Saturday, July 18, 2009

Gifts from the Garden

July is a wonderful time for the Garden. Things are growing, we are harvesting, and we are quite literally enjoying the fruits of our Spring labour. Some of it is being eaten straight from the plants, some is being cooked up into recipes, and some is going into the freezer to be stored (I haven't yet tried canning). It is very exciting to find new things ready to eat each day.

We have been snacking on berries. The raspberries grow faster than we can pick them. We have neighbours over nearly every day to help in the harvesting. It is nice to share this with them, and in turn one our closest neighbours share their pool with us.

The herbs are being dried, or cooked fresh into our food. They smell and taste wonderful. So fresh!

The gooseberries match my favourite bowl. We have two bushes and not enough people to eat them all!

We don't have a lot of land, but we have a lot growing. Not enough to sustain us, but enough to enjoy. I can't wait to see what is ready tomorrow!

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Spare Room Makeover.

The before..

What you can't see are the Toronto Blue Jays and Toronto Maple Leafs borders around the ceiling. I'm so embarassed to show this photo because of the mess and the incredible amount of stuff in the room. The room's previous owner left pretty much everything behind, and my piles of fabric went on top of all of that.

After everything was cleaned out, the borders were removed, and the carpets around the edge of the room were ripped up.

The room was painted in a very light blue, Pensive Sky by Behr, and the rest of the carpet and the underpad was removed. I had a fun time pulling staples out of the floor! Whoever installed the carpet went a little crazy with the staples. The old mattress was also traded with a more comfortable one.

And the after..

There is still a lot I want to do with the room, but this is the 'final product' for now. The rug was found in the clearance room of a high end furniture shop. It was less than a quarter of the original price. The shelves on the wall were already there and are so useful that I didn't want to remove them. The upper shelf holds some of my Pyrex collection, and the lower shelf holds storage for craft supplies.

The picture on the wall is from my grandmother. The suitcases are from two of my neighbours, and are being used for both fabric storage and as a bedside table. The bed is part of my brother's old bedroom set. I'm not really fond of the set, but it's solid wood and really good quality. It's perfect for a child's room, which is what it is being saved for. I'm toying with the idea of making a cover for the headboard, but I think the warmth of the wood adds a bit of brightness in this corner. The lamp is from Ikea, and the blanket was made by my mom.

The sewing corner sits on the opposite side of the room. Here you can see the rest of the bedroom set, which holds my craft books, fabric, and supplies. The white shelf was bought at a church sale for $5. I'm planning to make a covered cork board to go over the desk. Right now that wall is a bit bare.

Curtains are in the works for that window. The blind broke while we were trying to put it back up after painting, so the window is in desperate need of a covering. It was a lot of work to turn this room around, but I'm so happy with the result!

The books, card games, and stuff from the first photo is either in storage in a huge closet in the basement, or is back with its original owner. The most important thing was making the room functional. We have guests coming to visit this summer and we need the extra sleeping space. It is also very nice to be able to sew and create in an uncluttered space, and have more room for my supplies. There is a lot more closet space for storage. It's just more functional all around.

Saturday, July 4, 2009

Busy Busy Bee.

It's SpringSummer Cleaning time in our home. On a school schedule, it is much easier to devote time to such things when the course load is light. Now is the time we do a deep cleaning, repair, paint, and re-do around the house. This past week has seen all the curtains and blinds removed and washed with hot soapy water, every nook and cranny scrubbed clean, small repairs here and there, and now ripped up carpets and a fresh coat of paint for the spare room (which also happens to be the sewing room). What is now the spare/sewing room had previously been a boy's room, with Toronto sports team paraphernalia on the walls, a very worn carpet, and a neon yellow closet. It was definitely time for a change! I love to paint, and ripping up carpets is oddly satisfying, so this has been great fun for me. The cleaning isn't so much, but it must be done. Everyone chips in, so it's much more enjoyable and quick.

Today I took a little break from the painting to spend time with my good friend Janet.. some toddler games in the park with her oldest..

..and visit with her youngest and the owner of this tiny fist. It was a very nice break!

Janet has recently moved nearby, and I am so glad. We have been friends since the sixth grade. She's definitely one of the good ones! It is so nice to be able to walk over in about 15 minutes, although I do have to admit to stealing a ride over today. I can't wait for more park visits and hopefully a picnic or two with her this summer!

At home, I enjoyed the first raspberries of the season along with a few ripe strawberries from the hanging baskets. I love being able to walk into the yard and pick a yummy snack!

Can you tell I had been painting?

I will post some before and after pictures of the room soon, although I have many projects in mind for it so it wont be completely finished for a while. There will be a lot of sewing in my near future!

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Canada Day.

Every year on Canada Day, Jer and I watch the fireworks display put on by one of our local parks. We have a secret parking spot a little ways away, and we watch through the trees, surrounded by complete darkness aside from the fireflies putting on their own light show in the field before us. It's quite spectacular! I really like this little tradition of ours.

Now at home, I can still hear fireworks and celebrating going on in the background. Lola is not a fan!

A very happy Canada Day to those celebrating!