Thursday, June 12, 2014

The Bug Story

So...I have to tell you the Bug Story.

As you may have guessed, I am an avid gardener.   I just love to nurture along all the little plants that I seed in and the seedlings, as well.   I bought a coleus to use in one of the big black urns on my front step.  However, I had intended to buy two so they would sort of match.  I forgot.  Sometimes, I just get distracted by all the choices at the local nurseries and forget what I was supposed to purchase.

Anyway, I was on eBrandon, in the classified section, when I noticed a local fellow was selling ones similiar to mine for only 50cents a plant or 3/$1.00 which sure beat the $3.00 I had paid for the other one.  Not one to pass on a good deal, I contacted the very nice fellow and later in the evening went over to pick up my new plants.  He had a lovely selection of various colours of coleus and the most amazing collection of hostas.  He gave me a tour of his beautiful and interesting backyard.  It was most impressive and very exciting to see what he had done with it.  As we chatted, he showed me one particular hosta that grew incredibly huge that he had in the front yard.  We talked about the local deer problem and other gardening issues while standing in his immaculate front yard. It was one of the loveliest front yards I had ever seen!

Unfortunately, as we talked the mosquitoes and bugs were starting to present themselves full-force!  I had the misfortune to swallow one and choked and sputtered clumsily, much to my embarrassment.  I finally was able to finish my conversation and head home.  I drove down the street, stopped at the stop sign and turned right onto the larger main road.  There was only a little traffic as it was getting later in the evening.  About a half a block after turning, I realized that something was crawling inside my throat around my epiglottis!   I started to cough and was soon gagging.  This very quickly turned to me starting to feel like puking!  I put my hand in front of my face just as I started to throw up.  As I held the vomit in my hand against my face, I was trying to slow down and pull off the road.  I finally stopped and shut off the van, all the while gagging and continuing to try not to throw up more or drop what was in my hand.  I realized that I couldn't open the door with my left hand and had to struggle to open it with my right-all while still choking back vomit.  I finally got it open and still couldn't get out!  I had my seatbelt to still contend with!  Groan.  By now, I am in full heaving and vomit is starting to come up.  I finally stepped out of my van just as everything decided to spew from me.  I got the door of my van, I got my clothes, and the road all full force! 

After my very ungraceful exit and performance outside the van, I cleaned up the best I could and headed home.  After re-cleaning the van, I walked into the house.  My hubby took one look at my vomit covered outfit and face and asked what happened! I laughed, explained it to him and told him that "The upside is that I got rid of that bug!"

Thursday, April 3, 2014


As you may or may not know, I love making bread.  And, I love sharing the bread I make.  Most people love receiving homemade bread because it is something they would never make for themselves. A lot of my friends can't understand how I can work full-time and cook everything from scratch - well almost everything. 

When I run out of bread I would rather just make a loaf or two than run out and buy it at the store - especially this winter with all the exceptionally cold temperatures. It takes me about 5 minutes to get the bread to the first rise, a couple minutes to knock it down when it is complete and put it in pans for a second rise.  Then it is into the oven for 20 or so minutes. The house smells divine as the bread bakes and warms up the house a wee bit more.  I mess up a bowl, a fork, and a couple bread pans.  A part of me asks - what is so hard about that?  while another part of me completely understands how a person with no bread baking experience could be overwhelmed by it. 

 Recently, there has been a push on for people to eat less gluten, whether they are allergic/sensitive to it or not.  I realize that allergies are serious and that people have issues with regards to the gluten but many who are going gluten free are just jumping on the bandwagon hoping it will improve their lot in life.  These are the individuals  that makes the breadmaker in me sigh.


A is for AAArgh!

I am a winter person.  I love winter.  I like it when it is cold cold - even the -40C cold.  My favourite winter temperatures are around -15 to -20C.  The roads are not icy, it is still warm enough that you can do things, and cold enough that you dress for the cold.  

This winter has me discombobulated though.  It got cold cold right off the hop in mid-November and has only recently made it to around -20C at night and sometimes even made it up to 0C during the day.  This warming has only happened in the past week or so though.  The rest of the winter has been uniformly cold with wind chills in the lower -50C range for the most part.  (These temperatures make -20C seem like a nice warm spring day!) 

Now, when it gets down in temperature, heating bills go conversely upwards.  (what's with that anyway?)  As we live in an older 2x4 construction home from the late 60's, the cold drops off the walls and the house just doesn't really get cozy, especially our family room addition.  Just on a hunch (cold feet, cold me) I put a thermometer on the floor.  It was cold - about 12C.  Not pleasant at all. The room temperature was about 16.5C before we put on the gas fireplace, that despite the house temperature being set at 22C.  Sigh.

This year spring is late - we still have a couple to three feet of snow on the ground still.  The roads are still covered in ice and snow except for a few main thoroughfares and it is still snowing today!! My "I love winter" person is slowly becoming an "I am tired of winter" person.  Never thought I would see the day that would happen!