Thursday, May 29, 2008

Finishing up some UFO's

My mother died on January 2, 2008. In her wake she left several broken hearts and a closet full of unfinished projects. I know she had every intention of finishing them, just as I do mine. The idea of getting rid of them feels like discarding out hours of her life. I find myself clinging to what's left of her but I also know that I can't keep everything she ever started and didn't finish. So I'm going through some of the things deciding what to finish what to pack up and send out into the world and what to discard completely.

Finished is better than perfect


Most of her Cross Stitch I'm going to get rid of. I've got tons of plastic canvas and plastic canvas patterns that I'm going to get rid of as well. I don't do plastic canvas myself.

One of the things I've decided to finish is an Afghan. There was just one more row to complete it. I've finished the blocks now I just have to sew them onto the afghan.

Clearing out my mother's UFOs has given me a lot to think about regarding my own. I have two sons and neither one of them are going to want to finish my projects. Most of them were lovingly started with the intention of being finished. Some of them found their way to the finish line but most are still in boxes. I read once on the Internet about a way to make yourself finish those unfinished projects. You are allowed to start a new project only if you finish and old one first and then you must also finish the new project that you're starting. Before you can start another new project again, you must finish an old one. I've been trying this and it is working fairly well.

Robins at Elena House

We have a pair of robins nesting on our front porch. They are such devoted parents. They never seem to tire of their commitment and who work together

I finally got to see the babies. There are four of them. Mother and Father take turns bringing back mouths full of chewed worms, white grubs the occassional beetle. The babies pop up their fuzzy little heads and cry, "Me, me, me, me!!!! I cannot use my front door at the moment but it's worth it, having a front row seat to one of nature's vignettes.
Hope is the thing with feathers
That perches in the soul
And sings the tune without the words
And never stops — at all...
~ E. Dickinson

Monday, May 26, 2008

Apple Blossom Tyme Festival

What a fun time we had this weekend here in Colborne at Apple Blossom Tyme Festival . For such a small community, the event is quite large.

There were pie eating contests, baby contests, an art and quilt show one of the churches in which I displayed nine quilts. There was an antique show at the curling centre and an antique car show downtown. Magic Doug entertained children on centre stage.

There were dog contests for the longest tail, longest ears, pet owner look alike and bobbing for wieners.

There were several performers including a Kobbler Jay, a fabulous juggler who walked around on stilts for most of the day. He was delightful and is especially wonderful with children.

I tackled one of my fears this weekend. It was the fear of the Ferris Wheel. I actually when on it which Alex. So I admit it was only a three story wheel but from the top it looked pretty high to me. I promised myself that I would tackle some of my fears for a New Years resolution and I'm proud to say that I'm still at it.






The street was filled with venders. One of which was a henna artist and Paul, Alex and I all got henna tattos. Mine is a pretty little design on my forearm, Paul's is a celtic knot on the inside of his forearm and Alex got a big spider draped across his hand. These tatoos should last for about 4 weeks if properly cared for.

Those who fear life are already three parts dead.

~Bertrand Russell

Saturday, May 24, 2008

49 and loving it.

I was checking through some of my favourite blogs and found this birthday giveaway at The T-Cozy. What better way to celebrate a birthday than to give rather than focusing on receiving

I love it when I read about someone embracing their age and looking forward to each new decade. I used to play my birthdays down. That was partly because I lost my brother due to illness when he was just twenty-nine. I felt guilty about getting older when he couldn’t. Now that I am in the middle of my life, I embrace my age. Canada and the United States are very concerned with body image. It is actually a sad thing that women judge their value on how they look rather than instead of what’s inside. What a great feeling to be able to leave all that feminine insecurity behind and wrap my arms around life. Let someone else worry about the size of their @ss. I’m too busy looking forward to notice what’s behind me.

This is my before picture. I'm letting my grey hair come in.

The worse that will happen is that I won't like it and I'll go back to colouring it again. If I do go back to colouring I will use Henna dye. It isn't permanent and doesn't have side effects. It coats each hair strand rather than penetrating it. If you stop using it, it will eventually wash out completely

The best thing is that I will love not having to bother with it anymore and spend more time just feeling great than wondering how to part my hair so my roots won't show. If more women would accept their going grey, the more acceptable it would become. Look at how beautiful Helen Mirren was when featured in More magazine or Meryl Streep in The Devil Wears Prada. There is beauty in every age and once we realize it, we will be able to face each day putting our best face forward.
If you decide to go grey, don't let your whole appearance follow. The absence of hair colour requires the presence of colour in other areas to keep you from looking washed out. Check out these tips for looking grey and gorgeous!

