Tag Archives: E1

Daddy has the Magic Touch

We were just starting our drive home from our regular Sunday dinner at grandma’s and grandpa’s house.

E1: “Do you think we’ll get stopped at Hood Road again this time?”

Our route home takes us through the intersection of Denison and Hood Road, and it feels like we get faced with a red light 95% of the times we pass through going west-bound. It is particularly frustrating because A)it is approximately 100 meters from another set of traffic lights at Warden; B) it always seems to turn red seconds after the lights at Warden turn green, giving you the initial false hopes that you can pass through; and C)stays red for an inordinate amount of time, especially considering at 9pm on Sundays there is zero traffic driving on Hood Road. I had made enough comments and complaints about it on our drives home that E1 and E2 both knew the location and to look for the light.

Denison_and_Hood_Road

This week was one of those odd occasions where T was driving. I pulled my neck a few days earlier and couldn’t really turn my head well, so we all agreed it was safest to have T drive.

Me: “Well, we can only wait and see when we get there. Daddy does seem to have better success at getting through Hood Road without getting a red light though. I always seem to get stopped.”

T: “Probably because you drive way more than I do.” I laughed.

E1: “Well Mommy, I remember on Thanksgiving you got a green light.”

Me: “True, but that’s like the only time I remember.”

E1: “Daddy must have the magic touch.”

T, chuckling: “People have been saying that about me for years.”

E2: “So why does Daddy still get stopped sometimes with the red light there?”

Me: “His magic for Hood Road must be depleted and I guess it takes a while before it gets replenished.”

T: “That’s called mana. My mana must be depleted each time I get through Hood Road without a red light. You guys know what mana is?”

E1: “Yeah! Like the magic in our Magic Quest wands. Before we got them activated again, it kept saying to us ‘Your wand’s mana has been depleted’ when we tried to use the wands at Great Wolf Lodge.”

E2: “What does ‘depleted’ mean?”

Me: “Depleted means used up, drained, finished.”

E1: “Ahh, I don’t talk about it right now, or else Daddy’s magic will go away!”

T: “That’s called, ‘Jinxing’ it.”

We drive along Denison and get stopped at the red light on Warden Ave behind several cars, one light away from the infamous light.

E1 cranes her head to check out the Hood Road light situation. “Oh no! The light is green! That means it’s probably going to turn red by the time we get there again!”

E2: “Oh no oh no oh no!”

The light at Warden turns green and we drive the 100 meters towards Hood Road. Amazingly, the light stays green.

Me: “Oh my gosh guys! We’re going to make it through Hood Road! The light is staying green!”

All in the car: “Yaaayy!”

E2: “Daddy really *does* have the magic touch!”

~Jen

Nostalgia for some books of my childhood

I recently finished rereading Anne of Green Gables. It is E1’s copy of the book we gave her for Christmas, and when I read the first few chapters aloud to her, I got hooked again. In the evenings, as she slept, I borrowed the book to read furtively onward. A smile was likely on my face the whole way through to the end, delighted with the character of Anne and the “scrapes” she got herself into.

It’s also delightful seeing E1 also getting taken up in not only the characters and the story of Anne of Green Gables, but of many of the books she’s reading. I look at her and I see myself at her age. I am nostalgic for the books of my childhood and early teens, and for how they made me feel, the childhood memories they invoke, or the lessons I still keep from them. Here are some of them. (Unfortunately, I am terrible at remembering plot details or character names, so please don’t expect a synopsis of these books!) Continue reading Nostalgia for some books of my childhood

E1- a budding Sherlock Holmes in the house

The days of me thinking that I can fool my girls is clearly in the past now. Here’s a story about E1 – a budding Sherlock Holmes in the house.


Me: “Ooh, girls. I got a text from Daddy and I think Daddy is going to come home with a surprise. I bet you’ll never guess what it is.”

E1: “Oh! Is it another bike?”

Me (chuckling): “No, it’s not another bike. But considering the past few weeks, that’s an excellent guess.” (In reference to the one day at the beginning of November where we came home to find that he has bought a new road bike for himself, and then picked up two girls bikes that were sitting on the curb in the neighbourhood with a “Free” sign on them.)

E2: “Is it dinner?”

Me: “Hmm. Another good guess, especially since we are getting hungry. But no, that’s not it.”

E1: “New winter boots for us?”

Me: “Hmm, we do need to get you those. Sorry that’s not it either. I’m telling you, you’ll never guess what it is.”

The girls kept guessing during the walk home. They were unsuccessful in guessing correctly, as I predicted.

We got inside the house and were taking off our shoes when E1 looks up at me with a spark in her eye. “Wait! You said that Daddy texted you. I can go upstairs and look on the tablet to see what Daddy said to you.” She took off up the stairs. A minute later I hear her talking to E2. “Oh! I think Daddy got a new car!”

Me and E2: “Whaaaaaaaat?” We were shocked for different reasons.

E1: “Yeah, Daddy wrote something about a Lexus, and I think that’s a type of car.”

Me: “Yes…uh, you got it, sweetie! How, um, did you figure it all out?”

