Saturday, December 28, 2013

Happy 7th Birthday Hayden!

Our adventure into parenthood started on December 19th, 2006.  On that day, we welcomed a healthy baby boy and promptly called him Hayden Stanley Bickmore.

Hayden had been the name we picked out during that "when we have kids" phase of our relationship and it stuck until we actually did.  Stanley was after Brian's late grandfather.  While there was not a super close relationship between Brian and him while we had been together, there was a connection between my pregnancy/child birth and him.  I found out I was pregnant with Hayden on the weekend we went to help pack up his house and Hayden was born a year + 1 day to his passing.

I must say,  I love this kid!  It amazes me to this day how much I love him.  We have our struggles and are facing some major hurdles with him, but those struggles make him my boy!

This year, we took a slightly different approach to his birthday.  We told him no party, but he could invite 1 friend to do an activity of his choosing and a nice meal out.   He chose Laser Tag.  So, we played 2 rounds of laser tag and then went for an early supper at East Side Mario's.   It was pretty perfect.  The kids all had a blast and I didn't have to deal with 8 screaming kids in my house!  On the Sunday, we had my parents over for cake.

Here is a look at my boy over the past 7 years.  Again, I don't have pictures from every birthday, but something from every year at least.



Friday, December 27, 2013

2014 Pinterest Challenge

Is everyone out there as Pinterest addicted as I am?   I mean, seriously, I am on that website E-V-E-R-Y-D-A-Y!!!

This little picture sums up my Pinterest existence

Back in 2012, I joined my girlfriend Diana and her sister in a Pinterest challenge.  The idea was you needed to complete 1 thing you saw on Pinterest each month.  It went strong until the end of the year and then it sort of fizzled out.

I decided this year I was bringing it back!  Even if it was just for myself.  The thing with Pinterest is, you pin about a million things you want to do, buy or make and ACTUALLY do about 3!

2013 was pretty much a bust this year and I am going to make 2014 a little bit more about myself.  My kids are a bit older and more independent and I can do this.

So, here's the deal and I would love for you to join me.  Each month, you need to complete 1 of your pins.  It can be a craft, a recipe, a book or anything else.  Take pictures along the way to document what you did.  At the end of the month, do up a blog post with your pin, show your finished work, even if it was a complete fail!  Also, make sure you give credit where credit is due and link back to the original pin.

Don't have a blog and you refuse to create one? (Which btw, is really silly!   It's free and super easy to do!  I'll walk you through it if you like)  You can share with me on Facebook!

Here is to a Pinteresting 2014 everyone!!

Monday, December 9, 2013

Happy 4th Birthday Abigail!

Last weekend, we celebrated yet another milestone in our home.

Miss Abigail Marjorie Lynne Bickmore turned the big 0-4!

It was an exciting time for sure.  The thing is, she "got it" this year.  She knew what a birthday was really about.  She has been to a couple of birthday parties and for about 2 weeks before the big day, she asked almost every minute when her birthday was. 

When she woke up that Saturday (Nov 30th) she awoke to some simple birthday decorations in both the kitchen and the living room.  She was tickled pink and practically floated with excitement the whole day.  She and I had to go and pick up the cake and she had to tell everyone it was her birthday.  The cake she picked out was a hockey cake.  I had them girl it up with pinks and purples.  Why she wanted a hockey cake is a bit beyond me.  I tried to get her a girly princess one, but no luck.

It was hard to not give in to the temptation of letting her have a small party, but I made a rule when the kids were little, no friend party until the age of 5.  Until then (and even after) it's a simple family party.  It consists of my parents and us.

For some reason, this year it felt perfect!  We had them over for lunch and cake.  Abby opened presents and just beamed when we sang to her.  The rest of the afternoon, the kids played with her gifts and got along....damn near Hallmark I tell ya!

So, in what is now ordinary yearly fashion, it's time to overload you with pictures!  Starting with the "remember when" ones.

