Thursday, November 22, 2012

Not A Good Morning- A Move

This whole week has been trying on me. Every time I think I have accomplished one hurdle three more pop up. Today was no different. One of my issues this morning was that my blog no longer has photo space ( already). I refuse to purchase more photo space so have begun yet another blog as www.onesimplefarmgirl2.blogspot.com. Thank-you for your patience.

Monday, November 19, 2012

John Deere Wedding and Smocked Dresses

Friday night I began smocking the dresses for the flower girls at my daughters John Deere Wedding.When I think of all the beautiful, lacy dresses with hundreds of hours spent smocking these dresses in the past, the idea of picture smocking farm scenes just seems appalling. But this is what I am doing.

The dresses are a very fine green gingham, 1/8 inch squares to be exact. I found the fabric...........well the fabric screamed out to me and was on the 40% off rack until the end of October. I bought enough for my granddaughters who are in their mom's wedding and thought well if daughter doesn't like I will smock them anyway for summer dresses.

Daughter did like them and this is the smocking plate I am using......
with some changes. The corn is going and I am making sunflowers instead. There are two babies in this wedding coming down the isle in wagons. I cannot smock this depth of rows on a baby dress. So the two babies will have sunflowers smocked across, which I have yet to figure out what I am doing, but that is for a later date. I also am not doing the cabbages below the tractor. One dress is a size three, and 16 rows is quite deep for a small child.

As of Sunday night, this is where I have gone to.....
This believe it or not is 6 hours of pleating and smocking. Picture smocking takes a lot of time. Note the barn door to the right of the large 'X'? Well I mucked it up last night and tonight tore this whole section out and redid it.
This is how far I am at bedtime tonight. Eight hours of smocking. The barn still needs outline stitches in black, which I will do when I have black on the needle for the tractor. So far the wheels have been the biggest challenge. I will start with the big tractor wheel tomorrow.

This afternoon on my way home from the city, I stopped at a friends house because she has been missing in action the last three weeks. She had breast cancer two years ago and I was worried about her. So I dropped in. She was fine, just on new medication that makes her feel awful. Now this lady always meets you at the door or outside, never asks you in. Well today she did ask me in. Said she had fabric she has been wanting to give me but couldn't get to it in the closet. Could I help? Okay now I thought she meant she couldn't reach it in the closet and my tall stature could! Was I wrong!! She is a hoarder!!! Couldn't get to the closet. I must have moved 20 boxes into the hallway to get to the closet. Good news was I came home with enough fabric to make myself 8 skirts and two dresses and the lining. I  felt totally dirty when I came out of there. I stripped at the door of my kitchen and threw my clothes in the wash, and then washed all the fabric. Yuck! How on earth can people live like that? Needless to say, it made my house seem really clean and smelling nice ( food in the slow cooker helped), and gave me this desire to want to clean. Hope that desire lasts into tomorrow!



Friday, November 16, 2012

George is 16 Today

The puppy pictures of him are all glues into my farm log book and I would have to scan them in. Too much work! But here he is at about 10 years of age and here he is now.
Looking less like a Shepard and more like a wolf.
He is 60% wolf or so the vets tell me, and a remarkable stature which is why he has lived so long, that and being spoiled. The girls here call him " Mom's suck!".
Shepard's have a lower hip line and get terrible hip displacer. George now at 16 has a wavering hip and no long will go on long walks because it hurts. But he does not have these hip issues, because I am told he is wolf.
I bought him from the human society when he was 4 months old. I was to be his third owner already. I had to sign a waiver saying I would not return him. the lady at the Human Society kept telling me " You know how big he is going to be?" I said yes I knew, but that was what I wanted. I had a passion for German Shepard's and I needed him to protect my children from bears and wild animals here on the farm. It is comforting to know that they were protected wherever they went on the farm.

As a puppy he proved to be hard work. Oh he never messed in the house. Him mom had trained him to do his business in the woods. But lamb ears were something to be chewed and if you wanted a drink, suck on a cow teet, free meat in the hen house. Oh the fun and games of it all! He never would play ball, or stick. He would look at you like you were mad to ask him to go get it. He would never pull a sled like my girl Shepard's before him. No he was content to herd dairy cattle into the barn at night time and get them all roiled up so they wouldn't milk. He was lucky I didn't kill him the first two years. But over time a ewe butted heads with him and it hurt. He then slept with the sheep rather then try and eat them. My nastiest of Herefords kicked him sky high one morning ( I saw it) and that was his free milkshake days over. Going after a chicken meant mom chasing him with a baseball bat. No more chickens for him. Although it took him 12 years to forget that porcupines put quills all in your face.

That said he loved the kids. Walked everywhere with them. Protected them from strangers that came on the farm. The milk truck drive and the oil truck drive carry dog cookies with them. The Hydro man still hocks the horn, won't come out for fear of him.

These days he sleeps most of the day. He walks with me to collect the mail at the end of the lane. Follows me into the garden and sleeps while I work .

He is deaf, and his eye sight not what it use to be. He no longer barks, he circles 20 times the spot he is going to lay down in and usually falls outside that ring. I think he has dementia as well. But like an old man, you just want to hug them.

George is 16 today. the longest I ever had a dog.


Thursday, November 15, 2012

Baby Shower Invitations

I am throwing a baby shower for a young mom in December. There will be about 50 women invited to this shower. I needed an inexpensive way to invite all these ladies. It took me a week of thinking and browsing ideas on the Net and coming up with something affordable.
This is what I came up with.
I haven't applied the sticker yet because this invitation is my template for the rest.

I bought 50 sheets of pastel coloured paper at Micheals that came to $2.22 after the 40% off coupon and taxes.

The stickers, which I really wanted something a little bigger but was not in the budget came to $7.68 at 50% and taxes. I got 56 stickers for this price.


The invitations were printed on the computer with all the information.

Last night I cut 14 of them out. It is going to take time, and then to draw stitch lines on them all. I however won't need envelopes as I can write the names on the back side and can hand them out.

Grocery Challenge Week ending Nov 18

Grocery Challenge this week ending November 18

Budget: $300.00

Fresh Co
---------------
sugar  1.77
2 x brown sugar @ 1.97each = 3.94
2 x icing sugar @ 1.97 each = 3.94
Penne pasta .97- .75 coupon = .22
--------------------------------------------------------
Total $9.87

Valu Mart
-----------------
Pedigree dog food 17.99-5.00 coupon= 12.99
Special K  3.99
NN Graham Crumbs 2.99
PC chocolate chips 2.79
2 pizza crusts @ 3.19 each = 6.38-50%off= 3.20
banana's 1.55-50%off = .78
tax 1.60
--------------------------------------------------------------------------
Total $ 27.61

Foodland
---------------
Ground Beef 12.07

Shoppers
-----------------
2x milk @ 4.13 each= 8.26
peanut butter 3.99
---------------------------------------------
Total $12.25

No Frills
--------------
yogurt 2.99
Honey Buntches of Oats PM Walmart 2.00
Marshmellows 1.99
peanuts 2.79
soda crackers 1.99
frozen corn 2.29
Life cereal 1.97
2x whole wehat bread @ 197 each = 3.94
hot dogs 1.00
banana 1.66
2 x blueberries @ 1.47 each = 2.94
raspberries 1.47
cauliflower 1.49
apples 4.97
mushrooms 1.97
taxes .62
---------------------------------
Total 43.07

Total grocery budget for the month is $300.
Total coupons used this week $5.75
Total spent: $104.87
Total Spent so far :$268.92
Total left to spend for the month: $31.08

Groceries this week turned out to be a little more then I expected and the only meat I bought was hot dogs which goes into a winter stew recipe I have. At $1.00 I couldn't justify NOT getting them,and ground beef which is already made into dishes for later this month. The good news is I have everything for baking to get us through to mid-January. I have enough Shoppers points to buy milk/ cheese and anything needed to fill this months budget. 

