Summer 2014

The Larisa Grove back yard in full bloom

It was a very hectic spring at our home. On May 1, the Ontario government tabled its 2014-15 Budget, and on May 2, one of the opposition parties said they would not support it. The Opposition Party, the Conservatives, didn’t support any government bill, so that meant that a vote on the Budget would result in the fall of the government. This was not unexpected. On Friday May 2nd, the Premier called an election for June 12th, and we were off and running!

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Christmas 2013

Christmas holidays 2013

The 2013-14 Christmas Holiday Season is now officially in the history books. Over the January 11-12 weekend, we carefully dismantled the decorations and adornments in the house, labelled everything in its box, stored it back downstairs, and then cleaned and vacuumed. All traces of Christmas 2013 are now in storage. As always, the Christmas tree was last to go, its lights signaling the festive season until the very last minute as the Christmas music CDs get one last play while the takedown tasks are done.

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Winter 13-14

Winter of 2013-14

We were all looking forward to a relaxing Christmas this year. Bob had a very long autumn sitting at Queen’s Park, with more than the usual amount of travel and committee work. Bob’s big personal thrill of the year came when he was not only the starting goaltender in a hockey game against the Toronto Maple Leaf Old-Timers, but also delivered the Province’s greetings at the same time. Then came the big ice storm of December 2013. A major weather system carried a huge mass of wet air up from the Gulf of Mexico through the heart of North America before colliding with a mass of cold air coming down from the arctic, and Toronto was frozen solid.

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Kitchen Garden 2013

New theme and kitchen garden

This summer, as with most years in our home, our dinner guests will dine on ingredients grown steps from the dinner table, and often harvested and prepared just for that one meal. Today, I harvested my first lot of garlic, shown in the picture opposite. I will have to let them dry out a bit, and then we are ready to cook with our very own garlic. This is a species of locally-grown and harvested garlic. It will take a few weeks for the garlic to cure, however.

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Our July storm bubble

A rain storm for the ages Anyone following the news reports from the Greater Toronto Area knows about the torrential rain and flooding that happened all across southern Ontario, as slow-moving thunderstorm fronts emptied more rain in two hours on the Toronto area than normally falls in a month. However, just as nearly everyone else was getting rained on in biblical quantity, our neighbourhood seemed to be in a dry bubble. We were outside trying…

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Christmas 2012

Up go the 2012 Christmas decorations! As we begin to drag the boxes of Christmas decorations, ornaments and paraphernalia out of the basement, we remember the full-day task of getting them down way back in January. It always brings out the child in everyone to start decorating the house for Christmas time. Now that everything outside has been packed away and made ready for winter, we can turn our attention to the festive time of…

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Good things grow

Our 2012 Ontario garden

With our assiduous watering, the garden has both blossomed in flowers, and borne us a bountiful crop of veggies this summer. Aside from being part of the cucumber salad, we can incorporate and garnish dishes and drinks with fresh mint from our garden. This is mint julep time, and mojito season.  We have plenty of mint leaves. We have always grown our share of fresh herbs, including  chives for our baked potatoes and fish dishes; lots of lemon balm, which makes a nice tea when infused. The chopped leaves are good in salads too.

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