Friday, September 21, 2012

11 Months and No Teeth

Today (sorry, yesterday) my little Grace turned 11 months old!

And she still has the cutest little toothless grin.

This month her personality is completely blooming.
She is a lover of shoes, purses, painted nails, and any jewelery.
She also loves music and was enthralled when her aunt demonstrated her skills at the Tenor Sax.

She also has a wicked scream that comes out when she feels we aren't paying enough attention to her.
AND she's mastered the art of crying with her lower lip to get her way.... like if I use the word "no."
What a cute little manipulator.... :P

11 Month Milestones include:

-Standing on her own, without support, and without pulling herself up. She'll even "sit" in squat position and then stand. I'm really impressed, even though I'm fearful of the walking stage. Monkey walked when he was 11 months, and I'm in no hurry for Grace to move around faster than she already is.

-Crawling like she's in a race. She learned to crawl over a month ago, but she keeps getting faster! She crawls with one knee down, and one foot down. And when the bathroom door is open, she'll get there in seconds, no matter where she was previously.

-Climbing the stairs!! One day I was downstairs playing with Monkey and Grace, and I guess I was paying more attention to him than her, so she made a break for the stairs. She was on the first step before I could stop her, so I followed her and she climbed both sets of stairs by herself! She's getting faster at the stairs too, although I definitely stay close behind her because she'll stop mid-climb and turn around or sit down... Silly girl.

-Eating like a horse! She even out-eats her brother some meals! She loves pasta, shrimp, cold cooked potatoes (eeeeww...) crusts of bread, and she even devoured the red pepper soup I made the other night. I love that she's so independent with eating. I've got to help both kids eat supper (Monkey sucks at using utensils) and I would like to eat food myself, so it's nice that I don't need to spoon feed Grace every single bite.

-Using a sippy cup and a bottle!! I know that some babies take a bottle from birth, but this girl has refused. I don't mind, because I'm still nursing her, but I had her with a babysitter for S3 days (job interviews... they didn't pan out, so I'm still at home!) and she wouldn't eat from a bottle on the first day, the second day she ate a bit, and the third day she was finally using the bottle. It gave me some independence that I've been craving, and made me feel like I can actually do things now outside the home.

I haven't taken miss Grace to the doctor lately, so I don't know what she weighs, but she's in 12 month sleepers and some 12 month clothes, so I know she's growing normally. She's a beautiful, happy, friendly little girl, and she completely fits her name. She is a wonderful example of the grace God has for us.

I can't believe next month she'll be ONE!! I guess I better start planning a birthday celebration!


September Randoms

So, Monkey pulled his sister out of her crib today. He brought her all the way across the basement and onto his bed.

Without dropping her.

And without her crying.

And most importantly, without me even knowing he'd done it.



I asked Monkey what he would like for his birthday (which is coming up next month).

Monkey: Ummm... a plastic spoon.

Me: ? Are you sure?

Monkey: Yes. Not two, just one. And (sister) can have one for her birthday.


Umm so I guess I've got this birthday thing covered. Shopping: DONE.

Speaking of birthdays, I've got some cake decorating books, and Monkey's been going through them telling me which cakes I can make for myself, for Grandpa, for him, for his sister.... He's got quite a list of cakes that I'll be making. I guess I should start working now!


Monkey started school this month, and he loves it.
He goes full day, every day. He's got a teacher in the morning, and an ECE in the afternoon, and both of them are wonderful.
Today he came home with a song to sing us about counting.

"One, two, three, four, five
I caught a butterfly.
Six, seven, eight, nine, ten
I let him go again.
Guess what he said to me,
He said he wanted to be free
Which way did he go?
He flew to Mexico."

I'm really glad that he's got one with numbers because his counting goes something like:

He's still forgetting 10 every time, but hopefully he'll get that one soon...

Happy September everyone! Sorry I've been gone so long!


