Last night, Adam had a late 3 on 3 hockey game out in Cloverdale. I think the final score was 19-14 for our guys...so much scoring!
Today I drove to Centennial Theatre in North Van to watch Ainsley's dance recital. Today she had two dances - jazz and hiphop. Its been a couple of years since I've been to one of her shows and she sure has matured as a dancer. I wasn't allowed to take any photos or video :(
On the drive home I drove past the theatre (METRO) that I spent every June at for 12 years. Dress rehearsals, performances - as dancers this is what we waited all year for. When I was younger, I remember watching the older girls in awe and also walking down Marine Drive to the little old-fashioned "penny" candy store and getting little bags of candy. As I got older, the whole thing became more of a social scene, hanging out with other dancers backstage and in the seats during rehearsals and also having long talks out back near the railroad tracks. The dancers were definitely our own little family and a part of my life I look back on with great fondness. I had always assumed that one day I would have my own little girl in dance and although the boys are happy to do artsy projects and bake with me, dance lessons are where they draw the line!
Years ago, my mom put together a scrapbook of photos from my childhood. These are some dance photos from when I was Ainsley's age - 12. I remember waiting with anticipation each year to see what kind of costumes we would be wearing! Betty Tufts Dance Studio went all out with a full theatrical production (sometimes a bit whacky!) with sets and special effects for the first half of the show and then a collection of dance routines for the second half. Dance companies now seem to go for a much more subtle approach ;)
First photo - I'm on the left in some sort of cat suit but I was en pointe- a big highlight for me!
Second photo - I'm second from the right - we're supposed to be Ginger Rogers and Fred Astaire! I remember practicing forever with those dolls to get our routine down!
Third photo - Tap dancing as french maids of some sort! I think that's me second from the right again.
Today was the last day of Colin's robotics program and we all worked together last night to make some cupcakes to take for the group today. We made chocolate cupcakes with yummy homemade frosting which we piped on top. We then made little paper robot lollipops to top them. Very cute I think!
When I dropped Colin off this morning he got right to work making adjustments to his robot. Adam has this LEGO NXT robotics set and he has pulled it out this week and has been reacquainted with it ;)
Colin had a great time and learned a lot. He was pretty tired - lots of brainwork! I was proud of him during their presentation this afternoon - he spoke so confidently in front of the group of students and parents and handled his demonstrations with his robot well. Somehow he acquired the nickname Captain Colin or Captain Kamide! He had two great teachers (thanks Carole and Rosamar!) and we are so glad he had the opportunity to have this experience.
After dropping Colin off at robotics and getting my posting applications in, I was home for awhile this afternoon. I looked out the window and saw a very big squirrel on our deck and then eating something from our lawn. Adam left out lots of sunflower seeds for the birds when it was a bit chilly so I am guessing the wind blew them around and the squirrel was having a feast. This guy looked right at me and didn't flinch when I opened the sliding door out on to our deck to watch him. We had two squirrels living in our attic last year so I am a little concerned this guy is so comfy in our backyard!
I tried a new snickerdoodle recipe today. Still trying to capture the perfectness of the ones we had in the Winnie the Pooh area of Disneyland years ago!
All of us like snickerdoodles though...they are in our "top 10" favourite family cookies for sure!
After dropping Colin off at a robotics program this morning, I headed out to UBC for a meeting with my advisor. This meeting was long overdue as I have really not done much towards analysis or writing since I last met with her in January. Life just seems to be getting in the way and we discussed this. It really is all about choices and at this point, I am not overly excited about the huge task that is ahead of me and frankly, it really isn't that important to me anymore. It's hard to write a 300 page dissertation when there is very little motivation to do so! Its not like I need to have it done to get the academic job I want (which was the case for many of the PhD students in my group) or that it is going to necessarily create new opportunities for me at this point in my career. I have kind of done everything I have hoped to do with my career with a little extra for good measure!
At this point, I can either just walk away from it (which Neil and I discussed last night) with really, very little regret. Or, I can just throw myself at it and see what I can get done over the summer. Although I have always said that this PhD is a selfish undertaking and that it is really just for my own personal growth and experience, I can't forget the sacrifices the boys and Neil have made, particularly in the first two years of the program. It was so crazy with coursework and proposals, grant competitions, papers for publication and conference presentations during that time. I tried to balance teaching K, the PhD, being a mom, etc and it definitely took its toll. I don't want that period in time in our lives to be in vain and for that reason alone, I think I need to give this dissertation thing a shot. As my advisor said, instead of always pushing it down on my list of priorities, I need to let it rise up a little higher for awhile and see what I can do. Lots to think about!
On the way back from UBC, I stopped by Butter to pick up some treats for dessert for this evening and to get a couple of "smarty pants" bars for the two teachers doing Colin's program.
I first found Butter when I was looking for "homemade" marshmallows and also discovered they made their own graham crackers and smores (which are a Kamide favourite). Butter smells just like a bakery should and I just love the aesthetic of it - pure delight for my senses!
1) We headed to Granville Island today. A fun treat-filled day for the boys and a great photo day for me!
