Summer Bucket List

  • -- Go hiking at Beaver Creek
  • -- Find a new splash park
  • -- Make a salad from our garden
  • -- Go strawberry picking
  • -- Go to the Berry Barn for berry picking and waffles
  • -- Go to the zoo
  • -- Make watermelon juice
  • -- Run in the sprinklers
  • -- Bike to River Landing after supper
  • -- Make our own ice cream
  • -- Go to Pike Lake
  • -- Go camping
  • -- Go to the Children's Festival
  • -- Go to Ribfest
  • -- To to Taste of Saskatchewan
  • -- Make lemonade
  • -- Get ice cream at the bus

Monday, October 10, 2016


A while ago, Eleanor found a shiny gold bead at the park, and carried it around in her shoe until it was time to go home. She kept it in her drawer of preciouses. She spent tens of minutes washing it in the sink, and I kept saying, Be careful, our sinks don't have stoppers, if it falls down the drain then it's gone and we can't get it back.

And then one day it fell down the drain.

She was devastated. And Grandma was coming to babysit that evening, so I wrote Grandma a card at Eleanor's dictation, asking that if Grandma came across a bead in her travels, would she mail it to Eleanor (we have lived far from family for so long that this is the only way Eleanor understands to get things to people).

The next morning, I got a text saying that Eleanor might have mail at the door, she should check. It was a bead.

That was weeks ago, and she still talks about it all the time.

This is the kind of thing that wouldn't have been possible in Saskatoon, both the babysitting and the next-day hand-delivery of the bead. It snowed in Saskatoon last week and I felt so nostalgic. Snow is fun; rain is garbage weather. I still miss Josie so much. But we spent this weekend hanging out with my family,

with Joel's family,

and with our own little nuclear family, which is not the only family we have anymore.

Happy Thanksgiving.

Sunday, September 18, 2016

A catch-up

Buncha photos hanging out on my computer, taking up space. Look! My father-in-law built me some garden beds!

Eleanor has reached an age of being actually helpful about stuff. I can leave her with the hose and be like, Please water everyone thx be back in 10.

We didn't plant until mid-July, for obvious reasons, but things have been doing alright. Potato patch:

POTATO PATCH! Gotta dig that guy up soon!

Tomato row:


(In all honesty, tomato row is not doing super well. I only managed six cherry tomato plants this year and one of them died and the rest aren't producing super prolifically, so the girls go out every day and fight over the handful of semi-ripe tomatoes and none of them ever get to red unless we are out of town for a bit. NEXT YEAR I WILL DO BETTER.)

Garden beds:


My parents brought me a housewarming kale when they came to help us move in, and it died a little bit when I transplanted it to the garden but now you can see it is a MONSTER. Also monstrous are my cucumbers. Geneva loves to get her hands on a massive one and just carry it around for the day.


I have never once managed to bring carrots to term, but I've also always been racing against the Saskatoon ground freeze. I thinned my carrots the other day and they are actually growing and I should be able to leave them for another month at least, so we might get carrots!

Other news. One of my many Sads in leaving Saskatoon is because it's where Eleanor spent her toddler years, and all of my memories are tied up with her hilarious little toddler self. I mean. Look at this little bald hamhock, can barely see out a window. 


The Olympics were a thing that happened. We made medals to celebrate. 

Eleanor, listing off Olympic sports that she knows: 'Olympic diving, Olympic jumping, gymnastics with a ball, punching, strong time...'

We ate a lot of suppers in front of the tv, and there has never been more Jumping Off Of Stuff Or Over Each Other.

Geneva would do this 'slow emotion' walk, I died every time.

I took the girls to Coneheads, ice cream parlour of my late teens/early 20s/camp counselor years.

Geneva takes the daintiest licks, and her mouth is so small, and her tongue likewise, and it was the hottest day and that ice cream dripped all over her dress.

Eleanor helped her finish it. 'Don't bite it, Ewwonah! Just WICK it! DON'T BITE IT.'

They have spent a non-zero amount of the past month decorating themselves (and each other! And ME!) with pipe cleaners.

Thursday, September 15, 2016

Fall is falling!

We are creating ourselves a butt groove in the armchair of Chilliwack. Eleanor started school!

She was nervous about it earlier in the summer, because she went to this daycamp and on the first day, she cried when I left her, and I have never had to leave her crying anywhere! It was traumatizing for both of us! So she was like, I might cry on the first day of preschool. And I was like, You might! But then she ended up at the same school as her cousin and she was FINE and today she was like, I'm so happy because I get to go to school.

Meanwhile, Geneva's in Eleanor's bedroom while she's gone, and I peek my head in and she's like, I wassn't doing nuffink, mama.

