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Tuesday, 22 July 2014

Another Doris McCarthy Trail Hike

Having moved to Scarborough almost a year ago, we have had a chance to visit a few of the conservation and lake trail areas near us. One I mentioned in a previous post, a ravine near us which extents quite some distance and covers many parks and trails, is one. The Doris McCarthy trail is our favourite so far though.

We decided to get out Sunday night for a longish walk. It's always an enjoyable thing to do together and we always see something, often more than one something, interesting.

It was around 3:30ish so it was quite quiet there. A couple people. No dragonflies but lots of butterflies and moths. This time we headed east from the path once we hit the shoreline below. We walked on a rock ledge around an attached island I guess it sort of was. In the centre of this island, there was a tent, empty we think. A little freaky, guess someone lives in it here or there or maybe always. A bit further we did run into an odd man using some sort of machine to make what we thought were bird calls, but as we got closer, I don't think this is what he was doing. Possibly he was a challenged person, not too sure. I took a shot of him as he walked away as he was quite curiosity inducing.

Along this sort of precarious detour around this rock shelf, we looked and could see little fossils in the ones near the end. So cool!!!

Another really exciting sight, and there were 3 sightings of it, was a red tailed hawk and a juvi red tailed hawk crying for dinner in a far tree. I was able to see them but they were far so my images of them are not great. One is of the parent presumably, flying from the tree and the other was of the juvi as she sat on a branch, calling and calling. Another bird we saw but unfortunately could not identify, was very hidden in branches of a tree. There were 2 little yellow birds with some dark markings visible, in a nest, calling to their parents for food. Maybe some sort of warbler or yellow finches but we saw no others in the vicinity. So adorable but not easily seen nor photographed, though I got 1 shot which shows they were yellow and in a nest.

Part of this walkway, which I guess the city is also working on, it is similar to Tommy Thompson Park in that there is clean fill along a lot of the shoreline. Discarded bricks, scrapped building materials, chunks of marble and composite rock, rusted metal and re-bar, lots of cool stuff. At one point I lifted up a brick, turned it over, and there to our surprise was the husk of a butterfly pupa. Of all the bricks, and I pick that one to pick up and look at. It was so neat.

Friday, 11 July 2014

Mosaic Outlet Cover!

Looking for an unusual outlet cover which falls into my taste range, I hunted on eBay. I gave up and switched to Etsy. You can always find something hand made, one of a kind and unique via Etsy, more so than on the flea market like eBay of today. I discovered the perfect ones!

Mosaic pieces by VictoriaCharlotte had wonderful, OOAK light switch covers, outlets, and many other items that are just gorgeous.

I originally bought the red and orange outlet cover but when I got home, John informed me that the electrical outlet in our kitchen is actually a safety featured one so would need a rectangle opening light switch cover one in stead. I was disappointed but I will use the oranges mosaic one on our main living room wall in stead, and I ordered a second cover. There is a Bell phone jack cover on that same wall right beside the outlet in the kitchen so I just used copper acrylic paint to paint it, after sanding it so the paint will adhere. It looks so nice!

VictoriaCharlotte on Etsy

Monday, 7 July 2014

Glass Bar Top Project Complete

We managed to get our 7' piece of glass upstairs to our condo and on to our bar top. It was a scary venture but we did it.

I am so very happy that we decided to follow through with this idea. It is amazing and we love it. It has meaning to us and it looks so unique and beautiful. It really didn't cost much except the glass and sand so was an inexpensive project really but has so much value to us both. Both of us enjoyed pulling out things to put under the glass, into the sand, we wrote our kids' names in the sand as well as put a penny from each of our birth years together and drew a heart around it. It was fun to put the whole thing together.

See The Progress

Friday, 4 July 2014

Transformation of a Basic Bar Top into a Beautiful Bounty

When we first viewed our condo, before it was ours, we both had an idea for the bar top. It has a pretty high bull nose lip so we figured, hey, we could put things under that and a glass top could be cut to cover it and become the bar top :-)

The items we have chosen come from our walks over the last 3 years, some nostalgic items from our childhood and youth, things that have meaning to us, as well as some miscellaneous items that have just been saved over the years.

This is an ongoing progress of said idea:


Wednesday, 2 July 2014

Do It Myself Project

Well, though we were disappointed that we got nowhere trying to buy the Fasade tiles from Home Depot as no one had any idea how to special order them and to purchase them from the manufacturer needing only 12 isn't possible, so we ended up coming up with a way cheaper idea for our bar face. A metallic or textured wallpaper will do.

I finally stopped procrastinating on painting with the colours and ideas I had for our condo when we first were in it. In stead of sitting and working on designing stuff in Photoshop for a little while, I decided I should start getting to the painting wall by wall. Once it is started, it is actually fun. I began with the kitchen. Got the electric blue I wanted and got that on. The terracotta colour with the combing effect is the next step and I am excited to atempt that. I hope it looks like what I see in my head as if not, oh well, it'll have to stay.

Looking at the small strip of bar back splash that runs behind the sink and 90 degrees to the counter top, I had an idea that will be another project. I want to do a mosaic tile area there. This type of thing is not something I am familiar with doing but I want to attempt it as I feel it would go so well and be so warm and fit right in to the south western or Mexican feel we both enjoy in our surround. Colour is so positive feeling and both of us enjoy some colour in our environment. Possibly because we are both artists.

Investigating, I discovered a fairly good how to page for mosaic tiling. Once ready, I'll need to make sure I know what the materials I need are. As well, we may need to figure out a mesh base as the tiles won't be sitting flat, but upright on a facing towards us surface and also the surface is a veneer surface in a man made material currently and I don't personally know its adhesion abilites. The other possibility is to do it on a flat piece of hard board and mount that to the surface after doing the tiles on that flat surface which would be pre-cut to fit. Figuring out the source of these broken tile pieces will take some innovation but should be fun. The second area I'd liek to do with some sort of mosaic design is the area behind the stove where there is boring white tiles presently. These projects may need to wait as they will take some time and some pre planning.

How to a Lay a Broken Tile Mosaic

Make a Mosaic from Broken Tiles

me up on counter edging wall

blue base coat done - ready for comb effect in terracotta

Tuesday, 1 July 2014

Spring 2014 Summer Orgasmic Sunsets

This year, there have been more glorious sunsets than I've seen in a long time. Amazing, dramatic, brilliant colour palettes, just stunning_all_round_difficult_for_words_must_be_seen skies!

We are lucky to be able to see them pretty unencumbered from our balcony.

Here is a medley of selected beauties over the last 2 months :-)

Warning, tons of images!