That Corner Chair

Ever paused to check out what folks are doing at bus stops, or observed  parents with kids in restaurants, in the park?

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Eyes on phone.  Caregiver of disabled children. In local mall.
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In the mall at Christmastime.  Not interested in atmosphere, decorations,  festive music.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The forty-something-and-under phenomenon.  Hunched over phones …

Shook my head head in disbelief as I took this one –

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Youngster manning Salvation Army Christmas Kettle – crouched over phone and halfheartedly ringing bell with free hand.  Guess why kettle’s almost empty.
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As it should be.  Smiling Kettle Person happy to pose at WalMart.  Couldn’t help emptying  my purse of all its spare change.

Times have changed. Sad.

Life’s blazing flicker moments come and go.  In plain sight.

So easy to miss …

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………………………………………………………………………………………………………………

Happened to look out of window as sun rose last week.    Picked up phone and clicked.   

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Sunrise over neighbour’s home

Minutes later –                                                     

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Brighter, more gold

Stark contrast in brightness of light and sharpness of shadow.  Parable for the day –

Only a matter of time before things get brighter …      

Might have missed the golden moments in morning haste, if I hadn’t happened to look.  ……………………………………………………………………………………………………….     Objects have such power to transport me back to associated moments.

 When I look at these – 

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The moment I stand at this bay window, I’m back in assorted paradise climes where I found the shells and starfish
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Enormous bathroom collage of shells from  shores around the world.  Daily I re-live the joy of beach-combing.  The sense of remembered joy never fades.

                                                                                                        

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Ah, to be a dewdrop in lush, humid rain forest.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

And then there’s Chair-In-The-Corner .

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Husband’s maternal grandpa’s chair.  Over a century old, from Kopay, Jaffna.  

Hansi putuwa in the vernacular.  Translated: resting chair

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Infant Husband with grandfather on said Corner Chair .

Miracle child, my husband.  Survived despite all odds.

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Cutie Pie- now mine!

Parents who dared to believe.  Mother with dogged faith –

He’s going to be okay …

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Husband with parents after christening at St. Luke’s Anglican Church, Borella.  (Left) Maternal grandparents, (right) Paternal grandparents
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“Hi there!”.  Dad, Mom and precious first born (two brothers to follow)

– and Maternal Granny who pretty much slept with head in his crib at night that first year.

Just in case …            

Grew to be strong as an ox, that babe, healthy as a horse.                     

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A deep, strong bond to the very end of her life. Husband and Ammamma (His mom’s mom). 

And married me …  

Testimony to power of prayer, faith,  love, positive thinking.

 

 

 

 

………………………………………………………………………………….

Visually struck by the obvious.  See how reflection in mirror changes.

Depending on where I stand,  angle I look from …

Another parable?  Sort of.

How do I perceive situations that arise?

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It will, but can it hold you?
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Need more

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Consider, ponder on definition of joy.  An inner grace, un-dependent on circumstances.  Ability to be thankful.  To see the glass  half full, not half empty.  To look back with gratitude.    

And embrace even the unbearable uglies …

To be able to evoke music from within –     

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Music from within??

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Determined to believe the best is yet to come.      

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“The best is yet to come”.  Caption on van zipping past on Saturday morning.

…………………………………………………………………………………………………………………

Thankful husband’s life was spared to marry me.  Thankful for our daughters.

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He and Me.  Post-cancer treatment cruise.  Sketched Antigua, West Indies. (Bears passing resemblance to Husband, None at all to me.)
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New York City artist.  Striking reproduction of the twins’ ‘inner essence’ 

    

 

 

 

Thankful for nine cancer-free years.       

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Pink ribbons for breast cancer.  Holy Spirit Dove.  Mother-in-law’s handiwork.  A gift to celebrate the end of chemo.  Always grateful for in-laws’ loving care and support.

 

 

 

 

Wordless gratitude …  

Wishing you thankful joy today.   May it sidle sweetly in and entice you to come out and play –

In spite of yourself …

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Until next time,   

sincerely

Gimme, Gimmee, Gimmeee!

Puppy adores presents.  Assumes every gift-wrapped package is for him –

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“Gimme, gimmee, gimeee ….” (Puppy and Ruwan)
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“Hey … gimme!”  (Puppy and Reshma)


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Nope!  

                 

         

 

 

 

 

 

 

Got  caught red-handed on Christmas Eve, snooping  around tree.

