Sunday, December 15, 2013

DIY: Head Band Holder

I'm not sure about others with daughters, but I often found head bands lying around all over the house - on the floor, on her dresser or desk, but no real spot to store them.  This frustrated frustrated me.

A couple months ago, I had this idea - I was going to create a head band holder - not sure how or when, but it was going to get done. And then, as I was rinsing out an ice cream tub, just like the one pictured, the idea came to me.

Today, while at Canadian Tire, I bought some really cool "Duck Tape", Lo helped me decide which pattern.  This stuff is awesome - so I'm going to watch for if it ever goes on sale.  It was $5.99  The patterns are awesome - and from what I've seen on line, you can make some pretty amazing things from Duck tape - who knew????  =D

I wrapped the Duck tape around the ice cream tub - this was a bit tricky at time - trying to keep the tape straight while going around an unevenly shaped circular container was a little frustrating.
But it all worked out and Lo has 2 super cute head band holders.

Let's hope it helps her keep her head bands in one spot instead of all over my house. Ha!

Happy Crafting!!!!!!

Thursday, November 28, 2013

The Sweetest Thing

 Ev: " are the best mom I've ever had."
Me: "Ah, bud, that's sweet"
Ev: "I know you are the ONLY Mom I've ever had..."
Me: "Do you think another Mom would be better?"
Ev: "No, Mom...cause you're perfect!"

My eyes filled with tears - as every mom, at one point, feels that they are failing.   Not living up to the many labels that characterize us Moms (soccer Mom, dance Mom, hockey Mom, crafty Mom, PTA Mom, Working Mom, SAHM, Mom) This came at the perfect time - to remind me that I am doing a good job at raising our children.

I am their "perfect" mom.  My kids are blessed to have me as their Mom...even when things don't feel
perfect.  When I feel tired and and don't feel like a good Mom...When I'd rather be at home or at work...When I feel like I'm spinning around in circles and just going through the motions..."You see the beauty is to remember that they call you Mom....and that label is priceless"

Thank you to "Finding Joy" for the extra reminders that Being Mom is Enough
Quotes taken from Finding Joy blog, "The Perfect Mom"

Wednesday, October 2, 2013

A new chapter awaits.....

7 years ago around this very time, I opened my home to two lovely little girls thus beginning my career as a home daycare provider. It was a wonderful way to stay home with L, who was just 1 at the time plus allowing me to care for children, a profession I adore.

Throughout the last 7 years, I have been blessed to have so many amazing children in my care. Some with me for shorter periods of time, others with me for much longer. The children in my care presently have all been with me for 5-6 years.  It's like they are a part of our family - the kids have so much fun.

Last year, after a spontaneous application to our local school board, I was hired on to work as a supply educational assistant. My families were so supportive and agreed to find alternate care on Fridays so that I can pursue my dream of working in a school.  My ideal plan has been to head back to work once E was in school FT.  With the Full Day Kindegarten in the final stages, I am hoping that I can get on to the ECE supply list and some day be in a kindergarten class full time.  My dream was always to be a kindergarten teacher.

At the end of August, I was offered a great (temporary) opportunity at my children's school - sadly I had to turn it down as I couldn't leave my families to find alternate care in such short notice. This was the push I needed to finally make a definite decision on the future of Smiles N Giggles Home Childcare.

On Thursday September 5th, I very sadly gave my families notice. And when I say "sadly",  I really mean I cried way more than I thought I would. It was so hard for me to know that I'm causing stress to my families.

 It was the most difficult decision I have ever had to make - I love doing home daycare and being home with my children, but feel it is time for me to move on and venture back into the working-outside-the-home world.

Last Thursday, I said good bye to 2 darling kids.  Des started with me in April of 2007, when he was 1 year old.  I have cared for him and his sister, now just doing after school care, for so many years.  It was so sad to see them go - the kids have become such great friends.
And now today, I will be saying goodbye to my last two -  darling little girls, Layla & Ella
 Ella, who one day may become my daughter in law, started with me 5 years ago and her sister last June. Both were only 1 and oh so adorable!

