Wednesday, December 08, 2010


This year, Sam was able to participate much more in our Chanukah celebrations. Here are a few videos and pictures to give you a sense of how we celebrated this year.

Sam enjoying a game of dreidel with Dave.

Sam joining in on the chorus of "I Had a Little Dreidel"
He also realized that the "shin" on the dreidel looks a lot like an upside-down "M".

Sam really liked the story he got from Dave's parents, and asked us to read it over and over.

Mmmm.... latkes!

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Sam's day out

On Monday Sam spent the day with Olivia and Marcia. And Abby, their dog. I was a little worried how Sam would do with Abby but supposedly he did fine. Which is great. When I came to pick him up Abby started barking and Sam said, "Fff, fff, fff" which is his way of barking. Then he ran into the kitchen so he could see Abby and then he started crying. I think he thought he was stuck because Marcia had to go rescue him. But Sam really seemed to have a good time which is great because I think he will have some more time at Olivia's house in the near future. And I'm not just talking about Mom's group this afternoon.

Anyways I got a lot of work done today, Dave got even more work done since he worked late and Sam got to play with Olivia and Kessler, who came over for supper tonight. Sam really likes watching me play "The Price is Right" on Facebook and announcing "bids"! He's pretty cute.

This morning we're off to swimming, although I haven't decided yet if we're going to walk or drive. Part of me is tired and feeling not great so that part wants to drive. Part of me realizes we might not have many more opportunities to walk so I should take advantage of walking while we can. We'll see which part of me wins this morning!

Monday, September 20, 2010

Sunday with Mommy

On Saturday Dave went to the Yom Kippur service and Sam and I stayed home. Sam slept for two hours and then Dave took Sam on some errands so I could finish a book and shower. It was a bit of a low-key day which was good since Dave and I were fasting. (I'm not Jewish but feel I need to be in solidarity with Dave.)

Sunday we decided that Dave would try and work all day and I would take Sam for the day. So I took Sam to the synagogue where we made decorations for the sukkah. Sam had fun picking out colours for the paper chain (he REALLY like the black) and dropping seeds on foam shapes spread with glue. Then he coloured and coloured and coloured a piece of paper which we then turned into a windsock.

After a busy morning I thought he would be exhausted. But he didn't fall asleep until an hour of crying, rocking and general whining. Fortunately Dave has the magic touch and managed to rock Sam to sleep within 15 minutes. Sam hardly ate any supper (Lazy Shepherd's Pie) and really enjoyed the strawberries I'd gotten him as a treat. When your baby has a cold you want to get them some of their favourite foods so they'll eat anything at all. Well Sam devoured the strawberries so I guess they were a good buy.

After a bit of playtime with Daddy Sam was off to bed. And that was our weekend. Somewhat low key, and not a lot of family time. Hopefully we can change that for next weekend.

Saturday, September 18, 2010

Friday fun (or not)

Yesterday was a good day in some ways and a bad day in some ways. First the good -- Olivia from Mom's group came over for the day and she and Sam had a great time. They created lots of havoc and I think they had fun.

Also it was Sam's first Kindermusik class of the fall and it's a new class too -- Our Time! So it's shorter, more active and the kids are a lot more grown up. Sam woke up with a cold, and Olivia was there, so he didn't get as into it as I thought he might. Next week, though, he should be raring to go!

The bad -- I got home at 6:30 and Sam started FREAKING OUT. His ear was red and hot so we put supper away (without eating it, I might add) and headed off to a clinic. Sam was diagnosed with "almost" an ear infection so we have to keep an eye on it. He fell asleep pretty quickly, once we got home, and he only woke up once. After 5 minutes of cuddling he fell back asleep. And now he's already down for his nap. He ate a lot better this morning and his temperature is down so hopefully he's on the mend. Except for a very runny nose.

It's so hard when you have a sick child and the can't tell you what hurts. It's difficult to figure out what to do. But I think we've gotten through this one okay. Now I'm fighting a cold so hopefully THAT goes away soon.

Friday, September 17, 2010

Best Date Night Ever!!!

On Thursday, after MOPS and work, Dave and I had a date night. We went to a movie. And out for dinner. Sadly, East Side Mario's in South Commons has closed :( I really wanted pasta. Well, okay, what I REALLY wanted was their unlimited salad and bread, and to be able to enjoy my pasta on Friday for lunch :)

So we went to Montana's. Where nothing (not a thing) appealed to me. I got the kids' pasta with garlic bread and a side of vegetables. Mom, you've spoiled me, so the vegetables in their butter and garlic sauce were gross. And the kids' pasta was gross. But the garlic bread was good.

The movie we saw was "Dinner for Schmucks" and it had the potential to be just really bad but instead it was just really Really REALLY good. Like hysterically funny! What a great date night movie.

