Monday, February 17, 2014

Loving the Warm Weather

Not to much has happened the last few weeks. I have been working full time for the last 5 weeks and have one week left of a six week contract. I have really been enjoying my time with the grade one class but am looking forward to being back home with Sawyer a few days a week. 

We had a busy week this past week. Monday was 100s day (100th Day of school) so it was a very exciting day. Greg also had curling that day. Tuesday and Wednesday this past week Greg started badminton at school. On Wednesday Kids Club at church started up again so I had to run off to that right after school. Thursday is curling for both Greg and I. We have really enjoyed getting out Thursday nights and spending time with other people and learning a new sport. It has been a lot of fun (although I really suck). Unfortunately, I think there are only 2 weeks left of curling this season. Friday was obviously Valentine's day. The students were super excited not only because it was Valentines but also because they had a hot lunch that day and it was the Nickel Carnival. The Nickel Carnival is where the students go around playing a bunch of different games designed by the grade 4/5s. Each game cost a nickel or two. All money raised was then given to Telemiracle. 

Greg and I have not done anything for Valentines yet. We are planning to go out for dinner and a movie (Monuments Men) this upcoming Friday. I honestly didn't want to fight the crowds on Friday night. Saturday we enjoyed an evening with friends, playing games and enjoying food. The rest of the weekend has been very quite and relaxing.

Today was a beautiful day and we took advantage of the awesome weather and spent some time outdoors. We played in the backyard for awhile, then walked to the school, went sledding and down the slide. It was great to get some fresh air and enjoy the outdoors. 

Well as most of you guys know we are expecting another baby in August. We are very excited about our new addition. Sawyer really does not understand what is going on and when you ask her if she is going to be a big sister she shakes her head no. If you ask her where mommy's baby is she pats her own stomach. She is such a character and I enjoy watching her learn and explore many things. She watches everything we do and has begun to imitate us. You know you have been throwing up a lot during this pregnancy when you hear your daughter walk over to the toilet and make throw up sounds. Or if she walks by a garbage can she stops to make the same noises. We definitely have gotten a kick out of watching her. 

Well we hope you have all enjoyed your Family Day as much as we have enjoyed ours. 

 Daddy and Sawyer playing in the snow. Sawyer is crawling to Daddy since the snow is to deep for her and Edgar is burying his head.

Tuesday, January 14, 2014

Glory Season

Its been just over a week and school is back in full swing.  The first day of school was interesting as the busses didn't run (-49 with wind chill), and with the far majority of students coming from farms, the entire school only had 22 students.  Needless to say, my 5 students and I had a lot of fun playing a variety of games.  There haven't been too many surprises or differences than before Christmas.

I started my basketball team/intramurals this week.  My plan is to teach some basic basketball skills to those wanting them.  If after some time there is still a high level of participation and the skill level drastically improves, we will enter a team toward the District tournament.  Also starting this week is the school's curling program.  We are sending one team to Districts and I am the teacher attending.  Even though I don't have a wealth of knowledge I am giving pointers wherever I can.  It should be fun as our team has 5 excellent female curlers who are hoping to do very well.  And finally next week another teacher and myself will be starting our badminton practices for the upcoming tournament.  It sounds like a lot to handle, and maybe it is, but I am really enjoying getting out and participating anywhere and anyway I can.

Over the weekend I had a chance to go and see one of Carievale's minor hockey teams play.  They were the Grades 4 and 5, but only have 8 players on their team.  And they don't need anymore.  They are a perfect 12 for 12 this year.  It isn't too alarming that they have won every game, something that is accomplished quite regularly by teams in small leagues.  But digging a little deeper and one will find how dominant this team actually is.  In 12 games they have scored 246 goals (averaging 20.5 goals/game) and allowed 35 goals (2.92 goals/game).  The average scores of their games are 20-3!!!!!  Their worst game, or closest, was a real nail biting...17-3.  

Our church is voting on a Pastor this weekend.  He is an older man, originally from Markham, transplanted to Winnipeg working in missions at a larger church.  He was a guest paster before Christmas and we really enjoyed his message.  It would be nice to have a full time pastor.  

Sunday, January 5, 2014

New Year

We made it back to Carievale and are thankful for safe travels.  After thoroughly enjoying spending time with family and friends, we began our trek back to Saskatchewan.  As many of you know, our flight barely made it before the ice storm before Christmas.  We had a lot of luck (prayers were answered) that all connections were made.

