Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Jada's Pooped

After spending a few days at the cabin with her friend (and Nemesis) Murphy, Jada was pooped!

She still heard me coming though and asked for a belly rub.

Energy spent, she went back to sleep.

Monday, March 30, 2009

The Last Day of Tamara's Visit

I'm finally going to post about Tamara's last day here.
I wish I hadn't already read her post because, really, she said it all!
However, a promise is a promise so, here it goes. . .

On Tamara and the Big Guy's last day we had the chance to spend a couple of hours together.

Of course we had to go to a garden center!
I chose Holes as it is the best garden center in the area.
Tamara couldn't see what made it so special, as in her eyes it was rather small and lacking in hard goods.

I had to think about that for a while and I realized that Holes to me, is all about the plants. This is the place you go for something different, for information, inspiration and above all, top quality plant material. They carry everything from annuals to trees. If I buy a rose bush from Holes I can be guaranteed that it will be a big, healthy blooming bush and will out perform any thing else I might buy.

You pay for it mind you, but sometimes it's worth it.

We checked out a few things and Tam enjoyed all the bright colours.

She never stops working though, and at one time during our visit she was on two phones at once!

We stopped for a quick bite to eat at Tim's and then they were on their way.

I'm so thankful that I have the opportunity to visit with my sisters in person at least once a year.
After we all got married and they moved down to the coast in B.C. there were several years that went by without that chance.
Long distance bills were a major expense and we were so thankful for understanding husbands!
Now of course it is the computer age and we can share our lives by blogging.

It's not quite the same though.
I'm going to miss you Tam.

Saturday, March 28, 2009

Spring Break, Spring Cleaning

It's going to be a busy week.
As school is out for spring break in the coming week, I have a week off.
In the dead of winter I often fool myself into thinking I'll be able to do some cleaning up in the garden during spring break.
As most of the garden is still covered in snow that is obviously not going to happen.
So, I've moved on to the next best project.
Spring cleaning.
Mom was going to come help me get started on Monday but I've just gotten the exciting news that my new windows will be going in on Monday and Tuesday!
Whoo Hoo!
It will be great to be able to look out the window on a cold day. (Right now the middle of both the kitchen and living room windows freeze up on cold days.)
It's perfect timing too, warm enough that I won't freeze my pattooty off while the windows are out and cold enough that nothing has come up in the garden under the windows.
I also don't have to worry that all the mess created will make spring cleaning useless.
I'll just wait until Wednesday to start and work in the greenhouse instead.
It'll be a hardship, but somethings just have to be done!

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Getting Ready For Spring or A Trip To The Hairdresser

This is a quick post because, although it is only eight o'clock, I am going straight to bed once I have had my sandwich and tea.

There is nothing like a new hair style and colour to get me in the mood for spring.
Since spring seems to be hiding this year, I thought I would give her a little nudge and visit the hair salon.
My stylist is also a neighbour and 'mom' to Jada's best friend Diesel.

She very kindly agreed to take before and after pictures.

Before. (She told me for a proper before picture I should be frowning and looking depressed!)

After, front view.

After, back view.

I'm ready for spring!
Now if I could only figure out where she's been hiding. . .
Tune in tomorrow for my post on Tamara's visit.

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Sorry Tam!

I promised Tamara that I would blog about our day today.
She thought it would be fun if we both blogged about it at the same time and you would get two different perspectives.
Sorry Tam, but I've spent all evening running around for the boys to get them ready for the band trip tomorrow.
Then of course I have to have them at school at 4:30 in the morning which means that by the time I get back I won't have time to go back to sleep as I normally get up at 5:30 to get ready to drive the bus.
I could have posted in the morning but I have to take Jada for a quick walk before I get my hair cut and coloured.
If I'm lucky I`ll have time to grab a bite to eat before I have to leave for the afternoon bus run.
Bottom line Tam. . .
I might not post about our day until after supper tomorrow.
I am looking forward to reading your post though. . . .

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Having Fun and a New Blog

Well, I'm having fun with my sister Tamara while she's here.

We went out for a fabulous dinner last night at an amazing Italian restaurant where the guys ordered a five course meal.

Henry of course, told me later that while the food was excellent, there wasn't enough of it.

That, after finishing my roasted red pepper soup, a small loaf of bread and one of Tamara's crab cakes on top of his five courses!

I'd love to show you pictures but both Tamara and I forgot our cameras.

Today found us at a very nice hotel where Tamara and the Big Guy presented a seminar for Costco garden center employees along with their daughter and son-in-law.

Great fun was had by all, with a viewing of her training video 'Wet' which you can also see if you follow this link . . . http://thegreenhousediaries.blogspot.com/2009_02_01_archive.html

There were games which involved bingo cards and plastic fireman's hats.

Tamara really knows how to get a crowd going!

I'd love to show you pictures but. . .

Tamara and I forgot our cameras.

Tamara, her daughter and I then headed over the West Edmonton Mall where we met my mom who took us out for lunch, which was greatly appreciated.

I'd love to show you a picture but. . .

Only Tamara had her camera this time!

We then spent a few hours of serious shopping for a maternity wardrobe.

No, no, not for me!

My sweet niece is expecting later this year, so we took the opportunity to search 'The Largest Mall In The World' for some pretty outfits.

