Wednesday, May 31, 2006

Candy Swap 2006 Questionairre

* Candy Swap 2006 Questionnaire
1) When I was a kid, Halloween was all about:
a) collecting as much candy as I could
b) collecting candy to eat as I go
c) sharing with my siblings
d) Who cares about candy? I was too busy egging my teacher's car.
e) Halloween was forbidden in my house and I've never gotten over it. Bring it on!

2) What is more important to you: quality, or quantity? Quality

3) If you were on a desert island (haha, I wrote "dessert island" but that would be a totally different question now wouldn't it?) and could only have one sweet treat, which would it be? Skittles, I should honestly own shares in Skittles. They are just such perfect little bites of sweet and colour. And of course low-fat ;)

4) You arrive at "Dessert Island" – where you discover a river of pudding flowing freely through a swamp of Cool Whip. No one is watching. What do you do? Go for a skinny dip, after sampling the river of course. Chocolate is so good for the skin, I just wouldn't be able to resist.

4) Sweet, sour, or savoury? Sweet.

5) Sex or chocolate? Do I have to choose? Really? Both. There, Sex with Chocolate makes it all good.

6) What kind of candy, if any, would you turn down if someone offered? I am trying so hard to think of candy I would turn down. The only thing that comes close is “goodies” (I think that is what they are called) they look like pastel jelly beans, but taste like black licorice in the middle.

7) You're at the grocery store, you're children/husband/pets have been The.Worst.Ever. They're throwing cans at each other, tripping little old ladies, taking bites out of the produce and putting them back in the bins, and piercing the milk bags with diaper pins. You feel yourself getting woozy. That vein in your forehead is throbbing. You need an immediate sugar kick before you do something crazy. What do you reach for? A “Crunchie” Bar, sponge toffee and chocolate, makes it all better.

8) What are your feelings regarding Thrills gum, ribbon candy, scotch mints, and other "grandma candies"? Love them, they all remind me of my Grandma. And since I don’t have them often, they are such a treat that take me back to the corner store near her place in Montreal where we used to buy those candies.

9) How adventurous are you? Do spicy dried mealworms or candy-coated crickets give you the willies, or are you willing to try anything once? Whillies!! Please, candy shouldn’t have bug in it, it makes me sad just to think about it. But, if no bugs are in it, I am all for trying a new candy. I am always on the lookout for a new fave.

10) Do you have dentures or other dental issues? Do you have a good dental plan? I have all my own teeth and a great dental plan. I did lose a filling last fall biting into an organic hard candy, but it’s been fixed and all is well. And it was worth the loss of the filling, those candies were goooood. I should also add that I have this inability to suck on hard candies for very long, I must crunch them. Those giant jawbreakers are like pure torture for me, takes way too long to get to the soft part so I can crunch them.

The New Coffeeshop

You know you drink way too much Starbucks when the "Baristas" at the newest location all recognize you from different stores.

Barrhaven's new Starbucks, complete with Drive-thru, opened on Friday! Hooray! I was one of the first customers, sad but true. On Thursday the paving crew was still paving, but on Friday when the umbrellas were up on the patio, I had to drive through the drive-thru just to see if it was open. I was greeted by a sweet and friendly "Barista" from the Hazeldean store, who recognized me and my sleeping beauty in the back. I got my usual, Grande Chai, no-fat, extra-hot and a chocolate chip cookie for "J". In addition I was awarded a travel mug and a sandwich, just for going through the drive through.

I quickly called my Sister, who was eagerly awaiting the opening, like me. She drove over with her two in tow. She got her usual, frappucino of the day, complete with chocolate chip cookie and her freebies.

I stayed away for the weekend, not wanting to get too excited about the new store, but my Sister did not, she went with my Mom, with her Hubby, and called me Monday morning to see if I was ready for another trip. Sure enough, "J" and I packed up and headed out. As we sat chatting the "Baristas" started trying to figure out where they knew me from. One worked at Hunt Club, one at Indigo Barrhaven and one at Chapters Pinecrest, oh yes and the one from Hazeldean. Needless to say, they knew me from their stores. We had a good laugh and I promised to frequent the store often and bring my other Sisters when they were in town.

