Thursday, May 30, 2013


Hello & welcome
Today I am going through some old Family photographs trying to identify the subjects. This selection of photos are from my Mother's family and most are simply marked Arthur Family. 

I know the shot below is of my Great Grandparents.

This photo is marked Arthur Twins but as with many of them I need to gather more information on their first names and who their parents are. Don't you just love the furniture!

I love the dress's and beautiful hats of the Era. 

Now I have the time in my Retirement to go through the many boxes of Family photos and letters and try to get our Family tree started. It also reminds me to put names on all of our photos so our children have the information in the future.
I hope you enjoyed a glimpse into my Family tree.



Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Hatley Castle Visit in April 2013

Welcome Dear Bloggers! This year on our vacation to Victoria we visited Hatley Castle once again as we love the architecture of the castle. I hope you enjoy another visit there with me as well. 

The leaded glass in the windows is so lovely...

My how I love pink & white tulips!

Check out the carving in the stone walls!

On the grounds of Hatley Park and Royal Roads University in Victoria, Vancouver Island, BC

The Castle was completed in 1908. From 1941 until 1943 when Grant Block was completed, the Castle served as dormitory and mess hall for cadets and staff officers at Royal Roads Military College. It is now the administrative centre of Royal Roads University. It houses the President, Vice-President, the Managers of Finance and Facilities, and the administrative support staff for Royal Roads University.
James Dunsmuir commissioned Samuel Maclure, a Victorian architect, to design the “Castle”, and Messrs. Brett and Hall, landscape artists of Boston, Massachusetts, to plan the gardens and surroundings. Local stone, trimmed by Valdez and Saturna Island sandstone was used in the building’s construction. Its impressive exterior is matched only by the lavishness of the interior appointments; oak and rosewood panelled rooms, baronial fireplace, teak floors, and specially made lighting fixtures. James is quoted as saying: “Money doesn’t matter, just build what I want.”
The building is 200 feet long and 86 feet wide; the turret is 82 feet high. The wall surrounding the estate, also built of local stone, cost over $75,000; the Conservatory, costing a like amount, was at one time filled with white orchids imported from India; a large banana tree grew in the centre under the dome. The rooms of the house were filled with flowers from the Conservatory throughout the year. Ten kilometres of road interlaced the estate, and a hundred men were employed in the gardens. There were a number of other buildings on the estate to provide for the needs of the large household, but many of these have now been demolished: the vast refrigeration plant; the cow stables; the slaughter house and smoke house; the three silos, each of 100 ton capacity; the reserve water tank to the south of Belmont Drive; the old stable near the bridge to the east of the present fields; to say nothing of the Chinatown to accommodate 80 to 120 gardeners. There remain, however, the model dairy and the stables, which were of solid brick and concrete construction. The “Castle” was completed in 1908, and the Dunsmuir family took up residence in that year.
Early in 1910, James sold his collieries, his coal rights in the Esquimalt and Nanaimo Railway belt, and all his business connections therewith to Messrs. MacKenzie and Mann, railway promoters for $11,000,000. He thus separated himself from all former business with which the name of Dunsmuir had been associated. He then retired to enjoy his beautiful home, his yacht “Dolaura”, his shooting, fishing, golf, etc. He died in May 1920, at the age of 69. His wife, formerly Laura Surles of North Carolina, lived on at Hatley Park with her daughter Eleanor until she died in August, 1937. Eleanor died six months later.
For the next three years, the estate was left in the hands of a caretaker. In November 1940, it was purchased by the Dominion Government for $75,000 to begin its career as a Naval Training Establishment. No time was lost. On 13 December 1940 HMCS Royal Roads was commissioned as an Officer Training Establishment for short-term probationary RCNVR sub-lieutenants and operated as such until October 1942.
During this time, some 600 volunteer reserve officers underwent training. Then, on 21 October 1942, the training of regular force naval cadets was re-established in Canada, and the spirit of the old Royal Naval College of Canada was reborn with the establishment of the Royal Canadian Naval College at Royal Roads.
After a brief history of five years, the Royal Canadian Naval College became, in 1947, the RCN-RCAF Joint Services College. The following year, with the admission of army cadets, Royal Roads became the tri-service College known as the Canadian Services College Royal Roads. In 1968, the name of the College was changed to Royal Roads Military College.
The College continued as a two year feeder College for the Royal Military College and College Militaire Royal de Saint Jean until 1975. On 25 June 1975 the Royal Roads Military College Degree Act was passed allowing the granting of degrees. The first class graduated from Royal Roads in May of 1977. The first class of postgraduate students graduated in the fall of 1989.
On 22 February 1994, it was announced that Royal Roads Military College would close in the following year. Due to public support, the Province of British Columbia entered negotiations with the federal government of Canada to lease the property and facilities in order to continue its use as a university. Royal Roads University was created on 21 June 1995 by an act of the Legislative Assembly of the Province of British Columbia. On 31 August 1995 Royal Roads Military College ceased to exist and the facilities were turned over to Royal Roads University on 1 September 1995.
I hope you enjoyed your visit today! Thank you for your comments.

