Monday, August 28, 2023

Bigass Weekend Wrap-Up: Powell River Road Trip; Family and Fun (and Some Shopping)

Welcome back, my friends! L and I did our annual August road trip to the tiny town on the Sunshine Coast, Powell River. We last visited L's mom and brother there last December (here), and were there this time in late August 2022 (here), if you wish to compare the pictures/weather.
L and I getting gas before we head up-Island. I have oodles of pics and goodies to share with you (PR has excellent second-hand shops), so grab a drink and a snuggly blanket and settle in, Gentle Readers. 

Powell River is so much more casual than Victoria, so I wore very simple outfits while I was there. I traveled both ways in this outfit, with a different t-shirt on the trip home (no pic of that). 

  • Cardigan - Halogen, thrifted; first seen here in April with a matchy blue dress
  • T-shirt - Mountain Goats tour, Portland, Oregon, 2019, not tracked 
  • Jeans - Wilfred, consignment; last worn here (3rd outfit) for a Winesday back in March
  • Sneakers - Adidas Superstars, thrifted; purchased here for $24.95

The weather was up in the high-20s all weekend, with wildfire haze the entire time. 
This outfit is for being comfy sitting in the car for 3+ hours, followed by sitting on a ferry for 1.5 hours. 

I also wore it out for dinner that night, with our pal Kelly.
L getting ready. We're light packers - we each had one knapsack. 

Light layers in case it was hot. 
It was. I sweated in everything, and it's all in the wash. 

The cardigan is linen and was both good sunblock and the right level of warm in our chilly AC'd hotel room. 

A functional purse and a scarf I barely wore.

  • Purse - Danier, thrifted
  • Scarf - Fluevog

I'd planned on using the scarf to keep my hair tidy when the top was down on the convertible, but we only drove around briefly in PR. I tied it to the purse for extra snazziness.

The stuff: 
I knew I was taking a risk by wearing these for an entire weekend right away, but I put insoles in and carried Band-Aids, just in case. I walked and shopped for hours in these, and they were excellent. Hooray! 

  • Belt - B-Low, thrifted
  • Steel/stone cuff - Maltese, vintage 70s, vintage mall
  • Big cuff - consignment
  • Silver/amber ring - consignment
  • Smoky topaz/silver ring - Anneli Neumann, Sweden, vintage mall
  • Silver/amethyst ring - vintage mall
  • Silver earrings - consignment, Israeli

Someone not shouting "Hooray" - he is not happy about us leaving. 
"What about MEEEEEEEEEE...."

Cat and Ross took care of him while we were away - we did Mabel-care earlier last week for them while they did a day-trip. 

Off we go! If you're not aware, I love on Vancouver Island off the west coast of Canada - it's a massive island, with more cities than just Victoria (where I'm from/we live), and it takes a long time to get anywhere. L is from Powell River on the mainland of BC, an area called the Sunshine Coast. 
It's August, peak tourist season on the Island for both locals and visitors. That means line-ups going up the Malahat - simply due to volume, not from any construction delay (they are always working on the road). This is the main way to drive up-Island. 

We're at the top of the Malahat Drive here, which is a narrow, twisty, winding route alongside mountains and water. 
No, we never stop at the lookouts. A totem pole, with the hazy silhouettes of the hills of south Vancouver Island behind. Yup, seen it a million times. 

It took us nearly an hour to reach Duncan. 
I enjoy this bridge, but otherwise, Duncan is unmemorable for me. We haven't stopped there in decades.

Over an hour later, we're on the open stretch where we can let Vlad the Jaguar open up. 
Vroom! We go fast here. Very fast. 

I always take a picture of this blasted tree. 
It was a bright sunny day, even though it looks cloudy in all the pictures. 

It's the smoke. There should be more mountains in the distance. Very disconcerting not to see them.
Oh, hey! We're nearly at Courtney/Comox, where my brother lives, and where we catch the ferry to the mainland. 

Shelley and Dave. 
And their dog, Tate, vying for attention. 

We were shocked at the line-up when we got to the ferry - I've never seen it so busy. No time to park and go for a walk along the water. 
We sat in the line for close to half an hour, just waiting to get to the ticket booth. Workers came along the massive line-up and pulled out people with reservations (we always book a reservation). 

It was a full ferry - not everyone made it on! 
The Salish Orca is our vessel - see me in the mirror? 

