Home & Garden: The Start of July

July started out with heat warnings and temperatures that felt close to 40 Celsius with the humidity. Little was done outside during this heat, except or brief moments outside with the camera or to water the plants. Photos are throughout this post.

yucca at craftygardener.ca
yucca coming into bloom

I recently received a had carved mouse by my cousin in England. My family emigrated to Canada in 1956 and I only saw family over there on a few times of holidays and when we were there for a few years. I had really lost contact with all family there once a couple of special aunts passed away, but on Ancestry I was able to slowly reconnect to them. And just a few months ago one cousin was visiting another and they were talking about me and all of a sudden I had a Facetime with them. How special and it left me in tears.

Wood carved mouse by Alan Kemp

It is a very special mouse to think that my childhood cousin carved this mouse from one piece of wood. It has a special home on the salt box on my kitchen counter. It’s the kind of mouse I don’t mind having in my kitchen.

book sculpture at craftygardener.ca

At the end of last month I attended a craft session at one of branches of the local library and learned how to do book sculpture. It turned out to be a lot easier than it looks.

I discovered various videos on YouTube (what can’t you find there!) and am ready to tackle ones that are a bit more challenging.

squirrels at craftygardener.ca
squirrel antics under the bird feeder

I’m slowly working on the embroidered pillow cases. There just seems to be a lot going on lately and I even didn’t post for a couple of weeks. We did think we were moving after 37 years so a lot of time was spent on list making, purging, and talking. But after reviewing the Status Certificate for the condo we decided it really wasn’t for us right now, just way to many restrictions that we weren’t totally ready for.

embroidered pillow cases at craftygardener.ca

One is completed and I’m starting work on the second one.

I get lots of inspiration from other stitchers at Slow Sunday Stitching and appreciate all the visits and comments from there. Visit them and gather some inspiration for yourself.

robins at craftygardener.ca
a young robin on the washing line

The toad had a visit the other day. I have a couple of toad homes in the garden, but I don’t think the toad ever uses them. See the toad in one of my boot planters.

toads at craftygardener.ca
teacup line

Find a yummy recipe to cook.

mince, veggies and mashed potatoes at craftygardener.ca

One of the meals I like to keep in the freezer is mince/veggies/potatoes. The potatoes are cooked and mashed and frozen in portions in muffin tins. I boil the ground beef or mince and add veggies on hand, usually peas, beans and carrots. It is then drained and the liquid used to make gluten free gravy. Mix the gravy back into the meat mixture and it makes enough for 6 portions which are frozen for when I need a fast gluten free meal.

hosta at craftygardener.ca
big blue hosta in bloom

I hope July has started out to be a good month for you.

critters at craftygardener.ca
critters in the garden

Check out Saturday’s Critters and see lots more wonderful wildlife photos.

Thanks for visiting today, hope you have time to leave a comment.

garden line

More from the gardener side: garden areas, bulbs, corms & tubers, plant profiles, seeds & seedpods, veggies & herbs,

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13 Responses

  1. Gail

    What a lovely garden you have! I like seeing the critters when they visit my yard too. I have also been working on my family tree and have connected with family members that I did not know I had. Those beautiful pillowcases remind me of some that I have that were embroidered by my grandmother. Enjoy your week!

  2. Eileen

    It is wonderful you were able to facebook with your cousins, I hope it happens more often now. I just love your saltbox with the carved mouse, so cute. Wonderful captures of the squirrel, bunny, birds and the cute toad with the toad house. Thank you for linking up and sharing your post. Take care, have a great weekend. Thank you for leaving me a comment.

  3. Myrtle Thomas

    Hello Linda, I enjoyed your July garden pictures, the cute mouse on the saltbox You do a lovely job on the pillowcases. It takes me way back to doing embroidery. Your blue hosta is lovely. I bought one while living in Barrie, was lovely too. The hostas were not doing well here so I dug them up and replanted them in an area with better soil and compost I bought so I hope they grow better next year. I’m glad you had a Facetime with the cousins in England and no doubt there will be more Facetimes. Enjoy your cool weekend.

  4. Vondean Erickson


    So wonderful to be able to connect with your cousin. I did the same thing one day last week. I have a cousin who lives in Missouri and our families always spent holidays together. We lived in Iowa so was a special treat to be with them. He is the only relative I have living in the US besides my siblings. I looked in a old telephone directory my mother had and his name and phone lumber was in it. We talked and talked. He just had a son pass away and his wife died a couple years ago. He told me about several of our cousins in Canada he keeps contact with. He told me he had lost phone numbers of my family and never could fine any information on us.
    Your flowers are beautiful. I went outside and deadheaded my rose bushes yesterday and it got very warm. I went out this morning but can not be out there too warm.
    I am going to try your mash potatoes and beef and vegtables. I love
    The pillowcases are so pretty. I have some my mother gave me years ago. I hate to use them.

    I enjoy your website so much and look forward to it.
    Be safe

  5. Debbie- Dabble

    Thar mouse is amazing and to think that it is hand carved!!
    The book art is really unique…I just had a second cousin of mine post something similar that she made…I do enjoy seeing your embroidery…I have several vintage pillowcases that have some amazing Tatting on the edges but the pillow cases themselves are stained….I am trying to think of something that I can do if I were to cut the tatted edging off the pillow cases…Any suggestions?? I hope you are having a great weekend!!

    • Crafty

      Hi Deb, Tatting could be used to edge table cloths, pillows, table runners, cloth wall hangings, or added to clothing at pocket edges etc. I just love the carved mouse and have it in my kitchen where I can see it numerous times a day. Thanks for visiting.

  6. Diann@LittlePenguinQuilts

    It looks beautiful at your house in spite of the heat, and lots of critters are enjoying your yard, too! The embroidered pillow cases are so pretty. I have a project like that tucked away somewhere – I should get it back out! Have a wonderful day!

  7. Lavender Dreams

    The yuccas are in bloom here and you can catch a glimpse of them all through the forest. Love catching up with you and seeing what a fun July you are having. We are stuck inside this week with the high temps! Hugs, Diane

  8. CathieJ

    How wonderful to reconnect with your Englis cousins. Your garden is so pretty. I like the variety of wildlife photos. Your embroidered pillowcases are so pretty.

  9. Quilter Kathy

    Your photography is just amazing! I adore the robin photos the most as they are near and dear to my heart! I love your pillowcases – I’ve embroidered tea towels but never a pillowcase… maybe that is next on my “to try” list?!?!

  10. Jenny Benton

    So wonderful to find your rellies again via Ancestry, such a thrill to receive the lovely little hand carved mouse. Your embroidered pillowcases are beautiful, well done. And I love all the wildlife photos of your garden visitors.

  11. Kim

    Wonderful you were able to reconnect with your overseas family again and enjoy special times via Zoom. Your cousin carves well. Such a sweet little mouse. The pillowcases are charming with your sweet embroidery; how lovely they will look on the bed. It sounds hot there but your garden is blooming beautifully and it certainly looks as if the critters enjoy your garden, too.

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