Thursday, 28 May 2015

Speed of Light

The title of this post today sums up how life feels right now.  It is humming along at a speed that I can barely keep up with.  I realize, looking back at past years at this time of year, that it is a notoriously busy time of year.  Things are wrapping up, school, activities, commitments and plans are busily being made for the summer months that lie ahead.

Rangoli Rave 2015

Whistler May Long
Elizabeth's 6th Birthday

I am trying more and more each day to embrace the craziness of this time, realizing that in the busyness I can miss those precious moments that come and go so quickly.

Yesterday afternoon Sydney had dance class after school.  I arrived at 4:00 to pick her up after working a full day with Paul at his office.  It was a beautiful, sunny day and Sydney wanted to stay in the school playground for a while to play so I found a comfy spot in the sun and watched her do the monkey bars like an expert for well over an hour.

In that time I had a wander through the school garden, a wonderful chat with the gardener and Sydney's teachers.  I connected with them in a way that I hadn't before simply because I had taken the time to slow down and let Sydney stay to play instead of hustling her off home, on to the next thing.

When we finally arrived home I realized that I was never going to make my 6:00 gym time so I called an cancelled and after a quick dinner Syd, Paul and I packed up and headed to Jericho Beach to watch the sun set while Sydney collected shells and barnacles and sea glass.  It was one of the most precious times that I can remember us spending as a family in recent memory.  I loved every second.

And yet, I struggle because I love to be busy.  I get such a rush looking at my daytimer and seeing days bustling with activity, from one thing to the next.  But the most magical moments with Sydney, they happen when we aren't doing something scheduled, they happen when I just let time unfold as it may.

It's a lesson that I'm just now starting to learn and I feel may change the rhythm of our lives if I can somehow embrace it.  We'll see...

Sunday, 10 May 2015

Mother's Day

Today was Mother's Day, my sixth since becoming a Mom when Sydney was born in 2009.  I love Mother's Day so much, far and away because the most magical of all the days of my life was the day that I became a Mom.  Sydney's presence in my life makes everything in my world better. 

I have treasured every Mother's Day with Sydney since she's been born.  Each one has been different with the overall tradition of spending the day together doing something out of the ordinary.  Today was no exception.  I have been diligently working on my list of '40 Things to Accomplish in my 40th Year' and one of the goals that I have is to run a 10K race.  In keeping with the training that I have been doing towards this, I signed up to do the 5K Fairmont Mother's Day Run this morning.

It was so exciting heading down to Stanley Park with Paul and Syd bright and early this morning to a sea of yellow shirts waiting to start the race.  I met up with my friend and Sunday morning running partner Angela, along with my beloved friends Sally, Allan and Ollie and we ran together chatting all the while.

Sydney made me the cutest poster that read "Go Mommy Go" decorated in her own special way and it was such a delight to see her and Paul waiting at the finish line for me cheering me on!

What a wonderful way to start my day, a beautiful run through an amazing part of our city with great friends and my two favourite people in the world waiting for me at the end of it all!

I love that Syd wanted to wear my bib at the end of the race and wore her running clothes as well in full support of me!  

Sydney has been diligently working on a special Mother's Day gift for me at school all this past week.  This morning I finally got to open it after days and days of hearing about this precious surprise.

It was such a lovely gift, a frame that Sydney had custom painted with a picture of her holding a chalkboard that read:  "I Love my Mommy because she takes care of me" in her own handwriting!

And then there was the card, so beautifully painted but the message that she wrote to me inside brought tears to my eyes:

Dear Mommy,

Happy Mother's Day

I hope you have a good time doing the Mother's Day run with Susan, you, Angela and Sally!  You will reach in to the bag of surprises.  I hope you have a good time doing the Mother's Day run.  Me and Daddy will cheer you on at the finish line.  Have a good Mother's Day.  I love you so much, you are my best friend.  Me and Daddy love you.



My sweet girl, I am blessed beyond measure! 

We took some time today as well to visit Paul's Mom at her graveside as this is the first Mother's Day without her.  She loved lilacs so much and we always made a point of bringing her a bouquet every Mother's Day in the past and today was no exception.  It was lovely to remember her in this way and for Sydney to see her graveside for the first time. 

It was a lovely day, I truly am so blessed!

Thursday, 7 May 2015

Playing Hookey

Since Sydney started Kindergarten way back in early September, we have missed only one day of school, a planned absence for Rosh Hashanah.  Sydney has had a stellar year health-wise, not even missing a single day due to illness, I am so grateful!

This time of year is so busy and I was sensing lately that Sydney was just needing some really focused time with Mom so I cleared a day for us to play hookey together.  We chatted about how we might like to spend this precious day together and she ultimately decided that she wanted to head to the states together to go shopping.

Oh the best laid plans...we were getting ourselves ready to go last night running a few errands when my car mysteriously started overheating and the heater quit working all together.  Something was clearly wrong and it became evident quickly that a road trip was out of the question for today.

So I gave Sydney the option of heading to school this morning but she decided that she'd rather still spend the day with me so we spent a precious day together.

We had a long soak in a bubble bath, followed by a snuggle on the couch to watch one of her favourite shows, 19 Kids and Counting, together. 

Then we strolled around our neighborhood and collected a beautiful bouquet of flowers.

When she was ready to head out for the day, we drove to Jericho Beach where she had the best time beach combing, this time collecting shells and rocks covered in barnacles instead of the usual sea glass!

We headed straight from the beach to Whitespot for lunch, Menchies for dessert and then to Sydney's cousin Avior's house for a visit followed by side by side pedicures at Pure Nail Bar.

The evening continued in a special time together as we made dinner side by side in the kitchen and then played in the garden and backyard all the while enjoying each other's company.

It was a precious day and left me wondering why I hadn't done this sooner!

Tuesday, 5 May 2015

Enjoying our Garden

Here we are, five days into May and I can already taste summer a little.  The days are getting warmer and longer and I'm longing for a little downtime in our backyard soaking up the sun. 

Sydney and I had a fun time this past weekend getting all of our planting done in the garden.  We were up with the birds at 6:30am on Sunday morning and out the door immediately to the Stongs garden sale which happens every year on the first Sunday of May. 

We had the best time wandering up and down the aisles looking at all of the plants and I let Syd choose whatever she wanted for her vegetable, herb and flower gardens.

We gathered everything we needed and spent the morning planting.

I absolutely love her new veggie container garden planted in a Veg Trug from Lee Valley.  Sydney planted fennel, kale, broccoli, Swiss chard, green lettuce, red lettuce, red bell pepper and spinach.

Here's her sweet herb garden.

And her flowers, pansies and marigolds in bright yellow containers.

We also planted a cherry tomato plant that we got in our takeaway bag from Weston and Gwen's party and a strawberry plant.

We got our geraniums in this weekend too, love how bright and cheerful they make our backyard look.

And speaking of cheerful, nothing makes me happier than to see how amazing my lilac bush looks this year!  It is bigger and with more blooms than ever before!

I couldn't resist cutting myself a bouquet for my kitchen to enjoy.

We are truly enjoying our garden this year and looking forward to many long summer days enjoying all that we've planted.