Friday, September 30, 2016

sick days

today I took a sick day.  I have not been feeling well all week and I decided why am I busting myself to go to work every day just to collapse on the weekend.  I watched tv all day.  I still don't feel great but I relaxed all day and probably it will help me feel better.  I also got an alarm call from the office and instead of going into town I called the caretakers and they confirmed they were in the building and had set off the alarm.  So, still at home in my PJs.  The garden is cleaned off.  I think I told you this is the worst garden I have had since we moved here.  I took off all the carrots and onions and then carried all of them back to the house in my hands.  Very poor garden :( .  We had elections for our Union last night.   I said I would let my name stand if they couldn't get anyone else.  Well, since the president nominated me on the first round I figured it was me again. It is so sad that the president, vice president and Chief steward are the same people as last time and since there were no nominees for health and safety the Vice president and Chief steward are now health and safety.  3 people doing all the jobs.  And what really sucks is that in the last two years the union has supported a few people in their complaints against management but they didn't even attend the meeting (bitch bitch bitch).  Okay, feeling sick........ alarm call....... headache... time for bed.  Love you both !!!!!

Putter-y day around here

We have a bit of a crisis. We have been "locked" out of Poker Stars.  We've been trying to communicate through their "help" section but without much success.  We have spent our evenings playing for quite a few years, and I really don't know what we're going to do.  Hopefully we can sort it out.  Since I lost my hotmail account, they can't communicate with me, and everything has to be through David's computer--a real nuisance. 

Last evening I started to clean up the basement, and did a bit more while I was doing laundry today.  We now have a very big load to take to the thrift store.  some clothing, but a lot of junk.

David spent most of the morning baking bread.  We ( the Royal "we") made a sourdough starter last week, and enjoyed a loaf of rye bread, but today he made rye again, using the correct amounts of everything, since last time we substituted.  Both versions were fine.  Also today he experimented with sourdough pumpernickel.  We haven't tried that yet, and we're a bit worried that the loaf may not be cooked as well as it should have been.

Then he decided that it was time for Lion to move into the insulated garage.  He's been slowly cleaning up the yard for winter. We're worried about the rhubarb.  It hasn't done well for a couple of years, and I think we may have lost it. Yesterday, he took a tomato cage and made a bit of a tipi over the tiny maple tree in the front yard.  Last winter it was eaten down to the roots by the rabbit, and we don't want that to happen again, so plan to cover it.  Not just yet as it's in glorious colour, tiny as it is.  We've had lots of visitors to the feeder.  The Juncos hung around for about a week, and we've had a Flicker, as well as the Chickadees, some sparrows, and the Blue Jay.  Squirrels have been well represented as well.  The red squirrel doesn't like anyone else at the feeder and runs them off--birds as well as the larger grey squirrels.

Almost supper time.  Have a great weekend everyone.

Friday, already?

Always loved Fridays - takes me back to my working days I guess. It was a nice feeling to know it was a Friday.  Well, maybe now it doesn't have the same effect as one day seems to meld with another, but it's still Friday so lets celebrate!
The lady from the Log House called last evening - they are up again from the south and have Honey Crisp apples this time.  I like the taste of Honey Crisps so we may drive out and get some.  Not that we need apples that is!  I promised her a bag of our recent dried apple frenzy.
I did some actual down and dirty housework yesterday - you know the stuff where you are down on your knees scrubbing the floor kind.  This morning my arthritis is very active - sore and knuckles inflamed. And my foot is acting up after being not so bad lately. Perhaps I can claim that housework is detrimental to my well being?  No, I guess I'll have to continue with my plan to vacuum the rest of the floors today.  Too bad.
I'll go to the library as well to take out another book.  I am almost finished KISSES with Stone Barrington at his best (?) and don't want to be stuck over weekend without a backup.
Last day of September today, and once October comes round my thoughts are really into Winter prep.  Of course, there is Hallowe'en to get ready for so we''ll buy candy and bag it up. Yesterday Harry came home from the dump store with a boxed little fibre lighted Christmas tree - works perfect and in good condition. So I am thinking ahead to Christmas and seriously thinking this table top tree might fit the bill for this year (instead of trying to dig out the big tree?) Hard to imagine just a year ago I was all aflutter about comng to Winnipeg. What great memories of it all. Is it enough to get me through this year here at home? 
Well, time for coffee and reflection before the day starts.  Hope you all have plans of some sort that will keep you happy and busy?   Take care

Tuesday, September 27, 2016

All the good things.....

You were able to comment on some really good things ie cloths fit, and candy crush, so one's focus on the positive is best approach. If you are going to a wonderful Retreat - that is the good thing, so don't fuss about the meals.  But don't, repeat, don't, give up,  please.  Go back to phase one, read a bit more in the book for reinforcement, and keep at it. This attempt has nothing to do with your 20 years ago experience with weight watchers.  This approach now, is new, and working for you and you have invested much thought, and planning to help you succeed.  So, good for you.  Just kick those "blues' around your ankles away with your other foot and carry on.  Lots of happy vibes coming from me....

Monday, September 26, 2016

Rough day

The weather has been awful--rain, thunderstorms, strong, strong wind, and cool.  Yesterday morning, I was up early and looked out the kitchen window. I saw clouds moving faster than I've ever before seen in my life.  Both exciting and  little scary.  This morning my weight was within 1/2 pound for the 5th week in a row, at exactly the same weight as I stalled out at, with Weight Watchers, 20 years ago.

