A visit to the Marsh with Grandpum

Looking for snakes with Baba.
Looking for snakes with Baba.


Trying to catch minnows and water striders with Grandpum to get a better look.
Trying to catch minnows and water striders with Grandpum to get a better look.











Oh, they climbed the look out tower too and saw a lot of birds.
Oh, they climbed the look out tower too and saw a lot of birds.









The girls LOVE going to the Wye Marsh with their grandfather and this weekend was no exception.  So off to the Marsh we went.  We discovered waterlillies in bloom, birds, insects, bugs and secret steams.  A great journey into the woods.

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Canada Day Parade…Kinda

The plan was that the girls would join their grandfather on a float in the Canada Day parade up at my parents.  At the first, it seemed that everything was set.  The girls were dressed in their orange and were eager to join grandpa on the Loyal Order of the Pumpkin Float.  The parade started and….the float broke.  We ended up with two sad girls BUT the day was salvaged.

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After rescuing the girls from the broken down float, there were lollipops, burgers/hotdogs, fries and juice.  We followed that up with an animal zoo (Elspeth got to touch a turtle!! Katrine held a snake! and we held nothing!), face painting, balloon animals and puppets.  We discovered that Elspeth finds ventriloquist disconcerting… maybe even downright scary.  The balloon animals were worth the wait because of the balloon artist.  He had a duckling who he shared with the kids and he was a teacher on vacation so had a great ventriloquist with the kids.  Elspeth pushed him by asking for a shark.  In the end, both girls were delighted with their balloons. During face painting, Elspeth revealed that she has a blooming interest in superheros…could we have a future comicon attendee in our midst?

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Then we ended the day with dinner out beside the harbour, sparklers and some time in the sprinkler. Oh, and Katine tried to teach her younger sister how to cartwheel…not there yet.  Inspite of the float debacle, it was a fun celebration.

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Mehndi, Bubble Snakes and Strawberries

Now that is quite a combo isn’t it?  That however, has been the last week or so.  We finished it all off with Katrine’s final project of the year which was due today.  It was the food chain and I don’t think that I have seen her so thrilled to simply be done in a while.  This year she has enjoyed many more of the projects but her favourite part of this particular one was finishing it.

I was given some mehndi recently so decided to take advantage of it and decorate my children.  The designs are nothing fancy.  In fact, on one of Elspeth’s feet it clearly states the name of her favourite cartoon but hey, she is thrilled.  Katrine of course, opted for more of a skating centered decoration while I tried for pretty.  If you look closely, you can see that Elspeth was so excited about me “drawing on her” that she even wrote about it in her homework journal.

Elspeth wrote, “I have mehndi.  It is cool.”

Last month I went searching for fun things to do during prep with one of the classes at my school.  I came up with a number of great ideas along the way for both school and home.  So far we have tried frozen banana slices (which only I enjoy), frozen yogurt dots ( a hit) and corn starch & water “chalk” paint.  This weekend we tried another new idea from (http://www.housingaforest.com/rainbow-bubble-snakes).  It worked!!!  The girls had a blast.  Not only did it actually blow long “snakes” but they kept holding toghther once they fell off the blower.  I think that our next project will be to give the pop bottle sprinkler a go!

We finished up the weekend with strawberry picking.  Of course this meant that there is strawberries and cream for dessert as well as strawberries and chocolate.  It also meant hot fun full of giggles and smiles.  Both of the girls enjoy getting out and picking the berries; not to mention taste testing as they went.  I like that they get a sense of the amount of work behind harvesting the food that we eat.  Unfortuanetly the raspberries were not yet ready so we may need to go back.

Our haul.

If you look closely, you can see the ring of red around Elspeth’s mouth.



Random June Fun

We have been all over the place thus far this month.  The wrap up of the school year tends to do that to us.  So far we have had 3 school BBQs:

Katrine’s school (no photos cause I forgot the memory card 😥 )

Katrine’s After school

(Yup, Elspeth is finally big enough to get on some inflatables)

Elspeth’s Daycare BBQ

Elspeth ran around this little trike circle for about 16 laps.  She fell asleep pretty quickly tonight.

