Cotton Candy Sunrise

There are mornings when sleep escapes me and the dawn pulls at my heart strings to get up and face the day with perhaps a surprise or two. But, if you’re at all like me all you wish for before sunrise is that hot cup of coffee or freshly brewed and steeped tea from your favorite mug.

My vessel of choice has a tiny cracked edge on the rim, but each time I find myself reaching in the cupboard for this particular mug.  I have to smile as most mornings I feel as worn and chipped as this piece of pottery.

Why don’t I just chuck this damaged mug to the curb you ponder? Well, just because it’s not a perfect specimen of finely crafted clay any longer it still has value. Value for its vast space that is empty, until I fill it with my favorite beverage. Value because it was perhaps a cherished gift at one point in time many decades ago, or perhaps just because it reminds me each and every morning that even though I may feel damaged, chipped, cracked, or just down right worn out to the bone. There is value to be found.

No matter what state this body or mind is in at the time, I still can hold on to my own value and validate myself. I fear too many are waiting for validation from others when all we need is to look in the mirror and see ourselves and the value we all contain in each layer of skin, each cell that makes each of us who we are.

The dawn called to me this morning and would not be ignored. I rose, I brewed that cup of coffee and lovingly poured it into my favorite chipped mug, while dragging my feet inside of my floppy slippers that have aged to the point of barely remaining on my feet.

The curtains came ablaze with pinks and oranges to the point of shocking me into taking flight in those loose slippers with mug, and camera in hand to validate this special dawn that was determined to wake me just before its arrival.

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Stay safe and happy my readers.

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One day at a time little bluebird…

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Last Fall was a time for the seasons to change gradually into our long 6 months of winter

Winter LeafThen we must settle into another frame of mind as the days grow shorter in daylight hours and the light of the winter months take on a frigid appearance. Then as if by design one night around 10 p.m it will appear to be daylight as the moon shines brightly upon the fallen white snow that covers everything. It’s quite magical really. Almost as magical as the colors of the Northern Lights. Every time I am blessed to witness the Northern Lights I dream of warm summer days after a rain when the rainbows appear to dance across the sky from left to right or is it right to left ..

Today is April 29, 2020 and Spring has arrived along with uncertain days and long nights of dreaming of carefree moments that went by un-noticed before. Those moments should have been cherished and the delights of just being able to walk outside without forethought of possible danger. Today, we live in un-certain times, but my heart holds on to H O P E, since I was given the middle name Esparanza which is hope in English. I’ve always throughout my life , these 62 years ~ Held on to Hope … Cherished hope, prayed for hope, wished for hope for others and for myself.

One day at a time little bluebird, hold on to the beauty of hope, one day at a time

 

Well…it’s May 21st 2017 ~ Pondering over my garden…

I jumped on sowing seeds like a mad woman facing another joyous season for gardening in Northern Ontario, Canada back in January ~ where the growing season can be short and stall out at a moments notice due to sudden frost or the dreaded first snows of the Fall season.

This year I’m trying my hands at something a tad new for me. Using the shortness of the growing season to my advantage, instead of just growing what I please and hope for the best. Tomatoes are on the long list of planting out this season, except I’ve opted for the cherry indeterminate variety, instead of the jumbo mega tomatoes I kept trying to get to harvest before the season changes on me.

As I approach 60 I’ve grown tired of running out at night covering up plants to protect them against frost, so I’ve implemented grow covers which will protect the plants from the chill at night and protect as well from the critters and birds. Usually, I plant a lot of seeds directly into the ground only to have the chipmunks and birds as well as the squirrels coming in for a feast, since in their minds I’ve rang the dinner bell pronouncing a delightful treat for them.

I love watching these critters and birds around my yard, and don’t really mind sharing as long as they don’t rob me of all the little pea seeds I plant out. Oh how I adore steaming the tender beans and pea pods freshly harvested off the vines.

I’m trying artichoke for the first time, since I found a short growing variety that says if the seedlings are taken outside in 10 c weather this will trick the plants that it’s been already one year and marching into the second year of growth as soon at the temperatures warm back up. I had no idea that these plants take two years in the ground before you can harvest them.. So, wish me luck with these and join in my journey learning new tricks for this old dog, so to speak…

I’ve also been harvesting French Breakfast Radishes for the past two weeks out of my homemade garden trug on my deck. In March I scooped up the soil in there from last year and placed it in a large tote to thaw out… Just like meat from a freezer… wink

It only took a little under a week and I was ready to admin the soil and begin sowing the radish seeds, and a few pea pod seeds I found left from last years garden. I watched a gardening channel on you tube and found out that if I used two layers of plastic to cover the garden trug the temp inside could reach 70 f or 21 c … Well, with the snow still on the ground and many more snow storms to come I gave it a go and sowed the seeds. I still had lots of leaves from last Fall to also use as a nice little blanket.

Magic began to happen, the soil regulated its self to these temps and the seeds began to germinate beautifully.. I am now eating freshly grown radishes from the garden trug one full month ahead of other years. I do believe that I shall add lettuce to the planting schedule next year around March, along with the radish seeds. This variety of radish is absolutely heavenly to eat, not too hot at all as some of the radish varieties can taste a bit spicy and not good for my ulcers.

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This past weekend could have turned out differently……

Spring….is such a delightful word that can contain many different meanings. The time of year is my favorite definition for the word, Spring. Especially coming out of a long and cold winter full of shoveling daily to keep up with all of the white stuff.

But, spring also can mean a spring in your step. For me meaning I’m almost skipping outside to visit my yet to be planted garden for this season. Even, my pup appears to have a spring in each of her tired, old four paws. You see she is aging and it is beginning to show in her movements ~ Almost, mirroring my own hobbles around on those certain rainy cold days of spring.

