Thursday, July 30, 2015

end july update, making comfrey/plantain/heal-all salve, drying borage and chamomile flowers for tea...and a really gorgeous day after all the rain!

we got a lovely surprise when we got up this morning - a gorgeous day!

we got a ton of rain yesterday and the day before - great for the garden especially when followed by a bright and sunny day! jam collected chamomile flowers for drying for tea.

i collected borage flowers for drying for tea.

 i put the flowers on a screen on the deck, put another screen on top in order to let the bugs get free - and voila! the beginning of our dried teas for over the winter.

i will harvest the flowers every couple of days for the next month and a half.

i also harvested heal-all flowers (also known as self-heal).

the previous owner had planted a variety of healing herbs and they pop up in the weirdest of places. i am just glad that we have them.

here are the heal-all flowers laying on their screen to let the bugs get away.

here is plantain - a common weed that is very beneficial for your health. i harvested a pile of plantain, too.

i also harvested a bunch of comfrey leaves and flowers. what am i making? heal-all/comfrey/plantain salve. i made a ton of comfrey salve last year, and a ton of heal-all this year i am making the combination salve with the plantain added in.

after picking your flowers and leaves and giving the bugs a chance to get off, rinse all of your leaves and flowers. put them in a big pot that is used only for making salves and soaps. dump as much virgin olive oil to completely cover them with an extra inch.

heat the oil to almost a boil, stir and turn off the stove. come back in 15 mins, heat the oil to almost a boil, stir and turn off the heat. do this all day long. at the end of the day, let the oil cool and then put it in a cool spot for overnight. i'll finish the process tomorrow and do a post about it.

we went down to the river today. it is about a quarter mile walk to the river so going down and coming back is a 1/2 mile walk every day. on top of all the physical work that we do around here, plus running and jumping and screeching like children in the sprinkler and the rain, dancing, and walking down to the river and having our dips several times a day is great exercise!

because of so much rain we have had over the last few days - this is what we had to walk to just to get to the river!

it was freekin' freezing! but also such a hot, beautiful day that it was worth it jumping in and swimming around! whenever i dive into the river i always say in my mind "thank you God. thank you river". i love that river so much. and because the ocean flows into it, it is very salty and delicious. i love that river. so does jambaloney.

here's a beautiful caterpillar enjoying himself and suntanning on a leaf.

our buddy who lives on the mainland of nova scotia, eagergridlessbeaver, came up with an awesome way to keep the deerflies from biting. check out his post as his beautiful wife A models his creation and does so just perfectly!

basically - his great idea was to put a cup on your head with tree tanglefoot smeared all over the cup. and the cup HAS to be blue. here is a pic of the tanglefoot.

jambaloney drilled 2 holes in the cup and put a string through the holes and tied it to an elastic to make a crazy chin-strap to keep the cup on his head. then he smeared the tanglefoot all over the cup. needless to say, A's look was much fancier!

here is the cup after only 15 minutes of being outside.

eventually there were 30-40 deerflies on the cup. jam periodically took the cup off in order to squish the deerflies so that they didn't suffer for too long. he did not get bit once while wearing the cup. it's cruel and horrible and i feel terrible about it - but when you are covered in welts from deerfly bites - something has to give!

much thanks to egb for such a great, crazy, horrible idea that works!

check out all of the pea flowers - woohoo!

we are now referring to the greenhouse as the jungle! i swear - it's a jungle in there!

these are my piquante peppers that my friend Dani sent me the seeds of all the way from South Africa!

and here are the bird's eye chili peppers from seeds that she also sent!

this is a green pepper plant that we overwintered.

these are some tomatoes in the greenhouse...

and these are some tomatoes in the yard.

i can't wait to start canning them - woohoo!

here's some beautifully-coloured rose buds.

here's today's harvest:

a daikon radish, a broccoli head, some broccoli leaves, some pak choi, some garlic scapes. all of which became a delicious stirfry. with ginger/teriyaki pork and some fresh fruit - deelish.

it's been an awesome day for us. more rain expected for tomorrow - but that's a good thing for the garden. followed by a gorgeous sunny weekend. you can be sure we'll be down at the river!

