Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Suddenly Summer

I wait all winter for it to be summer again, and it seems like I’ve hardly had a chance to notice that it’s here! But it definitely is, and I’ve decided that it’s time to stop and smell the…er…cilantro.

There was an avocado sitting there, just waiting to be turned into guacamole, so after work today I headed out to the garden to snip a bit of cilantro. I grabbed my camera on the way and managed to drop it. It hit the floor pretty hard – I actually grabbed my camera case and was swinging the strap over my head and the camera flew out – and now I have this black crack across the top of the view screen…


So mad at myself. I love this little camera. It still works, it’s just that I like to take care of my things. So that put a bit of a damper on my sunny afternoon, but I headed out anyway.

I have cilantro growing in two spots. First, in this container, along with some pepper plants and purple basil.



A second plant is at the opposite end of my veggie patch, where I have a bunch of herbs in the ground.



These were plants from the garden center. I also have some seeds in and hopefully they will grow. We like cilantro!

While I was out there, I figured I might as well do a little tour of the veggie garden. Things are really coming along now. At the beginning of the season, things seem to go slowly. You put in your tomato plants and it seems like not much is going on. Then suddenly they start to grow. You can almost see it!

Remember those Potato Tubs I planted when my parents were visiting in May? Those little seed potatoes have turned into plants that are just bursting out of the sacks. I also have a couple of tomato plants in containers at then end of the garden – as usual.


This is a view of my little veggie garden, from where the potato tubs are. This end is where I have some herbs, garlic and bunching onions growing.


And then many, many tomato plants.


There is nothing like tomatoes fresh from the garden!

Here I have some miniature cucumber seeds planted. They are just starting to come up.



At the other end, I have lettuce, cabbage, peas and beans. I think it won’t be long before I have lettuce! I could definitely pull up some of those bunching onions now. Throw in some purple basil and I’ll have a salad!


And of course more containers with mostly tomatoes, but also the peppers and herbs that I mentioned at the beginning….Excuse me while I snip a bit of cilantro! 



On the deck, I have one more container.

IMG_9116This is a Tomato Success Kit from Veseys. When I saw this in the catalog, I couldn’t resist giving it a try. Technically, the deck is not full sun, which tomatoes should really have. But, when the sun is shining, it’s the hottest spot in our yard so I’m hoping it will be ok.

Looks promising; I can see buds forming already.


Tomorrow is Canada Day which means a holiday – no work! And Husband & I took Friday off. The weather forecast is looking pretty good, so I have four whole days to slow down and soak up some summer!

Hope you all have a happy Canada Day and a great weekend!

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

At last you belong to me!

Once a year, in June, there is a huge Paderno sale at Harbour Station. Once a year, Husband and I have way too much fun walking around at the Paderno sale and spending money. We both love kitchen stuff. For a quite a few years now I have been dreaming of a Kitchen Aid Stand Mixer and this year at the Paderno sale they had them for $200 off....So guess what we walked out with!

After our expensive Paderno shopping trip, we headed out to dinner and to Costco. This is becoming our Friday night routine. Costco just opened here at the beginning of June. We have been loving their produce section.

The rest of the weekend went by in a blur, including some gardening. Among other things, I planted my two new tomato plants in containers. Still lots to do though.


We've also been picking away at cleaning out the storage closet in our basement and Sunday we decided to just keep going and pull everything out. Many boxes were set aside to be dealt with later as we tackled the boxes of books. Many boxes of books.

Husband and I both read fantasy novels, which tend to come in series. We often find ourselves standing in the book store wondering whether we have a particular book sitting on the shelf (or packed away in a box) waiting to be read. So we decided to catalog all of our books. We had started a couple of weeks ago, doing a couple of boxes at a time, but then things got busy and the cataloging came to a standstill. Sunday we decided to keep going until they were done.

Then, I started sorting books by author, stacking them on the kitchen table.



