Over the last few weeks we have been able to get out and enjoy some of Ontario’s winter wonderland. I wish I could say we enjoyed the outdoors more throughout the winter – but the temps have been pretty extreme – either really cold or mild and mucky. When it has been somewhat decent, we have made the best of it.
Alex has enjoyed playing in his tree fort…
We had fun making a snowman (within a few days he was gone due to a warm spell)
And during March Break, we went up north to the cottage and enjoyed sledding – in the middle of the lake (Mush Momma!), down a small hill for Alex, and Matt and I went down Hazard Hill (yes – as scary – and fun – as it sounds!)
While we have had some fun… I am done with winter. Done done done. Are you with me?
Yesterday Alex and I had a date at a local Touch a Truck event. Can you believe that this was our first Touch a Truck? We had so much fun.
First things first – the Ambulances.
Then the Fire Trucks… where he got to put on the lights and siren.
We did the big rigs, tractors, combines, school bus, crane, hot air balloon, and cement mixer…. but…
It was all about the Ambulances.
Alex was lucky enough to turn on the sirens and lights on the Emergency Support Unit too. He was in awe.
Can’t wait to do this again!
This evening, Alex and I carved our pumpkin. I asked him what type of pumpkin he wanted – he decided he wanted a scary pumpkin. So we looked at a few scary pumpkin pics online – luckily Alex picked out one that was fairly simple. Alex’s job was to clean the pumpkin out – he wasn’t too keen on the guck on his hands – but he go the job done.
Over a week ago, my friend Hayley and I took our boys to Shantzholm Family Farm. I took Alex there last year (on a much nicer day). We went early one morning, mid-week, so the wagon rides were not running, and turns out the pumpkin patch was turned into a corn maze this year, so the kids played in the kiddie maze and checked out the animals. I picked up some hay (very messy I might say), and a number of gourds for the craft show as entry way decor. It was way too early to get a real pumpkin – that adventure is still to come.
Cute photo take 1
Cute photo take 5
Cute photo take ... oh I give up.
One last effort for a cute pic - not too bad.
At least this guy somewhat cooperated - isn't he cute!
Yesterday I decided to go for it – I bought fingerpaint. I remember how much fun fingerpainting was when I was little… but I also remember it as being a tad messy. But I bit the bullet and bought some tubes and let Alex have his fun. He was a little hesitant about putting his fingers in the paint – in the end he put his whole hand in… oh well!
I’ve been so happy to get back in a routine these last 2 weeks. Alex is going to the sitters daily again and Matt’s back to work. I’ve been trying to get up about 15min earlier than everyone else to give me a few minutes alone to actually wake up and settled before the morning madness begins. I find it really helps in putting me in a better mood… Eventually I plan on waking up about 45 min early so I can go for a nice walk with Mason first thing… but little steps, little steps.
Fall and Summer are duking it out around here. One day it is hot (like 40C with the humidity) and the next it’s not… tonight it will be a chilly 8C overnight… gotta break out the long johns. The one nice thing is that the leaves will start to really change… must book a photographer… would love some family pics done this year (another thing for my ever growing to do list).
Last weekend we headed down to the Upper Queens park for a playdate with Henry, Alex’s besty. When we arrived, we noticed two boys we know were also there – and they too have been adopted from Korea. It was so sweet. They treated Alex and his friend like little brothers – teaching them new games and racing around the park. It didn’t matter that Alex is just 3 and they are 7 & 9 (I think) – they are truly good kids and I think they will be great friends for Alex to look up to.
Alex has been really enjoying the last batch of books I brought home:
I Love My White Shoes by Eric Litwin (finally read it!!), I’m the Biggest Thing in the Ocean by Kevin Sherry, My Mommy Hung the Moon by Jamie Lee Curtis (a fav of mine too) and Charlie the Ranch Dog by Ree Drummond (The Pioneer Woman).
Things are really coming together for the craft show (yeah!) – just under 3 weeks away – so nervous and excited at the same time.
I have been putting together some crafting / storytime sites for some of our library programmers and thought I’d share some favs – they can be used on a personal level for sure.: No Time for Flashcards, Storytime Secrets, Roving Fiddlehead.
I’m trying to finally get things up on the walls in our house (we only moved a 18 montyhs ago…) My problem is that I can’t decide on anything… very frustrating. Anyone want to come help 😉
I feel like a bad momma of a Korean child… I forgot about Cheusok… When the waves of weekend madness calm down, I plan on cooking up a feast… so, probably won’t happen until mid October – the weekend after Canadian Thanksgiving. I am praying A’s hanbok still fits.
On Saturday I took out the library a number of books on science type activities for toddlers. I have been wanting to expand on the activities we do with Alex with some educational type projects. While browsing Sandbox Scientist by Michael E. Ross, I found a cool project that we had done before, although I didn’t realize its official name of oobleck. If you haven’t made oobleck before, I’ll warn you – it’s messy – but it is fun and well worth the mess!