Friday, June 1, 2012

I took the pictures off the wall

How did I get to the point where I'm only 20 days away from leaving such an amazing town?
I've still got so much I want to do here! So many things I haven't explored or exposed my kids to...

I've still got restaurants to visit (Chez Piggy and The Works specifically) or to revisit (Wooden Heads, Mia Gelato...)

I've got activities to do (glow in the dark mini putt, go carting)

I've got softball games to play, water parks to take the kids to, strawberry patches to explore, picnics, beaches, walking trails....

I'm not done yet.

But I've got less than 3 weeks to pack as much Kingston into me as I can before we pack our lives into a 14 foot truck and drive away.

I cried for the first time tonight because I finally realized that I really will be saying goodbye.

There are babies who I haven't met yet who will show up here this summer.

There are friends who I haven't hugged enough.

There are so many memories that I wanted to make.

But since I took the pictures off the wall, I know that no matter how many days I've got left here, there will always be more that I want to do. And I guess that means I'll have to visit.


Friday, May 18, 2012

Countdown to a New Life!

Six weeks from now I'll be a single mom for 6 months.

It's not permanent, and it's not sad news, rather this news is exciting, as it means my husband has come to a point in his career where he actually has a career!

Let me explain:
Last August, my husband began his application to join the Canadian military. Paperwork, hurdles, clearance forms, security checks, and interviews ensued.... and last week Monday we received a phone call which resulted in a job offer and the news that my husband will be starting basic training in less than 6 weeks!

My mom asked how I was feeling (excited, scared, happy, sad?) and I just said yes. I'm feeling all those things and more, so much so that I don't really think this next stage of life will make sense until we're in the midst of it.

There are many life changes that are going to happen in the next few months.
   -I'll be an army wife, and my hubby will be the 4th man in my family in the army.
   -We'll be packing up and leaving to stay with my parents so I'll have help taking care of the kids
   -I will have to find a new school for Monkey to attend, as he'll be starting JK in the fall

This is a big change, and I'm sure there will be hard times, tears, and plenty of fears... but I also know that it's a blessing, and there will be joys and lots of great things will come.

It's amazing what can happen in only 6 week!


Monday, February 13, 2012

Who Am I (link up)

Today I'm taking part in a linkup from Neely at A Complete Waste of Makeup

Hi! My name is Angela.

I am mother to two amazing little ones. Monkey (my son) is three years old and keeps me on my toes. Grace (my daughter) is 3 months old and she keeps the peace in my life

I've been married for 4.5 years to an amazing man named Ben

I started writing Adventures of Chef Mom to talk about making my way through culinary school while trying to take care of my son. I graduated in May of 2011 (4.5 months pregnant with my daughter) so I wasn't able to take over the culinary world, but I hope to work from home making other peoples lives sweeter one dessert at a time...

I write about anything and everything that has to do with our lives (food, family, holidays, crafting, funny things the kids do or say)

I adore baking anything sweet, especially cupcakes and pastries (in culinary school, one of my teachers called me the pastry queen)

I'm blessed to be able to stay home with my two little ones while my Hubby works. We live in Ontario (Canada) between Toronto and Ottawa.

I love NCIS, Bones, and the Biggest Loser

I love Earl Grey tea, cottage cheese, and homemade pizza.

I love road trips, camping, and experiencing the world by bicycle. We've got 2 kids bike seats, so this summer we'll be able to take both kids with us.

I love singing, playing piano, and watching silly movies like Robin Hood Men in Tights.

I love learning about different countries and travelling. The first 8 months of marriage, Hubby and I lived in Sweden, so that country has a huge soft spot in my heart.

I am a big fan of coupons, free stuff, and clearance sales at Old Navy.

I joined Weight Watchers back in December (right before Christmas. Am I crazy?) and so far I've lost 10 lbs. I've got a ways to go until I'm back to pre-baby #1 weight, but I'll get there.

Thanks for letting me share about me!


Saturday, February 11, 2012

Last-Minute Valentines

This year I got an early start on Valentines Day projects. I even had Monkey make cards to send to friends and family (however I forgot to mail them last week, so they will be late).

