Posts Tagged ‘Thursday’

Friday, March 2, 2012

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  Thursday, such a beautiful day.  There was a mix of grey skies but eventually the sun burst through and I could see lovely blue sky and interesting looking cloud formations.  Ethereal, misty, robust and strong .. quite a mix.

Caught a brief glance of one of the eagles high overhead.  Some low flying Canada Geese, heading for Swan Lake.

Thus far there hasn’t been a whole lot of interest in the new roofed suet holder.  I’ve seen a Chickadee or two stop by for a visit.  The Sparrows  try, but they aren’t able to cling upside down as the chickadees, bush-tits and nuthatches do!   Guess it takes a few days for my feathered friends to try something new.

Yesterday was such a day of accomplishment.  I’d spent a few hours at the kitchen table, studying more about organic gardening.  Oh my.   One of these days I’ll continue with listing some gardening information, as I used to do.  This helps me open my books and look up more information.  And I’d really like to share what I learn.

There were so many choices to make yesterday..what kind of activities could I get myself involved with .. walking, gardening, housework .. screech to a halt.  Not housework .. not when it is sunny outside.

So, as I usually do when I’m seeking inspiration .. I simply went outside.  And walked around the yard.  Noticed some daffodils are getting ready to bloom.  And the bluebells… those lovely little flowers that I’m just not able to eradicate.  They proliferate here, and having spent a lot of time over the years digging them up by the bucketful – I’ve given up on eradicating them. 

They even grow through the leaf mulch mountain, up through the gravel, and thrive just being tossed to the side.  If only the strength and sheer tenacity of the compounds of this bulb could be harvested and used for something else, like garlic or wheat …someone would make a fortune.

Anyway, I enjoyed being outside, observing any changes in the plants, loving the antics of the birds.  The Anna’s might be going through their mating rituals I think .. I should read up on this so I’ll be more informed.   All I know is that I saw the backyard Anna’s zipping around and then settle comfortably in the same tree, although on different branches.

Finally, I decided to tackle the front driveway.  We still have materials from our house renovations there.. and so I took a deep breath, and started sorting and sorting.  And sweeping.  And raking up leaves.  There were the occasional Yorkshire Tea breaks and I did settle down on the front steps .. the beautiful stairway that DH constructed last fall.  Perfect for a relaxing tea sipping, suduko solving period of time.  And, since time doesn’t exist in either gardening or outside cleanup .. I just relaxed.

Tea break over, I continued onwards and upwards.   Finally I reached the stage where I could unravel the hose and wash away the superfluous minute debris that remained. 

DH was impressed and I was satisfied with a job well done!   As I toted my tools and now-empty Rubbermaid containers from the front to the back I felt a little twinge in my back .. uh oh .. who didn’t do their stretches, then!  

I remember a Master Gardener speaking at the Garth Homer Centre many years ago … the Horticulture Society used to hold meetings there.  He was very emphatic on the importance of exercise when gardening!   Having injured his back, he spoke from experience.  Lifting properly was also discussed.  And I did listen.  Although sometimes I kind of forget.    As in yesterday!  So I stretched and crouched and soon I was back to my limber self.

That reminds me!  The Coronation Street “Rosie” lookalike who works at Dakota Cafe told me that she saw that there is a class “Exercise for Gardeners” at a local rec centre!   That is a very good idea!  Although we had a laugh as we pretended to “lift that shovel” “dig and dig” ..

Anyway .. all in all .. Thursday was a great day in every way!!  Although the same cannot be said of CBC and Coronation Street!  Argh .. I was nicely settled in and set to watch the double show of yesterday .. only to discover that a hockey game had recorded.  CBC had switched the time of the show and I had missed it. 

Although, really, what did I miss!  More badly written scripts.  The storylines have been going from worse to “I can’t believe I’m actually watching this drivel” .. this from me, who had started the first ever Coronation Street fan club in Victoria, many years ago.  I .. along with the 50 or so club members .. were all so thrilled to be watching this show. 

