to hear the sea-maid's music

Though appearing precarious, Janneke was in good hands today as she boarded a boat. Today was the Easter Seals Regatta at the Port Dalhousie Yacht Club. Firemen came to help the families with boarding, and we enjoyed a fabulous ride- thanks so much, T and C. We were so thankful for the great weather: no rain, sunshine and a cool breeze.

Janneke sounded the horn as we passed by the Yacht Club

There was plenty of room for the chairs on the boat.
The girls rotated between their chairs and our laps.

For our American friends, the girls are looking towards Fort Niagara (USA) along the Niagara River. I like this photo with the American fort in the background and the Canadian flag in the foreground. We were intrigued by the American cannons pointed at the British flag and Fort George.

Janneke loved the stripes on the boat pillows.

Earlier this week, nurse Bridget and I took Rachel and Janneke to join the JK and SK students from Beacon for their annual visit to Happy Rolph's, a local park with animals. The last time we took our girls there, Rachel had been petrified. This time around, she seemed to enjoy all the action. Janneke loved the goats, and she put out her foot and hand to test their tongues.

Rachel loved having her friends nearby, and Abby took time to show Rachel how to throw bread to the ducks. (Much thanks to Kelly VandenAkker-Teeuwsen for the photos!)

I wondered how both girls would react to the animal sounds, particularly the braying of the donkey, but they took it in stride, partly due to the fact that all the JK and SK kids were also loud in their excitement. We look forward to continuing our friendship with the Beacon kids this fall.

Speaking of donkeys, if you enjoy Shakespeare, vineyards, wine, and A Midsummer's Night Dream, you can enjoy all of it at the annual Shakespeare in the Vineyard, held July 7-9 and 14-16. A Midsummer's Night Dream will be performed at Henry of Pelham Winery with all proceeds going to the Niagara Peninsula Children's Centre. We're going again this year, and we look forward to seeing Ron VandenBurg as Snug the Joiner! A special thanks to all the donations and sponsors for making this event happen, particularly Thorold Lumber. Click this link for details.

A Midsummer's Night Dream is one of my favourites of Shakespeare.... and NPCC is currently a favourite place, so the night is sure to be enjoyable. The lines from the play are some of the funnier ones from the Bard - "Nay, faith, let me not play a woman; I have a beard coming."

Recently, Rachel had her hearing tested to prepare for school in the fall. As with Janneke's hearing tests, the evaluation is done in a sound-proof room - no windows either -and so an exposition of sleep comes upon me (Act 4, Scene 1).

The results? I am tired of pink bunnies that play drums. (This is the stuffed animal that the audiologists use to draw Rachel's attention by first using hearing.)

I am a bit concerned with the hearing in Rachel's right ear since there seemed to be difficulty for her with that ear. I hope to bring her to the doctor this week to see if she is dealing with a middle ear infection. That might explain her tears in the night. The audiologist will retest her hearing before September.

Tomorrow, both girls are due to see the low-vision specialist at the U of Waterloo. We love visiting with Dr. Wiggins; he has a heart for kids like Rachel and Janneke. I appreciate his advice for their vision and for the bigger issues of special needs.

Emily and Sophia are officially on summer break, and they have already enjoyed camping, boating, and swimming! While Ralph and I took some time to complete gov't paperwork and other related responsibilities, the girls spent a night and day with their aunts and uncles at the Pinery to celebrate cousin Caleb's health. I am sure my sister will blog a bit of that weekend soon. We love it when our kids come home happy.

Peace for your Monday.