This blog is about our travels in our solar powered "Airstream" and living off grid, in our passive solar home, near Bancroft, Ontario, Canada.

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Monday, 26 October 2015


Today Paul and Connie came to help Mary work in the bush. Seems to me the closer winter gets the further back into our property we retreat.

Mary gave the orders and we all did what we could. The day went well and everyone enjoyed the sunshine and warm temperature. Paul couldn't have picked a better day to come up.

Even Freckles enjoyed her time outside. She was exhausted by late afternoon and found a sunny spot where the soil was warm for a doggy nap. She kept one ear erect always checking that Paul didn't disappeared.
Time to put away the shovels and head back to the house.
But first we had to pick those pesky burrs off our clothing; can they ever stick. 
It was a great day and now we have more land cleared and raked, ready for us to snowshoe. It will be so much easier this year with new trails cut and marked.

Thanks for all your help Connie and Paul. Come back in January and enjoy our trails.

Thursday, 22 October 2015


Last week Mary got a phone requesting a special halloween costume.

Mary had the material and she was soon busy cutting  and fitting the different fabrics  together.

It didn't take long for the costume to start taking shape.

Once done it was boxed and put in the mail.

Now one little grandson is ready for Halloween. He was so happy to get it he had to call Oma and thank her. He is a treasure.

Tuesday, 20 October 2015


Even a short visit is good. We had my sister and brother-in-law here last night and it was great to see them.

Don worked on connecting my Apple TV box to the internet but it wouldn't work as expected. It's another excuse to come back for a longer visit before the snow arrives.

While we worked on the Apple Box, Mary and Carol discussed recipes and herbs. We are trying to share information and eat healthier these days. Exercise is also important so it's time to post this blog and get out for a walk. It's a beautiful sunny morning here.

Sunday, 18 October 2015


Our fall colours are about 50% done. It had been a glorious show and every lake is wrapped in colour, but this will soon be over.

Love the morning light streaming through the trees. It is typical of what we see when we first get up.

Our blue skies have given way to clouds and cooler temperatures. This morning it was -8*C and we have a fire going as I type.

Safe travels everyone and thanks for stopping by.

I'm having trouble changing the header picture as my choices don't come up when I click on the old picture. If you know how to correct this problem let me know.

Wednesday, 14 October 2015


The rains have arrived and unfortunately the leaves are falling as well. I love the fall, with all its colours, cool evenings, warm days and no bugs. It really is the best time to be here.

Mary is off to a quilter's weekend and I will keep the chickens fed and clear more brush from our trails. We are looking forward to doing more snowshoeing this winter.

Sean had a biking accident last weekend, that's not unusual for Sean. This time along with the usual road rash he tore a muscle in his leg. This is very painful and he wears a strap on leg brace to keep the muscle still. No more rides for a while.

Time for breakfast and a trip to town.

Safe travels Bob.

Tuesday, 13 October 2015


We eat a lot of garlic and Mary prefers the ones she digs from her garden. Garlic is planted in the fall but first the bulbs must be separated and cleaned. It's an easy process as you can see here.

These were planted 6 inches deep and 6 inches apart. Mary put in 150 cloves and we are hoping for a bumper crop next year.

While Mary worked in the garden I worked on the solar panels.

It is time to adjust their tilt for the proper tracking of the winter sun. This will improve the amps going into out batteries as the angle the sun strikes the panels affects the amperage flow.

I use a ladder so I can reach and remove the bolts but I'm thinking maybe a platform would be safer. I think I'll use it in the spring.

We also got some firewood moved up onto the porch. We go through 5 of these crates each winter and having the wood just outside the front door makes it very handy.

This year I was able to cover each crate with tin I got from Marvin. It should keep the wood dry and free of ice and snow as the months pass.

Looks like indoor jobs are on the agenda today as it is pouring rain at the moment.

