Thursday, 23 February 2017

My favourite things . . .


These are a few of my favourite things . . . maybe you like the same things too?

Run, run as fast as you can.  You can't catch me I'm the Gingerbread Man!  I love Gingerbread Men.  I have a killer recipe that I have never posted.  Must rectify that this year.  I loved the story when I was a child.  I had the Little Golden Book one, which reminds me of another one of my favourite things  . . .

Little Golden Books.  I loved/love them.  This was my favourite one.  I loved the story of Heidi.  I had it for a very long time.  There is a photograph of me napping with my father and I have it in my arms.

In fact here it is.  I think I was probably about 3 years old in this because we were still living in Germany.  This photograph is another one of my most cherished and favourite things.  I think I need to upload it to my family tree.

The film, "Meet Me In St Louis."  I love musicals and especially vintage/older musicals and if Judy Garland and Margaret O'Brien are in them, so much the better.  There is nothing nasty about them.  They are just nice, nice.  I don't find them corny at all.  I love them.  Old films.  The only ones I am not overly fond of are the Laurel and Hardy ones and The Three Stooges.

This image is from a fascinating book. Fictitious Dishes: An Album of Literature's Most Memorable Meals  by Dinah Freid.  A coffee table book which is filled with lovely little vignettes of meals from some of literatures most compelling novels.  This one is the cheese toast that Grandfather fed Heidi.  I love it.  These types of things and books fascinate me.

This is the one from Alice In Wonderland . . .  fabulous!

Outlander, I am still enjoying the re-runs.  I love this series.  I can't wait for the next one.  It is a classic.   I used to love romance novels when I was younger, especially time travel ones.  I suppose there must be a little part of me that would like to travel back in time.  However knowing my luck I would end up in a Workhouse, so maybe I will just stay where I am and count my present day blessings for what they are.  ☺

Being tucked up indoors all cosy and warm while a storm rages outside.  It's a miserable day out there today.  Blustery, windy, raining . . . I am grateful for my warm little house, my slippers and my fire.  And, Hot Chocolates will be in order at some point!

Swing Music from the 1930's and 40's.   Sometimes I think I was born too late, but then again, I would be a very old woman now if I hadn't been born when I was.  I do love the music of that era though.  I could listen to it for hours.  I also love the crooners  . . .  Bing, Frank . . .  Michael Buble.  Did you know that Bradly Walsh has just put out an album of that kind of music.  You can listen to the whole thing on YouTube.  I was listening to the whole thing yesterday afternoon as I worked. It was lovely. That man has many talents. I really like him. Love him in Law and Order.

Still pondering and thinking about this  . . .  I know.   If only I was younger, thinner . . .

Unicorns and dreams. “Do not worry if you have built your castles in the air. They are where they should be. Now put the foundations under them.” ~Henry David Thoreau  You have to have a dream to have a dream come true.

Speaking of dreams . . . I didn't want to wake up this  morning.  I was having a wonderful dream just prior to waking up.   I was with our Amanda, my youngest daughter,  and it was as if nothing was wrong.  There was no distance between us.   We were friends and all was well with the world.  Oh how I wish . . . we were close at one time.  I don't know what happened.   I wish I did so that I could fix it.  I miss her more than she knows, or probably even cares . . . I long so much to have a relationship with her.  It breaks my heart that I don't.  Dear daughter do you not sometimes think of me as I think of you.   I wish . . .  I would trade all of my talents and all that I have and all that I have achieved in life just to have that  . . .

If wishes were horses, beggars would ride  . . .  

I best get on with my day. 

A thought to carry with you  . . . 

.° * 。 • ˚ ˚ ˛ ˚ ˛ •
•。★★ 。* 。
° 。 ° ˛˚˛ * _Π_____*。*˚
˚ ˛ •˛•˚ */______/~\。˚ ˚ ˛
˚ ˛ •˛• ˚ | 田田 |門 ★

 *.˛.° ˛°. . 
˛*"If one advances confidently 
    in the direction of one's dreams, 
      and endeavors to live the life which one has imagined, 
           one will meet with a success unexpected in common hours.” 
              ~Henry David Thoreau    •。★★ 。* 。.° * 。 • ˚ ˚ ˛ ˚ ˛ • 

Baking in The English Kitchen today, a bit of nostalgia with Grape Nuts Bread.  I had not made this in a long time.  Am so glad that I did.

Have a wonderful Thursday.  Don't forget!

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 And I do too!


Wednesday, 22 February 2017

Wednesday words . . .

