WITL 2017: WEDNESDAY PHOTOS & STORIES

6:29 AM Most days I wear makeup even if it’s a work day or not. I am not going to lie, I feel naked going out in public without foundation and a little mascara. Even on maternity leave, I kept up wearing it. Silly or not, it is apart of my self care routine.

6:41 AM Most days I tidy up spaces that I leave, which includes the bathroom. I don’t know if I feel pressure to do this but I feel off if something is left on the floor. I notice that the laundry bin is getting full. Make a mental note to wash the towels when I get home from work this evening.

7:01 AM As Aaron makes Rowan’s lunch I set out the kids clothes and bags. Today it is raining and so I set out their rainboots. Most days I wonder if I dressed the kids appropriately and if they are warm enough.

7:03 AM Some days Sammy sits at the counter and plays with the tap. Today, he found a box of Dori gummies in the cupboard and is playing / talking to them. Everyday we are keeping a close watch of him and telling him to sit on his bum.

7:12 AM Most days she shares with him; sometimes she protests.

7:37 PM Most days I feel like we are running late and today is no different. I read a quote on Facebook that said something like when you are working parent you feel like to have parent your kids like you don’t have a job and work like you have no kids. I am trying to balance each of the aspects of my life. Tonight I work late which mean I am going to miss evening routine. I am happy to feel productive but I miss my kiddos on nights like these.

These days I feel like the “good” weather is right around the corner.

8:11 AM Most days I drive the black car, but today I drive the blue one which is my husbands. I notice when we get in that the car is almost empty. I fill up the it with $43.33 dollars worth of gas. Extra bonus: there is a Starbucks close by.

Most days I make my own coffee but today I buy one.

1:51 PM Once rounds are finished, I head back to my desk with a purpose. I have items to check off my to do list and clients booked with appointments at 4 pm and 5 pm. After finishing three key items, I feel a little squirrely and need to get out of our small office.

3:31 PM Most days, I power through behind my desk but today I go for a walk to get some fresh air. My head immediately feels better. I think about running and if I could fit training for a 10 km race into my schedule. Jury is still out on that idea but clearly just walking would help. Need to build more of this in to my self care.

6:01 PM Most days, I race to pick up the kids. Although I am eager to get home, I am able to enjoy the weather outside as I walk to the parking lot.

8:01 PM Most days he is asleep by 7:30 pm. As I walk up the stairs he calls out from his room. Aaron tells me that he has called out for me, so I can’t resist a snuggle or two.

8:15 PM Most days Aaron reads Rowan bedtime stories. Today I get to spend some time one on one time with my girlie at the end of the day. We read Pinkalicious and the Pink Planet, a book the Easter bunny brought here.

8:21 PM Most days she asks us to shut of the light and close the door when it is time for bed. Tonight she falls asleep as I read to her.

Wednesday Reflections

After a long day at work, I am so happy to be at home with my kids. However my day isn’t finished when they go to bed. I clean the kitchen, put dishes in the dishwasher and start on laundry. Oh yeah, I am also trying to document WITL. I know the value of this project which is why I keep pushing through. There are less photos today vs yesterday and that’s okay. Just keep swimming!

Gratitudes

  1. I am grateful for a husband who actively parents our kiddos and has fun doing it
  2. I am grateful for strong coffee as usual
  3. I am grateful for this WITL project as it is helping me to see what matters most in my life and what is deserving of my time & attention

Wednesday Present Participle List

Attempting to drink more water after realizing I only drank one cup of coffee yesterday …. thank you intense week long documentary project!?!

Listening to “throw back hits” on the radio during my commute and thinking to myself,  those songs aren’t that old!

Thinking about my fitness goals and how to regularly schedule in running time into my routine…why oh why is it so hard !?!

Checking my smart phone incessantly for WITL updates and inspiration! Thanks for all the encouragement this week!

Watching Neil Brennan’s 3 Mic’s comedy special on Netflix for the fourth time as I write this blog post on Wednesday evening

Favourite Conversation From the Day:

Overheard when Sam wakes up:

Aaron: “Morning Sammy!”

