Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Happy New Year to All My Friends!

How auspicious! Just as I sit down to write a note to all my friends, wishing you all a great new year, the TV begins a program from Lincoln Centre with a nod to George and Ira Gershwin. The first song was, "Summertime, And the Livin' is Easy", from Porgy and Bess. That is where I got the title for my blog some years ago! Good omen.

Off to a great start to a new year!

In 2015 I want to:

Read more
Watch less
Move more
Eat Better
Spend less 
Sing every day
Show my love more
Accept what is
Let go of what was
and Trust in God more faithfully.

And my wish for you is that you do not regret all the people who have moved through your life. There have been good people who have brought you happiness. 
There have been bad people who have only given you experience.
The worst ones gave you some harsh lessons but,
the best people have given you great memories.

Tonight I am thankful for you all.
God bless and be well.

Friday, December 26, 2014

A Christmas Post Script...

"It came without ribbons.
It came without tags.
It came without packages, boxes or bags.
Maybe Christmas doesn't come from a store.
Maybe Christmas means a little bit more."
- Dr. Seuss

For another year, Christmas is behind us. Until the very day of, it did not feel like Christmas here at all. Our tree was up,

cooking was done, there were packages under the tree and still Sherwin and I did not feel Christmasy at all.

Our children were all so far away. Our neighbours had the flu and couldn't come for dinner. Were we going to be able to salvage the day?

But the morning dawned. We lit the tree and began slowly celebrating with small steps. And before the day was far along we had spoken to all the children, eaten a yummy dinner and enjoyed spectacular Christmas music and a couple movies of a Christmas nature.

One of our highlights for TV watching was the ABC Peace on Earth Special from the Spencerville, MD Seventh-day Adventist Church.

It was a delight and we watched it at least 3 times yesterday. The above photo shows the Voice of Prophecy quartet, "The King's Heralds", singing "The Little Drummer Boy". Excellent.

Sherwin had opened only one gift the night before which he suspected was a puzzle from my sister and had made a good beginning, finishing it tonight.

Late in the afternoon we went for a walk and enjoyed an encounter with our local javelinas.

There were 10 or 11 of them and we were so excited to be so close our pictures are not without some blur but we also didn't want to get so close they would charge. They did have a couple babies with them.

All in all it was such a low-key, quiet, unusual day but it turned out to be a splendid experience. We found that we could relax and rest and just enjoy each other and the comfort and peace of our home here.

Yes we did have packages to open and enjoy but it seemed that Christmas for us, after a very troubled and turbulent year, was not going to happen. But it did. That is the joyful thing about our day! It did!!

When we just put one foot in front of another and walked through it, we found it was wonderful and everything Christmas should be. We ended the day with more peaceful hearts than we had enjoyed in some time.

"We are simply human beings, 
enfolded in weakness and in hope, 
called together to change our world 
one heart at a time."
- Jean Vanier

And so I leave you tonight with the wish that you could find peace in your hearts.

God be with you and be well.

Sunday, December 21, 2014

Merry Christmas to Me... and You

The first Sunday after our arrival in our southern home we talked about our schedule for the new week/month. I mentioned to Sherwin that I knew what we could do for each other for Christmas. The pocket book doesn't allow for much creative foolery so whatever we would do should be somewhat practical.

I suggested that I needed a book case for my slowly growing library here and he needed a new printer for his office. 

Well, that's great, said he, I can make you a book case! He would build it right into the wall.

My first thought was not at all complimentary to my husband's talent for dumpster diving but as he described what he would do I realized what a good idea he had.

Within 30 minutes of this conversation there was a 5'x3' hole in the wall in the living room with electrical wires staring us in the face!

No problem... Sherwin knew what to do and had the electrics fixed in no time. Speaking of dumpster diving, the truth of the matter was, all the wood and drywall came from a dumpster somewhere here our subdivision. There is still lots of new construction going on in one corner or another of the place and Sherwin knew what he needed. 