The same was similar on our way back to Saskatchewan.  We left Niagara during the heaviest snowfall while at home.  We passed several motorists that had ended up the ditches, as we thought, "oh no, not again!"  We made it to the airport 1 hour before take off.  We made it through check-in and security quickly and only had to wait for 10 minutes before boarding.  Our flight was uneventful, save Sawyer deciding she didn't want to sit in either of our laps.  Overall we definitely lucked out in flights and the details surrounding them.

When we landed in Thunder Bay the temperature was a brisk -40 with wind chill.  It wouldn't have been that bad, except before leaving the parking lot I had to: clean the car, brush the snow off, scrape the ice, install Sawyer's car seat, and oh yeah, replace a burned out headlight.  On Friday we left for Saskatchewan, a drive of 12 hours (at least normal driving hours).  Unfortunately we only made it to Dryden (4 hours or 1/3 of the total length) as the weather and roads slowed us down.  The roads weren't that treacherous, but the heavy snowfall and blowing, drifting snow caused for very low visibility.  The storm was predicted to last until early Saturday morning, so we decided to spend the night in Dryden.  Part of our decision to fly out on Thursday was the cautious plan to leave 3 days for driving.

The weatherman/woman/people were right as the next morning the skies were clear and the sun was out.  The roads in Ontario weren't great as we were slowed by about 20 km/h, but better to arrive late than in a box.  Once we reached Manitoba the roads were almost perfect.  Besides the -40, with wind chill, it was a beautiful day.  Even better, I was able to get gas in Manitoba for 105.9, which was a lot cheaper than the 134.9 it was in Kenora (about 150 km away).

After a full day of driving, a little more than 9 hours, we emptied the back seat and went to gather Edgar.  He loved his vacation on the farm, as he was extremely hesitant to come back with us when it was time to go.  Sawyer especially loved having him back, giving him plenty of hugs and kisses.

Looking back over the past 15 days, our little family travelled roughly 5,000 km round trip (plus two trips to the GTA).  The two flights were Sawyer's 15th and 16th and an unheard of number of hours spent in a vehicle.  We are thankful she is a great traveller, although the last flight she wanted nothing to do with sitting still.

It was an extremely busy 12 days, but we were glad with how we spent them.  While there were rushed afternoons, long drives, and short sleeps, they made for lasting memories.

Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Carievale Happenings

Seems like I start every blog with the same excuses/apologies about the time between postings.  Oh well, better late than never.  A lot has happened since the last time we talked so hopefully nothing is forgotten.

This week my students are participating in a Curling Clinic which will culminate in a Bonspiel on Thursday.  I have enjoyed the clinics thus far and am thoroughly looking forward to the game this week.  Curling has always been one of those sports/activities that I wanted to try.  Claire and I both are really enjoying curling on Thursday nights. It's a nice night out with Sawyer at home with the sitter.  Unfortunately it has been cancelled on more than one occasion.

We had our Christmas Concert last week and my class performed a skit entitled "This."  The skit had a Seinfeld-esque twist where our scene was the students trying to choose their Concert idea.  So they badly sang and danced and realized they couldn't do anything except a skit.  It had rave reviews and the students had a lot of fun performing it.

Afterwards our principal hosted a Christmas Cheer for the staff.  It was fun to get to know some of them outside of the school.  One of them was our music/choir worker.  He is a semi-writer/semi-pastor from Oxbow but originally from Cape Breton.  I found out that night that he went to Acadia and lived in Wolfville from 1986-1991.  I commented that I have family from around there and I liked the University town.  And for the best part........wait for it.......are you sitting down?..... Aunt Marianne?......he knew Dr. Cherry quite well. For those that have no idea who I am talking about, Dr. Cherry was a Baptist minister from Kentucky who looked and talked like Colonel Sanders.  By being on his own he was routinely around my Aunt and Uncle's dinner table on family meals.  One of my cousins even lived in apartment at Dr. Cherry's house as well.  Needless to say, that five provinces away in a small town of 242, we connected on someone.  What a small world!!

Way back when in November, our volleyball team played in the year-end tournament.  They played extremely well and ended the round robin in first place.  In the championship game they met their match and lost by a score of 25-23, 24-26, and 10-15.  Not too bad, considering one of our most experienced players was missing.  Oh well, we'll get them next year.

