Okay, it is Grey Cup weekend. What is the wife of a man with Grey Cup tickets to do on Grey Cup weekend? Drive up north for a Santa Claus parade of course!
The girls and I set off to my parents house right after Elspeth’s swimming class on Saturday morning. We stopped in Brechin and the Orillia for short but wonderful playdates with a group 204/5 and a group 268 China sisters. Seeing my girls reconnect with family is always a nice experience. The fact that I too get a chance to chat with other moms is the cherry on the cake.
We ended up at my parents in time for dinner to hear that my dad is simply too ill to ride on his intended float. The girls were disappointed they wouldn’t get to see him on the float but more concerned about his health.(He is getting better but still looks and sounds horrible.) After a short drive to admire the various neighbourhood lights and a bath it was off to bed.
The highlight of today was the parade itself which was made even more special by the presence of fresh snow on the ground. Snow which begged to be played in and thrown. Katrine actually managed to make a pretty good snowball which hit me soundly in the side of the head – guess all of the catch we played this past summer did some good. Her aim is improving. Elspeth showed none of her reluctance from the start of winter last year. Nope, much more curious this go round. Will have to discuss with her the importance of not eating snow off of ones boot. Apparently it is “yum, yum, good.”
Okay, we saw the floats at the top of the hill and knew that it was show time. Bundled the girls into their chairs and they were happy as pie – even more happy once the candy canes began to arrive.
Now as I mentioned earlier, my dad was suppose to be riding on a float but had to bow out at the last minute due to health. He did however do a lot of work to help create said float and I think that they did a great job. It was one of the best in the parade (I may be a bit biased being a daddy’s girl and all).
He is a member of the Loyal Order of the Pumpkin which is a fancy sounding name for a group of fun loving people who get together to celebrate pumpkins. In the spring they have a party and pass out seeds.(The pumpkin which we grew and subsequently carved at Halloween came from this year’s batch of seeds.) The various order members plant and tend the seeds hoping to grow the biggest pumpkin. While waiting for said seeds to grow they participate in the area Canada Day parade. Then come October, the pumpkins are harvested and the biggest wins a prize. The celebrations are completed with the order’s participation in the local Santa Claus parade. Such a simple way to have tons of fun. The order created a brand new float this year honouring the cartoon classic – Charlie Brown’s Christmas.
The little wagon at the very back was the girls’ favourite part. I think it was pretty ingenious myself.
Shortly after we saw the big guy arrive.
They we went just down the street to the local fire hall where the festivities continued (we don’t have anything like this round where we live but it was lovely to see the community coming together). There was hot chocolate and timbits for the kids. Balloon animals and face painting. There was also the big man himself sitting in the corner ready to listen to the holiday wishes of all the waiting children. Katrine was raring to go whereas Elspeth is still not sure of the whole Santa-as-a-real-guy thing. I would suggest that you enjoy the group photo with Santa as it may be the only time that I can get Elspeth near him all season.
I must add that an old family friend played Santa and did an exceptional job. When Elspeth was too busy clinging to me to say what she wanted, he thought to ask her big sister for help. Katrine left him with a huge smile on her face feeling extra important…and that was before she learned that this Santa gave out real gifts!!! As you can see from Katrine’s face she was thrilled. Elspeth refused to look at the camera, being super tired by this point, so you will have to be satisfied with this side view.