Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Be Good To Your Body

2009 by Brenda Colleen Leyland



Have you ever spent so much time at your computer that your body starts to rebel with all that sitting? Do you get sore wrists, shoulders, neck?

Well then, you might find these short exercises helpful. Kimberley over at fitforfaith has put together a series of 17 short exercises that can be done in 10 minutes, all while sitting at your desk.

I'm bookmarking this link on YouTube. Maybe we can exercise together?

Here's to choosing life and making our bodies feel better..........










Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Autumn Is Falling



Courtesy of glittergraphics.com


"The leaves fall, the wind blows, and the farm country slowly
changes from the summer cottons into its winter wools."
~ Henry Beston, Northern Farm 


Miss Kitty is curled up on the sheep skin. It's a purr-fect spot for snoozin' as it's definitely cooler this morning. That means she's left my computer chair vacant, and that's also perfect, as it's time to get the October newsletter out to my clients this week.

Here's wishing you a wonderful day, whatever you've got up your cozy sleeves!

Cheerio,
Brenda



Monday, September 28, 2009

Asleep In The Sun

2009 by Brenda Colleen Leyland

Some books can be read quickly and with little though
t. Others are to be savored and enjoyed as if you had all the time in the world.

Asleep in the Sun, this picture book by Hans Silvester (Chronicle Books, USA, 1997) is such a book! The author/photographer shares a short introduction into why he chose such a purr-fect venture, but mostly the book is a study o
f kitty cats in their favorite positions... the nap.


"Through the companionship of a cat or dog, we humans have a window on a different sort of awareness. Anyone who lives with an animal knows that his or her companion has another notion of time... time is like the air -- without limit. Cats and dogs are never preoccupied with passing time. ....

For those who would learn to siesta well, I advise taking a cat as a teacher. For cats, the siesta is a sacred time which under no circumstances should be disturbed. ....

Let us admire our friends the cats, yes, but above all, let us learn some of their wisdom: for them, to live and to have time are the same thing."


I selected this picture book from my bookshelf as one for my 2009 Reading Challenge. I'm so glad I did. It made me feel a 'warm fuzzy' all over.







Sunday, September 27, 2009

Saturday, September 26, 2009

Autumn Leaves

Source


What a beautiful autumn it's been so far. The warmth of these past few days has been the cat's meow, as it has provided a much needed extra few days of summer to our season. With the blustery and crisper wind today, however, it now feels like fall. Guess we're turning the corner!

Went looking for the music for the old classic Autumn Leaves. Found this rendition by Edith Piaf -- I hope you enjoy it.
 
The falling leaves ... Drift by the window ... The autumn leaves ...





Wishing you a happy Saturday,
Brenda







Friday, September 25, 2009

Time Flies

2009 by Brenda Colleen Leyland

They used
to say, 'time flies when you're having fun'. It seems these days time flies whether you're having fun or not!

Remember when you were a youngster standing at the end of another school term, how long the summer holidays stretched in front of you? They were like a never-ending skipping rope of fun and freedom. That was how it felt at the beginning, but we all kno
w, with each passing year it seemed like someone fooled with the holidays and they got shorter and zoomed by faster.

A few weeks ago I was chatting with my cousin about how quickly life happens. She mused that someone, somewhere must be taking away a few weeks fro
m each year. Instead of four in a month, now there's only two. You start the month, you blink, and it's gone.

I used to feel cheated because the days passed so quickly. It always felt like I was trying to hold the reins of a runaway team of horses. I wanted to savor my life more slowly. I wanted to find a way to capture that childhood sense of timelessness.

Then one
day something dawned on me. Why was I trying to hold it back? There was nothing to be done about it. Let the days fly if they must.

Instead of trying to 'slow' time down, it's more important to learn how to be more selective in my choices and to learn how to make the most of the days I do have, to make a difference to others, to create a little 'heaven on earth' in my corner of the world.

