Saturday, November 14, 2009

Finally a Baby Bump

Our baby bump arrived on November 10th. Just over 17 weeks along in our first pregnancy. I woke up, rolled over onto my back and felt the little thing for the first time. Graham was excited when I put his hand on my belly. He took these photos last night. I wasn't feeling great but there was pressure to get the bump posted!

Today, I am 17 weeks and 5 days. Still not feeling well these days. Better than a month ago though.

Nov. 13, 2009 -Jen's baby bump at 17 weeks and 4 days.

Nov. 13, 2009 -Jen's baby bump at 17 weeks and 4 days.

Nov. 13, 2009 -Jen's baby bump at 17 weeks and 4 days.

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Olympic Fever...-30C with windchill

The Olympic Torch Relay for the Vancouver 2010 Olympics went through Inuvik last evening. The hermit came out of her cave and made her appearance. I wouldn't have missed it even for throwing up. It was great. Cold, but great.
The Inuvik Drummers & Dancers performed as well as Gwich'in jiggers (dancers).
Graham froze his hand to get these photos and the video (video to come), so he gets the credit for that.
Olympic Torch Relay stage

Graham & Jen at Olympic Torch Relay

Inuvialuit Drummers & Dancers perform

Jen with Olympic Flame and frozen eyelashes

Olympic Torch Relay

Thursday, October 22, 2009

We're pregnant!

This is our baby's heartbeat at 14 weeks. First heard at 10 weeks.

Pregnant, happy and oh so sick...still. So, we found out that we were pregnant on August 20th, which was at 5 1/2 weeks. August 25th was my last day in the real world. Starting at 3:30am on the 26th I began throwing up and have not stopped yet. Hearing the heartbeat at 10 weeks was a relief. Very reassuring that everything was still okay. Finally had to officially leave my jobs at the daycare and swimming pool. I will be applying for Sick Leave now.

No belly showing yet. I've lost quite a bit of weight and have had numerous trips to emergency for IVs. With all of this, my spirits are still high. The second appointment to hear the heartbeat was again reassuring. We also heard the whooshing sounds of the baby's movement. Dr.Boronowski told us there was actually a lot of movement. he even let Graham use the doppler on my belly.

Graham has been more than perfect, as usual. Get me apple juice, hold my hair back, clean out my bucket, rub my feet, and many other phrases are often in need of translation as they usually all come out as 'mehhhhhh'...or however you would spell a whiny groan. He has become fluent in the language.

I've lost most of my muscle except for my abs - they get their daily (often many times a day) workout.

So, still happy and not going shack whacky. Time is actually going quickly.

Jen, Graham & ?

The day we found out we were 5 1/2 weeks pregnant.

Sunday, August 9, 2009

12 down, 1 more to go

Raining today and almost 6 degrees. Chance of flurries tomorrow…doesn’t the calendar say August?

I taught Aquafit yesterday morning and got home about 1:00. At 2 a few friends called to see if I wanted to drive to the Yukon border to try to find the migrating caribou. Of course I did you fools! They arrived in about 20 minutes and we were off.

I’d been as far as Tsiigehtchic twice, but never further. You can drive the distance to the border in about 3 ½ hours, but we took our time and stopped to see any wildlife we could find.

We did stop to help change someone’s flat tire. Well, my help involved taking photos.

Richard and Marc Andre changing tire.

Past Tsiigehtchic the scenery almost immediately gets more interesting. Small mountains come into view and you get into some tundra (easier to spot animals).

On Tsiigehtchic ferry.

No telephone poles!

Mountain scenery.

Marc Andre 'helping' the road workers.

Jen at Yukon border.

Anytime you see vehicles pulled over on the Dempster you perk up and assume they see something. It’s usually true. We did see a truck pulled over and saw a small herd of caribou. The people pulled over had walked down the rocky hillside to get a closer look. We were wondering if they realized the caribou kept moving away making them harder for them and us to see…ultra maroons, we thought! Luckily, Richard had binoculars.


More caribou.


BANG!! Oh…oh okay, so they actually wanted to get closer for better aim (not with their camera). They did get one.

Snow still around on these small mountains.

Moving on. We saw some people along the road picking berries, which we looked for on the way home but just found some cranberries not ripe yet for picking. We did see one lone caribou with his big antlers closer than the others had been.


Monsieur Caribou.

Herr Caribou.

BANG!! Not again. No, this time it was our tire that needed changing. So, don’t forget a spare tire or two for the Dempster. We saw a few more caribou while this was happening.

Returning to NWT.

We didn’t go too much further before turning around. Not far along there was a bear fairly close to the road. Being scared of humans, he headed off the other way in an awesome run.

Bear along Dempster Highway.

Another bear was spotted on a hillside. He had caught or was digging for something.

We saw a fox running up a hillside, a rabbit run across the road, lots of ptarmigan (birds), and ground squirrels. All in all, a good tally of wildlife for this trip.

We arrived home, after some interesting conversation, at midnight. Graham had gone out with some friends to watch UFC, but was already home when I came in. We both had fun.

Caribou Forever!


