Arnold's email - July 1st:
Friday we got up pretty early and went upstairs and watched some old Inspector gadget episodes, we hung out until Grandpa and Grandma came out of their room, we had a waffle breakfast then went downstairs to play with Lego for a bit. I helped Mom and Dad pack the car a bit and we were on our way to Jason and Sasha's.
We started out around 9:00 and headed for Edmonton, then went around to a service station not far from the old Archery place in Spruce Grove. There we stopped for Gas and Kyler got a snack. We talked about what we wanted to do and decided to head to the old farm in Busby for a while to see what it looked like, we figured that it would only add an extra 30 minutes to the drive.
When we got to the farm it looked like nothing had changed, all the buildings are still there, most of the old equipment is still on the yard. But under closer inspection you notice that everything has aged and that some stuff is not the same anymore. We rolled onto the yard and talked with the owner, introduced ourselves, she offered us a tour, so we accepted. She told us that they have converted the place to a horse riding arena. They have 9 horses, we saw two of them. Van Goghs sold out the milking parlour, so everything in there had been ripped out and that building was a mess, then the back building where the cows used to stay has had sand poured over the floor and is the main arena now. All the small pastures for the cows up the hill were empty and green. the old calf barn has been turned into a Equine medical area, she had a 1 year old Painted Pony in there with a hoof problem and a Tennesse walker with a sun/skin irritation. Any way we talked a bit about the Van Gogh's and the farm and then left, we'd spent 30-45 minutes there, which was a nice stretch of the legs, and K got to see horses and goats (they use goats to mow the lawn, they had maybe 30 of them).
We headed to WhiteCourt next, Kyler and I played some tic tac toe, and slept, then when we got closer I read him the email you sent us, then we started talking about lunch, Kyler said he wanted a McDonald's toy just like his brother, and Grandma said that would not be a problem, so we went to Lunch at MCD in Whitecourt. Then it was on the road again, some more games and reading and sleeping. As we got close to ValleyView, we called Jason to find out where they were, they had gone to the town's Canada Day party, so we met them there. When we arrived Kasmira noticed Mom and Dad's HHR right away and came sprinting up to us, we had a quick introduction and we sent her back to the play area to show Kyler around. They ran past Jason and Chris as they came to see us. Kyler and Kasmira went to one of the three bouncy castles they had setup at no charge, and we followed to watch as Kyler learned who his cousins were in the crowd of kids. After a little while on the castles, Kyler asked to go to the face painting, where he got a green Maple leaf on his cheek. Then he wanted to try the park for a while. He was not engaging his cousins alot at this point, but he had met them and seemed to like them.
After the visit to the park he and I returned to the rest of the family and we were told that Jason and Chris needed to go to the shop to get some things for the next days' activities, so we all packed into our cars, and we headed to the shop. When we arrived, we went for a tour of the shop, the kids played on a forklift and oogled at the massive tools around the place. Then we went outside, first stop was a big green articulating tractor that kids climbed into to look at. Then one truck with a sleeper and one without. While the kids were in the trucks, Chris was setting up one of the picker trucks, and when the kids were through their second truck Chris was ready for them with the crane. Kyler was invited up and Chris taught Kyler how to operate it, Grandpa held the hook and Kyler pulled him a few feet from the ground. The girls took turns on the crane as well.
Chris put away the Crane and the kids went into one of the sleeper cabs, they convinced Jason to take them for a spin around the yard in the truck. Chris finished putting the Crane away and we all met up in front of the line of trucks. Kyler asked Chris if he could go for a drive in the big green tractor from before, and Chris agreed, so all 4 kids climbed up into the cab and Chris took them around the yard. On their spin around the yard, they noticed the scissor lift, so they had to try that next, Jason took everyone except mom and Chris up the scissor lift to nearly 4 stories high, Kyler didn't even bat an eye at the height, we had to scold him for trying to climb the railing.
From there, it was over to the rino and the bobcat, Mom and Chris were driving the rino and brought it over to his trailer for loading. I took K onto the bobcat and taught him how to control that machine, he picked up on it right away and was driving around in no time. At this point Jason hitched up the trailer to a truck and Chris had rolled the rino up onto the bed in prep for transport. We arranged that K and I would go with Jason and Kasmira to town to get Jason's other bobcat and Mom and Dad would take one girl and Chris would take the last. this meant that Kyler got to ride in a pickup truck pulling a loaded trailer which he thought was cool.
When we got home, we mostly chilled, had some drinks, and the kids played for a while, mainly on the trampoline and out on the lawn. The girls went to bed around 8 but K showed no sign of being tired, so we let him stay up for a while. Chris and Jason took out their big Lego sets from legoland and let Kyler play with them. He really enjoyed that, especially one of the big cranes. He played nicely for nearly 45 minutes, then I was ready for bed, so I took him down with me and made him go to bed.
Miranda's email - July 1st:
Shortly after Q came to visit (think 3am?). His "tummy couldn't sleep alone". So he snuggled right in beside me and just about killed me!! I was/am so tired this morning. I got up at 5am and drugged myself and went back to bed. Q was still there and wouldn't leave. So I told him tonight he is sleeping alone in his room. I can't do this! I'm getting no sleep, I feel like my whole sinus cold is back on my right side of my face and I'm so grumpy.
Thankfully Q played ok by himself (after waking up the whole family) finally Papa went downstairs with him around 7am or so and Jack around 7:30am. I was up around 8:45 am and went downstairs. I had some breakfast and responded to you.
We all got on our red clothing and headed out the the parade. It was fun. Q was ready to go home quick and we didn't get the good spot we had last year (we were in the sun) but fun. Next year we are going to go early and put our chairs out along the side of the road :)
The parade was a blast then we went right home. Dad did some fancy driving with the car to get us out of our spot! We got home and had a swim! What a good thing it was SO hot. I had sweat dripping down my back.
After our swim Papa brought out Q's lunch order and he ate while I "worked out" in the pool. When he was done we went upstairs and had a nap.
Our nap finished around 4pm and we went downstairs and got the last few things ready for the party and Q wanted to go swimming again. I refused to wear my "family only" bathing suit so I borrowed one from Nana.
We swam for a bit then got out when everyone arrived. Q and I got changed and visited with everyone. We had supper and then dessert and everyone left. It was such a good meal, steak, chicken, potato salad, normal salad, cheese and tomatoes, yummy yummy yummy!
Once everyone left Jess came over and we went for a swim in the pool (2 hours) and then had dessert and headed out for the fireworks. We got there in time to have some fun before.
Mom and I had found small sparklers the day before and some glow stick wrist bands so we played with those. It took a bit to get Q to want to play with one but he did eventually. Thankgoodness! We got some cute photos of him! And Jess and I got to feel like kids again! I did burn my fingers, my pants have a hole in them and my leg is burnt. It hurts alot!
Anyway we are home now after a snack and drink and moving Q's bed in here. He couldn't sleep alone and instead of dealing with another crappy night I'm having him in here on a mattress and me in my own bed. I'm not 100% happy but hopefully it works. Mom agreed to take him tomorrow night so I can get a full nights sleep ALONE!