Monday, August 23, 2010

So full of memories today

There are some days that just don't "go by" is one of them.  August 23, 1993 changed my life forever.
I saw my sister and her finance in my apartment in Winnipeg.  I lent her a picture frame to use at the guestbook table and warned her "be careful with that, I got that from someone special " (her) and gave her a hug and actually said "I love you". (not so common for us to say that)
They walked away and that is my last memory of her.  She was killed when a truck ran a stop sign and ran into their car travelling highway speed.  She survived a few hours, but there was nothing the Doctors could do.
I woke up in the wee hours of the morning to my Dad on my apartment intercom "jo, it's your Dad"...I lost my feet for a minute.  I thought Crystal (my sis in law) had lost the baby (she was due any day) but knew it had to be bad if my parents were at my house in the middle of the night.
Shock kicked in and I picked out a dark dress for the funeral that would come.
Life would never be the same and the rest of that year was a blur.

I am thankful for friends and family that understood and were just there.
I am thankful for many good memories of sisterhood.
I am thankful to be able to experience some of those sisterhood moments through watching my three girls.

Seize the day.  Don't forget to tell those you do love that YOU LOVE least once in awhile, those words may be your last to them.  No regrets.
Troy, Tina Mae, Jolene Imbery

Tina's grade 12, Jo's grade 10, in sweaters Grandma Unger knit us.
We both really enjoyed that year being at MCI together...lots of sneaking over to the other sister's dorm room for sleepovers!  I remember her doing my makeup in the bathroom and puffing my hair up so we would look more alike....ha ha!
Tina's Columbia Bible College Photo from 1992?  Tina and Jo at Grandparents.

Days like today I wish I had my photo albums instead of them being in storage three provinces away.

So today, as with each anniversary, I will send a card to someone I love to let them know it.  I think it's a good tradition.  Love is never wasted, it only grows the more you give it away.

Saturday, August 21, 2010

Partnering with God in a bountiful harvest!

This summer my wonderful hubby (with a little help from me) shovelled about 35 truck loads of extremely wet 6 year old cow manure into a prepared raised bed garden ~ all for ME!

Preparing the ground, removing sod, so that hopefully no grass grows up and also more moisture can come up and down through the dirt.

Our little dog was after a Marmot...he almost dug to China!

The filling begins after the logs were placed around.

Can you see the beads of sweat?  My hubby tilled the whole thing with a tiller we found at the "Share Shed"
It was so moist, it was tough work.
Looked like a swimming pool of dirt...very deep and lush!

Girls removing rocks...they were more than happy to help when the quad was around!
At first I wasn't sure how much would grow as it was the middle of June when it all got planted...but WOW...God blessed with abundance!

Summer savory, herbs, onions...
The calendula flowers I thought were almost dead...definately are thriving.  I've picked and dried a big ziploc bag full already.  Trying my hand at making some lotion later on.

Sugar snap peas...yum yum
My very own Cabbage Patch kid! 
Now that is one big cauliflower!  Made some soup today, super yummy and froze the rest of it.
Picked about 1/4 of the row of Summer Savory, bunched it up to hang and dry.

I am wondering how I'm going to "do up" all this wonderful produce as my freezer is small and almost full already!  God is so good to grow this all for me!

Friday, August 06, 2010

Thiessen Travelling Times

The Low down on how we do our travelling ~ the Thiessen way!

With most travel, the main expense is fuelling our van for the trip...I cashed in some Airmiles for Shell gas certificates $180 worth, let's see how we did.
Grand total from 100 Mile House, to Calgary and Waterton, back to Calgary and up to 100 Mile House
$232.09 with 3/4 of a tank.  $232.09-$180 in certificates makes $52.09 out of pocket.
I had saved up $120 from homeschool funding for the activity parks, and another $80 from selling some baking and some Mary Kay.

Stopped in Kamloops to hit the Thrift Stores and have a little picnic.  Went to a local Superstore/Extra Foods and picked up $44.19 of groceries and used $40 in points from our PC Mastercard program.  Total was $4.19!  Feeding the marmots some of our lettuce was free entertainment.

Bought some great camping dishes (though they charged us double, it was still cheap and went to the Salvation Army) Total $6.95 for a back scratcher for Ruth and these cute dishes!

Next expense would be lodging for one night at Crazy Creek (Noah's Ark was full and small and crowded) $22.40 for us to camp the night and get rained out.

Having cereal in the dark was great fun!

Being rained out lead to an unexpected expense of eating breakfast at a local truck stop ~
$54.19 later and full tummies.

Headed to the ENCHANTED FOREST and paid the $47 to get in.  Worth it for the nostalgia and fun in the drizzling rain.  Fed the ducks for another 50 cents, Mei's favourite part when they ate out of her hand.

Stopped at one of our favourite places on earth (that we have seen) called FIN CREEK and had a quick picnic, wrote our names in the clay and skipped rocks...

Gregg thought I wrote "thiessen YO"

Stayed night with some great relatives, left some chocolate chips and icing sugar there, so that kinda counts as lodging expense?  $15 approx.

Bought water for drinking $3.

Off to Waterton National Park (Peace Park with US/Canada) and paid the 4 day pass of $58.80 for entry.  Went to the Ole' Lick 'n' Nibble Ice cream parlour for Foothills creamery ice cream $15.

Paid $84 for our family to camp and eat for the long weekend ~ costs were divided up and wow!  We had purchased $100 of fruit on the way up for it and were reimbursed and had a great time.  Came home somehow with the leftover Smore food ~ graham wafers, marshmallows and chocolate.

Back to Calgary to Gregg's parents place, free lodging in the basement.  Spread the girls out on the floor and enjoy!

Heritage Village in Calgary was the next big stop ~ really wish we would've gone here more last year because a family year pass is almost the same as what we paid for one visit.  We had 2- 50% off coupons and paid $98 for unlimited rides too.

Bought baby cones for the girls and some candy sticks $3.50.

Travelling home now, stopped in Salmon Arm to buy fruit at Pedro's Fruit Stand.  Spent $125.41 for 2 boxes of peaches and 1 box of cherries plus some eating fruit like banana's, nectarines and plums.
Discovered they also had Foothills Creamery Ice Cream...oh my, the big debate!
History here:  We found a winning lottery ticket worth $10 in a truck we bought and resold.  I cashed it in Calgary and let the girls decide what they wanted to do with their $2 share.  MAC DONALD's was calling by Salmon Arm.  Ok, so we sped over to MacD's and 4 of us were having a cheap burger and Ruth was waiting for icecream.  Spent $10.25 at MacD's and we all got a burger and 1 order of fries to share.  STILL, Ice cream was calling.  Searched the van for loose change...AH HA!  Girls shared 2 ice cream cones, then Daddy tasted Kate's and so we shared a cone.  The kiddy cone was a 2 scooper for $2!  So $6 later, we were happy and on our way again!

Tradition is that you wave until you can no longer see those that are departing.  L added his "BYE" to that as well, I think the whole neighbourhood knew we were leaving :)

Purchased some bulk food on the way home to stock up our bare pantry at home, but that doesn't count as a travelling expense, so I won't include it.  Really nice to be able to get some cheaper groceries than at home where a lot of things are priced double.  yikes.

SO, there you have it!  Thiessen Travelling Times on a budget and lots of fun!
Total cost of trip   $666.87.  Minus fuel gift certificates, saved up money, lottery ticket $370
Total holiday cost out of pocket $296.87  ~  WOW.