Monday, October 31, 2016

October ~ a few memories

I'm so glad I live in a world where there are Octobers.  
~ Anne of Green Gables

Is there anything quite like the colours of October? 
I'm with Anne!

It was a lovely month!

We were a few days late in celebrating Maggie's birthday this year...
so her September birthday had an October party.

On a lovely Sunday afternoon we took a walk along the Vedder River trail with the kids...

...the grands
...and their dog.

Ryder spent the first month of the school year with his arm in a cast...
and was happy to have it come off shortly after this outing.

Some come to walk.
Others to fish.
So thankful to the Rotary Club of Chilliwack for the trail that runs along the river.

We had beautiful weather on the Thanksgiving weekend...
and went for a walk at the Cheam Wetlands Park on the Sunday.

It's another jewel in our neighbourhood!
A quiet one.

Our fifth and final cut of grass for the year happened on October 11th.

It's always a good feeling to be done the harvesting for the year.

Just down the road from our place...
the cranberry harvest for the year was happening.

There's nothing like a splash of red to brighten a grey day in October!

There were plenty of grey days this month.
And lots of rain.
But when the sun came out...

...the colours were amazing!

It's hard not to take pictures!

As the sun sets on October...

...I am spending some time far from the 'green grass of home'.
It's a time for reading, relaxing, spending time with family and friends...
and enjoying the sunshine.
Every single day.
It rarely rains in the desert!
I'll be home soon.

Saturday, October 15, 2016

Amish Country Tour

Before our time in 'Amish country' is a distant memory...I thought I would share a few pic's of our time in Indiana and Ohio.  In most cases the photos speak for themselves.  So I will let them do that! All photos were captured with my i-phone, and many through a dirty windshield while bumping down country while the photos may be less than stellar, the images are great memories of our time in a beautiful corner of the USA!

Farmers can not resist the temptation to stop and chat with fellow farmers along the way!

Beds of pink petunias brightened the landscape wherever we went.  Always bright pink!

'The cattle on a thousand hills' were enjoying their final fall days out on pasture.

On every corner...a garden market.

From pretzel stands to coffee shops and bistros...the food and service was amazing.

On the advice of a local...we ate at the Boyd and Wurthman Restaurant in Berlin, Ohio.  There is a reason that every seat was full and there was a line-up out the door!

Something about the name called for a photo!

There were shops galore...but we mostly toured the countryside.

There are places where children still ride bike to school...

...and play softball during lunch break.

And families play croquet on the front lawn on Sunday afternoons.

Places where one goes to town with a horse and buggy.

The church parking lot on Sunday.

Barn quilts decorate businesses and barns.

'Gardens will bless your soul. They are a place to rest, to draw near, and to heal.' ~ An Amish quote.

Do you get the picture?  We found Amish country to be beautiful and  peaceful...a step back in time.

And just so you don't think we were staying in a hotel without electricity...I'll leave you a photo of our lovely room in Sugarcreek, Ohio.  What a delightful surprise we had when we checked into our hotel!

Let me add one collage of photos that give the reason for our visit.  We were guests of the Blue Gate theatre company and took in the Mennonite Girls Can Cook theatrical production in two locations.  We had book-signings at local bookstores as well a cooking show and met so many wonderful people.  What a delightful experience to share with all ten of the MGCC ladies!

A tour of Amish country was the perfect way to usher in autumn 2016. The memories will live on.

Sunday, October 2, 2016

September remembered...

Autumn is here....and September has come and gone.  Once again.  How did that happen so quickly?

Let me just re-cap the month of September with a few photos from my files.  

We arrived home from our vacation in northern B.C. as the month began.  As you all know, the fridge is empty and the cupboards are bare when one has been away for any length of time.  Right?  What a surprise to find someone had stocked my fridge and baked up a storm while I was gone.  We ate like kings for days...bean soup, corn-on-the-cob, fresh buns, Greek salad, chicken salad and pie-by-the-yard. Gotta love friends!

The kiddos all headed back to school.  Lucy (our youngest grand) started kindergarten.  The oldest two are in grade ten. Ryder had a most memorable 'first day of school' this year.  Not only did he start fifth grade in a new school...he broke his wrist that day as well.  He will not be playing hockey for awhile!

A good friend was celebrating her milestone birthday this month. We hosted a party and thought it might be fun to surprise her with a new outfit for the occasion.  What fun we had putting together a fabulous ensemble at a local 'thrift store'...from the perfect red hat (modeled by Marg after our successful shopping trip), to a dress off a manequin, a purple boa and all the accessories.  The red bag was an 'old age survival kit'.  She was a good sport and wore the outfit for the evening...and looked smashing in red. She is not quite used to the idea of being sixty and has not given me permission to post any photos.  Yet.  It is always a joy to celebrate the milestones of life!

The corn came off the fields once again.

I watched from my kitchen window!

Or from the road as I went for an evening walk. This particular field was serving as a picnic-ground for the bears and they weren't particularly happy to see the corn crop being cut.  Ryder and his friend were riding along as the last of the field was being cut...and were thrilled when they saw the bears running off to the mountains. 

Guess who else had a birthday? He doesn't always remember exactly how old he is anymore. It gets harder as the years add up!

And a few days later my dad turned 94.  He knows exactly how old he is...and always likes a party!  He came out to the farm on his birthday, rode along in the truck that was hauling the corn, and joined the crew for lunch (including apple pie a la mode, of course)  In the evening, three of us sisters took him out for supper.  And he had pie again!  Every day is a gift...and at his age, a very special gift. 

Before the first day of fall arrived...there was snow on Mt. Cheam.

Let me add a few September evening pic's...the beauty of sunshine and clouds.

 Isn't God's artwork just the best?

The month ended with a trip that took us to Indiana and Ohio together with my good friends from Mennonite Girls Can Cook.  We took in a theatrical production with that name in both locations, had book-signings and a cooking show and met so many wonderful folks out there.

To get all ten of us not an easy task.  That we were all able to make the trip is quite unbelievable.  It was just the best experience...and so good to have most of our hubbies along as well.

We all met up at the lovely Blue Gate Garden Inn in Shipshewana, Indiana last Sunday and met on their courtyard for 'faspa' (...a celebration of food and a gathering of friends in the Mennonite tradition). The stores and restaurants in the area were all closed as it was Sunday...but we had picked up supplies earlier and were amazed at the spread we came up with. 

 It was just a delightful time!

We so enjoyed our drives through the countryside, our chats with the Amish people, the warm welcome and wonderful food we enjoyed during our stay.  I'll be back with a blog-tour through Amish country one day soon.

Let me close with a photo taken this morning...from 'my back porch' at home.  Home...always a good place to be!

Wishing you all a wonderful month of October!