Monday, July 30, 2007

Life is good...

For Cooper it doesn't get much better than this. Slouching in the chair eating his dinner, outside, reading an Archie comic. We went camping this weekend at Alouette Lake. I'm still not sure if I am a true camper. I do it because the kids love it. And love it they did, this weekend. It's so much work before you go and just as much when you get home but these are memories the kids will always have. So all the work is worth it, I'm pretty sure ;) Very tired tonight so I'll just add some more camping shots. Taggart started in his first ever swimming lessons today and did great - will add more about that later this week.

Taggart in the dirt with his trucks

A little Harry Potter by the fire

Sleeping in the tentThe tire swingLittle helpers with the dishesHudson chopping wood(everyone wanted lots of turns with the ax)
Dirty little feet


My four little turkeys

Friday, July 20, 2007

Welcome home, Coop!

Today my big boy has returned. Just tucked him into bed after picking him up at camp. I love that they go to camp - the same camp I went to as a kid. I love driving up there and the feeling I get when I'm there. I don't even know how to put it into words but I guess I just have so many great memories of time spent there. Eventhough I can't remember any of my counselor's names nor any of the kids I shared a cabin with, I think it is just such a general memory of happiness and what it's like to be a kid. Today when I saw Cooper at his cabin just hanging out I had this feeling of just wanting to be taken back in time so I could relive that. But really what is so cool is that I can relive it through their eyes and their experiences.

I really missed him this week. Not the first couple of days but today especially, I kept thinking 'I get to see Cooper today.' It's a good feeling to have and one that I never get to experience. It is a conversation Tony and I have had a lot. I need the opportunity to miss the kids - I am with them so much and a day away here or there is really not enough to really miss them. I missed Cooper and it was great drive back together (we left the other kids at home). I realized tonight how grown up he is becoming and how independent he can be, but yet how happy he was to see us and to be at home again. Tonight was a great night with Cooper and I don't want to forget it.

Monday, July 16, 2007

The difference one can make

Last night we drove up to Camp Squeah to drop off Cooper. I was a little worried because he wasn't feeling well the last couple days. He started complaining on Friday that he had 'pulled his jaw'. I wasn't quite sure what that meant and because he does tend to have a flair for drama I didn't think too much of it. But the poor boy woke up on Saturday hardly able to open his mouth. So I took him to the clinic and he has an absess behind his right earlobe. The doctor said probably caused by a staph infection. Still have no idea how he got that but anyways we started him on antibiotics and by yesterday afternoon he had gotten a lot better. So off he went to camp, happy as can be. It's a big deal this year because he gets to stay for 5 nights, which means an overnighter in the woods. He was very excited and we even gave him our old digital camera to record the whole thing. Hopefully it doesn't get dropped in the creek or something and on Friday I may have some photos of the whole experience through Cooper's eyes.
Today was very uneventful - hence the title of this post. Not entirely sure whether it's because I am missing one or is it because of the one I am missing :)

Sunday, July 15, 2007

Oh, my sweet Reagan... is that you are always getting hurt? I never went through anything like this with Cooper or Hudson. You have sprained your ankle, lost a tooth, and now this:

