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Saturday, April 30, 2011

larger pictures

Spring evening sky


My blogger friend, Cindy at Oakview Cottage, suggested that I try to make my pictures larger so you could see them better so I reset my page and am trying this.  What do you think?  I am posting  X-Large size now.

I'll try this and I'd sure appreciate your opinion, Cindy and anyone else who see this.

We had a work afternoon at our son's house.  Hubby was helping him with his new deck.  It is huge!  And I was raking tree debris for over 2 hours.  There are a lot of trees on the property and a lot of branches down as the trees are old and break easily.  I'm exhausted so I'm off to bed as we have church in the morning.

Please let me know what you think about the picture size.



Friday, April 29, 2011

a royal wedding and water through the dam

Did you watch the royal wedding this morning?  I did.  I got up at 5:00 and watched the whole thing right down to the kisses on the balcony of Buckingham Palace.  Wasn't it a beautiful wedding?  Prince William and Catherine are a beautiful couple aren't they?  I wish them every happiness!

Mactaquac Dam

After I watched the wedding I got ready to go to the city for errands. 
I decided to go over the dam
to see the spring runoff pouring through the gates.

This dam was built in the 1960's across the St. John River between Kingsclear
and Keswick Ridge and near Mactaquac.  The water behind this dam is called
the Mactaquac Headpond and it goes for miles upriver like a wide lake then
it narrows back to a river as it goes all the way into northern Maine.

The gates are opened to allow water to flow through and on down the river
all the way to Saint John on the Bay of Fundy.  However, there is often flooding
below the dam especially in the Fredericton area, due to the heavy spring run off.
We have no snow in the southern half of the province but in the northern reaches
of the river, into Maine and Quebec there is a lot of snow yet to melt and it
all flows into this river basin and down through the dam.

The roiling water at the base of the open gates.

To gain perspective of the size of this dam note the 18 wheeler transport
crossing it.

This is a view of the Mactaquac Headpond taken from the other side of
the dam and looking up river.  Isn't it beautiful? 

These are some of the towers that carry the power lines across the province.

This is the Keswick flats or interval just a couple of miles below the dam.
These are fields that flood every spring and the water often covers the road
that I am driving on.  It's a weird feeling to drive that road with the water
lapping at the edge of both sides!!

My friend, Lois, invited me to lunch today before we went to town.  She had 5
of her friends over at 6:00 this morning to watch the royal wedding.  And,
they each made a 'Facinator' hat to wear!  This is her hat.
Isn't it gorgeous?  I think she did a fabulous job.  She got her flowers
at Dollarama.  I'd hate to think what some of those at the wedding would have cost.
Another of her friends made them each replicas of the royal engagement ring
that you see on her hand!   Isn't that fun?

Of course, I had to try on her hat too.

It was a beautiful day from start to finish.  I witnessed history in the making with the Royal wedding.
 The sun was shining and it was 20 degrees celsius, the first really warm day this season. 
I saw the power of water going through the dam.
And, I had a lovely lunch and afternoon with my friend.

I hope you had a lovely day too!



Thursday, April 28, 2011

vintage aprons and thrifting finds

I went to Value Village last week to see what they had as I'm still looking for white dishes and they did have a set for 4 with a raised fruit motif around the edge, but I'd like at least 8 place settings and something plain so I'm going to keep looking.  I did find a few treasures at VV though.

I'll start with this plate.  I couldn't believe it when I saw it as my mother had the
exact same plate and we gave hers away or sold it at some point.
The artist is Molly Lamb.  She is from Fredericton, N.B. and is married to
Bruno Bobak.  They are both quite famous artists and Bruno is very well
known for his artwork from World War II.

The back of the plate says it all.  My mother bought the first 2 in this series.
So there are 1500 of them out there somewhere, if they were all sold.
Not rare but kind of interesting that my mother did have that same plate.

I found 2 vintage aprons and a pretty square table cloth as well.

One apron is a pretty lilac print and the other yellow and orange.  They are a bit
worn with small tears and a couple of small stains but I love the pretty colours.

Look at the sweet gingham trim.

