I think I enjoyed my phone and computer free time a bit too much when we were out of town for the funeral. I’ve been blogging in my head instead of actually sitting down and typing my thoughts out for real. Every trip we make to the Bulkley Valley solidifies our drive to make the area our forever home. (Only a year away now!!) The scenery, the community and it’s strong spirit.

Please click on any of the images to see them bigger.

Strawbale Playhouse

AngelsIt's been cold and then warm and then cold hereGetting some air

We weren’t in town under the best circumstances but did try to stay focused on our family. We spent our time together cooking, playing, skiing, snow shoeing, driving around looking at available property and visiting with family and friends.

Ski with Ari

Leif giving it a goChickadeeLily and Ari heading up for another trip down

It would be an understatement to say that the current state of affairs triggered the start of some serious healing for Cam. While a lot of his father’s things were thrown out, sold or given away before Cam had a chance to even look through them, quite a few boxes once belonging to his Grannie have been found hidden under masses of stuff in the shed. Cam still needs to go back to pick up these boxes that included many many photos.


Most exciting was rediscovering a safe deposit box of small family heirlooms. It was really confusing at first since some of the items were coincidentally kept in envelopes labelled with my name. The mysterious envelopes clearly predated me with their yellowed tinge and type being made with a typewriter. A call to my genealogy enthused brother came quickly back with a whole lot of amazing information. Turns out I share the same name as Cam’s great grandmother, his great grandparents being one of the first families to live in Vancouver, BC. We also happen to share the same wedding day, although were married 95 years apart.

Astlais Mountain

Finding out about some basic family history previously unknown to Cam has offered him a whole new perspective on not only his family but himself.  It’s hard to describe what this knowledge has done for him.

I was sure to soak up all the sun I couldAstlais MountainChickadee

Also in the box was an old newspaper clipping with a picture of Cam as an infant with his dad. The article is about prenatal classes and dad’s being present at births, a new aged idea for the time. Cam’s dad was one of the first people to hold Cam after he was born. This is a pretty awesome thing considering most dad’s at the time didn’t touch their children until they were sometimes five days old! Cam’s dad is quoted “… I now think if any man doesn’t believe he belongs in the hospital when his child is being born he is just not thinking very seriously about it.” Good man.


We visited with family friends as well as our own dear friends on this trip. We are all so lucky to have such support during this sad time. Friends welcomed us into their home last minute and let us stay for the extended time it took before the funeral could take place. The funeral itself was a large event being for both Cam’s step mother and her best friend and with their extensive ties to the community. It was hard to listen to the impossibly perfect things people were saying about their deceased loved ones but I found that if I dissociated myself from my perspective and stayed connected with the way people were feeling in the moment it was bearable and even touching. That night as I lay in bed, I wrote my own eulogy because I can’t stand the idea of people trying to canonise me when I die.

RainbowVisiting friendsCrazy sky

This trip provided Lily and Leif with their first opportunity to ski. It was a little much for Leif. He was so eager to try but simply too scared when he encountered even the slightest of inclines. Lily on the other hand rejoiced in her love for skiing, much to our delight. The cross country skis were used for their intended purpose as well as touring and downhill. Lily would chuck herself down any hill she could find and our friend’s property had plenty of them. It was hilarious to watch!

The groomed and dog friendly cross country trails were super fun too. We enjoyed the fast paced work out it provided.

LeifyChecking out the hill's cross country ski trailsDaddy and Leif

These were dog friendly as well

One of the highlights of the trip was going to a chicken pox brunch! The last time we had the opportunity to get chicken pox Leif was a bit young. We’re still waiting to see if it took and the kids got it. I’ve got my fingers crossed! We really enjoyed spending time with the family who was sharing the pox and the other families there to catch it!

AriDori cozy inside with his mamaHappy with the day of skiing

Building a snow castle

Winter is the time for comfort, for good food and warmth, for the touch of a friendly hand and for a talk beside the fire:  it is the time for home.  ~Edith Sitwell

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11 Responses to “It Is The Time For Home”

  1. debra says:

    i think about the revelations and connections that have been made following my own grandparents’ deaths, and that was without the estrangement and the holes that Cam seems to have had. i can only imagine how powerful this time is for him! so glad for you both.

    (and, though your photos could make just about anywhere look magical, that area is just beautiful…ah, to be skiing!)

  2. Grammie says:

    Wonderful memories made on your trip. I’m so glad that Cam has been able to find some closure and has learned some very interesting things about his family!

  3. Ella says:

    Wow! It sounds like you had a good (& much needed-in-many-ways) time there, despite the sad circumstances. x

  4. Bridie says:

    How fun! Way to go, Lily! The look of exhilaration on her face reminds me of one of the videos you shared of one of Lily’s first biking experiences.

    Do you remember you were the one to teach me to CC ski? That is actually one of my favourite memories from my first stint living in Cran. I was grateful that you were so patient with me as I sure struggled to get the hang of it. That said, even though I found it difficult, I LOVED it. That was also the first time I had pears and enjoyed them.

    Jan had made a simple lunch of pears, fresh bread with peanut butter and bananas and hot tea. You know, I’m chuckling as I type this, but that was also one of my most memorable meals! I remember thinking nothing ever tasted as good…

  5. Annie says:

    Thank you all! xx

    Debra- one day a visit to BC? We’ll go skiing!

    Bridie- Ha! You’re sparking some memories I’d not thought about in a long time. The experience of trying foods for the first time and eating meals with my in laws is something I remember by feel. I remember how it felt and the way it smelled and tasted. I have many memorable food moments there. It was Cam and his mother who taught me to cc ski too! I’m so glad you learned and love it too. It’s a favourite activity for us.

  6. jenny says:

    Gosh, Annie. I feel so much for you. Death is such a strange thing. Freeing and sad at once, in some circumstances. I am glad Cam is getting some answers it sounds like he needed.

    These are beautiful pictures! And I have to ask, what is a chicken pox brunch? :)

  7. Annie says:

    Thank you, Jenny!

    A chicken pox brunch is brunch with kids in the midst of the pox. You share cutlery, toys, lollipops, give hugs and kisses…. All in the effort to get the pox. My kids haven’t had it yet and so we were thrilled to go and try and get it. Lily wasn’t so sure that it made sense but it is important to get the pox before they grow too old!

  8. Courtney says:

    I was missing you all from the neighbourhood so now understand why and where you all were. The trip sounded like an amazing adventure though due to Cam’s parent going onto his next journey… Finding all those ‘treasures’ including the pictures and information on his family, sharing the same wedding day! Wow.. oh I want to see what you wrote for your own eulogy, for sure! xo

  9. Rae says:

    Wow. Remarkable. It sounds like you had a very special time. I sure miss you!

  10. erin says:

    Wow, such a beautiful place and what gracious and open friends to have supported you and Cam (and the kids) during such a confusing, tumultuous and painful time. Keep those friends close, as I know you will!!

    I am hopeful that Cam’s journey continues to open before him, helping the gaps narrow a bit and helping to heal. The interesting thing is, I think we are all healing, and that the little prompts happen for us continuously, but also at key times when support is near or when we are mentally/spiritually (you know what I mean by that, I think) and developmentally ready to cope. It looks and sounds like Cam’s journey will be one of joy too.

    stay warm, friend, enjoy your snow days :)

    lotsa love

    ~erin xo

  11. Thank you, Annie, for sharing your story. I am wishing you and Cam, and everyone involved, continued healing.

    Many blessings,

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