02 July 2013

A Beach Blast, a Birthday, and More Than Enough Fireworks

True North, Strong and Free
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I hope you all had a great long weekend.
Ours was mostly lovely, with a few moments of drama thrown in to keep the universe in balance.
But mostly lovely.

We kicked off the weekend with J's first-ever beach volleyball tournament.
The weather was great for it -- we couldn't ask for better. So excited that the rain held off!
 I'd never been to Ashbridges Bay or Woodbine Beach before. How gorgeous!
I wish I'd known I was just steps from such spectacular beaches this whole time. I'd be much more tan.

Woodbine Beach
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Speaking of tan, J. got burnt to rat-shit.
Despite multiple sunscreen applications, his tender English/Irish skin couldn't take the heat. Poor thing.
He's been mad at me since Sunday because I
I couldn't help it.
He looks like he's wearing a reverse shirt.
Mother of the Year Award, right here.

I was not allowed to snap photographic evidence, but you can imagine.

Sunday was pretty low-key. Errands and the like. The usual.
We treated the little one to a movie and a popcorn dinner (which is the best kind of dinner).
Monsters University.
Our favourite is Art, because he "can't go back to jail!"

Art: Fan Favourite. These fans, anyway.
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Monday was a bit more complicated.
It started off well. We slept in a little, then baked muffins together, and cupcakes with homemade icing.
Fingers and beaters were licked. The dogs drooled all over the floor.
Mid-afternoon we wandered over to the fairgrounds. Milton does a big production on Canada Day.
Bouncy castles, sand pits, mini carnival rides, a rock climbing wall, a petting zoo...
The smell of cotton candy in the air, and french fries, and grease and manure...
Four dollar lemon water, neon light-sticks and screaming babies...

Like any other small town fair, I expect. You get the idea.

A good time was had by all (I *think*) until A. spied a stuffed blue bear at one of the carnival games.
She had to have it.
She did not understand why $40 was too much for a cheap-ass blue bear.
She would not let it go, and sulked for an hour before I lost my shit.

Sometimes it takes every ounce of strength and integrity I have not to abandon my children around town.

We went home crying. Both of us.
Locked ourselves in the car after the boys went inside (with the family from out of town).
We duked it out (verbally, not literally).
Set off some emotional fireworks.

She's my "difficult" child. I try to think of her as "character-building."
Just when I think I've got this parenting thing figured out, she pulls the rug out from underneath me.
She doesn't mean to. She's a good girl; an amazing girl. I'm lucky to have her.
She has a lot to teach me. But sometimes the learning is a tough slog.
Lessons are hard. They're exhausting.
They give us both headaches.

It ended up all right.
She has some work to do on her attitude.
I have even more work to do, on her attitude. On her whole outlook, actually.

Like I said: just when I think I've got this parenting thing figured out...

We recovered in time to watch the real fireworks, as a family.

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This is our ninth year in celebrating in Milton.
The kids are bigger, the lawn chairs are newer and the show is better each year, but the tradition stays the same.