Tuesday, June 30, 2015


Being Tuesday today, it was our weekly escape from the park day and we headed into Vernon to do our errands and shopping. 

However, since I am behind with my posts - again - it's last week Tuesday that I have pictures of this post. 

With Derek needing supplies from the e-cig shop in Westbank we headed south along Westside Road instead of north. You know - the crazy narrow and winding road that is under construction. It's a challenge but we took it on anyway.

Once in Westbank our first stop was the Buckerfield's store - we've been looking high and low for a hoe for the park. It was our last option.

Who knew they had animals out back!

Our animal girl was excited and nervous all at the same time.

Following the banking, the e-cig shop and Canadian Tire we headed to Paynter's Fruit Market. We don't get there often but decided to stop since we had by this time decided to carry on to Peachland for a few hours.

We LOVE Peachland! 
It's one of our favourite places in the Okanagan. Sadly, we don't get here often and not at all in the last few years. Since it was an impromptu visit I didn't have the camera - just my phone. Next time I'll do better.

A lady Derek was talking to at Paynters suggested Ships-A-Hoy for lunch. We highly recommend - a great place with super fish and chips.

There is a park across from the main strip along the water. 

We were also here for Cas to play on a different playground. 

And to sit in the shade and eat our cherries. This is Cassia's - ok another picture - look.

It was a nice day out. 

Since we only leave the park once a week - we are working on making a day of it. Our tendency is to rush back but our staff can and do manage without us. We appreciate the change of scenery. 

We had so much fun we'll head back to Peachland soon. 

Right now we are in the midst of very high temperatures and thunderstorms. We had a huge one last night that knocked out our power - just as I was setting up to do this post and put a few pics on facebook. 

With the power out we once again had to rush to close all of our washrooms and shower buildings at the park. Since the power didn't return until overnight it was Derek who had to be up at 4:30 am to go around and open them up! 

A pretty neat sky last night.

As I sit here on our veranda I can feel the wind picking up - another storm will probably move through soon.

I've been taking lots of photos of our gardens lately - I'll show them to you next post.

Happy Canada Day 
from the Wood Clan!

Monday, June 22, 2015


When we started this blog 'a life made simple' way back in 201, I was planning for it to be about the where, what, whys and hows of what we thought was a simple life. I have to say that over the years, as we have travelled during the winters and worked steady through the summer months, I have really wondered where the 'simple' fit in.

And now more then ever I am wondering about where the 'simple' fits in. I've been thinking about that as a blog post for a few weeks but tonight isn't the night - it will have to wait.

Along those lines, however was that the 'simple' back then was really to be more about living frugally. Our lifestyle requires us to be frugal. Being frugal is actually not so simple but it is the one things I hope we can hold on to as we go forward leading a more stable life - now that we won't be traveling south for the winter. 

For us, and many others - to be frugal means to be conscious about where our money is spent and finding ways to make do without something or to be creative about procuring it. For me, one of my favourite things to decrease our spending, while at the same time increase the quality of the products we consume, is to make things myself. 

For years now I have been making our toothpaste for instance. I admit to not doing that while on the road - which is why I often question how simple the road life is. As many of you can attest to - there are many things that are much simpler when living in a house then on the road. 

Last week I tackled something else that I've been wanting to make homemade for some time.

Almond and coconut milk. 

I did make almond milk once a couple of years ago and loved the result. The other day when I took my first sip of my first batch I wondered why I haven't continued.

Learning a few weeks ago that commercial almond milk is only about 2% almonds I decided to once again make our own.

By the way - last week we picked up this fancy new blender for me. I'm the kind of gal who likes domestic gifts. I've been putting smoothies out for years with a little itty bitty single serve blender from Walmart. I knew I needed a new blender so did some research. I decided if we were going to invest we may as well go all the way. 

The Ninja Ultima turned out to be the one I chose. Imagine my excitement when it went on sale at Canadian Tire a few weeks ago - down to $139 from $249!

Not the most exciting photos but hey - it's a pretty easy process. The almonds have to be soaked overnight which is one of the best things about making the milk yourself because it sprouts the almonds. I used Wellness Mama's recipe which you can find here.

Here's my Ninja in action - it's powerful so it's loud. No doing this while someone is napping!

Without cheesecloth I used a tea towel for straining. As the recipe mentioned, I then put the almonds on a cookie sheet, dried them and put them back in the Ninja.

Amazingly good and really a pretty easy process - well worth the effort. With that I moved on a few days later to Coconut Milk - which is beyond amazing. We are particular fans of Trader Joe's Coconut Milk but this even beats that!

I have to say that I haven't worked out the cost - so I'm not sure if we are saving money by doing this. All the articles I've read say that it is cheaper to make your own even with the high price of almonds. 

I also wanted to share with you are newest find that we are now quite addicted to - Organic Fair Soda Syrups. I do want to get into making our own sodas also but these are doing quite well in the mean time. The soda syrup is generally essences, herbs and spices - which we add to soda water. 

If you are wondering how the campground here at Fintry has been going it's been great. Well, of course there are those things that aren't so great that come with the territory but all in all we are having a super season so far. 

