Friday, January 2, 2009

Ramblings About The Holidays

Jacques and I are back in the land of Ice and Snow. It seems like we barely left and boom we're back.

The trips down to NS and back were interesting in themselves. We left Iqaluit on the 20th of December full of excitement about seeing our children. Arrived in Ottawa after an hour and half delay waiting to load in Iqaluit. The waiting area is extremely small especially for a couple hundred people wanting to get out for Christmas. Good flight on the and special coffees helped that!

We all arrived in Ottawa to hear that another storm was coming through on Sunday which might cancel many of the flights out the next day. Jacques checked with Air Canada to see if we could switch flights to get out earlier and beat the storm. He was told that the earliest would be the 27 th. He decided that we would take a trip somewhere south if we couldn't get home to the family. That was alright with me. That wouldn't have been alright with the kids ....but that's life!

We had dinner at The Keg with friends and enjoyed the evening in Ottawa. Life always looks better with good friends, food and wine.

The next morning I looked out to a few flakes that soon turned into lots and lots of snow. We started to check out cancellations in Ottawa and Toronto. Everything in Toronto was starting to be cancelled. Jacques was about to look at flights to Cuba. He saw that Porter Air was flying to Halifax that morning. We got on the phone because we saw that they had some seats available. The line was busy so we headed to the airport. It took us a while as we got lost getting there. As it happened they had seats available at $99 each so we took them. We raced back to the hotel and grabbed our bags then back to the airport. We checked in our baggage then went through security to wait and hope the flight didn't get cancelled. It became a waiting game as the flight kept getting delayed every 15 minutes. It was to leave at 11:40 and we were still waiting to board at 12:40. They we heard the magic words. We boarded and took off at 1:00. It seemed unreal that we actually landed in Halifax at 4:00 that afternoon when our original flight would have had us land at 10:45 that night. Everyone cheered as we landed because we knew we were lucky to make it home that weekend. Of course the family was shocked to have us arrive at their doors 6 hours before they were expecting us. They thought we were calling to say we couldn't made it. The storm hit Halifax soon after we had landed. It didn't bother us as we were enjoying a party with our children. That was the best Christmas present ever!

It was great to see all our children, family and friends. I didn't realize how short our visit was until we started traveling around to see everyone. First a visit with all our children while they were having their own dinner party. It was nice to spend time with all of our children together in the same place. Off to the valley the next day. Strange to go home to our house with someone else living there. It is great that Linda and her family are enjoying our house. We had a terrific visit and got to see a few friends. Jackie was really glad we got the truck up and running. She now has a reliable vehicle to get her to school this winter. Remember Kiddo that it is just a loan!

Getting the Christmas dinner ready. Everyone is pitching in to help!

Enjoying a beautiful Christmas tree and all the trimmings at Blair and Denise's place.

Back to Halifax to spend Christmas with the rest of our family. Friends were kind enough to lend us their house in East Chezzecook. It was a beautiful spot to enjoy the holidays. Then off to the cottage for the last bit of our holidays. Our cottage at Round Bay is really home to me. It has been the one constant in my life from birth. It also made me miss home more that anywhere else we visited over the holidays.
The beach at Round Bay. I look forward to swimming in the waves next summer!

The old cottage is still standing....we don't know for how much longer?

We headed back to Halifax via the valley. Had to say another good-bye to our oldest child. Got to enjoy a meal with everyone at Pizza Delight. It was a long trip for 5 people in a small Ford Focus.

Dinner at Pizza Delight in Greenwood. Alex and Collette look impressed!
Jackie with that mischievious grin of her's. She had just licked Alex's ear and he wasn't happy with her!
All the family is together for the last time in 2008. Looking forward to more fun times together in 2009!

Said our final good byes in Halifax then it was time for the flight back to Ottawa. This trip was very uneventful. We got to the hotel in Ottawa at about 10:30 am. Enjoyed the day in Ottawa and did some shopping. Got a hockey bag and filled it with some essentials...boxes of wine, rum and other things.
Finally we headed backto the airport on the eve of the New Year. The flight was to leave for Iqaluit via Montreal and Kujuak(not correct spelling) Quebec. We waited in the airport with a group who had tried to get out the day before and had to turn around and go back to Ottawa after hours of wait up in Kujuak which is in the north of Quebec. We got to Montreal and had to wait on the tarmack for over 2 hours. We thn got to Kujuak and had another wait of on hour on the tarmack. We loaded on the plane at 8 am and got off after 3 pm. It is not fun sitting on a hot plane for hours. It was good to land after a long day sitting and waiting. We had 15 minutes to pick up groceries for our New Years Eve. Not much left on the shelves. Many of the grocery flights had not made it in due to bad weather. The shelves are filled up again now but we had no milk or fresh vegies for a few days. You have to make do when this happens. We are learning to be very adapting in this new environment. It was a quiet New Year but it looks to be a busy year coming up.


cpm said...

How wonderful that you got to see so many people in a short amount of time! I'm happy you had such a wonderful holiday and I hope your first week back was smooth!
All the best in 2009!

dp said...

Hi Donna, sorry I took so long to comment but I didn't realize that you had blogged. Your title looks the same.. "Getting ready for the Holidays" looks like "Ramblings of the... ... ". Anyway, it was so nice to see you over Xmas and to see your pictures, and mitts. It feels like I hadn't seen you for a year though. geesh... The kids all look great, I haven't seen Alex and Collette in a couple of years and they are all grown up... Happy New year... and I can't wait to visit you at your cottage this summer...

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