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...a glimpse into life on Vancouver Island, needle felting, photography, food, gardening, etcetera...etcetera
"Happiness always looks small when you hold it in your hands, but let it go, and at once you learn how big and precious it is."
Maxim Gorky

Saturday, August 21, 2010

Chopsticks 101...

 Chinatown. 
12 noon.
Hungry.
From inside the Ocean Garden Restaurant things seem pretty normal.
And then...the waitress hands us these!
Hhhmmmm...lets see...
O.K...stabbing works well...
Just..hold...on...long...enough...
  YES!
Next one?
Darn these things are slippery!
Wait a minute...
GOT IT!
K. My turn now...
Like this?
...maybe not...try again...
One...
Two...
Three!!! 
How about the old 'one in each hand trick...
Yup that works not bad either...
Any way you look at it, the food makes it into the belly...
Now if we can only figure out these addresses.....



Friday, August 20, 2010

Song for Friday...oh the open road!

What could be more lovely than traveling like this on the open road!
I always wanted a caravan and a big dapple grey horse...friends like badger, mole and  toad...
AAhhh...what a life!
 Hope your travels are just as fun...have a great weekend!

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Thoughts on foxes and a movie review...

There's something about foxes that I love.
Maybe it's those lovely black stockings they have...
perhaps it's the slyness of their character...
those little perky ears and gorgeous copper eyes...
The fact that we don't have them here may be of some appeal.
No need to worry about them in the hen house.
I suppose the image of a fluffy, black tipped fox tale, bouncing through the countryside can be part of the romance..although the only time I have seen one was, unfortunately, dead on an Irish motorway.
I've even needle felted them to get a closer feel..
Given them a friend to hang out with...
Loved the movie 'The Fantastic Mr Fox'.
I have just ordered this precious necklace from http://myselvagedlife.etsy.com on etsy...
It reminded me of the door knocker on my great grandmothers house...hmmm...maybe that's where it all began...? I loved walking up to her door and lifting the heavy fox head, letting it's dark patina weight knock down on the door, announcing our visit.
So when I saw this movie that my nieces had picked out for their sleepover, I was intrigued.
It's the most beautifully filmed movie about a young girl, who's backyard is the hills, woods, creeks and mountains. Her obsession?
Wild foxes.
Some parts of the film can be a bit difficult for the young and weak at heart, BUT it is rated for general audiences and has some valuable lessons.
The scenery is breath taking.
Like I said, it is rated general and a lovely tale for young and old.
So here's to those gorgeous red heads.


In the garden...

I was out wandering around the garden yesterday and took some shots of what's going on...
Have you ever seen a bug like this on your plants?
 Never fear!
It's just a baby lady bug...they are especially fond of hops.
Yup, the stuff you put in beer.
You can see them in all different stages of development...
 Already working hard at keeping the bad bugs away...
And working on growing some spots too...
There's still a little cluster of bees leftover from the big swarm we had on this post in the garden.
I'm working on 'adopting' them and getting them into a hive of my own for the winter.
Sunflowers always make me smile.
They have such individual characters...
There's a reason they call it a butterfly bush...
 Even though we just had a week of extremely hot weather, today there is a coolness about the air...
the season is definitely changing.
I absolutely  love autumn.
Pulling on my Aran sweater, crunching through piles of leaves, canning and thinking of projects for those rainy days in the studio...
Sometimes change feels good.






Monday, August 16, 2010

Old and older...

Along with the lovely water of Sproat Lake, are some historical points of interest.
One of them being so ancient that no one knows much about them.
They are the petroglyphs known as K'ak'awin.
 This panel of rock wall is about 30 feet long by 12 feet high and comes straight up out of the lake.
The carvings are of mystical sea creatures...perhaps ancient lake monsters?
Carved into the stone, probably with other stone tools. 
They stand the test of time and hold the mystery of tales told long ago.
As we were walking towards them, I heard a little boy say "why didn't they just use paper?".
The father started to explain....."no paper in those days".
So after a long hot day of swimming and hiking we headed to the other side of the lake...
 This pub and marina was probably built in the 30's and is home to some really sweet, rickety old cabins...
One of them, obviously houses a creative gardener...
or perhaps just a giant spider lives here...
The lady in the pub said that the owner of the marina and their families take up residence here for the summer.
Sounds like a pretty sweet way to spend a summer...


Sunday, August 15, 2010

Where the big one lives...

When it's 34 degrees celcius (about 100 degrees fahrenheit)
and you have a big black dog, 
you want to find somewhere cool, shady and preferably with a body of water somewhere near by...
Past the town of Port Alberni is Sproat lake.
Home to the Mars water bomber.
An incredible forest fire fighting machine.
Where else would you keep a water bomber?
Built in 1935, this monster was used as a transport aircraft by the U.S Army...
I've seen this thing in the air. It's like a bumble bee. You wonder how it even gets up in the air because it's so huge and it seems to fly very slow.
FYI...
It's one of the largest active propeller driven water bombers in the world and is based right here on Sproat Lake. This thing can carry 7,200 US gallons of water, taking only 25 seconds to pick it up from a lake and can make a drop every 15 minutes. It can be in the air within 10 minutes of a call.
Check out this video of its capabilities.
It's really spectacular!

Another marvel on Sproat Lake.
The Tom-o-matic.
He can be at the dinner table within 10 seconds of a call.
Can consume enormous amounts of food,
 still be able to float,
And does the dishes!
Here's his trusty side kick Griffin, who will search out and find any body of water within a 100 miles
as well as sniffing out food anywhere within 50 feet!
Dog cookies are his specialty.
Marvels of the world.