I know that they will be in good hands with their new providers and that we will see them often, at school and during play dates, yet I am still feeling so emotional about this change.

So, as of tonight - the doors of Smiles N Giggles will be closed....and while these doors are closing - new ones are opening.  I will continue to supply for the board as an EA on the days E is in school and keep trying to get onto the ECE supply list.

A big thank you to all of my wonderful families from October 2006 until today...I have loved caring for your children and thank you for trusting me to care for them, providing a loving and nurturing home away from home.

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

♥ MOM ♥

Happy Birthday to my beautiful mom!

For as long as I can remember...
You were always by my side,
To give me support, confidence and help.

For as long as I can remember...
You were always the person I looked up to,
So strong, so sensitive, so pretty.

For as long as I can remember...
You provided stability within our family,
Full of laughter, full of fun, full of love.

For as long as I can remember...
And still today,
You are everything a mother should be.

Whatever I have become is because of you....and I am forever thankful for you and our relationship.
You are an amazing Mom and Nana - we are all so lucky to have you in our lives.

I love you, Mom!

Thursday, May 9, 2013

Tuesday, April 30, 2013


Artists: SARAH  &

Wednesday, April 3, 2013

19 Things We Should Say to Children

I have seen this list a few times on Pinterest...and it really strikes a cord with me.  I try to be the best parent I can be for L and E.  I know that I am short with them at times, a little impatient, raise my voice more than I should...but they know how much I love and adore them (I hope) - Check out this list and see the wonderful things we should all be saying to our children. I recognize a few times when I can use some of the things on this list....

Bronte Creek Provincial Park 03/13
1. I love you! There is nothing that will make me stop loving you. Nothing you could do or say or think will ever change that.

2. You are amazing! I look at you with wonder! Not just at what you can do, but who you are. There is no one like you. No one!

Blue Jays Game 08/12
3. It’s all right to cry. People cry for all kinds of reasons: when they are hurt, sad, glad, or worried; when they are angry, afraid, or lonely. Big people cry too. I do.

4. You’ve made a mistake. That was wrong. People make mistakes. I do. Is it something we can fix? What can we do? It’s all over. You can start fresh. I know you are sorry. I forgive you.

5. You did the right thing. That was scary or hard. Even though it wasn’t easy, you did it. I am proud of you; you should be too.

Canada's Wonderland 10/11
6. I’m sorry. Forgive me. I made a mistake.

7. You can change your mind. It’s good to decide, but it is also fine to change.

8. What a great idea! You were really thinking! How did you come up with that? Tell me more. Your mind is clever!

9. That was kind. You did something helpful and thoughtful for that person. That must make you feel good inside. Thank you!

10. I have a surprise for you. It’s not your birthday. It’s for no reason at all.
Walt Disney World 10/12
Just a surprise, a little one, but a surprise.

11. I can wait. We have time. You don’t have to hurry this time.

12. What would you like to do? It’s your turn to pick. You have great ideas. It’s important to follow your special interests.

13. Tell me about it. I’d like to hear more. And then what happened? I’ll listen.

Christmas morning 2012
14. I’m right here. I won’t leave without saying good-bye. I am watching you. I am listening to you.

15. Please and Thank You. These are important words. If I forget to use them, will you remind me?

16. I missed you. I think about you when we are not together!
Canada's Wonderland 06/12

17. Just try. A little bit. One taste, one step. You might like it. Let’s see. I’ll help you if you need it. I think you can do it.

18. I’ll help you. I heard you call me, here I am. How can I help you? If we both work together, we can get this done. I know you can do it by yourself, but I’m glad to help since you asked.

19. What do you wish for? Even if it’s not yet time for birthday candles and we don’t have a wishbone, it’s still fun to hear about what you wish for, hope for, and dream about.

