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Volunteers Gardeners at Crieff

Despite rain and snowflurries, our Volunteer Gardeners were busy this week beginning the clean up of gardens.  What an amazing and dedicated group you are.  Thank you!

 

 

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Plaque in the Pollinator Garden at Crieff Hills

With thanks for a grant from TD Friends of the Environment Foundation for enabling the Pollinator Garden at Maclean Hall.

 

 

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Godly Play ...

 

 

 

There should always be time for Godly play ...

even at Crieff Hills.

 

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Canadian Christmas Bird Count

Thank you to Marion Robertson for this blog post.

 

            According to Bird Studies Canada, the Christmas bird count started in 1900. This makes the count the longest running Citizen Science project.  In Canada, approximately 14,000 birders count over 3 million birds from December 14 to January 5.  Data is collected by Birds Studies Canada to help create strategies to protect birds and their habitats.  In conjunction with Audubon, a 'Birds and Climate Change Report' has evolved highlighting dangerous bird population trends and the need for conservation action.

 

            It is easy to participate.  Simply contact Bird Studies Canada to find a count near you.  Counts may be done from the warmth of your home while watching bird feeders or hiking in the crisp winter weather observing fields for bird activity.  Don't forget to take photos and submit them to the Christmas Bird Count Photo contest. 

 

            I'll be donning on my favorite warm socks and traveling the trails of Crieff Hills.  My assistant, Runabout, will keep me company on our walks.  It is a great way to enjoy the Christmas season.

 

  Marion Robertson is co-owner of B Sweet Honey Nature Company and Puslinch Naturally Native Trees

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Hello Winter!

We have been waiting ...

Overnight there has been a change in what I see out my window.  Winter with its snow has arrived to Crieff Hills.  I see a beautiful world.

 

As people arrive for today's Luncheon Buffet I hear laughter and stomping of feet to clear their boots.  There is also talk of snowy roads and the need to slow down.  We have been waiting for the Ontario winter weather - most are prepared for what it brings.

 

Let us also remember this season of Advent.  A time to slow down.  A time to prepare and be prepared.

   
   

 

'Advent: the time to listen to footsteps - you can't hear footsteps when you are running yourself.  Bill McKibben'

 

'Take time to be aware that in the very midst of our busy preparations for the celebration of Christ’s birth in ancient Bethlehem, Christ is reborn in the Bethlehems of our homes and daily lives. Take time, slow down, be still, be awake to the Divine Mystery that looks so common and so ordinary yet is wondrously present.  Edward Hays, A Pilgrim’s Almanac'

 

'Let's approach Christmas with an expectant hush, rather than a last-minute rush!  Anonymous'

 

 

 

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The Red Cedars at Crieff Hills in November

Thanks to Marion Robertson for this blog -

Wow, what a seed collection year it has been!  Species of trees such as beech, black maple, ironwood and musclewood that create seeds every 5 to 7 years decided that this was their year.  Giant seed crops for some species but the wetter weather was not favorable for species, such as oak.  But, it is time to celebrate with the last species being collected this week – the red cedar.

 

Common names can be so confusing and it is no different for this tree.  Commonly known as red cedar, it is not actually a cedar but a juniper.  2 types of juniper grow in this region but the Juniperis virginiana is the juniper you see as you stroll the bluebird trail at Crieff Hills conference center.  The beautiful blue berries are not actually berries but scales tightly packed.  Reference books actually refer to the fruit as cones, not berries.  The cedar waxwing bird, named after this tree, do not really care.  For these winter residents the tree is essential as a food source through the long winter months. 

 

While you are walking the trails of Crieff Hills, don't forget to admire these hardy blue berry adorned trees. A reminder, the Christmas luncheons are coming up next week.  I understand there are some spaces still available.

 

  Marion Robertson is co owner of B Sweet Honey Nature Company and Puslinch Naturally Native Trees

 

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The RAW CARROT visits Crieff Hills

Assembly Council and the Life and Mission Agency of the Presbyterian Church in Canada held a combined meeting at Crieff Hills.  While here  co-directors of The Raw Carrot, Rebecca Sherbino and Colleen Graham, shared their vision and the story of The Raw Carrot.  As well, everyone was treated to a bowl of Hearty Lentil & Barley or Mulligatawny soup.  To find out more about The Raw Carrot go to their web site www.the rawcarrot.com.

 

 

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Today's promise ...

Today's photo of beauty was taken by David looking out from House of Dove.  God's promise.

 

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Retirement Planning - Learning, Listening and Creative Fun

Looking ahead and planning ... that is what this Retreat was all about.  Coming to this retreat were those who are retired as well as those who are thinking ahead to retirement.  With the leadership of Rev. Dr. Andrew Irvine there was time for listening, sharing, and soul searching as each looked at this new stage in life. 

 

Listening to God ...

Who will you be? 

What will give meaning to your life in the years ahead ...

which may be 30 or more!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Time for Worship

 

 

One of the free time actvities - Watercolours with Debbie Ellis

 

 

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Fall cleanup in the gardens

Today was a beautiful fall day and our volunteer gardeners were once again busy at work.  Cleaning up the kitchen garden was the first thing on the list.  Once tackled, it was off to plant bulbs which will be so appreciated and bring many smiles next spring.  What would we do without this group of talented, energetic and dedicated volunteers.  Thank you!

 

Cleaning up the Kitchen Gardens at Crieff

     

 

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