Decorating the Christmas tree

Tree with kids

And yet… I still decorate with them every year.  I go in with dreamy expectations of a picture perfect event and there is always a moment like this where I am tearing my hair out.  This year the boys were wrestling, not fighting granted, but wrestling in front of the tree as we are trying to decorate it.

So, why do I keep doing with them?  Because they love it.  And in the end, Christmas is about the kids.  And really, I love it too, broken ornaments and all.  It is the making of wonderful Christmas memories, even if they are not facebook worthy! 🙂


Berry Picking with Kids

Berry picking with kids

Despite the lapse between expectations and reality, I still go berry picking with my kids multiple times during berry season.  I like a good deal just as much as the next person and U-pick is always substantially cheaper than picked berries.

More than that though, I love the nostalgia of it all.  My mom took all of of us kids berry picking when we were little and one of my first jobs was berry picking with my fabulous younger sister. (I do remember more raspberry fights than cash in my pocket though!) My yobo and I have picked together with the kids every year. He is a great picker and has our buckets full in no time!  My girls have become excellent pickers as well and the boys in the comic are still in training. Soon I can just sit in the shade with some lemonade and watch them pick…. right?  🙂

Best of all, my freezer is full of fresh berries!

Osaka Sushi – near Children’s Hospital BC

Osaka Sushi, South Cambie Street Pictures

If you ever find yourself in the unfortunate situation of being at Children’s hospital in Vancouver, whether for an appointment or an extended stay, you may find yourself wishing for more than coffee shops and cafeterias.  When you need some fresh air but don’t want to travel far, you are in luck.  There is a decent sushi shop just blocks away.  The exercise might do you well, the walk is good for body and mind and the food is better than the vending machine.

We had the regrettable opportunity to visit Children’s hospital more than once in the last little while and needed a place to go and eat.  When I asked the six small children in my care what they were interested in for dinner, they all yelled ‘sushi’.  I was proud considering the options I had presented included pizza and Mcdonalds.  So on recommendation from the ICU doctor, we made our way (read: ran) a few blocks down to Oak and King Edward and found Osaka Sushi.  The kids rushed in, I smiled sweetly and we piled all 7 of us in a little booth.

We ordered a copious amount of cucumber rolls and teriyaki chicken rolls and the children gobbled them all down. I am not sure if they are the most discerning eaters, but they all gave them thumbs up.  What is not to like about cucumber or chicken rolled up in rice and dunked in way too much dipping sauce? I ordered a dynamite roll which was OK.  I don’t like lettuce in my rolls, but aside from that it was good.  My sister joined the party and she had a spider roll which was also average.

The service was quick and friendly.  They accommodated a whole bunch of munchkins and quickly made extra rolls when ordered.  The restaurant was busy and by the time my sister joined us, there was a line up out side.  So either all the doctors recommend this place, or it is just a local favourite.

wasabi nose trickMy sister arrived in just in time for the post dinner antics of our 6 year olds putting wasabi up their noses.  🙂

Sleep… aahhh!

Sleep... aahh!

My kids are notoriously bad sleepers.  As babies, they are up multiple times a night and even as toddlers (and school aged kids) they find reasons wake up and wake me up in the night whether it is an itchy back or a wet bed or a bad dream or the need for drink of water.  My baby is not such a baby anymore but it is rare for me to sleep a whole 8 hours uninterrupted!

My friend tells me it’s just because I am too nice in the night.  🙂 Do you get 8 hours a night?  If so, what’s your secret?  If not, are kids your excuse too?

* I just noticed a typo in the comic… I’ll blame it on the perpetual lack of sleep 😉

Korea & China trip – from a kids perspective

Traveling with kids

I can’t believe that it was a year ago already that we boarded the plane and headed over the Pacific Ocean to China and then Korea!

The kids were determined that they wanted to go and see their Halmoni and had brainstormed fabulous ideas for making money to pay for the tickets.  We had a garage sale, the kids collected pop cans, we brought things to the scrap metal depot and they had lemonade stands.  Kyah even wrote letters to the major airlines asking for assistance.  The kids helped raise over $2000 in the Korea fund towards the trip and that experience made the big event even more meaningful for us all!

After the trip, Kyah put together a power point presentation for her grade four class. The teacher let her share the highlights of the trip including things she thought were interesting and unusual.

If you would like to see the trip through the eyes of a 10 year old, click and enjoy!

My trip to Korea and China

and the saving continues for the next big trip! 🙂

Yukiya sushi restaurant – Harrison Hot Springs, BC

Harrison hot springs

We had a little Christmas get-a-way with the family over the holidays to this beautiful place, Harrison Hot Springs resort.  It is situated on Harrison lake nestled between the mountains near Agassiz BC, 1.5 hours from Vancouver.  Isn’t it gorgeous?

paul SepDec 2014 155

We went out for dinner one night a block from the hotel, right on the lake front, to Yukiya Sushi. It is a little restaurant and it was very busy. The service was great and the owners were super friendly Koreans – aren’t they all?  friendly and Korean!? 🙂

We ordered an assortment of rolls and they were devoured quickly. The teriyaki chicken rolls were just chicken rolled up and I prefer my teriyaki rolls to have something else added to them, but they were a hit with the kids and the owner kindly gave us extra. The other rolls were your basic rolls, but the star of the night was the dynamite roll.

dynamite rollteriyaki rolls

It was a delicious combination of prawn and yam tempura, avocado and cucumber.  I love yams and this roll won my heart with the deep fried yams! The second best part was that it was not stuffed full of crab.  I admit that crab is not my favourite ingredient in sushi rolls, which is why I don’t usually order California rolls! But the dynamite roll was dynamite!

The only draw back about this place was that it was a little pricey, but given the view, it was worth the extra money.

Say “sushi! 🙂

yukiya
Yukiya Sushi on Urbanspoon