Thursday 28 February 2019

Purging, decluttering

There are a couple of styles of decluttering, including the originals I used to watch, i.e., hoarders. In this style, you create three piles of throw, sell or keep

There are many people, like our dear Yam, whose spiritual journey means neither her mind or her space is cluttered. I admire her. I know I clutter, from my days teaching I never threw anything out as we used toilet paper rolls for crafts, and you never know. I retired in 2007. I finally got rid of my teaching materials I kept for years. I just deleted my teaching and book blogs. It was time.

Marie Kondo is a hoot. She's been on all the talk shows for her #1 New York Times best-selling book, "The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up." First you give thanks to your space. Then you purge your clothes, then your books, papers, and miscellaneous treasures, thanking them for their service. The question is, "Do they give you joy?" The key feature is not to go room-by-room, as many advocate, attacking them one at a time. Kondo advocated that you declutter by category. She has an interesting style for putting shirts in drawers.
Now, I can see this in Japan. Our kids did an Around the World Tour and rented an AirBnB apartment there for a week. It was SO small. You have to do this: be conscious of clutter in small spaces. Condo living is different.
Osaka, hostel
The beds fold up for the daytime.
The Tokyo AirBnB stove had never been used, the kids thought, and the oven didn't fit anything much larger than Caitlin's passport! 

They are all wonderful protocols. I've been working to clean up. I've lacked a certain amount of motivation. It's true that we gardeners and naturalists exploit summer for outdoor play, especially with the recent freeze/thaw and snowstorms. I should have been doing indoor work, but...

I did really well in the basement. We won't be having Gramma Camp for awhile, perhaps until summer. I figured it was a good time to reorganize. We had time around Christmas with all 4 of our granddaughters, the younger two were here for a visit, there was a bit of chaos left.
There are reasons this retired teacher has three antique school desks! Izzy loves playing school.
(You'll note those 6 boxes of books beside the piano, all my books that remain unsold. I've been using them, sans covers, for kindling.)

It's a quirky living room. How many people have a caterpillar in their living room? The cats, over the years, have loved it.

It took me 18 years to change the living room around, but then I lobbied 6 years for a new carpet! My chair used to be in front of the window, but now I can face it and still watch the birds.

Books are Kondo's big deal. We love our books, but do pass them on to the library for their book sales.
How about you? Do you have an urge to purge?!

Wednesday 27 February 2019 builds character

I'll just leave this here...

🚓ONTARIO ROADS 🚗 are a mess.

The driveway is coming along. The warm sun melts the ice around the asphalt. The ice on the driveway is several inches thick. I've been bashing away at it with the chopper.

The birds, the 10 red squirrels and one black squirrel have been enjoying the freshly cleaned birdbath. I did that in our thaw.

He sits and watches for the blue jay bullies.

My wood is frozen to the ground, with the melt. The big logs were too big to fit into the fireplace, but I'm not sure I could split them in the log splitter.

Down in the forest, the fisher or pine marten trips about.
predator from Jennifer Jilks on Vimeo.

wild turkeys 1 from Jennifer Jilks on Vimeo.

I love how it herds the turkeys.
Wild turkeys from Jennifer Jilks on Vimeo.

Tuesday 26 February 2019

Indoor cats, outdoor weather

It's been a wet, cold February. The photographic opportunities lie in the wetland. Friends on Facebook lay on beaches. After our 15 mm rainfall, it's tough walking.
I stopped, with a dirty camera lens, to grab an anticrepuscular cloud and sky shot.

With the freeze thaw, the snowblower froze to the garage floor! (It thawed the next sunny day!)

For those nagging us to keep cats indoors, not a problem.
Annabelle hunkered down on my pillow. JB made the bed around her. Do you like my new nightie?! A touch of colour on these dark days.

I so miss my Daisy May. We had such joy together on our forest walks. We are all calmer and happier without the stress. Hooper and Annabelle like to sit on top of me, Hooper on my lap, Annie on the footrest.

I snapped these with the zoom lens, through the window! That lovely frozen rain...

In the dark, and the thawing days, Butch arose from slumber. They've been quiet in the deep cold.

Monday was hell for some people. Lake Effect Snow is common around the Great Lakes. Six hours to clear the scene, 70 cars involved. One minute you are fine, the next, snow squalls. Ribbons of snow. This is winter!

Only minor injuries, thankfully, even a cop was hurt. Very lucky.
Lake effect snow... the ribbons of snow are amazing.

The wind map is interesting, from my armchair!  The winds pick up the moisture from the lakes. It all depends on the weather, and if the lakes are frozen over. If not, the winds pick up even more moisture from warm, open lakes. The lines show the wind direction. You can check out the surface temperatures there, with annual comparisons.
animated surface currents

Monday 25 February 2019

A bloody mystery Part 2

My previous post was about finding blood, then fur in the snow [A bloody mystery Part 1]. The next day, Saturday morning, I suited up: snowshoes, backpack with water, camera, GPS, and off I went.
It was supposed to rain Saturday night, so I thought I'd best follow the trail while I could. It is beautiful and peaceful on the frozen wetland. I follow the deer trails, as it is much easier to walk. This time, I had a mission, to see if I could see what happened.

The blood drops lessened.

There were lots of deer beds. This next one, below, looks like where our victim bedded down. Happily, after that, the blood spots were absent. I'm glad I had the GPS, as it's easy to get turned around. The constant moan of traffic helps!

Isn't it beautiful?!

I'd gone from solving the mystery, to wandering. The snow is incredible, powdery, and deep in spots. It's best to follow the track. I had to take my coat off, I was overheated! The bulrushes accumulates the powdery snow, it's difficult walking, even with snowshoes.

The deere navigate around trees, making it difficult walking in snowshoes. They don't have a care about low-lying branches, either.

I recognised the tall cedars, that and the GPS helped.

THEN, I tripped! It was a soft landing. Tricky to get up, though, when you put your hands down, and they sink up to your shoulders! It is just like standing back up on skis, be careful where you place them. I wondered if I'd have to take them off, but I managed.

I know this tree! It's on 'the point.'

This evergreen is on the back 40.

I did well. It's easy tracking with drops of bright red blood in the snow. Excellent exercise. The sun was warm. My average speed was pretty lame, but I was in deep snow! I was only out 1 1/2 hours, I should have shut the GPS off, and stopped tracking when I arrived home.

Hubby went walking above the arena, while I snowshoed, then he went to watch curling, did some shopping, and he brought me home a pizza for lunch and dinner, which he cannot have. After I snuggled under a blanket, I had a hot bubble bath with epsom salts.
The only idea I had, we've been watching the deer for signs, was this yearling with something on its chest.