Wednesday, April 6, 2016

April showers?

The winter clothes are away. I found my flip flops the other day. But the planet has other ideas. A dump of fresh white snow today is doing a nice cover up job and hiding the usual mud-mess of spring, but is nonetheless not all that welcome. Thanks very much. I didn't go out in it so no pictures of the snow, although I admired it from the doorway for a minute.
Instead Lili and I had a lovely lazy day inside. I thought I'd snap an unusual picture- one showing real life, dirty dishes and heaping compost pile and all.

I wanted to get a good photo of her curls, but she does not like to pose for the camera at all, so this was the best I could do...


When the boys came in from school we had the leftovers of my first Death Cafe cake for a snack, and Brendan made hot chocolate. Another real life pic. I like capturing these moments and imagine I will appreciate them in years to come.


 And just because...
 Bomber is getting a bit more adventurous and wandering a little further every day. Which means it's time to get a tag on him and probably take him to the vet for a wee operation. I hope it doesn't change his personality- is that a thing with cats?
 Jazzy was a little peeved that throwing a stick from the doorway was as far as I was going to go. Until Steve came home and she got a bit more fun. I'm looking forward to seeing her enjoy the water again this year. If summer ever comes.

Friday, January 22, 2016

Lili and mama at home.

Painting is a big thing around here. Blobs and lines. And Bomber wants a shot!
A chilly walk in the woods this morning. It was about -17, which would have been a breeze had I remembered my proper gloves. We only managed about 20 minutes. These two were loving it while I faked a smile and tried to hold on to the dog's lead while balling my fists up inside my driving gloves (which are thick and cozy but not at this temperature). When we got back in Lili was still toasty warm all over, so I vote again for LLBean snowsuits and MEC "toasty mitts" :) And it was also down to the way a two year old walks around in the woods- lots of warmth created with her insisting on going in the opposite direction to her mother, off piste and over every fallen tree she could find.

Monday, May 11, 2015

Jazzy


In the end the decision was not all that difficult. Probably because we didn't really do it "properly". Minimal discussion really. There was a moment, sitting outside in the sunny backyard, when Steve and I smiled at each other and muttered accusations at ourselves about 'flying by the seat of our pants' or 'throwing caution to the wind' or somesuch (which is actually a habit we secretly love about each other and ourselves!) but it ended in laughter and excited grinning. We were getting a dog!

We've talked about it many times before of course, but, well, the time just felt right, and the right dog came along. So, meet... Jazzy!! 


She is utterly gorgeous and fits in perfectly with our family. She is particularly attached to Siobhan, even refusing to go outside for a desperately needed pee unless accompanied by her chosen human for at least the first two weeks, but she has relaxed about that somewhat now, and the kids and Steve get plenty of attention and affection from her now too! 

Here are a few more pictures. 

She is fast on her feet for an 8 year old. 

Hanging out in the shade under the trampoline. These two are good together. If Araliya annoys Jazzy, she will get out of her way or, at worst, bark at her once, nothing aggressive so far. And Lili makes ME feel like an angry wolf sometimes so Jazzy really is patient! 

She LOVES the water!! Perfect for our water mad family. 

She is really very beautiful. In looks and temperament. 

Having a nap in the car. 

One of the beaches near the new house we're moving to in the summer. 

All in all she is adjusting wonderfully and is now settled completely I'd say. Sweet, lovely Jazzy. Here's hoping for many more years of fun and friendship with her! 

Thursday, March 26, 2015

Spring forward

It was such a beautiful morning this morning. I love the first Monday after the clocks change, especially if you wake up to a warm and sunny day like today. We haven't walked to school for a while, so this morning was a treat. We left nice and early (but still arrived just after the bell) and tried to stick to the sunny side of the street. 
  The sidewalks are clearer now so getting the buggy along is no longer a frustrating exercise. Tadhg enjoyed his first scooter ride of the year and Brendan enjoyed pelting Tadhg with snow. Araliya sang to herself in the stroller while I turned my face to the warm sun whenever I could and dreamed of summer. 

Sunday, March 8, 2015

Around the craft table.

 This photo was taken quite a while ago, last fall I think. But I love it! Moments like this, when everyone is creating or working away happily together just fill me up with bliss. What awesome little people we have here!

Strawberry Bonnie plays again!

