Tuesday, April 24, 2012


Well we're back home after a trip to Saskatchewan for my grandmother's 90th birthday. I always joke that I wish I had family in some place more glamourous than Saskatchewan. You know, somewhere with palm trees and a beach? But alas, all my trips to visit family take me to the flat and dry prairies. The weather was cr-azy. 3 degrees when we arrived and 25 degrees when we left, and everything was pretty dry. Still, spending hours driving across the flat landscape I was reminded how beautiful it can be. The sky is just. so. big. And the meteorologist in me was psyched that we got at least one thunderstorm.

There's also something about going 'home'. Though I've never lived there, both my parents are from towns two hours apart in southern Saskatchewan (Assiniboia and Swift Current). My dad comes from a pretty big family, and it's strange to be some place where you're related to so many people. On the flight over a couple struck up a conversation with us, and upon hearing that we were Gloecklers wanted to know if we knew Dave Gloeckler. Yup, that's my uncle. Coming from the coast for summers when I was a kid, I loved that feeling of being swallowed up by this huge family. So many aunts and uncles, and you were just another one of the cousins. I think a lot about how different family will be for H, who only has one uncle.

It was great traveling with H with both my mom and dad. I had a lot of help, although not when I needed it at night. The boy was amazing every day. Seriously never cried even during the long travel days and hours in the car. But come night time he was not a happy camper, and of course that's when I was on my own. I came home pretty exhausted, but so glad that we made the effort to go. H got to see both great grandmas, one for the first time.

Unlce Dave's house - a lot of stuffed animals
The windmills at Cousin Wayne's farm
Meeting his Great Grandma
My grandma Ruth has dementia and no longer remembers who we are. But sitting there with her as she was chuckling to herself at jokes only she could only hear, threatening to knock my uncle around when he got out of line, it still felt like I got to see my grandma. I wasn't sure if the disease would have left anything of who she really was. And when H reached out to her and she whispered 'want to come to me' and we helped her hold him on her lap, I was so glad we'd made this meeting happen.

I also found this picture of my Grandma Susan and Grandpa Cec when they were young. Don't they look so glamourous? Grandma Susan turned 90 this past Friday and this was the second time H had a chance to visit her. She is amazing. Though she has had a lot of health problems she still lives in her own home and we had to fight with her to sit down and stop trying to take care of us. She would even pick up H (a very heavy 18 lbs) and carry him into the living room, plop him on her lap and keep him entertained for a long time. And ask anyone, he is one wriggly little boy. I think babies really are magic.


Bec Shulba said...

babies ARE magic when it comes to the elderly - i love it. and those "stuffed animals" were a little scarier than the ones we have around here. haha.

theRachel said...

Thanks for sharing your thoughts on SK family - I feel similarly when I go back to my Dad's hometown, as he is from a family of 10.