A Sunny October Morning

We now live in a rainy environment. The workmen don’t seem to mind the wet so much, they are more used to it than I am!  Last evening we were out visiting DSIL’s boat and when we returned to the car, there was a slug crawling on the wondshield. My oh my….

The colors are changing on the Japanese maples every day. I am enjoying watching the variety.wpid-img_20141018_104607387.jpg

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The black stemmed bamboo is especially handsome in the rain.Elora2Quadra 173

We managed to organize an area for the firewood and compost. There seem to be tarps everywhere!Elora2Quadra 158

The plants in the holding area have started growing too. They enjoy all the humidity. The clematis,  ornamental grasses, and other perennials have new foliage and shoots. Here you see the Persicaria ‘golden arrow’ emerging.

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Yesterday some grasses and clematis were planted along with the lovely Podophyllum ‘Spotty Dotty’ in this front area of the house. Work continues here…Elora2Quadra 154

Heathers are starting to bloom near the sauna and there’s an odd rhododendron with a bloom way beyond its usual time.Elora2Quadra 159Elora2Quadra 175

I couldn’t resist a small Callicarpa at Canadian Tire the other day. I had no success with these back in Ontario and hope they love this climate here!Elora2Quadra 171

I’m thinking about a possible secret path here later on with a tree or bench at the end around the bend. Elora2Quadra 161Our temperatures are expected to be around 55F all week long…with rain predicted for each day. That should make the mushrooms grow~!Elora2Quadra 172*****

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Afternoon at the Pumpkin Patch

In costume: wood fairy in purple boots and Leo the spider.Pumpkin Patch 001

With Mommy in the patch. Forrest is a ladybug.Pumpkin Patch 010

There were four baby goats there. Leo got to hold them. Nana wanted to keep the brown one with the black and white markings.Pumpkin Patch 018 Pumpkin Patch 024     Ivy was very happy to see lots of friends… until she was stung by a wasp on her lip. That was a really nasty thing to do to a fairy!Pumpkin Patch 013There were all kinds of dogs there. Chickens too. And a play area and hot dogs. The sun even came out to make things cheerful~!Pumpkin Patch 031

Nana bought fresh salad greens and chocolates for Mommy.
Then it was nap time!

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Badlands National Park

DH & DS found a Natural bridge traveling west from Ontario to British Columbia via South Dakota!

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Settling In

We’re surrounded by boxes and workmen.

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I need to learn the new garbage system and set things up for composting. Today is both rainy and sunny and I have been preparing meals for the troops. This is complicated because I cannot locate all the utensils.

Phoebe dog and the cats are doing well. Phoebe has made new friends.

My new helper in the garden has made a holding bed for the plants I brought. His name is Ryan. Tomorrow we plan on planting five trees.

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Reed’s plant survived the journey and is placed out front.

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Two rooms are freshly painted and two more are being worked on to create our new studies.

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There is plaster work involved where closets were removed.

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In the living room there will also be painting done. I think it will take us until Christmas to figure out all the light switches. Simple curtains are being figured out as well.

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Last evening the school bus deposited Ivy here after school and we got to draw and read until the rest of the gang joined us for dinner. Tomorrow we will celebrate Thanksgiving together I am already thankful for all the help the kids have provided us!

We’ve even initiated the backyard sauna-

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New home on Quadra Island

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Here we are, half moved in. The movers were great. DD was a huge help as well.
DS and DH arrived exactly on time. My new garden helper has been working very hard, mostly in the rain, to get things in a holding bed. There are a few zucchinis growing still.
Already my gardener friend Ryan phoned to tell me about his encounter with a cougar yesterday!
Now the wait to install our computers once the rooms are painted and the dust settles.
DD has been at work on expansion of her chicken coop.

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Looking Back

Our son passed through Buffalo New York on Sunday, the place  where I was born and where I lived through my university years.  He  managed to Skype the area with me.

Both my Mom and Dad taught at the University there. My brother, sister and I all lived in a rented house near the University until I was 4 years old.

