Tuesday, May 30, 2017

A wonderful lunch with Roger and Kerry yesterday at the English Bay Cactus Club

It was a gorgeous day and it was so great to see our very old friends from high school and university. Roger and Kerry had some business in the West End and took us out for lunch before heading out to Port Moody to see family.   Roger just got home from Ethiopia on Saturday, and they flew from Edmonton to Vancouver that morning.  I know they were both tired so it was very special that they made time to see us.  For a number of years Roger has been working on a project to reduce rates of maternal and newborn mortality in Ethiopia which has the highest rates in all of Africa. And he came bearing gifts from Ethiopia.  Thanks so much,  Roger.  I know I'm going to love wearing the shawl on our just slightly chilly summer evenings.

A handprinted card on goatskin.

A hand carved and painted wooden mask.

My shawl....I love the colours!

A hummingbird has built a nest in our backyard in Palm Springs!

Erna sent me this photo today.  I think we must give this hummingbird a name.

Monday, May 29, 2017

A wonderful day at Nicki and Stan's!

We went with Susan and Brian out to Nicki and Stan's place in Pitt Meadows yesterday.   They have a lovely townhouse overlooking the Fraser River and many wonderful trees and there is a super little village right by them with lots of services  and even a Buddha you can consult on a variety of issues!

It was the perfect temperature for sitting outside and we sat out the whole afternoon and evening.  Nicki made a wonderful dinner and Stan bar-b-q'ed  the pork tenderloin perfectly.  Nicki had made a strawberry and rhubarb pie just like my mom used to make.

Thanks so much for a super day,  Nicki and Stan.  And thanks to Susan who volunteered to drive so the rest of us could relax.  We had never been to Pitt Meadows and it was quite a beautiful drive seeing all those mountains all the way.  We arrived home just in time to see a wonderful sunset along Beach Avenue.

Nicki slaving away in the kitchen.

Sunday, May 28, 2017

Another beautiful day yesterday...

My Jane Austen group had their "Jane Austen Day" yesterday so that meant a catered lunch and two speakers.   Folks really went all out with decorations (my photo didn't turn out).  One of the speakers was excellent and the questions and comments from the audience are always the best part.   Thank you again,  Donna,  for introducing me to this really interesting group of people and it's fun for us to have a regular activity to go to together.

And it was such a beautiful evening and since we hadn't really celebrated our anniversary yet we went to Cloud 9 for dinner.  We really savoured the view as it all closes Sept 30 forever.   They are taking the hotel down and replacing  it with two condo towers.  I guess it's been about  30 years that we have been enjoying this wonderful revolving restaurant.   When we lived in Victoria we usually tried to go when we were in Vancouver.  For most of those years it was open for lunch as well as dinner so it made it easier.   The food has always been up and down (more down last night) but you can't beat the experience.  And we really enjoyed the great $7 tapas in the bar that they had for most of the time since we moved to Vancouver.

We even took my mother there after we had taken her to a musical at The Orpheum.  It was quite an experience for her.   Erna and Marvin,  you will remember your time there.

We'll probably get up to the bar a couple more times before it all disappears.

Saturday, May 27, 2017

Stanley Park Lawn Bowling Club first Bar-b-q

And even brass bands and dancing girls....well,  not really but they did have a band playing.  They were very good but VERY loud.  I don't think a band usually plays but this was the opening bar-b-q and there was a big crowd...a little overwhelming for the volunteers who were making it all happen.

It's certainly a good deal at $5 for a burger with your choice of beef,  chicken, salmon,  or sausage.   Salads, potato chips,  and all the trimmings were included.  There was even dessert but we were too late to get some.   Beer and wine were $4.

We met Maureen and Helmet there and had a lot of laughs.  It was a beautiful warm non windy evening....gorgeous.

Friday, May 26, 2017

Linda is having a great time in London

....and picked up her invitation yesterday to the Buckingham Palace Garden Party.  It's 26 C in London...almost that here today as we were sitting in the sun on the Sylvia Hotel patio having a flatbread and a brew.  We had a bit of Old Blighty ourselves yesterday as we went to "C-Lovers" in Horseshoe Bay for their "Ultimate Platter"  (fish and chips,  onion rings,  and prawns) and we of course added mushy peas.   They have outdoor seating at this one and we had a wonderful view of the mountains and ocean.

Photos from Linda....I can't publish the actual invitation until it's over (June 1)

Wednesday, May 24, 2017

Quite a difference in the weather....

We had incredible wind last night...wow....I don't think that was expected.  A lovely evening today so we decided to take in the music at The Sylvia.  Cole Petrone was playing and he just sang and played guitar and mainly took requests from the audience.  He's really very good.  And we were in a perfect position to watch the sun go down.

Our jet setting friends and family....

Richard is in London this week doing training.  I was pleased to get this email yesterday....yes,  I was worrying...it's my job as a mom!

Hi Mom,

I know with the recent attack in Manchester and the threat level being increased, you must be worried about me. Just wanted you to know that we arrived here in London safe and sound and will be walking or cabbing most places rather than taking the tube. 

Lots of love,


Linda flies to London today and the Garden Party at Buckingham Palace is June 1.  I'm so excited for her!

