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November 16, 2014

At 21 months we started the process of night weaning. Matthew is unimpressed.

He's getting new words every day, but many of them sound the same - even to Mommy and Daddy. Elizabeth often claims to understand what he's trying to say. Suspiciously this often coincides with what she'd like him to do. He doesn't mimic words the way Elizabeth did, but once he's decided he's using a particular sound for a particular meaning, he gets annoyed if we don't quite catch on.

On the plus side he's started to negotiate. This makes giving daily iron much easier as we can trade chocolate for cooperation. This might have been as of 20 months, a post that is conspicuously missing. Mommy has been too exhausted to blog recently - sorry kid, we really did intend to write a monthly post about your growth and development until you were two but the dreaded second child syndrome is stronger than the best of intentions. There are extenuating circumstances, not least that you spend many of your waking moments trying to demolish the house, launching yourself down the stairs or generally leaving a trail of destruction behind you. Elizabeth can always tell when you've been in her room, no matter how well Daddy thinks he's tidied up afterwards. But we all adore you nonetheless.


November 15, 2014

Know what's a bit jarring? My friends' kids are all growing up much faster than ought to be allowed...

We appreciated this visit very much because we don't often get a chance to see Kaitlyn or her Daddy.


November 14, 2014

Hardly enough to cover the leaves, but Elizabeth is already dreaming of snowmen, forts and tobogganing.

"Is the canal be open?" she asked eagerly.


November 12, 2014

I recently participated in a "busy bag" exchange. The idea is that you make an activity that can fit in a bag and then pull out the bag to keep your active toddler busy while you need some peace and quiet. Exchanges allow you to make a single bag multiple times, and then you end up with as many different activities as participants.

I'm looking forward to pulling out our loot when Matthew is a wee bit older. Elizabeth was very keen to play with all his new activities, but he doesn't quite have the fine motor skills for some of them - eg Matthew's version of a busy bag where the kids squeeze a clothespin and clip it to the side of a box is to dismantle all the clothespins into numerous pieces.

I made a geoboard as my contribution. It was so popular that I actually ended up making a couple of extra ones - one for Elizabeth and the other went to Isabelle's and Xander's house. You can use them for all kinds of math activities so they are trendy in the homeschooling community, but my kids mostly just like to make drawings.


November 11, 2014

Some of you might have read about Ottawa's recent terrorist attack (the shooter on Parliament Hill on October 22nd). Most of the schools within two hundred kilometres of Ottawa apparently responded with "lockdowns", which in my opinion was way overkill. Elizabeth's school, however, is actually not that far from Parliament and Rideau Centre is walkable. (At one point there was a report of additional shootings at the Rideau Centre, though this turned out to be a social media rumour rather than actual fact.) So we were not surprised to learn that that her school not only locked all the doors to the school but they locked all the classroom doors, kept the kids away from the windows and made the kindergarteners whisper for nearly six hours. Apparently the stories given to the kids is left up to the discretion of the teacher. So Elizabeth's friend Adi was told about a wild animal roaming the playstructures. Elizabeth's class received a more truthful version but unfortunately a little too much detail for our rather sensitive girl. She's now rather scared of Parliament (doesn't seem convinced that the "monster" that was "shooting people dead" isn't still hanging around) and she was very concerned about Prime Minister Harper. She's fond of him because he invited her to a party with a merry-go-round, you know...

I was worried that perhaps Remembrance day might be a bit intense for Elizabeth under the circumstances and who knows what her teacher might decide to talk about, so we decided to keep her home. Besides, we traditionally make Christmas cake with Grandma on Remembrance Day and Elizabeth was a bit put out that we made it without her help last year.

It was very nearly a disaster. Before heading to Grandma's, we decided it would be fun to rake the leaves. It was a warm day and the forecast was looking chilly. Maybe even a little snow coming... So we wanted to get the leaves off the ground.

The kids were having a blast, especially Elizabeth. Suddenly she started screaming. Turns out there was a wasp hiding in the leaves and it flew up her pants and stung her.

It took a while to calm her down but eventually we were able to proceed as planned with swimming and cake making...


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