Sunday, June 17, 2012

Celebrations in Canada and Guinea

I returned to Canada for 12 days to join in wedding, anniversary and birthday celebrations.

Brad and Anette went to St. Lucia to celebrate their 5th anniversary and I drove to Vancouver to look after Obi for a few days and then enjoyed three days with Brad and Anette when they returned.
Obi was exhausted from being at Uptown Dawg for a week and playing with the rest of the dogs.  She spent three days just snoozing on my lap with occasional bouts of playtime.  She was wide awake by the time Brad and Anette got home.

She is one of the best behaved dogs I've ever come across.  Brad and Anette have done a great job of training her.
Brad and Anette have been fortunate to make friends wherever they go.  A co-worker of Brad's from BioWare, Greg Lidstone, recently moved to Vancouver to work at Capcom with Brad and invited me to dinner at the Boathouse Restaurant along with his family.  I've known Greg and his wife, Jill, through Facebook, and it was wonderful meeting them in person.
Ella is adorable and constantly comes out with quotable quotes!

Abby is the baby but manages to keep up with her big sister

Brad turns 30 on June 16th, but we celebrated it early while I was in Vancouver.  With the help of close to 50 friends and family, we made a Voice Quilt for Brad with unique, touching and comical birthday wishes.  We Skyped Roger so he could be included and Brad loved hearing from everyone.

With Anette's help, a surprise party for Brad was thrown with a dozen of their friends.  All were interesting, witty and talented and the evening was a big success.
An ode to Brad's work on Transformers 3

Brad's smile never faded
Brad's favorite cake is banana with chocolate icing. I searched high and low for a bakery that would make it and finally asked the chocolate shop, Rubens, if they would do a special order.  The owner agreed, and now they are considering adding it to their menu!

I then headed to Calgary and managed to miss the worst of the mudslide that halted traffic for 24 hours.

After a quick stop in Calgary I headed to Edmonton for our Goddaughter's wedding. Megan, was a beautiful bride who was determined to get married outside --- rain or shine!
Mark, Megan and Betty Belanger

My wish is Megan will always be as happy as she was in this moment
 The rain didn't hold off, but nothing could dampen everyone's spirits.

The wedding party were troopers and happily supported Megan and Colby

A slideshow at the reception captured the day's special moments
Back in Calgary, I went out for a fun lunch with my Godmother, and mutual friends.
left to right:  Auntie Elaine, Nan, me, Donna and Ileen
I arrived back in Idaho after driving 3298 kms on my own.  It is great to be back, and I am keeping busy walking most days with a couple of girlfriends, Sandra and Gail, and tutoring a lovely 12 year old girl at the Sandpoint Library each Wednesday. 

Sandra and her husband Larry invited me to a local dinner musical and we had a wonderful evening; it reminded me of the Rosebud theatre in Alberta.  This month's performance was the choral group singing songs with an American Dream theme.
My next ad hoc volunteer gig is one of the most unusual I've undertaken.  On June 24th, I will be on the Sunscreen Application Team at the Coeur d'Alene Ironman Triathlon!  Now THAT'S going to be different!  I checked online for available positions and figured I wouldn't have to be there at the crack of dawn, or stay until the last athlete staggers across the finish line.  I also wasn't keen on having a job where I had to hand out water to racing athletes in case I knocked one over and ended up on the 6 o'clock news as the person who ruined someone's race.  The question is...will they use spray sunscreen or lotion?

On the other side of the world, Roger was invited to attend a special VIP dinner complete with entertainment to celebrate reaching a milestone of 13,500 meters on the project.
You wouldn't know the dinner was taking place in the middle of the Guinea jungle!

Waiting for the start of the entertainment

Roger on top of the mountain
From here you can see 3 African countries: the Ivory Coast, Liberia and Guinea
Roger will be home in a few weeks and I can't wait.  Thank goodness for Skype and sharing an attitude with Roger that everything works out for the best, and we can make anything work.

"If you think positively,
Sound becomes music,
Movement becomes dance,
Smile becomes laughter,
Mind becomes meditation,
And life becomes a celebration."
~ Rashika Jain

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