Sunday, April 23, 2017

It's Been A Long Time!

What can I say, I have been gone fro nearly a year, no blogging at all. What started a temporary situation turned into a full blown sabbatical.

In 2016, February to be exact, I got laid off from my job, which saw me focusing on nothing but finding a new position. Not the easiest of tasks in Nova Scotia! Thankfully I was paid for a couple of months so it gave me some breathing space to keep a look out. In March I went on vacation, I flew over to the UK to meet up with my father, his partner, my brother and his girlfriend. Having met up at Gatwick we stayed overnight and then flew out the next day to Cypress and embarked on a week long cruise to Israel and Turkey. We were scheduled to visit Beirut, but high winds prevented us from making it there and instead we spent extra time in Cyprus. I found the trip quite amazing and learned a lot especially in Jerusalem. I have included a couple of images from that trip below:

The Western Wall

Holy Lanterns in the Church of the Holy Sepulchre

Alanya, Turkey

Korykos Castle, Turkey

Holy Sepulchre Interior, Jerusalem

After returning from my cultural adventure, my job hunt intensified. I had a few interviews, even came close a couple of times and then finally landed a term position in May as a Communications Assistant for a Real Estate Firm. It was a baptism of fire and a steep learning curve, but I really enjoyed my time there and the skills I gained along the way. The term was supposed to only be for 3 months, but I Eden up being employed there for 8 months. I knew my time was limited there so I kept an eye out for other jobs and as if perfectly timed, the week before I left there I landed a permanent position at a local firm as a Marketing Coordinator, which I am not just over 4 months into the role and very much enjoying it. The Real Estate firm have tried to coax me back into the fold there, but as much as I enjoyed the work, I am now earning more and with much better benefits closer to home. So it's really a no brainer that I will be staying put. As I left the one position and before starting the new I headed off on vacation once again and met up with my dad and his partner in December for a Caribbean Cruise, which was undoubtedly my most favourite sea faring adventure to date. I met some fabulous people on there and visited the most beautiful islands Barbados, Dominica, Guadeloupe, Martinique, Grenada and St Vincent and the Grenadines. You can view the slideshow of this trip below:

I actually embarked on another trip in February for my birthday. This time I flew down to meet up with the family in Fort Lauderdale and we sailed from Miami around the Bahamas to Grand Turk, San Juan and Nassau. I actually spent my birthday interacting with Sting Rays on Balmoral Island in Nassau. Gorgeous! We stayed an extra night in Miami, and got to see the sights there which I loved especially the Everglades, finally ticked off my bucket list!  I am so far behind, and still editing these images, but here are a few from that trip.

And that I think, just about brings us up to date. I ma super busy with work and have no other travel plans until Feb next year. Of course that might change! I am hoping to get out and about around the Province as the weather starts to improve, it has once again been a long Winter and we are currently in a dismal, grey and cold Spring. My In-Laws cam over last June for their first visit so I was out a lot last year snapping away, I hope to post some of those images in due course. I cannot claim to be the blogger I once was, but I will try and update every now and again!!

Leaving Miami

MSC Divina

Street Scenes from San Juan I

Snake Bird - The Everglades
Cats in Paradise - San Juan

Street Scenes from San Juan II

Wednesday, December 23, 2015

Merry Christmas

I haven't updated this blog since October...Shame on me! I am still here, alive and kicking...well alive anyway!

Firstly let me wish all of my followers, friends and family a very Merry Christmas. I have been in slow down mode here for quite some time now, as the days got shorter my hibernation began. I did order myself a SAD lamp to see if it would help with my terminally depressed state of mind, but as yet it has yet to make a difference. I am currently battling a rather nasty cold which came out of nowhere at the weekend. My throat has been so painful, but thankfully I am feeling a little better today. Rob and I attended Anne and Smiffy's annual open house at the weekend, as always a pleasure, just unfortunate that I was feeling so rough we had to leave early. I also attended our works do last week on Tuesday which was surprisingly good, I say surprisingly as I wasn't looking forward to it. It was held at a Dinner Theatre. It was somewhat corny but very enjoyable and the food wasn't bad either.

