sentimental style {small style}

i am so very proud of myself.  i took my first, second & third load of clothes to boomerang kids (an upper end ottawa children's consignment store).  i am proud because the task confronted two of my greatest challenges, rejection/social awkwardness & sentimentality.  it is a sad moment when you realize how much your identity is tied up children's clothing.  it's the memories & bonding that happened in those little onesies & booties.  it's how i concretely remember their size & smell, evidence of how i cared & loved them.  and then to lay it all out on the table for someone to scrutinize every inch of fabric & goodness forbid reject a piece or two... well, you can imagine.  i had prepared myself that just because a piece of clothing is rejected does not mean i am rejected.  i did have a few moments of anx where my defensive instincts began to creep up on me, but i resisted, survived & have fuller pockets because of it!
as a stay-at-home mom, i see it as my job to stretch a buck as far as i can.  this is one of those ways that, if i am organized & can get over my sentimental rejection complex, earn a few bucks.  this particular store offers cash or store credit which i really like because i can use it to buy whatever the kids need - toys, clothing, books or take the cash & spend it on diapers or groceries.
anyways, long story short, a way that helped me let go of a few extra special pieces of clothing was to make sure i had photos of the kids wearing them. i thought it might be neat to celebrate this process of letting go by having a few style flashback editions of {small style}.

here's a favourite.  my mom gave me this onesie before davith was born.  it says 'mon petit chute' on the front which means 'my little cabbage'.  it's what my mom used to call me as a babe.  this is what davith was wearing the day the twins were born. sniff, sniff... smile.

dav, nan & the ducks... both his favourites

he had just started walking the
week the twins arrived

little did he know his entire world just changed

little did he know he would soon
be kicked to the boot of the stroller

he loves his auntie mekr
onesie: joe fresh, slippers: joe fresh, jeans: joe fresh


fibre-licious pancakes

not unlike muffins, my kids LOVE pancakes.  we've eaten them for just about every meal of the day.  i love tripling batches of pancakes & then storing them in the freezer to be taken out & warmed up in the toaster on some chaotic morning.  and not unlike muffins, i have learned how to hide a good dose of fibre-licious veggies.  i learned this enriching principle from the wonderfully creative jessica seinfeld and now i have adopted this strategy to most of my baked goods.  another super strategy i have learned over the years is hiding protein in all of my kids favourites.  especially with my girls, who don't eat very much, every bite must count.  so here are two of our favourite FAVOURITE pancake recipes! even i love the pumpkin pancakes!

high protein pumpkin pancakes
1/2 cup cottage cheese (i use no fat cottage cheese)
1/2 cup pumpkin puree
3/4 cup dry oats
2 eggs
1 tbsp canola oil ( is use safflower oil)
1 tsp pumpkin pie spice (if you don't have on hand just mix together some cinnamon, nutmeg & allspice)
1 tsp vanilla

blend all ingredients in blender until well mixed.  if batter is not thin enough, add a touch of water or milk (i always end up adding 1/2 cup of almond milk to make it nice & creamy) to get it the consistency of pancake batter.  pour by the tbsp onto the griddle (tbsp make tiny little pancakes, nice for little fingers).  make sure you cook these long enough that the centre gets mostly cooked.  top with real maple syrup (did you know that real maple syrup has micronutrients... i love justifying sugary goodness to my benefit!)
( i double this recipe to have enough for my three pancake-aholics... and there still never seems to be any left).

veggie pancakes
makes 10-12 medium pancakes
1 1/2 cups whole grain flour
1 tsp baking powder
1 1/2 cups of milk (i use almond milk)
3 beaten eggs
3 cups shredded veggies*
* many different veggies will work.  i mostly use a combination of zucchini & carrot.  i think sweet potato would be great too. (i puree then in the bullet to give a nice consistency)

preheat griddle over medium low heat.  in a medium bowl, mix together the dry ingredients.  in separate bowl add milk & beaten eggs.  add wet & dry ingredients & stir in the shredded veggies.
add about a tsp of oil or butter to grease (i put olive oil in a spritz bottle just for greasing pans & muffin tins) unless you are cooking on a non-stick pan.  using a 1/4 measuring cup, pour the batter onto the hot pan.  use the back of the cup to help the batter spread evenly.  cook for 2-4 minutes & then flip and repeat.  you'll know when it's time to flip when bubbles rise to the surface. enjoy!

* a neat tip to jazz up the unassuming pancake is to use giant cookie cutters or sandwich cutters from dollarama to cut out neat shapes.


cheers to the goodlife!

my awesome friend & trainer, christena
so as you may remember a little while back, i sent in my goodlife success story with fingers crossed... and i won! thanks to all of the wonderful support from my lovely gym community! and a huge thank you to my trainer turned friend who pushed me through my crazy carb cravings & silly excuses, through the cruel aroma of fresh baked goods leaking through the gym vents from the bakery below, through sweat & tears & truckloads of hormones!  i couldn't have done it without her! i blush every time i look at the giant novelty sized check or my published story (especially the picture they chose... not my fav) but i feel so very encouraged to continue in my pursuit of health & wellness.  it wasn't easy but now 9 months postpartum after baby #4, the scale finally makes me smile & so do the four sweet little faces around the breakfast table as i plan each day to be more healthy & strong.  we are never done being better.  there is always a goal to reach for.  and i am ever so excited to continue the journey.
cheers to the goodlife!