The science part of this project is that it encourages kids to explore the differences between liquids and solids.
To make oobleck, simply get a large bowl or a tray, and mix a cup of water to a cup of cornstarch. You can add food colouring if you like – but to me that makes it much messier. You mix them so that you get a mixture that is both dry and liquid all at once. Stick your hands in, grab a handful, which will feel solid, and then watch it drip from your hands – such a cool feeling!
I highly recommend doing this outside if possible, or on a vinyl tablecloth like we did. I wish I had pics… but I was having too much fun getting messy as well! Here is a flashback picture of Alex with his first oobleck experience.
Note: while it was messy, it wasn't nearly as messy this time around.
On Tuesday Alex and I had another date – this one to Storybook Gardens! We were supposed to double date with Emily, Jeremy and Xander, but unfortunately X was under the weather (feel better little man!). It was a HOT HOT day, but luckily there was a lot of shade and a lot of water features to cool off in. We went on the giant jungle gyms (shaped like boats which were a huge hit), saw the ducks, the donkeys, played in the splash pad, and saw the sea lions. unfortunately Humpty Dumpty was under construction (he must really have had a fall), and he was unavailable for viewing. But most importantly we go to go on a little train that went around Springbank Park. That was I’m sure Alex’s highlight of the day. We are hoping to go again later this summer or early Fall with E & X, so I’m sure it will be even more fun then!
We had gone last year, but most of the activities were way too mature for Alex (except the water park) – Last year at SBG
This year at SBG
I discovered how difficult it is to take good pictures when you are at this sort of place alone. I do however have many pictures of Alex “driving boats” (aka boa ).
(and from later in the day)
I think Alex truly enjoyed himself. I can tell firstly because within a few minutes of leaving Alex was fast asleep for our whole ride home. And secondly – because of this smile.
One of the nice things about having a young child is that you get to visit all the fun destinations you enjoyed as a child. On Friday, Matt and I took Alex to African Lion Safari, which was something we both enjoyed as kids. If you live in South Western Ontario – it is a must visit. What the African Lion Safari is an animal park where you are caged up (you get to drive around or take the Safari bus like we did). You get VERY close to the animals – baboons literally jump on your car and the ostriches will peck at their reflection in your car windows thinking they are getting food. The ostrich is not a smart bird. The animals live in large reserves where they get to roam free. There is also a splash pad (Yeah! It was over 30C that day), a boat ride, a train ride, and other various attractions. We went with some friends who have a little guy just a few months younger than Alex, and that made it even more fun.
Smile! On the bus venturing out on our Safari.
Who ran over my lunch? (told you we were close)
Hayley, Henry & Randy
A leisurely boat cruise - to check out some monkeys.
Time to get WET!
Weee!!! It was hot, I didn't mind at all!
Now, have you ever had one of those moments where you feel like you are a horrible parent? We had one just after the splash pad. I thought it could be fun to go on the little train that took you to the camels and various other animals. Alex is a HUGE fan of trains right now. He makes everything and anything into a train, and watches Th*mas the Train every chance he gets. Mind you he doesn’t like brushing his teeth with his Thomas toothpaste… but that is a different issue. So, we go to the train line and it is long… like a 30 minute plus wait, it was very hot – and it was well into nap time. So we decided let’s forget it and just go home. Everything would have been fine… but as we were walking away the train rolled into the station. Alex freaked. He cried. He screamed. He tried to crawl out of his stroller. We felt horrible. All this little guy wants is to go on a train and we failed. It WILL happen next week at Storybook Gardens (right E!).
On Saturday we travelled to Grimsby to meet up with the three other families that we have gotten to know who have adopted from South Korea. We went to Barbara and Andy’s place, they are the parents of Daniel, and also there were Belinda and Steve, parents of Adam and the brand new baby Benjamin, and Karen and Kevin, parents of Lucas. The four of us all brought home our boys within 4 months of one another. We had a lot of fun – as always! It is so cool being able to see the boys grow. The first time they were just all trying to walk. The second time they were walking, but not quite talking or running. Now they are all over the place! There are so many similarities between the boys. All of the boys are on the verge of talking – but still lots of grunting and pointing going on. They all throw their food (which made me feel a lot better!). And the parents are just worn right out (in a very good way). It was also really exciting to meet Benjamin – the newest addition to Belinda and Steve’s family. Ben arrived just 3 weeks ago and I was lucky enough to hold him for a little while. He is so small!
I unfortunately forgot my camera (and Alex’s shoes) in the rush out the door – but I “borrowed” some pics from the other parents. Enjoy!
Checking out Daniel's Truck
Lucas, Alex, Adam and Daniel
And… Alex slept in until 9am the next morning!! Woo Hoo!! Guess the boys wore him out! (either that or he was tired from being up from 12 – 2am on hours Friday night)…