Eventually the table was filled to capacity and I started putting books back into boxes, but this time they are at least sorted (we do plan to get more bookcases, we never intended these boxes to sit around for so long).

Eventually we decided we should break for supper. When I looked at the clock, it was 9 pm. No wonder I was tired and cranky. And we are nowhere near finished.

I've got boxes of books stacked in the living room (sorted).

There are still books and boxes on and around and under the kitchen table.

Husband wants to get rid of a bunch of books. He has no specific books in mind, he just decided that we should decrease the collection by half. Let's just say we have differing opinions on this matter.

There are boxes full of other stuff all over the basement.

Our house is still not quite put back together after the great living room makeover of 2010 (ongoing).

And. We are having company this weekend.

I'm a little stressed out.

At least the cats are happy.


Friday, June 18, 2010

My Tomato Obsession

As if I don't have enough tomato plants already, look what I bought while I was out and about on my lunch break today. For $1 each, a yellow and an orange grape tomato.

Blog posts from yours truly have been scarce of late, but rest assured that I have been busily planting gardens - both flower and vegetable - and I hope to update the blog soon. Aiming for this weekend.

Stay tuned!

Tuesday, June 8, 2010


This past weekend was a bust weather-wise – it rained buckets – and we haven’t quite made it back to sunny skies yet, so it seems like a good time for a rewind.

The Saturday before last was beautiful, hot and sunny. We had to take the cats to the Vet in the morning. This always stresses me out, as the cats don’t like it and the meow pitifully for the entire car ride, there and back. Makes me feel awful. This year it was worse because the Vet we have always gone to retired last fall so we had to go to a new Vet (strike 1) which is a little bit of a longer drive for the cats to put up with (strike 2) and for some reason Husband was dragging his feet and I knew we were going to end up being late (strike 3).

But we did make it, only a few minutes late and we all survived. The cats passed their checkups with flying colors and the Vet commented on their temperament – even though they were obviously not happy to be there, they were quite easy going about the whole thing.

Since we were almost to the Farmer’s Market, we went there after leaving the Vet’s office and picked up a bunch of produce, then headed home. I expected that Husband would want to stay home while I went out for groceries, but he surprised me by coming along. In retrospect, I think he was afraid I would come home with whole wheat buns for the hamburgers we were planning to BBQ if he let me go on my own (and I probably would have).

While I certainly have to objections to hanging out with the Husband, I had planned to visit the garden center after getting groceries. I mentioned it to Husband and said we could go home and I could come back on my own if he wanted, but he said to go. Then of course he stood around looking bored so I didn’t feel like I could take my time and enjoy it.

Which means that Trip #1 to the Garden Center this  year didn’t see me bring much home.

IMG_8945 IMG_8946

Once we unloaded the groceries, I headed back out. It was time to finally start doing something with the flower bed by the driveway.


Since the crocuses in April, there have been violets…


Which are gone now, and periwinkle…IMG_8865

Which is still blooming – I think this will pretty much keep blooming all summer, but I can’t remember for sure.

Right now, we also have this stuff which I planted last summer…


I forget what it was called, but I definitely don’t remember it flowering like this last year.


Pretty stuff.

But, there is still lots of space to fill in, so I got to work; as it turns out, it was just as well that I didn’t bring too many plants home.

We noticed that we had some sort of insect nest it the top left hand corner of this flower bed. We knew they were there but couldn’t figure out exactly where their entrance hole was, so we asked our landscapers to check it out (Husband is seriously allergic to stinging insects). The landscapers said they found multiple entrance holes, and they sprayed and hoped they had got it all.

Unfortunately they didn’t. We were still seeing a few insects buzzing around, and when I got out there and started digging, there were obvious holes. For example…


Normally, I like to evenly distribute plants as I go, but this time I decided to stick to the opposite end of the garden. Better safe than sorry.

So the after doesn’t look all the much different.


It will take some time for the new plants to fill out and start blooming.

