Friday, 30 June 2017

Matthew's First Father's Day

...Look at you up there, juggling babies like a pro.

I'm a bit late with this one, but I think that's just how it's going to be from now on... A couple of Sundays ago we celebrated Father's Day for Matthew - a big one for him this year! The day started out with a pancake breakfast and some playtime with the babies, and then we went over to Car Free Day on Main St.

George, Terra, Matthew, blurry fist

We had been "through" Car Free Day in previous years (driving through on the periphery) when it was hot, sunny, and seething with people. This year was damp and drizzly. Actually for the first half of the day we kept making Plan B's to avoid having to go out in it (parenthood truth: you can't hold an umbrella and push a double stroller at the same time, and neither of us own rain coats). However after much deliberation we decided to go, because Matthew had a special order to pick up from the games store (and the games store gents hadn't met the babies yet). Also we bribed ourselves with a promise of bagels from the Jewish bakery across the street from the games store, if only we could make it there.

...So we finally girded our loins and strolled forth, through the back streets from Granville to Main. Granville to Main (and 24th Ave, at that) is longer than any other stroller walk we have attempted with the babies (our previous longest stroll was to get the babies vaccinated at Ontario St, just 2 blocks shy of Main). Although we used to do this on the reg before the babies arrived, now it seems like a long and fraught journey. It's fair to say that we were most concerned: 1. that the babies would cut up rough halfway there and we would have nowhere to stop and feed/change/console them, and 2. that I wouldn't make it as I am still a bit weak and lacking in stamina.

Here are some of the sights we saw on our journey:

A wood pecker! We actually saw 3 of these throughout the day, mostly on the ground foraging between the pavement cracks for ants.

Creepy abandoned deconstructed house with a decaying white picket fence.

Gregarious tortoiseshell

This is one of many urban veggie gardens we observed and admired. There is certainly a trend in Mount Pleasant to rip out your entire front yard and plant vegetables. I'm not talking a small patch here, folks, I'm talking rows upon rows, enough to cater many meals with.

The air was damp and heavy, and the flowers all looked super bright against the gray sky.

Those who know me know I love a good fungus photo opportunity. Vancouver has so many interesting fungi.
When we got to Main Street the crowds were not too thick to navigate a stroller through. Nevertheless we remained focused and bee-lined for Strategies.

Matthew with his babes.
After checking in with the men at Strategies and showing off George and Miriam (Matthew is a regular at the games store as he has been going there almost weekly for 5 years!). The team there were very welcoming of the babies, although we parked them in a corner because I am a bull in a china shop with that double stroller. Matthew picked up his long-anticipated gaming swag, and we strolled on to Solly's.

We had worried that we wouldn't be able to get into Solly's due to crowds and stairs (both banes to mobility devices, we are learning). But in fact there was a ramp and we managed to pick the exact moment when no other customers were in the store. We thought maybe because the street festival was attracting people with food options, but soon after we ordered we were followed by a veritable horde of people, including fully uniformed police, fellow stroller-pushers, and an electric wheelchair. Solly's isn't that big of a cafe, but we all peaceably fit.

Weird: at Solly's they schmear your bagel for you, using a kind of "little hill" technique, where the hole of the bagel is utterly covered in a peak of cream cheese. That middle bite is all schmear, no bread.

Side note: I attempted to drink my first fully caffeinated coffee since before babies... didn't finish it (or even really enjoy it), but did put enough of a spring in my step to walk all the way home. Job done.

As something of a Father's Day gift to Matthew, the babies slept like perfect angels all the way to Car Free Day and back home again. They do love a good stroll in the stroller, and they were apparently soothed by all the bumps in the pavement and the crowds of Main St.

We wended back home in time for some cuddles before Baby Bath Night (Sundays. Please don't judge us that we only give the babies a full bath once a week. Until you have bathed two slippery infants screaming bloody murder you can't really know the challenge.)

All in all a successful, relaxing, peaceful Father's Day. My enduring thanks to Matthew for being an enthusiastic and loving new father to George and Miriam. They already know your face and your voice, and are delighted and calmed by you.

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