Last month was Rainbow’s 1st birthday. To celebrate, Hubby and I organized a Minion-themed birthday. Aside from the Minion watermelon, cupcakes and party favours, I wanted something else that said “minion”. Of course, I went on Pinterest, and found a recipe for candied popcorn. I tweaked it a little bit with flavours and colours to match the yellow and purple minion theme. Here is the recipe below;
- 12 cups of popped popcorn, divided into 6 cup portions.
- Grape and Lemon jello (not sugar free)
- 1 Cup White Sugar (2-1/2 cup portions)
- 8 tbsp Butter (2-4 tbsp portions)
- 6 tbsp Liquid Clear Corn Syrup (2-3 tbsp portions)
- Food Colouring
- Parchment Paper
- Clear Cello Bags
- Blue & Black Ribbon
- Googly eyes
- Over medium low heat, boil sugar, grape jello, 3 tbsp corn syrup, and 4 tbsp butter. When mixed, add a few drops of purple food colouring and 6 cups of popcorn. I added the popcorn in the pot while the heat is still on as I found the liquid mixture tosses better with the popcorn.
- Transfer the mixture onto a cookie sheet covered in parchment paper and spread into a thin layer. Bake at 250 F for 15 minutes.
- Repeat with the lemon jello.
- Once the popcorn is cooled, break into smaller pieces.
- Glue googly eyes onto empty cello bag, alternating from 1 to 2 eyes, depending on the type of minions you are creating.
- Fill 10 cello bags with the lemon candied popcorn and 10 with the grape.
- Close the bags with the blue ribbon on the lemon popcorn and the black ribbon on the grape.
- Serve and enjoy!
To The Beach
We are going to the beach,
to the Beach, to the beach,
We are going to the beach,
in our bathing suits.
We will find there rocks and shells,
Rocks and shells, Rocks and Shells.
We will find there rocks and shells,
to gather by the water.
We will build a sand castle,
Sand castle, sand castle,
we will build a sand castle,
with bridges and a tower.
We will have a picnic too,
picnic too, picnic too,
We will have a picnic too,
With Sandwiches and oranges.
Home we head with Sunburned Cheeks,
Sunburned Cheeks, Sunburned Cheeks,
Home we head with sunburned Cheeks,
and treasures from our visit.
Sung to “London Bridge”
Song from PreschoolEducation.com
I often think of my childhood and all the things my parents did and the memories that I will keep for the rest of my life. I want to create memories for my children so when they are older, they will look back and have fond memories of growing up too.
When I was young, my dad always took me fencing. Not the fencing with the sword and the white suits and face masks, the ‘build a fence’ fencing. It would always be on a summer weekend, hot and sticky from the humidity. I would have to wear jeans with closed toe shoes for protection from sticks, wire and logs. The entire time I would be helping him, he would quiz me on which pickets go where, what their names were and in what order they go in. I would sort logs based on size, lug full gas containers from the truck to the fence, and pass him the chainsaw, wire and axes whenever he needed them. I was working and being quizzed the entire time but I can say that it was one of my favourite things to do with my Dad. Last summer when I went home to visit for a few weeks, I eagerly volunteered to help him build fence. The Princess even helped. Dad said he’s never been asked so many questions in his life!
I may not build fence with the Princess and the Rainbow, but Hubby and I try to make special memories with them, things that they will remember forever. Last year the Princess discovered money. She hasn’t mastered the full concept of it but she knew enough that it was something you needed. So I made her a deal, any spare change she found around our home, she could have and put in her piggy bank. I was going to wait until Hubby got home to tell him but the Princess beat me to the punch.
“Daddy, Mama said I could keep the money I find on the floor,” she squealed.
“Didn’t you know that leprechauns come at midnight and leave that money around the house for you to find?” The Princess’ eyes lit up.
“Oh Daddy, we are waking up tonight to find them,” and she starting jumping with utter excitement.
“Yea we will do that,” he said.
Now I am all for telling children about Santa, the Easter Bunny and the Tooth-fairy to add some whimsy to children’s lives but Hubby makes up fantastical stories and it makes me think ‘why did you say that?’ Once he told her we found her in a box and she told everyone!
