About Me

November 30, 2016

My Inspiration.

When I was young, the tv series "Little House on the Prairie" was launched on Sunday nights. I loved the show and couldn't wait for the next episode. Reading the books prior to the show, and then again during the run, this was always one of my favorites. You may wonder  if the name of my blog had any  relation to the books and the tv series and my response is Yes! The fact that we got to finally live out our dream of living in "our little house in the big woods" was the background inspiration to my title. Shopping the other day at Costco, I spotted these DVD's in the cute little house box. Not on my wish list but I couldn't resist taking a pic. We have so many series that we've acquired over the years and now with things like Netflix, buying DVD's isn't on the radar. But this little house box was cute and I couldn't resist taking it.

Were you a fan of the Little House books and show?
Do you have a favorite series from your childhood?


Last week, my friends and I spent time choosing
and wrapping gifts for families who would not
otherwise have Christmas if it wasn't for the
generosity of our community. These are the gifts
my partner and I wrapped together for one family
that consisted of a single mom and three kids. It
was so much fun choosing gifts for each of them.
I truly hope that we chose items that they will truly
enjoy. It was a small time for us but we each
were touched in different ways by this very
humbling experience. Next year, I'd like to be
able to deliver the gifts too but will need to figure
out first how to do that without crying upon
meeting the recipients. So very, very humbling.

Birthday Dinner.

Celebrating birthdays at this stage in
my life is not as exciting as when I
was a child. But I've learnt in the last
few years that it can still be a great day.

After a couple of harsh work days, it
was a lighter load today, with the end
of the day spent teaching a class at
the University. I love teaching adults
about life experiences, like grief and
loss. They eat up every word. So
empowering! And they always give
us the very loveliest gifts at the end.

Picked up our grand baby from school and
came home to find treats for dinner. A yummy
asian stir fry with my favorite cool drink, with
extra, extra lemonade, thank you very much!

Then it was time for cake. A scrumptious and light
whipped cake with chocolate covered strawberries.

Oooh, so good! My dh carefully picked the
strawberries off the cake so I could indulge
in these sweets. Guess what? I didn't share
either!! Only on this day, the day of my
birth, do I ever allow myself to be selfish.

It was a great day. I received so many FB
birthday wishes that I'm having a hard
time keeping up in thanking each poster.
Texts from special friends and family. And
some lovely calls, including a surprise
one from our Mayor. Had a great chat
with her and loved what she shared with
me ~ that's a story for another day. We
learned some much needed funding came
through for my centre, another fundraiser
yesterday netted more funds than we
had hoped for and new granting streams
that we thought had dried up years ago.
Much lighter and brighter day today.
This getting older is not so bad!! I
could live these special days more often.

Where is the Sun?

We've had weeks of fog and overcast
skies. Some rain, very little snow.

It's so gloomy. Not quite festive enough
to be Christmasy. Not quite Fall any more.

A bright spot this afternoon. We finished
our little gravel path to the front door. The
recycled tire Celtic designed stepping
stones are covered in the tiny bit of snow
we received over night. Love our little wavy
path. And now with the solar lights, there
is some brightness in these dark, foggy days.
Thankfully, it's supposed to be hot tomorrow!

November 29, 2016

Deal of the Day.

I love a good deal and today, found this sweet
chocolate bar at the grocery store. Originally it
was a $2 bar but today, on sale for a tiny .40 cents.
Clearing out the last bits of Halloween. Yum!

November 28, 2016

Tea Break.

I'm so lucky to have an extremely flexible
work schedule. After being home with our
children for more than 20 years, working a
9 to 5 schedule in one spot would have truly
driven me crazy! Thankfully, I was able to
negotiate both my contracts to suit our
family's lifestyle and for my own sanity. I
can work at our hospice, our centre, at home
or on the road, like in the cafe above. It 
gives me a lot of freedom to truly create our
programs and be present to my families. At
each location, a tea break is always in order.

My favorite tea is Chai but I'm starting to really
like Chamomile for the relaxing effect it has
on me. After a very stressful Summer, it was
a real tool for me each day. And so tasty too.

Do you have a flexible work schedule?
Do you have a favorite flavor of tea?

November 25, 2016

Simple Apple Pie.

 My lovey wanted desert the other night.
The only thing that we had that was sweet
was a bag of fresh, crips apples. So I dug
around in our pantry and came up with a pie.

Not just any pie of course. But pie just
like my gramma used to create for us.

