Small Miracle

orange marigolds in the sun

The Marigols this morning.

What a beautiful day! It is cool, cool enough that I am wearing a long sleeve shirt. But not so cool that I feel chilly. Perfect. Another heat wave is on the way, so say the weather people. I suspect they are right, the first week of September often brings hot humid weather.

Today it doesn’t feel as if I have done much. BUT, I must remind myself that this is simply not true.

First of all, I dealt with the dead mice in the trap that I set on the back porch last night. Mice are usually caught at night. When checking the bucket trap this morning, I was surprised to find two deceased mice. It took me a while to figure out what I was going to do with them. I settled for flushing them down the toilet. The trap has been reset.

bucket and ramp mouse trap setup

This is the mouse trap on the back porch. Fancy it ain’t! The water is roof runoff, the ramp is a piece of scrap wood from the garage roof project, set from the step to the bucket. The peanut butter is about all I had to invest in this very effective mouse trap. NOTE: no mice in this picture of the trap!

More traps need to be set for tonight, in the garden shed and in the garage. This is the time of year the mice are coming into buildings to setup their winter homes, and I intend to stop as many of them as I can from taking up residence at Mist Cottage.

The barriers we setup around the fenced in yard have been effective for keeping out the rabbits. The squirrels, birds, mice, and cats remain undeterred. This morning I watched the neighbours cat prowling around the fenced in yard, in search of mice. Sometimes he catches a mouse, as he did this last week in our compost pile. Today he had no such luck. He is a fat cat, well fed and loved by his people, so he needn’t catch anything, he is never really hungry. To date he hasn’t caught any birds. I would disapprove of the recreational hunting of our birds.

Another little project that kept me busy this morning was installing a contraption to catch drips under the bathtub drain. It leaks occasionally, and Attila’s adjustments haven’t succeeded in solving the issue. The thing is, that is where my canning supplies reside, right under the bathtub drain, and the leak creates quite a mess. So I decided I wanted some sort of catchment system, to prevent the leaks from reaching my canning equipment.

To that end I purchased a lightweight plastic serving tray from the Dollar Store, and some inexpensive bungee cords. The bungee cords gave off a horrid and overpowering odour when I opened the package, and so have been hanging outside on the clothesline for four or five days. They still smell a little, but nothing like their original stench. The project had to wait for them.

Now, here is where the true enjoyment of the new garage roof comes into play at Mist Cottage. I found old cup hooks for part of the job, but I didn’t have enough and needed nails for my project. Attila has his nails stored in clear plastic peanut butter jars (cleaned of course, labels removed). To find nails of the size I wanted, it was a simple as perusing the shelves along the back wall of the garage, where all the nails are on display. It took only seconds to spy the nails I wanted to use, easily grab the jar, unscrew the lid, take what I needed, put the lid back on, and the return the jar to its place on the shelf. It’s a miracle!! Not once in the last 25 years have I been able to easily find a nail when I needed one. A miracle I say!

I have my own little toolbox underneath the cabinet in the kitchen, so my hammer is exactly where I left it. My list was complete, hammer and nails, plastic tray and bungee cords. The wood on the floor joists, where I wanted to hammer in the nails to attach the ends of the bungee cords, was really, really hard. I dropped and lost one nail down behind the shelving, as I struggle above my head to hammer it in. But it didn’t take long to go out to the garage to replace it, voila! It was a little disturbing that old and dusty debris fell on me every time the hammer hit the nail. I persevered. And eventually the job was done. Now the tray will catch any intermittent drips, and it can easily be taken down and cleaned, if that is ever needed. The drips are bad enough to cause damage to cardboard over time, but not so bad that they will fill the tray to its brim. The water will evaporate away between baths and showers.

aa plastic tray suspended from the floor joists under the bathtub

This is the drip tray that will catch any of the small but annoying leaks from the bathtub drain. Now I can store my cardboard boxes of mason jars and canning equipment without risk of water damage!

