June 5, 2009

The incredible joy of time spent with family

What an amazing past few days I’ve just had. Busy, but sublime. Memorable and deeply rejuvenating. My parents flew in on the 28th (of May) and visited for about a week with my husband and I (it’s the first time we’ve been able to get together in almost two and a half years). Though we spent each day with one another, filling the hours with sightseeing, home-cooked meals around the table, and many wonderful conversations, it feels as though their trip passed in the instantaneous blink of an eye. It seems no sooner was I hugging my mom and step-dad hello, then I was fighting back the tears as I embraced them good-bye.

I come from a small, broken (as in my biological parents divorced) family, and my relatives all live on the other side of the country, so time spent together is a rare and precious gift.

There are many daily stresses in my life, worries and concerns, those sorts of nagging thoughts that keep you up in the wee hours on the night sometimes, yet for a few brief days, in the light of my mother’s timeless smile I was able to sweep them out of my mind and reconnect with the simple act of having carefree fun and being in the presence of loved ones. During their visit my health held up surprising well and we were able to visit a number of interesting destinations around Toronto such as Black Creek Pioneer Village, the CN Tower, and Centreville Island, each of which I’d never been to before. Though they were technically the ones on vacation, it felt as though they were giving my husband and I a holiday as well.

{Darling husband and I on the ferry to Centreville Island. Despite the cheery sunshine there was a bitingly cold wind that was turning our cheeks and noses pink. Still it was so enjoyable to be on a ferry for the first time since I was 14!}

{Here hubby and I gaze out at downtown Toronto and the CN Tower from the shores of Centreville Island.}

{In this shot I'm admiring a lovely doll house that was on display in the foyer of the welcome centre at Black Creek Pioneer Village. Though this was a modern doll house, it was somewhat done up to resemble the Victorian homes that dot this charming historical site.}

{And here we have the back of my head ;D Or to be more detailed, a shot of me gazing out from the observation deck of the CN Tower as I scan the city looking for our apartment.}

{The little redhead on the left is me, the stunning blond in the middle is my mother, and the chap at the end is a statue of Canadian pianist Glenn Gould. This bench is located in downtown Toronto near the CBC building.}

{My mom was snapping photos of my cat, Stella, on our bed, and decided to turn the lens on me when Stella jumped off. This picture was taken on the afternoon of the last day of my parents trip. I can see a bit of fatigue in my face, but there is something about this shot - despite the dusty soles of my bare feet - that I genuinely like, which is a very rare thing for me to say regarding photos of myself.}

{All of the photos above were taken by either my mom or my step-dad during late May and early June 2009. I cherish them and the many others now saved on my hard drive. Thank you both for taking just as many family snaps these days as when I was a youngster. The memories they preserve are utterly priceless.}

Only time will tell when the four of us will be able to get together once more, but even without an exact date, I’m already counting down the days. Cherished relatives are too dear, too important, and too vital to not want to spend time with.

I’m afraid that the all this recent activity caught up with me yesterday though and now I’m a bit run down. That doesn’t matter though, I’m still abuzz with the wonderful feelings these past few days have filled my soul with, my head too full of bliss to mind if my body needs a while to recoup.

Tonight in the wee AM hours I’ve been responding to the awesome comments that have recently been left here, and have begun to catch up (slowly) on about two weeks worth of blog feeds. I hope that you are each well and would love to know how you’ve spent your days lately and what elements have been bringing joy into your lives.


  1. Sounds like it was an absolutely wonderful visit :)

  2. Hi there, thanks for your comments :). Hey that was so good to catch up with your folks. Lovely post, hope you feel better real soon.

    I adore your red hair, you pretty thing ... you'll love my latest post (Red). xxoo

  3. Great post (and photos). You are stunning, if I may say! I'm likely moving to the GTA this fall, so I have some good ideas about where to go with my folks when they come to visit! Have a lovely day!

  4. you have the most beautiful hair. you look like a movie star :-)

  5. It sounds like you had a fabulous family visit; that makes me happy for you!
    BTW, please buy a small thumb drive or memory stick...not sure what they are called...or even an external hard drive and copy your precious photos on that as well. You do NOT want to lose them if something should happen to your computer hard drive.
    You have beautiful hair and are a beautiful girl; your husband is a fortunate man as you are a fortunate woman.
    God's blessings on you, yours and the work of your hands and heart.

  6. Jessica, thank you for the comment on Oolala! I appreciate so much people checking my blog out, as well as checking other vintage blogs out! I know what you mean about family providing a reprieve from toils. I am looking for a job right now and it can be depressing, but as soon as I'm around my sister I feel so loved and accepted. I forget about long term goals and financial issues. Anyway, thanks again for the comment and I look forward to following your blog!

