#MicroblogMonday – Win! Win!

Today, I got a FB message saying I had won a free spot/table at a flea market (for a week?) to sell stuff. I never win anything! Much less a FB competition. But this time I did and I’m stoked about it. Now to get pricing the kids’ clothes to sell.

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In another win today, Tadbit will be going to the same daycare/childminder as Paxlet in the fall!!! This topic has consciously been on my mind since December. And subconsciously since (before) she was born. We really like our daycare lady and I wanted both of my kids to go there. It doesn’t hurt that she lives directly across the street from us either. I feel spoiled.

MicroblogMonday For more microposts, go visit Mel’s post at Stirrup Queens.

#MicroblogMonday – Park

It’s still raining, winding and sometimes even sleeting. Welcome to spring in Finland.

The weather doesn’t stop the need for kids to burn off energy, so yesterday morning after being half awake since 4:30am and fully awake since 6am, the kids and I went to Sorsapuisto (duck park).

We were the first ones at the park at 9:25am.

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Paxlet and Tadbit had lots of fun running around.

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It was actually decently warm and a bit sunny while we were there.
MicroblogMonday
For more microposts, go visit Mel’s post at Stirrup Queens.

Funny Finnish-ism: sand cakes and “ei paha”

Spring is here, although you wouldn’t know it by the snow and sleet flurries we’ve had the last couple of days. This means that the sandboxes are no longer covered in snow and the muddy-sandy bog that they had become, has dried up enough to be called a sandbox again. It also means the sandboxes can be played in, much to the children’s delight!

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Here in Finland, kids make “sand cakes” (hiekkakakku*) instead of a “sand castles”. (Unless they are specifically making a sand castle, then they might call it a hiekkalinna.)

And when kids have filled up a bucket/container, flipped it over and before they have taken said bucket/container off the creation, they will often say a little rhyme while tapping the top/bottom to ensure that they get a “good cake”.

Älä tule paha kakku, tule hyvä kakku!
Don’t come a bad cake, come a good cake.

I don’t remember anything like this from growing up or since then, in the US. So this was quite new and charming to me when I first moved to Finland. These days, it is  normal and cute.

Even cuter, is when Paxlet was first learning to make sand cakes, he would only say “ei paha” (no/don’t bad) while performing said  and the last syllable would be higher pitched than the rest. Nowadays, he’s becoming a pro at making sand cakes and has no problems saying the rhyme in its entirety.

*As I googled hiekkakakku to make sure I was spelling it correctly and as one word, I got many hits on an actual cake-type with this name. Most seemed to involve some cognac in the recipe.

#MicroblogMonday – Chocolate

It’s Monday AND I’ve remembered to blog ON Monday! Earlier today (3-4 pm), I had no clue what to write and so it was going to be ‘this and that’ type stuff, but I’ve since had an adventure (9:15-10:30 pm)!

As Tadbit was finally falling asleep, I saw on FB that a Finnish chocolate company posted about a new chocolate flavor (Salty toffee crunch) coming out and their promo-gig to get people involved in tasting it before it hits the shops. In each of the three biggest cities in Finland, they created 100 “hot spots” for the first person to go to and register their phone number, and get a code in return to exchange for one of the new chocolate bars.

One of the hot spots wasn’t too far from my home, so I drove there. While I was pussyfooting around with my car and by the time I turned it off and got out to walk to the hot spot, a dog walker got there and registered it before me. Boohoo!

I went to the only other hot spot somewhat close to me, which happened to be near the hospital/ER. However, this hot spot is on the inside of a walled off construction area, where the original ER entrance was… I was just meters away!!! Boohoo again!

So, I came home empty handed. Thankfully, I have my own chocolate stash (Whole hazelnuts or Salty popcorn) to comfort me.  It’s just not the new flavor.
MicroblogMonday For more microposts, go visit Mel’s post at Stirrup Queens.

