Sunday, February 28, 2010

I love my man.

Mr. Penguin and I have come to an arrangement.  Weekends will now be split between us in the child rearing department - I take Saturday mornings and he takes Sunday mornings.  What does this mean?

It means I slept in today.  Until 10:30am.  No needing to get up to feed the kiddies, no needing to dress them or occupy them -- that was Mr. Penguin's job this morning.  Ahhhhh.  I love my kids, I really do. 

But sleep ranks pretty high on my list of loves too. if only I could get him to bring me my tea in bed in the Sundays to come, I'd be set!


Saturday, February 27, 2010

Grocery shopping.

I think I could be admitted to a mental institute today.  I decided, on a SATURDAY, to take not one, but TWO kids to the grocery store. 

Yes I did. 

Why?  Well apparently I'm missing some sort of thrill in my life that involves navigating a cart in small aisles around half the city, most of who don't know how to be courteous or even seem to notice that they are rude and not the only people on the planet.

Take, for instance, the man I was caught behind in the canned aisle.  As well as the cleaning aisle, fruit aisle and also in the self check out aisle.  Seriously, I didn't follow him!  I purposely took an alternative route.  If he went left, I went right...but somehow I ended up behind him at every turn.  This man was in his own world.  Like outer space.  He had his son with him who could have been 10? 12? who was bored out of his tree.  And blocking the aisle so I couldn't get by -- but that's another issue. 

The Dad figure had a list - which I'm assuming was a grocery list - about 4 inches from his face at all times.  He'd stop to inspect cans, verify the list, check the can again, put it down, pick up another get the idea.  Either he's really slow or his wife if VERY specific on what type of canned tuna he should bring home.  I managed to get away from him only to find him again in the cleaning aisle - doing the same actions with the laundry detergent.  Once I stumbled into the same line at the self checkout that he was in I knew karma was kicking my butt for something I've done recently.  He would pick up a bag, inspect it, enter the code manually, weigh it, check the screen, pick it up, verify again and THEN put it in his basket.  He had a full cart of groceries.

Yeah..........The self checkout was created for those who have few groceries, can work technology and so that people could be processed faster.  This guy was the opposite of all of that.  I wanted to cry.

I've learned my lesson.  Saturdays will never again be spent with both kids grocery shopping.  I don't care if we have to eat KD for each meal all weekend long - it'll be worth it.  You know what the worst part is?!  We don't even NEED anything.  It was all for routine stuff to fill the pantry and make sure I had all my veggies for the week to come -- no biggie.

I'm so glad I picked up those chocolate covered pretzels on my way out.  They helped ease my stress on the way home.


Friday, February 26, 2010

Eat the seasons.

Eat what is in season.  Simple.  Effective.  Healthy.


Thursday, February 25, 2010

To gym or not to gym?

I'm heading back to work next month.  I'm looking forward to it.  All the interaction with adults and paperwork to make me feel like a grown-up.  It'll be a nice change of pace, even if I do have to get up at an ungodly hour to have it all. 

Which made me think of my other adult decision - to live a healthier life style, everyday.

At the other end of the street from my new workplace is a gym.  I took a tour today and saw what it had to offer.  But am I gym material?  <--- that is the REAL question.  It sounds nice to say you are a member of a gym and that you're working on "fitness goals" and being the healthiest you can be -- but what if you sign up with good intentions...and then don't go?  It's not like my gym membership card will melt the fat away from inside my wallet (wouldn't that be amazing!) or make me feel better about myself.  It's real money being taken out of my/our account the gym's hydro bill?  Make sure my name is registered somewhere?  Get cheap childcare while I grocery shop?

I like the idea of going to the gym.  But will I go consistently?  Probably not.


Ok, so I answered my own damn question.