I hung these vintage aprons on my window curtain rod.  The 2 on the right
were my mothers and are made of organza. The small one on the left was
mine when I was a little girl. It has sewn up sections at the bottom for crayons. 
The other 2 are the newer ones.  Don't they look pretty in the sunlight?

Here is a close up of the pale yellow organza one.  It has a piece of black
fabric on the back to form the lady and she is stitched all around with varigated

The pretty edge of the white and red organza apron.

This is a close up of the table square.  It has orange and yellow sunflowers,
tiny bumble bees and butterflies on it. 


Thanks for stopping by today. 
I am joining Cindy for Show and Tell Friday

I hope you will stop over there too and join in on the fun.

Have a wonderful day!



a moose and a horse

On last Thursday morning around 7:30, I glanced out the kitchen window and saw a large black animal on my neighbours driveway.  I thought it was a horse that had gotten away from someone's farm.  That happens sometimes.  We've had horses and cows in our own yard over the years - escapees from nearby farms. 

One time about 30 years ago there were 3 white cows in the corner where there used to be a fence.  I had never seen white cows around our area before so I started calling farmers up the road and found out these belonged to a farmer over the hill and across the water - about 1 mile or so away as the crow flies.  Come to find, out these cows somehow crossed the headpond either by swimming ??? or walking across the causeway.  Someone said they saw them in the water the evening before.  So after their swim/walk across the headpond they walked up the steep hill through woods and fields to our backyard!  The farmer came with a truck and colleted his cows.  I think I have a photo of them somewhere.  But, it's a true story!

But, I digress.  The huge black animal in the driveway, which I thought was a horse, was not a horse, but a moose!  It started walking toward the road so I ran to the front window then ran and got my camera and ran back quickly just in time to get a couple photos of it.

This is a young male (I think) but he doesn't have antlers yet and his 'bell'
is just starting to grow under his neck.  My friend who lives about 7 km.
from here thinks it's the one she almost ran into last fall.  She named him Jean Guy.
Thankfully he crossed the road without running into anyone.  This guy is about the size
of a large horse.  When a moose hits a car with those long skinny legs, they fly up and land
on the car, usually through the windshield.  That's why some many people are killed or
injured by these huge animals every year.  In New Brunswick, the government has installed
'moose fencing' along some the major highways where moose are known to be plentiful.
It helps but sometimes the moose find there way around the fencing and onto the road.

Here it is running toward the road.  A car came along and startled it so it ran
back up a few feet then turned and kept going across the road and down through
the field.  We had a bit of snow and freezing rain the night before and it was foggy.
The tree on the right foreground is right by our front door and the driveway is
about 50 feet away, just to give you an idea of his size.

So, that was an exciting morning.

This next photo is rare for sure.  It was taken by my father in Richibucto, NB in the 1940's
maybe.  Not sure of the date.

This is a picture of a picture.  Sorry about the quality. 
I think it's so funny.  This man is actually being pulled on his bicycle by a horse!
I always have this photo stuck somewhere so people can see it and have a good laugh.

I think that church burned down a year or two ago.  It was a very old Catholic church
in Richibucto.

So, that's my moose and horse story today.  You can see why I first thought there was
an escaped horse in the driveway last week.  These two large animals kind of resemble
one another in size and shape but a moose's head is very large when they are grown
plus they have huge bodies on long, spindly legs and the males have huge antlers.
(and they're ugly looking too).

Have you ever seen a moose?  I'd like to hear your story.

Tomorrow I'll be back with some pretties that I found at Value Village.



Wednesday, April 27, 2011

an explanation of 'grass widow'

Well, I opened up a can of worms, so to speak, when I was asked what the term 'grass widow' meant.  In my post yesterday the teacup I showed was called "Grass Widow" by Royal Albert.

I have heard the term used before and it usually is used to refer to a woman whose husband was always fishing, hunting or golfing. 

I decided to Google the term and this is what I found.  And it may shock you as it did me.

Grass Widow:  noun   A woman whose husband is away often or for a prolonged period.
A woman who is divorced or separated from her husband.
An abandoned mistress.
The mother of a child born out of wedlock.
The earliest recorded sense of the word (1528) was "an unmarried woman who has lived with one or more men".

WOW!  I had no idea that it had other meanings like this and I hope I didn't offend anyone.

