My blessings this week were centred around family and food. During the week I stocked the pantry with a lot of home canned foods then Friday we headed out to celebrate an early Thanksgiving feast with our kids at their home. Traditionally the Canadian Thanksgiving is celebrated the second Monday of October. All of our kids gathered there as well. We brought the turkey that was roasted in our traditional manner starting in the oven just before 10 am. Once the turkey was in the oven, we headed to an amazing apple orchard then after a short stop at the grocery store we headed back to their house. The grandbaby in true form was the centre of attention. Her favourite spot is in the kitchen so was underfoot for most of the food prep but in a good way. At nine months of age, she scoots up the stairs and gets into everything. She's perfecting her evil eye look that is just hilarious to watch! Our son and daughter-in-law arrived with the first pictures of their soon to be little one aka our second grandbaby. After a very filling meal of turkey with all the fixings we settled in for an evening of simply enjoying being together. Life as always is very good when surrounded by those you love!
Sunday, September 30, 2007
Wednesday, September 26, 2007
Tuesday, September 25, 2007
Monday, September 24, 2007
Sunday, September 23, 2007
- family as always provided love, strength, support and laughter
- video of grandbaby now 9 months old climbing the stairs
- excited news from DS and DDIL over hearing their baby's heartbeat for the very first time
- being able to take advantage of a couple of very good meat sales
- an abundance of local, in-season produce
- several successful canning sessions - my pantry is beginning to burst at the seams
- numerous photo opportunities
- a visit from a spider with a leg span of almost 3" - the blessings were we identified him to find he wasn't harmful to humans (barring my instant heart attack) and he was outside
- quiet reflective time
- two gnew gnomes joined my gnome empire
Thursday, September 20, 2007
Yesterday I took a little more me time. I'm not sure why but I need it right now. The pork shoulder was defatting in the oven and I knew the hamper of tomatoes would wait so I went and sat by the water again. The swan family visited yesterday. The cygnets have really grown so likely are closer to yearlings now. I fed them a little so I could get a few nice pictures. They stayed around the dock until after sunset. As the sun went down I snapped this picture of the mother with cygnet. It was a perfect ending to a bit of a relaxing day.
Wednesday, September 19, 2007
Tuesday, September 18, 2007
I'm into the heavier canning season so spent much of the weekend cooking and canning. Keeping the motivation at a high level can sometimes be a problem this time of year at the best of times but I'm still tired from our move and settling in so fighting procrastination is a daily thing. One of the grocery stores have a sale on pork shoulder roasts at $1 per pound so that has been a good motivator. I canned up five test jars on Sunday (picture and method here) after a slow cook. It was a nice break from canning tomatoes. We are taking advantage of this sale so my husband brought home 16.4 lbs for $16.40 regular price of $53.96, a substantial savings. It's in the oven now slow cooking for canning later this evening.
With no tomatoes to process today and having no one home, I've decided on a little "me" time while I wait for the roast to cook. After filling the bird feeders, I'll do a walk-about the gardens, camera in hand. Then I'm going to settle in on the dock for an hour or two flipping through a couple of home improvement and scrapbooking magazines listening to the sounds of the water and pausing to catch the sights. It should be a very relaxing and reflective afternoon.
Enjoy your day!
Monday, September 17, 2007
Thursday, September 13, 2007
I had a dentist's appointment this morning so stopped at the nearby grocery store to pick up a few things. As always a healthy part of the purchase was fruit and vegetables. While most of my produce purchases is from a wonderful little market with locally grown produce, I have to buy things like exotic fruits, citrus and bananas at the grocery store. For some reason today's shopping stop jogged a small memory tucked away.
Food plays a huge part in our family and always has. Everyone who knows us, knows that and they know how insulted I would be to think anyone ever left our home hungry. I always have two large bowls of fruit, one on the kitchen/dining table and the other on the coffee table. I also always has a huge bowl of vegetables on the kitchen counter. Both are repeated in the form of chopped fruits and vegetables in the fridge. The contents vary but they are always there. The rule in our house is any food is fair game meaning even when the kids were toddlers they were free to help themselves. My philosophy was and still is emphasizing good, wholesome foods. Kids will eat what is available and in our house heavily processed, preservative laden foods full of excess salt and sugar was just simply not available. So back to this little memory.
One day our youngest, then a precocious pre-schooler climbed up onto a chair and sat looking very perplexed at the fruit bowl. Thinking he was trying to choose a piece of fruit, I continued about my kitchen activities. Finally he sighed and asked me if the fruit bowl ever got empty. I said, well sure but because we keep eating it the bowl keeps being refilled. Satisfied he grabbed an apple and went off to find his brothers and sister. A few minutes later it was just a bit too quiet so I went to investigate. He was munching on his apple telling them that the bowl was magic so it would never get empty. We heard the night time raids and did find evidence of them trying to empty the fruit bowl by eating one piece at a time but true to his then their belief the bowl was always filled.
Over the years I've added new fruit bowls like the one in the photo but that one bowl is always out. Our kids are now grown with fruit bowls of their own. I have to smile when I see the bowls heaped full available for anyone to snack on. One of our traditions has been passed onto the next generation :)
Wednesday, September 12, 2007
Tuesday, September 11, 2007
We stayed overnight on the boat Saturday night despite the forecast for rain. The marina we docked at is one we've stayed at several times. It's within walking distance of a few restaurants and grocery store but the marina provides a shuttle service to larger shopping centres. We opted to walk to the near by sports bar for a quiet meal while watching the football game. After dinner we went for a nice walk before settling down on the boat. It's always quite relaxing just sitting on the boat as it rocks gently in the water while taking in the sights and sounds of the marina.
