Early opinions of Canada

Well, we have only been in Canada for a week.  Here are the first things that I have noticed.

Food is expensive, way more than expected.  Almost $4 for a half gallon of milk.  We went to Dairy Queen, and a small Blizzard cost $6.  Back in the sweet days of an awesome exchange rate compared to the US dollar, it wasn't a big deal, but I am noticing it now.

Oreos suck here for some reason.  The filling is really thick, not soft, moist and delicious.  Disappointing,

Too much change, I am conflicted on this one.  It doesn't make any financial sense for a government to produce a dollar bill.  But these toonies and loonies are weighing me down.  Willing to take it though, as a bonus the penny is on its way out here, prices are rounded to the nearest .05.

Debit cards and credit cards are still separate, which is just plain weird.  Didn't we figure this out in the States like a decade ago.  Debit cards that work as Visas are way easier.  The Canadians do have the secure chip going for them though.

The people have been super friendly and helpful, still need to get a medical insurance card and test the system.

Bonjour from Montreal!

Bonjour!  In case you are not keeping track at home, we are off on another family adventure.  This time to beautiful Montreal, Quebec in Canada.  We get to take advantage of my recently acquired Canadian citizenship to follow a really good opportunity for Chris.  We are just now getting settled into the city and are living in some temp housing for the time being.  All we know so far is that everything is different in Quebec, even the construction barrels are a different color than in Ontario.  English and French are both the official languages in Canada, and throughout Ontario (at least) all of the road signs are in both languages.  As soon as you cross into Quebec, that all stops and everything is just in French.

Max's Creative Writing

As part of the school year ending, Max brought home some of his creative writing from 1st grade that we got a kick out of.  Not really sure where the whole cat thing came from, and that last one has quite the twist at the end.

Sunny days are best
Umm... what are we eating
Mmm.. I love hot dogs!
My summer vacation is for cookie cake and video games
Eh.. I am tired
Rrrr.. I don't want summer to end

The Best Pet
I think cats make the best pet in the world.  Because they are soft they are good to cuddle with.  Secondly, they chase mice out of your house.  Last, they don't have fleas.  That's why cats are epic pets.

Attack of the Devils!!
Me and my friends and family were digging.  Then the problem came.  We hit rock, that was bad.  Then we went over to my place.  Then we started to dig again, we got to the core of the earth then.  Ella let a rope down so we could get up then we got a rock and threw it at a wolf.  The wolf ran at us but it fell in the hole and died!!!  We went down in the hole.  I was scared that I was going to die like the wolf, but we noticed that there was devils and Ella died!  Dun, dun, dun!!!!

Ella's Best Soccer Season Yet

Ella put a wrap on the Spring soccer season with her team the Fusion.  This was her best season yet, scoring 5 goals, and really played hard each and every game.  Her league recognizes one player from each team to be awarded with the Hamilton Sportsmanship Award for playing with the values of integrity, fairness, and respect.

She was recognized during a Carolina Railhawks game by being able to go down on the field at halftime and be introduced to the crowd.

She is going to give some tougher leagues a go, and look to try out for some more competitive teams in the fall.

School Projects from the Kids

The kids have completed some school projects lately which were kind of fun.

"The Biopoem of Ella Wynn"
Brave, loving, heart warming, strong
Daughter of Chris Wynn, sister of one
Who loves stuffed animals, loves freedom, loves traveling
Who experiences love, sadness, and failing over and over
Who fears of darkness, the movie 2012, and being separated from my family
Who is accomplishing soccer, basketball, and reading
Who wants to go skydiving, go to Brazil, and live in Brazil
Born in Florida and living in Cary

Max did a project for Mother's Day that was amusing, especially if you know Sarah.  The underlined words are what he filled in.

Happy Mother's Day
Mom, it's me I am really sorry that I've been really mean.  So this is time for me to say sorry.  You are the best mom ever!

1) What is your mom really good at?
2) What does your mom do to relax?
Sleep from 9:00am to 1:00pm
3) Where does your mom like to shop?
4) How old is your mom?
5) What do you love most about your mom?
She snuggles with me
6) If you could buy your mom anything, what would it be?
7) What does your mom do while you're at school?

My mom is as pretty as a Queen
She is as sweet as candy
She is as smart as a velociraptor
But most of all, she is as special as my modified nerf gun

My mom is special
Oh those nerf wars
The fun at the beach
Hi mom
Ewww! What's this
Royal as can be

All About Mom
Let me tell you about my mom.
My mom is 40 years old.
She likes to take naps.
The best thing she cooks is mac and cheese.
Her favorite food is a lot
Her favorite thing to do to relax is sit down and watch tv
we like to read together.
She is really good at cooking.
As you can see my mom is special because she is as awesome as a nerf gun.

Christmas 2012

Christmas is most definitely the kids favorite holiday.  This year was our first Christmas in North Carolina (thought that it would be a little warmer than it was).  We also drove up to Michigan to see family and friends over the Christmas break, stopping to see Chris' brother, Eric in West Virginia on the way up.

Disney Vacation - 2012

We had another excellent December vacation to Disney World for Max's 7th birthday, keeping with the tradition of going each year on his birthday.  We'll see how much longer we can keep this up, the whole family wants to get back to Hawaii and go on another cruise, so at some point we might have to make some decisions.

We took it more our usual style this year and really relaxed.  We didn't try to do too much, so we were able to take each day at a nice easy pace.  We were still able to see everything that we wanted and had a lot of fun.

Max lost his first tooth on his birthday at the Magic Kingdom!

Sarah's Birthdaypalooza

2012 was the big year for Sarah, she turned the big 4-0, went over the hill, and is in the second half of her life.  40 years gone.

She really celebrated in style this year with 3 separate celebrations.  First up, she headed to the mountains in Tennessee with some friends to celebrate both her birthday and a friends.  The second stop on the tour was heading up to Michigan for the weekend to spend time with her family, including a sleepover at her cousins.

The final leg was a surprise weekend in Orlando.  I took her and the kids down to Orlando for the Food and Wine Festival at Epcot, always one of her favorite events.  Also surprised her with a private birthday party and fireworks viewing at the Boardwalk Hotel at Disney.  It was a really nice dinner, some friends were able to come out and spend the evening with her and we had a great view of the fireworks at Epcot.

Halloween 2012

Halloween this year was the kids first here in North Carolina.  It was a simpler affair for us than usual.  Since we just moved to the area we decided to not do our annual party.  The kids also ran out of time and were not able to come to my work for trick or treating.  That left just good old fashioned regular trick or treating around the neighborhood.

Ella was a Geisha Girl while Max went as Snake Eyes from GI Joe.  It was nice to have good weather on Halloween, not too cold to wear their costumes.

Settling into North Carolina

Well, no posts in quite a while.  Moving to North Carolina and getting settled in has been quite the adventure.  Work, school, and other activities have kept us super busy.  Now that we are through the holidays, we wanted to start getting some updates posted.

This fall, the kids started their new school at Briarcliff Elementary, Ella started 3rd grade, and Max started 1st.  They are both doing really well in school, particurlarly reading.  Ella just tested in the 99th percentile on a standardized reading test and Max is reading level 12 books while some kids in his class are on level 1 and 2.