Is is wrong, that I love Starbucks so much? I feel bad that I used to be such a loyal Second Cup customer but, since they haven't opened anymore stores close to my home. And the fact that some of my last visits were not so appealing. I even went for Starbucks at the Calgary airport over Second Cup!! Perhaps Starbucks will come up with a frequent customer program that will help me with my addicition, I mean habit, I mean love of all things Starbucks.

Thank you for opening a store so close to my home, excuse me while I pack up "J" in the stroller and head out for a Chai.

Tuesday, May 30, 2006


Sing it with me...

P...P...P... on the potteeeee.
P...P...P... on the pottee.
If you go p p on the potteeeeee.
You're gonna get a "Veggie Tales Movie".

Since before we left for Regina we have been telling "J" that there would be no more diapers on our return. We waited until Saturday to put them away and spent the whole weekend washing clothes. "J" has sat on the pottee, but never managed to p. Except once and it scared him so much he wouldn't do it again. Yesterday, I used a diaper because he was up half the night with his heat stroke and I didn't want to stress him out while pushing the juice on him to rehydrate. Then, last night back to our special nighttime underwear (Kushies Trainers) and started in earnest this morning.

He woke up dry at 4:53am!!! And he wanted me up, so at 5:30am I got up and changed him into his underwear and started with the pushing to the pottee. He would sit, but nothing was a comin' out. He drank his cup of juice so I knew he was needing to go soon... I waited.... I waited some more. I got him on the pot and a few drips came out, so I cheered him on and he was able to get out a little squirt. He looked at me and asked, "Mommy, do I get my Veggie Tales now?" So, I said, "You bet you do, but the store doesn't open for a while so you have to keep on trying". I had to go for my shower and wanted to be sure he was empty so he got on the pot again, and well, he let it all go, singing his "P...P...P... song all the while".

We called all the necessary relatives and packed up for our trip to the special store that sells Veggie Tales. Where he proudly told all the girls at the cash that he went pottee this morning. "J" fell asleep in the car, clutching his Veggies, I can't wait for him to wake up and watch them. Now on to number 2 ;)

***correct spelling not used, just in case some strange google traffic should find us :)

Monday, May 29, 2006

What a weekend!

If only "J" and I did not have this mid-western cold. It sure slowed us down. It has been so long since I have had a cold that I forgot how much it can suck the life right out of you. My head is full and my voice still crackly, so I was taking more frequent rests this weekend than I should have.

We managed to get the pool up and running. We decided to get a bigger pool this year for more swimming enjoyment and fun. Four summers ago, we got one of those semi-inflatable pools. It was 12' around by 2.5' tall. It was the best $150 we ever spent. Especially the summer I was pregnant with "J". I just floated the last two months of my pregnancy away. We opted for a bigger (15'x4') steel frame design this year. We were able to catch one on sale. It took three of us (four if you count "J") and about three hours to put it all together. Then, it took two hoses and seven hours of running water to fill it. It was cold, but we went in anyway! "J" has a special suit with built in floatation in it, but he decided to sit it out on the ladder. Which is closer than he got all last summer. I imagine we will be having a summer full of swimming fun, I can hardly wait already.

In other news, it only took "J" until after lunch on Saturday to start going down the slide again. It is a very fast slide, but with a little coaching he was flying down in no time. Each time he is ready to go down he yells, "Look out below!". Something I thought would be good when "J2" is here with him and of course for the poor dogs who thought it would be fun to lie at the bottom of the slide.

We aparently over did it outside this weekend as "J" had some heat stroke last night. He wouldn't eat his supper and was quite shaky, sweaty for a bit. Then, well, he was sick... all over me... and he felt much better. He is back to his usual self this morning, eating his "Cheerios" and running around, so all is right in his world. I will have to remember that just because we can stay outside all day long, doesn't mean that "J" can, even with all the sunscreen, hats, juice, shade from the umbrella, etc....

