Sunday, November 18, 2018


I woke up Friday morning to a snow-filled driveway. One that needed to be begins the long Canadian winter.

I'm not a big fan. 

In fact here's my 10 things I hate about you (winter) list:

1)   I hate having frozen fingers and popsicle toes. 
2)   I hate the way my nose runs....all the time...when I'm outside.
3)   I hate pushing a grocery cart through a slush filled parking lot.
4)   I hate that I'm always walking the dog in the dark.
5)   I hate getting into a cold car and freezing my butt on a cold    
6)   I hate that sometimes I can't even get into my car cause it's 
      frozen shut!
7)   I hate having to gear up into with many layers in an attempt to 
8)   I hate that I can't ride my bike to work very easily.
9)   I hate all the scraping and sweeping and shovelling....
10) I hate that there are no birds serenading me when I wake up. 

But....then....there is an undeniable beauty to the season.

Just look how adorable house this house looks with it's adorable book swap out front!

The countryside is hushed and still and calm.

And Christmas is coming! How the greens and red pop!

Maybe, hate is too strong a word...may winter, it seems is a little bit more...

Sunday, November 11, 2018


This past week I had a birthday! That means I'm in a reflective and somewhat poignant mood as I consider that fact that I've made it through 55 years on this earth. 

This life is quite a journey! It's like we are on a train ride together. There's lots to see and experience as we move on down the tracks. We meet new people. We hang out with family and friends in the dining car. Some people spend all their time in the bar car, some people keep to themselves. 

But then the train starts to slow down and comes to a stop. The Ticket Inspector comes around - "this is your stop" he says to your mother, or grandfather or maybe your best friend. 

Some people know their stop is coming up. They have their luggage ready to go, they say their goodbyes. But some don't. 

My train is still chugging along - doesn't seem like my stop is coming up too soon. And you know what? I trust the Train; it won't break down and will get me through this life journey.  I trust the Conductor, who knows where I'm going and what's around the bend, even though I don't. And I trust the Ticket Inspector, who knows when my train ride is ending. He might pop his head into my carriage car and say "Hey Cyndi, your stop is coming up soon." Or He may not and suddenly without warning I've reached my Destination.  Father, Son and Holy Spirit - I trust them. Able to rest in this, I'm enjoying the experience, the scenery, the ride. 

Thanks to everyone who celebrated me this past week with gifts, and best birthday wishes and love! You make this journey all that much richer!

Sunday, November 4, 2018


If you are a pet owner, your are probably familiar with this particular mode of communication utilized by cats and dogs. 

It's called....The PAW! 

And it knows how to get the point across! I'm presently working with three different types of paws in my house. 

There are the Dandy-Paws, our newest member. Now Dandy is a Thug and he uses his paws to generally knock things off the counter or table, or dip into my tea or mess up my I-Pad.

They are elegant, fluffy things that usually keep their claws well tucked away.

But they are always showing up, even when I'm trying to have some peace and quiet in the bathroom! These paws are saying  - "GIVE ME YOUR ATTENTION, PLAY WITH ME, LET ME IN!"

But then there are Sasha Paws: Small, elegant and exotic.

She wraps them up all nice and compact ensuring to keep her tail in place. But these paws have little trouble unsheathing their sharp talons. She will take a swipe at whoever is invading her space! These paws remind me that I live with royalty and I'd better respect it. 

Finally I have the Lulu Paws
These here are thumpers. They thump me when they want something to eat and are usually precluded with this face:
If this face does not get the tidbit in a timely manner I get bopped or thumped by the paw. The paw also thumps me when she wants to be petted or when I stop petting her and she feels the petting time is incomplete. Some times when I come home from work, I get the two-paw thump - a complete paws-on that says "I missed you, where have you been, now how about supper?"

I've had pets most of my life and I'm quite familiar with The Paw. Sometime, actions speak louder than words!

Sunday, October 28, 2018


We received a winter warning this weekend. "Heads-Up", Snow has made an entrance!

And it's early, even for Ontario. I generally keep records of first snowfalls each year and on average they land about a month from now. 

Yesterday, Sheldon and I took a trip to Peterborough to visit friends for the day. Our first stop was the market.

The air was cold, sharp and bitter but that lead-grey sky was the real give-away.

