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Archive for May, 2013

Last month, at the show in Toronto, we attended a concert by Heather Dale.

Heather Dale

She is an independent musician, so this was my first time hearing her. Her work has a very troubadour aspect to it. Many of the lyrics are inspired by Arthurian legends and other historical figures. I was especially struck by “Joan”, about Joan of Arc. The sound has clear Celtic roots and reminded me of the vibrant Newfoundland music scene. At this concert, it was just her and her partner, and they played a mix of instruments, from keyboard to bodhrán. It was a great show and we went home with a couple of cd’s in hand. You can check the music out for yourself. Many of the songs we heard are on the album “Perpetual Gift” and it can be downloaded for free, on her website. It’s always great to find new music to love and I wanted to share!

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I have to say that the cherry is just so much prettier than the plum trees.

sour cherry tree, May 2013

sour cherry tree, May 2013

It’s hard to say exactly why it is, but it may have something to do with the shape of the branches and flowers. It also seems to set a few leaves, in a decorative manner, around the flowers. Even the way the proto-cherries emerge from the flower remains is better looking than the plums. I’m also a bit surprised at how fast the fruits are growing. It has set a surprising number and they are bigger than I expected at the is point. (the plums are so much smaller, right now) We’re planning on wrapping it, to try and keep the birds off. Last year, the few cherries that had set were stripped to their pits, pretty much as soon as they had a hint of red colour. I’d like to get at least enough of the sour cherries for a tart or pie, but we’ll have to wait and see how many make it.

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***This event has been cancelled. I will repost if/when we pick a new date for it.***

 

Etsy is having a worldwide craft party on June 20th.  It sounded like a fun idea and, when I talked to the Perth County Visitors Association, they thought so too! They have a great space, in the Visitors centre and we will be making jewellery from 7 to 10pm! The plan is to share a bunch of different ways to make new pieces you will actually wear, from the older bits and pieces that are lurking in the bottom of the jewellery box. If you don’t have any broken or dated bits, you can also bring along buttons, fabric, feathers or leather pieces and we’ll work with those. Take something old and turn it into something you can wear and enjoy instead of keeping it stuffed in a drawer! You can sign up at the Etsy Eventbrite page. It’s free to sign -up but we will probably be charging $5 at the door, for supplies. Everyone is welcome and if you have any questions please feel free to contact me and I’ll try to help.

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There is a large trench, along the border of the store and house properties.

honey berry plant, May 2013

honey berry plant, May 2013

It was cut in when the house was connected to the towns new sewer system. I had dreams of a blueberry patch along it but that hasn’t worked out too well. It turns out that rabbits consider the branches to be a tasty, winter-time snack. They’ll eat all of the new growth, as well as anything else they can reach so the plants get a bit smaller each year. On top of that, the birds are extremely determined about eating all the berries before they fully ripen. Since it’s not the best soil, and over the sewer pipe, I did want to stay with shallow rooted, production shrubs. With the blueberries being a failure, last year we decided to try some haskapberries. We put in a group of nine, and they were little more than sticks. With the drought conditions, they got watered, but not as often as I would have liked for new transplants. As a result, I was pleasantly surprised to see some vigorous growth, this spring. All of them have popped up with new branches and lots of leaves. A few have even set flowers. We’ll see if the birds let us sample the fruit!

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I just got back from the yearly sale at Fotiou frames.

11x14 frames

11×14 frames

It’s their once-a-year blow-out of discontinued moldings. In the past, this sale usually is on over the winter, but it’s happened a bit later this year. Not only did we get some beautiful new stock moldings, but also picked up a select few assembled frames. They will make standard frames out of the off-cut pieces that build up, and that means incredible deals. These two are 11”x14”, on the inside. Hard to believe, but the moldings are five inches wide! All the assembled ones are one-of-a-kinds, of course, so I’m not sure if they’ll stick around long enough for me match them to some art, or if they’ll find homes on their own!

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The pair of plum trees seem to have fully settled in.

plum flowers, May 2013

plum flowers, May 2013

(and don’t seem to have had any set-backs from last years drought, unlike a few other things) We’re keeping our fingers crossed that there won’t be a late frost, that kills the flowers, like last year. I have hopes of getting more than one plum, per tree, this round. The one we did get was delicious, so it would be good to have enough for eating. At least there are lots of flowers, and the pollinators are hard at work. We’ll just have to wait and see how many set, and if the trees are old enough to keep a decent number until ripeness.

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I’ve continued to try and make more of the classical creatures out of the stuffies.

altered stuffed animal, "seahorse"

altered stuffed animal, “seahorse”

The hard part is finding the parts. It’s one thing to go through the collection and then match parts just based on how the work together but it’s another thing to go for a specific combination. Not only do I have to find the right parts but they have to be in the same scale and I like to have colours that look good together. It’s much harder! One idea I’d had for a while to do was a “seahorse” or Hippocamp. This one isn’t quite perfect, the tail should be more of a serpent, but I’m still pretty happy with it, as a first attempt.

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