30 September 2010

Last Year

Tomorrow is October 1, which means I have to start thinking about Halloween.  As a mommy who doesn't love Halloween, I've done pretty good in the past, but this year a lack of money and lack of imagination is plaguing me!

If I could find a me-sized hot dog costume, I know what I'd be for Halloween. As it was, this was quite possibly the best costume EVER for a 4 month old baby! What's that you see in the leaves? Why, that's Eli, as a hot dog.

When Eli was one, we dressed up as the characters from Robert Munsch's Paper Bag Princess, one of my favourite books of all time.  Best ending ever:  '"Your clothes are really pretty, and your hair is very neat. You look like a real prince, but you are a bum." And they don’t get married after all.'
 Poor Jared had to be Ronald the Bum, and Eli wasn't a very ferocious dragon, but so, so cute!

Last year, naturally, the boys dressed up as Buzz and Woody.  Eli would do it again this year if the costume still fit.  Look at Silas! He was only 6 weeks old.

So, that leaves me where?  Charlie Brown and Snoopy?  Animals? Firefighters? Cowboys? Really, the possibilities are endless. The funny thing is, Halloween is on a Sunday, so we won't even be going Trick-or-treating, but for some reason this seems like an important thing to do as a mother.  Any brilliant ideas, please send them my way!

29 September 2010


The very best thing about living in Calgary is not the weather, it's not the room we live in, it's not even the fact that my mother does all the grocery shopping... it's that Eli and Silas get to play so much with their cousins.  Okay, let's be honest, at this point Eli does most of the playing, but I'm sure Silas will catch up soon. I absolutely love it! While we tend to spend a lot of time with my sister Alice's kids, this week has been chalk full of all the other cousins too.

First of all, on Sunday afternoon we had a big Wiebe birthday party for all the babies born in September/October. I tried to go unnoticed, but I got sneaked in somehow, and Silas and I were both spoiled, thoroughly.

 Jolayne whipped out her mad cake making skills with this fabulous train cake.

 Singing to everyone.  Silas was remotely interested!

Silas opening gifts. I'm not sure how Eli survived all by himself on his first birthday?

After the festivities at the Wiebe's, we spent Monday night celebrating Uncle Aaron's birthday, gorging ourselves on pancakes.

On Tuesday morning my mom, as is tradition, took Eli to Build-A-Bear for his third birthday (3 1/2 months late). I'm not kidding, he was so stinking excited!  They left early, went straight to Build-A-Bear to buy his bear, then went on the Carousel and out for lunch.  I just wish I could have followed them around with a camera... but alas.  When they got home a few hours later Shann had brought her youngest kids over, Andy came too, they all brought their own Bears, and we had a real party.

Eli running up the stairs to show me his "Storm Trooper Bear." Apparently he saw it on display and wouldn't be talked into anything else. I guess it's a guy thing.   Mom bought Star Wars outfits for all the kids' bears. It was a dream come true!
If you can't tell, that's Darth Vader, Storm Trooper, Princess Leia and Hans Solo. Rad.

Then, tonight, we went with Matt, Shannon and their five kids, and Alice, Aaron and their four to Edworthy Park for a wiener roast.  The kids played hard and got dirty, just what kids should do.
 Jared asked Eli if he ate the dirt. He said, "No" as he spit some out.

 The closest thing to a smile that I got out of Marlie in the two days I spent with her.
 I love fall!
 Here they all are!  Silas was not a happy camper.
 Cute little cow diaper, with the ears sticking out and all!
My niece Marigold, who's about the sweetest thing!
 And my favourite picture of all: Silas started walking this week, here he is with his daddy, and Woody. Love, love, love this picture. 

27 September 2010

Going on a leaf hunt, I'm not afriaid...

The good weather seems to be holding out here in Alberta this week, and so to enjoy it we walked to and from church yesterday. Despite being in high heels and nylons, it was thoroughly enjoyable! As we walked we pointed out to Eli all the different colors of leaves, and decided to go on a leaf hunt, collecting as many different colours and shapes as we could. By the time we got home, we had a real bounty!

There's even a flower, and a single pine needle in there!

After we laid out all our leaves, we searched through our stash of felt and matched the leaves with the different colours.  Eli's job was to arrange the leaves.

