Happy New Year and Merry Christmas! I hope the holiday was good to everyone!
Jason and I returned last night from a whirlwind road trip through Alberta and British Columbia...
Dec 22nd: Vancouver to Canmore
Dec 23rd: Canmore to Drumheller (drop off Bella girl)
Dec 24th: Drumheller to Calgary, flight to Fort McMurray
Dec 28th: Fort McMurray flight to Calgary, back to Drum
Dec 29th: Drumheller to Canmore
Dec 31st: Canmore to Nelson
Jan 2nd: Nelson to Vancouver, stop in Kelowna
Our little Toyota Matrix performed flawlessly throughout the trip, suffering only two rock chips in the windshield and racking up 3200km! It was also great to bring along Bella. Having to leave her in Drumheller with relatives over Christmas sucked, but Air Canada had an embargo on all pets over the holiday season. Stupid Air Canada!
In Canmore, we stayed alone at Jason's cousin Tim's beautiful vacation home - the place was massive, decked out with a clawfoot tub, fireplace, a stunning view of a whack of local mountains and PRIVACY!!!
Canmore Vacation View #1
Canmore Vacation View #2
Canmore Vacation View #3
In Drum, we stayed in a teeny house with many members of Jason's mom's family and a menagerie of animals. Andrea, my sis-in-law, took care of Bella for us since she was visiting at the same time with her mom. We even managed to hit the Royal Tyrell Museum to take in the amazing dinosaur exhibits. SO COOL!
Studly in Sorels (and the toque I knitted!)
Fort McMurray brought the storm of my immediate family - all five of us plus husbands and wives and little baby Ashley! Ice hockey on the frozen pond, walks through the woods with their dog Boomer, playing with Ashley and eating like it was going out of style! I also raided my sister Karen's maternity supply and managed to snag a few stylish tops and pants, along with unisex onsies and sleepers for my little monkey. The baby's antics have evolved into full-blown acrobatics now and I feel them all the time. Very cool and reassuring that everything is progressing normally!
In Nelson, we visited with Russ n' Jenn and their 2.5yr old Annie. Annie is about 30lbs of nonstop action - talking a mile a minute and continually batting her doe eyes to get away with murder! She rules the roost there, to be sure! But a cutie non-the-less. Unfortunately Bella wasn't allowed in their beautiful straw-bale house, so she stayed out in the car :( Sigh.
Lastly, in Kelowna we visited with Faye, Ang's mom. She was doing quite well and was really happpy to see us and of course, my tummy! I think she is quite excited to be a grandma, as strange as that may seem. She really wants great things for us, and that is very comforting.
Snowy Day on the ice of Lake Louise
When the Christmas season kicked up, Jason worried about his grieving being heightened since it was during the Dec/Jan timeframe two years ago that Ang was taken to the hospital with no intent of bringing her back home. January 24th will mark the second anniversary of her passing. I think he has fared pretty well so far this year, taking the dog out for solo strolls when he needs to be alone, or holing up with a book on the couch. Last year he went to Tofino for a few days by himself, I set up a cabin for him and Bella to stay in. He went surfing, ate well and spent the day quietly. This year he will stay here. It's strange how time passes.
A few minutes ago, after starting this post, I found out that my grandpa passed away this morning. He would have been 78 on Jan 14th. He only got to see one of his great grandchildren. My grandma is a mess and my mom and dad are not in town to be with her.
I guess I'm still in shock because I haven't started bawling yet. His passing is no surprise, we all knew he wasn't doing well. He's been in the hospital for months. They had a hard life, my grandparents Dumas. When I compare them to my dad's parents, they seem decades older. It's strange how time treats people differently.
I think I will wander home before this news hits me fully.