09 July 2015

Day of Rodeo Fun

Since we've moved to Calgary and saw the sign "Home of the Calgary Stampede," I've been thinking we should go. We should experience it, at least once. Calista even knows what it is, because in her ABCs of Canada book, letter C is "for Calgary Stampede, days of rodeo fun." So this year we went.
Waiting for the train.
We took the train, and then walked the rest of the way when the train was way too full to fit a stroller. While on our walk, Craig fell asleep. Poor kiddo, he's folded in half!
Good thing he's strapped in!

When we got inside, the first thing we found was the stage show: My Little Ponies: Equestria Girls. Calista (who hates if I sing, "My little pony, funny bologna.....") wanted to watch it, so we let her join the gaggle of girls standing enthralled at the edge of the stage.
Following the show, the girl who played the lead (Twilight Sparkle, for those keeping track at home), gave little "pony ears" and got her picture taken with every little girl who stood in line.
Including Calista, obviously.
Craig got to try them on, too, once he woke up from his nap.

Next up, lunch on the lawn followed by a trip to the Agricultural Building.
And dressed up as a fire fighter, because we can.
We spent nearly all the afternoon in this section of things, seeing all sorts of animals, including horses,
These ones drove around the hearse from the 1870's
cows, sheep,
chickens, dogs herding ducks, and a llama.
It was actually really cool. I took this picture of Calista with the llama, and then the llama's handler said, "Come here," picked her up, and let me take a picture of her right next to the llama.
So awesome.
Craig's favorites were the horses ("horseys!") but he liked all the animals.
And dancing. Always dancing.

Also, just for my sister,
This is a picture of Kaillie Humphries, a two-time Olympic Gold Medalist in bobsleigh, being taught how to blacksmith by her sister, who is actually a blacksmith.

Then we headed across the grounds a bit to see Little Ray's Reptile show. It was awesome.
The animals are all former pets who got too big for their owners. I'm not sure who would want a crocodile as a pet, but...
Fiona (the Caiman) sure is pretty.

When we went to leave the reptile show, we realized we'd missed out on a pretty decent summer storm.
Hail and massive amounts of rain left little rivers running through the Stampede grounds and caused weather delays on a couple of events.
We missed it, though, and grabbed some food and headed back to the Agricultural side.
We caught the end of the Heavy Horse Show and then watched as much of the Stock Dog World Championships as our kids would let us.
Calista and Craig were fascinated with it for a while, Craig happily pointing out the sheep ("Animals!") and Calista hoping with the rest of the audience that those stinkin' sheep would just get into that dang pen already! ("Yay! That dog did it! Yay!" or "Oh no, he's going to run out of time!")

After an hour and a half of stock dogs, our kiddos were about done and we headed home, and the kiddos went straight to bed. It was a long and fun day!

04 July 2015

The True North Strong and Free

Happy Canada Day!
As always, we headed down to Raymond. After all, it's basically the second most important holiday ever. And, like the rest of western North America, it was hot the week we were there. But, happily, not quite as hot as was originally forecasted. Still, lots of sunblock, shorts, and sandals.
The hot weather did mean when we pulled into Lethbridge earlier than we planned, kitty in tow, and the people set to watch her for a week weren't home yet, we had to figure out what to do with her for a bit. And keeping her in the car was not an option.
So we found a park, put her on a leash, and let her wander a bit instead.
Calista loved following the cat around, and no one got too overheated, so success!

On the Monday prior to Canada Day, we headed to the pool.
Calista loved it...
Craig tolerated it, as long as he wasn't ever too deep in the water. Otherwise he got mad at us.
He liked the baby slide, though, so progress!

Tuesday we headed into Lethbridge to help Maria with a little bit of shopping for the next day, take a walk around the lake, and, of course, eat some sushi.
Henderson Lake (on the floating dock).
Craig fell asleep in the car on the way to lunch, so Kyler spent part of his time eating sushi, with his right hand, while holding a baby.
Considering Kyler's left-handed, it was surprisingly successful.
What a good daddy he is!
When Craig did wake up, he enjoyed his sushi (and chopsticks).

And, then, on Wednesday, we had Canada Day.
Craig started to jump instead of smile.
The kiddos spent a little bit of time with Gizmo prior to the parade.
They only tortured him a little...

Best part of the day for Calista: lots of cousins to play with, with candy from the parade being a close second.

She was really good about not running too far into the street,
so we didn't fear she was going to get trampled by a horse (like we did her cousin when she was Calista's age).

Best part for Craig: the fireworks, with seeing the horses at the parade being second place.
He happily sat in his stroller the whole parade, watching and occasionally pointing out candy that the older cousins had missed.

Craig also got to stay up and watch fireworks, mostly because he refused to sleep. But he loved them, repeating "Whee!" and "Up high!" over and over.

All in all, not too bad of a week, in spite of the heat. Happy Canada Day, and Happy Independence Day, too!
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