Religion & spiritually

Religion? Spiritually? These words have been popping up in my life for years now. What’s it all about? Do I need it in my life? How would I do that? *crickets churping*

As a child I was i introduced to church but it wasn’t forced upon me. We would go and I’d go to Sunday school. This continued until I started sports on the weekends at age 6.

I didn’t reconsider having religion in my life again until I was going away to a Catholic boarding school in grade 12. I wasn’t in this school for the church, let me tell you 😬

At this point I was 18 years of age and was surrounded by overly religious people. Quite frankly I thought it was over the top and strange. I prayed, I ate the cracker and juice, confessed a sin or two but it MEANT nothing to me. It wasn’t real. I faked it like any bad 18 year old would. 

Now that I’m a bit more mature(if I do say so myself 😇) I am at a point where I am ready for religion to be part of my life. My partner is Christian and has never pressed me to become Christian as well, however for the past year I’ve been attending church regularly and I’ve come to a place where I’ll pray…a real prayer. 

It’s really quite amazing. I’m proud of myself and interested and excited for this personal growth of mine. My partner is the only person my age that I know of who is openly religious and that makes me a bit hesitant to show my religion publically. So much to learn and so much growth that will happen. 

I wonder about other people…have you gone through a similar journey? Everyone must have their own stories and beliefs. I really want to have an open mind about how my beliefs are changing and I want to hear from YOU! ❤


A snowy December 

Can anyone guess what mountain this is?

It’s December! Where I am in the world isn’t a wintery place- usually it rains all winter long. However, this December is different! As I sit in bed and write this post, it’s snowing outside ❄ my plan for today is to stay home ALL day, reading and eventually making chilli. I haven’t done much reading these days what with school(textbooks have taken over) but I’m currently reading Primates of Park Avenue by Wednesday Martin. And this book is BEAUTIFUL. 😚 read about it below!📚

“After marrying a man from the Upper East Side and moving to the neighborhood, Wednesday Martin struggled to fit in. Drawing on her background in anthropology and primatology, she tried looking at her new world through that lens, and suddenly things fell into place. She understood the other mothers’ snobbiness at school drop-off when she compared them to olive baboons. Her obsessional quest for a Hermes Birkin handbag made sense when she realized other females wielded them to establish dominance in their troop. And so she analyzed tribal migration patterns, display rituals, physical adornment, mutilation, mating practices, extra-pair copulation, and more. Her conclusions are smart, thought-provoking and hilariously unexpected” -Goodreads

So? What do you think? Is this a book you’d read? Let me know what YOU are reading, eating or doing. Add me on Goodreads too! Happy holidays my blog friends 🎄 

Winter garden failures

Oh boo! This winter I was looking forward to growing a few vegetables including carrots, spinach, radishes and beets. In September I planted seeds, which have germinated but just won’t grow any larger! They are tiny little sprouts and haven’t changed size in months. The seed packages say they grow in winter, and it’s only 10 degrees C° – 15 C° so I don’t understand what’s going on! After my wonderful summer of growing I put some nutrients back into the soil. Winter gardeners, I’m looking to you for some help! Or anyone who has any clue what I can do. My poor seedlets just won’t grow! I live on the West Coast of Canada if anyone is nearby has knows the climate better than I do. I’m loving everyone’s gardens right now, it’s so fun to see what you’re growing. For those book lovers that follow me, I’m in the midst of aceing all my classes so I haven’t been reading many books that aren’t textbooks. The summer should be better for that sort of thing

Anyway, happy Saturday friends:) and let me know ANY winter gardening tips! Happy reading and happy growing ❤🌱

Garden Update – September 

Oh blogging friends, I’ve missed you. I’ve been neglectful to my blog but am still here! September has been a very busy month with starting a new program in university among other things.

My garden has been quite pitiful this month I’m afraid. There were many tomatoes in the early month until late BLIGHT(I believe) hit and essentially killed all 7 plants. I was devastated. Here are some photos so you can see what it looked like. It sort of seems like the tomatoes are rotting from the inside out.

Has anyone seen this?

