Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Itching to Hitching

We are off tomorrow on the four hour drive east from the coast, over the mountains, and into the Okanagan Valley of British Columbia.  Well known for it desert like temperate climate and great Canadian vineyards and wines, we plan to spend 12 days or so catching up with good friends, family, and attending a wedding.
Pulled it forward out of its gated compound on the side of our home....
Opened the slides and checked out all systems....
Let the loading begin!
It took little effort and time to hook up and pull the 5th wheel forward onto the driveway.  We began loading in earnest - especially in the galley where Jeanette made good time re-stocking the pantry and loading the two refrigerators.
Sliding pantry nearly completed.
It's always fun to open up the slides and check out the systems only to find that everything worked the way it was meant to.  Yeah!  We have loaded our clothing too.
We will be heading to Peachland, BC.  We will be staying in an RV Park on the edge of the large Lake Okanagan - just south of the primary interior city of Kelowna.

Our daughter, son in law and baby Easton will join us on Thursday.  They will stay with us through the weekend when we attend a family wedding in Summerland - about 20 minutes south from Peachland.
A hiking trail near our home
It wasn't all work in loading the RV.  Jeanette and I did manage to get one hike in that took us along some nice horse hobby farms. This took place on Saturday afternoon.  Lovely hike through some really pleasant countryside.
Grazing cattle.
Well wrapped hay that keeps fresh...
We spotted these two bald eagles, in the photo below, who were scouting for field mice.  They made good with their hunt.

Jeanette got to whisper to a couple of friendly horses along the way.
Below is one example of the many hobby farms that dot this south Langley area.
On Sunday afternoon we took a motorcycle ride north toward the Fraser River.  We had heard that it was running high, with the spring melt from the mountains to the east.  It did not disappoint. The waters were running fast and high.  No threat of spilling its banks yet.
From our observation area along the mighty Fraser River, we headed west to the former pioneering capital of BC - the town of Fort Langley - for a well earned coffee....while enjoying the afternoon sun.

We look forward to hitching up and heading out, mid morning tomorrow - Wednesday.  We'll report more from the sunny Okanagan (we hope it is sunny) in later blogs.

Thanks for dropping in.

Saturday, May 26, 2012

Plenty of Activities....and a Party!

It has been a busy time since our last post.  
A surprise tea pot for a former co-worker.
Jeanette held a mid-day get together with several of her former nursing gang.  That happened this past Wednesday. The event centered around Judy (holding the bag) who was visiting from Thunder Bay, Ontario. It was a fitting occasion to get the nurses together to share some lunch with laughter - and lots of it!
Judy's special tea pot (L-R) Marg, Judy, Cynthia and Lorraine.
A few days back Jeanette got a call from the hospital she worked at and they were short staffed. She agreed to pull a shift on her preferred surgical floor.  Jeanette will accept to work the occasional shift (although she is retired) to maintain her nursing registration.

She found the tea pot that belonged to Judy, in the staff lounge, and chose to return it to her at the gathering.  Having retired, several years back, Judy was truly surprised to be reunited with her favourite tea pot.

Taken in our back yard.
We've been working on plans to change out our back yard and, although it is a long term plan, some things are taking shape.  Jeanette has moved a few plants and trees around and it's showing some nice results.  More on that in later blogs.
It was party time!  Getting in the groove with Easton.
Our daughter celebrated her 30th birthday yesterday.  Husband Trevor had organized a back yard Bar-B-Que and games night.  That took place last evening.  Over 30 friends and family came out to celebrate.  Jeanette and I joined in and prepared some of the food stuffs and I offered to take over the Bar-B-Que to allow Trevor to play host.
The birthday girl.
Jeanette baked and prepared the cupcake birthday tree.  That was a big hit.
Trevor, friend (and games organizer extraordinaire)  Nicole...and we're not sure what Ginette was doing here!
Ginette with good friend Tia....with Easton sound asleep
Early on in the festivities.
I offered to take over the Bar-B-Que duties....
Surprise visit from long time friends who live in Edmonton, Alberta - The Hains
At the ready to blow the candles.  HAPPY BIRTHDAY, GINETTE!
Friends and family looking on....
Trevor was trying to prevent Ginette from blowing the candles before it was time to do so!
It was a fitting party to celebrate Ginette's entry to the 30's.  The weather was fantastic.  It was a bright and sunny early evening that transformed into a nice warm night.

