Thursday, April 21, 2011

Blogging made us friends...Life made us Sisters

So, as many of you know, we just celebrated our son's 2 year old birthday....and being the over-achiever that I am, with a heart to be the best mom I can be and to just enjoy all the "mommy" pleasures I can -- I decided to enter the world of fondant. Yes, I was going to make my first "don't-I-look-like-a-professionally-done" cake. (End note: I don't know if my cake looks all that professional, but it's a definite first step in the right direction. My sugar balloon won't be burst!).

Looking around on the internet, I came across an amazing (AMAZING, I say!) blog, The Polhamus Family. Not only did I find the most easiest instructions on how to make marshmallow fondant, but there are amazing pictures of some of the most gorgeous children I have ever seen. And it's not because of the photography (though there is a definite talent there!), these kids are downright, beautiful.

Seriously, can you stand it?!

So, completely distracted from my whole marshmallow fondant mission, I spent about an hour, looking at Jac's blog. It's a great family - her and her husband have 7 children (a set of girl triplets in there)

she homeschools, has the love of Jesus in her heart and she makes cakes that looks like this

After spending an hour on her site, I was completely inspired -- no, not just to make the marshmallow fondant (oh yeah, that's right!), but in so many ways! I realized the internet is an amazing thing, because somehow we come across people that we seem to have so much in common with, that it's absolutely ridiculous. (Besides the fact that my husband and I don't have twins....seems like everything else is the same. Tho' we (husband and I) are completely open to it....doesn't that count?! :) And so I was inspired to come up with "Blog Sisters" -- where I would consistently feature a blog where I feel the author is "virtually" my sister. And what better blog to start off with, then that of The Polhamus Family.

Here's the Blog Sisters button I created....

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

It's time for a VeggieTales Bday Party!

My son Eliel, was turning 2 on Saturday and for the last month, I had been planning the most amazing birthday party, complete with a VeggieTales theme.

As with everything, I usually overbook myself with everything and "within" everything. Eliel's (mega)party was planned for right after we returned from our Disney vacation -- meaning we were sleep-deprived, overstimulated for months on end and somewhat off of our eating and sleeping schedule. On top of this, I am pregnant and within this pregnancy, I just seem WAAAAY more tired than usual. Especially after eating -- almost can slip into a coma if I wasn't distracted by my 2 yo flinging rice off the spoon!

Anyhow, for both my sanity and my family's mental health, I "downgraded" this party to a small intimate "just-us" party....which means that I didn't go and make him a special birthday shirt, or assemble awesome garden/veggietale favorites, or cut a humongous Bob the Tomato from poster board to "pin the nose on Bob" game, or, or, or...
guess my creativity is grieving a little...

And not just any cake, but my first fondant cake with VeggieTale characters!

K, remember it is my first cake, so it's not completely perfect --- and I know it looks seriously wet (slimy, also came to mind, ack!) but that is the flash bouncing off the fondant!...And I know I had a leaky "h"....(duh, the instructions said to test first...I never listen, like in this post)

Also, I realized that my creation resulted in a slight variation of the VeggieTale plot and characters.

For instance, Bob the Tomato (apparently, to my husband...) seems to be sporting a toupe...

Madame Blueberry is no longer a female for it (she?) looks male. That's really due to an "accident" with her eyelashes -- they just wouldn't stick and her eyes got all googly... :)

Junior Asparagus lost his hat...

I was trying to make a hat, but it kept looking like a turban or like he was recovering from brain just decided to go without...

I have angry and sad peas...And this guy (Jerry the Gord's brother, I can't remember his name...) just.wouldn't.keep.his.shape. Must be all that pizza that he likes!

And speaking of pizza, both my husband and sister thought the infamous VeggieTales counter (only the SETTING of my cake!) was a pizza. My husband thought it was pepperoni and my sister thought it was cheese slices. Both obviously need to watch more television... :)

Anyhow, overall, I am very pleased with the results AND my biggest smile came from Eliel's reaction to the cake...

AND the fact that he recognized ALL the characters! Mission accomplished.

Then, he proceeded to lick his cake ---- claiming it perhaps?
Where did he learn that?!

Then he carefully choose his first victim...

Decided a pea would suffice...

Ate it whole...

Showed a "no prisoners" mentality...

And gave all the yummy details :)

After all that sugar, we had him open his gift...

...played some silly games...

and then went to Cheeky Monkeys to burn off the fondant and some energy!

