Tuesday, 31 December 2019

The Simple Woman's Daybook . . .

FOR TODAY, December 31, 2019

Outside my window ... 
Its dark and dry and very quiet. 
I am thinking ...
Its hard to believe that this is my last post of the year, last post of the decade. Time has just flown.  Also, everything seems to be working alright on my computer this morning. Could it have just been a glitch with my internet provider yesterday?  Its possible as this morning I have had to re-sign into everything.  So annoying trying to remember passwords, etc.  Thankgoodness I have a notebook to help me and even that's not foolproof. My fingers are like hams. I like to see what I am typing! Its so easy to make a mistake! 
I am thankful for ...
Each and every day I am given. Every morning when I open my eyes, I say thankyou God for giving me another day. 
In the kitchen ... 
Heavenly Chicken for two.  Simple, delicious. Moist, tender and filled with flavour along with a beautifully crisp coating.  
On my "To Cook" list ... 
From Delicious.  Pear & Ginger Eve's Pudding with Brown Sugar Custard Sauce.  
Good to know ... 
Inspired Budget. Cash Envelope System.  
I am creating ... 

Holden the Hedgehog.  Ravelry.  Pattern for a crochet hook holder. Not free, but not too expensive either.  Cute.
I actually like this one better.  Free pattern on Ravelry.   

Tilda's World.  Sweet little birds.  
Happy Hooligans.  Paper Fortune Cookie Valentines.  
Postcards from the Attic.  Assemblage Clock.  
I am Reading ... 
A Thousand Roads Home, by Carmel Harrington  
 'Where is home?’ DJ asked. 
‘Wherever the people you love are.’ Ruth replied. 

Single mother, Ruth, and her son, DJ, have never truly fitted in, but that didn’t matter, so long as they were together. When their home comes under threat, their quiet life will change forever.

DJ meets Tom, a man who ten years ago walked out of his house and never looked back. Ruth, DJ and Tom have all felt like outsiders. Burdened with grief and insecurities, they are not living their best lives. But together, these three ordinary people will do an extraordinary thing…

I have only just begun this book.

Dreaming about ... 

Outdoor skating rinks.  That's all we had when I was a child  . . . 


Hot cocoa with marshmallows  . . .  

Wintery landscapes  . . .  cosy  . . . silent  . . .  cold  . . . 

Writing desks with built in clocks  . . .  


Taking down Christmas  . . .  Todd wants to do it today, I want to do it tomorrow  . . .  who will win?

Makes me smile ... 

They look happy  . . . 

Something to watch ... 


Friends  . . .  but alas I hear it is leaving Netflix on the 1st of January.  Where will I get my fix then?  I am bummed about that  . . . 

A thought to carry with you ... 

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

Your value does not decrease
based upon someone's 
inability to see your worth.
•。★★ 。* 。•。★★ 。* 。 

Corners of my kingdom ... 

Sunset outside my back door two nights ago  . . . stunning . . . 

 And that's my daybook for this week!

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

  ⋰ ⋮ ⋱ blessings in life.*´¯`.¸¸.☆ 

✿¸.•*¨`*•..✿✿¸.•*¨`*•..✿ ✿¸.•*¨`*•..¸✿ ✿¸.•*¨`*•..¸✿ ✿¸.• ╬♥═╬╬═♥=╬╬═♥╬╬═♥╬╬═♥=╬╬♥═╬♥╬╬═♥╬╬═♥=╬╬♥
░░░░░░░░░░░░░ ░░░░░░░░░░░░ ░░░░░░░░░░░░  

Have a beautiful day!  Don't forget!   

═══════════ ღೋƸ̵̡Ӝ̵̨̄Ʒღೋ ═══════════ ⊰✿░G░O░D⊰✿⊰L░O░V░E░S⊰✿⊰░Y░O░U░⊰✿
═══════════ ღೋƸ̵̡Ӝ̵̨̄Ʒღೋ ═══════════   

And I do too!       


Monday, 30 December 2019

Computer Woes


I have been experiencing problems with my computer for a few days now. (Right now I am on my iPad) Well for months really. It is an old laptop which no longer fully charges. I did try to buy a new charging cord thinking that would sort the problem out, but it really hasn’t. The most charged my lap top gets is about 13%, so not ideal. 