If . . .  I had my life to live over again, I'd try to make more mistakes next time.  All the best lessons so far in my life have been learned through making mistakes.  Some have been real doozers.  I'd not give any of those lessons up, not for anything, and I'd add a few more  . . .

sooner in life rather 
than later

I would know when to relax and when to limber up.  I'd get more exercise and I'd enjoy it.  I'd climb more mountains and swim more rivers.  I would do more walking and maybe even run a bit . . . maybe even a lot.  I'd be more of a hands-on athlete than an


I'd be a bit sillier than I've been on this trip . . . I'd laugh more . . . love more  . . . take some things less seriously, and others more seriously.  I'd walk on more beaches and kiss more lovers.  I'd be a bit more irresponsible about some things and a lot more responsible about others . . . I'd open more books and get a better education.   I'd not be in such a rush to do the things I did.  I'd take more time . . .  for everything

every decision 
every choice

I'd do more walking and looking, watch more sunsets and be awake for more sunrises.  I'd eat more ice cream and fewer salads . . . more fruit and fewer potato chips.  I'd eat more vegetables and less meat.  I'd be more balanced in everything and less full on . . . have more actual problems and fewer imaginary ones . . .  I'd throw more caution to the wind and I'd take a few more chances.

I'd believe more
and have more
faith in

You see  . . .  I have always been one of those people who lives hygenically and sensibly and sanely  . . .  day after day and hour after hour.  I've always been responsible, felt responsible, lived responsibly  . . . Oh, sure.   I have had my moments, but if I had it to do all over again . . .  I'd have more of them.  In fact, I'd try to have nothing else.  Just moments.  Day after day of moments, instead of always trying to live so many years ahead in the day.

I'd  just be more 

I have been one of those people who never go anywhere without a thermometer, a band-aid, a hot water bottle, a gargle, a raincoat, an aspirin and a parachute.  If I had it to do over, I'd go more places, meet more people, do more things and travel lighter than I have.  I'd lug a lot less baggage,

I'd ponder longer on the why not's?
than on the 

If I had my life to live over  . . .  I would ride on more carousels, and pick more daisies.    I'd do more fishin' instead of just a wishin'    The good thing is  . . .

 its never too late
to start

A thought to carry with you through today  . . . 

.° * 。 • ˚ ˚ ˛ ˚ ˛ •
•。★★ 。* 。
° 。 ° ˛˚˛ * _Π_____*。*˚
˚ ˛ •˛•˚ */______/~\。˚ ˚ ˛
˚ ˛ •˛• ˚ | 田田 |門 ★

 *.˛.° ˛°. . 
˛*Do what you have to do until
     you can do what you want to do.
          ~Oprah Winfrey    •。★★ 。* 。

Spiritual Enlightenment

 photo SAM_6365_zpsf28ec47e.jpg

Cooking in The English Kitchen today  . . .  Sticky Gammon Steaks.  Yum!

Have a superdy duperdy Wednesday.  Kiss a few frogs, eat a few cookies, have a nice walk and watch the sun set . . .  but don't forget . . .

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And I do too!

Tuesday, 21 February 2017

The Simple Woman's Daybook . . .

FOR TODAY, February 21, 2017 

Outside my window ...
Its cold and dark, but the sky is beginning to lighten to the East.   Already I am noticing a lengthening of the days.  The camelia bush is in bloom already.   A full month earlier than normal.   Daffodils are sprouting.  Methings tis much too soon, but  there are signs of spring everywhere.  I am loving it.

I am thinking ... 
A great deal of my childhood was spent in Nova Scotia.  One of the places I loved to visit was the Habitation in Port Royal.  This is the site of the French explorer Samuel de Champlain's original 'Habitation' in 1605, which is something we were taught in history in school.   Over the years I have gone there many times and each time I go home, even now, it is on my list of places to visit.  I have always had a sense of the familial that I cannot explain when I go there.  It has always been a place I felt a sense of Deja Vu as it were.  Never more so than the last time I went when there was a huge TeePee erected outside the fort and a Mi-kmaq woman was demonstrating Native North American life inside.  We were fascinated, totally fascinated, but then The Habitation has always fascinated me.   This past year I had my DNA done and found out that I do have Native North American Blood.  I always figured that it was from my father's side of the family.  My Aunt Freda always said that there was a story that we had Native North Americans on my mother's side of the family also.  Yesterday I was researching my family tree and I traced one line back to this man.

Meet Henri Membertou. Henri Membertou was the sakmow of the Mi'kmaq First Nations tribe situated near Port Royal, site of the first French settlement in Acadia, present-day Nova Scotia, where the Habitation is situated.   He was a great Chief of the Native people.  He would have traded there and dealt with the French there, etc.  Conversed with Champlain and Jacques Cartier.  Goosebumps went up my spine.  I checked and re-checked.  Now I know why I have always felt this odd feeling in going to the Habitation.  I am still processing  . . . his one wish when he was dying was that his children would all remain devout Christians.  In 2007 Canada issued a stamp to honor him.  I wish I had one of those.  I really do.

