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Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Weekend in New Hampshire!

Last weekend I visited my friend Molly who lives in New Hampshire, USA. I always love to see Molly and her children, Jadira and Diego. We usually go out to eat at Olive Garden (I love their soup and salad meal) and do some shopping. This time I kept myself on a very tight budget and only bought a few things for Noah. I was quite proud of myself too. Well, actually the Michael's store was cleaning out or something because there was hardly anything on the shelves so there wasn't much to tempt me. Ha! However, the highlight of my weekend was having lunch with Molly, her 6 year old daughter Jadira, and our mutual pal and friend Nicole at "Pickity Place", our favourite quaint little restaurant in the forest. Here are some photos I'd like to share. :)

"Pickity Place" is actually a little cottage in the forest turned restaurant. It was built in 1786 and was used by illustrator Elizabeth Orton Jones to illustrate her version of the book "The Little Red Riding Hood". Here is a side view of the cottage where you enter the restaurant.

There are such beautiful gardens full of herbs, flowers, vegetables and other plants. It is just plain breath taking. They use these fresh herbs and vegetables to prepare their delicious dishes.

Here is a photo of me, my friend Nicole and Molly's daughter Jadira in front of "Pickity Place". As you can see Jadira is adorable wearing her Little Red Riding Hood costume. We had told her the restaurant owners would ask her to work there as a hostess welcoming the clients.

Isn't she just plain adorable?! :)

If you look closely you can see a sheep in the little building.

On the left side it is part of the restaurant and the right side is their absolutely fantastic gift shop. I took a few photos inside as I just love this little shop so much.

They sell so many beautifully handcrafted items mostly made by local artisans. I could spend a small fortune here.

I've always loved potterie and theirs is gorgeous. Last November when we went to Pickity I bought a soup bowl with sandwich dish but I've yet to use it. It's just too pretty. Sounds silly, I know.

Soaps, oil essence, gift cards and other trinkets.

Various spice packs can be found and bought to reproduce some of Pickity's flavour. Last November I also bought some steak spices, patato soup mix, garlic bread herbs and lavender lemonade packets, all delicious.

Me in the shop, browsing, taking it all in.

My sweet friends sitting down for our lunch (Jadira, Molly and Nicole).

Our luncheon consisted of a delicious creamy broccoli with smoked Gouda soup. Next was a Quinoa and black bean salad which I had a photo of but just accidently deleted it. Grr... This salad was to die for. Mmm...

Main course was this delicious Strata bolognese and parmesan herb bread (not pictured). Do I need to say it was delicious? I wish I could make such lovely and yummy meals.

And, the dessert, strawberry and chocolate custard tart. This is the first time I have to say I didn't enjoy eating something at Pickity. The dessert was very bland in comparison to the rest of the meal. Of course that will not keep me away from Pickity in the future. Molly, Nicole and I are already looking forward to another delicious culinary experience at Pickity in the fall.

PS: The mail is moving again. The strike at Canada Post is now OVER. Yay! :) Stay tuned for a mail post within the next few days.

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

End of school year fun!

Phew! It's been such a busy past two weeks with both my school year and Noah's coming to an end. Last week I accompanied Noah's class on a field trip to an old time village called "Village D'Antan. It consists of actors dressed in period clothes from the beginning of the 20th century in Quebec. The buildings, clothes, furniture in the houses, etc dates from that time period. Those who work there either act out a role or explain what their character would have done at that time. It was quite interesting but it was also such a hot day. Noah of course had no real interest in knowing anything about this time period so we kind of scurried along the village although at times we were also with our group.

Noah with some of his classmates at the entrance to the village. I was so impressed and proud by Noah's classmates. Noah is mildly autistic and everyone in his class, and even in the school is aware of autism because of him. They are accepting of Noah and try to help him cope with his anxiety. They are like a small community taking care of him. It makes me proud to know they will grow up to be accepting of those who are different, unlike our neighbours (yes we still have some problems with them).

This building kind of made me laugh because it is where they made brooms and other things. What made me laugh is that French Quebec was a VERY religiously controled province up until at least the 1960's/1970's and I find these brooms look like they were made for witches. Ha!

A scene from walking in the village.

The General Store where we could buy cookies, candy, bread, maple products, etc. The products sold were similar to those they had in the old days. Noah didn't like being in the store as it was too crowded. It was quite overwhelming for him because of all the people and it was a new place to him. Autistics don't usually do well when something is new to them. Personally I liked the store.

Noah in front of a sign for the town shoemaker.

This past Tuesday we had a field trip for the children of the school where I teach. They are preschoolers. We went to a park, "Les Gorges de Coaticook", where you can have a poney ride, picnic, see farm animals and also walk in the forest. It was such a gorgeous day. This pretty round building is where they welcome you.

This is actually when you arrive at the park. It is such a lovely place.

