Monday, September 26, 2016

Getting Ready For Hibernation

Happy Monday everyone! It is a frigid day here and it is looking, smelling and feeling like Fall! It kind of crept up on me being that just a little over a week ago, we were basking in the sun in Nova Scotia. 

We knew we had some work ahead of us this weekend and we were ready to tackle it! My brother and his family are gone and I have been enjoying spending some extra time with this fur ball when they are gone. It REALLY makes me want to get a big dog but we'll hold off for a while! 

We actually had to work on Saturday morning but thankfully Sam was able to come with us. We packed up breakfast and lunch to go and headed off. Sam was actually pretty fun to work with and it was just a quick job. 

I had pre-ordered my groceries from Walmart and so we swung by and grab them. I also had to run in to grab a couple things for my Sunday School lesson and Sam loved looking at the Halloween Costumes. 

Sam ended up having a dandy truck nap! We wore him out with the free child labor work he helped with! He slept HARD for about 1.5 hours. 

We stopped at Ryan's parents for a quick visit before heading home to unload groceries and then relax. 

Sunday morning I knew was going to be a busy day so I was up early with my coffee and to work! First I got about 1/4 of my frozen garden tomatoes simmering for a sauce. This is an ALL DAY process. It goes from this....

To this yummy sauce in about 12 hours...
It's a pretty plain tomato sauce base and I freeze it in batches either for spaghetti sauce or pizza sauce. I doctor the base with more herbs for spaghetti. 

We headed to church where I was the Sunday school teacher this week! I was pretty excited for my lesson and even though I only had 1 kid, we had a lot of fun putting the craft together for himself and some friends! Sam loved it too.

We got home for a quick lunch and then worked together in the garden pulling up the carrots. Sam loved this job. Once it was done he went down to sleep and we kept working and clearing out the veggie garden. It's a big task but a good one to have done before it gets too cold! We had such a successful garden. Virtually no waste and so many yummy treats that we'll enjoy all winter long. Our garden isn't very big but it gets us A LOT of fresh produce. And funny enough while I am glad to see it gone for the year and will like the break, I am already anticipating and planning for my 2017 garden.  

I got a text from my brother to go and pick some raspberries at his place because they don't want them to go to waste. So I headed over and picked all the ripe ones. I got a huge bowl full and threw them in the freezer for smoothies! 

I spent the rest of nap time making break and cookies for Ryan's lunch. I also started on cleaning and peeling the carrots. 

There were a few cool looking ones! You never know what is growing underneath that dirt. 

We had grown some regular and glass corn this year and used the stocks to decorate the porch. I also grew some squash and pumpkins just to use for decorating! 

The only thing I was missing was a square bail. So I texted my farming neighbor/friend and asked if they had any. And if so, if they'd be willing to barter. After supper (spaghetti, of course), I loaded up a basket of goodies to trade. Homemade bread, jam, pickles, a little knitted dish cloth and 2 company hats. It's nice to share some of your produce with great friends. 

And it was a successful trade! 

I was feeling kind of tired by the time we got Sam to bed so I opted to just chop and blanch the carrots I had already peeled, which was only about 1/4 of them. Hopefully I can get the rest done throughout the rest of the week! 

So much got accomplished around the house. I love that feeling on Sunday when you get lots of stuff done. I am glad the gardening season is over and now I can work on some of my other favorite hobbies during the winter months! 

How was your weekend? 


Wednesday, September 21, 2016

Nova Scotia 2016 Part 1

I think I am back in routine and the vacation hang over is over! People keep asking how our trip was. And I keep answering the same. "Amazing and very relaxing! It was so nice to spend so much time together". 

Because that is true.  I don't think before I left, that I realized that I actually missed Ryan and Sam. Sure, I'd see them every day but with the busy season, it was rarely quality time. 

We were a little nervous flying out on Thursday as it would be the first time Sam had his own seat on the plane. He loved it and watched Paw Patrol the whole time. It was actually kind of relaxing as Ryan sat with him on the way there. 

We had flown at Sam's nap time so for the 30 minute drive to my parents cottage, Sam had a little nap. He was clearly very excited to be in Nova Scotia. 

One very stress free thing about traveling down is that my parents have a dodge van and a car seat there so we get to travel light! No hauling a car seat through the airport! 

We arrived with some surprises for all of us. New trucks to play with for Sam and some liquid treats for us! 

