Sunday, June 26, 2016


There's a few things permanently imprinted on me that say "SUMMER". 

Like the lazy dusty smell the house gets. 

The song "The Boys are Back in Town" by Thin Lizzy, which I forever have memorized word for word. Just ask me - I'll start rhyming it off. 
And of course, strawberries. 

When those ruby reds start popping up in fields it's like they are saying "move off winter, your time is done! The strong arm of the strawberry has arrived and snow, sleet and cold are muscled out the door.

I headed out to a local patch last Tuesday. The weather was perfect; not too hot with a sun/cloud mix and gentle breeze. The Killdeer sang her song as she zoomed by our hunched over bodies as myself and other berry hunters rifled through greenery and snapped off our finds with a satisfying pop. After about two hours I had enough for what I needed and my sciatica was starting to warn me of trouble brewing. 

Now this berry patch involved parking your car and taking a 5 minute stroll down a farm path, passed the fields and over a little wooden bridge with a bubbling brook. Now how was I to get my berries back to the car?

No problem! I was provided a little red wagon to fill up and toddle back up the farm path!

As I'm strolling along, I come across Sam, one of the locals. Isn't he a handsome fella.

Back home, the work of cleaning and prepping berries begins. Now the strong arm of the strawberry begins to flex. 

I have fresh strawberries in my yogurt with homemade granola for lunch
Take that Winter!

Who can resist chocolate-dipped strawberries!

A strawberry-rhubarb crisp will send all thoughts of snow shovelling to a distant memory.

Finally, if you are still not feeling the summer groove yet, head to a local Strawberry Social. They are everywhere and all you got to do is show up, enjoy the berries and well, be social. 

The strawberries are on stage and they've just dropped the mike! Winter, you're done!

Monday, June 20, 2016


This post is a day late and I apologize to you all but I worked the weekend so it was not until this morning that I had time to put pen to paper or fingers to keyboard as it were. 

Happy belated Father's Day! To all you Dads out there doing the best you can, loving, giving, sacrificing for your families, especially my hubby Sheldon and my own Dad, the intrepid Jack.

Now Jack is passionate about music. Has been since I've known him and as children we were immersed in nearly every musical genre there was on the planet except for Country, and I think you for that! 

One of my Dad's passions is musicals. If there was a musical brewing, he was signing up to be on stage. I've seen Jack perform in numerous ones:
Pirate of Penzance
The Mikado
South Pacific to name a few
Most recently, it was The Music Man.

Now you all know once you go and see these shows the songs stick in your head for a long time. At 15, I helped hand out programs for Oklahoma. All summer I was humming Oh What a Beautiful Mornin', or singing "Ooooooklahoma where the wind comes sweeping down the plan!" I don't think my 15-year-old friends were too impressed.

This past week, we went to see Dad in The Music Man at a local theatre. 

There's Jack, now past 81 and still up there singing' and dancin' with the rest of the cast. Seriously, I could not keep up with all those rehearsals and performances night after night. 

It was a great show and the cast gave it all they got. But my hat is off to Jack. Kudos to you Dad and to your tenacity!

This will likely be the last musical Jack will perform in and it is fitting for it to be The Music Man. For that is truly what he is. 

Happy Father's Day Dad!

Sunday, June 12, 2016


I've yet to meet anyone who has it all figured out. We all stumble along;  sometimes with a confident step, sometimes groping like blind men. Just trying to figure out how to live this life we've been given and how to live it well. 

There is a scripture in James 1:5 "if any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask God, who gives generously to all without reproach, and it will be given him." It doesn't say, He will give to some, but to ALL. 

The kicker is, you have to: 
a) ask 
     b) listen!

It's seems there is insight all around us. My garden, is full of it. 

For example, things are going to change. 

If your situation is bad, hang in there and if your situation is good, be prepared!

When we first moved into our house we had this lovely pond in the back yard with a little fountain

It was a lovely feature and I loved the sound of the water. But it was a stinker (literally) to clean each year and I can't tell you how many dead little birds or moles I had to fish out that had slipped in to their demise. 

So eventually we filled in the pond and inserted a fountain instead.

The birds can now safely stop in for a quick shower and I still have a water feature. 

You will lose things that you love and you will gain things that you love. 

Last year I had a bumper crop of Bee balm

I only have a few stragglers coming up this year but that gave me room invite some new comers.

This is Chad:

Chad the Cherub sat propped up on the side of my pond faithfully pouring water from his little barrel. But the birds thought Chad had a great head to land on and poor Chad often found himself floating face first in the pond. Eventually he took one too many dives and he was injured beyond repair. I really liked Chad!

There are people who I miss a lot. Like my sister Heidi, or Greg, both who never saw the age of 30. There are people who have moved on or moved away. I miss them too. Loss is a part of life, but so is new Life.

Pruning is necessary! Nature is always pushing, pushing, pushing to take over and I'm always pruning, pruning, pruning to take it back. You will be pruned, and it will hurt but the rewards are worth it.

Life is full of seasons, not just the sunny summer but winter:

And Fall

And in each one there are new moments of joy, growth and insight. 

If you are trying to understand something, like how to raise that strong willed child or to let go or hang on, or whatever, don't be afraid to ask for wisdom. It is there for the taking, probably right in your own back yard. 

Sunday, June 5, 2016


I want to tell you a story - a true story that happened to me and started when I went on a coffee break. So settle in and read on!

About a month ago I was at work. Morning coffee break was upon me so I rounded up my mate Shirley and as it was a lovely day in May we went for a walk-a-bout to pick up coffee.

As we were coming around the corner of the Mall where I work, there was the car of my dreams!

"Shirley!" I said "I Love this car. This is exactly the kind I've wanted."
"It's pretty nice!" comments Shirley.

As we are coming over for a closer look a fella suddenly jumps out of the car. Unbeknownst to us he had been sitting in said car and had overheard our conversation. 

"Do ya like this car? It's for sale! You want to buy it?"

"Well...."I started to stutter....

"Here! Hop in! I'll hold your coffee!" Next thing I know, I'm sitting in this beautiful Mini Cooper. He gives me all the details: 2012 Countryman Manual (perfect), heated seats (perfect X2), two sunroofs (perfect), comes with snow tires (whaaattt?) etc. etc. He is a born salesman. 

"Want to take it for a drive?"

"No, thanks, I really got to get back to work but it is a beauty!"

"Well let me give you my number and if you want you can take it out later!" 

He scratches out his number on an old receipt I had and off Shirley and I go. 

Later I'm telling my husband about this little surprise meeting. I also mention between my investments I have enough saved to pay for half of the car. This could be a reality!

"We should give him a call and take it for a test drive." says Sheldon. No complaints from me!

Eventually, I fish out the old receipt and call. Turns out the chatty fella in the car is a friend of the owner and he was borrowing it that day. He directs me onto Steve, the actual owner. The Plot thickens.....Steve does not have the Mini for sale, he was considering trading it in, but he's willing to let us take it for a spin. 

Now Steve is the most amiable Canadian you will find on this side of the border. You just want to take him home to meet your Mom. No, scratch that; meet your Grandma! We discuss details and bippity-boppity-boo, along with the complete draining of my investments, I'm now the owner of the car of my dreams.

I decided to call it "MiCi" cause when I hop in I just want to sing "Oh Mickie you're so fine, you're so fine you blow my mind Hey Mickie!  Hey Mickie!"

So that's my story and I'm sticking to it. And it just goes to show you, you never know what can happen. You may be going for a Mc-coffee and end up with Mc-MiCi!