The grocery flyers came out yesterday for next week. There is NOTHING I see on sale or specials I need to get. So next week will be a fruit week,( and dog food) for me. I think I can make this month okay. I noticed prices have jumped. people will pay anything at the holidays! I also noticed more pre-made items in the flyers.

Went to Super Store with my rain checks of ground beef yesterday and they have none in stock.........still! I shall use them in December with a new budget. That said I don't shop much in December. I can't tolerate the amount of stuff that meets the eye. It gives me anxieties, like I need to get out. Items are piled high and there is way too much on the floor. Walmart is the worst! Superstore is getting there right now with their Insiders Report items. 

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Montessori Photo

My four year old. Her Montessori picture.

Girls Aran Knit Sweater

I made this sweater for my four year old way back in the spring. Then tucked it on the shelf in my closet. Last week I found it and noticed I had not put any buttons on it. Got some yesterday.............finally. Now she can wear it!


Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Pink Baby Sweater

I finished knitting this little sweater for my third granddaughter two weeks ago, but finally purchased the buttons for it yesterday. It is 6 month sweater which turned out quite nice.

Flurries this Morning

We had flurries coming out of the sky this morning after chores were done. A little reminder that winter is on route.

Gill you asked me about black tarp yesterday. I get mine at Home Hardware, but any dark tarp will do. The darkness does not allow light to penetrate through. You might ask at a building site as wood is often bundled in a plastic like tarp that is black on one side and they just throw it out.

The idea of piling leaves in a garden is good but creates a lot of acid in the soil. Fine for bulbs and natural plants from the area where the leaves come from but not so for a lot of vegetables. You will need to neutralize the soil come spring in a vegetable patch. I find ashes work well. Just till it all together with the soil in the spring and compost. Peas don't grow well where leaves were put. Instead of peas you get mushrooms. Experience speaking here!

I am mostly home today. Need to get dog food. Vegetarian night. I am making a vegetable pot pie. So a simple meal.

I bought buttons yesterday for sweaters I have knitted. One for the new baby and one for my four year old. Ironically the wool was given to me, the buttons cost as much as the wool would have! Hope to get these sewn on whilst the girls do their schoolwork.

I have a baby shower that I am planning for 50+ ladies on December 8th. I am fine tuning the invitations this morning and dreaming up some entertainment for the group. I have ideas but need to find information to fulfill the idea. I am also limited in space as the shower is in a house.

Then I hope to clean out the hall closet where we keep our Bible literature and movies. Our VHS has finally died. I am disappointed because I copied all Road to Avonlea and Anne of Green gables from the TV back in 1991 to VHS. I think mom still has a machine she isn't using. I am hopeful, but if not I shall have to throw these movies out. I refuse to buy DVD's anymore. I am sure the DVD system is short lived too. We get three DVD's a week from the library.Three for selection, but rarely do we see two let alone three. readers in this house and the computer has a lot to offer as well.

Life here.

Monday, November 12, 2012

Homemaking Monday : November 12

The weather here:

 is damp this morning the promising of a fantastic warm( for November +16C or 66F)  and hopefully some sunshine.

Right now:
I am waiting on the 21 year old, as we are heading to the city for doctor appointments and some winter shopping.

Thinking:
How I would dearly love to just stay home and enjoy this last warm spell before the air is cold and crisp and I am much more inside.

Reading Pile:
I have a knitting book by the bed on knitting baby socks.
Betty Crocker cookbook for the heart
Bible reading of Amos

Menu:
Monday: stewed meatballs, Egyptian salad, peas.
Tuesday: vegetarian pot pie
Wednesday: meatloaf, rice and carrots
Thursday: chicken tights, mashed potato, spinach and beets
Friday: potato and sausage with kale
Saturday: Pizza
Sunday: Leftovers and salad

My To do List:
*get more black tarps to kill off the grass and prepare the ground for a new garden
* mend yet more socks, my shawl and repair the zipper in my winter barn coat
* finish Mike's other sock
* start to smock flower girl dresses for daughters wedding.

On My Needles
socks in Dk for Mike in an unusual size.
also pleated fabric for smocked dresses for the wedding

Looking Around the House
I have done a lot of cooking this weekend for a barn raising this week. I had to make enough stew  and brownies for 20 men. That is a lot of dishes ! Also need to get some dusting done. The house is clean but don't speak to me about the barn.

From my Camera
Dawn here at Locus Lane Farm


Sunday, November 11, 2012

Baby Smocked Nighties

Daughter has been told to be prepared for a premee baby this time around, as she has had faux labour a few times and has been rushed to the hospital only to come home again. This baby due date is January 23,2013, but who knows what will happen. I have smocked two nighties for the baby.


Saturday, November 10, 2012

Eco-Fan

Our old Eco-fan would no longer run. Dearest had over heated the cook stove last winter and the sring that propels the fan died. I wasn't going to get a new one, but I broke down after a few damp cool nights.

The cook stove is at the far end of the kitchen and it heats the house but without a fan, it only heats the kitchen to 'hot' and the rest of the house is still kind of cool. I can't believe the difference this little fan makes.

I can knit in comfort once again!

Friday, November 9, 2012

Covering the November List

Dreary day out today, also feels a little cold inside the house. So After school got underway here I got to work from my November list.
I cleaned out the bench in the kitchen. Found some "lost" mitts, that I have been hunting for. So this was a bonus!

Then I tackled the hope chest in the livingroom, which took a lot longer then I thought. A box full of unwanted items left this house in a grocery box. Lots of ends of wool, and craft items. I shall bring them to the mission house this afternoon. The chest is cleaned out and everything put in smaller containers in there.

It feels good to have that done. Now I don't feel guilty about sewing today.

Give me a Hole

Give me a hole and stick my head in it!
I get up very early in the morning. Actually at 4am, get the woodstove going, put the dogs out, take care of over 125 animals, come back to the house, hang out last nights laundry and deal with issues of a family in the morning heading all different directions. If I drank coffee, I do not! I would be permentally drunk on the stuff.

Wednesday morning, as every morning went on as this with the exception I was going into the city with Dearest. To save on gas we have been doing this routine now for just about a year. He goes into the office I deal with the folks.