Tuesday, July 28, 2015

community centre dance on saturday, strawberries and pickled hot peppers!

so, last saturday night we had our community centre dance - what a hoot!there weren't a lot of people but that never bothers us as even if it only our core crew - we still have a blast. plus our friend I, who hasn't been out in a dog's age, was there.  we all chatted and danced and laughed about stupid stuff like we always do. me and I started pretending that we were playing different instruments to different songs and everyone laughed at us and thought we were being ridiculous - which we were - but goodness we couldn't stop laughing!!!! as an example of our complete silliness - the song "Cotton-eyed Joe" came and on we were singing it and playing our banjoes together. the song goes "where did you come from, where did you go, where did you come from Cotton-eyed Joe". after the first chorus, I looked at me quizzically and asked "why does it matter where he came from?", and then she was taking a sip of her beer and i answered "well, he must have come from somewhere!" - she burst out laughing trying not to spit her beer all over the table and that just set me off and the two of us were screeching and crying we were laughing so hard! i tried to explain it to the others at the table but they just didn't get it! we were silly like that all night!

my besty c, who hurt her finger at her surprise party the night before (see previous post below), ended up going into emergency for a tetanus shot early saturday afternoon and didn't get out until 10:30ish texted our friend s that she wouldn't be coming to the dance. we were all disappointed, but she had just had a shot and was given antibiotics and it is over an hour drive from the hospital so she wouldn't have made it before midnight anyway. so, in her honour, we all did shots of baja rose and then danced to her favourite song. 

needless to say the shenanigans went on until we closed the place, cleaned up and left. it was an awfully fun weekend!

anyway - check out our first 8 strawberries! woohoo!

we just ate them plain and they were soooo delicious! we have another 8 or 9 out there just starting to colour. we aren't expecting a huge load of them as this is their first year in the ground - but next year - it's strawberry city!!! local strawberries are out now and they are delicious too! here's a fruit salad with yogurt and honey with strawberries, canteloupe, nectarines and mint - yummeh!

check out this harvest of peppers!!!

these are from the 14 pepper plants that we over-wintered - it's amazing to be harvesting hot peppers at this time of year! so you know we'll be trying to find places to overwinter our peppers this winter! the peppers are hungarian hot wax and big bombs.

those peppers were turned into refrigerator hot peppers for jam - he loves them!

it's been raining like mad all day long which is great for the garden! and great for us as we have not had to deal with watering the garden very much during june and july. it looks like it is going to be a rainy week followed by a beautiful, sunny weekend - also good for the garden. so that's the update. off to check blogs in a bit!

Monday, July 27, 2015

my besty c's surprise birthday party on friday - what a hoot!

so let's back it up to friday. it was my besty c's surprise 50th birthday party and a surprise it was! her actual birthday is june 6 but that is in the middle of fishing season. she is a supervisor at LobstersRUs, her husband and all of her family work on the actual boats or are part of the loading and unloading crew. so there was no way of having her party then. her husband, our other besty b, called me a few weeks ago to say that there would be a surprise party for her. the ladies of our sister community of fourchu went down to the hall earlier in the day and made up a ton of sandwiches. all of the rest of the women in our 2 communities were to make a sweet to bring.

we hadn't been down to chase the ace in several months because jambaloney has to do remote work every night for LobstersRUs. but i called my besty c and said that we could make it this past friday because lobster season was over (but crab season is still going). she was thrilled to say the least! and normally when we go to chase the ace, we go to c&b's early, hang out, yak, catch up - and then jambaloney and b head down to open the hall but me and c stay at her house to chat just between the two of us. so, there was nothing amiss when b said "jam, it's time to go open the hall". and c was none the wiser.

the plan was for me to take c down to the hall at about 7:15 and then surprise her with the party. but, jam came back from the hall at about 7:00 - came in the door and said "c - can you get me a beer? there's like 3 people at the hall and i'm not standing around!". so c of course got him a beer and then the 3 of us sat at the table yakking about all kinds of stuff and had a really good time! jam had been sent back from the hall to make sure that c didn't come down until after 7:30.

so, it's 7:30 and i say "OMG! we need to get moving!". then each of us had to go to the bathroom to pee. i was the last to go and while i was in the bathroom i can hear c and jam laughing up a storm. i come out of the bathroom and c has a hoody-sweater for me because i had forgotten my jacket and asked her if i could borrow one of hers. so apparently, she got a hoody that had never been worn for me. when she showed it to jam - he laughed his guts out and said there was no way in heck that i would ever wear it!!! so the two of them were cackling about this while i was in the bathroom. when i came out of the bathroom - c held up the hoody and said "would you wear this? it's never been worn". i saw it was a beautiful lemon, butter lemon hoody with fancy little flowers on it and fell in love with it. i said "of course i would wear that" and hugged her and thanked her. she said that jam burst out laughing when she showed it to him because i never wear yellow. which is true. but this hoody had such a beautiful flower design, i loved it on site!

