Saturday 29 June 2024

All Things Nice . . .


I love bright weather . . .  when the fields are green,
When every garden tries to steal the scene,
Flaunting its loveliness with tender pride,
And Earth takes on the raiment of a bride.

I love bright weather with a touch of rain,
To gladden up the fields and wash the grain,
'Til every leaf shines like a warrior's blade,
And fields are like a carpet richly laid,

I love bright weather . . . when the skies bend down,
To touch the little houses of the town,
When red-cheeked apples and sweet Bartlett pears,
Send out their messages like signal flares.

When wheat has taken on its golden coat,
And there is rapture in the robin's note;
When purple haze hangs like a temple veil,
Along the upper reaches of the trail.

I love bright weather . . .  sown with stars and song,
And shadows on the stubble blue and long,
Like ladders stretching out along the ground,
Showing the world where Peace might still be found.
~Edna Jacques, Bright Weather
The Hills of Home, 1946

As we near the end of the month of June I am looking forward to diving deep into summer. It hardly seems possible that we are halfway through the year, but here we are. The water's of July are near enough for us to be tipping our toes into them, waiting for us to plunge in headfirst.  Oh, I do so love the summer months with their bright and sunny days.  

A season of warmth and abundance, a time when the sun kisses the earth and everything seems to burst with life. It's the season of long days and short nights, where the air is filled with the scent of blooming flowers and the sound of laughter from outdoor gatherings. 

There's a sense of freedom as schools close and vacations begin, offering a chance to create memories under the open sky. Whether it's the thrill of a spontaneous road trip, the relaxation of lying on a sun-drenched beach, or the simple pleasure of ice cream on a hot day, summer brings with it joys that help to warm the heart long after the season fades.  I love bright weather  . . . 


Of course not all days bring sunshine to our tables. We sometimes get rainy days as well, which bring with them their own special gifts.  

Rainy days treat us to a special kind of joy, with the rhythmic pattering of raindrops that invites a sense of calm and coziness. It's a time when the world seems to slow down, allowing for moments of reflection or the pleasure of curling up with a good book and a warm drink. 

The fresh scent of rain on the earth refreshes the air, and the lush greenery that follows is a vibrant reminder of nature's cycle of renewal. Indeed, there's a unique beauty and tranquility in the gentle embrace of a rainy day that I quite enjoy.  There is a deep pleasure to be found in being  tucked up safe and warm indoors, curled beneath a throw,  as you watch  rain and wind pelt against the windows.

Life is a mix of both sunshine and rain . . . 


My love of all things white extends to much more than my towels or my bedding.  White, the color of snowflakes gently descending from a winter sky, symbolizes purity and peace. It's the canvas of clouds against which the rainbow unfurls its spectrum. 

In the realm of flowers, white blooms like jasmine and lilies exude a delicate fragrance, standing for innocence and grace. The color white, in its simplicity, holds a universal beauty, reflecting light in a way that brings calm and comfort to the beholder. It's a testament to the elegance that exists in the absence of color, a blank slate that invites endless possibilities.

I especially love white in a garden  . . . 


One of the most breathtakingly beautiful gardens I have ever seen is the "white garden" at Sissinghurst castle gardens situated in the South East of England.  All of the individual gardens at Sissinghurst are beautiful, but the white garden holds a special beauty all of its own.  I think it is the most spectacular of all their gardens.  Each of the plants within this space are a lovely combination of white bloom and green foliage, the foliage providing the perfect backdrop for each tender white blossom . . . 

A white garden is a canvas of tranquility and elegance. The delicate blooms, from the purest of roses to the softest baby's breath, create a serene palette that calms the mind and soothes the soul. 

They are especially lovely at night  . . . as moonlight dances on their petals, these flowers glow with a luminescent grace, casting a spell of peace over the evening. 

A white garden is not just a feast for the eyes; it's a sanctuary where every breeze carries the subtle perfume of jasmine, and every corner offers a moment of reflection. It's a place where time slows, and nature's beauty whispers to us in hushed tones.

Oh how blessed I was to have witnessed such pleasures as this in my lifetime  . . . 


I have always loved the night  . . . . the night's beauty lies in its serene tranquility, a canvas of darkness that holds the twinkling stars like diamonds scattered across the sky. 

