Friday, November 23, 2007

E- Otters

I know it's a pretty weak blog to put up optical illusions......and it was not really meant as a commentary on whether I have being seeing visions of Jesus lately....but we have been having a nice relaxing week with not too much going on. I have gotten back to playing hockey and basketball after taking a month off when I chipped a bone in my wrist. Our hockey game was pretty ugly. We played against the best team in the league with only 6 players and half a goalie. Maybe that's a bit harsh but he did let in the first 2 shots of the night, which is a bad omen when you know your team is only going to get more tired and give up more opportunities as the game goes on. After not skating for 5 weeks I could barely move my legs by the end of the game. The goalie was probably thinking he didn't have a chance playing for a team with only 5 1/2 players!

Les is doing some more writing work but it is always a challenge to find the time get it done. Surprisingly, it's not that easy to write with a very active 11 month old boy and his two sweet, but sometimes demanding sisters around. As self sufficient
as they can be, it is hard to go very long without a demand for more juice or help with a game that's too high on the shelf. With a light work schedule, I tried to get Les some time to write. I took Molly to school a couple of times, and though we were never late, we often seemed to walking at a brisk pace to make it. I would hate to be responsible for Molly's first detention.

We went to the pool a couple of times as well. The kids love it and I am able to get some exercise doing pool running while they float around in the warm wading pool. Because I am not right beside them supervising, I usually make them wear life jackets. On Tuesday I went for a half hour run and watched as they played in a pool full of children about their age. They seemed oblivious to the rest of the action in the pool as they took turns floating each other around on their backs for the whole time. Curious as to how they remained so calm and focussed floating on their backs amid all the splashing and playing, I asked them what they were playing. Apparently they were taking turns being otters.

Yesterday we left Les at home while we took a trip to Science world and Home Depot. Here are some pictures of the more successful part of the trip. At Home Depot I had the usual hassle of trying to find things in a massive store that is poorly labeled and where the majority of staff seem to know little and care less. When we did eventually find what we were looking for it dawned on me that I didn't have my credit card. Despite the fact that they sell over the internet as well as making phone sales (neither of which require the actual credit card to be scanned) wife was on the phone with my credit card and driver's license numbers ...... and I had my passport in my hand at the customer service desk....there was no way Home Depot was going to let a shady character like me, with his three kids stuffed so carelessly into a shopping cart, get away with a $60 purchase. I eventually gave up and went home.

Monday, November 19, 2007

If you take a look at the following picture , let me tell you it is not animated. Your eyes are making it move. To test this, stare at one spot for a couple seconds and everything will stop moving. Or look at the black center of each circle and it will stop moving. But move your eyes to the next black center and the previous will move after you take your eyes away from it.... Weird

Sunday, November 18, 2007

Mini, mini, mini (mini) holiday

We only went to Point Roberts yesterday, but we returned to town tonight looking and feeling fifteen years younger. No. That is a total lie, but it was a really nice break and it did feel like a true get-away.

We sat around the fire and read. We ate well. We played, sang and walked. Here are some pictures from today at Lighthouse Park:

Just in case you are wondering, the one with Molly and Finny sitting at the top of the slide...they are pretending to be pirates. Otherwise, well...that would just be a weird picture. And maybe it is, but ARRRRGH anyway. Shiver me timb...I think you catch my drift.
Eric was in a semi-hurry to get back for hockey tonight, so on our way home, we stopped for dinner at Cambie Village. In an effort to welcome back the incensed and irritated ex-customers of the area (I say that because I was one of them. I mean seriously, has anyone tried to PARK in that neighbourhood? Driving through is bad enough), the Canada Line footed the bill for hundreds of $20 gift certificates to be distributed locally. We used ours this evening at Spice, a Vietnamese restaurant. It was a terrific meal. Thank you Canada Line (said in the whiny monotone reserved for parents, teachers and...over-budget public transportation projects?). And we only had to walk five blocks back to the car. It was a good way to burn off those spring rolls.

