Check the link below to see my mighty wife tackling a mighty tree. Hilarity ensues!
Check the link below to see my mighty wife tackling a mighty tree. Hilarity ensues!
Today marks the one year and three month ‘anniversary’ of our togetherness, a few more days and we can add 4 months of happy marriage to that. Time has certainly been flying by, what with both of us working full time during the week and trying to get out and explore as much as possible on weekends. As we’ve been decorating our apartment and getting ready for Christmas, it has really hit me how fast everything passes and how important it is to really be living in the moment and be thankful and excited for everything that we have. We have come so far and done so much in such a short amount of time that sometimes I find myself getting distracted in thinking about what’s going to happen next and trying to plan in advance for it rather than taking pleasure in what I have now. Keeping all of that in mind, it’s been nice for us to slowly work on fixing up our apartment, getting and decorating our tree, and just really taking in and enjoying the fact that this is our first Christmas together and the things we do now may end up being traditions we carry on for years to come.
Now, did someone mention a Christmas tree? That’s right, this past weekend we headed out to a tree farm in Richmond where we searched high and low for the perfect tree. Every time we saw a tree that we thought we liked, we would spot a seemingly better one off in the distance. Eventually we found our perfect tree, and after sawing off the top and bottom, we loaded it into the truck, and roasted our complimentary hotdogs over the open fire. It was a great afternoon. This is my first Christmas with a real tree so the whole experience was pretty exciting. And while I still miss my old fake 20+ year old tree back home just a little bit, I’m really coming around to the whole real Christmas tree thing, minus the bugs. The closer we get to Christmas, the more we miss friends and family. But it’s comforting and exciting experiencing the new beginnings of our own family. We hope all is well with everyone, we love and miss you all very much!
Cody & Beth
Nothing beats a little alliteration, eh? Just in case some of you may have gotten your hopes up, no, there are no dirty diapers in our immediate future. Or our not so immediate future, either. No, the dirty diapers in question were found at the main City of Vancouver Landfill, just outside of Delta. Why, you ask, would I be encountering dirty diapers at the dump, you are an Arborist for crying out loud! Well, it just so happens that the dump is surrounded by 100′+ cottonwoods. And it just so happens that the bald eagles that winter in and around the dump simply love swooping in and grabbing a talon full of garbage and dropping it in the upper reaches of the crowns of these trees. So, some how, way back when, my boss got the contract to climb these trees and fish the garbage out of them. Lets just say, its not the most glamorous side of ‘tree work’ that I’ve ever been apart of. It actually wasn’t too too bad, in the end (although I did step on 3 different decomposing diapers, which almost induced vomiting each time). The smell was very mild, the weather was beautiful and I was able to use one of my different climbing systems to go up and down the big trees. There is something very peaceful about being 15′ away from a bald eagle, 80′ above the ground. Peaceful, yet annoying. He swoops in all calm and graceful stuff after I spent the last 10 minutes huffing and puffing hauling my fat butt up the tree! Nature…
Like most weeks have been over the last little while, we have been staying pretty low key. We are getting comfortable living here in Vancouver, and I guess just living in general, as a newly married couple. Week by week, things are starting to look and feel a bit more like ‘home’. As we are gaining this comfort, however, we are trying to be mindful not to get TOO comfortable, and just fall into the day-to-day routine that can get quite monotonous. We’ve all been there. But, we feel we are in this place for a reason, that God has ultimately lead us here to make a difference in this community and in this city. We are just figuring out how and what that will look like right now. The amount of help that is needed in a city like Vancouver is pretty astounding at times, as with most major cities. Beth and I were actually talking about that today, and how it’s hard to look away when a pan handler asks for money. It lead to a brief, if not interesting, chat about the depth of help that one person can offer. Is it worth giving a loonie to each person who asks you for change? How is that ultimately going to help them? Because once that loonie leaves your hand, you have no power over where it is spent. You would like to believe the signs and well meaning things that are said, but you just never know. Beth brought up an interesting point about ‘harm reduction theory’ (or something like that, which I’m not smart enough to understand). If they take your money and go and buy drugs or alcohol or something with it, that is at least fulfilling their needs at the moment, giving them an opportunity to ‘function’, and possibly eventually seek professional help. It’s an interesting concept, albeit one that I’m not totally sold on.
The main point I guess is that you just can’t help everybody. But you can help some people. And maybe you can connect with that someone, maybe you can buy them a coffee and a sandwhich and have a chat. It’s little encounters like that that I believe can make a difference. If Jesus were in Vancouver, do you think he’d be hanging out in the giant mansions in Kitsilano and North Vancouver? Or do you think he’d be gathered down near the Downtown Eastside (nicknamed ‘the poorest postal code in Canada’), loving on some people who desperately need it? Bingo. It’s not the easiest thing in the world to put yourself out there, openly lending a hand and showing people that you care. But it is what Jesus would have done, that I know for sure.
