Saturday, December 13, 2014

Dreaming of a Wet Christmas

The Christmas Seaon has begun! On Tuesday night, I took the kids downtown after work to the Vancouver Aquarium Xmas Party.   It's one tradition we do every year.   This year the highlights were the wetlab where the kids could touch sea urchins and sea anenames and sea cucumbers and hermit crabs. They only let a few people in at a time so it wasn't crowded and you could really visit with the animals and learn from the volunteers.  The other amazing thing was that all three sloths were out and about and one was eating and one was moving about quite quickly for a sloth.  I'm not sure why but every year at the Christmas party, the animals are so curious to see who's there and because there are also a lot less people it's easy to get a really good look back.  There was a musical group singing songs, Alice was up dancing with a pack of kids, Sacha declared himself too old for these kinds of songs and grumped. Oh well. Maybe next year the aquarium will hire Katy Perry, then he'd change his tune.

Monday, December 08, 2014


Tonight's excitement has been provided by one of the newest members of the family.  They were supposed to be a birthday present for Sacha but because they were ready for homes a month early, we picked up our new pet rats two weeks ago. 

I had planned on getting a small pet for Sacha for his birthday this year anyway but when Olly died the kids were really missing having a pet around. I narrowed the choice down between guinea pigs or rats because apparently they are the two best small animals for kids and guinea pigs live for 8 years and rats live for 2. So rats it was!

They were 6 weeks when they came home and they are from the same breeder but not from the same litter and their personalities could not be more different. This has been the most surprising thing about them, how distinct and different their personalities are. That and the fact that rats have personalities. 

We have named them Buttercup and Inigo after the Princess Bride characters (even though they are both girls). 

Buttercup is a Siamese Rex with Dumbo ears which means she is the same colour as a Siamese cat with curly fur and whiskers and big ears on the side of her head rather than on top.  She is the more shy and calm of the two. She is very gentle. 

 Inigo is a Mink Berkshire with Dumbo ears, she is a satiny grey colour with a white belly. Her fur is smooth. She is curious and adventurous and always wants to explore out of the cage. On her first night home, she popped right out of the cage because she was so small. Once she figured out she could do this, she did it non-stop which sent me on a late night trip to petsmart to get a temporary cage with smaller gaps between the bars. 

Buttercup is much bigger than Inigo and she was the source of tonight's drama. Sacha and I were playing with the rats out of the cage and buttercup squirmed out of my hands and darted under the couch. It took the two of us half an hour to coax her out and get her back in her cage. I'm sure she hates us now. 

Monday, December 01, 2014


When Mum was here, she taught Alice how to peel a mandarin orange by poking her thumb through the middle and peeling back the rind. This was great! Alice loves them and it's a healthy, easy snack she can now help herself to. 

Over the day though, she would ask me if she could have an orange, she would ask mum if she could have an orange, when Andrew was here after work, she would ask him. Over the day none of us really kept track of how many we let her have. And why would we tell her " no" to an little orange snack. 

So to answer how many oranges can one 4 year old eat in 24 hours? .... A whole 3lb box worth.  The answer to the follow up question, how many oranges can a four year old keep down? That would be somewhat less than a whole box worth. 

Alice gobbled down the sausage we had for dinner. Her tummy started hurting shortly after a piece of cabbage touched her mouth (ever so briefly before it was promptly spat into the trash).  We thought the sore tummy was pretty convent and we asked her to finish the small bit of potato on her plate, which she did. 

Minutes before bedtime she became clingy and complaining about her sore tummy again. That she needed medicine. She needed to go to the hospital (which she also requests for scraped knees).  We snuggled and gave her some Tylenol and put her to bed. 

Not sure when it happened but when we checked on poor little Alice, she had puked all over herself and her bed and then fell back to sleep.  We cleaned her up and stripped her sheets. She woke up in the morning feeling great! 