In the kitchen ...

Vegetable Chow Mein.  Fresh flavours, lots of veg, quick to make.   Healthy too!  There is no cloying sauce.  Its light and very tasty!

On my "To Cook" list ... 


Homamade Chicken Gyoza from Katie Cakes.  I love Chinese Dumplings and these look VERY good!

Good to know ...

Every little helps.  From Jane Travis.

I am creating ...

Would love to do something like this in our kitchen.  Love these colours.  From The Turquoise Home.

Needlefelting AND embroidery.  Two of my loves combined.  From This is Colossal.

A Cultivated Nest.  15 ways to re-purpose an old suitcase.  Love this.


 Papercrafting an Airmail Booklet.   Can you still buy airmail envelopes? I could not find the source, but I love this.

 LeeLee Knits.  Free chunky throw Pattern.

I am reading ...


 Abide With Me, by Elizabeth Strout.
Katherine is only five-years-old. Struck dumb with grief at her mother's death, it is down to her father, the heartbroken minister Tyler Caskey, to bring his daughter out of silence she has observed in the wake of the family's tragedy.

But Tyler Caskey is barely surviving himself. His cold, church-assigned home is colder still since Lauren's death, and he struggles to find the right words for his sermons; struggles to be a leader to his congregation when he himself is lost.

When Katherine's schoolteacher calls to discuss his daughter's anti-social behaviour, it sparks a chain of events that begins to tear down Tyler's defences. The small-town rumour-mill has much to make of Katherine's odd behaviour, and even more to say about Tyler's relationship with his housekeeper, Connie Hatch. And in Tyler's darkest hour, a startling discovery will test his congregation's humanity - and his own will to endure the kinds of trials that sooner or later test us all.

From the Orange Prize-shortlisted author of Amy & Isabelle, this is a startlingly beautiful novel about love and abandonment, faith and hypocrisy; and the peril of family secrets…

I have only just started this.  I enjoyed Olive Kitteridge and so far I am enjoying this.

I am looking forward to ...
Getting stuck into my writing today.  I am loving the experience.  Really loving it.

Dreaming about ...

A weekend getaway to Copenhagen, once Todd is finished all his treatments, our company has finished visiting and Todd is feeling better.  We would love to go to Copenhagen


Pretty Garden Sheds  . . .  you know what it is, I always wanted a Wendy House.  I still want a Wendy House.


The pansies in bloom  . . .  soon  . . .   I love pansies . . .  and sweet peas.

Pristine and Streamlined  . . . simplicity . . . 


 A long hot soak  . . .  its been a while . . . we only have a shower now, which I love, but sometimes, you just want a long hot soak . . .  with candles and a good book.

Something to watch ... 


Birdman.   2014 Best Picture Oscar Winning film. Illustrated upon the progress of his latest Broadway play, a former popular actor's struggle to cope with his current life as a wasted actor.

A favourite quote for the day ...
 `*.¸.*´Ƹ̵̡Ӝ̵̨̄Ʒ ¸. •´¸.•~♥♥♥~•. ~ ღϠ₡ღ¸. ✻´´¯`✻.¸¸.Ƹ̴Ӂ̴Ʒ.
              ( ¸. ❀⁀ ⋱‿✿“` * .¸.* ✻ღϠ₡ ღ¸.✻´´¯`✻.¸¸.Ƹ̴Ӂ̴Ʒ..
For it was not into my ear you whispered,
              but into my heart,
                   it was not my lips you kissed,
                      but my soul.
                         ~Jane Eyre 

Makes me smile ...


Laughing babies always make me smile.  Look at those dimples.  Funny how if you are a baby and are bald and have  no teeth, are chubby, etc.  you are cute.  But as an adult if you are those things you are not cute.   

One of my favourite things ... 


Red and white anything and everything.  When we worked at the Manor, their Guest house had a red and white gingham sofa I coveted.  Yes, I know  . . .  coveting is a sin.

Corners of my Kingdom ...

The Cavern Club, Liverpool.  Where the Beatles got their start.  Remember when I went there?   A friend of mine used to go there on her school lunch hour breaks.  I want to take Lura and John there.

And that's my daybook for this week!

  ⋱ ⋮ ⋰
⋯ ◯ ⋯ Take time to enjoy the small *´¯`.¸¸.☆
  ⋰ ⋮ ⋱ blessings in life.*´¯`.¸¸.☆

✿¸.•*¨`*•..¸✿ ✿¸.•*¨`*•..¸✿ ✿¸.•*¨`*•..¸✿
░░░░░░░░░░░░░ ░░░░░░░░░░░░░

Wherever you go and whatever you do, I hope there's a great day ahead of you! Don't forget!

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 And I do too!

Monday, 20 February 2017

Small and Wonderful things . . .


