Category Archives: Pals

Yurt Sweet Yurt (Adventures in Jasper)

When I last left off we were leaving Revelstoke, BC and headed to Jasper, Alberta! Jasper is similar to Banff, but smaller, more rustic and less busy and touristy. Probably because it’s a bit of a hike. It was about a five and a half hour drive from where we were in Revelstoke, and three and a half hours north of Banff (you basically have to pass Banff if you are coming from either Revelstoke or Calgary directions). Jasper is so, so worth the drive though. It is beautiful, and you have to take the Icefields Parkway, which has the most stunning views I’ve ever seen while driving (and that is saying a lot because our entire road trip had stunning views). I had only been to Jasper once before, when I was about 10, but I remembered the beauty of it.

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We made a few pit stops because how can you not?! Once again the pictures do nothing justice. Absolutely nothing.

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Okay that one maybe you can get an idea of how beautiful it is to drive through. It is breathtaking, the entire way.

The icefields that the parkway was named for…

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That is the Athabasca Glacier that leads to the Columbia Icefield. You can do a tour on an Ice Explorer that will take you up to theglacier and you can get out and walk around on the ice and stuff. One day! I definitely want to come back here with Evan and do more hiking – there is SO MUCH to do. There are so many smaller mountain lakes all around Jasper that you can just drive to and hike around (I remember doing this when I was younger with my family). But by the time we arrived it was the early evening and we were exhausted from driving all day so we really only had one full day there.

The town of Jasper is cuuuuute.

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Just the cutest little mountain town. Actually the entire town is located inside Jasper National Park, just like in Banff. We were staying just outside of town in the Whistlers campground of Jasper National Park, two nights in this sweet yurt!

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I highly, highly recommend the yurt (actually it’s called an oTENTik officially). I’m so glad we weren’t actually camping here – the temperature had dropped even further to high of about 8 degrees C. On Thursday and Friday mornings it was only 1 degree! I brought a lot of layers and I was prepared for it to be chilly, but I was not prepared for winter. Luckily, our yurt was heated. Not full heat but enough to take the chill off and it was pretty comfortable in there. The inside was pretty awesome.

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Three beds that each slept two, and a little table and chairs for chill time.

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We got subway for dinner as you can see. All we did Wednesday night was eat our subway dinner, locate a shower (it had been a while), and go to bed. We didn’t even have a campfire.

In the morning we got up bright and early and got started on our adventuring. We went out for breakfast at an Italian restaurant in town, and afterwards we explored the downtown a bit.

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I don’t usually enjoy shopping, but the exception is shopping in small towns because I like to explore all the kitschy shops and look at all the cute touristy things.

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I especially love touristy shopping in little Canadian towns because they have all the quintessential Canadian things – lots of bears, lots of moose, and lots of beavers. And usually Mounties.

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I guess that’s really what we’re all about.

After a couple hours in town we dropped Yamina off at the yurt (her hip was in a lot of pain from all the driving, she had an old snowboarding injury that acted up so unfortunately she had to skip out on a lot of our adventures) and Lisa, Sherrie and I headed to Athabasca Falls for a little hiking action.

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It was absolutely beautiful, even if it was rainy and foggy and we could barely see the mountains.

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I googled it and this is normally what that looks like.

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So, Mother Nature hated us but what can you do? We had a limited time so we made the best of the situation.

 

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And it was still real pretty!

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Much rushing.

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I loved all the limestone!

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Athabasca Falls are known for their strength more than their height, because of the crazy amount of water that comes rushing through there.

You walk down a path where the water used to come through, and it eventually leads to a beautiful river.

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That water is just crazy blue.

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Highly recommend checking out the falls if you go to Jasper. Hopefully you have nicer weather than we did!

After our rainy hike we were cold and wet so naturally we hit up the Miette hot springs!

