Sunday, September 30, 2012

Moon

Tonight we had a spooky looking moon here in Aberdeen.  I attempted to photograph it, and this is my best shot.


Friday, September 28, 2012

Thank-you George....or....My Attempt at Styling the Boys


It’s that time of year again, and by that I mean that it is autumn and we are ramping up into the winter/holiday/Christmas season.  During the autumn and winter, we always seem to be invited to more parties and there are more occasions for dressing up a bit.  I surveyed the wardrobes of Big Boy and Little Boy last weekend and I found them to be a bit lacking…they both have lots of play clothes and casual clothes, but neither had anything that looked particularly smart.  So I decided to buy them each a new outfit for the upcoming parties, events, occasions and photos.

The problem is…I wanted them to have identical outfits.  I love dressing my boys alike for occasions and they still let me, so I plan to keep it up as long as I can get away with it.

Little Boy takes “toddler” sized clothing and Big Boy takes “children” clothing, so I had an issue.  There are not many stores that have the same items in their toddler and children lines.  I looked online and found that most of the clothing stores and department stores in my preferred price range did not have crossover between their lines.  I checked in store at Sainsbury’s and they did have crossover, but there were issues with size availability.  I did not check Tesco because it is too far from my house. 

So…that left ASDA (“Wal-Mart” in North America).  Not only does ASDA carry the same styles for children and toddlers, I actually liked many of the styles and the appropriate sizes were available in store.  On Thursday I went to ASDA and piled my cart high with various sizes of “George” clothing for the boys to try on at home.  We had success with a few of the items and now they each have new outfits for fall.  Each piece of clothing cost around £10 so I spent just under £60 and got each boy the following:

I think my boys will be dapper in this sweater and corduroy pant combo.

This sweater is lined with fleece so it will act as a coat as well.
It has a hidden zip so that the kids don't have to bother with the buttons.

These shoe boots also have a sneaky zip, so the kids don't need to worry about tying every time.



I think they will be very dashing this fall and winter!

Thursday, September 27, 2012

Growing Up Too Fast?


Little Boy is on a roll with language development.  He is learning new words and sounds very quickly.…almost too quickly for me.  He has gone from a handful of single words in his vocabulary to short sentences in the last week or so.

Initially he just parroted the sounds and rhythms of sentence phrasing, but now he is using the words in the correct context.  Yesterday, when I asked him to do something that he didn’t want to do, he told me “it’s not strictly necessary.”  And the context fit!

I’m going to have to start to watch what I’m saying…

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Aberdeen Day

Yesterday was a school holiday for Aberdeen Day, which is also known as "Autumn Holiday."  Unfortunately my husband did not also have the day off, which meant that I was in the position of deciding how to entertain the kids for the day.  Further misfortune came in the form of the weather....it was a dreich day, as they say around here.  I knew that with the weather being so terrible all of the indoor kids activities would be busy (like the local play centres and swimming pools), so I decided to try my best at rainy day activities at home.

We ended up having a great day - we invited friends over for a baking playdate and the kids made muffins for morning snack, buns for lunch and we made a chocolate cake.  We decided to split the layers so that each family had one layer of cake for dessert tonight.  I rounded it out with some homemade soup and we were cozy for most of the day.

I did make a crucial mistake at about 3:30 in the afternoon.  It looked a bit calmer outside, so I asked the kids if they wanted to plant some coloured snowdrop bulbs.  We got outside to start planting and it was freezing cold!  The kids planted quickly and we were back inside in about 15 minutes.

So...back to the baking (smooth segue, I know).  I decided to make a new chocolate cake recipe that I got from the Canadian Living website.  The cake was rich, moist and delicious, but unfortunately it lacked something in the looks department.  Also  the recipe easily made double the icing we needed.  Here are some pictures of our cake....Big Boy was proud as punch of his efforts.


Mmmm....appetizing, no?


Sunday, September 23, 2012

BBQ at Kippie Lodge

This weekend we went to a BBQ at Kippie Lodge, a local country club here in Aberdeen.  I have been to Kippie Lodge before, but today was sunny and bright, so I took some pictures.  Unfortunately, it was a bit chilly - for the adults it was not ideal for an outdoor party, but the kids were running around and enjoying the outdoor equipment so they were fine without jackets.

