December 31st

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In 2014 I…
Quit drinking pop and eating potato chips almost completely, ran a successful kickstarter campaign that was fully funded AND on the front page (in spite of how many times I said “um” in the video), quit taking my thyroid medication (maybe forever!), and finally achieved adulthood by owning a proper dining room tale & chairs.

In 2015 I want to…
Launch my line of baby footwear, teach Gwen how to moonwalk, and cancel my gym membership.

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December 29th

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We are storing this Ovalia-style egg chair for Sym’s dad as he has no room in his apartment for it & it hasn’t sold yet. That’s right, it’s for sale! So if you are just starting your life of supervillainy and need to outfit your secret futuristic lair then have I got the chair for you! Seriously, email me if you want to buy this chair.

Gwen has been in fine form recently, expanding her vocabulary (she now says “nya” for no, or maybe she’s a Japanese cat? idk) and increasing her capacity for mischief exponentially by figuring out how to open the corner cupboard in the kitchen where most of the food is stored. All the cupboards have child locks on them, but the corner one opens at such an angle that she can slide it right off the lock. At first she would just take out her (empty) lunchbag and run around with it, but she soon discovered funner things, like bags of granola and Dutch-process cocoa powder and a whole entire package of blueberry muffin mix complete with little dehydrated blueberries. My vacuum cleaner has been getting quite the workout and I have to say I’ve never been happier that the property manager refused to replace the carpet in her room with laminate flooring (that is sarcasm).

Right now I’m working on getting sample pairs of boots made so I can finally launch Little Mountain! My goal is to make & photograph at least one pair each week and I’ll hopefully be ready in early- to mid-February. Of course all my samples are Gwen-sized so she reaps all the rewards: for Christmas she got a platinum leather pair and just yesterday I finished an AMAZING floral leather pair for her. I only have enough of the floral leather to make one more pair so I’m planning on doing a giveaway on my instagram in the upcoming weeks. I’m actually thinking I’ll do a bunch of giveaways of unique pairs, maybe every other month? So if you aren’t following me you should definitely start* because it’s gonna be great.
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*still tryna get my numbers back up after the great insta-purge last week**
**jk

December 26th

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Arts & crafts.
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Not very wintery at all.
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Weird reindeer on stilts playing a ukulele, as is traditional for Canadian Christmases.
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MORE CHURROS PLS.
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Worn out from all the Christmas cheer (or possibly the Christmas beer).
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Upon opening her gifts Gwen immediately changed into some of her new clothes and shut herself inside this toy gingerbread house.
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Cheers-ing with dessert forks.
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Christmas bits & pieces…

Taylor said it didn’t feel very Christmas-y this year, and I kind of have to agree. The weather was not really wintery at all, and not having Sym home definitely dampened the Christmas fun, just because Gwen doesn’t really “get” it yet (or maybe she does but just can’t tell us. WHO EVEN KNOWS). Last year Sym was with us on Christmas and the year before we had a much bigger do for Mini Christmas. Next year I’m sure Gwen will be all about it AND Sym will be here so it’ll be the most Christmas-y ever I think.

One thing I wanted to do this year was go up Grouse Mountain for the Peak of Christmas. It’s just nice, a quick 20 minute drive from our apartment and a gondola ride up a mountain and you’re in a winter wonderland! We didn’t end up going though, partly because Gwen’s been sick and a little miserable and partly because there isn’t even much snow on the mountain yet. You can see it from here and the trees don’t have any snow on them at all. Instead we took Gwen on the Christmas Train in Stanley Park. She liked the train well enough, and she LOVED eating churros, but after that when we were walking around looking at the lights she had her biggest meltdown ever. Taylor and I think the crowds of people just became too much for her, so we brought her home for soup & sandwiches and then bed.

Because Gwen has proven herself a pre-Christmas present opener we had all the gifts stashed in our room and only moved them under the tree after she’d gone to bed on Christmas Eve. Then, when she woke up on Christmas morning we changed and dressed her in her room and then came out into the living room, all dark except for the tree lights, and I think she appreciated the magic of it. She certainly appreciated opening her gifts! She got a lot of things, from all our family but we also went a little overboard on her gifts this year. I found so many good deals though, I couldn’t help it!

After a small power struggle with Taylor over whether to have ham or roast beef for Christmas dinner, logic prevailed ie I won and it was roast beef again. Every year I mess something up and this year it was the Yorkshire puddings, I was meant to cook them at 450° and I accidentally turned the stove up to almost 500°. OOPSIES. They weren’t burnt, just very very well-browned. Everything else was perfect though, and I think I may have achieved my greatest mashed potatoes yet; the trick is to leave half the skins on the potatoes and mash them with butter, sour cream and LOTS AND LOTS OF BACON FAT. Honestly, I’m never mashing potatoes without bacon fat again after this.

Now that Christmas is over and the mess from it is (mostly) cleaned up it’s time to start planning for our New Year’s Eve Feast and then the next major holiday ie MY BIRTHDAY. It’s just 6 weeks away and I only want two things: this chair and this cat*.

