This blog is about our travels in our solar powered "Airstream" and living off grid, in our passive solar home, near Bancroft, Ontario, Canada.

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Monday, 31 August 2015


Farm fresh produce is in abundance here and there is no better place to buy than the local farmers' markets.

Saturday I stopped in Peterborough to get some peaches and carrots. There was such a range of fresh produce available all wonderfully displayed for you to see and select.

Markets are busy this time of year thanks to the abundance of choices available. I believe the Peterborough Market runs until Thanksgiving then moves inside for the winter months. If you live in the area pay a visit some Saturday morning; you won't be disappointed. Be sure to take a big bag for all the healthy produce you will buy.

Safe travels and healthy eating everyone.

Sunday, 30 August 2015


Mary's cousin Frank had a family gathering yesterday and it was good to see so many we don't see very often throughout the year.

Unfortunately Mary had to miss the party because of the wasp sting but she promises not to miss the next one.

Thanks Frank and Chris for hosting the gathering; we had a great time and look forward to doing it again next year.

Enjoy the photos. 

Good food, good company good memories. 

Saturday, 29 August 2015


Managed to catch this hummingbird about to land on our feeder. (note the feet down for the landing) The second softer image of the feeder is a reflection from the window I'm shooting through.

They are very territorial and guard the feeder as if they had exclusive rights to it. I think the top one is the owner the bottom one is the intruder being chased off. They move so fast and get so close, it amazes me they don't collide.

Mary discovered yesterday that a colony of wasps occupy  her garden. Their nest must be underground as she didn't see it but was swarmed while pulling weeds on her hugo hill. 

This morning her eye is swollen shut and she feels miserable. No party for her today.

I think we are ready for cooler weather and fewer wasps as this is the second time Mary has been swarmed this summer. Must do some research to see what can be done to prevent them from using the garden as a home next year.  

Safe travels everyone and thanks for stopping by.

Friday, 28 August 2015


Our morning walks are bug free and a little cooler these days. Another sign that the seasons are changing are the birds we see outside our windows. The goldfinches are enjoying the thistle seeds which are in abundance around the house. We purposely left them in place as we knew they would be an excellent food source this time of year. 

The hummingbirds are also busy getting ready to head south. I'll post their pictures once I get one still long enough. They do move in a hurry, especially when chased by another.

Time to get outside and enjoy some sunshine. Tomorrow we are off to a family gathering. See you there.

Thursday, 27 August 2015


Last week Mike from Solar Depot in Bancroft came out to service our equipment.

The first job was inspecting the lines that had been dug up the week before. I think a dog must have chased a chipmunk down the Big O pipe and then pulled up the pipe trying to get the chipmunk, just my guess.

Next job was replacing the breaker switch for the lines coming off the panels. These lines carry 90 volts so I didn't feel comfortable doing the job myself.

For some unknown reason the breakers have tripped twice in the last few weeks so Mike thought it best to simply replace them. When the breakers trip we don't get any current flowing from our panels to the batteries.

If you look closely you can see the two breaker switches that were replaced. Mike is re-attaching the cables and then the box cover was secured.

Everything is working fine now and our batteries are back to being fully charged by the late afternoon.

In another month or so it will be time to tilt the panels and put them into their winter position since the sun will be lower on the horizon.

We love our solar system but we do need to monitor it daily and correct issues a.s.a.p.

Time now to cut some wood and build the shelves for my office.

Thanks for stopping by and safe travels everyone.

Tuesday, 25 August 2015


Our internet service allows us to use 40 GB per month at regular speed. Once we exceed that allotment our service is slowed and uploading pictures becomes very time consuming. Last week we exceed our quota so I stopped posting on our blog. 

Today we start a new "internet" month and we are back to our regular upload speed. I have no complaints about our service and have been happy with Xplornet since we signed on a few months ago. 

This is the first time we've exceeded our limit and it was due to our use of an off site data storage service we signed up for last month. Downloading all my computer data took more time and space than I expected. Now that it is done we are good to go.

The highlight of the week and indeed the summer was our camping trip with Owen. 

He is only three and this was his first overnight trip without his parents. We stayed close to home just in case someone needed mommy. That didn't happen and we had three wonderful days together.

My awning stick you see in Owen's hands was a big source of entertainment on Saturday. He spent hours poking and pulling everything he could reach with the stick. He even got under the trailer and banged on the water tanks just to make sure everything was "safe". 

The beach was another great way to spend a few hours. Although the campground was full the beach was empty. We were surprised but happy to have the beach to ourselves.

Back at the campsite it was time to relax with Oma. Can you tell Owen likes to copy what the adults are doing? Oma was stretched out in her chair so Owen was going to stretch out in his.

Can't wait till next year when we can do it again. Maybe we need to take Owen to Florida this winter. 

Have a great day and thanks for stopping by.

