a new happy place is born

September 18, 2013 |  Category:   life travels










The first time Mark and I traveled to Victoria, we were in our early 20s and we took a road trip with our roommates, driving from Portland all the way to Vancouver. On a whim, we decided to take the ferry to Victoria on a day trip while we were up north. I remember that trip well because it was such a good bonding vacation with the roommates at a time when household dynamics weren’t always comfortable. We took a lot of photos too as I recall, posing on the ferry and the hotel balcony with beer and cigarettes. You know, stupid youthful pictures that I’m sure would have ended up on Facebook had it existed back in ancient times (and man, I’m so glad that wasn’t around in the 90s).


I remember thinking how pretty Victoria was and it’s still as pretty as I remembered it. It’s bustling too, with plenty of pubs and outdoor cafes, street performers and outdoor markets. One of things we wanted to do while in Victoria was have dimsum in Chinatown, not because the dimsum was supposed to be that much more amazing than what we can get here in NY, but because dimsum is one of those things that we always keep meaning to do back home, but manage to only have once or twice a year. Mia loves dimsum and it might be her favorite meal ever, but Miss C has never taken a liking to it and it was always a challenge to find even one thing off the cart or menu that she wanted to eat. When we told her our plan of having a dimsum brunch on Sunday, she groaned.

But something happened and she was more open to trying a few things. Maybe we can chalk it up to being on vacation and somewhere new, but she kept trying new dishes and eating and finally exclaiming how yummy everything tasted, particularly the Chinese greens. The verdict? She’s a fan of dimsum now which means that when we go out to dimsum again we won’t have to bring along a container of apples and cheddar bunnies to tide her over until we can find something for her elsewhere.

As we were leaving the restaurant, she turned to me, hugged my arm and thanked me for giving her a new happy place.

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  • dolittledesign September 18, 2013 at 3:38 pm

    Pea pods stems are my 7-year-old’s favorite.

  • Bridget September 18, 2013 at 4:02 pm

    Oh my goodness, this makes me so happy too! as a parent of a kid very much still in the cheddar bunnies and apples phase that last line tugs at my heart strings on so many levels. lovely peice, thank you!

  • Tina September 18, 2013 at 4:09 pm

    Victoria is beautiful. I wished we had a chance to go when we visited Seattle a few years ago. These pictures will give us an incentive to go back. tThanks for sharing!

  • alexandra September 18, 2013 at 4:23 pm

    I grew up in Victoria! It is so lovely. So nice to see it here on your blog – your pictures have made me homesick! I’m glad you it’s one of your family’s happy places :)

  • Melinda's Musings September 18, 2013 at 5:24 pm

    Sounds fun and looks absolutely lovely from your photos!

  • Anne-Marie September 19, 2013 at 5:49 am

    being thanked for finding someone a new happy place – that’s so lovely!

  • Christie September 19, 2013 at 10:23 am

    Yay! I’m so happy to hear that Claudine now likes dim sum. It’s one of my favs. =)

  • Angela September 20, 2013 at 12:00 pm

    That is so cute! I’ve always known dimsum was magical!

  • Sora September 20, 2013 at 2:52 pm

    Thank you for these photos, Jenna. We will be spending Thanksgiving week in Vancouver and Tofino (our happy place). Perhaps we will make time for Victoria as well. It looks wonderful. We are excited to take our girls there for their first visit.

  • Mak September 21, 2013 at 4:04 pm

    I’ve been reading your blog for years. I live in Victoria and work close to the China Town. It was really nice to see something very familiar in you blog! Not sure if you had a chance to try some coffee places in Victoria but Bean Around the World and Habit Coffee in that area are quite good. Love dim sum of course.

    I don’t want to sound creepy or anything but after reading the same blogs for a few years it somewhat becomes a part of your life. I know blog only shows a small part of anybody’s lives but naturally you start resonating with the blogs you read. And then one day, all of sudden, you see a blog author’s life and your life come across by accident, which is a nice little surprise. I am glad you and your family enjoyed your time on the West Coast.

  • Natalie September 21, 2013 at 9:12 pm

    My hometown! Love that you went to visit again. Great to see a familiar place on one of my favorite blogs.