teacher appreciation week

i am a teacher. doors slam. feet cross the front door mud grates. voices. discussions of lunch food, hockey teams, and singing make up the din of pre-bell clamor. gloves grabbed from lockers, hasty good mornings to Ms. Bronson, and a handful of flowers end up on my desk while i get a brief five-minute reprieve until the bell beeps. we sing. do verse search. read devotion books. then math. problems and problems. yes you will have to know this. no you may not skip the story problems. bathrooms aren’t for use before school, they’re during math class. numbers flee brains. sympathy and consolation because a cat had kittens and two died and it was their best cat. shoulder squeezes. back to speed drills. pencils get chewed until recess. injuries one and two of the day will maybe happen at first recess. the gravel isn’t good for soccer. the ball gloves don’t always catch accurately. skinned knees are my specialty. i pick out sand and gravel and anoint with salves and creams. we discuss band-aid sizes. then its into class and i listen to reading and teach how to know if it’s “then” or “than”. jiggling knees signal lunch and recess are overdue. at lunch i get to see first hand what some students bring. i am the “warmer-upper” for the forgotten hot tray lunches. a cold corn dog usually comes to me on a thin styrofoam plate. sometimes pizza still in tinfoil. sit by someone you haven’t sat by yet this week, i say. don’t talk with food in your mouth. yes, this is the third day this week Mr. Bronson and i are eating meatloaf for lunch. recess two brings another injury, usually. fists in the air for home-run cheers. gloves thrown to the grass for less wind resistance in runs after missed grounders. blue sky and kids cheering. i promise ice cream if they hit a magpie with a pop fly. dust billows from slides into home. story hour. blessed quietness. some giggles because the goat butted someone in the story. then more language. diagrams and adverbs and transition words. spelling words aloud and then used in sentences. the library is frequented. the pencil sharpener is busy grinding. chairs squeak. sighs as fresh spring air comes in the smudged window. last recess where there probably won’t be an injury. an argument rather. it’s been a long day and tempers rise. we have an office chat. we all want to be friends deep down so we have to give and take. hugs. more soccer. ms. bronson when i am grown up i want to live in the wild so i can hear God better. okay please watch the ball and yes you could probably hear Him more clearly there. then science and insects. head, thorax, abdomen. the pines sway outside my window. no bear is nesting in them, sadly. forgotten news needs to be shared. right now. in science class. their dirt bike is fixed and they got to ride it last night. would i like to watch them ride sometime. yes after you get back to wasp nests and katydids. jobs last. desks are straightened and water bottles drained. boards erased. trash bags emptied. reminders of tests tomorrow and missing books and hot lunch. hugs or handshakes as they leave for the day. i am a teacher.

We have felt very appreciated this Teacher Appreciation Week and I got inspired to write this. We have been spoiled with a grocery gift card, flowers, a mug, coffee and donuts, and lunches from Teresa and Sarah Jane. Its been so fun. We’ve been going through a dry spell:)

Wichita tacos.

As for life, we spent Easter break in Montezuma which is where everyone chooses to go on school holidays right? ha. We picked up Madison in Wichita and drove to Southwest KS where we attended the wedding of Harry&Cheyenne at Homeland, and spent some time with Grandma Jul and Bruce&Sidra’s family. And I just loved spending time with Madiā™” Sunday afternoon we went over to Shelby&Heidi’s new place and got the tour. It is lovely and I want their fireplace. And you guys, we found the best taco place called Taqueria El Fogon while we were hanging out in Wichita waiting to fly out. We hadn’t had tacos like them since we left California last July and they were gooood. The place is nothing for looks and their sign is written in peeling, black electrical tape but please go there. It was quite a short Easter trip but we are very glad we could go!

