Monday, May 30, 2011


We took a trip to Marineland last week with our local homeschool group and had a great time!

Emmi set herself a goal to ride every single ride at Marineland - and she suceeded! (A little disclaimer - one ride was closed, so she didn't ride that one, but she rode every other one, some multiple times!) As you can see, she enjoys rides!

Tim was able to hang out with a good friend who has similar tastes in rides, they did crazy things like ride certain spinny rides 6 times back-to-back-to-back-to ... whoops - got a little disoriented there!

However, it is Ben who gets the award for most multiple trips on a single ride. He and a friend (pictured below) rode this Orca Screamer (a smaller version of the Sky Screamer) 30 times! Then Ben came back and did it twice more by himself! 32 rides! Each ride drops you down 10 times - 320 drops! I am fortunate that his scrambled brains still seem able to handle his math!

This is what you see from the ground once the Orca Screamer gets going. Then it drops them down, lifts up and spins, and repeats, nine more times.

Pip had a lovely time riding with all sorts of friends and relations. He tried the grown-up roller coaster, but found this kiddie coaster to be more his speed!

We have seasons passes now, so we will be heading back at some point. I'm not sure if the records we set will stand, or if there will be some work to break them!

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

She's a good one to have in the family

I was pretty proud of my girl recently - she baked her first pie! She made the pastry, rolled it out, stirred up the filling, put it all together and baked it. The only things I did were help peel and cut the apples, and give general advice from time to time. (The photo above shows a detail where she cut her name into the crust as steam vents. It's hard to see - but I thought it was neat, signing your work like an artist!)

The pie smelled great in the oven, and it tasted pretty wonderful. The boys were impressed. They know having a sister is good, but it might be great.

Friday, May 13, 2011

Paradise for Boys (and a Girl)

"There is nothing--absolutely nothing - half so much worth doing as simply messing about in boats."- Kenneth Grahame, The Wind in the Willows, Ch. 1

We spent a great afternoon with some friends! Our friends are a family of 4 boys, about the same ages as our children, their parents, auntie and grandparents. The grandparents live on a large piece of land with a creek running through it, and the boys built a raft.

Here is the raft waiting to go in the creek:

Almost there!

The crowd waiting for the first trip of the raft to the bridge.

Emmi is a monkey!

The afternoon was warm, and this is what ended up happening to the boots:

What's she got in her hands?

Look closely - can you see the frog?

We came home pretty muddy, but thankful for good friends, and the chance to enjoy and explore God's exciting creation.

Sunday, May 8, 2011

Marshwiggle Minifigs

For those of you not so immersed in Lego as we are, the term Minifig is short for mini-figure, and it refers to the small (mini) men (figures) made by Lego. They make all sorts! Some are from movies, like the Star Wars series, and some are more generic, like policemen or knights. While David was away, he was able to visit a extensive Lego store. At the store he was able to construct his own minifigs - so he decided to make a set of Marshwiggles. He was a little limited in what he could choose, so he did the best he could, and this is what he came up with:

On the left is the Daddy minifig wearing a bowtie and wielding a sword to illustrate his position in the family. The Mummy minifig is next, with glasses and long hair (a braid down the back). She is wearing an astronaut on her shirt to show her engineering background, and has binoculars to keep an eye on everyone. The Emmi minifig is wearing overalls, has long hair and has an axe to symbolize her interest in gardening. Tim's minifig is wearing a top hat because he likes to take charge, he also has a sword because he likes swordfighting. The Ben minifig is similar to a policeman, a group that Ben likes to collect in Playmobil. The last minifig is Pip who is in an orange construction suit because he like to build things. This minifig also has a determined look on his face, because Pip is a pretty determined person.

We've had a lot of fun playing with the new set of minifigs. I don't know if the Mummy minifig has taken on any storm-troopers yet, but I look forward to hearing about it.

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Democratic Marshwiggles

All you Canadians out there know we have just had a federal election. The Marshwiggles have been very interested in this election! We all watched the leader's debates on the computer, and Tim and Emmi went to our local All Candidates Meeting with David, and they all had opinions on who we should for for. Poor Tim was quite crushed to think how long he had to wait to vote!
Election Day here was cool and rainy. Our poll was very local, so we could walk to it. We took a "shortcut" on the way there that leads over a little stream. In the background you can see the ruins of the second Welland Canal.

We found an egg:

And we arrived at the Community Centre! The daffodils were out (you can see some in the background of the picture) in many gardens!

Here's a front view of our Community Centre. It's also where we come for our library.

Well, I cast my vote! The children weren't allowed to come round and watch the actual act of my marking the "x" but there were very keen to witness all the other parts of voting: handing in the voter's card, showing my ID, putting the ballot in the box, etc. etc. They were allowed to see and handle the ballot before I marked it, and go round to see the voting desk after I was done, and the little yellow pencil that was used - pretty neat stuff. We knew the polling clerk and deputy returning officer, so it was a pretty chummy time too.

We returned home the way we had come, pausing at the second Welland Canal to re-enact the battle of some Orcs with the men of Minas Tirith (Lord of the Rings).

Unfortunately, the children had to wait 'til the next day to find out who won, they went to bed before the polls closed. But I think we will have some pretty engaged voters in about 10-15 years from now!

Sunday, May 1, 2011

Daddy's French Fries

Daddy is away right now on business, but we looked through some old (last month!) photos and thought you might enjoy seeing one evening we had when he made his famous french fries!

Daddy starts with fresh potatoes. He recruited some Marshwiggles to peel them:

Then he parboils them:

Next the potatoes are drained -steamy!

Then they have to soak a bit in cool water:

Next they are deep fried in hot oil. We like to use the wok for this. This is a Daddy only job, the Marshlings are told to keep well back!

Finally, they are golden and crispy! Daddy takes them out to drain.

YUMMY!! YUMMY! They just need a little salt - they are so good, no ketchup or vinegar required!

Everyone loves their french fries! Two big toes and two thumbs up from all Marshwiggles!

So, what are you doing when you get home from your business trip Daddy??