Tuesday, January 27, 2009

feather in the snow

We have a great many blue jays around our place.  They are thriving and vigorous, due to the fact that they dive-bomb the dog food on a regular basis.  They're quite plump, really.  My youngest found this feather in the snow, and I thought I would update my header.  I seem to have a bit of a feather theme going on.

Thank you for everyone's comments on the kitty standoff.  I suppose patience is the key.  Have a great day!

Monday, January 26, 2009

all cats all the time

  Our older, dominant female cat (Daisy) is not enjoying the new kitty quite as much as we are, to put it mildly.  Any tips on helping an older female cat to accept a younger female cat? Anyone?  Anyone?  (halp! iz getting a bit ugly!!)

Friday, January 23, 2009

a corner

This is a shot of a corner of our family room.  I took the photo this way because of the mess of video games and board games on the floor (which are supposed to be stored in the cupboard- but are generally not).  The framed vintage photograph is of a man and his horse and carriage.

Here's a closeup, you can see a bit of glare from the glass.  I love antiques, but I tend to stay away from old photographs.  They usually make me feel as if I am appropriating a bit of someone's history, and the subjects are usually sombre-having one's photograph taken was a serious, rare and probably expensive undertaking.  But this photo spoke to me.  It's of a young(ish) man and his horse and carriage.  Would this have been the equivalent of a young man and his first 'sports car'?  The horse is so strong and healthy looking, and the man so proud.  There's an energy to this photo.  I like it.  The setting is rural,  and quite idyllic (a frame house along a country laneway).  I like to think of this fellow as having a long and purpose-filled life.  Hopefully he wasn't some dissolute gambler or Lothario (I don't think so, he really looks quite proper.  He was probably boring, had a lisp and really sweaty hands!)

...but I digress-have yourselves a wonderful, long, and purpose-filled weekend!!!!

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

the critters in winter

Have I mentioned lately that it's COLD outside?  The 'outdoor' dogs have managed to wheedle themselves into the mudroom by looking pathetic and sad and generally tugging at my heartstrings with their 'sad puppy ' eyes.  The little schemers.


I must say, though, they do seem to enjoy soaking up every last bit of heat.

The cats just generally loll about, and do not even entertain the remotest thought of braving the outdoors.

And when that gets boring, they break into song.  Opera, mostly.

I haven't posted any photos of the horses lately, so here you go.

Just kidding, that's a little bronze Victorian statue.  Quite fetching, no?

Here's Sadie, chowing down.

There's been a lot of chowing down going on around here (by animals and humans alike).  It is patently obvious that I have officially entered the first phase of cabin fever.  You know, the silly phase. This can last quite a while. 

Please send chocolate.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009


It was -20C  this morning.  There is so much snow , so much frost, so much beauty.  And the light,...gorgeous.  But me?  All I could think about was coffee.  Lots and lots of really strong, hot, steaming coffee.  And doughnuts, loaded with sugar.

I am also thinking of the Inauguration, of course.  What an amazing day-I'll be watching (while sipping my hot coffee).   Idealism and hope.  Good for what ails ya.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009


When we bought our farmhouse,  it had not been occupied for thirty years,  and had been without windows for the last ten of those.  Yes, we bought the local abandoned  'haunted house'.  My husband remembers dirtbiking here with his siblings when he was a kid, and sneaking through the rooms.  It was already a broken-down old place then.

Of all the doors in our farmhouse, the only one still hanging was the front door.  All of the other doors had been ripped off their hinges and thrown out the (already broken) windows.  Any slightest bit of hardware, be it decorative or utilitarian, was stripped.  The mantels were gone, as were sliding wooden pocket doors and even the stair railing and baluster (which is sad,as those old railings really give character to a place-and of course, they were all hand-hewn back then).

We managed to salvage and re-use all of the doors- but we had to scout around for the right hardware and knobs.  

