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January 22, 2012
Now if only she could figure out how to work those buttons
   

January 21, 2012

Elizabeth and I went skating with Auntie Heather and cousins Josie and Daniel.

 

Josie skates very well. Daniel is just learning to skate and doing very well. He's about as fast as Elizabeth, except Elizabeth is very uninterested in skating on "bumpy" ice.  Lesson-wise she's getting faster, starting to learn how to glide (mostly on the right foot) and is quite graceful and fast when turning in circles. But on the canal she takes a few steps, demands to hold someone's hand, takes a few more and then just wants to go "fast fast".

 

"Fast fast" is also known as gliding while someone else tows her along, and she quite enjoys that! Daniel kept lifting his legs while being towed, which was hard on the arms for both tow-ee and tow-er(s). 

 

I brought the stroller and popped Elizabeth in when she thought her feet were getting cold (about Fifth again). They were like little ice cubes - amazing how fast she seems to get cold. She must not have great blood circulation in her extremities! I brought a sleeping bag and one of those foot warmer things to keep her warm and she warmed right up. At a certain point Elizabeth, Daniel and I turned around to shuffle back to the hut while the others sprinted up and down the canal. Elizabeth sang "warming songs" all the way home.

   

January 20, 2012

We recently went to Preston Hardware to buy a new plug for the second floor tub.

 

It's a dangerous store. We came out with a few additional items, including a miniature snow shovel that Elizabeth declared "just my size, Momma!"

 

We did manage to leave the glowing sink behind. It was so cheesy looking it was almost cool. But definitely not $7000 cool. Brendan is apparently contemplating whether he can build his own for the basement. I'm not sure if he's joking.

   

January 18, 2012

We have a cool book that we got from Staples ("How Your Body Works" by Anita Ganeri) for $3.75. It doesn't appear to be in print anymore, and I'm totally sad that we didn't stock up because I'd love to pass it on to lots of little kids that I know.

 

Anyway, Elizabeth loves this book, so we thought we'd go through some of the topics in a little more depth... Okay, so Elizabeth's parents are science nerds - we freely admit it!

 

The first topic is "the cell" so we took out every "juvenile" book on cells stocked by our local library system in English and in French (I requested the ones that weren't immediately available, so I'm sure I got them all...) We looked at a ton of very pretty pictures of cells, but shockingly many were not particularly age appropriate.

 

A few of the books that we did like:

Sam's Science: I Know How My Cells Make Me Grow Elizabeth loves this one. The book mainly talks about how you grow because your body's cells are busy making more cells. Mommy could have done without the last page though, which shows the little boy laughing at his mother who is "growing out instead of up". Whenever anyone bends over and shows skin, Elizabeth has taken to repeating "You're busting out of your pants!" Brendan thinks this is the funniest thing ever, unfortunately. Oh well!

 

Your Body's Heroes and Villains: Microexplorers : Learning Aobut Immune Cells : The Tiny Defenders That Safeguard Our Lives Against Nasty Bacteria and Viruses At first glance this one is way too advanced but Elizabeth was fascinated by the idea of her "defender" cells battling against the nasty bacteria and viruses that make her sick. I wouldn't expect to be reading this book word for word to any two year old, but ours is too small to notice that we're only reading a sentence or two per page. Small Stuff demanded that Mommy read this one over and over.

 

Cells Also not exactly aimed at the toddler set, this one is simply structured (making it easy to read the short attention span friendly bullet points) and had a simple illustration of a cell. Why so many "juvenile" books about cells can't include a basic diagram of a cell is beyond me! Now admittedly the library is likely missing some great titles, but they did have quite a number of books. In English anyways.

 

One of the books suggested making your own model of a cell with plastic bag cell membrane, jello cytoplasm, cherry nucleus and M&M organelles. We added the orange to represent mitochondrion because one of the books talked about how there are "fires" inside your body and totally captured Elizabeth's imagination. Subsequently it's probably her favourite part. Although NOOOcleus is probably a close second, just by virtue of the way it sounds. We rapidly realized that M&Ms are not the ideal materials to use in jello as the dye diffuses into it within a minute. Mommy and Daddy had to close their eyes in order to eat the disgusting result. We suggest raisins instead...

   

January 17, 2012

A few people have noted rather pointedly that I never actually posted pictures from the most recent Gingerbread party. I'm blaming this working for a living coupled with more than 300 pictures to sort through, but you will all be happy to finally see a selection of my favourites. Uncle Dave and Brendan were rather trigger happy (ahem). The full set of pictures are available in the usual place; email me if you don't remember where that is.

 

There were many, many small children. (And more to come!) So quite a number of us parental types were kept busy helping the candy end up on the gingerbread houses and not inside the child. A glass did end up encased in a house, but luckily it was Elizabeth's. John broke out the power tools for his submarine. The basement got rather untidy, but not less tidy than Elizabeth and her cousins usually manage.

 

I loved Laura and Julia's Rideau Canal, and of course Auntie Janice and Kevin's Viking ship was a triumph of Gingerbread art.

   

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