Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Day 5: Kalamazoo, MI

We had a relaxing day with only 1 hour of driving! The kids swam again in the morning at the hotel and Daniel studied some more Greek in preparation of starting school again. We drove south to Kalamazoo where we had time to do some shoe shopping for the kids and shirt shopping for Daniel. We had supper and stayed overnight with Daniel's brother-in-law's parents who pastor in Kalamazoo. We had a wonderful visit with them! They are a godly couple whom we are blessed to know.

Wednesday (today) is a six drive to Toronto and we're home!

(The DeVries' computer wasn't working though so I couldn't update my blog until this morning).  

Monday, August 29, 2011

Scrapbook layout: Liquid Applique

I made this page for my Artists at Heart team training in June to showcase three different ways to use Liquid Applique! I wish you could feel the blue quarter circle - it has an amazing suede feel. We mixed blue re-inker with liquid applique and brayered it over the circle. After heating it right away you get the faux suede feel!

Also the two stars were stamped with liquid applique mixed with Sunny Yellow re-inker. When you stamp with liquid applique, mix the re-inker with it and then ink your stamp up with the mixture. It is best to use a stamp without too much fine detail. Heat it right away and you get a textured image! We stamped on White Daisy cardstock and cut out the images.

In the top right corner I used straight liquid applique and left it over night before heating it with an embossing heat gun to show how puffy it gets when left a long time to dry.

I used this page as the title page for my 2009 album - which is almost done thanks to Studio J! Let me know what you think. Any other ideas for using liquid applique?

Day 4: Grandville, MN

We had a great day! A one hour drive to the ferry, a picnic lunch and then a 2 1/2 hour ferry ride. The kids enjoyed being able to move around and we all enjoyed the fresh air on the observation deck. One more hour drive to Grand Rapids and then a couple of hours spent in Baker Books. Baker Books is a Christian book store that we went to last year and Daniel was able to get some of his textbooks for school. They have a used section as well as all their new books which is great. This year we are travelling a week later so we were in time for Baker Books 40% off used book sale!

 Picnic lunch waiting to board the ferry (since it was so sunny Jeremy decided he should eat under the bench)
 Our ferry - the Lake Express - Lake Michigan's High Speed Ferry

Once we got going, it was WINDY up on the observation deck. Check out the following clip:

Swimming with the kids at our hotel

Sunday, August 28, 2011

Day 3: Madison, WI

Today was a little slower day. We drove one hour to Minneapolis to attend Bethlehem Baptist Church at their North Campus and really enjoyed the music and message there. We thought it might be a smaller church than the main downtown congregation but it really wasn't! We also had a chance to check out their bookstore and found a few new books for homeschooling and Daniel's reference collection (great reasons to buy books :)

Here are some pictures from a small train museum at Long Lake Park near the church:
 "Waiting" for a train

 Checking out the caboose

Can you imagine getting your hair permed this way??!

We had lunch at the park, checked out the museum and then headed to Madison, Wisconsin. We enjoyed supper at Buffalo Phil's again and made it to our hotel by 8 pm. We had a short swim and got the kids to bed. It's been long days for the kids but Jeremy has napped in the van the last two days which was good for all of us! 

Tomorrow is the ferry crossing across Lake Michigan which the kids are quite excited about and Daniel is looking forward to not driving through Chicago! 

Saturday, August 27, 2011

Day 2: St. Cloud, MN

No pictures from today - all we did was drive. Today was our longest drive yet - 8.5 of driving time plus a total of 2 hours of stop time (bathroom breaks, gas and icecream!) We are almost halfway to Toronto though and four more days to go so the hardest part is behind us.

We did listen to the entire audio recording of Dr. Doolittle and really enjoyed it. Jeremy had a little trouble staying focused but he's getting better at listening! The other highlight of today was the Color Wonder books the kids received in their "Day 2 bag". Color Wonder is great - the markers won't get on any else and the kids can colour away in different colours. We had a fun supper at Dickey's Barbeque Pit and then a swim at the hotel pool after. The kids had a lot of stored up energy so it was good for them to use it up in the pool rather than wrestling on the hotel bed.

Tomorrow we're off to church in Minneapolis and then on to Madison, WI. Here's a map of our trip to help you visualize it!

View August 2011 Trip in a larger map

Friday, August 26, 2011

Day 1: Estevan, SK

We're on the road again - this time home to Toronto! We were away by 8 am Friday morning and made it to Estevan by 5 pm. The kids did quite well - they were excited to get their "Day 1 bag"! I've made up bags again for each day with new books, activity books, and small treats. The kids consignment store "Mini Me" in Olds had 50% off all their books so I stocked up a couple of weeks before we left!

We stopped in Moose Jaw at the tourism information centre to find out if the road to Estevan was open or not. We had found out during an earlier stop that highway 39 to Estevan had been closed in parts to repair the road from the flooding this spring. We were happy to hear that it just reopened this morning so we didn't have to detour through Regina! Also, we've checked online and it looks like the road we want to take through North Dakota tomorrow is open all the way - although there are a lot of side roads that were either closed or being worked on.

We enjoyed a swim at the Estevan Leisure Centre (only two blocks away from our hotel) after supper  - the kids really liked the fast slide there! Tomorrow we hope to get an early start for another long day of travel.

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Highlights from August

We're on our way home to Toronto tomorrow - it has been a great summer and it is hard to believe it is almost over. We are looking forward to getting back to our friends in Toronto and a schedule, even though it is sad to leave Alberta. Here are some picture highlights of our last three weeks!
Camping in Banff
 Camping in Banff with my family - on the walk to Sanson's Peak

 Jeremy trying to protect his lunch from an aggressive chipmunk

 The Gondola ride up Sulphur Mountain

Farm Life
 The sheep eating during chore time
 Jeremy & Drover
 Noelle & Drover
 The quad used for mole trapping - one of Jeremy's favourite things to do on the farm!

Bowden Sunflower Maze

One of my cousins and her two children came to the farm for a visit and the kids had a great time together!

Camping at Ol' MacDonald's Resort
 Our tent trailer
 Some of our crew (Daniel's family)

 Nathan loved the go-carts!
 Water + sand = FUN!
 A playground was right across from our campsite and the kids spent hours playing on it and in the sand!