Summer 2015

Thursday, July 2, 2015

a quiet celebration

We got up early on Canada Day morning - at 6:20 - as it was warm and the sun was shining.  I decided it would be a good time to go out and take some pictures.  I absolutely love mornings like this in the summer.....warm temperature, sunshine, no wind.....fog laying over the valley and rising up over the hill.....hazy skies.  A perfect summer morning.  

Murray mowed the lawn and whipper snipped all around the property and cleaned up the garage.  I did some pruning of shrubs, made biscuits and did very little else.  :-}

We went to the berry field and picked strawberries.  It was slim picking though but we managed to get 2 boxes of big juicy berries.

Yummy strawberry shortcake.  I didn't have cream to whip so Cool Whip it is.  :-}

When we arrived at the berry field there was a Killdeer flying all over and acting very defensive then we noticed a taped off area in the parking lot.  The staff person said the Killdeer had laid her eggs on the gravel parking lot the day before.  Not exactly great timing for berry pickers coming and parking there!  

Can you see the Killdeer?  They blend in so well with the ground that they are almost 'invisible'.  (the photo is highly cropped too) 

And the eggs blend in very well too!  I had a difficult time picking them out of all the rocks around them.  I really hope these eggs survive and hatch into little Killdeer.  It's going to be pretty tough in the area where they are with so many people coming and going.

This is the Killdeer that was on the eggs.  They will lead their 'prey' away from the nest and pretend they are injured to distract them.  Nature is so incredibly beautiful isn't it? 

We barbecued hamburgers for supper along with left over potatoes fried up and salad AND Strawberry Shortcake for dessert!  After supper we went for a long walk.  Since Murray had to work today he went to bed earlier than I.  The full moon was covered by heavy clouds that rolled in about mid-afternoon, although it never rained here.  Since we didn't get to town to take part in the Canada Day festivities I thought I'd try to see the fire works from our deck.  I kept going outside from about 10:20 on and finally at 10:40 they were visible on the horizon.  I could hear fireworks going off all around our area too.  


And that was our Canada Day.  Quietly celebrated at home.

Tomorrow we are off to Moncton and the Fundy Coast for a day trip.  We plan to visit the Hopewell Rocks and I'll have lots of pictures to share with you.

Thanks for all your visits and comments.  I hope you are having a good week.  I'll be thinking of my American friends as you celebrate July 4th Independence Day on Saturday.  Have Fun!


Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Happy Canada Day!

The flags on the left and right of our maple left flag were the original flags of our country and were mine when I was a little girl.  The Union Jack is Britain's flag and the Red Ensign was our first flag.

Canada is celebrating 148 years of Confederation on July 1st.  
I decided to decorate the shelf in the stairwell of our front entry with some vintage items in a red and white theme.

This little red car was Murray's so it got a spot on the shelf next to 1 of 3 old doorknobs.

I also have placed some flags around outside.

I find that Canada is becoming a lot more patriotic than it used to be and I love celebrating our wonderful country where we have many freedoms that other countries don't get to enjoy.  

We have a beautiful and vast country that stretches from the Pacific Ocean in the west to the Atlantic Ocean in the east and from the Arctic Ocean in the north to the US border.  

We are very blessed to live in such a wonderful country and for that I am truly grateful.  

We hope to take in some of the festivities in Fredericton.  The weather may just cooperate with sunshine and a risk of showers in the evening.  Hopefully they won't spoil the fireworks on the river. 

I wish all my Canadian friends here and abroad a fantastic holiday!
  Enjoy it and be safe.

O Canada
O Canada! our home and native land!
True patriot love in all thy sons command.
With glowing hearts we see thee rise,
The True North, strong and free.
From far and wide O Canada
We stand on guard for thee.
God keep our land, glorious and free!
O Canada, we stand on guard for thee.
O Canada, we stand on guard for thee.

Blessings to you,

Sunday, June 28, 2015

around the yard at the end of June

Swallowtail butterfly on the lilac bush.

I thought I'd share a few pictures I've taken lately around our yard to compare the growth in our gardens.

A beautiful Saturday morning on the hill behind our house.

Weeding the garden is a weekly thing, especially after a rain when those little green weed sprouts pop up so fast.  As you can see by the 'new' grass behind the garden we've cut our weeding job by half this year.  :-}
We do have some beans and peas popping up too!  The carrots and beets aren't doing so well though.  Maybe I planted them too deep.

