Friday, July 29, 2011

WITL-Thursday Pics

My jam, and yes it is as good as it looks [if you think it looks good that is] Mason mailing a letter. Heading out to Park 'n Play. We woke up to good weather. Price of gas that went up of course, due to the long weekend ahead. I hit the driving range this morning, while the kids were busy. Mason getting dropped off at Ama & Baba's for a sleep over. Inspecting where once a tooth was. Barry, Madelyn and I to BP's for dinner, we got the rare chance to sit outside on the patio. Yard work and weeding. Madelyn got some un-interrupted Wii time.

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

WITL-Wednesday Pics

It was raining again this morning when we woke up. It stopped shortly before noon, which was great because the kids had golf lessons. After our lesson, we went to the library, then made a stop at Timmy Ho's for a bite to eat. Tonight after supper, we had a rather momentous occasion... Baby girl lost her first tooth... [I'm taking it better than I thought I would, there were no tears shed on my part] We taught Mason how to play Solitaire. Tonight, I finished my second batch of Strawberry Rhubarb Jam. It's so yummy!

WITL - Tuesday Pics

We woke up to pouring rain. It rained on and off for most of the day. Needless to say, the kids didn't make it to Park 'n Play, and they were disappointed. It was a great day for hanging out inside. I woke up with an abomination on my mouth... Poor me, so it was a feel sorry for myself kind of day. I made banana bread [yummy]. I made guacamole to put into the freezer [delicious] and I started another batch of Rhubarb Strawberry Jam. I made vanilla steamers for the kids. We read books. The kids played Lego. [I even had a little nap on the couch; shhh, don't tell] Barry took us to Wendy's for dinner [I think he took pity on me too] Later on in the evening, I went for a walk with a neighbor, and the kids went out in the hot tub. I opened a bottle of wine, and we watch the last 2 episodes of Private Practice...[Yes we're THAT far behind] We finally watched the last 2 episodes of Grey's Anatomy last week. Have I mentioned how much I love the PVR?

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Week in the Life has Begun!

I started yesterday. I only took 30 photos... It sometimes takes me a day or two to get into it. And that's fine. This is the 3rd time I've participated in Ali's Week in the Life. Writing down everyday things seems somewhat mundane, and then you look back a few years and realize how big the changes have actually been... Three years ago the kids were 3 and 6. Mason was just starting grade one, and school for the baby still seemed a long way off. This September I have one starting grade 4 and one starting grade 1! Eeks! It is really neat to capture the 'every day'. This is the first time I've done it over the summer holidays, so it changes it up again; with both kids are here all day. Here are a few of yesterday's photos.

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Rhubarb Muffins

Phantom Rhubarb Muffins
[recipe from Best of Bridge series]

Rhubarb Muffins
1/2 cup fat-free sour cream
1/4 cup vegetable oil
1 large egg
1 1/3 cups flour
1 cup diced rhubarb
2/3 cup brown sugar
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt

Brown Sugar Cinnamon Topping
1/4 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup chopped pecans
1/2 tsp cinnamon
2 tsp melted butter

To make muffins: Blend together sour cream, oil and eggs. Set aside. In another bowl, stir remaining ingredients together and combine with sour cream mixture. Mix until just moistened. Fill 12 large muffin cups 2/3 full.

To make topping: Combine all ingredients and spoon onto each muffin. Bake at 350°F for 25 - 30 minutes.

These muffins are delicious. Every time I make them, the kids are excited about the use of rhubarb, but not quite as excited when it comes time to eat them... Oh well, I'm trying to get them involved! I know there are plenty of adults in my life that enjoy a yummy rhubarb muffin, not to worry! On today's agenda, making Strawberry Rhubarb Jam.

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Home Again

Phew... It's already Wednesday. We've been back home for 4 days. We got home around supper on Saturday. Sunday I had reservations for brunch and matinee tickets to see this:

So I kinda felt like I got home and my feet were already running. It's a bit of a shock to spend two weeks on vacation doing absolutely nothing... Seriously. I park myself into a beach chair, and mostly stay put there. There is a lot of snacking, and definitely more drinking that normal. I do manage to do the occasional load of laundry... And those kids need to be fed breakfast, lunch and dinner. Not to mention the snacks they want. Our summer vacations seem to be a lot about the snacks... But the rest of the time, I do nothing. [That's another reason why my legs are aching so badly the past 2 days, I've been doing something, all day long!]

Here are a few pictures of our 2 weeks. The first week was great weather-wise. It wasn't terribly hot, but it was sunny and the sky for the most part was cloudless. I think the rain stayed away until our first Friday there...

1. Madelyn and Baba driving the boat. 2. Family Photo 3. Reading book #2 of the Percy Jackson series [he's totally loving it!] 4. Mason climbed up and jumped off the pole this year! 5. Brother and sister on the beach. 6. Maddy slowly climbing in the ice cold lake... 7. Mad reeling Mason in after a tube. 8. Night time moon over mountain picture, courtesy of Barry. 9. Mason reeling Madelyn in after a tube.

