easter long weekend DAY 1

the long weekend is here.  my childhood days would be at full capacity participating in spring concerts that told the story of the resurrection.  there would be fun crafts, chocolates, 5 straight days of attending mass, and probably at least one large dinner at either or both of my parents' sides.  my high school days consisted of being forced to attend these masses followed by either one or two of the same dinners.  as i entered post-secondary, it seemed these dinners tapered off.  my dad's passing was an obvious contribution to less family affairs on his side, but i can't put my finger on the reasons for my mom's.  is it that my cousins and i are less close?  is it the aunts and uncles?  are we tired and/or lazy?  

i wrote a post a few months ago while figuring out pre-school for moses.  i never posted it as i know religion is a heated topic, but this religious long weekend has brought up a lot of these feelings again.  i was born into a religion and left it.  there is nothing you can do to make someone have faith.  if faith is there, it's there, if it's not, it just is not.

i considered getting them baptized in hopes of enrolling them into Sacred Heart which is the private Catholic school Kevin attended.  i know it's not hurting anyone, and now that i am passed my early and mid-twenties, i am more able to chill out and not fight it if i HAD to have them baptized.  i just do not support bringing them up in a religion where i am not a participant.  i considered doing it through clenched teeth, thinking that having been brought up Catholic was an enjoyable experience until i opted out in grade 7.  i didn't find it over religious and i actually look back on it with fond memories of feeling comforted.  

easter, like valentine's day, has been turned into something it isn't.  of course everyone likes bunnies, colourful eggs, chocolates (every holiday is a perfect excuse for chocolates...), and all that cute stuff, but that's not what it initially is about.  part of me feels like a fraud for doing any of this fun stuff with the kids.  i have to admit, i wish someone COULD give me back my manmade faith so i could go back to feel like being part of something.  so i could go back to what it used to be like...  it's not that i don't have some belief system.  it just feels like if it isn't universally recognized or defined in a dictionary, then it is not valid.  and i don't know how to go about instilling a non-recognized spirituality in my kids.  

growing up and starting a family is challenging.  i am no longer the kid or the teen being taken along for all these mandatory masses and family gatherings...  now, i am the one in charge of creating traditions for my new family!

so.  

today was gorgeous.  kevin had the day off.  that's two huge points for the first day of a long weekend!  also, the fact that i have been scheduled to only work 10:30am-3:30pm on sunday has taken a massive chunk of stress from my mind.  it seemed the rest of tsawwassen had the same idea in mind, including michelle!  we both decided it was the perfect day to spend the first of many more days at the beach!  i was very excited as it would be chloe's first "real" day at the beach!  i say "real" day because she was only 6-8 months last year on her first visits, and i'm sure she has no recollection of those visits.


she's walking to the beach!


i fell in love when i saw the new concession stand/change rooms they have been building!


the last time we were here it was just mounds of dirty


i have a feeling this new facility is going to bring a huge crowd this summer...


little chlo!


super stoked



efficiently and patiently scooping shovel after shovel of sand until bucket was full...


me and momo!


...then dumping it on herself


went for a private walk to find lovely beach things to take home


shells


rocks 
(huge ones... she was very particular and very angry when i tried to take them out!
she also refused to let me carry the very heavy bucket)


i let her wade into a little pool of water


immediately after this photo she fell on her butt


she found a spot back at the park to eat some snacks


back at the home front, i whipped up some chocomole for weekend snacks.
i had the most excellent idea to mix in some crispy rice cereal to give it a fun crunchy texture
it went from healthy "nutella" spread to healthy chocolate rice krispie squares!



kevin threw together a gluten free cheese loaf that turned out to be incredibly delicious!
as you can see, a little chocomole monster is impatiently requesting over and over to try the bread



seriously, my empty religion feelings were totally sideswiped but having so many great things just fall together today.  as i was photoshopping/cropping these photos, saara and i were chatting on fbook and made impromptu plans for a cauliflower fried rice and hotdogs and chips dinner at her place.  i prepped the cauliflower and headed out to pick up our first bottle of Pimm's for the year while kevin finished up the rest of the recipe.

got dressed as if it were summer, packed up and walked over to saara's.  she had the gingerale and ice, i threw them in with the Pimm's and slices of cucumbers and we mowed down.  







the kids were fantastic.  not just well behaved, but also very comical and entertaining.  it was crazy to actually just sit at the table with saara and kevin while the three kids played nicely together in leila's bedroom.  it was like being in an alternate universe.  we never thought this day would come.  our long long days of hauling 22lbs of crawling baby passed slowly, and yet i can hardly remember them now.  


the  last of the evening sunset melted into the cool air as we walked back home


these little royal blue shorts are another of my H&M spring/summer collection
they also come in a few other colours but i can only remember a khaki version...



doing star jumps with moses


i am so thankful for all the wonderful mom friends i have made here in tsawwassen.  you guys have made these early years so much more manageable with your kindness, thoughtfulness, generosity, and hilarious sense of humour.  thank you for all the help and support!  i love you guys!!!!



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