The Twins’ Birth Story

It was Tuesday evening. I was 31 weeks pregnant (seven months) and had been on maternity leave for a week and a half. We had spent the week getting the boys room ready:  two cribs built, framed photos hanging on the wall, two carseats and a double stroller purchased and sitting in the living room.

Andreas and I were sitting on the couch, chowing through a bowl of noodles and watching an episode of Downton Abbey. But at that moment, not even Maggie Smith’s classic one-liners could chase away my growing sense of unease; a gnawing “mother’s instinct” that was threatening to build into an all out state of panic.

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A New Year

This time last year, my husband was standing on a rocky beach in White Rock, waiting to dash into the freezing Pacific Ocean for an annual “Polar Bear Swim.” My family and I stood a few feet away from a swimsuit clad crowd who were busy dancing around, trying to stay warm while waiting for the signal to dive in. A horn sounded without warning and confusion reigned as towels and sweatpants were tossed aside. Leading the way was a tall, red headed, Swede (he prefers to be called Viking Warrior). A couple hundred thrill seekers splashed in after him, paramedics on the standby, and my family giggled from the warmth of our winter coats as everyone scrambled to get back out of the ocean.

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Holiday Shrimp Dip

Every year, for as far back as I can remember, we’ve spent Christmas Eve at my grandparents home. While I thoroughly enjoyed stuffing myself with baby onions, mini pickles and tiny quiches, the highlight of the evening was always Grandad’s Shrimp Dip. Upon arriving at my grandparents house, I’d kick my shoes off and race – socks slipping and hair flying – into the living room, where a glass bowl heaped with dip sat on the coffee table. I would dig through the bowl for shrimp and shove salty, dip laden chips into my little mouth as fast as I could.

Grandad

This year, our tiny apartment was the place of honour for the Smith family Christmas Eve gathering. Sadly, Grandad passed a couple days before Christmas, which makes me all the more thankful for holiday traditions that are passed from one generation to the next. I will proudly carry on the shrimp dip tradition and, in the process, share this delectable recipe with you.

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