Monday, August 18, 2008

Happy Surprise

A couple of days ago, I got a call from my college friend, Yuriko, who lives in Tokyo. She is visiting Canada for a couple weeks (she lived in Toronto for ten years before moving back to Japan when she married last summer) and wondered if we could get together. So this afternoon, we met at Metrotown, had lunch and visited the dollar store together (some joys are international!). It was so good to see my old friend again - she is such a sweet, loving soul and it was an unexpected blessing in my summer. I am so thankful for the life-long friends I made at Houghton College - they are worth every penny I'm repaying in student loans... yes, indeed, that makes them worth a LOT, haha!

Jolie and I are finding ourselves tremendously distracted by the Olympics, especially the gymnastics and the triathalon... Simon Whitfield pulled off an amazing comeback to win silver... us girls were screaming and cheering him on the last couple minutes of the race. I was beginning to worry that we weren't going to win any medals, but I think that as Canadians we truly celebrate each one we win.

Thursday, August 14, 2008

Summer is Speeding Away...

Just over two weeks until school starts up again... I can't believe how fast the summer is going. But I'll be honest, it will be nice to have a break from the kids, and by kids, I mean Layni. I tell you, she's a million times more high-maintenance than Lysa! But we have had some good times this summer...

Today, I took the girls swimming. I was so mad at myself because we got over to the pool, paid, and were in the changing room when I realized I'd forgotten Lysa's bathing suit at home... AGGHHH!!! So we had to walk all the way home and back again in the heat, causing a 45 minute detour. Once we finally got into the pool though, we enjoyed the wave pool and waterslide tremendously for a couple hours.

Layni and I went to my first football game last Friday (she had been once before with Jolie, Marty and Mattias). I know absolutely nothing about football and understand it no better now, but still enjoyed the live experience. We were seven rows up from the field, so it seemed so small to me in real life as compared to seeing it on television... and slow! It took almost four hours for an actual hour of play! The BC Lions beat Edmonton but my favourite part was watching the crazy fans, listening to the non-stop commentary of the guy behind us (which Layni found annoying, but I found amusing), enjoying the ridiculous antics of various mascots playing soccer during half-time, and munching on popcorn. But even I found myself at times yelling, "Come on, come on, COME ON!" when they were making a pivotal play. Layni's favourite part was doing the wave... it's the little things that we enjoy the most!

Jolie's parents came to visit for the weekend. We went for a long walk to Colony Farm Park on Saturday, admiring the community gardens there (I smelled the sweetest rose there - it reminded me of the most delicious pink lemonade; roses aren't my favourite flowers, but that rose was queen of all roses!) and walking the trails. We came home tired and hungry. While we were busy fixing supper, the kids were playing in the living room. Layni comes into the kitchen, crying and freaking out, "I'M SO SORRY! IT WAS AN ACCIDENT!!!" She and Mattias had shattered one of our glass patio doors. Awesome. In all fairness, there must have been a crack or some weakness in the glass already, because all they did was bump it with the corner of Mattias' little plastic toybox... believe me, they've done far worse other times! However, there goes $500 out the window... incredibly frustrating.

Another day, we went for a walk in Mundy Park. Jolie was busy pointing out different plants and trees to Layni and Mattias while I kept Lysa happy by actually walking, instead of stopping every few steps to explore. But my one weakness is hollow tree stumps - I always have to stop and investigate those. So Layni and I poked our heads into one and laughed ourselves silly. There in this hollow tree stump in the middle of Mundy Park, were Jonas Brothers Teen Beat posters hung up inside! We debated whether it was the squirrels or raccoons who were fans. It was just so bizarre! Later, Jolie and I wondered about the people who make the effort to scoop up their dogs' poop and put it in the green plastic bag... and then throw it into the woods! We saw dozens of these poop bags littering this beautiful park - people are so stupid.

Yesterday, Lysa and I had a playdate with a couple of delightful little friends. Usually, Layni is the one who gets to go on all the playdates, but she had Tae Kwon Do yesterday, so Lysa was the lucky one this time. I must admit, I was apprehensive about it. I know how fun and funny and wonderful Lysa is, but in new places with new people, she tends to initially freak out, which freaks a lot of people out and they don't take the time to get to know her in all her goofy glory. But these kids were wonderful... completely accepting her as she was and looking out for her and including her in their games and jokes. Really sweet, fantastic kids. We all had a great time!

I just finished my favourite Lucy Maud Montgomery novel today, The Blue Castle - for the millionth time. My ideal romance... even if the hero's name is Barney :)

Well, those are some of our recent adventures. We're all healthy at the moment, enjoying the sunshine and lazy days, though occasionally getting on each other's nerves! But I am looking forward to being in my childhood bedroom in New Brunswick in six weeks' time, catching up with my mom, visiting friends and family, dollar stores and Frenchy's! I miss my East Coast folks and can't wait to catch up for another year.

Wednesday, August 06, 2008

Wanted: Primitive Technology

Does anybody have any old cassette tapes lying around the house, especially children's ones? (Sesame Street and Muppets are my personal faves!) Lysa brought home a Powerlink device from school which enables us to plug in the blender, CD player etc. and she can turn them on and off by smacking a big red button. Unfortunately, for whatever reason, it doesn't work with CDs, only tapes... which gave me the opportunity to explain to Mattias what this strange looking thing called a cassette tape is - it makes music! Wow! The look of wonder and disbelief on his face made me feel very, very old :) So if you have any old tapes lying around (preferably not heavy metal), we would love to listen to something other than the five she's been playing over and over and over and over again. (Though Big Bird's Greatest Hits IS awesome! I'm also really enjoying Sharon, Lois and Bram's Dance Tunes.)