Welcome! I'm Cookie's Mom. You can learn all about Cookie and why I blog here: About Cookie's Chronicles. If you're new here, you may want to SUBSCRIBE TO MY RSS FEED. Thanks for stopping by! Pull up a beach chair and be my guest, won't you?

Friday, July 29, 2011

August Guest Blogger Extravaganza!

Yes, I said extravaganza!

I'm taking the month of August off. Well, ish. You may still find me poking around Cookie's Book Club, commenting on guest bloggers' posts, or participating in Wordless Wednesday.

Thanks to some fabulous Twitter friends - who also happen to be fabulous bloggy-friends - I have a spectacular guest lineup to keep you entertained in my absence. I am so very grateful to these ladies for allowing me this break! I hope you will stop by to greet them and show them some love.

Week 1
Rachel of Cool Bean Mommas - Relax, Just do it...
Deb of The Monster in Your Closet - Mother Child Mother
Theresa of A Mountain Momma - Come from Away Momma

Week 2
Kimberly of Mama's Monologues - Fairy Tale Life
Mandi of Smile and Mama With Me - Hand in Hand
Robin of Farewell Stranger - Love in a Grain of Sand

Week 3
Jen of Runner Mom - These are the Moments
Abby of Mommy Moments With Abby - Losing Yourself in Parenting
Leighann of Multitasking Mumma - Big Girl Bed

Week 4
Rach of Life With Baby Donut - Knitted Together
Samantha of MEDTOPICWRITER - The Nuts and Bolts of Bike Safety
Brittany of Changing Diapers and Taking Names - Thoughts on Motherhood

Week 5
Christine of The Aums - What Goes in Must Come Out
Carri of Mommy's Little Monster Blake - My New Normal
Closing Thoughts from Cookie's Mom 

My Family is Growing!

You may recall that we recently welcome a new addition to the family, Jack's friend monster (aka Carl). Carl's been around for a while, and mostly he's pretty good about picking up after himself and not taking up too much space.

A couple of weeks ago, Jack visited his grandma with dad (mom stayed home). Lucky for me, monster left his mom behind to keep me company. When Jack returned home, Jack introduced me to his new friends - plural. In no particular order, here are the newest members of our family:

Turtle - Okay... turtles are harmless enough. I can handle a turtle in the house.

Mantis - this new friend kind of gives mommy the squeemies.

Lion - so far no humans have been digested by this new guest.

I'm hoping Jack's lion friend looks like this:

and not like this:

Each of Jack's new friends have to give me a hug in the morning before Jack gives me a hug. Picture me with my arms wrapped around air 4 times in a row. The things we do for our kids.

I had a brief conversation with Jack about just how many new friends I might expect in the future. I asked him where they all slept and if there was room for anymore. He assured me that they could all fit in his bed, except for Lion. Lion sleeps on the couch. And then he decided that there might be room for one more, but no more than six altogether. I guess we've forgotten all about monster's mom by now. I'm okay with that, and happy to know that we're almost at capacity.

Now if you'll excuse me, I have a few invisible friends and one flesh and blood human to read to before quiet time, and some of them are not very patient!

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

I'm linked up at Bruna's Let's Bee Friends today!

Let's BEE Friends

Thursday, July 28, 2011

Cleaning House Collage

Today I'm linking up with Mama Kat for her Pretty Much World Famous Writer's Workshop.
The prompt that inspired this post: Share a favorite craft or game that will keep your kids busy for at least 20 minutes.
Mama’s Losin’ It

Cleaning house Collage
Keeping a bouncy preschool boy busy AND out of trouble for more than about five minutes at a time is one of my greatest challenges.
Playtime with friends will occupy my son for long periods of time, but what to do when we’re home alone together and I have work to do or phone calls to make? 

