Thursday, June 1, 2023

We thought it over

 We have agreed that the ClassA motor home is just going to be too much for us.  The gas alone would really restrict our movements. D&B have taken an option on a really nice van that is ripe for conversion.  They want to make a last trip down east so they are anxious to get on the road.

M. and I are the kind of people who like to get off the beaten path and take the road less travelled. In some of my historical posts I chit chat about taking an interesting dirt road or two or three and getting lost in the back country. We wouldn't be able to do that in a big motor home. We would also be restricted in what kind of place we could park, and once we were there, we were there. It's just not right for us.

We took a meander out to Golden Lake late this afternoon. M. had service calls out there and I had a mission as well. There is a really nice nursery out there called Gerbers. Their prices are a bit more than the department store garden centers, but the selection and quality of the plants is far superior. I bought two boxes of marigolds and one of cherry tomatoes. The marigolds will help guard the vegetable gardens from pests. I planted three of the tomatoes and offered the rest to family members. I'll keep one for my dear daughter to plant in her garden when she gets back from meandering down south with her father.

I didn't bother to put any bug dope on while planting and watering this evening. Oh My Goodness! I am a mess. I sat here reading for a bit until M. ordered me to go shower. When I looked in the mirror I was quite horrifed. The BLOOD! (I hope my white towels won't be stained) So many black fly bites! I look like I have some sort of pox. My nose and one ear are swollen and red and my forehead is covered with hives. After the shower I took some Benadryl. This should teach me to gird up before going out these days!

The heat is just getting tough to handle. M. unpacked the AC this afternoon and we turned it on for awhile before we left for Golden Lake.  It was nice to come on to a coolish house. The basement is still down right cold so we are running the furnace fan to circulate that chilly air for the most part. It looks like the heat is going to break tomorrow. Lets pray for rain.

Wednesday, May 31, 2023

Not the news we want to hear

 We just heard that there is a forest fire rather close to us. It's on Barron Canyon Rd., One of the main public routes into Algonquin Park. All the years I've lived in this area, we've never had a fire that close.

I finished the last planting of beans this evening and gave the gardens a good soak just as darkness fell. Now it's time to watch it grow and keep the weeds in check.

I had quite a long nap before dinner so I'll probably read my book until the wee hours.


 My late husband and I had a couple of trailers. We gave up that lifestyle when we moved back out to the homestead in the bush in 1998.  Our trailers were a respite from living in the town. My house alone was on the main drag for goodness sake.

M. and I, and his parents, have been talking about buying an RV. We've been looking for weeks for a ClassC motorhome. There is an awful lot of absolute JUNK out there. For example, one guy was advertising one that looked very nice on the outside. Inside, well, there was no inside. It had been gutted. You should have seen the roof! There were 2x6 pieces fastened in with who knows what, all willy nilly. The gas tank was a jerry can with a piece of rubber hose going to it. And there was no ownership. He said it blew out the window. Yeah, right. I think this guy pulled this piece of garbage out of the scrap yard.

So where are we today? A former business associate of M. has a wife who is very ill, and they are quite elderly. They have decided to part ways with their very nice Class A. For those not familiar with these types of motor homes, this is a biggie. We have to give it a lot of thought. It is big, 31 feet. I'll never be able to drive it. M. will have to do a lot of practicing. His father has many years of experience hauling around a trailer from one end of the country to the other, so he isn't stressed. 

I'll keep you posted......

It is extremely hot here in the east today. We went shopping for the dinner party, but other than that, haven't been out the door. I nap a lot in this heat.

Tuesday, May 30, 2023

Quiet day

 I sat outdoors in the screen tent with my book for awhile. The gardens got watered. I noticed a chipmunk trying to drink water from the hummingbird feeder. Now there are pans of water here and there for the little creatures. The birdbath is full. The robins are doing a lot of scrapping so I expect the younguns have fledged.

The heat is on and I'm laying low.

Wednesday, March 3, 2021

More Old Stuff

 My maternal grandfather, Andrew Pearson, and his siblings

My United Empire Loyalist family line is through Elizabeth Cole

Mom's school photo circ. 1930. She is the wee girl, third row right

Did your family enjoy picnics by the side of the road as much as we did?


Saturday, February 27, 2021


 Thank goodness it is warming up a lot. We have three feet of snow on every roof which needs to melt off asap!

Yesterday was a lovely respite after that storm, but darn it all if it isn't snowing again today. It's going to be nice and warm this afternoon so we will get out walking.

