Friday, 18 April 2014

Lets go to the CoPo and buy some Beare

Everyone was home today. No work or school. At breakfast we started to write a list of what everyone wanted to do. I asked Smallest to add the Co-op (The Beer Store) as we needed salt for the water softener. He wrote "CoPo" and when we laughed he wrote "Beare Store". Bless. We laughed about the Bear going to the CoPo and he drew us a picture of a French Bear called Copo Bear painting a picture. (if you see the bear, you are not allowed to look at him but he would like it if you looked at his painting and put a dollar in his bucket so he can pay for his food).

very clever.


We spent the morning baking, making jelly, gardening and creating more of our path. The boys collected bricks for us and Smallest rode his bike up and down the road until his back hurt! We had to go in when it started raining so we had lunch. In the afternoon we decorated our easter cakes,

......planted seeds, repotted seedlings and then played on the Wii.

Small went off and played with Cog and we tried the Easter cakes we made, played Mancala, table tennis and went back out to the garden where Smallest biked up and down and Huffle and I made some more path and moved our statue Foo Sing from the back to the front (he is very very heavy).

Smallest missing his brother

bulbs poking through the Autumn leaves we laid as a mulch.

I also tried to move a massive stone for our stepping stone path but it was impossible and started to rain again. We all came inside and played, made Pizza and ate it in front of the film Planes but we only got half way through because Smallest was bored and tired. Small came home all muddied up from a bike ride with Cog and another friend.

The boys went to bed. We are hoping tomorrow is a brighter day so we can get out for a walk or a bike ride.


Thursday, 17 April 2014

Does Aunty A live in a sauce bottle?*

Temperatures of 9* and no coats needed. Getting better! Huffle went to work - his sale has now been signed and his timer is ticking down till July when it all goes completely. The boys went off to school, one complaining of tummy ache (not the one that was sick yesterday though). I had breakfast, finished watching Undeniable - I recommend this to anyone who can get ITVPlayer as it's very good.

I went off to the pharmacist today to pick up a prescription and then did a bit of Easter shopping and then went and visited 'Suffolk'. We sat and looked through lovely quilt books and then drove out to a fabric shop we haven't been to before. We signed ourselves up for a course where we buy our backing material (that was difficult seeing as how neither of us are good at making decisions) and each month we get a tutorial on how to do a new technique in quilting. We pay $10 for the first month and if we finish the piece before the next month we get the next tutorial and all the pieces for free. And so on and so on. If we don't finish the piece for whatever reason, you just pay another $10. Sounds good to me. It starts at the end of May. I also signed up for a 1 day course to learn how to Free Motion Sew on my machine which is something I have wanted to do since I watched Kirsty Allsop do it on her crafty program a few years back. That one is mid May. How exciting.

We drove around looking for somewhere to eat, got lost and then drove towards Suffolk's house when we got a call from her school saying one of her boys was injured. We picked him up and took him to the doctors as he had a cut very close to his eye. I left and came home, put my shopping away and had a late lunch.

The boys came home, helped me carry ten bags of top soil from the car to the veg beds and we played outside, playing Swingball, football and playing on the swing. When Huffle came home, he had also bought top soil so we carried that to the beds too. He bought me a Hellebore for Easter (and he is rubbish at surprises so I have it now) and it is lovely.

We all played footbalI and while I finished dinner the boys all played. After dinner there was more football. Can't get enough of this NoSnow weather.


*at the dinner table we were talking about gardening and I showed the boys a lovely photo Aunty A had sent me of a Garden Centre Toilets. Smallest asked "does Aunty A garden?". "Well a little bit" was my reply. "You see she doesn't have a garden, she lives in a flat, an apartment" says Huffle. "Or a condiment" said I. I meant a condominium (that's what they are called here and I didn't know if that was a word he had heard). Condiment!!! Oh yes, Aunty A lives in a Tomato Sauce Bottle.

Very pretty - I think I would like one of these in my bathroom


Wednesday, 16 April 2014

Your pants are going to love me!

There was just a very light dusting of snow left this morning. I don't know if it was left over from yesterday or a new dusting. What I do know is that it was all gone by early evening. Huffle and the boys left for work and school and I went to my exercise class. I use 2.5kilo weights and I felt like they weren't doing anything so changed them for 5kilo ones. I guess I might feel that a bit tomorrow!

Two of the ladies asked me last week if I would help them with their crocheting in return for lunch so after class, we arranged to meet at one of their houses. A quick shower and I arrived armed with wool, hooks and a variety of patterns. I had to teach them practically from scratch and we sat for about 3.5 hours (including a lovely lunch of Courgette Pie and Salad). We are meeting again next week at the other ladies house to see how they got on.