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We went to the hot springs later in Banff also and I have to say, the Jasper ones are so much nicer. They’re larger – they have four pools, two hot and two cooler ones (so you can switch between if you are feeling ballsy, but it was cold out and we were not) – and the Jasper springs are not as rammed with people. Although, we did go to the Jasper hot springs on Thursday and the Banff ones on Saturday so that might have had something to do with it. But we really enjoyed. The view is gorgeous and it’s nice to just submerge yourself in hot water. There’s also a hike you can do on the mountain where the springs are located, but we were just in leisure mode. The drive there was a hike in itself, the road was SUPER windy through the mountains.

It was also like African Lion Safari: Canadian Edition. Like Canadian Bear Safari maybe. Animals everywhere! We saw an entire family of elk right by our campsite, so we got to watch them for a bit up close (up close from the car).

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It’s currently elk mating season so the rangers told us not to actually get too close to the elk or they may try to make sweet love to us (or charge at us, whatever). And we saw four giant male elk on the way to the hot springs, lying down on the side of the road.

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They’re pretty well camouflaged so I have circled them for you. We could see them pretty well from where we were standing and maaan their antlers are huge and crazy.

Then we drove a little further and saw a bunch of mountain goats just chilling on the side of the road.

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About a dozen of them. They were cute.

After the hot springs it was back to the yurt, sweet yurt. We had visitors coming! Our friends Emily and Corey happened to be doing a similar road trip and they were about a day behind us and also staying in Jasper Thursday night. Em and Cork were staying in a trailer in a different campground, no yurt for them, but they happened to drive by our campground on the way to theirs so of course we were all “COME OVER!!! YURT PARTY!!!” so they came and they brought their beautiful baby Marcus with them!

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Ahhh I just want to snuggle him. I can’t imagine driving for that long (or staying in a trailer for that matter) with a baby, but they said he was just being a little dream and was liking the traveling. I think he was happy to be out of the car and reunited with his aunties.

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I love his little Canada mitts.

We were talking about how crazy it was that we all happened to be in Jasper at the same time, clear across the country from where we live – a good few days drive or four hour plane ride, and in the middle of nowhere. Seeing them felt like being home, and after almost a week on the road I was feeling a little homesick. It was quite the party.

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Sherrie and Corey like to pretend they’re a happy couple together. From the above photo I’m thinking Emily doesn’t mind at all.

We made burgers over the fire and hung out with Em and Cork until it was time for them to leave and locate their trailer. We had a good fire that night and the next morning we headed to Banff, the last leg of our adventure!

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Revelstoke Dream Camping

Stilllll recapping my trip out west.

On Wednesday (after Labour Day) we got up bright and early, said goodbye to my family and our original four got on the road to Revelstoke. It’s about a two and a half hour drive (all through the beautiful mountains) but we made a pit stop at the Enchanted Forest between Salmon Arm and Revelstoke. If you’re in the area I’d definitely recommend checking it out. Admission is cheap and it’s a beautiful spot to walk through. I wrote a post about it a couple years ago when I went with Evan, Eric and Kenya so you can check that out, ’cause we basically did the same thing. I can’t get enough of the hilarious fairy tale characters they have around.

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Sometimes I like to randomly text that picture to Evan.

The scenery is beaut!

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Even with the fog.

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And they have little rowboats that you can just borrow for free and take around.

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It was raining, which it pretty much did every day for our trip, but luckily it was always a light misty rain so we could be out in it without hating our lives. We didn’t experience any downpours, thankfully.

Our next stop was our campsite for the night! Our friend Jen who lives in Revelstoke (Lisa’s sister’s best friend) seriously hooked us up. There are a few sites down a remote road, and there’s no cell service or anything around so the directions are: once you get to a particular landmark reset your odometre to zero and then drive until you reach these exact kilometres and you’ll see a small path in the trees that you can take your car through to get down to the site. The site we were at for Canada Day last summer was in this area as well, which you may remember was the best campsite ever. Jen gave us about five options, all on the water, with very specific kilometres (for example 17.4) so we found them all pretty easily. We checked out three sites – the first site was too close to the road, the next site was taken, but the third one was a charm!

