Tuesday, September 23, 2014

29 Questions.

I was browsing the interwebs last night, following link after link, and I came across this page. I thought it was really interesting, and decided to answer these questions myself! :)

1. Which teacher had the biggest influence on your life?
I'd have to say my choir teacher in high school, Miss Nattrass. She kept me interested in singing, and encouraged me to keep singing even after high school was done.

2. What’s the most spontaneous thing you’ve ever done?
I don't do a lot of big spontaneous things, but I tend to buy compulsively.

3. If you could go back in time, what year would you travel to?
I wouldn't want to go back.

4. What was your favourite toy or game growing up?
I always loved playing cards :)

5. What's the craziest event you've ever witnessed?
Oh boy... I saw a warehouse fire up close when I was little. I saw a twister from a distance coming back from the States once. I saw a police chase down Portage a few years ago that ended with the car catching the corner of the back of a city transit bus.

6. What’s the worst job you’ve ever had?
Sal's. Hands down.

7. If you had a superpower, even for just one day, what would it be?

8. If you could go back in time, what is one piece of advice you would give your younger self?
Mom really does love you and only wants the best for you. She just doesn't always know how to express herself in a way that you would understand. She means well, but finds it hard to know how to reach out to you. Don't worry, things will work out, just don't give up on her :)

9. If you could have been a child prodigy what would you have wanted your skill to be?
Playing cello. It's such a beautiful instrument, I wish I could have learned to play at a young age.

10. What is your favourite thing about the town where you live?
Each area has its own feel, its own vibe. I like it :)

11. What was your favourite food when you were a kid?

12. If you could stay a certain age forever, what age would it be?
I wouldn't want to. I actually look forward to growing older and getting laugh lines and just enjoying life as it comes :)

13. If you could witness any event—past, present or future—what would it be?
I've always wondered what it'd be like to have known Jesus as he walked this earth.

14. If you could meet anyone, living or dead, who would it be?
Jesus, face to face :)

15. What would you title the autobiography of your life?
Oh geez... I don't know!

16. What was the first thing you bought with your own money?
Probably candy haha.

17. Would you want to know the exact day of your death?

18. What happened the time in your life when you were the most nervous to do something?
I was most nervous when I flew to France in grade 12.

19. What do you think is the most important invention in history?

20. Who would win a fight—Chuck Norris or Jack Bauer?
Chuck Norris, duh!

21. If you could steal one thing, without consequences, what would it be?
I wouldn't.

22. What was your favourite summer activity as a kid?
Going to camp! :D

23. If you were a ghost, where would you haunt?
I wouldn't wanna be a ghost... :(

24. What kind of car did you wish you had when you were a kid?
I don't even remember lol

25. If you could breed two totally different animals together, what new animal would you create?
This is a silly question...

26. What subject do you wish you had paid more attention to in school?
Social studies.

27. Which do you think is more likely—extraterrestrials or ghosts?

28. Is there anything you wish would come back into fashion?
Meh. I follow my own style haha.

29. If you could learn one new skill, what would it be?
How to play cello! :D

"Let It All Out" Relient K

Let it all out, get it all out
Rip it out remove it
Don't be alarmed when the wound begins to bleed
Cause we're so scared to find out what this life's all about
So scared we're going to lose it
Not knowing all along that's exactly what we need

And today I'll trust you with the confidence of a man who's never known defeat
But tomorrow upon hearing what I did I will stare at you in disbelief
Oh, inconsistent me, crying out for consistency

And you said I know that this will hurt
But if I don't break your heart then things will just get worse
If the burden seems too much to bear
Remember the end will justify the pain it took to get us there

And I'll let it be known at times I have shown
Signs of all my weakness
But somewhere in me there is strength
And you promise me that you believe
In time I will defeat this
Cause somewhere in me there is strength

And today I'll trust you with the confidence
Of a man who's never known defeat
And I'll try my best to just forget
That that man isn't me

And you said I know that this will hurt
But if I don't break your heart then things will just get worse
If the burden seems too much to bear
Remember the end will justify the pain it took to get us there

You said I know that this will hurt (I know this will hurt)
But if I don't break your heart then things will just get worse
When the burden seems too much to bear
Remember the end will justify the pain it took to get us there

Reach out to me, make my heart brand new
Every beat will be for you, for you
And I know you know you touched my life
When you touched my heavy heart and made it light

Monday, September 22, 2014

"Tear My Wings Apart" Lynnea Malley

Spiral to the ground
I'll run home, oh I'll run home
Maybe clear my mind
I don't know, no I don't know

But when I'm back again
I'll fall back down since
When I try to hide
My thoughts always find me

No rain anymore
Just the clouds, just the clouds
Hear me screaming, sure
Not as loud, no not as loud

Tear my wings apart
I'll just boil gently
And what more is anger
Than just a motivated form of sadness

I'm giving up on me
I feel it now, I can't breathe
Don't know how to change myself
No question now, I can't stay this way

Monday, September 8, 2014


I grew up a swimmer.