Saturday evening I went out and did some puttering in the fenced in part of the yard. I was excited to see my irises starting to bloom.


At the back, beside the chimney pipe is a patch of comfrey. It grows really huge and ends up pushing stuff in font of it over. I had intended to dig it up this spring and move it, but I didn’t get to and and before I knew it it was too huge.

I decided to try cutting some of it down with my new Harvesting knife.


I sort of felt like a murderer, cutting down innocent plants in their prime…but it had to be done. I chopped down the front row – knife works like a charm – but still left a good sized patch.



The flowers are actually quite pretty.

IMG_8979 IMG_8982 IMG_8988

Right now, my striped phlox is also blooming. Love this stuff!


Along with Lily of the Valley, which always make me think of home and my mother’s garden (which is where these came from).


The forecast is still not looking great for the next day or two, but hopefully we’ll get some sun soon – or at least drier weather. So much gardening to do, so little time!

Thursday, June 3, 2010

June: Ch-ch-ch-changes…

May has flown by. I don’t know where it went. So it’s time for my monthly workout review…Toward the end of the month I was really busy so there were a lot of missed workouts, and when I did work out I wasn’t always so good about keeping track…But I think this is more or less accurate:

May 29: 30 min walk
May 28: 40 min walk
May 26: Upper Body A [30 mins]
May 23: 30 min walk
May 18: Upper Body B + Cardio[40 mins]
May 17: 40 min walk
May 15: Lower Body A + Cardio[60 mins]
May 14: Cardio[40 mins]
May 10: Upper Body A + Cardio[60 mins]
May 06: Lower Body B + Finisher(4:35:48) + Cardio[55 mins]
May 05: Upper Body B[30 mins]
May 04: 40 min walk
May 03: Lower Body A + Finisher for time(5:59:00) + Cardio[60 mins]

At the end of April, I almost decided that it was time to take a break from Lindsey’s fitness coaching for a while. At the last minute I changed my mind and decided to give it another month. But May demonstrated that it is definitely time to take a break. I’m not keeping up with the workouts. There are so many other things that I want/need to be doing. So it’s time to go back to my whimsical what-kind-of-workout-do-I-feel-like-today routine. 

This is not really surprising. I find I can only stick to a specific schedule for a while, then I need to take a break. Lately workouts have been feeling like a chore. So it’s definitely time for a change [even if that is a change back to my old exercise habits].

Although there will be a little bit of “new” thanks to my newest piece of exercise equipment, which my Dad installed for me when he was here.

IMG_9016 IMG_9017

That would be a Perfect Pullup system.Which I have only had a chance to try out once, but I definitely think it will be useful. The top bar actually swings down, so you can use it for different exercises, not just pullups. Pretty nifty.

This past week has involved activity of a different kind though. Perhaps this will give you a hint.

IMG_9001Sofa in the kitchen? That’s brilliant! Why didn’t we think of this ages ago!

 IMG_9005Woo hoo! I am Super Zappa! Defending the innocent and…Zzzzzzz… 


Hey! Furniture without a covering of beautiful, silvery cat hair! How did that happen! Must take steps to rectify immediately and…Zzzzzzzz…

So yeah. We’ve been tearing our house apart and rearranging things. Again. Still. Forever.

Someday we might actually be finished.


There has been a little teeny bit of gardening. Not enough. And now that I’m starting to think I might have time to get my tomatoes planted, the weather has gone into the crapper. Little bit disappointed, yes I am.

Oh well. There’s still lots to do inside the house. And I do have some garden pics that haven’t been posted yet, so I’ll try to get those up sometime soon.

In the mean time, check out these photos that I got with my Zoom lens the other night. Hello Mr. Gopher!

IMG_9008 IMG_9013I’m pretty sure my cats are bigger than you; Better stay clear of Super Zappa…You know…if he ever finishes napping…Zzzzzzzzz!