Friday 13 August 2010

Lessons life has taught me . . .

Birthdays come and birthdays go
And with them comes the thought
Of all the happy memories
That passing years have brought.
And looking back across the years
We come to recognize
That it takes a lot of birthdays
To make us kind and wise,
For growing older only means
The spirit grows serene
And we behold things with our souls
That our eyes have never seen.
for each birthday is a gateway
That leads to a reward.
The rich reward of learning,
The true greatness of the Lord.
~Helen Steiner Rice

Yes, fifty five years ago today I made my way into the world, and I've been making my presence known and felt ever since!! (55 sounds so old, but inside I still feel like a 22 year old!) Did you know that in Nova Scotia where I come from 55 is actually considered a Senior Citizen?? I know!! Say it ain't so!! Although to be sure, it comes in mighty handy at Zellers on Senior's Discount Day . . . just ask my mom! A 10% saving is a 10% saving and not to be sniffed at!

I like to think that in 55 years I have learned a few things . . . some little tibits of wisdom that I'd like to share with you today.

1. Change is inevitable. It comes to each of us. The best we can do is to learn to roll with the punches, go with the flow and take advantage of the changes, using them as tools to help us to grow and to become better people.

2. Dwell in Possibility. This is a quote of Emily Dickenson, but it is such good advice. I take the view point that in this life anything is possible. You have to have a dream in order to have a dream come true! I never say never.

3. We're only here for a short time in the expanse of an eternity that stretches forever and forever. Have fun while you are here. Enjoy the ride with all of it's ups and downs. You will never pass this way again. Make the most of what you've been given.

4. Don't be afraid to move out of your comfort zone. Some of my best experiences and opportunities have come to me only after I have dared to lose!

5. Believe in yourself. If you can't believe in yourself, how ever can you expect other people to believe in you.

6. Never stop learning. Remain open to new things and new possibilities. You are never too old to take something new on board or to explore new avenues. Knowledge is strength. Knowledge is power.

7. Eat healthy, get enough sleep and plenty of exercise. This is a good rule to live by, although to be sure a treat once in a while is also healthy. Life is filled with compromise.

8. Live with integrity and honesty. Always.

9. Reaching out to others, and serving mankind has brought me some of my greatest joy in life. I firmly believe that you don't even begin to live your life until you can learn to give it away. If you can't help others . . . you can't help yourself.

10. Love is always right.

11. You only fail when you stop trying. Where you are does not determine where you will go.

12. We create our own limitations and horizons. Follow your passions and dreams. Never give up.

13. Focus on quality, not on quantity.

14. Words and thoughts are everything. What you say and think will eventually become your reality, so be positive. Can't is not a word that I embrace. If I think I can . . . I will.

15. Ask yourself, "What would Jesus do?" in every situation. If you do what you think He would do, then you just can't go wrong.

These are only some of the things that life has taught me, but I like to think that they are some of the more important things. Life continues to teach me every day. Sometimes the lessons are hard to learn, and other times quite easy . . . it's all a dance and I'm enjoying the dance as much as I can, and for as long as I can. Who could ask for anything more?

Many thanks to each of you for your best wishes, cards and Birthday Greetings! They truly do mean the world to me. I like to think that each of you are a gift I give to myself each and every day of my life . . . very special indeed!

I have an appointment at the Doctors this morning to find out the results of my scan. Wish me luck! Then at noon we are going to go and pick up Mitzie! I am very excited about that! This will be the last morning that I have to come downstairs to an empty living room. From this day onwards there will be a wagging tail and doggie kisses to greet me! Ain't life grand!!

Peanut Butter cookies have to be one of my absolute favourite kinds of cookies. Peanut butter anything is actually a favourite of mine. I know . . . I'm not hard to please!

*Peanut Butter Cookies*
Makes 4 1/2 to 5 dozen
Printable Recipe

The kid in me loves these. I have been making these for as long as I can remember. Nothing fancy here, just old fashioned peanut butter goodness. Bet you can't eat just one!

1/2 cup butter
1/2 cup packed soft light brown sugar
1/2 cup caster sugar
1 large free range egg
1/2 cup peanut butter (you can use crunchy if you want, bit I like smooth)
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp baking soda
1 cup plain flour (you may need more, I always do)
1/2 tsp vanilla

Preheat the oven to 180*C/350*F/ gas mark 4. Lightly grease several baking sheets. Set aside.

Put the butter into a large bowl and cream it really well with a wooden spoon. Once it is quite fluffy, beat in both the sugars gradually, beating until creamy. Mix in the egg, peanut butter, salt and baking soda, mixing them all in and blending them well. Stir in the vanilla and then finally the flour. Mix in enough flour so that the dough is not too sticky. You will need to be able to roll the mixture into balls with your hands. I find that I usually need about 1 ½ cups of flour at least.

Roll the dough into walnut sized balls (or drop with a teaspoon onto the baking sheet) Put each ball on the baking sheet, placing them at least 2 inches apart. Take a fork and dip it into some flour and lightly press each one flat. Bake for ten to twelve minutes. Remove from the baking sheet with a spatula to a wire rack to finish cooling. Repeat with the remaining dough until it is all used up.

Sometimes you can drop the balls of dough into a small dish of white sugar and roll them around to coat them before placing them onto the baking pan. They are really good done this way too.

Cooking in The English Kitchen today, Clare College Mush. Oh how very scrumdiddlyumptious!


  1. Those are great life lessons. Thanks for giving me this gift or your birthday.

  2. Wise words indeed. I remember being 20 and thinking 40 was positively ancient, now I am over 40 but am the happiest I have ever been. You look amazing for a 55 year old lady, I would have guessed you were mid 40's, you must be doing something right....any tips?

