Category Archives: Travel


I’m home and it’s wonderful. My bed has never felt so lovely and being home with my Phil and our pups is wonderful.

Yesterday, after a lazy morning, we met Shannon for breakfast before heading back to the valley! It was so wonderful to see my sister right away and it was a great (although quick) visit!

Then we drove… I think the jet-leg was getting the best of me as I felt sick the whole way home, blah! But we made it!

First stop — to meet my newest niece who made her arrival while I was in Greece! Auntie cuddles are my favorite and I’m looking forward to many more!

Next stop — to see my dad! My mom is still away, so I have to wait till Saturday to see her, 4 weeks is the longest we have ever not seen each other – in my life! I can’t wait. We also got to pick up Jasper & Banff, who were quite excited to see us!

Third stop — the Klassen crew had us for dinner! Excellent!! As I didn’t want to have to cook & was dying to see the Klassen 5. The kids even did an auntie comes home countdown!!! Melt my heart!!

Last stop — home!! Bliss!!! I was in bed by 8, I fell from awake very fast and was grateful for my bed and my snuggly pups!

Today, I felt human again, a great feeling! The sun was shining, I spent the with some of my favorite people and felt content & blessed. Phil and I had dinner at the park and enjoyed an evening walk, and I finished off the night relaxing once again.

Life is good great!





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Home (nearly)!

After 22hrs I arrived in Victoria. 1 early morning, 1 bus ride, 3 uneventful flights, 1 extremely tight connection and no luggage later I was greeted and embraced by my Phil! After 24 days, I was filled with such excitement to get home, and was thrilled when we arrived 20 mins early.

Phil brought me Starbucks – he’s perfect!!

We waited for my bag (which I know was in Toronto) only to watch the last bag be picked up & the belt turned off. The good news, my bag just wanted to extend its vacation & took a pit-stop in Vancouver, so at least we know where it is and hopefully is delivered to our hotel this morning!

To be honest, I didn’t really care (except all my finds are in there) but I was so happy to be home, so happy to be with Phil that I was just content as is!

We decided to stay at the Sidney Pier and will head home today. Europe adventure = success!!

Here’s a pic of my Phil and me at the airport!


I’ll recap about the adventure once I’m settled at home, but have many stories to share!

Until then…..

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Irish you were here!

Our last leg of the trip is upon us, we arrived in Belfast, Northern Ireland last night and leave for home on Sunday. Last night we were all beat from the travel day, so once we found our hotel we found a pub near by for dinner. It was relaxing and exactly what we needed. Today was going to be the start of our Irish adventure.



First stop: breakfast, we found a great place that had Irish breakfast, Katie even had beans with hers. It was a good start to our day and gave us the stamina we needed to start the day. Next we were off to the titanic museum. It was amazing. Titanic was built here in Belfast, so the museum takes you through the whole process of building it, follows the lives of some of the passengers and shares how it sunk, and shows the findings of titanic on the ocean floor. I have always enjoyed the history of titanic, but never experienced it like this. It was an incredible museum. Interesting, the shape and height on the museum is what titanic would have been like in the water – HUGE!





After the museum, we had lunch, wandered around the local shops, I found my last pandora charm for my trip and then it was time for a rest. (We love siestas)

This evening we headed out to Queens University, where Katie is studying. It’s a beautiful campus and it was great to see where she’s been this past year. After the tour, we had dinner at Maggie Mays, and then enjoyed a drink at Lawerys. A great ending to a great day. Tomorrow we are off to see the giants causeway, I’m very excited!





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Barcelona :: Sangria

When you travel to Spain, everyone talks about sangria. Like I said earlier, I’ve not quite acquired the taste of wine, I didn’t have high expectations. The 1st night in Barcelona, we did have a pitcher and I didn’t drink much. After the wine tour it seemed better, and on our last night we decided that we should probably drink sangria and eat tapas.

We stopped at 4 places total – 4litres of sangria and yummy tapas. We laughed, and celebrated our time together and agreed that Barcelona was a successful stop on our Europe adventure.







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Barcelona :: Cooking Class

Monica was responsible for most of our planned activities in Barcelona, as you know, yesterday we did a wine tour, and tonight we attending a cooking class. I have never been to one, so truly had no idea what to expect, but my experience tonight is one of my favourites of the trip.