Our little family also pre-celebrated Christmas with Sawyer last Saturday.  We figured lugging presents home and then back wouldn't be the most efficient.  Sawyer opened her stocking and presents and enjoyed playing with her new presents.  It was so cute to watch her open her stocking. She would take something out, look at it intently and then place it on the floor in front of her. She seemed to understand what she was supposed to do with it. She was blessed with a doll, stroller, and a Little People play set (oh and a plastic ball, of course right).  We are really looking forward to coming home this weekend.  We have a long 12 hour drive on Friday afternoon (staying overnight in Steinbach, MB) and Saturday to Thunder Bay before our flight to Toronto that night.

My time in the classroom has been going well.  I continue building relationships with the students and feel that they are enjoying this year.  During parent-teacher interviews one parent asked,  "Do you walk on water?"  Apparently their daughter is REALLY enjoying this year.

We wish everyone a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.

I guess our New Year's resolution should be to blog more often eh?

Sunday, November 10, 2013

The Weekend

This weekend we wanted to do something different then we normally do. We had discussed going to Brandon on the weekend and seeing a Wheat Kings hockey game and doing a little shopping. On Friday we decided last minute that we weren't going to go to Brandon and instead we were going to spend some time in Estevan.

We started our trip by going to Walmart and picking up a few odds and ends. We then went to the aquatic centre and toured around it a bit. It is pretty large. There was a library, a large ice rink, and a track around the rink, a gym and then the pool.

The pool was very nice (a little cold for adults though :) ). It had a large slide, hot tub and an area for little kids to play. There was a thing that filled buckets up with water that dumped on your heads, a little slide for little kids and lots of toys. Sawyer LOVED it!!!! In fact she was really upset when we had to leave.

As we were leaving we saw one of Greg's students. We also happen to attend the same church as this student and his family. He was there watching his sister play hockey. She is on the Estevan double A girls hockey team. This boys sister has been a great help with Sawyer at church and she is going to help us out with babysitting on Thursday nights while Greg and I curl. It was nice to watch some hockey and we look forward to going to watch another time.

Today we went church and then had a nice relaxing time at home. We all had a nap today which was really nice and much needed.

Well I hope everyone else had an equally nice weekend.

Sunday, October 27, 2013

Pumpkin Carving

With living in Carievale, we have had the opportunity to do some things that we have not been able to do in a few years. One of those things was carving a pumpkin.  I was super excited about getting a pumpkin and carving it and watching Sawyer experience the whole pumpkin carving experience. Greg  was an excellent picture taker as we enjoyed feeling the pumpkin "guts".  Sawyer was not 100% sure about the pumpkin insides and seemed to be more interested at putting the guts back in the pumpkin that I had already taken out. 

All in all we enjoyed our pumpkin carving experience. Sawyer was not happy in the end when I put the pumpkin back outside. She liked it so much she wanted to keep playing with it. I think I will put a light in it on Halloween and  show her how it glows. 

We are not taking Sawyer out trick or treating this year. We will probably go out next year. We felt she was to young to go out and does not eat candy so it was pointless. I know that we could eat the candy but our waist lines hardly need that. 

We hope you have all enjoyed your weekend and are gearing up for this next week. 

 Sawyer kept wanting to touch the pumpkin here but we were trying to cut off the top.
She seemed very into the pumpkin carving experience.

The final product!

Sunday, October 20, 2013

At the Movies

It has been a relaxing weekend.  We had a chance to go to the Carnduff Theatre on Friday night with another couple and saw The Butler.  It was so refreshing being able to "go out" as we haven't been able to do that the last three years.  We did find a lack of babysitters (we have a surplus back home with all the family members all queued up) here though.  With it being rural there aren't many people nearby and many of those who are able can't afford the pay cut (the allowances out here are ridiculous).  The theatre was pretty amazing.  It is a converted church from way back that recently purchased a digital projector.  Tickets are $6 with popcorn only $2.  Not bad for a date night.

Saturday we travelled into Estevan for our weekly grocery and city experiences.  At night I went to Carievale's Hoedown.  It is a fundraising event to support the local arena, riding area, ball park, and hall.  It consisted of around 100 silent auction items that have been donated by local businesses and families.  Some were small (pies, baked goods, etc.) while others were a lot larger (Apple TV, brand new chainsaws, $500 Spa gift certificate, etc.).  Needless to say they were all out of my price range, as the pies were at $50 when I had left. 

Claire has been getting opportunities at Carnduff School recently which has worked out.  It is a much larger school, which includes a high school.  She has enjoyed working there and subbing all around.  She doesn't have to mark or plan, so who wouldn't.  I like her only subbing too, because I can still rely on her to help out marking sometimes too.