Category Archives: Photography

Road Trippin’ Colorado Style

So already on Day 1 there has been ballooning, hiking and a dinner on top of a mountain! Was pretty excited to see what Day 2 of my long weekend in Colorado would bring!

I got to sleep in a bit! (Which was so nice… I actually slept…AND I woke up feeling a lot better…looks like my body was adjusting to the altitude.) We did a bit of running around, dropped Ro off at doggie daycare…and then headed south to Colorado Springs!

Colorado Springs—were random deer run across the street to do their Sunday shopping at the grocery store?

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We had to stop in to pick up Keenan’s race bib for the marathon tomorrow. The pick up was this really cool brewery… it was an old school that had been converted!

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SO MUCH FUN…. we had already had lunch…or we would have stopped in the cafe for what looked like awesome food! colorado-springs_0020

Originally an elementary school built in 1916, Ivywild School was closed in 2009. It was shortly thereafter that the wheels started turning and the idea to move the 18-year old Bristol Brewery over to the space, along with a bakery, espresso/cocktail bar, delicatessen and office space, started to take shape. It was a unique and bold proposition that would take years of planning and a lot of great minds to achieve but it was just what the neighbourhood needed. {Source}

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Next up…. when in Colorado Springs you definitely need to go visit the Garden of the Gods! colorado-springs_0004

The Garden of the Gods has been designated as a National Natural Landmark. The Park is a unique biological melting pot where the grasslands of the Great Plains meet the pinon-juniper woodlands characteristic of the American Southwest, and merge with the mountain forest of the 14,115-foot Pikes Peak – America’s Mountain. The 300 million years of geological history of the Garden of the Gods in Colorado Springs reveal one of the most extensive pictures of earth history found anywhere in the United States. It is a true geological wonder. {Source}

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So why was it named the “Garden of the Gods”?

In August, 1859, two surveyors started out from Denver to begin a town site called Colorado City. While exploring locations, they came upon a beautiful area of sandstone formations. M.S. Beach suggested that it would be “a capital place for a beer garden,” when the country grew up. His companion, Rufus Cable, exclaimed, “Beer Garden! Why it is a fit place for the Gods to assemble. We will call it the Garden of the Gods.” The name stuck. {Source}

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It was so gorgeous…like breath taking awesome… we ended up here about mid-afternoon; with probably EVERYONE else that was in Colorado Springs! (Yahoo for long weekends… and people…but why not visit the most gorgeous spot on a long weekend?) colorado-springs_0005

We didn’t let the crowds stop us…but we decided to only stop at the ‘balanced rock’….
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Hence all the ‘from’ the car shots… with the car roof in the bottom. (I may or may not have been wearing my seatbelt…and may or may not have been stretching my hand out a window.. and randomly snapping photos… ) colorado-springs_0006

…and sometimes that drive-by shooting turns out pretty darn perfect! colorado-springs_0008 colorado-springs_0009

Just enjoying the ‘Balanced Rock’ with a few of our new friends…. colorado-springs_0010

In the 1890s, photographer Paul Goerke shrewdly purchased the land around Balanced Rock. Goerke and his son, Curt, snapped photos of tourists for .25 cents each. The Goerkes then developed the plates in their shop at Steamboat Rock.  They use to take photos of people in front of the balanced rock, he brought donkeys for them to sit on.
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Keenan managed to get the got-the-whole-holding-up-the-rock pose a lot better than I did!!!
colorado-springs_0011 What do do next? We decided to go check out the “Cliff Dwelling Museum”… about 5 miles west of Manitou Springs.
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After escaping the gift shop that was like a maze…many different levels, random rooms and never seemed to end! We went to walk through the cliff dwellings.
colorado-springs_0013 This site is a privately owned site.
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The history of the site was a wee bit lacking at the museum–or maybe we didn’t really take the time to read all of the history!
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RELOCATING THE CLIFF DWELLINGS

The 40 room site was originally located in McElmo Canyon, which is in the southwest corner of Colorado near Mesa Verde and Dolores. The process of relocating these cliff dwellings began in 1904 and was completed in 1907 when the preserve was opened to the public. Virginia McClurg, the original founder of the Colorado Cliff Dwellers Association, hired William Crosby and the Manitou Cliff Dwellings Ruins Company to begin this process. They wanted to preserve and protect these dwellings from looters and relic pot-hunters. (Source)