Last week David made a sourdough starter, and this morning baked rye bread, because that's what my diet calls for.  Dear man.  Yes, I ate some while it was still warm and so very, good.  He does make good bread!  Emotional eating?  Defeated eating ( my biggest fear)?  Sept. 30 I revert back to phase one, but October 5th is the first day of the five day retreat out at St. Benedict's Monastery.  All meals are paid for, and are set menu. My instinct is to go, have fun, and follow my diet the best I can, but not get bent out of shape if worse comes to worst.  Or is that setting myself up for failure?  I've been doing this for 7 months, and maybe the best course might be  to take a short break, and plunge in full strength when I get back.  Yes, I'm very discouraged right now, and when that happens I can sense the "blues" barking at my heels, or maybe they're already here.  At least my new clothes still fit just fine!

However, we amuse ourselves watching squirrel fights in the back yard. The Juncos were through last week--a sure sign of fall.  Twice a year for about 4 days they cluster at our feeder.  Lion is still outside under the bush, but Thanksgiving is the usual time for him to move into the garage.  I have been working on the quilted base of my next exhibition piece.  This is the piece that was a complete disaster a couple of weeks ago.  I have all of the tiny pieces sewn together, and now must quilt it, before adding the appliques.  I'll be glad to see the last of this one.  Progress has been very slow, as I am just to busy procrastinating.

Ar-r-r-r-g-h!  Best stop now before I make myself cry!  Time for Candy Crush.  Yes Cathy, you turned us both into complete addicts.

Thank you

I hadn't seen that.  I was touched by the acknowledgments in the most recent book, where she speaks of him, and the support she has felt through his illness.

Louise Penny

In case you didn't read it somewhere, Louise Penny's husband passed away on Sunday.  She spoke of his illness in her last book.

Sunday, September 25, 2016

Ups and downs

Because of the cold, wet, weather Jim had Saturday off.  He insisted that we go to Brandon.  I wasn't keen on it, but he had a secret agenda.  He had decided to buy me a tv with some of his earnings.  I have been using his old rear projection massively large (48 inch) tv upstairs.  It sometimes works.  He bought me a 32 inch smart tv.  it is a much better sise for my small living room and I can watch Netflix on it.  I watched Star Wars: The force awakens on Saturday.  We also got new phones.  I wasn't sure if my new phone was any better, but when I was talking to Keri she noted that I had been running all over the house and we never lost reception so I guess it works!  And, we bought a new shower head!!   (all of $17.58)  Why we didn't do it sooner I have no idea.  I had a really nice shower tonight.  Jim isn't working tomorrow (the ground is too wet from the over 2 inches of rain we got) so I can sleep in until 6:30.  Yippee! And Jim is going to cook supper (Pot roast)  Sometimes life is really good.  Meanwhile I have to figure out my new phone.  It is more powerful than my computer!  That is a little bit scary.  I even have "Siri" on it.  I can talk to her and she will solve my problems.  Jim got her to locate a website for him and it came up almost as soon as he asked.  It also has finger print recognition for unlocking it.  And what is really scary is that this in not the newest phone to be realeased.  It is old enough to be free with our new contract.  I wonder what the new phones do?

Re: "Elaine's late"

Later in the series Elaine's closes ( it really did.  I think the actual woman died) and this creates a bit of a crisis.


Glad you enjoyed the latest Gamache novel.  Did you catch the subtle reference to Haiti at the end? Remember you mentioned you wondered if he might be going to Haiti Pati?  I forgot to tell you that the Librarian hunted down a Wine book for me - not the one you recommended but she found a similar one and it came from Cochrane, Ontario.  I started to read it and so far I am familiar with a lot of what he is saying, but certainly sure that our approach so far has been dissimilar to his...... haha
Our weather is cooler for sure - not pleasant outside and when I go out it is with a hat and coat on. Starting to round up the plants though - Harry's job has been to take the tomato plants down, cutting off all the ties, and emptying the pots.  We pile the pots against the fence as we have done in previous years. I've been trying to do something with the green tomatoes. I made another couple of loaves but instead of the called for walnuts I substituted sunflower seeds and pumpkin seeds - tastes OK.  And I got a craving the other day for choc chips cookies - you planted that urge Pati talking about your baking.  And, I'm doing a good job of emptying the cookie tin all on my own!
We were out to the Log House Saturday and bought more apples and pears.  Today we did dehydrated apples and still have two coolers full of apples to get done. They are in coolers because I have no more room in the fridge - it too, is full of apples and pears and grapes!  I expect there will me more dehydrating over the next few days . It takes about a day for a batch to dry out - which means checking the machines over the night.
Well, a new Stone  Barrington novel shall be started tonight.  I go through them fast as it is easy reading.  I believe I am at number 16 in the series of 39 - still a long way to go haha!  I always like the beginnings...."Elaines...late".  
Take care.

Saturday, September 24, 2016

Not a nice day here

Cold, windy, and wet.  Made us discuss winter tires while we were out for my coffee.  Also made me look at coffee buying in the future. I can't see the two of us climbing in a car, driving to Starbucks and then turning around and driving home.

Buying a house is such an adventure.  Heart-stopping suspense,  constant worry--and then the whole life changing act of actually making the move.  Best to do when you're young.  I sure wouldn't want to face it now.  I'm glad to hear that they've chosen something that has recently been renovated, and that they used to services of an inspector.  We had to make a quick decision with this one, or lose it.  I sometimes believe that we should have either had an inspector or walked away.  We sure have poured money into it--and it's still not absolutely correct, or even truly up to code.  But it's ours, and we love it.  I now realize that, while our previous house was intended as our retirement home, we would not have been happy there, at this stage of our lives.

Meanwhile, it sounds as though you two, Beth, are pouring your souls into your garden.  From the pictures you send, and the way you speak of it, it appears to be close to your heart.  If so, then it's time well spent.

