25 June 2014

21 - 25/52

Oh. My. Goodness.  Here I go again ... not posting my "weekly" portraits.  It's easy enough to capture these boys on my camera every week, it's just finding the time to upload them to the computer and then pick only ONE picture to post each week that is difficult(!).  So, I'm sorry for the catching-up, lengthly, picture post!

Judah West: To have that smile meet in me the morning, makes my heart melt.
Hunter Elias: You love to giggle and laugh, and I can't get enough of these special moments with you.


Judah West: Just give him the cart and he'll go!  Having fun at the grocery store.
Hunter Elias: Anything you can get your hands on, it goes in your mouth!  Thankfully, it was just the rubber ducky this time.

Judah West: Today, you learnt that putting an orange in your mouth can make your mama laugh.  So naturally, this went on for a few minutes.
Hunter Elias: It's all business when we get down to stuff like the bath.  Glad you enjoy relaxing in the water (and playing with simple toys like measuring cups!).

Judah West: You're looking so dapper with your new haircut, my two year old.
Hunter Elias: Even though you were not enjoying the zoo, you're handsome face was just too cute to not photograph.

Judah West: Engineering sky-scrapers with your new magnetic blocks brings out a focused side of you.  I can't wait to see all the things you build in the years to come.
Hunter Elias: Rascaling around on your brothers toys ... it's all the rage these days.  You've been exploring and adventuring this week with so much confidence.  You are so brave, my boy.

23 June 2014

project tent trailer - p h a s e 0 1

So, as mentioned before, we got ourselves a tent trailer earlier this month.  As if we don't have enough on the go(!), we decided to change up a few things to make it "ours".  Get our germs in there, as my hilarious neighbor put it.  The trailer isn't too old, so everything was in great condition and didn't really need to be updated.  We just wanted to make some "easy" cosmetic changes (I emphasize "easy" because it's always easier said than done!).  And as per usual, this project took longer than we thought, but we are pretty happy with the results.

p h a s e  0 1  -  f l o o r s  &  c a b i n e t s
b e f o r e.

As you can tell, it's not un-campable by any means ... just a little dated.  We decided we would update the cabinets and floors first.  Originally, I had planned to install the flooring.  Then my AMAZING hubby jumped on project tent trailer and 1) went to pick out & buy the flooring and 2) installed it.  To say I was ecstatic is an understatement.  He did a much better job than what I would have done and got it done super fast.  And....I am in love with the driftwood color he chose!

I thought the cabinets would be easy - sand, prime, paint.  When I got to sanding, I realized that our "oak" cabinets were MDF board with a wallpapery-sticker faux wood finish.  Beautiful.  I was unable to sand, so they did not turn out to be as smooth as I anticipated.  At least the effect of "bright" was reached ... with a bit of a rustic finish.  I already had half a can of linen white paint and chalkboard paint (from painting our house last year), and still have some left.  The basic hardware for the cabinets was bought at Rona & Home Depot.

a f t e r.

For  p h a s e  0 1, there are still a few finishing touches - one knob to get, mini baseboards, etc...little stuff.  My  p h a s e  0 2 will include reupholstering the cushions and re-doing the curtains.  I won't start working on those until we've got a few camping trips under our belt.

So...for the meantime, I'm SO excited with this revamp and a-camping we will go!!

pic pix: tent trailer project - phase 01, June.2014

19 June 2014


We were driving up to one beautiful campsite the other year, and the drive was equally as gorgeous.  Mountains on either side of us, trees, trees, trees everywhere.  The skies were just the right contrast of blue and white.  Let's just say, it was breath-taking!  The road we were driving on had about a 12 foot buffer on each side before the trees were so thick, you could barely see through them.  It was while we were driving on that road that I thought, There were people who forged this road through these trees.  I wonder what they would think of us now ... driving into these deep wood to "rough it" for their "vacation".

It's funny how something so simple - like camping - is now a novelty.  First pioneers to these parts had to literally rough it every single day.  Camping was their norm and not their retreat.  They surely would laugh at me, counting down the days to our next camp trip when they probably yearned for things more elaborate when it came to the thought of relaxation!

We live in an era where basic concepts/tasks are so unconventional that they are considered "fresh" and original.  No longer is an imagination what every kid has ... the few that are left to explore it are almost praised for something that was once how every kid played.  Minimalism is considered a stylish trend.  When in all reality, to pare down and have less stuff is simply smart.  Eating clean, whole foods is not a new, way-out-there-thought, it's natural - how food was eaten in a much more intrinsic time.

Though kids are bombarded by the infiltration of "more, more, more", I believe they still carry some of the keys to simplicity.  Like, how they love people no matter how awkward or unnatural the adult is.  Their acceptance is innocent and not over analyzed.  Or how they can laugh over the simplest of things.  Their not consumed with everyone else's opinion.  Or how, they believe and have such a trust in God and people.  There is such thing as faith like a child.

