Friday, December 23, 2011

Merry Xmas and a new Blog

Well, it's finally here... the day we have all been waiting for... today is my birthday... oh... and tomorrow is Christmas.

I want to wish every one of my readers a Merry Christmas and a wonderful New Year in 2012.
(If you don't celebrate Christmas, please accept my well wishes for your own merry holidays).

I started this blog two years ago and I have been very lucky to share many of my thoughts and projects on here.  I have received many wonderful comments (and some that we won't talk about).  I have decided to retire this little blog of mine.  It's part of my 30's and since I am now in my 40's I have started a new Blog.

Her name is Somerset Lane

Somerset Lane

I did a quick post explaining my new blog and why I decided to start it.

If you are a current follower on Frugal Mom x3, I would love it if you followed along on Somerset Lane, either by e-mail (top right-hand side) or as Google Friend Connect.

My parents are currently visiting from Portugal, and since I know it's going to be a busy week, I've decided not to start posting on Somerset Lane until January 1st, 2012.

Until then have a wonderful week!


Wednesday, December 21, 2011

An Award


I was pleasantly surprised today when I started my daily blog reading and noticed I had received a blog award from Carla at My 1/2 Dozen Daily!  
Thanks Carla!

According to Carla,  Liebster is a german word & translates to “good friend” in English.  Awww thanks!

Here are the rules!! 

There are rules to receiving and accepting this award.
1. Thank the giver and link back to the blogger who gave it to you.
2. Reveal your top 5 picks and let them know by leaving a comment on their blog.
3. Cop and Paste the Award to your blog
4. Have faith that your followers will spread the word and love to other bloggers.

5. Have fun.  

Here are my top 5 picks (some of the blogs I read on a regular basis).
  1. Lori at Not the Mother of the Year.  Lori is an old friend, and some of her posts just crack me up.
  2. Erin at Sunny Side Up. Her family is like a younger version of my family.  And I love her hair too!
  3. Sarah at Memories on Clover Lane. I love the way she writes. She is such a positive lady.
  4. Ashli at Mini Manor (formerly Maillardville Manor). A fellow Canadian with a beautiful home, that she DYI's on a budget. I love her dog Max too!!
  5. Sarah at Thrifty Decor Chick.  Sarah's is the first blog I ever read and I anxiously wait for her next DYI project.

Go check them out and see why I love reading their blogs!


P.S. - I have started a new blog Somerset Lane for the new year, and for my life in my 40's.  Come follow along!

Monday, December 19, 2011

A birthday letter... to me.

(grab a coffee... this is a long one, with no pictures)

Well, I'm gonna officially say it... I'm turning 40 at the end of the week! Yeap the big 4-0!

I've been in denial that this day would come for about... ummm... 10 years or so! I always thought 40 was old.

But I can't deny it anymore, I'm turning 40!

The past couple of days have been rough for me. I've been teary, and grumpy and snappy (more than usual); but I just can't help myself. Is it the mourning process? Mourning my youth?

For the past year, I've watched my highschool friends turning 40 and wishing each other "happy birthdays" and I kept thinking "Thank goodness mine's not until end of December, so I don't have to deal with it".  Boy has the year flown by, and now it's here.

I've been trying to figure out why this birthday has hit me sooo hard (and not in a good way).  Everybody keeps saying "40 is the new 30".  ummm... no it isn't.  Thirty was a piece of cake for me!  Thirty meant I had arrived!  I was no longer "too young" or "too in-experienced".  But what does forty mean?

I've been thinking alot about each decade of my life and what they have meant to me (yeap, pretty intense stuff!)

My first 10 years,  were all about family.  The first 5 years, I have memories of my grandpa and grandma (mom's parents) and lunches and dinners at their house in Portugal.  Christmas and birthdays meant that my grandpa would go all out and make my day special (which all it really meant was having a birthday cake and maybe a new doll).  I remember playing with my two cousins and roaming our little town by ourselves.  There were no dangers (that I remember anyways).  I do remember being sick alot.   I mean really sick.  I had typhoid fever, followed by German measles when I was 6. Or was it the other way around? I'll have to ask my mom. From age 8-10 it was all about Canada, and this new country that was sooo cold, and I had no friends and couldn't understand what the heck people were saying to me. It took me a couple years to truly learn English.

