Louise Queen

Archive for the ‘Sites and Sounds’ Category

Anniversary Celebrations (part 1)

In Sites and Sounds on May 7, 2010 at 2:07 pm

My parent’s celebrated their 25th Wedding Anniversary on the 27th of April and decided to spend the occasion in Nova Scotia. Here are a few snap shots of what they (and us) got up to…

Exploring Card Lake – whilst trying to avoid the rain.

“Enjoying” (it wasn’t very good) a cup of coffee at the Westin Hotel in Halifax before heading out for dinner and to see a Johnny Cash Tribute Band at the Paragon Theatre.

Us at the Paragon Theatre. It’s a shame that the performers didn’t quite live up to our expectations.

Dad’s favorite spot when we weren’t “out and about”.

Mum sees if she measures up!

The sun is shining! The weather has been a little temperamental recently. However, the sun has decided to make an appearance today so we’re off out for a bit. More pictures to follow…


The History of Robert Burns and the Burns Supper

In Sites and Sounds on January 25, 2010 at 7:14 pm

Burns Supper

Well today is non other than the 25th of January – the birthday of a famous Scottish poet, Robert [Rabbie] Burns.

Robbie BurnsRobbie Burns

Robbie Burns was born on the 25th January 1759 just south of Ayr (on the Scottish west coast) and is widely regarded as Scotland’s national poet. He was born into poverty and hardship, a farmers son. He had no formal education and what he learnt came mainly from his father, who did his best to teach his children reading, writing, arithmetic, geography and history.

By the age of 15 the responsibility of his father’s farm had fallen to Rabbie and it was during the harvest of 1774 that he was inspired to write, ‘O, Once I Lov’d A Bonnie Lass’

In the summer of 1775, he was sent to finish his education with a tutor at Kirkoswald, where he met Peggy Thomson, to whom he wrote two songs, Now Westlin’ Winds and I Dream’d I Lay.

Robbie Burns was notorious for his casual love affairs and his first illegitimate child, Elizabeth Paton Burns (1785-1817), was born to his mother’s servant, Elizabeth Paton (1760-circa 1799), as he was embarking on a relationship with Jean Armour. She bore him twins in 1786, and although her father initially forbade their marriage, they were eventually married in 1788. She bore him nine children in total, but only three survived infancy.

During a rift in his relationship with Jean Armour in 1786, and as his prospects in farming declined, he began an affair with Mary Campbell (1763-1786), to whom he dedicated the poems The Highland Lassie O, Highland Mary and To Mary in Heaven. Their relationship has been the subject of much conjecture, and it has been suggested that they may have married. They planned to emigrate to Jamaica, where Burns intended to work as a bookkeeper on a slave plantation. This plan never came to fruition due to the death of Burn’s Jamaican contact. That summer, he published the first of his collections of verse, Poems, Chiefly in the Scottish dialect, which created a sensation and has been recognized as a significant literary event.

As the years passed Burns continued to write and publish his works until his death was caused by bacterial endocarditis exacerbated by a streptococcal infection reaching his blood following a dental extraction in winter 1795.The funeral took place on 25 July 1796, the day his son Maxwell was born. A memorial edition of his poems was published to raise money for his wife and children, and within a short time of his death, money started pouring in from all over Scotland to support them.

Burns Supper

The format of Burns suppers (which takes place on or as near to Burn’s birthday as possible) has not changed since his death in 1796. The basic format starts with a general welcome and announcements followed with the Selkirk Grace. After the grace comes the piping and cutting of the haggis, where Robert’s famous Address To a Haggis is read and the haggis is cut open. The event usually allows for people to start eating just after the haggis is presented.


What is haggis? Read the rest of this entry »

A day out with our new truck

In Sites and Sounds on November 22, 2009 at 5:57 pm

Now that both Cameron and I are both official Canadian Permanent Residents, we thought we’d celebrate the Canadian way – by buying ourselves a rather large truck..

We only collected it yesterday and since today was such a beautiful day we thought we’d go on a little adventure. After a breakfast of homemade hash browns and bacon (thanks to my lovely husband) we headed off towards Rissers beach.

Rissers beach

We found some cool shells and even a massive lobster claw – I bet there would have been some good eating on this guy! We’re looking forward to eating some lobster again soon (lobster season has just started).

Read the rest of this entry »

Fall Colours

In Sites and Sounds on October 25, 2009 at 4:44 pm

Cameron and I have been awake since 5am this morning, well in fact that’s maybe a slight lie… Since I was awake at 5am and couldn’t get back to sleep I decided to give Cameron a wee poke so I’d have someone to talk to. The reason I was awake at that time? Howling winds and driving rain – to the point where the rain was coming in under the patio door and the windows were leaking. We had to run round laying down towels and strategically placing pots/pans etc. Once this mission was completed we climbed back under the covers, after a cup of tea, and some more chit chat we both finally drifted off again for a little while. Amazingly we woke to blue skies and gorgeous sunshine. We decided to make the best of the weather and headed off out for a walk around the old railway line in Lunenburg. The colours were amazing, truly beautiful. I think these pictures say it all…





DSCF2148 Read the rest of this entry »

Corb Lund and the Hurtin’ Albertans

In Sites and Sounds on October 20, 2009 at 9:57 am

Saturday night meant a trip to Halifax casino but we didn’t go to gamble. The casino has three showrooms which are used to host a variety of concerts, gigs etc.

