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And I think it`s gonna be a long, long time

We`re just back from Road Trip 2013 which took us to the Okanagan, Washington and Oregon for two amazing weeks. I`ve got a ton (ie about 400) of pictures to sort through and organize into posts but I`ll start with this one…………

We had planned to go to this amazing indoor water park in McMinnville, Oregon that is in an airplane hangar and has a decommissioned 747 on the roof. You climb all these stairs to get into the plane where the emergency exits are water slides!!! Genius! So fun. So, so fun. But when I say planned, I mean that we decided we would go there, an hours drive from Portland. We didn`t actually plan anything which left us having to stop at Wal-Mart to buy towels and then, finally, we pulled into the parking lot of the water park. The completely empty parking lot. Worst. It is the worst telling your 3-year-old that the water park that you`ve been psyching him up for for weeks, is closed. Brutal. I`m not sure who was more disappointed, him or us. It was an equal bummer all around. But since we were there, we decided to part with $60 and tour the aviation and space museums (oh, we skipped the Firearms and Ammunition Hall wherein one must pass underneath a giant sign that has a long, ridiculous quote from Charlton Heston. Gag.). The museums were actually pretty rad (note: if my parents had brought me to this kind of thing on a family trip I would NOT have thought it was rad. I would have complained at every step and sulked, and stomped and told them they were the lamest, etc, etc. We decided that we can not deprive Thomas a childhood without these moments.) and we spent a great deal of time ferociously competing  playing on flight simulators where you had to try and dock your space craft to the docking station. Some people crashed and burned (Thomas and Andrew), while others were told that they did an excellent job and were subsequently asked to submit their resumes to NASA. For days afterward, Thomas asked me to sing Rocket Man over and over again (sorry to all those passersby who had to be subject to that). Then, today, I played it for him and in probably one of his top 5 cutest moments, he grabbed my hand with his cute little chubby toddler hand and said, “Mum, do you want to dance wiv me?”. You can`t invent this stuff – little kids are the best.

Why not listen to the song and imagine the cuteness while looking at some pictures of our day? Just press play on the vid and then scroll down….. (I don`t think this works if you view on your phone)

He may have failed the height requirement part of NASA`s tests but he would otherwise have totally been asked to be an astronaut

He may have failed the height requirement part of NASA`s tests but he would otherwise have totally been asked to be an astronaut (note Andrew`s thumb to the right), as per usual)

Competitive space craft docking

Competitive space craft docking

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october 2103 084

october 2103 085

The Spruce Goose (google it). Pretty cool. I have included a pre-schooler in the picture so that you get a sense of the scale. Its a billion times larger than a pre-schooler.

The Spruce Goose (google it). Pretty cool. I have included a pre-schooler in the picture (look closely) so that you get a sense of the scale. It’s a billion times larger than a pre-schooler.

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(Not Responding)……….

Oh my word. How long has it been? It`s been ages. AGES. My lack of posting has not been due to a lack of things to write about or pictures to show, it has been the result of an epic battle with my ailing computer. If I never see the phrase (not responding) one more time, it will be too soon. Oh, I`ve tried posting, believe me, I`ve tried. I try to upload photos from my good camera, and 45 minutes later, maybe 1 of 20 photos has actually made it onto the computer, then it freezes, then it shuts down on its own and then it laughs maniacally at me, I swear it does.

This morning it has decided to play nice so I have managed to get some pictures uploaded from my iphone.

We`ve been loving the exceptionally sunny days here in VanCity and have spent countless hours at the beach and outside pools. T has been doing a lot of al fresco beach play, stating “I like the feeling of the sand on my bum.” Not the air on his bum, the sand. It seems like every couple of days he picks up a new word that he has to try out until he gets it right – a few of my faves:

Barely

Thomas (looking wistfully out the car window): When we were in Ontario, Hank barely even said a word to me.*

*note, Hank is our friends`pre-verbal baby. I pointed out that Hank didn`t know how to talk yet, so not to take it personally, but he was barely listening.

