Wednesday, August 14, 2013

Lake Days

This weekend was my idea of a good time. Lake Days. There isn't much in this world that makes me happier than lake days - whether that's to rest and rest or to rest and hang out with people - I like it both ways. 

Saturday was a BBQ day at Alouette Lake in Maple Ridge at Golden Ears Park. A group of people from our church had organized it as they do every year and we were keen to join. Especially as the organizing group was Philipino! That means fun people and BBQ skewers in abundance. It was AWESOME. 

Filipinas are so fun. I love how they do photos - two girls decide to take a photo together, before the picture gets taken another girl walks by and they invite her in, then they start calling for every female in the area to be in the photo. Next thing you know you have a photo of like 20 people happening. It happens at every philipino gathering I go to. I LOVE it. 

My home stay student Ana came with us as well and Irene and her student Miyo. It was such a perfect time - sun, water, fun. I floated for a while with friends in tandem - we hooked our rafts together and floated back and forth across the swimming area. We later all played games on the grass. My team "Group 2" won - woo! Also I won for "most enthusiastic player" - awesome. The day flew by in the best way possible. 

[Classic Philipino picture posing]

Then with the women involved in a friends wedding we went away to a cabin overnight - it was a perfect time to celebrate someone I love and get to keep resting! We stayed at Pitt Lake Wilderness Cabins and while rustic, the place was gorgeous. The lake was lovely, though low - only a foot or so at times. The ladies were great and it was a good time. A very small group of us were celebrating Ereka - Ereka is one of the campus ministers at church and is also a dear friend. I met her when she first came to her church and while she is now a friend to all (hundreds, thousands, it would seem) I like to claim that I was one of her first friends! There were a few of us that met her that first sunday and had a great connection with her right away. It helped that I was in Campus Ministry so I got to go make time to go see her and build that friendship as part of work - and now she's in Campus Ministry and we've got to talk about that a lot and it's super fun. Ereka is a hardworking, loving friend - she always looks for those on the outside and draws them in. She finds people where they are and draws them closer to Christ. I would hate to do church without Ereka. 
[Pitt Lake is gorgeous]

[The boat rides there and back, with Lou our boat guide]

[Ereka and I / Girls resting on a dock]
[Diana, Irene, Ereka, Deve and Maan all looking gorgeous in the sunset]
[Playing fetch with buddy, Paul would be so proud / Ereka and the China Dolls]

[Shots from around the cabin]
[I love this shot because that's less than a foot of water I'm in - it just barely covered my body]

{I heart this photo because Arlene has been a wonderful friend of mine since I first started coming to this church in January 2006. She has supported me in ministry, in life and in so many other ways. She makes me laugh and is always honest. I love spending time with her - her authenticity is refreshing and her enjoyment of life is contagious. Also this picture is rad}

[The girls heading back on the boat]

[Another of the girls on the boat - LOVE how this shot turned out]

I left the girls early to take the boat back and meet up with Paul and our friends the Papali's. It was Prakash's birthday so Kathleen arranged for us to spend the day at the water - Kash loves to fish and him and Paul love to hang out. So it was perfect. We were out on the dock fishing from 8am to 2pm - the boys were in heaven. Kathleen and I alternatively chatted and rested - I napped on and off laying on the dock for almost 2 hours. It was so very lovely. And it was gorgeous there - seriously, Pitt Lake is stunning. 
[From the boat I could see Kash and Paul already fishing with kathleen resting near them]

[These guys were so happy - fishing from 8am to 2pm!]

[Kathleen and I, trying to keep warm in the morning chill]

[Us girls tried our hand at it - also it got nice and hot later!]

[We found some marshland and small rivers to fish in after the lake]

[While the boys fished, we played Skip-Bo on the side of the road]

[Paul and Prakash went exploring]

After our outside part of the day was over we headed back to the Papali's for skewers and slurpees. I got to drive back with Kathleen and we got to keep talking - I love having friendships that have lasted as long as ours has - and that are real and deep. We have earned our friendship - not shying away from hard moments and being willing to change and grow together. I'm thankful for friends like Kathleen, and like Prakash. When we got back to the house and were eating we got to do the birthday game and have Kash tell us highlights from the past year and hopes for the future year. Then we enjoyed a couple games of Pandemic - I really enjoy this game! The four of us are used to playing normal competitive games that pit us against each other - pandemic is about working together, and that is fun for us to do!

[1 win for us, 1 win for the board]

Then it was 7 and time to head home - there were lunches to make - dinners to prep for - AND there were apples to use up. I noticed when we got home that there were quite a few fruit flies starting to congregate near the apples - the apples were still ok but not for much longer. Enter plan "baking for the win". 

While I was peeling the apples I put a few scrapes and a splash of sangria into a wine glass with saranwrap on top to make a fruit fly catcher (it totally worked there are like 40 dead fruit flies in there now]. I also cut up 7 apples for one of my favorite apple recipes. I made two batches of Echoes of Laughter's Apple Brownies

It's easy to whip up quickly - bakes in under an hour - and my roommates were ecstatic when I pulled it out. It made the house smell AWESOME while it baked and then tasted great also. Over the next two nights we polished off a whole one - and still have 3/4's of one left for snacking on this week. So good. 

And that, my friends, was my weekend. Absolutely lovely. 

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