Thursday, December 30, 2010

Christmas Creations

My mom and I made our ornaments together this year. Little bed time mice.

I made Monograms for all my nieces and nephews this year. 11 all together and they were lots of work but I loved every single one of them. Butterflies and birds for the girls, trains and cars for the boys.

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Christmas Festivities

Merry Christmas to all. I have been very neglectful in my posting the past while. I have to say, this season is tough and then not being in your own home can make things harder to organize so I've been bad at getting posts off. Forgive me???

I am pretty sure you all read my sisters blog so I don't think you all want to hear about our Millar Christmas since Im sure she has already filled you in on the details. I can tell you that we had a great time. I learned I need to step up my game with Matty's stocking since he had only two little gifts and then his few under the tree. He saw his cousins loot and kind of looked at me with this expression of " hey, mom, whats up? Where are all of mine?" and then kept trying to steal some of Isaiah's present. So, that note was made. He was very happy with his gifts and I think Levi enjoyed the hype of it all. Metalic food was a bit of a bummer but I think the only hitch.

Once everyone left, I came down with violent stomach flue and had to suffer through that for quite a while. So much fun and then Connor (my little brother) got it too. We spent the 26th together on seperate couches sleeping. I felt great on the 27th and no one else was showing any signs of illness so we thought we could head out and see if there were any great boxing week sales. Guess what? Levi chose to suddenly show a symptom: vomiting! All over himself and the carseat. We had little choice but to find somewhere to get him cleaned up and I was out a snowsuit so I found a blanket on sale and we had him wrapped up tight. He seemed to heal up pretty quickly. The next day we fed him cautiously and all seemed to go quite well. So by the 29th we were home free.

Then we had the celebration at Dave's parents and once again it was a great time. All the cousins together in one place being spoiled rotten. Here are some pictures of our time.
Here we have Matty and Henry tearing into a gift from Oma and Pake.

Once again tearing open gifts and having a wonderful time.

Here is Brenna and Eleanor opening some of their gifts.

Henry and Sam enjoying some Pake lap at the dinner table.

This years two youngest together.

Oma went out to the library and, knowing her grandkids, remembered their favourite books which they enjoyed a lot.

Five of the six grandkids together on the couch. Brenna had only just woken up and wasn't quite ready for the crowd.

Levi enjoying absolutely everything!

We left there with very full tummies, gifts galore and eyes sagging with fatigue. It was such a good time had by all that it kind of went on until close to 10 and then we had an hour drive home again. Dave and I had an eventful drive home. As we were driving Levi spewed once again. All over the clean snowsuit and carseat. I guess I was wrong about him being better eh? We had to stop at a Macs, buy some papertowels and do our best. Blah!

I remember growing up, Christmas with our cousins always meant someone was sick. Is is Christmas without sickness... I woudntl know!

Anyways, this time of year always leaves me feeling so blessed (vomiting or not). All the luxuries we have and the gift of families that love us and whom we love... We can so easily take it all for granted.

I hope you all had a wonderful time full of great memories. I know we did.

Saturday, December 11, 2010

Good Ol' Hockey Game

Yesterday Jo and Aidan's neighbours celebrated their son Aiden's second birthday by inviting us all to attend a Sens game. I had told Matty about it earlier in the day and for the rest of the day he kept asking me " hockey game? hockey game?"

This was some experience for Matthews first NHL game because they had a box. I always knew the boxes were suppose to be lush but I had not expected what we got. 4 or 5 different hot trays full of fantastic food, drinks of every kind (alcoholic and not), a fire place, leather seats, 16 seats overlooking the ice, a private bathroom, a coatroom, and sliding glass doors to block out cold and noise for those not wanting the game experience.

Matthew went nuts for it all. He grabbed a plate right away and started piling it high with pop corn and pretzels and onion rings (the reachable platter) and then got a drink and headed for a seat.

He enjoyed the lights and the folding seats a lot but then the game started and everything changed. He was in awe. It was absolutely adorable. He even said "Oh!" and pointed. He then looked at me with a smile and said "Hocky Game!"