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Keenan did have so much fun randomly climbing and exploring all the nooks and rooms!
colorado-springs_0017 It was the perfect time of day to visit…the light was so pretty! Overall, it was kind of a bust…but way fun to walk around the site, maybe just not worth the cash to get in…
colorado-springs_0018 Thanks Keenan for snapping this photo… i think it is my new fav shot of myself!
colorado-springs_0019 Next we headed to check into our motel for the night… we had a room with a view! (Snapped just outside of our door… hello, Garden of the Gods!
colorado-springs_0023 We ditched our stuff and headed into Manitou Springs to walk around and find a spot for dinner.  colorado-springs_0027We ended up eating on a patio that was right beside this river! (seen in the photo…)
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Manitou Springs was an area that the Native Americans held sacred and would visit to drink and soak in water from the mineral springs to bring on healing. We stopped to look at the Shoshone Spring’s spring house…

Shoshone Spring’s spring house, built in the 1890s, is located on Manitou Avenue. It has the “greatest amount of deep-seated water from the karstaquifer system and the highest mineral content of the town’s springs, and particularly high content of chloride, calcium, alkalinity, lithium, manganese and zinc. Because of its high mineral content, it was considered the most “medicinal” of Manitou’s springs, partly because of its sulphur content. The spring house was constructed of red sandstone from the nearby Kenmuir Quarry, which is now the Red Rock Canyon Open Space (Source)

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While there…another group of 3 people came close to the springs…I really don’t know what happened, but and all of a sudden this Sugar Glider jumped onto Keenan… I might have screamed! Then got some photos…. of him hanging out, and climbing across his back onto his shoulder. Then the man claimed his pet…. it was a totally random, but pretty cool! (The funny thing was that the woman in the group had another sugar glider… but it was in her t-shirt pocket…not as social.) colorado-springs_0029 Another action-packed awesome fun day!!!! But have no fear–there’s still one more day of this holiday to get through… and that will be a story for another day!

Hiking in Colorado

Last post I told you all about my morning Ballooning.  After brunch we headed back to Keenan’s to pick up Rowan (Ro) his dog.  Then we packed our backpacks and headed up to the mountains to do some hiking.

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We started at Brainard Lake…found a parking spot (which we weren’t sure we’d get because it was so late in the day..and being a holiday weekend everyone was OUT and ENJOYING the weather!)…we put on sunscreen and started our walk.

As you can see in the photo it was at an elevation of 10,300 feet.  Our plan was to hike on the trail to Lake Isabelle walking past Long Lake on the way.
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“Keep close to nature’s heart…
and break clear away, once in awhile,
and climb a mountain
or spend a week in the woods.
wash your spirit clean. ” ~John Muir

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…it started off as a bright sunny day and there was a nice cool breeze, so it wasn’t too hot!

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The first sign that the seasons are changing… leaves that are starting to turn! (But Summer is not OFFICIALLY over until after September 21st—that’s my story and I’m sticking to it!) However, fall and the changing leaves is one of my most favourite times of the year.
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…there were lots of people on the path hiking! Seemed like all ages, everyone happy to be out and enjoying the day.  We were stopped by the park rangers (at the sign below) and asked if we had rain gear…the weather often turns fast in the mountains! The skies were starting to get darker.  We did and decided to keep on moving… hiking_0010

There’s always something magical about walking on a path in the woods. This hike it seemed more magical–as we could hear thunder bombing in the distance. I honestly think that is one of my fav memories of this hike…walking in the trees and just hearing the power of the rumbling thunder!  (But there was no lightening…and we were in the trees…so I was assured it was safe enough…and we’d be protected if lightening did strike.) And this info all came from a guy who did get struck by lightening on the top of a mountain…Keenan’s had some crazy adventures! But he knows his stuff… hiking_0011

I could have sat beside this river for hours…. it was so peaceful.  I need to do this more often go explore in nature–it feeds my soul! Don’t get me wrong–I do love living in a city, but I need to get some more regular visits back to nature to recharge my batteries. I think this is one of my favourite photos from my hike… hiking_0012

I’m a slow hiker…and I’m totally ok with that.  Luckily my hiking partner for the day was ok with that too.  I think part of the reason I was going even slower than normal…was the altitude. hiking_0013

I really didn’t even think about altitude and how it could affect me…but by this point in my hike I was feeling pretty awful.  My dull headache had reached the point of crazy-horrible…even though I was drinking lots of water… it didn’t help. I’m pretty sure it was a mild case of altitude sickness—and when I googles symptoms later that day.

