Boundaries Are Your Responsibility
You Decide What Is & Isn't Allowed
In Your Life
... Brittany Moses
Which pairs very nicely with this piece of wisdom ...
Walls Keeps Everybody Out.
Boundaries Teach People Where
The Door Is.
... Mark Groves
These are my final finds for the 2020/2021 WPSH, which wraps up March 31st. Thank you so much Eileen for organizing & coming up with an interesting list that was doable in-spite of all the variations of lock downs we were experiencing.
My other finds were posted on December 21st, 2020 & February 02, 2021
#3 Peek Inside. I come down to this sight every morning. It seems one of the cats (I'm looking at your Smokey Puss), peeks inside the cupboard every night & pulls out a selection of things for closer inspection. That's a box of Ritz crackers on the floor.
#6 Horizontal. We have shutters on most of our windows & I enjoy the evening sunlight coming through the dining room shutters.
#11 Measures. Not very original or exciting, but since I had out for some baking, I thought, it's good enough.
#17 Comfort Food. Pizza & yes, my half with pineapple, Mr Man's half has sausage.
#19 Something Yellow. It's an Epi-pen, that I was required to have on hand when getting my flu shot in December. "Blue to the sky, orange to the thigh ..." is the rhyme when teaching you how to use. One end (the plunger) is blue the other end (the needle) is orange.
Alt C. Black & White. A lovely selection of some black & white papers. Nice that the paper is of the texture, that you can colour with alcohol markers, to jazz up the paper.
And now we wait for the SPSH to begin!
Good Morning. I am sharing a favourite, quick & simple coffee cake recipe. It's a perfect treat for Easter morning or just divine with afternoon tea. I hope you enjoy.
Cinnamon Swirl Coffee Cake
3/4 cup butter, room temperature
1 1/2 cups sugar (white granulated)
1 tsp vanilla
1 cup sour cream
2 1/2 cups all purpose flour
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 cup chopped walnuts (I used chopped almonds)
1 tbsp ground cinnamon
1/4 cup sugar (white granulated)
Preheat oven to 400 degrees F (205 degrees C). Grease a 10-inch bundt pan.
Combine flour, baking soda, and baking powder. Pour flour mixture into batter alternately with the sour cream, mixing until just incorporated. Fold in nuts, mixing just enough to evenly combine. Pour half the batter into the prepared pan.
My wisdom for today is more of a story of something that I think makes perfect sense, wisdom hiding in another form perhaps.
Walking through my son's school yard, I noticed a bench on the pavement with a large colourful circle painted around it. I asked my son if this was the only place to sit in the play yard. He said "no, that's the buddy bench, when someone feels lonely or has no one to play with, they sit there until someone asks them to come play." WOW, amazing I said. I asked him if he had ever used the bench?
He said, yes he had, when he was new to the school & didn't know anyone, then someone came & asked me to play. "It made me happy, & now when I see someone sitting there, I ask them to come play with me."
Do you know of any buddy benches in your kid's school yards?
Greetings one & all. I hope that this Monday, the first Monday of 2021's Spring, finds you all well & basking in happy weekend memories.
Currently Look Who's Back: Patio Pete!
Currently Admitting: to being wrong. Back on February 2nd, I saw my shadow & yet Wiarton Willie did not. February 2nd is Ground Hog Day aka Candlemas. Wiarton Willie is our groundhog weather forecaster. I said a late spring - I was wrong. Spring has sprung, early just as the rodent said it would. Mind you we are still "wearing" winter's remnants of dull brown, nothing green yet.
Currently Taking Two Steps Back: after reporting that my vertigo was improving, I had a few really difficult days last week, which seemed to be in the wrong direction. I do have a scheduled appointment for next week with the specialist. We had a bit of a phone interview & she gave me a few things she wanted me to do in the mean time, one is to greatly reduce or preferably eliminate computer screen time along with TV time. She wants to see if that helps with the migraines I've been having, which she feels is due to the type of vertigo I have. OK maybe, reduce greatly is doable ...
Currently Reading: A Fatal Lie by Charles Todd (Mother & Son writing duo), which I am really enjoying & just about to finish. I like mysteries & this one was/is very good at having me try to figure out the truth & which is the fatal lie. Ready to start is The Clay Girl by Heather Tucker. Heather is the SiL of one of the blogs writers I read, The AC Is On. Good Reads sums up The Clay Girl as "The Clay Girl is a beautiful tour de force that traces the story of a child, sculpted by kindness, cruelty and the extraordinary power of imagination, and her families — the one she’s born in to and the one she creates."
Currently Encouraged By: while wandering in the back garden to welcome Ms Spring on Saturday, I noticed with great excitement, that my surviving Hellebore has two flower buds on it. Sunday afternoon I took the winter protection hut off my Tree Peony & again a burst of excitement was heard throughout the neighbourhood, it has survived & it has several new leaf shoots on it. The hut is back on as later in the week snow is forecast. But never the less, welcome Ms Spring 2021 - you so far have my vote for Ms Congeniality ...