We checked out that engineering wonder known as the lift loch. Built is 1904 and still going strong!

By 3:00 there were snow flakes floating around. Like most Ontarians, we don't have winter tires on yet so we headed home to beat the snow. By the time we arrived and slid (and I mean slid) into the driveway, the yard was well covered in white fluff. 

There's no getting around it, First Snow's are stunning.

What a change from last weekend!

I have lots of leaves still to rake, but for now it will have to wait until things dry out a bit.

We all know this stuff won't stick around. Even as I type this up, most of the snow has melted away. But like the Terminator, It will be Back...this is just a winter warning.

Sunday, October 21, 2018


It's inevitable....winter is on her way. In fact I've seen a few snowflakes scouting around and we may have more snow tonight. I'll let you know cause Lulu is on a new schedule where she rings her cowbell relentlessly around 2 am until I get up and let her out. 

Time to begin prepping for hibernation! But first a quick look back. I've had a good summer and the garden faired pretty well. Here is my first rose of the year, landing on June 15th:

And here's my last one.
She was just a shy little bud but the frosty nights were too much so I clipped her off and brought her in. She opened up and smiled at me.

We are finishing off a few projects around the house and this strapping young buck has been doing some sorely needed masonry work.
This guy must have had "mason" tattooed on the bottom of his foot when he was born cause he definitely fits the part!

The Fire bush which really does nothing all summer except provide a great place for the chickadees to gossip in pulls out all the stops and starts showing off in a fiery red ensemble:

And soon all those ruby red leaves will fall off along with the millions of others that will need to be raked up. 

My garden is prepping for hibernation. And so am I. The summer clothes are stored away, the mittens are out in full force, the windows are closed, the red wine and fireplace awaits.  

Last night I made a beautiful pasta dish of cheese tortellini with roasted squash and kale, inspired by this recipe here:

I could, and might eat this every night! It hits all my comfort food cravings. Last week, it was beef stew and I already have a pretty good supply of soup and vegetarian chilli in the freezer. 

I'm in full hibernation prep - how about you? 

Sunday, October 14, 2018


Ever noticed how life tends to have a rhythm to it? Ups and downs, or as Led Zeppelin eloquently said "good times, bad times, you know I've had my share"? Or how it seems to repeat itself? It occurred to me I closed up one of those circles this weekend when we took a trip to Campbell's Orchards, this time with the Little Prince Soren. 

I remember being 4 months pregnant with my son Adrian and hopping onto the wagon for a ride up the hill and cutting down our Christmas Tree. We have been taking the kids here since they were born (and before!)

Ball parking here but I'm going to say Adrian is about 9 and Randi is 12 in this pic at Campbell's!

This weekend we took our Grandson Soren on his first trip!

It is always busy this time of the year and the produce is abundant to choose from

But the main attractions are the apples and pumpkins - you can pick your own!

I went for the Honey Crisp this time

And we hopped on the wagon out for a bumpy, brisk ride out to the pumpkin patch.

We agreed this one looked promising!

Look at this beautiful family....sigh....

So, here I am, from bringing my kids out here 

To now bringing my Grandson - 

Just completing one of life's full circles.

Sunday, October 7, 2018


It's a classic Fall day out there and the house is chilly.   In a couple of hours we are heading to Kingston for our second Thanksgiving meal this weekend. That's right, not one but two celebrations for me! 

It's a good, no, it's a great time to count your blessings. Simple things like good food, your health, a warm blanket and sweater when the house is chilly, peace and a sense of security. 

I personally have much to say "Thanks" for! So, for the record here's a few:
I live in a beautiful country that allows me basic freedoms and rights, that is rich in produce and prosperity - Thanks!

I have amazing children who married amazing spouses! They are beautiful on the inside and out - Thanks!

Then there is this little fella who changed our lives with his arrival in July! My adorable grandson, Soren - THANKS!! (with special mention to Randi and Dan...)

I have a husband who has patiently put up with me for over 30 years and my penchant for dogs (and cats) - Thanks!

And there is so much more- great friends, a good job, music, faith, coffee, wine, flowers, adventures, books - you get the picture. 

Life is fragile, so very fragile. I hope you can take some time today and say Thanks for the simple gifts and blessings you have!