From age 10-20, was all about school.  When I was about 16 or 17, my parents thought it would be a good idea if I quit school and got a job somewhere. After all they had no school past grade 8 and they were doing ok. I fought tooth and nail, and stayed in school.  I had after-school jobs from about the age of 15 on, just so  I could prove I could do both. At one point, during the summer after grade 11, I would wake up at 6 am to catch the "van to the farm" to pick grean beans all day, and get home at 6:30 p.m., take a shower, have dinner and then  3-4 nights week I worked at A&P grocery store from 7- 11 pm or 12 pm and then do it all over again the next day.  It was hard, but somehow I did it and made alot of money that summer.  I know I physically couldn't do it now. In my teen years, I think I was little sheltered.  While my friends were out at parties, going to dances and on dates, I was at home watching my siblings, or working.  I was expected to be home when the street lights came on; which was pretty early in the winter.  Going to my highschool graduation dinner and dance, was quite the ordeal. I had to get a family friend to explain to my mother that it was important that I go. I had to explain that "my date" was just a good friend and no he was not my boyfriend.  When the next day I received 2 dozen roses from my date, of course my mother freaked out. "What did you do to deserve flowers?" Well, ummm, I graduated highschool and asked him to be my date to my graduation party and this is his way of thanking me.  Simple really.

From 20-30 it was all about finding love and passion.  I found a program in college that I loved. I found a career that I loved. I found a man that I love. I met my two oldest children that I love. I was an adult, but of course I was still learning.  I was learning to be a good employee, to be a good girlfriend, a good wife, and a good mother.  I was learning that sometimes you win some and sometimes you loose some.  I was learning, and that was ok with me.

My 30's were about being home with my children. When my oldest Sydney was 3, and Haley was 1, I made the decision to stay home with them.  They were more important to me than any old job could possibly ever be.  I have now been home on and off for the past 10 years or so.  I did go back to work when I heard of an opportunity "that I just couldn't pass up". But eventually I came home. My heart and soul were at home.  During this time Anthony was born and it felt like our little family was complete. It is complete. As a way to keep my brain challenged, I started a virtual assistant business, and was doing quite well for awhile, but then it was interfering with  my family life.  My family comes first... always.

This now brings me to my forties?  What's expected of me now? My children are all in school full time (except for Anthony, but come September he will be). I am home alone most of the time, on most days.  Of course when the three of them are home, they still need me. And I'm ok with that.  But what about the rest? What am I supposed to do with myself? Do I start up my career again? Could I truly work in an office environment after not doing it for 10 years?  Could I just be a home maker, cleaning house, make meals, paying the bills?  What am I supposed to do for the next 20-40 years? I know others have hit this milestone before me, but is the difference that they have jobs/ careers that is propelling them forward and giving them hope that there is so much more for them to do?

My husband tells me that it's up to me to figure out what I need to do.  He's right, I know.  I think back to my 20's, and it was up to me to figure out what program I wanted to graduate from in College, what courses I wanted to take. It was up to me to figure out if that job opportunity was a good fit for me and my goals for my career.  But now, I feel like I am too old. Or am I? A friend who is older than I returned to school last year, and took courses in a field that were completely different than what she had been in for the first 20 years of her life.  That takes guts! Especially since she had a 5 year old daughter, who still needs her.

I had another "older" friend tell me, to make a list of all the things that I truly enjoy doing. The things that make me happy, my hobbies, and maybe that is a start of what my forties will look like.

Well, I'm not sure what my forties will bring, but I'm looking forward to the surprises... I think.


Friday, December 9, 2011

My Fun Christmas Mantel

Hey there!

This morning when I got up and looked outside it was snowing.  I'm not a fan of the snow, although I've come to tolerate it over the years. (I supposed I have no choice living in Canada... in Southern Ontario... in the snowbelt... where it snows... alot!.

So I thought some Christmas decorating was in order.

I'm not quite done my new family room built-ins ( one final coat of stinky paint), but I decided to tackle my mantle.

My original plan was to re-do my mantel.  Built-in out... chunky-it-up. But time is getting away from me... and I'm seriously tired of going to Rona and looking for wood-cutting- old-guy-BFF.  So I'm going with what I've got... for now.

This is what it currently looks like...

Yes, I believe the word is "blah". I kind of like the brick (kinda/sorta) but the mantel is small... really small.

But that will be a 2012 project. And If I can dream a little, I'll add in a gas fireplace insert too.
(remember I said dream, as I think know it's NOT in the budget)


Because I didn't want to spend any money I went into the Christmas totes and gathered some supplies and went to work.

