Wednesday, September 30, 2015

Cleaning house

Finally had my laser eye surgery, yesterday.  I was out last night and the halos around the lights are almost gone. I am so relieved as I feared that I would never be able to drive again at night.

This morning we got up and I took a look around my house.  It is filthy.  There is no other word for it.  All of the places that looked okay before, I can now see clearly.  We were out for grocery shopping today and bought four more Magic Erasers, to augment the two I have here now.  I think the whole weekend will be devoted to house cleaning.

And I worry about things in bed at night.  Last night it was the fact that Beth is coming and Beth uses a portion-based coffee machine and I don't have one, so will have to buy one for Beth.  And then in daylight, thought, Beth can make do with my French Press, but I am willing to buy a bit of coffee for her. Some nice Columbian Supremo and maybe she'll let me have a cup.  Cathy may just like a cup too, so I guess it will have to be a slightly bigger bag.

Monday, September 28, 2015

No night watching here...

Although I knew all about the event and that it would not be repeated until sometime in 2030, I did not witness the Super Blood Moon Eclipse last night.  But I'm really happy that you and Dave did. And Cathy I can't help but think of your 180 degree visibility to sky watch - did you see it?  Also, I heard that Winnipeg and surrounding areas were THE place to get the best view. The Moon has been shining brightly these last few nights and because I leave both my windows open with curtains up, I often get the brightness during the night as it moves around the sky. It is nice and I don't mind.
We have been mostly nonstop here at the production line called the kitchen (and front room where the tables are set up) Everything is being done - dehydrated apples, crabapple sauce, sauerkraut, pickled peppers, salsa - all at once!  And I have also been winterizing outside- yesterday I did the small greenhouse - taping and shoring up the sides and installing the electric cord for the spring and heating. The big greenhouse is in need of some extra attention this year so must get at it sooner than later.
Tomorrow we drive to Midland as Harry was successful with the latest Coin Auction which ended last night.  I desperately would like to make an appt to get my haircut but can't seem to find a day that hasn't already been fully booked for me haha!. Also next Monday our car goes into the garage for three days on a recall from GM. They said they would have a loaner for us so hoping that will be the case.
Well, in anticipation of another busy day tomorrow, I better go to bed and lay there all night as seems to be the norm lately. Take care

Sunday, September 27, 2015

Up later tonight

We spent some time watching the lunar eclipse tonight.  David got out an old pair of binoculars, and it made a world of difference.   The colour of the moon during the total eclipse was interesting--gold, and red and almost a purple.  Glad we did it.

Exciting times---for someone

Cathy, I sometimes think you have more adventures than any of us.  You even get to interact with people on a regular basis!  And you even get to see your grand baby--as a baby.  I can't remember what that was like.

Yesterday was my alcohol ink workshop, and for some reason, I came away a little dis-satisfied.  I had taken the workshop last spring and had to leave for a couple of hours in the middle of it.  My hope was that I would come away with the knowledge of how to make landscapes that I missed last time.  Didn't happen.  Thinking about it I realize that the instructor had moved on in her own journey and the class she taught yesterday reflected the direction her work has taken--as it should.  So, maybe the flaw is in me.  This left me thinking about what I had wanted to accomplish by taking yet another workshop.  Oh, oh--too much thinking isn't good for me.

Today was to have been the get-together of my ATC group.  I had one of the worst nights ever, at one point waking to pain indicative of a severe bladder infection. Shortly after getting up I realized that the ATC meeting was just not going to happen.

Yesterday I was confused about the time my class started and got there an hour early, even the building was locked.  So David and I went over to a small, sort of sad, Farmers' Market a couple of blocks away.  David bought two tomatoes and a huge bag of green beans, just for me.  Today we had to freeze the beans.  The money we spent on the beans, two hours of labour for both of us, and I ended up with 7 servings of beans.  But I know I'll enjoy them.

But now it's time for my nap.  Actually, it's time for me to lay down before I fall asleep sitting up.