Wednesday, February 24, 2010


I have quite a few goals for this year:

  • To make my new job into something I will love and be proud of for years to come.
  • To get healthier than I was raised and have become -- making exercise a daily occurrence for me and the family and good food the norm.
  • To show my darling babies new things.
  • To get out with Mr. Penguin and try at least 2 new things.
  • To make our house into a warm and inviting sanctuary...and actually be able to find the floor in all of its rooms.
  • To keep discovering who I am, what I love and what it means to be me -- which includes taking some sort of class.
  • To continue learning about photography, how to edit photos and utilizing our camera to its full potential so I can continue with our plans for a side business.
  • To be ready for October.
  • To continue with my scrapbooks so that I can preserve our cherished memories for years to come.

........................and the list goes on and on.

For this coming month of March, I'd like to edit some of the photos I've taken.

This requires some more studying of Gimp on my part.  I'd like to make this shot into something amazing that I can frame for our office.  It just screams home to me and I want to have it where I can see it -- but looking its best of course.  ;)

And I also want to finish my Mom's Xmas gift in March -- the one for 2009 that I didn't have time to finish in time.  Oops.  I am finishing a half-stitch that she started when pregnant with me.  It was of a boy and girl praying.  She 'ruined' it (her words, not mine) and cut off the boy part she had started.  Funny enough that left the girl part -- and then she had me and kept it for 18 years.  LOL  I had to restart the stitch as I ran out of the original blue wool it came with.  So now I've updated the blue to a emerald teal-ish color and am hoping to frame it and give it to her.  I thought it would be something really meaningful and sentimental.

She probably won't even know where it came from.
Oh well.
It's still a gift!

Have a good hump day!

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

I'm a walking zombie.

The baby sleep war continues...I think she's getting teeth or at least practicing her "I'm being murdered" cries.  My eyes are going to fall out of my head this week I think.

In the meantime -- some happiness and joy.  I'm currently making up our wedding photo books and added this picture above the invite text.

That's me and Mr. Penguin at the front.  It was such a wonderful day.

.................Ok, back to reality and a crazy baby.  Later!


Road tripping.

We're on the road. We were on the road last weekend too. Vacations can be great, but they can also be worth more hassle than any relaxation that you think you might get. I'm having one of those 'vacations'.

It started out fine enough. Then we lost a day to helping the in-laws with their broken vehicle. Then Mr. Penguin was out visiting friends and in business meetings so we had limited time together. Then I had a mini melt down from staying at the in-laws by myself with the baby penguin and it being inconvenient. You know, the usual fun vacation-y stuff. ;) So I'm really excited to be getting home tomorrow.


I start my new job on Monday. In hind sight, taking a vacation the week before starting a new position might not have been the brightest of ideas. I'm a little stressed about the getting ready I still have to do...which is probably why the vacation felt stressful. :(

I hope Mr. Penguin enjoyed catching up with his friends. Someone should have enjoyed it.


Monday, February 22, 2010

Quick note.

Today I have some motivation -- so I'm going to go with it while it's still here.  ;)

Off to make vanilla muffins, cheesy beer bread, egg salad for lunches tomorrow and clean the kitchen!


Have a good one.

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Bumps in the road.

Life isn't always smooth. It can be wonderful and exciting...but it can also suck ass sometimes too. Nothing major, just a day or two that you'd like to redo or take back or delete altogether.

Ever have one of those days?

I've been getting that feeling in the air. From friends, from the blogs and forums I frequent... I think people are just ready for spring. Antsy and irritable -- that's the feeling. Like we're all still stuck with the tail end of winter (with more snow now in the forecast) and just can't wait until we have sun and grass and flowers.  Wouldn't that be wonderful?  Then I can actually start to wear the new clothes I've been buying myself since losing weight.  That would be nice.  Shed the layers of cold weather clothing and dance around in pretty shoes and a cute skirt...can you feel it?

That's happiness.  

The beginning of spring may be crappy with it's rain and puddles and cold winds...but you know what?  It ain't winter.


Saturday, February 20, 2010

Balloon ride.

I came across our balloon ride photos this afternoon as I scoured my laptop for photos for my scrapbooks...

Mr. Penguin and I took a hot air balloon ride on what we call our Independence Day (ie - the day we both changed our lived for the better).  What an experience!  We were the only people (us and the 9 others on board) who got to see the sun that day -- it was cloudy in the city.  Amazing.


