Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Another package

My secret pal gift for the monthly exchange arrived yesterday. This month's theme was "something related to Ethiopian food, recipes, etc." I could smell the contents even before I opened the package. I received a variety of Ethiopian spices. What a great idea! And how nice to include Mike in the exchange . . . let's face it - he's the cook around here! He loves to try out new recipes and new ingredients and I can't wait to taste what he comes up with.

So once again . . . Thank you Secret Pal!

Sunday, July 20, 2008

Our soccer player

Every Saturday morning we head out to the soccer field to watch Austin play his favourite sport . . . soccer. This is his first year playing and he loves it. His favourite position to play is defense and he's pretty good at it too (that coming from a proud mom!). It's a great league he's in and he's already learned a lot from it. Here are a few pictures of him in action.

Monday, July 14, 2008

One little monkey jumping on the bed,

She fell off and bumped her head,

Mama called the doctor, the doctor said,

"No more monkeys jumping on the bed!"

Ok, she wasn't actually jumping but she was being silly at bedtime and bonked her head on her headboard right above her eye. There was a lot of blood and we weren't sure whether or not to take her in to the clinic. We put ice on it and the bleeding had stopped but it still looked like it was gaping open a little. So we decided we'd call and speak to the nurse for some advice. She said because the cut was on her face, we should take her in just to have it looked at.

So off we went to the medical clinic. Samara fell asleep on the way there and I kind of hoped she would stay that way - ha! Didn't happen. She was actually in a really good mood though and was being silly and having a great time in the clinic.

When the doctor came in (we were lucky enough to get to see our own family doctor who happened to be working tonight), she took a look at the cut and thought she better have some stitches. She was just going to put a steri-strip on but was worried that Samara would try to pull it off, which is probably true. Samara sat very still while the doctor put a numbing cream on the wound and then played some more while we waited a bit. But then the worst part came. We had to wrap her in a blanket so she couldn't swing her arms around and I had to hold her down. It was awful! I held it together pretty good but I was on the verge of tears at a few points. Samara screamed through the first stitch and then settled down for the second one. When she was done, she had a treat (which I had remembered to grab quickly before I left the house) and all was well again.
Look at that precious little face!

And now we're home and she's playing away . . . not interested at all in going to bed. She seems wide awake. It's going to be a long night. We've been advised to wake her up every few hours because she banged her head. Yawn! I'm tired just thinking about it!

London Children's Museum

The plan on Saturday was to meet Dave, Jayne, Jaiden and Justin (a family from our China adoption group) in London at Storybook Gardens. We headed out knowing the weather forecast wasn't in our favour. As soon as we arrived there and were next in line to pay to get in, it started pouring! It was the kind of ran that just running to your car gets you wet enough to feel as though you were submersed in a pool of water. We were soaked! I think the only one who liked it was Justin who giggled the whole time from the shelter to the vehicle. :)

It was a good thing we had actually planned ahead and researched some other things to do in London in case of bad weather so we went to Plan B - The Children's Museum in London. What a great place. It was three floors of educational fun for the kids. They all enjoyed themselves immensely as did us adults who tried to chat while chasing after five excited children.

After the museum, we finished the day with a nice dinner out. It was great to see Dave and Jayne again along with their beautiful children. Victoria and Austin always have a lot of fun with Jaiden. As for Samara and Justin, even though they don't interact with each other too much yet at this age, they have a connection that hopefully they'll appreciate as they get older.

Samara doing a dinosuar puzzle:

Searching for dinosaur bones:

Three Olympic medalists:

Austin doing some ice fishing (his favourite part of the day):

Samara giving daddy a ride on the snowmobile:

"Oh sorry Daddy, I found a new guy to ride with me!"

Cooking in the Victorian kitchen:

Samara in a caterpillar costume:

Making a butterfly craft:
Dr. Victoria explaining of the function of a large intestine to patient Jaiden:

Dr. Austin checking out patient Justin's eyes (or is the other way around??)

So much to do and see!

Thanks for hanging out with us guys . . . hope to see you next month.

