Saturday, February 28, 2015


Frances Itani - Canadian writer of fiction, poetry and essays

March 1 is CDP Theme Day and the theme is AGING.

This wonderful author is an elegant writer who began her career life as a nurse and THEN became a writer. At age 37 she published her first book for children. Ten years later she published her first book of short stories. At age 56 she published her first novel for adults,  and at age 72 she was short-listed for the 2014 Giller Prize, the most prestigious prize for fiction given in Canada (worth $100,000 in November 2014).

Book signing after she delivered her talk

I am privileged to be on the board of the East Gwillimbury Friends of the Library, a group that hosted Frances Itani at an author reading in November 2014. EG is NOT Toronto where an author reading might encourage an audience of 25 or so readers to attend. NO! We are in East Gwillimbury  (in the boonies 45 minutes north of Toronto) where our author readings consistently boast an audience of 80 or 100 people...or more.  I kid you not! Yep, people here READ!!

My favourite Itani book is Deafening - a deeply profound novel about what it was like to be the deaf wife of a Canadian soldier in WWI.

The book for which Itani came close to being winner of the Giller Prize, Tell, is about two small-town Ontario families facing loss at the end of WWI ( a sort-of followup to Deafening, although the books can certainly be read independently.)

As interested about her audience as we were about her

Remembering the Bones is a bit weird, I confess, but I did read it to the end.  And once I got used to the idea that the protagonist was dying, I became curious about what might happen next.

One book I have not yet read, Requiem, is said by friends of mine to be her best,  so it's on my must-read list.

I sense there  are a few more books ready to be written by Frances Itani.  She's in her 70s but not anywhere near  being "old" yet. Frances Itani is aging well.

Black Kitty

Kitty waiting to be let in

I didn't think anyone lived in this building in the farming area where I took this photo, but this kitty seems to think someone does.

I am linking to Saturday Critters HERE.

Friday, February 27, 2015


Baldwin, Ontario, east of the dam

This photo was taken a couple of months ago BEFORE Ontario became a giant iceberg floating amongst lakes Ontario, Erie, Huron and Superior. (BTW: Did you know that the only Great Lake that Ontario doesn't touch is Lake Michigan?)

This photo was taken on the Black River in Baldwin just north of East Gwillimbury where I live.

To enjoy reflections from around the world, visit James at Weekend Reflections HERE

Thursday, February 26, 2015

Mailbox and Fence

 Country mailbox

Whoever ploughs this road is a conscientious driver! Many mailboxes are ploughed down during the winter months, but you can see here that the plough driver actually drove around this one.

Hmm, I took this photo last year. I should check to see if the same mailbox is still there.  I say this because I noticed a few days ago on another road that two speed limit signs have recently been ploughed down. (In protest???)

Country fence behind the mailbox

I saw a list of fill-ins on Rose's blog and have decided to fill in the blanks of the first 5 here:

1. If I were a month I’d be May when the world looks so new and green and full of promise.

2. If I were a day I’d be Tuesday because “Tuesday’s child is full of grace” ... and I’m not!

3. If I were a time of day I’d be when dawn breaks, the most beautiful time of most days.

4.  If I were a font I’d be Verdana as it’s clean, straight forward and easy to read. On days I’m feeling fancy I’d be Papyrus (which is what I use to write “Tina’s Lens” on my favourite photos.)

5. If I were a planet I’d be Earth. We live on a gorgeous planet and I love photographing what I see here.

I am linking to Good Fences HERE.

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Tractor Very Closeup

 Grate on a tractor sitting in a farm parking lot - original photo

Old and Oxidized just like the previous post...but I played with filters on this one.

 Turned, cropped, cutout

 Turned, cropped, cutout, inverted

Turned, cropped, cutout, colored pencil

I am linking to NF Digital Art Meme  HERE.

I am joining Geometric Friday HERE.


Old and oxidized (rusted) chain on post

O is for OXIDIZED and OLD.

 Oxidized metal spring under tractor seat

 Oxidized barrel hoops

Oxidized windmill

I am linking to Jenny Matlock at Alphabe-Thursday HERE 

Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Black Duck

 American Black Duck (Anas rubripes)

Very similar in looks to female mallards, don't you think? But notice his bill is YELLOW not orange like a female Mallard. True they are not really black but actually chocolate brown.

Time for a rest

I'm sorry there were no female black ducks around, or I'd show you the female looks very much like the male, although her bill is is a dull green.

Hanging out with Mallards

They often flock with Mallards (and sometimes breed with them too) so here you can see that the American Black Duck really is darker than a female Mallard.

I am connecting to Stewart M's Wild Bird Wednesday HERE

Monday, February 23, 2015

A Favourite Harbour of Mine

 Whitby Harbour last Friday

Some of you may have noticed that I frequently visit the Town of Whitby on Lake Ontario. Last Friday was a bitterly cold day but since my husband and I had met some friends for lunch close by, we just had to check out the harbour.

