March 31, 2011

A really good day.

We went to Disneyland yesterday. We had a great day.

Here is the list of characters we saw today: Belle, Ariel, Cinerella, Snow White, Aurora, Jasime and Aladdin, Mary Poppins and Burt, Pluto, Goofy, Giepetto, Rapunzel and Flynn, Mickey and Minnie Mouse. And the best little evil queen ever.

March 29, 2011

A beautiful day in our neighbourhood!

Here are some pictures by the pool. It was 32C by the pool this afternoon. Julie went home today. Yesterday she and I went to Cabazon for the day. 7 hours of shopping fun. She is now the proud owner of a Coach purse. Last night we celebrated the trip and the March birthdays with a trip to the Cheesecake Factory. I think I can sum up the whole evening, for all of us, by saying: it was awesome and we all ate too much. Tomorrow... Disney.

March 27, 2011

We're here!

All is well. We arrived in Palm Springs safely. Although I would like to say that keeping 3 very tired kids awake and maneuvering them through the Las Vegas airport was easier in thought than in reality. We got everyone into the rental van and off we went. We left Las Veags at 11pm local time (1 am for our brains). Scott drove and we arrived at the condo just before 3am. Julie had everything all ready for us and after some brief hellos we all fell into bed, gratefully. To say the kids are excited to be spending time with Julie is a bit of an understatement. All of the kids keep randomly blurting out how happy they are to be with Julie in Palm Springs. They want to show her everything but mostly the pool! So far we have explored the grocery store (for snacks) and the local Target (for stuff). We've swam and ate at Ruby's. Life is good. We've driven out Cabazon but only as a teaser shop because Scott was frantic to buy some Crocs. The only reason he wants them is to annoy me as I think they are the ugliest shoes ever- they offend me on levels I can hardly describe. But when we found a small store that sold them he did not buy them because they were $40! Uh, yeah. He thought they were $8 everywhere- just like the faux-crocs at Walmart. We planned on walking around a little bit but it was cold and windy on the Cabazon side of the mountain where it had been sunny and warm in Palm Springs and we were all dressed for Palm Springs. So we didn't get very far. I would just like to note for the record that so far SCOTT has bought 4 pairs of shoes (well 3 pairs of shoes and 1 pair of faux-crocs), 4 shirts, 2 ties and 1 t-shirt. But don't worry... Julie and I will get back later. It was a easy bedtime for us last night. The formula is: a little bit of sun and warm+ swimming+ a very busy week+ a previous day of long travel = a good nights sleep. Scott, Julie and forced ourselves to stay up until 9:30pm before we all gave up and called her a night. There are only so many episodes of Drive-in, Diners and Dives we can watch without needing to eat.

March 24, 2011

What is this... the third act of Romeo and Juliet?

I paraphrase but we have a plague about our house. This is becoming a really bad pre-vacation tradition.

Here's the tally: (so far)

Olivia: 2 ears infected, pink eye, virus and unconfirmed strep throat
Georgia: fever, unconfirmed strep throat
Finn: confirmed strep throat, lump on his neck (swollen lymph node), fever, bad patch of eczema on his leg, pink eye
Jen: confirmed strep throat, UTI or kidney stones (Please be only really bad UTI!)
Scott: pink eye

Our family has become the poster family for the number one reason why other people hate to fly on the same plane as families. We are even less popular than crying or colicy babies and the chatty person in the adjacent seat that wants to talk about her bunion surgeries or her aching hemmoroids. Yep, that's us.

All I have to say is... Awesome! And when I say awesome I really mean F***!

March 22, 2011

Dance Recital #1 Cancelled

The dance recital for this evening is cancelled due to bad road conditions and pissy weather.

I'll keep you posted on tomorrow's recital.

March 20, 2011

On Your Mark...

We have 2 dance recitals- for all 3 kids, 1 spring registration night, 1 appointment with the Ear, Nose, Throat specialist in Portage, 1 appointment to get Scott's hearing tested, 1 birthday and the need to pack for 5 of us! Oh yeah, school and work too. Just a normal week!

If I am really good I will make an appointment for all kids to see the local doctors BEFORE we leave on our trip. It is just my luck that they will all develop ear infections on Thursday. Believe it or not it is NOT my personal goal to end up at the doctor's or in the hospital on every vacation.

Wish me luck. Have a good week.

March 19, 2011

Counting Blessings

At the end of the Friday, March 11th I was able to tell Scott that perhaps I had raised the bar for my worst day ever but I was still going to consider myself really, really lucky. I counted many blessings that day. It could have gone a lot differently.

For the past week I have been trying to find a way to express myself on what happened. After much thought I have decided that I will count my blessings.

  1. It was a horrifying day on a global level- the earthquake in Japan. My heart aches for the good people of Japan. I am grateful that I can do SOMETHING to help. Please donate to the Canadian Red Cross.

  2. Waking to news of a- literally- world shaking event is awful enough but waking with the knowledge that the earthquake caused a tsunami travelling at 500 mph towards the Hawaiian islands. I counted 5 HUGE blessing as that was number of family members to NOT be swept away or trapped in a tsunami. They had lots of warning and were safe enough on the 12th floor.

