February 5, 2023
LOTR Second movie

I thought a quiet afternoon was in order, so we invited Erika over to watch the second Lord of the Rings with us (we're still working on last year's "New Year's Resolutions" lol) The younger kids were very happy to veg out on screens all afternoon while we watched "ooga loogas". Unfortunately we didn't get started as soon as we had hoped. By the time we'd picked Erika up after karate and made snacks it was almost an hour later than I had hoped. Elizabeth missed going to youth group and everyone was very late for dinner but it was still pretty fun.

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February 4, 2023
Snow clearing

It's always exciting when the snow clearing machines come along, even if we don't think it's particularly required on our street (it's very wide). I certainly would have selected Percy first - a street that is getting increasingly one-way and difficult to navigate. I guess they have already cleared the snow on Percy once and are still finishing the first round, but I think some streets should take priority even if they HAVE already been done once. But I digress.


It's particularly exciting when snow clearing is slated during daylight because then you don't get woken up in the wee hours of the night. On the downside, we have a number of activities during the day on Saturday. Matthew's riding class was cancelled due to the extreme cold but Elizabeth still needed to get to karate so we were out and about and every time we came back to the house of course there was a new berm. Normally we just circle the block and wait elsewhere for half an hour or so but due to challenges with their dump trucks the process actually took hours. This was not really an issue though, because there was the best sidewalk plow guy ever, who noticed me hovering and after collecting my house number plowed a path so I could get home. Later when I had to get out again, he came and plowed me out!


We were fascinated at one point when one of the snow trucks carefully wiggled itself into the middle of the street and dumped the entire load. I sadly wasn't close enough to get a photo of the snowfilled basket high in the air. I asked Lauren if she knew what it was doing as it was in front of her house - "Spite dump?" she replied lol. Turns out it had suffered some kind of mechanical failure so there was a delay while the tow truck came and pulled it away, and a delay to clear the snow out of the way so that the rest of the snow trucks could make it down the street on their way out to the snow depot.



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Museum of Science and Tech

All this going to museums has reawakened interest and the older kids have been talking about all the fun things we could be going to see. "I want to go to the TRAIN ZOO!" announced Michael, and after some discussion about exactly what he meant by a train zoo, we found out that he wanted to go see trains at the museum of science and tech.


We didn't have long because we did this between Elizabeth's piano and karate classes, but I happen to prefer smaller doses of the science and tech museum anyway.


We still managed to hit the train, bike, snowshoe AND sound exhibits, more or less to satisfaction, despite having only about half an hour to really see things.

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Polar Vortex

It's been extremely cold the last couple of days, although our house was quite comfortable (in fact a bit too hot because we opened the door to get a parcel at the wrong moment and the thermostat overshot on the heating as a result)


Around here frigid temperatures are an excuse to do cold weather science (-42C with wind chill and below 30 generally)!


Elizabeth was kind of making fun at Matthew for "making a weird face" and being scared when flinging the boiling hot water into the air. So she went to show him how it was done and flung the entire mug. Everyone thought this was very funny. Luckily the mug didn't break because it's one of my favourites!

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February 3, 2023
Museum of Nature reprise

It was so cold today that we didn't want to wait at the bus stop, so we just kept the younger kids home from school. Elizabeth didn't want to stay home, so we drove her.

Amelia and Michael were kind of outraged to hear that Matthew went to see the owls yesterday, so we decided to go again today after I was done her workday. They have been bugging me to go see them every week as we pass the museum on the way to church.


"We won't have long", I warned them. "We have to pick Elizabeth up from school so she can get to work on time". So we hurried to the museum and I discovered that I had left my phone at home, meaning I had no credit card to pay for parking, no ID and most importantly no tickets for the museum. The kids were not very impressed but luckily the museum is very close to our house so we still had time for a visit.


It was frostbite in minutes kind of weather so while we did go to see the owls, it was literally a case of dashing out to the cages, taking a couple of photos and then running back to the warmth of the museum.


I let each kid pick an exhibit and we hit the highlights. Amelia was intrigued by the throat-singing in the arctic exhibit. Michael wanted to go see the loons. Amelia was distraught to discover that covid has reduced the number of toy birds significantly (and where are the eggs!?!) but of the two or three left one WAS a loon so Michael was happy. Matthew wanted to see dinosaurs but Michael was very concerned. "Maybe some of them are real" he thought. He insisted that we inspect them only from a distance upstairs. We even managed to squeeze in a quick visit to say hi to the spiders.

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February 2, 2023

We had porcupine balls for supper in honour of groundhog day. We did not discuss what it might mean if the groundhog dies before it sees its shadow, as did Fred la marmotte this year lol.


We did duly celebrate Candlemas with many candles at breakfast and supper.

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Museum of Nature with Leo

Matthew's friend was going to the museum of Nature this evening, so after Michael was in bed and Amelia at brownies we went to join him.


The boys had a real blast, especially seeing the owls for the first time and getting to check out the tidepool exhibit. I was amused to discover that the arctic exhibit is a lot bigger than we had really noticed before - the kids usually hyperfocus on the lights broadcast on the ice and we've never investigated any of the rest. Matthew was very surprised to find an entire section with animals and art. (It's very interesting by the way, highly recommend)


The kids were a bit reluctant to leave at closing, but I suggested we should get moving "before we get locked in". After that they motored, even though I clarified that I was joking.

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January 31, 2023
January Food Diary

Matthew has been agitating to be allowed to help with the meal planning... and Elizabeth has been reluctant to give up "her" job. However, I decided it was time, so the kids agreed to alternate months starting in the new year.


Apparently Matthew's food spelling isn't much better than Elizabeth's was when she started meal planning. Since this is Matthew, we had sushi twice (he suggested once a week), lots of pasta, tacos, Supper for becdis (breakfast). We also had ceknan ngit (chicken nuggets), cilly (chili), fci and cep (Fish and Chips), Cinis (Chinese), Hmabge (Hamburgers), and sope (I was relieved to find out this was soup). Elizabeth kindly translated some of the more obsure items.


One of our New Year's Resolutions is to try something from a different continent every month. This month was featured North America, and we decided to try something from Hawaii. One could argue about whether Hawaii is technically part of Oceania or North America, but for the purposes of getting to eat something new we decided North America it was. Perhaps when we get to Oceania we'll change our minds (!) I suspect that Matthew's main reason for wanting Hawaii is that he was hoping to have some pineapple. I'm quite allergic but the kids said they would be super careful and the store has some pre-cut so we bought some.


After researching some Hawaiian food options, we decided the most practical recipe idea was to make a poke bowl. Everyone enjoyed it very much.

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