proactive about forming traditions, or not; we all have them.  i’m the type of person who despises routine, but cherishes the traditions that our little family has organically formed. 

on christmas eve, we squish into the living room, and have a sleepover. there is always one gift opened, and that gift in itself is a tradition: footy pyjamas, and a toy made by me.  we sleep late the next morning, and slowly get through breakfast, and reading the christmas story from the bible. 

my kids are growing up, and so am i.  they no longer “play” with the toys that i make them, and i no longer have the time to make weekly toys.  so this year, i really struggled with what to make them for their christmas eve gifts.  i didn’t want to break with tradition, but i also didn’t want to waste time and resources. 

i brainstormed and consulted with friends and family, and came up with handmade ornaments.  and now i kind of wish that i’d had the idea many years ago.  the ornaments summarize the year that is coming to a close.  in doing this, the kids can have a chronological record of their childhoods. practically, they can start a collection for their own trees in their own homes- days which are too rapidly approaching.

elliot has been into pokemon for years, but this year he was pretty focused on the release of a new game, and counted down the days for at least ⅓ of the year.  given his history with pokemon (it was really the first “thing” he was into), i thought it fitting that his first ornament be a pokeball.

anne’s been in ballet for almost 4 years now, but this year she made the decision to focus on it more seriously.  she doubled-up her lessons, and began daily practice at home. she’s even been teaching me!

tomorrow night we’ll continue our tradition of pyjamas, handmade “toy”, and a sleepover.  i’m looking forward to seeing the reactions of my not so midgety-midgets when they see the new twist on an old tradition.

merry christmas to you all! thanks for reading!

December 23, 2016 at 23:14 Leave a comment

prepping for the new year, part 3

happy new year!  i’m finally ready to share with you the apps & tools that help me to invest in my physical health.  stick around, non-iFriends! there’s stuff for you here too :)

i really need to start out by acknowledging the fact that i am so incredibly flawed and aware of it — this series on new year’s resolutions is not coming from a place of “having achieved”, but from a place of recognizing that most of us are in the same situation of just wanting to do better.  if i weren’t using diet to control personal pain levels, i’d still be the lady who eats 3 buttertarts for breakfast!

i’d also like to address the “love yourself” body image movement that’s sweeping the internet.  i completely agree with being satisfied with the body that you have been given. i completely DON’T agree that “loving yourself” means neglecting your health.  do you see the difference?  loving something means caring for it, not giving it whatever it wants.  you do what is best for those that you love, and if you “love yourself”, then you should do what is best for yourself. you get one body for your whole complete entire life!

part 1: spiritual health
part 2: mental health

drink lots.

there are many options on the app store for water-drinking reminders, but they’re all basically timers.  your phone comes with a timer (even if you don’t have a smart phone, i’m sure you have a timer!)  get yourself a great water bottle, and set your timer for one hour.  when the reminder sounds, drink your water, refill your bottle, and restart the timer.  if the taste of water is your hang up, then infuse your water with fruit, or do what i like to do when i need variety:  throw in a bag of fruit tea.   also, take your water with you wherever you go. these are my current favourite water bottles because they fit in a purse, are made of glass, and are so wonderfully colourful. (local tip: they’re $5 cheaper at Sail)


sleep lots.

imagei might actually consider myself gifted in this area of life.  for all of my preamble up top about “not having yet achieved”–  in this regard, i am boss.  where i fail in the sleep category, is in the waking up part.  when i’m trying to be responsible, i use the basalt wakeup alarm clock.  i may be the only person i know who just can’t get up in the morning, but this alarm clock alerts when i’m in a lighter sleep cycle.  it’s a bit helpful, or maybe it’s all in my head. i’ve heard tales of people who can wake up to an average alarm clock, but i’m not convinced that those people actually exist.

anyway, sleep more.  my trick:  get way super-comfortable in bed.  make your limbs relax, slow your breathing, and count each breath backwards from 100. do not give up! when you get all the way back to zero, start again. i tell myself that i won’t give up until i’ve tried it for 400 seconds, which is not too much time to invest in trying to fall asleep.  i’ve only made it to zero twice in my life, and never ever through the second hundred. i use this trick to fall asleep at night, to force myself to nap, or to stay sleeping in when i’m really not wanting to get up yet in the morning.  i’m pretty curious for someone else to try it and let me know if it works for them, or if i just excel at sleep.

work out daily.

actually every day! we had years of gym memberships before letting it go over the summer, and not renewing again this fall.  i thought that i wouldn’t be able to handle life without all of those machines, but i’m actually really loving home workouts!

