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greenfield with a view of mountain with snow

Better late than never! I like year in review posts, can’t you tell? This one though is my personal one, the one I really like to take my time on and reflect back to the year that has passed. This post usually takes me a few days to write, I go through all my pictures and reminisce, then decided what to post.

This year we didn’t take a large trip, like the one to San Francisco and Anaheim in 2009. We traveled around our province and our neighboring ones, which only reminded us how lucky we are to live in such an amazing country.

This I desperately try to tell myself as I watch the snow pile up to my windows.

Looking back at pictures like the one above remind me that our summers are worth it.

We finally, after years of thinking about it, went and visited our longtime friends in Christina Lake. Erin and Sheldon up and sold their house, changed their lifestyle from “working for the man” to “owners of a campground” in a beautiful lake town.

Mom with her kids in the big signage of British Columbia

What an amazing lake, warm water, sandy beaches with a stunning mountain view. Only in Canada can you find this!

view of lake with a stunning mountain view

There is also a beautiful nature preserve that we visited on a slightly rainy day.

Mom and her kids sitting with the background of big tree logs

And we were lucky enough that two other couples we know, girls I went to high school with and have known for, oh too long now, were there as well the same week.

We had a lovely dinner one night, catching up, watching the kids run around like crazed animals and drinking far too much wine from the amazing surrounding wineries that can be found in Southern BC.

men and women at the kitchen area preparing dishes

Oh! The wonderful snowfall of May Long. Not only that, but the freezing cold frost that killed or damaged a lot of my plants.

Yes, that is a kiddie pool covering my planters. We were desperate.

I am still not sure if I learned any lessons from this, as in wait past May Long to plant. It’s just that I am so impatient come that time of year!

kiddie pool covering the planter

My delphiniums took over this side of the yard and I was pleased.

delphiniums with flowers on the side of the fence

We took a family trip to Banff to celebrate my Dad’s 65th birthday and his retirement.

group photo of the family in the pool area

I stuffed my fear of heights way back into my gullet and went on the gondola with Mike and the kids.

I still have nightmares.

two kids riding the cable car

I also met Val

close up photo of two women inside the hall

Kevin and his lovely wife…(then later his lovely daughters)…

group picture of man wearing black in the middle of two women during an event

..and Liane, all people in the “internet world” that I had known for a while then met in real life. Which is a big thing for me, I rather like just being a hermit.

two women inside the event hall near the door

I judged the Downtown Chili Cook-off, another big step for me which included recording a soundbite for CBC radio with Liane –silently screaming inside the whole time– , standing in front of a whole bunch of people and having them look at me –again with the silent screaming– and generally pushing my comfort boundaries to the limit.

And I had a blast. Which tells me to push my boundaries a lot more often.

group photo in the booth of L2 Grill, two women wearing white dresses and two man wearing red and black on their sides

My longtime friend from Australia came for a visit with her absolutely gorgeous family. We haven’t seen each other in years and never met each others children, it’s been that long, so this was wonderful. With some hilarious results.

And I wanted to steal her baby.

But it’s ok, we’re friends.

a baby wearing orange shirt, sleeping at her mother's arms

I had my first article published in a magazine, ironically nothing to do with food, but children’s books. I had 4 published in all this year, but no longer write for the magazine, which relieved a lot of stress for me. I miss the thrill of writing for a magazine, but I don’t have the time. It was a major source of stress for me and as much as I love looking at the articles I wrote, I am so glad it’s done.

article contributors in a magazine

Add in a lovely summer of splashparks with the kids, playdates with friends, a wonderful Christmas out at my parents acreage and I can only hope 2011 is as wonderful!

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Karlynn Johnston

I’m a busy mom of two, wife & cookbook author who loves creating fast, fresh meals for my little family on the Canadian prairies. Karlynn Facts: I'm allergic to broccoli. I've never met a cocktail that I didn't like. I would rather burn down my house than clean it. Most of all, I love helping YOU get dinner ready because there's nothing more important than connecting with our loved ones around the dinner table!

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  1. Karlynn says

    HA at the “finally” Valerie, I know, I procrastinate. This is the hard one, I am always fretting whether I forgot something. Which I am sure I did, but the highlights are the highlights.

    Was it really after May long? I just remember frantically covering it all up and cursing. A lot.

    It WAS a year of reconnecting, however, you noticed that before I did!

  2. A Canadian Foodie says

    What an incredible year. I appreciate you FINALLY doing this (double grin) as I have been looking so forward to it. What lovely friends and family you have. That is absolutely how to spend one’s life when the children are young. Oh – the memories of those good times will become a part of their foundation forever. Good MOMMY! XOXO I took Early Childhood Education just to be a good mom. Then I got divorced and actually had to put it to practice in a real school. Oh, the greatest of ironies! Parenting is so important and such a precious and fleeting time in one’s life – but I know it seems to drag on forever some days! I love the BC vacation and then the friend from Australian. It was really a year of connecting and reconnecting for you! We are so luck to have such gorgeous land in Canada to holiday in. I completely agree with you…. and I recall that snow in May. My heart broke. It was the weekend AFTER the long weekend – and as the weather had been so cold – I DID hesitate, and then finally, on the 28th – planted all the bedding plants. My dear and precious tomatoes. It snowed that very night. All lived and thrived actually – but with the summer we had – no sun, I got few red tomatoes. So few ripened.
    It has been a similar year of connecting for me, too – as you know having read my year in review post. I love that. I am so happy that I met you and your beautiful children and wonderful hubby! We are clear across the city from one another – but I can “read” you often, and we will connect throughout the year – FOR SURE. Like you, I do wonder what 2011 holds in store. I am trying to Make somethings Happen. But, we shall see where we go an what we do and who we meet.
    How exciting!
    Oh – and your publishing and writing! BRAVO!
    That is not easy and the deadlines can be tenacious. Good for you. I don’t know how you did it with little ones. I have done some very intense writing and editing in my time and it can be like giving birth to a baby. SO painful – so joyous (and do you ever get back what you put in? hahahha)

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