1. Friends arrived! 2. Mason and Madelyn tubing. 3. Playing a new game Baba bought [it was a huge success, we all had a great time playing] 4. Our first Mara Lake turtle! 5. Lake friends, ranging in age from 3 to 13, they all got along wonderfully. 6. Watching a storm on the lake, it was a crazy little storm that had the sand blowing up off the beach. 7. Night time and glow sticks go hand in hand. 8. Our little foursome. 9. Macy and Ama, in the boat.

I touched on the mosquitoes, in my last blog post. But I feel the need to talk about them again. I am not exaggerating, one single bit, when I say that I have NEVER seen mosquitoes like that. They literally swarmed you the moment you stepped out of the cabin. It was awful. The morning we left, they seemed even worse. And with having the cabin door open and shut so much, and the truck doors and hatch open, the cabin was full of them, as was the truck. I would have taken a picture of Mason's back and legs, but I didn't want to be reminded of it for one single moment. He reacts so badly to them, they swell up and it looked like people had put cigarettes out on him. It was nearly unbearable. It made spending time outside, very un-fun. You were constantly smacking and swatting and wiping blood off yourself.

Having said that, now that we're home, I've spent quite a bit of time outside in the garden, weeding and enjoying the sun, and I think I've killed 2 mosquitoes in 4 days... Ahhhhh... It's heaven.

We made a special reading spot in the backyard in our little playhouse. Both kids have spent a lot of time out there the last couple of days, reading. I love that. I love that they both love to read. I'd seen a neat idea for a reading spot in this post here, and considered doing it, then thought why on earth wouldn't I use what I already have? So the 'reading spot' came to be.

After creating their cozy reading spot, and in between nearly a dozen loads of laundry, I pulled up some rhubarb. Couldn't wait to make some muffins, I have a delish recipe, I'll share. They're from the Best of Bridge [of course...] They are very yummy. Can't wait to also make a rhubarb pie, rhubarb crumble, and strawberry rhubarb jam... I got over 8 cups of rhubarb cut up and in the freezer, so the possibilities are endless!

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Two Words...

Rain and mosquitoes. In my entire life, I have NEVER seen mosquitoes like they are right now. Our first week here, they were a bit of a problem in the evening, once the sun went down. But now, and for the past 6 days they have been AWFUL. They literally swarm you the moment you leave the cabin.

It's terribly unpleasant...

And the kids. Those poor little kids who don't retreat to the inside of the cabin like their parents do. I shudder to think how many actual bites my kids have, one of the neighbor kids [Alecia] counted 112 bites... Eeks. So here we are, in the rain, and the mosquitoes actually hang off the screen door... The kids are covered in bites and Off and Deet... That's right... Because what do you do? Everyone keeps talking about how bad it is to get West Nile, which is caused by getting bit by mosquitoes. Then they talk about how dangerous Deet is, and how you don't want to get too much on your skin. And then you chase kids around slapping and smacking and shooing blood sucking little skeeters away, continuously.

And when we complain, they say how they don't want to spray for mosquitoes because it's bad for the environment.... But West Nile and Deet all over our children is okay...

I'm having swarming nightmares... This is not making the holiday terribly enjoyable, I'll be honest. Of course the overcast days and rain, don't help our plight much. Come on Mr. Sun.. We only have a few more days to go!

Friday, July 8, 2011

Mara 2011

Last year I was tickled pink, because while we were away on vacation I was able to blog. I was bummed out by the lack of pictures mind you, but still thrilled with the prospect of keeping things captured.

This year, has been a bit different. I haven't blogged until today... Over a week into our vacation. The connection speed has been giving us difficulty. Too bad, so sad.

We've been really lucky up until yesterday afternoon, weather-wise that is. We were witness to a beautiful outside wedding in Canmore, Alberta on Canada Day. Seriously, it's such a risk to plan something like a wedding outside, so far in advance, and it was a perfect day. After that, we made our way to B.C. The weather was so-so when we arrived, and has just got hotter [thank goodness] In fact, up until yesterday afternoon it was Africa hot. [Something we always like to say, when it's absolutely sweltering] Then suddenly the clouds began to roll in, and within an hour we were battening down the hatches and bracing ourselves for a storm. The storm came, the lake got angry and rough, the skies opened and rain poured down. We even had impressive display of thunder [only a few lightning strikes, which I'm always grateful for]

We woke up this morning, still grey and rainy, but this afternoon, the clouds parted and the sun came out again. The kids shook off sweatshirts and long pants, and once again headed to the beach in bathing suits. They were rewarded with a couple hours of sunshine, and that BC heat, then the clouds came together again. We hope that this runs it's course, and we're on for nice weather for the remainder of the week.

As far as blogging goes, will I have another chance? I don't know. But I'll sure try my darndest!