Here she is on her "birth" day.

First Birthday

Second Birthday

This is the point of the blog where I win Mother of the Year.....for some reason, I am unable to find ANY pictures from her 3rd birthday.  I am positive I would have taken at least one and I am also pretty sure I had written a really nice blog post last year, with a heart-felt letter to my little girl, but I can't find it I will just include a picture of her at age 3 until I can do better!

I just love this year's can see the pure joy and excitement in her expression.

Now, what would I say to my little girl this year?  I would probably tell her this:

Dearest Abigail,

I love you even more this year then I did last.  You see, as each year passes, my love for you will grow more and more.  As you grow and learn new things, there are more things to love.  I love that you can chat up a storm or look after your babies for hours.  I love that you are the only one that can turn our crazy kitten into mush and have her give you kisses.  I love that you are now going to school and come home to share your new knowledge with us.

You are all I could have asked for in a little girl.  You are kind and generous and willing to share with others.  You have so many little friends and are well liked.

You are willing to help out and do what you can around the house.

As you become just this little bit older, you are seeking your independence.  It's hard to watch you do things for yourself, but also a moment of pride, knowing just how capable you are.

You are full of spunk and attitude.  Don't dare tell you "no", for if we do, a full-on pout will show itself and there is a good chance you won't talk or look at us until we trick you into thinking we have a cookie for you.

You are full of smiles and giggles and they both light up a room. 

If there is one thing you can grow up being confident in, let that be our love for you!  Your whole family loves you and would do anything for you.

You are turning into a fantastic little lady and I can't wait to see what the next year brings for you.

Love Mom

Friday, November 8, 2013

Good Night, Sleep Tight - Episode 1.0

I didn't want to miss my goal, but I'm too pooped to write tonight.

If you need something different to read and you haven't checked it out already, head on over to my other blog

Thursday, November 7, 2013

Would You Rather.....? Round # 1

I needed a few ideas for a blog post and I thought...what better way then to search the net and then play a game of:

Would You Rather....?

Go way back in time and meet your ancestors
(pre 1800's)


Go way into the future and meet your great grandchildren
(post 2200)

 For me, this was pretty easy, I would pick the future.   While it would be fascinating to see exactly who I came from and get some insight as to helped make, I could research that if I was truly interested.  But I would be so curious to see what future "Amy & Brian's" are like.  Plus, let's not forget all the other things you could find out by going into the future.

Which would you pick and why?

Go to for more questions

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Pop Quiz

Here's the question I pose to you:

You make cookies for a  meeting at your house tonight.  The presentation looks like this:

One plate is for the meeting, the others are extra set aside for your family.

The pop quiz question is:
When your husband comes home to have one, which plate will he eat them off of?
*if you picked the fancy on the right, there is a good chance you will be correct*

Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Wear Sunscreen

I've been going over some old songs lately to add to my I Pod.  I came across The Sunscreen Song.  Anyone else remember this song?

It came out just after I graduated high school and it's been 14 years.

I listened to the lyrics and I must tell you, it's all very good advice.  They always say hindsight is 20/20.  It's so true!  If you think back 14 years to the problems you had, you will realize they were probably pretty trivial.   

Listen to the song and read the words, tell me they are not 100% true!!



Monday, November 4, 2013

Update on Life - Abby Edition

So yesterday was the update on Hayden and as promised, today is Abby's turn.

With her 4th birthday just around the corner, she has started junior kindergarten this year too.  The first few weeks were rough.  While she loved school itself, getting her there was a different story.  The walk to the school and into the yard was like making her walk the green mile. 

She has a temper to her and don't you dare tell her no.  She's so much fun to be around though and still loves to play babies.

She has a natural affinity to animals.  We got a new kitten in May and she is the only one that can pick that cat up when it's going all crazy and have it just lay there in her arms and give her kisses.

Here is a little look at my baby girl.

