Castles, Valentines and Pancakes

It was a nice three day weekend with the boys. Taking them on Thursday turned out to be the best move. The storm known as ‘Nemo’ shut down all the schools in the city and would have make getting the boys back to my place a real chore, so I was very happy Leah let me take them a day early. Didn’t take much arm twisting since she got to sleep in an extra morning as well.

Now two weeks ago when Ethan was playing with his clay, he took a box that weekend and usd it when he was playing. I asked him what he as doing with the box, Ethan told me that it was no longer a box. It was a castle, where his clay king and queen lived in. I was impressed with Ethan’s imagination and wanted to do what I could to help him out. So when Ethan came over to my place to hang out with me this weekend, this was waiting for him at the kitchen table.


It was the same box he had been using the last weekend he was at my place, but I used my paint kit to spruce it up a bit and actually make it look like a castle. The cool part is the draw bridge also opens, which Ethan absolutely loved. He spend a good portion of the weekend playing with his new castle, and while I don’t have a lot of money to spoil my little guys, I do what I can to make them feel welcome.

Later in the weekend, Jonathan was watching one of his favourite shows on YTV and the show did a them about Valentine’s Day, and Ethan asked me when that was coming up. I informed him that this coming Thursday was the big day and that he should probably get ready to give cards and stuff to the people that he loved. It was this moment when Ethan asked if I was going to buy him anything for the big day, like his Mom apparently has. I informed Ethan that I couldn’t afford to but if he wanted to, we could make our own Valentines and then give them to the people that we love most. So rather than hang around and play video games and surf the net, Ethan and I spend a few hours drawing and making our own Valentines. It was nice to see Ethan understand that not all gifts have to be bought in a store, that those made by hand are just as special as the effort is truly what counts.

Ethan knows that I’m struggling and that tings like food for all of us to eat when he’s visiting is a bigger priority right now. He’s been a big boy about it and understood where I’m coming from. He made me a killer Valentine that had dragons, hearts and a picture of me on it. It was a great card and I put it on my fridge so I can see it everyday. I made one of my own for Ethan. Even if I could afford to get him something later, I would have still done this so that Ethan could learn and appreciate how great it is to have someone make something for you for special occassions. This is the card I made for him:


In case the picture is a bit too blurry to read, this is what it says:
When my days are very tough
and I’ve almost had enough
all it takes is your smile
to make me happy for a while.

I love you more than words can say
and hope you have an amazing day.

Happy Valentine’s Day!

Love always,
Dad
Being a poet is helpful when you’re making your own Valentines. This is an original poem I came up with last night, and I promised Ethan that his card will be the only one that will feature this poem. He seemed delighted and he even read it out loud when I first gave it to him. I could tell he geniunely loved it and he gave me a big hug afterwards and it made for quite a father/son moment.

Earlier today, I’ve kept a pretty decent tradition going on. For the last several visits, I’ve always made pancakes for the kids the morning of the day they head back for to their Mom’s place. Today I kept that going, whipping up six flapjacks for the littles guys to consume. While I was making pancakes, one of them cooked in an odd shape that I had to show to Ethan. I pointed down at the pancake as it was cooking as asked him what he thought it looked like. Ethan looked down at it and he saw exactly what I thought I was seeing: a heart.

When I finished cooking up the heart shaped pancake, I took a quick picture of it and let Ethan have it. Another early Valentine, which he happily accepted and wolfed down. So here is the picture of today’s heart shaped pancake:


Looks pretty awesome, eh?

So that was my weekend with the boys. It was one of our better weekends, and when the weekends are this good… it’s always great to get an extra day thanks to the snow storm. I enjoy all the time I get to spend with my boys and I never hesitate to take extra time. I tell everyone that my boys come first and when Ethan reaches that age when he’s too cool to hang out with his parents will be the time when I’ll be able to relax and have some me time.

Until then, I look forward to every weekend I get with my boys.

I hope everyone else had a great weekend and managed to stay warm!

PJ

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