My Life is really in the Garden

Enjoying and sharing the daily discoveries of the beautiful nature that surrounds me in my lovely garden and everywhere else!


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Thursday, January 31, 2013

Daily, the spirit is there to just blog away … but I resist and instead, go for walks.   Play outside.  Take photos of birds.  Things like that.  I think it is the time of the year .. the space between the festivities of Christmas and the waiting for the motivational energy of Spring to strike.  Or at least that is what I think.

I’ve come to discover that my daily walks are ever so energizing.   Such a part of my daily life that when I miss one .. I feel a little uninspired.   Noticed this yesterday .. when I became “too busy” to embark on a 3 mile walk and it was reinforced today .. when I walked well over 3 miles .. that I just love getting outside.   Travelling all over the neighbourhood.   Meeting birders at Swan Lake Nature Sanctuary.  Learning names of birds.   Like today, I found out that the very darling little olive-green and yellow bird (much smaller than the Bush-tits) was actually a Ruby-crowned Kinglet!!

I was having great difficulty taking a clear photo and have learned this common, as these little birds are constantly flitting about.  Just found this lively YouTube video .. great music accompanies this little darling at a window bird feeder:   http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AYce1XbRlHk   This “SmellLikeDirt” site is very interesting and I’ll mark it as a favourite, for sure:  http://www.youtube.com/user/SmellLikeDirt?feature=watch  She shares great information and has many great videos!!

Here is darling little Goose dog!  DH & I met this little guy when we were out for a long walk a few days ago … how very sweet .. and in a loving family ..

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The Cormorants are still hanging around as a group, over by the long walkway at Swan Lake .. they are very elegant ..

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Now this very handsome bird is, I think, a sparrow .. I’ve been looking through books and websites for half an hour and just can’t determine.   Very shy, dainty songs …

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If you know the name of this lovely bird .. pls share with me …04

Very darling bird … 05

Oh, thank goodness for digital cameras, I can’t bear to think how much money all these photos would have cost in the “olden” days!

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And Mushrooms and mycorrhizal species will really save the world .. how wonderful to see this set up along one of the path ways!!!08

Townsend’s  Warbler .. yea .. still in the yard10

Such a treat to see ..11

Do you ever wonder if the “forces that be” are encouraging us along in our path?  Last night I was in my little (very  overcrowded) craft room.   Tossing away (in a container to donate for a reading program) books .. being as heartless as I could be.   Ended up with 3 containers full, not bad.

This .. to me .. is like trying to walk through molasses .. sorting out things.  I have been a sewing collector, crafts collector for many years.  If it sparkles .. I gravitate towards it and add to my collection.

Well. …. time to stop that and get rid of some things.  After my books (and I can still well get through many more, but, a step at a time. .. then I started on my sewing items.  Oh .. my … the things I found.  Many varieties of sewing needles, both for the serger(s), sewing machine and hand stitching.   What to do.  I started off by throwing them all in a glass container.  Step one.

I’m feeling as if I’m not making any progress at all .. .but I think back to several sessions of decluttering that I went through last year and know that, even though this is slow progress .. it won’t take long to get through.   What works best for me is going through one box or container, dealing with it .. leaving the room and then return.  Each time I go through this, I can really see the progress.

And I know that clutter holds us back.  What is more freeing that being in a neatly organized, tidy, spare .. room!  More space for creativity.  I can envision that.

Anyway, after I went through a second container, I found a small bag of money .. folding and coins!   I’d “momentarily” tucked the bag away in a box.   I think that this might be the universe’s way of rewarding me .. encouraging me .. to continue what I’m doing.

Who knows what other treasures I’ll find as I make my way through my collections?

🙂

 


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I finally prepared my magnificent Luminara pumpkin ….curry vegetable stew and so very delicious

Thursday, January 10, 2013

I’ve slowly begun to be sort of active and getting things done lately, not much, mind you .. but some.  And as things just build on themselves, without really trying – I’m sure that I’ll be back to my busy whirling dervish kind of person again.