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“To Pup” … gift tag and tissue flung aside.  Hole in the bag.  He found his present.
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Looks like it
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“Finally, all mine.” (Had to hide the bag till Christmas morning).
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“Don’t remember.  Never graduated !”
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 “Oh, hello Santa, it was you all the time!”
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So who killed Santa?
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Didn’t do it!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Guilty …

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Not me!
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    Fine, call the cops!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Puppy lives in state of constant joyous expectation.

Fabulous way to live …

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“Something yummy, for sure!” (Puppy and Friend Jim)
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Every moment, no matter what comes along

Living life in Puppy Mode …

Sunshine and shadow – embrace it all.

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Me in splash of sunlight
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Christmas decorations on kitchen wall
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Ivy topiary in foyer
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Orchid on kitchen table

 

 

 

 

 

 

Life’s treasures – darkness, light; good, the bad, lovely and ugly.

Rich fodder for this writer’s pen, if nothing else …

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Driving home at dusk.  Lamplight over court.

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Life often presents real live parables.  Puppy is mine.

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…………………………………………………………………………………………………………………..

I have dreams.

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More than one, actually
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BIG DREAMS
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Just did. 

A secret path leads to dreams.  Winds through dusty roads, up dim stairways and rugged steps, along endless corridors.  

Along the way –

  • Jeers, sceptics, wet blankets –
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Mean comments
  • Dead ends, slammed doors –
  • Grim warnings –
  • Unforseen restrictions –
  • Disappointments, endless waits –

And yet –

Impelling urges on, blazing inferno that won’t be quenched.  Lurks just beneath surface of immediate consciousness, hangs like  mist, a veil through which real world is viewed.

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Endless
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Clinic for  weary dreamers?
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As fast or as slow as it takes

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Still …    

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Yes! (Tiana’s T-shirt)
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That’s me!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Hebrews 11:1 Now faith is confidence in what we hope for and assurance about what we do not see … 

Fueled by burning urge to write –

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Really do  
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At my desk
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Out on the deck

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

So, no matter how I feel –

Must keep going –

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You want me to … what?
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Hey, it’s freezin’ out here!

                   Okay, all done, and good luck with shoveling up that poop when the snow thaws …

Never mind what they say.

One piggy, second pig, third pig …

and …

Ha! 

Nope!  Long before that …

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Okay.
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A swine state of affairs!

And now –

Don’t know.  

Won’t find out till I try … 

Finally, one sweet day –

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And it was all worth it after all …
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Light at the end of the tunnel 

                                                            Aren’t you glad you made the climb?

Every day is Christmas for Puppy, any moment might bring gifts.

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Every day is NOT Christmas (back of scooter taxi, Colombo, Sri Lanka)
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                                                        Christmas Eve. Bone-shaped stocking – guess whose?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Thankful for Puppy, a parable of joy and daily expectation.

Gimme, gimmee … gimmeee!

Until next time,

sincerely

PS: The pictures in this post are all random clicks on Ipad and phone.

Matchmaker, Matchmaker

“So Grampi, was it love at first sight when you saw her?”

Daughter’s eyes widen, jaw drops when Maternal Grandpa lets out belly laugh.

Hahahahaha …..

 Her romantic notions of darling-sweep-me-off-my-feet-I’m-yours-forever are shattered.

Sister and I glean bits and pieces over the years.

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Sister and me

Dad’s story –

“I came home from work one evening, and Mother told me I was fixed up.

No further discussion …

(Rumour has it that Paternal Grandma in her heyday was a tough bird.)

Fixed up is a direct translation from the vernacular.  There’s a sense of no-way-out about it. 

Matchmakers are Aunty Ruby’s in-laws.

Dad, up-and-coming young banker, is desperate to see what the girl looks like before formal introduction when he and parents visit her home.   Enlists help of Friend Gunam. Friend and he ride Dad’s scooter up and down Mum’s lane.  Young Lady finally makes an appearance on front porch.

Dad and Friend ride away.  Dad is glum.

Friend Gunam’s version:  “He was speechless.  He fell instantly in love.”

Dad’s version:  “I didn’t know what to say.  She looked like nothing on earth!”

Ouch …

Enormous relief to meet the girl a few days later.  Accomplished.  Demure.  Long dark hair.  Pleasant to behold.

Phew …

Turns out young lady on front porch was Neighbour’s Daughter!

Wrong address!

True story – honest – straight from the horse’s mouth.

Mum’s Story –

Me:  “Mum, so what did you think when you saw him?”

