A busy month, the kids move home, and we go out

Well this past month has been quite busy with the young man moving back home from university, and starting a new job. Middle child is now home and working almost full-time hours, as she is still going to school one day a week. She is also playing soccer along with her sister who commutes in for games. Add in hubby’s work schedule and we are all over the place trying to coordinate things. Then you have me, who is in charge of coordinating, and I am without a laptop for five weeks (that’s a whole other story). Some days are just insane, with one going this way, another going that way, and so on. Do I ever know who will be home for dinner? Nope, but I still have to cook meals for four, making sure there are leftovers (everyone loves leftovers, except me).

With our crazy schedules, hubby and I still found time to attend a concert in Toronto to see Calexico. Not wanting to drive because of summer construction having already started (people tend to say Canada has two seasons “Construction and Winter”), we took the bus and streetcar. Neither one of us is all too familiar with Toronto, but with instructions from my sister we were able to navigate our way to The Opera House. We had thought we would have had time to sit down for a dinner when we arrived but that was not the case. So as we walked the numerous blocks from the Go Bus Station to the streetcar we grabbed a sausage in a bun from when of the street vendors (they were delicious, but when you are really hungry any food seems to be fabulous). The kids were amazed that I was able to eat my sausage, walk with my cane, and not spill a drop on me. When we arrived at our destination, we did have time for hubby to have a beer and me a soda water with lime. We then lined up for the concert.

Picture of the Opera House

Once we were inside The Opera House, it was not at all what I had expected. There were no seats on the first floor! Just a few tables for leaning on, but there were three bars, lol. At a loss, I suggested we try the second floor where there was another bar, and five tables each with two bar chairs. We tried the lower balcony but there was only a very long bench which was already full. We quickly went back up the twelve stairs in complete utter darkness, people were using their cell phones to see their way, and grabbed the last table with chairs.

Picture of the stage in the Opera House

The opening singer for the band was Gaby Moreno from Guatemala. She sang in both English and Spanish and what a voice! Her music is a mixture of R&B and Jazz. As she sang, her fingers meticulously worked the guitar strings. If you ever have the opportunity to see her in concert, I highly recommend the show, you won’t be disappointed.Pictue of Gaby Monero

After listening to Ms. Moreno for forty-five minutes, it was time for Calexico to play. Calexico is described as an Americana/Tex-Mex/indie rock band that originates from Tucson, Arizona. The numerous instruments – guitars, bass, cello, piano, keyboards, accordion, trumpet, percussion, the list goes on, and the energy in the vocals is just amazing. They played for almost two hours with numerous encores. Neither my husband nor I were disappointed. All in all it was a fabulous evening out.

Picture of the band Calexico

Hubby and I went on a double date with the eldest and her boyfriend

Niagara Falls, Ontario Canada

When I was speaking with middle child late last week, I told her that her dad and I would not be home on Saturday evening because we were going to Niagara Falls (Ontario, Canada) with her older sister and her boyfriend. Middle child immediately squealed “you’re going on a double date!” Well I never thought of it that way, but yes I was going on my first double date. Before the date could occur, I arranged for a dog sitter, not a babysitter, but a dog sitter. Ever since our beagle Cocoa had two strokes, he doesn’t like to be left alone for more than a couple of hours, three tops and since I wasn’t sure how long we would be out, I asked my best friend’s daughter if she would mind dog sitting.

You're going out, but I have my hat on?

You're going out, but I have my hat on?

Hubby and I were promptly picked up at 3:45 p.m. Our daughter’s boyfriend had borrowed his father’s jeep for the occasion. Now I have always admired Jeeps, until now. It was a huge step up to get into the back seat and being disabled, I was unable to lift either leg that high without assistance. Once in, it wasn’t too bad, except you are sitting bolt straight up, and there is no seat adjustment, making the hour-long drive highly uncomfortable. Hubby is around 6’2″ and surprisingly there wasn’t a lot of head room left once he was sitting, thankfully there were no bumps in the road, else hubby would have had a sore head. Note to self: will not buy a Jeep in the near future.