Not the best photos but these are all I've managed to capture so far. Araliya carrying Strawberry Bonnie, her auntie Caitlin's doll bought in 1981 or thereabouts. I am a little worried that the wear and tear in the fabric of her soft body won't hold up to the rough play around our house, but I'm thrilled to see this doll being enjoyed by this gorgeous wee girl. 
The carrier was made by a very talented mama friend of mine in Ottawa, and I just had to choose the one with this fabric selection- ants and bugs and garden creatures all over it. I'll get a better picture of the back later. It's truly beautiful. 

Together again in a new house!

The backlog on here has paralysed me for too long! I'm just going to start posting again and work on filling the gaps over time. 
We're more or less settled in our new rented house in Toronto. It's only a short stay, about 6 months in total, but we have decided to unpack absolutely everything and engage in a serious bit of purging.
 We're not putting much on the walls to minimize the repair work when we leave, and some things are staying in the basement so it is not as cluttered as our houses usually are. At least not yet. 
We're trying a new thing... Biggest telly upstairs in the main living room of this bungalow, with downstairs reserved for play and mess. It's working so far, I think it means less screen time overall. Although I will post at some point on the computer game saga. 

This house is much brighter than our last, which I am loving! I think the amount of daylight that gets in has to go up near the top of the priorty list for future houses again, the last one was way too dark. 

Since the main purpose of this blog is to provide us with lovely printed books in lieu of photo albums I will be adding more photos as the house is tidied. 
And filling in the big gaping holes over the last year and a bit!! Paddy reminded me recently he hasn't even seen our Costa Rica and Nicaragua photos! 


Sunday, August 31, 2014

Tourists for the day

We haven't done many touristy things in Ottawa yet so when a friend asked if we'd like to join a group on a boat trip on the Ottawa river we went for it. About time since we'll be leaving Ottawa fairly soon. We set off from the bottom of the Rideau Canal lock system and puttered about for an hour and a half. We learned a little more about the city and then checked out the free bit of the Bytown Museum that shows you how the locks work. Afterwards, joined another family and went up the Peace Tower on Parliament Hill. We found out that there is a law forbidding any building from being taller than the flag on the Peace Tower and we counted (or lost count of) all the Canadian flags visible around the city. 







They enjoyed the bus journey there with friends, playing and eating on the boat, seeing the huge bells in the tower, ice cream at the museum and rolling down the big grassy hill by the locks.

Saturday, August 16, 2014

A long awaited camping trip

This place is almost too good to be true. A perfect spot for camping with kids, and especially good for keen paddlers. We joined a family who live on our street. One of the many families we are going to miss when we move on from here. But I'm not thinking about that yet- more about the camping...  

A gorgeous beach, right by our campsite in the trees. The river widens here and a giant eddy of sorts means still water with a gradual entry but not far from some great rapids for a bit of whitewater fun. We took our good canoe and pootled about on the quiet bit of the river while our friend did some whitewater paddling upstream. He also played rescue boat and cheerleader for Siobhan and Regan when they bravely donned life jackets and launched themselves into the river just upstream of the biggest set of rapids. John said it was just like a roller coaster only better, and 100% natural!  

The kids enjoyed hours of beach time, plenty of nakedness, swimming in the river and smaller rapids, jumping off a rock, paddling to an island, and exploring a bit in the evening and (very) early morning- we spotted a skunk, some deer, toads, caterpillars, fish and john caught a snake for a closer look. And we had a tame chipmunk hanging about. The weather was perfect until the last minute when it began to chuck it down.

Here are a few photos... More to come and I may get round to making a little movie as there were a lot of sweet moments caught on video.






After leaving this awesome place, which is purposefully being kept a secret from the  rest of Ottawa ;) we went to visit some friends at their cottage on a lake nearby. As always it was fun and inspiring to spend time with such a big family (7 kids-makes us want a bigger family too). We drove ATVs through the muddy woods in the rain, each boy riding along in front with a grin from ear to ear, and then jumped off a cliff and platform into a pristine lake. Steve and I jumped from about 30 feet- crazy stuff!! 

Sunday, July 27, 2014

At the beach

A nice thing about Ottawa is the proximity of city beaches. This morning, the kids and I hit Britannia Beach so Siobhan could have some kid-free time to get the house ready for a viewing. We had fun in the park, swam in the water and explored the break waters.