Monday, January 30, 2012

He's and old man

This weekend, I took the girls on a road trip.  Just me.  What was I thinking?  I'm not sure.  There were several moments when I wondered what I was doing (like when Ginny is freaking out because CeCe is hitting her and I am trying to navigate icy roads and freezing rain) and other times when all was good (like when they all fell asleep).  It was kind of a last minute decision.  Jorja was off school on Friday and Julie was busy on both Saturday and Sunday doing some training, so I thought I would take the kids to my parents' for the weekend. 

So we ventured out Friday morning after Julie left for work.  My initial plan was to make it to Wainwright before we had lunch, but the girls were soooooo hungry by the time we hit Battleford that I stopped there.  I pulled into McD's and we went in.  It turns out that you can't order lunch 9 minutes before 11:00.  Now that may not seem like it's that long to wait to order lunch, when you are by yourself with three kids (one of them being CeCe), nine minutes is an eternity.  They had muffins and I had an egg mcmuffin.  We were back on the road and things were going well.  Except that CeCe was not napping.  The entire drive, no one napped.  It was a long four and a half hours.  Near the end, we passed the time like this:

We arrived in Tofield safe and sound and had a good weekend visiting.  The girls all got to go for coffee with Nanny and a friend of hers while Dad and I held down the home front.  Life was good.  Saturday we were discussing the previous night and Jorja told me that she took Ginny pee once.  Really?  When was that, I asked.  She told me it was before I came to bed.  "Apparently she still had some pee in her bladder."  Apparently.

Sunday we woke up to freezing rain, so we waited a little while and then set out.  The roads weren't great at the start, but they cleared up by the time we were back in the good land (Saskatchewan).  And this time all three fell asleep.  What a glorious hour that was.

Today was back to the routine of things - work, school, daycare.  This evening I took Jorja to her piano lesson.  Her teacher does it out of her living room, and has a folding room divider that parents can sit behind if they want to stay.  Enough for some privacy, but still able to hear everything.  Jorja was playing a song called 'In the old days' or something like that.  Her teacher asked her if she ever asked her grandparents or even parents what it was like when they were kids.  Jorja said that my favourite movie when I was a kid was Star Wars.  Her teacher said that it was probably still one of my favourites even now that I am a big kid.  "Oh no!" Jorja piped up.  "He's not a big kid.  He's an old man.  He's 39!"  Thanks Jorja...thanks.  Later.

Monday, January 23, 2012

Loooong neck

On Saturday, Jorja had a birthday party to go to.  It was a '50's style sock-hop in a local school gym.  She had a good time, but that also meant that we had to take Ginny out for something special.  We decided on a new frozen yogurt bar in town called Pure (there are 2 dots on top of the u) and the Giggle Factory.  Pure is a pretty neat place.  It's all self serve - you pick your flavour and load it up with whatever goodies you want - from fresh fruit to cereal to granola to chocolate to gummy worms to sauces to sprinkles.  Then you bring it to the cashier and it's all done by weight.  And it's pretty reasonable - at least compared to something like DQ.  After the ice cream we walked next door to the Giggle Factory, which is a local toy store that always has lots of stuff out for the kids to try.  Jorja and Ginny always like going there, but CeCe really got into it this time.  When it was time to leave, she had a full blown throw-yourself-on-the-ground freak out.  Gotta love that. 

After that, we still had some time to kill, so we walked into the Sasktel store (did I mention this is a pretty great little strip mall?).  We walked out with new iPhones.  Let me say, they are pretty awesome.  Julie has wanted one for a while now, and I was holding out.  But now let's just say I'm glad I got one too.  I opted for the super heavy duty case, just so that nothing happens to it at work.  It took me a while to figure out just how to get the case open and the phone in.  Yes, it is a suit of armor.  I couldn't help but picture the scene from Star Wars where Anakin in becoming Darth Vader.  He is badly burned and frail and quite weak looking.  Then they put his mask on and he comes to life.  *Insert Vader breath here*  That's how I saw my phone in that instant - this frail little thing, and then ready for anything in it's new suit of armor.  As long as I use it for good instead of evil I guess.  Beware the Dark Side Luke.

One of the advantages of an iPhone is the ability to take videos and then upload them to youtube right away.  Here is CeCe with a mouthful of crackers telling what a giraffe has.  It's pretty cute (even with the mouthful of crackers).

We gave our old phone to the girls to play with.  I can't believe how into it Jorja is.  She's taking pictures, videos, writing stories on the 'meemo pad' (that's how she read that) and listening the different ring tones.  Who would have thought all those cheap tinny ring tone melodies could bring so much enjoyment.  If she could actually connect with someone else, I don't think we'd ever see her again.  We could always find her though - just listen for the ring tone.  Later.