Saturday, May 11, 2013

Remembering On Mother's Day....

Happy Mother's Day! Today I am remembering my Mother and Grandmother's as we celebrate Mother's Day.
The photo above is my Mother at 18 years of age. Below was taken at 70 years of age. 
This is the first Mother's Day we will celebrate since she passed away so it will be filled with memories of wonderful times spent together.

My Grandmother Laura below with my Mother and Aunt taken in 1934.

Great Grandmother Agnes with Grandmother Laura and her siblings.

Great Grandmother Flora below

Step Grandmother Anne with my Grandfather Andy.

I hope you have a wonderful Mother's Day with your loved ones!



Saturday, May 4, 2013

Butchart Gardens April 2013

Thank you for stopping in again to visit. I am sharing with you our Vacation to Victoria, British Columbia, Canada. 
We try and visit Butchart Gardens every time we visit Victoria in the Winter or Spring as it is so beautiful.
Our Winters in Saskatchewan, Canada are long and we seem to need a little cheering up by February so we head to Canada's West Coast for some energizing.
At the end of my post I have added the details of Butchart Gardens so I hope you enjoy our photos as well. 

My Sister In Law & I below as we wonder along the many paths in the gardens. Take care!



Butchart Gardens is located in British Columbia
Location of Butchart Gardens in British Columbia
Entrance to the Butchart Gardens
Robert Pim Butchart (1856–1943) began manufacturing Portland cement in 1888 near his birthplace of Owen SoundOntarioCanada. He and his wifeJennie Butchart (1866–1950) came to the west coast of Canada because of rich limestone deposits necessary for cement production.
The Ross Fountain
In 1904, they established their home near his quarry on Tod Inlet at the base of theSaanich Peninsula on Vancouver Island. [2]
In 1907, 65 year old garden designer Isaburo Kishida of Yokohama came to Victoria, at the request of his son, to build a tea garden for Esquimalt Gorge Park. This garden was wildly popular and a place to be seen. Several prominent citizens, Jennie Butchart among them, commissioned Japanese gardens from Kishida for their estates. He returned to Japan in 1912.
In 1909, when the limestone quarry was exhausted, Jennie set about turning it into the Sunken Garden, which was completed in 1921. They named their home "Benvenuto" ("welcome" in Italian), and began to receive visitors to their gardens. In 1926, they replaced their tennis courts with an Italian garden and in 1929 they replaced their kitchen vegetable garden with a large rose garden to the design of Butler Sturtevant of Seattle.Samuel Maclure, who was consultant to the Butchart Gardens, reflected the aesthetic of the English Arts and Crafts Movement.
In 1939, the Butcharts gave the Gardens to their grandson Ian Ross (1918–1997) on his 21st birthday. Ross was involved in the operation and promotion of the gardens until his death 58 years later.
In 1953, miles of underground wiring was laid to provide night illumination, to mark the 50th anniversary of The Gardens. In 1964, the ever-changing Ross Fountain was installed in the lower reservoir to celebrate the 60th anniversary. In 1994, the Canadian Heraldic Authority granted a coat of arms to the Butchart Gardens. In 2004, two 30-foot (9.1 m) totem poles were installed to mark the 100th anniversary, and The Gardens were designated as a national historic site.
Ownership of The Gardens remains within the Butchart family; the owner and managing director since 2001 is the Butcharts' great-granddaughter Robin-Lee Clarke. [3]
The representation of the Butchart Gardens at the Canada exhibit at Epcot Centre in Orlando
In 1982 the Butchart Gardens was used as the inspiration for the gardens at the Canadian pavilion opened at Epcot Centre in Orlando Florida.
In December, 2009 the Children's Pavilion and the Rose Carousel were opened. The menagerie includes thirty animals ranging from bears, to horses, to ostriches, to zebras and mirrors the world from which The Gardens draws its visitors. The designs were hand picked by the owner, in consultation with an artist from North Carolina. The carvings were done by some of the few remaining carvers of carousel art. Each animal is carved from basswood and took many months to complete.