spring in BC

Now we are in May. Like it is almost the end of school and Morgan and I don’t know where the year has gone. The weather is springy and bears are coming out of hiding. Morgan and I went driving Sunday afternoon after lunch at Boston Pizza. Bighorn sheep were out in abundance and eagles in their nests. It was nice to have some relaxing time away. We had a busy weekend with the Youth Singspiration that was held here in Enderby over the weekend, and we weren’t even that involved. We got to help serve brunch Saturday morning with some other couples which was fun, and we stayed a couple hours longer so Morgan could play ball and I could talk to Mitchell and Chad. I love old friends. It was fun to catch up with people, some I hadn’t seen for a lonnng time. Even a couple girls I taught Bible School with in Warman, Saskatchewan, years ago. This week we are doing CTBS tests at school so I have had some free time. I’ve been working on things for next year because our summer is quite busy. We are starting to work on finding program ideas here at school as well. Our program is June 10 so we are still a month out unlike you States people! Next week we are taking the bus in for her checkup so she’s road ready by June 10. We are planning on leaving straight from our Play Day and heading towards California!

So life is continuing here and wherever you are too. People are living through great things and terrible things and yet God is still with us and we still have time to love people. Thank you for being in my life. xo cheyenne linn

spring break.

Horse Trailer Tacos in Vancouver

We had spring break the 18th-25th of March and decided to drive down to Vancouver. We spent a couple days there, wandering the sidewalks and looking out coffee shop windows spattered with raindrops at the blur of cars and people. I liked Vancouver in the rain. It made me want to sit in a coffee shop nook and read while I sipped an ever-hot, refilling latte. We found a taco place in a horse trailer which was really cute. One afternoon we went to the Museum of Art which I wasn’t particularly impressed with but it was interesting I guess. I’m super excited about going back to the Louvre in Paris. Also did I mention we are going to Europe this summer? I can’t remember. More on that later. It was nice to be back where seagulls and boats and the ocean existed in smells and sounds around us. I love our mountains and the bald eagles constantly on cruise in the thermals by our bus, but there is something about the ocean that hits differently. We got the idea to look up Savarios since they’re doing tract work in the city and ended up meeting them and Lyle&Agatha(visiting from Manitoba) for supper. Then we went back to their place and spent a fun evening discussing everything we could think of. We drove home Thursday on the Sea to Sky Highway through Whistler. All in all, a relaxing spring break.

Friday evening we had a school fundraiser, the Route 97 Diner. Our kids all dressed in the cutest polka dot, black, red, and white outfits. The boys wore white and red paper hats and the girls had black and white checked aprons some of the oldest class girls had made. Our tables had red and white checked tablecloths on them with assorted Coca-Cola decor scattered around. The oldest class had made striped awnings for the food and drink areas, and red plastic baskets of cheeseburger, chips,potato salad or coleslaw, and a pickle were served by the students. For dessert we had ice cream sundaes. It was such a fun evening. Lots of people dressed up to attend and it was really cool seeing what everyone came up with from the 1950’s! The money donated is going to work on our softball diamond and playground.

We have been happy to get a little company the last month. Morgans parents came in March and spent Thursday-Tuesday here. We had some invitations to Randys, Trevors, and Lances if I remember rightšŸ¤” Casper&Janalee came from Carrot River over last weekend and spent it around here. We went for coffee Saturday morning and had supper with them at Uncle Orlans Saturday evening along with Rosemary, and Titus&Vicki and co. It was great fun to catch up with Janalee again from my Hesston days.

We gave our answers back to Enderby and I’m happy to say we are both going to be teaching there again with our dears Rosemary and Natalie. We are so happy. Morgan will have Grades 8&9 and I will have 3,4&5 which means I get to keep all of my super cool kids:) School is just cruising along. Colds have came through and Morgan and I finally caught them after holding them off since October. Pretty good I guess. We have Easter break next week so we are flying out to Kansas and meeting Madison to visit Grandma Jul and for Harry&Cheyenne’s wedding in western. The end of the month we are in charge of a brunch for a singspiration the youth are having here so that will be busy too.

The weather is warming up and it’s getting all beautifully green and the students just want to be outside all the time and I’m right there with them. Morgan has the shower finished at the bus and we hung a clothesline up so we are getting settled in it seems. The nights are quite cool and the steam from the shower rises into the night sky and I listen to the coyotes howling on our hill and Morgan laughing at something in the bus and I’m pretty happy. Last night the northern lights were flickering a little and it was lovely.

time flies.

