About Me

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Delta, British Columbia, Canada
I took very early retirement from teaching in '06 and did some traveling in Europe and the UK before settling down to do some private tutoring. As a voracious reader, I have many books waiting in line for me to read. Tell me I shouldn't read something, and I will. I'm a happy, optimistic person and I love to travel and through that believe that life can be a continuous learning experience. I'm looking forward to traveling more some day. I enjoy walking, cycling, water aerobics & and sports like tennis, volleyball, and fastpitch/baseball. I'm just getting into photography as a hobby and I'm enjoying learning all the bits and bobs of my digital camera. My family is everything to me and I'm delighted to be the mother of two girls and the Gramma of a boy and a girl. I may be a Gramma, but I'm at heart just a girl who wants to have fun.

Monday, July 24, 2017

C is for COUNTRY

Welcome to ABC Wednesday, Round 21 with Melody at the helm.  This week I'd like to tell you a bit about the area where I live, just south of Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada.  Although I am only about a 30-minute drive from the city (I think Canadians are about the only people who define distance by time) I am in the countryside.  I have one friend (shout out to Josie) who spends a lot of time with another friend in Iowa (shout out to Russell) who can't believe I am so close to cows, chickens, and corn fields yet also close to specialty coffee shops and cafes, and someplace to purchase an ice-cream cake!

The village of Ladner is a cute little place where people come from all over the area, even from as far away as the north shore of Vancouver (it would take up to an hour and a half to get here) and I've even heard ladies exclaim, "I'm SO glad I heard of Ladner. It's so quaint! I love the chic little shops!"
We have a market every other Sunday from June through to September - it's always crowded! In July, there's the Tour de Delta when riders even from other countries come to compete.  As well, in July, Wellbrook Farm & Winery has their annual Summer Fest and this year also hosted the Deja Vu  Vintage Market.  In August, there is the antique car and quilt show that is also always crowded! We have many heritage buildings, too, including the Ladner United Church (dating back to 1925), the caretaker's cottage in Ladner Harbour Park (dating back to 1939) and Kirkland House out on Arthur Drive, which is a 100-year-old Edwardian farmhouse.
At the edge of the village, we have Ladner Harbour Park where fishermen and boaters moor their boats in the winter, and in summer, they fish or cruise around the waters here.  A little further out in the countryside you'll find farms where you can pick your own strawberries, raspberries, or blueberries.  You can stop at farms or roadside stands to purchase freshly picked vegetables like corn, squash, carrots, and potatoes.  There is even another winery out on Westham Island.  Animals you can find easily are cows, horses, and goats plus on the outskirts of Westham Island is the Reifel Waterfowl Refuge where you can walk amongst ducks, geese, cranes and other types of birds. In November, you can see the snow geese as they pause here on their journey further south. If you click on the link for the bird sanctuary, do check out the photos on the site!  They are amazing! Here's a shot I took of a crane years ago.
Yes, living on the edge of both city and country has its benefits.   If I want or need to go into the city, it's only about 30 minutes away.  But I think, at heart, I'm a country girl who loves and appreciates the peace and tranquility that comes from living away from the hustle and bustle of the city

I hope you enjoy a few of my own personal country living photos. Don't forget to turn up the sound, too.
Click to play this Smilebox slideshow

Tuesday, July 18, 2017

B is for BARBARA

"The name Barbara [bar-bara] as a girls' name is pronounced BAR-bra. It is of Latin origin, and the meaning of Barbara is "foreign woman." As an adjective, it was originally applied to anyone who did not speak Greek; it has the same root as "barbarian". In Roman Catholic custom, Saint Barbara is invoked as a protector against fire and lightning; she is patron saint of architects, stonemasons, and fortifications. Barbra is a spelling variant made familiar by singer/actress/film director Barbra Streisand. Many people may associate the name with the popular doll Barbie, which is a pet form. Other famous Barbaras are actress Barbara Stanwyck; writer Barbara Tuchman; First Lady Barbara Bush." 
(from http://www.thinkbabynames.com/meaning/0/Barbara)

I often wondered how I came to have the name Barbara as my second name.  So I checked it out online.  How popular is Barbara?  Apparently, it's still somewhat popular nowadays, but between 1940 and 1949 it was THE most popular name.  And I was born towards the end of that decade, so I guess my mother really liked the name, too.  I have a cousin who is just a couple of years younger than me and her first name is Barbara!

Since I absolutely adore flowers, I thought I'd check to see if there are any named "Barbara."  I discovered the Clemetis Barbara, which is gorgeous, so I thought I'd share it here.

