Wednesday, June 21, 2006

And I even got to cut the cake!

Dena Kubota, our Eastshore Representative for ArtWalk, sent me this picture of me cutting the cake at the Creston opening last Friday night. Actually, Mayor Snopek did the honors, but I got to do the more "domestic" cutting and serving after.
James and I finished delivering the last of the venue posters and brochures this afternoon. Now we need to whipper snip the grass at our own gate and put up our own venue posters.
This afternoon as I walked down to my mom's there was a bald eagle circling just back of her home.
We had such a great time this evening. There are a group of people working in clay every Wed at the Wynndel Hall and right now they are making bugs for a "Go Buggy in the Garden" installation for the Creston Valley Garden Festival this July21 - 23. James and I went and had a really fun evening and toasted summer with a lovely sweet white wine to top it all off. And there were stars! We've seen so few lately with all the rain.

Monday, June 19, 2006

Proof the bird boxes really "work"!!!!

Here's proof the birdhouses "work." Our friend Taryn emailed this picture of a swallow peeking out of one of my houses. Jim and Taryn bought a house for smaller birds and the swallows were so insistent they needed a home they bought another house the right size for them.
We are still having really changeable weather. This morning was lovely and I took my mother for lunch at the Blueberry Patch Country Market - a farm that grows blueberries and hydroponic strawberries, and has a lovely little gift shop and restaurant. On our way home we stopped and watched a whitetailed deer doe and fawn cross a field. Because my mom is 85 she doesn't spot things as fast as earlier in her life, but these two weren't too far away and weren't moving particularly fast so we had a good view.
I had to run back into town for errands but didn't get much done as the skies opened and it just poured rain. It dumped again this evening but now, at 9:15 it isn't bad. This has been a very wet spring!

Saturday, June 17, 2006

As spring turns to summer...

What James has been doing

James has been in the studio. He's done some lovely paintings lately , starting early in the morning in that "misty", almost romantic light, and with our very wet spring there has been plenty of mist to paint in!

ArtWalk Opening and Saturday Market

First day of the Saturday Market for the season!!!!
It wasn't pretty, in fact as we left the house about 7:15 it was pouring and having put our tent up in rain before we know it does not deflect water - it leaks!!! so we didn't put the tent up. We backed both vehicles in and opened the backs (Jeep Cherokee with the door forming a roof too low for Danny to stand under, and Ford pickup with a canopy that the door sticks out but not beyond the tail gate.)
Lois and girls were there too but their tent is water proof and she has shower curtains attached around the sides with their curtain rings, so their world didn't disolve into soap bubbles, and I got my feta fix!
I have a squall jacket that knocks about in the back of the car and gets in the way, but it is there "in case." Today it was "in case Lois forgets a jacket" and it looked very nice and tidy on her. Eileen had brought it one time and the back of the car seemed like the appropriate place for such a garment.
The rains would come, and then the sun would shine weakly through the clouds, and then it would be raining again, but we had a steady stream of customers - not a lot, but quite steady - and I pretty much sold out except for a few cookies. I had 2 loaves left which is not a problem and the rhubarb crisp muffins vanished early on. We decided people are just fed up with waiting for good weather and decided to come out anyway.
Last night was the ArtWalk opening for Creston and it was just great! We had a local, and very good jazz band, After Hours, play and they did just play and play without even a break for 3 hours. Their music is danceable for those who do, and really nice to listen to as we all visited and ate Annette's great goodies. (Annette of Annette's Bistro and Coffee House.)
James has a large showing of his work at Annette's.