We arrived at the class and had no idea what it was going to entail, what the kitchen would be like, how big/small the group would be, or any other details. When we arrived we were told that the class would be with 8 people, we were shown into a beautiful kitchen area where we would spend the evening. Starting off the evening right, we were offered wine (which flowed through the entirety of the glass) which is said to be the most important ingredient while cooking!




Once everyone had arrived we made quick introductions and got the cooking underway. We were learning to cook (and later eating) 5 Spanish recipes: Tomato bread, Spanish omelet, soup, Paella, and crema Catalan. We were broken into groups for prep, and then all watched and helped as we cooked. Monica and Katie worked on the Paella, Katie made the tomato bread, and I made he crema Catalan (which is similar to a Creme brûlée… Phil I definitely am in need of a cooking torch!)






As the evening rolled on, and as the wine continued, our friendships with those we were cooking its also changed, from casual acquaintances to friends who we laughed and shared a wonderful evening with. One couple was from Russia, one couple was from Australia, and we even had a local Barcelona guy in the group too, it was a perfect mix!

Chef Candido was fantastic to work with, he was very knowledgable, and shared many tips and tricks. He allowed us to be very hands on with our cooking experience and joined in the fun. He is passionate about cooking, and you can see that in how he conducts the class, how he interacts with each individual and truly makes everyone a part of the class.






Finally, it was time to eat…



After dinner, I was called back into cooking duty to finish off the crema Catalan. This is where it got fun, I was entrusted to use the kitchen torch! (Dad, don’t worry, my hands weren’t even shaking tonight!)




After dessert, we visited and relished in the fabulous evening we had, as much as it would have been fun to stay, learn more recipes, the evening had come to an end. And what an evening it was.


We walked home, laughing, enjoying the warm Barcelona evening, and are now ready for a good sleep. Tomorrow is our last day in the city, who knows what kind of adventures we’ll find next.


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Barcelona, wine tour!

Today was a fabulous day! Monica planned a wine tour for us in Barcelona! I have yet to acquire the taste of wine, but knew it would be fun, and I was so surprised by the experience, it was amazing & we had a lot of fun! The tour was 8 hours long and we went to 3 different winery’s so filled up the day nicely, especially nice, since nothing is open on Sundays.

First we had to travel to our first stop….


Which was the Jean Leon winery.


It is a beautiful winery, it was the smallest of the 3, but unique in that they grow all of their own grapes for the wine on the property. Jean Leon had such an interesting life story, moving to Barcelona with his family when their house burned down, being a stowaway to America and traveling across the states to Hollywood where his luck would change. He met Frank Sinatra who gave him his lucky break and from then he created a famous restaurant that many stars were at through the years, interesting fact, Jean Leon, knew who Marilyn Monroe was with the night she died but was a man of his word in secrets, and never told anyone.

While we were there we tasted the same red wine, unfinished and finished. We compared the color, taste, tears and smell. It was quite interested to be walked through all those little details. It was a great start to our day.

A few pictures from the winery.







The next stop on our tour was Torres Estate Winery. It was much larger – we had to take a train to tour the cellars and the property. It was a little concerning as we got on the train that the 1st question was if we were claustrophobic, not exactly what you expect, but the tunnel you you go through to get to the cellars was quite small and dark, so I guess it was fair. The drove us thought the winery where we saw the crops, cellars and where they process and bottle the wine. After the train tour we wandered through the museum until we arrived at the wine & cheese tasting room? This is where things got to be really fun!

Each table had about 8 people, at the 1st winery, we met a group of 4 ladies who we agreed if we took photos of them, they would for us. Well, when we got to our table we had room and asked them to join our table, and it was a hoot! We had 3 wines to taste, a white, merlot and Cabernet and paired with it was different cheeses, we ,axe would not only to eat what was at our table but as the other people left and had left food behind we did a good thing to clean up those things too! My favourite was the white wine, as well as Katie’s, and Monica preferred the Cabernet.

Here are some photos from stop 2,






Our last stop was Faixenet, which is a Cava winery. Cava, is like a champagne, and only in Spain, and only in this particular area. When we arrived we got to tour the estate and see how cava is made, what the process of it is traditionally, and how machines, and technology has helped along the way. It was a tour that you could easily get lost in, the caves are 20kilomoters of cellars, so it was good to stick with the group. Once the tour was over, we had cava and tapas. Yum! We got to try 2 different cavas, a Burt and a rose Burt, I preferred the rose. It they both were good. Wile we were enjoying our drinks and snacks, we were also enjoying the company of our new friends, we shared a lot of laughs together! It was a perfect day.

