Sunday, May 31, 2009

It's Finally Sunny!

Click to enlarge.
It's been raining for the past few days but the sun has finally decided to peek out. I guess the gardens really do need the rain and it's still spring so what can I expect? Here's the fabulous centre spread in the summer issue of ATC Quarterly. It's one of my favourites...

Saturday, May 30, 2009

Walk on the Glengarry Trails

The other day my friend Peggi and I went for a walk on the Glengarry Trails, about 10 minutes from my house.

There are a series of trails and boardwalks that go around the Garry Fen, a small body of water surrounded moslty by peat moss and water plants.

On the other side of the boardwalk, there are inlets of water where muskrats and ducks can travel.

There are also pitcher plants, this one getting ready to bloom. This plant is a carnivore and it waits for an unsuspecting insect to get trapped in the liquid contained in the "pitcher." Lunch!

Lovely marsh marigolds which as their name implies only grow in wetlands.

There are all kinds of blooming sedge grasses growing in little clumps around the boardwalk.

Wild ginger was in bloom but the these burgundy flowers are difficult to see as they bloom very low on the plant, practically touching the ground.

My favourite! Wintergreen berries. One crunch and you know why Mr. Wrigley made gum out of these.

Friday, May 29, 2009

Fusion Food?

The other night we fired up the barbecue and threw on a few hot dogs. Richard also grilled up some Greek cheese which has to be cooked just right -- not too hot or it melts through the grills. Meanwhile inside I was frying up the last batch of morel mushrooms.

Richard decided to create the ultimate shiskabob: wiener, morel, hot pepper ring, grilled cheese.

Thursday, May 28, 2009

Playbox Cookies

Does anyone remember Peek Frean's Playbox Cookies? As a kid these were my favourite. I thought the Canadian version was called "Toybox" cookies and the images weren't quite as ornate as these...maybe just simple musical intruments and such. But it was 30 or more years ago (yikes!) and now I'm not sure. Anyhow, I came across this old tin at a garage sale in Hawkesbury last Sunday. Does anyone remember these?

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Catching Some Rays

The cats seem to follow the sun spots in the house. Here's Nutmeg catching some rays from the skylight in the famly room...

...and Oreo sunbathing in the livingroom.

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

More Blooms

Richard and I visited our local greenhouse on the weekend to buy our bedding plants.

I just love this place. Maybe one day my garden will look this bright and vibrant.

I guess that's the thing about spring.

It's filled with so much hope.

Monday, May 25, 2009


Living in my parents' home, I've inherited their garden and what my mother referred to as her "black thumb." Although she never prided herself as a great gardener, there are remnants of her touch. A few of her scarlet tulips still bloom each year although this photo doesn't do them justice and was shot on their decline.

And Mom especially loved her flowering Japanese crab tree. When it's in full bloom, the air around the house has a delightful scent.

One year my mother pickled the tiny crab apples that appeared in September and as I recall, they were lovely.

My friend Peter bought me an "iris garden" for my birthday several years ago. In a lovely tin container there were a variety of iris bulbs, gardening gloves, trowels and claws and other fun gardening items.

This white iris is one that was part of my birthday gift. It's the gift that keeps on giving...

Saturday, May 23, 2009

ATC Quarterly #15

The summer 2009 issue of ATC Quarterly is hot off the presses and ready to rock and roll. Once it's stuffed and stamped, it'll be popped in the mail. Don't you just love Evlyn Fortier's pastel artist trading card on the cover? I think it looks terrific!
To see a preview of the centrespread "You Are My Sunshine" click here. Thanks to everyone who sent in ATCs for that challenge.

Friday, May 22, 2009

Poop Patrol

I spend part of each day cleaning up after my kitty cats and scooping litter so I guess it was my turn to get scooped out.

Fun in the country, eh? A septic tank has to be cleaned every once and a while (it had been ten years for me) to avoid the system getting all wonky.

The fellow who came was nice and not the regular guy who pops the hatch and looks you in the eye and says, "You've been using too much cooking oil!" or "What kind of fabric softener have you been using?"

Back to the cats I guess. I'm all set for another few years...

Thursday, May 21, 2009

More More More Morels

I couldn't help myself. I went back into the woods yesterday on the search for more morels...

...and I found two more pounds of them!

So that meant open-faced grilled cheese and morel sandwiches for lunch.

Creamed morels with peas and peppers on pasta for supper.

And a morel omelette for breakfast this morning.

Richard tasted the omelette...

...and gave it a thumbs up.

As for me, I have morels coming out of my ears!

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

The Morel of the Story

Around here late spring is the time to start looking for morels, my favourite mushroom in the whole world.

This year has been the best in all my years of picking this wild mushroom.

They're easy to find, almost looking like light bulbs on the forest floor.

And just look at the size of them. On normal years these guys are about half this size.

I'm looking pretty happy with my almost-full brown paper grocery bag.

In no time we had picked over seven pounds of mushrooms.

So that meant morels and scrambled eggs for breakfast...

...morel pizza for lunch...

...and a side of fried morels and butter with our steak at supper.

Here's the first batch out of the dehydrator which will be terrific used in a risotto or cream of mushroom soup later on this year. Hmmm...I might just head back out this afternoon and see if I can find just a few more.

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Holly's Birthday Gift

Sixteen friends got together to do a group birthday gift for our friend Holly. We got together late last year to have wine and dessert (natch) and to throw around a few ideas as to what we should do. We decided on each of us completing a 3" x 5" canvas. I decided to paint Oreo, one of my cats with whom Holly has a special bond.

Several months later, the group met again and this time we brought our completed canvases.

We put them together with velcro tabs attached to long ribbons hung from a wooden dowel.

It came together beautifully...

The miniature works of art were wonderful, each recalling a special moment each artist shared with Holly.

...and here is the final piece of work, hanging in Holly's screened-in porch, where she can enjoy it while sipping on her morning tea.


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