Thursday, July 31, 2014

A Summer of Fun and Games!

This summer I purposely slowed us down and it’s been wonderful!!  Hannah did not want to play soccer and we took a break from gymnastics and piano too.  Other than 4 nights of swimming lessons next week, that’s it for our activity commitments this summer.  What a treat this has been!!

We’re normally home for the night sometime between 5:30 and 6:00 and the evening is ours.  Summer meals are normally light and fairly quick to put together so we have time after supper to spend some quality time together.  Sometimes it’s a bike or scooter ride, reading together, watching a TV show or, games.   All of a sudden Hannah is able to play ‘grown up’ games and oh how we’re enjoying this time together!

The first new game she learned was ‘Uno.’IMG_1429

The box indicated the game was for children age 7+ so I wasn’t  sure if it would be a bit difficult for her.  She caught on within minutes and quickly began beating Mommy fair and square.  When she played this series of cards I quickly realized my fears were for naught.  Hannah knew exactly how to play Uno – and win! IMG_1431

Hannah’s little friends K & G told her about a card game that they play called ‘Trash.’  I looked it up on YouTube and it became an instant hit with both of us!IMG_4190 (2)

Here is a video of m sweet girl playing.  Trash is a great game that she has already taught to one of her friends!

Our newest game is Skip-Bo and we just learned it Tuesday night.  It’s more challenging than the others but she’s doing well and only 2 nights in she’s playing with strategy!  Tonight she chose not to play one of her cards because she knew it would help me out.  Little stinker!!IMG_4333

Hannah’s victory pose.  (LOL!  Yes, her legs really are that long!)Skip Bo success

Are there any other card games you would like to recommend to us? 

Monday, July 28, 2014

Spending Time with Nana and Papa

At the same place that mom and dad rent their cottage, Nana and Papa own a trailer so Hannah and I packed up and headed north to visit for a couple of days. 

We were there for only minutes when their living room looked like this.  Guess she’d made herself at home!IMG_1544

The following morning Hannah surprised Nana with her curly doo!

The second day Hannah was excited to go back to the clubs that she had been part of 2 weeks earlier.  The children’s ministry at the camp is excellent as is displayed by the fact that she can’t wait to go morning and night each day that we’re there! 

After lunch on the deck with our table set by our sweet helper, IMG_4215IMG_4216we headed down to Grandma and Grandpa’s cottage to finally go out on the boat.  The weather hadn’t cooperated when we were there 2 weeks earlier so we were excited to finally go out on the boat, especially when there is an ice cream shop at the opposite end of the lake!IMG_1556

Catching a ride from Bec Bec and Kenzie on the way for ice cream.IMG_1554

Rabbit ears courtesy of Papa!IMG_4207

‘Here Papa, I can help you.’


Morning chat with Little Horsey.IMG_1562

She found herself a new seat.IMG_4221

We stopped down at the cottage to say goodbye to Grandma and Grandpa before we started home and an impromptu photo shoot broke out!IMG_4233

Grandma and GrandpaIMG_4238


The mandatory game of ‘pretend to toss Hannah into the fountain’IMG_4244

A final playtime in the sand pile at the cottage before heading back up to the trailer.  (No…Hannah’s sandcastle building skills did not grow exponentially in 2 weeks)  IMG_4228

Playing follow-the-leader with Papa.IMG_4245

Learning to blow bubbles is serious business!IMG_4247

Just hanging around.IMG_4255

Playtime with Papa.  She loves this stuff!!

Thank you so much for a wonderful visit Nana and Papa!  We love you!!IMG_4252

Saturday, July 26, 2014

A Day of Play

Earlier this year a new toy store opened near us and Hannah has been itching to go.  I wanted to go when I could offer her lots of time to explore and play and last Tuesday was that day. 

Before we even entered the store she spent ages at this water table – that had no water in it.  IMG_4180

As I slowly explored the store Hannah went from station to station playing with new and unique toys.  There was some cool sand called ‘Sands Alive’ that was really neat but I was more than happy to leave it at the store as I think at home it would be all over the floor!  She played with it for a long time but hasn’t talked about it since.  Phew!

We attempted to play a little hockey on one of the boards I remember as a kiddo but we’ll just say one person (who shall remain nameless) possibly used some illegal moves…maybe!IMG_4181

After looking at the books, shopping with a shopping cart, playing with puzzles and admiring the jewellery available for dress-up, Hannah’s final stop for play was with this large dollhouse.  IMG_4183

She had fun playing with it and I found it interesting to see her line each  piece of furniture up against a wall.  At first I wondered why and then I realized in our home that’s pretty much the way it is as it’s the best way to fit everything in to our smaller space.  Heh – never really thought about it!IMG_4185

We enjoyed over 2 hours of playtime together at the toy store before I snuck in one small purchase as a surprise for a couple of days later into our vacation.  It was fun to have the time to just wander, look at, touch and play with the toys.  We had a great time together and finished our outing at one of our favourite restaurants – The Mandarin.  I’d saved some gift cards Mom and Dad had given me to take Hannah for lunch and this ended up being the day.  A great way to end our outing together!IMG_1530

Monday, July 21, 2014

An Island of Excitement!