Saturday, September 26, 2015

Saturday and both at home

Jim finished hauling yesterday.  It is short, but very intense with 12 - 13 hour days.  I took him to work yesterday and picked him up about 5:30 after the wind up.   It was still going strong when we left.  I even got to have a beer.  They seemed like a nice crew.  Jim has just gone into town to put a bit of gas into Al's truck and clean it up a bit.  Al didn't want the tank full since it will be sitting for 6 months while they are in Texas.  Since today is pay day I have been going over bills.  It always excites me when I actually have more money than bills (for this week anyway)  It's like having money!!!  I am still not sure when my office will get done at work.  The plan was to get the rest of the office all set up and then do me, but that means having the furniture movers come back and the IT people to move the computers twice.  I think, if no one says anything, they will cover my computer with plastic and when all is done, the construction guys will re-assemble my office . Right  now I have 1/2 a desk with my computer, 2 monitors and all my paper work on it.  I keep my phone on a stool beside the desk.  AND Flies everywhere.  The doors and windows at the office are always open and at home I think they live in the walls.  And yes, the van will live on.  We have way too much time, energy and money invested.  and I want to use it as a camper at least once.  Even if it is only behind the quonset. When Jim gets  back we will drop off Al's truck and then head back into town to do our own running around.  I didn't want to use Al's truck in case something happened.  It was hard enough having Jim use it just for a few days (NICE truck.   all the bells and whistles)

Friday, September 25, 2015

Just a really fine day

The day was very enjoyable. I was up to North Bay and at Mike's by 8 am. He was not home from work yet but Erin was up and had made a delicious egg casserole dish for breakfast - hot from the oven, and the coffee was on. Once home, Mike joined us and we had a wee visit, decided what was needed to fix his shirts, and then he was off to bed. The sewing went fine - a few little glitches but all was well at the end. I was gone by 1130 am. I was encouraging Erin to do some sewing as she was expressing a desire and interest. She has a Brother machine that her sister gave her when she had upgraded. We talked about a few little projects that she might try. When Mike called here around 4 pm once he got up, he said she was at the table sewing. She was making a hot pad and had gone to the store to buy the batting for it. I say, good on her, and I shall continue to encourage her the best I can.
Anyway, after a really full and busy week, I now feel drained. I plan to go to bed early, and hopefully get some sleep - been tough again this week tossing and turning and watching the clock tick slowly forward but little sleep.
Here's to a good weekend for us all. Take care

Thursday, September 24, 2015

A real tale to be sure....

It seems that Al really stepped up on this one. You are right , what would you do without such good neighbours. I have met your neighbour, and I have seen your van, so I was able to picture him screaming into your driveway, feet pumping away, and hoping for the best......Is he a mechanic? You told me what he did (before retiring) but I forget now. Your new truck is quite reliable, though, for you to be driving back and forth, right Cathy?
Harry showed me some pictures of Kris and Chloe at the camp ground that he found on Facebook (and one of Chloe eating a messy mess!). She really is growing and I see so much of Kris in her face - am I right, does she resemble him?
Anyway, here I am waiting for another loaf of raisin bread to bake. This time though I shall be taking it to Mike and Erin tomorrow. I have a sewing date there to remodel his work shirts to make them fit better. He gets off work at 0745 am and home by 8 am so asks if I could be there by then so we could have a coffee together before he goes to bed - he is on another long stretch of nights. Erin will be off tomorrow so she and I will quietly be doing his shirts (2 of them) and hopefully won't disturb him too much. I have all my sewing gear packed in the car now ready for an early start. I am hoping it will go smoothly without too much in the way of problems.  Think happy thoughts for me haha ! Take care 

Oh, Cathy!

 You'll be laughing at this some day, but probably not for a week or so. Are you planning a wake for the van, or do you have hopes of full recovery, even if not until next spring?

Wednesday, September 23, 2015

one step forward.....

Kris and family were camping at sprucewoods on Monday night so Jim got off work early and we went down to see them .  Chloe is getting so grown up!  we made the mistake of telling them our camper was all fixed and ready to go.. The next morning the van blew a tire.  Jim called me and I picked him up and took him to work.  Our wonderful neighbour (yet again) saw the van on the side of the road and offered to change the tire and bring the van home.  Poor Al!! first of all, the spare was 3/4 flat and he had to go home and get his portable compresser to pump it up.  When he was checking he noted that the tire, when it blew, split the brake cable. great.   then he tried to drive it to our yard.  Smoke started to spew from the steering wheel.  He stopped and fiddled and tried again and got it going.  Of course, to go to his house he goes down a hill and then up a hill to his driveway. To our house you turn as you are going down the hill.  OKAY!!  two feet on the non functioning brake and pray.  Yes!! Into the yard and get the F****** out of the way to the dogs.  He stayed for 15 minutes to make sure it didn/t  burn up.. Disconect the battery.  Oh look.... there are burnt wires here!  He came over when I got home to tell me the bad news.  Jim had arranged a ride back to our corner and  I was supposed to pick him up.  Al went (with a beer) to get him.  AND THEN!!!! He offered Jim his truck to drive until he is finished work.  Today, to surprise us, he came over to fix the wiring.  OOOPS.  Not a hope.  There were over 4 wires fused together and lots of melted wires.  We should never have told Sandi that the van was good to go. Al says he can fix it, but he doesn't have time right now.  Not until they get back from Texas next April!!!  We have good neighbours and I feel bad that he has tried to do so much and had so much trouble.  I have bought a lottery ticket.  Winning is my only hope.  And how is your week going? 


