30 January 2011

Bouquet of Balloon Flowers for a Special Friend


We are celebrating a very big birthday with a very good friend. Hubs has been honing his balloon making skills lately (YouTube ... an invaluable resource!) and we hoped that a balloon bouquet would make our friend smile today.




Spud has been practicing too. His specialties so far are windmills and indescribable kitchen instruments. Hmmm. I feel another post coming ... in the meantime ... Happy Birthday Kiley.

29 January 2011

Spud's Modest Life List at Age 6

Spud's list is rather small. And that is no accident. He's afraid if he makes it too long, he won't get it all in. He's already cautioned me about my life list; he thinks it's far too ambitious.



1. Become an architect
2. Have around 10 kids (This doesn't necessarily include marriage. He's not committing to that one yet.)
3. Learn to play a brass instrument
4. Learn Spanish
5. Go> Disney World, Florida
6. Go> The Wizarding World of Harry Potter, Florida
7. See the Pyramids in Egypt
8. Either watch in person OR participate in a Summer Olympic Games
9. Fly in a plane without walls (e.g. ultralight)

21 January 2011

Photo Friday #35

BOEING TOUR, NEAR SEATTLE  |  TRAVELS WITH KID

Our last trip to Seattle, Washington included the much anticipated tour of Boeing's The Future of Flight Aviation Centre, where we saw the detailed assembly line of commercial jets. Since we were not actually allowed to take cameras on the tour itself, these photos here are in the Materials Zone, which was a fun way to wait for the official tour to start.





Thanks to Delicious Baby for hosting Photo Friday each week. Share your travel pics there or check out what other people have been up to.

20 January 2011

My Life List ... so far

There. Finally. I good start on my Life List. In my 40 something years I've been lucky enough to do the odd cool thing here and there ... I'm pretty sure I would have put these on my Life List had I written one in my 20s AND dared to dream. Some of them are just experiences that fundamentally changed me ... for good and bad. Well, I now officially feel thoroughly inspired and overwhelmed at the same time. And loving it.



Participate in the Sketchbook Project
Write and illustrate a children’s book
Design and make stuffie
Make a set of Bean bags
Learn to play something on the piano
Be able to bake something from scratch from memory
Make a pastry from scratch
Make bread with Spud
Have a homemade ice cream party
Get my driver’s license
Design a colouring/activity book for kids
Make a travel journal, by hand (Morocco Family Travel Journal)
Design 5 fabric lines
Make a patchy blankie using my own fabrics
Create original sewing pattern
Own vacation property
Sell a book on blurb.com
Build a birdhouse
Celebrate an anniversary w/ big “rent a hall” party
Make a living as a freelance designer/writer
Write a poem to Spud
Read all 7 Harry Potter Books with Spud
Join a book club
Write a novel
Spend a day with my camera on manual
Design a typeface
Watch the Canucks win the Cup
Start a greeting card collection
Design a line of greeting cards
Complete a beginner Spanish course
Volunteer abroad
Fly Business Class
GO> Each Canadian province / territory (8/13)
Skate on the Rideau Canal, Ottawa
Have 40 country ticks on my travel wish list (29 and counting!)
See Cirque du Soleil in Las Vegas
Live in another country
Tour Europe in a camper with the family
GO> Ireland
GO> Sweden
Have my first souffle in France
Have a Toad in the Hole, in England
Go> Tregaron, Wales (the middle name of Spud and Hubs)
Tour Moorish Spain
Learn to read Arabic numbers + alphabet
Take Spud to Egypt
GO> Thailand
Step on the Equator
GO> Easter Island
GO> Galapagos
GO> Brazil
GO> Taj Mahal
GO> Kashmir
GO> Angkor Wat, Cambodia
Have tea in the Sahara with my guys
GO> Sydney, Australia
Write down my Life List
Get Married in Vegas
Work as a designer for an NBA and NHL team in my home town
Watch every major Oscar nominee BEFORE the award show and then watch the show
Start a globe collection
Start a postcard collection
Have a baby




Video tape my baby 10 sec / day for 365 days so that I can watch him grow a whole year in just one hour
Make a time capsule for my baby on his first birthday
Make a photo book of my pregnancy
Have a paint splatter party
Open an Etsy shop
Start a blog
See an Olympic Games in another country (Torino, Italy, 2006)




See an Olympic Games in my own country
Design for Olympic Games in my hometown
Tour and compare US / Canadian prisons, min to max
Run 10 k (no stopping!)
Do the Grouse Grind (Grouse Mountain, BC)
Walk on NHL ice



Roam Havana, Cuba
Have lunch overlooking ships passing the Panama Canal
Camp on Lake Superior
Drive across Canada
Own a rooftop tent
GO>  Niagra Falls, ON
GO> Disneyland with my kid
Compete in a race, abroad (Dragon Boat in Hawaii)



GO> London
Get Musée'd out in Paris (Musée d’Orsay, l’Orangerie, Louvre)
GO> Eiffel tower, Paris
Watch the sun set over Paris from the Sacré-Coeur
Get lost in the streets of Florence
Dodge the quick fingers of pickpockets in Rome
GO> Acropolis, Greece
Tour the Romantic Road in Germany
Stay overnight in a castle (Germany and Italy)
Walk to Monaco
Ride the Tube, the Metro, the NY Subway and the L
Learn enough Arabic to barter in a Mideast souq
See the Pyramids, Giza, Egypt
Ride a camel


