Monday, September 30, 2013

Ballet Class

Katie was very excited for her first ballet class.

Scott started piano lessons a few weeks ago and Katie sat with R for the hour lesson. Last week they noticed a class of little ballet girls in a studio across the hall. Katie was absolutely enthralled and silently jealous. Since she was just going to be sitting idle in the same building anyway, R inquired about enrollment. It was a great deal and perfect timing, so we went for it. All that was left was to get a cute pink outfit and some shoes.

On the big day Katie had a bath in the morning and had her hair pulled back tight. She stood in front of the washer and then dryer to watch her new ballet outfit get washed and then dried. Grandma came with her to her class and said that Katie listened very carefully and did everything she was asked.

Friday, September 27, 2013

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Family Photos at Big Hill Springs

We were going to Big Hill Springs with R's family so we brought our camera along for some photos -- photo credits to Jenny. Vote for your favourites.












Wednesday, September 11, 2013

First Day of Playschool

Katie won't be old enough for kindergarten for another 2 years, and R doesn't really want to send her off to a daily preschool. Instead, she has arranged with 3 other moms with 3-year-olds to hold a weekly "playschool" which will rotate among the 4 houses. It's all pretty low-key and composed mostly of just playing together, but they try make sure there is one structured activity each time.

The first session was at our house. Katie's big box of princess dresses was a big hit. However, there are three girls and one boy, so it was fortunate that Scott has a big box of superhero costumes. Little J played the part of ninja Spiderman for the duration.

We have been slowly outfitting our basement with any and all play equipment that we can think of. One of the recent additions is a new TV that is connected to an old digital camera. The kids loooove to just watch themselves on the TV.

We have also connected the tablet to the TV so the kids can run a kiddie karaoke app. In addition to the lyrics, the screen shows two children doing actions to the songs. Katie loves to mimic the dancers.

All in all, it was a great first day. Katie is so excited to be going to her playschool with all her friends. Nice work mom!

Saturday, September 07, 2013

Hip Trip

It was a whirlwind visit, but we had family in town visiting for approximately 18 hours this weekend.

Months ago I got a note from my oldest brother Joel. He had noticed that the Tragically Hip were going to play an outdoor concert in Calgary in September and he wanted to come up. We got tickets and he made plans to drive up from Utah and pick up my other older brother Cam in Montana on the way. A lot of the details changed in the week leading up to the actual trip. For a while my dad planned to come but then he was back out again. In the end, Joel dropped by Pocatello and he jumped in my mom's convertible to drive to Montana to pick up Cam. Apparently, he was pretty cramped sitting in the backseat of that car -- and they didn't even consider lowering the roof, since it POURED rain the duration of the trip.

We parked near Dave's house and walked through SAIT to get to the CTrain. It was a bit surreal for Joel & Cam to be walking the halls of the same complex where we had all had basketball camp every summer for years. It's not the kind of place that would show up on your bucket-list for a Calgary trip, but it was still pretty cool to see the place.

The concert itself was awesome. The rain slowed to a drizzle and we had a great view of the stage. There was something great about being together with the boys, singing along to the songs of our youth. Joel saw the Hip at the Silver Dollar Action Center (a glorified bowling alley) in 1989 for their first Calgary gig before anyone knew much about them. In the years that followed we just about wore out that first Hip tape from playing it in the car. It's funny, Dad got so sick of it that he officially prohibited the Hip in the car, so Cam used the edge of a coin to scrape all the words off the side of the cassette so that only we knew what was playing as we rolled along in our brown Aerostar minivan... the same van we took off a jump one Saturday night after going to Peter's Drive-In.

It seeemed only fitting that we should make a post-concert run to Peter's. Peter's is one of those fixtures that never seems to change. It's comforting to know you can always come to this spot and get a burger and your favourite milkshake.

Cam went back to his foul ways, ordering a lime & butterscotch shake potent enough to use as a paint-stripper. Nasty stuff.

I had a great time. Scott and Katie were a bit sad that nobody brought any kids, but we told them that sometimes adults get playdates too.

Tuesday, September 03, 2013

First Day of Grade One

Ready for another year of school! Now he gets to stay all day and eat lunch and have recess and everything. Scott noticed that hardly anyone from his kindergarten class is in his new class, so he is already making lots of new friends.

Labour Day

For the last three years Scott and I have gone to the Labour Day Classic football game to see the Stampeders play the Eskimos. We have had the benefit of free tickets each time (including the year that I won a free pair by dancing with pom poms). When Labour Day came around this year, we didn't have any free tickets. I thought about buying some, but instead, we figured out a free version to enjoy our favourite part of the game:

We parked near the stadium and walked to the south end to watch the CF-18s buzz the stadium right after the national athem. They circled over Glenmore Reservoir and then came roaring back for a second pass (which is the one I got on video). It was awesome.

Afterwards, we listened to the game on the radio as we drove to Peter's and got milkshakes with Oreo & butterscotch. Total cost was $9.50, and this time Katie got to take part in the action.

We spent much of the rest of the day sorting through the basement to make more space for some of the new play equipment we've acquired.

Here are some quotes:
S: What are you doing with those shirts?
R: Getting rid of them because they're too small for Dad.
D: Actually, they're too big. I got them when I was a little bit fatter.
S: So are you going to throw them away?
D: No, we'll take them to the Goodwill store.
S: Oh yeah. They have lots of fat shirts at Goodwill. All of them fat.

S: What do we do next?
D: We need to have family night.
S: Oh yeah. And we need to have a treat. And it needs to be sugary.
R: It needs to be sugary?
S: If it's not sugary, then it's not family night.

Family night was memorable. We did blessings for going back to school, which was very sweet. Afterwards, we played hide-and-seek. We added in a stuffed gorilla as someone who could hide, since we don't have that many people to play.

When it was time for bed Scott struggled to get to sleep. I went in and sat in his room, which often is enough to help him relax. When the lights were off and we were sitting in the darkness he said, "Dad, I can't wait for tomorrow... to go to my school, and to have recess, and the new playground."