Thursday, July 30, 2009

I could do this more often

Getting a hang of this vacation thing. Kids actually slept in this morning (could be something to do with the heat for the past few days, plus play play play). Decided that another relaxing day of not doing much would be good again.

Because of the late start, we just hung out in the morning and didn’t head down to the beach until 11ish. We planned to meet the Knibbs and did lunch on the beach today. Sand and all. Another good couple of sunshine, surf and fun times. Boggy boarding is a huge hit with the kids and kills a few hours.

I had this grand plan to sneak off for a couple hours this afternoon on my own. But this kids wanted to come with me, and since this is about them, the three of us took off for a bit. I kept looking for the cute shops that Jen and I found last year, only to realize after about ten minutes driving that we were in Parksville and last year we were in Quallicum. Oh well. We did pick up a scrapbooking mag and some things for the kids, as well as some fresh fruit. Gotta love fresh fruit.

We decided to throw another round of golf in before dinner. Much cooler (although still silly hot) this time round.

This evening our friend Eric arrived for the last two nights. After some burgers we headed back to the beach for another round of fun in the water. Busy day tomorrow, last full day. Looking forward to it all.

Favourite parts of the day

Braydon: boogy boarding, playing with Brad, golfing and night swimming
Kaylee: booogy boarding, staying up late, swimming with Rachel and golfing
Chris: beer and friend coming to visit, got through a lot of his book today
Kirsten: lunch with friends and having a fun vacation

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Already Wednesday, and hottest temps yet

Bracing ourselves for a record breaking heat day, we decided the best thing to do, was pretty much nothing. Each afternoon we attempt a something, and each afternoon, we fail. So today, we decided a lay low day was probably in order. The heat was starting to make people cranky, so why fight it.

Again we headed down to the beach for some swimming and seeking out cool things that live in the water. Then suddenly KJ decided she didn’t like hermit crabs. Hmmm, the beach is filled with thousands of them. So the melt down started, and the grump continued all morning long. You can’t blame a little girl, I mean it was hitting 35c and the breeze didn’t seem to be working.

We broke the spell a little bit by flying some kites. But since the wind wasn’t really reliable, we lost interest and decided to head back for some lunch. Knowing that Brad and Braydon really wanted to hang out, KJ and Chris hung back for some quiet time (she got to watch Nemo in hopes that it would turn to a nap, which of course it didn’t) and Braydon and I took off.

We checked out the Knibbs campside, and then Jen and Brad came with us on our errands. We needed to get salmon for dinner tonight, and were sent to a local fish market. Jen and I though we were getting the deal of the century when it was $6.95 a side of coho (that looked like it was caught an hour ago). We even double checked, cuz being west coast girls, we know that is stupid cheap. Um, it’s $6.96 a pound, so it was $30. Cooking it in a hour and looking forward to it.

The Knibbs are coming for dinner, but unfortunately, the Darwin’s have a sick little boy so they aren’t joining us tonight.
Who knows what is in store for tomorrow. I did get a good laugh today when Chris looked in the back of the car and saw a 12x12 brown paper bag. All he said was “guess you found the LSS hugh?”. Only a scrapbookers husband knows what goes in a 12x12 brown paper bag.

And onto today’s favourites..

Braydon: walking out as far aw we can, looking at the big crabs and playing with Brad
Kaylee: going boogy boarding, watching Nemo, watching the crab guy come in and seeing the dogs swim, walking out as far as we can, playing with Brad, Rachel, Jen and Dan
Chris; getting some time on his own, and drinking beer
Kirsten; walking out as far as we can in the water with the kids

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Seriously, I know that I have already mentioned the heat, but it’s something else. Someone told me today that there has been three times since the 1800’s that the heat like this has lasted. Um…that is a long time.

The water and ocean is a god send. Because of it being so shallow, it’s not cold cold like it usually is. It’s actually just the perfect temp, and the only thing keeping us sane. With the morning breeze, it’s such a great outing and a great time killer.

This afternoon wet finally met up with the Knibbs and headed out to Coombs market. It’s an ecliptic grouping of stores, very crafts, some junk, but a lot of cool little finds. Last year Chris bought me a beautiful ring from one of the places.

But the heat was just too much. Regardless of us starting the time off with a slurpee in hopes that it would cool the kids, it was pretty much in vain. The heat (37c) was just too much. While the adults were challenged by it, the six year olds, the four year old and the two year old literally melted. I am hoping that we get a chance to go back, as I really love looking at those type of stores. We plan on going Friday, maybe in the morning if it’s cooler.

