Gardening #4: Signs of Harvest

Its taken a month to get the next gardening update in but here we are!

The main reason is that I haven’t done much gardening and there really hasn’t been much to update on. Most of my blooms from spring lasted quite a little while and now that summer is here, the garden is flourishing especially with the crazy amount of rain we got before the last few days of extreme heat.

Without further ado, lots to talk about. Let’s check it out!

Water Garden

Water Lilies

Compared to the 4 leaves it had when I first got it, this lovely water garden (aka. my one water lily) has a ton of leaves and two flower buds. Of course, one of them is blooming. I was so happy to see that I wasn’t doing anything wrong and taking good care of it. Its so nice to see during the day when I wake up and look outside that its thriving.

Front Garden

On one side of the garden, my Dianthus actually is blooming finally. It took long enough. I probably am thinking of moving it and replacing it with a row of hostas or something because this spot just lacks so much sun and along with bad soil that is still taking time to be better, its just making this grow so slow. My neighbors’ hostas were blooming at least a week before mine and they look like a few times bigger. However, I’m still trying to figure out what my big reno work for the front yard is so I’m hesitant to just move a plant and then have to move it again the year after.

 flowers

Another reason to redo the front is that my flower patch is starting to look really overgrown. I think its just that, in terms of flowers. I have flowers that open in spring, summer and fall which works great but then its so dense around. I just need to sit down and figure out what I want to keep. However, looking at all the flowers right now, I’m really happy. Obviously there is the Crimson Star as always but I do kind of want to move it now since its just out of control big.

Then we have these two. The roses were planted last year in this spot and I was worried that it wouldn’t make it but its small and cute but still managed to get 3 flowers bloomed. I’m so happy to see the touch of red. At the same time, the newcomer this year is this furry little plant and its also starting to bloom. I don’t think this is in the right spot but once I open up my side garden when its not suffocating weather for the bee/butterfly garden, this will go right in there.

Backyard

Raspberry Patch

Not a whole lot of change with these two except for just growth. Yeah, look at the raspberries. Apparently trimming it makes it grow even more out of control. Sad part is that we never got around to the strawberries but we fed a lot of happy bunnies. I’m not too mad about it. I’ve just accepted that its a reality. We are thinking of putting in some fences around it but its not going to make a difference.

Along the Patio

As for this little patch, I just opened up this year. Its actually looking alright. Everything is growing a little slow and I think it has to do with the soil quality. Nothing has died yet and I can see the little Cone Flower at the end still growing strong. Its not as big as the one in the back and nowhere near it, but once it adapts to its move, it should do much better next year (provided it survives).

Container Garden

We are lucky that we got a ton of lettuces this year because after the first harvest, we lost two already from the cucumber pot. However, everything else, particularly the kale is thriving. I have some lettuce coming back. My new non-lazy watering strategy is making everything grow beautifully. The cucumbers are looking fantastic. Actually they have a lot of flowers and some cucumbers forming so fingers crossed that we’ll get some harvest soon-ish, but not going to count my chickens before they hatch. We literally have kale feasts now. Its just way too big and we can’t eat it fast enough. The biggest success is that the bell peppers experiment turned out the the container one is doing much better. The picture is dark but if you squint really hard, you’ll see that there are two bell peppers growing. At the same time, this mosquito repellent garden is looking the best in the last few years. I’m really happy with it.

Vegetable Garden

In terms of the vegetable garden, I once again forgot a before and after picture. I just spent Canada Day weekend getting rid of all the horrible oxalis grass covering the entire area. Its one of the reasons I think that the cucumbers are looking yellow and sad. We did go to the Dollarama to pick up a sprinkler hose which is a great addition, except you might want to consider getting it somewhere a little better and more durable. Ours already broke twice so its already having a lot of duct tape fixes. What I can I expect with a $3 product? However, it lets me walk away to water the container garden while it just takes care of the watering for me. Zucchinis are the only one in this plot that has some growing. I’m hoping that it’ll all work out. Everything else is just moving along, except my herbs on the side. The lavender needs to probably be moved but my mint is out of control.

Overall & What to look forward to…

There been a ton of growth here. While there are some losses, its actually doing really well this year. I added in a watering system to the kale and cucumber container because it was just draining too much. Actually the watering systems work really well, especially the past few days when its been record high temperatures of 44 degrees Celsius or something. I do warn that the next update will be in August as we are coming up to Montreal Comiccon and Fantasia Film Festival. It might put a little stop in some stuff depending on the situation. However, I always have my first week of vacation coming up so hopefully we will have some more projects. I have a few goals. Maybe finally opening up my plot but we need something else to happen first which is in the works.

