Welcome to our travels and adventures

Welcome to our travels and adventures

Making Roots

Now that we have most of our our creature comforts and our 'hobby house' is looking homey, we are settling in and sort of enjoying it! There are things about home ownership that we did not miss during our 15 years on the road. The last time we owned a house, the utility companies had not come up with a charge for delivery of there products. And usually, these charges are more than the actual price of the product consumed (water, electric or gas)! Oops, I am back on my soap box again....

Don't listen to me, we think we have a perfect little house for us and are enjoying being rooted again. We still have a few things yet to do – build a small room in the back room that houses the tankless water heater and provides a closet for mops, vacuum and some extra storage – after all, now we are not in the RV, we do not have to be so anal about what can or can not come into the house like we were with the rig. Here are a couple of pictures, the before and after.

Barb spent a wonderful weekend with
Terri celebrating Mother's Day. They went to a hotel for a couple of nights, took in a spa and had a few meals together, laughing and talking and having a great time together. After their weekend, they came back to Terri & Mark's for a BBQ dinner.


Barb is enjoying her new creativity centre. She has been busy designing, cutting and sewing a few projects together. Our electrical service panel is
just right of our front door and did not look great there. When we were renovating, we contemplated moving the panel into the closet across the room but we decided it was too big a task for the pay back so Barb came up with an alternative – a beautiful wall hanging built to cover the panel that can be easily removed to access the breakers when need be.

In the mean time, I started working on organizing – with Barb's help of course, the garage - my man cave without bar fridge, recliner or TV so it does not fall under the true definition of a man cave! Needless to say, with Barb's help, we got everything up off the floor and stored so we can find tools etc. I changed the large shelves so that there is now a work bench so I don't have to use the tail gate of the truck any more.

May 18th was a holiday here in Ontario and Terri invited us in for a BBQ dinner. She surprised us with a fireworks display and a bonfire in her new fire pit area near their re-built fish pond and water fall. Terri & Barb did some gardening and Mark & I moved a bed to one of Terri's friends.
Once we got back, it was miller time and kicking back and having a good time. It's been a long time that we have set fireworks off in the back yard and it brought back some great memories back when the kids were smaller. We would have the wheel barrow set up with sand and waiting for darkness. Once our girls were in their Pjs, we would light'm and enjoy the colours! That was a few years ago...

Well, that is enough for now, you are probably nodding off about now so we hope all is good where you are.... and here is another picture of where we were this time last year....

Getting the Creature Comforts

In our last post, I showed you the snow that we arrived back home and soon after we arrived, Terri and Mark stopped by to help us unload our truck and I think to ensure we got moved in ok, even without anywhere to park our weary butts! After all the dust settled, glasses raised to toast and they were on their way back to Toronto, Barb & I started assembling the counter stools we brought home with us. Once we had all 5 put together and the air bed inflated, we fell into bed with big plans for the next few days, shopping for more cozy furniture to find that fits into small spaces.

I know ya’ll are familiar with the phrase shop until you drop, well, we did. Most furniture stores are trying to sell the big oversized articles that seem to devour you when you sit in it. We do not have the space for that type so hello Ikea – they specialize in furnishing for small spaces. My cousin and hubby stopped by and he innocently said, who would ever furnish their home with stuff from Ikea – Barb raised her hand! Hey, it fits and it is comfortable, nothing more to say.

So, a day here, a day there and soon we start to see our space filling up with furnishings. We also learn more about the area we live in and where more shops are to fulfill our needs. The paper construction blinds we used to provide some privacy didn’t quite meet our needs now that we are living in the house so draperies are on the list. Barb finds some ‘ready made’ drapes that suits her and with a little work, she is able to make them fit perfectly.

CRACK! What the hell? As I rolled out of the airbed – one on a
frame so we were up at normal height – one of the cross pieces broke and if we continued to use it, threatened to puncture the air mattress so now we are in a critical need for a real bed. We use a Sleep Number mattress n the rig and were hoping to do the same here but it does not work logistically - no retail in Ontario so we’re faced with using a regular mattress. One of the ‘shop til you drop’ days, we found a mattress shop and stopped in to just take a look – well, we left there owning a new bed that will be delivered AND set up in a couple of days. And none too soon either, the day of delivery, another cross piece broke as I was rolling this bag of bones off the air bed!

Have you tried to live out of a bin and/or a suitcase for any time? We need somewhere to put our clothes, we need drawers but not the big heavy looking units that the furniture shops peddle. We found what we wanted with some assembly required so I’m sure you’ll know where we got’em.

Now that we basically have places to put our butts and somewhere to sleep,
we focus on the spare room – or shall I say Barb’s room of creativity. We need to use this space for double purposes, firstly as a space for Barb to create and secondly for guests to be comfortable in a spare bedroom. Again, Barb had a plan and we were able to fulfill her needs at
Ikea and a lumber shop. So, we have a spare bed and a desk for her machine and computer and by placing a interior door across the bed side, she has a work table for her fabric creations.
Now that we have the mood setting thing, a TV is essential. It is mounted right over the fireplace and look ma, no wires!
 Now, I think we have done and said enough for now so we’re off to see Corrie and family on Easter Sunday and look at the weather that excited us so much to drive to Toronto in!

 Not sure how many of you followed our adventures of last year and the challenges we faced with this renovation but here is a shot of where we were about this time last year…..

