Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Stepbrothers


Last night I watched Stepbrothers, a movie I've been meaning to sit down and watch for awhile. All summer I've been watching movies on my trusty little portable DVD player.....I find that when I put the headphones on, curl up in bed and watch, I get totally immersed in the movie -- more so when then when I'm just sitting in front of the TV. I love to watch movies from the comfort of my bed. Plus, Mr. Limefreckle can snore away, without the TV on.

Well, unfortunately last night, I kept Mr. Limefreckle up, because I COULD NOT STOP LAUGHING! I love the combo of John C. Reilly and Will Ferrell a la Talledega Nights --- if you haven't rented this movie yet, get yourself over to the video store, or ziplist it, and watch -- if you love Will Ferrell, and his ridiculously silly type of humour, than you should love this one! It's a little crude, there is a lot of swearing, so be warned if that bothers you!!!!

And if you DO rent it.....let me know....was the scene when Will Ferrell was "desecrating" the drum kit not the funniest????

Monday, February 23, 2009

The Oscars

I'm not a huge Oscar fan, but reading Saucy's post today made me want to share with you some of the things that were going through my mind last night, while watching portions of the Oscars.

Firstly, I wonder......did Sarah Jessica Parker fall out of her dress at all during the evening? She looks fantastic, as she always does, but hey, how does a girl enjoy a cocktail or 10 if she feels that at any moment the wrong move could send your best assets tumbling out of their sheath...



While watching her present it was all I could think about....

Secondly, I need to know, what was Angelina really thinking as she smiled, and laughed and clapped when Jack Black and Jen presented? Come on, you can tell me Ang...what was really on your mind????





I've never been a big Angelina fan, and also, I must admit, I'm not that crazy about Brad Pitt as well....I'm completely in Jen's corner, having your husband leave you and start up another family so quickly can't be an easy thing to have to live through so publicly ---- but hey, Jen had the last laugh, because she got to go out with VINCE VAUGHAN......I'll take him over Brad any day of the week.

And speaking of good looking guys.....



Hugh was reason enough to tune in. Mr. Limefreckle kept channel surfing whenever Hugh came on stage....something about a hockey game on the other channel -- I think he's just jealous!!!

It took me a minute to figure out what Ben Stiller was up to here:


That's because Mr. Limefreckle "surfed" back to this segment half way through.....but then I remembered this:



Oh how I love David Letterman!!! I don't quite get what happened here to Joaquin, but I will be going to see his latest movie, he is one of my favourite actors, and I'm just praying that this is all just some publicity stunt gone bad, that he hasn't lost it...because it would be a shame to not see him in any more movies.

And finally, who doesn't love these two:


I've loved Steve ever since I can remember ----- since he did King Tut, and Two Wild and Crazy Guys....THAT'S pretty far back. When he looked at Tina, and said "DON'T fall in love with me", I thought I would die laughing.......the world doesn't see enough Steve Martin anymore.

So there you go, these are just some of the random thoughts running through my head last night.....in case you were interested.

Sunday, February 22, 2009

Colin and Justin


(all pictures from HGTV.ca)

One show I've been watching a lot lately is Colin and Justin's Home Heist --- I've watched these guys for awhile, back when they did How Not To Decorate, and lately I can't get enough of this show. I PVR it every week, and I just realized that if you go check them out on HGTV you can watch full episodes of their series (I'm not sure if that will work for you readers in the US, but Canadians should be able to get it)


I just love their witty comments, the way they get along, and, of course, their design styles -- they always come up with such great combinations, the show makes me want to redesign my whole house. I also absolutely love the boutonnieres that Justin wears:



If you are looking for some design inspiration, check them out -- they have a new book out, I saw it in Lowes this weekend -- must put that on my list of things to purchase!

Friday, February 20, 2009

Friday's Fabulous Finds

This week, I've been following one of my favourite bloggers, the Nester, she's been giving a quick, "10 Minutes to a Fabulous Home" tutorial every day. This is a link to her finale, but I urge you to explore her blog, and check out the whole week's worth of ideas. The finale should keep you busy enough, as there are so many links to check out of great ideas from other blogs.

Happy decorating!

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Random annoyances

Hey I just discovered the "compose" section of blogger. I can change the font, add italics, this opens up a whole new world for me. HOW DO YOU LIKE ME NOW????

Anyway, the purpose of this post is to complain. I just can't keep this inside me today.....I need to know......do you have children? Do you have boys? Do your boys wear out the very same knee in every pair of jeans you buy for them, in, oh I don't know, 5 seconds after purchase? I am constantly buying new jeans for Limefreckle Jr.....it's always the same knee worn out.....the right knee...is this some sort of conspiracy? Do the jean companies make their jeans just a TINY bit less stable in the right knee? I just don't get it!