Back track three weeks ago. While I was grocery shopping with my Dat I spied my old girlfriend from high school down one of the aisle. She was a knock-out in high school and was still pretty as ever. My first response was to run up to her and hug her. Its been 30+ years since I saw her. Man we use to spend hours on the phone at night chatting away, lunches playing card games, sitting at high school sporting events. A lot ran through my mind in a few seconds. But Dat needed my help, and instead I dealt with duty rather then want. She was gone. My heart went through my feet.

This week when I got changed into my( 'work at my parents house so I can scrub their kitchen floor') skirt, threw my hair up in a bun, no make-up but thought I looked good enough ( well -anyway !).

In the afternoon on Wednesday I was in Fabricland getting fabric for daughters wedding and who should bump into me with her 13 year old son? The same friend. 

I was demobilized! Mortified.........oh my! What did I look like? I wanted to find a hole and throw my head in it. I smiled and greeted her son, ( the youngest of four boys I am told). Man she looked good for 50! Young and pretty as ever. I felt old and worn. I just had spent 5 hours with my folks, and three hours with barn yard animals. The emotions inside me were near tears. We spoke of our families. She gave her son a glowing report of me in high school............... but that was so many years ago now. I probably seemed like 100 years old to him ( you know how teenagers are about their parents). I just smiled. They were in there looking for wool. I had to chuckle because it was ovious she didn't sew or knit.No wool in this store, just fabric. I asked her what she needed wool for? She said mitts. I directed her to the right store and told her the best wool and what was on sale this week. She is still a space cadet! A pretty space cadet! 

I found out where she works and will go there one day when I'm looking real nice and we'll do lunch together.

In the meanwhile I had a teary session in the car. Getting old gracefully?


Thursday, November 8, 2012

The Selling Note

I was in the city yesterday. Normal routine of caring for my folks. However I got there early and other then cleaning up and groceries there wasn't much to do. My folks were eager to get out after lunch so I took my leave and actually completed that long list of things to do that has been hovering over me for over a month.

One thing I had been wanting to do was replace a string on daughters violin and get both of ours tuned properly.

The fellow I use to go to ,loved music and people. He would replace the string and tell you if you could play him a tune it was half price. Gimmick I know, but he never charged more then the price of the string. Then in return he would play you a tune. It was a jolly trip each time. But he sold out and retired, leaving us with other choices.

I decided to go with the oldest music store in the city yesterday. Not only was the string twice the price, but I was told to put a new tuning foot on my violin ( which is about 75 years old), to the 'tune' of $18 +tax. Then I watched him tune it ( with much complaining because it is an old violin) with a electronic tuner. I have to admit this electronic tuner would save me time and trips in to get my old baby tuned, if I bought one at $20.+tax.He showed me how it worked. Of course I loved it but................

I payed for the $6.00 string and tuning. Will tune my own to my daughters ( I know cheap huh!), and forfid the new gadgets for now.

I'm not sure this is a normal routine of this particular store, to show all the bells and whistles, to make you believe you need these things or a "Christmas you need wish list", after all it is the season!

I'll stick to what I know. Thank-you very much. I'm a cheap scape!

Grocery Challenge Nov 11,2012

Grocery Challenge for the week of Nov 11,2012

Budget for the month $300.00

This shopping trip:

Sobeys
-----------
2 x Lion Chops 6.49 - 50%= 3.23 ( 10 pieces)
Honey Shreddies 3.99
Chicken Tights 6.19 ( 14 pieces)
---------------------------------------------------------------------------
Total 13.40

No Frills
--------------
2 Black Diamond Cheese(300g) @ 2.47 each = 4.94
Family size Multigrain Cheerios 3.49
NN Instant pudding .78
NN peas 2.29
PC chocolate chips (1kg) 6.99
yogurt 3.89 - 3.89c= free
2 x bread @1.87 ea = 3.74
cinnamon bread 1.99
Italian sausages (20) 6.71
banana @.67lb = 1.61
celery 1.47
clementine 3.77
English cucumber .69
mushroom 1.97
green onion .57
box of baby spinach 4.49
8 tomatoes 2.57
-------------------------------------------------------
Total $48.07

Shoppers Drug Mart
2 x 1% milk 4.13 each =8.26
----------------------------------------------
Total $8.26

Dollarama
------------------
3 x semi sweet chocolate squares @2.00 each =6.00
chicken bullion 1.00
--------------------------------------------------
Total $7.00

SuperStore
-------------------
Hot chocolate 3.79
Raspberry tea 2.49
---------------------------------
Total 6.28

Jim's
----------
3x cranberry juice  free
2 cow tongues for the dogs free( yuck!)

Total grocery budget for the month is $300.
Total coupons used this week $3.89
Total spent: $83.01
Total Spent so far :$164.05
Total left to spend for the month: $135.95

This week was a frustrating visit to stores. I shop No Frills because that is where my father with dementia likes to shop. He knows the store. However Sales from Freshco could not be matched at NoFrills because of sizing issues. I found myself doing the math on my phone to figure out weather the deal was better at NF or if I should make another trip ( across the city) to FC. I stuck with NF and different options.

We are eating three vegetarian meals this week verse the two we usually do. One always being soup. I got some vegetarian magazines from the library with some India dishes in it that look really good. I will incorporate this in our home schooling somehow to make it fun.

I went to Superstore to get the ground beef on for 1.98/lb and round roast for 1.98lb . This store is huge,( I rarely go there) but neither item were in stock, so I got rain checks from a lady that shouldn't be working there because she treated me like an alien when I asked for rain checks. Good thing about her lack of knowledge of rain checks is she didn't put a quantity down. I could buy the store out of ground beef with this rain check........as long as it fits the budget! Not having the beef put a damper on my set menu planning for this week. Shall have to dig around for alternatives.

Started to stock up on holiday baking supplies.




Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Frost

A sure sign of November. morning frost as the temperatures dropped to -8C ( 20F) last night. This morning the beauty layed all around us. Well its all how you look at it! Despite the cold air I hung a line full of sheets and towels. The sun came up early and hopefully will remain the whole day.

I am home all day today. Cooking meals for a few days and keeping the woodstove roaring. The sun is pleasant and keeping the house pretty warm.
I have begun a pair of socks for a gentleman friend with large legs, whilst sitting in the sunshine helping with school work this morning.

On Sunday after worship I have always told the kids to hang their clothes up right away so as I do not have to do more ironing. Last night when I was putting the days laundry away I spotted the four year old attempts of being good. Oh! Her dress was hung on a hanger but.....
So were her tights! Good job little one!

Monday, November 5, 2012

Homemaking Monday

A nice sunny but cold day here today. Just above the freezing mark, but seeing the sun was pure bliss.

Right now I am: Finishing up smocking the second nightie for my new granddaughter due in January. Today I was outside for most of the day and when I came inside cleaned out the furnace ducts for that just in case the furnace comes on! Hopefully not. Hopefully the cookstove will keep this big old farmhouse warm. It is to go well below the freezing mark tonight. My old dog is laying here on the kitchen floor, instead of the barn floor.

