Sunday, December 22, 2013

Eclectic Tastes

Wanting to wish everybody a 
Merry Christmas
Joyeux Noel
Happy Holidays
Happy Hanukkah
Feliz Navidad!

I suppose John Lennon would be looked upon as being naive
for today's standards, but I still believe his optimism
and hope has a message for us all today as well.

I will not be posting till after Christmas,
until then have a wonderful break from it all!!

Friday, December 20, 2013

Christmas Past

Christmas.....can't live with it, can't live without it!!

It is such an emotional time for a lot of people.
There are so many expectations coming from all directions
as most people just give in and go along with the mob.

Ron and I have been simplifying the whole 'Christmas Thing'
for the past few years, attempting to get back to those early years in
our relationship in Vancouver.

We moved there after we had sold everything we owned. We left our jobs.
 Our camper van became our home for the next six months.

The old fuzzy photo below shows Ron and I Christmas Day 1979 in our 'flat' in Vancouver.
We were 'poor', no full-time jobs. But,
we were happy!

We made that sofa/sectional which served as our chairs for 
that coffee table we also made......from discarded lumber that our landlord
upstairs threw out after renovating his flat.

This was also our first time away from our respective families for Christmas.
We started our own traditions that year.

Actually I like the idea of Christmas....that being, time spent with family and friends.

Too bad it has turned into a huge commercial money-grab.
Some people find it just too much and can hardly wait for it all to be over.

Thursday, December 19, 2013

The Mail Must Go Through

When we lived in the city we had our mail delivered to our house.

Living out in the 'country' now, we get our mail from 
a 'community mailbox'.

We don't have to walk very far either. 
So when Sophie gets a chance to come along
she is beyond she is about everything!

Very icy the other day as Sophie watches for any neighbourhood dogs.

I heard just yesterday that the cities across Canada may eventually 
lose their home delivery service by Canada Post
and have these 'community mailboxes' too.
People are not happy about this.

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Winter Garden....part two

After lunch yesterday, Sophie and I took a look around the garden:

As she tends to do, Sophie leads the way.

Temperatures have been well below 0C (freezing point)
and thus the ice remains on these large boulders in the garden.

The low afternoon sun in the western sky creates wonderful shadows.

Sophie 'hiding' behind this Corkscrew Witch Hazel tree.

Close-up of 'Corkscrew' branches against snow backdrop.

Must be Christmas!! lol
Having fun with frost on shed window....looks like ferns.

Peeping out....

One whole side of this Linden tree is a sheet of ice.

'Seed-head' from ornamental grass.

Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Winter Garden

Yesterday morning Sophie insisted I take her out in the garden after her breakfast:

Snow mounds.

The snow had a thick crunchy crust top layer.

Sophie leading me under the grape arbor.

Frozen base of Spruce tree.

'Freeze-dried' Hydrangea blossom.

Old garden tool.

'Teddy Bear' Rhododendron soaking up the sun.

Monday, December 16, 2013

Contemplative Monday

The following quote is from 'Heart Advice, Weekly Quotes From Pema Chodron'. (click)


"I try to practice what I preach; I'm not always that good at it but I really do try.

The other night, I was getting hard-hearted, close-minded, and fundamentalist about

something else, and I remembered this expression that you can never hate somebody

if you stand in their shoes.

I was angry at him because he was holding such a rigid view.

In that instant I was able to put myself in his shoes and I realized, 

'I was just as riled up, and self-righteous and closed-minded about this as he is,
We're in exactly the same place!'

And I saw that the more I held on to my view, the more polarized we would become, 

and the more we'd be just mirror images of one another----

two people with closed minds and hard hearts who both think they're right,

screaming at each other.

It changed for me when I saw it from his side,
and I was able to see my own aggression  and ridiculousness."

Sunday, December 15, 2013

Eclectic Tastes

I will be playing this all day today as we are having a nor'easter
here in Nova Scotia....along with the other Maritime provinces.

Enjoy your Sunday everyone.

Saturday, December 14, 2013

Saturday Morning Post

Here, there and everywhere this week:

Incredible skies/clouds this week.

Ron and Sophie doing their dance!

At my brother Dennis' birthday dinner. He is with Jackie his partner.

Check this out!! Ron trying to tell me something?
He just happened to get inside this photo orb.

Defined horizon.

Surviving dune grass....not for long though,
as a nor'easter is heading our way tonight and tomorrow.

Reflections in late afternoon sunset.

A different angle.

A 'sun path' stretching across the harbour from city to city.

All coming from those windows in Dartmouth.

Christmas in downtown Halifax.

Christmas in downtown Dartmouth (city across the harbour).

Ron getting some groceries before heading home.

Friday, December 13, 2013

Getting To Know Me

I was reading John's post at 'Going Gently' (click) the other day
and he was answering a 'questionnaire' which he found online.
I learned a few things about him that I hadn't known before.

Maybe there is something here that you learn about me.

1. If there's one chocolate left in the box, do you have to eat it, or can you leave it sitting there?
I have to eat it!

2. What do you want to remember most of all, if you survive to be very old?
My name!

3. Would you enjoy being a very rich and famous celebrity?
Not at all. I love my privacy.

4. What piece of music do you personally find most emotionally moving?
Most of Erik Satie's pieces.

5.  How do you deal with depression, anxiety and bad times?
I have learned to look at them straight in the face 
and not run from them. Life can be difficult at times
and facing these times works for me.

6. What do you love doing that bores everyone else stiff?
Going to auctions and thrift shops.

7. Did you ever encounter an inanimate object that seemed to have a will of its own?
Sometimes, in winter,  my car will do what it wants and I can't do anything
to change its 'mind'!

8. What is your very favourite hotel or restaurant?
It would have to be Celtic Lodge in Ingonish, Cape Breton, Nova Scotia.

9. Do you think prisoners who have committed particularly vile crimes should be segregated in jail for their own safety?
Yes I do. As much as they have committed vile acts on other people
they are still human beings.

10. What do you wish you had known when you were 18?
I wish I was more insightful and focused on what
I wanted to do with the rest of my life.

Thursday, December 12, 2013

Happy Birthday Dennis

On Tuesday evening Ron and I (Sophie went to her 'day-care') met up
with my brother, Dennis and his partner, Jackie,
at a new restaurant in Halifax called Edna.

It was Dennis' 63rd birthday.
We drank, we ate, we chatted, we laughed.

Happy Birthday Den!

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

A Pivotal Part Of Our History

In 1917, in the narrow section of Halifax Harbour, two ships collided. One was filled with ammunition that was heading for Europe to WW1.
This event is known as the Halifax Explosion. (click)

It was the biggest man-made explosion to have ever happened up until Hiroshima.

Thousands were killed immediately and more were injured seriously.
Homes were flattened especially in the north end of Halifax and Dartmouth.

My father was born a year earlier and remembers being told that his mother 
had to wheel him to the Central Commons where everyone was gathering.
It was a cold and stormy day on December 6th.

My father is one of the very few remaining survivors of this devastating explosion.
He is 97 years old and a few members of his extended family (cousins)
either died immediately or shortly after.

This memorial  (click), for those who perished, is located in my childhood neighbourhood
in Halifax's north is called Fort Needham.
We played here as kids way before this monument was erected.

A few days ago we were up at 'the Fort'  with Sophie.

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