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Archive for August 2010

day 243 - they all rolled over and one fell out $

Tuesday, 31 August 2010

Midnight shift used to mean that I could sleep diagonally across the bed. Now it means that I get the six inches of bed left beside Mr Bear.



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day 242 - ethan's day with nana & grandad $

Monday, 30 August 2010

Ava and Owen have each had their day at Nana & Grandad's house this summer and today was Ethan's turn. I dropped him off on my way to work this morning and he was thrilled. I was a little bit worried because as you can see, he has a devilish look in his eye. The good news is that he apparently behaved himself. If this look is ever followed by an evil laugh you're in big trouble.



I honestly can't remember the last time I converted a photo to black and white. It's been far too long and it's strange considering I used to convert almost all of them to black and white. In fact I used to do it so much that my mom once told me "You know when I was your age we couldn't wait to be able to take pictures in colour."

I just haven't been feeling the whole black and white thing lately. But last week, I spent a lot of time talking with our Photoshop guru on the retreat and he reminded me that sometimes all you need is a good old duotone.

And you know what? I kind of like it.

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day 241 - spider-man & the incredible hulk $

Sunday, 29 August 2010

This morning three little kids (apparently still wiped from the night before) scoured over the Sears Wish Book after breakfast. A bold move considering Santa's been watching them very carefully lately and it's been one hell of a mixed bag.



The kids looked at the pictures and Ava circled everything that looked good. and when I say "everything", I mean everything. Santa's going to need to get a second job.



Yesterday I promised three little kids that I would paint their faces for the party but things got busy and I forgot. I made good on that promise today.

It's apparent that mommy's face painting skills, although improved, still need a lot of work. Titter amongst yourselves as I give you the Incredible Hulk (Owen), a beautiful butterfly and Spider-man (Ethan).



A valiant effort, however I think just a pencil thin mustache would have achieved the whole "less is more" thing.



However the scary Hulk face Owen worked on all afternoon would have been totally unnecessary and wouldn't have gone with a mustache.



It was a nice day that ended with a trip to Grandma & Grandpa's house and a trip through the drive thru on the way home. And what day would be complete without a story?

Here's my daughter who, as the young man with the long shaggy hair passed my tea through the window at Tim Hortons, screamed "Mommy! Is that a girl or a guy?!" In that moment I realized - there is a little bit of my 92 year old grandmother in her somewhere.



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day 240 - summer barbecue $

Saturday, 28 August 2010

Today we hosted my company's summer barbecue barbeque (kinda torn on which one to use...to hell with it I am using this one) barbecue. It was a fun time and nice to be able to finally have my work people come to the fictional soap opera town where everybody knows everybody's business and the stories are so unbelievable that I often take the newspaper in to back them up. Some are definitely more entertaining than others and given the right amount of drinks, I could put on my storytelling hat and put on one hell of a show. Just ask my neighbours about last year's summer bbq for the street. Either I was an absolute scream or I made a complete ass of myself because they tried to ply me with drinks the second I arrived at this year's bbq. No show this year peeps.

Anyway, where was I? Family barbecue.

It was an absolutely beautiful day and a scorcher but the new patio worked out incredibly well and it was really nicely shaded from the sun. The adults had a good time



and so did the kids. Here's Ethan upon completion of the "eat all of the worms (gummy) in the dirt (oreo crumbs)" game.



And here's Ava who picked out her outfit for the party two weeks ago and pretty dress or no pretty dress she was hell bent on keeping up with the older boys playing in the sprinkler.



After everybody left, we had a campfire in the backyard with Nana & Grandad (that's Ethan in this picture).



I had spider dogs on the brain and scarfed four of these bad boys. Watch out scale. It's going to be bad news tomorrow.



My kids very rarely fall asleep in somebody's arms. They go like crazy and don't stop. Naptime is frustrating and bedtime is always a disaster with them vaulting the gate a million times to give another kiss or to hide under Ava's bed. If they fall asleep on you, you know they are absolutely beat.

There's nothing like sitting around a campfire and having one of your kids fall asleep in your arms. Here's Ethan cuddled up my lap.

There's also nothing like inviting your parents over for a campfire, getting all nice and toasty by the fire in your hoody and trackpants and falling asleep, leaving them to chat amongst themselves. Sorry Mom and Dad.



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day 239 - play date $

Friday, 27 August 2010

When I was eleven years old, we moved. We didn't move far, but we moved far enough that my sister and I had to switch schools. We had to leave friends behind and made new friends at our new school. Then high school happened and *gasp* friends from the public school system entered into the mix. ;)

Anyway, several of the girls I have had the pleasure of knowing since kindergarten now live in town and have kids the same age as my own. One of them babysat Ava when I went back to work. Another one has a daughter the same age as Ava who will be in her class. Then there is Michele who has joined me in my new adventures in running and knows what it is like to have two very busy boys. Boys who like to climb and get into things and like to write on stuff with permanent marker.

Today Michele invited the kids and I for a play date at her house. Now I don't get out much with the kids by myself because chasing the three of them is exhausting, but there is one thing I do know: fenced in yard = promised land.

We had an absolute blast. The kids had a great time and so did I. Here is our day.

It started out a little bit cool outside but there's nothing like a game of "patio chair spin" to get you flushed and ready to hurl. Just looking at these pictures makes me sick (this is Owen by the way).





Before we knew it, it was lunchtime. There are few things in this world more delicious than the spider dog. I never seem to think about these until we have a campfire, but Michele was on the ball and the kids LOVED them.





It was a fantastic day and we will have to do it again soon. Thanks Michele!



