Summer Recap

Living on a farm with animals, property, gardens, a pool, and grounds to maintain makes for a rare opportunity to take a vacation.  This year the opportunity arose for us to get away from our farm for a week stay in Long Beach, Canada in the beginning of the summer and at the end of the summer, countless boat trips on the Niagara River and Lake Erie, days and days spent at our local County Fair, and a few “date” nights for me and the man of the house.

This was made possible by my niece being back in the area as she is more than capable of handling all of our animal and farm work.  Couple her with my 72 year old mother who can care for the pool, gardens, and dog and we were able to have some much NEEDED family time away from the house.

I won’t bore you with hundreds of pictures and tons of details….ok…maybe a few.  We kicked off our summer right after the Fourth of July weekend by heading to Long Beach in Wainfleet, Canada.

 

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Our beach spot 

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This is a beach area and that is it.  There is literally nothing but a beautiful beach, one restaurant, a local marine shop that serves only the catch of the day fresh out of the lake, and a cute little putt-putt course.

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We treasure this area in Canada as the man and I both had spent time there when we were kids with our own parents/family. We first rented here in 2006 when our children were very young.  The cottage we rented is directly on the beach in a very private family owned area.  The family has owned the property and cottages for generations.  The picture below is of the main house built in the 1800’s.  You can see the house hasn’t been lived in or taken care of for years, but the granddaughter of the original owners (who is in her 80’s) has decided she is going to refurbish it.  I so want to be a part of that project!!!!  I did ask her if she would save the door (yes the partially boarded up white one on the second floor) for me.  She said she would.  I LOVE that historic piece!

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This is our cute cottage we stayed in while there in July.  There is no WiFi, there is no TV, there is no telephone.  But it is full of special family memories we created that will last a life time!

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We enjoyed our stay so much we rented the cottage next door to it (which was the one we stayed in in 2006) for the end of August.  This trip was extra special as we were able to celebrate the boys 11th birthday with some friends and family and we let the kids each have a friend stay with us for a few days and rented jet skis.  Even my niece and mother came for a few visits as this little paradise is only a 35 minute drive from our house.

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Here are a few pictures of our Island hopping on our boat and our local county fair.

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A big thank you to my niece, Brittany, and to my mother for the wonderful gift of “getting away” they provided for us this summer!!

Niagara Falls

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We live 15 minutes away from Niagara Falls.  Here are some pictures of what it looks like right now with the pictures from last spring.  The first set of pictures is the Falls.

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The second set is a picture of the rapids leading up to the Falls.

It’s an amazing sight to see so I wanted to share it.  You can find more pictures on our local news stations page

here:  Niagara Falls Frozen

Lake to Lake

Being on an Island surrounded by the Niagara River which is fed from Lake Erie and flows over Niagara Falls into Lake Ontario, offers us many wonderful things to do.

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Grand Island

On the second last day of the year we headed along Lake Erie to Hamburg, NY and had a fun Hibatchi style dinner.

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On New Years Eve we had an early dinner on Lake Ontario.  The streets lining Lewiston, NY were wonderfully decorated and the lights twinkled as you made your way down to Lake Ontario where we had a nice dinner overlooking a dock with a fishing boat ready to head out the next morning.

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And a few nights later we were headed to Canalside in downtown Buffalo, NY on Lake Erie for a fun night of visiting the new ice rink which opened a few weeks ago.

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It was a balmy 30 degrees but there are plenty of heat lamps along the rink and a warm room with benches.  There are little shops along the way, a few different food trucks and these really, REALLY cool ice bikes you can rent.

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Can you tell what I will be renting soon???  I can’t wait to try these.  But tonight was not the night as we were headed to watch the sad Sabres play.  The kids had fun heckling the opposing team 🙂

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And after another bad loss for the Sabres we headed back to the rink to watch the novice curlers trying to learn the game which is another feature of the new rink.

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I love the fact we have so many things to experience right in our back and front yard just over the bridges.

Remember when….

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Yesterday was the last day of school.  I can still remember the feelings I would have when school was over.  It was a feeling of freedom.  Especially during the elementary and middle school years.  I loved not having a schedule, knowing I would be camping for 3 weeks with my family, riding my horse all over the place, swimming, boating, sleeping in, bonfires and so much more.

Then in high school that feeling started to change.  Responsibility kicked in if I wanted to have a car and buy nicer clothing.  Those cherished summer vacations were cut short so I could babysit and earn money for gas, car insurance, and clothes.  In my junior and senior year, I almost dreaded school ending for the reason of having to work more and also not seeing and flirting with the cute boys for 2 months.

So tonight while my children are still in their innocent years, years of summer vacation truly being a vacation spent doing what children should do, we celebrated with a toast while in the hot tub.  We had the bonfire going, Chance’s best friend Graer sleeping over and their happiness was contagious.  I love them being home for the summer!!

Buffalo Zoo Visit

It was a beautiful morning so I decided to take the day off from work and treat the kids to a day at the zoo.  The Buffalo Zoo may not be one for the record books, but we are truly blessed to have something less than 15 minutes away that offers an insight into these wonderful animals lives!!  I do not think you can ever be to old or to young for a zoo visit.  When traveling we always try to schedule a quick trip to that state/city zoo.

I am not a photographer and this is truly the time I wish I was so I could capture the special moments these creatures offer the zoo visitors!!

These Buffalo represent our great city.  Enjoy!!

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