Thursday, November 27, 2014

To be thankful

We as a nation set aside one day to be thankful.
One  official day, to be thankful, but everyday is a day good day to be thankful for something.  How preachy that sounds.  But it is true.  And it still sounds preachy,but I'll say it anyway.

Grandma preparing a huge feast for her family and may-be some friends too is a warm and beautiful part of the history of an American Thanksgiving. I Prefer it to the image of Pilgrims and Indians, which may or may not have actually happened.  
Thanksgiving is above all about celebrating working together, family, friends and the other intangible blessings of life.  And what better way than to feast together, our ancestors knew that well. 


The table would be a true "groaning board " of everyone's  favorite and or best offering.  And the treats that were available only at that time of the year.  I have vague, memories of a Thanksgiving, close to 60 years ago, when my cousins held my they tiny hands and walked me down the path through the orchard, and to the back kitchen door of my Grandparents house.  I couldn't see over the piles of snow that flanked the path the men and older children had shoveled.

I remember that the house smelled so good and it was so warm, I sat at the kids table, I remember soda, not a common thing in those days, stuffing turkey etc, and this green jello creation, it had what might have been coleslaw in it, I will never know as I never thought to ask about it until recently, and almost no one is left to ask.  But I am thankful that I can recall something of  those times and the people around me and some of what  Thanksgiving was about.   And not that many years later I found myself in the city, watching parades, on Thanksgiving Day.   Things you are grateful for don't have to be big. 

And all this brings me to what are you grateful for, probably many of the same things I am grateful for. Things like food on your table and a roof over your head, the love of friends and family, may-be even the internet, I am surely grateful for that.
I am also grateful, for a cold drink of water on a hot day.
A sharpened pencil with an eraser when I am doing the taxes.
The rainbows that prisms cast .
Public Library's.
I am grateful for the man who plays the violin while he collects for the Salvation Army.
I am grateful for Fritos.
I am grateful for the experiences good and bad that made me who I am.
I am grateful for 800 numbers.
I am grateful for music.
I am grateful for the beauty that is everywhere in nature. 
I am grateful for books.
I am grateful for electricity and sometimes I am even grateful when it goes out.
I am grateful for flip flops.
I am grateful for the bounty of choices I have.
I am grateful for the smell of sheets dried outdoors.
I am grateful for the Peanuts Gang.

I have participated in Gratitude challenges where for 3 consecutive days one writes down 5 things they are grateful for.  Wrote pages.

Gratitude journals, been there, done that and realized I didn't realize how many things I am grateful for. And before I forget , I am grateful for you, dear reader.

Often I think, and yes you can smell smoke when I think,  that having a grateful heart is also something to be thankful for.  A blessing if you will, letting one see the balance in life                                                                      

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Where even the brave dare not go, grocery shopping before a holiday

Two days before Thanksgiving
I went to the store
my cupboards were groaning
but I needed more
I had a list
oh what a bore

the parking lot was crowed
loose carts everywhere
so laden with provisions
did anyone dare
forget the most obscure morsel
would show lack of care

potatoes and onions and celery
what is stuffing bread?
condensed milk and red beets
ran through my head
mini marshmallows and rice crispies
for the feast ahead

I dreamed of the flavors
I savored the smell
I wished to see smiles
on their faces as well
I spied some sale candy
I was hungry as well

The isles were crowded
I saw more people that live in town
And all said "Happy Thanksgiving"
as we floundered around
And dreaming of culinary magic
with each treat we found

My cart was overflowing
as the aisle became fuller
I looked in my wallet
and saw it was thinner
but thankful for "plastic"
I would  still have dinner

And to the checkout
I was aimed like a bullet
my cart so well laden
that I had to pull it
and only one cashier
wanted nothing to do with it

chatting politely while standing in line
glad its not snowing
when we would get home
we had know way of knowing
would our turkeys thaw out
anxiety was growing

a fine haul of victuals
I had reason to brag
 where is the turkey?
is this a gag?
then off in the corner
I spy one last bag

Friday, November 21, 2014

not so Silent Saturday with a dash of poetry

"November comes
And November goes,
With the last red berries
And the first white snows.
With night coming early,
And dawn coming late,
And ice in the bucket
And frost by the gate.
The fires burn
And the kettles sing,
And earth sinks to rest
Until next spring."
- Elizabeth Coatsworth



Wednesday, November 19, 2014

"Grow ideas in the garden of your mind." ~~MisterRodgers

"All you have to do is think ands it grows." 

