Friday, March 27, 2009


The best thing that happened today was that I was outside when a flock of 52 Canada Geese flew overhead on their migration north. Before I could see them I heard them calling "spring's here, spring's here!" before they flew over the hill into sight. We are very lucky to be directly in their flight path as they head up the Bay of Fundy. There's something so wild and timeless and predictable about the return of the geese, I feel the same excitement each year as they pass over heralding the seasons change, and the same sadness each fall as they fly over the house hurrying south before the snows. It always amazes me how such heavy birds can stay aloft for so long , for so many miles.
In contrast I watched a bald eagle in Saint John today, effortlessly circling the sky with nary a wing flap, masterfully riding the air currents. A beautiful sighting in an ugly city. A blessed day indeed.

Tuesday, March 17, 2009


The sap is dripping steadily from our little clump of maples so spring for me is officially here. These are the only maples on the whole 8 acres and they are not that old so in order not to stress them too much I only tap every other year. What a pleasant sound, the rhythmic plink plink into the buckets. Tomorrow I'll gather in the sap and it will simmer slowly on the wood stove with each days' accumulation added, till at seasons end in a couple of weeks or so, there will be a couple of small bottles of dark amber syrup for our crepes and pancakes. We dont get much with only 4 taps and a boil down ratio of 40 to 1, but its a welcome taste of spring to chase the winter blahs.

I look forward to mud season, the snow is melting ever so slowly and puttering chores are beginning to present themselves...turning over the sun warmed soil in the greenhouse, still too cold at night to seed anything yet...

messing about in the pond...

I duct taped a colander to a broomstick handle and spent a happy hour scooping algae and old leaves off the pond bottom, must get some snails to eat the algae..

Theres still 2-3 feet of snow in the raspberries and blackberries so pruning them will have to wait another couple of weeks. I feel like Im coming out of hibernation like the bears.
Looking for outdoor things to do while the inside work piles up.

Thursday, March 12, 2009

An odds and ends week

This has been a week of finishing up lingering projects. The painting of Avery and Stormy posted weeks ago has been bugging me ever since, and an "Aha!" moment occurred when I realised the yellowy green grass colors didnt tie in at all to the background so I applied a thin wash of greeny blue and now it seems to be more agreeable with the spruce trees. Stormys muzzle needed some lenghtening , a tweak here and there...and now its finally done...I think.

I always found crossing off finished items from the to do list to be very satisfying. This week the bathroom grout has been sealed, caulking done, carpet-to-tile wood threshold made, and the income tax papers dropped off. But the biggest procrastination of citizenship papers are ready to mail.

Here we are, a happy little band of immigrants in 1957, happy that we weren't seasick and throwing up for the first time in 11 days...
as we approached Newfoundland, first stop on our way to a new life in Nova Scotia. What is it with the Brits and their obligatory neckties? We're on an immigrant ship for heavens sake.
So Ive been a landed immigrant for 52 years and it was a great shock after 9/11 to find out I would now have to have a $50. plastic card to prove it! Enormous amounts of paperwork later...(what record of landing??) I got my card only to find out they would charge me another $50 or more every 5 years to renew it. The final straw was driving over the Maine border this February to be told, you have a British passport so you have to pay $6.00. I was about to hit the roof with righteous indignation when wise hubby shushed me , muttering in my ear about the folly of arguing with american border guards. So feeling thoroughly discriminated against, this week I downloaded the citizenship papers for the final insult, $200.00 after being a contributing Canadian taxpayer all my adult life!! Well, at least I'll be able to vote legally, (somebody should have told me that years ago I guess) and being over 55 I dont have to write the test. Yay !

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Finished the bathroom reno...

At last! I was beginning to think this little room was to be my life's work...sometimes a project just keeps evolving and consuming time as new ideas present themselves (usually in the middle of the night) Jimmy caught me multitasking here, having my first morning cuppa, eating my breakfast apple, stirring the paint, and about to second coat the the bathroom mirror frame.

I had some lovely tile colors that reminded me of the sea and sand and the foam that floats about where they meet, so after some hammering and jigsaw puzzle work, (a LOT of jigsaw puzzle work) a free form sort of flow emerged...

The focal point , the boat tile, was a piece of wall art that I soaked in the bathtub to loosen and get rid of the glued on masonite backing. My original idea was to set it into the floor but as this is the B&B bathroom and some of our guests are heavyweights, it seemed a safer proposition to stick it vertically on the tub.
Warning to the un-initiated: Do not attempt a tiling project without a really good set of knee pads, especially if you are past 55 ! This took more than a week of knee work.

This is the bathroom mirror reflecting the shower curtain opposite. Some leftover bits of tile represent breaking waves around the electrical plates, more tile and shells on the mirror base to remind guests of the lovely beach nearby that awaits their discovery. Tomorrow the pedestal sink goes in, and the toilet, and I can at last say "finished".