I hope everyone is having a happy holiday season!

* After Claire passed in September I really felt like I didn’t want to get another cat but then yesterday my brand-new, haven’t-saved-any-weird-words-to-it-yet tried to autocorrect “Christmas” to “Christmeows” WHICH IS OBVIOUSLY A SIGN I MEAN COME ON. So I looked on Petfinder and found that lil moppet and now I’m obsessed. The only problems are a) she’s at an SPCA 650km away (although they would transport her if I got approved for adoption) and b) we’re only allowed one pet in this apartment and currently have two and a half and Taylor for some reason thinks maybe we shouldn’t get another? WHATEVER, MAN.

December 22nd

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Sym is spending Christmas with her dad & his family this year so we celebrated Mini Christmas with her on Friday night. It was simple: Japanese food, matching Christmas pajamas for the girls (here & here) and watching the Pretty Little Liars ChristmAs special. In previous years we’ve opened more gifts on Mini Christmas but this year we’re sending all Sym’s presents to her grandma’s house and opening our presents here with Gwen on Christmas morning.

I have one gift I’m making that isn’t finished yet (it’s so close though, I will definitely finish it tonight), a couple banners I need to make & ship either today or tomorrow, and we have to plan out our Christmas food & alcohol shopping since I don’t want to be running to the store for anything last minute, but other than that there’s nothing left to do but eat, drink & be merry.

Happy Holidays, everyone!

December 19th

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Happy last day of work before I’m on holiday for one or possibly two weeks! I only booked off one week but the following week I might not have to work either. FINGERS CROSSED.

Yesterday I got myself a new phone, and I felt (and still kind of feel) weird and guilty about it? Usually I use my phones until they disintegrate in my hands (literally or figuratively, like a phone that stops functioning as a phone while maintaining it’s structural integrity isn’t much more use that one that falls apart), and my old phone was technically still working. Sure, the screen was cracked, the body was all bashed and dented, the camera was defective and half the time it refused to acknowledge the SIM card so I couldn’t make calls or send texts, but TECHNICALLY…

Sym’s account was eligible for an upgrade, but her phone is still working fine (It’s actually not even that old, she dropped her original one in the toilet and her dad got her a new one from the Apple Store) and ANYWAY I pay the bill so I get upgrade dibs. This time I’m going to take better care of my phone, so I put a screen protector on it for once and ordered a sweet case from Casetify, designed by my amazing friend Brittany Holloway-Brown for Hello Giggles! You can see all her designs as well as some by my other amazing friend Sara M Lyons here.

Putting the screen protector on was a total comedy of errors; I should have asked the guy at the cell phone kiosk to do it since finding somewhere in my apartment free of glitter and pet hair is LITERALLY impossible. I cleaned my kitchen island so carefully before I started and still ended up with two bits of glitter stuck under the screen protector, which is intensely annoying. Glitter stuck on everything, always. Truly, this is the story of my life.

Ok enough about phones. In much more exciting news I FINALLY have an appointment for Gwen’s speech assessment! It’s not until January 8th, five months after I first took her to the doctor about this, which is pretty ridic. Apparently once she’s assessed if they decide she needs therapy it’ll be another few months for that, which is even more ridic. But still! An appointment! Scheduled! Progress!

And in the most exciting news of all, she’s making some progress with speech on her own. She still mostly just makes sounds but they are sort of starting to be more similar to the words she’s trying to say, like “buh” for book, boot, button, binkie, etc. She says a lot of things starting with b I guess. She’ll also answer “yuh” or “yup” for yes if you ask her a question, and yesterday afternoon she used a real, actual noun to tell me something! Ok, the word was “poo” but like… I’ll take it! She actually patted the front of her diaper and said “poo-poo” to tell me she needed to be changed and this is just like a MASSIVE milestone for us. So sorry if this is tmi, but my toddler finally talked to me!

December 15th

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Hey internet, long time no blog. I know, I know, no one cares if you don’t post for a week and a half and it’s the world’s biggest blogging cliche to say you’ve been too busy to update but SERIOUSLY, I have been so busy. Even though I finished & shipped all the banner orders I received before the holiday cut off, people are still ordering up a storm, and for big banners too; most of the year I mostly sell mini banners but for the past week it’s been a full size banner-stravaganza.

I’m also deep, deep into Christmas prep, and between running holiday errands LITERALLY every day, rescuing ornaments from sticky toddler hands and trying to find SOMEWHERE to put all the gifts because there is no way we can keep them under the tree (did I mention STICKY TODDLER HANDS???), and working on handmade gifts I am BURIED UNDER. I’m actually working on a gift right now at my computer as I edit pics & wait for them to upload. Seriously.