That’s it for this gardening update!
How is your gardens looking? Any harvest?

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Heat Wave, Home Stuff & Luck!

I realize I talk about weather a lot but its the Montrealer in me. The proof is right HERE in #14 ;).  Well, at least you all gain knowledge about how Montreal’s weather is doing, right?

This week has been calm for the most part (although a lot of you still seem to find my life crazy busy…which it isn’t).  The goal of this post is to see the positives in the little thing.  Even when its just the simplest things going on.  Sure, my weekend is busy especially on hot days because I’m accepting that its the part of owning a house. Plus, its slowing down at work so I find myself trying to fit in what I didn’t have time to do before August.

Anyways, this week has been rather special for various reasons and I’m about to get into my next little steps that I’d like to share.

1) Surprise Sunflowers

sunflowers

Sunflowers

Some of you would agree that July is kind of the dead season for flowers and gardening.  The garden is just green.  A few weeks ago, I talked about the hard work of squirrels burying sunflower seeds in our front yard and after a few small ones bloomed, a gigantic one bloomed last week and its just a lovely yellow delight.

Flowers always make me happy 🙂

Do you like flowers? Whats your favorite ones?

2) Harvests

Raspberry and Tomato

Raspberry and Tomato

I haven’t gotten a picture of my raspberry harvests to show yet.  This week’s was by far the best harvest so far and I see lots coming out.  I just need to find a way to prop up the leaves so it has room to grow freely.  I actually need to do the same for my yellow zucchini plant as well.

3) Winning an Advanced Screening

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I never win anything. EVER. My luck is shot.  I think it has to do with having used up a lot of luck finding the amazing people that entered my life so I have none for anything else. So, when I got the email that I won these advanced screening tickets for Sin City: A Dame to Kill For. I was skeptical until I actually got the pass in the mail.  Which I did on Monday and invited my best friend to go with me.  Although, I’ve been completely ridiculously slow at putting up my post for Guardians of the Galaxy, I pushed myself to at least put this one up because its a significant event in my life, one that makes me feel so very lucky 🙂 If you missed my double review of Sin City 1&2, head on over HERE.

Have you seen Sin City: A Dame to Kill For? What did you think?

4) Cleaning Plushies

First batch of plushies

First batch of plushies

As said in the beginning, this weekend was gorgeous. It was just so hot with a nice little cool breeze here and there. I’m at the stage of moving where its the dusty little plushies that need to move so I brought the first batch over and gave them all a nice wash.  The first batch are the smaller ones and my non-Disney collection ones.  Oh right, I collect Disney plushies but its really for the goal of hitting ALL the Disney stores eventually 😉 So, feeling a little bit more accomplished, I hung these up and they pretty much spent a good part of the weekend drying off.  The small took only the Saturday whereas, there was two larger ones (not here) that are still drying today 🙂

Next batch is next weekend for the Disney, my guess is Zazu, Classic Mickey and Stitch might get the second round 😉 Maybe a few more…I don’t know yet.  Maybe I’ll let the relatively new Bambi join in.  Dumbo, Lady and Tramp are the oldest bunch so they might be the hardest to clean.

Do you own collections? What do you like to collect?

5) New Fruit Discoveries

Pluot/Plumcots

Pluot/Plumcots

I love Costco for many reasons.  Oh yeah, so many reasons, one of them is the gluten-free choices I talk about all the time.  Now, the other one includes having all these awesome fruit selections.  I find Costco fruit a bit pricey but when I saw these little beauties and had no idea what they were.  I figured they must be those hybrid fruits and they were.  These are called Pluots or online says, Plumcots.  Its a mix of plums and apricots except its closer to the plum taste (whereas if you had aprium then it’d be more apricot taste).  These taste very delightful and I can see them going very well in pies, tarts, even crumb bars. If we don’t finish them before they get completely ripe, I’ll probably have to use them to bake 😉

Have you tried any hybrid fruits? Have you tried Pluots/Plumcots/Apriums?

6) Garden Mission

Garden Mission

Garden Mission

The downside of buying the house in winter is not seeing what the garden looks like or how the previous owners cared for it.  Thats something I’ve learned.  My previous owners were certainly not in the green thumb category because now that everything has pretty  much grown, I can just see how disastrous and neglected it was. So after I went crazy cutting and freeing one of the plants in the back so that they have some sort of space and order, I started pulling out weeds (still!).  Now I have patches of empty soil sitting around waiting for some grass seeds to fill up the space.

