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Family Trip to the Cottage

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One of the main reasons my parents came to visit when they did was to celebrate my sister’s Laurie’s birthday. So, after a while with us, we all headed to Laurie and Glen’s cottage to spend the weekend and hand over my parents. :)

This was our first time up at the cottage and after seeing it, it was clear why they love it there! The location was just beautiful located on a lake in the middle of the mountains. Unfortunately, the weather wasn’t perfect for most of our visit but that didn’t dampen our fun. Fortunately, the day we left the weather improved and we were able to go out on the boat for a while.

So off we went down to the water


First up was some water skiing. You can see some of the views as well.


Can you believe that’s little Daley?

After water skiing, we came back in to switch things up some we could do some tubing. While the rest of the folks did work, we snapped a few pictures.

Scott, getting ready to go tubing

Molly was in charge of making sure Dougie didn’t go for a swim.


Not too hard considering he didn’t want to be more than a foot away from her at any given time. She helped Connie get a bit more comfortable with this boat thing too.


Connie hanging out on the bow


Almost all of the girls hanging out in the boat


On our second round out, my mother took care of Connie.


Scott and Molly went tubing


And Dougie hung out with Auntie Lou


As you can see, the dark clouds started to roll in again and we got in just as it was starting to rain. What a fantastic fun trip though!

Lake Louise

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And we’re off to the mountains again. Mom and Dad have never been to Lake Louise and that seemed like a shame. So, we took a day trip out there so they could see how spectacular it was in person. We started with a stop at Lake Louise.


It was a beautiful day and a great day to visit.


From Lake Louise, we headed over to Moraine Lake. I’ve learned that is the correct order to see these two areas. Mom and Dad agreed.


We didn’t have a lot of time at Moraine Lake but Mom got a few good pictures while Dad wandered around checking the prices of renting a canoe. The kids and I waited.


We were back in the car and headed back in time for the kids to catch a little nap. It was a long trip but we were all glad that we took a bit of time to go out there for the day.

Hoodoos with Grandma and Grandpa

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We continue to tour Grandma and Grandpa around Alberta. Today, we took them to see the hoodoos.


Connie was a lot more into the experience this time.


My parents really enjoyed the experience. It is definitely different than anything in Mississauga!


From the hoodoos, we went into Drumheller. The last time we came out as a family, we wanted to go to the museum there but we ran out of time. Fortunately, this time, we made the time. We expected that Dougie would love it. They have lots of dinosaurs and we thought he would be thrilled. We were wrong. Very very wrong.


You can see the fear. This trip started the mantra of “but it’s not going to eat Dougie.”

Overall, it was a fun day trip but it will be a while before we go back to the museum.

Troll Falls Hike

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My parents came out for a visit. We were very excited to show them the Alberta that we are starting to love so we took them out to Kananaskis for a small hike. Troll Falls is a lovely short hike without too much elevation gain so we figured it would be good for everyone. The scenery is quite nice too so it made for a nice day.


You don’t stay on this path for long before you head off into the woods and on a bit rougher path. That mountain ahead is a ski hill called Nakiska.


Dougie walked quite a bit of this himself. We’ve learned that if we give him a stick to hold, he’s happy to walk on his own for quite a while. It didn’t take too long for us to make it to the falls. There was another family there having a picnic so we got them to take our picture.


Mom and I hiked a bit up the falls so I could show her why it was called Troll Falls.


Look, a troll!

We headed back to the car and went into Canmore for lunch. Then, since we were so close, we decided to take my parents up to see some nice mountain views. This location also happens to be the site of our Mountain nemesis, Ha Ling Peak (more on that another time). There is a spectacular lake at the bottom of the mountain where we stopped for a few pictures.


Daddy and Dougie stopped to skip a few stones.


It was a great day in one of our favourite parts of Alberta.

Helping Out

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Dougie is such a big boy! He loves to help with various Connie things. Most recently, he’s decided he’d like to help feed her…. long time readers will know what an excellent eater Dougie is – so clearly, he was the perfect choice. ;)

First, we get some food on the spoon

Open wide, Connie. Like this…

Uh, I don’t think so

As you can tell, this is not the neatest method of getting food into Connie. She will frequently take a bite, though Dougie tends to overfill the spoon, and most of it gets all over her face. Dougie really likes to help though!

Our Day at the Stampede

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After all our fun at the parade, we were inspired to take the kids down to the Stampede itself to check it out. We took the train down so we wouldn’t have to deal with trying to find parking. That started the day off perfectly for Dougie, in fact, the train may have been his favourite part.

We arrived just in time to see a piano demonstration. Dougie was in awe! Once they finished, they allowed the kids to get on the piano.


As you walked across the kids, the piano would play notes. I think Dougie would have just stayed here all day if we had let him.


Of course, that was before he knew there was a display of various military equipment. Dougie asked to go on the boat twice. The navy person who was supervising it even let him wear his hat.