The one downside to being done early is that I've seen so many other cute projects that I want to do all of them and I've already made our Valentines... but really, that's not a bad thing.

Anyways, the projects we did complete are actually from my post last year about Valentines day.

Heart-Shaped Crayons

I tried to make each crayon out of its own colour group instead of mixing all the colours together.

I used a silicon heart shaped muffin pan from the dollar store because I didn't want to ruin one of my good muffin tins.

I broke the pieces into about 1/4 inch pieces and tried to mix the different tones evenly between the muffin cups.

I "baked" the broken pieces in the oven for about 5-7 minutes at 300 degrees C. If you bake them longer or shake the pan too much when you take it out, all the colours tend to mix together and you don't have different tones/colours, you just have one kind of muddy colour.

Then I let them cool. You can tell they're ready to be removed when the crayon has come away from the side of the silicon pan (or if you are using mini aluminum tart shells, when it has separated from the tin).

Sorry that there is no picture of the final product with the cardstock. They are pasted with double-sided tape to cardstock reading "You Colour My World!"

These were simple, and I've still got enough broken and used crayons to do about a decade more Valentines for the entire class...

The biggest time consuming part was peeling the paper from the crayons. I found that the no name crayons were much easier to peel than the Crayola brand, and since I did about 24 of these, I had quite a bit of crayon under my nails after this.

I would also recommend getting 2 muffin tins so you can do 12 crayons at a time, because I'm not big on patience, and I had a hard time stopping myself from taking the crayons out of the tin before they were ready...

Muffin Tin: $1 at the dollar store
Crayons: already on hand
Cardstock: already on hand

The next Valentines Day craft I did was also low cost and quick to put together.

Chocolate Roses

Bag of Kisses
: $2.99 for a small package that will make about 18 roses (I would recommend red, pink, or silver because the cellophane is transparent)
Stem for the flowers: $1 for 10
Coloured cellophane: I had some on hand (the stuff used to wrap gift baskets)
Florists tape: $4 for 3 rolls. I made about 30 roses and only used 1 roll.

I started by cutting squares of the cellophane. I didn't have an exact measure, If you want one, I'd go with about 4 inches square. You want the square to be long enough to cover the kisses and still be able to attach more to the pencil. Extra is fine, you'll be covering it with the tape.

Next, tape the kisses together with double sided tape (or just hold them together like I did). You want to make sure that both kisses are held together and that the cellophane is holding them tightly in place if they aren't taped together.

Next, take the pencil, and place it under the bottom kiss. This part is the most particular. I find that if I had a third hand, it would be very useful for this step.

Next, you need to start wrapping the tape around both the pencil and the cellophane. Stretch the tape as you wrap it tightly so that it will stick to itself. Wrap it a few extra times around at the beginning to make sure the kisses are secure.

Keep stretching and overlapping the tape as you tape down the whole pencil. If you wrap at an angle, it will naturally overlap and stay smooth.

When you get to the tip of the pencil, overlap the tape a few times and pinch it tightly to keep it secure.

There you are! Beautiful roses that are a perfect gift for students (if you're a teacher), for classmates, or just for fun!

Happy Valentines Day, and happy crafting!


Monday, January 23, 2012

For my best sister.

Happy Birthday Emily!
I can't believe it's been 15 years already since I finally had a sister. I am so thankful that you're here and that I'm not alone among all the boys. You have matured into a beautiful, sensitive, and thoughtful woman.
I'm glad for your sense of humor, your personal style, your modesty, and your faith. I know you will do great things.

This weekend we celebrated 15 years of YOU, and I got to make dinner and cupcakes.

Listening to the giggling of 5 teenage girls made me smile and brought me back to my high school years. I'm so glad you are close with your classmates, and I hope you can all grow together in faith and in strong, encouraging friendship.

Emily, you are so loved, and I hope that this year is filled with amazing blessing.

Love you.