I was in swimming lessons as far back as I can remember.

I LOVED to swim! :)

I loved the feeling of floating.

Splashing around.

Earning my swim badges.

I hated getting out.

It was always so cold in the change rooms.

I remember this one specific day at Sargent Park Pool, after getting out of the water, I just felt miserable because I was so cold.

I wrapped myself in my towel, and I sat on the bench in front of my locker, and I cried.

My mom would usually wait for me outside of the change room for me to come out, but when I wasn't coming out, she came in looking for me.

And found me crying.

She asked me what was wrong. I told her that I was so cold.

She reassured me, that I just had to get dried off, get dressed, and I'll be warm in no time.

I hated having to unwrap my towel, because then the cold air could get at me.

But she was right, and I knew it.

So I towelled off, got dressed, and yeah, I warmed up in no time.

Right now, I kinda feel like I did when I sat there and cried.

I've made the decision to leave my church.

There's a lot of reasons behind it that I'm not gonna get into in this post.

But yesterday was my last Sunday as worship team leader.

I only told a few people - my pastors, the worship team, and a couple people in the church.

This whole experience has felt like my swimming lessons.

You get to the pool, stand at the edge, and jump in.

And it's cold! Kinda takes your breath away for a couple seconds.

But you get used to it, you get your bearings, and you go have fun, learning things along the way.

That's what it was for me. I stood at the edge for a long, long time. Then finally it was time for me to jump in.

And it took me a bit to figure it out, to get my bearings.

But I did, and I had fun with it, learning things along the way.

But, just like swimming lessons, all things must come to an end.

The time has come when the Lord has called me out of the pool, this lesson is over.

And just like at the end of swim time, you gotta put your pool stuff away - any flutter boards, or balls, or life jackets you've used, they need to be set up for the next group to use.

Today I sent Nat - the new team leader - the song list, all the lyrics, and all the PDF files for all the songs in the music library. Got that stuff set up for him to use.

And now I find myself sitting in the locker room, stuck between swimming and the rest of life, just feeling miserable. Knowing that it's time to move on, yet wanting to go back to where it was comfortable and fun, where I knew what I was doing.

And I hate this place.

But, just like my mom came to reassure me, I know that the Lord is reassuring me, telling me that yeah, this moment right now sucks, but I don't just need to wallow here being miserable. I just gotta dry myself off, get dressed, and I'll be warm in no time.

And hey, there's always another swimming lesson next week. ;)

Saturday, August 16, 2014

Roasted Garlic Mushrooms

16 even-sized open cup mushrooms, stalks cut level
3 tbsp olive or coconut oil
1/4 c unsalted butter, softened
3 cloves garlic, chopped very finely
2 tbsp fresh thyme, chopped
1 1/2 tbsp lemon juice
salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
1/4 c fresh breadcrumbs

Preheat the oven to 200C/400F/gas mark 6. Lightly fry the mushrooms, cap-side down, in hot oil for 20 seconds.

Arrange the mushrooms in a shallow roasting tin with the stalks facing upwards.

Mix together the butter, garlic, thyme, lemon juice and seasoning. Spoon a little garlic butter on to each mushroom, then lightly press the breadcrumbs on top. Either refrigerate for later use, or cook immediately in the oven for 10 minutes.

Friday, August 1, 2014

Day 13

I avoided this post for almost a week, because it just makes me really sad that my trip is over. It makes me sad that I had to say goodbye to a family that I feel like I just didn't get enough time with.

Anyways, Sunday we got up for church. It was an interesting service, not as terrible as I thought it'd be (I was told that they always sing the songs soooo super slow, but they didn't this week lol). Then we went for lunch at East Side Mario's, I finally got to try it! It was pretty tasty :) I had some kind of pasta dish with pesto and goat cheese and roasted bell peppers. It was alright, but I'm just not sure the goat cheese and pesto paired well with the rest of the dish. But it was good, and I was satisfied :)

Then we headed back to the house, and I finished packing my last-minute stuff. Then hung out in the living room with Deanna, she was reading her book, and I started working on my new memoir book I got - Book of Me: A Do-It-Yourself Memoir.

Deanna offered to drive me down to Calgary airport so I didn't have to take the Greyhound, and we could hang out a few more hours. Had I taken the bus, I would've had to be at the depot for 3, whereas with her driving me, we got to the airport around 6ish. Ayren came with us, she hung out in the back seat, and Deanna and I chatted in the front on the way.