Simple ingredients: pie crusts (yup!), brown
sugar, flour, butter, cinnamon and apples.

These Granny Smith apples were so tart so
I added in a couple of Mac's to even it out.

Found this apple corer at our charity shop for just $2. 
It was still in the box and is from Lee Valley!

Pie crust from our freezer. Not made by
me but we won't tell anyone, will we?!

Rolling out the dough to make the lattice top.
My first attempt and it worked out nicely.

Few extra pieces of dough ~ nice little flowers
to add some pizzaz to my little sweet pie.

In the oven, ready to bake. The aroma was amazing.
And my lovey was very impressed with my creativity.

Our Big Boy.

Home for a short visit in October, this was
our last day with him. He couldn't come for
Thanksgiving at the beginning of the month,
so we celebrated a couple of weeks later. A
film he was in was being shot in the big city
south of us, but he was able to sneak away
for one weekend out of the three weeks he
was in our province. Wish our visit could
have been a lot longer but so very thankful
for the time we were able to have together.

November 24, 2016

Foggy Days.

We have had the strangest weather all year
long. Last Winter we barely had any snow
and this is a region that normally is covered
for almost 6 months of the entire year.

But last year, very little snow. And then we had
a very wet and rainy Summer. So much rain that
some farmers had to declare their crops ruined. We 
couldn't get our grass in because it was just too wet.

Our Fall has also been very wet and extremely foggy.
Normally we don't get fog at all or very little amounts.

I took these shots from the top of a parkade in the
big city next door to us a couple of weeks ago.

I had presented a workshop to an another organization 
downtown and was leaving but stopped for these shots.

Amazing how thick it was. This is what it's been like
most days, well into November. Very little snow, it's
still raining and the fog continues to roll in. Today,
we had a bit of sun, which  melted the bits of snow.

Have you experienced "strange" or unusual weather?
Is fog something you receive lots in the Fall?


Wishing all my blogging buddies south
of the border a Happy Thanksgiving. I
send each of you blessings for a family
filled day and a bountiful year ahead.

November 20, 2016

Revisiting My List.

Last Sunday, I promised to do all the tasks below.
All were completed except the last two. It was
too muddy outside to put the wicker away but
it is now safely stored under the veranda for
the winter. And setting up the room for me to
paint took place on Thursday. A blog post will
soon follow to explain our busy week that took
me away from blogging and painting rooms.

* long shower to easy my achy body
* unload the dishwasher from last night
* gather the ingredients to make a pie
plant our spring bulbs in the warm earth
* send an email to a group I belong to
* create a scrumptious family dinner
set up the room that I will paint tomorrow
* put the wicker furniture in to storage

November 13, 2016

Sunny Sunday.

Finally, a sunny day! In keeping with our relaxed
Sunday routine, I've adopted the above list as my
"keeping me grounded on this sacred day" mantra.
But with the sun today, I have added a few tasks to
complete before the predicted dreaded snow arrives 
this week. I hope it doesn't make me a hypocrite.

Here's my task list for this beautiful sunny Sunday:

* long shower to easy my achy body
* unload the dishwasher from last night
* gather the ingredients to make a pie
* plant our spring bulbs in the warm earth
* send an email to a group I belong to
* create a scrumptious family dinner
* set up the room that I will paint tomorrow
* put the wicker furniture in to storage

All easy tasks and ones that will make this day flow 
smoothly and the week easier to manage with life
in order and tasks taken care of. The snow likely
won't last long as warmer days are predicted after.
But in our climate, being prepared is key to not
getting caught in a blizzard. We'll be ready for sure.

What are your grand plans for this Sunny Sunday?
Are you busy getting ready for this Winter?

November 11, 2016

No Words.

Over the last few days, I've read many, many blogs
The words that those of you affected in the U.S. by
the unbelievable change that shook the world on
the 9th describe such despair and helplessness. I
have tried to write several times, to find words that
would bring clarity or comfort, care and compassion.

But words elude me. How does one share thoughts
when it feels like life has spiraled out of control
for those south of our border? In the end, there is
truly nothing I can say that will make it all better.

All I can share is that all of you are in our minds, 
all of you are held in our hearts and all of you are
always welcome here. I have thrown my own fears
out to the Universe and hope that there are enough
sane people in this insane time to ensure that no
harm will come to any citizen and that our world
will find ways to combat the differences so that true
peace will reign over all of us. Fear won't win here.

We Remember ....

November 6, 2016

Now We Are Six.

