Monday, May 25, 2015

Instant in season or when the sun shines...

Gosh, we've gone from shivering to straight up hot!  It kinda makes for interesting to-do lists!

Then throw in an unexpected visit from DS#3 and plans really change!  I have got him helping me with some dirt hauling and shrub moving.

I focused on my white garden in front of the veranda.  The Rooster and I loaded up at the two local nurseries and then Steven and I went back for a couple more later.  ;^)  Now to get them all in.  Talk about sweat equity!  I'll have to remember to post a mid June reveal. 

I took out a couple of ugly brown cedars and shoulda maybe took out that last one but it has one more chance.  I set mouse traps all around and hope that deters the dogs!!!  

 Not on the list but such a lovely container.  I have a couple of moon flowers in it to climb the railing.  We'll see!

The whole south side of the house is to be be refreshed and this corner has always intrigued me.  A wee water feature???  I brought home a small bit of water plant to kinda test the waters.  LOL The Rooster may not even miss the feed trough!  And besides the frog band has taken over That Faerie Place so maybe the faeries could live here where it'll be quieter and  there are no all night poker games!  :)

A photo from the back side shows where The Rooster planted this line of lilacs a looong time ago and then had no time for the yard as farm chores ate up his time.  It needs some attention as I reeked havoc when  I was learning how to prune things. :O  Today DS#3 is gonna see about removing some of the dead fall in the north bush.  It is transitioning from an old poplar bush to a young oak woodlot.   Not sure I want the change but you know what they say about progress!

 Switching to colour today but the majority of the budget went on the whites.  I did move all the coloured leaf shrubs up to the front curve and burgundy will rule there.  The ashes haven't leafed yet but the ornamental crab is ready to show off! The new colours on some of the shrubs are striking but they can add a polk a dot look to the landscape so I have brought them all to one corner and they can be the flowers for this section.  I will let you know if it works!  ;^)

Whatever the season in nature or life I guess the secret is to just go with the flow!

Friday, May 22, 2015

Catching the dream

Our wind is still decidedly cool but we are on our way to hot!  It is time to let the wind blow all the spring dreams into reality.

For Art 101 my gal taught us about dream catchers and how to make them.  What a great time we had! 

Josh chose earth colours.  The legend tells of a boy who visited his grandmother while she was busy with her hand work and saw a spider.  He attempted to squash it.  But his grandmother said not to hurt the spider.

The spider had been watching the grandmother and thanked her for saving its life.

The spider gave her a gift. The dream catcher hangs near a sleeper and the bad dreams flow through and out the centre opening while good dreams are caught and saved in the web. 

They were quite fun and actually relatively easy to do.  My DD#2 and two of her kids are left handed which makes demonstrating  a bit of a challenge but once we got the rhythm we were weaving away.

And now it is time to turn some of my garden dreams into reality with a shovel, some compost and a variety of plants. I'm going to weave a white garden today.   hmmmm, perhaps I need to add a dream catcher to catch some nice gentle gusts while those bug blowing breezes are sent bye bye!  :O

Thursday, May 21, 2015


I've been organizing Josh's travel journal into daily sections, adding pockets and flaps and gathering journal fodder into baggies for our trip.  Lots of fun for me now and for him later.  We'll be on the lookout for ephemera as we go along.

I got some coloured pens and tried to make it very interactive for him but in such a way he can work on it by himself.  I need to remind him to leave room for some photos when we get home. :O  I'll be using my new camera and he can use my little point and shoot.

He luvs maps and is a good planner in his own right.  Details delight him.  He is a why guy!  The girls have their journal pages done fairly quickly and he is still getting things just the way he wants them. 

From our Manitoba CAA magazine I got a great page on Winnipeg being the hub to all kinds of places.  Not as much as it once was but still it is definitely where we take off from and return to!  :)

We are winding down our school art program and the school journals are getting fuller.  We will definitely be starting another for next year but there are a few pages left for summer fun!   These are the Smash books put out by K&C Company and are quite affordable.  Really smashing!

Wednesday, May 20, 2015

Wonderful white

White pages, clean slates, and fresh starts certainly tells us spring is here.  Snow not so much!

We had some not quite so wonderful white snow, heavy frosts  and cool weather this past holiday weekend but perhaps the weather has got all the surprises out of its system and we can really start. 

 Eliana got me some purple petunias but I have been collecting white plants  as well.

