Friday, April 29, 2011

Five on Friday

1.  I never really planned to do it - but when I woke up about 2:30 this morning, I decided to watch the Royal Wedding on TV.  And I'm so glad that I did!  It was spectacular but not overdone, romantic and just like every woman dreams a wedding will be, I think.  I loved Kate's reaction when she came through the doors onto the balcony - she was surprised to see so many people waiting for them.  I'm sure Lady Diana would have been so proud of her son and his new wife.

It will definitely be fun to watch William and Kate when they visit Canada this summer.

2.  I dug last year's parsnips out of the garden this week and they were delicious - sweet and crisp!  This was a bit of an experiment since I had read that leaving parsnips in the ground was a good way to preserve them over the winter.  I'll definitely be doing it again and it was a total bonus to have something fresh from the garden in April!

3.   Have you heard of or used this product?

It's a one time, made in Canada, natural made application for wood that is safe for planters.  We're going to try it.

4.  It was a good day for baking Ben Bread  today - the smell is divine :)

5.  This is the scene in our living room where 79 tomatoes have been transplanted and even more are waiting for bigger pots.

Thursday, April 28, 2011

Lists of 2011 - #17

Listography #17 - Jobs I Would Be Good At

1.  Book store owner

2.  Event coordinator

3.  Travel agent

4.  Cooking school instructor

5.  Chocolate taster :)

6.  Bed and breakfast owner (but I'd have to hire out the cleaning!)

7.  Fabric salesperson

8.  Promoter of children's clothes and toys

9.  Baker

10.  Editor / proofreader

11.  Scrapbooker and stamper

12.  Professional shopper

13.  Tour guide

14.  Kids camp director

15.   Cook book writer

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Movie Review

Some time ago our book club read "Water for Elephants" by Sara Gruen.  It's just been released as a movie starring Reese Witherspoon so tonight our group headed out to see it at cheap Tuesday movie night.  It was a great evening!!

When Jacob, a veterinary school student, is orphaned during the Depression, he jumps on a passing train and ends up with the circus.  He is given odd jobs, eventually ending up in charge of Rosie, a newly acquired elephant.  Right from the beginning, he is attracted to Marlena, the beautiful horse trainer and wife of the circus owner.  As time goes on, cruelty to animals and cruelty to people by the owner take their toll on everyone.  The close knit family of performers and workers look out for Jacob along the way.  

This movie is an excellent depiction of the book and was a wonderful watch.  There were some 'jump-out-of-your-seat" moments and Jacob's rapport with Rosie, especially when he discovers she understands Polish(what a surprise this was!), is amazing.  The depiction of a traveling circus from the 1930's, scenes of the train meandering along to the next town, and Reese Witherspoon as Marlena all add to the appeal of the movie.  Definitely a must-see, especially if you've read the book!

Monday, April 25, 2011

Gratitude Gifts - Easter Edition

In the suffering of Good Friday, the waiting of Saturday and the joy of Sunday, I follow my Saviour.   I thank Him, in awe, that He would die for my sins and I rejoice with Him that He lives forever.  Glorious news!

#2391 - #2411

- a house full of family and friends

- Easter hymns

- bright tulips, wide open

- chocolate eggs, melting in the sun

- conversations with friends

- bright sunshine

- 'no jacket' weather

- Christians witnessing together in our community

- help in the kitchen

- baked ham

- strawberry shortcake

- colored eggs

- seeing pussy willows on branches

- moments recorded in photographs

- our daughter-in-law and her wonderful parents

- egg hunts

- catching up by telephone

- healthy transplants

- imagining the joy that they felt when they saw He was alive

- that I live in the wonder of His grace every day

Simply Ten Good Things

Inspired by Amanda at SouleMama this morning, to just pause and reflect on how many good things surround me.  I'm looking at it as kind of a morning prelude to my gratitude gifts post.

1.  a house filled up with people we love

2.  ham bones simmering

3.  colored eggs nestled in Easter grass

4.  ball caps on little boy heads

5.  watching our children be aunts and uncles

6.  lovely little gifts from friends (thanks, S and L!)

7.  leftovers

8.  little girl twirly skirts (some even with matching rubber boots!)

9.  how she's really only one week old and already seems to have been in our family forever (I guess it's actually nine months and one week!)

10.  re-reading the Easter story this morning, quietly and without my mind racing

Sunday, April 24, 2011

Happy Easter!

Our home was full of loved ones,
our yard was bathed in sunshine, 
our table was heavy with food,
our grandchildren were busy collecting eggs,
our hearts rejoiced because He lives in us!!

Happy Easter!

Friday, April 22, 2011

Lists of 2011 - #16

Listography #16  - 10 Things I Want My Kids to Know

1.  God is always with you.

2.  He has a plan for your life - it's better than you or I can even imagine.

3.  I love you - to the moon and back - and am so very proud of you!

4.  Keep in touch with those you love.

5.  People all over the world are more alike than they are different - they have goals and dreams and want the best for their children.

