My Life is really in the Garden

Enjoying and sharing the daily discoveries of the beautiful nature that surrounds me in my lovely garden and everywhere else!


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Last Week I had “One of Those Days” & It Was Quite Fun!!!

In a yard in the spring, there is no lack of beauty everywhere you look!  The beautiful blossoms from the fruit trees have tumbled to the ground.  Such graceful beauty there.  This is an apple blossom.  Something so precious in nature wantonly decorating even the wood chip mulch!  Pretty on so many levels.

003They were so lovely, that  my camera just clicked away …to capture this momentary deliciousness for me to savour later on.001

Ok, so I’m really enthralled with these dainty blossoms ..  here resting on a Salmonberry leaf.002

So, anyway, one day last week, I think it was Thursday, I was having one of those little busy types of days.  Where I go hither and yon and in between I have some little adventures.   My first stop of the day was at Royal Roads, where I visited the most wonderful Camosun College Horticulture greenhouses.   I was given a little tour and on the way, was captivated by the sight of some Leylandi cyprus trees in the midst of a trim.  I quite liked the look of this one .. smooth on the sides and wild and crazy at the top.  It will be lovely when the trimming is finished .. however .. I do prefer this look! 004

This espaliered pear tree is well over a hundred years of age!   And … the ancient walls of this garden are slowly (and lovingly) being resurfaced.  See how the walls look so lovely and bright behind the branches ..005

Here is a section of the wall that has not been resurfaced yet.  I randomly took this photo and now, looking at it, I have a few questions … what type of tree is this?  Where does the path go to?  Is there a gate there?  What is the purpose of the building to the left?  sigh.006

Here is a larger section of the walled garden.  This is a very huge undertaking, the resurfacing of the walls.   It will look so beautiful when done.  Homage to the past.  I’ll visit again to see how the work is progressing.

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I love hypertufa .. here is an example of a hypertufa planting in middle of a bench.  This year the Camosun Horticulture plant sale had quite a variety of the most beautiful and lovingly crafted hypertufa planters.  A few of them now grace our yard.  Many years ago I purchased all the materials to make one and it didn’t happen.  I’m now inspired to try to make one (or 50, who knows, I do get carried away with creative projects!)  🙂

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Here is another one:

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On our tour we met a duck .. a handsome little Mallard.  Due to the vast acreage of this area Hatley Park  there are many old growth trees which provide habitat and protection for a diversity of raptors, birds of all types.  In fact. there is an old Magnolia tree near the greenhouse that attracts quite a number of Cedar Waxwings during July so I plan to go back there to see them.009

Oh darn, I meant to take a closer look at the name tag of this beauty ..008

Is this not a thing of beauty …

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So, at the beginning of this day, my intent was just to visit and purchase a hypertufa planter.  What happened after were unexpected gifts.

A surprise and welcomed little tour of the students gardens.   I met the person who is the head of the whole Royal Roads Gardens .. I cannot fathom the immensity of this position. She is a very knowledgeable and interesting person .. and it would be lovely to sit with her and find out a bit of the history of Hatley Gardens.

I came away from my visit with 2 lovely hypertufa planters, one for us and one for a friend.  A sturdy Bay tree and some horsetail sections.  The horsetail I will keep in pots as they have a tendancy to travel the world and it’s challenging to keep them in control.  Many years ago I had planned to make a soak for my nails, as the horsetail contains silica and  I thought that it might make my nails stronger.  Haven’t done that thus far, but plan to do so with some of the pieces that I obtained.

I learned that eveyone is welcome there, to wander around the gardens so I plan to do just that in the future.  What a restful and creative place to be.

Anyway, on the way out, I saw a young woman jogging to beat the band!  (that means, running all out!).   While I was busy being impressed with her 100% focus on running .. .she waved to me so I stopped.  And learned that she had become lost and was trying to get somewhere in a hurry so I gave her a lift.  Turns out that she is a script writer for a national radio station and oh wow I would have loved to have long talks with her about that.  But no time for that today.

After this .. I found myself stopping in at a little strip of stores along the highway.

