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Last night, we went to the community garden to check out how our garden was doing.  Well, it turned out to be quite a disapointment.  I’ve been meaning to get out to fence the garden but between our car being in the shop and my wisdom tooth being extracted…I had the best laid plans but life got in the way. 

Unfortunately, it seems that rabbits or some other animal had quite the feast because all the shoots I had seen a week or so ago were all gone!  😦  I was very upset as it looked like plants were finally coming up.  So, back to the drawing board.

However, that being said, I still planted a few things in containers at home and I have a very big strawberry patch that I suspect will produce lots and lots of berries.  Here is what is growing in my yard.

In my opinion, our Easter eggs turned pretty nice.  We used the Paz kit to dye them and attempted to use the kistkas but it took too long.  There was a wax crayon in the kit that did the trick just as well if not better…I had some stencils from a previous kit that we used to draw designs on the eggs, but mostly my son wanted to write his name on the eggs.

There were only two casualities which isn’t so bad and I had used on for morning crèpes.  So in the end, we had 9 eggs in  our basket.

We had a fabulous time with our friends who came over for brunch and the decorated eggs were a nice touch as the centrepiecce.

   

Perhaps it is the cabin-fever of early spring…I decide to invite four families for brunch next Saturday. Between all of us, we have nine kids. There will be 5 couples (That’s counting us too. Oh, I hadn’t crunched the numbers until just now!!!) in a slightly less than 900 square foot house. It is a potluck so I won’t have to slave all day plus I will have Good Friday to clean and bake. I’m still working out my own menu and I’m planning on having a craft on hand that the kids can do in case it’s cold out, etc.

I truly think it should be fun. I love get togethers and I figure that the size of our house should not be a deterrent. We’ve had large gatherings like this before with my husband’s friends, although mostly barbecues when the weather was nicer…I’m trying to pin down a cleaning service to give me a hand so that I can focus on other things like the food. We’ll see about that because it really is in the eleventh hour to be booking that. 😦

I really look forward to connecting with my friends. It will be loud and chaotic but fun.

On Friday, I met two of my girlfriends for lunch whom I hadn’t seen in a while.  I met these two women through our kids at daycare and we started socializing shortly after we met.  It’s fun because we have kids that are the same age and that get along well.

However, as many parents can attest to, it is really hard to fit in a conversation during a playdate.  So, we decided to hold our own playdates. 😉  We try to meet every 6 weeks or so but it’s very tricky to coordinate, as one of my friends does the morning show at a local radio station and my sister in-law just went back to work.  (She was on a business trip last week).  We try to juggle our schedules but it doesn’t always work.

During our lunch conversation, one of my friends said she didn’t feel like a mom at times because she didn’t have it “together”. Well,  I set the record straight: none of us have it “together”.  I repeat: none of us! 

I think if we start cutting ourselves a bit of slack and admit to this fact, we’ll feel liberated from the pressures of keeping a perfect house, being a perfect cook, perfect mother, wife, worker, etc.  This is the greatest disfavour we are doing to each other, that is trying to make it seem like we have it all together.  We all have good days and bad days and we truly all do the best we can.

I’ve been reading this book on and off for the past few months (whenever I can fit it in LOL) called “Life is too Short to Fold Fitted Sheets”.  Enough said! 😉

Perhaps I am feeling more daring as a mother these days. Well, tonight, even though it is supposedly spring, it was very chilly (-2C). We ate supper early because my husband had appointment at 6 p.m. and so we were finished eating by 6:20. Hum, there was lots time in the evening left and I didn’t want my son to play on his DS all evening.

So, I decided to make playdough with my daughter. My mom used to make it all the time when we were kids. It’s a pretty straightforward recipe; although when I was on mat leave, I watched Conan O’Brien burn playdough over the stove on the Martha Stewart show. Don’t ask me how he acheived that but boy was Martha annoyed with him.

So here’s the recipe I used:
2 cups flour
1 cup salt
1 tbsp oil
1 tsp cream of tartar
2 cups water
food colouring

Combine all the ingredients in the saucepan except for the food colouring. Once it is mixed together, mix in the food colouring. Heat over medium high heat until it thickens, stirring constantly to avoid burning.

I got my daughter to pour in the ingredients and then I took care of the rest. Seeing as I couldn’t find the cookies cutters, I pulled out my potato masher, my meat tenderizer, a toy rolling pin and a couple of toys with a bit of texture to them to make tracks in the playdough.

When we started playing with it, it was still warm. Of course, my daughter had to taste it but from what I remember as a kid, it is quite a salty mixture. I could feel the salt on my hands, just like when I was a kid.

What fun! We even had time to fit in a quick bath and the little ones were in bed by 8 p.m. (not asleep mind you, but hey, you can’t have everything, can you?)

For those of you who know me well, you know that I am very involved in  the women’s movement…I wanted to reflect on what it means to be a woman in the 21st century. 

My generation really feels like we can do it all and have it all, thanks to our mothers who pushed the boundries and instigated so much change. 

However, it’s not always easy to balance a career, motherhood, mariage and housekeeping…Sometimes, I wonder if as women, we are trying to do too much. 

In this era of Martha Stewart and acheiving perfection in every aspect of our lives, I think we need to let ourselves just “be” and let go of all this pressure we put on ourselves to be the perfectly put together mother, wife, employee and friend. We are very demanding on ourselves and often compare ourselves to others around us.

It’s okay to let things slide.  It’s okay to just “be”.  Who you are is good enough.

Ultimately, your kids won’t remember whether or not the house was impecably clean but they will remember laughing hysterically when their mother falls into the snowbank.  They’ll remember stirring the soup with you in the kitchen and dancing in the living room among the piles of folded laundry.

To all the women (and the men who love them) who are reading this blog, I wish you all a wonderful Women’s Day. 

To all the women I lean on, thanks for being there.  You are all truly wonderful!

I love baking and most of all baking muffins for my family.  There is nothing like a great muffin that you can grab and go in the morning. 

I use recipes from a Harrowsmith cookbook I inherited from my parents.  The recipes are a bit dated (no flax seed here) but they are so basic that you can add or change ingredients, as you please.

Last night, I made blueberry muffins.  Blueberries were on sale at Safeway (2/$5) and what better way to use them (apart from eating them out of hand, of course!).  I pulled out my antique Sunbeam mixer that I inherited from my maternal grandmother.  I love this appliance and it has served me well over the years.  I mixed my son’s first birthday cake with it and muffins and scones for my dad’s 60th surprise birthday brunch.

I had just bought some new baking powder so the muffin batter was very light and airy.  I used a tried and true trick that I picked up while watching Martha Stewart (while I was on maternal leave) and used an ice cream scoop to measure out the batter.

Don’t these look so yummy?  I just had to take a picture before they were all gone! LOL.  The only thing missing were my kids who were not there to lick the beaters. 😉