It was really sad when we got to the airport. Not gonna lie, as soon as I was inside after hugs and goodbyes, I cried. Not just tearing up, I full out cried. I hated that I had to leave. But, it had to be done. Flights had been booked, and I did need to get home eventually.

The flight was fine. My mom met me at the airport back home, and she gave me a ride home. She had a bag of fruit for me, which was very much appreciated, cuz I was pretty hungry. And it was good to see my mom again, and Abby, whom she brought along :)

Anyways, got in the door, dropped my bags, and crashed into bed.

Saturday, July 26, 2014

Day 12

Today was my last full day here in Red Deer. And that makes me sad :(

But, today was a good day :) I got up early (translation: alarm went off at 8, I dragged my butt outta bed at 8:30), had a shower, and we went to the farmers' market. It was really cool! :) I got a big bag of garden peas for $2, some cinnamon buns for breakfast tomorrow, a strawberry Nutella crepe (was soooo good!), a jar of honey liqueured blueberries, and a bag of caramel popcorn, which was suuuuuuper tasty! It was a nice soft melt-in-your-mouth caramel, and there were nuts mixed in too, very yummy! I'm gonna have to make a batch at home! :)

Then we went back to the house for a bit before heading out again to Chapters. Before heading in to chapter, Deanna, Ayren, and I went geocaching, cuz there were two just across the street. The first one we couldn't find, but the second one we got :)

I got a couple books at Chapters: The 100-Year-Old Man Who Climbed Out The Window And Disappeared, and The Secret Lives of Men and Women: A PostSecret Book. Pretty pumped for them both! :)

Man, I bought a lot of books out here! :)

Anyways, after Chapters we stopped at the grocery store for a few things, then came back to the house. I baked a couple pumpkin pies (by request), but they were made with canned pumpkin, and it wasn't MY recipe from home, so they weren't the greatest. They were alright, but not the greatest lol. And Deanna made her jalapeno cheese bread, yuuuuuum!!!!! :D

I stitched some more, actually getting quite a bit done out here :)

For supper we had grilled cheese sammiches (made with the cheese bread) and bacon-wrapped cream-cheese-stuffed jalapeno peppers. They were super good! :D And of course, pie and ice cream for dessert. I put some of the blueberries I got today on my ice cream, it was deeeeeeelish! :)

After dinner, the Scotts played the Big Bang Theory version of Clue, and I stitched away... Then we went downstairs and watched Monty Python's And Now For Something Completely Different. Classic! :)

A couple episodes of Big Bang Theory later, I headed to my room to start packing. Soooo glad I bought another suitcase LOL! I'm pretty much done, just need my PJs, my charging cords, and my morning bathroom stuff.

I'm really sad that I'm leaving... :( The Scotts are so amazing, and I'm going to miss them so much! I already miss them so much!!! :'(

But I am thankful that I've been able to spend these few days with them, with new memories to bring back home. And TWO loaves of jalapeno cheese bread!!!!! :D

I almost hate to admit it too, but I'm actually pretty excited to go back to work. I miss it, I miss the adrenaline during the pushes, and most of all I miss my friends there. It'll be good to be back :)

Tomorrow is Sunday, and so we're off to church. After church I think we're going for lunch at East Side Mario's - they have one here in Red Deer, but not in Winnipeg... WAT.

Then Ian and Deanna offered to drive me down to Calgary airport - how sweet is that!!! :) I did have a Greyhound ticket booked and paid for, but it was only $20, and it'd cost me another $20 just to be able to exchange my ticket for a later date, but that'd be a waste. So I get to spend more time with them, yay!!! :D

So I'm off to bed. My alarm is going off at 9am (8.5 hours), and I should tryyyyy to get some sleep, since I don't seem to be able to sleep the night before I travel... Off to bed! :)

Friday, July 25, 2014

Day 11

It was a bit of a lazy day today, though I did get out and do stuff :)

I slept in til about 10, but I didn't get out of bed until just after 12. Headed upstairs, had a banana for breakfast, then pulled out my stitching.

Deanna got home from work not long afterwards, and Ian made soup and leftover burger patties for lunch. After lunch, Ian, Deanna, and I headed out to the Christian bookstore here. I got two new books! :)

Then we stopped at Costco for a few things, then headed back to the house.