Our trip out to Aldergrove Lake this Friday started with rain and less than desirable temperatures but we were hopeful and optimistic that the sun would come out which it did. Mary and the kids and Nana joined us for lunch and we enjoyed a couple of hours of pure lakeside fun before it came to a screeching halt at the arrival or the ice cream truck. How, you might ask, could the ice cream truck bring an end to fun, but that is where Reagan was eagerly and excitedly running to when she fell and her face met the ashphalt. This picture really doesn't show very well the sad state that she was in. The whole side of her face was scraped right up, both lips were very swollen and bloody, and her right shoulder was scraped off. I didn't see her fall, but soon heard her screaming. I looked and she had already gotten up to come back to me. What a sad sight. I felt so badly for her and immediately got worried that she had possibly knocked out another tooth. We brought her back to the blanket where we tried to calm her down, washed out her mouth and held some ice to her face. Thank-you to Aunty Mary, Olivia and Rochelle who were so helpful to me. So glad I wasn't on my own to deal with that. I should mention that the three boys(Cooper, Hudson, and Jake) continued on to the ice cream truck to purchase thier treats. I guess they figured that Reagan was being well taken care of and why should they miss out. I handed Rochelle a $20 and she went to help them order what they wanted. If I would have been in my right state I would have mentioned that they were only allowed popsicles or something under $2. But when you blindly send money and say buy ice cream that's what they do - so they all came back with the $3.50 tub of ice cream. Good for them - they know when the opportunity arises, you go for it. Hope you enjoyed them boys.

They brought Reagan a popsicle and she tried to eat it but even that didn't help. She just wanted to go home. So we did. Mary called Nana who had already gone home earlier to please have a bath ready for Reagan. Olivia and Rochelle rode in the van with us and the boys went with Mary. The girls read books to Reagan on the ride home and she was smiling and laughing by the time we were home. She had her bath and then got set up on the couch to watch a movie.

She was a real trooper and bounced back pretty quickly. So thankful for older cousins, a great Nana and a great Aunty who made her feel special and well taken care of.

Last night, we went to White Rock for fish-n-chips and some time at the beach(Nana joined us). As were walking along the boardwalk Taggart looked so cute following along on the train tracks. Of course, I pulled out my camera, only to realize I left the battery at home in the charger. So annoying - of course it is on those times that countless great photo ops present themselves. Watching Tag from behind sitting on the grassy hill overlooking a vast expanse of ocean eating his fish-n-chips, all four kids sitting on the steps of the White Mountain Ice Cream shop eating their ice cream cones, leaning over the side of the pier to count the starfish on the rocks below. I'll just have to try and store those images in my head.

Wednesday, July 11, 2007

No water park today

I woke up to find Taggart curled up beside me this morning, which is a common occurence. But today he was with hot with fever. So that cancelled our plans of going to the water park. Hopefully he feels better tomorrow and we can go then. It's so hot already this morning that I can't imagine I will be very productive with much of anything. Try and get a load of laundry in maybe. Here's some photos of some slip-n-slide fun we had on the weekend with our cousins - thanks guys for showing us how it's done.


There seems to be a little special bond between these two that is fun to watch. Must be something about being the oldest. Thanks for another fun day guys.

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Wow, It's hot...

and even hotter tomorrow they say. Was I complaining only a month ago that the weather was too cold? I think it reached 35 today so we kept pretty holed up in the house with everything shut tight. After dinner Tony and Reagan left for soccer and the boys and I headed outside for a dip in the pool. I don't very often get in the little kiddie pool but today's temperature demanded it. I felt bad for Reagan as they headed out to play soccer in the heat. Somebody thought it would be a good idea to make the uniforms black - so I'm sure she was roasting before she even hit the field. Proud of her though, she doesn't complain and is seeming to have a good time. Love how her tongue is sticking out in real concentration heading for the net.

Tomorrow we are heading to the water park and then maybe somewhere with air conditioning.

Friday, July 6, 2007

Warning! Long post.

So, where do I start. Two weeks has gone by since our computer died. We were hoping to just take it in for a tune-up and squeeze a little more life out of it but no such luck. I took it in to the computer shop where(to my slight embarrassment)the guy opened the side panel to reveal the inner workings and about a one-inch layer of dust covering all the little wires and pins and things. This might be why it died, he says. Are you supposed to dust in there? I ask innocently. Probably a good idea every couple of weeks, he answers. Every two weeks!! I'm lucky if my furniture gets dusted every two weeks, never mind the inside of the computer. Anyways, the new computer is up and running and completely dust free, at least for a couple of weeks.

