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January 31, 2013

Grandma and Grandpa H are home from Angola for a six month furlough, just in time for baby!


Elizabeth still calls them "Flat Grandma" and "Flat Grandpa"... (since they are the ones she usually sees in 2D via Skype.) She's been enjoying having extra playmates on demand. Grandma has helped stage  many puppet shows and endless games of Billy Goat Gruff clip-clopping across the basement. Grandma is quite popular as a bedtime helper, which bodes well for next week when Mommy will be otherwise occupied with brother.


Elizabeth took Grandpa to the Science and Tech museum and got him to pretend to be a hamster.




January 28, 2013

We thought Elizabeth might like to have a practice sleepover with Auntie Janice prior to baby's arrival. It's not that Elizabeth has to change her sleeping arrangements, but if the disappearance of her parents leaves her feeling lonely we thought maybe a somewhat familiar alternative would be helpful.


Elizabeth was very much looking forward to the sleepover until about noon on Sunday, when she abruptly decided she "wanted to sleep in her own bed" because "she would miss her mommy and it might be dark". Never mind that Mommy would be right upstairs instead of across the hall. Never mind that Elizabeth usually sleeps in the dark.


She got increasingly anxious about the whole concept throughout the next day and we weren't at all sure she would go through with it. But the time came and although Elizabeth was tearfully and rather desperately telling me that she "wasn't going to have a sleepover", a few minutes later Auntie Janice managed to coax her downstairs to just "take a look at the bed". Then Elizabeth was convinced to lie down. Then she agreed to stay for a story and song...


Despite phone calls and squeaky lion falling out of bed, she slept peacefully all night until Auntie Janice's alarm clock went off. Turns out that while Janice can sleep through her alarms, Elizabeth cannot...


January 24, 2013

Apparently Ottawa's heating system is broken (how else to explain a 60C degree differential between inside and outside the past few days???)


This is good for the canal, except that it is just too cold to go outside to enjoy it! It was so cold that our ABS and traction control systems were non-operational. The suspension was frozen. The seats were rock hard (no give in the foam, because it was frozen!). When Brendan took his foot off the accelerator, the car stopped without coasting - too much friction from ice and frozen fluids. At least our car started though - our poor neighbours drive a diesel. I hear it needs a tow someplace warm to thaw out the gas.


The upside to -30C (-40C windchill) is an opportunity for some fun science. I decided we should do two winter experiments. Unusually, they both worked, though at first I thought the winter bubbles looked remarkably like summer bubbles. This was partly because the warm air from my breath was keeping the bubbles from freezing right away. Apparently they freeze faster if you make the bubbles by waving the bubble wand around.


Also, if you haven't ever boiled a kettle and poured it outdoors when super cold, it's very impressive. Elizabeth hypothesized that the hot water would melt the ice. She was quite surprised to find out what really happens! I want to try it again with food colouring!


January 23, 2013
A while back you may remember that we were complaining about the ridiculous heat.  Now while this may not be hot compared to some places you have to take it in context.  Here we live in a city of temperature extremes.  On the one hand we can see plus 38 C and on the other we can get -30 C.  That's a spread of 70 C and doesn't take into account humidex or wind chill (both of which we do pretty well on as well).  So while some places may be hotter and some places may be colder there are few that see the range we do for a major city.  The shot of the car was taken at nearly 10 AM by which time the sun had been busy warming up the air for quite some time (albeit not very effectively).  The forecast screen shot was after sunrise as well and was likely not the coldest it got either.  Anyway while this is all very interesting, Elizabeth would really much rather that it warmed up a bit so that she can go outside and play.  Please.

January 22, 2013

Some things are just silly.  These photos are amongst such things.


For the uninitiated: Rabbids a definition.


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