Christmas Eve 2012

(Link to original post HERE)

Tuesday, April 2, 2013

April 2nd is....


Today marks the 6th annual autism awareness day. Every year, autism organizations around the world celebrate the day with unique fundraising and awareness-raising events such as Light it up Blue - Many iconic landmarks, hotels, sporting venues, concert halls, museums, bridges and retail stores are among the hundreds of thousands of homes and communities that take part by installing a blue lightbulb or a special filter to buildings existing lights to portray the blue effect.  It's a beautiful way to show support.

While I didn't participate this year with any fundraising, I did wear blue today in support of this very special day.  I also did a little shopping....for the month of April,  Stella & Dot jewellery is donating 20% of total sales from their Autism Awareness Collection to the HollyRod Foundation with a guaranteed minimum of $10,000. To the left is a picture of the lovely bracelet that I purchased - It's called the spirit bracelet.  

New research shows the rate of children being diagnosed with autism continues to steadily rise and that autism is now considered almost twice as common as it was believed to be only ten years ago. A recent report stated that one in 88 children has autism or a related disorder, compared with one in 155 in 2002.  A shocking report from the US this week reports that in actuality, one in 50 children have an autism spectrum disorder.

About 10 years ago, an adorable little boy with brown hair and dark brown eyes was enrolled in my daycare class.  This little boy, Kyle, was an absolute joy - he made me smile every day - Kyle had autism. I enjoyed every minute working with Kyle.  Seeing him learn new things was the most rewarding part of working at that daycare.  A few years ago, I reconnected with his mom via facebook.  It was so great to hear how he was doing - seeing pictures, he has grown into a handsome young man, amazing his family every day....If I'm remembering correctly, he will be 13 at the end of this month. I think of him often and cherish the year that I was able to be his teacher. I learned a lot from my little buddy, Kyle. (update: I am shocked to hear my little friend is actually going to be 14 this month.  Oh my gosh, where has the time gone?)

There are still so many unanswered questions about autism...and sadly there is very little known about the causes. There are thousands of families across the autism spectrum that can use help. So, please show your support and bring awareness to autism and it's foundations.

Monday, April 1, 2013

Easter Weekend 2013

I LOVE long weekends at home with T and the kids.  Our family had an amazing Easter weekend. Here are some highlights:

*cheering on L's teacher at a 5k Good Friday race - L was inspired and decided she would like to do the kids 1km next year...I was also inspired and wonder if I can finally get myself in gear to do a 5k.
Congratulations, K.N on your first 5k race!

* dinner with family at local fish fish
* Annual visit to Bronte Provincial Park for their Maple Syrup Festival -- weather was perfect - company was great, and this year's maple syrup - fantastic.
*sunshine and warm temperatures

*no more training wheels - super proud Mommy moment
*Easter egg hunt(s)
*smiling faces
*dinner(s) with family
*sugar high giggles

Couldn't have been any better!

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Wordless Wednesday

Things Kids Say

This installment of "Things Kids Say" comes from this little cutie.

This morning, I accidentally scraped my lip and it started to bleed a little.
I was holding a kleenex on it when Ev came in.

Ev: "Oh no! You have a bleeding nose???"
Me: "No, honey, it's my lip"
Ev: "What? Your LIP has a bleeding NOSE????"

I could not stop laughing. This kid is just too much!

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Our newest TV obsession: Downton Abbey.
We started watching season 1 about 2 weeks ago and have only 2 episodes to go until we are caught up with season 3. We are beyond obsessed with this amazing Masterpiece Classic show.

Downton Abbey is a British period drama series set in fictional Yorkshire County estate of Downton Abbey. It depicts the lives of the aristocratic Crawley family and their servants in the post-Edwardian era — with the great events in history having an effect on their lives and on the British social hierarchy - these events include the sinking of the RMS Titanic, the outbreak of World War I and the Spanish influenza pandemic.