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It’s just down from where we were last time, probably the most beautiful stretch of shore I’ve ever seen. And the best part was that it’s on crown land so you can camp for free! A lot of the locals go here so our site was already set up with a fire pit and a picnic table, very handy.

We left Sherrie there alone to set up our stuff and start a fire (don’t worry, she volunteered for this), and then Lisa, Yamina and I headed into town to grab food, booze, and a pop up shelter we were borrowing from Jen. Jen and her boyfriend also gave us some of their firewood which was SO nice of them. While we were loading up the car with the wood, I looked behind me and saw a large black animal lumbering around in their neighbour’s yard. I first thought it was a dog, and then realized that dogs don’t really move like that… It was totally a bear. The bear ran around to the front of the yard so we went over to get a closer look.

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He was just chilling in the tree. After a few minutes he climbed up it and the owner lady came out of her house to see what was happening. We told her there was a bear in her tree and she was all “Oh he comes every day! Come over here to get a better look at him!” So, sure, okay. We did that.

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Photo credit to Lisa for that pic. I got a pretty sweet video of him.

Saw this guy hanging around in someone's yard in Revelstoke 🙀

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By that point a crowd was forming and this guy told us we should all  leave because the bear was scared and if he posed any sort of threat to residents they might have to shoot him. Fair enough. That would be awful so we heeded his advice and left immediately. We stopped by Jen’s for coffee the next morning and she told us that there has been a bear in her yard almost every day! They’ve had a cooler fall than usual so I guess the bears are stocking up for winter. Pretty crazy. Anyway, after the bear encounter we got our groceries and headed back to our amazing campsite. Sherrie was the best for getting the fire started!

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You’d think we would be worried about sleeping outside after we just saw a bear, but I think the beauty of our site distracted us. Just a bunch of pictures because I can not get over the view.

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The pictures DO NOT do it justice. We literally sat and stared at the mountains for hours.

We didn’t have a cooking stove so Sherrie looked up easy campfire meals and found an awesome idea. Meatball subs!

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We just grabbed some frozen meatballs, cooked them over the fire and then added some marinara sauce, with bagged Caesar salad on the side. Perfect! Those meatballs subs were seriously delicious, though I do think everything in general tastes better when you’re camping.

We did a little exploring around our site. There was a trail that led through a foresty area and then over to the water, and on it we found a second campfire spot.

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More gorgeous views from over there.

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We also found a cross…

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So that was a bit creepy and we tried not to think about it.

We made a pee spot along the water by that trail, and I have to tell you, it is the most beautiful spot I have ever peed.

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So peaceful and nice. I felt so thankful to be there.

For the rest of the night we just hung around the campfire listening to music, talking and having some drinks, including canned wine!

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Didn’t love it. I’ve had the red too and it sort of tasted like grape juice.

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What a perfect evening. It was cold but we were pretty cozy by our fire. I played my only German song on my iPod for Yamina, Hier Kommt Alex, which was really funny because she actually knew it and was singing along. After that we got her to play some of her music – it wasn’t bad but I’m glad we weren’t listening to that for six hours in the car, I can’t lie.

That night we all said that in the morning we were going to get up and go swimming first thing. When the morning actually came and it was 8 degrees everybody noped out of that. Except for me, because the water looked so beautiful and I can’t pass up a dream swimming situation. I just can’t! I knew it would make me feel all refreshed afterwards, so I went for it.

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Please note that is not my bare butt. That is an illusion.

It was COLD cold cold so I didn’t stay in very long. But I have no regrets.

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And that was the end of our Revelstoke dream camping trip. After that we packed up the car and headed off to our next stop: Jasper!

More on that later but for now I’ll just leave this gem here from the Enchanted Forest…

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And keep in mind the Enchanted Forest originally opened in 1971.

