Tag Archives: Edmonton

The Zoo

While Tim’s parents were here, we took a trip to the zoo. This was the first time we went when Calvin actually cared a little bit about the animals, so it was fun! We actually bought an annual pass, so we will be going more often. It’s not something we normally would have done, but sometimes we need to be forced out of our home and backyard and do other things. Having already spent the money to go makes us do that.

I think Calvin’s favourite part was the petting zoo. And it was probably the sheep’s and goat’s favourite part of their day when they got a Calvin hug.

zoo1His second favourite thing? The carousel!

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zoo2And the last item to do on our trip: take a train ride.

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We’ve already been back once since, and it was great! I think we could just go for a quick hour, and see something different every time. That way it stays interesting.

We Are Homeowners

So, we bought a house!

I’m just as surprised as you are! Two weeks ago we were in Manitoba, thinking we would start hitting up Kijiji to find a place to rent for August. However, before we got home on Monday night, we revisited the offer from a family member to help us buy. Having always been a very small single income family (mine for the first year of our marriage while Tim finished his Masters Degree, and his for the past year after Calvin came along), we weren’t in a position to do it on our own. But when we thought about it, it only made sense to get into the market now instead of paying rent for a few more years to come.

So on Tuesday, just shy of two weeks ago, I called a realtor and we set up a meeting for the following evening. We saw our first two homes on the Thursday night. After seeing those two, I was left feeling a little discouraged. One was too far gone for us to move into right away, and as you all know, we were wanted out of our current place at the end of the month. The second place was in good shape, but it was way on the north side of town and I felt somewhat isolated out there, away from the small handful of people I know, and the areas I am familiar with.

We booked an appointment to see more places on Sunday afternoon, one week ago. I had prayed that morning that we would feel more optimistic after seeing these homes than the last time we went out, and the sermon that morning was on God’s provision, which was a good reminder, although something I have never forgotten. We had about half a dozen homes scheduled to see. After leaving the first one, I felt better already. I remember saying to Tim, “I would be happy living here.” And none of the other places quite measured up to that one.

We called the realtor to book another appointment to see the house for a second time on Tuesday evening, then followed up with an offer after that! We had an accepted offer by Wednesday afternoon, and booked an inspection for this afternoon. We weren’t expecting any major surprises, since the house seemed well taken care of, and we were right.

One bonus of this house is that it is vacant, so we are able to have the really quick possession date of July 31! I don’t think we could be in a more perfect situation in regards to timing. The majority of the other houses had either a thirty day possession date or 90 days for the homes with tenants in them (because that is the right way to do things).

And that’s another thing…we could only afford a home if it had a suite, so we are not only becoming home owners, we are also becoming landlords!

We are very excited for this next adventure, and are so thankful to God for all he has provided us with in his perfect timing!

And if you don’t hear from me in the next two weeks, it’s because I got buried by boxes.

Enjoying the Spring Weather

Today is a day to get things done around the house, so I don’t mind that it looks like this outside:

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Another reason I don’t mind is that I know for a fact that Spring is a reality and not just a far off dream. In fact, last week we had a few days in a row of gorgeous weather! We got to go out to the park and have fun on the playground, and jackets aren’t even a necessity! It’s great having one just a couple blocks away.

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Weird Drivers

In my life I do not normally come across strange situations. Some people attract them; I am not one of those people. But this evening as we were driving home from Bible study, we were presented with a strange situation.

We were driving south on Street X. We came upon our Avenue Y and stopped at the red light, waiting to turn left. However, we were behind a car that was approximately one car length behind the stop line. I right away said to Tim, “I hope they are on the censor.” This light normally turns to a green arrow fairly quickly, so after two turns of the Street lights going red so cars from the Avenue could have their turn, I asked Tim if I should honk. We decided to wait for one more light cycle. It came and went, so I let Max give out a polite little “honk”. The car did not budge. One more light cycle happens and by this time there are two or three more cars behind us.