Although I’m not a super big Christmas and New Year celebration kind of person … I did find myself getting swept up into the spirit of things.   And grew to really love shopping .. just to be out in the friendly shopping malls in town and perhaps a visit or two downtown.

Energizing to speak with fellow shoppers.  See the joy in other’s faces.  And sometimes the sadness.  There is always lots of both out in the world.

Years ago I’d decided to feel the joy of Christmas every day of the year so that it wouldn’t feel as if the happy holiday energy wouldn’t suddenly disappear after a few days .. but would stay with me.   And it has.  Although I must admit to loving the atmosphere of Christmas.  The delicious foods (shortbread, Christmas pudding, a little fruit cake) rum and nog, perhaps a fancy drink or two.  Visiting with friends.  Snuggling with my DH .. that’s my very favourite.

Thus far in the New Year .. I decide to get back into exercising .. and I’ve done that with my lovely daily walks.   Walking everywhere and mostly ending up at Swan Lake …quite often.  There are other beautiful places to be in town .. but this is the closest and besides I love seeing the birds of all types.

And back to decluttering.  Spent a bit of time yesterday sorting out books to donate to the blue box (reading program) and have about 100 (yes, that many!!) neatly placed in bags and boxes to take over tomorrow.

Those are fictions books, including some videos and music cd’s.  And I need to cull my gardening book collection .. but not today.

So yesterday, after doing all that .. I decided that it was high time to cut up my wonderful crop of (one) Luminara pumpkin.  But first, I have to ensure that this is non-GM .. so spent some time searching and found that it is not.  Although I still have the plant tab that came with the plant “somewhere” in my gardening stash .. so will double-check on the ‘net once I have that little item.

I’m not knowledgeable about pumpkins and only found out this year (blush) that there are more varieties than the normal orange Jack-o-Lantern!  Months ago, I’d chosen a curry vegetable stew at a local restaurant which contained rich orange pumpkin .. and thus I entered the world of pumpkin land!

So you can see that I was quite happy when I cut up my treasured pumpkin and discovered that the fruit was a rich orange colour!

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Then I spent awhile looking up recipes for curry pumpkin stew .. and there are quite a few.  I didn’t have all the ingredients, so I ended up making up my own recipe!

I steamed 2 of the large sections in a covered roasting pan …. later scooped all the lovely pulp into a bowl.    Added some butter on top and a light sprinkle of pepper!

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Now .. this looked so delicious that I had to put some in a little bowl for tasting.  oh .. my .. this was just ambrosia and tasted like sweet potato!  I managed to freeze most of this to add to a future soup.

The rest of the pumpkin .. well .. I cut it into cubes.  Along with cubed sweet potatoes.  They really looked pretty and I wish I’d taken more photos so I could share in my culinary boasting .. but ended up being so busy, measuring, and all that .. so it completely slipped my mind.

Chopped up onion & garlic (of which I have quite a bit of!) and swirled them in a soup pot with some olive oil.  Added the pumpkin, sweet potato, curry powder, sea salt, freshly ground pepper.    Organic chicken broth & a tin of crushed tomatoes.

Cooked for a while ….. tasted .. and another wonderful dish was born! Yum.  Some for the freezer and some in the fridge for lunches.

And I’d rinsed and rinsed and rinsed the seeds:

31Removed the pumpkin fruit from them …. patted them dry .. and now they are drying in a dish.  Many many seeds!    Lots for me to grow this summer, share with friends and perhaps donate at Seedy Saturday.

Finally, clean-up time.  Lots of materials for composting.

Tired .. but happy .. a great way to end another wonderful day!

🙂


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Walking in the rain .. under a sky blue lined umbrella .. enjoying the peace and quiet .. how very lovely yesterday was!

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Yesterday, the rains poured down from the heavens .. and this was a perfect day for a walk .. so I set out.  However .. firstly .. here is a little photo of the little Fox Sparrow, who had a serious problem with his left eye.  Today I noticed that the problem is much worse and, sadly, I saw another with the same problem with his right eye.