We did our best to improvise with our findings, and I think we did pretty well.  All of the doors had keyholes in them.  I guess those were the days when everything was kept under lock and key- we even found a rusted old key when digging out the flower beds.

I don't notice the knobs so much any more, but today I was thinking about how much time and effort I put into finding them.  Details are important, don't you think?

Tuesday, January 13, 2009


If whiteouts, howling winds, and cold weather warnings are your thing.......

Then baby, this is your day.  All that's missing is the sound of the moaning, whistling wind as it drives puffs of wet snow in your face and up your nose.  Just thought you'd like to know what's going on in these parts on this miser.., I mean, uh, .....bracing winter day.  

Monday, January 12, 2009


Even though there's a hazy, beautiful, white sparkling frost coating everything outside, I'm not exactly rushing out with my camera to snap away.  It's starting to get a bit ...old.  Instead,  I thought I'd post a few shots of my living room fireplace.  

On Saturday night, I spent quite a bit of time staring aimlessly at the fire.  A basic amount of reverie is required when you have a fire in your fireplace.  It's a given.  It always makes me feel very connected to the former inhabitants of  this old place.  It's one feature that we use in exactly the same way it was always used: warming purposes and dreaming purposes.  And if you turn the lights off,  the shadows reveal their ghosts.  But only for a split-second, and then you can resume your aimless staring.  I'm certain it's a well-established tradition in this old place, and one I am responsible for keeping up.  And I take my responsibilities very seriously.

Friday, January 9, 2009

snowy weekend

It doesn't matter if they're predicting snow again this weekend.  We'll try to dive in.

and enjoy!  (time to get out the cross-country skis, I think).

Thursday, January 8, 2009


Bitsie, Bootsie, Socks, Cleo, Sweetie,  Abby (the tabby), Tiggie,.....none of the names 'stuck'.  Except for Kitty.  And variations on that theme (Kitty bitty, Kitty Bo Bitty, Kit-you get the picture).

It has been a month now, since this gentle, playful, sweet little Miss showed up on our doorstep.

(Almost) everyone is quite smitten with the newcomer.  The senior cat (Daisy) is the only one who can resist her charms.  

The rest of us?  Goners.

Tuesday, January 6, 2009


You can't really know a river properly over a short time.  It takes years, maybe even decades, for it to reveal all of its faces, and all of its possibilities.

Because of our recent snowfalls and thaws and freezings, the river, which is across the road from us, and which we are lucky enough to drive along daily,  got very very high, and overflowed onto the river flats.  It really asserted itself this winter.  It was wonderful to see. 

There were even people skating on the river flats.  You see, our river isn't a virile rushing water source.  It's lazy.  It laughs, and purrs, and gurgles.  So it was lovely to see it expand its boundaries....

That's the beauty of a river, the fact that it's always changing, flowing, moving.  And at the risk of sounding overly fruit loopy, it's really a metaphor for life itself.   And the passage of time.   It's beautiful.  (And you also get to see amazing wildlife- you can spot geese, ducks, swans, herons, even a bald eagle nesting).  So you see what I mean when I say there's never a dull moment here in the country.  Especially if you have a river.

Sunday, January 4, 2009

not necessarily wiser

The time right after Christmas includes my wedding anniversary and my birthday which I share with my son.  This year we turned 14 and 43.  Ouch.  Although, I must say, 43 isn't that much worse a number than 42, so I can deal.  It's a lot of celebrating, though, and we generally 'opt out'  of a big shindig.  My son and I, we're anti-birthday.  It's just too close to Christmas, and we enjoy being grouchy about it.

Here we are, about to blow out the candles on our cake, which my daughter kindly baked.  (I'm posting this picture, if only to prove that I don't have two noses and three arms, although a third arm could come in handy around here on certain days).

I had to suspend the grouch routine in order to laugh at my son.  He has a great sense of humour.   I must say, though, I'm glad all the celebrating is over, and I'm looking forward to getting back to a (somewhat) peaceful routine.

Birthdays.  Harrumph.