Monthly Archives: November 2012

Tattle Tales: The Moral Compass of a 4 Year Old

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The Princess has been officially labelled “The sheriff” of her kindergarten class.  She stands behind her teacher at circle time and “scowls” at the children that are not listening to the teacher.  And everyday I receive a play-by-play of the events of the day.  I have a tattle tale.  At first I became slightly concerned by this behaviour, as frankly, no one really likes a tattle tale.   Then upon researching, I came to find out that developmentally, this is exactly what she is to be doing.  In a 4 year old’s social development, tattling on friends is just another normal, while irritating, stage that unfortunately lasts for about a year.

Children at this age are very aware of rules and don’t necessarily like it when other children do not follow them, so they tattle.  Sometimes they are being picked on or bullied, so they tattle.  What is a parent to do?  I have tried to explain that unless someone is getting hurt or is hurting her directly, the consequences of that behaviour is none of her concern.  I also have tried to teach her to try to solve these said issues without asking for an adult to intervene.   I understand that her tattling is her way of navigating her moral compass.  When someone else shoves, or curses or does something deemed “inappropriate” she is sure to let people know that it is “bad”.  I feel comforted at least that I know that she has a grasp of right and wrong, I just have to curb the tattling behaviour.

Did your children tattle and how did you change that behaviour?

Jack Frost

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JACK FROST

The door was shut, as doors should be,
Before you went to bed last night;
Yet Jack Frost has got in, you see,
And left your window silver white.

He must have waited till you slept;
And not a single word he spoke,
But pencilled o’er the panes and crept
Away again before you woke.

And now you cannot see the hills
Nor fields that stretch beyond the lane;
But there are fairer things than these
His fingers traced on every pane.

Rocks and castles towering high;
Hills and dales, and streams and fields;
And knights in armor riding by,
With nodding plumes and shining shields.

And here are little boats, and there
Big ships with sails spread to the breeze;
And yonder, palm trees waving fair
On islands set in silver seas,

And butterflies with gauzy wings;
And herds of cows and flocks of sheep;
And fruit and flowers and all the things
You see when you are sound asleep.

For, creeping softly underneath
The door when all the lights are out,
Jack Frost takes every breath you breathe,
And knows the things you think about.

He paints them on the window-pane
In fairy lines with frozen steam;
And when you wake you see again
The lovely things you saw in dream.

 

By Gabriel Seton c/o http://www.apples4theteacher.com/holidays/winter/poems-rhymes/jack-frost.html

Fun Things to do This Weekend in Toronto!

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Are you looking for some fun things to keep the children entertained this weekend?  Then look no further!

  • Baking at the Mackenzie House.  Come to the Mackenzie House at 82 Bong St to make some Victorian desserts on Dec 1st from 9 – 11:30.
  • Etobicoke Lakeshore Christmas Parade.  Come to Dwight Avenue & Lake Shore Blvd West for the 22nd Annual Christmas Parade.  On December 1st from 10 – 12 come see Santa!
  • Holiday Greeting Cards Family Workshop.   At the Todmorden Mills Heritage Museum and Arts Centre, families can come and build personalized holiday greeting cards on December 1st from 1 – 4.
  • Gingerbread Cookie Factory.  From 10 – 8 this weekend, the volunteers from Trillium Health Centre will be hosting their Gingerbread Cookie Factory at Sherway Gardens with all proceeds going to seniors health services.  Come decorate cookies with icing and sprinkles!
  • CP Holiday Train.  On December 1st, the CP Holiday Train will be coming to Toronto at 750 Runnymede Rd at 5:30.  This was personally one of my faves growing up! Cannot wait to bring the Princess.

Image c/o torontoist.com

Yummy Fudgy Brownies

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I was having one of those “feel like baking” kind of days when my friend recommended this recipe.  By far the best brownies I have ever had.

