Friday, February 26, 2010

Circle of Life

Well, you know it's gonna come. The day your child's pet enters the world beyond. Whether it's a dog, cat, fish or snake. It doesn't matter, it hurts. My daughter, Paige had her own bird, a budgie named Tango. Tango was a great companion for Paige, the only female pet we owned and she had her home in Paigey's room. She had her bird cage set up on Paige's bedside table. Every night we would read our bedtime story and then say goodnight to Tango and put her cover over her cage. Paige was happy and comforted knowing she had Tango with her throughout the night.
We told Paige time and time again that budgies don't live very long and she had to be prepared for one day when Tango would go to Heaven. That day was today. I heard an unusally loud noise coming from the cage and went in to find Tango lying on the bottom, clearly not sleeping. I went straight to my husband while Paige was curled up on the couch watching Treehouse completely unaware what was happening. Trevor quickly got the cage outside and then we had to decide how we were going to break the news to our little girl. We came to the conclusion that it would be a life lesson for her to see Tango, say goodbye and help daddy bury her in the back garden. I took a deep breath and went into the living room, turned off the T.V., got down to eye level and gently told her the news. She didn't seem too upset, but more curious at that moment. "Where was Tango?" She wanted to see her. I sent her outside to see daddy who was ready with the limp budgie in his hands. Paige had many questions, and wanted to hold Tango, "Why was she so soft?" "Why can't she lift her head?" Trevor and I answered  her questions all the while waiting for the realization to set in ~ her companion was gone.
When she was ready, Trevor took her over to the garden and let her pick the perfect spot, right beside the little garden cross we had put there to remember her Grampa. Trevor got the shovel and dug a deep hole. Pagie bent down and gently layed Tango to rest. She then stood beside her daddy holding his hand the both of them taking a moment to say a little prayer. 
Paige then turned and crushed her little face into her daddy's legs, letting out big loud sobs.....it had hit her....Tango wasn't coming back. I was watching from the window and was ready. Trevor picked her up and carried her up the back stairs and into my waiting arms. I took her to cuddle and cry and console. She would lift her head every few seconds and try to say something that really just came out in big stuttery sobs, then wrap her arms around me even tighter and cry even harder. Her big brothers came out from their bedroom, daddy came in from outside and we all sat together in the living room as a quiet strength for our shattered little girl. We all waited for her hurt to subside and answered any questions she had about life and death.
That was it, that was the first death; pet or otherwise that Paige was old enough to understand. I think we handled it pretty darn good. I'm proud of our family, I'm always so touched to see all my children gather around when there is a family member that needs them. Paige recovered  and learned a valuable life lesson, one that she will have to endure many more times.
Of course it didn't hurt that daddy promptly took her out to the pet store and came home with Courtney....Paige's new hamster!!


Paigey & her Tango.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Beautiful Whistler, B.C.

Whistler Mountain is famous for it's natural beauty. It represents the great outdoors and what B.C. is well known for. Even if you don't go to ski, there is still so much to experience. I for one have no longing to "hit the slopes". I did my fair share of skiing in my younger years and at this point in my life don't feel the need for speed-ing down huge slippery mountain sides. I leave that to my kids.
We decided that this past weekend; to take in Olympic history in the making, and enjoy other adventures besides skiing, or in my boys case...snowboarding.
One of the most beautiful walks you can take while in Whistler is along the Village Trail. It's a beautiful pathway that goes from the Creekside part of Whistler to the main village. You walk past stunning natural scenery around every corner. The colors are amazing and the air is so fresh. My three kids just couldn't stay on the path layed out in front of them, what fun is that. Instead they climbed and jumped and investigated every nook and cranny to either side of the path!
I was behind them all the way with my camera just a clickin' You can't beat the backdrop Mother Nature provides. Enjoy life....








Monday, February 15, 2010

Small World...

