Brickman’s Picnic!

One of the events I look forward to each summer is the picnic put on by Bob an Marilyn Brickman. This picnic is for the families who have adopted from South Korea through Children’s Bridge – and lucky for us, it is located about 10 minutes from our house. We went again this past Saturday, it was the fourth time we have been able to attend. I love going and seeing all the little boys and girls as they grow up – especially Alex’s “Seoul Siblings”! Luckily this year, most of our group were able to attend.  There was Barb, Andy, Daniel and Matthew, Belinda, Steve, Adam and Benny, Emily, Jeremy, Xander and Belle, and us.

Like last year, the boys flocked to the pond in search for fish and frogs. Daniel even picked up a few!

Saturday also happened to be little Isabelle (Belle)’s birthday! She turned two so all the kids celebrated with cupcakes.

The mommas had a nice group shot – thanks to Andy our photographer.

We then attempted a kids group shot… well. You know how difficult that can be!

I’m hoping one of the other moms has better shot…

We missed you Karen, Kevin & Lucas – hope we see you again soon! Thanks Bob and Marilyn!

 

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Happy (belated) Canada Day!

A week ago was Canada Day – as normal I’m a tad late. That’s the way I’ve been rolling lately, but that’s ok. As long as things get done right?

Anyhow, Matt was up north at our property on Canada Day, so Alex and I hit the town with family and friends for the local Canada Day festivities. We normally are up at Matt’s parents cottage on Canada Day so this was a real treat. We had lots of fun. First off, we went downtown with my mom for the street party. There were food vendors, kids activities, live music and various awards. Alex got a balloon dog, ice cream, and we had some Kens French Fries (some of the best fries around!). We also sat and watched some local musicians, including Loreena McKennitt who sang O Canada.  On the way back to our car we saw another famous star – Christopher Plummer! He also lives in town seasonally for the festival.

On the way home Alex fell asleep, which was a good thing – I needed some time to prepare a salad for the bbq at our friend Cathy and Ryan’s place that we were headed to. I ended up having to wake Alex up – I know, something you should never do!, but we were running late. At Cathy & Ryan’s we had a swim and a really nice bbq. We all then had to rush to our friends Sarah & Jeremy’s for the parade! (yes, we were running late – again!). The kids had a blast at the parade. It was short and sweet, but enough entertainment (and treats) for four year olds.

After the parade, the kids played and did some sparklers. When it was dusk, we all raced back to Cathy and Ryan’s to see the fireworks! Got there just in time for the start. It was a perfect end to a wonderful day.

Happy Canada Day!

Toronto!

Last Saturday (the 8th), Alex and went on an adventure to Toronto. You may be thinking – you live close to Toronto, what sort of big adventure can that really be? Well – I’ll explain.

First of all we had to drive on the 401- the highway that I used to have to take anti anxiety meds to ride on. It is one of Canada’s worst highways. So I was a tad nervous – especially after Alex decided he didn’t want to watch his DVD player – I though this is going to be tough – but it wasn’t . Now I’m actually looking forward to another trip into the city for some shopping 🙂  I wasn’t planning on driving right into Toronto – instead I was going to Yorkdale shopping centre where we could grab the subway down to Queen Street… where I was meeting Michelle, Amanda, Christa, and their families!!! Yes – it was a blogging mommies meetup!

So – got to Yorkdale – no problems. After a quick bathroom break, Alex and I headed to the subway… which turns out isn’t very accessible when you have a stroller. So we got there – got our day pass, and lucky for us the train was in the station! So we got on and sat down. And waited… and waited… then the announcer came on to tell us that due to a “police investigation at Lawrence Station, we were not able to move”… what?! I figured it may only be a few minutes, so we waited.  and waited. After about 10 more minutes Alex started getting antsy. A nice young lady sitting by us started  chatting – she was going on about how cute Alex was (he really is, isn’t he?).  Then the power went off. There was now a power outage and we were asked to evacuate the train. WTH? So, with Alex crying, we exited the train. The young lady and I were still chatting and I joked that if she knew where to go I’d drive downtown. She said sure! Another young lady overhead and asked where we were going – I told her down to Queen St and asked if she wanted to come along – and she also said yes (she had pastries to share). So I picked up two complete strangers and drove them down to Queen Street. They were super nice girls – and they were probably thinking – this girl is pretty naive…  But hey – I had to get where I needed to be!  So finally we arrived downtown – just 45 min late – not too bad considering how late I would have been if I had waited for the shuttle bus that was to be dispatched.

[The reason for the police investigation was a reported unattended bag… which conveniently was never found]

It was so nice to finally meet Michelle, Amanda, their kids and their husbands – all who I’ve heard so much about on their blogs and Facebook. But it was also nice to meet Amanda’s friend Christa and her family. We went to Riverdale Farm (via subway and street car – neither very accessible so thank you to the dads who helped me lift Alex in his stroller!), went to a diner called Ginger for some asian food, and back to a park for some play. Then back to the hotel where everyone was staying and we said goodbye. Within 5 minutes of being in the car, Alex was out, and slept until we were just about 20 min from home. Not bad, not bad.  Next time Matt will have to come and we will have to stay over!

One problem. I didn’t get a group shot of the moms!! I did get this one of the kids though – they are not looking at the camera – but they were looking in the same general direction 😉

Colin, Alex, Brandon and Poppy catching a wave.