David plans to watch a football game this afternoon, so I may actually be able to get some sewing done.  There's lots on my list, or should I say "game plan".  

I picked up the latest Gamache book at the library Thursday evening, but couldn't get to it until yesterday afternoon.  Yep, finished it this morning.  Such a pleasure to read!

Friday, September 23, 2016

Looking for more rocks, and leaves falling...

I love the Google cartoons - never really know when they will pop up - often I don't know the reference of celebration but then you can go onto google to read about it.  I have my own leaves falling outside now, though, so as I walk about, I see the yellowish, reddish leaves fluttering to the ground just waiting to be raked up. And the trees are turning rather quickly in last week.The weather predictions are for a long Fall and gentle Winter until the end when it shall turn vicious.Great!
We are creating a new garden area - apparently we need more growing space. The top end of the garden was in raspberries and rhubarb, and a peony and other nice perennial flowers. Two tree pine trees left much shade causing ground planting not to grow,  So, the raspberries were transplanted, as was the rhubarb, and horseradish, and the peony and then the two trees cut back to a three foot stump, onto each was placed a bird feeder.  The ground has been rota tilled and bags of soil and fertilizer dumped on.  I was in the midst of doing the "fine" weeding yesterday, when the rains came. Changes the appearance at the front - a little less privacy from my perspective, but then who has any interest in what we do right?
Update - on Mike and Erin  (are you at all interested?haha) They called while driving back to North Bay last evening after having had the Inspector do a thorough going over . Mike was very happy - he was worried about the house not being as it should for the price they paid but after the Inspection and speaking with Inspector, all his worries have been removed. There was a complete renovation three years ago - even the roof apparently. Everything is new. I have volunteered to do cleaning - either in old apt after the move, or maybe in the new house once closing occurs (Mike suggested this option haha).  
Well, I'm hoping for an easy day today - poor Harry is in bed with gout again, so maybe won't be so gungho? I will want to go the Library, and the Lottery Store, but other than that stay in.   I have made an appt for our Kitten at the Vet for Sx on Oct 4. He will have to stay overnight apparently. He is to be NPO overnight of the 3rd- how will I manage that? Poor little thing won't know what hit him.
Have a good Friday and countdown to the weekend. Take care.

Thursday, September 22, 2016

Same cartoon today!

They must have had a very positive response to it.

Wednesday, September 21, 2016

Almost Bedtime.

Did everyone see the Google cartoon today?  it's really cute!

Cathy, we all need to be indispensable in some way, and I'm really glad you found yours.  I'm still searching for mine, even if it's small like being around to turn off the stove when others forget.

Long week

I was facing 3 weeks short one person, but after 2 weeks I had 2 people call in sick... Oh gosh that leaves, let me think,,,,, ME in the office.  I am tired and sick of overtime.  Today everyone was back, but i got more done when they were gone!! How can people drag their heals to fill time  I guess Daddy really did instill us with a work ethic.  Anyway, I got way more done by myself.. Maybe tomorrow I will get caught up.  On a better note, I got a haircut!!Yippee.  I really have to call when I need a haircut  instead of 3 weeks later.  So, now you know why I seldom post.  All I have is bitching.. I seldom have any nice experiences.. I envy you you your lives.  Soon I will retire and have volunteer work to focus on.. I am prompter for this year,s play.  I was too old for a part, but you can't do a play without a prompter.  I am indespensabe

A particularly difficult shopping trip

Today we had to pick up a few things, and price check a few things.  This meant going to 4 different grocery stores.  We started at Walmart, as David had to order a prescription. While there we decided to check the availability of Highliner Cod Fillets.  I've been very, very disappointed in buying less expensive brands, and we had talked about it and decided to find somewhere to buy this brand, one I've been happy with before.  Nope, not there.

The next stop was Superstore, where soft drinks were on sale and, what's more, we had dollar off coupons.  Checked the Highliner Cod Filets, only because I had once found them there, but never since.  Well, they had them.  Bought 3 packages.  We also bought 8 cases of soft drinks and four 2-liter bottles.  Then to Vita Health for peanut butter and rye flour.  We couldn't find either, but David spoke to personnel, (!), and a computer search was done,  Finally a jar of peanut butter was found " in the back", but no rye flour. The clerk got annoyed.  " of course we have rye flour.  The computer must be wrong."  A lengthy search of shelves, by us and three clerks. It seems that we should have been looking for Stoneground rye flour, and the computer would have told us just where to look.  By that time I'd found some,  in a brand we trust, in a totally different part of the store.  This is a new location for Vita Health.  It's at least 3 times larger than the "hole in the wall' we're used to, and includes everything, including a deli section, but no-one, including staff seems to be able to find anything.

Then off to Sobey's ( with a quick stop at Starbuck's for my daily coffee), and finally home.  Then poor David had to schlep all those soft drinks into the house and down the basement.

And why was this difficult?  Everywhere,  every flipping-where, all of the Hallowe'en candy was on display! Boxes and boxes of little chocolate bars, packages of M&M's, boxes of small bags of Cheezies and chips.  And where there wasn't candy, crackers were on sale.  All of the types of crackers that we're often used as snacks.
As we left one store, I mentioned to David how difficult I found it, and he just laughed, saying that he was feeling exactly the same thing.  At least he can sneak down to the freezer for those leftover cookies!  ( They're downstairs for a reason)

The meeting yesterday went well.  There were just three of us, but we had a good chat, enjoyed our coffee and cookies, to say nothing of the cinnamon loaf--(that was go-o-o-d!)  We again discussed whether it was worth our while to host these things when no-one appear to give them any priority, but decided ti carry on, even if it was just the three of us. 