So let the days fly....... maybe we'll learn how to ride the winds of time with the grace and ease that eagles do as they soar far above us.







Thursday, September 24, 2009

We Got Mail!


Yesterday the cutest artwork arrived in my mailbox. A few weeks ago Queenmother had a blog giveaway and it was my name that was drawn. We are a happy recipient!

Now.... don't you think that is the cutest chicken you ever did see?

Tucked also inside the envelope was a very pretty hand painted book mark. As I like to say, you just can't have too many bookmarks! It'll be a lovely addition to my collection.

Thanks so much, Queenmother ... what a delightful treat!


Wishing you all a beautiful day
with a little bit of fun tucked in there somewhere,
Brenda
 
 



Wednesday, September 23, 2009

An Autumn Morning

Source
Went for an early morning walk. The air was warm, balmy, still. The skies were that deep clear blue and everything felt so fresh. Met various residents of the neighbourhood --- the woman out walking her cute dog, a beautiful calico cat watching her world from the safety of her front garden, a brilliant blue jay who plopped on the ground intent on finding breakfast, not to mention the two black crows chattering from their respective perches and treetops.

I sigh with a contentedness.

Why don't I do this every morning, I often ask myself, because I don't. Yet, being out in nature's beauty gives me not only that sense of well-being in my soul, it often inspires me to eagerly tackle some project when I walk back through my front door.

For Beauty on the outside usually motivates me to create something pleasant and lovely on the inside. Whether it's housework or a bit of cookery, writing or sorting through a paper pile, chatting with my mom on the phone, or picking up something to read, my day feels 'on track'. And when I feel that way, I know I'm living my ideal of a beautiful life.

On that note, I'm off to complete some errands, meet a friend for an afternoon ramble, and think about what we'll BBQ for supper on such a gorgeous autumn day!

Wishing you a lovely day,
Brenda
xox








Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Orange Kitten Found

2009 by Brenda Colleen Leyland

Orange Kitten nestled on the deck chair

Remember, last week I mentioned that Orange
Kitten (neighbour's kitty) went missing. Although she's not of our household, she's as entrenched in my heart as if she did belong here, so I was sure praying for her safe return!

Oh joy! Oh bliss! when Rick saw her scampering across our front lawn yesterday. And, today I got to see her with my own eyes. I went out for the mail and she followed me home from her house
.

Apparently she'd wandered awaaaaaaaaay off into another neighbourhood. Someone found her and took her to the SPCA, which is where the owners retrieved her. You can tell she must have been lost and hungry a few days because she's very protective of her food now. (Of course Aunty had give her special treats when she came....... don't aunties always do that??)

On that note, I'm calling it a day.... a happy day to be sure!





Monday, September 21, 2009

Disturbing Dust Bunnies

2009 by Brenda Colleen Leyland

So when are you motivated to clean your house? You know, those times you actually get into it and enjoy bringing order from chaos, making your home pretty and inviting
?


A. When you can see the dust
B. When you are having friends or family over
C. When you are getting ready for a trip or holiday
D. When you return from your trip or holiday

E. On sunny mornings
F. On indoor rainy kinda days
G. The first cheerful day that promises spring has arrived
H. When the leaves start falling and the days grow cooler

I. When you browse a magazine on organizing or decorating
J. When you get something new and pretty for your home
K. Monday mornings, when ev
eryone gets back on schedule
L. When there's that companionable ambiance about the day
ie. you're creating in the kitchen and he's puttering in the garden or garage

M. Decorating for a certain season or holiday
N. All the the above
O. None of the above
P. Other

For me, it's "N" -- all the the above have been known to stir enthusiasm at one time or another. This Monday mornin
g, it's specifically A, B, D, and I.

So, how about you? Leave me a message?





Miss Kitty Helps Too


 

"Hey Purrzy Mom --
I'll help listen for dust bunnies for you!"



