After agreeing to accompany Chris to Montreal for the weekend I was perplexed about what to do with kids in this place. We had some kid friendly plans but it all came to a naught. It took kids s whole hour and half to go through Biodome. The Science centre and most of the Old Port were on strike and the Redpath Museum was open any day other than the day we were there. So we did what one always does in Montreal. Walked forever, bought treats and revelled in the odd.
After some thought I decided to put password on the kids blog but not mine. In their age of literacy, or near literacy, I want to be able to write cute stories without worrying if I am embarrassing them. As I only tangentially talk about my family here, there is little need to password it.
After three years of training, I have participated in the Rideau Lakes Tour. This is one of those quintessential Ottawa things. Instead of boring you about it, I’ll let the T-shirt convey the salient details:
Despite the head wind that some will tell you went up to 40km/h, this turned out to be a great girls’ weekend getaway. We kept a nice pace, had the best bike snacks I have ever imagined, got comfortable with clippy shoes and, for the first time ever, biked 200km in just 30 hours.
I am still putting my thoughts together about the weekend. More than anything it was fun. Though we never passed anyone that was not stopped and had the support van “chase” us from Narrows Lock to the finish, neither of us had done this kind mileage before which made our success sweet. Luisa pushed her bike to the limit and then a bit further. Though her derailleur was trashed before the last 20 kilometres were out, it was somewhat gratifying to know that we can complete the route as the support cars with bikes of people who had abandoned the ride passed by. It was fun to bomb down the hills we had climbed the day before. What a great weekend!
WARNING: As of next month I will put password on the blog. The password will be the name you get from first letters in our kids names.
The weather forecast was a bit iffy so we were not sure if we were doing the CHEO ride this year until the last minute. As you can see, we did end up at the event.
Because the adults were outnumbered, we did the 15km ride that took us along the river and back.
The weather started out fine enough, but drizzle caught us half way through and combined with cold made it a bit hard for the little bike ornaments that were not pedalling.
Don’t worry, they cheered up as soon as food arrived.
At the way back we got to enjoy the benefits of the minivan – out whole family including bikes still fits!
Final thoughts from the boys:
T: If it was a nice day I would have done 40km.
O: If it was a hot day I would do 70!
M: If it was a really hot day I would wear shorts!!!
Some days the kids come back from school with bad notes and we have to figure out how to deal with it best. The easiest thing to do is to take away screens or the night light for a week, but sometimes we get bored with that. When Owen gets in trouble, I prefer to have him have to help me in the kitchen for a week. Trevor has mostly figured out how to stay out of trouble and is getting really good at negotiating his rewards. I have to be careful about what I promise, a problem I did not have before. Markus hates losing his light and he is mostly good anyway. The trouble with Markus is that negotiating him out of his decisions is like ending the Cold War. No-one can win but no-one can look like they lost either.
We are at the point where parenting becomes more about making the right choices and saying the right things than brute force. I can’t easily lift my kids any more and 123 magic has the tendency to wear off. Fortunately, the kids have been wonderful and parenting is more fun now than ever before.
Parenting has been feeling like an Olympic sport lately. One in which you are pretty much guaranteed to not get a medal. Lucky our kids are so cute. The other day instead of arguing with them about something like not misbehaving after screen time, I decided to read the 2015 archive of Fowl Language with them. Owen really connected with this one. Trevor had to admit that this one is pretty much true.
So yes, ten points for us for allowing kids access to full English language.
We take them skiing too. Markus loves skiing but can’t do anything than sort of stand on skis. No turning, no snow plow. I have to put him inside of my snow plow, and let him hold on to the poles that are folded under his armpits. I managed to ski for about two hours like that. Think I can do six next time?
What I definitely can’t do is write coherent blog posts. I used all of my mental powers teaching half a dozen grade schoolers how to use Dewey Decimal System today. I think they got it too, I am so proud.
I’ve come up with a million different blog post topics. Should I write about how hectic life is? Or sing praises to the hiking knickers? Maybe actually review The Maritan? No! I will review my last years’ goals. My success is “achieved goal, but…”. It was nice to spend more time on actual vacations, but I ended up struggling to get things done without any free time by the end of the year. I learned a heap of delicious new recipes, but my kids will not touch the stews with a ten foot fork. I grew beautiful berries, but I ate them all on the way back from the garden to the kitchen. Watched a couple of good films, but then fell down a rabbit hole of depressing sic-fi and had to take a break.
So forget resolutions. Back to knickers… I believe similar were used for x-country skiing around these parts.
You can’t really walk into a sports store and buy corduroy knickers any more, you’d have to go on Etsy. Come to think of it, you probably could not buy them in the late 80’s when this photo was taken either (go hand-me-downs!). I’ll tell you a secret though – 3/4 yoga pants will do.
We wish you a wonderful winter solstice time and may the ever increasing daylight bring many knicker-worthy adventures!