Sunday, January 07, 2018

Back to Real Life

During last week's trip to the mainland, Tim and I stopped at Brae Island for a walk. The island is in the Fraser River, alongside Fort Langley, built by the Hudson Bay Trading Company in 1827. The fort itself is a National Historic Site, and there is also a small town grown up beside it. It's a fun place to wander, with cute shops and interesting buildings. But this was New Year's Day and little was open. 

The Fraser River is navigable by fairly large ships for a long ways. These abandoned pilings bear mute witness to the industry that once bustled along the shores. 

In the Garibaldi Mountain Range across the river, these peaks played peek-a-boo with the clouds. The peaks were originally named the Golden Eyries, but the name became Golden Ears, and that's how these peaks are known today. The park encompassing the mountains is popular with hikers and campers, although I wouldn't have wanted to be camping up there in January. 

Once home again, I spent some time sewing. I wanted to make another project bag to hold my embroidery. As I began pinning the pieces together, I realized that the large floral print was directional, and going sideways instead of up and down. So I cut the bag dimensions in half, turned the flowers right way up, and ended up with two smaller bags. 

One of my New Year's intentions is to use up some of the many teas I have in my cupboard. There is a large box of various kinds, and they get ignored since I usually grab a bag from the canister on my countertop. So I sorted through the individual bags and put them into a small bowl in plain view where I'm more likely to use them. I like a little honey with my tea, as well. There's been a lot of tea made during these days at home. 

I'm beginning the new year with a new journal. Starting a blank book is full of possibility, and scope for imagination, don't you think? 

I have three of Laura Calder's cookbooks, and took this one from the library. I think it will go onto my wishlist, as well. I've never had a bad recipe from Calder - her books are full of inventive, but not labour-intensive ways to prepare vegetables, soups, and main courses, with a few desserts. You won't find muffins or very many cookies in her books. 

And one more photo from the mainland - of the birds at the Great Blue Heron Nature Reserve in Chilliwack. These were taken after the ice storm, and the birds were happy to crowd around the feeders. 

A squirrel was happy to clean up some of the mess made by falling birdseed. He looks quite fat and content.

School begins tomorrow, with a bang. A couple of hours ago another teacher contacted me - due to a family situation, I'm covering her morning classes. As well, a couple of visiting students from Brazil will be in my Spanish class in the afternoon. I find that I can understand Portuguese because of its similarity to Spanish, so we'll see if that works in reverse.

Linking with Mosaic Monday, hosted by Maggie of Normandy Life.  


  1. Happy New Year, Laurie, sending you and your family all the very best wishes for 2018.
    Lovely mountain and lake side scenes but it does look bitterly cold over there, cute photos of the birds and little chubby squirrel!
    Hope the first day back at school goes well, happy MM.

  2. Happy New Year! Such beautiful scenery on Brae Island. Lorrie you seem to find time in your day for so many different activities. It's amazing. I love the New year journal. My niece gave me a travel journal, which is somewhat like a scrapbook, and I'm really looking forward to using it.

  3. It is lovely to see the image of the squirrel and the birds happily eating together in the snow - something that would probably not be witnessed in warm weather conditions.
    Good luck with your new school term Lorrie.

  4. It looks like Laura Calder is holding a plate of muffins on the cover of her book that doesn't speak much about them! That's a good idea for using up the old tea, of which I have plenty. Hope your back to reality goes along pleasantly.

  5. Happy New Year And a lovely Monday Mosaic to you

    much love...

  6. Beautiful photos, the mountain are stunning.

  7. You will probably very much enjoy those morning classes despite their eating
    into what is normally home time. Hope it doesn’t last a day longer than necessary
    all the same.

    Such a nice long break...a week longer than schools here. I wish that we took the
    same amount of time. Everyone needs it. Maybe not all moms, but my daughter-in-law enjoys
    having her boys home. I always enjoyed vacations with my kiddos, too. I was not
    one whining for the children to be back to school.

    You capture so much beauty, Lorrie. Other than my daughter, I know of no one
    who takes regular walks all year long. It is certainly not common in my little sphere.
    Perhaps it is the one could get mowed over by a snowmobile on
    any given corner. Guess that’s why I prefer cemetery “trails” when the gates are open.

    Onward through another quarter! It will be winter vacation (do you have that in February?)
    before you know it! Then can Easter be far behind? (Not to wish time away or
    anything horrid like that.)

    P.S. Golden Eyries is so much nicer than Golden Ears. 😊

  8. Looks like you enjoyed your break, Lorrie, and got some great pictures. Now- back to the real world and hope the Spanish will see you through (as a translation tool)
    You got some GREAT pictures. xo Diana

  9. Happy New Year,Lorrie,
    What a lovely New Year's day you had spending time together on Brae island. The sky and sea blended into one in the first photo. Garibaldi Mountain is so beautiful.
    Such a lovely photo of the squirrel eating seeds and the birds together in the snow.I am smiling!Lovely day to you.