It was quite the rainy day today, so we didn't get out to do any geocaching. :(

I stitched a bit more, then supper was ready (wraps and caesar salad, with ice cream for dessert). After supper we played a game of Phase 10, it was fun :)

Then we went downstairs to watch Dr. No (the first 007 movie, with Sean Connery as Bond), and an episode of The Vicar of Dibley. Oh British comedy, it's great :)

And now it's just after midnight, so I'm heading to bed. Tomorrow we're planning on going to the farmer's market, so wake-up time is 8. Better get some sleep! :)

Day 10

Today was a looooong day, but sooooo great!!! :D

I ended up sleeping in this morning; I woke up 8 minutes before I had to be at the bus stop to catch a bus into Edmonton to catch the Greyhound to Red Deer. I made it though! I got to the bus stop just as the bus was turning the corner, hooray! :D

So, made it to downtown Edmonton, made it onto the Greyhound bus, made it to Red Deer! And here I am! :D

Oh my gosh, it was soooo great to see the Scotts again! :D Ian and Ayren picked me up at the bus depot – after a bit of a mix-up of timing LOL! But all was well :) And Ayren had some leftover chocolate chip pancakes for me to chow down on, yay! :D

So, they picked me up, we stopped by the office where Deanna was working so we could say hi.

For those of you who don’t know Deanna, she gives the most amazing hugs I’ve ever experienced. Seriously. The way she just wraps you up in her arms and holds you tight… There is so much love radiating from her, what a God-gift she is! :)

She had to get back to work, so the three of us headed to the house. Duncan came up to say hi, I found Joshua downstairs and said hi lol then I settled into a chair upstairs to start reading “The Fault In Our Stars” by John Green.

That book needs its own blog post. And it has it.

So, started reading, got about a quarter of the way through by the time Deanna got home. Then Ian, Deanna, Duncan, Ayren, and I headed out to do some geocaching at Bower Pond! Yet another family I’ve introduced to this! :D

We found a few there, then headed back to the house for dinner: burgers, yum! :D

After dinner, I read a bit more (hnnng!), then Deanna, Ayren, and I headed out to do some more geocaching around the neighbourhood. We ended up finding three caches, all part of a Skylanders series that The Hay Team has set up. Really cool actually! :)

Then back to the house for ice cream, yay! :D We also played a game of Apples to Apples – love that game! And what a game it was! So fun! :D Ian was the winner, Ayren came in second. I ended up the cards Insane, Awkward, and something else that I can’t remember. Much fun was had! :)

Then Ayren headed to bed, the rest of the Scotts headed downstairs to finish watching The Hobbit (they started it last night), and I stayed upstairs and finished my book.

Finished it at about 1am. Totally wrecked. What an amazingly beautiful book.

So now I’m downstairs in my (Duncan’s) room – thanks Duncan! :) Just writing this blog, then gonna attempt to sleep. Still trying to sort out my brain though lol so we’ll see how that goes…. ;)

Tomorrow I am planning to sleep in (yay!), Deanna is only working a half day, and the rest of the crew is home all day. I don’t think there’s much planned for the afternoon – though I am hoping to find some more caches – but I do know that somewhere in there tomorrow we’re gonna go to Kerry Wood Nature Centre. And the girls seem to be pretty hooked on geocaching, so they’ve already asked about finding any there lol I’m excited! :)


"The Fault In Our Stars" John Green

I read a book today.

I don’t want to tell you what this book is about.

But I want to tell you what this book will do to you.

At least what it did to me.

This book took me on an emotional journey.

I’d be reading one page and laughing about how the characters interact with each other.

Then I’d be three pages later, and have tears running down my cheeks.

And that’s jarring.

Really jarring.

I almost couldn’t handle it. I had to put the book down for a bit every so often just to let my mind catch up to where my emotions were.

And yet I could. Not. Stop. Reading.

Tears streaming down my face, I’d start laughing.

Then I’d flip the page, and more tears would fall.

I don’t even…

I just…





This is a really easy book to get hooked on.

And trust me, when I say hooked, I mean it.

That hook will pull you this way, and that way…

And there’s nothing you can do about it.

Except to keep reading.

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Day 9

Big day today! I was up and out the door by 7:45 and caught the bus to the Greyhound station to pick up my ticket for tomorrow. Then it was a half hour wait until my bus came to go to West Edmonton Mall, so I found a couple geocaches! :)

Made my way to the mall just as it was opening, so I stopped at A&W for some breakfast. Stopped at Bentley's for a carry-on size luggage case, then got to shopping! I bought a few things today - some books, some CDs, a dragon sweater, a few gifts.

It took me four hours just to do the first floor.

Four hours!



I did enjoy a good chunk of time in Chapters. I saw the "Humans of New York" book there, I kind of flipped through it a bit. A picture that really stuck out for me is this one:

The caption beside it said this:

'Make sure you can see the bag.'
'Oh, I didn't realize you were advertising something.'
'Isn't everything beautiful advertising something?'