I’ve read, from some birding blogs, that these issues are more readily viewed when there are bird feeders closer to the house.  Otherwise, they wouldn’t be noticed.  Nevertheless, I brought most of the birdfeeders & suet holders inside for a good scrub, a light bleach rinse and lots of clear water rinsing.  Amazing the amount of seeds were tucked away tightly.  Washed, rinsed, dried and fresh seed & suet.  The world was a little happier place.

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Next, at the front of the house, I’m just about ready to leave when I notice a neighbour’s cat .. very friendly … came up the front stairs … apparently quite ready to come inside for a visit.  However, a branch from our Christmas tree appeared to capture his attention.

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Sorry, sweetie .. another time … love that face!  02

I began my trek … along local pathways … no one else out at this particular time .. so only me and the rain and my umbrella .. quite  tranquil time .. loving this.

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I love walking in the rain  … especially with this very cheerful umbrella … the top side is solid black and the inside is blue… with fluffy cumulous clouds .. very happy indeed.  So in contrast, the sleet ridden roads all of a sudden don’t seem to be so gloomy.

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This pathway is new … it allows runners/bikers/walkers to enter Rainbow Park more easily and it opens right off of McKenzie Avenue.  This is the first time I’ve walked this way .. kind of curious to see how it works out .. previously, this was all a grassy hillside.

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Just before this , though, along McKenzie Avenue .. is a lovely little green area with magnificent trees …

09 And further along .. a massive amount of ferns growing along  .. very lush and beautiful …  07

And more berried bushes .. food for the deer?  Lovely to look at ..06

What a cheerful sight .. lots of flowers …

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And  .. just a few minutes from starting my walk I arrive at Rainbow Park .. a lovely place, well named.

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And what do we have here … another route to my favourite place!  There are quite a variety of routes to Swan Lake Sanctuary and it’s fun to try a different one for each visit.

13At the little observatory (once I reached it!) I could see a little Mallard out in the middle of Swan Lake .. and I think he saw me ..but, alas, I hadn’t brought any flatted oats with me .. so I left before I could draw him over in false hope for food ..

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Farther along .. you can see the fence posts, still here, from the dairy farm that once flourished here.  My pal D remembers this quite clearly .. she and her family used to purchase their milk from the store that once existed.   Kind of nice to see these posts, though, a salute to previous times.  19

I love everything about Swan Lake .. and there are some areas that are just so much more awesome than others.  This is one .. and see the nest up in the tree to the right?  Cool.

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Rain .. rain .. rain .. everywhere.  But I’m not worried .. my waterproof walking shoes are about the only dry apparel that I have .. it’s taken me awhile to walk these shoes into a comfortable state of being .. and I can quite enjoy them now.17

Some Mallards enjoy the peace and quiet.16

Moi mes souliers ont beaucoup voyagé (grace a les mots de Felix Leclerc) 15

And this signage just never gets tired!!  See the last line .. so true.14

Sigh …


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These are a few of my favourite things ….

Sunday, December 30, 2012

Haven’t spent much time out in the yard and today was just a totally luxuriantly lazy day .. so I thought I would share some of my favourite things!

First on the list is this most wonderful yard cart that DH gave to me on Christmas Day.   Not sure what I love more .. the fact that he gave me something that is such a labour-saving device in the garden .. or the fact that he spent so much time on Christmas Day assembling it for me.  I think the two facts are part and parcel … really, a gift of love, priceless!