Add to that the problem I am having with photo bucket. For years I have hosted my photos on there, and paid to do so. For the last couple of years I haven’t used it for my photos, instead choosing to directly upload them to the blogs. I should have been doing that all along, but all of my old photos, family ones etc. Are stored on photo bucket. For some reason this stopped working over a week ago. I couldn’t even log onto the site. I pay an annual fee to store my photos there, even though I no longer technically use it. I do that because I don’t want to lose the years of work I have put into both my blogs, as well as my art blog. Today I can log into it, but none of my photos are showing still. I did try to renew my plan. It took all my payment details, but still no dice. Colour me frustrated.

On the plus side I’m finished my antibiotics now, so that’s good. I hope I don’t need anymore.

I am not sure how I can go on. I can’t buy a new laptop and using my iPad to blog with is not ideal to say the least. I’ve always had problems doing that. I am totally surprised I have gotten this far this morning.  For one thing my iPad won’t allow me to comment on any blogs, including my own, so I can’t respond to comments or leave my own comments. This irks me because I have always prided myself on being diligent in responding. If people can take the time to write then I should take the time to respond. That’s what takes me so long each morning. NOT complaining. I love it. I sometimes have to respond to a couple hundred on my EK Facebook page, but I do it. I remember when Ariana was living with us she questioned why I did that and said she would never spend the time. But that’s me. I spend the time and always will.

Not sure how I can continue without my laptop though or with all those ugly blank spaces showing up where my photos used to be. Hopefully the photos will show up again, fingers crossed. I feel bad because I have been unable to comment on blogs, or respond to your lovely  comments. 

We will just have to wait and see what happens. 2019 certainly has been my annus-horribilius! Even the Queen has those!

I’ll be back when all is sorted, but in the meantime I hope you forgive my silence on here. Hopefully it won’t be for too long!

Marie xo

Sunday, 29 December 2019

A bit of fun on a Sunday . . .

So yesterday they announced all of the awards that the Queen is giving out this year, the OBE's, Dame-hoods, Night-hoods, Peer-hoods and what-nots. Some of it I understand and some of it I don't.  I can understand giving an award to some one who has actually done something to better the world around us, but awards just for being in the public eye and famous?  I think it cheapens the whole thing.  That's just my opinion. 

Personally I think that the closest I will ever get to Royalty is the gates at Buckingham Palace. That's pretty fine with me.  I would be terrified of putting the wrong foot forward, or that I would fall over attempting a curtsy!

Have you ever wondered what the protocol would be surrounding the chance to meet Royalty in person. For some people this is a dream and for other just meh.  But just in case it ever really happens, knowing the rules you need to adhere to would probably be a good thing!!  Relaxed or Formal there is definitely a right and a wrong way to do it!

In  formal situation, such as a state occasion, the awarding of an OBE, etc. the proper thing to do is to wait for a royal aide to introduce you. 

"Your Royal Highness,  may I present Flamingo Toes Rosebottom." 

That would be the cue for you to present your finest curtsy if you are a woman or bow if you are a man.  Apparently for a woman just a brief bob with your weight on the front foot will suffice.  You don't have to sink down with a huge flourish risking the threat of falling over.  Who knew!  And when you leave you have to repeat it.   

One thing you don't want to be doing it thrusting out your hand to shake hands with them without them having first offered their hand to you.  And if perchance they do, don't bone-crush them, or try to hang on to them for dear life.  Short and succinct is usually the key.  Extended shaking is a true faux pas!  

 When speaking to the Queen, the first words you utter should be "Your Majesty," but after that you can refer to her as "Ma'am," which rhymes with jam.  Should you actually get that far in conversation you can consider yourself very lucky.  They are not ever to be referred to as "You."  But if you do get that far I believe "Your Royal Highness" will do as well. 

"I hope Your Royal Highness is enjoying this weather."

"Oh Lizzie,  aren't we enjoying some great sunshine this summer."
(Tres incorrect)   

There was a time when leading the conversation with the Royals was considered to be quite rude, but today we can enjoy a more relaxed tone. ie. your tone should be deferential without being fawning. 

Of course if you are in an informal situation things are totally different.  Supposing you popped into your local Pizza Express and Prince Andrew just happened by, you should still wait to be introduced rather than introducing yourself (This could be somewhat of a hazard in his case from what I understand, but if it does perchance happen, don't worry about it as he will probably forget meeting you anyways.)  You can proceed with a somewhat informal conversation after that, but whatever you do you need to always make them believe that they are in charge and hold the reins.  