We are in love with most of the characters and are driven mad by others. The storylines are intriguing and each episode leaves us wanting to watch more - which is why we've blazed through the season so quickly - sometimes watching 2 or 3 episodes a night.

If you haven't seen this wonderful show, get moving! It's amazing and you will drawn in by the characters, the stories, the scenery, the costumes, Lady Violet's zingers and gestures - I don't know what T and I will do once we have watched these final 2 episodes.
Perhaps, we'll start the seasons over again - until season 4 begins.

Saturday, February 9, 2013

Even When It's Cold Outside, Our Memories Keep Us Warm

Yesterday, most of Ontario got "walloped" with approximately 30cm of snow. It started around 630am and didn't stop until after we had gone to bed. Our board cancelled school
- the kids had their very first snow day. We had a blast playing in the snow, something we haven't really seen too much of over the past few years.

They had named the storm "Winter Storm Nemo" - when I was looking for pictures for this post - I came across this Nemo pic and had a little giggle. So cute.

As many of you know, I have NO like for Winter. I dislike being cold. I don't enjoy the snow...especially driving in it. But one thing I do love about winter (ssshh...don't tell Tim that there is something I enjoy about winter LOL) playing with the kids...toboganning, etc.
Today, while Tim was at a basketball tournament, I took the kids over to the school where there is a pretty decent hill where the kids can toboggan. Despite the hill being pretty bumpy as the snow was not really packed down yet, they had a blast.

We are so lucky to have a great hill right around the corner. Backing onto Bronte Creek, the scenery is beautiful, the kids have a blast...that is until they can no longer climb up the hill.
So, as I type, we are all snuggled under blankets, watching a movie - my most favourite Winter activity...Ev is drifting off beside me. The perfect end to a winter afternoon.

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

Hello, 2013!

Happy New Year to any of my followers. Are you still around? Has the neglecting of my blog turned you away? LOL Man, I've been terrible at keeping up with this. Sorry loyal readers ;)

I am not usually one to make New Year's Resolutions, but over the last few days I have been doing some serious reflection on who I want to be. So I am going to try and stick to these 13 goals for 2013!

Here’s to 2013, in which I aim to:
1. become a better parent. I want to play more with my kids, be more active with them, be more patient, be more present.
2. become healthier. I want to lose the weight that I have gained back, and lose that last bit to finally get to my goal of a healthy weight. I will do this by eating healthy foods and moving more. This will include cooking new healthy recipes.
3. exercise more - I plan to attend 2-3 hot yoga classes per week and learn to run - I'd love to complete a 5km but will set small goals for myself - 1km would be a great start.
4. spend more quality time with my husband.
5. get my house organized and develop a daily/weekly/monthly cleaning schedule
6. get a small tattoo - I keep saying that I will reward myself with a tattoo when I get to my goal weight, so if I get there...I will get a tattoo!
7. read more. I will try and read 25+ books this year.
8. drink more water and less Diet Coke.
9. spend more quality time with my family and friends. I dislike talking on the phone, but will make more of an effort to call family members and friends.
10. spend less time wasted on social media sites like Facebook, Twitter and my beloved Pinterest.
11. blog more
12. be happy. Laugh & play more. Life is too short to let negativity and frustrations ruin my day.
13. Live my life by intention and not by habit. I am lazy, impatient, selfish, sensitive and emotional - I have big plans for my life, starting with 2013 - it's time for a change, and the only way to do it is by living by intention and not by habit.

Also - I guess another goal for my list....
My husband bought me a pretty purple notebook a few years ago for Christmas - it has sat in my pantry for years - each time I open the door, i would look at it and think "I should start using that book" I have decided that I am not going to use it as a journal, where normally I would vent and complain...I am going to use it as a gratitude journal and try and write in it every night before bed - stating what I am thankful for every day, something great that happened, etc.

So, on that note - I hope to be back soon to write more. #11 on my list of goals for this year. I vow not to leave you hanging for so long this time ;)