6/52 – Her & Him

A portrait of my son, once a week, every week, in 2016.

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Little Man : We had a pretty strange week you and I : snow storms, rain storms, icy rain storms (lots of storms really)… It all led to cancelled therapy sessions, lots of time indoors and a bit of cabin fever. But we made the best of it. We discovered you really don’t like cloud dough this week, but my! Do you LOVE stickers! You couldn’t get enough. We covered pages after pages of colorful little shapes. You had so much fun. I love discovering the things that make you click, that excite you, that brings out your creative soul. I know we will have many more moments of discovery over the next few months. It’s always a fun ride with you my love. <3

A portrait of my daughter, once a week, every week, in 2016.

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Little Miss : Such a quiet week for you. before and after school, lots of mellow crafts, lots of paging through books or playing with your fairies. You have been learning about so much in class, you get home happy and exhausted. We’ve been learning some life skills this week : sewing buttons, cutting your own food and practicing tying your shoe laces. You are just growing up so fast. I wish I could just freeze time some days. I love you so much. <3

Joining Jodi for the 52 Project

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5/52 – Her & Him

A portrait of my daughter, once a week, every week, in 2016.

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Little Miss : It is officially winter Carnival here my sweet and this is the first year we feel you completely enthralled. There wasn’t a line up too long, a game too scary or a challenge too big for you. Even I got a bit discouraged at the end when you wanted to visit the ice castle and there was a 30 minute wait. But you patiently waited for our turn to come and how happy you were to see all the ice built furniture and decor. I remember just a few years ago, the mere thought of going outside in the cold was cause for meltdowns, but you are truly our little winter princess now. Oh what fun we had! <3

A portrait of my son, once a week, every week, in 2016.

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Little Man : That face! I would eat it all up. We have such fun you and I don’t we? You are always so well-behaved when we are out and about. I know many see shopping and running errands with a toddler as a challenge, but you adore it. We’ve found a great balance between you getting to run and have fun and mom having to do be a bit more serious and we always end at your favorite café : The counters are loaded with organic gluten-free, dairy-free baked goods and you are in heaven. Our little special dates. I wouldn’t trade a minute of my time with you for my old life. How could I miss any of it with you to make me smile and laugh everyday? <3

Joining Jodi for the 52 Project

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4/52 – Him & Her (a few days late)

A portrait of my daughter, once a week, every week, in 2016.

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Little Miss : Oh my goodness, you are just so patient. You will let your little brother tackle you, jump on you, wrestle you down to the ground, all with a big smile on your face. That day, you had snow in your face, down your collar, you said nothing and smiled. The whole thing ended with a big bear hug and that is what you remembered. That your brother loves you in his very special way. And that is all that matters to you. You are the best big sister he could ever hope for. <3

A portrait of my son, once a week, every week, in 2016.

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Little Man : Rough week-end huh my love? We had so much going on and you just tagged along, barely complained. But on Sunday, that was it. We went walking, you just let yourself be pulled. Doesn’t happen often, us seeing you exhausted, but it is nice to see you relax once in a while. Feels good doesn’t it? Maybe we can work on that, all of us together. To create that balance for you. That is all we want for you : a balanced, happy life. <3

Joining Jodi for the 52 Project

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Homemade, handmade, heart made!


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In 2015, I had told myself that all gifts that came out of our house would be homemade. I really wanted to take the time and make each piece special, so that everything I gifted would truly come from a place of mindfulness and love. Not that a store-bought gift is devoid of feeling or intention, but I wanted to force myself to slow down. Well, life happens doesn’t it? And with all the unexpected news and the endless stream of appointments, evaluations, sessions we ended up with, most of my free time flew away. I did manage to make a few presents this year, but more than half of everything gifted was purchased. I was (and still am) a bit disappointed.

So I decided to pledge the same again this year. If anything, I see it as a way for me to make the time to practice my crafts, to get some half-done projects finished and to truly reconnect with my passion for homemade things.

So today was the first of I hope many homemade presents.

Oh how I love, love, LOVE a patchwork pillow! They are just my favorite thing in the world to make for kids. I mean, what kid do you know doesn’t like a large overstuffed pillow to crash into? And I find that disappearing 9-patches are just so much fun to work with for small projects like this. It was the very first quilting technique I ever learned (over 4 years ago) and I’ve been coming back to them all the time. They are wonderful for using up scrap fabric or for using leftover charm squares (5 X 5 inch pre-cut fabric) and really, the more random the better. I always back my pillows with flannel for that extra soft touch and make it an overlapping pillowcase so that the pillow can be removed and the pillowcase washed. I know my kiddos carry theirs everywhere so they get pretty grimy.

My daughter left for her little birthday party now. I’ve given many pillows over the years and although they are rarely the most popular gift in the heat of the moment, they seem to always be the ones that the kiddos hold onto the longest. I think that is what I like the most about anything homemade : they defy fashion and fads, they live on through the years. Some get passed down, some get given to loved ones. They are often reminders of happy memories… and isn’t the creation of a happy memory a wonderful gift to give?

 

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Setting goals and finding our new rhythm

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I hope all of you are doing well. We have been enjoying the most glorious weather the last few days. The sun has been shining bright, sunrises and sunsets have been amazing, star-gazing has been wonderous, the woods have been calling morning, noon and night and we are being often visited all our feathered friends, some sooner than usual due to the warmer climate. We have also started Little Man’s therapy and we couldn’t be happier. He has been responding very well to all the stimulation. We are currently receiving 4 hours of in-home care a week, which should increase to 6 to 9 hours a week come March. More and more, his therapy is a part of our daily life and I’m grateful for the support and the learning opportunity.