All this to say that the reason we believe WE are here is to make a difference, and I think that difference is along the lines stated above. As always, if you feel so inclined, both of us would really love some prayer in this area of our lives.
Hope all is well with everyone out in cyber space! We are seeing lots of page views of this blog, but a perilously low amount of comments…
Last week went by so quickly, it feels as if it never happened, yet a few significant things did happen! First, and probably the most exciting thing of all (well, maybe not quite…) we finally received our wooden snowflake Christmas decorations that we ordered the week before. This was exciting for a number of reasons:
1) they were the first Christmas decorations that we purchased together in our first year of marriage for our first Christmas together
2) they are just so cute
3) we are in major Christmas spirit mode so any Christmas related anything is a big deal and
4) because there is minimal snow here for the winter/Christmas season it was important to us to incorporate snow somehow
The second exciting thing to happen last week, was that I (Beth) got a new job. A couple of weeks after starting my first job, my supervisor (a manager from the Community Homes branch of the organization) told me that the supervisor from the Supported Living branch of the organization had heard about me/my experience/my resume and was interested in having me apply for the program coordinator position at his facility. So I had my ‘interview’ aka conversation about the position, on Wednesday and Wednesday evening heard that I got the job. Unfortunately, this means I’ll be going between 3 facilities for the next month and a half, which is fairly intimidating considering I’m still learning just what the heck it is that I’m doing. Fortunately, this means that I now have a PERMANENT full time position. Woo hoo!
The third exciting thing for us last week, was that we were able to go to the Bald Eagle Festival on the weekend. After we sorted out some flooding issues with our apartment Saturday morning, we headed to Harrison Mills to see not only a ton of salmon spawning but hundreds of bald eagles feasting on these spawning and dying fish. It was such an amazing thing to see. One bald eagle is pretty cool, but being able to see hundreds (the ‘official’ count on Saturday when we got there was just over 1600) of them was just beyond cool. It may very well become an annual event for us.
On our way back from the festival we had the good fortune of meeting two friendly police officers. One intercepted us just before we entered the intersection as we had turned the wrong way down a one way street. “Have you been drinking tonight?” was a pretty fair question, when in reality we were just completely oblivious to the rules of that particular stretch of road. A few minutes later, another police officer decided to pull us over to make sure that everything checked out with our license, after she randomly ran our information. In her defence, it had been a long red light so why not run the license plate of the car in front of you? After that it was smooth sailing home. Sunday was filled with church, moving furniture, a coffee shop, and grocery shopping. All in all the weekend flew by, and now here we are embarking on a new week. It’s just so hard trying to keep up with the Montgomery’s…
Beth & Cody
Hello Family and Friends!
Apologies for the day-lateness on the blog post this week. We had a nice long weekend here in Vancouver, with Remembrance day today. Remembrance Day has always been an important holiday for me, despite not having any super close relatives or friends having fought in wars. Maybe that’s why it has always been important for me, I suppose. It’s that one day every year, where you can listen to the stories on the radio and read them in the paper of so many people that were affected, and you can feel what they have gone through and will continue to go through in the future. You never will actually be able to completely relate to them, but on days like today, you can just be thankful that people have made the ultimate sacrifice for our freedom so that we can live in such a wonderful country like Canada. Amen!
This past week was, like we warned you when we started the weekly updates again, just a simple week. Now that both of us are working, we are getting into a nice little routine. It’s nice going to bed at the same time and getting up together in the morning. I suppose that’s one of the subtle beauties of married life.
This week actually had a bit of a sombre note to it, as we bid our old car adieu. Norm II, as it was affectionately called, was driven to the wrecking yard on Thursday of this week. It was still a functional car, but the brakes were bad, it had and oil and exhaust leak, and the frame was badly rusted. So, I guess it wasn’t that functional in the end…
But, with every dark night, there comes a bright shining morning! The departure of Norm II allowed for the arrival of our ‘new’ yet-to-be-named pick up truck!! Yep, she’s a real beaut! 1987 Nissan D21 1/4 ton pick up. For those keeping track out there, you are right. This truck is two years OLDER than my lovely wife. But, we needed a second vehicle, and for the purposes that I would need it for work and the odd furniture move, this little truck is perfect! Beth just loves it! (ha…)
Today for the holiday Monday, we wanted to get out of the city a bit to relax, so we went to a little provincial park called Iona Beach Provincial Park. It’s actually not that far from our place, but it gives a great view of the Coastal Mountains, as well as the ocean and even over to the mountains on Vancouver Island. The park is a bit odd, as it is composed of a few lagoons (ideal for birdwatching) and two extremely long jetties out into the ocean. Like, they are loooonnng. We decided to walk out to the tip of the South Jetty. From the shore, it actually doesn’t look that long, but in reality, it is just under 4km long! So our little peaceful walk turned into an 8km excursion. Not complaining, it was just long. But, we got to see some neat birds (Barrow’s Goldeneye, Northern Pintail, Ring-Necked Duck) along with several Harbour Seals and even an otter! To Beth’s chagrin though, there were no whale sightings. Bummer.