See, don't I look fifteen years younger? No? Jerks.

Friday, November 16, 2007

Don't ask if you can't handle the answer...

The temporary exhibit at Science World just recently changed. All summer, Grossology was there...this was a display devoted to the nasty functions of the human body. Molly hated it. Big time. You know how some people threaten kids with the Boogeyman? If Molly was misbehaving, an ideal threat was time spent in Grossology. She despised every component, finding them all distasteful and stinky. Every time we mentioned Science World, she felt compelled to illicit a promise from everyone going with us that the Grossology room was to be avoided by each member of the visiting party. No exceptions. Finny, who wasn't a fan of the exhibit either, became a fan...just because it drove Molly crazy: "Yeah Molly, me might go in there..."

So, we eagerly awaited the switch to something new. And it finally happened. Today was our first time going back since the new exhibit opened. Unfortunately, it still deals with the human body, but not with the sole purpose of disgusting the viewer. We were optimistic.

One of the very first things we did in the new exhibit was try out this very cool software that takes a photo of you, then ages you. Fun, right?

Molly went first. Then, when confronted by her 70 year-old face, she started to quiver. She put her hand over the screen and wouldn't look any more. With her palm still pressed against the picture, she turned to me and said, "How do I not make this my face? How????!!!"

Well. If I knew the answer to that, Estee Lauder would be beating a path to my door. Lamely, I told her to wear sunscreen and drink lots of water. Since then, I have been treated to a machine gun of questions about aging. I have been trying to tell her that only the lucky get old, but I suspect the finer and more philosophical points of the benefits of wrinkles are lost on her for now. Walking back to the car, she kept asking me for water. I kept telling her there was a water bottle in the stroller. After she asked for the tenth time, I blurted out, "I've told you a million times. Why don't you listen? In the stroller! IN THE STROLLER!!"

I was met with this: "Why don't you listen to me? I have told you a hundred times. Not this water...water for MY LIFE. For my WRINKLES!" Wow.

She eventually told us that she wished she could erase the picture from her head. She wished she had never seen it.

Anyone know when Grossology is coming back to town?

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

E- Storm season

We had another major storm over the long weekend, similar to some of our big ones last year but with a warmer, Southernly wind. If this is the early signs of what we can expect from climate change we have some big problems coming. We were without power for about 18 hours down in Point Roberts, so we pulled out candles and board games. Around noon we went for a drive to see the downed trees and powerlines and to check out the waves pounding on the beach. By the next day the wind we were out riding in the sunshine and Finny found a fun new game...riding her bike in the skateboard park.

Saturday, November 10, 2007

E- Phoenix

You Snooze, You Lose

So here's the deal. Finny isn't exactly the best eater in the world. She is downright picky. Gee, I wonder where she gets that from...ERIC? And just when I think I have her figured out and there is some surefire food that she will actually eat, she keeps it fresh by changing her repertoire. Yesterday she liked grapes. Today they make her gag. For throwing up in her mouth. Tomorrow? Probably back on the grape train.

Three nights ago when I was making dinner, my wee gourmet wandered into the kitchen and asked what was on the menu (the word menu implies choice, which of course, there is not). I informed her, whereupon she threw a mini tantrum that we weren't having shrimp and mushrooms. Huh? I have no idea where that came from, but she was devastated. I told her that the next day the Shrimp Fairy may come for dinner. Then I promptly forgot.

The next night...same deal. We were having hamburgers and little girl was crushed that the shrimp fairy bailed on her. I promised anew. And immediately forgot...again.

Last night, we had steak. The tears welled up and suddenly we had A THING. Blubbering and sobbing laced with a chant of "Shrimp...mushrooms...shrimp". I felt pretty bad.

So tonight? When Finny came home from swimming with Molly and Eric, I informed her that her time had come. I started dinner and she commenced a five minute check-up schedule..."dinner ready?"..."shrimp done?"..."all cooked Mumma?". The kid was psyched....right...up...until........she fell asleep in the middle of the living room floor. Now she is upstairs tucked in her bed. Molly and I enjoyed our shrimp and mushrooms. I'll pack some up in Tupperware and little Fin can have a Surf and Turf breakfast.

