16 July 2006

Our Vacation

Can you believe that I am almost 30 and I had never been out of the country until this month?

On Saturday July 1 we drove to my in-law's house in Eastern Idaho. We stayed there until Monday morning, and then our family and Grandpa and Grandma all loaded up into the van and we headed north.
We slept in Helena, Montana that night. There was a pool at our motel. The kids couldn't care less where we go or where we stay, as long as it has a pool! The next day was the 4th of July and to celebrate, we crossed the border into Canada.My father-in-law was born in Alberta. That's why we were going up there, to see the farm where he grew up, and to visit some relatives. My in-laws make trips to Canada probably once a year, and most of the time don't have any trouble at the border. Since 9/11 the borders have gotten tighter and there have been times that their car has been searched and they've had to provide birth certificates as well as driver's licenses, and had to answer lots of questions. We were hopeful that all we'd have to do was provide our IDs and we'd be on our way. Frugalbaby got really sick of waiting in line to cross the border since the vehicle wasn't moving, so she graciously started crying. The border guard was a young guy, probably childless, and I imagine the crying baby helped us along. He did say to Frugaldad, "That's a happy one you've got back there." The adults showed their driver's licenses and I had birth certificates for the kids. I did have my birth certificate, too, (so did the others). Some other time I will tell the story of the pain in the neck it was to get a copy of it.

That afternoon after we dropped our stuff off at the motel (which did have a pool, by the way) we drove a few miles to see the farm where my father-in-law grew up. Due to unfortunate circumstances (the oldest brother sold it without telling anyone else first), this 640 acres is no longer in the family, so we could just drive by and take pictures. It's a beautiful piece of ground, isn't it?

The next day we drove into Waterton, which is a Canadian national park. I only got a couple pictures before the battery in my camera died. Pretend you see lots of pretty pictures of scenery. The deer just wander the streets of town. The weather was great the whole time we were there.

We took a minute to walk into the Prince of Wales hotel, which was huge and fancy but smelled kind of musty. This one is a postcard because the camera had died by then, and I hadn't had time to get it charged.
Later in the afternoon we drove to Lethbridge to visit family. On the way there we saw this cool wind farm. There are over 100 turbines. In general, the Canadians seem to be a little more aware of the environment than us Americans.
The next day we drove to Polson, Montana and the kids were really disappointed that our motel didn't have a pool.

Also while we were in Alberta we drove past the Cardston Temple.
And also went to the cemetery where my father-in-law's parents, grandparents, and sister are buried.

The Canadians? Their traffic signs are hilarious. I didn't get enough pictures because being in the back seat, I couldn't see as well, and couldn't get the camera out in time. Some of my favorites:

IMPORTANT INTERSECTION AHEAD
(when we were someing to a junction with a highway)

STOCK AT LARGE
(instead of the plain old CATTLE XING we have here in Idaho)

and

TRUCKERS, PLEASE REFRAIN FROM USING ENGINE BRAKES TO AVOID NOISE
(or something like that--it was so polite!)

But I did get one picture. That's kilometers per hour, folks.
We brought back Big Turks and Mackintosh's Toffee and lemon pie filling and these great cookies that you can only get up there. I even saw Kraft Dinner in the grocery store, and I can't believe I didn't think to buy a box and see if it really is indeed the same thing as Kraft Macaroni and Cheese.

We spent another day at the in-laws and then came home last Sunday, which was Frugalgirl1's birthday. But that will have to be a later post, because this one is long enough!

6 comments:

Heidi said...

Wow... it looks like you guys had a great time! Thanks for sharing the pics
Heidi

Gina said...

sounds fun!

QueenMeadow said...

How fun!! Looks like a great vacation :)

Melissa said...

How fun! Good ole Lethbridge! I used to live there! And yes, Kraft dinner is just the same! You didn't miss anything exciting!! LOL!

Alissa said...

Dude. I was just in Calgary. And you're right... their traffic signs are HILARIOUS. My favorite: LOGGING TRUCKS, and seriously... no logging trucks... no exits or entrances... and no trees... so so weird.

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