Hope you all enjoyed such a wonderful weekend!

Friday, May 26, 2006

And... we're Home.

We arrived home very late on Wednesday night. We awoke on Thursday morning to the biggest playfort you have ever seen!!! Hubby worked on it all weekend, in the rain, and it is loved by "J" and "J2". However, on the second slide down "J2" did not see that his cousin was standing close to the bottom. As he got to the bottom of the slide he hit "J", whom then flipped foward sinking his rather sharp two front teeth into "J2"'s forehead. The blood was gushing, the tears were flowing, and two stitches later neither boy will go down the slide again. "J" keeps saying that it is too big for him. Well, in time I suppose.

Our plane ride home was rather uneventful, except that we did not have tv's again from Calgary to Ottawa. And "J" did not sleep despite the time of day/night. But, all in all he is a great traveller. He kept saying all the way home that he missed his cousins and Auntie, which of course would bring me to tears throughout our 7 1/4 hour trip home. The poor flight attendants, probobly thought something terrible had happened, but no, I was just missing my Sis already.

We brought the good weather with us (yes, you are all welcome) and some nasty colds. "J" had picked up his cousins cold the third day we were there, but I did not get it until we were on our way home. And of course today is even worse than yesterday, so we will be hanging out close to home for a bit, as we don't want to be sharing this nastiness with anybody.

So far, the hardest part about being home is that "J" now thinks we can hop on a plane anytime we want and go for a visit. And considering that we live right under the flight path, you can just imagine how many times he has asked to go back on the plane to play. Hopefully we will be able to go a little more often, but for now we have to wait for Christmas for another visit. Poor "J" doesn't realize that Christmas is a little more than a few days away.

Monday, May 22, 2006

Regina - Part Two

The weekend passed quickly and we are left with only two and a half days of our vacation. Hubby is missing us terribly at home and although we are missing him too, it is easier to be distracted with four kids and two adults trying to fill every waking moment with fun.

The kids are having a great time. With only minor disagreements, mostly due to tiredness and a cold they all have, they are all generally happy kidlets.

We attempted a movie day yesterday. We went to see "Over the Hedge". "J" faired better than his two older cousins. There is a moment with a bear that appears scarey, but is over quickly. "J" never watches a movie all the way through the first time anyway, so I was surprised that he made it through a whole hour. We will have to go back to watch the rest when we are back home, possibly with "J2". I am anxious to see the ending too! I will say that for the hour that I saw it was well done and quite cute.

We also went to Church yesterday. I was looking forward to seeing and attending my Sister's Church, but unfortunately my Sis had signed up for nursery duty and her first time was yesterday. So, I got to be her helper as the other lady didn't show up. We did get to attend the beginning worship with the band and "J" was dancing away as the band had quite a similar sound to "U2". It was also quite neat as many people were looking at me funny like, aren't you the Sister that used to live here? Me and my youngest sister are often mistaken for twins, only she is skinnier and has less wrinkles. Then there were the people that could hear my voice but not see me and thought I was my older sister. It was quite fun.

I haven't spent a full week with my Sister for many, many years and it is quite amazing to hear both of us together as not only do we sound almost exactly the same, but we say the same sayings, talk to our kids the same way and have pretty much the same laugh. It has been really cool to be here. Not sure what we have in store for this holiday Monday, but am sure that it will pack lots of fun and include some more tour of the city!

**note: tried to add more photos, but had no luck, hopefully tomorrow.

Saturday, May 20, 2006

Regina - Part One

When we left Ottawa on Wednesday, the temperature was 10 degrees (celcius) and the skies were grey, dreary and pouring rain. "J" was very excited to be going on an airplane. As I drank my first coffee of the morning, he stood watching the airline employees load up our plane with more coffee, juice and luggage. We took off around 8am and were running almost a half hour ahead of schedule.

