Friday, April 15, 2011

Frustration Friday!

Ok! I know this is supposed to be another flashback and I truly tried, but three VCRs and five t.v.s later I still can't get the darn thing hooked up! I get sound, but no video. I consider myself to be pretty knowledgeable in electronic set-up department, but perhaps it has been way too long since the last time I touched a VCR! Sadly now I am going to have to use someone's t.v./vcr combo to get the video and turn it digital. So sadly you get a rant of me annoyed with my VCRs. Why do I have three of them if they aren't even being used. Looks like a trip to the electronic recycling center is in my near future.

So instead of a video I found an old picture of me from High School. I am in Grade 9 and this is with one of my best friends Megan. Tragic I know, but I did own a multi-colored leather jacket which I thought was the bomb!



Hopefully Megan doesn't get upset with me for posting such an old picture of us, but I have to say Freshman year was a lot of fun for me. It was my last year of regular school. I finished high school through independent study. Which I don't regret, it allowed me to travel full-time and go to extraordinary places and meet all kinds of people, but I did miss my friends and those regular high school experiences along the way.

My dad always told me that our life experiences whether good or bad turn us into the person we are today. That was certainly true with him and his life and the kind of man he became. I think it is true for me as well. No matter how far I travel or where I go in the world home is always in my heart. I will forever be a country girl from Oklahoma. Living in the big city has changed my view of the world, but not my heart. It is funny because I have conversations with my best friend today about how we are both from the country and definitely have a different view of the world after living in the city, but sometimes those little country quirks come out and it definitely reminds us of home and how sometimes the city folk are even more far out there than the country folk.

They say writing is therapeutic. I think I just proved that. I am no longer frustrated. Although perhaps you are for having suffered through my goings on.

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Family Day in St. Agapit

So here in Ontario we have a holiday in February called Family Day. Now the sad thing is there are a lot of people that actually don't get the day off because it isn't a national holiday. So instead people end up having to find daycare for their children on this day. The point is to make time for your family and do things together. Which is what I think we should do all year long not just around the holidays.

This year we actually skipped half a day of school on the Friday and drove 7 hours to St. Agapit to visit friends. The kids had a blast with their friends and even enjoyed the skating rink they had in their backyard.

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The picture isn't great because I obviously didn't have time to frame it before snapping. My hubby actually fell! It was quite funny. It wasn't even from him trying to avoid running into one of the kids.

Marcus actually had a lot of fun. It was the first time he actually tried to play hockey. He is so afraid of falling on the ice it was good to see him engaged in the gameplay. It helps that Henri is so athletic and is so comfortable on the ice Marcus really opened up to playing.

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The boys played hockey and the girls went to the horses. I never went to the horses because, well I could barely stand in the snow and take pictures!

In the evening everyone went out to skate again this time McKayla enjoyed trying to learn how to skate backwards. Julie figure skates so was giving McKayla pointers on what to do.

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Maddox even took to the ice. The first time and he didn't really know what to do, but hey he stood by himself! Every time he tried to skate it was at full speed and he would fall down. Luckily he is tough and it didn't bother him too much.

Here is a video of the boys playing hockey against hubby and then the girls joining and Maddox stepping on the ice for the first time. I don't know why I didn't get video of the races, but before we went in for dinner the boys raced the girls doing different relays. The girls pretty much smoked the boys. They kept making up new races with new rules to create a way for them to win. Oh and the music you hear is being played from speakers set outside from their computer. "Playing with the boys" Now I have it stuck in my head!

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Luckily the weather was sunny despite the strong winds we spent a fair bit outside. McKayla was able to ride the horses again. She was thrilled! She even had her first lesson as she tagged along with Henri and Julie. Marcus is not so interested in the horses. He is actually allergic to them and has a real rough time trying to concentrate when he is sneezing and rubbing his eyes. Marcus even participated in a swim meet the Saturday morning at the University pool in Quebec City. It had been a while since he stepped into a pool like that,and despite being put with the older group he did well. Made me realize I really have to enroll both of them in swimming in the fall.

Me? Annoyed because this is when my back was completely thrown out and I barely had the strength to do anything. In fact, the drive almost killed me sitting in that same position for so long. We wanted to go into Quebec City and do some things there, but I really don't think I could have made it walking around everywhere. Oh well, inspires me to try to make another trip up there in the summer.

We ate our fair helping of poutine (I know I have a picture of it somewhere. Must be on my hubby's phone) and more cheese than anyone should ever eat.

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The kids made homemade pasta for the first time. Maddox loved it!

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The end result? Yum!

We headed back on Monday morning. Quebec doesn't recognize the holiday so back to work and school for our hosts. Visiting them is definitely always an adventure with so many different things going on you can never have a moment to be bored. It is awesome.

For us our extended family includes all of our great friends who we can enjoy each others company and have a blast with. When you live so far away from your family good friends are the key to happiness. They are also a relief from stress when they bail you out at the last minute and show up to lend a hand.

Monday, April 11, 2011

CNY: Singapore 2011

So I know I am still playing catch-up. Trying to do two posts at a time to mix-up the old and new. Things have been busy on my end. Between spending some days at the school helping out my kid's teacher's to fulfilling my church obligations to keeping my house spotless at all times in case someone happens to call and want to view it. Keeps me pretty busy. Enough with the excuses.

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All the trees were decorated so beautifully.

McKayla and I had an extra day in Singapore when my hubby left on a jet plane with Marcus first. (Maddox was with me too, but he didn't have all the fun McKayla and I did) We spent the afternoon shopping. Yes! because as I posted before shopping is one of the best things to do in Singapore. Next to eating which we did a lot of too!

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In the evening we met up with my sister-in-law in Chinatown which was preparing for the upcoming Chinese New Year celebration. This year we couldn't spend it in Singapore because kids gotta be in school and all. McKayla though, had to go and see all the lights and decorations. It was a must. She wasn't disappointed. Between the lights everywhere and beautiful bright colors she was mesmerized. I was too actually. The night market opened up as we arrived with vendors selling all kinds of great things.

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This one came out blurry. Probably because I was walking and didn't have on my flash. I forgot to take another one because I was too busy looking for great things to buy!

I actually am a little bummed I didn't go for this ring that I saw which was stunning. Some vendors weren't opened yet and I am sure when it is closer to CNY it is better, but there were still some great things to pick up.

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Check out this Hindu temple. I have always thought it was beautiful with all of the colors and figures.

McKayla picked up some gifts for her best friends and received some new shoes from her Gugu (my sister-in-law). We got some great photos. Even McKayla was taking some pics.

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She had so much fun she told me she really needs a camera of her own. Which she has since obtained. I gave her one of my old cameras. I have to admit it was nice to go to Chinatown. We actually never go during Chinese New Year because I really don't like crowds, but because they were still preparing we were able to experience a little of what it must be like.

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This is what shopping for CNY decorations looks like in Singapore.



This is what we get at Wal-mart. One side of a short aisle in the seasonal section. I guess I should be happy to get any sort of resemblance of CNY here. This pretty much sums up the difference between celebrating here and celebrating there. We did have friends over CNY and ate some great food with great company, but you don't quite know what you are missing until you spend it in Asia. Plus, the kids didn't get their red packets this year. Marcus is old enough to know what that means.