The story behind the picture
The picture was actually taken on Pender Island but those of us who live on the West Coast know that it could have been taken on any of the islands. Trees, rocks and water are all around us all the time as reminders..... This month we would like to think about the many ways in which our lives here at Harbourside connect with the Sooke community and the natural world around us on the West Coast of Canada. 
Letting Loose
Everyone seemed to enjoy the games arranged by the "Fun Team"at Harbourside's annual picnic held on an overcast Saturday afternoon at William Simmons Park. 
Above: Margaret and Bev's efforts enable a rope swing for Bob I. in one of Doug's famous collaborative rope projects. 
Below: David demonstrates professional frisbee form and Frank takes a breather from the frenzied round of activities. 
Community Connections
(The first in a series of articles on how Harboursiders connect with the larger Sooke community)
My involvement in the startup of Sooke Region Lifelong Learners has led to many rewarding friendships with district residents, and to a deeper understanding of the multiple groups that make this community function.
Presenters and facilitators for our various workshops and mini-programs eagerly volunteered their services. I quickly came to appreciate the wealth of talent in Sooke, and how willing people are to share their expertise and passions.
When we needed space for our various Lifelong Learning offerings, SEAPARC offered its board room free of charge and the Child, Youth & Family Centre made multiple rooms available. Publicity and registration? The Sooke Region Volunteer Centre provided all the support one could hope for. No wonder Sooke prides itself on being the unofficial “volunteer capital” of Canada.
Sooke Region Lifelong Learners now functions as a working group under the umbrella of the Sooke Region Communities Health Network (SRCHN). Getting to know the SRCHN board of directors has opened my eyes to an amazing group of people dedicated to improving life in Sooke.  (Bob S)
Harboursider at Sooke Fine Art Show

This intricate fabric art piece by Kaye was accepted into the Sooke Fine Art Show this year as one of the 375 artworks on display from July 27th to August 6th. This is Vancouver Island's premier juried art show and works on display have been selected from thousands of entries. Kaye sent us this description of how she works.

"I begin with a photo, then decide on a size, I start off with a piece of white fabric, then I lay down biggish  pieces of fabric  to represent the different areas, sky, mountains, forest, foreground, whatever,  then add the details cut out of fabric!      

After that I put it on  a piece of batting (as in quilting), secure all the fabric pieces with a sewing machine, finish it off with a back piece of fabric, and continue to add little details also with a sewing machine. By then I am totally fed up with it and put it out of sight for a few months or so!!"  

Then it's time for the rest of us to bring fresh eyes to Kaye's work to remind her how very fine it is.....congratulations Kaye! 
Dues and do's

Ahh the joys of waterfront living. Gotta pay some “dues" to have the view and access to the ocean, plus a list of “do’s” requiring maintenance.
Our old weed log became a “low floater” because of the acquired growth of barnacles and mussels sinking it lower in the water. Weeds and floatsam were gathering under our wharf, washing right over the low floater.
Thanks to our kind neighbours next door, Dannie and Cindy, we now have a 51’ red cedar log from their beach, which is much too good to use for a weed log but he said to use it anyway. Then came the "fun.”
For 15 hours over the next week we beached it, cut it down to 40’ and moved it to be outside our old weed log. Rene and Ralph scraped off unwanted growth from the old weed log, floating it two inches higher, rerigged it to act as a fender between our pilings and the new high floating cedar. (above left)

A photo by Warren (above right) shows Ralph on his back on the Service Float for two reasons. Taking a break, and stretching out the vertebrae on a hard surface. You will notice the two dark patches by his head. That is some of the ultra healthy fine green seaweed that we will use in composting for the garden. (Ralph)
Sunday Brunch

 This is one of the most popular shared meal events at Harbourside. Warren and Ellen got the whole idea started and continue to organize it every week they are here. Of course, its success depends on the participation of many other people to help set up, cook and clean up. 

Menus vary every week with a wide selection of breakfast possibilities from Wynn's popular waffles to huevos rancheros! The brunch pictured above offered bagels with poached eggs and bacon; smoked salmon, red onion and avocado, melon and blackberries picked by Doug that morning. One of Ellen's famous smoothie concoctions (often green) appears in the foreground of the left photo.

Healthful and delicious and fun to share! (Arlene)
Field to Freezer
It's that time again! Pictured above is Marisa's phenomenal basil patch that has been harvested many times already to produce jars and jars of pesto. 

Blackberries hang over our fences and enticingly grow everywhere for the picking around here. They are easily frozen for the winter or make wonderful blackberry jam. 

Vegetables for the taking show up regularly in our Common House as our many Harbourside gardeners share their extra produce. Squash and tomatoes are ripening now and apples and pears will need picking and processing very soon! 

A wonderful time of year on the West Coast. (Arlene)
Toronto Workshop Explores Co-housing
Leadership is provided by Kitty Elton, a founder and director of West Wind Harbour Cohousing in Sooke, B.C.

Saturday, October 20 and Sunday, October 21, 9:30 to 4:30
Runnymede Library, 2178 Bloor St. West, Toronto
Casual Barbeque at Wine on the Porch on Saturday evening
For more information or tickets visit
This is a sad picture actually.... John is holding the unripened pumpkin that snapped off the vine when he tried to support it.
As seen through Hank and Marisa’s binoculars, mama seal feeding the baby seal that was born on our dock.
Three more missed photo ops on our waterfront!

1) Ralph feeding the beautiful white Mute Swan elegantly swimming around our inner harbor.

2) The 17 seals lazing on Dannie’s dock that Marisa counted.

3) Warren patiently restoring a canoe down by the wharf shop. He found it abandoned on Cortez Island and plans to return it there when they leave in September. 

This is not a sad picture. This is the picture of a happy man who loves ice cream and rode many miles on his bike to get it!
Pat caught this image of 3 deer out for a morning stroll on our wharf.
Naomi, Ralph and Kaye celebrating August birthdays. 
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