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Vacation……last day

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Oh no…..where did the time go, today is my last day of vacation…..for this time around. I still have another 2 weeks to take but since my husband doesn’t get as much time off as I do, I will most likely be taking vacation time alone, that’s not nearly as much fun. ūüė¶

This morning I got up around 6:00am to let the poochies out for their morning pee break, threw a load of laundry in the washer and as soon as it was finished and in the dryer, the pooches and I went back to bed….ah how I love vacation and sleeping in. We got up again around 9:30am only because I had to take Erika to work for 9:45 or there’s no telling how long I might have slept in. We had a change in air yesterday so we turned off the air conditioning last night and slept with the windows open. There’s nothing better than sleeping all snuggled in under the blankies with the cool air blowing on you, makes me look forward to Fall since this has been such a hot summer.

I probably should have taken the dogs out for their walk earlier than I did…..noon was a bit hot for them but we did a short walk and I snapped a few pictures along the way.

 

 

Vacation….Day 1

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This is day 1 of my second week of vacation for this year. My first week was in March and we took a trip to New Brunswick. This week we have no plans….I still have 2 more weeks to take but I haven’t decided when yet.

To start off my “no special plans” vacation week, I got up at 5:30 to take the dogs out, then got laundry started and drove my husband to work so I could keep the car, just in case I needed it. When I got back home I called the vet to make an appointment for our dog Emma for later this afternoon, then I had to trim her nails and give her a good brushing so the vet wouldn’t make me feel guilty about neglecting her grooming. Then it was time to take the dogs for a walk before it got too hot….it already was too hot, so I just took them for a short walk….2km, brought them home and then went walking on my own.

I did a 10km walk counting the 2km I did with the dogs and I took a few pics and some video of a deer in the woods…..While I was watching the deer there was a man on the trail who stood perfectly still while I was recording so he wouldn’t scare it away….that was very nice of him. ūüôā

I love the shade of red in this picture.

I’m all about the red.

The winding path.

More burgundy than red, but still nice.

Bird on the swamp.

Clouds reflected on the swamp.

Hanging from the tree.

This chipmunk chased a squirrel out of the tree ….. and then kept a close eye on me.

More swamp.

This ugly creature tried to block my path, but I managed to get around him…..he was HUGE!

Pretty.

Kinda in the middle of no where.

I think this tree has seen better days.

A busy bee.

Caught the bee flying away.

Another busy bee.

I’ve wondered what these were.

A frog sunning himself in the swamp.

This guy might be trying to hide.

A prince perhaps?

Hard to catch these guys.

Very pretty.

Just hanging out.

Sitting pretty.

These birds are my favorite colour.

Amazing how light these birds are.

Hiding in the cat tails.

And last…. a little brown bird sitting in a tree.

March Break Vacation

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I just spent this past week visiting my “Mother Land”….the place where I was born and raised¬†and spent the first 38 1/2 years of my life. I moved from New Brunswick to Ontario nearly 12 years ago and until now I haven’t had an opportunity to go back for a visit. Some of my¬†family members have been to visit¬†me since my move…my parents, both of my brothers and their family’s, and my sisters two children, ¬†but this was my first trip back.

Between my job, my husband’s job and my youngest daughters school, sports and work schedule there is a very small window of opportunity to take a vacation away, but we finally found a few days that would work for all of us……and our older daughter agreed to pup sit for us so we were about to take our first trip away together that didn’t involve Erika playing sports.

Once we decided on the dates for our travel plans, I called my Mom to let her know we were coming for a visit. The Monday before we were to leave on our vacation my brother Andrew called me at work to tell me that Mom was going into surgery…..in 45 minutes……..well you couldn’t have stunned me any more than that little piece of news did, she was having a dye test done that morning and ended up having emergency surgery for a¬†pacemaker. That just made my trip East even more important. I spent the next three days in constant contact with my mom and my brothers getting all the¬†information I possibly could on how she was doing and how my dad was holding up. I was really looking forward to spending some time with my parents. Our original plan was to stay with them while we were there but since my parents were now staying with my sister because of the surgery we decided we would stay with my brother and his family instead.