We all went down to the ROM to see the Forbidden City exhibit which was quite interesting.  The highlight for me was actually getting to see imperial robes and their needlework up close (as wonderful as in pictures).

Still loves to examine the rocks and minerals

Really enjoyed the dinosaurs.  Perhaps having just finished a dinosaur unit peeked her interest.

Elspeth got to play with the big band during one evening practise which was pretty exciting.  She also got proper drumsticks this past weekend.  Now all that is left is to find an appropriate drum.

Katrine had a great time performing in her school’s arts evening at the local theater.  It was fabulous.  Everyone involved put in a lot of hard work.  We were really proud of her.

Celiac Conference, Calgary & 45 years

This past weekend Glenn and the girls enjoyed a quiet time together.  They ran errands, watched cartoons, read books and took quite a few trips to the park.  Quality father daughters bonding time.  Where was mom?  Eating on the other side of Canada.

This year’s Canadian Celiac Association Conference was in Calgary.  My mom and I really enjoying going to the conferences together so as part of my 40th, they gifted me airfare to Calgary.  Off I went after work on Friday.  I didn’t arrive until late but there was delicious goodies awaiting me – perogies, fruit, a lemon poppy seed muffin and skor cookies.  All gluten free of course and simply scrumptious.  After a long flight and missing my girls it was the perfect end to the day. (Now the full bed to myself with its mound of pillows didn’t hurt either).

In the lobby waiting to go in to the seminars.

The next morning we were up bright and early to hit the breakfast and seminars.  Each time we go to the conference I learn something new.  Of course, right next door was the exhibit hall with its free samples.  Oh how I ate – coconut milk ice cream, cookies, pizza, perogies…. My highlights were the coconut milk ice cream by Screamin Brothers (really intense fresh flavours can’t wait until it hits the shelves in Ontario), the cinnamon dessert pizza (Coco Brooks) and the perogies (Stella’s Perogies).  I also found gluten free Goldfish Puffs.  I didn’t try them until getting home but delicious!  Then there was the buns provided at lunch.  Heaven.  Soft, untoasted yumminess.  They alone have me wanting to go back to Calgary.  Thank you to Care Bakery.  Sandwich and bread deliciousness.  Is that it?  Oh no, I still have some GF meat sticks that I am hoping the girls will eat (not spicy – Grimms), new healthier takes on the traditional sesame sticks (can’t recall the company name), some GF Breton crackers awaiting sampling…mmm, food.

One of the free samples.  I didn’t know that Stax were also GF.

It wasn’t all about the food and an auto immunie disease; I did manage to get outside.  Heck, by lunch when I was full (only until it was time for an afternoon snack) mom and I along with a fellow conference attendee ventured out to enjoy the sunshine along the main tourist strip.  It was a beautiful day and I rather enjoyed getting out and stretching my legs.

The pedestrian strip

The suffragettes statues was one of my favourites as was the one depicting the heights of the various hills and mountains around the city.

The girls would have loved splashing around in here.

Once the day’s sessions had finished, we all headed out to the nearby mall to visit the Devonian Gardens.  Mall?  Gardens?  Doesn’t sound like something you see everyday and it is not.  It is located on the top floor of the mall and offers a nice oasis situated near the food court.  I quite enjoyed the tranquility.

From there we went to the Fairmount for a nice dinner (yup, even more GF goodness).  Dad wanted to do something nice for mom becaue the next day was their 45th wedding anniversary.  At the end of the meal, our came dessert complete with sparkler and chocolate message.  Mom’s face just lit up.  Oh and it was gluten free too!

Steak and roasted garlic & potatoe soup (GF) with vegge.

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I was sad to leave my oasis of gluten freeness and return to reality but at the same time happy because it meant coming home to my Glenn and the girls.  Overall it was a great weekend.