Christmas. + also grief.

Hwy 1

We are sitting on the 1 in our Jeep, a mere blip in a line of traffic somewhere between Sicamous and Calgary. As time stretches on, more people get out to play in the snow and the quietness of outside grows as vehicles are turned off. Morgan has played hockey on the road, cleaned off the vehicle and we have had quality petting time with the horses a couple vehicles ahead of us. We have had an argument over which cup holder is the front and which is the back one. I’m convinced The snow is piled up as far as the eye can see, and we happen to be parked by a frozen lake so our view is spectacular. It’s hard to be upset that avalanche control is postponing our journeys when we can be in this delightful snow globe. Occasionally we can hear the booms somewhere on the mountains ahead which is a good sign that the job’s getting done at least. I am personally enjoying sitting and doing nothing after the rush of school Christmas things.

We are currently en route (or supposed to be) to Linden for night. Tanner+Cheney are out at Genes so we are making a 12 hour stop to visit, then heading north up to Edmonton tomorrow with a stop for lunch, hopefully, in Blackfalds with Grandpa Ken and Marilyn. We are going to visit my Auntie Lanes PuraBotanicals studio in Edmonton, and maybe the West Ed mall. Also Morgans cousin Emily is in the unit so we will hopefully see her as well. Then we are going out to Grandpa Gary’s for a couple days, and then to Roblin where some of the Bronsons are getting together. We are hoping to go to Mackay, ID, from there to be with my family for a few days YAY cuz Madison, Mom, Dillon’s and little Max, and Mark&Rhodas family are all going to be there♡ my best people on earth. Then we will drive home to Enderby, bringing my Mom back along with us to spend a couple weeks! Guess we’ll see how the travels go!

Our parent supper was a couple weeks ago already, but truly so much fun. My students ushered their parents in to comfy office chairs, then served them sparkling apple juice while they waited. My decor committee had decided on white tablecloths (ValueVillage), greenery (trees at school), gold candlesticks and candles (assorted moms), and string lights (oldest class boys). My food committee had decided on grilled chicken and BBQ, gourmet potatoes, ceasar salad, cornbread muffins and honey butter, and chocolate trifle for dessert. After supper the parents were brought to chairs in the gym where there were chocolate covered strawberries waiting for them to eat while they watched the class sing songs and act out the Christmas story. It was the cutest thing, all of them dressed as shepherds and wise men or women and angels. After they got off the stage they burst into somewhat hysterical, nervous giggles so I think they were excited to have it over. The parents played volleyball with them after we cleaned up, which was a highlight, so all in all a success i think!

Morgans students put on an equally amazing evening for their parents and I also got to attend. They did stuffed mushrooms for appies, three different meats, and it was nice not to be doing the work:) We were also treated by the school board one evening for our teachers/board supper, complete with steak, cheesecake, and a beautiful charcuterie board made by Jodi. One evening we were invited to Marshall+Janell with Uncle Orlins, Kendals, and Garys for Mexican food (so hard to come by up here!). Lovely evening being with all those people and I stocked up on candles again. If you’re looking for delicious smells, Janell is the person for the job, @ lux_amare_candles on IG. Our school program “The Coming of the Light” went off wonderfully Thursday evening and of course I was very proud of all our kiddos. Our Christmas party was Thursday morning from 9:30-2. Each student brought snacks for their class and then we got pizza in for lunch. We practiced program once, then spent the rest of the day eating and having relays or playing games, and of course exchanging gifts. Morgan and I got assorted things, and Morgan’s class also got him an espresso machine so we are stoked! We have been looking at them for a while so he almost wept when he unwrapped it:)

Exciting news for us…Uncle Orlins have offered us a housesitting position beginning when we arrive home from Christmas break so we have packed up our basement suite and will be moving over to their lovely house for a couple months. We are so excited. Then in March, we plan to move back into our favorite bus!♡ we can’t wait! God opened all the doors and we are so thankful it’s all worked out like it has. We will be parking our bus on their land, out by the shop with a birds eye view down the valley. Come see us:) Morgan has elaborate plans to make ski jumps down the mountainside. We will be out in the country which we are stoked about as well. Also Walds, Ben’s, and Darwins will be close neighbors so we have a sweet community, all school board or students so we can frequent their houses now. Haha. Also of interest, if you get my statuses, you will notice our excitement at finally seeing a bear in BC. A cute black bear who just wanted our trash. And it came on our back porch multiple times so we had good views. Now I’m nervous to come cruising around the corner of the house and have it just hanging out.

our cutest bear

It’s almost my Dad’s birthday, so I’ve been thinking lots of all the happy times and being sad that we can’t have more. I’ve been thinking too of the different kinds of grief and loss people will experience this Christmas. First holiday without someone, missing a loved one who’s gone, missing family who’s far away, another Christmas for a couple without a baby of their own, or rocky family relationships (inlaw or other), are all different things you grieve for anytime, but for sure at the holidays. You are often put in situations with well-meaning people, other couples that do have babies, families without anyone missing, or family members you’d rather not be with. I’m sure there are more examples you could list, but these are some I’ve been thinking of. If any of these are you, you aren’t alone. You don’t have to say yes all through the holidays. I bring my iPad (to draw and design more stickers), a book to read (probably Harry Potter), and I claim a coffee cup that I haul hot drink around in the entire season. I do what I can to help the anxiety I know will hit me at some point. It often will just be something tiny that will suddenly make me so sad for my Dad and the past life we had, or something that triggers a feeling of loss at family relationships that haven’t worked out, but it usually helps me to just find a chair and relax alone. It doesn’t make us less of a Christian to sit and regroup for half an hour. It doesn’t make us less of a Christian to have people it’s easier to be with than others. If none of the above rings a bell with you, then hopefully this can just be a reminder for us all to just be kind. It’s okay for us to not be okay all the time, even at jolly ol Christmas time, and we need to normalize that.

I know I’m being transparent, but I suppose you won’t mind. Anyways, wishing you all a safe+happy Christmas season, from the bus,the bear, and us. Xo.

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