Wednesday, June 29, 2011

A Mid-Week Memory

"Memory as we now know it is a dim foretaste, a mirage even, of a power which the soul, or rather Christ in the soul (He went to 'prepare a place' for us), will exercise hereafter.  It need no longer be intermittent.  Above all, it need no longer be private to the soul in which it occurs.  I can now communicate to you the fields of my boyhood...only imperfectly, by words.  Perhaps the day is coming when I can take you for a walk through them."         CS Lewis

"Me and Sweet Lu"

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

A Poem for Tuesday

This week I have been enjoying a magazine* given to me for Mother's Day...

Which led me to the poem for the week...

Three Stings by Shel Silverstein

George got stung by a bee and said,
"I wouldn't have got stung if I'd stayed in bed."
Fred got stung and we heard him roar,
"What am I being punished for?"
Lew got stung and we heard him say,
"I learned somethin' about bees today."

*  this magazine is a great inspiration to anyone who is the least bit interested in beekeeping...very educational.

Monday, June 27, 2011

To Brighten Your Monday

Just a quick stroll through Butchart again...every time we get company it seems a great place to take folks.  This famous view into the old limestone pit that was made beautiful many years ago never ceases to please.   We were just there 2 weeks ago but the flowers have been changed, some have grown and it still is good for the soul.

"To own a bit of ground, to scratch it with a hoe, to plant seeds and watch their renewal of life, ...this is the commonest delight of the race, the most satisfactory thing a man can do."  Charles Dudley Warner

"The purest and most thoughtful minds are those which love colour the most."  John Ruskin

"He who wants a rose must respect the thorn."  Persian Proverb

"No price is set on the lavish summer; 
June may be had by the poorest comer."
    James Russell Lowell

"The Lord is my Shepherd...He leadeth me beside still waters..."  Psalm 23

"My strength is as the strength of ten,
Because my heart is pure."
   Lord Tennyson, Sir Galahad

Just a little something to cheer you as you begin a new week.  Know that there is always someone thinking of you with love.

God bless and be well.

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Too, Too Busy

While I was outdoors weeding in garden no.7 today I looked around me and decided it was time for a photo op.  I called Sherwin over and we both went off for our cameras.  Within just a few minutes I clicked away like mad and then went back to the weeds.

If you are interested to see other photos I have been taking this year you can always go to a site where I have joined with hundreds of people around the world who post a photo every day.  There are some outstanding photographers out there doing very creative stuff.  Click on the word 'site' above and it will guide you to my page.  From there you can indulge your senses for a long time looking into what I photograph and into the lives of many others.  

Sunday, June 19, 2011

My Father

The Amorer's Daughter by Debora Gregor

My father is a hard man.
When my mother couldn't give him a son,
he made the best of it; that is,
he made me into what was missing.
So I polish a breastplate until
my smudged face is reflected blue-black
and my arm is stiff as a gauntlet.

I have my father's stubborn jaw
they tell me, those boys from the village
who tease, envious of my lot.
The roughened men who come for a mending, 
who bring their smooth sons to be measured, 
say I have his hands, too wide for a woman.
Then I think of the beetle on the stoop
whose shell shamed the finest armour.
It scuttled away when I reached down.
With his hand.

I am and I am not him.
Give me the dusty wings of the moths
that dared spend the night on his workbench
and I would fly ...where?
Out to the hill with the shepherd?
To the mill where the miller's son
is clouded in the finest-ground flour?

This wool-gathering angers my father.
He pounds music from metal, 
a chorus of glow and chill, bend and stay.
I drop a helmet with carelessness
I barely recognize and run into the yard,
into the road, tripping on my skirts.
Late afternoon, after a rain, already
the sun's low flame lights the edges
of everything.  This world shines,
rings and shines, like his dream of heaven.

It has been 9+ years since my father went to the sweet, deep sleep some call death. His presence is still felt every time I look in the mirror or when one of us four girls do something so much like he would have done it.  When I see a new, hot car or an old classic, refurbished well, I think of him.  Horses and dogs remind me of his influence in our lives. As long as time lasts he will be with me because of memories...

