Tag Archives: vacation

An Activity Bag a Day {while Mama’s away}

An Activity Bag a Day While Mama s Away | Mama Papa BubbaThis weekend, after nearly 3 years of rarely leaving my little lady for more than a couple of hours at a time, I spent a weekend away in Whistler with my best girlfriends from high school.  While I was a teensy bit anxious about it all, the fact that she was staying home with her Papa made it much easier than if it was the both of us going away at the same time. That being said, my mama tendencies made sure the house was in order and the fridge and cupboards were well-stocked before leaving.  I also knew I wanted to leave a little something special for Grae for each day I was away so that she knew I was thinking of her and would have something from her mama if she was missing me just a little bit.  Each of the bags contained a little note and all of the items needed to do a fun activity of some sort – something I knew Miss G would love and would be helpful if there were any ‘lulls’ throughout the weekend.

Here’s a peek at what was inside…

IMG 0209The day before I was leaving for my trip, Gracen came to me and said with big eyes, “I have an idea!”  She explained an elaborate ‘hockey station’ that would involve moving our living room carpet, sweeping underneath, making nets, and creating little hockey sticks.  When I saw this set of miniature sticks and balls, I knew they’d be a total hit. 

IMG 0211Knowing that Brad and Grae planned on visiting Science World, I left our membership card and a gift card that could be used for snacks during the visit in the Saturday bag.  The visit would have been enough, but since one of our favourite exhibits involves launching parachutes, I included a couple of inexpensive parachute guys to experiment with afterwards.

IMG 0213On days when Brad gets up with Grae and lets me sleep in, the two of them sometimes enjoy some morning television together (a rarity in our house).  I decided to go with a lazy Sunday theme and pack up the makings of a special movie morning – a couple of videos and some yummy treats (wild rice sticks and unsweetened dried mango for Miss G and popped chips for Brad).

IMG 0215Just in case, I also included a ‘bonus bag’ to be used if needed.  Inside were a few thick cardboard pieces, a box of sugar cubes, some white glue, and instructions to use the items to build sugar cube structures of any sort.

After a lovely weekend filled with reminiscing, 11:30 breakfasts, and quiet afternoons reading at the beach, I returned home to a quiet house.  It took all I had not to go into Gracen’s room and snuggle up with her as she napped, and when she did finally wake, after a whole lot of vibrating, leg kicking, hugging, and ‘I missed you’s’, the first thing she said was, “Mama, can we open my last bag together?!  I’ve been waiting for you to come home to do it!”  That right there told me that the activity bags had been a hit.

Together, we opened the final bag (the bonus one) and sat on a blanket underneath our plum tree building structures out of sugar cubes.  It was the perfect finish to my first weekend away.


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An Evening at the Park

IMG 0023IMG 0032What summer vacation is all about…


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Farmer’s Market Goodies

IMG 9902IMG 9906A new sparkly new bracelet and a couple bags of organic veggies, and she’s one very happy little lady.


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Farm Life {Through my New Lens}

One of the things I was spoiled with on my recent birthday was a camera lens I’ve been lusting after for a long while now.  Though I’ve only had it a few hours, I must say – I think I’m already in love!  I took it along on a walk of the family farm tonight and here are some of the images I was able to snap…

IMG 9789IMG 9815IMG 9796IMG 9798IMG 9808IMG 9806IMG 9821IMG 9818IMG 9830IMG 9836IMG 9848As far as my new challenge goes, I have to say I’m loving it!  My camera has remained in manual mode since the day of our workshop and every single photo I’ve taken since this post has been shot manually.  They certainly haven’t all been good (in fact many have been pitch black), but after two months of practice, I can say without a doubt that I’m so glad I took the leap.  My photos are slowly getting better, shooting in manual is much more natural now, and I have a ton more control on what my photos actually turn out like.  And I can almost guarantee that this new lens will make the transition that much more fun.


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A Morning at the Park

IMG 7308IMG 7309IMG 7343IMG 7347IMG 7320IMG 7358Okanagan sunshine, my girl, my ma, my adorable niece, and my two sweet nephews… It all makes for a pretty great morning.   

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A Morning in the Sunny Okanagan

IMG 7240A book tent in Grandma and Poppop’s backyard…

IMG 7241Running on the grass…

IMG 7243Swinging in a tree…

IMG 7252Learning about lacrosse…

IMG 7254And Bella hugs.  

Add all of these to the list of things we’ll miss while in Kuwait for round 2.


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ReBar Modern Food

IMG 6942Tonight, under the recommendation of Cascadia Kids (an awesome online resource – check it out!), we headed out to ReBar Modern Food for dinner.  

