Lift for Brunch

We love going to Lift for brunch after church.
It is best on a sunny day.
 The menus come on an iPad. But that's not why we like to come here.
It's got a great view, right on the water, literally. The food is great, the brunch prices are very reasonable, and the service is top notch. They have high chairs, and free valet parking. FREE. 
 When we sat down we saw 5 seagulls chasing a bald eagle into the trees of Stanley Park. And a harbour seal bopping it's head in and out of the water. Now what other city in the world can you experience that, downtown?
I almost didn't want to tell you about this place, because it's our little secret.

We are Not Sorry

We are not sorry for the lack of posts lately, because it's summer, and we are outside enjoying the best of it. 
When one lives in a place where sunshine is so precious, one really learns to appreciate it.
 Castle has been doing awesome in his big boy bed. We are so proud of him. There have been some questionable kicking at the wall during his sleep, but that's about all we have to (not) complain about.
 The construction of the ultimate birthday present is almost complete.
The boys are super excited.

A Big Night

As I type, our freshly 2 year old boy is sleeping for the first night in his new big boy bed. We were prepared for anything and everything. Andrew and I had discussed different scenarios of what could happen and how we would deal with them as a united front. Well none of those things happened. 
We did his regular bed time routine, left him wide awake in bed and closed the door. He laid there quietly, kicking his feet once in a while on the wall, and half an hour later he was out. And congrats to him as he was still on the bed as opposed to on the floor. I looked into bed rails but decided to skip them because of comments I read from other parents about how they never used any. Most said their child fell out maybe twice, ever. We have a small foam mattress on the floor beside his bed in case he falls out. We are hoping that this transition will be just as smooth in the coming nights!

In between a sunburn and morning sickness

Yesterday was a busy day. Castle and I ventured out to the playground in our old hood in downtown Vancouver.
 It was a gorgeous day and he played until he dropped. We didn't spend that much time outside but I still managed to get way too much sun on my tank top clad shoulders. Not a fun lesson, but point taken.
 I was finally feeling back to my normal self from enduring what seemed to be a worst bout of morning sickness compared to when I was carrying Castle. Oh yes, BTW, baby #2 is on it's way!
I hit 12 weeks yesterday, first trimester almost over! And for the first time in a few months I wasn't nauseous all the time. Hurray! We were exhausted from being out all morning and I was looking forward to a quiet evening at home. Little did I know, our day had just begun.
I started bleeding quite heavily and with a call to our doctor we were off to the ER. Thanks to our friends living near by who offered to take care of Castle - life savers. On the drive to the hospital Andrew and I joked about how, finally, this was our date night. We were not even phased about going to a hospital, because we had been so many times to numerous ones over the past two years, we just knew it was all going to be okay. We knew that no matter what, we were in good hands - God's hands, the best ones. We were relieved to see a heart beat on the ultrasound of our tiny little bean. The doctor reassured us that since he did not see blood coming from my cervix, he was not concerned about our situation. Praise God. And he also told me not to do much, as in lifting, housework etc. Orders from the doctor! I will be strictly following his expertly wise advice, with pleasure.

Though I walk in the midst of trouble, You preserve my life. The Lord will fulfill His purpose for me: Your love, O Lord, endures forever - do not abandon the works of Your hands.
Psalm 138:7-8 NIV

Getting our Stampede On

On a sweltering day, Castle and I spent some time at the Calgary Stampede while Daddy worked.
 The Stampede was at it's 100th year, and since we were in town, might as well go check it out.
 We got there right when it opened, so it wasn't busy at all. I'm glad we were early birds because by early afternoon the place was packed.
 I was reading an article about how this is the only exhibition nation wide that has grown in attendance over the years, while all the other ones declined.
 I think that it has something to do with cowboys. :)
 We were at a horse show, and the MC asked the audience if anyone was from out of town. Nearly every one raised their hands. In fact, when he ask if anyone actually lives in Calgary, not a hand went up.
 There were people from all over Canada, US, Australia, and even France.
 We may have lived the closest, the next province away.
 They can't ever take those cowboy things out, if they do, it's just another typical exhibition. (My two cents.)
 This quilt was a-maz-ing!
 Castle really enjoyed all the animals, especially the horses. The hoop dance at the Indian Village was a highlight for me, I've never seen it live.
We didn't make any effort to scour tickets for the rodeos and such, but we could hear the cheering from afar. This having been my first time, I see now why it's such a big deal, all thanks to those cowboys. It did get me wishing that I had packed my straw cowboy hat along for the trip.

We are back!

Some photos from our road trip to Alberta last week...
 Our ritual pit stop is at Log Barn, just north of Vernon, BC.
This time Castle was old enough to feed the goats. He was reluctant.
 It turned into a loud 'get me outa here' cry very quickly when one of the goats shoved him in the bum with his nose. That was a deal breaker.
 This horse stared at me funny.
 He's always standing at that corner, waiting for someone to give him a treat.
 The other mandatory pit stop is at Moraine Lake, arguably my favourite place on earth.
 A perfect emerald lake surrounded by snowy peaks. You can only come in the summer, because it's all frozen over and covered in snow the rest of the year.
 Castle almost made it to the top of a short hike all by himself.
More photos to come.


FYI, we are out, having fun.
Will update you on all the fun a bit later. Happy Summer!!!

Dining Out: Meat and Bread

Woo-hoo! Summer is FINALLY here!
 Not as warm as I would like but that's not a complain at all, as long as it's sunny. We'll take it.
We ventured back to our old hood and had a picnic lunch in the park right below where we used to live. Memories.
For our picnic we had epic sandwiches from Meat & Bread.
 Porchetta with salsa verde, that's what they are famous for. Pork loin, pork belly, and crunchy crackling bits.
And then there's the special, beef chuck, shaved fennel, watercress, red onion, tomato, garlic basil mayo. This one was a real winner! Even better than the porchetta, if one could imagine such a crazy thing. The three of us shared two sandwiches. We were so stuffed.

Ladybugs to the Rescue

Our gardening experiment went down a bit of a wrong turn.
We've got aphids. Lots and lots of aphids. Mainly on the dill and cilantro, but we did find a few on the tomatoes. Aphids, do not go near those tomatoes, you hear?!
 Because our garden is on a balcony pretty high up in the sky, it's hard to attract natural predators. Therefore, we bought some. Actually, approximately 250 of them.
 I had no idea one can BUY ladybugs!
 We released a good handful, hoping that they will hang around to feast on all those annoying aphids.
 Get to work now, you ladybugs!
We will check back on how many of them remain tomorrow. May need to release some more. Aphids are out number ladybugs 1000 to 1, it seems.

Long Weekend

So after the boys got spoiled with birthday presents... ...

 we headed out to celebrate Canada Day.
We are not sure what Stormtroopers have to do with Canada Day, but Andrew said his Star Wars week is now complete.

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