gratitude sunday

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gratitude — the state of being grateful : thankfulness

On this Gratitude Sunday, I am grateful for:

  • An almost 70-degree (!) temperature turnaround today from earlier in the week — to be able to sun oneself outside without wearing a parka, a hat, a neck warmer, thick gloves, snowboots, etc. this afternoon was pure joy, perhaps even more so knowing the warmer weather will be very short lived
  • Our pumpkins: Last year, we decided not to plant any pumpkins because we still had plenty preserved from the previous year’s bumper harvest. However, a few volunteer plants grew and proved even more productive than the previous crop! (We grow primarily this variety, btw.) Which has meant a revolving winter menu of pumpkin soups and curries, as well as pies, custards, and the super delicious pumpkin spice cake James baked this week — yum!
  • Receiving the answers I needed to a couple of important questions I’ve been asking myself the past couple of months.
  • A fun time with my friend Patty Monday afternoon
  • An uneventful operation, without any complications, for our puppy Leni, who was spayed this week. Of course, the real challenge is keeping her activities limited for yet another week when her internal drive is almost always set to go, go, go! 🙂
  • Remembering we always get more done and faster when we work together as a team
  • Our imperfect, in need of a good clean, but always comfy-cozy, home — some folks close to us learned this week they have to leave theirs rather unexpectedly in a few weeks, which made me all the more grateful for our own, and reminded me never to take it for granted
  • Catching great sales this week on tea towels and underwear —  clean “drawers” for spring has become an annual tradition 😉
  • Our cabbages: Last year we decided rather last minute to plant some extra cabbage. Like the pumpkins, we had great success with the cabbages, which also stored well in our cellar. Last month, we fermented the remaining into three types of kraut, all of which have turned out very well. And for the first time almost a year, our crocks are taking a brief vacation (until after the spring harvest!)
  • The extra hour and a half I gained this morning: For reasons too complicated to go into, yesterday I changed the time zone on my iPhone, which double-duties as my alarm clock. I promptly forgot to change it back, however, and thus found myself on Newfoundland-Labrador time for half of the morning, before a totally confused James set me straight. The 90-minute gift was one of the best I’ve received in a long time! 🙂
  • Chocolate peppermint cookies
  • The hyacinth that I’ve been forcing bloomed this week — yet another reminder that spring is only 26 (!!!) days away!
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gratitude sunday

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gratitude — the state of being grateful : thankfulness

On this Gratitude Sunday, I am grateful for:

  • A warm, dry shelter, which is often taken for granted yet is not a given for too many people in the world
  • Hearing from one of my good friends and making plans to reconnect soon
  • Discovering a new diner with James — we missed diners so much when we were living in Spain, so we’re now always on the lookout for good ones 🙂
  • Two major scores on Craigslist! (will be revealing some of the goodies in the coming weeks!)
  • A quiet Valentine’s Day at home with my loves — I wouldn’t want it any other way…
  • Especially as my main squeeze made me samosa-inspired pasties and a blackberry crumble for dinner 🙂
  • These two bluebirds who showed up at our feeder yesterday; they’ve been on the property for several years but always kept their distance. But I reckon the desperate weather conditions changed their minds
  • Much cheaper electric bill than expected!
  • Mugs of hot chai
  • A relaxing but productive afternoon with my parents
  • The folks who have worked so hard this winter again to keep the roads clear of snow and ice
  • The extra bits of daylight that assure us spring is not so very far off, despite the thermometer reading of -2F!

warm bellies

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We’ve been splitting and stacking extra wood today to make sure we’re fully stocked for the seriously cold blast expected this weekend (-27F/-33C!!!). It’s already on the chilly side, although the work is a good distractor. 🙂 So is a full belly full of what I call warming food. To be honest, by the time the middle of February rolls around, my appetite for soup is waning. Which means I have to start looking for other quick-to-make alternatives. Like today’s polenta topped with a sauté of garlic, greens, Italian seitan, and diced tomatoes, with a sprinkling of parmesan. From start to finish, 20 minutes….although the happy warm belly afterglow is guaranteed to last much longer. 🙂 Keep warm, friends!

yarn along

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Today I am joining Ginny’s Yarn Along, sharing what I have been making and reading this week.

On the “make” front, to combat the gray and snowy winter landscape, I am continuing to work in bright, springy yarns (this is an organic cotton/wool blend), and the focus is on building up my stock of infant and toddler beanies in colors befitting the upcoming season.  🙂

My book reading pile this week has been neglected — too  many deadlines and other business going to afford me more than ten-minute reading breaks. Which is when I typically dive into my magazine stash (which I confess is formidable!) — an inexpensive little luxury that I still treat myself to. 🙂

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seed

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seed by chung dong-muk

while picking bamboo shoots

it occurred to me

that it would make me happy

if it were me

standing here and not you

on the day the sun set so fast

i returned to that place again

you were not there but i was

and on a snowy day

when i returned to see you once more

finally i could see that

you were not there but you were

standing in a row and winding

along a row that leads to that spot