As I watched public schoolers and home schoolers alike start the school year last week, I was enjoying an extended summer vacation. Eric’s parents were visiting from Ontario.  

While in the Grande Prairie area, we enjoyed some cultural and historical sites in Dunvegan. We all headed down the Icefields Parkway together, to visit more family, and say goodbye to Eric’s parents. On the way down to Calgary we stopped in at the Athebasca falls for a picnic lunch and some site seeing,  and then Canmore for dinner. From there we headed to Calgary. Although the zoo was what everyone was originally so excited about, it was the time with family that ended up being the highlight of the whole week. Such a great trip! When it came time to leave, we didn’t want to say goodbye. So, we decided to turn the drive home into an adventure of it’s own. We headed from Calgary to Drumheller, where we took in the Royal Tyrell museum. When it came time to have lunch, we were encouraged to check out the “Last Chance Saloon” in nearby Wayne, where the population was once over 2000 people, but has since dwindled to 27. The saloon remains almost exactly as it once was in it’s hayday, during the early 20th century, as a rough cowboy bar and hotel.

 It was certainly an experience worth having. We chatted with the locals, had a decent lunch, and then got back on the road and headed to the Hoodoos.

The Hoodoos were awesome! We felt like we had been transported to another place or time. There was alot of interesting flora to investigate, including cactus! I let the kids climb abit, and then we had to head home. It was 30 degrees in Drumheller that day, and only 9 degrees when we arrived home in Grande Prairie, so the trip overall was a great way to say goodbye to the lazy days of summer, and hello to the fall, and a new rythm, including more structured activity. Thankfully, everyone is excited about started up our school year. This year promises to be even more exciting, and jam packed with adventure than the last!

After months of back and forth on the materials we were going to use this year, we decided to stick with Christopherus instead of switching to Oak Meadow, and going with Mammoth Math, not Saxon. Saxon didnt end up looking like the right fit after all. We are thinking of officially starting our school work on the Equinox, but will begin integrating lessons on Monday, so that our natural day slowly builds, and everyone is comfortable with the work load.

Our next trip will (hopefully) be to Whitehorse in the Yukon Territory. I have been scoping out cabins, so hopefully I can convince Eric that this is something we should do when the Northern Lights are in full force. Dog sledding, snow shoeing and cold evenings in the hot springs sound fantastic! We are expecting a new addition in the spring, so we will also have to consider that in our planning.

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