(Yahoo for Doctor Google… 3 of the main symptoms were: headache, loss of appetite, and trouble sleeping. I had all 3…and realized that might explain my crappy sleep the night before!)

hiking_0014 …it was so beautiful, and I didn’t want to stop…but when I saw this HUGE log (in the photo below) beside the trail… I had to sit down, and I knew I was done…and I still had to hike back to the car! Somehow, Keenan seemed to know…that too so we decided to head back.
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So we didn’t end up at Lake Isabelle…but sometimes it’s not about the final destination but the journey to get there. It was still pretty awesome to be hiking in the mountains in Colorado.

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I’m not really a dog person–I mean I love other people’s dogs…but I can never really see myself getting one of my own. (Which is ok…I do enjoy walking my brother’s dog Gus….he’s the best!) But over this hike this little guy earned a special spot in my heart… Ro was such an awesome hiking buddy!  He LOVED to be out there on the trail…but didn’t really love the huskies we saw on the trail….even though they were way bigger than him! It was fun watching him always on the move…hunting and looking for things to chase! (even though he was on a leash the whole time!)
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…My photos really don’t do it justice! Every moment of the walk I was in awe….it’s so beautiful, and I was so glad to experience it. hiking_0018

…with the thunder there was a bit of rain, but it mainly was a light drizzle and then the sun came back out.  I joked it’s because I was there, and the sun was mandatory for my visit. hiking_0019

On our way back to the car…we passed some hikers that told us just down the way there was a moose in the field.  I was pretty excited, but didn’t want to get TOO excited, because you never know with wildlife…whats’ there one minute has sometimes moved on by the time you get there 5-10 mins later! hiking_0020

However, I wasn’t disappointed!!! We got to see a momma moose and her calf.  Keenan stayed with Ro on the path so I could get a wee bit closer for photos.  Once I was done that, I unclipped Ro’s lead and kept him at the road so Keenan could go closer to take some video clips! hiking_0021

Hiking magic…wildlife? WOW… you can never expect to see things like this…but when it happens you feel so blessed to have been there to see that moment. hiking_0022

We hiked down to Brainard Lake a different way than we came…and ended up on the other side of it.  At this point, I was so dead…even with a smiling selfie…I was feeling done in.  So I chilled by the lake…watched a dad with some kids rearrange everyone so that they were in the spots they wanted so they could go back out to fish.  Keenan and Ro headed back to the car and came back to pick me up.  Thanks again for doing that Keenan! hiking_0024

Then we were on our way back to Louisville.  Down the crazy winding road…we past through Ward, Colorado.  It’s a crazy little town… with heaps of random things around old houses….Keenan told me that their post office was just removed—so they have to go somewhere else to get their mail now. hiking_0025

Of course after we are finished our hike and heading down the mountain the sun comes out…and nice gorgeous blue skies! But it was time to head home… have a shower and a bit of down time.  Before we headed back up into the mountains for dinner! hiking_0027

As we were driving up to Gold Hill… it was getting dark, and starting to rain…and we weren’t 100% sure of the road, we had a map and rough idea where we were going but no cell signal.  But we continued on this dirt road up the mountain.  We went around this HUGE curve…and I was like WOW, look at that… the lights of Boulder on the horizon.  (side note: I was pretty impressed with my new iPhone 6S’s camera!) gold-hill-inn_0026We had a reservation at 8pm for dinner at the Gold Hill Inn. “The Gold Hill Inn is remote from the city lights and city noise of the Twenty-first Century. Things haven’t changed much since Frank and Barbara Finn opened the Gold Hill Inn in 1962. Sons Chris and Brian Finn are now managing operations by continuing to serve their six course meals, with the menu reflecting the seasonal offerings of the local markets.” (Source)

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…the history of places is always an interest to me.  So it was pretty awesome to have dinner in a place…where if the walls could talk, I’m sure there’d be heaps of stories to tell!

