Saturday, December 28, 2013

Furry Feline Friends

It's usually Benny who pronks into my blog posts from time to time. Most of you are well acquainted with him but less so with my handsome felines. Skittles and Zephyr were born fourteen years ago, in May and have been a constant joy in my life ever since.

Both of them are very loving, gentle and sweet. Their similarities end there.

Alex with skitty and zephyr
Zephyr is the grey and white one on the right - he is a fearful cat. The day they both came to live with me, the two little fur balls hid under my bed. Zephyr stayed there for about three days, venturing out only for food, water and trips to the litter box.

Skitty, the tabby, stayed under the bed for a few hours then ventured out to play with my shoelaces.

The one in the middle is my son, Alex. He was nine at the time. These days, at 23, he's furrier than both cats put together.

skitty 2

Zephyr loves food, belly rubs and sleep above all else.

Skitty loves all of the above plus sitting on visitors, checking out the dog, chasing imaginary mice throughout the house and being a part of just about everything we do (within reason).


Zephyr talks to us. He will keep a conversation going for a couple of minutes. For every word or phrase we speak to him, he'll reply with a counter-meow.

Skitty yowls at night - for no apparent reason. The boys have a bit of Siamese in them and that seems to be a common trait for that breed. But if we talk to him, he'll just stare back at us as if to say "You're kidding, right?"

skitty 3

 Zephyr is lazy. He rarely seeks us out but is always willing to purr on demand when we go to him.

Skitty is a near-constant companion.


 Zephyr is terrified of the vacuum. As soon as he hears it rolling out of the storage closet, he tears down to the basement to hide.

Skitty follows me around watching the attachment move back and forth and has actually allowed me to vacuum him, on occasion.

skitty 6

 Zephyr is a survivor. He has food smarts. And escape know how.

Skitty is smart. He gets that a woofing, ear-nibbling JRT is not a threat. An annoyance - but not a threat.

Zephyr and Skittles
 Zephyr hisses at Benny every time he is near.

Skitty engages Benny in play and only hisses at him when he's had enough.

where is the paws key
Both of my whiskered boys are beautiful little beings and I'm grateful that they share our home.

I hope every one of you has a wonderful, healthy and Happy New Year. 

Saturday, December 21, 2013


We're having weather issues which have brought about satellite woes over the past 48 hours. Our connection is working at about 10% of an already very slow service - when it's working at all. This makes it very difficult to view blogs and comment. I apologize for that but until things are running more smoothly, I'll be finding myself back in catchup mode again through the holidays.

I hope to get another blog post out in a day or two but it that proves to be impossible, I wish all who celebrate, a very Merry Christmas and a safe, happy holiday. 

Well, it's a marvelous night for a moondance
With the stars up above in your eyes
A fantabulous night to make romance
'Neath the cover of October skies
And all the leaves on the trees are falling
To the sound of the breezes that blow
And I'm trying to please to the calling
Of your heartstrings that play soft and low
And all the nights magic seems to whisper and hush
And all the soft moonlight seems to shine in your blush
~Van Morrison

The white saucer like some full moon descends at last from the clouds of the table above. ~ Harold Monro 

I like to think that the moon is there even if I am not looking at it. ~ Albert Einstein

Moonlight is sculpture. ~ Nathaniel Hawthorne 

moonrising6I've never seen a moon in the sky that, if it didn't take my breath away, at least misplaced it for a moment. ~ Colin Farrell 

The moon is a friend for the lonesome to talk to. ~ Carl Sandburg 

The night walked down the sky with the moon in her hand. ~ Frederic Lawrence Knowles

fire and ice and moon
May you have warm words on a cold evening, a full moon on a dark night and a smooth road all the way to your door. ~ Irish Blessing

moonbeam on water
There is something haunting in the light of the moon; it has all the dispassionateness of a disembodied soul, and something of its inconceivable mystery. ~ Joseph Conrad

fire pit2
One moon lights a thousand forevers. ~ Meng Chiao

The above images are from November's full moon. The lake was freshly iced over and not yet snowed upon. 

Tuesday, December 17, 2013

November Days

"So dull and dark are the November days.
The lazy mist high up the evening curled,
And now the morn quite hides in smoke and haze;
The place we occupy seems all the world."
~ John Clare

Since I tend to be pretty lousy at keeping track of just when some of my photos were taken, I can't always compile some images from the same day. But I know that doesn't really matter to you. Does it? Nah!

