Our family has embarked on virtual travels to various countries and regions. To explore these countries and their cultures, we have followed along with the festivals, cooked and eaten traditional foods, learned of traditional handicrafts with hands on exploration, along with many activities to immerse ourselves. Chronicled here are some of these activities.

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Monday, August 19, 2013

Our Week in a Nutshell

This week, we celebrated the Chinese Qixi Festival and threw Elle's 11th birthday party. Elle and Pea were incredibly helpful in helping with the preparations for the party. We also celebrated a family friend's birthday by playing an outdoor version of battleship equipped with walkie talkies (it's great to have friends who are young at heart!), which causes me to question why sinking a friend's ship gave me such utter satisfaction...

Left: Making treats for Chinese festival; Right: our first attempt at making a jelly fish pinata (it turns out when they say petroleum jelly should cover a bowl, they don't mean vegetable oil will do)
Some highlights I don't want to forget: hearing Pea and Elle break into song while working on the paper mache ("Sunshine, Lollipops & Rainbows"); Pea insisting on teaching us Hula dance moves in the moonlight after setting out her Qixi wish lantern with a wish for a family trip to Hawaii (Come on, Weaver maid!) ; Elle's unabashed excitement at adding candy eyes to cookie clams and candy octopus.

Elle's party was at the beach - a gamble when living in Nova Scotia (the last two birthday parties planned for outdoors had to be moved indoors due to rain) but everything worked out beautifully, and the sun was shining bright. 

We got to the beach early to commandeer a section, and had a lot of fun setting it all up. When the girls arrived, Elle ran off with her friends and they had a blast, many their first time seeing each other since school ended, playing at the beach. 

They also made sand and sea shell plaster casts, had a relay race (which I participated in to even out the teams -and had a blast -since Pea insisted her job was to take pictures) and enjoyed the jelly fish pinata. It was a really great time.

Elle also experienced some personal difficulties this past year, but she learned to manage them with a growing inner strength. She has such a joyful, exuberant personality, and it is such a pleasure to be a part of her life and watch her grow up into the wonderful young lady she is becoming. Happy Birthday Elle! xo


  1. Is that a sand castle birthday cake? Amazing if it is!! How wonderful to live near the coast. We used to in Ireland and I miss it so very much.
    I just LOVE your piñata. It must have looked wonderful hanging on a beach in the breeze!
    Happy,happy birthday Elle!

    1. Yes, that's a sandcastle cake - with graham cracker crumb sand. It is a bit questionable when looking at it though :) We were really happy after all with the pinata , it was difficult to throw it out afterwards!


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