Sunday, July 31, 2011

Sunday morning........

Molly is doing well, she is both eating and drinking now, and hasn't vomited since Friday.  I guess the combination of going to the vets, having a thermometer stuck up your butt, being prodded and poked, made to take two pills you didn't want to take, having a shower, which you hate and not feeling too great in amongst all this would make anyone feel unwell and want to vomit.  Especially as you can't talk, so I guess vomiting is one way of letting me know she wasn't happy!!!

So Molly and I want to thank you all for all your good wishes and concern.  I haven't had time to visit every one's blogs as I have been so busy.  We were working down the basement for a bit yesterday until the humidity got too much for us.  How did we know that; when we were drenched through with sweat.

We then ran some errands and by the time we got back in we were just plain pooped.  After supper we sat down and watched "The King's Speech," on DVD.  We have had it quite a while, my brother sent it over for us, actually it was for dd and they had been talking about it.  However as dd has seen it I thought we'd keep it until we had watched it before passing it along.

I have to say the movie was more interesting than entertaining.  As there were a number of things I was made aware of that I didn't know.  I didn't even know he stuttered, mind you he was dead before I was even born, so how would I have known?  I had heard there was no love lost between the Queen Mother and Wallis Simpson, but Wallis Simpson was portrayed in a very negative light in the movie.  As I said very interesting, rather than entertaining; and of course Colin Firth did an excellent job, he is however the quintessential British Actor in my eyes.  Loved him in the Bridget Jones movies also.

Hope you all have a relaxing Sunday.....depending how hot and humid it gets, will depend on how much work we accomplish, hoping to hang some drywall in the basement today, we'll see......

Saturday, July 30, 2011

Update on Molly........

There was half a cup of food in her bowl, and she sneaked through to eat it while we were watching tv.  She managed to keep it down and hasn't vomited since.

She had a good night and neither of us woke until after 6am which is good.

When she came downstairs I gave her half a cheese slice with the Vanectyl P as she is chewing her paws etc.  She wanted to have that cheese slice, so she must be feeling a bit better.  I will give her antibiotic a bit later, I want to see how she is feeling.   She does look a whole lot better and she has a lot more life about her.

Meanwhile we have another issue as the coyote is back eating the raspberries.  It just won't go away.  It's the same one and we are worried it will get too comfortable and move closer and closer to the house.  The only good thing at this point is that when I go out or it sees me it heads back down the field towards the woods.

I mentioned it at the vets yesterday to the technician and she said the farmers were complaining about all the coyotes this year.  I will call animal control next week and see what they say about the situation, as I don't want it shot, but I don't think it's good it keeps coming up to the house.

Also just witnessed a squirrel in my raspberry patch as well.  Is there any wildlife who doesn't not like raspberries around here???

I also wanted to say thanks to all the comments about Molly, Molly and I really appreciate all your love and concern for her. 

Friday, July 29, 2011

Poor Molly is not well at all..........


I am writing this 6:30 pm on Friday night.  She hadn't eaten for a couple of days, but finally had around 1/2 cup of food at lunch time.  She is also not drinking much and is very lethargic.  She has also had diarrhea.  So all in all not a very happy doggy.

As we are having a long weekend/bank holiday this weekend, we thought it was prudent to take her to the vet.  I managed to get an appointment this afternoon and her poor skin is red raw and infected.
I left the vets with an oral antibiotic, Vanectyl P which is an allergy pill, and some fancy dancy shampoo called Douxo to calm down her skin, oh and a bill for $253.53.

So when we get home she actually had a drink.  I gave her both pills with a cheese slice, which she wasn't happy having but finally ate.  I then carted her upstairs for a bath........remember she HATES having a bath.  Came downstairs and she got on the ottoman and lay there.  After a while she sat up and threw up everywhere?  Let her outside and she was trying to poop but the poor thing has nothing in her stomach.

So called the vet to see what I did wrong, and they told me to give her a Vanectyl P with honey an hour later and then the antibiotic an hour after that with the honey.  Meanwhile she goes outside and vomits again.  I try to give her some honey and she won't have any of it.  So I call the vet again and they tell me to not give her anything else and they will call me in the morning to see how she is.  If she vomits again they want to see her.

Feel so bad for her.......fingers crossed she is feeling better in the morning...

Oops......

When I looked outside the patio doors this morning, this is what I saw:

The weight of the logs had broken down the end of the log store.  So I had to pick all them up, so we can re-attach the end panel.  While outside I also picked up all the odds and ends of the logs to put in bags for kindling.  Have to say I was sweating buckets as it was ever so humid.

I then went down the basement and had a clean up as it was messy and put all the wood we can't burn on the woodpile.  We are still on a no burn ban but its better on the woodpile than laying in the basement.  Going to be busy this weekend working in the basement with dh.  I would love to be able to use my new washer and dryer!!

Still haven't had time to find that test been busy........

Thursday, July 28, 2011

A Test to start your day..........

I have no idea what happened to the original post, there was a test though.  Now I can't find the flipping thing......typical........made you look though I guess............so the test will be to see how many of you comment!!

