Sunday 1 January 2017

Its about time . . .


 So here we are, a brand new page, year, day . . .  all clean and white and waiting for us to write upon it.  It is good to take down the old calendar and to hang something new upon the wall.   How bright and clean and fresh the new one looks.  It seems to symbolise the high hopes and expectations of this new  morning of this brand new year.

I have a thing for calendars.  When I was growing up every business gave one out to their customers.  The banks.  The milkman.  The local garage, etc.  My mother still has a couple hanging on the walls downstairs in her rumpus room.  (Love that word, but I can assure you there is no rumpusing going on in my mother's rumpus room.)  It has hung on her walls for years because it is pretty and made from bamboo, delicately printed/painted, like a chinese work of art.  Probably given to her from the House of Cheng eons ago, and kept because it was different.


 We are gifted each year with a lovely family calendar by my brother.  It is filled with family photos of every member of all of their extended family.  Todd and I, and my sister and her partner are in it, as are my mom and dad.  It is lovely because it has all of the holidays for three countries included and birthdates, anniversaries, etc.  It also has nice big squares that you can write things in.  I like that in a calendar.  Space to write things in.

As I flick through the crisp new pages of the months I am all too suddenly aware of the mystery of the coming months, which is both exciting and scary at the same time.  It is the same for each of us . . .  none of us knows what the coming days/months/year will hold.  Each clean page, with its neat rows of days, represents unlived time.  Time, the promise of seasons yet to come, days not yet granted . . .  days that are still God's secret.  Mysteries of the future waiting to unfold . . .

 I always treat myself to a Susan Branch Calendar.  Two in fact.  One to keep pristine and up in my craft room and the other down here to write upon.  In years past I have also treated myself to a desk blotter calendar of hers, but this year I couldn't afford it.  C'est la vie.   I still have the old one sitting upstairs on my desk and it still brings me pleasure.  Normally I have also gotten a Mary Englebreit one as well, the little desk one that has a plastic holder and you can rip off the pages daily.  But I have to be honest here . . . .  I saw a side of her after the recent election that I didn't like, and that wasn't in harmony with all that I thought that she was  . . .  and it kind of left a sad place in my heart.  I know we are all human and she is no different, but her calendars always have these cutsie, nice, inspirational sayings on them, and now it just seems like poppy cock to me and hypocritical . . .  because I feel like she isn't that person with the tolerant and cutsie inspirational heart.  Perhaps with time I will be able to get past it, but for now, no chair of bowlies for me.  

And of course I have the calendar I put together for me and my family and special friends.  But I don't think I could ever write on that one either.


 I always have this feeling at the beginning of every year that this will finally be my year.  And each year ends up being my year.  I suppose it is all about perspective and expectation . . .  growth.

In Sunday school this year we are studying the Book of Mormon again and I look forward to delving into it a little deeper and excited about the little gems of inspiration and wisdom I will glean from the lessons.   I am also very excited about the Gordon B Hinckley manual which we will be using in Relief Society for our second and third lessons every month.  Gordon B Hinckley was the prophet when I first joined the church and I can remember the great anticipation I had to listen to him speak at the April Conference that year prior to my Baptism.  I remember being so impressed with his wit and his wisdom.  Here was this man in his 90's who was vibrant and alive and interesting.  He won me over and I could tell from the beginning that he was a special man.  That feeling never changed with each year from then until his passing.  I think every convert has a special place in their heart for the prophet who was in place during the time of their conversion.  In any case, I look forward to learning more about him and from him over this next year.

Spiritual growth is never a bad thing.

This year too sees a special project which is simmering on the back burner, and which I will enlighten you about as soon as it is set in concrete and I am free to do so.

There will also be challenges, but with each challenge in life also comes an opportunity for great growth and so I expect this year will be no different.  Perspective . . . its all important.  We all have challenges to face.  Nobody is immune.   The difference comes in how you handle them.  Cup . . .  half full, or half empty.  I am a half full kind of girl.  Yes, I do have boo hoo moments, but I try to rise above them as quickly as I can, and look forward instead of backward.

So I am expecting this year to be a good year in every way.   Even the bad stuff can be good if I allow it to be good.  Its all up to me.


 Mitzie is still quite poorly.  We had her to the emergency Vet last night, which wasn't cheap, but worth it to know that it is nothing serious and we have some medicines to give her and hopefully she will soon be recovered.   Chances are she probably picked up something on one of her walks that she shouldn't have.  She is such a little greedy thing and if she finds food that someone has dropped she snuffles it right up and won't let go.  We need to work on that.  It was an expense we could have done without.  Thanks for your prayer and well wishes.  Also good news for my friend Kathy.  Her cancer has not spread so it was contained and that is a real answer to prayer.  So thank you so much for your prayers on that front also!  God is good!

