Saturday, August 22, 2009

Family Photo

Have you ever tried to take a photo of six people and get them all looking the same way, and all smiling? I thought you might be amused at a recent attempt to get a picture of our family! In the later ones, David and I are smiling through gritted teeth in a desparate attempt not to break out laughing!

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Miss Simplicity

A friend of mine has started a new blog: her mission, to simplify her home. You can see how she does, or work along with her at:
Miss Simplicity.

Sunday, August 16, 2009

"Staycation" - Toronto!

It seems to be the hip thing to "staycation" these days. Due to a variety of circumstances, we found ourselves needing to stay fairly close to home (alas - not three days in to the interior of a wilderness park) so we decided to head to Granny and Granddad's B&B in Toronto!

One highlight of the visit was the trip to the Toronto Islands. Now the strike is over, the ferries are running again! (And the grass in the park is being mowed, and the garbage cans are being emptied....) We put some bicycles on the back of the van, and parked near the ferry terminal, and then boarded the ferry!

It is a short ride to the islands. We took the ferry to Centre Island, which has lovely gardens, fountains, a beach and good picnic areas. It also has Franklin's Garden where you can find a statue of Franklin the turtle:

And Bear:

And many of the other Franklin characters! There is also a discovery garden which when we visited was staffed by a group of young women who were very relieved to have their summer jobs start up, and were also feeling a little bored because it was a very quiet day for them. They helped the children make a craft and showed them some neat plants and insects.

The outing earned the coveted "two thumbs and two big toes up" from the children!

Monday, August 10, 2009

Fresh Air Fund Visit

We participated with the Fresh Air Fund again this year and hosted a 9 year old girl from Queens, New York city for 2 weeks in July. Her name was Janelle, and we had a good time with her.

We did a lot of activities while she was here, including a Fresh Air Fund picnic where the girls had their faces painted:

bicycle riding, swimming lessons, Niagara Falls (and the Maid of the Mist), cheese factory tour, Port Dalhousie....

Here we are at Queenston Heights:

But I think some of the best times of all were while we were at home. Emmi enjoyed having another girl around to play with and also learned some new clapping games.

One of the great satisfactions for me was to see Janelle become engrossed in a book. She picked up Charlotte's Web sometime in her second week, and was determined to finish it before she went home. She did, on the last night! We sent her home with Stuart Little, and the hopes that she will continue to enjoy reading as much as she did while she was here with us!

Thursday, August 6, 2009


It is raspberry season! I haven't made raspberry jam for a while, and it is one of my favourite jams, so I thought this year I would try hard to get some berries and make some jam! There were a couple of scheduled visits to the berry farm that got cancelled (too busy, too rainy!!) so when Grandma called and asked to come and see us, I thought raspberry picking would be a perfect activity!

The skies were darkening as we arrived at the farm, but it didn't start raining until we were out in the field. At first it was a gentle, drizzly rain, but then I heard a strange sound. I realized it was the sound of heavy rain drumming on the tin roof of a large shed on the other side of the field. And just after I realized that, the rain started pelting down on us!

Grandma was a good sport and helped us finish picking enough berries so we could make jam. The children worked well, but got too cold, so we set them to running up and down the rows while we finished. We were all grateful for the heating in Grandma's car (we had the air-conditioning on during the drive to the farm!), and also that we had our towels in the back, our next scheduled stop was for a swim!
However, there are now jars of raspberry jam in the pantry, and we also got a batch of homemade raspberry ice-cream out of the deal!

Sunday, August 2, 2009


We've been enjoying lettuce and beans for a while now, but we recently got to harvest some corn! The corn did better for us this year than last, and we look forward to at least one more supper with Port Robinson local corn!

Here are some of the harvesters in the "field".

The pot of water was boiling as they husked the corn! It was very yummy!

Graduation Speech

We had a graduation for our homeschool group in June. The speaker was excellent!! (It was David!) He's put a transcipt of his speech on his blog, 15:14 for six if you're interested in reading it!