On our way home, we decided that instead of getting them to wait in the car while I bought MORE water and MORE drinks, I would drop them off and run back out. Little ol’ me was happy happy to this, as I had found the LSS in Parksville. Located in a cute little house, with LOTS of cute stuff. I’m waiting till DH has a couple cold ones before I mention my spree. I only bought a couple things, and basically plan on making a special album about this hot and fun vacation.

But tonight was the best night yet. After dinner we went to a night market (wish I got a couple things from there) but when we got home – we decided to head back to the water. It was their bed time, but it was just too hot. So we went for a quick dip and it was perfect. The water cooled us and with the light, I got some awesome shots of the kids and Chris, and the sun.

As always, we end the day with reviewing our favourite part of the day. I’m really enjoying it. Although Kaylee just says whatever her big brother says, it’s a great way to review our day and think back about what we did. And while I know computers aren’t the best way to escape on a vacation, I wouldn’t trade writing this journal each night. It’s only Tuesday, but so far, I’m really enjoying this time together.

Braydon: Finding the bunny rabbit. Going for a night swim. Seeing the goats on the roof and getting the ball and seeing Brad and playing with my new friends
Kaylee: Going for the night swim, seeing the crabs in water and on the sand, seeing Brad, Rachel, Jen and Dan, goats on the roof and playing with new friends.
Chris: The night swim and the AC in the car
Kirsten: Finding some goodies at the LSS, going for the night swim and capturing my favourite photos of the week (so far)

Monday, July 27, 2009

Early risers

Another early start to the day, KJ was up at 7am. Hello? Have my children not heard of sleeping in????

I finally gave up and got up with the kids and tidyed up while they watched some TV. The only plan of the day was going to the beach. We did a good shift down there, thank goodness for the wind. It kept it beautiful and enjoyable on this hot day. Darren and Alexa were down there, and we decided to have a sand building castle. If I won, Alexa would draw me a picture. If she won, I bought the kids an ice cream cone. Guess who won??
In the afternoon we headed to this massive playground just up the road. It’s huge and has every apparatus a kid could imagine. Except for the lack of shade, it was fantastic.

Later afternoon we headed back down to the beach and went on a shell and sand dollar hunt. Not a lot of dollars, but some beautiful shells. One of my favorite things was when Braydon said “you can scrap that shell mom”. Love that child.

Cooking hot dogs. Boiling them seems a little wrong, but we still have another day before we officially have a BBQ. But we plan on celebrating with a salmon dinner.

Braydon: Seeing the deer, seeing the shrimp, crabs, building sand castles, finding beautiful shells and sand dollars
Kaylee: Building sandcastles, seeing the deer, seeing the shrimp and crabs, going to the big playground, and climbing the play animals and spinning around in the tire, finding shells and sand dollars
Chris: Spending time with the family
Kirsten: Sitting down at the end of each day and going through their favorite parts of the day

Saturday, July 25, 2009

Sunday Sunday

Hot Hot Sunday.

Phew, it is HOT. I know I shouldn’t complain, cuz every other year our vacation has had rain and cold weather. I have no idea how hot it got today, but I am pretty sure while we were mini golfing, it was somewhere near what it would feel like out in the dessert.

The day started early. Too early really. Those kids were up at 6:30. Ya, so not when I planned on getting up. But then we just threw them in front of the TV and crawled back into bed till a little later.

Breakfast was first full day keener, I make blueberry pancakes We then headed to the beach for a few hours of fun. The wind was perfect keeping it just right. Lunch back at the condo and then went to order our BBQ for the rest of the week, only to be told that we can’t have one till Tuesday. While we did try to pre-order, they said not to bother. Ya right. Oh well, no big deal.

We went mini golfing this afternoon. Honestly it was just too hot, but we still had fun. On the last hole, if you get a hole in one – you win a free round. Chris won it so I guess we are going back on more time. Braydon couldn’t be happier.

Tried to have some quiet time this afternoon, which only sorta worked. Kaylee really needed a nap, but that didn’t happen. Now you may think that with that really early morning and no nap, hot weather and going all day she and Braydon would be sound asleep right now (it’s 9pm), but that isn’t happening any time soon.

After dinner we went down to the beach to find some crabs and sand dollars and ended up going to our friends for a drink. So the calming bath didn’t happen and they are still bouncing off the walls. Oh well.