Monday, 12 October 2015


This is the season to be outside. Yesterday we decided to walk our snowshoe trails and see what repair work needs to be done.
Mary made sure we stayed on the trail. Although we used red tape to mark the trees it is easy to take a wrong turn if we don't concentrate on the trail.

We have several trails that cross each other. Our neighbours helped to build them and we use both properties which gives us over a mile of snowshoeing without having to cross any roads.

Time to sit on the deck and enjoy the colours. Today we will plant garlic and bring the crates of firewood up on the deck. Winter is coming and we want to be ready. We often have a fire in the evening or morning to take the chill out of the house.

Thanks for stopping by and safe travels Bob.

Sunday, 11 October 2015


Our plan was to get up early and be home before twelve yesterday but that didn't happen. Our truck wouldn't start but CAA came to the rescue and we were on the road by 11:30. 

Traffic was light and the colours were at their best.

Followed this camper for a while. He seemed to have everything tied down securely.

It didn't matter what road we were on the colours were there to enjoy.

I think our own road was the best.

Although we enjoy getting away it's always so good to come back home.

Safe travels everyone and enjoy the colours.

Saturday, 10 October 2015


Went back to the apple orchard for more spartan apples yesterday. They are firm, crisp and delicious so Mary wanted to take some home.

This machine sorts the apples and those that fall through the holes drop into the bin below and are used for apple cider. Can you see the apples falling into the bin? Apparently only picked apples can be used for apple cider. The ones are the ground become deer apples.
Lots of varieties for sale. What surprised me were the workers, everyone looked old enough to be retired. 
Next stop was the Blackbird cafe in Burnstown for lunch. Every table was occupied so that should tell you something about the quality of the food; lunch was delicious.

We stopped at the local microbrewery here in Calabogie but they were sold out. They've only be in business for eight weeks and can't keep up to the demand. Every business should be that successful.

The week has flown and in a few hours we will be home. Mary has some new projects to make and we've both enjoyed the chance to explore a new area of our province.

Safe travels everyone.

Friday, 9 October 2015


Three quilt shops were on yesterday's agenda, the first being in Carlton Place.

While Mary shopped I wandered along Main Street, taking pictures and enjoying the warm autumn sun. This is the old post office typical of many built back in the late 1800 throughout Ontario.

 Then it was on to Perth, a town many consider the prettiest in Ontario. It was settled in 1816 by soldiers from Ireland, Scotland, Germany, Poland after the war of 1812.

These old buildings were built by stonemasons who settled here, from Ireland. 

Those that were built along the Tay River are now restaurants with busy patios. Having lunch beside a river is indeed a perfect tonic after a busy morning at the office.

Perth is also home to Big Ben the world famous jumper ridden by Ian Miller in two olympics and countless jumping competitions. This life size statue graces the park in downtown Perth.

Here is another example of the beautiful stone buildings found here. These townhouses have their balcony hanging over the Tay River just across the park from the picture above. Wonder what they look like inside?

It was the type of day you don't want to end, perfect weather, setting, lots of quilt shops to explore and places to photograph. We both came home tired but happy.

Thursday, 8 October 2015


Wednesday after lunch we headed out to find the Eagle's Nest Trail. The colours are at their best and the day was warm and dry.

Part of the trail crossed an old corduroy road. Logs were laid side by side to keep the wagons from sinking into the mud. It reminded the drivers of corduroy fabric, thus the name.

The sugar maples were a beautiful golden against the blue sky.

The lookout point gave us a breathtaking panoramic view of the valley below. 

Time to sit and enjoy the view along with a snack and water. It was so peaceful from this perch, it truly was a bird's eye view. If we just had wings we could have soared all day.

How many others have done the same for an afternoon? This was a sacred site to our native people and for generations they would come and sit and reflect on life. I can see why.

Today we are off to Perth, the birthplace of my sister and first home for my parents. 

Happy Anniversary Carol and Don, I can see why you chose this season to get married, it is a beautiful time to travel.