And to the three men in our family...Sherwin and our sons, Shelby and Alan, I am wishing you all good memories of this day with your families.  

Hope this day was memorable in some way to you all.

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

A Thought on Thursday...

This World is Not My Home    by Charles Wright

The more you say, the more mistakes you'll make,
                                                                                        so keep it simple.
No one arrives without leaving soon.
This blue-eyed, green footed world—
                                                                   hello, Goldie, goodbye.

We won't meet again. So what?
The rust will remain in the trees,
                                                       and pine needles stretch their necks,
Their tiny necks, and sunlight will snore in the limp grass.

This world is not my home I'm just a passing through
My treasures are laid up somewhere beyond the blue
The angels beckon me from heaven's open door
And I can't feel at home in this world anymore
Oh Lord you know I have no friend like you
If heaven's not my home then Lord what will I do
The angels beckon me from heaven's open door
And I can't feel at home in this world anymore.

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Mid-week Memories of Last Weekend

As long as we have lived on this island Sherwin and I have not stayed overnight in Victoria for any reason.  But this past weekend seemed a good time as there was a feature film showing at IMAX on Saturday evening that would finish way past ferry time.

So we left here early Saturday morning, went to church in Victoria, and then headed over to spend part of the afternoon at Butchart Gardens.

We are both pretty happy if we have our cameras in hand and walking shoes on our feet!

We have a year's pass so we are very familiar with the place and love to badger about looking for the best 'snap' of the day.

The Columbines and the Lupines were at their peak but the rhodies were past their prime...

Everywhere we turned our eyes there were new treasures to see.  

About the time we got to the peonies we were both so sleepy we just had to leave and go find a spot to have a nap...

and so we were off to IMAX for four films..Yes, you heard correctly we were going to see all 4 we had not had time to see yet.

We slept through the first one.  We had worked hard last week and were in need of a good nap. The film barely started and there was a purring cowboy sitting next to me. Since the first film was my least favourite of all, I closed my eyes and slept through it. There was a scene near the beginning where some kayaks went over a waterfall and since I am not fond of that I closed my eyes...just neglected to open them until it was all over.

When I awoke "Born to be Wild" was ready to show which was followed by "Wired to Win", a film on the Tour de France.  We can highly recommend these last two.  Both were great pictures.  The animal stories in "Born to be Wild" were both very precious... and the bicycle story and race were great.  Makes me want to book tickets for Paris next summer.

What we had really gone to town for was the evening feature, "Take Five", a story of men running from the law with hot cars, not necessarily recommended for all audiences.  We went for the car chases which were wild and over-the-top but other than that we will leave the choice of that one strictly with you.  We laughed and enjoyed ourselves, nevertheless.

Now since our last ferry of the day was long gone by now we had to have a place to sleep; Sherwin had booked at the Brentwood Bay Heritage House B&B.  

We were delighted with this old house and the property.  There is a large barn, shed and a cottage on the lot along with this very large house.  There were many bedrooms on 3 floors plus a basement.  We were the only guests for the night so we took our time next morning looking about and taking photos of the place.  

Also loved the barn...

and the white lilacs...

and the fine details throughout the house.  The place has excellent bones with marvellous potential.

One last look at the barn...

And then we were headed for home again.  Hope you all had a great weekend too.  

God bless and be well.

Monday, June 13, 2011

A Poem for Tuesday

Song of the Builders by Mary Oliver

On a summer morning
I sat down
on a hillside
to think about God -

a worthy pastime.
Near me, I saw
a single cricket;
it was moving the grains of the hillside

this way and that way.
How great was its energy,
how humble its effort.
Let us hope

it will always be like this,
each of us going on
in our inexplicable ways
building the universe.

Friday, June 10, 2011

Gratitude on Friday...

"Bees sip honey from flowers and hum their thanks when they leave..."
                                     Rabindranath Tagore

Wishing you all a lovely weekend that is just humming with gratitude!!!
Be well.