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Next on my list is the amazingly beautiful vista overhead .. the ever-changing sky landscape.  I must admit that I really don’t get a lot of gardening done on beautiful days like this!   Spend a lot of time looking up at the sky!  Really, can you blame me, though?13

 

This was a soft … gentle sky … wispy clouds11

 

And these were all taken on the same day, can you believe it!  10

 

Moody .. in a happy way …09

 

Lovely cumulus clouds .. they resembled a stack of fluffy pancakes .. 08

Ok .. these really struck a chord in me .. so beautiful ..06

 

and my other favourite things ( on a very long list ) are .. birds.    Here is a little Chestnut-Backed Chickadee at one of the suet holders.05

Mustn’t forget my latest plant purchase .. for our next home … there is one more at the store .. and .. I … must … resist … purchasing … that one!04

 

Sweet little Bushtits … they are so very darling ..03

 

They are also very polite .. waiting patiently for their turn at the suet block02

 

Ok .. I like them a lot …01

and .. look how easy this is . .no more shovelling the contents of the cart .. just pull on the tipping handle and all the contents are on the garden bed .. saves me so much shovelling. (this is after)

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and this is during … such ease .. I am feeling quite pampered now!

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At first I thought that the cart wouldn’t hold much material .. but as I continued shoveling the fine mulch into the cart .. I was really amazed .. it holds a lot!19

 

Well .. there you have it .. a pictorial display of (some) favourite things .. there are many others, of which I am quite grateful.

Sigh.

And for the New Year .. .I’m not one for making resolutions, “but” I will continue on my decluttering activities.  Since I’ve already started that this year … guess I’ll just continue on.

About procrastination .. I’ve been working on that this year and actually making some headway .. yea to me.  However, I’ve recently found that the phrase “I’ll start that in the New Year” quite appropriate and have been using that mantra during the past few days. As I look at areas that I fully intend to organize/recycle/finish!!!  Just as I start to feel that I “should” get started, but really don’t feel like doing …right now!

As soon as I say the magic words “next year” I feel as if a tremendous weight has been lifted from my shoulders.

It’s a fait accompli, or something like that.

So .. if I am not inspired to blog tomorrow .. although I think that I will ..  for right now – I’ll hoist a glass of dry white and wish everyone a very very Happy New Year .. 2013 .. wow!  All the best and all that! (sip … sip ..)  ha ha

🙂

 


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Wishing happy thoughts and peaceful moments on this day …

Saw some Spotted Towhees, Juncos (male and female) Bushtits, Robins, Anna Hummingbirds, Fox Sparrows, House Sparrows .. European Starlings, Seagulls etc in our yards recently .. so very happy to see them.

Placed more suet and bird seed around the yard.

Happiness,

Tranquility.

Their amazing beauty and activities are humbly appreciated.

🙂

And .. I just wanted to share some blue skies with everyone ….

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Time for tea .. blue skies .. another plant purchase .. a lovely period of time

Monday, December 24, 2012

A few days ago … I decided it was time to go shopping downtown .. time for a quick coffee visit with a friend and also to visit the Mediterranean shop on Pandora.  Hadn’t been there for quite a few years .. how time flies and all that.

On the way there … I couldn’t pass up the opportunity to look up at the beautiful sunny skies and snap some photos.  Interesting clouds.

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The white fluffy clouds tumbled and twirled .. changing shapes smoothly and quickly.  Always beautiful, though.

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Lucky to find a parking space not far from the shop … looking forward to visiting it again.  My pal J and I used to visit this lovely treasure at lunch-time, years ago.  Bought the most delicious middle-eastern foods for lunch.  Spices.  Tea.  All sorts of lovely things.  Same proprietor … working from 7 am till 10 at night … rent is high in this district.  I understand that he sells the free-range eggs for the same price that he pays for them .. so no profit from them.  I bought 2 dozen (delicious) eggs and a supply of foods for the pantry.

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Among my purchases was this delicious tea .. .. loose leaf, the best.

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Next .. I went to Penelope’s (sorry, no pic) to meet with J for a quick cup of tea.  We both have places to go, people to see .. but important to fit in a quick visit.   Lovely cafe … we enjoyed large cups of English Breakfast Tea .. and the lovely counter-guy brought us a little pitcher of milk to our table (we’d forgotten that!) …. he was so very thoughtful.

