14 Months Old

This little guy is hard to catch on film (or on a digital memory card for that matter). The moment he notices the camera, he runs towards me hoping that I’ll let him press all the buttons. Despite horrible lighting conditions, I managed to get a good shot of him today, though. He is turning 14 months old and he is still a very happy, curious, loving, slightly rough, and impatient little boy. He has no problem expressing himself, particularly when things aren’t going his way. He is getting stronger and stronger both physically and with respect to communicating. He is using sign language every day and he really enjoys the ability to communicate with us on a more sophisticated level. The signs he is using right now are; eat, more, drink, bird, down, cold, baby, ball, book, bed, b@th, hot, out, change and wait (although he is incapable of waiting himself).

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Happy New Year

I was planning to do a New Year’s greeting with a nice family shot today, but like 99% of the other times I’ve planned to do family shots, it’s like the sun doesn’t even get up and it stays grey and extremely dark the entire day. So no light and therefore no family photo!  Instead I am wishing everyone Happy New Year with some amazing artwork from Sienna. She has always been very clear on whatever it is she has painted or drawn, but up until know it has been difficult to interpret her art in the same way that she has  herself. On the pictures below, however, I think it is very easy to see that it is a monkey with a yellow hand holding some balloons and a lion eating some purple flowers while 2 snakes are peeking out from a bush.

The artist featured with her most recent masterpieces.
The artist featured with her most recent masterpieces.

Christmas Time

The 24th started early with some cookie making in the kitchen. Sienna made cute little heart-shaped almond cookies and Elliot was very keen to with help with some quality controls in the process. He ensured that the cookie dough was the right consistency and temperature and later on when Moster came to join in on all the goodies- and treat-makings, he sampled all of the various kinds of sprinkles. Moster hung out for a while and she and Sienna had a lot of fun playing games. In the late afternoon we all went to Vesterbrogade to eat a delicious dinner and unwrap some presents. In Denmark it is customary to open presents in the evening, but we usually keep the presents from Canada for Christmas morning, so we do it both the Danish and the Canadian way. Amongst other things, Sienna got the Nintendo player that she had been wishing for for ages and Elliot got a little cow vehicle (not featured) so he can chase Sienna around on her mouse vehicle. Thank you very much for all the presents from Canada also. They included lots of Dora stuff, great books and lots of cars. We hope everyone out there had as nice and relaxing a holiday as we did.

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Decorating the Christmas Tree

I barely recovered from a week with the flu so all the Christmas stuff we had planned for this weekend (Christmas goodies with Moster and baking cookies with some friends) unfortunately had to be cancelled. So no pictures to show! Instead I got a few snapshots ready from last weekend when Sienna was decorating the Christmas tree with daddy (and with a little help from Elliot as well).

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2nd Advent

Last Sunday was 2nd Advent and it was time for more quality time with the family. Sienna recently started skating with her dad so we began by going to a very busy skating rink outside the park. After that it was time to make Christmas decorations and goodies at mormor and BC’s house. While the kids spent the night with their grandparents, Shawn and I went for a little walk in Tivoli to enjoy all the nice Christmas lights.
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This is a picture from the first year we made Christmas decorations. Sienna is 1½ years old at this point.
This is a picture from the first year we made Christmas decorations. Sienna is 1½ years old at this point.

Happy Birthday Uncle Jacob

Today Uncle Jacob is turning 30 so a BIG HAPPY BIRTHDAY goes out from here. Sienna has made a birthday drawing for you and along with this very cool depiction of a shark, a Christmas circle, a kissing circle (you go in the kissing circle to kiss some dogs and some cats), a heart (because I love uncle Jacob… because he is goofin’ around with me (Sienna’s words)) and a monkey sticking its tongue out, we also got you a cool present that you will get on Saturday.

Sienna is making a very special birthday greeting for her Uncle Jacob
Sienna is making a very special birthday greeting for her Uncle Jacob

Sienna actually wrote her own name on Uncle Jacob's Birthday greeting!
Sienna actually wrote her own name on Uncle Jacob's Birthday greeting!

This girl makes me so proud…

Sienna started getting an allowance about 3 weeks ago. She gets $5 a week and today that had accumulated to around $15, so it was time to go to the mall to do some shopping. While I was at the craft store, the kids and Shawn were at the toy store and Shawn was explaining to her, what her money could buy. When I joined the party, Sienna had decided to spend her entire fortune on a red ball and a little egg/rattle thing for herself, and get this; a little black ball for Elliot and a rattle for him too… “because I love him and he doesn’t have his own money” (her words). You just gotta love this kid!

