Saturday, 31 December 2011

2011 Review | Ruff Ruminations

Here is a photo review of our 2011, I included Grady's 2010 Christmas pic for comparison to this year :D Happy New Year and I hope 2012 is fabulous for you an yours :D
Grady's Christmas pic of 2010 did not include Santa for 2 reasons. 1-he was not a fan of Santa and would not sit with him, 2-our "family" pic with Santa from the SNC kids party was terrible.
January:
We pushed fully into 2011 with a big mess by trying out finger painting for the first time! Lots of fun!
February:
Saw us start on our way to choosing and purchasing a tent trailer for the 2011 camping season. Which meant Brian got the lovely learning experience of installing a hitch and components :D
March:
Winter 2011 wasn't going anywhere fast! But we still got out in the cold and snow to enjoy the playground and walk the dogs. It was great to see Grady go from needing help to climb in the early part of the year to doing it all by himself by summer time!
April:
Then April came and spring seemed to be peeking out from Winter's curtain. We got a new bike for Grady but he still prefers to ride in the wagon. Maybe 2012 will see him start to race around.

May:
We spent lots of cousin time in 2011 with Isabel. It is nice the days these guys are good friends and of course interesting the days they aren't!
June:
Well I said goodbye to 30 in June, I still have a hard time believing that I am actually in my 30's! Wow! We also did lots of fun stuff like visit the Edmonton Telus World of Science.

July:
July came an summer was fabulous! Most people said we didn't get a nice summer but I disagree. Maybe they were stuck inside at work all those lovely days we spent in the backyard pool and at splash parks :D

August:
Time for a birthday party. Even though it is late in the summer we still had great weather for a pool party!
September:
Saw our last camping trip and I was a good one! Out to Drumheller for the museum and lots of playground play!
October:
Snuck up on us a bit but we were still ready for Halloween and lots of dressing up :D

November:
Brought us the famous Haircut! Plus I started a business (I still need to get my website up) and Brian got a new position at work, lots of change!
And then December:
came in with a bang and we were BUSY! but it was fab.

We hope for so much in 2012 but aren't making any official resolutions yet :D

Wednesday, 28 December 2011

Imagination and Destruction | Ruff Ruminations

Two things that kids know how to do really well and totally naturally? Imagination and Destruction! They can think of the most amazing things and destroy any semblance of order in a nanosecond! Here is what you get when you leave 4 kids ages 3,4,4.5 and 6.5 alone for as little as 5min but possibly as long as 30. Us house partying adults are not sure of the exact amount of under-supervised time :D

Formerly my TV room.

Not so bad you say? Well this area used to house all of Grady's toys until...

The children decided to create "no adults allowed" clubhouse in my laundry room! It is still a pile of toys in my basement after I "encouraged" them to return the toys to their homes as fast as they could, which of course resulted into throwing. But I was just glad that they weren't in my laundry room anymore :D

What this you ask? Well this is 3 little boys figuring out that the best use for a remote control beer cooler is as a ride on remote control car! Awesome? I think so!

video

Tuesday, 27 December 2011

Preschool Christmas Party | Ruff Ruminiations

On the last day of school before Christmas break like all schools everywhere Grady's had a Christmas Party. Daddy was off work so he got to come too, which Grady was very excited about! It was lots of fun to get to see him play with all his friends and dance around while the teacher and parents sung sing some songs. There was lots to do and Santa came too!
Playing with one of his best buds

Throwing "snowballs" with Daddy.

Testing out the balance beam

Very involved in making his craft. This is the longest I have seen him sit for something crafty aside from finger paints.

Guess you'll have to turn your head to look at this one...not sure why it is sideways. In any case here is Daddy and Grady painting an ornament for the tree.

Decorating a cookie with Ms Holly

Serious sprinkle placement!

Driving the bus with some awesome passengers

Santa!

**please feel free to ask me to remove a photo that includes your child if you do not want it on the blog, I have attempted to not use any names**

Saturday, 24 December 2011

Merry Christmas

We are on our way to visit family and I realized my last post was a bit negative Nelly for Christmas. So thank you to everyone who came to the party last night. It was lovely to see everyone and fun to play white elephant :) I think we'll make that a party tradition and see what gifts show up next year again :)

No pics as I am writing this from my phone but will do a full post later.

Here's wishing you and yours all the magic Christmas can bring.

Love,
Leslie

Friday, 23 December 2011

Elf on A Shelf Antics (before we sign off for Christmas) | Ruff Ruminations

Since Christmas is almost here and I am sure I won’t behaving any time to write blog posts unless I do get that laptop as a prezzie ;DI thought I would sign off with a little more Elf on the Shelf and show a fewof the things Nemo has gotten up to.

Tucked inside the glass tube
Upside down on the railing
On top of the cupboards
Delivering a cad that arrived in the mail for Grady.

Hanging from Cranky the Crane

Hiding in the Christmas tree

I know this isn't Elf Nemo but this is Grady giving some of his money from his Advent Calendar.

