After InCoWriMo, Lettermo and Write_On, I got a little overwhelmed with my mail pile and let it sit for a while. I'm in a frantic race to reply to all mail by Monday, August 26th when I go back to school. 8 letters to go. I'm going to do it. It is said "
In order to get good mail, you need to send good mail." The other day, I was straightening up the desk where my computer is and I saw my pile of postcards to put away. I realized that, compared to the average person, I get a massive amount of personal mail. I send a lot too, but this pile made me happy. I thought I'd share with you some of the great postcards that I've received just this month. For anyone considering Postcrossing, this is where most of these Postcards came from. (I apologize if I posted a few of these before, I didn't want to scroll through all the posts to check since I don't have a lot of time tonight.) It's so great to connect with people across the globe in a positive way.I've written where each card is from above the cards:
Remember my vacation from last post? This is the famous "Three Churches" I was talking about. I bought myself this postcard as a souvenir.
Luxembourg (And I understood most of the German without needing to look it up!):
(The Portland card is from a #Write_on pal.)
So, ask you can see, I get a great variety of cards.I have lots of other news to share, some good some not so good. Well, nothing bad, just a little stressful. I am going to let myself get back to school before writing those posts.
Anyone who knows our family knows that we really love to travel and love a good road trip. This year the destination was New Brunswick and Nova Scotia. I have been doing a lot of genealogy research over this summer so I decided to try to get a few things done on vacation too.
Our first day we traveled to Weldon, New Brunswick. According to records, my great-grandfather was born at Edgett's Landing and lived in Hillsborough, which is right next to Weldon. We stayed in a comfortable AirBnb and saw some nice scenery on the way.
Weldon is also near to Hopewell Cape, which is great since we couldn't get there when we visited Saint John in April. Of course we showed up at high tide, which I could've planned better. Hopewell Cape is on the Bay of Fundy, which has the largest tides in the world. The brown water is not exactly appealing, but the scenery is beautiful.
Is there anybody reading who is interested in genealogy? If you don't do family history research, you may not know that genealogy is a black hole that sucks you in for hours (years) at a time. I have worked on my family tree for a long time. I have many branches that are super confusing and seem to be dead ends. I had a few successful moments on my trip. My great-grandparents on my paternal grandmother's side moved from Canada. They were the Andersons and the McKinnons. (MacKinnon). Anytime I've connected with a McKinnon, they've talked about Scotch Settlement, which I figured was a town. It's not, it's a road. I found it... and the family cemetery. Ha! All my (dead) relatives couldn't hide from me here.
My great-great grandparents
The McKinnon homestead where I believe Absalom lived.
My 3rd great grandparents
You're probably thinking (if you're not into genealogy), "Wow, you're weird. Hanging out at a cemetery on vacation?" We actually went to a few. :) And I joked about my dead relatives hiding... 2 did and I couldn't find them at the cemetery they're buried at. I did randomly find other relatives at that other cemetery though so it was still a win.
Then we trekked over to Nova Scotia where we stayed in Mahone Bay. Here are some of the highlights because I could write A LOT about how much I loved Mahone Bay.I especially liked all of the people, and I met many. I will definitely want to return sometime. I didn't want to come home.
One of the images that come to mind when people mention Mahone Bay
are "the three churches." The first 2 are pretty noticeable, but the
third is kind of cut off in this picture. It's steeple is taken down and
a tree was blocking most of the church so I was happy with this
picture. Matt's family helped found this town and we did a lot of
genealogy work here too. I sometimes buy a Christmas ornament from our vacations as a souvenir. I bought one from the Amos Pewter Company. It shows a boy sleeping with these 3 churches showing out his window.
Ever see the show The Curse of Oak Island? The island is about 15 minutes away from where we stayed. They give tours on the weekend, but all of them are full for this year. They film on the island from Monday-Friday but we thought we'd stop by to look at the museum, which contains many of their finds. Imagine our surprise when we saw some of the cast, including Rick Lagina, hanging around outside. They invited all the people who were gawking at them to take a picture and they took time with each group of people that came over to chat. Rick Lagina was super nice and down to earth.
When we went back to Mahone Bay, we took this picture outside a pub and I later learned that this is where the Oak Island guys usually film the restaurant scenes.
Beautiful flowers everywhere. These were at the place we were staying.
An early morning letter writing session on our porch. I had a GIANT spider keeping me company. We tolerated one another.
There was this awesome place named The Biscuit Eater. Oh man.... I loved this place. It combined delicious food, coffee, tea and BOOKS. Look at all of the great areas you can sit- and I didn't include one whole room or outside. I visited this place 3 times! on our trip. The first time the whole family went for lunch. The 2nd time David woke up, came downstairs and asked where everybody else was. When I told him everybody was still asleep, he suggested going to get a "scone of the day." We did. This is when I took these pictures. The scone of the day was chocolate raspberry. It was so delicious that we stopped there a 3rd time before we left to take scones to go. That day the flavors were blueberry (pictured) and strawberry kiwi.
Ironically, when we decided to go on this vacation, our plan was to center all of our activities around Lunenburg, which is a UNESCO World Heritage location. We went there twice but I was so in love with Mahone Bay that we barely explored this town.
This summer I have intentionally stepped outside of my comfort zone to expand my horizons and grow as a person. This vacation, I met a distant relative that I had never met before. I actually went to the home of a stranger to have coffee and discuss our research? Remember the dead guys above? Check this out! My 2nd great grandfather is the guy in middle of the top row. His dad is sitting below him. I've never been a fan of facial hair, but these guys are cool. I took this picture outside, sorry for the glare.
We explored a park called The Ovens because of its sea caves. This isn't a great place if you don't like heights, but it's certainly beautiful. One of the girls who worked there said that they had seen whales who had come into the bay to feed a few days before we were there.
Panning for gold. He got a little bit.
Our second to last day we traveled to Halifax. There was a buskers festival and this lady, Jenny Jupiter, was my favorite. I caught an adorable moment where a little girl who must've been about 4 told Jenny that her dress was pretty. Jenny made a few gestures and blew the little girl a kiss. Super cute. I got this video from her website. I also really enjoyed a duet where the woman played the fiddle and the man played the guitar. If I'm friends with you on Facebook, there is a video of them there.
We visited the Maritime Museum of the Atlantic, which had some artifacts from the Titanic. That was pretty cool but I had hoped the exhibit would be bigger. Lots of maritime exhibits of course. The boys found 2 voicepipes in the museum and enjoyed chatting across the long distances. Tim actually whipped out his phone and was using Google translate to communicate in French with a Canadian boy.
We spent the last day of our trip in Saint John. I stayed at a Hampton Inn with a waterslide. I love Hampton Inn and stay there a lot. I was not happy with this one. My room was dirty when we got there. There were damaged items in the bathroom (broken lock and a chunk of the shower tiling was broken) and the pool was SUPER chemical-y. They also charged me an optional tourism lien. When I asked them about it, they told me it was a tourism lien, but not that it was optional. It was disappointing.
Back in April we visited Saint John and stayed right on the bay. We visited a restaurant called Gahan House and it was delicious. When I planned to revisit Saint John, the idea to revisit this restaurant accompanied. We had a nice dinner. It was a great way to end our vacation. I had brown bag fish and chips, which I got last time too. I even ate my fries with gravy, very Canadian. Then Tim and I shared this dessert, which reminded me of eating chocolate frosting from the container. Much more appealing than I made it sound.
There are many other things I enjoyed about this trip. If you want to hear more ask me about Curtis, the trombone player or Catherine from New Zealand.