Monday, July 9, 2018

Summer Living



Hi Everyone,

How is everything in your neck of the woods? I've been trying to get back into my painting and drawing lately, I did this watercolour on the porch yesterday in the sweltering heat. I love having my easel on the porch with me! :)


Here's a quick 1 minute video I took this morning with the dogs in the woods. Just an update on what's happening here with me. :) Thanks for all of your wonderful comments the last few posts! They make me happy! :) 

Wednesday, June 27, 2018

Crunchy!


Hi Everyone :)

The theme for today's Scribble Picnic is "Crunchy"...now what could be crunchier than a nice crisp fresh carrot? Bugs thinks it's the bee's knees!! :) (Follow the link for more crunchy scribbles!)


Have I mentioned this before?? According to the creators of Bugs Bunny (Chuck Jones, Friz Freleng and Bob Clampett), Clark Gable eating a carrot in the movie "It Happened One Night" inspired them to give Bugs Bunny that carrot crunching characteristic. :)


And this is my watercolour version of "Crunchy" - it's the forest floor. Have you ever walked in a pine forest on a warm and dry day? All you can hear is "crunch crunch crunch" from the pine needles underfoot.


You can't sneak up on anyone in a pine forest! :) The dogs hear even a chipmunk running around from tree to tree.


Speaking of crunchy, this week I made my Cinnamon Crunch Knots. They taste just like donuts, we love them!


The crunchiest part of these delicious treats is the cinnamon sugar mix that melts off the pastry during the baking and hardens into a sweet, burnt and crunchy treat! :)


Another crunchy treat is a BLT on homemade toasted bread with fries! I love my "diner" baskets! :) We've been having dinner on the screened-in veranda and it's so nice and relaxing!


I wanted to show you an update of the container garden - mainly the potatoes. We had about 3 days of rain, then 3 days of lots of sunshine and everything has "jungled-up"!! The "tater tires" are booming! The two containers in front have carrots starting to come up too. This container garden has been a lot of fun this year!


Besides lots of porch time, mothering the container garden and keeping an eye on our robin's nest in the lilac tree...life is very good here in the mountains. We had a few veterinary challenges lately...Oscar the cat kept scratching at his ears to the point where they were in need of medication and the dreaded cone...Poor him...but as I type, he's all better and free again. :)


In February we had to rush to the vet because Charlie's face swelled up like this, we thought maybe it was a spider bite...I took this photo in February...but last weekend, the SAME THING happened, I woke up to her face triple the size it should be...because it was a holiday weekend (of course right?), all the vets were closed, so I gave her doses of Benadryl for 24 hours and she's just fine now thankfully. So, we were thinking, two pets got sick in the last week...that must be it...Nope...


Marlene hurt her front leg. She was running around in a wood pile and started limping a few days ago. I had to stop the dog walks each morning, just to let her heal. She seemed better today too so I took a chance and walked the dogs in the woods, I can happily say she's fine too. We don't really know how old she is...could be anywhere from 9 years old to 13 years old...we've noticed she's been having trouble with her hind legs too so we are starting Glucosamine for her...and for hound dog Jack since he's 12 years old now.  These shelter pets are so endearing and we would do anything for them. :)

July is just around the corner! Time is flying way too fast!

Wednesday, June 20, 2018

Plump! Summer In The Laurentians :)


Hi Everyone :)

The theme for the Scribble Picnic this week is "Plump"! :) Any Looney Tunes fan will remember Porky the Pig's constant giggling in the classic Robin Hood Daffy as he plays Friar Tuck. :) 


Here is a two minute slice of that funny cartoon.


Speaking of plump, I've been making lots of desserts lately! Hmmm...I'm guessing I'll need to be walking the dogs a little longer each morning to work off this Pineapple Upside Down Cake!


Besides lots of desserts, we've been enjoying the abundance of lettuce that is thriving in the garden! But you know me, there must be cheese...I tried a "cheesy bread" that seems to be very trendy lately. I made some garlic butter, spread it on my No Knead Bread, added some shredded Mozzarella, Cheddar and Parm and broiled it, then added some home grown parsley. Very nice with a Cesar salad! :)


Some great news! We found another robin's nest in the lilac tree! Alex had to really stretch up with his phone to get a photo of the nest!


We were just checking out the container garden when we heard a bird flying away and we saw the nest just above us.


It's pretty close to the house so we can keep a good eye on it. We tried to save a baby robin a few weeks back that fell out of the nest but the poor little sweetie didn't make it. We rescued him, Alex climbed the tree to recover the nest, we put the nest in another tree and were so pleased to see the parents found him again and fed him worms. But...nature can be cruel sometimes. We're still dealing with that little loss, we really got attached to the little fella. :( 

We are hoping this one will make it! I kind of feel like the robin nested this close to our home because she knew we'd help her watch over her little one. :) I'll keep you posted, send some prayers up north for this little bird!! :) You can bet we'll be guarding the nest just as much as its parents!!!


