Wednesday 30 September 2015

As September slips off the calendar . . .

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It seems to me that the last day of September is a milestone  . . . it truly brings to my mind the fact that summer is gone.  Once today has passed . . . there will be no mistaking it . . . you can hang on to summer no more  . . .

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Like dry leaves that scatter in the wind . . . it's quite simply gone, like the Swallows  . . .  and the fieldfares and the redwings have arrived from more northern climes  . . . to grace us once more with their presence.

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Ladders still stand against trees in the orchard . . . . the pickers are still busy with the harvest, and the wind is full of leaves . . .  dancing and whirling about the laneways and streets,  the smell of woodsmoke in the air . . .

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Autumn has well and truly arrived . . . without the blowing of trumpets, or any fan fare at all, it is here, with it's blood moon high in the clear crisp night sky . . . a glowing moondog halo surrounds it, ice crystals in the cirrus . . .  winter is coming . . . she waits in the queue . . .

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but for now, we dance to the tune of an autumn wind, still tinged with the vestigial warmth of late summer days . . .  with crimson vine and fading rose . . .

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Mist covers the valleys and there is a sharp tang in the morning air confirming what has already been discovered . . . the golden days of autumn have arrived . . .

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My heart is inclined to say . . .  this is the best time of all . . .  this time of fruit and falling leaf . . .  blue smoke and pearly haze.   A time of peace and fulfillment.

Just my thoughts on this morning, the last of September, 2015 . . .

A thought to carry with you through today  . . .

 What is the meaning of life and of living.
The joy and the torment,
the taking, the giving . . . 
Love is the answer, the power and the glory.
Life without love is a meaningless story . . . 

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In the Kitchen today, a very autumnal side . . . Turnip and Carrot Dish.   So good.

I wish for you joy and peace and golden hours on this the last day of September.  Don't forget!

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And I do too!!

Tuesday 29 September 2015

The Simple Woman's Daybook . . .

FOR TODAY, September 29th, 2015 

Outside my window ...
It's totally daylight.  I am up ever so late this morning.  I had two nights in a row where I had a difficult time falling asleep and so it's been after one in the morning before I have slept at all.  It happens from time to time . . .

I am thinking ...
How hard it is to believe that we are at the end of September already!  I can't believe how fast the year is flying by!

I am thankful for ...
Modern technology and healthcare.  We should never take them for granted.

In the kitchen ...
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Pumpkin Pie Pudding.  I have been trying to create a recipe that would replace pumpkin pie for Thanksgiving.  While this is very tasty . . . it's not pie.

On my "To Cook" list ...
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These Chicken Tacos look really good.  I love tacos and I love chicken.  I think I would love Chicken Tacos.  From Simple Fare, Fairly Simple.

I am creating ...

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I did another painting yesterday.  This one is mostly water colour.   I quite like it.   I would like to sell it, so if anyone is interested in buying it at all, let me know.  It's larger than the others.  About 9 inches by 12 inches.  Here's your chance to own an original piece of my artwork.

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A free pattern for a Felt Christmas Ornament.  From Val Laird Designs.

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A hand sewn Chickadee Christmas Ornie from Squishy Cute Designs.  I love it!

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This is so cute.  From Noia Land.  It's a Spanish blog but has a translator.

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Deer and Fox Christmas Ornaments a free pattern from Cutesy Crafts.

I am reading ...
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My Sister's Secret, by Tracy Buchanan

This is the story of three sisters: Faith, Hope and Charity. They have a very close relationship and spend their days on the beach, dreaming about finding hidden submerged forests. It's also the story of Charity's daughter, Willow, who has inherited her mother's compulsion to dive and as a memorial to her parents sets out to visit the submerged forests on a map she finds in her Mum's belongings. The mysterious photographer, Niall Lane, seems to be visiting the same forests whilst exhibiting his Charity collection and it's only a matter of time before Willow bumps into him and uncovers some family secrets. I loved the gradual unfurling of the family secrets as Willow peels back layer after layer and uncovers secrets even her Aunt Hope knew nothing about. It's quite a sad story of childhood sweethearts who were really meant to be together but for unfortunate circumstances and underhand manipulation.

This is the first book I have read by this author and it won't be the last.

I am hoping ...
That I don't have to wait too long for my tests, and that I am okay with them when I do get to have them.  I mean not too nervous and stuff.   Although I am grateful for them, I don't relish the thought of swallowing a camera.  sigh . . . or the other.

Makes me smile ...

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Pretty girls all in a row.  My Sweet Imaginations.

I am learning ...
Trying to not be a front seat "back seat driver."  It's hard.  I bite my tongue.  But he can still tell.  I think men just drive differently than women.  'Nuff said.