I awoke to the sound of a gentle rain in the early morning hours and of course couldn't get back to sleep. I couldn't go and sit outside because of the rain so finally turned on one of the cabin lights to read through a magazine while my husband slept to the sounds of rain drops increasing in numbers and boat rocked a little stronger. Being rained out when boating much the same as being rained out in a tent when camping but photo opportunities always present themselves.
Not to miss any photo opportunities, the camera was beside me on the cabin's ledge. Looking out one of the port holes, I spotted the lighted palm trees a few feet from our well. I took a few pictures from inside hoping for at least one good one. It's had to tell how good the picture will be from the LED display sometimes. I was rather pleased with what I thought was the best picture from the group. The palm trees sit on each side of the dock ramp. What looks like golden shimmering water is actually the dock beside our boat. The empty well beside us adds to the illusion of shimmering water forming a mirage effect.
Monday, September 10, 2007
Sunday, September 09, 2007
I thought it was about time to change my Blog Your Blessings Sunday banner so I hope you like the new design.
Last week was quite busy and filled with many blessings. We decided to end the week by taking the boat out overnight yesterday. Apparently the rain predictions didn't scare off my husband. We had an uneventful trip there and ate dinner at a lovely little sports bar with great food and likely more importantly the football game on. We took a nice walk after dinner then sat on the boat chatting while the sun set. In the wee hours of the morning it began to rain so despite the rhythm of the falling rain and gentle lapping of the waves, I couldn't sleep. This morning promised more rain so we headed back to our slip. All of our clothes were wet. What wasn't wet was damp so it was a chilly ride home but we arrived safe and sound getting the boat unloaded just in time for more rain. A safe boating journey is always a blessing!
Other blessings last week included:
- quiet time with my husband - talking and laughing while discussing what we need to do in the house
- quiet self reflective time
- family and friends
- a bit of good luck at a casino
- excellent produce availability
- knowledge and ability for several successful canning sessions
- mastering another Photoshop technique
- an encouraging physio report
- blogging friends
- just being
Thursday, September 06, 2007
The days have been quite busy with traveling and canning so last night I decided to sit on the dock and finish reading the final pages of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows. The evening was quite fitting and as the sun set I closed the book. The cool air enveloped me as the sky turned a beautiful orangy red. I sat for quite sometime digesting what I had read knowing full well that I would be re-reading the last hundred pages before going to bed.
Wednesday, September 05, 2007
Tuesday, September 04, 2007
Sorry everyone but I wasn't home to post my Sunday blessings and yesterday was so busy trying to get back into routine, well blogging was a bit on the back burner. I spent Thursday canning and packing. We left Thursday night to travel to my daughter and son-in-laws full of anticipation and excitement. We were going to have the grandbaby to ourselves for the whole day!
Friday, they were ready to go out the door about 8 am while grandbaby played with grandpa aka my dear hubby while I rolled over for a couple of extra z's (that's zed's not zee's). I woke with a start because everything was so quiet to discover both of them snuggled up sleeping on the couch. The noise from the camera caused her to stir enough to open her eyes but she wasn't ready to wake fully yet so she drifted off to sleep again. Grandpa carefully put her on the love seat so I could watch her while he got ready for our big day. She finally woke with a beautiful smile and twinkle in her eye signaling time to roll. I quickly got ready and we started loading everything into our car. Do you have any idea how much stuff kids need today?
We headed to IKEA at Burlington. IKEA is one of our favourite places to shop. First we stopped for lunch with the grandbaby sitting in a cart eating off of our plates. At only 8 months old she doesn't do the baby food routine but prefers to eat what adults are eating. Her parents are doing a remarkable job of introducing her to as many foods as possible so she will eat most foods. Then we were off shopping. Grandpa picked up a hippo he just thought she needed that turned out to be a good call. She is a very quiet and content baby so it was a few minutes before we noticed she had fallen asleep on her new hippo. Gosh, we have so many pictures from this outing! We decided to surprise the kids with a steak barbeque with all the fixings so after IKEA we stopped at Fortino's then headed back to their place. We enjoyed a lovely meal then played Joker as the grandbaby slept happy to be at home and the sleepy fairies fluttered about beckoning sleep. Babies sure can tucker out grandparents!
Saturday, we headed to Burlington for Canada's largest ribfest. This is a wonderful family event that we all look forward to. It was the grandbaby's first ribfest and she ate with all the gusto of the rest of us. If you would like more details on the ribfest check out the latest entry on my cooking blog. Sufficiently stuffed and tired everyone headed to our son and daughter-in-law's for the night. Eventually the sleepy fairies fluttered about :)
Sunday, we went out for breakfast at Cora's. It was a nice, filling breakfast with wonderfully cooked food and fruits. Then we did a little shopping finally stopping at Whole Foods. I loved this supermarket from the get go. It was bright, airy and filled with lots of culinary eye candy! After dropping thing kids off and collecting our overnight things, we headed home stopping in Brantford at the casino where we had an interesting experience along with making money. Then we pointed the car towards home to enjoy the comforts of our own bed :)