Category Archives: Doings

Just Keep Blooming

And the day came when the risk to remain tight in a bud was more painful than the risk it took to blossom.

…..Anais Nin

I took a cutting 4 years ago from a rose-bush that was grown from a cutting 40 years ago which originally came from a 100 year old rose-bush. We should all bloom like this.

yellow rose bud

rose bush, yellow

Taste Test

The first meal from the garden!! Red lettuce salad with chive vinegar dressing. YUM!


The Garden


A garden is always a series of losses set against a few triumphs, like life itself.

—May Sarton

Maybe that’s why I love gardening so much. A metaphor for life.  My life. As a child, I loved my father’s gardens. The fall was beautiful, the beds were filled with chrysanthemums, his favourite.  This year as a retiree, gardening has become less of a pretty  hobby ( can we say only flowers) and become a passion.


After my second retirement, I was talked into doing a maternity leave at our local food bank. When  resource development is your gig , you have to finely craft your message  and marketing. You need to really understand what you will be talking about. I learned quickly about food security. This has turned me into a passionate “farmer”!  ….the funny thing is…. when I graduated high school I wanted to hitchhike across Europe looking for a pastoral lifestyle to embrace.

So today I have the pastoral lifestyle and the means to learn to produce from my space. What fun.


I have added a greenhouse, and an  indoor area for starting seed early, built large raised beds as well as rototilled the back area by the creek to plant potatoes.  I am now channelling my Irish ancestors and tilling a very large potato crop. I have over 60 plants yielding 2.2 to 6 kilo each. Never one to  embrace moderation I over planted seeds inside and now have 30 tomato plants, 20 pepper plants, and enough squash plants to make my neighbors run for cover. I asked friends to come and shop for free in my greenhouse.

So far I have put squash out too early, we had a light frost.  The potato patch is huge and now that the plants are up I know I will have more that we can eat; potatoes.  I have squash planted everywhere. I am counting on global warming to help all my tomato and pepper plants!  I am not sure how to companion plant…will learn as I go. I am putting this year down to a “learning curve” what works, what doesn’t , and how to fix it. Just like my life.


I still do love the flowers, and natural garden,  like hope it is enduring.

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I Didn’t Do It

When you realize why all your felt pens are dried up!


Happy 150th Birthday Alice In Wonderland

“And what is the use of a book,” thought Alice, “without pictures or conversation?”


I love Alice in Wonderland. I loved it as a child, I loved it more as a teenager in the 60’s with Grace Slick singing White Rabbit. I loved reading it out loud; as opposed to Winnie the Pooh, who I abhorred. Curiously, today just happened to be an “Alice” day

It was a treat listening to Exposing the curious world of Alice in Wonderland on the Sunday Edition with Michael Enright on CBC.

Interestingly  “After the Bible and Shakespeare, Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland is the most widely quoted book in the Western world. It has been translated into at least 174 languages.”

Michael interviewed, Alice’s granddaughter and David Day the Canadian author of Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland Decoded. It was fascinating.51VomRKbi8L._SX354_BO1,204,203,200_

What was even greater fun was that  I was listening in my car on the way to the flea market. My first find there was “The Annotated Alice” 1960 edition. I bought it for a dollar.

I remember playing my first computer game on our brand new Apple 2e in 1983. It was Fahrenheit 451 and to move through the game you had to quote Alice In Wonderland. My daughter was much better at it then I was. I would kill to have that game again. (keep going to flea markets)

My daughter, granddaughter, and I have quite a few versions of Alice in Wonderland. We love collecting new or old editions with different illustrators. The blog Brain Pickings has a post on the best illustrated versions. I just ordered this one .



And oh…..I am not late….I am on Oxford time, a pun from from the book. Love it.

Flea Market Redux


I am lucky. We only have one flea market in town, very few real antique stores and only about 5 used/second-hand stores. I frequent them all on a regular basis. I love the concept of recycle/upcycle/world doesn’t need another toaster. Today was a good day at the flea market. The vendors are such a cast of characters. I love them all.

Look at this beautiful vintage hand embroidered piece, nicely framed and read the sentiments around the garden, perfect for me. What a beautiful meditation.


Next a stained glass framed hummingbird. Will go perfect in the kitchen window to keep birds from flying into it.


An upcycled piece, perfect to hang in a tree.


AND the best boho find ever!IMG_8540

It’s a poncho, Pendleton fabric (wool), with a howling wolf in leather. It will make an awesome wall hanging, a go to meeting blanket or just sitting by the fire-pit.

Great day of shopping.

Save A Butterfly

Butterfly on milkweed

I planted a milkweed last year for the first time. I wanted to see if it would survive in our Zone 3. It was disappointing in the spring because there was no plant. Well it surprised me and survived. We do not have monarch butterflies here, but we do have butterflies and they are beautiful as well and they do like my milkweed. I am going to plant more this fall.

I  signed the Monarch Manifesto below for the monarch butterflies


My pledge for monarch butterflies.

I commit to:

  1. GROW milkweed and other native wildflowers in my yard and/or on my balcony
  2. REPORT monarch butterfly sightings in my community using #monarchwatch
  3. AVOID using pesticides or herbicides in my yard or garden
  4. CONTACT at least one school, faith group, business or other institution in my neighbourhood about planting a butterfly garden
  5. CALL local garden centres and nurseries to ask them to order native milkweed plants for next spring

Barn Art (part two)

We finished painting the potting shed door. Everyone got to pick a bird so we have a parrot, a canary, an owl and “robin in the rain” to live in the garden of recycled flowers. Of course “Mr. sun has to shine down.


Plein Air Painting

IMG_8418 IMG_8417 Peinture Sur le Motif

Flea Market!


I’m late, I’m late!






Barn Art!

Marché aux puces


Burl art, signed 1997

Since I was small I have been enamoured with flea markets. new to you tables. garage sales, second-hand stores and especially second-hand book stores.

I can spend all day hunting for treasures. I learned thrift (what a beautiful word) from my mother “one man’s trash is another man’s treasure” , also from my daughter who told me “the world doesn’t need another toaster”

My first apartment was completely furnished in flea market, 2nd hand, hand me downs. Even the piano was used.

For all you thrifters, happy hunting.  Remember, it’s not a bargain if you don’t need it, and you never “save a lot of money, spending money you ain’t got”