Wednesday, August 17, 2016

Haven Living

It is mid-week here in the Midwest of Southern Ontario. After enjoying a couple of weeks of staying up later and sleeping in later I seem to have found a new ‘nitch’ for my slumber habits.

I’m like everyone else, I’m sure, in that I enjoy the perfect combination of a perfect day. Not too hot, not too wet, not too dry, not too cold. We have had a lot of all of these…well, except for the ‘too wet’. What a dry summer it has been! Finally, over the last 3 days we have got much of the needed rain in our area. Even this morning I woke up to the steady hum on the roof.

way below normal marsh level
The ponds and marshes around our Ridge have experienced a dry spell to the likes we have not yet seen. Completely dried up areas and it is sad to see.                                    
Turtle log resting on dry land
this morning after 4 days of rain

Our pond so low there is almost a 'beach'!

today, filled back up. Yay!

Today I can look out and see the same areas looking the way they used to,

 providing the turtles and frogs, ducks and birds a place to bathe and swim.
Turtle enjoying the log
Yertle, wondering how long I'm going to stand here

When I heard the large rustle at the ponds edge I'm glad I had my camera
with the 300mm zoom lens

Even thorny old thistles can be pretty
enough to attract the bumblebees

Can't recall seeing a male oriole before

He was playing a game of cat and mouse until I got my camera out.
then he was kind enough to pose for me a few times!

I have been lucky in the last week to catch the take-off of a heron or marsh harrier, the slow ascent of a large turtle (snapper?) a couple of muskrats and the most beautiful Baltimore oriole I’ve ever seen!

I love the early mornings, the stillness of the trees, the quiet of the land and often go out early for my walk. I find myself in bed by 10 lately and up at 6:30 or 7. I don’t always see the sunrise to the east now because of the car shelter we have put up behind our Suite but at sunset, I can’t get enough of these breath taking views to the west.
car shelter out the back window blocking my sunrise view

but nothing stops me from snapping the gorgeous sunsets

night after night, the bonus of country living on a hill....
er, I mean ridge
Each picture I snap with my Canon DSLR is different and until I get them downloaded, I don’t realize how well (or not) the picture has transferred to my hard drive. My sister says that it is important to remember that as great as it is to capture such moments, whether it be wildlife or a still photo, we should never dismiss the absolute joy of the actual memory itself, in real life. Such a philosopher!

The rain has temporarily stopped and I although I am not dressed for an outdoor walk, I’m longing to get outside. When I do get up early like this, my goal is to grab some lounge clothes as quickly and quietly as possible and tiptoe out of the bedroom. The steady breathing of my slumber mate tells me that he was up well beyond my early bedtime. I totally understand that Bill is not enjoying a restless sleep though, unlike me he is usually up once through the night for his own purpose and then once again around 6 am to let Clemson out for his. I’m happy he can at least go back to sleep after such disturbances.

Morning setup
So, on these days, I come to the kitchen, make a tea laden with coconut oil and cream and catch up on the news of my friends. I visit blogs and Facebook and check emails.

We love our Keurig cupboard almost as much as we love
our Keurig. It is fuss free and quick!
On the rainy days we’ve had over the period of the last 5 days, it is a good time to do ‘inside’ things. I’m sure all of you full timers know exactly what that entails. For some it could be watching tv and others, like us newbies, we still have a certain amount of organizing to do.

So, Bill set to work going through the file drawer, purging and burning old files and I managed to find 2 grocery bags of summer tops that I haven’t touched since the hot weather hit. That tells me already that I didn’t need them……. plus, for those of you who have been following my blog, you know that I am still the type of person who loves to shop! So in with the new, out with the old. For the mere money I spend on clothes, it is a very satisfying turn around that keeps me happy. I’m always looking for that special item and I’m thrilled that the hunt for it will never end.

Another inside thing I got into, is baking
. Yes, the mood hit me on Saturday when we had rain all day and I realized that the sun was not going to appear. We plugged in, giving the solar panels and invertor a break, and I used the convection oven all day. Chocolate chip cookies, which were a bust but still tasted good, peanut butter cookies, peaches and cream pie (from some fresh Ontario peaches purchased in Hanover) and an apple pie (made from some Ridge grown apples that I put in the freezer last fall).

Everything turned out perfect (except for the cc cookies) so encouraged by my results I made lasagna for Sunday night supper. I must admit, the convection oven is a huge learning experience and sometimes it is called a few choice names, but I’m gradually getting the hang of it. Bill doesn’t seem to mind my attempts at all, as is evident from the crumbs from his late night munching!

Bill enjoying a snack with Clemson waiting for the last lick

If you look close, you'll see the evidence on the box

I decided on Monday to pull my sewing machine out, since it was another wet day for the most part.

On the left, a craft sale purchase $5
and on the right, not so pretty but easier to
dry with, my homemade version
 I had a couple of things to be mended and then got into making some of my fridge hand drying towels. I hate paying for the homemade ones at craft sales, not because I don’t appreciate the handiwork but because I am too cheap when it comes to that kind of thing. So I make my own, they aren’t perfect by any means but they work for us and when they get too stained, I can usually just replace the towel part. It keeps me out of trouble!
towel bottoms and some re-used tops and some homemade tops


Well, the sun has appeared and the clouds to the west have dissipated so time to get out there and survey the property…….um, in my ‘jammys. LOL I won’t go too far!

I hope you all have as wonderful days as I have been experiencing. I'm not even concerned that summer is drawing to a close in just over a month! for the first time, I welcome it.

Thank you for reading and as always all comments are welcome!


  1. We have only had a couple part days of rain other than that not bad at all.
    I too love the early mornings, so peaceful. Tv is something we seldom watch but we both enjoy our e-readers. And just puttering around, walkabouts and the fitness centre.
    We are looking forward to the fall weather and once again exploring the southern states in search of new places and warm weather, some new and some we have been to. Love getting back on the road again.

  2. We were very glad for the rain, we needed it so there were no complaints. Even got more this afternoon and things are looking so much greener already!