Muddy freezing dripping British Columbia. The weathers been moody. Like we don’t need coats anymore, but now we need coats and toques and gloves because it’s so cold again.. Our snow pile at school is slowly getting smaller, although there is still quite a lot. We have had the most glorious sunshine days and the sunsets are getting downright ridiculous with their beauty.

January went by so quickly. You don’t even know what we did at Christmas because it’s been so long since I’ve written. To sum it up, we drove down to Mackay, ID, where my sister Madison teaches and met my family there. We had such a happy time together with Mark&Rhoda and Uncle Mike’s. We brought Mom back with us and she has been staying here with us ever since! Our school started January 10, a week late because of government restrictions but it worked out well for us because we got to spend the week with Mom. Our aide broke her leg right before school restarted so Mom got to fill in for her at school most of the month and that was so fun having her around helping out. She helped my class and I with art on Fridays, and made a Navajo taco lunch for my class on the Navajo Day we had one day. We have gone thrifting and shopping a few times and had so.much.company. Or at least it feels like it anyway. We have also been invited out a lot. I’m happy Mom got to be with our friends and was actually able to get to know them more than just seeing them once on a Sunday morning. We took mom to the airport in Kelowna on the 14th so Morgan and I took the afternoon off. I just do not like being apart from my family, and I guess we didn’t get Mom persuaded to stay here with us:) I will probably be very sad for awhile so my email is cheyzzle@gmail.com if you want to supply me with Starbucks treats to make me feel better. haha.

In an effort to stave off lonesomeness since its February and Mom isn’t around, we are working in the bus every evening so we can move back into it in a week or two. I am doing a deep clean before we move in, wiping out the drawers and washing the dishes and that kind of thing. After living in it for a year and road tripping and then sitting for winter, it needs some TLC. We had a little leak on one wall this winter so we may need to do some touch-up painting as well. We are so excited to start bus life again! Uncle Orlins came back a couple days ago, and the guys are going to work on getting gravel to our bus spot so we can move it down by the shop.

all the coffee shops. and avocado toasts.

We went to Pincher Monday and Tuesday for in-service so that was a fun getaway. We drove through Cherryville where we have a baby congregation, then got to take the ferry across Upper Arrow Lake, into Nakusp and down into Nelson where we spent night. We found good Mexican food and coffee shops and it was lovely. We spent a night at Scott&Mary and the other night at Justin&Lindsey’s. Got to spend a supper with Sheldon&Loralie and another with Jerry&Wendy and Craigs. Kelly&Jo brought hot lunch for us at school so we feel we got caught up with a few people at least. So fun to see my old students all grown up sort of and in Scott’s class now.

This morning Morgan took me out to House of Armstrong for coffee which was delicious. I watched some eagles for awhile outside in the sunshine so I guess I’ve turned into an old lady bird watcher. No regrets. There are a lot of bald eagles around here and they are just beautiful. We also saw a couple coyotes this morning which caused an argument because they are so pretty and should not be hunted but Morgan has been influenced by Landon and Clark (some of his students) and has actually gone coyote hunting with them so that doesn’t make me angry, just very disappointed. Haha. Anyways Morgan went with friends this afternoon and I am in Vernon. I went to the library for awhile and got a coffee while I listened to my book. I am enjoying this little alone time. Also, I have some books I’m trying to finish reading, so stay tuned for a book suggestion list I’m working on. Have a lovely weekend friends.ā™”

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 thereā™” 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!ā™” 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.

school meetings & Christmas greetings

Jasper views

So, Tuesday the 9th we left for school meeting in Crooked Creek with Amy and Rosemary. We spent the night in Valemount and arrived in CC in time for supper Wednesday evening. We even got our school Christmas program planned while we drove. Morgan and I spent nights at Chuck&MaryJo Reimers, who we sort of knew but on the other hand didn’t know at all and now we do and we absolutely loved them. Crooked Creek (actually they are the Rosedale congregation I think. Like does anyone even know that? I didn’t.) congregation were excellent hosts and we had delicious food and listened to inspiring talks by school board and teachers until Friday at noon. I got to see so many old friends that I had known in my previous Alberta life and that was just an inspiration to catch up.