Mum:  “He was so handsome, darling.  My heart skipped a beat!”

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Stars in Mum’s eyes!
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Only after  formal engagement and a ring on her finger
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He’s the man!

                         

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The date is fixed.  Here comes the bride …

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All the world and his wife were invited
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Beatrice.  Blushing bride

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Till death do us part

   

 

 

 

 

Uncle Gunam – comrade, confidante, fellow sleuth – is   Bestman.

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Man and wife.  Confetti, flower garlands and smiles.  Dad and Mum on church steps

Fast forward fifty years.   Golden Wedding Anniversary  celebrations.  

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Diamond ring.  Dad and Mum renewing marriage vows at  altar.  
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Order of Service.  Reception dinner and dancing after.

 

 

They  all said it – grannies and great aunts, aunties and elderly widows:

“Love comes after marriage, that’s how it happens.”

Stable, enduring.

Me to Daughters:  “Safer, more trustworthy than E-Harmony dot com, right?”

Daughters shrug and roll their eyes. 

Whatever …

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Love comes after marriage …

So that’s why Grampi laughed out loud.

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Youthful genes and blue jeans.  Grampi with Granddaughters (too long ago)
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Aging nicely.  Grampi and Peter (Sister’s son)

…………………………………………………………………………………………………………………..

Little voice from past echoes in my ear.  “Fall is an untidy season, Mommy …”

Second small voice chimes out in agreement.

Aptly put.

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Amazing how Memory Bank unlocks to release unexpected cameo moments. 

Daughters are all grown up now. 

I remember all over again what a pretty season this is.  

Neighbourhood trees are on fire –

Backyard fence is burning up –

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View from upstairs window
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View from kitchen 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Summer’s done.  Falling  in love with fall – all over again.

 

Blazing autumn promenades –  

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Husband and Puppy
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Puppy sniffs neighbour’s pumpkins on garbage day.  (No Hallowe’en celebrations at our house.)
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Eek!

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Tiny joy-moments to take one’s breath away …

(1) Pause to observe a single coloured leaf –

(2) Apple-strewn sidewalk –

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  • (3) Smudge of rainbow in grey sky –                         

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    Gasp of delight, unexpected sight
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    Hello brave rose!

     

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

(4) Last lonely rose clinging to neighbour’s fence.

…………………………………………………………………………………………………………………..

Thought of Mum when I took these pictures –

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Landscape-in-a-window
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Living room reflected in old mirror

She used to say, “Eyes are the mirror of the soul.” 

Mum’s heart was reflected in her eyes.  Childlike, guile-less.  She drew people to her like a magnet.

Me: “Mum, has it ever bothered you that Dad is so … er  … striking?  Have you ever wished you were … maybe … prettier?”

Mum (puzzled):  “No. Why? Never!”

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Debonair Dad.  Twenty-something bachelor.
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Play on words.  Dad’s name is  Prins.

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They called him Omar Sharif in his day.    

…………………………………………………………………………………………………………………..

People leave footprints on our lives.  Mum left indelible prints on mine.

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That’s Mum
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By the lake last summer

Thankful for those who’ve touched my life, influenced my thinking. Thankful for Mum. 

Miss you, Mum.  Miss your loving letters …

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Saved every letter Mum ever wrote to me (until she discovered email)

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…………………………………………………………………………………………………………………..

Chilly morning today.  Found bird’s nest under tree –

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Straw and clay – avian masterpiece

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In church last Sunday

 

 

 

 

I’ll continue to  cling to thankful.  If it’s all that remains, it’s enough.  

Until next time,

sincerely

PS: All the pictures in this post are moments captured on my IPad and phone. 

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If you enjoyed the post, please like this page, follow and share. Thank you.  xxx

So Long Brangelina

Brangelina’s done.  Announcement sets social media ablaze.

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How did the bubble burst?

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Why?

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No one knows
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All by myself

 

 

 

 

 

 

Shocked fans.   Shattered illusions. 

Brad-Pitt-‘N’-Angelina-Jolie …  poster kids  for You-Can-Have-It-All.

# Déjà vu   #What’s new?

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Did they?
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Hollywood’s Golden Couple

Six youngsters now face a new reality.  Sad.

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Pitt-Jolie brood – poor mites

As Mum often said , and The Beatles sang …  money can’t buy you love.

