Thursday, September 17, 2009


Well, school is in full swing! Leif had no anxiety about going into Grade 1 and the transition has been reasonably seamless. He loves being at school all day, eats his lunch and snack and comes home tired out! The shocking thing about this move into REAL SCHOOL is how much WE miss him at home. The second we walk in the door after dropping him off Laika is lonely for Leif and wondering what to do. She's never had to worry about playing by herself. Even if Leif wasn't playing with her at least he was in the vicinity! She's also learning that Tineke can be a playmate (sort of) instead of just a doll that you pick up and carry from room to room. I sort of had this image that one fewer child at home would mean a little bit more time for me to get things done, and it has turned out to be the opposite.

Leif's going off to school has coincided with Tineke's desire to be exploring the world at every single moment. She is a monkey. She wants to crawl into the toilet, she throws clothes into the bathtub, she empties drawers, she climbs whatever she can reach. You know those soft pads that you place on sharp corners? She pulls them off and throws them away. Doesn't she know I put them there for HER benefit? She pulls knobs right off of the stereo. She squeals with laughter when the kids carry her around, and then screams when she's had enough. She's happy most of the time, and exhausted by evening. Last year I was able to watch the kids in their swimming lessons, this year I will be popping in and out, because Tineke just wants to get into the pool too.

Last week we spent most of their swimming lessons out in the soccer field. Here she is exploring:
Last week another mother I know who is taking her Early Childhood Ed. was observing at Laika's preschool. They had a partially paralyzed man in volunteering and she said that Laika spent a long time playing with him. She said it was clear to her that Laika was aware of his limitations and was very gentle and sweet with him. Of course Laika never mentioned this, but as soon as I knew what to ask about she had a lot to say. As I've mentioned before, I couldn't be more happy with Laika's preschool and the breadth of experiences that she is having there. On a side note: With 80 kids cycling through there each week, there is also a breadth of microbes, and they do an amazing job keeping everything clean and orderly! But I'm trying to be prepared for the onslaught of colds and fevers that are sure to be coming.

I'm so proud of these three little kids, and although I am a little grouchy and exhausted, it makes me happy to realize that the reason this month has been tough is that they miss one another. So even if Tineke sticks her hands into the toilet, and Laika always puts her shoes on the wrong feet, and Leif yells at me when I make him blow his nose, I will try to treasure each day. What else is there?

Monday, September 14, 2009

Summer Album

We had a wonderful summer, and have too many photos to include. We had a terrific time in Red Deer with our cousins, but have no pictures of that! So, if you are a grandpa or auntie with some great cousin pictures please email me some favourites so I can post them! Thank you!

Grandma and Auntie at the Royal Tyrrell Museum
Laika measures up!
Sprawling out at Banff Springs
Enjoying the good life
At the top of Sulphur Mountain

Riding Gondola in Banff

Trip to the farm, and looking capable of biting
Vancouver Aquarium
Paddle boating (pedal boating?) at Bower Ponds
This one enjoyed learning to walk this summer and turning into a goofy toddler
Also loved spending time with Auntie
Swatting flies in a most dramatic way
Seeing Grandma in Creston
Spending time in Beautiful BC!

Cuddling up in random hotels
Spending time with Grandma in Penticton
Goodbye Summer 2009!

Friday, September 4, 2009


On Leif's bday this year I noticed that one of his front teeth was 'bigger' than the other. It wasn't actually bigger, but lower, as the adult tooth had started pushing it out. For the past few weeks now we have been watching and worrying. Though we wiggled it, and he wiggled it, Erik tugged, and a friend tied a string around it 3 times the funny tooth wouldn't budge. And it did become funny. Leif started talking without fully closing his mouth. When he smiled the tooth would stick straight out at almost a 90 degree angle. He earned himself a few politically incorrect, Smoky Mountain type nicknames.

So yesterday at his dental cleaning, I asked the dentist to consider what we should do. She showed me his x-rays. Apparently the two adult teeth are coming down neck and neck and things are only going to get more crazy. She suggested that she give them both the yank. I asked if she would freeze them, and then agreed. I sat in the waiting room nervously trying to corral Tineke and keep Laika busy with coloring books. When Leif finally came out I was expecting a big toothless grin. Instead he emerged with a roll of (slightly pink) gauze poking out between his lips (I forgot about blood and gauze!). He came and crawled into my lap. I thought he was traumatized, but he was just quiet. Laika was firstly worried about why he wasn't talking, and then jealous that he had a loot bag. As we exited the building I realized that my knees were weak. We did it.

When we got him Leif let me take the gauze out. He loves his new look, and his new lisp! He started talking right away. He loves the dentist! He got a new toothbrush! She puts a little vacuum in his mouth called Mr. Thirsty! He wants to be a vampire for Halloween. He wants to shoot water out of his 'squirt hole'. He was anything but traumatized. Laika was so jealous that she spent an hour with a roll of gauze in her mouth.