Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Another Patience Funny

The other day Patience was doing something obnoxious...I can't even remember what it was but I remember being really annoyed.
I told her, "Patience! Behave!"
She quickly improved her behavior and a few minutes later asked me:

Mommy, am I being have?

Monday, July 28, 2008

Company's coming!

On Saturday evening I have the pleasure of picking up my good, good friend Heather and her lovely daughter Haley from the airport! They're coming up for a week-long visit and I'm so excited!

They're from Modesto, California, which is a really hot and dry city built in the middle of the desert, so I'm a little concerned that they might freeze up here (bring layers!). We're planning on heading to Victoria for a day, but other than that we'll be hanging out here at home. Heather and I are really kindred souls, so if I say, "Heather, what do you say we sit around and crochet plastic bags?" she'd say, "that sounds great!"

Heather and I went to highschool together in California, lost touch for many years, but then reconnected via the internet! We also managed to have twin sons who were separated at birth. Okay, not really, but they are so much alike that they really could have been! They have yet to meet, but we're going to try really hard to introduce them because they could seriously be BFFLs like their mothers : )

Sunday, July 27, 2008

Going Bye-Bye

On Thursday afternoon we decided that we'd leave earlier than planned and try for the 5:45 ferry. This would put us at our hotel before midnight, which sounded like a great idea. So in a flurry and bustle, we headed out of the house and headed to Tsawwassen. We arrived at 5:30. We were three cars away from getting on that ferry! So we had a nice wait at the ferry terminal waiting for the 8:15 ferry, but the weather was beautiful and we treated ourselves to a yummy dinner. I had a crepe filled with smoked salmon, cream cheese, red onions, and capers and Don had Chinese food.

After eating we headed down to the breakwater and synced our calendars...something we rarely have the opportunity to do. Here's Don on the breakwater.

When we finally got on the ferry, we had front-row seats on the upper deck, and we were headed right into the sunset. We ended up staying in the car almost the entire time, watching the scenery and visiting with one of the deck hands.

When we arrived at Nanaimo (10:45) we had another 90 minute drive to get to our hotel in Courtenay. Luckily, there was little traffic and no police in sight so Don was able to make it in 1 hour and we were at our hotel by midnight.

We stayed at the Best Western (nice!) and their beds are very comfortable.

Arriving at Quadra

Friday morning Don and I went to get a quick bite to eat and some coffee before heading over to Quadra. Quadra is in Comox, just about a 10 minute drive from our hotel in Courtenay. The whole area is beautiful, and we had gorgeous weather on Friday.

Here are some shots of Quadra as you approach it. It's located on Goose Spit and the surrounding area is a very busy beach. The staff cadets frequently get "after-work leave" in the evenings and they'll head down to the beach and skip rocks or enjoy a bonfire.

Boatshed and Nathan's Boat

When we arrived at Quadra, we were a little early for the graduation parade, so we decided to go visit Nathan at the boatshed. All of the boatshed workers were in a dark room watching a Will Farrell movie on Nathan's portable DVD player! Don poked his head in and said in a gruff voice, "Murphy!" to which Nathan automatically replied, "Yes, sir!" Then he looked up and saw it was Don and his smile lit up the dark room. He introduced us to some of his fellow "sheddies" and then took us on a tour of his boat. He made sure we noticed how much cleaner his boat was than all the others.

The boatshed pier.

Quadra has tons of boats, all different kinds.

Nathan making sure we had life vests on before going down to the boats.

Nathan and I on the pier. Notice how dark he's gotten in 4 short weeks?

Nathan on his (very clean) boat.

Graduation Parade

The graduation parade was very impressive. I've only ever seen cadet parades at the boys' home corps, so this parade was much larger than I'm used to. Also, the band was very good and all of the cadets sang Heart of Oak which was very moving.
The parade started a little past 10 a.m. so it wasn't too warm out, but there were still about 15 cadets or so who either fainted or who needed to leave the parade square because they felt faint.

We were fortunate to have seats right in front of Sean's division. Can you see him? He's second from the left (not counting the DO saluting). I was shocked to see him because he was so tan. He has gotten tan every summer from swimming, but this summer when he got tan I didn't see him everyday so it was a bit shocking.

He's also in much better shape physically. His clothes are looser, but he's gained 5 pounds...must be muscle!

Here is his entire division along with his DPO (divisional petty officer) Angela Radmore from 169 Columbia.

After doing a lot of ceremonial stuff inside the parade square, each division marched around Quadra, singing Heart of Oak.

Quadra Tour

After mess Sean had about an hour, so the boys took us on a little tour of Quadra. It was very impressive and it's so nice to have some first-hand experience so that I can picture what Sean is doing the rest of his summers until he is 19!

A sign that Nathan has told me about for the past two years.

The Confidence Course (obstacle course to civilians).

Some funny decorations.

The boys and I on our tour.

The flags flying on the parade square.

Family (mostly) Photos at Quadra

We took these photos after mess on Friday afternoon. These miscellaneous people were all part of Sean's division.

Arriving Horseshoe Bay (Vancouver)

I've never been to this ferry port before but we ended up taking this ferry home because it had a better schedule. We were home by 8:00 p.m. and able to see two very happy girls and a very relieved Dylan!