I finally called it quits and headed home for a long nap. . .

My sister has amazing stamina! There is no way I can keep up with her.

And now for something different.

When I began this blog last year I had intended it to be about gardening only. As some of you may have noticed, that was not the case.

Renovations and the demise of my little portable greenhouse contributed to a less than stellar gardening season for me.

Well that has changed!

I have a new, larger, more permanent greenhouse and dreams of starting up a community garden in our neighbourhood.

My friend Ev and I have been talking about how we can go about getting food back into our urban area.

I would like to find away to plant fruit trees and bushes into the landscape that could then be harvested by anyone who wanted it.

When times get tough, if you live outside the city you often have the opportunity to grow your own food to help stretch the budget and feed your family healthy food.

The often close quarters of city living make this much more difficult and we hope to find a way to improve that.

So. . .

Without further ado, I give you my new gardening only blog, The Potting Shed, which can be found at http://rosa-pottingshed.blogspot.com/.

My good friend and organic veggie grower, Jurrina, has consented to write weekly posts on veggie gardening and preserving the harvest.

She has just written her first post so head on over and tell us what you think.

If there is any particular garden topic you would like covered just let me know and I'll see what I can do!

For now. . .

I've just looked at the time and if I don't wrap this up right now, my plan to get to bed early will have failed and I won't be able to keep up with Tamara tommorow.

Monday, March 23, 2009

A Very Long Break. . . .

Well, I just realized that I have taken a much longer blogging break then I had intended!

Between kid's activities, church events and a bus safety refresher course that took the last two Saturday's, I haven't had a lot of free time lately.
Add in a case of the winter blues, (yes it is still winter here) and a cranky family (myself included) and blogging fell to the bottom of my list.
Today the sun is shining, causing the new snowfall to glitter in the prettiest way.
Things are definitely looking up.
Jesse's basketball team won silver at the provincial competition this past weekend.
I won one of CurtissAnn's book's and am eagerly looking forward to settling in for a good read once it arrives.
I had a change to start seeds in the greenhouse and they are popping up like crazy.
Ev and I went out for a delicious lunch last week,

and. . .

Tamara and the big guy are going to be here later today.
Whooo Hoo!
A chance to visit with my sister.
Now if only Lisa was able to come out for a few days sometime soon . . .

Life is good.
Happy Monday!

Monday, March 16, 2009

Proud Mama

Jesse's school band is taking a trip to British Columbia for a mass band concert in a few weeks.
They had a preview night tonight so that we would be able to hear our kids perform.

Jesse is singing a solo.
This is the first time he has sung in front of a crowd.

Yes, there were tears in my eyes!
He , while fairly happy with his performance, assures me that it will be better next time! Hopefully he will be over his cold by then. . .


Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Pantry Problems

I had planned to have spaghetti for dinner tonight.
While opening the jar of spaghetti sauce, I noticed the expiry date.
September 2008.
For crying out loud!
Last week I was making Hawaiian pizza for dinner and while opening the can of pineapple chunks I noticed that expiry date.
August 2007!!!
I think I had better work on rotating the stock in my pantry. . .

Sunday, March 8, 2009

Quiet Sundays

Saturday, March 7, 2009

Snow in March

Some of us enjoy March snow storms!

Check out Jada's video. . .

Sunday, March 1, 2009

Taking A Break

I'm taking a bit of a break from blogging for the next two weeks.
As a matter of fact, I'm taking a bit of a break from the computer as well!

I've been researching different aspects of sustainable living recently and have come across many exciting ideas that can allow you to become more self sufficient, even in a big city.

My mind has been whirling, trying to figure out how I can put some of these ideas to work in our home. (and in our neighbourhood.)
I've started with the obvious ones, like turning down the furnace, keeping the lights off whenever possible ( I had already switched to compact fluorescent), recycling and so on.
I've also been working hard in the kitchen trying to cook and bake our meals and snacks from scratch, something I did when the kids were small, but which became more difficult as I began to drive full time and started spending a lot of time volunteering.
I'm also working out how to add more room for food gardening in my small space this year, and making plans for preserving the harvest come fall.

What does all this have to do with taking a break from blogging or the computer?

Well, I don't know about you, but I'm finding that the computer is eating up more and more time in my day.
I have to check my e-mails first thing in the morning.
After I walk Jada, I spend time visiting everyone on my favorites list.
Of course, off and on all day I check back to see if there is any mail, or if anyone has posted anything new.
Then it's time to work on my own blog, which generally means some time spent editing pictures and so on, first.
Before you know it, the day is over and large blocks of time were just frittered away.

So. . .

I have come up with a plan.

The computer will stay off all day and won't go on until after the supper dishes are finished.
I will take a quick peek at my e-mails, drop into a few blogs, do any research I might need and then turn off the computer.

It's a radical notion I know but. . .

I want to live life fully and make deliberate choices about how and why I do things.
I want to slow down and take joy in the small things.
I want to just be.

The computer's going off.
The only news I'm going to watch is the local news.
As a matter of fact, for the most part the T.V. will be off as well (for me at least!)

I'll check back with you in two weeks and let you know how things have been going.
If anything exciting or interesting comes up before then I may 'cheat' a bit and drop in to share it with you.

Happy March to you all!

© A Life of Whimsey