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Saturday, 9 September 2017

As of Lately,

I have been fairly absent from blogging lately due to many busy times. My husband's mother finally got moved to a much nicer retirement home after a year's wait, which meant us packing up her belongings, ahead of time, storing them at our house (or in my case, driving around with my vehicle packed to the hilts until the precise time came when she was to move in), and then moving everything into her new room. Precise is really the word, as we were told she had to come between 4:00 and 4:30 in the afternoon (on a work day!). She is now moved in and much happier, although not really unpacked and I suspect I will be taking some time this week to get her more unpacked (dementia - organization is not really her forte anymore).

As well, our son started at a new highschool this past week due to his previous one closing (thank you Ontario government) and the changes and adjustments that came with that are being dealt with. Daughter went back to her fourth year at university, taking on the roll of Don again in a residence. She has Don duty from 8:00 p.m. until 8:00 a.m. for a few nights. I asked her when she sleeps!! Hopefully not at class time.

We feel like we went from summer ( a very wet summer) directly into late fall. It went down to 6 degrees Celsius! (That is six degrees above freezing). I feel like I might as well just rip out my vegetable garden now.

Here are some pictures I took in the past couple of weeks of what is blooming right now. There is still lots of beautiful colour in the yard.

This is a flower that was gifted to me by a work colleague. This was its best year (all that rain!) It is informally known as turtle head, but I am not sure of the specific name.

Here are the blooms up close. It is a really lovely plant for this time of year.

Of course, Rudbekia (Black Eyed Susan) is in its glory.

I believe this is called Pink Diamond hydrangea. It has turned an even darker pink since I took this picture.

I don't know what this little guy will turn into.

Last weekend, husband and I went out for brunch and then drove around the general area, about an hour and a half away from our home. It was a pretty nice day (i.e. it wasn't pouring rain) and we drove quite a bit along a lake and marvelled at the beautiful homes, imagining what these people must do for a living in order to be able to afford them! At one point during our drive, we saw this.

What is going on with that dead tree?

Oh look! A face!

And another face!


In this portion of our province, you can see many rock faces which are part of the escarpment. Many moons ago, my husband did quite a bit of rock climbing. He looks at these rock faces and imagines how he would tackle them.

This is also the time of year for flocking. A couple of days ago, I walked out into the kitchen and it was a scene from "The Birds". The pictures don't really capture how MANY birds there were. I think they are starlings.


We are currently watching news and weather reports regarding Hurricane Irma. A friend of ours is waiting to see what happens for her mother who lives in Florida and will be going to a shelter today. I'm hoping that with all the pre-warning, as many people as possible have been able to be prepared and get some place safe. But it's not just the actual hurricane, it's the aftermath and how long it will take to clean up, wait for the water to recede, and rebuild if necessary. I can't imagine. We've been to Cuba a couple of times and know what type of housing the average person lives in. I also can't imagine what a category 5 hurricane will do to those! Take care, everyone!

36 comments:

  1. I remember a few kids in HS sleeping at their desks. Some teachers would let them do it and fail. Such a shame

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    1. Hopefully she can nap at some point during the day, after being up all night. They ask a lot of these Dons.

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  2. Love the artwork in the tree. Someone has talent and imagination. Those birds would make me nervous. They are obviously part of your yearly calendar. Is flocking part of their migration, or mating or....?

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    1. Migration. There are birds which stay throughout the winter (chickadees, cardinals, woodpeckers...) but many fly south. Flocking is part of the preparations, I guess.

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  3. Jenn, Gaaa...I hate those darn starlings...they are nasty and noisy. I loved your flowers .:):) I laughed about your daughter not sleeping in class..oh my I know what you are saying. I hate that about your son's school. Indy is going thru the exact same thing...saying enroll is down and they must close certain schools....next five years they will be building schools...that's how that stuff works.It's a big pain in the butt. We use to have kids go to the school in their neighborhoods. Now they want to consolidate everything. Bigger isn't necessarily better. I sure hope your MIL likes her new place. Dementia is a thief of a good life .So sorry this is happening. Be brave sweet girl. Blessings to all, xoxo, Susie

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    1. I've had tons of experience watching my own mother progress through dementia until her death a few years ago. She was also physically unwell. My mother-in-law is as fit as a fiddle and requires almost no physical care, but she has no short term memory and basically stopped doing any of her normal day to day activities (cooking, cleaning, getting out and about) for a few years now. We tried having her live with us here and there over the last few years, but she has progressed fairly quickly. As well, we both work full time and it was just too much.

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  4. It is the most beautiful day here - sunny and just the right temps. My garden still looks beautiful, but is definitely on the wane. I have to comment on your MIL. I have thought of it lately as I am 65 1/2, and have decided that a nursing home for me would be living in hell. I know many would love it, but as an introvert who would rather be around animals than people, it would be the last place I'd want to go. What happens to those like me?

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    1. This comment has been removed by the author.

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    2. Woops, excuse the deleted comment. The whole topic of elder care is filled with mixed emotions, opinions, and experiences. There are no easy solutions.

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  5. I like your photographs.
    Hope your mother-in+law will be happy in her new home.

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    1. She already is because she no longer has to share a space with anyone. As well, it is just a much nicer place in every sense.

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  6. We have robins and flickers flocking up in our front field. Well I call it a field, but we have been mowing it for years.
    I have a very elderly uncle and aunt in Florida. I have no idea what is going to happen in their case. Uncle lives in a very chi chi condo that he rarely leaves at the best of times. My aunt is recently widowed. Neither of them have children down south.

