Since I’ve last posted to the blog we’ve had another busy week. I don’t really know where the time goes, but I sure can’t say that we’re bored at all.
Since last week, we’ve had another visit from our son Jason, who decided to try and salvage some of the summer by heading to the Okanagan, where it’s always sunny and bright…..or usually, unless it’s the BC Day long weekend. We ended up having some showers over the weekend, but really can’t complain too much as we never had to bring out an umbrella or wear a jacket. The temperatures hovered around the high 20’s, and even hit the low 30’s in the late afternoon.That’s much warmer than it’s been in Calgary, where Jason was seeing his breath in the cold morning air a couple of days ago. For those of you following this from south of the border, 30’s is pretty good, and is only a few degrees cooler than Arizona this time of year. As is becoming usual when Jason wants to get away for a while he got a last minute order for 15 crates which he had to build late into the night on Thursday and deliver in the middle of the night before he could get away on Friday. It seems that his customers must know when he wants some time off, and get together a plan to load him up with work at the last minute.
Along with Jason there seemed to appear about 150,000 of his closest friends from Alberta. The roads were very busy especially on Thursday and Friday evenings when all the tourists seemed to arrive at once, but other than those periods, the roads and the attractions were pretty accessible during the weekend.
One of the reasons Jason wanted to come is that he really likes exploring the Okanagan Wineries, and so we spent almost the whole day on Saturday driving around the Naramata Bench which is on the other side of Lake Okanagan. It’s a spectacularly pretty area, and well suited to growing grapes with it’s great exposure to the afternoon sunshine. There must be more than 20 wineries in the area, and we stopped at about 12 of them over the course of the day. These locations are mostly small individual operators with no big industrial style producing plants in the area. It’s a great experience when you can talk to the people who either grow the grapes or produce the wine during your visit, and in some cases you’re talking to both people at the same time. Some of these wineries also have restaurants with first rate chefs to tantalize your taste buds for lunch or dinner on beautiful decks overlooking the vineyards and lake. We had a wonderful lunch at Lake Breeze Winery and some lovely appetizers at Hillside Winery. They were absolutely fabulous!
Many of the wineries have artwork or sculpture to accent their tasting areas, and while some were kinda strange, many were very impressive.
One other thing he wanted to do was to check out how his Dad’s golf lessons were coming along, so we played hooky from Church on Sunday and checked out the course at Mission Creek. This is the same course I played last week, and my scores keep going down which is a good thing. I shot an 86, not that great on a par 61 course, but better than last weeks 90 something. I ended up losing the round to Jason by 5 strokes, 4 of which I lost on the last hole when he picked up his lone birdie, and I hacked my way to a triple bogie. Maybe next time I’ll beat him.
Since the floods in Calgary earlier this summer life has been a challenge for those people living in the flood area. Jason’s building only has one of the two elevators in operation which makes things very difficult when someone is moving in or out, and he’s had to climb the 25 flights of stairs to and from his condo an un-countable number of times. The parking garage is still not available to residents, and there is absolutely no parking available on the streets most days, as most of the condo buildings in the area are in the same situation. When he got back to Calgary on Monday night, he had to stop in at his condo to change before he headed off to work as he received some orders for crates while he was here on the weekend. He managed to find a parking spot that was only slightly longer than his Nissan, and was so proud of himself that he put a picture on his Facebook page. Parallel parked like a champ.
I’m just happy he didn’t have to park there very long, as I could see the fella in front bumping him a few times before going on his way.
After the weekend we decided to process some of our raspberries which we’ve been picking and freezing over the past few weeks. We’ve managed to collect 3 large bags of the berries just like this one.
This bag produced 9 jars of jam, and a full tray of berry juice that we set aside for future smoothies. And rest assured Debbie, we’ll be bringing some of our bounty to Arizona this winter, and there might just be a jar of jam with your name on it.
With two more bags of raspberries in the freezer, at least one or two bags of Blackberries on the way, a full tree of peaches almost ready and two trees of apples ripening, I think we may be in this far over our heads. Oh, I almost forgot…the pears!