I am Thinking: That I can't remember where I put the polar sheets for our bed. Would love to have them for tonight but gave up looking for them! I think they are in the suitcase in the sewing room but its a lot of work to get them down. I hope to have more energy in the morning.

On My Reading Pile: A little boring in this department as I need to get to the library. I have a few Vegetarian magazines to give me ideas of meatless meals. .

On My TV( computer): Waiting for God ( a Britsh comedy about old people in a senior home)Some days I can relate to them.

On My menu for this week: Just when one thinks they are organized..... ! Hum lets see what there is in the freezer???

On My to do List: Tomorrow the winter boots have to come out the grainary. Find those winter sheets. Clean out the wooden bench in the kitchen. Strip the beds and wash the sheets and hang them out in the so called (cold) sunshine tomorrow. Make a menu?

What am I working on: Just completed smocking second baby nightie. Am going to start a pair of mens socks out of Aran wool. Never made any with that heavy a weight before. Hope to sew up the nighties this week. Grocery list, so I can make a menu.

Looking Around the House: The house is in good shape. Clean. I am in the process of cleaning out hiding spots and getting rid of items not used, needed or wanted. Simplifing.

From the Camera:
Chochin my rooster. He is missing his female companions as they are now all in the freezer. Ate one tonight ( he doesn't know yet). He has always been a feisty rooster but now thinks I'm his best friend and follows me everywhere.I took this photo while in the kitchen and he is on the window sill, outside.

Friday, November 2, 2012

Grocery Challenge week ending Nov 4/12

No Frills
--------------
Beatrice Yogurt (12) 2.99
Catelli Fettucci 1.47-.75 coupon .72
Dog food   9.98
Oatmeal crisp   3.49
PC ranch dressing   1.97
1kg chocolate chips   6.99
NN pepperoni stick   3.49
1.45kg banana's   2.14
cucumber   .97
.68kg grapes   1.42
.69kg oranges  1.95
box baby spinach 4.49
.40kg tomato   .67
taxes     1.30
--------------------------------------
Total $42.57

Shoppers Drug Mart
----------------------------------
2x 4L of 1% milk   free ( used gift card from last week)


Telford Egg Farm
-------------------------------
30 eggs  $5.75


Jim's
--------
1 whole wheat bread free
1 multi grain bread free
6 whole wheat kaiser buns free
3 sub buns  free
12 whole wheat buns free
Cheese bread$ 2.24
--------------------------------------------
Total $2.24

Taylor Beef Farm
----------------------------
5lbs ground beef $4.79

No Frills
--------------
4x 1kg Kraft Peanut Butter PM FC (3.77each) 15.08
3x 500g Honey PM FC (3.77 each) 11.31
garlic .47
-------------------------------
Total $26.86

Family Budget for November: $300.
Amount spent this week:$82.21
Coupons/ gift cards used $10.75
Amount Left to spend: $217.79
Under  budget by $217.79

This was a grand week as Jim gave me a lot of day old bread, so I didn't have to buy or make any myself. It was a disappointing week as No Frills didn't have five of the items on my list this week. I put them on for next week. Bought enough eggs for the  month and peanut butter and honey till sometime in the new year.

Thursday, November 1, 2012

November 1st

The beginning of November and the beginning of a new challenge for me. To live within our pension budget amount. I must admit it is scary. Some bills came in yesterday a bit higher they the set amount for that column. But I am determined to make this work.

I opened up a bank account yesterday at President Choice Financial. I tried on-line the day before but they wanted a credit card for identification. I don't own one. So I went to the Super Store yesterday after caring for my folks and opened one up. It has free banking and checking and free grocery points when using their bank card. At present we are with Scotiabank and my fees are about $14./month. What made me decided to go PC was when I ordered new cheques last month at the tune of $42. for 250 cheques. I thought never again. So this month I will be fooling around with PC figuring out how it all works, on-line and by telephone, debit ( something I have never used). Then transferring money from one bank to another as the year rolls out. I wasn't sure weather to use PC or ING, but after much reading found there to be little difference. The PC banking is just more convenient.

I have a few projects I want to do this month at the house.

1. give eldest daughter all the un-used storage containers.
2. Clean out sitting bench in kitchen
3. Clean out DVD/book closet in hallway
4. Clean out my hope chest ( where I store my wool/cotton and some pattern books. Really think about what I am keeping.

From the sewing room.
1. Finish baby sweater for new granddaughter ( jan)
2. Make socks for a friend with diabetis and large legs
3. sew up smocked dress for youngest
4. Knit baby botties to match sweater
5. begin smocked dresses for flowergirls for daughters wedding (July)

This should keep me out of trouble ( or into it!) and busy as the dyas get shorter.

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Hurricane Sandy

Wondering how everyone made out after the storm?

We had strong winds all day yesterday. The cows weren't quiet at all, moving this way and that just like the wind. It couldn't make up its mind which way to blow. The barn creaked and cracked with the wind during barn chores, the dogs and cats wanted in the house. They know!

Dearest and I were outside until the daylight left. Him dangling from a two story ladder getting the leaves out the eaves, while I sat at the bottom steadying the ladder. Sometimes my weight is of an advantage!

By 8pm the pelting winds and rain hit every window. I closed the shades in the windows to keep the thought out. The wind coming from the east sounded like a train coming across the farm.

Dearest had gone to the city to play hockey and one of my daughters to work. I called her at work at 11pm to tell her to be careful of tree limbs on route home. She said if it were terribly bad she would sleep at my folks, but would text me to let me know. The power had gone out at work and she was on back up generator.

Dearest was home 12:30pm. The brunt of the storm. He said all was good until he came up our concession. Trees where on the road. He moved them to the side, so they were small trees. Daughter home 2:15am, by then the wind was pretty normal. I went to sleep then and up at 4:30am this morning feeling it was already warmer out.

After morning barn chores, I cleared the lane way and branches off the road. Could hear chain saws on the concession. Township work crews at work.

The sun is trying to come through. Weather network says it won't. Rain on the way. I'm okay with that. Hope to get some cooking done, and some cleaning.

Monday, October 29, 2012

Mission Accomplished

It is done. All my set projects for October. Amen!

I worked for 5 1/2 hours today under the back stairs. Vacuumed each and ever book under there and decided what to do with each one. There are still many there, classicals and ones of interest to everyone. But bags of stuff went out of here. Many to 'Friends of the Library'. One bag to donations and a full canvas bag ready to go to a home school family of boys. Books on rocks, fish and space.

I found a few photo albums. Going through them. Many from the last 1980's. Memories. But I noticed many of the pictures were the same as those in the cottage journal books ( when we owned a cottage) and though to tare the pictures out and send them to designated child. It took over an hour but I was down to one photo album instead of four. I was thrilled about this. Funny how when you are young all this is precious to you but as you get older it becomes stuff.

Found daughters guitar case. Wonder if she still has her guitar?

At the very back of this crawl space are two tall tower ,plastic container shelving units on wheels. These have been my sewing cabinets for over 20 years. One had five drawers and held my patterns. Well I went through them with a cheerful eye and thought deeply about what to keep and what to get rid of. I am happy with my decisions and am down to two drawers of very practical and often made outfits. The teenage patterns are bagged for my friend who has a very tall....I mean VERY tall daughter. They like to sew and I am sure she will enjoy some of these. The rest I packaged for donation.