Afterwards, I drove down to the shopping area by the water .. looking forward to visiting some stores there.   Spent some time looking at the lovely old brick buildings still intact.  Below is one building used for Hydro … I’ll bet the offices there are funky!

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Another fine old building … didn’t notice the business name ..just admired the beauty.05

And … the skies were still amazing ….06

Rustic .. and protected by fencing …

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Window coverings, serving as security for the building and decorative ironwork .. liking that.

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For just a brief moment, as I walked along ….I stopped for a few seconds .. there was no traffic noise, sun warming the street .. I felt transported back to my hometown of my younger days, a little place with lots of brick buildings, no crowds .. it was a nostalgic moment and I savoured it

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Always love this mural painted on the back of a building which faces the parking lot of Capital Iron … doesn’t it seem as if the young cub is looking right at you?

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I think these are passion flowers gone to seed .. the birds were happily feasting away on the seed-heads .. cheerful sounds ..11

Ahhhhh …..12

Lovely old windows, warm butter-hued paint against the rustic brick …

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Stopped to admire the beauty of this delivery bike .. and chatted with the owner.  She and her DH worked hard to keep this sprout business going.  She bikes from the nearby Fernwood neighbourhood (about 15 minutes away) and delivers the fresh organic product to homes and businesses.

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Heading back to my car .. I noticed several pairs of pigeons, nestled on the overhead wires, soaking up the warm rays of the sun.

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Oh, and one more thing .. after seeing this tree at Capital Iron .. for over a month now … every time I go shopping there .. and thinking and dreaming about this tree .. I finally broke down and bought it!  It is a weeping pussy willow tree.   Pendula Salix caprea.   And it was half price.  How could I possibly resist.  After paying for it (and another red flowering currant .. flowers for the hummingbirds in the spring) .. I spent about 10 minutes fitting it into my car.  All efforts were worth it though!  Here it is in the back yard.  I’ll pot it up into a bigger container .. as it will be planted in our next place!   Happy am I.

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Blue skies .. birdies flying around .. more plants for the garden .. and visiting with friends …treasures indeed!  🙂


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Well, it was another seaweed-y kind of day, with some shopping thrown in .. all on a rainy day!

Thursday, December 20, 2012

D and I chose yesterday as the “day in the week” for our weekly adventuring.  The weather was predicted to be dry and perhaps a little sunny.  So we weren’t totally surprised to see the pouring rains.

Due to the proximity of the mountains in this part of the world, the weather predictions just aren’t always reliable ..but we are used to that.  This time of the year, it’s normal to carry an umbrella and sunglasses, to cover all bases.

We pondered over whether we should travel today or not .. and decided to continue …. the rains would probably stop at some point.

As we drove to our first destination .. amidst the steady, downpour of rain, windshield wipers efficiently working away to keep the glass nice and clear for good visibility… we chatted about this and that ..  commenting on the weather .. and why the heck there was a steady line of traffic heading towards Victoria and away from Sooke.   Normally, early mid-morning, traffic is very light.  Hmmm .. perhaps dwellers of Sooke were travelling to the big city for Christmas shopping and we were going there ….

So .. our agenda consisted of shopping .. to the delightful Lighthouse Bakery in Langford … I bought the most delicious assortment of cake squares .. a lovely mix of Nanaimo Bars, Langford Bars and some lemon square.    Delicious and such reasonable prices, I couldn’t make them for the price they charge.

Finally .. champing at the bit .. we head to our first thrift store.   We always enter the store, firmly deciding that we would make no purchases and soon we are carrying little shopping baskets … filling them up as we go.  Not just any purchases, but genuine treasures.  Delicate little ornaments to add to the tree (I’ll show pictures tomorrow!!!)

There seems to be a trend of items from the 60’s available now .. and so we have lots to choose from.  Including delightful Christmas wrapping paper from that era.  I did pick up a package .. but will I use it or save it?  I think that first I will take a photo, to preserve the look .. and then .. I will use the paper.  It’s been saved long enough .. time to get out there and let everyone admire the beauty.

