Tag Archives: Vancouver

So Long…

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Today we finished packing and cleaning and said goodbye to our home in Vancouver.  I’d been so focused on accomplishing all of the tasks on my to do list that I hadn’t taken the time to think about about how much I’ll miss our little old house – the one in which our baby girl learned to walk, where she learned to talk, where she said so long to diapers, where she graduated to a big girl bed, and so many other important things…  It all hit me when she walked into her empty bedroom for the final time, called out, “Goodbye, room!”, and then leaned into the wall with big open arms and gave it a kiss.  Ugh. Tears.

They snuck up on me again as I took this final photo of her on our front porch, ringing the doorbell as she always does, just one last time.

So long, little house in East Vancouver.  Big changes are ahead…

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Steveston, Pajo’s, & a First

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If there’s one thing we’ve been doing more of this month, it’s definitely eating out.  Normally, we eat out very rarely, but with our days filled with packing, sorting, organizing, and keeping little hands busy so they’re not digging in already packed boxes, we’ve been giving ourselves a break lately and eating some of our meals out.  Not only does mean that I don’t have to cook and that Brad doesn’t have to do dishes, but it also gives us all a much needed break from being indoors.IMG 0467

Tonight, Brad suggested that we head down to Steveston for fish and chips, which I thought was brilliant.  I’ve been meaning to take Miss G down to the oceanfront village forever and just haven’t gotten around to it, and with the weather as beautiful as it was today, it was the perfect place to enjoy some evening sunshine.IMG 0471

We arrived in Steveston, found parking, and headed straight to Pajo’s, which is pretty much an institution when it comes to fish and chips in the Lower Mainland.
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Miss G and I scouted out a table while Brad headed off to order our dinner, and before long, he returned with this…  2 large halibut and chip orders with fresh lemon and tatar sauce.  To say that it was delicious would be an understatement.  It was so good in fact, that I ate more than I should have, even though Grae and I shared and then gave a good portion of our food to Brad to eat.
IMG 0482Now if you know about our food philosophy when it come to feeding Miss G, you know that fried food like this isn’t something that happens usually.  But, with Pajo’s sourcing their ingredients locally {and my moving exhaustion}, we decided to make an exception just for tonight.  In fact, we even let her taste her very first french fry (*gasp!*)

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She of course loved it, so we let her choose two more, and that was it.  (Years ago I heard some crazy stat like ‘60% of North American kids’ first vegetable is french fries’ and whether it’s true or not, I think it may have scarred me for life.)IMG 0493Afterwards, we enjoyed a lovely walk along the boardwalk and checked out many of the fishing boats selling fresh seafood.

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It was the perfect way to end another busy day, and I can already say that I can’t wait to do it again next summer.IMG 0488

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iPhoneography // Passport Picture Success!

PhotoPhotoThe last time we got a passport for Miss G, she was just a couple of weeks old and so sleepy that our biggest challenge was waking her up in order to get a photo with her eyes open.  We literally tried waking her for 45 minutes before the photographer suggested the {somewhat cruel} method of gently wiping her face with a cool, wet cloth.  It worked, and with some seriously stealthy propping and holding, we got the photo we needed.  

This time around, I worried that we’d have the opposite problem.  With all of the restrictions on Canadian passport photos (serious expression! closed mouth!  centred face! no shine! no hair touching eyebrows!) and a little lady who very much prefers being on the go rather than staying still, I thought we could be in for a challenging visit.  

But here’s the thing. By now,  I should really know better than to ever doubt this little lady.  We chatted about what we’d be doing and how it would work beforehand, arrived at the photography store, she stood perfectly still where the photographer asked, and kept a closed-mouth serious expression on her little face.  He quickly snapped 3 photos, told us she had done better than most adults do, and sent us on our way 2 minutes after arriving.

The best part is that we submitted the passport application just before closing yesterday afternoon, and Gracen’s shiny new passport will be ready for pick-up come Monday.  I love how easy things are in Canada!

♥ 

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A Local Favourite: Maple Grove Pool

IMG 9694IMG 9685IMG 9690Today we took our little fish to one of our very favourite summer spots in the city… Maple Grove Outdoor Pool.  Gracen seriously loves this place.  The pool’s fairly shallow, so there are lots of areas where she can easily wade around without assistance, there’s a little slide which she zooms down on repeat, and there’s a island in the middle of the deeper end for her to jump off of.  We also love the fact that it’s surrounded by grassy areas and big trees and there’s a playground just outside of the gates.  It’s the perfect spot to escape to when our house is 32 degrees and we need to cool down, asap.  I’m guessing  we’ll be visiting a lot during the month of July.

Maple Grove Pool is open from 10:15 a.m. to 7:45 p.m. daily, with the closing time being an hour earlier after August 21st.  Admission is as follows: munckins 2 and under are free, children 3 to 18 years are $1.50, and adults are $2.50. Concession items are available and the facility operates on a cash only basis.

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UBC Gymnastics Drop-In

IMG 9373IMG 9376IMG 9380IMG 9386IMG 9382The upside to a very rainy June is that we’re crossing things off of our rainy day idea list that I thought we wouldn’t get to do before leaving Vancouver in July.  Today, we headed out to UBC to do something we’ve been meaning to do for a long while – attend a drop-in gymnastics session!  The class was held in Osborne Centre (where there is plenty of metred parking out front) and was a ton of fun.   We walked into a gym filled covered in mats and soft, padded flooring with everything from balance beams to parallel bars, to trampolines, rings, and ropes and Miss G began exploring.  Despite her very cautious nature, Grae had a wonderful time and actually asked if we could ‘flip the car around’ and go back to gymnastics while driving home.  Sadly, today was the last day of the spring session, and starting July 4th when the summer session begins, drop-ins will be on Thursday nights from 7:15 to 8:15 p.m. only, which really doesn’t work with young kids.   