 In January 1859 a group of prospectors panned & dug their way up Four Mile Creek looking for traces of gold.  As they approached what is now the town site of Gold Hill, they discovered the first real proof that their search was profitable. The town site began to grow, upon the formation of Mountain District #1 Nebraska Territory. First, the miners built a settlement of log houses and shacks, followed by the service buildings, school, stores, and boarding houses.

In 1872 the Wentworth Hotel, a three-story luxury log building, was constructed with the idea of attracting tourists to the town. The Wentworth Hotel hosted many early personalities such as Clarence Darrow and Eugene Field who wrote several poems about Gold Hill including, ” Casey’s Table D’ Hote “.
In 1920, the hotel became the Bluebird Lodge, and was run as a private vacation spot for women from the Chicago area who were teachers, nurses etc…. Mrs. Sherwood was the original creator and was a protégé of Jane Addams of Hull House and also a humanitarian. The vacation spot became so popular, that in 1924 a dining hall, also log, was needed, and built next to the Bluebird Lodge. By the late fifties the “single” vacation was no longer desirable or necessary since the “rights” of women had improved. Many of the women had acquired their own cabins in Gold Hill.
In 1962 the hotel and dining hall were bought by Barbara and Frank Finn from the Holiday House Association. The dining hall became the Gold Hill Inn and the adventure began. (Source)

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The other pretty awesome thing about this place…I had joked to Keenan before coming that I wasn’t climbing up any mountains, unless there was a tea house at the top! So what does he do? Finds a restaurant at the top of a mountain to take me too for a fabulous 6 course meal!!!
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There was a salmon appetizer, then a extremely yummy lentil soup, then salad (didn’t remember to take a photo of that!)… for my entree I had the smoked stuffed trout—OMG so yummy!

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Then I had this frozen chocolate mint cup for dessert…and it was so darn good….and tea then cheese and fruit to share.  The food was amazing, company even better and the conversation the best part of the night! gold-hill-inn_0005

…we made it down the mountain winding down the dark, gravel road…which seemed way faster than the way up!

Believe it or not…this was just Day 1 of my 3 day weekend adventure!  There’s way more stories to tell… but that will have to be in another post.

Balloon Magic in Colorado

For Labour Day weekend (last weekend) I went to visit my friend Keenan in Colorado. For years I’ve read his blog and loved watching all his posts of him exploring and enjoying the mountains in Colorado.  It’s a place I’ve always wanted to visit…so decided that Labour Day weekend was the perfect time to go and explore Colorado for myself. (Fair warning: this post is going to have a PILE of PHOTOS!)
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My flights were uneventful… I actually lucked out with a really awesome seat, I could stick my feet into business class but the real perk of this was I had extra leg room! It was one of those flights that I fell asleep before we took off, and woke up about 45mins before we landed! (Nice to get a cat nap in… travelling always makes me feel so tired, especially jumping back in time 2 hours with the time zone difference!)  balloon-magic_0001

Keenan picked me up…and after heading back to his place and a quick walk for Ro…we headed out for dinner and ice cream! Ended up having the most fantastic burrito…and even had left overs for the next day.
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So Friday night I was told, “So we are going to have to wake up at 5:30am tomorrow…BUT it’s because we are going HOT AIR BALLOONING!!!” Huge-amazing-awesome-surprise…

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Anyone who know me knows I don’t like early mornings… but hello!? Maybe I should reassess that stance…and be getting up earlier to catch the sunrise…because there is some magic light and so gorgeous and worth getting up way early in the morning.

balloon-magic_0005No words of complaint about the hour…when you get to see the sun rise on the horizon!
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“Nobody can be uncheered with a balloon.”
A.A. Milne, Winnie the Pooh