INGREDIENTS

  • 1/2 Cup of Butter
  • 1 Cup of White Sugar
  • 2 Eggs
  • 1 Tsp of Vanilla Extract
  • 1/3 Cup of Unsweetened Cocoa
  • 1/2 Cup of All-Purpose Flour
  • 1/4 Tsp of Baking Powder
  • 1/4 Tsp of Salt

DIRECTIONS

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C) and grease & flour 8 inch pan.
  2. Melt butter in a saucepan.  Remove from heat.
  3. Mix in sugar, eggs and vanilla extract.
  4. Beat in remaining ingredients.
  5. Spread batter in pan and bake for 25 – 30 minutes. Do not overcook.
  6. Enjoy!

6 Years!

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6 years ago, Hubby and I first started dating.  We had met on April Fool’s Day earlier in the year but hadn’t spoken again until his birthday.  We had met at a University party and a mutual friend had introduced us.  Now not to sound cliché and cheesy, but when I saw him, my heart literally did race like it had never raced before.  I knew that he was going to be mine. Hubby isn’t much of a talker, like at all, but over the course of the night, he went from sitting on the other side of the room and slowly made his way to me over the span of a couple of hours.  We hung out the remainder of the weekend and then it was time for him to go back home.  We never did exchange numbers and I ended up spending the rest of the summer thinking I had blown it.

Come October, that mutual friend and I were living in a town house going to school and it was Hubby’s birthday.  She had woken up early and came to my room and woke me up.

“It’s his birthday, wish him a happy birthday,” she said as she handed me the phone.  I took it and left my birthday message.

Within three days I had received a text thanking me for my message and that he thought about me all summer too.  We spoke everyday all day and he came up a month later.   We had gone out and then came back to my place.  Everyone else had gone to bed and we sat there talking.  I decided that it was time to ask.  Now I’ve never been one to beat around the bushes and this wasn’t about to be another one of those times.

“So what are we?” I asked bluntly.

“You’re my girlfriend and I’m your boyfriend,” he said matter-of-factly.  Thank goodness he is as blunt as I am. The rest is history.

So it has been 6 years from that short but to the point conversation and I’ve never been happier.  People always say that there is someone for everyone and thankfully I found mine.  While we have a lot of differences, we also have a lot in common and both have a determination to stick it out, thick or thin.  We’ve had some happy times, some sad times, bad times and good, but no matter what, we always come out on the other side together.  I couldn’t have asked for a better man!

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Christmas Tree Door Ornament

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With the holidays right around the corner, I took some time and crafted a door ornament.  I went to Michael’s with no craft idea in mind but it didn’t take long to see a few items that stood out and the ideas started flowing.

SUPPLIES

  • Mod podge
  • Brush
  • Stock card paper
  • Ribbon
  • Sequins
  • Coloured Bells
  • Poinsettia Buttons
  • Hot Glue Gun
  • White Glue
  • Pencil & scissors
  • Wooden Christmas Ornament (I used a tree)

DIRECTIONS

  1. Place card stock print side down and place the wooden Christmas ornament on top and trace.  Cut out the shape.
  2. Using the brush, mod podge the card stock, print side up, onto the ornament.  Let dry.
  3. While the mod podge is drying, start making the ribbon star.  Loop the ribbon and hot glue the centre.  Then creat more loops until you have a star, glueing the centre as you go around.  Glue a coloured bell to the centre as decoration.
  4. Once the mod podge is dry, glue the ribbon star to the top.  Now using the white glue, create the sequins garland.
  5. I found very cute Poinsettia buttons and simply cut off the back and glued them to the tree, acting as decorations.
  6. Glue the coloured buttons to the bottom to act as the tree trunk.
  7. Feel free to use different card stock, colours and ornaments, make this your own!  Enjoy.

Christmas Tree Door Ornament

Egg White & Lemon Juice Face Mask

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I went and had my eyebrows waxed earlier this week and while putting lotion on my skin, the technician pointed out that I was in desperate need of a facial.  Possibly the weather is wreaking havoc on my skin, but it is very dry and blotchy.  Trips to the spa are lovely don’t get me wrong, but when I can make my own facial at home that is just as effective, I do.  This mask has only 2 ingredients and is easy to make.  It helps tighten the pores and even out the skin tone.

INGREDIENTS

  1. 1 Egg White
  2. 3 Tbsp of Lemon Juice

DIRECTIONS

  • Combine the egg white and lemon juice in a bowl.
  • Whisk until frothy for approximately 3 minutes.
  • Rub on your clean skin in a circular motion but stay away from the eyes and mouth.
  • Leave for 30 minutes until firm.
  • Rinse off and pat dry.