I did however get hundreds of tomatoes, I just felt awful for all the ones that never got to ripen. Food waste is my equivalent to nails on a chalkboard – I just can’t handle it. I ended up ripping out all 7 plants and attempting to save any green fruits. With the non blighted tomatoes I decided to use my dehydrator again and make sundried tomatoes. It was fun to experiment with the different varieties of tomatoes.

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In other news, that garden skunk I mentioned turns out to be a family of very busy, very enthusiastic squirrels. I used to enjoy watching squirrels run around and frolic…now I want to spray them with my hose’s jet setting. I made some sort of homemade squirrel deterrent using vinegar chopped garlic and black pepper…it didn’t work unfortunately.

I have just planted some winter seeds including: spinach, carrots, beets and bokchoy. Here’s hoping squirrel doesn’t decide to dig them up and have a nibble.

Does ANYONE know how to avoid this horrible blight? Or is it just part of gardening? I should probably move on and get over it 🍅And has anyone had a squirrel digging up their garden? What has worked for you? I’m excited to hear some tips and certainly excited to hear all about your fall and winter gardens!!🌱🌱

Garden Update – July

Somehow it’s already July! For those fellow Canadians out there, Happy Canada Day! For the rest of you…I hope you’re having a great day. The garden has really grown in the past few weeks, I thought I’d share some photos. I would also really love some advice from you, I’m learning but have had some issues…

The peas are fantastic; about 8 feet tall and producing over a handful every day. I planted both snow peas and snap peas, both of which are doing well.

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Snap peas growing rapidly!

I planted about 10 onion bulbs…most of them got rather moldy and limp so I pulled them. I have 3 remaining. This is my largest. I have high hopes but honestly I don’t think it’s doing too well. Have you grown onions? Any tips?

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Next are the 8 tomato plants which have taken off. As you can see they were quite small when I planted them. 7 of my tomatoes are doing well, still have yet to produce a tomato…soon! Grow babies, grow!

1 of the stems has an issue…so tomato planting friends I need some help!!! What has happened to my delightful tomato plant? It looks like something has eaten it out…suggestions?

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The carrots are HUGE, the stems at least. I dug down to see how big the actual vegetable is and it’s about an inch wide(probably less), so they’re tiny still. I’m getting impatient with those carrots! I have a feeling carrots are one of those veggies that’s just not worth growing – a lot of waiting and not a ton of yield. Thoughts on that?

I’ve just planted some more bokchoy since the last batch was so successful and yielded SO many luscious leaves for us to gobble up. We ate bokchoy at every meal for weeks. I also planted a few beet seeds just to see what happens.

I’ve never planted beets, have you had success? How are your vegetables coming along? Have you ever had success/failures with any of these plants? What should I grow next? Happy growing, garden friends!

PS enjoy my calendula plant that FINALLY grew a flower. Bumble bumble bumble, come to my garden, bees!

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Backpacking and Books!

OK I have one question for anyone who enjoys hiking or backpacking…why? Why do we carry 40lbs on our backs to the top of a mountain? Then why do we proceed to pitch a tent in 3 feet of snow and eat freeze dried meals that make you constipated for days on end??

Well friends, I thought I’d try to solve the mystery. This past weekend my partner took me on an overnight trip to Elfin Lakes, which is in British Columbia’s mountains (Canada).

Boy was it…snowy. Since it’s almost July I assumed the trails would be snow free and glistening a nice shade of green. Wrong! A 21km trek to this view…OK it was worth it.

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It’s quite difficult, I got a nasty sunburn from the sun reflecting off the snow, my feet bled and I probably consumed half my weight in freeze dried meals but the view was pretty spectacular wouldn’t you say?

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Best part? Reading my book at the top! 📚📚 I’m currently reading Blonde Hair, Blue Eyes by Karin Slaughter. Have you read this one?

How did you like it? What are you reading? Have you ever hiked? 🌲 I’m planning on reviewing a few books in the coming days so stayed tuned for that!

A meal from the garden

Sounds perfect, doesn’t it? Today I made spot prawns with bokchoy and peas from my garden. OK the prawns were from the ocean but you know, the vegetable part was grown by me;)

A few of you have asked me how to use bokchoy (aka: pac choi) so I’m here to tell you!

In this case my bokchoy bolted so I haven’t been eating the stem as its very fibreous, better off for a nice animal with large teeth. Instead I’ve been peeling the leaves off and frying them.