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There was huge excitement as everyone was put into their groups… there were like 4-5 Balloons that took up between 6-8 people  (plus driver) in the basket. We went with Fair Winds– Hot Air Balloon Flights.  They launch them about a 30min drive from Keenan’s house…often he has seen them taking off during his early morning runs!
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But first thing first… huge fans were used cool air to inflate the balloons (that had been laid out on huge tarps)…the baskets were all on their sides.
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After they were filled with cool air, then it is switched the ‘hot’ air…and slowly the balloons came up off of the ground! (The two people below joined our balloon ride… they were enjoying some early morning fresh air…)
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All the balloons were so colourful and gorgeous.  We ended up going on the more green one.
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I did find out some information I didn’t know about…”Most hot air balloon launches are made during the cooler hours of the day, at dawn or two to three hours before sunset. At these times of day, the winds are typically light making for easier launch and landing of the balloon. Flying at these times also avoids thermals, which are vertical air currents caused by ground heating that make it more difficult to control the balloon. In the extreme, the downdrafts associated with strong thermals can exceed the ability of a balloon to climb and can thus force a balloon into the ground.” Source

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This wasn’t my first balloon ride… when I was younger I won a hot-air balloon trip for two through a grocery store competition.  So I took my gramma… (She was the one that always told me to sign up for the in-store competitions.) We went at sunset…so the sunrise was a bit different! balloon-magic_0012

Our balloon is getting filled with hot air…balloon-magic_0026

As the balloons inflate, there is someone holding onto the top with a long rope… (not sure why… and I didn’t ask…) But it was cool to flip around to the other side to quickly get this photo before we had to jump in our basket. balloon-magic_0013

So exciting…as we started to take off.  Now in our basket…we had 6 other people.  A couple that was celebrating their 44th Wedding Anniversary; a lady who didn’t like heights (but was going to have the experience with her husband)…and another couple that had perfectly timed iPod play list… that they shared earphones to listen to the whole trip!
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The other balloon waiting to take off… until we got into the air! (Every balloon had a walkie talkie so the balloons can communicate with each other.)balloon-magic_0015

WOW!!! the mountains + balloons… honestly, there are no words… I couldn’t stop smiling, staring and taking photos! balloon-magic_0016

…such amazing gorgeous views.  balloon-magic_0017

…I loved flying over the neighbourhoods, everything looked so tiny—and almost like a model village! I remember thinking this as a child on my first trip too! (sometimes things don’t change). balloon-magic_0018

…those smiles didn’t stop the WHOLE time!
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…even our balloon pilot was all smiles as he talked and told us random things about what we were seeing! He also would turn the balloon so we could get a view over our side of the basket! balloon-magic_0020

We ended up going in a pretty straight line… and went up to 7500 feet! balloon-magic_0021

As all good things, come to an end… soon our trip ended!… I was expecting a bumpy landing (my first trip we bumped and were dragged sideways in a farmer’s field)….but that was so not what happened this time.  We had one BUMP and then hovered over to a better grassy area to put out the balloon.  balloon-magic_0022

…We stayed in the basket until the balloon was unflattened and laid out onto the grass.  (they opened up the top…. (which was closed before we took off!) balloon-magic_0023

After we got back to were we took off from we were surprised with ‘goodie’ bags! A t-shirt, framed photo of the two of us in the basket taken before we took off, a pin, and a mini-bottle of champagne.  (This is a tradition in ballooning…rumours had it the first French balloonists would take champagne to give to spectators to ease their nerves when they landed!)
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…then we got to wait around while all the balloons and baskets were packed up! Keenan and I took the time with a few selfies! (some on our iPhones and others on my SLR…)
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…after we headed into Louisville for brunch, at this really neat family run 50s style diner.  balloon-magic_0030

So that was the start of my action-packed-weekend-of-fun in Colorado…Keenan you sure know how to start a weekend off with a BANG and surprise a person…Thank you so much for this amazing surprise!

But don’t worry dear readers, there’s more adventures and stories from Colorado to be told…but they are going to have to wait until the next post!

EDITED:  to add Keenan’s AWESOME video from the adventure! Thanks for putting this together Keenan… 🙂

Heading West…

This past weekend my mum and I travelled out to Canmore, Alberta for my cousin’s wedding. It has been a few years since our last mother-daughter trip...it was time to hit the road…and see what trouble  fun we could get into!