It’s not just me right? You’ve probably experienced this too. You tell your child, "I need to make a few phone calls. I’ll be about 15 minutes.” Two minutes into the first phone call, your child is pulling on your leg (if you’re lucky – stomping on your foot if you’re not) and screaming/singing/making wild animal sounds as loudly as possible.
Sometimes, you just need to occupy your child long enough to get that one thing done without distraction and then you can go back to your usual multitasking supermom ways.
Sure, I could plunk him down in front of the TV, and sometimes that’s a necessity. Too much of that though and I’ll have to give back my Mom of the Year Award. Alright, I don’t really have a Mom of the Year Award, but pretending that I do is a real confidence boost. It makes me a better mom!
So here it is, my gift to you. This recently discovered activity keeps my child busy for long periods of time AND helps clean my house. I'm a piler. That is, I collect magazines and papers of all kinds in piles. Unfortunately, I don't enjoy cluttered spaces. I resolve this internal conflict by purging my piles pretty regularly. 
Jack recently discovered scissors and LOVES to cut things up. When it's time for a pile purge, I rifle through the magazines and papers setting aside any articles that I want to keep and then hand the rest to Jack. He then sits at his table with a large piece of craft paper, the magazines, scissors and a glue stick and collages to his heart's content. Here's his latest work:

Pretty cool, huh? It looked like so much fun that I just had to try it myself:
We moms need our creative outlets too!

Part of the reason that this works to keep Jack occupied is its novelty. I fully expect this craft to be utterly boring some day soon, and I will have to come up with a new quiet activity. Until then, I set supplies aside and ration them a bit. I have a little craft box full of goodies that comes out just on special occasions (i.e. when I need a moment of peace).

Here's to our children's creative energy. May it be used for good (fun collage crafts) rather than evil (child-inspired home renovation - aka vandalism).

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

The Blog on Fire Awards:
And the awards go to...

Mandi of Smile and Mama with Me just awarded me the Blog on Fire award! How cool is that? No, you're right, it's not cool at all. It's HOT! Just look at it. It's got flames! Flames!!!

I am flattered to be selected. Thanks Mandi! I'll do my best to live up to the honour.

As a recipient of the award I must tell you 7 things about myself and finally pass on the award to 10 other deserving bloggers. 

Check out my posts for The Stylish Blogger Award and The Versatile Blogger Award for some interesting tidbits about me and some links to other fabulous bloggers.

I'm starting to feel like the well is running dry and I'm not sure what else there is to say about me, so this time I asked some friends for inspiration.  

Thanks to MamaRobinJ, CoolBeanMommas, DonutsMama, MamaWantsThis, MultitaskMumma and the one and only 'hubby' for the ideas and questions that inspired these 7 things about me:

1. Inspired by Rach of Life With Baby Donut: What is it that you love about knitting and gardening? There's something peaceful about these pursuits. The analytical part of the brain - the worrying part of the brain - turns off and focuses gently on a single task. It's very zen like... yet I am accomplishing something tangible. For someone like me who has a hard time with things like meditation (though I'm trying), peaceful activity is just the ticket!

2. Inspired by Alison of Mama Wants This: What are your biggest pet peeves? This could be an entire post... but... I'll share a few for now.
  • People who walk through a door that I was holding open for my small child, thus positioning themselves between my small child and I, practically running us both over in the process. Can you say 'oblivious'?
  • People who step in front of my moving stroller causing me to stop suddenly, jamming the stroller handle into my abdomen, rather than run them over. You're welcome! Have a nice day!
  • People who drive 25km (that's 15 miles) under the speed limit. This typically co-occurs with a low-seated posture requiring an intense craning of the neck over the steering wheel. I suppose I would drive that slow too if I had absolutely no peripheral view.
Hmm... I'm sensing a traffic-related theme here.

3. A question from Robin of Farewell Stranger: How many places have you lived? Well, let's see: Born in London, grew up in Brampton and Ottawa, university (the first time) in Halifax, bought my own place in Mississauga, and then moved here to Calgary. That's... six! That's different from the number of times I have moved which is... just doing the math... 11 times! Yeesh. That's probably enough for a lifetime, but chances are I'm not done yet.

4. A question from Rachel of Cool Bean Mommas: Tell us about a funny labour incident! Well, the whole labour experience is sort of funny to me. I spent the whole eve of the day that Jack was born cleaning curtains, covers on bolster pillows, dusting the tops of very high things - you know... nesting. Only I didn't acknowledge that it was nesting, because Jack wasn't due for another three weeks. I put towels in the bed and the car in case my water broke while I was being perfectly still (???). Well, my water broke that very night ...over the toilet. Convenient, no? We arrived at the hospital, carefully packed bag in hand, breathing lessons under our belts. My contractions were 2 minutes apart almost instantly and Jack was born about 4 hours later. There was no time to breathe. There was only time to hold on (to hubby, of course) for dear life. The only thing I needed from that damn bag that I didn't have was a hair elastic (labour is one sweaty endeavour)! I'm still shocked to this day that I didn't swear... not even once (those that know me well know what a truly remarkable thing this is).

