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Summer = Lots of Pool Time

It’s amazing the difference a year makes.  Last summer I wasn’t fully comfortable with taking all 3 kids to the pool at the same time.  The girls were still so little, had only just started swim lessons, and I wasn’t confident that I could watch them properly at the same time.  I wasn’t as worried about Andrew since he was able to swim, but he wasn’t nearly as comfortable in the water as he is this year. He recently completed Swim Kids 3, swims underwater with ease, can hold his breath for an impressive length of time, loves to jump in and do cannonballs.  Obviously I keep an eye on him, but he’s not really as much of a concern to me as his sisters. Still, they’re all strong enough in the water now that I’m happy to take all 3 to the pool by myself, which is a pretty big milestone for us, and means we can spend a lot more time in the water than we ever could before.

Margaret and Emily were enrolled in another set as Sea Otters at swim lessons, which is considered the first set.  Emil…

Emily's fall

A few months ago James and I planned out when he would be taking vacation time this summer, and we booked a couple of camping trips.  Instead of just taking a day or two here and there throughout the summer like he’s done in the past, this time he booked a week off in July and a week off in August.  That way we can enjoy some camping trips while also having some time to do fun activities closer to home, and not feel completely rushed.
At the time I was feeling generous and told James he could plan a weekend to go to Victoria to stay with his dad for a few nights on his own.  Of course, he jumped at the chance! It became apparent that this weekend was really the only time that was going to work, and would seem a little ‘easier’ for me because this next week is when the kids are going to a summer camp and I’ll have a few hours of free time each day throughout the week.  
So on Friday he left for work, and wouldn’t be home till Sunday night.  On Friday morning we went and picked my mom up…

A kid with a cold and a broken dryer

Yesterday Andrew skipped his dance class due to having a headache and a stuffy nose.  I couldn’t argue with him not feeling up to doing acrobatics with a headache! I figured the day of rest would be enough to get him feeling better in time for school on Monday.
This morning the girls came charging up the stairs at the sound of me getting up, as they generally do.  Margaret informed me that Andrew was sick and I inquired as to what kind of sick. He called up from the couch in a pathetic voice that he had a stomach ache, headache, his ears were hurting, and he wasn’t well enough to go to school.
This would not be Andrew’s first attempt at milking a common cold for all that it’s worth.  He has been known to stay home over a hangnail in the past! He plays up whatever small symptom he has and makes it seem as though he may not make it through the day.  I was concerned this was one of those times where he’d just rather stay home and play video games and watch movies and be waited on hand a…

Looking forward to summer!

Yesterday I went out and bought a bunch of pretty flowers to plant in the garden, but the weather isn’t nice enough to be out doing that.  I’m hoping tomorrow it will start getting nicer again. Last week we were spoiled with a sudden bout of really warm weather. It went from being so cold and wintery to more like summer than spring, and now we’re back to the typical dreary grey of Vancouver.  Not that we have any right to complain given that other people in Canada still have snow on the ground!
I look forward to getting flowers planted and enjoying all the colour in our yard.  I have my fingers and toes crossed that the rodent issue isn’t so severe this year, as I really want us to be be able to get out and enjoy our yards as much as possible.  I did buy several peppermint plants as well, which are meant to deter rodents, so we’ll see how well they work.
We have several plans already made for the summer and I feel excited knowing we have some fun adventures to look forward to.  It loo…

Kids need to play outside with their friends

It’s only been recently that I’ve become okay with the kids going out and playing down the street to play without myself or James supervising.  Andrew has been allowed for a few years now, but I didn’t feel comfortable with the girls going without being watched. They’re 5, but still quite little, and while of course they could go play in the yard on their own, or even the neighbours’ yards for a period of time when they were 4, down the street where there are cars going by and not necessarily any adults watching out for any of the kids there is another story.
I’m trying to give them a bit more independence, and for the most part it’s been going well.  We’ve told them the rules about not playing in the road and being mindful of cars, not expecting them to automatically see you or even stop if they do.  They know the limits of where they’re allowed to play, and they know they’re not allowed to go off with anyone, or go over to anyone’s house without asking first so we know where they ar…

Mother/Daughter days

This morning after school drop off I came home for a bit and got a few chores done around the house, got a parcel sent off (Canada Post is so expensive, it’s beyond a joke) and then picked up my mom.  I had bought a few new things last month at Reitman’s because they sent me a 25% off coupon for my birthday, and at that time I got coupons for 30% off my next purchase, which would be expiring this weekend.  I know it’s all a marketing ploy since I otherwise probably wouldn’t be shopping there right now, but it worked both in their favour and in mine! I ended up getting a new raincoat, two nice tops, and a sweater for just over $100, tax included.  The jacket alone was $99 regular priced, so it was a steal of a deal! I’m pretty pleased with myself. I was just saying I wish I had a nicer jacket for Spring, because I’m always wearing a fleece one that makes me feel underdressed and just kind of blah, and it also did nothing for me on the many rainy days we have!  So I’m happy and also …

Snowmaggedon came and went!

Today at school drop off the girls’ teacher announced that there will be no more family reading in the morning moving forward.  The usual routine is that parents can stay till 9 or just after to read with their child(ren) before they get settled for the day.  In some ways I’m OK with the new rule because there are times when the girls don’t even seem all that thrilled to have me there, but on the other hand it’s the end of an era and I feel a bit sad knowing that’s it forever!  When Andrew’s family reading time finished when he was in Kindergarten, I knew I had it to look forward to a few years later with the girls.  Now it’s done forever!
I came home and got to work making a crock pot veggie lasagna that will be ready just in time for when James gets home from work.  I also decided that today was the day I would attempt to make homemade dinner rolls.  Yes, it’s true, I’m admitting it, I have never successfully made my own bread or bread-type product.  I tried to make a loaf of bread o…