Saturday, August 24, 2013

Party Like a Scotia Woman!

How to party like a Scotia woman:  Have a garden party and invite all your favorite Scotia women.  It was not your typical garden party, it was a more literal garden party. Each person got to choose a vegetable or fruit from our garden and then made a dish using her vegetable for a pot luck dinner.  We also decided to wear trendy second hand clothes we purchased from Frenchy's (a place every self respecting Scotia woman knows!).

Your host.....the garden

The ladies on the beach embraced the garden party idea!  Everyone made something interesting with their fruits and vegetables.  The garden provided peas, green beans, leeks, onions, potatoes, tomatoes, lettuce, artichokes, broccoli, Swiss chard, zucchini, strawberries and celery.  The women turned all of this produce into a fun feast!  Chocolate Zucchini cake...  Strawberry Pina Coladas...Onion Casserole... Broccoli Salad! Delicious!  Creative!  Resourceful!

These ladies know how to turn produce into a party!
Every summer around this time the garden hits it's stride and produces enough food to feed a village.   Unfortunately, the bounty also coincides with the time of summer when people start heading home so there are fewer people with whom to share the harvest.  Most people are in that winding down mode, when you have to start cleaning out the pantry and the fridge and try to figure out what to make with peanut butter, a lemon, ketchup, tuna fish, and some raisin bread.  Rather than leave all of that food on the vine or in the ground I decided to share. My other option was to spend my remaining days making tomatoes into tomato sauce and strawberries into jam.... a party sounded so much better.

There were 5 sets of sisters at the garden party!  

The garden party may just have to become an annual event!  Judging by the 14 empty wine bottles left on the kitchen counter, I would say the party was a success!  I never said Scotia women were teetotalers!

Friday, August 16, 2013

Being Gigi

My summer started ages ago with the long road trip north in May and if I look at pictures it has been a pretty darn good summer.  The central figures of my summer have been these guys...


and John!
The trip began with the birth of John and getting to spend 11 days with their family while Mom, Dad, and the boys welcomed John.  I was there to cook, clean, help Mom, play with the boys and of course the most important job...rock-a-bye John.  A mere five weeks later they came to the shore for the summer!

When the boys got here they had to figure out shore life.  It is a different life than "real" life.  Anyone who reads this blog knows that the rules at the shore a a bit different than those at home and I'm not just talking trash sorting.  There is more freedom here, the leash is a little longer.  It is a place for kids to be kids and run around with sticks and play Star Wars, pretend, swim all day, stay up past their bedtimes and get dirtier than they ever get in "real" life.  In my mind, it has been a place for kids to learn some important life skills and lessons.  Yes, playing Star Wars with sticks instead of video games and getting dirty are life skills in my book!  Running around with a pack of cousins and friends of all ages, year after year, gives a person roots.

Star Wars Land

When Daniel and Christopher arrived they were fresh off welcoming their new baby brother.  Their lives had changed.  John was a little six week old baby and Mommy was still a bit tired.  When they left they were all still a little tired, this place does that to you, but they were tan and relaxed too.  John went from a newborn to a precious chattering baby whose smile can melt your heart.  The boys made friends that they will have forever... as long as they come back to the shore.

the first week...clean bathing suits and no tan lines

John's first week, not quite the smiling cooing little baby who left here five weeks later.

They all had a great summer and took to shore life like many of us have generation after generation.  This place gets into your blood!  Maybe it is all that red dirt....  Rachel was able to see the shore in a different light.  She came early in the summer and got to experience the calm and relatively quiet times.  She got to feel the pace begin to pick up and the craziness of the games.  Then she welcomed the return to the calmer days.  She also got to see a glimpse of what my life as a mother of four was like (survival mode) when Daddy was home working for three or four weeks and and what it felt like when Daddy finally rejoined the family (relief!).   I would not have traded a minute of it either!  I hope she feels the same way.

I am blessed to have been able to spend such a long time with my grandsons and my daughter.  I know there are families who live in the same town and get to spend a lot of time together but we live very far apart and I miss out on a lot of grandson moments.  This summer was my special time to get to know my grandsons.  I wasn't Gigi who shows up every few months and it is a frenzy of activity because we are together!  I was Gigi who they saw every day for five weeks, no frenzy needed.  It's a different thing if you know what I mean.

And now some cute grandson pictures from their summer....

Painting birdhouses in the basement.

Tummy time with John.

Tractor show!

Wearing neon for Don!
Exploring on the beach
watching the softball game
Mommy and Michelle with John and Ross, future friends for life!

Heading to the beach!

Bye guys!  It was a fun summer!  I love being your Gigi!

Monday, August 5, 2013

A True Fairy Tale

It was a perfect beach day!
Once upon a time there was a girl who loved the book, Anne of Green Gables.  She loved the story and the setting.  She spent most summers in Nova Scotia and like many girls, related to Anne in many ways.  She was headstrong, like Anne.  She also dreamed that some day she and "her Gilbert" might be married in Amherst Shore, Nova Scotia.

That girl came to the shore this summer with "her Gilbert".  They took a walk along the sandbars on a perfect beach day.  They headed out, hand in hand, for their first walk together on these beloved sandbars.  She had always wanted to have someone special to share this place with and this was her chance.  He had heard about the shore from her many times and was finally here to experience it for himself.  He loved it after only a few hours.

Let's take a walk.....

They left together for a walk as a couple and returned engaged couple.  "Her Gilbert" proposed to her on those beloved sandbars!  She may not be getting married at Amherst Shore... but she got engaged at Amherst Shore, on a perfect day to the man she loves.  When they returned, everyone asked if they had a good walk.  They were glowing....we all love the sandbars, but we don't usually glow after we return from our walk.  They just stood in front of us and glowed...and then announced that they were engaged!  The circle of friends and relatives all stood up, cheered and gave them a round of applause followed by champagne...on the beach!  Word quickly made it's way around the shore and people stopped by all day to congratulate the newly engaged couple.   It was the perfect beach day!

Congratulations Katie and James!
Thanks for a memorable day on the beach!
And they all lived happily every after!
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