And that was kind of interesting too .. so I’ll say more and post photos tomorrow (or the day after!)

🙂

On with this day.   Lunch with friends and my second singing lesson .. I am so excited!!!!1


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A sunny walk at Swan Lake .. my daily walking adventures continue!

Tuesday, June 4, 2013

Lovely summer days, not sure if it is officially summer yet ..but we’ve had quite a few (more than 3!) days of  warm sunny weather.

And, yeah, yesterday I began again my lovely long morning walks.   I’d started the year out well, walking and exercising .. however, that had to be put on hold for a number of months while DH and I worked on the landscaping of our rental.

Now that is complete and my walking adventures continue!

Lovely border flourishing at the edge of the local allotment gardens!

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And this garden area looked most welcoming .. very friendly and open.

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Farther along .. I think this is Cottonwood fluff … looks a lot like snow!
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Lovely cheerful sunlight lights up the leaves …

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Can you see the tiny little dot to the left of the tree trunk?  A spritely little Robin poses for a minute.

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At very long last .. closer to Swan Lake Nature Sanctuary!!!!  Feels like I”m going home for a visit .. it’s been awhile!

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Aptly named, eh?

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Not many people out as I walked along the pathways.  Serious birders have most likely come and gone.  I passed a few joggers and some teenagers .. but otherwise, it was a lovely quiet moment in time.

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All is quite peaceful at Tuesday Pond .. I’ve missed the baby ducklings and goslings.  Noticed this couple of Mallards, quickly snapped a photo and silently backed away .. to leave them undisturbed, although they knew I was there.    This is their home, after all, and I am but a visitor there.  Respect.

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How splendid .. all growing things are fully leafed out …

 

 

 

 

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I tiptoed along the little bridge spanning Tuesday Pond, not wanting to disturb the bathing ritual of the little Robin below.

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One of the million or so wild roses blooming .. scenting the air with their most beautiful perfume ..

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Dainty little wild flowers have been lovingly planted in spaces along the rock’s surface …

 

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Next I notice the hawk perched high above .. overseeing the Sanctuary . . he knows I’m there and turns his heard around several times to stare at me as  lift my little camera to take a photo.  Decides I’m not going to cause any trouble … so that’s a good thing!

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Time for a quick grooming …

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A loose feather is plucked out .. and I watched as it tumbled … floating gently into the blackberry bushes below.   I was so tempted to wade into the chest-high grasses to retrieve it, but decided to leave it.   I even stepped a few feet into the grass, but realized that the odds of finding the feather in the thick growth of blackberries that surrounded the base of the tree were slim to none.

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Leaving the Hawk to continue his search for breakfast .. I continued on my way.

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Beautiful … beautiful .. beautiful …

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No birds about .. must signify that the eagles are nearby …

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The little observatory .. and I searched for the remains of the Marsh Wren’s nest, but couldn’t see any …

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What a wonderful way to start the day!   And then I spent the rest of this most marvellous day playing in the yard.  Mulching the garlic beds with the seaweed that D & I collected last week.   This garlic crop is stupendous.   Some of the soft necks were growing out of the ground and they were huge!  Also. although I’d planted the cloves some distance apart, somehow, during the winter, some of them had converged into groups of 2 and 3!!

Ah well .. time for another walking adventure and backyard gardening!

🙂

 


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Some blue skies. Another series of lovely walks. And just plain admiring the beauty of nature.

Tuesday, February 5, 2013

This year is just marching along like a little trooper.  One day follows the next and soon it will be summer.  Ok, I’m really an optimist.  And I’m one that is very slowly getting back into shape.  What with my long brisk walks and exercises.  Just enough to get me going and ready to work outside for 10 hours or so a day.

Just a few days ago .. the skies were like this all day

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And this … I really like the soft colours .. very dreamy

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And one slightly overcast day .. it appeared as if there were two sun’s trying to burst through the clouds .. at least that was what my imagination conjured up.

