Monday, October 21, 2013

Toronto the Good Times

I have a hard time telling Henry what I do for work.  

"Mummy works in an office.  I sit at a desk, write messages into the computer, talk on the phone, go to meetings, and write more messages."  I hope he thinks that is very cool and inspiring.  

It is also pointed out to him that by doing this work, we have money to buy Mr. Men books and ice cream.

So life is pretty good.

I stayed late at work on Wednesday and took the liberty to walk up Bay Street to City Hall to see the Ai Weiwei installation that was still there after Nuit Blanche, and I took some pictures along the way.

"The sheer quantity of bikes and the diverse perceptions of viewing points create a colossal labyrinth-like, visually moving space, which represents the changing social environment in China and around the globe."

The Bay St. office tower where I work, on the 4th floor mind you.
Bay Street, walking north towards Old City Hall.

New City Hall 

Ai Weiwei installation for Nuit Blanche

Toronto architectural melange

Melange II

I thought I was smiling.

Over the weekend, I had Henry pretty much to myself both days.  So we braved the chilly air and lack of public transit (b/c of marathon) to visit the Distillery District.  Henry tried a caramel chocolate at Soma, and watched some chocolate discs be decorated with nuts.  We walked around, saw old farm trucks, interesting sculptures, bought a toy at Bergo, marvelled at the awesome novelties there, and had a coffee and banana bread in a very artsy and sophisticated coffee shop.  Fun and exhausting morning, and the boy still didn't nap in the afternoon.  I have a feeling the naps are starting to wane. But not if I can help it!

He savoured every bite.  But still likes lollipops better.

"Mummy what is this?"  "A thing to climb on!"

"Just change this, add an extra layer, and I'll approve this design."

Little Helper has been asking to make pumpkin muffins.  I used canned puree and cheated.
For all those curious.

Sunday was brunch at Aunt V and Uncle T.  They served all his favourite foods!

Family resemblance?

Henry can now identify the letters H, O and sometimes S, T and C.  Does that spell Scotch?  OMG.  He's also learning simple addition.  If you ask him what's one plus one, he'll say 2.  What's 3 plus 1, there's a bit more of a pause, but often he'll come up with 4.  

While I'm proud of his learning, my sharing this has more to do with how much in awe I am of how people work.  How we are born with the desire and ability to learn.  And how complex and lengthy the learning process is in order to be a typical adult.  

For the next little while I think it's settling into winter, wrapping up the year, preparing for the next one.  But, we'll see what comes our way.

Monday, October 14, 2013

click click click

click click click

The roller coaster has shifted gears and after the initial white-knuckled anticipation and wild descent, the machine clicks clicks into the next gear, a series of less dramatic twists and turns that feels actually quite fun.

Thanksgiving just clicked away and we're on course for Halloween and Christmas.

Let's narrate through pictures:

Henry has finally adapted to the Senior room.  He has been naughty of late pushing other children and not listening.   We're doing our best to navigate the love and understanding vs. the discipline.

Last week for the first time in over 2 1/2 years, Henry had to sleep without Mr. Pickles.  The new room keeps the sleep toys in a bucket inside the room and they don't always make their way back to the cubbies in the afternoon.  So when I picked Henry up and was told he was pushing and misbehaving, I became too distracted to remember to go inside the room and retrieve his friends.  Putting Henry to sleep was fine, but when he woke up in the middle of the night, he cried and screamed the most pitiful and sorrowful cry for an hour and a half.

Stephen texted me the following morning to report that their reunion in the Senior Room was "magical."

Market Days of pizza, ice cream and buying fresh produce have come to an end.  We will be re-introducing library days starting this week.

Henry is now an Animal Rescuer, a la Dora the Explorer and Diego.  He takes very good care of his pet cat Luther (most of the time), and here he's reading Luther a story for breakfast, which is something Henry loves for us to do for him.

Henry's Room I

Henry's Room II

Henry's Room III

Henry's Room IV

Henry's Room V

Henry's Room VI

Housewarming party--probably the last BBQ of the year

Dinner in the diner, nothing could be finer.

Animal Rescuer tempts fate.

Finally big enough to push the wheels of the trike by himself!

Finally not scared of his 2nd birthday toy the remote-control firetruck.

Thanksgiving  Autumn Harvest Pumpkin

Quiet holiday weekend at home, brings smiles all around.

Animal Rescuer is certainly not above manual labour.

And me?  I've joined a gym, am enjoying choir, trying to get the house organized, trying to keep up with emails, blogs, hoping to organize a babysitter for November so Stephen & I can see a play together.  Bracing for the rain and cold toes.  Already planning for Christmas.  Trying out new recipes, baking too much.

I'm very excited that Alice Munro won a Nobel Prize.  My father gave me Dance of the Happy Shades when I was 14 years old.  I did a book report on it, and so started my love for her writing which, like her writing has unwavered.

It seems that it's taken three years for us as a family of three to find our groove.  If there's one thing I'm particularly thankful for this year, it's that we have clicked and are enjoying our precious time together.