Saturday 7 October 2023

All Things Nice . . .


Little towns are lovely places,
Cool wide streets and friendly faces,
Neighbors running in and out,
Women middle-aged and stout,
Grandma's with old silver hair,
Like a halo shining there.

In a little town it seems
Time for happiness and dreams,
Time to visit folks -- to grow
Into ways that people know.
Life all bound with tender strands
Woven by their friendly hands.

I like little towns, for here
People grow so close and dear,
Funerals, weddings, death and birth,
All the good and bad of earth,
Cloudy skies and days that shine
Shared like sacramental wine.
~Edna Jaques, Little Towns
Beside Still Waters, 1939

I love a small town.  I grew up on Armed Forces bases. They were not much different than little towns. Although there were not very many Grandma's about, everyone knew everyone else and there was a sense of community, even if it was fluid with new people moving in and out every year.  There was a summer migration as that is when most families got posted to other bases and new families moved in. 

We had all of our own community services . . .  shops, theatre, schools, churches, etc. In many ways we were like one big family, probably because we had no family, not living close to us at any rate. Our community became our family, and shared a special closeness that was unique in a community.  At least that is my perspective.


Squirrel Nutkin and his brother Twinkleberry. 
Beatrix Potter

 ‘One autumn when the nuts were ripe, and the leaves on the hazel bushes were golden and green—Nutkin and Twinkleberry and all the other little squirrels came out of the wood, and down to the edge of the lake. They made little rafts out of twigs, and they paddled away over the water to Owl Island to gather nuts. Each squirrel had a little sack and a large oar, and spread out his tail for a sail.’

My sister has red squirrels in her garden. When I was there the other day one was coming for nuts.  It was so fun to watch his journey from his nest to where my sister had the nuts and then back again. He had a whole route mapped out. Cindy tucked the nuts here and there in the maple tree and he came back again and again seeking them out and then carrying them back, up over the branches, and onto a bush, across a small expanse of lawn, etc. I call my sister the animal whisperer.  They seem to know that she means them no harm. All come to visit her and are quite comfortable in her presence. She is a kind person and they know it.


"Every leaf speaks bliss to me, fluttering
from the autumn tree."
~Emily Bronte

The leaves are really changing now and we are surrounded by brilliant colors on every side. The Maples are the prettiest and seem to change first, quickly being followed by the rest. There are not an awful lot on the ground yet, but we are expecting high winds and rain tonight so that will change I am sure.  I expect there to be a carpet of oranges and yellows, reds and umbers on the ground by tomorrow.


“Who has seen the wind? 
Neither you nor I 
but when the trees bow down their heads, 
the wind is passing by.”
 ~Christina Rossetti.

This is the season of the Hunter's moon, and  when it is full it casts a brilliance over the countryside that you could read by. (October 28th, just in time for Halloween.)  The light of it gives a glow to the trees. Once the leaves begin to fall, the moon gilds them.  Things that were once hidden behind a curtain of leaf now become visible as the trees let them go. 

I love the smell of fallen leaves. It is  rather musty odor. Occasionally you will catch the smell of blue woodsmoke containing the essence of leaf scent. It is a rare thing these days, but when I was a child most people burned their leaves.  It is a smell that I truly adore . . .  the smell of burning leaves. That and fresh picked apples.


Oh how I wish that I could afford to line my porch with pumpkins.  Their oranges and greens and yellows all piled together in a beautiful arrangement.  That would bring joy to my heart to see them there.  They charge a lot for a pumpkin and for gourds these days.  You pay by the pound pretty much. A large one can set you back a fair bit.

But they are such a cheerful site to behold.  I need to go to the Dollar store and pick up some autumn scarecrow stakes to plunge into the ground after I clear the garden out.  They also make me smile.

I had bought two bags of candy bars for Halloween, but they are not peanut free.  I am thinking now that they should have been. What do you think?  Do you make sure your Halloween treats are peanut free?