Looking at the west side of  the harbour entrance

The last time we'd visited the harbour, it was completely frozen. I was pretty sure it would still be as the temperature was way, WAY below freezing.

 The rocks totally covered in layers of ice

 Large sheets of floating ice

But to my surprise there were lots of places for ducks to swim and there were a few Common Goldeneyes, Red-breasted Mergansers, Lesser Scaups, Mallards and Trumpeter Swans swimming amongst the ice floes.

 Male Common Goldeneye

It was interesting to watch the ducks as they were constantly dodging floes that were floating into each other.

Female Common Goldeneye

Please visit Michelle at Rambling Woods for more NATURE NOTES. 

Old House, New Fence

 Built in 1880, 135 years ago

This poor old house in Uxbridge, Ontario must have been a beauty in its day, part of a farm. But now it sits very close to a round-about on a busy road. ...which may explain the new fence.

 Needs some TLC

The yellow bricks are still in very good condition and I hope someone is planning to paint the shutters and gingerbread trim.

A closer look

More photos from Our World can be seen by clicking HERE.

Sunday, February 22, 2015

More Frost on Windows

 Original photo

This is a closeup of one of the vertical window mullions around which the frost pictures formed one night last week. The sun was just coming up when I took these photos. It was mostly overcast day and the frost looked white so...


I decided to play with the photo. This is what it looked like when I inverted the colours.


And this is what it looked like when I added a slight bit of posterized filter.

I am linking to Mandarin Orange Monday here

Frost on Windows

 Frost on sunroom windows #1

The temperatures went quite low this week, which sparked Jack Frost's imagination overnight revealing these lovely frost paintings on a few of our sunroom's windows.

 Frost on sunroom windows #2

It's amazing how many different designs there were!  It was a sunny morning so I had to grab my camera quick to take these photos before the frost melted.

 Frost on sunroom windows #3

I am linking to Sunlit Sunday HERE

Saturday, February 21, 2015

Sunroom Floor

 Shadows on floor

Although it has been a very cold February, the sun has appeared quite a bit. Our sunroom has south-facing windows so when the sun shines the room is cheerfully bright.

 Bottom of the table that's casting the shadows

Looking at the shadows through beveled glass in the doors leading to the sunroom

The sun is shining but the sunroom is otherwise unheated.

I am linking to Shadow Shot Sunday 2 HERE.

Herring Gulls

 Closeup of Herring Gull

Not all gulls are rowdy and pests, but this species sure can be! It's one of the two species most commonly seen in the Great Lakes area. I recognize them by their size (they are BIG gulls), their pink legs and feet and the red dot on their lower bill.

A week or so ago, two herring gulls were hanging out with some Canada Geese and Mallards at the entrance to the harbour at Bond Head.  Although they are BIG for gulls they are much smaller than the mallards and geese. Someone was feeding seeds to the birds and the geese weren't letting the greedy gulls anywhere near the seeds until they were finished.

Another view

The gulls kept trying though! They are very persistent and finally got to eat too.

I am linking to Saturday Critters HERE.

Friday, February 20, 2015

Sweet Dreams

Sorry, the positive change promised here is closed

These reflections are in the windows of a medical equipment and supply store.

To enjoy reflections from around the world, visit James at Weekend Reflections HERE

Thursday, February 19, 2015


Pallets stacked outdoors outside a vegetable packing company, Holland Marsh

I cropped the original photo (see the third photo) and added a filter.

Cropped and rotated, no filter

 The original photo

Cropped, rotated, filter added

I am joining Geometric Friday HERE.

I am linking to NF Digital Art Meme  HERE.

Flat or Steep

Fences on fairly flat terrain

 Today, I have two photos - a contrast of fencing on level ground and on a hill.

Gate on the side of a hill?

This hill is as steep as it looks and there's a quick descent from the gate to the gully below. I'm standing on the road on the other side of the gully standing beside a guard rail. I've been trying to figure out why there would be a gate there. Anyone have any bright ideas?

I am linking to Good Fences HERE.

Wednesday, February 18, 2015


 Air horns behind diesel train engine circa 1950

N is for NOISE.

I bet these horns make a LOT of noise warning people they are about to enter an intersection!

Bell on vintage diesel engine

I am linking to Jenny Matlock at Alphabe-Thursday HERE 

Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Northern Mockingbird

 Northern Mockingbird (Mimus polyglottus)

We've been watching for this feathered fellow for several weeks. It's a year-round resident here but he had been eluding us until last week when a birder friend told us he had seen the mockingbird munching on some small rose hips.

 Hips from wild rose

Turns out the bird is quite willing to eat supper if its hungry enough, even when there are people a few feet away.

 Which one looks tastiest?

I guess these hips were tasty enough to take the risk.

I am connecting to Stewart M's Wild Bird Wednesday HERE

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East Gwillimbury is a rural town less than an hour north of Toronto, Canada's largest city. My family calls me CameraGirl because I take my camera with me wherever I go.