Summer Travel – Toronto, Canada

Della finally got her passport so her dad and I decided a short trip to Toronto, Canada would be fun.  Della is great on planes and she loves flying. She doesn’t even get nervous when there’s turbulence. She says it feels like she’s on a roller coaster. Thank goodness because having a crying and nervous kid on a plane is no fun. We wanted to go somewhere quick and fun, so Canada was a great choice. We took a quick flight to Toronto and enjoyed four days of wonderful weather, food, and people.

The first day, we arrived, we went to Niagara Falls. Della loved it. If the kid could have jumped in the waterfall, she probably would have. I have to admit, I was impressed to. We both love the water so seeing the waterfall was so cool. Her dad is from Niagara Falls, NY, so he wasn’t fazed. Shoot, he could walk to the waterfalls from his childhood home.  I was amazed at the people who got in the little boat to go into the waterfall. Umm… no. Standing by the rail was good for us. Since Dad’s family lives right across the bridge, we decided to drive over and have a mini family reunion and visit the NY side of the falls. The NY side was quieter and calmer than the Canadian side but we still enjoyed it.

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Day two consisted of Ripley’s Aquarium, CN Tower, trains, and boat watching. Animals and water made for one happy kid. What kid doesn’t love sharks, fish, and all the other crazy sea life. Dad and I had a great time ourselves. I must say we did fall in love with the pink jellyfish. They were so majestic and hypnotizing. We starting thinking we could have these at home but that thought quickly went away when I remember how I almost go stung by one at the beach. Some things are better admired from afar.

Next, we made our way of the maze of kids and parents in the aquarium gift shop to and exit to see the Rogers Centre and CN Tower. We didn’t get to catch the game but we got to take a peak from the glass floor in the CN Tower. The line for the tower tour was crazy but moved pretty quickly but not fast enough for a restless toddler. The excitement built as we took the elevator to the top and exited to see the beautiful skyline of the city. Della was so hyped. We decided to eat lunch in the restaurant and enjoy the boats and planes.  The food was pretty good and thankfully they had cheese pizza for my picky eater. Outside the tower, we quickly took in the train exhibit and called it a day.

Day three was all about the CNE.  The Canadian National Exhibition is a big festival/event  that takes place right before and into the Canadian Labour Day. There were games, rides, shows, and food. They had a building just for food places. Della enjoyed the farm animals and games. We didn’t ride anything but we walked around the all the gift stations and bought a couple of gifts. Since we had an early flight the next morning, we called it a day so we could rest and pack for the flight home.

Waterfalls, sea life, boats and family made the trip a huge success. Della didn’t want to leave and stills talks about the waterfalls today. Maybe, when it gets warmer, we can go back for the weekend.

Share your summer vacation and what fun things you did with your family. Also, share any recommendations for family friendly trips.

How We Make Co-Parenting Work

I get so many questions about how I get along with Della’s father or how do we make co-parenting work.  There’s the “Does he have a say in what you do for her” or ” How do can you stand to talk to him” or the “Don’t you hate him now that you are not together”?  People are often surprised by my response.

Yes, he does have a say in her life.  I don’t concern him with the routine day-to-day stuff but for important things, like her health or daycare, I do consult him.  Now, if he has her and has a question, he calls me and asks for advice.  I think  it has more to do with her being a girl and he only raised boys.  No, we don’t hate each other.  We are actually really good friends and we talk all the time and it really helped that we were friends before we had a child together.  We have no intentions of ever getting back together.  He has moved on with his life and is in a relationship with a wonder person and I have moved on with my life.  I actually talk to both him and his wife and there is open communication between all of us.

The most important thing, to him and me, is our daughter knows she is love and wanted.  We make sure she is able to talk to either of us whenever she wants.  She can call her dad, stepmom, or brothers, at anytime, and they will talk to her or video chat with her.  She spends weekends or weekdays, when he’s not working, with her family.

I grew up in a home with both my parents.  They were married for almost 40 years, until my dad passed.  Even though my dad was in the home, my mom was a single parent in raising us. Now, my dad worked everyday and provided a home for us (my mom also worked just as many or more hours), but he wasn’t there for my sister and me, as a dad.  He didn’t show us the love, little kids needed, growing up.  We rarely got hugs or conversations, he didn’t ask us about school, boys, the sports we played, and he never came to one game or awards ceremony. So, as you can image, I went looking for that love in the wrong way and caused myself a lot of pain and heartache.

I never want Della to feel the loneliness and hurt I felt growing up.  I never want her to wish her dad would hold her, play with her, or say something nice to her.  I never want her to feel like she doesn’t matter.  He dad shows her all the things, and more, I wished my dad would have shown me.  Even her brothers are protective of her and they are much older than her.  And yes, she has them wrapped around her finger, and I love it.  Our whole family loves it.  We don’t want her to feel she needs to look to a boy or man, outside her family, to get the love she is missing from her dad.

So, how do we make co-parenting work- we put our daughter’s needs and wants first.  No matter how we feel about each other or if we have disagreements, we always make sure we put her first.