  7. Jessica,

    Thank you for visiting my blog! Now I'll be enjoying yours! So glad you had a nice visit with your folks. It's so hard being far way.


  8. Jessica,

    Glad your back! I've missed you in the blog-osphere! I'm so happy to hear how lovely time with your family was!

    You are such a beauty! I'm in love with your red hair! You should be Lucille Ball for Halloween- I'm picturing it already :-)

    xoxo Hope you're having a lovely weekend and giving your body some rest!

  9. These are such lovely photos! I'm glad you could have that precious time with your family.

  10. Good morning everyone, thank you so much for your wonderful comments!

    @ Halloween spirit, thank you, we absolutely did! None of us could believe we let so much time past between visits!

    @ Moonspinner, thank you very much, sweet soul! (I do indeed love your red themed post!)

    @ Ladyfoxandhound, thank you so much! You're so kind! I'm a GTA transplant (from B.C.) myself, but I've been here for over three years now and have gotten to know parts of it decently well. If I can ever be of (GTA related) service, don't hesitate to contact me.

    @ Jessica, oh my goodness, thank you! That's too nice of you to say. I'll be blushing all day now - again, thank you! :)

    @ Thistle Cove Farm, thank you, honey! You're definitely right about having a secondary backup system. As they're from her camera, my mom has all the photos taken during her visit on her computer too, but I've been uploading some of them to Photobucket and will also be backing them up as well. Thank you for the beautiful blessing, may your own life shine with joy and serenity, too!

    @ K, my pleasure, dear. Thank you in turn for your lovely comment. I wish you the absolute best of luck with your job search (fingers firmly crossed!).

    @ The Pink Rose Cottage, thank you very much. I love your blog, too! :)

    @ MissRedLips, thank you deeply, sweet heart! I really missed bopping around the blogsphere!(Seriously at one point I hadn't turned on my laptop for three days and I remarked to DH that I was getting blog feed withdrawl :D). Love the idea of going as Lucy (believe it or not I never thought of that before), thank you!!

    @ in company with sparkles, thank you very much, my dear. I'm truly glad that we had a week together too. It was really what I needed to recharge my soul.

    I want to thank each of you very, very much for your sweet and caring comments, they each mean a great deal to me, especially because this was the first time I've ever posted photos of myself online (not just on this blog, but on the entire web!), and was quite shy to do so. Your touching words have helped encourage me to definitely do so again.

    May you each have an awesome Sunday,
    ♥ Jessica

  11. Hi! I found you through Marie's postcard blog and I'm so glad I did, how fabulous are you?! The pictures are great, that was a very special time for everyone I bet!

  12. Great post and such a fun blog! I too love vintage and am so glad to have stumbled on your blog! I agree, your pics are great--and the one on the bed that your Mom took is striking. My Mom and Dad instilled a pure love of vintage in my heart--my Mom had an antique store called Pollyanna's--she passed in February and my heart is just broken. Anyhow--I am glad to have found a kindred spirit here,. If you would like to see some of her vintage loves, check out my Dad's auctions in my sidebar under "Pollyanna's".

  13. @ Maggi, aren't you just the sweetest! Thank you so much for your wonderfully kind words. I'm so glad you stumbled across my blog, because now I've been introduced to your own marvelous site as well! Thanks again, honey, it's lovely to meet you :)

    @ Tutta la Storia, grazie mille! :) You're very kind, thank you so much for the lovely comment and for sharing about your own love of vintage with me. I'm very sorry to hear about your mother's passing. It's beautiful though that through your parents you developed a passion for the past.

    Many thanks again to you both for your beautiful words, I hope that you each have an excellent week!
    ♥ Jessica

  14. of course i missed this post and now i found it and can i say wow you are gorgeous girly! great photos and yay for fun times with those you love! always the best!

  15. @ Elena, thank you deeply, sweet heart! I actually thought of you while I was posting these photos, because I've long been inspired by how - to me, a ridiculously shy and self-conscious person - awesome it is you're A-ok with sharing so many gorgeous self-portraits/photos of yourself with the world. This post was the first time I'd ever put my photo online and I had to swallow nearly 25 years of hangups and fears to do so ;) I'm glad I did though! And am sure I'll post other pics with me in them in the future.

    Many hugs & thanks, dear friend,
    ♥ Jessica

  16. You are so cute. Always nice to put a face to a name! And your bed looks sooo comfortable. I want to nap!