July 4th – Everyday Magic

One of the most magical moments in my life occurred when I was about five years old. The town I lived in built a water tower, installed the infrastructure, and for the first time ever, my parents got indoor plumbing. I don’t think I ever – EVER – saw my mother as happy and grateful as she was on that auspicious occasion. I have never forgotten that and to this day, sixty some years later, I never turn on a tap, flush a toilet , or pick up a garden hose without feeling the magic.

Our everyday magic๐Ÿ’ž

I vaguely remember not having indoor plumbing. I remember my grandmother having a hand pump by her kitchen sink. I do not remember us having one. I do remember having an electric kettle that we used to boil water for doing dishes. I also remember being alone in the house the night someone forgot to unplug it. The electric cord caught fire and it was spewing millions of sparks across the kitchen – between me and the door. ๐Ÿ˜ณ๐Ÿฅบ๐Ÿ˜ข

A hand pump like my grandmother had.

We did have an indoor washroom. I do not remember the sink or the bathtub or how they were filled or emptied. I remember the toilet. It was basically a BIG can with a toilet seat on top. Inside the can was a metal five gallon pail. I do NOT remember anyone emptying it and I have no idea where it was emptied because I do not remember us having an outhouse. If we did have an outhouse, I have no idea how that was emptied. I remember my grandparents had the same arrangement except that they they lived in a small two story house and their washroom was upstairs.

We would go to visit my grandparents for a full week every summer. I do not once remember their five gallon pail ever being emptied. Nowadays, if any of my grandchildren saw me tottering down a steep narrow stairway carrying a five gallon pail of poop, I am sure they would notice – and remember.

Kids nowadays take notice!

Living in a country like Canada, we are so used to taking conveniences like indoor plumbing for granted. It is unfortunate, because having simple access to an abundance of fresh, clean water is so much more than magical. It is a true blessing. ๐Ÿคฑ

Kat hanging out in the pool. ๐Ÿ˜‰

That is it for my magical moments today. I hope you have a great day and that you have plenty of your own magical moments to celebrate.

Speaking of celebrating, Happy Fourth of July to our family, friends, and neighbours in the USA. ๐Ÿ‡บ๐Ÿ‡ธ

Spring Has Sprung in Saskatchewan!

I did not have far to go to enjoy some beautiful spring weather today. We are experiencing a very unseasonable warm spell. Yay!!!

It is +3 celcius today, a high of +5 expected tomorrow,  with minus single digits forecast for the next two weeks.

Kat and I went out for a while to enjoy the day. I worked at clearing our sidewalks and Kat’s patio path. It got so warm, I had to take off my winter coat to cool down. ๐ŸŒž

Kat hanging out, enjoying the sun.
Kat’s path – the snow is about 5 feet deep in the back yard and on the garden so she didn’t have much room to wander and do her business. ๐Ÿ’ฉ
There was sun to be seen – just kind of hiding behind the tree and some passing cloud cover.

If the beautiful weather was not enough to make my day, I came in to find that Dan had finished the laundry I had started, before heading outdoors. ๐Ÿ˜Š

Keep safe and have a beautiful day๐ŸŒป

Happy Birthday Mark

Happy Birthday to my firstborn – Mark Benjamin. I remember bringing you home from the hospital like it was yesterday. You were so very tiny. Now, poof – forty three years later!

So much has happened in those years. I remember the little boy who refused to walk through puddles. How did you become the man who works construction, camps out with Erin and Dom every chance you get, crawls through the bushes with airsoft guns blazing and spends your spare time on one home improvement project after another? All the never, evers I heard for years and yet here you are. ๐Ÿคฃ

It truly makes me wonder where the next forty three years will take you?

Happy Birthday, son. I will love you forever, I will like you for always!

Parenting 101

My Parents’ 50th Anniversary (1989)

On January 1st, I made a commitment to make PEACE my priority this year. I have made a strong and consistent effort to stay true to my commitment. In many ways, I have made significant progress in becoming less anxious and in making my life more peaceful.

There is one area of my life where I continue to struggle on a regular basis . My problem area is parenting – and grandparenting – and when the time comes (if I do not pull myself together) – it will be great-grandparenting. ๐Ÿ‘ต

The problem (for me) started with my Mother. She taught me, that if you love someone you care about them. If you care about someone you WORRY about them. I am sure that is what her Mother taught her and, God forbid, that is what I taught my children. ๐Ÿคฆ

I love my children and I adore their children. I care immensely about them all. So, when my children or grandchildren face any challenge whatsoever, I worry. If they face a serious challenge, I go into a full-blown anxious meltdown.

I know in my mind that I am over reacting. I have faced challenges in my life. I have made bad choices and I have had to deal with the consequences. I have had my heart broken. I have tried and failed. I have struggled with health and finances and grief. I have survived and, more often than not, I have come through each challenge stronger and better for having been through it.

I know my children and grandchildren are smart and capable and resilient and everything else that they need to be to survive every challenge that they will face in life. I want to stop worrying about them and start showing them that I believe in them. Regardless of the situation, I want to be a strong and calm presence in their life.

I have long believed that “The only thing we have to fear is fear itself”. This quotation has been repeated by many strong men throughout history. It is true and so extremely important! It is the basis of my commitment to making peace my priority this year.