Hamish has recently been in for some work at the vets. Pretty much all his teeth are out now and he also had a cyst removed from his head. He had to wear the cone of shame for 10 long days! Poor boy. His stitches are out now and he is almost back to his handsome self again except for the missing fur on top of his head. He seems none the worse for wear and pretty happy now he has less teeth bothering him. Still hard to believe he is 18 years old as he sure doesn't look it and the way he wrestles with Shakespeare is pretty amazing.

The weather has been pretty kind to us so far, tomorrow and Christmas Day are supposed to be double digits. it's been a pretty English Winter thus far, grey and rainy but warm. I am sure that will all change. I believe I was saying the same thing this time last year and then from the second week in January the worst Winter in years hit us and continued hitting us until May! My Christmas wish would be to not see any snow all Winter, that would make me very happy.

I have been immersed in my Reality TV of course and have really enjoyed the Apprentice, I'm a Celeb, Strictly and on this side of the pond Survivor.

Here's an interesting fact...It's all been about the letter J this year....Celeb BBUK, James won, Survivor, Joe (loved him) should have won but Jeremy did, Joseph won the Apprentice and Jay won Strictly (loved him). I'm a Celeb, George from the band Union J almost won! I reckon 2015 was a lucky year for all things J!

And if you are remotely interested I predicted that Jay would win Strictly Come Dancing in Week 1.
(That almost never happens when I make predictions, My picks usually make the finals but never win).

While I am talking telly...My award for the best series I have watched this year (non reality based) goes to The Detectorists. What a superb show, understated comedy at it's very best. I will leave you with the teaser of a trailer from the first series (I am a little late finding this show). Whatever you are doing over the holidays, have a great time and eat loads!

Sunday, November 1, 2015

Happy Halloween

I know I am a day late, but better late than never!
Only about 20 trick or treaters came a calling last night...Which means plenty of treats left over for us to finish off! I was surprised how few there were as it was the perfect weather day, sunny all day and not too cold last night at all. The ones that did come round had some pretty creative and cute outfits. They were all gone by around 8.30 pm.

It's been a busy week this week which involved getting the tires changed over for winter on the car, carving out pumpkins and on Wednesday a trip to the theatre.

About a week and a half ago I was stuck in traffic heading for work. I was listening to the radio and a competition question came on relating to a clip of music from a TV show. I instantly knew which show the clip was from and as I have the voice activated, hands free thingy in the car I thought instead of just shouting at the radio I would call in. After one mis-dial, I got though and was on the air, I was asked to ID the clip and I got it right...My answer...Hart to Hart. I won tickets for a show called Boom at the Nepune Theatre. The DJ said I was terribly British, doing an impression of me saying Hart to Hart in his best British accent. I was giggly and mortified. I have never phoned a radio station in my life, let alone won anything. I attribute this luck to a seagull pooping on me about 2 weeks ago! Might I add that is the 4th time now a seagull has pooped on me since I have lived here. So anyway Rob and I were theatre luvvies on Wednesday night. The show is fantastic. It is actually has quite the buzz surrounding it and is playing a huge amount of dates across Canada. It's a one man show played entirely by a very talented actor called Rick Miller who is supported by some very sophisticated multimedia, the show narrates 25 years of the Baby Boom era. It's so clever and without doubt the best thing I have ever seen at the theatre. He chats to the audience afterwards and encourages people to tell their stories and memories. Check out the website to see more of this! 

The weather for the most part has remained rather nice, the Fall colours have been spectacular this year. We did catch the tail end of a hurricane this week which unfortunately brought high winds an a lot of rain which knocked so many of the remaining leaves off the trees. After a nice day yesterday for Halloween, the clocks went back last night and today had been pretty gloomy and grey. It's just more confirmation of Winter being just around the corner!

This year's Pumpkin accompanied by Gourd Ghosts...
Which look grumpy rather than spooky

...And the night time edition of Grumpy Gourds

Fall Splendour at Petite Riviere

Return to Balmoral Grist Mill

Kayaks in the Park

Fall Reflections at Shubie Park

Monday, October 12, 2015

Happy Thanksgiving!

