Friday, November 23, 2012

Pinata, Ghosts, Mummies...and Grandparents.

 I went a little crazy with Halloween this year - I'm not sure what got into me, but I think I was inspired by a special Halloween-themed magazine that had so many adorable ideas, I wanted to try them out.  I also made the mistake of saying, "Hm, maybe we should have a Halloween party" in the company of my 5-year old, so at that point, I was committed.  Anyway, here is a small sample of my crafty-ness:

 "Ghost Mashed Potatoes:
 "Witches Brooms cookies and Monster fruit"
 "Mummy juice"
 "Zombie Fingers" (PB+J sandwiches)

 I think I'm most proud of the Bat Pinata I made - it took 6 days to make it! We had about 22 kids at the party, so, unfortunately, they didn't all get a chance to whack the bat since Callum gave it the final bash.

I transformed the downstairs playroom into a "Spooky Room".  I had my nephews help out by playing certain parts.  First there was the Potions master (jars filled with beans, coloured water, plastic toy insects, and a 'cauldron' with a 'potion' to taste-test which was a pot filled with sherbet and pop).  Then there was a "Pet Cemetery" (boxes painted black with stuffed animals lying inside and tombstones covered in webs and spiders) and the Autopsy room (a "dead body' was stuffed clothes covered with a white sheet, bowls of plastic eyeballs and a plastic heart, and of course, brains made of spaghetti in red jello).  Lastly, we had a big box where "Dracula" jumped out.  I can't say there were any screams by any kids, but I did try to make it friendly to 3-year olds (although it still took a lot of convincing to get Max in there, despite the fact that he helped to decorate the whole thing!).  I was so busy at the party, I didn't get to photograph it all, but my brother got a couple pics.

Simon didn't want to put on his Yoda costume until everyone started smiling and paying attention to him, then he loved wearing it!
 The party was the Saturday before Halloween, so Callum and Max went out on the 31st with our neighbours again, Matteus, Annika and Teddy. (Callum was Obi-wan Kenobi, and Max was Darth Vader, of course).
Shortly after all the Halloween decorations were put away, Jeff's parents, Larry and Inge,  came for a week-long visit.  The boys loved having them stay with us and it was nice to spend time with them.
One day we took them on the ferry over to Gibsons, to show them Kim and Sven's place and have dinner at Molly's Reach (I guess Larry was a Beachcombers fan back in the day!).

We celebrated Inge's birthday while they were here too.

And Inge shared her cake with Simon:

And here are a couple random shots of 2 cute little boys I found in my shower:

Thursday, October 18, 2012

Brag for a moment.

I have to get this down...

It is Tuesday evening and Callum, Max and friend Teddy are in the backyard having races, running in a big circle around the yard.  Kelli opens the kitchen window so she could hear them in case of any argument that needed intervention.  Kelli looks up once to see Teddy beating Callum at a race, looks up a little later to see all of them racing backwards. The next time she looks up, Kelli sees Max running with all his effort a few feet ahead of a jogging Callum, who was kind of huffing and puffing while saying, "Oh Max, I can't catch up, you're too fast!".  Kelli's eyebrows raise and she stands in amazement, staring at her eldest son. Kelli watches as Max smiles from his triumphant race and Callum gives him a High-five.

Can a mother ask for a more awesome moment?  Can a mother witness anything more satisfying and rewarding than that? Well, I dunno, but it sure helps make up for a lot of the other crap that a mother puts up with, I can tell you that.

Sunday, October 14, 2012

I'm a proud Mum.

 Callum has adapted to Kindergarten rather smoothly and has already learned quite a bit of French.  He is a such a sponge for information and is actually quite a keener and eager to please his teachers, Mme Paulus and Mme Sproule.  He is in one of three Kindergarten classes at Laronde and has made a few new friends.  During September, we tried to ride his bike to school most days, (he rides his bike while I ride my bike pulling Simon in the trailer and Max in the bike seat behind me), but now that the rain has started, I foresee a reduction in days of riding.  Callum gets up like clockwork every morning between 6-6:30am, so our mornings are actually calm and generally pleasant.  There are some mornings that he gets up before me and when I hear Simon wake up, Callum goes in to his room before me and I lie there listening to them play as Callum makes Simon laugh and giggle for up to 20 minutes before he comes to get me.

