Awww…

I had a lovely chat with my parents tonight about a miriad of things, a conversation which ranged from the Jabberwock (beware!) to art books, via cars and dresses. I do love my parents!

They mentioned that my UK Grandma, recent widow, had sent along her usual Christmas gift o’ cash to them. The sweetest thiing ever is that she included Steve in her largess! The money is, truly, neither here nor there, though much appreciated — it’s that she already thinks of my honey as family.

All together now — awwwww!

Thanks Grandma!

On a related note, I sent out my Christmas cards today. And it’s not even December 22! Yay me. Which reminds me… I need to start collecting mailing addresses for invites. Hard to think I’ll be sending out invites in less than three months. Which reminds me — I need to join my FH in bed, as I do work tomorrow. Which reminds me! He put a moratorium on wedding-speak/read/research etc. until Tuesday. He forgot, however, to include a moratorium on wedding-writing… hee hee!

Something old, something new

Has it been so long since my last post? How sad.

November 11 was Remembrance Day, and we went to the cenotaph on a clear, crisp day to honour our veterans. I realized that this was the day of my own private tradition: remembering my UK grandfather (my dad’s dad) Daniel (Dane) Dunnett as well as all the other fallen (my mum’s dad who I never met, my dad’s friend Alan, Nana, and all the others who have passed on).

Well, when my Grandpa died in early December last year, I didn’t really mourn him. I was sad in an abstract way, sad that I hadn’t know him better, sad that my parents were leaving for England and wouldn’t be back until January… nervous that I’d be spending Christmas with Steve’s family (who I didn’t know barely at all). I wondered that I wasn’t mourning him more, but really wasn’t that fussed about it.

Until November 11. Apparently, my day to remember my Grandpa also was my day to mourn him, because I was in tears from Oh Canada until Reveille. Poor Steve. Poor Grandpa. Poor Grandma.

So, in remembrance:

My Grandpa grew up in Wick, in Northern Scotland. He joined the RAF as a young man and worked as a mechanic on planes. He was stationed for a while in India. The experience of watching other young men fly away in planes he had worked on — and not come back — scarred him so that he didn’t get on a plane again until in his sixties. But he did get on — he was brave, and kind, and teased me about saying “what?” when I was a kid. He married my Grandma, a divorcee with a young son, and loved them very well. He drew little animals in the margins of his letters to us. He was a wonderful Grandpa, even with a continent and a very cold ocean between us.

And on November elevenses, I will think about him and miss him.

And, on a much more weddinglike front, last weekend was the Roberts Creek Craft Fair held, conveniently enough, in the Roberts Creek Community Hall. I went (of course) and even dragged Steve. It was a great opportunity to a) do some pressie shopping, b) take photos of the hall and c) get that darn contract signed! I tracked down, pinned down, and stuck a pen onto, the hall manager and made her sign! Done and done.

I was also very pleased that the hall was prettier and more perfect that I remembered. I hadn’t seen it since last winter, and was actually quite worried it would be cavernous and bare, gloomy and dark, with a tall cavernous bat-infested roof. It is, in reality, not too big, homey and light. Here are photos, though keep in mind there won’t be a craft fair going on in there for the wedding 🙂

This is the hall taken from the stage. I estimate that the pillars are 10 feet apart and 10 feet from the walls, which means the total dimension is approximately 40 x 40. The kitchen annex is over to the right, along with bathrooms. You can clearly see that the ceiling is painted to look like the sky (and not in a cheesy way, either).

This is the hall taken from the front entryway/mudroom. You can see the stage from here! I admit, the sunset is a little cheesy.

This is the kitchen, large and old-fashioned. The cupboards are full of cups and bowls and plates. The plates are mostly nice (but I’ll rent a few so as to not use the truly fugly ones) and the silverware is completely sketchy, so will need renting. There isn’t any glassware at all. Good think the rental place penciled me in!

There is also a little prep/serving room right by the kitchen, though I think we might have the food laid out along the wall by the kitchen to prevent bottlenecks. Here is the serving room:

And here is the outside of the hall. The kitchen annex is on the left. Isn’t it sweet? Sweet, fun and wonderfully rural.

That same day, we took a walk down onto the pier and the gazebo. It was a stunning day, bright and sparkly, with a chill in the air that warmed the soul. Aren’t Steve & Angel cute?



