Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Canada, eh?

Our annual family vacation to Canada was a SUCCESS!! The majority of the gang went up Friday night and stayed until Monday, but due to work and the need for money, I went up on Wednesday evening and stayed until Sunday. It was the epitome of a relaxing time with a safe amount of entertainment (both at the expense of one another and purely innocent!)

A little background…this cabin is the same cabin we have been coming to since I was in grade school. It sleeps 13, but not comfortably (couches, beds that need new mattresses, etc.) I would compare it to luxurious camping! The amazing this is that it has a huge deck, is 50 feet from the lake and has its own dock! We basically live on the porch and in the water! It’s perfect in my opinion! There is also a competition each year to see who can catch the largest smallmouth bass, largemouth bass and pike. I won a few years, but NOT this year. This year I won the “Largest Sunny” prize! i.e. Nothing.

Ok, so I arrived around 10pm on Wednesday and immediate had a special drink courtesy of my family! It was a much needed beverage to end a 7 hour drive a little harassment at the border. I have never had any issues getting into Canada, but this year was an exception. Why am I the lucky person who gets to pull under pavilion #1 and proceed to the yellow counter? I am innocent as they come (I was in a sundress and looking, in my opinion, adorable). 6+ hours of driving down, less than an hour to go, dealing with rain and now this…I was irritated to say it nicely. Luckily after telling the customs guard where I was going, how long I was staying, where I am from, my age, my name, the purpose of the trip, that I didn’t have any weapons, plants, animals, etc. I was released and sent on my way. Thank God they let me into Canada!!

Thursday was a beautiful day! We did some morning fishing and I caught nada. This year was a slow fishing year. Shucks! After a few hours of dedicated fishing, we headed in for an amazing breakfast of some killer homefries, bacon, pancakes and eggs! Needless to say, I cleaned my plate and washed it down with glorious coffee!! Yum!

These are pictures of my posing for the fishies (and Ryan)!!

It didn't work.  The fishies were probably blinded by my utter whiteness! It's ok, fairness is a sign of beauty, right?!?

I was happy and giddy to be out on the water!
Reading in my (front) "No Your No Seeing Double...
(Back) It's the Sarahs!
St. Patrick's Day 2006
A good book is vital in Canada because we get up early to fish, eat breakfast and hang out for a few hours, then we go on an afternoon adventure, come back, go fishing and eat a late dinner. Any downtime, which there is plenty of, is generally spent playing cards, Frisbee or reading! I read a great book called, “When Love Walked In.” It is not a mushy romance as the title insinuates, but it was really good! I also started “Wicked” like the play, and am excited to finish that soon! So far, it is amazing!! I tried to read “Mennonite in a Little Black Dress,” “The Sex Lives of Cannibals” (supposed to be really funny) and “The Art of Racing In the Rain.” If I ever get to these books, I will let you know how they are. If you receive them as a Christmas/birthday present, I hope you have better luck than I did. They were all recommended to me, so hopefully I will get into a reading mood and knock them all out!

Our three afternoon adventures were all fun, but in very different ways! On Thursday my brother and I kayaked out to an island in the middle of the lake while my mom and other brother swam near us. It was about a half of a mile in length, but with the waves from boats and nasty lake weed, it was more challenging that swimming in a pool. Once we got to the island, my brother and I switched places with my mom and brother. Keep in mind that I can honestly say that I have not spent more than a few hours in a pool/lake/ocean/body of water all summer, but I swam the half mile like a stud! It was actually easy! I think I should take up swimming because my body felt amazing the next day!! (Sorry no photos, but apparently since I was in my tan and cream bikini, I looked like I was skinny dipping!! That is according to my mom!)

Friday’s afternoon adventure was an hour boast trip to the Locks, cliff jumping and my 15” largemouth bass catch!! The Locks are still hand pumped (I am sure there are machines inside, but everything appears to be traditional and old fashioned). We watched a few boats start at the top lock and move their way down to the next lake! It was pretty interesting! Here are some photos from that experience.