When I got home there was a message on the answer phone from school saying that Smallest had been sick and they wanted to know if he could come home on the bus or not. I decided I wouldn't want to come home on a bus if I was feeling sick so I picked him up. He seemed fine and watched a bit of TV and finished his apple. When Small got home he did his reading and homework and then played on the IPad. Smallest helped me to make dinner then played on the computer.

After dinner Smallest told us why we celebrated Easter (because Aunt Pear asked if they were told in school). "Mary and Joseph had a baby who was Jesus. He went into the desert and didn't eat for forty days. He did something bad, got tied to a cactus and made to kill himself". We like this version better than the one Huffle and I ever heard. We are in no way religious so haven't sat and explained to the kids about the meaning of Easter. I guess Easter for us is a few days off and an Easter Egg Hunt. We will leave the real meaning to those who believe.

The boys watched TV but got into an argument so the TV was turned off and they went off to do their own thing while Huffle and I played Table Tennis and I won 2-1 wahoooooo. I taught Smallest a game of patience and Small two new games of patience. Smallest is definitely not well, though he says he is, he can't stop crying at the silliest of things. Oh dear, I wonder if he will be off school tomorrow.


Tuesday, 15 April 2014

The Queens Strawberries

The forecast for today was snow. When we woke up this morning we had had snow and it was still snowing when we got up. It was also cold.

The flakes were really huge and it settled very quickly. The bus came though and the boys went off to school. Huffle worked from home.

I went off to work. Last week we were told to prepare to work in the garden but there was no way that was going to happen as they had more snow than us (and they are only five minutes drive up the road).

Today I replanted Alpine Strawberries for the Royal York. These were the same variety that were grown for the Queens last visit here and used to garnish her food. (I shall add that to my CV). I also replanted Echiums, Pelargoniums and Broccoli. I got to bring Broccoli and cabbage seedlings home. Wish that veg bed was ready for planting (in other words, GO AWAY SNOW). When we went in for coffee, MrsM hugged me as she knew I would not be happy about more snow. I left just after midday and came home and had lunch with Huffle.

While he carried on working I made a Leek and Potato Soup and a Seedy Bread and a Rhubarb, Apple and Strawberry (not the Queens Strawberries) Crumble at the same time as watching the Crimson Field.

The boys came home, Huffle still worked and homework was done and forms read and signed. We had dinner and then we tried a new tactic for bedtime routine. Instead of reading and being silly at bedtime, we did the reading and silliness an hour before, but it didn't really work because the boys were too silly so we left them and played table tennis. I think the kids are getting excited about Easter already. They have already asked if they can have an Easter Egg Treasure Hunt with clues.


Monday, 14 April 2014

Toil, Soil and Toad in the Hoile

1001st post - no don't worry I'm not going to say that every day that could get tiresome.

A warm day that went to very windy to very rainy and tomorrow we have been forecast 3-5cm of snow. What a crazy silly weather we have here! I skyped Moo and she said they had had a couple of really nice days. Pah! not fair!

Huffle and the boys went off to 'do their thing' and I drove over 33 km away (it seemed like a really long way as the road was completely straight) and met one of my knitting friend's mum. She asked me if I would help out with some gardening. Her exact words were "would you like to help us out getting the garden ready for Spring?". In reality what she meant was clearing a huge patch of very established plants and moving them to another part of the garden which was still grass and needed digging over before the moved plants could be replanted. I liked the lady and we agreed on our ways of gardening. We moved quite a lot of plants and we dug over a biggish new bit, which was like a muddy squelchy bog as the snow has only just gone (just in time for more). The place we are taking the plants from is going to be landscaped in three weeks time and will be practically bulldozed so we are trying to rescue as many things, including lots of bulbs, before it happens.

I came home with a dogwood and was told I could take anything I wanted home with me in the future. It is a very casual arrangement and I can go back whenever I want. It doesn't matter if anyone is there or not as I now know what she wants doing. I worked very hard for two hours with a drink break and we finally stopped due to high winds and the threat of heavy rain.

I drove home and got some shopping on the way, despite the fact I was covered in mud and in my gardening clothes. How very Canadian! I skyped Moo and we chatted whilst I had my lunch then I made Oatmeal Cookies for the boys (Small's request) and prepared Toad in the Hole for dinner, by which time the boys were home.

Small did his homework and Smallest complained of tummy ache and a headache. I know what he means, my head has been hurting for two days but I think its the pressure. We had a storm last night and I think there is another one forecast tonight.