Otherwise, I've spent the day dealing with those little annoying things, details that are time consuming, have to be done, but mean very little in the grand scheme of things. Needless to say, after the busy weekend, and two day cleaning frenzy, I slept well last night.

Tuesday, September 20, 2016

I think I'd like to come.....

Sounds like a very nice little get together with coffee, and goodies and friendly folks...have a fun time Pati.
Lots to do around here though. We made grape jam from the many grapes Harry bought at the Fair Saturday.  The old fashioned way - squeeze the pulp from the skins - cook separately and then combine with sugar and simmer until the jelly stage. It is sweet but smooth.
More news from the Mike and Erin front - they have a conditional sale from a round of negotiation with offers and counteroffers.  Now the fun begins with a real to do list to finalize the sale, and then make the move - closing date to be October 28.  She starts her new job Oct 3 and plans to drive back and forth every day - takes 1 hour and 30-45 minutes from North Bay to Sudbury - I would not like to be her for that month.  The home is located in Markstay - a small community about 20- 30 min East of Sudbury. I am so happy for them - they phoned at supper time last evening and they were sounding much relieved (waiting all day to hear back from their realtor) and extremely excited. 
Well, coffee in hand, time to face another day here on the ranch haha! Actually we are starting the day in Huntsville - it's Tuesday after all and harry likes to go to the ReStore and Thrift Store. 
ps.   I heard from my friend Sue and our ladies get together will be Sat Oct 22 at the Swiss Chalet in Huntsville. We are expanding again as two more old friends are planning to attend, as well as the five others of us. 
Take care

Monday, September 19, 2016

Busy, busy

Tomorrow my small stitchery group will be meeting here.  This means a general clean-up, but I've regrets from several of them, and the ladies who are coming are more relaxed, so I don't have to go so far as to clean the drapes ( not that I ever do).  But they had suggested that I bake something special for them, in my new kitchen, when we set up the date last spring.  So today, David and I baked chocolate chip cookies and a cinnamon streusal loaf .  Now I fully expect that there will be left overs, and that this may present a problem. When we were getting things ready, we discovered that there was no coffee in the house.  I have always kept some in the freezer, but when getting ready for the reno, threw out what I had, as it had been there so long.  Probably a good decision.  I still have to scrub out the bathroom, and find and wash the special cups and saucers, but other than that, a good vacuuming, and we're just about ready.

Yesterday I set out to sort out all of my polymer clay stuff. OMG!  I had no idea there was so much.  I knew I had some old dried out clay, but not as much in the way of partially prepared projects.  We baked off the things I made during Saturday's class.  Discovered that I could solve all of the problems I've had with the baking if I set the oven at 275 degree F rather than 275 degrees C. ( Duh!?) David got quite involved in helping me.  I found a whole box of molded faces that I had forgotten, and he trimmed them for me.  Then we started trying to re-condition clay left over from years ago.  This is a lengthy, physically demanding job, but it worked, just as the instructor said it would!  It took at least half an hour to do each small amount of clay, and we only did two.  Then I did a bit of work with molds.  I'm very happy with the results, but I sure couldn't have done it without David's muscle!  So, again, by supper time, I was exhausted.

David has been very good about my diet, so yesterday we cooked an oven roast for him.  Today we made gravy, and froze the leftovers, so he can enjoy a beef meal periodically.  I feel quite guilty that he is left pretty well to fend for himself when it comes to meals.  This way he just has to thaw and microwave, rather than start form scratch.  We've put away some pork meals as well, over the past little while.

Now, off to clean off the surfaces in the living room, maybe dust a bit, and then off to buy coffee.

Saturday, September 17, 2016


Ah, Beth, what we're seeing is the flow of life.  They grow up and it is only right that they move on.  I read an article once that discussed this, pointing out that, as we age, we become closer to our siblings than our children.  I certainly see that with in our small "Pabecat"  family.  I ease my sense of loss with the children moving away from me, by remembering that old cliche, I don't remember exactly how it goes.  Something about, if you love something. let it go,  if it comes back it's yours, but if not, it really wasn't yours in the first place.   This has certainly proven true of Loren.  He was a great source of support before he married, and he is a good source of support again.

Today, I attended a workshop on Polymer Clay-Complex Caning.  We worked hard and I'm exhausted.  I was so glad that David came to drive me home.  We've had something to eat, and I've relaxed a bit, but don't plan to do much of anything this evening.  This concerns me a bit.  The FAN group is having their Annual Meeting and retreat here over the Thanksgiving weekend--five very busy days and evenings, and I'm on the organizing committee.  I will be there and busy from before breakfast until about 9:00, every day.  I sure hope I'm up to it.  I could have had a bed there, in a shared room, but felt I would sleep better in my own bed.

And that's exactly what I plan to do quite soon.

Ah, Saturday, is it then?