IMG 6937The restaurant, which prides itself on carefully and conscientiously preparing food that is local and nutritious, had an awesome {mostly veggie} menu and a fun kids menu to boot.  After going through the options, Miss G confidently selected the ‘Curious George’,  a peanut butter and banana sandwich with a honey drizzle on delicious bread with an almond milk to drink.  

IMG 6939During the wait for her meal, she was given paper and crayons to use, but they weren’t needed for long as her food arrived before we’d even put in our orders.  Though our food wasn’t quite as timely (there was a large group ahead of us), it was absolutely delicious when it arrived (even Brad loved his vegetarian meal!) and the servers were all very friendly.

IMG 6946Yummy food, local ingredients, and lovely servers in a munchkin-friendly joint?  Now that’s my kind of place. 

IMG 6945ReBar Modern Food is located at 50 Bastion Square in Victoria, BC and is open 7 days a week. 


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Downtown Victoria

This morning after our visit to Beacon Hill Children’s Farm, we headed downtown to walk around and see the sights.  We took photos in front of all the ultra-touristy spots (we’re cheesy like that) and it took me back to my first ever trip to Victoria with my friend Laura when we were 12 years old.  We both flew in an airplane for the first time that trip (how different things are for Miss G!), we stayed with Laura’s grandparents, and we visited all of the most touristy spots, film cameras in hand.  It’s funny to think that both Grae and I have the same photos, only twenty years {and many technological leaps} apart.

IMG 6864IMG 6867IMG 6871IMG 6879IMG 6875IMG 6882IMG 6888The only difference is the photos with the killer whales… Those certainly weren’t around during my first Victoria trip. Gracen adored them and wanted to visit and touch each one we saw.  Perhaps I have a new photo project on my hands? ☺


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iPhoneography // Headed Home

IMG 8852IMG 8805IMG 8806IMG 8807

.until next time, Okanagan.

.a practice in patience.

.nearly home.

.celebrating with sushi.

Today we left the lovely Okanagan eager to get home, unpack our suitcases, and get back to life as usual…  This final leg of our Christmas holiday adventures made up hours 32 to 39.5 of our trek, and let me tell you, we were ready to be home.  While the first half of our trip was uneventful (other than the fact that the Connector was a skating rink), not long after passing the old toll booth centre, the traffic came to a standstill.  I find it easy to get impatient in these situations… Gracen had just fallen asleep moments before and it would have been incredibly lovely to gain some distance while enjoying an hour of silence, but that wasn’t in the cards for today.  An hour and a half later(long after she’d awoken from her slumber), we were still sitting in the middle of nowhere, now attempting to entertain a toddler strapped into her rear-facing seat.  Of course, we got through it.  When we did get moving again, we eventually passed an accident scene where an SUV had been crushed between the meridian and a semi truck.  And then it struck…  That mixed feeling of absolute sickness and pure gratefulness all at once. 


How lucky we are to have had the opportunity to wait.  How lucky we’re home safely after 3 weeks of winter road tripping.  We’re home safe and sound, and that’s all that matters.


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Snow Dough {for 4}

I loved this simple variation on the usual cloud dough, and today I simplified it even further for some messy morning sensory play with the cousins.  To create some “snow dough” of our own, I simply made our usual cloud/moon dough and dumped in a couple of small bottles of silvery light blue glitter.  A fun way to kickstart the New Year, right?  

Though I could have added more festive / wintery items (mini evergreen trees, plastic animals, snowman accessories, etc.) to the sensory bin, I just stuck to the usuals this time around… Plastic cups, bowls, spoons, and cookie cutters and the kiddos loved it.

IMG 4042Three of the four munchkins were very eager to join.

IMG 4052Let the fun begin!

IMG 4053The sparkles are hard to see, but if you look closely, you should be able to spot them.

IMG 4048Kinslee digging in.

IMG 4066The fourth monkey just couldn’t resist the fun.

IMG 4076Snow dough toes. ☺

IMG 4072Korbin was a master moulder.

IMG 4073A girl who isn’t afraid to get messy. 

IMG 4075Snow dough smoothie, anyone?

IMG 4085Experimenting with snow dough snowmen…

IMG 4089A safer building site.

IMG 4090Snowballs stacked.

IMG 4097Ummm, Grae… What happened to your hair?

IMG 4098Who says the snow dough has to stay in the bin?

IMG 4103Mission accomplished!

IMG 4104This explains things.


Sparkly Snow Dough (we doubled this recipe for a group of 4 children)

  • 8 cups of all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup of baby oil (or other oil)
  • 1 small container of white/silver/blue glitter

Mix with your hands or a whisk until ingredients are evenly distributed.  Play!


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