The kids ate, cheered, threw things at unfortunate dwellers below us and played games as the got bored. I think great fun was had by all.

At one point the mascot came up to say hi to the birthday boy and Matty was the first to spot him. He jumped out of his skin and just started to scream. I tried to convince him he was nice but the most he would do was to say hi while standing behind me. Thankfully everyone else enjoyed the mascot otherwise the special visit would have been a waste.

Aidan enjoying some of the food while looking out onto the ice.
Matthew's fantastic hat head watching the hockey game with facination.

Levi was in on the action too and loved every minute. He was a little vacuum though and I had to constantly tear things from his mouth before he chocked on them.

We didnt stay the whole game since the little ones were beginning to get tired (actually it was probably more because I was getting tired of chasing Levi around) so we heade3d back to the van and returned home. it was such a great time and i ate terribly but wonderfuly.

Happy 2nd birthday Aiden. Thanks for all the fun!

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

A Glimps of Things I Find in Levi's Mouth.

Ornament hook, piece of floor tile and some piece of food from the floor.


Friday, December 3, 2010

All Quiet on the Home Front

It's been a while since I have mentioned anything at all about the house. The reason being there isn't too much to report yet.

Dave was working the month of November. He tried to spend his evenings at the house working away after a long day of work with clients. However, many nights ended up being busy with other events and so he spent some time with the boys and I as well as other friends.

Now he is back at the house plugging away to make it liveable by Christmas. He's framed in the windows and has even installed some of them. He's put in new plumbing but there is still no water and he's hoping to finish the electrical soon and then have it inspected. The tile is bought for our bathrooms and the basement is some what dug out...

I havent been out to the house in a while. The last time I went I had camera in hand ready to take pictures but I couldnt really capture what was done in a picture. Hopefully in a week or so I will have a picture or two to show you of something.

Just thought I should give those of you who are interested an update on our home.

Wednesday, December 1, 2010


Hello strangers. I am so sorry for how long it has been since I have last posted anything. Please let me give you all my excuses even though I really do hate being given them.

As you all know, the boys and I have been bunking at my sister's place since the end of October. We set up our dwelling and made ourselves at home. It didnt last too long before reasons pulled me away from the home for a week and a half and we became nomads.

First, the boys and I stayed with my parents at their place because everyday I needed to do things in town. Instead of spending the money on gas we just settled in there for a few days. The boys were comfortable there and slept well. It seemed like a fun idea.
Cozy movie time with Papa

I went on a little trip for a day and the boys stayed with Grammie and Papa and then the next day we were ready to head back to Uncle Aidan's.

Instead we ended up heading to Daves families house where we stayed for 4 days. It was a really nice visit and Matty and Levi enjoyed the attention. Levi was unsettled a bit what with all the changes and he refused to be held by anyone but me but it was nice to be around that
side of the family.
Levi and Matty playing a weird game Daddy taught them. The rule of the game is to pass the object from mouth to mouth... no hands allowed. slightly unsanitary but their family :) Both of them love the game. Big smiles and giggles. Can't be beat.

Matty and Levi cruising on the wagon together. This is a very favourite toy.

Matty and Omke Emke sharing some cereal before bed.

Rides with Pake!

Once again, when our time was up there we planned to return to Aunty Jos when yet another event was happening in town. So back to Grammies we went, bags and all to set up camp once more.
Smiles dont get much bigger than that.

At this point both boys were just ready for home. They played and what not but were grumpy and whiney. I cant say I blame them.

Then after a busy Sunday we finally returned "home" to Uncle Aidans and Aunty Jo's. It took a few days to get back into routine and get the boys settled but now we are back to our comfort level. The boys play happily and sleep beautifully.

In all of this I am desperate for our home. I want the boys to have a place they know is home. A constant in their life. I have been their constant and that is good. Its just pretty tiring. I am the only thing they depend on to stay the same. I cant leave their sides unless they are asleep... I hope it all settles back to a normal life once we have a home of our own. What we have now, however is a perfect substitute until that time comes. As Matty likes to say: "We go home, Aunty Jos?"

Yes my love, we go home, aunty Jos.