6.  I am so thankful that God has found you the perfect mate.

7.  Manners matter.

8.  Read, read, read!

9.  Have fun preparing and eating food.

10.  Travel is the best way to enjoy the world and learn more.

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Wednesday, April 20, 2011


Leigh always inspires me with her scrapbook layouts and when I saw this, I knew right away that I wanted to use the design with a picture that had been on my desk for a long time.  I am so happy with what I created - thanks so much for the inspiration, Leigh!

This is a picture of Bob's mom (2nd from the right) and her sister and brother, all with their spouses.

Monday, April 18, 2011

Gratitude Gifts Today

We have been blessed in so many ways over the past few weeks.  Being able to hold a new little one and marvel at her tiny fingers,  strong neck, soft little sounds and all round perfection definitely reminds us that everything God creates is good.  We pray that Maëlle's life will be a reflection of God's love as He works in her.   It is so amazing to see the ways in which God is working in our lives and in those of our families.   It's been quite a week!

#2366 - #2391

- apple branches greening in the house

- apple blossoms forming in the house

- a new granddaughter to love

- safe labor for Naomi and delivery for Maëlle

- the love of a big sister

- Resurrection Buns

- games of dominoes

- more subbing

- excellent admin support

- a gorgeous new camera strap (thanks, H!)

- lunch in the fridge

- sun shining

- a message to contemplate as this holiest and hardest of weeks begins

- lunch with a good friend

- book club friends

- discussion and different points of view

- hearing about my favourite conference

- our income which means that we can participate in paying taxes and benefit from the resulting services

- fresh daffodils on the table

- joy shared as our friends and family hear of Maëlle's birth

- photos of our new granddaughter

- successful surgery for a friend

- anticipation of family gathering at Easter

- the reminder that He paid for all my sins

- the love that God has for me - such an amazing, all-encompassing love, no matter what I do

Sunday, April 17, 2011

She's Here!!

Our newest granddaughter, 
Maëlle (My-el) Marie, 
weighing 7 lbs. 5 ozs.,  
arrived on Friday, April 15!

She is just perfect!!  So very beautiful, a tiny bundle of God's goodness and love,  a joy to hold and cuddle.   Naomi and Maëlle are both fine, getting used to life with a newborn again.   If you are wondering where I am, chances are it's over at her house - holding her or playing with big sister, Meadow or big brother, Blake!   

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Lists of 2011 - #15

Listography #15 - Books I Could Read Over and Over

The key word in this title is "could" because I've really only read a few of these books more than once.  But I love all of them and if there were no other books to read on that deserted island, I would be thrilled to read these again!

1.  the Bible

2.  The Silver Chalice by Thomas Costain

3.  Pillars of the Earth by Ken Follett

4.  The Outlander series by Diana Gabaldon

5.  Children of the Earth series by Jean M. Auel

6.  Heidi

7.  Black Beauty

8.  any Harry Potter books by J. K. Rowling

9.  Winter Garden by Kristen Hannah

10.  any books that my grandchildren request!

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Sewing Links

My goal to sew something every week has taken a backseat to life these last 6 weeks.  Sigh - - -
But I have still been watching lots of other people sew and so I thought you might like to see a few amazing projects today.  These are definitely bookmarked for my future!

1.  Rachel at Stitched in Color is doing an amazing project called Bottled Rainbow.  I love how she's using scraps within colour families and doing it one block at a time.  I would need to collect alot more scraps to be able to do this.

(photo from Stitched in Color blog)

2. This beautiful Sweet Divinity Diamond Quilt by Amanda at The Quilted Fish is wonderful.  I love the angles and the white sashing.

3.  Colorful and bright flowers make Dahlia just perfect for spring, I think.    Sherri over at A Quilting Life does beautiful custom quilting - so intricate and original.

I love looking at fabric art - it's so beautiful and always makes me want to jump up and get sewing.  Thanks for looking!

Monday, April 11, 2011

Gratitude Gifts Today

Amidst a long day of travel, questions, waiting and watching, I am struck again by the myriad blessings He  places in my life.  And the thanks I have for His grace and His arms surrounding me, adds up to peace and quiet rest in Him.  For His ways are better than anything I can plan or imagine and I count on Him to see us through this time.

