Thursday, 12 January 2017

a simple life

What a week it's been for weather. After our big snowfall on the weekend, we got the typical high pressure, sunny and, this time, bitterly cold weather.

But didn't it make for a beautiful day,
the high pressure negative ions always putting me in a positive mood.
And have you noticed? The days are getting longer!

We got a good deal on green peppers so I stuffed them with organic short grain brown rice, black beans, scallions, celery, cumin and curry, topping each one with a thick slice of tomato. Yum.

Babu has grown into a very loving cat, giving me "permission" to sit while Wally served.

This is how I found Muji the next morning- hiding!

Doesn't he do a great impression of Gloria Swanson?

Babu strikes a pose and as usual, any attention I give him makes Muji jealous
so after quite a while taking pictures of Muji....

he made a ghostly move to leave his lair

and come pose for me as well, funny pretty little boy

"Oh but being a model is so bo-o-ring.."
from ghostly to ghastly

later that day, two angels

That night we had a dreadful wind and most of the next morning with rain pelting the house and windows  -  NOVA SCOTIA!!  She can be so beautiful and so cruel.

One night, too lazy to get a proper sketchbook, using whatever is in arm's reach,
Wally teased me the next day about the lines running through my drawing.
I often settle in for some embroidering or something creative after the dishes are don and Wally gone to bed.
Quiet nights are so dear to me.

pleasant pastimes
pleasant dreams

Monday, 9 January 2017

snow and more snow

Good Monday to you. A second week of January, always a favoured month for me.

We finally got some snow on Friday that left this picturesque world for us on Saturday

as we headed out once again for the health food store in Greenwood

the highway drive worth it for the savings- some things 1/5 of the cost!
This highway sign is the 2nd exit into Kentville that must go through Coldbrook

Suddenly a huge flock of crows flew overhead- about 100 of them!
Not nearly the size of  some gatherings of thousands!!
I'm astonished that there isn't more reportage of this phenomenon that seems to happen in the fall.
I didn't know it continued in some places this late into the winter.

As the road leans further into the Annapolis Valley we see a sign for Berwick, Middleton and Bridgewater. We're headed for the Kingston exit to get to its sister town of Greenwood.

a lovely crest of pines

a slice of forest beyond the farmfield

The north mountain rises from this fertile valley, all asleep now

many of the same farmsteads I showed you last time

a bit clearer without the driving snow to interfere

the charming red buildings that house equipment, grain and/or animals

some operations substantially bigger than others

an old part of the world by North American standards

a better shot of that sweet house in Kingston that I showed you in the last post

and a few others

to show you how very quaint it can be out here

We come to the junction where we turn into Greenwood.
CFB stands for Canadian Forces Base. This one in Greenwood is Canada's largest air force base.
There is a young sophisticated energy here, especially the young wives.

And here we are, back once again at out little health food store to pick up a new batch of supplies.

I asked Wally to slow down so that I might capture this beauty spa in the low light, sorry that their Christmas lights hadn't come on yet (most folks use a timer) as it was spectacular last week.

At 6pm, the snow started. This is around 11:30 that night.
I enjoyed seeing our Christmas baubles backlit by the streetlight.

We still have some old yellow streetlights further up the road but they, strangely enough,
don't show the falling snow the way the new white light LED ones do.

Babu is waiting in the kitchen for me.

Dishes done, it's time for bed.

The next morning Babu is on the scene checking out all the excitement outside.

I didn't notice until this shot that he had some kitty litter on his nose which he often does, rooting around in his litter like a little piggy. I have to be quick to nab him so I can brush it off.

and there's Daddy, making a big arc with the snowblower,

watching the trajectory while

while Babu watches him

It isn't long before pretty Babu baby is making love eyes at me,
a piece of Muji hair stuck to his nose now

He starts to roll about

trying to engage me in some vigorous massage which he loves

We hear Wally getting closer, channelling his way through about 30cm (15 inches)

Everything is more beautiful in the snow including my neighbour's backyard (whisper) the one on the other side that I never show you as it is filled with garbage (sigh)

Life's funny that way. We enter into things thinking that they will turn out one way
and they proceed in a direction we never would have chosen.
We find ourselves resistant at first. "No, no, this isn't how I wanted it."
And then, in time, we relax, we adjust, we
change our trajectory.
That choice could be a very small action, making room for another way of looking at things, an emotional bridge between being stuck and loosening our rigidity.

Anyway, this embroidery project started as a way to express my feelings about friends. The true blue, the patchwork, the joy and the comforting, not to mention the little flowers,
they all are choices I made intuitively, realizing now their symbolism. 
We have to trust that everything will turn out all right.

Friday, 6 January 2017

new year they say

Our first week of the year almost over and we're getting a steady light snow all day with a promised 15cm tomorrow. It's been a quiet week of readjusting. Wally wants to keep the Christmas tree up one last weekend, and I can't blame him- it's so beautiful.

On New Year's Eve Day we finally got our act together to get ourselves over to my favourite health food store in Greenwood where Cindy sells in bulk, a real cost saver.

The sun appeared to be setting as we passed through a forested valley too dark to get any decent pictures from a moving car

In fact my pictures are blurry anyway in the low light and blowing snow

It is a beautiful drive along the 101

past farmfields rimmed in forest

Eventually the valley broadened into the multiple farms it is known for.
You can barely make out the North Mountain in the distance.

Part of the mountain is patched in snow where the farms creep up it.

There are many barns in different shapes and sizes. Hopefully you will perceive my unfocussed shots as a romantic blur, the best way to view life sometimes.

There are some lovely old homes in Kingston, the sister town to Greenwood

This one is particularly gorgeous

Even a raised bungalow has its charm dressed for Christmas.
That blue thing at the foot of the steps, for those of you who don't know, is a snow scoop.

Another little house dressed for Christmas

and the humble fa├žade of our destination: Valley Natural Foods

Two days later, you'd never know it snowed.  New Year's Day was very dreary and rainy,
warm enough to wipe out a lot of the snow

Here is how I found my two little monkeys, late afternoon.
You can tell by Muji's ears that he knows I'm there.

And two mornings after that- "What's this?"

Muji has spied a crow- OMG!

As I said, it has been snowing all day.
You can imagine my alarm when I spied roadworkers out front.

What a Beatles-Abbey-Road picture they make.
Thankfully they didn't stay long at all.

Babu after I played with him. He is beginning to get very needy of my attention lately.
Rubbing his head against the table, wanting me to get the message:

"I want cuddl-l-l-les"

I was hoping this project wouldn't turn out to be so ... pretty.
Clearly the subject and the patterns are sweet. I found myself in a sentimental mood that set the tone for the days to come, making a piece of work I'm not altogether comfortable with. I've decided to finish it regardless as there is too much unfinished work around here. We'll see how it goes.

So clearly last year's beginnings overlap into this year. It wouldn't be the first time I reset the year on the Chinese New Year!

Here's to new beginnings and the truism, "today is the first day of the rest of your life!"