  10. Your mountain view is stunning. We have as little snow as you, just waiting when it starts to snow and the cold winter starts. Wishing you a lovely week.

  11. Hope you have a good week at school. The country around where you live is just so stunning. Thanks for sharing your outdoor pictures. Tea and a new journal are the best for the beginning of a new year. Teabag packages can tend to get lost, good idea to put a few out to grab.

  12. You took us on a beautiful tour, you certainly live in a beautiful part of the World. Hope all goes well with your students from Brazil, if all else fails hand gestures are useful. Take care.

  13. Happy 2018! Your snowy scenes are lovely. Have a great week ahead!

  14. Lorrie, Happy New Year! Love the blue and white teapot and I am joining you in clearing some of the tea I have collected. I want some of the excess gone and so I have room for the regulars. Love the watercolor of the journal. I need to start a book journal for 2018. Your nature photos are lovely. Sylvia D.

  15. Beautiful photos, Lorrie. Your sewing projects are so pretty. So, you got to experience the Frazier Valley freeze. I've been putting out my assortment of tea bags for our small group gathering each week and am happy to see them being used up. Amazing how they accumulate in the cupboard. Hope you have a good returning to work week!

  16. I think your photograph of the Garibaldi Mountain Range across the river is just lovely, a beautiful scene.
    Hope school starts and goes well for you, have a good week ahead.

    All the best Jan

  17. I hope your new semester got off to a great start today! Gosh you are ambitious -- I'm not sure I could even have thought of blogging while I was still working and you do such a fantastic job ... you amaze me. I'm glad the nasty weather didn't spoil your vacation -- you even got outside and got some wonderful pictures. Happy New Year to you and yours.

  18. This comment has been removed by the author.

  19. Sorry for deleting my comment, it posted oddly!

    I hope school goes well for you!

  20. Lorrie - I sighed when I saw your project bags - I REALLY need a better alternative than plastic shopping bags! I am adopting your tea bag approach - I need to drink more tea and just don't think of it enough - if it's in front of me, I will. I am fascinated by the bird feeders that appear to be made from small logs - I like the idea and the look better than a plastic feeder. I will have to do some investigation! Hope your day went well today.

  21. Lorrie, loved the photos. I love your new bags too. Blue and cream is favorite color combo of mine

  22. Hope your first day back to school went smoothly. It must have been lovely to have ha a break. I am a big tea drinker, especially when it is chilly. Enjoy!

  23. Your nature photos are beautiful as usual...and the snow capped mountains look unreal! That photo would make a good puzzle. The books you mentioned sound interesting. I can't eat any desserts so I've lost interest in most cookbooks. Hope your week is going well at school! Hugs! (I wonder if you could understand me...I have a serious Southern twang! heehee)

  24. Hope that the first day of classes went well. I'm also trying to use up my tea stash this year before I purchase any new teas. Today, I was happy that I finished a Teavana tea sampler from Dec 2014(!)

  25. Wonderful photos of the scenery and your pretty tea pot and teas. I like your idea for using up the tea stash. Your craft bags turned out pretty and I love the little pin cushion, too. I hope your first days back at school go smoothly! x K

  26. You've answered a question for me. I wondered why the bridge was called Golden Ears. Last time we were driving in the lower mainland we tried to avoid the toll bridges and drive around like we used to. What an adventure that turned out to be. A new journal is alway exciting ....and then I find at some point in hte year I forget all about it. You must be very organized to accomplish all you do Lorrie. Best wishes for the new year!

  27. Beautiful scenery and love those bags.

  28. Happy New Year, Lorrie! I join you in the plan to use up my supply of teas and other items in my pantry, before buying new ones. I enjoyed seeing your beautiful photos form the mainland and the different birds that live there.

    My husband can speak quite a bit of Spanish, as it is similar to Italian. Two of his cousins recently moved to Spain so we may make a trip to visit them one day and see some of that country.

  29. Hi Lorrie, I'm popping by a few blogs for a visit today. My eyes tire easily so I can't spend too much time reading. I enjoyed your photos of the valley and Golden Ears Peaks. They are beautiful! I have way too much tea....a whole drawer full in our pantry! And I got more for Christmas. I'm trying to make my way through them during this cold weather we've had although today it's 10C and raining. I hope you do fine with your extra teaching hours. Enjoy the weekend.

  30. Such lovely photos. I hope school went well. We are back at it too. Have a great weekend. :) Kit

  31. Loving catching up on your posts. The top photo here looks like a brilliant watercolor painting. I love your creativity with your bags you sewed. I have not previously heard of Laura Calder but see that I must check out her books now. Happy new year!


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