sickness has entered our home. it is stubborn, unrelenting and refusing to leave.

last monday night bear developed a fever. it kept creeping upwards, it hit +39.4c and plateaued. my 5yo was lethargic and listless,  without any other typical sick symptoms’ no runny nose, no belly ache, no cough, no nothing. just a fever. then finally the fever started to creep back down, and bear began eating more and playing again. he missed so much school last week. luckily he is only in SK so it’s not as though he will fall behind.

today to my dismay, a cough and drippy nose has bravely presented itself in bear’s head.  he is coughing chronically, consistently and it is driving us all bit mad.  his eyes look red from the tired that sickness brings. his behaviour is just plain obnoxious, as he is trying to keep up with the day playing and interacting with his family. all his body wants to do is rest.


a morning bath, while his little brother was at preschool.

as his mama, it’s hard to find that balance with rest and play, especially because so much of last week was spent vegging, watching tv and sleeping. we had a busy weekend planned, but had to pull back and stay closer to home. i wanted bear as recharged for school, as possible. i did send him to school today, because he and i  need space. plus, i think he was healthy enough.

(knock on wood!)


my lion has been stuck at home, by default. luckily, he has been happy to play and lounge in his pj’s!

the rest of us see fine and  not showing any signs of illness, but i’m not holding my breath. i am sure with time, we too will get knocked down. sickness will kick our butts sooner rather than later.

such is life.

xo, mama lola

christmas bucket list!

christmas is a very fun n’ busy time of year. the boys, especially bear, keeps asking when december will get here, because that is when we start our holiday festivities at our house.

we hang up the large advent calender i made a couple of years ago, DH battles with the lights outside and gets them up on our front porch, and within the first week of december we get our christmas tree purchased and decorated.

to make sure we get everything done this season, i made this bucket list. i couldn’t fit everything on there that happens, as christmas is a very busy season!


packages 3


what’s on your christmas bucket list this year? anything new?

what are your x-mas traditions?


xo, mama lola

festive felt crafts!


felt is such a wonderful material to work with.
here is a festive felt collection of crafts, which will add a colourful touch of colour and warmth to any holiday home.


felt ornaments from fantastic toys
christmas trees from natural suburbia
twisted felt garland from purl bee
another holly garland from megan nielsen
felt pinecone, felt good from honeysuckle
make your own mistletoe from stay-at-home artist
half eaten gingerbread man from elsie marley
i must say that half eaten gingerbread man is hilarious and such a good idea!
xo, mama lola

christmas crafts for kids!

christmas crafts, kids christmas crafts, paper crafts, reindeer crafts, santa claus crafts
tis the season again to make all sorts of adorable christmas crafts with the kids. i know my kids are ready to get their x-mas craft ON!!! they have both chosen their favourite crafts from this collection! There is a craft that has been recommended to me by other parents and that’s hand casting! They’ve had their children put their hands together in a casting pot and had a 3D (realistic) model of their hands come out, I think that sounds amazing, plus not only is it a craft, it’s also a great gift for a parent or grandparent, before you start though you’ve got to check out some casting tips first to make sure it goes off without a hitch, safety first! I’m seriously considering getting it done as a surpise for the other half.
kids christmas crafts, christmas tree crafts
christmas crafts, christmas tree crafts
christmas tree craft from our crafts n’ things
christmas crafts, kids crafts, santa claus crafts, paper plate crafts
kids craft paperplate santa from family ever after blog
santa mask, santa claus craft, kids christmas craft
santa mask from
reindeer craft, reindeer crown craft, christmas crown
handprint reindeer hat from putti’s world
kids christmas craft, christmas toilet paper roll craft, reindeer craft
toilet roll reindeer from happy hooligans
winter craft, snowflake craft, christmas craft
button snowflakes from handmade beginnings
candy cane craft, christmas craft, button craft

button candy canes from ramblings of a crazy woman

time to go gather up some buttons, brown construction paper and cotton balls!
xo, mama lola

holiday garlands!

i  {LOVE}  garlands.
i love how you can make them out of everything and anything. you can decorate a plain wall, a festive table, a banister or a window. i love the combinations of textures, colours and patterns garlands can hold, and i love the simplicity of the garlands included in this collection.

felt ball garland from oh happy day
snowflake garland from nifty thrifty things
red and green DIY paper garland from so i don’t forget
recycled paper origami garland from home
holiday holly garland from library of thoughts
i love all of these garlands so much! 
they are simple, but eye catching and fun to make!
which one is your favourite?
xo, mama lola

oreo cookie and white chocolate bark!

i didn’t get around to posting any of the holiday treats and crafts we got up to this season. but, i have a few easy things i want to share, that aren’t necessarily x-mas related. i will start with this highly addictive (you’ve now been warned) bark. i’ve never made bark before and i was looking on pinterest and came across THIS super easy, super delish recipe at bakers royale.


15 oreo cookies
10-30 oz white chocolate 


1. line your pan with parchment or wax paper, leaving lots of overhang for easy removal at the end.

