While Canadians refer to it as the "May Two-Four" weekend, Victoria Day is in reality, the last Monday on or before May 24. This year the holiday seemed to be a lot earlier than I'd remembered it being in years, but a day off's a day off, so why quibble?
After a late start on Saturday, the four of us packed up our roomy new vehicle and navigated the surprisingly underpopulated streets of the GTA for a long overdue visit out of the city, which would soon be overrun with hopelessly lost tourists, patio drunks, Toronto FC soccer hooligans, and the latest protest. With Maggie all but back to 100%, we felt we could leave her with Minnie alone for the day and not worry (but who knows what they get into when we're away?). We played a new CD of Sesame Street favorites--including Oscar the Grouch's duet with Johnny Cash--but the boys slept through most it. But these songs are timeless, appealing to youngsters and adults alike, so Lidia and I were quite happy to hum along ourselves...
Of course, within minutes of arriving and getting reacquainted with everyone, it was like no time had passed at all. Grandma and Grandpa discovered that it now takes a little more elbow grease to hold onto these guys than the last time (imagine what bath time is like when they're wet!)
Aunt Wendy rolled out a good sized blanket so they could show off their ever-growing skills at grabbing and biting anything in sight (good thing Mooch avoided them).
Cousin Stephanie was only a few days away from turning sixteen (which made me feel about 110 years old), so an impromptu birthday party was improvised while everyone was under one roof. The boys seemed a little bewildered by the whole spectacle, but I couldn't help but wonder how we were going to engineer these types of events in their future: one cake? Two? And all those candles--I'm pretty sure there's a clause in the condo corp's building code that we'd be violating...
The boys were quite content to chill on a blanket and flop around until they collapsed from exhaustion (it never ceases to amaze me how much mileage they can get out of a few dozen ML of formula). Carter has added some eardrum-shattering squeaks and hollers to his antics, and Nathaniel just keeps himself flipping over and is gradually discovering the mechanics of crawling.
Of course, there were gifts: new duds, toys (now we have a machine that can sing "Itsby Bitsy Spider" for us!), and their first set of Hot Wheels cars...
The weather eventually turned cold and murky but not before we were able to get in a tour of the neighbourhood, around which one day the boys will find very exciting possibilities to get into trouble: a choice of playgrounds, thick marshes, construction sites--actually, I'm getting nervous just thinking about it.
We returned on Sunday for a very special excursion indeed: the boys' first trip to a class-A restaurant. To further celebrate Steph's sixteenth, we journeyed via several car loads to the Mandarin Restaurant, where their mom and dad filled themselves to capacity on glorious heaps of lobster, sushi, prime rib, and other reminders of our once generous disposable incomes, while Carter and Nathaniel gorged themselves on their own beverages (not that the management seemed to mind, and of course, the dynamic duo attracted no shortage of admirers...).
Happily fed and enchanted by the sights and sounds of the strange, new surroundings, they were very well behaved--having a lot of fun being passed around from lap to lap, taking in the sights, including the aquarium and the spectacle of long lineups of strange adults stuffing themselves until they were near comatose.
Hey, how about teaching the boys a little lesson in moderation, people?