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May 26, 2016

These are all pictures taken of my garden this spring, which I think is coming along nicely, if I do say so myself! The forsythia and lilac both bloomed magnificently this year despite the digging last year.

 

I got my tomato seedlings in late so they weren't as big as I might have liked, but never mind. So far I've planted sunflowers, potatoes, corn, carrots, peas, yellow/green beans, watermelon, pumpkin, lima beans, beets, onions, tomatoes, basil, rosemary, thyme, leeks and two kinds of mint. I also have black and red currants, rhubarb, lovage and gooseberries that come back every year. Speaking of mint, it must have been a harder winter than I realized because I had a ton last year and it is ALL dead. I still cannot believe that I killed the mint. The darned strawberries that won't fruit are still going strong though.

 

I've had enthusiastic help from many small children, especially Matthew who especially loves to clip, dig and water things. Amelia thinks she likes weeding (thinning baby plants?) but she's nearly as big a nuisance as the neighbourhood cats and squirrels.

 

That's what the rubber snake is all about. So far it appears to be mostly working on me - I jump almost every time I go to the garden. There has been much less pooping in the garden since it appeared... I've also put down some eggshell to discourage cats and slugs. And when I say "I", I mean my youngest two have very enthusiastically spread out so many egg bits that Brendan thought someone might have spilled paint.

 

I put out a bit of diatomaceous earth to reduce the roly poly bug population and blood meal for the squirrels... There are plans for netting and maybe a bit of those peppers... We will see...

   

May 25, 2016

We had a new "pet" for a few days when Mr Raccoon decided to have his daytime nap up in our tree! The pictures are from breakfast time. The raccoon had to move a few times to get back into the shade throughout the day. There was much pointing and shrieking of children trying to wake him up and do something interesting. We did not discourage this as we did not really want to have a permanent visitor! In any case after a few days he has moved on. Although he's clearly not too far away since we accidentally fed him the one day we left our green bin out...

   

May 24, 2016

Elizabeth decided that she wanted to do face painting and tattoos at the Great Glebe Garage sale this coming weekend in order to try to reach her Jump Rope for Heart fundraising target. She made some posters which we attached at the end of the street.

 

Then we stopped at a dollar store conveniently located next to her orthodontist and picked up a few supplies. Orthodontist says by the way that the teeth on the bottom are tight and the teeth on top are spaced because her bite is too deep. But nothing to be done right now, wait another year and come back. He is "interested to see what will develop" (!)

 

Once we got home our artist got to work. First she recruited her brother as "help" to do the tattoos (because she can't do both at once and some people might not have time to wait). He was happy to agree and I was relieved to determine that applying temporary tattoos was within a three-year-old's skill set.

 

Matthew wanted her to give him spider related drawings. I think she delivered. He seemed happy enough. I got an owl and a butterfly. Then I had to try a cat. I think I need practice.

   

May 23, 2016

For Victoria day we went swimming at Grandma's. After swimming we always play with tinker toys, drink hot chocolate and eat copious quantities of cookies. Now that it's summer we got to watch the boats launch off the new dock at Patterson creek!

 

After swimming Brendan and I took the kids to the tulip festival to get an ice cream before Elizabeth's last music class of the year. But we might have forgotten to bring cash. So Daddy borrowed my bike to dash home for his wallet while I stood in a very long line for the ATM. I actually made it to the front of the line around the time that he made it back. Having seen the exorbitant fee they wanted I decided to wait.

 

But we didn't really have time to eat ice cream anymore so Elizabeth and I hopped onto our bikes and biked to music class while Daddy applied ice cream all over his son. Or so it appeared from the pictures that arrived during class! Elizabeth and I stopped at the ice cream truck on the way home but after MUCH debate she decided to get a slushie instead of ice cream because she didn't want to get dirty.

   

May 22, 2016

It was the annual sheep shearing festival so we headed to the farm with Grandma J! Sadly we arrived towards the end of the dog agility demonstrations (my favourite part!). Afterwards Elizabeth made a skipping rope out of yarn while the rest of the family went to watch the sheepdog herding. She was interested to see how they used to make rope, but even more interested to have a new skipping rope. In theory she's supposed to share with Matthew... After ropemaking we went to see the sheepdogs too but we've seen this demo several years in a row and it was extremely hot so after a few minutes Elizabeth was keen to go and look at some of the other demos. We made felt bracelets. The kids got a chance to try weaving and they watched a spinning demonstration.

 

Then we headed over to the very last sheep shearing demo of the day, where we met up with our neighbours. I would not want to watch sheep shearing all day, but I find my annual demo extremely amusing. Elizabeth insisted on bringing some of the wool home where it is waiting for mommy to have the energy to wash and card it.

 

Afterwards we played in the play structures for a bit, and visited the tractors and watched the cows go out to pasture for the first time since last fall. The cows were just a little excited. As soon as the gate opened they totally galloped around the corner and out of sight. Brendan says he didn't even know that cows a) could get excited or b) galloped!

   

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