so anyway - it's 7:45, we climb in c's car and head down to the hall which is exactly a 30 second drive...and we all notice that the parking lot is full of cars! c says "i've never seen the hall so packed - what's going on?" i said "well, it's a nice weekend and the gaelic festival is going on - maybe it's just a lot of cottagers". jam said "holy moly - there was only 3 people there when i left - i don't know". she had NO CLUE! ZERO! NONE!

we walked in to the hall and there must have been over 75 people there!!! and our 2 communities, if you count the children, only total about 60!!! we walked in and everyone yelled "SURPRISE" - she stopped dead in her tracks and i squeezed and hugged her from behind and she was speechless! her sister from away was down and she didn't know it so that made her very happy! and a bunch of her family were there too! everyone hugged her and everyone was smiling and she was just amazed. she told me later that she couldn't believe that we had all pulled it off without her knowing.

a big table of sandwiches and sweets were set up and everyone enjoyed a nice snack. she was the darling of the party and had to bounce between all of the full tables and then, when everyone had finished eating, we re-arranged the tables and the party ensued! it was awesome! jam set up the music system and made sure that the first 2 songs were her 2 favourite songs! they are our 2 favourite songs to dance to and whenever i hear the beginning beats of either song at any dance - i hear a yell "KYMBER" and then i have to run from wherever i am and dance with her! i love dancing to those 2 songs with her!

we started the party off right! and a party it was! she had a wonderful time!

we had to leave at about 11pm because i was sick as a dog! i had woken up friday morning with swollen glands in my throat, a hoarse voice and near dying. i couldn't take a half of a benadryl because i knew i would have to drink my wine at c's party. so i made it through the day, made it through getting her to the party, made it through dancing a couple of songs but then i was dying. i was sweating and clammy, had a fever and chills, and - HAD to make it out the next night to our community centre dance - arghghghgh!

so i knew my besty was having fun with her family and her friends and got her permission to leave after i danced with her one more time! then we came home, i took a swig of nyquil (something i hate doing) and slept all night and half of the day!

i called my besty when i woke up and she said she had an awesome party and that it was such a great surprise! i was soo happy for her!

however - she had somehow managed to slam her pinky finger in the hall door when they were closing it up! ohhh man! one of our EMT's was still there and told her she needed stitches but she wouldn't go to the hospital (it was 2:00am in the morning and the hospital is over an hour away!). so they bandaged her up and she went home and slept.

when i spoke to her the next morning she was going to see her sister who is a retired nurse. i told c to let her sister have a look and see if she needed stitches or a tetanus shot. her sister said that she did so c went to the hospital, waited 5 hours and then got properly bandaged and a tetanus shot.

awwww! the poor thing! but she did have an awesome time and it was an awesome party! and like everything that happens around here - there's always a story! bahahahahah!

stay tuned as tomorrow i will tell the story of our saturday night dance! another hoot for sure!

kids - after 2 nights out in a row after being sick for weeks - geeeesh! but i had such a good time both nights - it's worth it!

my besty c got the surprise of her life and then paid for it the next day by having to go and get a tetanus shot - bahahahah! but this was one of the best surprise parties that i have ever attended because she was truly surprised! and gracious! i love the people here!

Thursday, July 23, 2015

a quick update as we'll be busy all weekend!

after several days of a low pressure system sitting on top of us, and lots of the rain - the sky finally broke open this afternoon just as jambaloney came home from work today.

it's such a beautiful sky!

i had a bunch of volunteer borage come up in the greenhouse so the other day jambaloney dug us a nice hole in the front yard and we transplanted all of the borage plants into the new "borage garden".

as you can see, i took the pic before we finished the rock wall around it!

borage is one of the few plants in the world that is truly blue. the flowers are edible and quite sweet. i like to include borage flowers in our home-carbonated drinks, like our rosewater, sharab ward and cordials. we have noticed that all types of bees love borage and our borage plants always sound like they are buzzing.

woohoo - pea flowers - soon we'll be eating peas!

we like to take breaks when we are working in the garden and we do so by walking around the garden and looking at each bed and plant. we also like to take a handfull each of peas and snack on them raw when we take breaks. i can't wait until we can do that again!