Later on in the evening, the Princess would not stop reminding Hubby that come midnight, they were hunting for gold coins and leprechauns. He nodded but you could tell that he didn’t think she was serious.
“You know you are going to have to get up with her and find these coins right,” I said.
“What? She’ll be asleep and forget all about it,” he shrugged.
“You cannot tell her that little green men from a magical place come in the middle of the night and deposit money throughout our home and you will hunt for them with her and then not do it,” I argued.
“Ah crap. I don’t want to get up in the middle of the night.”
“Well perhaps you should have thought of that before you told her.”
After she went to bed, I went to local Bulk Barn and purchased chocolate coins for him to lay around the house for them to find. Sure enough at midnight, the Princess was up and ready to search for money. Hubby did this with her 2 nights in a row. Despite the late night, the Princess was so happy and excited that she had leprechauns that visited her home and left her coins.
Hubby is always doing something ‘magical’ for the Princess. If it isn’t buying ‘magical’ rocks from eBay or pulling Kinderegg’s from her ears, he’s always been able to add a little magic to her world and I am quite grateful for that.
It’s my turn for a little magic. Last week the Princess got an intestinal tract infection from a class trip to a farm and was the sickest I have ever seen her. As a result, she is still isn’t her usual self. So to lift her spirits, I have written a letter from Tinkerbell and I will be mailing it tomorrow. I know she will get a huge kick out of receiving mail for one and that it is from one of her favourite characters will be the cherry on top. I am hoping it will turn into a regular thing and I will keep all the letters as a keepsake so I can show her when she’s older.
My biggest wish for the Princess and eventually the Rainbow is that they will look back and now that Hubby and I really tried to make their worlds brighter and happier and how truly loved they really are. I know that even as my Dad worked and quizzed me, that those memories of working on the fences are memories I look back on with fondness. And while I may not be able to build a fence myself, I still know the names of the rails.
Image c/o nerdylifeofmine.com
I was running errands this morning and in the store I came across a section of clearance Easter craft items. For only $5, I was able to create the Angry Birds Easter Egg Game! I am positive that my daughter will love this game as she LOVES Angry Birds and it will be the only time I willingly allow eggs to be tossed around our home.
- Plastic Filler Eggs
- Angry Birds Eggcessory Stickers
- Small Pebbles (or something to weigh down the “birds”)
- Building Blocks or Lego
- Decorate the plastic filler eggs with the Angry Bird stickers to make yourself a batch of pigs and birds.
- Fill you “birds” with something to weigh them down such as pebbles, or marbles and tape the seal shut. You don’t want them to be rock solid, but heavy enough to take down the blocks.
- Build a tower and place your pigs strategically.
- Toss your Angry Birds and have fun!
*I purchased the filler eggs and stickers from Shopper’s Drugmart!
The Easter Bunny’s feet,
Go hop, hop, hop.
While his big pink ears,
Go flop, flop, flop.
He is rushing on his way,
To bring our eggs on Easter Day.
With a hop, flop, hop, flop, hop.
Poem from rhymeslyrics.blogspot.ca
In an attempt to save money on groceries, I have been baking snacks for my daughter’s school lunches. And what better place to find delicious, healthy and equally cool looking snack ideas than Pinterest, the social media site where 12 million visitors spend on average 1 hour and 17 minutes of their life pinning, liking and creating boards of stuff1. Oh Pinterest, you seductive mistress you. By simply seeing the “pin it” button, you gave me the ill-fated notion that I, torontomama, could be a Domestic Goddess. For shame!
I consider myself to be a capable cook. That said I lack the necessary skill when it comes to baking. Only the pull of Pinterest could have brought this idea of baking school snacks to fruition. My first 3 recipes went off without a hitch. With those recipes under my belt, it came time to make Strawberry Cupcakes with Fresh Strawberry Icing, courtesy of Spendwithpennies.com. Doesn’t the name alone make you salivate? Well if the name doesn’t, the picture will. I wanted to surprise my daughter with these delicious gems after school and have a tea party in her room. What fun.