Hannah and I are just finishing an amazing 10 day staycation together.  We spent the majority of it close to home and it was wonderful!!  Alarm clocks were turned off day 1 and for the majority of the 10 days we didn’t set times that we needed to be or do anything.  We went with the flow, relaxed, played games, read, watched TV, shopped, cleaned and more.  It was a treat as I tend to pack our normal vacations full from start to finish.  I want to do this again sometime!!

One of the first things we did plan though was a visit to Centreville with our friends Auntie K, Uncle J, K & G.  We met at the train Monday morning ready for a day of fun!  We visited Centreville together last year and had a blast and were hoping for a repeat experience this year!IMG_1433

The first ride of the day (season!) is always an exciting one!c1

Spinning tea cups.  I can do spinny rides within reason.  These sweet kiddos put us adults to shame with their spinning madness!c3

Even though this giraffe didn’t go up and down it was Hannah’s animal of choice on the carousel that attempted to break the sound barrier it spun so quickly!c7

The Ferris Wheel has always been a favourite of Hannah’s since she was just a toddler but this time it tickled her tummy a bit more than she was happy with.   It was a 1 Ferris Wheel ride for us this year.c9

The other times we happily waited for our friends to enjoy more rides round and round.  Auntie K snapped this pic from the Ferris Wheel of Hannah and Mommy sharing some snuggles.  A great trade off instead of a ride for sure!!c20

As in the past the kids were excited to ride the fire engines and cars and oh did they take their driving responsibilities seriously!  We can only hope they’re like this when they grow up. Smilec11c18

Hands down our favourite ride of the day was the log flume!  We lost track of the number of times we rode this rides but it would have involved counting on fingers and toes for sure!  Uncle J showing his respect to the photographer!IMG_1469

While Mommy lumbered into and out of the log each ride, Hannah mastered her own entrance that was entertaining to watch.

One of the last rides of the day for the kids to enjoy was the pony rides and they were a huge hit for all 3 kiddos!c16

Time for a train ride.c19

At one point we took a walk around the island and out on a pier.  Hannah and Mommy 2014c21 - Copy

and back in 2010 taken during our very first visit to Centre Island!!Imported Photos 00091

Sadly our great day had to come to an end.  I am so glad that this has become an annual tradition for our families!  Here is our beautiful skyline with our ferry in the distance.IMG_1481

Clever Auntie K created a movie of our wonderful day!  She’s so talented!!

Thank you for another amazing day Auntie K, Uncle J, K & G!  We’ll make sure it happens again in 2015!!

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Alisha’s Walkathon

Saturday Hannah and I met a walking, talking miracle!  1 year ago now we were praying for my co-worker and friend’s daughter, Alisha.  1 year ago she was in a tragic tubing accident that almost claimed her life.  She was air lifted from Muskoka to Sunnybrook Hospital in Toronto barely clinging to life at the time.  After spending 6 weeks in a medically-induced coma she needed to relearn many of those things we take for granted.  Her right arm had been crushed and she sustained sever head trauma.

Now, only one short year later she is walking, talking and more!  She has started dancing again which is her first love and what she had graduated from college doing only weeks before her accident.    She spent 2 1/2 months at Sunnybrook and then 2 additional months at a rehab centre.  She shared Saturday that when she went to the rehab centre there were over 200 patients there and she was only 1 of 3 who were able to walk!   Part of that is why she decided a walkathon was a great way for her to raise money to support Sunnybrook Trauma Emergency Critical Care Program!

Hannah and I had fun visiting Alisha’s fund raiser and contributing to such a worthy cause!  Alisha was so sweet with Hannah and encouraged her to try the children’s stations that they had prepared. 

Alisha and Hannah at the ring toss.IMG_4171 (2)

Trying out the duck pond.


Mmmm…cotton candy!  A favourite of Hannah’s for sure!!IMG_4178

Alisha, we are so thankful that God answered the prayers of many and that your recovery has been so amazing!  Your outgoing, positive personality will take you far and I know you will be an amazing encouragement to many throughout your life as you continue to share your story with others.  Your fund raiser was a fun way for us to spend a Saturday afternoon and a treat to meet you in person and hug the gal Hannah and I prayed for so often last summer.   All the best as you return to school in January!  You will be a great social worker who will truly be able to relate to those you are working with!

Sunday, July 13, 2014

Vacation Bible School

Last week Hannah and a number of her friends went to Vacation Bible School at our church and they had a blast!  I helped with VBS for a number of years before Hannah was born and it was always one of the highlights of my year!  This year I was super excited that Hannah was old enough to attend!  There were over 465 kiddos and 150 staff who attended each day and 68 of those were JK grads just like Hannah.  What an exciting week!

Each day she came home excited to tell me about what she’d done and I heard her singing the songs too.   It was neat that 3 of her good friends not only were at VBS but were at her table so they spent the entire week together!

I took this pic the first morning.  Hannah and Chick were excited but little Pea wasn’t too sure.  By the next morning all 3 were excited to go to ‘camp’!VBS 2014

Friday was family day so I took the day off work.  We dropped the kids off at VBS and K1 and I skipped all the way to the coffee shop!  A morning to ourselves to visit?  Woo hoo!!

VBS 2 2014VBS 3 2014

At 11 K1 and I headed back to the church to enjoy what the kids had been preparing all week!


I have already started to think about the dates of next year’s California trip so that we can go there and also be here the week of VBS!

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