Posts tagged ‘Hockey mom’

May 17, 2011

Spot fabric and a birthday

I’m feeling very nostalgic today – my Drake is 16 today! I’m pondering the precious memories of holding Drake & sitting for hours reading his little board books over and over and over and…  When he started speaking, he did so in sentences – “Read this.”  My precocious 9 month old would then grab his little book in his chunky little hands and put his little arms up.  I’d pick him up, plop him in my lap, snuggle close and begin.  Good Night Moon…  Spot… Goodnight Gorilla…  Hungry Caterpillar…  Winnie the Pooh...

I cherished those moments & this fabulous Spot fabric makes my heart full – just look at this monkey full of mischief and cuteness…  I’m not usually into commercialized fabrics, but this Spot fabric won my heart.

Almost too cute to cut into, but I’m excited to transform these fabrics into some more handmade cuteness:)

Happy Birthday to an amazing, talented, kind, wise, smart and incredibly fun son!!  I love you so much!

The Lord your God is with you.
   He is a hero who saves you.
      He happily rejoices over you,
         renews you with his love,
            and celebrates over you with shouts of joy.

Zephaniah 3:17

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April 19, 2010

The Power of a Simple Apron

When I get blue and don’t want to budge, I instinctively search for a dose of inspiration (some days, a double dose). Often, I’m inspired by beautiful imagery such a lovely table setting or brilliantly designed floral arrangement. Other days, a powerful quotation will spark a fire in me. Housework, especially laundry – my personal nemesis, is an unending cycle of daily tasks that can bring down even the most dedicated, disciplined and visionary of mothers.

I’ve a secret weapon. Some people wear power ties or power shoes, my self-inspiring garb is a little less glamourous – it’s a power apron. Sure, I’ve been guilty of mocking pictures of mums in fancy apron and pumps, but now I’m in awe of those wise women who went before me. There’s power in a simple apron! When I tie those proverbial strings, my whole persona changes. I become “Mother” in the dearest sense, and I’m ready for work. I’m suddenly the heart of my home wiping noses, baking cookies, kneading dough, folding laundry, and….

My apron inspires me. It lightens my load. Like the glorious and faithful rainbow, we all need something external, tangible and pretty to serve as a remembrance. My apron reminds me of all the quotes I collected, verses memorized, the Martha Stewart magazines devoured, the countless books and articles absorbed, and the cookbooks read cover to cover in an effort to become a better mother, wife and homemaker. My little apron does all that and more (on a practical note, it even protects my clothes from inevitable doughy clumps). It truly is a power apron!

For more super cute aprons, check out:

www.squidoo.com/jessiesteeleaprons

www.flirtyaprons.comLove the cupcakes!

Fabulous color combination! Are you inspired, yet?

“We continually remember before our God and Father your work produced by faith, your labor prompted by love…” 1 Thessalonians 1:3

April 16, 2010

Le Fort Cafe Follow-Up: 1 and 1

Just a follow-up from Le Fort Cafe and the mad multi-tasking that goes on in a day. Okay, I’m 1 and 1. Here’s the breakdown (living in a sports-driven household, I speak with statistics – a language they can really understand!):

  • The Cherry Cobbler = Amazing! +1
  • The Ham Hock = RIP! -1

Moving on, then, from the Ham Hock Horror

For the cobbler recipe, I reworked my classic dumpling recipe which I use for both beef and chicken stews. If you’d like to recreate this heavenly delight….

  • Prepare cherries (or use the can variety)
  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees
  • Fill 9X13 pan with cherry filling
  • In food processor: add 2 cups flour, 1 T sugar, 1/2 tsp salt, 1 T baking power
  • Place cover and while it’s running add 1 frozen stick of butter (1/2 C butter) *
  • Mix until combined – should be crumbly in texture
  • Add 1/2 C of heavy cream while running processor
  • Should have the consistency of pie dough
  • Pat dough into about 9 pieces to top cherry filling
  • Sprinkle with sugar
  • Bake for approximately 20 – 25 minutes (depending on your oven)
  • Serve hot with REAL vanilla ice cream

Note: Before I had a food processor, I cut the frozen butter by hand using a pastry dough cutter (my sister actually uses a 2 knife method). In the long run, it probably is a faster method with less clean-up:)

EnJOY!