Situation

Many, many sentences of late have begun with Guys, this is the situation……… The “situation” often involves needing some sort of rare treat (ice cream, a new toy, a kinder surprise egg, etc) but I think that he feels that by turning it into a “situation” there is more gravity to the request. It rarely works, unless I want ice cream too and then the situation is that we head to Granville Island for gelato.

Awfully

This one is taking some work because he uses it in place of actually and also. I am awfully a Transformer Rescue Bot, not a little kid mom. I would awfully like to have some ice cream with these vegetables. (Thomas, I am awfully sorry, but those vegetables will have to be eaten first).

There have been many more, but before this computer turns on me, I will get this posted…………….


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The view from up here

While on our visit home I promised Thomas we would go to the CN Tower. As soon as the words were out of my mouth I immediately regretted them because I fast realized that just going and looking at the tower, safely from the ground, would somehow not be enough. We were going to have to go up it. And I am terrified of heights. Now, I will be honest and say that there have been times that I`ve been able to get away with not doing something, for example going to the Capilano Suspension Bridge, by pretending that there is a sign that says that its closed that day (a trick that I obviously picked up from my dad who admitted to me some years ago that when I was little and I wanted to go to a nearby park and he didn`t, we would leave the house and he would pretend to peer into the distance and would say “Oh dear! The big kids are on all the swings! Oh, nevermind. We`ll go another time.” Truth was, you couldn`t actually see the park from where we were. So mean)

Anyway, I knew that this was something that we really should do so I gathered my courage and headed for the elevators before I could back out. I planned on also holding my breath to stop myself from bursting out in nervous, hysterical laughter, but then the announcer said the ride up would take close to two minutes BECAUSE OF THE HIGH WINDS (ahhhhhhhh!). I was trying really hard to pretend that I was loving the whole thing and pinned this terrible forced grin on my face. I think I was pretty successful…….

Thomas: Mum! Look! Look down to the ground! We`re SOOOOO high up! Look!

Me: Oh, I am! I am! Yes, very high! Very high indeed! What fun!

Thomas: No, really look!

Me: I am!

Thomas: But you`ve had your eyes closed all the time. How can you see?

Me: I just can, alright. Just look out the window.

All fun and excitement from the ground

All fun and excitement from the ground

So, you`re sure you don`t want to just see it from this parking lot?

So, you`re sure you don`t want to just see it from this parking lot?

gulp!

gulp!

Okay, that`s it! You`ve seen the tower! Let`s go home! What? UP the tower? Errr....well.....

Okay, that`s it! You`ve seen the tower! Let`s go home! What? UP the tower? Errr….well…..

Hello CBC!

Hello CBC!

Hello massive hail storm blowing in off the lake and blowing RIGHT OVER US

Hello massive hail storm blowing in off the lake and blowing RIGHT OVER US

Pretty spectacular and worth all the anxiety

Pretty spectacular and worth all the anxiety


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E. I. E. I. O

Andrew has this habit of chalking things up to “being a farm boy at heart” because he “grew up on the prairies” in Saskatchewan. The reality is that he grew up in one of the biggest cities there (maybe the biggest city? the capital city? errrgh, I didn`t really pay attention in geography), Regina, and he pretty much saw the inside of a farm on grade school field trips and spent the remainder of his youth playing video games and hanging out at Manchu Wok in the mall like all other, non-agrarian, Canadian kids. Thomas will have just as much right to the phrase “farm boy at heart” as his father after his three hour adventure to Riverdale Farm in Toronto this past weekend. I sense that this would be Andrew`s kind of farm, smack dab in the middle of a big city with a Starbuck`s within walking distance. Seriously though, it was this amazing space in Cabbagetown that made you feel like you were`t in the city and we had such a great day there. And here`s a whole lotta pictures to prove it!

The windmill. Clearly.

The windmill. Clearly.

Chickery Dickery Doc.

Chickery Dickery Doc.