And if you want info on the cake -- where my inspiration came from, how to do the marshmallow fondant or to just be wowed by newest blog sister, that post is coming right up!

Friday, April 15, 2011

The Sisterhood of the Missing Bum....

Entering my second trimester, and with the weather getting slightly warmer (I am in Canada, after all...), I recently purchased a Bella Band.

For those of you that don't know what this's like a really expensive tube top made for wearing around the belly so us pregnant ladies can still wear our "cute" jeans. You will know the moms who are wearing a Bella Band by the smile on their faces. Why smiling?

It's because of our little secret....

You don't know it, but shh, our zipper is down and pants are unbuttoned.
Yes! Hold the Aunt Jemima waffle syrup!

It's true. We are totally holding up an adult conversation with you meanwhile KNOWING that our pants are undone. This competes for a first place ribbon, against other amazing things like the power of the smell of buttered popcorn and how it convinces you to buy the large --- 'you can eat it all' (sadly, I usually do..)
Oh yeah, and we can now breathe. That's just like, a bonus. For now....give me another month or two and I am constantly on the verge of hyperventiliation.

Yes, this is great. But there is a drawback. A side effect. One that isn't really spoken about the medical community, doesn't really hit the press and completely isn't on the "care tag" of the Bella Band.

It should read: Warning, by using this product, you will lose your bum. Be aware of altitude changes and walking up hills, as you are no longer properly balanced. You will no longer have a backside. You will ensure J-Lo's celebrity status.

Yes, it is true. And I have discovered this from personal experience.
Hello, I am Ellen. I wear a Bella Band and I have lost my bum.
Question, how much of reward money should I put up?
Do I need a bounty hunter?

Thursday, April 7, 2011

A Conversation with God: Book Review

Previously having been introduced to Randy Alcorn's “Heaven”, I anticipated reading “A Conversation with God” by Alton Gansky. Both books are similar in that they attempt to answer those real and honest questions that most believers have, such as “what is heaven like”? Or, “what's God's take on homosexuality or abortion”? However, Gansky's format is different in that the questions are answered individually (and personally) by God, Jesus, Paul and other Bible characters.

Overall, I think this book is good and informative. Definitely a potential book study item for a group, such as post-Alpha in that in answers those “next questions” that do come up for a new believer. The language is very understandable and relatable, but this is where I start to believe this book falls short for the slightly more mature believer. To me, the book seemed to be a “copy and paste” method of taking scriptures and rewording them. Seemed more like a question and answer format of The Message. For example, in one of the “answers”, Jesus says “Peace is a choice. You cannot control all that happens around you but you can control your response to it; you can control how it affects you. Don't worry over anything, but lay every concern on God through prayer and he will give you a peace that goes beyond your ability to understand and that peace will protect your mind and heart”. Yes, this is a rewording of Philipians 4:6-7, and I get the reason why the author has done it this way, but it seems along the lines of a elementary student who doesn't really understand what s/he is really writing about and is just trying to give an answer. This added to a sense of “choppiness” overall, in my opinion.

The other “issue” I had with this book is that in order to have a conversation with God, the author has to “speak” for God – which I wasn't entirely comfortable with. If the whole idea is that God is omniscient, how can the author speak for God? I think this situation was handled reasonably well with the chapter on Heaven, where the author repeatedly mentioned that there was a lot to discover, but now wasn't the time (and etc.) and things would be revealed in their own time, in God's time. The part where I really questioned this method was in the chapter of “Why are there two sexes?” Gansky (answering for God) says “After his creation, Adam worked in the garden of Eden. He had responsibilities and tasks. Early on, I gave him the task of naming the animals. On the surface, that may seem unusual. I am certainly capable of naming animals Myself and revealing those animals to Adam. But I had a goal in mind: I wanted him to feel alone, which was the best thing I could have done for him”. What?! It references Genesis 2:20 (the man gave names to all the livestock, the birds of the air and all the beasts of the field. But for Adam, no suitable helper was found”). Where in that Scripture does it imply that God WANTED Adam to feel alone? I really don't think it's appropriate for the author or anyone, to put words into God's mouth or motivations into His Plan. Its such instances like this that prevent this book from being one that I would enthusiastically recommend to others.

This is not to say that this wouldn't be an enjoyable book for the mature believer, but it's almost along the lines of being a physicist sitting in a Earth Science classroom, hearing rocks being identified as “the grey one” or “the round one”. And admittedly, I did come to a different understanding of a few passages.

Overall, this doesn't seem like a conversation per se, but more like an infomercial.