greek traditions

IMG_8464 When dh and I were university students, we traveled to Greece after one of my work terms in Europe.  What we both remember most about the trip, is that every day at sunset, the entire island stopped to watch the sun sink into the sky. IMG_8470 I literally mean everyone.  Tourists and locals alike, all stopped in their tracks for the quick few minutes it took for the sun to disappear. IMG_8480 We love that ritual. There is something so peaceful and calming about it. Hearing the waves crash onto the shore while the sun sets, is even more magical. IMG_8484 It makes you feel so fortunate.  And complete somehow. IMG_8491 Summer is here. IMG_8495

love birds

20140716-063007-23407316.jpg

Aunt Hilda used to call us love birds. I was 23 when we got married and I was totally and completely over-the-top in love.  We used to have a silent signal to tell each other “I love you” when we were in a crowd. I knew in my heart that we were soul mates – meant to be. Young, silly, sticky sweet love.

20140716-063006-23406962.jpg

Things have changed. Two children, parenting, career changes and life decisions tends to tone things down just a little. We haven’t used that signal in years. My definition of true love has shifted, over the last 20 years. Now, I am fortunate to witness him be an incredible Dad to his children, a fun playful Uncle to his nieces and nephews and still a loving partner to me. I love how kind he is and thoughtful of others around him. I love that he still makes me laugh and sometimes I am the only one laughing at his jokes.  (Sometimes I am the only one rolling my eyes at his jokes too). Being with him still makes me happy.

IMG_3671

Happy Anniversary to my love.

 

breathtaking view

I was awake early on Sunday morning and I decided to get out of the house before the day got started with kid activities. I grabbed the camera and my Dad’s jacket that I borrowed from him and haven’t returned yet. (The jacket is a blue rain jacket that is perfect for keeping the cold wind away).  I’ll get it back to you soon Dad!

I headed to Fort Amherst.  As I came upon the path towards the lighthouse and caught a glimpse of the bergs, honestly it took my breath away. It sounds so cliche, but in person it is just so stunning!

FAIceberg

It was so therapeutic to be out in the wind, snapping pictures.

FAIcebergCU

Really I don’t have much to say – the photos pretty much speak for themselves. It was a calm way to spend a Sunday morning. Big happy sigh.

ThroughtheLighthouse

There were a few other people out enjoying the view.

IMG_7738

Are you tired of hearing me say what a beautiful place this is???

FAShoreline

Good for the soul.

boatinnarrows

Happy Sunday.

iceberg quest

My friend and I booked a boat tour last Friday on Iceberg Quest Tours. They are located at Pier 6, near The Keg on the Harbourfront. When we arrived at the Pier, the gorgeous sun and the live onboard music greeted us. We knew it was bound to be an awesome afternoon!

IMG_7449

Taking a boat tour from the St. John’s Harbour, really gives you a new vantage point of the city.  You can see the Basilica, the Rooms, the Courthouse and lots more.

IMG_7469

We went by the Battery, with all the houses built right into the cliff.  We walk through the battery when we do the North Head Trail – it is such an interesting place.  According to the guide on the boat, many artists live in the Battery.

IMG_7475

This photo above was taken as we were just coming up on the narrows.  The rock is called Chain Rock and the story goes that during World War II, there was a big chain and a net of sorts that was strung from Chain Rock to Fort Amherst on the other side of the narrows, to keep the German U-boats out of the harbour.

IMG_7497

When we got out of the narrows far enough we could see this HUGE iceberg right off the coast!  It really is unbelievable when you see these in person!

IMG_7531

See the line going down through the berg?  It looks as though a big piece will crack off. These ice bergs are known as growlers because they make growling noises as they melt and air is released.

IMG_7535

IMG_7541

There was quite a swell on and the boat was a rockin’. We really had to hold onto the rail a few times. So when we tried to get a selfie we were having trouble staying upright!

IMG_3438  IMG_7611

They are so majestic!  When you are looking at them it is so hard to remember that 90% of the iceberg is underwater!  The boat stayed a safe distance away from the icebergs.

IMG_7612

The teal colour you see just below the water is from the reflection of the sun.

MarBerg

Huge thanks to Iceberg Quest!   It doesn’t matter if you are a tourist or not, this is something not to be missed if you are in the area!

quick tour of st. john’s

I was lucky enough a couple of weeks ago to have a quick visit from a lovely friend from Ottawa. She had never been to St John’s before, so I needed to figure out where to take her to give her a good tour so she could she what St. John’s is all about.  She was working during the day, so we only had two evenings to fit everything in.