It was so nice to sit back for that first hour unwinding from the plane ride and airport chaos and just enjoy the view. Vacation had started! 

We really kept it low key our first night. Hung out at the beach and ordered pizza in for supper! 

The next day we vegged around all morning, went for groceries and then relaxed and napped in the afternoon. Cousins Tasha and Gavin were coming over a for a games night! I was SO excited to see them and Sam loved the extra attention. 

When Sam went to bed we had a "snack" style supper. We could grab a little food in between visit and games! We played Exploding Kittens and Cards Against Humanity. Next thing I knew, it was 2 AM!!! It was a late night but we had SO much fun visiting with them! 

The next morning we had a big breakfast before Tasha and Gavin headed out and more visits with cousins from down the road! 

We were invited to another relatives (yes, I have ALOT of family there) for a corn boil! There were TONS of family members and it was so awesome that we could be there for this gathering. It was at my cousin Ted's who has this beautiful home with an amazing view. Sam's little cousin Lily was there and the two little ones had a blast playing way passed their bed times. 

We got home around 8:30 and Sam promptly went to sleep. Ryan and I settled for a little movie date. Around 10:30 PM Sam started crying and then proceeded to be awake and crying until 4:30 AM. It was rough. He kept complaining about a sore ear so we had a feeling we'd be headed to see a doctor Sunday morning. 

Thankfully, Nova Scotia has these awesome walk-in clinics. So we were in and out (and only paid $32 for out of province) in less than 2 hours. Sure enough, Sam had gotten his first ear infection and he also had a tear in his ear drum that was likely from having an ear infection and flying.  

It was a quiet and low key Sunday. We had actually had plans to attend another party with more family but had to decline. Instead we hung around the cottage trying to keep Sam eating and happy. Went for walks, beach visits and boat rides. 

It was a quiet and early night for us all. 

Monday we really wanted to get out of the house. The best part of my parents cottage is that you know its not going anywhere so we feel no pressure anymore to see the sights and sounds of Nova Scotia all in one trip. We have vowed to just relax and try and see ONE attraction each visit. 

We opted for Ross Farm Museum because it wasn't too far from the cottage and it was something of interest to us. Sam was clearly thrilled.... 

It was very quiet there being that it was off season and a Monday. We pretty much had the run of the place ourselves. It's an old fashioned working farm with original barns and houses. We love this kind of history. It was a great place to visit with Sam because he could run around and look at the animals. 

We even got to go on a horse drawn wagon ride! 

We got dropped off far from the main farm and while you can take the wagon back up, we decided to take the 20 minute nature trail by the water! It was REALLY cool and well done. 

We got home for nap and then relaxed. Ryan and I tried to make every evening when Sam would go to bed a date. This night we had left over snack foods and played rummy and then watched a movie.

Tuesday my Mom had actually booked me a massage in the morning. For a whole hour I enjoyed some peace and relaxation. It was amazing! The boys played and Sam got a bike and I got back shortly after lunch. 

When Sam woke from his nap we decided to take the 20 minute drive to Peggy's Cove. We didn't get too close to the edge. We mainly went because I had spotted a new cross necklace at the Pewter store there last year. I was hoping during my birthday or Christmas that Ryan would gift it to me but no luck. Thankfully, they still had it! It's very plain and small but exactly what I love. Nothing too fancy to wear everyday and only $21! 

We went to one of our favorite spots, The Finer Diner which is only about 5 minutes from the cottage. We had hardly eaten out since being there and decided to treat ourselves. We were TOTALLY those parents who let their kids watch Paw Patrol on the Ipad while we waited for our food. Sam still wasn't feeling 100% better and it was what kept him happy and occupied while we dined. 

Seafood chowder and tea biscuit 

And my first snack of fish and chips! YUM! 

That night we made a couple homemade Caesars and played more cards and watched another movie! 

We were having such a great time so far despite the ear infection and we still had so many days left....

Stay tuned for part 2! 


Monday, September 19, 2016

Summer Holidays 2016 Are Over

Happy Monday everyone! 

We are back from an AMAZING 10 days away and together. I feel like we really relaxed. Even me! Which I've learnt it hard for me to do. But the days were not jammed packed. I hung out with my boys, napped, ate and visited with family! It also didn't hurt that we were right on the ocean enjoying the water every day! Boat rides, swims and amazing coffee views. 

