Saturday, October 12, 2013

A Walk on the Dykes

Went for a walk on the dykes with my friend Ruona a few weeks ago.  Thought I would post some pictures of fall in the lower mainland before I left for my trip. I never got around to writing anything and I am now in England lol. But here are the pictures.
The clouds covering the mountains and blew away while we were there.:-)

Driving home down 224th st in Maple RIdge.

Wednesday, October 9, 2013

What a Summer. A Family Re-union.

I can't believe I did not post anything over the summer. I kept thinking about it and then something else was happening, in real life, and I never got onto the computer. lol.
The summer of 2013 was very full and filled with family, friends and sunshine.
The plans for the cob house changed as the process unfolded.  You can see more details on the Pam Cob House blog.  However we did get the septic field in and also all the concrete footings are done, thanks to amazing workers from the islands.

The highlight of the summer had to be time spent on Mayne Island with my family who came over from England. We booked up several cottages at Blue Vista Resort and had a real family reunion. Over the course of two weeks there was my sister, her husband, sister-in-law and son, my brother and all four of my kids along with Laura's husband Jonathan and their kids. My sister and her husband also came and several dear friends also paid a visit.  It really was a special time of card games, barbecues, meals out and walks together. 
You can see that the four on the left are the Carr siblings, and it isn't often we are all together as two of us live in England.  It is always so great when we can all be together. It was unfortunate that Sara, Emma and Paul couldn't make it, but it is really quite amazing that so many of us all managed to make it over to Mayne to re-connect within the same two week period. :-)
I have to say that Carmen at the Blue Vista was an amazing host and went out of her way to make sure we had everything we needed at all times.

Before the English crew arrived, Laura and Jonathan came over with the kids to join Beth and Claire and myself on Mayne Island.  It was perfect timing for the Fall Fair Parade and all the displays at the Ag Hall as well as the amazing Farmers Market.  

Beth and Claire waiting for the parade in the beautiful sunshine. It was such a great summer this year.

Laura and Jonathan and the kids waiting for the parade to begin.
Here comes the parade. It was so much fun, music, foolery and floats.
The entrance to the Farmer's Market and all the special Fall Fair Displays.
Kayla got to pick out her own bracelet at the market.

All the veggies and fruits on display. There were so many amazing categories and crafts there.

My favourite treat at the Farmer's Market are these Thai Spring Rolls, so fresh and delicious.

First cup of coffee after we are re-united. Three sisters together at last.
The men at the reunion coffee stop, and the bakery/coffee shop on Mayne is amazing. We got four large pizzas for take away supper one night and it was so good. :-)
Cousins together again, Luke and Kevin.

It was so great to be staying at the Blue Vista Resort. It was the perfect location in so many ways. It was a ten minute walk from my property so we could walk up and see how things were progressing with the building of the footings for my cob house. Peter Wilkening from the island was so skilled at building the frames and installing the rebar before the concrete was poured. He took care of everything for me and things turned out great.
My English family visiting my property to check out on the plans for my cob house.
So happy Geri and Len came to visit us. We owe them one now lol.

Also the Blue Vista is only a ten minute walk from the Mayne Inn and this was to become our favourite place to have lunches and dinner. They also had a liquor store and this proved to be very convenient too!!
This is the view as you sit on the deck at the Mayne Inn.  They have great food and a fabulous setting.

Just past the Mayne Inn is the sandy beach at Bennett Bay. It was great to be able to saunter down there on a sunny day to spend some time sunbathing, playing in the sand and paddling.
Cameron busy in the sand.
The Blue Vista Resort is also perfect for families and this really suited us. Every day Kayla and Cameron made new friends and played outside constantly.  Even when it was drizzling they wanted to be outside.
Happily sitting under the umbrella colouring together. There were so many picnic tables and barbecues available for our use.
 Claire's birthday fell at the end of August and we decided to have an early celebration so we could all be there to share in the occasion. We went to the Springwater Lodge to have a birthday meal and they kindly put a candle on her bumbleberry pie so we could all sing to her.  It was a lovely time and the kids enjoyed sitting out on the deck too.

Happy Birthday Claire.

After the meal we all went to Geri and Steve's cabin and had an evening of cards, just one of the many.

Birthday fun.
I am so grateful for this family time together. I appreciate my family travelling all the way from England to visit and we are so lucky to all get along so well and to value and appreciate each other so much. We have had a lifetime of separation, which I am sure is not unique to families here in Canada. Our parents came here after the war and travelled back and forth between Canada and England many times. I too did the trans-Atlantic move many times with my kids and it builds some kind of resiliency into the family dynamic I think.  Anyway, we all seem to have survived it and certainly have a lot of laughs together.
Me and my baby :-)

Geri and one of her babies, lol. It was so sad that Paul couldn't be there with us. We really missed him.
 The other magical part of my summer was the time spent with special friends. That will have to wait for another post I am afraid.

Thanks for stopping by to share my summer memories. I hope to be more consistent with my blogging now that the fall has arrived.