Poor Shantzy…I share your sadness. It’s windy and snowy…and gray again.
But cheer up, little one. Christmas is coming, and there’s sure to be something under the tree from your owner, just for you.
The day after the snow fell, the leaves gave up their will to live and dropped in one collective clump all over the neighbourhood. And even though we received WAY more snow than usual, it melted, leaving the landscape a brown and barren place. The only sign of life outside my window has become my muse…
Being natural is simply a pose, and the most irritating pose I know. – Oscar Wilde
Easy, Breezy, Beautiful…Cover Squirrel!
Compassion is the greatest form of love humans have to offer. – Rachel Joy Scott
Proud Mama Moment: Big Guy is an arborist, and therefore often crosses paths with woodland creatures. Most the of the time, those creatures are complaining about the noise. Last week, he came across a very cold baby squirrel lying at the base of a tree. This little one snuggled right in. Big Guy found a shelter that would take this baby. Unfortunately, the story doesn’t have a happy ending, and this little one was too sick or injured, and he didn’t survive the day.
While it made us both sad, I’m so proud of my “lumberjack” with a big heart. XOXO
Compassion brings us to a stop, and for a moment we rise above ourselves.
– Mason Cooley
It’s another gray Monday morning and it can’t decide if it’s going to rain, snow, or sleet. Everything is covered in ice. Even the squirrels have given up and gone inside!
We need a little sunshine.
“What sunshine is to flowers, smiles are to humanity. These are but trifles, to be sure; but scattered along life’s pathway, the good they do is inconceivable.”
I’m being efficient today – making 1 post fit 2 categories. Cee Neuner’s Fun Foto Challenge this week is Yellow…and as soon as I saw that, my mind went to photos I took late in October, right before the snow flew: Ginger Crystal tea in a forgotten sunflower cup, with the last of my sunny brown-eyed susans.
In the past year, I’ve found myself enjoying more chai and ginger based teas, so it was no surprise that this little gem caught my eye. This particular blend contains 3 forms of ginger: ginger root, crystallized ginger, and ginger-infused honey. (Note: Interested in making your own ginger-infused honey? Me too! Check out Melissa K. Norris!)
Crystallized ginger is a fancy name for candied ginger. It’s a sweet, chewy, and spicy treat made from fresh ginger. You can purchase it in most stores, or make your own by skinning and slicing fresh ginger, and boiling it in water, then a sugar or honey solution. Once cooled, toss it in sugar and let it dry for 24 hours. It can be stored in an airtight container for 2-4 weeks.
Lemon, ginger, honey, or a combination of 2 or 3, are great natural remedies for cold and flu symptoms, including scratchy throats and nausea, and can help reduce inflammation and help balance sugar levels. Ginger may boost your metabolism so you burn more calories, and it’s also great for your skin and hair.
The tea was a delicate yellow, and I thought the lemongrass tempered the bite of ginger with the tartness of lemon. I found it “zingy-er” than Tetley’s Lemon Ginger tea, but definitely milder than David’s “The Buzz” tea.
This tea was perfect for warding off the late afternoon chill, as the shadows lengthened.
And it may be perfect for adding some sunshine today, since the weather still can’t decide! 🙂 Happy Monday!
Life is like a cup of tea – it’s all in how you make it.
There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under the heavens. Ecclesiastes 3:1
Everything changes, even stone. Claude Monet
True joy of nature is when every drop of water shines like a pearl. Anamika Mishra
A stumbling-block for the pessimist; a stepping stone to the optimist.
This week, the highly-anticipated mini kitchen renovation began this week. I said “adieu” to the 1980’s faux butcher block countertop and “welcome” to a simple charcoal gray countertop. The “vintage” tiles from 1969 are gone and framing done in preparation for electrical work this week. I’m so excited!
Baking is love made edible. -Unknown
Even though we’re in the midst of renovations, meals still need to be prepared, and I’m scheduled to provide snacks for a ladies’ event on Wednesday, so I’m sneaking in some baking whenever I can!
This afternoon I baked cranberry streusel muffins and orange jack-o-lantern sugar cookies. Of course, I have to enjoy a cup of tea while I’m waiting.
I bake so I don’t punch people -Unknown
There are always two people in every picture: the photographer and the viewer.