03I’ve been out walking nearly every day except for the odd weekend.  Lovely fast walks as I used to do.  So very invigorating.  One day, I’d barely set out when I noticed the flapping wings of an eagle low overhead.  It was flying from area of Royal Oak and was headed for Swan Lake.  I brought out my binoculars and focused on this magnificent bird way up high.

How lucky was I, to be outside at that very spot at that very moment .. to be able to witness this free flight.  It certainly started my journey off in a good positive way.

Everyday I go in a different, random direction.  And every day I’m finding more paths that lead to more paths (and nearly always … to Swan Lake Nature Sanctuary!).  Perhaps that is how my life is heading right now.  Many paths, previously undiscovered by me .. but, there nonetheless.  If I hadn’t gotten out the door and out walking, well, I would never have discovered them.  I feel quite adventurous and curious.

I came upon an Anna .. quietly perched on a branch.

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Before she left .. she hovered .. seemed to look at me and then .. like a blur .. quickly flew away.

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Couldn’t help but notice the lush materials draping tree branches .. perfect for the birds to use for nesting material.   Everything is there for them.

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Perched quietly in the marsh grasses, well hidden, was a tiny bird.  Was it a female Nuthatch or a Wren?  I couldn’t quite tell, and didn’t want to disturb this lovely being.

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Along the way, some Robins were taking advantage of the quiet to have little baths to freshen up for the day.  I watched for awhile.

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Over at Tuesday pond, the marsh grasses that were planted by the hard-working volunteers have grown very well and provide some privacy for the ducks.  Love this.

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Very beautiful …

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Loving the soothing rustling sound of the dried grasses as a light breeze wends through their growth.  Not too much longer and the fresh new growth of spring will supplant these.

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Beauty of nature continues … the mosses and lichens covering the branches …

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A diminutive little Chestnut-backed Chickadee ….

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Well before I was born (and that was a “few” years ago) this marvellous tree was but a tiny little sapling.  Imagine what this tree has seen over the years.

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Are words needed here?  I thought not.

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Now .. this is a tree with character.  A survivor.  Strong and individual.

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Another example of nature taking over .. these branches will (hopefully) be left to break down over time, providing food and sanctuary for birds and the earth.

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The raindrops fell lightly upon the surface of Swan Lake .. one morning.

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And .. one evening .. the skies were kissed with rose .. quite a lovely look.

 

 

 

 

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This is the time of the year when energies flag.   Inspiration seems to have taken a holiday.  Energies are not at their peak.  It’s called .. “take a break and relax” .. really!  Some call it the doldrums.   Whatever.  I really want to be outside, tearing up the yard, making changes. Yet, what do I find myself doing instead?  Looking up at the sky.  And at the birds . .there is such a variety.  And glad to see both the male and the female Townsend warblers.

I’ve delegated a place in the yard for holding plants for our next place.   Seems I have quite a few.  And really, way too many plants for our current  yard.  I have a curse .. and that is .. I have a plant magnet in my personality .. that draws me to plant sales.  And try as  might to ignore this magnetic pull .. I fail miserably.

So last week, armed with a Groupon and a wonderful gift card from my DH .. I made my way to Cannor’s Nursery.   Oh.  No.   Plant sale.   Front and back.  So I chose a few.  Then decided that its high time to buy something that will look good, structure-wise for the yard.

And I chose 2 lovely items.   Made of metal and built for plants to grow on.  And easy to move around.  So I will take some photos tomorrow and share.

Well … time to go and watch Coronation Street.  There are 3 or 4 storylines that I wish would quickly end.   But, don’t get me started on that!

🙂

 

 


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I found a lost Staffordshire and then we had to go looking for his owner

Friday, January 25, 2013

A few days ago, on my daily walk … I was standing at the edge of the path, watching one of the resident eagles who was perched in a nearby Oak tree.    A guy came walking fast up towards me and asked if I’d seen a white dog.  A Staffordshire dog …named ..well, his name doesn’t matter.   I hadn’t seen him and promised that I would look for him.

