This year for Christmas, Melissa & I got the kids tickets for the Stingray Experience at Ripleys Aquarium.
This is where we got a behind the scenes tour of the aquarium followed by a 20 min swim in the tank with the Stingrays. I really do not know how best to describe how amazing this experience was for our family. When in the water, the Stingrays swam all around us for the entire 20 minutes!!! Aiden probably got splashed 7 or 8 times right in the face by passing Stingrays including in the video below. We even go to feed the Stingrays!!!
After participating in the Stingray Experience we stuck around at the aquarium until almost closing time.
By the time we got home, the kids had passed out from a very long and exciting day!!
On December 21st, 2016, Uncle Jack passed away after falling unconscious earlier in the week. Melissa and Jackie flew to Quebec City to pay their respects and celebrate Uncle Jack’s life.
Below is a copy of Facebook post from Uncle Jack’s son-in-law Martin (Holly’s husband) and a copy of Uncle Jack’s Obituary.
Martin Brodeur’s Facebook Post
I don’t know if anyone else noticed what yesterday was. Yesterday was the winter solstice. The shortest day and The longest night of the year. It was the darkest and the gloomiest night of 2016. Like the longest night Jacks passing has left a dark chill in our hearts. But Jack passed away on a night of great significance. From today on the days get longer and the darkness will be replaced by the sun. The pain of his passing will slowly be brightened by the great memories we have and the light of his love for everyone will soon fill our days with warmth and clarity.
Today we mourn the passing of a father, a husband, a brother. We mourn the passing of a great man. But soon, as the time passes and the days get longer we will celebrate because we will realize how lucky we were to have him as part of our lives. Rest in peace Jack Neville
On December 3rd this year, the kids, Melissa and I along with Shawn, Megan and Violet had our second annual Christmas dinner with Uncle Keith and Auntie Linda. This year though we added something new. When we scheduled the dinner at the Old Stone, we did not realize that it was also at the same time as Peterborough’s Santa Claus Parade. So, what we did was we went to the restaurant a little early and Melissa, the kids and I watched the parade from the street while Shawn, Megan and Violet, Uncle Keith and Auntie Linda watched from inside the restaurant.
After the dinner, we went back to Shawn and Megan’s for some coffee and dessert before Uncle Keith and Auntie Linda headed home.
At work this year, a student from my class brought in a cake for me to have. All the kidd from my class got together in the staffroom with a friend that they invited and we all shared the cake.
For my birthday this year, Melissa planned a surprise for me. After work, I came home and took the kids to Karate, which is something I was not supposed to do, but Melissa was still asleep from her night shift and was unable to tell me that she needed me to stay. Fortunately it only put us a little behind time.
After Karate I came home and Melissa drove us to pick up some pizza and then took us to the Holiday Inn where Mama, Papa, Auntie Julie, Macklan and Eva were waiting to surprise me. They had all travelled up to spend the weekend with us.
On Saturday we went to a kids place where the kids played in the jungle gym and on some old arcade games. While there, we learned that Eva does not like the ball pit as you can see by the picture below 🙂
We then all came back to our house for supper.
On Sunday morning, they headed out early after 8:00am mass.
A couple weeks after Thanksgiving, Jason came to visit for 5 days. We came down to see him on the weekend.
On the Saturday morning, we all did some work around the house for Mom & Dad. We cleaned the chimney, trimmed the trees and raked the leaves for them. We then all got ready and headed into Peterborough to surprise Mom for her 75th birthday.
So, Mom’s 75th birthday is actually in December, but we decided to have a surprise party for her when Jason came home so that all of her children could be there to celebrate with her. We all met at the bowling alley, which is where we told her that we would be playing family game of bowling to celebrate her birthday. Mom easily won her game, while Jason won his game. While we all played a fun game of bowling, we had Megan come out to Mom & Dad’s house and put out decorations for the party so that when they got home, they would be up.
On Sunday, Macklan, Aiden, Abby & I all went for a walk in the back field and headed over to visit Great Uncle Joe. While we were busy doing that Eva had some fund Snapchatting with her Auntie Melissa.
It was a great weekend!!!
After watching the Minimalism Documentary back in June, we followed up by completing The Minimalists 31 Day Challenge. The concept is simple, the challenge is hard. On the 1st day of the month you throw out or donate 1 item. On the 2nd day you throw out or donate 2 items and so on all the way to 31. By the end of the month, it adds up to 496 items. After we completed the challenge, we took all of our donated items and at the suggestion of Abby & Aiden, we held a Garage Sale for all of the items and donated all of the money we made to Sick Kids Foundation. We made a little video celebrating the completion of our challenge.
Melissa completed another challenge in November bringing the total items removed from the house to little over a thousand.
For the second year in a row, the Blue Jays made it to the ALCS, this year against Cleveland. They went down 3-0 against them, but came back to win Gm 4, 5-1.
For Game 5, Rob got tickets for the game and we both went. Unfortunately they lost 3-0. However it was incredible to be in the Rogers Centre with 50,000 screaming fans.