Tag Archives: reading

The girl’s 8th birthday


For the past few months the girl and I have been reading through the Harry Potter books. It seemed like the logical choice post Narnia. We very much enjoyed the magical aspects of Narina, besides Harry Potter is very very cool and current. We are currently on the sixth book, after each book we watch the movie together, comparing notes, snuggling and enjoying the time together. It is our special time.

When R & I started talking about birthday parties like forever ago, we both agreed that it totally had to be a Harry Potter birthday. So I have to say right now … the internet is evil. There is so much goodness out there, my mind spun with inspiration. I so did not reinvent the wheel for this party, but I took inspiration from many places.

The House Signs

In the beginning I decided that instead of loot bags, each guest would receive a Wizard/Witch robe that I would sew. I spoke to the girl, so that we could keep the guest list small in order to create these robes. However I totally underestimated the cost, even though I used inexpensive fabric, the metres totally added up fast. Still I really love that I made it happen though especially when the kids were all at the party , wearing the robes together it just made it that more magical.

The Wizards & Witches

The invitations were delivered by owl mail (of course!) R very much enjoyed running up to the mailbox, placing the invite in it ringing the doorbell and running off! The guests were very excited to receive owl mail (though one guest felt I *could* have trained owls in time to deliver the invites)

Owl Post

Owl Post close up


I was so not sure what to do, then I stumbled across the idea of having a similar cake to the cake Hagrid gave to Harry when they first met!

The Cake

I have a confession. The preparation for this party was so much fun. I enjoyed sewing all the robes, hand painting the Hogwarts Express & Honeydukes signs … all the little details. The icing on the cake … the kids noticed all the little details (except the floo powder). We did not have any organized games per say. We had a short potions class, then the house elves prepared hotdogs for dinner in the great hall (that looked a lot like the potions classroom). After dinner, the kids headed to the Gryffindor common room, to hang out, look at spell books and then test Every Flavor Beans, trying to guess the flavours. R opened her presents, we had cake then the kids headed outside to fly about on their brooms and used their imaginations to create story lines. It was magical to listen to them.

Hogwarts Express Sign

HoneyDukes Sign and variety of candy

MmmChocolate Frogs!

So remember how I said I did not reinvent the wheel here? The following are some of the amazing places I got inspiration for this Harry Potter birthday … I looked at so many places, I am so hoping I did not miss any links!









The Birthday Girl

Happy Eighth Birthday to my magical girl!

(be sure to check out our Flickr for more pictures)


Summer Reading — Part One


I am in awe that B returns to school in a week and a half. It has been such a great summer, epic family vacation, lake swimming lessons, soccer and tons of time to read! B has faithfully read The Chronicles of Narnia with me almost every night. Both E & B participated in the Summer Reading Program at our local library and enjoyed the challenge (well mostly hehe).

I too have been reading, quite a spectrum of books. I was fortunate to receive a copy of Solitary Man by Carly Phillips in iBook format from the lovelies at Blue Dot Literacy. It was the first time I read a book on my iPhone. As I am an avid library user, used book connoisseur, I suppose I am an old fashion gal longing to hold a book in my hands, smell the pages … Yet it was very nice to curl up, snuggle the toddler and have screen of my phone glow with an entire story at my fingertips.

Solitary Man was a gripping enough story to hold my attention (twitter & facebook are also on my phone, very distracting). The characters are engaging and I could relate to the main character, Kevin. His self doubts, the inability to see himself as others see him are all things I can relate to. To witness his progression to opening his heart to new possibilities had me captivated in the story. This book is so throughly a romance novel, yet there was enough realness to it that I enjoyed escaping into the story. Perfect light summer reading.

Solitary Man was one of Carly Phillips first novels, she has gone on to become a New York Times bestselling author. What first attracted me to wanting to read the book was the author’s history. Carly Phillips left her career as an attorney to stay at home with her daughters (and she knits! The woman is clearly amazing! hehe). Be sure to check out Carly Phillips website, it very well done and even has a list of books she has written that you can download (oh how I wish more authors had well designed websites)!

By the way, if you enjoy reading e-books, some of Carly Phillips older work is available for download at totally reasonable prices (like $2.99 check your favourite e-book retailer).