Monday, January 26, 2009

Trying out the Back Roads

We decided to take a quick drive this afternoon towards Fernie and Hosmer.

We first drove just past Fernie up to Mount Fernie Provincial Park. The road was winding and beautiful.

We ventured off a side road from the park and came to a very steep back road covered from top to bottom with ice. We made it half way up and then slid half way down again backwards.... talk about un-nerving! The tires just couldn't grab the road with it being pure ice.... even with 4x4 and skid-steering.

We tried a different road just above Hosmer. This was the view we saw looking down into the valley below.

This is the mountain we saw behind us in Hosmer.

Sitting above Hosmer.

Then we went down to the valley again and traveled to just outside Sparwood to a back road there. This road used to be part of the old highway.

The road was a rough one and very rutted due to all the different trucks and snowmobiles that traveled along it but very beautiful!

I even gave the ol' 4x4 a try!!

Todd made me get out and walk into the bush to take a few pictures! Darn it.... wet socks!

So far we love the Jeep!


Thursday, January 22, 2009

Pillow Fights, Birthday Presents & Mile Zero

So on Wednesday morning, after a rather restless night's sleep in Dawson Creek, the boys decided a pillow fight was a good idea!

When the pillow fight started to involve Mommy... it ended quite quickly after that!
The they decided to jump on the hotel beds... what a great game....

10 points for position.
10 points for height!
0 for landing!

Yup... and Todd had to give it a whirl too! He's so mature (hahaha)!

Once all the foolin' around was done and over with, we got headed over to the Jeep dealership to pick up Daddy's best birthday present EVER!

Here are the boys posing for the first official photo....

After getting all the license info and insurance stuff done, we went and sold my poor little baby to a used car lot in Dawson Creek. My poor little navy blue '99 Mazda Protege is no more. I confess... I cried! Todd thought I was loosing it! I did take some photos but I had accidently flipped the lens switch to manual mode without knowing it and the photos are all blurry.

Before leaving town, I wanted to make sure we got our photos taken at the Mile Zero marker of the Alaskan Highway.

Here's our little "poop monster". Just moments after this photo was taken, Spencer stunk us all out of the Jeep! It was so bad that he literally had to be striped down and re-dressed from head to toe... poop every where! Nothing like a true christening of our new vehicle!

Traveling highway 43 between Grande Prairie and Mayerthorpe.

And I did get to see a moose....

Does a brightly painted yellow orange sign count?

We're home safe and sound at home. A day of rest for us tomorrow with a trip to play group and then to the pool. It's good to be home!


A Quick Hello from Calgary

We have made it from Dawson Creek to Calgary last night. We decided to stay in Calgary last night so we caught a room at a hotel at the base of Calgary Olympic Park last night. You could see the ski jump just outside the hotel and up the hill.

Todd and I both have enjoyed driving the Jeep so far. The roads were clear and great to drive back on yesterday. It was snowing here in Calgary a little bit ago but it has cleared up a bit already.

We stopped to have the Jeep rust-proofed and boy let me tell ya... we won't be going back to that company again! We called for an appointment this morning and a quote for the services we wished to have done. We went to pay for it and it was almost DOUBLE the quote on the phone! What the heck???!! They had quoted us wrong on the phone so the guy dropped his price. We gathered up all of our stuff after the 1 hour and 15 minute wait for the rust proofing. I opened the front passenger side door and discovered that they had dripped rust proof solution on the side of the seat. I opened the back door behind my seat and the SAME THING on the rear seat! Needless to say I was livid!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I made them clean it immediately!! I'm still mad! The poor Jeep has been off the lot for only 24 hours and someone's got crap all on the seats!!!!!!

We're going to do some galavanting here in Calgary and then head home in daylight later this afternoon.

Spencer's been a pretty passenger. I think he's had enough of sitting down though. He was doing laps at the rust proofing place while we waited. I don't blame him.