    Hoping you have a wonderful birthday. I am so excited that you get to pick up your puppy today.

  3. Happy Birthday to you, Happy Birthday to you, Happy Birthday dear Marie, Happy Birthday to you.

    Hope your birthday is as lovely as you are. Good luck with your results and with your new arrival! Love and hugs, Lucie x

  4. Happy Birthday Marie...again!!
    Hope all goes well with the results today but whatever they are, you'll still have Mitzie to look forward to!
    Have a wonderful day! ~~~Love, Pat x

  5. An adage I live by is "Know your limitations". That's not the same as saying "I can't". It's more like finding a different way to achieve things. If one road is blocked there's always another way.

    What sort of birthday cake is it?

  6. Happy Birthday! What an exciting day you are going to have bringing your new pup home. I'll be praying all goes well at the doctors. I hope you have the happiest day ever!

  7. ♪♫•*¨*•.¸¸♥HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO YOU¸.•*¨*•♫♪..♥ HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO YOU¸¸.•*¨*•♫♪♥ HAPPY BIRTHDAY DEAR MARIE!!!•*¨*•♫♪ *•.¸¸♥ HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO YOU¸.•*¨*•♫♪!

    We are all so blessed to have a wonderful woman of 55 young years with us!! You are one of our Father's most lovely creations! Have a blessed puppy loving, hubby treating, friend wishing birthday EVER!!

  8. Really enjoyed "finding" you - and to read your birthday post was most inspiring.

    These are excellent life lessons!

  9. Happy Birthday, Marie. May today be a happy and memorable one for you.
    I am more than 20 years older than you, but try as I may, I can't think what happened to my 50s and 60s. I can only conclude that time passes far more quickly as you get older, so savour it - as I know you will.
    Bunny x

  10. HAPPY BIRTHDAY!!!! hope your day is full of smiles and laughter!! 55 years ago today the world became a better place! :) i love you marie!

  11. HAPPY, HAPPY BIRTHDAY, dear Marie! Those are life lessons to treasure... thank you for sharing them with us. Wise words to live by. :o) Hope all goes well with your doc visit today. And best of all Mitzie--what a great birthday gift! Swamped here with the shop, but couldn't wait to stop by and wish you happy day! Hope you take the weekend to celebrate... Have fun getting to know Mitzie! LOVE YOU LOTS, birthday girl. ;o) ((BIG HUGS))

  12. Dear Marie I whish you a happy, happy Birthday my dear.
    Wonderful post and wissom words!! Dear I hope you have a really lovely Birthday with Todd, hugss and kisses special for your birtheday (LOL) xoxoxoxoxo gloria

  13. Yes! Today you finally get to bring Mitzie home! Oh how lucky she is to be love by you and Todd.
    Happy, Happy delicious birthday.
    While still in my fifties, I am a bit older than you. It still surprises me when some one will auntomatically offer me the senior citizen discount! Age is all in the mind!
    I am just delighted I get to celebrate another year of precious life and hope this year proves to be so wonderful for you and Todd.
    Enjoy a most wonderful day and good luck on your scan.
    Love, Beth

  14. HAPPY BIRTHDAY!!!!! Since I turned 59 this year I consider you to be "young" :) I also feel in my twenties and cannot believe how fast those years went by. Good luck with you appt. today. Can hardly wait to hear about Mitzie and see pictures.

  15. Happy Birthday dear friend.
    I hope that it has been a great day for you.
    I hope that you got good news at the doctors.
    I know that getting Mitzie has been great fun for both you and Todd.... and Mitzie.
    I love all the good advice you gave us on this post...especially # 15.

    I am going to stop and give you a call. Come on over to my blog to get some birthday love. Hugs and best wishes. Lura

  16. Happy birthday! PB cookies are one of my favorites too!

  17. Wishing you a very Happy Birthday ~ Have a wonderful day ~ Ally x

  18. Marie,

    Oh Happy Birthday, as the saying goes your only as old as you feel :) My birthday is Sunday- all the nice people were born in August :)I'm turning 28, but at times I totally forget what age I am, it is only a number. Best of luck with the doctor, hope all is good :)

    All things nice...

  19. I have been out all day today so this is teh first time I have had to read your wonderful outlook on life as usual wonderful words to live by. Now you will be sitting in teh kitchen with mayeb a wee dog on your lap with wee snuffels the one sund you will be loving to hear...hope that she is a good wee girl tonight and dosn't cry for her doggy much, she will be missing her I have no doubt, but your lap and Todds will be a great substitute,
    much Love for this special day,
    Sybil xx

  20. I have been out all day today so this is teh first time I have had to read your wonderful outlook on life as usual wonderful words to live by. Now you will be sitting in teh kitchen with mayeb a wee dog on your lap with wee snuffels the one sund you will be loving to hear...hope that she is a good wee girl tonight and dosn't cry for her doggy much, she will be missing her I have no doubt, but your lap and Todds will be a great substitute,
    much Love for this special day,
    Sybil xx

  21. Happy Birthday to my sweet friend Marie!

    Hope today has been wonderful in every way and that you've been spoiled rotten as you deserve to be!

    I can't stop looking at your adorable new pup's sweet little face on Facebook! What a cutie-pie!

    Enjoy your day, my friend...wish I could bring you a cake today...

    All my love sent your way...

    Love, Julie

  22. I always come to your blog when I need uplifting...thanks so much! And Happy Birthday! You are a very wise lady...and lovely too! xxx


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