Monday, September 29, 2008

Detroit Garden Works

This is my kind of store.

A considerable collection of terra cotta .... classic handmade Italian, glazed French, or English stoneware complemented by antique American pieces, contemporary Belgian orangery boxes, classic English lead, and iron and stone pieces of various provenance, making for a container collection of astonishing range.

Garden furnishings in iron, stone, concrete, and acid washed steel offer the discriminating gardener many choices of style and period.

For more delicious pictures on this store, click here.

Oh my heart is pounding .... my credit card is shaking ... I'm breaking out in sweat. Good job it's in Detroit ... a little too far for a drop and shop day.

Will it be Allright????

Reading another blog I came across this song, and although rap is not my favourite genre of music, the words in this song tugged at my heart strings.

It was written for and about the children in Ethiopia who are orphaned each day by HIV/Aids.

Take a moment and listen to the words of this song, watch the beautiful children who are singing along, many of whom are orphans themselves and feel the stirrings in your heart as you ponder the senselessness of this dread disease and what it is doing to the very heart of Africa - her beautiful people.

Afternoon Delight

This beautiful little fellow "A Boreal Owl" was spotted in a friends garden when they were out cleaning up.

Apparently they interrupted his afternoon nap, so he was quite unfazed by them working about in the garden and continued snoozing in a cedar bush for the most of the remainder of the afternoon.

What a treat.

Thanks for sharing Chris.

Friday, September 26, 2008

Favourite Things #5

It's been hard in only five days to synopsize what my favourite things are.

So I've tried to hit on the things that really make me smile, my grandbabies, coffee, autumn, sushi.

Today on my last favourites day, I am choosing friends.
My friends are so special to me. They have supported me through illness, grief, divorce, marriage, loss of jobs, new jobs and many other situations to numerous to mention.

I have made new friends through this wonderful word of blogging whom I have not even met yet, but already it feels right to call them friends.

Emily Dickinson said "My friends are my estate". Have truer words ever been spoken. A friend is more valuable than gold. What good is money if you have no friends.

Friends accept as as we are .... they love us despite our faults ..... they can be honest with us ... they are always there when we need them.

Friendship has become just within the past few months something very precious to me. Watching my mother try to cope with her grief after losing my dad and not have one single friend to help her through has made me realize that the friendships I have must be nurtured and cherished.

So dear friends, MA.G., L.G., R&H.W., W&L.S., S.W., R.G., A&D.K., F.C., C.L., V.L., C.B., here's to all of you ... may our friendships always be.

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Favourite #4

Coffee .... I love coffee .... the aroma ..... listening to the sound of the beans being ground .... the perfect combination of water (reverse osmosis only) and freshly ground coffee ..... the interminable wait for the coffee machine to drip the last drip and let me know it's ready .... the preparation of my very special coffee cup by warming it with hot water, then drying and pouring table cream to the count of 3 .... heating the cream and frothing it.

Then and only then, slowly pouring in the liquid black gold .... lifting the cup to my lips and taking that very first inhalation and taste of my morning coffee.

Mmmmmmmmmmmmm .................

Wednesday, September 24, 2008


Friends of mine recently went to Greece and shared a few of their pictures with me.

The beauty ..... the history ..... the colours ..... definitely on my wish list.


Favourite Things #3

Sushi, velvety raw tuna, crunchy daikon, slightly sweet and vinegary flavour of sushi rice, flavourful bursts as I bite into Tobiko, salty but chewy Nori, high nasal heat of Wasabi, crunchy deep fried crab in a spider roll, chewy pickled ginger .... oh my I could go on and on and on, but instead I'll just say ..........

I LOVE SUSHI!!!!!!!!!

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Favourite Things #2

Here are four-in-one of my favourite things today.

My beautiful, loving, almost make-me-weep with the enormity of my love for them grandchildren.

They always make me smile, laugh, cry, make my heart sing, crush me with their hugs and kisses and complete my world. I cannot imagine my life without even one of them filling it up.

Monday, September 22, 2008

I Thought the Renovations Were Done!!!!!!!!!

Yehaw .... my very sweet husband has taken two weeks vacation and guess what he's doing for his vacation.

Building my craft room. Here is the progress so far.

Door opening built ......

Framing going up ............

Electrical is run, 3 outlets and overhead lighting.

Insulation to keep me warm in the winter ......

All electrified, insulated and ready for vapour barrier and then drywall tomorrow.

The door opening you see directly in front is 50" wide and will accommodate two 24" french doors.

