Tuesday, 21 July 2015

Goat Creek

Greg decided that we should do Goat Creek from Canmore to Banff by bike.  Unlike Legacy Trail, it was easier to do this ride from Canmore to Banff then the other way around.  Although when we started I was like hell no, I am not doing this but I did and I loved it.  Well most of it..
The start of Goat Creek is at the Spray Lakes parking lot in Canmore.  We have been snowshoeing out this way previously.  Lots of popular hikes start from here.
Getting ready to go.  It’s really gravely and has a lot of hills.  It was super fun for me.  Them not so much.
Lots of great scenery along the way
Our lunch spot at Goat Creek.  It was so pretty.  The hill coming into this was insane.  I thought it was never gonna end but it finally did.
A rare photo of the three of us.  It was Greg’s idea to take it – that doesn’t happen often but I sure do appreciate it.  I thought my beloved pink lululemon leggings were ruined with mud stains because there were some muddy spots and I managed to almost fall into a few and there were splashes everywhere.  Thankfully all it took was once wash and they came clean.  Greg did promise to buy me a new pair of leggings if they didn’t.  He is more happier then me that they came clean haha.
This is where Goat Creek ends which isn’t too bad.  I finished 90 minutes before Greg and the girls did so I did a lot of walking around waiting for them to finish.  
Since Brad wasn’t with us this time to do a vehicle switch, Greg figured he would leave us in Banff to have ice cream and he would ride back to Canmore.  It turns out, the bike ride was way more work then he thought with the two girls so he decided to take a bus back to Canmore then take a cab to the parking lot where our car was parked.  However, the taxi would only take him to the Canmore Nordic Center so he hitchhiked back to the parking lot.  Two guys stopped right away and they took him to the parking lot as that was where they were going so it all worked out.  Meanwhile, the girls and I had ice cream at the cow store and then bought some activity books at Indigo and crayons at Rexall and hung out at the food court at the Banff Mall.  My phone ran out of battery so I had no idea that Greg was hitchhiking/walking back to the car.  I am grateful that someone picked him up or I would have been waiting for another hour or more at the park bench that we were to meet at around 530pm.
So despite our parking/car hick up, I really enjoyed doing Goat Creek.  If it was just Greg and I doing it or the kids were much older, we would do Goat Creek from Canmore to Banff and then Legacy Trail from Banff back to Canmore.  Both are great bike trails with some amazing scenic views.

Monday, 20 July 2015

Johnston Canyon Campground

We spend our Canada Day week camping at the Johnston Canyon campground.  It’s one of the last campgrounds that we hadn’t stayed at before leaving the last one to be Two Jack Lake which books up super fast.  This one was probably my most favourite of the reservable campsites ever.  It was woodsy, it had good loops for biking and we met some great families to hang out with.  Greg usually avoids reservable sites but for long weekends/holidays you really have to reserve.  With the first come, first serve sites you don’t get a lot of families to camp with so this was exciting for us.
Getting our campsite set up.  Look how great it is.
It was so beautiful – even the weather was the best I have ever had in Banff.  Not a bad view on my morning run.
Penelope and her new bff blowing bubbles.  The family next to us was the perfect fit for us. 
Finley and her new bff.  These two were instant best friends.  It’s too bad they live in Kelowna but the  two of them were planning our next camping trip together next summer haha
Bubble loving…..so much fun was had at the campsite
Great campfires.  Our neighbour did all the campfires for our duration there which made Greg very happy.  He hates starting fires.  Probably because he’s not always good at it haha
At the Interpretive Program it was all about wolves and they had a game show called The Wolves Are Right.  Greg was a contestant and he ended up winning it all.  Pride only as there were no prizes.
I highly recommend Johnson Canyon campground if you are into camping.  It has all services but power – kitchen sink, bathrooms and showers.  The sites are great and it’s great for kids.  And it has interpretive programs too.  A really great site.

Sunday, 19 July 2015

Canada Day!