Today will be spent on building shelving in our back yard shed while Jeanette prepares her list of things to load into the 5th wheel in preparation for our departure to the BC Okanagan this coming Wednesday.  More on that later.

Thanks for dropping by.

Monday, May 21, 2012

Typically Wet May Long Weekend!

From dry to wet, the May long weekend in Canada - on the west coast - delivered the usual rains to dampen weekend campers, golfers, and other outdoor activities. It sure seems to be a historical curse that the May long weekend will deliver rains.  This year did not disappoint.  It rained....and continues to do so, as of this writing.

I had to cancel our T-time this Monday morning.  The rain - that started mid-day yesterday - would not go away.
This was Saturday though! 
Knowing that rain was on the way for Sunday, Jeanette and I rode east into the Fraser Valley on Saturday.  Taking all the back roads, we were not bothered by the long weekend holidayers who were scurrying to get somewhere on the major freeways and highways.
Saturday delivered balmy temperatures.
Meandering through different roads, we ended up in Harrison Hot Springs.  It was busy in the resort town and the RV parks displayed 'no vacancy' signs.
Peaceful and serene.
Jeanette was able to get this shot without too many tourists in the view.
We watched as this boat got loaded up with beer and food fare.
The folks below were having fun with their fishing rods.  We did not witness any catch but this lake does produce so I'm sure some left with a few lake trout.

This foot peddle canoe was towing the girl in the kayak as she was taking photos.  
We walked around the area for over an hour before leaving for another back country ride that would take about two hours to get us back home.  Although Harrison Hot Springs is 70 minutes or so from home, the back roads slow us up and allow us to enjoy the surroundings.
Harrison Lake
Another view from the town centre, looking north
A few folks enjoying the peaceful surroundings while the play area in the background had no takers.  We believe it was closed because the waters are still too cold. 

I rode to our favourite Tim Horton's, on Sunday morning, where our group of guys meet to solve the world's problems.  The grey skies rolled in and by 11:00 am, I was back on my motorcycle heading for home before the anticipated rains.

Saturday morning visit with Easton
Before our Saturday ride, we dropped in on Easton and his folks. Jeanette delivered some muffins she had baked and we got to have some cuddle and face time with our favourite little fella.

Today will be a quiet holiday Monday on the home front.  The skies are sill grey and the light rains continue.

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Sunny Spring Scenes & Activities...

Countryside vegetable market - Abbotsford, BC
Jeanette and I are changing up our back yard and one tree we would like to add, near the outdoor pond, is a palm tree that can thrive here.  There are a few that can so we rode out to have a look.  We're now convinced that a palm tree will dot our back yard landscape in the near future.

Riding through the countryside, on a hot and sunny day, is always a treat.
The raspberry fields are thriving.
Farmers are busy with cutting and baling the first of three or four hay crops.
Bright eyed.  Easton spends more time looking around and getting to know his surroundings.
Jeanette was quick to offer to look after Easton when our daughter needed to run some errands.  Anytime!  
The Abby in Mission, BC.
Yesterday, friends came by to collect Jeanette and they headed north of Abbotsford, across the Fraser River, to check out the Abby in Mission.  It sits high above the river, offering great views of the Fraser Valley and the mountains in the horizon.

I, on the other hand, was busy with a project in White Rock.  Too bad for that!  They had a nice day out and it would have been nice to join them.  "A la prochaine." (At another time)
This is a Catholic Institution
Too bad for the haze.
Enjoying lunch at an outdoor market.  L-R Lorne, Mariette & Lucille.
After hiking in and around the Abby, the group settled for lunch at an open market just south of the Fraser River.  It is one of our favourite markets in the area.  The fresh vegetable produce, seafood, fresh meats and baked goods is a draw.  We especially like their frozen beef burgers.  When barbecued,  they retain their high beef and low fat content. 
Jeanette and I remember when this market was a farmer selling produce out of the back of his truck.  It is a going concern now!
Today is my turn to visit our dentist for a regular check up and cleaning. I plan to motorcycle there.  After that, I plan to visit a good friend who is in hospital and recovering from surgery. Jeanette, Easton and Ginette will be off dress shopping for our son's wedding this coming September.
New parents - Ginette and Trevor with Easton (now one month old)
Well, today is golf day.   We T-off at 3:40 this afternoon.  It's shaping up to be a great day.....ah.....other than the visit to the dentist, that is.

Thanks for dropping in.