observed by Diane » photo journal for those who enjoy vignettes of an ordinary life

Morning in the Peace

{Recipe at the end of this post.}    I live in a region known as Peace Country thus the reason for my title. Living in the country does have its benefits, though I still long for the day we can return to the city. What I will miss are my beloved barn swallows. I love those birds and they are truly one of my morning delights.
A few days ago Roberta Murray tweeted that she noticed the hummingbirds are beginning to migrate south. I see that occurring as well (remember that I live north of the 55th parallel). My yard is currently a smorgasbord of sources for hummingbird nectar: tall blue delphiniums, maltese cross (lychnis), beautiful spires of fireweed, a vast array of lilies, coral bells (heuchera), and believe it or not, hummingbirds have been seen taking nectar from the holes in our birch trees created by the sapsuckers. I had to force myself indoors this morning knowing how much work I had waiting for me — but watching the hummingbirds and all the other birds was so entertaining and relaxing.

Most years, although we do get robins, none of the babies make it to fledge from the nest (because the squirrels & magpies eat them). For some strange reason, we actually have a couple families of robins that made it (though I was quite diligent about getting rid of magpies this spring) and they are a delight to watch.

"Fireweed grows wild and hummingbirds love it; one reason why I intentionally grow it in my garden. Besides, it

"Fireweed grows wild and hummingbirds love it; one reason why I intentionally grow it in my garden. Besides, it's beautiful."

I’m grateful for the feedback from some of you regarding upcoming topics. With the topic of posting photos of children on online photo sharing sites, that is a very long and involved discussion with multiple aspects. For that reason, I may discuss it in segments in a series of posts. It’s something I’ve been aware of for a very long time, in fact, I no longer post any photos of children at Flickr. Photos of children will only appear here and on my website. I’ve discussed in previous posts how people use sites like Flickr to actually search for photos and then help themselves to them. I won’t get into the topic today but will discuss it in upcoming posts. Yesterday, Shutter Sisters, had a discussion on the topic of having children’s photos on Flickr if you’d like to begin thinking about the concerns of posting children’s photos to online sharing sites.

Oh, before I log off and get back to work, I have a killer recipe to share with you (I know, what’s up with me?). All my life I have been a fan of egg salad, whether on its own or in a salad. Not everyone makes it … well … as tasty as it could be. Although I do have an old standby way of making it, today I made a similar version with a bit of a twist. It’s killer! I have to share it. I never use a recipe for anything and always go by eye so these amounts are approximate.


4 hard boiled eggs, peeled and sliced into small dices

Approximately 1-2 Tbsp finely chopped celery

(Optional: 1 finely chopped green onion)

Pinch of your favourite seasoning salt

Pinch of fresh ground pepper


2 Tbsp. mayonnaise (not that awful low fat stuff)

1 Tbsp. white vinegar

Secret ingredient for killer egg salad: about 1/4 – 1/2 teaspoon finely grated lemon zest

Mix dressing to emulsify, adding more liquid if necessary. It should not be runny but just barely moist enough to hold the egg together.

Now add the emulsified dressing to the egg mixture, stirring only enough to evenly coat and not to mush the egg. Serve as is on a bed of greens or in fresh rye (or bread of your choice) as a sandwich. It’s killer! Enjoy.

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eileen - August 11, 2009 - 1:50 pm

When I was a little girl, grades 3-4, we lived in Taylor Flats … on the Peace River.

Adding lemon zest to egg salad sounds VERY interesting. Will give that a try real soon. I’ve never added vinegar before either.

Look forward to your discussions on posting pictures of children … not that I have very many children to take pictures of. I’ve never used Flickr much.

Jen - August 11, 2009 - 3:21 pm

Great recipe, Gar loves egg salad, and I am going to sneak that vinegar and lemon zest into the next batch.

My Uncle lived in High Level Alberta for years, and although we only went there once, it was breathtakingly beautiful. You live in a wonderful place also.


Michael Rawluk - August 11, 2009 - 11:47 pm

A photo-phood blog. I have to try your recipe.

John Maslowski - August 12, 2009 - 6:41 am

Lovely captures, especially the blue flowers. Beautiful as usual Diane. Have to give your recipe a try, thanks for the info.

Marcie - August 12, 2009 - 6:51 am

Your summer life in the ‘country’ sounds absolutely idyllic and beautiful. And -thanks for the recipe. Will give it a try!!!

Junie Moon - August 12, 2009 - 2:01 pm

I love the idea of “Peace Country” as it sounds like sanctuary. Your flower photos are gorgeous and a real celebration of where you live.

Thanks for sharing the recipe as I love egg salad. I’ve not made it in a long time. Your recipe sounds delicious.

Gayle - August 12, 2009 - 2:35 pm

What beautiful flowers. I can see why your area is known as Peace Country by your descriptions and photos. How long before you move back to the city?

Thank you for the egg salad recipe. It sounds great with the addition of your secret ingredient!

DesignTies - August 12, 2009 - 4:56 pm

I have lots of catching up to do here!!

I love your flower pictures — blue delphiniums are one of my favourites 🙂 And who cares if fireweed is a weed, the purple flowers are beautiful!!

You’re lucky to see so many hummingbirds where you live. I occasionally see one at the cottage, but it’s pretty rare. And I never see them here at home.

I sometimes make egg salad sandwiches for lunch — next time I do, I’ll try your recipe 🙂


Angela Fehr - August 12, 2009 - 9:42 pm

Love the delphiniums too – my blue one like that winter-killed last year…sigh. Hazards of living in the north, right?

Toni - August 12, 2009 - 10:12 pm

I’ll be taking a pass on that egg salad recipe, Diane, but your photos are great! The delphinium is beautiful, as is the fireweed, which is new for me. I’ve never been a fan of egg salad. =(

Roberta - August 13, 2009 - 9:30 am

Thanks for the link. The deer ate all my delphiniums this year, so I’m enjoying your photo of it. It’s the first time they’ve dined on it. I must ask about the Fireweeed in your garden. Did you plant it or did it just spring up naturally. I too love it, but don’t have it there naturally.

Teri - August 13, 2009 - 11:55 am

Hi Diane, I just spent some delightful time looking at your photos. They are so refreshing and fun to look at. Good work my friend.

Puna - August 13, 2009 - 1:55 pm

My goodness Diane. At the beginning I thought you were going to give us a recipe with the flowers in it!

Dave - August 13, 2009 - 2:19 pm

Great summer photos…..I have to agree about the low fat mayonnaise.