Monday, February 22, 2021

Monday: Miscellany of Musings

"You’ve got to live this life with joy, I’ve learned.
You’ve got to transform the ugly stuff into love."

Do you ever wake up in the morning to find your thoughts going in a half dozen different directions? I often try to capture these motley fragments in my journal; they are the Liquorice Allsorts mix in words. Many bloggers would aim to select one as a theme and create a post around it. But, let's just say, I'm not quite normal on that front. I'm more of a letter writer kind of blogger—several paragraphs of this and a few lines of that, newsy chatter and various quotes, all wrapped up with an affectionate sign off. I don't much write real pop-in-the-mailbox letters anymore, I think, because I basically pour out my heart and creative energy here, there's not much left for paper versions. I still write cards and notes, just not those long Jane Austen chronicles anymore.

So, in my usual fashion, I've brought together an 'allsorts' collection for you on this Monday morning. I always have the hope that, amongst the assortment, you'll find your own favourite soft morsel for the day, thus making your visit worthwhile.

ONE: Lassitude (n): a state of physical or mental weariness; lack of energy

I came across this word lassitude while reading from my poetry stash the other day. Having only a vague idea of its meaning and to better understand the poet, I looked up the definition. I was amazed to find the word perfectly described my state of being this past week: physical or mental weariness; lack of energy. Yes, that's how it felt, more mental than physical, although not sleeping through a few nights didn't help.

So I spent time in the company of books. I read a lot and tried to fill my thoughts with good vibes, beautiful imagery, and cheerful messages. With the weather much warmer, I resumed my walks around the neighbourhood which made me feel more alive. So, when I woke the other morning and noted the weary presence had lifted from my shoulders, I was happy, to say the least.

I have said on numerous occasions that in my own world, my own life continues to unfold gently and pleasantly, even in the midst of dipsy-doodles we must navigate during the pandemic. Because there are so many sad things going on around us, I do sometimes wonder if being happy going about my own business is being too thoughtless of others. In my defense, I do care and will often whisper prayers for the pain others are going through, hoping things will get better for them. These words by @Iconawrites on Twitter confirm to me why we must keep as cheerful as we can:
"Being joyful is not the same as being naïve or frivolous. It does not mean you are not aware the world is burning (or freezing). It means refusing to let the darkness consume you until you are too weary to fight back. It means steadfastly choosing hope.
Smart girl. With my heart refilled, I get up, dust the lassitude remnants from my shoulders, steadfastly choose hope, and once again pick up my reason for being, in the words of author Shawna Lemay, to transform ugly stuff into love. I always hope that my pink frosting cheerfulness trickles out and makes someone feel a little less overwhelmed.

TWO: Longing, Longing, Longing

I'm longing to see my mom again in person, face to face, to hold her hand and hug, hug, hug her. It's been almost a year now since I've visited Mom in her home. Talking on the phone is all fine but it's not the same, is it? I'm missing all my family, as many of us are these days.

I'm longing to meet with dear friends, to enjoy a cup of tea at the kitchen table or over a hamburger at the local eatery, where we laugh and share a chat, and not worry about masks and social distancing. 

I'm longing to enjoy some 'wild fun' again, by which I mean having a proper visit to our lovely library and not just pick up the book on hold and scoot away quickly—when we can browse book shelves at our leisure, share space at a library table with fellow book nerds, flip through piles of magazines, and breathe in that bookish library smell.

THREE: Links I'm Enjoying

Sometimes I want something deep and moving to listen to or watch. Other times I just want something light and easy on the mind. This past week I bumped into these YouTube videos and I enjoyed their gentle rhythm so much, I had to share.
1. Arne & Carlos from Norway. They are Scandinavian textile designers and authors. What really caught my eye was their video on making a simple crazy quilt patch square. I do love crazy quilts; they made it look so easy, it almost tempts me to get out some scraps and ribbons and play. From the handful of videos I've seen so far, already I feel a part of their quiet and gently creative world. They also chat about knitting, books, their life in Norway.

2. From there I connected to Kate at The Last Homely House. I slipped into her online world watching her make a Scrappy Log Cabin Pillow in its gorgeous colour scheme. In just an hour, she had a finished pillow to give to a friend. I'm not a quilter, but I had great fun watching her do what she loves. She and her beautiful kitty live somewhere in north England. Click HERE for Kate's intro video.

3. Jacque Pépin American Masters video series. I love his French accent as he shows folks how to make some lovely recipes, I believe, from his own kitchen. In this video he makes his famous crepes. Quick and simple with his own tips, I always feel inspired and hungry after watching him.

FOUR: A Good Reason To Read Fiction  

Looking out at the world around us, I feel sad there seem to be so many folks who have little or no compassion or empathy for the pain of others, merrily pushing their way with nary a thought for the plight of fellow citizens, as long as their own needs are met. We can't solve that problem outright but maybe there is a solution in a round about way. They should read more to enlarge their inner horizons, because I do believe @Iconawrites when she says:
"Reading fiction is not a just form of entertainment. It builds empathy by exposing you to the inner life of someone else, and to experiences outside of your own. It drills into you - page by page - that other people are every bit as human as you are."
There... if you have ever felt a little guilty about indulging in your love for fiction novels, now you have a very good silence any nagging thoughts and read on, best beloved.💜📚

* * *

Note: I'm going to take some time away from my blog. I want to focus these next few weeks or so on some projects I need to get done here at home. Time's a fleeting and I haven't made great strides on my winter projects yet. Yikes! It's much easier to focus when I don't have to split my time here and there—alas, I cannot multitask the way I once could. If I get too homesick for you all, I'll be back sooner than later. I'll work hard. In the meantime, be well and keep safe. 