We've been full on the weekends with still fairly quiet weekdays. That's about to change with the end of school and start of summer vacations this week. We expect to full or almost full most nights from this weekend until the September long weekend. 

Our flower, vegetable and fruit gardens are also doing great - I'll take some pictures soon.


Saturday, June 20, 2015


Of course - this one is for you Rob.......

How many times have I disappeared on you all now so far - too many times to count - right?! So - I'll forgo the apologies.

I need a new format.

My trouble seems to be that for whatever reason, I think I need to provide you all with 100's of pictures per post. With such little free time on my hands these days - a post of that magnitude is daunting. I give up before I've even started.

My new plan is to keep the topic and corresponding photos short.

So - here goes the first of - hopefully - many more posts - I'm still shooting for a few posts a week. Let's see how I do. Again - no need to tell you how crazy our schedule is these days....

Last Tuesday, as with every Tuesday, we headed into Vernon for our grocery and errand run.

It was a hot day.

While I took on grocery shopping at Superstore, Derek and Cassia made a couple of new friends.

As you can imagine - Cassia was in horse heaven! 

Nice of Earl's owner to let Cassia have her way with him. Earl was very patient. Because I was the one with the camera - well our phone anyway - a second round of riding was necessary so that it could be documented when I arrived on the scene. 

Thanks again to Pat (we think that is Earl's owners name -yikes! Don't you hate when you can't remember a name!). If not - and you are reading this - Earl's owner - please write us.

Anyway, as I said it was hot - really hot - so from there we carried on home - or on to our next stop anyway. 

Rob - by the way is our loyal blog reading friend from Vernon -- Earl's water came via Rob. He suggested the title of tonight's post.

Happy Father's Day to Derek and the rest of you Dad's out there!


Monday, June 1, 2015


First off, Cassia would like to thank everyone that commented on the last post - I'm 6 today!. So many thoughtful best wishes for her Birthday! She's been much too busy on her tractor to get back to the computer. 

Actually, her post was not the first time that she has taken to writing - she's been at it since she was about three months old!

For the first two years of her life, every three months or so I would send out a 'Cassia Memo' to our family and friends. I would include the latest pictures and Cassia would 'write' about her life - what she had been up to and all the things she had learned. It was a fun way to keep everyone up to date about her development. 

It's been many years now since I've done that so it was fun being Cassia again. Boy, it's tough writing as a kid - although I think I have her down pat after listening to her throughout the day. If you know Cassia, you'll know what I mean, she has no problem expressing herself verbally!

With all of our travels - and living in a park in the summer, I was actually going to start a blog or website working off of this idea. Having Cassia 'write' about her adventures. It was to be a way to teach her as well as other children based on all the experiences Cassia has - particularly while traveling. As our life style has now changed that has fallen by the wayside - I think it would have been a great thing though.

Anyway, lets get to our newest pictures!

I've been taking pictures of all the flowers in the park over the last few weeks. It's a great time of year here at Fintry because there is so much in bloom, from wildflowers to those in our garden to those over at the Manor House.

This one and the next few were taken by Derek as he, Cassia and Rufus have been hiking. Here are the lupin.

There are a lot of great things about our new home but the amount of walking areas is one of the best.

Cassia showing off a wild rose. 
We have so many here that their scent in some areas hangs in the air.

Sadly, all the lilacs are gone. Nice that Derek captured a white one up on the hill.

Once in while Cassia and I take the camera down to the Manor House to see what is in bloom. A week or so ago it was these irises.

And the Hawthorne.

These are locust blooms - they smelled amazing.

Beautiful and prolific spirea.

I had never seen a Horse Chestnut flower before!

Meanwhile - back at our place - we were happy to see that our irises, that came with the house, were purple and yellow.

And our raspberry bushes are making good progress. You would not believe how many raspberries we are going to have this year!

Cassia and I checking out the maple tree.

Derek had mentioned that the roses's were in bloom down at the Manor House so that is where we stopped this morning.

In speaking with Dan of the Friends of Fintry, the other day, we learned that these are very old roses.

And they all have a very strong scent!

Sorry, I have no idea what type they are.

See the spider?

We brought some petals home with us - which was a great idea as our dining room smelt very nice today.

Amazing - right?! We are truly blessed to live in such a beautiful place.

And on the way home! Our Marmentos!
 If you recall - last year we had one marmot at Kentucky Alleyne - we called him Marmento. There are so many marmots here we've lost count - but we call them all Marmento - particularly this guy on the left as he is closest to our house. That's his mate on the right. If you look close down below you can see junior with his head just out of their hole.

A relaxing Monday night here at Fintry. It was another busy weekend -  definitely a ramping up towards the summer holidays. We had about 85 of our 100 sites filled, plus two of the three group sites. 

Tomorrow is a town day - good thing since rain is forecasted - then we'll be spending the rest of the week getting the park ready for another busy weekend. Last Friday we had one of the hardest downpours we have seen anywhere in a while. Lots of tree seeds down and mud build up. 

By the way, our company - Kaloya Contracting Ltd. -  just launched it's new website and it looks great! If you are on facebook be sure to like them to get the latest and to see pictures of all their parks over the summer months.


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