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Traditions

I love traditions and Sienna is now at the age where she can start to grasp the concept, so we kicked off the first Sunday of advent with some Christmas related activities. First of PJ (Santa’s little helper/Sienna’s bear) had hung up advent calendars for the kids. Elliot got a game and Sienna got a nice grocery basket for when she goes shopping in her fully equipped in-house super market. After playing with the new toys for a while, Sienna went with her dad to the skating rink. Meanwhile Elliot and I went downtown to pick up some new stuff to decorate with. Elliot had a hard time understanding that all the glittering balls weren’t meant for throwing, but we made it out of the store without braking too many items. I’m not crazy about the Christmas elfs, so I usually bring home rein dears or mooses instead. This time we found some quilted grey ones that were cute and decorative. When Sienna and Shawn returned from the skating rink, we all sat down to have hot chocolate with cream, æbleskiver (the little round donuts) and clementines, which to me are very symbolic of Christmas time. I decided that this would be a great way to kick off Christmas for time to come, so hot chocolate, æbleskiver, and clementines on the first day of advent will be a tradition in this family from now on.

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Everybody is enjoying hot chocolate, æbleskiver and clementines. Sienna and I also made a very simple and alternative advent wreath (which barely shows in the picture). Next week we might be doing something a little bit more artistic with mormor.

Elliot’s Birthday Party

Here are the pictures from Elliot’s first birthday party. We had the entire family over and the day went really well. Before everyone arrived, Sienna and Latimer were busy decorating the miniature muffins and I was busy decorating his cake, which was shaped as a giant cupcake. The birthday theme was somewhat spontaneous. Instead of my usual long term planning I didn’t decide what to do until I was at the grocery store two days before. The only somewhat nice napkins they had were with Buzz Lightyear, hence I decided to go with the space theme. I decorated the spaceship cookies the night before and also prepared some marshmallow-fondant stars. I figured the giant cupcake could serve as a foreign planet. Other than cupcakes and cookies we had a feast of delicious sandwiches that Shawn had prepared. When I put Elliot’s birthday cake in front of him, he used a potato chip to scoop off some of the frosting. Unfortunately the little guy ended up having a major allergic reaction, because the frosting had both dairy and hazelnuts in it to which he is apparently allergic. With a little help from some antihistamine he quickly recovered and was able to open his presents and enjoy the rest of the party.

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November 17 (Elliot’s Birthday)

As mentioned earlier we celebrated Elliot on Sunday, but in addition to this I decided to give him some quality time on his actual birthday, so I stayed home from work to snuggle with him. My good friend Chris came by to play and to top-up on the kisses and hugs. Mormor also popped by to give him some extra lovin’ and a gift. Since we recently found out that he is allergic to dairy, it is somewhat limiting what you can produce in respect to birthday cakes with frosting etc. I ended up giving him some little donuts that are known as “æbleskiver” in Denmark. They are usually only out around Christmas time and they are super yummy. Elliot would definitely agree with me on that one!

Besides a Barbar truck from mormor, a wooden truck from Chris and a game from mommy, he got some nice warm slippers from his cousins Kenzie and Logan, aunt Angela and Uncle Pete. Thank you very much guys. They are the right size and just what he needed. Perfect! Also thanks to great grandma and great grandpa for the nice birthday card.

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Happy Birthday Farmor

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To those of you who are just joining the blog, "farmor" is the Danish word for grandma (the father's mother) and Joanne prefers that title over grandma. If Elliot is looking slightly puzzled, it's because Shawn is waving Mac (the dog) in front of the camera to get his attention.

A BIG HAPPY BIRTHDAY to farmor in Canada from everybody in Copenhagen. We hope you have a very nice day.

The End of Baby Elliot

My maternity leave ended on Sunday so this week has been quite busy. A few hours ago I just realized that I haven’t made arrangements for Baby Elliot’s Birthday, which is coming up in less than 2 weeks. So as soon as the kids were in bed I sat down to create an invitation. When he turns one he is officially a toddler (in my book anyhow), so he will have to lose his cute nickname that Sienna gave him long before he was born, i.e. “Baby Elliot”. I don’t think we will be calling him “Toddler Elliot” instead. He will just be known to the world as “Elliot”.

By the way, I have also found the time to update the missing posts/pictures from our trip. Scroll down or click here: Belize , Honduras, Inside the Carnival Legend ,and The Florida Aquarium.

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Melanie

A few days after we left for Canada Sienna and Elliot got a new little cousin in Denmark. Melanie was born on October 11, and her parents are Maibritt and Jacob (my younger brother). Sienna and I went to meet her for the first time yesterday. She was very cute, but not in the mood for pictures. She would either make herself cross-eyed or put her hands in front of her face or yell at us. I managed to get a couple of shots while she was napping and a single one before she covered her face with her hands. Congratulations to Maibritt and Jacob on their beautiful new baby girl.

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Thanks Guys

This will probably be the never-ending story with me, but I am still far behind on the pictures. I am sorting like a crazy and will soon return with some of the missing ones, but before I do that I just want to express our gratitude to Kim, Chris and Lucas, who spent a week with us at the cruise and thereafter endured our company for another 5 days while we stayed at their house in downtown Toronto. Amazingly enough we were still good friends after spending all this time together.

Thank you so much for everything guys!

A big thanks to Kim, Chris and Lucas. See you next year!
A big thanks to Kim, Chris and Lucas. See you next year!