Historic Annapolis Royal
I bet you thought I had disappeared! I am still here, just busy with life and very lazy about updating the blog these days. I find it difficult to set enough time aside to sit down and ramble on! As it's Thanksgiving today here in Canada and we have a day off, I thought I would put in the effort and write a little something.

I have been out and about with my camera most weekends. This weekend I was back in Annapolis Royal again on the prowl for Fall Colours. The weather has for the most part has remained beautifully sunny and warm, although the temperatures have dropped at night now and we have had our first mild frost in the city. The trees are about 50-75% turned now and they look stunning. Earlier today Rob and I took a quick stroll around Shubie Park the water was still and the reflections gorgeous.

I was at the Pumpkin Farm last weekend and picked out this year's Pumpkin for carving. It will no doubt look the same as every other year, but it's bigger than the one we had last Halloween. I have pretty much bagged up all the candy ready for the trick or treaters as it's just another chore I don't want to have to do last minute. Also since I last updated the blog, Rob and I chalked up our 15th wedding anniversary...This shocks me. Where in did that time go! It only seems like yesterday we were in Vegas getting wed!

I am loving the new car, I think that's mainly the reason I have been out more than in. I love driving it around, (as long as it's out of the city), it's so smooth and economical on gas.

I am also up to my eyes in TV at the moment, so much to watch I don't really know where start. The Voice USA, Strictly, Dancing with the Stars and lest we not forget The Apprentice UK starts this week. I am also watching some US dramas. Quantico, How to get away with Murder, The Blacklist (always one of my faves) and an odd one for me, as I am certainly NOT a Batman fan, but I absolutely love the series...Gotham! I watched series one on Netflix and am now hooked on the current series on cable.

Now if you know me I am not one for sports, but I cannot help but be excited about the Toronto Blue Jays making the Play Offs. I understand a bit more about baseball now than I ever did before. For them to reach this stage they had to play (I think) around 126 games in the season. Now they are battling the best of the best. Having watched them play Miami earlier in the season in Toronto I feel I have more of a vested interest in seeing if they can bring home the trophy! Go Blue Jays Go!

I will leave you with some of my recent images. Click on any image to view larger...Go on, you know you want to!

Northwest Cove

Looking out on Fall, Annapolis Royal

Southwest Cove

Return to the Potting Shed - The Tangled Garden

Under the Apple Trees

Fall Reflections, Shubie Park

Sunday, September 6, 2015

Sunny Days Off!

Portrait of Prospect
It's been a glorious week weather-wise and I am very happy about that as I had almost the whole week off. It`s been a busy few days as I have been out and about (in the new motor) around the Province. Starting last weekend, on Saturday afternoon, Rob, Nancy and myself to a drive out to Terence Bay, Prospect and Peggy's Cove. It was our first real trip out in the new car, it was a lovely sunny afternoon until we got to Peggy's where it started to get a little grey and foggy. I had never been in the Buoy Shack there before as I have never seen it open, as it was, I ventured inside, what a delight, a real photographic treasure trove of nautical delights.

Tuesday Cheryl and I visited Ross Farm, a favourite of ours. I have been wanting to get back there for a while as I didn`t make it there last year. For a relatively small place, we spent a heck of a lot of time there taking photos. There were of course 2 adorable kittens there that I instantly fell in love with and they put on quite the show for Cheryl and I. They need homes, and have been neutered, I am pretty sure it won`t be too long before they are snapped up.

Thursday Anne, myself and Cheryl went to Annapolis Royal (second time there for me a the past few weeks). Both Cheryl and Anne hadn't been to the Gardens before and I wanted to go again. It was another scorching day I think the temperature was around 27 degrees and very humid. We did sweat quite a lot. The gardens were fabulous. I managed to get a few more different shots than last time. We spent the majority of the day there and then went for a bite to eat before heading across to Port-Royal. We really didn't have much time there as we got there so late, but even so, we crammed in a ton of photos!