As we got closer to the kids area, we saw a jumping area that I thought Dougie would really like. They put bungee cords on the kids and then would let them jump and turn. Unfortunately, Dougie wasn’t heavy enough to try it. That was okay by him because he decided he wanted to go on the go carts more anyway. I thought he was too young but they assured me it would be fine.


Unfortunately, Dougie couldn’t get the idea of holding the trigger to make it go or turning the wheel to steer. This nice guy actually held the trigger and steered for him.


It was a big thrill for Dougie!


Finally, we got to the kids area and tried out some of the rides.





Connie didn’t do a whole lot there. She was too small for most of the rides. She was quite happy to sit in her stroller and watch the people though.


It was a fun day! We were lucky to get some really great weather for it as well.


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It’s Stampeded time in Calgary and that means the entire city channels their inner cowboy and celebrates living in the West. We decided that, as new Calgarians, it was our obligation to attend the parade with the kids. Scott had the day off work (yes, parade day is a holiday) so we headed downtown.

I was fortunate enough to be able to buy tickets for the bleachers so we didn’t need to get downtown too early though I didn’t realize that they were at the end of the parade route which meant an extra 45 minutes of waiting for the parade to start. I’ll know better next year. There were lots of folks that came through to entertain the waiting masses though so at least we weren’t staring at an empty street the whole time.

Connie in her best cowboy outfit

She is just mastering clapping so she took every opportunity to give it a try.

The kids were so excited to be there

Finally, the parade started. The grand marshals were Jet and Cord from the Amazing Race. These guys were, by far, my favourite Amazing Race team ever – so it was pretty exciting to see them.



Wow, an entire float dedicated to me? What an honour. :)


After a while, this came along.


I thought this was just brilliant! They decorated street cleaning truck and then sent it down the road to clean up after anything the horses may have left. Dougie did not like this. I think it may have been the noise but he shrieked every time they came down the street. In an hour and a half parade, that was a lot more often than we were happy about.

Look, there’s another one.


Hmm, he’s a little out of place here in Calgary, in the summer

Connie just took the whole thing in.


Nothing really scared her once the people stopped yelling “Ya hoo” as she was trying to nap.

Overall, we had a great time! We’d go again but we’d be sure to get seats closer to the start of the parade route.

Now We’re Cookin’

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We continue to struggle with what sorts of foods Dougie will eat. We decided that perhaps he would be more interested in eating if he helped to prepare the food. We had noticed he was more likely to sample something during the cooking process than when it was just on his plate. So, we enlisted him to help with the latest meal.



This particular meal is Jamie Oliver’s Sizzling beef with scallions and black bean sauce. Dougie loved helping toss the meat and adding things to the bowl. Since it was raw meat, he couldn’t really taste it as we went along though. When it came time to eat, he didn’t want to eat it at all.

Guess we’re back to the drawing board for ideas – but at least he learned some cooking skills.

Getting Bigger Every Day

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Connie continues to grow. More importantly, she continues to get stronger. She pulls up all the time now. She loves to stand.


She has definitely perfected sitting.



The one thing that hasn’t changed is that her brother loves her. He still constantly asks to “hold the Connie.” Since she’s a bit more stable, it’s gotten easier for him.

We swear she isn’t as big as this picture makes her appear

Jasper Road Trip – Day 3 & return

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Our final full day in Jasper started with a trip to Maligne Lake. We had tickets for a boat trip out to Spirit Island. On the way there, we had an elk run right past our car. Then, when we arrived, we saw this:


It’s like they were waiting to greet us.

The lake itself is beautiful. We were lucky to get on board early enough to get a window seat so we could get some nice pictures on the way out.


When we reached Spirit Island, we docked the boat and everyone got off to get some pictures.

The Island

Scott and the kids with the island

On the way back, we stopped at Medicine Lake. This place isn’t really that interesting in the summer except to know that a few months earlier, there was almost no water in this lake. By October, it will again be just a small stream.

IMG_4304 - cache

As the day warmed up, we headed down to Maligne Canyon. It was beautiful though very crowded. We took a stroll down quite a ways to enjoy the view.


Connie had been wearing a hat but she removed it shortly into the trip. Someone found it and hung it on a pole near where we entered the canyon. We were very glad to get it back and really appreciated the kindness of whoever found it.


We still had a while to kill before dinner so we opted to head to Pyramid Mountain to have a look. There is a little island near the viewing area. It wasn’t too crowded but there were enough people around to get someone to take our picture.


Before we headed back to town for dinner, we stopped to play a bit.


We headed out reasonably early the next morning. Our only disappointment about the trip was that we hadn’t seen a single bear. We weren’t too far out of Jasper when we saw this:


Our trip was complete. We’ll definitely head back to Jasper again as there were a lot of things we didn’t get time to do but this is by far one of my favourite vacations.

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