Minden Flood Update – Condo Summer Gardens in Chicago – May 15 2013 (PHOTOS) #chicago #garden #summer

Ξ May 17th, 2013 | → 0 Comments | ∇ home, home and garden, nature, Ontario, Photography, spring, summertime |

State of emergency lifted for Minden ON.

State of emergency lifted for Minden ON.

Spring is finally here with summer gardens on the way–and outdoor gardens the the Northwest Chicago Suburbs have taken notice.
Creeping Jenny

Creeping Jenny

Ostrich Ferns

Ostrich Ferns

Look quickly though as many residents of these Chicago condo summer gardens will morph until they are nearly unrecognizable as summer moves closer—and it will continue well beyond that, too. I find it fascinating to watch and enjoy and snap shots of all this activity. I’m probably really going to miss it for the six weeks I am in Canada this summer…hope to see that the perennials that were planted at Maple Lake in recent years survived Ontario’s Winter 2013.


Halcyon Hosta

Halcyon Hosta with Creeping Jenny in the backgound

Crabapple blossoms (white)

Crabapple blossoms (white petals) Back yard

Japanese Maple

Japanese Maple (front yard)


In full blossom ( Crabapple tree)

In full blossom (Crabapple tree)



Minden Hills Flood – How To Help (PHOTOS) (VIDEO) What’s Happening in the Ontario Highlands #haliburtonhighlands

Ξ May 11th, 2013 | → 0 Comments | ∇ Canada, community, community services, cottage country, events, government/politics, Haliburton Highlands, home, Minden Hills Township, nature, Ontario, spring, video, weather |

 How to Help the Flood-Ravaged Minden Hills

IMMEDIATE NEED TO HELP people who have been displaced by the Minden Flood: We need items like hand soap, tooth paste, deodorant, toilet paper, shampoo.

SOURCE: Minden Food Bank


Aerial View of Minden, April 2013

Aerial View of Minden, April 2013


Though last week’s good weather helped to dry things up, the fallout from the 2013 Minden Hills flooding is far from over.

In an effort to bring you up-to-the-minute, I’m devoting this post to the Minden Hills area in hopes that you will reach out and support them in any way you possibly can. Over 150 families are homeless and many will permanently lose their homes as they do not have the option to purchase flood insurance coverage since they live on a flood plain.

Please read above “Flood related Community Information” about the latest, streamlined way that anyone, anywhere can donate to the flood relief fund. This makes me so happy as I’m 700 miles away right now and want to help and now can do so on payday using PayPal. Since I’m spending a month and-a-half in the Algonquin Highlands this summer, I intend to do as much of my shopping at local Minden businesses as possible and I hope other folks follow suit this year.

The sun coming out also brought this snap of the Minden Bridge opening this week past:

Minden Bridge reopens

Minden Bridge reopens (May 2013)

Coach’s Corner Minden Hills Flood Relief May 8th 2013

A huge thank you to Ron Maclean and Don Cherry for giving our town such needed national exposure as we work to raise donations for our devastated town. Over 150 families are homeless and many will permanently lose their homes as they do not have the option to purchase flood insurance coverage as they are in a flood plain. Please visit www.pinestone-resort.com and click on the “Donate Now” button to donate to the “Township of Minden Hills Flood Relief” Trust account or visit any CIBC Branch – All Donations so VERY MUCH APPRECIATED!


 CBC news report

More damage from high water in Minden Hills.

Fund raising efforts for the Minden Community After the Jump:



My CONDO SUMMER GARDEN in Sweet HOME Chicagoland! (PHOTOS) #chicagoland #condo #garden

Ξ June 21st, 2012 | → 1 Comments | ∇ home, home and garden, My dog, nature, Obi, Photography, summertime, United States |


Beautiful day today–clear–in the 80’s F, especially good too, because a task I had needed to do got cancelled–opening up some unstructured time for me–and the dogs.

Spouse’s garden is looking pretty rad. The Purple Smoke tree in particular is a favourite of mine.