The Trip Northward

After an exciting last few weeks at the Plantation, we have the truck loaded to the gunnels, including the back seat to over capacity – almost no room for the cookies Marti made us as fuel while on the road! Our trip without the rig means we have to use public washrooms which is one of the downers for leaving it behind. Well, we are not wrong as our first nature stop was at a Marathon station and Barb came out totally disgusted with the filthy conditions – sticky floors, tissue scattered all around and a round toilet seat on an elongated bowl and the front part of the bowl was black. She told me in graphic detail how she had to be a contortionist so her jeans didn’t contact any of it!

1503216 Mar 24 Meeting Paul Dueteneyer Lydias FianceWe made it safely to Lydia’s new home in her favourite 1503218 Mar 24 Supper At Roccos Pubcommunity of Bent Tree, just outside of Jasper Ga. Paul had to meet us at the gate to ensure we didn’t get lost driving to the house. We had a very warm welcome from Lydia and Paul with hugs. After we played catch up and cocktails, we went out for dinner at one their regular haunts – again, what more can you ask for, good food, good friends and good times – life is good!

1503225 Mar 25 Paul Playing Senior BaseballOn Wednesday, Paul had a regular ball gam1503226 Mar 25 Lydia Barb Watching Ball Gamee with a bunch of other old cronies! Paul was out in left field – no, I mean his ball position was in left field, not his personality! Barb, Lydia and myself were his personal cheering section which I’m sure embarrassed him some and I’d bet he heard about the rowdy cheering section at his next game. Anyway, we all had fun and then off to lunch – where would we be if we didn’t eat! After fortifying our appetites, we wandered – some call it shopping – around an outlet mall where we found the remainder of our dishes for the house. The rest of the day was laid back and relaxing back at the house.

1503231 Mar 25 Waterfall By Memorial

1503235 Mar 25 Side Back Of The House






1503236 Mar 25 Sitting Out In Screened Porch1503237 Mar 25 Barb Lydia In Kitchen







1503243 Mar 26 Oh My How PrettyThursday, we toured the beautiful Gibbs Gardens near Ly1503253 Mar 26 Barb Lydia Paul On Bridgedia’s. I can’t write it all here so I encourage you to follow the link I provided to see and read more, I can not do it the justice it deserves. We walked 90% of the gardens, walked up to the manor house – Mr Gibbs still lives there – and made it back to the snack bar to replenish our energy levels! As you would suspect, Barb’s camera was very busy and I have tried to give you a synopsis of the pictures she took. I hope you enjoy.

1503256 Mar 26 Daffodils Cover The Hills1503275 Mar 26 Sitting Out On The Patio At The Manor1503278 Mar 26 Oh No The Cougar Got Paul1503286 Mar 26 Entering The Japanese Gardens1503298 Mar 26 Cherry Blossoms Along The Path


Friday we leave Lydia and Paul to head north onto Terri & Mark’s cabin in Ellicottville NY for the weekend before we cross the border back into Canada. 1503302 Mar 27 Hitting A Blizzard In OhioThe weather and road conditions were fine until we neared Cleveland and all too soon, we realize we have to get off the road before we find troubles. The snow was thick and blowing hard and we still had about 4 hours of driving ahead of us. We were approaching an exit with many cars in the ditches, a van pulling a travel trailer did a 180 and was against the guard rail pointing at us. The exit couldn’t come soon enough! It’s crazy how many drivers think they are expert winter drivers and ignore the conditions, driving faster than the conditions warrant and eventually, they end up in the ditch! Anyway, I digress with my narrative! we pulled into a Comfort Inn and waited our turn to check in – wow, we were quoted $189 for a night. When I asked what happened to the $39 dollar rooms, I was informed that it is March Break and they have an indoor water park – well, laudy dah, we don’t have kids and are only there to get off the road due to the weather. The attendant did advised that she would take $10 off the rate if we took a room without a nuke or a fridge! Wow, I was so ready to take 2 rooms at that rate! NOT! We went across the road to a motel of the same chain and got a room for $89. Luckily, there was a generous gentleman behind us that gave us a coupon that took another $10 off the rate so we thought we had won the lottery with only paying $79/night for a room for the night!

1503304 Mar 29 Wintery Day At The CabinThe next day (Saturday) we woke to clear blue skies but cold so after a quick breakfast, we were on our way again. We arrived near 1ish – that gave Terri & Mark a few hours of skiing on the last ski weekend. After we arrived, had a beverage and caught up, we took off to the EBC for lunch and of course, more brewskis! We toured the ski hill, walked around the deck as the day was winding down and the skiers were departing so we went into the chalet for some apr├Ęs ski.

After some Sunday antique shopping, we toured their new house they bought around the corner from their current place. They are 1503310 Mar 29 Their New Rental Cabinbecoming rental moguls of Ellicottville! We loaded back into the truck for the drive to our little ‘hobby house’. We arrived to be assaulted by snow plies – yuk! Thanks goodness, we have a nice neighbour who kept our driveway clear all winter so we didn’t have to shovel or walk through it to unload the truck. We no sooner had the truck empty and Terri & Mark arrived and we all go out for dinner! Another nice arrival….

So, I’ll leave you here as we settle into our house without furniture and TV but we do have an airbed to lay our weary bods down until we get a real one! Hope all is well out there,,,,1503314 Mar 29 Arriving At The Hobby House