It is a nice day today. The sun has been shining and the last time I looked it was up to -12C. Ray and I are still adjusting from being in Maui for 10 days with Janice & Max Graber. The weather was perfect while we were there...God is very good - all the time! We got up Monday the 12th of January and drove to Edmonton. We went to West Edmonton Mall (biggest in the world - don't you know). It was very windy and snowing hard. We decided to drive to our hotel in Leduc (where the airport is located and is south of Edmonton) when we spotted a Tony Roma's....yum. We stopped and had a wonderful dinner and then drove to our hotel in a blizzard. No lines were visible on the road with four lanes of traffic. We just hoped everyone would stay in their space! We got to the hotel and got our "stuff" all unloaded. Ray got the car plugged in as we were leaving it parked at the hotel while we were out of the country. The next morning a shuttle took us to the airport and we were off (after sitting for a couple of hours....you all know how that is). We went to Vancouver and had a 5 hour layover - ouch... it turned out to be 6 but we were finally on our way to Maui. We arrived at 10:30PM Maui time and Janice and Max picked us up at the airport....they had been up 22 hours and there was a 4 hour time difference for them (only 3 for us).
We pretty much just fell into bed for our first night. Slept like a baby but were awake and ready to go by 7:30. We had many days of going to the beach in the AM and then shopping, sightseeing, or eating the rest of the time. They did have a Cold Stone Creamery!! Don't you know that my swimsuit shrunk while we were there.... The guys got to play golf 3 times at 3 different courses...what beautiful landscapes ( Kahili, Wailea Emerald and Makena North ). We went on a whale watch trip (and did get very close to some of the 60,000 pound monsters), snorkeling trip (I chickened out and carefully watched over the other 3 as they snorkeled - someone needed to watch them!!) and we did see some whales breeching all the way out of the water on this trip. SUNDAY was the special day - Ed Peterson had planned a surprise renewal of their wedding vows for his and Nancy's 40th anniversary....he had kept this a surprise for almost a year...that must be some kind of record. He provided all the ladies in the group (12 of us) a SPA package - we had a loofa body scrub, soaked in mud, papaya, etc, got in hot pools, cold soaks, sauna, had a 55 minute massage, got our hair fixed and had our makeup applied!! Wow is Mr. Peterson our hero? YES... My first trip to a spa so I was very thankful for his desire to please us all. We had to be at the Chapel at the Grand Wailea at 3:45PM to be ready to SURPRISE Nancy. It was such a beautiful event. Seven other men that Ed knows also became a part of the service after getting on their knees and re proposing to their wives. Shawn (Ed and Nancy's son) performed the ceremony and his wife Cassie was there also. Ed told Nancy right before they walked in that she would either love him or hate him...... you know she just loved him. Her 5 sisters were in attendance (1 from Oregon, 1 from Ohio and 3 from Iowa) and Ed's sister was there from California as well as Ed & Nancy's daughter and her husband - Summer and Zach from down by San Antonio.
Our trip ALMOST seemed anticlimatic after pulling this off.... we had actually visited with Nancy at their hotel on Friday and it was hard to not say anything that would give the event away. She thought we were just there on vacation and it HAPPENED to be at the same time they were there. We also got to visit with them our last day on the island. We had a wonderful lunch and it was fun to catch up with them.
Jan & Max had to fly out on the 22nd at 6:00PM and we did not leave until 10:30PM. It was sad to see them leave us. They left us with a wonderful sleeping pill that we took so we could sleep on the flight to San Francisco. We got in there about 5:30AM and had about a 2 hour layover...ugh Then we took a flight to Seattle/Tacoma and had a 3 hour layover...ugh, ugh
Then we got on a flight that took us to Edmonton and we got in there around 5:25PM. We got through customs quickly and grabbed a shuttle to our hotel (where the car was parked) and started driving to Fairview (and 7 hours later we were home)!! I had on sandles and was surely glad I had a pair of socks in my backpack. It was -44C Saturday morning in Fairview. WE got home around 1:00AM.
It was such a wonderful holiday for us and the company was great.....but it was good to be home too. Our church service was so good Sunday. Ray preached a sermon on forgiveness that he had planned to preach in November but ended up in bed sick. We had an adult man profess his faith in Jesus as Savior and Lord and another adult male baptized....the music was great and I truly worshipped Christ in freedom of spirit...it was a very good day. We had college Bible study in our home on Sunday night so we cooked some soup and made a rhubard cobbler. The boys living with us, Ryan & Shawn, provided a WII and we all got to playing games. I was also working on a large (1000 piece) LION puzzle - it is actually shaped like a lion..thanks to Mert - she loves to bring me hard puzzles. Several of the kids were in Grande Prairie at a Bridal Show so we only had 5 here last night... we had a study on DISTORTIONS of Community....very interesting study.
Ray is at Junior High Basketball practice right now and I hope he is staying awake. He did not sleep last night...not sure what that was about but we may get it checked out.