He ended up buying some nails, mud for the dry wall, round edge corner bead to match the rest of the place and some new paint. 

And it is a thing of beauty.

Within a week from beginning construction the book case was ready to be used.

What a lovely addition to our house. It looks like it has always been here, done by a professional. Yes, I am very thankful for my ingenious, resourceful husband!

And Merry Christmas to you too. Oh yes, Sherwin is enjoying his new printer in the office.

Good wishes to all and to all a good night.
Be well.

Eleven Years and Two Days Ago...

"The birth of a child 
is a joy to the parent and the world."
- Lailah Gifty Akita

Dear Lu...

When you were born 11 years and 2 days ago I was there, waiting in your Mama's room for the two of you to be wheeled in.

Every day I give thanks to God for you. Grandpa and I are so in love with you!

I love all your excitement about life... always be thankful for your life.

It is great fun to watch you grow!

"Every child born into the world 
has a divine mission to fulfill. 
As the child grows into adulthood, 
he or she 
must act to fulfill that divine mission."
- Lailah Gifty Akita

May your new year be all that you dream of and wish for.

Love and hugs, Gramma and Grandpa

Saturday, November 8, 2014

Something Worth Watching . . .

This will only take two minutes of your time but well worth the moments of peace in this very 'unpeaceful' world.

Thank you, Jeanne, for sharing this with me first.

Be well, and stay in touch.

Saturday, November 1, 2014

Letting Go . . .

When I let go of what I am,
I become what I might be.
- John Heider

Be well and stay in touch.

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Happy Birthday to You, Sherilee!!

October 29!! 

So thankful for October! So thankful for you. . .

"Count your age by friends, not years. 
Count your life by smiles, not tears."
-John Lennon

"And the beauty of a woman, 
with passing years only grows!"
- Audrey Hepburn

For our darling daughter, we wish a happy birthday. 
May your new year be all that you desire.

Love, Mama and Pa

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

What Matters Most . . .

Today this post is dedicated to my sister, Sheila May . . .

With special thanks to the artist, Dale Kunkel for this magnificent painting.

Have a good day and be well.

Saturday, October 11, 2014

Among My Souvenirs . . .

Because I have chosen to use my blog as a personal journal I feel compelled to add this music video as a reminder of the fun music of my generation.

I love a variety of music genres. When this video came across my desk yesterday I couldn't believe how much I adored what they have done here... when the swings start coming out of the clouds I laughed out loud.

The title of the song, God Only Knows, could cover a number of subjects...

Enjoy it.

And above all, be well.

Sunday, October 5, 2014

Eighteen Years Gone By . . .

October 1, 1996

When October 1 came around this year Seth, I was with your Grandpa, fully occupied with getting him safely to the hospital and then home again to recover from his day surgery.

We didn't forget about you though. We talked about you, remembering all our good times together, thinking of your future and wishing only the best for you.

Because we had wished you "Happy Birthday" in other ways this year, I thought I would skip the blog post but I just couldn't. This is probably more for me than anyone but necessary for my grannie-heart.

One of my favourites . . .

but then, which one would I pick if I could have only one?

That is the Pebble Beach kitchen where you loved being my helper . . . 

You were busy, busy, busy writing notes . . .

And kitchen helper on Mayne Island too.

Picnic at the treehouse. 

I remember worrying about you going down that steep hill with Grandpa so I tied a rope around both of you so if you stumbled Grandpa could catch you easy. Both your angels watched over you both up and down that cliff. (Must find those old photos. They are tucked away somewhere in the attic.)

- Kim Goerlitz
That is such a great photo of you and Cousin Maizy.

- Sherilee Coffey
And you and Alan, enjoying the beach. 

I enjoy this reflective one of you on a hike.

- Sherilee Coffey
And now you are a senior, 18 years old, ready for a new year.

Fun to look back, exciting to look forward!!

God be with you, dear Grandson.