Snorkle in the Red Sea
GO> Petra, Jordan
Stay with Bedouin family in traditional tent retracing footsteps of Lawrence of Arabia (Wadi Rum, Jordan)
Sail on the Nile, Egypt


Survive “Pharoah’s Revenge”
GO> Crac de chevalier, Syria
Climb Mount Sinai and watch the sunrise
Experience a national election where there is only one candidate (Syria)
GO> Palmyra, Syria


GO> Istanbul, Turkey
GO> Ephesus, Turkey
Have Turkey dinner in Turkey on Christmas Eve (Goreme, Turkey)
Get to know each quarter in Jerusalem
Spend a day at Yad Vashem (Holocaust Museum)
Float in the Dead sea
GO> Palestine
GO> Beirut, Lebanon
Sleep in a grass hut (Swaziland)


GO> Robben Island, South Africa
See penguins in their natural habitat (South Africa)
GO> Kruger National Park, South Africa
Tour as many art museums and galleries of South Africa as you can
Photograph the Sossusvlei dunes, Namibia
Visit a ghost town in the dessert (Kolmanskop, Namibia)
GO> African Safari and tick the Big 5! (South Africa and Namibia)
Do a walking safari (Hwange, Zimbabwe)


Tour a diamond mine (Kimberley, South Africa)
Spend a day in an African village (South Africa and Zimbabwe)
GO> Victoria Falls, Zimbabwe

19 January 2011

wee love on wednesdays


Four things I'm loving this Wednesday:
1. Bird Salad Bowl and Servers: check out those pretty birds perched on the bowl, ready for action. Lovely.
2. Using soap flakes instead of liquid soap. Aside from looking cool, Natalie Stampfli gives good ecological reasons for doing this.
3. Sprucing up IKEA paper lanterns x 2.
4. Recycled chenille sealife pillows on Etsy — sea urchin and starfish. Seriously love these.

10 January 2011

Making Slime


Why not make Magic Mud and Slime on the same day. Both use pretty basic around-the-home ingredients with pretty different results! It's amazing what white glue does when combined with borax. Dare to compare!


I found this helpful pdf online, by chemistry teacher Dr. Jim Hebden, which takes you through the process of making slime and carefully cautions you about the dangers of ingesting borax (therefore this project needs high supervision, especially for your little mouthy folks).

Here's the gist:
1. In one container dissolve 1/4 teaspoon of borax in 1 Tablespoon water
2. In a separate container, mix 1 Tablespoon water with  1 Tablespoon white glue
3. Pour the borax solution into the diluted white glue while stirring slowly (about 20 seconds)

08 January 2011

Making Magic Mud II

It's been so long since we've played with the magic cornstarch /  water concoction, a favourite of mine when I was wee, that I thought I would bust it out again on yesterday's very rainy morning. It's been so long in fact, that Spud does not even remember playing with it before.



And this time, he actually touched it with his hands! For those of you who know him, you will be impressed.



For the original post including the recipe (we doubled the recipe this time) see Making Magic Mud.

While we were at it, we tried a new concoction, Slime, which I will post about soon!

07 January 2011

Photo Friday #34

CONSERVATORY IN SEATTLE  |  TRAVELS WITH KID






In Seattle for a few days recently we went to Delicious Baby for some advice on things to do. Day 1: the Conservatory in Volunteer Park. We spent the better part of an hour spotting various plants for the mini scavenger hunt. The cactus section was particularly alluring.





Thanks to Delicious Baby for hosting Photo Friday each week. Check it out!

06 January 2011

weelife Robots on Nerdy Pop's Kindle Covers



I am SO honoured that the lovely and talented Lizz over at Nerdy Pop made one of her hoochie Kindle covers using our little wee robot friends! Isn't it adorable? Check out her Etsy shop for even more designs!

(Images: nerdypop)

05 January 2011

wee love on wednesdays

Just 4 wee things I'm loving today.


1. Jim Kazanjian's "Composite Photographs" are fantastical! I couldn't wait to show them to Spud; his jaw dropped as much as mine.
2. In light of previous post on Life Lists, this one's for the Taj Mahal, found on Etsy's ialbert.
3. Check out Creative Juices for these wonderfully simple candle holders made of ice!
4. How About Orange working more magic with some simple wooden disks and some sharpies. Lovely!

04 January 2011

Happy 2011!

Well, more than a resolution this year, I'm in the process of creating my Life List! Being the listophile that I am, it is a perfect project for me. And task number 1 is to complete said list! I was totally inspired by one of my favourite google reader stops Design for Mankind who was in turn inspired by Mighty Girl. Check out their life lists. And then, browsing around, I found this interesting social network site for Life Listers ... My Life List guides you in actually getting ticks!



OK, here's 20 to start with ... in no particular order.

1. Write down my life list
2. Participate in the Sketchbook Project
3. See Cirque du Soleil in Las Vegas
4. Take Spud to Egypt
5. Take conversational Spanish
6. Learn to read the Arabic alphabet
7. Have 40 travel ticks on my country list
8. Have tea in the Sahara
9. Volunteer abroad
10. Celebrate Hub's and my anniversary with big "rent a hall" party
11. Read all 7 Harry Potter Books with Spud
12. Make a living as a freelance designer/writer
13. See the Taj Mahal
14. Write/illustrate a children's book
15. Design and make Spud a stuffie
16. Fly Business Class at least once
17. Watch my home hockey team win the Cup
18. Be able to bake something from scratch from memory
19. Own vacation property
20. Get my driver’s license
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