Gotta run! Hope everyone's doing well!


Tuesday, January 20, 2009

We're at the Beginning of the Alaskan Highway Here!

We left bright and early this morning from home and were on the road just after 4am.

We drove to Coleman, about 20 mins from home to pick up a road to take us North and we got to the beginning of the road and it was a terrible road so I made Todd go a little further into the Pass (Crowsnest Pass) and pick up Hwy 22 to go North to Black Diamond instead.

Off we go! Away to Banff and Jasper for a mid trip stop!

Just as we arrived in Canmore the sun began to rise. The mountains were gorgeous around Canmore and Banff.

This is one of the tunnels on the TransCanada Highway near Banff. It allows the wildlife to cross over the road way. Spencer loved going under the "tungels"!

More photos from the TransCanada....

We decided to make one little side trip up to Lake Louise before proceeding on to Jasper. We drove a few kilometers up a winding mountain road....

At the top we stopped at the hotel at Lake Louise. They had this cool ice seat just outside the front doors so we all got out and had our picture taken sitting on it! The area was gearing up for an ice sculpture weekend.

We arrived at the beginning of the Icefield Parkway leading to Jasper and lo and behold.... the thing was a pure sheet of ICE!!! The sign at the beginning showed the road as being in POOR condition! NO KIDDING! We decided rather than risking a longer, slower and more dangerous ride but to turn around and travel the 100km back towards Calgary to catch a road leading North again! What a pain in the butt! The lady at the Jasper Provincial Park office should have told us that the highway was rated in poor condition when we entered the park!!! We did stop to get our money back for our park pass though.

So we ventured back to Hwy 22, the road we had orginially been on to travel North again.

As we got farther and farther North, we started to see signs for wildlife. Deer. And others.....

Can you tell what the photo below is of?

Well it was quick attempt to photograph a real live and wild moose. That small dark brown blur just above the snow line on the right side is his antler! So much for a moose photo! My very first live moose siting.

As the sun set, we got a beautiful cloudy winter sky as our scene. This was taken as we reached the road from Edmonton and traveled more West towards BC again.

We have arrived safely in Dawson Creek, BC at 8:00pm our time. We took a quick travel around the Jeep lot but the Jeep is no where in site so we think it's inside getting all "prettied" up for us tomorrow morning.

I know Todd is going to be thrilled to get his ultimate birthday present tomorrow! What a way to celebrate your 42nd birthday... getting the thing you have waited most of your life to get... a Jeep! I have a few birthday gifts for him too.... that I think he'll love!

Take care all! Wish us luck for good weather to travel home.


Monday, January 19, 2009

Visions of Home

I just thought I'd share some pictures of our home with you.

I took these today.

This is looking south down Highway 43, the road we live on towards the mountain at the end of Hwy 43. It had a little stream of cloud hanging on it I thought was pretty today.

This is looking almost across the road from where we live. The plume of smoke in the photo is from the coal processing plant across the road. I love the look of the frost on the pines!

This is looking south and down the mountain ridge that runs behind the house and behind the town of Sparwood.

I just love the mountain views we get!


Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Our New Baby

Yup... it's official. This is a picture of our new baby, a new 2008 Jeep Wrangler X Unlimited 4x4. It's in white, the last colour I think we both would have picked but other than that, it's perfect! We decided that since we needed a reliable family vehicle that would get us from place to place without a lot of restrictions, this was the vehicle for us. I mean when you can only travel maximum 40km/hr on the dirt roads around here, getting places we want to visit has been tough!

Todd's been searching and researching it for months and waiting for the rates to go down and a good deal to fall in our laps. Well, we finally found the exact Jeep he would have ordered in a small BC town called Dawson Creek.

Yup... way up there! It's about a 11-12 hour drive and we'll head up there sometime next week on Todd's days off to pick it up. We'll make a mini side trip through Jasper and Banff so we can see more of this beautiful province.


