Thursday, March 27, 2014

"Storm of the Decade"

It has been a crazy day and a half! The Canadian Maritime Provinces was just walloped with what they were anticipating to be the worst storm in ten years. They were predicting up to 40 cm (16 inches) and winds of over 100 Km per hour (~ 62 mph). That was in New Brunswick, where we live. In our neighboring provinces of Nova Scotia and Newfoundland, they were predicting worse.

It started Tuesday evening, flurries just after 5 PM. By Wednesday morning, we had about 3 inches and it appeared to be clearing up. Maybe it missed us? They had already cancelled schools and even closed the University and colleges and unfortunately by 9 AM the wind started picking up. Around 9:30, it started snowing again. I took this picture around lunchtime, it is directly outside our door. 

This second was taken mid afternoon outside the back door. The tree is about 15 feet away.

It took three tries to get the picture, the wind kept coming up making it a white out.

So, we stayed in all day. We were surprised to get a knock on the door around lunchtime, Purolator had a parcel for Salean! I used her Huggies points to help get a set of stacking cups from Discovery Toys. As the day wore on, we heard news of more and more closing. The malls and most stores shut down by 2 PM. The buses were hauled off at 4 PM. Snowplows and tow trucks that were not clearing for emergencies were off by 7 PM. Cars were being abandoned everywhere due to drifts. Finally, they closed the highway between New Brunswick and Nova Scotia. Since the bridge and ferry to PEI had been shut down earlier in the day, for the first time ever, all three provinces were on their own.

Every couple of hours, Mr Man had to go out for a precious smoke, each time he had to shovel 2 feet of snow from in front of the door. This is the pile he had created by about 10 PM, a few hours after the wind had shifted and stopped blowing us in. Please disregard the reflection of my messy kitchen. 

Here are a couple more I took at the same time, just before heading to bed. 

The wind howled all night but it had stopped snowing. Thursday dawned bright and cold. No school again today! The University and both colleges cancelled morning classes. 

Here are some pictures I took this morning while Mr Man started clearing. 

He had to get in the passenger side of the truck because it was drifted up the driver's side.

The drift that made up the end of the driveway. He estimates it is about 4 feet deep. 

There are two garbage cans here, believe it or not. One is completely buried.

The old snow pile from previous storms. It is probably about 6 feet high, as it was definitely over my head!

We are not getting out the back door any time soon.

Coffee was needed, so Big Red was dug out and then he blasted through the drift. He said the roads were not that bad. 

The below picture was after all the snow from around the house was pushed to the centre of the driveway so the snow plow could take it away. 

And they had to bring in he big guns: an excavator. The last time we had this much snow (in February) the regular plow got stuck. They were taking no chances this time! 

So, that is the big storm of the decade, at least in our little part of Quispamsis, New Brunswick. And now they are calling for oodles of rain the next three hopefully the snow will float away and we will finally get a proper Spring!

Hope everyone is having a good week!!


Monday, March 24, 2014

Sensory Box for Toddlers

This is another Pintrest find, lately I have been looking for things specific to toddlers. Salean is very active and I would like her to have more things to play with, but less toys, if you get what I mean. This was an easy one to make, I managed it in about three hours. She actually napped those three hours!! It was the longest she had napped since she was about 2 months old! A few days later, I spent another 15 minutes or so repairing it. She's pretty rough :-)

Basically I took a box and just threw a bunch of stuff on it. This is the inside. I used a small box that some books came in. I ended up gluing it closed with hot glue because after the first playtime, she tore off the tape that had sealed it closed.

The ribbons: purple, maroon, pink stripes, black with dots, and the yarn, are pulling toys. Pull one end, it grows and the other side shrinks.

Side one: A foam snowman, pink ribbon for pulling, yarn for pulling and two elastics for strumming. I also painted on some hearts to look pretty. The snowman is hot glued on, but he lost his arms pretty quickly.

Side two: Some pipe cleaners for petting (so soft!), a ribbon for pulling and Salean's name. It is mostly pulled off, as well. If I were to make this again, I would skip the foam pieces.This ribbon she pulled out after the first playtime, so I had to put a gob of hot glue on it so it could only pull so far.

Side three: Some mini pom poms for pulling/petting, more pulling ribbons and a shoelace. I had to give the pompoms more glue after the first playtime, and after a few playtimes the pink one is almost pulled off.

Side four: some more ribbons for pulling and some bug pasta for texture. They are stuck on pretty good!

And the top: two textured ribbons, some googly eyes, another pulling ribbon, a giant pompom and some lines of hot glue for texture. Since this was taken, I added some more glue to the ribbon and pompoms and two more strips of hot glue for texture.

As you can see, she really enjoys it. Everything to make it I had around the house, I think the only thing I bought was the two textured ribbons on top, and they were on sale for 50 cents each, and I have plenty left for another project.

Sorry so blurry, she moves fast!! So, apparently cheap homemade toys rock! I can't wait to make more!