Then when we got home Sam wasn't sleeping and had gas from his Ethiopian food and so didn't fall asleep until 11:15. And then he woke up at 2am and was up at 7 for the day on Friday. But we had a really good date night on Thursday so that makes up for the bad night of sleep, right? Right!

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Midway through September

Yesterday Sam had his first swimming lesson of the fall session. He peed in his swim diaper before class and I think he scared himself because it took him awhile to get into the lesson. But once he was floating on his turtle flutter board and going under the water stream he LOVED it and was grinning and kicking away! He even was okay with being dunked by the end. And he loved the walk there and back, although Mommy didn't like the big hill :(

Then Sam didn't really nap (only 45 minutes) and we headed off to New Mom's group. Sam had a blast playing and eating muffins. And he stacked up little blocks to make a tower that was 5 blocks high. Yay for dexterity!

This morning Dave took Sam to a community playgroup. I had taken Sam to this play group a couple of times last fall but I think he was just too young (at 5 months old) but this year... Wow! Is he loving it! I took him on Monday and he played and tried to eat the other kids' snacks. Today Dave reported that he played some more and fell over the mini-picnic table bench. After play group he had a HUGE lunch and napped for 2 and a half hours!

Tonight Sam and I were listening to his Nursery Rhyme CD and the song 5 Little Ducks played. I lined up 5 ducks and had them go "far away" and not come back when Mother Duck quacked. I think Sam got a kick out of it. He was also giving High 5s to Dave and I and he has also started saying, "All done!" when you finish reading him a book. It's very cute.

Tomorrow is off to MOPS again and then playing with Auntie Tash in the evening while Dave and I get to go to a movie! Yay! I haven't been to a movie since January when Dave and I went to see Avatar. I'm excited!!!

Monday, September 13, 2010

The weekend

On Saturday Dave and I helped friends of ours move. It made us both excited and scared for our big move next summer (we hope!). It will be great to have a permanent place and be able to make long term plans. And it is scary to think of packing up and moving halfway across the country. Even though we know where we are going, it will be different. It was also great to be able to help friends move again -- there are many things you can't do, or have to do very differently, with kids.

Saturday afternoon I worked and then I got to spend some time with Sam, finally! I think he missed his mommy :) And he threw a block at Dave, from close range, and hit him in the lip. Dave got a bit of a fat lip from that. We all watched a Baby Einstein video on Saturday night and I think Sam enjoyed it. It was "Baby's Favorite Places" and he was attempting to copy some of the signs.

Yesterday we went to a Lutheran church. The liturgy was mostly Spanish music and very cool. We sang "Amazing Grace" to the tune of "The House of the Rising Sun" and it was a very unique way to sing it. Try it sometime. When I went up to take communion Sam started calling, "Mama, mama, mama..." I think he was still missing me from Saturday!

Last night Dave gave Sam a bath and then we had "Mommy and Daddy and Sam on the bed" time for a bit. Sam thought it was hysterical and laughed and crawled all over the place.

It was a good weekend, although I had a few too many work hours to catch up on so didn't get to be at home as much as I wanted to. Oh well. I've had other time at home which is why I had work to catch up on in the first place! Now I must get back to the laundry. I think the dryer just finished...

Thursday, September 09, 2010


So I am realizing that the time with Sam is going way too fast and so I want to remember things from each day. And maybe post a picture too. I am writing this post at 6:45am on Friday morning because Sam has been awake (and we've been trying to get him back to sleep) since 5:30am. sigh.

Things to remember from Thursday:

-- Going to MOPS with Sam and he was so excited to be in the nursery. And the nursery workers said "Sam did GREAT!" And he was so happy to see me when I came up to get him.

-- Sam Skyping with my parents and wanting to show them all the letters on the fridge. He actually got the hang of Skype pretty quickly.

-- Reading "But not the Hippopotamus" to Sam while standing up and holding him and every time I said, "But NOT the hippopotamus" I would turn him upside down. He is at the point where he anticipated what was coming and was ready to be upside down.

-- Sam ate a TON of cauliflower potato curry for supper.

Monday, August 30, 2010

Sam and Mommy scare Daddy

Sam and Mommy were hiding from Daddy and then scared him. He was very surprised!

Sunday, August 29, 2010

Sam cleans up

Sam is so proud of himself as he cleans up his blocks. He puts them away two at a time and says, "Yay!" every time. It's really cute. (At least we think it is!)

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Miscellaneous pictures of Sam

Here are some pictures of Sam from the end of August. In the first one Sam is looking at a picture of himself, while a picture of himself looks on in the background. Three Sams -- do you see them all? He is also modeling Jen's necklace, which we think makes him look like Mr T!

