Mill Village, Nova Scotia

9 09 2013

Today we decided to have a closer look at Mill Village, rather than just driving past it on the highway. Mill Village developed as a logging and lumber community because of the River Medway.

We left the car at the Post Office and walked over this bridge which crossed the Medway.


Right on the other side of the bridge, by the river, is this interesting old village store.

A2The store sells most grocery items as well as Martock beef, chicken, veil and bison and Foxhill cheese. There is a gift shop and a very nice Cafe. We didn’t know about the cafe and had our picnic with us, but we still managed to try out their coffee and blueberry scones! Next time we’ll stop for lunch.

A1The walk through the community is surrounded by ancient hard wood trees and pine trees.

I  loved the way this tree and rock made a natural scupture.

A5There weren’t many locals about, apart from this little girl, tied to the tree. Perhaps this is a local form of punishment?


Next to Mill Village is Charleston, not Charlestown as in Fife.


The residents of this house seemed very pleased to see us.


As we walked back to the car, we had a last look at the River Medway.

We will bring our bikes here in the fall and cycle up the Medway to Bang Falls. I think the colours will be amazing!



The Knitting Bug

17 06 2013

Apart from a couple of pairs of socks, I haven’t knitted anything for 30 years. I thought I might struggle, especially after breaking a wrist when we first arrived here in Canada, but I think knitting must be a bit like riding a bicycle – once you learn it, you don’t forget.

I started off with a couple of blankets, because I thought they would be the simplest, with no shaping.

A1 Then, another couple of blankets.


Then, yet another blanket, which I presented to Louise at her baby shower.

A3I found a free Paton’s pattern for a sock monkey, but think it looks pretty weird! I prefer the rabbit.

A After knitting this stripey cardigan, I still had enough wool for the wee matching helmet.


I liked this pattern, so made 3 of these.


The bright pink was bought for this waistcoat, but I used some for the hood of the little jacket.


This pattern was for newborn, but I think it might fit a dolly.


This little yellow hoody feels really cosy. I think I’ll knit another one of these.

EI bought this mint green wool in Zeller’s closing down sale, but was not happy about the quality of it. I think it will stretch quickly. If you’re taking the trouble to knit something, then it’s probably wise to buy a good wool for the job.

FpgAt the moment I’m stitching together a toy moose, have started a much better monkey than the blue one above and am knitting another cardigan.  I have the knitting bug again!

Nova Scotia Folk Art – Folk Art Maritime – Lunenburg

17 07 2012

Folk Art was a new form of art for me until I moved here to Nova Scotia and I have come to enjoy the bright colours and humour in it.

At Folk Art Maritime in Lunenburg, right across from the Library, there is a fine selection of pieces by artists from all corners of Nova Scotia.

There are figures, animals, birds, fish and paintings.

I love this  smoking sailor by Bradford Naugler. The carving is 36″ high and is very colourful.

This fisherman is all set to head out to sea. The artist is Reed Timmons of Cape Breton, who worked as a lobster fisherman, so lots of his pieces are inspired by that.

Frank Corkum is a local artist. He was a carpenter and built some of the church steeples around Lunenburg. He carved this tall Sailor. The Puffin is by Mae Workman, the Loon by Sam Amiro, and the Maroon Clown Fish, by Bill Roach.

I think this is my favourite piece in the Gallery at the moment, again by Reed Tmmons. This is what folk art is all about – something to make you smile and enjoy it.

Fishwing the Heron is a nicely finished piece by Terrance Fortune. It is very appropriate to this area, as we see herons in every bay, every day, stalking their breakfast.

The tail feathers on the  Red Tailed Rooster make it look very striking.

Cats and dogs are always popular subjects and I’m sure it won’t be long until Calimanco the Cat, finds a new home.

Likewise, the Brown and White Dog, which looks a bit like a beagle.The Wasp Queen with Tulip, shows what folk artists do best; take a theme and make a whole story around it. This wasp could be a character from a child’s story book.

I chose a few of my favourite pieces from the gallery, but now realise that this is mainly a Reed Timmons blog! I guess he must be the artist I rate highest – at the moment.

If you want to see the other pieces in the Gallery, look at

or come by the Gallery and see them for yourself. Maybe you need a special gift for a wedding, or are travelling to visit someone in another province or country. You couln’t find anything more unique to Nova Scotia!

New Folk Art Gallery in Lunenburg

9 07 2011

The major event of this summer in Lunenburg, is the opening of a new Folk Art Gallery in Pelham Street, right opposite the Library.

Over the past few weeks our friends, Gareth and Bill Miller, have been busy planning and researching for this building, intent on making the space match its purpose.

I had never heard of ‘Folk Art’ until I came to Nova Scotia. This work is done usually by people who have not been trained as artists, their themes being unsophisticated, but highly original. There is usually a humourous and often eccentric slant to it.

So this building had to reflect its purpose and instead of the boring grey building  –

it was transformed to this bright happy colour.