"The world is fairly studded and strewn with pennies cast broadside from a generous hand. But who gets excited by a mere penny?...It is dire poverty indeed when a man is so malnourished and fatigued that he won't stoop to pick up a penny. But if you cultivate a healthy poverty and simplicity, so that finding a penny will literally make your day, then, since the world is in fact planted with pennies, you have with your poverty bought a lifetime of days. It is that simple. what you see is what you get." ~Anne Dillard

A few of the small and wonderful things which bring untold joy into my life. It's the small things in life which truly mean the most. Simple abundance . . . it's the best.

Impromptu visits and getting together with friends.   We had several impromptu visits last week that really cheered us up and spending time with friends always cheer our hearts.  Although none of it was planned, that didn't matter.   I welcomed the breaks and the company.  Time spent with people you love is never wasted.  No matter what you get up to.

“We need to build and strengthen one another. 
We must never lose sight of the fact that we are to 
"succor the weak, 
lift up the hands which hang down, 
and strengthen the feeble knees." 
~Gordon B Hinckley

Getting stuck into a good book.  After having gone through a barren desert as far as my reading goes, I suddenly find myself getting stuck into not one, not two . . .  but three good books.   I am reading Susan Branch's "Martha's Vineyard, Isle of Dreams" again for the third time (always a charmer), The Continuous Atonement by Brad Wilcox (I cry on every page), and Abide With Me, by Elizabeth Stout.  You cannot beat the company of a good book.

“Good books are as friends, 
willing to give to us if we are willing to make a little effort.” 
~Gordon B Hinckley

Loving and being loved.  It is nice to be with someone who really loves me and who I really love.  Elderly love is not the same as young love.  Well, I guess it is in some ways, but then it is completely different and better in others.  Love is great full stop.  Everyone needs to feel loved and to love back. 

“Love is the very essence of life. It is the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow. Yet it is not found only at the end of the rainbow. Love is at the beginning also, and from it springs the beauty that arched across the sky on a stormy day. Love is the security for which children weep, the yearning of youth, the adhesive that binds marriage, and the lubricant that prevents devastating friction in the home; it is the peace of old age, the sunlight of hope shining through death. How rich are those who enjoy it in their associations with family, friends, and neighbors! Love, like faith, is a gift of God. It is also the most enduring and most powerful virtue.” 
~Gordon B Hinckley


Being able to let your hair down and just let go every now and then.  Dance like nobody is watching.  Sing like nobody is listening.  Laugh, cry and everything in between.  Having space and time to just be . . .  whatever it is you feel like being, and do whatever it is you feel like doing, with abandon!

"Through all of living,
have much joy and laughter.
Life is to be enjoyed,
not just endured."
~Gordon B Hinckley

Having someone in your life who makes you feel beautiful, inside and out.

“There are four pillars to a happy marriage: 
respect one another as individuals;
 (give) soft answers; (practice)financial honesty; 
(conduct) family prayer.” 
~Gordon B Hinckley

Gentle exercise.   Yoga.  Tai Chi.  Stretching what needs to be stretched and limbering up what needs to be limbered up.  Its a good thing.

"You cannot plough a field
simply by turning it over in your mind."
~Gordon B Hinckley

Inspiring others and being inspired by others.   Having a "Can Do" attitude.  (Or should I have said "Cattitude?")  Sorry, couldn't resist.

“Being humble means recognizing 
that we are not on earth to see how important we can become, 
but to see how much difference 
we can make in the lives of others” 
~Gordon B Hinckley

Having a smile on your face and a song in your heart.  Being able to smile and help others to smile.  Just being happy.  I love all of these things.   It has always made me happy to be able to help make others feel happy, to bring joy to others.

“Go forward in life with 
a twinkle in your eye and a smile on your face, 
but with great purpose in heart.”
 ~Gordon B Hinkley

Getting a good night's sleep.  Oh, it feels so good.  And . . .  pink.   I love pink paws, noses, etc.  Sigh . . .

"Look for sunlight
through the clouds."
~Gordon B Hinckley 

Knowing I am not alone and will never be alone.  That knowledge can never be under-estimated.

“Let us never forget to pray. God lives. He is near.
 He is real. He is not only aware of us but cares for us. 
He is our Father. He is accessible to all who will seek Him.”
 ~Gordon B Hinckley 

 And Finally

“Let us be happy people.
 The Lord's plan is a plan of happiness. 
The way will be lighter, the worries will be fewer, 
the confrontations will be less difficult
 if we cultivate a spirit of happiness.” 
~Gordon B Hinckley  


Cooking in The English Kitchen today  . . .  Turkey Hash.  It's quite simply divine.

Have a wonderful Monday.  I hope your week ahead is filled with a multitude of small and wonderful things.  Along the way never forget . . .

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And I do too!