Miscellaneous Comox Photos

We saw a mommy deer with twins on someone's front lawn in Comox. I thought they must be lawn ornaments until they started moving around.

Cribbage al Fresco

On our way home yesterday afternoon, we had about a 2-hour wait for the ferry from Departure Bay to Horseshoe Bay. Much to our delight, we found that the ferry terminal had seating right on the water...the building had glass doors that they opened in nice weather! So Don and I sat and played a couple of games of cribbage which I won and that made the time go by much faster for me anyways.

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Rubbing it in...

Nathan called yesterday to lets us know he was in the middle of the straight (not the sea, but the water in between Vancouver Island and the mainland), the weather was beautiful, he had taken his shirt off, just relaxing in his boat...about to go for a swim as they had a lifeguard along...on his way to an island for another OverNightSail. He told me he felt guilty that he was getting paid for this and that he thought he should be paying the DND for such a wonderful summer.

And if that wasn't enough, he called us last night to let us know they were now on the island, relaxing on the beach, waiting for the steaks to be barbequed. Rub it in, Nathan, rub it in...

So, in case you were starting to feel bad for Nathan working hard all summer away from home and family, rest assured he is fine...

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

The things kids say...

Tonight while Dylan taught a trumpet lesson, Garrett's mother was jumping with Patience on the trampoline (yes, she's a much funner mother than I am).

Patience was showing how she can do bum drop after bum drop after bum drop...forever. Garrett's mother said, "Wow, how do you do that?

Patience's answer?

"Well, it helps if you're not old."

My Plarn Bag

Here is my finished bag. It's smaller than it should be, probably because I used a smaller crochet hook than the pattern called for.

Jordyn taking her turn with the "purse."

And you can see it also doubles quite nicely as a Cat in the Hat hat!

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

I may need to be admitted...

Ever since I heard of this on the internet, I've been intrigued. Today I started making this. And next I'm going to make this. Have I gone over the edge?

P.S. Locals, please save your plastic bags for me. Thanks!

Monday, July 21, 2008

After-Bath Photo Shoot

The girls and I took these pictures after their bathtime tonight. Taking pictures with my digital camera is one of their new favorite activities.

Patience and Mom (taken by Jordyn!)

Jordyn and Mom (Patience is really quite a good photographer!

My beautiful girls.

Friday, July 18, 2008

Definitely not deprived...

We might not have much, but we have Edaleen vanilla ice cream with homemade cherry sauce. It really doesn't get much better than this!

When we were eating this, Don and I both thought at the same exact moment that with a tad bit of chocolate sauce, this dessert would taste a lot like Cherry Garcia ice cream. Guess what I'll be making tomorrow?

You can MAKE that?!

When Caroline Ingalls was a little girl, her mother Charlotte was amazed to learn that she could actually buy beans in a can. Imagine being able to buy something that she had previously only ever made in her kitchen...

Nowadays we're in the opposite mindset. We buy most of what we need and when we find that we can actually make something that we've only ever purchased it's like a big surprise! Usually we stick to the good ol' method of buying our food, cleaning products, and the like, but most of those things could be made...saving not only money, but also packaging and fuel.

Today I'm making potato salad to go with some yummy barbequed steaks and green beans from the garden. But I'm out of mayonnaise. So I hopped on the internet and found gazillions of recipes for mayonnaise. It's so easy to make. You only need a blender, some measuring tools, and some very basic ingredients. In 5 minutes, I went from being out of mayonnaise to having 2 weeks' worth. No preservatives, nothing artificial. I think this is how life is supposed to be...

Simple summer pleasures...

Our favorite around here would have to be ice cream. Even better if it's from Edaleen Dairy. Don's been working on our trees near the border a lot lately so a few days ago he made an Edaleen run on his way home. He brought 3 gallons of vanilla ice cream. I figure with vanilla we can take advantage of all these delicious berries and cherries for topping. The girls prefer cones. Oh course Jordyn doesn't quite get the concept of eating away at the cone as she eats her ice cream...kind of like the way she eats a hotdog without eating the bun. Maybe she's hoping for a refill?

Speaking of Jordyn, yesterday she again had no nap and went to be without a hitch last night at around 8:15. For any of you who have witnessed Jordyn's bedtime reluctance, you'll agree it's nothing short of a miracle.

Thursday, July 17, 2008


Garden with Sweet 1,000,000 tomato plant, Dahlias, Asters, Basil, and volunteer Cosmos, Bachelor Buttons, and tomatoes.

Pink Petunias planted in April, now flourishing! Also, my birthday rose bush, which is sending up very tall branches tha I don't know if I'm supposed to prune or not. Mom, can you come up?

Blueberries (or Strawberries, as Jordyn calls them) are turning blue! The girls rarely ask for a snack when the blueberries are ripe and the peas are full in the pods...

Summer Fun

Play sand in the sand table. Sun hats are required for this activity. Not because of the sun. Because otherwise their little scalps get full of sand.

Bouncing and splashing. What could be more fun? And, no, they can't bounce from the trampoline to the pool...we made sure there's enough distance between the two to not tempt the little buggars angels.

Dear Mr. Gopher...

Please move your tunnels 4 feet south. Just on the other side of the grey fence there. Then we'll be happy and you won't have your tunnels flooded on a daily basis.

Thank you,

The Management