Our first flight (Ottawa to Calgary) did not have the promised tv's on board. Although I wasn't mad, I will admit that I was a little disappointed. There were quite a few passengers that were not happy at all though and grumbled all the way to Calgary, a good four hour flight.

"J" got the coveted window seat and was an awesome traveller. We didn't pull out any of our tricks until absolutely needed, probobly a good hour into the flight. We coloured, stickered (if that is a word), sang songs (quietly of course), counted, had snacks, had lunch, and sat and looked out the window.

Halfway through, "J" did ask to go home. He did not want to be on the plane anymore. But a little coaxing and some colouring by me, he was totally distracted and ready to keep going.

When the pilot announced that we were arriving in a sunny and hot Calgary, "J" got upset and said he didn't want to go, but when I promised that Opa would be there to meet us he cheered up rather quickly.

Opa was very excited for "J" to meet Oma, who will be 94 this August. This hour together was very special. Hubby was quite sad that he was not able to be there and worried that we won't have the opportunity to see her again. But, I let him know that Oma told me that she was working hard on reaching 100, so we have a bit more time to visit. Hopefully this winter or spring.

Our ride from Calgary to Regina was quick and painless, thanks to TV in the sky. "J" watched "Treehouse" for the hour we were in the air and I got to close my eyes and rest for a bit. We arrived to 30 degrees and sunny in Regina, a quick tour of the city and back to my Sister's for a run through the sprinkler.

We have been very busy since we arrived. Our first trip on Thursday was to Tot's Café. I have been waiting three years to go to this café and it was great. It should be manditory in all cities with kids to have a café just like it. My Sister was working on opening one in Ottawa when they got the call to move here, so the plans sit waiting for one of us to pick up on it or for her to return. We also visited my Neices Pre-school, their Church, Starbucks, Dairy Queen, the Saskatchewan Dinosaur Museum (free!!), a cool Glebe-like neighbourhood with funky stores, a park by the legistature and ... I got to see a movie... I mean a real movie at the Cinema with my Sister. And No Kids!!! We saw "Failure to Launch" a hilarious chick flick, we laughed, we cried, we ate too much popcorn and twizzlers and... we slept in until after 8am as did all the kids!!!

So far we are having the best time and we are only halfway through. "J" and I are missing Hubby and the puppies but we all and all we are having lots of fun.

Tuesday, May 16, 2006

Coffee Chat

Well, only Ann had coffee. I had a Chai Latté, low-fat, extra hot, which I am totally addicted to. And Andrea had a (I may get this partially wrong) Low-fat Vanilla Latté, I think there is a "half-something" in there, but I missed it.

We had a wonderful evening. Ann arrived from Montréal looking very fresh, especially considering she had a very busy day promoting her two new books. I think (know) she was able to talk with one of our fellow bloggers, Nancy, on air while in Montréal.

We chatted about kids, work, blogging, publishing, strange people on the internet and me possibly running away with both Ann and Andrea in my car. You see, the Starbucks we went to, is apparently the only Starbucks that closes at 9pm, so we hopped in my car and headed down to Ann's hotel to finish our chat and our hot beverages in the lobby.

I had a great evening, chatting with Ann is such a joy, and meeting Andrea for the first time was fabulous. Thank you to both Ann and Andrea for an enjoyable evening.

Ann, we will be watching or listening for you today! Breakfast at the A Channel, CFRA ( after A Channel), News at Noon (CJOH), Rogers, and I am missing one or two after Rogers.

Birthday wishes to both Andrea's and Ann's daughters.

Monday, May 15, 2006

Two more days

Until we leave for Regina!

I am already lying sleepless at night, worrying about travelling with "J". Will I have all the necessary tools to keep him occupied, will I remember his special blanket, will he eat the lunch I pack? All these questions and more have occupied my mind for the last three or four days.