5. Inspired by my husband: Maybe you could talk about how your mom was a Girl Guide leader, so you learned to always be prepared. Yes, that's why I am often annoyingly ready for any eventuality and why I pack only as lightly as is absolutely necessary. I can carry everything I need for an outing in the tiniest of purses... but I'd rather not. Or you could talk about how your mom was an English major who always corrected you when you spoke, so you turned into a grammar Nazi. It's true. I am incapable of reading something without correcting the grammar at the same time.  I guess what my husband is saying is that two of my best skills - which are also two of my strongest neuroses - are my mom's doing. Thanks mom... I think.

6. A question from Leighann of Multitasking Mumma: Would you ever move tomorrow without your belongings for $10,000,000? Oh, yes, most definitely! Can I take my pictures? No? (I suppose I could get around that by uploading them all to Flickr.) There's something about starting over that is very appealing. We all get attached to our stuff. Stuff can be replaced (especially if I now have 10,000,000 bones)! Plus stuff can be a burden. Stuff needs to be taken care of it. It would be nice to let it all go... at least for a little while. Man, what I could do with $10,000,000!

7. And one more question from Robin of Farewell Stranger: What's your dream holiday? This is pretty easy - well... easy to describe - not so easy to execute. First of all, my dream holiday is LOOOONG - at least a month. It involves plenty of warm (not too hot) weather and sunshine, opportunities to hike and bike and explore the countryside, opportunities to meet the locals and share in their customs, great local food and drink, plenty of opportunity to rest, read and write, and regular massages. Ideally I will not have to cook or clean at all, and, while I'm dreaming, Oprah will have a few of her favourite things waiting for me at the hotel when I arrive. I should stop there. Really, I should have stopped at massages, but I think it's important to dream BIG!

And now to pass the torch to 10 of my deserving blog-mates. These ladies' blogs are smokin' hot! Drop by and show them some comment love!

1. Stasha of The Good Life - Stasha takes really wonderful photos. Check out her 365 project. She also hosts Monday Listicles, which has inspired a number of my own posts.

2. Galit of These Little Waves - Galit's blog is just so beautiful. It's the Mercedes to my Chevrolet. Galit is a mom, a writer, and a supportive friend to her fellow bloggers.

3. Amanda of Lilahbility - Amanda's blog is full of photos of her little angel, Lilah. I challenge you to find a cuter kid than Lilah (other than mine, of course).

4. Barbara of Footprints in the Sand - Barbara is so supportive of my little blog! She has a lovely family and lives in one of the most beautiful cities in the world.

5. Jen of Runner Mom - Jen is an inspiration to me. She lives a healthy and environmentally conscious life. Her posts are honest and highly entertaining.

6. Kimberly of Zook Book Nook - She's a writer-mama who writes about the link between writing and motherhood, and shares tips for staying fresh in the blogging world.

7. Carla of Mrs. No-No Knows - Mrs. No-No is your new best friend! Don't know what to make for dinner this week? Check out her weekly meal plans and recipes for ideas.

8. Britt of Changing Diapers and Taking Names - Britt is your host for the Momday Monday Twitter hop and Wine Down Wednesday Blog Hop. She also shares some fabulous recipes with readers.

9. Theresa of A Mountain Momma - Theresa is a mom of two, just trying to make it all work. We can relate! She's not afraid to voice her opinion and stand up for what she believes in. Love that!

10. Hillary of Superhero Princess - Hillary is a teacher and mom who has great insights into the workings of the school-aged mind. She's believes in helping kids to develop social, communication and relationship skills. She's a real life hero.

Wordless Wednesday: Chef Jacques

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
We've decided to let Jack pick one supper meal per week that we will all prepare as a family. This was his first selection: Silly face meat and potato pies!