A few months back Cameron came home after being out in the car listening to the radio, to inform me that there was this song he quite liked. Eventually I got round to have a listen and for once we actually agreed. Next time we were in the supermarket we bought the Corb Lund album. When the next album came out, we got that too!

The new album, which he was ironically playing at the casino, is titled…


The only member of the band not from Alberta, is the guitarist who is in fact from Manitoba. The band regularly tour Canada, The USA and Australia – they’ve been to Europe too and have played at Glastonbury festival.


Lund is the song writer for all the Corb Lund and the Hurtin’ Albertans songs. He is a fourth-generation Albertan, coming from a long line of cowboys and ranchers. Lund is a self proclaimed history buff, and his repertoire contains many songs about the military.
They have received 22 awards, including Canadian Country Music Association Awards for 2008 Roots Artist of the Year and Juno Awards 2006 Roots and Traditional Album of the Year. They also have been nominated for many other awards, mostly within Canada.

If you go to amazon, you can listen to some of his songs

Losin’ Lately Gambler

The View from our Window

In Sites and Sounds on October 16, 2009 at 9:25 am

Today I woke up, looked out the window and this is that I saw…

The Balmoral

The Balmoral

A pair of binoculars, a little internet research and we soon found out that the ship was in fact called The Balmoral. It had anchored in the channel outside our house as it was simply too large to make it into the harbour at Lunenburg. Smaller boats taxied passengers and crew into the town.

The Balmoral can carry 1350 passengers, 510 crew and weighs an impressive 43,537 grt (gross register tonnage). For more information visit the Fred Olsen cruise lines website


Mahone Bay Scarecrow Festival (Part 2)

In Sites and Sounds on October 5, 2009 at 12:08 pm

This is my favorite one, the farmer with his cows – setup outside the Post office, you can just about see the Canada post sign behind the farmer..

Dancing anyone?

I think these guys resemble more traditional scarecrows…



On the Saturday night (once it’s dark) there is a Pumpkin Walk. 150 carved/lit pumpkins line a path…. If you go to Jackie’s Blog you will be able to see some pictures!

Mahone Bay Scarecrow Festival (Part 1)

In Sites and Sounds on October 5, 2009 at 11:57 am

As a celebration of Fall, every year Mahone Bay hosts it’s annual Scarecrow festival. Last Saturday was the 13th Annual festival but a first for Cameron and myself. Residents and businesses alike take part in The Great Scarecrow Challenge, and the Scarecrow’s didn’t disappoint.

Here is a pirate down near the wharf…



And how about Ray Charles and Tina Turner…

Tina Turner

Tina Turner

Introducing the Royal Family….

I wonder what this poor woman did to deserve such a punishment…

Hungry? Fancy a pizza?

First Ever Canadian Camping

In Sites and Sounds on September 14, 2009 at 3:30 pm

For want of something better to do this weekend just past, we decided to pack up the canoe and head off for an over night trip.

We settled initially on Shingle Lake, 30km west of Bridgewater, however on arrival I had a change of heart and much to Cameron’s annoyance refused to even consider canoeing here. The reason: access to the lake was via a stream, involving an upstream paddle, landing (I’m not sure where), pulling the canoe over some rapids, re-entering the canoe, and continuing to paddle upstream until lake access was achieved. Sounds tricky huh (remember I’m just a beginner)? Anyway my flat out refusal ended in a domestic, tears and my refusal to go anywhere other than home.

After heading in the wrong direction (i.e. not towards home – Cameron was driving), my curiosity got the better of me, and we decided to call a truce and continue on with the camping adventure. Next port of call was The Christopher Lakes (near Caledonia) – a succession of lakes joined by various portages.

We loaded everything into the canoe and entered the water easily via a boat ramp. We paddled the full couple of km’s to where the camp site was marked on the map and stopped for lunch.



We snacked on homemade cider, tuna sandwiches and cookies before jumping back in the canoe to explore some more. On the way up the lake we had bumped into a couple of other canoeist who had told us about a cabin where we could stay. The journey would involve carrying the canoe up one of the portages.



We eventually found the portage but decided it was too long a carry and also too dangerous to come back down the connecting stream as it was pretty rocky. We decided to look around the lake and see if we couldn’t find a good camping spot where we were Read the rest of this entry »

Holiday Snaps 3

In Sites and Sounds on August 26, 2009 at 2:00 pm


Fishing for Mackerel at Indian Point. Sadly this wasn’t one that we caught. However, we did catch one later but the camera battery had died by then.


Kayaking at Back Harbour, Lunenburg


Kayak Celebration


We discovered that Ashley ‘doesn’t do mornings’ Read the rest of this entry »