Back To School : Simple Traditions

Thursday, September 14, 2017

School Season is here! Kids have returned to school, did you do anything commemorate the day or wish you had?!

We ourselves have a grade one'er and a preschooler on our hands! As a parent these are big moments for our kids (and us)! It's a weird, exciting, slightly terrifying transition going from 24/7 parents to only seeing our kids about 6 or so hours a day! This is why I want to share some simple ways you can commemorate this big change and even start a yearly tradition for each new school year!

1. Take A Picture
Last year when Rylee started Kindergarten we started our first tradition by capturing her on her way in her first day of school outfit with an old picture frame I refurbished into a chalkboard. This year we did the same thing for her first day of grade one and for Zachery's first day of preschool!

2. Celebrate With A Special Treat
Last year we took Rylee out to her favourite restaurant, Chinese. This year we did take out and celebrated at home. It doesn't have to be anything fancy or super expensive, but taking a time out with your child with a hot chocolate date, or going for ice cream, or bake some cupcakes is a great way to celebrate their big day and create a fun memory with them.

3. First Day of School Questionnaire
I saw this everywhere on social media this year, we do this for birthdays so I opted out but its still a great idea! Ask your child some simple questions like, "whats your favourite colour?", "Who's your best friend?", "What do you want to be when you grow up?", and so on. This is a great to hold on to and compare over the years.

4. Create Something
Most first days back to school are half days, set aside your afternoon to create something with your child. You could go all out with a paint your own pottery session, paint or craft class, or keep it budget friendly by creating something at home. One idea could be making a shrinky dink keychain of their handprint, as the years go by you'll have a cute mini keepsake of how they've grown, check it out the tutorial here.

5. A Special Gift
I'm not about over spending or creating a materialistic tradition, but think about holding on to one of their back to school essentials (new shoes, t-shirt, backpack), get them the one thing they had their eye on and surprise them when they wake up for their first day back to school. Another good and educational idea could be a new book from a series or author they love.

Good luck with the back to school transitions with early wake ups and tired little people. One day they will be grown and enjoying these moments now will be something you never regret!

Family Camping Checklist

Wednesday, September 6, 2017

It's the last weekend of summer, grab your family and this Camping Checklist and enjoy these fleeting moments of freedom and great weather before our mundane West Coast rains sets in and the routines of back to school pick up.

This summer we embarked on our first ever camping adventure as a family! Surprisingly with three children, five and under, it went considerably well, so well that we want to do it all over again...and again! (I've always loved camping, I can thank my Mom and Dad for that, my husband however he was the one who needed some winning over... mission accomplished!)

The week prior to us leaving we joked that this trip could be the end of our marriage (not really), but it was super stressful! Leading up to it Sevio was working a ton plus had deadlines to make with his online courses, and I had my hands full with the kids and what felt like a gagillion appointments. I did all the packing and organizing the day before we left, it was awful, but, out of it I can share with you an easy checklist to get you started off right to a great family weekend away.

I'm typically a Type-A minimalist packer (is that a thing?), everything has its rightful place and there's no need truckin' around more than you need to... thus why I create lists. Everything goes into a category and then I pack accordingly trying to make everything that should be together, be together, in the most concise way... it's one of my "cute" quirks being so OCD in my packing ways.

Once loaded up, and people this is another good reason to be organized, we still had room to spare... which is something amazing when you have to climb in and out of a vehicle multiple times for pee and food breaks with three little people! Anyways, back on point, we loaded up and left with the rising sun on the first boat to the mainland. Our first pit stop was Abbotsford to fuel up, then Hope for caffeine (mom fuel), then Merritt for lunch (where it was snowing ash from the crazy forest fires), and arrived in Kamloops, our final destination by mid day to set up camp. The kids were amazing, I actually don't think there were any meltdowns that whole trip.

We stayed right along the Thompson River, it wasn't anything fancy, it wasn't remote, or have any special amenities, but it was all we needed and we got a great flat grassy site that had a big tree to give us shade, and we were about 30 feet from a mini beach access. The kids had fun unloading the van and "helping" daddy set up the tent. We borrowed an 8 man tent for this trip and it was amazing how spacious it was for our crew of five.