Everyone departed mostly for home then, but Morgan and I turned off our mature teacher brains and switched over to wedding mode because Friday evening was the supper thing at school (for Kelsey and Jordyne’s wedding) in which I got to see some of my favorite people and also add to my favorite people list. Saturday morning was a couples brunch and the local couples spoiled us all with delicious food and coffee and a very fun morning catching up with old friends and visiting with new ones. I was thriving in the crowd of course. And I must say that there are just such nice couples from BC to Alberta to Manitoba that I talked with and it was just so fun. Saturday evening was the wedding and Kelsey and Jordyne were lovely and so was the butter chicken we had for supper. Came home and got a bad cold because why have a week with no sleep and all fun without a consequence? haha

If you’ve been to Crooked Creek, I guess you know that the best donuts on earth are here.

Last Sunday Morgan had a chance to go do some CDR flood work by Merritt so he was gone all day. I went to Randy&Cindy for lunch with Eric’s and Carl&Nora and had a relaxing day. I didn’t mind getting some alone time in:) This week we had Friday off for report cards so Morgan split some wood that day while I did some shopping. We stayed late working at school a couple evenings, and Friday night went to Uncle Orlin’s for supper and wonderful chats. One night we took pizza up to Lance’s and played Crokinole and Rook on Rook off all evening so that was a blast. And since we hadn’t played Crokinole enough, we stopped in at Carlos&Jodi’s to play some with the kids and also have coffees. Tonight we had Parent Teacher Conferences which I’m relieved to have over with, although my parents are so cool. It makes all the difference in a school year!

We have another busy week planned, and it seems like the days get more packed until Christmas. Saturday evening my class is putting on a supper for the parents for their Christmas gifts so that will take up a lot of the week. How to plan for 8 busy students to help make food in a kitchen without using too many band-aids or too much drama? Tips welcome. I always love doing it with my students though, and we make a day out of it and have a good time. Morgan is doing the same thing except his is the week after mine. I do have my student gifts wrapped and at school and the school programs are sent home to practice so at least we have a couple things checked off the list.

It probably seems like I talk about the same things every post and in reality, it seems like life settles into a routine when you teach school. We like it. The snow makes us happy. It’s rained off and on the last couple weeks but the snow is still around. Every Thursday morning we make a Timmy’s run and get coffees to bring to Amy and Rosemary. Even this is a routine and im a fan. We have some fun news that I will share next time if all goes as planned. Keep us in your prayers while we navigate school! Xo Cheyenne B.

Art Ideas from Enderby teachers.

Lamb Pillow

Notes: I tried yarn for stitching, but it was too thick to pull through the fleece. I used fleece for the body and dollar store felt for the ears, mouth, and legs. For lower grades, the legs, mouth, and ears should be tacked on or sewn ahead by an adult. -Rosemary Ratzlaff. Follow the Pinterest link herešŸ‘‰https://pin.it/lcuvOeE

Paper Airplane Challenge

Notes: I made one of these out of canvas and drew the points on. Every so often I’ll have the students make paper airplanes and spend the rest of art period trying to get their planes to fly through the holes. They sometimes make multiple planes, trying to get a better build, and some students keep them over until the next time I pull out this project. They love it!

Singing Children

A favorite in the winter. Copy Christmas song, cut out toque and mittens. I have used fabric for both of those, or paper. Cut out face and hair, draw on face, and assemble. These are some my Mom did for one of her art classes.

Winter Children

Notes: Cut coat and mittens out of cool patterny paper. I drew braids for the girls, and used whatever color hair the students each wanted. Glue cotton balls on and add eyes. Use a small coffee filter for the coat hood.

Magazine Silhouettes

Notes: Print silhouettes, cut and glue magazine strips, and cut out. Put on construction paper for an easy project.

Bicycles

Notes: I drew dots on the back of the tires and we pulled yarn through with a yarn needle. -Rosemary Ratzlaff

Lace Landscape

Notes: On your choice of background, cut white snowdrifts , draw tree trunk silhouettes, add in a cozy house or two, and cut circles of different laces for the snowy treetops.