After rereading a few of my gardening books I have revived my interest in my white garden.  Hopefully I can deter the dogs who have developed a liking for it as well.   I have even ventured to start some of my own seed which is definitely not my forte but then nothing ventured, nothing gained.

I did get a better book for Josh's travel journal, a green Smash book to which I'll add some extra themed fold out pages and pockets.  Maybe I should document my garden this year in the 'also ran'.  

Its a mix today; kinda like the weather.  Some necessary work, some play and lots of options.

Saturday, May 16, 2015


I really do luv to PLAY around.  Especially with pigment, and pastes, mixed media products and  pieces of ephemera and, and, and!   It is all about Participaction!

 I did think about a lovely photo shoot with  ALL my favourite play things but it will take far too long to put my play things back from where I would eventually find everything.  It is also spring and today, for the next few hours the weather forecasters are claiming it'll be warm and dry.  There are all kinds of dire predictions of ugly weather for the rest of this May long weekend.  :O

I'm not known for my practicality but the question begs to be asked-  What is the purpose of playing?


I am back to my personal space.  I need to play/make things for my home, my family and for me.

The twice-weekly letter from Robert and Sara Genn kinda clarified this important point for me.

"Here's a creative method surprisingly and often overlooked as we go about and busy ourselves in art-making. Take a look around your own home and family and see what might be needed. Find a wall or a space that can be filled with something you, yourself, would rather like to see. Take a look around your home and family and find something that is worthy of another look and perhaps a rendering for your own joy.

"Love something -- serve it" might seem like an outworn sentiment but it's often the very basis of great art and artistic evolvement."

And that will be the plan- no plan.  Just find the next thing that I'd like to play with and have me some participaction!

Friday, May 15, 2015


Darn!  I decided that Josh needs a journal to record his trip.  So I stopped for a brief moment at the  scrapbook store.  First slip.

I got home and immediately spread it all out and divided up the new stuff and my stash supply into days/categories.  We are now into full planning mode!  :[

 :O  I woke up this morning and realized the trip is about the trip and not about complicated journals. vbsigh.  I'll have to go back and get one of those little Smash books that have a wee pen with a glue stick on one end.  I'll give him a little baggie a day with some 'stuff' in it to do whatever his heart desires. :}    I have dusted myself off,  tightened my laces and I'm trying the trail again.  Today is my CPR course and I'll need the new skills when I tell the Rooster about my little accident!  Ha, it was only a sprain and not a broken Patootie!

Thursday, May 14, 2015

Thursday Thoughts

Prevailing Thursday thoughts, that is...



Wednesday, May 13, 2015

Progress: pacing myself

These fits and starts are down right tiring and very irritating.  I wish I wasn't such a squirrel, dashing here and there and dropping nuts all over.  But the mountain of plans projects is ever on the horizon so while the squirrel is having a nap here is the itinerary for the coming month.

The Rooster has finally bought some new feathers and though the mending pile gets its own space that isn't photo worthy, at least until after I get them all hemmed.  Note to self- next go round find a significant other with a ready to wear pant size!  ;^)

The top of the mountain is weathered in but it covers my big dream.  I dream of making a crazy patch lap quilt for the end of our bed.  Having discovered that I may be lacking in some skill to actually do this climb I have joined a class and have been gathering some supplies for the test block.  I'm not too sure where the squirrel led me for the month of April but I think I see a break in the cloud cover.

 I've enrolled in Kathy Shaw's free crazy quilt course.  Beginners!   I am gathering my supplies and I am determined to catch up asap!  The new 'puter resulted in my losing my supply list and instructions but I'm reconnected and ready to go now.

Now this series has been an enlightening journey. This particular path has gotten a bit convoluted but I'm determined to keep the forward motion going.

The first recommendation for working in a series of quilts is to make a traditional quilt.  I have on my to-do list a summer lap quilt for our bedroom.  :)  But before I slice away I should figure out a block size that makes the best use of my collection of fabrics.  Have I mentioned how much I hate figuring the math.  Invariably it'll be wrong but nothing ventured...

The whole point of ufo busting is to get things done so I can come up with a whole bunch of new ones!  ;^)   This isn't even a hike, a climb, or a full fledged expedition.  This is the daily walk.  :O

DD#1 has invited me to come help decorate her new condo.  Forget walking;  this is the kind of project I skip right into!  Since we are starting with builder beige it would be good to take along a few options for review.  And I do have  few options!  ;^)

Indeed I do have a thing or two to keep me moving right along!  And when I'm in need of a change of scenery there is always all the wet stuff I can apply to fabric and paper but that is for the painting post!