I took an old wreath that I've had for probably 13 years or so and took it apart. 
Then I found some fake poinsetta flowers in white and red and took them apart and added it to my wreath form.

I also found some flimsy green garland from along time ago as well.  I ended up doubling the garland just to make is look thicker. 

So here is a progress shot...

Then the kids started arguing about how blue the sky was or something and stopped taking any more progress pictures.
Sorry... but I'm sure you can figure out how I put the rest together.

I added lights and other different fillers that I "found" in my totes and went to town.

Here are some pretty pictures...

And one final one... ( I promise)

I kept to my red and white colour scheme (which is through out my home), and it kept whimisical by added a snowman that used to sing and dance (but someone removed the music box from it)

What are you up today?

Have you decorated your mantel yet?  If you need some inspiration check out Rhoda's Mantel Party.

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

New Fireplace Built-ins

I have been working hard for the past couple of weeks.  Remember when I asked you what you thought I might be up to?

Well... I'm about half way there!  I have wanted built-ins for either side of my fireplace for a looooooong time, but we could never afford them, cause there were more important things to spend money on (new roof, new furnace, etc.). So I did what anyone would do, when they really want something.... I built my own.  Are you ready?

Introducing one side of the fireplace...

Here is a better picture...

Yeap I made it all by myself (with a little help from Home Depot and Rona.)

I started off getting my wood cut at Home Depot (the frame) and then I went back two days later to get more wood cut and they told me that their machine could not cut my size of wood (16" wide pine). 
Huh?  "But Pat just cut it two days ago!" I said. 
"Nope can't do it. Won't do it" Said John, the Home Depot wood cutting employee.
"Drats, now what" Thought I.

Off I went to Rona, and they had the same wood, same machine, and they cut the rest of the wood I need cut to finish this bookcase and

... the other side too.
(so, I don't know what Home Depot's issue was.  I even spoke to manager and he said NO".

So anyways, the bottom middle shelves on both sides still have to be re-cut because I cut them 1/16" too small, but I'm really happy how they are turning out.  I still have to prime and paint the one holding the t.v. but I wanted to give you a sneak peak.

What'cha think so far?

I'm linking up to...

The DIY Show Off

Friday, November 11, 2011

Remembrance Day 11-11-11

In Flanders fields the poppies blow

Between the crosses, row on row,

That mark our place; and in the sky

The larks, still bravely singing, fly

Scarce heard amid the guns below.

We are the Dead. Short days ago

We lived, felt dawn, saw sunset glow,

Loved and were loved, and now we lie

In Flanders fields.

Take up our quarrel with the foe:

To you from failing hands we throw

The torch; be yours to hold it high.

If ye break faith with us who die

We shall not sleep, though poppies grow

In Flanders fields.

Lieut.-Col. John McCrae

 November 11th. 11th hour. We remember our soldiers bravery.

I'm off to my kid's school's Remembrance Day ceremony.  It is always so beautiful.  They show a slideshow of the kids family members who served in the war.  As far as I know none of my relatives were in World War I, but my dad served in the Angola war against Portugal and I believe my Father-in-law served in WWII.

Will you be attending a Remembrance Day ceremony?
Or just have a moment of silence at the 11th Hour?

Thursday, November 10, 2011


My friend and fellow blogger Carla at My Half Dozen daily recently posted asking her readers to help her raise enough money to buy a goat, 2 hens, & a rooster for World Vision Canada!!! She was hoping to raise $150 which would help provide a supply of nutritious eggs, milk and cheese for food and income for a family.  Last time I checked, Carla (with the help of her fellow bloggers and readers) has raised over $500, and has increased her goal.  I am sharing this with you, cause I'm hoping you can join us in raising more money.  The minimum donation she is asking for is $1.00 through Paypal.  Please email  Carla at moraliaweblog (at) yahoo (dot) ca for her Paypal addy!!

She is keeping a running total on her side bar of how much money she has raised and what she is hoping to buy with the money. 
Bloggers and readers... let's unite and Bless another family less fortunate.

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

My Baby Girl is 11!

 Today is my baby girl's 11th birthday!

Today I picked her up from school for lunch.

I asked where she wanted to go... Eastside Mario's, Boston Pizza or Tim Horton's.

She picked Tim Horton's because she wanted to try the Lasagna Casserole Soup that she has heard about.

She ended up getting a Turkey BLT sandwich and Honey Cruller Donut (her grandpa's favourite).

