Monday, 1 June 2020

Homemaking Mondays: A Touch of Colour


Hello! 

I just love the touch of colour
that fresh flowers give. 
These sunflowers have been blooming for a few weeks now. 
They delight me each day.  
The one variety of dwarf sunflowers we 
planted this year are called
Sunspots. 
Cheerful and long lasting. 
They also have multiple blossoms each.

Once they are done blooming 
I am going to pull them out and plant some other flowers in their place.
I find that having flowers is an important part
of a garden...and not just for the 
beneficial insects. 
I think they bring joy. 


My husband bought me some cut flowers for mother's day.
They lasted a long time and added 
a special touch to our table. 
Sometimes in life we just need beautiful things. 


This past week has been busy with helping my daughter finish her lessons. 
Then there was packing and preparing the house for showings.
Our landlady is so very thoughtful to make the showings on the days 
that we regularly clean so it doesn't put a big burden on us.

It's been raining so much and the trees and other plants are bright green.
The grass is starting to really grow and the perennial flowers are popping up.
I've always been drawn to the bluish kind of flowers, and the lupin are
coming up all over and are so very pretty! 

The plants we have in our garden pots are coming along nicely.  
I look forward to some fresh things as summer comes. 

There has been some other new life in our little habitat. 
The other day we saw a moose and her little new babies 
walk through the water close to our home. 
Then late in the evening (about 11:30pm) 
they came through again and this time 
my daughter got a couple good pictures of them. 
Well..as good as you can with zoom and darkness. 
What a blessing to see them and know that 
the Lord is bringing new life in so many ways.



What brings a touch of colour to your life? 
Colour comes in many forms. 
Fresh flowers and blessings.
Little details often overlooked, 
but all the little things can also bring joy. 

Praying you have a blessed day!

Love and Prayers,
Jennifer

Monday, 25 May 2020

Homemaking Mondays: Taking Time to Enjoy the Day!


Hello! 

Does life just get to be a bit much at times? 
I love how being out in nature seems to comfort and relax me. 
With lots of change happening in our home lately. 
My thoughtful husband took us for a drive to enjoy some of our
favourite places in nature. 

It was a windy day by the lake and the waves were beautiful! 
The sound of them breaking on the shore was 
so restful and I could have stayed there for hours. 

Just up the road from the lake is a river and 
next to that is this cool old cabin. 
Not lived in for a long time and falling down.
It has the call to come explore it. 


The roof is all fallen in, but you can open the door and peek inside. 


I love how the logs are all nestled together and chinked. 
When I was a young girl, I lived in a log home my 
father had built.  
I remember every fall helping to chink between the logs. 
I love how the colours change 
in the weathering process. 


The river was fast running, but the boys worked together to fix up a little 
"bathtub" space that someone else had made. 
They didn't last in the water long as it 
was oh so cold! 


We also went for a walk along the road and the kids did 
some rock hunting. 
They had to be very selective with 
what they brought home. 


I know that the Lord has created beauty 
everywhere on the earth....but
this is my favourite kind of
place that I've ever been to. 

Most of all the best place to find rest is 
in the Lord Jesus Christ himself.
As we have been studying the Bible 
it helps bring all things into the right perspective. 
An eternal one.  


The gardening that we've been doing 
has also been so nice. 
Things are starting to grow nicely 
inside and out. 

Outside the carrots, peas, beans, beets, greens, and potatoes 
are all coming up nicely. 
Inside the tomatoes, squash and some flowers and herbs are 
doing well to.  
I ate the very first tomato this week and oh it was so delicious! 

We've been also taking plants in and out to the deck 
to harden them off. 
It's so windy most of the time that they get a bit bedraggled, 
then seem to recuperate over night in the house. 


There are now boxes all over the house either full or waiting to be filled. 
I know we're a bit early...but before we know it 
it will be time to move them. 
I am trying to pace myself so that it doesn't become overwhelming
physically or emotionally.  
Everything will happen...all in good time. 

I pray that you are doing well and that
if things get to feeling overwhelming....
perhaps some time with the Lord in nature will 
help bring things back to a place
of peace. 

