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She continues to be a delightful source of fun (and frustration)! She is (generally) a very happy baby and has become our goodwill ambassador(ess) everywhere we go. Take her to the grocery store and she gurgles at everyone she sees, tries to make eye contact and even REACH OUT to touch old and young alike. "She's such a HAPPY baby," is what we hear everywhere we go. She loves to laugh and giggles at practically everyone and anything. Though we still hear a lot, "What a delightful little BOY."
As Scott says, "She needs more hair."
She's now standing (supported) and with that, her World has grown proportionally (read: Everything below 3 feet is now FAIR GAME). She's got a box of toys in the living room to play with, but NO ... pulling 100's of CD's off the CD rack is WAY MORE FUN ... or maybe slobbering all over the remote control on the coffee table ... chasing the cat ... or (her new trick) ... CLIMBING THE STAIRS!
The other day, Scott was working on the PCT slide show, in his office, and Rachel was taking a shower. Scott noted that things were WAY too quiet and went to track Alex down. He looked all over the living room, the kitchen, dining room (TWICE), wondering where his little girl could be. He looked in the steamy bathroom - no Alex. Where the HECK was she? Happily playing on the SECOND FLOOR LANDING - pulling books from the bookshelf. Oh MY GOD!! Guess it's time to put up that kid gate.
She bounces to music. "Dances kinda like her Dad," says Rachel. HA HA.
The poor kitty cat can find no rest and spends his days outside, avoiding the squealing, grabby, squirmy, crawling kid. She still loves the poor furry creature to DEATH and anytime she sees him, squeals and gives chase. We used to feed him on the landing, half-way between the 1st and 2nd floors, but we're going to have to find a new spot soon - as this one has now been breached (or should we say - REACHED - though, we're happy to report - Alex DOESN'T LIKE the taste of cat food). At least his food is safe. The same can't be said for his WATER DISH, though.
Alex has had her share of falls and her poor head just seems to take a licking, but thankfully, keeps on ticking. (At least, we think so! Her vocabulary hasn't grown very much - but her VOLUME HAS! She can play quietly for some time, but God forbid if we should try to carry on a conversation with someone - in person or on the phone it doesn't matter - she's got to chime in with her 2-cents-worth ... more like a DIMES-WORTH, if judged by volume. It does help get rid of unwanted telephone calls, however!)
Alex has now made friends in the neighborhood. Neighborhood community centers are a big thing in Edmonton and ours was celebrating it's centennial a couple of weeks ago. They had a big BBQ dinner outside the community hall and we thought we'd go and meet some new folks. Well, we didn't meet too many people, but while we were lined up to get our dinner, we let Alex crawl around on the floor and SHE met lots of people. One girl, Taylor, who - it turned out lives only 3 houses down our back lane - took a real liking to Alex and has been by to visit her, many times. She's brought friends by to introduce THEM to Alex, too. She's not shy and will even change Alex and plays with her nicely. Alex loves it when Taylor comes over - the more the merrier. Our little Ambassador(ess)!
We splurged and bought Alex a wading pool. We used it during our heat wave this summer (which lasted for a week). She loved it - as she loves her baths! Splish splash! We think that she can sink just about ANY boat we toss in, but it's not the toys she loves the most - it's the OTHER things (empty milk jugs, golf balls, anything really that's NOT a toy, it seems).
She still goes to bed easy and wakes up too early, usually around 7 AM ... but sometimes earlier.
She's a delight and a joy. We just wished that we had half her energy and a quarter of her enthusiasm. We never really felt our age before, but we do NOW, watching Alex squirm and move - nonstop.
Two years after we hiked 2,560-miles from Mexico to Canada along the PCT, Scott finalized the online slide show. We have added LOTS of new photos and they've all been modified to show at a higher resolution. Click HERE to see pictures and information about our 5-month long wilderness adventure. It was the experience of a lifetime!
(Scott has been motivated by Tom & Sheila, who've almost finished hiking the length of California. They're headed to Seiad Valley this week). We've been reading their online journal, which brings back memories of our 5-month-long hike. Just the motivation to get that slide show finished!