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The Fab Four (Beatles tribute band) Money can’t buy me love …
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Concert In The Park 2016

 

The point is …

You never know what goes on behind closed doors.  (Yep, Mum said that too!)………………………………………………………………………………………………………

Garden gates are intriguing.  They seem to beckon and invite into a world beyond. 

You might, however, lift the latch and walk through to find a disappointing Other Side.

Food for thought…

…………………………………………………………………………………………………….

Saw this one as I drove by last week.  Stopped to take a picture.

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Absolutely

Yes!  Made my day.

………………………………………………………………………………………………………………..

This week’s Joy Moments

(1) Full moon  through bathroom skylight –         

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Midnight magic

(2)  Husband in Andy’s sunglasses –

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A refelctive mood

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

(3) Shiny green bug in Garden –

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Neon green sheen

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

(3) Butterfly at mid-week picnic with  Little Girl and her mom –

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Reshma spotted it 
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Monarch butterfly

 

(4) Sky on kitchen counter/ in sink –

(5) Chipmunk in birdfeeder –

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Tea anyone?

(6) Apples in garden sun –

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Every single one!

…………………………………………………………………………………………………..

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………………………………………………………………………………………………………………….

This week’s assignment:  Keep a journal of daily joy moments.

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Not really!
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Always!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

………………………………………………………………………………………………………………

.Smile for the day – 

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In mall parking lot

They don’t??

Enjoy!

Until next time,

sincerely

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Something’s a-foot

 

 

 

 

 

 

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You make your bed, you lie on it. (Another gem from Mum!)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

PS:  The pictures in this post (except the Pitt-Jolies) were random moments captured on my Ipad and phone.

Feel free to share, like this page and follow.   Continue reading “So Long Brangelina”

This is Susan

She makes a tedious trip to Walmart special.   

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This is Susan

Susan poses for the picture on a rare occasion when no one is in line behind me.  I offer to send it to her.

“No,” Her fingers play across an imaginary keyboard. “No email.  My husband does.  And son.”

She doesn’t know their addresses.

Our first conversation is about the dainty silver-dust-sprinkled fabric flower tucked behind her ear.  She wears it with elegance and panache.

 “I like your flower, Susan.”

“Thank you! I bought it in South Korea.”

“You’re nice,” she says one day.

“No, Susan, YOU are nice!”

I give her a hug.  I have to. 

Co-worker walks by at that moment.  “Everyone likes Susan,” she chuckles … and waits.

Yikes! Sorry lady, show’s over.   Ain’t huggin’ you!

 Her smile is a magnet. It makes my day. I find myself disappointed when Susan (with the pale sparkly eye shadow and fetching lipstick) is not at her station.

…………………………………………………………………………………………………………………

Mum (who had umpteen quotes in her hat, bless her!) would say :

“Smile and the whole world smiles with you, weep and you weep alone.” 

In layman’s language:  No one seeks the company of a gloomy Gus.

Happiness is conditional upon circumstances.   Joy is a deliberate state of mind

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Just kidding

Next week’s assignment:  Look for joy moments.

 

 

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The little moments are the real biggies

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……………………………………………………………………………………………………………………

Some joy moments from this week  –

(1) Sun thumbing its nose at pregnant rain clouds 

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  • (2) Chipmunk pausing to scratch

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…. before darting away

 (3) Neighbour’s cat (a second before Puppy pounces)

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  • (4) My shadow family
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Eye-rolling patience with snap-happy Mom

………………………………………………………………………………………………………………….

Summer’s all but done.  

Too cool to sit outside till the stars come out.

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Wonderful while it lasted

These leaves will soon change colour. 

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Flowers will fade and die.  Garden will begin to look like a bitter, unloved woman.

Thankful for –

(1) Cooler afternoons to walk with Puppy 

  • (2) One last summer snooze-‘n’-dream in the Secret Spot under Apple Tree last Saturday afternoon
  •  

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    Popsicle, Puppy and me – unexpected warm  temperatures 
  • (3) The Susans of the world who make the mundane bright

…………………………………………………………………………………………………………………..

 

 

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Here’s to what’s to come …

 

Until next time,

sincerely

PS:  Lawn sign seen near home.  Really, who shops here?   

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Huh??

 

All the pictures in this post are random clicks on my IPad or phone.  Share the love, like the page and follow.  

 

 

So Call Me Pollyanna

So the last days of summer are upon us.  The sudden scorching temperatures have been a bonus. Sort of.  Late walks with Puppy sans sweater –

Continue reading “So Call Me Pollyanna”

Mama Mia!

