Sunrise: 10:15 a.m.
Sunset: 2:44 p.m.
Well, here we are on Sunday and getting ready to head back to work tomorrow morning. Where did the time go?
My holiday was wonderful; I flew into Edmonton on Thursday night, the 19th and Friday was spent frantically shopping and getting appointments taken care of. And, it would appear I got taken while I was out. I was sitting in my the car waiting for my parents to meet me when this young man rapped on my window. I rolled it down to find him standing there with big crocodile tears in his eyes and him looking all flustered. He gave me a story about how he'd been in a restaurant up the road waiting to catch the bus and someone had stolen his bags and jacket. He showed me his wallet, which had $100 in it, and said he didn't have enough money to catch the bus now to get home to BC. That a stranger had given him the sweater he had on for a coat and that he was a welder and made good money and would get it back to me after he got home. Now, had I not been so surprised by it all I would have asked him why his cards had gotten stolen and not his cash but I was flustered, he was big, and I was in a hurry. So, I gave him $50 to get him home and my business card and haven't heard from him since. Apparently, I got took but I kept thinking that if it had been one of my cousins in a pinch I would want someone to help them out so that's that. Ahh well. At least somewhere some probable con artist had a bit more of a Merry Christmas than he would have had otherwise. :o)
And so the next day my folks and I drove to Calgary to see my sister and brother-in-law and have an early Christmas with them. We had such a great time! I have to say it was perfect; we laughed, we ate, and we opened gifts. I was so happy to get a Kitchenaide mixer - I love to bake and have wanted one for years and now I have one! It's in storage until the summer which sort of sucks but it's nice to have it to look forward to when I head out for the summer.
Then on the 23rd we drove to Stettler to spend actual Christmas with my Aunt and her family and again, it was so nice. On the way there we stopped at the Red Deer greenhouse and they had the coolest ice sculptures there so I got a few pictures. The greenhouse was decorated to the nines with Christmas stuff including upside down Christmas trees and trees decorated with antlers if you can imagine! Heh heh I should start marketing the caribou antlers we find when we're out and about on the land. I could make a mint! :o)
Anyway, once we got to my aunts, we had a great time. We laughed, played cards, played games, ate and just relaxed. It was really cool to be in Stettler on the 23rd because they shut down mainstreet to vehicle traffic from 4-9 p.m. and set up 5 or 6 bonfires along the street to wander up to so you can warm yourself as you're shopping. And there was a horse drawn wagon that sauntered up and down the streets hauling tired shoppers from one end to the other. It was awesome! And Stettler is great as it has a lot of charming stores with really neat things for sale. I loved being there. And spending time with my mom's sister was so much fun. On Christmas Eve we had a homemade stocking competition where we broke off into teams and had to decorate a stocking from anything natural we could find outside. Good times!
Then on the 26th I headed back to Peace River with my folks and relaxed for the next day before Doyle came and got me and we headed to Grande Prairie to spend New Years there. It was nice to be settled for a few days and nice to hanging out in the country. It's a very peaceful place complete with horses, chickens, turkeys, and puppies! Doyle's dog had pups a few weeks earlier and I had a blast playing with them. So, I took it easy while there, baked (his oven has two temperatures - off and nuclear so I burned three batches of cookies!) and hung out in the hot tub. Loved it! And New Year's Eve was brought in with our friends Michelle and Irvine playing games and hanging out. Again, very good times.
And so January 1st I found myself on a plane back to Winnipeg from GP. There were delays due to the weather out East but everything went pretty smoothly. Except we were an hour late leaving GP which meant that West Jet had to hold the plane for me in Edm to catch my connection to Winnipeg. Nothing like walking onto a plane full of grim looking, possibly hung-over people who all know their flight has been delayed because of YOU. Heh heh, needless to say I was feeling a bit sheepish. And catching such a quick connection I just knew my luggage wouldn't find me at the other end and I was right. But, luckily it arrived sometime in the night and was there by the time I was back at the airport at 5:30 a.m. to catch my flight to Baker so all was good. And it was nice to have familiar faces on the plane ride up to Baker as Todd, Jenesta, and a couple other teachers were there and we all got caught up on what happened over everyone's holidays.
So yesterday I took down my Christmas decorations and just caught up on some rest. Today I have to do the grocery shopping and get going on my course that I've ordered from Athabasca University. It's an English course and has tonnes of reading involved in it so I need to get cracking. All in all I had a great trip but it's nice to get back and see Oliver and the gang. Thankfully everyone up here had a peaceful, relaxing Christmas despite the extremely cold weather they had up here. New Year's Eve it was -46 with a -59 windchill and while AB wasn't all that much warmer, I'm glad I missed out on the frosty weather up here.
Now, back to work and reality! Hi ho, hi ho.....