Lletty's Blog

Croeso! Welcome to Lletty Cottage a lovely five star holiday cottage for two in Carmarthenshire

September 10 Myddfai Walk and Open Doors September 10, 2017

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Walking Well Friday again and the rain held off…just! We’ve had very  watery weather  with blasts of sunshine in between so having a day that looked drier than previous ones the walk was on!

We set off through the village  and spotted some fascinating  ‘begging hands’ outside one of the cottages.

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Further on  were beautiful views over the Beacons.

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Accompanying the walk was Tilly, a black and white collie  dog and she was looking after Philip, our leader. She was very intelligent and took great pride in teaching us all how to pick up sticks and throw them  and  also how to wait on the side of the road listening and looking for traffic.

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When we’d crossed the road safely there was still lots of interest to be found in the hedges.

There was evidence of the mighty rainfall we’ve had as the gulleys were blocked with the early autumn leaves and Pam made a gallant effort clearing all the drains as we went along the road.

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It was a good job that Tilly had given us all  some  road safety tips as it was put to great use!

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Another hint from Tilly was to pick up the  proffered stick and throw it.

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Our walk took us through the  estate of Prince Charles but again he wasn’t home.

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Not wishing to be repetitive but Tilly was insistent that we really did need to concentrate and learn how to pick up those sticks!

Continuing our walk through the estate we saw geese getting ready for Christmas  (11 geese a laying!), trees standing on  guard , postman delivering, autumn colours, Myddfai church, a blue cottage and wild flowers… and the coffee and courgette and lime cake from the Visitor Centre just made for a perfect walk!

 

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The upstairs in Aberglasney  mansion is not usually open to the public but today being Open Doors Day tours were being taken by the Head Gardener/Director Joseph and I was helping…well opening and closing doors!! The event is on next weekend too  so anyone who books and pays normal entrance fees  can go on a tour and see all the magic of upstairs! A few photos to whet your appetite.

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Later in the day I went to a party in a beautiful house with a garden that went right down to the River Towy. This fisherman had all the gear and was striding out with every intention of catching  his supper!

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Arriving home in the rain  I was welcomed by a half rainbow…the other end was in my kitchen…my pot of gold…Jim was making  me a cup of coffee!

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August 25 Walk Around Talley August 25, 2017

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The rain had stopped, the sun was peeping out so all set for a walk with Walking Well. Jane,my pal and I, set off in our car along the country lanes to Talley. These lanes can be a bit of a nightmare  as they are very narrow without  many passing places  but thankfully the only car we met was Paul, in his Post Office van delivering mail. He’s such a gentleman he reversed  back down a hill so we could squeeze past!

Not long after (20 minutes!) we arrived outside Talley church and abbey. The abbey had been home to  monks in the 12th century and the lakes were their fishponds.  The church had been built centuries later using stones from the derelict abbey.

http://www.castlewales.com/talley.html

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After meeting everyone else we set off following Philip, our leader!

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The road swept gradually upwards  as Philip had promised us in his mail…’It’s about a two and a half mile walk on tracks and woodland paths. There are no stiles. There is a steady walk uphill on graded tracks and then a gentle downhill section on a footpath. Stunning views and plenty of exercise.’

We’ll see if he’s correct at the end of the walk!!

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We did pass some lovely properties which had lovely views over the valley below.

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DSC02941.jpgWe walked  through some quite dense undergrowth and then followed what Philip called ‘a steady walk uphill’! Steps can be killers on the legs! But we were promised beautiful views and the climb was certainly worth it.

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Whichever way one looked the view was wonderful. One way in the distance were the Cambrian Mountains and the other way the Carmarthen Fans…just beautiful.

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DSC02976 (1).jpgDSC02985.jpgDSC02978.jpgMany interesting plants, mosses and liverworts were growing on the sides of the paths.DSC02983.jpgStanding like soldiers the conifers lined up by side by side.

DSC02987.jpgThe trig point was at the top of this hill…just a step too far today…but next time!

DSC02991.jpgAfter admiring the view we started off down another hill back to the car park. The buddleia were still in flower and attracting butterflies- it’s a mystery to me why my well looked after buddleia  in the garden has died when these ‘wild’ ones are flourishing!

I think Philip described his walk very well  but I might have used  a different adjective instead of ‘steady’!

Back home  I found that the sun had partly dried out the hay meadow and the kind farmer was giving  the grass a cut!

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He said he’d be back tomorrow to turn the grass twice and hopefully he’ll bale it on Sunday before the rain returns! It’s all go!