After the mall, I headed down to Beth's work, she gave me a tour before we headed out for dinner. It looks really good in there! Beth told me that she did a lot of the painting in there herself - all the non-institution-white colour, that is lol! And it looks really good! This was my favourite wall:

It says this:

Our HEARTS are made for WORSHIP

Hear and understand me.
Even though you disagree, please don't make me wrong.
Acknowledge the greatness within me.
Remember to look for my loving intentions.
Tell me the truth with compassion.

Our HANDS are made for SERVICE

Hear the Word of God in your life.
Always recognize Jesus in others.
Now is the time to be present to God.
Do you reflect God's love to those around you?

But my absolute favourite wall item I saw was a picture in Beth's office. It actually hit me really hard, I almost started crying right there...

The text beside it said this:

This picture reveals the heart of God toward you. As you look at the painting, you see not only Jesus wrapping his arms around a fallen man. You see Him wrapping his arms of mercy around you. Your eyes say "Jesus is holding a broken sinner." Your heart says "Jesus is holding me." When you look at the cross you will never need to question if He loves you. He came for you; He died for you; He lives for you. What a tremendous price has been paid. More than all the riches in the entire world. This price was paid so that you could know the joy of being forgiven.


For dinner we went to Swiss Chalet, and spent some time just catching up. It was so great! :) Then we went geocaching, and we found one right at the corner by the restaurant! :)

We also went down by the river to find some more, but we couldn't find any. I had gone down into the bushes to hunt for it, couldn't find it, then couldn't find my way back up again! Made my way back to the car, where Beth had gone to wait for me, and there was a fruit truck there so I bought us some nectarines. Soooo tasty! :D

Then she gave me a ride back to the house, and here I am!

Tomorrow's probably going to be a long day too. I head out at 7am to catch my bus down to Red Deer. Soooo excited to see the Scotts!!!!! :D So I'm gonna jump in the shower then head to bed. Goodnight!

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Day 8

Today was a great day! :D I woke up about 11:30 haha great start! Got up, showered, grabbed a handful of Honey Nut Cheerios (WIN!), then headed out geochaching. I found five today! :D I also got a good picture of a dragonfly :)

Stopped at the store to pick up a gift for Sam and Mike, then headed back to the house to get ready to head out to Taste of Edmonton. As soon as Sam was home from work, we headed out.

I've never experienced anything like Taste of Edmonton, it was really cool!!! You get there and get tickets, and there's a whole lot of food trucks. Each of the trucks has 2 items they're selling, most for 3 tickets, but some are 4, some are 2.

My two favourite things I had were duck confit tacos, and chicken masala perogies, YUMMMMM!!!!!

We were taking pictures as well by the fountain/wading pool area that was there, and a kind stranger offered to take one of the three of us. Some good ones, I think ;)

There were also two geocaches nearby, so we went on a hunt! The first one was really easy, we found it no problem :) The second one was really tough, we couldn't find it :( But probably for the best, there were a lot of muggles around ;)

We headed back to the house, and we're all just getting ready for bed now. Sleeeeepyyyyyyy.......

Plans for tomorrow, I'm going to head in to West Ed Mall in the morning, do some shopping, then meeting up with Beth for a tour of her workplace, then we're going for dinner :) Looking forward to seeing her! :D

Day 7

I apologise, my dear readers, for not posting this last night! I had actually completely forgotten.

So, yesterday! I was able to say goodbye to Peter and big bro before they headed off on their bikes for the day, then Ruth, the little one, and I got in the car. We dropped the little one off at daycare (her first day!), then raced off to the ferries. We were a bit late leaving the house (partially my fault lol whoops...), so I was a bit nervous about getting to the ferries in time. But we made it no problem :)

The ferry was super cool! I was kind of expecting it to be swaying back and forth a bit, but I could barely feel it move at all! I sat inside for a bit, until we got going a ways, then I headed out to the top deck to get some pictures. Contrary to what Alex told me ("It's cool for the first 30 minutes, but the next 50 are just water"), I loved the whole thing! I sat outside for the whole time once I went out! And I actually wish I had gone out right away! Going through the islands was soooo pretty!

We even saw some harbour seals! :D

Once docked, I found my way outside and took a taxi to the airport. I had about 20 minutes before boarding, so I just went through security and headed to my gate. Turns out there's no food stuffs by my gate because it's a newer section, so they're still working on that...

