We had a wonderful Canada day, filled with Canadian and Swedish family and fun.
The church here has a concession stand that they run at the Canada day festivities, so we worked there for the whole day doing whatever needed to be done, tag-teaming the kids so we could both take part. Some people from the church also helped with the littles, allowing Sean and I to have a bit of a break (at least from kid stuff) which we haven’t had at all since before we moved.
The highlight of the day for the littles was the brand new (less than 24 hours old) fire rescue truck that came and was parked behind our concession stand for a couple of hours. They climbed, sat in the driver’s seat, looked at equipment, and tried on helmets for a long time. Yet another advantage to small town life I guess. The same fire truck in the city would have been swarmed with kids and there would have been a short turn each per child to look in the truck. Here they got to climb, play, and explore until they were done.
After a long day at the park (including jumping castles, birthday cake, music, and all that fun) we went’ home to meet some relatives we had never met before. One of my mom’s cousins was visiting from Sweden with his wife, and we agreed to have them stay with us for a night. Being that we are not fully settled in yet, and that we had a long, full day, I was a bit hesitant to host, but in the end, we were so glad we had. Perolaf and AnnBrit are in their early 50’s, have two daughters, and are wonderful people. I am so glad we got the chance to spend some time with them. Perolaf’s english was quite good, and AnnBrit tried very hard to speak English (certainly better than my Swedish, which consists of “borshski, borshki, borshki” from the Swedish chefs on the muppets.) We enjoyed a wonderful visit, a simple meal of soup and bread, and much laughter.
Both of the Swedes had light saber fights with my little star wars fanatic, and he spent some time showing off his lego collection. India showed AnnBrit every toy in her room, and made them both laugh with her “kiss me on the cheek” trick, where she turns her head to kiss the person on the lips.
Perolaf told me our dog is too skinny because he “eats like a hen, and shits like an elephant.” They also told us about seeing a grizzly on the side of the road near Jasper. When I commented that it’s when you see a grizzly that you are glad you are in your car and not out hiking, Perolaf informed me that they were actually standing on the side of the road taking pictures. It was okay, though, he said, because there were many other people doing the same.
We stayed up late into the night, chatting and laughing, and then Sean and the Swedes took Elijah to see fireworks for the first time. He thought it was fantastic.
It was wonderful for me to have Perolaf and AnnBrit spend time with our family, because I have fond memories of Perolaf’s mom and dad (Britta and Pelle) visiting us when I was a kid. Perolaf, in turn, has memories of my mormor (mom’s mom) visiting Sweden when he was a little boy. I was so glad to be able to close the circle in a little more with another generation of distant family making connections.
There is power to family connection, and I am so glad to have been part of the joy of extended family this week.