One Season in Two Weeks

Happy Labour Day, friends! I hope everyone reading this is fortunate enough to get a long weekend. It’s now September and summer activities are starting to wind down. If you’re like me, you’ve done all your summer living in the last two weeks!

Let me explain myself. We had a decent-ish June, but July was cool, rainy and windy, for the most part. Most of August was nice and summery, but I was too busy to enjoy much of it.

Come mid-August, I was out of here, on my first “big” roadtrip by myself. I’ve always travelled by myself and prefer it because I can do what I want, when I want and don’t have to wait around for anyone else, or get stuck doing something I don’t want to for half a day (in case you haven’t learned by now: I’m pretty stubborn and obstinate!). My first solo trip was to Paris in 2009 and I’ve been hooked ever since! However, I’ve only been driving for not even 2 years, and I was a pretty nervous driver in my first year. Last summer, I finally decided to be a big girl and drive on the highway all my myself to Saskatoon for a weekend.

As you can see, I didn’t die.

Then, my plan for the spring was to visit as many National and Provincial parks in the 3 prairie provinces as possible. Then we ended up having snow on the ground until May. So I was pretty psyched to get on the road in August and drive out to North and South Dakota. Driving in the hills and mountains in South Dakota was challenging, I’m not going to lie. But it was scary or “too hard”. I just had to remain hyper-aware while making blind, hairpin turns. Uphill. It was definitely something I just wouldn’t have been equipped to handle a mere year ago.

It was SO worth it – the scenery and views in the Black Hills and Custer State Park are amazing. I really wasn’t expecting how beautiful it all was.

All my pictures are up on my Flickr account; I won’t post them all here. But here is one, just down the road from Mount Rushmore. Screen shot 2013-09-02 at 2.53.50 PM

I did a bit of shopping, but spent most of my time outdoors, either wandering around in the cities or out in the parks. It was awesome. I didn’t get a chance to do or eat everything I wanted; I stayed in an historic, haunted hotel and didn’t encounter any spirits, but I still really enjoyed myself.

There was a yarn store in Rapid City that was closed on Sunday and Monday, so I all but charged in there a minute after they opened on Tuesday! I got a couple gorgeous sock yarns.

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I really love the use of colours in the skein on the left. They’re mostly muted, except for that pop of lime green! I’m working with it now, in the Waterfall Socks pattern, from WendyKnits.net

I also got some clothes that it is currently too hot to wear right now. But watch for future OOTD posts in a few weeks!

Yesterday, I went to the beach for the first and last time this summer. With the weather being hit and miss and my time being at a premium, I just didn’t have a chance to go before then!

I went to Katepwa Point Provincial Park, which I hadn’t been to before. I wanted to go somewhere in the Qu’Appelle Valley, but I didn’t want to pay for it, as it’s a week before payday! That mean Echo Valley Provincial Park was out, as you can use the beach for free, but not the picnic area or hiking trails. I usually go to Echo, but just to the beach. I really wanted to hike this time, so Katepwa it is!

It was gorgeous out there! The weather wasn’t overly cooperative (BIG surprise…), so I went on my hike first. The Trans-Canada Trail runs through the park, so I did about 3kms on the trail and then turned around to come back and have the lunch I packed.

The trail is really pretty.

Screen shot 2013-09-02 at 3.18.00 PM

Some of it is secluded and away from the highway and some runs directly parallel to the highway, so you have to deal with loud vehicles from time to time (and Saskatchewanians LOVE to rev the engines of their motorcycles and impossibly oversized trucks!)

When I got back to the beach, I decided it was still too chilly to hang out in my bathing suit on the sand, so I sat in the picnic area and read and watched the boats on the water. By about 5PM, I decided that if I sit directly in the sun, I might not freeze to death in my bathing suit. I laid out my towel and took off my shoes and tank top. I was still too chilly though and left my shorts on. There was definitely no swimming in the cards for this girl! After about an hour, the sun was starting to disappear so it wasn’t directly overhead and most people, I discovered when I sat up, had called it a day and were starting to go back to their vehicles. I decided my day was over too.

I bought this bikini 2 years ago and have worn it like 5 times, max! Maybe I need to go on a tropical vacation or something and get some use out of it…

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Anyhow, I’ve got more ideas, but I’ll save them for future posts. Maybe if I’d actually post more often, I wouldn’t have to write a novel! I’ve updated the background and title colour and finally figured out how to do a signature. I quite like it.

Enjoy the last bit of summer and be good to each other!

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