First up - the Hellebore flower buds:Next up - the leaf bud on my Tree Peony
“Spring unlocks the flowers to paint the laughing soil.”
Good Morning, I hope everyone is well.
Today I am reflecting on the last year, as last week was a time of many one year pandemic & COVID anniversaries.
What a year, is in no way a small statement.
Thank you all for being company over this last year. Thanks for sharing how you feel, thanks for book recommendations, thanks for inspiring with crafts & projects, thank you for sharing recipes - OMG to beer bread. Thanks for not hoarding toilet paper.
This is a longer read than normal. I understand if you skip but if you do read, thank you.
What I reminisce about is my experience & not necessarily the experience, feelings or thoughts of other Canadians, other Ontarians or other villagers. I know my emotions & thoughts over the last year have been at times, an out of control rollercoaster ride. While I did not purchase the ticket for this COVID ride, I have been strapped in like everyone else & sent around & around at neck breaking speed.
When I look back at 2020's Daytimer & Gratitude Journal, I see COVID reference entries in early January, especially with reference to my own "great sickness" of which I wrote about, seemingly quite a bit. The biggest notation changes came about early March & then a definite directional change on March 11th with The W.H.O. announced coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) aka COVID-19 as a world wide pandemic. On Friday March 13th, Ontario went into the first lockdown & borders started to close & it was a full moon! As I write this, the region I live in is in another lockdown, the third I believe, I've lost count, but unlikely to be the last.
Overnight, FaceBook, Twitter & Instagram had created experts in a new & developing virus/disease, while the medical & scientific sites were slower to come online. Out of this, the battle cry went up as Facts Nor Fear. F/B is now developing an ever growing number of vaccine experts. At first I did succumb to the fear & anxiety, although eventually I sifted out what online sites I trust to give scientific & medical facts & only check in with those 3-4 times a week. Too much endless information can lead to doom scrolling & anxiety.
Early in March every world leader, every political group had to decide how best to protect their people, their resources, their economy. Oh the economy! Some leaders have come out as heroes, some as villains. Although, in my opinion, when it comes down to it, the responsibility clearly lay at our own individual feet. Some kicked the sound medical advice aside, some trampled over it. Locally, I am surprised that the elected representatives have been fairly quiet & it's our county's Chief Medical Officer & assistant that have been most vocal. Probably a good thing.
Mr Man & I have been very observant of the rules & adhered to all lockdown rules. We take these measures as serious & Mr Man often quotes something from Star Trek's Mr Spock "the needs of the many out weigh the needs of the one" ... we stay home, we don't gather, we mask up & of course we wash our hands often. Curbside pick ups are the norm for us now. In the last year there have been very few, count on one hand, the number of in person shopping we have done. Even for Christmas shopping, it was online or do without.
And speaking of masks, I recorded the day in March when Mr Man & I first started wearing a mask when going out of the house. We have quite a wardrobe of masks now & wearing one of 3 layer cotton with filter, feels almost normal. We also have a face shield to wear with the mask if we feel that extra layer of protection is required. Not once did we question if our civil liabilities were in jeopardy. We see this as civil responsibility.
I still touch my face too much.
There are a few things I miss, such as freely wandering the library, attending in person church services, seeing friends for tea, giving & receiving hugs of hello & goodbye. I missed the ability to celebrate one of my friend's wedding - there was no opportunity for the wearing of a frothy dress while sipping & nibbling on a sunny patio. We could not gather to comfort when we lost a family member to COVID-19. At times it feels like a lot of sacrifice to life as we knew it. As many of you know, we are not part of a close family, & it's almost normal for us to go long periods of not connecting but I know for many of you that has been one of the greatest hardships of this pandemic, not being able to see your family as often & I feel for you.
We have learnt many lessons about ourselves during this last year. We found out just how much of a homebody we both are. We give thanks that we live in a house, with large yard & that we have remained good friends with the companionship of two wonderful cats. Our individual hobbies, have been sanity life savers; me with crafting & him with astronomy. We were both able to work from home; we learnt about Zoom for socializing, learning & working. I have been on an up & down journey about planning & preparing every meal we have eaten since March 2020. Right now I'm excited trying new to us recipes.
Through Zoom travel, we learnt lots about the world we live in, locally & on the grand scale. We have seen how resourceful some businesses & some people are; we learnt how resilient some are & are continually surprised at who isn't. We have seen great generosity, compassion & caring, but we have seen a lot of selfishness. We saw heroes rise from unlikely sources - I speak of many WWII seniors that rose brilliantly all over the world to inspire the younger generations. They knew sacrifice.