My mission on Sunday ended with this patch which could look so nice but with the ungroomed overgrown hedges here, it just looks like a mess.  Do you see the chrysanthemum? No, right? Well, its there. And this picture was after I already pulled out a ton of plants and vine-y weeds. How to fix this mess?

I have so many plants to pull out because its just way overgrown and too much. This is the final month before things switch around.

And please, someone tell me what leaves bear tiny apple-like fruits and sheds bark, leaves and twigs in the middle of August? I’m stumped! I’ve been searching for the two gigantic trees and the type and I just can’t find it.  Maybe I should have taken a picture but I’m still a bit angry that I’m the only crazy person raking leaves in August..haha!

7) The Lion King Musical

The Lion King Musical

I love musicals. This year, I already gave up a bunch of concerts because I’m trying to budget my money better. I was about to give up The Lion King musical until there was a 25% off coupon online for some pretty awesome seats.  Yesterday, me and my girl friends went out to see it at Place des Arts. We had balcony seats, which is a completely different experience.  Plus, whats nice is that being in the balcony, you get to see the animals walking down the aisles and then the people in the upper balconies and around.  The show is just so fun.  The singing, the costumes and the props: all so beautiful. Its really one of the best musicals I’ve seen.  My favorite was the starting of the second part and there was the bird props soaring all over the room.  It was so magical 🙂

Have you seen The Lion King Musical before?

8) Inspiring (and Energetic) Music

Shattered Glass – Brad Paisley

Footprints (Kaaze remix) – Tiesto

Just two really  nice songs with different styles depending on what you like that has really caught my attention.  I love Brad Paisley’s new single Shattered Glass because the video is amazing and the message is inspiring. As for electronic music, I love to listen to it to sort of detach a little and relax.

What songs/music have you been listening to?

Its been an epic week! I spent time with a lot of my girl friends, my garden is progressing, the move is going well and we even started painting the dining room which is making my head spin because its a leap of faith whether the walls and color will match.

I’m not sure if its the heat or the sudden change in weather or just a lack of sleep causing it, but I’m feeling a little under the weather with a sore throat creeping up.  Hopefully, with more sleep and more water, I’ll get rid of it.  Today’s energy level is a bit low so I’ll end it here. I’ll get something fun tomorrow.

Also, this week, look forward to FINALLY  the Guardians of the Galaxy post and a few posts from my Saguenay weekend getaway 🙂

Happy Monday, my lovelies!

Summer Fun Keeps Going On! :)

I can’t think of creative titles for summer anymore.  There’s only so many ways I can say that this summer is totally awesome.  The weather is beautiful and I’ve had some nice activities and some cool stuff coming up.  I’ve been totally loving the festivals and I think the autumn round of festivals in Montreal are the next ones I’m looking at now. Life’s been really treating me nice.  I’ve thought a few things through, set a few priorities straight and learned a whole lot about myself.  Really? That revelation in the last week made me extremely grateful to be alive and breathing. Sure, things don’t go perfect everyday but I also learned that with the bad comes the good and thats how things balance out.  I’m absolutely fine with that because at the end of the day, its the good stuff that sticks in my mind. I think back and I smile before I go to bed to welcome the next day.

Yes, rambling again..I know.  Still, lets check out some nice stuff that happened this week 🙂

1) Planning Weekend Getaways

Quebec roads

On the way to Saguenay Lac St Jean, 2012

I used this picture for last week’s photo challenge but its relevant to what I’m about to say.  I actually have a weekend getaway coming up soon (*ahem* like this weekend).  My boyfriend and I have been obsessing over our house so much that we just thought it would be a good idea to go away for a weekend since this is his last week of vacation this year.  So, we’re heading back to the beautiful and scenic Saguenay Lac St Jean area of Quebec.  Thats the road we probably will be travelling again through a fauna reserve/park. We have some hiking planned and a festival and perhaps some shopping if there are some good deals.  Maybe some waterfront walking.  In general, just time to relax.

I may have another weekend getaway coming up with my girl friends but thats still in discussion 😉

Some people save money for luxury products/makeup/clothes, etc. I like to save it up for my house and going away (and movies).  What can I say? We all have our little pleasures.

