Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Fun at the auction

Last weekend was a busy one for auctions and silent ones too. On Saturday, we spent five hours at an estate auction at the Oakhill Fire Hall. I love auctions and always find it interesting to see what people will bid. Some of the strangest things go for the strangest prices. I tend to like old crocks and bottles, enamelware and boxes. On Saturday I had my eye on an old Boston rocker that had been painted a robin's egg blue. I bid on some crocks and bottles, and some glass floats, but was outbid on everything. But I held in there for "my" rocker. Of course, it was one of the last items to come up for bidding. But I won! (and think I got a bargain too). It has a new home in our screened-in porch and it's perfect.

After the auction we headed over to Lunenburg's Wet Paint Sale. Every year, the Lunenburg Art Gallery hosts this event (formerly called Paint Sea On Site). Artists paint on site on Saturday and Sunday, and they hold a silent auction of the paintings on both days at the Lunenburg Fire Hall. Each piece of art has a "take away" price that's good until 3:30. Anything not purchased for the take away price remains for silent auction until 4:30. We went back on Sunday and I won this little gem... "Garden Chair" painted by Anne Fraser. I have looked for information about Anne on line, but I can't find a web site for her and I don't know anything about her. But I love this painting. That chair is just waiting for me to sit in.

While I was busy at the silent auction (which was packed full of locals and tourists too) John was waiting outside with the dogs. John, being John, of course got to talking to people and met one of the artists from the event. They talked for over an hour and an invitation was issued for us to drop in sometime at his home. He lives near one of our favourite beaches, which we going to today so we may just drop by and say hello to our new American friend.

Today: pick up lunch at LaHave Bakery, off to the beach, possibly rake up some seaweed to use for garden compost, a long walk on the beach, and maybe visit some new friends. Yay for life in Nova Scotia!

Friday, July 25, 2008

Story time

Time for a little story that has nothing to do with keets, or guinea hens, or learning to live in the country.

This story takes us back about 15 years or so, when my son was 5 or 6. (yes, he is 21 now...yikes!) My sister introduced Cody and me to the world of auctions. She and one of her girlfriends took us to a country auction near London, Ontario. There wasn't much there to interest a six year old boy, but Cody did spot some glass paperweights. His eyes grew wide and he was in love.There were 5 glass balls at the auction. He never asked for them. But he kept going to look at them. It was obvious to the three of us that he wanted one. And I knew I had to make my first bid at an auction.We waited. And waited. And finally they came up for bidding. But the auctioneer put all the glass balls in one lot instead of selling them seperately. There was a dealer there who bought them all for a price that I couldn't pay.

And Cody cried.

I approached the dealer to see if he'd sell me one of the balls, but he wouldn't. I was crushed because Cody was so very disappointed. My sister spent the next 10 years buying glass balls for Cody every time she found one at a garage sale. He has quite the collection, which I seemed to inherit when he left home to live in the big city of Toronto.And you know something funny? A while back we talked about this memory of mine and the reason his aunt always bought him glass balls. He doesn't even remember the auction. But every since that day, I have had a love of things made of glass.

Saturday, July 19, 2008

More scenic adventures

We had a wonderful day (again!) on Thursday. We drove part of the Lighthouse Route, from Petite Riviere west to Liverpool. Once we arrived in Liverpool, we had lunch at Woodpile Carvings & Cafe. An interesting place that serves lots of coffees throughout the day, lunch from 11 to 3, and has artwork in all shapes, sizes and formats. One of the owners is a wood carver (hence the name Woodpile Carvings & Cafe). Roast Beef paninis for lunch, with the very best chocolate peanut butter pie I have ever had! Yum, yum. yum.

Here are some of my favourite photos from the day. If you want to see a lot more photos of this trip, go to my Nova Scotia Travels & Treasures blog.
Vogler's CoveBeach Meadows BeachPort Medway Beach Meadows Beach

Friday, July 18, 2008

Nice Surprises

On Tuesday, John surprised me by whisking me off on a little adventure. Our first stop was the LaHave Bakery. The LaHave Bakery is set in a wonderful old building with tons of character. They also have great sandwiches and cookies and squares. We ordered our sandwiches to go. And we went to one of our favourite spots...Crescent Beach. It was a bright sunny (and hot) day at home, and at the bakery. But once we arrived at the beach it was cool and very, very foggy. Despite the fog (or maybe because of it?) we had a wonderful picnic. John had packed some wine and wine glasses in the car without me knowing.The sandwiches were chicken with lettuce, tomatoes, onions, and "radical rhubarb relish". Yum!
After our picnic, we walked the full length of the beach....4.5 kilometers to the end and back.
A wonderful outing!

Saturday, July 12, 2008


Wednesday: Mulligan
Friday: Cassie
This is the porcupine Mulligan messed with...pictured on the ground under a shrub.
Would someone please tell our porcupines to stay in the trees? Would someone please tell my dogs that porcupines do not make good friends? Maybe we should have listened to our 80 year old neighbour who told us to get a gun..."you want to shoot them things. You don't want them around".

Instead of sleeping peacefully in my bed, last night at midnight I was holding our 4 year old Giant Schnauzer/Poodle Cassie (muzzled and blindfolded) while John pulled out more than 15 quills from her nose. Cassie was yelping, I was crying, and John was cursing. How did you spend your Friday night?

We couldn't remove them all, so yet another trip to the vet was made to have the remaining 7 quills removed. The vets aren't complaining. Two trips in 4 days at $150 a pop.

Yep. I love country living.

Friday, July 4, 2008

Our Guinea Hen Coop

Here are the keets at 4 weeks. All 3 of them started roosting on the branch inside their crate this week. And all 3 of them escaped from the crate this week (at the same time).On Wednesday, we were working in the yard and the doors of the shed were opened. I let Mulligan and Cassie outside and it took them about 30 seconds to race around to the shed to visit the keets. Mulligan pulled off one of the cardboard sides and the keets were all squished in the far corner of the crate trying to get away from her. So, I got the dogs out of the shed and the shed doors closed. I didn't replace the cardboard on the end of the crate...I figured the keets had grown too big to get through the sides. The next day I went into the shed and all 3 keets were standing outside the crate peeping and chirping. I thought it might be difficult to get them back into the crate but it was easy. Instead of trying to catch them, I just blocked off the area and walked behind them so they all marched back into the crate. Time to get them down into the coop even though it's still 2 weeks before we can let them out into the yard.

Here is our coop in all it's glory: As I mentioned before, we used the base and the roof from a child's playhouse that the previous owners left on the property (they left the pieces there, but none of the pieces were put together). We also used leftover stain from the previous owners to paint the coop. The photo above shows one end of the coop. This door opens up to the side and will be the door I use to clean the coop, and give them food and water.This photo shows the other end of the coop, with the drop down door for the hens to use. The door turns into a ramp for them to walk on. The railings on the sides are also from the playhouse...good landing spots for the hens when they're coming back to the coop. And here's a close up of one of my favourite features...
Our 6 year old granddaughter drew a chicken on the plywood when John and G were building the coop. I outlined her drawing with marker, added the year and covered it with varnish. Below is the inside of the coop.
We drilled one inch holes all along the top of the coop to allow some air circulation when the doors are closed. We are also going to add a door for the hens on the top of the shelf. We're thinking this might stop some predators (and our own dogs!) from getting in the house using the ramp. Looking at the outside, that means there will be smaller doors on the one end of the house. 
Fingers crossed all goes well moving the keets tomorrow! The keets will stay in the coop for 2 weeks, and then we'll let them roam the yard.