Sunday, July 13, 2008

Two Months

Yesterday marked two months of waiting for our referral. Not bad. I think the time has gone by fairly fast and I'm keeping busy enough that I don't think about it every second of the day. That helps.

We got an email from our agency this past week telling us of a rather big change in Ethiopia. They've acquired a brand new, seven bedroom baby house in Addis Ababa that has 40 cribs in it. The reason this is so exciting is because now they will have room for more babies and they're hoping that this will speed up the timelines for all of us waiting for babies. This is definitely encouraging news . . . although I'm still counting on receiving our referral sometime at the beginning of 2009. That way I shouldn't be disappointed.

Thursday, July 10, 2008

The Cottage

We played, swam, fished, went boating, slept, ate, drank . . . and were merry!

One day last week we got a call from Mike’s parents saying that there was a cancellation at a cottage in the park where they live. So we took advantage of it and in less than 24 hours were packed and on our way. And by the way, that’s no small feat for two adults and three children! But despite a chaotic few hours or more getting ready, we were glad we went. We had a lot of fun and the best part was seeing how excited the kids were. We were so busy everyday and pretty much every waking hour was spent outside in the fresh air that they all slept really well at night too, which is always a bonus when you’re away and no one is in their own bed.

Here are some pictures of the girls swimming in the pool. All three kids are getting more and more comfortable and confident in the water. They just started swimming lessons yesterday so that should help as well.

Samara’s favourite part of the cottage was the boats. She loved watching them go by on the lake and was thrilled every time we went for a ride in Grandpa’s boat.

Watching the kids fish was my favourite part of the cottage this time. They had so much fun catching sunfish off the dock. They were pulling them in one after the other and once they got over the initial fear of pulling in a real live fish that would flop around wildly, they enjoyed it. Victoria and Austin had fishing poles from Christmas two years ago but Samara didn’t have one. So for the first day or two she just used Mikes but there was the fear of her dropping it into the water. And of course she couldn’t just sit there and watch. After all, if her big brother and sister were fishing . . . then she needed to as well! We went into town on day three and got her her very own Dora fishing pole. It even floats if it accidentally falls into the water. She was tickled pink and caught a fish the second she dropped it into the water. When Mike tried to take it off the hook to throw it back into the water, she started screaming, “mine! mine!” She was not impressed that she didn’t get to touch it. She even made a kissing sound with her lips to indicate she wanted to give it a kiss. Too cute! Between the three of them though, Mike and I were hopping – continuously putting new worms on the hooks and taking fish off. What a blast!


When he caught this fish, he said, “hey look, he’s eating salad!”


Here’s my man on the dock – I think he’s trying to keep up with the kids. No such luck though.

Here’s a nice bird that came by the dock once in a while to say hi.

A few nights Grandma came over to the cottage and kicked us out. :) Once the kids were all tucked in, she offered to stay at the cottage to babysit so Mike and I could go out for a boat ride and some fishing. Mike caught one decent sized bass but other than a few bites, that was it.

All in all it was a great vacation. Nice to get away and not to worry about the everyday tasks and routine. Barry and Peggy (Grandpa and Grandma) even cooked dinner for us every night so it truly was a vacation!

Thursday, July 03, 2008

Canada Day

We spent part of Canada Day at "Family Fun Day" at a place nearby our house. We've done this before and the kids always have a lot of fun. This time Mike and Tammy joined us for the fun. Victoria and Austin got to jump in the bouncy castle but unfortunately Samara was too little. (Our camera had smudgy fingerprints on the lens and I didn't realize it until this morning when I downloaded the pictures - thus the blurry spot on all the pictures!)

Samara was just as happy to play on the slide.

We all enjoyed a nice relaxing wagon ride.

Samara's favourite part of the day was riding on the miniature horse. She was grinning from ear to ear.

"Look at me mom!"Victoria and Austin also enjoyed the ride.

We came back to our place afterwards where my mom joined us for dinner. Mike once again outdid himself with the meal - steak, potatoes, stuffed peppers, salad . . . yummy! The weather was gorgeous, the company was delightful - what more could we ask for?