Wednesday of change

Matisse got his dream to come true. Soccer was finally back on the front burner after having been on hold for over two years during the pandemic. He got al signed up and bought the needed equipment.

But, when the practice day was announced, I was a little disappointed. It fell on the same day as scouts. Even if Matisse really warms up to going to scouts, the draw of soccer was even stronger! Will the two days always conflict, I do not know, but for now, Matisse will not be active in scouts.

When the day finally came, it was going to be an evening of driving around dropping off and picking up kids at 2 different locations.

It was a simple enough task. But, we were 15 minutes late fro Matisse’s practice, and 30 minutes late for Alvin’s scouts. I was able to hang out with scouts for 15 minutes before leaving.

While waiting for Matisse to finish soccer, we ended p leaving at 10 minutes before scouts ended. We were 20 minutes late. I arranged for someone to watch him until I got there, but it turned out that scouts was over 20 minutes late in finishing and leaving. We made it on time. Matisse even got to hang out with his friends after scouts:)

Next time, we will leave early in order to get Matisse to soccer early, and then Alvin and I can make it only 5-10 minutes late to scouts. Things will get better!

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Saturday of swimming, and then some!

Our day was busy, and still had fun!

Swimming started off the end of the morning where Alvin went to swimming, and Matisse went to his new possible high school.

Alvin and I mad e quick, and slightly late walk to the YMCA. Once there, he rushed over to his class.

While Alvin was swimming, I bumped into Georges’ parents(George from scouts). Turns out he takes lessons at the YMCA as well. When Alvin was done, he came over and said HI to Georges’ parents.

Matisse saved the day and brought a trowel . I forgot to get Alvins towel.

While waiting for Matisse to finish his class, Alvin and I headed out to the playground at the YMCA and had some fun.

After the lessons, we headed over to the library to return some books.

On our walk home, we stopped at a persons house with large crab apples. They were home so we asked if they would mind if we picked them They agreed with no problem. Yeah! We will be making some new crap apple jelly:)

When we finally got home, we had a little rest before the grand event of the day: Melissa’s birthday! The boys could not wait to go. Matisse always love family gatherings: LOTS OF FOOD!

The boys played all night. Alvin tended to bounce around as usual. Matisse hung out with his cousins and played a few games.

By the time the festivities were over, we got home and it was almost 9PM.

A great way to end our day:)

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Walk to the park!

Another long day that we decided to end it with a walk to the park. Mom was out with a friend for dinner, and we headed out.

Our walks are also colorful, since all three of us talk about different things. Matisse starts off unsmiley, but does not take long that he is a cheery and active part of the conversation. Alvin, he cheery inquisitive self is always asking questions.

Once we arrived, the park had a few visitors. Not full like on a Saturday afternoon when it is beautiful out, but enough to make it interesting.

I sat down for a few minutes and let Matisse and Alvin do thee thing. Matisse could not rsist the call of the excersize equipment and jumped on them to start showing me how strong he is by dong some chin ups. He could do 4 of them. Well, 4 more than me:) Alvin, I think that he found himself a new calling in life. We will call him the Goose Gatherer! He decided to make himself at home in the middle of a flock of feeding geese who were happily razing away ad finding out little food to eat. He was walking around with them acting like a little goose himself.

It did not take long that Matisse, who only a few minutes earlier was calling Alvin silly for playing with the geese, jumped in the game himself with the geese was was chasing the geese right along with his silly little brother:) He couldn’t resist:) They had so much fun that they chased all the geese away!!

Then it was time for all of to start our daily excersize routine. All of us tried doing pushups(or modified easier ones of the less strong like me;-)

After our work out, we headed on home to find mom had already arrived, and heading for her walk! We are all getting in shape:)

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Final flight(s)…

We were all ready to get back to the airport in order to finally take a plane to MInnesota. Bags were packed, and it was time to leave. Our flight was changed a bit. Instead of a direct flight, we would pass through Chicago. This si not ideal, but at least we will be on our way.

Upon arriving at the airport, we lucked out and got a parking space right next to the elevator. We emptied the car and headed towards the check in counter. We made our way through the line for the scanner and made it through in relatively no time. We were happy. I was a little worried, because we had 30 minutes to get from one gate to another. But, the lady at the counter showed us that it was pretty close and that we’d make it. Almost perfect.

Customs was a breeze and we were off for the long wait until the plane left. We got ready for our wait. While waiting, I did learn on a second flight leaving later, but it was direct. But, after waiting in line, and asking the check in counter, there were already 30 people waiting to get the few remaining seats. Will not work.

