this blog post has more meaning to me than just a funny story about my little chicks, this one makes me have to think and lately that is something I don't have a lot of time for! :)

Someone that I admire a lot  (fourunder4plustwo) nominated me for the "Tell me about yourself" blog award and I must say that I feel very honoured to be thought of :) so big thanks to her :)

So here it goes! Please keep in mind on a good day I can barely form good sentences so in my sleep deprived, glazed eyed state, here goes nothing! LOL

7 Things You May Want to Know About Me, Mother Hen.....

1) I used to jump from one thing to the next without giving it much thought or realizing the consequences. I now research and make a plan before I start something new, which is a HUGE difference for me. I'm still not perfect but a lot more settled than I ever was before. This is all due to Mr. Rooster, who has helped me calm down a lot. He is my rock and helps to keep me centred. Every once in a while I get him to loosen up and do something spontaneous, but for the most part, he keeps me focused!

2) For the past 4 years I have been on a long and exciting spiritual journey! I was raised in an Agnostic/Atheist house, we were never discouraged but never encouraged to believe anything. My father was an Atheist and believed that when you died, poof that was it, you were just gone. On the night that he passed away I just knew that all the things he believed about death were wrong and thus started my journey to find out what I truly believed. It's been a long, bumpy and very lonely journey but one that has brought me more peace than I ever dreamed and more love then I ever knew possible!

3) I LOVE BEING A MOMMY!!!! Ok, this might not be a shocking secret to some of you, but the level in which I love being a Mommy always seems to shock me! Each day brings new challenges and I feel proud of myself each time I am able to overcome them! I have discovered such strength in myself that I never knew was there, and so much love that I can't stand it sometimes! My children are the most important people in the whole world and I am truly blessed to get to spend each day with them, watching them learn, discover and grow!! I'm not sure what the future holds but I hope to have another little one one day, or as many as God will give me!

4) I use LOL way too much! I use it in e-mails, blog posts, and this year, I even used it in a Christmas card! I don't know why I use it as much as I do, but I use it all the time! LOL see there ya go!

5) I have recently started a Pet Portrait business. I drew some portraits a few years ago as Christmas gifts and as much as I really loved doing them I never had the courage or the confidence to do anything else. This year I have had to face a lot of demons in my life and one was to get enough courage to start this business. So I did! This has been one of my proudest moments. I've had a few clients so far and I'm really enjoying it. As much as this will probably never be a "full time" career, I am proud to call myself an artist, that has been a  life long dream of mine! :)

6) I have an amazing and fantastic husband! If you've ever met Mr. Rooster, you know that he is kind, funny, smart, patient and caring, but what you might not know is that I know this too! :) and tell him every day! He has sacrificed a lot for me and I don't think he'll ever know how truly grateful I am. He always surprises me with how sweet and sensitive he is. He is an amazing father. He's so loving and caring with the kids! He works hard all day and still comes home ready to play and help with the kids! He loves to get on the ground and play with the toys, I mean, kids :) He loves to read stories, play games, help feed them, bathe them and changes his fair share of dirty diapers! He is an amazing father and our kids are so lucky to have a Dad like him!

7) I sometimes surprise myself with how much I've changed in the past few years since I've met Mr. Rooster, and although some may disagree, I think it's all been for the better. I have come to see some people for who they really are and have had to make changes to my relationships with them. I wear my heart on my sleeve and am such a guilt ridden person that I tend to get hurt all the time. :( I care way too much about people and what they think that I would rather put myself out than to disappoint or hurt them in any way.
I've had to "grow a back bone" as some would call it and start to stick up for myself. This has been scary but at the same time refreshing. I hope to I continue to see more of these good changes in myself.

So there are 7 things you may or may not know about me :)
Part of this award is to nominate 15 other people but shamefully with being as busy as I am, I don't have the time to read as many blogs as I wish I could!
When I have the time to start I will find some to add to this and award them all! :)

Friday, December 9, 2011

Packing for our journey...

We go for a walk every day, no matter the weather. We live in such a great area now with so much to do, that it's been a real pleasure to get out and about! We've gotten our "get ready" routine down to a fine art now and the chickies know that when the big stroller comes out it's time to get ready to go!
For the longest time now Carebear has taken it upon herself to help "pack" the stroller for me and each trip I am amazed at what she deems as "important" for our walk.
Yesterdays items included; half an eaten carrot, her sippy cup and a snowglobe. :)
I'm usually busy with B-Man that I don't notice what she's put into the stroller till later when I'm emptying out the bottom.
The other day I pulled out two sopping wet stuffed puppies and discovered that she felt the need to include a leaking sippy cup that had honey lemon water in it no less. Now not only did I have two sopping wet stuffed puppies they were also sticky along with everything else under the stroller! Fun!
I often wonder what goes through her mind as she starts her list of thing to pack and always have a chuckle at what she think she'll need on our journey! :)

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Today I invented the "Baby Snooze Button"

It's been a while...a long while, but with birthdays, Christmas, up coming work, pet portraits and NO SLEEP I just haven't had the time or energy to write!

But today was a funny, yet exhausting day and so I'll tell you about a really neat thing I invented!

Today I invented the "Baby Snooze Button"

B-Man had a terrible night last night. This morning at the crack of stupid he laid there WIDE awake looking at me, waiting to start his day. All I wanted was 5 more minutes of sleep, just 5 more!!
I hit the button on his Winnie the Pooh musical toy in his crib that plays music for 10 minutes, it plays a song he likes and usually puts him to sleep. As the music played I drifted back to sleep. Music stops, he starts to fuss again. I hit the button, he's quiet and I got 10 more minutes of sleep. 
This went on for about a half an hour when he finally decided that music wasn't gonna cut it any more, but hey! I got an extra 30 minutes of broken sleep!