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Sunrise at Tombstone, AZ

Sunday, 18 February 2018

Trip to Vancouver Island

Not much happening here at Dad's house, just waiting for the will to be probated so we can move forward. Earliest projected date for that to happen is the end of the month. With that in mind, we decided to go over to Vancouver Island for a few days, visit with the kids, see some properties and have dinner with our long-time friends Gary and Janice Glover.

Thursday morning we left on the 10:15 ferry. Once we arrived in Nanaimo after checking in with Jason, we dropped Freya off and headed to our favorite sushi place (Nori's) for lunch. Jason had stuff to do and Kristi was in a meeting after work.  By the time she came home and all together, we only had an hour or so to catch up before bed.

Friday we all had a very busy day ... Kat was coming over from Squamish to meet up with Kristi for the 5 day "Girl Adventure". They were supposed to meet up with us down in Arizona, like last year, but the plans changed when we came home due to Dad's condition and eventual death. The girls are headed to Mount Washington for snowshoeing.

Image may contain: 1 person, smiling, snow, mountain, sky, outdoor and nature

Walked the beach in Union Bay in the afternoon
Ray and I headed off to view properties, first up being some recreational properties at Horne Lake. Kristi and Kat met us there as well as Jason. If we buy this kind of property, it is for the whole family as the kids would have to handle any maintenance as it would be theirs as part of their inheritance in the future. We are planning differently than my Dad did, by setting up a family trust in advance. Originally we were going to buy a condo, but with having Freya, that posed many problems and we still want to travel down south for a least a few more years. A recreational property sounded like the better idea for this time in our lives and would put us back into the housing market. We also checked out a patio home and another condo in downtown Nanaimo.

Here is a picture of our "dream home" on the lake.

homes for sale

This place was awesome but as I do not have any $$$ yet we will have to wait a few weeks to put in an offer. Both Ray and I are quite anxious that someone else snaps it up ... but as it is rather pricey we have to believe it will all work out if it is meant to be. We love the timber frame constuction cabins, especially with Ray being in the forest industry most of his working life.

#407-3676 Horne Lake Caves Road QUALICUM BEACH

Saturday we hung around the house most of the day as Jason headed off to Victoria to see his parents and we babysat our grand puppies, Zeus and Athena. Saturday night we took Gary and Janice out to the Longwood Inn for dinner. A great visit was had. Of course we forgot to take pictures. This is a picture of them with their son, Kyle from Dad's Celebration of Life.  Gary got his haircut since then and doesn't look like Steve Bannon anymore lol.

Sunday morning we woke to 8" of fresh snow. Yikes. After checking the DriveBC cams we realized Nanaimo got most of the snow in the area... not Surrey.  So, we packed up and made the 10:15 ferry back. Jason had come home at midnight Saturday night as he knew snow was coming and did not want to be stuck in Victoria.

View out my bedroom window at Kristi's.

The dogs love the snow though!

Freya at 6:30 am

Kristi's dog Athena
Need to find the car!

A pretty packed few days and we are happy to be back at home in our own bed.

Sunday, 11 February 2018

A visit with long-time friends.

This week has been fairly quiet, waiting for the time to pass so Ray and I can move forward with putting the house on the market. I had some knee issues (arthritis) so stayed pretty close to home while Ray went a couple of times to the local pool to use their hot tub. Other than a few outings for groceries and lunch on Friday at White Rock, we stayed home. Fortunately after taking a bunch of anti-inflamatories for the week the knees are much better. :)

Saturday we had made arrangements to meet up with our long-time friends, John and Joane Mahon, who live in West Vancouver. They are facing the same decisions we are, contemplating selling their large home and downsizing into a condo. John has had a tough year with his health and no longer can look after their yard and gardens even though that is his passion.

After a visit at their house it was off to lunch at the Village Taphouse in West Vancouver located in the Park Royal Mall. A lovely pub with great food, ten minutes from their house. We had our first passengers in our new car with Joane and I trying out the back seat. Very comfortable.

Lunch with John and Joane Mahon
It was great catching up with them as we've not seen each other for probably at least a year. After lunch we made our way back to their house, visited a bit more and then Ray and I headed back home to Surrey. The traffic on Saturday is much better than trying to visit them during the week.

Hard to believe another week has gone by again. On the upside the sun finally came out late Friday afternoon and Saturday dawned to be a glorious sunny day. It certainly uplifted spirits.

Friday, 2 February 2018

Rain, Rain, Rain! January 28th to February 1st

Sunday, I had 2 of Betty's kids here who live back east, to pick out some stuff they wanted to take and collect all of Betty's personal artwork off the walls. Quite an emotional event for me .... Felt really intrusive as they wanted a bunch of my Dad's stuff (from my mother's time) and I kept having to say no. Fortunately they will not be back until the house is sold and emptied to pick up an organ and antique hutch that was written in the will and the barrel of things that were Betty's. A hard day for me.

Monday, Ray took me out for lunch at an old pub in Port Moody, The Frog and Nightgown. We have not been to this place for a number of years. They are a well-known British Pub that serves "Toad in the Hole", a giant yorkshire filled with roast beef or steak and mushrooms. We opted for a lighter meal before going to visit my Aunt Norma in advance of her birthday.

Look how "dapper" he looks. :)

Aunt Norma and Uncle Ken Christmas 2017  Love those guys lots. 
With the visit from Betty's kids over, this past week has been busy with junking out cupboards and filling up a bagster bag in preparation for bagster.com to pick it up. Wednesday the rain held off for most of the day so it was the time to get  the first load out ... the rest will have to wait until the house is sold which probably won't be until end of April at the earliest. Some junk collectors came buy and asked permission to go through the bag. They had already picked up the stuff Ray had left by the road, a file cabinet etc. Ray said yes, as long as they put it all back in the bag the way it was. It turned out they took a bunch of stuff and are coming back for some larger items that we could not fit into the bag. Yeah. More stuff gone that I do not have to pay for to remove or figure out who would take it as a donatation. They even took Dad's old mattress set. A great time-saver. Ray was able to put the last of the smaller items of junk from the greenhouse into the bag as there was more room. :) I think we have gone through every cupboard now and have only kept things I need to still use or things I will give to Larny when we empty out the house.

The house is starting to feel "more like our home" with removing reminders of Betty and Dad. Getting rid of all the clutter and old nick nacks, putting in our things, clothes and kitchenware etc. and having our new bed is awesome. Glad we are in a "bricks and sticks" at this time of the year here in the Lower Mainland only because of the horrible wet weather. Being in a motorhome with this dampness day after day would be a challenge with the dog. Fortunately we do not have any flooding issues here as they are having in other parts of Vancouver and Vancouver Island. Ray's brother's place has been flooded under the house twice over the past few weeks as French Creek has swollen so big, it has changed course. In Lantzville a whole chunk of road has collapsed and fortunately a lady who fell into the hole with her car was rescued successfully.

Hard to believe she made it out alive! (from Google)

A massive hole on Melrose Road in Whiskey Creek. Photo courtesy Oliver Watson.
Other washouts on Vancouver Island (from Google)

I am still busy with "estate stuff" and paperwork. If all goes well, Dad's Will should be probated by March 1st and then I can put the house up for sale. Finger's crossed as both Ray and I are already pretty tired of this weather, especially when our friends are having 26 C and sunshine in Arizona.

We finally got our new car back this week with the towing hitchplate installed. Love our new ride it is taking me a bit to get used to all of the new "gizmos". lol