I saw all kinds of cool classic cars during our trip. 
What a beauty! I don't even have a drivers license, but I appreciate how stylish these old cars are. 

Me and L on the ferry. My true blue traveling companion. 
We are always each other's rock. There was only one incidence of snarkiness, and that was before I had coffee (sorry, L). 

Looking at the mainland. PR is on the right and Townsite and the old paper mill are on the left. 
It doesn't look like mid-afternoon, does it? 

Looking down at the cars. 
There is a deck below this as well (the floor lifts up and cars drive down into the bowels). This ferry holds 138 cars and up to 600 passengers. Many people parked their cars and walked on, just to catch the ferry. 

I climbed up to the 4th deck. 
Hoping for a repeat of the orcas I saw last time! No luck.

It was VERY windy. 
I was worried I was going to lose an earring (see how the right one is pulling?). 

We went back down to the car-deck as we approached the PR dock - L spotted this sign. 
I like the lightning bolt zapping the person. ZAP! I shock you! 

And we're here! The bustling little town of Powell River. 
A lot of walk-ons on the left - we zoomed up the hill to the hotel. It's a very hilly place. 

After we checked in, we popped over to L's mom's to say hi. 
Hi, Louise! She has been diagnosed with dementia, and doesn't remember day-to-day things, but she knows us and is still able to live alone (we have care workers come in, and she has other help from friends). 

L and I then met up with longtime friend Kelly for dinner - I didn't take any pictures - at the new Forest Bistro & Lounge (menu link here, 'cause we loved the food - all links in this post 'cause I love, BTW). It used to be the Westview, a very scary biker bar, which I last went to back here in 2018. I was pleased to see that the washroom had a door (and soap) this time!

L and I hung out in our room in the evening, and were up early on Saturday for breakfast at the hotel. 
My Saturday outfit - a dress and same everything else. 

  • Dress - See By Chloe, thrifted; first seen here in April with this same cardigan

I fully sunblocked up but I still got a bit of a pink nose.
We met up with Louise and Virgil (L's older brother) and played a round of mini-golf, and then I went up and down Marine Avenue and had a long leisurely shop on my own (you can always view my favourite second-hand shops here - Powell River is down at the bottom, along with Sidney, BC's). 

Another cool car was just outside our hotel.
It's for sale - don't you just love that baby blue shade?

Look at that light-up hood ornament! So very Art Deco.
I left the Old Dutch Potato Chip company van in the pic because that's the best brand of chips ever! Every kid growing up in the 70s remembers their boxes of chips (3 bags in one box). Yum! 

Another cool car right outside the Tim Horton's. 
Gorgeous! Love the fuzzy dice! 

Pictures at the mini-golf. 
Me and Virgil - he suffers through my picture-taking, heh heh. 

I liked this bumper sticker on his truck. 
Guess who is a hunter? 

Me and Louise. 
Loved her cute top. 

Mom and her two boys. 
Ready to golf? 

Sasquatch says "yes!"
This is the coolest mini-golf I've ever been to - they have a scavenger hunt/find the X on the back of your score card. 

There are all kinds of interesting things here. 
Including a waterwheel/mill, fountains, a lighthouse.

We're on the green. 
Louise moves in for a putt. 

They dye the water a vivid aqua blue. 
It's rather disconcerting in person. Note the crocodile. 

A giant wooden spider! 
It's about 6 feet across! Zoiks! That wasn't here the last time we came. 

A bear catching a couple of salmon off this waterfall. 
Tick those off the list, Virgil! 

More putting. 
Virgil won, L came in second, I was third and Louise was last. 

The lighthouse. 
When we started playing there was only one group ahead of us, but by the time we wrapped up 18 holes, the place was packed. 

Louise got a mint chocolate chip ice cream cone and we sat in the shade for a bit. 
From here, the boys and Louise headed off to drive around and hang out. 

I went shopping up and down Marine Avenue, knowing there would be some good finds. I'll share them with you at the end of the post. 
"Hey, stay off my lawn, Lady."

This kitty was cooling off in the shade. I shopped for about 3.5 hours then walked back to the hotel (all uphill, a good workout!). We walked to dinner and back both nights (about 20 minutes each way). 

We all met up, plus Louise's boyfriend Dave, for dinner at the Coastal Cookery (menu here), which was just okay, but it did have a gorgeous view of the water. 
A big fiery ball of sun - the wildfire smoke does give us beautiful sunsets. 