Sunday, November 3, 2013

Update on Life - Hayden Edition

So, I have pretty much ignored this blog since May.

It's not that I couldn't have written, but as everyone knows, life sometimes gets in the way.

I haven't stopped blogging, but have been focused on my other blog more than this one.  A number of reasons for that I guess.  Part of it being that nothing real exciting has happened with us, just regular everyday things that most families deal with.

Anyway, here is a quick update.

The kids are great!  Hayden finished up grade 1 in June and headed on into grade 2 in September.  He is on the cusp of his 7th birthday and is in love with all things sports.  Hockey in particular.  He plays for the local team here and never misses a Peterborough Petes game.  If the Leafs are on tv, he insists on staying up to watch them and if he goes to bed before seeing the end, he will ask the results first thing in the morning or hunt down the Sports channel in the morning to see the recap of the game.

He's missing a few teeth and has the gooniest grin.  Not a day goes by that he doesn't make us laugh.  He talks CONSTANTLY, but we are working on that.

Here he is!


As for Miss Abby?

Check back tomorrow for a little update on her!

Saturday, November 2, 2013

NaBloPoMo 2013 Edition

What is this all about you ask?

Let me give you the quick run down that I "stole" from my girlfriend's blog.

NaBloPoMo stands for National Blog Posting Month. The goal is to write a post a day for an entire month.  You can find more information at

"Thanks Bonnie"

I'm a day behind, as it started yesterday.  I tried to do this last year with my other blog, but failed miserably.  I decided to try it again...with BOTH blogs this time!

Here is to a November of blogging!

I'm posting this exact same post on my other blog!

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Design Help

So, I have decided to take on a small project and I need your help!

A little back story

When Hayden was about 2, we got a little wooden playhouse from my boss.  It was his daughters, but now that she was older, they no longer wanted it and gave it to us.

It's a cute little house and at our other house, we had built a little stone pathway up to it.  We never painted it because I liked the rustic wood look.

When we moved to our current house, the playhouse came with us.

It has sat in the yard for the past 4 years, pretty much untouched and not played with.  Perhaps I never really paid it much attention because I was just waiting for a little girl to want to make it home.

I now that that little girl and I feel she is the perfect age for it.  With that being said, I have also decided that it's time to paint it and I need help picking out colour combos.
Here it is as it currently stands in the yard:

The inside is not very big...probably big enough for a little table and chair.  Perhaps a baby bed.
This is the picture I first saw that inspired me and was my colour combo of choice until Abby said she didn't like it:


Here are the samples we picked (sorry, the quality is not very clear)

This first one is pretty much the colours in the inspiration, the pink, sage-like green and yellow.  I would keep it the same....most of the house yellow, pink posts and trim and green roof.

This one is a bit more, blue and red.  I would paint the house blue, trim red and roof orange.

Now, the colour is WAY off on this one, but from left to right, lime green, plum purple and turquoise.  I would paint the house green, the trim purple and the roof turquoise.
So, yesterday Abby wanted it blue and she likes the pink and yellow.  So, basically, I can't leave it up to the 3 year old  My heart is pulling towards the girly palette....what do you think?  Would you do something totally different from what is here?

Thursday, May 2, 2013

Kids Say The Darndest Things

On our way to Niagara, Hayden says to dad

"Hey dad, let's put our hats on backwards and look cool!"

"You bet Hayden, and then we can really pick up the ladies!"

"Oh yeah, dad!"

Later on the 401, a corvette drives by and Brian says,

"Hey buddy!  That is the car we need to pick up chicks!  Pretty cool huh?"

I pipe in and add " yeah, but there are only 2 seats...nowhere to put those chicks"

"We would find room, wouldn't we Hayden"

This is where it gets fun, Hayden then says,

"But dad, we will need a big cardboard box"

Brian and I look at each other, a little puzzled, Hayden then continues,

"because chicks poop a lot!"