Love how morning light spills all over Garden.   Continue reading “Mama Mia!”

Never Again!

Puppy’s tail is wagging . “Come on!”

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Don’t  want to …

………………………………………………………………………………………………………………….

The winter was long, it spilled  into spring.

Things are awry this year.  I return from the journey to the Land of Dreams to  Very Sick Husband and spend the next ten days at his bedside.  The first visitors have to don cap and gown.

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Hospital fashions
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George Stavropolous, Executive Pastor, Harvest Bible Chapel, Markham

 

 

 

There are special moments.  Like the surprise visit from Pastor George, who kneels beside Husband’s bed to pray for his recovery.  Powerful, moving.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Lorne and Olive Parker – 64 years and counting

 

 

We make friends with the Parkers.  They are devoted to each other. Husband christens them the Cozy (not Nosey) Parkers!

 

 

Pastor George’s prayers are effective, Husband recovers.  Thank God. 

Snow slowly melts to reveal a winter’s worth of lapdog droppings.

 Ugh!

It’s that time once more –

Yard is a mess.   I baulk and text desperate  SOS to Our Friend Jim who has a soft spot for Puppy.  Friend Jim is always

happytohelp

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Jim and Puppy.  Best buddies.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Friend Jim hacks, chops, prunes.  Two long evenings.  He stays for dinner.  My gratitude is immense.

It takes me  three hours to bag and put away the clippings.

Off to the

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Fifteen bags of top soil.  Trays of seedlings.  Fertilizer.

Thermometre spikes unseasonally.  Sun beats down.

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have merged.  

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Not possible!
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Not this year!

 

 

 

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No idea!

 

 

 

 

 

 

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There’s no such thing

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Toilsome labour, NOT for the faint of heart.

Rising reluctantly  to the challenge –

Eighteen hour marathon, a month’s prep in one long weekend.

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Mine!
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That’s right!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Wish I could crawl under something  and take a nap – 

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Never again!

Grass as high as an elephant’s eye,  cordless lawnmower decides to die.  (It’s had a long and  worthy life.)   Guiltily relieved.

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Me … till the day Lawnmower died (RIP!)

grassisgreenenough

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I rant.  “Too much, too big, one small woman …”

Blah, blah,  blah …

snapdragon
Me!
bloomin'crazy
Me again!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Husband to the rescue, finds Diminutive Oriental Gentleman who will mow lawn.  We bridge the language divide, negotiate a price.       

Free, I’m free!      

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Hurrah for Husband!                                                               
happydance
Me doing a happy dance

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Oriental Gent and Crew work magic. Lawn never looked as good  during my lengthy tenure as Trusty Grass Cutter –

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Wind chimes tinkle in  shy breeze, garden glows.    

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sweetsuccess

 

 

 

 

 

welcometothegarden

Inhale joy.  It’s 

This is

wheredreamscometrue
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My garden-through-the-looking glass …

Bliss –

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The first rose …
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The promise of more.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Birds …

birdseed

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Dressing gown – feed the birdies

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

birdfeeder2

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Heaven on earth …

All year long I dream of the

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(1) Chipmunk Encounter in Bird Café

(2) Sunday afternoon nap under Apple Tree

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Puppy and me on Striped Green Folding Bed
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Grafted Apple Tree – bears three kinds of apples

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

(3) Saturday brunch 

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Daddy, gimme, gimme!

(4) Nests and robins’ eggs

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(5) Garden lunches

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rosiemacaroons
Rosalyne brought dessert

Can it get any better?

simplybeautiful

This is the life …

…………………………………………………………………………………………………………………..

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gardenisafriend

giveyourgardensomelove
I will!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Morning view from upstairs window –

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innovativegarden

flowerchair

 

 

 

 

 

 

flowerbottle

 

 

 

 

 

 

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So …  Never Again ?  

but it’s like giving birth.  You forget the pain the moment you hold the infant in your arms.  This is my baby –

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Take a stroll through my Garden of Eden.

gardenerseden

gardenofweedin

 

They say you must

domoreofwhatmakesyouhappy .  This is what makes me happy, so  I

keepcalmcarryon

takeabreaksmell

 

…………………………………………………………………………………………………………………..

Thankful for Husband’s recovery.  Things could have taken a terrible turn. Thankful for Pastor George and those who cared to pray.  Thankful for Our Friend Jim without whom we would have no Backyard Eden this year.

woof

So blessed …lovesummer

somanypossibilities

borntogarden
Who me??
fatshadow
Bye!