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

The blueberries are ready......

I have three blueberry bushes and for the first time since we have moved here, I actually have blueberries I can pick.  Ready to see how many?


There is a just under 3/4 cup of them.

So I looked up a a blueberry and raspberry muffin recipe and came up with this one  I went and picked some raspberries and will make muffins today, if I have time.

Is it just me, or do fresh picked blueberries taste so much better than the ones in the store?

Wanted to let you know that Molly is a hundred times better since I put her on the Benadryll.  Her skin has cleared up, her coat is so much more healthier and she isn't chewing her paws and herself as much now.  That's not to say her allergies have cleared up, they are not bothering her as much.

Short and sweet today, as was super busy at work on Tuesday so am tired.

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Poor old lawn tractor is not well again........

the main belt is slipping, so it is not happy about moving period, so now have to find a belt.  Called Sears parts and spoke to a lovely lady in the Phillipines (I think that is where the call centre is) and was told the part is on a two week back order.  So I'll pop up to Barrie to the parts place and see if they have one on Wednesday.  I have to work today, so can't go today.

I finished up the last of the wedding jam on Monday, and even made a start on my own jam.  We finally got rain on Monday as we were desperate for rain.

Though I would gladly give any rain we got to those poor people in Somalia, it's awful what they are going through over there.

The news seem to be full of bad news at the moment.  What happened in Norway is just terrible and not just for the people who died, but for the people who witnessed it.

In Canada in the news featured Jack Layton stepping down while he fights a second bout of cancer.  Poor man does not look well at all, sending prayers his way for a quick recovery.

Then of course the death of Amy Winehouse, what a shock that was.  However, you just knew something like this was going to happen with the lifestyle she chose to live.  Her voice and music though was a gift to us all and I am sure she will be missed.  Lets hope she will be at peace finally.

Here is one of my favourite songs by Amy:

Monday, July 25, 2011

New table

Our family is growing and will continue to grow and so we have outgrown our dining room table.  We brought our old one with us from Britain  over 22 years ago and because it is solid pine it is still going strong and will continue to for a long time.  However as it is only five feet long and very narrow we wanted a big farmhouse style one for our farmhouse style kitchen.

We found a store in Stayner called Billy Hill Pine  They have a lot of unfinished pine furniture but also a lot of finished stuff as well.  We (dh) decided to pop in again a week or so ago and check out the tables again.  When we went in the owner was in the store, a really nice guy and we got talking and we got a great deal on the table and two end chairs and delivery.

We basically only paid for the table and got the chairs and delivery thrown in free as they were all floor models.  The brown wood chairs are ours from our old set.  Dd wants our old table and chairs when she gets a house of their own, they are renting a condo at the moment.  So I will wait to get matching black distressed side chairs until she takes the old set.  The table is a little big, a seven foot long one would have been better this one is 8 feet long, but I am really pleased with the look and it is perfect for the kitchen.

I will say if you do decide to visit the store, negotiate with them as they will move on their prices.  There is also a 15% discount coupon on their website, so if nothing else you will get that off your purchase.

Sunday, July 24, 2011

Donating Beach Towels and ordered my dress

For those of us in Canada, have you seen the General Mills cereal with the free Beach Towel offer on them?  Personally I am not interested in a free beach towel, but I see you can donate it to the Tim Hortons Childrens Foundation for a child in their programme, what a super idea.  I donated mine from the box of Banana Nut Cheerio's I ate.

Went to Toronto on Saturday to see about getting a dress for the wedding.  Went to Ediths Fashions to see what they had.  Narrowed it down to one dress but the price put me off.  I had wanted to spend less than $500 but knew that wasn't going to happen with what I liked.  So left empty handed and decided to check out this store which wasn't too far away.

To be fair this poor store didn't stand a chance as it was like going from driving a Rolls Royce to driving a Mini.  The quality, the service, the choice was just not there.  So we ended up going back to Edith's and me picking up the dress I liked at the price that I didn't like. 

However it really did look lovely, its a royal blue colour with a beaded top with cap sleeves and a chiffon floaty skirt and it is long.  The good news is that I can shorten the skirt and wear it for a wedding we`re going to next February and I will be able to wear it at Christmas parties or even going out for a special dinner when it is shortened.  The quality and workmanship of the dress is superb, and as everyone said, it`s a once in a lifetime occasion dd getting married.  They are ordering it in, in my size and it will be here by mid-September.  I was able to try the dress on in a size less than I need and so I know how I look in it. The dress I bought is made by this company, but mine isn`t on the site.

So now I have to get shoes, which shouldn't be a hard job.......fingers crossed and a new handbag.  I need to email the lady who is making my fascinator and discuss what we`re going to do with that now I have my dress.

Did I enjoy dress shopping..........NO  I tried on a `bustier,`type top which meant I couldn't breath, but at least it did suck in all my wobbly bits.  I tried a dress on that made me look like a very short barrel.  What was nice on the hanger didn`t mean it looked nice on me.  Of course the hot flashes kicked in and so it was even more uncomfortable.   Overall I was glad to see the back of the store and the dress trying on part.  If anyone in the Toronto area is looking for a dress or an outfit for a special occasion I would say look in Edith`s as it does have a wide collection of outfit`s they are pricy though.

