things I have done.

First, I gave you my life/bucket list.  Then, I gave you my f*ck it list.  Last week, I gave you the list of things I've never done.  And now, I give you...

the list of things I have done

I'm forty-one.  And eleven-twelfths.

And I have...

1:  Been a runway model.

circa 1990

2:  Moved from The Philippines to Canada.

3:  Lived in Hawai'i.

4:  Proposed to my husband.  Naked.

5:  Played the bass guitar in a band.

good grief, my hair...

6:  Traveled by train from Manitoba to British Columbia.

7:  Given birth with pain medication.

8:  Joined the Mile High Club.

9:  Earned a Computer Engineering degree.

10:  Given birth without pain medication.

mama and mini

11:  Taken figure skating lessons.

12:  Taken Hawai'ian Hula dance lessons.

13:  Taken tae kwon do classes.

14:  Taken Sikaran classes.

15:  Had 3 of my Canada Moms Blog posts selected by McClatchy-Tribune for US syndication.

16:  Danced the Hawai'ian Hula on a parade float.

17:  Painted a whole room by myself.

18:  Cared for a dog and 3 cats.  But not all at the same time.

19:  Done the CRON eating plan.  And had great success.

20:  Written the first 3 chapters of an erotic romance novel.

21:  Opened my own Hawai'ian Hula dance school.  

22:  Started and maintained a blog of my own for 4 years.

This post submitted to Mama Kat's Writer's Workshop and all its prompt-y goodness.

things I've never done.

I'm forty-one.  And eleven-twelfths.

And I've never:

1. Set foot in a Scottish Castle.

Eilean Donan seat of Clan MacRae

2. Needed to colour my hair... yet.

3. Eaten frog legs.

4. Been to Miami.

5. Run a marathon.

6. Starred in a porn film.

7. Seen Casablanca.

8. Read The Lord of the Rings (I know... I hang my head in shame).

9. Ridden an elephant.

10. Worn stilettos.

11. Been to Nova Scotia.

12. Been to Newfoundland.

13. Been to Prince Edward Island.

14. Watched Superbad.

15. Discovered a new planet.

16. Gotten a tattoo.

17. Drunk a flaming sambucca.

18. Harvested pineapples.

19. Taken a boat down the River Nile.

20. Guest starred on Doctor Who.

21. Slept in a hammock on a beach.

The idea for this post was stolen from Mama Kat, who stole it from the Pioneer Woman.  Lots of kleptos I follow. 
If you're  klepto too, feel free to steal this.  It's okay -- I'll just look away, like, oh, look at this plant, it's so nice... have you stolen it yet?  no? okay... oh, look, I'll just count the leaves over here...

the north of 49 edition of thankful-icity.

We celebrated our Thanksgiving weekend up here in the Great White North once again.  On Sunday night, we had a small celebration, just the 4 of us, here at Casa de AM.  Here's a picture of us just before we inhaled our dinner of glazed ham, mashed potatoes, corn, strawberry-spinach salad, and pumpkin pie.

Taken by Roomie... who apparently is a giant. Or can fly.

And despite being given a rather rag-tag, roughed-and-tumbled, chewed-up-and-spat-out type of year, I'm still so very thankful...

... for my beautiful, brilliant and healthy children, who shower their parents with love, smoochy kisses, and big squishy hugs on a daily basis.

... for my hot nerd-boy husband Roomie, who, after all these years, still loves me and finds me attractive enough to perv me at every opportunity.

... that my kids spent the WHOLE Thanksgiving day playing nicely with each other and not fighting, leaving their sick mom to lie on the couch in the next room, moaning pathetically and blowing her nose.

... for having Thanksgiving dinner the day before Thanksgiving, so we could have leftovers on Thanksgiving day, because of the, you know, moaning and blowing -- which could refer to something entirely different, but sadly doesn't (see previous point).
And apparently, I love the word "Thanksgiving".

... for my gorgeous front yard garden that, every Spring, looks like this...

Pretty and not crappy... unlike now.
... for my pretend boyfriend Gerard Butler, who, I'm ashamed to admit, I'm uncomfortable watching in movies and prefer seeing in interviews and still photos.

... that, after a year and a half, my bathroom renos are finally FINISHED.