Sam (speaks like he has marbles in his mouth): “Daddy, Where’s Ro-ro?”

AND

During Rowan’s bedtime stories:

Rowan: “Mommy, read it again!”

2017 Week In The Life Intention: To showcase the small things (stresses and all)

WITL 2017: TUESDAY PHOTOS & STORIES

5:55 AM Tuesday are work days which means I wake up earlier than Aaron and the kids to get myself ready. “I am a morning person” which is mostly true and also my pep talk to get me out of bed. I shower and get dressed in my office clothes. My watch and wedding ring are generally the last items I I put on before I head out the door.

Most days I put her hair in a ponytail.

Tuesdays are garbage days around here. When I leave the house, I have tunnel vision – I need to drop Rowan off at before and after school care and then drive 50 ish minutes to work. My hope for today is that I don’t get caught behind a garbage truck.

1:59 PM Clinic is done and I rush to a meeting that I almost forgot about! Thanks Google calendar for the reminder and keeping me organize. After an extra long weekend with the kiddos my brain feels like mush. This is not like me and I am somewhat frustrated. As I run to my meeting, I enjoy the sunshine in the foyer at work and notice wall art that I have never seen before. Love opening my eyes during this project to see what is really around!

4:36 PM After two back to back afternoon meetings, I leave work. I wonder if there is enough time to run to the grocery store after work to buy some essentials like milk, bananas and strawberries before picking up Rowan. The sun is shining and I keep the windows open the whole way home to get a cool breeze. I desperately want to put my sandals on, but can’t. My drive takes almost an hour so my grocery store plans are foiled. I wonder if I will have enough energy to venture out  after the kids go to bed. Spoiler alert: the answer is no. We have enough I tell myself, we will have to make due for one more day.

5:30 PM Rowan is helping to clean up when I stop in at blank school. Specifically she is sorting the dinosaurs and sea creatures into two separate bins.  Her after school teacher says she had a good day and was a good listener. Rowan is excited to tell me this herself. She runs down the stairs, asks if we are going straight home and if she can watch some shows. I say yes to both things.

5:53 PM Ten minutes after we get home, so do Aaron and Sam. Charlie is excited see everyone as am I.

6:00 PM She asks a few times what is for dinner and if she can have a snack. I offer her cheese, crackers and grapes. She only chooses the crackers to eat. Right now, she loves to watch Sid the Science Kid. Tonight she watches an episode about the digestive system and asks me if she has a long intestine in her body while I make dinner. Ha! Never a dull moment in our household.

6:01 PM Sammy is excited for cheese when I bring out the snack. Right now, he loves to be in the learning tower helping me cook as he loves to be where the action is.

6:07 PM I boil some water for the pasta and start making a lemon, turkey and pea sauce.

6:08 PM Aaron takes off his suit jacket and grabs the mail. After flipping through mostly flyers, he goes up stairs to change. It is so nice to have him at home for dinner. I know that this won’t always be the case. In fact, today he texted me to say that his business trip next week has been confirmed. I will fly solo next week Monday to Thursday.

6:24 PM Dinner! Tonight she wants her pasta with cheese and only the peas from the sauce. It’s true, she is picky eater but she has come a long way. In addition to encouraging her to eat a variety of foods, we are also directing her to use her utensils. She uses her fork and I secretly do a happy dance in my seat. It’s an ebb and flow / fine balance of continually cheering her on and at times, she doesn’t always like my praise.

6:25 PM Love my goof balls.

6:42 PM He loves to follow what his sister does. Like Ro, Sam puts his cup and plate in the sink after getting down from his high chair. I like the help cleaning up.

Yeah, this dishes wont get done tonight. Dishwasher is packed, so they will have to wait for tomorrow.

7:11 PM Tonight is bath night. The kids race up stair and Aaron starts running the water in the bath tub. Rowan and Sam have a love/hate relationship when they play in the water. Usually, someone protests that the other has taken their toy unjustly. Tonight it is all about the love as the combine their efforts in splashing Daddy. We again employ man on man parenting. I take Sam out and chase him in the hallways until I wrangle him to put on his diaper and pjs. Aaron creates a story with Rowan and takes her downstairs for a bed time snack. After doing some stetches, I run the dishwasher and go to bed around 9:45. I am exhausted.

