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April 30, 2004

The 11th Hour

This week has been busy. I am completely exhausted. And yet, I look around and feel as though I've accomplished very little.

No, wait. I did just finish preparing our taxes. But then again, I wasn't able to transmit them because we moved and didn't report our address change to the CCRA. Luckily, neither one of us owe anything so no need to rush for the midnight deadline. But I guess that means I'm back to accomplishing nothing.

On one hand I find it a little disappointing that my refund is $2.60 and on the other, I'm happy that I've had my money all year along, rather than the government. Still, there's something uplifting about receiving that refund cheque in the spring...

Posted by penny at 11:20 PM in Rants, Rants, Rants | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

April 29, 2004

ABC 123

Here's something all parents love...FREEBIES!

The best part is that they are educational freebies.

Baby Bumblebee is a great site, full of educational tools for infants and toddlers. I have yet to print them off myself but when I can get Oliver to sit still for a minute, he enjoys watching them pop up on the computer screen.

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April 28, 2004

Greetings from San Francisco!

Ella's new word of the week: Whoa! This is what we've been saying every time the minivan gets a little air while travelling down one of the steep streets of San Francisco.

Yes, we've been having a fabulous time vacationing with our friends Chris and Lu, who live in an old Victorian house in Lower Pacific Heights near Japan town. So far, we've seen the Golden Gate Bridge, eaten lunch in Sausalito, and walked through Chinatown and Little Italy. Today we spent the morning pampering ourselves (a manicure and pedicure), we went on a tour of Alcatraz, and then we had some amazing Moroccan food at a restaurant called Aziza. Tomorrow we're going to see a baseball game, and we'll be heading to Monterey and the Napa Valley on the weekend.

The other day, we tried to do a little exploring in North Beach--when Ella had a freak out. She's getting in 6 new teeth (4 of which are molars), and her gums have started bleeding again. Poor thing! Nonetheless, she's been enjoying all the attention she's getting from her aunties and uncles, and she's endured the strange surroundings, the hot weather, and an ant infestation with good humour.

I'm exhausted from all of the sightseeing and eating that we've been doing, but feeling wonderful. This city gives off a good vibe. I think we'll be coming back...soon.

Posted by tomi at 11:12 PM in All Work and No Play... | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

April 27, 2004

Where I'm Not


Posted by penny at 08:44 PM in Rants, Rants, Rants | Permalink | Comments (3) | TrackBack

April 26, 2004

Gas Wars

These gas wars are out of control!

I must have passed 4 gas stations selling at 80.9 on my way home today. Given that Superstore is 5 minutes from my house, I figured I would just head straight there. You usually get the lowest price and the bonus coupon of 3.5 cents per litre for groceries. Of course, Oliver blew a gasket a block before we got there...so much for "cheap" gas today.

As luck would have it, Ollie needed a couple of food items for the week so off to Superstore I went. Superstore is about the only place that almost hides their gas prices so all I could see was the Chevron across the street at 92.9! Outrageous! Imagine my surprise to find Superstore lagging behind at 80.9 and NO LINE-UP! Listen to me, getting excited about gas at 80.9! I can't even remember the last time it was below 70.

So, if gas prices get you all riled up, check out GasTips.com to find the lowest prices in Greater Vancouver. I also heard a tip on the radio today - when gas prices skyrocket, buying only 5 or 10 dollars when you need to forces the stations to lower the price to keep sales up.

Posted by penny at 10:38 PM in Rants, Rants, Rants | Permalink | Comments (2) | TrackBack

April 25, 2004

A Walk in the Park

If you're ever stuck for an idea to entertain your child...take a walk in the park. If there's one thing that will kick Oliver out of a funk, it's a walk in the park. Or around the block. Or the front yard. Really, I could just stick him in front of a window.

Birds make him caw. Dogs make him woof. Plants have no hope for survial. Ants, not a chance. He sees the birds and airplanes before we do. The rain and wind make him giggle with delight.

We spent a wonderful afternoon in the park both days this weekend. Yesterday, was a long visit with the other Milk Factory moms, dads and kids. The kids still play so well together after so much time apart (and missed naps!). It was hard not to long for the days spent walking and talking and feeding and playing.

I wish there was more time in a weekend...5 more days would be just about right! It goes by much too fast.

What do you do with your children on the weekend?

Posted by penny at 09:51 PM in All Work and No Play... | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack

April 24, 2004

Did You Know?

Ringworm is not a worm--it's a type of fungus. If it affects the feet, it's known as "athlete's foot". If you have ringworm (for instance, on your arm), you may have a round, itchy patch of dry skin that looks like eczema.

You can get ringworm from direct contact with an infected person or a pet. You can also get ringworm by touching objects or surfaces that an infected person or pet has touched, such as hats, combs, brushes, bed linens, stuffed animals, telephones, gym mats, and shower stalls.

Please don't ask me why I know all of this, or why I've been washing my hands compulsively for the last week and a half...

Posted by tomi at 11:34 PM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

April 23, 2004

Worth Every Penny

FINALLY! Last Thursday evening, I spent a bit of time picking out photos to send to Photolab (Superstore's online digital photo processing site). I've heard many people complain that it takes a lot of time to upload your files to online sites...some prefer taking a CD to a photofinisher instead.

I found that it took more time for me to relive each photo we've taken, than it did to upload. I had no idea that having a child would make me so emotional about the littlest things!

It only took a week and for $0.25 a photo, I say it was well worth it. It's great having pictures on your computer but there's nothing like having a "brag" book to carry around!

Posted by penny at 10:37 PM in All Work and No Play... | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

April 21, 2004

Annica ("This Too Shall Pass")

I'm feeling a little blue today, mostly likely because I'm just getting over the stomach flu... but who knows. Yesterday, I must have looked particularly miserable because my choir director kept giving me her "Are you okay?" look. She then made me lie down on the floor so that the rest of the choir could sing a "peace song" to me--or rather, over me--in hopes that this would help me feel better. And it did.

Peace and compassion. It was fitting that someone in the choir had just seen the Dalai Lama speak at UBC. And perhaps it was a sign that my aunt just emailed me some pictures of my father, who I haven't spoken to in over a year.

I know that I should try harder to find peace within myself and peace with others--but this is no simple task. A friend has recommended that I try Vipassana meditation, which is an ancient technique that was developed by the Buddha himself. This friend went on an "absolutely brutal, but incredible" 10-day retreat. Here's a short description of the retreat:

Vipassana, the art of living, is not a religion, cult nor a sect. It's a meditation technique learned in a ten-day retreat. Actually, it's more attack than retreat, an all-out assault on your worst fears, hatreds, and addictions. An unloading of the heaviest complexes, acquired in this life and previous ones, that are keeping you from being a loving, happy, and compassionate being.
So it's not exactly Club Med...but I'll take love, peace, and happiness over swim-up bars and fake smiles any day!

Posted by tomi at 11:40 PM | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack

April 20, 2004

My First Crayons

Ollie had his first chew on his first crayons tonight. He seemed quite proud of himself for some reason. Maybe it was the way I responded..."Eeewwwwwwww! Ollie! Yuckers!". That just made him giggle more - black teeth and all. Do you know how hard it is to get wax crayon out of a one year old's mouth?!

Wasn't it smart of Crayola to make the crayons non-toxic ;o)

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