The second tower had threads, overcast thread, binding, embroidery, quilting supplies. The problem with this unit was the amount of given to me, stuff that was stached in there. I had a friend who was a missionary and moved to Mexico. She had brought bags of sewing supplies to me many years ago now. I never went through it but stuffed it in these drawers. Then my folks closed up their sewing machine shop and I took one of each colour of thread and many sewing notions before the auction. Today was the day! I removed lots of stuff. Put it in baggies and sent it off with daughter to the missionary center. Someone will take a bag of zippers, or seam binding etc.

I am now down to one tower of sewing supplies/patterns. The second one I will give to eldest daughter to put the baby items in. It is handy because it is on wheels. She can cart it where ever she wants.

The whole area is vacuumed, and scrubbed down. I ahd to put books abck on shelves, but it will be easy to remove anything when Dearest decides to insulate this area.

Now I am tired!

Preemie Nightie

I have a real busy day here today. I have decided to book two days off in a row to do nothing but what needs doing here. I am not leaving the farm for anything ( except an emergency). It is the end of the month and I promised myself two projects would be completed by October 31st. One the cleaning of the kitchen cupboards which I finished last week. The second, under the back staircase. This is where the homeschooling books are kept, along with other reading material, magazines, photo albums and tucked way in the back is two plastic drawer sets with my threads, machine needles, patterns and knitting needles and such. Today it gets cleaning out. The shelves dismantled as Dearest wants to insulate that wall. It is the north wall, and is cold in the winter. The small downstairs bathroom is off this space and is pretty cold to sit at in the winter. I also want to make turkey pot pie and turkey loaf today for later this week. I have help today as the 21 year old is home until 3pm. So either she can help with schoolwork or cleaning. I'll let her pick.
Last night I pleated two preemie nighties for daughters third child due in January but we are told will be early. My daughter is sending a hormonal signal that is telling her body it is time. But she is only 26 1/2 weeks along. the doctors have told her to be prepared. In the meanwhile she is freaking because she had big babies before and has nothing small. I thought to comfort her with two preemie nighties, smocked.

Off to work!

Sunday, October 28, 2012

Grocery Challenge October 28/12

My grocery spending for this week ( not good)

Foodland:
2 x Milk @ 3.93 each $7.86 (used rain checks from last week)

Independent:
6 x 454g I can't believe its not butter @ 1.00 each, $6.00

No Frills:
yogurt (12) $ 2.88
cat food (4kg) $6.98
cheese (500g) $3.88
dog food (18kg)$9.98
2 x Demster bread @ 1.88 each $3.76 less coupon for $1.00 = 2.76
pork loin (7 pieces @ 30% off) $3.62
broccoli $.88
English cucumber $.97
3lbs oranges $2.88
2 tomatoes $.90

Abatoir:
24 hens processed $27.93

Budget $300.00
Total what spent this month: $374.88
coupons this week: $1.00
Total this week: $77.52
Total Over: $74.88

I have to admit I was a little scared this week shopping. I knew I would be over my set amount because of the chickens being dressed. That said I have 24 chickens in my freezer for the winter, which is really comforting to know. I also have 10 tubs of maragine in the freezer for baking. The one item I was willing to go $40.00 bucks on this week was Kraft Peanut butter which was on sale at a fantistic low price of $3.88L but I priced matched everywhere and there was NO peanut butter to be found.

This month I am over by $77.88!

Thursday, October 25, 2012

Finishing

They weather network was calling for a fantastic warm sunny day today. I put all my wash from the hamper , though the machine last night and after morning chores, went to hang the laundry on the line outside. Both lines full, still dark outside.

Last night I pulled a turkey from the freezer. A small 5kg one. Enough for a few meals that I won't have to dream up over the weekend. Made stuffing and am at present cooking the bird.

Dearest had some secretarial work that needed doing. So while helping with school work I did this work for him. It took over 2 hours but it is all done now. He will be pleased and I happy he isn't spending inside all day tomorrow pondering over it all.

As I was doing this  bookwork it poured out. I was beside myself. Two lines of laundry outside and all sopping wet! But by noon hour the sun shone through. Everyone is outside now raking leaves. There are many more to fall, but a good start for the garden. Today's load will go into the raspberry patch. Hopefully a dozen wheel burrow loads worth.
Yesterday in the city I bought two meters of flannel in baby pink. One plain, one with floral to smock baby nighties for my new granddaughter. They were $4.00/meter. We have been told to expect a preemie, as my daughter will almost 100% not go full term. Finding doll size clothing is difficult in our city.I need to finish the layette I am making first, but somehow a new project seems more fun at this point.

I have one more kitchen cupboard to clean out. The one that houses the plastic containers and my large kitchen appliances. Really not looking forward to this one. I hate matching the plastic containers, but I am admit I am going to do it today.

Joke on me this morning. I still have my rooster, called Chochi. But when I went to let him out this morning, for some reason I looked in the rafters and there was a hen sitting. The one I call"Scary Cat" because she never went with the flock. Guess she gave the last laugh at me, being scared saved her life. Guess I still have chickens! All my other hens are names after Jane Austen characters. Don't know why? I can just see dinner conversations in the future. "Well mom is this Eleanor we are eating?" Kids!!! 

Tara; on my husbands retiring. First we didn't expect to have a young family at our age. Our plan when we got married was to retire at 55. We will be able to at 57 with a partial pension. I have decided that 2013 we will be living on the partial pension and see how we do. If we can't accomplish this a move will be in the making. Farms sell at prime right now. I can't say they will in the future. However I have yet to loose money on selling property. I have spent this month fine tuning the budget. It is so scary to think at 51 you still have to worry about such issues. It is like worrying about getting wrinkles. No one wants them but it a reality. My scariness is the though I 'might' have to leave my little piece of Paradise here on the farm. However Dearest has assured me he won't be moving into the city if the time comes. This is of great comfort because it would depress me severely. Our children at home have voiced the same opinion. It helps to know they share my values.

Well best get at those cupboards and outside to enjoy this day.

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Never Dull

First I want to say that my grocery list yesterday was part of the Canadian Budget Binder ( web site on side bar) challenge. My computer would not allow me to type that bit of information in. Once I have saved, that's it, no more information can be had.

It is to keep me focused on my grocery spending. I do all my budgeting on my Google Drive. Everytime I purchase something , that night it goes on the spreadsheet. Groceries and gas are the two categories that make or break it for the budget. So this year, with the exception of our PEI trip, in which we cooked our own food, the prices there were way too high compared to Ontario and broke my budget for September. From January to September I went over grocery budget five months. However only once by a significant amount. My goal it to try and get at least half the year under $300. and re-assess our budget for 2013. In 6 years Dearest will be retiring. I need to work out how we will live on less income. He will be 57 years old! No old age yet.