I continued with my walk and met a group of birders .. asked if they had seen this dog. Sure enough, he had been following them and then he exited the Sanctuary (yes, at the Swan Lake Nature Sanctuary again!)    So I took the same path and began asking all that I met .. if they had seen the dog.  No … but .. looking ahead . .I could see this dog .. he’d just crossed a busy road and was walking along the wooden bridge.  So I started to run .. .yelling “stop that dog”.

And you know what!  A lovely young man did just exactly that!  I gave him my scarf and asked him to loop it under the dog’s collar .. which he did!  Scarves come in handy!

So now .. I’m feeling so happy that I’ve found the lost dog .. and start walking where I think the owner might be.

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After a few minutes of walking around .. I see the owner and yell out to him that I’d found his dog!    Whew … turns out the dog is a Houdini and is able to open windows and escapes to explore the neighbourhood.  The owner has paid high fines and says that I’ve just saved him hundreds of dollars.   Well .. I’m just glad that the two are together again.

So I said goodbye .. and continued on my way.  Certain to have burned off a few calories in this little adventure …bye little dog .. glad that all is right in your world now …

02Lovely blue skies from that day …

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So very alluring …. so very beautiful07

Walking towards Tuesday Pond, I encountered a small flock of Canada Geese … these birds get very defensive some times .. so I proceeded slowly…

 

 

 

 

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They moved .. just as slowly .. into a side marsh ..

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And soon these stately birds had exited .. whew … I was glad.10

Farther along .. I saw the reason for the Mallards to make their quick and noisy departure from the pond … there was a hawk high up in the tree ..

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These gray squirrels are not native to Vancouver Island .. they’ve usurped the black squirrels, however, I caught a glimpse of one last week ..

14More beautiful aerial scenery ..

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So relaxing to look at .. and cheerful ..04These wonderful walks are invigorating.  I just cannot imagine how my days would be without them.  I wouldn’t meet some very lovely dogs.   Have little adventures like finding a lost dog.  How wonderful is that.

And the places my lovely muddy walking shoes take me!  Along very long and winding streets.   Up and down hill.   Through lovely local parks.  To the Swan Lake Nature Sanctuary .. where there are lots of knowledgeable birders I can talk with and learn.

Such lovely quiet periods of time .. to stop, reflect on nature.  Have the opportunity to watch birds living in the wild.    As in this grouping of Double-Crested Cormorants .. relaxing on a float near the main walkway that spans Swan Lake.IMGP9442

So every day is different and every day the walks are long!  I think that I need to get up real early in order to have these wonderful walks and then have enough time left over to spend lots of time in the garden!

I’m still carefully removing the heavy mulched layer from the garlic beds.  Every day, more and more of the leafy growth is emerging.   Oh, I can hardly wait to dig up the large elephant garlic .. this is going to be the best crop yet.

And my lovely chopped oak leaf mulch is waiting to be used.  Along with the lovely batch of seaweed that D and I collected last week.  Marvelous magic for the garden.

Well .. end of the day .. time to close off .. it’s been a great week – all told!

🙂


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About an eagle looking down at me; icy pathways; Mallards being delightful .. and bicycle eating trees!

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Chilly days, some frost happening, sometimes blue skies … and still I continue my lovely daily walks.  Many years ago I used to walk and walk everywhere .. for I hadn’t a car!  Fast forward and I’m back to daily walks again.  And loving it.

So many places to go.   Things look so different compared to driving, I’m discovering streets and neighbourhoods that I hadn’t known existed.  And learning names of streets.

Decided that I’ll strive to continue my daily walks to the Swan Lake Sanctuary .. there are a variety of entrances/exits that I can take that will add variety to my walks so they don’t ever get to feel boring.

So yesterday at Swan there were still flooded paths, frozen sections.   Signage up to show everyone how to take alternate routes.

Found myself near a huge old oak with the female eagle perched atop.  Looking for lunch.  Looking down at a nearby duck-filled marsh.

Decided to walk across the grassy meadow in order to get a closer look.

03and so I decided to get a closer look

02What the hey … perhaps I can get closer yet .. ok .. I think this is close enough.  She is giving me the “eye” and I read body language enough to understand that she doesn’t like me standing beneath the tree .. so close.  Bye bye ..

