two Toronto teens sent the first Lego man to space
here is a little interview with them about their acheivement:
you might remember this monster suit from a few years ago? (he looks so little!!) well, it's finally too small.
(photo shoot at the St. Lawrence Market!)
and I have to share this video- a perfect job for grown-up Asa!!!
it is really funny- it has one swear (the B word) in it but otherwise child friendly (well, if you don't mind hot half-naked men- but in a good way) and the kids LOVE IT!!
if you can take 5 minutes to watch this video i think you'll be glad you did.
today is the national Terry Fox Run day. This weekend on the Island we had a Terry Fox run and also a swim, a soccer game and a baseball game. Terry Fox is a Canadian icon and hero- for those of you who don't know who he was, here's an introduction from the Terry Fox website:
Terry Fox was born in Winnipeg, Manitoba, and raised in Port Coquitlam, British Columbia, a community near Vancouver on Canada's west coast. An active teenager involved in many sports, Terry was only 18 years old when he was diagnosed with osteogenic sarcoma (bone cancer) and forced to have his right leg amputated 15 centimetres (six inches) above the knee in 1977.
While in hospital, Terry was so overcome by the suffering of other cancer patients, many of them young children, that he decided to run across Canada to raise money for cancer research.
He would call his journey the Marathon of Hope.It was a journey that Canadians never forgot.
After 18 months and running over 5,000 kilometres (3,107 miles) to prepare, Terry started his run in St. John’s, Newfoundland on April 12, 1980 with little fanfare. Although it was difficult to garner attention in the beginning, enthusiasm soon grew, and the money collected along his route began to mount. He ran 42 kilometres (26 miles) a day through Canada's Atlantic provinces, Quebec and Ontario. However, on September 1st, after 143 days and 5,373 kilometres (3,339 miles), Terry was forced to stop running outside of Thunder Bay, Ontario because cancer had appeared in his lungs. An entire nation was stunned and saddened. Terry passed away on June 28, 1981 at the age 22.
The heroic Canadian was gone, but his legacy was just beginning.
To date, more than $400 million has been raised worldwide for cancer research in Terry's name through the annual Terry Fox Run, held across Canada and around the world.
I started running for real 2 years ago for the Terry Fox run. A friend had died from cancer a week before and i wanted to do something hard- so I ran the 10K- twice as far as I had ever run previously. I got hooked on running and now i am training for my second half-marathon. I am still pretty slow, and I find running hard, but every time i think it's hard i think of Terry Fox running a marathon a day on one leg and I keep going.
Tonight as everyone else was palying krokonole i read this book by Douglas Coupland Terry: Terry Fox and His Marathon of Hope and tried not to cry too loudly. Not because i was necessarily sad about Terry or anyone else who has died of cancer, but because i was so moved by the monumentality and selflessness of his Marathon of Hope.
Terry Fox is a real hero.
Check out this collection of photos of newlyweds in New York. I was so moved by them. Here are a few of my favourites:
(all images via Buzzfeed)
Fortunately, Vermont had already passed gay marriage so my dad and his partner and my mom and her partner were already able to get married. Go United States! Catch up to Canada and make gay marriage legal everywhere!
i discovered Sweetapolita's cakes and blog the other day. they are absolutely inspiring! I may have to take some cake decorating classes.
her fondant asparagus 8 layer chocolate cake:
(Sweetapolita's post about her asparagus cake here)
lemon blueberry cake (here's the link)
Rosie's daughter's Rainbow Doodle birthday cake. white fondant icing- decorated by the birthday girl with edible ink markers - original post here
Wow! Maxine and Asa's birthdays are coming up so I can really go for it after all this inspiration.
breakfast this morning:
green smoothies! (frozen kale, blueberries, and mango, salba seeds, almond milk, Greens+ powder)
I am on Day 17 of a 21 Day cleanse. It's called Clean- I heard about it from Goop (okay, I admit it- I read Gwyneth's newsletter- AND i even take her advice! well, this time anyway) a few months ago and I was intrigued. I bought the book (Clean: The Revolutionary Program to Restore the Body's Natural Ability to Heal Itself) and was convinced it was something that would be good for me.
basically it comes down to this:
liquid breakfast, liquid dinner. at least a 12 hour window at night between dinner and breakfast, no snacking!-
lunch- anything you want that is considered "Clean": NO soy, red meat, dairy, eggs, sugar/sweet things, alcohol, caffeine, corn, gluten (wheat or other glutinous grains), citrus, nightshade vegetables (potatoes, tomatoes, eggplant, peppers) or bananas. whole grains, unprocessed, raw, lightly cooked is encouraged. the idea is that the 'NO' stuff is hard to digest or allegenic- and if you make digestion really easy, your body can use the extra energy to clean itself out. I haven't noticed any crazy 'detox' symptoms, but I am pretty sure it still must be happening.
various supplements outlined in the book, lots of water.
it hasn't been too bad. the one thing I am cheating on is that i didn't give up caffeine- although I have cut down from 3 cups of tea a day to just 1. I knew I would never do it if I had to give up that first cup in the morning. It's what gets me out of bed. the hardest thing is making food for everyone else. Pizza! Quesadillas! Eggs! But I tell myself it's only 3 weeks and I manage.
