Saturday, June 18, 2011

Not Summer Yet

Our temperatures have been consistently about 4º to 10º below average for this time of year.  Today is a corker! We started at about +7ºC and are now standing at +6ºC (somewhere in the low forties F), combined with heavy wind and heavy rain.  I'm convinced that I see snowflakes every now and then.

Early this week Jim erected a "deer gate" at the east end of the raised beds, hoping to deter at least some of the unwelcome browsers.

On Tuesday we had our annual staff supper.  That's usually a barbecue on our large backyard deck, but this year because of wind, rain and tons of mosquitoes I decided to simply serve the meal at the dining room table.  We had a great time!  The food turned out very well: baked chicken breast in a seasoned sauce over rice, tossed salad with dressings, marinated bean salad (best recipe!) and a jello salad (recipe from Joys of Jello, a pre-wedding shower cookbook gift).  I hardly ever make a jello salad, perhaps once in 10 years, but this one was a winner: lemon jello, crushed pineapple, mandarin oranges, cottage cheese and Cool Whip.  Totally out of my usual menu, but it was creamy and delicious.  Followed up by the standard dessert: chocolate/cherry cake with vanilla ice cream.  Then we sat around the living room and had a good time of conversation--and no one went home with mosquito bites!

We've been hearing doves all season, and yesterday this dove was walking around the garden, unperturbed by my presence, unlike the blackbird pair who have young high up in a spruce close by our back door.  

Their nest escaped my earlier predations because it was too high to reach, unless I got out our tallest step ladder.  Now I'm sorry that I didn't try harder to get rid of them!  Any time we are outside they "blitz" us, squawking angrily.  Here's the female who can scold even with food in her mouth.  The females are quite a bit lighter in colour than the males.

Here's the male, glaring malevolently at me from a nearby tree.  It really kind of
spooks me when he flaps angrily around
my head.


And here's the first finished sweater for the two youngest granddaughters.  I think it's really a sharp sweater for a young girl.  The buttons are cute too.  I had bought them some years ago for another sweater, and then didn't use them.  At first I wanted each sweater to have only the yellow, orange and purple hearts.  So I looked all over for some 

more of these heart buttons, but 
couldn't find them, even at Michael's.
I finally solved the problem by using every colour except the pink hearts.  So now each of the sweaters will have purple, green, yellow, blue, orange and red buttons.

Now to finish the second sweater, which needs sleeves, plackets and neck ribbing.  

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