Monday, May 9, 2016

Our Engagement Photo's

photo by Avenue Photo (Toronto)

Richard and I finally got our engagement photo's taken. On a chilly, but thankfully sunny Sunday morning two weeks ago, we met with our photographer Margaret Diotalevi of Avenue Photo. We get to call her 'our photographer' because Margaret will be the person capturing our wedding day.

visit Avenue Photo at

So there we were, the two of us who criticize pretty much every snapshot taken of ourselves. It's bad enough alone, but together one of is generally making a weird face, blinking or something to throw the shot off. We were a handful for Margaret.

photo by Avenue Photo (Toronto)

We were up early to catch the morning sun at Gairloch Gardens - right at the lake in Oakville. The 'not a morning girl' managed to get hair and makeup together for the early sunrise shoot.
The gardens are pretty and fit right up to the shoreline of Lake Ontario. All of the elements are really 'us' - the lake, gardens and the old stone wall around the studio building made the location perfect.

photo by Avenue Photo (Toronto)

We will have loads of wedding photo's in about a month and a half, but I love having pictures of us in everyday clothes. We were like a young couple half our age, trying to decide what we would wear and getting it all together. I even did a quick change of clothes in the parking lot at the car......... silly kids!
Doing all of this together is a great romantic feed for a relationship. I loved snuggling with Richard and allowing someone to capture our romance.

This photo is such a fairy tale shot - just love it.

photo by Avenue Photo (Toronto)

The excuse of our upcoming wedding is certainly the best reason to work with a professional photographer. But after looking at all of the pictures I wonder why we waited so long to take professional photo's together. If you are a couple or a family who does not have professional photos yet, take the time and book a session to capture something you'll always treasure.

photo by Avenue Photo (Toronto)

Saturday, May 7, 2016

Best Mother's Day Gift

Motherhood. It's a blessing. 
One of the toughest and most rewarding jobs - EVER. 
Being a Mom and Grandma is the best gift I have ever received in my life, hands down. 
I was born to do this and love it all. 
I give thanks to God for this wonderful blessing.

Happy Mother's Day to You.

Friday, May 6, 2016

At Cardinal House this week

First and foremost, to our fellow Canadians from Fort McMurray, Alberta - 
our thoughts and prayers are with you and your families. 
This week, ironically Emergency Preparedness Week, 88,000 people were evacuated from Fort McMurray because of a forest fire that is still raging out of control. 
If you want to help families who narrowly escaped - 
donations  can be made at

This week at Cardinal House ........

We have some special visitors on the way. A bird nest has taken shape above one of our outdoor speakers on the lanai. It's a cozy spot to raise a new family. I'd love to share a picture of what little we can see, but we are all staying back from the area so that we don't scare the mother. Our kitchen table is at the window right beneath the area, so we are looking forward to hearing some little chirping soon.

Richard helped me get into the spring of things with a vibrant tulip bouquet this week. Having flowers near the sink makes the chore of cleaning or cooking a lot brighter.

This is the state of my dining room table currently. Little packages of things I ordered for the wedding have arrived, files of all the contracts, rsvp cards, a basket for the flower girl and personalized vow books. It all reminds me that I need to stop and get a Rubbermaid bin with lid and tuck it away safely.
A collection of dresses for bridesmaids, flower girl and my sister are slowly taking over the guest room. Hey - it's wedding fever time at Cardinal House........

I'm off to the nursery today to hopefully bring home those cells of Trillium plants I wrote about the other day. The great temperatures today and this weekend are perfect to get some of the planters filled with a bit of prettiness.
There are three hydrangea in the house that are crying out to get planted in the garden. This large plant was a snow white flower when she first came home, once in the garden bed I'm sure she'll bloom to her original colour again.

Our daily reminder of the fast approaching wedding date. I'm sure Richard would like to take a board eraser to it. Almost there Honey.

..... and your plans for the weekend ?

Tuesday, May 3, 2016

Tis the season to get dirt under your nails.

I really love spring. Getting into the garden and seeing everything peeking up from the ground makes me happy. It's the start of garden boots and dirt under your nails season.

It's amazing that just going to the garden centers and breathing in the smell of fresh soil seems to give me energy to go home and dig. Last year our new garden beds were starting to settle in the yard since the construction; this year I plan to add colour with more flowers and variegated bushes.

I feel like the plants are calling out my name when I wander through the garden center. At this time of the year especially, it's difficult to leave without packing them all into my vehicle and bringing them home. Time to make a list of needs first and wants second.

As most gardeners know the start of the season begins with clean up and top up. Time to order a delivery of top soil to add once the garden has been turned over and cleaned. In addition to replacing a couple of small cedar tree's that are looking sad, and two dogwood bushed that the rabbits chewed down - my list of additions includes:

Trilliums - this is our provincial flower and I love it. We have a couple at the back of our property and many more just beyond our yard, but I want to grow a lot of them in our yard. There are select growers in the area who carry them and hopefully I can still get a few to build a healthy bed of them.

Climbing roses - The wall of our garage is the south wall and gets a good amount of sun each day. The warmth of the brick is a great spot for climbing vines and roses. This year I will add a rambling old rose (yet to be decided on) to eventually spread over the garage entrance and the south wall.

Silver queen euonymus and purple allium - The north wall garden area of our property is deceiving, it gets more sunshine than you think at first glance. The area is a seldom used walkway to the backyard that is a solid brick wall of the house on one side, with a wooden property fence on the other side of the walkway. There is garden bed on both sides of the walkway - the wall side currently has yews. The fence side will be injected this year with Silver Queen Euonymus (one of my favourites) and in the fall a generous planting of purple allium. It's a pretty combination.

Daylilies - Now that the canopy of tree's has opened up a bit on the property there are more hours of sunshine on the garden beds. Daylilies in a variety of colours will be added to several area's - I love the way they blow in the breeze.

Boston Fern - I've ordered ten Boston Fern plants (huge from a Niagara grower) for the house and to use for the wedding.

The plants are indeed calling my name every time ........... 'Katherine, take me home'. It's like being a kid in a candy store for me. And yes, the sweet girl who does my nails will tisk, tisk me over the next month. But this is my most favourite time of the year and a little dirt never hurt anyone.

Are you in the garden? 
What is your favourite season?