The LORD has done great things for us, and we are filled with joy. Psalm 126:3

June 11, 2009

I Spy with My Little Eye

glass.001I spy with my little eye something that starts with a M…

Since I was little girl, I’ve wanted to be a mommy – especially a mommy of boys. Growing up with only sisters, I desperately wanted a brother and prayed that God would make me the mother of sons. And when I played, there was always the mommy element to whatever I was doing. Playtime was serious training for my future role.

All little girls watch their mommies in hopes of gaining the skills, training, wisdom and resources needed for parenting, and I was no exception. My mother loved to bake all kinds of delicious treats – I watched. My mother gave generously of her time, energy and resources – I watched. My mother was passionate about her beliefs and her faith – I watched. But, my mother lacked something that I deeply desired: she wasn’t the mother of sons.

I distinctly remember searching for those mothers of boys. I watched as they nurtured their sons, and I watched as they cared for themselves, too. I listened to what they said to their sons and about their sons. I naturally gravitated to those who had the skills, wisdom and temperaments I wanted to exemplify. When they needed babysitters, I was the first to volunteer. 

While reading Nurture, my heart was quickened and reminded of this childhood search for mentoring and nurturing.Nurture As a young girl, I wasn’t enlightened enough to understand why I was drawn to these women, but now I see it so clearly. And whether good or bad, these women who were the wallpaper of my little life had no idea they were under a microscope. 

We are being watched by little eyes. The hearts of young girls are desperately searching for the tools, wisdom, training and skills they need to be good mommies. So keenly I am aware of this now. Last week was our final hockey tournament after a 6 weekend run; this was our home tournament. Colin, son number two, had implored me to come to his game on Sunday since they were playing for the championship.

“Mommy, could you pleeeeease find someone else to teach for you? You missed my last championship game…”

He was right – I’d actually missed a few championships. And because of a very gracious volunteer, I was able to rearrange things to be there. So, there I sat in the arena’s mezzanine with the two younger brothers competing for my lap and my attention. Distracted and tired, I had a choice to make. I could let their antics gnaw at me, or I could make a decision to patiently admonish and redirect. Two little girls were sitting near us. I felt them grow quieter and more attentive as my sons grew more active and disruptive. They were watching!

Now, it’s my turn – rather our turn. We are the wallpaper in the lives of little boys and little girls. Perhaps, we aren’t directly training or nurturing or directing, but we are setting a example whether good or bad. We do have a responsibility not only to our children to train them, but our responsibility extends far beyond our four walls.

I spy with my little eye something that starts with a M…

We can draw an inescapable conclusion: the older women are being watched by the younger. Whether you signed up to be an example or not, you are one. – Nurture by Lisa Bevere

May 1, 2009

Frugal Friday

p1010079Frugal Living is an art form and a skill I wish to cultivate in my life and home. It’s not just about saving money, conserving resources and being green.  What makes it an art is combining frugal standards while creating a nurturing and pampering environment. In other words, your family feels spoiled and loved not neglected and deprived.

Case in point, my sister is very passionate about green-living, but her family never feels like they are being given a raw deal. She is very nurturing while holding a high standard of green-ness (see her blog: mygreenside.wordpress.com).

Being frugal is conservation at its finest, and my goal is always to be a good steward of all God has given me. It is fascinating to study the lives of generations past who excelled at economical living, and to glean what may be applicable for my family and our life-style.

Frugal Friday is born of a desire to share little tid-bits I am learning on the way. So for my first installment, I am sharing my smoothie recipe. My son, Colin, is a AAA hockey goalie and today marks the first weekend of this season.  He knows as an athlete what goes into his body before a tournament weekend will affect his energy-level on the ice. This p10100281morning was a smoothie morning…p10100291

Jane’s Smoothies Recipe

  1. Fill the blender half way with plain yogurt (not vanilla or any pre-sweetened varieties – you control the sugar!) preferably organic or homemade
  2. Add enough orange juice to blend
  3. Throw in 1-2 frozen bananas and handfuls of frozen blueberries & raspberries
  4. Blend and serve

So, where is the frugalness? Let’s start with bananas. Many stores discount bananas once they brown and you can buy a bagful for a reasonable price.  Peel them and bag them and pop into the freezer.  When you are making smoothies and malts, they are the perfect addition for nutrition, thickening and frosty flavor.