So, that is how I spent most of my day. Of course, I did enjoy sitting in my easy chair, with the windows wide open all day long, writing this entry, crocheting, and contemplating life, the universe, and everything.

And tonight, another lovely Spicy Chicken with Rice and Mixed Vegetable for dinner. I think I will make this with fresh Scarlet Runner Beans from the garden, we have all winter to eat frozen vegetables.



Date: 2:00 PM EDT Thursday 30 August 2018
Condition: Mostly Cloudy
Pressure: 102.3 kPa
Tendency: Rising
Temperature: 19.0°C
Dew point: 12.7°C
Humidity: 67%
Wind: NNE 12 gust 27 km/h
Visibility: 24 km


“You are going to let the fear of poverty govern your life and your reward will be that you will eat, but you will not live.”
George Bernard Shaw
1856 – 1950

It seems to me this is true of only of those with the means to avoid poverty. No one chooses it. (Well there are a few monks etc. but they aren’t facing starvation.)

Roof Vent

We set the mouse traps with peanut butter last night, placing one of them in the kitchen sink. Sure enough, when we got up this morning there was a dead mouse in the trap. I think we may have more mice, so the traps are going out again and again until weeks go by without catching any mice.

It was like summer here at Mist Cottage today! Attila spent the day removing the old roof vent on Iris the trailer, and installing a new one. It was a long, painstaking procedure, as each step needed to be done very carefully to ensure a good seal. While Attila worked on Iris, I raked pine cones from the front yard. The pine tree in our front yard is shedding a lot of pine cones this year, so it was a big job.

It was nice to be out of doors for the day. One of the things I enjoy about our little neighbourhood here at Mist Cottage is chatting with the neighbours. I stopped my raking twice to chat with friendly neighbours, learning more about their lives and interests.

It was disappointing to hear our neighbour two doors down, a retired gentleman who is very fussy about his yard, dressing down the young father who lives next door to us. The young couple next door have their own way of looking at things, and they are often a bit messy about the yard. They do make some effort, the husband was out raking his back yard yesterday. But that was not good enough the young man’s other neighbour. We could hear the older man loudly criticizing the young man, who responded that he had done yard work yesterday. The fact that the young man offered a relatively polite response speaks well of his character; he owed the older man no response at all. It was sad to hear such silliness going on. Attila and I made a point of being friendly with the young couple a few hours later, when they were getting their sons into the car to go out somewhere.

We also managed to hang out a large load of laundry this morning, which dried completely by early evening. It makes for a lot less clutter in a small house when the drying lines are outside instead of inside.

And… we had the windows open for the first time this spring!

Attila’s project, removing the old roof vent. A big hole was left when the roof vent came out, and Attila took advantage of that. He stood on a stool and stood up through the hole in the roof to remove the old butyl tape and caulking, and clean the area.
Roof vent opening
The end result, a new roof vent for Iris. Now she can be left without the tarp draped over her to protect her from the rain. It will be much easier for me to get in and out of her now, to continue my cleaning project.
Roof vent installed
Our Hoya is in bloom. The Hoya does not bloom often. Although I find the flowers quite beautiful, I do not care for the strong scent.
Hoya bloom
The Lungwort is in bloom in the front garden at Mist Cottage. I stop to look at it frequently when I am outside, blooming flowers are such a welcome sight.
At the Rideau Camp on Saturday I found these blooms in the forest, Mayflowers. My Mom used to send us out into the bush in the spring, to search for the first Mayflowers. It was always a time of great excitement.

Worldly Distractions


16°C (our thermometer read 22C)
Date: 5:00 PM EDT Sunday 17 April 2016
Condition: Partly Cloudy
Pressure: 102.8 kPa
Tendency: falling
Visibility: 24 km
Temperature: 16.4°C
Dewpoint: 2.5°C
Humidity: 39%
Wind: S 20 km/h


“If you don’t know where you are going, any road will take you there.”
Lewis Carroll
1832 – 1898