Our final week of our trip has been a roller coaster of emotions and experiences. We’ve been home for 4 days now and I’m finally getting some time to write our final posts.
On Monday night we went to Kyle and Danielle’s house to carve pumpkins and enjoy the evening with them. They are such a fun chaotic family. I went to see some of Kaitlyn’s volleyball game but by the time I got there she had already played and was off the court for the rest of the game. It was my first volleyball game I’ve ever watched and it looked like a lot of fun! But the game was short – 20 minutes I think. Afterwards we went to their house and ate pizza. Oh my gosh so good!!! Little Caesar’s pizza is good, but somewhat different to the pizza from home. The James kids love to play with Bryton – especially Maelyn. She likes to sit close to Bryton just to annoy him and I think it’s super cute. When I see him playing with her it makes me excited to see him as a dad to our little girl.
Maelyn picked out some pumpkins for Bryton and I to carve while the children painted cute tiny pumpkins. We don’t really celebrate Halloween to the extent the North Americans do, so we have never carved pumpkins and it was something Bryton really wanted to do before we left. Kyle showed us how to cut the top off the scoop out the insides. I’m not gonna lie, it was pretty gross!! There were a ton of seeds and it was really stringy on the inside. After I got over myself I actually really started to enjoy it. We made a competition out of it between Bryton and I. I had already looked up some pumpkin carving ideas earlier so I knew what I wanted to do. And by no surprise, I won!! We had a lot of fun with the James family. Their kids are psycho – and I can say that because Kyle and Danielle said I could haha. They are really fun to be around though. Jayden and Maelyn love to fight with Bryton and he likes to fight back and sometimes I get scared for him because they are pretty ruthless haha. Lucky he’s got lots of layers on him to keep his bones from breaking hahaha. I’m a horrible wife.
On Tuesday evening we went to do temple baptisms at the Calgary temple. We went with Kyle and Danielle and their 2 oldest kids Landon and Kaitlyn, Uncle Rick and his son Ryan. Grandpa serves in the temple every Tuesday so he was able to come down to baptistry while we were there. It was really special to be doing baptisms with some extended family. We’ve done baptisms in NZ with Bryton’s family and that is always nice. But this was something else. I don’t know what it was but I loved the feeling there. The Calgary temple is beautiful. It is only about 3 years old I think. It is up on a small hill and looks over Calgary. The entrance to the baptistry is separate from the main entrance so we didn’t get to see the rest of the temple. That will be at the top of our list for our next trip.
On Wednesday Aunt Dwan texted me inviting us to Pang Pang for lunch with her and Uncle Brett. This is the best Chinese & Vietnamese place on the planet. Bryton’s dad always talked about it and their Ginger Chicken and when we came over for Grandma’s funeral, it was the first meal we had. He was not lying – it was awesome! So we had ginger chicken, fried rice, chicken chow mein, the grossest egg foo yung I’ve ever had, and the best won ton soup I’ve ever had. The entire time we were there I just knew Bryton’s dad would be totally jealous haha. You know, we really loved the time we got to spend with Aunt Dwan and Uncle Brett. She is SUPER funny. Like actually hilarious and I love it! She has my kind of humour in that she will be honest and laugh about it like it’s a joke but really… Haha. Uncle Brett is naturally quite a quiet person but I appreciated the short conversations we had with him. And I sure enjoyed that subtle jabs he was taking at Bryton. It was hilarious.
That evening we drove out to Okotoks to have dinner with Jeff and Jess and their family. Their children are really quiet, but really sweet at the same time. Baby Cruz was super cute. He was smiling at me most of the night and I don’t even care if it was possibly just gas. I’m taking it! Holding him made me so excited for our baby to come. Especially because he did not cry when I held him which is kinda a big deal because I usually get the opposite reaction from children younger than 15. We ate Mexican when we were there and I’m getting the impression that North American’s really love Mexican food because I’m sure we’ve eaten that more than any other kind of food while on our trip. While we were visiting the family we talked a little bit about Grandma and Grandpa and the awful food stories we all have. Haha. Let’s just say Grandpa Pilling doesn’t know how to get rid of old food. It seems like every family member I’ve talked to has some story to share about old food at Grandpa’s house and that’s kinda terrifying. But I’m still alive and my baby is still kicking inside me so no scary after effects here. We were so glad we got to make a visit out to Jeff and Jess. They have beautiful children and even though they didn’t have much to say, we appreciate getting to know them better.
The last couple of days of our trip will be in the next post. This was waaaay too long.