Jack’s Walk

©voyager, all rights reserved

It’s about as perfect as a day can get around here. The sun is shining, the sky is blue, the air is warm with just a gentle breeze and all the growing things are happy. Jack and I took to the woods this morning and this afternoon we’ll be out in the yard. The forecast for the whole weekend is supposed to be just like today, which is perfect. I have an old friend visiting from Cobourg tomorrow and I’m planning a picnic by the lake for us on Sunday. A little homemade potato salad, some lovely crusty rolls with real butter (I’m usually not allowed, but it’s a special occasion), some six bean salad, crudités with a sour cream and bacon dip, fried chicken, a good old chedder, grapes, cherries, watermelon, and a strawberry pie. Yum!

I hope everyone has a good weekend and if you get a chance plan a picnic for yourself.

Jack’s Walk

©voyager, all rights reserved

©voyager, all rights reserved

©voyager, all rights reserved

Jack and I have found a big patch of wild raspberries and we’ve carefully noted the spot so we can return when these lovely flowers have turned into even lovelier berries. They’re on a well-used trail, though, and I’m sure that Jack and I aren’t the only ones who’ve noticed them. Hmm…we might have to start getting up earlier in the morning.

Jack’s Walk

©voyager, all rights reserved

Jack and I went to the lily pad pond today to check out our new mosquito wear. It’s clothing impregnated with permethrin that’s supposed to keep the skeeters away. If the tag can be believed, the chemical coating should last through 70 washings. I have a hat and short-sleeved shirt and Jack has a jaunty scarf. The only place that Jack gets bitten is his face and ears because even in summer he has a thick coat of fur, so I thought a scarf would be all he needs.

The trail around the pond is always buggy and we normally avoid it in the warm weather, but the best place to test mosquito wear is where the mosquitoes are so off we went in the name of science. We certainly chose the right place – there were lots and lots and lots of mosquitoes and, considering the conditions, the clothing performed well. I came away with about a dozen bites on my hands, so a long-sleeved shirt would have been a better choice, but I had no bites on my face or neck and only one or two near my elbows. I always wear long pants and socks because of ticks so I had no bites on my legs. Jack fared about as well with one or two nose bites and two bites on an ear near the scarf, which surprised me. I’ll certainly use the clothing when we trail walk over the summer and we’ll even come back to the pond, but next time I’ll use a bit of something else to protect my hands and maybe a dab on the big boy’s ears. Jack really loves the pond because he can chase frogs and get muddy. You know, the good stuff in life.

Plant Portraits

Opus has a new philosophy for photographing flowers and the result is stunning. I couldn’t be more delighted to share them with all of you.

…the spring and early summer has been very good for macro plant photography.  I have started thinking of these as plant portraits, rather than just macro photography. …Hope you enjoy seeing them as much as I enjoyed capturing them.  

Clover, ©Opus, all rights reserved

Wild Carrot, ©Opus, all rights reserved

Jack’s Walk

The Lily Pond, ©voyager, all rights reserved

This is going to be a strange year for Jack and I. Usually, at about this time of year we pack up the car and head down the highway to the east coast where we spend our summers by the sea, but this year we’ve decided to stay home. My mother’s health has been deteriorating and even though she lives in a nursing home I still worry. I’m an only child so I don’t have a sibling to call on for help. I begged for a brother or sister when I was young, but to no avail. Too bad, an extra pair of eyes and hands would be nice at this stage of life.

When we’re down east in Perce we stay with Mr. V’s mum who is 93 and has been living alone. This mum is still a going concern. Well into her 90’s now she still manages everything well and on her own. She shops and cooks and still bakes cookies because who wants store-bought. She also still drives, irons, gardens and has just found herself a rather nice, very old-fashioned and sweet boyfriend who will be spending the summer with her. He’s just a kid at 78. That means just a bit less worry for us. Our east coast mum will have a wonderful summer even if we can’t be there to share it with her.

Jack hasn’t ever spent a whole summer in Ontario so I’m going to see if I can find a few new trails to keep him engaged. Me too. I like to be outside and I don’t what I’m going to do with myself without my annual hunt for seaglass.

Jack’s Walk

©voyager, all rights reserved

It’s been an overcast and humid day here, but at least it didn’t get overly hot. Still, neither Jack nor I like the humidity so we went out early to avoid the warmest part of the day. We just went to our familiar forest, but a pack of 4 shaggy, black and white springer spaniels livened things up a bit. They bounded up at us from behind, ran a few circles around Jack – all going in different directions and then bounded off down the path without stopping to take a breath. It all happened so fast that Jack didn’t get a chance to say Hi or Bye and he loves to say both. I think he felt cheated so I gave him an extra milk-bone and soon enough the world was right again and off we went.

Purple Iris

Mondays are always better with flowers and Avalus has sent us some gorgeous Iris to help us start the week.

There was a beautiful patch of irises that attracted many visitors.

©Avalus, all rights reserved

©Avalus, all rights reserved

Like this bumblebee,  just caught while taking off…

©Avalus, all rights reserved

And this leaf bug.

©Avalus, all rights reserved

 

Jack’s Walk

©voyager, all rights reserved

©voyager, all rights reserved

I was off helping a friend today, so Jack and his daddy had a boys day without me. They are well-trained scouts, though, and upon my return I was told that the poppies are blooming at the end of the street. I grabbed my camera and set out to take a few shots. There are about a dozen flowers in total, but today only one was fully blooming. The rest look set to open tomorrow and I’ll definitely be back to take another look. I can’t resist those blood orange petals or their pompons of purple chenille.

©voyager, all rights reserved

Jack’s Walk

The peonies next door. ©voyager, all rights reserved

Jack and I got a late start today because of rain. I wasn’t really feeling all that energetic either, so we stuck close to home and walked around the neighbourhood. Jack likes to do that every few days so he can keep up with the P-mail. When we’re on a trail I don’t notice that Jack is slow, but in town on a leash Jack dawdles and dithers and takes forever to get all the way around.  It’s his nose. It takes him in all sorts of odd directions, even backwards. He inches along inhaling deeply, seldom looking up and stopping often for an in-depth nosing. Sometimes he licks this or that particular blade of grass and sometimes he lifts his head to sniff the air around him, usually with his mouth open like a cat. He carefully leaves his own news in rationed dribbles on important posts and seldom leaves more than a few drops in any one place, believing that brevity is the soul of wit.