It's a bit funny though, because I went from cross a sea of water, to crossing a sea of clouds... ;)

But once again, got a really great view of the mountains :) <3

It was a good flight, not very much turbulence except for when we were coming down, which is normal anyways. I even got to watch a couple episodes of Friends! :D

Landed in Edmonton, got picked up by Mike (my friend Sam's boyfriend), and it took FOREVER to get back to the house because we got caught in rush hour traffic on the Henday (it's like the perimeter around Edmonton). But we did make it back eventually lol. I was so pumped to see Sam! :D It's been 5 years since I've seen her last - it was at Nat and Jessica's wedding! So we reminisced about camp days, went through pictures on Facebook, watched Star Trek Voyager (heck yes LOL!), had perogies for dinner. Mike headed out to his friend's for a bit, so Sam and I played Frustration - do you remember that game? It's like Trouble, you have your pegs you gotta get around the board and back into your end, the die is in a bubble in the middle that you press to pop it to roll... It was fun lol

Then Mike got back, he got me some bedding stuff for the couch, and we all headed to bed. I was pretty wiped, so I didn't even think about writing this post until I was already snuggled up in the blanket lol!

But hey, better late then never, right? :) Plans for today, I'm gonna head out geocaching while the two are at work. Then I think Mike's gonna rent a wheelchair for Sam (she's got a broken leg) and we're gonna head out to Taste of Edmonton. Sounds cool! :D

Sunday, July 20, 2014

Day 6

Day 6 already? Where has the time gone??? I leave tomorrow! :(

Today I was a bit late getting outta bed... Jumped in the shower, grabbed a banana, and was off to High Point with the Hickmans! Got to see Alex one more time today, that was awesome! :D Should've grabbed a picture with him, dang!

Also got to see LA and her fiance Pete! It was great seeing her again :)

Playing on the worship team was pretty cool, it was great playing with the people there :) Had I known, though, that there wouldn't have been another singer, I would've asked for a mic to be set up too! Oh well, it was fun as it was :)

After church, I went for lunch with LA and Pete, Ed and Kathy Chiu, and a few other people that came with the Chius. We went to Swiss Chalet, and I had the 1/3 rack ribs with rice pilaf and a multigrain bun. Pretty tasty! :)

Conversation was pretty great too! Filled in LA with what I've been up to lately, heard her side as well. Chatted about The Salvation Army, found out that I'm really not alone in how I'm feeling. Which was quite interesting to learn...

Afterwards, LA and Pete gave me a ride back to the house, and I took off on the bike right away to head downtown to Silk Road Tea. My purpose was to pick up some westcoast peppermint tea, but I got pretty much everything else but! :P I grabbed 8 different teas, they all smelled sooooo good!!! :D

Made it back to the house in time for dinner, we had waffles with home-made fruit compote that Ruth made. Sooooo good!!! :D

After dinner, we all headed out to the Gorge to find a few geocaches! :) We found four in total there, sweet! Then we headed back to the house, it was the kids' bedtime.

I didn't really take any pictures today, but I did grab a really good one from down at the Gorge :)

I showed the picture to Ruth and Peter, and the little one wanted to see too, so I showed her. I asked her if she thought it was nice, she said yes, then asked, "Was Jesus there?"

WOW LOL!!! I answered her, yes, because He is everywhere. She had a hard time understanding transcendence, but that's alright lol it was an interesting conversation nonetheless :)

I'm going to have a cup of tea, then perhaps do some stitching for a bit before bed. Tomorrow Ruth and I are heading out at 9am so I can catch a ferry at 10, I'm pretty excited for the adventure across the water! :D From the ferry, I gotta make it down to the airport to catch an flight to Edmonton. I'm pretty excited to see my friend Sam there, and my friend Beth! :D

Until then, goodnight! :)

Day 5

Today was really great! :D

Had a bit of a lazy start to the day. I didn't get out of bed until 10:30. But then I had the house to myself, so I made pancakes! Whole wheat flour, baking powder, an egg, milk, EVOO and almond oil, honey, raisins, hemp hearts, and banana. Grilled in oil, topped with banana and avocado. Pa-dahhh! :D

I caught up on 9gag on my computer while eating breakfast. I was going to go geocaching, but my weather app was telling me that it was cold out, so I stayed in for a bit.

Worship team practice was at High Point at 1pm, and since Ruth had invited me to join in for Sunday, I headed down. It was fun! :) On the way back, I spotted some blackberry bushes along the path. Good thing I hadn't spotted them on my way to the church, otherwise I may not have even made it lol! Seriously, these are the sweetest, juiciest berries ever, MMMM!!!

Worship team practice went a little longer than expected, so we didn't end up making it to that bike tour thing. Which was fine, we hung out at the house. I pulled out my colouring stuff and finished the picture I had started on the way here.

