Spending quality time with family
Last week I traveled to Lloydminster for my first family visit since my mom made the trip from Ontario to Alberta last November.
It was a lucky coincidence that my cousin Mark, his wife Aimee and their 14-month-old son Marshall, were attending a wedding in Swift Current, Sask., which allowed us the opportunity to meet up in the middle for a day, and gave me the chance to meet little Marshall for the second time.
It had been too long since Iíve had the chance to talk hockey with Mark, who told me about how he plays pick-up with Eric Lindros, and it was fun to hear all about how quickly little Marshall is growing up from Aimee, and boy is he ever sprouting fast.
Marshall was named after my grandfather, Marshall Beacock, who I had a very close relationship with as a child. For those of you who have read my previous baseball columns, Marshall Beacock was the one who brought me to see Joe Carter hit a home run, my favorite live baseball memory of all time.
It was exciting to find out that Mark and Aimee would be naming their baby boy after my grandfather, and I was lucky to have the chance to meet him before moving out west.
I first met my baby cousin at the going away shindig my family held for me in Ontario, just before I moved out here for this position. Marshall was so tiny that I was nervous to hold him, and only did so while sitting on the couch.
It doesnít feel like Iíve been here in Alberta for all that long, but the amount of time Iíve been here was made very clear when I saw little Marshall running around and sounding out words. Itís amazing how quickly things change.
After we had lunch together, we took little Marsh to a petting zoo just outside of Lloydminster (which for the record was my first-ever visit to the province of Saskatchewan). It was truly special getting the chance to see Mark and Aimee together as parents, and to watch Marsh as he ran around with an ear-to-ear smile exploring the different areas of the petting zoo.
Spending some time with family after 13 months of on-the-go reporting was a nice change of pace, and just made my anticipation to return to Ontario this Christmas even stronger, especially after missing last year.
Itís been a lot of fun living out here on my own, however I do miss having close family just around the corner, whether itís a quick drop-in hello, a weekend at the cottage or a family vacation, itís one of the few things I miss about living in Ontario.
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