We are continuing to get in the Christmas spirit here in our little apartment! The music is getting more and more frequent and we are starting to get a few more decorations up. Before you know it, we’ll have our very own little tree!
Hope all is well with everyone! Don’t forget to leave a comment to let us know how everyone is!
Cody and Beth
Christmas came early to the Montgomery residence (Vancouver branch) this weekend. Christmas decorations were ordered, lights were strung, and festive music was played/rocked out to. Regardless of the fact that it rained for half the weekend and was sunny and fall like the other half, we were feeling the Christmas spirit and decided to start the celebrations early. While it has not yet begun to look like Christmas, we decided that we “need[ed] a little Christmas, right this very minute”, and put up our newly purchased Christmas lights. It was a wonderful end to the weekend.
Apart from the Christmas celebrations, the weekend consisted of First Aid training (it’s never too late to learn how to save a life!), car repairs, and truck shopping. Since we both need a vehicle for work Cody has been looking at little trucks for our second vehicle. Tomorrow resumes another few days of training for me. Turns out, being a program coordinator is not just a carefree walk in the park. Prayers for a smooth transition into the position and not too steep of a learning curve would be much appreciated.
Other than that, we are settling into our lives pretty smoothly all the way out here. The Lord has (and continues) provided for us abundantly, and we look forward to what He has in store for us over the holiday season!
Merry (early) Christmas to all, and to all a good night!
We are back in action, here at the ol’ Montgomery Blog. It’s been a long while since we’ve last spilled ink on these pages, but, like most things in life, there is actually a good reason: Now that we are moved into our apartment, we just don’t do tons of blog-worthy stuff. I think it’s what they call ‘life’ (or something similar to it, anyhow). Now, that’s not to say that we don’t do exciting things, because we do! We do lots of exciting things, things that are worth blogging about. Just not every day. Or every other day. We are thinking that we will be settling into a once-a-week type of thing, likely on Sunday evenings, just to keep everyone that we know and love informed on the goings on in our lives. Plus, we have been directly threatened to be removed from a certain someone’s internet ‘favorites’ list. I mean, that’s just not acceptable!
So, as I mentioned above, my beautiful wife and I are in our perfect little apartment now. Well, its not so little, I suppose, certainly bigger than what our needs would be, but we wanted to have the extra space to ‘entertain’ any guests that just might happen to wander our way. It’s already worked out for us, as my brother and his lady friend made the trek from Calgary for Thanksgiving weekend. It was fantastic, as Beth’s brother Stephen and his fiancee Brianna were also in town. Throw in my cousin Melissa, and we had a 7 person feast in a barely furnished apartment! It was a blast having everyone over, and everything went surprisingly well. Only one person had to go to the hospital with food poisoning (kidding…)
Other big news is that both Beth and I are gainfully employed! I’ve been with a small tree company in Richmond (just south of Vancouver) for 3 weeks now, and Beth starts her job this week, as a program coordinator for mental health-associated programs. Hers is a maternity leave position, so she will be there for one year, but come on, when they see how awesome she is, there is no chance that they will let her go!
Well, that’s all of the major news in our lives for now. Here are a few pictures to illustrate the last month or so of our lives. Enjoy!
Been a few days since we’ve added anything to the ol’ blog. Now that we are landed safe and sound in Vancouver, we won’t be updating nearly as much as we were on our trip out, but I think it would be safe to say to check back in once a week or so to see what we’ve been up to.
Now that we have secured an apartment for the 1st of October, Beth and I have been trying to line up a few things to furnish the place with so when we move in we it won’t be just a cavernous estate full of echoes and emptiness (yes, 850 square feet counts as an estate!). The main thing we both wanted was a bed. We’ve been sleeping on an air mattress for what feels like an eternity. So we made it a priority to find a bed and make sure it can be delivered as soon as we move it. Happy to report we have done just that! One would think bed shopping would be fun and relaxing, which it was initially, but when you look past testing out countless numbers of beds, and start talking about all of the minor details that the salesman try to convince you that you absolutely need, it can get a bit tiring. We ended up getting a pretty awesome mattress, which is locally made and ended up getting a pretty sweet deal on it. Double score!