In the backyard – Purple Smoke Tree – 6-21-12


‘Obi’ -6-2012 – Schaumburg

Hosta – 6.21.112


Creeping upward… trellis


Raven and Obi – backyard 6.21.12


OK. That’s pretty much all in back right now–that’s thriving after this brutal weather, anyway. There’s much more in front but I don’t really hang out there. It’s an odd sunlight situation both in front and back because of the way this funny old condo building is built.

We (the condo assoc.–not me personally) fired our on-site groundskeeper and and are not buying much in the way of foliage so what spouse does–the scale, seeing  as we own only one condo here not all six units, for this building. He does a real lot. People thank him though, which is all the encouragement he needs, I think.

in this


Our Trip To Maple Lake Ontario – Long Weekend & Weeks After – Christopher’s 19th Birthday PHOTOS

Ξ August 21st, 2011 | → 0 Comments | ∇ Canada, events, family, Food and/or Drink, Haliburton Highlands, holiday(s), home, Maple Lake Ontario, Ontario, Photography, summertime, Travel/Vacation |


Chris's 19th - Roger, Chris, & Jim - August 20, 2011


After tomorrow it is officially vacation for Roger and me:

Chris has to go to school and work and Jim has a still-new job clocking in 6 or 7 days a week–and a real-no-excuses boss. Fortunately, Jim had a trip back east my see his grandparents not too long ago. <3

Chris is flying into Buffalo, N.Y. –20 miles from the Falls– on Friday morning—leaving Sunday evening. My mom’s memorial is on Sunday August 28th …with folks coming in to the Haliburton Highlands so we decided to make it more vacation-y and stay overnight at a close to everything place in Niagara Falls. Three stars that my oldest son helped me very much in finding–for cheap–check out the topographic map of how easy it is to walk to the Falls! Excitement!


Niagara Falls Ontario--topographic & map view

:)… then the next morning at 11 a.m.–perfect-ish for a night owl like me…pick up Chris and do something by the Falls before heading back to Maple Lake  until Labour Day… is the plan.

PHOTOS: Chris’s birthday at Fridays’ tonight- He refused the singing. (boo):

Chris 19th birthday aug20-2011-fridays-schaumburg-il-by cyn-mccrackan

– Plus:  No one* takes my picture – further proof

*only me

August 19 2011 - Son's 19th birthday Fridays with entire nuclear family!


Some Friday's decor that made me nostalgic and I was already _in_ that frame of mind! * On another note: Was I the only chick that thought Linda Ronstadt was hot like 'this'--versus her hot pants-period (later)? I thought so. She's got really soulful eyes.



Happy 19th birthday, Christopher!
After dinner we saw this film:

Saw on August 20 2011

It was just OK…not great. A couple of the science-based plot holes really distracted me from the film. Also, they wasted Frieda Pinto (sp?) other than as eye candy.



Happy Canada Day!!! Where to Have Fun in Haliburton Highlands #haliburtonhighlands

Ξ June 30th, 2011 | → 0 Comments | ∇ Canada, cottage country, entertainment, family, Food and/or Drink, Haliburton Highlands, holiday(s), home, Ontario, summertime |

I Love Canada!!!!


Happy Canada Day!

Credit and thanks to the Haliburton Highlands Visitors Centre!!


I was born in Canada and despite moving to the United States as a kid, I will always be a Canadian (have the passport  to prove it). Part of the reason, probably a big part, is that I was raised by Canadians. My mother especially, was pretty hardcore Canadian. I’ll offer an example. I’d come home from elementary school after being taught American History. Mother would always remind me that there were two sides to the ‘history’ I was learning and I was being taught the ‘wrong’ side! Example phrasing: “It’s all lies.” A bit confusing, pretty much a guarantee that I wouldn’t exactly excel  in my history classes but her intent was pure–to help me stay true to my Canadian roots. I have to state that 1. It worked and two, in a slightly less adamant way (having struggled with American History, I wanted them to at least pass it!) I told both my kids the same thing– to at least to remember you should make up your own mind about what is true and what is not.

Second thing that kept me true to Canada was Maple Lake, Ontario. Spending  years, over time, on Maple Lake immersed in cottage country beauty, I knew that a little piece of heaven exsisted north of the border–one that I continue to savour to this day and plan to savour to my last.

Happy Canada Day!

Free clip Art


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