We have had an amazing trip, fantastic hosts, great visits, good food, great sights. It is good.

we landed in toronto, and spent a bit of time with pekka and anita, who I haven't seen for a while, but it was great to visit, we had a great conversation and the food was fantastic too. breakfast was awesome. I loved the coffee. oh. I have become more of a coffee drinker. I have been doing all the driving, so sometimes I needed to stop for caffeine, which is unheard of for me, because I have been so sensitive to coffee in the past, but these days I have been having a lot of iced coffee, regular coffee in the mornings, and it doesn't even keep me awake that long in the car. we forgot our ipod, so we don't have much music with us,I buurned a cd at matthew and cheryl's house in ottawa so we aren't totally without tunes.
we stayed with matthew and cheryl in ottawa for four days, and it was awesome. we had so much fun and such a good time. we had a sweet bbq, good ontario beer, a good time at church, we even got to hang out with the eisenpletts before and after they played a few gigs.
we spent a few days in sudbury, zeke had his first sauna, we swam in the lake, and we visited a bunch of my finnish relatives.
I can't even remember it all.
oh, in ottawa we got to see my friend Robyn from Grad School, and that was cool too. I kept on looking for a pedicab, but to no avail. we rented a two person side by side bike when we were in old montreal, which was beautiful. we ate poutine and smoked meat in old montreal, and it was fantastic.
In montreal, they have this bike rental system bixi.ca and it is amazing. I have been saying outrageous all the time, but I like it. anyways, the bike rental thing in montreal is so great. I rented a sweet bike from a machine at one end of town, and returned it to the other end of town, it was like what I hear amsterdam is like, but a little more official. It worked out great, and we say Jer and Sher play in a little place called L'escalier on Fete St. Jean Baptiste and it was great to hear them, to speak french to the locals, (who really like their music) and to be there for the big national holiday.
we then went to kingston, which we didn't see much of, but had a good time with our cousins, and now we are in london, waiting for the family reunion in Elmira. I really didn't capture it all, but pictures that will come will help explain how much fun we have been having.
Oh, and we got to hang out at the Dn. Gregory Scratch's house with his lovely wife, kids, and friends. I love having the church community.

and, I love the people we have seen, and I am having fun, but I am also missing my home, our church, and friends back on the west coast. I also look forward to starting summer classes. I have never taken summer classes before, so it will be fun.

Bonne St. Jean Baptiste!



Things have changed, I forget that I even have a blog, whereas I used to post daily and check so often, I am now quite busy with two jobs and about to start school in July again, which will be good but again, super busy.
we are leaving on sunday for vancouver, and I get to see Tim Stewart and his family, Bethany and Promise, and we are SO excited to see them. Tim and I will have a mini adventure sometime in the morning, don't know what yet, that is the beauty of it. I get less and less unplanned time, but that is the hazard of growing up I suppose, which is okay. I am glad that we have planned so much of our upcoming trip because it will allow us to keep track of everything, and know where we are going next. there are so many people to visit, so it is important to organize well.

Family is such an interesting thing, I love my family. I love my extended and close family, I am hoping to see my uncle and aunt on my dad's side, but I think they are too far out for us to see, they live on an island in the summer that is only accessible by a boat ride and we won't be in sudbury long enough to make it worth their while to come and get us, which is too bad. maybe they will be in town, but I doubt it.

when I lived in Ontario (briefly) I went to my grandmother's grave, and it was a really interesting thing. I never had done that, her grave stone is all black marble and still shiny, her first names are small and our last name is huge and in an imposing font, I will take a picture this time. There's a cedar shrub growing right near the stone. we will also visit Fr. John Scratch's grave in Ottawa.

and goodness, we are going to visit a lot of living people too, but I guess these folks are on my mind.



We are going to Ontario soon, and I am very excited to see my relatives. I like them, they are good people. I lived in Ontario briefly, it was more like an extended visit, but it was still good. I am also looking forward to a vacation, I think this will be our first real vacation, though it will still be challenging, because we are taking baby on the plane. we are also going to ottawa to visit old friends, and having a family reunion in Kitchener. it will be good.

in other news, the new Dave Matthews Band Album is fantastic. It lives up to the hype and more. There's a great line in one of the songs "Baby when I get home, I wanna believe in Jesus" and it confirms what I have suspected all along, that He is kind of like Ghandi and Neitzsche, (two strange bedfellows if ever there were) who seemed to revere Christ, but couldn't reconcile the behaviour of people like me with the perfection that Jesus was, and I get that, a little bit, because I think the same way, why are Christians so dumb! I mean, I include myself in that. and I think it's partially the perfectionist in me that expects better, but at the same time, there has to be room for Grace, which is the whole point, right?

So in an earlier song, Dave Matthews is singing "Grace is all I'm askin" I think perhaps he needs to extend that to himself and a few others and maybe he'll find what he is looking for.
anyways, the album is beautiful, it is powerful and vulnerable. Dwelling on themes of life and death and sex, as a true frat boy existentialist should, and he does it convincingly, finally, after three albums that sound too poppy and fake. I believe the things he is agonizing over, specifically the loss of their friend and band mate last year. "Lying in the Hands of God" is an especially gorgeous track.

its good. buy it.

oh, and Gabe, good for you, you seem to be pounding it out, balling as it were, keep it up. we miss you like crazy, and I have been waiting for that little tidbit. take pictures, write us a story, on your blog, or in an email, find a moment on a day off. hit up the library like a good treeplanter. Glad to hear you are kickin ass and taking names!