Two weekends ago (that is, not this past weekend, but the one before) I went home to Nova Scotia for four days. It’s always nice to go home, but this time there was an actual occasion: this year marks the 250th anniversary/birthday of the house I grew up in. Yes. My parents’ wooden house is (at least) 250 years old. Obviously, this is not usual, but it is especially impressive when you consider that the town it’s build next to burnt down twice.
The house was brought up on a barge from Connecticut in 1763. After the British expelled the Acadians from the Annapolis Valley they wanted to ensure that they couldn’t return, so in addition to burning their homes and fields, they brought Loyalist Americans north to settle the land.
My parents bought the house (which sits on five acres of land) in 1991 and have basically spent all the years since restoring historical details (such as exposing all the beams downstairs) and creating gardens. When I went home, it was to help them host a tour of the house and gardens, in support of the local historical society. I took a bunch of pictures, so I thought I’d share some.
The walled garden is the newest edition and still a work in progress. It was excavated four years ago, at which point the walls were built, and every year since then something as been added. This is the first year that it has been fully planted, so a lot of the ground cover and whatnot hasn’t spread.
There are lots of flower beds and gardens, and a whole fenced in yard where we played as kids, but besides the new walled garden, the other sort of spectacular part of the property is the ravine. When we moved in, and for most of my childhood, it was a wild and overgrown swamp, but in the late nineties my dad had it excavated and turned it into two beautiful big ponds, which are now home to muskrats, many frogs, and a ton of water lilies.
Of course my trip home wasn’t entirely about the house and gardens. My dad took my sister Connie and I to the south shore for lunch one day and, as luck would have it, there was a lovely new-to-me yarn shop. I was very good and didn’t go crazy, but I did walk away with this beauty:
All in all, I’d say it was a pretty excellent trip.