Wednesday, June 29, 2016


I've been having some fun testing out my new camera. It's just a step up from what I had and with a much better zoom lens. Samsung 21X


The goldfinch at my feeder.

This was taken through the garage window.
I was down there trying to coax an obsessed pastel tortie that I know to come and join her family upstairs.
But, she is not interested right now. She is on mouse-watch duty. She wouldn't give me the time of day.

Finches at the feeder.

From my little table and chairs in the shady spot of the garden I photographed a chippy that was busy filling it's face.

Then Simon's girlfriend showed up...


I have some reading up to do on my birthday gift. I think I'm going to like this camera.

I didn't forget that I'm to post the zucchini boat recipe so here goes...

Couscous and cheese-stuffed zucchini boats.
1 tbsp of butter
2 shallots diced
1 clove garlic minced
1 tomato seeded and chopped
1/4 tsp each salt & pepper
1.2 c vegetable broth
1/2 c whole wheat couscous
1 cup shredded gouda cheese
3 tbsp basil thinly sliced
1 tbsp parsley,oregano
4 medium zucchini

In a saucepan over medium heat, melt the butter, cook the shallots and garlic for three minutes.
Add tomatoes and a pinch of salt and pepper. Cook for one minute.
Add the broth, bring to a boil and stir in couscous.
Cover, remove from heat, let stand for five minutes.
Stir in 2/3 cup of cheese & all the herbs.

Cut zucchini in half (length-wise) and scoop out pulp leaving 1/2 inch thick walls.
Divide couscous mixture among zucchini and sprinkle with remaining cheese. Place on baking sheet, cover with tin-foil and bake at 400 degrees for 25 minutes.

It was delicious served with coleslaw, steamed potatoes and carrots along with olive ciabatta bread.. The retired-guy had pork ribs with his.


We had much-needed rain over-night. Now, there will be lots of weeding to do in the garden today.
But first, a long walk is in store. :)

hugs, Deb

Tuesday, June 28, 2016

"What's new, pussycat?"

I knew something didn't look right with my table in the shade. Now I'm happy. :)

The daisies will soon be gone so I am enjoying them everyday.

We had rain over-night and now the heat and humidity is back. It's so hot today. :(
But, I only have to think of our winters and it doesn't seem so exhausting.

The garden is growing and I have just found fifteen tiny green tomatoes on the plants. I look forward to the day I can pick one off the vine for lunch. The cucumbers are growing and I've just picked my second zucchini off the vine. I'm making stuffed zucchini boats for dinner. Drop by later for recipe.

Mr. & Mrs. Cardinal are back now hopefully for awhile. They visit the feeders each day and add a bright spot to the area.
The Mourning Doves arrive early each morning and again at dinner time. I'm hoping to see some baby doves soon.
But, no sign of my beloved Chickadee. I have not heard the familiar "chick-a-dee-dee-dee" for over a month now. Last year they did the same thing...lived here all year except for the months of May & June, then returned with their wee ones. :) I'm looking forward to that.

                              =^..^= =^..^=

                     "What's new, pussycat?" 

                             Pussycat, pussycat, I love you
                                                Yes, I do
                              You and your pussycat nose.

This cat is adored.
Annie is on a mission these days.
She spends most of her days in the garage, very still and facing the east wall,  in hopes to catch another free-loading mouse.
She's obsessed...
until dinner time.
The audacious one has to be swept off her feet for a photo these days.
I told her you were all going to forget about her if she didn't come out of her hidey-hole.
This is a rare capture without the scowl.
And I had to reward her with a freeze-dried chicken treat for her patience. 

"I'll count to three..."

Enjoy your day, everyone.
hugs, Deb

Sunday, June 26, 2016

Seeking shade at the mouse-house.

 The weather has been so nice that it's hard to stay inside for a minute.

But the heat does get to you so I find myself taking little breaks throughout the day from gardening, weeding and clearing new areas that I have plans for. We also added soaker hoses to the garden as there has been no rain for days.
I added a little table and chairs right behind the perennials in amongst the sumac trees today. It's shady there and shady spots are needed on this property. It has a view of the gardens and many of the bird feeders.

Red's wondering what we are doing so close to his favorite hang-out.
"Carry on, Red."

I'm also tidying up a spot at the end of the path where the little woodlot is. There's many things I can do with that area so I have some thinking to do. 

The first of many from our garden, I'm sure.
 I see zucchini bread in the oven soon.
My tomato plants are loaded with tiny tomatoes. :)

We started the day with tea, toast and scones at Miller's Oven in the town of Manotick. Always delicious.
"What's high-tea?", he asked.  He's getting into this.  lol

 I sent him here...
And at home, the squirrels, chipmunks & birds have arrived for breakfast.
Someone won't be moving from her spot for awhile.

Some say cats are all alike. Au contraire! They are all individuals and very unique. I say to them, "You don't know cats."

hugs, Deb

Friday, June 24, 2016

"Welcome, summer."

Summer has arrived and the weather is perfect.
There are tomatoes and zucchini on the vines
(we'll have lots of zucchini :-b )
and the perennial flowers are in bloom.
Half our lot is home to wild daisies.
I consider them a gift from above.

The mama house wren has left her nest.
I did not see the fledglings so I have nothing to tell you.
I just hope they were ok and left early one morning for their new life.
I really miss the little mama and regret not at least having a peak at the babies.