Miss Kitty and I wish you a furry-purry day,
Brenda
xox

 









Saturday, September 19, 2009

It's The Weekend!





I'm away for a few days to visit my sister and her family.
Have a great weekend!



Thursday, September 17, 2009

Oh My, Has The Day Flown Already?

2009 by Brenda Colleen Leyland



So where have I been all day?

1. Fighting alligators with my computer, for one thing. Everything started getting soooo s-l-o-w. Wasn't sure if it was my computer or the service provider, so that took up some of my day to sort it out. Seems it was a bit of both.

2. Spent time
peeling a box of ripe apples from my brother-in-law's tree. Bagged and froze them so we're ready for pies and crisps this winter.

3. On hands and knees, there I was with bucket and hot sudsy water, scrubbing down a somewhat icky kitchen floor. What was that mess, anyway? Best not to inquire too closely!

4. I've been pr
aying for Orange Kitten, as my sweet furry neighbour has gone missing since the weekend. It bears not thinking lest heart begins weeping. This tests that place of 'being anxious for nothing but in everything give thanks and let your requests be made known to God'. And the peace of God which passes all understanding will garrison and mount guard over your heart and mind.............. I have to keep casting my cares for Kitten on Someone bigger than me. And the peace does come everytime.

5. Spent time designing a couple of small posters for a wee bookstore in my local church community. I've worked on it for a couple of hours and yet it zipped by as if a few minutes. Creating is such fun! If it wasn't so late, I'd have 'show and tell'.

6. Wrote down about three writing ideas today. Now if I could just sit down and work on them tomorrow. (Lin, could you come and keep an eye on me.... you always seem to stay the course so
well.....)

7. Enjoying the lovely autumn days. It's been beautiful, although it got a bit blustery this afternoon. Which of course reminded me of Winnie the Pooh, because ole Pooh always enjoys a blustery day if his balloon ride get him closer to t
he beehive in that tree.

8. ....................... zzzzzzzzz.......... think my brain went to bed already...... best go too!...... blessings and wishes for a sweet and restful sleep!






Night! Night!


Wednesday, September 16, 2009

All That Glitters

2009 by Brenda Colleen Leyland

I've been having the most fun playing in the world of glitter graphics. These colourful fellows are a sample.

If you are looking for cute, fun or pretty ways to dress up your blog, you are going to enjoy this treasure chest of goodies. The creators offer their items for free! You just need to choose the 'dowload' option and save it to your own files.

*********

We've been out and about today.... hot and warm, just like summer! Yippee!

Simmering away on my stove is Beef Stew with fresh vegetables. It's almost ready for eating with a crusty loaf of Winnipeg Light Rye.

See you l
ater......











Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Kitty's Really Busy






 
 
Must you make the bed already?
 
 
Kitty and I wish you a purr-fectly Happy Tuesday,
Brenda
xox
 






Monday, September 14, 2009

And Our Winners Are...


Book Giveaway Winners!
Monday, September 14, 2009





Our Winners Are......


Staci at Life in the Thumb

The Shell Seekers by Rosamunde Pilcher



Dimple at Meditations of My Heart

Gift F
rom The Sea by Anne Morrow Lindbergh


C-O-N-G-R-A-T-U-L-A-T
-I-O-N-S-!


Staci and Dimple, please e-mail yo
ur mailing address to me.
(My address is in my profile)

Thanks to everyone who participated -- it was fun!


Brenda






The Last Rose of Summer



There is something slightly haunting about watching a rosebush carry on even though she feels the into of frost on summer's last breaths. Though the days grow cooler it pours all her energy into forming yet another bud with no guarantee that it will have a chance to bloom open.

Perhaps it's a good reminder to keep sweetly pouring our lives out for the pleasure and goodness of others, even when frosty days threaten to 'nip' us in the bud.






I believe it's the Irish who have the piercingly beautiful melody to their credit, interestingly named "The Last Rose of Summer". Maybe the composer felt that same sweet pang... listen here if you will.

