Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Happy Halloween!

I bet few people will see this as it has been a very long time since any posts were made, but here we are in costume.

Wednesday, July 04, 2007

First Meal

First Meal, originally uploaded by Jamie Hide.

Tuesday, July 03, 2007


Cohen at Grandma G's...

Friday, June 29, 2007

New Layout

Yes, you are at the right place. I have been thinking about a big change like this for a while. Finally with the help of grandma and aunt's help, I've had enough time to play guess-until-it-works with the new blogger layout.

Karla was a little reluctant to move away from the original look of our blog, but I liked the idea of adding a few new features to the blog. Besides she's taking a nap right now.

Across the top, there is a pretty photo that I plan to change from time to time. This one is Fernie, in honor of that being our new home. Above the photo are two sets of tabs. These are links to take you to pages that might be of interest to you. Immediately above the photo is a set of links related to our family. Higher up, on the right, are a few websites that are of general interest.

So, what do you think? Comments are welcome.

Tuesday, June 26, 2007

Picnic at the Park

Here are a few pictures from our picnic at Prince's Island with Uncle Jeff

Aysha Helps Her Brother

Jeff, Aysha, Duck

Aysha Loves Apples

Tanning Slide?


Cohen Rides

Aysha on Horseback

Thursday, June 21, 2007

We're Back

After one very long day of travel, we are back in Canada. The trip was mostly good. Both little ones were well behaved. Aysha slept most of the last legm but Cohen got a little upset with being confined to yet another plane seat for hours. The trip went off without any major disasters - one torn bag (little, if anything appears to be missing) and lots of waiting.

Our expert packing got us as far as New York without problem, where we had to shift two pounds out of a 52 pound bag into the 48 pound bag. When I asked if I really had to move the weight, the check in agent told me that the overall balance of the plane might be affected if I left it.

Today we are opening and reorganizing the bags to see us through our three week Tour de Germaines before heading down to Fernie when we can finally unpack everything once and for all.

I rode Jeff's winter bike out the the Canadian Border Security office today to do the paperwork to clear our shipment. It took me 45 minutes each way. It was great to be back on the bike, to be whistling through the cool morning air appreciating the little floating cottony seeds in the sunlight. Karla told me it was completely impractical to ride when I could have taken Jeff's truck, but it was just too marvelous to resist. The ride home was not quite as marvelous owing to the fact that my behind was aching by the end of the ride and my legs were feeling the two years of tropical lifestyle.

Friday, June 15, 2007

Really Going

Yesterday, after almost 20 hours of work over three days by Karla and a few by myself, we sent 13 boxes, including the treadmill, Aysha's bed and my bike to Canada. It was unbelievable how difficult it was. Rules needed to be bent all over just so we could get our stuff out. The final step was a three and a half hour inspection of everything. The police opened up all our boxes and emptied them onto the table and looked through each item while the box was flattened and reconstructed inside out. After that we got to repack the bag and then it was banded and wrapped in cellophane. So finally, at 5:30, we got home.

Now it all feels like we are really going. The past few days have been so focused on getting the shipment sent that we haven't had much time to think about other things. Now the house is empty - almost. It's painted white like it was after we arrived, and all the original ugly decorations have been replaced.

Sunday, June 10, 2007

Getting There

It's Sunday afternoon and we're done the first phase of packing. It's really time to leave now. We've painted the apartment back to all white and re-hung the ugly paintings that were here when we arrived. It only slightly resembles home now.

Aside from the treadmill and Aysha's bed, all the boxes are packed to send by cargo to Canada. We think that we have left about what we can take on the plane with us. Tuesday we will start with the red tape that we need to clear before we can send the cargo.

Yesterday was my birthday and this message

in the shower greeted me when I woke up. We had a meal out with friends and a game of settlers before Aysha got overtired and cried until everyone went home.

For those of you with a bit of time to kill, I discovered this very funny British comedian called Robert Newman who presents a 45 minute long "History of Oil"(the link is to the Google Video of the whole performance). Not only is it very funny, but he makes some very thought provoking points. He's pretty radical, but seems to walk-the-walk. His show is run on bicycle powered lights. He's a new favourite of mine.

In other family news, our first Kiva loan has been all paid off and we have re-lent the money to another person. Benita, our taco seller, paid off her loan, and so we have begun funding Ramon, who wants to take his grocery business on the road. Both are in Mexico. Our Asian (Cambodia) and African (Kenya), are being paid back more slowly over 12 and 18 month terms instead of the 6 months term in Mexico.