L and I were up early on Sunday morning for the first ferry home. We had our traditional breakfast on the boat, then read in the lounge for the rest of the crossing. We did see an orca spuming near the boat, but I didn't get a picture of it. 
I always breathe a sigh of relief when I'm back on the Island. Home! 

We've arrived in Courtenay! 
Oh, my, the Comox Valley is full of smoke - there should be mountains straight ahead. 

More missing mountains. 
I have never seen an elk on the highway, despite the signs! We made good time and got home in the early afternoon. 

Ready to see what I bought? My first successful stop was in Madrona (link here), which is your jam-packed not-fancy AT ALL thrift shop, where I found my butterfly Escada jacket last year. I found a bunch of CDs for L (only $2 each), as well as a silk scarf and bracelet for myself. 
The scarf was thrown in for free - I paid $30 for everything I got. It's vintage silk, and the edges are hand-rolled. It's had some love, but for free, I'm not complaining. 

I recognized this bracelet - I have the same (only more worn) one in cobalt blue eelskin and gold-tone. 
It's from the 80s - it was $8.00. I love the teal-coloured eelskin.

I gasped when I saw this pillowcase. L has one from his childhood with "The Empire Strikes Back" on it. 
So I had to get him the "Star Wars" matching pillowcase. You don't see these every day! 

Han Solo has a weird-looking face - he looks like he's been sucking on a lemon. 
No one actually knew the actors' faces back then - this would have been based on the art/painting used for the original poster. 

Poor Princess Leia is a little cross-eyed and her mouth is wonky. 
And Luke is way more ripped than Mark Hamill ever was! 

It's an original, from 1977. 
Copyright 1977 20th Century Fox Film Corp. 

These were sold through Sears, the department store. 
This was also thrown in for free with the rest of the stuff, bundled at $30.00. I spotted a pair of vintage pillowcases on eBay for $50.00. 

I spent a couple of hours in the Willow Rose Boutique (link here), which is hit or miss, but tends to have decent prices for good quality things. I bought a whole bunch of stuff from the same consigner, who apparently collected Ed Hardy. A good article here about Ed, the licensing agreement with Christian Audigier (who ripped off Hardy) and the renaissance of the early 00s designs. 
This is a ginormous faux leather satchel, with a tiger on the front. 

I love the satin tiger lining! There's a zip pocket, plus the usual other open pockets. 
The cord threads through the grommets along the edge. 

Embossed "EH" initials. 
This is a post-Audigier bag - Ed Hardy bought back the rights to his own name in 2011, so this is from some time after that. 

I found a silver version of this bag on eBay for $55.00 USD (plus $45 for shipping!). Mine is new-with-tags, so never even used! 
I'd guess this would have been around $125-150 new. I paid $48.00 for mine, and carried all my purchases in it. 

I always check out the displays and jewelry for odds and ends, and lucked out with this pretty amber bracelet. 
It's regular amber amber plus two green amber stones, set in sterling silver (stamped on the clasp). It was $29.00. 

There were two of these shirts on the clearance rack. 
It's by Christian Audigier - but NOT Ed Hardy, which is odd. I've never seen Audigier on its own before. 

It's a long fitted tee, with belled sleeves, and that's quite the exciting design. 
"CA Bar Los Angeles", a disco ball, sparkly red stars and 60s-inspired motifs. 

Why, yes, that is FRINGE hanging from grommets along the sleeves!
They say "Love In" on one sleeve.

...and "Peace Out" on the other. 
I might have to wear this to a music festival (one's coming up!). I will also need to keep it away from Vizzini! 

And glittery! 

New with tags again! Did the previous owner not want to wear any of this cool stuff? 
That's actually sticker you can peel off. I won't be doing that. 

It's 100% cotton and was made in the USA. 
I think this is from around 2006ish. 

I'm pretty sure it would have cost more than $10.00, which is what it was on sale for. 
Blah, blah, corporate stuff. He was still a jerk for ripping off Ed Hardy, but I like this top, and Audigier is long-dead and I'm not giving him any of my money! 

There were TONS of these tops and other early 00s "going out" tops and mini dresses. 
I will not be wearing this mini dress as a dress, no fear! 

I really liked the design printed on the sequins. 
"Love Kills Slowly" - this is an Ed Hardy design. There is also a grey-on-grey skull below that, which was impossible to photograph. 