Peeking out of the corner of the bed

But can I just say what is with all the elf hate? I mean we all know how hard it is to be a mom or a dad or a family in general so if someone has the time and wants to take the time to hide a creepy cute elf around the house in different places why do you care? I know there are people out there who like to go crazy over the top and I say all the power to them if they want to do it great. But I don’t think I should feel labelled as bad or an over-achiever because I occasionally have time to do something slightly more creative with Nemo.
Seriously what is with this movement lately where it is awesome to be a so-called “bad” mom and pretend like you are lazy or indifferent about your children and that you are on some sort of ultimate cool high horse that allows you to look down your nose at moms who like to bake cookies from scratch or sew gifts for their child’s teachers or hide an Elf somewhere besides the self?
Really let’s all stop the judging and try to get supporting each other. Breast feed or don’t breast feed; cloth or disposable; work or stay home...I don’t care what you do so stop taking an unhealthy interest in my choices. Instead remember you love your children as much as I do and I’m not trying to prove I love them more by doing those things. I just like doing them. So shut up, have a Merry Christmas and I hope your kids sleep in. Because really I would rather have you hold my hand through this whole parenting thing than slam the door in my face because you think what I do somehow affects your parenting decisions – end rant :D
**Note** I realize I was pretty angry when I wrote that and I aplogize but I still feel the same. Maybe because I'm mad since someone stole my shopping bag full of cosmetics today. I'm sure I'll be less mad tomorrow when this posts but I still think moms should support each other more and judge each other less.

Thursday, 22 December 2011

Lemon Angel Wings | Ruff Ruminations

Lemon Angel Wings:
These are by far the most beautiful and delicate cookies I have ever made. They are a bit time consuming but totally worth it as far as I am concerned. Recipe requested by Jen since she is looking for egg free recipes she can enjoy :D


Lemon Angel Wings:
1 cup cold butter (I have used margarine with success before)
1 1/2 cups flour (any of the various types have worked for me with success)
1/2 cup sour cream (I have used both full and low fat with success)
1 teaspoon lemon zest (I use WAY more cuz I like a stronger lemon taste)
10 tablespoons sugar, divided (I just keep the sugar bag out and use it as needed)

1) Cut butter into flour until crumbly (I've let it crumble up in the Kitchenaid mixer with success)
2) Stir in sour cream until well blended
3) Place dough onto a sheet of wax paper and form into a square approx 4.5 inches
4) Wrap in plastic wrap and refridgerate at least 2 hours

This recipe has a lot of waiting time!

5) Cut dough into 4 equal squares
6) Place on square on a piece of wax paper sprinkle with some sugar, cover with another piece of wax paper
7) Roll out dough to a 12x5 in rectangle stopping often to sprinkle with more sugar and flip etc.
8) Roll up both edges to the center to create a double jelly roll sort of shape. Wrap in plastic and return to fridge
9) Repeat steps with remaining square

Wait again! For at least 1 hr.

10) Unwrap dough and cut into 1/2 inch slices
11) Dip each side in sugar and place on foil lined baking sheet
12) Bake at 375 for 14 min (adjust baking time if you stove cooks fast or slow) until golden brown. Flip each cookie and cook another 5 min or so.

Enjoy! Brian thinks they are only good warm and I think they are good all the time. They are my favorite but most intensive cookies to make at Christmas. I am scroogie with how much I share them :D


Wednesday, 21 December 2011

A Pecker on our Porch | Ruff Ruminations

My brother Bryan discovered this pecker (Woodpecker that is :D) in our Mayday Tree beside our deck on Sunday. Pretty cool, I have never seen a woodpecker up so close! Hopefully it doesn't mean that our tree is dying? Anyways he stuck around until I had to start BBQing. Anyone know what kind of pecker he is?
The best shot I got! I clicked just as he popped his head around the tree.





video
Here he is tapping away. If you listen close you can hear it. Sorry for the background noise but that's life with a preschooler!

Tuesday, 20 December 2011

Once Upon Christmas at Heritage Park | Ruff Ruminations

Sorry the pics are all out of order, Blogger was acting up on me. but in any case we went to Heritage Park's Once Upon a Christmas for the last day that it was running. It was a good day out and the weather was beautiful and the park was PACKED! But it was lots of fun and we got there pretty early so we didn't have to wait too long (30 min or so for the longest wait) considering how long the lines were getting when we headed home around 2pm.

Isabel entertains herself while Grady and I run late :D

The Thornton Family

No Grady has never been photographed before, nu-uh, not him, not a poser at all!

Goofing around

A quick lunch, they were pretty much out of everything. So lukewarm hot dogs a a few bags of chips it had to be.

Reindeer!

Uncle Bryan pulls the sled around while we wait to meet the reindeer.

Try and get them to look...Easier to get them both not looking!

Isabel was not happy about the sled at first. But her grumpy mood soon vanished once she saw how fun Heritage Park was going to be :D




The park is beautiful in the winter

 A cutie playing in the hay :D

Another visit with Santa for Mr. Grady.

Two cuties enjoying the sleigh rides! Glad we brought the sled and not the wagon!

Finally made on the hay ride. It was about a 30min wait.

Isabel and Daddy on the hay ride

How do you get a photo of two preschoolers? You don't! I said I am tempted to applique a face to the back of his hood since I get a shot of that more often!

Grady was not interested in petting a reindeer but I was certainly gunna try!

petting Comet

waiting for the hay ride

 Isabel and Daddy getting out of the maze.