We didn't have a whole lot of extra money when we were growing up. We didn't go on huge, flashy vacations every year or get every toy that lit up in front of us. However, I do think that we had a pretty ideal childhood in so many ways. Lots of camping, family games, trampoline competitions, neighbors and friends coming over. We were allowed to craft away with pretty much anything we could dig up in the house. We went to the library. We played and pretended for hours on end. I also remember a lot of Saturdays, being buckled into the big blue van and taking day trips around the city. Granville Island, White Rock beach, Horseshoe Bay, Stanley Park. I have lots of happy memories of those days. I remember when Expo 86 came to Vancouver and just before it opened, the big silver ball (I forget what it was called for that event) opened up and my dad took me down. I remember I was wearing a kilt and eating a caramel apple and I had a super time with him. He followed me around with his camera and I have pictures of me with my feathered hair and huge glasses in the front. Fast forward 26 years (whoa) and my dad and I returned to the silver ball...now Science World in Vancouver, in my blue van packed full of kids, and camera equipment. Full circle, baby. We stopped by Starbucks on the way, of course, for our kick start and then headed in with our two free passes (thanks to my sister), which soothed our frugal Dutch natures. It was such a great day. The kids ran around and touched and played with everything. My dad laughed and I was running around taking pictures. It was a busy day and I assigned him a kid to watch as all three ricocheted around the rooms trying everything. It was more than once that I found my dad playing in the water or banging the musical instruments and said, "Hey, where is.....?" Good times.

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The wheelchair races.

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This was a neat spot that alternately turned from a window to a mirror.

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Then Uncle Dano and Cousin Quinny came to hang out with us. Quinn was digging all the action.

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At the end we left because my dad and I were worn to a nub after crawling through the beaver dam. We packed up the kids and away we went. I'm so happy for these opportunities to make memories for my kids like this. I have a pretty cool dad, for sure.