Tuesday, 21 July 2015

Blogging Hiatus

Too darn busy, or lazy, or – maybe just out of inspiration lately. Caught in the humdrum, as it were. Anyway, here I am.

Spring was kind of miserable, after all, and that doesn’t sit well with me. Another of my favourite trees at the cottage has bit the dust – our double birch, which has been ailing off-and-on for a number of years, has finally thrown in the towel. We’ll probably take it down next year, or in the fall. So sad to see it go! And glad we planted a tamarack in the hollow near the old place, when we did.
Less shade, too - glad we have lots of insulation.
The big tamarack that we had to take down in the winter has yielded a lot of wood, and given Iain an on-going project with the chopping that needs to be done.
I'm a lumberjack, and I'm okay...

Our dishwasher at home died, so we decided it was time to get all the appliances for the cottage at the same time.
Two problems: a) they aren't that lovely Harvest Gold we were enjoying for so many years; and 2) we can't rely on this refrigerator to heat the cottage for us on cool days (we used to refer to the old one as "The Reheaterator").
Nice to have the kitchen finished off.
Having a dishwasher is SO SWEET!
Did I mention that Sis gave me a beautiful bird feeder for Christmas? I love it!
When the sun hits it, the relections off the glass are beautiful!
My Aunt Eileen and Uncle Wilbert celebrated their 60th wedding anniversary! We were blessed to be able to celebrate with them.
Aunt Doris, Mom, Aunt Eileen, Uncle Wilbert
We have been at the cottage as much as possible.
Mom kicking back.
And we go in to see Sheila as much as we can, too.
Isn't she a lovely lady? We think so!
Her garden is so relaxing!
Her Honeysuckle is always gorgeous!

Saturday, 16 May 2015

I haven’t disappeared off the face of the earth…

Too many distractions, I guess, but still I was shocked to see I hadn’t posted any ramblings since the end of March! So here’s an update:

We were at the cottage for Easter weekend. It was, unfortunately pretty cold, but we had a good time anyway.
I love the way the sun heats the leaves so they melt into the snow in perfect outlines.
We saw lots of sunken leaves.

Lots of puddles but very little open water.
We had a nice turkey dinner – you can’t go wrong with that!

We scared out a few deer on the cottage road.
On the next weekend the office girls went to the Women’s show in Ottawa, and had fun – but this is probably our last trip there for a while. Next time it’s shopping all the way! We did stop at a few stores this time as well, but I have a hankering to spend a day at Ikea, sometime.

Onyx loves to nap in the sun, where he can keep an eye on the feeder.
Stitches was exhausted from her trip to the vet, and curled up under the covers for the afternoon.
We made a quick trip to the lake near the end of April, just to drop off a few items, and the lake was wide open!
Ah, open water! Hooray!
We got back to the lake at the beginning of May, and the weather was much better. We worked outside most of the weekend, getting things in order; and my camera didn’t even come out for a minute, since I was so busy!

Last weekend we did the annual Yard and Bake Sale at the church.

Stuff really sold - the table is pretty picked-over at this point.
Fun, as always, but I am glad to not have to hit the baking aisle again for a while.

Monday, 23 March 2015

A Busy Weekend

Oh, so nice to get away to the lake for a couple of days, and even nicer when joined in so doing by fun people! Carl, Irene, Dodie, and Myles all stayed with us, and we had the usual wonderful time!
Friday night snacks and martinis, and so happy to have Joann and Kerri for a visit. This week is Dodie’s birthday, and Joann brought a gift and cake for her. Quite yummy too!
Saturday we started with coffee and muffins, a slow wake up. Then a heartier breakfast of beautiful eggs with hollandaise sauce, ham, and english muffins, which gave us energy for the big “cut down the dead tamarack” project.
I’d been afraid to do this – was hoping to have a professional come in – but Iain convinced me that with some help from his friends it would come down safely. Kevin, who is an incredibly handy man with a saw, just happened to be at his cottage this weekend, so Iain enlisted his help, and he made short work of it.  Iain had tied a rope up as high as he could, and he, Carl, and Myles all went onto the ice and pulled on it to guide the tree fall.