It was about 9.30 pm by the time we got home as we meandered back via the slow road, stopping at a couple of places along the way. I can literally say I was knackered from the driving and the heat by the time I got in, but that didn't stop Cheryl and I getting up and heading out on Friday down to the South Shore. We stopped at Mahone Bay, Blue Rocks and Stonehurst. I even managed to help some Belgium tourists find Stonehurst which they were thrilled about. In the afternoon Cheryl and I headed over to see a friend of hers who lives in Rose Bay. Not a place that I am familiar with, but a very pretty area. We went to check out Hirtle Beach, and a couple of other local spots. Cheryl's friend's husband is a lobster fisherman, and they have the coolest shack down on the water. So we photographed that as well before heading back to the house and having something to eat. We left at around 5.30 and I got home around 7.30 pm. After another long day and late night I slept in yesterday and and in the late afternoon Rob and I drove to Anne's parents cottage on the Eastern Shore. It was another beautiful day, and we sat out on the dock eating chatting and watching the sunset. It really is gorgeous there and so very peaceful, with just the crickets and the waves lapping, the perfect soundtrack to end the day.

This weekend is a long weekend as tomorrow is Labour Day. So I have one more day to relax before going back to work. Poor Robert hasn't seen much of the new car as I have been driving it pretty much every day. I love it. It's so smooth and comfortable to drive and ride in. Robert reckons it has Velcro seats as every time I drive home in the evening from work I just sit in it for 10 minutes before getting out (how very sad!) I am sure the novelty will where off soon. The only thing our car doesn't have is a remote start for Winter, which would be handy...Eh Smiffy?

Smiffy has a 4x4, he bought it not long after moving over here. Anne uses it too, they share it. She drives it to work and colleague noticed the double key fob the other day and asked it that was a remote starter on there, she said I hope not...But sure enough it was and all last winter both of them spent ages getting boots and coats on to go out and warm up the car every morning when all they had to do was press a button from the comfort of their warm house! Oh how that made me laugh!

I have load of images to post from last weekend and this week, Here's just a few. Click on any image to view larger.

Stonehurst Cove
Down by the Hen House - Ross Farm
Inside the Buoy Shack - Peggy's Cove
Northwest Cove
Strung Out - Rose Bay

Adorable Kitten at Ross Farm
Scenes from the cottage yesterday evening
The New Motor!

Sunday, August 23, 2015


So this is quite rare these days...2 posts in 2 weeks.
This post is more of a follow up to last week regarding the car subject! We took ours for it's oil change this week, and Rob the mechanic, got it up on the ramp and showed my Rob the full horror that was going on underneath. I truly think that Rob had been in denial about how bad it was and how quickly we needed to think about getting another vehicle. Our poor old Focus is pretty much on it's last legs and fit for the knackers yard.

With his mind made up Rob then proceeded to explore more options and deals at various places on Friday. By Friday evening, I thought, we might be investing in another Ford, but by Saturday, we had decided to go a different route. We have decided to lease a Toyota Corolla. Leasing we think is by far the best option for us and with all the extra warranties we took out we are pretty much covered for everything, including breakdowns in the whole of North America. It's a nice car, and for any potential visitors, it has 4 doors instead of just the two that the focus had which will make things so much easier. It has heated seats, mirrors, air con, CD and bluetooth. It's a nice slate grey which actually has a hit of blue about it. I think it will be a little easier to find in the Walmart car park than silver, which seems to be the norm round here, Rob and I could never remember where we parked the Focus in the sea of silver. Best of all the Toyota deal at the moment is $2500 trade in on any vehicle. And there is no way we would have got that anywhere else for ours. All being well we just have to pick it up on Tuesday. Then we just have to find the money to pay for it every month. Good thing is at the end of five years we just hand it back for another new one or possibly buy it outright.

It will save us money on car hire for road trips and CAA so every cloud and all that!
Will try and post a photo if it next week. Until than more photos from last week.
Big congrats this week to Blake and Robyn who have just got engaged!

