Odds and sods

I haven’t been writing much lately.  My creative juices have been flowing in other directions.  I’ve been doing a lot of cooking lately, trying lots of new recipes.  That surprises even me.  I thought that domestic bent in my personality had disappeared long ago.  The following are a few of the creations I’ve concocted over the last couple of weeks.

Chick Pea and Rosemary SoupThe recipe for this Rosemary Chickpea Soup with Tomatoes and Barley came from a blog that I found when I followed a link in another blog to a link in a second blog and arrived at the blog belonging to Annie.  The soup was delicious and Annie provided excellent step-by-step instructions complete with pictures!  The recipe made a large batch.  Mike and I enjoyed it the day it was made and then I put what was left into one-litre mason jars (with a bit of head space, of course!) and stashed them in the freezer.   I’m hoping to thaw one of the jars this weekend and enjoy it again, this time with Soft Garlic Knots (recipe from Annie’s Eats…a different Annie). More



This spring I joined the Sauble Singers, a community choir based in Sauble Beach, Ontario.  The group rehearses and performs from April to August each year and then takes a hiatus for the rest of the year.  This lengthy break is necessitated by the fact that most of the members are snowbirds…retired people who spend their winters in the southern United States.  (Since age is relative, this group makes me feel like a youngster!)  We practice every Tuesday from 10 a.m. to noon.  Yesterday the group held its “Spring Social”.  It was a potluck luncheon held in the main hall of the Sauble Community Centre.  More

Love you forever.

My favourite children’s book of all time is “Love You Forever” by Robert Munsch.  For those who aren’t familiar with the story, it’s about a mother and son at various stages in their life together.  It begins with the mother holding her infant son in her arms and rocking him while she sings “I’ll love you forever.  I’ll like you for always.  As long as I’m living my baby you’ll be.”  The mother continues to rock her son and sing to him throughout his life, sometimes without his knowledge (such as when she sneaks into his room to rock her teenage son as he sleeps).  She does this until she is just too old and too weak to do so any more.  That’s when the son takes over and rocks and sings to his mother.  The tradition continues as the son rocks his own infant daughter at the end of the book.  It’s about the circle of life and the importance that love plays in keeping that circle going round and round. More

Good Vibrations

Last weekend I attended the OGEHR (pronounced “ogre”…think Shrek) (Ontario Guild of English Handbell Ringers) festival in Hamilton, Ontario.  The festival is held every two years and is a gathering of handbell choirs from across the province.  (At this year’s festival there were also choirs from Quebec and the United States.)  There were 54 choirs at this year’s event.  That’s more than 400 ringers!  Participants ranged in age from 8 to probably over 80 (no one would admit). 

Three different levels of handbell ringers were represented at the festival.  There was the “Tin” division (beginners), the “Copper” division (intermediates…my group is in this category) and the “Bronze” division (the most experienced ringers).  We worked on pieces of music within our own division and also on “massed” choir pieces in which all ringers played.  At the end of the festival we performed a concert for an appreciative audience comprised mostly of family and friends.  During our time in Hamilton we also attended workshops and enjoyed “mini concerts” with music provided by volunteers from among the groups in attendance. More

My George Pothier…

June has arrived!  It is a month of many birthdays and anniversaries in my family.  On June 25th my mother will be turning 94.  In honour of Mom’s birthday I would like to record some of the stories of her life, beginning with the romantic tale of Mom and George Pothier.  More

Happy Birthday Brenda!


I have a really great job.  I work for a computer software company.  We write software for municipal government.  This includes programs that generate municipal tax bills, water bills, dog tags and lottery licenses and address the myriad of other functions that municipal governments are responsible for.  It’s a small company.  Our office is located in an old farmhouse in the middle of the woods on the Sauble River.  The man who owns the company, Randy, lives in a restored log house on another part of the property.  Since most of our contact with our clients is via the telephone or the Internet, I don’t have to get dressed up to go to work.  Randy and his wife Brenda have cut trails through the woods that surround the office providing excellent opportunities for walking at lunch or breaktime.  In the winter, Brenda breaks the trail and I am able to snowshoe.  The office is only a five minute drive from my home and there is even a Tim Horton’s between home and the office.  It’s truly ideal.  More

Whenever I smell lilacs…

The cool spring of 2011 has resulted in the lilacs blooming late this year, but they are finally here and the warmer air of the past few days has been heavy with their scent.  In my family, the Sunday when the lilacs are at their peak is known as “Lilac Sunday”.  The tradition was started many years ago by my father’s eldest brother, Uncle Bill. More

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