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day 238 - make or break $

Thursday, 26 August 2010

Tonight was the defining moment in the couch to 5K process. The moment that would make or break the whole thing. After five weeks of interval running that alternated running and jogging and the longest running stretch being eight minutes, my running partner Michele and I were faced with our biggest challenge yet - a five minute warm up followed by 20 continuous minutes of running.



And we did it. Sure there was lots of trash talking of what we would do if I got my hands on the guy who created the app, but we did it. (Okay so it was me doing all of the trash talking but in all fairness I am the one who always ends up swallowing the bugs.)

This week we are back to 8-10 minute jogging intervals which will now seem easy by comparison. Looks like the mysterious app developer's diabolical plot worked. Crazy buggar.

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day 237 - heading home $

Wednesday, 25 August 2010

The out of the office portion of our work retreat wrapped up today. We packed up early and moved out of the chalet, ending two great days of team building. Two days of chasing a local skunk and trying to get a picture of it for the people who had never had the "skunk experience" before. Two days of trying to identify the fungus that was growing in the hot tub. But most importantly, two days of fun getting to know people you have spoken with on the phone for many years but have never met in person. What a great experience.



Entertaining pictures missed today? Me almost filling the car with diesel at the gas station. Oh and let's not forget me popping the trunk when I meant to pop the gas flap and then forgetting to close it before I drove across the street to Tim Hortons. Why is it that the second I have to drive somebody I don't know well anywhere I turn into a bumbling idiot?

Anyway, the highlight of my day and the other picture I did get today? Making it home in time to have spaghetti with three little kids who were all very happy to see me. Actually - now that I think about it, only one of the kids was happy to see me. Ethan jumped into my lap and the other two ignored me.



(This is Owen by the way.)

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day 236 - zip lining $

Tuesday, 24 August 2010

Today was an awesome day on our work retreat. This was the view from our chalet at the base of Blue Mountain. This is as mountainous as southwestern Ontario gets but it is still beautiful.



After breakfast we were off to our team building exercises. Shortly after arriving at the eco-tour adventure place, we were suited up with our equipment. Nothing's more depressing than them loading you up with ten pounds of hooks, ropes and harnesses and having them weigh you afterward. It didn't help that I also had a bag with two cameras, my wallet, GPS and iPod strapped to my back.

It was a little bit upsetting to see the same list posted for everyone to see at the top of the second zip line. I know what you are thinking - what's she complaining about? She doesn't weigh that much. Think of it this way - take your weight, add 15 lbs, write it in big numbers on a sheet of paper and post it on a wall in front of 12 other people and see how you feel. ;)

Anyway...to make a long story even longer, here are the other pictures I took today. Here's the official zip line chastity belt. A picture of my face would have been better as I wondered what the hell this thing was for. I later discovered it was the hook that was going to slide me to my death on the little zip line.

Apparently it's rated for 3,000 lbs.



First stop on the eco-tour? The suspension bridge.



The view of Georgian Bay was beautiful.



Next stop? A tree-top walk across a 600 m series of planks 20 to 55 feet off the ground. It was very cool.



Next stop: the scenic caves. I don't care what the guide said - I'd need a lot more than a butt groove on the right hand side to squeeze through this opening. This is obviously a B-cup and under attraction.



Next stop: the 350 foot zip line followed by the 1,000 foot zip line. Scary but a little less so when you realize that there is a little bit of tension in the rope before you jump. Far better in my opinion than suddenly finding it after a free fall.

At this point I am starting to wonder what the hell good a 3,000 lb hook is going to be. Who tied my ropes and were they drinking at the time were becoming far more important questions on my mind.



And last but not least, what good is risking your life if you don't have the proof to back it up:



Overall it was a fantastic day and so much fun. I would do it all over again in a heartbeat.

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day 235 - work retreat $

Monday, 23 August 2010

My schedule never changes. I work nine to five thirty on the days I work and I am always home at night. Jason works shifts and the kids are used to him being gone while they are sleeping but it's a very rare thing for me to spend a night away from home let alone two of them.

Today I left for two days for a work retreat with my department. (I'm not one for making "Hey! I'm going away for two days. Come rob my house!" Facebook status updates, so I am typing this after the fact.)

Each of the kids dealt with it in their own way. Ava drew me a picture of a house. The house had a window and she was peaking out of it so I would remember to come home. Owen cried his eyes out and didn't want me to leave and Ethan unscrewed the valve stems on my tires as I packed the car. I blame Toyota for that one. Because the tires are filled with nitrogen instead of air, the valve stems are bright green instead of black. They might as well have made them fluorescent pink with neon flashing lights.



Here are the kids with the babysitter and her kids as I left for Blue Mountain.

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day 234 - the photographer $

Sunday, 22 August 2010

I got my first camera when I was about ten years old. It was my parents' camera that they took on their honeymoon. It was a Kodak camera that took square pictures and used flash bulbs. It looked just like this and I took a lot of pictures with it. I would mail the film away and get it developed and then the prints would be mailed back to me.

Wait a minute -- that was the equivalent of an "I walked five miles to school and back" story, wasn't it? Sorry.

Where was I?

Oh right - Ava's new camera with built in flash that takes rectangular pictures. She LOVES it.



Another thing she loved this weekend? Giving people nicknames. Yesterday she turned to me in the car and said "What do you want to listen to, Hopscotch?" Ahhh...she makes me laugh.




Here are some pictures she took today. I love how you can see the reflection of her camera in my lens.



Here's her photo of the day. She's obsessed with self portraits and they have to be silly ones (I think there's a bit of concentration in there too).



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day 233 - rose of sharon $

Saturday, 21 August 2010

Another not so exciting day here at our house. Not a whole lot going on. Here's one of the blooms on the Rose of Sharon in the back garden.



Here's Ava's photo of the day (we're working on zoom). I think I need to invest in some Oil of Olay. :(



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