Beauty in the Ordinary

This is not about being brilliant, or extraordinary, it's not about wanting to be famous, or making headlines, or trying to impress...this about sharing a 'gift' each day with the lift the spirit of people when they read this blog, to show them the beauty in the ordinary.
"And above all, watch with glittering eyes the whole world around you because the greatest secrets are always hidden in the most unlikely places. Those who don't believe in magic will never find it." Raold Dahl

Friday, December 31, 2010

Four New Year Wishes

Lavende Mente Romarin Thym

I received these four beautiful spoons as
Christmas present this year from my lovely
daughter-in-law, Trisha.
Each one has the name of a herb engraved on them in
French, to be used in the garden as markers.
I just adore them.

And today I looked at them and I thought about what
each one of them could represent in my life, and
then I made a list of four wishes that I wish for us all.


Lavender is for ecstasy. When you breathe in
the fragrance of lavender it reconnects us with Universe understanding, it can be used to help still the mind during meditation.
Wearing lavender brings love to you, it is a symbol of truth and parity.
Lavender is pure joy.

Mint is for success, enthusiasm, money and healing.
it is used to cure most things that trouble us, it relaxes the nerves and stimulates the brain.

Rosemary is for remembrance, it can be planted in the garden or in a pot to remember loved ones, use it for mental agility, purification and loyalty. A small sprig placed under your pillow at night will aid sleep and healing.


Thyme can be used to help focus us in our spiritual goals. or group interaction, it builds confidence, and is used for empowerment Thyme is also relaxing and calming. Use it when you need to connect with past life knowledge.
Thyme is an ancient symbol of energy and magic.
Wear a sprig of thyme to renew your spirit.

I wish you all a new year filled
with love and beauty



The best is yet to be...

"Rejoice we are allied
To That which doth provide
And not partake, effect and not receive!
A spark disturbs our clod;
Nearer we hold of God
Who gives, than of His tribes that take, I must believe."

cruelly extracted from Rabbi Ben Ezra by Robert Browning


Thursday, December 30, 2010


is hosting a New Year's Eve Party.

"dear blogging poet/writer/artist friends and fiends:
I am inviting you all to participate on my page on NY' it what you will:
word salad
verbal exquisite corpse, or
visual exquisite corpse
cut-ups ala Gysin and Burroughs
or, cut-ups a la mode...or a covered dish special
all words & images welcome.
I will start it off on the morning of the 31st (East Coast, USA time) and it will end at midnight.
plug in whatever you wish to build on the previous person's contribution; invite your pals. all are welcome. but please, do use this festive occasion to dress to the nines.

I'm going...the LBD is hanging on my closet door,
pearls are at the ready,
stockings and high-heels laid out.

Bring a glass of champagne and your best bon mot!
See you there!

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

New Year Philosophy...

If I could sum up how I feel
about dipping my toe into the
New Year...

this is what I would say:

Come to the edge.

We might fall.

Come to the edge.

It’s too high!


And they came,

and he pushed,

and they flew.

Christopher Logue

I love this poem.

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Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Feeling A'Change A'Comin'...

The New Year is starting
to make her presence felt.

Rumblings of renewal and rejuvenation.

Wellness and well-being, 
creeping ever-so gently into the now.

It's time to softly awaken those
well-springs of creativity and artistry.

To look at life with a fresh beginning.

I can smell the start of something new.
Hear the song of a New Year dawning.

Welcome 2011...I can't wait for all you have in store for me!

Monday, December 27, 2010

Here's one of my favourite things I was given for Christmas!

On the top of my New Year's resolutions list
I wrote...
"get back to making exercise
a priority, and to make it fun!" I asked for
a pink soccer ball for Christmas!

Now I'm going shopping
for these!

A Magical Christmas.

It's been a wonderful Christmas, and so lovely to have read everyone's stories,
I thank you all for taking the time to write and post.

Christmas at 303 Little House was celebrated as usual with family and loved ones.
Yet, this Christmas was different, perhaps a little of the magic of the season
crept back into it for me.

I think it's a lovely way to end the year with a celebration of coming together.

It's not about gift buying, Father Christmas or Religion.
It's about being able to allow your heart to open just a little bit more,
to grow a little bit bigger, to be able to show others that you care.

It's stories like John's over at Going Gently, who had to thaw frozen pipes
with hairdryers, and cook warm spaghetti for his hens to boost
their calorie intake during the cold days they have had to endure.

And stories like Cro's, at Magnons Meanderings,
who had to celebrate Christmas alone because of flight delays,
but is now looking forward to a reunion.

And for me it's about carousels, and imagination, about being childlike again,
allowing the possibility of something magical to touch my life.