Here are the sheep and the goat that greeted us at the farm. They were quite funny. I went into their living area with some children and we could feed them. Both children and animals were thrilled.

This evening has been quite busy with me making thank you cards for the teachers and getting their gift certificates organized (I had wanted to make gifts but didn't get around to it), and also making 25 chocolate suckers for Noah's class with only one mold with three monkeys. It's been a long process and I'm still not done. Aren't they just cute? I wrapped them up too to make sure nobody gets into them tonight.

Last Saturday I went to a scrapbooking crop. I didn't really do much of anything except chat though. I always find these crops difficult because I would need to bring my entire craft room with me. Anyhow, I was there from 1:00pm until 8:00pm. Everyone got a door price and I got this fantastic vintage set from Bo Bunny. Yay! The ribbon on the left I got as a prize for a challenge.

In other news, Canada Post is on strike and has been since the beginning of June. At first the mail was moving albeit slowly but on June 13th everything came to a halt so I've had nothing in my mailbox for two weeks. Makes me SO mad! At least legislation is being passed so they'll have to go back to work. Hopefully by next week mail be moving again.

Okay, so back to the chocolate. :)

Monday, June 13, 2011

Mail & Friendship Day!

Hi all! Hope everyone is having a delightful start of the week. I can't really complain here on my end of the world. I'm a bit bored today although I've plenty to do. I wonder if it ever happens to any of you where you just can't seem to sit and accomplish anything?! That seems to be the story of my day today. So, I thought I'd do a posting here to get me out of my Monday rut.

My mailbox has been fairly empty these days due to Canada Post's rotating strikes. There doesn't seem to be much progress as to when the strikes will end but at least the mail is still moving albeit slowly. Above are decos I received as part of some group swaps made by the same artist. The themes are; "Vintage Bathing Beauties", "Vintage Ballerina" and "Fizzy Moon". I think they are absolutely gorgeous.

She also sent some other pretty vintage themed decos as part of another swap.

This "All for Manu" themed deco was sent to me as part of another group swap. I think it is beautiful and this blurry photo doesn't do it justice unfortunately.

Here are some "Cookie Monster" FBs I received as part of another swap, along with the craft supplies below.

Then more supplies as part of another swap (below).

Sometimes when I'm feeling a little blue I go out to buy myself some craft supplies. It cheers me up to see pretty supplies in the store and bring something home too. So, I bought some pretty vintage papers and the box of journaling labels in the photo below. I love them!

On the weekend we went to "Friendship Day", an event held every year the second Saturday in June. There are many activities for families and children. Noah especially likes it because they open the outdoor pool and he loves swimming. This past Saturday it was quite chilly (15 celcius) and not very sunny but Noah enjoyed swimming despite the weather.

I, on the other hand, enjoyed the petting zoo. I could've spent hours there watching the animals.

So, while I was watching the animals, and after Noah had finished swimming, he and Jeffrey decided to do a bubble race.

After their race they joined me at the petting zoo.

I wanted to bring one of these guys home.

We then headed over to the Uplands Museum for cake and ice cream. It's such a lovely but small museum with beautiful outdoor grounds.

They serve English Tea at the museum during the summer months and I'm planning on attending one of the servings this summer.

Have a nice week!

Thursday, June 2, 2011

Mail & decos!

Hi all! :) We enjoyed such a lovely day yesterday, beautiful, hot and sunny, but today it is really cold, like 10 celcius cold. Brr... It hasn't been much of an exciting week so far although I've been busy, thinking of job prospects for the fall. On the weekend I was busy with crafting but haven't done anything since then although I was supposed to go to my painting teacher's house to work on teacher gifts. I will definately need to do that next Monday as there are only three weeks of school left. Here are a few photos I want to share.

Here is a deco I made with the theme "Black Cats" and I really like how it turned out. I've always liked that Black Cat Paris ad.

This is a "Vintage Hats" deco I made for a group swap.

Here is a "House Mouse" deco I made for another group swap. I just adore these little mice.

This is the very first deco made for me that I have ever received. Well, I haven't received any I have made for myself either so I was pretty excited when my friend Kimie returned this one to me. It was made by a fellow swapper, Valeriane from France. The theme was "Dessert Animals" and the entries are lovely. Thanks so much Valeriane for making this deco for me and to the talented ladies who signed it.

Kimie also sent me various other decos as part of a group swap.

Here are some cute "Matryoshka doll" FBs for another group swap.

Here are some FBs with the theme "All for Tomomi" for another group swap which I received. She also sent some pretty stickers.

Here is a wonderful letter I received from my friend Renata from Germany.

And, I would like to leave you with a gorgeous piece of art my son Noah made at school. It's a papercraft project and I love it. I'm planning on framing it and putting it in my art room. Love it! See yas soon! :)