Friday, September 11, 2015

September Catch Up, Family Adventures, and Challenge Victories

I have had the best of summers and it has continued into the best September. There are so many things I had intended to do as individual posts but they are piling up. There have been four 35 Before 35 challenges completed! I've driven across three provinces, I've hugged my family, and been to a concert. These are exciting times, where do I begin?

First, the victorious completion of Challenge #22. For those unfamiliar with the 35 Before 35 Challenge, the twenty-second challenge was swim in the ocean. As August wrapped up I was fearful that it just wouldn't happen. My window of "warm" Atlantic swimmer chances was quickly closing. However, last Thursday, plans came together. Jenn was free for the beach day at a location near Mahone Bay. She walked the beach. I got in the water. I only took a picture of the ocean and left my phone in the car. Jenn has actual photo proof on her phone.

Friday I began my road trip to my family's place. Saturday morning I crossed into Québec. By supper I was home for a great reunion. The parents were very accommodating to my 30-Day vegetarian challenge. The best part of being home Saturday night, Sunday I was able to witness my sister's baptism!

Mom and Sister introduced me to an amazing used bookstore in the town next to theirs. The place is packed with books, books on shelves, books on carousels, books in child high towers. My first words, "I think I found heaven." The owner responded telling me his theory of a successful bookstore, "it is one in which the books are winning." I think he makes his store a success; he is very sweet. He admired my Doctor Who shirt I was wearing, answered some questions I had about a Terry Pratchett's series the Long Earth, and found a copy of the first book. When I went back the next day to pick up the book he had set aside a Doctor Who book he'd found for me because he remembered I loved the show.

Monday, Sister and I had an adventure just the two of us. We drove to one of the Rideau Canal locks, which is a National Historic Site completing Challenge #23!

We checked out the museum, looked at quaint shops, had the best authentic Chinese food, visited a few more shops, enjoyed homemade ice cream cones all while wearing our ears and horns.

Back in mid August I had ordered a few supplies for our Hal-Con cosplays (updates to come about all the progress coming soon). I had included a mystery bag gift for Sister and had the packaged shipped to my family's place. She waited till I was home to open the big box. It was like Christmas. The mystery items were the cat ears and dragon horns.

Just as we were wrapping up we noticed that the locks were opening to let a boat and group of kyakers through. So we watched that before heading home.

Tuesday was Day 30 of the 30-Day Vegetarian challenge. I can't believe how fast the 30 days went. I discovered a love for more veggies and new ways to cook many of them. Thank you to anyone who gave me advice or a recipe. A huge thank you to Janna who was visiting me during August and willingly ate my vegetarian meals, even the dishes I was trying for the first time. I really had fun with the challenge and even though it is official over I am still eating a mostly vegetarian diet. I expect when I get home I'll probably only have meat once or twice a week. Finishing Day 30 also mean the completion of another challenge (26)!!!
The other exciting thing about Tuesday was it was Sister's first day back to school. I am really proud of her. She's great.

Wednesday was probably our biggest most anticipated adventure. For Christmas Sister was given tickets for her, a friend, and a chaperon to see One Direction in concert.I was the chaperon. I was so worried I would get lost. But I did it, I got the girls to the CTCentre before the doors even opened!

I had only known three of the songs before Wednesday. On the drive to the show I had a crash course in One Direction and being a Directioner. Sister even had a "I heart One Direction" bracelet for me to wear. It worked, I am hooked, I have had the songs stuck in my head for the past two days.

I am so glad I was able to take my sister. Mostly for the bonding time and shared experience. But the was great. I loved our seats. And I would go again.
These really are the best of days.

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