The Lazy Gardener

[JUL2017] I confess quite openly to my guests, I am a lazy gardener–at least when it comes to flower gardens. It’s not that I don’t enjoy floral beauty. It’s just that, for now anyhow, there’s only so much time and a lot of other tasks are higher up the TBD list. Yet despite my confession…

Blackcurrant Wisdom

[JUL2017] I had hung some laundry on the line today and was waiting for the next load to finish in the washer when I saw there were lots of ripe looking blackcurrants in the bushes nearby. I don’t really cultivate these blackcurrant bushes… that they keep coming back year after year is more in spite…

Starry Country Night

[JUN2017] One of the things I noticed very soon after moving to the country 8 years ago was the awesome night sky. Away from the light pollution and air pollution of the GTA, a clear evening brings countless numbers of stars, and a milky way clearly visible to the naked eye. It is truly magical….

Loo Number 2

[MAY2017] Last year, I started offering private camping as an accommodation option during the summer. It was a great success, with every August weekend booked… I even had campers from as far away as Quebec and Michigan! In order to provide guests with a convenient toilet, I came up with the clever idea of sticking…

Signs of Spring

[APR2017] I can’t promise the summer-like temps of this past weekend will continue but I am fairly certain we are safely beyond winter-like conditions. Signs of spring abound here: flower shoots are poking above the ground, the little “snowdrop” flowers (above) are blooming, the general chorus of bird sounds are noticeably different as some species…

Atypical Winter!

[FEB2017] So, just a week after writing about “classic” winter, we get a bizarre dip into spring with temps more characteristic of late March or early April. My Airbnb guests this weekend (return guests, truly the nicest compliment for a host!) could not have had a more stellar holiday longer weekend!! Still lots of snow…

Classic Winter

[FEB2017] It’s been a near-perfect “classic” winter here in  Grey-Bruce so far this year. There has been lots of snow… snowshoes have been necessary gear to navigate the trails since early January… but not so much as to be overwhelming.

Snow Dog

[DEC2016] My daughter, who is studying Community Design and Environment, Sustainability & Society, at Dalhousie U, was back in Ontario for the holidays. She stayed with me here during the days leading up to Christmas and left this fine (and well-behaved)  canine specimen for my next Airbnb guest, who arrived today… to find the snow…

Winter Dawn

[NOV2016] We’re getting into prime “dark period” now, the most challenging time for solar-powered off-grid living. The 6 weeks preceding and following the winter solstice mean short days and sun low on the horizon… and pretty much assure some need to run the generator, especially during a string of overcast days. But this time of…

Autumn Passings

[OCT2016] Every season holds enchantments here but, perhaps, my personal favourite time is early autumn. The last of the bugs are gone, the weather is generally glorious, and the startling beauty of transformation is everywhere to be seen. And not just seen. Engaging other senses, fall also brings new smells as the forest floor dampens,…

A Most Extraordinary Tree

[SEP2016] Over the past year, there has been a wonderful and ever-growing initiative in Grey-Bruce counties called The Extraordinary Tree Project which seeks to celebrate the significance and influence of the tree in our lives. Such a thing seems particularly appropriate in Grey-Bruce, seeing as it contains some of the highest forest cover density in…

Blowin’ in the wind

[AUG2016] August saw four consecutive weekends of guests here, most of them using the Private Camping option, folks who wanted access to the Bruce Peninsula but without the crowds and noise involved with actually staying there in peak tourist time… peace and space to come back to at the end of the day  🙂 Several…

Dog Days of Summer

[AUG2016] Back in the dark days of winter, I took a lovely trip to Costa Rica, staying at an off-grid eco-lodge named Rancho Margot near the Arenal volcano in the northwest of the country. It’s an amazing spot and, in a similar way to how the Cordwood Cabin guest accommodation here is nestled into the…

Breakfast-in-a-Box

[JUL2016] So far, guests have all opted to come for breakfast at the main house… it’s great to chat and get to know guests, and I am able to offer them a broad selection of food choices. But I do offer the option to bring a light breakfast out to the Cordwood Cabin or to…