A very mean Turkey. I`m glad there was a fence between us and his beady little eyes

A very mean Turkey. I`m glad there was a fence between us and his beady little eyes

farm 5farm 25

farm 15

 

 

Jemimah Puddleduck and friends

Jemimah Puddleduck and friends

farm 6farm 24farm 21farm 22farm 20farm 27

This was the cutest thing ever: the mama would stick her head through this gap and call to her kids........

This was the cutest thing ever: the mama would stick her head through this gap and call to her kids……..

.....who would come over all "What mom? I`m busy"

…..who would come over all “What mom? I`m busy”

farm 9

We were getting the real stink eye from this cow.

We were getting the real stink eye from this cow.

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If Henry had his way, he would have been in the pen with the goats

If Henry had his way, he would have been in the pen with the goats

Mendin`fences

Mendin`fences

Being wistful

Being wistful

I liked this little creature the best. We were allowed to pet him and feed him. We took this one home.

I liked this little creature the best. We were allowed to pet him and feed him. We took this one home.

What a fun Mother`s Day.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


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March Madness

Was March only 4 days long this year? It feels like it was. It was a total blur of final papers, final assignments and final exams that happened to coincide with the most amazing spring weather that Vancouver has seen in a good long while, making final papers, final assignments and final exams super hard to concentrate on. But………it`s done! School is over (*high five*)! No more homework, no more books, blah, blah, blah. I am now, officially able to tend to all your trauma needs. I might make myself a giant pin that says ASK ME ABOUT SEPSIS because I know more about it, down to what is happening to your every cell, than I ever planned on knowing. I was happy knowing all about hearts for my 4 years in cardiology but am looking forward to considering some other organs in the ER.

I did manage to sneak in a few sunny hours in the fresh air with the kidlet before my final exam. Here`s proof.

We started with a little side walk chalkin`which involved the creation of an elaborate, if utterly confusing, city for a tiny garbage truck to travel around, doing it`s thing…..

City Planner Numero Uno

City Planner Numero Uno

The first thing he drew was a coffee shop. Hmmm, where does he get the idea that everyone needs coffee before they start work?

The first thing he drew was a coffee shop. Hmmm, where does he get the idea that everyone needs coffee before they start work?

Now get to work!

Now get to work!

sidewalk chalk 1 (6)sidewalk chalk 1 (1)

My plans to “go all out” with Easter decorating began and ended with this……

Bun Bun. This was about all the creative energy I could muster.

Bun Bun. This was about all the creative energy I could muster.

This cool and stylishly leaning child was enamoured of Bun Bun though so my meagre efforts were worth it.

This cool and stylishly leaning child was enamoured of Bun Bun though so my meagre efforts were worth it.

Just before Easter weekend, my sister and my niece and nephew arrived from Arizona. Thomas hasn`t seen his Aunty Lizzie and his cousins since he was a teeny babe so, understandably, he was super excited and super curious about them. We sat, in giddy anticipation, watching the big screen that shows people coming out of the luggage area before they come out to the arrivals area. For an entire Air Canada flight from Hong Kong, he asked “Is THAT my cousins??!?!?!?!” about EVERY. SINGLE. PASSENGER. “No, Thomas, that is two little old women. Your cousins are two kids, with red hair.” He would promptly forget my description when the next passenger came through, and so it went. After a while he just started yelling “COUSINS!!!!!” randomly, until at last the right little red heads came running. Amazing! I love airports.

They brought some seriously nice sun with them from Arizona and while I holed up in a coffee shop studying, they all had a sweet day at the beach.

Ta-da!

Ta-da!

Cousin!

Cousin!

New buddies!

New buddies!

and the park…..

Concentrating hard on a giant hole that needed digging.

Concentrating hard on a giant hole that needed digging.

park (3)

Just swangin`

Just swangin`

park (1)

park (4)

If the amount of fun they had in their first few days corresponds to the amount of sand they brought home in their collective shoes, then I would say they had a, literal, mountain of fun.

We made use of Thomas`s bunk beds while the fam was visiting which meant a lot of early mornings that started with a little head popping up over the foot of the top bunk……..