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This is part of the Sanctuary, where she was seeking a good tasty morsel for lunch … and below there was a marshy area full of Mallards .. swimming and just having a good time.  Hopefully they were ignored.

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Some lovely colour ..

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Ice edged the shoreline of Tuesday Pond16

I’d successfully walked through the deep puddles, I was heading to the little bridge at Tuesday Pond .. a little water wasn’t going to stop me!15

Nor was a patch of ice going to deter me.14

However, I have my limits and then I turned around ..

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Tossed some flatted oats on the icy sections for the Mallards to feed on.

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The mysteriously banded Mallard is still here ..  no one I’ve spoken to at the Sanctuary knows where she came from, last year.

12Party time ..

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The eagle wasn’t out at this time .. and I couldn’t see the hawks .. so all the ducks were out, enjoying the water.10

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Some icy covered rocks along the way07

Brrrrr06

The sun tried to shine through ..05

And the Robins chirped merrily along.04

Ok .. now I can talk about other things.  I’m still in the process of decluttering.   And discovering that hindsight is great. I had a number of Anne Perry books which I hadn’t read, so bundled them all up for donation to the Blue Box (reading program).  Kept one book …and tried to read it.  Historical novels have never held my interest.  So, although I’d collected Anne’s books, I’d not made the effort to actually read one.

Oh, well …. what can I say.  One page read, started the next and the next and a few pages in, I’m totally hooked.  Her characters are rich and she shows such a wealth of human understanding that I am hooked.  I’ll definitely be looking for more of her books at the next library book sale.   Never say never .. that saying is true.

While in the process of choosing which books to keep and which to give away .. I had to flip open the books and scan the first page .. to see if I’d read it before.   If I had (and they weren’t written by Maeve Binchy – which I keep for re and  re and re-reading, they are so very wonderful) then away they go into the box.

Now for my gardening books.   I’d already given away quite a few of them.  Now that I’m “enlightened” in my gardening ways, I’d decided to give away all of those that don’t fit my new way of gardening.  Still .. I have many, two bookcases full.  So I’ll need to go through the books again and just be firmer with myself.

As I’ve looked through some of the really old Organic Gardening books (the small format) .. I’ve read articles on soil and what lifeforms live in the soil.  Before I took my Organic Master Gardening course, I’d just skimmed over these articles  The same information is also (I am finding) written about in great detail in quite a number of my gardening books.  Ok … so the information was there all along … and I’d ignored it.  I only paid attention when I paid good money and took the course . … which I’m glad I did .. otherwise ….

And sometimes, I just wish that I wouldn’t look through books before I decided to discard them.

Case in point the 2011 Farmer’s Almanac.  Leafing through the book, saw an article on page 91 “Hungry Trees” and read that on Washington’s Vashon Island, there was a tree which grew around a bicycle.  The bike had been left leaning against the tree, decades ago.  Now the tree has grown around it and the bike is 7 feet off the ground.  Incredulous, I searched for any verification .. and sure enough, it’s true.

Although there are many blogs which mention this (and other strange tree happenings) … I found this delightful blog:  http://www.atlasobscura.com/places/vashon-island-bike-tree

An amazing blog site: http://www.atlasobscura.com/about-us  one I plan to visit!
🙂


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More happy pics from a lovely frosty morning ..

Saturday, January 12, 2013

Yesterday was another beautiful sunny day!  And a busy one!   Went for my lovely long walk, taking various routes, walking as briskly as possible.  Breathing in the crisp fresh air .. sturdy walking shoes gripping the pathways along the way.   Started earlier in the day … fewer people out and about.  Lots of birds chirping.

