Monday, May 2, 2011

nets in trees

I could have told you the proper name of this kid activity. It called a parcabout. But it wouldn't make much sense. Nets in trees is more accurate.

In the park in our town they have a parcabout. We never really understood what it was. . . . and then it closed for the winter.
Somehow over the winter the kids figured out that parcabout means fun. Kids are smart this way.
Fortunately the parcabout opened up right when our friends the DesRosiers came to visit in April. I bet they were skeptical, but they are good sports and they went.

Well, it turns out that the parcabout is not only kid friendly, it is great for the adults. Great in the sense that you don't see your children. The children are so stunned that they are allowed to climb around in nets way up high in trees that they forget all about their parents. Their parents get to sit and have a coffee and forget all about the children.
We have 7 children between the two families. That is a lot of kids. It is hard to forget about 7 children.

I am now a fan of the parcabout. For a little, while on a pleasant afternoon, we forgot all about the kids.

Here is a picture of all the kids.

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Katie's 12th birthday

Katie turned 12 at the end of March.
Here are pictures from her French birthday.

It is always good when there is laughter around the table.
Happy Birthday Kate. You are much loved.

Friday, April 1, 2011

Jessica and Fran

My niece, Jessica, and her friend, Fran, are traveling around Europe for a few months. They stopped in to see us for a few days.

One of the things we did was go to Vouvant, a nearby town. Vouvant is a cute little town but it is known around here as the town where all the British vacation.
The cute little cafe where we had lunch was owned by a British couple.


While Rod was here, Joey wanted to play pickle.

Joey started taking it seriously. He even put on his baseball uniform from last summer. Yes, Joey brought his baseball uniform. Someone should really supervise that child when he is packing.

My niece, Jessica, and her friend, Fran, visited us for a few days. They were talked into playing pickle. I think they played it every day they were here.

Jessica playing pickle with the little Frenchy neighbors.

Thursday, March 31, 2011

last day in Paris

On our last day in Paris, Rod took Joey to the Army museum.
I took the girls shopping on the Champs-Elysees.
We got off the Metro and voila! Ellie immediately found a Disney store. Then she found a McDonalds. Do not underestimate that little girl. She got something from the Disney store and she got french fries from McDonalds. She has her priorities. And, apparently, I am a big sucker. Good to know.

I still can't believe that the Disney store is the first store we went into on the Champs-Elysees.

I snapped the next pictures of the girls while we were waiting for Rod and Joey to finish at the Army museum. Rod had a hard time getting Joey away from all the armor and swords. A really hard time. I think he only got Joey out of there because he is bigger. And Joey knows he is bigger.

We all met up at the Arc de Triomphe. Climbed all the steps to the top. Had a good look around and then said our goodbyes to Paris.
Goodbye Paris. We love you.

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

the worst park ever

On our 3rd day in Paris we decided no museums, no history.
Just a park and ice cream.
We told the kids the plan and they were excited.
I had heard there was a fun kids play area in the Luxembourg gardens. I had never seen it so I didn't know what to expect.

When we got to the Luxembourg Gardens, Joey and Ellie looked around and they both declared it was the worst park EVER.
My first thought was. . . oh crappy crap. I have promised the kids fun at the park, where is the fun stuff!!
Finally we found it. Mind you, it probably only took 10 minutes. But 10 minutes can be a long time with certain children. You know, the children who keep repeating that it is the worst park ever.
So here are pictures of the worst park ever. Don't the kids look miserable? My poor, poor children.

See this red playground toy? It spins you around and you can hit your head on the big piece in the middle or you can fall off. The danger, I mean, the possibilities are endless. So of course it was a hit with the kids.

After the park we walked past Notre Dame. Ask the kids if they remember it. When they give you a blank look, ask them about the spinning thing. The thing where you spin around and around and try for dear life to hold on. Now that, they will remember. Notre Dame is somewhere in the background.

Then we went over to Ile St-Louis.
And we got ice cream.
I will admit that we went to Berthillon. I heard a lot of people telling me that I HAD to get Berthillon ice cream. Like it was magic powder or something. So finally, I have had Berthillon ice cream. It was good but I am still here. I was not floated into space or anything.

Ile St.Louis is so stinking cute. All the little specialty shops.

Then the kids wanted to go back to the play area in the park. No one got hurt the first time so they wanted to go back. You know, the worst park ever.
Not only did the kids get more time in the play area, they also played soccer with some Frenchies. Rod, Joey and sometimes Gabi played a pickup game of soccer (I wonder if pickup is the right word. If not, I am sure I will be mocked)

Friday, March 25, 2011


I was worried about losing the kids in the Louvre Museum. It is just so big and if one of the kids got lost, I wasn't sure how we would ever find them.
(We have lost Gabi at Disney world. Then we lost her at ... oh never mind, this is a long list. Our parenting skills are not very good in this area.)
So the fact that we didn't lose any kids made it a successful outing.
Score one for the parents!

So how did the kids react to seeing all this priceless artwork?
They fought over taking pictures. Each child had to have a camera or cell phone. And they were so slow walking through each room. Rod and I were saying things like "we have 892 more rooms to get through, PICK UP THE PACE."
Do you know what children do when you tell them to pick up the pace? I think they come to a dead stop. And then take another photo.

Here is Joey's photo of the Mona Lisa. He was so proud of himself that he could get to the front of the crowd. He could push past the 75 people taking pictures of the Mona Lisa so he could get his own crappy, um I mean fabulous, photo of the Mona Lisa.
Here is the masterpiece.

If you want to see the other 8 photos he took of the Mona Lisa, just let me know.

It may be a wonderful museum, but a girl needs a break.

Can we dance in here?

At some point, maybe after 4 hours, we decided to leave. On the way to finding our way out of the museum, we passed things like the next picture. You know, just the Venus de Milo. That old thing.
Is the picture blurry? Or was is just my eyes that were blurry?

Oh look, Gabi is taking a photo. I wonder what she will do with the other 900 photos from the Louvre on her camera.

We did find our way out. Here is a family photo after our day at the Louvre.

See, I still have all 4 of my children.

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Eiffel Tower

Rod flew into Paris on March 9th.
The kiddies and I took the train up to Paris to meet him.
First up? The Eiffel Tower.
All the kids have ever wanted to see in France was the Eiffel Tower. It only took me 6 months to get them there. But we did it. We went to the Eiffel Tower. We even went to the tippy top.