My Sister is raring and ready to go. Our plans include visiting two very special "Kids" cafés, they are cafés that have a play center for kids on one half and a café on the other half. You pay $2 per kid and have to pass through a locked gate to get in or out of the building. Your kids can play while you get a break. I can't wait to check them out.

We are also scheduled to visit Chuck E Cheese, as we don't have one here in Ottawa, "J" should love it. He is a game lover at heart.

We will be going swimming. Possibly to the hot springs in Moose Jaw. And to some sort of play park. All that and more I am sure. Once I get past the plane ride and travelling without hubby, all should be good on our visit.

Sunday, May 14, 2006

Happy Mother's Day

To all the wonderful Mom's I know and to all the wonderful Mom's I don't know, I wish you all the best of Mother's Days.

May your family be kind to you and treat you like Royalty today.
May your kids pick up all their toys, without being asked.
May there be no squabbling about anything you ask them to do.
May you get breakfast, lunch or dinner in bed or at least made for you.
May you get to watch an adult program of you choice today without interruption.
And may you enjoy the day fully with perhaps even an afternoon nap thrown in for good measure.

Whatever you end up doing today, may it be filled with love from your kids, because that is what Mother's Day is all about.

Friday, May 12, 2006

Five Things

I was officially tagged by Nancy for the five's meme. So here I go...

Five things in my fridge:
1. Eggs
2. Avocado
3. Pizza from Farm Boy
4. Fresh Salsa from Farm Boy (can you tell that I love that Farm Boy is a ten minute walk from my house, and that it makes me go out for a walk!)
5. Two bottles of Stella Artois, for when I finish my garden.

Five things in my closet:
1. A basket of Maternity clothes that I can't bear to part with.
2. A basket of clothes from my skinniest days to inspire me.
3. A camera, my old SLR, found a new home.
4. Green dyed shoes from my Sisters wedding.
5. "Oraganizing from the Inside Out" by Julie Morgenstern.

Five things in my purse (I just started carrying one again!)
1. wallet
2. note pad
3. pen
4. Canadian Tire money
5. receipts from shopping today

Five things in my car:
1. A box of Toddler toys from McDonalds and other venues we have collected over the last 2 1/2 years.
2. A box of tissue.
3. Two blankets for "J".
4. An umbrella
5. A jar of American change for the toll booths on our trips.

YAY! I had to think for a couple of those. Sadly, my brain is fried this Friday afternoon.

Thursday, May 11, 2006

Does evey two year old have the stregnth of Hercules?

Or is it just my son and my nephew?

"J" and "J2" have definately gained some stregnth in the last month or so. Either that or I am way more out of shape than I thought. Lately the stregnth in the punches or kicks to the gut have gotten quite a lot more forceful. And don't get me wrong, I don't encourage the punches or kicks, but after almost two week with Opa wrestling. It will take me as much time to remind him that I am not a wrestler. And the worst part is that he wants to wrestle and punch when it is an important time to get ready. It occurs the most when we are getting dressed in the morning, and Hubby is waiting to say "good-bye" at the door. Or is occurs when we are in a time crunch to get our shoes on to go in the car. It never happens when we are just hanging out or playing in the backyard.

Yesterday, on a trip with my Sister to Costco, we found as the two boys were wrestling in the cart that neither of us could pull them apart. And when we did, the feet were flying so fast and furious that we were afraid to put them down for fear they would take off running.

To combat this, I have started a little weight training. I definatly am out of shape and need more stregnth if I am going to have to wrestle a small child, who really isn't so small. I do not want to find myself out muscled by a three year old when August rolls around. And hey, I could use a little buffing up anyway.

Wednesday, May 10, 2006

Farewell Opa

Opa left yesterday at noon. Our house is now so quiet, there are no more newspapers lying around in neat piles to be read at different times. The tickle monster has gone home, the lions and elephants that can be found in sewer grates are no more. "J" somehow understood that when we left Opa at the airport we wouldn't see him again for a while. He hasn't asked for him since we left him there. We miss him already.