This morning after barn chores I collected my hens , boxed them and brought them to the abatoir ( a fancy French name for slaughter). I will pick them up Friday, frozen ready for our freezer. This should last us until spring, when I will once again have a wanting for new hens. These girls were two years old now and their eggs were getting thin, as they have aged. After two most do not produce well anymore. I didn't want to pay for feed throughout the winter. One of my simplifing ,was to put them in the freezer.

Once they were gone I got right to work. My fridge is near empty now. Good time to clean it out. I have done that this morning, putting any old in the dogs dish for supper. There was hardly anything for them this time, just empting of some jars.I washed the whole fridge out. So that's clean. I moved on to the cupboards again. These ones hold large items. Bowls, soup pots etc. So they don't take as much time as the food cupboards did. However I had purchased from the Dollarstore some rubberized cupboard liners last year, and I am removing it back down to the wood. After awhile the rubber sticks to cups that have just been washed. Every time I take a cup out the cupboard I have to wipe the rim so as not to have blue rubber on it. In the food cupboard sticky honey and molasses made it a mess. An experiement I will not be doing again. Mom has it in her cupboards and I thought it was nice, but she doesn't have kids that don't look where they put things, and spill everywhere.

Dearest brought the German Shepard in last night. He had done a dump in the kitchen on the braided mat, which is now outside in the rain. I shall have to scrub it and somehow in this rainy weather dry it.

Son-in-law, cut his finger right down to the bone last night. My daughter unable to deal with cleaning it, he came here, bleeding all over the kitchen and downstairs bathroom. I cleaned and cared for the wound. Once cleaned we could see it did not require stitches. But the mess in my house. Let alone all the camping gear, and laundry from camping. My kitchen could pass as a mens locker room without a blink of an eye. Hockey gear dring by the woodstove!!! Makes me want to leave.

Anyway daughter and family arrive 5 minutes before supper, so I invited them to stay ( I think they planned it that way!). All the extra dishes and last minute thinking of how to strtch this meal. Thank goodness the garden still has spinach and lettuce. We managed.

Well break time over. Best clean out those cupboards.

Monday, October 22, 2012

Grocery Challenge October 21/12

Family of seven, two adults ( parents) 25yrs, 21yrs, 16 yrs,4 yrs, 3yrs,2 dogs and 2 cats, one income.
Budget of $300./month
This week:
No Frills
———-
Beatrice yogurt 2.99
Cheese strings 4.44
frosted flakes 2.99 ( price match Sobeys)
brown sugar (1kg)4.27
icing sugar (.5kg) 1.68
bird seed 5.88 ( for my chickens due to slaughter this week)
2 cans black beans (.89 each) 1.78
4 lbs ground beef ( 1.99lb) 7.96
banana 1.79kg 1.84
taxes 1.28
Total 35.11
Bulk Barn
———–
icing sugar .510kg 1.22
chocolate squares .120kg 1.38
chocolate chips .510kg 4.77
candy .030 .21
tea 3.19
coupon -3.00
Total 7.80
From Jim’s
—————
cheese bread free
bag of begals free
sub buns (3) free
3 chocolate bars free
Foodland
————
2 bags of milk 3.96 each 7.92
60lbs of ‘ not for human consumption’ meat for dogs free
10 lbs of onions ( 4 were bad) free
3 grapefruits free
Budget: $300.
total grocery spent for the month :$297.40
total coupons used this week :$3.00
total spent this week:$50.83
total under :$2.60
Total left to spend :$2.60
When I bought my milk at Foodland they did not have the advertised milk in store, but a different brand instead. I asked for a rain check for the advertised special and they gave them to me, enough for 4 bags.
This week my husband went camping. he needed some special foods. I just got him cheese strings and baked the rest. Saved a bundle.
I will be over this month. Too many good specials for the pantry at the stores this week, chickens go under the knife.
However garden still producing root veggies, cold cellar and larder are full.

Friday, October 19, 2012

I have "new" boots!

Took the younger children and teenagers friend from the Frankford area down to Belleville for the day of shopping and just doing something different. We made a picnic lunch and snacks before leaving. The weather was a nice fallish. Warmer weather at present but the sun only decided to peek through now and again.

Our first stop was Value Village ( new-to-you shop). The Belleville one is bigger and better priced then in our near by city. My friend tells me this is because of the Sears Warehouse there which keeps the prices lower. I was disorientated in there at first because the isles are very long and narrow. Hard to get a cart with kids in down the aisles. Once I got going it was okay. I really am out of my comfort zone shopping.

We were looking for a fancy dress for the teenagers for there formal dance tomorrow night. It didn't take my daughter long to find two dresses. Both look really good on her. I made her decided and she went with the more expensive one at $12.99. It is a 1940 style and she is going to put her (heavy) hair up and wear red lipstick. Oh the dress is red!

I was looking at winter coats for the youngest as the zipper has gone on hers and we all know how long it takes to fix that? Well in case you don't know, an hour to tear the zipper out and about an hour to put  a new one in....if all goes well. Then the cost of a new zipper. I used jacket was the solution, but there was none her size. Tons for the next size up!
Then I found the shoe department. What I didn't expect to find were all the boots! The ones on the left are Tender Tootsies. I got them for $9.99. They have never been worn. Still have the stickers on the bottom, untouched. perfect for shopping in the snowy weather. The tall ones I had to chew my lips over. I liked them but did I need two pair of boots. These are not 'keep your feet warm' boots, but stylish under my many kilts! They have been used but hardly. I paid $14.99 for them. Now that I have them home I am thrilled with my purchases. I had banked $100. for new boots and got two pair for $25.00.

Feeling good I bought the little ones a game for $5. and teenager clip on earrings which cost as much as the dress. She will look adorable.

Just had to share my excitement.

organized

I worked hard today inside the house and my eyes see the difference.

I was so happy to have the food cupboards cleaned out. It had been bothering me since August. I just have been too busy. Making an appointment to get them cleaned out worked fantastic.
I have the first cupboard done in about 45 minutes. It seemed to go quickly. Each Tupperware container washed clean. My suggestion if you use any sort of plastic to store food is NOT to have a light coloured lid! Mine are pink and the cocoa and chocolate chip containers were so dirty as they stain terribly over time. Lots of Baking Soda on them.

All the containers are now restocked from the cold cellar supply. I did get rid of a few items. Paraffin Wax with the price tag of .69 a large box. Don't use this for canning anymore so it went. There was a near full box of bran flakes that I couldn't tell if bugs had gotten into or not, so I fed it to the chickens. And some sugar free Jello daughter bought on sale not seeing it was sugar free. I brought it to the Food Bank. We are allergic to Aspartame.

In total it took me close to three hours to clean, and move around. My cook books needed some overhauling as well. I removed recipes I have never made and have made my mind up I never will.

Tonight I cleaned all the towels and rags I uses.