It goes without saying any fruitiness or controversial subjects of conversation should be avoided unless first instigated by them.  For instance it would not be appropriate at all to talk about Brexit or Donald Trump.  Do also try to remain low-key, as over-formality could risk them being embarrassed or draw unwanted attention to them. 

I also don't believe that they would appreciate being told that they have spinach caught between their front teeth, and if perhaps they do, try not to stare at it too much, or make nervous gestures trying to draw it to their attention.  If you were to do something like that, the likelihood of you ever being invited back is probably quite slim to nil.  

Above all, enjoy the occasion for what it is.  A once-in-a-lifetime occurrence.  It will probably never happen again!


Have you ever wondered about what exactly is in the Queen's handbag?  Wonder no more.  I have the big scoop. 

It is a Launer bag.

"All bags made for the Queen are bespoke, made of the softest calf leather. The style she has been using most in recent years is the Traviata, a simple shape with short handles and the famous Launer silver twisted rope logo used as a clasp on the front." 

As for what's in it  . . .  to end any speculation this is what I have learnt . . .

Reading glasses, a handkerchief, mints and a fountain pen.  Also treats for the Corgis and a portable hook so that she can hang it discreetly from the edge of any table neatly, like when she is eating. A penknife, some perfume (Floris is supposed to be a favourite), some good luck charms, and a handful of family photographs.

It is also used as a form of communication, meant to send messages to her aids . . .  coded signals as it were.

  • On walkabouts, Her Majesty may choose to "drop the bag to one side in a certain manner, telling her staff it's time for her to move on". A lady-in-waiting will then join the conversation, allowing the monarch to slip away without causing offence.
  • The monarch, who meets thousands of people each year in the course of her work, may also use the solid, square bag to gain personal space when someone gets a little too close.
  • When the Queen places her bag on the table it means she wishes to take her leave in around five minutes, while putting it on the floor tells aides to speak to a guest or move them along the table. 
And now you know it all.  

A thought to carry with you  . . .

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

Kindness is loaning 
someone your strength
instead of reminding 
them of their weakness.
~unknown•。★★ 。* 。 

I have been feeling all Christmas-goodied out so yesterday I baked some Maple & Walnut Muffins.  partly in homage to my dad who loves anything maple walnut, and to myself who loves that kind of thing also. Naturally sweetened,  not too sweet, moist and delicious.  In short,  just right.  

Have a beautiful Sunday, the last one of 2019.  Don't forget! 

═══════════ ღೋƸ̵̡Ӝ̵̨̄Ʒღೋ ═══════════ ⊰✿░G░O░D⊰✿⊰L░O░V░E░S⊰✿⊰░Y░O░U░⊰✿
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And I do too! 


Saturday, 28 December 2019

Saturday This and That . . .

Aren't these cute?  Pine Cone Christmas Gnomes.  

I have to say I am really enjoying these quiet days in between Christmas and New Years.  I haven't really been doing much of anything and its been quite relaxing.  I did finally get to talk to my dad yesterday and that was great!  I sure do love my father.  But then again, I love all my family. 

I got to speak to David, my brother, again yesterday, which was great.  He has taken up Glider flying over the past few years and just loves it. He was able to buy a share with another guy of his own glider recently, which means he will be able to get up and soar a lot more next season. It makes me really happy that he has found this lovely hobby for himself and that he enjoys it so much.  His whole life he has been serving others and doing for others, so its nice to see him doing something just for himself now.  He got started when he took his youngest daughter to fly gliders when she was in air cadets, and he decided he wanted to try himself. He was hooked and has worked really hard to get his lisence.  I think it must be pretty wonderful to glide through the sky like that, like a bird  . . .  He has a YouTube channel where he has put on videos of him flying over the Ottawa area and I have to say they are pretty interesting. You can access them here.  Give him a thumbs up and tell him I sent you!  He will be thrilled!  

I sure love my brother.  He was the youngest of the three of us. I was almost five when he was born and I can still remember the day my maternal Grandfather came home from the hospital where my mother had given birth and told us all that it was a boy.  I grabbed my sisters little hands and we danced around the kitchen, singing  . . .  "We have a little brother, we have a little brother!"  Out of the three of us who called Nova Scotia our home, he is actually the only one who was born there!  The same Doctor that delivered my mother, delivered my brother.  How's that for continuity!   I am sure it doesn't happen very often. 

