Since I stated working again our social life has taken a bit of a nose dive. Although the job is officially a part-time position, there have been weeks when I have worked more hours that J at his full-time job. So obviously I do not have the time I once did to clean, cook and arrange for friends to come over.
This weekend though J surprised me. I finished work at four in the afternoon and he had cleaned the house, made dinner and invited four friends over. It was so nice to come in and sit down with a glass of wine and relax. It was probably the nicest thing he has done for me in a while!
Things still are busy though and weekday nights hardly have a moment of free time. Last night I grabbed the kids from their dayhome and ran to a Walmart to buy Valentines (due Wednesday), supplies for a 100 day project and get kid passport pictures taken. I hardly had time to think about dinner, but I knew there were chicken breasts thawing in the fridge. This is probably my favourite chicken breast recipe, ever, and super simple to make. Unfortunately we were out of proscuitto. So I came up with something that tasted pretty darn good and was a hit!
4 chicken breasts
1 bunch of thyme
1 cup of Italian seasoned bread crumbs
1/2 cup shredded parmesan
salt and pepper to taste
Lay a chicken breast flat in the middle a sheet of large saran wrap, making sure there is lots of space on all sides. Cut another piece of saran wrap the same size and lay flatly over top, sealing the chicken in place. Use an empty jar to pound the chicken so that it has an even width across, helping it cook evenly. Remove the saran wrap and season with salt and pepper. Mix egg into bowl. Dip the chicken breast into the egg wash, making sure it is fully coated. Pour the bread crumbs onto a plate and completely cover the chicken breast in crumbs.
In a frying pan, heat some olive oil to fry up your chicken breasts. You can cut into the middle of the meat to make sure it is fully cooked. Use a microplane or the smallest holes on a shredder to zest your lemon. Spread the lemon zest, thyme (fresh leaves taken from the stalks, or dried) and parmesan cheese over your fillets. Broil until golden. Cut into chicken strips and serve!
All in all this took about 15 minutes to make and was devoured with some steamed veggies and fresh grapes in about the same.
As luck would have it we had a PD day earlier this week and we weren’t going to let it pass us by. It is not very often that me and the boys get a day to hang out together during the week.
Since grade one has started the questions coming from the back seat of the car have gotten slightly more complicated. You can tell classroom lessons are diving into more subjects and that little minds are continuously working on solving things that don’t add up for them quite yet.
When my five year old said he would like to see what was inside of his body an idea sprang to mind. Our local science museum was hosting a body worlds exhibit. I am pretty sure that I vowed as an adult would never attend an exhibition like that due to my aversion to sharing space with dead people. In fact, I am also pretty sure I adverted my eyes during a recent screening of Casino Royale where one scene is shot in a Body World exhibit. Being a parent will stretch you in ways you would have never imagined and I can successfully say I took my sons to go see what was inside their bodies!
We got All Access passes and this allowed us to visit the museum, see a show in the dome and view the body world exhibit and it was well worth it. We have held a family membership before, a very generous Christmas gift from the grandparents, but it had since expired. The Creative Kids Museum is always a favourite and my kids could spend hours there, playing with things like gears, magnets and gravity. This time it was the dome show that completely captivated them! We saw the show on planets and it was really well executed. Also, I now have some tools to talk about bones, muscles and the lymphatic system.
Well it has been a while since I’ve posted on this dear old blog. Despite being a great source of comfort and connection for my time living abroad it has gone through severe periods of dormancy. Alas no more, I challenge myself. Truth be told I sometimes don’t know why. There are so many great blogs out there by so many more interesting people right here in my own city. I think I crave that comfort and connection that I got out of writing it (and posting the occasional picture) in the past.
So here I am with a bit of free time on my hands, my kids (plural) now giants since the last time there was a mention on the blog, are at school and a dayhome as I am now a working mother. I had not worked for 6 years and this summer I was hired at an airline to work in their operations centre. My goal is to use some of the free time I have now document this phase of our life. One of the perks of working for an airline is the travel thing, and that thing has always been a big thing for me.