Sunday, July 19, 2009

Monday, June 15, 2009

Graham and I were both off Monday and Tuesday to spend the day with Mom and Dad. We started things off with a wonderful breakfast of homemade crêpes. The produce man was in town so we were able to stock up on fresh fruit. Not that it’s not in the grocery stores here, but he’s fresher and cheaper. (Graham, insert smart comment here.) Chocolate and banana crêpes, blueberry and strawberry crêpes, and kiwi on the side…my mouth is watering now.

Our homemade breakfast of champions

To work off this amazing treat, we set out to walk around the Boot Lake Trail nearby. It was overcast day, but no rain yet. The trail was pretty muddy and flooded in some parts but we made it by. A few detours were needed. Partway through, it did start to rain but, coincidentally, we walked by a makeshift tepee just off the trail. We ducked into that for the few minutes it rained.

Dad, Mom & Jen in tepee

If someone were watching us we may have sounded a little crazy, but with it being bear season we had to keep making noise. Our skills must have worked because we didn’t see any on our walk.

Birds' nest on Boot Lake Trail

They got to see the cemetery. There are very few grave markers made of stone. Simple, wooden crosses make up the majority. It’s not very big since the town hasn’t been around for too long.

Inuvik Cemetery

Cranberry bushes growing in stump

The trail can be walked in under an hour but we took almost three hours. I could embellish on the birds’ nest and ravens that we saw but, honestly, it was because bottles and cans are worth 10 cents a piece and alcohol 25 cents! We couldn’t walk by them – the guilt was too much.

Boot Lake Trail

I’m telling you, one could live off of bottles and cans up here. We’ve made 100’s off of them since February.

Dad & Mom with our loot


Saturday, June 13, 2009

Mom and Dad’s second day here was truly awful. Or so I had thought.

The thing was, I thought that by the end of the day, we had done everything there was to do in this town. It turned out, this wasn't the case.

We started off at the Visitors’ Centre, which gives information about Inuvik, but also has physical objects from the north. Leathers, beadwork, animals, etc.

We got a tour of the Community Greenhouse, which is in the old arena. Garden plots are requested and paid for yearly. The daycare that I work at has a plot so I’ve been able to get my hands dirty in that one. When you have a plot you also have a number of volunteer hours that you must fill. Giving tours is one way to do that. Everything is really grown up in there now.
Community Greenhouse

Dad, Mom & Jen at Community Greenhouse

Dad and Mom at Community Greenhouse

We walked through Aurora College. As is the case with some of the public buildings in Inuvik, you are asked to remove your shoes in the college. Mud and dust is the reason for that.

The pool and arena were next. The curling and skating rinks were being set up for the Inuvik Petroleum Show, which is the biggest ‘show’ all year. Not exactly an exciting event unless you have something to do with petroleum. The town is really clean around that time, so that’s a perk. Mom and Dad were impressed with the pool, which both Graham and I work at. You can see photos of the pool at (it’s called the Inuvik Family Centre).

That evening, Deanna and Dave picked the four of us up to go for a drive along the Dempster Highway. A ‘highway’ that when another vehicle goes by you are left in a thick cloud of dust for half a kilometre. Our first stop was the golf course. Dave showed us the portable greens that you carry with you to each hole when no grass is available. There is a driving range on which you frequently lose the ball you hit to the ravens that swoop down and swipe them. Saves running out to get them yourself I guess.

Jen and Deanna at golf and country club

Dave with golf green

The first wildlife sighting was an owl and the lemming he caught in front of us. I could be lying since I have no photos to prove that part but we did get some of the owl himself.

Owl along Dempster Highway

We pulled over at one creek where a guy was fishing with his dog. Mom giggled nervously when I pointed out what was hooked on his belt. She wished it were a gun, but it was bear spray. It’s hard not to use it on the bugs sometimes along the Dempster.

At another creek we pulled over because Dad spotted a beaver swimming in it. He eventually started to flip up in the water and slap his tail down (the beaver, not Dad), so we took his warning and moved on.

View along Dempster Highway

After going over a few crests we reached the part of the river you need to take a ferry over to get to Tsiigehtchic. Again, it’s pronounced exactly how it’s spelled. ☺

Tsiigehtchic ferry

Another beaver was by the shore here and we got some photos. This is where we turned around as it was around midnight. Notice that no flash was needed for photos…

Beaver in Mackenzie River

Mom and the Mackenzie

Dad took a turn driving back

Now they’d even seen the Dempster. What the heck were we to do the rest of the time?

Will exaggerate more later,


Sunday, July 5, 2009

Mom and Dad Come to Inuvik

Mom and Dad traveled all the way from Lunenburg, Nova Scotia to Inuvik, Northwest Territories. Mom has wanted to do just that since she was in grade five.

They spent a couple of nights in Yellowknife on their way here.

They arrived on Friday, June 12th in the afternoon. Graham picked them up at the airport. They lazed around our apartment until we were finished work at 5:30.

The excitement started that evening with a trip ‘uptown’ to the house that tipped over. Houses are built on pilings here to keep them off of the ground/permafrost. The pilings need to be checked often to make sure they’re sturdy. A few weeks after this happened, the town raised $20 000 for the woman who owns it.


Mom & Dad arrive in Inuvik.

House tipped off of pilings.

Dad, me and Mom.