My blog

A little bit about me and a lot about the things we do.

Tuesday, 29 December 2015

A Quarter of a Century

Today my baby turns 25!  It is so hard to believe that our little boy has grown up.  He has had a busy year.  He started the year living in the Yukon and ended up moving south to his dream job.  He bought a house and his little family of 2 dogs and a cat keep him busy.  The most exciting thing about today is having him home with us to celebrate this special day with him.  We have so enjoyed being closer to him and being able to spend time with him every couple of weeks.


I thought I should share a few pictures from years gone by of our little boy.
One of our special spots in Sharbot Lake Provincial Park
Fishing with Papa
Christmas 1993 with gifts from Grandma and Grandpa Clark
On the backyard rink in Frankford
Yup, he's all grown up now....but he will always be my special baby boy! 

Saturday, 26 December 2015

The Day After

The build up to Christmas is always pretty big....even bigger when you have little children around.  This year it seemed like a pretty relaxed preparation time.  Rachael came to join Ron and I on Christmas Eve and we had dinner, went to church and then played games.  In the morning we did the traditional Christmas picture.
Okay maybe not quite traditional but you work with what you have.  We opened our gifts and were  blessed with some very thoughtful gifts.  We had an untraditional Christmas dinner of salmon and lots of veggies.  I did put a cranberry sauce on the salmon to make it more festive.  It was good.  We played some more games and then Rachael left.  The animals and I are just relaxing this morning while Ron is working. 

Two more sleeps and then our boy will come and then we will do Christmas and his birthday.  So let the festivities continue.  Turkey and dressing, pumpkin pie and all the fixings will be on the menu.  Better late than never...so no let down from Christmas Day...it's still coming.

Thursday, 24 December 2015

A Week of Celebrations

Last week this time we were at our son's graduation.  It was an exciting time seeing him accomplish his goal.  The smile on on his face showed us that all his determination has paid off.  It was a proud moment for us.  After the ceremony we went to a grad dinner and it was nice to meet some of his classmates who have become his good friends.

On Monday we headed to our son's  for the night.  We had a simple turkey dinner and played some games.  It was an early Christmas celebration.  The next day we went into the city and bought a gift for the graduate and then went to the Japanese Village for lunch.  It was a delicious meal and a wonderful experience.  They cook the meal right in front of you.
Last night Ron and I went to the Trochu Arboretum and Gardens Christmas light display.  It was a beautiful night.  We walked the path through 9 out of 12 days of Christmas.  Each year they add a few more days so we will have to go back next year to see if they have made it to the 12 days.  We sipped on hot chocolate and listened to Christmas music.

Today I went out for lunch with a friend while Ron started back to work.  I'm waiting for Rachael to arrive so I can enjoy another cup of tea.  Our boy is starting work today so we will celebrate Christmas with him in a few days but his animal farm will be here with us.  Hopefully we will get to FaceTime with Jenn and the kids but I am sure there is lots of celebrating there with four little ones.

Merry Christmas from Ron and I!


Monday, 14 December 2015

Island Time

On Thursday Ron started his four days off and off we flew to Vancouver Island to spend some time with my sister and her family.  We landed just after a very bad wind storm and had a delicious supper at Carol's.  Carol and Mike live in a beautiful home with a view of the ocean and on clear days...the mountains.  After a relaxing evening and meeting the puppies we settled in for the night.
In the morning we were treated to an amazing breakfast courtesy of Mike.  Yum!
Through the day we had a nice visit with Mike's parents and then spent time decorating the house.  For supper our nephew, Dustin and his family arrived.  It was such a nice visit.
On Saturday Carol and Mike went off to work and we drove to Nanaimo to see our nephew's son play hockey.  He was the little goalie just like his dad!


It was another stormy day on the island with lots of rain and wind but we made the most of it.  When we picked Carol up from work the power was out there and at their home but we enjoyed a wonderful dinner at Mike's parents.
 




When we arrived back to Carol and Mike's the power was still out so we cuddled around the fireplace and enjoyed a little visit.

picture taken with a flash...it was really dark


Sunday morning we said our goodbyes at the airport after a wonderful weekend.  It is great being that close to my sister....just a quick plane ride away.

Sunday, 6 December 2015

Seize The Day

This past week we went to two concerts.  The first one was Mercy Me.  They are one of my favourite gospel groups.  They are so sincere and SO good.  It was in Calgary and they had the Philharmonic orchestra accompanying them.  Amazing!  The first half was their familiar songs and then they did a Christmas package.  It was great!
Then on Friday night we went to a Brian Doerksen and Carolyn Arends concert right here in Three Hills.  I had been to Brian Doerksen concert once before in Belleville when Ron was at depot and it was so good.  Brian is the worship director at the bible college here and he writes some of the best Christian worship songs.  
Carolyn Arends sang many new Christmas songs but the one song that stuck out that night was "Seize the Day."  I've decided that that is what I want to do.  I know it won't be easy but I want to enjoy the moments.  I don't want to feel guilty for not doing anything when I don't feel like doing anything and I want to make the best of the times throughout my day.