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Myra Canyon Trestle Trail Hike

Last Monday morning we woke up and had a big awesome breakfast made by Eric and Kenya.

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Bacon, sausage, scrambled egg bar, toast, croissants, PERFECT. It was about this time that Yamina told us she couldn’t believe how much we Canadians eat in the morning (and all times) and how we put cheese on EVERYTHING (true, but you can never have enough cheese!).

To pay us back for Evan and I taking them around to do all the things in Ontario, Eric, Kenya and Dixon planned a little hike for us on the Kettle Valley Runway in Myra Canyon. It is freakin’ beautiful and after being in the car for most of the day before I was excited to get outside and get my hike on.

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The whole gang!

The road leading there winds up through the mountains until you are high above the city – the view was spectacular. See Kelowna way in the distance?

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Yamina liked.

A active railway ran through here in the early 1900s, hugging the sides of the canyon, so the trail takes you all along the old railway route and over the trestles the train once took.

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It’s a pretty neat experience.

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In 2003 the Okanagan Park forest fires came through here and destroyed 12 of the trestles – you can still see the dead trees in the background of a lot of my pics. In the years following, the Myra Canyon Trestle Restoration Society rebuilt the trestles so people could hike and cycle on the trails.

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And climb the rocks…

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And walk through the railway tunnels, that was pretty cool.

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It’s an easy hike and would be an even better cycle – you can rent bikes right from the parking lot. To do the full trail it’s 12km, a good half day or so. I would estimate we did about half the distance in a few hours. We were nice and leisurely and just took in the views and abused my new selfie stick (I got one just for this trip and I’m pretty sure I left it in Lisa’s car so she better use it well).

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We did not have the best weather the entire time we were out west, but this was thankfully one of our nicest days. Though it did get a little chilly further into our walk and I was kicking myself for leaving my sweater in the car.

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We even saw a bear! Just a little black bear cub hanging out down the canyon a bit from us. Far enough away that it wasn’t scary, just exciting. We saw one closer up when we were in Revelstoke so more on that later…

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It was a really great hike and if you are in Kelowna and looking for something to do I would highly recommend it. They also have a lot of great wineries so I’ll be hitting those up next time!

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After our hike we dropped back by the house and picked up my mom for an early dinner at the Canadian Brewhouse. It’s a chain but it’s not in Ontario so we’ll say it’s somewhere new. I got the donair (it’s an east coast thing) and it was just delicious.

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We all actually really enjoyed our meals. For some reason we all toasted to Evan and said we wished he was there and talked about what a great person he is, so that was really nice. I missed him a lot on this trip.

After dinner we checked out Lake Okanagan.

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I was hoping to catch a glimpse of the Okopogo (Lake Okanagan’s monster, similar to the Loch Ness) but no such luck. And I wish it wasn’t so chilly ’cause you know there would have been swimming happening! But it was still beautiful. Eric and I got a nice family pic with our mommers!

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And one of the ladies.

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And one of the guys.

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Dixon’s brother Nate joined us for lunch and lake time, so it was nice to meet him. We asked him if he aspired to have long luscious locks like his brother but he said no. The night before I sent a picture of all of us in the yard to Evan and his response was just “but that HAIR” referring to Dixon, of course. It made us laugh hard.

After we walked around the lake for a bit we headed home and played this hilarious game where you put a disposable dental dam in your mouth and say a phrase that people have to guess.

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I would like to note that we had a bag of these things so we each had our own and weren’t sharing. It was actually really hard because you couldn’t make a lot of sounds – F, M, B, P in particular are really hard. But damn we looked good.

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Eric especially I think.

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My mom sat that one out but she was laughing quite heartily.

Kelowna is so cute and it was so nice to spend time with my mom, Eric, Kenya and Dixon. It was a highlight for sure. I love those guys and really wished they lived closer. Of course, it’s always a good excuse to visit!