A thought to carry with you through today or maybe even the year . . .

 My friend Valerie posts the nicest things on facebook.  I got this from her.


 In The English Kitchen today  . . .  A Lighter Green Bean Casserole.   Delicious. ☺

 Have a great first day to the year!  Don't forget  . . .

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And I do too!



  1. Good morning Marie. I am glad to hear that Mitzi has been to the vet and has some medicine. It is difficult to train a dog to not eat. I hope she is better soon.

    Yesterday we had a little family party and I ate my first festive fair. Because my tummy has been so bad I ate lightly. It was the wrong thing to do. I was so very ill over night. I think it was one of my worst nights ever. Please pray I am better. This afternoon I packed a few things. I had to make sure I had my doctor's letter etc.

    I love your story of calendar's. This year we have three. One has angels all over it. One was made by the nursing home and has every resident on it. I splurged and bought a Tilda calendar. To my joy and surprise it is made especially for the Australian market.

    God bless you all and I pray your first day of 2017 is far better than mine has been.

  2. I am so sorry to hear you are not well Suzan. Praying you recover for your trip. Mitzie is still very poorly. I am beside myself. Bloody diarreah. I am hoping and praying we can get her over it. £148 last night for the emergency vet. We have no money left to spend. As it is we took it out of our rent money and will have to make it up somehow. Pets are so distressing when they are ill. I am praying she will be soon on the road towards recovery. :-( We must give the medicines she was given last night a chance to work.

  3. I, too, am facing health issues - breast cancer and I would appreciate every prayer any one will say for me. My faith is strong and I have turned it over to God and have a peacefulness that only he can give but still would appreciate prayers please.

  4. It is all about time for sure ! We get the gift of a new day and it's up to us to make the very best of it! Happy New Year!

  5. Happy New Year, Marie. I have been a follower of "In The English Kitchen today" for quite some time, and just today found out about this blog! I really like your style of writing and look forward to reading along this year. On FB I post as Elaine Buckwalter Ritter. :)

  6. Oh Dee, I am so sorry to read this. You most certainly have mt prayers and I woul love to put you on our Temple Prayer Roll if that is okay. I firmly believe in the power of prayer. Faith precedes all miracles! Xoxo

    Happy New Year Pam! You are right. Every day IS a gift for sure! xoxo

  7. Hi Elaine! Welcome to my other home! Now you know about all of my guilty pleasures! Happy New Year! Xoxo

  8. Hello my dear Marie, on this the evening of the first day of 2017 .....I have no idea where 2016 went but when I got up this morning it was 2017 .....!! I had a most WONDERFUL Callander this year, I have been looking at various places to hang it and have finally decided......for the my bedroom so that it is the last thing I can smile at when I go to bed and first thing I see when I get up...( other than the photograph of my beloved Jacqueline I can hardly believe it is almost 9 years since that awful fateful day, tears still run when I think of it, like now !) .....however I'm off to bed soon so I will have a wee smile, it's such a lovely Callander.I have another that has gone up in the kitchen it is one Peter made with photographs from his holidays, mostly to Scotland this year....
    I am so sorry that Mitzie has not yet got better I pray that by tomorrow she will feel much better and there is no more need for vets visits, they are so expensive, I know we can get insurance but that is equally expensive and I hear that often they try to Find a way out of paying up......much love to you Todd and Mitzie may Gods love shine down on you each and every day of 2017. Xxxxx

  9. I am very late today..

    I hope Mitzi just gets better and better..what a worry!

    I had no idea re ME..I Googled..but what am I looking for?

    Already..I believe you:)

    Sleep tight as it is 11 PM where you rae..I am late to the party.

  10. Dee I will include you in my prayers.

  11. Sybil, it makes me happy that you are happy. Mitzie is much better thig morning thanks! First morning in a week I have not been greeted by dog sick and the other upon coming downstairs in the morning and my home finally smells not too bad! Happy New Year! xoxo

    Monique, it was on some of her Instagram posts. I was just really disappointed in her. I know it was a very divisive election, but I don't think she handled disappointment very well. Susan Branch handled it admirably I thought, and did a very sensitive blog post about it. In time I will come to not think such bad things I am sure, but for now I am still extremely disappointed. Love and hugs. xoxo


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