I guess if Royal Albert China can use the term that it must be in the nicest sense of the definition.  Right?

So, there you go.  A little history on the term 'grass widow'.

Canada geese and ducks on the flooded intervale.

On another note, the spring peepers (baby frogs) are singing every night
in the unfrozen ponds.  I love the sound and can't wait until it's warm enough
to leave the bedroom window open at night and listen to them as I go to sleep.

We are in day 2 of a four day stretch of rainy weather.  The old saying "April showers bring May flowers" will definitely be true and I really hope May's weather is better than April's!

I'll be back tomorrow with a post about a very large animal.  Have I got you wondering?  Please come back and see.




Tuesday, April 26, 2011

grass widow?

It's fishing season.  Somewhere.  I don't know if it's official here in New Brunswick as the ponds are just thawing out and the rivers are running high with the snow melt.  But, somewhere it is fishing season and someone  may be a 'grass widow'.

So, while the Mr. is out fishing why don't you have
 a cup of tea and
a big soft molasses cookie.

Let's have a look at those cookies.

Don't they look yummy?  I will be honest and tell you I didn't make them.
I stopped into the local bakery to buy these.  They are huge so one is plenty.

There is something special about this tea time though.   

Can you see it?  There is a fisherman on this cup and saucer.
I believe fishermen are now called 'fishers' as there are also a lot
of fisherwomen out there too. ( Not to be confused with the little animal
called a 'fisher' which we have here in New Brunswick.)

Here is a better look.

This is the bottom of the cup.  Did you ever see such a teacup?
I tried to find something on the internet about it and the rest of them in the series.
 I haven't found anything but if any of my readers have seen them
 I'd appreciate more information on the set.

I found this cup and saucer at my mother-in-law's.

The green depression glass plate came from my mother-in-law's too.
Ooops!  You've caught me nibbling.  Good cookies, I must say.

This is my father-in-law's old fishing rod and creel.  I dug
them out of the basement where they've been for over 30 years.
I love the basket and have wondered what to do with it - decorwise.
Any suggestions?

I hope you have enjoyed my unique teacup tea time today and hope you will
join Sandi at Rose Chintz Cottage for Teatime Tuesday.
unique teacups today.

Thanks for stopping by.



Monday, April 25, 2011

Laura Secord Easter egg and a heroine

One of my favorite Easter treats is a Laura Secord Easter egg.  I went out and bought one so I could show you what I was referring to in my post about Childhood Easter Memories that I wrote on Wednesday, April 20. 

Here is the box which hasn't changed much over the years.
Do you see that tablecloth?  I'll tell you all about it later in the week.

Looking at the wrapped egg laying in excelsior in the box.

Dark chocolate covered goodness.

Doesn't that look yummy??  All that creamy yolk....oh my!

See the piece on the right?  I ate it after I took the pictures. :-)

And, it tasted very good. 

Who was Laura Secord and why are there chocolates by this name?
I decided to Google the name and this is some of what I learned.

Laura Secord is respected as a true hero in that, but for her, Canada might
have been another part of the United States.  (no offence to my American friends!)
She was born in the United States but her widowed
father moved them to Queenston on the Kingston Peninsula (Niagara area)
 of Canada in 1795.  In 1777 she married James Secord.
The War of 1812 was going on and being that Queenston was near the
American border the people were vary aware of the battles nearby.
James went to war and was wounded.  Laura went looking for him when
he didn't return home, found him and nursed him in their home.
American officers seized their home and she had to serve them meals.
She overheard some officers discussing plans to surpirsingly crush their
British opponents led by Lieutenant FitzGibbon.
Laura made the 19 mile journey on foot through woods and swamps to warn
the British.  She was aided by Iroquois indians and reached FitzGibbon safely.
The expected surprise attack fizzled out and the Americans again were
driven back.
FitzGibbon's writings confirmed Laura Secord's story and she was honoured
by the Prince of Wales with a gift of 100 pounds.

In 1913 Frank P. O'Conner started a Toronto business of hand-made chocolates.
Because Laura Secord was an icon of courage, devotion and loyalty he
named the business for her.
There are 130 stores across Canada and Laura Secord is the largest and
best known chocolatier in Canada.

Now you know the story behind Laura Secord Chocolates.