I hope you don`t mind but I won`t be showing you a photo of the dress as I want to keep it as a surprise.

Saturday, July 23, 2011

10 dozen down & my Bell Canada bill

now onto my own jam for the year.  There is actually 9 dozen and a half dozen of raspberry jam and 9 jars of blackcurrant jam.


Dd, surrogate dd and maid of honour are coming over next month to put them in decorative boxes and tie some fancy ribbons around them, so I have been told.  As long as I don't have to do it I really don't care!!


I may make another batch which is 8 jars of raspberry jam for just in case, as we haven't got a full count yet of who will be coming to the wedding; and it's better to have too many than not enough in my humble opinion.


Also look what turned up on Friday morning:




That was pretty fast I thought, also it comes with the bonus digital timer and four mixing bowls, so that was good.  Weighs a ton weight though, luckily for me the UPS guy brought in right into the house for me.

Spent a delightful hour on the phone trying to get my Bell Canada bill cheaper........oh joy!!! After speaking to various people I managed to get and getting no where I ended up at the loyalty department and got somewhere...YEAH!!!  My monthly bill for the tv and telephone prior to me calling was $153.15 plus taxes, after calling $110.65 plus taxes for a savings of $42.50 per month.  I am a happy camper........

Neighbour called by to say he was shooting the coyotes on Saturday that have been hanging around as they are bothering his dogs.  He asked dh if I was feeding them.............I told dh I can be a dimwit but I am not that stupid!!!!

Friday, July 22, 2011

Book Review, Bridal Shower, Kitchen Aid Mixer & Swagbucks

"Fall's Like Lightening," by Shawn Grady




Smokejumper Silas Kent never expected to see pilot Elle Westmore again. In fact, reuniting makes him realize what a mistake he made all those years ago. But before he has a chance to try to make amends, he's called to lead a new crew into battle against a massive fire in the Sierra Nevadas.

And then things go very wrong, very quickly.


A suspicious engine explosion forces the crew to parachute early while Elle barely survives a crash landing. Silas reaches the ground safely, but in beginning a desperate race to reach the downed plane, he soon realizes he has more to fear than just a raging forest fire.

Not sure what to say about this book.  By reading the preview you will never guess what else this story is about, and I am not going to tell you...LOL  It wasn't a book I hated, but it wasn't a book I loved.  Why I say that is the book felt a bit cliche to me, sort of boy meets girl, they fall in love, he leaves her, she picks up the pieces and they meet years later and realise they have always loved one another.  Meanwhile a massive fire starts and then the rest of the story is intertwined in amongst it.

I found some of it a bit too much far fetched for my taste, but it still was an easy book to read, and I thought the guy posing on front of the book reminded me of Kevin Bacon, not that I am a huge fan of his, what do you think?

Star out of 5: 2.5 I neither loved this book or hated it.  It was an okay book and an easy read.  Just wish it wasn't so far fetched with the other plot line.


"Book has been provided courtesy of Baker Publishing Group and Graf-Martin Communications, Inc.
Available at your favourite bookseller from Bethany House, a division of Baker Publishing Group". 


We are having a bridal shower for dd in October, it's being held by me, groom's mother and maid of honour; figured it was easier throwing one shower than three separate ones.  Dd knows about it, doesn't know where it's being held though, so can't mention it here.  Anyhow, we (her dad and I) are getting her a Kitchen Aid mixer  I have been saving up my Amazon e-cards that I get from doing Swagbucks and while talking to her the other night I discovered they were having a sale on Kitchen Aid at Amazon, so I have ordered her this one:

She did want the Apple Green one, but this one has a more powerful motor and is the professional grade one so will last for years.  She knows about it so it isn't a surprise.  So with it being on for half price, plus free shipping and having over $250 in Amazon e-cards from Swagbucks, I paid less than $80 for it.

So now I am back to square one with my Amazon e-cards.  I know I have another $5 one to come this month and am busy saving up for August.  I think I will save them up for Christmas.  For anyone wanting to join Swagbucks just let me know and I will give you some pointers. 

If you do join up I would really appreciate it if you joined under my referral link: http://www.swagbucks.com/refer/Appleby

By the way what colour is your Kitchen Aid mixer if you have one, and if you don't want colour would you like to own?

Mine is cream and I got it for my 40th birthday off dh and yes I did ask for it.

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Book Review & bridal shower

I have no idea what on earth happened to this post, as half of it had disappeared when it published, so had to redo it again.  Sorry for any inconvenience caused.

"Pattern of Wounds," by J. Mark Bertand



A brutal murder.
An unraveling conviction.
To catch the killer, Roland March must decipher the
PATTERN OF WOUNDS
It's Christmas in Houston, and homicide detective Roland March is on the hunt for a killer. A young woman's brutal stabbing in an affluent neighborhood bears all the hallmarks of a serial murder. The only problem is that March sent the murderer to prison ten years ago. Is it a copycat--or did March convict the wrong man?
Alienated from his colleagues and with a growing rift in his marriage, March receives a series of taunting messages from the killer. The bodies pile up, the pressure builds, and the violence reaches too close to home. Up against an unfathomable evil, March struggles against the clock to understand the hidden message in the pattern of wounds.

