Sunday, April 10, 2016

When we're helping we're happy ...

Helping at Grandma's House
... first I will measure how long it it ...
Photos: Catherine Jarvis
I had breakfast, lunch and supper at the house next door, even though they were so busy that I don’t know when they ate.

For lunch, I took my own over there, only to find them gone.

Still, I sat there and ate for Kelve was just leaving so we chatted for a while. I can always find someone in that house, even when the family isn’t there.

The biking trio were off for a visit to one of their favourite playgrounds as soon as the crepes were finished. I can see them coming and going.

The bike tires roll by my basement window – first Michael’s tires.  He rides a customized two-wheeler, his mom having knit a tube for the handle bars and a colourful cushion for the seat of the bike.

Then wheels of Richard’s bike go by the window -- pulling a child carrier behind it.

 I can only see Alice’s helmet. They ride off into the day.
... cooperation is good ...

Coming back  from their trip Michael stops to knock at the window and do sign language asking me if I have any candy.

I sign language back to him. I tell him that all of my candy is at his dad’s house.

They had bicycled by the neighbour's house (Jan and Gino’s) and she had delivered a plastic bag to them.

They are too young to know that the 3 foil-wrapped bunnies in the bag are Lindt chocolate Easter rabbits.

 I am interested in the unwrapping of the gifts: take the bell off of the neck of the confection, put the red ribbon around a wrist and then to commence seeing if the bunny were a solid piece or moulded.

.... these scissors aren't working that well ...
Michael started with the ears. 

They are solid chocolate and he slows down after a few bites. 

There is only so much chocolate a person can eat without having some water nearby.

Biting into the body and finding it a hollow cavity was the second part of the adventure, dumping out chocolate shavings and then licking the chards from the palms of their hands.

 His hand is now faintly chocolate on top of the playground dirt.

The children popped back into the house to get their swimming suits for an hour in the Foothills Pool before setting out on the LRT for the Saddle Dome where Aggie days was running: bring the farm to the city.

... keeping the other hand a long ways away
from the head of the hammer ...
 Some of the animals could be touched, a rare joy for urban children who only read about farm animals in books. In the saddle dome there were sheep dogs, cutting sheep from a flock.

When the kids began to explain where they had gone, that it was up many steps and then down a few, I had my own memory of going to watch a North American contest between sheep dogs.

That was a day at the Stampede where I didn’t go anywhere else. The commentator is what made the performance so interesting.

In yesterday’s event the dog was not allowed to get any closer than three feet away from the sheep, and then the dog has to stare the sheep down, pretty difficult with experienced sheep who just aren’t going to be stared down by a dog like that.

... if one hammer is good, two is better ...
We ate risotto at night – creamy, cheesy, a new food that was impossible for Michael to eat. He was bribed to put less than ½ a teaspoon in his mouth: one bite and he would get one Swiss Delice chocolate. Even the chocolate with that creamy hazelnut taste didn’t make getting another ½ teaspoon worth the trouble for him.

He got the chocolate and a sticker for his valiant try. Last night I was wondering if it were the new food or if he was too bagged from a full family day and too tired to eat. Either way he is starting a new chart: 10 stickers and you get a prize. I hope the prize is a new transformer. The old one got put in the garbage for it kept hitting Betty.

Just hoping because that transformer had been a favourite toy.



  1. love the photos with the essay. i also need to think about a prize for after 10 stickers! :-)

  2. I don't know what I would choose for a reward. I do sometimes give myself tick marks on the top page of my day timer, so that I can recognize that yes, I am doing things. I only get about 5 ticks before I wear out so there has been no reward.

    I don't know if to start earlier or to choose simpler tasks.

  3. The kids look really happy. I had fun with them the one day we missed going to MacDonalds. I owe Michael one visit to Chisholm when I get back.

  4. Speaking of happiness, Michael spent the afternoon at Kalina's today. Then in the evening we played an old world game -- "I saw a snake. I won it."

    "I two it."

    "I three it." And so on until someone says, "I ate it."

    Then you point at the person and say, "Ha ha, you ate a snake." But at supper tonight, everyone wanted to eat the snake, or the elephant, or the fish, or whatever it was that we dreamed up.

    Happiness! Created in so many ways: at MacDonalds, at Kalina's, and doing word jokes.