Going through Mom's box I found several recipes with different names, that are actually the same thing.  There were several for what I would call Walnut bars.  Several again for Chocolate Slice, or Custard Bars, for what we now call Nanaimo Bars. The term Nanaimo Bars is not that old, and I have also seen it labelled New York slice, but these recipes were quite old, and in Mom's handwriting.  Many of her recipes have someone else's name attached.( Edna's Cookies anyone??) But I also found that the box was fairly empty. I guess all of us have gone through it at some point, and taken what we wanted.

We are in shock.  I have an appointment today to be assessed for foot orthotics ( custom insoles).  I had these before, but evidently the knee replacements change my pressure pattern, and/or gait pattern, and new ones are necessary. Got an appointment reminder call yesterday, and told that I would have to be prepared to pay half today--and then she mentioned the amount--the deposit alone is more than the total cost for a set three years ago.  So here goes the plastic money again, and some serious adjustments to pay it off--just two months after we finally paid it off last time.

But I read in today's paper about how much the falling loonie is affecting, and will be affecting further, the cost of consumer goods.  You both have said that you have already felt the pinch.  Here's to living on a fixed income!  David was reading the stock market report and telling me all about the problems with Volkswagen, expressing comfort in the fact that we don't own any Volkswagen stock,  Not that we own any stock, of any sort, but he reads the report daily, anyway.  

Tuesday, September 22, 2015

Recipe box hunting

I love my recipe box - almost a history of life. You tempted me to search for a recipe written by Mom - I have a few but not like you described. I found one called Waldorf Slice. Have you ever made this - or remember it from home?
Working in the yard again today - nice weather so trying to get ahead of the usual cleanup "panic". I just came in for a grilled cheese sandwich on raisin bread. Now to eat!! And I'll chase it with a chocolate chip cookie!

Monday, September 21, 2015


I didn't remember that game, and have only the barest memory of it now. But I do remember that we usually felt that we had had fun!  I remember a party that Mom planned for me.  We took the bus up to where Jubilee more or less meets Churchill Drive, and then hiked home along the river bank--in about 3 feet of snow.  That one wasn't fun.  But she made a special dessert that I liked as a cake for me.  Thinking about it sent me to Mom's recipe box, but I couldn't find anything that even vaguely resembled it.  I think it had a graham wafer type base, and then what was almost a heavy chocolate mousse-type filling--heavy enough to cut into squares.  I'll have to take a look through my box, but I don't remember having anything like it.  I wonder if it came from a recipe book she might have had. 

Party games

And do you remember the game where you pass a wrapped box around while the music plays. Whoever has the box when the music stops gets to open it..... but it is another wrapped box. And so the game continues.  I will always remember being the winner - can't remember whose party it was, but I won a tin of Laveners English Fruit Lozenges. We had few parties for our boys, doing the "family thing" instead.  But I can see where times have changed and maybe what Amber is doing really is much less stressful.  I think I would be more worried about what sorts of gifts are the norm these days ( and how expensive it gets when you have to send your child to many such partys). 
I am just waiting for the bread machine to complete its cycle and produce a delicious perfectly baked loaf of raisin bread.  I only put it on after 5 pm tonight so I have been putting in time until it bakes. 10 more minutes and I'll take it out but in meantime, the smell is driving me crazy!  Take care.

Sunday, September 20, 2015

I can't wrap my head around this--well sort of

Talking to Amber yesterday, and she was telling me about Jessica's birthday party. They have rented a suite at the CanadInn, and are planning a sleep over with up to eight people.  All eight will have access to the pool, and they can invite two more to the pool part of it, but those two won't be able to stay over night.  No frills like loot bags.

She was also telling me about tentative plans for Samantha to take her friends to a movie.  For a price, there is a a special room where you can eat cake, (that can be provided or take your own, plates etc are all laid out and ready, even a knife to cut the cake) and deal with gifts, and maybe even loot bags.  Just before the movie starts you are taken to your reserved seats, and they bring popcorn and drinks for everyone.