Then we went down to Secret Beach. Usually Secret Beach has the loveliest rocks, but the tide was high and the pickings were slim. Fortunately, Monday’s walk at Snickett Park in Sechelt was more productive. Mmmmm… rocks. Lest you think these are the ravings of a madwoman, as opposed to wedding related — rocks are figuring in the decor. So there.

“Still life: table with rocks”

Rememberings.

So. I forgot to mention, we had an anniversary. October 21, 2006 was the one-year anniversary of the night we first met, and since we were/are one of those ‘love at first sight’ couples, it marks the beginning of our relationship as well.

Oh… actually, I did mention it. A few posts ago. What I didn’t mention was all the anniversaries that have followed in the past few weeks: the anniversary of our first kiss, of my first trip to the Coast, of Steve’s friend Hahle’s death on October 31, 2005 (shocking and very sad, and left me, the new girlfriend, with exactly no idea of what to say), and of course, the anniversary of my first evening at our friend Diana’s house.

Friday nights, Steve and an assortment of other musicians go over to Di’s oceanfront cottage and play Celtic music (mostly). Di has a grand and beautiful harp, Steve plays mandolin, and various people play various other things. It is an amazing thing to be able be able to attend, as a non-musician, and I still feel honoured every time I go. Even though their close friend Hahle had just just passed away, Diana still said ‘yes’ when Steve asked if his new girlfriend could come and listen for a night. It was generous and warm and I am very grateful — especially to have been invited back. Diana’s on Friday nights is our standing appointment, and this past Friday was the one year of it.

I remember standing up to go, all nervous and what do I say — um, thanks? for the most amazing live concert I’ve ever heard? in your living room? — and Barbara Lee telling Steve “we like this one. Don’t fuck it up.” Which, of course, completely broke the awkwardness and there were laughs and hugs all round, and “come back next time you’re in town.” Which I did.

Thank you Diana. If I haven’t said so before.

Here is a picture of Dutton’s (including Diana and her harp oh wait! and Steve!) which I stole shamelessly from the ‘Music in the Landing 2004’ website. Hee hee. Incidentally, the gazebo they (Dutton’s) are playing in is the one we are having the wedding in, and in fact, it was the Dutton’s Music in the Landing performance in that very gazebo in 2006 that gave me the idea of having it there in the first place!

Here is another (stolen) photo of Steve, Susann and Laurel:

In other news, I ordered fabric swatches from ariadress.com. They are shantung silk in #1 white, #4 scarlet, #15 dark red, #16 brown, #71 petal, #47 peony and #42 leaf. I want a colour that won’t clash with whatever colour of flowers comes out of the ground at wedding-time; if the bloomers are orange, pink, red, white — whatever, I don’t want major clashing. Fortunately, I like orange and red and pink and red together just fine, so they all should pretty much work. I was thinking, though, that the dark brown is most likely to not clash, plus it’s kind of neutral so it will suit everyone, plus it is quite fashionable now, so the re-wearability factor is high.

These are the colours:





This is the brown:

I’m guessing it would surprise no-one to find out this colour is called ‘espresso’ — I do like my coffee!

I’ve left messages for the hall-lady in order to give her the contract and deposit, but I haven’t heard back yet. This doesn’t really surprise me as it took almost a month to get the contract in the first place. Oh well — Creek time.

My good friend Andie is an awesome artist, and I think I may have suckered — I mean ‘convinced’ — her into taking photos during the ceremony and a few posed shots afterwards. When I asked her if she’d mind, she got all enthusiastic and suggested renting a digital SLR camera! Fortunately, Steve has one of those and a) doesn’t mind her using it (use it, please!) and b) will even show her all about how to use it. I’m excited, as I think Andie has a real photojournalist/artistic eye and marvelous sense of composition. Thanks, Andie!

Speaking of art, my darling FH (future husband, per Indiebride lingo) ruined his own Christmas present today. I had found a set of new pastels (the kind he likes) on eBay. I told him the bidding went too high, but I actually bought them and had them sent here. In a shocking turn of events, they were delivered (along with a book I bought) right to our mailbox and he picked them up (literally and figureatively). Having used pastels oh about a million times, he recognized right away what they were. He called me to ask if he could open the packages — what packages? I asked all innocent. He mentioned that one felt like pastels. I told him not to fondle anything else! and my co-workers were VERY curious about what I was talking about 🙂 Silly man. He ended up just buying the pastels so that I could get him a proper surprise.

Where can I find coal on the Sunshine Coast?

Well, he took this sunset photo yesterday, so I guess he deserves a present:

(I stole it shamelessly from his blog. Thanks, Steve!)