It's a time when the world slows down, and the hushed whispers of the night creatures weave a lullaby. The moon, in its silvery splendor, casts a gentle glow, creating a landscape of soft shadows and mystery. This enchanting time offers a moment of reflection and peace, a soothing balm for the soul after the day's hustle. 

Indeed, the night has a quiet magic, one that whispers of secrets and dreams waiting to be discovered.

A vision of ethereal light and sound in a beautifully breathtaking dance for the senses  . . . 

The night sky is a vast expanse of wonder, a tapestry of celestial bodies that have fascinated humans for millennia. It's where the constellations form mythological patterns, telling stories of ancient heroes and beasts. 

On a clear night, planets like Mars, Jupiter, and Saturn share the stage with countless stars, offering a glimpse into the immense scale of our universe. And sometimes, if you're lucky, you might catch the fleeting trail of a shooting star, inviting you to make a wish upon its ephemeral journey. 

The night sky is not just a sight to behold; it's an experience that connects us to the infinite mysteries of the cosmos.


It is the story of all life
that is holy and that is good to tell,
and of us two leggeds sharing in it
with the four leggeds
and the wings of the air
and all green things
for these are the children of one mother
and their father is one spirit.
~Black Elk Speaks

I loved  reading these words this morning   . . .  they spoke to my heart.  I love how our native peoples are so attuned with nature and the world around us and how their love of it all comes out through their folklore and their teachings. Teachings which are  a vast tapestry of stories, beliefs, and traditions, reflecting the diverse cultures of our continent's indigenous peoples.  They did not try to tame their world, or make it bow to their will . . .  but they revered it in an almost holy way  that we could and all should learn from.

Their tales and traditions often explored the intricate relationships between humans, nature, and the spiritual world, featuring elements like the Great Spirit, shape-shifting animals, and powerful natural forces. Characters like the trickster Coyote, the mighty Thunderbird, and the revered Glooskap are central to many narratives, embodying the values, wisdom, and humor of these rich oral traditions.

I think our children should be taught these things in our schools, the value of these traditions.  The sacredness of the world around us.

Just my thoughts  . . . 

And with that I will leave you with a thought for the day  . . . 

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

 *There is nothing in a caterpillar
that tells you it is going to be a butterfly.
~Richard Buckminster Fuller° * 。 • ˚ ˚ ˛ ˚ ˛ •
° * 。 • ˚ ˚ ˛ ˚ ˛ •° * 。 • ˚ ˚ ˛ ˚ ˛ •

Quick Banana Split Shortcakes

In The English Kitchen today  . . .  Quick Banana Split Shortcakes. A quick and easy dessert to enjoy on this holiday long weekend! 

I have managed to bring the ants under control.  Those Terro Ant Baits are miracle workers.  I put several of them out early yesterday morning and by evening. The ants were swarming.  By evening they were considerably fewer and this morning I can't see any at all.  Fingers crossed!  Yesterday they were even crawling on me.  I hate to harm any living creature, but there is a limit to my tolerance.

I hope you have a lovely weekend filled with plenty of nice things. Happy Canada Day weekend to my Canadian readers. Stay safe, be happy, don't forget!

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And I do too! 

Friday 28 June 2024

Today . . .


 I don't really have time to do my usual Friday Finds post today. I have been up and battling ants since before six o'clock this morning. All of the rain we had yesterday has driven them indoors and my place is literally crawling with them. I don't know how I am going to get any work done today as they are all over my counter/floors/etc.  I had put out a Terro ant bait station yesterday and I have put out three  more this morning. They are even crawling on me as soon as I sit.  It is just awful.  I saw a guy last week going around spraying the outsides of every house but I don't think it does a whole lot of good. Our homes are built on very sandy soil and we have no basements, so the ant just come inside and I believe there are even tons of them in nests beneath the houses.  Its just awful.  This too shall pass.  Today and tomorrow will be bad as they all swarm in finding the ant bait stations, but hopefully within a couple of days things will settle down.  I HATE ANT SEASON! It doesn't seem to matter how scrupulous you are, you still get inundated with them.

I will be back tomorrow with a fresh post. Here's hoping!

In the meantime have a great day and don't forget!

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And I do too! 

Thursday 27 June 2024

My Favorite Things . . .


These are some of the things in life that I enjoy and which make me happy, inspire me, or put a smile on my face. Maybe some of them are yours too.  Lets share! 

Transferware.  Love the stuff.