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In the morning we left for Revelstoke, so our amazing camping adventures are up next.

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Kelowna Road Trippin’

Ahoy ahoy! I am back from my trip out west!

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It was nuts – I feel like we were everywhere. We did so many things and I have so much to update on. I wish I blogged some stuff during our adventure because now I have so much to say it feels daunting, but half the trip was camping with no internet (or cell signal sometimes), so it was not exactly ideal blogging conditions. I’ve never snapchatted so much in my life though, so if you were following that you’re probably pretty caught up.

I try to get out to Alberta/BC about once a year, since my mom and brother live in BC and my bestie Lisa lives in Calgary. Ideally I like to hit them all up in the same trip. This year was a bit different because I had my good friend Sherrie with me. Earlier this year Sherrie told me her friend Yamina would be visiting from Switzerland so she was thinking of taking her to explore the rocky mountains and asked if I would be interested in coming along. I barely hesitated in my yes. When I told Lisa about it she cleared her schedule for the week so she could come adventuring with us. YES! It worked out really well. We had originally planned on renting a car but with Lisa coming that wasn’t necessary, so that was an awesome bonus.

The plan was to fly to Calgary, stay a night at Lisa’s then drive to Kelowna in BC to my brother Eric’s house where he lives with his girlfriend Kenya and best friend Dixon. My mom was going to meet us there as well and we would all stay for two nights with them. Then our original foursome would drive back to Revelstoke, camp there for a night (near the dream site a bunch of us stayed in last year for Canada Day), then drive to Jasper, Alberta and stay in the sweet yurt we booked in the National Park for two nights. We were going to finish our trip with two nights in Banff with a few of our other friends before heading home, the last night being my bachelorette party! Here’s our route.

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A lot of driving but it’s the most beautiful scenery ever so it’s a road trip I think everyone needs to do at least once in their lives. 

We left early last Saturday, arriving at the airport around 5am for our 7am flight. Going through security in Toronto was probably the best security experience I’ve ever had. Sherrie was first and the man said to her “Are those natural?” and if you are a woman and you’ve heard this question before I’m sure know what we assumed he was asking about. Rude. But no, he meant her eyes! He just wanted to tell her how beautiful her eyes are. I was next and he looked at me and said “Wow, you have really beautiful eyes too! You all have beautiful eyes!” And then another guy told Yamina how much he loved her tattoos. Then when we were leaving there was a security lady inspecting a dollar bill so we asked what it was and she said it was a British pound and then handed it to us. So airport security complimented us and then gave us money. Pretty sweet deal.

After that pleasant experience we were off!

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We were pumped! Sherrie really does have beautiful eyes.

I find it so much easier to get up early for a trip than I do for work. When I’m traveling I like to leave as early as possible so I have the majority of the day once I arrive. It’s about a four hour flight and Calgary is two hours behind Ontario so we ended up getting in at 9am Calgary time, which was great. Lisa and her boyfriend Scott picked us up from the airport and the five of us went out for brunch. We had a big day ahead of us on Sunday so we spent the rest of Saturday just chilling out at Lisa’s place, drinking wine on her sunny balcony (Calgary was colder than here but in the sun it was really nice) and hanging with Lisa’s hunk of chunk Charlie.

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I have missed him. I was very careful not to lock him in my suitcase this time.

I’m so glad we got that leisure time before we left. It was good to catch up. Lisa and I ALWAYS drink more than we expect to the first night we get together. We plan to have one glass of wine and suddenly the entire bottle is gone. This was no exception, but we were exhausted and in bed sleeping by 9:30 so I felt pretty fantastic the next day.

We got up super early in the morning and packed up the car for our big adventure. We were planning on camping for a few nights so with our camping gear in addition to our luggage we had SO MUCH STUFF.  Scott tetris’d the crap out of it for us and somehow we were able to fit it all in the car.