Now to keep ourselves further occupied we are preparing for our trip next week. The suitcases are ready. My list of things to bring has begun. The fretting over a solo airplane ride has imbedded in my mind. We need to bring a few treats for the neices and nephew, so those will be picked up in the next few days. I only hope that the weather is as nice there as it has been here. I have been enjoying the warm weather so much that it would be a shame to leave it behind.

Monday, May 08, 2006

Girls night out

Monday, May 15th 8:30pm
Starbucks , Metcalfe and Slater

I know this may be a little later than most would like to go out for a cup of coffee. But, it will be a great evening. One of our favorite authors will be in town to promote her newest books and will only have an opportunity to meet with us on Monday evening. Ann will be coming in around 8pm, so I thought I would suggest 8:30, which could give you enough time to get your kids tucked in bed and make it out for a cup of decaf. You could always arrive a bit early and get a couple of chapters of your latest book in before Ann arrives.

Hope to see you there!

Almost over

The end of our visit is almost near, but we have had a really great time. Another visit to a farm yesterday led me to ask "How many adults do we need to take a toddler to a farm?". The answer was four, Opa, Hubby, A and myself.

"J" is stocked up and ready to go. He has another new bike. The first one wasn't quite right so Opa decided this one was much better. He loves it that's for sure, all it is missing is a cup holder for Mom and we would be all set.

We also took a trip to the Science museum, "A" & "J" had lots of fun running through the Nortel tunnels and bouncing in the playroom. I was sitting watching all the families at the museum and was wondering if one day any of those kids will actually be hanging around with "J". There were also quite a few cute little girls, which made me think, anyone of those could end up being a girlfriend for "J". You just never know.

Thursday, May 04, 2006

Oh the Excitement!

"J" and I are taking a trip!! We are packing our suitcases (which are sitting on hold at Winners as I type) and heading to Regina! Now, hold onto your hats, Regina may not be the most exciting stop on the World tour, but it does have 5 very important things. My Sister, Brother-in-Law, two Neices and a Nephew. This will be our first big trip without Hubby and it will be the longest Hubby and I have been apart since we have been together (that is 11 years, folks!) I hope we can make it.

I have been to Regina before, but never for this long. The good thing is that there is lots to do with kids. Due to their usually harsh winters and sometimes scorching summers, there are many places geared towards bringing your kids to get them out and about. I am very excited to see some of the places my sister has talked about as well as perhaps MooseJaw. I stopped there once on a bus ride to Banff, apparently they have some awesome hotsprings. Thank goodness, my sister just had a baby and I won't feel bad about being a little jiggly in a bathing suit. But, will be working on it starting today.

So May is turning out to be a very fun filled month for me, I only hope that June, July and August prove to be just as exciting!

And no luck with Opa yet, but am working on a second fall visit. The bug is planted.

Tuesday, May 02, 2006

Fun is tiring

I never knew that having so much fun can knock the socks off of you. I have been crashing early every night and I cannot believe how exhausted we all can be from simply having fun. Oh what on earth am I going to do when Opa goes home??? I miss him already and he still has another week here with me. Anybody have suggestions on how we can get Opa to move back to Ottawa? Any ideas how to make the weather not so hot for him, oh wait a minute, then I would be sad. Well, all we can do is make sure he enjoys his visits and continue with our plan on making our basement enjoyable for possible long term stays in the future. Until then we will just love our visit and hope he comes again in the fall.

Monday, May 01, 2006

Could we ask for better weather?

Although Opa does find it a bit warm (he enjoys the cool temperatures of the West Coast) he is enjoying storing up his sunshine vitamins. They has the least amount of sun this past winter in many many years. He was telling me how it rained for 25 days straight, took a break for two days and started all over again. I would have been crying my eyes out!!!

We had an amazing day yesterday. Lots of great photos, a great long walk/hike that wore us all out. Lunch on Sparks Street Mall and a look at Hubby's new office. Then we came home and crashed, all of us.

What on earth are we going to do today that even remotely lives up to yesterday??