Goodbye 2018, Hello 2019

Sunday morning we flew from Kelowna, British Columbia to Edmonton, Alberta. We had brunch with our oldest son and daughter-in-law and then they drove us to our youngest son’s place for the night, where we had another great visit and got totally worn out by our youngest grandchildren. It was just an overnight visit but we are so happy we were able to see all our children, and all but one grandchild, this Christmas 🙂

Yesterday afternoon our daughter-in-law drove us to the airport and we happily boarded our flight for Phoenix … we were looking forward to our own bed!

A nice Edmonton sunset.

We were doing great and were all set to make it home just in time to bring in the new year … but then our suitcase was one of the last to come out and we ended up being the last to get dropped off by the parking shuttle.

But even with that it was looking like we may still make it, until we started seeing signs saying I-10 was closed at 35th Avenue and we needed to exit. Now that probably isn’t a big deal when you live in Phoenix and know the area, but once we were forced to exit there was no further direction provided 😦 Fortunately Holly came to our rescue and helped reroute us. I then hit Google to find out why the Interstate was closed. Four hours before a bank was robbed and that resulted in a high speed chase along several freeways throughout Phoenix, all ending with an Officer Involved Shooting on I-10. From what I read it looks like nobody was seriously injured, but it caused I-10 to be closed for a very long time.

We were unable to make our next turn once we exited I-10 because of a serious accident at the off ramp. That accident was followed by another one just before our next turn. Phoenix had had some recent rain so we are guessing that maybe the roads were slippery … or the New Year’s Eve celebrating started too early :sad:.

And then once we got back on I-10 we came across another accident. Yup those Phoenix roads are dangerous, so we were happy to turn off I-10 onto Highway 85 and head down to I-8.

Even though it was dark there was no question we were back in the desert. The recent rain had filled the air with smells of creosote and mesquite bushes.

Since we were not going to get home before 1:00 a.m. on January 1st we decided what the heck, we should stop for a final meal of 2019!

We hope you can look back on 2018 with fond memories, or for a few, who I know it wasn’t a good year, we hope you can find comfort in moving on to a new year.

We wish you health and happiness in 2019 and Safe Travels 🙂

Until next time …

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A Fun Week In Edmonton

We left Abbotsford on a nice sunny day on our flight to Edmonton.

Normally we would have gone for a visit Thanksgiving weekend and flown from Kelowna but that weekend didn’t work out for our son’s. Plan B was to get Maxx over the Coquihalla before the snow hit and fly from Abbotsford, which worked out well since we got an awesome deal on the flights … $116.00 return for the two of us on Flair Air! No that’s not a typo, the flight to Edmonton was $39.00 each and the return flight was only $9.00 each 🙂

It wasn’t long after we departed Abbotsford before we were flying in bright blue sky above the clouds.

As we approached Edmonton we had to drop back below the clouds and were greeted with snow 😦 It was cold and the white stuff was falling as we headed to our son’s house.

We had a great week which involved lot’s of snuggles; pedicures, lunch, and shopping with my daughter-in-laws; and shared meals and walks with our son’s and their families. All to soon it was time to fly back to Maxx so with our last cheery “Good Morning Grandma & Grandpa, how are you today?” wake-up greeting from our two year old grandson, we loaded the car and head to the airport. The weather went from snow and 0C to bright sunny skies and 22C the day we left!

Soon we had flown past the snowy Rocky Mountains and were treated to beautiful aerial views of forests changing color.

What I think is Harrison Lake in British Columbia.

And the sunny Fraser Valley!

We had a beautiful warm sunny day yesterday, 24C, and more of those days to follow for the rest of the week. This morning we woke up to a gorgeous sunrise that pictures just don’t do justice.

Until next time …

Back to Warmer Weather!

All though really it’s not a whole lot warmer, it was 0C (32F) when we flew out of Edmonton and 8C (46F) when we landed in Kelowna. Of course the wind died and the temperatures rose considerably on the day we left Edmonton, but it did feel much warmer when we landed in Kelowna than we experienced this past week.

