Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Exhibition Road

 I was thinking about Exhibition Road, and remembered that I had some pictures of it that I hadn't posted.  Our goal that day was the Natural History Museum, but when we got there the line was very, very long so instead we went to the Victoria and Albert Museum across the street. The V & A proved to be a very interesting museum so we were glad we went to it.

 If you cut across Hyde Park through the middle from north to south, you end up at the top end of Exhibition Road. In 2003, the roadway was redesigned and it is really quite stunning.  The sidewalks were removed and a pattern of black and very pale pink granite was put down instead of pavement. My pictures in no way do justice to the wonderful effect of this spacious promenade.  Slow traffic is allowed down the middle of the road, but it was designed primarily with the enjoyment of the pedestrian in mind.

Decorated columns on the pillars of the Victoria and Albert Museum.

 Such intricate designs.

Another view down the road.  The dark line is a gutter which separates the traffic area from the pedestrian area.

Sunday, February 23, 2014

Straight Paths

Lean on, trust in, and be confident in the Lord with all your heart and mind , and do not rely
on your own insight and understanding. 
In all your ways know, recognize, and acknowledge Him, and He will direct and make
straight and plain your paths.
Proverbs 3:5-6 Amplified Bible

Saturday, February 22, 2014

Snow Abstracts

 There is still plenty of snow around even though we got quite a bit of rain yesterday.  Today is sunny and windy, a little taste of March, before it cools down again. 

I'm still enjoying the snow with its undulating soft shapes and tree shadows.

 And I'm feeling lazy and like having an excuse to spend time doing quiet indoor activities.  Soon enough, the gardens will need attending.

Thursday, February 20, 2014

Spring is Coming! and Hockey Gold.

 I like to bring in a few forsythia branches and force them in water just so I can have some fresh green around, and a few yellow blooms.
Remarkable how well branches leaf out, without fertilizer or roots.

When I went to pick up a parcel at the local post office, which is a little depanneur (corner store), the women's Olympic gold medal hockey game was into overtime. Earlier in the afternoon, I had heard that the US team was ahead 2-0 so I had written off our chances for a win. The owner of the PO had her TV on French CBC and was totally engrossed in the game -encouraging, chastising, cheering, sighing.  I told her that last I heard the US was winning, and without taking her eyes off the TV, she filled me in on the exciting tying goal our team made in the third period with less than a minute to go. Another customer and I joined in watching the game.  What else could we do? The owner was not going to miss this crucial overtime period of the game.  When the whistle blew for an off-side and the game paused, she quickly got my parcel and settled back to watch again.  I left before our winning goal, but I can just imagine her explosive cheer when it happened. Yeah, Canada!

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Valentine's Day Arrangement

 Flowers are lovely at any time of the year, but especially in the dead of winter.

Pretty Peruvian lily - so delicate in pink.

 Lush red rose.

Almost like a butterly.

 A happy gang of carnations.

Silhouette in pink.

Monday, February 17, 2014

Paper Beads

I made the paper beads a while ago and finally got around to stringing them with a few plastic beads in between.  The paper beads are simply triangles of colourful paper (I used pictures from seed catalogues) that are rolled up and glued in place with white glue.  I find them quite attractive.

Thursday, February 13, 2014




Monday, February 10, 2014

Who's the Culprit?

 "Who's been chewing on Ginger's new pillow?"

 "Pillow? You mean the new fluffy toy?"

"I might have had a little nibble...  But I saw Snappy pulling out stuffing."

"It's all Jawsy's fault. He made the holes and started throwing  stuffing around. I thought I was allowed to with it."

"My new pillow. Ruined".  Sigh.

Saturday, February 8, 2014

Cheery Chickadee

 A cheerful little chickadee getting some lunch.  His lower feathers are so soft that they look like fur.
We are not seeing many birds other than the chickadees this year, so their bright song is very welcome.

 It was challenging to get some photos of the birds as they are so quick to pick up a seed and then fly off, and the shutter on my camera isn't super fast.

 They were also sneaky about grabbing the seed from the far side of the feeder where they were out of view.

Thursday, February 6, 2014

Orchid- Take 2

 The orchid that I posted about in early November is still in full bloom.  I am surprised at how well it is doing as it is smack up against a window and has been subjected to some pretty cold temperatures. The roots on the window side look a little sorry, but everything else seems great.
 I have diligently been watering it 1/4 cup of bottled water every week.  Our tap water is much too hard for orchids. No fertilizer for the winter, but I will start with a weak solution now that the days are getting longer.

 Suddenly it is putting out these amazing aerial roots that grow away from the light.  I'm going to fill my spray bottle with plain water so that I can mist them daily.
At all the nodes, healthy shoots are showing so I should get plenty of blooming stalks when the current blooms have finished. A cut just above the node will stimulate the shoot to really start growing.

Tuesday, February 4, 2014

Village de L'Or Bleu

Recently when we were in Quebec, we bought some bottle water, and I was interested to see where the source was.  It's from St. Mathieu d'Harricana.  Now that's a good Quebec name.  Most of the small towns and villages in Quebec are St. Something, a reflection of the strong influence of the Catholic church for so many years.  The "Harricana" is Algonquin for "biscuit", referring to the biscuit shaped pebbles found in the river that flows through the village. There have always been close ties between the Francophone and the Native populations especially in the northern parts of the provinces, and St. Mathieu is almost as far north as you can go on a road in Quebec.  Go out your back door in St. Mathieu and point north, and the next stop is Hudson's Bay, and after that, the North Pole.  The water comes from an esker formation left behind by glaciers . A large deposit of sand was left behind by the glacier, and as rainwater and snowmelt move through it today, impurities are filtered out. The taste of the water reminds me of the spring water that you get in the Laurentian Mts. north of Montreal. Water that is a treat to drink. The motto of St. Mathieu is Village de L'Or Bleu, village of blue gold.

Sunday, February 2, 2014

Back to Winter

 Well, we never left it, of course, but the blog took a mini break from winter scenes.

 Last night, we got another 6" of snow. I'm thankful that we're getting enough moisture this winter especially after reading about the drought conditions in California and Australia.  Temperatures are just below freezing so it's pleasant to be outside.

 The evergreens are all dressed up in their snowy icing.

Happy green cedar branches waving at the passersby.

 The snowbanks are getting higher and higher.  In this spot, they are about 3' high.  One of the joys of snowbanks is that if you slide off the road in your car they are like giant bumper pads. You're not likely to get hurt running into one of them - just stuck.

Abstract snow sculpture in the snowbank.