... that I can still surprise my son with evidence that his mom was cool -- at some point in ancient times...
Lam: "Mom, who was that lady you were talking to?"

Me: "Oh, that was my friend Mae. I used to model with her."


... for all the gorgeous and brilliant online ladies I've had the honour of blogging with and who I also now proudly call my friends.

... for 6 years of blogging -- 4 of which have been spent blogging in my lovely Life Candy home.

... for my on-line friends who've become real life friends, and my real life friends who've become on-line friends.

... that the creators of Days of Our Lives brought back a whole bunch of my favourite classic DOOL characters, dooming me to many days of tuning in to a soap opera I haven't watched since I was a teenager -- you know, in ancient times.

... for the library where we can borrow DVDs of my ever-favourite show, 'Allo 'Allo!... and probably a whole bunch of other show that don't really exist to me for they are not 'Allo 'Allo!.

... for bacon.

... for my naturopath.

... for Heinz Doofenshmirtz.

... for yoga pants.

... for the Deluxe Sushi/Sashimi Bento at Yujiro that's only $20, Prawn & Papaya Salad at Wasabi Sabi, Pavlova at Baked Expectations, iced green tea at Starbucks, and battered pickerel from Henderson's at The Forks.

... for ice cream topped with fresh raspberries my husband just picked from the raspberry bush in our garden.

Mmm... fruity goodness...

... for all of my gorgeous, sweet Life Candy readers.  Yeah, you guys!

... for so much more!

Hope your Thanksgiving was (and will be) simply fantastic!  xoxo

welcome to life candy's 4th birthday blogstravaganza!!!

We're 4 years old today, and I'm so excited!!!  Just like these 2 adorable people of mine on their own combined 4th and 2nd birthday celebration in 2006...

See?  They can barely contain themselves!  Ahhh!!!

Who can blame them?!  Birthdays are so awesome, and today, I'm celebrating -- not like I did for our 1st and 2nd blogoversaries, where the festivities lasted for days (seriously, check out those links, they're unreal) -- but it's still going to be so fun that you'll be well and truly hung over and will need the whole weekend to recover.

This year, I'm going to try to pack a whole bunch of crap into this one blog post, but because I understand your need to do other things like work and maybe go to the bathroom, I'll try to keep this post as short as possible by condensing all of my lists to 4 items each.  You know, because it's our 4th Blogoversary.  I'm going to be so screwed when we turn 25...

Anyway, come on in, grab a drink and a slice of pavlova, give the DJ your requests, and enjoy the par-tay!!!

Where are we at?
Compared to the rapid growth of the first couple of years, year 4 of Life Candy was a time of slowing down.  I spent less time blogging and tweeting about life and more time actually living it.  And you can tell by the numbers.  Which I'm totally okay with.  Totally.  I think.

Since last October 7th, I...
  • wrote only 108 blog posts, which is an all-time low.  I'd like to double that over Year 5.  Yay!

  • added 43 new subscribers to my total.

  • grew to 283 Facebook Fans.

  • only have 101 Google Followers, probably due in part to the fact that I keep removing the gadget from my sidebar, then putting it back again.  Repeatedly.  I still don't know if I should take it down again like I did with the Facebook widget.  Yeah, I'm out of control.

Favourite Blog Posts
It was difficult choosing the posts that best encapsulated Year 4.  Do I go with the family posts?  Or the simple/green living posts?  Then there are the writing prompt posts.  In the end, I just decided to choose the ones that gave me a good laugh.

1: A Simple Misunderstanding
This is like a regular day here at home.  We are confused a lot.  And share our space with Pokemon.

2: More Confessions of a Happy Girl
I love doing confession posts.  I never realized just how odd I really am until I started doing these.

3: Car Conversations: The 11th Anniversary Edition
My husband is really my best friend.  And we talk about weird things.  Especially when he's a tad tipsy.

4: Seven
A look back deep into the bowels of my archives.  Bowels?  How about 'annals'?  Nope, too close to 'anal'.  I really love this brief retrospective.

Favourite Comments
Over all 4 years here on LC, you, my beloved readers, have shown me what a hilarious group you are.  (Check out the comments from Year 1 and Year 2)
This year...