Monday, November 15, 2010

Lest We Forget

Remebrance Day is a very meaningful day to me. Since I was a little girl, every year I sang with the choir I was a part of for the ceremony near the hill. We sang In Flanders Field and God save the Queen, O Canada and sometimes others as well. As I stood there, I could see the faces of our vets. Some of them too old to stand for the ceremony, others saluting with all their might. I always fought to hold back tears. The moment of silence is where I prayed. I thanked God for our troops. I prayed for the families left behind, for the troops who came home but were never the same, for the children, for the enemies... So much to pray for. So many to remember.

No one wants war. Not a single one of our troops would say they love killing and fighting, but the cause is peace. It is peace for those who dont have to leave the comforts of their homes. We get to remain comfortable while they are lacking almost everything we take for granted. Why do they fight? For their countries, for their families, for strangers who live a life of peace and wish it to continue.

This year, here in Ottawa, a group of people decided to start selling white poppies. We wear the red poppies to show we remember our troops. This group wished to fight against those who sacrifice their lives for us and tell others we should not fight but be peaceful. How exactly can we have peace without our troops??? I was so saddned by this movement. It reminded me of people who tried to deny the Holocaust. No respect to those who fell or those who try to protect our Country.

More than ever, I wanted to take my boys down to the Cenotaph to be part of the ceremony. I want to teach them the sacrifice that is made for us. The meaning of this day of remembrance and how important it is. And so that is what we did.

Downtown was a zoo and it made me so glad. So many people showing their support. Matty was tired and unsure of his surroundings but once things got started he was interested. He loved the canons pounding and he was absolutely amazed at the fighter planes that flew overhead (really low).

This is a face of absolute amazement. No fear here.

We heard the choir sing, we heard the trumpet sound and the commands given to the forces present. I witnessed tears on the part of some and faught back my own once more. As much as I wanted to take my poppy and place it on the tomb of the unknown soldier, it was not possible since Levi was no longer willing to be happy. Off we went from the crowds to head home. Before we got too far, however, I had our picture taken to commemorate our first time at the ceremony.

Did my boys understand any of it? No! I do believe, however, that it was meaningful and that if we continue to do it, they will grow to see the importance of it and not just go for the guns. This was Matty's desire the whole time. "Guns Mommy? Guns?"

May we always remember, lest we forget!

Friday, November 12, 2010

My Current Dwelling Place

This is where I am living with the boys right now:

Isn't it nice?

When my sister and brother-in-law found out that we were going to take them up on the offer of living with them, they were immediately ready to get to work. Jo and Aidan's basement is currently unfinished but had an area where the kids could play and watch movies. With our coming, Aidan jumped to work on getting a room ready for us.

The future plan for the basement is for teenage boys to reside but it was not a priority. In enters Katie. Aidan got the room all set. The windows are mostly molded in, the closet is all molded and it works perfectly for us.

We are so greatful to have a beautiful place like this to live. I don't know how many people get excited about communal living but I was excited about it. So was my sister. We were the kind of sisters who, when we had the choice to look for beds for our room, chose one double bed. Why not two? We enjoyed being close together. When we had bunk beds most nights we ended up in the same tiny bed anyways. We wouldn't have changed it for the world.

Now we are under the same roof again. The house is loud but it is a joy filled loudness. 7 kids under the age of 8. 3 adults (2 of which are moms). You would think that could cause problems but we really enjoy the community. We try to give and take mutually, we discuss our devotions throughout the day. Its an on going dialogue that changes shapes but never stops.

All communities have their struggles and I am sure there are many things that I do that may annoy my sister and brother in law but Im pretty sure all of us would say we would be sad if this wasn't what we were doing. All these memories and relationships that we are building and making are things that will never be forgotten. Matthew loves his cousins and gets excited to play with them everyday and Levi loves his Norah.
(insert picture)

They are each others playgrounds.

I am forever grateful for such a wonderful place to live. I have support and love while my husband is away for longer stretches than I am used to and very welcome distractions for loneliness I would otherwise be feeling. Thank you for your loving arms and home. We can never forget it.

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Moving Week

I am no longer a city dweller. CRAZY!

