Easter has always been a very special holiday to me. Since my family were all over the place this year I decided to take two of my kiddos and do a little road trip to celebrate with some of our dearest friends in Squamish, Whistler and Pemberton.
The story of Easter is based on God giving us the greatest gift anyone could give...their only son. In the bible on this day Jesus rises and God gives man the gift of eternal life. It's pretty powerful if you think about it and whatever your beliefs its something to ponder.
I am so grateful for you all friends and this amazing life we have been given here on earth. Easter blessings to you and yours, I hope your day is filled with love and appreciation and of course chocolate!
The world of children's literature and illustration is a never ending source of fascination and pleasure for me.
Cuddling with a child who is silent and still with wonder enjoying a book is a moment beyond words. Little hands resting on you, soft breath on your skin and wispy hair against your cheek. My boys all have shared my love of books and the library and reading. Nothing makes me happier than finding a magical new read to enjoy together. Recently I stumbled upon a brilliant concept with mesmerizing art. The best thing is personalized, the story is all about your own child and how they find their name.
As soon as I saw the facebook page for lostmy.name I was hooked by the concept and the images. Take a look and give them a like...this project is destined for greatness. The creators also have a nicely done blog and lovely lostmy.name web page where you can go to order books for all the special kiddos in your life.
I ordered three books my first round and each is unique and so special. This book will be my new gift of choice for babies, birthdays and any other excuse I can find to share it. The quality of every aspect of this project is beautiful. As you can see in this photograph Ryan was so thrilled...we have read it over and over since and it never fails to entertain him.
Read below about the marvelous man clan that brought this magical book to life...
We are three dads (David, Pedro &Asi) and an uncle (Tal). One day, we decided to make the best personalised book ever, about a little boy or girl who lost (and then found) their name. How hard could it be?
Well… It turned out that there are 14,000 children’s names. Meaning that, to be able to make books about every child’s name, we had to write over 30 stories. Well over 150 illustrations. Then there was the technology and coding behind the scenes. Printing and shipping. How hard could it be? Quite hard.
But we got there. And getting there was fun. Everybody involved has been a friend, everything we’ve done, we’ve done because we loved doing it. And that, we think, is what makes the book so special. Almost as special, we hope, as the little boy or girl who receives it.
If you like the book, we’d really appreciate it if you’d share it with your family, friends, readers, followers. And of course, all feedback is more than welcome.
The Lostmy.name team
Here is the pages for R, one of the letters Ryan discovers in his book. He meets a robot. Each letter is presented by a unique animal, thing or mythical being. He especially loved the Y page and meeting a Yeti!
Stay tuned friends for a Snickerdoodles discount code to order your own lostmy.name books.
Until then get busy liking their facebook page, suggesting it to others who would enjoy, visit the blog and webpage...you won't be disappointed.
How about you...any other Moms out there willing to come clean?
She is such a funny actress and this cute kid kills me with his adorable ways.
Yikes...last night I threw up a profile quick to see what it showed up like, and got distracted with kiddos and never came back to see the image full size. It was one from my shoot with Amanda Huston and it was slightly risque. Sorry...just started working and saw the window open with the download and did some serious blushing. All cropped up nice and respectable now. Sorry to those I might of had wondering last night, if you even noticed. For those who missed it, too bad...no bum peeks for you unless you tick me off one day on the lake and I have to moon you from my paddleboard!
Still waiting to share a juicy new kids read once I get a delightful little discount code activated for you.
Easter road trip confirmed...packing up the Mini Man Clan and hitting Squamish/Whistler/Pemberton to celebrate with some of the best people I know and bringing the Okanagan sunshine, warm weather, a car full of bunnies and my newest camera lens with me. Wooo Hooo!
p.s. A book review you won't want to miss if you love childrens literature and illustrations as much as I do is in the works with a discount code...stay tuned friends.
Ry recently turned 7 and was over the moon excited to have a birthday party. He wanted a Lego themed party which seems to be so popular lately but it was his day so I was onboard.
As it was fairly last minute right after spring break it had to be done fairly simple and I did't have a huge budget. We used some generic invites I got from Indigo on 80% off clearance by Pistachio...a seriously eco friendly printing company. They were my fave green and cheery and simple enough for a kids party and $2 for 10! Invites out on Wednesday party for Sunday...yikes.
Before the kiddos came I set the table...I LOVE setting tables. I had a little cloth I bought from a friend that sorta worked and just simple paper plates I added Lego faces too. Paper cups and old fashioned paper straws as they are a cuteness weakness of mine. Could have done so much more but really once eleven seven year old sit down the table is destined to be trashed.