This was not my usual genre of book, I am not really a murder mystery type of gal.  However I must admit I found this book not bad.  It kept you guessing as to "who did it," and I finally guessed "who did it" closer to the end of the book.

It was one of those books where you felt you were sitting in a smoky office like in a black and white movie with the dectective retelling you the story, if you know what I mean?

It wasn't a book that I felt I couldn't put down as I had to know what happened next, but maybe that has something to do with it not really being my normal type of book I read.  I did feel the religious aspect of the story was a bit superfluous to the actual story and there was no need to have it in the book.

Stars out of 5: a very solid 4, glad I read it, and it is worth buying or borrowing from your local library.


"Book has been provided courtesy of Baker Publishing Group and Graf-Martin Communications, Inc.
Available at your favourite bookseller from Bethany House, a division of Baker Publishing Group". 


The weather is stinking hot today, so for anyone who is suffering with the heat, take it easy.  Also please have a thought for my poor dh, as he is contracted out to a steel factory where they run water over the steel to cool it down, it will be well over 50 oC with the humidity in there today I bet.

P.S. The bridal shower part of the post I'll redo for tomorrow.......

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

You start out with this:

and after a couple hours of work you end up with this:

Made another 2 dozen jars of raspberry jam on Tuesday morning.  Skipped work this week to make jam.  All in all  it took me two hours to pick the raspberries and just over an hour and a half to make the jam.  I only need make another 2 dozen jars and then I should be done the wedding jam.  I will then start on making jam for ourselves and freezing the best raspberries.  It really is a bumper crop this year, so someone must be smiling down on me.

Would you believe I haven't cut the grass in well over two weeks.  The weather has been so hot and humid that I won't go out in it.  Yes, the grass could really do with cutting but it's going to have to wait until it gets a little cooler.

Got an email from the town and there is a total fire ban in our area, as everything is so dry.  I do have stuff on the firepit, but am in no great hurry to burn it.  I don't think the fire department would appreciate another call out to The Acreage!!!!!

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

All dancing, all singing, bells whistling, new toaster oven:

I got ourselves a new toaster oven last week as my Betty Crocker one was having issues.  It's handle had dropped off on the glass door, and the door itself wasn't too happy to open.  It was at least 15 years of age, so it had paid for itself over the years time after time.

We use our toaster oven a lot, as its a lot cheaper to run than my main stove oven and with there only being the two of us at home its ample big enough.  So I picked up this one:

This on was on sale at Canadian Tire for $59.99 and is smashing.  It not only toasts, its a convection oven, a grill/broiler and a rotisserie.  I must say though I am not used to a convection oven and how fast things cook in there, so things tend to look a bit over done at the moment..........

I cooked a quiche in there on Monday morning and I think when I poured the filling in it, it only took around 20 to 25 minutes to cook.  So all in all it is worth it's money.

On Saturday I went with dd and surrogate dd to a local store that was having it's summer sale.  Surrogate dd saw these glasses and liked them, but for some reason didn't buy them.  So me and dh went on Sunday to get them along with the napkins and the tray.  It's coming up to her birthday so will make an ideal gift for her. 



By the way I took the photo before I washed the glasses.  Her house is very modern, so they will fit in perfectly there.  I was actually things they would make lovely dessert bowls as well.  I could see my Wibbly Wobbly Pudding in them.

Monday, July 18, 2011

Hot, hot, hot......

We're in the middle of a heatwave at the moment, with temperatures to hit the mid-40's (100 oF+) by the middle of the week.  Thank goodness for a/c as there is no way we would survive in this heat and humidity.

Dh took me out to our closest major mall, Georgian Mall in Barrie, to see if there was any suitable outfits for this wedding.  Scored a big fat zero.  So I have decided to go downtown Toronto next weekend to see if I can find something.  For those of you in Canada, I popped into The Bay in the mall, and not only do they NOT carry plus sizes, they don't carry petite sizes, which I thought was rather strange.  I know it is a smaller mall, but you would think they would carry both plus and petite sizes?  We are going to check out this store as I saw a number of outfits I like on their site.

I still can't leave messages on these blogs:John D

Patricia from Piece By Piece  UPDATE, I CAN NOW POST COMMENTS ON PATRICIA'S BLOG!!

Karine

If you could allow anonymous comments, then I will be able to leave a message.  I am sure there are others I have the same problem with, I just can't think of them off the top of my head.

Finally, someone is looking very relaxed:

The heat is getting to Molly also.  However I have started giving her one Benadryll pill in the morning 25mg, and she isn't suffering as much with her allergies, so that's some good news.  Plus it's a heck of a lot cheaper than the vets pills I get for her.