I also don't like the way you can only buy jeans in "Slim" size at so many stores.....Limefreckle Jr. is huge...he's 7 years old (almost 8) wearing a size 10 jean, but they must be slim, because he is, well, SLIM! This limits our jean shopping opportunities a lot. I guess he just takes after me, a gal who can only purchase jeans in TALL......this limits things for me as well (in Canada anyway, in the US I notice most stores recognize that not every woman fits a 30" or 32" inseam).

AND ANOTHER THING!!! Why on EARTH, do they make boy's jeans to look like they are faded, frayed, ripped etc. HELLO....HE'S 7 YEARS OLD....he will take care of the rips and frays all by himself thank you very much, I do not need to purchase brand new jeans this way.....

I just had to get that off my chest.....thanks for listening!

computer woes!!

My computer finally died....well, not died so much as started to take WAY to long to open programs, read email, or read blogs. I tried purchasing a couple of programs, one was a registry mechanic, one was called spy doctor, in the hopes that I could tidy things up myself (I like to think of myself as a techno girl -- although I draw the line at texting....I just can't seem to get into that!) Anyway, the programs didn't help much, so I had to ship my beloved computer off to a professional....thankfully my hubby knows a guy that will do good work. So, my baby has been out of commission -- thankfully we have a spare computer in the house, it's in the kitchen, for Limefreckle Jr.'s amusement (you know, sometimes you just have to get on line and watch the previews of movies about to be released, or maybe play a few games at www.starfall.com)

Apparently the old girl (the computer, not me) needs some more ram, and then it needed to be completely backed up, and cleaned out --- but I trust it is in good hands, and all my precious pictures and music will be saved....but it's wierd not having a computer. My husband had to remind me as I was on my way into my craft room, coffee in hand this morning, that there was no computer there to play with. One friend commented that I hadn't updated my blog....yes, that is what things have come to, if my friends can't get in touch with me, they just check my blog to see what is new......I guess that's life in 2009!

So if you too have been wondering where I've been, that is the story....I will try to get online and post some pics of what I have been up to this weekend (keep your fingers crossed that my baby will be back by then!)

Saturday, February 14, 2009

I added my picture

I've been wanting to find a picture of me to add to my blog for awhile now, however they are all 40 lbs. or so too heavy for my taste.....I must learn how to edit pictures a little better. I had my hair done today -- is that the right term -- hair "done"? Should I just REALLY reveal my age and say I went to the beauty parlour? Anyway, I just returned from a visit to my hair stylist, and, as my hair always looks it's best that day, I slapped on some makeup and commissioned Limefreckle Jr. to take my picture -- he's quite the little photographer you know, I often find pics on my camera of images that he has taken from around the house. Sometimes it's a close up of the dogs eye, sometimes a favourite object -- once it was just a picture of our upstairs hallway, when I asked him what the picture was of, he said "That's Bianca" (one of his imaginary friends.) My bad, I didn't recognize her....

Anyway, so here I am, for all of you that were wondering what I looked like...

Friday, February 13, 2009

Friday's fabulous finds

I thought I'd start a new little something over here, as I tend to peruse a great many blogs every day, I thought I should start sharing the love, so my plan is, each Friday, to post about something great that I have found, and link it back to the site I found it at.

We shall begin with this neat little idea that I saw featured at The Stamford Wife.

She had linked it from Design Sponge which is where I got the copy of this picture -- this is definitely a project I need to try, I have tons of this kind of stuff lying around -- I love the Key motif -- a heart or flower would be neat too!



Your welcome!

Cupcake update

I had a cupcake for breakfast this morning (I told you, I was THAT kind of mother!) and boy, were they tasty!!! I have to have a few more to be sure, so I will need to whip up another batch, as this one is headed to school this morning (maybe no one will like them, and they will all come back...would that be humiliating, or a pleasant surprise, as we would get to eat them all?!?)

Anyway, the cake was much more filling than standard cake mix, I've never made cake from scratch before....I like it!! Thank you Magnolia Bakery! My next attempt is going to be Red Velvet cake -- maybe I'll try that today!

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Valentine's Day party

I confess, I'm not much into Valentine's day ---- years ago I broke up with someone on Valentine's day, that probably took the shine off the holiday, and I also think it's so over commercialized -- there is just too much pressure! We gave up going out for Valentine's meals long ago,it seemed to become just a night where restaurants limit their menus, jack up their prices, and try to get you out as fast as possible. But, it's fun for the kiddos --- so tonight we made homemade cupcakes to bring to his Valentine celebration at school tomorrow.

