gallows cove

I’m backtracking to March – when Chris and I walked the Gallows Cove Trail in Torbay. The snow had barely gone, in fact at the time, there was still snow and ice in the shade of the woods.  Regardless, the sun had come out and it felt glorious to be outside.

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I only heard about this trail a couple of years ago when my friend was visiting from Ottawa and we were in search of an iceberg. In case you don’t know where it is, you’ll see the sign for Gallows Cove Road just after you drive by Foodland (if you are coming from town). Turn right and you’ll end up at the trail. 5-Torbay

Looking back on these photos, I can almost smell the fresh, clean, crisp, air. I LOVE the deep blue of the ocean and the gradient blues of the sky.

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We only walked for a hour or so – but I heard you can walk all the way around the harbour.  I’ll have to go back and find out more at a later date. Happy Trails.

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oh what a hike!

IMG_8821We’ve had a really cold start to summer. Some are blaming it on the capelin being late rolling, some are just chaulking it up to living in this unpredictable place. Regardless of the reason for the cold, when we finally do get a good day, you have to take full advantage and get outside.

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One day last week we arrived home from work and it was warm and sunny (well, it wasn’t completely freezing).  So we headed to Quidi Vidi Gut and started up the path for the Sugarloaf hike.  This hike takes you from Quidi Vidi all the way to Logy Bay, but we only did the first part of the hike, up to the lookout at the top of the stairs.IMG_8796
At the beginning of the hike, it is not easy to determine the exact path to take.  There are a few options it seems, but you can’t really get lost.  By the time you get higher up the hill, the path is more clearly marked.

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The view gets more and more stunning, the higher you climb (perhaps that goes without saying but it seems worth mentioning as we kept stopping to take photos and just soak it all in). The trail has a variety of lovely paths – some sections take you through the trees and other sections are on top of the rocks where you look down on Quidi Vidi, or out towards Cape Spear.

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When we arrived at the top of the staircase, we could even see an iceberg in the distance.  My iPhone camera did not capture that very well, but it was a little extra treat for us!

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We both absolutely loved this trail.  I had done it a couple of years ago, but it was Chris’ first time.  It is his favourite hike so far.

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We want to go all the way to Logy Bay next time, but that will take a little more time and planning to drop a car off at the other end.  Definitely do-able though.  Can’t wait!

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the grand ‘ole duke of york

Staircase#2

Staircase #2 on the North Head Trail is the toughest for me. When I hike the North Head trail, I try to do this staircase without stopping, because frankly, if I stop, I may never start moving again. So to keep my momentum going, I sing “The Grand ‘Ole Duke of York” in my head.  I’m pretty sure the song is from my Girl Guide days. Don’t worry – I don’t sing it out loud, but if you step on each beat of the song, you have to sing it 3 times to ascend the staircase, with a couple extra steps left over at the end.

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So next time you hike this trail, at Staircase #2, think of me and The Grand Ole Duke. You’re welcome.

 

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!

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

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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.

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There were a few other people out enjoying the view.

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

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Good for the soul.

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Happy Sunday.

dealing with disappointment

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For dancers, injuries are a part of life. Every dancer knows this. But knowing intellectually in your head is an entirely different thing than knowing in your heart. Especially when it happens right before a performance.

Our youngest is smack dab in the middle of dealing with this disappointment right now. A partnering injury recently has left her in pain and sore and not able to dance.   So the show this weekend is just not going to happen for her. When you have worked so hard and are so pumped for something, it is like someone letting the air out of your balloon. No fun.

Don’t get me wrong, we are counting our blessings that nothing more serious happened. And she will recover and be fine (thank goodness). But we are all a little sad about it. In the big picture this is really only a blip, we know. But honestly it is still a drag.

I heard this quote by Eckhart Tolle and it seems so fitting right now for so many reasons.

Most people treat the present moment as if it were an obstacle that they need to overcome. Since the present moment is Life itself, it is an insane way to live.

So injuries (and disappointments) are part of life itself. And in the big scheme of things, this one is pretty minor.

Thank heavens for that.

middle cove beach

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Sunday we took a drive out to Middle Cove. Surprisingly enough, my honey had NEVER been there! I could hardly believe it, although he is from the west end of St. John’s, so maybe it isn’t so surprising. I think the last time I was there was the summer after grade 12 for a bonfire.

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Is there anything better than skimming rocks and listening to the waves on a Sunday morning?

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Below are some pics to share with you. I don’t have a whole lot to say about them, other than it was a lovely, peaceful morning with my peeps.

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I love the colour of the beach rocks. Patrick makes me smile too.