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Weekend Memories Mid-Week

Late Friday afternoon my cowboy and I headed out of town (off the island) for distant shores (Tsawwassen).  After 45 years we still enjoy doing road trips together... 

Looking back at our port we said a reluctant goodbye to our island paradise.   

We had been invited to share our weekend with husband's sister and her husband. That means a ferry ride, which we love, where we see all manner of watercraft out and about on the ocean.

We were made comfortable in the PEI room with Anne of Green Gables...isn't she a doll?

Next morning we woke to blue skies, sunshine and greenery around.  

Our first tourist adventure centred around a Catholic monastery, Westminster Abbey in Mission, BC, which I found a pure delight.  I do so love to see people do their best when it comes to building an edifice for worship.

The exterior of the church was not over-the-top but when we opened the doors and went inside we were delighted and awed...

It was so beautiful and quiet that I felt it was inappropriate to take any photos at all but I did 'click' a few times, then just sat and enjoyed. Next we were off to take a walk around the grounds.

From a viewpoint we looked down at the Fraser River and we could see a glorious Mt. Baker.

It was a lovely walk through woods, past pastures and roads and then back to the Abbey.

There was a retreat in progress and people gathered at the end of the day for worship.

That was Day One of the weekend...Next day we walked sans camera in the morning, delighted in 'Darlion' by Cirque du Soleil in the afternoon... 

and enjoyed a concert of good music in the evening thanks to our host and his Bose.
Monday morning we rose at the crack of dawn and headed over to Whistler for a golf game.

It mattered not that I had on my lucky bracelet and used my lucky ball. I had so few good shots that my courage level plummeted by the end of the day.

We did have a lovely time, were home by 9'ish something and happy to be back in our nest. Hope you had a great weekend too.

Saturday, June 4, 2011

Characters Meme Continued...

It is fun to play along on these word or idea games that come along. Daughter posted this short quick one the other day and I had to come along for the ride!        
1. Rockstar Name (first pet, current car): Laddie G35x 
2. Gangsta Name (fave ice cream flavor, favorite type of shoe): Strawberry Blanik
3. Native American Name (fave color, fave animal): Turquoise Bear
4. Superhero Name (2nd fave color, fave drink): Hot Pink Coco
5. Nascar Name (first names of your grandfathers): John J Reinhold
6. Stripper Name (name of your fave scent/perfume, fave candy): FlowerBomb Twizzler
7. TV Weather Anchor Name (5th grade teacher’s last name, major city that starts with same letter): Arrison Annapolis
8. Spy Name (fave season/holiday, flower): Christmas Rose
9. Cartoon Name (favorite fruit, article of clothing you’re wearing right now): Raspberry Bracelet
10. Hippie Name (what you ate for breakfast, favorite tree): Banana Banana

You can see that I played around with these names somewhat but my morning mind wanted a little fun...
All you do is copy this to either my comments and finish each name in your own way or send it back in an email... I would love to see your names.

Friday, June 3, 2011

For This I Am Grateful

If you have been following my meanderings this week you know I have been looking at lists...60 things to do in the next 100 days that may improve my life...

It seems to me that if I am going to make any changes in my world then I better decide what is really most important to me and focus there.  We have all heard about the guy who dabbles in everything and does not accomplish much of anything...that has been me.

So, tonight I am thankful for the opportunity to make choices, yet again.  The ability to choose is a wonderful gift.  

Tonight I am thankful for my camera and the hours of pleasure I have had with it hanging about my neck.  When I returned from Paris I realized that the photos I brought back were my best 'purchase'.  I didn't buy any perfume or antiques or whatever else was offered in the shops...but I brought back over 3000 photos. 

Tonight I am thankful for my garden and the time to spend there with the plants and the birds.  Of course, the sunshine is very winsome when it shines and lures me out.  

And the bees have found the hot spot of the garden...

