Monday, May 30, 2016

Well Being...

Do you ever feel frazzled?

After last week with chaos of the plumbing problems
I was edgy and feeling overwhelmed.
So I decided to take some "down time" on the weekend for my well being.

Time to slow down,
to stop multi tasking,
take a day or two and have a change of pace and a rest from the regular routine.

Instead of hopping in the shower,  getting dressed and putting on my make up first thing in the morning I sat quietly with my coffee creme
and lazed about wearing my PJ's and robe.

~ Be Well ~

Time to sleep in and indulge in a little downtime
it feels so luxurious...
Giving oneself the permission to take a day off of the domestics is so simple and restorative, yet it is not in my nature, and it could and should be!

My daily walks offer time for peace, quiet and reflection.
Fresh air and exercise are free.

I opt to walk on a scenic route that provides opportunities for me to capture beauty on my IPhone and then I share them on Instagram and here on the blog.
For that I am grateful...

Re-energizing strategies...

"Stop and smell the roses"
 pick a bouquet and arrange them in a vase and enjoy them indoors.

Mariage Freres Paris Tea, 
in a pretty china cup
is the classic elixir that soothes...

an inspiring book that fuels the desire to feather one's surroundings.
Using simple pieces, editing, rearranging collections for a fresh new look.

Finding things in Nature...
using them in the home
pure white feathers
pine and fir cones
beach stones
fern fronds

I'm embarking on a new project
"fluffing" and "feathering" my hobby room.

I took down my easel and put away my paints as I have not been using them and they take up so much space that I was not taking advantage of the space.

I am collecting a few bits and bobs that I love...
objects that bring me Joy
items that exude
a sense of calm and serenity.

It is a slow process and one not to force or rush.
Listening and looking...
experiencing the feelings a piece can evoke.

This never happens when I am busy or in a hurry.
Slowing down seems to help engage the creative side of my brain.

David Austin's Ballerina rose 
 soft shades of pink and cream 
looks like it could be featured in an issue of Victoria magazine.

I used to buy every issue of Victoria magazine...
Very few magazines have been purchased since I retired...
with the exception of Town and Country and Country Living UK
When I worked in the school I bought oodles of mags and would pour over them while savouring a chocolate bar and sipping tea.
Magazines were an escape from the stresses of work and trying to "do it all."
Home keeping, domestics, parenting, gardening, cooking, shopping etc...

Since retiring I have a looser schedule with fewer demands...
so it should be easy to take a day off here and there,
perhaps by setting unreasonable standards 
expecting a lot from myself and others is setting me up for failure.
Is striving for perfection the root of the problem?

See what happens when one has a few days to reflect on things!

I binge watched the newest season of Grace and Frankie On Netflix.
Love that series...

Jane Fonda and Lily Tomlin
Sam Waterston and Martin Sheen
and a crazy story line come together to make for a very entertaining show.

I had not considered TV viewing as down time 
but if it makes me laugh and I love the characters
and it feels like an indulgence
I consider it 
 "mental snack food!" 

This blog often masquerades as an online journal...
but by now you've probably already figured that out! 

Hope that your week is off to a great start...
thank you for stopping by the Humble Bungalow.

~ Be Well and Be Kind ~

Friday, May 27, 2016

Poppies, Pipes...and pouring money "Down the Drain!"

There is a crew of workers on site here in The Humble Bungalow.
I am trying to stay out of the way and hence am sitting at my lap top with a cafe creme.
Consciously trying to keep focused (busy) and let go of any anxiety associated with the chaos and noise that has been going on for the past few hours.

Not too sure where this post is going and whether it will be worthy of publishing but I do have a few lovely images to share with you...

This book in my Paris reading list was started yesterday and it has held my interest and was a welcome diversion while the plumbers were here trying to figure out what was wrong with our plumbing.

Turns out after hours of snaking and exploration and manual digging there is a hole in the sewer pipe that services our Humble Bungalow!
The backhoe will be excavating the rest of the pipe and the plumbers hope they can attach a new piece of pipe without digging up the front garden and tearing down the fence! (fingers crossed)

Let's take a look at the purple poppies shall we?

Aren't they beautiful?
So delicate and the petals are whisper thin, almost like crepe paper.

I plan to gather the poppy seed pods and sprinkle them in other parts of The Humble Garden for next year.

We have a purple iris planted in a pot by the front stairs.
The staff at the garden centre mentioned that deer do not seem to be attracted to the plant. So far the deer have avoided munching it as have been busy feasting on the tender new foliage of the limelight hydrangeas instead.

These sweet little flowers are a ground cover plant from my recent walk to Government House.
Does anyone know what they are called?
I thought they might be an ice plant but am not sure. 

Variegated roses from The Rose Garden at Government House.

They look so pretty...
almost like an artist has mixed two paints together.
"Mother Nature's Paintbrush"

The cats have been quite stressed with the commotion here...
noisy machines and lots of men about.

Yesterday they were so happy when we let them out.
Pepper looks pretty relaxed here...

Chester looks rather sad...
perhaps he is thinking great thoughts?

Yellow Caution Tape...
Watch out for holes and broken pipes.

100 year old clay pipes
high tech tools

The underwater camera is on the job...
our pipe looks clear to the street but the City Sewer that services the street appears to be blocked.
So we have a bigger problem...and apparently the other neighbours will be having some problems soon if they do not fix it.
I called the city Water Works and they are on their way to unblock the main and will come back on Monday to scope it.
So we can flush, wash dishes and clothes and shower to our heart's content after they leave!

