A Royal Anniversary

One year ago, I was packing a truck with boxes (too many, some would say), saying goodbye to the big city and moving to my new home in my old hometown. Mikey J and I have never been big on anniversaries, but this seemed like an occasion to celebrate, so we made a day of it, packed a picnic full of goodies from the farmer's market, hopped on our trusty bicyclettes, and headed for one of Hamiton's most prized possessions, the Royal Botantical Gardens.

First stop was the Laking Garden for the famed Peony and Iris Show, and it didn't dissappoint. There were so many different varieties and colours. I've never noticed how sparkly irises were before and did you know that peonies can be two-tone? So beautiful. They had a nice little set up too, with an acoustic band playing and a tent serving food and drinks. Oh, and we saw a mamma tortoise hidden in the shrubbery.

Lilacs are one my most favourite flowers, and I couldn't resist a quick peak just in case some were still hanging on at the Arboretum. We were pleasantly surprised to find a large picnic area here and promptly set up our feast of fine cheese, cured meats, veggies, fig spread, strawberries, and wine (shh.. . don't tell). Afterwards, we found a few lilac bushes still in bloom and I sniffed and whiffed as much of their beautiful scent as I could. I like to get right in there, as you can see by the photos. Haha!

We then made it a royal botantical trilogy and headed on in to the Rock Garden. And we were so glad we did. Situated in a little valley, surrounded by trees, it took me right back to my life in Japan... cool shady pines, trickling water, stone statues. Just lovely. Mikey J was particularly enthralled when we spotted "Bill Murray" the Groundhog.

We were home in time for a rest and mojitos on our patio before heading out to the posh Bistro Parisien where we had one of the best meals we've had in a long time! My three-cheese homemade ravioli just melted in my mouth. It was a perfect day.

I guess we've been in saving mode since we decided to travel to Europe this summer and I've been so busy with Dear Edna that we haven't been able to really get away for a whole day or afford a nice dinner out. Take my advice and make the time. A tiny indulgence never hurt anyone, and rest in particular can really pay off and have you hitting the ground running come Monday morning.

We were camera happy on this trip and took many more pictures than you see here: go to my Picassa picture gallery here to see more.


Michelle from Holley and Gill said...

Sounds like an absolutely dreamy day. Your photos certainly prove it!

Erin said...

Thanks Michelle! It really was. I dont' know how many times we said "this was the perfect day" afterwards. If you're ever in the area, don't miss the RBG and Bistro Parisien.

Carla said...

these pictures are great, edna! and, your picnic sounds tasty - the cheese! yum. i also like your red floppy hat!

Caroline said...

You guys are too cute for words.