We then picked up some cupcakes for her 27 classmates. Of course we got the vanilla cupcakes (and a couple chocolates ones for the other kids). She was excited to share the sugar with her friends.

For dinner I asked what meal she wanted me to make. She wanted me to make her canja (a Portuguese Chicken soup) .

This coming weekend she has decided to invite two of her friends to see Puss 'n Boots and then dinner afterwards.

Happy Birthday Haley, I hope you had a good one.

Saturday, November 5, 2011

It's official.... We Have a Teenager in the House!

Yesterday, was Sydney's birthday! She is officially a teenager!

We celebrated her 13th birthday, by going to see The London Knights at the JLC.  Hubby's work was hosting the company with box seats.  Corey Perry's #94 was retired from London Knights last night. It was cool to be there!

Hubby also arranged a few surprises for Sydney.

She got her name on the big billboard for the 9,000 fans to see.
 (after all, they were all there for her... not the hockey game or to see Corey Perry.  lol)

She got a cupcake while we all sang Happy Birthday to her.  She was a little shy.

Then she quickly ripped the ribbon off and ate the cupcake.

I think she a fun evening.

Today she is going to go see Puss'n Boots with a friend and then dinner afterwards.

Time Flies.  Feels like only yesterday, that we found out we were expecting our first baby!

Welcome to your teen years baby girl.

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Can you guess What I'm up to?

I'm busy today... really busy!

Can you guess what I'm up to?

I'll give you two virtual cookies to whom ever guesses what I'm up to. :)

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

My Scary Ghouls


I hope you all had a safe Halloween night!  We had a total of six kids come to our door trick or treating.  Two of them were the neighbors kids that went trick or treating with Anthony and the other 4 were Haley's friends that came calling on her.  So now we have tons of candy that I will need to freeze and hide (from me). Last year we had 15 kids and this year we had 6, the numbers are dwindling.  Granted it was raining last night, and we don't have a sidewalk on our side of the street, but hubby did say their lots of kids out.

Today I thought I would share some pics from last night. Beware they are quite scary!  lol

Watch out!  He's going to....

...bite you!! The red marks are supposed to be blood. ;-)
Haley is a fashion Barbie (of course she is!)

Her imitation of Marilyn Monroe. (she didn't even know who she was)

No autographs please!
Sydney is a Red M & M.

with matching red lipstick!
Sydney will be 13 in a couple of days, and she declared this morning, that this will be the last year she goes out trick or treating. She feels she is "too old" to go out. 

Did your kids go out? We're your trick or treating numbers down as well and now you are "stuck" with a bunch of candy? And most importantly, what age do you think is to old to trick or treat?

Monday, October 31, 2011

A new Camera

Well Hi there!

I think I might have mentioned here awhile ago that my point and shoot camera was on the fritz. Well it ended up dying last Spring. At first I thought it was the battery, so I fiddled with the back-up battery and kept switching them up.  I think it was in April and I was in mid-picture taking at Canada's Wonderland and the shutter wouldn't close. I came home switched the batteries again... and nothing... nada... zilch... zippo.  I brought it to a local camera store and they said I couldn't order another battery, and the cost to have the camera looked at was about 1/2 the cost of buying a new one.  hmmm... no thanks. 
So the entire summer I did not get a decent picture of my kids.  We had Anthony's birthday... no camera.  We went camping... no camera.  Pool... no camera.  First days of school... no camera.  I can go on, but I think you get the idea. Oh yeah, and no blogging, cause who wants to blog without pretty pictures to upload.
Well, with Halloween and the girl's birthday's coming up, I had had enough.  The number one thing on my Christmas and Birthday list was a new camera. A new expensive DSLR camera.  That's all I want.  And yes, I have been quite vocal about telling hubby.  So this weekend I sweet talked hubby and off we went to talk to the fine knowledgeable folks at  Henry's and after about 2 hours and a quick lunch we walked out with my new camera!!!

We went with this one from Sony ...  SONY ALPHA A55 DSLR W/18-55 LENS

image of Sony Alpha DSLR-A100

We also, bought an extra lense... cause I knew if I didn't do it now, I never would.