2. place chocolate in a double boiler over low heat and stir continuously, until chocolate is completely melted. i chopped and shaved the chocolate first, to help speed the melting process.  then, transfer the chocolate to a heat proof bowl and cool for 5 minutes. 

3. add chopped oreos and stir to combine. Pour mixture into pan. use a spatula to smooth out top. sprinkle more oreos on top if desired.

4. let the bark solidify in the fridge for at least 30 minutes. remove from pan, cut up and ENJOY!

i’m salivating just looking at these pics. holy mama, this was easy and yummy!
i made one batch with chopped candy canes sprinkled on top, but that was a bit too sweet (even for me!)
xo, mama lola


wishing everyone a happy holidays!
we are in the midst of our christmas celebrations. last night with my folks, tonight at home, tomorrow with dear hubby’s family. so far santa has been very impressed with the kids and they have received lots of wonderful new toys and books and things!

here are a few pictures from our jouluaatto with my parents. it is tradition in finland to celebrate x-mas on the 24th, so we always enjoy a beautiful meal prepared by my mom. after dinner santa comes and while i was growing up he actually came into our living room and i would sing or dance for him. he then passed out our gifts. for our boys, we always seem to just miss joulupukki, he knocks on the door or window, but by the time we get there he’s gone. luckily however, he has left gifts under the tree for us!

tonight we are all heading to bed early, so that we can celebrate lots tomorrow!

xo, mama lola

ho! ho! holiday traditions!

i am desperately trying to incorporate finnish christmas traditions into our canadian holiday season. i find food is an easy and fun way to do that..

on the weekend i made some joulupuuro, translated as christmas porridge, which i think is basically rice pudding for all you english speakers. i also made some kiisseli to go with it. it’s like a thick fruit soup and you can use any ol’ fruit (fresh or dried), but for this time of year i use dried plums, apples, apricots and raisins. (in the warmer months i sometimes make rhubarb soup and my mom makes a wicked blueberry soup.)

for iltapala (bedtime snack) we each enjoyed a bowl of warm joulupuuro with a big heaping of kiisseli on top. the cinnamon smells wafted through the house adding to the holiday magic at our house.

the instructions are in metric as that’s what the finns use. easy enough to convert if you need to thanks to google!

this is where i got the recipe and directions from.


200 g dried plums
1 l water
3/4 dl sugar

place plums (and other fruit), water and sugar into a large pot. let it simmer on a low heat for 20-30 minutes* or until fruit is soft. add water if needed.

1/2 dl water
21/2 tblsp potato flour/ potato starch
mix water and potatoflour/ potato starch in a bowl. add slowly to pot with steaming fruits and let it simmer for a few minutes.

the amounts are a starting point i find. i didn’t measure my dried fruits, but just grabbed a handful of each and threw them in. i also increased my water and potato flour amounts slightly. the potatoflour is a thickening agent, if you want the soup to be thicker add more potato flour. i also threw in a cinnamon stick and a sprinkle of nutmeg.

* this time may vary depending on how hard your fruit is.

also, we made some more reindeer cookies using chocolate chip ready-made cookie dough. they tasted delish and looked adorable!

time to go and wrap gifts. we haven’t done any yet! yikes!
also, just wanted to mention that i am loving the sirius radio and the all day x-mas music we get to listen to! fun! fun! fun!

xo, mama lola

holiday magic.

i am a real fan of christmas. i have such lovely memories from my own childhood of holidays spent with my family back in finland. my mom would cook an amazing dinner for us to enjoy on christmas eve. we never had turkey, like they serve here, but instead we had a multiple course meal which included glazed ham, fresh fish, possibly some smoked reindeer meat, various vegetables cooked in a variety of ways and of course ample desserts and treats to be nibbled on.  as an adult today, i recognize the efforts she made each year trying to create some holiday magic at our house. and not just with food either; my mom was into making our own decorations and collecting natural treasures, and still is. (*note: i was speaking with a friend who fondly remembers last year’s holiday magic at my parents’ house, so it’s not just me).

joulutonttu, or the christmas elf left some chocolates for the kids in the advent calendar. it was messy and joyful. bear waited years before we gave him chocolate, lion is so lucky to be the second born!

i want my kids to feel the magic of the holidays too. it’s hard though, because my kids are still particularly little and their enthusiasm is very limited. but, still i plough on forward.

today bear and i made these cookies.

i’ve always been terrified of the ready-made doughs you can buy at the grocery store, but when i saw this recipe and saw how cute the cookies were i made an executive decision to ignore my fears and bake on. the simplicity and ease was shocking, but the chemicals still kinda freak me out. that being said, i think we created some holiday magic with this easy baking recipe, no clean up, all around hassle free.

this is the original recipe via pillsbury.
all you need is the cookie dough, they recommend the gingerbread one, but my local store didn’t have any so we used the albino sugar cookie stuff instead. various candies depending on the look you’re going for. we used various M&M colours for eyes and noses etc. the original recipe calls for chocolate chips for eyes, but we like colour in our cookies! also, make sure you get small pretzels. bear was so pleased in the end!

tomorrow i’m taking the kids to see the muppets! can’t wait!
i feel nostalgic already!

xo, mama lola
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