Eating gifts of homemade salted caramels

And drinking homemade Bailey's Irish Cream

Both made and wrapped so beautifully
by my daughter-in-law Trisha.
(Thank you Honey)

And making , my sister, J', chocolate rum ball recipe,
in the kitchen with my daughter.

And waking up Christmas morning
by my excited grandsons, and watching my son
make his delicious french toast for us all.

I'm not going to be drawn into the commercialism of Christmas
nor kept away from celebrating it by the self righteous.

What I felt while riding the carousel on Christmas Eve will stay with me forever.

The feeling of going around, and around and up and down,

The feeling that life is beautiful

and every day is a brand new day

worth living in love and happiness.

Sunday, December 26, 2010

The Most Wonderful (Exhausting) Time of the Year...

I'm exhausted...and I didn't even
host Christmas Day!

Today is do-nothing-but-go-for-a-walk,
eat-leftovers-Boxing Day.

My favourite day of the holiday!

Friday, December 24, 2010

Off We Go! we go.
Car is loaded with presents, deviled eggs, fresh baked bread.
Up to town tonight, then home!
Back again tomorrow...then home!
Can't wait for Boxing Day when we will crash
with daughter #1,
newspapers, books, lulus, a roaring fire and a whole lot of nothin'-to-do!
...'snow flurries'...Yikes!
what ever that means!
Merry Christmas Sis...hope the celebrations at your little house are 
Kiss those beautiful little boys for me!

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Thursday, December 23, 2010


Is anyone else totally
rubbish at wrapping gifts?

It doesn't matter how hard I try,
I am utterly and totally useless at it.

Give me a meal and I can
plate it and make it look fabulous.

I make the prettiest bed ever. Cushions, pillows, not a wrinkle in sight.

I can even arrange a vase of flowers that is heads above the crowd,

but paper, box, ribbon and tape and arggggggggh!

One more sleep and it's Christmas Eve.

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Christmas Traditions

We make three kinds of cookies
at Christmas in our family.
(and once you have read the recipes,
you'll understand why they are only made at Christmas!)

We get together in my father-in-law's teeny-tiny kitchen
sometimes ten, sometimes twelve of us, turn up the Christmas music, 
and bake all afternoon.

This year we were just ten, as youngest daughter and her hubby are
in Miami...but it was okay, we connected by speaker phone and shared some
of the afternoon with them.

Vanille Krunsl

¾ c sugar
1 egg + 1 egg yolk
10 oz butter
1 pkt vanilla sugar
3 c flour
Icing sugar and jam to finish
  1. Mix all dry ingredients
  2. Rub in butter
  3. Add eggs and egg yolk
  4. Roll on lightly-floured board
  5. Bake on ungreased baking sheet at 325 for 12-15 minutes until pale yellow
  6. Sandwich with jam and dust with icing sugar

Rum Balls

¼ lb bittersweet chocolate
2 oz butter
½ c finely ground walnuts/almonds
1 oz rum
8 oz icing sugar
1 oz graham cracker crumbs
2 egg yolks
1 Melt chocolate and butter.
2 Add the rest of the ingredients.
3 Cool approximately 1-1/2 hrs
4 Roll into bite-size balls and decorate in chocolate sprinkles/coloured sugar
Makes approximately 36

and Lady Fingers

3 c ground walnuts
3/4 c flour
3/4 c sugar
1/4 c graham crackers
1 egg
1 egg yolk

1 egg white
7 tbsp icing sugar
1 tbsp lemon juice

Heat oven to 350 degrees.
1 Mix all ingredients until well blended and forms a dough.
2 Roll dough into a rectangle approx 1/2" thick.
3 Beat egg white and lemon juice to the soft peak stage.
4 Add icing sugar one tbsp at a time until icing stands in thick peaks.
5 Spread icing on dough. Cut into fingers and place on a parchment lined cookie sheet.
6 Bake for 3 mins at 350 degrees 
7 Reduce oven temperature to 200 degrees and bake until icing is dry (approx 45 mins).

and it certainly wouldn't be Christmas
without Kenny and Dolly

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

It's A Wonderful Life

Presents are awaiting the finishing touches

Tomorrow will be baking a few
new things


225g soft dark sugar
200ml apple or orange juice
1kg grated cooking apples
225g currants
225g raisins
50g chopped nuts - walnuts, almonds
rind and juice of a lemon
scant teaspoon each of allspice and

Melt the sugar in the apple juice and add all the other ingredients once the sugar has dissolved.
Bring to the boil and simmer for 30 minutes until you have a soft mash. Put in sterilised jars while hot. Will keep for a couple of months.
Thank you Rosemary

The snow has fallen and softened
the world outside

I'm ready for the star

and the story

Happy Christmas Everyone!

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