I'm starting to get excited, but it will still be a while. After the drywall, there is the ceiling to be hung, bulkheads to be boxed in, cement floors to be sealed, some sub floor just outside the room to be removed, the stairs to have risers installed, ceiling hung in the exercise room and then all the drywall has to be taped and plastered, sanded and painted.

Then, I can get the carpeting installed and finally, finally, finally, I will have a new craft room. It will be upon completion 12 x 12 ... quite substantial for little ole' me.

Favourite Things - 1

I've been feeling very unblog-like lately. When visiting my my daughter and her friends blogs I see that they are both doing a favourite things week, so I decided to follow along.

That way I can make an entry without having to think too long or hard about it.

Having said that, here is my first favourite thing ............ autumn and the beautiful tapestry of colour that Mother Nature weaves for us.

Friday, September 19, 2008


Last Thursday, my daughter excitedly called me to say they had taken this sweet little kitty from a shelter to add to their family.

Although I didn't meet Cosmo she kept telling me how sweet he was, playful, loved to be stroked and seemed to get along just fine with their other animals.

A few days after they brought Cosmo home, he started acting strange, very lethargic, did not want to eat and seemed to be in pain. She called the shelter describing the symptoms and they told her it sounded like a bad reaction to a vaccination he had recently been given. These symptoms would last for 8-10 days and to give him a little baby Motrin. She did this and he seemed to pick up.

Then today, I called Seb only to be greeted by tears and the news that dear little Cosmo died this morning.

The veterinarian did not know what he had died from ... most likely a virus.

The boys especially Ryan and Jayden were quite upset over this loss, but it would appear my daughter most of all. It just breaks my heart to hear the pain in her voice and then to know exactly what she is feeling.

It is so hard to lose a pet ... they are such a part of our family. Feeling the responsibility for that animal as well makes it hard when we can't save them.

Well, thankfully little Cosmo was with his new family and not alone in a shelter. He was loved.

A spirited and joy filled life leaves no regrets

Wednesday, September 17, 2008


Yup, you guessed it .... I started my long awaited Yoga class this morning.

Although I didn't quite manage this move shown below, I feel tonight like I actually did.

There is not one part of my body that isn't hurting, crying, overstretched, aching .....need I go on.

However, I digress, it was an amazing class and yes I will continue, it will be worth it in the long run, I know. I asked the instructor if I should practice the 4 stretches I learned today each day, but when she saw that I could not stand up straight after the class ... pretzel syndrome set in quickly ..... she said I should just practice my breathing until next Wednesday.

Tomorrow is another day, maybe I'll feel better and could do a very little bit of stretching to keep the muscles remembering what is required of them.

When I grow up I would like to be my instructor, a beautiful body with lovely defined muscles, a peaceful demeanor with a soothing voice and manner. What a lovely woman, she made the class .... although painful .... an absolute joy to attend.

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Something Old .... Something New

As promised here is the Bergere chair recovered. It turned out beautifully. The upholsterer talked me into using a rope trim rather than double welt, so the second picture shows a closeup ... it matches perfectly with the Robert Allen jacquard fabric I used to recover the chair. The separate cushion is a foam centre with 4 ozs of down on either side.

If you enlarge this picture, you can see the pattern of the fabric. I'm a traditional girl at heart, but decided to use a rather funky pattern on this chair. I love the traditional chair but with a this fabric it gives an eclectic feel .... hmmm maybe I need to change up some art and add in something modern just for the surprise quotient.

Mmmmmmmmm deliciously soft for sitting.

And then something new for the man of the house. Don has agonized for nearly 4 years about getting a flat screen TV. Our old CRT was nearly 16 years old, still working quite well, but ......... he just wanted the newer technology.

So after much research, much running from hifi store to hifi store to look at different sets, he finally decided on this Panasonic Viera 1080p Plasma TV. I think my mother moving in and buying herself a flat screen Sony Bravia LCD TV spurred him into action.

Yesterday Bell installed the new switch on our satellite so last night we enjoyed television in high definition.

We had originally wanted the 42" and I actually had the cabinet custom made to fit a 42" but the hifi store we purchased from was unable to acquire the 42" so we went with the 46". Although a little bigger than what we wanted, it fits just fine and oddly enough doesn't even look as large as our old 29" CRT. Must be the incredible thinness of the set.

Originally I had not really thought that this was such a great investment, but after watching high definition last night, I'm a believer!!!!!!!! The picture, colours & three dimensional effect is outstanding.

And here, finally is the newly completed washroom for my mother. She choose the wallpaper which really does look like her. I had the paint matched to the background of the paper.