Reminds me of one of our trips when we stayed in a hotel in Minot, with a big indoor pool and lots of area around it, and many rooms with straight access to the pool surround.  We were there on a Saturday, and several of the pool-side rooms had been rented for the day ( not over night) for children's birthday parties.

I also remember birthday parties when we were young.  You went to someone's house bearing gifts, played bingo for about half an hour for little token prizes, ate cake, and went home.  

I'm almost glad to have been through it all years ago, but realize, that for stressed out moms, some of these arranged things are the easiest way to do it.  Unfortunately such arrangements become the norm, and the children learn to expect it.


I sent this yesterday,but for some reason blogger saved it as a draft

The workshop is on the use of alcohol inks.  These require a shiny, impermeable surface, and the tiles work well.  I'm hoping to learn how to make a landscape, which, by the nature of the inks, will be somewhat abstract.  I will then use some of the rubber stamps I have ( mainly of trees), on top of the inks.  I'm hoping to end up with a few coasters or trivets.  I have no idea what I'll do with them, once I have them, though.

My friend, Gail, was planning to use the inks to put colour on some of the stainless steel and silver plate cutlery she re-purposes to make jewelery, but I don't know if she ever did.

Giving in to temptation

I was outside doing yard work, and thinking about ....what would make you feel happy right now?....Voila! They are in the oven baking this very moment. Chocolate Chip cookies, of course!  So I shall have one or two ( yeah, right!) and then head out again to continue . It is a coolish but sunny day. There was frost on the roofs this morning but it was not ground frost so nothing was in danger,
Just thought I would let you know what I was up to ...oink!oink!

Saturday, September 19, 2015

I do want to ask.....

Every time I go into ReStore, I travel to the tile shelves and handle (I was going to write fondle but thought better of it haha) the different tiles and wonder what I could do with them..... I love them- so many sizes and finishes.  Now I am anxious for your followup description of this art workshop. I can hardly wait.


I certainly think the depression plays a role in all of this, especially if weeping is the primary emotion you experience.  My depression-related weeping catches me unexpectedly, usually when I'm tired and alone in front of the computer in a slightly darkened room--such as when I play poker.  But when it's in response to a specific, identifiable stimulus, I tend to believe it's a natural response to something that has honestly affected you.  

Lately, I've also found myself laughing more, as well. And you say that you are responding to things you find beautiful.  That is something that evokes an emotion or a memory that is deeply personal.  You also say this happens "when you allow it to", which speaks to a lessening of inhibitions.  Not that this is bad!  I'm almost glad to see it in me, after spending most of my life trying to maintain an even keel. 

Yesterday was quite an adventure.  We were up at 6:30 (obscene!) for a 7:30 doctor's appointment ( both of us).  We both finally got into two adjacent examining rooms, when he puts on his coat and announces he off to an appointment a couple of blocks away and will be back as soon as he can.  He tells me thatI can have the occasional drink with my Tylenol, gives me the prescriptions I've requested, sends me for blood work and is off to see David, for whom he makes a couple of referrals. First a stop  on the main floor of the building to obtain resting hand splints.  When I asked the woman if Blue Cross would cover any of the cost, she cheerfully said no, but Manitoba health will cover the entire cost for you.  Then, we're off and running.  Downtown to make an appointment for new foot orthotics--for which I've been waiting ever since I started this knee replacement journey.  Then to the  art supply store to buy supplies for next weekends workshop.  Then to WalMart to drop off prescriptions--whoops, the pharmacist is on break and we have to wait a couple of hours to pick them up.  Then off to Tim's for breakfast.  Home  a few minutes and then off to the ReStore for more workshop supplies ( small glazed ceramic tiles--don't ask),and then to deliver me to a meeting of the art group I have become involved with.  Finally he picks me up from the meeting and it's back to WalMart for the pills.  Neither of us is used to this frenzy of activity.  We're too old for this!!

Thursday, September 17, 2015

I don't know either...

I figure that I, too, am experiencing more episodes of showing my emotions just because I am allowing myself to do so, but most often when alone (or with the dog)  eg maybe down at the lake when I see the beauty around me, or think of something, I sometimes will find myself a bit weepy - or is this just plain depression showing it's ugly face haha!! I'd like to think not. 
I feel appreciative of small things and look for the positive of situations more than I ever did before and I think this is also a sign of being able to express one's emotions more freely (but again usually with myself). But you raise an interesting subject. Maybe I need to think about this more? 

