Thursday, May 17, 2012

From Here to There and Back Again

So, for those of you who visit for the weaving and such, then the post is not for you this time. On the other hand, if you like road trips, babies and beautiful BC, Canada... then grab a beverage and settle in.

Okay, first up:

Ethan at two weeks old

You had to know that we wouldn't be staying home for too long after the birth of our first grandchild!  We made calls, some plans and soon after, we hit the road! Okay,  the ferry first...  we left via Nanaimo harbour since we missed the message the closest terminal at Duke Point was open again (after a ferry some months ago 'rearranged' the berth structures...oops!)

We are going to slip between the two points of land and then turn to starboard, with the Coastal mountain ranges across on the other side to frame the view.

We made good time through the city and out towards the Fraser Valley and we were at Ethan's house in no time. Before I could even get my purse down, shoes off and generally in the door, I turned around and saw this scene:


Ah, male bonding! Being a Grandad looks good on hubby Bruce.

Not to worry, I got my cuddles in! It was amazing how all the right moves came back to me and I was burping him like a pro! (feeding was up to his Mum, which happened right after this picture as he was hungry!)

It was a low key visit as it was still early since his birth.  His Mum is working on keeping him to a schedule and Ethan didn't get the memo! We did what we could to help  (cook, laundry etc) and there was a night out at Ethan's other grandparents for a birthday supper for my son. A big family dinner with kids and crying babies, loud chatter and laughter.... and lots of cameras flashing!

It might have been his father's birthday but this little man was the centre of attention. He seemed to take it well but before too long, he started to be a bit cranky....but we weren't finished snapping pictures of everyone!

A finger was okay for a while.... but he soon realized he was being duped...

So after some quiet snuggle time with his Mum and he reappeared composed, with a full tummy and ready to party!  Okay, he fell asleep....

We enjoyed our time there and hoped we were of help. Before we left, we made sure that this little boy gets a good start and made sure he had his very first..... TRAIN! His Grandad was a railway engineer afterall,  so its mandatory.

There is a button to press under the 'smoke' handle, the face lights up and it whistles and goes toot-toot. It will be awhile before he can get his hands on it, but you know we have sowed the seeds for a train crazy toddler!

Time to hit the road and head to the central southern interior of BC and go to Kelowna to see Hubby's mother for a few days.  The trip is about 4 1/2- 5 hours by car through some spectacular scenery. I had my camera ready and snapped as we drove. I knew we were heading to Avalanche Alley and its still semi winter in the mountains. Before Hope, BC. we saw Mount Cheam (click to enlarge!)

We pulled over at the Floods- Hope road and behind the Husky truck stop there was an amazing waterfall cascading down the hillside..

From there we were on the Coquilhalla Highway and  well on our way.... and soon at Avalanche Alley!

Here's just one of many we saw and also concrete platforms set by the road where they  set up howizters and shoot shells to trigger avalanches to safe guard travelers.   Next up, the Great Bear snow shed:

I wonder what it would be like to be in the shed and have snow, rocks, trees and debris hitting it and going over the edge? Probably crossing your fingers and hoping it wasn't built by the lowest bidder!   :)    On the other side, there were more mountains, some with stunning cornices of snow and glaciers.

... and then the Big Rock I was waiting for.... Yak Mountain.

It is granite rock in many layers like slate (but on a grand scale!). We reached the Merritt  Visitor Centre rest stop and stretched our legs. Then, onto the 'Connector' as its called and in the final run. The terrain up here is high altitude soft rolling hills, lots of trees and small lakes. This one is Corbett Lake:

Its a great fishing spot and there's a lodge. We often see people in 'belly boats' trying their luck.

The next view I was looking for was the distinctive big mountain that was caught up in the nasty forest fire that swept Okanagan Mountain Park and down into Kelowna, where it burnt homes (five of many which belong to friends and weavers). When you see the mountain, the lake is right there!

A few more miles and the view opens up....

Around another corner and there was Kelowna's new floating bridge....

We could see many new buildings and home built right to the  hilltops! Things are booming in Kelowna and the traffic rivaled Vancouver's at times. The most noticeable new feature?  This walkway across the six lanes of traffic.

We spent an enjoyable time visiting with 'Granny' and she enjoyed the fresh pictures we took of her step great grandson. Our visit coincided with a turn in the weather and we enjoyed toasty days on her patio admiring her garden of flowers.  I did squeeze in a yarn store visit but I'll save those details for the next post.

Soon it was time to leave and head for home.....we had glorious weather for the road back through the mountains and they put on a grand show with blue cloudless skies and white, white snow!

Yak Mountain doesn't look quite so brooding this time round.

Mount Cheam usually with  cloud cover most days, sat proud in the sunshine.

The trip home tends to wear after a bit and so we were glad to get on the ferry and get back to our Island. I napped in the car and Bruce took a picture of the brown silty waters of the Fraser River showing a clear line across Georgia Strait, or the Salish Sea as it is now called.

The spring snows we saw up high in the mountains will all make their way to the sea here. This was midway on the two hour ride.

Since getting home there have been the usual chores to tackle and catching up to do. I sat and wove a book mark yesterday but it was a happy but brief twenty minutes while I waited for laundry..  Today was groceries and tomorrow the dog goes to the beauty parlor and then.....

Well, life should be back to normal soon.... right??   


Bruce said...

Great trip, huh? The weather was fantastic and everything went smoothly. Your posting of the trip is quite thorough.

It was fun, but sure did wear me out.


Delighted Hands said...

What a great trip and your grandson is beautiful! Congratulations!

Anonymous said...

Thanks for posting those pictures of the mountains!! I've tried to explain to the Tuesday Weavers what it's like but I haven't gotten that far west in a long time so these really help make my point. Everyone should go west sometime in their life, across the Rockies and to the coast!! My goal is to get back to your island in the next few years. I haven't been there since 1965. I suspect it's changed alot.....

Acorn to Oak said...

What a wonderful trip! Congratulations on the birth of your new grandbaby! He's adorable!

Cindie said...

Love the non-fiber pix - cutie of a grandson and incredible scenery.

Susan Harvey said...

This comment from Carol:

Thanks for posting those pictures of the mountains!! I've tried to explain to the Tuesday Weavers what it's like but I haven't gotten that far west in a long time so these really help make my point. Everyone should go west sometime in their life, across the Rockies and to the coast!! My goal is to get back to your island in the next few years. I haven't been there since 1965. I suspect it's changed alot.....

Sorry Carol! I hit the publish button but your comment disappeared entirely.

These mountains are small when you compare them to the Rockies! Tell your friends to google Jasper and Banff Alberta and then you'll see some bigger rocks!


Hilary said...

What a lovely ride, and a lovely baby too.

Linda said... certainly compensated for the non-weaving post! Sweet Ethan is simply adorable!!! I guess dad will get used to taking a back seat for the next several years!! ..and what a breathtaking geography you inhabit! It was great fun and awe to enjoy this post. Thank you for sharing!!

Bonnie said...

Congratulations on your new grandson. He is adorable.
Yes, thank you for sharing your trip and the beautiful sits.

bspinner said...

What a beautiful baby!!! He looks so at home in both of yours and Bruce's arms.

I'm so jealous. You live in such a beautiful area of the world.

Spinning Out of Control said...

Great pictures! The baby is so the pic of him crying, lol! Babies are sure good at letting you know what they want.

dorothylochmaben said...

Great pictures of you both with Ethan. Love the scenery you passed through on the trip, it looked great. Nice to have some good weather and everything go smoothly. No wonder you were tired though !