Archive for May, 2013

Cake successes

A few months ago now, Charissa and I took the next level of the cake-decorating class, this time learning how to make flowers out of royal icing.

The course ended right around the time that fundraising for the CHEO bike ride was supposed to start. So of course, knowing that practice makes perfect, I decided to offer decorated baked goodies as an incentive for donations. More money raised for CHEO, more baking and decorating practice for me, delicious goods for my coworkers – perfect!

I agonized over donation -> kind of baked treat mapping for a while, but eventually settled on a scheme that I thought was manageable. Cupcakes for most of the “tiers”, with a cake being the reward for the highest “tier” of donations. In my fundraising email, I made a flippant/brilliant comment (I still can’t decide whether I was serious or not) about how I was almost hoping not many people would donate that much, so I didn’t need to make too many cakes.

Well then. What I didn’t expect was the uptake of my offer – luckily I only sent it out to a subset of coworkers. 5 of them donated enough to earn themselves a cake, with the others getting various numbers of cupcakes. And over the course of the last month, poor hubby has had to watch a stream of cakes leaving the house, none of them available for him to sample. 🙂 My poor patient man!






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All Porky, all the time

This seems to have turned into a porcupine-cam blog, but I’ll roll with it for now.


We’ve been seeing Porky on and off a few times a week lately. This afternoon, in the middle of a windstorm, I saw him teetering on a pretty thin tree. “Poor thing”, I thought, why is he up there? The answer, of course, was snacks. When I went out to investigate, it turned out that he had gnawed off a little branch, and was methodically cleaning leaves off of it. Apparently he likes his fresh young leaves!


He was cute, holding on to the swaying trunk with his hind legs, grasping the food branch in his front.


Having taken a few photos, I went inside, keeping an eye on him. Next time I wandered into the room – he was no longer on the tree. “Odd”, I thought. We’ve seen him down-climb before, and he’s definitely very meticulous about his foot placement – and veeeery slow. My guess is that he fell, given the strength of the wind that day and the short timespan between him being up in the tree… and not.

When I went out to check, he was below the tree, chuffing to himself and fluffing out his coat. Poor guy.


When I went back inside to report all this to hubby, both of us were a bit concerned about Porky hurting himself. You know what? It must not have been too bad, though – because half an hour later, guess where I saw him?


Back up the same tree, gnawing on an even higher branch… *facepalm* Oh you poor dummy.

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He’s back!

Remember Porky? Well, it appears that he’s made our neighbourhood his home!


On a few different occasions now we’ve seen him around. For the last month, we kept seeing him napping in one of the fir trees out back.


While they may make a good perch for a porcupine, they’re pretty bad for being able to take pictures of said porcupine!


Doesn’t he look a little bit prehistoric?


Today, however, he chose a (birch?) tree farther back in the forest, providing some nice views. I think this is definitely the latest we’ve had this little leaf cover on the trees.


Unfortunately, it was getting close to dark by the time I spotted him, so the lighting wasn’t that great for taking photos. And I didn’t want to blind the poor thing with a flash, possibly causing him to fall out of the tree, poke himself with his own needles, and risk getting an infection and dying (yes, apparently they’re so prone to doing that that their skin contains antibiotics – how is that for genetically engineered superiority?!).

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