Sunday, July 17, 2011

It started out looking like this:

and after a few hours hard work ended up looking like this:

Thanks to everyone who helped stack the logs.  It went a lot easier as there were more hands helping.  There is three bush cords there and it cost us $280 (cash) for each bush cord.  We used the same company we used last year from Singhampton.

Meanwhile dh and ds got busy putting in the new stairs:

It is all to stain and varnish which I'll get too after the plumber and tile installer have been in and done their work.

I helped out a little with the logs, but went indoors to make a batch of jam for everyone to take home, plus I sorted out lunch for everyone.  Nothing exciting just different filled rolls, roast beef, ham, chicken and cheese and onion, plus chips/crisps.  Along with fresh strawberries and raspberries with ice cream and squirty cream.

By the way I cooked a whole chicken overnight in the crockpot, just season, DO NOT add water and it is so moist.

My allergies are driving me crazy, I want to pull off my nose and pull off my ear lobes as they are so itchy.  I have even resorted to using Nasonex in my nose, which I hate doing.  I am going to be hibernating over the next few days as it is so hot and humid.

Do you like the heat and humidity?

Saturday, July 16, 2011

Blackcurrant Jam and Lasagna

are both things I have never made from scratch before.

The lasagna was super simple and I just followed the recipe from the box.  It was supposed to feed 8......4 is more realistic.  Anyhow it was good.

Then after supper on Friday night I made blackcurrant jam. 

Recipe:

2 lbs blackcurrants cleaned....probably take you a couple of hours just to top and tail the bloody things!!
1 1/2 pints of water, around 3 cups
3 lbs of sugar

Bring the blackcurrants to a boil in the water and then turn the heat down to a simmer and cook for half and hour of so until softened.  Add the sugar, and bring up to a boil and boil for a couple of minutes, or until the jam starts to set on a saucer.

Pour into sterilized jars and seal.  I got nine 250ml/1/2 pint jars of jam plus another container.  Can't say if it tastes alright as I can't stand blackcurrants.  So I'll give the Tupperware container to my dad and he can be the guinea pig and see if it tastes alright!!






Got a heck of a busy weekend ahead of us, and the weather is going to be stinking hot....oh joy!!!  Hope you enjoy your weekend,

Gill

Friday, July 15, 2011

Saga of the Mother of The Bride Dress........

So I ordered a dress from the States for the wedding.  It came this week and looks lovely.......well that was until I put it on.......  It was a perfect fit on the chest but was way too tight on the stomach area, which is where I carry my weight.  So I have to send it back and if I reorder it in a larger size, it is going to be too big on the top, so I am not convinced it would work.

So last night we went to a Bridal store to check out their Mother of The Bride dresses.  First of all the majority of the dresses were in a sample size 10.  Yes I would love to be a size ten but I'm not even close to being that, so of cause I couldn't try any of those on.  There was one bigger sized dress I tried on but it was in a shiny satin fabric that reminded me of a table cloth.

Anyhow I fell in love with this one dress, couldn't try it on, but held it up to me and I loved it.  However, and there is always a however.  If I ordered it regularly it wouldn't come until middle of October and that is cutting it fine, so it would have to be a rush order and that costs an extra $50, add that to the price of the dress and taxes that would bring the dress up to $500!!!!!  Then when she took my measurements  I of course don't fit one size in particular and so she is upgrading me to a plus size so another $60 tacked on there.

However with her ordering me the bigger size, the bust would have to be taken in by at least 6 inches and the hips were going to be 9 inches too big.  The smaller size fit alright on the bust and hips, but were two inches too small on my waist.  So then you can tack on another $100 - $200 for alterations.  I have paid $145 for the fascinator, still have to get shoes and a handbag, all in all I would be spending $1,000 on a bloody outfit that I will wear only a couple of times.

I told dd this and she knows of a store in downtown Toronto where they carry a lot of fancy dresses, so we are going to check that out.  So now my project for the next couple of weeks in between the jam making is to try and find a dress.  Will say the woman who served me in the store also said there were cheaper places to buy a dress from.  I think they tack on an extra 50% when it's for the mother of the bride!!!

Wish me luck.......

Thursday, July 14, 2011

What's on your to do list today?

I have a bit to do today that includes:

  • Online Banking
  • Sorting out my inbox again!!
  • Making three batches of Raspberry Jam
  • Big garbage today, so that to haul down to the bottom of the driveway
  • Cleaning house
  • Making a lasagna for supper
  • Picking more blackcurrants, up to 2 lbs 4oz picked and topped and tailed, only another 2lb's to go.
I think that is enough for one day, don't you?  What are you up to?

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Where are the blueberries?

I got this in an email and found it quite interesting:

We all know that real blueberries are full of antioxidents but look at what several BIG food companies are doing to make for huge profits.  Quite the video.
Isn’t this something?
Nothing but disregard and greed!
 
Who would have thought Kelloggs or Betty Crocker products deceiving? Watch for yourself , they are killing us little by little. Here is the link and please watch it and send it to your friends.   
 
Seems like I have full blown allergies now, as I am ready to pull off my nose and my eyes are watering, so I am persevering with the Benadryll.  I don't have to drive today, so I can dope myself up with it.  I swear this living in the country will be the death of me!!!
 
