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July 24, 2014

We're lucky enough to get to look after not one but two sets of pets in the next couple of weeks.

Black Beauty the bunny arrived last Monday, and next Monday we get to look after Iain's zoo! We were lucky enough to be invited for lunch with Iain and Renee (and to get a refresher course on looking after the animals). Elizabeth is still not fond of crickets, but is consoled by her frog feeding outfit that she chose out of Renee's special box. Plus she agrees with me that the frogs are pretty cool (not quiiite as cool as the chameleon though...) Her favourite frog is "sticky frog" also known as a red-eyed tree frog.


July 22, 2014

Pre-kids Margaret and I used to go berry picking nearly once a week during berry season, but strangely it is more difficult now. Margaret always tells me about how her kids would eat strawberries, leaves and all from the stroller. But Elizabeth wouldn't eat any kind of berry until recently and Matthew was showing all signs of being the same. As a result, while they enjoyed the outing, both kids were usually ready to go long before our baskets are full!

There is hope though - Elizabeth picked a full basket all by herself! Matthew has obligingly slept through the last few times we went picking, giving the further entertainment of sending Elizabeth to check if he is getting overheated (sweaty).


July 21, 2014

THE summer sun shone round me,
The folded valley lay
In a stream of sun and odour,
That sultry summer day.

The tall trees stood in the sunlight
As still as still could be,
But the deep grass sighed and rustled
And bowed and beckoned me.

The deep grass moved and whispered
And bowed and brushed my face.
It whispered in the sunshine:
"The winter comes apace."

Robert Louis Stevenson


July 19, 2014

Camping this year was at Rideau River Provincial Park. We were here two years ago, but not in the group sites. Everyone wanted to check that there were no wasps... The group sites here are very nice. Private, not too far from the washrooms, bear proof garbage that is emptied every day, separate group beach that is groomed daily... The swimming area was pretty nice - a little weedy although nothing compared to the river itself which was unswimmable due to weeds (!) The only complaint was that it wasn't really deep enough for adult swimming but it was lovely for splashing around... We brought our canoe, and Dianne, Grandma J and Heather paddled Heather's canoe from her house to the campground (how cool is that?!)

Uncle Chris, Uncle Dave and Auntie Karen and kids and Grandma and Grandpa J came for the afternoon and stayed to celebrate Auntie Yukiko's birthday even though they couldn't stay the night.

We saw some pretty cool caterpillars - a super fuzzy brown one and another SUPER fat one which was probably the largest caterpillar I have ever seen (barely resisted the begging to take them home...) After the kids were all in bed, the adults went to the beach and chased frogs and minnows in the dark. Then we ran around like crazy people with the glow sticks and practised our synchronized sparkler writing. It should be a new Olympic sport. David S would probably win...

The new face is Dan - Janice's boyfriend. He spent the weekend being tormented and half-drowned by our many small children. He's a good sport.


July 18, 2014

The best part of living close to cousins is getting to play with them! 

Eagle-eyed readers might wonder why Matthew has a bandaid on his arm. Doesn't everyone get "take both kids for bloodwork" as a to-do item as they are frantically getting ready to go camping for the weekend?

Since children of celiacs are supposed to be tested roughly every five years, Elizabeth got to have her blood taken as a matter of routine. She was not very much consoled by the thought of it being for "a science experiment", but did take pride in being "braver than Matthew". Matthew got his too because he's starting to fall off his curve. Maybe he's taking after his Daddy, but our pediatrician (Dr Lynn Jacoby) would like to be sure nothing else is going on. We seriously lucked out with our health care provider for the kids, y'all.

I was surprised to learn that the test is only covered if administered in a hospital setting despite the test being strongly recommended by Health Canada for my kids as a matter of routine, and despite in this particular case a physician wanting to screen the kids due to concerns about their weight and growth. At least here in Ottawa, that actually means that the test is only covered for kids under the age of two because CHEO does not perform celiac tests for kids over two. The test is now $60! (It was only $42 when I needed it a decade ago - something the technician was surprised to learn as it apparently has been $60 for many years). But I think ridiculous that it is not covered.

I managed to get a urine sample from Matthew despite great personal peril (sadly, he's still very much in diapers). It took two tries, because he only pees on the toilet in the morning and I still have not got the hang of elimination communication with boys. Then when we arrived at CHEO we discovered that urine samples "expire" after four hours - coincidentally when we arrived. So he had to get a urine catching bag after all which was really annoying and hard to detach. But we did get back to CHEO within the requested two hours and all the trauma of the day was wiped out by getting to splash with cousins...

The corn is growing too!


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