Other than that, we have just been on the lookout for any other apartment furnishings that are nice and affordable. Everyday we also get out to do a little exploring around the city too, which is a good relaxation method. The other day we made it down to Stanley Park and had nice if not brief walk around the park. The park is so huge, you really need a full day to really explore it. Today we explored an area south of Vancouver called Steveston, which is right on the water and is a historically restored fishing port. Pretty neat. We also checked out a bit more of downtown, including one of the downtown beaches at English Bay. Tomorrow it looks like we are going to check out UBC campus, which is more like a national park than anything.
Also, both of us have been pretty active on the employment front, getting resumes out and such. Beth has an interview next Wednesday (!), so if you feel so inclined, she could use your prayers for that. For myself, I met with a potential employer today, which went really well. I’m meeting another one on Friday, and between the two of them, I will likely be working come the first week of October.
We added some pictures to our photo link, so make sure you check them out!
-a couple of Montgomerys
At the time of our last post we were still homeless and sleeping on an air mattress. Well, we are happy to report that while we are still sleeping on an air mattress, we are now no longer homeless! After doing some exploring downtown Vancouver, we took out a deposit on an apartment that we had seen the day before that was a little bit more expensive than we would have liked but could have managed. While the place was very nice, both of us felt a slight feeling of unease about it, so we decided to go to one more showing and if it didn’t blow our socks off, we were going to take the place. As soon as we walked through the door of the second apartment, we loved it and knew that that was where we wanted to live. It was almost an immediate feeling of comfort and excitement. After talking with the landlord (who is a social worker!) and both parties expressing interest in renting and being rented to, we walked along the river that is just outside the house and talked about whether we could wait until November 1st to move in. As we were brainstorming and trying to figure out how we could make that work, we got word from the landlord that the place could be available for October 1, we just had to get our references to her IMMEDIATELY. Fortunately we were able to, she called them, and that same night let us know that the place was ours a whole month earlier than had originally been the plan. God certainly provided a home for us in a very short amount of time, and we are so relieved and excited!
A second answer to prayer came in the form of an acceptance letter from the British Columbia College of Social Workers. I can now officially call myself a Registered Social Worker!
In other news, since we had some extra time today, what with not having to go apartment hunting, we had the opportunity to explore North Vancouver. We ate DELICIOUS doughnuts, walked along Deep Cove, saw/walked across the Lynn Canyon suspension bridge, and went on a beautiful hike.
It’s been a wonderful couple of days, and we are finally starting to feel like we are settling in (we both even have local Vancouver cell phone numbers!).
We have added some new pictures to our link, so check them out!
Cody & Beth
Last everyone heard, we were going to be staying for a night at the Okanagan Falls Provincial Park. Unfortunately, by the time we got there, it was later Friday evening, and the campground was full…not overly surprising. Fortunately, not five minutes down the road, we found another campground that just so happened to have one spot available. We were the only tent among an entire campground of RVs, but the spot ended up being perfect for us (and conveniently located right beside the bathrooms).
Saturday morning, after acquiring a sweet cast iron frying pan (Cody was pretty pleased) and stopping for some local fresh fruit at a fruit stand by the side of the road, we continued on our way towards Vancouver. We drove along the most scenic highway of the trip, which curved around the sides of the mountains and gave us our first glimpse of the impressive trees B.C. has to offer. The drive was breathtaking. After a couple of hours of driving up and down the mountains, we decided to give Norm a rest in the little community of Hope. Pretty symbolic, huh? Feeling hopeful about our new life, while in a town called Hope, the irony was not lost on us.
Just over an hour from Hope, we entered the Fraser Valley, and inched closer to our new (temporary) home with Cody’s friend Matt, in New Westminster, which is part of Metro Vancouver. We will be staying at his condo for the next few days, while we search for our own little place to live. Which brings us to today.
Today we spent about 8 hours driving around to see 6 different apartments, all very different, all having varying degrees of awesomeness. We also learned that people have varying opinions on what “750 square feet” means. We ended up spending more time in the car today, driving place to place, than we did on average for the past 11 days. Pretty crazy. We have developed a numbering system for the places we see, ranging on a scale from 1-10. Today we saw two 7′s, a 6, a 4 and two 3′s. We have yet to fall in love with a place, which is unfortunate, but it is only day one of our search. Things can only go up from here! (right??)
Tomorrow we will be back on the search, while maybe taking an afternoon break to do some exploring. We did some driving around downtown and Stanley Park tonight, but it will be better to see it all in the day.
We appreciate all of the prayers from everyone back home. That is a MAJOR reason that we even made it out here yesterday.
Pictures to come!