Friday, March 15, 2024

Friday Pleasantries

"I know the world is filled with troubles
and many injustices, but reality is as beautiful
as it is ugly. I think it is just as important to sing
about beautiful mornings as it is to talk about the slums.
I just couldn't write anything without hope in it."

While spring shakes off the vestiges of winter in the great outdoors, I'm still inside sorting my current material possessions, deciding what to keep, what to give away, what needs to be tossed. Time has slipped away, and here it's time for a new blog post. Yesterday I set up my draft, searched for a suitable photo (above), and whispered a prayer for a spark of inspiration to get me started. I hoped it might arrive in the night hours while I slept.

I follow Austin Kleon, artist/author from Texas, and this morning his weekly newsletter popped in my inbox. On reading his heading "Basic Pleasantries", I felt the spark of interest and began working on my own simple and hopefully pleasant Friday post. 

ONE. Spring is in the air

The snow is melting fast. The house finches are singing to beat the band. And Rick spotted the first Canada Geese flying overhead towards the storm pond. It's still frozen but these early birds are eager to find the best spots for raising this season's batch of goslings. If that's not a cheering sight, I don't know what is.

TWO. So is love

My sister sent a charming news article of a young woman who met her future husband at the Honolulu airport. Awww, it was a lovely read. If you're interested, you'll find the article HERE. Pssst. We think there's a love story unfolding nearer to home in the family. It's an exciting time of year for young love.

THREE. Tea samples

A lovely friend who'd been vacationing in Victoria, BC, sent me a small package in the mail. It included samples of the teas she purchased at the well known Murchie's Fine Tea & Coffee shop: Publisher's Blend ("a chocolatey, nutty and malty blend of black teas, best accompanied by stacks of manuscripts that need reviewing.")—I'll be sipping that with my latest book; and Russian Caravan ("a blend of black teas and smoky Lapsang Souchong (to) recreate the campfires and brisk, starry nights experienced by the caravans carrying tea to the Russian Czar.")—maybe I'll pull out some Tolstoy to read with that tea. Also included was a fragrant bag of Lavender Cream ("A beautifully balanced lavender black tea with creamy vanilla.")—I love lavender tea. Looking forward to trying them.

FOUR. Basic pleasantries

We were ordering cups of tea and coffees from the clerk at the order counter - for four. The polite middle-aged woman was patient as we decided what beverage, the size we wanted, and whether we needed milk, cream, or sugar. Was that everything? Yes, said Rick, getting out his card to tap. But then she spotted me still eyeing the muffins in the showcase so she waited a nanosecond until I decided on a Bran Muffin. For some reason, I felt this woman noticed the little things, she paid attention to her customers, and I felt that slight connect of the heart. I smiled and thanked her warmly for serving us. It's a day later and the warmth of the tiny exchange still resonates. I appreciated her awareness of me as a customer. I felt seen. I hope she felt the same in our brief exchange of pleasantries. 

FIVE. A quote that caught my eye

 "Grace is like a blanket of hope
that covers you at night when you
don't think you have what it takes to
get up in the morning."

Thank God for that grace every morning!

Wishing you a beautiful weekend,

Photo Credit:
Image by vinsky2002 from Pixabay


  1. You won me with the first paragraph! The warmth of this post, the joy of tea, feeling noticed as a customer remind me that the little joys are in fact the best joys!
    May you have a joy-filled weekend of breath-catching pleasantries! ...and here's to love<3

    1. Your delight makes my heart light. Thank you, Janet! xo

  2. Brenda , your new photo (of you)is charming. Isnt it lovely when we find kindness and empathy in unexpected places. Your muffin must have tasted the better for it! I do like the quote about the blanket of Grace, beautifully worded.

    1. Thank you, Barbara, I am partial to that photo myself. The muffin was good! I find that grace quote so heartening, so comforting.

