Thursday, July 23, 2015

Happy Summer Days!

Hello friends!  I hope you're all keeping well and enjoying these lovely summer days!  Can you believe how quickly the season is progressing?  August will be here before we know it!  I haven't posted on here for several weeks, so I thought I'd share some of the highlights of my summer with you today.  

Outdoor Picnics

Outdoor picnics really top my list of fun things to do in the summer.  A couple of weeks ago, my girls and I visited the Saturday Farmers Market in downtown Barrie.  We purchased some delicious pierogies as well as fresh artisan bread and walked over with our purchases to Heritage Park adjacent to the lake.  We chose a shady spot on the grass under a tall tree, laid out our blanket and enjoyed our yummy lunch!  

Summer Flowers

Last summer, I was driving along one of our neighbourhood roads and spotted the most beautiful zinnias growing along the edge of someone's home.  I stopped the car and went over to get a closer look, as zinnias aren't very common here. As I was admiring the flowers, the owner of the home (an older, mature man) came out to greet me.  I mentioned how beautiful I thought his zinnias were.  He was so pleased that I like them and went on to ask me if I would like a bunch of his dried zinnia seeds.  I of course said yes and thanked him profusely!  He explained how I should sow the seeds in the spring.  I did as I was told and planted them in my garden in late May.  About a week ago, the first zinnia bloomed!  And now they're all blooming!  I'm so pleased with myself! 

Baking Pies

A few weeks ago we went strawberry picking at Barrie Hill Farms.  The strawberries were so sweet and delicious, we came home with quite a haul, Most of the berries were gobbled up within a couple of days, but not before setting some aside for this strawberry pie!  It was utterly delicious served warm with a scoop of vanilla ice cream!

Picking Wildflowers

On this day, I went with Annabel to a playground near our home.  She rode her bike, we sat side-by-side on the swings, talked and laughed about nothing in particular at all.  On our way back home, we stopped over at a field to pick wildflowers, something we love to do.  Annabel filled her water bottle with buttercups and was especially chuffed with herself when she found a way to secure the bottle to her bicycle for the ride home.  She's too cute!

Ice Cream

My English girlfriends will know precisely what this ice cream is called, but for those of you who don't already know, these go by the name 99 Flake or simply a 99! It's really just a regular soft serve ice cream with a piece of Cadbury Flake bar inserted in it.  This was the very first time I saw an ice cream truck owner (on this side of the pond) with this option on their menu.  Of course, I had to try it.  It was an absolute treat and needless to say, my girls and I felt very "British" while eating our 99s!  

Beach Days
Nuno, the girls, and I headed to Wasaga Beach on Sunday for some fun in the sun.  It was our first real beach day of the summer.  I adore this "selfie" Nuno took of us!

And here is a photo of me and my girls in the water.  I'm not sure if you can tell from the photo or not, but Annabel was the only one brave enough to immerse herself in the freezing cold water! Anita and I barely made it past our knees.  Ha! 

And a sweet surprise!

My dear friend Martha Ellen, over at The Joy of Home with Martha Ellen returned from her holidays in England and has been blogging all about her adventures there! She purchased the above bluebell mug in a National Trust store for a giveaway on her blog. I entered and was so surprised to learn that I had won!  Look how far this little mug has traveled - from England, back to America,  and finally to my home here in Canada.  Thank you so much, Martha Ellen!  I have already enjoyed a cup of tea in my new mug.  I dream of seeing those same bluebells in England one day, just as you did!

Wishing you a fun weekend filled with the many pleasures of summer!   xo