A couple of weeks ago I realized that I hadnâ€™t taken any vacation days in 2011. I have three weeks and over a week of flex time to use so I decided to take some this fall. With Mark playing Kinsmen Football, I canâ€™t really get away or he doesnâ€™t get to practice so instead of getting to the cabin, I stayed in Saskatoon. The plan is to go to the cabin this weekend for Thanksgiving. Arlington Beach does a huge fall/Thanksgiving supper which is great and weâ€™ll eat well out there.
The week started with hanging out with Jared and Kathy Siebert who moved out from the GTA. Having a denominational stooge around is occasionally useful and it will be fun to have Jared, Kathy and their kids in Saskatoon. Somewhere in our conversations with them Jared said that he wanted to clear out some trees around his house so on Monday I went logging. I took over our chainsaw and we cut and cut and cut and we were still cutting the same horrible tree. It had about 50 large branches coming from the ground and I think it was regenerating itself as fast as we were cutting it. When we were about halfway done, Wendy and Kathy came out and said there was a lot more light coming in the bay window (why do people plant trees in front of bay windows?) We also managed to cut down two cedars that were a couple of stories tall. Both went down pretty much as we intended which kind of freaked us out. I honestly figured, Jared, myself, or a tree would be going through a window. In honour of my new skill I am growing a lumberjack beard and am wearing more plaid.
I also managed to chat with Cam Broten. Most of it was off the record but it was also a good discussion on the issues in my own riding. While Cam has been campaigning pretty hard for a while, I havenâ€™t seen any signs of the Saskatchewan Party candidate in my travels. Campaigns matter but I canâ€™t see this riding going to the Saskatchewan Party.
The highlight of Markâ€™s week was practicing with the Saskatoon Hilltops on Thursday night. Mark came home bloodied, bruised, muddy and in a bit of pain but really enjoyed himself. The Hilltops ran them through the same drills they ran with the Hilltop coaches and players giving tips and yelling encouragement. To be honest Mark was relieved. As a 4â€™10â€ receiver, he was at a loss on how to get open against a 5â€™10 defensive back who is taller, stronger, and faster than he is. The most important thing he learned was the intensity that the Hilltops practice with. I remembered how cool it was when a Saskatchewan Blade would come to my hockey practice but actually practicing with the Hilltops on their field was amazing for all the kids.
We are headed out to the cabin on Saturday after Markâ€™s football game in Martinsville. He is done at 3:00 p.m. and I hope to be on the road by 4:00 p.m. and be at Arlington Beach for a late supper time. Lee and Brittney are coming up on Sunday for the big Thanksgiving dinner with family, the Sieberts and about 300 other people. Wendy doesnâ€™t have to cook, I donâ€™t have to do dishes so we all win. I bought Mark a great flashlight and a headlamp this week with the intention that him and I are going to go for a late night hike. If I donâ€™t post here at all next week, there is a chance I was eaten and killed. Check with Wendy. I am back to work on Tuesday. Not that motivated to be back but I have another couple of weeks to take before the end of 2011.