Friday, January 13, 2012


Last Sunday afternoon, we came up with the brainwave to take the kids skating.  All three kids.  In retrospect, I'm not quite sure what we were thinking or envisioning.  CeCe's not even two yet, but she did have bob-skates.  Ginny started with real skates, but switched to bob-skates shortly after we arrived.  Jorja kept her real skates on, but was not letting go of the push-bar trainer thing.  I wasn't expecting them to be 
Hayley Wickenheiser and I don't think Julie wasn't expecting them to be Jamie Sale.  We also weren't expecting three Bambis.  I guess I don't remember learning how to skate, and now, the ice just doesn't seem that slippery.  They were so excited to go and thought it was going to be so much fun.  A couple of bruised butts and some tears later, I'm not sure what they thought.  They did say they wanted to go again though, so that's good.  The extra child to parent ratio didn't help things either.  Even Ginny picked up on this.  As we were driving home, she said, "We needed an extra Mom out there."  I looked over at Julie and said, "She wants us to get a sister wife."  Let's just say that we're not going to.

Julie's parents were up this week and we were going to go out for supper.  It was decided that we would try Red Lobster.  Jorja went there on a school field trip once, and decided that she liked shrimp, so we thought the kids would be alright.  There's always chicken fingers.  In the end, Ginny decided that she too would try shrimp.  Jorja's sales pitch must have been effective.  It went something like this:  'Shrimp look just like chicken Ginny.  They're smaller, but they look like chicken, not the shrimp you see in the store.  They're made from the pinchers on lobster claws.  They crack open the pinchers and get the shrimp out and they look like chicken.  Real shrimp swim around in the sea - I saw a video on it.  They're really good Ginny, are you going to try some?'  After that, I'm surprised we didn't all have shrimp. 

It's funny how the girls' minds work differently.  Jorja wanted to use something of Ginny's and Ginny asked her if she knew the magic word.  "Please?" Jorja said.  "No," Ginny replied.  "Kitties?"  "No."  "Monkeys?"  "No.  It's butt!"  And she laauughed.  Goofy kid.

On Friday I took the stroller to pick Jorja up from school.  We have a two seater where the smallest kid sits in front and the bigger kid can either sit at the back facing backwards or stand on a little platform facing forward.  Jorja is always complaining that she never gets to go on the back of the stroller.  I keep telling her that she's six and can probably walk.  Grudgingly, she always does.  On Friday, I decided to try letting all three ride.  Ginny sat in the rear seat with her feet together, and there was still room for Jorja to stand on the platform.  Off we went, and they couldn't have been more pleased.  "Look, three girls in the stroller!" they said.  "Yeah, and one donkey pushing them all," I said.  Now to be honest, I didn't think they would embrace that concept with the fervor or vigor that they did.  "Donkey!  Go this way!  Donkey!  Faster!  Donkey!  Watch out for that ice!"  If they had a bit of a Scottish accent, I would have thought I was in Shrek.  Oh well, their not so mighty steed got them all home safe and sound.  Later.

Friday, January 6, 2012

Twinkle Twinkle

Okay, I think I have it figured out now.  I had to upload it to youtube first and now it seems to work.  Enjoy, but don't turn up the volume too loud.

Advice from Ginny

It's Friday today, so it's my day at home with the girls. Jorja still had school, so we took her there. As we were walking in, the sidewalk was quite icy, so I told Ginny to hold my hand. Jorja then grabbed Ginny's other hand and said, "Yeah, I don't do ice either." You don't 'do' ice? Really?

After we dropped Jorja off at school I took the younger two to Safeway with me. We were waiting at the deli department and CeCe was sitting in the cart fighting with her seat belt, trying to get out and squawking pretty good. Ginny then decided that in she would give CeCe some advice. She stood on the bottom part of the cart and pulled herself up so she was eye level with CeCe. Then she said, "CeCe, you should be quiet. See what I am doing? I am being quiet and not doing anything. That is what you should do." When did she become the moral compass?

After school, I let them take out their musical instruments. So they were all marching around the living room, banging away on cymbals, the triangle shakers and a couple of other things that I don't know the name of. I tried uploading a video here, but I can't seem to get it to work. We'll see if I can get it figured out. In the meantime, I think I may have to start bringing earplugs home from work. Later.

Monday, January 2, 2012


As CeCe gets nearer to the two year mark, it seems her attitude is following suit.  She definitely has a stubborn streak and a bit of a temper too.  We've started giving her time-outs when she acts up.  We have a spot in our family room where she now has to go to 'sit'.  She's starting to get pretty good at it actually.  When you tell her that she needs to sit, she heads over there and plunks herself down.  She puts her head down and tried her hardest to avoid any eye contact.  It looks like she has the feeling shame part down.  The only problem is that she is just so darn cute when she does it that it's hard to keep a straight face.  When she is done, I ask if she's ready to get up and she says yeah and then we hug and it's all good.  For a few minutes and then we do it all over again.  It appears that the use of the word 'sit' is rubbing off on Ginny now.  Tonight after tub, she was tearing around with CeCe and they were getting each other all revved up.  I told Ginny that she needed to calm down and just sit for a minute.  So she went over to CeCe's area and sat herself down.  A couple of seconds later her partner in crime came and joined her.  Not exactly what I had in mind, but the self-imposed time out seemed to work.  The two of them are going to get into a lot of trouble together - I can see that coming already.