Monday, July 25, 2011

What 'Green' Means to Me

Today, I'm linking up again with Stasha from The Good Life for Monday Listicles. She has a great list of 10 Things Green that's worth checking out (her lists always include fabulous photos).

Green is....

1. Green is a name for the movement to save the environment. The whole "green thing" has taken on a life of its own. If it hasn't landed in your inbox yet, check out this email that's been going around: The Green Thing.

2. Green is a colour! Last week, I shared Ten Words I Could Live Without, where I shared my desire to return the word green to its rightful place as a colour... just like in the good old days. Green is my favourite colour. Read the rest of my green words and you'll see why.

3. Green is the colour of my birthstone, the grand and beautiful emerald. Coincidence that it's my favourite colour?

4. Green is the colour of nature. I love trees. I love how they sound when they move together à la Phenomenon. There's nothing more restful than the view from the top of a mountain, and that view just wouldn't be the same without the carpet of trees that lines the slopes.

5. Green is also the colour of envy. For example, I am envious of the person with the lifestyle and personality to match this shoe!


6. Green is for avocado. Avocados make everything better, especially salads and sandwiches. All of my favourite mexican foods are elevated to higher heights by the beautiful and delicious guacamole. By the way, avocados are a great way to add healthy fat to your diet. They're full of MUFAs - "bless you" - thank-you, but I didn't sneeze. MUFA stands for monounsaturated fatty acid. It's good stuff.

7 & 8. Green is for garden hose and green is for grass. Nothing says summer like running through the sprinkler on the front lawn!

9 & 10 &... Green is for shamrocks and leprechauns and all other things Irish. Green beer - it's not JUST for St. Patrick's day anymore!

Now, is it any wonder that I love the colour green?

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

What do you think of when you think of the word 'green'?

The Green Thing: email joke

I recently received this 'joke' (well, I found it highly amusing) in my email inbox and had to share it all with you.

The Green Thing
In the line at the store, the cashier told the older woman that she should bring her own grocery bag because plastic bags weren't good for the environment.
The woman apologized to him and explained, "We didn't have the green thing back in my day."
The clerk responded, "That's our problem today. The former generation did not care enough to save our environment."
He was right, that generation didn't have the green thing in its day.
Back then, they returned their milk bottles, soda bottles and beer bottles to the store. The store sent them back to the plant to be washed and sterilized and refilled, so it could use the same bottles over and over. So they really were recycled.
But they didn't have the green thing back in that customer's day.
In her day, they walked up stairs, because they didn't have an escalator in every store and office building. They walked to the grocery store and didn't climb into a 300-horsepower machine every time they had to go two blocks.
But she was right. They didn't have the green thing in her day.
Back then, they washed the baby's diapers because they didn't have the throw-away kind. They dried clothes on a line, not in an energy gobbling machine burning up 220 volts - wind and solar power really did dry the clothes. Kids got hand-me-down clothes from their brothers or sisters, not always brand-new clothing.
But that old lady is right; they didn't have the green thing back in her day.
Back then, they had one TV, or radio, in the house - not a TV in every room. And the TV had a small screen the size of a handkerchief, not a screen the size of the state of Montana. In the kitchen, they blended and stirred by hand because they didn't have electric machines to do everything for you. When they packaged a fragile item to send in the mail, they used a wadded up old newspaper to cushion it, not Styrofoam or plastic bubble wrap.
Back then, they didn't fire up an engine and burn gasoline just to cut the lawn. They used a push mower that ran on human power. They exercised by working so they didn't need to go to a health club to run on treadmills that operate on electricity.
But she's right; they didn't have the green thing back then.
They drank from a fountain when they were thirsty instead of using a cup or a plastic bottle every time they had a drink of water. They refilled their writing pens with ink instead of buying a new pen, and they replaced the razor blades in a razor instead of throwing away the whole razor just because the blade got dull.
But they didn't have the green thing back then.
Back then, people took the streetcar or a bus and kids rode their bikes to school or rode the school bus instead of turning their moms into a 24-hour taxi service. They had one electrical outlet in a room, not an entire bank of sockets to power a dozen appliances. And they didn't need a computerized gadget to receive a signal beamed from satellites 2,000 miles out in space in order to find the nearest pizza joint.
But isn't it sad the current generation laments how wasteful the old folks
were just because they didn't have the green thing back then?

