Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Back to School. . .

And no, I'm not talking about my kids!  I finally applied to do my masters in Counselling Psychology, which has always been my goal, and got accepted!  I started my first courses the beginning of May.  One of the courses that I registered for was an intercession course, which was supposed to run from the beginning of May to the middle/end of June.  The other course is through distance, and runs the full term, from the beginning of May to August.

I was feeling very nervous attending my first class.  It had been so long since I'd been in school, and when you have small children your brain just doesn't work as well as it used to.  I wondered if I would be capable of it.  It didn't help when I got to class that I discovered that the course had actually be further condensed to run for the month of May, with us finishing everything up on the 28th.  I went into panic mode.  Needless to say, the month was crazy.  Monday and Tuesday evening and all day Saturday every week was spent in class.  I missed bedtime at least twice a week, and my poor husband had to navigate swimming lessons with the two boys by himself.  The evenings that I wasn't in class, I was out doing assessment for the course (the course was on assessment for counsellors, so I had to actually assess a child).  During the day, I had four children in the house (my own two, plus the two that I am baby-sitting), so I couldn't get work done during that time.  I say all of that to finally say, I survived it!  Not only did I survive it, but I survived it and pulled off a great mark in the course!  My professor was great, and his course and manner of teaching was a great way to ease myself back into study mode.  I'm so happy!

The second course, I'm not quite as enthused with.  I'm fairly certain that I will avoid online courses from this point on.  It is boring, and I really do not enjoy reading from the computer screen as much as I have to.  It's difficult being willing to 'put yourself out there' with your comments and participation when you've never met the people you are conversing with.  So, we'll see how that course goes!

Overall, I'm feeling good.  I'm feeling like I might have a future in my career choice afterall, and I'm feeling that I'm finally accomplishing my goals and doing something with the education I already have.  I'm happy that my children will get to experience seeing me study and going to school, seeing how important that is to me.  And I'm happy that I will finally get to be doing what I've wanted to do when I'm done the program.  Now, I just have to maintain that motivation and keep plugging through the rest of my program!

Sunday, May 27, 2012

Ahoy, Mateys!

Once again, it's been a while.  I started my Masters program a month ago, and it's been CRAZY.  As such, I'm only now getting around to blogging about my second birthday party, for my 3 year old.  This party was a Pirate Theme, and I felt MUCH more prepared for this one!  All of that being said, the morning of the party we got news that good friends of ours and their youngest son had been killed in a car crash, so we were really out of sorts the whole day.

Since my kids have been so into 'Jake and the Neverland Pirates', which comes on Disney Junior, that is the theme we went with for this birthday party.  My boys were already spending a lot of their time pretending that they are captain hook, Jake, and other characters from the show, so i figured that I'd add to the enjoyment for them!


I didn't get a good picture of the decorations.  We had a bunch of balloons in red, gold, and black (Jake's favourite colous), we had a treasure chest with lots of 'treasures' for prizes and take-home gifts, and we had brown and green 'vines' around the place, to try to give it a jungle/island type of feel.  It was understated, but totally did the job to make the party fun!

Here is the treasure chest:

My two pirates with their pirate gear (we had hats for all the kids) in front of their 'treasure':

My oldest choosing a treasure for himself:


So, I spent a while trying to come up with food, and I had LOTS of ideas!  However, this is what I came up with:

Hot Dog Schooners!  SUPER easy, and the kids loved it!  I also had some blue kool-aid, some gold fish, some cheesies, and some fish Candy.

Once again, I went to Glynnis Kennedy for the cake, and was NOT disappointed.  This time we ordered a double slab cake, half chocolate and half vanilla, since we were expecting more people.  This is what she came up with!

The cake was totally nut-free (thought we didn't have any allergies to worry about at the party, it's nice to know 'just in case' -- so many kids have nut allergies these days) and the coins are chocolate coins (which were REALLY good).  Once again, I was super pleased and will definitely be a return customer!

My Husband got in on the pirate action, and he's loving his Hot Dog Schooner!

I'm not sure if you could actually call this 'blowing' out the candle, it may be more like 'spitting' out the candle.  Either way, he was super proud of himself and really excited to be doing it!


So, I had a couple of games planned (of course) but the kids weren't super interested in playing, they just wanted to play 'pirates' together.  Either way, I managed to pull them together for a couple of the games.

The first game was 'Tic-Toc, Where's the Croc?'.  I hid an egg timer, and the kids had to listen to the ticking to find where it was hidden.  They loved it, it was kind of like hide-and-seek.  Of course, they only played for 3-5 minutes and then they were done. 

The second game was 'Walk the Plank'.  I put a blue tablecloth on the floor, with a plank of wood on it, and I blindfolded the kids and had them walk across.  It was a fun game!  Of course, it only lasted for a couple of minutes as well.  Here's a picture of my oldest 'Walking the Plank':

I had planned on doing a Scavenger hunt, but the kids were having so much fun playing, that I just left them alone.

It was a great party.  I have so many other ideas, I'm sure there will be another pirate themed party in the future!  Here's one last picture of my little man with his favourite birthday present:

So, that's the birthday recap!  Now, the next birthday is my husband's in October, so thankfully I've got a while to figure that one out.  There will be more blogs in the near future, as I have SO much that I haven't written yet!