I had certain criteria that had to be met for my ideal camera.
Are you ready?  This is what I told Caralyn at Henry's..
"It has to take pictures fast... and I have to be able to be in the back of the school gymnasium and take pictures of my kids singing/performing/standing on the school stage."
Pretty technical stuff huh?
So after two hours and looking and testing a bunch of cameras, this is the one that met my criteria.
I took the kids to the park yesterday and took a bunch (about 300) pictures, I'll share those later on these week.  But here's one that I just love (and the one up top too).

Thanks to my hubby for my early birthday/Christmas/Valentines/Anniversary/Easter/ Groundhog and-every-other-holiday gift!

I am very happy!

So it's gonna be quite the learning curve, considering this past summer I have been taking pictures with my cell phone. I might take a photography class or two as well. Have you seen any on-line that you would recommend?

Friday, September 30, 2011

September Re-cap

Hello! Hello!

Can you believe today is the last day of September and the kids have been back at school for almost a month?? 

So here's what I have been up to this month...

- My garden was overflowing with zucchini so I baked up quite a few Chocolate Zucchini Muffins, and grilled a bunch too for salads.

- S. started grade 8 this year, H. started grade 6 and little A is in Senior Kindergarten.  On the first week of school got a note from the teacher that little A was "too hyper" in gym class and had to be put in time-out. hmmm...  I thought gym class was for burning energy so they can focus during other lessons. 

- I went and visited my friend who was in a terrible accident that left her paralyzed.  While I was there, the nurses decided it was time that she went outside and get some fresh air (the first time since her accident).  It was great to see her smile and enjoy the wind and sun in her face again.

- I got back into Menu Planning.  ( I will need to start posting these on here on a more regular basis too :) )

- I decided to start up my Virtual Assistant business again.  AND I already have appointments scheduled for potential clients. 

How was you September?  Did you get everything done that you set out to do?

Friday, September 16, 2011

I'm appreciating the little things today

You know when you are mindlessly going through your life just waiting for the day to end and you can put the kids to bed and hunker down to watch t.v.? When you have been running around all day getting things done, and yet you feel like you have done nothing?  You know those days, when your hubby and your kids make you so mad you just want to scream? You know those days when nothing seems to go right?

Well, today I am appreciating those days.  I am lucky and fortunate to be able to run around and do things.  I am lucky to be here with my kids everyday, and jump in my car to pick them from school, or drop them off at an event or friends house. Or drop their lunch at school cause they forgot it... again.

Let me tell you why...

Those who know me in real life, will have heard me speak of my friend Tracy.  Tracy and I met in 1995 when we were both in our first "real" job after college and university.  She was the first person that introduce herself that fateful day in May of 1995. She sat at the next cubicle beside me.  We started each morning with a chit - chat about the previous evening or the weekend.  That summer we spent a lot of time hanging out together. I remember that she came out drinking with my roommate and I, and then slept over that night, with a couple of cats sleeping by her pillow.  The next morning I noticed eyes red and swollen, and her face blotchy and red, and she told us she was allergic to cats.  Oooops! We laughed about it, cause she couldn't have driven home anyways. That summer she nominated me for Social Committee member,  and then appointed herself as "campaign manager".  Little did I know what that meant.  She then arranged the Communications/Marketing Dept guys to scan a picture of me and embed the song "Dancing Queen" into an e-mail, that was then sent to every employee in the company (I am not sure if the President got it too or not).  I didn't make it on to the committee but I did end up meeting my future husband.

Tracy and I met our husbands at around the same time.  We had our children at around the same time too.  She has a 13 year old, 11 year old and 6 year old.  Heck, we even got our first dogs at around the same time.  Our Muskoka passed away in October of 2009 and Sonoma (her girlie) passed away the summer of 2010.

Tracy and I have worked together many times since that first job in 1995.  She and her former husband started their own financial company and about 1 year later hired me as Business Development Coordinator.  Those were some really fun times.  We got to travel to Whistler together, and dine at some fancy schmancy restaurants.  Tracy bought me my first Coach purse, my first overnight Coach bag, my first Salvatore Ferragamo wallet and a Tiffany bean bangle.  (I should mention that those are my only Coach, Ferragamo, and Tiffany items I own).

In the last couple of years, I became Tracy's virtual assistant.  She says I was the only person she trusted to deal with certain aspects of her life.  I valued that trust that she placed in me. Every time tax season rolled around, I would get a frantic call from Tracy asking me to make my way to Toronto (two hours away for me) to help her with her taxes.  I always did.  The last time I saw Tracy was last May.

Let me tell you why I'm appreciating my life today.