Then on to Glenwood Meats … local product .. support the Island businesses, we say.

A few more shops .. more treasures found.  Lovely glasses.   A Dr. Oekter’s flan tart pan (only $3.50 and half price at that ) brand new!!  I plan to make some shortbread, using some delicious vanilla brandy that D prepared, generously giving me some (glad she told me it was for baking, I’d been looking forward to having a sip of this mixture!)

What else did we find ?  Oh, the most absolutely wonderful capacious travel bag .. brand new … with “mots en francais, partout” .. .I’ll take a picture of that and will share tomorrow.  As I’ve said before, D has a special talent for unearthing the most amazing treasures when we go shopping.  This bag had been sort of hidden away and she unearthed it!  Could it be any more perfect for transporting my soaps .. in a grand and stylish way!

Oh, we gathered such wonderful treats.  And I found an unusual SPCA zipped bag .. just had to get that and I’ll share that tomorrow also.

Time for a wee break … once all of our shopping was done .. and away to our favourite bakery for a little bit of soup and a beverage .. the Little Vienna Bakery!!!

See the lovely festive Christmas decorations decorating the mantle of the sideboard at Little Vienna Bakery .. yesterday …

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And dainty little blue globes adorned the branches lovingly arranged in the container nearby

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I wonder …. if I were, perhaps, a little taller .. would I have been tempted to see if I could tastefully remove this delicious cookie for a taste test?

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A close up of one of the sparkly decorations in the window …

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Finally … time to visit the beach to gather up some of the lovely chopped seaweed .. for the garden.   Sun would be setting fairly soon .. so we had a timeline.  And together we gathered up quite a bit in a very short time.  Yea … my garden is going to be so happy and healthy.

And .. guess what!!!  The rains had stopped pouring down by this time .. we were so lucky!!  Our timing was right on!   Yea!!!

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The tide was coming in so we had to work fast.

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The sounds of the waves got louder and louder and we swiftly glanced at the incoming waves as we scooped up the seaweed potpourri ..

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Some ducks flew by overhead and I quickly snapped a picture .. can you see them .. among the branches?

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The tide was swiftly coming in .. as each wave cascaded onto the beach ..swiftly encroaching on the bounty of seaweed .. reclaiming it again to the depths of the ocean …

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Oh, the massive amounts of seaweed lying there on the beach .. quite an impressive sight .. so close, and yet so far .. with the waves washing in … no way was I going to brave the power of the ocean .. tempting as it was ..

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And then .. along comes someone who savours the power of the waves … as a sort of open highway for his board ..

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D and I watched as he carefully placed his board on the water, getting ready for his ride upon the waves …

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And soon he was paddling away .. nice way to end the work day, what!13 14 15

And we on shore looked down at the quickly disappearing beach .. adieu … until another day ..

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Driving home, tired and happy .. we discussed our purchases and couldn’t recall exactly all of the things that we chose .. so that just adds to the surprise later.   Like a practice Christmas morning!

The car smelled deliciously of the ocean …. as we had quite a few netted bags of chopped seaweed in the back of the car.   Spread over top of these were our new purchases .. here and there!

So .. D back home to prepare supper for her family .. and I made my way home … DH is working so I can quickly unload the seaweed to the back yard and transport my treasures to the kitchen for a quick scrub and dry .. before putting them all away.

I’ll show him what I’ve brought home … later ….  he is quite appreciative of my frugal purchases.  And, if I don’t show him all of the things .. well .. ummm … some are supplies for my soap making .. so I’m quite sure he wouldn’t be interested in those things, right now, anyway.

I know that I need to be decluttering like crazy .. but for now .. in this time before Christmas … I will just accumulate just a few more things.  I can always pass them along, can’t I?

And the fun that D and I have on our shopping trips is just priceless.  We both appreciate the quality of items from times gone by.  Not for the monetary value but always for the beauty, the care taken of the objects by their former owners.  And we both respect the value of that energy.  And pass it along.