I love my whole family.  We are very close to each other, which is a real blessing to me.  We all miss mom terribly.  We are beginning to be able to talk and remember now without totally breaking down. It is interesting how we each have individual memories and qualities about her that we loved, and yet at the same time there are wonderfully shared memories and qualities as well.  That's family.  

I was so blessed to be able to dream about my mother pretty much all of last night. It was so nice visiting with her.  Every night I pray to know she is happy and settled and not far away  . . . 

We watched a really good film yesterday on Netflix.  The Two Popes.  I am not a Catholic, but my father is and so was my Aunt Thelma and of course my father's whole family is Catholic.  My only knowledge of the Catholic Church really is the tiny bits we experienced when we would go to visit my father's family when we were growing up. They didn't know we were Protestants, so we had to pretend to be Catholic because apparently there was some fear he would be ostracised if they did know we weren't Catholic.  The first they knew was when I got married the first time and my Aunt asked my father why I was getting married in a Protestant church.  So our faking it when we went to visit must have been okay.  I just remember my mother saying to us, when everyone stands up, stand up, when they kneel, kneel, and when they cross themselves, you do that too. 

When my father was a much younger man and before marriage, he had wanted to be a Priest, apparently.  In retrospect, I cannot picture my father ever being a Priest. He has too much of an eye for the ladies!  And of course I am glad he didn't become a Priest because we would not be here!

But, I did enjoy the film.  It was quite interesting to me to see another side of the Catholic church, apart from all of the abuse scandals, etc.  I highly recommend it! 

Speaking of my first husband. He is a teacher at an International School in Almaty, Kazakhstan.  If you have never heard of it before, I am sure you heard of it yesterday because of the passenger jet crash yesterday.  The first thing I thought of was, were he and his wife involved.  They travel back and forth to Canada every holiday.  Thankfully they were not.  He is my oldest son's father, and we remain friends.  At least we are friends on facebook, which is something I can't say about my second husband.  I guess I was rather spoiled with my parent's divorce.  My mother and father remained close friends, right up until the day she passed.  They were the Poster-children of good divorce.  I will always be grateful that we never felt that we had to take sides in their split up and that we felt free to love each of them equally.  It should be the same for everyone, but sadly it so is not the norm.   

Todd's nephew's partner just took off to live in Ireland with her new paramour, who inherited an Irish Property, taking his two children with them.  They are my BIL and SIL's only grandchildren and they were very close to them.  The children often spent weekends in their home and holidays.  Now they don't know when or even if they will ever see them again  . . .  its rather sad really.  

I have begun compiling a list of crafts that I would like to be able to create over the next year, maybe one a month. We'll see.  I don't do enough crafting and would love to do more.  I used to basically be crafting all the time in my spare time when the children were growing up.  I guess I have always been creative. So, yes, it is my goal in the next year to do more and to use up some of those craft supplies I have just sitting in the spare room gathering dust!  Isn't this a cute idea of what to do with an old book?  I couldn't find an actual source, so if you know where it comes from, let me know and I will add it. 

I only have today and tomorrow to take my antibiotics and I will be so glad when they are finished.  So, horrible they are.  I can taste them for hours afterwards, which is especially bad at night when I am laying down and trying to sleep.  I hope I don't have to wait too long for my surgery.  I am terrified that the same situation will crop up again.  As it is, I am still experiencing pain and feeling uncomfortable. On the bright side I am looking foward to our lunch out today!  It will be nice to spend some time with Tina and Tony and to share some tasty food together!  Tina's recovering slowly but surely, and I am sure our prayers helped and are helping in that area!

And with that I best leave you with a thought for the day! 

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

Love is never wasted, 
for its value is does not 
rest upon reciprocity.
~C. S. Lewis•。★★ 。* 。 

Finally something new to share in The English Kitchen.   Some tasty, quick and easy nibbles for New Years Eve.  Spicy Pepitas and Spiced Pecans.  Great with drinks or even for snacks.   These would also be great sprinkled on your salads, as an added bit of tasty protein and crunch!

Have a wonderful Saturday and don't forget! 

═══════════ ღೋƸ̵̡Ӝ̵̨̄Ʒღೋ ═══════════ ⊰✿░G░O░D⊰✿⊰L░O░V░E░S⊰✿⊰░Y░O░U░⊰✿
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And I do too!