CS has had its ups and downs over the years, but the downs normally lasted for a short time.  Now, they just are nowhere near close to the integrity of the show as it once started out.  And the plots are laughable.  (don’t get me started!).

There is still a core group of 8 of us former CS fan club who meet monthly for dinner.  And we are all in agreement about the lack of interest in the show. We are months behind, so no point in sending Granada Studios our feedback. 

Anyway .. here are some extremely positive videos regarding our food and our planet, eloquently spoken by some young kiddies!  Enjoy:



and here’s a link to show how beautiful and easy it is to grow sweet potato vines: http://www.houseplantsforyou.com/how-to-grow-an-old-fashioned-sweet-potato-vine/



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Friday, February 10, 2012

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  Thursday morning was a little overcast .. I decided to walk over to Borden Mercantile to pick up some rock dust for our class on composting, to take place on Saturday.

That way, I could multi-task by: 

– getting a few good hours of walking exercise

– look for the Northern Shoveller

– look for the eagles

– look for any other birds

– fetch the rock dust (for Saturday’s compost class)

– just enjoy being outside in the lovely outdoors

Thus I found myself walking along the trails at the Sanctuary.  Along the way I saw some Spotted Towhees … such striking birds!  Not too many Robins were seen when I was there.

Still looking for the Cedar Waxwings that I saw last week. What a gift that was .. to see these gentle birds.

Walking along the short observatory .. .not a duck was to be seen.  Only a little wren, who was intent on digging away at some treasured seeds that were tucked away in the spaces between the boards that comprised the walkway.   I stopped in my steps while this little bird sought the treasures.  

When the bird was finished feasting and had flown away .. I continued my walk along the observatory.  Strangely quiet .. yet I couldn’t see any predators.  But they could have been well hidden.  Birds know when the predators are about.

 Happy to hear the trill of the Red Winged Blackbird … as he sat high atop a nearby tree .. trying to communicate with others of his species.

As I reached the pathway that connected to the asphalt section of the Galloping Goose .. I looked up to the flat-topped tree on Saanich Road.  That’s where I first saw the young pair of immature eagles years ago.    Now that they are more mature, sporting the distinctive white feathered head and tail feathers …they still favour this same tree.

So on Thursday morning on my walk, I noticed that one of them was sitting on a nearby oak tree.  And there I saw one of them.   Feathers slick with rain.  Fierce eyes scanning the meadows and fields of Swan Lake  below … looking for any activity that would entice them to soar down.

Such noble and magnificent beings. 

I continued on my walk along the Galloping Goose, quite quiet at this early morning time .. before the coffee breaks and lunchtime joggers had started to populate the scene.  Relishing the quiet.   Appreciating the many years it had taken me to reach this point.

Finally reached Borden Mercantile and purchased some volcanic rock dust and some kelp particles for our upcoming Saturday session, to build a composter.  Plus myself an a few others will be building some work composters.   I’ll take pictures.

Retracing my steps, I again appreciated the peacefulness of the Galloping Goose trail at this time of the morning.   Not very busy.

Couldn’t help but notice the nests from last year … clearly seen in the absence of vegetation.   And can’t help but appreciate the positivity of nest-building birds.   They just get on with it.

Once I’d approached the wooden section of the Goose, I was nearer the oak tree and saw the eagle’s mate approach ..and land .. on the oak tree.  So there the couple sat .. regally perched …silent communication … surveying the meadows below.

Humbled by the sight of this example of pure nature, I resumed my walk…. happily taking the muddy pathway of the Sanctuary .. in lieu of the asphalt walkway “up above”.

And continued home .. where I combined housework with studying.   Nerve wracking work on my assignment. sigh.  more later.

Thursday was, to say the least, “quite the day”.