On Sunday, September 4th, while training for a bike race in Collingwood, Ontario, Tracy crashed her bicycle at very high speed and sustained a traumatic  neck and spinal injury.  She broke her neck between C3 and C4 vertebrae severing her spinal cord.  She is paralyzed from the neck down.  Her injuries are comparable to those that Christopher Reeves sustained.  As of today, the doctors are getting her to breath on her own.

She is in a fight for her life. And she has one heck of climb ahead of her.  She is one of the strongest women I know, and I believe that she will keep on fighting.

Tracy is a single mom of three young boys with no financial support from her ex husband.

If you would like to help her financially or to read more about her fight you can go here. (you might need to set-up an e-mail and password).

I am appreciating every step I take today, and cuddle I give my kids.

Won't you join me in sending her healing light, strength and a little prayer that she has the strength to make her way back home to her boys.  And to give her strength to NEVER give up no matter how hard the next few months, years will be.

Thanks for reading .

Thursday, September 1, 2011

My little garden (and what I learned)


Yesterday, I mentioned that this summer I started a small (teeny tiny actually) veggie garden.

Well, here it is, in all of its zucchinified glory.  Who knew those zucchini's would get sooo big.

In there somewhere I also have some lettuce, green beans, tomatoes, and raspberries.

Here are the pictures to prove it.

Will these ever go red?

I've already picked a bunch of zucchinis.

And I guess I forgot to take pics of the beans and lettuce.  (bad blogher)

I also have this little raspberry bush growing in the back.  I bought it on clearance in July, so I'm only getting berries now, and I'm hoping they go red soon (before the snow comes).

There are alot of "green" berries on it.
And some cherry tomatoes in a pot.  These have been going strong for months.

In my quest to rid my home of harmful chemicals from my home and our food, I have not added any pesticides or anything to my little veggie garden.

In the Spring I emptied my composter into the ground and mixed it in there really good.  Lots of nutrients. And most importantly clean food.

You can see the corner of the composter in the top picture.

A few things I learned this summer while attempting to grow my veggies:


Duh! I know, it's pretty self explanatory, but I was not consistent in my watering.  My mom told me to water morning and night. She knows what she is talking about, since in the summer they don't grocery shop for veggies or fruit, they eat from their garden. I should have listened.


In my area that would be around May 24th weekend (or Victoria Day holiday).  I think I planted mine the last weekend of June or first of week of July. No wonder everything is taking forever to mature.  In my defense we had alot going on at the time.


I love grean beans and so does hubby.  The kids don't. I should have used the area that the grean beans were planted in to plant something else that we would have ALL eaten... like carrotts or peppers.

Although I'm still waiting for some things to go red, I'm pleased with my little veggie garden this year.  Next year, I think I will only plant one Zucchini plant in the back corner of the garden, so it doesn't take over.

Did you plant a veggie garden this year? How did you do?
Do you compost? 
Any advice for a novice like me?


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Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Yes.... I'm still here.

Helloooooo.... (echo... echo)

Is anyone out there??


Yeah, I know I'm a bad blogger.  I decided to take alot some time off from blogging and several other activities in my life and I forgot to tell people.  (blush)