So some of these are from different days - especially those which show the lake frozen over in some places and completely liquified in others. But they're all from late November and that's probably good enough. Right? I thought so!

geese on ice
I know what day this is. It's the day after the boat was removed from the dock. It's also early in the day that the the dock was ultimately removed. Ice had formed on the lake but it was mild, and there had been rain. I glanced out the window to see the last of a large gaggle of geese stepping their way past our house.

snow on ice
This was quite clearly a different day. It was actually a few days into the week, once we had our first snowfall. Here you can see some more weather making its way across the bay.

walking toward home
But let's go back in time just a little bit, to a misty day when I took my morning walk. This is the road leading back toward our place. Benny and I walk for about fifty minutes most mornings. We live just around that bend and down a ways.


old fashioned trailer3
About two thirds of the way into my walk, I see this cool, old camper trailer. I often don't bring my camera along on my walks, these days (as I explained before.. weather is often unpredictable and Benny makes handling him and the camera difficult at times - he's not a road-smart dog) but I decided to bring my camera along on this day because I wanted a photo of this relic. To me, it screams early 1960s right down to its colour and curtains. Frank thinks perhaps even the late 1950s. What do you think its vintage is?

old fashioned trailer4
Here, stand back and have another look.

Frank spotted this cute little muskrat hanging out in front of our place, one afternoon. He kept diving under water/ice to grab some vegetation and then sit upon the ice to enjoy it. I used the long lens, and I wasn't excessively far from him but the lighting was so flat that I was unable to get much clarity in these photos.

muskrat and vegetation
He was only mildly cautious and never seemed too bothered by my presence except for one time when I snuck up a bit closer to his spot while he was underwater. The click of the camera startled him when he surfaced and he immediately dove back under. But he quickly returned and got used to my incessant photo taking. Thanks for indulging me, little guy.

muskrat eating possible newt
I had one of those second take moments when I looked at this image. It sure appeared to me that our muskrat friend had caught himself a newt or salamander. The body looked right, and muskrats do indeed include them as part of their diet. But the feet looked wrong. Newts have separate toes on their feet and this thing looks like it has solid disks for feet. Conclusion: It's probably just a very newt-like piece of vegetation.

misty hills
Toward the end of the afternoon (of whatever day we have now morphed into), the fog rolled into the bay, dusting the hills across the way.

late november sunrise
But worry not. Another sunrise will come along before you know it.

More photos in a few days.

Friday, December 13, 2013

Breaking Point and Posts of the Week

We had some interesting weather back in November.

I'm not at all sure that this was officially a microburst or if that's just another word for an intense unexpected wind. But a sudden, mighty wind it was, and it did a bit of damage in its path.

We were sitting in the house when the general quiet of the day was interrupted by a flurry of swirling leaves and bowing branches. We both looked up and gazed out onto the lake which had looked clear and smooth moments earlier.

microburst lake
At this moment - not so much.

We could feel the pressure of the gusts make the house shudder. Later, Frank said that he had heard a crack which he figured was a fallen branch but that sound eluded me.

The whole incident lasted under a minute. Probably fewer than twenty seconds.

microburst goodbye tree
Peeking through the window, we were able to see some brush close to the base of one of the trees bordering our property. This confirmed what Frank thought he'd heard.

mircroburst mostly gone
Up close though, we realized that it wasn't just a branch. It was the whole top portion of the tree.

mircroburst tree down
It lay across the width of our neighbour's driveway. They had left the weekend before to spend the rest of the winter in the city so thankfully, there were no people or vehicles in its path.

mircroburst across the driveway
Standing back a bit, you can see the length of the broken part, the trunk from which it came and the entrance to our kitchen on the right.

microburst casualties
Luckily, there wasn't any significant damage to any other property - ours or the neighbours'.

microburst breaking point
I guess that no matter how mighty you believe yourself to be, everything has its breaking point.

❀  ❀  ❀  ❀  ❀

And now, without further delay, here are the Posts of the Week. The icon below is yours for the taking if your blog post is named as a POTW.



The Meaning of LIFE According to Me
by E. Angelina
at My Magnificent Life

City of Dreams
by Marianne
at Under Wide Suffolk Skies

by Brian
at WaystationOne

Can They Really Compare
by MessyMimi
at MessyMimi's Meanderings

Pointy the Poinsettia
by Jim
at Suldog



Making Waves
by Andy
at Eye Candy

Fogged In
by Laura
at Laura Delegal - Chasing the Light

Shadow on a Wall
by Linda
at The View from Squirrel Ridge

Lemon Drizzle
by Fiona
at Lady Fi

Strong Pull of Quietude
by Laura
at Shine the Divine

It's 5am in O-Town
by Lisa
at Lisa Gorden Photography



Do You Know Who Creeps About in the Dark?
by Jennifer
at Cottage Country Reflections

Elk Watching
by Linda
at To Behold the Beauty



Varicoloured Christmas ChemisTREE
by Nick
at Along These Lines


Please drop by their blogs for a visit and leave a kind comment if you have the time. Also, please feel free to add your own choices (for any blog except this one) for a specific blog post in the comments section below, where others can see them.

