And that is it. The end of another summer of Survive & Thrive trips. It’s hard to believe, but we’re back in Calgary (although not for long! More on that later!) and ready for some time routine and time at home. The trip in a nutshell:
– Logisitcally crazy.
– Incredibly fun.
– Majorly meaningful.
– Worth all the work.
– Met amazing people, saw them achieve more than they thought they could.
It all started with a looong roadtrip. Like, the usual 10 or so hours it generally takes to get from Calgary to Vancouver turned into about 17 hours. Sadly, there was a tour bus that rolled over on the main highway (1) and we waited about an hour before we were turned around to take an alternate route. This was after we thought we’d wait it out a bit and sat perched above the highway near Merritt, BC to see if they would open the road sooner. Turns out it wouldn’t open until midnight or 1 am, so we took another highway, only to wait in another hour long line because there was a head-on collision on the road. Scary stuff on the way out; we’re so thankful we were protected as we were near the front closet to both accidents. It was a long day and we crashed happily and sleepily on my sister- and brother-in-law’s futon, greeted by smiling faces and the promise of some time with both of them before the trip took off the next day.
(pre-trip prep at home!)
I woke up early, refreshed and eager for the day, and slipped out for a morning run and workout in North Vancouver. There are so many trails to explore and they just pop out of every neighborhood, so I followed one and wound up in a park with some stairs. About a 30 min workout total ensued:
We had a great morning hanging out with Cath and then meeting Dave for lunch – sushi (of course!) and then picked up our first two participants from downtown before heading to the ferry. From there, it was a long day to get to Quadra Island – 2 ferries, 2 islands, a big unload of dry food and gear and bed! Saturday Mikey and I picked our nutritionist-cook-yoga teacher (and now good friend!), Casey, up from the airport in Campbell River and got to work buying all the fresh food. Wowsa – tons of work on the front end but so worth it in the end. Later it was all about the food prep with the girls back at camp before meeting 2 more friends and the skippers, Ben and Tom, at Camp Homewood!
And the rest of the trip? Well, once everyone arrived Sunday we were off and running – more food prep in the kitchen with Casey, Cora and I (what a fun time full of laughs!), row boat practice for the group in the rain and a sailing lesson for us all from Ben, introductions and gear handouts, getting-to-know-you circles and bed time. The trip was off and running! And we were happy to be there once again in such a beautiful part of the world going sailing and adventuring. I slipped in one last morning workout before taking the week off (and eating lots of s’mores and enjoying every bite!) and we were off.
Mikey’s movie shows the highs of the trip, but I will say that this trip held, overall, our most physically limited trip due to people’s cancers (post- and while on-treatment), and everyone did incredible! We had the highest number of people cliff jump as compared to any trip, we watched people’s body confidence grow as the week went on, people overcame fatigue and energy trials to live it up and the group encouragement and help was unlike what you see day to day in “normal life.” This week was a gift, and to hear people say they felt “more alive than they have in ages” brought so much joy to us and is a big part of why we will keep running these trips, despite the work and obstacles and low moments that come preceding most trips (that’s life! 2 people dropped out unfortunately right before the trip, the travel was crazy, the work load was high, but the pay-off? MORE than worth it). Here are a few picture highlights and check out Mikey’s short video of the experience below!
Homemade Portabello mushroom sauce over gluten free noodles with a caesar salad for some good ‘ol comfort food that was also nutritious.
Asian noodle salad for lunch – delish!
Our boat (“Ohhh YEAH”)!
Everyone helped with the loading and unloading each day!
Squats on the boat! We did burpees and planks and push ups – Burpees on the Boat with Babes! 😉 I, of course, was thrilled.
Morning tai chi with our awesome psychologist, outdoors-woman, friend and all-around wonderful woman, Maureen.
I love this man! We complement each other in trips and in life so well (and gotta love Jess’ awesome shirt in the background!). So grateful to be able to do this work and live this life together.
…I promise Rachael, Cora and I are having fun. Really. 😉
It was a great time away. What a true gift! I’ll let the movie do the rest. It’s almost back to normal for us around here and I’m pumped to be back into the gym, blogging regularly, and getting back into routine. I’m so grateful to embrace these wild and busy moments in life and catch up on sleep later – there will be a time when life will change and I know I’ll look back being thankful to have lived in those moments.
Catch me up – what’s new with you?! I’ve been out of the loop and am slowly catching up. 🙂 Also, have you been cliff jumping before? Would you try it if you haven’t?
Take every opportunity to live well & be well, friends!