Growing Out On A Limb

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Eleanor turns 4!


Today, you – my little girl – turned four.  Time seems to move so quickly but is it possible that it moves even more quickly for you, my youngest child?  I try to so hard to do what everyone tells you to – to enjoy it, to soak it in while they are little.  And I swear I do, but then, on days like today, I think back on your sweet little baby face and have a hard time believing the time has gone by so quickly.


You have a sweet, girly, spunky personality.  You hate getting your hair done but you love haircuts and trying mommy’s makeup.  You love being on a pedestal on days like your birthday, but you’re not always comfortable with the attention. You love shopping dates with mommy (even if it is just to sobeys).

You love your brothers but you have no problem letting them know when they have ticked you off.  I think you are going to be a sensitive but strong woman.


Some things about you as you turn four:

  • You love dresses.  Every day.  And slippery socks.  So you can twirl in your dresses.
  • You are girly in so many ways, but it often happens that you have a doll in one hand and a toy gun in the other, tucking in a doll one minute and wrestling with your brothers the next.
  • You have incredible attention to detail when you are coloring.
  • You are working on sharing – we don’t often have friends your age to visit and when we do, it is difficult for you to understand that they aren’t taking the toys away with them.
  • You love the pool – you jump from the ladder (not the side yet) and swim around with your life jacket on like a fish!
  • Your brothers love you – they play hide and seek with you, family, Emery often plays dolls and make believe with you.

We have had a birthday week of fun (because everyone should have a birthday week!).  On Saturday you and I went on a little date to the mall – we wandered, we picked up a few things, we rode the escalators, and then we had lunch at the food court where there are LOTS of things to look at!


On Sunday we had a pool party with your friends – it was the first time they were all together outside of Lisa’s house and it was so cool (the moms had fun too)!  We swam, we cupcake’d, we opened presents, we played … it was a great time!

20814870_10156153832311393_1285681533_nToday, on your actual birthday, you had another good day with your friends (your Lisa is so awesome and caring!) and then another pool party with more friends.  How lucky are you – two pool parties for your birthday?!  20170815_180315

Then it was time for chocolate cake with sprinkles!  20170815_190746And more presents – a tea set, a doctor’s set, and a sweet little stuffie named kiki!  20170815_191558


After a birthday week like that, I hope you never question whether or not you are loved!




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Oliver’s 8th Birthday


My dearest Oliver,

It is so easy for me to think back eight years and remember meeting you for the first time – you, who first made me a mother – that it is sometimes hard for me to reconcile the tall, maturing boy in front of me with that tiny baby they laid on my chest.

You are an amazingly strong kid – so athletic, fast, and competitive.  When you asked to play hockey last year we told you to first learn how to skate – you were so driven and worked hard.  Now you are not only playing hockey, you are scoring goals and holding your own against kids who have played before.

I see how proud you are when you learn a new skill, when you make a great play, to be part of a team.  This sport is great for your self-esteem.  It is discipline, it is taking direction from a coach, it is fist-bumping your team mates when you get a goal, it is rushing the goalie at the end of every game (win or lose) to tell him “good game”.  I was unsure about hockey at first, worried that it would demand too much of us, but it is so many things that are good for you right now that we all happily attend every game.

Today you earned the “herd hat” for good play – it was an extra special birthday gift.  oliverherdhat

We still struggle sometimes – all of your athletic strength is equally matched with strong will and opinions and you have a high spirited energy that sometimes carries you away.  Other times, there is so much love and caring and patience that comes out of you.  It’s hard to know which one we are going to get, but I see all of that leveling out as you mature.

For your birthday this year, you invited your two best buddies for a sleepover and a movie (Lego Batman).  It was a high energy evening with lots of popcorn, laughs (until 11:30), video games (hockey, of course), and late-night cake.  20170217_182832


On your actual birthday – today – we had hockey, a shopping trip to spend your gift cards (you love being able to choose), ordered pizza to eat downstairs in front of a movie, and more cake. We didn’t get many pictures but trust me – at the end of the day you told me you loved every gift you received and bought, and everything we did with your friends and family.  You felt loved and you were grateful.

I love you more with every day, with every secret kiss…


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happy birthday to me

This year, my birthday weekend (because everyone deserves at least a birthday weekend) was a road trip to NB.  The goal was to watch the Superbowl with my dad, but it had a whole lot of added perks!

Like a sprinkle donut break on the road.  20170204_100352Like lovely artwork by these two lovely ladies.  20170204_181938Like a little music-making, a visit, and cake with family.20170204_201002Like a little snowfall.20170205_160759Like snow angels with this angel.20170205_163744Like a little snowy outdoor fun with this beauty (and a few silly-faced selfies).  20170205_163851Like snowy follow the leader.20170205_164427Like a cheering buddy for the superbowl.20170205_172639_014Like watching the superbowl with this guy.  He might not be a cheering buddy when it comes to the patriot, but he’s my favorite guy to watch football with!  20170205_174455

Hubby and the kids also had cake for me on Friday night, so I guess I would call that a pretty full birthday weekend!