In the middle I set up a little game to keep them busy while waiting for cake. They liked it. Little pieces of paper and felts were left for them to use to write their names and guess and they took turns sharing.
The main event ws the cake which I definitely am not capable of making like this. I hired an local gal Amy Gervais who is so talented to tackle that. I love making deserts but I didn't want to be stressing off a Pinterest fail on Ry's day. Amy rocked it. If you are in the Okanagan I recommend her for cakes and cupcakes for special events...it was lovely and yummy.
Once the kids arrived we headed downstairs for a major Lego play...I layed out quilts and sat them in a circle and dumped all the baskets of Lego in the middle and they went at it. They liked it so much many chose not to do the craft I planned and kept building. They were all together though and it was fun...they munched Ry's fave snack foods while they worked.
I used up all the leftover science fair poster board pieces my other boys to cut out Lego man parts so the kids could assemble their own and decorate it with sharpies and dot stickers. Ry made the sample man shown and it was easy but complicated enough to satisfy 7 year old crafty kids...they made some cute creations.
After a good play we took them upstairs again for cake, ice cream and and presents.
Sparklers made the cake very exciting for them, it was sweet.
And look at all those smiley, giggly kiddos...so adorable. Ry was a very happy fellow and loving all the festivities.
The gifts party at kiddo parties is always mayhem, as much as you try to keep it humble and calm...they can't control themselves. You just gotta go with it and make sure no one gets trampled.
But the buddy hugs and huddles make it all so worth it. Ry is in the middle of this group love session. I think he was pretty darn grateful for his friends, the fun and his gifts.
As the party ended we headed outside for a little spring play in the sun and I gave them their goody bags as they were picked up.
They were used as decorations on the buffet for the party and did double duty. Just coloured paper bags decorated with dot stickers to look like Lego bricks, and tied with bakers twine I had. Inside I placed a Lego minifigure, a lollypop, some Lego candies, a little fingerlight, and a trading card.
I did a few other little decorations as well. Everything was simple and inexpensive and done within a couple fun hours.
Lego head balloons...
On Ry's actual birthday I suprised him at school with a bunch of seven hellium ballons. Being the frugal sneak I am, and yellow lover I intentionally picked simple yellow ones with the idea I would add Lego faces and use them as party decorations a few days later. I just used a Sharpie to draw face ideas I got off Lego minifigures...cleaned up the bottom of the balloon and stick with tape and covered it with a cheery ribbon bow. Then I took small balls of plasticine and stuck them to the bottom of big mason jars to hold the balloon stick securly and filled the jar with lego blocks.
Total cost $14 as I found the balloons already blown up at Dollerama and had the other stuff already.
Lego block banner decoration...
This is a terrible photo as I took it quick late last night. I did this so last minute but it was a fun way to welcome the kids at the front door before they saw the other decorations. Three pieces of bristol board cut into rectangles. The I used a mason jar lid to trace the circles and a hole punch to string them on a long piece of ribbon I had. The colours were bright and cheery despite this wretched photo.
Had I had an hour to spare the Martha Stewart in me would have liked to write LEGO inside each traced circle but I let that go as no seven year old would notice anyways and really the shindig was for them.
So that's it. One little boys Lego party done quickly, inexpensively and stress free. It wasn't easy to resisit the hundreds of amazing ideas calling my name on Pinterst and not become a kid birthday Momzilla but I did it...and I had the happiest little love bug give me the best thank-yous that night as my reward.
Lego is amazing...all my boys love it still and have loved it forever. So grateful for this timeless toy. It's such a staple in this house full of boys I have a Lego Love board on Pinterst we go to often for ideas...if your clan loves Lego too take a look and enjoy.
Gently doing party prep for Ry's Lego Party tomorrow and contemplating this tidbit of Eckhart brilliance.
I Farmed out the cake to a local talent from Cupcake Envy and carefully choosing how to spend my day and stepping away from everything complicated and towards everything that feels right. Realizing after fifteen years of being a Mom that less is always more...less stuff, less activities, less stress = more LOVE...
The love is what I want them to feel and remember above all else.
Happy Weekend friends,
If you let your anger get the best of you, it will reveal the worst of you.
-Chip Ingram & Becca Johnson
I have been doing some hard work this March...inspired by a book that challenged me to really examine my patterns and gut feelings and explore some of the relationships around me that leave me baffled and sad. When working on something like this I tend to read a book multiple times...soak up a chapter and let it settle in and see what comes...then read it again and again till I feel I have learned what I needed to from it.
This book is well written and not difficult to read but not easy to honestly apply to yourself.
