Sunday, December 28, 2008

Soup and pie day

It's the kind of day where some chose to stay in pajamas all day, curled up on the couch under two quilts reading or watching a moose wander down main street. It's the kind of day to make turkey soup, simmering away all day while you do crafts or watch the colour of the sky change from blue and white to pink and orange. It's the kind of day to quietly try to make a surprise apple pie to make someone feel better. Well, at least the feel better part worked.

Thursday, December 25, 2008


The snowfall has muffled all sounds, it's almost as if there is no one out there. Inside it is quiet also, just the constant hum of the heater. We light as many candles as we can find, one for each of our loved ones who are no longer with us, the biggest candle for our most recent loss. And because of that this year we did not send out cards, put up a tree or buy presents. The front door is bare, no twinkling lights or beribboned wreath. We each bring to mind special memories and let them warm us, these are the gifts that we cannot live without.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Best cookies ever

It is not a good idea to have these cookies around the house. They are full of butter and chocolate chips and some other stuff that makes them crunchy. I made a few dozen tonight to gift them to my brother-in-law, he has always loved my chocolate chip cookies. That is the only reason I made these cookies. We did do a taste test to make sure that they taste as good as they look.

Monday, December 15, 2008

Soup day

The sun and an icy blue sky were a welcoming sight this morning, a crisp,calm morning that makes you want to venture out. The crunch of snowboots on ice. No birds flitting about the trees. The snow cover like thick quilt batting on my dome-shaped lavender plants. The mountains all around frosted with new snow. It is so cold that the cedar hedge has turned a black green colour.
The only thing to do on such a cold day after venturing out is to make soup. With the last of the oddly shaped potatoes from the ranch, I made a pot of very thick spud puree.

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Pancake Sunday

We did not use a recipe, the special pan was square, and the pancakes were as big as a plate stacked two or three high, swimming in maple syrup with a fried egg in between.
I still enjoy making pancakes on Sundays but now I have a pancake recipe collection. I use a round cast iron griddle, the pancakes are much smaller, and fruit is our choice of topping. This is definitely my comfort food.

Friday, December 12, 2008

Sick day

I'm home sick (just a head cold) so in between the naps and juice breaks, I managed to have a nice long-distance chat with my Mom, clean up my african violets, put the new Christmas photos on the fridge, journal, flip through my new magazines, read Christmas cards, watched the snow falling, tackled the books on my nightstand , and made a birthday card for my dear friend.

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Going downtown has always been an occasion for me and tonight was no different. Maura and I went out for Greek and just two doors down is our favourite bookstore. This bookstore has piles and piles and shelves of books everywhere you look. We never leave this store empty handed. Yes, I did find three books to add to my collection; two by a local author who was giving a reading at the library and one by Mary Engelbreit. But as excited as I was about my books, what really caught my eye this evening were all the little footstools and benches strategically placed around the bookshop.

Sunday, December 7, 2008

Only once a year?

They are always there if we care to "see". They are always there if we take the time to look down the alley as we hurry by. They are always there under the overpass as we drive along. But once a year we feel generous (guilty) and donate to the many charities setup to help those whose lives have not turned out as they hoped. Once a year we share our abundance, writing cheques, filling food bank boxes, and emptying our pockets of change at the sound of the bells on every street corner. Once a year we give, and we give big in the hopes that by doing so it will wipe out the fact that the rest of the year we ignore those around us who need our help, every day not just once a year.

Saturday, November 29, 2008

Serene weaving

As soon as I saw them I knew that they would be perfect for what I had in mind. As I picked them up and held them up to the light, I could envision the bolster pillow.The off-white colour, the tan pattern on one side, the knubby feel of the yarns -- almost as if I had placed a custom-order. And to top it all off, these two pieces were woven by my very talented and good friend, Audrey.

Thursday, November 27, 2008

It is in giving that we receive

Today was the day of our annual charity auction and bake sale. The purpose of this event is to help others, our fellow men and women or our four-legged friends. I wish we could bottle the good feelings that emanate from this day. People smile more, you hear more laughter, and an extra effort is made to keep the work day enjoyable. We have a mission and everyone does their bit. There is a common goal and even though it may seem like a lot of work to organize this event, knowing that many people will benefit from our small contribution makes it all worth while. There is a feeling of community spirit, good will, and love for all no matter what their station in life.
I am hoping that tomorrow I will remember those feelings.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Acorn memories

Acorns have a special place in my heart so you can imagine the memories that flashed through my mind when I found these two acorn caps and a note on my desk at work the other day.
I was seven, visiting my Nonni in Italy, and to keep me busy I was given a pail and told to collect acorns which were fed to the pig. I just have to look at an acorn and I am seven once more. I have my pail as I run down the steps, past the fountain, and cross the road. I remember the swirling fog, I remember the huge oak tree, and I remember the sound the acorns made as I filled the pail.
Acorns have a special place in my heart and so does the person who left these two acorn caps on my desk. Thank you.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Lost and found

So happy to have my camera back and working like new again thanks to Dani and Nathan. And what a surprise to find pictures that I had taken when I went to the coast, pictures I thought I had lost forever when I dropped my camera.

Maillardville-where I bought my very first pottery bowl. It has survived being boxed and moved many times and we still use it to this day.

Love walking along the ocean.

Whenever we cross the bridge, I always take a
picture of this tree.

Can you see the horse?


On the island, a famous relic from my hometown.

This was the last picture I took on the island just before I dropped my camera. Yes, I'm glad I did.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008


What is the best part of a weekend away? Coming back home to a wonderful meal and a glass of wine, sitting around the table sharing stories and showing off our great finds.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Northern weekend

  1. The bus hit a deer.
  2. Mom and I made cookies.
  3. Had the best gnocchi ever.
  4. Visited our favourite bakery.
  5. Bought shoes, fabric, CDs, and earrings.
  6. Watched 37 cooking shows.
  7. Took Blackie for a walk.
  8. Did some sewing.
  9. Two bouquets to the cemetary.
  10. Went out for Greek.
  11. Quick trip to New Zealand.
  12. Almost converted by a cute dog at the bus depot.

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Special buttons

It is almost a year ago to the day that I was approached by a woman at a craft fair; she had noticed my button boxes and asked if I would like more buttons. She had her mother's button collection and would consider selling it to me. I gave her my card and waited for her call.
And she did call, just the other day.
But when we met so that I could have a look at the collection, something happened during the handing over of the bag of buttons. She gently hands me the bag and tells me that she would like me to have them. She does not want anything for them. But as I thank her profusely, her eyes well up and she walks away.
This button collection may not be valuable, mostly plastic or metal, a few mother-of-pearl, but it is a special button collection; I saw the look in her eyes.