black flies

Yesterday we started early and cleaned until we dropped. The realtor was showing the house at 1:45 p.m., and we managed to get a lot done and to leave before they arrived. Tired and satisfied, we headed towards Harriet and Hogan’s cottage, to visit with them while they were there for the long weekend. Since we heard nothing from the realtor, we were left to accept a dinner invitation, and enjoyed a wonderful BBQ chicken dinner.

During our visit Attia and I, and Harriet and Hogan, all bundled into our car and drove over to the camp. The black flies were out in full force, they swarmed in clouds around our heads, but for some reason they did not bite me! The camp looked quite different than it had on our last visit. Yesterday the leaves were budding, and the forest floor was a carpet of trilliums and Mayflowers. Hogan and Attila went off a ways into the bush, behind the camp, which had been owned by my Grandparents and is now owned by my Mom and Uncle.

We are still waiting to see if the purchase goes through for the camp, but perhaps we will find out by this coming Friday.

We also wandered around my Grandparent’s house and were relieved and happy to find that it had not been broken into again, and nothing had been disturbed! Harriet and Hogan had cut the “grass” and straightened things up, so everything looked neat and tidy.

Today is sunny and warm. We are still working on our country house today, but are only puttering, as oppposed to working with an intense focus on completing a particular task. Attila is transplanting ferns to the shady area of the front garden, and working to spruce up the yard. I am cleaning the windows exposed when the “boards” were removed from the windows. We had boarded up the windows for the winter to help reduce heating costs and Attila’s work load. I have stewed fresh rhubarb and finished all the picky jobs like washing dishes and making beds.

The Periwinkle is in bloom!

Attila and I really enjoy the results of our labour, a clean house feels and smells so good!

Worldly Distractions


Date: 11:00 AM EDT Monday 19 May 2014
Condition: Mostly Cloudy
Pressure: 102.4 kPa
Visibility: 16 km
Temperature: 13.8°C
Dewpoint: 4.1°C
Humidity: 52%
Wind: W 17 km/h


“Early bird

Oh, if you’re a bird, be an early bird
And catch the worm for your breakfast plate.
If you’re a bird, be an early bird—
But if you’re a worm, sleep late.”

Shel Silverstein

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I’m the worm – I guess. I yearn to sleep late! Something always gets me out of bed fairly early though, and all I want is to languish in bed until I can’t languish any longer… it just never happens. I am not the earliest bird in the nest, but it’s too early for my druthers… I am a worm at heart!


Bex, I would love to sleep late, and begin the day with a groggy smile, waking slowly over a mug of hot coffee. But what do I get? Awake by the time the first bird chirps at dawn, mind running through a dozen or more plans, ideas tumbling about in all directions! I long to be a worm, but must concede that my natural role in life is the early bird!


Your black flies give me the shudders! You’re a brave woman, Maggie-but then, we already knew that.

No matter how all these pending adventures eventually evolve, it sounds as if everything you’re doing is yielding results you’ll enjoy. Good for both of you.


Wendy, the black flies are horrid. I am lucky, in that I merely get chunks bitten out of skin, which bleed then itch, then go away. Other people swell and itch for long periods of time, with each bite; for them the black flies are an absolute nightmare. The advantage to blackflies is that they hate the indoors and will fly to a window to escape, where they are easily seen and killed. The disadvantage to blackflies is that they crawl into dark places, like down your back, into your hair, into you trousers… some areas they bite are worse than others! They only swarm for a month or so, then the mosquitoes take over…

In one way I do not like so many plans to be “up in the air”, but the part about it I do like is that this time is rich in possibility!

Tom McCubbin

Hi Maggie! Sorry I haven’t been keeping up well with the bloggers lately. Hope to get back to that one day soon. I still shiver when I think of your accounts of this past winter! The black fly thing sounds like a new round of adventure.


Tom, good to see you back at your blog! The past winter was one to remember, and hopefully it was a one-off, and not a new and long lasting weather trend! Where we live there are what they call “Muskoka Rooms”, screened in porches; these are more than mere luxury! Those who can afford it have large and well equipped Muskoka Rooms, so that they can enjoy the outdoors and indulge in outdoor activities such as reading a book, sitting quietly with morning coffee, etc. We have a little screened in porch that wouldn’t really qualify for the elevated status of a Muskoka Room, but we can get two chairs comfortably into it… if we had time to sit down together!