It was freeing and thrilling and wonderful...PERFECT for the occasion.   
These I am printing.

 Our Independence Day is still a few months off, but it got me thinking about what I'd like to share with my man this year.  We've talked about rafting -- that would be fun!  Last year I gave birth to our daughter...not exactly planned for the occasion, but it was an adventure of sorts!  We'll see what we can come up with.  

I believe trying new things and just experiencing what life has to offer as a couple brings an element of excitement to the relationship.  However I write this from my office on a Saturday in which we've done nothing but crawl out of bed, eat KD and then browse the take it for what it's worth.


So many do-dos!

We're having a test of sanity this morning. Baby penguin decided sleep was unnecessary in life -- at least for the parental type. I've had 4 hours of broken sleep. I'm pretty sure I could double for a zombie right now. Mr. Penguin is still dozing as I sacrificed myself and am lying on the couch half dead (aren't I the most loving, wonderful wife?! Don't worry there will be chocolate in my future for this) while the energetic WELL RESTED little one plays in her Jumperoo.

At least SOMEONE is a morning person.


Friday, February 19, 2010


17 random things about me:

1) I love the smell of fresh laundry.
2) I'm craving dried cranberries, peanuts and yogurt right now.
3) I'm a brunette.
4) I produce cute babies.  ;)
5) I can't wait to get my T4 so I can complete my taxes this year.  No, I'm not completely mental -- I'm expecting a return.
6) I bought a new purse today -- and picked one from my collection to sell.
7) I made a scrapbooking kit last night to complete my page of the week this weekend.  It's going to be of the girls...too cute!
8) I am excited for Mr. Penguin to get home so I can huff him (well, hug and kiss him too).  LOL  It's one of my favorite times of day.  :)
9) I'm currently wearing my blue Crocs.
10) My emerald green suede shoes make me smile.  Where's spring so I can wear them?!
11) I'm making homemade chili for tomorrow night -- Mr. Penguin's fav
12) I'm a Flybaby...starting over...for like the 20th time.
13) I have added this song to my download list.
14) I need a manicure -- badly.
15) I am super excited that I have bought my own lunch things -- Tupperware containers, a glass container for microwaving, a coffee mug, etc. -- for when I go back to work.  I'm not kidding, I'm totally excited.  LOL
16) I cleaned the tub today.  Woo!
17) Green is my favorite colour.  I surround myself with touches of it to make me smile daily.


First trip home in 2010.

The Penguin family heads back East a couple times a year to our home town.  We look forward to each and every trip.  The first for 2010 is coming next month!  :)  It'll still be cold and probably still have snow...but we'll see OCEAN baby!  And that's all that matters in the end.

There is nothing like the smell of salt water.  *sniff!*

It's the last trip before I go back to work, so it's extra special.  Visiting friends, touring the sites, seeing some family...what a way to end my mat leave!  We're also bringing baby penguin to see the lighthouse for the first time.  It's a 'rite of passage' of sorts in the penguin household -- one me and Mr. Penguin treasure.

I think I'll be dancing a little bit more in the coming weeks...bring on March!


Wednesday, February 17, 2010


I LOVE to scrapbook.  I have tons of stuff to scrapbook.  Have I really been scrapbooking the past 4 years?  Eh.....not really.  Here's my one page for 2009:

 It's the ultrasound for baby penguin.  She was born in July of last year -- you do the math.  I'm not exactly what you'd call up-to-date.  LOL

It's time to get back into it.  I went to a friend's place today and completed a page of me and the kids from the wedding.  I like it -- I must make more.  My new goal is to make a page a week.  Simple, yet productive.  I have such great photos of the kids and Mr. Penguin and I...they should be in nice albums, not stuck in boxes or forever stored on my laptop.

I may post them from time to time, but for now I'm putting the goal out there to help keep me motivated.


Tuesday, February 16, 2010

What's your theme song?

Do you have a theme song?  A tune that follows you through life?  One that picks you up when you're blue or one you've been humming in the shower for years?  The hubby and I were discussing this today -- we're odd, you'll just have to get over it.

