Tuesday, July 18, 2017

Talking About My Blog and Writing

source: pixabay.com


A person would think I'd lost my interest in blogging for all the posts I'm not writing these days. I mildly protest and do deny it ... I have not lost interest, I have not abandoned my beautiful blog, despite certain evidence indicating otherwise. So, what IS happening then, you ask; if you have not given up on blogging, then what?

It's like this ... I have been focusing my attention and pouring my heart into another writing project. And, I find when that's going on, at the end of the day, there never seems to be enough energy or words left over to create a decent post here. Believe me, I've tried -- you wouldn't want to see the accumulated false starts sitting in draft mode.

As you may recall from recent posts, I celebrated my 60th birthday this spring, and months prior, fully aware the event was drawing nigh, there came a full-blown wish yearning to gather up my childhood memories and life experiences. Since a teen, I have been chronicling my journey, but turning 60 seemed a good time to sort through the boxes of memorabilia, old scrapbooks, myriad photo albums, and dozens of old diaries and journals to tie up loose ends, put things in order, and set it down properly on paper. I understand God keeps such a book of each of our lives; I wanted to write one from my own point of view and how I saw the world growing up and what I thought about it all.



“A day will come when the story inside you will want to breathe on its own.
That’s when you’ll start writing.”
 ~ Sarah Noffke




I also wanted to clear out space in my home -- my closets and shelves -- not to mention in my mind, to make room for possible new pursuits and interests. If I glean the useful bits and pieces from these carefully stored reminders and finally write the story out, whether in a more private, personal document or in several books to share further afield, then I can finally discard them without too much trauma for The Chronicler, who is loathe to throw treasures like that out, and she certainly doesn't want me to forget any of the important stuff.

Agatha Christie's most enjoyable 500-page autobiography took her fifteen years to write. She was 60 when she started. She said, "What I plan to do is to enjoy the pleasures of memory--not hurrying myself--writing a few pages from time to time." I've decided to sort of follow suite, except I don’t plan to take 15 years to write my own stories -- I don't have any mysteries to write in between -- and I can't imagine needing 500 pages to say what I need to say. Even so, it's a much bigger task than I first anticipated. By the way, did you know that Maya Angelou wrote seven autobiographies in her lifetime? Perhaps a person can never really know how much it will take to mine the lessons learned from one's experiences.



"There was another life that I might have had,
but I am having this one.”
~ Kasuo Ishiguro



I don't think I ever told you that my life did not turn out the way I dreamed about as a girl growing up. All my life, I imagined the day when I would meet my prince charming, fall in love, get married, create a home where we would raise a family, and build a lifetime of traditions and memories together. There was no doubt in my mind that it wouldn't come to pass; yet for all the hoping, it did not happen that way at all. I didn't meet my prince charming until I was forty, we didn't have kids, and we each already had many of our own traditions and memories not mutually shared.

As for writing the memoir of this part of the journey, which has been in the back of my mind for ages and for which I have the first draft, I finally came to see I had to live a longish life before I could write about how I found my beautiful life, in spite of those disappointments, first as a single woman for twenty years, and then as a happily married wife, daughter, sister, aunt.

As you can imagine, sorting through 60 years worth of memorabilia is a huge undertaking. But I'm having lots of fun with so many memories flying upward like butterflies (see post for earlier reference They Flew Out Like Butterflies); my study is a veritable habitation for these vintage creatures.




So, my dear beautiful friends, that's what I'm up to these days ... unpacking the memories of a life lived thus far. And not blogging much.

Let me say, I will still post at least once or twice a month; I will get really homesick for you otherwise. I hope you bear with me as I work away on this new '60' project over the months to come.

Sending you love and good wishes
for a beautiful rest of the summer,

Hugs,
Brenda
♥♥♥

PS. I still create spontaneous, tiny posts with lots of pictures
on my Facebook page. You are most welcome to join me there.





Friday, June 30, 2017

Quick ... Before June is Over

ONE



Checking in ... all is well. Enjoying summer days and long evenings, even the cool, rainy ones. Peonies blossom at last. Purple petunias send out their spicy perfume on a breeze. The mock orange seems bent on filling the backyard with a crazy sweetness. Add the indescribable aroma emanating from the evening scented stock in the cool of the day ... and one imagines she must be standing in a patch of paradise.

"The beauty of that June day was almost staggering. After the wet spring, everything that could turn green had outdone itself in greenness and everything that could even dream of blooming or blossoming was in bloom and blossom. The sunlight was a benediction." ~ Dan Simmons, Drood


 TWO



With Canada's 150th birthday almost here, I created a list of a few of my own Canadian favourites. I started the list on Facebook the other day and wanted to share it with you here.