Tonight I am very thankful for good authors who keep me thinking and moving forward and worshipping.  Particularly I am thankful for CS Lewis who is an author I return to when the questions get too thick and difficult to answer.

"A man can no more diminish God's glory by refusing to worship Him than a lunatic can put out the sun by scribbling the word, 'darkness' on the walls of his cell."
                                       -C. S. Lewis

Tonight I find myself very thankful for the end of the week.  It was a short week but it was very busy and now we can rest awhile.

May your hearts be full with gratitude as you start your Sabbath.  May sunshine come to your house this coming week.  And may you be well.

Thursday, June 2, 2011

Thoughtful Thursday: What is Really Important (to me)

Early this week I was given a strong reminder of how I do love organization but how much I have let slip around here.  For years I have taken a great 'pride' in how much I could get done in a day, and how delighted I was to move quickly and surely through my day just whippin' off the tasks on my list. 

You get the picture...

Well, for some reason or other I have slowed up and sat down and pulled back.    But Sherilee posted a blog this week about getting life back on track.  I have been inspired and have made determined resolve to clean up my act and get back to getting things done.

If you did not read the article from Sherilee's blog, click here to see what the fuss is all about.

Sixty in one hundred...60 things to do in the next 100 days!!  That means that by Labour Day I should have built some new habits and/or put some muscle in my old ones.  

Last night I took the list from the website and hand-wrote it in my book...I can see that I will attack some of the ideas, not all, and make them mine.

So this promises to be a productive and fulfilling summer.  When you read the list you may have some new ones to add or some ideas how best to accomplish some of these ideas.  Please share them with me.  I am always looking for a new way to make things happen.

The price of doing the same old thing is far higher than the price of change.
                                      -Bill Clinton

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

When Lilacs Last in the Dooryard Bloom'd

When lilacs last in the dooryard bloom'd,
And the great star early droop'd in the western sky in the night,
I mourn'd and yet shall mourn with ever-returning spring...
                                                 -Walt Whitman

Those are just the opening lines to the lengthy poem by Mr. Whitman who wrote these words just after the assassination of Abraham Lincoln in the spring of 1865. 

Even now when I see lilacs I think of Mr. Whitman and Mr. Lincoln. This is a flower that fills my heart. 

The Pillow That Was Meant For The Chair

There is a young lady we call Sherilee
Who still lives and dances quite airely
She cooks and she cleans
She gardens and preens
And she quilts in her moments of leisure...

This pillow is meant for this chair...
Which sits in my personal lair
It sets off the green and  
makes a strong stand
For daughters who gift their mothers.

The design is so fresh and so pleasant
With the flowers and birds ever present
She knows I love both
And she gave this her heart
Which I feel whenever I look at it.

Looking Back: Mid-Week Memories

It all began as an innocent sighting...from a distance, a long way away, but I knew from that first moment that there was something here for me.

Of course, I had to take a closer look.  

And then I had my first ground glimpse; the first glimpse of The Tower. Just as I am apt to appreciate and admire fine looking bridges and buildings I knew at once that this structure would capture my imagination and my heart.

Every opportunity was taken to drive by and look...

From every possible angle...

And through the gaps in the landscape...

I inspected this tower from a distance, over and over...always anxious to go back for just one more encounter. 

There is good reason that this is the most visited monument on the planet.  Even though it was erected at the end of the 19th century to commemorate the 100th anniversary of the French Revolution, it still holds a spell over the city and draws the people from around the world.  

For those who like a few facts with their photos:

This structure is 1063 feet to the top of its antenna.

Gustave Eiffel was the contractor but had an architect and structural engineers work with him on this project. 

There are only 2.5 million rivets holding this structure together.

On 2 separate occasions a con artist, Victor Lustig, 'sold' the tower for scrap metal.  

The original permit for the structure was to run out in 1909, 20 years after completion but as you can see the people of Paris finally fell in love with it and it stands today as a magnet to all romantics.

The fact remains that once you have seen The Eiffel Tower it is part of your heart.

Au revoir!