Friday, August 25, 2006

Cute Kid Stuff

Char got stung by a wasp on her upper lip today. She now looks like I took her for discount lip injections. Poor little monkey. She can still suck her thumb, so she is not totally traumatized. I am playing nurse-mommy and must check on her constantly to make sure it is only her lip that is swelling. Daddy will be bringing baby antihistamines home so I will be able to sleep tonight, and not keep constant vigil at her bedside. I have been calling her Angelina all afternoon.

While we were at the park she stood up unassisted on her blanket until my friend and I noticed, and then she dropped to her knees. I think walking is just around the corner.

She is turning into a little mimic. If you say "Hello" like you are answering the phone she will hold whatever toy she has in her hand up to her ear and say "Ah-Ooo". She also barks at dogs and cats. We missed this stage with Emmett so I am having a blast with it now. Hearing someone in the house say Ma Ma and Da Da is wonderful!

Emm now has the manual dexterity to remove the tiny screws holding the battery doors in place on some of his toys. Am I living with a future neurosurgeon? I taught him how to use my camera last night, so I am anxious to get the film developed to see how he does with photography. I am a favourite subject. The blue spots in front of my eyes are just beginning to fade.

Emmett helped me make pancakes for breakfast this morning and cracked the egg in a bowl and did not get any shells in, then he measured the dry ingredients for me. He is just so observant and can master new skills so quickly. His communication is improving, even if he isn't speaking English yet. His body language is getting more and more expressive and he is making up his own signs.

Tuesday, August 22, 2006

Some Random Pictures from the Past Two Weeks

Hi Honey, We're Home!

We are finally back and home and getting settled into our regular routine after a whirlwind two weeks.

The kids had a blast at Grandpa Rick and Nana Holly's and now have a standing invitation to visit for a week every summer. Char almost grew gills and fins she spent so much time in Nana's pool. Emmett hung out with Uncle Devon and learned how to play Game Cube.

Richard and I spent the last couple days of our trip taking it easy. We swam in the Bay of Fundy at Shediac beach, which was cold but absolutely wonderful. We also spent a day with our friends Ross and Cynthia. The morning was spent at Hopewell Rocks then Cynthia and I went shoe shopping. The day was capped off with dinner at our new favourite hangout, The Pumphouse Brewery. I sampled blueberry ale, and Richard finally found chicken wings hot enough to satisfy him.

Upon arriving home with tired and slightly more tanned children, we dropped our bags on the floor and repacked to go Up North to Manitoba Farm Girl's wedding party.

Richard helped my mom with the kids while I attended to assorted bridesmaid duties, then it was back in the van for the trip back home. We found out the hard way that Emmett now suffers from carsickness on long road trips. We also found out he responds well to Gravol.

My friend Janelle followed us home from Up North so we had a little slumber party at my house before she had to drive to Winnipeg to pick up her husband at the airport. We haven't hung out in two years since she moved to BC, so the time we spent together was precious.

Sunday, August 13, 2006

Greetings from Rainy PEI

We drove over Confederation Bridge onto Prince Edward Island yesterday. When we left the only plan we had was to avoid anything related to Anne of Green Gables.

That is how we ended up driving all along Malpeque Bay and up to Port Hill to wander around a museum built at an old ship building yard. The home of the ship builder had been restored and there were even friendly guides dressed in period-appropriate costumes to tell us about the artifacts in the house. We also learned how ships were built and looked at a blacksmith and carpentry shop on the shore of the bay.

We backtracked a bit and headed over to New Glasgow because we heard that is where the best lobster dinners could be found. We lined up (always a good sign), chose our beast and waited in a boisterous dining room for our feast. A bucket of mussels and a basket of homemade rolls was placed on our table for an appetizer with bowls of seafood chowder on the side. Next came salads, then the giant red crustaceaon. We had our choice of 5 different kinds of pie, three different kinds of cake and several flavours of icecream for dessert. The only thing you couldn't have seconds of was the lobster. The atmosphere and food reminded me of a big church supper. The potato salad was to die for. My internet buddy Susan was right when she said we would roll out of the restaurant. We spent some time in the giftshop and I bought Emmett a t-shirt dyed with real PEI dirt. We also spent time at the New Glasgow Toy Factory where we marveled at the hand made wooden toys and puzzles.