"I leave on Wednesday, arrive Thursday.  We go to Canada House at Trafalgar Square to pick up our tickets to the "big event" on Friday.  Saturday we're having dinner with old friends at Bexleyheath.  They've made a reservation at a steak place.  That's funny because Jean is vegetarian but they have lots of fish and pasta dishes.  Monday I have tickets to 42nd Street at the Drury Theatre in downtown London and on Tuesday Jean has invited the family over.  That will be lots of fun!  The big day is Thursday!   Jean arranged for a "car" to pick us up.  She was horrified I wanted to do the train!   I still wouldn't care but she said no one goes to a Buckingham Palace Garden party by public transport!   Too funny....wouldn't bother me at all although we would look out of place."

Today,  Elaine leaves from Rome for a four week cruise that takes her to Spain,  Gibraltar, France, Portugal,  Ireland, Saint-Pierre & Miquelon,  Newfoundland,  Quebec and ending in Montreal.

Dear Janice,
What a treat to arrive on the "Insignia" and hook up the IPAD and find a message waiting from you. We didn't bother with the internet while in Rome. It is such a long flight from Victoria to Vancouver to Frankfurt (that airport is still a nightmare and we were at the far end in international space and had to get to domestic to get the flight to Rome and were near the last to board) and finally to board. You know the drill and is why people are not so keen to travel any more. We had left Victoria at 2:30 pm on the Sat. and arrived at our Rome Hotel at 4:30 pm on Sunday! Our hotel was great and had an outside patio on the top floor with lots of tables and chairs and awnings for shade. We also had our breakfast up there as well as spent from 3:30 - 5:30 just getting out of the sun and heat (very hot). There was a little mini market across the street from our hotel so we enjoyed refrigerated cold Prosecco while on the patio!! You would have been proud of me - you trained me well. Our travel agent had organized a shuttle to pick us up and drive us to Rome's "port". We were expecting a shuttle bus of some size but were treated to a Jaguar - just us - very luxurious. The driver got us to the ship in 95 minutes so we boarded about noon to a wonderful lunch. I had a steak cooked fresh done perfectly rare! First time I've had a steak for lunch! There are only 680 passengers so a delightfully uncrowded ship. We are at sea today but arrive in Barcelona first thing tomorrow.
Much Love,  Elaine

Tuesday, May 23, 2017

Susan Point at the Vancouver Art Gallery...wow,wow, wow!

This exhibit ends May 28 and it is absolutely wonderful.  Take it in if you can.  My photos from a little iPhone don't do justice.  What an amazing artist she is!

I didn't realize this installation at the Vancouver Airport was Susan Point.

Absolutely wonderful...you have to see it!

Monday, May 22, 2017

All's well that ends well....

We were hoping for a quiet dinner at The Sylvia Sunday and have their  prime rib special last night.  There was a very noisy wedding party in the dining room so we went to the pub part and rethought the evening plans.   Before we got a chance to be served there we were told the wedding party had pretty much left so we went back to the dining room.

 Helmet and Maureen had come in for dinner in the meantime so we joined them and had a wonderful time.  We're all looking forward to the Stanley Park Lawn Bowling first Friday Bar-b-q.  Jim played very well in his game of bowls earlier in the day.  I think he is really going to enjoy this game.

Saturday, May 20, 2017

Lunch at the Red Lion in West Vancouver

This place is an old favourite of ours and we lucked into a parking space right on Marine Drive as someone pulled out just as we were passing and also lucked into a table in the sun on the patio.  It was probably available because it was too hot but we were prepared with sunglasses and hats and it was just perfect and lovely to sit out in the sun after a rather dreary month of rain and cloud since we returned from Palm Springs.

Draft Kilkenny....a perfect accompaniment.

I had the fish and chips...excellent example and very copious....Jim got some,  of course.

Jim had the burger with the Caesar.

 We wandered around a bit afterwards and went into Craig Yeats Gallery and even met the artist...seeing paint on his pants I figured he was the painter.  We quite liked his paintings.

The Red Lion from across the street.  It would be a cosy place inside on a cold winter night too but The Sylvia is closer.

We walked down to Dunderave Pier and reacquainted ourselves with The Beach House....also a good place to have a lunch.

 There were a few kids and even adults taking a bit of a dip....really too cold yet for enjoyable ocean swimming.   We also saw some people on the other side throwing out nets like we used to see around Spanish Banks.   Perhaps fishing for herring.  We don't see this much and wondering if it's a First Nations only fishery now.  The photo of that didn't turn out.

Thursday, May 18, 2017

Our 49th Anniversary

Well,  Jim has to teach tonight but that will give us reason to celebrate all the long weekend,  n'est-ce pas?  And it's going to be glorious weather as it was 49 years ago.

And of course,  Elaine sent us a wonderful package of goodies as usual!  Thank you so much,  dear friend.

A lovely card...

Good things to eat....this was breakfast this morning!

We've already had some laughs from these books!

Scented products...from Paris,  of course.

I thought these napkins were all the Eiffel Tower but each one has all my favourite architectural structures of Paris..wow!   And I'm so thrilled that there is Notre Dame de Paris....my favourite architectural structure in the world.