Saturday was our moving day and it was a bit complicated since some things needed to be moved to where I am staying now (Jo and Aidan's house) while all the rest had to go to the house. I did my best to be organized but there are always hitches in the plans.

I made it to Jo's without clothes since the dressers never made it here but mostly it was smooth going.

Let me go back a bit and tell you more about the working up to moving day.

We needed to prime the apartment. Pretty much every single wall in our apartment was dark so they needed to be taken care of. The new tenant thought our colours were "like living in halloween all year long" and fair enough, they were bright and different (living area: red and orange, hall and bedroom: dark brown, kitchen: red, Matty/ laundry room: bright blue).
Matty's shoe was a primer casualty.

So I got my crew of helpers together and we got to work.
Tara in her painting attire, annoyed at me for the picture taking.

Karin giving her time even after a sleepless night.

I am still blown away by all the amazing people I have in my life. Meals were prepared for us, child care to help me get packing done, a work crew to paint and organize, a moving crew, people praying and loving us, several offers for a place to stay... I can't imagine doing it without the support.

Moving day came sooner than I could have imagined but we were mostly ready.
We piled everything that was packed into one area so I could double check there was nothing forgotten.

I had an unexpected surprise when I went to get coffee for the guys who were helping us move and found I had no wallet. I called my mom, I searched every bag in my car, I checked my parents street and my laneway... nothing. I tried cancelling my credit card as soon as I could but the lady was no help and being stressed, I rudely told her id figure something else out and hung up on her (sorry mastercard lady) and flew home very grumpily. I thought checking the messages would be wise and thankfully there was one message. It was from an employee from a store near my parents and they had found my wallet. PHEW!!!

Off I went to get my wallet and everything was in it. Nothing was missing at all. In all of this I was so thankful for Gods faithfulness (and it was a good thing I couldnt cancel my credit card). Initially I was handling it well, with God's strength. Then when I really wasnt finding it I began to lose my patience and started trying to take control of everything which wasnt good. Then God made it right anyways. I sang my heart out in the car on the way to get my wallet (Im glad no one could hear me since it was interesting. All my words put to some random music I was making up) and was then able to get the coffee and treats and continue with the move.

By 2:30 the apartment was empty and spotless and it was on to the next adventure: Van Dyks and van der Meers under one roof.

More on that another time. In the meantime if you are looking for me, Im with Jo and Aidan and can be reached there... just in case anyone is wondering :)

Monday, October 25, 2010

Missing in Action

I am so sorry for my absence in writing anything on this blog lately. We have to move out of this apartment by Saturday and there is so much to do and it is hard to do it with two little ones.

Dave is at the house from the morning until 10:30 most nights working away. This week he is even spending the nights there. I am home packing away as well as I can and being blessed by all the fantastic people who have come to give a hand or feed us.

From here I will be moving with the boys into my sisters apartment where we will stay until after Christmas. Dave will work and live at the house most nights and we will visit each other when we can.

Already the boys have trouble saying goodbye to daddy so it is going to be hard on us all. Matty has never been so whiney. The poor little man is seeing his home be turned upsidedown and he sees so little of daddy that when he is present, he isnt really ever out of sight. Levi needs me. He wont go to sleep if anyone else puts him down. He wont stay happy is he cant see me... Try getting anything done!!!

So, think of me, all of you who have houses you can beautiful and make homey this season... I will be without my house for some time still but once it is done it will be beautiful.

I do have pictures of some of the framing that Dave has done recently but I havent uploaded them yet so when I get a chance it will be up here for you all to see. Until then, if you go back to the last pictures I posted, just add a bit of wood on the walls and a set of stairs and you will have the basic idea. Its been a lot of work for Dave. Walls arent straight, floors arent straight... everything has to be done exactly so so that once we remove the outside of the house it will all be square. My man is pretty amazing... I just wish he could live with us during this time.

Saturday, October 16, 2010

Goodbye House of Firsts

As excited as I am to move on to bigger and better things, this old house is such a foutain of memories for me.

It was the second house I lived in after moving out of my parents house but the first one that was actually tolerable.

It was the first place I got to decorate as my own and stayed in for 4 years.