Must be, because yesterday was another crazy Friday haha!
I just checked my Lotto Max ticket, and true to form, nothing.The other day when I went to the Wine Store, I decided to explore.  Another man was set up to bottle, so I asked if I could watch. The wine was a red one - sort of rosy actually. He had various bottles but some were even engraved with his name - fancy! He said those were for when his wife had the girls over. The owner was helping him cork the bottles with a huge floor model corker. Although he said he could rent out a smaller one if we needed one.  And so I was offered a small little glass of the wine - we all had a glass and it was a lovely taste -I could have enjoyed more haha! but it was 10 am and I had to move along. In this same Store is Groovy Glass Beads that the owners wife runs. I think I told you about this store many years ago when it first opened - I looked around and there were so many beautiful pieces with some not so expensive, but others were. 
Yesterday I picked up more fruit from the Log cabin folks and then had to head to North Bay unexpectedly - Willie needed me to pick up his Ebike that had a flat tire and was being safely stored at a business across town. It was hard to get it into the car and transported back to his place - actually took a nick out of the upholstery but I think I can fix that. He'll get another inner tube later and fix the tire . I left there and dropped into Mike and Erins at their request - had a brief talk with them to hear all about their looking at houses and that they put in an offer the evening before - had to hear about the house etc - they are very excited and now, I hope the offer comes through in their favour, or even an negotiated offer is to their advantage. I'm trying not to feel too sad about them moving farther away so encourage them at every step, but inside I feel strange knowing this is really happening  - silly right?
Well, I got up a little early this morning not realizing it, but Harry has the dehydrator going with apples he did yesterday, so I turned it on and shall watch it, and make a coffee and enjoy the time best I can.  Today is the Sundridge Fall fair - I shall not go, but Harry wants to. I am happy to stay home!   Take care

Thursday, September 15, 2016

Off and running....

About to drive to the next town to go shopping at the Wine Store.   Harry needs another white bucket, and some ingredients - he continues to juice crab apples and this would be bucket #4. He is out now picking more apples, and I am the gopher, apparently, to do the purchasing haha!  We picked apples yesterday, and I also managed to cut the grass, in spite of my reticence.
Pati, I must tell you how much I enjoy your stories of life and adventure.  I was so happy to log on this morning and have a good read. It gives me another perspective other than my own...good for the soul.
Well, I better get going. I'll check in again tonight - maybe have something to add ??  Take care.  
ps frost last night - light, but it is here!  I'm looking at my books for something to do with green tomatoes - any brilliant ideas?

Wednesday, September 14, 2016

Subway was go-o-od

But home now and things have calmed down a little.  You're right, Beth, about the cold weather coming.  It has been really cold around here.  Right now the house is at 66 degrees, but we can't turn the furnace on, as it's still September.  The two little quilts we throw over the bed when it's cold just aren't cutting it anymore, so yesterday I bit the bullet and put one of my two large quilts on the bed.  It looks fine, and we were both warmer last night.  These two quilts are larger, and more finely done, and worth a lot of money.  But they are only worth something if there is a buyer.  The one I put on the bed is 109" square.  Yes, it's huge and covers the bed very nicely.  It has 13 intricately hand appliqued blocks, a hand appliqued outer border, some pieced sashing in the centre. and is hand quilted.  I estimate that it's worth at least $2500.  But better on my bed than rolled up in my closet!  I will wallow in it's warmth.

We don't have the veggies and fruit that you two do, so things are a little quieter around here.  We saw preserving jars on sale in Walmart today--$7.00/doz.  I guess I was pretty lucky to get $5.00/doz at the garage sale last spring--although those were jelly jars.

With some of the money I got from the silver, I bought two cd's off Amazon.  Only one has arrived, and it was a bit of a disappointment.  The music was good, but the sound quality was poor.  It was one I had many years ago that became damaged, so had to go.  I certainly hope the other one is better, and quite look forward to getting it.  This is all part of my agenda of trying to reduce stress in my life.  I have also started playing some of my older cds, and it seems to make it a little better.  Music has always modified my emotional state.

But now it appears to be poker time.  Have a good evening, and everyone keep warm.

Crazy day

Monday, we got a notice that our water would be turned off from 8:00 am to 2:00 pm, on Wednesday.  Oh Joy!  On Monday I also managed to get through to my dentist and arranged for an appointment for noon today, to have my teeth cleaned . Well, that'll get us out of the house for a bit while the water is off. I worked hard yesterday, to get all of the important things done, and we filled our big pots with water before bed.  The morning was going well, We slept a little later, and were eating a leisurely breakfast, when, about 10:00, the phone rang.  It was the dentist's office letting me know that I would have to take massive doses of antibiotic one hour before the cleaning could be done, because of the recent ( less than 2 years) history of knee replacement surgery.  They could phone our pharmacy, and we could pick it up, or we could get to the office an hour early and they would supply the pills.  The office is way over on the other side of town.  We rushed around like fiends and got there with minutes to spare.  While there the dentist suggested that I change my brand of toothpaste and use a different type of toothpick (say what?).  So off to Walmart on the way home, (Ka-a-a-ching!) despite the construction every where.

By that time it was 2:00 and we hadn't had lunch, so off to McDonald's.  This time we had to deal with computerized ordering without any assistance, but we did it.  And then we waited.  The computer sure hasn't improved service in our neighbourhood!!  It is now almost 3:00, so a quick stop at Starbuck's, and home to watch the premier episode of Highway Through Hell. ( Missed it last night) As we walked in, the phone rang, and my friend Gail said she was coming to town, and did I want to go out for coffee.  We chatted for a moment, with some really strange noises in the background, then she told me she was riding her bicycle down the highway, and the noise was the semis passing her by.  We decided to do coffee another time.  As I hung up David came to tell me that we still didn't have any water.

It's now 5:00.  We finally have water, but at this stage, the thought of starting to cook supper is a joke. But we did find some Subway coupons, so it looks like we're heading out again.

Mid week...

Coffee in hand and a few words to start our day. Every day seems to be busy "from dawn til dusk" so this is a little ritual when I first get up....have a coffee and check for messages, and read the Free Press headlines, and pause before the day starts in earnest. Trusting all is well with you folks. This morning is a little wet and cooler and forecast for much cooler weather. The green tomatoes are piling up in the house as the plants are being stripped in anticipation of frost. The garlic has been planted already in two separate plots. I need to cut the grass again but my foot is bothering me so much it will be a chore to get out the machine and do it. C'est la vie!
So here's to getting us over the hump and into the weekend.  And tonight is Lottery night again. Yeah!  More dreams. Take care

Monday, September 12, 2016

Oh dear...

