Between getting ready for my son’s 19th birthday this past weekend and the holidays coming up all reminded me of some of the Christmas traditions we have carried on with our kids . These traditions include getting a live Christmas tree, putting out the Nativity set, going to Christmas Eve service at church, reading the Christmas story on Christmas Eve with family, opening 1 present on Christmas Eve, and eating breakfast before we open gifts on Christmas morning . The best tradition we love is making “White Gold” aka homemade ice cream!
This past weekend was the Dorchester Sandpiper Festival. I enticed the family to go in hopes of seeing some sandpipers but also wanted to find a new farm I discovered in Aulac that just started selling homemade ice cream. I think they came along for the ice cream more than the birds :). I always forget how quick it is to get to Dorchester on the highway and what a quaint town it is with all its historic properties. We went all the way to Johnson’s Mills Nature Conservancy Site first to see if there were any sandpipers visiting. This is a popular spot for them to feed on their way from the Arctic to South America. We were there at high tide which is usually when the birds are in roosting but the interpreters informed us there were peregrine falcons in the area scaring them away. We actually did see 1 or 2 falcons flying in the bay and then saw 2 or 3 flying over the site when we were driving away as well. We only saw a very small band of sandpipers out on the bay but have been there in the past when there were thousands on the beach. You just never know what you’ll see on a certain day. Another spot we love to find them is at Mary’s Point near our cottage. Here are a couple photos from 2011 when we visited and saw lots of birds. Photo credit to Mark Nicolle
In Dorchester, we stopped for a minute to check out Shepody House which is one of the new homes for Parkindale Productions to host live musical events and it is available to for events and weddings. There was a band tuning up getting ready to play as part of the Festival. I loved the view from there and the school house lights inside! Then we had to stop at the old Bell Inn- Mark took me here for supper when I was going to Mt A our 1st year of dating. I guess I had better memories of the meal than he did ( probably because he was paying :)). It is now host to a sewing and quilt shop called “natshi designs” who are hoping to be able to open a cafe as well on site.
We made it just in time to see the Dorchester Art Society’s 2nd art exhibit as they were packing up. So many people displaying their beautiful creations. We stopped and talked to Donna Sullivan from Sackville about her art and her inspiration for painting. She says she had always dabbled in the arts but didn’t get serious with it until she retired. I just loved her work using different mediums! Here is her gallery wall set up:
We next headed down the highway in search of ice cream in Aulac at Trueman Blueberry Farms. They are more than just blueberries!! They have introduced homemade ice cream this summer and their raspberries are at their prime this week for their 2nd year of picking. They also sell honey, blueberries, fresh bread and I see a u-pick pumpkin patch on their sign. They are gearing up for a sunflower maze and a Great Bee Escape adventure course later this summer. I love seeing family farms getting involved in these great endeavours and seeing a dream realized. We will be back for more! I have a dream of growing pumpkins but I don’t think the weather in Waterside will allow that!
A true Killam- spoon ready to try that ice cream!
Since we were in the neighbourhood and had just bought a National Park Discovery Pass, we stopped in to Fort Beausejour-Fort Cumberland. Mark always jokes that our families could have fought on this land may years ago. Glad we get along now :). We only had 5 min to breeze through the exhibit but had fun exploring the site outdoors and taking some pictures. They have tents set up inside the Fort that you can book for an overnight stay! The kids were so little last time we visited here! It is another place we have to come back and visit. Only a 30-40 min drive from home. Lots of treasures to be discovered in our own province! Here are a couple photos from 2010 and then from this weekend! My how some kids have changed 🙂
We hope you enjoyed this trip and that it inspires you to explore some of the beauty around you!
Here is one last photo for you to see if you can find the sandpiper 🙂
P.S. You should now be able to click on a photo to look at it in larger format.