Tuesday, December 22, 2009

face lift

so i had originally gone for the minimalist approach to my blog 'look' but after seeing rebecca's beautiful blog transformation i decided to spruce mine up a bit. thanks rebecca for the awesome link for my 'face lift'.

advent conspiracy

our pastor has been doing a series on the advent conspiracy. it got steve and i thinking. why do we spend so much $$ at christmas time? why do we have to give gifts to tell people that we are thinking about them and that we love them? steve's family really minimized gift giving this year and instead we put our money together and sent it down to 3 girls in mexico whose mother passed away and they are now on their own. then my siblings decided to draw names and set a smaller budget and just buy for one person each rather than everyone. i feel SO much better! i never realized how stressful it can be to buy for people. constantly asking yourself:
will they like this?
would they rather have that?
did i spend enough?
what if they give me something better?
....... it's ridiculous!!!! it felt good to buy less 'stuff' and instead take the time that would be spent shopping and spend it with family and friends. i have a few gifts under my tree, but not many. steve and i are not getting anything for each other this year. we are going to spend christmas day snowshoeing together and then i'll make us dinner. we are planning a get-away for spring break and we feel like we would rather put the money towards that then christmas gifts for each other. does anyone else feel like christmas shopping is getting really out of hand? do people actually truly appreciate the gifts they receive? i don't feel like i am as thankful as i should be for the money and time people sacrifice to get my gifts.
anyway, i just thought i would rant a little and maybe some of you will consider spending less money and spending more time with your loved ones next year.

i have tried to attach the little video on advent conspiracy but it won't work. please click on the link. it's short. take a minute to watch it.

Thursday, December 17, 2009

the season of junk

everyone seems to be doing christmas baking and i am just not into it. growing up my mom never did some huge baking day at christmas.....honestly i don't understand why everyone does. why do we need more junk this time of year. we already know we are going to have a ton of chocolate at christmas, and pie and other goodies at get togethers....why make more treats for daily consumption. don't misunderstand me, i LOVE treats (sweet or salty) but i don't need to be tempted anymore to eat them then i are on a regular basis. well on monday i decided that I would do some baking. i thought i would just make one thing of cookies to bring to the christmas party with our bible study group. denise sent me an awesome recipe for chocolate peppermint snowball cookies so i thought i might as well make those. then i came across my uncle's recipe for peanut clusters, then my grandpa's recipe for his yummy sweet pancakes and then one for a mocha chocolate cake. i made my grocery list and headed to the store. going through the check out was extremely embarrassing.....if you have read my previous blog about shopping you will know what i mean (if not please read it). when i got home i began.

first i decided to double the cookie recipe. little did i know that it would make 6 dozen!!!!! then i began making the peanut clusters. after 2 hours i was sick of baking. i packaged everything up and called it a day. i was overwhelmed by how much junk i had. i decided to take some over to my neighbour (but she ended up sending me home with a plate of her baking so that didn't really help solve my problem. I then sent home a ton of cookies and peanut clusters with ashley. next i took a little sampling to lindsay when we met up for lunch. next i took them to bible study and hardly any was eaten. today i took my tin of cookies to work and lindsay ate a million of them but i still have some left!!!!! ahhhhh!!!!!! the tin is staying at work tomorrow until all the cookies are gone. yesterday i made the yummy sweet pancakes. dude i forgot how much i love them!!!! man oh man. if anyone wants to try them let me know and i will give you the recipe. i still need to make the chocolate cake. i might make it this weekend and bring it to steve's family christmas thing on sunday evening. hopefully people will be into eating it or i will have another problem on my hands. i know what you are thinking...."why do you keep making stuff?? just stop". don't you get it? I CAN'T!!!!!! i bought all of the ingredients and some of them don't keep (such as buttermilk) so I need to use it. if you want some baking....let me know.

Friday, December 4, 2009

books, books and more books

lately i have been really in to kids books. i read lots of them each week at work and some are super lame. i am on a quest to find the best ones out there. ones that are just absolutely hilarious, ones that touch my heart and ones that teach important lessons. i have been borrowing books from Laurie's classroom the past few weeks. I go in to her room, rummage through her book shelf and find one that looks promising. i recently made a trip to Indigo with Laurie and Dawn and picked up a few great picture books. They are: Scaredy Squirrel by Melanie Watts(which is a children's library staple apparently), Have I Got A Book For You by Melanie Watts and Can We Talk About The Elephant In The Room by Lane Smith. Hilarious!!! They are so good. Then I went to our Scholastic Book Fair at school and bought Scaredy Squirrel Makes A Friend by Melanie Watt (of course) and some other princess book (sorry i can't remember the title or the author right now and it's in the car that Steve is driving right now) but it was recommended by one of the librarians and I have been told that it's quite funny. I would love to get a big collection of kids books together over the years. i love reading to the class i work with. i often read to them while they eat. it's so cute to see them starring at the book with their mouths wide open and jam all over their faces. haha! most of them laugh a ton and make a lot of connections to their own lives through the book. it's so fun! i work with a student who has autism. often she doesn't show a lot of expression on her face but when a book is being read to her she is so engaged. she smiles a ton and laughs along with everyone else. i can't get enough of it!! if YOU have some great book suggestions for me please share them with me.