Monday, November 28, 2011

I need to apologise to someone.
She is unlikely to see this, but I want to put it out into the world anyway.
So, lady in the playground, with the pretty little pixie of a two and a half year old. Who we have seen in passing a few times and finally spoke to today. I'm really sorry. I choked. I really hope I didn't hurt your feelings.

As we were leaving the playground we talked about Teddy's balance bike. I asked how old your pixie is. We agreed that two and a half is fun-but-exhausting.
I asked if you lived around here.
And you were brave. You said yes, temporarily. You were staying at R- House. And I said "huh?"
And you explained that R- House is the Woman's Shelter over-that-way.
And that's when I choked. Not literally, but conversationally.
I said "Oh I didn't know it was there. And OH HEY, do they accept donations of baby clothes?"
And you were polite, and said perhaps, that there was a room of donated clothes. And you went to catch up with someone you knew and I wanted to kick myself in the ass.
I wish that I had said pretty much anything else instead of what I did; which was, to all intents and purposes, "OH hey, I'm a lucky, privileged do-gooder and you're a charity case".
Walking home I had that horrible mix of mortified and angry-with-myself, the kind that sticks in your throat and makes your eyeballs smart.
So. There we have it.

You know, today's post was going to be where I outed myself as a personal style blogger and waxed lyrical about the job of parenting and clothes and body image and yadda yadda yadda, I've been thinking about those things a lot recently. Perhaps tomorrow I will feel like words are my friends instead of chunky rocks to throw.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

This isn't really a post it's just something I want to remember.
So, my sweetheart set up these guys last night for my poor, bored bear (and me) to find.

It's Hank, Mr. Penguin and Leroy Brown (baddest dog in the whole damn town) doing a spot of camping. And it looks like some pretty fun times actually. 
In conclusion, I love that man. Like, a LOT. 

kids = ebola (and pinterest!)

Preschoolers; they're adorable germ-laden plague-bearers. Nothing quite like a feverish, booger-beladen kid to put a crimp in one's day week. Seriously? A week? Poor baby is bored to tears. But he sounds like Lauren Bacall after a heavy night (which is actually completely rad, just not on a 3 year old).
And cause some terrible guilt.
The guilt thing is 'cause, I, um, didn't even notice he was sick. 
We went out for Dim Sum with his Granny H, and he was a kind of tantrumy then kind of sulky. Both of which are really of out of character*, and both of which get pretty short shrift from me. It wasn't until we were in Holt Renfrew trying on perfumes-I-can't-afford that I noticed that he was sweating like crazy and had a blistering fever. 
Yah. Nice job me. Apparently I won't be winning the Parent Of The Year award, AGAIN.

Oh well, he can start saving for the therapy now.

Oh,  and he's infectious. Which means we've been hanging out in our jammies watching an embarrassing amount of TV.  But it does give me time to lurk around Pinterest, cooing over the pretty things. Do you Pinterest? This is me right here, hit me up in the comments if'n you want to be chums?  (on the proviso that I'm not exactly sure what I'm doing with the whole thing and I get distracted easily by shiny objects).

And lastly here's a quick shot of Betty looking artsy. And you guys? I don't mean to brag, but she sews through leather like it's no big thing. She's all "Sure, whatever lady, give me a real challenge, bust out the titanium". I love her. Even her font KILLS me.

* The "out of character" thing? It kind of blows the idea of child-karma out of the water. Given what a horrible child I was, Teddy should be cross between Taz and an angry orangutan. As it is, he's a pretty awesome little chap. Perhaps he's saving it up until he's in his teens?

Monday, November 7, 2011


You guys! I'm 33 today! 33! (I'm not complaining, so far I bloody LOVE my 30's)
I'm also not sticking around for long, I just wanted to tell you that apparently I don't learn! 'Member how last year my sweetie surprised the dickens out me with a party?
Well he did it again.
And I fell for it. Hook, line and sinker. Again.
And it was lovely, there was cake. And sangria. And funtimes. And that was after dinner at The Queen and Beaver (you should go! it's ace!)
There are no pictures (or if there are there may be sailor hats?) but I do have SOMETHING to show you...

Can you see what it is? It's a ring-bound manual for a 1969 White Company sewing machine. With less than 5 hours use on it. Still in it's table. With a heap of feet and accouterments. In TIFFANY BLUE.
Wondering why I might have such a manual? For such a machine?
YOU GUYS! It's because she is mine! And she shall be coming home with me on Wednesday. And her name shall be Betty (like Betty White; another awesome vintage broad, see?) and GOOD LORD but she's smooth. And you guys. I just about pee'd.
She is a gift from my good friend (and my baby's honorary granny), and I am a very very lucky gurl.
Ok. I'm going to go drink birthday chardonnay and snuggle on the couch with my sweetheart.

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Dirt Cheap DIY Boot Trees

So. I have two problems with boots. And I use the term "problem" pretty loosely here folks. In fact lets go with So, I have two kinda-dumb-first-world-problems with boots.
The first problem isn't just me, it's just a thing that knee high boots do. See:

My boots flop over. Which wrinkles the ankles and makes the tops all flat and puts a crease down the middle. It's a whole big thing. And Not Cool. 
The solution is Boot Trees (not trees that grow boots - though you guys, just the idea of trees that grow boots makes me feel kind of fevered).
Boot trees that you jam into your boots to keep them erect and wrinkle-free (oh my god. I just wrote "erect" on the internets. So, HI! If you came here via a google search for "erect", you're prolly in the wrong place, perhaps turn your safe-search off?).
Now, in an ideal world I'd have a full compliment of beautiful, hand carved, vintage boot trees. Or even just a bunch of these. In this world I don't, and I'm fairly unlikely to acquire 'em any time soon. 
But that's OK! 'Cause there are a couple of different solutions. 

