Saturday, October 22, 2016

Tea in the Village

Today I had a very pleasant outing with two lovely ladies ... Margie from Tea in the Valley, and Judith from Lavender Cottage. We are all part of a group of Canadian gals who participate in a tea and card exchange throughout the year. This is now the second year for our group, and the second time I've had the pleasure of meeting both of these fun ladies. We met up in the Village of Markham, Ontario at The Old Curiosity Tea Shop for a Victorian tea. The tea house was a cozy place with lots of old-fashioned decor. 

... and we fit right in!! ha ha!

left to right ... Margie, Judith and me

Margie and Judith were sporting their new fascinators and looked wonderful. I was not so daring, but I noticed on the way into the tea house that they had "Fancy Hat Fridays" ... something to consider another time eh?

The tea was served in individual pots with pretty china tea cups. This was my tea cup, which I now forget the name of. We had a tiered tray of fancy sandwiches and then sweet desserts! I enjoyed a wonderful Earl Grey tea with ginger ... perfect for our blustery fall day today.

The three of us had such a good time chatting about all things bloggy and family related. We were hoping to have a few more people, but they were unable to attend. Maybe next time we get together we'll be able to fill all the seats at our table ;)

I snapped this photo as we were leaving (sorry it's a bit out of focus (phone!), I didn't notice till I got home). But you can see all the jars of loose tea you can purchase, and it seems quite a few people come in just to buy the tea. Maybe I should have brought home some of the delicious tea I had! I can easily pop back there sometime as it was a very quick 20 minute drive on the toll highway.

While we were heading out the door, we noticed a display of pretty jewelry which was made from bits of broken china. I didn't get a photo of the whole display, but I got talking to the tea shop owner, and she said they were made by a woman in Kingston. When the tea shop owner first saw the jewelry, she quickly struck a deal with the artist and has these pieces for sale in the tea shop now. The tea shop sends the artist bits of broken china to make more jewelry, and you can even send your own broken china to the artist to be made into something special. I love that! Makes me want to "accidentally" break a tea cup! I really liked the unique pieces and one of them came home with me ....

It reminds me of some of my own blue & white china.

Well I'm glad to finally have something to share with you all ... I haven't been blogging much and I have only been visiting others very sporadically. I never know from one week to the next when I will have time to post and visit, so thank you for stopping by even though I'm a bit unpredictable these days. Stuff happens, right? Our weather has suddenly turned cold and we've gone from wearing shorts last weekend, to needing a winter coat today! Furnace has been turned on for the first time this fall, and it probably won't be shut of till next May ... back to the short white days soon!

Have a great weekend folks!


Thursday, October 06, 2016

Turkey Craft & Chair Art

With our Thanksgiving coming up this weekend, I had the daycare kids work on a turkey craft.

We used a cheap paper plate for the base, and glued all the handprint "feathers" around the outer edge. Then we painted a small dessert paper plate brown, and glued that in the centre. In the centre of the small plate we glued another circle cut from construction paper and glued on the facial features. A few dyed chicken feathers were tucked under the dessert plate (just because I had them).

This guy went a little wonky in the face, 
but these are the creations I like the best from two-year olds.

"Gobble Gobble!!"

On another note, I don't think I ever showed you the creative chair my son made in his last year of high school. This was an art project that they do each year with the Grade 12 classes. They had to make something creative with a chair in a theme. My son knew he wanted to make something military, and he wanted it to be chair with army tank treads. We thought it seemed a little far fetched, but we helped him find all the odd bits and pieces at flea markets and our basement. It turned out amazing once the spray paint went over all the wood and metal bits of junk on there. This was one of the chairs that I had refinished in white for my daughter for university. We got one last use out of the $4 chair ;) His art teacher asked if she could have the chair back to show other students. As much as I love what my son accomplished here, and I think it looks great, I was happy I didn't have to find space for it in my small home.

Thanks for stopping by!


Sunday, October 02, 2016

Abandoned Bridge & Sawmill in Algonquin Park

While camping in Algonquin Park last weekend, we took our canoe on Canoe Lake and paddled to Potters Creek. We had wanted to do this in the summer, but ran out of time and good weather. My son had told us of an old bridge across the creek, and we wanted to see that.

Below are the last remaining timbers from that bridge which connected the main railway line to a sawmill across Potters Creek. The timbers are breaking down a little bit more each year, and are silvery grey with age. I took these photos from our canoe. This bridge was originally built sometime between 1933 and 1940 by the Barry's Bay Lumber Company (owned by Messrs. Omanique). 

The same bridge

My son told us back in the summer that there was some kind of stone "wheel" and a foundation alongside Potters Creek. It's actually the foundation for the sawdust burner that was built here on the edge of the water to burn the heaps of sawdust created by the sawmill.

You can see the square concrete platform below, and the circular foundation for the burner on top of that. Where we pulled up our canoe just to the right of this, we saw all kinds of crumbling red bricks along the shore, which were used for part of this structure.

When you look in the water around this area, there are all kinds of old pieces of lumber lying on the bottom of the creek.

The top of the circular section of the burner, now filled in with pine trees

Behind the burner foundation are lots of trees crowding up to the shore of the creek. We followed a short path that led into the trees ...

... and were so surprised to find this!

This is the old Barry's Bay Lumber Company sawmill! Previous to that it was the Canoe Lake Lumber Company, and was built around 1923. The trees have completely taken over this site, and all that is left are a few outer walls of this abandoned mill. With the shadows of the trees on the walls, it was quite camouflaged in the forest. When it was built, the trees in this area had all been chopped down, and the shores along the creek were bare.

A hole in a wall that was heart-shaped ;)

We walked around the remains of this old mill and you can't help but think of the men that worked and lived here all those years ago. It seems most of these old mills ran into financial difficulties along the way and were eventually shut down and abandoned. I'm glad the park has left this structure standing, although their policy is to tear down any old building in the park. I think it's interesting to get a glimpse into the past through these old relics.

you can see the cables embedded in the concrete walls

an old bedframe

Looking into the building ... more forest!

Trees have lived and died within the confines of these walls.

Heavy mill equipment was bolted to this raised concrete slab (below).

The next three photos are the sawmill in operation, and then at stages of decay.

You can see the same walls that are still standing today, and the
sawdust burner foundations to the right in the water

And just as I took this last photo, someone ... or something drifted into the doorway ...

hmmmm ... a former employee of the sawmill?
It was time to go!

Thanks for stopping by!