I mastered map reading while driving around the Island. Those of you who know me well will fall off your chairs laughing at the thought of me navigating while Richard drove. We only sort of got lost once. Hey, it is a tiny island--how lost could we get?? My prairie brain had a hard time with the map because it seemed to be a full-size representation of the island. In Manitoba, a couple of inches of highway on the map could equal at least a three hour drive. The width of both of my hands placed side to side on this map (the distance from Kensigton to Charlottetown)is just over 50 km. I had to be extra vigilant at watching out for our turns. No easy feat since I just loved watching all of the rolling farmland pass by my car window. Yes, I am a hick and couldn't get over the deep red colour of the soil--almost clashing with the deep green of the grass. PEI is a beautiful island, and more than just Anne of Green Gables.

When we got back to Moncton we found the street blocked off in front of our hotel and stages and lights set up. It turns out Moncton celebrates Acadian Day a little early.

We are off to check out Magnetic Hill and the beach at Shediac today. Tomorrow our invisible internet friends Cynthia and Ross are taking us to Hopewell Rocks.

Stay tuned!

Friday, August 11, 2006

Greetings from Sunny New Brunswick

I am writing this post in my hotel room in beautiful downtown Moncton. I wish I could fill this page with adventures, but sadly Hubby and I are pretty slow-moving on vacation. We haven't even rented a car until today. Our first three days of holiday were spent doing the things that parents do when there are no kids around: sleeping when they want, eating when and where they want and sleeping when they want.

Ok, we also explored downtown Moncton on foot and gazed in awe at the beautiful stone churches and cathedral on Church street, wandered along the shore of the Peticodiac River on a foot/bike path and I dragged Hubby into a craft store to fondle some yarn. I came down with food poisoning one evening but was back on my feet the next afternoon.

I love that there are sidewalk cafes all along Main Street. We have only grabbed a quick breakfast at our hotel so far--we don't want to eat indoors if we don't have too. Last night we sat outside and ate cajun food while watching the local colour wander by and listening to buskers that were just down the street. The Bananas Foster was to die for!. I think tonight we will be dining at the Irish pub that is just across the street--Hubby is having a hankering for steak and kidney pie. We will also be searching out a proper lobster feast--but that may be saved for one of our road trips to PEI or Shediac (Lobster capital of NB).

Well, I have to run--a yarn studio is calling my name. (Hubby will have to remember to bring something to read)

Happy Stagette Party--MB Farm Girl!!! I'll raise a glass of something to you tomorrow night.

Thursday, August 3, 2006

Putting the "knit" back into "knit wit"

I haven't been knitting much lately.

I worked on Branching Out and a cotton/silk sweater while at camp but got discouraged when my wrists couldn't handle the cotton yarn. I left my darning needle at home so I couldn't move my life line up as I completed pattern repeats on my scarf--I left it in its original place until the scarf was longer over the life line than under. I thought I would be tempting the Knitting Goddess if I pulled it out any sooner than necessary. Thankfully, no frogging was required.

My enthusiasm for knitting was re-kindled when my good friend and knitting partner Poppins brought me back some crazy self-striping sock yarn from her trip to Germany. Clearly, some Jaywalker socks had to be cast on. The zigzag pattern nicely highlights the bold pink, orange and red stripe in the yarn. I turned a few heads at my Weight Watchers meeting as I knit them last night. They are my first real attempt at sock knitting, so I will be mastering the heel turn and toe graft. Right now I am having fun watching all the pretty colours show up as I go around and around the leg.

Poppins is also quite the enabler. This sweater showed up in my inbox one morning. I must have it. I visit the website daily to gaze at its loveliness and imagine what colour I will make it in (suggestions?) In fact, the yarn for this pattern is on my shopping list for my trip Out East next week. I will be bugging hubby to download the pattern today (I can't remember the PayPal password).

Hubby was teasing me about my chronic case of "startitis". He has not seen me complete an adult-sized sweater since he has known me. He rolled his eyes at me while I explained how I needed the patttern for a bulky cabled sweater as I already had the yarn in my stash. I just never knew until I saw that pattern what it was going to be. You see, the yarn in question was already the back of a sweater I started before I was pregnant with Emmett. I have grown to dislike this sweater immensely. I suddenly realized how very little I would wear a bulky pullover turtleneck. I can't stand turtlenecks and prefer layers since my internal thermostat can go from Arctic to Equator in minutes sometimes. I toyed with the idea of converting the original pullover pattern into a cardigan, but then this number caught my eye. Top down construction, minimal seaming, interesting texture, cables--it was love at first sight. The back of the pullover was frogged for swatching, and now the cardigan is emerging from the needles--this sucker is on 9mm needles and the yarn is chunky, it is taking shape quickly. I had to go up a size in needles so the garter bits are a little holey, but I still like the look. This will be my plane knitting while on vacation next week--I think a giant plastic circular needle should make it through security. I may make this the priority project so I can get some wear out of it this Autumn.