Friday morning finally arrived and we loaded our car and pulled out of our driveway at 4:02 am….precisely……just before we got hit with a nasty snow storm. Thankfully the storm did not follow us to New Brunswick. We had great weather for the long drive.

Blue skies and a few clouds for the drive to N.B.

A couple of stops for gas and grub and 15 hours later we arrived at my brother’s house.¬† A huge thank you to him, his wife and their 2 daughters for making room for us. We were a bit tired by the time we arrived, my husband especially since he did all the driving except for about an hour that I took over.

My husband doing what he likes to do....driving.

Erika slept for most of the trip so she didn't think it was a long drive at all.

Saturday morning we got up and went for breakfast with my brother and his family,¬†(we had to keep our Saturday morning tradition) and then we went to visit my parents at my sister’s house. There have been a few changes in the highways since I was last there and the drive seemed to take forever…..even though it was a pretty short drive compared to the 15 hours we did the day before. After much anticipation I got to give my mom and dad a big hug and see for myself that my mom was really doing ok.

The next few days were spent¬†sight-seeing and catching up with Mom and Dad and visiting with family and friends. We didn’t have time to do everything and see everyone that we had hoped to due to some nasty weather moving in….freezing rain…..but we did get to see some of the more important places and people I had wanted to fit in,¬†we saw some people that we weren’t expecting to see, and we had some great meals.

On Sunday we took a detour on our way to see Mom and Dad and drove to my old home. The house has definitely¬†aged (as I have) and there seem to be a few more trees that I don’t remember being there but other than that it was the same as I remember….muddy road and all.¬†

My Old Home...The House on The Hill.

Sunday evening the family all got together at my brother’s house for a good old Sunday dinner which included both turkey and ham. Thank you Pat and Andrew, it was delicious.

Family Photo. Just missing three of mine and one of my brothers kids.

Lunch with Mom and Dad on Monday before sight-seeing.

Tuesday we took a trip to Moncton to drop in¬†at ¬†my husbands head office. His boss took us out to dinner at St. Hubert, a restaurant I used to love and haven’t eaten at since long before I¬†moved to Ontario. It was every bit as good as I remember it being. That evening we drove into Sussex to have dinner with long time friends Scott and Christy. They cooked a delicious meal for us and we hung out and chatted just like old times except this time I wasn’t the one with the little children, they were. Erika had a great time entertaining being entertained by their girls.

On Wednesday we had planned to have another visit with Mom and Dad before leaving but due to some freezing rain we were a bit house bound that day so a good-bye phone call to them had to do. Not the same as hugs and tears which is the usual when we say good-bye. ūüė¶

We headed home on Thursday morning in a snow storm, nasty roads and slow going for the beginning of our trip home.

View from my brothers dining room window...not what I wanted to see.

Nasty roads ahead made for a slow drive.

Once we got to the New Brunswick / Quebec border the roads were much better.

We¬†drove as far as Ottawa and spent the last day of our vacation being tourists in our Nation’s Capital. We didn’t want to spend the entire day there since there was still a five-hour drive ahead of us to get home¬†so we¬†visited the War Museum and the Parliament Buildings and decided we would have to go back another time to see some more.

Chris and Erika in Ottawa

War Museum

Parliament

Beautiful sunset as we made our way home.

After putting 4374 kilometers on our car, and $625 in the gas tank (which includes all the¬†driving we did for the week we were there….and that was a lot of driving), we arrived home late Friday night and I have to say, as much as I enjoyed my trip back east and seeing everyone, it sure was nice to be home again.

The trip went well and the consensus is that we will try to do it again soon…..not sure how soon, but definitely sooner than 12 years. ūüôā

Summer Vacation……

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Taking a vacation together this summer isn’t something that is likely to happen for Chris and I due to circumstances with work, but we did manage to get a couple of days off together and are calling it our vacation.