(I must admit—this is a PHOTO heavy post, but I’m totally not apologizing for that…it felt good to be out there shooting again!) Alberta_0001

It was an early morning flight–tea was necessary once we got all checked in.  I settled in for our flight to Calgary…I marked a few papers on my way! (Life a prof…sometimes the marking doesn’t end, however…a long flight is a great time to get through some papers!) Alberta_0003

After we picked up the rental we took the road…I just used Google and I ended up not on the the Trans Canada Highway 1 to Lake Louise—but ended up on the 1A…it was a really fun route!
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Stopping to smell the wild roses along the way…and excited to see fresh lakes and mountains!! Alberta_0004

This was the first time I’ve been on a plane in 11 months…which is a long time especially after my life and amount of flights I did in the 12 months prior! It was fun to be on an adventure again…travelling, taking photos and laughing with my mum.
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…I’m glad I argued with the rental car place and didn’t accept the ‘mini-van’ they wanted to give me…but ended up with a Jeep Patriot.  I felt a wee bit guilty like I was having a secret affair on Milo…but OH did I LOVE driving that JEEP! (It was loaded…leather seats, sun roof (which we never used bc it was soooo chilly!) and satellite radio! Alberta_0006

Lake Louise is beautiful…and I got to see SNOW in June again! (Yes, it snowed briefly the first night we were there…) The last time I was here I was 12…on a road trip across Canada with my Gramma and Grandpa & two brothers! It was nice to return with my mum…Alberta_0007

The food during our trip was amazing…I decided to randomly put together a collage of some of our awesome meals! Alberta_0008

The first night it was pretty cloudy and overcast at the lake…and it was WINDY!
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We had dinner at the Chateau Lake Louise. A brief history of the Chateau… The hotel was first conceived by the railway at the end of the 19th century, as a vacation destination to lure moneyed travellers into taking trains and heading West. It has burned down not once but 2 times in it’s history… it is now part of the Fairmont Hotel Family.  Alberta_0011

The grounds outside of the hotel are so amazing! Mum was very patient with me…letting me run around and take random photos while she sat and enjoyed the scenery and people watching of other tourists! Alberta_0012

We stayed overnight at Deer Lodge…just a 5 minute walk from the lake.  It was such a cool older resort…had so much character! I LOVED it… think squeeky floors, high ceilings, comfortable beds…and old school lodge! Alberta_0014 Alberta_0013 Alberta_0019 Alberta_0015

The next morning before we left we went back to the Lake to see what we could see…but the clouds were pretty low on the mountains, but the lake was oh so amazing in colour! Alberta_0020 Alberta_0016

Our next stop was Moraine Lake…it was SO cold!! I snapped a few photos of the lake–but honestly, it was crawling with people…and hard to get the shots I wanted to get! Alberta_0017

Mum and I stopped in the gift shop to look around…and to warm up! (I didn’t really realize how cold it would be this time of year–I had checked the weather before going, but honestly you’d think a girl that had lived in the Arctic for 5 years would have been better prepared…but I wasn’t…thankfully I did bring a jean jacket!) Alberta_0021 Alberta_0018

The views along the road to Moraine Lake were so amazing! Alberta_0022

The German tourists…saw me taking the selfie on the right.. and offered to take my photo on the left. (mum was safe in the car—she wasn’t a fan of the cliff on the side of the road…) Alberta_0023

We had lunch at the historic railway station in Lake Louise—such great food… mum had the ‘dirty mac and cheese’ (with pulled pork in it)….I must admit I was a wee bit jealous!
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Stops along the road between Lake Louise and Banff… Mountains take my breath away! There’s always time for a mountain selfie!!!
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Once we got to Canmore…mum and I decided to try to figure out were the wedding and the reception were going to be held.  The Reception was easy… Got that one down.  However, the wedding address when put into google maps—was a bit more interesting.  I told mum this looks wrong… it’s a 45min drive from Canmore…but she said, “Let’s just try it…” I tried to caution her again…but said, “ok…” Alberta_0032

Our little ‘road trip’ took us high above the town of Canmore…on a twisty road up behind town…then into the wild! Mum and I were surprised to see 3 Elk…a Bear and a small furry animal (which I didn’t get a photo of)…and oh did we laugh… Alberta_0029

The laughter started when google lady said “you have arrived!” we looked at each other…and we were like… it’s a dirt road with TREES on either side… probably not the best place to have a wedding. Alberta_0031

But honestly… that 2 hour return trek (in search of the wedding)…was one of the highlights of my long weekend away! So much laughter.. and fun and the trees, mountains and wildlife = perfect end to a crazy day!
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The weekend was just beginning…with a whole lot of surprises and more fun in store! I suppose I’m going to have to blog about that soon!