Two weeks ago was Reagan's birthday and it seems like a lot has happened since then. The day after her birthday we all{all except for Hudson - he had to go to school :(} went on a field trip to Harrison Hot Springs with Cooper's class. The agenda was to go through and view all the sandcastles on display for the sand sculpture competition and then spend the rest of the day on the beach. We left Abbotsford at 9am with bright sunny skies - as we neared our destination the skies got darker and darker and then the rain hit. By the time we arrived we were in downpour mode with wind so hard it was turning the few umbrellas the "lucky"ones had inside out. You could see the panic on the teachers' faces as the buses pulled away and there we all stood - looking very pitiful, I'm sure, all huddled under the too-small shelter. We waited and waited while the teachers conferred and then...good news! The hot pool across the street has agreed to let 70 eight and nine year olds into the pool. Cheers go up and the mood shifts from sad and freezing to happy and freezing - but soon to be warm. Of course, I checked the weather before we left and I said to Cooper, You won't need your swim shorts - it will be way too cold to swim. Of course, that was before I knew he would be swimming in a heated pool rather than a lake. Mom, I don't have my swim shorts, he says in a panic. I run across the street to a little tourist souvenir shop and to my relief they have boys swim shorts and for only 10.99. I also remember that I have bags of too-small clothes in the back of the van waiting to be passed on. So I rummage through those and find suits for Reagan and Tag - a little small but they worked. Everyone was happy - everyone that is except for the dozen or so seniors that thought they were going for a nice relaxing soak in the hot pool on this cold and rainy Friday morning. They were in for a bit of a shock as 70+ third graders came stampeding into the pool. Needless to say, they didn't stay.

The following week was the last week of school for the boys - which meant bringing home lots of unused school supplies(I knew they wouldn't need 8 glue sticks) and of course Sports Day. Tony always takes the day off and we take turns cheering the boys on in their events. They were both on the yellow team this year so that made it easier. Yellow team won first place, by the way, led to victory by the Symonds' boys of course :)

We kicked of the start of summer and celebrated Canada Day at the same time with our second annual neighborhood picnic in ours and Stephanie's backyards. The turnout was smaller than last year but it was a really great night. The food was fantastic, the kids had a blast and not one person was left dry after the massive water balloon fight. Not even the couple that had moved in two days prior was exempt - a very fun welcome to the neighborhood. Steph and I thought that the 600+ water balloons we spent hours filling up would last a little longer than they did though. Next year, Tony suggested that on the invites we state that no one enters unless they arrive with no less than 50 filled balloons. Not a bad idea.

So, we are in full blown summer mode around here. The pool is full, the slip and slide is out and the washer and dryer is going non-stop with towels and swim suits. The weather is finally co-operating. I really love this time of year - it's hectic and chaotic with all the kids around. But nothing beats watching them all run around barefoot, shirtless(apart from Reagan-who thinks that's unfair, by the way) and with popsicle juice staining their bellies. Being a kid in summer vacation has got to be one of the best things.

Today we packed up and went to Aldergrove Lake. They had a great time and that lake is so perfect for their ages - small and contained. I am really noticing this year how things are starting to get easier. Last year I never would have packed them all up on my own to go somewhere for the day, but this year I think I will try to go there often. Really trying to make the most of the summer - you think you have so much time but it will go fast. No big holidays planned so we will try to make lots of little memories.

Speaking of little memories, I will end this horrendously long post with a shot of Reagan with her hula hoop. She seems to move from task to task. Monkey bars, then cartwheels, right now the hula hoop. She works and works at something until she can do it and then moves on to the next thing to master. I love her determination - not to mention she gets pretty good at what she wants to do. I think she kept the hoop going on her little wiggly hips for at least a full minute today. Way to go, Reagan!

I'm Back

Thanks to Mary for informing those of you reading this from time to time that I have been 'computerless' for a while now. We are now back up and running and I am hoping to post an entry later today to update on the past couple of weeks. Talk to you all later.