January 17, 2017

Christmas 2016

I know, I know, Christmas 2016 is so last year. Ha! But in the spirit of playing catchup in this space of mine, and since I love having these recaps to look back on, here's a little look at how we spent our Christmas.

There's not a lot to report on. Being in my last month of pregnancy for December, I was tired, sore and not in a condition to do a whole lot. It was also cold and a lot of my energy was spent on preparing for baby. We didn't get out to do really anything Christmas related, other than to visit Santa (which was probably the highlight of the month if I'm being honest - the visit went better than I could have ever hoped for!). Activities like tobogganing were out of the question for me (plus we didn't get snow until Christmas rolled around), skating was out and even anything including much walking was challenging for me. We did drive through Spruce Meadows Christmas Lights, but it was far too cold to get out to walk around. Anyway, our time was spent at home, as a family, and I know we have many Christmases ahead of us to do all the things!

Jim's parents arrived just before Christmas and spent the holidays at our place. My dad wasn't able to make it up this year because he ended up getting sick and the roads were pretty bad. Ange joined us again for Christmas Day dinner, as did my sister-in-law and our 3 nephews. It was a packed house and I love it that way!

Of course, I have very little photos to show for it. I tried to be really present over the holidays which meant I wasn't pulling my phone out to take very many photos. Another year and no family photo! Ack, must improve upon that next year.

Thanks to everyone who sent us a Christmas card! I loved them all. I promise that next year I will be more organized and send one in return ;)

January 11, 2017

The Books I've Been Reading {#15}

Since I missed doing this post last month, I'll be talking about the books I read in November and December. Two out of the seven books I read were complete duds, but the other five more than made up for them. December was a slow reading month. Once I finished, on December 16, what would be my last book for the year, I just didn't have the time or the energy to read anything else. I started When Breath Becomes Air, but my heart just wasn't in it, so I put it aside until it was. I picked it back up once I was home from the hospital and it's the first book I read of 2017, but I'll be talking about it in next months post.

I plan to talk about my bookish goals (and recap my 2016 year of reading - spoiler: it's been my best year since starting this blog 5 years ago!) in another post, including my expectations on what my reading will look like this year.

In the meantime, here's what I read to round out 2016!

Fiction Book Reviews

1. You Had Me at Woof: How Dogs Taught Me the Secrets of Happiness by Julie Klam: I had such high hopes for this book, but it was one of the worst books I think I've ever read. The story telling was disjointed, it was boring, and I have no idea how this got published. I was horrified by the lack of control and training Klam exhibited upon her own rescue dogs. Peeing and pooping all over her apartment, biting not only her and her husband, but her toddler!!!?, not trained to walk on leashes, snapping and barking at every person they walked by. I just don't get it. What did this book bring to readers other than frustration and annoyance? You can read my full rant HERE.  (1/5 stars)

2. Happiness for Beginners by Katherine Carter: This was one of the best books I read in 2016. Like, it's right up there with One True Loves by Taylor Jenkins Reid. It was fun and easy to read, but it also had depth and a lot of food for thought.  It was funny and witty, hopeful, sad and left me wanting more, but in a good way. Just a delightful book, not one you would expect to love so much. I highly recommend this one if you haven't read it yet. (5/5 stars)

3/4/5. Winter Street/Winter Stroll/Winter Storms (Winter Trilogy) by Elin Hilderbrand: A lovely, really cute series that I had fun reading. Perfect books to fill that need of wanting to read something wintery/Christmassy. They're short, but full of characters and details, and you will find yourself wanting to visit Nantucket in December when you're done. I read them back to back to back, which I recommend doing if you haven't read any of them yet since the first two in the series do end abruptly and with a bit of a cliff hanger. (3/5 stars)

6. Wrapped Up in You by Carole Matthews: Oh man, this was the other flop of the bunch. Unfortunately, this was also my last A Slice of Brie Book Club for the time being, and instead of going out with a bang, we all suffered through 400+ pages of a boring, annoying and ridiculous storyline. This book was SO cheesy and just totally unbelievable. Full book club review/rant HERE. (1/5 stars)

7. Behind Closed Doors by B.A. Paris: I read this mystery/thriller in one day and really enjoyed it. It's creepy, intense at times, and I couldn't put it down as I needed to know how the story was going to unfold and how it was all going to wrap up. One of the best endings in a mystery/thriller I've read in a long time! (4/5 stars).

What have you been reading lately?

What books are you looking forward to reading in 2017?

Linking up with Steph & Jana for Show Us Your Books!

January 05, 2017

Welcome, Little Emmy

One week ago, on December 28th, Miss Emmeline Marie Fraser entered this world at 10:17 a.m., and just like with the birth of Sully, our lives were changed in an instant.

Emmy is the piece of our family puzzle that completes us. She is the calm to Sully's storm. She is the daughter I always hoped for. She is healthy, and beautiful, and I fell in love with her instantly. I want so desperately to freeze time and make the newborn stage last longer, but I'm also looking forward to watching her grow up, to see the little girl she will turn into.

And like her brother, we wanted to give her a strong name, one she will grow into, but also one that gives us a cute nickname to call her by.

She's our little Emmy and she's perfect. All 6 pounds, 14 ounces of her.

Emmy's delivery went even smoother than could have been expected. I feel incredibly blessed to have had the birth that we had, and I will be sharing her birth story on the blog in the next little while. In the meantime, I'm cherishing every moment I get to snuggle with both my babies.

Thanks again for all the messages, texts, and phone calls congratulating us on the birth of Miss Emmy.