Apparently, Brian and Hayden will be picking up different chicks!

Then tonight, driving into town, Hayden and I take the road that my late grandfather's house is on (now my uncle's).

He correctly points out that Uncle Steve lives on this road..."not great grampa anymore though, because he is......he is......he is extinct.  Extinct means there are no more of them left!"

I had to agree with him.  Our great grampa is extinct, for there will NEVER be another one like him!

Wednesday, April 24, 2013

A Dozen Cupcakes

This is a story about a mom that agreed to make a dozen cupcakes for the Cops For Cancer fundraiser that her son's school was hosting.

Her son wanted camouflage cupcakes, so that mom did a search on her favorite "go-to" site, Pinterest!  She found the perfect tutorial and set out to make them.  Her son wanted Army men on top of them.  That mom soon discovered that little plastic army men are like liquid gold!  Hard to find! 

Because she is a good mom, she did finally manage to secure 6 dozen army men.....she bought more than needed because of their rare availability and the hopes of later selling them on the black market to raise money for college.

She went to the bulk food store to get piping bags, leopard camo print cupcake liners  and food colouring....forgetting the piping bags on the first trip, meaning she was then required to go back to the store a second time.

Things seemed easy enough, but as she got reading, she realized that the instructions called for 2 cake mixes, which means, she would in fact be making about 4 dozen cupcakes.  No problem.....because she picked up extra icing and army men!  So she split up the batter and coloured it into a multitude of colours.  She scooped and spooned, spending more time filling cupcake liners then any one person should. 

Turns out, following the directions in the tutorial only leaves you enough green  and white batter to make 2 dozen.  This leaves enough chocolate batter that you are forced to do something with.

At this point, the smaller child in the family pipes in and asks which ones are hers?  Her lob-sided pigtails make that mom agree to make some mini cupcakes for her preschool friends at daycare.  As the mom pulls out the second dozen pan of mini ones, she remembers that both the preschool and toddler room are sharing space and can just imagine the puppy dog stares of the little ones over the bookcase, wondering how come they don't get cupcakes.  That means that mom should make another 2 dozen mini cupcakes.

After making 2 dozen army cupcakes and 4 dozen mini cupcakes, there is still batter left over.  As it turns out, only enough for 1 1/2 cupcakes.  Now there will be none for the kids to sample.....what is a mom to do?  Correct-o!  Pull out ANOTHER cake mix and whip it up.  Let's remember.....1 cake mix makes about 2 dozen cupcakes.....this means, she will need to decorate another dozen for the school, because both her kids and waist line don't need 2 dozen at home.  After that 2 dozen is ready to go in the oven, there is STILL some batter left (she is convinced it multiplied on it's own when she wasn't looking!)  Guess how many it made?  4......4 cupcakes....the perfect number for home.  So, now she has 4 dozen to go the school, 4 dozen for the daycare and 4 single cupcakes for the kiddos.  Because the second batch was just plain chocolate and it was a pain in the behind to do the camo ones, she reverts back to her old stand by.....Monster Cupcakes. 

Guess what?!!?  There is just enough icing left for 2 dozen cupcakes....those 4 perfect left over ones?  No icing for them!

In the end, she has 23 camo cupcakes, 23 monster cupcakes, 48 mini ones and 4 plain. 

That same mom goes to pick up her son from school and while waiting, hears parts of an announcement....the parts she hears....."cupcakes....tomorrow....not available...."  This is the point when she just about has a coronary and marches down to the office to clarify.  Like it or not, she would be pawning these cupcakes off on somebody....but luckily, the announcement was a bit confusing and just meant that if students hadn't pre-ordered them, they would not be able to get them tomorrow.  Heavy sigh exhaled!!

Apparently, this mom is a bit crazy and should clearly be medicated for this day of baking.  But guess what, she secretly loves it and was so happy to do it!  They needed to go to quality control though!

They passed!