Farmer Markets are still in their full glory right now in Southern Ontario. Many of them will be moving indoors in the coming weeks, so be sure ask your favourite farmers where you can find them. We have stopped at the Coburg farmers market several times over the summer. Usually we go to the market in Belleville but decided to try some new experiences. So happy we did. Look at this bounty from @wicklowway_elaina that we took home. It's all organic and comes with an in-person teaching lesson on how to cook or enjoy it. We tried the bitter lettuce in the back row. We charred it and drizzled olive oil, balsamic vinegar salt and pepper. I liked it but my niece was a bit shocked on how bitter it was. We all agreed we should have started with the bitter lettuce instead of playing with shishito peppers where one out of ten is super hot. We were told to start with the bitter first but couldn't resist trying the peppers to see who got the hot ones. I got more than my share of the hot ones. We love trying new food and having our local farmers share their passion with us. There is still time to get to know your farmers and the food they grow for you. Next weekend is often the last outdoor market here in Southern Ontario so google and see if there is one you can attend as the veggies and apples are abundant and super fresh. Here's to our farmers and counrty roads!!!
Happy Thanksgiving weekend to all my Canadian friends. Take a few moments this weekend to give thanks. I am very grateful for all of you for all the kindness and generosity that you share. Wishing you all a fabulous weekend.
Hello! Thought I'd introduce myself to new followers and reacquaint myself with all my lovely long-term friends here on the gram. I'm Jo-Ann Blondin. Yes, I spell my name with a dash and no e. And yes, Blondin means the blonde one in French so expect to see blonde in my hair despite its real colour. Things you should know: 🌲I love the outdoors. 🌻I am crazy about gardening. 🖥I've been publishing a monthly tour of my city garden on YouTube since 2017. 🛶I appreciate flat water canoeing and kayaking for the peaceful, calming outcomes on my well being 🏕I like to backcountry camp and car camp. The sleeping is not great but the experience is worth it. 🌍I love to travel and see new places. It can be close by or over seas. A new view helps you appreciate your existing views or how to change them up a wee bit. 🥣I enjoy cooking and baking. And eating what I make. And taking photos of it. And yes, you may need to wait just a bit so I capture the photo but most often we just eat. 🤗I am constantly taking photos. It's how I improve my photography and document my life. 🏠I am a do it yourselfer. I design, renovate, paint and install tiles and floors. 👫I value family and friends. Laughing with those you love is good for the soul. 😍I believe kindness and generosity make a big difference in how we show up in the world. 🌳I care about the environment and make an effort to reduce my footprint as well as plant gardens to offset my impact. Now that you know a bit about me, is there anything that surprised you? And please share a bit about you. Photo taken at @dahliamayflowerfarm during Quinte Open Doors by a kind stranger. I purchased the flowers and brought my own vintage cooler for them...cause that's what I do!
Happy first day of Autumn 2019. 🍁🌳🌻 What a beautiful weekend and incredible day today. As this season begins, it's a great day to reflect, dream, plan goals, and create adventures. Reach out to friends and family during this season. For some people, the end of summer is hard. Stay connected with each other. Continue to lift each other up. And shine bright as you enjoy the fall colour show. I'd love your ideas for a fall colour roadtrip....within 3 hours of Toronto. Any special places you would recommend? The colours have started in Eastern Ontario and Prince Edward County. If you head out to PEC, be sure to do a side trip to @dahliamayflowerfarm to get some fresh flowers for yourself or a friend. Here's to embracing Fall, taking the time to get out in nature, lifting each other up and planning your next adventure.