We've had such a busy week...we found a GREAT deal on my favourite cookbooks. A lady was selling these 24 books for $35, they were used but in excellent condition! The downside is that she lived in Montreal, which is a 2-hour drive away. Alex and I promised each other we'd never set foot in Montreal ever again. With our upbringings, that was a healthy decision, best not to open old wounds right? But...we felt it was worth the drive because we've been slowly accumulating these cookbooks online the last few years at a cost of about $15 each. Including the gas expense, these came out to just about $2.25 each.  Good deal! :)


We were going to go for ice cream but opted to revisit one of our old favourite pizza joints instead! :) We really don't go out often, we're trying to save money, but once in a while, it's a real treat!


But as usual, the stress of driving back to our home town, the stress of the traffic, our nerves...we both felt under the weather for a few days after and spent most of our time in bed watching movies and eating ice cream! :) We have both realized that if we never have to go to a city ever again, it'll be a happy day for us. Being home in the mountains feel right. :)

I can't believe tomorrow is the Summer Solstice already....time goes by way too fast for me, especially in the warmer weather. I hope you're all doing well!! :) I suppose we'll all catch up this winter lol! ;)

Wednesday, June 13, 2018

Three Colour Challenge - Spring Garden - Comfort Food!!


Trees in Season. :) 

Hi Everyone! Today for Michael's Scribble Picnic, the theme is a Three Colour Challenge. I decided to aggravate challenge myself for this watercolour idea I had. 


I pulled out my roll of masking tape, sketched some trees on the tape and Exacto'd out the shape. I think I pulled several muscles in my hands and arms doing this lol... It wasn't as easy as I thought it would be, the tape kept tearing and curling, but I managed to get it on the watercolour paper to do my painting! Might I say...never again? :) Well, maybe but not with such detailed objects!


Aah...Pepé Le Pew...a romantic little stinker with love on the brain! This is my three colour piece for my drawing contribution! :) If you'd like to see other people's lovely art, follow the link above!


Porch life. The porch is tiny but usually all 6 pets can fit while I'm sitting on my love seat! One dog and one cat is missing from this photo, but they were just inside on the rug by the door, keeping cool. We had about 4 days of hot and humid summery weather at the beginning of June, then spring decided to arrive with hot days and cooler nights. That works for me since Alex and I have decided to try to live without air conditioning this summer. I may regret that in July!


The spring garden...soon to be summer garden...is growing nicely! I love how the world turned green almost overnight!


The Jungle. Every year we have a plethora (I love using that word!) of ferns that pop up and give us a nice privacy hedge of sorts. It's really nice. :) And the potatoes are really doing well in the tires! I've "hilled" them to the brim with soil so now I just have to wait until they push through the soil, flower and can be harvested!


Look at that garlic! :) As soon as the scapes start to curl, we are harvesting them for soups and dips. That should make the garlic bulbs grow even bigger so I've read! Thanks Mama Pea for your garlicky guidance! :)


I've been growing all of my lettuce inside but this is the first pot that's nearly ready to harvest that I planted in late May. We've been eating a lot of salad lately, it's wonderful!


But...woman can NOT live on salad alone...a poutine is needed at times! :) I know, where are the fries you ask? Under that MOUND of Mozzarella and gravy!!! :) I found a great recipe for a Poutine Gravy that I tweaked just a little bit. I always serve the poutines in these aluminum containers to make them look "diner-authentic"...makes it more delicious! :)


I made a Peach Pie the other day and it turned out very well! With my homemade vanilla ice cream and some Cheddar cheese melted on top...a triumph! :) (Here is the recipe for my Strawberry Ice Cream...minus the strawberries and you have a nice vanilla ice cream!)

I hope everyone is enjoying life! My posts will be here and there while I enjoy every moment I can of our very short spring and summer! I'm going to spend some time this week catching up with my Blogger friends too! :) Thanks for stopping by!

Wednesday, June 6, 2018

💔 It's The Beating Of That Hideous Heart!!! 💔


Hi Everyone :)

I'm trickling back to the internet today! It's raining today, so porch life is out, I thought I'd catch up with my Blogging friends and join in on Michael's Scribble Picnic's theme today: Classic! (follow the link to see other wonderful scribbles!). Firstly, as I always try to include a Looney drawing, I thought about how Bugs Bunny took on the role of Leopold Stokowski. Bugs conducts a "classic" while he gets revenge on the tenor who annoyed him earlier in the day. 


Here's a 2:45 clip from that short. I loved this one! :) Bugs is such a stinker! :)


When I think of the word classic, I automatically think of the Classic Tales of Horror! Ooooh! Shiver!!! :) One of my favourite author/poet's is Edgar Allan Poe. This is my watercolour version of The Tell Tale Heart where a mad man murders an older man...only to admit to his crime as he begins to hear the old man's heart beating incessantly beneath the floor boards. You NEVER get away with murder...maybe the police won't figure you out, but your conscience will...well, unless you are a sociopath...but let's leave that for another discussion! :)


Actually, the Simpsons did a funny version of this horror!


