Tuesday, August 30, 2011


We hardly call her baby anymore.  Her mark on the wall is two and a half inches higher than it was six months ago.  Today I allowed her out of the safety of the shopping cart at Wal-Mart and let her walk with big sister.  Everyday she has a new word, her communication is improving, and there is less frustration.  She is crafting and taking turns and riding bikes and going down waterslides and putting on her own shoes...

She is two.

On the occasion that I say, "where's our baby?"  Callie is quick to remind me, "mom, she's a toddler, not a baby." 

Oh ya, I forgot. 

But she is still my baby.

The other night we started out with our regular bedtime routine... a snuggle in the rocking chair, a cup of milky, her blankie, me running my fingers through her fine, sun-bleached hair... when I got up to put her in her crib she complained, she wanted more. 

I held her in my arms and I began doing deep knee bends, the bounce and hop step that I had perfected during the entire first year of her life as it was the only way that seemed to soothe those mysterious things called colic and reflux...and she still loved it.

As I was bouncing and swaying and soaking up the love from my baby I recalled something I had read in one of those new mom books, back before Callie was born, back when I had more time on my hands.  The passage was about "starting as you mean to go on" and the gist of it was a warning for parents who carry their infants around in order to get them to sleep.  It challenged them to try doing that for half an hour with a twenty-pound sack of potatoes.  "Is that what you want to be doing a few months from now?"

Well, sister is over thirty pounds. 

And ya, I still want to be doing it a few months from now. 

And I used to do it because she needed it. 

And now I do it because I need it. 


Whenever we put a bathing suit on Lexi she pats her toddler tummy with both hands and says, "beach, beach?" 

So sister had a backyard beach party to celebrate number two. 

 And it was awesome. 

And worth the time and effort.

It's ALWAYS worth it. 

My baby is two.  I don't know if one ever stops calling their baby, "Baby".  But I do know that I will likely continue to rock her to sleep and our morning rendez-vous will persevere...at least until one of us lets go.

Happy Birthday Baby.

Saturday, August 27, 2011


There are piles of laundry lying on the floor, bags of Kernals popcorn on the counter, a scattering of price tags ripped off new clothes, and a blow up Dora and Diego bouncing around...all evidence that a family vacation was had.

We spent five days in our province's capital city with no agenda other than having fun.  No work, no meetings, no commitments. Just five days do whatever we wanted within the realm of toting along a two and four year old, of course.

So where do you start when you're marching  to the beat of your own drum... the hotel pool, where else?  And for us small town people, staying at a hotel with a waterslide is a holiday in and of itself.  Callie went bananas for the bunk beds in the hotel room and immediately declared that she was sleeping on the top.  And to turn the excitement up just a little more, our room opened right up to the dinosaur theme pool!

This was a deluxe kid-cation full of firsts for our whole family.  We went to the Tinkertown amusement park for the first time and it was awesome.  Everybody is included...nobody gets left out here, young and old and in between...we all get to ride!  And I know this town is created for the littles but I had a blast.  I am definitely not one for thrill seeking rides so family train rides, lady bug rides, and mini roller coasters are just my speed!

Mom thinks mini roller coasters are awesome...

Dad, he's more of a cool cat...

Little sister loved this car...

Drive it like you own it baby!
We ventured from amusement parks to water parks to children's museums and I watched my girls play and laugh and try new things... jumping with excitement and enthusiasm shouting "what are we going to do next?" And this may have been a child centered vay-cay but honestly, there is no place I would rather have been.  When Callie says, "this is the best day ever, mom" she doesn't realize that this time together with our little family, these are my best days ever, too.

Lexi liked that this cow moooed.  My little lover of all things milk...

Oh, and she also loves to glue...

I love, love, LOVE, when we get to have new experiences, growing together, learning together...making our memories.  And never in my wildest dreams would I have believed someone if they had told me that watching my children go down waterslides, seeing them sit proudly at their first movie in a theatre, or waiting for them to choose just the right treat from the candy train would cause my bucket to runneth over.  All these little things, these little experiences, are shaping my girls, making them who they are and who they will be in this world.

And now with our adventure behind us we need to settle back into home life and the reality of accomplishing the laundry and cleaning up the popcorn that is now spreading across the house like wildfire.

And we need to get ready to celebrate because little sister turned two. 

And now she needs a PARTY!  Gotta go.

Just one more...

Oh, and the optical illusion exhibit rocked...

Ok, that's it.  Really gotta go.

Sunday, August 21, 2011

The Race is On.

If the first day of school is the official finish-line for the race that is summer...then we have two weeks left until we burst through that red tape.  And we plan to bear down and give it our all as we sprint towards that finish line.  We have many things to accomplish on this homestretch and the best part...

"the dad" is on holidays.

Morning coffee on the deck...going to the beach...


flying kites and walking dogs...

...all of it is better with dad around.

In this last leg of the race I don't have much time to write all that I want to. 

There are suitcases on the floor calling my name.
And when we get home...

...she will be having a birthday celebration!

The race isn't over yet.

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Home Town

I have lived in the same town my entire life.  Born and raised as they say.  And some days I wonder what it would be like to live somewhere else... maybe in the city with its theatres and shopping and fine dining or in the country with its dusty roads and wide open spaces.  But in the summer time, there is no place like this little town that we call home. 

Our town has a completely underdeveloped tourism industry.  The potential is there for this place to burst in the summer months like other resort towns with its miles of lake shores laden with beaches and its waters filled with a myriad of fish...a fisherman's dream.  Water sports and camping.  Parks and pools.  Festivals and events.  Yes, our little town is a gold mine...or should I say zinc mine.

It sounds like I work for northern tourism!

  Hay Day at the Zoo

Big sister was so sweet...taking care of little sis, taking her shoes off and holding her hand...waiting for their turn on the bouncy slide.  Although,  when it was finally Lexi's turn, she said, "no way, where's my mama?"

It is only to our benefit that our tourism potential has not been reached.  My beach blanket never has to overlap with the people next to us.  We got some last minute campsites booked.  There were still openings in the summer swimming lessons.  And there wasn't another boat in the bay at Nana's and Papa's as the kids were pulled round and round and round.

I've been watching my big girl's confidence grow this summer.  Jumping off diving boards, off the back of boats, off the end of the dock...still with plenty of encouragement but she's doing it!  And Lexi, with all her timidness, has no fear of the water.  She always trying to keep up with the big kids. I often have to remind her that she's only turning two not five like big sister.

     This was actually a park day, not a beach day... bathing suits anyone?

As our summer days fly by, we will continue to fill our days enjoying our home town.   Taking the girls to beaches and parks and pools and community events.  I want them to know that it's OK to dream and wonder about far off places and maybe their lives will take them to some of the places they dream of...but it's also OK to bloom where you are planted.

We're happy to be planted on this beautiful piece of earth.  Good Night.