Screen Shot 2015-12-29 at 23.44.52pinterest is making a double-appearance in this series, but google or any other search engine works well also.  just search for equipment-free 20 minute workouts, and you’ll find tons!

the big hurdle with working out daily is not gym memberships, equipment, fancy fitbit gadgets, or lack of information online.  the biggest problem to overcome to meet your goal of working out, is believing the lie that you don’t have time.  how is it that wasting 20 minutes on facebook is so effortless, but taking 20 whole minutes to exercise is a gigantic effort?

the reason that i say “every day”, is because skipping a day is enough to break a habit.  it doesn’t have to be a HIIT workout each day, but you could go for a walk with your husband or dog if you want a break or need variety.

i know i’m not the only girl who has a pinterest board full of workouts that never get done.  here is the app that i use to make sure that they get done:

imagepaper 53 is a drawing/journal app.  i use it to upload my pinterest saves, and make a journal of workouts.  i have one journal for pieces in progress workouts (which i love), and an actual  “fitness journal” with before pics, motivational pins, logs of different workouts.  why do i bother with putting the workouts into another app? because paper 53 allows me to organize the workouts and to check things off as i complete them. for example:



i love that i can quickly check items off as i accomplish them, then erase it all again for the next workout.  i   can also add notes to existing workouts, as seen above with “add chin ups & jumping jacks”.  also, please note how EASY the last example is!  NINE full minutes of rest incorporated in this level one 30 minute workout.  you can do it! (find this workout and the next two levels here).

if you cringe at the idea of doing before pictures, consider doing before measurements.  i’ll say over and over that being healthy isn’t about how you look, but that’s not what the pics or measurements are for.  nobody likes to work without seeing results. having measurements or pics allows you to see that your daily efforts are making a difference.  also, regarding taking before pics: obviously you don’t want anyone to see them!  you pass your phone to your uncle to show him pictures of your kids, and he scrolls a little too far…. awkward. *chirp* *chirp*.  paper 53 lets you load your pictures into your journal, and then you can delete them off of your phone.  want to see my before pictures?


if i want to see them, i open my journal, open the page, and erase the doodling covering the pic.  no embarrassing accidentally showing anyone my befores.

done! i hope that the information on these pages is helpful to you! again, let me know if there are any great apps that you use to keep you accountable to your health- i’d love to hear about them.

wishing all of you a 2016 that you’re proud to have used wisely! thanks for reading!

January 1, 2016 at 15:18 2 comments

prepping for the new year, part 2

today i’d like to focus on mental health, because i really firmly believe that brains need to be worked out if you want to depend on them for any length of time. i plan to use my brain for many years to come, so here are some of my favourite ways to pursue that goal.

Continue Reading December 30, 2015 at 08:32 2 comments

prepping for the new year, iStyle

whatever your new year’s resolutions are, i can guarantee that you’ve resolved to make yourself better. i’m a big fan of making my tools work for me, so be prepared to combine the efficiency of apple stuff with your new year’s resolutions.

Continue Reading December 29, 2015 at 23:22 2 comments

don’t believe my kids

just putting down a quick preventative blog post here about how i’m NOT pregnant.  i haven’t gained weight, haven’t been vomiting in the mornings, haven’t had the irresistable urge to clean anything [ever].  the SOLE reason that my kids are insisting that i’m pregnant:

“mommy, who is Addprofile?”  


they randomly hug me, then kiss my belly and talk to “Addprofile”.  they tell me about the plans that have for him/her, and ask me when little Add will be born. 

i know they’re just being silly, and that they’ve lobbed onto what they think is the best joke of the century.  if you see my kids talking to my abdomen or overhear them dreaming about their new brother or sister, you have to know: it’s a netflix baby.  do not react. 

rumour=dispelled. thanks!

December 12, 2015 at 15:16 Leave a comment

November 23, 2015 at 05:57PM

it snowed today, so my kids conspired to decorate for christmas.

November 23, 2015 at 17:57 Leave a comment

November 22, 2015 at 11:19PM

wow, I’ve ripped this out so many times!! diagonal basketweave is making me crazy! #knittingproblems

November 22, 2015 at 23:19 Leave a comment

Older Posts Newer Posts

my life in pics

beautiful day for playing with guns 🔫 i know that i'm not easy to love: i can't be baked for, cooked for, or touched. i'm independent to a fault, and yet, you all keep finding ways to cover me with love and encouragement. big public thank you to my family and friends for persistently showering me with blessings, encouraging texts, and for continually bringing my family to God in prayer. we took family night to derek tonight, and filled that room with laughter!