Sugar shack

Snowshoeing

Snowshoeing in Bois Beckett, right in the city of Sherbrooke.

Fresh snow to shake off trees.

Morgane is much faster on snowshoes than two winters ago!

Morgane pretending snowshoeing is harder than it is.

Advanced snowshoeing class.

Bye Bye Dear Carmanah

A grass nap. Nose in tail.

I am sad to tell you that a few weeks ago, Carmanah passed away. I am happy to say that she had a long and happy life and was feeling quite good up until the last day when she was unable to get up or walk. She lived to be fourteen and a half. Oddly enough, her last remaining sibling, a brother in Prince George, BC, died the very same day.

We miss her, but do not forget her.

Carmanah enjoying the winter sunshine this time last year in Austin, Texas.

Creative Kid

Morgane just keeps making incredible things. She made this fairy house for her friend’s birthday.

Fairy house

The mother fairy

Fairies with Christmas toys

Climbing Mont Orford

Last week we did a great hike up Mont Orford, the highest mountain in our immediate area and the local ski hill. We had the pleasure of bringing two of Morgane’s friends from school and all three girls were troopers. They asked if they would get big muscles and be able the hike even bigger mountains soon.

Three hikers

mountain top trees

Looking out at the Eastern Townships

The beautiful mountains and lakes in the nearby United States.

First Signs of Winter at Orford Park, Quebec

We had a great hike today in Orford Park. We even got to see some wildlife!

Wait for them and they will come.

More snacking

Little bird coming for a snack

Watching the bird on her hand

Running mink

L'etang des cerises, Cherry Pond

Is it a beaver dam? There's a dusting of snow over the new ice.

Interesting ice by the water

River angle

nature and bridge

Beautiful girl in nature

Needless to say, we are enjoying our corner of the world. We love all the seasons and Morgane is enjoying crunching all the fresh ice. We threw rocks on ice too thick to break and it made a funny sound, like a bird call. Winter is so interesting.

Okay, so we occasionally dream of San Diego and other southern locations.

I will have to post again to tell you about the wonderful food available here and Morgane’s wonderful school.

Exploring Stanstead and Coaticook

The Eastern Townships in June.

On Sunday, we hopped in the car and went to explore the countryside, south of here near the border. It only takes half an hour on the big road to get to Stanstead, but we enjoyed the back roads. Morgane spotted a lot of « gangs of cows. »

I think it's Spring Hill Cemetery.

We stopped at a very old cemetery and imagined the lives of the folks who died in the 1850′s.

Morgane and Ghis on the bridge between the two customs stations.

In Stanstead, or actually in Rock Island, we walked onto the bridge in between the American and Canadian border crossings and had a great view over the Tomifobia River. The Canadian guard wanted to talk to us before letting us back into Canada, but it wasn’t much hassle.

Looking over the bridge.

Amazingly, the border cuts right through the town and sometimes people get in trouble for crossing the border and it’s only because they didn’t even notice it. We found a spot like this where detour signs blocked cars from passing. But we could have easily walked across to where we saw American flags hanging off the fronts of houses.

These little blockades mark the border.

This building is along the border. I think it might even be in both countries at the same time.

A peek at a pretty church.

After that, we took more backroads, heading northeast, to Coaticook. All the farms in the region seem to be relatively small, which is what makes it all so attractive. That and the rolling hills.

Can any southerners guess what this is?

In Coaticook, we paid to walk across the gorge on the suspension bridge and after that, we walked the trails for an hour or so until we were hot and sweaty. We got to go inside a cool, drippy cave and climb up to get a view from a tower with 120 steps according to Morgane.

Looking up at the bridge over the gorge.

Exiting the cave.

The tower.

The view of the bridge from the tower.

On the way out of town, we saw a big crowd in front of the ice cream factory, so we stopped to get some, too.

Morgane loved the merry-go-round in Stanstead. It's hard to find them anymore.

In the Garden

Flowers on the tree.

Our garden is growing tall and green. Morgane and I enjoying puttering in it: I weed and she waters. Soon we’ll have lettuce to pick and later on, strawberries.

Bleeding hearts look like little chickens.

Swiss Chard - anybody got a recipe?

May Day

She just finished making her crown.

Morgane and I attended the May Day celebrations at the Waldorf School, Les Enfants de la Terre. It was great fun. The kids could buy tickets and take part in different activities like fishing for shells and digging for special stones in the sandbox. They also had a May pole, but we missed the dancing.

The girls wanted to dig for treasures forever!

Our new friends, Marie-Josée and her daughter Jasmine, brought us there. Jasmine is bilingual, like Morgane, and has travelled a lot. The girls get along really well.

The first thing the girls wanted to do was make flower crowns. The first thing I wanted to do was buy all the wooden toys and crafts for sale. The Waldorf philosophy has one thing absolutely right – it’s fun to make stuff! It turns out that lots of people in the area make Waldorf-type toys: silks and dolls and little felted vegetables.

The Waldorf-y girls.

Organic lunches were for sale as well as fresh homemade ice cream and baked goods. Various groups of adults and children performed on the violin and other stringed instruments. By the time we left, we were tired from all the fun, but Morgane made sure to ask if we could come again next year. I said yes.

Someone turned my girl into a cat!

Gardening and Lennoxville

Watering the garden

Morgane and I went to the nursery and gathered some seeds and plants for the garden. We planted tomatoes, peppers, cucumbers, lettuce and strawberries. She also planted her very own flower garden.

I bought some white pajamas and Morgane did an amazing job of decorating mine with the special pastels I bought. I ironed it and the picture is supposed to stay for good.

My beautiful pjs.

Sunday my good friend, Guylaine, came to visit. We took out the kayaks and she and Ghis and Morgane went for a paddle. I drove and met them at the beach where Morgane and I then enjoyed wading in the cool water.

Guylaine and I went to Lennoxville for English-style tea including scones with jam and cream. Then we walked around the campus of Bishop’s University where she did her degree.

Guylaine in the quad at Bishop's.