"Ed Hardy 7829 Melrose" is what that says. 
I think that was the address of the store back in 2009-ish (it has a lot of hilariously bad reviews on Yelp). 

The back. 
Gee, I wonder who it's by?? 

New with tags - again! 
Seriously, this stuff is meant to be worn. 

Maybe she just stuffed it all in the back of her closet when the backlash to all these designs happened around 2009. 
$99.00 - this might have been the original retail price? I found this dress listed at $240.00 online! I paid $29.00 for it. 

I also bought this similar top (not a dress!) because I love this design. 
The cheesier the design, the better! A scull with crossed swords against flames and black roses? 

Take my money! 
This was new-with-tags as well. 

It was $22.00. 
I found this same top listed online for $250.00. This is also from the early 00s. 

Thus ends my Ed Hardy reign of terror - I won't be wearing any of that to work (unless it's with a blazer on a very casual Friday). It'll be exclusively weekend/party wear. 

I am a fan of these mesh tops for layering - imagine my delight at finding one in leopard! 
It's a very soft mesh, with nice trim around the neckline. 

I spy Dolce & Gabbana! It's from their "underwear" line, was made in Italy, and there's the lovely hologram to assure me of its authenticity. 
This top doesn't have any wear - I'm sure it's also been sitting in a closet for a couple of decades. This is the same D&G fabric as in the lining of my 90s studded jacket (flashing the lining here). It was $29.00 - I couldn't find this exact one online (it's likely from the late 90s), but short-sleeved versions run between $70 and $169.00 second-hand.

I actually left this indigo denim jacket on a rack while shopping, realized 40 minutes later, and ran back for it (it was still hanging there).  
There are two high pockets and it has a stand-up collar (no lapels). 

It's a very fitted, almost corset-like cut. The front section is longer than the back. 
I love that waist seaming. 

A little patch on the side seam. 
Nice stitching. 

I spy a name on the cuff button. 
"G-Star Raw" - I like that the buttons are sewn on with copper thread. 

A little copper "RAW" above one pocket. 
I'm not a fan of the white stitching on the front of the jacket. I'll probably colour over that. 

And there we are, as suspected - it's by G-Star Raw. 
I found a picture of it here in an article about G-Star creating more sustainable clothing, noting it's Fall 2019. A basic denim jacket on their site is $160, and fancier versions go up to $300+. I paid $49.00. 

Phew, I did well on my treasures! I know they aren't to everyone's taste, but I'm excited to wear this stuff. Tell me what your favourites are! 

And now, L and I are going to enjoy the rest of our extra-long weekend off, chilling with our little guy, who is hiding behind L's clothes from the thunder and rain (yay! we need rain!). 
"I do not like the loud rumbles, Woman, make it stop."

Sorry, bud! We'll do our best to comfort you, but for now, you'd better stay hiding in the closet. 

And there you go, my friends! I hope you enjoyed traveling along with us - thank you so much for dropping by! 


  1. I loved traveling with you and L on your road trip and seeing all the family, Sheila! Powell River was one of the stops in the BBCs Race Across The World earlier this year and I told Jon that I knew it from your blog.
    Isn't travelling light fun? Much as I love stuff I don't want to be lugging it around with me.
    Great scores on the Ed Hardy/Christian Audigier clobber. It used to be a massively desirable label in India a few years ago, all the Bollywood stars used to wear it. I love the dress I found in the clearance chazza. I can see that D&G leopard top being a mainstay in your wardrobe.
    Have a wonderful week and send cuddles to Vizzini! xxx

    1. Oh, I'm glad you enjoyed it, Vix. How cool is that - you recognized it! It's a small world, isn't it? Same, I don't see the sense in carrying a ton of stuff when traveling.

      I know it's not the classiest stuff, but I love the cheesy element - I got such good deals. Cuddles received, thank you!

  2. I guessed that was where you were off to! Always lovely to accompany you there. You might have seen those sights a million times, but it all looks fantastic to me.
    I'm admiring your ability to travel light. Travelling by car is always an incentive for not to :-)
    Loving the teal coloured eelskin bracelet and the indigo denim jacket, and the Ed Hardy bag is very you indeed. Oh, and I would have snapped up the vintage Star Wars pillow case too! xxx

    1. Yes, the timing is the same every year - we are creatures of habit! I always enjoy taking pics and thinking of sharing them with my world-wide friends. :)

      Yes, agreed - it's very tempting to fill up the car! I am pleased with my finds :).

