Thursday, September 30, 2010

Project Genesis

This month's Project Genesis was an easy one for me. 
After a ton of research and careful thought,
 we bought a Prius,
 theToyota Hydrid Gas/Electric vehicle.
Previously I drove a highlander.  I could go about 420 km to a tank of gas which was about $72-$75.00.  I filled up roughly twice a month. $150.00 or 150 liters of fuel.
The Prius went 740km on a tank.  It took 35 liters and cost me around $35.00 I do about 850 km per month.  So I have saved over one month. $108.00 in fuel and 108 liters of gasoline.

Over 5 years that equals $6480.00 depending on gas prices
6480 lites of fuel.  

Some people have argued that you pay more for a hybrid.  And you do.  But I think you get that back in 5 years.  But it's not about the money.  Like eating organic, it is the Environmental Price that has to be considered too.

For more ways to be considerate of the environment head over The Old Grey Mare blog for inspiration.

Monday, September 27, 2010


My Girl- digitally enhanced

Weekend shots.

Having returned from a girls weekend away, I could show you the copious amount of food and drink we went through, but thought instead to show you a snippet of the beauty of a Fall weekend up North.
A Muskoka chair on a farmhouse cottage porch makes a perfect spot to ponder the big water.
The colors change in the Fall.  The water becomes bluer, less green....a gorgeous palette with the deep grey of the rocks.
These large rocks remind me of whales....
Love the turquoise Muskoka chairs.
I would love to have had a look inside this house.

This is how the ice age layered the rocks on the shores of Georgian Bay.
Some chick doing Pilate's on the rocks???!!

Saturday, September 25, 2010

We're still alive.....No Foolish Mushroom Feasting

Just so all of you know, I would never, ever eat a mushroom that I picked in the wild.  Having read Tom's blog this past week, I have become fascinated with mushrooms and had no idea how deadly they could be.  I have had fun this weekend finding new varieties to photograph...not to eat.
I will not touch the fungi.

For Tom...Should we or shouldn't we......

Away with the girls for a cottage weekend.
Inspired by Tom over HERE we've been foraging for mushrooms.
Deep in the woods there were three kinds. All pictured above.
The problem with mushrooms is if you make a mistake it's game over.
Are any of these edible????

Friday, September 24, 2010

Photo Challenge and Next Week's Challenge (you're going to hate it)

This week the Photo Challenge was AGE.  Your interpretation. 
I love old things, always gravitating to vintage or antique or used over new.
The picture above shows the door of an old cupboard at the cottage.  I like the grubbiness of this cabinet, and the way the paint has crackled to an aligator skin finish, revealing the peek of green paint below.
I like to imagine where this little cupboard has been. 
Whose kitchen......what did it hold....
The changing decor it has been part of over the past 100 years or so.
Each layer of paint with it's own story...rather like people, with all of our layers that form over the years.......protective layers,  joyful and sad times....

Which brings me to next weeks challenge.

Next weeks challenge is

Yes, I can see you squirming.  Blogging is a somewhat secretive endeavor. Only revealing what you want, small parts, the better parts for the most part. Hiding, standing back, creating an online image... our blog readers see only what we want them to see, unlike the real world where people interpret us through their visual and physical interactions with us.  Getting to know our blogging buddies, seldom leads to sending a photo as you might have done years ago with a pen pal. 
It's a bit like online dating....a creative and catchy attractive, maybe even outdated or glamour shot that the real person there, and what more is there to see.

The good part is, this is an artistic endeavor.....self portrait can be taken literally or figuratively.  It doesn't necessarily mean your FACE.
Interpret as you wish.

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Phone Pics

What I love about Phone Pics, is they tend to be more random.  Less staged. They have a different feel.
I seldon download my I Phone pictures, often forgetting what I took pictures of.
This top one is one of my all time favourites.  It  is a picture of my Mooch in his last summer.  As we near the cottage, we always opened the windows.  The minute he smelled the lake, he would hang his head from the window, jowels flapping and feel the breeze.
The grainy quaity of the photo makes them look like old vintage photos.
Here's my future DIL on her birthday taken last year in Montreal.
The Hannah one of her elegant poses.
The Mooch again......this dog was just so photogenic
Le Cartet Montreal....home of the best Almond Croissant ever.
My home last Christmas just prior to my 25 person sit down dinner.
And again....only at Chinese New Year
My boy on his 25 th.
My friends at last years Halloween Party.
And a capture to email my daughter of a great purse I found at a vintage shop.

