Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Clean versus tidy

 I am obsessed with having a tidy house . 
Note that I said tidy, not clean.

I have no illusions about my housekeeping skills. I am definitely not a clean freak. I remember the first time I went to someones house and noticed that they had vacuum marks on their couch, or the first time I heard that people wash their baseboards on a regular basis. Whaaaaaaaat! I can't think of a time in my life when it ever occurred to me to do such a thing. When I go on pinterest and see tips for cleaning ones dishwasher and laundry machine I almost laugh. The funny thing is,  I obsess over tidy counters, well made beds, and organized closets. Go figure!

 My baseboards are dusty and so are my bookshelves, but they have been carefully curated and organized for maximum viewing pleasure. Whether they are dusty, is no concern of mine. My floors are often sticky and strewn with sawdust from my husband's workshop , but are ALWAYS swept at the end of the day.

 My windows and mirrors are often covered in fingerprints, and I couldn't care less. I don't care how often my sheets are changed or whether my walls are washed. I give our main bathroom a good scrub just before company comes over, but our on suit bathroom can get pretty scary. My kitchen and closet are probably the "cleanest" areas of my house. I frequently wipe my cupboard shelves off and organize and de-junk my baking, spices and Tupperware cupboards. I hardly ever notice grime that accumulates around the kitchen facet or the fact that my fridge shelves could use a scrub. I think I have washed the outside of my kitchen cabinets once and I often neglect the interior of my microwave. I can't stand cluttered counters and hide as many kitchen appliances as possible. My kitchen aid mixer and vita mix base, toaster and knife set are tolerated. Our kitchen window is filled with little potted plants at the moment and it is driving me insane.
My pantry is pretty awesome though.  

My couches are in desperate need of a good vacuuming but I am more concerned about the arrangement of throw pillows.  The walls of my entryway are diabolical but it is the piles of shoes, backpacks and sweaters make me want to holler at my family. Our banister could use a god scrub but I am more focused on the bits of fluff and debris on our carpeted staircase. What's up with that?

 Our master bedroom is generally always tidy, aside from the pile of clothing beside my husbands side of the bed. My closet is organized by color and  by color and all my jewelry and accessories are neatly displayed.I recently removed my children's dresser from their room, because I was tired of wading knee deep through their clothing.  I solved the problem by getting rid of half of it and putting what remained on the highest shelf of their closet. 

If something doesn't have a place it gets chucked in the garbage or donated to the thrift store. I can't tolerate  clutter. It actually makes me itchy and irritable.  After I have organized and purged the content of a room, vacuuming the floor is as good as cream cheese icing on a cupcake. *sigh*  

Ever since I could remember I have had an incredible need for tidiness. I feel an incredible sense of peace when everything is in its place.  I don't know if it is partially due to the fact that I was raised with the motto "work before play" but, I have a difficult time enjoying myself when there is a pile of dirty dishes on the counter or unmade beds. Call me crazy, but they haunt me until they are taken care of. A well dressed bed makes me a happy girl, and so does a pile of neatly folded laundry. On the rare occasion that my entire house is clean at the same time I feel like a songbird in spring. I often joke that only half my house is tidy on any given day, because while I am cleaning one part my children are gleefully undoing the other half. 

Of the joys of "domesticity"!

I thoroughly enjoyed this blog article called "In pursuit of Martha Points". It made me howl with laughter!

Sunday, April 6, 2014

Froggy Birthday: Amelia turns five!

As most of you know know, Amelia is OBSESSED with frogs, so it wasn't a surprise when she asked for a "froggy" themed birthday party. 

Everything HAD to be green of course. Claire thoroughly enjoyed helping with the streamers.  

"Hoppy Birthday"

Her dad caught a bucket full of frogs the night before so that Amelia and her guests had plenty of frogs to admire.

Amelia's friends made their own frog party hats which were encrusted with sparkles, glitter and sequins.

Our neighbor brought these awesome frog cupcakes! 

Amelia's guests took home little pots with soil and sunflower seeds.  

Enjoying "frog eggs", otherwise known as passion fruit seeds.  

I went with an ice cream cake again this year as cake decorating is not my thing. For lunch we enjoyed Amelia's favorite foods "ants on a log" (celery with peanut better and raisins), potato salad, chicken skewers, chips, hummus, pita bread, and something called worms and dirt. 

Capturing those moments..

The other day I cornered a lovely woman named Nancy at church and asked her if she would be interested in photographing the birth of our third child. When her eyes lit up, I knew that I had asked the right person. I happened to know that she was comfortable with birth and that she had some midwifery training as well. Furthermore, her presence is one that I would welcome at a birth. 

When Amelia was born, my sister and mom snapped a few photos and took some video footage. When I realized how important those photos were and how often I looked at them, I knew that I would want every subsequent birth photographed.  At Claire's birth, we hardly had time to pull out our camera before she was born. Nathaniel snapped a few of me walking with Amelia during early labor and then at Starbucks while I was ordering a chai latte.  Other than that, the only photos we have are the ones a student nurse managed to snap before I gave birth to my second child.