Our vacation started on Monday, which we both had off because it is¬†our Civic Holiday¬†here. We didn’t do much of anything all day but in the evening¬†we took the girls over to Ryan and Whitney’s again for a swim in the pool to cool off. Erika had her friend Emily with her so after a swim we took the two of them to Harveys for dinner while Shana stayed to swim for a bit longer.

Ryan, Shana, Erika and Whitney

Erika trying to put Ryan under…..not very successful…..

Shana and Whitney…….looking like they are plotting someones demise…….

Shana’s turn to try to take Ryan under……

Erika

Shana

Whitney

Ryan

Tuesday morning¬†was our “beach day”. We took Shana to work and then Chris and I, Erika and Emily headed to Grand Bend¬†for a day¬†at the beach in what was forecast to be¬†30 degree temps. Grand Bend is on Lake Huron and the drive from our place is about 2 hours long. It was already hot when we arrived at 10:30 am so we set up our beach umbrellas, and our lawn chairs and headed to the water.

Heading for the first dip…..

Playing “sticky ball” on the beach…..

Chris and Me…..self portrait……

Ready to go back in with “our” floaties……

So much for “sticky ball” in the water……

Around noon the skies turned cloudy and I’m pretty sure the temperature was not at 30 degrees, which is good I guess, unless you really love the scorching temps, which we don’t. We had a little snack for lunch and then did some more swimming.

The girls clowning around with the broken toys…..

Erika……

Fred and Harry…….friends on the beach……

The girls decided they wanted ice cream so they¬†took a walk¬†to the little shops just up from the beach area. While they were gone it started to sprinkle so Chris and I started to deflate the tubes and rafts, and get the car packed back up. I’m not really a huge fan of staying at¬†the beach when the clouds are rolling in and a threat of thunder storms are on the way. The girls came back just as we were finishing packing up……great timing on their part. ūüėõ

Our names in the sand…..

Writing in the sand……

It was around¬†3:30 pm when we headed home from the beach and so we stopped in Stratford “home of the Beib” for some KFC¬†for dinner. We had forgotten that it was tooney¬†Tuesday at KFC……seems like it’s¬†dinner for the pensioners here……The girls didn’t want anything for two reasons…..they aren’t fans of KFC, and they had just finished eating when we left the beach. We sat down to eat and Erika looked around and said, “Did you guys happen to notice that we are the youngest people in this place right now?” It was kind of funny because everyone besides us was over 65……..and yes I could tell by looking. One older couple chose to sit beside us (even though there were so many other empty tables in the place……I’m thinking they might have been regulars and we might have taken their seat, sort of like in church when someone new comes in and picks a seat and gets the evil eye from the regular who normally sits¬†there every Sunday). Erika and Emily were having fun and laughing at just about anything and the older lady beside us looked at her husband¬†( I assume it was her husband) and said “I sure don’t appreciate sitting next to these young kids.”¬† Wow, really?? I respect my elders but seriously?…….you chose to sit here, we were already eating when you came in! We suggested that the girls take their “laughter” outside and the lady said “Good, now they can go laugh all they want!” I am going to make it a point as I get older to try very hard to remember what it was like to be young and not make those kinds of comments.

All in all it was a great day at the beach with my husband and the girls…….very relaxing and even though it was quite cloudy we all managed to get a little bit of a sun burn.

Wednesday was our last day of vacation together. We took Shana to work and then sat around all morning. I played on my laptop and Chris played on his X-Box.¬†We fit doing a little laundry in there as well, because…….well, laundry always needs to be done. We cooked a roast for dinner and¬†ended our little summer vacation with a trip to London for Erika’s soccer game. The outcome was a 2-1 win which put Erika’s team back in first place again…..for now.

Erika and Aubrey coming out of the net after Aubrey’s 2nd goal of the game….

It was a great couple of days……I can’t believe vacation is over already……..it seemed so short! ūüôā Here’s hoping we can take a few more days off together in the fall……but for now, back to work tomorrow!