So what have I been up to since May? hmmm... a couple of things.
  1. On May 31st my father in law passed away after a 4 year battle with lung and brain cancer. The last few months leading up to his passing were very difficult for our family especially the last week or two.  he passed on with my hubby and his mother by his bedside.  I still have a hard time believing he is gone.
  2. I started my first garden.  I planted tomatoes, green beans, zucchini, and lettuce.  We've eaten beans, the lettuce and zucchini, but I'm still waiting for the tomatoes to go red. My guess is I didn't water them enough, and oh yeah I didn't put them into the ground until end of June. The zucchinis however are taking over.  So if you live near me don't be surprised to find zucchinis on your door step.
  3. My mom decided to surprise my sister and I and came to visit us in Canada (she lives in Portugal).  And... no she didn't call the night before she was to board the airplane to tell us.  And... no she didn't call from the airport for one of us to pick her up from the airport.  Nope, she didn't do any of that.  My sister and I were invited for lunch at my aunties house and there was my mom. In Canada.  For 3 weeks! Surprise!!  Apparently my dad had surprised her with flight tickets for her 60th birthday and then she decided to surprise us.  It was a huge surprise!
  4. We celebrated Little A's 5th birthday with a pool party.  He had his 10 closest buddies from his Junior Kindergarten class over for a swim and cake and a pinhata. Up until now all of his parties have been with family and friends, this was his first party with HIS own friends.
  5. After a 7 year hiatus.... WE WENT CAMPING!! (And yes I know those are in capital letters.)  Before Anthony was born we had been camping a few times at Killbear Provincial Park, but he was born I always had an excuse.  But I dusted off the old tent and sleeping bags and off we went.  And we had a great time.  The first night there was quite the thunderstorm and lighting show, which kept me awake all night, but other than that, we had a great time.
  6. This summer 5 friends and I left our families to fend for themselves for four days and went to Montreal for a 40th Birthday Celebration.  All 5 of us will be 40 this year. (although mine is not until December) We had a great time riding Bixi bikes, eating, shopping and talking.  It's amazing that we had sooo much to talk about. We had a fantastic time and I hope that it starts an annual tradition, 'cause I'm planning on celebrating my 30th... err... 40th again next year.
  7. I've 99% removed refined sugar from my diet.  Back in January I made a goal to eliminate refined sugars from my diet and a bunch of others goals that I forgot about when life got too busy and I stopped blogging.  Although I was still watching what I was eating and drinking my shakes, there were times that my sugar urges were sooo strong that I literally  inhaled any chocolate covered anything that was in my pantry.  These 'sugar parties' gave me quite the high, which was then followed by the sugar lows and migraine headaches.  My weight stalled for months.  August 10th, I went cold turkey.  Which resulted in a migraine that lasted for 3 days (the carb flu). Now... I feel great.  I've lost weight again.  I sleep better.  My acne has cleared up and the headaches are gone. I am really trying to make this my new way of eating.
  8. Do you remember last year when Haley got her hearing aids? And then lost them? And then I ordered new ones? And then she found the first ones? I can't remember if I told you about that.  Well after many trips to hospital for tests, and re-tests, catscan, meetings with audiologists and hearing resource teachers and doctors, principals, and... I forget who else I should include... anyways... the doctor just told us... are you ready for this... SHE DOESN'T NEED THEM!!!  huh?? What?? yeap she doesn't need them.  She's been tested between 15-20 times by 4 different audiologists in the past year and a half, all showing a moderate to extreme hearing loss in both ears.  And now after a final test, which is considered to be definitive... she doesn't need them.  This was the best school year that she has had ever while wearing the aids with the FM system provided by the school.  Honestly I don't get it. She's going back to see the doctor in a few weeks, cause as far as I'm concerned there are a few things that just don't add up.  I'll keep you posted.  On the brighter side I don't have to remind her everyday to wear the hearing aids or to make sure that she has cleaned them and put them away for the night.
  9. My pool this summer has not been crystal clear blue.  All summer long I have battled with THE POOL!  I've become quite proficient at Googling different pool DYI and watching You Tube videos on what to do.  I learned how to take apart the motor and reseal it and put it back.  I learned how to remove and replace a faulty pressure gage.  I took out the salt water generator cell and cleaned it and put it back.  I did everything to make the water clear and nothing... nada.  Frustrating, I tell ya!! And now that the summer is over... looks like we need to replace the filter, the salt water generator and the pool liner next spring. Chaching!! Can you hear the dollars draining from pool.  uugghh.
  10. And finally... the kids (and I) are ready to go back to school.  Their bags are packed.  Their back to school clothes are hung and waiting and my ginormous to-do list is waiting for me.
Sorry about the long post, but I'm trying to make up for 4 months of not blogging.

I'm not even sure if there is anyone still out there anymore.

If you are leave me a note and say "hi" and that you forgive me for being a bad blogger. :)

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Happy Birthday to my Big Boy!!

(I interrupt my blogging hiatus to brag about my baby.)


I can hardly believe that it's been five years since we welcomed our little guy into our family.

He was born at 7:02 a.m (about 35 minutes after I got to the hospital).
I've refered to him as Little A on this blog, but his actual name is Anthony Robert.
He was named after both of his grandfathers. Anthony is for Antonio (my father) and
Robert is for... well Robert (my hubby's father).

He just finished Junior Kindergarten at our neighbourhood "English School" and will be starting Senior Kindergarten in September at our nearby French Immersion school along with his big sister Sydney.

 This past year he learned to print his full name and is able to read and recognize some words in his books.
His favourite toys are still all the Superheros and he loves anything that goes fast... very fast.