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Sunday, February 5, 2012

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Friday was going to be fully devoted to studying .. so first I decided to not go for a quick (ha ha ) walk to Swan Lake.    That would have been at least a 2 hour block of time, plus time spent outside.  So I spent time going through my study materials.  And .. slowly .. the new vocabulary of understanding is making its way through to my mind.

I figure that once I have a much better understanding of the activity of the critters in the soil and how they interact with each other – then I’ll be happy.   Once I can easily explain what I know, then the knowledge will be more fully settled in my brain.

Wouldn’t it be fun if I could just hold the books to my forehead and do a Star Trek mind-meld!  Unfortunately, learning has to be done the old-fashioned way.

We did a soil texture test in class on Thursday and today I’ll be writing up my analysis on one of the two samples (or perhaps I’ll prepare an analysis for each of them).   It’s fascinating to see the 3 layers settle.  Sand at the bottom, silt in the middle and clay at the top.

Here’s a good link to understanding soil:  http://urbanext.illinois.edu/soil/SoilBiology/fw&soilhealth.htm

It is listed in our classroom information and has very important, easy to understand information on soil.

Anyway .. yesterday I worked away again .. and I’m beginning to think about soil all the time .. this course is very challenging to me.  And I find that I am quite enjoying the challenge of learning the new concepts that this in-depth study of the ecosystems of gardening quite exciting!

Also yesterday, DH & I went flying .. it’s been a long time.  Beautiful sunny day .. as we flew around .. I started looking at the fields and farms below me in a new way.  Wondering which farms were using organic methods and which were using pesticides.

Enjoyed the magnificent beauty of the snow-covered mountains below … we wiggled our wings at some snowmobilers who were blazing trails high on a hilltop.   Glad to see other happy people out and enjoying the day.

Magical being up in the sky … not much traffic in the early afternoon.    Lovely .. lovely .. lovely ..

Then …. back to terra firma … while DH fueled up the plane, I tended to my co-pilot duties … assisting in pushing the plane back to it’s “parking spot”, tying up the ropes to the wings & tail, putting the reflector back against the interior windshield, buckling up seat belts nice and tidy.

Once everything was done .. we sat outside in the sunshine.  As DH filled out the logbook, I took the opportunity to read my course book .. noticing as I did so .. that more and more of the terminology is becoming a little more familiar.  Gadzooks!!

Back home .. we decided to use one of our Groupons to visit the Flying Otter restaurant.  And to combine this with exercise, we decided to leave the car at home and walk there .. it’s really a short 45 minute walk to downtown .. and it was such a lovely day.

Walking along the Galloping Goose .. we heard someone call out those words “to your left” and expected to see another bicyclist zoom by .. instead, we saw this cool recumbent bike, complete with a cover, resembled a low slung racecar.  I managed to take a quick pic before it sped away.

It’s been months since we’ve been downtown and there are so many changes going on.  The famous Blue Bridge will soon disappear .. there will be a more “modern” one built as a replacement.

We made our way to the Flying Otter .. a floating restaurant.  Full of tables facing the water.  We managed to get a nice high table nice and close to the bar.  I was noticing the bartender filling glasses with a variety of beers from the taps and was quite interested in one that was sort of rose colour.  He poured me a little taste and I was hooked.  I love bitter beers and this filled the bill with the additional delicate taste of black currants.

The food was delicious and the service was upbeat.  We plan to return.

It was so much fun walking along, arm in arm – downtown.  Years ago, before the city grew so much, the streets were quite quiet and we used to visit the downtown area often.   So it was a treat to do this again.  Although, this is the quiet season, quite a change in the summer time.   I much prefer this time of the year to visit here.

We made our way over to the bus stop … and find that we just missed the one that would take us home … debated over just standing there waiting .. or just simply walk home.  And we did just that!   In no time at all, it seemed, we were at our front door!

Home sweet home!   In just 3 hours we had walked to town, dined on a lovely meal and walked home again.  No parking concerns.  No traffic concerns!

Saturday was a great day.

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