The items that we purchase are things that were actually made by people who cared .. therein lies the beauty.

🙂


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Learning Curves, what would we do without them! And my pal D and I went shopping again!

what a beautiful mirror … in the washroom!

Oh .. .sigh …another learning curve is being encountered in my life .. one of a number, it seems!

The latest one is my new Asus or Acer, or whatever .. computer!  I still have my trusty old $80 Toshiba as a backup.  But .. after hours of losing connectivity and waiting for yet another slow web page to download .. I thought .. argh .. no more.

So … looked at my savings .. and there was nearly enough for a new one.  Discussed with DH … and .. went over to Mother Computers to see what they had.   This is our chosen computer source … we are not computer savvy and leave the details to them … whom we trust!

Ended up with this wonderful, lightweight notebook, has all the bells and whistles. Plus, Windows 8 and an annoying Skype setup.

Tonight I went through the i-manual and have the keyboards functions down pat …. so that is great.  I’m slowly learning how to find my way through the changes.  And wowee … there is a camera in this thing!

That little learning curve is chugging along fine.  As is the Ecological Landscaping course.   Such a formidable wealth of information.  And numbers … I dream of numbers now.  Measuring exactly on grid paper with an architect’s ruler (3 sides).  Could I ever have imagined that I’d be doing this?  No.   But, I’m slowly getting through that hurdle .. or .. gigantic learning curve.

 

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But enough about that .. look at these skies from last week … lovely!

My pal D and I decided to leave the reality of the everyday world and embark on an escape day … which means shopping at some very wonderful thrift stores.  And .. perhaps .. some seaweed gathering .. who knew what the day would bring.

Our shopping started with some little oddities!  Driving down Blanshard (and missing the turn-off that I should have taken) we noticed a boat-laden pickup truck being driven the wrong way … the driver had somehow travelled part way up the highway and ended up in an enclosed area of the road that was cordoned off for road repairs.

This resulted in us driving down another road and saw a dog standing in the middle of the traffic .. luckily not much traffic at this time.  So I parked D went to gently get the dog off the road.  He ran away.  We drove down a side road to find him.  Located him climbing over the low fence of a local yard.  All seemed ok (except .. if this was my dog, he would not be outside!!)

D noticed she’d lost a glove (a new one, right!)  so we retraced our steps …stopped at one place and .. there was a bright purple Purdy’s Chocolate bag .. neatly folded.  However, it hadn’t been there a minute ago.  Strange.

Drove on a bit .. and voila .. there was the lost glove ..now found!

We drove on and on.  Reached our first store.  Spent hours inside, wandering, wondering, considering, choosing.   Found some treasures.  Then .. lunch time!  Found the most wonderful Thai restaurant!!!

 

My yummy lunch

D’s delicious looking lunch

Such a lovely and restful restaurant.  And there were some interesting chairs.  We chose a table with some sparkly plexiglass chairs .. so very pretty and very comfy.  Fun chairs.  Looking around the restaurant, we noticed that there were other styles of chairs also.  In particular, massive carved elephant chairs.  I tried to move one and just couldn’t.   Beautiful, elegant elephant chairs!

What a cozy sight ..

Time was quickly ticking away! How I love that clock ..

Shades of Polar Express! What a great buy this was

We had loads of fun.   Found such a variety of lovely dishes, graceful glasses, useful measuring items (for me and my course) even found this fantastic sleigh bell collar for a horse.  What a deal and I just love this.  Perfect for Christmas and perfect for the garden.

We had such a wonderful time going to the thrift shops!

And then I wanted to write about it .. but.. learning curves and photos didn’t mix.  Kept losing my photos in the Gallery .. so finally downloaded them into our desk computer!  Sigh.