When we only had 25 minutes before take out, no one was on board. I was getting a little worried. Unbeknownst to us, there was another delay of 30 minutes. When we finally left, it was over an hour and 15 minutes past the original departure time. Meaning, we would get to Chicago the same time that our flight to Minneapolis would leave. I was, kind of concerned, but we were stuck, because the later flight flying direct to Minneapolis was booked beyond full. We either stayed home or hopped on the plane.

We hopped on the plane!!!

Flight went well, and Myrtelle checked the inflight internet allowing up visiting Air Canada flight information. It confirmed what I feared. We were arriving when the second plane would be taking off.

We arrived at the airport and ran to the second plane. It was sitting there and had not left, BUT, they closed the door, and were letting no one on board:( We were stuck in Chicago.

After being changing flights rather quickly with United Airlines, we found the Air Canada check out counter. They said no problem, we can book you are hotel due to the late flight. We sat down and waited for them to call us when the hotel was ready and booked. They even offered us 2 $20 vouchers each for meals. Kind of nice, considering…

30 minutes passed and it was after 9:30PM… Kids were tired… And we still had no room to stay… We bit the bullet and walked across the street and stayed in what we thought was the fancy Hilton. Fancy name, pricey room. Once we were in the room, the air conditioner turned on every 10 minutes making lots of noise, and the toilet would not stop running until I fixed it. One expects a lot better from this type of hotel.

After a short night, we got up and headed back to the airport, so we would not miss the plane, in case the check in lines were long.

We made it through the lines pretty quickly and had plenty of time to have breakfast before catching the plane.

We were happy just to get on the plane, but exhausted having to bounce around and not knowing how we would eventually arrive at our destination.

We hopped on the plane and flew away form Chicago!

Upon arriving in Fargo, we grabbed our bags and headed to the counters for car rentals.

After spending 15 minutes looking for a car, non were available for more than 3 days, and none were available to drive and leave by the Minneapolis airport. We needed to find a new way to Grandmas’ house:(

I called Grandma and told her that we were stuck at the airport and no rental cars were available. She asked me to call back in 15 minutes. So I hung up and waited….

After calling back, she said that auntie princess(Lynda) would be by soon to save the day.

When she showed up, we were all happy to see her. We loaded up the car and headed to the meeting point have way to Grandma house.

When we got there, we were very happy to see her. But, she was having a problem. Her car woudl not start, even after just getting here car from the garage 2 days before!!

Auntie Lynda gave her a boost and we were set to go!!

We had a good trip back to her house and where happy to settle in, after it took 3 days to get to here house!!!!

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Staycation before Minnesota!

We had an extra day to hang out in our home town. We were going to play a bit, work a little and have some fun.

After a filling pancake, sausage and bake potato pieces, they boys found the neighborhood kids and went out for a play.

We went to the local park and played frisbee a bit and after they got bored, we headed home. After that, the great rollerblade session was planned.

Unfortunately, Alvin had a fall on his bike, and the rollerblading was cancelled. Alvin got a good scrape on the side of his knee cap. This needed cleaning and bandaging. He also hit his mouth on something when he fell, and his loose tooth popped out. I was more worried about his other teeth in case they were damaged. After a quick worried inspection, they seemed to be okay.

After a bit of relaxing, and supper, we went for an outing to a local park not too far from the house. We discovered a recently installed kids playground at the Ahuntsic park. Both Matisse and Alvin proved to us the amazing feats of running up a giant hill.

Every one was rewarded for the amazing running skills by a cool ice cream cone:)

Then we went home and went o bed:)

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The flight that never was…

You know the feelings. The ones that you have when you have an upcoming trip/vacation. You are excited to go, and are counting down the days. Looking forward to the departure date.

Well, we were exactly that. We even had a chalkboard that we used to count downto the final day! As corny as that sounds, that is what we did:)

The final day arrived and we were more or less packed. Matisse and Alvin all set to do. Mom, her cool, calm and collected composure. Me, about the same.

We hopped in the car to head off to the airport. We arrive at about 2:30PM, and parked the car. We noted the exact location, so when we come back form our trip, we’d more easily find the car.

We arrived at check in, and and with so few people, we breezed through. Wed quickly sped through the area where they scanned us and our bags. Simple. American border crossing, only about 60-70 people were ahead of us. We were happy! Not a long wait. We got through there in maybe 15 minutes. Yes!!!

We were inside the airport. We can relax and just let time go by while we wait for the plane. We decided to have a celebatory meal at Houstons. Nice bar and grill sort of restaurant. It was pretty good.

When we were almost done, Myrtelle got an unexpected email from Air Canada. Yikes! The flight was cancelled!!!! These happened justr before 5PM. Our flight was for 6:30PM.

