May 2011

Smiths Falls, Ontario, Canada

Stopped And Smelled The Lilacs

Click here for larger view After being in Ottawa a week ago for medical and financial appointments, today we again had to return there, this time for Sandra to get a bone density scan, but the day was so beautiful we left for the city hours early to take some spring flower photos along the way.
    Our first stop was Lilac Lane (photo on the right) in Franktown, the self-proclaimed Lilac Capital of Ontario. I have wanted to see the lilacs in bloom there for years, but for one reason or another (uncooperative weather, remembered too late, just didn't think about it) we never made it. This year however, I was determined to see them, so we put it on the calendar and today we finally saw Franktown's lilacs in bloom and I must say that as far as I'm concerned the village deserves the title of Lilac Capital. I've never seen so many lilacs in one place and the aroma from there being so many of them was unbelievable. I could have stayed there for hours just breathing it in.
    However, we had other things to do, so we were too soon off to Ottawa where we visited the Ornamental Gardens, one of my favorite places there, which had quite a few flowers in bloom, although still too early for many of them.
    After seeing the gardens we drove across the road and visited the Fletcher Wildlife Garden where a month ago I had seen a cardinal frequenting their bird feeder. Sadly though, in the interim they had removed the feeder (I assume they must only have it out during the winter) so there were far fewer birds there this time, but I did manage to get a half decent shot of an American Goldfinch, seen here.
    Then it was drop Sandra off for her bone scan and while she was there I returned to the Ornamental Gardens until she called to tell me she was done and then it was the hour-long drive back home with enough photos shot it will take weeks to process them all.

May Flowers

Click here for larger view Despite not posting anything on this page for two weeks, it was a fairly eventful time around here.
    For instance, yesterday at midday, we had our annual physicals at the doctor's office in Ottawa. The doctor found no surprises, but we have a battery of the usual blood tests to be done. Hopefully, there will still be no surprises after those.
    And since we arrived early in the city, we killed some time before seeing the doctor by walking around Andrew Haydon Park, where we photographed some gulls and geese, like here and here, and the remainder of the time was spent walking along the trail at Mud Lake (a conservation area in the city itself), where we saw some small birds, but except for a Scarlet Tanager that Sandra saw (which was gone from sight by the time I caught up with her) and some turtles sunning out on logs in the water, there wasn't much else to be seen there.
    After the doctor and a bite of lunch at a Wendy's, we dropped by this year's edition of Ottawa's annual tulip festival to see the tulip beds in Commissioners Park. As you can see in the photo above, it was still a bit early for a great many of the tulips, although there were quite a number of them in bloom and even one bed that was already wilting. The thing that impressed us most though was the crowd of people there on a Thursday afternoon. We were lucky to find parking, pulling into a spot that someone had just vacated and that spot was immediately taken when we left. A happening place. We figured it was so crowded because yesterday was the last of a series of three or four absolutely beautiful spring days before the weather tanks again, with overcast and rain predicted for the foreseeable future (two weeks) and we guessed everyone wanted to take advantage of seeing the tulips in sunlight while we still had some. Of course, the forecasters can't accurately predict the weather one day in advance, so it remains to be seen how the next two weeks actually turn out.
Click here for larger view    Monday evening, we had to move everything out of the living room that we were able to move ourselves, the couch and TV/fireplace credenza being too heavy. The move was in preparation for the new living room carpet scheduled to be installed first thing Tuesday morning, which it was, the installers arriving bright and early. You can see the old carpet here. It was actually darker than it looks in that photo and because of that, every speck and crumb showed up on it. So we replaced it with a lighter color, as can be seen above, and due to its color and texture the specks don't show up at all.
    Saturday, we visited a local garden center where we bought three small spirea shrubs to fill the hole in our landscaping created when the new porch was built last year and the shrub that had been there had to be removed to make room for the larger porch. We planted the new shrubs as soon as we got home and they can be seen here.
    Then last Thursday, we attended a workshop held by the chiropractor Sandra has been seeing here in town. The workshop was interesting and the chiropractor seems quite knowledgeable, so I expect I'll be seeing him soon myself for a long overdue adjustment.
    And of course, each Saturday and Monday morning found us attending our two hour Tai Chi class. Lots of moves to learn. Good for an old brain, as well as good for an old body.


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Updated Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Copyright © 2011 by Gordon L Wolford .
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Didya Know?

John Wayne acted in 138
films before winning an
Oscar for True Grit (1969).

Henry Fonda appeared in
movies for 41 years before
winning an Oscar for
On Golden Pond in 1981.

A Spot O' Humor

When she saw her first
strands of grey she
thought she would dye.

Toothache: the pain that
drives you to extraction.

Parting Thot

There is nothing worse
than a sharp image of
a fuzzy concept.

– Ansel Adams

Cast of Characters

For those reading this page who might
not be familiar with the people in
my life, these are who I often refer to
without noting who they are
(in alphabetical order)...

Becky - Nick's wife
Betty - Sandra's older sister
Caden - Grandson
Carol - my younger sister
Danica - Margie's daughter
Eric - Son-in-law
Faith - Granddaughter
Garth - Betty's husband
Grace - Granddaughter
Ian - my son
Iris - Granddaughter
Jack - Great-nephew
John - Margie's husband
Lily - Granddaughter
Luke - Grandson
Margie - Sandra's younger sister
Michelle - my daughter
Miss Pinky - our GPS navigator
Nick - Margie's son
Oren - Grandson
Rick - Carol's husband
Sandra - my most wonderful wife*
Tracy - Daughter-in-law
Violet - Granddaughter

*(a.k.a. 'Grammy' to some)