Waterparks, Weddings, Extended Family…

Yellowknife, Northwest Territories, Canada
Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Okay, I obviously didn’t get enough time to enter any log entries during this last week of our travels. So this final entry is going to cover the whole thing.

After arriving in Edmonton on the 16th we spent the morning and most of the afternoon of the 17th shopping for wedding clothes for the boys and other particular items. It took a couple tries and excellent tailoring to get a pair of pants that fit the Boy, but we got ‘er done. We then got to spend a very pleasant evening with Micheline, Frank, and Alcina. What a doll Alcina is! She’s just precious! It was so nice to see them and I wish we could have spent more time with them.

Wednesday involved baking carrot cakes and cupcakes at Mom’s for her wedding this weekend. One would think this would be fairly simple, and it really was, except that the bride-to-be seemed to be humming and hawing about how tall her cake should be. Jessica made two 14″ diameter by about 2″ high cakes intending to layer them. When we left, Dan looked at me and said, “You think she’s going to make another cake tonight?”

Wednesday evening was our visit to the World Water Park at WEM. We had a great time! By going in the evening there were no lines, there was only one slide that wasn’t open, and the wave pool wasn’t too crowded. The Girl, Boy, and Man all partook of Nessie’s Revenge (this is a tall tri-level slide), of which we were very proud of the Boy for doing. They all repeatedly did this ride. In fact, Jessica challenged Dan to a race down it and, thinking he was being smart, Dan decided to try and speed himself up by putting his hands under his butt. His theory was that by sliding on as much skin as possible, as opposed to fabric, he should slide faster. He did win the race, but in the process, because his arms were UNDERNEATH him, he managed to catch his arm under him on one of the jumps so that it tried to rip away from his shoulder. His shoulder was pretty tender for quite a while. They followed Nessie’s Revenge with attempts on the practically vertical Sky Screamer. Dan had done this one before, so it really wasn’t an issue for him. Jessica hesitated only twice before taking Jarod’s goggles and showing him how it was done: “See, you just don’t look down, don’t think about it, and just gooooooaaaaaahhhhhh!” Jarod hummed and hawed, looked down, moved away, hummed, hawed, sat down, got back up, moved away, hummed some more, hawed some more, and then finally decided he wasn’t ready to do it. We all acknolwedged that if he can do it before he turns 14 then he’ll have beaten Jessica.

Thursday morning was supposed to be for decorating the wedding cake and cupcakes. Of course as soon as we arrived Dan’s supposition was confirmed. There was a third layer to the cake baked and ready to go. Now, I say ‘Thursday morning was supposed to be for decorating’ and it was used for that purpose. So was Thursday afternoon. The bride-to-be had to pick carrot cake, which means we had to use cream cheese icing for the base. Had we done such a large cake before in cream cheese icing we would have known that it would be okay to add much more icing sugar to the icing in order to make it thicker and managable. We did not know this. So although we did make it a little thicker than normal, it took constantly keeping it cold once it was on the cake to keep it from melting off the cake. Of course, I also made the mistake of actually starting my mother’s dishwasher when I realized she had forgotten to do so. If I had just left the darned thing until later I would not have made the kitchen so warm in the first place for the icing to melt from. The actual decorations were done in buttercream icing, which worked just fine. Sort of. The icing itself was perfect. Colouring the first batch of icing also worked perfectly. Colouring the second batch of icing, not so perfect. See, we didn’t measure the amount of food colouring we used on the first batch. So of course we couldn’t get it right on the second batch without ending up making a double-batch and adding a little bit of violet here and a little bit of black there to finally get something even close to the eggplant colour we got on the first batch. It was all very frustrating, but we finally got everything done to everyone’s relative satisfaction by around 4:30 in the afternoon.

In the meantime I had planned to get together after many, many years with my friend Lisa P. at the science centre at 4:00. When 1:30 rolled around I realized this visit wasn’t going to be able to happen, so while Jessica fought with the buttercream icing colour I called Lisa and visited on the phone for about an hour. I so wish it could have been longer! And in person! Now that we’ve reconnected I’m confident we’ll be talking more often on the phone.

Friday was our spa day. Mom, Antje, Jessica and I went to Spasation for manicures and pedicures. Jessica had never had either and Antje had never had a pedicure (who knew!) so this was fun. Jessica of course had a condition to going for this at all. She came away with a big grin on her face due to the lime green nail polish she chose. Anyway, it was a lovely, relaxing few hours with the girls followed by a quick bite at Red Robin’s. Once we returned to Mom’s place she got another surprise: her two sisters had driven in from BC for the wedding and didn’t tell her they were coming. Even Uncle Mike and Uncle Bob came!

The evening was spent at the church having dinner, decorating the hall, and doing the rehearsal. This is where I finally met my new step siblings (actually, I had met Laura and her kiddies earlier, but not the brothers). There’s Laura and her three children (her husband, Mike, couldn’t make it); Michael and his two girls and his girlfriend, Debbie, and her two kids; and John and his two boys and his fiance, Vanessa. They’re all pretty cool people and Martin and I got along well with them. The rehearsal, as a result, was rather chaotic as none of us could seem to contain our mirth – or perhaps the cause of our mirth. Let me just say there was lots of hair pulling and fake farts. Feel free to roll your eyes at this point.

Saturday was the wedding itself, which went off without a hitch (although there was some hair pulling and a very discrete fake fart). Although anxious about being in front of so many people, Andy held himself together very well and totally relaxed after the ceremony. Mom of course cried during the vows, but they were happy tears. We got to see some family we hadn’t seen in a long time, and met some of our new family. Photos were taken near a small man-made lake nearby. The reception was fun and the food was great (huge thanks to Rachelle and George, who just rock!)

Sunday was the potluck at Paul and Sarah’s acreage. Pretty much everyone came for that and we got to visit more with our new siblings and with family we hadn’t seen in a while, including new family members. My cousin’s new baby is just adorable and I’m so glad we got to meet him! DJ even got a picture of Jarod holding Jamie… I just love those pictures. Jarod is so good with babies and little kids. My Uncle Mike turned 70, as well, so his birthday was celebrated, too.

After that Dan, Jarod, Jessica and I went to see ‘Scott Pilgrim vs. the World’, which turned out to be one of the funniest and entertaining movies I’ve seen in a long time. And it’s Canadian! Gotta love it!

I’m probably forgetting some cool stuff, but for now I guess that’s it. Oh! The wildlife count: obviously nothing relevant during the week. On the 23rd we saw maybe three hawks, one of which we witnessed literally drop from the sky to catch it’s prey just outside of Morinville. The 24th had much better results with six bison, five deer, three hawks, at least a dozen geese, and one hitchiker. Not in that order. If you want it more or less in order of sighting then it would be something like three hawks, five deer, a dozen geese, six bison, and a hitchiker.

Until next time!
Adelle 🙂

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