Blessing upon blessing.  That is how I sum up this summer vacation. 
Launching this trip felt huge.  Huge in the “Wow, this is a crazy (and I just might go crazy) monstrous undertaking!”  I honestly was only hoping for the blessings to outweigh the craziness, as in at least 51% good times, please!  I was blown away.  The blessings were HUGE.
Thank you for your prayers for this trip.  This trip gave recognition that God answers prayer!!! (Thank you Henry & Ev for acknowledging on Facebook how your prayers for our trip were answered, this allowed me to see clearly God’s hand in this blessing!).
I came across this verse today and I feel it fitting to include here.
Proverbs 15:6a “There is treasure in the house of the godly.”
I feel treasure abounding in my life.
Our trip was so amazing in the way we felt at home wherever we went.  There were so many people who surrounded us and loved us on our trip, it was incredible!  We love you all so very much too!!!!
We first spent a week with friends in the Shuswaps at a lakefront house we have rented as a group before.  Our friends loved on us so well: unpacking our stuff when we arrived, doing all the supper cooking, watching our kids, loving our kids.  These are some of the people we are so privileged to do life alongside and it was a rich experience to enjoy vacation together.  We enjoyed calm waters, a bit of waterskiing, paddle-boating (Allison’s favorite), propane campfire, the guys golfing afternoon, the girls boating adventure.  Ryan had a day of tooth-pain that was really bad, but thankfully it subsided for the remainder of our trip. 
From the Shuswaps we went to Radium, a favorite place from Ryan’s childhood.  We soaked in the hotsprings and actually enjoyed a night in a hotel (historically they involve chaos)!!! This felt profound and it was a strange sense that because hotel time was fun time, we had “arrived” as a family.  A neat little blessing.  The next night we had an equally fun night at a hotel in Lethbridge.  We were able to connect with Ryan’s uncle Carl here.
Then we arrived in Swift Current. We only had 2 nights in Swift Current but they were absolutely heart-warming.  I was home.  I was so relaxed to be at my parents’ house (wish they lived closer) and the kids had fun at Grandma and Grandpa’s too.  I was able to have a playdate with my cousin Lindsay and her kids. I had a lovely conversation with my highschool soccer coach who lives just down the street from my parents, reminding me of the joys of my youth! The highlight, though, was the pizza picnic at the park we organized.  Everyone invited came.  Aunts, uncles, cousins, friends – some who it’d been years since I’d seen them.  People came and thanked us for hosting the gathering and then they blessed us with words and prayer and conversation and gifts and love that was just the richness of sharing a simple meal in the park together.  It was an incredibly blessed evening.  At one point my cousin said to me, “this is your party.” I tell you, I felt like an honored guest similar to how I felt at my wedding.  For lack of eloquence, it was so good! (Thanks mom for getting it all organized)
From Swift Current we made our way up to Saskatoon.  Here our friends Brad and Ashley completely catered to us, giving us both their children’s bedrooms.  We enjoyed lovely company and conversation with them and felt so loved on.  We had a wonderful BBQ at the Forestry Farm where we saw some other family as well.  We also enjoyed a morning with my aunt, 2 cousins and their kids.  During this Saskatoon stay I was able to see my University friend Erin, who I annually visit with at McNally Robinson bookstore/coffee shop.  I was also so blessed to reconnect with my friend Amy who I lived with in first year university.  Our recently rekindled friendship was made even sweeter by a visit in person. (Ryan and our family – I stayed home to rest – also enjoyed an excursion with the McKinnon family to Kinsmen Park to take in the family friendly rides!)
Then Camp Oshkidee.  When embarking on this trip I had the feeling that there would be lots of craziness; but at least Oshkidee would have something so good for us.  Little did I know the blessings all along the way and little did I know the blessing of Oshkidee would be simple.  It served as a reminder that God doesn’t need the special place of a camp or a lake to be felt and heard and experienced.  (No, weare the ones who often need those things to help us slow down, take note, and open our eyes and hearts so we can actually hear God when He communicates.)  It was lovely to be alongside other families looking to have fun, conversation, and to grow in faith. The highlights of Oshkidee for me were: 1) One evening the moon was so bright and quite full and it reflected off the lake magnificently.  It was a picture to me of God saying: I am the Light of the day andI am the Light of the darkness. 2) Waterskiing with Ryan one evening with Rayna in the boat.  It was just so good to do something I love in a place I love with people I love dearly, dearly, dearly.  I wrote on Facebook, “Best date ever!” I don’t think I was being dramatic! 3) Being alongside family (my parents and sister and brother-in-law and their kids came too).  There wasn’t a whole lot of room for adult conversation time together, but it was so good to have cousin play-time and Grandma and Grandpa time.  4) Playing late-night games!   5) Reconnecting with friends made last year.
From Oshkidee we ventured back to Saskatoon, because there was certainly not enough time before Oshkidee for all the visits we wanted to fit in.  Also, Ryan popped into the Blind Factory a bit and had a couple games of pickleball.  This time we stayed with Ryan’s Aunt Bonnie, who graciously hosts us so well.  We visited with Ryan’s aunts and uncles and cousins.  It was so lovely to be present with this extended family and Uncle Darryl and Auntie Shelley your prayers for us were so meaningful.  I really wanted to see Ryan’s Grandma Rostek who is 96 and recently broke her leg.  It was a brief 15 minute visit and she is struggling and very aged since last year when we saw her; but, it was absolutely beautiful to be able to bring our family to see her and brighten those 15 minutes for her.  
From Saskatoonwe spent a night with a lifelong friend of Ryan’s, Pam, in Edmontonwho graciously gave us both her room and her son’s.  Then off to the Jasper hot springs (can you tell Ryan loves hot springs?!) and an incredibly scenic and wildlife filled drive through Jasper.  With no plan where to sleep that night we were aiming for Kamloops; but Allison started losing it just before Clearwater.  We pulled into a nice looking hotel and got the last room there!
Then onward home, to figuring out what life looks like for us now that I am finished treatment.
Reflecting on this trip, look at the blessings!!!! If I was working or if Ryan had a ‘normal’ job this vacation would not have been possible.  And to be honest I didn’t even ever feel the “I’m ready to go home,” even after nearly a month!   It was so wonderful to feel so well cared for and to experience such hospitality along the way.  Seeing how our network of support extends way far from our “home-base” but then to be able to return into the arms of those we love in Chilliwack, well that is just something I have trouble properly describing.  It’s a blessing.  Friends afar, friends close-by.  Friends from the past merging with friends from the present and new friends being added to our network! How spectacular!
Thank you for your continued prayer and support.  I am easily overwhelmed these days.  What helps keep that overwhelm away is knowing I have all of you ready to respond to any need we present. Thank you.  Just knowing you are there if we need you is amazing and life-giving.
We have a couple big transitions coming up which we would appreciate prayer for. 
–  Firstly, as I mentioned, I am figuring out what life looks like for me now that treatment is complete.  For the most part I’m feeling fantastic if I’m able to focus on doing one thing at a time (any sort of time crunch or multitasking quickly overwhelms me). So I am still determining how much I can manage and how that translates into different roles for me (ie. Home-duties, Volunteering in the church, extracurricular etc.). 
 –  Secondly, Rayna starts school in Sept.  We are all excited for this; but it will be a big scheduling shift for us.   

– Also, I still want to work on my novel and create space for that (and have God-given inspiration in this work.)  
In no particular order here are some snapshots of our trip!