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hanging on for dear life

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Fall is my absolute favourite season. I love cozy fall sweaters, wearing my fave boots again (delicious!) and the routines of school days and kids activities are all settling into a comforting rhythm. It’s that magical time of the year when the fall colours are at their most exquisite – golden yellows, burnt oranges and rich browns. The remaining leaves on the trees are hanging on for dear life. Knowing that a swift wind or rainfall will all but wipe them out for the season.

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When we lived in Ottawa, fall wasn’t complete without a hike in Gatineau park. The fall colours in Quebec are simply glorious. Although Fall here in St. John’s is not the same at all, there is still beauty all around in a uniquely Newfoundland way. My son and I were reminded of this today when we walked on the Rennie’s River Trail this past weekend.

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The Rennie’s River trail is an easy trail to walk.  It doesn’t get your heart pumping with exertion like the Northead Trail does, but it is a lovely walk and wonderful for walking your dog too.  There are garbage bins all over the place and there is even a station with little baggies for your dog’s business if you have forgotten yours. There were lots of In Memorium stones and benches on the side of the path. I think it is a perfect way to remember someone special to you. Who wouldn’t want to be remembered in such an uplifting environment.

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You can hear the water rushing by as you follow the trail. So peaceful.

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I hope the leaves can hang on for just a little longer.

girl’s night

Last Friday night I invited some girl friends over to see our place and have a visit. I used a Pinterest board to keep track of my plan.  There was only 4 of us, so I didn’t need loads of food, but I wanted to make sure I wasn’t overdoing things and that I had a good mix.  Since I am a visual person (as most of us are) I LOVE that Pinterest allows me to see my plan at a glance and even link to recipes and notes.  If you want to check out my Girls Night Pinterest board just click here.20131026-114955.jpg

I love these little individual crudités cups – very colourful and fun to eat.  If you follow me on Instagram, you may have already seen these.

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Another of my go-to appetizers is these caprese salad bites. The bocconcini is my favourite part – mixed with the basil and grape tomatoes – YUM!

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I used dark chocolate to dip the strawberries. I melted white chocolate to “drizzle” over the dark chocolate, but it plopped more than drizzed lol.  Still delicious but not as pretty as the photo online .

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I found this website and LOVED the signs she used.  She has free downloads – you can click here to find them and download them yourself.  So fun!  Below you can see the prosciutto wrapped aged cheddar.  Now this is one of my absolute faves to have with a glass of wine on the weekend and my family loves them too.  So I made a few extra and left them in the fridge.  The only issue is that I bought mint flavoured toothpicks!!  I didn’t notice Friday night, but Saturday night when we pulled out the extras, I couldn’t figure out at first, why they tasted funny.  Take it from me, mint does NOT work with this lol.  I guess I still have some work to do, to be a Hostess with the Mostess. (btw: the Leek and Goat cheese brule looks much nicer when it has been baked…. I took the photo before I popped it in the oven).

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Did you notice my food signs?  I used the Stampin’ Up! Thankful Tablescape kit and the Chalk Marker to make them. So easy and they added a nice touch to the display! Click here if you would like to order one for yourself.

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My lovely friends brought me some Champagne, Bagels from Georgetown Bakery and these sensational flowers from The Flower Studio.  I’m a lucky lady.

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What is your favourite appetizer to make when you have company over?  Leave a comment in the blog comments to let me know. Christmas is coming and we could all use some ideas!

cape spear

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Thanksgiving Monday we all headed out to Cape Spear, the most Easterly point of North America – the closest you can walk to Ireland without getting wet. When we left our house, it was cloudy and the weather wasn’t that promising, but by the time we picked up my parents and started walking around Cape Spear, the sun came out and it was simply glorious! It was chilly, but in a crisp, fall way – fresh and invigorating.

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There are signs all over the place warning people to stay on the dedicated trails. It is so tempting to walk down to the rocks and be close to the waves, but NOT a good idea. People have drowned. The waves can be unpredictable and are very powerful. Incredible to witness, but only safely from the trails.

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There are gun emplacements/bunkers that are so interesting for photos. We had fun taking some shots with the kids.

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The lighthouse was built in 1836 and is the oldest surviving lighthouse in Newfoundland and Labrador.

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It really was a magnificent day. I can’t possibly fit in all the photos I took. Some of these photos are from my iphone and some were taken by my Dad.  Thanks for sharing Dad! I am still so happy to be living close to my parents – they are pretty awesome.

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Cape Spear is a must-see if you are visiting St. John’s.  Another stunning vista to add to the long list around here.

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