Saturday, May 30, 2015

Into the woods

We have resolved to hike more this summer and summer has arrived in May so to the woods we headed early this Saturday morning.

It was just Lindsay and I as the boys were off to the Richmond Carving Club show where David won a second place ribbon and Allan, after a record ribbon haul last year, got nothing...because he hasn't carved anything this year as his creative outlet is entirely taken up with tying fly's to catch trout with!

Anyway - back to the hike.

We looked for something easy in the 5km range to ease ourselves in.

We drove 50km to Mount Seymour on the North Shore...up to the Ski resort now devoid of snow.  We put on our backpacks and headed off.

This is called a "hikie" in case you were wondering
 It looked easy to start.  A wide path.  Gentle down hill.

But soon that path ran out

And then the path looked like this.  I kid you not.

It was a scramble with very careful foot falls.  

We came upon First Lake in good time and met some Park Rangers out on the trail checking things out.

We didn't encounter too many folks and it was wonderful to listen to the Raven call and the breeze in the trees.

The rocky outcrop at the end of the trail was really the reason we chose this hike and BOY was it worth it.

The trip back was quicker as we knew where were going but by then the trail traffic had increased drastically making it less enjoyable.

We completed the 8km moderate hike in under 2 hours with a lot of stops to let folks by us on the trail (and the odd photo stop).

It was a great workout I think I will be feeling tomorrow and a great adventure with Miss L.  

We rewarded ourselves with lunch in the ever lovely Deep Cove.

Home to showers and a longish list of chores including gardening, hulling and freezing 6 baskets of local strawberries and doing laundry.

I am ready for my bed.  Right after this beauty...


Thursday, May 28, 2015

Point B

There is no way to truly be prepared for having a baby.

There is also no way to truly be prepared for the day when that baby turns 18.

But prepared or happens.

It happens today.  

That itty bitty wide eyed baby girl that was placed in my arms, whose eyes locked with mine and I fell deeply in love...that little girl with a mop of curls and a lot to say, that fiesty pre-teen desperately flattening those curls, dancing and singing, that smart and beautiful and fierce teenager, rugby playing, baking, cooking, reading girl...that 18 today.  All the love, all the laughter, all the sass, all the messy room, all the hair product, all the debating...we love it all!  

We love all of you!

I realise I have no objectivity here but this beautiful girl is such a joy to my heart.  She is an honest friend, a caring and loving daughter and a funny, smart, thoughtful and empathetic young woman ready to make her next move in the world.

Our card to her today says...

"One person can change the world. Just look at how beautifully you've changed ours"

Lindsay Erin Elizabeth...we loved you the moment we met you, and if it is at all possible, we love you more today.  

Happy Happy Birthday Beautiful.

I heard this poem a while ago and I gift it to you today.... with all my love. Mama

Point B

(you don't need to watch the whole TED talk although it is amazing - She opens with the poem).

Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Smarty Pants

For a long time I was the most educated member of my family.... formally speaking.

A couple of years ago Allan caught up to me with his BA Leadership Degree.

Now Lindsay is hot on our heels as she heads off to the University of Victoria to do a
BA Psychology in September and then passing us by likely going on to do a Masters in Child Psychology. breaking news...Allan has been accepted into Graduate School at the University of British
Columbia to do his Masters in Administration and Educational Leadership starting in September.

I am beyond proud of him and never doubted his acceptance.

And just because we seem to be in some Educational Vortex at the moment David is off on a new Educational journey at Richmond Virtual School (Link HERE to read more about this amazing opportunity) called SKY, also in September.

I predict that in a few years I will have become the least educated person in my household.

In the meanwhile I will have to be educated in being the wife and mother of University students (I am not going to lie that this is a scary prospect emotionally and financially!) educated in managing a virtual student and educated in amusing myself and maybe cooking ...seeing as two of my peeps will be away or very busy.

September 2015 is going to be a banner month is the life of the Byres North Clan.

                                   I guess, in our own small way,we are changing the world.

Saturday, May 23, 2015


From 39,000 feet I greet you with "Namasgeo"... The geography geek in me honours the geography geek in you ... If you have no inner geography geek this post will likely not excite you.  But as for me and my inner geography geek... We had a blast at 39,000 feet looking down on topography that I used to find so hard to decipher in Geography 300 at university.  Here are some of the gems from the 500 hundred shots I took above the earth between Vancouver BC and Edmonton AB.  

Monday, May 18, 2015


I once described Portland like THIS

Having just come back from my 5th or 6th trip to this fine City I can honestly say
it is a City that at once defies a specific description due to its widely diverse neighbourhoods and yet very much projects a specific personality....urban, well-heeled hipster.....or something.

I had the pleasure of showing EV some of my favourite haunts.... river walk, Portland Saturday Market, Powells, Pioneer Square, The Rose Garden and the food cart scene which, for the first time, was very disappointing.

Together we ventured to the Alberta Arts District for an American breakfast of Biscuits and Fried Chicken and sausage gravy which we are determined to perfect the art of at home...because...sausage gravy is the bomb. We wandered in and out of trendy boutiques while the natives queued outside the hot brunch spot on every block in their plaid shirts, rolled up jeans and bushy beards which never ceased to cause us equal amounts of amazement and amusement (we started calculating the  percentage of bushy beards in every store or restaurant we went in to.....never less than 75% btw).

We happened upon an art walk in the greeny elevated air of Mount Tabor and loved the craftsman houses as much as the art in them after we walked through their truly stunning gardens (including curbside veggie gardens of course).

We had a wonderful hour in the sun on a patio at a HopHouse...snacking and drinking beer.  

We had two memorable meals - one a fine dining experience in the NW at Paleys Place and one in a tent on a deck off a busy road but with amazing Thai wings at the  inimitable Pok Pok Noi.  (We will not speak of the traffic-induced brain fart that caused us to eat a burger and salt coated fries at Applebees on our endless drive to PDX..(we apologise for our culinary transgression but cannot promise it will never happen again because, as it turns out,  we are allergic to makes us do weird things).


We loved our little attic suite in a craftsman house in the Hollywood District and I can now unreservedly score one for AirBnB.

Two days in PDX felt like longer thanks to the time warp of weirdness and hipsterness and leafy green perfection.

We gave up hiking in the Gorge today to avoid triggering our second serious allergy..... borderitis....and were rewarded for our sacrifice with a 15 minute crossing...with wine.

EV - you are a travelling partner extraordinaire.....this is the start of something good my friend....Oh the places we'll go!  Thank you, thank you!

Portland - keep it weird - we'll be back!

PS ...I ate a grilled duck heart... I didn't like it but I did it! Thank God for beer to swish it down.