Thank you

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Somewhere Else

Everything in life is somewhere else, and you get there in a car. ~ E.B. White

On one of my trips up here before I actually settled in, we took a little drive to a nearby town or two.

This is Whitney, Ontario. It sits at the southern point of Algonquin Park - Canada's oldest provincial park.

Mad Musher
We were late getting started so we stopped at The Mad Musher for lunch. It was rather costly to eat there but the food was decent enough.

chair shadow
The sun poured in through the window prompting me to photograph the shadows across the chair.

Madawaska River Whitney
The other side of that window provided a pretty view of the Madawaska River.

all in one
You know you're in a small town when one small building houses the grocery store, credit union and Sears outlet.

lake kamaniskeg combermere2
This is a lookout point over Lake Kamaniskeg in the town of Combermere. And they really do mean "look out." The edge of the boulder on which we were standing drops off to the highway below. It was a pretty sight but I'm not crazy about heights and this one was pretty vertigo-inducing. Coincidentally, Tom Petty's Free Falling is playing on the radio as I type.

lake kamaniskeg combermere vertigo
One last look in the other direction before we crawl out of here.

best perserve ever
This image will probably make Frank's sister, Theresa smile. One summer day, about four years ago, Theresa, her husband Evan and I took a drive through the towns surrounding their family cottage. We stopped in a few places and looked around at general stores, antique shops and other spots. One of those stops resulted in the purchase of this unusual Jam. It was pale pink (this one, not so much) and the lady in the store suggested we try it on crackers with cream cheese. So we bought some. Theresa and I opened up a bottle of Malbec and dressed up a few crackers as suggested by the lady in the store. We almost finished the whole jar. It was amazing! The problem was that we had no idea where it was that we stopped and found it. I have been on the lookout for it whenever I see homemade jams ever since. So, on this road trip, Frank brought me to a store where he had seen a huge display of homemade jams the week before, and while I was scanning the labels, he spotted this lone jar on a low shelf. It was the last one that they had but after I told the store clerk that I had been looking high and low for this jam, she took the name down and said that she would tell the person responsible for making them and that there would probably be more at some point. Yay!

drive by
Heading back toward home, a drive by shooting of the scenery around us.

clouded full moon
I'm cheating here a bit because this photo was actually taken a few days earlier but who can resist a full moon on the rise over the trees and across the bay? Not I.

More coming up in a few days.

Saturday, December 7, 2013

Dancing With the Heart & Posts of the Week

Dancing with the feet is one thing,
but dancing with the heart is another
~ Unknown

As promised in my previous post, I'd like to introduce you to the little girl who caught my eye at the wedding. She more than had my attention - I could hardly tear my camera away from her while she was out on the dance floor. I don't know her name, nor do I even know who she belongs to but I found her very entertaining. And adorable.

I'm sure you'll agree.

She was a bit tentative at first. She seemed to be sizing up the situation. To dance or not to dance? Am I being watched? Photographed? Do I care? (I was halfway across the room when I snapped these photos so she really wasn't aware of me.)

Before long, she started to move with the music. Feeling the rhythm, she began clapping her little hands and tapping her sparkly feet.

She pirouetted, jumped, bowed and swung. She had the moves, this little one.

She danced alone...

With partners..

And with gusto!

She owned that dance floor.

And she totally rocked it!

This was one little kidlet who danced with her feet and her heart.

❀  ❀  ❀  ❀  ❀

And now, without further delay, here are the Posts of the Week. The icon below is yours for the taking if your blog post is named as a POTW.



by Dianne
at Forks Off the Moment


A Purpose
by Gail
at Louisiana Belle

A Walk in Vienna's Stadtpark
by Merisi
at Merisi's Vienna

I Love You, Mama and Daddy
by Jackie
at Teacher's Pet

Natural Beauty
by Daniel
at The Pixel Collective

by Scott
at Just Used Pixels



Who Are You? Is That a Resolution?
by Tabor
at One Day at a Time



The Raccoon Incident
by Frank Lee MeiDere
at I Don't Give A Damn

A Tale of Thanksgiving and Intrigue, Reprise
by Betsy
at What Makes You Think I Have Cats?

The Real Meaning of Noshavember
by Bone
at If You Read Only One Blog This Year...

by MessyMimi
at Messymimi's Meanderings


Please drop by their blogs for a visit and leave a kind comment if you have the time. Also, please feel free to add your own choices (for any blog except this one) for a specific blog post in the comments section below, where others can see them.

Thank you