Wellspring is moving this Friday (my first day back on shift) to the main building. It’s going to get CRAZY! There will be a lot of new changes all at once. We’re not sure what the food situation will be because we don’t have a proper kitchen on our floor. Our women may have to go downstairs to eat with the rest of the staff/people in the men’s program. Though the move is coming up quickly, there are still a lot of things that have not been organized or worked out. We’ll see what happens!
In other news, I have bought my ticket to Thailand! Shima and I will be going from March 3rd - March 17th. Though it’s only for a couple weeks, I’ll finally be able to go on a trip with my sister.
I have officially given my notice at work. None of the residents know I’m leaving but the staff do. It’ll be hard for me to leave but I’m exciting for the upcoming changes. I have bought my flight back to Vancouver for February 22nd. (And now I cannot touch my Visa for a month!).
The best news is for last: I have a full time, contract job as a tea forager from April 1 - September 30 next year! This was in the works for a while but Bryce wasn’t sure if the funding was going to work out. But now, it’s official! I’m very excited to be in the forest picking leaves and berries every day!
To celebrate, I’m going to drink tea. :)
*This photo shows a lovely surprise from an unknown coworker. (It took me a long time to figure out who wrote it). It made my day. <3
Because everyone loved this photo.
Sometimes, I look like this in the morning.
I’m having a great November. I’m being extremely social and I am spending a lot of time with a lot of my friends! I had a fantastic weekend doing just that which included an adventure to the land of Harry Potter at the Telus World of Science! Though Steven is not as big of a fan, he was very amused with my high level of excitement and was very patient while I picked out the right wands for my Vancouver friends.
Today, I think I am going to slow down the pace and take a ‘me’ day; this will definitely include lots of relaxing with tea and a few TV shows!
Clara’s afternoon class at Wellspring today consisted of making home made body scrubs! With a few simple ingredients, all of the ladies easily made their own to keep or to give as a gift. Here’s how you make the one I made:
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup olive oil
2-4 slices of orange
Cut your oranges into very small pieces or use a blender. Mix it in with the rest of the ingredients. You can use this citrus scrub in two ways: 1. Put it next to your bathroom sink and use it after you wash your hands. 2. Use it in the shower! Mix it around with your hands and apply it all over your body with your hands or a washcloth. Rinse it off completely and pat yourself dry. :)
I’m excited to use this!
Overnight, it snowed about a foot. It’s -17, the snot inside my nose is frozen and I’m COLD. That being said, I think I’m doing pretty well for a Vancouverite. Today was the first day I wore a scarf and I’m still not wearing gloves so I think that’s a good sign. On top of that, I’ve been keeping busy on my days off; this past rotation I spent a lot of time out with friends. This cold will not stop me!
Along with the weather changes, there will be lots of changes at work. The Wellspring program got a 1.3 million dollar grant to rebuild our apartment facility. Therefore, in January, they will be tearing down the current apartment and build a new one for our ladies. We’ve been having lots of issues with the current building so it’s time for a better home! Despite the excitement, it has been very stressful for my manager and for all of the staff. Since our building will be obliterated, this means our women have to temporarily live in the main shelter on the second floor. This has some pros and cons. The pros? The main building is close to the gym/library/meetings; there are enough suites for each woman to have her own room (despite its small size), & there is a GIANT pool table! The cons? the main building is in an area where many of the women used to use/deal drugs and therefore will be exposed to a lot of the addicted individuals who come to the main building for food and shelter. Thus, many of our ladies are worried that this will trigger them to go back to using. This will definitely be challenging for all of us but we’re hoping that this will instead be a kind of test that our women will face and overcome. Another stress is that this news of moving came to us suddenly and things still seem to be very disorganized. Our manager said we won’t be moving until after Christmas but everyone at the main building is preparing for us to move on December 1st. Everyone at Wellspring is stressing out about moving so soon because this means we have to figure out what to pack, what to leave behind, and how to allocate these jobs to staff to make the transition go as smooth a possible. None of us are sure what will happen but we’re leaving it in God’s hands. If we have to move on December 1st, bring it on! We can do this!
p.s. It seems like I like to take photos of berries.
I forgot about these photos. This is what Edmonton looked like the night before it snowed! Shima and I explored the river valley. We saw a cute chipmunk but because I am not satisfied with the photos, I will not post them. :P
MORE EXCITING NEWS!!! Nicole is coming to visit this weekend! I feel like we both need to catch up on A LOT. I just want to sit and knit with her and watch silly TV shows and talk about anything and EVERYTHING. I can’t wait until Friday!
This morning, Shima and I went out to capture magpies and Edmonton’s first snowfall! Hello Winter!
This past Thursday, I took Shima to Elk Island, a national park about 45 minutes east of Edmonton. This was made possible by my lovely manager, Alison, who lent us her awesome Chevrolet Blazer for the duration of Shima’s stay.
The day turned out perfectly; we saw lots of wildlife (but no elk, sadly) and just had a great time getting lost in God’s natural world (which included lots of bison poo!). This was also a great time for Shima and I to catch up and bond over random things throughout the day. We did everything from gasping at adorable animals to loudly singing horrible pop songs. The day ended a lot better than expected when Shima spotted a beautiful baby moose on the side of the highway. Lurching the truck to a stop, we quickly scrambled back to see this beautiful guy munching on some foliage. As amazing as this experience was, I think the big smile on Shima’s face was what made me most happy.
Enjoy the photos!
We saw lots of wildlife at Elk Island inluding a BEAUTIFUL coyote! I can’t get over how beautiful he is. Also, Shima’s sharp eye caught the sighting of a baby moose while we were driving home from Elk Island. He is quite adorable.
In total, we saw: ~140 bison, 7 quails (or partridge or grouse? we’re not sure!), 4 muskrats, 1 red squirrel, 1 beaver, 1 coyote, & 1 baby moose!