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Who needs windows anyway. In hindsight a trailer might have been a good idea… Sherrie took over the car packing for the rest of the trip, which I was very happy to let her do.

So on Sunday we drove from Calgary to Kelowna to see Eric and friends. It is about a seven hour drive, and as you can see from the above map we did a lot of driving on our trip, but this was the longest haul in one day. I’m glad we got it over with early while we were still fresh, because if that seven hour drive was on the last day I would have wanted to kill myself. Even though it is the most beautiful drive I have ever experienced.

The entire way is just mountains and more mountains and some of the bluest lakes I’ve ever seen. I have driven that route by myself and had the best time ever. It was super foggy from Calgary through Canmore and Banff that morning and the mountains were quite misty, so the mountain visibility was definitely not what it usually is.

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But it was still beautiful, and the fog lifted a lot after we got to Revelstoke area.

We sang at the top of our lungs for pretty much the first six hours, all our favourite road trip songs. Poor Yamina. She said she enjoyed herself but her native language is Swiss German so listening to us yelling our English songs that she doesn’t know had to have gotten annoying after six hours. Can you imagine being in a car with a bunch of Swiss Germans listening to them blasting their music and yelling along to it? I can’t even.

After about six hours we were all done with the car, the last hour was getting painful. But we made it to beautiful Kelowna!

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And BC is an hour behind Alberta so we actually gained an hour. The gang was all there, so the four of us hung out with Eric, Kenya, Dixon and my mom for a bit before we all headed out for tacos. Best of all, they were surprise tacos! Sherrie had asked me a couple weeks ago out of sushi, Indian and tacos which I would go for. It was a tough decision but I don’t think I could ever pass up a good taco so that’s what I told her. She planned a special taco outing for me as part of my bachelorette trip, so that was really cute.

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Yamina had never eaten tacos before so she was pretty excited.

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We started with a few bowls of chips, salsa and guac for the table.

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And then got two platters of assorted tacos, with refried beans and Spanish rice on the side.

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I had four of those tacos and they were SO GOOD. Ah I want them again right now.

After the tacos the owner brought me some kind of tequila shot, also as a surprise for bachelorette things.

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I am not a fan of tequila shots usually but that one was actually quite tasty. It had a ton of sugar in the bottom, so that’ll do it.

I was so happy to have my mom there for a sort of bachelorette activity. She really enjoyed hanging out with all of us.

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After the taco fest it was back to Eric and friends’ for some games.

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We played beer pong on their custom made table (that is triple varnished, they were very proud of this).

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And also slap cup, which I had never played before. They were teaching us old dogs new tricks!

And then we played spoons, and then we set up our air mattresses in the living room for a slumber party and fell asleep watching Tangled.

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Which happened pretty early. Sitting in a car all day somehow makes you exhausted, I tell ya. So that is day one of epic road tripping, and it was pretty awesome. More adventures to come!

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The Annual Blackstock Derby

Friday night I hit up my small hometown’s annual fair and demolition derby. Ah, good ol’ Blackstock, Ontario, barely on the map. I actually consider Port Perry and Blackstock my dual hometowns, because Blackstock only consists of a couple general stores, a couple churches and an arena (its slogan is “it’s small but it’s paid for!”), but it’s where I went to both high school and elementary school and many of my friends lived in town so I spent a lot of time there. Port Perry is larger and the closest legit town, where we would go if we actually wanted to do something, so I think of it as home, too. But I technically grew up outside of both Blackstock and Port Perry, in Scugog Point, which is sort of in the middle of nowhere and consists of some houses, a forest and the lake. It didn’t even have a general store. I enjoy the city but I love the country and really miss it sometimes. At least I can go back to visit.

Anyway, not that anyone cares, so onto the derby. The fair usually has about four rides, a game or two, some events and a couple of food stalls. I noticed that it has really downsized this year — there were no rides or games, just a barn full of animals, some 4-H activities, a flower show thing, chainsaw carving (I am not kidding), camel rides and a few food stands. But you know the highlight is the derby! Here’s a video from last year:

Congrats to Mark!!! He got third with his little white Ford in this entertaining mess.

