Welcome to Pebble Beach, White Head Island, New Brunswick, Canada. Nestled in the cold North Atlantic waters of the Bay of Fundy, and boasting some of the highest tides in the world, this little beach is a fun place to do some treasure hunting.
And treasure hunting we did! We had such a nice vacation last month visiting family here. I already told you about our adventures with dulsing and picking bakeapples. Today I want to give you a peek into the amazing North Atlantic beaches on White Head Island, and show you some one-of-a-kind items that are popping into my etsy shop from this beach!
We spent lots of time on the two sandy beaches plus Pebble Beach.
This is Pebble Beach, where my father-in-law does his dulse drying. There are lots of old nets half buried or washed up on the rocks.
With the tide rising and falling 40 feet each 12 hours, an amazing amount of beach treasures are abundant and ready for pickers... like me!
Nothing is too worn or battered. Everything has a story. Everything can be up cycled and made like new again. And its second life will be more beautiful than its original existence.
The sea has smoothed rough edges. The bark has been stripped off of tree limbs, leaving behind a soft white mellow patina. Once-mighty wharfs and stately trees have been drifting in the cold North Atlantic. How long? Long enough to strip away tough parts and splinters. Long enough to expose a new beauty from the broken pieces.
So from the Bay of Fundy beaches on White Head Island, right to your coastal-inspired decor, here are my newest pieces in my driftwood collection. Use this green knobbed beauty to hang your favorite jewelry or keys.
If you like authentic and natural, this one is for you. I love to imagine what it was in its former life. Those nails are original. The driftwood has specks of something left on it... maybe specks of bark or specks of seaweed dried on? Whatever it is, you could never recreate this patina. It's unashamedly natural. Humble, even. Never to be replicated. If you love it, grab it.
I'm sure there will be more to come from my stash of driftwood, nets, sea glass, and periwinkle shells. Stay tuned. It's such fun to create treasures from seemingly worthless things. And it reminds me of what the Master Creator has done in my life. Taken the old, the worthless, the broken, and made me a new creation.
We did a lot of picking while visiting White Head Island, N.B., Canada, on our recent vacation. Picking dulse. Picking bakeapples. And picking treasures off the beach (more on that in a later post!)
So today I want to show you our adventure in picking bakeapples, how you can get some yummy jam for yourself and support our adoption at the same time!
Bakeapples occupy a variety of moist northern tundra and peat bog habitats. White Head Island in the Bay of Fundy, is one of those special places where they grow. On a rather warm day on White Head Island, we took our vehicles as far as they could go toward the heath. Rubber boots. Check. Buckets. Check. Now to find those bakeapples.
Into the heath we went. We had to be careful to step on sturdy ground. Sometimes our feet went into the mossy heath too far, and we almost lost some boots! We made sure not to lose any boys :)
We were there at just the right time, since they are generally ready for picking around mid July. First came a lesson from Nana on what to look for. Bakeapples look like a large raspberry. The fruit is red when unripe and turns a soft golden orange at maturity. It grows one berry to a plant approximately 3-4 inches high.
Called "bakeapple" in Atlantic Canada, the name is anglicized from the French, "baie qu'appelle..." meaning, "what is this berry called..?" It is internationally known as a "Cloudberry." It was interesting to discover that IKEA sells Cloudberry Jam, but it is not available on their website. It is only available in their stores when you're lucky enough to find it in stock.
Bakeapples have a distinct honey/apricot-like flavor. These berries are extremely rich in vitamin C and contain few calories. And like IKEA says, "Their rarity makes cloudberries a delicacy." Yes, hand-picked, each one of them.
After an hour or two in the heath picking bakeapples, we were ready to take them back to the house and let Nana work her magic on them and produce... Bakeapple Jam for my etsy shop!
If you're looking for the perfect gift for that person who has everything... how about our Bakeapple Jam? There is a limited quantity available, so grab it while you can. And as always, the proceeds from the jam (and everything else in my etsy shop!) go toward the adoption of our daughter from Ethiopia.
There's no place quite like the Bay of Fundy. And I am lucky enough to have a reason to visit there as often as we can. My husband's family's roots are in this place. More specifically, the family roots are on a little island off another little island in the cold North Atlantic waters off the coast of Maine & New Brunswick.
Do you see little White Head Island on that map? That's where we spent a glorious two weeks this summer! First, we took the ferry from Black's Harbour, NB, Canada, to Grand Manan Island, which is only 15 x 7 miles, and home to about 2,600 people.
Then another ferry took us to White Head Island, which is home to about 150 people.
Most people on these two islands make their living from the sea. Lobstering, fishing, scalloping, herring weirs, and dulsing are common livelihoods here.
When we visit, the busyness of schedules & appointments melts away. Life ebbs & flows with the tides.
You see, the Bay of Fundy boasts the highest tides in the world. During the 12.4-hour tidal period, 115 billion tons of water flow in and out of the bay. This means that the water level rises and falls about 40 feet with each tide. This is amazing to see!
So, with the sea floor exposed at low tide, my father-in-law picks dulse.
What in the world is dulse? So glad you asked :) Dulse is a ruby-red seaweed that is picked from the rocks at low tide, dried on the rocky beach, and then enjoyed by many in the Maritime Provinces as a salty snack. There are even sea vegetable companies that buy my father-in-law's first quality dulse.
Upon first arriving on White Head, my father-in-law, husband, and two oldest sons didn't waste any time in going out dulsing!
Picking and more picking....
And then if the weather is right (and the fog hasn't rolled in), the dulse is spread on nets on the rocky beach to dry in the wind and the sun.