Posts Tagged ‘little echo’

Thursday, February 16, 2012

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Wednesday was such a beautiful day .. it was the day that my pal D and I were making the long trek to Sooke to collect seaweed.

I’d practised packing the car with Rubbermaid containers, wanting to get the maximum amount of seaweed as possible.  My little Echo hatchback has lots of interior room, once I fold down the back seats.  I carefully lined the sides and floor of the back with tarps, played around with placements and then arranged the containers.  I also brought along a shovel and garden fork, which I found .. I didn’t need at all.

D is the perfect person for this trip .. as she has worked in the holistic health category for quite a number of years.  She is so very knowledgeable in the ways of nature and the uses of items found in nature, in particular .. seaweed!   We chatted about gardening on the way to Sooke.

It has been many years since I’d driven out that way and, despite the many changes that have taken place, I found that, once I’d driven a number of miles, I felt the familiarity of the roads.  And we discussed that subject yesterday.

About having been somewhere . .years ago.  Then revisiting that area, all the memories come flooding back ..like “oh, yeah .. there is the restaurant … and here is that tree” .. that sort of thing.

I think that we really do remember so very much that has gone on in our lives .. and when we don’t need access to that information, it is filed neatly away in proper little labelled “files” in our subconscious .. easily brought out when needed.

Anyway, we had a great trip out there .. and suddenly, we were at Whiffen Spit!  Alongside the famed Sooke Harbour House!.

We met many lovely dogs, and their owners, of course!  We walked for miles. We collected a great variety of seaweed, grasses and kelp.  And I literally stuffed the containers so full that they couldn’t hold a speck more.  Then I moved the containers to the area by the car and one by one loaded them in.

I was especially interested in the “Turkish Facecloth” type of seaweed.  D explained how to use this .. once it’s dried, you can use this as an exfoliant .. and then, dry it and use it again.   And she showed me the properties of other sea items .. but .. my memory is short .. so I will ask her for the names and will post them at a later date.

She also told me about a lady, Christine (sp?), who gives workshops at French Beach .. so I’ll post that information once I have a link.

And I learned that there are different seaweeds available at different times.  Some are living entities, attaching themselves to rocks and need to be cut, with scissors.

Oh, my .. so much more learning to do.   I must admit that, although I was totally aware that seaweed & kelp is good for the garden ..I’d started gathering it over 20 + years ago .. I wasn’t totally aware “why” it is good!.

We had a lovely long walk along the breakwater area .. talked and talked and I tried to remember what I learned!

The smashing sound of the waves breaking against the shore .. all that thundering energy of nature … the brief spot of silence once the waves had dissolved .. and then the tinkling of the stones as they settled in again on the shore … were mesmerizing.

Sat on a bench and watched the surf.   And the antics of some lovely Gold Crowned Sparrows.  Flying around.  Foraging and munching.   Fluffing out their feathers and basking in the sun.

A few Mallards flying about.  A few seagulls.

More later.

Time to go home .. and we stopped at the most wonderful little cafe …http://www.stickinthemud.ca/  talked with the owner.  He was so very witty, despite not having an English accent!   He and the wonderful young gals and guys running the cafe were just absolutely wonderful!  As D noted, this is a place where one could feel very comfortable just being there, every day!  And I concur!  I am not the type of person who is easily comfortable sitting in a Starbucks or a Tim Horton’s establishment.  But, this Stick in the Mud has just the right atmosphere.  I could easily see myself visiting the cafe on a regular basis.  Cup of tea, visit with the regulars.  Pity it’s so far from home.

Oh, and their sausage rolls are just exquisite!  There was only one left so D & I shared.   Yum .. .Yum!    And we also shared a type of butter tart, mixed with raspberries on a base of shortbread.   Oh.  My.   And so I bought two to take home to DH.  And I didn’t even nibble on either one of them.  Such strength of character.   I saved them both for him.

I’m thinking that it’s even worth a quick trip out to Sooke to get more of these goodies.  Hmmmm .. perhaps next week.

So .. yesterday was a treat.  It was absolutely wonderful to wander along the way in the warm sunshine.  Visiting with all the lovely dogs that we met .. I just wanted to hug them all, they were so very sweet and trusting.  What a treasure that was to me.   Sweet memories.   And you know how dogs communicate with their eyes!!  So expressive.

Anyway .. time to call it a day .. and more tomorrow!


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Friday, October 28, 2011

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Yesterday was an interesting one.  Looked out the window first thing and was shocked to see frost in the back yard!   The sun quickly took care of that and the day unfolded in a pleasant sunny way.