This afternoon I went through our file cabinet which is bursting every time I open it. Dearest always looks after the financial stuff, I am just the book keeper. Well we missed a retirement savings roll over in April and the financial institution gave him what I think is a bad return when they rolled it over.  My frustration is that this institution never send you anything as a reminder. I wanted to make sure that this doesn't happen again. So I went in the file. What a disaster. It is all just shoved in the file with tons of un-needed papers attached. I went through this pile and must have burned at least 100 pages of non-information stuff. I stapled by year in order of the year and when they came in the mail. Amazing enough not one was missing! Guess he does have a system??? Perhaps I ruined it? I kept the last seven years in a current file and the remains I put in a Rubbermaid container in the basement. We will never need something from 1995, but he would want to see it at some time.

This took hours. But it is neat and clean and organized, easy to find. I then posted the due dates of investments on the 2013 calendar three weeks before the investment comes due. Gives us time to see what we want to do with it.

I have never bought a calendar before. I did this year from Staples for about $10. It is longer then most and a handy wire hang up so I don't have to use a clothes peg by March to keep the previous month up on the hook. It has lots of room to write on in each square. So today I marked dentist appointments and eye appointments etc on this calender.

Quiet night at home. Ate leftovers and watched a DVD from the library while knitting. Enjoyed my so called 'me day'.

Thursday, October 18, 2012

Am Around

I have been all over the place this past week and have not had much time to myself. Today I "booked" me time and everyone knows it. I need it before  I break. My me time however is not really me time, but time to try and accomplish one of the two things I wanted done by October 31. Clean out the kitchen cupboards!

I began it one night after do dishes. I pulled my whole spice drawer out, washed all the containers and the drawer, put the spices I need to refill on my phone memo pad, and refilled the drawer. That little bit made me feel really good.

Today I am going to tackle the three food cupboards. I have  pretty much everything in Tupperware ( country mice situation). So it is a matter of taking out the containers, washing them all down, washing the cupboards. Re-filling what needs doing, and plucking what I will need in the next month into the phone.

The phone is handy for this. I have a running list of items I am getting low on so if there is room in my weekly budget for one or two of these items I  can get it.

Dearest and boy have gone interior camping this morning at Algonquin Provincial Park. there will be a group of them meeting up there. It is a fishing, guy thing weekend. They do it twice a year and I get fish in the freezer to boot. Good deal, because when they are gone I don't cook! So it is kind of a 'me time'.

I said last week I would share my knitting projects. The computer is a Lenix System and it doesn't seem to like putting pictures on blogger anymore. Hopefully today it will work.
It is made with 4ply fingering wool. A new born size for a friend due mid-January. The pattern is from Patons Baby be Good booklet,(1989). the wool was given to me from a friend who bought it 14 years ago when her third child, first daughter was born. She bought a lot of wool then but with three kids under four never had time to knit anything and now 14 years later still had the wool, and handed it over to me. I was grateful for it. the buttons on the neckline I got from my mom' s stash. So free to make sweater, only my time.
This is the back of a layette set for baby size 6 months. Same pattern book and same wool weight. Wool Called Bernat Lollipop, given by the same friend. This will be for my new granddaughter due in January but wanting to appear already. My daughter is in and out the hospital the last few days having steroid shots to keep the baby's lungs well so if she does come at 25 weeks her lungs will be able to breath well. Good news about this yesterday, as the baby has settled down and daughter other then side effects of the steroids ( not sleeping) has also calmed down.Daughter is now allowed to do anything for three weeks. Yah right with a 4 year old and 3 year old at home? Anyway my daughter has large babies, so no use making the first size.

The leaves are really starting to fall here. It is beautiful out today. laundry on the line. I hope to work up the garden this afternoon. Still getting daily root crops out of the garden. A good thing.

Tomorrow the little ones and teenager travel to Belleville to do some girlie things ( shopping). I still need to get winter boots. Other then that just something special for the teenager, the hard one to buy for. On route home we are picking up her friend as they both have been invited to a formal dance Saturday night. Guess who gets to drive them there and stick around to drive them home? Wonder, should I bring my knitting?

Dat turned 84 yesterday and was quite coherent. I brought his car to a dealership yesterday before having to get a new license sticker and e-test. the car has only 62,000km on it. It will sell fast.

I finally finished the books for the year. ( Sep 30) We are trying to live on less as we retire in 6 1/2 years and will have to live on less for 10 years before CPP kicks in. I see where I need to make some changes in our everyday living. This is always a good exercise for me. Opens my eyes to new ideas and changes. You shall start to see these changes on this blog as I type about them as the weeks go on.

Enough procrastination. On with the cupboards.


Saturday, October 13, 2012

Cold and Wet

It is damp in the house today as the dampness seeps through my bones. I really dislike these shorter days. Seems I just get into something and it is dark out.

This past week I went looking for winter boots. Dress boots for under my skirts that keep my feet warm. It would appear people do not walk out in cold snowy conditions anymore.All the boots I could find are fancy dress boots with enough warmth for a fall dry day. I was so put out. Near tears. My old ones have holes in them and I already wore them one winter with milk bags in them to keep my feet dry.

Sears had a good special on dress shirts which Dearest needs badly. I am afraid I have been putting buying these for too long. But if my dearest of friend didn't call me and say she has a bag of dress shirts that the arms length does not fit her (very tall) husband. There were 14 dress shirts in that bag ( she is a shopaholic). I was so thrilled to get this bag. Washed them all and today ironed them. I didn't have to buy any and these shirts are like new. Thrilled.

I wish to sew, but have too many knitting projects on the go right now. Have to finish them first. Shall show them next week.

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Food Wastage

I often babysit for my eldest daughter for free. It can be one of the hardest things I do in the week as the combination of our children exhuasts me. However the payment in general in great.

Today I was with the girls at their house all day because they are sick. Normally I would have them here which is easier for me, but I didn't need the sickness back in the house.

Daughter works in produce at the local grocery store.

My payment today..about 60 pounds of beef, chicken, turkey and sausages stated for the dumpster. I have beef frying on the cookstove as I type and chicken in the cookstove baking for dog food. Some of this meat is recall and must be handled with great care ( gloves) and cooked well. But I'm up to this challenge to feed my beasts.

Most other days it comes it forms of browning banana's, broken bags of grapefruit or oranges, fruit and vegetables not so pleasing to the eye but still 80% good for eating.

It bothered me today, as Dearest and I seperated the meat tonight that there is so much waste in our society. And that food banks are filled with fast easy to cook, high calorie foods.

My thought anyway.

Monday, October 8, 2012

Fall Mode

Long weekend is over now. Plans that were to happen tomorrow have faded away sparing up time to get down to some real work. My goal for October is to clean the kitchen cupboards and rid of items I do not need or want. I am sure a box will come out of them. Then to head under the main floor stairs and clean out my sewing patterns, books, photo albums and needlework. I am hoping to make good progress and get rid of items I have had over 5 years and have not touched. Then I hope to insulate the north wall under the stairs with blue insulation boards to help with the heating.

The woodstove came on last night, as the temperatures dipped below the freezing mark. No snow though! However I did have to scrap frost off the wind shield in the morning.

So this means a clean-up of the garden now. Anything damaged by frost will have to go to the chickens who will be leaving here in a weeks time for the freezer.

Friday, October 5, 2012

Fall Happenings

m
Fall colours are alive right now.
Simply spectacular!
breath taking!
I think the hight of the season.
I am in awe.

