Dave had been planning this bucket list trip for the family to Alberta Canada in the Canadian Rocky Mountains. We spent time in Jasper National Park and Banff National Park. Both are just amazing places. We saw bears for the first 3 days we were in Jasper, 2 of them right on the side of the road! We saw a mother grizzly with her 2 cubs on one of our hikes, very close to us. We had just passed the park ranger with her rifle who was looking for the bears. It was the most beautiful scenery we have ever seen. Dave had an ambitious schedule planned for us and had done a lot of research on the hikes he wanted to take. We saw waterfalls, canyons, glaciers, elk, grizzly bears, black bears, mountain goats, coyotes, and big horn sheep. One thing we hadn't planned for so well was Hannah's feet. It had been a while since she had such rigorous exercise and pounding on her feet. By day 3, she was loudly voicing her displeasure with hiking. By day 4 she was clinging to a bridge on the hike, refusing to go any further. She was limping and crying. Dave began carrying her for much of the difficult terrain on the hikes, usually up the side of the mountains! Hannah didn't really like that, she said it was uncomfortable. I know she have rather walked, but she just physically couldn't do it. I told her that her dad was in such good shape, he needed a bit more of a challenge to raise his heart rate by carrying her-and I was joking about that!
Dave had planned well, with all of our hikes listed as "moderate". I told him he needed to write the author of those many books he read and tell them our definition of moderate was a bit different. Absolutely loved the trip, I describe it as an endless stair master through Christmas (many of the hikes were through pine forests and they smelled wonderful.)
Tomorrow is the start of school! I don't know where the summer went, it always just flies by. Hannah is entering 6th grade this year, and Colby will be in 8th. I was able to get Hannah's information early before we left for Canada so that we could begin preparing her emotionally for the changes for this year. She has a great group of teachers this year. She will be in the inclusion class since she now has an IEP to help her with any special accommodations she needs. Hannah doesn't have an individual aide assigned to her, but she does have a special education teacher and there is a full time aide in her classroom. We don't have our beloved aide Natalie with her this year, and her favorite teacher Mrs. Finger isn't there either. Every time we bring this up Hannah gets upset and cries, so I'm not sure what to expect for tomorrow. I know she will come to know and trust these teachers and new aide, but transition is difficult for her. We went up to her classroom a few weeks ago so she could see where it was and we spoke with her math teacher who was there. On the way out, we went by Mrs. Finger's classroom and Hannah was going from desk to desk crying and trying to find her desk from last year with the smiley face inside. She says she wants to go by and say hello to Mrs. Finger and Natalie tomorrow on her way in, and hopefully she won't get stuck in there! I wish I could be a fly on the wall tomorrow.
Will report in soon! Thanks for still keeping up with us!