There is nothing more debilitating than fear. Fear makes any challenge – physical, mental, or emotional – all the more difficult to conquer. Fear makes any dream or goal all the more difficult to achieve. I know because I have too often allowed fear to rule me. I do not want it to rule me or my family going forward!

There is no form of fear that is productive or helpful. Worrying about those you love, even your precious children and grandchildren is not productive or helpful. If anything, it undermines their confidence and that is unhelpful and detrimental to their well being! Worse yet, it teaches them to perpetuate this unhealthy form of love when then become parents and grandparents.

Going forward this year, I will continue to make peace my focus – for myself, my children, and my grandchildren. ๐Ÿ•Š๏ธ

Walking Meditation

Peace is my Path

This summer I have done a lot of walking. What began as a means to improve my health and well being, became my favourite part of my day – rain or shine.

Yesterday I came across an article on walking meditation. I found it interesting because I find walking very relaxing and peaceful and because I have never been able to quite capture the essence of meditation.

I have tried meditation several times through my life. I have tried various methods. I just never quite get there. I either get distracted, get frustrated, or my personal favourite – I get so relaxed that I fall asleep.

Walking meditation sounded ideal for me. This morning as I headed out for my walk, I decided I was going to try ‘Walking Meditation’. One step, two step – Kat stopped to smell a post. Start over. One step, two step – some guy on a bike came barreling down the sidewalk and tried to run us down. Start over. One step, two step – busy street, have to focus. Start over. One step, two step – Kat stopped to poop. Give it up already!


Obviously, walking meditation is strictly a solo endeavour meant to be done along a quiet beach – possibly at midnight. ๐Ÿ™„

Since we do not have any beaches in the vicinity and I am sound asleep well before midnight (not to mention Kat has a fit and guilts me out if I leave her behind when I head out for a walk), my quest for a workable meditation technique is still a work in progress.

Any ideas? I am open to suggestions๐Ÿ™‚

More Summer in Saskatchewan

Dan went on his annual golf trip last week.  He and his golfing buddy went down to the southwest corner of the province to play Whitebear and Kenosee for three days.  He took a few photos for me.

Since he has been back he has been getting busy around here.    He replaced the springs on the garage door, which was a pretty impressive accomplishment. He also got the tires changed on the boat trailer. That was not quite as impressive, but it needed to be done.

I have not been too busy but I have been walking my dog every morning. I have also been puttering around the yard, picking fresh tomatoes, cucumbers, and zucchinis.

Zucchini brownies made from scratch – with our own homegrown zucchini.
Our peppers are huge but not turning red yet๐Ÿคท
We have enjoyed quite a few tomatoes but a lot more to come if the weather holds for a few more weeks.
Cucumbers, carrots and peppers
Ever producing Hungarian peppers.

Hope everyone is enjoying a nice summer day!

Monday Morning

Retirement is the best! There is nothing like starting the week with a walk in the park and flowers blooming in our yard.

Walking with Kat๐Ÿ’ž
We were joined by a fine feathered friend
Day lillies
The petunias are a bit lacking this year but still nice to have.
Miniature Sun Flowers
I can’t believe I saved this geranium!
These look like miniature pansies. I don’t know what they are or where they come from but they pop up in all of our flower beds๐Ÿคท
One little brown eyed Susan
Twice as Nice!

Have a great week!

Garden Update

We finally got a couple of decent rains this week and plenty of sunshine. The garden and flower beds are taking off now. Dan finished a couple of his little projects and we have a new regular visitor.

Kat will be eating fresh carrots soon.
The Tiger Lillie’s are blooming.
The frog duo got their horns painted up.
Tinkerbell got decked out with new skirt and wings.
And – we have a squirrel! Yay๐ŸŒž

Hope everyone had a nice weekend. Stay safe and have a good week. ๐Ÿ˜‰

Rainy Day Sunday

We are finally getting a good soaking rain today. Our garden needs it and our house was more than ready for some attention. The dust bunnies were starting to compete for shelf space with the elephants.

From our trip to Edmonton last summer
Christmas gift from son Mark, Erin & Dom
I just thought this little elephant family was too cute to pass up๐Ÿ’–
My pink crystal elephant from Dan
Christmas gift from son Dan & family
My Winnipeg Elephant
Ellie the Elephant – to mark the anticipated arrival of Maddy

Hope everyone is having a great Sunday – Rain or Shine!

Cleaning Up

It had to be done. I went out this morning and got rid of my Covid hair. My hairdresser did her best but I still have a fringe of colored hair that makes me look more grey than white. Next time!

After – obviously ๐Ÿคฆ

A friend of mine recently had her hair cut short and dyed pink. I thought it looked super cute so I considered perking things up with blue dye once my hair goes pure white. Then I thought back to the days of blue haired old ladies who reaked of cheap perfume and decided against that move.

Speaking of older women… When I was a kid my grandmother used to wear a blue paisley dress every Sunday. She would sit down and totally disappear into the pattern on her couch. Just one of those odd memories that stays with you for life.

I returned home to find Dan trimming his ‘Tree of Enchantment’. It looks much neater but it is still too short to actually look like a tree, in my mind.

Tree of Enchantment – Weeping Willow

We have gale force winds again today so I will have to take a break from painting planters. Darn!

Have a great day and remember to keep safe. This virus isn’t over yet.