here is the published version of the story!

and a little inspiration for those just starting out on their own journey... you can't possibly feel self-conscious at the gym after watching this! (that blue leotard is one of the main reasons i go to a women's only gym! yikes!) who knows, maybe my next contest should be a real contest like this... minus the unitards & choreography.


my little mighty {letters to davith}

it's bedtime.  book time.  your favourite time.  you love filling your head with outlandish books & wild ideas, far off lands & strange new beasts.  you burrow down deep under your comforter & fold your arms across your chest ready to taste & breath the unconquered world.
we've started reading a new book.  an intentional book.  a sowing book.  it is well beyond your age & i know this but i am sowing like a wise farmer does.  i begin to unfold it's pages of truth & you're wide eyed but quiet trying to make sense, to cull it's meaning into your world. it is a letter from God to you. i read to you of your heritage, of the legacy you follow...
"my mighty warrior, i have a powerful plan for you, my son.  i know you are just a young boy, but so was king david when i chose him to become the future king.  little did he know, while he was faithfully protecting & caring for the sheep, that i was preparing him to protect & care for my people one day..."
i pause for a moment.  you're pensive, taking it all in.  i can see the seed of greatness germinating deep down inside.
"do you think you would like to protect & care for God's people one day?"
"yeah mom.  i could wake them up in the morning & make them waffles for breakfast & i could take them to the bathroom so they won't be scared & i could tuck them in..."

oh yes davith benjamin.  you will wake many from their slumber, you will feed the hungry something much longer lasting than waffles & you will be an arm of comfort to those terrorized by fear. and being faithful in the little will turn great, the small, seemingly insignificant will expand into everlasting bread.  you follow the steps of him whom you were named after, king david.  but you will do greater things, oh mighty warrior.  greater than the boy who killed giants with nothing more than a sling shot, tackled bears & lions with his bare hands.  the boy who became a king one day. the same boy who tended the sheep, who serenaded the King of kings with his song in an empty field.  do not despite small beginnings my son, for He has a plan & a purpose.  nothing is wasted or lost in His kingdom.  i know you are still little but you are mighty because of Him.  
you & that ferocious appetite for adventure are going to conquer the world.


happy belated

happy belated blog post! and what better occasion to catch up a belated birthday! the twins second birthday was on mother's day this year. it was a busy weekend so we just decided to keep everything low key with just the fam & it was delightful!  the twins had a ball & so did the rest of us without the distraction of guests & decorations & food.  just good ol' fashion fun enjoying each others company.   here is a little video of their birthday dinner & some pics of our family festivities...


beautiful blessings, ugly doors

 my husband travels from time to time.  it's an integral part of his God given calling.  it's not my favourite part but it is a necessary part.  this is challenging for us at the stage of family life we are at.  i have found myself at a crossroads of seeing & understanding the need for travel but also feeling the weight of carrying family life while steve is gone. in previous travels & trips, that weight has been crushing.  but these past few travels & trips have been a revelation to me.  they have been a gift i could not have gone without.

my first revelation was in seeing it all as a gift.  i have been reluctant or resistant to giving in this area of my life. it is a sweaty, stinky, ugly sacrifice.  there is nothing romantic about sleepless nights, shower-less days, piles of poop & constant single-handed disciplining.  i think i had subconsciously decided that because i was reluctant to giving in that area, i had to exaggerate my sacrifice to make it count for more.  i had to make a choice.  a choice to receive His provision not a choice to see the sacrifice, to see the lack.   to see that Christ increases in the situation not the anti-Christ.  i previously have not wanted to see God's provision because it was not the way i preferred Him to provide.  i wanted Him to provide through Steve & to be honest, i really do love to play victim occasionally.  God doesn't conceal blessings from us but for us.  and sometimes He hides it in places we don't want to look like places sacrifice.  beautiful gifts are found behind ugly doors.  heaven's treasure buried beneath uncomfortable places.

we always discuss trips together, submitting to each others needs & desires & convictions.  but when i began to seek & hear God myself as to the purpose of the trip, i can go forth out of my own convictions. i then felt as though i had played a crucial role in God's purpose by releasing him to go.  after i had processed in my spirit to release steve to do something, then my heart & mind followed.  it completely deflated the opportunity for resentment & opened the door to joy & peace. the process of releasing him has been crucial in my journey.  when there is joy & peace in my heart rather than resentment, i believe it has opened heaven's outpouring of God's resources for me & i have been in a better place to see & receive it.  i provide the sacrifice, He provides the fire.  tipping resentment & pain on it's head & turning in, instead of away from God my Father.  it's that sweetly surrendered place of intimacy with the Lord.  sometimes when steve returns from his travels, i ache & crave the times of sole reliance on the Father.  i don't ever want that passionate pursuit of Him to fade as i have the opportunity to lean on other things.  even God given things like my husband.

it is the ugly turned beautiful. pain transformed into healing.  lack transpired into abundance.

*part deux still to come on this theme of sacrifice... i have learned so much over the past year, too much to fit in just one blog post... stay tuned!