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Frosty covered boardwalk … not slippery at all!  While on my walk, spoke with several other walkers who kindly warned me about slippery patches!  I was feeling so confident that I wouldn’t be affected.   And both times I thought this very thought .. well … I happened to be on icy patches and found myself gliding along and flailing my arms for balance.  Coincidence?  I think, perhaps, maybe.  So I stopped thinking about slipping and guess what!  It didn’t happen again.  The power of the mind!05

Saw the lovely Cormorant .. the one who escaped being the eagle’s lunch yesterday.  Noted that the Cormorant kept looking upwards at the sky.  Survival.  And he didn’t perch on the rail for grooming and he didn’t go for a flight .. at least while I was there.06

Love this stand of trees .. birches, I think.  Their silvery silhouettes were very striking and cool looking.07

Still waters .. watery reflections of the earthbound formations gazing down .. 09

And this Arbutus makes a willowy shapely form .. with the side branches outstretched, it appears that the tree is dancing very gracefully.

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Little birds quickly taking advantage of quiet to take a little drink of water .. so I stopped to let them enjoy a few minutes without interruption.

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This stately willow never gets tired .. always beautiful in rain, sun, all seasons .. magnificent.

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Here is the shadow me .. taking a photo of the shadowy bench .. talk about another dimension!12

Way up in the tree sits a little grey squirrel.   Softly nestled on a bed of moss, the branch is high enough to avoid close encounters of the human kind.13

Ok, he’s seen me and really wants me to continue on my way .. so he crouches down to wait till I do.14

Saw a flock of tiny birds feeding away at the little pine cones.  Their cheerful chatter was quite delightful as they frolicked about the branches .. eating delicacies.   Don’t know what kind of birds they area .. but very sweet.   Felt very fortunate to see them.15

Back home .. Mrs. Downy Woodpecker is nibbling away.  Don’t know what was in the air yesterday .. maybe the birds thought it was spring or something.  Noticed some huge Robins having flying altercations and tumbles in the trees.  Then I saw the Downy Woodpeckers going through a troublesome patch also.  Think there were 4 of them ….they seemed to choose a feeder then change their minds.  In the end, though, peace and quiet.16

Sigh …17

The bulbs are emerging … the weather has them fooled into thinking that spring has arrived.  No such luck.18

And here they are .. delightful little Bush-tits …. there are quite a few this year.  And I think that they are slowly getting used to me.  19

Love them …20

Wonder who is in the plane .. where is it going …

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The consensus is good for the new feeder.  03

And my garlic .. growing greens up through a very thick layer of ground oak leaves and seaweed….02

And on this note … that’s it for the day .. 01


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Revisited Swan Lake for a lovely walk. And planning creative activities for the New Year. Fun!!!

Monday, January 7, 2013

A few days ago I decided to renew my walks to Swan Lake .. so off I went .. it was an overcast day and just a very light mist of rain from time to time.

Felt so great to be walking the trails once again .. I was determined to keep walking around the Sanctuary and tried to minimize my stops   Challenging to do as I really wanted to stop and savour the peace and quiet.

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This is one of my favourite sections … where the path travels at the end of the of the side ponds.  Edged with luscious moss-covered boulders, islands of ferns and gentle silhouettes of Oak branches.  Slightly mystical feel to this area.02

Did stop for a few minutes to look up at one of the local eagles .. have been watching them in this tree for quite a number of years now.   At one time I thought they nested here, but think most likely this is one of their favourite perching areas.  They can see quite clearly for miles from this tree.03

The Marsh Wrens were communicating to each other … lovely sounds.

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Only saw this lone female Mallard over at the short observatory … she swam swiftly over when  I brought out the flatted oats.   She daintily pecked away at those I tossed into the water.  Before leaving this place, I scattered a generous handful onto the surface of the marsh grasses nearby.

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The Staff and Volunteers of Swan Lake have been quite busy, pulling invasive plants and planting trees for the future.  An impressive amount of work has been done and the changes are quite evident.06

I took a photo of the project’s sign …..07

The restoration work was started last year  One area of this side pond had been cleared of invasive plants, the ground had been heavily mulched and this year I notice that this pond is quite large .. or maybe it just appears that way, since more land is viewable.  More room for the birds to feed, nest.08

A natural fence made of branches, serves to act as a barrier to keep joggers, walkers out of the area, to allow the natural process of growth to take place.  I like it.09

Farther along, I viewed a Great Blue Heron in a tree .. grooming time ..10

Time to relax away from the crowds.11

At Tuesday Pond I stopped on the little bridge and fed the Mallards some of the flatted oats .. they cautiously came over to where I was standing, way above them.12

Soon there were a few of them gathered around ….13

Now I was at the long walkway and saw a little group of Mallards ahead of me.   It was early in the day and the crowds weren’t yet here .. quiet time ..

