Three Months: Oh Deer!

Well Mr. Benji Bear, we made it to three months! There were lots of changes and developments - some more welcome than others - but overall I'm loving this stage!

Ben has been so interactive this month. Each morning and after most naps I am greeted with the biggest smiles and giggles (and we all know it's not gas even though there's no shortage of that stuff either). But it doesn't stop at just smiles - now he chatters and sings with us too. We like to make different facial expressions or sounds and play copy-cat. Grandma and Grandpa especially love getting these videos. This month Ben also realized his fist was attached to his arm and he could put it in his mouth! It's better than any toy or pacifier, that's for sure. All of his shirts are now wet at the cuff but he doesn't seem to mind. But if he is annoyed or bored with something he sure doesn't hesitate to let us know. This kid is stubborn (just like his parents?) and isn't afraid of speaking up when he wants something.

We also made some sleep milestones this month. The night of March 7th he slept and astounding ten hours straight! I couldn't believe it. Normally we're averaging six hours sleep + feed + two more hours sleep a night. I'm not sure what he's dreaming about but laughs and scowls always seem to come from his bassinet. Ben also hit the 'I refuse to nap during the day phase' which was a lot less fun. Inconsolable fussing for 12 hours straight one day and 10 hours the next. We tried everything we could possibly think of but I'm going to attribute it to just being over-tired and crabby. Thankfully he seems to be back on schedule today.

Unlike last month when we had a surplus of visitors this month has been relatively quiet. We still go to Mommy & Me group sessions and chat with Pedro, Harrison and Elea but is is usually just the two (or three) of us hanging out. We've gone swimming in the pool a couple of times - something Ben's enjoyed since he's first dip at 5 weeks. We also took advantage of some crazy warm spring weather and took Ben to the beach. He slept in the stroller while mom took photos of clouds and kites. It was a treat just to get out.

Who's to say what will happen with spring around the corner?


Can I get a Heat Wave?

We've been enjoying some insane weather here lately - completely unprecedented for this time of year. While my parents and friends back west deal with yet another round of shovelling sidewalks and treacherous road conditions from the latest blizzard, we are basking in the heat! 

Windows are open, table fan is on, lemonade is flowing freely and I won't even complain about the sweat collecting on my brow.

Bring on Summer!


Prairie Girl Cupcakes

Last weekend, after a trip to the Farmer's Market, we popped in at a little shop called "Prairie Girl Bakery". Being a prairie girl myself, I though we should take a look. Really though, who walks into a cupcake store just to look? We decided on 1/2 dozen mini cupcakes to sample, split them each in half, and rated them on a somewhat arbitrary five point scale.

(1) Butterscotch Caramel (3/5) - This was their 'feature of the day' cupcake. The texture was pretty good but the icing was too sweet. Not too memorable.

(2) Dark Cocoa Strawberry (3/5). The chocolate was nice and rich but the strawberry was way too artificial. I prefer strawberries to taste like strawberries, not sugary candy berries.

(3) Vanilla Lemon (2/5) Plain and simple, this cupcake was old! It tasted stale from the first bite and neither Danny nor I had much incentive to even finish our little portion. Too bad - this is probably quite a refreshing treat -- when it is fresh!

(4) Dark Cocoa Peppermint (3/5) The peppermint was a nice cool contrast to the dark chocolate but didn't stand out as 'the best I'd ever have'.

(5) Banana Peanutbutter (4/5) I had my hopes up for this cupcake and it was overall my favourite. The banana was moist and the peanut butter icing had the right combination of sweet and salty.

(6) Red Velvet Cream Cheese (3/5) Danny thought this one was alright but I tasted something spicy in the cake (not in a good way) and couldn't get over it.

I had high hopes that we had found our little neighbourhood cupcake boutique, but overall we were a bit disappointed. In all fairness, we were totally comparing them to our absolute favourite cupcake shop back home, Crave, but I can't help but feel that Prairie Girl came up a bit short. Were they better than grocery store cupcakes? Of course. Were we harsh judges? Perhaps. Will we go back? Not likely. Oh well - at least we tried and had fun playing food critics!

* Not being endorsed in any way whatsoever to do a review of this bakery. Just something we chose to do for fun. Feel free to go try them out for yourself. We're just one opinion of many.


The Neighbourhood Farmer's Market

A few days ago, Danny and I watched the documentary Food Inc. and it got us thinking a bit about what we are putting in our bodies and where that food was coming from. Although we're not planning to make any radical lifestyle changes, we did decide to try out our local farmer's market this weekend.

It was a chilly but sunny morning so we bundled up tight and walked to the market. It was bustling with all sorts of people, vendors and produce to be sold. We did a quick walk around to scope out our options and purchased a few items along the way.

Goodies from our adventure included: Organic beef and chicken patties, smoked gouda, garlic pork sausages, sirloin steak, two types of extra lean ground beef, carrots, beets, mangoes, cabbage rolls, pure apple cider, and a bushel of pussy willows. We also picked up half a dozen mini cupcakes near by (more on that later).

Ben slept through most of our trip but was more than happy to inspect the goods once we got home.

Why are you standing on a chair, Mom?

It was a great way to spend a Saturday morning and I'm actually excited to do some cooking (a rare occurrence for me). I think we're going to make the Farmer's Market a regular stop in our weekend routine. I cannot wait to see what the spring and summer months bring.



A Trip to Niagara Falls

Do you ever feel like you're so busy doing things but don't feel like you're actually accomplishing anything substantial? That's how I've been feeling lately. My days are spent working frantically in front of the computer organizing and coordinating and researching for events in our future and yet I feel like I have little to show for it. The days are starting to blend together and I'm like, whoa, it's March already?

But we did do some fun trips recently and I have photos to prove it. As mentioned earlier, Danny's family came to visit us Ben in February for ten days. We spent most of the time in Toronto but did make a trip out to Niagara falls to tip toe on some very slippery pavement and shield our faces from the sharp ice crystals showering down when the wind picked up. And it was fun!

Tim Hortons - an absolute necessity for this chilly day! 
Three generations in front of the falls.

My little trooper... didn't complain one bit!

Hanging out with Uncle and Aunty.

I'd been to the falls once before with Danny and his family had been there a few times too. However, none of us had seen Niagara at night before. We strolled up the craziness that is Clifton Street where we indulged in some wood fired pizza and then walked back to our car while admiring the lit up falls through our tightly pulled hoods.

We got absolutely soaked on our walk back. Luckily I packed an extra pair of pants for the drive home. Nothing like sitting in wet denim - yuck! 

I'm not sure when we'll travel to Niagara again but I'll always look back on it with fond memories.