Thursday, 10 March 2011

Mail time!

What an exciting mail week we had!

First to arrive was our beautiful Way of Light wreath to mark the passage of time through Advent, Lent, and on to Ascension.

I knew it would be beautiful, but to finally order it, receive it, open up its carefully-packaged wrappings, and hold it in my hands, I actually choked up a bit. It is beautifully carved, beautifully finished, and just such a perfect tangible way of walking with Christ through the days of Advent, Lent, and the Easter season.

We began last night, lighting the first candle to mark the beginning of Lent. Tonight we lit the second.

Next to arrive was a (very) late Christmas present for the boys. They had been given some Christmas money and we had something in mind for them to use it on, but it took me a while to find a place in Canada that sold it. I finally found the exact one I wanted at

I highly recommend this website. Everything from their selection to their customer service was excellent. Not a single complaint.

We purchased the Deluxe Road System from Plan Toys. I was a bit nervous after reading some reviews about the pieces being hard to fit together and having plastic connecting bits that broke off, but as you can see, the pieces are made entirely from wood and fit together with no trouble at all. Maybe they've updated the connector style since those reviews, but regardless I was very happy with the product - and, of course, the boys were over the moon.

The road system came with one rail piece to connect it to a railroad set. It fit seamlessly with our Ikea train track (which does, incidentally, have plastic connectors, none of which have broken off in the past year or more of heavy use).

This has got a lot of play so far. Add our old Fisher Price Main Street and you've got a whole town! Add some animals and it's a zoo, too! We'll add various Plan City pieces to it over the years, but there's certainly enough as it is to have excellent play value.

Finally, a backordered book from Amazon arrived this week. I'd placed the order more than a month ago and the rest had already arrived, we were just waiting on this last one for Jacob. The arrived portion had included an Asimov book for my husband, a long-desired set of books for me (Francine River's Mark of the Lion series, which I've read through so many times that I figured it warranted an actual purchase), and a board book for the baby (I Love You, Stinky Face, which I had been annoyed with the first time I saw the title, but fell in love with when I actually read the book - it's so sweet and has quickly become a favourite with both boys). Thank you, Swagbucks!! I've been saving Amazon gift cards for a while to make this order. They add up surprisingly quickly. I'm definitely kicking myself for rolling my eyes every time someone mentioned Swagbucks - I should have signed up long ago.

Anyway, Jacob's book that (finally!) arrived was an Usborne book (way cheaper on Amazon than through our local rep - sorry Kirstie!!), See Inside Your Body.

I first saw this book when we went to a Body Worlds exhibit at Science World a few months ago. Again, much cheaper off Amazon! I love the explanations, illustrations, and flaps. The book is very well done and is a great introduction to the body for the preschool/kindergarten age.

Well! That was our exciting mail week (plus, you know, bills and junk mail). What's arrived in your mailbox lately?

(All of these are my own unsolicited reviews.  I just really liked these products and businesses!)


  1. All of your stuff looks so fun! I love getting stuff in the mail! The wreath is BEAUTIFUL!! What a great way to observe the season.

    And I, too, love the Mark of the Lion series! I finally bought myself the whole set awhile back after having borrowed it from a friend.

  2. That's a great mail week :) That wreath is so beautiful! I am planning on showing my husband because I really want one!

    I also absolutely think that body book is awesome! And so is the train!

  3. We just got that book....Love it! I'm a nurse so of course I think it's adorable when my dd is talking about her lungs and kidneys....and the wreath is breathtaking...I saw it on her website but didn't realize you could buy them.....beautiful!

  4. We have a Cat in the Hat book called Inside Your Outside which Raiden loves -- probably not as much detail as what you have, but really not bad for something that rhymes :). Luckily I know enough about biology to be able to answer a lot of his follow-up questions, heh. Thanks for the idea on something a little more in-depth, though, because he's always asking and loves knowing what the body does! (For example, knowing that white blood cells fight off germs gives us the "in" to give him orange and grape juice because they make his white blood cells stroooooong so they can fight off those germs even faster!)