poppy's 2nd birthday party

Sunday, December 30, 2012

A week after Beckett's dinosaur bash we went toadstool crazy & brought out the gnomes. Poppy loves gnomes and I love that she loves them. I mentioned in Beckett's birthday party post that I would lay in bed while recovering last January and dream on my kid's birthday party themes. Poppy's was easy, she loves gnomes...it then became a challenge for me to come up with different ways to decorate.
Once again the cookies were made by Sonia at Sweet Sugary Things. My incredibly creative mom made the toadstools on the table and gnome hats for everyone...the dahlias were picked from her garden that morning. Beckett enjoyed playing his birthday gift for everyone. I bought Poppy's sweet dress from The Cross months before her birthday, I saw it & knew it would be perfect on her. The little edible toadstools are cheese & cherry tomatoes with cream cheese dots. Dave painted eight brown stools & transformed them into little toadstools for the backyard.
I can't begin to express how much I love the cake. My friend Denise was the mastermind behind this sweet, little gnome cake. You can see Denise watching me pipe...she is so much fun to dream up a party with. I was given the gnome on the cake by a friend years ago and I ordered the toadstools on Etsy.
It was was so good...barely a crumb was left. With Beckett & Zoë nearby, Poppy didn't stand a chance blowing out her candles. Once again my friend Mika was there to take photos of the party.
This photo kind of says it all.....
As you can see, getting a family shot is a challenge. We eventually gave up.
It was a good time. A gnome garden party is a fun theme, the possibilities are endless. One more party to post...and then I'll start dreaming of next year's parties.

beckett's 5th birthday party

Okay, I'm a little behind in my posts...just a little. Beckett's 5th birthday party was in August & I'm just getting around to posting some photos now. Yikes. We had a great time, it was a beautiful August day - friends & family gathered around for a dinosaur party to celebrate sweet Beckett turning 5.
The cookies were made by Sonia at Sweet Sugary Things (she made our cookies last year too) they were so delicious....and sweet. The beautiful cake was made by my friend Denise, she is incredibly talented - a realtor who can bake & cook like nobody's business. My friend Mika Inokoshi took the party photos.
Just about everything "dinosaur" came from The Dinosaur Corporation - they had it all and the delivery was fast. The piñata was a big hit, although somewhat dangerous....we had to hold off the crowd of toddlers!
My mom made the dinosaur terrariums & the big balloons came from The Party Bazaar. The best part about the party was just watching it happen.
When I was in the hospital last January I would fall asleep while dreaming of my kid's birthday parties. I would go through every small detail...I truly believe it's what helped me heal. It made me so happy to dream of the parties & anticipate the look of joy on my little one's faces.

miss z is four

Monday, September 24, 2012

I can't believe my girl is four today....she was such a tiny little peach...my memories of her in my arms are vivid & I'm so grateful. I love looking back at the photos, I was a photo taking machine - it's shocking how much this babe has changed.
She has always been a firecracker, right from day one...she still is & that makes me happy. It's exhausting sometimes but I love that this girl is spicy.
Her personality is dynamic, her empathy is deep and her humour is off the charts. I love being around her. We all do. 
Miss Z is very excited to turn four, although she told me she can't wait to turn five. I explained how lucky she is to be a kid...there's no hurry to grow up....
It's such an exciting time for our family, our kids are growing & new experiences are around every corner. Baking, swimming, skating, skiing, school...questions & laughs everyday. 
It was hard to pick just a few photos of Miss Z....I have so many favourites, each one comes with a story & great memories. So....Happy Birthday Miss Z...thank you for the joy you bring to our hearts.

a big step

Friday, September 21, 2012

This has been a tough year - it's much better now - but it has been a rocky road. I haven't written much on my blog lately but that will change soon.  I'm feeling inspired, creative and like my old self again. A few weeks ago I sat down with TVW magazine and told my story...the story of my health and what happened to me at the beginning of 2012. It wasn't easy. What happened to me in January was extremely traumatic, I'm still processing it all. I really struggled with speaking about this but in my heart I knew it was part of the healing process and hopefully an opportunity to inform others about something most have never heard of. Today the TVW magazine hit stands, I can't take it back now - it's out there! It's been a big day for me, I feel a little exposed, my secret is out. I will write more about it here in the next little while, I have so much more to tell. I also have some really cute photos of Beckett's 5th birthday party and Poppy's 2nd birthday party that I want to share....Zoë's turns 4 on Monday...I'm in party planning mode!  As I said, I'm feeling like my old self....thank goodness. xx

