Wednesday, June 22, 2016

I'm Still Here

:: When I first took this picture I thought this squirrel was eating a peanut. I later realized that no, it wasn't a peanut. It was a raspberry from my bushes in front of the porch. I guess it was tired of eating the seeds and new plants in my garden and decided to add in a new food group.

:: Garlic scapes might be my very favourite thing to harvest from the garden. (Thankfully the squirrels and birds don't seem to like garlic, so it's left for me to consume.) Between the community garden, and the crop in my own garden boxes, there's been an abundance of scapes. I use them in lots of ways. I throw them in with pea pods and steam them. I put them into omelettes. I make garlic scape pesto. I even roast them in the oven.

:: The community garden is next to the pond, which is home to a pair of swans. They are actually quite nasty birds, and have attacked several residents here. I choose my path carefully when I go down to the garden, making sure I don't get near them. They don't like to be outsmarted though, so often will come sit just outside the gate to the fenced in garden area after they see me enter, making it impossible to leave.

:: Great excitement this week, as my Book of Haps by Kate Davies has arrived. I haven't started knitting a  hap yet, but will be soon. It's going to be hard to decide which one to knit first!

:: Along with garlic scapes, this is also the season for thimbleberries. They grow in abundance in the surrounding forest, and every day I eat handfuls of them.

:: I've done a bit of sewing. This is my denim version of the Willow Tank & Dress. I think it will be great to wear this fall with leggings and a long-sleeved shirt. My original plan had been to distress the denim and do some Sashiko embroidery on it, but now I'm having second thoughts.

:: Last, but not least, there's been some knitting happening. I joined The Shawl Society. It was a rather odd thing to do since I rarely knit shawls, but I really enjoy the Curious Handmade forum on Ravelry, and Helen's Curious Handmade podcast, so I decided to give it a try. There will be one shawl pattern released every month for the next six months. I don't plan to knit every one of them, but I did join in for the first pattern, the Talisman Shawl.

:: Lucy has a birthday coming up next month, so I've been busy making her present. This is Egg to Owl, and once I got the head stabilized (it looked like an owl imitating Nearly Headless Nick until I got it fixed) I was quite pleased with it. I hope Lucy will be too.

:: The world seems to have gone a bit crazy lately. It seems fitting to borrow the closing line my blogging friend at Hostess of the Humble Bungalow uses in each of her posts. Be Well and Be Kind.

Saturday, June 4, 2016

Out and About

I have to say I was overwhelmed and touched by your comments and support after my post about Fergus getting attacked by the German shepherd. So many of you have had similar experiences, or know of someone who has. In the end I did file a complaint about the dog, as so many of you had encouraged me to do. Now, on to more pleasant things!

A few weeks ago my brother came up for a quick visit. He's a walker too, so we always manage to get in a hike or two when he is here.

In spite of the fact he had just had shoulder surgery he decided he wanted to attempt to climb up Mt. Cheam with me. You can see Mt. Cheam peaking out in the top right of the picture above. The mountain is accessed by driving up a very rough forestry road. You have to have an off road vehicle to attempt it, which my brother does. We didn't make it to the top due to the amount of snow on the trail, but we did have a great time. I think the ride up that road was almost more of a workout than the hike itself!

Last weekend Rebekah, Ella and I went up to visit Alexandra in Kamloops for the weekend. We also spent time with our friends out in Sorrento, and while we were out walking in the forested area of their property we spotted some wildflowers. Tiger lilies always brighten up the path.

My favourites though are the lady's slippers. You can see how they got their name.

The evening light and the mountain background near our cottage combined to make one of the most beautiful rainbows I have ever seen.

I liked how this snail was colour coordinated with the dead leaf next to it.

The salmonberries are ripe. There's a big patch of them I go by when I walk to the lake, so I've been snacking on them on a regular basis.

While walking last week I spotted this lichen. It was hard to miss, as it was practically glowing.

The devil's club is in abundance when I hike up Teapot Hill.

And, of course, there have been more teapots spotted on Teapot Hill. This time it looked like someone was having a tea party.

Balance in life is so important. I'm so very fortunate to live in a place where I'm surrounded by natural beauty. I was so stressed about what happened last week, and it was a gift to be able to walk out my door and be surrounded by nature. There's something very healing about the smell of the forest, the sound of the birds singing in the trees and bushes, the mix of colours and light, and the unexpected beauty of something as simple as a snail or a patch of lichen. Have a great weekend!