So after coming from church I sit with my tea and homemade jam jam and seize the moment to just enjoy this Christmas season.
Hoping you seize your day!

Thursday, 26 November 2015

Settling in...and it's about time!

It seems like it has taken me longer to settle in our home here.  My good friend, Cheryl says that I have lots of reasons for that but finally it is feeling like home.  Last week the final touches were done in the basement and we were able to get the furniture back in place.  Yesterday, I put up Christmas decorations, sorted bins and cleaned the house.  I thought it would be a good time to take pictures and share what my home looks like.

When you walk in the front door you enter the kitchen which opens up into the living room.


The living room looks out over the prairie and a wonderful curvy train track which I love.  My last living room overlooked the detachment.

Walking in the front door of the house you see the kitchen and living room and if you go to the left you find an L shaped hallway.  The first door leads you to my laundry space and a door into the garage.
It is so nice having a garage again and the truck and motorcycle fit in quite nicely.

When you continue down the hall you find our messy little office, "Sarah's" bedroom and bathroom.

At the end of the hall is our bedroom.  There is a door that leads out of the bedroom to the deck that runs the whole length of the house.  We have an en-suite and a walk in closet.

Back down the hall towards the kitchen is the stairs to the recroom and more bedrooms.

It is quite a multipurpose area and lots of room for us to exercise and relax.  Behind the exercise equipment are the storage and furnace rooms.  These rooms still need some attention but I thought I would share them as well so you get the whole picture of the house.

At the other end of the recroom are our guests rooms.  There are two bedrooms with a bathroom and a nice little area in between.

Yes, our house is starting to feel like our home.  Still some boxes to unpack but I have time.  I'm sure we won't move for a couple of years anyway.

Friday, 20 November 2015

Counting Down

It is always fun to have something to look forward to and it seems like there is lots to count down for us right now.

  • 85 days until our next cruise....love thinking about fun in the sun!
  • 35 days until Christmas.
  • 28 days until Stephen's graduation.  That will be exciting and a very proud moment for us.
  • 19 days until we fly to Vancouver Island to spend the weekend with my sister and her husband.
  • 4 days until I pull out the Christmas decorations and decorate a new house. 
  • a few hours until we go to Stephen's for the weekend.  We are packing cross country skis because it looks like there will be great snow to get some exercise in.
  • a few minutes until lunch...time to eat, pack and hit the road.
10, 9, 8, 7, 6, 5, 4, 3, 2....1!  Time to get going!

Saturday, 14 November 2015

41 Days Until Christmas

I love Christmas!  I like the lights, the decorations, wrapping gifts and writing cards.  I enjoy just going into the malls and seeing the glitter and sparkle of decorations.  I have already researched the best Chrismas light tours around our area.  A few weeks ago I went to Red Deer for a Chrismas market but I was excited when Rachael mentioned about going to a Christmas market at Spruce Meadows.
We had no idea what to expect but we were excited about the day and we were not disappointed.  With tea in hand we found the area.  The grounds were amazing.  It is an equestrian facility that hosts many competitions throughout the year.  When we walked into the main building we were greeted not by horses in the stalls but reindeer. 

Rows and rows of lights lined the ceiling of the complex.  Stall after stall
and booth after booth we toured the whole area.

From locally made treats and crafts to international finds we strolled through the converted barn.   Along the way we sampled chocolate, fudge, soups, cheese and anything else that was offered to us.  I even had my shoes shined..good thing i wore leather ones.  Along the way carollers were either singing on stage or strolling along the aisles.



We thought we would only be there a couple of hours but we used the entire afternoon.  We were definitely put into the Christmas spirit.  With our purchases hanging off our arms we headed back to the vehicle but just had to stop for a memory picture.
On our way through the city we stopped for a nice dinner and snow began to lightly fall.  As I drove out of Calgary Christmas lights were being turned on.  Yes, Christmas is in the air and so this morning I will take down my fall decorations, put them away and wait patiently for a couple of weeks to get the Christmas decorations out.  In the mean time I will make some Christmas shopping lists, work on a Christmas letter and maybe even listen to Christmas music.