I want to tell you more but for now I am getting through a mountain of work tasks and 639 emails. Yes. 639! Ugh! 

Recap coming soon! 


Wednesday, September 7, 2016

Labour Day Weekend 2016

Happy Wednesday everyone! How is it already mid week? Yesterday was all about catch up after a 3 day weekend. This morning I can catch my breath a little and share our weekend! 

Labour day weekend means one thing where we live, Shawville Fair! This little hometown fair is something that we like to visit and are excited about introducing it to Sam. 

Ryan and I (more Ryan then me) have always had an interest in giant pumpkins. We have tried to do a couple of our own but this year we were given some advice from another local grower and we grew the largest one we have ever gotten. Pretty good for our first year really working on it. We were so excited that for the first time, I entered some stuff into the exhibits at the fair. Our giant pumpkin was weighed in on Wednesday  and came in third in the heaviest Squash/Pumpkin category.

On Friday, Ryan picked Sam up early and then we woke him early from his nap to enjoy some time at the fair! We had a blast and Sam LOVED the rides. The airplanes and monster trucks were his favorite. 

He also liked going through the petting zoo area but hated the goats! I didn't mind them so much! 

Back on the rides! 

For my first fair treat, I tried the Chicken Shawarma poutine! It was pretty good but there are so many other delicious treats at the fair too!  

Sam had no trouble finding some friends to go on rides with! We met up with Willow who agreed to take Sam on the helicopter ride for his first time and then met with cousins for another few rounds of rides! Sam was having a blast! 

We also found our friends at the dairy barn and stopped in a for a quick visit! 

Saturday Sam and I had a busy morning and I had plans for a girls night at the fair so Ryan and Sam stayed home. 

I loved getting a chance to walk through the exhibits! I think its now my favorite part! I love looking at the quilts, kids crafts, knitting and produce! I only put a few things in this year as I was unsure of how to do it but I am excited at the thought of doing more next year! Even maybe some of my knitting! 

Pumpkin got third, watermelon fourth and my tomatoes got FIRST! I couldn't believe my tomatoes were first place (out of about 11 entries). I was SO excited! 

My one and only beer token that is actually from 3 years ago! ha ha! 

Girls night at the fair started out with my first Willy Dilly's. YUM! We walked around the exhibits, the midway and watched some rides. We then had an AMAZING meal at Bonnie's where I found my new favorite fair food, the bacon curd burger! YUM! 

We also took in the some of the holstein show as we knew some of the competitors. I have to admit, I kind of like watching some of the 4-H shows. 

We had a great time hanging out in our normal spot taking in the music that night. I think we were feeling a little giddy and there were times we couldn't stop laughing! It was so much fun! I needed that girls night! 

The only disappointing part of the fair was Sunday. We opted to head up for lunch and an hour's worth of rides after church. We got there in lots of time to have a bit to eat. We noticed the monster trucks were taken away and so the only other ride, the helicopters was also closed for being broken. 

Sam was getting anxious to get on a ride so we brought him over to the other airplane ride that he was tall enough to ride. He was SO excited but it was a long wait as only 1 out of 2 planes were working. 

When it was finally his time, he was squealing in excitement. Check out this face...

Anyone that knows my boy, knows that Sam can be kind of be a serious dude. He seems to like to look around, take things in and try to figure out how something works. Well when the plane started swinging, he started looking around trying to figure it out. Suddenly the woman operating the ride stopped it and removed Sam and only Sam from the ride. Of course he was not happy to be taken off and when I asked why she said "he doesn't look to be having fun". EXCUSE ME? Well...Momma bear came out. I was NOT happy and even more unhappy that we had gone up to the Fair and Sam wasn't able to go on even one ride. 

Thankfully the rest of the day was awesome and made up for it. A quiet nap time and then dinner and games with friends Rebekka and Josh! 

Monday was our glorious day off and we had so much fun hanging out and getting stuff done around the house. Sam was having a blast playing in his sand box. His new thing is lining his vehicles. My OCD is so happy when he does this. 

After a short nap, we headed back to the fair for more fun! We had to pick up our veggies/fruit and figured we'd get in a few more rides and supper. 

The ride lines were small and Sam went on the helicopters over and over. 

And once on the merry-go-round which he called "Chevals".  

We got Bonnies again for supper and then mini donuts to share on our way out. I think the donuts were Sam's favorite treat. 

"Cheers" to a great Fair weekend!