Thursday, January 29, 2009

Finishing off their house...

Although we haven't been able to help out at Natasha's mom and dad's lately, they have been sending us photos to keep us updated on the progress. It's pretty neat to see how much things have changed since they first moved in, in August 2007, and how much progress has happened since we were last there in January. We can't wait to see it in person when we go to visit in May.

The cupboards and the island were installed the day after we left. Thankfully, the hardwood was all done!

The office has hardwood and is painted but Natasha's mom and dad still need to choose shelves and desks for it to be completely done. This is lower on their list of priorities right now.

Most of the basement is painted the same colour as the upstairs, but this guestroom, which Natasha's parents have designated as ours, is painted Saskatchewan Wheatgrass, a green-y sort of colour. The floor in the basement is polished concrete and a very cool brown colour.

This is the downstairs bathroom colour. It is appropriately titled "Water" and we got to help choose this colour in December. Natasha can't wait to see it in person because it looks so bright and cheerful!

As soon as the granite countertops were installed, Natasha's mom and dad could install taps and the dishwasher and other appliances and MOVE IN!!! They were very excited about this. We just wish we could have been there to help them.

According to Natasha's dad, her mom spends all her time in her new laundry room, which is just off the kitchen! After not having laundry facilities for most of the summer/fall, we think she is just revelling in how easy it is to do laundry again.

The dining room is all ready for use...

...and so is the living room.

The full view of the kitchen. The fridge is in two parts on either side of the cupboards to the right of the picture. The backsplash on the cupboards still need to be installed.

This is the upstairs powder room (with a reflection of Natasha's dad in the mirror). Natasha loves the colour in this room. As you can tell, baseboards still need to be installed.

This is Natasha's parents' bedroom with their new bedroom furniture. The trim around the windows still needs to be put on too. But of course, all of these are things that don't need to happen before you can live in a house. We are so excited for Natasha's parents that they can now live in this house, and as mentioned above, we can't wait to see the (mostly) finished product in person.

Monday, January 19, 2009

A walk down memory lane...

On Sunday, January 18 we took a drive from Banff to just inside the BC border. Natasha wanted to show Dave where she worked the summer after her first year of University. First of all we drove through some beautiful mountain scenery.

Us in front of the beautiful mountain scenery.

Attila's first time in BC. When we drove back into Alberta, the snowplows had cleared all the snow away from in front of this sign, but we decided not to stop and get more pictures.

Starting down memory lane.

This place now seems to be open only in the summer months. It was kind of neat to walk around the deserted place though. Well deserted, except for the people who were filming someone snowboarding off the roof of the chalet. We'll have to come back in the summer sometime. Natasha worked here as a housekeeper for six months and then used her earnings to go to Australia for six weeks!
The cabin where Natasha lived that summer.

The view from the cabin. The train went by often. Eventually Natasha learned to sleep through it. The lake is gorgeous in the summer, when it's not frozen over.

Natasha spent more hours than she cares to remember cleaning rooms in this building and listening to Air Supply's greatest hits. One of her co-workers was addicted to Air Supply. At the bottom right of this picture you can see the doors which were the entrance to the employee kitchen. Natasha doesn't remember cooking a lot of meals here though...

And this is the main hotel, with the gas station in the background. Natasha also cleaned the rooms here. The big windows nearest to the front of the picture are where the pool was (still is???) and it was fun to swim in there after a long day of work. The bar where Natasha (briefly!) became a pool shark is in this building as well.

After our short excursion to BC we
stopped in Lake Louise for lunch.

It was a fun way to end a trip down memory lane.

Monday, January 12, 2009

Attila at 29 weeks, 1 day

These photos were taken right after we returned from an Edmonton Oilers' hockey game. Natasha's cousin's husband, Craig, has season's tickets and kindly gave us a pair. We watched a very exciting game in which Edmonton beat the St Louis Blues 2-1. We really enjoyed the experience and afterwards decided to document Attila after his/her first hockey game!

Monday, January 05, 2009

Laying hardwood

When we finally arrived back in Saskatoon (see previous blog post) we spent the next day helping Natasha's mom and dad lay hardwood in their house. It had to be done by the day after we left so that their kitchen could be installed.

Natasha's mom and dad had already done a lot of work.

And Natasha's dad was tired.

And no wonder -- laying hardwood is an intense process. First the old floor has to be vacuumed free of dust and wood chips so that the new floor won't squeak. That was Natasha's job.

Then the proper piece of hardwood needs to
be chosen. That was Natasha's mom's job.

Then you have to put glue on the hardwood...

...flip it over, and bang it into place with a hammer
so there aren't cracks between the boards.

Then you need to staple the new piece of hardwood into place. Dave and Natasha's dad worked together on this.

And then you move on to the next piece of hardwood. It was a long process and we only participated in it for one day. Natasha's mom and dad had already done five days work by the time we got there. We were glad that we were able to stay long enough to help them finish the big room at least.

Natasha's dad was happy to have
help. And to be done!

Natasha's mom likes vacuuming her new floor!

All ready for the kitchen installation.

The two trailers where Natasha's parents lived this summer. Boy, were they glad they weren't trying to survive winter here!

Sunday, January 04, 2009

December in Ontario

For some reason when we are in Ontario we can't seem to remember to take any pictures! On December 26 we flew from Saskatoon to Toronto. We stayed for a week and visited with a lot of people. We got to celebrate an evening of Channukah with Dave's parents. We celebrated Christmas with Natasha's cousins and aunts. We had a very fun evening with Nolan, Margaret, Zoe, Thea and Kira. Our Waterloo North care group completely surprised us by turning a casual get together into a baby shower. Thank you so much you guys; what a wonderful evening. Natasha and Janice had a pedicure while Dave and his sister, Sarah, hung out with Lily, Willem and Tessa. We got to meet Karen and Andrew's son, Caleb, and got some firsthand stories of having a newborn to 3 month old. Thanks for all the excellent advice Karen and Andrew :) We were guests at a musical put on by Dave's niece, Lily. We had supper with Dan and Lisa and watched the last ever Royal Canadian Air Farce show. And we spent most evenings hanging out in our pjs with Tim and Janice and talking about everything from kid's birthday parties to life insurance and the whole spectrum in between.

It was a really good week and we're only sorry we couldn't see everyone we wanted to. Our trip back was less than ideal as we flew from Toronto to Ottawa only to be told our flight to Saskatoon was cancelled. The plane's heating system malfunctioned and would not stop blowing hot air. Thankfully, Dave's aunt and uncle live in Ottawa so we got in a short, very unexpected visit with them.

The next morning we flew back to Toronto, stayed there all day, and flew back to Saskatoon around 4pm. The only good thing about this 30-hour journey was that for our flight from Ottawa-Toronto-Saskatoon we were booked first class so we had excellent seats, excellent food and could hang out in the Maple Leaf lounge, where there was access to more excellent food and free wireless. Dave got A LOT of work done on a paper he had due and Natasha read a couple of books and enjoyed plenty of the snacks!

Finally, thankfully, we made it back to Saskatoon though and we are very glad that we aren't flying anywhere for at least six months!
Lily after performing her musical for us.
Tessa decided not to spend the full night at her friend's house on New Year's Eve and made it home just in time to ring in 2009 with us. This is us about three minutes into 2009!