How about that trusty mattress that you bought years ago, and loved every night breaking it in just to your liking. But, as with breaking in a nice new pair of shoes or pair of jeans, just about the time they are broken in to your will, they will begin to fray or become airy as is my old tennis shoes .. Who have by the way never seen a tennis court, since I’ve bought them just for the comfort…Remember that mattress well springs tend to creak and crackle with age same as my pup and I …

This early spring has been unlike most of the 34 other springs I’ve experienced since immigrating up to Canada from Florida. It’s been really early.. by a month or more!

Mother Nature also must have a spring in her step as well with all the the flooding happening in the United States and in Canada. The rains came and someone forgot to turn off the taps. I wonder what type of water bill good old mother nature will owe?

Please enjoy the short video of Mother Nature showing us here who is boss…

Excuse the shaky parts in the beginning of the video, the winds were thrashing so fierce they were throwing stuff at my face.. oops…But, the rest is pretty smooth…

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Caught between Spring and Summer

I’ve been so busy over the winter time here sowing seeds of all types. I wanted to get ahead of the short growing season we have here in the north. I thought I’d try my gardening hands with some different plants this coming season. Now that Spring has finally arrived here and melted all of the snow away I have daily chores of taking out the seedlings for their first breath of fresh outdoor air and the glorious sights of a real sun ~ instead of just grow lights. These little plants need a weeks worth of hardening off, 30 minutes each day not in direct sunlight so they will be able to handle being outside fully.

Today it has been raining, and they are calling for more of the same tomorrow off and on. This morning I awoke to fog which always signals warmer temps after a chilly overnight. So, with the pending rain I thought I’d drive to the lake here and see if the sun would come out for a picture or two.

As I sat in the car (bad knee day) I thought about what I was going to blog about or what video I was going to make for my YouTube channel ~ BirchtreeGuardianGardener

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I of course had to make little cards over the winter time so I could mail some to my gardening friends all over the world. You see we gardeners and other You Tubers love to exchange items of interest. I’ve found this to be quite enjoyable during a time of struggle this past winter. I’ve experienced some family losses that have taken their toll on me for a year now, but I’m strong and will survive one way or the other.

I tend to find things to keep me very busy, instead of sinking into that hole that so many other people know all about. The sowing of seeds this past winter has saved me in more ways than one. They needed my daily attention and care. I could not refuse to get out of bed each day, since these newly sprouted plants needed me to bring the sunshine to them and water them or just tickle them to stimulate the outside wind so their tender stems would grow strong and healthy.

Well, in doing so these tiny little plants over the wintertime have tended also to me. By, giving me a purpose and a goal.

One was to get the heck outta bed! Keep my mind and my thoughts on bringing these plants up so in the spring they could finally feel the warmth of the sunshine, the breeze of the winds and the love mother nature has to offer them.

The past few days I’ve been feeling low and couldn’t for the life of me figure out why….

The weather is brighter and the warmth is returning along with the longer daylight hours. How I love spending time outside working in my garden or just sitting out there watching my little pup enjoy running around or searching out critters. So, why the long face I asked myself.

I drove to the lake here in search of answers .. This is a place where there are no phones to ring, or door bells to blaze… No, distractions except for the calming feelings I get sitting by the lake. Spring has just begun and yet I’ve felt like someone poked a hole in my balloon, and I was sailing out of control without a True North in sight.

Two hours later I didn’t have my answer, so I fired up the old car and drove to another place that I love .. The video below shows you this special place, where many decades ago my late husband and I sat on the bench that you will see in the video.

This bench is the place where I told him what my doctor has said to me (back in 1993) I would one day become blind.. There were five eye operations that I could have, but after that nothing could be done. It was as black and white as that. Well, many things changed that day by the waters edge, but one thing that didn’t change was my conviction to never say never and no matter what the situation I would remain strong, blind or not!

I found my answer today while sitting on that bench, remembering the past and the memories I retained. I still have my eyesight after just One Operation so far on the left eye. I have 4 more operations to go, if they are needed. The doctor back in 1994 told me the first operation would only last for one year and I’d need another one. I told him, “We’ll see about that…” You see I’m not your normal patient and you’ll see for yourself.

I was the first person to have this special eye operation in Ontario all those years ago, and they brought in 5 other surgeons to watch the procedure as well. This has been written up in the Canadian Medical Journal as well. But, as far as I’m concerned they will not get another chance to do another surgery on my eyes. Sheer will of conviction I say has carried me through… I have faith it shall continue…

So enjoy this short video, witness the bench

where I regained my strength back in 1993

and again in 2017

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Wilson The Plant Manager Has an Announcement….

There are days when you just can’t get anything to grow in your garden. Aside from the critters that love to munch on your tender seedlings in the Spring. Why am I mentioning Spring so early, well it appears lots of folks are getting spring like weather all over the globe. It’s even raining here in February, which it never does.. Well, not in the 34 years I’ve lived in Canada.

There’s something strange afloat around here too, I have 5 pineapples that I began growing back in September, after a gardening challenge was made by one of my wonderful YouTube gardening friends. Here’s a look into what my world has been for me this winter, trying to trick pineapple tops to grow in the dead of winter in Canada and have them believe it’s Hawaii..

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Good Golly Miss Molly

Sometimes, mother nature will throw you a curve ball.. Even if it’s not spring training yet…My pup knew early this morning that something was up and she didn’t like it one little bit. The wind began to howl and she began to slowly pant. The thunder roared across the sky as if a freight train was going over the house… My pup began to pant heavily and shake. I rose from my bed to see what was the matter, and didn’t find St. Nick atop the roof, but what I did find was something resembling popcorn bouncing off the rooftop.

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