I have created songs for both my girls that I sing to them.  The eldest has the 'Itsy, Bitsy Spider' with hand signs.  It calms her down no matter what -- she zones right out.  I've been singing it since she was a little infant.  As for the baby, I've personalized the tune of 'Yankee Doodle' with a variation of her name.  :D  She loves it and smiles and bounces whenever I sing it to her.

Now Mr. Penguin thinks I'm cute for all my singing.  Whatever.  :P  I told him that *I* have a theme song that follows me through life, why not the girls?  He wanted to know what it was, but I think I'll let him guess a few years longer...LOL  He said he doesn't have one.  Do you?

For as long as I can remember (going on 10+ years now?) whenever I step into the shower in the morning, I start belting out my theme song in my head.  If I'm home alone I'll play it on the iPod at full blast and sing along.  I don't know why -- it does make me smile though.

I suggest a theme song for everyone.  It doesn't have to be popular or even have words to it.  Just something that speaks to who you are or maybe makes you feel happy/loved/special/whatever.

Happy singing!


I'm a procrastinator.  It's a fancy word meaning lazy person.  I've lived with it all my life.  I used to tell myself that the crunch of just having enough time was great motivation and I produced my best school work, etc.  Not entirely true, but I keep doing it!

Today I am avoiding the kitchen.  I have a love/hate relationship with my kitchen.  Cooking and baking are my therapies and I love creating new meals for my family to try.  I, however, HATE cleaning the kitchen.  I always seem to start cleaning it and while I'm putting something away and my back is turned -- WHAM! -- it's a pig pen again!  How does that happen!?  Ugh.  So the kitchen and I have been having issues for the past week.  Ok, I lied, it's more like several weeks, but still. 

I dream of a kitchen that does it's own dishes.  Yes, I have a dishwasher -- but *I* still have to load and unload it.  I think I could produce some amazing things in that kitchen of mine if it weren't for the mess after wards.  I think it's limiting my potential.  ;)

Ok, I should get off my lazy butt and just clean it.  And I will...right after I start the laundry and have a shower...maybe.


Monday, February 15, 2010

I heart VW.

I fell in love with a car today.  Yup, I did.  :)  

I sat in a relatively normal car and was reasonably impressed with it's interior.  Then I glanced upwards and noticed the most amazing thing...a sunroof that took up the entire roof.  Wow.  Me like very much.

The 2011 VW TDI Diesel Engine Golf Wagon will be the new penguin-mobile come October.  It will also be the very first car I've ever ordered from the factory.  I can hardly wait. 

It's official...I heart VW.


Tea for the soul.

Tea is such a wondrous thing. It can calm and relax; it can rejuvinate and clear the mind; it can start or end a day. In our household, a cup of tea is essential.

Mr. Penguin and I share at least one cup of tea a day together -- it helps us connect for a few quiet moments. I highly recommend to all to spend a few minutes relaxing each day with a hot cup of happiness. :)

Tetley is our usual tea, but in the past few years we've expanded our tea experiences to varieties of decaf, herbal and also loose leaf teas. One of my current favorites is the apple streudel loose leaf blend from Teaopia. It's wonderful!  That and my lemon Ginger tea...perfection in a cup.

However, if you seek organic excellence, I recommend checking out the choice at Tea Forté. We used their tea at our Penguin wedding as favors and take it out for special evenings every once in a while.  EXCELLENT. I've added some of the non-black teas to my 'must try' list for future purchases.

Well, I'm almost done my morning cup and ready to start the rest of my day. Have a good one.


Sunday, February 14, 2010

What...pools aren't romantic?!

Well, the penguin family went to the public pool today for a swim in the waves.  That's romance right there, I tell ya.  ;) Spending over an hour at home getting ready (finding bathing suits, packing all gear for an infant and a pre-schooler and then loading it all into the van), another 20 mins prepping to get into the pool and then -- after only an hour of swimming -- spending another 40 mins trying to shower, dress and leave. I need a vacation! Wait, I just had one, didn't I? :( There should be government funding to send Moms away on paid, all-inclusive vacations...or better yet, just build a government funded vacation spot that all Moms get sent to after month 6 so they don't lose their minds! Now we're talking!! I should research who to bring this to...I'm sure the Canadian government would be ALL over this! Oh one can dream.