Thursday, 12 November 2015

Life in Alberta

Living in Isolation for the last two years was an interesting experience.  I can quickly list our visitors from outside our immediate area...Bruce, Lynne and Brad from Swift Current, three of our grandchildren: Sarah, Emma and Jacob and Stephen with his RCMP friend, Andrew.

Life is different here.  It has been very interesting having so many people coming to visit.  We have had family and friends from Ontario, church friends from Swift Current, and Stephen and his friends from the surrounding area.  It has been wonderful but we have missed our Deschambault Lake family.  The boys had been regulars around our table, helped us celebrate special occasions and had played hours of games.  I missed Denise texting or calling asking for sour cream or some other forgotten grocery item.  There was a closeness there that will never be recreated or forgotten.

Thankfully we have Facebook to keep in touch with each other and to share a laugh at a memory.  But, this week we had a special treat when one of our boys was coming to Calgary for a visit.  We were thrilled when Dan and Tiffany decided to take some time to come and visit us.
It was so great to see them, hear about their new experiences and to feed them!  Of course we had to pull the Catan game out and recreate some of those special times.   I am happy to report that I won two out of three games....just like old times.  (Not quite, but it's my blog)

Yes, Three Hills is a great place to live and it looks like it is a wonderful place to visit too.  For reservations please get in contact with me!




Wednesday, 4 November 2015

The Things I have in Common with Stephen Harper

I'm not really that political but I found a big similarity with the outgoing prime minister this morning when I saw the headlines so I thought it would be a good time for a blog.

First of all we are both in our 50's.  We are both rather "conservative."  He has a super supportive spouse and two children...a boy and a girl.  So we connect in our family life.

I live close to Calgary which is his home riding but we were both born and raised in Ontario.  We have lived in a company home before (perhaps a parsonage is a little different then Sussex Drive but just go with me.). So again I understand the moving out of a home that belongs to someone else.

But the biggest thing is the headline this morning.
Yup, Stephen Harper resigned today and so did I!  Okay, maybe he hasn't done it three times but this time I thought if Stephen Harper calls it quits I might as well do it too.  Effective today I am retired or until something else comes up.  I'm wondering if Stephen and I might get together soon to discuss our future plans.

So any other similarities...we both wear glasses.  He has grey hair....nope not the same there.  (Checked the calendar, hair appointment tomorrow).  

Happy retirement Stephen Harper.  I'm going to clean the house, knit or read.  What will you be doing?



Saturday, 24 October 2015

Making the Most Of It

Life goes by way too fast not to enjoy every moment.  When Ron and I have our days off together we make plans to add a new adventure to our memories.  On Monday we started off on a three day trek into the mountains.  It is still hard for us to believe that we live so close to the Rockies.  We drove west as far as we needed so that we could enjoy the view and then south to Waterton National Park.  On our way we saw spectacular views like where the prairie meets the mountains.

When we lived in Swift Current we visited the park but it was very busy and crawling with people....now the visitor center was surrounded by other beautiful creatures enjoying the peace and quiet after a busy summer.
 
We took the scenic drive through the park.  Around each steep corner was another beautiful view of the mountains.  My camera shutter was constantly flicking.  The only problem is that pictures don't really give the sights justice.  You really need to experience it for yourself.




It was such a beautiful day and I so enjoyed spending the day with Ron in the mountains.  A friendly deer agreed to take this picture for us.
We arrived in Fernie, B.C. in time for supper and had a nice walk around this beautiful mountain town.  Even from our room the view was amazing.  The next morning we did a little drive to see the ski hill and then headed towards Canmore.  We made a stop at Fort Steele and walked through the historic village there.





As we walked around the fort Ron seemed to be attracting cats.  When he knelt down to pet them they jumped up on him and would snuggle around his neck and even followed him like a little puppy would.  I think he must be the cat whisperer.


Along the way we stopped in Radium for a relaxing dip in the hot springs.  It is so nice to travel when the roads are quiet and you have the attractions along the way almost to yourself.
 


When we arrived in Banff we easily found a spot to park and walk the streets.  This was much different then the last few times we visited this beautiful little town.  We looked through a few stores and treated ourselves to some fudge.

The Home Team was ready to play!
From Banff we drove the short distance into Canmore and spent our second night in the heart of the mountains.  It was another wonderful time of making the most of our days off.  When we got home on Wednesday Ron left for two days of training in Edmonton and I worked Thursday and Friday. 
 
Today we woke up to rain and Ron went to work.  I went to Red Deer with a new friend to a Christmas craft show.  Yup, Christmas is coming very soon.  It will be fun this year to have Stephen around for Christmas time.  I certainly will make the most of that time. 
 
The sun is shining now and it has turned into a beautiful day.  I think I will go and make the most of it!