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    1. I get excited when I see one flicker, I 'd be thrilled with a flock of them!

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    1. Thanks, I try to have something blooming at different times.

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  8. The tree is amazing! Is that a wooly caterpillar? Here's some folklore from the Almanac: Folklore says that if the rusty brown band is wide, then it will be a mild winter. The more black there is, the more severe the winter. From the look of your little fella, we should have a mild winter??? Fingers crossed!! :)

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    1. I knew there was something about predicted the winter by looking at the wooly caterpillar, but I didn't know exactly what it was. I don't know if this little guy is a wooly or not.

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  9. The flowers are lovely. I look at the new builds around here, and learned from a friend the most expensive are 2 million. WTH?

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    1. I've never had that kind of money, nor has my family, so it's a completely foreign concept to me having a giant Mcmansion.

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  10. I love your new header. Sounds like your mother-in-law is in a better place, I would hate sharing a room even if I had no short term memory. My mother-in-law tried to take care of her husband who had Alzheimer's and it nearly killed her.
    Hope your son like his new school, change is hard when your a teenager.

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    1. Being a caregiver is very hard. I've been hearing stories of other students from his closed highschool who had rough first days/weeks at their new schools as well (they were dispersed between about four different schools).

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  11. My job requires that I go into a lot of homes. I remember one that was incredibly massive and opulent. I am talking 10, 000 sq. feet if not more. The front double doors were solid wood about 15 feet high and 6 feet across. They probably cost more than my car. Which isn't a stretch because my car is so old but still, who can afford that? I never did find out what the owners did for a living. It was their mother I was caring for. Incidentally, she lived in a different part of the house that was a whole other house altogether, about 2000 sq feet on its own. It was joined to the main house by a corridor.
    I feel bad that you all have had such a miserable summer. We are the ones that usually get the rainy summer so I know how disheartening it is. We just had rain today for the first time is weeks.
    That stump/tree needs to be protected so it never gets chopped down. I love it!

    I work with people who have dementia. It is always a difficult time, no matter what decisions are made. I do hope this transition makes her life easier and not more difficult.

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    1. Wow, that would have been some house! The tree is alongside a groomed walking trail. I think a lot of people get to enjoy it.

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  12. Those faces in the tree are pretty cool. What a great find. I like your pink Turtle Head flowers. It certainly has been frosty cool at night, I worry that I won't get a full harvest from my cherry tomatoes. Being in the sandwich generation, it's hard to balance parent care with child care. You're right, no easy answers. Happy week ahead.

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    1. Yes, sandwich generation for sure. I've covered my tomatoes lots of times with old bed sheets in case of frost.

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  13. That tree face. That is very cool! And your garden is gorgeous. Such pretty flowers. We have weeds. LOL Too busy with the house this year. Next spring we're going to tackle the outside.

    This weather is crazy. It got really cold last night and this afternoon it was very hot. And tonight it's back to really cold. Yo-yo temperatures.

    We were in Cuba a couple of years ago and I know what you mean about the housing. And the historical buildings and hotels, too! I can't imagine what it'll do to the residences and how destruction to hotels will affect the tourism, which is something the Cuban people rely on.

    I'm glad to hear your mother-in-law is in a much better place. It's hard to watch our parents get old and frail. The best we can do is make them as comfortable as possible.

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    1. If you lived closer to me, I'd share perennials with you for your garden next year. :)

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  14. I have that pink diamond (?) hydrangea in my yard too, it's just gorgeous right now. And never saw "turtle head" before, love it! Might try to find some around here.

    It seems like summer barely made it's presence known around here and we have the cooler temps already too - the summer that really wasn't.

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    1. Chelone obliqua - that is the actual name for turtlehead flower (I looked it up). They obviously like a moist soil. We actually have the furnace on in the morning here, but this week (if you can believe a 5 day forcast) is supposed to be warm again, thank goodness.

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  15. That is so good, that your MIL is in a place that she likes. It relieves a lot of stress for everyone. We are lucky in that our father - who has dementia - is able to still live at home. My sister lives two doors down and is there almost constantly. She is an angel. I have to admit that, after seeing The Birds, I am pretty nervous when in the proximity of large flocks of birds of any type!

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  16. It can be a very difficult decision to place a loved one in a care situation, but quite often it is best for all concerned. Your MIL seems to be happier from the information you have shared here. Your fall colors are lovely and we too are getting ready for lots of changes here in New England with fall foliage. When we lived in VA we often saw large groups of starlings in the back yard and admittedly they are not my favorite bird.

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  17. Love that fabulous tree! I'm glad you were able to get a good day out -- sounds like you've been busy and while necessary, not all of it fun. Your garden was lovely. Most of mine is wilted down now. I'll hate to see it go.

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  18. I love that tree with the carved face! It certainly sounds like you and your family are very busy! I hope your mother in law does well in her new living space. Love the flock of birds!

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  19. Sounds like your plate has been full. I can't get over that face in the tree. It must have taken days to do that. Love all the birds. We saw a flock chasing a tug boat the other day. It was so pretty. Hope things slow down for you, Jenn.

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  20. I love your tour! Good eye, spotting the faces.
    The hurricanes were so powerful. Good luck with your MIL.
    Sadly, they do have to close schools. It costs too much to keep half-empty ones open. So many uses for our tax dollars.

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  21. Wow what beautiful flowers. That dead tree is kinda cool actually. Hope everything goes well with your mother in law.
    XO Ellen from Ask Away
    www.askawayblog.com

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