2) The first stop (of course) was Kids Only Market. I have loved
this place since pre-kids times. I used to teach preschool and primary classes and always found interesting,unique toys and books down there. We've been taking the boys there since they were little and they have their favourite stores they like to go to - Kaboodles, The Knotty Store and the Granville Island Toy Company. In the last couple of years, they have also enjoyed the magic store upstairs. I found a couple of little tops to add to my collection and the boys each found a few little things. Just beware of Colin if he ever offers you a mint from a can that looks like a snake might fit into it ;)
3) We headed over to the market and wandered around taking in all the sights and smells before we had lunch.
4) The boys had their lunch and then we all shared a huge strawberry crepe for dessert! Yum-o!
5) They were filming an episode of The Shopping Bags right near where we were sitting for lunch. Not sure exactly what they were reviewing or testing. I have seen their show a few times on the W Network- the ones when they were testing different cookbooks by preparing a meal from them were quite funny!
6) We picked up some rustic tarts and the yummiest blueberry bread from Terra Breads to bring home to have for dessert. I had the blueberry (and white chocolate) bread at a meeting at UBC last year and have been craving it since!
7) It was sprinkling a bit when we went for a walk outside but it didn't bother the boys. The went into a hammock place (like one we visited in San Diego) and tried out these fun individual hammock swings. I think they are both putting them on their birthday wish lists! We hopped on one of the little water ferries and went across to English Bay to walk along the beach.
8) While we were over near English Bay, we got up close and personal with an art installation called We 2008. It is a human form made out of all sorts of symbols and letters from different languages. We found lots of Japanese kanji, some Greek letters and the boys' initials.
9) Back on Granville Island, the boys got some ice cream and gelato and then we visited the french bakery. Our baguette boy, Colin, chose a baguette to have with dinner and I decided to have a raspberry macaron. I have been seeing these on all the foodie blogs that I visit. All three of us shared one...so good.
Macarons are definitely on my list of things to try and make myself! Bakerella has step by step photos on her blog and then of course, she also made macaron-pops out of them! Her cake pop book is coming out this fall! Bakerella took a class with Tartelette who has great recipes and photos on her site (check out her recipe index!).
10) Granville Island is a great place to take photos! The colours and setting are amazing. The boys humored me as we walked to our car and let me take a couple of photos after I squealed about the "cool texture" of the building behind them ;)
I just hung out at home for most of the day today. My sister came over to work on a project for my nephew's 10th birthday and we had lots of time to talk and get all caught up. Even though she lives less than an hour away, with the busy schedules our kids have, we actually don't see each other that often.
Adam was doing his first "mall trip with friends" today. This is a new thing for us...some of the girls in his class wanted him and his friends to look for something to wear for their grade 7 "grad". Oh my. Adam decided he needed a wallet and in true Adam style, he decided to make one out of duct tape. It has a change compartment and pockets for his cards and everything. Such a clever guy!
While Adam was gone, Colin had a friend over and then they went swimming at Steveston Pool. We joined Glenn and Grandpa for dinner and Colin showed off his climbing skills...he's always been such a monkey!
The boys are laughing out loud right now as they watch this crazy show called WipeOut. It looks like it's based on one of those crazy Japanese game shows. The boys have another day "off" tomorrow because of a pro-d day and I was lucky to get my schedule organized so could be home with them. Four day weekends really feel like a mini-holiday!
Colin was back at the provincial fencing championships today. He just started sabre in January and this was his first competition. He was in the Y12 division ( 12 and under) as they didn't have a Y10 for sabre. Colin didn't have any expectations for this event which was good! He didn't win any of his bouts but some were very close and he was able to score points against all the other competitors which he was happy about. I think he has realized that he's not really ready for this level of competition yet - he still has lots to learn! Regardless, we are very proud of him for trying new things and extending himself!
Fencing is a great sport for all ages. Dynamo has beginners classes for adults and for children as young as 4. For more info, check out their website at www.dynamofencing.com!
We were only at the event for an hour today compared to over 4 hours yesterday so we still had lots of the afternoon left so we headed to the first day of the Steveston Market. The boys got lemonade and kettlecorn as a treat and we just walked around - lots of jewellery and soap like last year! After, the boys went swimming in Steveston Pool which also opened this weekend.
We are so very proud of Colin! He began his first event (Y10 Foil) at the provincials with a bit of nervousness. This was only his second competition and he didn't know what to expect. He had a huge cheering section-Neil, Adam and I along with Tamara and Duncan and Glenn and Grandpa! He won three matches in the round robin and then won his best out of 3 matches in the first round of the seeded eliminations. He lost in the semi-finals but fought really hard. He was so thrilled to receive a bronze medal!
We stayed for the medal ceremonies (of course!) and it was so nice to see Colin so genuinely proud and happy! He was also happy his friend Quinn from fencing won the gold medal in this division. We are all learning so much about fencing and are still trying to figure out the scoring system and what counts/what doesn't, who has "preference" or "priority", etc. It's a whole new world. I think someone needs to publish a little fencing handbook for parents!
We quite love the Dynamo Fencing Club. Who knew this was going to become such an important part of Colin's life when he and Trevor began fencing there in September 2008 - they were just going to try it out! The coaches and families at the club are all so very supportive of beginners like Colin.
Included below is a little video of the afternoon's events. Colin had 7 round-robin matches (3 minutes each or 5 points to win) and then he had 5 elimination round matches.