Saturday, July 23, 2011

Life's Lessons: The Solo Vacation Edition

It's time to reflect on what I have learned this past week, so I'm linking up with Rach at Life with Baby Donut and Sara at Life's Recipe for Life's Lessons.

1. My boys were away for a few days and I did not die of loneliness. As odd as it seemed that I would not join them on their mini-vacation (a visit to Grandma's), it turned out to be a brilliant idea.

2. I had many things to take care of while they were gone, but also... get this... slept in. Twice! I mean, really slept in. Not just the laying in bed listening to the clamour with my eyes closed wishing the boys would go outside or to the basement or anywhere that I can't here them just for an hour or so sort of sleeping in. I mean, sleeping in until 9:30 (kids... trust me... that's a heck of a sleep in when you're a mom)!

3. I also didn't starve! I didn't eat the gourmet meals I had planned for myself, but I ate. Sandwiches mostly, greasy take-out food frequently, and ice cream bars that I didn't have to share! With anyone!!

4. I drove in my car listening to music that I wanted to listen to, from start to finish, without having to answer even one question from the back seat!

5. My brain was devoid of questions of any sort for actual minutes at a time! There was space in there for original thought! I can't express just how restorative this was for me.

6. I was reminded that I am pretty self-sufficient in general when there isn't someone else around to rely on (aka delegate to). It was a productive few days, in addition to being restful.

7. I can spend four whole days alone without dying of boredom. I resisted the urge to call friends and fill my days with social events. That was tough. I love my friends, AND it was one big party here last week as the Calgary Stampede took over the town. I resisted the temptations and by the end of the four days felt truly rested. Almost human again!

8. That gift of the few days on my own was enough to remind me that my boys want the best for me, and that the tiniest boy doesn't do what he does to drive me mad. In fact, I adore my boys for who they are and it was nice to have the opportunity to stand back from the chaos and appreciate them.

9.  Of course, we are right back on schedule now and I'm as exhausted as I was before the boys went away, but ultimately it was great to know that rest is possible!

10. And I did miss them. It was very quiet around here while they were gone which was both lovely and sad at the same time. I'm happy to have them back with me. I'm feeling renewed. It was a great week!

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

What did you learn this week?

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Wordless Wednesday: The Joy of Running

This picture says it all for me right now. At three years old, Jack is a happy blur of activity!
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
Today I'm linked up with:

AND 5 Minutes for Mom

Monday, July 18, 2011

Ten Words I Could Live Without!

Today, I am linking up with Stasha from
The Good Life for Monday Listicles, because I was very inspired to submit these...

Ten Words I Could Live Without

Dishes – Because this word doesn’t mean, “Ooh look at these beautiful dishes. Let’s buy the set!” When I hear this word, I know that there’s a mess that needs cleaning and I’d better be anywhere but the kitchen!

Why – The word as sentence. [Why? Well, because, Jack, blah, blah, blah... And repeat ad nauseum.] I'm told it's a phase (otherwise known as 'the terrific threes'), but I have to say, it’s crazy-making!

Food – I love food, don’t get me wrong, it’s just that I’m tired of preparing it.

Mosquitoes – If the word goes, do the blood-sucking, disease-carrying agents of evil go with it?

Like – Because there are many other words that mean what it used to mean (1. the same or similar, resembling; 2. enjoy or appreciate, prefer; etc.), and because, like, the way it is used today is, like, incredibly annoying and juvenile (not that I’ve never used it myself to, like, fill a gap in speech).

Whatever – Because it’s lost all meaning, in fact now meaning pretty much nothing at all. (Okay, I’ve used this one too, but I am not proud of that. If this word went away, I wouldn’t have to be, like, totally embarrassed for uttering it.)

Irregardless – People, this is not a word. Let it go.

Paradigm – As in paradigm shift, as in just because you use it in a sentence doesn’t make you sound smart, and it also doesn’t automagically revolutionize stuff.

Epic – I apologize to my young and hip friends – maybe I’m just not cool enough to use this word – but not everything is ‘epic’.

Green – I’m as concerned about the environment as the next person, but I truly miss being able to describe something as green simply because it emits photons at a particular wavelength.