Author/book: L.M. Montgomery and Anne of Green Gables; Stephen Leacock, humorist 
Poem: In Flanders Field, by Canadian physician John McCrae
Childhood Holiday Spot: Banff National Park and Radium Hot Springs
Music: Postcards from the Sky by Canadian composer Marjan Mozetich.
Animated Film: The Log Driver's Waltz by the National Film Board
Musician: Tommy Banks (Pianist) and Angela Hewitt (Classical Pianist)
Music Group: Sultans of String
Male Singer: Ben Heppner, Canadian Tenor
Female Singer: Anne Murray (loved her singing when I was a girl, especially loved her 1970 hit Snowbird
Song: Harvest Moon by Canadian singer-song writer Neil Young
Favourite City to Visit: Victoria, BC and Montreal, QC
Children's TV Program: Mr. Dressup is another iconic Canadian favourite. I can still hear his voice in my mind even all these years later, and I loved his Tickle Trunk full of play clothes and costumes.
The Famous Five: Emily Murphy. Nellie McClung. Henrietta Muir Edwards. Louise McKinney. Irene Parlby (Champions of the rights and welfare of women and children in early 20th century in Canada). Grateful for the paths they paved for us.
Foods: Maple syrup, Canadian bacon, beaver tails (flat doughnut without the hole), Butter tarts, Nanaimo Bars, Canadian split pea soup, Tourtière (meat pie), saskatoon berries (native to Alberta)
Childhood Favourite Gum: Thrills, the purple gum in the yellow box that tasted like soap (really), made in London, Ontario
Childhood Favourite Chocolate Bar: Coffee Crisp, made by Nestle Canada
Sport: Hockey, Edmonton Oilers especially during the Wayne Gretzky era; he is my favourite all time player.
Figure Skating Figures: Elvis Stojko, Kurt Browning, Elizabeth Manley (Canada's sweetheart Silver Medallist in Figure Skating at Winter Olympics '88)
Favourite Sights: Wheat fields across the prairies, majestic Rocky Mountains, Niagara Falls, Lake Louise... Home
Our Canadian Anthem: I am always deeply stirred when I hear Oh Canada sung. Love it and am proud of it.
Canada is my country ... it's my favourite.
Alberta is my home province ... it's my favourite.


 THREE


My sister reminded me of a post I wrote a few years ago about summer, hot dogs, and a very nice fried onion relish we used to make years ago when we'd come back from swimming on a hot summer afternoon with the kids. 

If you are looking for something to jazz up your next wiener roast, here is the link to Hotdogs, Relish, and Remembering which includes the recipe for Fried Onion Relish. It really is delicious.


FOUR


Who can get through summer without reading something to match the mood of the season. Sometimes I want something I've never read before, but more likely, I tend to reach for a book that's an old friend. Even though I have my own copy, when I saw L.M. Montgomery's Anne of Avonlea sitting on the summer recommended shelf at the library, I checked it out. Haven't read it in years. A nicely bound pocketbook, it holds well in one's hand; it also easily slips in a carry all bag... or even in a pocket.

So far, here are a few favourite lines from the book:

“After all," Anne had said to Marilla once, "I believe the nicest and sweetest days are not those on which anything very splendid or wonderful or exciting happens but just those that bring simple little pleasures, following one another softly, like pearls slipping off a string.”
“She seemed to walk in an atmosphere of things about to happen.”

“Oh, of course there's a risk in marrying anybody, but, when it's all said and done, there's many a worse thing than a husband." (This one made me hoot with laughter!)



* * *

Wishing you all a beautiful weekend and a
Happy 150 Canada Day to my fellow Canadians,

Hugs,
Brenda
xox






Friday, June 16, 2017

Mom's Peace Rose Keeps Dazzling Us






My mom's Peace rose is in bloom. And, yes, it's the same rose above -- at different stages of development. It's like the rose has several wardrobe outfits in various hues and shades as it matures from bud to opening blossom to full bloom. Doesn't that seem amazing? No wonder we're dazzled.

The Peace rose has a very special place in history. Its actual name is 'Madame A. Meilland'. I found a very nice article about who developed the rose and how it became so famous. Although I can't imagine anyone not knowing about this lovely rose, if you have not heard about it, you will enjoy reading its lovely story here.

I just went out and took photos of the blossoms that are open today ... her gorgeousness up close. Aren't you glad for eyes to see such exquisiteness? And her fragrance is like a whisper -- one must lean in close to catch the scent. The way a woman's perfume ought to be, not overwhelming, just a hint on the breeze ... soft and sweet and intimate.   


    

But friendship is the breathing rose,
with sweets in every fold.
~ Oliver Wendell Holmes




Rose is a rose is a rose is a rose.
~ Gertrude Stein





Wishing you a glimpses of heaven in unexpected places.

Wishing you peace,
Brenda
xox


Linking today with Floral Friday Foto





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