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...a glimpse into life on Vancouver Island, needle felting, photography, food, gardening, etcetera...etcetera
"Happiness always looks small when you hold it in your hands, but let it go, and at once you learn how big and precious it is."
Maxim Gorky

Friday, December 30, 2011

Song for Friday...for the New Year

Well, another year has gone by with highs and lows all 'round.
I don't do resolutions.
I always thought it was all a lot of hype for things you
could do or don't do all year.
I think we are all a process to be evolving time after time.
I do wish you all the best for the coming year
and hope for your health and happiness.
A new day dawns every 24 hours.
And with it comes the chance to start afresh.
Have a great weekend all...see you next year!

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

The gift...

It's been there since last spring.
I've probably walked by it at least 52 times.
Not once did I see the busy work of tiny beaks 
constructing such a small feat of engineering...
Or peeked inside to gaze down at  the tic-tac sized eggs...
Never heard a peep from baby hummingbirds.
Cuddled in this perfect cup of moss and lichen.
And then one morning last week, 
the light just right,  I glanced up at the exact spot to see it.
 Just a little bump on a branch.
The supporting twig so brittle that it snapped off with no effort at all.
To think that the next day, the wind was so fierce that when I 
walked by the same spot, a large limb had come down 
on the main branch and took with it any trace of where the nest was.
Such a gift, first thing in the morning.
I gingerly brought it home, tucked in the palm of my hand
and nestled it in some Alder twigs anchored in epsom salts, imitating snow.
My elf keeping watch...
 Myself marvelling at such a thing, and he, as if to say
"I've sat many times beside such a nest, chattering with the wee ones."
A birds-eye view indeed.
It seems like magic doesn't it?
To find such a minuscule miracle in such a busy, crowded world...
A precious gift.


Monday, December 26, 2011


I was struggling to find the joy in the season.
I always love this time of year,
but it's different with my sister missing from the picture.
It was another 'first' without her here.
But you know, if you're missing Joy in your life,
you only have to look into the eyes of a child.
Norene and I took my nieces and nephews into the city to see what we could find.
First stop was dinner in Chinatown...
 There's nothing like the lights here on a cold, dark night.
Always a magical place...
Next we strolled down Government Street.
Famous for it's old storefronts and big wide sidewalks...
 Imagine, a shop JUST for Christmas things!
And who wouldn't dream of having one of these Christmas candy apples?!
Or getting a hug from this big old bear?
A trip downtown wouldn't be complete without a visit to my favorite bookstore...
As we approached the harbour, the kids eyes really lit up...
The legislature buildings in all of their holiday glory...
Boats are even dressed up for the season...
Then it was into the Grand Dame herself for a look at all of the decorated trees...
Every year local businesses decorate trees and donate money to local charities...
We ended up at the biggest one in the lobby...
...where Hannah and I put our faces on one of the big silver balls...
On the way back to the van, we stopped at the sweetest shop around...
Rogers Chocolates have been giving kids a sugar rush for over 100 years
and today was no exception.
The beautiful Czech glass lights are my favorite thing in the shop...
After strolling through the Bay Centre and spotting some owls, 
it was time to go home...
Joy rediscovered.
Mission accomplished!

Thursday, December 22, 2011

Song for Friday...good wishes to all...

This season is a most difficult one for my family and I but
we are reminded to have gratitude for all that came to pass.
So many of my fondest memories are those of my childhood with
my brothers and sister and I truly appreciate the warmth they bring to my heart.
I want to thank all of you who have left so many kind comments
on my blog in good and bad times and although I only 
know you through these so called 'pages', 
I can honestly say that you are near to my heart as friends from afar.
May you laugh and sing with your cherished loved ones
and hold them dear to you.
A most Happy Holiday to you all.
of all the Christmas songs covered by various people throughout 
the years, this is definitely my favorite.
(not mentioned is the lovely Sarah MacLaughlan singing harmony with the lads)

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

It came upon a midnight clear...

There's much to see around the towns and cities this time of year,
but there's something special along the seaside as well...
I took my brothers kids out to Whiffin Spit for the afternoon...
There's nothing that Griffin loves more than to run with the kids!
We came to ramble on the beach, exploring driftwood houses...
There were rocks to turn over and crabs to discover...
Even tiny hands held tiny crabs...
But the real reason we came here today, was to see the work of 
many secret elves.
You see every year, without being seen or heard, in the middle of a cold night,
the same tree is decorated on the spit...
People who walk the spit add there own bits and pieces as the days lead up to Christmas...
A lot of pieces are from found objects on the beach so the shore gets 
a clean up as well...
Some leave memorials to those who used to walk the spit, man and dog together...
And then after New Years, as quietly as they came, the secret elves come again
and undress the tree, saving it all for the next season.
The beach always holds surprises, some gruesome, like this whole sheep we found...
very strange.
The birds are out and about, flitting beside us in the bush as we walk along...
Then it's time to go in for hot chocolate.
One of the best parts of walking far on a cold day!