Ontario, Canada Adventures #1: Animals, Donuts, Goals & More

We just got back from our week long family vacation in Ontario, Canada! It was a blast and totally exceeded my expectations! I was going to make this one big post about our entire trip, but after seeing that I took 73 pictures the day before our trip when we went up to the Cities and the day we spent all day in the car, I realized that probably wasn't a wise idea. So today I'm going to talk about mainly these 3 things:

Animals - Donuts - Goals Fulfilled - & More!

First let's talk about Willy. The night before the night before (that's not a typo; I'm just making this really complicated) Canada, we took Willy up to his grandma's for the week.

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He saw his cousins!! I'm sure they had a lot of fun.... During the night they were there, they chased each other behind the couch, and I'm surprised they didn't kill Grandma's cat who hangs out behind there; in the process, I think they knocked a pillow or something clear down the stairs and brought out the drop cord. Dogs.

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When we got home, we* had to pack. I thought I actually did a good job. I think I brought too many nice, school type clothes. I wish I would've brought more athletic clothes. Oh, and I'm so glad I didn't bring all those shoes. Mom wouldn't let me, and I reluctantly listened. She really didn't want me to bring nicer clothes, but I insisted for the pictures. Well, most of the pictures are of me in sweats, hoodies and sliders. Now she can say I told you so. Just do it, Mom. You know you want to.

*I had to pack. I'm good at procrastinating like that.

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Traveling to Canada* selfie!

*Actually, it was to the Twin Cities to see my relatives. It was about a 12 hour drive from our house to our lodge in Canada. We split the drive up in three parts: part one the Twin Cities, 5 hours from our house to there; part two the border, about 4 hours from the Cities to there; part three the lodge, about another 4 hours from the border to there. We stayed at our relatives' house for the night and the next day drove to our lodge, which made for about an 8 hour drive.

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I found the name of the rest area place I was at last summer when I was staying with my grandparents, and we had to pick up Hunter here. It's called Trail's!

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I prayed a lot over this trip, and while there were obstacles (I'll tell you them as I blog more of the week), it turned out really well. God provided. I hope you can see some of that through this travel recap. He's always teaching me things, and I did learn a lot on this trip.

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We ate at Trail's, and I thought the food was okay. I wanted a picture of me drinking my pop because I wanted to document practically everything of this trip since I felt like I didn't do enough for our trip to Florida. I asked Mom to take this picture, and Dad is like, "Are you going to document every little thing?" My answer: "Yes." Duh!

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Hunter didn't want pictures of, like, anything. Finally, I forced him to take this one. Because I figured one day in his future he's going to want to look back and remember that time he was at a rest area called Trail's getting ice cream. That's important stuff to remember, guys. I'm a great sister.... I know.

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The ice cream was my favorite part ;)

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I got my usual picture with this dude.

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Our next stop was Cabela's to pick up bait!

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Then it was up to the Cities!

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We went by the US Bank Stadium, home of the Vikings.

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Good thing we had Dad; we finally made it through the Cities and to my relatives' house. It was so nice catching up, and that was one goal completed!

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My cousins and I went for walks with Grams. We make her do that a lot; read about that here.

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Now the part we've all been waiting for: DONUTS! We stopped at a place called Tobie's the next day as we made our way up to Canada. These were the best donuts I've everrr had.

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This was taken in Minnesota, but these trees are everywhere in Canada. The scenery was beautiful. No more fifty million cornfields!

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Dad let us stop in Eveleth at the United States Hockey Hall of Fame Museum. Hunter had wanted to visit it so badly ever since he knew we'd pass by on our trip up, and I also wanted to because I love hockey.

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These were my favorite things ;)

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We had a great time there, and we got the whole place to ourselves!!

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We continued driving to the border and encountered some storms...

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So fun times. The driving went pretty smoothly if you exclude the time Dad opened a pop as he drove and made it explode. Then he handed it over to Mom as it sprayed everywhere because he was driving. She appreciated that.

Anyway, Border Bob's kind of has a little bit of everything and, as it says, it is the last building in the United States before we reached the border.

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We had prayed that the border would go well, and it did. It exceeded our expectations. But even if it didn't... I had this book to read haha. But this book is really so good. I bought it at the church retreat I went to in March and actually met Philip Yancey. He signed it, too! This book answered so many of my questions about suffering and why God allows it...all that. I know there are many good books about those topics out there, but for me personally, this one set the bar really high.

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This is pretty much what you see in Canada: trees and water. And islands! So there are these trees on little islands out in the middle of all this water like you can see below, and believe it or not, people actually build houses on them and live there.

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There are also tons of rocks and rock piles, which are little piles of rocks on these big cliffs. We saw probably hundreds of those on the way over to our lodge. Dad told Hunter they were from Bigfoot. Dad also said we wouldn't see any jets in Canada. Now what is that in the picture? Oh, just a jet.

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This is a gigantic version of what a rock pile could look like. At the place we stopped, they had little souvenirs, and they had little rock piles you could buy as well as a slip of paper of what they really meant. They had something to do with directions and people recording where to go... I don't remember. That's why we have Google.

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Lots of lakes, rivers, rock piles, trees, and lodges that weren't ours later, we finally made it to ours, got checked in, and yay! Also, we saw a bear on the way up. Right at the beginning of our four hour drive to the lodge, too. It was laying down in grass on the side of the road, and it was clear as day. It was awesome! But then when we turned around it hid in the trees, and we didn't get a good picture.

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Our view. I loved it.

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We got to listen to these planes take off all day and early in the morning. I was woke up way too early though so I didn't care in the morning; I slept right through them. Dad was up at four in the morning!

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Ahhh vacation.

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The view is beautiful. We had a relaxing night. We didn't do much. Hunter and Dad got some of the poles ready. There were two bedrooms each with three beds; Mom and Dad slept in one and Hunter and me in the other. The third bed is like a bunk bed, and we put all of our luggage up there. It worked out really well.

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Above all, that day I learned to trust in God's plan and that only I can control how joyful I am. I can be stressed about the trip and everything that could go wrong, or I could trust that even if something did happen, God would be there to help me through it. I chose to trust Him. And He didn't let me down. Even when I feel let down by God, I am reminded of all the good and that He is working even in the worst of circumstances. And the worst things can be turned into something beautiful if you trust in Him.

Dad was right when he said you feel pretty close to God up there.

Stay tuned for more!!