Friday, July 15, 2011

The downside of baking sans recipes...

I try to bake something for breakfast every evening so that in the morning my early risers (Dylan & Don) can take their breakfast with them. My usual fare is muffins and coffee cakes of various flavors and types. I don't use recipes. I just throw ingredients into my KitchenAid mixer until the batter looks the right consistency and then bake it up, hoping for the best. Breakfast is usually very edible. But today's coffee cake...was heavenly. I'm not sure what I did differently, but it didn't rise up like a cake, it was more dense like a brownie. And the streusel topping was perfect. If I was able to duplicate this recipe, I'm pretty sure I could sell it to Starbuck's or other hoity toity coffee is just that good!

Thursday, July 14, 2011


Here is Haley slicing 10 pounds of strawberries that we purchased from Krause's. We enjoyed them on shortcake with whipped cream topping. So yummy!

Sand play at Krause's

My parents took Jordyn and Nick for their first Krause's sand box visit of the year. When they came home my mom said the kids did really well except that Nick needed to learn some "sand box etiquette." : )

Pizza for 13!

This week we've been a household of 13! In addition to the international students, my parents and Haley Smith have been visiting so we have had a very busy household! Some of the people are away during the day at school or work, but the evenings are busy, especially meal time. On Tuesday night I made SIX pizzas. That's a new record for me. At least that I can remember. Thankfully my mom and Haley are great helpers : )

Strawberry picking at Krause's

On Tuesday my parents went across the street with Sean, Haley, Patience, and Jordyn to experience strawberry picking. At one point my mom asked Sean if "picking strawberries" was one of the jobs available to him while working there. He replied, "I hope not." We've been enjoying the strawberries a lot...eating them fresh instead of freezing or jamming them. I might regret that...

Old enough to play Nintendo DS...

but still young enough for a pacifier. At least he thinks so. He's going to have a rude awakening after the cruise : (

Monday, July 11, 2011

Bridal Falls Waterpark

On Saturday we all headed out to the Bridal Falls Waterpark and spent the day on the waterslides! Everyone had a great time, as you can see in the pictures (thank you, Lee, for being our resident photographer!).

Friday, July 08, 2011

A bike for Nick

Mom and Lee arrived for a visit on Thursday, and they brought Nick this very cool and adorable bike for an early birthday present. It's all decorated like Lightning McQueen from the Cars movie, which is a favorite of Nick's. He was all smiles and we spent lots of minutes pushing him around on it...he understood the steering, but didn't get the pedaling. The first words out of his mouth this morning were, "I want to ride my bike." As of this evening, he can pedal himself and he's already an expert steerer. He LOVES this bike!

Wednesday, July 06, 2011

Welcome Haley!

Today Haley Smith came for a week-long visit while her parents are busy touring Europe! We had a productive day: we set up the pool! And we made pizza for dinner, which Bruce, Sam, and Nick loved : )

Sam, Bruce, and Nick enjoying homemade pizza! They requested leftover pizza for their lunch tomorrow.

Nick showing Dylan where the moon is.

Haley Smith joins the Motley Crew : )

Nick loving the pool despite the Arctic temperatures.

The Littles.

Tuesday, July 05, 2011

"A flower for you!"

That's what my darling boy said to me as he handed me this dandelion (missing most of the seeds). My heart melted. I'm not normally a gushy mom who puts dandelions in a glass of water to show my appreciation to the bearer, but I have to admit that Nick's gesture really made my heart skip a beat. I must be getting soft!

Monday, July 04, 2011

Meet our triplets!

Yesterday Don went into Vancouver airport to pick up our international students: Bruce, Sam, and Nick. They are all 10 or 11 years old and we are pleased and surprised at how much English they can speak and understand even on their first day here. I'm sure they'll be able to learn a lot of English during their classes.

They're in the same class at school so they know each other really well and get along great. We're looking forward to a great 3 weeks!

Within 10 minutes of walking through our front door, this is what they were doing:

And then later they played Wii with the girls. They also brought their own fun electronic entertainment: Sam has an Ipad 2 (Don is jealous!) and Nick has an adorable Winnie the Pooh cell phone (Haley is jealous!).

Last night I put out a huge spread of food for our family and the three boys, not knowing exactly how much food would be consumed on a regular basis. I made some Chinese food that Jimmy taught me how to make, Don barbequed hamburgers, we had chips, veggies, and lemonade. Each boy ate 1 hamburger and that is all. We had tons of leftovers, which I normally don't have.

This morning they were up bright and early, but I think it's just that their internal clocks are still off from traveling half-way around the world. They had homemade blueberry muffins for breakfast and they ate those heartily.  At 8:30 we loaded them all up into the van and drove them to their first day of school. Today they're at school all day but from this point on they'll spend the morning doing English lessons and then they'll do something fun in the afternoons. It's a great program and the boys are lucky to have such a great opportunity.

Welcome to Canada, boys!

The summer ritual: foot baths!

Because the Littles play outside A LOT and sometimes don't even wear shoes out there, evening foot baths have become the norm (on non-bath nights). Last night I set Nick on the counter with his little grubby feet soaking and went to put his clothes in the laundry room. When I came back, this is what I found:

I guess this is what you call a bath during water restrictions : )

Saturday, July 02, 2011

Canada Day fireworks

Don and I got super brave yesterday and decided to throw caution to the wind and take the kids to the fireworks in Langley that start at 10:30. In preparation, we gave Nick a nice long nap so we knew he'd be good to go.

The girls practically vibrated with excitement all day long. Finally, at 10:00, we loaded them up in the van and headed down to the park. We had just enough time to get to the field and sit down on our bamboo mat (thank you, Edith!). The kids LOVED it. They all did great, right up to the time they had to get out of the van at home. Then Jordyn was too tired to do anything but lay down and cry. But even with that minor snafu, Don and I decided that it was a great adventure and next year we'd do some of the festivities and then stay for the fireworks!