Our First #SnowDay of the #School Year

Today, we woke up to a beautiful winter wonderland…and our first snow day of the school year!

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We spent some time with the neighbours in our little culdesac, shoveling out everyone’s sidewalks and driveways, and playing with some of their dogs.

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The kids were both exhausted and happy.

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When we came back inside, I was getting hot chocolate and marshmallows in the kitchen and realized that somehow snow had come in from under the back door overnight. I moved the bookshelf and found a bunch of snow.

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I cleaned it up and, while the bookshelf was moved and half of the kitchen floor was now clean and dry, I figured I would take advantage of it and start putting the laminate flooring I had bought last week, on at least that portion of the kitchen floor. For the last two years since we moved into our home, we just had the underflooring that had been hiding underneath the horrible flooring we had to pull out before redoing the kitchen.

Soon, my daughter got curious about what I was doing in the kitchen and the next thing I knew, she was helping!

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Now we have a beautiful kitchen floor, that we laid ourselves…

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…and my daughter has even asked if something new can be added to her chore chart: mopping the kitchen floor!

#WordlessWednesday – Such A #Blogger

My man and I went for a walk in the snow a while ago, giving him the opportunity to take pictures just “because”…he doesn’t get to do that often as he’s a professional photographer. He “caught” me …

Such a blogger

Such a Canadian blogger too…winterwear, surrounded by snow, and probably tweeting or Facebook’ing about our walk. 😉

#AdventCalendar Days 9 – 16

If you follow me on Facebook or Twitter, you’ll know that I created a new activities-based Advent Calendar this year. No more cheap (and yucky!) chocolate! Here are the activities we did for December 9 through 16:

Dec 9 Make Christmas cookies – We made some Christmas-shaped sugar cookies. My daughter helped me make the cookies, and they both helped decorate them.

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Dec 10 Christmas party near the Grandparents – Every year, my dad’s Rotary Club has a Christmas party for the kids and grandkids of the Rotarians, but the real focus is the kids who attend/use services at a local organization who works with kids with special needs. When we lived at the family farm, my son was part of their IBI program. I was so proud of my kids…they had to wait for almost an hour for their turn with Santa, and they did awesome!

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Dec 11 Write letters to Santa – My daughter gets very frustrated with written expression so, instead of doing a “traditional” letter to Santa, we got together with my man’s son and the daughter of a friend of his. They cut out items from a toy catalogue, and created their letters for Santa, with one rule, they needed to include something in their lists for someone else. It looked like a disaster zone for a while…

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Dec 12 & 13 Turn the fridge into a snowman – I added this to the list twice because we just plain didn’t get around to doing it…two days in a row! Maybe it will make another appearance. Not sure yet.

Dec 14 Playdate – My daughter had a playdate with a girlfriend. Nothing necessarily Christmas-y but she was so excited (and it gave me some time to study for my exam which was on Monday). They got to play outside a lot because we had a huge dump of snow. They had a great time, including using one neighbour’s driveway entrance as a slide. 😉

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Dec 15 Autism Ontario Christmas party – Our local chapter of Autism Ontario had their annual Christmas party this afternoon. It was chaotic and wonderful all at once. Kids could eat and see Santa in one room; crafts upstairs in another room. Santa was fantastic! He was so patient, giving every child the time and space each needed, and every child went home with a gift.

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Dec 16 Play in the snow – I had my final exam in the evening so honestly, I was too focused on studying to really organize anything, so the activity in the Advent Calendar for today was to play in the snow when they came home from school. Happy kids!

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Humbled During a Snow Storm

Last Friday was the first day this winter that the school buses were cancelled because of the snow. When I was growing up, my dad taught me how to drive on days when the buses were cancelled but schools were open, so I took the kids to school and IBI therapy. The weather cleared up and, by mid-morning the main roads were quite clear. 

I needed to pick up snowpants for my daughter as she’s outgrown hers so I went to the Salvation Army (call me crazy, but I refuse to pay full price for something she’s going to outgrow in a month!).  I looked around for the snowsuits, found the rack and another woman was there, pulling snowpants from the rack. I joked with her that “great minds think alike”. She asked what size I was looking for. I told her my kids’ sizes, and she started looking through her cart (where she had put many snowpants) and found one that was my son’s size, and gave me that.

I must have had a look on my face as I was surprised at the number of snowpants in her cart.  She laughed and said “I was talking with the school secretary this morning at my kids’ school.  She told me that she felt bad for some of the students because so many of the families couldn’t afford full snowsuits for their children so many of the kids would be cold today.  So I thought I would pick up some snowpants to take to the school before recess.”

I was so humbled by this small encounter with this woman. What a wonderful thing for her to do, to “pay it forward”. How will you “pay it forward” today?

 

Fill in the Blank Friday – 12/02

1.  The holiday season is all about family, friends, food, food and more food! Baked goods galore…yummy!

2.  Snow makes me happy when I’m inside, warm, and watching the gorgeous snowflakes gently falling down, blanketing everything and looking serene…then I go outside and curse it.

3.  The best comfort food to eat when it’s cold out is homemade soup and garlic bread, or a great family recipe called Elsie’s Casserole – the ingredients are in pounds…3lbs of beef, 1lbs of sausage, etc.  Not loved by vegetarians though.

4.  Winter is the best time for playing outside with my kids: snowball fights, building snowmen, snow angels, etc.

5.  I can hardly wait for my next “Stitch & B*tch” get together…a bunch of ladies get together to knit/crochet and chat the night away.  Some stitch, some b*tch, some do both.  Good times!

6.  When it comes to holiday gifts I prefer to give them to others. I pay attention all year, listening for those one-off comments people make, and then I find that item. On very rare occasions, I haven’t been able to find the item in time for Christmas, but I still let the person know what they will be getting so they have something to unwrap on Christmas day.

7.  If I were to rate my excitement about the holiday season on a scale from 1-10, I would say I am at about an 8. I honestly haven’t really gotten into the Christmas spirit yet…there’s no snow on the ground yet.  We are going to the Santa Claus parade on Saturday and a Christmas party on Sunday so hopefully that will bring my Christmas excitement closer to the surface.