I had to work today, but Julie and the girls still had an extra day off, so they came and met me for a lunch date.  We went to Timim Horton's.  That's how Ginny says it - there's an extra im on tim.  As we were almost done, a friend of mine, Bruce,  walked in.  Jorja had already gone to the bathroom to wash up and Julie was in there with Ginny when he walked over to our table.  CeCe was in the process of eating the top half off of a chocolate covered long john, and her face showed it.  Jorja pointed out that her face was covered in chocolate and then Bruce said, "That's how it's supposed to be, isn't it?"  Jorja then felt the need to explain why she had no chocolate on her face.  "I already went and washed.  I peed too while I was in there.  That's why it took so long."  Bruce, who has never met Jorja before laughed and took it all in stride and I slid under the table.  I guess maybe we need to talk about how much we need to share.  Later.

Sunday, January 1, 2012

Merry belated Christmas and Happy New Year

It is now January first and I'm back to work tomorrow.  I don't really feel ready for that, but what can you do?  The brewery generally shuts down between Christmas and New Year's so we moved all the stats to the week between.  That way we got all the time off and only needed to use one holiday day.  But I guess it will be good to get back into the routine of things - work, school, daycare. 

The holidays began with a stomach flu in the house - always fun.  It seems that this year has been a lot worse than ever before for stomach bugs (in our house anyway).  We've been pretty lucky up until now.  I guess it's probably the little germ magnets bringing it home. 

We went to our church's Christmas Eve candlelight service on the evening of the 24th.  I think next year will be better is all I have to say about that.  Well, it wasn't that bad.  The older two were fine (and didn't have any incidents with hot wax this year) but CeCe cannot sit still and quiet for an hour.  So I spent much of the time in the foyer with her walking around.  She was happy enough as long as she didn't have to sit still.  And as we were pacing the foyer and the hallways of the church, we encountered several kids in various stages of meltdowns and tantrums.  In that fleeting moment, I realized that maybe we had pretty good kids.  We were already a couple of days into holidays and there had been many instances of patience being tried, but right then, in that light, they looked pretty good.

We came home from church and opened our gifts that night.  It has become our custom to give the girls a new pair of pajamas every Christmas, so that is the first present they open, then they put them on, and then we carry on with the festivities.  They all had a blast and CeCe really got into it this year as well.  It was a late night and they were all ready for bed. 

After lunch on Christmas day, we set out for Julie's parents' place.  We got there in time for the turkey supper with all the trimmings.  The girls then got round two of opening presents and had another late night.  You'd think that after a few late nights that maybe, just maybe, there would be a little sleeping in.  By sleeping in, all I mean is sleeping past 7:00.  Nope.  Every morning was the same.  They lay in bed in their room and then as soon as the clock hits seven, they're out.  "Daddy!  It's seven o'clock!" 

Surprisingly, they had a bit more snow down south than we do here, so we got to partake in the second annual toboggan/sled day in the hills.  Julie's Dad brought some wood (and the girls) out in the backhoe and made a fire.  Julie's brother and his wife were there and Julie's Mom came out too.  Julie's Dad also brought out a sled to pull behind the quad this year that kind of looks like Santa's sled.  There were a lot of rides in that before we made it out to the hills.  The afternoon was spent trudging up the hill and flying down it.  It was a lot of fun, and everyone was still able to walk the next day.  The girls had a lot of fun too, and did remarkably well climbing up that hill.  Every once in a while they would try to hitch a ride on the toboggan, but that wasn't happening.  It was hard enough just walking up there after a while.  By the end of the afternoon, Ginny made it half way up and then plunked herself down and just sat there eating snow.  I've tried in the past to not get them to eat snow, but they're kids and this was Christmas.  What the heck.  Every time we passed her on the way up, we asked her if she wanted to go again.  "No, I'm just eating snow and having a snack," was her answer.  Alrighty then.  For my very last run, I took CeCe with me.  She had been content to sit with Poppa in the backhoe and watch everyone up until then.  I waited to the end to take her just in case she liked it.  There's no way I was going to carry her up the hill every time.  I'm not quite sure if she liked it or not.  She was pretty quiet when we hit the bottom - not quite sure if she should laugh or cry, shit or puke.  It was time to head home.  I'm sure next year she'll be in there like a dirty shirt.  There was talk of bringing out some wieners and marshmallows next year too - looks like it could be evolving into quite the fun annual tradition. 

We came back to Saskatoon on the 28th and just hung out for a few days.  The girls played with their new stuff and continued staying up late and not sleeping in.  Maybe that's the one thing to look forward to in the teenage years. 

My parents came over and spent New Year's with us and the kids got round three of Christmas.  We actually stayed up until midnight this year too.  We had a nice spread of appetizers for supper and snacks and watched the movie 'Bridesmaids' after the kids went to bed.  Funny, funny movie.  The movie ended at about ten to twelve, so we watched the taped delay version of the Niagara Falls New Year's celebration, kissed and went to bed. 

So that's it for 2011.  It's been a good year - looking back a lot of stuff has happened.  Here's hoping 2012 is even better.  (Except for the fact that I will turn 40.)  Later.