Love and Prayers,
Jennifer



Monday, 18 May 2020

Homemaking Mondays: Mist and Musings


Hello! 
This morning I woke a bit earlier then the rest of my family. 
There was a heavy mist settled down in our little lake. 
It seemed to add to the sweet quiet of the morning. 

A good time to talk to the Lord about things that
were on my heart. 


This week I pulled out another of my sweet teapots that I don't use 
as often as my others.  
I save this one for special moments.
This one was from my mom and I just love the floral pattern on it. 
It sure is special to enjoy a cup of tea like this...
kind of like a moment with the one you love.


As you can see above...I've watered my mint plant a bit too much.
I found these interesting mushrooms growing.  
I didn't keep them, too bad we couldn't eat them.


I have a variety of flowers blooming in my house at the moment. 
The lovely sunflowers, geraniums, marigolds, and below
a little viola that is just starting to open. 
Really cheers me as I wait to be able to put some plants outside. 
Still super chilly out at night.  
New snow on the mountains from the last couple days of rain. 


There was a bedding plant market at our local 
community centre this past weekend.
I was able to sell and re-home my extra plants.  
Then I had some space to up pot my squash and then pot up 
some of the extra flowers I had. 
I still need to plant up one big planter...
but there is no room for that inside. :) 

The Lord has provided us a place to move to...
and I'm happy to say there is room for gardening there. 
It won't be for a few more weeks.
We've begun the process of packing.  
It's not too far away and we're delighted 
to be able to stay within the community we enjoy.

I pray you have been having a lovely Monday! 

Love and Prayers,
Jennifer

Monday, 11 May 2020

Homemaking Mondays: Pretty Sheets and a Picnic


Hello! 
I hope you are having a lovely day!  

I have some pretty new sheets in the wash that my children blessed me with. 
I love the delicate flowers and muted tones. 
I'm wearing the new shirt that is pictured above the sheets. 
My card my daughter made me is sitting on my desk. 
My children are wonderful and are always so sweet to me. 

Sometimes as a mother you can get discouraged or bogged down in 
caring for your family and home. 
Just remember that there are seasons and that each time has it's place.
The struggles and the joy! 


This past week we made some yummy moose jerky in our oven.
It was much faster then in the dehydrator. 
It is all gone...but we shall do this again.
This is one part of homemaking that I really enjoy.
Making special treats on occasion just because.


This week I was home with just a couple of my children. 
We decided to go for our first picnic of the season. 
My son bbq'd up some hot dogs and we wrapped them up to take with us. 
We had found this picnic spot last year and it was very nice. 

We really enjoy being out in the bush and enjoying nature. 
We saw some bear diggings (not too recent, but from this spring). 
As we were walking we saw a hawk fly off 
and then spotted a grouse in the underbrush
frozen, hiding from the hawk.  
We got a quick picture and then went off so that we didn't scare him out of hiding. 
We also found some cranberries that were so very juicy! 
Soon they'll fall off the plants and grow new flowers. 

There are lots of lovely trails to meander on and 
as the season warms there will be coming a lot more new growth.
We are just starting to see the sweet crocus's sprouting.

The birds are coming back.
It's delightful to watch all the different kinds of ducks and shorebirds
that are occupying the water and shore by the house.  
The wood frogs have started to croak out their songs
and it's quite the orchestra with all the bird sounds mixed in.


Our landlady is selling our home and she came with a photographer this week 
to take the necessary pictures for the ad.  
We did some more cleaning then the regular weekly ones we usually do. 
We hid away some things so that it looked better. 
Sometimes there are just things that need to sit out but aren't as "picture perfect". 
It encouraged me to wash some of the light fixtures that often get forgotten. 
I'm a bit shorter and I don't notice some things...like the top of the fridge. 
Do you have that issue?
Those details needed attending to, and take some consideration. 

All the plants that I've been starting in my window are getting so big. 
Yesterday we started the process of hardening off the smaller plants. 
Most are destined for the community market, but we are keeping a few.  
Today more seeds are going into pots for our moveable garden. 
No matter where you live it's good to grow just a few things...even if it's just herbs.
I have been told herbs are a waste of time...but really I have found that 
no matter how "plain" the food is you're making, herbs really make it more palatable. 
If only I could grow a cinnamon tree...I love that spice! 