Last week it was 32°C after my pilates class so you know what that called for...ice cream! Many of you know that I've been gluten and cow dairy free for 7 years. But that doesn't mean I don't get to enjoy a good ice cream cone. I topped a gluten free sugar cone with coconut ice cream by @coconutbliss. If you ask me, it's worth every penny. It's so good, I served it at my son and daughter in law's rehearsal party as THE dessert (on sugar cones of course) Why would I do that? Well, my kids are dairy intolerant and we love this ice cream. We choose to make sure everyone is included at the table. We all get to enjoy each meal and the dessert. Even at their wedding, the bride and groom ordered cupcakes from @bunner for the vegan, glutenfree guests who couldn't enjoy the amazing pies from @ledelicepastryshop. When you make a choice to include everyone, it takes more effort, but there is so much more community and love at the table. I'm grateful to all of you who have hosted me and make a big effort to create amazing meals that I and others can eat with you.
I heard the chainsaws and decided to look out the window. I watched the 50 year old spruce and 50 year old pine drop. I also saw the 50 year old oak drop and the maple. All I could do was say thank you to them. Change is not always easy. Especially when you're not in control of the change. Give thanks. Find the positive messages. Move forward. Listening to my own guidance. Thank you to all of you for your compassion over these trees. Jo To see the difference a day makes...look at the previous image in my feed that I took yesterday.
Cue the chainsaws.....See those beautiful tall spruce trees in this photo? They are filled with birds and in the spring and fall, a stunning hawk perches on the tallest branches looking for food. Well enjoy them. They are about to be cut down. In fact, the property behind me will be cutting down over five 50 year old trees to build a bigger home. I seriously cried when I saw the amount of trees destined to be cut down. I called the city. The homeowner has the right to cut down trees on their property to allow for a new building (with a permit). In fact, what I learned is that trees are under a Provincal act so the city can't do much, expect make sure the city trees aren't cut or damaged. Why do we not respect the urban environment? Why do we pave over fields and then cause flooding when the water no longer has places to be absorbed. Why do people cry about the Amazon burning when here in Canada we cut down the trees to make more room for development? For my part, I'm planting trees, shrubs, flowers for pollinators, perennials and making a place where toads, bees and birds can thrive. This year we have seen an abundance of butterflies. But when I learn that we don't protect our urban environment, it makes me want to scream and shout. We MUST all be part of the solution for the global climate crisis. We need to look in our own backyards to create green spaces. We are the past, present and future. We can each make a difference.
Hello friends. Been getting some flack for only posting to my stories so I thought I'd get back to sharing here in my feed too. Honestly, I feel less pressure for perfection using stories plus I like adding words to the images so you know what you're seeing. Today, I thought I'd show you an update on the garden at Riverbend. Last October we ripped out the old gardens and made a simpler country garden. We used hostas and @provenwinners Little Limelight Hydrangea. If you love hydrangea as much as I do, but are also limited to the amount of water you have, this variety is amazing. The hydrangea are filling in as expected and look so beautiful. This weekend they started to change colour into their pinky hues. The hostas are all thriving as well. I also added in some urns that I water once a week and have even stretched it to 2.5 weeks. I'll share the plant combo in another post. In the series of images there is a photo of some echinacea that grow and self seed on the property. They looked gorgeous this weekend. At Riverbend, it's about relaxing and taking in the views. This garden is now part of the structure that makes it look so peaceful. Enjoy.
Apples are ready. Been a huge year for them. We don't spray them, so there are a few bugs, but if you bite into a clean spot, the taste is amazing. Tart and sweet. One day we'll master the art of apple growing. This year, my hubby got the trimming right, the weather for a long blossom season was good, we had lots of pollinators in the yard to make apples, the right amount of rain happened for a good size and the crop was abundant. Too bad about the worms. Happy to hear your ideas for organic apples without the extra friends who come with them. The biggest question for you is, would you use these apples?
Here's the garden after I've done some @provenwinners Vista Supertunia petunia trimming. You can see how lush it was in the July 2019 garden tour video that I posted yesterday to YouTube. Link is first up in my bio links. I'm feeling so blessed to have so many comments and subscribers to my YouTube channel. If you want to see the garden each month, hit the subscribe button over on YouTube. And if there is a topic you want me to cover, let me know. I'm working on some 'how to' videos for the Succulent arrangements I do and a zen garden arrangement. More to come.