 

August 24 Show Time and Showing Off! August 24, 2017

 

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Shows everywhere, in every village and town, at this time of the year- a great meeting place  for everyone. Lots to  look at and enjoy in our local show in Llansadwrn. First there are  the  in hand horse and pony classes, followed swiftly by the sheep classes, dog show, and finally the gymkhana and jumping. Alongside all this activity there’s  the agricultural section (including best bale of hay, best discarded horn, tallest sunflower, tallest nettle  and longest fern) I must remember to enter the tallest nettle next year as there are plenty in my garden!

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The horticultural, art  and craft, domestic produce, handicrafts , photographic  and children’s sections are held in the marquee which is a hive of activity before 11am when all entries have to be in place.  People carrying enormous baskets of finely grown vegetables vie with others who have  one   hand carrying a plate with tasty looking cakes and the other hand carrying a dainty flower arrangement – the hustle and bustle is all delightful.

Champion dog

11am arrives and peace descends as  the flaps to the marque are closed and all the entries await all  the judges decisions.

 

DSC02785.jpg                                             Showing off my winning herbs!

Continuing on the theme of showing off- I was pleased that my photos did well too!

Off to another show in Bristol this time for the Model Engineer’s Show!

First crossing the beautiful Severn Bridge  and then onwards to Thornbury for the exhibition.

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Amazing models of all things to enjoy  and wonder at. My grandfather used to own a  traction engine which powered  his fairground bioscope show that travelled up and down the country in the early 1900’s. He had a model made of the traction engine  and it was similar to this one…..memories!

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                                       My favourite- I could watch it going round all day! 

Completing the trio of shows visited in the last week  was a drive out to Waunifor in Ceredigion, about an hour away, for their end of summer Art exhibition. This year marks their 10th anniversary.

Thirty- eight local artists  display their recent work in  a lovely building, the Cedar Hall.

David Small, Waunifor’s resident ceramic artist  had some lovely work on display.

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It was wonderful to walk around the exhibition, with a good friend, and enjoy the many styles and techniques  of the artists who had created such an amazing exhibition. This was quickly followed by a coffee and cake before the drive home.

Looking forward to another show/exhibition which opens  soon at Llangathen Hall!

 

August 15 Fat Baby, Veg and Artists Visiting August 15, 2017

Filed under: Uncategorized — lletty @ 4:44 pm

 

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My Fat Baby is delicious! I have so many Fat Babies to eat I’m not sure what to do with them all! It all started off at art class when chat turns to other things besides paint, paper, vanishing points etc! Wendy (www.wendypowell-jones.me.uk) our tutor told us about some seeds she was planting  that she had bought from http://www.realseeds.co.uk, Of course, that got me looking up the site and buying some Fat Baby seeds, other ACHOCHA seeds, bean seeds and others. The achocha seeds are very easy to grow but be warned they spread everywhere. They taste like green peppers when fried but so much easier to grow!

 

Whilst out in the veg patch and while it wasn’t raining I picked some veg and looked at the few plants that the rabbits, snails and slugs have left! No wonder our hedgehog is getting quite fat with all the slugs he is eating! IMG_8815.jpg

 

 

The land cress is doing well which is a good thing as I eat loads!

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A quick look around the back garden which is still looking quite colourful despite the rain.

 

Thankfully, there are lots of bees and other stripey creatures flying round.

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I do love a nasturtium as do the cabbage white butterflies but share and share alike!

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Plants in pots take a lot of watering when it’s dry but hey…hardly any work this year…there are benefits to having a lot of rain! IMG_8875.jpg

During the summer the house plants are given a bit of fresh air and they are loving it.IMG_8884.jpg

This house plant has positively thrived and grown huge and flowered…who’d have guessed that!

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Through the winter this lily lives in the Ty Bach ( small room…downstairs loo!) but loves the summer light!

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I love my garden and it’s always a pleasure to share it with others. Some of the artists in the art group that I go to   (Gelli Aur Painters on Facebook) came for lunch the other day and the sun shone all day! A magic day with friends!

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No Walking Well news this post…it was too wet for me! Catch up next time when hopefully it won’t be raining so hard!

 

 

 

July 31st Wet Walk and Even Wetter Garden! July 31, 2017

Filed under: Uncategorized — lletty @ 4:17 pm

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DSC02493.jpgI totally agree with the author of another blog that I follow that autumn seems to have arrived before summer! Just take today for example, rain until coffee time this morning, bright sunshine until lunchtime, rain until teatime  and now glorious sunshine, hopefully which will last until bedtime!

These bursts of bright light are good  for the soul and the garden, however, the warm, damp weather  brings out the best in weeds and leads to overgrown borders!