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Stood for a while to see if there was any great bird activity .. no Geese or Hawks or Eagles .. and no seagulls!  Hmmm .. no seagulls equals an Eagle nearby.  Oh, that’s right .. one of them was over at the huge Oak tree on Saanich Road ..

Saw a little feather floating on the surface of the water …a gentle gray blended with white …15

Noticed some nests tucked away .. waiting for spring …16

And another one17

Piles of clipped blackberry branches .. wonder if these will be used as mulch?  18

Another nest tucked away …19

More information on invasive plants and what will be planted instead ..20

It was a lovely walk and wonderful to re-visit the nature sanctuary.  Funny when I first retired I went there nearly every day .. now I find myself “too busy”  hm……. maybe I should just make the time as the rewards are so great.

Also, at one point the ducks seemed to recognize me (cause I was feeding them a lot) and this time  .. we seem like strangers.  It is a Sanctuary after all and the birds (all of them) can easily find their own food.  I only leave the flatted oats (much of which I purchase from the Swan Lake House) and feed them at the public observatory places … this is expected and allowed, which is a good thing.

I’ve found the last two years to have been a kind of whirlwind for me.  Having worked hard all my life and at times having to work two jobs just to pay the rent … it was very overwhelming to have my life schedule unmarked by “having” to go somewhere every day.

At first I just walked and walked and walked.  Then I started my little gardening business while at the same time I took ground-school over again (for aviation) … once the course has been paid for initially, one an retake it over again, which is great .. learning the newest regulations.  Then my DH arranged for me to have dual instruction.  So I’d go out to do my gardening work, race home and then out to the airport.  All was in a whirl.

Not wanting to pause in my whirlwind of learning, I enrolled in the Organic Master Gardening  Course (Gaia College) at Royal Roads.  Oh, wow.  My life changed.   All my time was spent in trying to get my head around this new way of understanding the living soil, new terminology, methods . .this was a very intensive course.  And I’m still studying my notes.

Started back at making soap .. I’d begun in 1986 and then took a break .. so happy to be going back to that.

Ok, I had a few minutes to spare so I enrolled for the Ecological Landscaping course …. oh … my.   Twice a week, intensive planning, measuring, studying .. really … I feel that I’ve learned so much and more incentive to get out my books and draw and plan some more.

However … I have decided not to continue on with the course.  Part of me feels so overwhelmed and really I need the $$ to pay down some debt .. so I feel  bit “underwhelmed” right now.

This decision allows me much more free time … no more 3 hour classes twice a week with the additional days of planning and study.

I can use these blocks of time quite well, thank you very much.  Decluttering continues .. bags of books to take to the blue boxes by Thrifty’s .. these are donations to reading programs.   Plus, I need to make more shelf space for the upcoming end of January “Friends of the Library” book sale!

Time to plan my soap making for the new year.

Work in the garden (or really “play” in the garden).

Spend some time sewing .. time to dust of my sergers .. I have two .. a 3-thread and a 5 threader.  Love making things. Maybe I’ll spend some time finally making a purse that I really love.  Have kept a particular pattern for years, vowing that some day … well, the day has arrived (this year).  It’s a funky little purse, round in shape.  Straps are part and parcel of the purse.  Wide straps, one is longer than the other and it just slips through the short one and voila, it’s closed.

I will post a pic when I make one.  Creative ideas have been bouncing around my head for years on this purse.  Time to make it a reality.

Oh, the sewing projects I have!  And this year for sure … I will take my sewing machine outside to work.   I actually did this one year .. made drapes outside.  And felt much more creative working in the sun.

A fun year and it’s started already!

🙂