Only four days of school left - we'll be home soon!

Sunday, May 27, 2007

More of the New Kid

Here are a few more pictures of the new Kid. I took these last week, but haven't had the time or energy to post until today. Each time I have to relearn how to do it (I was never a great memorizer), and the logic of how to upload pictures from camera to photo-shop to blogspot hasn't quite sunk in yet either!

Cohen at nearly four months of age loves to stand. He has been able to support his weight on his legs for some time now.

Jamie says he thinks Cohen will go from lying to walking, skipping rolling (he hasn’t repeated that since we tried the videos), sitting, and crawling!

Last weekend we had an evening of Karaoke at our apartment. One of the female American teachers brought a microphone to Colombia that plugs into the TV and has a large array of popular songs programmed into it (the words appear on TV). After you sing, the machine even rates how well you did. I scored from as low as 55% to 98% (it really helps if you actually know the words). Jamie scored as low as 12% with “Summer of 69” by Brian Adams (it was picked for him – he hates Brian Adams), but redeemed himself with “I Will Survive.” The following picture shows Cohen just hanging out with dad during the event.

Jamie liked this picture a lot more than the one above. Both he and Cohen look better, but the one above is funnier.

Sunday, May 20, 2007

Pool Time

Aysha gets ready for the poolside

Cohen and Mom

The swimsuit edition

Stay back!

Keep your hands off my baby!

Two kids on the chaise-lounge

Sunday, April 29, 2007

Cohen Rolls Over (or The Grandma Special)


Yesterday, Jamie’s Mom called to say that they found Granddad dead in the morning. He was on the floor and his bed had not been slept in.

Our world is altered. Yet Aysha and Cohen demand so much that it is only in the quiet moments, when they are asleep, that grief seeps in and we realize how much. They are sleeping now, and my way of dealing with grief is to write…

I am flooded with memories. Granddad taking pictures at our wedding with his digital camera – something he had well before most people. His ease with technology amazed me. He knew his way around computers, phones, DVDs – almost any new technology, while people of my parents’ generation struggle to learn the basics. Once we had a conversation about musicals, and a couple of days later Granddad showed up with a CD copy of “Jesus Christ Super Star” that he had made from his records, and a perfect replica of the booklet that went along with it carefully hand cut and bound! That sort of thoughtfulness, generosity, and creativity, was typical of Granddad.

I’m picturing Granddad working on his garage, building alternative stairs into the basement, fixing or building whenever he thought of a way to make an improvement. And I’m hearing Granddad then telling us about each project in about a hundred times more detail than anyone really cared to have.

While most 80 year olds found it difficult going for a lap around the neighborhood mall and out for coffee, Granddad was out on the ski hill!

I’m remembering how proud he looked on our wedding day, and how his eyes lit up a few years later when we told him I was pregnant. His hugs and kisses were always unreserved and wholly accepting. From the first day I met him, I felt welcome and soon loved.

I remember the moment Granddad really took note of Aysha. After a walk around Fernie with Aysha, Jamie’s Mom, and my Mom (who was visiting at the time), we ended up at Granddad’s. Six month old Aysha was being particularly smiley, and as Granddad gazed into her little face he said, “She really is a doll, isn’t she?” I knew that he’d first seen how truly beautiful his great granddaughter was. I feel sad that he will never meet Cohen, whose middle name is Granddad’s own.

This coming year, when we will be living in Fernie, our lives will be less complete than they would have been with Granddad with us. I’m grateful for all the richness Granddad has added to my life, and I’m grieving the loss of that richness for the future, not only for me, but for Jamie, Aysha, and Cohen.

Sunday, April 22, 2007

Literary Hour

Aysha and Dad share a story. I shot this one on the same day as the last one with Aysha. After we took the first one, she watched it and asked for more. So we read a book together.

Saturday, April 21, 2007

Cohen's Debut

Cohen wanted to join the party too. He's not the only one, though. Since I posted the first video, both Uncle Jeff and Paco, Grandma Bernie and Grandma Linda's puppy dog, have made video visits via email to our family. Thanks for your videos! Aysha loves them (almost as much as the ones of herself).

Thursday, April 19, 2007

Aysha goes...

The second installment (one take)