Dreaming About ...
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Glass door knobs  . . .

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Secret Gardens . . .

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Pretty bed linens . . .

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Vintage teacups . . .

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Gingham ribbons  . . .

A favourite Quote for the day  ...

 `*.¸.*´Ƹ̵̡Ӝ̵̨̄Ʒ ¸.•´¸.•~♥♥♥~•.~
ღϠ₡ღ¸. ✻´´¯`✻.¸¸.Ƹ̴Ӂ̴Ʒ. (
¸.❀⁀⋱‿✿“`* .¸.*

For last year's words belong to last year's language,
and next year's words await another voice
And to make an end is to make a beginning.
~T.S. Elliot 

 One of my favourite things  ...

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Time pieces  . . .

A peek into my day ...

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Moon gazing  . . .  if you get up early enough, you can still do it.  Isn't it gorgeous?

And that's my daybook for this week.

 ⋱ ⋮ ⋰
⋯ ◯ ⋯ Take time to enjoy the small *´¯`.¸¸.☆
 ⋰ ⋮ ⋱ blessings in life.*´¯`.¸¸.☆

✿¸.•*¨`*•..¸✿ ✿¸.•*¨`*•..¸✿ ✿¸.•*¨`*•..¸✿
░░░░░░░░░░░░░ ░░░░░░░░░░░░░

Wherever you go and whatever you do, I hope there's a great day ahead of you! Don't forget!

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And I do too!!

Monday 28 September 2015

Small and Wonderful Things . . .

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"The world is fairly studded and strewn with pennies cast broadside from a generous hand. But who gets excited by a mere penny?...It is dire poverty indeed when a man is so malnourished and fatigued that he won't stoop to pick up a penny. But if you cultivate a healthy poverty and simplicity, so that finding a penny will literally make your day, then, since the world is in fact planted with pennies, you have with your poverty bought a lifetime of days. It is that simple. what you see is what you get." ~Anne Dillard

A few of the small and wonderful things which bring untold joy into my life. It's the small things in life which truly mean the most. Simple abundance . . . it's the best.

I thought it would be special this morning to remember some small and wonderfuls from my childhood.  I am betting that some of yours might be the same . . .

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An Ice Cold Nesbitts Orange, purchased with pennies saved and taken from one of those big coolers that had all the bottles hanging from metal bars over ice.  You had to slide the bottle along the bars and down to the end where, once you put your money in . . .  you could just pull the bottle out, pop the cap with the bottle opener and enjoy.  It had actual flecks of orange in it.  Nothing ever tasted as good as that.

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The excitement of the first snowfall of the year.   Only a few flakes at first, drifting down and falling on your cheeks and eyelashes . . . catching them on your tongue . . . followed by more and more falling,  and then even  more . . . until the ground started to be covered.  It was such a magic moment.  Rushing into the garage to see if your sled was still there from the year before, and thinking about all the good times ahead.

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The smell of a new box of crayons, and all the promise that they held.   Nothing brought me more joy than a new box of crayons.  We kept all of the old ones in an old cake tin and used them often, but nothing was more exciting than getting a new box . . .  especially if it came with a new colouring book.

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Cracker Jack.  The taste of it.  (Were there ever enough peanuts?  I don't think so!)  That prize in the bottom of the box.  The prizes used to be good things, small toys . . .  then they started only putting in little cardboard picture prizes.   Not as much fun.

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A rousing game of Tiddly Winks.

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Having a toy watch . . .  and how real it seemed.

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The funny way your knees felt in the spring when we put away our wool stockings and snow pants.  It was a special feeling, almost as good as getting into bed and then pulling your socks off, and the way the sheets feel on your feet.

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The excitement of Saturday Morning cartoons, especially when you magically were able to get some from the US via the air waves, which didn't happen very often.  They were grainy and in black and white and slipped in and out of the ether, but it didn't matter because they were American, and not something which we were normally able to see.

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Being invited to Birthday Parties and getting to dress up in your Sunday best on a day other than Sunday.  Playing games and having cake and ice cream.   These were not every day occurances and they felt really special.

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Getting a new package of Barrettes.

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The excitment that this catalogue brought into the house each year.   We were all scheduled time slots to look at it.   I think it's pages were pretty much worn out by the time Christmas actually rolled around.   Oh the dreams that it brought with it contained on it's pages . . . quite simply priceless.

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Marbles . . .  especially the pee wees.   These were like a pirates treasure.

Ohh . . .  I could go on and on, but I've run out of time.  So I will have to just leave you with a thought for today  . . .

Write in your heart
that every day
is the best day in 
the year.
~Ralph Waldo Emmerson.

