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October 21, 2019

Our late start to the garden meant that we never really got much out of it other than beans, currants, rhubarb and gooseberries, all of which were fairly prolific. I still found it quite amusing even if we hardly got any tomatoes and the poor pumpkins just didn't have enough time to get big enough to ripen. There's always next year!


October 20, 2019

Much to Grandma's dismay it was time for another birthday party and this time it was her's.  The kids all had lots of fun making her cute cards (even continuing to update them after she'd opened them).


October 19, 2019

Elizabeth decided she'd rather help setup for the Douvris Halloween party than go to the two (TWO!) tournaments happening this weekend. She was pretty excited to be asked to help. So we dropped her off at the dojo and went to check out the ski show happening this weekend at the EY center. I was hoping to be able to find some secondhand cross country skis as we've concluded that we are not likely to go crosscountry skiing if we need to rent skis. All last winter we had the vague plan that we could rent skis one day but it turns out that the barrier to entry is too high for this mama once you add in the exhaustion of figuring out where to go and having to set aside enough time at once to make the endeavor worth it!


Anyway, someone told me the ski show was the best place to go so off we went. I sort of hoped that I could just buy something that looked possible for Elizabeth but it quickly became apparent that IF there had been any suitable secondhand crosscountry skis available at this show, they were long gone by the time we got there and in any case we would definitely need Elizabeth in order to buy her proper skis. Oh well. We looked at lots of booths and played in a random Waldorf preschool house.


I was pleased to be able to order Elizabeth a free snowpass which supposedly will give her some free downhill skiing this year (it's available to fourth and fifth graders). We tried out indoor snowboarding which was a lot of fun.


Then I decided that I was just going to buy skis, even if they weren't secondhand. So Amelia, Matthew and I all acquired skis and everyone was very happy about it.


After the ski show Matthew got his costume and I dropped him off at the Halloween party. Except that I was actually an hour early or something so we killed some time buying Elizabeth some bright red lipstick for her costume and random groceries and THEN dropped Matthew off for real. Elizabeth had been busy putting up many many decorations and was bouncing off the walls. Matthew had planned to go through the maze "only when the lights were on" because he'd found the experience too intense last year, but apparently decided he didn't even want to do that because he could see all the people waiting to jump out at him. I asked him if he'd had fun even if he hadn't done the maze and he said yes. Apparently the maze isn't the main attraction for him. I dropped extremely creepily costumed Erika off at the same time that I picked up Matthew and when I came back again later Elizabeth dragged me through the maze so I could see for myself how wonderful it was. They certainly do have fun with it!


It was clear that all involved had a wonderful time!




October 18, 2019

It's a terrible photo, but it's what I have to commemorate Michael's first sleepover.


This was actually taken the morning after. Not that Michael ACTUALLY spent the entire night downstairs... In fact we rescued poor Matthew from the baby at about 11pm, when Michael woke up and wanted to nurse. We heard the baby and came down to find Matthew sort of feebly patting Michael on the back and saying "please go back to sleep".


We were doubly amused because Matthew had complained that Michael wouldn't go to sleep peacefully in the first place. The three of them had excitedly settled down and were bouncing off the walls but strangely enough by the time Matthew and Amelia were tired and wanted to sleep Michael was still very chatty and wiggly.


October 14, 2019

The kids wanted to go "pumpkin picking" as part of their fall bucket list so when I asked them what they wanted to do Thanksgiving Monday, everyone agreed we should check this off our list. It was supposed to rain but after we got home from open mat karate in the morning the rain appeared to have stopped so we decided to go for it. Open mat is when you can do whatever you want in the dojo. There was a lot of gymnastics, some fort building out of pads, much chatting and a wee bit of actual karate.


Erika and Maria came over for lunch so I had six kids for our adventure. We decided to go to Proulx farms because it apparently had many playgrounds, a wagon ride and bouncy castles. I was kind of interested in one that had a zipline and ponies but it was in Van Kleek Hill over an hour's drive away so we settled on Cumberland.


It WAS fun, though I do have to say that apple picking is by far a better deal since we had to pay per person admission in addition to a per pumpkin fee. The wagon ride is setup for Halloween, which was a little surprising. In fact much of the farm was already decorated for Halloween, with skeletons in amusing poses scattered throughout. The wagon ride was also quite long, with a stop for popcorn and cotton candy (extra charge) at an animal zoo made out of haybales. The haybales decorated to be animals and tractors and things was a bit of a theme, and were interesting to look at. There was also a spooky house which looked a bit daunting - actually everyone except Erika initially refused to go in but I took Elizabeth and Michael through and we discovered it wasn't scary as much as it was creepy. After that everyone decided to check it out.


Only Erika was brave enough to do the haunted bouncy castle. Elizabeth claimed she was brave enough but it smelled too bad. It was extremely dark and it did smell.  They all went on the more traditional bouncy castle several times, even Michael who felt that life was a bit unfair when he had to come out before he wanted to so the big kids could bounce properly.


The slides and playstructures were very popular, though some of our crew were too big for some of the slides and had to fold up in interesting ways in order to fit.


There was a corn maze here too. Elizabeth and Erika thought it most annoying that I insisted everyone stay together but I had visions of losing kids again and it was getting close to the end of the day. As soon as we found the way out of the rather muddy corn maze I declared that it was time to select our pumpkins. Luckily for us the farm provides wheelbarrows in order to facilitate pumpkin transport. I was amused by the selection process. Maria found her perfect pumpkin within the first thirty seconds. Elizabeth wanted something with a nice shape but not too much in the way of guts. Matthew wanted the biggest pumpkin he could find. Amelia wandered around a while before settling on a rather large pumpkin that won't stand up straight and stubbornly insisted that this was HER pumpkin. Erika must have looked at every pumpkin in the entire field before settling on one of the first ones she looked at and while Michael seemed quite fond of one he could sit on he was easily persuaded to take Elizabeth's runner up "in case she changed her mind".


We headed home at closing with a trunkful of pumpkins and many happy children.


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