Our Little Flock

Yesterday we were lucky to go visit a rare miniature pet farm that was having an open house. There were rare sheep, goats, chickens, pigs, donkeys, llamas – and lots of tractors.  We went with one of Alex’s best friends – Henry. Henry lives down the street from us so we luckily get to have lots of playdates. Alex and Henry ran from pen to pen, and Alex ran from tractor to tractor… sadly Henry wasn’t too keen of the tractors. Unfortunately I was trying to be cool and use my camera at a more advanced stage than I should, and the depth of focus was off more than I would have liked, but a few pics did turn out.

I know Alex doesn’t actually look happy – but he was! He was just awed by all that was going on around him!

 

Oh Canada…

Has it really been almost 3 weeks since Canada Day? Yikes!

We had a great Canada Day 2011 this year. The weather was [finally] beautiful and we made the most of it – especially since it was Alex’s first Canada Day as a Canadian!! We went to a bbq at our friends Sarah & Jeremy’s place and then walked over to the Canada Day parade.

The nice thing for our group of friends is that the majority of us all have kids in the 3 year old range, making it a lot of fun for the little ones, and we get to sit back and catch up (perhaps over a cocktail or two…).  We don’t have a chance to get together as much as we would like, but when we do it is always a great time.

Alex and one of his best buds Blair playing in the sand.

Did I mention it was purple sand? Poor Harrison!

High tailing it to the parade

Sarah (and baby Jude), Steph, Moi, and Cathy at the parade

My new favourite family picture (photo by Stephanie)

Candy eating time (hiding their stash from their parents)

The End of the Week

Phew – no diseases have shown up!  No Fifths and no Hand, Foot, and Mouth disease in our house!! Thank goodness! 

On other news – we have a walker!! On Thursday night Alex really stated to take a lot of solo steps.  For the past few weeks it has only been maybe 2 or 3 steps here or there – but on Thursday night, he was standing beside his rocking chair, looked at me, giggled and then walked half way across his bedroom to me! I was so proud!  I really have to stop getting all excited and squeeling as he walks – I think it is scaring him and causing him to stop.  Ooops!   This weekend I will try to get video and post it for viewing.

We also have molars coming in.  I discovered that this morning when he stuck my finger in his mouth and bit – and I think that is why he was up at 2:30, 3:30, 4:30, 5:30… you get the picture.  Tonight I will be much better prepared!

When Alex wants something he makes this cute caveman type grunt and stares at the item he wants – then he looks at you – and does it again.  So on Thursday he kept grunting and staring at the apple I was cutting pieces from for him.  So I gave it to him – just to see what he would do.  And the little stinker ate most of the apple!!

Yumm... Apple!

Yumm... Apple!

Yesterday we also had a short but fun play date with 3 of my gal friends Cathy, Steph, and Andrea and their babes.  We went to a small park a couple of blocks away.  Their kids are almost 2, while Alex being just 1, so he went on the slides and ate sand while the other 3 ran around and had lots of fun.  It is amazing to see how far Alex will be in just a few months!  Unfortunately the camera had something on the lens, so I’m stealing Steph’s pictures – hope you don’t mind Steph!

Yumm... Sand!

Yumm... Sand!

harrison&blair

Harrison and Blair

And then this morning I discovered that I won the Mystery Shopping Spree at BriarClaire on Etsy!! BriarClaire is an Etsy shop founded by two fellow adoptive mommies – Shelley from A Sister for the Bean and Kelly from Life with Briar.  They sell fabulous hair clips and headbands for girls of all ages!!  Shelley has another giveaway on her blog – don’t miss out on it!  The giveaway closes at 11:59pm on Tuesday May 12. 

And today is Birth Mother Day.  Tonight we will be once again talking to little Alex about his birth mother and his foster mother – two very important women in his life.  They are both such strong women who have made such sacrifices and have given so much of themselves so that Alex can have the new life he does.  It is really quite amazing and heart wrenching – they will always be remembered in our family.

Birthdays

Today Alex is 6 months old!  We wish so much that he was home with us… or at least we were in Korea with him…  But, instead we will be sending him a care package this week.  So far there is a pair of pj’s, a onesie, a wacky wabbit weirdo (that I made), a cloth book that we can insert pictures of us into, and we will be getting some disposable cameras that hopefully the foster family will use for us.  Our paperwork was mailed out on Friday, and will be processed on Wednesday.  We are anticipating to travel for Alex in early January.

My birthday is also coming up this week, and last night my friends and I went out for dinner.  It was really nice to see (almost) everyone together again – it has been a while! 

From the left – Me, Sarah, Suzanne, Cathy, Beth, and Melinda.  My lovely friends gave me a baby food grinder and a picture frame with a quote written on the matting “A mother holds her children’s hands for just a little while, but their hearts forever”.  Sarah is going to take a pic of Alex holding my finger for the frame.   So sweet!

Quilting

For the last few months I have been working on and off on a baby quilt made with Amy Butler’s pink lotus fabric.  I was thinking it would be a quilt for our baby if it turns out to be a girl.  Well, I have a better use for it.  Turns out one of my house mates from University is pregnant!  Laura and I lived together for 3 years and you know how life is, you tend to grow apart.  It wasn’t until I was out walking with Sarah a couple of weeks ago, who was also a university house mate, that I discovered this exciting news.

So of course, I sent an e-mail right away and got the scoop.  She is due in November, but unfortunately is having a scheduled C section at the end of September.  Seems that during the ultrasounds the doctors discovered a 5cm mass of cells on her intestine and they cannot determine what it is.  So, the early C-section is to prevent the baby from getting too large and putting pressure on the lump.  And since the baby is going to be a girl… I thought this quilt would be a perfect gift. 

Here is the final product.  (I was home sick from work today – the Library Cold – and thought binding the quilt would be the best watching tv past time).