Here are some pictures of Sam playing with Mommy, Daddy and Squishy Turtle. We were trying to get good profile pictures for Facebook.

And in these last pictures Sam is just doing his normal everyday stuff -- reading books in his room and playing with his stuffed animals, in this case Squishy Turtle and Quatchi -- a Vancouver 2010 mascot.

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Sam invented a new game

He played it for about 20 minutes and laughed the whole time. It was pretty funny!!!

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Sam playing with the ball

Sam is getting quite good at walking and he likes his big red ball.

Friday, July 09, 2010

The Hills are Alive... With Flowers and Trees of Various Kinds

This post, the last in the series on our Austria trip, focuses on the various beautiful, cool, and otherwise picture-worthy flowers and trees that we saw during our trip.

Flowers in a window box in downtown Vienna.
A tree on the Beethoven Walk, in Heiligenstadt.
A large tree of some kind in the Volksgarten (People's Park), near the Imperial Palace.
A large flowering bush in the cloisters at the Heiligenkreuz Abbey.
Some colourful flowers in Melk, outside the cafe where we had lunch.
A large, cool-looking tree near the hedge maze in Schönbrunn.
Natasha and Carol stopping to smell the roses outside Schönbrunn.

Well, that is it from Austria. Stay tuned for some back-in-Canada content from the start of our summer!

Friday, July 02, 2010

Food, Glorious Food!

We enjoyed many fantastic meals, desserts, and other treats during our time in Austria, usually thanks to recommendations from Tim and Janice or Bill and Mim.
A dinner plate-sized schnitzel that Dave devoured for lunch on his first day in Vienna.
The eissalon where Sam had his first taste of ice cream.
Dave and Tim, Janice, Tessa, and Willem enjoying strudel at the heuriger near Heiligenstadt.
A café in the volksgarten, where we ate a nice lunch.
Sam eating wurst of some kind (bratwurst, perhaps?) at a stand in the Prater.
Dave and Natasha shared this amazing vegetable strudel at Oberlaa, a cafe just off the Graben.
Dave and Tim went out for an evening of wurst and beer.
A decadent dessert at the mountain lodge in Puchberg-am-Schneeberg.

Coming up next: Green growing things.

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Sam in Vienna

One of the highlights of our trip was getting to experience Vienna with Sam. He was an excellent traveller, and an enthusiastic participant. So, without further ado, here are a whole bunch of cute pictures of Sam from our trip!

With Natasha at the Hundertwasser Haus.

Hanging out in Beethoven's garden.

Eating wurst at the Prater.

Riding a carousel at Stephansplatz.

Riding a horse at a playground in Rüst

Walking with Natasha and Janice at Heiligenkreuz.

Taking a nap during Bill's lecture in the Opera Café

Walking with Willem and Tessa outside the Belvedere.

Hanging out with Dave near a fountain outside the Melk abbey.

Posing in front of the statue of Mozart just off the Ringstrasse.

Getting ready to disembark from the cog rail train in Puchberg-am-Schneeberg.

Waiting for our flight from Vienna to Toronto.

Hanging out in the sky crib during our 9-hour Vienna-to-Toronto flight.

Up next: A taste of Austria!

Monday, June 28, 2010

Puchberg am Schneeberg

After exploring Vienna, we headed off for the mountains, to the alpine town of Puchberg-am-Schneeberg. Dave's vision was of us enjoying mountain hikes, fresh-flowing streams, and beautiful scenery. However, the weather that greeted us when we arrived in town was grey, rainy and very windy. This meant that the cog rail train that usually travels up the mountain was shut down for the day, and so we spent a bit of time exploring the town, and a lot of time hanging out indoors.
A cloudy view of the mountain.
The license plates in town all started with "NK ...", so we looked around town until we found "our" car!
In the evening, we had a farewell gathering for our tour group. This is a photo of half of the group. This was the end of the tour group's time in Vienna, but we stayed on for an extra day, along with Tim, Janice, Tessa, and Willem, and Bill and Mim, and hoped for clearer weather.
The next day was equally grey, but not quite as windy, so we were able to ride the cog rail up the mountain. This is the "salamander" train that took us up to the top.
A view of the mountains on our way up.
We had a brief stop halfway up the mountain. The track was, unsurprisingly, quite steep.
The weather at the top was even colder -- and snowier -- than at the foot of the mountain. This is a chapel that we walked to, near a mountain lodge where we hung out and had lunch. It was so cold, in fact, that Natasha had to buy an extra pair of socks at the lodge!
Natasha and Sam posing in the slightly sunnier weather on the way back down.
Three intrepid mountain explorers, returning to the bottom.

This is the end of the "narrative" portion of the Vienna blog posts. Each of the next few posts will highlight a particular theme from our trip.

Up next: Sam in Austria!