Monthly Archives: October 2010

Thanksgiving In St. Thomas And Tillsonburg

P1060123For Thanksgiving weekend, we travelled to St. Thomas to visit with my parents, my grandmother and my brother and his new family. We were able to be at Steve’s wedding to Katherine which was about a year and half ago now. But, we hadn’t yet been able to meet James, their new baby boy. So, we were very excited to make the trip to catch up with everyone as see James.

We took the kids to an Great Lakes Farms and picked lots of apples. Matthew and Samantha picked so many apples, we still have about a half dozen in the kitchen waiting for someone to eat them. The kids played on some bails of hay while the adults rested and enjoyed some cider.

The next day, we went to Ferguson’s Produce and picked up some pumpkins. We also turned some of Samantha’s old clothes into a little scarecrow and Steve, Matthew and I spent some time lost in a corn maze. When we found our way out, we saw that Samantha had her face painted to look like a pink cat.

Jeff who used to live next door when I grew up in St. Thomas stopped by for dinner that evening. Later, Jeff, Steve and I went out for a few drinks and to catch up. Congratulations on the new sailboat Jeff.

The next day, we went to my parent’s house for Thanksgiving dinner. Katherine and Cynthia had talked about how both of them love sushi so on our way, we got some food at Take Sushi Korean & Japanese restaurant in London. It was very good although I did get a bit more wasabi in one bite than I intended at one point.

Mom had a wonderful Thanksgiving dinner. My uncle George and aunt Barb were there as well as my cousin Darcie who I hadn’t seen since we moved to California. With dinner and visiting done, we said our good-byes and headed back to St. Thomas to stay one more night with Steve, Katherine and James.

It was a wonderful visit and it is so nice to be back so we can make a (relatively) short trip like that and see so many people who are important to us. Special thanks to Steve and Katherine who opened their home to us. Let us know when we can do the same.

Zaida And Granny Visit Our New Home

P1060024A couple of weeks ago, Cynthia’s dad and Nannette came for a visit. It was their first visit since we moved back. On Saturday, they joined us at our house and we gave them the tour. The next morning, we went to their hotel to enjoy the wave pool with them. Matthew went into the deep water and made good use of his goggles. Samantha played in the shallow water, jumping over the waves and just having fun.

Afterwards, we had brunch with them in the hotel before we said our good-byes so they could make the return trip back to Toronto. Since then, we spent a night at their house in Toronto on our way towards the London area to visit my family for Thanksgiving. It is great being back in Canada and close to family and friends.

Kid Activities

P1050890Other than school, Matthew and Samantha are doing some other activities also. Both of them are taking karate. Matthew is in a program for older kids and is working hard to get his first real belt. He is working on his moves and is getting close. Samantha is in “Little Dragons”, something Matthew did before we moved to California and she loves it. She is among the youngest and probably the smallest but she is always listening and trying to do what everyone else is doing.

P1060056Samantha is also taking ballet. She has just started but as with karate, she is having a great time. The pictures are pretty representative. She loves dancing.

At some point soon, we also have to get both of them into some swimming classes. Once we add that one though, I think we will be fully booked up on activities.

School Starts Again

P1050973Matthew is back in school and well into grade two at this point. He is doing well although he isn’t too impressed with homework. Samantha has started nursery school also. She goes three days a week for a few hours in the afternoon. Cynthia has started to leave her there in the care of the teachers at times also which is great for both of them. Samantha was so excited to go to school and we have some pictures from her first day.

Samantha’s Third Birthday

P1050787Samantha had her third birthday a little while ago. We threw a birthday party for her at Samantha’s best friend’s house. We played with their cat who seemed to enjoy sitting in gift bags. We had a Dora piƱata but instead of hitting it, you were supposed to pull on a string to open it up so the goodies could fall out. After breaking a piece of trim off the doorway where we had tied it, Cynthia realized that she overstuffed it and nothing was going to come out. Matthew came to the rescue and used some of his karate moves to break it open. Instead of cake, we had cupcakes laid out to form the number 3. Samantha had a great time and we stayed late visiting with good friends.

But that happened several days before her actual birthday. On her actual birthday, the four of us went out to dinner at East Side Marios. After dinner, they brought ice cream cones with a sparkler in it with several staff singing a birthday wish. Samantha was a bit overwhelmed but loved it. With dinner done, we gathered on our bed where Samantha opened gifts from and cards from family. We have some video of that.

Thanks everyone for your birthday wishes.

Matthew Finishes First Grade

This past June just before we moved back, Matthew finished grade one in California. On his last day, his class was open to parents to attend. Cynthia took a bunch of video that day and I have put it together here. Matthew is well into grade two back in Ottawa and is doing well. His reading and math are his strongest points but his writing is still just as bad (and probably approximates my writing at that age).