It is only Saturday afternoon and already we’ve had a packed weekend.  We celebrated the end of the first week of school with dinner at Toshi Sushi.  A big shout-out to my husband’s family for recommending Toshi.  If you haven’t been you are in for a real treat!  The sushi is AMAZING, unique and utterly fantastic.  I will offer some advice: get there early and bring activities for the kids!  The restaurant opens at 5pm and the line up starts before the doors open.  Toshi doesn’t take reservations and the restaurant is teeny tiny.  We arrived at 5:30 and had a 45 minute wait.  I was a bit worried our 3 & 5 year olds would utterly implode, but they were the ones who decided to tough out the wait.  Our boys are ridiculously enamoured with sushi and were eager to try Toshi.  I’m so glad the kids held it together.  What a treat!  Be sure to order the box sushi, the eggplant in miso and the maguru gomazake (tuna in a sesame sauce).

Saturday afternoon the kids woke up full of energy.  We headed down to Robson Square to skate around the outdoor rink.  We went last year but the kids were a bit little and tired quickly.  This year they had a blast.  I’m still thankful that our little one needs the blue plastic skating-helper.  I can pretend to be pushing him around the rink, when in fact I’m as reliant on that skating helper as our 3 year old is!  We arrived at 10:50; I recommend timing your arrival a bit better than us.  They clean the ice at 11am and it is 15 minute process.  The rink was also surprisingly busy given the inclement weather.  I think an earlier arrival is definitely in the cards for our next visit.  You can rent skates for $4 and helmets are included.  Make sure you have cash as the nearest ATM is a surprisingly far distance away.

After sweating up a storm on the rink, we took the kids down the street to the ArtStarts Gallery on Richards.  What a fantastic space!  The gallery is FREE, geared to kids, and has hands-on components.  Right now the exhibition is Sound Play.  Our boys were thrilled to be able to bang drums, play musical sounds on instruments from around the world, and record their own sounds.  Be prepared, the experience is loud.  Wonderful, but LOUD!  In addition to the free gallery, on the last Saturday of every month, ArtStarts hosts a free workshop for families.  Be sure to check out their calendar for upcoming events.

After a jam-packed morning, we took the kids to Terra Breads for lunch.  While I am inconsolable over their decision to cancel their lamb sandwich, the ham and raclette is a rather fantastic substitute.  Our boys can’t get enough of Terra Bread’s grilled cheese with homemade ketchup.  We always have to share a macaroon or two to finish off our lunch.

What a great start to our weekend!  Looking forward to Sunday….when we visit the Vancouver Symphony Orchestra for their 2pm Kids’ Koncert.