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Archive for September, 2012

The Colours are Coming!

The calendar on my wall and the view out my window are both telling me that fall is here.  I took the dogs for a walk this afternoon and I was struck by the contrast from our walks in the spring.  Remember this….

 

Green, green, everywhere…the dogs loved running through the cool, moist, grass.  It was very different today, not that the dogs seemed to notice.

 

Odin flew through the tall, dry grass with as much joy and abandon as usual.

 

Emma ran and explored too, except when she paused to look over her shoulder to see if Odin was about to bowl her over.

The wind no longer whispers in the trees…now it makes the leaves rattle. The sky is as blue as ever, even though the trees are slowly turning yellow, orange and…

 

red.

 

The roses have long finished blooming, but the rose hips are just as lovely.

 

The leaves are falling on the path, and it won’t be long before it is completely covered, and the only sound when I walk will be crunch, crunch, crunch.

 

There are still parts of the path that are holding on to the green of summer, and the warm weather makes it easy to pretend that fall isn’t here just yet.

 

 

The colours are coming though, and we all know what will follow them.

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Got Zucchini?

Have you been asked “Would you like some zucchini?”   Zucchini is one crop that always seems to be abundant. Most gardeners have more than they need and are always trying to find someone to take some off their hands.  I used to be one of those gardeners…but this year I am on the receiving end.  I never get too much zucchini and I’ll tell you why.

My big sister Mary has given me many things over the years, but one thing I am so grateful for is her recipe for Zucchini Soup. I never turn down the offer of zucchini anymore…I know what to do with them.

This year it was my friend Joy who asked the question…and I replied, yes please! It was a beauty and I had a plan….

 

The first step was to saute 2 tablespoons of butter, 1 large chopped onion, 1 large chopped apple and 1.5 teaspoons of curry powder.

 

Mmmmm…the aroma filled the kitchen and made my mouth water.  Then I added 1 quart of chicken broth, .25 cup of uncooked rice and 3 cups of grated zucchini.  Salt and pepper to taste, and cook uncovered on low heat for 45 minutes.

 

 

Once it is cooked, let it cool a little bit, then puree the soup in a blender until nice and smooth.

 

The green flecks of the zucchini look quite pretty.  Add 1.5 cups of milk, top with some grated parmesan cheese and enjoy!

 

Delicious, especially with a slice of crusty bread.  This soup freezes really well too…just leave the milk out, and add it when you reheat the soup.  I had a wonderful lunch, and I have several containers frozen for the future. Thanks again big Sister!

So now when someone offers you zucchini, you don’t have to turn them down…you know what to do with it!

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A Good Day’s Work

This time of year seems to bring beautiful sunrises.  This morning was no exception.

 

This time of year also brings  the need for firewood. Today was the day the firewood would go in the pole shed.  Brother Tom had  been busy cutting and splitting, and today we were bringing it home.  The days have been very warm here, so we started early in the morning to avoid the afternoon heat.  If you look close, you can see frost on the grass.  Yes…frost.

 

I was prepared to throw it all in by hand, but I had hardly started when John Deere pulled up and took over the task.

 

It didn’t take long and the truck was loaded.  A short drive across the fields, and into my yard, and the unloading began.  This sure beats doing it by hand.

 

Well there was the first pile…ready to be stacked.  This would have to be done by hand…haven’t found a machine yet that can stack wood.

 

Three dump truck loads and many hours of stacking later and it was done.  A work of art!  It  felt like completing a huge jigsaw puzzle.  Fitting all the pieces together…one was too big, one was too small, switch them around and eventually they all fit.

 

There is no need to join  a gym, or take an exercise class up here. At the end of the day it felt pretty good to stop moving and relax.

Yes Odin…that’s exactly what I feel like too!

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Away From Here

I have been away from here.  Away from my home, my animals, my daily routines. I have always been a home-body.  Someone who likes to stay home.  I struggle every time I have to pack my bags and lock up my home and head out on the road.  I don’t know why…I’m sure other people love their homes as much as I love mine, but they have no problem leaving on vacation or business trips.

I have been away from here…and it has been good.  I saw different landscapes and woke up to a different view.

I stayed with a good friend,  and her young adult son.  He is just embarking on his career, and is passionate and motivated.  Working and studying at the same time, he is disciplined and organized.

I shared food, wine, walks,  laughter, opinions, thoughts, plans, and dreams with  friends.  It was good.

I spent some time with my niece, Sara, and my three-year-old great-niece, Sophie.  Great niece says it all.  So young, so engaged with everything around her, so much to learn, and so much to teach. It was good.

I spent time with a cousin, Helen,  I hadn’t seen for some time.  We caught up on each other’s lives, and it was good.

I drove home today, leisurely, taking time to enjoy the view. I even took the time to stop and take pictures so I could share them with you.

 

It was a warm, sunny, fall day.  The roads were quiet, and the lakes were calm. I felt calm.

 

I stopped and spent time with another niece, Erica, and my six month old great-nephew, Jace.  Is there anything more fun than a happy, healthy baby.  All smiles, and giggles and wiggles.  Then on to Brother Dan’s, and twin two month old great-nephews.  Grayson slept the entire time I was there, but Hunter woke and I had the pleasure of holding him, receiving his smiles, and hearing the contented sounds he made as he drank his bottle. Then it was on my way again, and finally I pulled into my yard.

The animals greeted me, the house welcomed me, and the view was familiar.  Later in the evening I sat on my deck and caught up on all the news from Brother Tom.

I have been away from here, and it was good.  I am home…and it is great!

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New Digs!

The new barn for the animals is complete.  The carpenter finished his work last Sunday, and I put down some fresh pine shavings and Olivia and the sheep moved in.

It is so exciting when a dream becomes reality.  I have had a vision in my head of this little barn and now, there it is.  There is a small fenced off area where I will store hay, grain and shavings.  Maybe someday it will be a lambing pen.  There is a big open door for the animals to enter in and a completely sheltered area for them when the weather turns cold and windy.   Olivia and Garcon checked it out and gave their approval.  They particularly liked the window!

Olivia also claimed the door frame as her very own scratching post. The animals are happy with their new digs!

Remember the pigs?  Scotty, Maggie and Pippi?

They are all grown up now and have had some big adventures lately.  A couple of weeks ago they all went for a long ride in a truck, and ended up at a spa where they all had a complete make-over.  Yesterday we received a call that they were ready to come home, so today the truck went back and gave them a ride home.  The only problem is, now that Pippi has had her makeover she isn’t satisfied staying in the old pig pen anymore.  She demanded more appropriate accommodations!

I have to confess, I gave in, and provided her with something more to her liking.

She seems very comfortable in her new digs, but some concerns were raised about the possibility of her being lonely.  Hmmmm…maybe Garcon would like to move in with her.  Time will tell…

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