This past weekend my husband and I were fortunate enough to take the kids up to beautiful Whistler, B.C. This is always a great place to escape to for the weekend at anytime, however, this weekend was the opening weekend of the Winter Olympics. You would pretty much have to live under a rock, if you reside in Vancouver and don't know we are hosting the 2010 Olypmics.
This is a HUGE deal, our city has been turned upside down in our efforts to Welcome the World. Streets are closed off, transit is chaos, and security is beefed up ~ majorly. So much so, that we were not allowed to drive our vehicle into Whistler Village. There was bus after bus that would swoosh by and pick everyone up every 5 minutes. There would be a crowd of people waiting for every bus, and everyday the crowds were getting bigger!
We are no strangers to Whistler, my parents have owned a condo there from the time I was a little girl. We are used to seeing and hearing the different languages and cultures that come to visit the mountain. However, I was not prepared for something that overwhelmed me on the bus rides to and from the Village. The World......the whole world was on our bus. I mean there was so many different languages being spoken on our little bus. So many different styles, so many different cultures. I just sat there and listened, amazed.  
And on that bus ride with everyone from all over the world, there was a buzz, we all had the same feeling of wonder and excitment to be at the Olympics. Everyone was willing to share a smile and a laugh even if we didn't speak the same language.
I came to the conclusion at that moment.........it really is a "Small World" after all!








A somber sight, amid all the excitment, a touching memorial beneath the Olypmpic rings in honour of Nodar Kumaritashvilli, the young luger whos life was tragically ended that day.
Above, a lone camera man quietly films the memorial site.

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Olympic Torch

I don't know about you, but I think our Olypmpic Torch Bearer had to be the most enthusiastic one out there. He was older, but this did not stop him from hootin' and hollerin' and acutally jumping for joy when he ran with the Torch! If you didn't get in the Olympic spirit after you cheered this guy on, there is nothing that can help you.
That right, it was our turn today. The Olympic Torch burned through Delta. I was fortunate enough to witness all my three kids watch the torch run past them. With one in Kindergarten, one in grade 6, and one in high school all going to seperate schools. We made it work... even if I had to run faster than the guy with the torch to make it from one point to the other!!
The cherry on top of this wonderful, once-in-a-lifetime, history making event, was the fact that my little girl got to hold the Olypmic Torch.
















































Friday, February 5, 2010

Dream Big, Baby Girl...

Another Friday night lands me racing out the door to get her to the rink in time for skating. Yeah, it's been a long week and there seems nothing more inviting then sinking into a comfortable chair and taking a moment to Breathe.
But...when you have three kids there's bound to be someone or two who needs to be rushed somewhere for something. Friday night is no exception, there is no meeting up with girlfriends for drinks and heading out for a night of dancing. There is no anticipation of getting ready for a romantic dinner and movie with the "man of your dreams", there is no hour long soak in a frangrant bubble bath and curling up with the latest juicy novel. Nope, those days are gone.
So off we go, dinner is a coffee at the rink with an ice level seat, so she can see me and wave every time she looks up.
An hour and a half of learning her edges, around and around the rink. I usually bring a magazine or my laptop and drift off into some self indulgent quiet time, looking up every two minutes or so to catch a big grin and a wave from her. Today I brought my camera and stood by waiting and poised to capture her whizzing by. Usually a blur or just as I press my finger on the shutter release button someone else skates into the frame and I miss the shot. As I stood there watching intently waiting for her to sail by me, I found myself with a satisfied smile permanently plastered to my face.
I feel complete joy....joy in knowing she is living her dream, her dream that only a five year old can have. Not worrying about anything else at that moment but skating her best and blowing kisses to mommy. I realize camera in hand, eyes blurring from threatening tears, that this is what life is, this is everything I want and need, this is the best night of the week.....Friday night at the rink!



Tuesday, February 2, 2010

The Fort

If you live in the lower mainland and have not yet taken a day trip to historic Fort Langley, you are missing out! It is the most beautiful, quaint, old-fashioned town. Like something you would see in a Thomas Kinkade painting. I love it there in the Spring, Summer, Fall and in the Winter the town turns into a Christmas village postcard.
Well, there is one more reason I love The Fort......Chocolate!!! Not just any chocolate, but euphoric, mind numbing, died and gone to Heaven, you only need just one ~ chocolate! Yup, if you ever need a true chocolate fix, this is the place to go. The little tiny shop called Euphoria Chocolates on the corner of town offers fresh, handmade chocolates of every type. My favorite and the one I HAD to have this past Sunday was "the Aztec" oh my.....a delectable chocolate truffle sprinkled with cayenne pepper. The combination of heat & sweet is out of this world. It is an experience everyone should enjoy at least once in their lifetime.
We decided to walk off our chocolate coma and enjoy the rows of antique shops and make our way down to the old train station on the river. I had my camera in hand and got some amazing shots.






 

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