tons of blurry baby tomatoes on only 4 of our plants - we have 80 plants!!! it's going to be an awesome tomatoe canning year - i can't wait!

here's a mutant radish that is purple at it's root and seems to be a cross between a daikon radish and a normal radish???

i have no idea? but when we harvest him (after he goes to seed as he is in flower right now) - we'll figure out what he is.

finally we are seeing some signs of some actual carrots - they have taken forever to grow this year!

now it looks like this out -

a high pressure system is kicking that low pressure system out and good riddance! the air is clear and light and delicious.

speaking of delicious - our absolute favourite pasta in the world:

made with home-canned tomatoes, tons of garlic, tons of black pepper, tons of fresh basil, parsley and chives from the garden and for jambaloney - hungarian hot wax peppers. he puts only a little fresh-shaved parmesan on his whereas as i add tons - i love parmesan.

anyway - we have chase the ace tomorrow night and then our summer dance is on saturday - woohoo! it's going to be an awesome weekend and we will definitely need a few days to recover!

i hope that you all have a great weekend!

Tuesday, July 21, 2015

katiyja update

we went to visit our neighbour e  (and she's another of our besties!) on sunday! we went to meet our new puppy Katiyja. her and her brothers are almost 3 weeks old.

here she is with jambaloney....notice that they both have the same blue eyes.

we spent time with j and h - we have known j for several years now and we love her to death! she is simply gorgeous! we also spent time with h and we love her as well. jambaloney went to the vfd meeting this month and h also went and brought baby t. when jambaloney came home he said he had an awesome time sitting with h and that if there was ever a baby he wanted to steal it would be little baby t!!! she is so alert and still just a tiny baby! we loved playing with her.

back to little katiyja.

they all have been calling her by her name so that she recognizes it.

here's a pic of her and her 2 brothers flomped on the floor sleeping.

katiyja is in front and then her two brothers. none of them could walk very well...they all kept splaying their legs and falling down - bahahahaha! their mother even came in to feed them while we there - we felt honoured that she trusted us.

we had a great time catching up with our besty e and j and h. me, e and j even went out so that i could have a smoke break and laughed and caught each other up on a pile of stuff.

we will be visiting little katiyja (if our neighbour e can stand it) at least once a week so that she can get used to us. and then we will bring her home when e thinks the timing is right.

we all talked about chase the ace on friday and then our community summer dance after everyone is done fishing. it is going to be crazy people. if you don't hear from us for over a week after this weekend - no worries. it just means we are hung over as can be - bahahahah! everyone in our 2 communities looks forward to this dance as we let off a lot of fishing steam!

stay tuned for updates on katiyja!

(oh and as jambaloney NEVER reads my posts - i'll let you in on a secret - i want all 3 puppies - bahahahah!)

Monday, July 20, 2015

fishing backlog for sandy and pioneer p

jambaloney here!!

so i OWE sandy and pioneer p some trouts and they have been having way too much rain...

we have been busy here this year, time flies and with the work i am doing - is mid-july already!

so here are some fishing pics...

 june 08 - we were DAMN lucky we decided against putting tomatoes in the ground the day before based on the frost warning,,, cuz there was frost..

quite a bit!!!

this was about 5:15 am and sun already up

mist on the water...

but most of it already gone with the sun!

not a ripple...

as above, so below...

the water was pretty high - the brook was swollen

heading back...

here are your fish guys - SHARE!!!!

june 14 - i am up a little later - this is 6:15  ;-))

some pretty impressive cloud formations..

and a loon on the nest!! don't know if it is mom or dad, loons swap off..

 heading back...

beaching the boat....

MORE trouts to share!!!!

june 18, up late AGAIN!!!

super bright on the creek !!!

and the river...

one last round of SHARING trout for sandy and pp!!!

and a gorgeous sunset...

so i am sorry i haven't posted much - one thing i have been trying to stay on this year is weeding - it is a  constant job if you wanna get it done - we have more planted beds and the greenhouse - but 2 weeks ago i started hilling the potatoes...

in DESPERATE need of tire #2!!!

we added to all beds this year and added 8 more tires... we ran out of soil - there is a local guy who mixes 1/2 poop and half plant stuff and cooks it - here is a good load...

next day i weeded...

and topped up after tomorrow - i have to go back and finish the job..

next up - guerrilla fishing with help from my good friend d and with a nod to my dad.

til then hope you are having a good summer so far - cheers!