*I use lemon juice as I have oily skin, but if you have dry skin, you can add oils.  Look online for the best oils to suit your skin type.*

Children’s Day

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Today is Children’s Day, a day to honour children globally.  So I have decided to post some of my favourite quotes about children.

 

“Children are great imitators. So give them something great to imitate.” – Anonymous

The Soul is healed by being with children.” – English Proverb

“An aware parent loves all children he or she interacts with – for you are a caretaker in those moments of time.” – Doc Childre

“No one has yet fully realized the wealth of sympathy, kindness and generosity hidden in the soul of a child. The effort of every true education should be to unlock that treasure.” – Emma Goldman

“Children are our most valueable resource.” – Herbert Hoover

“Only where children gather is there any real chance of fun.” – Mignon MacLaughlin

“Children are the living messages we send to a time we will not see.” – John W. Whitehead

Let It Snow Tomorrow

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LET IT SNOW TOMORROW

Let it snow tomorrow,

I hope it’s very deep.

Just let it snow and snow and snow,

When I am fast asleep.

Every place has a brand-new-face,

That’s all dressed up in white.

Then I’ll climb the mountainside,

And with my sledge have a million rides!

So let it snow on Monday, Tuesday,

Wednesday, Thursday,

On Friday let it snow and don’t miss

Saturday and Sunday.

My secret wish is simply this,

Just let it snow tomorrow.

Let is snow tomorrow

Let it snow tomorrow just for me!

By Webalice

 

What Makes you Beautiful?

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The Princess asked me a loaded question that had me struggling to find an answer.  The Princess received lip chap and play make up for her birthday and loved wearing every ounce of it at the same time.  She’d always watched me put my make up on in the morning and would play make up with Hubby.  I always stressed that she was beautiful but smart and kind and wonderful.  I try to avoid stories or movies that emphasize beauty above all else.  But despite all my best efforts, I heard this;

“Mommy, you wear make up so that you’ll be beautiful right?”

“No, people are beautiful without make up,” I reassured.

“Then why do you wear it?” she asked.

“Ummm,” I stuttered.  I wanted to answer this correctly.  I didn’t want to say that I didn’t look nice without make up or that women looked better with it.  I always try to be aware of how I answer her so that I can avoid making a mistake.  “I wear it because I work in an office where I have to look professional.”

“Ok Mom.” And she skipped away.

There have been a few moments in my life that left my speechless and this was one of them.  I help my make up brush in one hand and my eyeshadow in the other and sat silently in the bathroom on the side of the tub.  Perhaps I think too much and mull over what I say and do around my daughter, but I knew in the deepest parts of my soul that I didn’t want her to equate outside beauty with self-worth.

I remember what it felt like to be a young pre-teen and then a teenager.  As a preteen I had awful acne and was in that awkward phase of going from the tomboy to accepting my womanly fate.  It wasn’t always the greatest feeling being uncomfortable in your own skin.  And then the teenage years came and then it was peer pressure and cliques and attention from the opposite sex.  It wasn’t until I got into my late teens and then into university that I really came to terms with “liking me.”

I’ve never been or ever will be a size 2, let alone a size 6.  I have broad shoulders, I’m short and stocky, and a cow lick that will never go away.  But while these may be my least favourite attributes, I actually like who I am.  I like that I have freckles and that I have high cheek bones and green eyes.  And while I think that you should love yourself for yourself, I will admit that Hubby really helped me see how beautiful I was.  He thinks I’m the most gorgeous woman on Earth.  At first I thought “yeah right,” but after speaking with him more and more, I realize that he really does.  And if he can see how beautiful I am, then why can’t I?  I know I’ll never be a model but I’m ok with that.  I finally feel like this skin is my own.  It took time and maturity and knowing that I was loved for who I was that lead to this transformation.

While I cannot pretend to assume what it is like for girls today with social media and insane expectations of them, I really hope that I am able to ensure that Princess is a well-rounded and confident young woman and can see just how wonderful and beautiful I think and know she is.

What makes you beautiful?