Grandma Pilley made the trip out from Vancouver because it's hard to pass up a round-trip airline ticket for less than $100 (well, a bit more, actually, because of fees, taxes & an airport improvement 'donation' - don't you HATE that?).
She came out to visit us, help with some window-coverings (she runs her own 'soft furnishings' company in Vancouver - upholstery, covers, drapes, pillows & such). She was a BIG help and instrumental in getting two very nice sets of drapes up in the dining room window. We think that the neighbors appreciate the drapes too, because now, when Scott gets up in the middle of the night for a 'midnight snack', in the buff, he's NOT flashing the neighbors when he flips on the kitchen light!!
Anyway, we didn't leave Gran locked in the basement sewing ALL the time! We took her & the Oop out for a picnic lunch at one of the big Edmonton parks - Goldbar Park. We took the Oop, because we wanted her to have her first experience feeding the ducks, but even though we ate our lunch by a pond, none came.
Later, when we walked back across the North Saskatchewan River on one of the pedestrian bridges, we spied a bunch of Canadian Geese hanging out near the parking lot. Dubious about both the size and nature of these pooping machines, Scott was hesitant about letting Geese be Oop's first experience with fowl (FOUL?). Rachel had her heart set on a bird-feeding experience, however, and convinced an over-protective Dad that we should try. The birds were interested in food, no doubt, taking all the bread crumbs that were brought for that specific purpose - even FIGHTING over them. Alex laughed with glee and squealed with delight! Right until the very end, when the food was gone and the birds decided that MAYBE the Oop's fingers could be consumed.
Thanks for coming out Gran! It was a fun visit.
This is the last year for the Edmonton Triple-A baseball team. (We're not sure about the full details, but they're headed to someplace in the States next year - financial reasons, no doubt. It's up in the air whether Edmonton will even HAVE a team next year). We got two tickets, courtesy of our neighbor across the lane, Paul. We got to watch the Edmonton "Trappers" play against the Tacoma, Washington "Rainiers". We thought we'd introduce Alex to baseball!
It was a WARM day (by Edmonton standards) ... probably somewhere in the mid-80's. Warm enough that people were flocking to get out of the sun and all the seats around us (way up in the nose-bleed section, in the shade) were jammed with people. Paul's seats were in the VERY LAST row, well protected from the sun (and rain), under the canopy.
Alex took it all in with her usual aplomb. She got pretty fidgety after the 6th inning and we even contemplated heading home, but Scott was adamant that she experience her first "Seventh Inning Stretch", so we stuck it out. By the end of the song, heck, the game was close and near the end, so we just stuck it out. We're glad we did because it was a GREAT finish. Edmonton went down a run in the top of the ninth and with two outs, two men on base, the Edmonton batter blasted one into right field to score both the tying and winning runs!! The Oop clapped and cheered (mostly because everyone else was clapping and cheering), but she was really in good spirits, despite the sweltering heat.
It's a great ballpark and we're thankful to Paul that we were able to add another experience to Alex's growing list. They were handing out "Trapper" rub-on tattoos to the kids, so Alex got one and sported it on her shoulder for two days (until her every-other-day bath, anyway). We even had a ball-cap for her to wear, though she kept pulling it off, because those of you who know Alex, know that she HATES HATS! Some things never change.
I've updated the weather button on our web page, using a new Edmonton-specific service. Temps are reported in degrees Celsius, which may throw off some U.S. readers. Scott thought about putting up a conversion table, but decided against it because he didn't know where to start: -50 degrees ? or -40 degrees ? It's just too depressing.
An example of the new button is on the left.
Scott finally DID put together a temperature scale. He made is very simple, so everyone (especially those relatives in Arizona) should be able to figure out just how miserable we'll be, come December.
We're on the prairies now! We've been here approximately 3 weeks and we've already had two major storms. Those babies roll in fast and are accompanied by flashes of light and loud rolling boomers! The drops are big and we've even had a bit of hail. And when it pours ... it POURS! (Both times, Scott has been in the middle of barbecuing dinner and gotten soaked!) This ain't no Vancouver drizzle!