Color by Number

Notes: These pictures took a couple art periods to complete since they are very detailed. Morgan used this book from Amazon for his Grade 8 & 9 class. šŸ‘‰ http://Color Quest: Extreme Coloring Challenges to Complete https://www.amazon.ca/dp/1438008562/ref=cm_sw_r_apan_glt_i_JWPNEV2AB6ZA2RCT6R10

Tie-Dye Turkeys

Notes: Start with markering your coffee filters since they will need time to dry before you glue things on. I have found that Crayola washable markers work the best. They don’t need to color every bit of the white coffee filter because once it’s sprayed with water, the colors bleed and spread. I have the turkey body, legs, and beak ready to cut out and glue on when the coffee filter has dried. I usually lay the filters on a piece of cardboard to spray, then move them off the cardboard to a table to dry faster. If I start art class at 2:15, they are usually dry by 2:45 so the students can quickly finish gluing things on.

Spiderwebs&Spiders

Notes: -Amy Penner

nōĖˆvembər

Dark, cold mornings. Fog hanging low over the mountains. Pine trees lost in the rainclouds. Wood smoke curling lazily. Smells of coffee and cologne. My favorite person beside me, holding my hand. Comfortable silence while we look at the world. Golden leaves crunching. Keys clattering in the lock. Shouts of children greeting the day. My classroom comes alive.

Basically this sums it up. They’re getting shorter now, the days. Sometimes if I get up when I’m supposed to, it’s still dark outside and the lights of the town are scattered in the fog. We found bear poo the other night outside our back porch so that adds to the scenery as well. The snow is creeping closer, mountaintop by mountaintop. It’s even supposed to snow here this week. I catch myself spying for Christmas gifts when I walk through the stores and singing Christmas songs a lot. Before bed I look for the Northern Lights which we’ve seen a couple times the last month and they get more beautiful each time.

This week I had a “farewell fall” week at school. I had the students guess the weight of a pumpkin one day, guess mystery items in a box, and guess how many candies were in a jar. It was quite fun but I ran out of steam because my evenings are full of revivals so I ran out of time to continue coming up and organizing schoolwide projects. But I promised them a “winter week” after Christmas. We have talked about the Christmas program too so I feel quite in the spirit of things. Also I just have to say how much I love all of our students here at our little school. They come up with the craziest things and do things they shouldn’t but they are such a great group of kids. My class is planning parent projects for Christmas and I want to give my classroom Christmas vibes so I will be working on that soon.

For a couple Saturdays Morgan has gone to the range with Lance’s. I went the first Saturday but forfeited last time to get some shopping done. It is truly a trial to spend my Saturdays shopping, especially when there are friends and campfires to be with instead. Next Tuesday after school we teachers are leaving to drive to Crooked Creek for school meeting. It works out so well because Saturday is Kelsey&Jordyne’s wedding there also! It will be a very full week of people. Morgan and I are also staying with some people from that area, which feels weird because we are used to the bus and our space. The bus has been winterized and we will pull it out next spring, or sooner depending how much we miss it.

Old Hand Coffee in Abbotsford

We have cruised all over for this last month. On our Thanksgiving weekend we made it as far as Abbotsford before we realized we couldn’t afford Vancouver Island on teacher wages, and also the ferries were booked up. So we spent the evening and next day in Abby, trying coffee shops and going into little shops and thrift stores. It was so cool. Then we headed home because we had been invited to Joe&Myrna for supper Saturday evening and it was quite a frolic. Scott&Mary were out so spent abit of time with them. For Thanksgiving dinner we went to Ken&Brenda with their fam whom we love so we had a wonderful time. Now its time to Christmas everything up. Lucky for us in Canada, Thanksgiving is over so we can decorate for Christmas already.

We have had lots of food invitations this month as well. Doug&Elaine for delicious steak grilled by Jake&LaNita, a pie fest at Carl&Nora’s, Anthony&Teresa, Kevin&Joyce, Cam&Heather, Ben&Penny (where we made chili rellenos, a first for me), Carlos&Jodi with William,Rosie,&Amy, to name a few. We also had Eric’s and Titus’ over for SmashBurgers one evening. Ben&Penny are school board and once a week one of the board couples brings snack after school which is just awesome so they brought snack Thursday. Teresa brought lunch for us one day this week which as you know is an answered prayer for teachers during revivals:) just writing all these names brings joy to me. We didn’t know these people two months ago and now they are just dear to me and I see all of their faces when I type. How fun.