In between the craziness there’s been some fun; on Friday my mom came over for a visit on her way south for the winter and that night we had dinner at my sister-in-law’s with her and her kids and my sister and her boyfriend. On Saturday Taylor’s dad came by to visit. Family stuff! So good. And over the course of the weekend we were in full Christmas cookie mode. I don’t have a tried-and-true recipe that I use so we usually just use a mix, or tubes of Pillsbury dough (although I would not recommend their gingerbread dough unless you want to die from frustration as it is basically IMPOSSIBLE to roll out). Over the course of Saturday and Sunday we baked two kinds of gingerbread and also sugar cookies, and then last night Taylor, Sym and I decorated them all. Mostly they are weird, but I’m pretty happy with them.

This week is going to be more of the same that last week was: banner-making, cobbling and catching up on Keeping up with the Kardashians as I craft. It’s a difficult life, you guys.

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My mom says it’s very grown up of me to finally have a real dining room table so kudos to me on becoming an adult at the age of 37 & 3/4. For tips on how to get a super-cool centerpiece like mine check out this diy.
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Gwen got this beautiful dress for her birthday from Taylor’s sister (& family), she wore it for the first time the other day with polka dot jeggings (similar here). FASHION.
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This is my favourite cookie.

December 5th

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Teddy bear headband c/o Tiny Tangerines.

I DID IT YOU GUYS, I DID IT. It was a crazy struggle but I did it. “It” being getting all the banners that were ordered before the December 1st cutoff made & shipped this week, plus a couple that were ordered after the cutoff for good measure.

Originally I thought it would be a breeze to get them all done; I had a semi-easy week ahead and figured if I made a certain number of banners each day I could easily finish them all, but I guess the universe thought it’d be cool to mess with me or something because every single day I had a new problem that made it impossible to get the requisite number of orders completed.

Monday morning was Gwen’s hearing test, and I was sick to my stomach all day and could hardly function.
Tuesday I had an allergic reaction to something, I had to take antihistamines and they knocked me on my ass.
Wednesday I got a horrible cold sore in my nose (why? why do I get them in my nose???) so I had to waste the whole morning going to the doctor to get a prescription for antiviral medication, which makes me feel all weird headed, plus it took so long to actually get the meds that by the time I took the first dose it was 1:30 in the afternoon so I had to stay up until 1:30 in the morning to take the second dose.
Thursday I was super tired from staying up half the night and I had cramps because I got my period. PERFECT. WOW. GREAT WEEK SO FAR.

When I got up on Thursday morning I only had like 1/5th of the work done and I knew if I wanted to ship everything today I would have to POWER THROUGH. I honestly hadn’t made so many banners in one day since that time two years ago when I was 9 months pregnant and Jezebel linked to my shop. It was definitely reminiscent of the first days after I had Gwen, working on banners all day and all night with a little newborn curled up next to me, although instead of a tiny baby I have an enormous toddler who insists on grabbing all my stuff and running away (invoices, scissors, finished banners that she wants to mangle in her sticky hands…).

Anyway, I got all the banners but one finished & packed up last night, and I made that last one this morning so I got them all to the post office in plenty of time. Now I can spend the rest of the day TOTALLY BUGGIN’ about the fact that the dress I ordered yesterday for Taylor’s office holiday party tomorrow night seems to still be in Mississauga EVEN THOUGH I paid for 1-day shipping. WTF, CANADA POST, GET IT TOGETHER.

December 1st

Happy December everyone! Even though we don’t have our tree decorated yet I’ve been getting into full holiday mode: brainstorming gifts I still need to purchase, picking out wrapping paper, planning menus and yesterday I played my Christmas playlist all the way through. That last one was actually Taylor’s fault, I mentioned having a particularly silly song from it stuck oin my head and he mocked me for it so I had to punish him and also reward myself. To help you all get in the Christmas spirit here’s one of my playlist faves that I just added last year:

I love it, it’s just so happy! I wish Danielle Brooks would put out a whole Christmas album. You can download this song free here.

Now that’s you’re sufficiently jolly, here’s another little treat: I’m doing a giveaway this week over on my instagram. The winner gets a handmade felt & rhinestone pickle ornament and a green-to-gold gradient “MERRY PICKLEMAS” mini glitter banner. Just a little silliness to help relieve the stress of knowing Christmas is only three and a half weeks away and there’s still so much to do! Click here to see the rules & enter.
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For anyone interested in custom banners be aware that today is the cutoff for orders. Please visit the shop to get yours. Any orders received after today I’ll try my best to get them shipped in time for the holidays but I can’t guarantee they’ll make it in time, so get your order in asap! Any orders I’ve already received/ones made today will be made and shipped on time; I’m going to try to get them all done this week so wish me luck!

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On Friday night it snowed like ONE INCH but it was perfect tbh, just enough that everyone was jolly about it but not so much it was any sort of hassle. It only stuck to like… plants so all the sidewalks and paths were clear.
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One night I was feeling sad so Taylor put on his one-piece woollen long underwear and buttoned a cushion into so he looked like a tall Danny Devito as The Penguin (there’s a reason I can adult one-pieces “Cobblepots).
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I gave Gwen pompoms to sort while I sorted rhinestones.
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One of these pickles could be yours! (The other two and the ham are spoken for but like… LOOK AT THAT HAM, I even put pineapple rings & cherries on it.)
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Gwen hampered herself.
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