The first, and my total favourite, is this:

Wondering what that is? It's flexible plastic chopping board of course! (Remember how I use them for EV.ERY.THING?) And all you do is roll it up and jam it down your boots. You could get all fancy and cut a rounded "V" shape out of the bottom. I didn't because most of my boots are flat.

Next there's the old  "wine bottle down the boot" trick. Which is OK? I guess? But not ideal, because
It kind of puffs out the ankles in an odd shape, but doesn't stop the top of the boot from being flat. Also, having "hidden" booze in my closet makes me feel like my Alcoholic Granny - which, gross & kind of upsetting. Ok moving swiftly on...
Here's a shot of the difference between the choppin' boards and the wine bottles:

Note the unpuffy ankles on the choppin' board boot versus the bottle boot.
And lastly (and the cheapest way) is to roll up a magazine and jam it down there. It's not perfect but it'll does in a pinch.

And as for the second problem I have with boots, um. OK. Don't judge me now... but... I have 5 pairs of brown knee high boots, (OH, and one black pair too). 5 (and they're all... um,  pretty similar actually).
It's a sickness.
I blame Duo Boots.
See, I am a girl with chunky calves, (not like baby cows, like the bottom parts of my legs, chubby baby cows are adorable).
Which means that knee high boots were pretty much a no-go for me, with the zipper-straining and the weird calf muffin-tops and the plain old "YAH, dude, these are never going to do up".
Anyway, my mum was all "you should look up Duo, they do different calf sizes".
I was all "WHA!? Why wasn't I informed!" and I had my first pair picked out before she'd finished her next sentence.
Now here's were I warn you before I send you over there. They're kind of expensive. Actually, not "kind of", they ARE expensive.
They're your forever boots. My first pair have trotted happily through four Canadian winters, complete with mushy snowy salty grey slop attacking them, and they still look awesome. I take care of them, with regular waterproofing sprays and sticking chopping boards inside them and softly crooning love songs to them. But you do that when you pay a bloody fortune for your boots (or at least I do?).
So, if you have wide (or skinny) calves you should go check them out here.
And here's the good part. If you can wait till the new year, they have a BRILLIANT sale. They get to be, if not dirt cheap then "OH MY GOD I CAN TOTALLY JUSTIFY THIS" cheap. It's a heady time.
Just to be clear here, Duo isn't sponsoring me (mine is an unrequited love. Le sigh). I just happen to think they rock the free world and I'm not even kidding when I say that their boots are kind of a life changer (well they were for me anyway).

NOW! I'm off to go and lurk around Duo,  pressing my nose against the (browser) window like a Dickensian orphan. Because, 5 is NOT too many pairs. no no no trala la la-I'm-not-listening-la.

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Cowboy Chicken! "He's a chicken who is a cowboy guy"

Halloween, maybe my favourite holiday. costumes+candy=funtimes.
Want to see how we rolled, costume wise?
WELLL! First we went to "Big Boy School" (the PFLC playgroup at our local school) Like this:

He's Biggles Bear, Flying Ace. And here's a tiny admission. There was no planning for that "costume" at all. The flight jacket and hat are just what he wears. And I grabbed a white "scarf" from my fabric stash and fringed the ends. But you guys. I love it. Love love. See, both my Grandpas (his great grandpas) were pilots. And my dad IS a pilot. (My mum has her  P.P.L. and I have about 17 hours of a Private Pilots Licence too; we're an aeronautical family)
So yep, my kid is Biggles. I might have put on my outfit with Amelia Earheart in mind. Maybe. but I'm admitting nothing. (and it's a brutally unflattering shot, gah).
So that was the morning, and a thrown together outfit so Teddy wouldn't BOIL in the overheated school.
This is the real deal:

Which... OK?
I have no idea how he came up with it but he asked to be a "chicken who is a cowboy guy".
For the last couple of weeks the whole "what to be" conversation has been a source of superfuntimes, and there was some talk of a Space Robot, a zookeeper, or a "RacingCarDriverVRooom". But on Wednesday he declared for Cowboy Chicken and stuck with it when asked three times.
So off we went to the Dolla' Stor'. We scored the hat, the orange "feet", some craft foam and (my favourite part) a handful off-brand swiffer-type dusters.
I pulled those suckers apart and tacked them on to the sleeve of a white hoodie. And voila, softie chicken wings. I could have used a feather boa but I'm monstrous allergic.
I chopped the toes off the orange sockies and tacked on felt chicken feet.
The vest/waistcoat we had.
The chicken mask I made because the chicken masks at the costume shop across the road were kind of... sinister looking? and too big. I did manage to hot-glue a chicken nosehole to my hand. Not cool you guys. Not cool.
Anyway, it came together, it looked like this and it was a hit when we went trick or treating last night. So I'm calling it a win.
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