I have been distracting myself all day by baking a family favourite.
Great Nana's Bread.

Just waiting for the loaves to rise before baking.

Home maintenance is an ongoing responsibility and one that we take very seriously.
We have been planning to paint the house for several years and it is our summer project.
We redid the roof and gutters two years ago and the more minor projects are lined up for each year and then we have a major project every other year.

When an unexpected "oops" like the broken sewer pipe pops up
 we have no other choice but to get on with it...

We may need to tighten our belts a bit in light of this unexpected expense.
Our savings account will need to be topped up.

I wonder if any of you have a great recipe for brioche?

I want to try my hand at baking some to enjoy with our home grown tomatoes.
I loved baking bread when the children were young and it has been years since I made a loaf of bread...there is something so homey about the smell of bread baking and it so hard to resist slicing into a warm loaf and slathering a piece with fresh salty butter...

Thank you for stopping by my blog.
Hope you have a fabulous weekend!

~ Be Well and Be Kind ~

Thursday, May 26, 2016

Strolling in a Victoria Rose Garden...

Glorious white Iceberg climbing Roses in the garden of Government House.

The roses look so elegant against the white stone wall.

One of the many Rose Gardens located within The Government House grounds.

The sound of running water adds such a calming sound to the space...
fountains are such a beautiful addition to a garden.

This gargoyle statue that has seen better days...
I wonder if someone took a hammer to his nose and ear 
or perhaps he once teetered and toppled over.

A visitor left a rose offering...

There are benches throughout the garden to sit and relax.

 The lush grounds of Government House is a lovely place for a walk.

There is a tea room located at stable and working area of the garden.
Hens and chicks are clucking away in a pen 
and last year there was a lamb onsite grazing on the grass.

The Tea room serves light lunches and teas and it is open Tuesdays through Saturdays in the high season.

Staffed by an army of dedicated volunteers Government House grounds are well tended and beautiful.
There is a small Costume and Government House Historic museum on the site with admission by donation.

If you find yourself in Victoria BC on a holiday you might want to include this garden while you are visiting.

I borrowed this book from the library and spent a few hours sipping tea 
while perusing the many gorgeous gardens featured inside...
looking at gardens is one of my favourite things to do.

Our Humble Bungalow looks best when the roses are all in bloom...
her paint is peeling and the painters will return shortly to give her a much needed makeover.

We are having some problems with the ancient plumbing. 
(which is not much fun...)
I am expecting a plumber with a snake and a camera attached to delve deeper and tell us what we need to do to remedy the situation...
I hope it will not mean that we need to dig up the garden and install a new sewer pipe...fingers crossed it is an easy fix that does not cost the earth!

Thank you for stopping by my humble blog.

~ Be Well and Be Kind ~

Tuesday, May 24, 2016

Victoria Day Long Weekend...aboard ship!

This past weekend was a long weekend so we took to the sea...

Our "humble" boat is a 27 foot 1996 Sea Ray Sundancer.

We can cruise fast or slow depending on the weather and our mood.

I always take flowers from the Humble Bungalow Garden.
My all time favourite David Austin Rose is Jude the Obscure.
I know it is not fair choosing just one rose but I cannot help myself...
as Jude is sheer perfection in a rose
Fragrance, form, and colour all exceptional.

I use silverware on the boat.
It might strike you as odd but there is a reason that we have this on board.
When I went shopping to outfit the boat with the few necessities that we needed I was trying to keep the costs down...
when one buys a boat it is usually a tad expensive so I tried to cut corners elsewhere...
I ventured into the big box stores looking for stainless sets and the ones I liked were around $100 a set.
I saw this one in the antique shop for less than half that and it is vintage WMF from Germany...I only need to polish it twice a year to keep it looking good.

I pack my tote bag full of books and magazines 
there is plenty of time to relax and read.

We eat simple meals.
I have a one burner stovetop, microwave and BBQ.
Our small fridge prevents us from bringing too much food!
I eat oatmeal with a wee bit of honey for breakfast and Mr. HB prefers V8 juice and a bagel.
Dinners and lunches revolve around salad and some type of protein...
maybe a few new baby potatoes with butter and fresh mint.

"Snacks" are often naughty...
chips and popcorn...

We try to walk or swim everyday.

I read Motherland by Maria Hummel.
It is a well written story about the hardships that women and their families had to live through during the Second World War. 

It held my interest right from the very first page...
I highly recommend it.

I am a magnet for mosquitoes so I need to wear these bracelets!

Here is the beautiful morning view at Poets Cove Resort on Pender Island.

The roses in the morning sunshine.

We went for a hike in the forest.

It was cool in the shade and there was a lot of buzzing so I was glad that I wore my mosquito bracelet!

The rocky shoreline is mostly sandstone.

The weather was much better than we had anticipated...
blue skies and sunshine and very little wind.
My favourite kind of weather for cruising!

This is the view the last morning 
before we packed up and came home.

Today I am doing laundry...and the skies are grey and the weather cool.
I am so grateful that we had such nice weather for our getaway.
Our house and cat sitter made the weekend possible and I am so thankful.

I am still trying to figure out why my blog will not appear on the Feed as soon as I publish it and I have contacted Blogger but have not heard anything yet.
I am using smaller images on this post to see if that is what is the delay...
so please bear with me as I work on sorting out this issue.

~ Be Well and Be Kind ~