– Ansel Adams
You don’t make a photograph just with a camera.
You bring to the act of photography all the pictures you have seen, the books you have read, the music you have heard, the people you have loved.
– Ansel Adams
And sometimes you just have to lay it all aside and just enjoy the view…
…which is exactly what I was doing when Big Guy took this photo of my camera!
It’s not Wednesday anymore – I know! Sometimes our good intentions and well-laid plans fall to pieces, and we find ourselves at the end of the week, confused as to what just happened.
I had to stop and think about where the time flew…This week I inched along a highway in holiday traffic, I spent a lovely afternoon in a Victorian tea room with some fantastic women, I cooked and baked goodies for my family, and I just found out I have to pack most of my kitchen by Monday so it can be torn apart. I may have to borrow my friend’s kitchen! Now that I’m not working, eating out is a luxury! And I’ve started writing. Not here obviously, because it’s not Wednesday any more.
What started this week was a good thing too. Me, the person who would put “Mornings” on the “Top 10 list of things I hate” (alongside spiders and crumbs on the floor), crept from my bed at 7 a.m. last Sunday morning. I was up before anyone else, including the sun. I grabbed a hoodie, shoes and my camera and slipped out the front door. I put my shoes on outside so I wouldn’t wake Big Guy who was sleeping on the couch, and there was frost on that front porch. In fact, everything was covered in frost and the thick grass was soggy. I could see my breath, even without my glasses, which were still inside.
The world was still rapt in silence.
Heavy mist veiled the coloured forest beyond the field, and the dampness crept around the edges of sweater and my bare legs (I was still in my nightshirt)! The skyline remained pale gold for a long time, so I wandered around the back. I startled a mourning dove resting in the tall grass, which made something in the trees scold me for waking it too early.
A single crow’s raspy voice blared like an alarm clock.
Ever so slowly, an almost imperceptible golden warmth begin to embrace the trees, creating the impression of trees on fire. My photos don’t begin to capture the contrast.
My legs and toes were cold and my fingers were beginning to ache. I seriously considered going in, but hesitated, thankfully, long enough to see the sun break over the horizon. The higher it rose, the mist grew thicker and began to move.
A few final snaps and it was all over. I sneaked back in the house and crawled into bed to shiver. My fingers were nearly frozen, but my soul was warm.
The soul that is within me, no man can degrade – Frederick Douglass
Baked Apple Chai (formerly Spiced Apple) is potpourri for all the senses. It starts with the aroma of rich spices long associated with Thanksgiving and Christmas: cinnamon, chicory, cardamom and star anise. It filled the kitchen where it was steeping, and it made my mouth water.
Star anise is often used as an exotic spice in Indian and Chinese cooking. It is rich in antioxidants, and vitamins A and C, all of which help with coughs and colds, and a number of digestive issues.
The colour is a rich amber, like apple cider. The tea itself is quite chunky with dehydrated apple and figs, whole star anise, and cardamom pods. The flavour was sweet with deep tangy notes from the fruit, followed by the heat of cinnamon and clove, and the slightly bitter and herbaceous zing of the star anise.
Love is a fruit in season at all times, and within reach of every hand.
– Mother Theresa
This caffeine-free fruit infusion steeps for a minimum of 5 minutes in water that is 95C. If you tend to “eyeball” the amount of tea by judging the height of the leaves in your infuser, be generous. Since the tea is comprised of chunky pieces, it will fill the infuser quickly. I didn’t use enough at first and I was left with a weak apple tea with mild spice. Also, use an infuser that will allow the fruit to expand as it steeps in order to extract the most flavour! As with many teas that use cinnamon, you may have some residue settle at the bottom of your cup. I figure, that’s just part of the experience of loose tea.
Otherwise, this was a mildly spicy “hug in a mug”, perfect for a crisp Fall afternoon.
"Whatever you are not changing, you are choosing." —Laurie Buchanan
Teaching the art of composition for photography.
I need the funny because they're teenagers now
Humor at the Speed of Life
Life happens between coffee & wine!
Come and enjoy the beach with me!
Photographe Reims France
Brought to you by caffeine and wishful thinking...
Tips and tricks to shoot some better photos of the most exciting places
Exploring my passion for photography one click at a time!
The Art and Craft of Blogging
Where all the cool squirrels hang out!