As it is her washroom, there had to be some give and take on the decor. She brought her mirror which she loves and also has her own pictures. As for the fixtures I choose everything, but she is quite happy with the outcome.

Again here in the washroom I juxtaposed a traditional vanity in dark ebonized wood and black granite top with the modern lines of the the white & gray shower and I love the look.

And, I just love the shower. A little extra work to keep the glass clean (squeegee after every shower), but it will be worth it as long as it continues to sparkle like it is now.

Now that everything is done, Don can take his time with working on the basement and my new craft room. Hopefully it won't take tooooooooo long, it's a little too cosy trying to work together in the office.

Friday, September 12, 2008

Yummy New Yarn

Finally I have some time to knit again.

The cooler weather inspires me to pick up my needles.

This project is a cardigan made of bamboo yarn by Berroco. It feels just delicious I decided to make it in these two colours. One side in the gold, the other in the beige and then reverse the sleeves. I am going to keep the beige as the main colour so the back and bands will be beige with just one arm and one side in the gold.

Hopefully it will look as nice done as it does right now in my mind. This cardigan below is the one I have chosen and below are the two yarns shown knit up. It knits up very fast, I have only been working on this since Tuesday.

Next project ... something with that yummy Noro wool. It is so gorgeous I can barely stand it. See it here on a friends blog knit into a toque.

Almost Done

The shower finally has it's glass door.

And the washroom just requires a couple of tweaks before I show you how it turned out.

Mom is very happy with her fancy new bathroom, she choose the wallpaper, bought a very nice cabinet (seen slightly to the left in the first photo) to store medicine and other sundry items in and has hung some of her pictures and brought her things into.

I think it is starting to feel like home to her.

Here are a couple of pictures of the installation of the glass. The glass enclosure opens up the whole washroom, however it is going to take a while to get used to showering without a curtain. It feels like the water is going everywhere even though it is contained.

Wednesday, September 10, 2008


When I was a child I was very close to my cousin Patsy. My mom has one sister and this is her oldest daughter. She was like a sister to me. We visited frequently, had sleep overs and just generally enjoyed each others company. Pat was 2 1/2 years younger than me so our closeness in age gave us many things in common. My sisters were much older and younger (11 years and 8 years), so the age gap was a detriment to enjoying friendship as children.

Recently at my dad's funeral I saw Pat for the first time in many, many years.

She and her husband Brian gave up everything here in Canada to move to China many years ago.

After going to Africa with my daughter, I feel the tug of this country deep within my heart and I long to go back to help in any way, so I understand a little of the what drew Pat and Brian to China.

I have so much respect for this woman who I loved deeply as a child as she and Brian work in China to help those less fortunate.

What a gift to be able to give so completely of yourself to a country in need.

Here is Pat (left) and my youngest sister Vicki with me.

These are a few pictures that show the beauty as well as the harshness of this country Pat has chosen to make her home.

Pat, Brian and a friend.


Sunday, September 7, 2008

Planet Earth

Have you seen the Planet Earth series yet?

If you haven't ... you must put this on your "to do list".

My mother and I have spent a lazy weekend watching three dvd's from this series. Never in my life have I seen such incredible photography. Breathtaking scenery that held me in rapt attention and moved me to tears of joy at the beauty that is .... Our Planet Earth.

One segment was devoted to the mating rituals of the Bird of Paradise. The photographer sat in a "hide" for over 118 hours to get one shot of the male putting on his most interesting dance to attract the female.

This series has to be seen to be believed.

What the cameramen of BBC/Discovery Channel have captured through their sheer perseverance in remote locations are scenes and images never seen before and shown with amazing clarity and intense beauty.

Five years, 62 countries and 204 locations are what it took to make this series.

Closeup photographs of birds that show every feather, photographs of the sand dunes & patterns created on the desserts by sand storms, time lapse photography of the growth patterns on the rain forest floor. Photographs of underground caves and the beauty that they keep captive in their depths. Stalagmites and stalactites shimmering like diamonds, beautiful underwater rivers and lakes that harbour acids so lethal any living thing that falls in is instantly stripped. And then as an added bonus 150 minutes of behind the scenes documentary of exactly how difficult these shoots were.

As I write this I am watching a show put on by the Aurora Borealis, which is so incredible, it almost looks unreal as though computer generated. Shades of aqua in a silky purple night sky, over lavender glaciers. STUNNING!

The series is narrated by Sir David Attenborough and he does an incredible job.

I've shown a few photographs below from the series ... however they don't do justice to this magnificent series.


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