First came the icing. It needed to be chilled overnight and it turned out perfect. I would make the cupcakes themselves the next day so they would be fresh for the party. The original recipe called for boxed cake mix, but being the Domestic Goddess I thought myself to be, I made the cake from scratch. I purchased cake flour instead of using all-purpose flour like the recipe called for and did no research on its differences. According to Pinterest, this is what they were supposed to look like.
And this is how it turned out. EPIC FAIL.
I pulled my cupcakes out of the oven, dry and sunken in the middle. Upon further research online, I came to find out that my cupcakes were both overcooked and over leavened and nasty as hell. My daughter eats with her eyes and seeing that they were bright pink, in her mind they were just fine and the tea party would have to go on as planned. I told her outright that I had made a mistake and I didn’t think they were that tasty. She was having none of it. We sat down at her Lego table, disguised as a banquet table at a ball and ate my Pinterest Fail cupcakes while sipping hot chocolate. Despite her saying they were ‘ok’; she ate less than half of one.
Hubby came home after work and bluntly asked “What happened?” Pinterest happened. With their pretty pictures and step by step instructions, I was lulled into the assumption that I could be magically transformed into a baking aficionado. They lied. Out of 15 cupcakes, 1 was eaten and I have approximately 8 cups of delicious strawberry icing sitting in my fridge with no cupcakes to ice with it. Cue the spoon and kiss the diet goodbye.
In the last 9 months since my son was born I have had difficulty finding the balance between being a Mom and all the other things I have to do. I will admit that writing frequently on this blog has taken somewhat of a backseat and so has my laundry, eating regularly, showering, my mental sanity, the list could go on forever. In my quest to be the ultimate Stepford Wife/Mommy/Maid/Chef Extraordinaire, life has served me a heaping slice of humble pie. I guess that’s a good thing since I haven’t eaten breakfast in 3 months.
The Princess gave me a false idea that I was some sort of parenting aficionado. She nursed on a schedule, slept through the night, had 3-2 hour naps a day, and was content doing her own thing. I could clean my house, do laundry, shower, eat, have dinner on the table by the time Hubby got home, I could do it all. Back then I thought myself as the parenting superhero, full cape and costume. Oh why I yes I will gladly accept that parent of the year award. Turns out, that had NOTHING, NADA, ZIP to do with me. It was her personality as a baby. Granted it has changed now, but back then, she was an EASY baby.
Now my son, whom my family doctor asserts has been ‘touched by fire’, is NOTHING like my daughter. Complete opposite in fact. At 9 months, he is still not sleeping through the night and must be carried at all times when he is not climbing onto, under and into whatever his surprisingly nimble little body will allow. He is also insanely attached to me. It’s not all bad. I mean who doesn’t love snuggles by their very own cuddle monster? But when I am attempting to make dinner and I have a fiery ginger screaming himself apoplectic to the point in which he begins to gag and vomit, it becomes stressful. Hubby will often hold him and stand in the kitchen just so he can see me and have his needs of being held fulfilled.
In the beginning of my maternity leave, Hubby would often come home and ask ‘What did you do today?’ Cue the hand waving, heading bobbing ‘oh no you did not just ask me what I did today!’ Sleepless nights, up-all-days, 2 children needing every ounce of attention I could muster had set me on the precarious edge of sensitivity and insanity. And poor Hubby was catching it in all directions. A few months later I sat him down and made a very frank confession. That Mom that had the spotless house and dinner on the table with baby #1 is gone and likely will not return for a few more years. Not until my baby boy is sleeping regularly, more independent and I have caught up on some sleep. I couldn’t be that Mom without something, such as my children being left behind. I love a spotless house, but never at the expense of my children’s happiness and well-being. He would just have to settle for a tidy house that gets cleaned thoroughly on the weekend, dinner an hour after he gets home and a slightly crazier wife.
Life isn’t so bad though. I am still searching for that elusive thing called balance, but I get done what I can in a day and stop trying to beat myself up for what didn’t. I may be a raggedy mess of a Mom, but I am doing my very best that I can and I am ok with that. As I lay here, typing this post on my phone, laying next to my baby boy who is getting some cursed molars, I know that this too shall pass.