Tuesday Reflections

Although I was excited to go to work to have some adult alone time, I realize that there are actually tangible tasks that I need to complete! Ha / Blergh! It is good to see my coworkers and clients and catch up on how there Easter celebrations were but my head is foggy which is totally not like me. I am semi frustrated for my lack of clarity. I push through, because what else can I do, but “just keep swimming”. I am relieved to see my kiddos at home and to have a little down time in the evening. It’s crazy the difference that one day makes.

Gratitudes

  1. I am grateful for coffee, coffee, coffee!
  2. I am grateful for podcasts and the chance to learn something new on my commute everyday
  3. I am grateful for the simplicity of pasta night dinners

Tuesday Present Participle List

Listening to the Pop Culture Happy Hour podcast on my way to work

Buying coffee & tea for my coworkers at Tim Hortons – mama needs an extra pep in her step!

Attempting to speak in sentences at work; however, the extra long weekend has affected my word recognition…what the, the what?

Doing some stretching / deep knee bends after the kids go to bed as my piriformis muscle is sore

Wishing there were more hours in the day to do everything I need / want to do like going for a run along the beach.

Favourite Conversation From the Day:

As told by Aaron as he picks Sam up from daycare:

Aaron: “Hi Sammy!”

Sam (speaks like he has marbles in his mouth): “Daddy, I build big tower!”

Or so we think he said! Ha!

AND

Overheard during bathtime when Rowan was chatting with Aaron about what she wanted to be when she is an adult:

Rowan: “When I grow up I want to be a Grandma! Yes, a Grandma Forster!:

Aaron: “You can have kids if that’s want you want, Rowan!”

Rowan (directing her comment at me); “Jess, you can be the mommy, I will be the Grandma!”

2017 Week In The Life Intention: To showcase the small things (stresses and all)

WITL 2017: MONDAY PHOTOS & STORIES

7:01 AM After watching Elmo in bed, the kids and I head downstairs for breakfast. Aaron has a headache so he sleeps in. I fly solo with the kids, just hanging out playing.

9:02 AM My little buddy helping me do laundry. Sam loves to take the clothes out of the washer and put them in the dryer. Today he tries to dry his owl and the play potty along with the white towels. If left to his own devices, he would throw books in there too and press all the buttons, 8261 times.

9:36 AM Dressing children and making funny faces in no particular order, since 2011. Love these self timer moments and capturing life through door ways.

10:11 AM Holiday Mondays are for playing with stuffed animals that Nanny and the Easter bunny brought.

11:26 AM Before leaving the house for our walk this morning Charlie followed us around to make sure we were leaving all together. We go to Starbucks for our usual “weekend treat” – that’s a grande flat white for me; a black tea lemonade for him;  croissants for the kiddos. When we get to the dog park we lose Charlie’s ball and the kids want to explore the rocks. I’m not going to lie, having a dog complicates things with two young children. Charlie barks incessantly for us to throw something, anything! It is like he is shouting at us, thinking that we are somehow holding out on him. Balancing Charlie’s demands with normal child rearing makes me a little squirrelly at times, today included. At least he gets to swim and splash.

12:05 PM As Rowan plays soccer outside with the neighbours, Sam and I make lunch. Sam “helps” and I only have to clean up minimal liquid off the counter and floor. On today’s menu: scrambled eggs with salsa and gucamole for me while it is scrambled eggs with strawberries and cucmbers for the kids.

1:06 PM I lie down for an hour; only to get back up to do chores. Holiday weekends are much different with kids. There is no break from housework. No binge watching anything today unless “binge watching” means unloading the dishwasher. Ha! I’m so tired….

2:15 PM Someone draws Princess Poppy as I tidy up. Her penmanship is improving and I love to see her get crafty. I also love the fact that she wants to give this picture to baby A after she learns that we are having an afternoon playdate.

Most days, this one rests during quiet time too.