Praying you have a wonderful day! 
And I also wanted to make a note about comments....I really do appreciate 
all the effort you make to say hello!
It really cheers me to hear from you! 

Love and Prayers,
Jennifer


Monday, 4 May 2020

Homemaking Mondays: Pasta and Pretties


Hello! 

How has your week been?  
Mine has been quite varied. 
Some sun and some rain.

We've been enjoying getting out and helping others with yardwork. 
Today we worked at the community garden helping to get it ready to plant. 

This week I tried something new.  
Creamy butternut squash pasta sauce. 
I was inspired by Jill's cookbook The Prairie Homestead Cookbook.
Like most recipes I just look at the ingredients and go from there. 
My version is: 
I fried up the bacon on my dutch oven and then removed the bacon 
and left the grease. 
Then I sautéed up some leek as I had that fresh with some garlic.
I added in fresh sage, and then a package of 
butternut squash that I had thawed out from the freezer.  
I cooked this together for a bit...adding in some water instead of bone broth.
Then I added some milk at the very end. 
Oh, and some salt and pepper to taste. 
Then at the end I used the bacon to top the sauce.
I must say I really enjoyed it...but no so for the family 
so I wont' be making it again. 

I served it with some sautéed swiss chard and beet greens,
with bacon and leeks.
This is a family favourite.  


It has been warming up during the day, but at night its so cold that 
the water freezes back over.  
It's so fun to skip rocks on it and hear the special sound it makes.

I absolutely love the pretty patterns in the ice. 
The sun glances off of the different angles in such a 
wonderful way!


More and more birds are coming in. 
We have some shore birds and 
different varieties of ducks. 
Then some songbirds and 
our beloved robins! 
Below I caught a glimpse of him outside one of our windows.  
Sorry my zoom isn't so great. 
I love to hear their cheerful songs in the morning and then before 
I fall asleep at night.  
There have been owls calling a lot at night as well. 
I think they are the great horned owls.


This past week my oldest son turned 12, 
and my oldest daughter turned 21.
With that comes mixed feelings....
but mostly blessed! 
Truth is I am getting older...and nothing but death will change that.
I thank the Lord Jesus for each and every day he gives me. 

Praying you have a beautiful day! 
Love and Prayers,
Jennifer


Thursday, 30 April 2020

Do You Have a Green Thumb?


HI!  
I get asked this from time to time and really
I don't think it's the right question.  
I don't believe in having a green thumb although some people 
are more adept with plants then others.  

I think it has to do with learning. 
Have you had a chance to learn about plants? 
Do you have an interest in them? 
It's about taking time for them... and learning what they need. 
They are living things.

I strongly believe anyone can grow plants and do well.
Like all skills it takes learning and practice. 
I had a lot of practice growing up as my Mom loved plants and 
from a young age had me helping with them. 

I have lived most of my life in northern Canada...and our growing season
 is very short compared to many other places. 
You just start when there is a bit more sun shining in planting seeds....
plus starting them as early as you can for the time to grow is shorter. 
Then you do have to fuss over them for a short time so they don't dry out or get too cold. 
You have to set time out of your day each day to make sure they get watered 
(but not too much)
and as they grow out of their pots you put them in bigger ones. 
Plants need soil, sunlight, and water to grow. 
As long as you can give them that...then things usually go quite smoothly. 
Talking to your plants some say helps to. :) 

I have learned from many experienced gardeners over the years. 
One thing I find fascinating is how certain plants like each other. 
Some plants help each other grow, and others ward off pests. 
Like in the picture below I have tomatoes.  
The ones in the back I'm going to grow all summer...and the ones
in the front are going to go to other homes. 
The ones I'm keeping I put in a pot that they'll stay in all summer.  
I added some basil and a marigold to each of the pots. 
These three different plants grow well together and share the space well. 
Their roots all grow at different depths so they don't fight for soil space. 
That is a wonderful way to combine plants to utilize small growing spaces. 
Often called companion planting...there is a lot of wisdom in it.  
Yet again...it's just a learning process and seeing how it can work in your garden. 