I’m heading for a shower to cool off. Hopefully the kids will sleep in tomorrow morning and we have another fun day at the beach.

Brayon: Mini golfing, playing with his new friend Liam, boggie boarding, playing with Alexa, finding sand dollars, crab hunting
Kaylee: Playing with Alexa, building sand castles, mini golfing, sand dollars and crab hunting
Chris: Going for a walk on the beach, getting a hole in one at mini golf
Kirsten: watching the kids play in the water and having so much fun. Listening to Chris tell the kids he had a wonderful day.

The first day of the vacation.....

The sleep went as well as the toilet bit. The cat kept us both up. But at least the day got going early. We threw the last of the stuff into Ruby, fed the kids breakfast and decided to leave a bit earlier than we planned. I mean, if we are going to wait, we might as well wait by the ferry instead of our living room.

Chris is driving. I’m moving his car into the carpot. He gets out of the car after turning it on, and it won’t come out of park. I try. It won’t come out of park. Maybe this vacation isn’t going to happen.

One more try, and for whatever reason, it moves into reverse and we are on our way. We get to Horseshoe Bay at 8:20. They tell us the next ferry is 10:05 (which we were hoping to catch). We grabbed a coffee, the kids played at the park, and we went back to wait in line.

We were second to last to board the 10:05. Phew. Luck was on our side.

Beautiful ride over. The last two years, the ferry ride was so cold that we went out to see what the wind was like, and immediately came back in. This year, the weather was perfect, and the kids tried to fly like birds. It doesn’t matter how many times I travel through my province – each and every time I am stunned by the natural beauty that surrounds me.

We got over in plenty of time. Maybe a little too much maybe. Tired kids and we couldn’t check in till 4. We went to Quallicum and checked out the market, where Braydon got a motorcycle hat. We then chilled out at Quallicum beach, got ourselves something cold to drink and waited out the time.

Finally we checked in, I got some groceries and Chris and the kids checked out the lay of the land. Tonight we kept dinner simple, grilled cheese for the kids, BLT and salad for us. So far we have played football, horseshoes and Frisbee.

I’m about to read bed time stories, and then it’s my fav part of a vacation with my husband. Some quiet time just hanging out on the patio.

A nightly feature I plan on asking the kids is what their favourite part of the day is. It was a travel day, with a lot of hurry up and wait. The stuck through it, and when I asked what they liked best, they both had answers immediately.

Bradyon: Getting the motorcycle hat. It’s pretty cool. I also really liked seeing the rabit.
Kaylee: Loved seeing the new “house” and seeing the rabbit.
Chris: Beer tastes better on vacation
Kirsten: Finally getting away on vacation.

Friday, July 24, 2009

The night before vacation


The night before…

Should this vacation even happen? I mean, the death of the van was one thing. We knew that she didn’t have a long life left, but we thought for sure it would do us one more trip. But that can to a hault. Literally. So with Ruby in place – what could go wrong, right? Well, I think Murphy may have decided to come along on vacation this year.

For once, everything was packed and prepped. No doing laundry at the last minute. I mean it was all packed before 8pm. Nice.

So I was cleaning up things around the house and noticed that there was some water on the bathroom floor. Thinking it was just drips because I just cleaned it, I was hopefull. Nope. Then actually wishing it was bad aim from Chris or Braydon, I was disappointed that it wasn’t.

The toilet was leaking. Bad timing. At least, it wasn’t while we were away. So we turned off the water and went to bed. Maybe tomorrow will be better.

Thursday, July 23, 2009

The best of summer still to come

Ahhh, I don't want to jinx it - but this summer vacation looks dry. This is our third year going to Vancouver Island for our vacation. The past two were rainy, and chilly.

Next week's forecast, HOT!!! Yipee!!

Here's to summer!

Monday, July 20, 2009

More stuff to love

Oooo, I love it when a company designs things that I love and know I can use right away. Especially important is the rockin' boy paper that I can use for my six year old. I find some of the boy stuff out there is just too babyish, but this happens to be oh so him. And the girl stuff, well we know how well Kaylee looks with flowers and pink stuff!

Sunday, July 19, 2009

Sunday Sunday

The day has been packed of different things. Nothing special, just a busy day. Cleaning, laundry (lots of laundry), basically trying to prep for vacation next week (can anyone say excited!!).

Kaylee has swimming lessons this morning, and as always, she enjoyed them. One of Braydon's friends is in the class, so it was nice that she knew someone. I took the dog for a short walk, and after swimming got some groceries. Chris has been doing most of the shopping, and apparently he is way better at it. He always spends less, I have no idea how.