Wishing you a beautiful day,
Brenda
xox





Sunday, September 13, 2009

Simply Sunday - The Wild Rose

2009 by Brenda Colleen Leyland



The Wild Rose


The rose blooms in the wilderness

Its only gardener the Creator
The petals send forth their fragrance
Till the air is filled with their sweetness

The rose blooms in wildness
Its beauty fringed with rainbow light
Each blossom exuberantly praises the Designer
As it sways on the evening breeze

One Rose bloomed in the wilderness
Its beauty was crushed underfoot
But though the Rose was cast aside and forgotten
Its Fragrant Blossoms changed forever
The world in which it grew.

(penned in July 1988)






Saturday, September 12, 2009

Still Blooming


You can tell the season is changing. The air is crisper, the skies are more intense, and the garden which was filled with so much birdsong not that long ago seems deserted in comparison.

Things are still blooming in our garden. No frost yet -- it always feels grand to think we've cheated Mr. Frost of a just a few more days of summer!



Took these photos the other evening as the sun was setting. Orange Kitten hasn't been around to visit us lately, but Miss Kitty still loves to prowl about and snoop under bushes for friendly mice. Thankfully, I've never seen her with one...!



I'm meeting friends for breakfast. It's a perfect day for it. And, having caught a glimpse of the state of my hair in the mirror, I best be off....

Here's wishing you all a wonderful day!
Brenda




Thursday, September 10, 2009

Whew...I'm Almost Done!

2009 by Brenda Colleen Leyland

I've been busy with my newsletter most of the day. But my sweet Rick just interrupted me! How fortuitous!


There on my desk he just placed a tray with a freshly brewed cup of coffee and a piece of chocolate zucchini cake. See my other site It Tastes Good for the recipe (just posted).

So, before the coffee gets cold and the cake dries out.................

Happy Day!






PS. Had to add a quick comment. I just had a new blogger find my recipe for the chocolate zucchini cake and her response made me LOL.... "
Why y'all gotta mess up that cake by putting vegetables in it?" Thanks, Rondell!




Wednesday, September 09, 2009

Wish I Could Stay and Chat

2009 by Brenda Colleen Leyland

The sun came up a fiery ribbon at a time this morning, and now the air is crisp and sunny.

Miss Kitty, curled in a ball on the chair beside me, is hard at her kitty 'work'. I needs must keep my nose to the 'pink grindstone' clicking away to finish up my clients' newsletters today.

It promises to be a great day and I hope yours is wonderful too.

Brenda


Every time you smile at someone, it is an action of love,
a gift to that person, a beautiful thing.
~ Mother Teresa




Monday, September 07, 2009

I've Been Reading


We're enjoying our days, but my goodness, they've been filled to the brim! But we always have make time for what we loved best, so reading time has been squeezed out. I thought I'd share a few snippets from what I've been enjoying of late.
 
I hope you'll enjoy these excerpts and maybe there will be something that you now want to read too.
 
 

September/October issue, p. 19
"Perhaps nothing else symbolizes the fall season more complete than pumpkins...

The pure, deep orange color the pumpkin lends to recipes adds to its appeal, and its earthy flavor is a natural partner for warm spices such as cinnamon and nutmeg, as well as for the floral essence of fresh herbs like thyme.

Here, we showcase six uses for the classic fall squash---crisp, cheesy risotto bites, savory tarts filled with leeks and herbs, creamy cranberry and nutty pumpkin bread tea sandwiches, a crumbly scone, chocolately turnovers made with flaky puff pastry... consider it our salute to fall's favorite icon."

 
 
Transforming a Woman's Soul, by Heidi McLaughlin, p. 10
"What has happened to the innocent laughter and beauty that came from within us as little children? Girls giggle and laugh when we make faces at them, their eyes sparkling with glee. They adorn themselves in princess dresses, twirl, and dance uninhibited in their bare feet. Because everything delights and fascinates them, they engage their world with creativity, joy, and the giddy anticipation of a great adventure...

