Monday, July 5, 2010

Oh, Canada!!!

Well, here I sit, on my last full day in Canada.  Patrick is finishing up at work so we can go out one more time before I leave.  He is here in Toronto, working for two weeks.  I was fortunate to be able to come and join him for a week!  We have never done anything like this, nor have I ever left my kids for more than 4 days...and I can count on 3 fingers how many times we've done that! 

Patrick and I have not been away since before Jacob died.  It was time.  I was really looking forward to spending some time in the hotel room by myself, while Patrick worked.  Fortunately for us, July 1 was Canada Day, so Patrick was off more than we had planned while I am here.  It has been an amazing trip, but now I am ready to be home with my kids.  

While sharing some of my experiences and thoughts about Canada, I will attempt to entertain you with some pictures of our trip.  Hopefully they won't bore you, although I can't make any promises. 

This was only my third time on an airplane and my first time on an airplane by myself.  It was quite an experience, but if you aren't afraid to ask for directions, it's all good. 

Here, I look like your typical tourist.  Nice.  We were in downtown Toronto, heading toward the CN Tower.  There are MANY people here and they are walking all over the place.  They have a very impressive bus/train system, along with a subway system.  It's not scary downtown...we didn't really see any homeless or drug addicted people.  I found that to be odd.  We walked and walked and walked.  I noticed that there was food everywhere...I mean EVERYWHERE!  Anything you wanted to eat.  What I also noticed was the lack of obese people?  I am assuming that the walking everywhere would account for that.  Don't ask me why I noticed this...I was probably thinking about how there is no way I could walk all the time while on the other hand, if I walked all the time maybe I could lose this 10 year old baby belly??  Random thoughts of a tourist...just sayin.

Here is a picture of my foot, as I fake step onto a glass bottom floor about a million feet above the ground.  I'm not really afraid of heights.  I mean, if you say "Hey, let's climb up to the top of that building", I would say, "okay, let's go".  It doesn't scare me to think about being up high...BUT...once I get to a certain point, my body turns on me and I find myself hanging on the the side of the wall, or crawling on my knees...something attractive and non-embarassing like that.  SO, I was really looking forward to going up the CN Tower.  We were told we HAD to see it and I really wanted to.  But once I got up there, my body stopped cooperating.  It's the weirdest thing ever because my brain is saying "Hey...step onto the glass and take a cool picture" and my body is saying "Hey brain, are you smokin crack??  There's no way in Canada that I'm steppin onto that piece of glass there."  So, I gave Patrick the camera and enjoyed what I could. 

After the tower, we had dinner downtown.  Something else I noticed very quickly was even though there were a ton of people, and many families, we did not see any the first day with more than two children.  I found that very interesting.  Although I can see where maneuvering around town would be very tough with 8 children, I still thought it was odd. 

Another thing was the way the parents treated the children...and vice versa.  The children are running things here in Canada.  (Okay...let me stop here...these are just my observations stemming from the limited time I have been here.  I am no expert and think there must be different areas of Canada where things might be different?)  Anyway, we were eating dinner and there were two couples sitting next to us with 3 children.  The little girl was probably 2 1/2 and the boys were probably 4 and 10.  The little girl started running in circles around the table, squealing as she went.  (My kids aren't allowed to get out of their seat at a restaurant, much less run around the tables.)  The waiters and waitresses were having trouble delivering food and drinks due to this little girl.  Finally, the dad hollered at her to stop screaming and as he did, he was removing his big expensive camera out of her stroller.  My thought?  "Oh good...he's gonna strap her in."  NOPE!!!  The man started taking a massive amount of pictures of this little girl running around the restaurant screaming!  PICTURES!!!!  OH. MY. PEPSI!!!!  I was in shock.  Something else I noticed is that the parents rarely yell at these kids....mostly because they just give in.  It was amazing.  I found myself wanting to spank a bunch of kids AND parents!!!  UGH!

This is what I dreamed of doing...absolutely nothing!!  Actually, my plan was to do some digital scrapbooking, which I did, but Patrick kept me pretty busy, so I didn't have as much time by myself as I had planned.  Don't get me wrong, I thoroughly enjoyed spending time with my man and wouldn't have it any other way.

This is my front of our castle...ummm...Canada's Casa Loma.  (A girl can dream, right??)  We toured this magnificent castle built a very long time ago. (notice how I can't remember any details??  If you are interested in knowing more about this castle, may I suggest google?)  It was really cool.  As we were driving to get to the castle, our GPS took us through some neighborhoods and I am fascinated with the way people live in other places.  (Maybe it's the builder's daughter in me...)  The houses were so close together.  The majority of the homes are 10+ story apartment/condos.  It was very strange coming from Oklahoma.  I remember when they built a 3 story apartment building on the southside and I thought that was so cool!  LOL!  I guess because of the number of people here, they have to build UP.  The prices for housing here are insane, also.  Again, I understand I was born and bred in Oklahoma and after being here for a week, I truly believe God puts us exactly where He wants us!  When Patrick and I got married, our first apartment was about 700 square feet and we paid about $400 a month for that one bedroom thing.  Here (and yes, I know it's almost 17 years later) for that same size apartment, you will pay around $1500.  A house half the size of mine, built on a 5500 sq ft lot will cost you about half a million dollars.  It just amazes me.  i wonder what they would think if they came to west OKC and looked around. 

Oh...another interesting thing we noticed...compact cars everywhere.  I can count on one hand how many pick up trucks we have seen and not ONE large SUV.  Well, we did see one on the way to Niagara Falls, but when it passed us, it was from Pennsylvania.  Mini vans are the largest vehicle you will see.  Is it a rule or something???  It just seemed so weird.  My big truck would never fit into the parking spots here.

This picture is from the castle, also, but I couldn't get it to move up to the castle portion of my post.

The pictures above are from Niagara Falls.  There were a TON of people there, but that didn't keep us from enjoying the awesomeness of God's creation!

So, for now, I will wrap this up as I need to get my stuff packed for my trip home tomorrow.  So long, Toronto!!


  1. Praying for safe travel for you on your way home tomorrow... Loved your post below, about your large family and the training. We think so much a like:)

  2. I am glad you had a good trip. I enjoyed the pics. I have Canadian friends here so fun to see. Our apartment here in Korea is 25 stories high.So 10 is not to bad. We have lived on 12th,10th and now only 5th. Praying for safe trip back to OKC. Pamela

  3. Get home safe time for another play date!!