Thursday, January 12, 2017

I Am Grateful

I live in a loving, abundant, harmonious, universe and I am grateful.
~ Louise Hay

One day, between Christmas and New Year's Day, I decided to go out into the the freshly-fallen snow for a bit of a wander. The temperature was pleasant enough and I figured I would end up at one of my two usual destinations. I headed south for the river but while walking along the sidewalk, I happened to notice something which had somehow eluded me before. 

A lane. A simple lane which paralleled the streets on either side of it. A walking space between the fences of neighbourhood back yards. The fresh snow made it stand out to me and I decided to accept its unspoken invitation to walk it instead of my originally intended destination. An intense wave of nostalgia washed over me, bringing me back to my childhood in Montreal where so many of these back street lanes existed. We often walked much of our way home from school through one lane or another. I felt very grateful for this wistful memory, and now I know that I will have to explore Peterborough much more carefully from now on.

cutie daughter father snowman
As I exited the lane, I decided to zig instead of zag. This brought me another gift on this lovely winter's day. A father and child were busy putting finishing touches on their snowy masterpiece.

cutie with snowman2
The little girl was quick to advise me that she had done almost all of this creation herself. Dad stood back and allowed me to engage his sweet daughter in chitchat, and I learned all about the importance of having the right eyes, nose and apparel when planning to make a snowman.

sidewalk ends
I continued along the same street and came upon its apparent end - or so the sign said.

toward lock 19
The sidewalk may have ended but the walking path did not. I have been walking in this area for nearly a year and a half but I never opted to walk in this direction along this particular street before. This brought me to gift number three.

lock 19 Scotts Mills3
This lovely walking path along the river's edge was leading up to one of Peterborough's many locks - #19 in Scott's Mills.

lock 19 Scotts Mills2
The locks are only in use during the warmer months but it still made for an interesting outing and an unexpected treat just a few minutes from my place.

picnic on hold
Of course, picnics were also on hold for the winter. These tables were set up a little like dominoes.

near lock 19
On the way back, I stopped to admire a fallen tree dusted by the recent snow.

droplets and snow
The day was warming up a bit and snow was beginning to melt despite new flakes gently adding to the landscape.

cuties snowman2
Hopefully the snowman lasted a few more days.

I returned to the locks again a few days later, and I'll have some of those photos for you, among others, before too long.

Thank you, Universe for bestowing these three gift upon me on that day.

I am indeed grateful.

Tuesday, January 3, 2017

In an Ordinary Place

To me, photography is an art of observation. It's about finding something interesting in an ordinary place... I've found it has little to do with the things you see and everything to do with the way you see them. ~ Elliot Erwitt

Once again, I have an odd collection of items kind of left over on my drive. Some of them are food related (yeah, food leftovers!) and others are just oddities that caught my attention for one reason or another.

Let's start with food - in case you're hungry and are trying to decide what to eat.

This is one of those one minute video recipes you find in Facebook from time to time. When I happen upon one, I usually watch it, think that it sounds good and then promptly forget about it. In this case, I decided to save the page and cook it up. I might have altered the recipe to suit what I had - I definitely left out the cilantro because I'm one of that small percentage of the population who has an aversion to it - that stuff tastes like burnt plastic to me. I kept the avocado out of the cooking process so it would be less mushy. I just added it on top in the end, ground some pepper over it and sprinkled it with fresh lime. Delicious!

fresh eggsMore food in the form of fresh eggs from Carol Anne and Michael's chickens which reside in their back yard. I keep all my suitable fresh food scraps for them and in return, I'll get occasional egg offerings.

fresh eggs4
And they're pretty yummy!

egg muffins
This was a recipe I once got from my favourite namesake over at Crazy as a Loom. Essentially, they're scrambled eggs baked in muffin cups. I have no idea what I've done with that recipe but there are plenty of options available online. They took a little more time and care than standard scrambled eggs do, but they worked out well and were fun to have for company.

What is it
Let's have a bit of fun. No scrolling any further now - what do you think this is?

What it is
Did you guess? This concludes our breakfast theme for today. Grab that cup of hot coffee and enjoy the rest of the post.

This was a fun little shop in the small town of Maynooth, just north of where I had been living for a couple of years.

I was on a small lakefront beach, south of Bancroft when this Hercules jet made one of its semi-regular, fairly low, thundering flyovers in the summer of 2015.

Unintentional Placement
This is a cell phone capture. I was waiting in my doctor's office a couple of years ago when I noticed these two unrelated information flyers clipped to the wall. I was certain that someone with a sense of humour had placed them together like that intentionally but when I pointed it out to the nurse practitioner, she assured me that she had hung them herself and had never noticed how one seemed to reach into the other. Gotta love the unintentional but amusing placement.

Because of the kind of business he's in, my younger son, Alex meets a lot of performers and he very rarely gets starstruck. He has taken meeting some very big musical names in stride. This past July 1, he excitedly texted me from a Canada Day show he was doing with "I just got Fred Penner's AUTOGRAPH!!" For non-Canadians, the only American children's entertainer to whom I could possible compare Fred Penner is another Fred - Mr. Rogers. They have similar philosophies and concern for kids' self-esteem. Plus, he's a singer and songwriter, actor and author. His CBC morning television show through the 1990s, Fred Penner's Place was must-see TV for my boys. And their dad and I made sure that his music was often played in the car during road trips - even after the kids had nodded off to sleep. Anyway, it was no surprise to me that the wonderful Fred Penner had made such a deep and long-lasting impression on my unflappable, heavy metal-loving son. And my other boy was also pleased and impressed that Alex got to meet him. I can't blame them one bit.
Fred Penner signature
 Anyway, this is where Alex happened to collect his autograph - on the back of his cell phone's Otter Box which he now leaves at home so he won't compromise the signature. Never mind that his phone is now vulnerable - the autograph is safe!

Skitty glasses
A few years ago, I uploaded a couple of photos of my cats to order my own cosmetic bag design. I use it all the time. This is my dear, departed Skitty on the front and there's an image of Zephyr on the other side. On this day, I had briefly taken off my glasses for some reason and laid them to rest on the zippered bag. It was only when I looked down to reclaim them that I noticed that it appeared as if Skitty boy was wearing them. He was always a very amusing cat and even though he's gone, he still manages to make me laugh. I deeply miss that sweet boy.

Little Lake Sunset
I'll close with a photo I took with my phone one day a year ago, when walking around Little Lake with Carol Anne. It was one of those rare times that I didn't have my camera but my phone still came through for me.

Happy New Year to everyone. I hope that 2017 is a great year for one and all!