We have shared in the shame of discovering how horribly many of our seniors were being treated in Long Term Care (LTC) facilities & how badly many were managed. When the virus swept through these homes, so many died. When reading the daily stats of those lost, I tried to remember that these numbers aren't just a graph, but lives. People who are loved, active members of their families & communities, people who have given much, people who still had so much living to do. I hope we learn there is a better way to caring for our aged. On this front I hope there is no return to "normal".
We learnt which jobs were really necessary, which are usually the lowest paid jobs, such as our grocery store workers. We learnt how fortunate & blessed we are to live in a country with mostly good & free healthcare; we learnt that we need to revaluate who we hold up as true heroes, who the real influencers are. It is the nurses, doctors, first responders, PSWs, teachers, librarians . It's them we need, not the manufactured celebrities.
We learnt a whole bunch of new words & expressions: pandemic, COVIDIOT, flattening the curve, Coronacoaster, the wild ride of life I spoke of earlier, IFR (infection fatality rate), lockdown, spike T-cells, PCR Testing (polymerase chain reaction), curbside pick up, PPE ... I could go on & on.
In my own memory keeping, I refer to this Global Pandemic as The Great Pause & wonder what we will take forward with us. I am switching from "returning to normal" to the phrase "returning to the familiar" . But no matter what we call it, it's unlikely that any freeing of movement will take place until the majority of any & every population are vaccinated.
So, until I can roll up my sleeve for a vaccine, (probably summer time), I will continue to mask up, socially distance & go out only if necessary & give daily thanks for all my many blessings.
Let's all be an APOCALCOVIDOPTIMIST, A person who feels hopeful about life after COVID-19
Come On Monday - I'll Take You On
Currently Reading: I finished Anne Cleeves "The Darkest Evening". This is her latest Vera books & I quite enjoyed. I also just finished Louise Penny's "Kingdom of The Blind", another good read. And now I wait for several of my library requests to show up.
My library ladies know me so well that when I was picking up last week's book request, they included without my requesting, the spring issue of Creative Scrapbooker. It is so nice to be known.
Currently Watching: Belgravia. I had read the book & I quite like the TV adaptation. I think anything that has Harriet Walters in it is going to be good.
I haven't seen the interview Oprah did with Prince Harry & Meghan. Not sure I want to watch, but I taped so I have the option. Did you watch?
Currently Improving: ever so slightly on the vertigo. Dr's latest theory is that it is not just a case of vertigo, but quite possibly a blockage in my ear - he did an ear wash, nothing "moved" but the scan shows a fluid build up behind this blockage, more so in one ear over the other. So the long & short of it, I need to see an ear specialist, but because of COVID restrictions, it could be 2-3 months. Thankfully none of this is life threatening, just life annoying. I have a few home things to do & one is applying a heat pad several times a day to both ears before doing the vertigo exercises & then applying heat afterwards.
"When life gives you a Monday, dip it in glitter & let it sparkle all day"
Happy March 1st - Happy Saint David's Day. St David is the patron saint of Wales.
Lots to celebrate in March; of course we start with St David's Day, next up for us is the start of daylight saving time on the 14th, which is also National PI (TT) Day & then on the 17th is St Patrick's Day, patron saint of Ireland; the first day of spring to celebrate on March 20th. I have 8 family & friend birthdays to celebrate this month. Surely there must be a cake making event in all this hurrah !?
Currently Successful: Saturday's dinner was two thumbs. After the 2nd bite, Mr Man said, oh this is definitely a make again dinner. Other comments heard around the dinner table were; "this is restaurant quality", "OMG this is SOOOO good", "this is finger licking good" & "I feel quite satisfied by this". I made Ruth's Creamy Tomato & Chicken. You can find Ruth's recipe here: Creamy-roasted-tomato-and-chicken-pasta/ The only change I made was to cook the spinach with the onions & garlic at the beginning as we are not fans of "just wilted spinach". This was such a tasty dinner - thanks Ruth for sharing the recipe. I just hope with tonight's baked mac & cheese I get the same loving!
Currently Struggling: The ongoing vertigo is certainly continuing to play havoc with my day to day life. I've had a few days where I spent most of the day laying down as it was too much to even sit up. My doctor says to keep at it with the exercises, some people just have the inner ear crystals a little more stuck than others.
Currently Excited: I received a "free" gift from my online grocery chain (Zehrs) as a thank you for joining their membership "club". A package of gourmet dry pasta, a jar of gourmet Pesto sauce, a package of very large dinner (paper) napkins & a wood spoon. All useful gifts.In with this week's click & collect order there was a little Thank You package. In it a mini granola bar, two hard candies & a package of instant hot chocolate.
And now I'll leave you with this only too true, for me, quote ... "sometimes I shock myself with the smart things I say or do, other times I try to get out of the car with my seat belt still on."