I am just reading your messages this morning early. What a sad experience for you. I could feel your exasperation. Your decision to move away from it was good - take some time, have a Starbucks, sit and read, and come back to it refreshed and with a renewed outlook.  There will always be a solution, and you are the perfect person to resolve this.  Looking forward to hearing about your success.  XX

Sunday, September 11, 2016

Oh Darn!

Goodness Gracious!  How did that happen?  Too bad.
(see other blog)

It is important...

Dates such as this in our lives are important- Cathy you will come to understand this in time as well.  I was brought back to remembrance in attending the retirement celebration a few weeks ago that I wrote about.  There is just one little setback for me though and that is remembering my less than perfect second job at VON from which I was turfed.  It has been seven years (but who is counting) and although it is not foremost in my mind, I do keep getting 'flashbacks"  This too, will pass.
Cold and windy here - so cold, I brought houseplants in from outside this morning.  Not all of them yet, but a good number so as to make a 'panic' move a bit easier if it comes to that and the weather hits freezing tonight. 
Harry is doing more dehydrated apples today - Full batch yesterday, and more today. Keeps the kitchen busy, and then gives me something to do, when the cleanup needs doing after.
I watched a movie before bed last night for a change - Notting Hill with Julia Roberts and Hugh Grant.  I romantic comedy - and it was funny so I guess it was what I needed. 
Received a message from friend Sue today trying to organize another Luncheon with all the girls for late October.  About six of us if all can come.  I will look forward to it as I always do.  And I have made my annual appointment with the Doctor for end of November (have to do it well ahead) this year I will enjoy the referral she'll send for a colonoscopy haha!    
So back to work.. Enjoy your books Pati - how can you ever get through so many?   Take care - send some heat my way.


Today it is 15 years since I handed in my retirement notice.  It was a Tuesday, and I was effectively gone Friday, even if I managed to keep being paid for another month.  I know the world sees this as the anniversary of another much more life changing event, but it is meaningful to me in a special way, as well. While I spent the next two years in part-time work, this is the important day.

I have ordered several books form the library.  Well, they all arrived at the end of last week.  I had 10 books piled up waiting to be read.  Have taken a good stab at it, and have finished two.

The squirrels and birds are back in the yard, but no sign of ants.  This means I can sit outside, to read and drink my coffee.  One of my goals was to spend more time outside, in the yard, and to a certain extent, I think I've met it.  I've also tried to increase my physical activity, as an alternative to the exercise program that is impossible for me.  Unfortunately this means spending more time doing housework.  It may show, but it always needs doing again.  Now I'm wondering if I should be looking at something more organized.  While I no longer nap every day, once in awhile, I run out of strength, and need a short nap to carry on.  Maybe I should just concentrate on reading the books.

Today I am cooking quinoa to use in a couple of the diet recipes. I'll portion it out and freeze it.  I've had it before, and not minded it at all.  It seems to pick up the flavour of whatever it is served with.  However, I seem to have stalled out again.  I am back to phase 3, as of Friday, and will really have to work it out.  Yesterday, I was really craving sweet.  I had half convinced myself to get a cookie with my coffee, but stopped at the grocery store to buy greens on my way to Starbucks.  As I walked in, in the foyer, weren't they handing out cake for some sort of anniversary celebration.  Little tiny pieces, about an inch square.  Yep, I ate one and it pushed all thought of cookies out of my head.  It was just enough.  I see this as a type of victory.

Saturday, September 10, 2016

YOu did it out of love

and there can be no better reason.  If there were no sad times, we would never appreciate the happy ones, especially with our animals.  They ask nothing from us but kindness, and you gave that.  The fact that you mourn tells of your love.

Tough day

I took my cat in today to be put to sleep.  I swore I wouldn't cry but of course I did. It was very peaceful  She sedated him and then I held him in my arms until he was all calm.  I held his head as he passed away.  Sometimes I wonder why we have pets.  The vet said it was time cause he was sick and old.  It was still a hard decision for me.  And now I am crying again, damn it!


Lucky to get your post, Beth, as it's "giveaway Weekend" here, and we had a couple of plastic bins to give away.  So we rushed out with them, and hope to see them gone, even if we were a bit late.  Bricks seem to move well in these events.  A couple of years ago we got rid of quite a few cinder blocks we had stored in the back yard forever.

P.s.  We put them out just before I started this, and by the time I was half way through, they were gone.  Hurray!)

Beth, are you not able to get some advice etc from a wine store?  David gets most of his help from the family that run the local "Wine Baril", that's been in the business for many years.  Our recipes, that work from juice or fruit, indicate that the wine is kept in the secondary (glass carboy or the smaller ones you may use) for a year or more, before you need to worry about bottles.  And white wines, such as those made from apples, use clear bottles, leaving the green or brown ones for red wine.  I'll send you a couple of the recipes we've used.  Of course, sometimes, you have to just take a method that works for one type of wine, and use it for another.  A bit of an experiment.

No plans for the weekend.  I hope to get some studio time in, and there's a washer load of towels to run through.  I'm looking for a way to clean my washing machine.  There is a "tide line" near the top of the agitator tub, and I want it gone!  At the same time, I don't want to think about having to get in there with the Magic Eraser and "elbow grease".  Ugh!  But I have ha hunch that's in my future.