Then dinner was ready, Ruth made salmon, roasted veggies, and cauliflower stuff that was supposed to resemble rice. It was soooooo good!!! :D

After dinner, the kids and I coloured some more before heading out to Butchart Gardens.

To my Winnipeg friends: for those of you who have visited the English Garden at Assiniboine Park is beautiful, it is boring compared to Butchart Gardens. Oh my gosh, the flowers here are soooo gorgeous!!! :D

There's the Sunken Garden...


And of course, gorgeous flowers! :)

I even managed to find a virtual cache! :D

Then, of course, there were the fireworks! Apparently their fireworks are world renown. And I believe it! These were AMAZING!!! :D It was like a story going on, and they were set and timed to music. SUPER cool!!!

But alas, all great days must come to an end. I'm actually pretty glad, cuz I'm WIPED by the end of the day LOL! Tomorrow is Sunday, so church at High Point. Super excited to see my friend LA, and meet her fiance! Then if all works out, we are going for lunch. Perhaps I'll suggest Spiral Cafe so I can sample their carrot cake (Alison suggested it!) Until then, goodnight! :)

Friday, July 18, 2014

Day 4

Another long but great day today! :D

I slept in about half an hour later than what I have been getting up at, but I did stay up a little bit later last night.

I had breakfast at the house today - oatmeal with banana, raisins, and honey - delish! :) I wasn't able to get a hold of Alex right away - for some reason my phone wasn't receiving his reply texts... So I headed down to the Songhees Walkway to hunt for some geocaches on my own :) I'm pretty sure I had found one, and knew which tree it was by, unfortunately there were a whole lot of spiderwebs (complete with spiders) between me and it. So that didn't happen.

It was a great view from the walkway though! :)

I also made it right down to the water while I was on the walkway. That was cool! I was finally able to splash my feet into the ocean :D

Then Alex Facebook messaged me, so I headed up to his place, locked my bike up, and we started hunting for the cache at Government house. That one is a puzzle one, you need to be able to answer clue questions by finding plaques around the grounds. We found another giant tree...

The grounds are HUGE!!! With, of course, a spectacular view!

We maybe got through a quarter of the grounds and only found one needed bench plaque before Alex was getting pretty hungry. So we gave up on that one and headed to Bubby's (where he works) for lunch. This place reminds me a lot of Stella's. The atmosphere, the food, the many gluten-free and vegetarian options, the willingness to substitute stuff in meals... I had the blackened albacore tuna wrap with a side walnut and goat cheese salad. Aaaaamazing!!! :D

We also had dessert - I had carrot cake. It was good, but it didn't stand out for me. Then Alex had to get ready for his shift, so I headed back up to his place to grab my bike, then I did some more geocaching downtown :) I discovered a letterbox cache, which is where you find the coordinates listed, then follow directions to find the hidden cache. Really cool! I ended up down at Fisherman's Wharf again, so at least I knew where I was, and remembered a few of the landmarks listed in the directions. And I got it! :D

Before heading back to the house, I figured I might as well check for any more caches along the way, and ended up finding a virtual one (you have to email in answers to listed questions), and tried for another, but couldn't find anything. There were a few people around for this one trying to find it, with no luck. Dang you, Little Brown Post! :(

So back to the house I went. I was pretty drained, and needed to get dinner going. It was a long ride home, I had to get off the bike and walk a few times, the hills were just too much lol. But, made it back, and got dinner going. I made stir-fry with quinoa, sooo yummy! But alas, I had forgotten to take a picture, sorry :( But it was pretty tasty! :D

After dinner, I rested a bit, organised my pictures from the day, then after the kids went to bed, Ruth and I headed downtown to check out the International Buskers Festival. There wasn't too much going on yet when we got there, but we found an acrobatic duo on one of the stages, and we stayed and watched them. I was pretty impressed! Plus the guy is from Winnipeg, yay! I was most impressed with the big ring he rolled around in. I don't remember what it was called, but that was my favourite stunt.

When they were done, I was pretty tired, so we headed back to the house. It is currently 10:17pm, and tonight will probably be the earliest I've gone to bed while here lol. I'm pretty wiped though. So worth it! Tomorrow's plans include a restful morning (as restful as it can be with two young kids lol), worship team practice (Ruth invited me to sing and play guitar, cool!), a bike tour, then Butchart Gardens for the evening. Until then, adieu!

