Happy 10th birthday Noah

Happy 10th birthday Noah

Today may youngest child turns 10 years old. That makes me feel both old and happy. I’m so proud of all my kids and the people they are growing into.

I’m sure this won’t last many more years but for now he is one of my best friends. Soon he’ll get too old and not want anything to do with his old dad. So for now I’ll take all the time I can to be with and play with him.

His sense of humour, his kindness, his confidence, and his determination, all things that can inspire me to be a better person and father for him.

Jen wrote a great post earlier as well which says things better than I do.

I was so glad the Grand Meetup didn’t overlap with his birthday this year so we could be here to celebrate with him. Thankfully the one year I was away from him on it my co-workers helped me wish him a birthday wishes.

I gathered a few pictures of Noah and I together over the years and saved them to this Google Photo Album if you want to check out how cute he is https://photos.app.goo.gl/adCDEZKT7cdbDWSc8

Happy Birthday Tiffany!

Today is my oldest sisters birthday! I’d make fun of her for getting old, but seeing as I’m her older brother that probably wouldn’t work very good.

We had a fun time celebrating her with her tonight and trying to recreate her first birthday. Here she is at age 1 and then some years after that 😉

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Wapuu Face Painting

This weekend we’ve been celebrating my nephew Gavin turning one year old! We started the day at Ross Farm Museum to get together with a bunch of friends. It lined up perfectly with our annual tradition of planting pumpkins which we can then come back later in the year to pick up.

As I’ve mentioned before our family likes Wapuu. When we first arrived both my niece Kaitlyn and I were wearing our Wapuunk t-shirts. I hadn’t worn mine in a while but figured a kids birthday party was a good time to break out a fun shirt like that. I guess Katie agreed with me 🙂

Later that night we got together again for a BBQ and backyard fire at my sisters house. Alexandria has a few face painting jobs coming up so she asked if she could bring along her paints to get some practice in. She didn’t bring any designs just asked the kids each what they wanted. Katie choose to get Wapuunk! Alex did a great job, if it hadn’t been getting close to time to leave I would have gotten one too so we really matched.

Christmas 2015

It’s amazing how much a difference a day can make. Yesterday was Christmas Eve, and it was a bit overwhelming. All the kids seemed to have too much stored energy and it was coming out and not always in the best ways. There was lots of bickering and arguing going on. It was a busy day with Jen and I working to get lots of headway made for today and meals last night.

Christmas for me is all about getting to spend time with family and friends. We are lucky enough to usually celebrate with multiple meals between getting together with my family and Jen’s. In years past though we have always had meals with Jen’s family at our house and meals with my family at my Mothers house. This year though we are doing both sets here.

There are lots of upsides to this because everyone gets to come to us and we don’t have to travel and hurry from one place to the next. It also means a lot of work getting meals ready, cleaned up, house presentable etc. Getting to be with everyone is worth it though, and the food is always excellent.

With all the prep work yesterday and the kids the way they were I ended up going for a run more or less to clear my head and get some time alone. I always feel better after a run and indeed it did help.

Today has been a different story. Because of all our hard work yesterday there wasn’t as much to do today. The kids let us sleep in until shortly after 7:00am which was lovely. We opened gifts with Jen’s family and celebrated my Mother In Laws birthday at the same time. My sister and her family came over for what has become our Christmas lunch tradition of enchiladas and quesadillas. Once we were done we took advantage of some amazing weather and went for a walk all together at the marsh. There were many other people out with the same idea.

When we got back I peeled some sweet potatoes for dinner and then, strictly because of the beautiful weather, I decided to go for a run again. For Christmas I had received a couple items of winter running wear but I’m very thankful I didn’t get to try them out today. Instead I went for my first short sleeved run in quite a while.

After a delicious Christmas/Birthday dinner in which I was able to control myself and not over do it on the desert, unlike last night, it was very nice to sit and relax for a bit.

Once everyone left though we did a final cleanup of the gifts so that we can make it through and sit in the living room without squishing anything. Now with the kids off to bed we can really relax, just Jen and I, with just the lights from the Christmas tree.

I’m very thankful to have so much family close by who we can share these special holidays with, it really does make the little bit of stress that comes along with the busy time of year all worth it.

Birthday Weekend

This past Friday was my 36th birthday. The same day Noah had a class trip to Noggins Corner Farm, so I took the day off and went with him and his class. It was a cold windy day but we still had a good time. Every time I go on a class trip though I gather more respect for teachers. They modestly remind me that not every day is like a class trip, but even eating lunch was an ordeal 🙂

Our little group flew through the corn maze and with them as the leaders we were the second group out with all our stamps. The farm also has a large play area with the kids loved playing on. Complete with a large tire mountain with tunnels running underneath it. Thankfully no game of king of the castle broke out because that could have been dangerous. The wind was so bad at one point that it blew over a large bridge structure that was in place with us all standing there. Thank goodness no kids were on or beside it when it happened or the results would not have been good.

Our walk through a bit of their trails to the apple orchard and pumpkin patch was really nice and the kids each were able to pick an apple for a snack and a pumpkin to take home at the end. They were instructed to pick small pumpkins so they could carry them, but there weren’t many small ones left so my arms ended up a bit sore as well.

That night at home we had a nice family dinner and Jen had a wonderful dessert made for me. Mini cherry cheesecakes with Wapuu toppers on them! My large number of years didn’t lend themselves to fitting on top of the cheesecake very well, but they still tasted delicious.