Now, Limefreckle Jr. is what one would call a "cupcake connoisseur".....the kid LOVES, LOVES, LOVES cupcakes! He eats them all the time (yes, I'm THAT kind of mother). I thought "hey, why make just the plain, ole boring cake mix and store bought frosting for my little prince.....how about some genuine, homemade goodies? So I promptly googled "Magnolia bakery" because I heard of that place on "Sex and the City" and if it's good enough for Carrie Bradshaw, it's good enough for me....so I found this recipe for standard vanilla cupcakes, and vanilla butter cream icing.

One pound of butter later, I had the cupcakes fresh out of the oven -- so far, so good! I bought foil liners, to add a little "pizazz" (because I'm sure the boys at Kenny's school -- his new school is all boys -- will notice the little details)



Then, 8 cups of icing sugar later, I had this:



I absolutely love my Kitchen aid mixer -- I don't bake that often, but when I do, it makes the whole job a whole lot easier. You will notice the messy spatula on the counter -- yes, I'm a messy, messy cook (Mr. Limefreckle hates that!).

Speaking of spatulas, I was in my teens before I realized that SPATULA was pronounced "SPAT - CHEW - LA"....not "SPAT- TOOL - LA" as I foolishly called it one day in front of my mother and brother.....OK, so I didn't cook much back then, and didn't know what else to call the funny rubber spoon......they have never let me forget that.

Anyhoo, so after I made the icing, I called Limefreckle Jr. over to taste it....AND HE DIDN'T LIKE IT!!!!! How the heck is that for gratitude? I'm up all night, slaving over a hot stove, testing new recipes, and he would have preferred that I opened up a can of icing ----- I added a bit more icing sugar, hoping to stiffen it up a bit....then piped it on and decorated them. Voila:



Then I loaded them into my trusty cupcake caddy, and they are all ready for tomorrow -- let's hope I don't forget them on the kitchen counter!



Everyone needs a cupcake caddy for handy cupcake transportation. Now let's hope Limefreckle Jr. isn't humiliated in front of his peers, with substandard cupcakes at the party tomorrow!

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Cute sayings

I love cute little sayings. I love to read them, to have a laugh, to be inspired, whatever. I have them all over my house, different pillows, coasters, even some writing on the wall:














Sunday, February 8, 2009

Family photos



This wall up the side of my staircase has been empty since we moved into this house over 13 years ago. I could never quite figure out what to put here. I started to collect old black and white family photos to create a wall of pictures a few years back -- and this past summer I finally put everything up. Now, I was impatient, and ended up buying most of these frames, so it wasn't a completely inexpensive project -- although I did use a LOT of dollar store frames and mattes, and I bought the rest of the frames at Walmart, or at Micheal's, either using the 40% off coupon, or when frames are on sale (which seems to happen fairly frequently). If you wanted to do this on a budget, I think the best way to do this is to start collecting old frames and spray paint them all one colour. I think the key to making it look good is to be sure to vary the size of the frames, the widths of the frames, and the shape of the frames. I also didn't use mattes in every single frame, that also helps to create visual interest.

I personally prefer the look of all black and white photos. I have another wall upstairs of all colour photos, and I like that look too, but personally, I don't like the mix -- but hey, that's just me -- I'm a firm believer that if it looks good to your eye (after all, it's your eye that has to look at it) then it's right!

Another thing that I tried to do to make this a little more "fun" was to use pictures that might surprise a bit -- maybe don't use just traditional posed pictures, but pictures that tell a story (for example, one wedding photo that I have up there isn't a traditional head on shot, but a shot as the bride and groom left the church, and guests were throwing confetti).

Another tip that my Mom gave me, was to add something that might not be a family photo at all. For example this picture:



We don't really have any circus performers in our family tree (not professionals, anyway!) This was a card given to Limefreckle Jr. years ago, and he has ALWAYS, ALWAYS, ALWAYS been an elephant lover -- so it just seemed fitting that I should frame it and add it to the wall!



This guy just looks so interesting I had to add him in (he's one of my relatives, but the relation escapes me right now --- I still have a hard time remembering who everyone is -- but my brother can tell!)



This is my Great Grandfather, with John Diefenbaker, the 13th Prime Minister of Canada. My Great Grandfather was a politician, he was mayor of the town he lived in for 37 years, and he was also a member of our provincial parliament.