* * *

Wishing you beauty and heart's ease.


Credits: All photos are from


  1. Happy Monday, Brenda! I will miss reading your posts while you are away! Sending you wishes for hope and joy!

  2. Oh, I empathized with SO much of this post...the longing, the worrying about seeming too content in spite of..., which may appear uncompassionate but isn't...the fleeting months with projects still undone! Love the photos, quotes and thoughts. God bless. Wishing you a fruitful blog-break!

  3. Another beautiful and touching post, Brenda. You always manage to say what we others might only be thinking, and you express the thought so gently. Enjoy your break.

  4. I wish you well with your endeavors.

  5. Lassitude is my pandemic vibe!

    Thanks for the introduction to @Iconawrites! Enjoy your blogging break!

  6. Brenda your words joy and hope spun gently through your post was just what I needed to read on this cold winter morning. Thank you. Also I certainly will feel less guilty indulging in reading fiction. What a gift! Enjoy your time away but remember you will be missed. Hugs

  7. Brenda, these are such fun posts. I so agree with the quote you shared by @Iconawrites - "Being joyful is not the same as being naïve or frivolous. It does not mean you are not aware the world is burning (or freezing). It means refusing to let the darkness consume you until you are too weary to fight back. It means steadfastly choosing hope.

    I am this way, naturally optimistic and cheery. That certainly doesn't mean I don't feel other people's pain or sadness. I do.

    I also agree about reading. I've gotten back to reading fiction more, and I am enjoying the mind vacation it is from the world's troubles. It gives me a break and allows me to be far more capable of dealing with the 'troubles' than if I didn't take that time away in a book.

  8. Brenda, this is a lovely post. Know you will be missed, but I well understand. I don't whirl and twirl as I once did either. Enjoy your projects, you will be so proud of yourself once you have completed them. Stay well.

  9. I love a little miscellany! Isn't that how our minds work anyway . . . or it is my mind?

    I have thought often about choosing joy in the midst of life's heartaches. Most certainly, I want to feel compassion and alleviate suffering when it is in my power to do so. And I don't want to just paint on a smile and be happy in my own little world and look out through my rose-colored glasses. So for me, choosing joy is seeing God's hand of sovereignty. It is being grateful for His blessings, even if they look different than I expected. A grateful heart cannot complain (meaning that I still need to work at that). It is trusting His heart.

    Thank you for your thoughtful post that inspired more thinking . . .

    And enjoy your blogging break!

  10. Brenda, thank you for such a lovely post! My family is in the middle of some really HARD stuff and I really enjoyed your beautiful post and uplifting thoughts. Enjoy your blog break and I look forward to seeing you soon. :)

  11. Dear Brenda....Have a good break. I know what you mean about splitting up your time. There is only so much to go around in a single day. We shall be here upon your return. Winter is back here in western Massachusetts. All tree branches are "frosted" with thick white snow. At least on a cake, one can eat the frosting for a yummy treat. ha ha ha Hope your break is all you want it to be and that projects will get worked on. Thanks for all your visits and comments, too, Brenda. Take care, dear friend. Susan

  12. Love your idea of the Liquorice Allsorts. Yes, I often wake up that way. In fact, one morning this week, in the wee hours, I woke up with much on my mind to pray for. I jumped from that person to this situation and on to the next thing. At the end of my motley prayer I said,"Well, Lord, you'll have to make sense of that one." Thank goodness he can!

    Thank you for introducing me to Carlos and Arne. They are wonderful!

    I'll look forward to your next post, once a few winter projects are completed. :)

  13. Oh dear Brenda, this post was just what I needed today. Lassitude has been part of my world lately also. Some times it is just hard to get motivated in the right directions. I choose hope with each new day.

    The thoughts from @Iconawrites really touched me and I thank you for sharing them. Today I was just thinking about being happy, content, joyful, and was it wrong to do so when so many are suffering around the world. I also pray and ask God's blessings and mercy on all.

    Enjoy working on your projects and we'll be hear waiting for encouraging words and lovely photos from you when you feel like jumping back in. Love, hugs and prayers ~ FlowerLady

  14. I relate 100% with your feelings of lassitude and all of the thoughts around it. Sounds like we each feel exactly the same way about our own tendencies towards joy.
    You are so very fortunate to still have your dear mother and I hope that soon you both will be able to be together -- in person.
    I enjoy Arne and Carlos! I used to watch a lot of their knitting videos. Quite the pair!
    Enjoy getting caught up on your projects.


To My Beautiful Readers,

Some people come into our lives, leave footprints on our hearts, and we are never the same. ~ Franz Peter Schubert

Thank you so much for leaving your 'footprint' here in my comment box. I do appreciate you taking a moment to share your thoughts today.

Brenda xo