memorable snaps of 2015

As a final post for 2015, I wanted to share some of our memorable highlights of this past year.  This was so difficult to do as there were many shots of special moments to choose from but I simply can’t share them all.  Enjoy this peek into our past year.  The quality of some photos aren’t fantastic, but that’s ok – it’s the moments that matter!

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their love for animals – can you spot the real bunny?

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“thanks” – Thanksgiving Day walk

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that time this handsome man took me out for lunch

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eager faces ready to learn

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when mama’s gone, papa plans fun lunches

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when we couldn’t care less about Niagara falls, we danced

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this makes me smile, my handsome boy

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best friends, ever

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papa’s birthday

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meeting their Royal Highnesses, the Dutch king and queen

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taking in the great views at the beach

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the usual highlight of our cottage stay – watching papa fish

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Noah and his buddies

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school is out

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sweet snuggles

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always side by side

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camping table setting

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our speckled, creative Bella

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sis and bro

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playing in the leaves

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time for a selfie

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not everyone is blessed with an oma as special as ours

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our little ladies

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Christmas Eve,  2015

… and just like that, the year is over.  So quickly.  A time to look back and be thankful for so much!

We are looking forward to ringing in the new year with some of my siblings and their families.

Thank you for visiting my little place on the internet this year!

xoxo

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snaps of the week | #24

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Glancing back:

  • the start of the holidays changed unexpectedly with Ava coming down with pneumonia but a little doctor’s help, meds and lots of rest, we are thankful that she’s doing so much better
  • we baked “pepernoten” – tiny, spiced cookies which the Dutch traditionally eat this time of year
  • we attended a lovely Christmas Eve service at the Salvation Army church in our town – a beautiful, solemn service, telling the story of the birth of Jesus in story and song – following the service, we emptied our stockings, along with hot chocolate and lots of goodies
  • Christmas Day – church, family, food, laughter, more family, hugs, holding babies, wine, more snacks, more family, listening to stories about days gone by – it was good

Looking ahead:

  • we are staying away from Boxing day craziness today – a lazy morning which might include some cleaning and laundry, the kids have another Christmas program, during which they will be handing out gift baskets to seniors
  • Johannes took the days between Christmas and New Year off – it’s great to have him home ❤️
  • next week we are planning to do some fun activities with the kids, their friends and cousins – sleepovers, swimming, bowling, etc.
  • we are planning on making fresh”oliebollen” (another Dutch tradition) on New Year’s Eve and inviting friends and family over to come and eat them with us – so come one, come all!!!

Wishing you a wonderful, final week of 2015!

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a day spent at the Toronto Christmas Market

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Hello to you!

I thought to share a few glimpses of our day at the Toronto Christmas Market last weekend.  What a festive, cozy place to be at this time of year!  We bundled up since it was a chilly day with a few snowflakes falling around us.  It was perfect.

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Cozy, quaint streets with great, little shops.

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oh, the food…

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Our friends, enjoying the children’s choir sing carols.

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Mulled wine.

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The kind lady that served us mulled wine surprised us with these deep fried, cinnamon sticks.

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I love him.

If you’re in the area around Christmas next year, I highly recommend you take a stroll through the market.  I would love to take the kids next year, there’s so much to see and do for all ages.

It’s lovely and for us a new tradition has begun!

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our 12th wedding anniversary | love


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12 years.

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I was nervous and excited when I woke up on that cold, happy December morning.  Being young and naive, we didn’t ponder too much about the realities of married life to come and looking back, I don’t think we had to. Over the years, life’s experiences made us grow closer and stronger.  By no means is our marriage perfect and yet it is.

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Not to sound all sappy and all, I’ll just say he’s pretty awesome.  He really is my other half, he makes me smile and he’s a loving father.

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It all started with puppy love…

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We’ve been given 4 perfect, little beings.

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We don’t know where God will lead us in life, but its ok, He has placed you beside me and I thank Him for it.

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Johannes, I love you.

snaps of the week | #23

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Looking back:

  • the kids made delicious chocolate-dipped treats for their teachers
  • it was so sweet to watch our shy and timid boy sing “glo-ho-ho-ho-ho-ho-ria” loud and clear at the school Christmas program –  his face was red as a tomato and his deep voice overpowered those of his classmates -proud of him!
  • for the first time in our 12 years of marriage, I made shepherd’s pie – Johannes was never a fan but he’s changed his mind – it was actually quite delicious
  • I’m having a hard time getting Zara to eat healthy these days – I know I give in too easily too often when she requests unhealthy snacks and an apple often doesn’t cut it for – I do make fruit smoothies for her, adding avocado, spinach, yoghurt and such and I’m glad she enjoys those but dinner time is a daily struggle – something to work on as a New Years resolution perhaps?

Looking ahead:

  • we are looking forward to sleeping in, yummy breakfasts and just plain, lazy days in the coming weeks
  • Johannes and I are enjoying a day out today with friends, partially to celebrate our anniversary and just to have a good time with great peoples
  • we have some family get-togethers next week as we celebrate Christmas
  • I really need to get some baking done – do you have any favourite Christmas recipes?

I hope you’re all enjoying the festive season!

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upcycled sweater stockings | diy

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I just wanted to share a quick, little project that we worked on earlier this week!  Each year we do a small gift exchange with our little family on Christmas Eve but the stiff, red, see-through, felt stockings from the dollar store last year just didn’t cut it. So, we cut some of our own.  Rummaging through our closets, we found some used, worn, itchy, stretched-out sweaters that we haven’t worn in a long time.

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Using a cardboard outline, we cut a stocking out of each sweater and sewed the pieces together.  Some decorative buttons, and voila!

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While we try focus on the real meaning of Christmas during the holiday season, seeing the littles empty their socks with delight, while enjoying hot chocolate and loads of yummy food, is a memorable tradition we enjoy on the eve before Christmas.

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There they are.  They’ll be sneakily filled with thoughtfully crafted gifts and sweet little presents.

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