No Bears, please.

It's really nice here. I mean, really.

I sat on the deck and had a version of open house, though it was just me, smithwicks and the sun fading behind the mountains. (and a few semi trucks on the highway)

the bears are raiding apple trees in town and I haven't seen a single one in the bush. I have been out hunting at least once a week, and I took zeke on monday. The wilderness is so close to town that I can be in legitimate hunting territory in about 15 minutes. It's weird.

My job is amazing, my beginners can play two notes, and I am excited about that, it's hard to say how fast we will progress, but when they do something new, it's great. It's also interesting to see different levels of ability all together, and to figure out how to address the varying speed at which they grasp things. I learned a few things in my second practicum, but there was so much they didn't teach us, the teacher ed. system is clearly flawed.

I miss vancouver people, but not the traffic, or the weather. I think it has rained twice since we got here, and there is snow in the two week forecast.

We went to a ukrainian church in Lethbridge last week, it was pretty cool, the people were welcoming and the choir, though not great, was beautiful. It sounded like they got along well even though they didn't all sing well. It made me smile, and it was so good to be at liturgy, despite the 200 plus km that we drove.

There was a grizzly bear in front of our house last week, but we didn't see it. Sadly. I have yet to see a Grizzly in the wild.

It's good to be here. Laurenn is enjoying her job, which is great, and I am enjoying being with the kids in the evenings when she works, so that works out well. I like the elementary school classes, but I think I am more suited to ensemble teaching at the high school.

I hope we can see many of our vancouver people soon, perhaps Christmas, but we aren't sure if we can come home yet, lots of factors are weighing in and maybe keeping us here. If you are reading this, come visit anytime, we have room.

we have some new friends, and that is nice. There are lots of young families here, and my stereotype of people working at the mines is quickly changing, our new friend who is an electrician at the mine busted out a Tom Waits Vinyl while we were at their house. Oh, and Chartreuse. It was fun, and I think I will be hunting with him on saturday. It's quite the life here. I do miss the church community though.
Another new music teacher in town and his girlfriend have become our friends, and they are great. It's nice to have people to connect with.

keep us in your prayers, come visit, or skype,


Fernie, part 1. (long and update like)

So, we live in Fernie. And we live at a Resort. No Joke. It's kind of weird, it's like they took the Kootenay equivalent of Beach Acres or Tigh-Na-Mara and turned it into strata condos instead of nightly rentals. And we live in one. Except the fireplace is gas, which is both nice and a bummer. The view from our deck is incredible. Our plastic table is super lame. Did I mention the view? The Highway is about a half km away, which when we are on the deck, we can hear, but when the door is closed, its as though it is not there. But it's cosy, and there are two floors, lots of room for the kids to play. I like it.
And Fernie is so small, I can bike to work pretty quickly. 20 minutes from out of town to the other side of town. So I should start riding, but its around 5 degrees first thing in the morning, and I haven't biked in the cold in a while. And it's 25 in the afternoon. waa waa. poor me. I know. I have to check out the fly fisherman in the river on my way to work.
I joined the rod and gun club, and I have gone to the range to sight in the bow I am using a few times. It is close, even though it too is out of town. Zeke even came once.
I went hunting this morning (sort of) with a guy who used to be a hunting guide. I took him to where I knew there were mule deer bucks, but it was a dubious kind of hunting spot because it was larger residential plots, 5 acres, bigger, smaller, and not a great place to kill a deer apparently. I am learning more every day. He also taught me a number of things about hunting in general and archery specifically. I began to get a picture of little I actually know about the sport. The romance is wearing off and reality is setting in. But I am still excited about it.
L has gone back to work, serving at Boston Pizza, where she used to work, and she really likes it. The people are good, the tips make it worth it, and she gets out of the house. I actually enjoy (mostly) the challenge of having the two kids by myself and it forces me to spend time with each of them.
I have a great bike, and I haven't used it much yet. I hope to use it to hunt with actually, and that would be interesting, especially if I got something.
I'm bummed the Nikkels are leaving, but glad for their sake. Most of our friends live in Cranbrook or Kimberly area. We are getting to know people around here too. One of my colleagues is our neighbour, which is cool. We hang out.
Zeke has a playground right behind our house, which is great, and there's good grass for him to play on, and some kids come and play there from time to time, but at night he talks about the kids he misses. If you are thinking it might be your kid, probably. The other day he asked me if we were going to K and T's house (Ryder Lake) and I said no, it's far away, like Langley, and he got a little sad.
Of course I miss church, but we haven't missed church. I think what I miss is the monks, and their way.
The people here are great, but there's a difference between trying to survive and being so alive you can help others breathe, which is what Fr. Gregory was like. Once he held up a mirror to me and it was so frighteningly full of truth, it kind of forced me to change the way I thought about myself and my actions. I don't know when that kind of spiritual work will happen again.
I trust God, but I guess I don't have much hope for that sort of thing. I sure hope, for my kids sake, that what they say about marriage and kids is true, because my sense is that I am not growing as much as I ought to. Maybe its good not to trust my own sense.
MBSS, my first job, was great. I miss those kids. I know I will enjoy these students too, but right now I don't interact with any older students, and maybe that's what I miss. We had great philosophical discussions, talked about life and I got to tell them what not to do. It was great. and I am sure it will be like that again, but my oldest students are in grade 7.
Come visit.

oh and we went to Kalispell MT. Sort of. Five Guys was amazing. They don't have canned crab at Costco there. I do, however, love Montana, still.