In my first trip to gather some of my cached bagged leaves..  I was able to shove 9 bags into my car …my little Echo was crammed to the gills!   Quickly made my way home, tossed the bags onto the driveway and was soon heading back again.

Suddenly I noticed my neighbour’s husband frantically waving to me .. curious .. I drove into their driveway.   His car battery (a new one!) refused to start so he requested a charge from my car.     Soon, the cables were connected, his car started and he was all set to go to an appointment.

I thought about the timing of things.   How sometimes just being somewhere, randomly, results in the opportunity to help others.   If I had decided to just make the one trip for leaves, I would have been in the back yard and thus he wouldn’t have known to ask for my assistance.

If I’d thought that he was just happily waving “good morning” to me as I was driving away .. I wouldn’t have noticed that his car’s hood was up.

Anyway, my second car load was 8 bags .. so I’m doing ok.

Once home, I then raked up another large orange bag full of leaves.  And slowly began the dance of the moving leaf bags.

From car to driveway.  From sidewalk to the back yard.  Then the little march to the mulch area and I soon had the 18 full bags emptied onto the previous layers.

Ok, now the level  is a bit high and I wonder if I have too much?  (perish that thought).  After a liberal dousing of water and determined stomping on my part, the mulch has again decreased in size.  And I remind myself that it will again diminish over the fall/winter/spring.   As I will keep turning it over and over .. waiting for that lovely heat that will start in the middle as the leaves break down.  Oh happy days.

Ok .. where to start next .. I think I’ve earned a little break, so quickly make Y tea, grab a Sudoku and settle on the back steps.  Sitting in the warmth of the sunshine.  Watching the leaves of the wild and crazy tree fall around the yard like multi-coloured little rain drops, soft silky sounds as they whirl through the air.

And I can take a few pics now .. so I wander around.  Suddenly I see a little bird at the high energy suet block.  It looks like a little Chickadee, with the black stripe across its eyes and face, but his little throat is white and chest is a rosy colour.   The wings look faintly blue/gray.  I quickly take as many photos as I can, and look up in one of my bird books and discover that it is a Red-breasted Nuthatch.  Oh, he is so very darling!  Moves quickly .. as all the small birds must do, in order to survive.

I admire their beauty and am so grateful that there is such a variety of birds in our yard this year.  Quite exciting.   I keep missing the Spotted Towhee ..I know he’s out there.

Well .. now is the time to take some yard cuttings out to the front, to be taken to the local municipal hall.   Passing by my car, I decided that this is a good time to do a clean up.  Try to think of the last time this was done .. hmmmm. … oh well ….

Soon I’m vacuuming up the remaining bits of hay (bags & bales from a few years ago)!  Scrubbing away at all the surfaces, removing mud, bits of leaves.   Spraying the windows inside and out, so now they sparkle (well, not really, but it seemed like a good thing to say!)

Lately I’ve been sorting and decluttering and along the way I’ve been finding things that I’d given up looking for.  Well .. another incidence of finding lost items occurred while I was busy cleaning up the car.

Noticed some bits of metallic wire caught on the carpet behind the driver’s seat .. curious … bent down to untangle whatever it was.  And there .. was a little dragon earring that I’d made a few years ago, on a hot summer’s day – over on Salt Spring island!  There were a group of us .. settled around an outside table .. containers of beads, wires, tiny decorations .. a treasure trove of jewellery making supplies.

So I’d made my first pair of earrings, they looked so pretty, gold coloured wire wrapped around little beads and amber coloured stones.   And a little dragon trailing from each earring.    Later on I’d gone shopping and during the shopping and driving activities, suddenly noticed that one of my earrings was missing.  Looked absolutely everywhere .. and finally gave up.

Had to chuckle, what I thought I’d lost was really with me all the time.   Maybe this little cleaning session will prove as a good reminder to make this into a habit.  Who knows what other treasures I’ll find!  Besides the odd quarter, nickel and pennies!

All done … the car does look nice and tidy.   I’ll really make an effort to keep it like that from now on.   It will be nice to be out driving and not see dust patterns on the dash!

Time to put all my cleaning tools away .. and go to the back yard.   Everything is settling down for the fall and winter seasons.   My garlic is all planted, more than I need and some to give to friends!  I’m really looking forward to next years crop .. now that the bulbs have been planted in the sunny area of the yard and are well mulched.  I plan to layer some of those lovely oak leaves on the surface of the garlic bed one of these days.

Soon the late afternoon takes on a bit of a chill .. so time to head inside, think about what to make for supper.

But first, I go to the back stairs .. and just sit down for a few minutes.  Taking the time to just look around the yard .. to appreciate all the growing things.  The magic of the birds.  The smell of the autumn leaves.   Knowing we have good neighbours all around us.

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