My garden is still producing, mostly rot vegetables right now. The pantry is full, the upstairs cupboard filled, there is little I am in want of.

The 21 year old has a new job, from 3:30pm to anywhere near 3am. This means a full adjustment of habits around the house here. I normally do my noicy housework first thing in the morning when I have energy, but it is all done now after she has left for work and the toddler has completed her nap. I am having to practise patience here. Its hard. I hate not vacuuming until near supper hour, but I must allow her to sleep.

School is coking along very well here. The 16 year old is well into her courses and is ahead of the game as of yesterday. the four year old is doing grade 1 work now. Enjoying her spelling lists and reading simple words.

Dearest is now having to work an extra day a week. Yet another adjustment for all of us. I have come to rely on him being home more and find myself having to replace his work on those days. Hence my lack of presence here.
This is Thanksgiving weekend here. Where I live this is fall fair weekend, when our near by village hosts the largest agricultural fair in the province. However Thanksgiving weekend is a week early this year and we will be away. I had items to put in the fair, but shall give them as the gifts they were intended for, without ribbons.





Friday, September 28, 2012

Fall Progress

Took my camera outside and the batteries were dead. With the kids at my heels all morning I thought better then to go in and get batteries....somewhere upstairs.

The little ones were painting rocks on the front porch in the sun this morning. It is 16C out, but a lot warmer in the sunshine. In the meanwhile I started the clear out the garden. The first were the beets. I have five rows left. I removed one row for this week. They will do well in the ground for a spell yet. However I will mention we had frost this morning. I am planning meals around the garden for the next two weeks or so. My freezer is full so we will be eating fresh and little meat to use up the garden.

The raspberries are in full swing right now. No use bringing them in as the little ones get hungry ( always) and go down and nibble away on the raspberries.

Dearest came in from a walk in the fields last night ( full moon) with two puffballs.(http://www.mssf.org/cookbook/puffballs.html) which I am now cutting up, and cooking with onions and garlic and freezing, in an already stuffed freezer in small portions.

I have mending to do today. Mostly elastics in the smallest ones pants. They haven't lasted from the last child. And Dearest sleeping bag before he goes camping in three weeks time. He wrecked the zipper in this expensive bag last year. That is his fourth and I informed him last sleeping bag he will own. They are costing us a fortune because he doesn't know how to use a zipper properly. You slide down , not upward! He breaks zippers on everything. His mom never instructed his right I guess. Thank goodness for Velcro. That is how I am going to repair the sleeping bag. he will have to live with it.

Monday, September 24, 2012

PEI part three

Computer problems yesterday wouldn't let me type in where I wanted so only pictures.
Avonlea Village
Staying in PEI is not expensive. Our cabin cost us $60./night and we did our own cooking. groceries on the other hand was more expensive then I am use to, but really I am so use to a pantry which I didn't have here. We ate very basic meals and soup at noon hour. Fish is very cheap there. What I pay $6.99 for was $2.99 a package there. I thought apples would be cheaper because they are grown there and potatoes, but Ontario potatoes here are half the price they pay. I bought all our fresh goods at road end farm stands. At least the farmer gets the full profit that way. We had some lovely blueberry honey while there. I went back to get some before returning home, but it was all gone.

We spent most of our time on the east side of the island. But the first Friday we went to Delway and Cavendish area. We did not go to Anne of Green Gables because I know for a fact it is not the original home, which was burnt to the ground. There were 16 buses there from the states. A money trap!
We did go to Avonlea, which is not to be confused with the set which is for the greater part in Kitchener Ontario. WE heard beautiful island music there and saw how the fish and open an oyster. None of us brave enough to eat one! Then we drove up the west coast.
West side of the Island
 The beaches there were of red sand. But ATV's had driven down them and there was broken glass etc. Not a pretty site. the east coast was so clean. We slept in the motel there that night and I caught this cold. Oh in Alberton you have to eat at the bakery and coffee shop. Don't worry only two eateries there. The most excellent soup and homemade buns. Full pies for $4.00. Wonderful food.
North Point Lighthouse
The Saturday morning we went to the very North Cape of the island. It had rained a little throughout the night. Rain brings on the smell from the sea creatures. Smells like a septic system opening up. I found hard to get use to. It was really bad this morning. But on the Cape one could go to the other side of the island and there no smell. There is a really nice nature trail with lots of information about the sea life there, right at the north point.
Lobster fishing off the north point
windmills at north point
From there we headed back south on the west side of the island. It was a pleasant day. We wanted to rent a cottage on this side of the island for three days but no one would rent or rent only by the week. One thing you have to understand is the island basically tourist wise closes Labour Day weekend.
Home of Stopin Tom a Canadian Idol in folk music
A John Deere wedding in a small town
We landed out driving a long distance to Summerside to a motel. there are many there, all about $69./night for two bedroom, kitchenette and full bath. We tried the pool. Too cold!

Going to Worship throughout the week and on Sunday was a real blessing to us all. meeting new ones and learning life on the island. This particular Sunday was really windy. Not cold out but the wind dropped the temperature a lot. Dearest wanted KFC ( yuck) so we did and went to a park to eat. National parks were all still opened but we learned that Provincial ones were all closed. This park was closed, but I didn't want KFC mess on the clothes. So we ducked behind trees and got changed and ate lunch rather quickly I will add at this park.
Confederation bridge from the park
Got back in the car and called the lady we rented the cottage from on the east side and begged if we could have it again for the remains of our trip. She said she would love to have us. case solved. I wasn't budging from this cottage for the remains of the trip. Dearest can hunt around but i was tired not knowing where I was going to sleep next. Besides a felt a cold coming on.
house for sale $7.8 million

We had some cool nights, but cooking in the cottages and warm showers seemed to warm them up quite nicely. No heat was required but the days if not too windy were perfect. Still bathing suit on the beach weather ( in the afternoon). Dearest loves to look at real estate. A hobby of his, ( keeps us in the poor house- property poor) This little baby was walking distance from our cottage going for $7.8 million!!! The people are from the states and come up two weeks in the year. My landlady tells us they loose about a foot of land a year to erosion. The locals chuckle about this place and say it will be in the ocean in about 20 years. Their beach wasn't even nice.
whale watching
We saw whales and seals the last two days we were on the beach. The wind was coming off the land and the water was calm. We walked about 10km a day on the beaches, Dearest often more.

The price of gas when we left home was $120.9/liter, it had been cheaper in the states, New Brunswick was $129.9/liter and PEI was $125./liter. While we were there prices jumped to $133.2/liter in PEI, but what a shock when we crossed the bridge to New Brunswick it was $140./liter. I have never see it that high. In Quebec on route home $144.6/ liter!! Today here at home $118.2/liter. Sometimes home is the best place.
Confederation bridge from New Brunswick side






Sunday, September 23, 2012

PEI part two


On the beach where we stayed collecting shells

Sand dunes
Me taking a walk down the beach " alone!"
Dalway also known on Road to Avonlea as Whitesands hotel

Inside Dalway, on Cavandish Shores