Basically, simplicity is about getting back to the basics.  Unlearning all the complicated ways and things we've accumulated since we were children.  Knowing and living the "simple is more" mantra.

"It takes a long time to learn how to do something simple." ~ Marty Rubin

So I guess, in pursuit of living this simple life ... I'm going camping!!

pic pix: Yaya & Judah on a simple afternoon walk, May.2014, Fish Creek Park, AB

17 June 2014

camping eats.

We've got a few standby recipes that we always seem to go for when camping.  And then some others that I cannot wait to try.  "Easy" can be delicious too, and that's become my goal: to find yummy, quick meals.  Some ahead of time prep can be helpful too.

There are so many options out there (especially on Pinterest - I found this 7 days of camping) and some great looking books with recipes too.  Here are a few of my simple "top" picks:

a) lumber jack breakfast pack - good use of leftovers.
b) angel food cake french toast - I mean, how can you not want to try this?
c) pre-made fruit & yogurt jars
d) berry camping cake - could be used as a breakfast or a dessert!
e) egg in a basket

a) the perfect camping sandwich - I've made one similar to this recipe.  It is great for the lunch as you can pack it the day you are leaving.
b) salad in a jar - can prep up to 5 days before
c) campfire quesadillas - I want these for lunch today!

a) shish kabobs - I make this almost every time we go camping.  Skewers are too easy: Marinade the meat, freeze it, let it thaw out in the cooler before you cook it up; Cut up fresh veggies and ziploc them a couple days before you head out.  If there are extra veggies, leftovers are perfect for a morning omelette or hash brown mix.
b) camp pizza - Yes!  Bring the dough from home and dress it when you're ready to cook it over the fire.
c) jicama slaw - delicious addition to any supper meal.
d) skillet enchiladas - I think this one will be an instant favorite.

p.s. wouldn't these containers be cute to have for leftovers / picnics?!

pic pix: camping a few weekends ago, May.2014, Mossleigh, AB

09 June 2014

colorboard / no.30

color: royal "electric" blue with browns
word of inspiration: camping bring-a-longs (aka. needs)
source of word: This is one combination of colors that reminds me of camping.  Maybe it's these camping dishes or the fact that coolers and a lot of camping equipment is this blue.  And brown, just goes with the outdoors...naturally.  

/1. gotta have a pair of stylin' kicks  /2. as much as I love bringing the outdoors in, I also love bringing the indoors out! candles are one way.  /3. THIS iphone case  /4. soft soled shoes for my Hunty bear  /5. love this local brand and all of their clothes, and, well, their name is perfect for this post!  /6. nothing like a real mug to drink campfire coffee with  /7. you can have camping accessories  /8. this jacket though /9. some wellies for my Juju bear  /10. a hammock at home & a hammock in the wild  /11. in love with this blanket  /12. I know this bag would be perfect for me camping (with my computer? ha)  /13. a shirt for my man

back to where i left off : camp stuff.

Hi friends!  It's been a long week and half since I was last around these parts.  A chunk of time with good and "boo" things.  Bad news first: we've been sick.  For a 2 year old (Judah), the inability to move because of a high temperature got very confusing (and yes, that it was).  Poor fella.  Thankfully, Hunter didn't get sick and Judah got over it pretty quickly...but unfortunately, I had to catch the mysterious fever-flu-bug too.  Boo.  To get through it was another reminder of how "sweet" the gift of health really is.

Anyways, the exciting news ... we got ourselves a tent trailer!  Only 2 days after this post, we found a great deal and went to pick it up.  And let me say: I. Just. Love. It.  We decided that before we outfit it and go on any trips, we would paint the cupboards and redo the floor.  So this week, any free time has been working on that.  Before the next camping trip, I'd like to redo the pillows and the curtains too.  I'll be posting pictures of before and after shots once "phase 1" of our tent trailer reno is completed.
S o  e x c i t e d ! ! !

And as I previously mentioned, I'll be dedicating some posts to camp stuff coming up.  Here's some camp links to get you feeling the "I love camping" vibes too!

. these pins - live. love. camp.

. I kind of love collapsible things.  They are so easy to pack (kind of like tent trailers I guess!).  Like this buckettea kettle, camp stool, strainer/bowl, stow-away cupboards, etc.

. i always love these kinds of pictures. source

. a post I did about a hot tub you could bring camping.  I'd still like one...even for our backyard!

. these two notecards for father's day 1 | 2

. i love camping here.

. and can't wait to one day camp here.

pic pix: a picture of a picture - early explorers to Banff, Alberta, May.2014, taken in Canmore, Alberta


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