Friday, August 21, 2009

More friends come to visit!

We spent several days this past week with our good friends Steve, Rhonda, Stephen, and Sarah that came up from Texas for a visit. Andy, Sam, and I joined them at the Athabasca Glacier one day. Here we all are looking purty.

And one a little sideways.

This is what the vehicle looked like that took us up (from a trip last fall).

And here are Andy and Sam standing next to the tire of the one that took us up onto the glacier (pronounced gla-CEE-er by our tour guide; I've always been more of a gla-SHE-er gal).

And DO NOT go past the blue cones, or they will not be held responsible! We did taste the glacial run-off. Cold!

After the glacier, we drove down to Lake Louise to the Baker Creek Chalets, where they were staying. They were such cute little chalets!

There were two twin beds up in the loft.

And this cozy fireplace. I think Stephen was singing, "Rock-a-bye baby, on the tree top. When the wind blows, his change will fall out!" Sam thought that was absolutely hysterical, as the coins in his pocket were actually falling out. Andy was next, of course!

Chillin' on the sofa.

Thanks to the Fotiades for the pictures above. I forgot my camera. They took these around the cabin the day before. I believe this is Baker Creek, hence the name of the chalets!

And the nearby train track.

The next day we tootled around Banff, had lunch, visited the candy store, and the boys and I headed back to Red Deer while they stayed in the mountains a couple more days. Among other things, Steve, Rhonda and Sarah canoed Moraine Lake,

while Stephen went fly fishing and caught a trout!

They also saw some wildlife. A mule deer (I think).

A black bear.

And a GRIZZLY CUB! They were in the car the whole time with the car in drive, ready to high-tail it should Mama show up. (Thanks to the Fos for letting me show off their awesome pictures!)

The morning after they made it back to Red Deer, we all went saskatoon berry picking. Good thing, as our supply from last year was all out!

Showing off the fruits of our labor, and some muscles.

Then it was on to raspberry picking down the road.

I didn't know that there's a hard white center that you pull the raspberry off of, and that's why it's hollow on the inside.

Our two bucket fulls that we all picked (more than enough after all the saskatoons), and a picturesque old plow to pose by.

A cozy spot in the trees.

Sam wanted me to take his picture by this colorful shed.

And a picnic lunch on the property.

Then we went home and made these! One raspberry with a few saskatoons, and one straight saskatoon. They were DE-licious! And aren't they pretty?! Rhonda taught me how to make a lattice on the top.

The next morning we said farewell to our friends as they went back home. But not before they had a little pie for breakfast. :o) Thanks for coming, y'all! We had a great time!

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Colorado: The End, until next time

We continue our journey with a visit to Bishop's Castle.

Jim Bishop built this castle all by himself. It's pretty impressive. And he seems like he would be interesting to talk to, as there are signs like these positioned here and there throughout the property:

A large chair in front, fit for the giant that could live there??

The ins and outs of the ballroom? And that IS a giant silver dragon's head on the outside at the top.
The other side of the ballroom.

In a winding staircase that went further up than I was willing to go,

and fairly far down, too.

Hmmm - flash or no flash? Can't decide.

Mom and Bill; trying to get as much of the castle in the shot as possible. Couldn't get the top in!

Showing off their newly acquired rubber band guns.

We then headed to Lake San Isabel in the San Isabel National Forest for a picnic and a little fishing.

It a small lake, but pretty. And did we catch any fish? No! But the two fellas on either side of us who were fly fishing did. Hmmmm.....

Mama Duck and her babies came over for a visit, and food. Okay, probably more for the food.

A parting shot on the way back up to the car.

Oh, and here's how the landscape project turned out. There are little plants in there that Otto planted that will hopefully break up the rock a little once they grow bigger, IF the deer don't find them appealing.

Great job, Otto!

The next day we were on our way back to Canada. Here's Sam enjoying a movie.

We stayed in Billings, MT on the way up and back. Nice town. And I think I took these in Wyoming.

Great trip all around!