Sunday, November 30, 2003

Weekend in Kelowna

Chuck had a medical conference in Kelowna (a small-to-medium-sized city) on Saturday and we decided to tag along. Originally we assumed it would be Christmas shopping weekend, but I worked really hard to simplify our Christmas gift-giving this year and am making almost everything and cutting back, so there was no shopping to do. We decided to go anyway, because the kids have been dying for the chance to swim, and we know a good motel with 2bdrm suites and a nice pool.

So on Thursday we picked Erin and Noah up at art class and headed out. Chuck just got himself a laptop with a DVD player, and we plugged it in in the back of the minivan so that the kids could watch "Blue Planet" episodes throughout the 4-hour drive. This was a huge hit.

True to predictions, the kids spent 3-6 hours a day in the pool. Noah went from being a "barely swimmer" in the shallow end to doing proper dives in the deep end on the first day. Erin was a little frustrated that it took her longer to learn to dive but she managed. This has definitely been Noah's year to shine. Lots of things are coming easily to him all of a sudden, including piano, composition, reading, gymnastics and now swimming.

We did the usual juggling of needs and priorities when it came to choosing venues for meals out. We spent a great couple of hours in a mega-bookstore. Sophie got lost, though, which was sad. She wandered out of the children's section when she lost sight of me around a bookshelf. I thought dh, who had gone off to wander through adult non-fiction, had her. Then I got paged. She was a little teary but none the worse for wear. We had a reiterative discussion about rules for staying together and about what to do if you think you're lost. I'd forgotten to go over that one in a while. Noah and Erin know it all, but Sophie's still just barely five. She needs to hear it regularly. Anyway, I tried to stay low-key. She was a bit upset and already knew she'd made some mistakes.

We got some great books. Can't wait to get started on Cornelia Funke's "The Thief Lord".

I went shopping consignment clothing. I stopped at the music store to get Grade 6 level books for Erin and Grade 1 stuff for Noah. They were both very excited. They're being "promoted" this month by their piano teacher. We bought some dishes and did a warehouse store stop.

On the way home the kids watched LOTR "The Two Towers" on DVD (a new purchase).

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