“The air is chill—the fields are bare—the wind 
Sighs mournfully among the withering boughs— 
The golden sun descends, and leaves behind
 A sky, cold, but most beautiful, that shows 
Upon its saffron breast, in calm repose, 
Cloudlets of every hue, through which is seen 
The waning moon—the night’s once worshipp’d Queen…”
 ~John Craig, “An October Evening,” c.1827

I have been watching the Documentary about David Beckham on Netflix.  I love Documentaries, especially ones about people. I just finished Episode 2. Apparently this series has knocked the latest Love is Blind series down in the top 10 list.  (Not surprised really.)  He seems a very nice man.  I am looking forward to watching the next two episodes.  I think they are both really good people.  They seem to have raised a good family as well, no small feat in today's world, especially when you are famous like that. None of their children seem to be badly behaved or a disgrace to them.  They all seem well grounded. 


I am really looking forward to Thanksgiving Dinner which we are having tomorrow at my sister's.  She is such a beautiful cook.  I am bringing the roast potatoes and the dessert. The best part will be us being together.  No Anthony this year.  Their car needs working on. Hopefully they will be able to come at Christmas, but we will see.

I always really missed Thanksgiving when I lived in the UK, and when we did celebrate it, we tended to do it in November as in the American one. We used to have the Missionaries over and as they were mostly American, we did November Thanksgiving.

The British don't really understand Thanksgiving. They don't really have a similar holiday, so Thanksgiving was never really the same.  Probably my favorite one was when we went to my friend Jan and her husband Glynn's.  That was a lovely meal, and it was nice to be able to spend the day in the company of someone who also "got" Thanksgiving.

I still remember my last Thanksgiving with all of my children. It was in 1999.  They were all home. None of them were married yet, but Anthony was dating Anne, and she was here in NS with him.  I think Bruce was only 11, almost 12.  My boys always vied for the crown of the "Mashed Potato King."  Trying to see who could eat the most mashed potatoes. I used to make a HUGE pot of them!  We always had a huge turkey and of course made tons of stuffing as that was everyone's favorite.  Lots of turkey and gravy and all the fixings and several pies for dessert.  It was a lovely time, but there was also an underlying thread of sadness to it as things were already falling apart in my marriage and it would not be long before we went our separate ways. 

But I do find great joy in remembering that Thanksgiving dinner. 

And with that I best leave you with a thought for the day. I am going shopping with Cindy this morning and need to be getting washed and dressed!

A thought to carry with you  . . . 

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

 *.˛.To know even one life
has breathed easier because
you have lived, this is•。★★ 。* 。
to have succeeded.•。★★ 。* 。
~Ralph Waldo Emerson•。★★ 。* 。
•。★★ 。* 。•。★★ 。* 。

In The English Kitchen today  . . .  Pumpkin Crisp.  Move over Pumpkin Pie, there's a new kid in town and it's kicking your butt!  This is delicious with a creamy spiced pumpkin custard base and a sweet buttery crisp nut filled topping.

I hope you have a beautiful weekend and to my Canadian friends a Happy Thanksgiving!  Whatever you get up to don't forget! 

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And I do too!    



  1. We love to watch the red squirrels too. It's another rainy day here. A day for inside jobs, and sorting out a new jigsaw puzzle to do. Small towns are lovely, lived in one in England. I did grow up in a small town here but unfortunately it grew and grew and grew after we left. Now I belong to a Facebook group and we all remember the good days growing up there. Have a wonderful weekend with your family. Happy Thanksgiving.

  2. Happy Thanksgiving Marie! Whatever day you get together with family and friends is a day to be grateful and make memories to keep in the heart♥️ Joy! xo, V

    1. Thanks so much V! I really appreciate you taking the time to comment! xoxo

  3. Happy Thanksgiving Marie! Have a most lovely day making more memories. xo, V

    1. Thanks very much V! Same to you and yours! xoxo

  4. Happy TG Marie et famille!It's finished our neverending summer:( Finished yesterday..Wind and rain and chill!!

    1. Thanks Monique. We are still enjoying a bit of sunshine, but who knows how long it will last. We are on borrowed time here! It has to end soon! xoxo


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