Welcome to my 2016 Year in Review!
I decided to split it into two posts as it has truly been a jam packed year, with so much to share/remember!
The year started off with a bit of a snow storm at the Country House. As you can see, Charlie (and his Mom) didn't let a little snow hold them back from getting outside and enjoying the Winter weather!
We had our annual Gals Weekend at The Rock in Port Elgin and decided to spend an afternoon at MacGregor Point Provincial Park to do some hiking and some skating on their outdoor skating loop through the forest! What an amazing day/weekend!
January (and actually many more months this year) reminded and illustrated to me that life has a wonderful way of showing us that the ones we love are always with us, no matter what! I had had a bracelet made last Christmas with a set of antlers engraved on it to remind me of my Dad (he was quite the outdoorsman). As Charlie and I were out for a walk down the laneway one January morning at the Country House, something peaking out of the snow along the freshly plowed side of the lane caught my eye (thankfully I also inherited my Dad's keen eye). I bent down to pick up what I found to be this shed antler.....I couldn't contain my excitement and literally ran up the lane to show Mom. If that plow had been just a few inches further over, this would've been caught in the plow and I never would have found it. Thank you Dad, for reminding us you are always with us! xo
I did quite a bit of travel early in the year, for both work and pleasure. Work-wise (for my 9-5), I had staff across the country and I was lucky enough to travel to Vancouver and Montreal to meet with them and enjoy those cities. I always have and always will love travelling and you'll see more of my travels coming up in the next few months.
In addition to travel, I also love to get outside. We have an annual Ski Bunny Weekend at Blue Mountain in Collingwood which is always a blast! This year it was a bit rainy and we didn't really hit the slopes, but it didn't stop us from wandering around the Village and downtown Collingwood. This has to be one of my favourite 'small towns' in southern Ontario. We already have our 2017 trip booked and I can't wait!
I had the pleasure to get to know even better and work with an amazing woman this year who is not only an inspiring entrepreneur, but also a great friend! My friends and family mean the world to me and I feel so incredibly blessed to have people in my life who are so generous, thoughtful and caring! You is Kind, You is Smart, You is Important! xo
And then there's this guy! My year in review wouldn't be complete without including my Charlie. He turned 11 on March 5th and even with his majestic grey beard, he's still a puppy at heart. He has brought so much love and laughter to our family....he truly is one of the most special creatures I've ever had in my life! Love you Char Bear!
Lake Huron didn't freeze over in the winter of 2015/2016 and it was a beautiful, sunshiny, but chilly day at the Goderich beach. Mom and I had a pizza picnic that day (in the car) and Charlie and I got to go for a walk on the beach. It was surreal to have sand under our feet (vs snow) in March at the lake. I love this picture at it perfectly juxtaposes summer/winter, with the lifeguard stand and the snow fence...you have to love life at the lake!
I'm a gal who really enjoys a great coffee and on my Saturday morning trips to the Guelph Farmers Market, I like to stop into one of the many great little coffee shops downtown. One of my favourites is Balzac's and it's a favourite for many reasons, in addition to it's amazing java! Their decor is spot on, the staff is super friendly and they have a small down/small business type of focus/feel. I also grind and brew their coffee at home too (thanks Anne-Marie and Mike). Cheers to another year of great coffee!
Not only does Guelph have great coffee shops, it's also a food lovers 'go to' for amazing restaurants. This is one of my favourite brunch (well really any meal, but especially brunch) spots in town, 39 Carden Street Bistro. Our bloggers group has enjoyed their scrumptiousness and has written about this establishment in the past and my friends and I enjoy their wares quite frequently. On the day pictured, a friend and I were out for brunch, planning a grand adventure.
Speaking of grand adventures......a good friend and I traveled to the City of Lights in April....talk about a trip of a lifetime! We stayed in a beautiful boutique hotel, immersed ourselves in the Parisian lifestyle and had our breath taken away on more than one occasion by this absolutely stunning city and its architecture. It truly was the grandest of grand experiences!
Back home, after 5 years and a few wobbles, it was time for a new back deck! I was lucky enough to have a wonderful crew build this stunner for me and you'll have to wait and see how it all came together for a summer of fun and entertaining!
My bestie and I went to see these guys.....my favourite band (Pearl Jam) and THE man, Mr. Eddie Vedder, with a voice unlike any other! It was an evening to remember....and we even stayed at the King Edward (a lil play on Eddie) in downtown Toronto!
May also means it's time to start gardening! I always make my own planters/urns and I needed to replace some perennials in the front garden this year too. I just love gardening...it gets me outside, away from the computer and the end result is always so rewarding.
Welcome to my Summer oasis! I'm so very happy with how this turned out and after many great days/nights back here this past summer, I can't wait for next summer and making more memories surrounded by fairy lights, under the canopy of the walnut trees.
Some very special ladies gave me this mug and if you follow my on Instagram, you will see that it is definitely one of my favs! I use the word 'holistic' A LOT (they can attest to this) and we were always going a million miles a minutes (hence the needs to hustle), so it's absolutely perfect!
Just before I switched jobs in a June, a gal pal and I squeezed in a weekend trip to St. John's Newfoundland.
We fell in love with this province....its stunning landscape, its incredible friendly people, its delicious food and beverages.....we hiked everywhere, enjoyed some of the best meals I've ever had, saw icebergs and Puffins and I can't wait to go back!
What better way to kick off the summer (and wrap up the first six months of 2016), then with great friends, amazing food, a beautiful backyard, a bonfire, laughter, LOTS of wine and a celebration of some amazing women!
Cheers to the first six months and stay tuned for another post of what the rest of the year had in store for me!