poppy is 2

Thursday, August 16, 2012

And in the blink of an eye our baby girl Poppy is two. The last two years with this sweet girl in our lives has been heavanly. She is pure love and grace. When she was born with her dark shock of hair we were convinced that our third would look most like her Japanese and Italian ancestors. We were wrong.
The older Poppy gets, the more she looks like her Irish and English relatives!  Never did I think I would have a blue-eyed babe. She's a little beauty with a calm, sweet attitude.  She is easy like Sunday morning...like her Daddy.
It's incredible how fast a child grows in the first two years, walking and talking...smiling and imitating. When I look at the photos we have taken I'm surprised (an a little sad) at how quickly everyone has changed - it motivates me to take more photos and more videos...I don't ever want to forget these days.
This girl brings such happiness, we must say "she's so sweet" a hundred times a day. I love her and I can't believe that we are already celebrating two years of love. Happy Birthday Poppy. We love you. xx

5 years old

Thursday, August 2, 2012

Five years ago today our beautiful baby boy was born. I still can't believe it. As I write this sipping on my second cup of coffee, the girls are sleeping and Beckett is watching Shark Tale. I continue to glance over at him and marvel at his perfection. I'm not sure he understands that it's his birthday but that's okay, his sister Zoë does and she's been itching to open his presents for him. Before the chaos of the day begins though, it's just me and my boy...he has his movie and cars and I have my coffee. Beckett is an early riser and as much as I dislike 5  hours sleep, I have learned to savour the quiet morning hours with my oldest child.
This past year has been a big one for Mr. B, he is walking better and talking more. There are still some challenges, we continue to learn as we go and we are so excited for him to start Kindergarten in September...excited and totally scared at the same time!
I love this photo, this is when B first started to walk....I'm just noticing the sign behind him - a joke from a friend and no longer in our yard! Beckett now prefers to run and he is fast. He gives the best hugs, has the sweetest laugh and his empathy and compassion is extraordinary. I have learned more from him in the past five years than I ever thought possible.
We call him our "Beckett Bundle"...he is a bundle of love, laughs and wonder. Yesterday we spent three hours at Children's Hospital, he had his ears cleaned out (a miserable experience) a blood test and an x-ray to check for Atlantoaxial instability. It was a brutal morning but these are the things we have to do every now and then.
I could go on and on about my relationship with Beckett....but the relationship that Dave has with his boy is beyond special. They are two peas in a pod with an unbreakable bond that's foundation is pure love. The two men in my life are my bright lights.
The girls are waking up now...my quiet time with my five year old is ending....let the beautiful chaos begin. Happy Birthday Beckett, I love you so much. xx

world blood donor day

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Every blood donor is a hero. Earlier this year my life was saved by a hero (or heroes) who gave blood. Today is World Blood Donor Day. For more information you can visit the World Health Organization website here. Today I give thanks to the people who give the life-saving gift of blood.  I am forever grateful. xx

happy mother's day

Sunday, May 13, 2012

It was such a great day, so sunny & warm - finally!  My mom, mother-in-law & father-in-law came over, the plan was turkey burgers & salad....after a visit to the beach.
Poppy sat in one spot and didn't move, she picked up her sister's sunglasses and her shovel and she got down to some beach business. It was good.
Zoë is also fond of digging, she stalked a family who had dug a massive hole in the sand. As soon as they left to go home, Zoë moved in...it was tough to convince her to share her find.
My boy rocked the beach, he went in the water - fully clothed. He barely sat still, it was such a good time.This is B in the car to come home...he was so tired!
My mom is such a beauty in this photo, when I see myself in this photo now I see Zoë - it's amazing, even the look on my face in this photo is all Zoë. Love the wood paneling.This is my fourth Mother's Day...I think this one was the best. Maybe it's because this year has been such a tough one, when your health gives you a good scare you can't help but slow it down and really take stock of what you have to be grateful for.
I can't believe my boy is going to be five this August, how time flies by. I love this photo. I was so excited to be a mom. Beckett was the best baby and although we were at first surprised & sad to discover he had Down syndrome, it didn't last for long - that's pure joy on my face in this photo. I feel extreme love every time I look at him, I'm lucky to be his mama.
I dyed my hair dark when I went on maternity leave with Miss Z, I eventually went back to blond but now that I take a look at this picture I kinda like the shiny dark hair! When Zoë came along we were so excited, a baby girl - Dave always joked that he hoped she would look like me but act like him. My friends think that's hilarious. The joke is on Dave though, Zoë looks like me and acts like me, she is my mini-me....and I love it.
And then came Poppy. This girl started out with so much black hair, now she's the fairest of them all. With her beautiful blue eyes, light brown hair & ivory skin she melts my heart....and she's so sweet & easygoing - a lot like her Daddy.
I love being a mother. I had a great day with my family. Happy Mother's Day to you...I hope your day was lovely.