Walking in the Past at Sherbrooke Village

Chronic Weaknesses (Apothecary, Sherbrooke Village)

Historic Gardens, Annapolis Royal

Blacksmiths Shop, Sherbrooke Village

Sunday, August 16, 2015

Days Off

To the Beach
I do hope dear readers you are still following. It seems to take me forever to get round to updating the blog these days. Due in part to the fact I have had nothing much to write about.

Rob and I have a few financial issues right now, One is a complicated matter to do with his work van and the tax people...Which I might add was nothing to do with him, it was because the firm he works for got audited. It really is so stupid and way to long and complicated to go into. The other problem we have is that our car is on the way out. It needs so much money spent on it to put it right that it makes more sense to get another one. There in lies the rub as we don't have the cash and cannot agree on anything. We are however toying with the idea of leasing rather than buying. Having had a chat with one of the sales people in the Honda showroom, leasing does seem the way to go, bearing in mind you can lease to buy or upgrade after the 5 year lease is up. We are now thinking about a Chevy of some sort as their leases are shorter and a tad cheaper. Who knows?! It's a mine field, but one things for sure we will have to do something before our MVI is due next year or if the car packs up in the meantime.

This week was Robert's birthday so he and I took Thursday and Friday off work to make a nice long weekend. The weather has been fantastic for the whole four days so no complaints here.

Thursday we drove to Annapolis Royal and visited the Historical Gardens, which neither of us had been to before. It was superb, by far the best gardens I have visited in Nova Scotia. It's rather formal and so pristine, it reminded me of home and the National Trust gardens I used to love wandering around. The colours and planting were spectacular. I would highly recommend it if you are ever visiting this Province. From there we went to Port-Royal Historical Site. You may remember I went there last year with Anne, but Robert hadn't been. I enjoyed my second visit there as much as my first. We meandered our way back along the mountain roads, until we finally hit Wolfville where we went for a lovely dinner at Paddy's Pub (one of my favourite out of town places to eat). I have to say we were shattered when we got home as it had been a long, hot day.

Friday on Rob's birthday, still tired from the day before we got up early again and headed along the Eastern Shore about 2 and a half hours to Sherbrooke Historical Village. We stopped briefly on route at Sheet Harbour, where I finally photographed the incredible waterfall/river there. I think it was once the sight of a pulp mill. Rob and I hadn't visited Sherbrooke since 2010, so it was nice to re-visit this rather charming place. It was another hot one and we got tired out pretty quickly. We ended up leaving the village grabbing and ice cream and heading home around 4.30ish. On the way back we stopped for a quick walk along Taylor Head Beach. I think this is my favourite beach. It's flat and long, with lovely dunes. I did dip my toes in the water and yes it was freezing.

Saturday it was vets day! Off we went with the boys for check ups and vaccinations. Shakespeare got a bit whingy when he had to have some blood taken, but other than that he was a complete suck up with the girls in there. (They adore him). However he is too fat. He has to go on a strict diet. The reason he has got so big, is because we have been trying to put weight on Hamish as he needs the bulk as his muscle mass is starting to go now as he is an old man. Hamish doesn't eat all his food and before you know it Shakespeare is in there like a ninja finishing it off. As for Hamish, he seems to be doing okay, he had put on a little weight, but OMG did he make a scene in there hissing and snapping, and the girls barely touched him. He is due to have more teeth out in December, so when he gets put under they will give him a full exam them. He is so bad at the vets now they have a big X on his notes saying under no attempt take his temperature. He is the original Grumpy Cat these days.

Today (Sunday) I have done nothing at all, it's been great. I caught up on my soaps and romped through the latest series of Hell on Wheels on Netflix, such a superb series! Rob has been cleaning the guttering outside and at 4.30 pm we decided to go to the lake for a quick swim, it was lovely and refreshing.I heard crickets whilst by the lake, I love the sound of them but for me they herald the fact that Summer will soon be drawing to a close, once they stop chirping the nights will get cooler and the leaves will start to change once more.

Still Life at Port-Royal Historical Site

Beautiful Sherbrooke Village

Gorgeous Property and Garden spotted at Granville Ferry

The magnificent Historical Gardens at Annapolis Royal
The River at Sheet Harbour

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