We believe this picture shows the Battle River which runs in front of our friends ranch in Camrose, Alberta … we think he lives right on the bend in the river but it’s hard to tell from the air 🙂

As we flew over the north end of Kalamalka Lake, on our approach into Kelowna, you could see how much snow is still sitting in the hills.

The Okanagan Valley, where Kelowna is located, is sitting at 152% of normal snowpack right now. Last year our snowpack level was 105% of normal and we had some major flooding … I’m a little scared of what is going to happen this year!

Our approach into Kelowna was a little unusual as we came in from the south. I have flown many, many, many times in and out of Kelowna and I can only remember landing from the south a handful of times.

The wooded area on the point in the middle of this picture is Bear Creek Provincial Park where we spend our summers.

But it was nice to come in over the city from the south rather than the north and get a different view from the air. I was able to get some good shots of the city and had a lot of fun identifying locations and zooming in on some areas 🙂

The Floating Bridge crossing Okanagan Lake into Kelowna. At the north end of the lake sits Vernon, British Columbia, Kelowna sits in the middle, and at the south end of the lake sits Penticton … it is one massive lake and you are only seeing part of the northern end in this photo!

For those that live in the area, the building surrounded by green space is Okanagan College.

This is a picture of my sister’s place from the air, can you see her house? 😉

We arrived home shortly after noon and had time to do some pruning after unpacking. It is nice to be home but I am missing all those smiling faces we left behind in Edmonton!

Until next time …

Brrr … Cold

Last Wednesday we packed up all our warm clothes, I put on my warm winter boots and borrowed winter coat, and we headed to the airport for our flight to Edmonton, Alberta.

Taking off from the Kelowna Airport

Kelowna along the shores of Okanagan Lake

Why would we do this???? Well a visit with our two sons’ and their families was enough to make us brave the very cold weather Edmonton is still having. It is not unusual for Edmonton to still have a lot of snow this time of year but it is never this cold when we come out in the spring 😦

Taking off from Vancouver, British Columbia … we got a really cheap flight but we had to make a brief stop in Vancouver on our way to Edmonton … trust me the flight was so cheap ($236.00 total, return, for the two of us!) that is was worth a stop in Vancouver 🙂

We haven’t really done a lot while we are here, other than visit and spend time with our two grandchildren, but in all honesty there is nothing wrong with that. Hopefully when we return in the fall we will be able to get outside, but we will have time outside with the grandchildren when they visit us next month in Kelowna, B.C..

Arriving in Edmonton. It has been so cold in Edmonton this year that they barely have any snow!

Until next time …

We Are Home!

Since home is where we park it, and Maxx is parked in Yuma, and now we are in Yuma we must be home.  It was a very fun ten days in Edmonton and Kelowna but it sure was nice to walk out of the airport last night and be greeted by warmth.

The best sunset this year 🙂 Also a great sunset because we watched it from the plane leaving Edmonton, Alberta and we were finally on our way back to Phoenix.

Now I’m off to bed 🙂

Happy New Year, safe travels, and all the best for 2018 …

What A Trip!

First off … Happy New Year … here is what I had planned on saying today 🙂

As 2018 starts we look forward to many more miles, more beautiful sights to see, family and friends to visit, and fellow bloggers to meet.

So to our family, friends, and fellow bloggers thanks for traveling along with us.  We wish you all the best for 2018 and are so happy you are a part of our lives!

So here is the new part …

First off a little background …

As you probably know we are full time RVers who call Kelowna, B.C. home. We have no sticks and bricks home in Kelowna since we live in Maxx. Right now Maxx is chillin in warm, sunny Yuma, Arizona keeping an eye on our shed and our neighbours … okay lets be fair, our neighbours are actually looking after Maxx and our shed but they have told us they are both behaving, so all is good.

Now I am getting to some confusing parts here so hopefully I give you a good synopsis of life the last week.

