Wednesday, 17 June 2015

The Edible Island

Our local beach, 'Lakeside'.
It's mid June and Chris and I are all settled in Prince Edward Island. PEI is on Canada's Atlantic coast and it is our country's smallest province. It is a beautiful place filled with the colours of the seaside. The houses are pastel pink and stormy sky blue, butter yellow and ocean water teal. It seems to us like a calm and happy place, and we are happy to be here.

We don't miss the city. It's funny how a place you call home for so long can slowly become the wrong spot for you. Toronto was where I spent my youth. A great wild city, a place that seemed to supply endless adventure. It was exactly what I needed when I was 25. But what do I need now? That's maybe a bit harder to define, but I feel like it has something to do with space and quiet, with nature. I like being able to go for a walk in the forest. When I wander over to the library (to get some internet access for blogging) I walk down a pebbled road and it smells like grass and I don't pass many people. That seems good, at least for now. 

This spring's wild apple blossoms.
And the quiet isn't dull or passive. It's inspiring! We are living in a small town (of approximately 300 people) that is surrounded by the beauty of wild things. There are lilac bushes the size of houses, fields of dandelions, grassy roadways, tall pine trees and wild fruit blossoms. We've been out hiking and camping every time we have so much as one day off together. We've also been foraging. It seems to us that everything here is edible. (Maybe a symptom of living in a concrete city?) The trail we walk offers up some new 'food' each time we're out. I've borrowed a few books on edible plants from the local library and have started gathering flowers and leaves for tea making, candy making and baking. We arrived on the island just in time for Chris to harvest this spring's spruce tips and at the restaurant they've made pickled spruce tips and spruce salt. It's funny to a couple of city people, but fresh/local isn't a 'movement' here, it's the standard and the way of life. 

Stretch of the confederation trail that runs near our house.
We came to PEI with the goal of working at a restaurant together, Chris in the back of house as a cook, and myself in the front of house as a server. This summer we'll spend four months (June-Sept) working at a lovely inn by the seaside. And of course, in addition to that, I'll be taking on new baking, canning, and crafting projects, and sharing it all on the blog. I'm so excited about my new surroundings and I expect that will be pretty evident. The first post that I've prepared here is my experience making salt water taffy- with real salt water, from the ocean! I can't wait to share many more crafts and canning ideas that are born of this summer season and simpler lifestyle. Country life is going to be beautiful!

I wrote this post to serve as a little introduction to the season of blog posts to follow. I hope you'll watch the 11th for lots of crafting, candy making and canning ideas! I'm just so ridiculously excited to be here and to be making stuff! (Startin' with taffy!) Yay summer!

Foraging fun! Canning and candy making with wild flowers coming soon on the blog!
Hiking at the Bay of Fundy National Park.
Chris and I took a week to drive out to the coast. We camped all along the way, visiting our old favourite vacation spot, Prince Edward County, the wine country north of Toronto, staying on the banks of the St. Lawrence in Quebec, and hiking the Bay of Fundy in New Brunswick. It was such a good time. Lots of campfires and campfire cooking! Here are a few photos from that week.

Out walking and exploring in northeastern Quebec.
Lunch at the County Cider Co; morning tea at Sandbanks provincial park; camping; hiking Bay of Fundy.
Thanks for reading!

2 comments:

  1. I will check in from time to time as you and PEI merge. 'glad to have crossed paths at the Inn.

    ReplyDelete
  2. I will check in from time to time as you and PEI merge. 'glad to have crossed paths at the Inn.

    ReplyDelete