  3. Super selfies of you and L, especially your opening photo! No matter how many times you've invited us to follow along on Powell River road trips, each time feels like the first time thanks to your descriptions, activities, outfits and photos. My first thought always is: ugh, they have a long road/ferry trip in front of them. But then I realize that it's not a whole lot different than if we drove home from Fred's next older brother's in Delaware and took the ferry to NJ to make the trip more interesting.

    Hopefully I'm not overstepping a boundary…I'd like to share an organization that might eventually be helpful for your mother-in-law: Montessori for Dementia ( I'm a fan of Montessori education and much of what works for children also has a place for adults with dementia.

    I like your travel outfits and variations on the theme as well as your dress outfit. Just backpacks, oh my, it is a learning process to pack light. I wrote down your suggestions the last time we had a conversation about packing light and hope to implement them in November!

    Three cheers for mini-golf!!! That's always been a vacation favorite when we would visit Fred's parents.

    Here's to the rest of the week being as easy as possible. :-)
    Cheers, Laurie

    1. Thank you for the big, generous comment, Laurie! It's a long journey, but the drive and the ferry are always fun - L and I play CDs in the car and sing along and talk, and I like walking around the ferry before settling and doing some reading.

      Thank you so much for sending that link. <3 Not overstepping.

      Thank you - yes, packing light is a shift of mindset. Good luck with your packing - I usually do it the night before.

      I love mini-golf - I could play it all day. Big hugs to you, my friend.

  4. I enjoyed accompanying you on your road trip! I didn't realise you lived on Vancouver island! Not sure why! Glad you had fun with the relies! Your travel outfits are great! I, too, sweated all over my travel outfits! It was grim and I had to change dress on the way back from Switzerland as I was SOO sweaty!
    You did well in the consignments- someone was really getting rid of a lot of struff! and I love the Star Wars pillow! That's brilliant.

    1. Yes, I've lived here all my life - do you know it? Ugh, it was such a hot weekend, I melted - and so much walking. All my clothes were stinky!

      The pillowcase is my best purchase! Thanks, Kezzie!

  5. It's lovely you make the annual trip to Powell River which I feel I know (despite not having been there) as I've accompanied you on several journeys there previously! I'm sorry to hear about L's mum but she looks really well in the photos and I bet loving her two sons and you there. It's a bloody horrible disease.

    And didn't you do well on your thrifting adventures? I loved all the tattooed stuff but wouldn't wear it myself; I don't like fringing for a start but what bargains! I loved the denim 'corset' jacket; the fab bracelets and the scarf you found.

    Such a shame about the fires and the smoke but I know what you mean about disappearing mountains. When we're in the caravan, if the mist is very thick and low it blanks out our mountains, too!

    Hope you have a great week,

    1. We also go up in the winter for Christmas (or shortly after), Vronni, so you get to see it in both of our extreme seasons. Louise is good - it's not a fun thing to go through, but she is doing well. I'm glad she still knows us.

      I do so well - I do plan to wear the Ed Hardy stuff, but will try to keep it classy (or KLASSY, heh).

      It's so weird when you're used to seeing something and it's just gone! I'd rather mist than smoke! Thank you, Vronni!

  6. What a fabulous road trip. My kind of scenery! I just loved your windscreen shots of the highway flanked by tall trees...I could almost hear the rushing water running alongside.
    Your totem pole photo reminded me of a story in our news this week. A stolen totem pole is being returned to Canada from a museum in Edinburgh. Long overdue.
    The fires are extremely worrying. Wildlife on the highway is not a good sign.
    I imagine L's Mom was so pleased to spend time with you both and lucky you, finding that original Star Wars scarf! x

    1. Glad you enjoyed it, Claire! Oh, yes, I've been reading about that totem being repatriated - it's a good thing.

      The wildlife highway signs are for all year round, not just for the wildfires.

      Yes, it was good to see her. I know, score, right?

  7. What a great weekend. Love the photo from the ferry.

  8. I always admire any light packer, dear Sheila, but I think I lost my 'mojo' during lockdown!. As Ann commented, travelling by car has spoiled me!.
    So lovely to join you in your annual travel, and see your fab finds.
    Totally agree about that 'A scull with crossed swords against flames and black roses?. Take my money!'.

    1. Ha, you've gone to the over-packing side, have you? :D

      Glad you enjoyed it! I love that sparkly Ed Hardy stuff - it's so cool.


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