Good Morning folks

Another week done.  I feel as if I have been run over by a dump truck.  It was one of those weeks for me. but let's look at what was best about it.  I got to sit and have a coffee and chat with Mike.   Erin was on nights doing some training so was sleeping when I got there, but got up to have a chat. I thought maybe we were too loud talking, but Mike told me she intended to get up so that she, too, could visit with me. I liked that comment as it made me feel good. Before I know it, they will be off in Sudbury and my dropping in while in North Bay will no longer be a special event for me. So I'll take what I can now!
There are now three vats of wine working in the back room. No idea what is to come of it all, but time will tell. I picked up 15 green coloured wine bottles from the auction house while I was on my trip to North Bay Thursday. Harry is getting some good deals from the weekly on line auctions. These were only $6.00 for the 15 of them. And Pati we bought a big bag of the sterilizing powder you mentioned and cleaned all the demi johns (3) and have rinsed them with the mixture. 
In North Bay as well, I had to go to Canadian Tire to purchase a ladder. It was on sale and a really good deal. I was terribly worried about getting it in the car and prepared myself with rope and red swatch to tie to back if need be.  Mike told me he was familiar with these ladders (21 feet) and that they would break down to about 5 foot pieces so I was somewhat relieved driving over to the store. As it turned out they were all packaged nicely in plastic wrap and were indeed only about six or seven feet in length and a boy helped me to the car and it fit perfectly. I was really relieved then.   I need a larger ladder to do the roof in winter, I think I told you I bought one at the Home Hardware here but once home it proved to be too short much to my disappointment. We kept that because Harry wanted a taller one for picking apples, but I was still on the lookout until this sale came up at Canadian Tire.
Yesterday Harry and I drove to Bracebridge (1 1/2 hours south) because he answered a notice on Kijiji for free bricks. Turned out to be bricks all right - tons of boxed red bricks 6 inches long, 2 1/2 inches wide and about 1/2 inch thick. They were sitting at the side of a house and were in cardboard boxes that has rotted by time and weather, and were crawling with bugs and slugs of assorted kinds. It took us over an hour to carry them all to the car. It was a heavy load and once home, more time to unload at the back of the house. 
He intends to build up another raised garden plot with these bricks.
Then we headed for the Log cabin to buy more fruit from the orchard people.  Harry intends to dehydrate tomorrow the apples we purchased.  Some are the honey crisps and they are delicious to just eats so I'm hoping to get a few of them for just that purpose. 
Well, Harry is off to garage sales - only a few this time of year, but I should be getting my ass in gear and starting some house work. 
Here's to a fine weekend - hope you are all well.   Take care 

Thursday, September 8, 2016


Yesterday we had the yard sprayed for ants.  Of course, the day after I made the appointment most of the ants disappeared.  Likely because of the the cooler weather.We're told it was a little late in the season, but should still be about 70% effective.  Actually, they only sprayed the patio , sidewalks and driveway, as that appears to be where the nests are.  We'll probably have to do it again next year, but it was still worth it now.  They gave us a good price, as they didn't have to do the grass.  The fellow was more concerned about the fact that we have a feeder the squirrels visit than anything. But we had to spend the about 4 hours away from the house after he did it, and kept the windows and doors closed for about 12 hours.  It seemed to bother me a lot more than David.  The fellow took a loot at the tree, and seemed to think he could spray it for aphids in the spring, using his very long spraying wand, maybe from the roof.  Not to sure about our liability if he does that.  But it would be far less than having to get a tree service in, with their big lift rucks, especially when there isn't any immediately feasible way of getting the trucks close enough to the tree.

We started a process recommended by the manager at the credit union.  We have three automatic deductions that come out in the middle of the month, and that timing can't be changed ( that's what the companies claim, and we've gotten no where trying to change it)  This means that I have to make sure that the money isn't taken out of the account for the first two weeks of the month.  Which means that the balance in the account is inaccurate for that time. So it was suggested that we transfer the money to a different account, and have it taken out of there.  We were in and made the necessary arrangements for the monthly transfer, and now have to make arrangements with the companies involved.  I have about 4 weeks to do it, but hope to have it done in the next day or so.  It should make things a little simpler around here.

Otherwise, not much going on.  I spoke to Amber a couple of days ago, and she was telling me about the trip she and Jessica made to Churchill.  While they saw bears, she seemed more excited about seeing the beluga whales.  I hadn't even thought about them doing that, but now realize that it's just as big a deal as the bears. She told me that Samantha later asked if she could go to Churchill when she becomes a Girl Guide. Oh oh! It sounds as though they are pretty busy as a family, and we probably won't being seeing them much this fall.

Tuesday, September 6, 2016

Funny time of year...

Back to work, back to school, back to organized activities, back to regular life is a funny time of year. A drawing of the lines so to speak.  It says time to regroup, and get yourself ready for winter.  In my case, so much produce and so much to do to clean up the yard and garden, it seems impossible.  So I make my TO DO list, and try to follow it best I can.
I have to admit that my injured foot is giving me great discomfort and anxiety.  There is no pity, nor compassion so I have to just truck along as if all is well. Time shall heal!
Good for you to hear a definitive diagnosis Cathy - something to grab hold of, and now to take care of.  Let us know what you will be doing for a healthy nutritional plan - are you seeing a dietician? 
Well, my list looms in front of me - one day at a time will be my motto.   And after just finishing the latest Gamache novel, I can say with great authority that all is just FINE with me haha!  Take care.