The rental home. I don’t remember this house. I do recall breaking my arm one day, my brother walking me home, and my Mom reading me “Little Black Sambo”.Aug18-2014HouseLisbon

This is the school my brother (and sister?) attended nearby. It is now closed and for sale.Aug18-2014Lisbon-school

We then moved to a purchased house in 1946, also within walking distance of the campus. I have memories of carrying Scarlet the cat in a bag while being pulled in the wooden wagon to the new house.

This is the house as I remember it.Aug18-2014old483-Winspear

This is the house as it looks today. My son and I spoke to the new owner of my former home over Skype!
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This is where I learned to roller skate with clamp on skates with a key. My best friend was Kathy. She lived in the corner house. Her father was a doctor. Her mother had an ironing machine and gave us Toni home permanents. I practically lived with them. They had the first TV set I ever saw. There were vacant lots where we played nearby. My first school was a half block away from home and the teachers were mostly very good. Joan was my best friend in my class. She had red hair, beautiful penmanship and was artistically talented! Her father worked at Bethlehem Steel and her mother was a  homemaker. She had a younger sister and they lived in a nice apartment. We hooked up once more in University!

Public School #80 as it looks today.Aug18-2014PS80

I loved talking with the neighbors as they watered their lawns, painted their houses, walked their babies in carriages and so on. I was on a mission to learn what a “normal” family was like! My family was different and I knew it. How? Dad rode a bike to work, wore a beret and carried a briefcase. Mom used a bundle buggy to shop for groceries. NO ONE else did! She graded papers, prepared lessons, and used the Albright Know Gallery for gathering slides for her classes. We had no car and took buses everywhere. My brother played with electronics, not with other children. My sister read books in Latin and galloped like a horse on the street. I remember her practicing to fly as she repeatedly jumped off the front steps. That was proof to me that no family was like ours!

So well over 50 years later, there was my son Skyping me a view of the neighborhood, the newly renovated grammar school, and speaking with the happy new owner of our former home. I have been thinking how this home and neighborhood shaped me…mostly for the good.

As we prepare for a great move to Western Canada next month, many thoughts are churning on the roles of the houses in my past. I’m sure there will be tales to tell in future years about our new adventure. This will be no condo or retirement home, it will be a home with a modest garden near family, near grandchildren. This will be part of my continuing search for what makes a “real” family. Obviously doing things together with them close by will be the best part! Early October will be an exciting experience with our son helping set up the electronics and with our daughter showing us the ropes of living on an island and shopping and banking etc on the mainland, a short ferry ride away.

Perhaps I’ll practice trying to fly with the young ones. :)

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Where Have You Been?

The time has come to pack our bags and travel west. You wouldn’t believe the amount of accumulated clutter we have amassed over the past 17 years.  So far we have only thrown items away. I hope to fill boxes soon. No time really for blogging I’m afraid.

Fortunately I have friends who help with some of the decision making as regards what to do with guitar amplifiers, the piano, the plant lights, and the treadmill. We have more furniture than we will be able to deal with at our new place. There may be a “garage” sale in our future. Oh no!!!

But life goes on all the time that we are plugging away at these things. Our daughter has moved as well. They have many home renovations in progress too. Her stepson, age 15, has arrived for the month of August. Her new puppy (Salty) is growing and doing just what he should, namely befriending the chickens and protecting them. This is the year when her oldest child will likely be attending Kindergarten part time. A big step. She’ll love it and her teacher will love her too. What a big step!

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Her middle child has become a lover of the nearby beach and now rides his two wheeler without assistance. Mastering this before his 4th birthday has made him very proud.

July10-2014LeoOnWheels1And the youngest, not quite two, loves playing with cars and making truck noises. He also loved visiting Daddy on his boat and helping him out.

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As for our son, work has him dealing with foreign lands night and day it seems. There always seem to be crises…but then too, when there is progress with schools and their laptop programs it delights us all and helps many children all at once. There were several fortunate schools in Haiti this June, July and August!

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One lovely friend was able to visit us at the farm last month and wrote up a blog entry of our clematis garden. What a treat to see our place through her eyes! Do take a look here and enjoy! :)

http://torontogardens.blogspot.ca/2014/08/gardenbug-takes-leave-of-200-clematis.html

Thank you Helen!

*****

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