Sunday, August 24, 2014

New Discoveries

You never know when you will discover something new about yourself. For many years I would scrunch my nose at the mention of camping. That was not my idea of a vacation. The bugs, the dirt, a tent? No thanks.

As I alluded to earlier, my brother convinced me to join their annual fishing trip this year. At first I was apprehensive, but as the departure grew closer, I started to get excited. It was going to be a lot of fun!

After one week completely off the grid (cell service is spotty/limited in Northern Ontario once you're past Sault Ste. Marie and non-existent where we were) I'm happy to say that I've discovered a side of me that I didn't know existed. I loved it! The landscape was breathtaking and it was amazing to spend a week without the conveniences of home. The soundtrack for the week was lapping water, the call of loons and excited squeals when someone caught a fish!

My brother John is a like a hybrid of MacGyver, Bob Izumi and Survivorman. He is passionate about the outdoors and is a wealth of information about not just fish, but most living creatures and their habitats. With endless patience, he has passed on this passion to Josh and Kaelyn who at 13 and 10 are experts at tying lines, hooking worms and gutting fish!

I'd like to take a moment to brag - I caught the first fish of the trip! It was a pike and we threw it back, but still! My nephew Jesse (the group's youngest) caught the biggest fish - also a pike that we threw back. He was beyond excited.

The majority of our time was spent fishing but we also found time for playing some games, campfires and lots of stories from Grandpa.

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

Summer Days

Where has the summer gone? I blinked my eyes and it's now mid-August. I guess time flies when you're having fun. And fun, I've had! The calendar has been jam-packed which is probably why my blog has been abandoned! Some of the highlights:
    Last weekend we had a family wedding. It was a beautiful sunny day for the outdoor ceremony. And I got to spend time with some of my favourite people.
    I did my first camping trip in a very long time. My friend Kim loves to camp and has tried to convince me the last few years to go. I've been getting in touch with my getting-in-touch-with-nature gene and agreed to go. Although it was a little cool for the beach, we avoided rain and I finished a book I had been reading. It was relaxing to have nothing on the agenda except sitting in my lawnchair or walking the beach.

    Despite vowing to never do it again the last time I had one, I hosted a yard sale during Old East Village's community wide event. The day was a gong-show from the beginning. I caught a cold the day before, it rained, I sold $32 worth of my junk (not a great hourly rate of pay if you average it out!) and to top it off, I got a $35 parking ticket at the end of the day for parking in front of my own house. That's cost me $3 to have that yard sale. Never again!

    I finally got to take my sister Connie out for her birthday! We had a great night out at Olive's followed by a Long John at Global Donuts. (who knew their donuts were so amazing? Well, Connie did!) It was nice to spend some uninterrupted time together with my sis.
    My Uncle Cliff, Aunt Penny and cousin Carol Ann came to visit...all at the same time! It was a mini-Murray reunion. We don't get to see each other nearly enough so it was such a fun night spent on the patio. And, it just happened to be on National Cousins Day. Next year we have big plans for a big reunion!

    My trip to New Orleans deserves its own post but I will say that I held a baby alligator. No kidding.

    In addition, I've had lots of lunches, coffees, dinners and campfires with friends here and there. I'm almost looking forward to things settling down when September hits!