2) Sweet Potato Flowers

Sweet Potato

Sweet potato flower

I didn’t really know that sweet potatoes had flowers but apparently this one does and they have this cute light hue of purple.  It was hidden under the crazy amount of leaves but I saw it this past weekend and snapped a quick photo of it.

3) Raspberries!

Raspberry plant

Raspberries growing

They aren’t quite red and ripe yet but my raspberries are quite abundant.  They are drinking water like crazy and I’m actually struggling to keep them hydrated with the intense heat that took over last week.  I filled up two bottles and 24 hours later it was all gone.  Maybe its time for a 3rd bottle or just soak the soil through before inserting another bottle.  I’ll probably have to check that out tonight.

4) Into the Storm Advanced Screening!

Into the storm

If you follow my blog, you already know that I’ve been increasing the whole output of movie reviews and who knows, maybe I’ll change it to Tranquil Dreams Reviews one day. Its definitely something rolling around in my head since I do reviews of movies among other things.  Or I’ll expand it a little.  Whatever it is, I’m passionate about movies and Fantasia Festival this year has given me a few revelations.  One is that I’ve become more confident in my opinion of movies because when I sit in the Q&A and I listen to the questions, I realize that a lot of people actually have similar overanalytical personalities.  Like, although I’m scared to talk about it sometimes like ask about it during Q&A, I secretly have thought that.  Just a few movies have made me feel like, I’m not totally crazy..haha! Thats already pretty good and its a nice feeling.

Anyways, we’re not here to talk about that..  My FIRST advanced screening, my friends.  I may have not gotten the special screening of Guardians of the Galaxy but man, this was a completely different experience just being at the advanced screening and for a movie I wanted to see, Into the Storm 🙂

Review for that coming up with the next 24 hours 😉 I’m a tad behind on reviews but I’m trying to write the best I can for them so I’m giving each movie a few days to sink in a little.

5) Shopping spree!

I’ve been really trying to change my wardrobe a little since my style has slightly changed as well and its been a while that I’ve stocked up on summer clothes, especially  not that I’m a tad more comfortable with my physical appearance.  I need to get back to working out and toning but point is, I’ve been more comfortable with everything and well, the initial idea was to go groceries and to look for new shoes for work.  I usually go in running shoes but then when I want to wear summer dresses, I need flats.  I ended up coming home with some wedge sandals which look pretty good and are rather adorable. You can see them up there.  I got the beige ones.  I also got some clothes on sale at Dynamite and for those who don’t know, Jacob is bankrupt so everything is on sale right now 40-60% off and I got that dress which still cost me quite a bit but the quality was worth it 🙂

6) Date Night

The Drownsman

Date Night with my boyfriend is a rarity nowadays, especially when it means moving our butts from our place.  This weekend, it was a date afternoon till night.  I had scheduled in two movies: The Drownsman and Time Lapse and we were out from 4pm till midnight.  The two movies weren’t disappointing and one totally exceeded my expectations.  Plus, both was hosted by people involved in the movie.  The Drownsman, which is the picture you see up there had almost its whole cast there and a bunch of people involved from director, producers, editors, sounds, etc. It filled up the whole stage.  Time Lapse also had it too with their producers and screenwriters.  It was very awesome.

Then we actually discovered in between the movies, a restaurant called Charcos Rotisseries, a chicken place.  We stopped there for dinner.

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This place makes some pretty delicious fries.  I found the Chicken fingers a bit dry but the grilled vegetables were done really well. My boyfriend at the chicken burger and he said it was heavenly.  We followed up with iced tea lemonades at Starbucks and then a little bit of arcades in between the two movies.

7) At home Brunch

Brunch

Brunch

My boyfriend started his last week of vacation so on Sunday morning, we went for early groceries and he was super awesome and made us a complete hearty breakfast with scrambled eggs, hash browns and bacon.  Yummy! 🙂

8) ONE FINAL REVELATION

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Yup, right on! I made a lot of revelations this year about myself: blogging, movies, analysis, life, work, positive outlook and the final one I had just last night was fully accepting this. I’m completely okay with this but I saw something last night and reminded me that there are some things thats really worth it to let go of. Not a frequent occurrence so I won’t say too much.

Now, before I leave you, how about some music to loosen up the mood a little?

Super fun video for Sam Tsui’s Wildfire.  Love it! 🙂

Now that overtime is over and Fantasia is rolling to its end with one more movie left, I’m all yours…well, until I go on my getaways, that is 😉

Happy Monday my lovelies! 🙂