Thursday, July 17, 2014

Day 3

Wow, today was full of many adventures! This morning I headed up the Galloping Goose Trail to meet up with Alex for breakfast. Oh my, was that ever a nice walk! I ended up being almost half an hour late for breakfast because I took so many pictures lol! The trail goes over the water too, it was really cool! This is halfway across:

We ate at Spoons Diner. There is an option there for the Prusa: "Whatever the kitchen feels like making for ya. Yes, you heard that right. Your only input is: Breakfast or Lunch, Sweet or Savory, Vegetarian or Not. Feelin' lucky? We'll flip you for it double or nothing. You win, it's on us. You lose, you pay double. If you have allergies or are one of those picky I-don't-like-anything-yellow-or-that's-touching-plants people you're not allowed to have this. There, I said it. No Prusa for you!"

Seriously awesome. Thought I was not feeling brave enough to try it today... But I had the huevos rancheros, it was super tasty! Similar to the Mexi breakfast at Stella's, but a bit different.

From Spoons, we walked down Government Street, passing through China town. I found a store (passed China town) that had a bunch of cowichan stuff, I bought a plaque thing of a Haida frog to hang on my wall :)

Continuing on our adventure down Government Street, we found Bastion Square. It was like a little pedestrian street that had little kiosks set up.

We also saw a 3D chalk artist! He had done a server, but because I had already seen the 2D view, it was hard for me to see the illusion. Maybe you, dear reader, can see it better than I can lol.

Down on Wharf Street, we saw a "coin operated" mime playing accordion, who would only play a song after money was put in the box in front. Very well done, it was really cool!

We were on our way down to Fisherman's Wharf. On the way, by Laurel Point Park, we found a tree in Charles Redfern Park that was MASSIVE!!!

We finally made it to Fisherman's Wharf today (yay!), and it was interesting! There were house boats there that were decorated really cool lol many of them had something funny about it. One had a little pot with grass, maybe 2"x3", with a little lawn chair, and a regular-sized sign saying, "Please stay off grass." Another had a little boat the house, with a cover on it that says, "In-laws suite." Another house had some driftwood art outside, my favourite one being this:

Along the dock, there was also a bucket of chalk, and a note that says, "Where are you from?" And many people have written where they're from, including myself :)

We had lunch at Barb's Fish & Chips. I wanted to eat there, because that's my mom's name, and I had already posted a picture on FB teasing her lol. But as it turns out, this place is fairly famous, having been on TV in Korea and China. It was also listed among The Top 10 Seafood Spots by the Sea in North America by Sunset Magazine. Cool! Alex and I shared a 2-piece Pacific halibut platter. We got the fish grilled in garlic butter, holy moly was it ever tasty!!! :D

After lunch, Alex had to start heading towards work, so we walked back to downtown and parted ways. On my way back to the house, I found some wild blackberries growing! They were soooo yummy! So I found some more and brought them back to share :)

I also had stopped along the way back to the house to take some pictures of some pretty purple flowers, and I ended up finding a butterfly that had stopped for a snack! It was pretty content with me taking pictures, and I got a couple good ones :)

So I made it back, without really using Google Maps, that was a feel-good moment lol! By the time I leave on Monday, I'm going to know this city like the back of my hand! Peter and big bro got back not too long after me, and so while dinner was cooking (Ruth made a rosemary fig roast chicken, sooooo good!!!), Ruth and I and the kids went down to Beacon Hill Park to see the animals there. We were only there for about half an hour before they closed, but we got to watch the goat stampede before heading back for dinner, that was fun lol :)

After dinner, and after the kids had gone to bed, Ruth and I went up to check out UVic. Peter is trying to convince me that I'll be back here taking classes in a few years lol! I would actually, but the idea is only just being planted in my head, so we'll see where this goes... ;)

After UVic, we went up to Mount Douglas. Wow. Seriously, I have never seen such a beautiful sight than from up there. From the very top, there is a 360-degree view. Absolutely breathtaking.

While we were there, Ruth was telling me about geocaching. I've heard about it, but didn't know how it worked. So she showed me the app that she uses - which is c:geo - and we set out to find one. The first one we went for, we must've ended up on the wrong path, cuz we just found a dead-end with 200ft left to go. So we tried another, and we found it! :D Ruth left a Salvation Army kleenex pack, so that I was able to take an item in exchange as a souvenir.

We did get a bit turned around after finding the cache, and we got lost trying to make it back up the trails to the parking lot. I must say, I was pretty glad for the cell tower that was up there, it was our beacon back lol! As we were nearing the top, Ruth had seen on her app that there was another cache just 90ft away, but it was getting dark, which makes it hard. Plus there's cougars around there. So we came back to the house. And had popcorn for a bedtime snack lol.

A very great ending to a very awesome day :) Tomorrow I'm hoping Alex will be interested in doing some geocaching with me, I am completely hooked on this! But whatever tomorrow brings, it's gonna be awesome!!! :D