As I was going down the stair,
I met a man who wasn't there.
He wasn't there again today.
Oh how I wish he'd stay away.

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

guinea pigs

How wonderful to finally have fair weather. The guinea pigs are really enjoying it. After being cooped up all winter eating dried hay the fresh air, sweet grass and sunshine are just the thing! I put my piggies in a tent to guard them against birds etc. It also keeps the bugs off of them.

This is Q-Tip in his spring sweater. He's a skinny pig (hairless) so he needs a sweater to keep warm. Also he has to be protected from sunburn.

Dexter is never fair from Q-Tip. Here he is chillin' out enjoying the day.

If all the beasts were gone,

men would die from a great loneliness of spirit,

for whatever happens to the beasts also happens to the man.

All things are connected.

Whatever befalls the Earth befalls the sons of the Earth.

~Chief Seattle of the Suquamish Tribe

Both my piggies are rescues. Q-Tip lived the first year of his life in a cage so small he could barely turn around. Just twice as long as he was. Dexter's cage was even smaller. Now they enjoy 6'x2' cage and are a pair of spoiled boys.

Lots of people talk to animals....

Not very many listen, though....

That's the problem.

~Benjamin Hoff, The Tao of Pooh

Sunday, May 18, 2008

get rid of musty basement smell

Paul and I went to a century home seminar by Chris Cooper of Edifice Magazine, last fall and were taught a good trick with Borax regarding musty basement smells. First off, open your basement windows to let the air circulate. That's what the windows are for. Now take a 2 kg box of Borax and mix with 2 gallons boiling water. Put in a 2 gallon sprayer and spray the wood and masonry in the basement. Let it dry. Borax has sodium in it and mold and mildew will be killed immediately. Every time your basement gets damp, it will reactivate the borax and kill of any chances of mildew coming back.

Anyone interested in preserving their heritage home or keeping their newer home in good repair should check out one of his seminars.

Saturday, May 17, 2008

at the lake

We often spend time down at Lake Ontario. Many people don't realize just how big the Great Lakes are. Ontario is not the biggest but it is huge nevertheless.

I used to have trouble remembering the names of the lakes when I was a child but my kids learned a trick in school to help them remember.

Just remember HOMES. Huron, Ontario, Michigan, Erie and Superior.

This is Paul and Alex wandering out on the boat launch. I was standing on the shore taking pictures and getting soaked as the waves broke. I love spending time at the lake. We try to go down there a couple times a week. It's just a few minutes from our house. Whenever I'm upset about something that's where Paul takes me. I can lose hours just watching the water.

What a cold day it was at the lake. When the water is angry, it shows as two different colours. Further out it is a deep blue or sometime grey but closer to shore where it's more shallow, it shows lighter. I guess it's because of the rocks and sand.

The gulls certainly aren't camera shy. In fact, I think they like to be the centre of attention. We didn't bring any snacks for them that day but I think they were glad to be sitting on the rocks staying warm in the sun.

We explored the forest around the shore a bit and found a piece of birch with a fabulous bit of fungus growing on the side. It looks like a little fairy perch.

During our drive home, we all marveled at how green the fields look. What a difference between the water at the lake and in this stream. I think this will be a future picnic spot.

Friday, May 2, 2008

waxwings are back

The cedar waxwings are back looking for a bite to eat. I love that they show up in a gang.

We didn't have them at our other house and they are an exciting addition to my birdwatching. We also have such guests are bluejays, cardinals, juncos, rosebreasted grosbeaks, doves, chickadees, robins and more. We've had a hawk visit the garden a couple of time for dinner but that's not the kind of birdwatching I want to do. Still, hawks must eat and we supply quite a buffet.

The crocuses are done now but it was nice to see them after such a long winter. We now have tulips. They came up as the daffodils were ending. Of course the tulips are mostly yellow but there are a couple of pink ones and a few red behind the garage. The red ones were just about to put on a lovely show and a cutworm showed up and pulled the curtain on them.

There are a few orangy-red and brown ones in the garden. I've never planted tulips so I am glad they are here already to start this garden off for me. It is such a sad and underworked garden but I have great hopes for it!