Once I knew they were gone I opened the back of the house and retrieved the nest.
There were two dry broken eggs inside along with the nest material.
Only two seemed odd.
So I carried it to the funny little green-house and sat it on the shelf under a box.
My intent was to photograph it the next day but the raccoons (I presume) took an interest in it over-night and it was gone by morning.
I suppose they thought there might be eggs inside. :(

So,  the little white bird-house is up for rent once again.
All birds are welcome.

hugs, Deb

Thursday, June 23, 2016

My girls (the hairy ones with whiskers)

Just wanted to make that clear as I do have two beautiful daughters, too. :)

Annie likes the camera and will allow a few photo throughout the day. And, she will sing for you. :)

She never misses a sun-puddle even if it's crammed between two chair legs.

She has taken over Sierra's spot in the kitchen window.
I love that.
She watches as the birds swoop down on the feeders.

And I love her peachy paws.

Audrey,well, she is incorrigible.
That's about all you'll get from her.
I have to sneak up on her or else she dives into her hidey-hole when she spots the camera. If I follow her with the camera the glare I get is one you don't soon forget.

Annie has some BIG news. She wants the world to know she caught her first mouse at the mouse-house last night. So now this tiny dwelling stands up to it's name.
This happened in the garage of the carriage house where she likes to spend her evenings.
She proudly brought it upstairs for all to admire.  Which we did... in between..."Oh, dear God!, ewwww, oh no!, geeesh, oh for goodness sake, get it outahere and of course, "Poor thing" because I hate to see that. :-(

"Thanks Annie but no thanks."
The retired-guy took care of it and Annie was miffed for the rest of the night.
I know she would be quite the hunter if allowed to roam the great outdoors. There would not be a bird left in sight. Not a one.
I expect now she will spend even more time down there.

hugs, Deb


Tuesday, June 21, 2016

A place of peace.

Early mornings at the mouse-house 
is a time that I like to take my cup of coffee outside to check on the gardens.
Because we live in the country, there are often feeders knocked over, branches on the ground and dirty paw marks across the butter-coloured lawn chairs.
Raccoons have been here to grab some apple slices and any seed left over from the day.
I don't mind at all as there are many with young ones and they are all hungry.

After tidying up, checking on the gardens and filling the 4 bird baths, I sometimes head back to the grave-site for my beloved cats that have passed away over the years.
It gives me a time to reflect
and I find it very peaceful.

We just recently laid to rest our dear Sierra.
I still feel the need to stand and look at her grave to have the reality of her death sink in.
It still feels unreal to me.
She was here on this property for one year only and now she's gone.
And so suddenly.

Sierra lived 13 years and to some that may seem like a long cat life but not to me. I have enjoyed the company of cats that have lived for over 20 years.
I wanted that for her.
So I still tear up as I water the ground that surrounds her spot,

add a few more shade-loving plants 
and think of her sweet personality;
her love for us.

The wall behind the grave-site was built by my ancestors over 100 years ago.
It looks out over our neighbour's pasture.
It's a humbling experience for me to stand here and think of all the hard work done by hands of generations before me.
They built this wall while clearing the land.

All the cats that I have shared my life with in the last 40 years lie in peace here.

It's a place I feel connected to them; I remember them all so vividly when I stand here.
I recall their softness; their beautiful eyes.
I thank them for their love and companionship
and tell them I miss them everyday.
And I do.
Each and everyone of them.

On my way back up the path, I was greeted by a grey squirrel
who was busy at the feeder.
I guess the early squirrel
gets the seed here.
Cheeky devil.

hugs, Deb

Monday, June 20, 2016

Busy as a Bee

It's been a busy weekend with many highlights.
What could be more fun than partaking in a fundraiser for Homes with Woofs at Bee Meadow Farm.
I was so excited not only to attend the fundraiser but to see Natalie & Gordon again. Two wonderful and dedicated rescuers of many needy animals who are now enjoying life on the rolling hills at the farm.
It was such a fun day.

We went with friends Iain and Susan from
Natalie was so busy but got around to say "hi".
Then it was on to meet the animals.
First on my list was to find Saul and say "hello".
He was even more adorable in person. 
And getting to meet Chirpy and actually cuddle a rooster was
always on my bucket list. lol
This guy wasn't hard to find.
And there goes Henry.
The goats were all out grazing along with Ophelia and her piggy friends.
Celebrity judges, Alan Neal & Carol-Anne Meehan were on hand for a live auction of beautiful hand-made dog houses, art work and photography by local artists along with a silent auction of fabulous items. There were pony rides available and Sandy, Gordon's horse, happily carried children around the beautiful farm. There was a barbecue, cupcake table (unbelievably yummy) and home-made lemonade. Natalie's honey was on sale along with freshly baked desserts, cat toys and beeswax candles.

All of Natalie's animals were out and about to meet and greet but no-one took the spot-light from Monty, the new herding dog. Pop on over to Natalie's World to meet him.

I hope they had a wonderfully successful day.
Thank you Natalie & Gordon for all that you do.

And today was a double celebration for our family. Father's Day & my birthday brought the family together for a delicious barbecue lunch and birthday cake. What a weekend! :)
"Thank you everyone for making us feel so special today."

And all this with +32 C temperatures. Perfect summery weather. :)

Hope you all had a great weekend and a Happy Father's Day.

And this morning I wish you all a wonderful summer ahead.

hugs, Deb.