The last set of photos from the tour.








When we walked home, we picked up some snacks since dinner in Spain is eaten later, and headed back to the hostel for a rest. We really had a great day, and are looking forward to the rest of our time I’m Barcelona!

Until next time, adiós!

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So long, Greece, we have had a great time!

Greece was…… Amazing! When we started talking about places we would want to visit, I knew Greece was the place for me. To be honest, I never saw myself traveling much, and really up until I booked my flight in February, I never saw myself traveling to Europe for 3 weeks sans Phil, but the traveling adventures of MK2 has been nothing short of wonderful.

I truly enjoyed every part of our trip to Greece (well if I’m honest, I didn’t like how I felt after getting off of the cruise, the world was moving for a long time, but to get to see all the Greek islands, it was worth it). I loved the beautiful buildings, the Acropolis, the food, the frozen yogurt, the markets, the language, the people, I loved it all. The whole city would change from day to night, from when shops were opened and closed, so much different than what it’s like be home.

Last post I just had a ton of pictures, so Ill try and recap some moments over the past week.

Our first stop on the cruise was Mykonos, it was so beautiful, exactly what I expected.
Next we visited Kusadasi, turkey, which showed us an interesting world of bartering and being badgered to come into each and every store. They also have a neat traditional for the 1st customer of the day, you throw your cash on the floor and they pick it up and rub it under their chin for luck of more customers and money (you also get the best deal!)
Then we went to Patmos which is we’re we visited an old monastery and saw where Revelation was written.
Rhodes was all castle like, with walls surrounding the city, we did even get to tour the castle, it was so neat!
In Crete, we enjoyed a fish spa, where we sat with our feet in tanks with fish who basically eat your feet. Our feet were very nice after, and it made for great laughter as we are all incredibly ticklish.
Santorini was so beautiful, in the caldera where the ship parked is where the land just broke off and fell to he ocean floor, but so deep that there is only one place for boats to place an anchor!
It was back to Athens yesterday where we spent one more night at the excellent hostel Athenstyle. Took a tour around the city on the hop-on/hop-off bus which was a perfect way to end the evening.
This morning we had a few hours to kill before heading to the airport, so it only seemed fitting to get one more frozen yogurt, and of course, pick up a special baby gift for my newest chosen niece who arrived just a few hours ago!

We are off to Spain today, and will be there until Wednesday, then it’s off to Ireland. I have 9 more days until I go home, I can’t believe how fast it’s gone, how much fun I am having, and how well I’m doing, I am going to enjoy each and every remaining day, but, I am looking forward to seeing Phil, my new niece, my pups, and my family and friends…. Oh and sleeping in my bed, that will be lovely, but until then, I’ll be seeing if the rain stays mainly on the plane in Spain, and trying my first glass of Guinness in Ireland.

Until next time!






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Europe :: Rome – The Spanish Steps

Our original plan was to head up to Verona today, but since we couldn’t find a good train/bus to get us there and back in time that was worth it, we decided to stay in Rome until our flight Friday. It was a beautiful day (we even wore shorts! Which was ok for the morning but we froze in the afternoon), so we decided to buy another bus pass to be able to get around the city. We first headed back out to Vatican City since we had seen lots of cute cafe’s which are great for breakfast and are we ever glad to have made that decision. As our bus was coming up to St. Peter’s we noticed that there was a large crowd and cheering, then we noticed screens and …. The pope! We didn’t get very close, but we did see him from afar, at St. Peter’s in Vatican City! That is very cool.

After this we found a nice looking breakfast spot, maybe too nice, and the menu had no English. We should have known to run. But we stayed, enjoyed, and then got our bill….. Um 72Euro, oh shoot, not what we expected. So since we used up our food budget for the day, it was good we were full.

Once the shock wore off of breakfast we hopped back on the bus to head to the Spanish Steps, which is another important place to see in Rome. It was quite busy down there, so we opted out of going up them, but instead roamed around the markets. I was excited to find a new charm for my bracelet to represent Rome!

I’d also like to mention that while riding the bus, I’ve realized that there are no road rules in Rome. No parking rules (as seen in the photo), there are no lines on the roads, traffic circles may have 2,3,4,5 lanes of traffic, Vespas and bikes sneak in wherever, buses use the gas full throttle, and the breaks just as hard too (must be careful of whiplash

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