It is a lazy weekend here at Mist Cottage. Rain was predicted, but only a few drops fell yesterday, and it looks like it will be a partially cloudy and dry day today.
Attila is preserving resources by using bath water for watering the garden. He has a large plastic garbage can that he fills, bucketful by bucketful, after he bathes. Within 24 hours the water is used to water the garden, and the garbage can is cleaned for the next time. Our rain barrels are empty now, so this is his preferred way to water the gardens. He feels it is going to be a hot, dry summer. I take showers, so I can see the time coming soon when I will be asked to shower with the plug in the drain, so that the water can be retained and carried out to the gardens. Attila is a keen gardener, a keen recycler, and a keen bargain seeker. Our water bills are substantial enough already, without adding garden watering to the bill.
I am still learning the idiosyncrasies of keeping the house cool during hot sunny days. Last night the house was unpleasantly warm during the night, 25C, and we both slept poorly as a result. I had the windows open all day yesterday. Today I am taking a different approach. I had the windows open at 7:00 a.m., and the interior temperature dropped to 23C by 10:00 a.m. At 10:30 a.m. the interior temperature began to rise, to 23.5C, as the outdoor temperature climbed. I then closed all the windows, and hope to retain the interior temperature at 23.5C. I will open the windows again when the exterior temperature falls below the interior temperature of the house.
The mosquitoes were out in force this morning. This is very strange, as there has been little rain, and everything is dry out there. There are no ponds or uncovered water sources anywhere about. They are swarming out of the grass in the front yard, and in the shady spots in the back yard. They have to be hatching in the lawn, not in water as is commonly believed. I have been bitten twice already this morning.
Our first Iris of the season has bloomed. It had few blooms last summer, as it had just been transplanted to a sunnier spot. It has copious blooms this spring, and will be a real pleasure to behold from the kitchen window, for the next week or so. The Lungwort continues to bloom in the front yard. The Crabapple blossoms are almost all spent, the hum of the bees outside my window is diminishing. The Lilacs are still blooming, providing a heavenly scent as I sit on the back porch.
The vegetable garden is coming along. The recently planted climbing beans and peas are peeking out of the soil. They are on the inside of the fence.
Over the past few weeks, Attila and I have both been plotting to keep the rabbits out of the fenced in area, so that they will not eat our emerging, tender and tasty, bean and pea plants. Square lengths of posts were laid along the bottom of gates to block entry. A large concrete block was used to cover the gap under the fence by the yard waste compost pile. Stakes were pounded in between gaps in fence posts, and anywhere where it seemed entry might be gained.
Despite all of these precautions, early last week I looked out to see another little rabbit in the fenced in area. Quickly shoving my feet in to my rubber boots, out I went. I calmly followed that little bunny around the yard, as he/she attempted to escape through all the usual entry points, now blocked. Eventually that little bunny found a gap that had been left vulnerable, and escaped the way she/he had entered. That forgotten gap was immediately blocked, and I haven’t seen a rabbit in the fenced in area since.
Yesterday I baked a second Rhubarb Crisp. I had two helpings, and quite honestly, by evening the sugar made me feel polluted. During the night I awoke several times feeling off, with a horrid taste in my mouth. I love eating the Rhubarb Crisp, but will have to limit myself to one serving… or less if that doesn’t resolve the polluted feeling. Rhubarb needs a lot of sugar to make it palatable, as it is low in sugar, and tastes tart, which is unpleasant to my palate.
Time to go sit out on the back porch and read, or listen to the breeze in the trees, or watch for rabbits, or watch the birds… great day for it! There are freshly washed sheets strung on the clothesline across the porch, which means it will be shady, cool, and breezy on the porch.
Date: 8:00 AM EDT Sunday 27 May 2018
Condition: Mostly Cloudy
Pressure: 101.4 kPa
Dew point: 14.4°C
Wind: NE 14 km/h
Visibility: 24 km
(Note: these readings are taken by the shores of Lake Ontario, they are hotter in summer and cooler in winter a short distance north of the lake.)
“The way you define yourself as a writer is that you write every time you have a free minute. If you didn’t behave that way you would never do anything.”
Your irises are beautiful! I can imagine the smell of the lilacs, as gramma had lilac bushes in her yard. (I’m with you, I don’t like sour things, either!)
For the rhubarb, have you ever tried honey? We have a friend who just spent 2 weeks in Scotland and she came over with a jar of “Heather Honey” for us from there. What a lovely wonderful flavor it had – quite different from the usual clover honey we always use.
While it’s hot (near 30C) here during the day, it cools off rapidly in the evening. We’re opening our windows around 7PM. During the day, we have our windows closed and the air conditioning on. With the new windows, the AC doesn’t come on until mid-afternoon and is only on once or twice during the day.
Thanks Joan! I love Irises, they are so colourful and pretty, and they grow in soil that other plants find difficult. The scent of lilac is wonderful, and they are so beautiful too. Sour, yuck! 🙂
Bex, 3 teaspoons of honey has 17gm of sugar. White sugar has 12.6 gm of sugar in 3 teaspoons.
I have to limit sugar in any form, my body appreciates the added micro-nutrients in honey, molasses, maple syrup etc., but I still have to limit myself to less than 25 mg per day, that is 6 teaspoons, or 2 tablespoons.
My rhubarb crisp has 78 teaspoons of sugar in it, so one very small serving, 1/12th, would have 6 teaspoons of sugar, my whole daily intake. That would mean no sweetener in my morning coffee, no dried fruit in my morning cereal, and avoiding all condiments with sugar in them, like ketchup, relishes, sauces, the list goes on. Is one tiny bit of rhubarb crisp worth giving up everything else with flavour for the whole day? Maybe once. If I eat more sugar than my quota, I begin to experience health issues, and at my age I am not inviting those in the door if I can slam it shut on them.
I LOVE sugar. And salt. And butter. All lead my body into misery, so sad. I wish I was one of those people who “can eat anything”, but I am not.
Teri, your strategy is a good one. It really does pay to have good windows!!
Today the thermometer outside the kitchen window peaked at 35C. I think though, that the real temperture out there was a humid 29C.
The windows here were opened at 6:00 a.m. the temperature fell from 23C to 20C by 9:30 a.m. I closed the house up completely, and closed all curtains where sun might enter. This evening the temperature is back up to 23C inside the house, and the humidity is only 55%, very comfortable compared to the conditions outside right now. If the humidity stays high out of doors this evening, I won’t open up the house at all, but will set the air conditioning to 23C. Tomorrow is supposed to be much cooler, but the humidity is such a big factor for comfort, I’ll have to test it out to see if it is worth opening up the house at all over the next few days.