Category Archives: Beyond the garden


The vacation to B.C. was just what we needed.

It’s winter, so this time we were there to ski, but we always fit in time for Squamish, and, of course, Vancouver.

In Squamish, we never go wrong when visiting the Howe Sound Inn.   We remember its early days, but now it’s packed to the gills every time we visit.  Great fare, great beer, great time.

But the big shout out today goes to the Zephyr Cafe.  It’s the ultimate locals place.  Food: simply amazing and based on simple, straightforward ingredients. The breakfast bowl was a perfect start to an active day.

Not to steer too far from gardening, what’s notable about B.C. is that you can have great snow up at Whistler, while a few miles south the weather is mild and spring bulbs are already making their appearance. In Vancouver, planters outside restaurants and boutiques display simple and creative plantings.  Simply stunning, and a welcome reminder Spring is on its way.


Sweet Perry

We lost our sweet cat Perry last week.

I was hoping to post a few words — perhaps a story or two — that would share his funny, joyful personality.  But I’m not sure I can muster the energy to do that quite yet.

We adopted him from a local shelter as a nine-year-old.  Largely hairless due to severe allergies, the shelter had done a lot to heal his irritated skin when he had arrived at their doorstep. There were other issues that seemed to be autoimmune related, which we learned after we fostered and eventually adopted him.

Can a cat be appreciative?  He seemed to be.  When we first got him, it became clear he had been neglected, possibly abused. Amazingly, that didn’t seem to impact his personality. Initially shy, he grew more confident seemed happy to be alive each day.

With the right care and diet, not only did he grow back his hair, he grew into an incredibly energetic older cat. He’d bring his favorite toy to us, wherever we were in the house, and sit there, like, “are you going to play with me or what?”  And when he played, he leaped amazingly high.

We’ll miss so many things.  The way he’d wedge himself between us each night. They way he’d rub his face against ours to show affection. The way he always knew his name. His playfulness. And his keen “hunting” abilities — he could hone in on the smallest gnat and would always catch it.  And, of course, his quiet way of just being.

It was a tough week, trying to sort out how to turn around a quickly declining situation.  I wish we could have done more, but are grateful to our vet, and to the emergency care clinic where he finally lost the fight.

Thanks, Perry, for being a part of our lives. You’ll always be in our hearts.