One of the activities his school participated in was the annual Terry Fox run, and the kindergarteners basically ran around the field in a circle for 20 minutes, though the circle managed to get smaller and smaller until it was more of a mosh pit.

We don't have Callum registered in any extra-curricular activities right now, since we were advised to let him get used to 6-hour days at school first.  Jeff and I had already asked him to choose between soccer and skiing, since we knew that Saturdays would likely be game-days when we would otherwise be skiing.  He chose skiing, so Jeff was satisfied, though I still think he needs some kind of team sport participation.  

Max's experience in Preschool thus far has been fairly positive, though he seemed unimpressed with singing the "Shake the Apple Tree" song during his first performance.

Max is just so darn cute right now - he is at at that cuddly, cute, entertaining age where everything he says just sounds adorable.  He has a bit of a temper too, though, that shows itself when his pants won't go on easily or he can't get the pancake on his fork.  I'm not sure if I've ever mentioned Max's un-affection for most animals.  When my brother had a cat, Max didn't want to go over there without holding my hand, or when we are riding our bikes and a dog comes up from behind, he will scream, or when I bought a groupon for 2 Equestrian lessons, he would have nothing to do with getting close to the horse.  I'm not sure what triggered Max's fear, but it affects him in other ways sometimes too, like freaking out when getting stuck in a tight space or refusing to go down the store aisle of certain Halloween decorations.  These fears kind of endear him to me even more, for some reason.

 Before the rain started, we got quite a few days at various parks, even with Jeff a few times (and our neighbour, Teddy)


Of course, we celebrated Simon's 1st Birthday with a little party.  He had been standing up on his own for longer and longer periods of time and even showed off a few steps on his birthday.  


 Since then, Simon has gotten better and better at his walking skills.  For a while, he would take a few steps and just lose patience since his crawling was so much faster, but he seems to have begun to prefer walking now.  Simon's personality is developing into a clever and a bit mischievous little boy, no longer just a baby.  He likes to pull open drawers and the dishwasher, hiding things in them and I even caught him shoving a toy car and apple pieces (and whatever else he could find) into the floor vent after he pulled off the vent grill. He doesn't seem to understand why he can't have yogurt and bananas for every meal and snack, to the point that I have sometimes hidden the bananas so he doesn't see them and scream at me until I give in and give him one.  At 1 year old, he weighs in at nearly 30lbs (!), so I am getting some decent exercise carrying him around and as you watch him walk around in just a diaper you may instantly find yourself thinking of a mini Sumo wrestler.  He is now sleeping through the night without any bottles but wakes too often for soother-retrieval. 

Thursday, September 13, 2012

Views, Pie, Crab and Dress-Up.

 I have a view out my kitchen window that is generally used for observing my kids in the backyard, though I usually only look out when I hear crying, screaming or an inappropriate conversation, such as one that uses the word "penis" or "poo" too much.  On occasion, however, I look out and pause, then I smile because I see all of my children playing together, having fun and all getting along.  That's my favorite view.  

I love peach season because I love peach-blackberry pie! 

Someone in the church knew someone with a boat and crab traps, so  Jeff took Callum with the scouts out crabbing one Saturday.  Jeff told me that Callum didn't fare so well on the boat, coming home with vomit all over his clothes and life jacket!  Callum insists, however, that he had a good time when he wasn't puking.  What a trooper.  And we got to cook up 3 crabs for dinner - Mmmmmmm....

 September 4th was Callum's first day of Kindergarten!  It was only 20 minutes that day (due to the rather annoying gradual-entry schedule), but an important day none the less.

 Max had his first day of Preschool the next week.  He has been waiting this for a long time, so I was surprised he wasn't more excited.  He said he had a good time, though.

I have substituted in Nursery at church a few times and it can be fun hanging with Max and Simon in there.  He really likes to dress up.

Jeff's work bought tickets to the Surrey Mayor's Charity Gala Black-tie event,  so Jeff and I got to get all dressed up.