Sunday, 23 August 2015


We used up our internet space for this month a week ago. 

We are fine just stopped at Sherri and Rob's to drop off Owen after a wonderful weekend of camping with our grandson. I'll write more on Tuesday and post pictures. Right time it's time for lunch then back on the road and hopefully home before it gets dark tonight.

Friday, 14 August 2015


Mary asked me to check the breaker on our panels yesterday as the amps we were collecting on such a beautiful day seemed low.

That grey box high on the pole contains two breakers and for some unknown reason one had tripped.This happened last month as well so next week Mike is coming out to replace it.

What I discovered at the base shocked me more. Something had actually dug up our electrical conduit while we were away last week. I have no idea what might have done it but my best guess is some large animal that was after a chipmunk that might have scooted down the big O pipe for safety. I'll let Mike take a look and give me his version when he is here next week.

It would appear that they chewed the end right off the pipe. If that's the case it wasn't a small animal doing the chewing. 

Just a little mystery we hope to solve.

As my Dad would say "Always something"

Enjoy the day and safe travels everyone.

Thursday, 13 August 2015


Saw Dr. McEnery at 8:15 this morning; all is good, swelling has disappeared, advised to stay on medication until done. I had a bacterial infection not an allergic reaction so no need for additional medical coverage.

Today I will work on my office, attempting to get my desk in place and organized; that might take a few days.

Thanks again for all the e-mails. 

Safe travels

Tuesday, 11 August 2015


Sorry for the lack of posts but I have been a little under the weather.

After four fabulous days with my sisters I came home with some type of bug or allergic reaction.

On the drive home my face became itchy and there was some swelling on one side. I figured I got a bite while away and went to bed expecting the problem to be gone in the morning.

By 11pm I woke Mary to take me to hospital as the swelling had increased considerably. We were in and out within an hour having seen the doctor, taken some pills and with a prescription in hand.

Unfortunately by 4am the pain in my head had increased and the swelling was worse than before. Back to the hospital where I was admitted, put on the monitor and drip and given Benadryl through a needle. 

I woke about 7 when the doctor stopped by to check on me. The swelling was down considerably and the pain had subsided so with a new prescription for stronger drugs Mary took me home.

I'm being looked after superbly, eating healthy delicious recovery meals and taking my medication every 6 hours. Hopefully in a day or two I will be 100% and back on my feet. 

So far we have no idea as to the cause of the swelling, whether it was a bug bite or an allergic reaction to something I ate on the way home.

I must say how excellent my hospital care was. They saw me promptly, kept an eye on me throughout the night and made sure I was comfortable and progressing back to health before letting me leave. Dr Keila, nurse Pam and the team at North Hastings Hospital were outstanding in my opinion. You can't ask for better care than that. 

I will post again once I am up and about and able to work outside.

Until then safe travels everyone.

Sunday, 9 August 2015


The 50th wedding anniversary continued in full swing Saturday. It was great to have everyone together and see the little ones playing and having so much fun outside.

Don and Carol, Annabelle and Jack (the ones celebrating), Mary and me.  It was wonderful to have three days with my sisters and their families. It was truly a weekend of memories.

Lots of homemade delicious food.


and games that needed help.
Madeline and Jessica helped Owen stay on the tightrope. They were a big help to all their little cousins all weekend long.

Lots of hugs.

Just a great weekend with aunts, uncles, brothers and sisters cousins and friends.

Thanks everyone who worked to make this possible and for the memories we all took home.

Safe travels everyone.

Saturday, 8 August 2015


We started the day with our usual morning walk past fields full of corn and soybeans ripening in the summer sun. This is the farming belt of Ontario and produces most of the corn, potatoes and beef we consume.

There are also many small hobby farms in the area and this one has two sheep that think the grass is greener on the other side of the fence. Sharon and Mary got them off the road and into their pens but they were soon out again. I believe Tom (the farmer) added more fence rails after lunch. We don't expect to see any sheep out enjoying breakfast this morning.

Most folks living here are independent workers or retired. Dave here restores vintage cars and gave the guys a tour of his shop.

This is the engine of the 62 Nova he just restored and is selling. When a car rolls out of his shop it's restored to perfection, a real head turner.

We concluded the day sitting around the campfire enjoying the warm summer evening and reminiscing what we were doing 50 years ago.

Today, family will show up and we will celebrate again. This is a great way to spend a weekend.

Safe travels Bob and enjoy your ride west.

Friday, 7 August 2015


Arrived safely after a nine hour drive. We stopped in Collingwood to visit Wayne and Barb and had a delicious lunch. Thanks Barb. 

Finally about 6:30 pm we pulled into Jack and Annabelle's place and got our camping spot organized. 

Sharon and Doug had supper waiting for us and we enjoyed some family time together.

Our camping spot this morning; perfect.

Today we are off to London and then back here for more party time.

Chat soon. Thanks for stopping by.