I signed up for the Heart Sister thing here so I could maybe get to know the ladies more. I’ve had inspiration that the men should start a Heart Brethern side of things. They all seem to have so many “good” ideas for the ladies and think it’s so easy for the ladies to find things to give each other. Therefore I have challenged several of them to undertake it as well, although I haven’t seen much follow up.

Our Christmas plans fell through with my family because tickets are so so expensive. We are quite sad but there isn’t a lot anyone can do. So, Morgan and I are debating what we should do. I think it will be quite relaxing, and include a stop in Roblin for the Canada Bronson’s Christmas and maybe Pincher Creek. I’m scouting for tickets so we may end up in Hong Kong, or make it as far as Calgary. Who knows? I have had a tough day today, missing Dad, then in turn missing my family and Dan&Nat and our boys. Full headspace with school stuff and revivals so we didn’t do much. We went to a ski swap in Vernon this morning and then did some school shopping. Morgan ran a couple errands this afternoon and I got out my Christmas box which was a happy thing. Wishing you all a good upcoming week, and hope you can make sense of this post since it feels a little scattered today. Xo chey

new normal

back porch views

Well, school in Enderby has started, in case you were all wondering. Most of the days we’ve been here so far have been sunny with a few rainy days scattered here and there, which Morgan and I do not complain about. It’s a little greener than when we first arrived, and the trees have been changing slowly the last couple weeks or so. There is one particular maple, a green through the the middle and brilliant red around the edges that I admire every time we drive to Vernon. We have mostly spent our days at school, which I suppose is good since that’s what we have been hired to do. Last Saturday we hiked on the Enderby Cliff trail that’s right outside of town. Enderby sort of lies to the south of the Cliffs, not quite in their shadow. We have a beautiful view of them from our back porch so we eat supper outside and watch them turn pink in the sunset, that’s if we are home from school by the time the sun sets. We live in the bottom suite of Rodney&Adeline Esau’s house, and our door and windows have the most wonderful view. We are mostly settled into our place, and have the bus parked for now until we have a free weekend! Sometimes a doe and her fawn are eating in the neighbors lawn when we come home and we always accidentally scare them off. I lament often that we haven’t seen a bear yet, although we have had some close calls. Rosemary called us the other day so we left our supper cooking and drove to see the bear but it had already disappeared. We at least got to hear it making a racket in the woods so we know they do exist. People here see them all the time so I’m hopeful.

School is good. It sometimes feels like we are in our own little world there all day and we have no clue of outside happenings. There are 36 students. We teachers take our checking to the office after school and munch and grade and discuss our days. It’s quite fun. We probably have the best co-teachers. Their names are Rosemary Ratzlaff and Amy Penner. They both have good humor and wit and are experienced teachers to help with any problems we may have. I quite enjoy our conversations. Morgan loves teaching. His kids are really cool and seem full of life so that makes it more fun. My students are amazing, of course. I am kept busy learning the new games. Like why isn’t King’s Base the same in every congregation? Well, it’s not. And other games are called something else in the States but up here are a different name with the same rules. So by the end of the day my head is usually full of new information. Then there’s learning new songs, how hot lunch works, who gets the gym on rain days, and so on.

I turned 30 on the 27th which I guess I can tell you since it’s over. I was sort of dreading it but I’ve had such a tremendous 30 years that I’m becoming more accepting of the fact. There happens to be another girl with the same birthday here so there was a big party held for us. Campfires, volleyball, some stray fireworks, delicious discada, and new friends made for such a fun evening. I got some darling little gifts. Then, if that wasn’t all enough, I was given a note by my students that we were taking a class trip on Wednesday. So late Wednesday morning some Moms pulled up and hauled us over to Vernon to Davison Orchards. We had lunch after the rest of the Moms arrived, and Penny had brought me sushi:) then went on a “train ride”, picked out pumpkins, went through the gift shop, and sipped pumpkin lattes and cider. It was such a great fall outing. I missed fall when we lived in California so I’m glad it’s just taking it’s time and getting more beautiful here.