Have a good week, everyone!!


Friday, March 21, 2014

Peanut Butter & Banana Cake

Happy First Day of Spring! It is finally here! It has been a long, cold, snowy winter, but it is finally looking up! The last 2 days have been a bit warmer, but the first two days this week were bitter cold! We started to get cabin fever and I had to find a new activity, which will be posted next week!

This recipe came in a Spring What's Cooking magazine from a couple years ago, I made it for a potluck at work and it was a hit! Everyone wanted the recipe! I decided to make it again this week just for something different. To find the recipe on the Kraft webpage, check out this LINK.

Peanut Butter & Banana Cake:

2 eggs.
1/2 cup oil.
1/2 cup sugar.
1/2 cup packed brown sugar.
1 cup mashed ripe bananas, about  three.
1+1/2 cup flour.
1 tsp baking powder.
1/2 tsp baking soda.
1/2 tsp salt.

1/3 cup peanut butter.
1 cup icing sugar.
1/4 cup milk.

Beat eggs, oil and sugars in mixer until smooth. Add bananas, mix well. In another bowl, combine flour, powder, soda and salt. Add to banana mixture, mixing well to combine. Pour into 9 inch prepared pan. Bake at 350 F for 30 to 35 minutes. Cool completely before frosting.

To make frosting, mix all three ingredients in mixer until well combined. Spread over cake.

It is a great recipe for kids, just like the classic peanut butter and banana sandwich! Salean had just a tiny bit, but she loved it!

The cake turned out very moist, and it baked with no issues. It also just slid out of the pan, although I had sprayed it. I didn't have enough oil so I used Becel, because last time I accidentally used it and it turned out fine.

The frosting was easy and delicious! It suggested if you are short on time to just mix some peanut butter into store bought frosting, but honestly I think this way would be much easier and quicker. I don't think i used the full quarter cup of milk. I mixed the peanut butter and sugar in the mixer, then slowly added a bit of milk while it ran, until it was the proper consistency. I think it may have only taken a couple tablespoons, so be careful if you do make this.

Delicious and maybe just a little bit nutritious. I will definitely be making this one again and again!

Happy Spring, everyone! Hope the weather is treating you nicely!


Wednesday, March 19, 2014

An Ongoing Calendar

A few years ago, I found a lovely little webpage called Pintrest. We all know about Pintrest. The wonderful webpage with so many ideas that makes time disappear! I love Pintrest. :-) This is one of the first ideas found on Pintrest that I tried. An ongoing memory calendar.

The first thing I bought was a small wooden box, I got it at the dollar store. I also picked up three packages of index cards. You need 366, one for each day of the year plus one for leap years.

To fancy it up a bit, I covered it in some patterned duct tape, also found at the dollar store. Yay for cheap crafts!

All you have to do is write in the year and a little one liner about the day! I also like to add a bit about the weather if it is unusual. As you can see, I was alternating red and blue, but Salean made off with my red pen last week, so now I am onto black.

Finally, tuck them into your box for safekeeping. I put the days that are past in the back and shuffle them to the right, just to keep them separate from the unwritten ones.

So, my first Pintrest craft was a success, and now I am into my third year of doing it! It is a great way to go back and remember things, especially with a baby, it is a great place to record all those little firsts!

Have a good day, everyone!!


Monday, March 17, 2014


Happy St Patrick's day! 

Here is an updated picture of our little jellybean, Miss Salean. 

She is 14 months old, and a little whirlwind!

We have had a very rough winter this year, a storm just about every Wednesday dropping anywhere between 2 and 12 inches each time! It piled up very fast! These pictures are from February 16th, we had two large storms that week, and this is after the first!

The pile she is sitting on is what Daddy cleared from the steps and along the side of both cars, a path that was barely a foot and a half wide, as you can see below.  

We held Salean's first birthday party on New Year's Day. She loved the cake!

The tutu, not so much. But, she put up with it for Mommy's sake :-) 

And finally, Salean celebrated her first Christmas. She was spoiled quite nicely!

These are all her gifts piled under Nanny and Grampy's tree. We ended up spending 3 days there, from the 23rd until the 25th, because of a huge ice storm. Our power was out only three days, where we stayed a day and a half; but others had no electricity until after the new year! 

Daddy helped while Mommy took pictures with her new camera! 

With breaks for breakfast and playing, because Daddy had to set everything up, it took two hours to unwrap everything. 

Favourite toys ended up being both the Little People Doll House and the Farm.

The Weebles playground was another favourite. 

And a really cool pink camo tent! 

All Salean's gifts under her own tree after we got home late Christmas day. 

And her first Christmas dinner at her other Nanny & Grampy's house. 

So, Salean is getting bigger and bigger; she started walking a few days before Christmas. She does not talk much, but her Doc is not worried because she is mimicking a lot and will tell you  Hello! 

I am back to blogging and am now on Twitter as CdnDmstcWannabe, and have a page on Facebook as well. 

Welcome back!