Monthly Archives: July 2014

Camping near Caroline, AB, July 4-6, 2014.

Camping is not for wimps.

I am known to be a little wimpy when it comes to leaving the comforts of home at night – during the day – I am fine with getting a little dirty or uncomfy – but I like a clean bathroom, warm shower, jacuzzi tub, and pillow top mattress. Well, I camped at my friend Kella’s property near Caroline this weekend and had a fantastic time!

Kella’s property is approximately an hour and 20  minutes from the north end of Calgary. It is a beautiful drive – often one does not appreciate the beauty in their backyard, for instance while driving out there I know I would have asked Kella to stop a few times to take photos if we were travelling through a foreign land. There were beautiful fields of yellow (canola), a row of silver quonsets, camel coloured cows with their babies, tiny town with its ol’ western pub and pick up trucks. Very familiar and very foreign!

Cute little country church

Cute little country church

photo 2

Country Roads……












After a bit of lawn care, we had a BBQ, glass of wine (yes, only glass), bonfire and good conversation. The weather was perfect. The mosquitos were annoying, but otherwise things were perfect. (other than the outhouse….which is an eco compost toilet that to my pleasant surprise/shock  did not stink at all…..until the next day after 4 more people came).



Things I learned or rediscovered:

1) I like riding a tractor mower – it is fun!

Toot Toot











2) Just because the wine has a picture of a cute ladybug doesn’t mean it will be a yummy, smooth, full body wine….especially at $20. (sorry for bringing such crap Kella)….however, drinking less made trips to the outhouse less frequent!

3) Do not sit too close to the fire with your flip-flops – they will melt!!!

4) Kella’s camper-trailer-house thingy is quite spacious.Not an inch of space is wasted. It made me realize that you really don’t need very much room to live in. My house seemed enormous when I got home. Maybe too big?? But hey – in a small place where would I put the 5 indoor toilets???

5) No matter how great an outhouse is – it is kept outdoors for a reason.



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Carmel Valley, California. June 18-22

Carmel….never disappoints. How could a place that sounds so much like caramel?? I’m often nervous to revisit a place I loved but this trip made me fall in love with this area of California even more.

We had wonderful weather – that perfect summer weather – sunny, warm, with a mild breeze so you are comfy – know what I mean? Well, if you live in Canada you probably do not.

We spent a lot of time outdoors, walking,hiking and playing tennis. We even had outdoor pedicures complete with a glass of chardonnay and a cheese plate! We had supper at the #1 top rated restaurant at the hotel we were staying at (Bernardus Lodge) which was lovely, but we probably enjoyed our meal at Baja Catina more! Maybe we are enjoying “the simple life” more these days.

Carmel-by-the-sea is a picturesque  little town with great shops and bistros. The town is even more quaint with many buildings that look like they are out of fairytales. Carmel-by-the-sea is always cooler and foggier than Carmel Valley – a 10 minute drive away.

Thatched Roof Store Lobo National Park












Last time in Carmel we saw a man who I have named “Fernado Ferrari”. He is a man in his 60’s who was hanging out on main street listening to music being played from his Ferrari. He was sporting a bright red Ferrari jumpsuit, red Ferrari baseball hat, red Ferrari runners, and I am guessing he had red Ferrari undies on too. Apparently he just hangs out there – looking cool. I was hoping he would be there this time so I could get a photo of him, but no such luck. Something to look forward to in the future.

While we were en route to Carmel, we found out that our dear friends Juli and Brent were near San Francisco visiting family. We were able to skip our Monterey to San Fran flight and drive to San Fran – enabling us to spend a few hours with our friends and their family. We had such a great visit and were so disappointed when we had to leave at 3:30 to catch our flight. We should have stayed, because after hours and hours of our flight being delayed, it was cancelled. We ended up taking a flight to Houston after midnight, then flying to Calgary. Our 3 hour flight ended up taking us 19 hours! We were annoyed – not only by United’s terrible customer service and disorganization, but for missing out precious time with our friends.

It was a great time, despite the travel delays!


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