Vacation!!!

Saturday we are leaving for a week to Wainfleet, Ontario.  It’s a beautiful place which I shared last year in this post: Summer Recap

This year my niece is working so it’s been a bit of a struggle trying to get things organized for the animals and farm work.  But hopefully it all works out well with the juggling of people and if not, we are only 35 minutes away and I can zip home if need be.

I have a special book I have been waiting, very impatiently I might add, to read while away. I shared about the book here: An Honest House .  I have to admit I have “sneak peaked” into the book a few times and have had to force myself to put it down!!  The reviews have been wonderful and are adding to my anticipation!

I hope you all have a wonderful week and I look forward to sharing some pictures from our vacation and my own personal review of the book!!  Tina

 

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Camping on the Farm

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Last fall we purchased a small cabin to put on our property.  It was made by the Amish as a “shed”.  We finished the ceilings, floors and insulated it to make it into a cabin our family can use year round!

Living on the farm, it is difficult for us to be away very often.  There are animals to tend to, gardens to be worked, grounds to be maintained, canning of foods etc.  This little cabin is our way of having a vacation feeling while on our own land.

Here is a glimpse into our little Cabin in the Woods now that it is in full swing and being used every day!!

Let’s start with a look inside:

I wanted a total rustic feeling experience.  I love how the exposed wood looks!  The ceiling has been insulated and installed.  We have 2 comfortable chairs on the one side and a kitchenette area on the other.  This cabinet was made by the Man using our old pasture fencing and leftover slate from our woodburner area in the house.  The fabric was from a friend of my mothers who made them for us.  The table pulls into a 5 foot table when fully opened and the loveseat converts into our bed.  The loft has featherbeds on top of foam cushion for extra comfort for the kids and their friends to sleep on.  There is no electricity but a few battery operated fixtures work perfectly.  We have electricity across at the ice shanty, but I don’t want to add it to the cabin!

 

A fire area is set up so we can cook our meals.  We kick it up to get some nice coals to cook over.

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A bug free dining area is also set up to eat under.  While I love the outdoors, I am not a person who likes to eat outdoors with bugs around so this is a perfect solution!

A badminton set and cornhole game has been added for some great family fun.

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A golf cart was added for “faster” access to the main house when needed and for bringing back supplies.  This is the parking area.

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My early morning view with coffee.  I love the horse pasture right behind us.  I can hear the horses softly nuzzle at night.

And while we are on our staycation vacation, we are close enough for our animals to interact with us as normal, I can enjoy my fast paced walks along the river, we can grill at the house if wanted and we can attend local events with the kids and their close friends!

We can drive one street over to where our boat is docked, jump on and enjoy a full day including lunch on the river and head in with a sunset tube ride.

We will do the nightly feeding of the animals and head back under the moonlight to the cabin for some smores or popcorn.

And at the end of a full day we retire into the cabin, play a few card games before getting a great nights rest.

We are beyond blessed and thankful every day for our camping area!!

 

 

 

 

 

Niagara River

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As you know if you follow my blog, we live on an Island surrounded by the Niagara River.  The river is fed by Lake Erie and eventually goes over Niagara Falls.

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This is an aerial view of our Island, Grand Island.  The little Island up in the left hand corner is Navy Island which is owned by Canada and is an uninhabited island.  The white spot in the left corner is Niagara Falls.

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You can see why I love where we live.

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This morning I took an early morning walk before heading into work.  I walked in the city of Tonawanda, which is across the bridges from our island.

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This is the large hotel located on Grand Island.  It’s a pretty view if you stay on the side facing the river.  The towers in the background are for a local TV station located on the island.

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At one point I came across this funny little decorated post.  It gave me a morning laugh for sure!  Whoever took the time to decorate it did a great job!

There are informative pieces of information scattered about the walkway which share a bit of the history of Grand Island and the Niagara River.

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There are little walkways built over the water where you can really appreciate the beauty of the river.

On the way back these seagulls lined the bridge as I walked over.  Only one was brave enough to stay and watch me without flying off!  Only one pole I saw marked and ironically it had one of my favorite numbers on it!  #28 is my son’s hockey number and our favorite player #Zemgus Girgensons from the Buffalo Sabres!!!