  3. Spring, love, tea--what a lovely recipe to nourish the soul!

  4. Well, I now want to make myself a cup of tea and tuck myself in with a good book. This was a most pleasant post, Brenda. BTW, I imagine you made as nice an impression on the clerk who served you hot brews and a muffin as she made on you. 😊

    1. I hope she felt lighter in her soul for having served us our midmorning treats. Thanks, Becki, for your note.

  5. Oh my, such a wonderful start to my day. And now I'm looking forward to some Saturday pleasantries, wherever and however they come to me. Such a lovely lovely post. Thank you!

    1. Joy, I'm glad to add a little something to your Saturday celebration of life. Best Day Ever!

  6. Brenda, thank you in more ways than one for this post. It was #1, 4 and 5 especially for me.

    #1 because whenever the mention of Canada geese comes up for me, it's always a sign, of an angel coming to tell me, Take heart. Spring is almost upon us.

    #4 because I had a similar experience at the supermarket checkout on Friday. A serious-faced young woman so carefully packing my groceries into bags. We made eye contact, although it was such a busy day, tons of shoppers. And I gave her my brightest smile because she needed to know she was one in a million.

    #5 because of the quote on grace. Also because that number has been coming up over and over. I looked up its biblical significance to learn that 5 means grace 🙂

    1. Thank you, Caitlynne Grace! I so appreciate your lovely comment - it's added so much to this post. xo

  7. Dear Brenda,
    I love your Friday pleasantries, read on this sunny Saturday afternoon. It is so lovely when we make those tiny connections with people we may not know nor ever see again. And the quote about grace as a blanket is a thought to cling to. Thank you, and have a wonderful weekend.

    1. Thanks, Lorrie! Always appreciate your stopping by to visit. xo

  8. Lovely post, Brenda. Reading your post was a wonderful "pleasantry" for me on this St. Patrick's Day! Nice photo at the top, too. Have a beautiful day.

    1. Thanks, Susan, for adding pleasantries to this post. xo

  9. Good Morning Brenda!! LOVE the quote about “Grace!!” ~ a beautiful analogy!!! I’m picturing the many quilts I took out of a very old family trunk to wash, care for and rediscover.
    I am making it a point to zero in on the “ordinary people” in our day who seem to “go beyond” taking our order, taking our money in simple exchanges. Gifts can and do come in “ordinary” ways and on “ordinary” days! I delight in them. I LOVE your posts Brenda because obviously you do too!!
    Hope your “clearing out/relooking at things is going well! I know that I could thin out my books but I just love having my own “library” to pick from!🤣
    ~ A very sunny day in Ohio, waiting patiently for warmer temps and flowers!!!
    Thank you!!!!!!💗🧚 ~ Ann from Ohio

    1. Oh Ann, I love knowing that you too have been reaching out and changing ordinary exchanges into
      extraordinary pleasantries. About thinning out your books, I totally relate to you having your own 'library' to pick from. Thinning out is good when we're letting go of books we are truly done with... we let them go to serve another, making room on our shelves for new discoveries, a few new forever favourites.

      I'm so glad you stopped by. You're a treasure. xo

  10. Ah, Spring is definitely a pleasant thought. The Canadian geese are always a joy to see fly overhead. We also have little black birds that come back every year. Definitely a pleasantry.

    And about that clerk you noticed be very attentive. She probably is in the right kind of job and you probably helped make her day brighter by being an appreciative customer. Being on the other side of the counter for many years, (maybe not in a coffee shop), but still, you meet all kinds of customers and some are just more of a joy to serve.

    Love that quote too, it definitely is a good find. Be great framed and hung on a wall. The first line with..."like a blanket of hope" just sounds so cozy.

    From the Anonymous Betty

    1. Betty, it's true, that clerk is probably in the right kind of job, and I delight in trying to be that appreciative customer. Framing and hanging up that grace quote - that's a wonderful idea. Thanks so much for joining in the conversation. xo


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