The inside had an even more dramatic change, with the removal of a wall and the addition this vibrant turquoise paint.

It wasn’t until the art work was added that it really looked like a Gallery.

In the window, you can see Moe the Dog, by Bill Roach, the Blue Cow, by Reed Timmons, and Blue Rooster by Barry Colpitts.

This piece is called ‘Lunenburg Bump with Sou’wester’ by Vivian Bell Zinck, making a play on the architectural window feature of Lunenburg.

The rooster, you will see is a recurring theme, as well as cows, cats and dogs.

This lady is a bird house!

‘Smoked Cod’ is the title here, I think that says it all.

So, if you are visiting Lunenburg this summer, you must make your way to Folk Art Maritime, where you are sure to find something unique for yourself, or as a special gift.

You can also look at their other Folk Art at

Bear River Revisited

8 07 2011

I love Bear River, this little tidal village just inland from Digby, Nova Scotia. The last time I wrote about it was in April 2009 and everything was closed as the season hadn’t begun.

Last week-end Jeff and I headed to Digby Pines Resort for our 40th Wedding Anniversary!

We decided to stop at Bear River to have our picnic beside the river. There is a lovely garden, complete with picnic tables and benches.

The roses were in full bloom,

and a wonderful perfume filled the air.

I’m not sure what this lovely white flower is – a member of the geranium?

Or these?

I think this must be the remains of an old wharf at the riverside.

Bear River has some great little shops and galleries.

The Flight of Fancy is a fantastic shop with art, pottery, glass, jewellery, rug-hooking, carvings …….

Myrtle and Rosie’s.

This Bargain Book Shop seems to sell a lot more than just books!

We saw the sign for the Sunday afternoon market and headed back to the river.

There I met Flora Doehler – a Facebook Friend, artist and writer of a Blog about her life in Bear River.

Our Bear River Adventure

These young folk filled the air with lively Irish music.

It was a hot day and we continued our travels to Digby Pines for a swim in their outdoor pool. (another Blog to follow)

Making Christmas Wreaths

21 12 2010

Last week I joined the group from the Lunenburg Garden Club, to learn how to make a wreath for the door.

Svenja Dee arrived laden with everything one would need to make an exciting wreath.

Ribbons of reds and pinks …

greens, blues, yellows and golds.

Large rolls of net.

Walnuts, almonds, chestnuts ……


and dried orange and apple slices.


And so we arranged ourselves around the table, each with a wire ring, a roll of binding wire and a great choice of greenery in the centre.


The art seems to be in making small bunches and tying them onto the wire ring in a clockwise direction, so that the new bunch covers the stems of the previous one.

It was nice to add a bit of holly for variety.

I seemed to be the last person to finish  this project, but think that I’ll be better next year.

Everyone had their own unique wreath to take home at the end of the evening.

This one had lovely green balls and ribbons.

And these two wreaths are very different from each other.


Susan chose a bright red and gold ribbon to match the coloured balls.

These shells make a very natural finish to this very attractive wreath.

I thought I’d have to go with the nearest to a tartan ribbon and chose the cinnamon and nuts to complement the colours.

I took a walk round Lunenburg and photographed some of the wreaths on the homes.


The doorway is decorated inside and out.


These wreaths are on all the windows and doors of the pub.


And this elaborate green ribboned wreath, is at the door of Cilantro, the kitchen shop, occupying the famous green painted building in town.

And these are above the doorway of the raspberry building.

This one has a very fancy ribbon.

And this doorway and stairway have wreaths.

I finish with a photo of this large wreath in the window of Ironworks – featured in my last Blog.

And wish everyone a ‘Very Happy Christmas.’

Tartan Totes and Tartan Bags

9 08 2009

Some of you already know about our new cottage industry. Louise and I were trying to think of something we could do from home that would involve our past life in Scotland and our new life in Nova Scotia and came up with the idea of making bags from recycled and new tartan.

This is quite different from Glenshee Pottery, yet similar, in that we are making something by hand and so every piece is unique. We are learning a great deal as we make new designs and having to redesign styles that don’t work the way we think they should. It is all very exciting and I look forward to each new bag.

Louise’s friend,Caitlin, was over from Scotland and she loved the green fabric of a shirt we had, so we made her a bag from it. We managed to incorporate the shirt pocket into the bag and used braces as the closure. We even managed to make this bag reversible.


I think the green flannel works well with the check.


Louise bought this new fabric as she thought it would be a change from traditional tartan. I wasn’t sure about it, but now that it’s been made into a bag, I think this might be a colour for the young ones.

CI made this nice Stewart Black tartan into a bag for a friend’s birthday and she seemed delighted with it. I should have taken a photo of the Morrison’s  trolley token with the smiley face that I clicked into the keyring for Good Luck. If anyone has any lying around we could make that a feature of some bags.


This bag below is made in the Nova Scotia tartan. It is bright but jolly.


Take a look at our web site

Please leave comments on what you think works with our idea and how we can improve it. We will be very grateful for all advice and suggestions on how to market our goods.