Iris on a sunny day.

Big excitement here today, a large dead branch fell, from the top of a dead white birch tree, near the house. It didn’t hit anything but the ground, with a mighty thump. Mist didn’t feel the vibration, so maybe it wasn’t exactly earth shattering. But that is my news, here in the bush.

Attila has contracted a skin and eye reaction to Hogweed. Bad stuff. He will be all right, we drove for an hour last night to visit the emergency ward at the nearest hospital. We even found a drug store open to fill the prescriptions he was given. He was already feeling better this morning. I can attest to the undesirability of coming into contact with Hogweed. Attila has been having a miserable time of it. He is on the mend now though.

We visited the little house in the city again last weekend. Attila had Saturday off work. He will get another Saturday off work in July, so that is it, for getting much done this summer at the little house in the city. We accomplished a lot while we were there. We tackled the lawn and gardens, and this time round I removed about a half bushel of dandelions from around the back porch. Slow going, those dandelions seemed the size of cabbages; they had been growing there for years.

Attila finished the last few tasks, installing the new gate. He also turned over a new section in the garden for tomato plants, which we will plant next time we visit. I did my usual go-for jobs, or is it gofer, picking up new work clothes that Attila was in dire need of, while we were near stores that sell such things. He now has decent footwear for work, to keep his feet dry and safe from harm. He has had a challenging spring, with boots that leaked, with all the rain we’ve had.

We had been putting off working on the bathroom until we decided whether the tub could be salvaged, or needed to be replaced. It had a lot of those Rubbermaid sticky things on it; black and tattered and totally disgusting. If we could not remove them, we would replace the tub. Attila set to and removed them with a paint scraper and baking soda. Baking soda does an amazing job at cleaning! So we will keep the tub. Which is a relief, because they are expensive to buy new.

We have decided to proceed with removing the wallboard and drywall. Removing it will mean that we cannot use the shower until the walls are reconstructed and finished. I have decided to cut my hair short, so that I can wash it quickly under the tub tap. We will be able to take baths, so it is just hair washing that is problematic, and only for me.

I have ordered the plumbing fixtures, to replace the rusted and worn out ones that exist. The new fixtures will not arrive for several weeks. We will be working on the bathroom in dribs and drabs for the rest of the summer.

I hope to travel down to the little house in the city by myself, and stay there for several weeks, to work on the place. Of course, my pace will be very slow, so I don’t know how much I will accomplish, but at least the tomatoes will get watered!

We have Macs, so I was going to keep in touch with Attila via FaceTime. But Attila has plans of his own here at the country house, while I am away. He wants to spend his time on his projects. So, rather than force him to spend any of his precious time on computer setup, and his time is precious, I have found a less technical solution to our communication needs, while I am away.

I purchased a Skype account, which allows unlimited calling to Canadian and USA telephone numbers. This cost $30 Canadian. With this account I can call Attila on the land line in the country, from my computer, anywhere that I can find a high speed internet connection. This means Attila need not spend time setting up and configuring an account, he can answer my telephone calls by merely picking up the receiver.

We did try communicating by cell phone the last time I visited the little house in the city by myself, and went through a $100 credit before the week was out. The Skype account will see us through a whole year, for $30.

Worldly Distractions


Date: 3:00 PM EDT Tuesday 28 May 2013
Condition: Cloudy
Pressure: 101.6 kPa
Visibility: 16 km
Temperature: 18.2°C
Dewpoint: 6.4°C
Humidity: 46%
Wind: ESE 18 gust 37 km/h


“When I’m working on a problem, I never think about beauty. I think only how to solve the problem. But when I have finished, if the solution is not beautiful, I know it is wrong.”
R. Buckminster Fuller
1895 – 1983

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ava south

Not familiar with hog weed., Sounds like nasty stuff. Like poison ivy? Been wanting to ask, probably not any of my business and you can tell me so if it isn’t, but why do you have two homes? See how nosy I am? lol

I have a tub also but my son installed one of those shower hose thingys for me and I can sit and rinse my hair easily. Maybe that would help you.

Did I send you an email about getting on my notify list since I am journaling again? If you like I can add you.

Iris is gorgeous!!


Ava, if you are journaling again, can I get on your list? Bex… the addy listed here in the comments doesn’t work for me – for you.

Maggie, not sure I know what hogweed is. I shall go look it up now. You two do more work than we do in a year here… I guess that’s how to stay young…


I’ve looked up Hogweed and it seems to be some really nasty stuff! I’m wishing Attila all the best for a quick recovery without scarring.


I read up on giant hogweed, thanks to Google, and it is truly a noxious plant. I hope Attila recovers quickly. Did you come across it on your property? If so, there may be government plans to deal with it as there are here in some states. It was originally brought to the North American continent as an ornamental plant for gardens. Some people have no sense whatsoever.

The photo of that gorgeous perfect iris is going in my picture collection, if you have no objection.

And I’m in awe of your ambitious projects and the progress you’ve made so far.


Ava, how could I forget, YES please, add me to your notify list! Thank you!


LOL Bex, we are a couple of hyperactives I guess. I am always into some kind of ephemeral project, can’t stop myself, web sites, genealogy, planning, organizing. Attila can’t stop moving, got to keep him busy!


Thanks Wendy, the Hogweed is common in the village where Attila works, must have been brought in by an avid gardener. Attila is feeling much, much better now, the medication is really helping.


Sarah, the Hogweed was on the property where Attila works, he was spraying it. He is not sure how he came in contact with it, he said he was very careful. Horrible stuff!

I feel flattered that you would like to add the picture of the iris to your collection, please do.


Ava, ah yes, the two home dilemma! Here it is in a nutshell. Three years ago Attila was working for a foreman addicted to oxycontin, horrible situation, day after day. He had had a particularly rough week, which ended with a celebration in the city for our daughter Terra, who was graduating. We attended the graduation, saw the house in the newspaper on Saturday night, bought the house Sunday, with a determination to move to the city. Attila was not going to last at his job, so we thought to start again. It wasn’t as sudden as it seems, we had been talking about it for quite some time.

The house was a wreck, we planned to salvage it with sweat and hard work, and to live there. Our country house went up on the market and we were set to GO!

Then the foreman where Attila worked quit, in a fit of temper, and Attila was instantly offered the promotion to foreman. That happened just a short time after our decision to move. Attila now loves his job, and since we have applied and applied and applied for work near the city house, with no luck at all, we are stuck where we are. A job in the hand is worth two in the bush.

So here we are with two houses! Crazy. We could not sell the little house in the city, it was in such terrible condition. We have spent every spare minute bringing it back to life, and now we love it, it is so much our own.

So, we hope to retire to the city house, and we continue to apply for work in the city, but it hasn’t worked out yet. Since there is still so much basic work that remains to be done on the little house in the city, we are working along in good faith, hoping that fate will lead us where we need to go.

And so we have two houses, which was not our original intention, but what we ended up with.

I am waiting for divine enlightenment on where we go from here!!! LOL