You know, even after all that, today was fun. The girls thoroughly enjoyed themselves too. It was the baby penguin's first time in a pool. She did quite well! No crying, no fussing. She loved the warmer pool and liked lying on her back while I swooshed her around. And the pre-schooler monkey loved hopping waves with both me and Mr. Penguin. She didn't want to get out. It made the whole ordeal to get there totally worth it.

Now 'love day' isn't over. After I'm done emptying my thoughts out here I'm finishing the dishes (oh baby) and baking some cheesy beer bread -- sooooo good -- then I'm making a chocolate fondue for myself and the hubby to enjoy with our first bottle of wine since the birth of baby penguin! I'm not a drinker, but I miss those candlelight dinners with a nice glass of wine...just makes the evening extra special.

And as per usual I should get my card before bed...Mr. Penguin has always saved my cards to be the last thing of the day. Don't tell him, but I actually like it that way. Such a wonderful way to end the day...


Saturday, February 13, 2010

I'll take that...and that...ooh! and one of those too!

My birthday night away was amazing.  Mr. Penguin took me to a cute little ski resort town about 2 hours from home for the night.  The hotel was beautiful!  Our room had a giant king size bed and a fireplace and jacuzzi was wonderful.  We slept in and woke up on our own...not to an alarm or kids screaming!  Aaaahh.  Amazing what 8 hours of straight sleep can do for the soul.

In the morning I was greeted with the rest of my gift.  We were going shopping all day -- for me.  I could browse and buy what I wanted, no questions asked.  I came home with a skirt, a top, 2 pairs of shoes, a purse, and a lunch container (I'm starting my new job soon).  It was so much fun!  I don't think I've ever been given that indulgence before.  I recommend!  LOL

In the end, it wasn't the hotel room or the things I bought that made this a great birthday.  It was spending it with my penguin just being us.

And not having the kids around didn't hurt either...


Friday, February 12, 2010

Shhhhhhhhh...hear that?'s called a night away from the kids!  LOL

I am currently packing (or attempting to) for my birthday night away from our two kids.  If you could see the giant smile on my goofy face!  I haven't had a childless night in over 6 months.  This is deserved...and I am so excited!  And the best part?!  Mr. Penguin planned it all.  :)  I know the location is 2 hours away, I know we're not getting back until tomorrow night at 7:30pm and I know to bring my "sexy butt" as Mr. Penguin so romantically put it.

Hope everyone has a wonderful Valentine's weekend!  Whether a cup of tea among friends, a card to your grandmother or a glass of wine in front of the fire with your special someone...make the most of it.  Declare your love people!


Thursday, February 11, 2010

The art of canning.

I've always been interested in anything that makes life simpler...or more homemade.  I enjoy the idea of making things from scratch and living off of what's around me and my family.  This is how canning my own stuff came to be a new fascination.  ;)

I started in 2004 with the traditional jams -- strawberry and raspberry...which turned into peach & cherry jam and blueberry & pineapple jam.  It was quite fun!  I made sure to make them in the littlest jars possible so that I could rotate the flavors frequently.

Then I pickled carrots -- which is on the list again for this year.  If you haven't tried them you are seriously missing out!  I am a dill pickle lover and I'd reach for these first any day (unless it was for a cheese and dill pickle sandwich.....mmmmmmmmm...).

So this year I discovered the Preserves cookbook by 'Company's Coming' and want to try out as many of the recipes as possible.  Ideally, I'd like to have my own veggie garden that will supply for our family during the summer and produce enough to can for most, if not all, the winter.  Ideally.  So I looked through and have marked a bunch of basics to try.  We'll see how it goes.  I figure starting now, in February, I'll at least figure out what not to waste my hard grown veggies on.  :D

So far I've canned my own tomatoes to be used in sauces and my homemade chili recipe.  It was simple enough and looks yummy!  I'll have to see the final result when I open the cans.  But for now it's a start.