Current open tabs: airbnb listings for tokyo, fujifilm x series cameras, 36 hours in Tokyo
Yup, we are thinking about visiting the capital of Japan for our first trip! From Calgary it is a direct flight and as long as the loads are good, it should be easy to travel standby. Stay tuned for more info.
So for a year now J and I have owned our own home! After all the rentals we have lived in (and loved) around the world, it is nice to be able to walk into a room and say, “I don’t like this paint colour/knob/light fixture. I’m going to change it.” Sometimes this is more than necessary, as in the case of what used to be known as the dreaded Green Room. It made guests gasp! It was one of the first changes we made by ourselves. It went from this:
J will admit that he has become quite complacent with our home. We are lucky, apart from the roof there aren’t many repairs that we have had to do. So in fact, the painting above was done 10% by me. I wish to make our house not only liveable, but really comfortable to be in.
Last night J was able to help me tackle some things on my list and so far I love the way these very small improvements make me feel.
First, we hung the pot rack that we bought months ago.
Doesn’t it look great? It is actually a dream come true as I have wanted one in my kitchen for as long as I can remember. When we finally got our house we wandered through Ikea looking for one only to find out they had discontinued all their models! Luckily I found one on Kijiji.
Then we hung the shelving unit I found yesterday. When I bought it I didn’t even know where it would go or if I should spray paint it. I just loved the style. I wasn’t sure J would, but he did and was even the one to suggest where it would live in our home. It now hangs over our dining table, holding essentials like napkins and the salt and pepper shakers.
The next thing we tackled was a small reading corner for our son’s room. His books have always been scattered all over the house and this gives them a neat place where he can reach them and store them himself. I know I got the idea for using rain gutter shelving from some blog for kids books, unfortunately I don’t remember which one. Anyway, we love it!
Yes, you read right, I did say son and that is purple paint you are looking at. We still have a lot of stuff to do!
I am always on the lookout for hand-knit sweaters, especially in toddler size. I have a weakness for chairs and dream about refinishing them in cool funky ways, but alas, we have enough already. I can usually find a picture frame or two. I am currently on the hunt for a large sized mirror for our dresser in our bedroom.
Today I found a cool Asian inspired wicker shelf (which I think we might try and wall mount), some drawer knobs, a green glass vase and a wooden cannister set. These treasures set me back a whooping 13$.
So Instagram finally became available to Android users and boy am I ever thrilled! I wish my phone’s camera could take better pictures, but I am really happy with the quality of editing, the community and the ease of use.
Memories are fickle things. Sometimes it seems you can only remember the bad and not the good, and at other times the most unimportant details, rather than the big things in life.
Being a mother and watching a little boy grow teaches me this lesson everyday. Our son at two has changed so much since he was born. Babies grow from being ever so dependant to being so staunchly independent that it is quite surprising and downright shocking. I guess that’s life though. I won’t be changing his bum and dressing him forever. He will eventually walk out of our house by himself and he is already on that path, although for now he needs help stepping off the front step.
Some of my favourite moments of the day with him right now are helping him fall asleep for his nap. While it took a while, he now accepts that he is tired and falls asleep without fighting and crying. He is actually very sweet. His already soft voice gets a bit softer. “Bah, bah bah,” is my cue to sing Bah Bah Black Sheep, sometimes this is necessary, other times no. We cuddle his two stuffies, Humphrey and Humberto (a camel and frog, respectively) and as I stroke his baby soft hair his eyes roll back and his eyelids flutter, finally settling together. Peace.
Other moments you wish you could forget forever, like when your son become “The baby that potentially swallowed glass ” and you are waiting for x-rays to be read in the Children’s hospital ER. This was us for three hours last night. Honestly we knew that since he was acting normal after being caught drinking out of a broken drinking glass (and not finding all the pieces!) he was probably fine, but we still wanted to make sure there was no chance of internal bleeding so we took him in to be seen. Luckily nothing showed up and we were sent home, but there were moments of panic.
I want to appreciate all the moments I have with the people I love and I think writing them down is the only way my memories with stay with me. Luckily I can still remember my password to log in to WordPress it has been so long.