Monday, August 17, 2009

Vacation Round up

So, our vacation was a little more low key this year, because Dave and I were both so burnt out and it rained and rained and rained. We house sat in Winnipeg for two weeks for my brother. A lot of it was just us taking turns watching the boys while the other person slept / got out to civilization. Dave went on his reading retreat while I watched the boys, and when he came back he spent a lot of time with the boys. Because I actually wasn't nursing anyone this year, Dave sent me out to movies and coffees in the evenings while he put the boys to bed and enjoyed Speedvision.

None the less, we did get up to a few things. We went for a hike in the Assiniboine forest:
And took over the construction section of the Manitoba Children's Museum:

The boys enjoyed a lot of Treehouse and Retro Teletoon and PBS, since they only get an hour of DVDs fromt he library a day at home. Andrew was thrilled to get to see TransFormers, Spiderman, Superman, Bugs Bunny and (his new obsession0, Word Girl.

When the sun did peek out we visited the local schoolground which had a great park:
And of course there was always the Thomas Table in Chapters, another luxury for us. This usually lasted for a while before Aaron started getting into everything, but we enjoyed it while we could. Eventually we got so exasperated that we bought an umberella stroller to strap him into. That was after the day he took one of the kids cars they have for sale and I had to chase him around the entire store as he veered and careened around tables of books and surprised patrons' legs. I wonder where he gets his precocious driving skills from . . .

On one nice day we went to the Forks and spent about an hour watching the BMXers at the bike / skate park, and then got lovely organic cinnamin buns at the market. Before this they were doing 360s in a different part of the park, which was equally enthralling.
We went to the Winnipeg zoo, too. Andrew declared the animals too smelly, but he did really like these stepping stones:

And the prairie dogs were a big hit, too. It was funny, becuase there would be this huge empty field with a sign that said "Russian Gnu" or something similar on it. There would be three gnus hiding under a tree in the background, and about 30 prairie dogs wandering around in the foreground of the field.

Then we moved on to Regina, where we set up the tent. You may remember from last year that our tent weathered a huge rain storm, and so Dave was excited to see how it would do in the three days of rain that the forecast was predicting. I told him he could do a guest post about how to select and set up a good tent if there was no water in our tent at all after days of rain. The tent survived the two and a half days of rain we got, so stay tuned for Dave's guest post soon.

Anyway, here I am catching a little more sleep while the boys play with their GI Joes.

We also visited the Royal Saskatchewan Museum of Natural History on a day when it was pouring rain, which had some fun old school museum taxidermy going on, and some dinosoar bones. In the basement they had this fun kids area full of dinos. I think Someone had put a finger on my camera lens, so sorry for the blurry photos.

We were super fortunate that the weather cleared up for the Regina Folk Music festival. This year we did a lot more reading and a lot less active watching of the music. This was partially because some of the music was similar to acts in past years, and a lot of it was stuff that's not as much to our taste as it has been in past years. We did enjoy a lot of the music on Friday and Sunday night, and we really liked a fusion band, from BC, called From Dublin to Dubai -- a fusion of electronica, traditional Irish music and Bhangra dance music. It took me back to my days teaching at Princess Margaret, where the school assemblies had performances from the Bhangra dance team and the Ballywood Dance Team. And to Abbotsford where the IndoCanadian teenagers would blast dance music with traditional Indian beats from their cars. To much of the Regina audience I would imagine this was a whole new style of music so they got a lot more interested listening than spirited dancing. We really liked seeing K-OS live, and Bohemian Soundclash, and a new group called Chic Gamine was great, too.

In any case, can you guess who was reading what?

Aaron had a lot of fun at the Children's area at the festival. Here he is doing some two-fisted mural painting, just before the volunteer kicked him out for overly rowdy painting:

Andrew was getting a bit overstimulated by Sunday afternoon, so instead of making necklaces or painting he decided to peruse a toy catalogue I had brought, and draw:

One of my favorite things about camping is the traditional baths in the laundry tub:

And the campsite we usually go to has these crazy big balls. In past years, I've never let the boys play on them, becuase they do sort of roll, but this year Andrew was old enough to climb across them all himself, so they were a lot more fun. Aaron made his way across with help, but he liked jumping off the shorter ones.

That was about our vacation. I got caught up on my sleep and am now feeling remotely human again. Dave got to spend a lot of time with the boys, and we got to go to a few cultural and city-type things we usually miss out on. We have come back refreshed, and ready to start our new year. How was your summer?

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