Got some helpers coming over today to pick raspberries, so we should get a lot picked.  I also want to get more jam made, so that should keep me out of mischief.  I picked up another 6 dozen jam jars, so that makes 10 dozen, which should in theory be enough..............

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Nasty, nasty, nasty

also, itchy, itchy, itchy.  I am having bad reactions to insect bites this year.  This one is on the top of my under arm and is driving me crazy.




I even went into town to get some oral medication to take, as the Benedryl stick just wasn't doing the job at all.  So I took two Benedryl pills just after 11 am, and then rang Jane but I ended up having to cut the conversation short as I could hardly keep my eyes open.  I ended up going to bed for an hour, but still felt groggy after I got up.  So I guess I won't be taking many of those pills.

I checked my site meter for the first time in a while and it seems I am averaging around 324 people visiting my blog.  To all of you a big, big thank you for popping by to read my blog.  Please feel free to leave a comment, as I love to read them. ( I have installed a site meter it's at the bottom of the page and was free, so anyone can install one here is a link: http://www.sitemeter.com/)

Picked another pile of raspberries also on Monday morning, so will make jam on Wednesday.  I think I will have more than enough rasps to make all my jam.  It is stinking hot around here, so hibernating indoors with the a/c on.  I have no idea how we managed the first year here without a/c, even Molly is just going out to do her business and is right back in again because of the heat.

Off to work today, have a terrific Tuesday everyone!!

Monday, July 11, 2011

25 down, only 75 more to go......

Sunday afternoon I made three batches of jam and managed to can 25 half pint jars.


I have to say I am lucky as I was short around one cup of crushed raspberries, so I just popped outside and picked more rasps, crushed them and made jam, so they were very fresh.


One thing I do is pop a knob of butter in the jam as it cuts down on the foam.

After supper I picked some blackcurrants and then spent a delightful 45 minutes topping and tailing all 12 ounces of them!!!
Due to the fact this is not a job I enjoy I will do a little bit every night until I have enough to make my jam.

Sunday, July 10, 2011

Round one to me......only just though

So my dear friend Wiley Coyote had to be chased away a couple of times on Saturday from the raspberry patch.  Dh went after it one time, then I caught him/her back in there later on, so I put my wellies on and picked up the sweeping brush and headed down the field to chase him/her away.  He/her knew I meant business, and I wasn't happy.  Even if there had been a few of them I would have chased them all away.  I was so ticked off.  Any other year I wouldn't mind sharing my raspberries with the wildlife, but I need every one last raspberry as I need to make at least 100 1/2 pint jars of jam for wedding favors.

So after supper when it was a little cooler, still in the 80's though, I went and picked raspberries for around 90 minutes.  Below is what I got picked.
There is enough there for nearly two batches of jam.  I will be outside first thing on Sunday morning to pick more and hopefully on Sunday afternoon I will make a start on making the jam. 

I need to make around 13 batches of raspberry jam and 2 or 3 batches of blackcurrant jam.  So I guess I am going to be busy for the next few weeks................

Saturday, July 9, 2011

Looks like someone else likes the raspberries as well.......

The raspberries are starting to ripen and I need to start picking.  However look who I caught eating raspberries this morning:

Yes I can see you......

Yes I am coming to get you:


Yes, you had better run away, as I am not happy:


The silly thing stood  in the middle of the field barking and howling at me for a while.  Meanwhile I could hear Molly in the house howling as well, so thought I had better go in as dh was still sleeping.

The coyote then came back through the raspberry bushes, but didn't stop before it went into the field down to the creek.  So now I must get those raspberries picked before it eats them all.

Friday, July 8, 2011

House of my dreams? Nope I'll pass....

I enjoy looking at houses.  I think it's a great place to get ideas for your own home.  Got this link as part of a newsletter I get every week and it features this house  I got ZERO ideas from this place......actually that's a lie, I did actually like the stair carpet.  However if I had $900,000 I certainly wouldn't be buying that place, however each to their own I guess, as the price does reflect the location.....

Another book review: "The Blessed," by Ann H. Gabhart

Trapped by obligation, one woman longs for the freedom of true love.

It is 1844 and Lacey Bishop's life is a tangled mess. When circumstances move Lacey to a nearby Shaker village, she is not prepared for the new life that awaits her. In the midst of her deep loneliness, Lacey works to fit in with this odd group. But everything shifts when she finds herself drawn to a Shaker man in a village where such relationships are forbidden.

Can Lacey ever find true happiness in this mysterious place?

This book was sort of interesting from the Shaker religion point of view, I learned things I didn't know about them.  However, boy was it long winded, I felt as though we went round the block and back again to get anywhere.  Mind you the last book I read by the author here, I didn't really have anything good to say either, so maybe I should leave this poor author alone and avoid her books.

If you are at all interested in the Shaker's then I would suggest you read this book for that and that alone, otherwise, don't say I didn't warn you.

Stars out of 5: 2.5 sorry it wasn't really my cup of tea.

