Thursday, January 14, 2010

Another Look at 2009

Here it is already halfway through January and I'm just getting around to posting this now. Here are a few stories and pictures from 2009 that I never got around to blogging about.

C turned 7 this year. For her birthday, we made a Dive-On-In cake. In the months leading up to her birthday, C had poured over the Kraft website and watched lots of the cooking videos and looked at all the cakes to decide which cake she wanted. The Dive-On-In cake was her favourite. It was fun to decorate and yummy too.

I noticed early in the summer that wasps were getting into the brick wall on the front door side of the garage. There wasn't that many at first, but the activity gradually increased to the point that we knew we had a nest somewhere in the wall, or up in the soffits. Hubby called around for advice and was told that if there was only one entrance, we could block it and starve the wasps. That seemed easy enough, so one night after the wasp activity settled down, we blocked the entrance and figured the problem was solved.

The next day, there were a bunch of angry wasps flying around and pecking up and down the brick wall as they searched for an alternate entrance...we could no longer use our front door for fear of being stung. The wasps found what they were looking for and I watched in horror as I saw them getting in through many places under the soffits and front porch......we knew it was time for an exterminator. The exterminator told us that we should never block an entrance because they are determined critters and will find alternate entrances...even into your own home. Also it's much easier to deal with the problem when there is only one entrance. He laid the poison down and the wasp activity settled down very quickly. After many weeks of wasp activity by the front door, I was in awe of the silence that now greeted us when we opened the front door.

In the summer, hubby and I celebrated our 10th wedding anniversary. We had planned on taking a trip to Europe, but decided to put it off for another year. Instead we spent time at my in-laws trailer, as well as taking some day trips to a couple of Ontario attractions...Marineland and the Toronto zoo...both highlights of the summer for C as she loves animals and rides.

She wanted to go on all the rides at Marineland... starting with the Sky Screamer...the scariest ride in the entire park. I said we'd have to work our way up to that one. She and I rode most of the rides in the park, but never made it on the Sky Screamer as she changed her mind after riding a real roller coaster for the first time.

At the Toronto Zoo, C could barely contain her excitement about seeing so many different animals that she starting screaming, pointing and jumping up and down when we first arrived and she saw wild geese in the parking lot. She wanted to see every animal in the zoo, so we walked the entire 10+ km trail through the park in one day. However, C was really disappointed that she didn't get to see the lion very well. He spent the whole time we were in that section sleeping with his back to us.

In the fall, I started to teach C piano. She had been asking me for a while to teach her and I thought now would be a good time to start. She was keen and enthusiastic at first, but that soon wained as she realized that it was going to be work if she wanted to play like mommy. I'm trying to take it at her pace and use a little bribery, or rather rewards, too. I have purchased some special dollar store items that she can pick from once she obtains enough lesson points. Hopefully one day soon I'll be able to post a little video of her playing.

C's reading ability has skyrocketed over the last couple of months. She loves to read and will read multiple early chapter books (around 75 pages) in one day. We love it...C is a talker so the silence of reading is music to our ears.

We hosted another Irish homestay this year. And like usual, it didn't take long before C became very attached to her and we were soon joking that our Irish girl had a fan club. We didn't realize how attached C was to her until she left for home and we were left with a sobbing child who was inconsolable. It made me wonder if we should be putting C through this all the time. The morning she was to leave for Ireland, C wrote her the cutest letter and pushed it under her door with chocolate. It read...I miss you a lot. I hop you can come to canada again. you give me the best presits. rit to me soon ok. Frum your #1 fan. The best presits being a matching hat, mitts and scarf set in leopard was the perfect gift for C as she loves leopard print.

My sister-in-law works for an organization that was looking for kid voices for their Christmas fundraising radio ads. She asked us if C would be interested in recording her voice for these ads. It was a neat experience for C, who did really well that they want her to come back next year.

Two years ago, my sister and I started a new Christmas tradition for my dad...we fill a stocking for him and leave it out with the kids stockings so that it looks like Santa brought grandpa presents too. This year, my dad wanted to tease the grand kids so he went out and purchased the largest stocking he could find. When he showed his large stocking to the kids and told them that he was going to leave it out for Santa, C's responded with...That doesn't mean you are going to get more stuff.