On December 23rd we flew from Phoenix to Edmonton to spend Christmas with our son’s. As I mention yesterday on December 29th we had a bonus stop over in Kelowna to see our daughter and family and were to fly back to Phoenix on December 30th. This made Kelowna a connection point on our flight … keep the connection part in mind. Due to weather in Calgary we were unable to get from Kelowna to Phoenix on the 30th.

Now airlines will not cover your accommodations, meals, and taxi if your flight is cancelled because of weather. Most of the people our flight from Kelowna to Phoenix were from Kelowna and could go back to their homes, but of course our house is in Yuma right now. So it occurred to me, as we were standing in line at the airport waiting for WestJet to rebook us, that we were actually at a connection point and in that case the airline does have to pay your costs. Now we knew this may not work since we have a Kelowna address but we thought it was worth a try. We also thought that WestJet would work harder to get us on a flight quickly if they were paying for our stay in Kelowna, and we are now tired of the snow and want to go back to the sun 😀

The other thing that came into play was the fact that our daughter has a bad cold and we knew it would be better for her to rest and get well and that wouldn’t happen if we were at their house. Lucky us we were given a hotel voucher, dinner and breakfast vouchers, and taxi vouchers to the hotel and back to the airport. We were also told that it would probably be better if we phoned into WestJet from the comfort of our hotel room and rebook our flights, so that’s what we did. After an hour and a half on the phone Saturday evening I was able to get us a flight to Vancouver and then onto Phoenix on Tuesday.

Now we only had vouchers for Saturday night so Sunday morning we took our free taxi back to the airport to get vouchers for our next two nights in Kelowna. Our hope was to go back to our daughters for New Years Eve if she was feeling better but since we had to be at the airport at 4:30 a.m. Tuesday morning we figured it would be easier to stay in the hotel Monday night.

Have I lost you yet? Hopefully I’m making sense 🙂

Anyway back to the airport on Sunday morning. Once the WestJet agent realized they were going to have to pay our expenses for two more nights they were all of the sudden able to get us on a flight back to Phoenix on Monday, but here is the kicker … we are going back to Edmonton and then onto Phoenix!

So to sum it up, for the price of a return ticket from Phoenix to Edmonton we were able to spend six days over Christmas with our son’s; four days in Kelowna were we had a great visit with our daughter and family, were able to see my sister and family, and also were able to have lunch with our best friends, all the while being put up at a hotel with meals provided by WestJet; today we will fly back to Edmonton and hopefully spend only two hours in the Edmonton Airport before getting on our return flight to Phoenix. It seems like a really roundabout way to spend Christmas in Edmonton but it really worked out for us … or at least it will if all our flights work out today.

We hope you all had a safe New Years Eve and we wish you nothing but happiness for 2018.

Until next time …

Until next time …

Merry Christmas

Hubby liked the quote from my last year Christmas blog so much that he asked me to post it again, so here it is …

“And the Grinch, with his Grinch-feet ice cold in the snow, stood puzzling and puzzling, how could it be so? It came without ribbons. It came without tags. It came without packages, boxes or bags. And he puzzled and puzzled ’till his puzzler was sore. Then the Grinch thought of something he hadn’t before. What if Christmas, he thought, doesn’t come from a store? What if Christmas, perhaps, means a little bit more.”

I also love that quote because Christmas is so much more than presents and I think you feel that more and more as you get older. We no longer need physical things but we love family time. Yes I do get excited about decorations and Christmas baking but that is because they all bring back memories for me of when our children were young and how much fun Christmas was. Now that they are out on their own they are forming new traditions with their husbands, wives, and little ones and it is so neat to watch that. However the traditions that tug at my heart are the ones that they grew up with and still continue 🙂

I am spending the early hours of Christmas morning snuggling with my five month old granddaughter who is teething and not sleeping well … and I am one happy grandma.

From hubby and I we wish you all a very Merry Christmas!

Until next time …