Here We Go Again!

This blog is like the abandoned amusement park at the edge of town. Most of the time it sits around collecting dust and looking sad, leaving passers-by to wonder if anyone has died there. And then, just when you think someone's going to come along, bulldoze the whole thing and build a new cookie-cutter neighbourhood, the old ferris wheel slowly lurches back to life in the middle of the night. Maybe if I had a van load of teenagers and a talking dog to sort things out, I'd have a working operation on my hands.

So, I left you more than a year ago in buggy Manitoba. We are now back in good old Upper Canada, where life is rather different. I like to start with the bad news and then finish up on a high note, so here's the update:

The title of my blog is no longer entirely accurate. Back in March, we had to have our 16 year-old dog Finnegan put down. Despite having the blood work of a puppy right to the bitter end, he'd been suffering with increasingly severe arthritis since the age of 12, and he wasn't enjoying his life anymore. It's an experience that has clarified a lot for me about issues like assisted death, quality of life, and the importance of listening to my gut. Finnegan's ashes now sit in the sunniest spot in the house, just as he always did. This is how I like to remember him-- a shot from happier times:

To be honest, I'm still not over it, so let's not dwell. Onward and upward!

Relocating from a secluded old farm house in rural Manitoba to a newly-built bungalow in a neighbourhood just outside our nation's capital has definitely taken some getting used to. I love that just about everything is now within walking and biking distance, and that we're so much closer to family. The kids have really gotten to know their cousins, and both have made very smooth transitions to their new schools. The autism funding here is flabbergasting, and we've been keeping very busy running to and from activities, and even when we do need to drive to a nearby town, the scenery alone is worth the price of gas. That said, town living is SO loud! Lawnmowers, chainsaws, sirens--I forgot all about this stuff living in the middle of nowhere! We miss our wonderful neighbours and friends too, but I'd say overall we're very happy where we've landed.

Rather than regale you with paragraph after paragraph about the past year, I'll leave you with a few photos.

The perfect shot detailing the drive from Manitoba to Eastern Ontario. Case of beer wedged between children, cat wandering with impunity all over the car. I'm pretty sure that disposable cup is still on the floor somewhere.

This was our first family selfie after crossing back into Canada. A bit fuzzy--my only excuse is that we were delirious to be back on Canadian soil. Sadly, I did not think to get a photo of the drunk woman asleep in the bread aisle at a Northern Michigan Wal Mart, or the hefty police presence prompted by her afternoon nap. Next time.

No furniture for the first four days in our new home. Luckily, Firstborn inherited my talent for creativity.

Naturally, when you move to the National Capital Region, you high-tail it right over to Parliament for an obnoxious, braggy Facebook photo op.

Therapeutic Riding is one of the many wonderful activities available here for kids with special needs. You can tell by the look on his face, RB is tired of being embarrassed by his mother and her camera.

It turns out that January in Eastern Ontario is no better than January in Manitoba. So we went to Florida!

The Brevard Zoo is a great stop if you're ever in the Orlando area. Peaceful and lovely, and you can pet the giraffes!

Best of all, we have family in Florida, so no staying in hotels. My sister in-law is a photographer, and despite being 36 weeks pregnant during our stay, ran around the beach with her camera to grab us the very first professional family photo we've ever had done. I am so thrilled with it! Getting my youngest looking at the camera AND smiling is nothing short of impossible, but look at that toothy grin!

And that's our year. You're all caught up! The amusement park is back in business!


SO nice to have a post from you again! I'm glad to hear that your move to Ottawa went very well. My, your boys are starting to get all grown up now. Love all the photos! But sorry to hear about poor old Finnegan. However, I'm sure he's chasing rabbits in heaven right now.

Wishing you all the best! Manitoba's loss is Upper Canada's gain.
Unknown said…
Excellent....the blk is back! now can we get you guys back down for another visit?
Very nice to hear from you and that your family is adjusting to your new surroundings. ! I have missed your posts. The boys are getting so big. Memories are the best when having to make difficult decisions about our pets. I'm sure he is running free! Welcome back.
Glad to have you back, even if it is just for the update. I am sorry to hear about Finnegan, but I'm sure he is running free and without pain. The memories will always keep him close.

Thank you for the comment on my post. I took sailing lessons in December and have access to a boat. I agree, being at or on the water is when I am at peace.

Hope to see more of your posts.

I did create a Youtube channel, right now only one video. Stop on over and check it out.
The channel name is: Deep Six Decaf and the title of the video is Our adventure begins...

Have a great weekend!

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