"You do not really understand something 
unless you can explain it to your Grandmother."
- Albert Einstein

Happy, happy new year to you, dear Seth.

Saturday, September 27, 2014

Meander Through My Week or Two . . .

Two weeks ago I decided on a whim to re-sign up to a group online who publish a new photo each day. I published a complete year with them back in 2010, I believe.

The community is great... people comment on your photos and you have a chance to meet new people and see what is happening in that world. There are some marvellous pictures published every day and there are discussions about how they have achieved their results.

The following photos are the ones I have published in the past couple weeks. Some...

like these two were from the day I published. Early morning light is definitely 'autumnal' in feeling and I love the delicate colours. I see this side of the property when I work outdoors on the view side.

There were a few days when I was in Victoria on business and did not have a chance to take photos or was too tired or some such excuse...

so I went back into the archives and pulled out photos I took in Mexico like these two.

But I do still have flowers to show off...

"The earth has music for those who listen."
- George Santayana

even though some look pretty dead.

The pampas grass was odd coloured one morning, very early.

Even the lowly tractor got his 15 minutes of fame...

Some days were drizzly...

And some were memory days from southern Arizona.

Don't you love this one playing hide-and-seek with me?

I am most thankful that the bees I disturbed this week in my compost did not attack me... didn't realize that they had made a home in one of my bins.

Another drizzly day...

And flora...

all around me.

I have very few dull moments here... and no boring days. But for all that, and much more, I am truly grateful.

"When one tugs at a single thing in nature, 
he finds it attached to the rest of the world."
- John Muir

If you wish to join an outstanding photo group click here to get to The 365 project.

Whatever comes your way, I wish you well.

Saturday, September 13, 2014

A Spot of Joy . . .

"The morning glories and the sunflowers 
turn naturally toward the light, 
but we have to be taught it seems."
- Richard Rohr

"Later, Gator
In an hour, Sunflower!"
-Alexandra Bracken

Friday, September 12, 2014

Still Happy to be Grateful . . .

Here we are ready for the weekend with so much to be grateful for. I did mention last week that I would/could/should fill a month of gratitude postings. Found it not so easy when I was in town for two days this week but here I am back on my favourite subject. Gratitude.

I am grateful for my Mother.

This may be how many of you remember my Mother. What a pretty lady.

When I think of her, I think of pink. Pink roses, maybe, but mostly just pink. She has favoured that colour over the years.

Some time ago, I was talking with Mother and told her that I had started a list of things she had taught me. Oh, there was a silence on the other end of the phone and she said, Yes?

I used my smiling voice and let her know that I was only writing down the very best lessons she taught me. There would be nothing written down that she would not want to hear. I promised her that. And tonight I am grateful for these lessons.

I cannot say I have learned them all thoroughly... I have not. And those of you who know me well will know which life lessons I still am skirting around with a wary eye.

I am grateful Mother tried!

Things My Mother Taught Me:

1. Never marry a man to reform him!

2. Pick quality over quantity anytime.

3. Attitude is everything.

4. Rise and shine!!

5. We shall see . . .

6. When all else fails, sing a hymn.

7. Play comes after the work is done.

8. Efficiency reigns!

9. As does cleanliness and order.

10. Comfort comes out of the kitchen, dispensed liberally.

11. Follow through.

12. Keep your promises.

13. Say what you mean and mean what you say.

14. Do the task at hand.

There are most likely many more that I just have not remembered. The fact that Mother loves her children unconditionally is one of the most important gifts to us.

We celebrated her 95th in April. After all the dust settled I looked at my photos of the party day and found these interesting shots.

I don't know who picked up my camera and got these revealing photos but they are choice!!

Mother, thinking her own thoughts, not hearing the craziness going on around her in the room, just there with her girls.

This is one of my favourites of Mother and me.

And of Father and Mother...


I do wish we would have realized long, long ago how blessed we really were. Blessed in the important things in life. Too soon old, too late smart!