Fresh Corn. Won't be long now, about a month.  Yay!


Oriental Poppies. They don't last long but they are stunning.


Fresh Sage  . . .  oh how I miss my English Garden with all of its herbs. They grew like weeds there.


Going barefoot, although I don't these days because of diabetes.  Too afraid of cutting  my feet.


Vanilla Cake. Its my favorite kind of cake. Best vanilla cake I have ever tasted was one by Peg Porschen.  She did the wedding cake (s) for the daughter of the people I worked for at the manor. Beautifully decorated and the loveliest vanilla cake I have ever tasted.  Ever.


French Onion Soup. The first time I ever tasted it was when my first husband's best friend's girlfriend Julia made it for us at a dinner party she invited us to.  I thought it was amazing. 


Hand embroidered day of the week towels.  Love them.


Honey. Although I have never tried Bonne Maman honey.  I love Greek honey most of all.


Stone walls. You see a lot of those in the North of England.  So pretty  . . . 


Misty riverbanks  . . .  early in the morning, not too long after the sun has risen.  Ethereal . . . 


French Milled Soaps . . .  you can scarce bring yourself to use them, they are so pretty.


The month of both my sister's and my mother's birthdays . . .  


Polka Dots and that bird plate on the bottom  . . . 


What a pretty watch  . . . 


Enamelware  . . . 


Fresh Cherries  . . . 

And I am run out of time. I was a bit later getting up this morning. I got at 4 am to go to the loo and I could hear an alarm buzzing, so I came out to check what it was and it was the cat's water fountain, which they had knocked over so I disconnected it and cleaned up and went back to bed, but it took me forever to fall back asleep. I will be dragging today!

A thought to carry with you . . . 

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

 *People were created to be loved. 
Things were created to be used. 
The reason why the world is in chaos is
 because things are being loved 
and people are being used.”
~John Greene, Looking for Alaska

Slice and Bake Lemon Cookies

In The English kitchen today, Slice-And-Bake Lemon Cookies. Oh my but these are very delicious. Crisp and buttery with a sugar crunch on top and a sweet/tart lemon glaze.

I hope that you have a beautiful day and that you get to enjoy a few of your favorite things! Whatever you get up to, don't forget!

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And I do too! 

Wednesday 26 June 2024

Wednesday Witterings . . .



Yesterday marked the halfway point until Christmas.  Yes folks, only six months until Christmas. Oh, I know we have a lot of other days and occasions to get through until then, but . . . is it ever too early to start preparing?  I don't know.  Every year it seems to creep up on me. I have plans to write nice little notes to put into every card I send, and instead I end up writing them out hurriedly and only getting them into the post at the last minute.  Perhaps this year I should start much earlier. Hold that thought  . . .  nah . . . I will probably end up repeating what I do every years and hurriedly scratching them out in early December, as much as I would like it to be otherwise.

This photograph came up on my memories on Facebook yesterday. From my back garden in Chester.  I used to love watching the Peacock Red butterflies that visited my garden every year.  Some days there would be half a dozen at a time sunning themselves and feasting on the flowers. If you look really closely you will see a bumble bee on the lower left hand side of Buddleia blossom.   I got so much pleasure out of that garden, even though I didn't do any work on it myself really.  My work was just enjoying it. 


This little painting came up on my memories also.  Oh how I miss sitting down every day and creating these little characters.  I don't really have the time  now. By the time of the day when I have free time, I am feeling pretty tired.  I also don't have the Copic markers either, which is what I used to use for most of my characters. I have checked into replacing them, but boy oh boy, are they ever expensive.  It would be nearly a thousand dollars to get both sets that I had replaced.  That's too rich for my blood now.

I actually should get my markers out and see which ones are still good and which ones need replacing.  

I am not sure why I stopped doing this kind of thing entirely.  I suppose a tiny bit of depression after all that happened?  I don't know.  I did not think I was depressed, but  . . .  I suppose anyone would be. It was quite a difficult time for me emotionally and mentally.

But what is my excuse now?  Lack of time . . .  as well as motivation. I need to do better.

I used to love going on the swings when I was a child. It was as close to being able to fly like a bird as I could get.  I would soar on that thing.  What a feeling it was.  The wind brushing against my cheeks  as I pumped higher and higher.  There was no feeling like it on earth. 