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I took all my videos on my Snapchat (happyorhungry) this year and I forgot to save them, so hopefully you caught the action live! One of my coworkers did and she said she felt like she was there with me.

Mark’s car from last year unfortunately did not live to see another derby, so this year he had a new sweet ride.

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Scar’s car! (for Scarlett, Dawn and Mark’s daughter)

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Cute.

I don’t think derby’s are really city things so I’d better explain…usually there are at least six cars in the ring at a time, and they all deliberately smash into one another until there is only one car still running. The winner!

The cars have all been gutted and all the glass has been removed for safety precautions. They usually modify with roll bars and like…fire things, I don’t know…as well.

Last year Mark came in third overall, so we all had high hopes for this year. We scored a seat up front to watch the action.

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We got to talk to the man of the hour before his heat started.

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He definitely looked the derby driver part.

Go 97!
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His car was holding up well but there was a big jerk in his heat who was totally after him. He would purposely seek him out to smash into him, several times he would come barreling over from the opposite side of the ring and just crash into Mark as hard as possible. It was really annoying to watch. He also had a confederate flag on his car so we didn’t like that. I really wanted to see him lose. In the end the jerk won the heat, after he took out Mark.

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Mark got second, which is not too shabby at all. His car took a serious beating and I could not believe it ran for as long as it did. It really held up. He should be proud. Derby royalty right here.

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Mark would actually advance to the finals! If he could get his car running again, which…

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did not look promising.

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People were actually crowded around taking pictures of it.

While Mark worked on the car the girls walked over to his parents house (conveniently located directly next to the fairgrounds) and had a drink with his mom, so that was cute. By the time we got back Mark had gotten the car running again and was thinking the finals might happen, and then it stalled again forever, so that was the end of that.

Bye 97.

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So then we went to the beer tent (not really a tent, just a fenced-in area) and that was a total elementary/high school reunion. I saw a kid I used to teach swimming lessons to when I was like 13 and he was about 4 or 5. My friend Melissa and I (and sometimes Lisa too if she was at the cottage) started our own swim club in our neighbourhood, offering lessons to all the local children for $2.

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We didn’t have any official swimming instructor credentials or anything, but we spent the entire summer in the lake anyway so we figured we might as well make some money. Parents actually paid us $2 a week to teach their child how to swim. Not a liability issue at all!

So I saw one of the kids and we had a reunion and he was like “That is so crazy! I can’t believe my parents paid you to teach me how to swim!” I pointed out that he didn’t drown and asked him if he was a good swimmer now, and he said he’s a GREAT swimmer now! There ya go.

It was a really fun night. The entire evening was a hilarious experience that made me feel like I was back in high school. Can’t wait til next year!

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Dock Days of Summer

AHOY! Sorry for the blog hiatus. Summer be BUSY. I mean, I cannae complain because I elect to be busy and it’s busy with fun things (I don’t even have kids so I’m sure many of you are side-eyeing my “busyness” because I’m basically just leisuring), but when I’m out in the evenings after work and doing stuff all weekend my blogging suffers. I miss it! There are so many things I’ve been wanting to talk about. Hopefully I can still catch up with everything.

The most exciting thing lately is my BFF Lisa was visiting from Calgary, which I already mentioned, and also my brother Eric from Kelowna was here for a week and a half. He came out with his girlfriend Kenya and their friend Dixon (I just consider Dixon my second brother now) and have been staying with Evan and I.

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They arrived on the Friday of the long weekend and they just left this past Sunday, so it was a whirlwind squeezing in all the fun times with them. Lest we be boring hosts. They sure showed Evan and I a good time a couple summers ago so we needed to repay the favour. Eric and Kenya visited me a few years ago but Dixon has never been to Ontario so we needed to show him that a time without mountains can still be a time!

