Friday, October 30, 2009

Jada Is Not Earning Her Keep!

Doesn't Jada know it's her job to keep the mice off the deck!!
(this mouse was climbing the sliding screen door and was stuck between it and the patio door)

For crying out loud!!

Any one have a cat I can borrow for a while?

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Australian Heritage Pumpkins

So I wanted to utilize my greenhouse for as many months as possible. . .

You know, to make me feel less guilty about the amount of money we spent on it.

I decided to try pumpkins.

I could, of course, have chosen a regular pumpkin, but what fun would that be? I choose to grow an Australian heritage pumpkin instead.

It was an awfully pretty pumpkin with it's unusual bluish grey skin and I'm always up for a growing challenge!
I ran into some problems.

There wasn't a whole lot of pollination going on and I couldn't figure out if the bees were having a problem finding the flowers in the greenhouse or if there was some other reason I had only one tiny pumpkin on the whole vine. (considering how few mini pumpkins I got off of the rampant vines in the front garden I'm thinking other factors were in play.)

Fall came and the vine died back. Truth be told, the vines came close to death several times through the summer as I found it very difficult to keep it watered even with the enormous pot I used.
I brought my lone pumpkin inside and used him as decoration for fall.
He began to get soft rather quickly and as I wanted to save the seed for next year, I decided to cut him open.

Easier said than done!!

I nearly killed myself trying to cut this guy open! I have never cut into anything that hard.

Now, I had only intended to harvest the seeds as I am not at all fond of pumpkin pie, or any pumpkin dish.

This guy was tricky though.

As he split in two, the most refreshing aroma of cucumber wafted through the kitchen.
I had second thoughts about putting most of him in the compost bin.

Henry said if I made any thing pumpkinny I would have to eat it myself.

Hmmm. . .

I decided to work on saving the seeds while I thought things over.

The plan is to give seeds from this pumpkin to a few friends in my neighbourhood next spring.
Plants planted from saved seed begin to adapt to local growing conditions over time and I hope that by spreading it around the neighbourhood a bit we will see even more of that.

We shall see. . .

Staring at this beautiful pumpkin I had a brilliant idea!

Who else to give it to but my good friend Ev, who spent time living in Australia with her husband and oldest daughter?!

Look what this pumpkin came back to me as!
Pumpkin risotto!

Complete with chopped nuts on top. Ev seems to have a thing for topping things with nuts.

Shudder. Sorry Ev, but there is nothing worse than enjoying a soft creamy food only to be ambushed by crunchy nuts!

I hate to say it. . . but I scraped the nuts off.

I did however, add Parmesan cheese and noticed how lovely the chunks of pumpkin looked nestled next to the creamy rice.

But the question is. . .

Did it taste good??
Did it ever!
We'll have to grow more again next year Ev!

Wednesday, October 28, 2009


With one more kid moved out and then, surprise!, two more moving back home, it was time for some serious reorganizing.

I had turned one bedroom into a store room and it was such a treat to be able to get food from my pantry shelves without whacking my head on the low ceiling of the cold room.

Alas, that room is going to be needed again, so I have had to do some reorganizing.

Today I decided to clean out my bedroom closet.

Organizing is not my thing.

I love and need things to be organized, but the getting there. . .


I was so cranky when I got home from work and saw this. . .

I chucked everything off the bed, into the closet, and decided to try again tomorrow.

Wish me luck. . .!!!

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Adventures In Bus Driving

Overheard while driving to school this morning:

Kindergarten boy (one of 11(!!) on my bus this year) to Minister/Pastor father of his little classmate about to board the bus.

"Hey. . ."

"Hey. . . "

"You work in the church, right?"

"Minster dad replies with a smile " You're right, I do work in the church!"

A (Very) Belated Birthday To Morgan

Monday, October 26, 2009

A Walk In The Woods

I met my friend Evelyn's mom and dad this morning while out walking Jada.
They are very nice people and Ev's mom told me that she knows me very well.

Because, of course, she reads my blog regularly!

I though that was kind of neat and felt it was high time I began blogging again.

While going through my pictures looking for something to post about, I realized that I have plenty of material and so haven't got any excuses at all not to post!

A while back I had to go to the north end of the city to Done Rite Floors. Morgan was cleaning out the warehouse and he thought there might be some leftover tile that we could use in the kitchen.

I decided to make the outing a bit of an adventure and brought along Jada and some homemade cinnamon bread for a snack.

After picking out some awesome tile, Jada and I headed out to Ada Boulevard, a beautiful historic neighbourhood that runs along the river valley.

When we lived on that end of town I would walk along that road and drool over the old, huge houses and soak in the gorgeous view of the ravine.

I obviously must be in much better shape than I used to be because I soon found myself at the end of the road and nowhere near ready to stop walking.

Imagine my surprise when I realized that there was a path running parallel to the the road down into the ravine.

Jada and I couldn't resist!

We so thoroughly enjoyed feeling as though we were the only two people for miles. (Ahem. . . One people and one dog of course. I do know she is a dog!)

When we got to the end of the path I discovered we had come out on the Highlands golf course, so we beat a hasty retreat before either one of us got hit in the head with a golf ball. (Hey, it happens. Just ask Henry!)

All in all, it was a lovely adventure.

Monday, October 5, 2009

Fall Harvest and a Hiatus

As a few of you may have realized, I've been on a hiatus for the last month or so.

My cousin Chandra wondered if my sister Tamara and I were hiding out together.
I wish that had been the case, as then I could have been eating around the world with her!

Unfortunately, the real reason is a lot less glamorous.
For the last few months my hormones have decided to dance the hokey pokey pretty much non stop.
This has left me anxious, tired, and out of sorts.

Not exactly the best frame of mind for blogging!

But Fall has arrived and, sadly, is scheduled to leave again tomorrow afternoon, as a huge windstorm bringing cold temperatures and the likelihood of snow, is set to blow in, which had me scrambling to get some harvesting done in the garden today.
Luckily for me Jesse slept in and missed the bus so I was able to put him to work.

He spent quite some time chopping up all my sunflowers so I would be able to compost them.
A few of them even survived the frost!

I harvested potatoes, which was pretty exciting, although they do have a bit of scab which was disappointing.

I had planted two mini pumpkin vines in the front garden and as you can see they went a little crazy.
Frost hit them a few times in the last few nights so it was time to pull them out.

All those leaves and this is my harvest. . .
Hmmmm. . .

Maybe not the best use of a small space!

I'll have to try something else next year.

Happy fall everyone.
© A Life of Whimsey