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It’s a lot like spinach in that it shrinks down and goes a bit limp when you heat it. I added some water and soy sauce and fried them up for about 5 minutes. I added my lovely snow peas in at the end.

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This is what the end result looked like!

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I’m generally NOT the type of person to take photos of my food but I don’t buy expensive seafood everyday, and this was my first pea harvest…so I had to!

Are your vegetables harvesting? What’s your favorite meal to cook? What do you make with the food from your garden? Happy eating and growing, blogger friends 😄🌱🍴

Garden update!

It’s time for a garden update! I was away for the weekend and came home to quite the treat…radishes!!! These radishes are the first harvest of the year, besides the onion some creature dug up.

I’ve also taken photos of my other veggies to show you all how they’re coming along.

First, the tomatoes are about the same size, likely due to lack of heat…boo, hopefully they pick up soon. Come to us, sunshine! 🍅🍅
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Below you can see our onions are very floppy…the green stems resemble fainting goats. Does anyone know if this is a normal thing for growing onions to do?

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Floppy yellow onions

The bokchoy is tall, but thin. I assume the stems are on the cusp of bulking up. Here’s hoping! Unfortunately as you can see something is eating the bokchoy leaves (damn you creatures, damn you!). There’s many wood bugs roaming around…perhaps they are the culprits?
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Carrots, oh yes carrots! They’re doing well, looking more like carrots everyday. They are about 4 inches tall. All I want is one purple carrot ☺
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Not pictured are my beautiful and lively pea plants which are about 5 feet tall.

How is your garden coming along? Have you harvested anything in the last week? I am so excited to hear about your garden adventures and maybe learn something from you as well! I can’t explain the feeling of excitement when these radishes came out of the ground; so rewarding! 🌱🌱

Tomato Time!

Tomatoes! 🍅 One of the main reasons I wanted to start a garden this year. Delicious little gems that often grow bountiful yields. My mom planted three plants last year and got literally thousands of little cherry tomatoes…I was inspired.

This year I’ve chosen 5 varieties of tomatoes. Each one is a test, as I don’t have a clue what will do well in my garden.

1) Early Cascade
2) Cherry Yellow Pear
3) Red Grape
4) Money Maker(larger)
5) Sweet Million

My gardener friend gave me 2 mystery tomato plants which will no doubt produce some fruits as well. I will be spacing my planting dates apart so they don’t start producing tomatoes all at once. Thus far I’ve planted my Early Cascade and 1 mystery plant. Later this week I’ll plant the rest. I have been cutting off the lower stems and burying 2/3 of the plant, this is supposed to help the plant grow stronger.

Have you planted any of these tomato plants? Did you have success? Happy growing 🍅🌱

The first seeds of the year

It’s that time of year! My spring/summer seeds have gone into the soil about 3 weeks ago and by now have all germinated and are visibly growing. In my last post I explained that I’ve always wanted to start my own vegetable garden, and this year I’m fortunate to be able to do it!

We started by building a 12ft by 4ft raised bed (photo below), which is 8 inches deep. Next I asked my friend for some of his farms aged horse manure which should produce a good crop

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On April 17th I planted the following:
Radishes, bokchoy (aka pac choi), snow peas, snap peas, yellow onions and a variety of carrots.

Three weeks later, this is what they looked like!

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The radishes should be ready to harvest in the next 1-2 weeks, bokchoy in the next 2-3 weeks. Carrots take much longer to grow, along with onions and peas. However the pea plants have doubled in size already!

The one possible issue has been the dreaded cabbage white butterfly. I’ve seen what I think is that beast landing on my bokchoy, hopefully not laying eggs anywhere near my plants. I’ve done some reading and apparently their larvae love nibbling on leaves. No, no! Be gone! To attract happier less beast like creatures I’ve planted some flower seeds. Who knows when they’ll transform into flowers though. Come to me, bees!

Next to be planted is TOMATOES! 🍅 I’m extra excited for tomatoes because they’re my favorite veggie…fruit(?!). I’ve bought several different types of tomato plants, so tune in later this week for a tomato post. Cheers, friends! Any tips or questions are more than welcome 🍷