Both girls started rhythmic gymnastics this week ('ribnick,' says Eleanor. 'Dimnaskicks,' says Geneva) and it is hilarious.

and we went apple picking!

We were going to go last week but then I had to go grocery shopping for camping so we rescheduled, fortuitously. Look at that weather.

Look at dis baby in a wagon.

Look at dese baby goats!

Wash your hands, guys, they're all goaty.

We picked big old bags of honey crisps, and then when the lady rang them up and was like, $12 please, and also, here is a fun thing we do, if you were at Safeway this bag would be *boop de boop* $48! I found that deeply satisfying; thanks, apple lady. Also, I bought this hiLARyus pumpkin and I love it so much and I have so many plans for it.

Sunday, September 11, 2016

The rest of the best (week ever).

Remember the Funnest Week Ever that Eleanor was having? I meant to keep blogging about that but then our internet was down for FIVE DAYS, so Eleanor continued to have a fun week but Joel and I were like, This whomps. But ok so there was this random festival at Garrison Heights, where we don't actually live because I like having a yard. But there was a porcupine!

The girls got their faces painted and the dentist was handing out free popsicles.

Look at this sass cat.

Balloon animals, climbing wall, bouncey castles.

And then we went looking for a treat and we were like, Mini donuts? Fancy poutine? But it was SO HOT so we just went back to the dentist and each got another free popsicle and sat by the live band until it was so so so late, and then we went home.

THE NEXT DAY (the festival was like the day after we took Eleanor and Hazel to the adventure park, so you can see how the week just got funner and funner), we went to my parents' house for the weekend because Joel was on 72 hours worth of call and WE CAN JUST DO THAT NOW, we can just skip town instead of eyeballing each other like...So. Anyway. We took them on the skytrain and then down to the Vancouver Library, which blew their minds.

LOOK HOW BIG IT IS. And then we went to On Yogurt for ice-fried yogurt (it's a thing, it's delicious) and to play tiny foosball.

And the NEXT day we were still at Papa and Gigi's, and the NEXT day we went to Grandma and Grandpa's for supper!

And the NEXT day Joel had off, and we went to Harrison for the morning! But all those pictures got eaten by my phone, apparently!

And the NEXT day we went strawberry picking with friends!

And there were alpacas!

And then we ran into the girls' cousins on purpose or unexpectedly for FIVE DAYS RUNNING. Everything is basically the best.

Saturday, September 10, 2016

Ok now summer can be done.

We went CAMPING and it was MARVELOUS. The weather forecast for the week was all like GONNA BE A BUNCHA RAIN, and then the forecast for next week, when Eleanor is in school and Joel is back to work and we have plans, was all like GONNA BE SUNNY ALWAYS YOU'RE GONNA NEED SHORTS. But! Because we expected rain for all four days, every second that it wasn't raining, we were like, This is lovely.

Also, I'm always kind of worried about what we will DO camping? I mean, if it's cold and you can't swim, what do you even. But I forget that my kids are both avid colorers

and nerds

and they spent an unexpected amount of time drawing in the ground with enormous sticks that we found on our hike

and also we went on a hike!

And grandma and grandpa came to visit one evening!

Also, there was a playground!

And then this weird stump behind our tent that Eleanor referred to as The Mouse Kingdom, so obviously I put some little critters on it.

That was a huge hit, actually.

Lotta mileage out of that stump.

And. AND! It got warm enough to go dabble our feet in the lake and make sandcastles and things

and we even brought a little picnic down there. Geneva, you are terrible at hummus.

Geneva just wanted to crouch on the end of the dock and look for fishies, so I taught her how to lay down and greatly lower the possibility of plunging headfirst in after them.

Also, she thinks that fish eat rocks and I'm not gonna disabuse her of that because LOOK AT HER SHE THINKS SHE'S FEEDING THEM.

Speaking of feeding. We ate hobo packets!

And chili dogs!

Or just dogs, whatever. Eat a dang carb, Geneva.

We taught the girls about dipping their potatoes and sausage into 'the egg sauce.'

We had a stash of apples from Grandma's tree.

And we ate so many s'mores.

Everyone slept so well except me because *I* got sick, but better me than them because I'd rather lie awake thinking my thoughts than sit awake trying to comfort a sick kid.

I had super low expectations for this trip because the weather was supposed to be so lousy, because Geneva got sick right beforehand, because we were going for three nights rather than our usual two. But it was SUPER GREAT and now we are filthy and Eleanor has been wearing the same braids for four days and I'm gonna go have the best shower of my life. A+ end of summer.