Wednesday, April 26, 2017

What's Up Wednesday: April 2017

Words cannot express how much I love these random posts which fill you in on a little bit of everything. I love reading them and I love writing them, so with no further ado, here's What's Up Wednesday!

image from here

What we're eating this week... Well, as soon as I get it made (since I'm writing this on Tuesday, hopefully it will be made by the time you read this), we're going to be eating South Georgia Caviar. We LOVE this stuff. Sam loves it too and it's an easy food to send for his lunches. Yay! Other than that, because I haven't menu planned yet, we're just eating by the seat of our pants. Ha!
 This post is not sponsored by "No Name" but it could be!

What I'm reminiscing about... Oh, this is a good question. I don't know that I've been reminiscing about anything these days. I'm just loving living in the moment right now. 

What I'm loving... The age and stage our kids are at. (Have I said this before?) I'm also loving that Sam and Rachel don't really fight with each other. It means that they enjoy hours of playing together and that Dave and I can get things done. This past weekend, we set up the trampoline, and on Monday night, the kids spent an hour on it while Dave and I cleaned some of the house. We had music blaring and it was just nice.

What we've been up to... We started getting our yard ready for spring this past weekend -- we set up the trampoline, planted some seeds, and I planted the front window boxes with pansies. It was just so fun!

What I'm dreading... Again, I don't know that I'm dreading anything. Life is just in a pretty sweet space right now. It hasn't always been that way (see a lot of last year), and so I'm just enjoying it.

What I'm working on... Cleaning our house. I know, it's so exciting :) I'm also working on blogging more. I think I can finally say, I'm back in a blogging routine. Yay!

What I'm excited about... Rachel is a gem in her dance production this year (for one evening only), so I'm excited to see her. And her excitement about it is contagious. I'm also excited because Sam is playing T-ball again this year, and because we talked up his league, three of his friends from school are on his team too! Yay!!!
 Rachel at dance, February 2016 * Sam at T-ball, May 2016

What I'm watching/reading... I haven't been watching anything lately as I took a bit of a Gilmore Girls break. I've been reading All. The. Books. but nothing specific. The best book I've read in awhile though is Being Mortal by Atul Gawande so if you're looking for something good to read, pick it up. It will make you think, a lot, so I'm really glad my church is doing a Sunday School class on it, so I can talk about it with other people.

image from here
(I get no money if you click on this link.
Just saying.) 

What I'm listening to... If you've read this blog for any length of time, you already know we're listening to our beloved Blue Jays on the radio every chance we get. Ha!

What I'm wearing... Layers. One day it's warm and the next it's cold again. Hello Spring! I've been getting Dave to take pictures of some of my outfits so here's a small sampling below. I have a sarcastic blog piece planned for some point on why I'm not a fashion blogger. Ha!

What I'm doing this weekend... The READATHON!!! Reading ALL THE BOOKS!!! Can you tell I'm just a little excited about it?!?!? And for those of you who follow me on Instagram, I apologize in advance for all the readathon overposting I will be doing this weekend.

Me during the Readathon, April 2016

What I'm looking forward to next month... Rachel's dance performance! Sam's T-ball season! More time to work in the yard! And, oh yeah, my birthday!!!

What else is new... This isn't picture-worthy, but I am excited to take on two new volunteer positions at my church. One has already started (coordinating the worship skills portion of our mid-week ministry) and the other will start in a few months (youth sponsor). I'm excited to be more intentionally involved at church.

Bonus question: What is your favourite spring/summer shoe? I have many favourites. See below:

I'm still enjoying my Hunter rain boots. The second pair are my church/dressier shoes. The blue runners are pretty much my go-to shoe, as long as I can go barefoot. This is my second pair and I have a third pair sitting in my closet for when these wear out (which they are close to doing). The red pair is new for this spring and if it's cold enough for socks, and not raining, then I have the red shoes on. Except for the Hunter boots, I got all of these shoes for less than $20 at Payless Shoe Source.

So that's what's up with me this Wednesday. What's up with you?

Tuesday, April 25, 2017

Science And Stairs And Squares

On the Saturday of our first weekend in Toronto, we met up with our friend, Mike, and his son, Will, to go to the Science Centre. After about half an hour, I realized, the Science Centre is MUCH better in small chunks as opposed to all at once. Unfortunately, a small chunk was not what we had planned for this day. Ooops.

We started out by looking through all the special telescopes above. They each gave us a different view of the sun. That was really cool!
We spent about four hours at the Science Centre discovering all sorts of different things, and the only way we could get the kids to leave, was to promise them that we'd go back sometime. As I said above, it really is better to discover it in small chunks.