"Book has been provided courtesy of Baker Publishing Group and Graf-Martin Communications, Inc.  Available at your favourite bookseller from Revell, a division of Baker Publishing Group".


Here is a link to a group of Shakers living in Maine, if you want to read more.  Also here is another link to the history of the Shaker religion.   Must say I love the Shaker style of furniture!!

Thursday, July 7, 2011

A book that I couldn't put down.......

"Lion of Babylon," by Davis Bunn


Marc Royce has been a State Department agent involved in covert operations--that is, until personal issues lead to his dismissal.

When Alex Baird goes missing in war-torn Baghdad, State comes calling again. Alex is a CIA agent--and a close friend of Royce. Three others have also dropped out of sight--a nurse, an aid worker, a wealthy young Iraqi. Are these cases linked? Rumors circulate about a kidnapping conspiracy, yet both American and local officials refuse to pursue it.

Blocked at every turn, Royce eventually unearths a trail of secret encounters between sworn enemies. What he discovers could transform the course of rivalry and reconciliation throughout the Mideast. As the human and political drama escalates, can one man summon the courage to make a difference?

First let me say this isn't my usual type of book I read, but I am really glad I did, as it was one of those books I couldn't put down until I had read the last page.  Why, well it's set in an age we all remember, post Saddam Hussein.  It gives an insight into both sides of that country from an American point of view and an Iraqi point of view.  It also makes you realize everything isn't want it looks to be at face value.  It mixes religion in amongst the book so its not a typical war book.  The mystery element is one which I never did solve prior to the author telling us.  The story was so fast paced you were hooked from the very first chapter.


However, and there is always a however, I did find it sort of typical that the hero was an American who stepped in to save the day and make friends with more Iraqi's in a short period of time than the whole American force put together.

Stars out of 5: A very solid 5 a book I would tell everyone to read......

"Book has been provided courtesy of Baker Publishing Group and Graf-Martin Communications, Inc.
Available at your favourite bookseller from Bethany House, a division of Baker Publishing Group". 


Feeling a bit better, but my stomach still isn't right.  I guess this is one way of finally losing some weight!!!

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

"A banana a day keeps the doctor away!"

I am not feeling well at the moment and have not felt like eating..........so yes I must be sick!!!  As I have to take some medication in the morning, and don't like taking it with an empty stomach I have been having a banana to put something in my stomach.   I discovered banana's are actually pretty good for you:

Depression. Banana contains “tryptophan” that helps the body to produce serotonin—which has a calming effect on the brain that makes you feel relaxed and calm. It can also help people suffering from “Seasonal Affective Disorder” or “Winter Depression”. Depressive symptoms can be reduced by just eating banana. Can you believe that?

Constipation. Banana in your diet can help restore normal bowel movement.

Premenstrual syndrome (PMT). Don't take supplemental drugs, just take banana. Banana is full of vitamin B6, which can regulate blood sugar levels, and helps normalize premenstrual syndrome.

Stress. When we are stressed, our metabolic rate rises, thereby reducing potassium levels. Potassium plays a big role in normalizing the heartbeat and oxygen to the brain, and in regulating water fluid in the body. Thus, potassium taken from banana can help rebalance these problems.

Anemia. Banana is high in iron, which can stimulate the production of hemoglobin in the blood and prevent anemia.

Hangover. One of the easiest ways to relieve from hangover symptoms is to make a banana milk shake, sweetened with honey. The banana calms the stomach and, with a drop of honey, builds up depleted blood sugar levels, while the milk soothes and rehydrates your system.

Smoking. It is hard for chain-smokers to stop smoking. When you stop and give up smoking, try the banana diet. Vitamin B6 and B12 as well as potassium and magnesium contents of banana can help the body recover from bad effects of nicotine withdrawal.

Heartburn. Banana has a natural antacid effect in the body, thus eating banana can sooth and relieves heartburn.

Morning Sickness. Snack on banana between every meal. This will help keep blood sugar levels up and prevent morning sickness.

Ulcer. Banana is served for ulcer patients in many hospitals. It is because of its soft texture and smoothness that makes it good for intestinal disorders. Banana can neutralize over-acidity and reduces irritation by means of coating the lining of the stomach.

Temperature Control. Banana can lower both the physical and emotional temperature of the body. In fact, in tropical countries, some doctors recommend pregnant women to eat bananas to make sure their baby is born with a cool temperature.

Insect Bites. Rub the affected area with the inside of the banana peel to reduce swelling and irritation.

Thanks to this site for the info

What is wrong with me I do not know, I have had an awful bad stomach (with diarrhea), feeling of nausea, lack of appetite and just plain not feeling good.  I made myself have some lentil soup last night, otherwise I am eating arrowroot cookies, flat ginger ale, water and I did have two cups of tea yesterday with a little milk in them, oh and my banana.  I am trying to avoid dairy, dried toast just doesn't appeal to me.  I missed work yesterday but am going in today.

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

This looks icky.........

I have these on my pears trees, no idea what they are but thought I'd enlarge the photos so you got a good look!!
They are not on my apple trees, but the leaves are all rusty and chewed on both the pear and the apple trees.

