And here is our third and final installment of our trip to Vancouver. Part One and Part Two are available to read if you missed the story leading up to this.

      So where were we? Ah yes. We finally made it to lunch and then took the kids back to the hotel for a little down time before heading to the VanDusen Gardens for their Festival of Lights. Both kids were up late the night before, then up again early that morning, so things were … potentially sketchy. After figuring out where we needed to go (we had internet in our hotel, but nothing after that), we set out in the car to find the gardens. We got there maybe a half hour after it opened and the parking lot was already full. People were pouring out of side streets where they had to park and we crossed our fingers we could find a spot that wasn’t too terribly far away. Only a few blocks up and we were golden!

      The gardens were spectacular all lit up. The kids took off, one wanted to explore, the other wanted to find Mr. Mancouver (hey, we do what we have to!). There were light shows intermittently set to music that our two little fellows didn’t have much patience for. Instead we meandered through the gardens, looking at the different displays (Gingerbread Forest, Candy Cane Lane, etc.). At one point we took a break to go check out their massive Star Wars Lego display that they pulled together for Christmas. Carter was in heaven – Gavin started to melt down. Again, more walking, not enough sleep, close to dinner – we sure know how to time things! We grabbed some food for the kids, walked by Santa, meandered a little more before we realized we needed to head out before we ended up in a situation like earlier today. Thankfully Gavin crashed on the way back to the hotel.

      Jeremy had a meeting to attend early on our last day. He was up, showered, and about out the door around 6:45 when the boys woke up. They really wanted donuts, so as we waved goodbye to dad and then pulled ourselves together to go to the nearest Tim Hortons. I left my camera behind (I needed two hands since I was on my own). They were so cute with their faces smooshed up against the donuts display case in utter indecisiveness. I let a good three or four people move past us in the line, all of them smiling when they saw why. Who can really pass up smiling at two little boys in sugar heaven over what to choose?? They were so funny sitting in a booth, eating their donuts, pondering what the best part of our trip had been, “I really like being in a city,” says Carter. “Do you think we can still find Mr. Mancouver?” from Gavin.

      We headed back to the hotel, swam the morning away, ordered room service one more time for lunch, and then headed home once Jeremy got back to the hotel. As we were driving out of the city, tears welled up in Carters eyes as he told us, “I am really going to miss Vancouver.” It was a special treat buddy, that is for sure. Both boys fell asleep on the ride home and we made it through a monsoon or two of rain. Thankfully the border wait time was next to nothing and we had plenty of time to get ready for Christmas Eve … which was the next day. EEK!

      Enjoy the photos!

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