E1: “Well, I remember sometimes when we’re on the tablet watching Netflix or playing a game, i sometimes  see the messages you and Daddy send to each other on Hangout. So I tried to find it.”


This kid blows my mind. Critical thinking skills = +20. Thinking back, I look all the pieces of information she assembled in that 7-year old brain of hers:

  1. Realized guessing blindly was not getting her anywhere, so she thought of an alternative method to get more clues.
  2. Picked up during our conversation the information that Daddy sent me a text message
  3. Remembered that she has seen our text messages on the tablets at home, in addition to our phones
  4. Remembered the name of the app that holds our messages, and how to find it on the tablet.
  5. Somehow remembered that Lexus is a manufacturer of cars, even though noone in our family, or our extended family, owns one (until now, that is).

So she’s on a good track to becoming a world-renowned  consulting detective, right? Or a super spy? I just hope she uses her powers for good, and not evil.

~Jen

Parenting is hard: when to allow our kids to have mobile phones

As I write this, E1 is 7 years old and E2 is 5 years old. Yes, definitely too young to be having mobile phones, but these rascals grow so quickly! It seems like yesterday they were still doll-sized, so I just know they’ll be pre-teens in a blink of an eye. And wanting their own mobile phones. So to avoid having to respond in a wild-eyed, unprepared and panicked manner, I think we gotta plan now for when to allow our kids to have mobile phones. (*ugh*)

I definitely think anytime before they are in Grade 7 is too early. But after they are going to middle school and extra-curricular activities by themselves? I don’t think that age alone should be the determining factor. Hence this haphazard plan below.

I don’t profess to have a grand manifesto that I’ve been planning for ages. These are just some of the random ideas and “risk mitigation strategies” that have been floating around my head lately. Maybe I’ll add to this list or take things away as the years pass. Definitely this post will be updated as things change. Looking at this list below, the daughters are going to have to do a lot of work to convince me! That might be enough to discourage it for a few years. But who knows, i’m writing this now in 2015 without knowing what the social and technological environment will be like when they are 13 years old. I’ll try not to be too hard on myself if this current best-laid plan doesn’t work out. Continue reading Parenting is hard: when to allow our kids to have mobile phones

Little joys: May 2015

I think I need a little reminder of some the little joys I’ve experienced this month. More than just the smiles and amusements from things in my FB feed. It’s a balm against the negative news, fear and frustrating experiences I’ve encountered in the last few weeks. It’s something Janice had me do during our sessions together, to just explicitly and deliberately recognize the good things in life. It’s a habit I’m trying to get ingrained into doing, instead of always focusing on trying to fix the negative and problems at hand. So here goes. Continue reading Little joys: May 2015

Scene from a household: If T was a dance costume designer

E1:”Guess what our dance costume is this year! ”

All across the dance-studio land, dancers and teachers are gearing up for the end-of-year recitals. The girls’ studio was no different.

T takes a pen and starts sketching on some paper. :”A hamburger! “ dance_costume_sketch_burger

E2: “Noooo! It is a circus theme!”

E1:”I’ll give you a hint. I’m an animal.”

T: “Hmm, ok, I got this.” He draws some more. “Are you a giant squid?”dance_costume_sketch_squid

E1: “That’s not a circus animal! Squid live in the oceans. Be serious Daddy.”

He sketches a new costume. “I know this is a circus animal, am I close?”dance_costume_sketch_dog

E1: “No! The animal I am is a big cat.”

T: “OK, I got this then!” He draws some more. “A big cat! And look, I gave you a nice fish accessory too.” dance_costume_sketch_catThe girls whine their protests about it not being right, all the while trying to suppress some giggles. I am outright Laughing Out Loud.

T: “Ooh, is your dance a jazz number? I add this top hat to the costume, that’s very jazzy.”

I mean, *that’s* entertainment. Who wouldn’t be entertained by a group of 12 dancers prancing around on stage in this getup?

~Jen

Parenting is hard: sibling jealousy

I’ve been noticing in the last few months that E1 has been taunting her sister more and more, or doing things just to bother her. Putting her foot on E2’s chair. Purposefully taking up more space so there is no room for E2. Belittling things or accomplishments that E2 wanted to share with the family. They still had lots of moments where they got along great and have fun together, but the ratio was starting to to the other way.

I decided to address it at our family meeting this week. Continue reading Parenting is hard: sibling jealousy

Parenting is hard: sex talks

“Mommy, how does your body know when you are married so you can make a baby?”

This is the question posed to me last night by my elder daughter, E1.

Me: “Um, that’s not how a baby gets made.”

E1: (still continuing on the train of thought that babies are spontaneously made in mommy’s belly upon marriage) “And then how does the baby get parts of the Daddy in it? Like some of his looks, or personality?” Her face was pondering this question. Continue reading Parenting is hard: sex talks

Santa skeptic in the house

“I don’t think Santa Claus is real. I think it’s just you and Daddy sneaking to the tree after we fall asleep and putting the presents there.”

These were the words uttered out of my 6-year-old‘s mouth yesterday evening. Continue reading Santa skeptic in the house

DIY Snowy Owl costume – success!

The Backstory
How to DIY Sew my Snowy Owl Costume

Continue reading DIY Snowy Owl costume – success!