Guess learning curves are just little challenges sent our way so that we can expand our horizons.  Work hard.  Perhaps some frustration (it’s math, for me!)  And the lovely feeling that arrives when the curves are past .. and the path is forthright.  Until the next curve!
Anyway .. I do like my new laptop.   And it’s ever so helpful for my course ..
So .. nighty night .. enjoy a lovely relaxing evening .. and I will try to write more about our shopping trip tomorrow.  And perhaps a little about my landscaping field trip today.  And .. more oak leaves gathered!

🙂

 


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Taking advantage of the rainy Saturday to just putter around the yard and just plain enjoying being outside

Sunday, June 17, 2012

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Saturday .. a mix of rain ..and clouds.   Outside for a little bit.  The day was for puttering around.  Not a day for massive amounts of work.

I like these kinds of days.  Time to relax, be creative.  Perfect opportunity to just focus on some little things to do.  Those things that get cast aside when the urge to work hard and dig and move hits me.

So yesterday I took advantage of this little window of fun.  Started off by putting more empty pots in a container .. to be washed out and either given away or recycled.

Next, time to clear off my little outdoor working table.   It’s one of those white plastic patio tables that I bought many years ago at Sears during a Saturday sale.  The umbrella is long gone .. but the usefulness of the table lives on.  Just the perfect size and weight so that I can easily move around the yard for my various projects.   The legs are easily undone and the unit stored away when not needed.

A quick scrub and a rinse with the hose and the table’s surface is proper again.

The rain continues … it changes from a light mist, moves on to a drizzle and then pours down.  Oh, it feels wonderful to be outside at this time.  Nice and cosy.  I tuck my i-Pod and camera into one of those new little clear plastic storage boxes, purchased at Canadian Tire yesterday.  Handy little things, these are and perfect for the rain.

First chore … is to finally pot up some miniature rose plants …. gifts from the Christmas season.  Nicely watered with EM and time for them to be planted in some real soil, instead of the shredded coconut fibre that they were packed in.  So now they are sitting pretty in some cheerful blue coloured round garden pots.  Did I hear a sigh of relief as their roots settled into real soil?  Or was that just my imagination???   🙂

Well, I feel better anyway!

Then, time to pot up some flax seeds.   These have a good history to them.   And a special importance.  They are from a collection belonging to a person who was quite ardent in permaculture, in recycling, in all the healthy and non-pollutant ways of living.

I was lucky enough to ask for and receive one of the packets of flax at her service earlier this year.   And promised to share these with friends.   I’d originally intended to repackage the seeds into several small envelopes, but, seeing that I’d inadvertently left a lot of my seeds outside (oops)… it was time to just plant them the best way that I could.  Thus the little pots.  Once they start to grow a bit more … then it will be time to share them.  And for me to plant some in my yard.   Positive memories and inspiration for the future.

During some breaks in the rain, I wandered around the yard, admiring the beautiful crystal clear droplets of water that bejewelled the leaves and flowers.  Such decadent beauty.

Finding more garlic scapes (they will keep on growing after I’ve broken off the scapes) .. .and gathered them all up.  Yum …. more garlic pesto!!

Looking forward to harvesting the garlic .. that will be just so much fun, like Christmas morning!

Just last October, I’d reshaped the garlic bed and carefully planted lots and lots of these wonderful bulbs.   And now, with the lovely mulched soil, lots of EM and a healthy topping of seaweed .. I have a true garlic forest!

Stopped for a while and watched the little Chestnut-Backed Chickadees foraging for insects and spiders in the white lilac tree.  Loving their little nasal chirps.  Wonder where the Red-Breasted Nuthatches are …. as these two travel together, or so I’m told.

Looking forward to the new baby Bushtits.  Last fall & winter there were so many in the yard.  Then spring arrived and there was one couple .. so I was wondering where they might have set up a nest in the yard.   There are plenty of places around our yard for them to set up a little home.

Spent some time just relaxing outside, enjoying the peace and quiet, the sounds of the birds.  The sounds of the raindrops pelting the leaves.  Breathing in the wonderful earthy smell of the wet ground around me.  Utterly content.

🙂