Oh do you like Christopher Lee? I loved that man! If you do, take the next 15 minutes, turn off the lights and listen to him reading The Tell Tale Heart! You'll sleep with ONE eye open that's for sure! ;)


I'll just give you an update on what's been happening here at the cottage. :) The potatoes are GROWING AND GROWING!!! All of my 16 containers are producing from 4-8 plants each! Yippee! It'll be a spuddy winter that's for sure! :) All of the other produce is doing fine, except sadly my strawberries. :( Only 2 of the 12 roots I planted are doing okay. Oh well...it was an experiment!


In the kitchen it's been summery fare. I made our first Cobb Salad of the season! Homemade Mozzarella makes it that much tastier. :) I am SO grateful for home grown produce right now! At the moment, all I can harvest is lettuce and herbs but already that brings me so much joy...I can't wait until I can pick some of my own tomatoes too!


I made a Nectarine Dutch Baby one evening when the fruit was nice and ripe.


We've been eating sandwiches for dinner on the more humid days. BLT's with cheese and some tater salad hit the spot! :)


Oh I woke up to this the other morning! Poor little fella...I was glad to see him doing okay. I have to remember to turn the dog's water dish upside down at night. He couldn't get out! I helped him out and he's doing fine. :)

Marlene, Proud Jack and Charlie - Enjoying Their Mountain Hikes!

Besides enjoying food and the garden, I've been walking the dogs on the mountain twice a day now! Exercise and Nature and my little furry doggies...what's not to like? :) And btw...a pox on that horrid vet who arrogantly INSISTED that Jack would be "disabled" for life after the mystery accident/illness in March...he's just fine, limber, active and excited about life! Could she admit she was wrong? No idea since a week after we saw her, she didn't work at that vet hospital anymore...interesting... (always question the diagnosis and listen to your gut!!!) :)

Oscar, Leo and Dana - Safe On The Porch and MESMERIZED by the Bird Feeder!

After getting the container garden up and at 'em...I am now enjoying the porch life. I hope you're all having a fantastic end of spring and beginning of summer! 

Saturday, May 26, 2018

A Tour of the Container Garden


It may not seem like much compared to you wonderful homesteaders and gardeners out there, but this is what has kept me in the dirt for the last few weeks!! This is a panoramic view of my backyard and container garden, please feel free to click on it for a better look! We will be living here one more year and I think this will be my last garden until we get settled! Sad...but oh my gosh, I can't wait to get settled!!! :)


Strawberry Central: 12 strawberry plants that I bought as roots in April. So far five of the twelve look happy and are growing leaves...I hope the other seven follow suit!


Lettuce Land: I planted four rows, two Romaines, one Iceberg and one leaf lettuce. I saw a very pushy finch poking at the dirt this morning so some more chicken wire is in order!


Herb Haven: Just the beginning! I'll be adding to my herb garden as the weather gets hotter. :)


Sugar Pumpkin Patch: Fingers crossed that I'll have a nice harvest of sugar pumpkins for pies. See the old red barbecue on the left? I'm using it as a planter, trying to grow some ornamental grass called Blue Fescue. I've been trying to grow that stuff since 2013...I may give up if it doesn't work this summer!


Potato Plaza: My old winter tires with some garbage bins, Dianna's potato bag that she sent me last year (thanks Dianna!) and two old plastic bins for potatoes.


Carving Pumpkin Patch: Behind Potato Plaza is my pumpkin patch for carving pumpkins. I'm a Halloweenie so I MUST have pumpkins to carve! Last year I managed three big ones despite the crappy summer, this season I hope to have more!


Garlic Grove: Last autumn I planted garlic bulbs for the first time and look at these babies! I can't wait to harvest them!


Onionopolis: Another new crop for me, Utah Sweet Onions, they are supposed to grow up to a pound each and I've read they work in containers, so we will see. I have a container of Green Onions there as well. I want to plant more Green Onions...so maybe I'll have a Green-Onionopolis in the near future! :)


Tomato County: Mostly regular tomatoes, two containers of Cherry Tomatoes.


Potato Junction with Chive and Carrot Development: I love these names lol...now we cross the border over to Potato Junction! These are the tires I acquired at my wonderful mechanic's shop. He had piles and told me to take what I wanted. I planted two containers of carrots and one container of chives with my fingers crossed because I somehow have a chive-growing-block lately! Near the fence I've planted some wild flowers in those three pots.


Bean Town: Three containers of Yellow Beans, three containers of Green Beans...and I snuck in some Brussels Sprouts on the end of Bean Town. :)


I brought out my Meyer Lemon tree for the season and she looks darn healthy! I can't wait to get some lemons this year!


I've got some more Buttercrunch lettuce growing.


I decided to keep an indoor window garden going all summer. The top shelf is herbs-a-plenty! The middle shelf is Buttercrunch lettuce. The lower shelf is more lettuce and some chives and mint I bought at the nursery last week.


The Flower Follies: Alex found this shelf and the old oar in the basement when we moved here. I finally got this all installed as my gardening station! Joyce's beautiful hummingbird mirror chain graces the follies (thank you Joyce!), along with my wind chimes, my garden gnome Sir Dusty Buttons who watches over the garden, my cardinal and a few pots of flowers...hope to show you them in bloom soon!


As is tradition, Alex picks me wildflowers very often during the nice weather! Here are some lovely little flowers that made my day. :)