No details on what was to follow. We were expecting a follow up email to let su know hwo we woudl eb recheduled. Over an hour later, no news. I decided to go ask the lady at the air canada counter at our departure gate. After she was finished helping someone, she basically said that she could nto help me, an dpointed off to a departure gate down the hallway, that was for customer service.

Once there, the line was 50-60 people long.We hopped in line and it was about 6:30PM.

Over an hour later, and not even half of the others had been served. WE did eventually get another email from Air Canada, a little after 8PM. They had rescheduled us in 2 days time, but not on a direct flight., arriving 2 hours later. Good thing, we no longer had to wait in line. Bad thing, we lost two days from our planned vacation. WE decided to have a mini staycation, and have some fun.

We went home to start our next fun filled two days!

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Sleep over, the start of more to come…

The idea was planted a week earlier. The four neighborhood stooges(Matisse, Marlone, Mohamed and Naveed) had this great idea of a sleep over at our house. Well, 4 and 1/2 stooges actually(the 1/2 being Alvin of course!). The following weekend was going to be a madhouse of a time with all the buddies over. Video games and other crazy things to do!!

Things deviated when the location was going to be changed Naveeds house.

It was mentioned once, and I asked why the need the change. In the end, the sleepover was at our house.

Friday night rolls around and the idea was to have a food pizza, video games and some other activities. Marlone and Naveed almost did not show up. After a little discussion, they all showed up, and we decided on the kinds of pizza toppings that they all wanted.

They all then ran down and played FIFA soccer on Mohameds’ playstation. They played for a good while after eating pizza, and at one point, Naveed and Marlone decided to head on home, since they were not staying the night. The two and a half stooges who remained, ended up “going to bed” since it was too late.

But, silly as I was, I believed them! Joke was on me. They stayed down there talking for the next hour or so before silence finally took over and dreams floated in…

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Alvin, the basics, almost…

While Alvin loves the water when playing at the local park with his friends, he has certain reservations when going to his weekly lesson at the YMCA. He can start off his lesson in the cheeriest of moods, but some where in those 45 minutes, his mood changes and he is afraid of the water and all that has to do with swimming. When all was good, he loved swimming, but when he was unhappy, he wanted out.

The last lesson had just a couple more moves that he needed to demonstrate his ability to swim. While he tried, he just had not yet mastered them

He will be repeating the otter level of swimming lessons again. I am still super proud of Alvin, because going into these lessons, which were his first lessons ever, he knows much more coming out of this class than he did going into it. We will be practicing his swimming during the summer so that the time he signs up for the Otter class in the fall, he will be well practiced and will do much better and less nervous about being in the water:) I am looking forward to the day that he gets his card at the end of the class when he graduates to the Dolphin class!!! Matisse will have competition soon!

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Birthday today! 7!

This day was anticipated long before it arrived. The count down was done many moons prior to the day of festivities. He was 7, long before he actually got there:)

From the moment that he got up, Alvin was ready for his day. His gleam in his smile, and the spring in his step. This was his day, and he was sharing it with all of us.

The house was cleaned with care, and the food was prepared with love all for the little guy!

whet the guests finally arrived at 3PM, the birthday boy was ready to great them at the door. All the neighboorhood kids showed up: Maliq, Sara, Mohamed, Marlone, and Naveed. As the afternoon went on, the aunties, and cousins showed up as well. The party was in full swing and Alvin was smiles all the way!

There was plenty to eat. Even a Mignon cake and a ice cream cake for all to eat.

I did notice that during the evening, 4 distinct groups formed:

  • little people – Sara, Maliq and Alvin
  • adolescents – Mohamed, Naveed and Matisse (and Alvin too when he bounced between groups)
  • teenagers Melissa, Jean Marc and Maxim (and Alvin too when he bounced between groups)
  • adults – all the aunties (and Alvin too when he bounced between groups)
  • Dad just bounced around playing referee when needed, but mainly hung out with the little people making sure that they had fun

When present time arrived, Alvin was front and center, ready to receive the gifts form all his admirers. He was is such a joyful mood, as to be expected from a birthday boy.

By the time the guests were ready to go home, Alvin was definitely ready for a good long sleep:) He deserved it after a great performance!

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Matisse, officially off to swimmers level!

How is it possible,. Just over two years ago, my little Matisse was a beginner swimmer, did not want to do the lesson that was asked of him by the teacher more than once. Meaning, he would not get better.

For some reason, after hitting the dolphins level, he got interested in really learning how to swim. He liked going back, and learning new things.

Today, I have the pleasure of learning that not only does Matisse love swimming even more. He also advanced to the next level of swimming: Nageurs(swimmer)

He will now officially learning how to swim. 🙂 The basics are now mastered. My master fish is ready for the next level of fishdom!

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