#2334 - #2366
- waking to thoughts of Him
- whispering a prayer of thanks for night rest and opportunities waiting
- birthday celebrated
- little voices singing over the phone line and in video to me
- little ones blowing candles out for me

- cards and messages
- finishing a week of subbing
- organized colleagues
- students with energy and smiles
- fresh watermelon
- oatmeal with bananas and walnuts
- sun shining bright
- no more snow on the path to the garden
- sharing in the celebration of 80 years
- a good health care system
- caring doctor
- spending the day with Naomi
- safe travels
- streams running full with water
- geese swimming in the creek
- seeds sprouting

- a dishwasher
- laundry soap
- naps
- prayer throughout the day
- hearing good news
- pictures shared (thanks, L!)
- plans for tomorrow
- chicken noodle soup
- journal with gratitudes written down
- trusting that His will shall be done
- leaving the worrying to Him

Friday, April 08, 2011

Another Year

- 365 days

- memories made

- photos taken

- smiles shared

- hugs given

- hugs received

- kisses planted

- dreams hatched

- work done

- books read

- nature enjoyed

- friendships nourished

- roads travelled

- posts written

- gratitudes recorded

- Word read

- blessings poured

- birthday comes

- I'm Blessed!

Thursday, April 07, 2011

Lists of 2011 - #14

Listography #14 - Things I Collect

1.  Thoughts of gratitude (inspired by Ann and her book)

2.  Photographs

3.  Old Country Roses china

4.  Favourite greeting cards that others have sent me

5.  An small original painting from each country that we have visited

6.  Scarves

7.  A few favourite books like Jean Auel's "The Earth's Children" series

8.  Cookbooks

Really I am not a true collector.  Rather, I have a few favourites here and there - treasured things that have been collected over time that make me very happy.

Wordless Wednesday

Sharing the trail on my first walk 
of the season at the lake

Wednesday, April 06, 2011

Right Now

Right Now, I am ...
moving towards bed after a day of subbing in grade one but I have to fold a load of laundry and finish my lunch first
appreciating the sunshine and warm temperatures of spring
planning to pull the tomato and cantaloupe plants that have sprouted out from under their plastic tents
falling behind on dishes and household tasks this week
anticipating the arrival of our sixth grandchild any day now
laughing at how absolutely soaking wet students can get outside at recess
feeling so thankful to have this week of subbing
enjoying a dessert dish full of Liberte' Mediterranean lemon yogurt - yummy, thick and smooth
remembering my friend's dad who passed away last week and how excited Helayna was when the little lamb sucked on her baby finger :)
hoping to get through tomorrow's lesson plans and student presentations on their home building projects

Thanks to Heather and Amanda Soule for this post idea and inspiration today!

Tuesday, April 05, 2011

Gratitude Gifts Today

Spring is trying hard to break through here and I am loving the sunshine, the melting banks, the puddles, and the warmer temperatures.  With the changes that come as the seasons move on, I see some differences in me too.   And I count those as gifts - the opened eyes to see, the ears to hear, and the heart to acknowledge that all the goodness in my life comes as a result of His love and sacrifice for me.  Wow!!  Grace abounds and the eucharisteo flows deeps and wide here!

#2297 - #2334

- messages written straight to my heart

- hearing the same message in Sunday lessons, Sunday sermon, small group Bible study and while reading during the week.  Strong messages indeed!

- clean spaces

- empty sink, full cupboard

- watching someone being surprised on a birthday

- lunch bag packed and ready to grab

- smooth mornings

- curiousity

(by all 3 of them!)

- excellent lesson plans left for me

- the concern of grade ones as their teacher says good-bye to her father who went Home

- how well they are trained and know the routines

- new books from the school library

- shining eyes

- great listeners

- reading picture books

- egg basket hanging in the chicken house

- new jacket

- finishing a kind thoughts book to give to this week's student

- them sharing their baby pictures

- sunshine

- plastic bags to put inside leaking boots

- a soft chair to sit in

- discussions around the table

- goals for the next year for our health advisory council

- support staff

- butter tart squares

- knowing that I can help a friend best by being in her classroom this week

- stick men drawn by little ones

- daffodils on the table

- a boy and a dog

- reminders of our son at that age

- a little book to record the gifts

- apple branches in the house

- resting in His plans

- not knowing what the plans are but trusting the One who made them

- knowing that hard times refine my character and grow my faith

- that He sent His son for me!!

Saturday, April 02, 2011


Cleaning -

- up the greenhouse

- out the deep freeze

- inside the garage

- under the bed

- off the low branches on the apple tree

 to welcome spring!!


Today I -

- finished reading a Kristin Hannah book

- was inspired by the latest issue of Creating Keepsakes magazine

- did 5 loads of laundry

- mended my jeans

- put away stamps and inkpads

- took the empty bottles to the bottle depot

- pocketed $20.65 for the bottle refund

- discussed mother-of-the groom dress shopping with my friend

- baked Banana Chocolate Chip and Carrot Coconut muffins

- delivered muffins to my friend's house

- discussed substitute teaching plans for next week

- received happy mail!  5 fabric charm packs from Robert Kaufman fabrics as part of a giveaway I won on the Sew, Mama, Sew blog - 257 5" pieces of solid color in 5 different lines - makes me want to start sewing!

- made Fettucini Alfredo for supper

- discussed Abraham and Sarah, heroes of the faith,  at our small group Bible study

- laughed

- ate a delicious lunch

- prayed that God will continue to fill my life with His grace

- was totally blessed!