Canada Day saw us heading to Banff for some mostly weekday camping.  With it being on a wednesday, we headed out that morning and came home on Saturday so we could have a recovery day before Greg headed back to work.
The girls decked out in their Canada gear before we hit up all the festivities in Banff
They had bouncy castles set up for each age group which sucked.  And Penelope was devastated that she had to go on the baby one.  Finley enjoyed the castle very much.
And Penelope eventually did too.
They had a craft table where they made photo frames out of foam.
Sidewalk painting.  We never seem to get into the townsite early enough to do this.  Next time for sure.  There was some great art this year.
The kids had cotton candy years ago at the fair in PA.  Penelope loved it but she doesn’t anymore which surprises me a lot.  I don’t like it either but I thought for sure she would.  Finley still enjoys it.
Hanging out with Digger the bear who was explaining why he was captured…..short story is keep your campsite clean and coolers in the car!
Playing x’s and o’s with wood pieces.  Finley was pouting because she was losing but in all fairness Greg was helping Penelope and he never loses at this game.
Trying to lasso her pony
This was a first for us – the Banff Farmer’s Market.  It was a mix of etsy like stuff and local/BC area produce
We killed time before the parade with a magic show.  Finley is obsessed with magic these days.  I though it was mostly lame but she was laying on the ground laughing.  She made it all worth it.  He brought with a real life bunny and bird.
Waiting for the parade to start.  They joined a new family haha
The “Love Wins” float
And a great end to a great day….fireworks in Banff!

Friday, 3 July 2015

Loving Lake Life

Last weekend was crazy hot in Calgary and really, we are just not used to it being that hot.  I am a wimp when it comes to heat unless I am somewhere tropical or something.  We had planned on hanging around Calgary for the weekend since we were going camping on Wednesday but when Greg saw how warm it would be, he googled lake campgrounds without reservations and we found this one.  It’s about 2.5 hours south of Calgary and it was perfect.
This was my view for the majority of the weekend.  There was no sand which was fine by me since I hate hate hate hate sand but I thought the girls would be sad since they love sand castles but it was never even mentioned once.  
Jumping off the dock for the first time.  Finley was scared at first but was soon obsessed.  Penelope would run like she was gonna jump off but never did.  Greg got her to jump once holding his hand but she refused to do it again.  This kid has absolutely no fear in any other area of life but this is one thing that scares her.
Looking for minnows.  There were a few.  Along with a lot of butterflies and dragonflies and horseflies.  FLIES EVERYWHERE!!!
My Friday afternoon selfie.  It was sooooo hot.  
Playing with some older kids and taking turns jumping off.
Saturday morning, we drove into Pincher Creek to buy a boat and replenish some supplies and more alcohol.  It was hot, it tasted good haha.  The boat seemed like a great idea…..
but the girls fought the whole time.  Penelope wouldn’t even try to paddle and Finley only paddled in one direction which made Penelope angry.  Eventually Greg took them both out and pulled them around one at a time.
Catching some rays…..
Penelope spent a lot of time using the paddle to search for treasure because she was a pirate.
And watering seaweed and dumping pails of water on her daddy and sister.  It’s a good thing she’s cute.
The mountain from the dock.  Such a great weekend getaway.  
One last jump in.
Penelope’s goal this summer is to be as good a marshmallow roaster as her daddy.  Friday didn’t go so well for her and she was very upset.  Greg tried to explain to her that it took him like 10 years to perfect it but it didn’t make her any happier.  However, on Saturday she seemed to get one really perfect marshmallow and that made her very happy.
Our fire was awesome on Saturday night.  The wood was so dry that it started nicely and kept going and going and going.  The girls and I were actually in bed long before this fire went out.
On our way home we stopped at Marv’s Classic Soda Shop.  It had been on our list to try out for years and it finally worked out.  Such a great place.  The food isn’t that great but the ice cream sodas, the atmosphere and the music was fantastic.  We can’t wait to go back again.
Penelope loved the juke box and old school music.  She was dancing away and making all the customers giggle.  It was the perfect way to end a perfect weekend.

Thursday, 2 July 2015

Farewell to Kindergarten

Last week was Finley’s Farewell to Kindergarten and it pretty much lasted the entire week.
Monday started with her Kindergarten Sing A Long which meant afternoon kindergarten instead of morning.  It made for an upside down day so to speak.  Here she is before we left for school in her brand new (to her) dress.
The banner all the kids made.
Most kids didn’t put their name but Finley did.  I loved her mermaid artwork.
It was put on in the foyer and it was so hot in there but it was great watching her perform all of their favourite songs from the entire year.
After the concert, there was a reception in the library where we got to have treats and mingle with the kids and parents.  We also received their scrapbooks and their clay creations which you will see in another blog post.
Here is Finley on her last day of Kindergarten.  She is so excited to start Grade 1 in the fall.  At the beginning of June, they started to do Grade 1 things and she was so happy.  Keeping her back a year due to her late birthday was such a great decision that Greg and I made for her.  She has really blossomed this year and is such a great leader amongst her peers.  She had such a great teacher and TA to guide her through her first year of school.
Lining up with her one of her BFF’s on her last day of going to school.
And she’s done.  Farewell to Kindergarten!!!  Look out Grade 1, this bright girl is headed your way.