Tuesday, September 15, 2015


I've had three experiences lately where I became emotional about something I saw or read.  I'm wondering if these were legitimate emotions or if my age is making me less inhibited.

The first was a book  "A Finer End" by Deborah Crombie.  It was basically one in a series of "who-dun-its" she has written.  The locale was Glastonbury in England the site of a huge abbey that was destroyed during the reign of Henry VIII, and Glastonbury Tor, an ancient Druid, or earlier, place of worship.  Her characterizations were so good that I found myself totally empathizing with the people, and the situations they found themselves in.  I found it a very powerful book.

Next was an episode of Dr; Phil--I know, I know, but hear me out.  It was a very private interview ( not in front of an audience) between him and a young woman who had been attacked and had her 7 month fetus taken from her. The interview concerned how she has coped emotionally with the situation and how she views herself, and her future, in view of it. I almost wept.  What strength to see in a very young, fragile appearing woman!

Then tonight, we went to see the movie "The Gift".  The  reviews have been excellent, but have also hinted that, although on the surface it appears to be an old reliable stalker movie, it is anything but.  Wow!  I felt totally e meshed with a couple of the characters, and equally surprised at where the plot took us.  And some of the acting blew me away.

I don't know where I'm heading with all of this.  I guess that being somewhat "normal", and leading somewhat "normal" lives is perhaps something to be thankful for.

Sunday, September 13, 2015

Wouldn't you just know it...

I just broke half a tooth off eating my popcorn. Oh boy! I have an appointment already booked for Oct 24 so hope I can hang on 'til then.

Popcorn anyone?

Just walked the dog up to the Lottery Store - no I did not win, but Harry had some scratch tickets to turn in - he won just enough to buy some more. I had an urge to make some popcorn, so I just pulled out the old machine, and now have a big bowl ready for my eating pleasure.  Actually the bag of kernels I used is maybe a bit old, but I smothered the popped corn with butter and some salt, so should be good enough to enjoy.
I have worked around the house today, upstairs cleaning up from dehydrating yesterday, and downstairs trying to organize the boxes of jars I tore apart to get jars enough to do down peaches.  Harry bought so much fruit yesterday and it had to be done. I saved three baskets of peaches for eating and the rest of apples, peaches and plums have all been done now.
Today I had to start the week long Food Diary for Nielsens - you know, record everything we eat, drink, and snack/nibble each day for 7 days. So each evening I must sit at the computer for about an hour recording what was taken in, including the ingredients, and brand names. I keep a log everyday just to prompt me.
Hope all is well with you folks - thanks for the cold and miserable weather you sent my way I actually had to find an extra blanket for sleeping last night. ( Sounds like your comments from last week Pati haha) Should improve for the week to come.
Here's to another good week to come. The leaves are falling now, and I love Fall weather even if it is a harbinger of winter to come.
Take care

You're right

I seem to have a good sense of direction.  That's not to say that it always works well, and there have been a couple of times when I feel that sense of panic.  Not often though.

Saturday, September 12, 2015


Pati, you have no idea how jealous I am that you always seem to know where you are are going.  I am always scared because I never know where I am.  I won't shop in Super Store, or even our local Safeway, because I get lost in the store  I was trying to explain to Jim the terror I feel when I  don.t know where I am.  Probably both of you have an inate sense of direction and cannot fathom how I feel when I don't know where I am.  He was making fun of a potato truck driver who got lost trying to find the next field.  We had a big fight because I understood getting lost, but he didn`t  and made fun of her.  If he only understood the terror of not knowing where you are, even when you are in a store.  Just  venting, even if neither of you understand

What a treat

I just logged on after a day full of "putting down fruit" and see all your messages.  Oh, how I wish I, too, were part of your dialogue today!  Isn't it wonderful to carry on a conversation - back and forth, back and forth - it is as if we were together. So with that delightful thought in my mind, I shall now go for my bath, and then I shall snuggle into a nice clean bed, and I shall dream about making my trip to Winnipeg to see my sisters! Take care.


but I hate to think of you with all that time on your hands and nothing to do.  How will you manage with all that freedom?


That's just silly.  It's just going to get dirty again so why bother? :)

If it was my house------

I'd be spending the day cleaning up after that frenzy of work!