This bridge and walking trail is beautiful any season for walking!

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It was a very chilly walk along the river today.  I love being surrounded by the water and when the weather is warm this is my favorite spot to be, floating on our boat watching the sun set!

 

Little Cabin in the woods

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Our new cabin in our woods

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I have always wanted a cabin in the woods since I was a little girl.

My uncle and his wife had a small cabin that we would visit with our family a few times a year.  It was nestled way up on a hill and in the winter we would spend the day there with our entire extended family and sled down the hill, drink hot cocoa and have chili or soup for dinner.  In the summer we would play in the open fields and fish for catfish in their small stocked pond.  It was always such a cozy place to visit with the woodstove heating the house surrounded by family and full of fun!

We built a camping area behind our horse pastures a few years ago.  You can see how we enjoyed it in my past posts here:  Camp out visitors  and Staycation Vacation

This year the man decided it was time to make a more permanent addition to the camping area so we can literally stay back there all summer, fall and even winter with the addition of propane heat!  At our local county fair we designed a small “shell” of the cabin we dreamed of and had the Amish build and deliver it.

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Slowly we are finishing the inside to our vision. We started by building and painting a ladder for the kids to use to get into the loft which will be their sleeping area with feather beds to lay on and nice warm down comforters to snuggle in.  We designed it so it is large enough to fit 4 adults so they can have friends sleep over comfortably.  I found foam pad pieces in a hardwood design and we lined the floor of the loft with it.  There is also a full size window so they can see the horses and enjoy a summer breeze.  The railing comes from a garbage pick I found and we sanded and rounded it and cut it to size.  It’s perfect!

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Next came insulation inside and a rustic wonderful ceiling to keep it warm and cozy in the winter and cool in the summer.  I was thankful for the man’s brother coming to finish it off as it was hard work and I was tired of holding boards up with my hand and head while the man nailed them in! Thanks Uncle Tom!!!!

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Outside a new fire pit has been constructed so we can cook our meals and enjoy family and friend time around a bonfire.  The horses love being close by.  The man and teen planted a few beautiful pine trees we can watch grow over the years.  Wrinkles is already enjoying her new spot on the porch to relax while we work.

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The views of the ice pond, warming shanty, woods and sunsets are stunning from the porch!  Even though we are cleaning up and burning the leaves, the weather is so mild I am not sure when we will be able to ice skate on the pond.

Next up we will be building a small kitchen area and purchasing some multi-functional furniture for sitting and sleeping.

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This is our new little piece of Heaven right here on Earth 🙂

 

 

Beach Hiatus

Tomorrow kicks off a busy weekend followed by a week at Long Beach in Canada.

The teen queen is playing in our local Gus Macker Basketball tournament Saturday 2 games and Sunday 1 game possibly two if they win.  It’s actually being hosted right on our Island.  Excited to watch team “Avengers” play.  You can read about the tournament here:  Gus Macker

The boy is playing his first hockey game of the season with his new team, the Buffalo Saints.  He and the man will be traveling to Hamilton, Ontario in the morning for two games against the Hamilton Bulldogs.  Go Saints!!!!

And after sports we are heading up to beautiful Long Beach in Wainfleet, Canada for the week.  I am going to bring my computer this time and hopefully get the drafts written for a few posts I am way behind on!IMG_2924 (2)

This will be our spot for the next week.

Everyone have a great week and I’ll look forward to catching up on your posts when we return!  Tina

Island hopping

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Those who have followed my blog know we live on an Island.  There are a few little Islands in the Niagara River around our Island.  The only way to them is by boat.

This week we had the opportunity to spend some time boating, swimming, snorkeling and just hanging out at a couple of these Islands.

On Friday we spent the day at Strawberry Island.  Read history here:  Strawberry Island

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The kids are snorkeling along the shore

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The boy had a hockey friend with him and they all had a great day.

Today we anchored along Navy Island.  Read history here:  Navy Island

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The area we anchored had a little beach and was perfect for relaxing, cooling off, eating lunch and of course snorkeling.  My niece tagged along with us.

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And after about 4 hours on the water it was time for one last tube ride.

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And a nap for some on the way back into the marina

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