This house became the home of my husband. We got to come home to this place after our "honeymoon"

I went through my pregnancies in this house.

Pregnant with Matty
Pregnant with Levi

We brought our two children home from the hospital to this house.
Matty on his coming home (2-3 days old)
Levi on his coming home (2 days old)

We played host to several guests and many friends here.
Canada day celebration (one of quite a few at this address)

We were the place to go to if anyone wanted to skate on the canal or to walk to the market.

This will be the first place I will leave with sadness (except when I left my parents house but its still different from that somehow).

This is the first place where I have been able to keep plants alive.

The first place I had so much pride in at first because it was MY place. (That pride has shrunk substancially as time has gone on because we no longer fit here.)

This is the first place we have ever outgrown.

Once we leave here, it will be the first time in... 9 or 10 years that a Millar woman hasn't lived here.

I started my career as a teacher in this house and I ended my career here too.

I have struggled through sleepless nights and depression in this house.

It is the first place that has housed 7 little ones and 4 adults overnight with only one bedroom.

Oh, so many wonderful memories here. It will be hard to say goodbye but easy at the same time. Once this chapter closes, another more exciting one begins. We move from a rental property to our first house which will also be a house of firsts.

Thursday, October 14, 2010


I know it is already Thursday after the Canadian thanksgiving weekend but today has been a terrible day and I thought instead of focusing on that I would bring forth our Thanksgiving festivities as something to dwell on.

Sunday was spent with Dave's family. Unfortunately not everyone could be there. Thats what happens with bigger families... coordinating plans isnt the easiest task in the world. We left church and headed over to Russell and arrived just a few minutes before the family got home. Dave decided to build a large pile of leaves so Matty could play in them. He didnt actually think it was that fun... he actually cried that he wanted out of them. The thought was nice though. I know I always enjoyed playing in leaves as a kid. Maybe it was just a rough day for Matthew.
In this picture, I convinced him to stop crying and just say cheese. He was pulled out of the leaves seconds after the picture, however.

Once everyone got home, we went inside and just hung out. Had a nice lunch together and chatted and looked at pictures of their trip to Holland. Oh do I ever want to travel again. I have the itch... I have for so long.

Dave pushed Matty through the pile of leaves in the wagon and it sent the leaves flying all around.

Anyways, Dave's dad didnt get home until 10 minutes before we had to leave but we had a little visit with him and then it was off to church and then home.

Monday was thanksgiving with my family. I headed off to Almonte in the morning to meet up with my sister. There was an art crawl going on and we thought we could check some of it out. Not much was obviously open so we ended up only stopping at one place (mosaic) and then headed off to a pumpkin stand.

My sister had seen this place and thought of how nice pictures would be so we got there and started to snap away. It was neat. the farmer had just arrived and was unloading lots of pumpkins in different areas and we exchanged a few words on politics and the differences between the city and country.

I had no idea how bad I looked until I got to my sisters place and looked in a mirror. It was the first time I looked in the mirror all day. Should have thought to do that before leaving the house in the morning.

Once that was done, and a bit more driving was out of the way, we headed back to my sisters place and readied ourselves for thanksgiving dinner. Aidan was making beer can chickens on he BBQ and we has roasted veggies and asparagus with a lemon sauce. Oh boy was it good. It was a full house though. We had Josh and Karin, Tammy and Anthony, my Dad and Connor (mom was sick and was unable to come which was a drag), Daniel and Amanda and Dave and I. And dont foget all the kiddos. So many beautiful kiddos. 12 of them all together.

Josh and Karin made the pies for dessert and I did cheat and have a piece of pie (Josh makes a killer pie crust so you just cant say no, even when you're me and you really dont like pie). Then there was chatting and laughing until it was time to get the babes packed into the car and head home.

It was a beautiful time. So many things to be thankful for and so many wonderful people to be thankful with. I echo the end of a prayer we said on occasion as children: "Thank you, Lord, for everything."

Friday, October 8, 2010

Shopping Anyone?

That is, from 1921.

Country loyalty:

Found in our floor and is a wealth of enjoyment to look through.