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Emery turns 6!

Emery … you are 6!


You are our sensitive-but-sometimes-feisty, cautious-but-sometimes-impulsive, thoughtful-(okay-always-thoughtful) six year old boy today!

Your imagination is big and you are super creative.  You like reading and writing (especially writing) and crafting.  You love all the typical boy things – vehicles, minecraft, star wars – but will sit and play dolls with eleanor too.  You love playing with your siblings – you’re so loving.  You take pride when you do something well and wear it all over your face.

Here are some more things about you as you turn six:

  • You are a Beaver!  You look forward to Wednesday nights and seem proud to put on your uniform!
  • You are so great at reading – english and french!  You get more confident with your reading every day.
  • You started curling this year and have been killing it!  I hope you stick with it.
  • You still like snuggling from time to time.  We have big hugs, a secret kiss, and a song at bedtime (my favorite time of day).
  • You do have your moments when you fight back (to us and your siblings).  We correct it but part of me is glad you stand up for yourself.
  • When playing in minecraft, you surprise me with the things you build – they are so creative!
  • You like words and sounds and you often rhyme or pick out funny sounds within words.


This year we gave you the choice between having the typical big party at our place with your friends or picking two of your best buddies for a sleepover and going somewhere special.  You chose the sleepover so we took luke and akshat to the indoor trampoline park, mcdonald’s, and then back to our place for cake and ice cream.  It was so much fun!

And of course we had our own mini celebration here today.  Regardless of how we celebrate, my goal is always to make you feel special… and I’m pretty sure we managed that!  

Love you to pieces… Mommy







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Eleanor’s First Haircut

It’s funny how I can have two boys with thick fast-growing hair and also have a girl who, for three years, has had thin, wispy hair that seems to grow very slowly and in patches.  She sleeps and her hair becomes a frizzy mess that halos around her head.

I took her for her first real haircut not long after her third birthday – not because she truly needed it, but because the two pieces that have grown long kept falling into her eyes.  And I thought a little cut might make it thicken up a bit.

She was so very excited but she really had no concept of what a haircut was so I expected her to balk once she saw the big chairs and strangers started talking to her.

Nope.  She climbed right up in the seat and sat perfectly still for the seven minutes it took the hairdresser to trim her bangs and even out the back.

She felt so pretty when her hair was done.  It didn’t look that much different but I suppose every girl feels special after a little pampering!  20160831_173409-copy

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Eleanor Turns 3!

My lovely,

You are the sweetest of sweets, the brightest of lights!


You are such a girly girl.  It amazes me how inherent the “girly” is when you are surrounded by trucks and superheroes and rough-and-tumble boys all of the time.  You will often spend long periods of time tucking your dolls in, changing their clothes, and hugging them.  When I asked you what you would like for your birthday, you said, “Ummmm…. PINK!”.


You love to make people laugh and have a smile that draws people in.  You are sometimes shy around people you don’t know, but it usually doesn’t last long.  And even that is becoming less frequent as you get older.


You are (usually) so easy-going and happy-go-lucky and just want to be silly and have fun.  Being your mom is so much fun.

Here are some things about you as you turn three…

  • You love to go shopping with mommy.  Sometimes you wave and say hi to people, sometimes you sing ‘Let it Go’ loudly as we roll down the aisles.  Either way, people are drawn to you and can’t help but say hi.
  • You know all of your letters and some of your numbers.
  • You are into Paw Patrol and Frozen.  Your two other favorite shows are Busytown Mysteries and SuperWhy.
  • You are the girl of a thousand faces – you scrunch your face into every emotion and love it when people laugh at you.
  • You love books and our time reading bedtime stories.
  • You take NO crap from your brothers.
  • You love swimming and are swimming no problem this summer with your life jacket on.
  • You love to be helpful!  (I, for one, hope this continues for a looooong time)
  • You have the loveliest curly hair but most of the time you really dislike ponytails or hair bands.
  • You really like singing lately.  You’ve always sung here and there but lately you have found your voice, are learning more songs, and rocking it more loudly.

When I asked you today how you felt now that you are three, you said, “Ummm… BIG!  I’m not two!”.

We had a combo birthday party for you and your cousins and nanny while we were camping last week, but today we hung paw patrol decorations and had a paw patrol cake because it is your special day!



Mmm… cake!!20160815_174813

Opening presents on our camping trip.20160813_190735

And a selfie with mommy just because it makes me happy.  I can’t wait to see what 3-year-old you brings to the party.  20160809_145414

Love you,