Friday, 29 November 2013

Black Friday

Sydney and I decided that we would start our day together on a fun shopping adventure.  Oakridge Centre, the mall right beside her preschool, was opening at 7:00am for Black Friday today, the first time ever that this tradition has crossed the border into Canada!

So we hauled ourselves out of bed at 6:30am, put on our clothes, jumped in the car and headed straight there after a quick pit stop at Cobs bakery for croissants, breakfast on on the run!

We had such fun shopping together!  I finally got around to using the Crate and Barrel gift card that my friend Brandie sent me for my birthday and picked up some fun items at great prices.

By the time I dropped Syd at school at 8:45am the trunk of my car was nicely packed with bags.  It was a fun morning shopping together!

I am officially finished my Christmas shopping for this year, right on schedule as my goal is always to be done by the end of November.  It felt fitting when I arrived home today to find our first Christmas gift from one of Paul's colleagues, a beautiful box of the most decadent baked treats from Butter bakery awaiting us!

Syd was pretty thrilled to see that the lobby in Paul's building was decked out for Christmas already!

Today at school Sydney's class had their annual Hanukkah party together.  The kids ate latkes and sugar cookies and together we all sang songs and celebrated together before lighting the menorah.  Such a special time together, I was choking tears back thinking that this will be my last year celebrating together in this precious classroom with Jen and Carmen!

The kids brought home some very special presents, a handmade and painted menorah that they had built  and painted in class, a beautiful Hanukkah card and a loot bag filled with goodies from their teachers.

We have had a wonderful couple of nights celebrating the second and third night of Hanukkah at home as well.  Sydney is saying the blessing for the candles all on her own this year, it's amazing!  She got a very sweet ladybug purse with matching scrunchie and a fairy princess for her gifts the past couple of nights, both handmade items that I picked up at the Circle Craft fair this year.

Yesterday we met up with my brother for lunch downtown to deliver Christmas gifts for himself and his girlfriend Stephanie.  After lunch I decided to take Syd to the German Christmas market that's happening downtown.  What a lovely market filled with the most beautiful Christmas ornaments and gifts, amazing food and activities and a giant carousel which Sydney absolutely loved riding on!

Last night I met up with my friend Sarah and six other Moms for dinner at Vinoteca restaurant, a fun new wine bar in Kits.  We had a fun visit together and I enjoyed meeting some new Moms as well!  Had a yummy veal marsala for dinner, couldn't resist taking a picture!

We have a packed fun filled weekend ahead of us, three parties, book club, a craft fair and Disney on Ice.  Looking forward to seeing my feet hit the ground sometime late Sunday night!

Wednesday, 27 November 2013


Tonight is the first night of Hanukkah.  Sydney was so excited to get home and light the candles today so that she could open her first present!  I have had a stack of presents for her, numbered 1 through 8, on the floor of my office for over a week and it's been absolutely killing her to not know what's inside!

So we lit the menorah and she finally got to dive into the first of many gifts to come.  She was delighted to discover a Hanukkah plate, cup and placemat which she used for dinner tonight and asked to use again for breakfast tomorrow morning.

No sooner had we lit our candles than we hopped in the car and drove over to Bubbie's to share a special first night of Hanukkah with Sydney's newest cousin Avior.

We enjoyed latkes made by Auntie Elaine and Sydney was thrilled to get another gift, a Disney board game!

It was a very special first night!

This afternoon Sydney and I, along with her buddy Leo and his Mom Marcy, went to the premier of the movie 'Frozen' at the International Village Cinemas downtown.

What a fabulous movie it was!  Sydney is still working up her stamina to sit through an entire movie but did well considering it was two hours long!  It was a fun way to spend an afternoon and a special treat for the first day of Hanukkah.

Tuesday, 26 November 2013

Latkes and Cookies

I have spent the past two mornings in Sydney's preschool classroom cooking and baking in preparation for their annual Hanukkah party which is happening this Friday.  It is such a pleasure being in class with the kids and helping them with an activity.  I love that they all know me so well and treat me like one of the teachers!  I must somehow fit right in in class as I've often had people ask me if I work at the preshool!