Wells Gray Provincial Park

For our fourth anniversary a couple weeks ago, we drove up to Wells Gray Provincial Park which was more wilderness than we had seen for a long time. We hiked to Bailey’s Chute and watched the salmon trying to jump up the falls which was so cool. I hadn’t seen that ever, I guess. It rained most of the day and we just loved it. It was almost like a rainforest in the woods while we hiked, with giant leafed plants and mist rising over the green forest and damp earth. It truly felt like an ancient place. We spent some time in Kamloops, shopping and eating sushi dreaming about our next four years and so we had a fun time.

This next weekend is Canadian Thanksgiving so we are trying to decide what we will do for our long weekend. There are so many options to choose from. So we have considered Vancouver, or driving somewhere up North. Enderby has been so awesome to us already. Like we have had invites all over and that has really helped us to feel at home and also to start figuring out which children belong to which parents and so on. I hope you all have a wonderful week, and please pray for us teachers of MVCS. xo cheyenne

saskatchewan>alberta

After leaving Saskatoon, we drove a couple hours to Neilburg where we did a 30 minute stop at Lars&Shari. Only Lars was working so we saw Shari and new baby Skylar Grace and we had a fun time catching up. We stopped in Wainwright, Alberta, for the night at a little dinky RV park. A thunderstorm came through while we were out riding bike so that was terrifying but we got back to the bus and made coffee and sat in the dark and watched the lightning so it turned out okay.

We had a relaxing day Friday. We stopped in Camrose and did laundry before driving down to Grandpa Gary & Grandma Cathy’s out at the lake. We got there mid afternoon and Uncle Brydons family pulled up in time for supper as well. Saturday the kids swam with Morgan and Uncle Brydon and Grandma, Auntie Lane and I chatted at the house. Such a fun day.. Uncle Brydons had to head back to Edmonton later in the afternoon and Uncle Jared arrived. Morgan and I made plans and drove to Edberg for supper to Andrew&Brittney. What a delightful evening. Jon&Carolee were there as well and we had yum food and conversation and a crackly fire. A top evening for sure. We spent Sunday with Grandpa’s and Jared, relaxing and catching up with cousins and uncles and aunties who stopped in.

Monday morning we left and drove to Linden, another very important stop. We parked at Gene&VJs and did a lot of catching up and hanging out. Had supper at the field with them and Dalin&Shirley Monday eve, and then Mama and Rosie (VJs mom and sis) came for toast and hot tea around the fire. We are teaching with Rosie this year in Enderby so Morgan finally got to meet her.

Tuesday morning VJ gave me an aromatouch massage and in the afternoon I was with Cecily. I mostly gave her baby name suggestions while Morgan brought us drinks. Then Zachs and Davons and Brian Baerg and Rosie came for supper to Gene’s and we sang and played games and I had bits of conversation to catch up with all of them.

We left Genes at 6 yesterday morning. I was still in bed, obviously. Morgan drove us to Canmore where we stopped at Rocky Mountain Bagel Co. to eat breakfast since itd been recommended to us by Eric&Abby clear back when we were in Manitoba. We were not disappointed. The mountains on our drive also didn’t disappoint. Like I wanted to just spend all day looking up but at some point we had to keep driving. We picked up a hitchiker somewhere between Radium and Golden and hauled him for aways. A nice man from Quebec who chatted and was quite interesting.

Our bus cruised along so well over the passes that we got farther than we intended. We stopped and had a swim in some hot springs in the eve and then grilled steaks and potatoes for supper. Grandma Cathy had given us fresh cukes so we made tomato cucumber salad, and Auntie Connie had given us fresh BC peaches that we had with brownies while we watched the sunset on the mountains and contemplated the fact that our journey is almost over. We have been on the road almost two months and it’s bittersweet to know we’ll be in Enderby today. Yes today! We can’t wait to see everything. We are dropping the bus off tonight and borrowing a vehicle for us to drive down to Seattle tomorrow. Canaan&Tara are driving our Jeep up and meeting us Saturday so we are excited to see them and also hang out in Seattle abit. Please pray we can get our Cvid tests back, and both vehicles back across okay. Once that’s done we will be relieved to have our school stuff and able to focus on school, I think.