Thanks Stasha! That was like therapy!

Saturday, July 16, 2011

Meditating Mama: I took the first step!

Being a mom is very rewarding, but also very challenging. It's Mom-I'm-hungry-Why-is-the-sky-blue-Why-are-you-rubbing-your-forehead-like-that challenging! It's difficult to find time to breathe.

So this morning, I decided to give meditation a try. I've done a little meditating in the past - not much - just enough to know that it can be helpful and bring a sense of calm to an otherwise anxiety-provoked existence.

The boys have been away for a few days. I spent the first days getting things done and sleeping. Ah, sleep, how I have missed you! Today, was meditation day. I decided to start slow - just five minutes today to get the feel of it. No pressure! I woke up too early but ready to begin. I sat on the floor and closed my eyes.

Something was missing. A candle. I needed a candle. I had just the one - a soothingly scented purple candle to inspire deep thoughts. Perfect! ... but... I needed something to light it with... so I went looking for a match.

There were no matches in the first few places I looked, but I did find an enormous amount of dust that needed to be wiped off of a dresser. Also, it was such a lovely day I opened up all of the windows. I found a box and checked inside for matches. No matches, but it did contain a beautiful crystal that used to hang on a window. It would be lovely if I needed something to focus on... you know... if I got distracted. It just needed a pretty ribbon to hang from. I rummaged through another drawer and found the perfect pearlescent blue ribbon, fed it through the loop of the crystal and tied it in a neat bow.

I went to the kitchen to look for matches, found some, and then remembered that I needed to feed the cat and give her some medicine.... which then reminded me that I needed to clean out her litter box. That reminded me that I needed to go to the bathroom myself. No point trying to meditate with a full bladder.

Relieved, candle lit, beautiful chirping bird sounds spilling in through the windows, I sat on the floor and closed my eyes. As my thoughts drifted to discomfort or my to-do list, trying to breathe "naturally", I returned to the mantra, "so hum" ("I am"). So hum... So hum... I am... I am... I am hungry, I thought, as my tummy rumbled. So hum... This isn't working. How can I quiet my mind when my stomach is talking to me? Just a quick bite to eat, that's all I needed. Back to the kitchen I went and poured myself a bowl of cereal. I figured I might as well just have breakfast and then return to meditating.

Now I was nourished and ready to clear my mind of debris. I sat again, legs crossed, palms open and closed my eyes. I was slouching. I'm not supposed to be slouching. I returned from the living room with a foam block, after carrying some dirty dishes to the kitchen, rinsing the cat's food bowl and having a glass of lemonade.

So hum... So hum... SAM! (my cat) Do NOT drag your tail through the flame! PLEASE! Be careful, Sammy. Exhale. So hum... So hum... So hum...

My cat has no trouble relaxing.

After a few deep, cleansing breaths I decided that it had been a good first effort and blew out the candle. As distracted as I had been, I gave myself credit for the effort. And I did feel more relaxed!

Now everything is set up for tomorrow, so there should be nothing to distract me.... Okay, there will still be plenty to distract me, but, with time and practice, I'm confident that this will get easier. I can already feel the benefits.

If you're feeling tense or under pressure, I highly recommend taking a few moments for yourself each morning before your day begins, meditating, doing yoga, writing in a journal or performing some other relaxing activity that is all about you!


If you like, you can try this meditation guided by Deepak Choprah.

If you are unable to view this video, you can link to it directly here: http://youtu.be/D56tUOdpgts

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Red Heart's 31 Days of Giving

This morning, I was talking with some friends about paying generosities forward, and then, moments later, something arrived in my mailbox that I want to share with you.

If you're like me and you love to knit, and if, like me, you like to give the gift of warmth, you'll want to check out Red Heart's 31 Days of Giving calendar. Visit their web site to download the calendar. The movement continues until the 31st of July, so there's still plenty of time to contribute. There are some great ideas here for knit items and information on who needs them.

Even if you're not a knitter or crocheter, there are great ideas here for you too! Pay it forward by sending along blankets or other items you no longer need or make a much needed cash donation.

To those who have recently made my day with Random Acts of Kindness, thank-you! I'm having a fun day paying your generosities forward!

All the best to you today, my friends!

