We Are Fami-Lee

We Are Fami-Lee

Monday, June 24, 2013

Calgary Flood 2013

I've been feeling a lot of emotions lately.  Most of them have to do with the devastation I've seen first hand this weekend.

For those unaware, Calgary (and several other cities/towns in Alberta) has suffered some major flooding.

Our home was spared as were most of our families/friends' homes, and I feel blessed because of that.

But, I can't help feeling overwhelming sorrow for the people who were evacuated from their homes (around 75,000-100,000 were evacuated) only to return to find their homes and basements devastated by the water.  They will have to spend so much time, effort and money to fix the mess.  But, they've also lost so many sentimental possessions and my heart breaks for them.

I'm feeling sorrow for the city in general.  How much time and money will be spent to rebuild bridges and LRT tracks, to fix the Stampede grounds and the Saddledome for upcoming events, to ensure businesses downtown can get back up and running?

The other overwhelming emotion I've been feeling the last couple of days, however, is awe.  I have seen so much heartfelt giving by those around me and I can't contain the emotion.

When 600 volunteers were asked for this morning, 7,000 people showed up.

Some donation centers are having to put a halt on people donating because there is simply not room to store it all.

Communities have organized relief efforts.

Facebook groups have been created to keep people updated and to ensure word gets out for volunteer opportunities.

I have seen so much giving, so much banding together to help our neighbors.  It has made me want to be a better person, to be more like the people I see around me.  Not just during disaster situations, but everyday of my life.

And for that, I'm feeling grateful.

In case you haven't seen, here are some pictures of the city:

Stampede grounds.  This is where they do the rodeo, chuck wagon races and the Grandstand show.  Under water. 

Some of the damage that'll have to be fixed. 

Homes and cars ruined. 

This shows how high the river was.  This is the Peace Bridge, a foot bridge that goes downtown.  Typically, the water is 15-20 feet below the bridge and here it looks maybe 5 feet? Less?

Inside the Saddledome.  They said that it was flooded up to the 10th row.  This is where the Flames play and where a lot of concerts and shows are performed during Stampede. 

A look at Downtown Calgary.  Derek wasn't able to go into work today, and it doesn't look good for him for the rest of the week. 

Some of the damage.  Houses with the decks torn off, and this is just the outside.  You know the damage gets worse inside.  

If you could keep these Calgarians in your thoughts and prayers, I'm sure they'd appreciate it.  And, I'll do my part around here to help with some of the more physical things!

Thursday, June 13, 2013

A Girl and Her Elephant--16 AND 17 Months

I didn't ever write a post for Sam's 16 month and here's why: I had been keeping a running list of all the words that she had been learning and saying and by the time 16 months rolled around, there were WAY too many words that I couldn't think of all of them and even beginning to write the post felt overwhelming.  So I procrastinated.  Procrastinated long enough for her to turn 17 months.  So we're combining the posts.  Elephant pictures, if you feel so inclined:

16 Months

 As you can tell, these are getting harder and harder to take each month...

17 Months:

...but, somehow, we can always end with a good one!

As I said earlier, Samantha is talking like CRAZY!! Anything we say she tries to copy.  Sometimes it sounds like it, other times not so much.  She's started saying 2 syllable words and even 2 words together.  Ones that pop into mind are "love you" (wuv you) and "oh no" (sounds pretty good).  Another thing that's new is she's starting to answer questions instead of just repeat the last word we said.  For example, a couple months ago if we asked "Samantha, do you want some milk?" she'd say "milk" and we'd know she wanted some (oftentimes this was accompanied by her running to the fridge for the milk).  Now, however, if we ask "Samantha, do you want some milk?" she'll say "yep" or "nope" and then we'll know.  

Along with all the talking has come a lot of babbling too.  She yabbers up a storm.  It's kind of nice when she doesn't say real words because then I can make up whatever conversation I want to have with her...

I started running (as in, I've done it twice this week and am planning on going tomorrow and if this lasts longer than this week, no one will be more surprised than me...) so Sam has had some fun in the stroller.  Let's be honest.  I bribe her with cookies.  Then she has fun.  

She likes green smoothies.  It's the only way I can get veges into her. 

The kid can't get enough of books.  And, as bad as it is to admit, the interest is solely hers.  It gets tough reading the same books over and over, and just flipping to the dang page with all the ducks every. single. time.  And, I know it'll just get worse.  I mean better.  Of course it'll be better.  

Sam loves slides but hates the swing.  

Fun as always!

Told you, she loves books!

This is what it would look like if we had a boy.  After getting sopping wet at a playdate, she had to go home in boys clothes...

She now has one top tooth through, and the other one should be coming through any day now. 

What it looks like as she goes down.  

She stuck the landing!

Oh yeah, she can now climb up her high chair.  Awesome!

She loves putting on shoes. 

Not sure what she's doing here but she's having a good time. 

Oh how I love the "wait I have to get the camera because what you're doing is too funny not to capture" photos...

And I'll leave you with this one.  Man, I have one cute kid!