"And whenever someone mentions Having My Baby as a detestable song (OK, it is) I like to bring up that old gem by Musique. Fast forward to the 60 second mark for the highlight. I was going to call it the climax, but that would sound like a cheap pun."
- by Albert Bannatyne, 30 Songs

"I just had a lengthy internal dialog that involved your freebie lists. I thought it was weird since the subject usually doesn't come up until April. This is kind of weirder...
...and thanks for the Reese's mental image! I'll hang on to that one for a while (that's actually way more sincere than it sounds, nudge, nudge, wink wink)"
- by Harmzie, More Confessions of a Happy Girl

"Happy anniversary!  It sounds like you had a such a great day together! I can't even imagine an entire day without kids. How awesome.  You and Roomie should totally celebrate by getting his ass waxed. :)"
- by Jenny @ Exconsumer, Car Conversations: The 11th Anniversary Edition

"I'm with you on the 'I' and 'me' thing. Also the misuse of 'myself'.  I could never have a shared email address with hubby. that guy never deletes an email."
- by Myrtle, Things that Make Me Go 'Hmm... I want to stab things'

Blog Shout Outs
The 4 blogs (and bloggers!) that made the biggest impact on me this year...

I've come to consider Jenny one of my bloggie friends.  She's such an inspiration and is one of the forces keeping me on track living simply and paying off debt purposefully.  And she's so much fun!  Oh, and you must check out her awesome homemade fabric softener recipe.  I use it, and it rocks!

Bees With Honey
I'm an introvert (yes.  I am.  weird, eh?) and tend to become a hermit if my friends don't come and drag me out of my little cave to participate in the world.  In my blogging world, that friend is Bruna.  Her reminders on Twitter to join her Let's BEE Friends project every week keep me active when I just want to sit around and eat cheese or surf for pictures of Bradley Cooper, my other pretend boyfriend.

sweet fine day
Jenna and Mark's blog is beautiful in a very simple and classy way.  The pics are breathtaking, and the way they share their daily adventures with their 2 daughters are a true snapshot into their life and lifestyle. When I grow up, I wanna be just like them!

Cheaty Monkey/LouLou's Views
Okay, I cheated.  But these 2 blogs of my dear friends Haley-O and Loukia have been my go-to sites for daily inspiration for maintaining balance and sanity.  I had to mention them both!  They are brilliant, gorgeous, capable, and so very real.  I had the honour and pleasure of writing with them for Canada Moms Blog, and I really couldn't see my online life without them.
And they have great taste in pretend boyfriends, right, Haley?  ;)

Well, I guess that's it.  Thank you all for coming to read me.  I appreciate it more than words can say.
And to all the new readers, welcome to my insanity -- I hope it doesn't scare you off and make you cancel your internet connection and throw away your computers in the off chance you'll see my crazy blog again by accident. At least not permanently.
Year 5 is going to be a great year, so I hope you all come back and join me in all the fun here on Life Candy.


PS - I'm also featured at my friend Bruna's Bees With Honey to help her celebrate her blog's 1st birthday.  Head on over there to continue the party!

miss crafty strikes again.

There appears to be no end to Mini's craft opus.  She is seriously prolific.  We have 2 big bags of 3-dimensional artwork and 2 giant plastic bins of rolled up drawings waiting to be sorted through and trashed recycled sent away lovingly dealt with.

And that doesn't even include what she has on her art blog, Mini's World.

We never know what new brain fart creation waits to be birthed.  I think she's revving up for a new one right now.  Hold me.

More often than not, Mini's crafts are quite good, as evidenced by the big picture of sunflowers we had framed and now feature on the family room wall (the smaller sunflower pic to the right was painted by her brother)...

But, of course, not all her creations are simply artistic in nature.  There was the clever bunny trap -- that she designed, tested and documented -- which made me think she might just take after her parents and become, heaven help her, an engineer...

And even when her art can be only described as "uh, what?", she always makes it with love and heart, like she did when she made, if you recall, the most expensive cat toy in the history of cat toy for her little Mittens...

And now, during her most recent foray into the world of making a new surprise for Mama, she raided the recycling bin for the materials and made this...

Mini has been placing this item in various unexpected places throughout the house for Mama to find and "appreciate" over and over again.  Apparently, freaking Mama out is a most unexpected yet pleasant side-effect.