Tuesday, May 15, 2018

Vancouver Island glows on Mother’s Day – the flowers are blooming, it’s almost always warm and sunny, the trees and grasses are at their greenest, everyone has tidied their lawns and the weeds haven’t yet taken over.  And so it was this year.  We puttered about, planting things here and there, chatting with the hens, sipping cider (me, not the kids), bouncing the moonball on the street and throwing a few hoops at the park.  Logan and Everest spray painted planes on Saturday and Everest’s parents drove them out to the airfield on Sunday for a test flight with a trainer.  Logan made me a Mother’s Day breakfast and some “lazy day certificates” and Danika crafted cards and a napkin holder and a manicure coupon at her personal salon.  It’s the first year in a while that I didn’t have new hand crafted jewelry to wear to work on Monday morning… perhaps my days of gold painted clay pendants have come to an end…! 

Friday, May 11, 2018

A Danika story – Danika asked Daniel where he was going last night as he was running out to the beer/wine store on the corner to pick up a few cans of beer for the fridge.  When he said he was going to get beer, she nodded her head and remarked “Oh, so that’s why he’s wearing his liquor shirt”. He was indeed wearing a t-shirt that said LI-COR – Impacting Lives Through Science. The company pronounces their name “LIE-KOR”, but it could just as easily be pronounced the same as liquor.  Of course Daniel loved the story and you know exactly what shirt he’s going to be wearing the next time he goes for drinks after work with his science buddies!

Last weekend was fairly quiet – Danika didn’t feel great so she laid low, rousing herself to make a batch of meringues and watch Mama Mia yet again.  Logan spent much of his time engrossed in the world of remote control vehicles.  His room right now looks like a tornado ripped through a hobby store but we’re trying to be supportive and crossing our fingers the house doesn’t burn down around us (truthfully though, I’ve never seen the soldering irons or heat gun left plugged in). He and Everest have been spending time in Stewart’s workshop as well, as he generously shares his time and expertise and extra parts to help them build/repair the various planes they’ve bought or been gifted by other members of the club. One of the gifts was a model steam engine that he’s going to take to school on Monday to demonstrate to his class – an advanced sort of show and tell.  One of the photos above is the back of Logan as he tuned up his violin with the rest of the grade 6 strings class for an adjudicated performance last week.  I accompanied the middle school strings program as a chaperone for the afternoon, sitting in the back of the school bus with the rowdy kids. By comparison, Logan is almost an angel - I've been trying to remind myself that behavior is relative.  As I watched him interact politely but confidently with the older men who comprise the RC flying club at their recent monthly meeting, I marveled at this boy who not so many years ago wanted me to stay close at birthday parties. A little solder on his floor mat is surely a small price to pay for the self-confidence this hobby seems to be building. 

Tuesday, April 24, 2018

Danika's pack of Perler Puppies

Danika and Tiny
It's been a couple of weeks since I wrote...a recap of what we've been up to will show it's been the busy humdrum of the day to day.  Scouts and Guides have been busy - it's the spring cookie campaign and there are still a number of boxes that need to be sold (Grandpa, there are 2 put away with your name on them - you owe $10). Both of the kids had a camp last weekend, at the same time!! Which meant Daniel and I drank wine and watched movies, including a Saturday date night.  Spring arrived suddenly this week - I mowed the grass and have started planting a few things here and there in the garden, much to the chickens' chagrin as they are now locked out lest they dig up everything I put in.  I've been going to a pilates class on Tuesday evenings, building up my superhero strength - or at least improving core stability.  The badminton rackets have been dug out and there are games in the backyard or on the street in the evenings again.  The glue gun has been getting a work out - Danika uses it often in her crafting (most recently for 3-D perler bead creations, as well as decorating a journal cover) and Logan and Nathan have been using it to glue together pieces of various gadgets they've been trying to make, things that are probably safest if they don't actually ever work.   

Saturday, April 07, 2018

Spring break is now but a memory....a lovely one.  Bob and Huguette have flown back to Quebec and the kids have returned to school. Before they left, we spent a gorgeous weekend in Ucluelet and Tofino.  We rented a van and drove out on Good Friday, to a palatial west coast condo we rented on the waterfront in Ucluelet.  Although the temperatures were brisk, the sun was bright and the views were incredible.  We walked around Tofino and stopped on Long Beach to see the waves and the surfers - the wind was almost strong enough to blow Danika away though, so we didn't stay long.  The Easter Bunny made an appearance, finding the hats the kids hid in the washer/dryer and hiding eggs.  Since a lot of the  chocolate is off limits for Danika, a special bunny stuffy had stowed away in Huguette's suitcase.  On our way back to the city, we stopped in Cathedral Grove for a peek at the giant cedars and then headed for home.  Despite Danika and I having had a bit of a flu bug (thankfully we didn't share it with anyone else), it was a fabulous getaway.

Saturday, March 24, 2018

The kids have relaxed their way through the first week of spring break - one more week to go. Logan has spent a great deal of his time flying a practice plane at a nearby school with very large fields.  When he's not flying, he's learning more about flying.  There was also some repairing, since he and Everest crashed the "flying wing" they borrowed from their mentor - it appears to be almost as good as new after some glue and tape. Danika has been dabbling in various crafts.  And of course Bob and Huguette are here, which is lovely. The Governor General was visiting Victoria on Tuesday and Logan's Scout troop was invited to be part of the receiving line.  While he was busy with that, the rest of us enjoyed a movie about hurricanes at Imax (I knew there was a reason I don't live in a hurricane zone).  There was also a trip to Mr. Tubb's arcade where the kids burned through some quarters.  It's been bright and sunny this week, almost time to pull out the lawn mower, maybe a job for tomorrow... 

Sunday, March 11, 2018

Danika has been lobbying VERY hard for a dog these days.  When she began asking (pleading) 2 years ago, we put her off and bought her a hamster instead, thinking it was a passing interest.  It wasn't.  She's been spending all of her free time researching breeds that would meet our many needs (hypoallergenic, low shedding, good companion, good with small animals and children, etc) and could star in a debate team with her many points on why a dog is a good choice for us.  She asks what we (not just her) would love about having a dog, trying to get all of us invested in the idea.  So we've agreed to revisit the issue in a year's time, when she is ending elementary school and will be home sooner in the day. In the meantime, I took Danika and two of her friends to the SPCA yesterday to look at the various types of animals - sadly, most of the dogs were large breeds that people found they were unable to handle. A pit bull cross is not the dog for us either! We ended the afternoon with a tea party at a playground, because 9 year old girls still like to swing. On the drive home, Danika explained to me that a dog would be even better than Teddy.  No offense to Teddy, and she will still love Teddy, it's just that she will love a dog differently, because even though she keeps hoping Teddy will come alive, unlike when she was younger she knows now that's impossible.
Spring is coming!

Monday, March 05, 2018

More goecaching yesterday, this time on Mt. Tolmie.  We were on a roll.  Now only 197 to go. 
And  although there are no photos, I can confirm the Guide trip was fun.  They watched movies on the bus. They played games. They played in the snow and built toboggan runs.  They went snowshoeing and snowtubing.  Unfortunately an errant piece of straw on the tube hill poked Danika's eye shortly before coming home, but the optometrist prescribed some eye drops to prevent infection and said she'd be good as new shortly.