 

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Some of the plants are racing each other to reach even higher into the sky, probably trying to get away from all the water at their feet!

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The rain has given me time to ‘renovate’ one of our garden tables. Brilliant using the  sander but I couldn’t hold my coffee cup afterwards as  my arm took ages to stop shaking!!

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Not only did I sand the table but oiled the chapel pew too. I love this ‘garden room’ just to sit, relax and watch  the rain pouring down! Jim admires my handiwork …from a distance!

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Facing the other way  gives a pleasant view over the Pond Field and all the newly shorn sheep, who are steadily eating their way through all the grass.

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Rufus, of course, had to check all my work!

DSC02416.jpgOur Walking Well Walk was in Dinefwr where Philip had planned a ‘short’ walk around the estate. It  turned out to be a very refreshing, enjoyable walk even though as can be seen it was  raining hard for most of the way.

We  crossed over Llandeilo bridge and headed over the meadow before passing in front of Llandyfeisant church which hides itself in the shelter of Dinefwr Woods.

 

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One of our walkers looked to be a perfect shepherd!

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We moved swiftly passed some nosy onlookers!

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The castle looked  down on us as we completed the  half way point of the walk

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Doors were appearing in all sorts of unusual places and one wonders what is behind them!

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The blackberries looked as wet as we felt!

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Everything was running for shelter from the rain!

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Even though it was wet and dismal the beauty of Dinefwr shone through.

Back home after a delicious piece of raspberry cake topped with white chocolate  and a  cappuccino at The Works Llandeilo ,  the garden  looked refreshed   and brightening up for the burst of sunshine that would arrive any minute!

The mice had left a few vegetables for our dinner!

Sacrilege indeed…I have cut the lower arms off our monkey puzzle tree. Every time I have walked near it…I’m sure it lunges out at me….I have been scratched and torn by its sharp needle spines. They should come with a health warning! I do hope it won’t despise me  and attack  again!

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Another tree that just waits for me  to walk near it  so I can be spiked  but I planted it there so it’s my fault!

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Best bit of all this rain is staying inside and completing that Christmas jigsaw with our grandson!  Happy Summer Holidays…but take an umbrella!

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Book now for your October break in Lletty Cottage  www.llettycottage.com …it will be sunny and dry then!

 

 

July 16th Catching Up! July 16, 2017

Filed under: Uncategorized — lletty @ 8:26 pm

http://www.llettycottage.co.uk

It’s three weeks since our return from  holiday and we have had more lovely visitors  staying in Lletty Cottage.

We’ve also had a number of visitors to the house: loss adjustors, builders, decorators, cleaner uppers! We had a leak in the bathroom plumbing whilst we were away and this resulted, amongst other things, that  the dining room ceiling landed on the dining room floor…and all that entails! However, we are insured with the NFU and they have been wonderful and sorted  everything out promptly for us. The builders and decorators have been amazing too  and the rooms  are now getting better than they were previously!!

This hasn’t stopped any of my other getting out and about days!

A cream tea  with live entertainment ( two guitarists playing songs that I knew words to!)   was   organised by the Llangadog WI during the week  and was enjoyed  by many,  on one of the only sunny days!

DSC02283.jpgLlangadog also had a garden competition running. Mick Sheridan, the upholsterer,  had a very unusual  and brilliant garden design.

DSC02294.jpg A visit to one of my favourite castles was the next away day! Carreg Cennen Castle is magnificent (30 minutes drive from the cottage) even on another rainy, cold day! My friend’s daughter is getting married there later in the year so it was a good chance for her to have a recce  and me to be nosy!

The setting is spectacular  with the castle set on high  and surrounded by stunning countryside.  Starting off we had  a coffee first and a look at the rare breeds Longhorned cattle in the field below .

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We even spotted those who were playing hide and seek!

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The wedding ceremony takes place in a converted barn with the view of the castle framed in the window above the table where the bride and groom sit. It’s just perfect!

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Outside a path leads up passed the farmhouse to the castle where wedding photos may be taken. It must be wonderful to get married in such an amazing place.

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The Walking Well Walk last week was led by Philip, who had planned a figure of eight walk around the countryside of Cwmifor, just 20 minutes drive away.

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The walk was very pleasant walking through fields with sheep  and not so pleasant when there were large cows and calves in the fields. No one gets worried about this….only me!

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The most remarkable aspect of the walk was noting the many new gates that had  replaced old and worn stiles. Hope this refurbishment of stiles gets done all through the county! Fingers crossed!!

A selection of fine new gates:

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The walk also took us through a farmyard, where we were  greeted  by a very friendly dog.