Anyhow - laundry was the main theme today. Trying to figure out who has what, and if we need anything before we head out on Saturday am. We will be fully packed Friday night, so Sat we can just get up, eat breakfast and head out on the ferry.

We did manage some time at the playground. Chris and Braydon threw the ball, and Kaylee enjoyed the swings (and being goofy). They both ran around and burned off what seems to be the never ending amount of energy. I wish I had some of that. Even just a little bit.

Dirt would the other theme today. Both kids are in the bath right now attempting to get rid of some of that dirt, but I think it may stick like the energy they have.

Date Night

Every year on date night, I force Chris to take a photo. This years is a bit washed out with the sun (and some wrinkles seemed to have happened somehow) but still shows us together and happy.

We went to our favorite place to eat on special occasions. With the kids at my parents for the night and the weather in our favor - we headed out to the Boathouse in Horseshoe Bay (Suzanne, I promise to take you there next time!). What a perfect night it was. Our friends Kevan and Kelly joined us for a drink, and while they would have loved to stay - they had other plans but promised another night for sure.

Chris and I shared the mussels as the appetizer. MMMm, maybe the best I have ever had. Smoked with some apple cedar, they were cooked to perfection. My main was the same halibut I had last year. I had been dreaming of it for a year. Worth the wait. Chris had the salmon / halibut combo and he loved it too.

While dessert was not needed, it sure was good!! Chris had the apple / cranberry crisp and I had the molten chocolate brownie. While he swore his was better, I know that chocolate ALWAYS trumps other desserts.

When we got home we sat out on the deck and enjoyed the peacefulness of it all. And the next morning, no kids to wake us. Nice.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

8 Years Later....

Hard to believe that Chris and I have been married for 8 years already. I'm lucky to have him as my best friend. I'm lucky to have my family just like I dreamed it would be. Full of love and laughter. I'm lucky.

Monday, July 13, 2009

Meet Ruby

Here she is. A 2009 Dodge Journey, sparkling in red. Actually to be specific, it's Inferno Red Crystal Pearl. And her official name shall be Ruby Bruce Heal. Ruby Bruce has a ring too it doesn't it?

The mini van era for me is done. We needed something with space still, but something cool. This has seating for 7 (although the two in the back shouldn't be too tall), a 6 disk CD changer (the van had cassette, so this is big!) extra cargo in the second row, and did I mention it's pretty colour?

Happy Me!!!

Saturday, July 4, 2009

Well, I finally figured out how to add a slide I have to figure it out how to get it to the side and not as a main post. Little baby steps. :)

River Dog

There are two things in this world that make my nine year old dog act like a nine month old puppy. One is snow. The other is being able to lie down in the river on a hot day.

This morning, as Chris headed out for some golf, the kids, Takaya and I headed down to the river. She chased the ball, swam in the river and enjoyed herself while she was able to cool down. It's been hot this week, and I'm sure her fur coat makes it even hotter for her.

This afternoon she will smell. Badly I am sure. It's okay, on Tuesday she'll go to the groomer. Tomorrow she will probably be sore. She forgot she was old today, and it was good to see.

Thursday, July 2, 2009

Happy Birthday Chris

My beloved husband of almost 8 years turned all of 36 today. I married younger :)

While he's still off work, he's having a good summer with Braydon. He's such an amazing father to both kids. I love how they have balanced him in a way that alone, I never could have. Chris is my rock. He brings reality to my dreams, and my day dreams. He makes sure the important stuff gets done so I can do fun things too. And while I'm the half glass full type, he's half empty - but together it's a full glass, so it's all good.

I wish you the happiest year yet Chris. You deserve it. I love you.

Happy Canada Day!!

Oh Canada! The sun was shining and there was only ONE thing on my kids minds....the parade. So we, along with what seemed the rest of North Vancouver, headed down to watch this local event and enjoyed ourselves again.

Of course, there were some people in the crowds that didn't get the concept of not moving in on territory already claimed, we still found a small chunk of land that allowed us to sit through most of the one and a half hours! Yes, one and a half hours! It's not like we are seeing grand floats, but we have fun with some marching bands, the amazing motorcycle demo by the VPD, our boys in red, RCMP and what is a Canadian parade without bag pipes??

Afterwards the Rantz's came for a BBQ and the kids had fun in the sprinkler. We sat out back, enjoyed some burgers, cold beverages and potato salad. A good Canada Day eh!