you go girl

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

We went to the Farmer's Market the other day. Miss Z dressed herself, I suggested that the sunglasses, headband and scarf might be too much. She disagreed. I love that she needed to try all of the dried fruit samples before choosing the cherries. You go girl.

world down syndrome day

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Today is the 7th anniversary of World Down Syndrome Day, for the first time in 2012 this day will officially be observed by the United Nations. Each year the voice of people with Down syndrome and those who live and work with them grows louder...but there is still much more that we can do.
When Beckett was born and we discovered that he had Down syndrome I was scared. My fear was based on the unknown, I really didn't know anything about Trisomy 21. I do now, like every other parent with a child with Down syndrome, I'm an expert! Down syndrome doesn't define Beckett, he's a boy that loves his family, cars, trains, movies and the park - he also happens to have an extra chromosome.
When Beckett was born I was constantly told what he wouldn't be able to do, it's such a shame that the beginning was so tainted with negativity. When I talk to new parents I tell them how wonderful our son is and how one day Down syndrome really won't cross their mind when they think of their child. It's true. Beckett does everything his sisters do, it takes him a little longer but that's okay.
Look at that boy in the photos above, I don't see Down syndrome, I don't see what he can't do. I see a ridiculously cute boy, who is full of love - like his sisters, he is pure joy. I can't wait to see what he achieves.
Happy World Down Syndrome Day.

i can see clearly now....

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

I feel like 2012 hasn't really started for me, I have spent most of the year recovering both physically and emotionally from emergency surgery. When something traumatic happens you can't help but think about what's most important to you. Your perspective changes, priorities are clear. I have spent the last while making a list of things I want to do, it's a good list....a sweet list to make. I want to collect my gramma's recipes, make a photo book of the kids, read more books, organize the attic, bake more, write more - it's a long list of things I actually want to do. In the last couple of months we have visited the park more, I learned how to make ravioli (my favourite food) & we go for more walks. I have even baked - which I'm not good at but the kids love it and so do I.  The photo of Zoë holding the cupcake is so sweet, right after the photo was snapped she dropped the cupcake and Stanley ate it - wrapper and all - in 2 seconds flat.  We laughed our heads off. Bring on 2012.

i'm back....

Sunday, March 4, 2012

I'm heading back to work tomorrow (Monday March 5). It's been over 10 weeks since I last anchored the news. These last two months have been physically exhausting and emotionally draining. I'm feeling good now. I'm strong, I have perspective.
I'm still taking baby steps, I'm going back to work four days a week for the first month and will then evaluate my stamina with my doctor.
I will share more details about my journey soon, I'm still absorbing it all and trying to understand what it all means and how it has changed me. There's no doubt that this has been a life altering experience. I have many people to thank...it's overwhelming.
Let me start with this - thank you to everyone who send me an e-mail, a message on Facebook, a tweet on Twitter or stopped me on the street to say a kind word and wish me well. Your words and concern are so appreciated...random notes of kindness from people I have never met - I love that.  Thank you.  See you tomorrow on CTV News at 6....I'm so excited to be back. xx

happy valentine's day

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

cupcakes & love

Saturday, February 11, 2012

Today we made cupcakes. My friend Stephanie  and her daughter came over to decorate with us, we thought some Valentine's Day cupcakes would be great afternoon fun. Steph and I iced the cupcakes, the toddlers ate the cupcakes. Beckett decided that the park was a better bet, so he took off with Gramma. Poppy is only 18 months old and because I want to shield her from the evil temptation of sugar, I only let her eat two tiny cupcakes with no icing. After devouring four (overly decorated) cupcakes each Emmie & Zoë ran off to play, leaving Steph and I with a fantastic mess of sprinkles everywhere.  It was a great day.