Saturday, December 31, 2011

Recap of 2011

Last blog was in April - hmmm, new year's resolution - to become more consistent??

We made the decision to spend Easter weekend in Fredericton with our two eldest daughters who live there. It was a wonderful weekend and Heather came along with us - the only person missing was Ryan (Heather's husband). It was relaxing and so much fun spending time with the granddaughters. Thanks to Kathryn who organized the Easter egg hunt and treasure hunt.

Our beautiful daughter, Heather with Kathryn's little girl, Eden.

Charlotte collecting her eggs with help from Mama.

My sweet family - Easter 2011.

Our summer was fun, fast and full of great memories. It started with Sarah attending Camp Courage in Halifax. It was an incredible week of learning, 'hands on', the careers of policing, firefighting and paramedics. Sarah has a desire to one day be a police officer and this camp really made her aware that this is something she can do. It is a camp dedicated to encouraging young women to pursue these vocations which are still very much male dominated.

Sarah (far left) in her paramedic gear helping at a mock accident, the final day of Camp Courage.

Sarah with her graduating class from Camp Courage. The end of an exhausting but amazing week!

Anna started her summer with a Leadership in Training Camp at Malagash Bible Camp. This then developed into spending 3 awesome weeks as a volunteer at the camp. Malagash has been a significant part of Anna's summer experience and was able to give her time back to the camp volunteering in the kitchen as well as being a junior counsellor. She also had a week at the end of the summer as a camper which she thoroughly enjoyed.

Anna (third from right) and her 'buddies' at Malagash.

Anna and a very special camper.

Every three years the Nickerson clan has a family reunion. At the beginning of August we took over Upper Clements Park cottages and reconnected with each other. It was a fantastic weekend of playing in the park, eating together and relaxing in each other's company. The effort we make to do this every three years is well worth it and helps our children have an awareness of the extended family they are a part of.

Sarah, Anna, Tim C. and Tim N. on the flume - bonding with their 'big brothers'.
The Jamieson crew with 'Grampie' Nickerson.

We spent 2 weeks at our cottage on Harvey Lake in New Brunswick - the weather wasn't the greatest, but we sure enjoyed the time to relax and catch up on our reading lists.
September began full on, Sarah beginning her final year of high school and Anna starting grade 10. Sarah made the high school soccer team and after some cold, hard games they ended up with a bronze medal. Sarah is playing on the girl's hockey team and Anna plays basketball with the girl's senior team. Schedules are full and they keep us running, but it is so much fun to watch them play and cheer them on.

It has been a full year and I look forward to what 2012 holds for us.
Christmas 2011 update and pictures will be posted this weekend.

Friday, April 15, 2011

Spring, Friends & Day Trips

Margaretsville 32 years later.

Last Sunday gave us a beautiful spring day and we decided to do an afternoon adventure after church. We contacted our friends, the Thomsons, who willingly came along for a great afternoon. I remembered when Andrew and I were dating that we had gone to a quaint little village called Margaretsville, and have been requesting a trip back, if only for nostalgia's sake. It's funny, but I recall it being much more romantic 30+ years ago!! We took a geo-cache along to do and it proved to be more difficult than the website said - Judy was the master and discovered it.
Discovering the geo-cache.

We then made our way down to the beach and a couple of waterfalls, breathing in the wonderful salt air. What a relaxing, enjoyable way to spend the afternoon with good friends. Time slipped away quickly, but we decided to take a little detour to Morden, another beautiful spot on the shore with a clear view of Isle of Haute out in the bay. This is also home to the French Cross and after a few photo ops, we headed back to the Valley. We are so very blessed to be within such a short distance to the tranquility and beauty of Nova Scotia's beaches.

A stunning waterfall right on the beach.

Interesting angle!

Margaretsville Beach, Nova Scotia (April 2011)

Looking forward to the next 30 years together!

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Tampa Adventure

After much thought and consideration, we decided as a family to join Andrew at a conference he was speaking at in Tampa, Florida. It didn't take a whole lot of convincing to leave our snowy and cold province and spend some time in a warm spot. As it turns out, it actually hasn't been all that sunny and certainly not tanning weather, but there are times when an escape from the sameness of our days, is necessary. My biggest concern was the girls missing 5 days of school at the beginning of their second semester. They have, however, brought their assignments for the week, and will be working on them today and tomorrow so they will not be too far behind on Monday. They are both excellent students and I have every confidence they will succeed in whatever they choose to do.
Lately, I've been thinking about my role as a wife, a mom, homemaker, ministry assistant, administration assistant and wondering what all this will look like in 5 years.
We are still in the process of raising 2 teenagers which can be exhausting and challenging, but we wouldn't change anything. They are beautiful and amazing girls and as their parents we hope we can fulfill our God-given responsibility to raise them with an eye for beauty, a desire for simplicity and vision to see beyond themselves. So this trip has provided an opportunity for me, as their Mom, to connect with them and to try to chip away at the masks that very often get in the way of seeing the reality of what is going on in their lives. The girls very much live their lives 'in the moment' and there is always the constant communication with friends that is an integral part of who they are. We have not had our cell phones with us and even though we did bring the laptop, there has been a somewhat limited connection with their 'budddies' at home.
Now to give you a glimpse of our trip thus far ~
Anna and her friend Leanne enroute to Tampa!!
Sarah and Anna in front of our hotel - lovin' the palm trees!!
Tuesday morning family trip to the aquarium - awesome!!
Purchased tickets to an NHL game - Tampa Bay vs. Buffalo - so much fun to see this live, cheered on the home team but they ended up losing 7-4 in the end, even experienced the fists flying a couple of times!! I would say highlight of the week.
This is downtown Tampa, at noon, on a weekday. Notice there is no one around - everyone here seems to drive a vehicle wherever they go. We really didn't see anyone walking anywhere - we were definitely the exception and felt rather out of place when we decided to walk.
Wednesday, the girls and I head off to Busch Gardens. Lots of wildlife and roller coasters. Anna, so happy to finally see an elephant for real.
Lots of roller coasters - can you spot the girls? Mama wasn't so brave!!
End of another fun day.

As we wrap up our week together here in Florida, I pause to think about the joy my children have given me over the years. The memories we have made together will always make me happy. Whether it was as simple as a picnic in the park, watching them try out different sports, cheering them on in their achievements in school, giving them the extras as we were able, but most of all loving them unconditionally. My musings go to the next generation that is coming along and hopefully I will be able to cheer them on as they experience the full and abundant life that God has intended for them.