I suppose that would be the feeling of adrenaline pumping through my veins.   The adrenaline rush. I never really thought about it until this morning. My knees would probably not let me do it now.  Ahh  . . .  youth. We take all these things for granted.  Simple things like being able to pump your legs enough to enable you to soar on a swing.   These days it is a good feeling to just be able to walk to my post box! haha  We must take our blessings where we find them!


It is a beautiful sunny day out there this morning.  I have my living room window open to let in some fresh air. We had a couple of rainy days so the sunshine is more than welcome.  The kitty cats are sitting on the window sill breathing in the fresh air, listening to the birds and enjoying it also.  I have seen photos of these outdoor cat houses.  They attach to a window and are like  a place where they can be outside but without any danger.  Oh to be able to afford something like that, and to have a window that it would be possible. 

I saw one one day which was a hen house, adapted for cats. It was so cool.  The cats in the photograph were really enjoying it.  If I won the lottery I would have something like that.  Mind you, I never buy lottery tickets so it would really take a miracle for me to win it, lol.

My parents bought lottery tickets without fail, every week for years and years and years.  My father still does.   And he buys tickets on the house lottery that the hospital in Halifax sell every year. Those are really expensive tickets. I think $100 a piece.  They are really nice houses to be sure, the ones that they give away, but you would have to be able to afford the taxes on them, which I imagine would be pretty steep.  I don't think you are allowed to sell them for at least a year or two.  I am not sure.

I no longer dream about having a big beautiful house.  I am contented to have what I have.  It is not mine, but neither are the upkeep bills.  Where I live suits me very well. The cats will just have to be content with  enjoying the outside from their perches on the  windowsill.


I imagine all of the kids are finished school now for the summer.  That used to be such an exciting time for me.  Those early days of summer when there was no school.  Just days and days of sunshine and fun. Time to skip rope and ride my bicycle.  I grew up on air force bases so you knew all of the other children in the neighborhood and your father's all worked together.  There was a special sense of family and familiarity because not very many of us had extended family that lived in the same area.  Our families were our neighbors.  We would play together as a group.  There would be games of tag and British bulldog, kick the can, etc.  I don't remember ever being really bored.

We didn't go on "holidays."  My parents couldn't afford it. We might have a day at the beach complete with swimming in the lake and ice cream cones.  My mother was not a person who enjoyed being outside at all.  When we got older, and lived closer to my father's family there were a few trips to Quebec to visit them.  I remember going there for two weddings. My Aunt Arlette's and my Uncle Patrice's. So, special occasions.  Those were really big deals.

My dad was the kind of guy who got us all in the car, put the pedal to the metal and didn't stop for anything but to fill up with gas.   We never got to see the world's largest ball of string except in passing.  My husband was the same way.  We did not go on holidays as such, just home to visit parents. and yes, pedal to the metal.

That is probably why I really enjoyed the holidays I got to go on when I lived in the U.K. and could travel. Germany, Belgium, France, Austria, Scotland, Devon, London.  All very much enjoyed. What a blessing it was to be able to see and spend time in all of those places.  


I am not sure yet what today holds.  A bit of work. A bit of play. Supper out with Dad and Hazel. Dad was supposed to come over for a shower yesterday, but he had a dentist appointment and got up too late, so that didn't happen. Maybe today.  Whatever unfolds, it will be fresh and new.  I know I need to vacuum again!  I could vacuum every day. I don't know how they do it, but the cats make a mess!  Bits of food, hair, etc.  I am not complaining.  I am grateful for their company and do enjoy them very much.   Whatever I get up to today, it will be worthwhile. I would love to drive up to the shore . . . 

And with that I best leave you with a thought for today as time is marching on!

A thought to carry with you . . . 

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

 *The world is a book,
and those who do not travel
read only one page.° * 。 • ˚ ˚ ˛ ˚ ˛ •
~Saint Augustine° * 。 • ˚ ˚ ˛ ˚ ˛ •
° * 。 • ˚ ˚ ˛ ˚ ˛ •

Italian Sausage Meat Balls

In The English Kitchen today . . .  Italian Sausage Meatballs. I made these with some of the Italian sausage that Cindy and I made on Friday. They were really good. I made a simple gravy and some mashed potatoes to enjoy with them. 

I hope you have a beautiful summer day, no matter what you get up to today. Stay safe. Stay happy. Be blessed. Count your blessings.  Enjoy, and don't forget!

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And I do too!