We were there for a soccer tournament that Sevio was playing in, so we watched a lot of soccer in two days, played at the beach, and just hung out with the other players and their families. On our last afternoon at the campsite a bunch of the guys had preplanned making a DIY waterslide along the banks of the river. It was a great last moment to end on, the kids had a blast sliding down this man made slide built into the sandy bank lined with a huge plastic sheet fed by a water pump one of the guys had brought... that was truly camping at its finest!

Don't forget to download your free Family Camping Checklist Printable and have fun adventuring!

Smile Project : Month 8

Thursday, August 17, 2017

This summer has been such a whirlwind of events that goodness me, I actually forgot about the Smile Project! Thankfully I'm only a week late with month 8, and it is for this very reason that I love this project, it reminds me each month to pick up my camera and capture our kids as they grow.

This month changes have occurred, though you may not be able to tell. Rylee got her Rapunzel long hair trimmed back about 4 inches, and she's sporting a Band-Aid due to her brother sitting on her head as she went down a slide... slide burn...ouch! Zach physically hasn't changed much but this last month his personality has. He's asserting himself more and wants his voice to be heard, which with his lack of clarity in his speech it is frustrating for everyone involved! Adie, my little peanut, is still just as cute and wild as ever, her hair may have gotten crazier and quite frankly her personality too.


Adelyne Turns Two : 20 Questions

Thursday, August 3, 2017

It's 20 Question time! Every year around each kid's birthdays I like to document what their current fave things are. It's simple, we ask the same 20 questions every year, and as time goes on we'll have something to look back on to see how much they change over the years.

You can read past years of the kid's "20 Questions Interviews" here.

This time around, its our baby who is no longer a baby, Adelyne Quinn! She's just turned two on the 26th of July. This birthday in particular is such a bitter sweet moment! Adie is our last "planned" babe (you never know, the odds could defy us :P), so cue an over exaggerated fist pump and cue this momma shedding a few tears over a season of life that will no longer exist! 

So let's get to it, we'll see how well she does, this should be the last year I have to fill in some blanks due to her limited vocabulary!

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20 Questions for Adelyne : Year Two

1 // What is your favourite color? All colors.
2 // What is your favourite toy? Melissa & Doug Fold Up Princess Castle 
3 // What is your favourite fruit? All kinds, but watermelon has been a current fave.
4 // What is your favourite movie? Paw Patrol
5 // What is your favourite outfit? her birthday suit!
6 // What is your favourite thing to eat for lunch? Hot dogs.
7 // What is your favourite game?  Peek-a-boo.
8 // What is your favourite animal? Dinosaurs and puppies.
9 // What is your favourite treat? Andy! (aka: candy)
10 // What is your favourite book? Carry and Learn Numbers Board Book.
11 // What is your favourite song? Sleeping Bunnies
12 // Who is your best friend? Rylee.
13 // What is your favourite drink?
Dauder (Water).
14 // What do you like to take to bed with you at night?
Babies and unc-ee (monkey).
15 // What is your favourite thing to eat for breakfast?
16 // What is your favourite thing to do outside?  Play in the dirt.
17 // What is your favourite word?
18 // What is your favourite thing to do? 
19 // What is the latest thing you've learned?
Lots of new words, and starting to sit on the potty.
20 // What do you want to be when you grow up? Can't answer this one yet.

Smile Project : Month 7

Monday, July 17, 2017

Here we are, month seven of the smile project! Now, less than a year left of capturing a child's smile,  watching their personalities, their understanding, and their physical looks evolving.

As I've gone through this project, I've been so thankful for it! Gone are the days of basically having my camera attached to me, half the time I barely even know where it is anymore. This phase of life with three littles is busy, and having the smile project in my life makes sure I get at least one picture of each kid every month... for that I'm so grateful! 

For a look back of months past, click here!

Here is miss smiley Rylee:

and my handsome little man, Zachery:

and the ever silly Adelyne:

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