Yay!  I don't have to find  or cook anything for lunch.  There is a community B-B-Q at the church across the street and that means a free hot dog and drink.  Although, I don't think they'll let me in the bouncer iwtht he children--big sigh.

What am I Thinking of?!?!

It is 10:30 Saturday morning (yes, the weekend..... my day off)  All the laundry is done and put away.  The canner of stewed tomato junk is just cooling enough to freeze it.  I have pulled up all the tomatoes, cucumbers and the 1 enormous zucchini plant and raked up the debris. The tomatoes, cucumbers and zucchini are in the basement waiting for me to do something with them.  The tomatoes will be skinned and frozen until I can get to them.  I found a couple of stuffed zucchini recipes to freeze, and I will grate some and freeze for fritters and stuff later. AND I think a lot of people will be taking cucumbers off my hands. Now I wonder how I will keep busy for the rest of the day :) 

The bus?

Why would you ride the bus to pick up the 50 million?  Surely you could afford the train, or even a cab.  Or maybe fly your new plane down.

Friday, September 11, 2015

Consensus then?

I thought I must be going blind when I saw the font I was sending to you in my messages and then Pati would send and it was so much clearer.  So we should change it to "large" each time we write (as I, too, could not find how to default it to stay at large)
Have a great weekend folks.
(I expect I'll be going on the bus to Toronto on Monday to pick up my $50 million from tonight's draw. I will share, so be not dismayed, but instead "don't worry, be happy".....haha)


I've never figured out how to make it a default and I change it every time.


This is large on my computer.  Can you make the sise a default or do you change every time you post.

Large font

I've been using the large font for quite some time.  Yes, it does make a difference--to me.

Test results

I shall use large size and hope to be able to read it. Let me know if makes a difference to you.


I am testing for a larger font. 

This is large size

This is largest size.

Thursday, September 10, 2015


There just might be a little panic in your future.  It's been quite cold around here for the past couple of days--enough so that turning the furnace on has been considered and rejected.  After all it's just mid-September and far too early to consider heat!  Almost freezing last night, we have a couple of quilts on the bed, and have brought out the sweat jackets and winter underwear.

We seem to be just putting in time around here.  We're doing just enough around the house to keep things tidy  and clean, and then I'm in the studio working on my latest piece.  Did I mention that shortly after finally cleaning my fridge, I made Cathy's B-B-Q pork.  I got it all ready and put it in the fridge to marinate, not realizing that there was a hole in the bag. Yep, red stuff all over the the fridge, and I mean all over, as we didn't find it until it was time to bring it out and cook it.  At least, it tasted good, as always.

Amber has told me that Jessica has been asking about family.  Many of her friends have family close by and spend time playing and visiting with cousins.  I was thinking about getting out the family tree that we have tucked away somewhere, and showing it to her.  Not that any of the people we knew as McGrath cousins would have any meaning to her, but it might give her an idea of her place in her own, and our, generations.  Actually the Findlay and Hughes family trees I have are much better researched, but there is still quite a bit of information about the McGraths.  I'l have to see if I can find the documents.  The ones I had came from Auntie Lorraine and cousin Eileen Nordstrom Hawrysh.  Maybe when everyone comes to visit we could up date them a bit.  I'm not sure Jim is there and certainly not Little Chloe.

First zucchini, and then books....

I actually looked into some cookbooks, but I could not come up with a recipe for you to stuff and freeze, and I do not have one in my head as I have not made it this way. I love my zucchini small, and sliced and fried. And then I dip it to eat into my homemade ketchup. Yum!  I hope you have found a recipe already?
I am happy again to be reading something I might actually enjoy.  I slipped into the Library yesterday and surprise, found the first book in the series of 3 books called The Guardian Series by Jack Whyte. He is the same author who wrote The Templar Trilogy that  I recently finished and loved.  I have been struggling to read a Wilbur Smith novel called Dessert God and am halfway through but with little enthusiasm. I started this new book last night but just the introduction, so now am anxious to get to bed to start it in earnest. Another historical novel as is all three of this series. The first is about William Wallace of Scotland. (remember the movie Braveheart - it was about Wallace.)
Today we went to Midland to pick up an item Harry bought on the last Auction. On the way back we pass a spot on the Highway with food stores - New York Fries, a Deli, Subway, a specialty burger place called Webers, and of course Tim Hortons.. Harry always likes a Subway so that's what I got him, but this time around I opted for a treat - a Tim's coffee and an Everything bagel with herb/garlic cream cheese. Great!
Tomorrow if it does not rain as it is calling for rain, I have a list a mile long of things to do in the yard. The temps are starting to get lower at night so there is a "panic" on now to get all the produce in, and planting/transplanting done.I started a book with a list of all the things to be done for the fall in prep for winter - I am already on page five with items - and I haven't done any of them yet! What a hoot!  That's wrong, I have most of the indoor plants indoor now. So that's a start, right.?
Hey, time to get that book out. Take care.

