Daughters and Spiders

26 08 2010

Wolf Spider

Last night I was about at the end of my rope, hauling my 3 year old daughter to her bedroom for the umpteenth timeout of the day, when all of a sudden I spot this giant wolf spider on the wall right above her bedroom door!

I accidentally swore to myself, then ran her into the living room. Somehow I managed to catch the thing in a jar and seal the lid on tight. That was so frightening, but it provided a great mental break and comedic interruption of an otherwise rotten day. Composing myself, I called DD into the kitchen for a little spider show and tell. I don’t want her to be afraid of them like I am, so now that it’s safely in a jar we could both take a close look at the thing. I appreciate her innocent fascination.

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Let’s Take A Walk Through Finnerty Gardens

27 04 2008

This past Friday my parents took Jasmine and I for a magical walk through UVic’s famous Finnerty Gardens. The Rhododendrons were in full bloom, as were many other fabulous species.

I last visited with my Grandpa and Grandma Whitbread when I was about 7 years old. I remember picking spent rhodo blooms off the forest floor. I noticed that some were scented, and others were not, and that all Rhododendron flowers were quite sticky. The bright orange ones really caught my eye at the time.

Jasmine slept through most of the walk, but when she did rouse from her snooze, she became infatuated with touching the beautiful blooms. I hope when she’s older she’ll have as much fun in the gardens with her Grammie and Grandpa as I did with mine.





A Cold Winter’s Day – In the Spring

21 04 2008

I’ve heard of April showers, but this is ridiculous. A recent ridge of low pressure brought some seriously frigid arctic air to the area last weekend. Friday we had these giant snowflakes come down in the evening, they were about 2″ across! Saturday morning saw scenes like that of my photo (taken in January/’06), while some areas closer to sea level were still green. The last time we had snow this late in the season was way back in 1955. I heard that Toronto had temperatures in the mid-twenties, which is equally as unseasonable. I’m sure they were gloating in their shorts and sunglasses.

Soon the temperatures will rise, the rain will stop falling, and we’ll wish we had such a surplus of water. Until then, I’ll take what sunny breaks I can get, out in the garden pulling weeds or planting tropicals.

Almost a foot of snow blankets the backyard





The Other Type of Weed

15 04 2008

Weeds, before

Here you see my veggie beds. On the right is the one I’ve been using for the past three years or so to grow mainly tomatoes and squash. On the left is the bed I’ve never used. Full of weeds it sits, making me feel guilty every time I look at it. Today I decided to tackle those weeds. I pulled out my favorite gloves and shovel, and had at ‘er.

Weeds, after

Here’s the bed, now lovingly devoid of weeds. Soon I’ll plant some squash, maybe cucumber, bulb fennel, maybe some peas or beans. The beds are 4′ X 8′ and they sit at the very back of my property. The short fence you see separates this area from the rest of the back yard, which is handy when you have a vegetable loving dog. You can see she’s broken through the fence more than once, we used old wainscoting to temporarily block the hole. She used her teeth to rip the lattice apart, sneaky dog.