And this is me as a baby -- I tried to represent everyone in our family on this wall. I'm lucky, my Mom's family kept a lot of pictures from waaaaay back, so I had a very diverse group of pictures to choose from.

Basically whatever inspires conversastion, makes you think, makes you happy -- that's what should go up on your wall! I like the fact that every person on the wall is related to Limefreckle Jr. in one way or another.

Oh, and many of these pictures are just photocopies --- I don't know how long them will hold up, they've been up there for awhile now, and so far so good! Some are original pictures, but most are scanned images printed from my computer.

If you have a wall like this, or attempt a wall like this, please comment I'd love to see it!

learning in creative ways

Limefreckle Jr. has not wanted to do anything even remotely related to school work, since about the second week of September. He would announce frequently that he "doesn't know how to do math, doesn't know how to read, to write, etc." It's been incredibly frustrating, that was one of the main reasons that Mr. Limefreckle and I chose to take him out of the public school system, and find a private school for him -- because we could just see his skill set slipping away, and the constant fight with the school and the school board to get him the help that he needs resulted in bad feelings and lots of frustration, but we didn't get closer to helping Limefreckle Jr. fit in. I often remark that if the board and the school spent as much time trying to find help for these kids, as they do trying to get rid of these kids, everyone would be so much happier!

Anyway, so it's been one week at the new private school. Life has done a 180 degree turn here at Limefreckle Lane, everyone is relaxed, everyone is happy, Mom is sleeping straight through the night for the first time since summer -- and surprisingly, Limefreckle Jr. wants to learn again ---

I was sitting in my studio, checking email etc., and he came in and helped him self to some knitting needles. Then, periodically, he would come in and ask me questions like "how do you make an uppercase G?" - I would show him in the air, and off he would go. He came to collect Mr. Limefreckle and me, to show us his work of art -- the alphabet, in it's entirety, "written" on the carpet, using the knitting needles. Now you have to know Limefreckle Jr. to know how great this is....writing is not his strong suit.....he can barely hold a pencil and really struggles with it ---- but apparently writing with knitting needles on the carpet is a little bit easier!! I KNEW that spending a little extra for the really plush carpet was a good idea!

Thursday, February 5, 2009

Imaginary friends

Limefreckle Jr. has a lot of imaginary friends. Partly, I believe this may come from being an only child, and trying to create brothers and sisters for himself --- he has an older brother, and a younger sister, and they come with us frequently places --- I also think he uses them as a way to help alleviate anxiety about things, and navigate this social world that can be so complicated for him. I sometimes hear them all fighting, while he tries to break things up ---. He has a lot of imaginary animal friends too, he has a dog named Jack Black, one named Rex, one named Dr. Doolittle, and a Chihuahua named, simply Chihuahua.

I think some teachers in the past have had their concerns about his imaginary world, and I think if he truly lived in this world exclusively, I might worry too --- but I am not concerned with this behaviour -- I love the opportunity these imaginary friends give me to teach him......for example, last night, for some reason, he was not interested in showering, no way, no how. He wants to be dirty, he's happy being dirty, he's afraid his beautiful skin will get wet (don't ask me what the issue is with getting wet....he has no problem jumping into a pool at any opportunity, but doesn't want to get wet in the shower!) I was trying everything to coerce him under the stream of water, I turned it on, called out to his "older brother" and suggested he get in......Limefreckle Jr. looked at me like I was crazy and said "he's imaginary Mom, imaginary friends don't take showers"......

Point taken.

I did finally coax him in by the way, by concocting a special "scrub" made of baby oil and epsom salts -- I told him it's the same lotion that animals use to keep their coats shiny and clean --- it intrigued him, and as I rubbed it on his back he sighed and instantly relaxed ---- and the problem with the shower was averted.

I remember when I was in grade 2 (the same age as Limefreckle Jr. is now) I had an imaginary sister. I remember distinctly walking to school with her.....whatever I was wearing, she had on the opposite -- ie. if I was wearing pink cords and a turquoise t-shirt, she was wearing turquoise cords and a pink t- shirt, exactly the same (hello people, it was the 70's!!) I don't remember what her name was, but I do remember her providing me with some level of comfort, some level of familiarity, which I'm sure is the same reason Limefreckle Jr. has imaginary friends - how can that be wrong! So I embrace this imaginary world, I join it, I learn from it.......and I am CONSTANTLY entertained --- and as long as he can still embrace our regular world along with his imaginary one ---- then by all means, invite these friends over for cupcakes!

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

New Beginnings...

