MarySmith’sPlace – Canadian birthday bash

I’m just back from my first ever trip to Canada with souvenirs, photos, lots of memories – and about 20 new family members I’d never met before. Obviously, I didn’t bring them home with the souvenirs, but I hope they will visit me in Scotland so I can repay some of the hospitality they showed me.

Grandmas 90th-0058 (Small)

I won’t name them all, but this is a huge chunk of my newly met Canadian family.

My Aunt May’s 90th birthday was the catalyst for making the trip. My dad’s sister, she went to Canada before I was born but we met whenever she came ‘home’. She usually came over on her own and I never met my cousins. When they did visit Scotland I was away from home.

My aunt kept in touch, usually by phone, and when she had a stroke my cousin, Grace emailed to let me know and she and I continued to correspond. As my aunt recovered, she resumed her phone calls. Once, I was asking questions about family and she said: “You’d better come over here so we can talk properly!” Then, my cousin reminded me it was her mum’s 90th birthday and so I booked my flight.

I was to be the big surprise at my aunt’s birthday party. Grace had been planning a dinner at home but when she realised how many were coming wisely decided to book a room in a restaurant. I admit I was feeling pretty nervous as we drove there. My cousin Grace and I had been blethering like old friends since I arrived – but would meeting everyone else be the same?

Grandmas 90th-0007 (Small)

I think the big reveal was a big success

Grandmas 90th-0009 (Small)


Grandmas 90th-0040 (Small)

Happy birthday, Aunt May

I’ll do some more Canadian pics next time – this post is just for me and Aunt May!

53 thoughts on “MarySmith’sPlace – Canadian birthday bash

  1. Mary, what a great adventure to Canada. It must have been a treat for you all to meet up. Best wishes to your aunt on her ninetieth birthday. I imagine you collected lots of intriguing stories during your Canadian adventure. Welcome back!

    Liked by 1 person

    • I was worried the surprise might have an unfortunate consequences, especially as she’d had a massive stroke at the end of 2016. Should have realised that if she could fight back from that, she could cope with anything!


    • Thanks, Pete. I do enjoy looking at the photo of when she first saw me. Lovely to know someone was so happy to see me! I’m very glad someone had arranged for a photographer for the day as I didn’t manage to take a single picture at the party.

      Liked by 1 person

    • It was wonderful, Robbie. Some of the cousins, spouses and children had to go home after the part but some stayed on in Vancouver and we had a great time. It felt like we’d known each other forever.

      Liked by 1 person

    • A treaure trove of memories is exactly right, Tina. It was wonderful to be there for the big occasion and to see the surprise and delight on my aunt’s face is something I’ll never forget. Thanks so much for dropping by.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Welcome back, Mary! And OH, what a great post! How lovely to see your family, and to share in your aunt’s happy surprise when you appeared. She looks so delighted, and honestly, I teared up a bit, seeing what joy your visit brought her. (And you.) To think you were nervous! I’m so glad you finally met this part of your family and hope you are able to enjoy them ALL for a long time to come. Thanks for sharing such a warm and loving moment with us. And I’m looking forward to more pictures! 😀 ❤

    Liked by 1 person

    • Good to be back, Marcia. So pleased you enjoyed the post. It was quite emotional. It was also a bit odd to have the moment witnessed by so many people I hadn’t yet met – and now we’re family.


    • I did have a great time, Hugh, and, yes, I am now over the jet lag. I thought I’d escaped it when I first came home. The sun was shining so I went mad in the garden then two days in I was poleaxed. That’ll teach me to be smug!

      Liked by 1 person

  3. How wonderful Mary so glad you had the opportunity to go to Canada to see your Aunt and cousins. I have relatives in Australia and Malaysia and the last time I went to that part of the world was many years ago I would love to go back one day.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks, Marje. I’d been thinking about it and putting it off for years and when my cousin said said my aunt would be 90 it seemd the perfect opportunity to actually do it. I’m so glad I did. I’d love to go to Malaysia (less so Australia) one day. I need to wn the lottery and spend the next few years travelling the world.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Pingback: Smorgasbord Posts from Your Archives – #Potluck – MarySmithsPlace – Canada (part 3) | Smorgasbord Blog Magazine

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