With moving I like to grow things in pots to be able to take them with me.  
I don't have a big garden plot...although would love one. 
SO....finding ways to grow more in smaller spaces is just necessary. 
This past winter/ spring my kids and I grew radishes in a tray.  
They have very shallow roots and so the tray was perfect for them. 
We grew some lettuce and spinach...which we are still enjoying and we put those 
in three inch pots and their roots are just fine.  


An important aspect of gardening...is soil. 
It is often overlooked, but is the key to growing healthy plants.  
I've used tons of different kinds of soil as well as amended garden plot 
soils to be more productive. 
I personally am using Pro-Mix soil at the moment and it seems to work well. 
You don't want a heavy soil for pots as it needs to be able to let the plants breathe 
and not become waterlogged, or dry out completely. 
One day I'd love to be able to make my own soil mix...but it's just not happened yet. 

Another important aspect if you are able is good water. 
(without chemicals/ water softener salt) 
Rain water when possible is a great option. 
Also as the plants mature they need more nutrients.  
Compost teas (where you soak compost in water) will give your plants 
some needed nutrition.  
There are lots of fertilizers out there...but I love to use those that are natural. 

So in all...plants need soil, water and sunshine. 
A little time out of your day to pay attention to them is always beneficial. 
Just like any living thing...it takes a bit of time. 
Time that I feel is always worth it! 
Just to see the beauty of growing things with colourful flowers, 
and the oxygen they produce is a real benefit to you and your family. 

Below I planted a sunflower along with marigolds and some chamomile. 
All with different root depth needs.  
The flowers are for just being pretty...although the chamomile flowers 
will be dried for tea this coming winter. 


For indoor plants...I love those to.  
To have them year round to enjoy and knowing that they are working 
to help clean our air and to give us oxygen is worth the time 
spent caring for them. 
Make sure they have some light, some water at least once a week, 
and some fresh soil from time to time.  
Also if you have a bunch of plants together consider what "friends" they may have.
I like to put plants that are of different shapes and sizes together. 
They use the light differently.  
Such as mint...like it a bit shadier...so I have them behind 
my geraniums that love full sun.

A note about herbs though: they do take a lot more water 
then other house plants 
so they need to be watered more often.

You may be surprised how much you can grow 
if you are not used to it.  
No one has a black thumb.  
Just take a bit of time out of your days to practice and try new things. 

I hope you have a beautiful day!  
Perhaps you'll jump into growing some things...if you don't already. 

Love and Prayers,
Jennifer


Monday, 27 April 2020

Homemaking Mondays: Peaceful at Home


Hello! 
How are you today? 
I am enjoying these peaceful days at home. 
In truth...I'm always home as this is where I always spend my days.
Being a homemaker is a blessing, even during this time.

The starter plants are growing nicely.  
The tomatoes are flowering and there will soon be little tomatoes growing.
The sunflowers, marigolds and geraniums are blooming
so much and they cheer me as it's still a bit dreary outdoors. 
We had a big hailstorm today.  
There are some ducks that are coming back. 
Then there are now robins and swans as well.
Oh, and my daughter identified this sweet little song bird we've been hearing. 
It's a Ruby Crowned Kinglet. 
Such a beautiful song!


Spring Cleaning is beginning. 
Time to get into those corners. 
I like to have these homemade wipes available most of the time.
It helps to get those icky jobs done faster.  
One day I hope to go paperless...but for now I use the Bounty paper towels.
I add 1/4 cup of rubbing alcohol and a couple squirts of dish soap
then fill up the one container with water. 
I make two containers at a time usually.
Then I just take the paper towels (the small strip ones). 
Fold the strips and stick them in the buckets.  
I bought this yogurt specifically to use the buckets. :)  
They work perfectly...and the yogurt was good to. 


It's my older son's birthday today.  
My younger daughter set out this indoor puzzle hunt for the boys.
It was just something I came across on Pinterest.
They went searching all through the house, 
and at the end they got a "prize" that my daughter made for them. 


How are your days going? 

Love and Prayers,
Jennifer