Then we took those felt pieces and traced circles on them.  I cut them up, Eli passed them to me as I sewed them, and we came out with a beautiful garland inspired from the leaves we collected!  Eli was happy to be able to pick out which leaf went with which coloured circle.
 Okay, so there were no purple or blue leaves, but I thought the garland needed a little more colour, so I sneaked those in!

Check it out at:


25 September 2010

My Little Piece of Heaven

There is one place in the world that I would rather be than any other in autumn in Alberta.  It is a ridge in the foothills of the Rocky Mountains just outside of Bragg Creek, Alberta.  Today, for the first time in four years I rode my horse up to that ridge with my best friend and my baby sister, and I was in heaven.  I hope everyone else is managing to enjoy this beautiful weather and the amazing fall colors. Life is good. 

21 September 2010

If you want to destroy my sweater, Pull this thread as I walk away.

I started this sweater when Eli was a baby three and a half years ago, and finished it this morning.  And, luck would have it, it fits Silas perfectly. Since Silas's birthday went by basically uncelebrated, the sweater has become his present. Isn't the leaf pattern just perfect for fall?

This is the first clothing piece I have ever made, with seaming and everything.  I was a little scared of the seaming processes, but it wasn't bad at all. Actually, I have to admit, it was even enjoyable.  I love the act of creating something, and making a sweater definitely was fulfilling. Watching it come together at my fingertips was wonderful.  Is it silly that I feel that way? 
 I actually made two hats, because the first one was a little small.  Maybe a future giveaway!
Eli didn't like NOT being the centre of attention, so he got in a shot.

18 September 2010

One Year

This year I have...

...had my sweet little VBAC baby, Silas.
...tandem nursed for a whole year.
...left our beloved Michigan.
...lived in Spokane for 4 months.
...stopped watching movies with Eli and Silas and started doing more activities with them
...watched Jared walk the stage, graduating from Law School.
...moved back home with my parents.
...enjoyed getting to know our families again.
...learned the art of patience as we wait for Jared to be able to get a job.

This year Silas has...

...been born, surprising his Mom and Dad with his stubborness and his hair.
...nursed like a champ right off the bat.
...started sitting at 4 months.
...traveled Canada and the US like nobody's business.
...rolled over and started crawling the same week, at 8 months.
...grown his hair out, like Sampson.
...woken up every 2 hours to nurse, all night long, almost every night!
...loved to swim.
...taken his first step, 1 week shy of a year.
...charmed the world with a beautiful 6 tooth grin.
...decided that his big brother Eli is about the coolest thing in the world, and would rather play with him than almost anything else in the world. 

It's been a wild ride, but I can't even tell you how much more I love my baby Si every single day.  He is such a blessing, and I can't wait for what's to come. 

Happy birthday my sweet Silas, I love you so much!

13 September 2010

Thrifty Plight for a Bowling Night

Monday night = Family Home Evening.  Family Home Evening = finding something fun to do together whilst learning about the gospel.  This week the fun beat out the gospel learning: we went bowling. And, not just the immediate Wiebe clan, but the extended Evans troops.  Even Bumpa and Bumma tagged along!  Just hours before our adventure began, my little sis, and housemate, Phoebe, and I, decided it was absolutely necessary to go thrifting to find perfect bowling attire for the entire Wiebe family. So off we set to the nearest thrift, and search we did.

Polyester, unfortunately, we did not find.  I was disappointed, to say the least.  I envisioned our whole family decked out in matching vintage bowling shirts, Silas included.  That, I did not find.  But, Phoebe must be my thrifty good luck charm, because, while match we did not, we found some real gems.

So, decked out in our unwashed Goodwill finds, to the bowling alley we did roll.  Eli had the time of his life, bowling for mine, Jared`s and his turns.  I came in 12th.  Yes!!!

 Jared and I in matching cowboy shirts. 
 They actually had bowling shoes in Eli`s size.  Velcro and so adorable.
 Phoebe`s smashing outfit, not from the thrift, but from Mother`s closet.
 Silas cried really hard when we wouldn`t let him go after his ball.
Because it comes into question occasionally, Silas's shirt subtly says, "I'm not a girl."
 Check out that sweater!!!

The scratchy, hot sweater, however fabulous, eventually came off and the game kicked up a notch.  This is Andy and Eli throwing two bowling balls down the alley. Still they only knocked down 2 pins!

09 September 2010


I live in a room. 
One room. 
One room with four people, and all I own. 
I often dream of a life which is no longer, where we lived in a big, beautiful, orange house, where we lived large off loans and we knew as soon as school was done we'd be rolling in the dough. 
Turns out the dough needs to be left to rise for a while. 
Living in a single room can get you down.