The boys played on gadgets after they set the table for me and we all ate when Huffle came home. I had a long hot soak in the bath to ease my tired back while Huffle painted the kitchen bits up high. the boys went off to Beavers and Cubs. Smallest came back with some seeds he had planted of Beetroot, Cucumber and Sunflowers and Small was doing stories and telling them to the group.

Both boys in bed, a candle is burning to get rid of the yucky paint smell and a pot of tea awaits us with a cookie each. Ahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh.


Sunday, 13 April 2014

One Thousand

Today's blog is the 1,000th post. WOW. Did I really think I would still be writing this after all this time. And every day too. Are you still reading? I know some of you are because I get the usual comments from the same people and for that I thank you. For the rest of you - just to prove you are out there, it would be lovely to hear from you. (Including you lot in Russia!)

Let me introduce you to Robin. He is our resident North American Robin (lets not mistake him for a lovely little fat English Robin) who likes to sit on our porch occasionally looking at his reflection in our window. He seems to visit every day lately.

What did we do on the 1000th day? Huffle and I raked off old leaves from two of the veg beds, dug them over, added dried leaves to the underneath and added composted sheep poo to the tops. We started the seed trays ready for the new seeds, added to the front path in the garden and painted in the basement.

The boys played on the new Swingball (Huffle and I did too), they played on their bikes up and down the street and went off and played with their friends at the back in the forest and round their houses. We lost Small for a few hours when he played in his friends house too. Smallest played on the computer with his new Webkinz that he got yesterday at the party.

We had a few porch moments today because it was so warm and nice. Small, Huffle and I ate our fish finger sandwiches on the porch. Huffle skyped Grandma and Grandad whilst we sat with our tea on the porch.

Early evening we made homemade Pizza and sat and ate it (with a celebratory glass of red wine) whilst watching the film Mrs Doubtfire. Ooooooh Hello Dear.

While Huffle watched The Masters, I read to the boys, putt them to bed and did some sewing. It started thundering, now I know that's not supposed to happen until tomorrow. We have also been forecast 100% chance of snow on Tuesday (NOOOOOO that's my day for working in the garden centre garden! proper gardening instead of being in the greenhouse. BOOOOOO).


Saturday, 12 April 2014

Peat Pots, Poo, Parcel and Pigs

What a beautiful day, we're not scared. Oh sorry, I thought I was on a Bear Hunt for a moment. Still, it was a beautiful day and after breakfast and showers we all went into the garden. Huffle and I moved the sofa from the lounge into the Sun Room and of course we had to tidy, clean and clear it first. I got to sit in there with my coffee enjoying the morning sunshine and playing a game of Mancala with Small while Smallest played on his bike and swing and Huffle watched some football.

The boys played and carried wheelbarrows full of leaves to the bottom of the garden and Huffle and I cleared the leaves and filled the wheelbarrows. Oh boy it felt good to be out 'doing' in the garden. What a shame we couldn't stay out all day. Smallest had a party to go to and Huffle and Small had a shopping list to follow.

After a quick bite to eat, Smallest and I set out to Oshawa for his party. He didn't actually know the girl whose party it was but her Mum is one of my ExPatBrit friends, "Batch". We actually got the time wrong and ended up one hour early. We texted my friend and played on the park and then went in and helped blow up balloons, put fruit out and later give out pancakes. The theme of the party was Pyjamas, Pigs and Pancakes. Her parents were visiting from England and her Dad told the story of The Three Little Pigs with him dressed as the wolf and 'Batch' as the Mummy Pig. He did a good job and entertained the kids. Then they all sat down and had pancakes with maple syrup, lots of sprinkles and chocolate chips. We sang Happy Birthday to the birthday girl and then they played some games including Pass the Parcel which the kids had no idea how to play. It must be a very British game.

Left: Smallest blowing up a balloon. Baby B
Middle: Batch in her Pj's as Mummy Pig
Right: waiting for his pancakes. Grandad Wolf

Plenty of sprinkles on the pancakes. Pink party.

The cake and Pass the Parcel.

We were all party'd out and came home after a piece of Three Pigs cake. Huffle and Small had done very well with their list but had worn themselves out walking from shop to shop in the Mall. They managed to pick up Smallest's birthday present from Grandma and Grandad (a swing ball), vegetable and salad seeds to sew, peat pots to sew into, sheep poo for the veg beds (the horse manure lady had ran out), compost, and a replacement internet box for our TV upstairs as it broke last night. Small had gone off biking with three of his friends from the Hamlet and then Huffle biked to pick him up when he got a phone call saying they had finished playing.

Smallest came away from the party with a gift bag with a soft toy frog which when his code was entered on the computer, became his adopted pet and and he played games and built a home and furnished it.

Huffle caught up with the golf today.