Saturday, January 10, 2009

A Few Photos from Ontario

Here are a few photos from our visit to Ontario.

This was New Year's Eve. The Eby family came to visit and little miss B was giving Spencer piggy back rides and he loved it!!!

Papa and Spencer together...

Visiting Great Grandma in Chatham...

We stopped in to visit Linda and "Bernie" (as Spencer has always called Brandy).

Linda showed us around the side of the building that used to be our side.

Here's the new bathroom with a window looking into the back yard. The bathroom sits where the kitchen used to be.

This is looking towards the old shop door. This will become the new kitchen in the apartment.

This is looking at the new front door. It's now in a nicely naturally lit living area. The doorway on the right leads to the 2nd bedroom and the master bedroom is behind that where Spencer's old bedroom was.

Spencer sporting his favourite pose on the couch in his new PJs from Auntie Linda!

On the plane somewhere over the Prairies.

We had a pretty good flight home. We were delayed slightly out of Toronto when we left as they had to de-ice the plane before take off. Spencer was awake the entire way home until 10 minutes from Calgary when he took his "power nap".

We arrived into Calgary at 10:30am and got our limo to our car. We drove to Canadian Tire where we picked up our new tire and Todd put it on in the parking lot.

Our drive home was uneventful. The roads were pretty clear and Crowsnest Pass was open. We arrived home at about 3:30pm our time.

It's good to be home!


Monday, January 5, 2009

Winding Down in Ontario

Well we are winding down our visit in Ontario before we leave on Wednesday morning from Toronto to fly to Calgary to go home.

Today we managed to pop in on a few people....
- We visited Spencer's Great Grandma and Todd's Grandma in Chatham.
- Then we visited Linda in Bothwell. Spencer got to see his "Aunt Inda" and "Bernie" (he can't say Brandie"). We also got to all the renos to the old house. I'll post some photos when we get home for everyone.
- We attempted to see Debbie, Kathleen or Maria at the Bothwell post office with no success,
- We snuck in a surprise visit to Laura in Wallaceburg and finally...
- Came home to have dinner and a short visit with Teresa.

Overall, I think we did well with seeing all the people we wanted to over our 13 day stay in Ontario. We are going to stay in Toronto, close to the airport, so we will only have a short trip to make in the morning for our early morning flight.

Todd and I are going to take one last trip to Lake Erie to see the lake before we go. It's the one thing I think we both miss the most.... the water and the beaches. I know once Spring and Summer come, we will investigate more the lakes and ponds around home. Apparent;y, there is a very pretty lake around Elko (below Fernie) that has a pretty & clean beach and warmer water to swim. Can't wait to find that little spot!

Hope your 2009 has started out well!

Wishing everyone an amazing 2009 from the 3 of us!


Friday, January 2, 2009

Time Flies....

Time sure flies when you're having fun!

We have managed to do almost everything we want while we've been in Ontario. Tomorrow I hope to spend some time gabbin' with the gals at the Bug for the afternoon and I'm not sure what Todd and Spencer are going to do. Maybe they'll go to Toronto and look at Jeeps.

Todd and I got a "date night out" (dinner and a movie) courtesy of my little sis and her man for Christmas. I'd have to say the BEST Christmas gift ever!!! We're going to go out on our "date" on Sunday evening. I'm extremely looking forward to it!

We were hoping to get a hld of Linda to come for a visit back to Bothwell but have had no success in getting an answer yet. Hopefully tomorrow. I know Spencer really wants to see his Aunt Linda and "Bernie" as he calls poor fuzzy Brandie.

Only a few days left and they are all flying by so quickly. Hoping to see Amanda for one last time before we go home too.

Cross your fingers for good flying weather on Wednesday! (and NO delays either!!!!)

Hope your New Year's Eve was a good one! Todd was the first in bed, even before Spencer! After Spencer,cam me at 12:02am. Such a party girl aren't I?

Have a great new year everyone!