Monday, September 20, 2010

Driftwood Cottage

 I came across a beach today that was laden with driftwood.  The colors wre so gorgeous.  Silver, bronze, white.....all mixed together.

They reminded me of old bones.

Sea creatures


All this in the suburbs.  And then this cottage overlooking the Driftwood Beach.
With a driftwood inspired railing.

Overlooking the harbour and Toronto in the distance. 
Clear enough to see the CN Tower on the skyline.

Saturday, September 18, 2010

Best Carrot Cake Recipe.

"The Barefoot Chania" Carrot Cake.

I always volunteer to bake a cake when I am invited to dinner somewhere.  I love to bake.  I could bake all day.  Usually the host requests my Vanilla Cake or Chocolate Buttercream, but this time I didn't give them a choice.  I was craving a Fall cake.  Something heavy and spicy. 
This is the Barefoot Contessa's Carrot Cake recipe, and it is easy to make and fabulous.  It is honestly the best carrot cake I have ever made.  Chock full of pineapple bits, raisins and loads of walnuts, it's dense and delicious.  I added a pinch of freshly grated nutmeg which gave it a little Zing.  There's nothing like fresh nutmeg.  If you want to buy a gtreat gift for a cook, buy them a nutmeg grater and a few fresh nutmeg nuts. (is that what they are called....Nuts?)

I finished it off with a sprinkle of chopped walnuts and a simple line of piped rosettes.
I love all of Ina Garten's recipes (Barefoot Contessa)  She's been trying to kill her Geoffrey for years with butter.  He's one lucky dude.  He works in the city and returns to the Hamptons eeach weekend, where she light him a fire, gets his slippers and cook him up a feast (rather like Mr Raz).  After a weekend of plumping him up, she send him back to the city laden with home made goodies. 
On one show she actually said
"Geoffrey's going back to the city today, and I want to make sure no one else is feeding him, so I send back my..homemade whatever......"
I laughed so hard over that one.  I love her.  I think I am a bit like her actually.  Except I cuss in the kitchen.  Swear like a Trooper.  Shockingly foul mouthed.
This cake is huge.  You could feed 12-14 at least.
You can find the recipe HERE

Friday, September 17, 2010

Friday Photo Challenge

This week, I challenged everyone to get Closer to their subject.  Close pictures aren't easy.  You lose the background and sometimes the clarity.  But you get these gorgeous blurred edges and out of context images.  The above photos is of a dried gourd of some sort.  I was on one of my last walks with my belovedly slow moving Mooch, when he stopped for a pee right near this beautiful pod.  I picked it up and hung it with fishing line from the chandelier at the cottage.
This chandelier came from West Elm.  It is a simple Capiz shell shade, made from rings of steel with shells hung all over it.  I embellished it further with my Bits.
This one is so close you can see the cobwebs on the star.
My sister in law has a friend in Africa who make these beach glass mobiles.
I hung it from the chandelier.

I bought this glass star from a glass artist.

I was part of a Fiber Art bead trade.  This is one that I received.

This is the long shot of it.

Next week, the Challenge is to shoot something to show it's
Something old, perhaps rusty, peeling, scrubby.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Finding You a Ride to Nova Scotia

Faffing Around with my camera, I captured these images in the harbor.
As always, I ignored the yachts and power boats,
preferring what they tow behind them.
These lovely kayaks with their orange paddles make lovely color.
The reflection is just as important to the picture as the boat.
   The red on this tube has faded to pink in the sunshine.
My all time favorite tender.  I have never seen this boat go out. 
 I think they leave it there for me to photograph.
  I love this little red boat.  It looks like it has had 100 coats of paint.
And then, there's the practical "faux" wooden boat.
Probably made from recycled juice boxes.
And then there was this guy.  This sailboat was packed full of stuff and in not too "Ship Shape" Shape.
At first I think he thought I was from a newspaper.  He was looking for someone to join him on a sail through the Great Lakes right through the Saint Lawrence Seaway to Nova Scotia on the Atlantic.
Sadly, I couldn't join him.......other commitments and all....
I wonder if he's a tidy sailor?
Love how his paint dripped.
Angel Feathers
(for you Bettina)