Tuesday, September 21, 2010


Today I'm enjoying dandelion tea with fresh ginger shavings.

What a flavour treat! I have to say, the ginger is surprising me. I've never been fond of ginger in cooking, but really enjoyed the homemade ginger soda my son and I made back in August. I decided to add some to my tea this morning and it's so good.

Back to dandelions.

They can be used in such a variety of ways. For most places, they are not only local but very readily available in your own (pesticide-free!) yard. And they have amazing nutritional value: Calcium, Iron, Protein, Fibre, Vitamin A, Vitamin C, and more!

Go ahead, check it out!

Saturday, September 18, 2010

Better Than TV

Sometimes we just forget the awesomeness of what is around us. We fall into the rut of taking beauty for granted and pass it by with nary a glance while our brain becomes increasingly trained to classify it as "just normal" and thus not acknowledge its presence in the day-to-day.

With the beginning of the new school year and a new school, there have been a number of stressors each and every day in my son's life. And I have been house-bound since Thursday afternoon while my son has attempted different means of coping with the transition.

Today, I am very thankful for birds.

We have local crows, ravens, woodpeckers, sparrows, and other winged wonders visiting our yard on any given day. Today I tossed out some seed and, in return, had wonderful window pauses throughout the day.

I could have chosen to not toss out seed. I could have chosen to barely acknowledge the birds' presence, or to completely ignore it.

Instead, I purposefully took the time to consider it and encourage it and enjoy it.

Peace. Calm. Amusement. Wonder.

Monday, September 13, 2010

It's That Time of Year

Leaf-crunching. Mmmmmm

As the weather chills, chlorophyll starts to disappear from leaves and we see their true, gorgeous colours; definitely a feast for the eyes and soul.

Autumn is my absolute favourite season. The other seasons are favourites in their own rites for various reasons, but there is something about Autumn that just touches me somewhere deep.

I recognize that Autumn isn't everyone's favourite season, but autumn leaves offer one of life simplest pleasures.

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

It Just Feels Good

We've all heard about doing it. Many of us have even talked about doing it. And most of us have probably done it at least once.

Whether it was something akin to a macaroni angel, a drawing, or a pasta dinner, most of us have made something for someone at some point in our lives.

A friend pointed out today that there are 107 more days til Christmas. One of my daughter's friends has had "put up the Christmas tree" fever for a couple of weeks already.

Our family is having a consumerism-free Christmas this year. The initial conversation with my daughters was that we wouldn't exchange gifts, but rather just focus on spending the day together playing games and visiting and eating.

My son and I, however, have decided that we're going to make/repurpose gifts. We've been having a great time finding items/supplies at the thrift shop and figuring out what to make with them.

It's definitely a richer experience than shopping for gifts for everyone. There's the fun of creativity and letting that part of the brain freely explore possibilities. There's the enjoyment of doing of something creative together. There's the feel-good of doing less harm to our planet.

It just feels good.

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

I Used to be Cool

Another coolish morning, with just a breath of cloud cover.

It makes me think of early-morning swim classes when I was a little girl. Goosebumps and chattering teeth were eventually calmed by that wonderful feeling of being wrapped in a towel. I was reminded of that luxury when I slipped my arm into a sweater this morning.

It's amazing, really, that feeling of moving from cold to warm. It's interesting to consider all the different ways we have of doing so; hugs, sweaters, coats, shawls, blankets, wraps, fire, stovetop, and the list goes on and on...

Monday, September 6, 2010


Today there is a crispness in the air. It's not cold, and it's definitely not rainy as forecasted. There is a breeze gently nudging the branches of the evergreen outside my window. I've heard both crows and ravens, as well as one songbird I can't identify by sound. There is a quiet calm in the air.

As with almost every other day, I started my morning quietly listening and observing. Appreciating and taking in the calm. Breathing.

Thursday, September 2, 2010

Mashed Potatoes

Simple mashed potatoes.

They taste good. They smell good. They're pretty good in the mouth, and good in the belly. They're filling, accessible, affordable, and nutritious. And it's a base for a wonderful little treat known as potato candy, but that's another blog.

In addition to all the wonderful attributes of the simple potato, I am also grateful for the mashed potato. I am grateful to live in a place where nutritious food is so easily available. I am grateful that I am physically able to eat, something many people cannot take for granted.

I am grateful to live in a home where I am able to keep and cook food. I am grateful to have had a mother who taught me how to cook. I am grateful for my son, who loves to cook and is able to cook almost any sort of everyday meal. I am grateful for my neighbour who has received fairly large-ish quantities of vegetables twice this summer and has shared with me both times. Thanks to her, my freezer is full of vegetable concoctions that will be with us through the cooler weather. I am grateful that I have a blender.

I am grateful.

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Yes, Italian Parsley

I love the smell of herbs. It's such a simple and fulfilling pause....(more to follow)

There is an art to living

Today I learned that Courtney Milne has passed on. In that same instant, I learned that Courtney Milne had existed, and still does in the lives of those he has touched and will continue to touch.

I'd never heard of Courtney Milne prior to today. I'm not one for "if only" or "I wish" nor for regrets, but deep in my soul I so wanted to spend time together with him.

My personal hope is to meet more like Courtney Milne, those who breathe the same, and to continue to always see life through different eyes.



With all its other offerings, the evergreen is playful too
For in its branches come alive friendly dragons
and all manner of joyful and curious creatures
with just a hint of breeze

Sunday, August 29, 2010

Ryann's Bird

Ever since my oldest granddaughter was born last September, I've taken her to the living room window and talked about the birds whenever she comes to visit. Sometimes, we sit on my lounger and watch out the window accompanied by many long moments of silence. A couple of weeks ago was just such an occasion.

Ryann was sitting on my lap watching out the window. I could see that her little eyes were taking in each movement of an evergreen branch nodding in the breeze, a sparrow flitting into the bush at the side of the window, and folks walking by.

And then, as often happens, our local crow paid a visit and started his neighbourhood greetings. Ryann's eyes widened. She sat very still with her mouth open. She listened for a bit, and then - she called back! Three times! Then listened for a response...