Saturday the kids decorated and carved their pumpkins and I was able to get a nice run in. My running hasn’t been as regular lately, but I’ve been exploring different trails that I’ve never been on all near my home, and with the autumn colours, and no set goal in mind, my runs have been more enjoyable that they have been for a long time. They were starting to become more chore like, but now it is just fun.

Starting in the afternoon we started at the mall trick or treating, it’s great for the younger kids and it’s cool to get together with friends and see everyones costumes in a warm light place.  From there we have a bit of a new tradition where we head out to a friends place with a bunch of our families for a quick dinner and then head out around their subdivision with the kids. We had a pretty big group of us going around. With all the loot they brought home I’m going to have to step up my will power game a bit more again.

That night however was not the best night once we arrived home. Between the time change and one of the kids up with the flu in the night there wasn’t a lot of sleep and an early wake up call. Who says you get an extra hour of sleep. It would be great to get rid of DST all together.

Surprise Date Night

Last night Jen surprised me pretty good. She had plans for a while to go to the movies last night with a friend. After supper as I was cleaning things up she surprised me to let me know that it was actually her and I who were going to movies and that my mother was on her way to look after the kids.

My first reaction was to surprise her back, so I told her that we couldn’t go because I had scheduled some meetings at work earlier for once the kids went to bed seeing as she wasn’t going to be around. I guess that was pretty mean, but I didn’t let it go on too long before I told her I was kidding.

We went to see the Intern which I had been wanting to see and it didn’t disapoint. It wasn’t a complex movie but it was perfect to go and watch with Jen so we could spend a bit of time just us.

After the movie I told Jen I was going to switch out my hoodies for a suit and tie everyday. Pretty sure that wouldn’t last very long though, having only one suit that doesn’t really fit me anymore.

The kids came home from school and were thoroughly confused as to what was happening. They came in the door than ran back out, “Why’s dad in a suit? He’s all dressed up, he’s even got that gel stuff in his hair”

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Happy Birthday Caile

September is a busy month in our house for Birthday’s. There’s Noah, my Father In Law, Alexandria, and today is Caile’s day! My little Caile turns eleven today.

She’s growing into a wonderful person with a great sense of humor, compassion, and a little smarty pants as well. Tonight when we were driving together and she was teaching me a bit of French. It’s almost pumpkin people time here and they are starting to set them up, but none of them have any heads yet. So she was teaching me sentences and conjugating verbs. Sentences like these:

Il n’a pas une tĂȘte (He doesn’t have a head). Je ne ai pas une tĂȘte (I don’t have a head). Il a une grosse tĂȘte (He has a big head). Il avait une tĂȘte (He had a head).

She thought I was pretty strange asking how to say all these different sentences and figured I probably wouldn’t ever be able to use them. Ha, I showed her, I used them in this post.

She’s also more organized than me. The other day we were rushing out the door to go meet the rest of the family. As we were driving she asked me, why are we rushing? It was 10:20, so I told her, we need to be there for 10:30 we’re going to be late. She laughed at me, it doesn’t start till 11:00. Guess who was right.

Happy eleventeenth birthday Caile!

Noah’s Birthday Party

Today we had Noah’s birthday party with all his friends. We rented the local community centre which has rooms you can have the part itself in and then access to the gym as well.

The party had a Skylanders theme. The plates, treat bags, some presents, and one of the games all related around Skylanders. The game is one that Jen created and it was a big hit.

The kids all sat in a circle in the middle of the gym and played pass the present. The idea is music gets played and you pass the present around the circle, when the music stops if you’re holding the present you’re out. If you were the last one you get to keep the present. This time there was a twist though. If you were out you came up to the big Punch Out Kaos board and punched out a space and inside was a piece of paper with a task to perform. When you perform your task you received a small prize.

Some of the tasks were easy like sing a nursery rhyme, do 10 jumping jacks, and lead a conga line through the gym. Last night I was helping Jen come up with some more tasks so I added ones like score a soccer goal on Sandy, and hit Sandy with a dodge ball. The kids seems to get a big kick out of them all and I got a bit of exercise in the process.

Happy Birthday Noah

Today is the first of three of my kids birthdays that fall in September. Noah, my youngest, turns six today!

He’ll have his actual birthday party with friends this weekend, but there is only a half day of school today so he’ll also have lots of friends here after school to celebrate and have cake today too.

First zoo visit of the year

This weekend has been a birthday weekend for Jen and the kids. On Saturday they went to two different parties and yesterday we had another one to attend.

The party was at Roo’s Playland. It had been a few years since we had taken the kids there, but they used to love it. It is a giant indoor playground with all kinds of different things to do. Noah didn’t remember being there in the past at all, but he didn’t want to leave when it was time.

After the party we headed to our local zoo. Everyone else had been there once already this year, but it was last weekend so I had missed out. It was a beautiful day so it was a perfect way to spend a bit of time outside. We managed to arrive right at feeding time which always amazes me. Especially the lions. Gail one of the zoo owners will go right into the lions area and hand feed the them.

She used to get audience participation when it came to feeding a black bear they had at the zoo but, he was old and passed away. They have a younger black bear now but I don’t think they do the same with him. They didn’t today at least.

The zoo started out as a farm with some exotic animals and grew into a really cool zoo. The owners still live onsite and really consider the animals part of their family. Their Facebook page has all kinds of great pictures. I really enjoy the pictures of the lions the most. The old ones where they have some real cool interactions and the new ones documenting the growth of the new pride.

After the zoo we stopped for a quick ice cream snack on the way home too. The proper way to take advantage of one of our first t-shirt weather days this year.