 

sincerely

P.S.  All the photographs in this post are random clicks from my camera phone.

thinshadow
Some shadows are more flattering than others ..

 

Continue reading “Never Again!”

Two Slices Of Rainbow

Rush hour traffic on Friday morning. A chopped-off bar of colour appears ahead, directly above the steering wheel.

Sketch by Selina, 2016 F
Sketch by Selina,  February 2016

A sideways glance at my passenger. “Look at the gorgeous bit of rainbow!”

No response from Daughter.  I turn into the bus station, and …

Gasp!

An equal-opposite matching wedge in pastel colours. The slices cling to the sky, like two pillars on either side of the building.

Sketch by Selina,
Sketch by Selina, February 2016

Enchanting. Delighted …

“Look, another piece. Heaven is smiling!

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!  It’s going to be special!”

Daughter throws a puzzled look and hops out of the car. “Bye, Mom.”

Kids …

I park some feet away, remove sunglasses, raise camera-phone to click. No rainbow.

Huh?

Disappointed. Turn key in the ignition, put sunglasses back on and …  my chunks of rainbow are back!

Huh?

Lower the glasses to the tip of my nose. Rainbow-chunks disappear. Realization dawns. These stumps of rainbow are only visible through tinted glasses.   Daughter never saw them.  She must have thought I was nuts.  

I’ve just seen beauty un-visible to the naked eye.  Life’s like that sometimes, isn’t it?

I drive home realizing that

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because Inner Me wears tinted lenses born from the dark seasons she’s lived through.

I suppose the soul-sunglasses are to blame for how my eyes perceive  things. Like last week, when I was in the mall minding my business. I had this serious urge to step into Hallmark Cards and …

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Three ceramic ornaments in different spots — two below eye level and half turned away from where I stood — held hands and stood up to shout with one voice –

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Message for the day?

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 – honest! I’m

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and

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that IMG_20160123_201754

and IMG_20160114_150918

is now!

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to convince me and

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I took this picture some months back.

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How I laughed.  That’s me.  I can’t help it!


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sincerely

P.S.  Keep the sunglasses on!


 

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imageIMG_20160212_113900


This post is dedicated to my friend Marietta with my thanks for the pictures she took and shared with me.  I’ve used one of them in this piece.  All the other photos are digital moments captured on my phone.

Love Language

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Family and out-of-town cousins eager to open presents. Four grown up offspring eyeing plump stockings dangling from the mantelpiece.  IMG_4793

The Beloved (aka  _20150623_101400

) wields a mop with vigour.

Sis-in-law is puzzled. “Why is he sweeping the floor?”

“He’s mopping,” I tell her.

Sis-in-law looks around. “But the place is clean.”

“I’ll be

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,” The Beloved announces.

Sis-in-law laughs. “  _20150617_155007

my brother-in-law sweeps while the stockings and presents are waiting.”

“He vacuumed. He’s mopping now,” I interject. “And one man’s oddness is someone else’s love language, you know!”

I’m on a roll. “  IMG_20151125_212546

.  A spotless house and  washroom is his gift of love.”

The giggles cease.

Love language, huh?  Hmm …  IMG_20151225_001929

A light bulb comes on.  I hear daughters’ voices , then mine, in my head –

“Why do you spend so much time folding napkins and arranging cutlery?  It’s just a table, Mom. Who cares?”

Who cares?  Who cares??

“I care. It’s  how I show my guests they are honoured and appreciated. It’s my gift –  IMG_20151228_095649

that only I can give  

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, and I

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giving it.

I begin to wonder.  Is love why I spend hours

– Decorating the Christmas tree

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– Creating a one-of-a-kind gift  IMG_20151214_183645308

 

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– Setting a table for my guests

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– Making my garden a

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to relax and rest in

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– Preparing for a surprise birthday party  IMG_2280

Is love why hubby vaccums and mops like crazy when

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?  Daughters and nieces squeal over sundry items in their stockings.  A   IMG_20151227_162535529

washes over me.  I

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My eyes  smile into hubby’s.

We’re the

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, darling!  I

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Some folks won’t

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.  Crazy compulsions in others’ eyes – his love language and mine.

What is your love language, Reader?  IMG_20151228_101931

, right?  So  

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Well, here’s to what’s left of

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and to dreams come true in 2016.

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and happy New Year!

PS –

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and  _20150701_153025

sincerely