Exploring Prince Edward County

This past May 2-4 weekend I went to visit my friend Johanna in Trenton, Ontario.  I had visited her last in February when I finished up my quilt and also have experiments with crazy cold weather and boiling hot water!  

The weekend was jam-packed and we had a blast visiting, going to yard sales and exploring Prince Edward County! (We even had time for me to start my next quilting project…but more about that later!)

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The Crab-Apple trees in front of Johanna’s house were in full bloom… so gorgeous!!! It was the perfect time to have a little photo shoot.
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The next day a lot of these blooms were covering the sidewalks and ground….seems like our photo shoot was perfectly timed! May 2-4 Weekend_0002

On Sunday we got up and decided to check out some yard sales…we decided to go on a bit of a road trip to Prince Edward County.

Prince Edward County is located in Southern Ontario at the eastern end of Lake Ontario. It is an island community encompassing less than 700 square kilometers (270 sq mi), with over 800 kilometers (500 mi) of shoreline.The permanent population is approximately 25,000. We share our spectacular natural beauty with over 100,000 visitors each year. A popular attraction is Sandbanks Provincial Park, attracting thousands of visitors on hot summer days.

The island community has retained a unique character that evokes fond recollections of days long past.  Idyllic country roads wind through historic towns and villages, countryside dotted with farms and vineyards, past artists studios and antiques shops,  and along shorelines that border Lake Ontario and the Bay of Quinte.

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We took some back roads and enjoyed the views… (stopped to talk to people along the way…) and took heaps of photos! We stopped for a picnic lunch overlooking the water (view on the photo below on the left) in Picton… May 2-4 Weekend_0005

We continued on to Bloomington.

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One of the things that Prince Edward County has started is a Barn Quilt Trail…it was so cool to see so many colourful blocks up in front of homes, businesses and barns as we drove by!

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We wanted to stop in the antique store called “Dead People’s Stuff” .  The name of the store is perfect…and the store did not disappoint! May 2-4 Weekend_0008

So many fun displays and signs… I love visiting antique stores and finding one thing that is the treasure I didn’t even know that I needed to have! May 2-4 Weekend_0011

…this shopping experience started off as a window shopping only trip.  However, Johanna found a fabulous basket…and I found an adorable kids table with two chairs.  (It reminded me of one that I saw as a kid….right now it’s in my apartment and the perfect table to hold my printer!) May 2-4 Weekend_0009

…so many treasures!May 2-4 Weekend_0010

…If I ever have a fence… I think I’ll be doing this to it!! May 2-4 Weekend_0012

At the beginning of the day I told Johanna at some point I needed to shoot a new header for my blog.  So that became one of the projects of the day…I always like to have some sort of header with Me on a Road.  So we decided to keep our eyes open to see if we can find something “spring-like” for a little photo shoot.  Johanna is an incredible photographer so I was excited that she was game to help me out.  Near the end of the day we drove past this LONG driveway with this random YELLOW bike on the side…. it just was perfection! I said–STOP the CAR!!! and we backed up and then walked down the road… Thanks so much Johanna for being my photographer! I LOVE these photos…

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Road Tripping with another photographer is always fun…because they get when you see a cool barn or some run down buildings.. and say STOP let’s get some photos!
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I can’t wait to come back and explore this area of Ontario…so many awesome Bed and Breakfasts and places to explore… May 2-4 Weekend_0016

We had to stop at theMurray Canal/Brighton Swing Bridge so that a boat could pass… it was pretty cool to see the swing bridge in action…and of course Johanna and I had time to steer our boat along the side of the water! May 2-4 Weekend_0018

Even with all that fun outside exploring in the evenings we did some planning.  I did some cutting, sewing and piecing…starting my next quilted project! I will return in the summer to finish up this project. May 2-4 Weekend_0019

It was a perfect long weekend…the first in awhile I haven’t had to deal with snow!  Thanks so much for your awesome company this weekend… I can’t wait until we see each other next!

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