3:09 PM Generally he is happy EXCEPT after he gets up. Thank goodness he slept because he skipped 3/4 naps this weekend. No wonder he is cranky. Also: his fine motor skills are so good, he takes his own sleep sack off! Ha!

3:10 PM Daddy is home from the gym. Both kids are eager to tell them about their afternoons.

3:20 PM Put on my comfy clothes & bandana as we are going to play soccer and blow bubbles in the park. It’s not a workout per say, but I do get in my steps.

4:15 PM He is confident in climbing the stairs and going down the slide. I follow him and remind him to watch the steps and sit on his bum. I’m sure, I look like a crazy person but I don’t care.

4:31 PM Before we racing out of the playground to the closest Starbucks to use the bathroom, Aaron and I “switch”. We employ a man on man strategy when it comes to watching out kids at the park. He is often with her, I am often with him. I savour these moments with my big kiddo more than I did before. I am not sure why. The warm hearted moment ends when she gives me sass and I switch back to toddler mode.

6:00 PM Aaron makes chicken fajitas for dinner. I am thrilled but I am counting down the moments until I can have some time to myself. This mama is tired. Sam goes to down around 7:30 pm while Ro is in bed by 8 pm. I hop on the computer and start blogging. Hooray for Monday!

Monday Reflections

This morning I am relaxed but by late afternoon and I am eager to get back to my regular work routine. I love having a long weekend off with my kiddos but I am a creature of habit. I need some adult alone time. I like the fact that I didn’t have to drive anywhere in the car today but oddly look forward tomorrow’s commute and the opportunity to listen to a podcast or two.

Gratitudes

  1. I am grateful for sunny days and crisp spring air
  2. I am grateful for slower paced days that are spent walking in our hood
  3. I am grateful for impromptu play dates with friends

Monday Present Participle List

Craving chocolate for breakfast but opting for lemon water and oatmeal.

Listening to Rowan sing “How Far I’ll Go” from Moana and I am impressed with all the words she knows.

Reading & re-reading truck books to Sammy and marveling at how much he enjoys the “beep-beeps” (aka his word for trucks).

Watching the latest episode of SNL on my Ipad after the kids go to bed & loving Jimmy Fallon and all the guest appearances.

Snapping lots of pictures and saying Ali’s words over and over in my head: “show me your life, right now…”

Favourite Conversation From the Day:

Overheard downstairs between Aaron & Rowan:

Rowan (in a robot voice): “Give me some food, I am hungry!”

Aaron: “Can you ask me nicely?”

Rowan (still in a robot voice):  “Robots don’t know any manners!”

AND

Discussing how I arrived at school when I was a kid with Rowan, outside of Starbucks

Rowan: “Mom, did you go to Blank School when you were my age?”

Me: “No honey

Rowan: “Whaaaaat? You rode a bus?”

Favourite Moment:

When Rowan drew a picture for W our next door neighbour, to say thank you teaching her how to play soccer.

2017 Week In The Life Intention: To showcase the small things (stresses and all)

Episode 28: WITL Roundtable

On today’s roundtable I am speaking with Ali Edwards, Brandi Kincaid and Pam Baldwin about all things Week In The Life! In this conversation we chat about streamlining our process, how a project like this can help you reflect on the life you want to live and how to be “successful”. This is a great conversation for anyone interested in completing an intensive project like this.

Enjoy the show!

Show notes:

Ali’s 2017 Prep Post

Jess’ 2010 Week In the Life Album

Jess ‘ 2012 Week In the Life Album

Jess’ 2016 WITL Photos & Words

Episode 27: Catching Up Roundtable

On today’s show, I speak with Diana Sanchez, Krista Wells and Crafty Jen Schow about being behind, “catching up” and some things we feel guilty about when it comes to scrapbooking. The panel discusses strategies for dealing with these and tips and trick for moving forward. This is a thought provoking show for both traditional and pocket page scrapbookers.

Enjoy the show!