MisterRodgers, once said that his ministry was expressed through music.  So i feel that he would really love this remix.
Quietly and simply he explained some eztremely complex ideas, like how the mind works.   

Did you ever imagine things?
Are they scary things?
Did you ever imagine things
Things you'd like to have?
Did you ever see a cat's eyes in the dark
And wonder what they are?
Did you ever pretend about things like that before?

Did ever grow anything in the Garden of your Mind?
You can grow ideas
In the Garden of your mind
It's good to be curious about many things
You can think about things and make believe
All you have to do is think
And they'll grow

Imagine every person that you see
Is someone different
From every other person in the world

Some can do things
Some can do others
Did you ever think about the many things you've learned to do?

Did ever grow anything in the Garden of your Mind?
You can grow ideas
In the Garden of your mind
It's good to be curious about many things
You can think about things and make believe
All you have to do is think
And they'll grow

Did you feel like going like that? (hand snap)
Let's give the fish some food
Mr McFeely, I didn't order any whistles
(music break)
That's what they call these slide things

Did you feel like going like that? (hand snap)
There are so many things to learn about in this world
And so many people who can help us learn

Did ever grow anything in the Garden of your mind?
You can grow ideas
In the Garden of your mind
It's good to be curious about many things
You can think about things and make believe
All you have to do is think
You can think about things and make believe
All you have to do is think
And they'll grow

The first measurable snow of the season, and it arrived just on time.  Snow usually shows up about now, real snow, snow that sticks  to the ground, snow that makes it nice to be indoors. 

While working in the gaeden I let my mind to wander, but for me anyway it is not a good opportunity to actually think and plan. or to ponder.   I surf my own mental net and just see what is there , whatever random, or nearly forgotten artifact of a plan remains, the half remembered curiosities I have come across, those thoughts so deep and answerless, and it drifts over the vastness of space and time, causing me to wonder about things like if I didn't know that the stars were suns of distant solar systems, what might I think they were.  

 Many ideas and thoughts of often the most random ones come to while I am doing mundane work.  And strangely I am sometimes grateful for mundane and repetitive tasks for that reason.  That must be where the seeds for the garden of my mind come from, or one of the places at least. 

For obvious reasons, the idea of your mind being like a garden, makes a lot of sense to me.  There are the seeds and plants that you put there and the weeds that plant themselves there.  You know the difference, but sometimes you might forget, or not recognize a new seedling as being from a seed you planted.  Then there are the "volunteers", the plants that grow from the vegetable scraps and parings tossed into the compost.  They can be wonderful, strong and sturdy plants, sometimes with surprising cross bread fruits and sometime true to variety.

Yep, the garden of my mind, the garden of your mind.

Monday, November 17, 2014


~~ artist unknown

silent features watching
the silent  snow falling, was
once, again will be

Friday, November 14, 2014

Thursday, November 13, 2014

What month of the year is Canada?

"November always seemed to me the Norway of the year."
- Emily Dickinson

There is an interesting statement.  Emily Dickenson lived in a time when the world was a bit colder than it is now, but I like her choice.  Would I have chosen  Norway to represent November, I had to think about that, but no matter.   I wasn't sure, at least that is what I thought when I first read this.  Then I thought I should make my own list, so here goes.

Let us begin with January, which is very cold, with occasional thaws that turn rills to torrents. Iceland, yes January is Iceland.

February with it's 28 or 29 days always feels like the longest month of the year, so I think it would be best represented by Siberia.

March a month that has days from all of the seasons of the year, sometimes all seasons are represented in one day.  Canada a vast and varied country, yes Canada is March.

April, which makes a speedy transitions from the last remnants od winter  into the first greening of summer almost as fast as descending the Alps, is you guessed it Switzerland.

May, is England, full of blooming flowers, ancient poetryand , and with a pleasant thought damp climate.

July is the United States, in a hurry, always in a lather, rushing.  Full of diversity, thunder and lightening.

August, swelters and sparkles under a strong clear sun.  It is Australia.  Vast open skies, powerful thunderstorms,  wanting to dip into the ocean, or a lake

September, warm weather golden sunlight, fruits and vegetables abound, September is Italy

October is Scotland, cool and refreshing, dotted with beautifully colored trees,  robed in morning fogs and  more than a little mysterious.

November is the first of winters chill, with occasional breaks, cold and grey some days, sunny and crisp other, yes November is Norway. 

December is Germany, glowing windows and gentle snowfalls, Christkindle markets, nights filled with stars.