Saturday, March 30, 2013

Easter on the Canal

Today we celebrated "family" in our small home! We fed 6 grandchildren, their parents, their grandparents, and one great grandpa. How blessed we are to have such a wonderful big family!

While we were eating, another visitor came by, and afterward, little ones were helped by bigger ones to gather eggs left by Mr. E. Bunny, himself!

Easter celebrations have evolved since I was little. I remember Easter morning.... Dressed up in white knee socks, white gloves, a pretty dress, a hat, Easter morning was always spent in Church...with family.

I am so grateful that my dad is able to share a meal with us this Easter. I love him with all of my heart. He is my hero.

And so I leave you with pictures of the whole gang.... Happy Easter everyone!

Sunday, March 17, 2013

An Absolutely Fabulous Day....

.....made even more special by a visit...and a farewell.

Today we said " farewell" and "till we meet again" to an absolutely fabulous lady. Doreen was not only a neighbour, but she was a friend forever.

Doreen Edith Daniels. She was mom to three, auntie to two, grandmother to two, and friend to so many.

There are those who teach their faith, those who preach their faith, there are those who only talk their faith, and then...there are those who walk their faith. Doreen was a walker. She lived her faith, and taught through example.

Doreen was also a dancer...and to borrow the words of a friend, I believe she danced from this "room" to the "next".

I know Doreen's life was difficult at times. Was her life any less difficult than ours? I think not...but unlike so many of us who count our injuries, Doreen chose to count her blessings.

Her niece reminded us, that when Doreen was asked how she was, she always answered with,
" I. Am. Absolutely. Fabulous!". Was she? I thought she was...but I know there was times when she she chose to feel that way in spite of her circumstance.

Her Funeral was lovely. The pews were filled to overflowing, and I believe that this, in itself, was a testament to the person who was Doreen. How wonderful for her family, to be able to look out onto that gathering, and know that their mom had touched so many lives. How wonderful that they could honor their mom with favorite songs sung only for those who loved her. How nice that there is a place they can lay flowers in her memory.

In her memory, I have challenged myself to see my world as a "fabulous" place, in spite of the circumstance.

Thank you, Doreen. Rest peacefully.

Thursday, March 14, 2013

A Finish!

Another day....another dollar.

Granddaughter, Alexia, came for a sleepover and visit with her nana and papa. we sewed pillows, tried finger knitting and cut out a doll pattern. Our last activity before heading home was a nature/spring hunt. Alexia loves evidenced by the fact that she stated several (many) times that she misses being at school this week. She drew up a spring check list before we ventured on our walk, which included things we needed to watch for.

The day was bright and sunny, but a chilly wind was blowing...a reminder that we would still see winter for a little while. We found crocuses and daffodils poking their noses through the soil. We witnessed water flowing in our channel, and ice and snow melting. We found several trees In bud. Birds were noisier. Geese were pairing, and Mergansers have returned.

The sole sighting that, for me, heralds the arrival of spring, was not witnessed, and so, Alexia and I have a challenge. We are to look for a Robin, and "report back." as soon as one or the other spots one.

I woke to a chilly home this morning. Our stove had run out of pellets. Spring seemed so far away, I thought, as my feet hit the cold floor on my way to the coffee pot. I perused my photo library while drinking said coffee, and have shared the following photos taken 2 weeks apart, through my living room window. Both bear witness to the fact, that winter IS on its way out. Thank Goodness!!!

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Just One of Those Days....

Some days are better spent in bed.

It has been one of those days where I have journeyed from one point of contention to another. I have "tiptoed" where I'd rather "trample." I feel as if I am going absolutely mad with all the things I'd love to say but don't...can't...won't.

“The path of peace is not a passive journey. It takes incredible strength not to open a can of 'whoop-ass', justifiably, when ones button is pushed.”

― T.F. Hodge, From Within I Rise: Spiritual Triumph Over Death and Conscious Encounters with "The Divine Presence"

It will be an early bedtime for me.

Sunday, March 3, 2013


A blogging friend posted a lovely tribute about a member of her community who had made her a most beautiful quilt several years ago. Apparently this lady had celebrated many special occasions in her community by making quilts for others. I questioned Sue about where she had lived, and assumed that she had come from a small town where "everyone knows your name." She corrected me. This lady was a part of Sue's church community. In turn, Sue asked me about where I last felt a sense of community...which was at my Toronto home.

I was born in the Silverthorn district of Toronto. Until I was eight, I lived in the home my dad built. It seemed at the time, a very large two story home. Everything seemed large in those days. My dad was the tallest man I knew. My grandad who lived in the basement with my nana had the biggest hands. My nana had an enormous heart.

I only remember one door into that house...the front. I believe that the steps up to that door were enormous. I might think otherwise should I see that house today...but large is what I remember.

Our house was nestled between the homes of my aunties and uncles. Everyone's was an "aunt" or an "uncle"on that street. We were not permitted to call our elders by their first name. My real auntie lived several houses away, and she cared for my grandmother until she was no longer able to manage her care.

I remember grandma's home as long and narrow. At the end of a long hallway was my grandmother's room where she seemed to spend most of her time. I have visions of her at other times, sitting in her wheelchair in the kitchen that looked out upon her back garden. When my granddad was alive, I have been told that he had the most beautiful English country garden.

While the details of life at that time are sketchy, what I remember most are the memories of the senses. I remember the new puppy smells of my grandmother's home. I remember the taste of tar that had dripped onto her front stoop. I remember the sorrow I felt when I came across the little bodies of fluffy baby birds that had fallen from the eaves of the house my dad built. It was in the backyard where we buried those little birds that I learned that sunlight on tears causes momentary blindness.

Our neighbors were as parents in those days. If we misbehaved, my parents would know about our behaviour before we arrived home. The expectation for conduct seemed the same in every home.

Every Sunday we attended the same church my parents had attended for years. Again, there, we're many "aunties" and "uncles.". I believe that the love I felt in that community was so thick that it was tangible. That was a community where everyone truly did know my parent's and brother's name, and my grandparents' names.

We moved, when I was eight, to the Etobicoke district of Toronto. There have been many moves since, but I have not found that feeling of community since leaving Silverthorn.

I am grateful that I have these memories. I am one of the lucky ones that do. I often wonder, given the frequency that people move about, if they will ever know a sense of community, as I once did.

Where and when did YOU last feel a sense of community?