Positive effects so far: I have been sleeping better, my skin feels softer, i have lost a bit of weight (I call it baby weight, but more realistically it's i-usually-eat-whatever-i-want-and-i'm-getting-older weight). I've realized I don't need to eat nearly as much as I usually do. I was really hungry the first couple of days but then my body adjusted. I realized how often i eat because it's there or because it tastes really good- not that that's bad necessarily, but just not good to do all the time. I'm also eating (well, drinking) WAY more green things- spinach, kale- in my smoothie. I plan on keeping up with the smoothies (and if I burn out the motor on my current blender, I'm going to save up for this baby: the Vita-Mix 1300 TurboBlend 4500) I'm thinking about doing this program 1 day a week, or 1 week a month- something like that. I'd like to continue with eating healthier in general.
here's a little movie from The Clean People:
Mothering magazine is no more.
this is their last issue! (their website will continue)
Editor Peggy Mara cited a change in people's habits (more computer, less reading) as well as fewer subscriptions and advertisers due to the recession.
Mothering was so important for those of us on the fringe of mainstream North American parenting culture. The magazine was not only a source of information, but provided a sense of community. Reading about other parents who made choices similar to mine made me feel not as fringe-y as I might have otherwise felt, and also gave me the confidence to follow my heart and parent in the way to which i was intuitively drawn.
RIP Mothering magazine. I will miss you!
Pee Wee's friend: "I know you're right, Pee Wee, but..."
Pee Wee: sigh... "Everyone I know has a big but..."
last night we watched Pee Wee's Big Adventure with the kids. Oh man is that movie funny! it was one of my favourite movies as a teenager, but i hadn't seen it in years. It stood the test of time. from 3 years old to 40, we all enjoyed it.
"I know you are but what am i?"
I attended a lovely celebration on the weekend. a young friend of mine recently began menstruating and she and her mother threw a small party to celebrate.
Is this not the loveliest idea?
my friend and her mother invited a few close female friends and relatives for the afternoon.
we all wore red and brought red food to share. One friend who is Japanese Canadian brought red beans and rice which is a traditional celebratory food in Japan. Along with red Jello, red salsa and chips, red candy, strawberries and chocolate, and a red (well, dark pink) cake, we had pink champagne and pomegranate juice.
one cannot forget crafts at a gathering of women and girls! we each thought of a word to describe our friend and we made her a t-shirt using freezer paper stencils.
which is supposed to represent a pomegranate. I latched on to the idea of a pomegranate necklace because the fruit is a symbol of fertility. until she is ready to have babies, i hope that she will be blessed with fertility in her ideas, her relationships, and her creativity.
i thought it was such a lovely celebration. it was so great to turn an event that is usually thought of with embarrassment and shame into one that was celebrated with joy and love.
i love this!
but i also love this song and video... i think i have a bit of a crush on Katy Perry! 'fine fresh fierce' and fun. and i LOVE the costumes- so creative. (my old career was in costumes for film and tv, so i always notice the costumes!)
"would you like some tea, Mama?"
for Maxine's 3rd birthday, our friends rehabilitated their daughter's toy kitchen to pass on to us. All our toy kitchen stuff was packed away as the boys had mostly shunned it in favour of Lego, so I got it all back out.
Instant fantastic birthday present!!
I also made her a little mattress and bedding for this doll bed a neighbour girl gave us.
Over the years we have amassed a pretty nice collection of utensils, dishes, pots, toy food and tea sets, but the boys used this vintage Fisher Price stovetop and when they were done it all got packed away in a basket. (Lee used this injustice as YET ANOTHER reason why Maxine has it so much better than he or Asa did).
With her little table and chairs, doll bed, dolls, and toy high chair, it is quite a sweet little set up! It is so enticing that Asa plays house with her sometimes. (although the other day they were taking the babies for a walk and he ran into a friend and immediately shouted "Hey Owen! I'm carrying my sister's doll for her!")
Maxine now works away in her kitchen as i work in mine... my goal now is to approach my work with the same spirit of joy she finds in hers!
my bro-in-law- "Uncle Ez"- and professional stiltdancer- was performing in Toronto's annual Buskerfest. He is quite amazing- out there dancing and engaging the crowd in a really fun and energized way. We found him right away- here he is in costume change number one-
and then took in a fire/circus-y/juggler/hulahoop act- which Lee loved: "I definitely want to see a fire juggler today" he said as we arrived.
as we were looking for Uncle Ez again we saw the most amazing act: 3 guys from a Netherlands theatre company on stilts in these completely awesome dinosaur suits (each of these creatures was just one guy on stilts inside!)
the three dinos walked through the crowd and would circle around and dip their heads down. they had some sort of speakers in the heads and made these eerie sounds. i was quite blown away by their beauty, fearsomeness, and creativity.
here's a video of the Sau'rus performance so you can get a sense of it
and then the lovely Uncle Ez in his final costume of the day-
a fun day for sure!