Last night I went to a meeting. A meeting with strangers. Strangers that had one thing in common.  And, for a few hours I realized that this place that I'm in right now might be different from where I came, but it can be wonderful too. I drove home and had that warm fuzzy feeling inside, which is such a nice feeling to feel, if you ask me.

I turned 30 this week, which, by the way, I got to much quicker than I thought I should.  I've become much more mature, since turning 30.  In my new found maturity I've decided that I would rather feel warm fuzzy feelings to most other feelings: like I said, it is such a nice feeling to feel.
What made the meeting I went to so wonderful?  It was a meeting of mothers who breastfeed.  A support group, if you will.  
 (Why in the world do breastfeeding mothers need a support group? Well, we're a minority, we are.  Only fourteen percent of women breastfeed to six months.  I never stop breastfeeding.) 
So, together we gather, to talk about things that are important.  Last night, I realized that I like being with women who feel the same way I do.  I felt accepted and loved.  

So, I'm going to do more things that make me feel that way.  I'm going to make this place my home.  I'm going to ride horses with friends.  I'm going to explore the city I grew up in with my family.  I'm going to help people.  I'm going to make myself busy. 
I'm going to spend less time in my room.

I think I'm going to like being 30.

07 September 2010

Photo Blocks

 One day Jared is going to have a job.  And, at that job he is probably going to have a desk.  On that desk he will have these wonderful little photo blocks, on which are pictures of his wonderful family!

How'd I do it?  I cut a 2x4 into three squares (tell me why are 2x4's actually 1 1/2" x 3 1/2"?) Then I sanded them really nicely and stained them with a dark cherry stain.  I printed the pictures and Mod Podged them on. You can see in the pictures that I didn't get the Mod Podge on very smooth, but I couldn't figure out how.
Jared loves them, I love them, and Eli loves them.  What more could I ask for?

06 September 2010

Birth on my Mind

No, I'm not pregnant.  Not even close.

A good friend of mine is, though.

This friend, who shall remain nameless for now, is going to have a VBAC.  She believes that her cesarean was the result of the typical cascade of interventions, starting with an unnecessary induction, an accidental water breakage, continuous monitoring, etc., etc., etc....

She wants a different experience this time, and is willing to fight for it.  She's going into it educated and empowered. She's a champ! 

Remember this post?  Five months later I'm still looking for the answers. I've read so many books I can't even count, and I've got lots of new ideas of how to handle my next birth. But, there's still so much to learn.

In the mean time, I've decided to put some of my knowledge into action, and hopefully to good use.  In November I am going to start training to become a certified Doula, a professional birth assistant.  I am so excited!

Studies show that when a doula attends a birth, labors are shorter with fewer complications, babies are healthier and they breastfeed more easily.  I plan on using a doula with my next birth, even though I will have midwives.

I want to be a doula because I want to help women be empowered by the birth experience, not scared by it.

Part of the certification is a requirement to attend three births, as a doula, for free.  Last summer I was blessed to attend the birth of my friends, Sierra and Jonathan Hocklander's baby, Evelyn.  It was absolutely amazing! It was her birth that actually made me consider becoming a doula.  My nameless, pregnant friend has asked me to be her doula.  I can't describe what an joy it is to be asked to be present at these moments. Honestly, I can think of no greater honour.

So, stay posted as I embark on this incredible journey. And hey, if you need a doula, I'm offering my services for free!

Embracing the Inevitable

Yesterday we got back from our last trip to the lake, our last foray into the dissipating summer. Today the majority of shorts get packed away, and the pants and sweaters come out of their storage boxes.  Despite Jared being away from us for the first half of the summer to write the hardest exam of his life, despite us having the least amount of money we've ever had, despite us living in one small room in my parent's basement, this has been the greatest summer we've ever had. There's something to be said about being unemployed and unhampered - not a whole lot, but something.

In Calgary, Summer is definitely over, and I am sad. I'm trying not to think about how nice it still is in Michigan.  So, I'm making a concerted effort to embrace the seasons (or lack thereof) of Calgary. One way to do this, is to craft a Autumn craft.
 The pictures a little fuzzy, but at night they glow with a LED candle inside.

Halloween isn't a holiday I generally invest a lot of crafty energy in, but I quite like the "BOO," too!

Check it out at:

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