When Nathaniel and I started talking about where we wanted to move to after our posting in Alexis Creek, I knew that it had to be someplace where I would have access to midwifery care and the option of a home birth. I also knew that I would want to to hire a photographer to capture it. I also also looking forward to having belly and infant photos taken as well. . If this is going to be my last pregnancy and birth I want to celebrate and commemorate it.

Here are a few images I snagged off Google images of births that get me excited about having a home birth again and having a photographer present to capture all the special moments.

Saturday, April 5, 2014

Birthday Bliss: Claire turns Three!

Today we finally celebrated Claire's third birthday this morning with a tea party. I had far too much fun decorating the dining area with poms, peonies, napkins, streamers, fancy tired tray, polka dot napkins and whatever else I could find around the house. 

Claire wore a lace crown my girlfriend Heidi and I made back in January, and her favorite tutu of course. All the girls got a pair of wings and a wand to play with. 

I was excited to finally have an opportunity to use these darling ballerina fairy cupcake toppers. I think I purchased them at Homesense  before Claire was born.

We dined on chocolate haystacks, a heaping plate of fruit, tea sandwiches, chocolate cupcakes with cream cheese frosting, and mini banana chocolate chip muffins. 

I love Claire's little friends. 


After all the festivities the girls watched a few minutes of  the "Tangled" movie Claire had received  and enjoyed some kettle corn.

Saturday, March 29, 2014

It's a BOY!!!!!!!

I am so excited to announce that we are expecting a BOY! We are thrilled! I went for my ultrasound on Wednesday not expecting to find out the gender but hoping that the ultrasound technician would be able to  put it in the report for my midwife. After she finished the diagnostic portion of the ultrasound, she turned the screen so that I could see my baby. At one point I pointed at the screen and said "is that a penis"? When she nodded and said "it certainly looks like that to me", my heart leapt with joy! Nathaniel and I would have been happy to welcome another little girl into our family, but we are looking forward to the opportunity to raise a little man. We had decided before we got pregnant that this would be our last child regardless of the gender, so this was a treat.


Saturday, March 15, 2014

He is Alive!!!

Everyone once and awhile I hear a song that speaks to the deepest parts of me. Right now, that song is Forever (Live) by Kari Jobe. As Easter approaches I cant help but think about the tremendous sacrifice that Jesus made for mankind. I feel overwhelmed with gratitude and wonder. As tears pour down my cheeks my daughters ask "why are you crying mom".  I am crying because I am so thankful for what Jesus did for me. He is so good!

One final breath He gave
As Heaven looked away
The Son of God was laid in darkness
A battle in the grave
The war on death was waged
The power of hell forever broken
The ground began to shake
The stone was rolled away
His perfect love could not be overcome
Now death where is your sting
Our resurrected King has rendered you defeated
Forever, He is glorified
Forever, He is lifted high
Forever, He is risen
He is alive
He is alive

I recently watched The Lion the Witch and the Wardrobe with my girls and loved being able to explain how Jesus is like the lion in the film. He took our penalty upon himself so that we would be freed, just as he offered himself as a sacrifice in exchange for Edmund's  freedom. 
Anyone can die for a cause, and there have been many martyrs throughout history, but only Jesus had the power to resurrect himself from the grave and break the power of sin over mankind. And that is why I sing "Hallelujah the lamb has overcome" at the top of my lungs!!!!!



Thursday, March 13, 2014


I love the "currently" posts I see around blog land, so I thought I would fill one out.

Reading...  "The Jesus I never Knew" by Philip Yancy and a new magazine called Click.
Playing... with rad lab (an amazing editing program with cool filters).
Trying... to find the energy to exercise and purge my closets.
Cooking... Lots of chicken vegetable soup (broccoli, kale, carrots).
Eating... Dark chocolate with almonds.
Drinking... Water and mason jars of piping hot tea spiked with coffee.
Calling... (not a fan of the phone)
Texting... furniture clients
Pinning.. ideas for my daughters upcoming birthdays.
Tweeting... (I've never tweeted before).
Instagraming.. I should figure out how to do this....
Crafting...  I have plans to add some black lace to my new lamps shades.
Scrapping... Project LIFE
Doing...  editing photos and planning my next blog post
Going... (thinking about going to Victoria this weekend to visit my brother and sister in-law)
Loving... the fact that Amelia finally figured out how to ride her bicycle.
Hating... the size of my boobs.
Discovering... new life bursting out of the earth.
Enjoying... the sunshine pouring in through the window
Thinking... about what a volatile pregnant woman I have become.
Feeling... overly emotional, discouraged, sensitive and TIRED!
Hoping... that I start feeling more normal and energetic.
Listening... to my eldest daughter watch Wild Kratts (her favorite show)
Celebrating... Amelia's birthday soon (she is turning five on the 18th)
Smelling... the chicken soup that my husband is eating for lunch
Thanking... all my amazing girlfriends for their support, encouragement, empathy and friendship.
Considering... getting a hair cut.
Finishing... being a doula... at least until my third child is about nine months old.
Starting... to spring clean.