If you read my blog regularly, (and let's face it, who doesn't?) then you know that Limefreckle Jr. has been diagnosed with PDD-NOS, which is along the autism spectrum. He's one of the most engaging, sweet, funny 7 year olds I've ever had the pleasure to know....he's a firecracker, he has loads of personality -- AND he's a handful! School has not been easy for him. Preschool was difficult, he didn't fit in, the teachers couldn't agree with the aides that worked with him, as far as how to discipline and best teach him to follow the rules. I would always hear from the teachers at this particular school, that it wasn't fair to the other children, when he disrupted things. Kindergarten wasn't much better, he still didn't fit in (yet it's amazing how he continues to make friends....some kids are just drawn to him, and don't seem to even notice that he doesn't behave like everyone else). In Grade 1 we got lucky, and I thought we had turned a corner, and we were going to make it. All the stars aligned, and for the most part, we had a pretty good year.

Alas, Grade 2 has been a nightmare. Staff shortages were announced at the beginning of the year ---- aides were forced to group children together, not based on what was best for the children that required assistance, but what could be done with the limited staff available. I've been called to the school several times to come pick him up, as he was not following the rules, and would not behave. Picking him up was reinforcing the bad behaviour, but clearly the school staff was often at the end of their rope, and there didn't seem to be any alternatives. A special education class was suggested to me, at another school --- I wasn't allowed to view it with any children in it mind you, had to go after hours -- and it just didn't feel right, and if I've learned NOTHING over the past 7 years, I've learned to go with my gut feelings!

So, we struggled along this year, but it became pretty clear to us that if he was to ever succeed in school we were going to need to find a place that understood him, that wanted him, and that could effectively educate him. We found that school, a private school, and yesterday was Limefreckle Jr's first day there. What an atmosphere! We knew when we first went to visit, that this was the place for him. The number ONE thing that I think is going to make the difference, is we feel so WELCOME! My experience in public education so far has pretty much made us feel that if he can't fit in and behave like all the other children, then he is not welcome. I always felt that we had to explain ourselves to the other families....to the families of the typical children, who, after all, were the children that public school was designed for. Our tipping point at our previous school came when it was suggested that perhaps we should write a letter to the parents of the other children in Limefreckle Jr's class, to explain his condition and his behaviours--- when that suggestion was made to me (and believe me, I do think it was made with the best of intentions) I realized that the school we were attending didn't really believe in true inclusion.

So here we are, driving quite a distance every day in order to attend, (of all the private schools we looked at, NONE of them were in our area!) but so happy that we have finally found somewhere that he is understood, and wanted. We have given up on worrying about inclusion at this point (this school is strictly for children on the spectrum) He attends so many out of school activities, gym classes, swimming lessons, basketball lessons, that I am sure we can still focus on inclusion in these settings. We have made many friends that we will keep in touch with. Down the road, who knows, the public system might be right for him -- we will take it a year at a time. I'm feeling so relaxed all ready, I'm sure we have made the right decision!

Monday, February 2, 2009

Groundhog, groundhog what do you see?


I have this song running through my head that Limefreckle Jr. has been singing......apparently Punxsutawney Phil saw his shadow --- so six more weeks of winter --- I'm sitting here waiting for Wiarton Willie's prediction ( one of the Canadian versions) --- there is also one in Nova Scotia, who saw his shadow too....so things aren't looking good!!!

By the way, whose idea was it to name a place "Punxsutawney????" Poor kindergarten kids in that town, trying to learn how to spell where they live!

Sunday, February 1, 2009

Kitchen counter continued...



This is my new "command post" to keep receipts, bills, important papers etc., and so far it is working very well! "Decorating" the counter top has really helped me not to clutter it up every day --- stuff does land there still, I won't lie, but it gets put away nightly --- I don't know why having some decorative items there seems to make me tidy it much faster than I did when it was just a bare empty space!!!

I started out with this from Homesense:



I was looking for something to hold pens and the like, and had a silver cup in my basket, when my trusty shopping pal spotted this, on sale for $2.99:



Perfect for pens, scissors, etc. I was going to paint it white, but it looks great the way it is, so it stays. It replaces this lovely Toronto Maple Leaf bobble head pen holder:



Mr. Limefreckle thought that this was a perfectly acceptable kitchen counter top accessory.......I disagree, and sent it up to Limefreckle Jr's room. Or perhaps Mr. Limefreckle would like it for his office???

Anyway, I found some great file folders that zipper open at the dollar store, these store my bills, receipts, and miscellaneous papers that seem to overtake us all. Each one is labeled (have I mentioned how much I love my label maker?) and life is good.