minus one.

it all started at a housewarming party: pleasant chit chat with acquaintances and strangers turned into a glass of wine in one hand and mary’s baby on the opposite hip.

“at 37 weeks pregnant, laura reminded me that she doesn’t really like kids,” she remarked to those we were chatting with.

and it’s true, i’m not too fond of kids. that is, unless i’m crazy about their parent. so i reassured mary that i’ll always like her baby because i adore her.

the moms chatted away about baby things, and life things, as i bounced the smiley little girl in my arms and looked in mirrors. what else do you do with a seven-month-old?

i overheard as the conversation shifted to the august long weekend, and mary’s hopeful plans to have her first few days away from her child.

“i’ll go with you!” i probably shouted, inviting myself on mary’s adventure.

long weekends haven’t been a big deal in my life over the last year and a bit. with weekend work taking up most of my time, i’d try to book a super early morning hike for the monday in hopes of beating some tourists and other explorers to the trail.

chester lake

our last-minute planning led us to many sold out errors, but we found an airbnb in canmore for two nights – just mountains, fresh air, and relaxing. it was all about what mary wanted to do – including giving her the king-sized bed and no wake up time – and hiking for me, duh.

i had never hiked with mary and was excited to since she is much more experienced and mountain-y than me. plus, she’s put up with me in the middle of a bike riding meltdown a few years ago, so i knew she could handle it if i had a hiking breakdown. (so i’m a bit dramatic, fine.)

for all of these reasons, i let her pick the hike. we were looking in canmore, but everything seemed to be closed because of bear warnings/sightings, so we continued down the smith dorian parkway into peter lougheed provincial park to the chester lake trail head.


it’s a popular trail, which is always a good thing when there are bears around. chester lake is a 10.2km roundtrip moderate hike that has forest trails and two meadows that ends at a beautiful lake.

oh, i forgot to mention that all it does is rain in calgary these days, so just as we arrived at the lake, it began to rain. dear weather report, noon isn’t 3 p.m. get it together! thankfully we found cover under our hoods and some trees, and got to enjoy our semi-dry lunch before taking some photos and returning back to the car.

being a little soggy, cold and baby-homesick, wine was a very needed nighttime activity. we sipped on invivo sauvignon blanc as we made dinner, and ended up pouring the rest of the bottle into plastic tumblers to take out to the patio while we ate.



two friends sharing a meal over good wine made by two friends. it seems almost perfect!

invivo wines of new zealand is one of alberta’s fastest growing sauvignon blanc brands. it’s not really surprising that, according to the wine market council, millennials have rapidly become the largest wine drinking segment globally. it’s because the majority of us just drink it, we don’t need to know special wine speak, or pretentious tasting techniques. i’m no good at all that fancy wine stuff. to me, wine smells like wine. i don’t know why you’d want it to smell like dirt or oak or any of those things. case in point: i drank it out of a plastic tumbler.

exhausted, we went to bed early after some yoga and a hot tub. we packed up, stopped at communitea for a latte, and headed back home to a very adorable little girl that was happy to see her momma.

it was so simple, but such a great weekend. you know that friend that you can talk about anything with? serious or so shallow? that’s mary for me! who is yours? spend some time with them. i promise you you will be thankful.

what did you do for the long weekend?