Blueberries are a lovely fruit!  In season, you can find pints for around $2. At this point, I buy as many as I can. (Last year most of the blueberries I froze for the winter months, I picked from a local garden. The benefits of picking and purchasing locally are numerous. It is more cost effective to pick-your-own berries while soaking in the fragrant smell of berries – heavenly! Also, you know exactly where your money is going and where your food is coming from.) I place them on cookie sheets and pop in the freezer.  This way they freeze individually so it is easy to portion out for recipes.  After they are frozen on the cookies sheets, I fill quart bags and stick them back into the freezer. Frozen blueberries are so much easier to work with when making scones, muffins and blueberry pancakes.

All the above could be said of raspberries. They freeze well, too, and it is best to freeze individually before you bag them.p10100773 Having frozen blueberries and raspberries make for a great pop-in-your-mouth frozen treat – better than candy!

Happy Frugal Friday!

He who gathers crops in summer is a wise son… Proverbs 10:5a

April 30, 2009

Strangers Among Us

180px-chocolate_chip_cookies1Piles of laundry. Gallons of milk vanishing.  An endless list of missing items.  Coincidence?  I used to think so…

How does a family of 6 the amass so much laundry in one day?!  To where did the 2 gallons of milk disappear that were delivered just yesterday? – not to mention, the 5 dozen chocolate chip cookies freshly baked this morning? Why don’t I have any tea-towels when I just did laundry yesterday?!

10664A_CelestialSeasB

Then one evening as I sat sipping my Sleepytime tea in the comfort of my living room, I listened for the very first time.  I really listened.

And, these are the sounds that I overheard that fateful evening:

372px-dominator39First, I heard the Stanley Cup Championship Game being hard fought by the Detroit Red Wings and the San Jose Sharks. (I didn’t even know we had a rink in our house). It was a close contest, but alas the Detroit Red Wings lost in a dramatic shoot-out. Now, it seemed they needed bandages, ice baths and food – lots of food!

Just then, a blond flash in a tea-towel cape streaked through the room yelling, “Wonder Boy needs vegetables for super-hero power.”  Just as quick as he appeared, he disappeared.

At this point, I had a flash back from the day before. I had walked into one of the boy’s bedroom and there onwhiz2 the top bunk was a blazer and tie-clad preacher complete with The Rhyme Bible and a guitar. He was “preaching good” to a capacity crowd.

Hockey teams, super-heroes, mega-church pastors – I was just discovering what my children have known all along: There are strangers among us!

Can you image the piles of home and away jerseys I need to launder not to mention the mounds of hockey socks?  Do you know how many tea-towel capes an adventurous super-hero can go through in a single afternoon? Have you ever fed a congregation of hungry church-goers?

I’m not sure how to break it to my husband, or what his reaction might be. Personally, I am much relieved it to 526px-washer600pixknow the truth – finally! I was beginning to think I was loosing things. I was beginning to think my children were drinking milk like it is water. And, I was beginning to think I was a failing laundress.

So now, in my new found freedom (the truth always sets you free), I can put up my feet, sip my tea and laugh with the strangers among us!

Do not forget to entertain strangers, for by so doing some people have entertained angels without knowing it. Hebrews 13:2

April 3, 2009

Knitting: A Lesson in Perserverence

Perseverance must finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything. James 1:4

Okay, so here it is…

I began Drake’s first sock when Graeme was a baby (he is 4 now).  Between home-schooling 2 children, entertaining a pre-schooler  and nursing a little one, my life became quite sedetary.  Not wanted to be completely unproductive, I rediscovered knitting. My mother had been knitting the most amazing socks for years, and it was inspiring!  So, I began, and needless to say, I was hooked!

Considering I hadn’t knitted since I was probably 10, I did pretty well.  The sock yarn was lovely (free knitting tip: beautiful yarn hides imperfections), but I discovered after hours logged I found a noticeable flaw in the ribbing. That just wouldn’t do, so I unraveled the whole sock…

Fast forward two years, and I recovered my sock bag.  I was determined this time, and I was also spending many hours at hockey rinks.  The combination proved to be the perfect catalyst – finally Drake’s first sock was completed!  With momentum in my favor, quickly I began knitting the next sock.  What I didn’t figure into the equation was that Drake’s feet had grown…  Did I mention the younger brothers have several pairs of hand-knit socks now?

Being a hockey mom affords you ample time for knitting especially when your 11 year son absolutely needs to be at the rink 1 hour prior to games and practices.  So, this past season I was able to complete many knitting projects. And again, I began a new pair of socks for Drake.  The yarn is really beautiful with browns and rust and khaki-green in a self-striping pattern.  The first sock is done (and fits!), and the second sock is almost completed…

Did I mention the cat?

Tobias the Cat

Tobias the Cat