(image via article below)
check out this article from New York Magazine. i have been thinking about it for the last 24 hours.
while i LOVE being a mom, and having kids, and wouldn't ever change my decision- it is HARD. i'm glad to know i'm not alone.
what do you think?
here's a beautiful film by a friend and neighbour, Kathleen Doody, that is about our neighbour and friend Margaret who died from breast cancer this fall and our women's weekly hockey games on the Island.
it's a really beautiful little film: a moving remembrance of Margaret, a fun story about women and girls and sports, and a window into our Island community. i hope you can take a few minutes to watch it.
(Margaret's eldest daughter and the brand new "Margaret Philp Cup" pictured below)
check out this cool video if you are interested in sustainable living/small homes (laneway housing in Vancouver)
this feature's a project of my Vancouver brother-in-law's company (he's the co-founder of SmallWorks- a small house design and building company) (but he's not in the video)
okay, have you watched this show?
we watched the first episode of Glee last night (and now i can't watch anymore til my sister gets here in 9 long days- i promised) and it was so good! i have a few friends who have been really into it, and despite my love for quality TV series, i was uninterested- high school? glee club? singing? Bizarre.
BUT it won me over. in a huge way.
nostalgia? lost youth? if you're my age (sort of old but not yet over the hill) the music (at least from this first episode) will take you right back- kind of like this: (this song isn't in the show- i just like it!)
it's got sturdy screen windows all around that zip open, it's a cozy seat, and it's taken the place of 2 trunks full of stuffies in the kids' tiny attic bedroom! we ALL love it.
(oh- look at that poor baby with no clothes. maybe Santa will bring some sweet little doll clothes this year)
:: going to see Whip It with my man- I loved it! girl power for all ages
:: doing the old seasonal clothing switchover
:: looking forward to the arrival of a cool item from this modern furniture website
:: shoe shopping for all three kids for my dad's wedding (and getting ready for the trip to Vermont!)
:: challenging myself to run 10 K once a week (5K the other 2-3 times)
:: wanting to make a cute dress like this for Maxine
:: making a poncho for Maxine
:: enjoying homeschooling with Lee
:: waiting for our monarch to emerge
i hope your weekend is lovely!
i'm going to be completely honest- this is why i haven't been posting much lately:Mad Men.
we've watched 31 (almost 1 hour) episodes in the last 3 weeks- seasons 1 and 2, and what's been on so far of season 3. oh my. it is so good!
my man and i never watch series when they actually start. in fact we don't actually watch much tv at all. we always wait to see what's going to prove worthwhile, what sticks around. then we completely binge. we watched the first 5 seasons of The Sopranos in a matter of months when Asa was a baby. and i can't forget The Office, Weeds, Deadwood, Curb Your Enthusiasm, Entourage and Six Feet Under. (okay that sounds like a lot of tv! but it's over the past 5 years...)
I love watching series this way- i get so immersed in the characters and their development, and lose myself in the story. i always get wistful when we've watched them all, but i also feel so free!
one of the best things about our trip was our visit to the Shelburne Museum. go there if you can! it's amazing!
it was started by Electra Havemeyer Webb in 1947. from the museum's website: "When creating the Museum she took the imaginative step of collecting 18th- and 19th-century buildings from New England and New York in which to display the Museum's holdings, relocating 20 historic structures to Shelburne. These include houses, barns, a meeting house, a one-room schoolhouse, a lighthouse, a jail, a general store, a covered bridge, and the 220-foot steamboat Ticonderoga." Don't forget the Webb family's private train, and the old Shelburne train station, and a 518 foot hand-carved miniature circus parade and a 3,500 piece miniature 3 ring circus (the boys especially loved those). The museum also has an extensive collection of folk-art and quilts. When Mrs. Webb died a special building was created to recreate her New York City apartment, with everything inside it, including her $350 million worth of Impressionist art and all her furniture and interiors. Right now there is an amazing Tiffany exhibit and a motorcycle exhibit.
when i was a kid, I went ever year with my elementary school class and i LOVED it. i hadn't been back for years. it was EVEN BETTER than i remembered! How often does that happen?! Lee and Asa liked it too.
here are my favourite things from this visit (no way can you see it all in one day):
a 1790's Vermont house. interactive for kids- see how they made their food and how flax is processed to make linen (amazing process! 1 acre of flax would yield 1 linen bedsheet) here's Asa threshing some flax.
the steamship Ticonderoga- a beautiful boat
the 1950's house. This house was adjacent to the museum. when it came up for sale they bought it and recreated a 1950 family home.
I can't wait to go back next year and take my man there. My dad's partner works there now as a docent, so we will definitely go back often!
have a good day!