Friday, June 17, 2011


I've known since I was a kid that June's flower and birthstone are Rose and pearl. Last June, the rose part became exceptionally clear to me. Roses were blooming everywhere. And now 'tis June again and roses are out in full bloom once more. As this month has flown by I'm realizing more and more that I really enjoy June;  the weather, the flowers, the long days, the summery attitude. And while Summer has yet to actually and officially begin there is certainly a summery smell in the air. The leaves are out in full and it's almost hard to believe that once only a couple months before they were barren of leaves and some trees still had yet to bud. The sun, when it's not blocked by storm clouds, gets blazing hot and the nights are absolutely delicious. I love June!

Well, I heard once that you can learn a lot of things from the flowers, yes, especially in the month of June....

So! A couple days ago, I went out with my handy little camera and proceeded to snap photos of all the flowers I found as I strolled through various and sundry neighbourhoods in our area. Several of them just happen to be roses :) Perhaps we can learn something together from looking at these lovely Fleurs de Juin. 

White Ragosa Rose  (with a small bee)
 Bugs like flowers too!
Daisy and butterfly

Dragonfly on trumpet flower of sorts

Can't you just imagine these roses singing?

Red Clover

Pink Lovelies (?)
 If you can readily identify the flowers that have question marks in their captions,  Please impart your knowledge to me. :)
Purple stalk flowers (?)


Purple Plume (?) or maybe a purple pom-pom

Pink with yellow center (?)

Yellow Roses

More Pinks (?)

The last of the Lilacs

Pink Ragosa

Also of interest, here is a small list of things John and I plan to do this summer:
-Learn French
-Go to the beach and practice surfing frequently (Well, John will surf. It's a skill he's just learning. I think I'll stay on the beach or just swim)
-Make and eat lots of peppermint icecream
-Make and drink lots of sun tea
-Old Songs Festival
-Design and sew Adventure Trousers (Preferably before going to Old Songs)
-Finish reading The Count of Monte Cristo
-Go blueberry picking
-Make wine from said blueberries
-Make beer from said blueberries
-Pick lots of other various and sundry found berries
-Make wine from those berries too, possibly (as well as all sorts of other yummy things, like muffins and icecream)

Hurrah! I love summer!

Friday, June 10, 2011

A good trip to the Florida Keys

Well! I'm back as of Wednesday from my trip to to the Keys. It was lovely. I saw pretty much my entire family excepting one sister and for a family as large as ours, that's pretty good. (I have 6 sisters and two brothers.)

Palm Frond
John and I had a really good time. The big part of the trip was the Annual Swim Around Key West, which was really the main reason to take the trip at this time of year (because, seriously, who goes to Florida in the summer?) My dad is the head honcho for that event which is fitting since he's done the course the most of anyone in the world (I can only assume.) Unless someone else out there has swam around the island of Key West more than 52 times? Haha. Well, I kayaked for him the whole way around as his support boat and let me tell you....It was tough. I've kayaked this course many times, I'm thinking at least 20 times. This time was one of the hardest. The wind was strong and the waves were rough. Half the time I had to kayak backwards to keep from blowing away from my swimmer and the other half the time I was struggling to keep up with him.

I know a lot of the other kayakers had a hard time too and I'm sure it was tough for the swimmers as well. The outcome, all in all, was very good, though; 71 of the 73 solo swimmers who started the race that morning finished it. If you're interested in more details or just want to read more about crazy people who pay to swim 12.5 miles in choppy waters the website is here Swim Around Key West.

Ocean View from US1
The rest of the trip was tea parties and poetry contests about our silly pet cat The Jette. I'm proud to say I came in second place in that acclaimed and celebrated contest. We took walks and swam in my family's canal and took naps on the deck in the bright hot sun. My only regret is that I took very few photos. The trip felt like a bit of a whirlwind and I was too busy enjoying every moment to even think about picture taking, even though I pretty much had my camera with me all the time. So enjoy these few photographs for now and maybe next time I get a chance to visit the Florida Keys I'll actually take some pictures of my family and their beautiful surroundings!

Driving down from Miami
Sister, Julie

Sunset Clouds
Seven Mile Bridge

Big Pine Key has Key Deer
Pictures of people taking pictures

My sister and  her husband's purple house

And their colourful neighbourhood
The Swim Around Key West!
Me (in the bandana) Georgia, my sister (in the center) and my Dad (the guy with the white stuff) get ready for the Swim

Me in my kayaking gear
Julie looks cooler than me
My dad all zinc-ed and ready to go

My brother, Billy
My nephew Atticus

I'm in the blue kayak

What's a trip to the Keys without some key lime pie?

My sister Jane is a giant (Actually, the door was just really small...)

Some of my sister's pretty decor
Buoys and Seahorse




Island off the coast
Atticus and Jane play near the tiny door
The trip was great, but it's good to be home. A New England summer will beat a Florida summer any day, and I have a feeling that this summer is holding great adventures for me....How about you? Any big summer plans?

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Steampunk vest coat refashion

All right, one more post before the big Trip to the Keys. I meant to post this weeks ago but didn't get a chance to because of how busy I've been getting everything ready for going to Florida. Now, however, everything is packed and I am dressed and ready to go and now we just wait until it's time to actually get in the car and go! What a  nice feeling.

So, the matter of the vest coat. At least, I think that's what you would call this garment. It's like a coat but without sleeves, OR it's like a vest but really ultra long...Call it what you will, I found it at the thrift store for $2 and loved it.
Unfortunately, it wasn't my style. I could never wear this anywhere and feel confident in it, even if it did look good on me. So I decided it was refashion time. I needed to give to flair to this business-woman style coat thing.

 Thankfully, a little ribbon can go a long way for giving an item some flair....

And so can a bustle.  Yes. A bustle!

*hearts are floating around my head right now*  Now it's steampunk and I love it. And you better bet your buns that I wore this thing in public and will continue to do so whenever I can get away with it.

The first time I wore it was to a bell choir concert our friend was in. I paired it up with the blue shirt above, an a-line black skirt and some purple, blue and grey striped knee-high stockings. I felt awesome and I received a generous compliment from a girl who turned out to be a fellow steampunker. It gratifying to say the least. I've been wanting to sew a bustle onto one or two of my garments for a year or so now and I'm insanely pleased that I've finally done it. And it looks quite good, though I do say so myself! Now all I need is a pair of goggles and a dirigible!

Well, and a few more steampunk style pieces...This is only the beginning, my friends...

What do you think? Yay or Nay on bustles? Is steampunk your thing?
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