I decide to get out of my car and get the attention of the driver. I was smart enough to wave and not knock because that would have been frightening for her. And she was smart enough to open her back window and not the front window because I could have been a crazy person. I say something along the lines of “I think you may need to pull forward a bit so you are on the censor.” She shakes her head like she thinks I don’t know what I am talking about and silently closes her window.

I walk back to the car and decide that I will pull out of the lane and turn right instead, then pull a u-turn so I can go straight through on the Avenue. As I am waiting for the traffic to clear so I can do that, the driver in front of me decides that the light must not be working and pulls into the other lane and goes straight through, down the Street. Yay! Now I can pull forward and the whole lane of cars will be able to turn left! So of course, as soon as I get to the stop line, I notice the light coming north has turned red to let us have a turn because a truck stopped. Right away we finally get our green arrow!

But wait! The story doesn’t end there! As soon as I start turning, the truck, that was already stopped at its red light, decides to continue straight through, as I was turning left! Thankfully the intersection is huge so it was nowhere close to hitting me, but what a crazy little string of events!

Then we got home and everything was back to normal.

The River Valley

Yesterday I picked Tim up from work, and instead of going straight home, we went parking by the river.

Just kidding. Well, we did park in a parking lot by the river and had an in-car picnic with some left over sandwiches from a platter from Tim’s work. And then we went for a short walk to get closer to the river for a little view. It was a beautiful, warmish day.

Enjoy these photos!

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The Clearing of the Snow

Snow removal is a full time job here. Not a once or twice yearly thing like back on the coast.

We keep our snow shovel leaned up against the front of the house for easy access. And it sure does keep the plows and graders busy! Our street regularly gets cleared after a good snow fall but this past week something different happened.

It was Thursday afternoon when I looked out out window to see some no parking signs plopped onto the snow banks on the side of the road.

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I may be new here, but I figured out pretty quick that this would mean some pretty major snow removal was coming our way! It was necessary too. We were parking on a few inches of what was now ice, between banks that were a least 4 feet tall. If this is what it is like only one month into winter, I can’t imagine what it would be like after piling up for a few more months! So we parked the car in the back. I am actually glad we have the street parking instead of the driveway out back. The alley is cramped and a little hard to¬†manoeuvre, especially with the snow.

The first graders came early Friday afternoon.

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They did a bunch of passes down the far side of the street, pushing the snow and ice this way and that. They must have done at least 6 passes, moving the ridge of snow from the side of the street, to the middle, then back again. I had to be somewhere then, so I wasn’t around for when they sucked up that ridge that extended down our whole street, but was expecting a nice clean place to park when I got home. Unfortunately, it must have been the end of their work day because our side was not cleared. And since it was then the weekend, our car lived on the other side of the street for a couple days. I’m glad we didn’t have to park out back the whole time!

On Monday morning, I heard the tractors back at work, this time on our side of the street!

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And this time I was around to see them actually get rid of the snow! I had seen these guys at work before, on the highway, but it was fun to see them right out my front window. This is what you call heavy duty!

snow removal (7)You can see above that the truck is nearly full of snow. They must fill up fast. In the 5 or so minutes before this guy came along, two full trucks drove past. They have a little convoy of empty trucks behind the big blower guy, so when a truck gets full, it just pulls ahead and an empty one pulls up into position. They switched out right in front of my window. I feel privileged.

snow removal (8)There were empty trucks going by at least every two or three minutes for about 20 minutes after this. So much snow being removed…I wonder where they end up taking it?

After all that, it sure feels nice to starts from scratch, with a clean, tidy(ish) street.

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There’s Something in the Water

I guess Edmonton has what one would call “hard water”.

I always air dry my dishes. This is for two reasons: why take the time to towel dry them when they can dry while I am doing something else, and I never know how clean my dish towel is. But here in Edmonton, letting them air dry means they are left with mineral deposits making them look spotty and dirty. Even the dishes in the dishwasher come out like that. I have found that opening the door instead of letting them dry by the heat reduces the amount of deposits though.

The same goes for the sinks and tub. I feel bad giving Calvin a bath because the tub always feels dirty. I miss Victoria water, but I suppose this is something I will have to live with.