Tuesday, September 8, 2015

Back to Reality

My holiday is over, but the potatoes are dug, the tomatoes are in jars or the freeser, or the big box on top of the freeser or still in the garden........ lots of cucumbers.  More green peppers coming.  I am looking for a stuffed succini recipe that I can freese and use later. (freeser meal)  I have found a couple that I will adapt. Do you ladies have any ideas?  Jim starts potatoes tomorrow so he has one day to rest and anticipate.  I made him get up with me this morning since he has been sleeping in every morning this past week.  Tea is ready, toast has popped.  Have a great week.

Monday, September 7, 2015

Pony Corral

I'm thinking of the one on Grant.  They have a lovely solarium, where we might be able to have some privacy.  Of course, when my ladies meet, they put us to one side, of this solarium, so our raucous behaviour won't bother other patrons.

I'm in....

I will look forward to the Pony Corral. Of course, my lasting memories go back to the original on Pembina so many (so many) years ago. Although I have seen the new one on Pembina on one of my trips there. Did you mention once Pati that there was also one at Grant Park? So which shall we venture to?  I will have a hard time to scare up some daughters but, I wondered if perhaps my favs Jessica and Samantha would honour me with sitting beside them? What do you think?


When the children were young, in the fall, I would, sometimes, dry parsley for use over the winter.  That day the house smelled wonderful!  Or maybe I was high on parsley fumes?

I've never made relish, of green tomatoes or anything else.  It's not something we use, but I think you sometimes make it Cathy? My tomato memory was when we lived on Woodside, and had room to grow tomatoes.  Every fall, around the end of October, while David would drive his father to Florida,  I would spread the tomatoes in front of the patio doors to try to ripen them a bit for freezing or making sauce. All those tomatoes all over the family room floor--funny now, not then.  

And I certainly remember the year we all made Salsa!

Yesterday, David dug into the cake mixes I had stock piled in the basement.  I guess it's been awhile, maybe since the girls stopped coming over for Sunday supper, four years ago, but most of them are woefully out of "best before" date.  I can see a lot of cake in my future.

I've been fretting for awhile about where to go for a "Ladies' Luncheon" while everyone is here in December.  Then I remembered how much I enjoy my monthly luncheons at the Pony Corral, and decided that would be a great place to take everyone. There is a well rounded menu, and I have never been disappointed in anything I've tried. so everybody plan for that on the 29th.  Bring your daughters.

Sunday, September 6, 2015

Hot enough yet??

And I hear on the radio that there are frost warnings in Alberta!  I certainly do not want frost yet, but a little cool breeze would be nice. Speaking of frost, yesterday I managed to get most (most) of the houseplants back into the back room again after being outside all summer.  This is a multi step process - first to clear space in the back room and then clean the plants from all the dropped pine needles, and then figure out where to place them on the limited shelf space. I still have two big tree like plants to bring but they should go on the floor. Oh, dear, better clear some more floor space haha!
Have heard from all the "old girls" and we have planned a luncheon for Saturday, October 3 in Huntsville at the Swiss Chalet. It is on a Saturday to accommodate the one who is still working. All the others are now retired. So there will be five of us and I am looking forward to the outing. We usually have a good time and it's fun to see them again.  They all have such different lives from me, sometimes it is hard to relate, but they are still friends.
I believe today we are picking fresh parsley and boxing it up and sending it on the bus to Harry's sister in law in Kirkland lake. I have to check the schedule yet but I think the bus will go around two pm - give us time to get it ready.  Yesterday Harry went to the grocery store to buy some ingredients to make green tomato relish - came home with a bake yourself pizza so we had that around 2:30 pm which sufficed for lunch and supper! And still some leftover for today. So today I believe it will also be make relish day?  I'll have to ind more jars. never seems to end.
Better get going, sounds like a full day and I haven't had my coffee yet.  Take care

Friday, September 4, 2015

Another adventure?