On Sunday morning, Dave and I took our first Uber ride downtown where we had plans to climb the CN Tower. A couple of times a year, you can walk up it to raise money for charity. We were part of the World Wildlife Fund climb.
We weren't allowed to carry anything with us -- bummer :( -- so I don't have any pictures of us at the top. However, we walked up the 144 flights of stairs in a little over half an hour so we were pretty happy with that. What surprised both Dave and I was how tired out our lungs got. We had to take breaks to catch our breath. I expected my legs to be sore, but that was not the case.

Then we headed back to our friends to pick up Sam and Rachel and our stuff. The kids were really excited about eating a hot dog from a street vendor so we picked up hot dogs and ate at Yonge-Dundas Sqaure. It reminded me a bit of Times Square in New York and I'd love to explore here a bit more.
While we waited for our bus home, Sam and I read, and Rachel and Dave snuck up on us from the stairwell. It was very surprising!
And then we were finally home. It was a really fun, but incredibly exhausting weekend, and I was glad to sleep in my own bed again. But we had a really good time and can't wait to explore more of Toronto.

Disclaimer: What with our recent trips to Toronto and trying to finish up blogging about our trip last summer, I realize the blog seems a little travel focused right now. I promise you we do stay at home most of the time, and in the next few weeks, the blog will be a lot more focused on real life. The way things worked out, we ended up spending five out of nine days in Toronto and I am more than ready to just stay home for awhile now.

Thursday, April 20, 2017

#tbt: We Had A "Superior" Time

One of the most unexpected treats of our trip home was our stop in Terrace Bay, Ontario. We basically stopped there because I wanted to dip my toes in Lake Superior, and there was a sign saying, "beach."
Terrace Bay was such a fun little place to stop. We definitely enjoyed getting our feet wet.
You can tell we all enjoyed the break from the car.
We had planned on making this a quick stop but then we discovered we could climb a lighthouse. Can you see Dave, Rachel, and Sam at the top?
We ended up eating lunch here and just enjoying a couple of hours in this cute, little town. I was just glad that no bears ended up visiting while we were eating. Yikes.

And to make this a legit #tbt, here's a picture of me in Lake Superior almost ten years ago, from when Dave and I moved from Waterloo to Edmonton, and drove out west. I look pretty much the same, right?! Hahahaha :)
August 2007

Tuesday, April 18, 2017

Adventures In The Big City

A few years ago a friend of mine posted about a trip they did to Toronto using only public transit. Ever since then, I have been dreaming about doing the same thing. We were originally planning on doing this over March Break but then I got sick so we put it off until a couple of weekends ago.
We had to wake up at 5:30 to leave our house by 6:15. We walked to the train station and caught the GO Train into the city. The kids were total troopers this whole trip, especially on the early morning walk in the snow flurries (in April, thank you very much).
Once we got to Union Station, we needed Starbucks to recuperate. Rachel cracked me up with this very grown up pose.
Our friend works at Google so he let us store our luggage at his office for the day, and he invited us for lunch. It was really fun!
There is an indoor PATH which allows you to walk all over downtown Toronto while staying inside. We got lost a few times but it was much warmer than being outside so we didn't mind.
Sam wanted to spend his birthday money so we headed to the Eaton's Centre, a big shopping centre in downtown Toronto. I loved this "Canada" wall at Indigo. We also checked out the famous geese!
After lunch we walked to TIFF (Toronto International Film Festival) to check out the digiPlaySpace. Our friends told us about this and we enjoyed it so much. It it twenty-three digital installations which we got to interact with. Sam, especially LOVED it.
This domino game was a lot of fun to play.
Rachel and I enjoyed petting a fox, as just one of the things we could "do" in this installation featuring some of Canada's National Parks.
Sam really enjoyed programming this computer...
... and we want to make drawbots (a wireless drawing robot) for the school science fair.
We all enjoyed trying to figure out this logic light board.
Sam really liked this interactive story.
And to be honest, so did I!
And we had (too much) fun flight painting with a flying ball of light.
Finally, Rachel and I had a lot of fun walking the red blue carpet in advance of the Smurfs premiere which was happening that night!
To end off our exciting day, we took the subway to our friends' house and got caught in the stink bomb attack. Thankfully, we were two stations away when it occurred, and so we ended up getting off the subway and walking for a bit to avoid the station where it actually happened (which was on our original route).

I will never forget being so crowded on the subway that all I could see of Rachel was her face looking up at me. The kids thought it was a great adventure, and Sam commented quite loudly, to the amusement of many around us, "I've never been on the subway when there's been a stink bomb before!" I hope it's an experience we never repeat.

So that was the exciting beginning to our adventures on public transit.