Clemetis Barbara

Pot size when deliveredSent out in Large 2 litre pots, (8 inches deep x 5 inches wide)
Size when deliveredIn most cases plants are around 1 metre high (depending on growth rate & time of year)
Age when deliveredAll our plants are at least 2 years old when sent out


Deep pink

Pruning group

Prune Hard - Group 3


Sun or Part Shade


6 - 8ft (2 - 2.5m)

Flowering Time

June to September
I'm glad I looked up the name Barbara because it makes me like it a bit more now, especially since there is a beautiful flower with the same name.  I must see if I can find one for my patio - I'd put it in a big pot with a trellis on the wall so it could climb up.

Have you ever wondered what your name means? 

Tuesday, July 11, 2017

A is for AIRPORT

Welcome to Round 21 of ABC Wednesday, originally created 10 years ago by Denise Nesbitt and administered by Roger and team.  This is Number 1 of the hopefully new and improved format of ABCW to be administered by Melody and her team.  We welcome all newcomers and hope you enjoy participating because you get to "meet" people from all over the world!  I've been doing ABCW for 9 out of the 10 years and have made many friends through it.

So today, I'm going to tell you about the airport where I live.  Everyone loves an airport, whether it's because you're leaving to go somewhere, whether it's because you're arriving home, or because you are greeting visitors from afar. Lots of people enjoy watching the planes take off and land, too. I will be meeting dear friends from Wales in about 3 weeks and am already so excited to see them!
The Vancouver International AIRPORT is located about 7 1/2 miles south of the city of Vancouver in Richmond (where I grew up) and has a spectacular setting in the mountains.  In 1927, Charles Lindburgh refused to include Vancouver in his North American tour because of the lack of a proper airport. Two years later, the city purchased land on Sea Island (in Richmond), which replaced the original grass airstrip at Minoru Park.  During WW2, the airport and its original terminal, now the South Terminal, were leased to the Federal government and operated by the Department of National Defence and the Department of Transport. The airport was a base for RCAF training and the crews and their families were housed in a new town site on the island, named Burkeville after Boeing president Stanley Burke.  The present main terminal was completed in 1968, and has since been expanded to include separate domestic and international terminals. A north runway was completed in 1996.  Since 2011, there has been an increase in flights between Vancouver and Asia

The airport has a uniquely British Columbian theme with artwork of Pacific Northwest Coast native art featuring blues and greens to reflect the colours of the land, sea, and sky.  There is a lot of glass, which reflects the natural light, and arriving passengers walk across a platform featuring a large waterfall.  The aboriginal art collections include totem poles, wooden sculptures, and Bill Reid's famous bronze sculpture called "The Spirit of Haida Gwaii, The Jade Canoe."  When I departed from Vancouver last year, I saw they had installed a new aquarium - full sized on a wall in the departure lounge and I could not help but take some photos of it.
This exhibit is an entire wall of a waterfall. It's amazing to see when you arrive.
Finally, for a bit of humour, enjoy this photo of the "Running Man" trying not to miss his flight.

Many thanks to the awesome Melody for taking on such an adventure as ABC Wednesday. Also, thanks to her affable team who with assist and aid her by visiting all the contributions each week.

Monday, July 03, 2017

Z is for ZOO (Chester Zoo, England)

Recently, I watched a BBC TV mini-series called "Our Zoo," the story of George Mottershead and his family who founded the Chester Zoo in the 1930s.  At the turn of the century, when George's father took him to a zoo, he told his father that one day he would have a zoo with no bars! So, in 1930, with his family in tow, he bought Oakley House and 7 acres of land for 3,500 British Pounds and brought with him a group of animals from a zoo near Crewe.  Thus began his struggle to get the zoo going amidst opposition of the townspeople and even the local clergy.

However, George persevered and finally opened his zoo in 1931 and in 1934 The North of England Zoological Society was born. After the second world war, the zoo grew very quickly and now it takes up 125 acres of land.  One of the zoo’s slogans back then was, ‘Always building.’ George’s amazing energy, enthusiasm and skill earned him an OBE, and honorary Master of Science degree, and a term as President of the International Union of Zoo Directors.
Today, Chester Zoo is one of the top 15 zoos in the world, and highly respected for global conservation and research, as well as passionate campaigners for wildlife.

All this, because one little boy over 100 years ago cared so much about animals.

Some interesting websites to see more about the Chester Zoo:



http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2593529/Images-life-growing-daughter-owner-Britains-biggest-zoo.html  (This one has photos of George's little girl June playing with some of the zoo animals.)

And so we end Round 20 of the original ABC Wednesday, created by Mrs. Denise Nesbitt, administered by Mr. Roger Green, assisted by "moi" and a team of zany helpers who zoomed around each week making sure everyone had comments.  We now turn the ship over to Melody and her new team of assistants and wish her the very best in continuing the tradition.

Be sure to check out the new ABC Wednesday here!