When I heard she was coming for a visit, there was one activity I KNEW for sure I wanted to do with her.  I picked her up at the airport and we made a bee-line to Signal Hill to do the North Head Trail. Amazingly enough, it was 19 degrees and completely sunny!!  GLORIOUS!

20140525-101050-36650323.jpgThere were lots of people out enjoying the fabulous weather on the trail. I was so happy to get to show off this wonderful place!  Truly it is my happy place!  We were cracking up laughing trying to take a selfie near Cabot Tower!

20140525-101050-36650415.jpg

We went for supper at Portobellos on Duckworth Street.  I had never been there before but I had heard the view of the Harbour and the Narrows was beautiful.  The food was good but the view really was incredible!

I was especially glad we had such amazing weather for the first evening, because when I woke up the next morning and looked out my window – I could hardly see across the street for the fog.  I mean it was true pea soup fog – so thick that visibility was really diminished.  My girlfriend was working out at the airport on the tarmac that day and she said they could hear the airplanes close by, but still couldn’t see them in the fog.  HA!  The weather is only one of the reasons this is definitely a unique place.

20140525-101052-36652981.jpgFor our second evening together I really wanted to go see an iceberg with her. It was an opportunity not to be missed – seeing an Iceberg is not something you do in Ottawa regularly.  So I checked out the Iceberg Finder website (LOVE THIS!) and realized there was an iceberg in Torbay.  We took a quick drive (15 – 20 mins from my house) and were able to see one!  I’m sorry my iPhone camera just does not do this justice – It really was beautiful! We swung by middle cove beach on the way back .

20140525-101052-36652317.jpgQuidi Vidi Village is very picturesque and worth a quick photo op. I think the fog made it look even more charming.

20140525-101051-36651366.jpgWe did a little shopping downtown to find some little treats for her to take home to her family.  She was so excited to see all the chocolate at Coffee & Company on Water Street!  She bought some Godiva chocolate to take home and treated K and I to a yummy truffle from the cabinet.  This is a wonderful locally owned and operated cafe – I knew that the coffee was delicious at Coffee & Company, but now I can attest that the chocolate is also FAB! If you haven’t been before, you need to go there!

20140525-101050-36650855.jpg

Honestly, I wasn’t sure about going for Fee & Chee (how do you spell that?) for supper but it seemed like the thing to do in St. John’s. We headed over to the landmark that is Ches’s and I ordered Fish with Chips, Dressing and Gravy (like you would) but my friend was not convinced about adding dressing to a meal.  So she ordered it on the side just to see.  I don’t think she would order it again but at least she can say she did once!

20140525-101052-36652417.jpgAfter doing a carpool run to bring K to dance we decided to end the evening with martinis at Basho.  For the record, the fancy drinks at Basho are the absolute BEST! I would not recommend you go and just order a rum and coke or a rye and ginger, or any run-of-the-mill drink.  You can get those anywhere…..   Pick one of the specialty drinks! They make your entire evening feel special just sipping on one of them!

20140525-101051-36651826.jpgThere are lots of places we didn’t get to visit and things we didn’t do, but considering we only had two evenings, I think we did well.  I LOVED having her visit!!  Next time she comes, we will hit Cape Spear and maybe Fort Amherst…..  Oh and there’s lots more I can think of!

Check out my friend’s blog at http://vmchick.wordpress.com/

 

 

shhhhhhhh!

matts concert

Did you go to church as a child? Have you ever been in church and been racked with those chest-heaving laughs that you just cannot let out, because you are in the dome of silence, also known as church? I have specific memories of sitting in the pew with both of my sisters and my mom shooting us dirty looks trying to telepathically scold us and let us know, without saying a word, that we had better start behaving.

I like to blame sister #2. (Ha! It’s my blog and I can blame who I want to!). I think sister #3 was a bit too young to initially be the cause of trouble in the church pew… at least according to my memory, sketchy as it is.

What is it about being in church that just makes you want to laugh when you shouldn’t? It seemed that all it took was one partially funny remark, and that would be it – you’d be biting your cheeks trying not to get noticed, eyes watering and shoulders jumping with internal giggles.

Tonight my son had his school music concert at Cochrane Street Church and I was sitting in a pew with my Mom on my left and sisters 2 & 3 on my right. I’m not even sure what started the laughter, but it began the millisecond we sat down. Once again I found myself attempting to behave in a church pew… and this time my mom was at least partially to blame! Instead of getting the evil eye from a parent, my husband was gazing down the row at the four of us with a confused face, not wanting to even know what was so funny.

We did manage to behave while the students were performing, though it was touch and go there for a while. The concert was lovely. And so much better having my mom and sisters with us.

Happy Sigh <and lots of happy giggles>