Monday, July 11, 2011

Once Upon A Time Read-a-Thon:
at Cookie's Book Club

I am participating (ish - time is a factor) in the Once Upon a Read-a-Thon reading challenge. It's definitely going to be a challenge as I've got both of my 'boys' (BIG and small) home with me for two of the three days and plenty else to do.

Once Upon a Read-a-Thon

There will be no posts here at Cookie's Chronicles for the next few days.

Friday, July 08, 2011

Children's Author Spotlight: Raffi

Today at Cookie's Book Club, I'm sharing a few of our favourite Raffi Songs to Read books.

I used to be afraid - very, very afraid - of Raffi, but I've come to love him! After all, he brings an immense amount of joy into my son's life, and so also into mine.

Click here to go to the spotlight at Cookie's Book Club!

Thursday, July 07, 2011

Life's Lessons: The First Edition

I have been feeling especially uninspired - tired, but also just enjoying the great outdoors with my son a whole lot and not really feeling like doing anything productive. I've experienced several Scarlett O'Hara moments this week: "I'll think about that tomorow!" It's partly the heat and partly the realization that summer is short and I want to be outside soaking up as much of it as I can!

Then one of my favourite blogging moms, Rach at Life with Baby Donut, decided to host a link up along with Sara at Life's Recipe, and I was once again inspired.

share our button

What I learned this week:

1. I learned (or was reminded of the fact that) a massage is like a little slice of heaven and always helps me sleep like a baby (one of those babies that sleeps for 6 hours overnight as soon as they come home from the hospital, not one of those babies - like mine - who sleep for only one hour at a time for five months).

2. I learned that story time at the zoo starts at 11:00 not 11:30 and is at the north end of the zoo, not the south end. Oops! Sorry M! Mama needed a nap that day.

3. I learned that my son can easily survive a 3 hour camp, and even enjoy himself... the whole time. Crisis averted!

4. I learned that if you eat before a late evening get together with friends, none of them will have eaten yet and vice versa. 

5. I learned that I can bike for hours and hours and still not really want to stop. What's that about?

6. I learned that hanging out with friends while the kids play on the playground equipment and someone feeds you hamburgers, hot dogs, ice cream, water and juice is not half bad!

7. Oh, and I learned that I have the kind of boobs (can I say "boobs" on the interweb?) that really hurt when they get squished in a mammogram machine. Happy news though - negative mammograms-2, cancer-0! Woot!

Have a great week everyone!

Sunday, July 03, 2011

Guest Post
Mama Teach Me:
Garden Friends

Today Bruna at Bees With Honey has invited me back to participate in her Mama Teach Us feature.

Mama Teach Us

Jack has an interest in bugs and gardening, so I decided to teach him about some of the beneficial critters in our garden. Click here to read about our adventures in the garden and to meet this guy:

Isn't he BEEautiful?

Happy Independence Day USA!

Tomorrow, July 4th is Independence Day in the United States and commemorates the country's adoption of the Declaration of Independence in 1776. 

To my American friends, thank-you for your support, thank-you for your friendship and thank-you for your spirit!

Saturday, July 02, 2011

Introducing our newest addition... Carl!

Apparently, we have a new resident. The other day, Jack and I had this seemingly benign conversation over lunch at a local restaurant:
Jack: Mom, there's a monster at our house right now.

Mom: Well, that's okay Jack because we're not there right now. Hey! I wonder if he's cleaning the house for us?

Jack: Is it dirty?

Mom: No, you're right, it's pretty clean right now. Maybe he's doing the laundry!

Jack: Yes, he's a nice monster. He does our laundry.
When we arrived home, monster was still at our house. Jack took monster to his room with him and they played together for an hour. Later, Jack told me that monster is the same age as Jack and just as tall. He doesn't have sharp nails so he doesn't make marks on the floor (I have no idea where this came from). Also, monster seems to like all the same things as Jack! Monster has been everywhere with us, and has his own place at the table now.


And just like that Jack has an imaginary friend. A monster. We think his name is Carl.

Apparently, this is totally normal and even beneficial.

So, I'm riding the wave.

Jack seems very happy with Carl, and that makes me happy too. It's about time there was someone else around here to play with besides mommy!!

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Are there imaginary friends in your home?