Mama? Mama? Mommy? Moooommmmmy? Mom? Mommy? Are you awake? Mama? Mommy? Mom?

Mom? Mom? Mom? Mom? Mom? Mom? Are you awake? Mom? Mom? Mom?

More of Cousin Week 2013 to come!


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Sleepless in Seattle

This past weekend we headed off to rainy seattle so Andrew could collect on his early birthday present of tickets to see the Patriots play the Seahawks. Thankfully, it was easy to find someone to take the second ticket, leaving Kirstie and I free to hang out in seattle with Thomas and baby Georgia on the Sunday.

We left Vancouver in driving sheets of rain and a nagging feeling in the pit of my stomache at the thought of being trapped in a small hotel room, trying to entertain two toddlers (I mean Thomas and Georgia, not Thomas and Andrew) while Dusty and Andrew were at the game on Sunday. Luckily, as we drove into Seattle, the rain had settled down to a mist and some blue sky was making its way through the clouds.

I had booked our hotel at the very last minute, as usual, and in doing so had missed out on some of the finer details of the reservation. Such as the bed size. Twin beds are double beds, right? Same thing? No? Errrr. No problem, I thought, that’s what cots are for. I feel like the desk clerk was secretly laughing at me when she mentioned that no, they didn’t have any cots available for the night but even if they did, a cot wouldn’t fit in our room. Oh dear. What had I booked us into? I had initially pictured a nice Victorian style Inn, but now I was picturing something out of the Borrowers (those tiny little people who slept in things like walnut shells lined with cotton balls). After parking our car two blocks away and carrying all our things up a completely vertical hill that really should have been equipped with a funicular, we were pleasantly surprised to find a room much larger than the  bread box I was imagining. How big were the cots in this hotel if they couldn’t fit in the room???

Ahhhhhhhh, I happily sighed! Vacation! A nice little break from work! I threw back the curtains to take in the view………………………we were ten feet away from a hospital and our `view`was directly into patient rooms. After watching an elderly woman get an ECG, a nurse empty a commode and a large man being prepared for a bed bath, I drew the curtains. What`s on TV?

We headed out to meet Kirsty, Dusty and Georgia and had a fun afternoon walking around Seattle and stopping for afternoon cervesas at a great little spot.

The very smart server, noticing Thomas starting to get antsy, gave him a huge box of corks to play with as building blocks, smart guy.

He did not want a photo of him building anything though. He is protective of his intellectual property, I guess.

On the way back to the hotel we stopped to buy a blow up mattress for T to sleep on and he was thrilled to find one with a Cars sleeping bag attached. While fun to look at, the sleeping bag / fitted sheet combo was made out of that super shiny and slippery material they make cheap kids sleeping bags out of and the end result was that he slid off the bed several times in the night and spent most of it under one of our beds until we woke up and pulled him back onto his bed. He didn’t seem bothered.

Game day sunday was a rainy one so Kirsty and I took the kids to the Seattle Children`s Museum. Thomas was immediately excited about the giant pumpkin at the entrance (Mom! I NEED to hug this guy)

and spent much of the first half hour squealing “Look at this Baby Georgia”. She replied with screams of her own and they seemed to have a grand time of things. Two hours in a children’s museum reasserted my belief that I could never have been a grade school teacher. It is exhausting being around that amount of energy. We needed coffee so headed back to hotel for a break and to wait for The Dads.

In the belly of the whale

In the blowhole of the whale?

Arrrrrrrrrrrr!

Georgia was not convinced when Thomas told her he was taking her to sea.

Thomas seemed super excited to see this motorcycle yet that emotion really doesnt come across in this photo where he seems totally bored.

There were some weird exhibits. Like this random tent.

No one was taking this bee away from Georgia. NO ONE.

sssssssssssssssssssssssssssss!

The Dads came back soaking wet but had fun at the game (Dusty more so as the Seahawks pulled off a win).  All in all, a fun little break from Vancouver!