He is now jumping off the diving board and swimming without floaties or help from anyone.
(he makes my heart skip a beat every time I see him jumping in the pool)

He's waited a long time to turn five and this morning he woke me with whispering in my ear,
 "I'm five today, can I have some cake and icecream for breakfast."
ummm.... no.... maybe later.

Happy Birthday BIG BOY!!!

Thursday, May 19, 2011

One more day for FREE Shaklee Membership

Just wanted to give you a quick reminder that the

with purchase of at least $30 member's ends tomorrow Friday, May 20th. 


So why is it a big deal to get the FREE Membership?

A Shaklee membership gives you…

  • 15% discount (off retail prices) on product purchases
  • Special promotions, offers and discounts
  • Unconditional money-back guarantee
Here are some of my favourite Products that I always recommend if you are just starting off.

Scour Off™ Heavy-Duty Paste

Great for the toughest cleaning challenges. Natural ingredients remove the toughest dried-on splatters and spills, burned-on grease, baked-on food, and sticky messes without hazardous chemicals or toxic fumes.

Scour Off is made from natural mineral abrasives and biodegradable cleaning agents; it does not contain chlorine, bleach, or dye.

Scour Off gently removes stains other cleansers can't and is great for cleaning tubs, ovens, sinks, and tiles.

It will even remove rust, and is great for cleaning these surfaces: copper, grout, cement, ceramic, and imitation marble.

Basic H2® Organic Super Cleaning Concentrate

This little 473 mL bottle creates an unbelievable 181 litres of super-safe, really powerful all-purpose cleaner.

For all-purpose cleaning:
  • Add 1.25 mL (1/4 tsp.) to 473 mL (16 oz.) of water.
For windows, glass, and mirrors:

  • Add 1 to 2 drops to 473 mL (16 oz.) of water.
For degreasing:

  • Add 7.5 mL (1.5 tsp.) to 473 mL (16 oz.) of water. For bigger jobs, add 60 mL (2 oz.) to 3.8 L (1 U.S. gallon) of water
Nature Bright® Laundry Booster and Stain Remover

A bleach alternative for stains on multiple surfaces.  I add a little scoop to my wash. For tough stains (I add a little water and rub it in to the stain).
Dish Wash Automatic Concentrate
 (phosphate-free formula for dishwasher use)
I'm still amazed how little I have to use to get a really good clean.  I don't have to rinse my dishes anymore.

If you have been wanting to take try Shaklee Cleaning Get Clean products, this is a great time to get a Free Membership too.

You can order any of these products through my Online Shaklee Shop.

Remember before you check out, sign up as member (you will not be charged).

New Coupon (Facebook Canada): Wonder+ Simply Free


 Here's a new coupon I just came accross.  I haven't seen this kind of offer before...

How it works:

For every person who “Likes” WONDER+ Facebook page, the value of the coupon for NEW WONDER+ SimplyFree Hotdog and Hamburger buns goes up.

By reserving your coupon today, you will receive the highest value the coupon will reach
  • 1-2,000 “Likes”, you will receive a 50¢ coupon;
  • 2,001 – 4,000 “Likes” you will receive a 75¢ coupon; 
  • 4,001 – 6,000 “Likes” you will receive a 1$ coupon; 
  • 6,001 – 8,000 “Likes” you will receive a 1.25$ coupon 
  • 8,001-10,000 “Likes” you will receive a Buy One, Get One Free coupon).
At the end of the Progressive coupon period (June 15, 2011), they will tabulate the number of “Likes” and send you a physical coupon through Canada Post.

Reserve your coupon now by “Like”ing Wonder+ Simply on Facebook page and signing up for your coupon.

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

New Coupons on (Canada)

There are a bunch of new coupons on

Save $5.00 - Maple Leaf Prime
 Save $5.00Maple Leaf® Prime™

On any Maple Leaf Prime Stuffed Chicken Breasts, Chicken Tenderloins or Scaloppini Folds

Save $0.50 - Betty Crocker*

Save .50 cents when you purchase any Betty Crocker Brownies

Save $1.00 - Schneiders

Save $1.00Schneiders

Off any Juicy Jumbos, Red Hots OR Grill 'ems products
Remember  Websaver only allows you to order a minimum of three coupons at a time, so split up your orders to be able to get these coupons.
Don't forget they still have the
new Free Chocolate Cheerios
 or new Fibre One Brown Sugar Shredded Wheat.
These are valid one day only - June 21st, 2011.
FREE - Cheerios*


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