  3. The road conditions were quite bad in and around the Virden area- highways were closed all over the place. I was scheduled to be in Waskada (1h 15 minutes from Virden) for the morning to finish interviewing for an inspectors. I was thankful that we successfully rearranged for the interviews to be done in Virden since 4 out of the 5 people involved for the day were all in Virden. And that the one fellow who did travel arrived safely.

  4. I was thankful that the highways eventually did open and the kids, the cats and I were able to leave Virden. Scott had bought tickets for the Boys (Finn, Scott and Dave) to go to the Monster Truck show at the MTS Centre in Winnipeg for Saturday, March 12th. Finn had really been looking forward to the show. We got out of town. (This was definitely a mixed blessing as I would have saved us a LOT of trouble had we just stayed home.)

  5. I am thankful that we made it all the way to Austin before we encountered REALLY bad whiteout weather conditions. Did I mention that the weather was really, really bad?

  6. I was grateful that our cat Howard stopped doing his Al Pacino in Attica impression in his car carrier. He eventually calmed down. Obviously this was the kitten's first long car ride. FYI: hysterical cats are NOT fun travelling companions especially in already tense driving situations.

  7. I was thankful for the DVD player in the van and the various ipods and DSi games that kept the kids occupied and quite oblivious to the raging weather outside. Every once in a while G would ask "Momma, can YOU see anything?" and I would mumble something about having better visibility from the front. I was lying.

  8. I was thankful that we got to Portage la Prairie safely. Yes, I drove a solid 50 km almost completely blind and on terrible roads but we got there.

  9. I am grateful that I had my cell phone fully charged and with me but it didn't work. I was extra grateful to have found a pay phone in Portage. My cell reception was sketchy and I was getting blocks of increasingly panicked texts from Scott asking if we were okay. I was not able to send anything while driving and once we got to Portage all cell lines were blocked. So it was good to reassure him that we were okay.

  10. I am grateful for my children's positive attitude and sense of adventure. When we were unable to find an available hotel room and I told them that we may be sleeping in our van they thought that was okay. Even when we were in the Walmart parking lot and in middle of a raging blizzard. After the 4th visit to an unavailable hotel Finn's wise words were "Well, there goes Plan D. What's Plan E Momma?" "Um, Gimme a minute, Baby" was my answer.

  11. I was thankful that I came up with a Plan E... I decided to call the only people I even vaguely knew in Portage and ask, beg if necessary, if we could please bunk with them for the night. They were home. They graciously said yes. (Thankyou!thankyou!thankyou!) I can not adequately express how I felt when we got safely to their house and I could actually put away the thought of the all of us in the van for the night.

  12. Again to the positive attitude of the kids in thinking that this was the "funnest sleepover ever". Whereas I wanted a drink.

  13. I was extra grateful to the neighbours of our hosts for having had a plunger to help deal with the plugged and copiously flushed toilet as a direct result of my children. (OMG! can this trip get any better?!) I was, again, extra grateful that no lasting damage was done to their newly renovated bathroom and now slightly flooded basement. (How do you casually ask someone you barely know if you can buy them a plunger and a bottle of Lysol?) Another blessing was that this happened in the morning of the next day. If it had happened the night before I might have just cracked.

  14. The weather cleared and the highways reopened after a lovely breakfast with our new friends. We packed quickly and bolted to Winnipeg before the kids could break their new lamps or something.

  15. Finn arrived on time, with 20 minutes to spare, for his Monster Truck show. Scott met us downtown.

  16. After 45 minutes at the Monster Truck show Finn had decided that he'd had enough and that it was time to go home. I am grateful that Scott was patient enough to explain to Finn that I had expended a lot of effort to get him there for the show and that they will be staying for the whole show. Scott bought a $25 t-shirt and an $8 snack and they were solid for the next 1h 15 minutes.
  17. The girls and I went shopping for the afternoon with Norma and Tammy. It was grand and the girls had a ball.
  18. Scott and the kids made it home again on sunday in a very quiet and very uneventful ride home while I stayed in Winnipeg for work. In a typical Manitoba storm we got two days of bad weather and it went right back to being lovely the next day.

So many blessings were counted. I do feel that we were quite lucky in the whole ordeal. I am NOT eager to do it again.

Another blessing ot be counted- on an unrelated note- I got my renewed passport in the mail this week. I can go on vacation with my family next week. Yahoo! Count me in for a pina colada by the pool. Maybe two!

March 7, 2011

The race is on... and other odds and sods

I am on the race committee for the 2nd annual Virden 10km run and 3km Family Run/Walk. I have a meeting in a few minutes so this will be a short one tonight. We are deciding on a date for the race. Details will follow when available.

We are preparing for the dance recitals and the first step in that is final dress rehearsal this week. I'm not sure how I am going to get everyone to the Aud on time and in costume this week but I guess I'll figure it out as I go.

Monster Truck show this weekend for the boys. Big Fun!