Saturday, June 10, 2006

Nest boxes and wildlife

Here are two recent nest boxes, or bird houses depending on what one wants to call them.
The house on the left is sized for a bluebird or swallow. The house on the right is for a small bird like a chickadee or wren.
We've been having quite the wildlife days. A couple nights ago we drove out to the back field and saw 4 elk in the middle field grazing like cows. We drove around the neighbourhood and as we came back in the driveway there were 3 little groupings of white tailed deer totalling 10 deer in all. No wonder gardening is a challenge!
The day before yesterday I was gazing at the neighbour's field watching a cow elk in the tall grass when she came out with a calf following her. She was none too relaxed crossing the open field with her precious baby.
Skeeter, our little abandoned kitten, is becoming more tame. If I sit in a low chair she comes to be petted, but she's not too sure about being picked up and if you approach her face to pet her from the front she flinches. Someone was not kind to her! But she is putting on a little weight and her coat is improving.
The other night we were sitting in the yard having an outside dinner when she caught a really big vole (field mouse) and she was some proud of herself! She kept running from one side of the yard to the other carrying her prize. She would have to put on a nervous little spurt of speed as she passed us, but she did want us to see what a good cat she is.

Monday, June 05, 2006


This is Skeeter. We are having some success in taming her. She is still a poor nervous little creature but we found that if we set my little kids school chair on the deck and sat down low in it she was not so intimidated by the huge humans and she does want to be petted even though she is scared of sudden moves and not quite sure she won't get hit. Poor little thing. Someone wasn't kind to her.
I have managed to pick her up a couple times ever so briefly. My friend Betty brought over some kitten weaning food that looks for all the world like someone took cat food and pulverized it in the food processor and put a big price on it. You're supposed to mix it half and half with water and she does eat it. She is starting to eat the regular cat food too but I think she may need a little special care. She's rather thin and her hair shows the lack of good eating. When she first came she wouldn't eat and I have found this behavior in stressed kittens before.
One little kitten was depressed and suffering separation anxiety I'm sure. She had decided to never eat again and I coaxed her back to eating by biting vitamin E capsules and putting the oil on her lips.
Look at the size of those feet! She has one orange foot, one black, and two tortoise shell, which I believe is what best describes her colouring.
James is painting wonderful moody garden paintings these days, that and actually gardening when the weather permits.
ArtWalk is nearly up and running. Tomorrow I've an early morning meeting and then the brochure will go to the printer. I have another meeting with KC from Kootenay Employment Services who is helping us (James and I) set up our web page.
Sunday is the ArtWalk opening in Crawford Bay and Friday the 16th is the opening here in Creston.
Sat the 17th the Farmers' Market opens for the season. Busy, busy, busy........

Saturday, June 03, 2006

Skeeter, or "the things we do for love...."

I fear we may have another cat.

For a few weeks my husband would see a dark flash down by the chicken house as he came out of our house. We knew there was a little stray about but hoped she’d wander on.

It sounds harsh, but harsh are the people who drop their animals off “in the country” for the coyotes and hawks to kill, and for them to be totally unprepared for life in the wild.

They drop them off in winter when everything is frozen and there isn’t even water!!! Never mind food. They drop them off in the heat of summer too.

We see them in the ditches sometimes and it is no life for a domestic animal, and yet we can’t take in every stray. We have our own animals that we are responsible for. We see them where they’ve been hit by cars too.

Well, a couple days back she moved up to the house and is yeowling. She is pathetic. She is horribly thin, and has a tiny, warped, malnourished little body. She is that very dark brown and orange brindley colour, which is why I think she is “she.” There is no size to her at all. I wonder how young she was when someone discarded her. She has a sad little bent tail that probably was broken in another life not too long ago as I believe she’s still a kitten. She may be in heat, oh joy! We always have our own animals neutered and chose not to acquire more than we can care for. We did not choose her.

But we have put out food and water. We can’t just let her starve.

I wonder if she was someone’s pet. Would a cat that was completely feral crave human companionship? That is what she wants. She won’t let me touch her but she is managing to get closer, and I can tell she wants to be near.

I spent more than an hour today sitting out in the lawn chairs sweet talking her and dangling my fingers down near the ground and she even managed to jump up in the chair by me ever so briefly. I talked to her and talked to her and assured her I wouldn’t hurt her. I think she's been hurt before. She has probably been chased or kicked. Twice she gave my fingers a tentative tap. This is real progress, but I really don’t need, and I really don’t want another cat.