Alphabet Soup!  That's what the water scum reminded us of at least!

Top view of the locks

The lower lock being filled so that its water level is even with the lock above it (where the boats are)

The water is getting higher...
Here come the boats!!

After the locks, we drove the boat over to the rock jumping cliff! It is a 30+ foot rock cliff with a few lower points that we can jump off of! Tom, Sam and Mike were the first three to jump off! I was still on the boat taking photos. I quickly swam out to the cliff, climbed up and was about to jump when I realized that Bonnie still hadn’t jumped… I gave her the option to either jump immediately, or let me go first. There was no way I was standing 30+ feet above the water and looking down for more than a second. She told me to jump, so I did!! I landed flat footed. Silly me. You concentrate on jumping and not tripping while you run and you completely forget about any jumping technique…if there is such a thing! After me, Bonnie and my mom jumped off the 15 foot rock and then we heard ”Ahhhhh” and we saw my dad running off the highest point! His forearm flopped! He jumped and his arms were out at 90 degree angles to his sides and we heard them hit! He’s a stud! I honestly don’t know any other 60 year old fathers who would do half the things my father does! I can only hope that I am as energetic and outgoing as he is for my children and grandchildren! That will be a topic for another blog though! We all jumped off once and then swam around and tried to touch the bottom of the lake. The water was so nice, so we just goofed around!

Once we were all cooled off, we drifted along some cliffs and went fishing and that is when my dad caught my hair with his hook and worm!! Here’s proof.

After the hook and worm was safely removed, I caught my 15” largemouth bass!!! It was the only real fish that I caught and I was oh so proud! I wish I could show you a picture, but my little sister took it and it’s all stomach (small person’s view of me…eek!) It has officially been added to my list of top 10 worst photos of me! I will not be sharing it with you…sorry.
After a few other people caught fish, we headed home and got ready to go night fishing. It was an uneventful evening. The next morning was also uneventful. That is basically the theme of the rest of the trip in regards to fishing. Sadly.

The next eventful moment was Saturday afternoon when we took the boat out with the tube attached to the back! My mom was first, then Bonnie and I went together because we didn’t want her falling off and hanging out in the lake by herself until we pull back around to her. I was scared to death that she was going to head-butt me and I was going to lose some teeth. Luckily, she went flying off one way and I went off the other way, but right near each other! I went out for another ride by myself and it was really fun! I was airborne a lot and held on for death life!!  With each jolt, I had to make the decision to hold on with all my might of let the whipping get the best of me and most likely skip across the water.  I held on!  The absolute best tuber in my family is Tom!  He was like Evil Knievel on that thing!  There were times when he was virtually upside down and he would flip it back in midair!  Craziness!  It was soooo entertaining to watch!  I wish I would have recorded it.  Shucks!

Dad doing his thing!
(Sorry, I don't have many photos on my camera)

Other than that, we read a lot and experienced some beautiful weather and skies! Enjoy!!

View from the Cabin!

Monday, August 9, 2010

Recipe: Betty's Guac...Mmm Mmm Good!

My love for guacamole started when I moved to San Diego to be with Ryan!  Growing up, my family always had taco nights, but guacamole was never part of that.  I recently found out that is absence was because my family isn't too fond of avocados.  To be honest, they consider them slimy.  Either way, I love guacamole and have been experimenting with it for about a year now.  To date, the recipe below is my most successful creation (according to my female coworkers, and believe me, they know their food)!

4 Avocados (soft to the touch)
½ Medium Red Onion
1 Can of Chipotle corn, Mexi corn or Fiesta corn (Chipotle is my favorite)
1 Medium Tomato
1 Clove of Garlic
1 tsp +/- Salt
1 tsp +/- Pepper
Place avocados in refrigerator
Chop the onion in little cubes
De-seed tomato and chip into little cubes
Rinse the corn
Crush the garlic
Add Salt and pepper to taste
Mix above ingredients together and place in refrigerator
Slice/mash avocados into the mixture and serve chilled

Serve with chips, tacos, etc.

Enjoy and let me know what you think!