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Many of the he fields were covered in thistles, the only plant , it seems, that the sheep don’t like! They’ll be nibbling away soon at all the hazelnuts that are growing in the hedgerows!

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One tree they won’t be sampling is this one ‘growing’ in a garden in the village, complete with woodpecker.

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Back home, the lawn has now turned into a meadow  and cutting a path through it is a way of preserving the many wild flowers that are growing. ( It’s actually a way out for me of cutting the grass- it all catches up with me later when I have to cut it all down in the autumn…but it does look lovely now!)

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The bog garden too is now rather overgrown. It just loves this wet and warm weather!

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The rust on the hollyhock leaves  always happens, it’s just not the rain!

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Tip of the week from Philip:

Always hold on tightly to the electric fence hook when you unhook it to let walkers through  as it’s elastic  and the result could be nasty!

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Our walks are really ‘exciting’ ….you always learn something!

 

June 30 Back Home June 29, 2017

Filed under: Uncategorized — lletty @ 10:10 pm

This post doesn’t  tell you anything about Lletty Cottage except the owners are now very relaxed and happy after their holiday away and pleased to be back ready to welcome all visitors here. 

http://www.llettycottage.co.uk

 

We have returned! Actually you might not have known that we were going away. Well, I did try to tell everyone that this holiday was going to be a holiday of a lifetime…and it was! It was my FIRST EVER flight in an aeroplane  and we were flying to British Columbia to visit our son and his family. The twins are now 3 years old  and we couldn’t wait any longer  to see them.

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No denying I was pretty worried about the flight as  I hate  being in small spaces  and I had numerous pills from the doctor in case it all became too much but  I didn’t need them  and after 9 and a half hours of flying we were there!  How wonderful to be met with bouquets of flowers and lots of hugs and tears mingled together!

I know how boring  looking at other peoples holiday photos are …so zip to the end now as I’m about to do  a look at my 989 photos….I promise they are not all here! These are just a flavour of what we did on our month away.

The first couple of days we settled into Canadian life and visited a few stores, went to the beach  and enjoyed some lovely walks.

 

 

It was great to see how the family are developing their garden  and creating a beautiful home for them all.  FaceTime is fantastic but seeing the place in reality is so much better.

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In their back garden they were wondering where all their cherries

were disappearing to!

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We don’t get many shops like this in Llansadwrn!

IMG_7753.jpgA short car journey from home brought us to some lovely and interesting places – all beautifully tidy, clean and vibrant.

IMG_7830.jpgA visit to Whistler was next on our busy agenda. We drove passed a bear in a car park but didn’t stop to say hello!

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On the way we stopped for a short paddle in a lake

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Our apartment matched the stunning scenery- it was all superb.

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Now that’s some robin!

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On our return to Vancouver we called into Stanley Park and enjoyed the views across the bay.

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We enjoyed the ferry  crossing to Vancouver Island as there was a play area for the children and lots of coffee outlets and sitting  areas to sit and look – there were no sightings of whales though.

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Our first port of call was the Butchart Gardens, where we were welcomed  by the Welsh flag fluttering in the wind! We have had a Butchart Gardens perpetual calendar on our wall recording birthdays,  marriages etc for years and  now we could see it alive for ourselves. It was truly stunning!

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Captain America enjoyed the visit too!

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Quite like this as a garden ornament …better than the real thing!

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We drove further on to Lake Cowichan where we stayed in an idyllic log cabin by a river and set in spacious gardens with lots of bird life and luckily no bears….perfect!

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DSC01521.jpgWhilst there we enjoyed a parade …those clans get everywhere!

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Chemainus is known for the town murals which were everywhere  and huge!

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Days later we moved on to Torfino but called into Cathedral…something…I’ve forgotten the name …where we walked through some spectacular original rain forest.

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Now on the Pacific Rim the beaches were spectacular and our next accommodation was amazing set as it was in a rainforest with no curtains and just trees all around!

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View of tree from our bed…one did feel a million eyes peering at you when you were trying to get  to sleep!

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I can assure you the Pacific is as cold as the Atlantic!

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Back in Victoria we called at the home of artist Marney Ward- a wonderful watercolour artist, who had  very kindly invited us  to visit her. We’ve long admired and loved her beautiful flower paintings and it was a joy to see her and her original work.

http://www.marneyward.com

Back in Vancouver for some final visits  to see the sights.

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Wish our local Co-op could have fruit like this!

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A visit to the Aquarium  and a last visit to the park

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and a final mushroom burger brought our amazing fantastic holiday  to a close. Lots of tears saying goodbye but lots of magic family memories to take away. Thank you David and all the family for giving us such a fantastic and happy time. We warn you now we’ll be back!

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