Monday morning I joined a group of four Moms to make latkes.  Christine, Joanne, Jennifer and I worked diligently grating and mixing, flipping and frying until we had the most beautiful latkes for the children.

Unfortunately I misplaced the memory card in my camera and have no photos of the actual event, but for the third year running I had the best time creating this special Hanukkah treat.

This morning I set up a baking station in the class and made sugar cookies with the children in the shapes of stars, dreidels and menorahs.  The kids had such fun rolling out the dough, cutting the shapes and topping them with sprinkles and star shaped toppings.

What a great memory together with Sydney and her classmates.

We stopped by this week to see our friends Lauren and Jonathan and their new baby Jacob for a quick visit.  Lauren had just baked a batch of her own sugar cookies and sent us home with a little package.  So yummy!

I am so loving all of my new kitchen appliances!  Tried my oven out for the first time tonight, made a lovely turkey breast roast for dinner and it was cooked to perfection!  Amazing how much something new can make a difference!

Sydney decided she was going to pack her own lunch for school tomorrow tonight.  She carefully chose all the things that she wanted to go inside and then both Daddy and I wrote a special little surprise note for her for inside her lunch kit and tucked them inside.

Happy Tuesday!

Sunday, 24 November 2013

A New Kitchen

In January, one of my new year's resolutions was to tackle the ever-growing list of things that we needed to get done around the house.  We have had a wish list of updates that we've had for quite some time and I was determined that we were going to get a few projects off our list in 2013.  It took me a few months to get cracking but we did manage to finish my beautiful new pantry and this weekend we scratched number two off the list, new appliances for our kitchen.

After six months of looking at appliances and trying to figure out what was best for us, our shiny new stainless steel appliances arrived on our doorstep.  The installers worked late into the day on Friday and came back on Saturday to finish the job up.  I am thrilled with how the kitchen looks, it has a nice industrial feel to it and everything is so new and shiny!

I especially love my new oven as the old one had been on it's last legs for a few months and was driving me crazy!  I am dreaming about all the yummy things that I will be baking in this new oven in the weeks and months to come!

On Saturday afternoon Sydney and I spent a very special time with our Dunbar friends at the Arts Club Theatre's Broadway musical production of Mary Poppins.  It was such a sensational show, amazing choreography and singing and acting.  The highlight of the show was when Mary sailed high above the audience's heads with her umbrella opened wide, the kids were all in awe!

We were so thrilled at how well the kids behaved.  The show was over two hours long with one intermission and they managed to hold it together until the end without too much noise or disruption.  We so enjoyed ourselves!

On Saturday night Paul and I went to the Vancouver Canucks game.  One of Paul's friends gave us tickets as a gift and we had amazing seats about twenty rows back from the ice.  The Canucks were playing their arch rivals, the Chicago Blackhawks, we were sad to see them lose 2-1.  It was very fun to have an evening out together and Syd enjoyed spending some time with a new babysitter, Megan who has been a substitute teacher for her preschool class several times.

This afternoon I met up with my friends Sally and Lori for high tea at the Butter Tea Room.  What a lovely way to enjoy a Sunday afternoon.   We so enjoyed the delicious sandwiches, scones and desserts and the lovely tea!

It has been a very wonderful few days filled with so many fun and memorable things. 

Thursday, 21 November 2013


Last Thursday we welcomed a new addition to our family.  Paul's niece, Tybie, had a sweet baby boy!  She named him Avior Louis Sole.  Avior is a Hebrew name that means 'father of light'.  Louis is his namesake, Paul's father who passed away some 14 years ago this December.  Sole, pronounced Soul-ay is the Italian word for sunshine, a nod to his lineage as he is half Italian.  I love how bright and cheerful his name is!

This morning the family, along with many close friends, gathered for his brit milah.  It was a lovely ceremony and made all the more special by the fact that Tybie and Luca gave Paul and I the honour of walking the baby into the room to start the ceremony.  We were so touched to be included in such a special way.

Avior is such a sweet baby, very chill and relaxed, hardly ever makes a peep.  He already seems easy going in nature.  I can't wait to see what kind of little boy he becomes!

Welcome Avior, so happy to have you in our family!