Mabitoba>Saskatchewan

actual picture of us most nights.

Thursday afternoon we had just left International Falls driving west and north towards the border when my phone buzzed and my test results came through. Morgan got his as well, and we were both negative so we felt it was an answered prayer that it all went smoothly. The border crossing was fine for us, the bus not so much. The border official was very helpful tho and we got it figured out pretty quickly so our bus is here on a visitor visa for a year, or we can import it any time.

We arrived in Steinbach area around the same time the rain and thunder did. Morgan and I are so happy to be where it rains, although everyone here was quick to assure is that this was the first rains in a longgg time. We got to Micahs in time for supper and spent the next several days there with them. Morgan worked on the bus doors and rode with Micah on the truck some, and Kandis and I and the girls did some shopping in Steinbach one day. Saturday afternoon we cruised in the bus over to Whitemouth area where we stopped first at Morgans cousin Renae&Jeff and toured their garden and produce stand. Then we stopped at Orlan&Krista where I sort of wanted to just drive the bus down their lawn to the river and live. We are sad they’re home from Kelowna because we won’t be near them now! For supper we went to Uncle Richard and Auntie Wanda’s beautiful fairy woods with paths lit with candles. It is the prettiest little place. I hadn’t met Cheyanne yet because she’d been in Ukraine last time we were here and she forfeited youth wedding supper and stayed around so we loved being with her. Uncle Jons and Jeffs and Micahs came for supper as well and we had a very fun evening and ended up back at Micahs again later for night. Sunday was spent at Rosewood congregation where Micahs attend, and we were at David&Bonnie for lunch and they are some stellar people. We love being with them. After church in the evening, Scot&Raquel and Savario&Alicia came over for night lunch and we loved that too. Such a good time reconnecting with old friends and making new ones!

We left Micahs early Monday morning and had a fairly uneventful drive over to Roblin. We stopped at Grandma Bronsons and saw her new apartment, then spent supper and night at Uncle Calvin & Auntie Roxine. We spent some hours cruising around with Kelson, Brittney, Leah, and Cory&Janae looking for moose and bears because we’ve heard they “see them all the time.” After a lot of bumping through fields and weeds, we had some proof there were living things because we’d seen some raccoons and deer but that was it. We can’t say Kelson didn’t try. We all went to Grandma Bronsons for lunch and then we headed out for Bredenbury. We were just abit down the road when Cory messaged and sure enough, a big black bear had just crossed the road in front of them. Ugh. So annoying.

Our time in Bredenbury was short and full. We made a stop to visit my Edmonton house papas, Harry&Millie, and a stop to see Christopher. It was so good to see them all again! Last time I saw Papas was at my Dad’s funeral I think, so it’s been awhile. We stopped at another Bronson cousin, Jill&Perry, and then went with them over to Uncle Myron & Auntie Twylas for supper. We had a lovely evening and scored some of Taylor’s coffee which we can’t wait to try ! Back to Perrys for night and breakfast with a stop at the local butcher shop on the way out.

Saskatoon

Last night we found a campground in Saskatoon and stopped there for night. We had grand plans of butter chicken for supper but we are having an issue with our propane that we will have to fix before we use the stove apparently. Honestly I’m surprised more stuff hasn’t rattled apart on these Saskatchewan roads we’ve been forced to endure. So we rode bike into town along the river to Old Spaghetti Factory. We had a grand time riding bike this morning too, this time to an outdoor store. We are woefully unprepared for cool weather, which we have been in the last week, so Morgan found some gloves and I found the first Christmas gift to buy for the season šŸ˜€ we also got lattes at Venn Coffee and spent the rest of the morning cleaning up the bus, reading, and eating hummus. Now we are going to Value Village before we leave Saskatoon. We really liked the bike paths along the river here, and the murals painted all over the city.