Our Easter musical drama was a great success with dozens of very gifted
and talented people taking part.  We had over 800 at both evening programs.
Part of the story line takes place in a hospital emergency room (hence the props)
and also follows the life of Jesus with many powerful biblical scenes.

Here is a picture of our church band.

My hubby, the keyboard player, is the third from the left.

I hope you had a wonderfully blessed Easter weekend.

I'll be back tomorrow for Tea Time Tuesday.  I hope you will
come back and see my unique teacup.



The egg is almost gone.
I should have bought more.

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Good Friday and Easter thoughts

My mother-in-law's well worn Bible.

"Two other men, both criminals, were also led out with him to be executed.
When they came to the place called the Skull, there they crucified him, along
with the criminals - one on his right, the other on his left.
Jesus said,
'Father, forgive them, for they do not know what they are doing.'" 
Luke 23:32-34  NIV

"When he (Jesus) had led them (the disciples) out to the vicinity of Bethany, he lifted up
his hands and blessed them.  While he was blessing them, he left them and was
taken up into heaven."  Luke 24:50-51  NIV

I wish each of you a blessed Easter and pray you will take time to
think about the true events of that first Good Friday and Easter when Jesus
was crucified for our sins, he was buried, and on the third day he rose
again from the grave of death to give us victory.  He appeared to the dsiciples
several times before he ascended into heaven to sit at the right hand of God.

"For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only son, that whoever
believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life."  John 3:16 NIV

May God richly bless you and yours,


The biblical drawings are from an old family Bible dated 1879.

I'll be back next week after our busy weekend with our Easter drama.

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

childhood Easter memories

I've been thinking about Easter when I was a child.  There were 4 children in my family and we always looked forward excitedly to Easter morning for what the Easter bunny brought. 

We didn't get a lot.  We had those pretty woven coloured baskets with green 'grass' in them and a few of those colored candy eggs, maybe an Oh Henry egg or a chocolate marshmallow egg, or a chocolate bunny in a pretty foil bunny wrapper.

Yes, I saved my own kids Easter baskets!  I guess that makes them vintage
as they are at least 30 years old!

I remember we'd sometimes get a new skipping rope, soap bubbles, a rubber ball, a paddle ball, or some other spring toy.  I guess we could count on the Easter bunny to replace our worn out toys each year.

My Grammie sometimes gave us a Laura Secord egg in the yellow box with the excelsior inside. The egg would be chocolate covered with white cream and a yellow 'yolk' center and it would be wrapped in a thin white paper and laid in the excelsior.  They were the best eggs!  I have bought them in recent years but they don't have the same taste.  I'd keep mine in my bottom drawer and nibble on it every day until it was gone.  One year I received a pale pink New Testament.  I don't know where it is now but I remember taking it to church and Sunday school.

We would not be allowed to eat our treats until after breakfast and would be limited in how much we consumed before Sunday school.  Spring and Easter weather in the 50's was just as fickle as it is today.  My little sister and I would want to dress up in our best dress with our straw hats, little white gloves and good shoes.  We'd always want to go in bare legs but it would often be too cold so we'd wear leotards.  Those nice beige ones.  Remember them?  And we'd probably have to wear a coat too.

My younger sister, Margaret, and me one spring after church.
We wore matching dresses - a lot - even though there was 3 years between us.
These ones were grey and white seersucker with red calico collars and
hankies in the pocket.  We are wearing sheer white gloves and of course
our summer straw hats ( with elastic under the chin to hold mine on!).
My stocking was sliding down. :-)

We couldn't wait until the snow was gone from the sidewalks so we could
get rid of our winter overboots and wear shoes!  We'd play skip rope,
catch (ball), get our dolls and carriages out, bicycle and roller skate up
and down the block.  What fun we had.  And, lots of exercise too!

What are your childhood Easter memories?  Leave a comment and share
with me please.  Did you have a new dress or shoes?  Did the bunny leave
lots of treats for you?

I'll be back tomorrow with a special Good Friday post. 
Our church is presenting an Easter musical drama on Friday evening
and Sunday evening so we will be busy practising.
Hubby will be playing the keyboards and I'll be singing in the choir.

See you tomorrow.


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