Thursday, August 25, 2011

Rock Formations

We spent a few days last week at Hornby Island and a few days this week at Saturna Island.  Both of these special places have amazing sandstone rock formations.  Here are a few of the highlights.

These are the beach at Tribune Bay.  I took my camera down there early in the morning.  Most of the bay is sand but at one end there are lovely rock formations.

This next group is taken at Ford Cove on Hornby Island, where a sandstone shelf extends out into the ocean.   This is a magical place where you can walk among other-worldly rocks.

 And this last group is from East point on Saturna Island.

British Columbia's Gulf Islands are beautiful places to explore in August.  Walking among these rock formations brings me such peace and joy.  I'm linking this post to Share the Joy Thursday over at Meri's Musings.  Drop by to see what other joyful musings are there.  Joy is of course multiplied if it's shared.

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Summer weather--at last

Summer has finally arrived in Victoria. It's about six weeks late but we're just happy to see it at all.  It arrived on the 10th of August and it looks like it might stay until at least the end of the month.  Even though it just arrived there's a definite hint of fall in the air. 

I have to say that this is my most absolute favorite kind of weather--warm sun, cool breeze, softness in the air, and golden sunshine.  I love August because the colors change here from the usual heavy west coast green and gray to golden grass and blue skies and water with a counterpoint of bright and flowers. 

 A calm afternoon by the breakwater with a sailboat idling by.

Gem-like Nasturtiums in the garden.
The Canada geese are gathering at the beach.  Some of them winter here, some fly south.

Yellow grass in the field where we take the dogs for their morning romp.

And a beautiful single rose blooming along a fence.

Here's a toast to August.

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Repeating patterns in nature

My blog friend Kat who hosts "Exploring with a Camera" has inspired me to look for repeating patterns this week.  Although many of the examples posted here are from the man made world, I found this strong repeating pattern in a vigorous plant that was pushing through the earth up on Mount Washington.  I don't even know the name of it, although somebody told me it is Solomon's Seal.  Isn't it beautiful with the the ridged pattern on the leaves that narrows to a point at the top?

I recently got a new camera (Cannon G12) with lots of manual settings and I am planning to try different approaches to photography with it.  I've never been too sure about F stops and all that but I intend to learn.

Monday, August 1, 2011

Italian dinner for five

On a lovely August evening what could be better than preparing an Italian feast and sharing it with good friends in the garden?  The simplicity and sensuality of the food we ate in Italy has remained with us and we continue to eat the Italian way.  This weekend our Italy traveling companion Kath was over visiting from Vancouver and together we prepared an al fresco dinner for a few friends.  

It was an Italian inspired menu

Bruschetta with zuchinni and tomato topping served with fresh mozarella
Italian olives

Farfalle (bowtie pasta) with lemon and herbs (from my garden)

Marinated pork skewers
Garden salad with herbs and flowers
Green beans

Meringues with berries and cream
Vin Santo
Blackberry tea

What fun to cook and share a feast with dear friends at a table on the patio under the plum tree.

Here is the beautiful bouquet brought by my friend Joan. 

And here is our finale--a little glass of Vin Santo, the dessert wine that orginated in Renaissance Italy.  This toast was to travel, good food and good friends.