I don't see any rocks.  Do you see any?  Oh, I see a weed there though.

My neighbour's Rhododendron and yard.

This garden is at the side of our property (looking at the neighbour's house).

I'm not sure what's going on with this little bed of perennials this year.  I put this in about 12 years ago around 2 stumps but an ant colony that I can't seem to get rid of is to the left of the stump where the gnome is sitting.  The stump is starting to break down because it's riddled with ants!!  I've put Insectigone all over that area but the ants aren't dying off.  The short plants are Rudbekia and they are usually  much taller by now.  The Purple Aster in front of it was moved there this spring as it wasn't doing well in it's former location and it's still not doing great.  The Sedum is growing beautifully but there is a Liatris behind it that is shorter than usual.  I fertilized the plants once and will do again when the rain stops.

We had some space at the back of the veggie garden so I planted Cosmos, Zinnias and Alyssum.  They look rather skimpy yet but will fill out.....if the deer don't eat them.

The rock garden is filling in and will soon have lots of pinks and purples.

One night last week we has a spectacular sunset.  It was cloudy in the evening but clearing in the west as the sun was setting.  The clouds looked like they were dipped in pink paint.  

We had a fantastic day yesterday for the music festival with gorgeous sunshine.  I'll share more of that later in the week.  Today is cloudy and 17 waiting on the rain to start.  

Have a blessed week ahead.  I'll be back soon with a Canada Day post.


Thursday, June 25, 2015

a walk on the wild side

Buttercup and Wild Geranium

I went for a walk Tuesday morning, minus my camera, and noticed so many pretty wildflowers blooming along the road, in the ditch and in the fields.  After I got home I got my camera and went for another short walk to take photos.  I intended to post this on Tuesday but was having blogger issues and couldn't load photos.  I tried again today and all was well.  :-)

Buttercups and Forget-me-nots.

Guernsey cattle in a field of buttercups.

On Monday evening we drove by this pastoral scene with the cows in a full field of buttercups as the sun was lowering in the sky so, I thought I'd walk up and get a photo.  As I got closer I heard a tractor and as I passed the trees I saw the farmer was cutting the field!  I was quite disappointed not to get a photo of the full field of buttercups and cows but this one will do too.

Daisy Fleabane

A wildflower variety in one spot.

Looking down the farm lane with the tall grasses growing in the centre of it.

Wild Geranium ?  Do my flower friends know what this is for sure?  I checked on Google and found similar images but not this exact one.  Whatever it is it's such a pretty blue.  Barbara Lillian, a blogger from France, correctly identified this as Meadow Cranesbill.  Mystery is solved.  :)

The Lupins are still blooming but some are also going to seed.

pretty grasses

We're supposed to have sunshine through Sunday except for the chance of a shower this afternoon.  It's still not very hot here as temperatures are in the low 20's and I prefer the mid-20's of course.  Hopefully it will be warming up more soon.  In the meantime I'm grateful for the sunny days even if it feels a bit like early fall. Haha!

 We have a busy weekend coming up with a contemporary worship concert at Snider Mountain Ranch near Sussex where Paul Coleman, The City Harmonic, Chelsey Amber, The Broadcast Music, and The LaPointes will be performing.  On Sunday we have our Summer Music Night at our church featuring the choir and guests.  I'm looking forward to both events!

I hope you enjoy the first weekend of summer!  Next week is Canada Day on July 1 and Independence Day in the US on July 4.  I think we'll all be doing a little celebrating!  

Have a great day!


Friday, June 19, 2015

in the good old summertime...

Summer officially arrives on Sunday, June 21, so I thought I'd show you some old summertime photos that I found in a small carved wooden box that came from my Grammie's house.  They were in an envelope marked "The Farm" with a few other photos.  