Sunday, November 30, 2014

Road to Recovery

On Thursday morning I had a minor surgery to remove some uterine polyps. Other than being jabbed about 6 times trying to find a cooperative vein for the general anesthetic, everything went very smoothly. 

Mum has been staying with us to look after the kids while I recover.  Alice is loving the excuse to get to sleep in Sacha's room. It's good to know if push came to shove I could have the sleep in the same room and turn Alice's room into an office.  Not that Sacha loves the situation, he likes having Baba here that he's putting up with Alice. 

I've just been taking it easy, watching movies and resting.  I'm pretty sure I'll be all good to go back to work tomorrow. I can always take a half day if I need too. 

Sunday, November 23, 2014

Four Years

Last weekend, Alice turned four!  And we celebrated with a Alice in Wonderland Mad Tea Party which was pretty much  four years in the making.   Poor Alice is discovering how much the world opens up to you at 5 and is regularly sad about being only 4 and that was back when she was still three!  She wants to be in Beavers with Sacha and she wants to start Kindergarten now!  She can write her name and a couple of her friends names.  She knows all her letters and numbers up to 20.  She loves practising her “homework”.  One more year and the world will open up to her, until she finds out all the things 8 year olds get to do I am sure.


November 15, 2014 
4 Years Old

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We bought this Alice dress when we went to Disneyland in 2011 and she was only 8 weeks old.  It was the smallest size they had and it finally fits her 4 years later.
IMG_7624 photo 1 (2)

Monday, November 10, 2014

No Long Weekends

I'm only slightly bitter that I had to work today. Sacha was off school, Andrew was off work, no students or teachers in the school, even most office staff took the day off. I was left to man the reception desk. Oh well. I get tomorrow off for Remembrance Day, so that's nice. Sacha is in the parade with his beaver group. I might have to physically restrain Alice from keeping her out of the parade. There have already been tears shed. 

I took the kids to Reifel on Saturday, at Alice's request. She was adamant that we go feed ducks (my master plan is coming to fruition). I even had a coupon for Go Bananas that was only good for Saturday but Alice insisted that we feed ducks. I bought some seed with sunflowers and peanuts and the kids had a great time holding their hands out and having the chickadees eating straight from their hands.  Sacha even had a red winged blackbird come and perch on his hand at one point. It was just like Snow White. 

On Sunday, Tina came over and watched Frozen with Alice and I started a crafting sweatshop getting ready for her birthday party next weekend. I have 10 mini Mad Hatter hats, a playing card garland and a bunch of mome raths ready to go. I just need to make some large playing cards for flamingo croquet (and buy the flamingos), draw a Cheshire Cat and get baking for the mad tea party on Saturday. 

Then I have one week to prepare for a big surprise for the kids the following weekend. No wonder I'm exhausted. 

Monday, November 03, 2014

Time Travels

I hate daylight saving time. They were making a big deal about it on the radio this morning that it is daylight saving time rather than daylight savings time, even though that sounds better.  Actually. I guess I don't hate it. I wish we were permanently on it. I hate the switch back. I would happily trade the tiny bit of light we get before 8am for the hour we get after work.  This system may have made sense back when we were all farmers and didn't have reliable artificial light sources but we need to modernize our practices.  

It threw my whole day off too. I had to pick up a letter from my doctor for work because I am going to be missing some time at the end of the month due to a minor surgery. But because the clock my my car doesn't auto adjust, I felt like I was in a big rush to get back and pick up Alice from daycare and get her to ballet lessons. Of course, by the time I picked her up and stopped for gas, we still had 1/2 hour before class started. So I thought while we were a little closer, we could pop over to the vet and pick up Oliver's ashes. It is only 30 blocks away from the dance studio, should not have been a problem. For some reason, the vet was closed when we got there. Alice started crying because she wanted to see Oliver and didn't want me to leave with out him (poor thing). We raced back to the studio and I got stuck in the worst traffic. Alice was nearly 20 minutes late to a class we were half an hour early for. 

I consoled myself by watching crappy tv when we got home. Yay.