As we were driving along, the eldest decided to use an app on her phone giving us step-by-step directions (I can easily drive to Niagara Falls having been there many times, but I wasn’t exactly sure how to get to the restaurant). Hubby and I find the app to be hilarious, as it loudly tells you to turn right or left or take this ramp to highway. The drive was uneventful for the first half, until we saw this one driver. Now we are on the QEW (Queen Elizabeth Highway) where vehicles are speeding along at anywhere from 100km to 120km (some even faster), when I notice this man who is supposed to be driving his Ford 150 truck holding the steering wheel, but instead he is texting with his left hand while holding another cell phone with his right hand up to his ear! What on earth is he using to hold the steering wheel? What would have happened if had hit a pot hole? Hubby had his camera out and tried to snap a picture of the driver so we would have proof to show to the police, but sadly there was too much traffic at the time and he was only able to get a picture of the back of the truck. Note: We did not phone 911 at the time because previously when I had seen a distracted driver, the police officer that I spoke to, said not to dial 911, just call the nearest detachment. Well the nearest detachment (Niagara region) only answers non-emergency phone calls Monday to Friday. The next day I called the Niagara region Ontario Provincial Police and left a message. Plus I would like to get clarification on what I should have done.

We soon arrived at the restaurant and were seated beside a window with a spectacular view! As we ate our dinner, the colour illuminations of the falls began. It was beautiful. After finishing our meal, we walked down to the falls for a closer look. It was freezing, especially with the mist falling and the wind wrapping around us. The American side of the falls is completely frozen over, whereas the Canadian side is still flowing. The river beneath the falls is also frozen, showing some massive cracks in the ice. Sadly hubby’s camera was not able to capture the magnificence of the scene. If you haven’t visited Niagara Falls in the winter, now is the time to go. I would love to go again but I would visit earlier in the day so we can photograph the frozen landscape.

Niagara Falls

Niagara Falls

Niagara Falls

The toilet seat and unicorn chat for date night

I’ve sunk to a new low. After feeding the dog Friday evening I asked hubby if he wanted to go out for dinner for date night? I have a $50.00 gift card we could use at Harvey’s, Milestones, Swiss Chalet, or Montana’s I said. We hymned and hawed, and decided on leftovers while both complaining about how tired we were. Hubby at least had a good excuse for being tired, he had worked on taking the pool down all day, whereas I had only worked in the garden for an hour and had two naps. After eating and feeling bored, hubby suggested we go to Lowe’s and buy more subway tiles for our bathroom redo we started almost a year ago (some may remember my tweets about a toilet in my living room just before Christmas).

toilet in livingroom

So it was decided, off to Lowe’s we went for date night. After picking up the tiles we needed, we browsed the aisles, in no hurry to get home, when we came upon toilet seats. Hubby and the teenage boy have complained forever about the upstairs toilet seat, saying it won’t stay up for them, causing issues when having to pee. So hubby bought a new toilet seat and because the upstairs bathroom is considered to be mine, he decided the toilet seat would be my present. Oh will the joy never end!
Toilet Seat
Once at home, we both collapsed on our respective couches to watch a movie. Again another bonus for date night, the movie channel was showing 10,000 BC a 4.9/10 star movie! Being so thrilled with the movie, I naturally started tweeting. Finally something interesting! @CanadianDadBlog was having a #UnicornChat. Now could there be anything more exciting than unicorns? As I read the tweets, I realized I really knew nothing of unicorns, but hubby was here to help!

Please ignore the obvious grammar mistakes, I was typing on my Blackberry.
Noah's Ark tweet

Then there was this one:

I also had a real kick out of the #UnicornChat, it had added that extra “oomph” to date night! Thank you @CanadianDadBlog