Gone too soon

I got a FB message this morning from my ex that a mutual friend of ours from high school committed suicide yesterday. I haven’t spoken to this guy in years, but my heart is still saddened. He was a kind soul and truly wanted to change our world. Depression got the better of him.

My mom once told me*, everyone has a purpose in this life. We may not know what it is, but it’s still there. (Maybe one person’s purpose is to learn to get along better with their mom. Another person’s  would be to change the world.) And for those who decide to leave us before their “natural” time, maybe they have completed their purpose of what they are here to do. We won’t ever know, but maybe that is why they had to leave too early.

I find my mom’s words/concept soothing. It doesn’t take away the grief, but it does help me with the loss. In this case though, I’m struggling with his passing. Honestly, I’m not sure why I’m so sad. It isn’t like I’ve seen or talked to him in years (except for a line or two of text on FB). But, he is a past/former/previous life (when I lived in the US) friend. And when it all comes down to the bare minimal, it is just that: The loss, of a friend, too soon.

 

*I hope I’m doing her explanation/belief justice.

Happy birthday, Tadbit!

My little girl is one year old!! I’m in disbelief, awe and love. Where to begin?

I never expected a second child. I had hoped for a sibling for Paxlet, but I didn’t believe our one frozen embryo would amount to anything (it didn’t, in the end we donated it to science) nor that my body would spontaneously do what it was supposed to on its own. I’m still surprised that my body decided to get pregnant “like that”. I’m also proof that it only takes once to get pregnant. I just can’t believe I have what I’ve wanted for so long. I’m truly lucky.

Tadbit is growing into a little person. She’s quickly developing a personality all her own and whoa is it going to be a big one. But what would you expect when she has me for a momma?

– She doesn’t like to be told “no” (who does?). She gets the biggest pouty-quivery lip when I tell her no and she doesn’t like it. For now, it is insanely cute. Ask me about it again in a few years or when she’s a teen.

– She’s had 6 teeth (two on the bottom and 4 on the top) for a couple of months now. Thankfully not much biting, yet. And no drooling!

– Tadbit has been walking for a bit over a month now. She’s even started running a bit! That could explain why she doesn’t talk yet. Her brain and body have been working hard on getting her up and going, so she can keep up with her brother.

– She does babble up a storm. Again, she has me for a momma. She does “caw” at crows, or any bird really.

– Speaking of crows, she loves animals. Our cat wouldn’t mind being loved a bit less, but that’s what a grumpy 16 year old cat is like. She can spot a dog half a block away. And when we went to see Pappa’s horses, Tadbit eagerly had her hand out to touch the horse. She even got to sit on one of the horses! No fear from her.

– Tadbit is a hugger. I just love all the times she will lay her head on me. I’m soaking them up, because I know they won’t last forever. (It’s definitely harder to get hugs from Paxlet these days.) On the other hand, she has started to throw tantrums. Don’t want to lay on the changing table? She screams and tries to roll away. Don’t want to put outside clothes and shoes on? She can arch her back with the best of them. Momma is too slow when feeding her food? She screams the house down!

– This little girl of ours just adores her bigger brother. She copies him, in good and bad, emulates him the best she can and really just wants to be around him. When Paxlet is at daycare, she will push his cars around like she sees him doing. Paxlet, being bigger, has a decent collection of choking hazard toys. We’ve put them in a little carrying case that Tadbit can’t open yet. But she wants to play with those toys so badly! So, we’ve started letting her play with them as long as Mr Siili or I am sitting there with her. She is in heaven! She’ll go find the “treasure chest”, bring it to one of us and plop her bum on the ground with a big grin on her face, waiting for us to open it up. How can you say no to that?

I love my little girl! This year has gone by fast and I know future years will be that same. But I can’t wait to see how this little girl will grow, change and become her own person. At the same time, it will continue to be amazing to see how much a like and yet different she and her brother are. They might share the same genes, but they are definitely their own person.

I love them both and can’t imagine my life without either of them. I count my lucky stars every day.