Beautiful British Columbia on Caffeine

Everette and Mitchell are once again in BC working their buns off….and try and take time to visit family and a few friends.  Driving up island Everette got a visit in with his sister+  and then yesterday he was able to meet his mom and niece, Tasha….and if I say so myself, Grandma J looks happy to have some of her Boys around!  Everette is her only son; Mitchell, her eldest grandson….actually, our 3 boys are her only grandsons!

Johnsons

They picked a picture perfect day today for traveling BC Ferries to the mainland.  Work, and more work.  And then off to Portland and back to us.  Busy week for the guys.  But an hour+ of quiet on the lazy ferry, Everette gets his Canadian/ferry treat…..a Coffee Crisp.  However, I have a suspicion he’ll be a bit too jittery to just sit and read that Branson book!!!

ferry

Have I told you recently, Everette and Mitchell, how much we appreciate ALL you do for us?  All of your hard work  (and God-awful hours) to provide for us…..a Life We Enjoy!!  THANKS!!!!

Week in Review 10/8/14

I remember as a child the days of summer seemed endless.

We frolicked barefoot in the cool grass;

jumped through nondescript sprinklers…a sprinkler was a sprinkler, not a crocodile or mammoth or anything but a sprinkler;

rode our bikes tirelessly to the neighbourhood corner store that was neither on the street corner nor in our neighbourhood;

ate Sweet Tarts and got Double-Bubble for 2 cents;

pulled wings off of leather jackets (that’s what we called those things that look like mosquitoes on steroids but don’t suck your blood);

hid under scratchy junipers or climbed inside the laurels to hide until the opportune time to Kick the Can.

Nearly every Saturday our family of 7 would head south across the international border to plunge the boat and our bodies into the waters of Whatcom Lake where Dad considered learning to water ski mandatory for all of us.  I loved the water, thinking I’d like to be reincarnated as a dolphin one day (or that maybe I had already been one in a former life) but I resented being forced to learn to water ski.

I wonder what my kids will remember about their own childhood summers?

Layne and Rauchelle remember plunging their heads into the ice cold waters of Englishmen River every Saturday night in preparation for going to church the next morning.  We were building houses, and there were no bathing facilities on the property so we would trek down to the river to clean.   Clearing salal and roasting banana slugs.  Building forts and throwing sticks for Jake.

I’m sure Layne and Rauchelle also remember going to Long Beach with various cousins, sleeping under lean-tos & having snake races.

The younger bunch, I’m not sure what their summer memories will be.  Countless BC evenings at Spider Lake or Sunny Beach, geocaching in the Jeep, building sandcastles and digging up the sandy backyard until hitting pipes in the septic field.  Heritage Days and Canada Days, creating S’mores and memories with the Schwartz while adults compared their gardens.  Playing ‘Pretty Underwear’.

Nova Scotia days learning to sail, celebrating Acadia Days, touring mainland NS and PEI, walking Pt Michaud one more time.  Anders taking his Uncle’s car for a spin (oops!) and the family trip to Niagara Falls.

A Colorado summer of building houses and boats, driving to Denver and the Great Sand Dunes and down to Albuquerque to pick up Marin (and her mommy) for six glorious weeks.  River swimming, gondolas, hot springs and wild horses.

And here we are again back in beautiful British Columbia.

This IS the  summer of 2014:  The Traveling Family on the Hamilton Hobby Farm.

Charlotte

Charlotte

No-name

No-name

Anders on another hay ride

Anders on another hay ride

Ditto

Ditto

Keisha helping Gaelyn get the saddle up and over

Keisha helping Gaelyn get the saddle up and over

Ecetera

Ecetera

This weeks posts….slim pickin’s

Gaelyn masters the golf cart

Parenting Roles Get Flipped

Barrier to Learning

Stinking Hot and Loving It In Beautiful British Columbia

Maybe its getting too hot for a campfire, but I am loving this new Summer Weather.  Gorgeous blue skies, penetrating heat, a cool breeze in the shade.  What’s not to love??  This isn’t called Beautiful British Columbia for nothing!!

Laars trying to make the bunny where a paper hat when it would rather wear an authentic cowboy hat!

Laars trying to make the bunny wear a paper hat when it would rather wear an authentic cowboy hat!

Honeysuckle

Honeysuckle

A new couple at the farm (Laars and Anders)

A new couple at the farm (Laars and Anders)

Cool trails if need be.  Several degrees cooler down there.

Cool trails if need be. Several degrees cooler down there.

Not too hot for a campfire after the sun goes down.  Roast marshmallows, share a drink, chat under the stars.  I'm creating sparks so Toveli can take cool pics.  Perfect summer.

Not too hot for a campfire after the sun goes down. Roast marshmallows, share a drink, chat under the stars. I’m creating sparks so Toveli can take cool pics. Perfect summer.

 

Onto the Island

The kids always love the BC ferry ride though I loathed it particularly when the children were little and I was pregnant.  It was always toooo long of a trip.  But now its much more enjoyable for all of us.

Coastal Inspiration

Danaka wrote messages on the kids fingers

Danaka wrote messages on the kids fingers

card game happening

card game happening

views along the passage

views along the passage

approaching Duke Point south of Nanaimo, BC

approaching Duke Point south of Nanaimo, BC

The kids and I came to the island without Everette as he still had business to do in Vancouver.  This was the land where things seemed so much more familiar, where there was some new-ness but yet it was very comfortable driving the Island Highway.  I’m not feeling ‘at home’ really, but familiar.

‘At Home’ is in my heart and with my family.  It doesn’t feel like any geographical place in particular.

Though the closest place might be hanging out at the Ortwein’s.  Not because of the house but because of the people.  Celebrating life and death with these people over 18 yrs worth and the addition of 12 live children to the mix….feels a lot like home.

Lisa O

Lisa O

Out for a good jump, Johnson's and Ortweins plus Annalise (not to be confused with O's Annalee!)

Out for a good jump, Johnson’s and Ortweins plus Annalise (not to be confused with O’s Annalee!)

Maret & Annalee helping prep supper

Maret & Annalee helping prep supper

Isaiah eating early supper to head out with the boys for golf lessons.

Isaiah eating early supper to head out with the boys for golf lessons.

We left Maret at O’s for the night so she could attend the high school the following day with Annalee.  Let’s just say, it wasn’t as successful a day as visiting the middle school in Sooke for 2 days.  Maret isn’t at all tempted at signing up for next year!!

 

Art & History on Wall Space

3D water scene on the outside of a house.

3D water scene on the outside of a house.

Living for years on the British Columbia coast one gets used to seeing art of all sorts in all kinds of places.

 I love it.

Adds life, a message, personality.

So seeing art in various places and in large scale is exciting and beautiful.  All over the Lake area we see paintings outside private homes and businesses adding vibrant colours and design.

mural on houseThere are artisans everywhere, much like on Salt Spring Island, BC.  Everybody has a creative side to their personality and here they find a place to express it.  Much of it here is from expats who in retirement find the time they always wanted and use it for their hobbies.

We popped our heads inside this coffee shop/bakery were we discovered these creations from cardboard!

cardboard tower

cardboard tower

cardboard boat

cardboard ship

In many towns throughout Mexico we have seen historical murals and lessons painted on public buildings in very prominent places.  Like these on the town plaza in Ixtlahuacan de Los Membrillos….

Historical figures of Mexico's past

Historical figures of Mexico’s past

Mexico's stories for everybody to read, learn and honour.

Mexico’s stories for everybody to read, learn and honour.

Reminds me of the mural town of Chemainus, remembering the local history.