Monday, September 5, 2016

Back to work

and back with a vengeance.  Jim starts hauling potatoes tomorrow and the car  pool is picking him up at 5:15.  I guess 4:30 is in my future!  I have his sandwiches in the fridge and sliced cucumbers.  The tomatoes are ready and I have a can of soup to heat up and tea to make.  And, yes, I know he can do it himself but I will wake up and won't be able to stay in bed  (for this first day anyway) so I might as well get up and help.  I have an optometrist appointment at 9am tomorrow.  I have had this appointment for almost a year.  I knew when it was but I just didn't realise it was now!  Summer has fled!  Then I have an appointment in Brandon for a test on  the 14th.  Time sure does fly.  I have been diagnosed with irritable bowel syndrome.  A catch all phrase I know, but at least I now have a name for what has been bothering be for so long. Now I can take steps to control it.  It's the eating regularly and balanced meals.  My diet is so irregular that this will be a challenge. With Jim away for a month I will have a chance to work on it and get it to be a habit before we have meals together again.  Now I better get to bed before 4:30 comes!

Saturday, September 3, 2016

The crazy old woman

As they were getting ready to go to the store this morning the crazy old woman, with her tongue in a knot, told her husband she needed a "pick quee" before going.  I know what she meant, why should he be confused?

Accidents at home.

Yes, I have read the back. And so far the book is a good read but I'm only into it a little - read enough though that the murder has now taken place. Wouldn't it be nice for us all to spend some time at the Three Pines B&B together?
It is said that accidents with injuries are most frequently experienced at home.  So this morning, to prove this theory, I decided to fall down the stairs from the kitchen to the landing - three stairs.  Once I recovered my well being from the fall, and picked myself up, I examined myself for injuries.  Oh, I knew I had broken my foot but when I removed my sock, the little toe was at right angles to the rest of the foot.  So I strapped it into alignment best I could by taping it to the next toe, and putting on a fairly sturdy but comfortable shoe. It hurts, but I shall have to bear it and hope the darn bone shall heal itself.  "heal thyself..." she says!
I'm busy with all sorts of produce trying to catch up.  Enjoying myself and playing music as I work.  I just made a smoothie with peaches, bananas and yoghurt - and I had to have another laugh at your expense Pati, while I put the yoghurt into the blender!
Well, back to work as I limp around.  Silly me.....XXX

The latest Gamache book

I have to share, and no, I haven't got the book.  There was a review of the book in today's Free Press--a good review.  So now I have a loose idea of the plot.  The reviewer mentions a"remarkable and moving personal message" contained in the acknowledgments at the back of the book, so be sure to read that, Beth.  He also gives an excellent review of the B&B in Three Pines, stating he and his wife would check in any time.

Friday, September 2, 2016

Another day

to scratch off the calendar. 

Damn depression is barking at my heels, and I realized that it's at its worst, while or just after, I drink the green tea.  A lot of the green teas, and at least one other that I've tried, disagree with me, but I had thought the two I'm using would be okay.  I'm trying to drink a large cup with every meal.  Maybe I'll just have to cut it back to 2/day.  The hardest thing about rigidly following the diet is cutting back on the Dr. Pepper.  I manage about 1/2 the time.  At other times, the stress it's causing just isn't worth denying myself, and I'm really struggling with that concept.  But the scale is a little lower, so I persevere, and sit here with a bottle of lemon water.  A bit of a surprise is how much I enjoyed the cold cod, in a salad.  I've had it twice this week, as I think the cod cakes are awful.

I'm exploring a new writer--Allison Brennan.  I've enjoyed a couple of her books, and have now ordered others.  No word on the newest Louise Penny book, but I can wait.

I have three different projects on the go, but only get an hour or so in the studio, in a day.  I have much more energy, but my working speed is still quite slow, and I still have to pace myself.  Still, it's so much better than it was 6 months ago, that I think the whole losing weight bit is worthwhile.  I took most of a day off the housework this week, and couldn't believe how much it piled up.

Thursday, September 1, 2016

Here I am quick , but off current topic....

It was 5 :30 pm and I was out dumping compost into the barrel. The phone rang. I recognized the Library number - and was sure the Stone Barrington book I ordered must have come in.  Denise, the Librarian ( also friends of ours) said "guess what...the next Louise Penny book just came in, and I thought I would give you a call right away before it went on the shelf"  I raced up in the car, took her a bag of fresh peaches and nectarines that we bought this afternoon at the orchard people's place on the lake, and came home with the nice new book.   So I guess I am bragging a little but I know you will both get your hands on it eventually.  And no spoiler alerts - I just won't tell you about it, haha!
....Now to do dishes, tidy up, get ready for bed, and start my reading!  Move over Stone Barrington - you'll just have to wait......I'm with Inspector Gamache again.
Take care.

Gov't cheque for glasses

Cathy, we both went through this.  The cheque takes months.  One of ours took so long  we forgot it was coming--(a nice surprise, when it did come).

re:The cleaning and sorting.  This is exactly the same thing we went through getting ready for the reno.  Out dated food--out with it.  Can't figure out what something is, or why we ever bought it in the first place--out with it.  The shock and awe that comes with realizing exactly how bad things have become and how much really needs to be done?  A glass of wine, of maybe a bottle of wine, can solve that. I'm still working on my cleaning "to do" list that came out ofgetting ready for the reno.  That's what having the carpet cleaning in on Monday was all about.   Today I get to tackle a couple of the room doors upstairs with a Magic Eraser--the only thing that appears to work on the general grime that develops over years where you touch them.

But the need to evaluate everything that goes in my cupboards, especially when I have fewer cupboards than a couple of months ago, has lead to a much more organized, and functionally useful kitchen.  We are still having to make small decisions about where would be the best place to put things, almost every day.  Believe me--it's worth the effort, just don't try or expect to finish it all in one day.

How do you know when you're maybe not going to a have a good day?  When you make a smoothie by putting most of the ingredients in the blender, and then get your special spatula to help get the yogurt out of the little plastic dish, and carefully scrape it all into the compost pail.