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In The English Kitchen today, Chilli Bean Soup with an Avocado Salsa!  Tres delicious!

I hope your week gets off to a good start, and that the week ahead of you is filled with a ton of small and wonderful things  . . .  Don't forget!

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And I do too!!

Sunday 27 September 2015

What a Doll!

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I've always had a love affair with dolls, from the time I was a little girl.   I never had many dolls when I was a child.  I had a baby doll that my grandmother had bought me when I was very small, that some kid in the neighborhood pulled the head off of.   My mom taped it back on, but it wasn't the same.   I had a fashion doll that my Aunt Freda gave to me that I had been oggling through her bedroom door key hole for weeks and weeks.   I had a Little Miss Eaton Doll that I tied a string around her neck and tried to pretend she was a Chatty Cathy.  (Better than Chatty Cathy in my estimation because she had a far larger vocabulary!)  I had a Barbie that I saved up my pennies for and bought for myself and I had a fashion doll that I got for Christmas one year which had movable joints and which came with a bed and vanity set.

It sounds like a lot now that I have written them all down . . . but I wanted ever so many more.   I used to dream of owning Tressy dolls, and Christy dolls . . .  Chatty Cathys and the like.  That is probably why every year of my own girls childhood, Santa Claus brought them a new doll for Christmas.  I was living my doll love vicariously through them.

Even now I would like a new doll each year and I love making dolls too, as you know.   I have a whole pin board on Pinterest with nothing but dolls.   Of course the dolls I love now are a lot more expensive than the dolls I loved back then!

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This is a Fairy God Mother doll by the doll artist, Alexandra.   Isn't she beautiful?   I think she is.  I don't know how these doll artists do these fabulous creations.

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Here is another one of her beautiful dolls.   Isn't is just beautiful?   What a dream.

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This is a Tonner doll, complete with glass slipper.  Isn't she gorgeous.  I have always pictured Cinderella as a blonde (thanks Walt Disney) but I would love this anyways.

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Look at this Ballerina Barbie!  Isn't she beautiful.  I always wanted a Ballerina Doll when I was a child.  Didn't you?

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My Barbie was the original one with the black bubble "do"  . . . only because that was the only version they had left in the store when I went to buy her.   My parents had driven all the way to "Polo Park" in Winnipeg for me to find one, which was a considerable drive for them.  (My dad also had business to attend to in Winnipeg as well, so it wasn't just for the doll.)   My sister was given a blonde pony tail Barbie for Christmas a year or so after that I coveted.  You couldn't do much with my Barbie's hair . . .  it was pretty simple.   I also would have loved to have Ken, Midge and Skipper.  Oh how I longed to have  a Ken (with the fuzzy hair) for my Barbie to go out on dates with.   I had to make do with my brother's GI Joe.

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I would love LOVE to have one of those new Silkstone Barbies.  They are ever so much more sophisticated than the original.  Oh, how I would enjoy making clothes for her and dressing her up.  I guess you can grow up but the child in you lingers on.  One day I am going to have enough money to buy one . . .  when my ship comes in.

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My love affair with dolls doesn't begin and end with Barbie however.  I do so love character dolls as well, especially ones of children.    I believe the artist for this one is Nadia Knonova.   The Eastern Europeans are very talented when it comes to doll making.   I love the detail of this with her slippers, that expression on her face, the freckles . . .  those eyes.

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I adore these little painted dolls.   Oh how I long to be able to bring my little characters to life as dolls.   I wish I knew how to do this  . . . I don't know who these belong to.  I could not find a source, but are they not beautiful?

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Don't you just love this one by  Diane Adam.   It's just priceless I think . . .  that expression.  So beautiful.

I could go on and on about dolls.  It's probably a good thing that I am not wealthy because we would probably need a whole house just to hold my dolls.   Sigh . . . I guess it is a love I have never really grown out of . . .

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I worked on this painting yesterday afternoon.  The lettering took me probably a lot longer than anything else.  I am selling the original if anyone is interested.  If it wasn't for these little pictures that I do and sell every now and then, I don't know how Todd and I would manage.  It might not be a lot but it does help.  And if I don't sell them, well . . .  one day I hope they will be worth something.  It's the only inheritance my kids are going to get from me! haha

A thought to carry with you through today  . . .

Happiness is the art of never holding
in your mind
the memory of any 
unpleasant thing that has passed.

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I am sharing my Pumpkin Muffins Two Ways in The English Kitchen today.   One is sugar free.  Both are filled with flavour, fibre and goodness.

May you have a truly blessed Sabbath day.   Don't forget  . . .

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and I do too!!