Wednesday, 27 May 2020

Yellow Wood Sorrel

A pretty little plant has established itself in the gravel next to the AC unit.  The tiny yellow flowers love the sunshine but put themselves to bed if it's rainy, or at night. The leaves are shaped like shamrocks.  What could it be?
I consulted Professor Google and found that this is Yellow Wood Sorrel, oxalis stricta, a plant native to North America, and guess what.... it is edible!  Of course, I had to try it and chomped on some leaves, and it has a sour lemony flavour caused by the presence of oxalic acid.  It is sometimes called "sourgrass".  Both leaves, flowers and seedpods are edible.  A sprig or two of this plant can be used as a tasty addition to a salad, and the leaves can be used to make a flavoured drink that is similar in taste to lemonade.  Both the leaves and the flowers close up at night and open again in the morning.

Additional important note: It's grandson Isaac's birthday today... he is 11! Have a Happy Day, Isaac!

Saturday, 23 May 2020


A friend with a large rhubarb patch called me and said "It's ready! Come and get some!"
So I did.
Rhubarb is classified as a vegetable, but is generally used as a fruit in desserts and jams.  It's strange that the stalks can be eaten, but the roots and leaves are poisonous and contain oxalic acid.
When I was a child, there was nothing better than to sit on the ground next to the rhubarb with a bowl of sugar and dip the young rhubarb stalks and eat them raw. Sour but yummy!
So this is what I did with the rhubarb.....
Rhubarb crumble. I had some for dessert. Good with a scoop of icecream, but even better with lashings of custard!

Thursday, 21 May 2020

Random pictures and High Drama

Coronavirus life goes on.... I'm still staying at home, although I bravely ventured in my mask to the early morning seniors hours grocery store this morning to stock up with supplies. Stores and services are gradually starting to open up and restrictions are gradually easing, but I hope things don't move too fast.... we are not ready for "normal" yet.  We finally have some lovely weather which will encourage people out of their houses.

I've been baking.    Coronavirus bread?
Cleaning up the back yard...... Coronavirus dandelions?
I have been watching the buds get bigger and bigger on this gorgeous "Yellow Bird" magnolia bush.... no leaves yet but only the blossoms. The leaves come later.
High Drama around the pond today. Fat cat Minnie, who belongs to a neighbour, was intent on stalking something moving in the grass.  I stood and watched for a while while she slowly wiggled her way forward and then she suddenly pounced as fast as lightning, and then there was a little squealing chipmunk in her mouth.
I had no idea fat cat Minnie could move at the speed of sound but she did!
Minnie decided to take her prize home, but luckily my neighbour interceded before she could go inside, and the chippy's luck changed as Minnie dropped him.  Chippy dashed for safety up a nearby tree with Minnie in close pursuit, but chipmunks climb trees faster than fat cats, so Minnie lost her plaything and sat at the bottom of the tree looking up with a determined look in her eye.
Here's the poor little chap, sitting on a branch keeping an eye on Minnie.

Minnie kept watch at the base of the tree for a while but eventually went home for her dinner.  I hope the chippy got over his shock and went home to tell his family all about it.  Life can be dangerous out there!

Friday, 8 May 2020


I have taken a different direction with creativity this week. As everyone is aware, our hospital staff and care workers are in desperate need of PPE.... that is personal protective equipment. A friend has been organizing women with sewing machines into an army creating some of the garments that are needed.
I have been sewing scrub caps for nurses.... so far have sewn 24 of them this week. No quilting projects on the go right now so I have been using up my stash of baby quilting fabric.
Each cap has a little bit of elastic sewn into the back to keep it snug. I ran out of elastic, so I put the word out that I needed more... and the sewing community provided! Now I have more than enough elastic, but I'm fast running out of fabric. I may have to send out another SOS.
Yes, it's all extremely undeniably over-the-top pink! I hope the nurses like pink.

Sunday, 3 May 2020

Spring Sunshine at last!

Finally, the month of May has delivered some blue skies and sunshine. The temperature got up to 21C for the first time since October 2019, and I sat out on the deck wearing summer clothes! WOOHOO!
Last fall over 200 daffodil bulbs were planted on the slopes around the pond. I have been anxiously watching those tiny green shoots appear above the ground, and getting taller each day. Buds started to appear but the weather was cold and windy and we even saw some snowflakes in April so the buds stayed tightly closed. But in the sunshine today.... WOW! Gorgeous.

My two artist groups have been on hiatus since March due to the recommendations for social distancing, so I have been playing with art at home. I have't actually tackled any serious painting, as I don't seem to be able to raise up enough inspiration or motivation. And our annual Art Show and Sale has been cancelled due to Covid-19.
However I have been playing with colours. I've been watching videos on line and have been impressed with a British artist called Dan Tirels who paints with plastic shopping bags, so I thought I'd have a go too. Make plastic shopping bags useful. Here are my efforts.

One afternoon last week I was playing with my home made gelli plate.... made of gelatin and glycerin... printing on Chinese rice paper. The faces are image prints taken from an old Vogue magazine. The bird is stencil cut out of mylar.  The paints are cheap dollar store acrylic paints. 

More prints to come as the gelli plate process is a lot of fun and keeps me busy all afternoon. Many of these prints have found a home in a pretty little book made of hand made paper that I bought at a thrift shop a few years ago.
I knew that little book would come in handy! It's going to be my Covid-19 memory book.