Wednesday, September 3, 2014

An Island Weekend

I am from a wonderful Island called Vancouver Island. I had the pleasure of growing up in Port Alberni, right in the center of the Island. It was a great place to grow up and remains a wonderful place to visit. This trip the weather wasn't as glorious as I'd hoped but it was still a lovely time. Our main purpose was to see our friends Dustin & Anne get married, and after that we added a visit to the Salmon Fest, lots of time with family, Sproat Lake time and a canoe trip to Newcastle Island. It was a short trip but oh so sweet. 

It was a real joy to be there for Anne & Dustin's wedding. I've known Dustin's family my whole life (though mostly remember Dustin as a kid running around the yard and such) and loved getting the chance to know him as an adult once he moved to Vancouver. You will never meet another person like Dustin. I met Anne through my friend Lyndsay - originally Anne was one of her campers and poor Anne was the "lucky first aid attendant" who had to help me at Anvil Island when a week after back surgery I danced a bit to hard and needed some first aid attention. She was very patient with me! These two are beautiful to watch and obviously in love. It was so great to see them surrounded by their loved ones and finally get to be married! Every time I saw Dustin during the reception he was bowled over by the fact that "I have a wife now!" It was very sweet. Congrats you two! I look forward to our friendship in the future!

The very lovely couple and their first married kiss

Me and my sweet love

Sam, myself and Christina - loved hanging out with these ladies!

On top of there being a group of Vancouver folk at the wedding, there was also a group of people (Dustin's siblings and cousins) that I went to youth group with - it was such a delight to see them all!

I got to see Mary who was a friend a few years younger in youth group AND the sister of one of my best friends (Gwyn)  from that time period (and continuing into adulthood). 

Mary, myself and Leisha (A PA friend who also lived in Vancouver my first year here!)

And that was the wedding! It was romantic and beautiful, full of fun and lots of dancing! Getting to "cut up a rug" with Paul, whirling and twirling me around the dance floor was a definite highlight!

We stayed with my Aunt and Uncle in PA. They are so hospitable and welcoming - it feels like home to be there and I love it. 
My Aunt is a definite substitute mom for me and I'm so thankful for her!

I'm so thankful for my Aunt. God knew that I would need her and she has stepped up to that call willingly and so well. Auntie Sandy has been so supportive and loving and constant in my life. I pray that everyone would have an aunt like this and that as my nephews grow up I would be able to be even half the aunt she is!
Salmon Fest Dinner!

An afternoon at Sproat Lake! Thanks Judy and Mike!

Myself and Judy (shortly after Paul threw me in the lake 4 times)

And then we were off to Nanaimo for a canoe ride to Newcastle - it was lovely. I've done this twice before but it was Paul's first time!

We did a lot of exploring in the water - it wasn't even cold!

Paul: "Can you tell I'm making fun of yoga people?"

Our aqua shoes made exploring so awesome!

All in all it was a restful weekend - we managed to hit up my home church, have some quality time with my Dad, spend a ferry ride home with the Bride & Groom and end up home not too terribly late on the Monday. Thanks Anne & Dustin for the wonderful excuse for an island visit!!
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