Anger is an emotion that has little use in our society. It's toxic and ugly and keeps people stuck and destroys relationships. All anger looks different and presents itself differently. I realized I am sort of a stuffer...I don't like being angry. I am not good at it, I mostly cry and crumble...I hide from it and deny it. I am also what the book calls a Leaker. Not the most glamorous label but I will own it. Sometimes my stuffed anger seeps out in ways I am not proud. I might procrastinate or make excuses or engage in gossip that isn't productive at all.
I am grateful for this book and the tools and lessons it provided. The authors are Christians and some might not agree with the notions of God presented but whatever your spirituality the message makes sense and the theories are sound.
Here is a little clip as many of the lessons are available in his teachings as a Pastor, I have only watched bits so I am not 100% what it offers but what I saw made sense...
As a Mother being a good model to my boys comes above everything...I want to teach them to understand their anger and not fall into my patterns or even those the ugly things they see from others that destroy childrens spirits and innocence. Nothing makes me feel like a bigger failure as a parent is when I let my kids see anger get the better or me...when I snap at them because I am stress rolling another issue or am tired or ill. Seeing their eyes and pure spirits crushed breaks my heart. They rarely, almost never hear me yell...I am a horrible yeller but even a quiet harsh snappy tone can harm them forever. I don't want to leave those scars. I pray for patience and grace and the ability to see the big picture and laugh about stuff at times.
Anger has a place when it comes to saving the environment...get angry about the abuse of animals or global warming...that kind of anger can create change and awareness. Really that's the only place I think this raw ugly emotion has a place or excuse.
I look to many sources to learn and grow...Brene Brown, Martha Beck, Elephant Journal and so much more. These authors were new to me but I am glad I happened upon their book at the library. Returning it this week if you want to give it a go.
I would love to hear your thoughts and if you have read or watched anything that changed your ways.
So this month as I presented a lot of holiday fluff I was full on challenging myself via this book. Sorry to hit you with something so heavy out of the blue after spring break but I felt moved to share while this was fresh on my mind.
As you may have noticed this holiday I have had very little to share on Snicks. I have tried to post images on instagram as I am over the moon thrilled with the camera on my new Samsung Gallexy 4 phone. I haven't even snapped a single shot on my SLR since leaving Canada. Facebook also pops up on my phone and I like to check in but this poor blog has been sadly neglected.
Our days in Mexico have been amazing so far and unscheduled for the most part and lazy but still full somehow and passing so quickly. The boys have been a joy and we have played tons to even out our huge chunks of time spent lounging around. Haven't been to the gym once, or putted on the course here, or really gone much of anywhere except the pool and ocean. Trying not to think of all the things I was certain I would accomplish here and just let it go and love what it's been without guilt.
Yesterday was the day I actually cleaned up my camera and went out with a post in mind for Snicks. A turtle egg hatching was expected and the little turtle protection center is right on the beach here. So I hooked up my new lens packed up the boys and headed down so excited to capture adorable baby turtle images and the beach at sunset. It turned out to be a silly night. The eggs hadn't hatched on the beach...but we were invited to the Delcanto sales center there for an impromtu cocktail party!
Lovely except I was wearing the cap I have been wearing for a week with ocean hair and sweats...I did manage to get my swim suit off and slip on a bra but still not at all cocktail party material!
Seriously....layers and layers of SPF 60, sandy, matted hair and a ball cap! A photographer here snapped this and just emailed this proof. I was actually worried to take off my shades as I wasn't even sure if there was smears of mascara left from the day before.
Here we are coming up from the beach as I was showing Ry the eggs truly hadn't hatched yet. That enclosure safely encloses the eggs they find that are endangered on the beach. I had the boys dressed fairly cute as I hoped to get images of them but I was a mess.
Of course when my guys saw the sexy Mexican models in stillettos serving soda and lollipops and chips they were ready to enjoy the cocktail party. So as more and more guests arrived looking lovely I bailed and pulled a Superman. Quickly I zipped up to the room to peel off my cap put on some earrings and a dress and some wedges and join them again. We stayed a while and met some of my parents fun friends then opted for a bit more pool time once the sunset.
Thanks to Luis, a neighbor who snuck these photos and sent them along so I could share with you. Yes I am on holidays and gorgeous Nuevo Vallarta but apparently not inspired at all to write or create or even brush my hair! No shame ...coming clean friends. I had great intentions, but somehow I have failed at being the least bit Martha-ish this trip...wouldn't have it any other way though.
We do our best with wear we are at and right now my best is just taking it all in, enjoying my folks and the boys and catching up with some rest and just clearing my mind. No great revelations so far but I am finding peace with my path.
love ya friends, I have some little adventures planned that promise beautiful imagry so stay tuned and until then follow me on instagram for a daily photo diary at http://instagram.com/kerrymacleod #vivamexico