Now We Are Six

When I was one,
I had just begun.

When I was two,
I was nearly new.

When I was three,
I was hardly me.

When I was four,
I was not much more.

When I was five,
I was just alive.

But now I am six,
I'm as clever as clever.

So I think I'll be six,
now and forever.

~ A. A. Milne ~

Six years ago tonight, our little guy arrived, safe and sound, with big cheeks and a full head of hair. Love at first sight, we've all been through many adventures over the last six years. He's so much fun, full of life and personality. Smart and sauve, he'll likely need to be locked up as a teenager, as the girls are going to be all over him! For now, we'll cherish his childhood and wish him health and luck as he continues to grow. Happy Birthday B!

Cozy Sunday.

Ah, Sunday! In keeping with our promise to each other that our Sundays would be at home and restful, our plans for today are very small. Just a few tasks to tackle. On our short list were the following:

* Put the Halloween decorations away, which will happen ~ a quick task as the bin is ready and we just need to take down the few hanging objects, fold them and place them in the bin, and then take the bin down to the little Christmas room storage space we have. 

* Take the organics bin down the lane to the garbage drop off spot for the truck to pick it up tomorrow, along with our blue bags of recyclables. 

* Put away the folded clean laundry that was completed yesterday but is still in the basket.

* Make a list of dinners for the week and any grocery items to pick up.

* Put the wicker furniture under the back porch, safe and out of the elements for the winter ~ it's dreary and over cast today but the next two weeks are supposed to be very warm and sunny, so I think we'll keep the wicker out while the weather is still beautiful and we can still enjoy sunsets on the front veranda. It's easy to tuck them away if the weather forecasts do change.

* Write some letters, read some blogs and write a blog post or two. Things I love to do but have to put on my list so I don't fill the list with other tasks that aren't timely or really critical. Learning to balance my lists with things that are needed to be done and things I want to do. 

I think I'll replace "put the wicker furniture under the back porch" with "curl up on the couch in front of the fireplace with dh while he watches the hockey game today and I can nap!" Not a bad compromise. I'm still comfy in bed but plan to get up in a while to have a warm bath then tackle our small list, get dinner ready for a slow cook today and start a new letter to a dear friend or two. Tomorrow I'm in town for a bit and meeting a friend for lunch. Today is our family day off together and tomorrow is my day off while everyone else is at work and school. 

How will you spend your day today?
Wishing you a warm and relaxing Sunday!

November 5, 2016

And now, the Treasures.

 We had a busy day and then, because
we were in the City, we rewarded our
hard work with a trip to the Antique
Mall. And found 3 small treasures.

An urn for flowers, a tiny pair of
leather doll shoes and a china plate.

This plate is from England and is part of the
J & G Meakin line. The markings on the back
suggest is was made sometime after 1912. It's
a thicker plate and just right for our house.

Teeny, tiny doll shoes. The clerk was
fascinated by their small size and asked
me what I'd do with them. I told him I
collect miniatures and he was intrigued.

A close up of the flower urn. I might
paint it to match another gardening
item I found the other day at our
charity shop. Will decide another day. 

Have you been thrift or antique shopping?
Have you found any great deals or treasures?

Treasure Hunting.

Our term for shopping at the Antique Mall or
at our local charity shop is "Treasure Hunting."

It's so much fun to peek through booths, moving items
aside so we can officially "hunt" down anything that
may compliment our new home or fill a wish. Look
what we spotted in one vendor's booth: Mrs. Beasley!
I forgot to check the tag but a quick look on eBay and
we discovered these dolls are worth around $200 now.
No worries .... we didn't buy it. No room and truly, I
never wanted one as a child. She's kind of spooky.

Love the bins full of vintage door knobs and hanging
brackets. And I LOVE this cabinet. But it's not for sale.

This dressing table was amazing and a cool $625. Love
the mirrors that can be positioned so the individual who
is dressing can see their outfit at different angles. The
final picture is my favorite booth ~ a sweet lady from
the U.K. Jane is the vendor and she always has lovely
items that I will often buy. Great prices and true antiques.

Do you like to Treasure Hunt in your community?
Do you find great items for your home or garden?

November 1, 2016

Our Mini Halloween.

When we were decorating our house for Halloween,
I came across some of the "minis" we've collected.

Sweet and spooky items for the season.

I love the pumpkin "guts" on the newspaper.

And the candied apple. So much detail has gone in
to this items. Can't wait to use them in the dollhouse.