I've been spending snow days going through old SD cards looking for some old photos. MyHeritage has this feature where they can animate a photo. The face will look at you, blink, look side to side and perhaps smile. I want to find a decent photo of my grandfather to try.

I found these lovely photos of my maternal grandparents. 

Their engagement photo

Their wedding in the garden of the home where I grew up

Grandma and her siblings

Enjoying their retirement  at our family summer home in Cobourg Ontario on Lake Ontario

Sunday, November 15, 2020

Genealogy and DNA

My regular readers know about my passion for our family genealogy.
I grew up hearing about my paternal grandmothers family history as United Empire Loyalists. It was interesting to me because we were learning about it at school in Grade 4.
In my early 20s I met my fathers first cousin who introduced me to genealogical research. She had a wonderful big binder full of great records. My fathers aunt also started corresponding with me about her research. She lived close to the Victoria Archives in Toronto. My father wasn't all that interested in it beyond the obvious.
I was 9 or 10 when I figured out that the guy I knew as my grandfather was NOT my grandfather. I think my cousin Debbie told me that he had just died, but my father didn't go to the funeral, which seemed odd. It would be years before I learned the identity of my grandfather.
Just before my father passed away, his youngest sister told me to look into the surname Brotherston. Oh yes, I discovered a lot from that hint! I found the 1921 census with my father and his closest sister, his mother and grandparents....and the surname of record was Brotherston.  I have since managed to find his two sisters birth announcement in a local newspaper, but still haven't got any kind of birth record for Dad. 

In 2014, Another person, thinking she was a sibling to my father (he's had several we never knew about) convinced me to invest in one of these DNA kits. As it happened, the woman was not a blood relative, but an adopted cousin to my father. (We have a loving friendship to this day, though she is now suffering dementia.
I had ordered a rogue kit to carry in my purse if an opportunistic situation ever popped up. I mentioned it to my brother and he said "I'll do it!" Like me, my brother was very anxious for proof that this Mr. Brotherston was our true grandfather. We were in for a big surprise! My brother did indeed have many good matches to the Brotherston clan which sealed that deal. I had the pleasure of connecting to a distant cousin who was living in the part of Scotland where our ancestors originated. He took many photographs and found lots of church records. We discovered that our 4xgreat grandfather was illegitimate. Brian had to convince the rector to let him look at a special book that was not usually open to the public. That's where he found the baptism of this special child.
We have reconnected to several close cousins in our hometown. It makes me so sad that my grandfather lived in our neighbourhood during my childhood. I don't know if I ever met him, though I do have memories of his second wife. I never knew she was my fathers stepMother, though, Just some random old lady who seem to like us, and gave us treats when we visited her. 
My greatgrandparents with my Grandmother and baby Ed

Grandfather Bill Brotherston

My dear old Da in his army gear

After my aunt died, my cousin was going through her belongings and found a photo of my Grandpa Bill. My father and his sister Beryl looked so much like him it's just mind boggling! We have since found at least one more sibling for my father. She has passed, but I've connected with her youngest daughter.

Men and women carry the X chromosome from their mothers. Only men carry the Y and pass it to their male offspring. We upgraded my brothers test to include his Y. We were very surprised to have one match with the surname of Herriott.  It turns out this gentleman is the clan chief. We have carried on an interesting correspondence and upgraded my brothers testing levels several times. He just keeps getting more and more Herriot(t) matches. We are presently waiting for a major test result that is of great interest to the Herriot Clan Heritage Association. All of these matches can link their lineage back to a rather well known guy who came to New Jersey in the 1600s. My brothers on the other hand, is believed to go back even further. We are rather excited to see just how far. 
So the big question a Mr. Herriot the missing father of the 4x great grandfather? 

Our paternal grandmothers heritage is quite interesting. She had an ancestor on the Mayflower. She had ancestors among the first dozen colonists in what is now New York and the state of Rhode Island. She descends from Loyalist and Patriots, a pirate and a spy.
Grandfather Bill has cousins who were Lords. Ever heard of the Stanley Cup? Grandpa is a descendant of the Stanley family. One of his original maternal ancestors came to Canada at the behest of the Stanley family. The mother of said family was the Stanley. After she died, Lord Stanley left her widower an inheritance with the condition he bring the children to Canada and establish a new life. They bought quite a large farm, which is to this day a real showplace in our home county.