Diana Sanchez – Episode 18

Krista Wells – Episode 19

Crafty Jen Schow – Roundtable – Episode 26

 

Just Between Us Layout

I heart self timers and cooking in the kitchen with my girl

During Ali Edwards’ February Story Kit main presentation,  she asked the viewer to think not only about the people we bond with but also the places  that are close to our heart. For me, bonding with Rowan in the kitchen over the weekends seems to be apart of our regular routine. I loved baking with my mother when I was young and I am so thrilled to share this with my girl. Here is the full view of my layout:

Although I am the family documenter, I don’t always get in the photos. Maybe you can relate? Ha! I could have easily made a page about Rowan and my dad, but this month, I wanted to challenge myself a little. Although the photo is blurry, I still love having the details of this story documented.

Speaking of that blurry photo, it also matched the navy journaling card that came in the kit. Combine it with the other orange and white journaling cards in the kit and my design scenes are tingling!  Here is a closer view of my journaling cards:

Do you bond in the kitchen? If so, who with?

Happy Weekend!

XO Layout

Happy Heart Day Eve!

When it comes to memory keeping, make a lot of pages about my kiddos. With Valentine’s Day happening tomorrow, I was in the mood to scrapbook about the relationship between Aaron and I. I paired our wedding photo and wrote about what is real for us right now / our happily ever after. Spoiler alert: its not grand gestures or fancy trips, it’s the little things! Like when he tells me a joke, or texts me out of the blue for no reason or bringing me home mini eggs without even asking me. A package of mini eggs get me every single time!

Every once and I while I like to bust out of the pocket pages and create a traditional layout in an unconventional 6×8 size…...yes! I really love the smaller canvas. Super easy to create something meaningful. As you can tell from the full size layout, I am trying to channel my inner Cathy Zielske. Ha!  Supplies include: Bazzill Cardstock -White & Cotton Candy Plaid; Maggie Holmes Gather Pattern Paper; XO Digital Element, Ali Edwards February 2017 Digital kit; Simple Stories Enamel Dots; Studio Calico Heart Wood Veneers; Archer Font.

What little things mean the most to you?

Episode 26: Process Videos Roundtable

On today’s roundtable show, I speak with Jen Chapin, Crafty Jen Schow & Tracy Banks about their experience creating process videos. Whether you are new to process videos or are looking to enhance your skills / equipment, this conversation has something for everyone.

Enjoy the show!

Show Notes:

Jen Chapin’s Youtube Video

Jen Chapin’s Favourite Video

Crafty Jen Schow’s Youtube Channel

Crafty Jen Schow’s Favourite Video

Tracy Bank’s Youtube Channel

Tracy Bank’s Scraproom Video Tour

A Love Layout

The many faces of Ro

In the latest roundtable episode of the Pocket Talk podcast, I mentioned that I am creating for Ali Edwards Design this year and I am pretty pumped to be included in that fabulous team of ladies. Here is a layout that I created over the weekend using Ali’s February Digital kit. Lots of great love themed journaling cards. And so, when your almost 5 year old decides to show you her many expressions, you make a page!

This 6 x 8 page came together quickly. I included my 4 favorite photos of Rowan in 6 x 8 canvas in photoshop elements. Any parents of girls will totally understand that moods can change quickly at this age. Heaven help me when she gets older…Ha! I created a simple 3×4 journaling card using the pink heart seen up top and mimicked the ombre colours in a 4×6 journaling card on the bottom. Journaling includes Rowan current loves. Fonts include: georgia & remington noiseless.

What love themed pages have you created lately?

Happy Monday!

Episode 25: Pam Baldwin

On today’s show, I am speaking with the articulate and artistic, Pam Baldwin. Working as a nurse in Hamilton ON, Canada, Pam lives with her husband Brett, and two kids, Liam and Emily. Currently Pam creates for Ali Edwards Design and teaches the online workshop, Text Tricks at BPC. I love Pam’s breath taking work and how she balances her heart felt stories with clean design. In our conversation Pam discuss how interest influences her scrapbooking process and her love of typography. Pam also opens up on she documents motherhood and the messy stories that don’t often get told. I loved chatting with a fellow Canadian!

Enjoy the show!

Shownotes:

6×12 Tough Layout

12 x 12 Tough Layout