Merry Christmas

Well I definitely didn’t get around to completing as many Christmas related posts as I had anticipated. I didn’t share some toddler gift ideas, or gift ideas for your favourite hostesses! Things have been busy around here and I will share more on our projects in the new year.

This will be my last post before Christmas. We will be busy spending time with both of our families next week, so watch for the recap late next week. Next week is also my last full week off before going back to work (WHAT?!), and Maxton also starts daycare next Thursday (sniff).

Before I leave you, I am sure some of you will be attending some Holiday parties this weekend. Here are some quick and easy (and inexpensive) hostess gifts you can bring along with you! (Don’t be so quick to grab a bottle of wine to bring, just for the sake of bringing something – unless you know your hostess drinks wine, and what kind of wine he/she likes. Otherwise your wine will probably end up being a re-gift.)

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How great are these? The instructions to make these can be found on the Martha Stewart website. They are quick and easy, and make one dozen at a time.  You can personalize them with your own jars and personal message!

Peppermint Bark

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This is such a quick and easy recipe, and there are so many beautiful ways to package this, to personalize it. Your hostess can put it out for his/her guests to enjoy, or save it!

Homemade Jam (or Salsa etc.)

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Another fun and easy gift. Who doesn’t like jam? For those of you who spend days making your favourite jams in the summer after berry picking, make some extra and save it for Christmas. Your hostess will appreciate this on Christmas morning!

I hope you all have a wonderful and safe Christmas, and enjoy the time with your loved ones and those closest to you.

Merry Christmas!!!

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No Words

It’s been fairly quiet around here for the past few days. There was no Makeshift Monday post this week, thanks to my uncooperative internet. I decided I would blend that post with another one, later this week. Yesterday escaped me, and I needed time to build this post.

I’m sure you are all familiar with the tragedy that struck Newtown Connecticut, last Friday (December 14). It was a regular Friday for me, just playing with Maxton, getting his lunch ready. I received a text from a friend, asking if I had heard about the shooting at an elementary school in the U.S. I immediately turned on the news and could barely believe what I was seeing and hearing.

At first there was a lot of speculation as to what occurred. The media were confused, the public were confused, it even seemed as though the officers who were on the scene, were confused.

When I heard the confirmed death toll, 20 children, and 6 adults, I cried. I looked at my sweet little happy boy, and cried. I cried for the parents of those children, I cried for the families of those children, I cried for those children who are now angels looking down from above, and I cried for all the teachers and administrators, who put each and every childs’ life ahead of their own. I cried out of thanks, that my baby boy was safe in my arms, that afternoon.

I cannot put into words the sadness I feel for this senseless act. My heart goes out to all the families of those 26 victims, who went to school/work that morning, but never made it home that evening.

God bless those teachers/administrators who did everything they could to keep the children in their classrooms safe – some died doing so. To those sweet little six and seven-year olds, who were taken much too young, may you find peace. To the adults, who died protecting those children, may you also find peace.

Hallelujah – The Voice

My Little Yogi

I practiced prenatal yoga for most of my pregnancy with Maxton. I always felt more connected to him during each practice, and loved that special time we shared together. I even brought Steve along to participate in some prenatal-partner yoga.

200252_538491833163_6251383_nOnce Maxton was born, I signed us up for Mom & Baby Yoga Bootcamp. It was a great bonding experience with Maxton, and helped to get me back into shape. I practiced until Maxton started crawling.

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Now here he is, at 15.5 months-old, practicing some gentle yoga at home – starting with downward-facing dog.

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Namaste.

Makeshift Monday

Happy Monday! I hope you all had a great weekend, and got some Christmas shopping/wrapping done! Only two more weekends left!

In the spirit of the season, I thought I would share a recipe for Gingerbread Cookies, from the Canadian Living website.

Ingredients

  • 3/4 cup unsalted butter , softened
  • 3/4 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 3/4 cup cooking molasses
  • 4-1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 tsp ground ginger
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 3/4 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp ground cloves
  • 1/4 tsp baking powder
  • 1 pinch salt

Preparation

In large bowl, beat butter with brown sugar until fluffy; beat in egg and molasses.In separate bowl, whisk together flour, ginger, cinnamon, baking soda, cloves, baking powder and salt; stir into molasses mixture in 3 additions, blending with hands and kneading to combine.

Divide into thirds; shape into flat rectangles. Wrap each and refrigerate until firm, about 2 hours.

Between parchment paper, roll out each rectangle to 1/4-inch (5 mm) thickness. With floured 5-inch (12 cm) gingerbread person, snowflake or other shape of cutter, cut out cookies. Arrange, 1 inch (2.5 cm) apart, on parchment paper–lined baking sheets.

Bake in 325°F (160°C) oven until firm to the touch and light golden on edges, about 15 minutes. Transfer to racks; let cool completely.You can leave them plain, or pipe some icing with sprinkles or candy!

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Mmmm – enjoy!

Source : Canadian Living Holiday Cookbook: Fall 2010

Holiday Gift Ideas

We all have “that person” who we dread shopping for. The person who “has everything” or “doesn’t need anything” or “doesn’t know” what they want. Sometimes I have things in mind for those I am shopping for, other times I cross my fingers that the perfect gift will jump out at me. I’m sure I’m not alone in this.

Here are a few gift ideas I have come across, that have caught my eye.

Wooden Alarm Clock (iPhone not included)

Indigo $39.99

708389990812I first saw this item on The Marilyn Denis Show, and thought it was pretty cool. Display the time and an alarm on your iPhone or iPod Touch by running a flip clock application. You can even pull your charger through the dock to keep your phone/touch charged through the night. Modern and classic!

Retro Modern Owl Bookends

Indigo $39.99

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I love these! They are great for a home office or a child’s bedroom. I might snag these for Maxton’s room down the road.

Scented Candles

Bath & Body Works $22.50

pBBW1-13561280v275Scented candles are a great gift. Don’t feel as though you have to get a holiday scent, you can choose something they will enjoy year-round. Bath & Body Works is great for a wide variety of scented candles, both large and small, and they often have promotions (2 for $30 etc.).

Gift Cards

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Don’t be afraid to give gift cards. They are much more personal than cash in an envelope, especially if it’s for a place you know they love. Perfect for stocking stuffers or under the tree!

6-Piece Spa Set – White

Bed Bath & Beyond $49.99

24548240579146PThis is a great gift for a “spa at home” experience. It may not be as plush and luxurious as some of the spa kits out there, but it’s a great deal. It includes a robe, loofah sponge, exfoliating spa gloves, eye mask, cozy socks and a reusable storage tray.

I hope this at least somewhat helped some of you out there. Check back next week for some gift ideas for toddlers and hostesses.

Have a great weekend! (Remember only three more weekends left before Christmas – yikes!)