Now that we are women, I fear that we have become too smart and busy for this uninhibited kind of joy. Who will rescue us and make us feel beautiful once again?"

 
A Story About True Love, by Don Nori, p. 14
"His heart was full of dreams. Dreams for me, dreams for each person who had ever been conceived. They were wonderful dreams, astonishing possibilities. Such mighty dreams they were, too! Dreams to win, to succeed, to flourish. Dreams to invent, to discover, to write! Dreams to change the thoughts of man, to lead nations, to raise children who would carry the torch of His Life to generations yet unborn..."

Excerpt from CBN on-line: "Romancing the Divine begins where Pilgrim’s Progress ends. A fictional allegory, it is the story of one person’s struggle with his inadequacies and sense of failure on one side, and his longing to know the reason for his existence on the other. He grapples with divine destiny while attempting to gain the favor of the One who has orchestrated his reason for living."

 
 Under Gemini 
by Rosamunde Pilcher, p. 40
"In spite of all that he was brought to a standstill by the unexpectedness of the sunshine reflected in still-damp pavements, by the glittering, coppery leaves of the trees in the square, and by the smell. It was a country smell, of autumn---a suggestion of peat and heather and wild uplands. It blew in with a freshening breeze from hills not after all so very far away. Antony, standing on the pavement with his raincoat slung over his shoulder and an overnight bag in his hand, took a few deep sniffs and was reminded of Fernrigg and of Tuppy. That he found comforting. It helped him to unwind and stop feeling so anxious."
 
 Master of the Music 
Geneva Hiebert, excerpt from back cover
"They've traveled far as they've followed the music to the Master's castle. They way has been difficult and they've arrived as a bedraggled lot of castaways only to find that they've been welcomed with open arms and immersed in luxury beyond their wildest dreams....

When a group of them gathers by the warm fire cracking in the Master's library one stormy night, they naturally fall to telling stories. Each story contains a secret, a lesson, and a perfect picture of the Master's perfect love. Through the telling, they grow to understand each other better and to love him even more."

Wishing you some happy reading time this week!




Saturday, September 05, 2009

Perhaps Perhaps Perhaps With Doris Day







I love this song! And of course Doris Day sings it beautifully.

Here's my invitation to watch it with me and see if this melody doesn't sing inside your head all day ... I've been humming it for days now!


Wishing you a beautiful day,
Brenda
 ♥ ♥ ♥







Friday, September 04, 2009

Birthday Club Outing!

2009 by Brenda Colleen Leyland


My birthday club met for lunch the other afternoon. It was a very warm day, so we enjoyed being on the patio in the cool of large old shade trees.

Our group of four is not a club in the usual sense. It's just that the four of us used to
work together years ago and so our roots go down a long way. We would get together for our birthdays and Christmas even though we'd parted 'business' paths, so somewhere down the line, our get togethers were coined "The Birthday Club".

We're all so different in our personalities and giftedness, but that's the joy of our being together. Each brings her special blend of beauty and grace and great humour to the mix. We all share a lov
e of good food, family, cats and pets, beautiful things, gardens, did I mention eating........to name just a few things.


We loved giving each other lavish gifts for birthdays and Christmas, and then one year we thought it was getting too much to do (life was getting more hectic), so we thought we'd just meet for lunch and not do gifts.

Well, that turned out to be an impossibility. We tried, sort of, but after all, how can you celebrate a birthday without prezzies wrapped in crinkly tissue? Everyone still arrived with bags of goodies (smaller bags, true), so now we just laugh about not doing gifts as we hand round our little treasures to each other.

And I guess that's the fun of it all....... we've known each other long enough to love without censure, laugh without fear, and eat without embarrassment (when we choose dessert on top of that huge lunch).

So here's to my Birthday Club....... Sharon, Heather, Susan........ and to the good ole days in 502!