They arrived at 11:30pm on the Friday so Lisa and I picked them up from the airport and headed straight to the cottage for the weekend. She had slept over Thursday night as I took her to the Lumineers for her birthday (AMAZING), and I took Friday off work so we could go shopping for my wedding dress. More on that later but things actually looked pretty good on the ol’ bod so that was a success! Evan went up to the cottage a bit earlier in the afternoon to prepare for our arrival. The rest of us didn’t get to the cottage until like 1:30 in the morning but it is tradition to grab a beer and walk down to the dock on arrival so that’s what we did. The stars up there are beautiful and we had a good time catching up. I’m so glad Lisa was here at the same time as them, last year she was leaving as Eric was arriving so they only saw each other for like 10 minutes at the airport.

Anyway, cottage.

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Making breakfast at the cottage and then doing all the dishes is not my favourite. Dinner is easier ’cause we do it on the barbecue and lunch is usually a random assortment of snacks, but for breakfast Evan and I find it’s usually better to just go out. So the six of us headed to Golden Beach Resort. Their Boathouse Cafe has delicious food so it’s a cottage staple for Evan and I.

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And another cottage tradition:

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After breakfast we went in the gift shop and could not resist buying these shirts…

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Usually when we match it is not on purpose, like this time was a total accident…

You know you're best friends when you meet up for the first time in 3 months and you happen to be wearing the same shirt.

But this time we couldn’t resist. We weren’t the only matching besties!

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Doesn’t Dixon have incredible hair? We all raved to him about it. I’m sad I never got to braid it.

We had some friends up on Saturday so they started arriving once we got back from b-fast. It was gorgeous outside so we spent nearly the entire day on the water. We busted out the inner tubes and the party raft and it was just a big floating fest.

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I love the cottage. Everyone took the SUP boards for a spin, even little Scarlett!

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I should note that she enjoys wearing bandaids, for fun not for her injuries.

For dinner we did pork and veggie skewers, chicken burgers, and corn on the barbecue. Well, the chefs did, I just watched.

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Evan also made a white bean dip from Eat, Shrink and Be Merry and he does this amazing potato salad with halved small potatoes, grainy mustard and a bunch of herbs (basil, etc.). It’s so good.

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Summer barbecues are the best. After dinner it was back to the lake.

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Mark and Dawn brought their boat (and made Evan super jealous, next year I think we are just going to have to suck it up and get a boat) so at dusk the boys went on a fishing trip.

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Apparently Eric and Dixon were the only ones who caught anything. Just sunfish though, nothing crazy.

 

Once the lads got back we had a bonfire and spent the rest of the evening killing ourselves laughing. It was so much fun and probably my favourite day of the entire summer so far.

Sunday was overcast for most of the day so we had a bit of a break from the sun. Everyone had left and it was just Evan, Eric, Kenya, Dixon and I, so my dad (aka Bobby) came over in the afternoon to spend time with us.

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Upon meeting Dixon he said “Are you a musician?” (the hair) except we thought he said “Are you a MAGICIAN?” which I wish actually happened because it would have been way more funny. Dixon, for the record, is neither a musician or a magician…as far as I know. My dad also wanted to show us his back stretches, so suddenly he was doing yoga on the floor. That was entertaining. He’s a good time that Bobby.

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Bobby stayed for dinner (burgers!) and once he left the rest of us had quiet reading time inside. We also watched Demolition Man with Sylvester Stallone, which was pretty hilarious, though I fell asleep so I can’t tell you if the ending was any good.

Monday was a holiday in Canada so we stayed at the cottage until the afternoon. It was another ridiculously beautiful day so a lot of lake time happened.

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It was the best weekend. When I asked Eric, Kenya and Dixon the highlight of their trip to Ontario they all said the cottage. I’m going to recap some of our other adventures but I guess it’s all downhill from here so don’t get too excited!

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