A few weeks ago, I shared with you my new year intentions. I had given myself the month of January to come up with a real plan in my new desire to create a more “me friendly” space in this busy life I lead. I know most of you will understand how it may take up to a month for a mother to lay down a real plan for something as simple as carving up free time. And although I’m still figuring stuff out, I have narrowed down basic guidelines to how I would like my year to unfold and I thought I’d share what I have so far :

Health :

Although I consider myself pretty active, my kind of activity revolves around running after my kids and carrying a 35 lbs toddler around most days. It does keep one on her toes, but I’ve found myself craving something more structured. So I’ve decided to start doing yoga again. As much as I would love to join a yoga studio and leave, mat on my shoulder with peace of mind and a song in my heart, lets face it : It won’t happen this year. So my husband and I have decided to give an online membership a try. I’m signing us up for the free trial this week-end. And I know my husband will keep me in check. I have also decided to cut down on caffeine. I had become pretty horrible with coffee towards the end of 2015 and I have reduced it to One Good Cup a day, but only if I drink my 16 oz of lemon water before. It’s been amazing how much more energized I’ve felt. Now, we have allowed ourselves the luxury of a second cup on week-ends when out and about, but those have been pretty rare.

Reading List :

Believe it or not, I only read 4 books last year. Actually, I should say I read 3 books because one, I read twice. Now, I read plenty of magazines and a few books relating to my online herbal studies course, but for leisure, that was it. And for a girl that used to read one book a week, I find it rather pitiful. In addition to not reading, I’ve also amassed a fairly important collection of books I am yet to read. So, I’ve given myself a 10 book challenge for the year. I figure those, plus the books on my course reading list should be a great way to get me out of my reading funk.

I’ve decided on 6 non fiction (I love a good non fiction book), 2 fiction (I’m open to suggestions, I’ve already started my first one) and 2 re-reads. Why re-reads? Well, one of the few books I did manage to read last year was “The Life-changing Magic Of Tidying Up: The Japanese Art Of Decluttering And Organizing” by Marie Kondo. Through a series of purging efforts, I was able to reduce my book collection by about 60%. As I was going through my books and asking myself what these books meant to me and if they sparked joy, I promised myself that every book I was keeping, I would at some point over the next few years read again. So what better time to start than now?

I also promised myself to read the books I had yet to read and kept. So no new books for myself for a little while. I have enough on my shelves.

Journaling :

As I had mentioned as well, I wanted to start journaling. I’ve always wanted to, but never got into it. Always something better to do, you know? But I am determined now. I will be building my Bullet Journal and setting it in motion come February 1st (Don’t you just love when a month starts on a Monday?) and the same with my Yes Book, inspired by Mara. I’m planning on using my Bullet Journal for my more official “to-dos” and tasks, but I’m allowing myself to make my Yes Book a free-flowing writing adventure. A place to not only write down my ideas, but also to keep a record of everything that inspires me.

One last piece of writing I want to start is about our Little Man’s journey. I think that setting goals as a family and with his therapists, keeping track of what works and what doesn’t, taking time to acknowledge that fact that this work needs to be put in and the results that follow will be a wonderful tool. Because I know I will remember a lot, but I can’t remember everything. I found a wonderfully simple weekly planner online that I want to use. Taking the time to sit down at the beginning of each week, figuring out my feelings, addressing different issues and planning the week ahead I think will make me feel less stressed out. I think everyone will benefit greatly.

So that is my plan for now. I’m sure more will pop up as days move along. But for now, I think that is a good start.

I hope that all your new year intentions are going well and that you are finding time for yourself in your busy life. Have a wonderful week-end my friends.

 

 

 

 

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3/52 – Her & Him

A portrait of my daughter, once a week, every week, in 2016.

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Little Miss : So concentrated. I’ve seen such a huge improvement in your ability to focus in the last few weeks. You want to apply yourself so much, you care about not only the result, but the process as well. I watch you take on new projects with such energy and pride. I love how your confidence has grown since the beginning of school. You are such a talented little person. I’m so proud of you. <3

A portrait of my son, once a week, every week, in 2016.

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Little Man : Oh what a moment! We could read it on your face, you knew how major this step towards a new kind of freedom was and you were quietly reveling in it. You are growing so fast, it just blows my mind. I love seeing you become such a strong and confident little man. Before you know it, spring will be here and you’ll be riding down the street, a smile on your face I bet and I’ll be right there beside you. <3

Joining Jodi for the 52 Project

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2/52 – Her & Him

A portrait of my daughter, once a week, every week, in 2016.

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Little Miss : Santa was very good to you this Christmas. You asked for only one thing and you got it : a REAL camera, like mom, to start taking your own pictures of nature. What an artful mind you have at such a young age. You have been running around the woods everyday, taking pictures. Some are landscapes, but mostly, you have been training your eye. You notice small mushrooms, the texture of different barks, squirrel nests all up in the trees or animal tracks in the snow. I’ve seen you freeze your fingers white to get the perfect shot and that just makes my entire heart and soul sing. Your passions, whatever they may be, will take you far my love. Watching you embrace and nurture those passions is a real privilege. <3

A portrait of my son, once a week, every week, in 2016.

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Little Man : My snow baby. If you are outside, you are rolling in it, throwing it, kicking it, stomping it, laying down looking up at the sky in it and even sometimes eating it. :-) We went sledding this morning and you couldn’t get enough. You kept running up that very high hill, ready for more. The faster and the more bumps, the better… You are fearless my love, taking life as it comes and running with it, full speed ahead. You want to taste it all. We could all learn so much from you.  <3

Joining Jodi for the 52 Project

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