The playground at Kippie.

Sweeping views from the lawns.


There was a bouncy castle rented for the BBQ -
some of the adults could not help but snicker at the unfortunate name of the rental service company.

Saturday, September 22, 2012

Autumn Walk in Countesswells Forest

Today is September 22 and therefore yesterday was (obviously) September 21, the first day of autumn. It's certainly starting to feel like autumn here in Scotland, there is a nip in the air and the mornings are a bit frosty.  Also the daily rains have started, although the precipitation seems contained to a few showers each day.

This morning we went for a walk in nearby Countesswells Forest (I have blogged a number of times about this wood) and I tried to capture the lovely fall feeling with my doubtful photography skills.  Here are some pictures from today:




I love all of the ferns on the forest floor.

Once we have walked out of the woods into the clearing, the views are sweeping.

There are still some patches of colour.

One lonesome purple thistle flower.



Friday, September 21, 2012

Glam Cosmetic Organiser


Nearly every fall I am inspired to clean and organize my “space.”  This includes my home, car and (when I was working) my office.  We do not have a lot of clutter here in our house, but there is always room for improvement.  I decided to tackle my daily-wear make-up this fall.  I don’t wear a lot of make-up on a daily basis – partly because I’m rushed and partly because my make-up is such a mess.

I have been storing the few items that I use daily in a small tray.  The tray is very small and it is a mess!  I decided to try to find a more organised solution that presents the products so that they are all visible and easy to use.  After researching a few options I decided to purchase the Glam Cosmetic Organiser.  (If you are really interested, here is a link with a picture:  http://www.amazon.co.uk/Glam-HCCO-Cosmetic-Organiser/dp/B0019K9YV6/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1348167243&sr=8-1)

I bought the organiser online and it arrived a couple of days ago in the post.  I was impressed by how durable it seems, I was expecting a flimsy product but this seems to be very sturdy.  So far I am pleased with my purchase.  I have tidied up and here are the results:

Here is the organiser as it arrived.
Unpacked.

Here is my mess...the "before" picture.

Ahhh...all tidied.  And I have space for more cosmetics!  Perhaps a shopping trip is in order.

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Talking Trash Update


This is an update of my post from last week called “Talking Trash” (found at this link: http://janiceljlj.blogspot.co.uk/2012/09/trash-talking.html ).

After we let Big Boy say “My Mama” quite a few times while we quite horribly laughed at him (he thought we were laughing “with” him), my husband eventually corrected him and they practiced “Your Mama.”   My husband also taught Big Boy this strange hand gesture (it makes me think of Kermit the Frog) that is apparently used in sports to indicate something along the lines of “talk to the hand” or "keep talking, it doesn't bother me."  Big Boy had a chance to try out both the actions and words at football this week.

I decided to watch the entire football practice this week.  I found a spot with Little Boy on the chilly bleachers along with the other mums and tried to keep my attention on both Little Boy and the football practice.  For the first half of the practice, the kids learn skills.  The kids at the football are aged kindergarten to grade 2, and generally, the kindergarteners stand aside for the bigger kids.  So during the skills lesson, the kindergarteners (including Big Boy) seem to stand around a lot on the sidelines while the older kids are doing the drills. 

Big Boy was standing around on the side of the field and fiddling with his pinny when a bigger boy came up to him and started talking in his face in a somewhat aggressive manner.  Then the bigger kid started to “hit” at him, which, given the ages of the children involved is a little more like “slapping” than real “hitting.”  After the bigger kid smacked him  once successfully, Big Boy bravely fought back tears and started saying something (he was too far away for me to hear) and then used with the strange hand gesture my husband taught him.  The bigger kid backed off and Big Boy (still not quite crying) trotted over to the coach to tattle on the bigger kid.  The coach sorted it out and there were no further problems.

I asked him after practice what had happened and he said that the big kid was hitting at him (true) so he said “Your Mama” and did the hand gesture.  I asked him what the bigger kid said and he said “nothing, he doesn’t speak English…”

I guess his new phrase was effective…even though the other kid probably had no idea what he was saying! 

If you are wondering where I was throughout this whole incident – I was in the bleachers on the other side of the field.  It all happened pretty quickly, and there was no time for me to intervene (interfere?) so I left it to unfold how it would.