The short version: we've been SO busy! I'm sure there is a lot I'll miss, but I wanted to get something out there.
- My parents are visiting from Maine and Allan has been taking his last week of vacation while they are here.
- They bought me a refurbished Dell computer and a flat screen monitor for Christmas!!! Allan and my dad have been setting it up and transferring all my stuff for the past few days. A very awesome Christmas present - my old computer kept crashing multiple times a day. They also have been doing maintenance and such to the other computers in the house.
- They also brought along my "new" cell phone from Gail. Thank you Gail!!! It's been invaluable already during my parents visit here!
- Tuesday we went downtown Vancouver to the American Consulate to start the process of getting the M's their USA Certificates of Birth Abroad. Security is very tight and it was quite the operation. Megan protested/tantrumed almost the entire couple of hours we were in there. We have finished the preliminary questionnaire's now and have our case-specific instruction sheets. I will be able to complete all those forms/instructions and then go in without the children to finish the process. (This after I get all the required documents such as having to get the certified copies of all 5 M's "registration of live birth" forms from Victoria at $55 each, obtaining MY high school transcripts for residency proof past age 14 years and so on.)
After we have those birth abroad certificates we can then apply for USA passports and social security cards for the M's and plan to do so next summer when we are in the USA. We will also have to get the twins their Canadian passports as we will need photo id for them for that trip.
- After the consulate and some well-deserved lunch we took my parents to the Vancouver Aquarium. My Dad has NEVER been to an Aquarium before, ever! My mom only once a long time ago. So we were really glad to have made it there, we even caught the Dolphin show - Spinnaker has 2 new dolphin friends there now!
- Maddy was SO excited about more dolphins! As well as Grandmommy and Grandpa's visit. In fact she's been so excited that she barely sits or stands still for any length of time!
- Wednesday Michael and Melissa had eye exams. Their vision is still fine, but Michael did turn up with pink-eye. So now we are treating him as well as everyone else just preventatively to try and keep it from just passing back and forth. I also took my broken frames in to see if we could find new frames to put my lenses into and to order some contact lenses.
Yes, another sad tale in my glasses saga. After getting new lenses/new prescription this summer - Michael had knocked my glasses off in the pool and both lenses were scratched and had to be replaced. Then Maribeth snapped my frames in half. This was followed by Megan and Maddy getting into my boxes of contact lenses opening them, and then in Megan's case - CHEWING on them. I think some were swallowed, as they were never accounted for. I was stuck wearing a pair of glasses with hopelessly warped frames dating back to the infant Melissa days!
So there I was: well, well, well past my yearly insurance limit. Fortunately Holly took pity on me and gave me 2 pairs of disposable contact lenses there on the spot and found a pair of frames to transfer the lenses from my broken frames into; lenses not yet a month old. She also gave me a discount on the frames.
- My mom has been spending a LOT of time working with Melissa and Michael on their reading practice! She's impressed with how much progress they have made since she last saw them and I'm impressed with how much progress they have made working with her over the past few days!
- I spent the morning at a Robeez focus group at their offices/distribution centre in Burnaby, BC. It was an interesting and enjoyable experience. However, I had to sign a confidentiality agreement before participating so I can't actually discuss the discussion. The good news is that they gave me two free pairs of Robeez for my time in coming out.
Allan says, "It's about time they gave you something - you've bought so much from them."
And so I have: 20+ pairs is what I put on the survey I filled out on their website a few months back with my last order. The survey which likely caused them to contact me to be part of the focus group. I picked size 2-3 years red Robeez with the Canadian maple leaf. I'm hoping they will fit the twins for Canada day next year. They just don't need anymore Robeez (or any kind of shoes) in their current sizes.
- The twins have been sick the past few days. We thought it was just teething, as they ARE teething, but now Michael is sick. So it looks like we've picked up a bug somewhere. I'm hoping to stay well this time around as I'm barely over my last month-long cold/cough/sinus infection/bronchitis. The twins took a while to warm up to Grandpa and Grandmommy but are now doing just fine!
- The first FVS concert of the season is on Sunday and my parents and Melissa are attending. In addition to that, I was offered a PAYING gig playing cello with a string trio being put together to accompany a Lyrical Choir for several dinner concerts in December!!!!