As you probably realize, I've been using my iphone for virtually all of my photos since I returned home from the hospital, over two and a half years ago. For more than half that time, my large Nikon was just too heavy to hold. But I've now been using the Nikon (having built back up the strength in my arms) for most of my bird pictures out the window, and a few flowers over the past few months. I've come to recognize two clear specific shortcomings of the iphone camera.
Friday, April 30, 2021
Thursday, April 29, 2021
Our dining room table has recently been decorated with a bright small bouquet of Daffodils and birch twigs. Mrs. F.G. was trimming the White Birch tree a little, and picked four of the Daffodils that grow below it. She tucked some birch twigs into the vase as well as the flowers, for a touch of whimsy.
Wednesday, April 28, 2021
Plants continue to grow (and some to bloom) as our garden unfolds for 2021. And Mrs. F.G. continues to prepare the garden for all the things she's going to plant over the coming weeks. If we just got some more actually warm weather I could get out and enjoy it more.
Tuesday, April 27, 2021
Maybe it was because my caregiver came early and I was up and away from breakfast sooner than normal, but there seemed to be a surprising number of birds flitting past the window today. And later on in the morning a very active small flock of Yellow-rumped Warblers, my first warblers of the year passed through.
Monday, April 26, 2021
Six years ago today I posted about a great hike a friend and I completed, crossing both Pinnacle Rock and Mill Creek. I had never hiked there before, and the geology was fascinating, so I really enjoyed it. I'd love to get out hiking this year, but I can't, so revisiting this one is the next best thing. Here are a few pictures from April of 2016.
Sunday, April 25, 2021
Yesterday our Saturday morning helper arrived, but Mrs. F.G. was out well in advance getting things ready and starting the work. This week's project is expanding the flowerbeds in three specific areas, partly to smooth out the corners and make it easier for lawn mowing. But Mrs. F.G. has more plants arriving, so she needs space for them.
Saturday, April 24, 2021
This has been National Volunteer Week and it's one of those things I try to remember each year, for our lives depend heavily of the efforts of volunteers. We have both volunteered extensively, and I hope you do too. As my dad always told me, it's important to find a way to give back to your community one way or another.
I didn't think about it much at the time, but both my mom and dad volunteered, commitments I was aware of as a child. Dad volunteered with the church, usually on financial matters, and mom helped run a thrift shop for the IODE (Imperial Order of Daughters of the Empire - how's that for colonial name!). The IODE does still exist, with more than 200 chapters across Canada.
The next time I thought much about volunteering was when our young boys got into sports. We realized immediately that here was a whole large group of parents who volunteered as coaches and organizers - for T-ball, hockey, football and baseball. And the coaches made a huge difference to our kid's enjoyment of the games.
Mrs. F.G. and I eventually chose to make our contribution by serving as leaders for cubs, scouts and brownies. Have you ever walked by a brownie group and a cub group meeting in different rooms (ours were in a church)? No-one can ever tell me that the genders at that age aren't different. But we survived and loved it, especially when it came to camps.
Later, as the kids grew up and we had a little more time, we got involved in other organizations. Mrs. F.G. took horticultural courses and led the establishment of the Guelph Master Gardeners group. Later she moved out of that intense time and into quilting, where she helped with programs for both the Guelph and the Queen's Bush quilting guilds.
For my part I got involved in helping start both the Ontario Land Trust Alliance and the Ontario Farmland Trust, both organizations still going strong today. After I've retired my life (until Feb. 2018!) was built around volunteering for the local Bruce Trail Club of the Bruce Trail Conservancy. I was in charge of overseeing all the properties they had purchased here in the Beaver Valley (some 40-50 now) and assessing each new property that was preserved.
This involved mostly field work, which was the part I enjoyed. In fact, knowing that I would be asked to volunteer after I retired, I pro-actively called up and offered to volunteer two years before retiring. I wanted to head off any requests to serve on any committees!
Today our own volunteering years seem to be over, and we're more on the receiving end. Volunteers do so much in the health care system, from raising money for hospitals to visiting shut-ins and delivering meals-on-wheels. Sometimes I think volunteers run the world, they certainly make it a much more pleasant place to live!
So I encourage you to find some way you can 'give back to your community', in any small way that you can.
Friday, April 23, 2021
big patch of wood shavings on the ground....