I took a sample of the leaf and the black things to the garden centre and they told me to spray them with this:

Now I am not one to use chemical on my garden, but the guy said I could drink this stuff if I so desired........I don't......as it doesn't contain pesticides as our Provincial Government doesn't allow it.

Molly started barking up a storm the other night, as this daft turkey went wandering by.......and then it came back for another look....crazy bird..........not sure what Molly would have done if we had let her out?
Found a new site called "What's Cooking Grandma"  I was looking for recipes for blackcurrant jam and stumbled accross this site.  My blackcurrants are starting to darken and ripen, so I reckon in another week I will make a start on picking them.  We don't like blackcurrants but I wanted to do a few pots as favours for the wedding along with the raspberry jam.  The rasps are still a couple of weeks away from being ready.

Monday, July 4, 2011

The story behind the 26,000 emails.........

Back in July of 2009 I set up a Gmail account, where I have been sending and receiving emails.  Unbeknown to me although I have been deleting them from my inbox etc, I hadn't been deleting them from the server, and that is where I am trying to delete them from.  So in two years I have sent and have received over 26,000 emails........


30 years today me and dh went out on our first date.  I would think we went to the pub, can't really remember anything else about it.  It is also one of my niece's birthday's today she is 15 years of age, just seems like yesterday when she was born.  Time is certainly flying by fast.

I have just read the book, "Jesus, My Father, The CIA, and Me, A memoir of sorts," by Ian Morgan Cron

 “When I first discovered the grainy picture in my mother’s desk—me as a towheaded two year old sitting in what I remember was a salmon-orange-stained lifeboat—I was overwhelmed by the feeling that the boy in the boat was not waving and laughing at the person snapping the photo as much as he was frantically trying to get the attention of the man I am today. The boy was beckoning me to join him on a voyage through the harrowing straits of memory. He was gambling that if we survived the passage, we might discover an ocean where the past would become the wind at our back rather than a driving gale to the nose of our boat. This book is the record of that voyage.”

Reading the excerpt of the book, I must admit I didn't know what to expect exactly, but the title intrigued me so I thought I would give it a go.  Will admit to it being slow going at first but once you get into it you will be pleasantly surprised. 

You go through an array of emotions, from laughing out loud at the funny stories he tells you, to being sad and angry at the way his alcoholic father treats the author.  He also takes you through the ups and downs of his love/hate relationship with the church and God.

Its well worth the read and not overly hard.

Stars out of 5: 3.5 it wasn't the best book out there but a pretty interesting read, which will make you appreciate what you have in life.

"Book has been provided courtesy of Baker Publishing Group and Graf-Martin Communications, Inc. 

Available at your favourite bookseller from Thomas Nelson". 

Saturday, July 2, 2011

Didn't have a chance to post this morning....

been busy all day, but now as the temperatures are in the low 40's with the humidity I am now hibernating in the house with the a/c on.

Dh was busy yesterday in the new basement, which has resulted in this:


We now have to bring in the new stairs from the garage and install them.  We were out on Saturday afternoon looking for ceramic floor tiles for the new laundry room.  Dh thinks I am picky; come to think about it I am picky.  I have an idea in my head how I want it too look and have seen a couple of tiles I like, but they are $3.49 a tile so that is going to cost nearly $300 + taxes for the tiles.  I of course don't want to pay that much so dh has decided I should get on with it myself looking for these tiles!!!

All over the place the canola crop is in flower and it looks just lovely:

That is what my header photo is of as well, they make canola oil out of it.



I am now going to be busy for the rest of the night deleting emails from my Gmail account, as I haven't deleted them from the server.  I have over 26,000 emails to delete and can only delete 50 at a time!!!  Guess I am going to be stuck on my laptop all night doing that, as dh wants me to accomplish this before we install the new hard drive in the desktop.......{{{SIGH}}}

Friday, July 1, 2011

Happy Canada Day!

It's Canada Day here in Canada.

Canada Day (French: Fête du Canada), formerly Dominion Day (French: Le Jour de la Confédération), is the national day of Canada, a federal statutory holiday celebrating the anniversary of the July 1, 1867, enactment of the British North America Act (today called the Constitution Act, 1867), which united three British colonies into a single country, called Canada, within the British Empire.[1][2][3] Originally called Dominion Day, the name was changed in 1982, the year that Canada gained full independence from the United Kingdom. Canada Day observances take place throughout Canada as well as internationally.

Thanks to Wikepedia for the info.

Dh has the day off which is good.  Our plan for the day is to do some regular jobs around the house, but dh is going to be working down the new basement doing some structural work.  We are pulling out the old stairs and moving the position of them slightly and putting in new beams and walls down there.  We have a guy coming in to give us a quote on tiling the floor in the laundry room we are putting in there as well.  There is a lot of prep work as well sorting the floor out, so it's not a straight forward simple job.

We are not planning on working all weekend, but do hope to get a lot of work done.

For all the Canadians out there enjoy your Canada Day whatever you decide to do.