E- Lesley likes Jerome

On Saturday we woke up to a clear sky and the temperature in the low 90's. Although the pool was tempting us to stay put all day, having a borderline translucent toddler out in the sun and inches away from drowning made us think twice about it. Instead we spent an hour by the pool and then headed for the hills. In less than an hour driving North from Phoenix, the temperature drops by 15 degrees and pockets of green can be found. We stopped briefly in Prescott, Jerome and Sedona. They were all charming in their own way and worth a return trip one day.

Lucas, one day you'll be reading this, no doubt having gotten into your share of trouble. I can tell you though for at least one day of your life you were pretty close to the perfect son. We drove about 7 hours on this day, with barely a stop let alone a diaper change (I think the hot dry weather took care of that). You didn't cry once and were a big part of making this day a positive way

Thursday, November 8, 2007

E- Congratulations

Lesley may not be a very consistent blogger.....but I can't fault her much for wanting to spend quality time with the kids rather than writing about it. However she is such a good writer that I encourage her to find the time to write whenever she can. A great example of that is this writing contest she entered last month.

Should the weather turn ugly, you might get started on your entry for the Courier's 12th Annual Fiction Contest. Entries can be on any topic, must be a maximum of 2,500 words and include the sentence, "From Kerrisdale to Cedar Cottage, Shirley's name was on every one's lips: she had been featured in the Courier's 100th Anniversary edition." The first 125 entries are accepted and the deadline is Oct. 23. First prize is $1,000. For more info, go to

At the last minute, Les decided to write a story and enter the contest. With little time and 3 kids to contend with (I was at work for the last 2 days before the deadline), Les somehow managed to not only complete the piece but also beat out some really great competition. Last night someone from the paper called with the news that she won first place and her story will be in the 100th Anniversary edition. The ease with which Les is able to write and tell a good story amazes me. Some times I don't even think she fully appreciates how skilled she is because it's not her style to be that self analytical. Therefore receiving this external recognition of her skills is pretty special and should really be savoured. Congratulations Les, you're great.

I spent the day "riding third" on a BC Ambulance. We had some interesting calls and I learned lots, including how to put in an IV. However, the biggest lesson from today that will stick in my head is....don't get sick in Surrey.....the hospital is a madhouse and you will wait for ever.

Tuesday, November 6, 2007

E- On the road again

When I used to daydream about being a part of a record setting event, I was usually hitting 20 three pointers in a row or performing some superhuman feat. Never did I dream about the weather in Phoenix. Having said that, it was kind of exciting to be in the city for the hottest (95 degrees or 35 celsius) November 5th on record.

On Thursday night I went to a firefighting test for West Vancouver before coming home to pack and get a couple of hours rest. At 1am , with the girls already at my Mom's, Les, Lucas and I headed for the airport in Seattle. Our 5:20am flight got us to Phoenix by 8, giving us a couple of hours to kill before check in to our hotel. So we did what everybody there seems to do....we picked up some fast food and headed to the mall. I don't exactly have a big frame but I know I would put on some serious size if there was a Sonic and Taco Bell within a couple blocks of our house. The 44 ounce real fruit slush you can buy for 90 cents is too much to resist, especially when you don't need to leave your air conditioned car to get it.

Pleasantly surprised by our room at the Legacy golf resort we all drifted off to sleep for a couple of hours rest before the game started.

On the way to the game, we picked up John and Gerald at their hotel. We soon parted ways though.....we entered on tickets that we bought on the internet....they used ones that Steve Nash had left at the door. It's tough to complain however when we sat the whole second half in Steve's parents seats just behind the bench in row 7. As apparently is Sun's tradition, the home opener wasn't their best game, losing by 30 to the Lakers. It hardly mattered though as we got to see a good game by Steve and then enjoy a warm evening drive in new (to me at least) city full of adventure and Sonic drive-ins.