Tuesday, May 12, 2015

There are piles and there are Piles

I want to talk about Piles today.  Unfortunately I haven't any piles of money laying around although I must report good progress on the bill pile.  :)  Stash has NOT been increasing with new stuff!

Manitoba has Red River gumbo as its claim to fame but we farm on the edge of old Lake Agissez and have quite a variety in our soil.  Having livestock we also have some of that gold that adds so much to the life of the crops and gardens.  :)  But I talked about planting yesterday.

I am a piler, not a filer and I've tried to eliminate flat surfaces that collect my not so beloved piles.  But they still have a way of gathering and eventually causing  avalanches which doesn't leave any actual clear working surface. :[

I seriously doubt that paper can be eliminated.   I just hooked up the new printer and it is already spewing out its stuff.  In an attempt to contain slips of paper, backs of envelopes and chunks of paper pads, we've placed a couple of notebooks in key spots.  Here is hoping.

General junk seems to move out fairly regularly.  Neither the Rooster nor I are collectors.  Thank goodness.

But my stuff!   It is all good stuff.  mostly.  I do need it to build things.  But when I don't put it away and it begins to stack up into those dreaded piles; it paralyzes me.    :[

Now all those good ideas.  Those are great piles!  I shall be thinking about those as I tackle the paralyzing piles because tomorrow the word is progress!  ;^)

Monday, May 11, 2015

This week's blog is brought to you by the letter P

Typically this would stand for Planning but for the Rooster's cryptic remark, albeit meant to be helpful, that I am not even a starter as opposed to a finisher.  I am a planner.  And that, dear blogging friends, has brought my head up with a mighty jerk!  :O

As I've said before, blogging has been a wonderful pathway of finding friends,  discovering new techniques and motivational tools but especially for learning about all kinds of new things.  Foremost has been learning about myself.  It has been most enlightening.  Therefore when my Dearie said that I was a planner all kinds of misplaced pieces suddenly slid into place. 

But even I know that the ultimate goal is finishing. It was even the word of the year some time ago.  Really!!!  ;^)   But you can't finish if you don't start.  duh!  So much as I luv planning, I must start.  So no Planning.  At least not first up.

I want to talk about Plan Ting.

My Rooster has reduced his farm chores down to the place where he has picked up my... oh dear, I hate to say it... my plans for the yard.  ahem.  We, as in 'he' leading and 'my' scurrying behind to say but, but...  have started to implement yard changes.  We divided and conquered the lectures during our first ever garden show.  We have acquired vermeculite and perlite and know the difference between them.  After many years of poor results with shelter belt plantings we have gathered pots, a custom potting mix and a manageable amount of young trees that will find permanent and prepared homes this fall.  Meanwhile they will receive TLC in a central location with good access to water. (I used to scatter them all over the yard and forget where I'd put them.)  The Master list keeps us (him) on track when the short list has been accomplished.  The short list for planting ends June 15th when we will be switching to structures. Workroom!  woo hoo!!!   oops, focus- planting!  lol

The Rooster is foremost a gardener, as in vegetables.  But as he is new to raised beds this is a bit of a learning curve for him.  He knows his soils but keeping moisture in the elevated  soil is an whole different thing from clay subsoils and torrential downpours!  :{  That and keeping the dogs from using his freshly tilled earth as a runway!  :[   Aside from the fact that I am gluten intolerant we have been changing our eating habits.  We are eliminating processed foods, downplaying grains, embracing what we grow best, and using our own or local produce.  My dearie is the menu planner and spare time cook.  I had not planned that when we married but I'm sure a happy chick with the way things turned out.  He'll take all that garden produce and turn it into soups and stews  for ready made winter meals. :) 

I need to start some seeds so I can incorporate them into my new luv, containers.  I learned all about using edible plants along with  decorative plants in containers for easy garden landscaping.  Those gosh, darn dogs have also been in my flowerbeds.  :[  I need a few carrot, beet, and swiss chard seeds for my plan.  It will hopefully cut down on the flower budget when we go for transplants and I rather doubt they'll have carrot greenery!  ;^)

So for today I am potting, and planting and kinda playing.  Does that count as starting???  ;^)