We ended up with a nice pile of wood out of it, though I understand it burns very hot, so we’ll have to be careful using it. Thanks and hat tips to all the guys for their hard work!
Iain just about wore himself out cutting this up! Good thing he had help.
Since we’ve lost two trees already to the pine borer (it was a different bug that killed the tamarack), I’m hoping it isn’t too late for our one remaining young pine. I put tanglefoot around the base of it, hoping to snag any pine borers that try to climb it. If they already went up last year, though, it’ll not do any good. Fingers crossed!
Die insects, die!
The snow that fell Saturday was sticky, and perfect for snowballs! We girls tried to hit Roger’s stop sign, but were all pretty bad shots, so Iain gave us a larger target.
I couldn't even hit it when I had the bigger target...
I noticed that the snow on the old place seemed to be concentrated in the centre of the roof, and I was puzzled as to why it was melted around the edges only. Then, I realized that the inside of the cottage is so darn cold, it is keeping the snow from melting. Not too cold for the mice, though. I did a cursory inspection and found they’d made a mess of at least one blanket and the drawers have lots of nice mouse poo in them. Yucky. Lots of cleaning to do once things warm up, and so much for the mouse repellents keeping them away.
You can tell we've had a lot of snow melt already, because there was about 2 ft. of snow on it last time we were up.
Saturday night we had broiled pork chops. The original plan had been for barbeque, but the cold snap changed our plans. After dinner we relaxed and Iain took us through a little role-playing exercise, which was a lot of fun!
When we went to bed, there were plenty of gorgeous stars visible – a great way to fall asleep!
Sunday: Carl and Irene treated us to a pancake breakfast; so good, I ate 5 pancakes (well, they weren’t huge, okay?) and several sausages. After breakfast it was clean-up time and we all headed home. That was a great weekend.

Sunday, 15 March 2015

Just Some Cat Pics

Onyx and Snaps!
Onyx is STILL over-grooming obsessively. The fur on this back and head and tail (anywhere he can’t easily reach with his tongue) is soft and healthy-looking. He has a vet visit in a couple of weeks (check-up time), and we’ll see if there are any ideas there.
That little blue fish is his favourite toy, of late.
He seems very happy and healthy, and his appetite never fails; but I think he is bored. Wendy was home with him most of the time, and he was an only cat, which meant he got a lot of attention – a lot more than we have time for, both working full time and having three other cats to attend to. I make an extra effort to entertain him, but I know it falls short.
Snaps is becoming more of a lap cat, which is nice – I like a cat that curls up and keeps you warm. There’s plenty of him to love, as you can see in the picture. I’m guessing he weighs about 15 pounds, and that may be missing on the light side.
Our gorgeous orange baby!
They play together, but they don’t cuddle; Onyx like to stretch out in front of the fireplace on his own. Occasionally he’ll sit on my lap, but not often. I was really surprised last week when he leapt onto our friend Tom’s lap to get some pets!

Monday, 23 February 2015

A Weekend

Going to the lake for a weekend is such a nice change, during the winter months. This is one of the coldest Februaries ever, and still we were glad to go.
Since we only stayed until Sunday afternoon, we didn’t plan to do much. We did have company on Friday night – so good to see our cousin Jo again, and she was kind enough to bring us some homemade doughnuts! They didn’t last the whole weekend.
On Saturday we dragged ourselves out for a short walk, and it was all I wanted. Slogging along a skidoo track isn’t quite as easy as walking on a plowed road.
On Eldon's and Janice's driveway.
Very little wildlife was in evidence this weekend. Besides birds, we saw nothing: no squirrels, chipmunks, or any other mammals. With the deep cold we’ve been having, they must be staying close to their homes.
On our walk we did see where someone, possibly a chipmunk, has a nicely sheltered spot. They tunnel underground for their homes, so this would have just been where an entrance-way was situated. Otherwise, it could have been some other animal, but I don’t know what.
Hello in there...

One of last year’s nests is still standing up well. I like the way it is full of little ribbons.

When we got up on Sunday morning, everything was covered in fresh snow.

The pile of snow on the neighbour’s table makes us wonder: Is there something under it that makes it pile so high, or is that all snow?
Of course, it COULD be all snow. It really has snowed that much.

Relaxing in the morning with lots of coffee and goodies, we watched the Chickadees enjoy the seeds and suet. We also had visits from a couple of Blue Jays, a White Breasted Nuthatch and a Red Breasted Nuthatch, and a Woodpecker – I think Dodie said it was a Downy.
I like the way this little guy looks in the window.
I’m already looking forward to going up again next month!

Monday, 16 February 2015

Cold, Cold, Cold

That pretty much sums up the winter thus far. We’ve been staying inside lots, recovering from various ailments (colds, infections).
The highlights:
It’s so nice to finally have birds at the feeder. They have really enjoyed eating the Scott’s Wild Finch & Small Songbird mix.

Seriously, this stuff is the best. It’s expensive, but it doesn’t go to waste.
We’ve had Goldfinches,
and Redpolls!
The cats enjoy sitting in the window, where they can see the birds but not disturb them.
Snaps is a big cat, but so skittish – here is his “should I run away?” face.
The other big highlight of January was having the chance to tour some houses with my cousins as they consider the possibility of moving to town. We looked at a variety of places, including this one where I couldn’t resist checking out the bar. It met with my approval!
At the beginning of February we helped a little with Kyle’s move to his new digs. This is the view from the dining room. I think on a clear day he may be able to see Parliament Hill.

Wednesday, 7 January 2015

Winter has settled in

The quiet cold of the lake and woods on a winter day: this picture pretty much sums it up, for me.

I have to say that I love this shot.