Find out more about UBC Gymnastics drop-ins here.

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“Pickle Village”

This morning we woke to a chilly, grey day and decided to get outside and enjoy the change in temperature.  Miss G happily took the opportunity to wear her favourite {giant} purple toque and we headed down to Olympic Village (a.k.a. “Pickle Village”) to explore.  We definitely don’t spend as much time in the village as we should considering how lovely it is.  With interesting art pieces, a boardwalk lining False Creek, a gorgeous view of downtown, and one of the best natural playgrounds I’ve seen, it’s a great reminder of how lucky we are to live in such a beautiful city.  Here are a few snapshots of our morning…

IMG 8502“That’s a really, REALLY big birdie, Mama!”

IMG 8504Enjoying a bread treat and the view.

IMG 8515A kid-operated water feature – a playground favourite!

IMG 8520“Mama, I’m following the water!”

IMG 8517Searching for fish.

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Kerrisdale Play Palace is Back!

IMG 9843IMG 9844IMG 9845IMG 9858IMG 9861IMG 9854One of our very favourite rainy day spots, the Kerrisdale Play Palace, recently opened for another spring/summer season.  It seems to be a bit of a hidden gem because although it does get busy, it never seems busy enough for what it is – a very reasonably priced GIANT indoor play space filled with fun inflatables.  Miss G and I went this morning for the first time this season and whoa – did she ever have a blast.  While she absolutely loved it last year, this year was even better.  A little bit braver and a little bit bigger, she is now able to make her way to the top of all of the inflatables and down all of the slides – even the huge ones.  She ran, climbed, and jumped the morning away until her hair was literally wet with sweat and it was time to go home for lunch and a nap.  It was a good morning.

The Kerrisdale Play Palace is located at the corner of 41st Avenue and East Boulevard, in the arena directly behind the McDonald’s. When visiting, keep in mind that both you and your little one(s) will need socks and that weekday admission is divided by age groups.  For the 2013 schedule and admission fees, click here.

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Kid-Friendly Lunch at Corduroy

IMG 9660There’s no doubt that I’m a huge fan of kid-friendly cafés and restaurants.  And though a great kid’s menu is a good start, in my opinion, a kid’s play corner of some sort sets a restaurant apart from the rest when it comes to family-friendliness.   Needless to say, when I heard that Corduroy, a well-known adult-centred lounge in Kits, had opened its doors for lunch and included a kid’s play area in its weekday plans, I was pretty excited.

Gracen and I headed down to check it out with some friends this morning, and I have to say that I was thoroughly impressed.  Firstly, the location is absolutely perfect.  Just down the street from Kits Beach, a place we frequent often, it makes for a great lunch spot after a morning of sand and sunshine. 

IMG 9642The next thing I noticed was the kid’s menu.  Grae and I normally share a dish when we’re out for a meal (partly because one dish is plenty of food for both of us, and partly because usual kid’s menus are filled with deep-fried junk and processed white carbs), but with a menu that includes meals made with wholewheat, organic, and locally-sourced ingredients, I was more than happy to let Miss G order something of her own.  She picked the margarita pizza on a wholewheat honey rosemary crust, then was off to play.  

IMG 9646The play area, which is right in front of the big open window at the front of the restaurant, was well stocked with a play kitchen and pretend food, a workshop filled with plastic tools, wooden toys and puzzles, board books, mega blocks, and art supplies.  The best part, however, is that it’s fully enclosed.  No escaping kids here.

IMG 9654IMG 9655Gracen’s food arrived in no time at all, and she dove in immediately.  After polishing off her third piece, she paused for a moment and I assumed she’d had her fill. When I went to wipe off her hands and face, she looked at me confused and said, “But Mama, I still have more!”  The girl ate six pieces.  SIX.  

IMG 9656My food was just as good.  I ordered the red wine braised organic chicken panini and it was delish.  And the green salad?  It included dried blueberries, pine nuts, and wild rice.  Yum.

IMG 9650IMG 9661After lunch, the kiddos got back to playing while us mamas finished our meals and got to visit a little bit (not easily done when out to lunch with a bunch of toddlers at a normal restaurant).  

The entire visit was lovely – the atmosphere, the food, the play area, and the company included!  Corduroy is definitely added to our list of go-to kid-friendly restaurants… Now to plan our next visit!

Corduroy is located at 1943 Cornwall Avenue and is open for {kid-friendly} lunch on weekdays from 11 a.m. until 3 p.m.

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ANOTHER Beach Day

IMG 9470IMG 9461IMG 9451IMG 9475IMG 9463IMG 9501IMG 9493IMG 9491Another day at the beach.  Because it’s too gorgeous to be anywhere else.  

We’re soaking up every bit of this sunshine while we can.

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More Sand, More Sun.

IMG 9395Papa  GraeIMG 9374IMG 9370Beach FunIMG 9369With days as gorgeous as today, there’s no choice but to soak it all in.  It was a morning of sand and sunshine at Spanish Banks for us today.

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