In the 1800's my great grandparents and my grandparents were merchants and traders as well as shipbuilders in Moncton, New Brunswick.  They were wealthy enough to own a lot of property and by the late 1800's my grandparents had a large home in the city and a farmhouse in the country.   The above photo is at the farmhouse in the summer.  That is my grandmother on the left but I don't know who the others are.  The young girl could possibly be my aunt, the one who had the tea room called Hillsteps in 1932.  I love the wicker chaise and the fact that they are knitting while sitting in the sun.  {I'm sure it was posed as ladies didn't sit in the sun much in those days.} My grandmother appears to be inspecting the work of one of the ladies.  I only remember my grandmother with white hair (much like mine is getting to be!) worn in a bun at the back of her head so to see that she had brunette hair (as I do did) makes me smile. (see the labels below this post for links to posts about Hillsteps)

This is an early photo of the farmhouse.  Look at the beautiful gardens along the pathway to the front door!  The farm was on a hill that overlooked the city which was miles away then but today the city has spread out to this road.  I like the large veranda along the side with the glassed in room at the top.  I wonder how one accessed that room.  What a view they would have had from there! How I'd love to have seen this beautiful farm as it was back then.  

Do you see the boy on the horse?  Someone wrote on the back of the photo that it is father.  He was born in 1896 and looks to be about 10 years of age in this photo.  He was quite a horseman and was in the cavalry during World War 1.  Note that the glassed in section of the veranda is missing.  The extension on the back of the house would be the summer kitchen. The house burned one day when the family was in town.  I suppose they had a wood fire on.  My father told the story that on the way out the road from town the horses pulling their carriage or wagon got really anxious and started galloping faster and smoke could be seen.  I don't know who all was where that day but it's sad the the house burned down.  I have a photo of my grandfather on a horse in the winter of 1924 there so I'm not sure when the property was sold.  There is a modern house on that spot today which was built in the 1970's, I think, and the city has grown up around there now.  You wouldn't know it was out in the 'boonies' even when I was growing up if you saw it today.

Here's another great old photo.  A couple of ladies all ready to go fishing.  That might be my aunt on the left.  Does anyone know the year and make of this old car?  I'm guessing it's a Ford from the 1920's or thereabouts.  What do you think?

These next two are newer.....well, the 1950's new.  

This is a family picnic in 1952.  My brother is on our aunt's lap and he is 1, next to them is my great-aunt, then my older sister (9), Dad, and Mum trying to feed me (2) a banana but I swung my head away just as my great-uncle took the photo.  :)  This looks more like a snack than a real picnic.  Probably to feed hungry little ones while out for a drive.  We usually met up with my great aunt and uncle at a picnic spot but I'm not sure where this one was.

Daddy, baby sister Margaret, me, little brother Johnnie, big sister Pat (standing), Grammie, cousin Joan and her friend.  Note the vintage car too.  
This is a family picnic at Penobsquis, NB in 1958.  I'm the 3rd from the left sitting down and that is my Grammie (with her white hair) in the centre with the flower on her sweater.  She often wore pearls (you can see them) and a hat.  My Mum took the photo.  We would often go for a drive to a favourite picnic park about an hour (in those days) away and have a picnic.  The photo is old and grainy so it's difficult to see what food we brought along.  I see lots of pop bottles.  :)  I'm sure it was a big effort on my mother's part to prepare and pack the picnic lunch and get 3 little kids ready on a hot summer day.  And I'm sure we were probably a bit cranky and fought in the back seat of the hot car ~ with no air conditioning or seat belts or carseats!!  I remember my brother and I arguing over who could lay up in the back window as we drove along the highway any time we went for a drive!!  Did you ever do that?  Was that safe??  Oh my!  How we ever survived childhood back then I don't know.  

I'm sure there were many happy idyllic days spent at the farmhouse away from the hot city back then.  Just as today when folk have cottages or camps by the seashore or a lake or river.  Or even a trailer parked at a campground for a season.  I guess most of us like to have a get away place if possible.  I'm glad we live in the country not too far from the city as we can enjoy the fresh country air without leaving home.  Do you have a place to escape to in the hot summer months?  Do you still enjoy taking a picnic lunch on a drive to a special spot?  Summer is here and I hope we all can do something special like that even if it's just to a local park in the neighbourhood.   It's time to take a break and enjoy the beautiful season that is upon us.  

The summer days are here when we can enjoy our decks and porches, our backyards, go for walks down the sidewalk and chat with neighbours sitting on their porches, cool off in a pool or river, relax by a fire pit, catch fire flies in a jar, pick fresh veggies in the garden, go berry picking, take a backroad drive, have a picnic in a park, go to an outdoor concert, watch the kids play ball and soccer, go fishing, get outside and just breathe in the sweet summer air.....
There is so much to pack into this new season.  


I hope you all have a wonderful weekend and welcome summer and all it has to offer.
 Enjoy the weekend!


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