September 2009


Even pick-up a nut

Even pick-up a nut

On our family trip our son asked me twice if he could eat with chop sticks, or chomp sticks as he likes to call them. I said  that we would bring home some and we could try them.  On Saturday we went and got the groceries and restocked the fridge and pantry, we also got the stuff we needed to make sesame noodles.

The recipe we made came from the Pioneer Woman  we love her site.  Of course when he found out what we were making for super he asked if he could use chomp sticks and I said of course and why don’t you set the table. He did and everyone got chomp sticks plus Teddy (his bear) and Chase because dogs are good at eating with chomp sticks.

Chase meeded them also

Chase needed them also

While things where being cooked I had this scene in my head from a movie or a TV show that some guy couldn’t eat with chop sticks and a girl made a way for him that was easier to use them. With the power of google and here is a video on how to do it (sorry for the annoying web site). It worked like a charm he had a great meal for supper. 

If you remember the movie that came from please let me know.

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Here is what we bring and do when we travel with our son on an airplane. This is his second trip, he is 5, but his first plane ride he was 3. We bring a range of activities and things to occupy him. Please note he is very hard to feel out and his interests change rapidly and can range from colouring to dancing  so having options is critical.

We pack for him a small backpack  to carry on, not too heavy or big, something he can wear, or if we have to carry isn’t a big deal. This trip I added a carabiner to it and snap it onto a suitcase instead of trying to carry it.

 air travel5

We also try and find a seat that is out-of-the-way so he can make himself comfortable and a window to watch the plane is a good idea.

air travel3

So what is in the bag:

  • Sticker books
  • New crayons
  • Magnetic scene creator (this one was Calliou)
  • Colouring pages…Disney and Lego (taken from web sites)
  • blank paper for drawing
  • small notebook for writing
  • Lego magazines
  • stuffed animal
  • drink
  • playing cards (Old Maid, Go Fish)
  • Headphones (for the airplane and the iPod)

air travel2

Not in the bag but for him in my wife’s carry on:

  • Snacks
  • iPod with kids shows loaded on.
  • his small inexpensive digital camera

air travel4

This was a cute picture of him trying to familiarize himself with the plane and the emegency exits, enjoying a snack and watching the inflight entertainment system.

air travel

I decided not to go into a lot detail about WDW (rodent as Daddy Scratches calls him) most people have been there or know people who have. Instead I will pass on couple of things that worked for us.

What worked:

  • Free Dinning – I like this, it makes you feel that you have gotten some great value for your stay. This makes a trip much more budget friendly. I don’t think I would go without Free Dining.
  • Pop Century Resort – This is a value property at Disney. It is what it is, the room is smallish, beds are small, but let me tell you after the heat and all the walking, even my wife that can be a night owl was asleep fast. The resort is bright and maybe a little over the top but it is Disney and that is part of why you are here.  We have seen the moderates, not worth that extra $ in our opinion. We also experienced the bus service at a Deluxe resort, and let’s just say Pop has better service. Maybe the stops are further away, but people you have just walked all day, is a little farther going to hurt you?

pop

  • Quick silver car service – Who in their right mind would want to take the Magical Express after you do this? Sure cost a little more but it included a grocery stop (save money), and a quick trip to the resort and back to the airport. Also since I’m Canadian and Magical Express looks at us  as an international departure, we didn’t have to go to the airport 4 hours before our flight left.
  • Tour Guide Mike – This is an online service that will help to keep you away from the lines and make the most of your trip, we used him before and with this trip also. We got a taste of what happens when you don’t use his the advice on the last day. We had the longest lines and the busiest park in two trips, and guess what it, was a not recommended day… but my son needed to ride Splash one more time so we went with it.
  • Stroller – Okay this I agree, at 5 he should maybe have walked, but lets face it,  it is stinking hot, lots of walking and Daddy is on holiday and didn’t want the wining. We used our trusty Maclaren Volo that we got that last trip and used it again. Our son is now too big for it (height wise not weight wise) so we will pass it along. It was cheaper than a rental, smaller, lighter, and great to use it at the airport.

stroller

  • Advanced Dinner Reservation – ADR’s okay this is extremely important and a bit of a pain but you must make them for any meal that you want to sit down and eat inside (also called Table service). Yes it takes some of the fun out of the trip and takes away from being spontaneous,  but do you find getting turned away, or waiting 2 hrs to eat fun? Make the ADRs, save the frustration.

What didn’t work- not too much,  having a flexable nature and doing what we can so that we roll with changes and modifications to our plans. Sure there are things we wanted to do but didn’t, and there are things we didn’t plan to do but loved. Our son had his moments of being extremely frustrating but that happens at home also. And come on what 5 yr old doesn’t have these moments?

All in all it was a great family trip. The credit for most of the planning and getting things ready goes to my bride. 

So thank you sweet heart for another great family trip….. Where to next? “Windsor”….

Yesterday we returned from 8 days of holidays with our son. I really enjoyed the time we spent together as a family, it was a nice break. This year we headed to see Mickey Mouse. Even though we are not huge mouse fans it is a good vacation for a young child. This is our second trip there, we did the first when our little man was three.

It was free dinning and value season so also a good value for a trip. I will be back with more but wanted to post something so that people know that I’m still around.SplashMtnPhoto-reduced

textmeaagage
This form of messaging confuses me. I have never texted, so I guess that makes me a text message virgin. And really I don’t have a great deal of desire too, but feeling a little peer pressure to learn, If my grandmother starts maybe I should learn. I would never have figured that text messaging would be so popular, when I’m out and look around there are more people texting then talking on the phone. I have more business contacts now sending  me blackberry email messages that have short forms that I should know. 
And more kids walking around with their heads down and thumbs going.  How long will it be until there  is some condition like “text neck”.
 The sad part for me is when you see a mother or father out with their child for an outting, or watching their child playing sport, and they spend more time frigging with their text messaging  then paying attention to their child and family. I’m sure these same partents will yell at their child when they are older because they are too busy messaging with whatever method is cool at that time.
Kind of a sad sign of the connected society we live in.

Ultimate question

This is a very interesting book that I got from Brian Scudamore founder and CEO of 1-800-got-junk Called “The Ultimate Question” By Fred Reichheld. As a small business person that is trying to grow my business it was a very timely and eye opening read. It is stuff that you know, but it places things in terms and examples that you can relate to. I think it is a good listen or read for anyone that is entrepreneur, small, mid range or large business owner, CEO, or managers, or basically just anyone that is interested in business. Fred the author, and for the audio book the reader, has a very good way of getting across the material in away that will not confuse or bore you. I will be recommending it to so other business people I know. Please check it out. You will enjoy it.

He looks so caught in this picture

He looks so caught in this picture

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