Got up this morning, Stopped in the bathroom and headed for the kitchen, where I found David waving a flyer from the paper, at me.  Superstore had Chapman's Ice cream bars on sale.  Gotta go and get there early, before they were gone.  I had a coupon from Micheal's and had planned to go on my own and borrow their scooter and just cruise around the store, as it is new in our part of town.  Well, grab some clothes and off we go--no breakfast--no tea.  We found the ice cream bars about 2 seconds before another older couple did, each grabbed six ( yes, six!) boxes--the limit, and headed for the checkout.  Unfortunately that left about 3 boxes of unpopular varieties for the other couple.  Do I feel guilty?  Na-a-ah.

Considering that the heat and humidity were through the roof, David dropped me off at Micheal's, and headed home with the ice cream, and then came back for me.  I had enough time to get through most of the store, and used my coupon for a large ( 24" X 36") sketch book of newsprint for some free sketching lessons I hope to be able to attend over the next couple of months.  This is the size of paper I use for my art quilt patterns, in any case.  Than back home where I spent about 1 1/2 hours sorting out the next meeting of my Tuesday Stitchers  ( One lady can't attend the next meeting as she is off on a cruise down the west coast of N. America and through the Panama Canal--poor thing)  Interesting lady.  She and her husband, a retired academic, live frugally, but travel extensively.

Watched my afternoon tv show, and then went to lie down, when the heavens opened amidst great sound and fury. We had been through a terrible thunder and lightening show around 2:00 this morning--enough to wake us and keep us awake, and this was more wind, thunder and rain, but the lightening less noticeable.  Evidently there is more forecast for tonight.  But the heat an humidity continue, so we still have the A/C on.  All of this meant that I didn't get to the library this afternoon,and now have next to nothing to read over the long weekend.  I may have to do housework!

Have a good weekend!

How to say "Thank you"

Around here, a few bottles of home made wine would do the trick.

Thursday, September 3, 2015


Today our neighbours showed up and cut and split almost all the wood we had piled in the yard.  How do you thank someone for  doing that.  If not for them it would have still been piled up next year!

Stash busting

Cathy, your daughter is welcome to raid my stash anytime she's in the city.  I'll even give her a can of pop, or a cup of tea, while she does it.

Wednesday, September 2, 2015

Hot & humid

The "dog days of summer".  The humidex is 38 for today and tomorrow and then, just in time for the long weekend it gets cool and rainy. My week off has been  busy, but I took yesterday off and did no work at all.  Today it is back to the garden. I don't think we have ever had so many, and such large green peppers! The neighbour is coming over to help us clean out our fire pit.  We usually take multiple wheel barrows full and dump them in the bush.  He is bringing his gator so that we can do it all in one load.  then he and Jim are going to check out the propane system in our camper van.  There is no fruit at all in  our area this year.  Everything was killed off by the early spring storm.  And people that have apples are finding them all wormy or rotten.  Our neighbours have 2 large apple trees and got 4 apples this year.  I still have a bag of saskatoons in the freeser from last year.  Pati, if you ever decide you want to purge your material supply again please let my daughter know.  She is now into sewing all sorts of little things, like cup holders, pencil cases, shoulder bags etc.  I think a quilt is also on her list to attempt.  It seems her artistic skills have emerged as she is also doing a lot of painting and metal pressing, as well as still writing.  The window replacement is going slowly at work.  They have only done 5 windows so far, but the government requires them to do full sealed hoarding on the workspace and have negative air flow inside the hoarding.  Time to start the day.  My first cup of tea is delicious and I am ready for the next.

Another week indeed....

It's Wednesday already! A few words before my first coffee for the morning. It is a bit foggy outside this morning although it is also a bit dark  - it's also too early but could not sleep anymore.
The crab apples have been front and centre so far this week. Instead of dehydrating, the apples are being made into juice. This process is a bit more complicated and time consuming but so be it. The juice is a beautiful deep red and should be very tasty. I am still using some from last year as we have a goodly supply still downstairs.Eight more baskets are lined up on the table outside ready to do today - will be another busy day. Tomorrow we will be going to Huntsville to visit the lady friend. I called her daughter Carolyn last evening -she has to attend a meeting today because they want to move her mother again to either Orillia or Penetangusene to wait for a long term bed. It is a real struggle for caring for elderly - and I sure hope I shall not fall into this when I get older. We cannot possible visit her if she is so far away -  nor says Carolyn - maybe they could go once a week?
My chore for this morning is to find the sealer lids- I brought up more jars last night but couldn't find the box with the lids. Oh, it's there but I just have to find it haha!  How are your days off Cathy - getting any garden work done?Take care